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Album #77: Cable Ties – Far Enough

  • Released: 2020
  • Origin: Melbourne, Australia
  • Label: Merge
  • Best Track: Sandcastles

“My uncle Pete, he’s complaining ’bout the greenies. He says that they have gone too far, I say Pete, they don’t go far enough.” It sounds like a familiar cross-generational dinner table discussion, but among the opening lines of an album, it’s striking and tone-setting.

It took me a while to register that this line also lends its name to the title of this second album from Australian punk trio Cable Ties. This is an album where the lyrics are worth reading in their own right, delving into introversion and anxiety, but at the same time idealism and hope.

The clash between boomers and millennials is a common theme, but on the first track I heard from this album, ‘Sandcastles’, I detect a degree of criticism of the political left as well. I might be way off, but lyrics like “What kind of movement do you hope to move, by burning everyone who doesn’t speak the same?” see to allude to the idea that nobody changes their mind by being silenced or told they’re stupid.

Unusually for a punk album, Far Enough consists of just eight tracks, averaging at over five minutes each. That’s partly because of the drawn-out noise rock elements of tracks like ‘Lani’ and ‘Anger’s Not Enough’, giving the album fantastic depth. Jenny McKechnie’s vocal performance helps here too, reminding me of Jello Biafra in a way with its provocative and gloating bravado.

It’s a great record, all in all – one of the best I’ve heard so far this year.

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