Back in May 2019, Vancouver trio Corner Boys released their sole album… and promptly split a few months later. In retrospect, they couldn’t have known that the album’s title (‘Waiting For 2020’) would soon seem grimly ironic – and we all know why, right? No reason to go over all that shit again. But while the past two years have at least seen drummer/songwriter Patrick McEachnie staying active across two essential records with hardcore heroes Chain Whip, lockdown saw him switching roles. Basically, he bought a guitar and made an excellent record all on his lonesome, and as followers of his other projects will have come to expect, it’s fucking excellent.
‘Glad To Be Forgotten’ is the debut album by Pack Rat – in some ways you can see some level of crossover with Corner Boys in its manic energy and dedication to hooks (cuts like ‘Next Time Hit Me’ and ‘My Own Reality’ are so damn catchy, you could be forgiven for thinking you’ve already been listening to ‘em on repeat for the past 20 years). Familiar reference points show up (the melodies of the Pointed Sticks; the garage-slanted rifferama of Rudi or The Undertones) while a tinny budget synth keeps things ticking along nicely, just to remind you that this is a homespun DIY project. But honestly, this has the feel of a fully fleshed-out project and leaves you desperate for another fix of its sweet’n’sour tang.
For anyone who loves the collision point between ‘New Rose’, powerpop sunshine and sheer rock’n’roll exuberance, this is essential. For everyone else, this is surely the gateway to all of that good stuff. You want to hear the tunes that’ll star on future generations’ equivalents to the Killed By Death comps? That’ll set your pulse soaring and your pogo muscles into overdrive? That’ll remind you of why this punk rock business still feels worth dedicating your life to, even after all this time? Hey, Pack Rat’s got ‘em. Now do your part.
(Drunken Sailor Records)