Song of the Day

Spiritual Cramp, “I Feel Bad Bein' Me,” from Police State (Deranged Records, 2018)

If there’s a band that has both defined and defied the confines of what “punk” could be in 2018, it’s Spiritual Cramp. The San Francisco-based sextet seeks to embody the artistic melting pot of its home city by injecting its wide variety of influences into its music. Enter: Mass Hysteria— the band’s debut EP they released last year on React! Records. The EP showcased the band’s ability to dip into a barrage of genres while maintaining the gritty punk aesthetic.

It’s no surprise that such varietous band would continue expanding its sound. This is what Spiritual Cramp does in the follow-up to that release. Police State is a collection of tunes that is as eclectic as it is ambitious. The band has welcomed elements from genres such as reggae (“850 Bryant”) and pop (“Blot Clot”) into its list of influences, and the result is a surprisingly refreshing.

Spiritual Cramp at 924 Gilman St, Berkeley, CA, 2018. (Photo: Michael D. Thorn)

The best example of this can be heard in the EP’s single “I Feel Bad Bein’ Me.” Singer Michael Bingham’s falsetto weaves seamlessly with driving downbeats and an infectiously catchy guitar riff. The result is a song that’s akin to the danceable art pop of the Talking Heads. It’s a welcome addition to the band’s wonderfully eclectic discography.

Police State is out now and available via Deranged Records. If you prefer the whole digital thing, Bandcamp is the place to go.

Tagged: spiritual cramp