The Filaments – Look to the Skies

Written by Mark Jones

The Filaments have been around since 2001 and released the two excellent albums ‘Skull & Trombones’ and ‘…What’s Next’ before splitting up in 2005 when lead singer Jon emigrated to America. After a couple of sold-out reunion shows in London in 2006 the band reformed properly in 2009 and released ‘Land of Lions’ in 2013 and have since built a reputation for amazing songwriting and energetic live shows. We’ve had to wait 5 years for a new album but ‘Look to the Skies’ is well worth the wait and is quite possibly their best album yet.

The music the band play is one-of-a-kind and fuses all types of punk such as UK82, Dub, 2-Tone, Ska, Hardcore, Psychobilly, and a bit of Oi! which makes for an amazingly unique sound which has something for everyone. The album gets going with the ferociously brilliant ‘Fuck The “Alt”-Right’ before the excellent title track highlighting the songwriting abilities the band have. Wow! What a start. ‘Rip-Off World’, a Ska sing-along that is guaranteed to get you dancing and singing along to is next before the brilliant ‘No Men To Parade’, both of which wouldn’t be out of place on a Rancid album.

The album continues with the much slower yet powerful ‘Living In The Crosshairs’, a well-written gem of a song with excellent lyrics that are well delivered by Jon. Another Ska song is next, although Underdogs’ has much more of a dub feel to it than the previous Ska track. ‘Tread Carefully’, ‘Ask No Favors’ and ‘All We’ve Ever Known’ are all great songs but for me, the best 2 tracks are the final 2 tracks on the album. ‘The Verge’ and ‘Killing Machine’ are both sublime sing-along anthems that are a fitting end to this fine album.

I’ve had this album for less than a week but I can tell after playing this constantly for that time, it just gets better after each listen and this is already one of my albums of the year. If you like all sub-genres of punk I strongly recommend you get this album, you won’t be disappointed.