No time to stop in all aspects. Bumpin Uglies is a plethora of different music, yet they are for sure a fusion of reggae, punk and ska. Formed a little over a decade ago in Annapolis, this funky foursome has paved a dusty tour van path across the country since the band's formation in 2008. The newest EP, Buzz, is a six-song compilation released rather quickly after the crazy success of their 2018’s full-length album, Beast From the East. Since the jump, these guys — nay, men — have showcased their growth in their music. Past mistakes, dead end jobs, drinking to alleviate pain, loss (or lack of) family members, a cigarette after a long day… These are all familiar issues to each of us and they are just a few relatable things you can find on ANY BU album. That said, I do hear and feel a more adult pace, as well as lyrical content, in Buzz.
… feel a more adult pace, as well as lyrical content, in Buzz.
It is difficult to find lyrics that speak to everyone. Not having any gas is legitimately an issue and starts the song “Self-loathing”. The track's words create vulnerable, raw and frankly intimidating feelings. They are direct reflection of our own fears, emotions and insecurities like an old attic mirror. Along the reality check lines, working a dead end serving job is captured so perfectly in the song “Serving”. I would know…
Then, there’s the album's namesake “Buzz” with a big feature from their brothers in ridiculousness, Tropidelic. When you add some Trop to a record, just expect serious sounding brass. My favorite song is actually a ballad called “This Is Ours”. In dedication, I’m sure to his wife and their newborn son and first child. Brandon has the ability to make all of our shortcomings feel less debilitating verbally. Wolfie, TJ and Chad are each phenomenal musicians individually, but all together are a force. It’s like a taco — you need each ingredient for the best end result. BU is the defintion of an underdog band that has never let naysayers' opinions stifle the raging fire inside all four of these men.
Bumpin Uglies was a breakout performance last month in the sunshine state at Reggae Rise Up Florida, recently partnered with Ineffable Records and have numerous festivals on the calendar, as well as an upcoming tour coming at you. This EP is impressive and most definitely shows the guys maturing into who they are destined to be. If you have yet to check out Bumpin Uglies, I suggest you do so! Click the links below for the band's upcoming tour and festival listings. If you have NOT heard Buzz and would like to, just hop in… Next stop, Uglies Nation.
Purchase or stream Buzz EP:
- Locust Avenue
- Island Time
- This is Us
Disclaimer: All views presented in this album review are those of the reviewer and not necessarily those of Top Shelf Music.