The Destructors are a British punk band, formed on the back of the 1977 punk revolution. They have attempted to re-live this heyday on more than one occasion, having reformed alongside a continually revolving line-up, name changes and a huge catalogue of releases. One cannot deny their passion for the music that changed their lives. Their latest output, ‘New York New York’ is as close to a concept album as true punk will ever get, with a focus on the punk scene that evolved in New York in the early 1970s.
The theme begins on the album sleeve with an Andy Warhol inspired collage of punk legends, such as Sid Vicious, Iggy Pop and The Ramones appearing outside a re-imagined CBGBs. The theme is obvious and consistent throughout. It is also pulled off convincingly, particularly on archetypally punk opening track, ‘Chelsea Hotel’. The music is everything one would expect from a New York punk inspired album, with brash vocals atop of ferociously fast paced riffs and a blistering drum track. The band does a sterling job of combining the sound of American Punk bands like the New York Dolls and The Ramones with the visceral intensity of British Punk legends like Sex Pistols. They also achieve moments that are slightly distant from conventional 1970s Punk; on tracks such as ‘New York Vampires’ the band courageously introduce keys and more musical harmonies into their performance.
Overall, ‘New York New York’, is largely what one would expect and want from an album themed on New York punk, albeit a completely nostalgic endeavour. If you are a fan of classic punk rock, or wish you could have walked the streets of New York in the mid-seventies, give this album a listen.