This week I got to listen to and review a new album from a band I had never heard of or seen before. Social Strife is a relatively young band, formed in early 2013 in Toronto. Following the release of their self-titled EP comes the full length album, With Friends Like These. The album was recorded, mixed and mastered at Secret Suburbia Studios in Toronto, headed by T.J. Habibi.
Leading this band is Sean Farro, aka The Unicorn. According to the biography on their site, “Social Strife’s epic punk style continues to wave the flag of frustration with middle-of-the-road play-it-safe rock radio bullshit! […] Nobody is saying or doing anything worth listening to! There’s no danger in rock ‘n’ roll anymore!” Social Strife is adamant that there is nothing playing on the radio worth of a listen, and that “it’s all watered down crap!” Drawing from their love of big shows, punk rock, and hook-oriented melodies, Social Strife has “set out to put the “strife” back in rock ‘n’ roll!”
I have to disagree with the above statement. I think there are plenty of musicians and bands out there getting air play that are certainly worth listening to, you just have to know where to look. I’ve never been to Toronto, nor do I frequent its air waves, so I cannot really comment or speculate on the music scene there. Social Strife considers themselves hard rock and/or punk, but I think they’re closer to rock more than anything. However, their lyrical and musical style does certainly reflect a type of frustration with the status quo, which is typical of punk. The fourth track, “Blind”, definitely shows their punk side, and I think it is my favorite on the album. Another track that stood out for me was “Reign”. This track was catchy and I think it demonstrates the bands musical ability as well.
Overall, the album is well put together. I believe Social Strife is band that will continue to grow and build on their abilities while expanding their fan base. I’m giving the album a 6/10.
If you want to give it a listen or buy a copy then head over to their website. Also, keep an eye out for any upcoming shows in your area.
Written by Joey Beaudin