Released with a mighty boom on June 15, “First Contact,” the debut EP from Turkey Blaster Omega, is more of an ambush than your standard, accelerated ska listening experience. Rochester’s ska newbies on the scene, though clearly on the fast side of the track, keep it thick and dangerous with the help of the honkin,’ wall-to-wall horns.
Songs such as “Blank Space” and “Let It Go” get the punchy punk treatment from the horns as the guitar weeps not so gently. Singer Katie Mangiamele commands the mic with raucous urgency, while the rest of the band rages beneath her honest and at times profane declamations. “So let’s all try to love, we’re all gonna fuckin’ die so let it go!” she raves on the latter tune.
Joining Mangiamele on this ska-tastic blitzkrieg bop is a lineup that simply doesn’t quit. It’s relentless. The band includes trumpeters Chris Townsend and Ryan Merlo with their brassy wail, Aaron Brendze-Brownlie with his salacious sax playing, trombonist Caitlyn Bober, Lenny Palmieri on guitar, bassist Jack Shannon, and the drums of Kyle McAnany.
There just ain't enough music to skank to in the local scene, if you ask me. Until now. At last, some punk-ska salvation.
Frank De Blase is CITY's music writer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.