The self-titled debut from New Zealand four-piece Ayn Randy delivers plenty of urgent punk on rip-roaring songs like “Billionare”, “Bart”, and “Fuckin Sheep”. But that’s not all the Wellington band’s first release brings to the table, because tracks like “Paranoid” and “Let Me In” also see Ayn Randy adding grungier ingredients into the mix. There’s definitely a socially conscious message embedded in many of Ayn Randy’s tracks too. But the band’s amusing use of the name of the controversial writer and philosopher Ayn Rand doesn’t reflect an all-encompassing political focus.
Instead, band members Liz (guitar/vocals), Tanya (bass/vocals), Bonnie (guitar/vocals) and Kitt (drums) are primarily here to let loose and have fun — as another great video interview from website Up the Punks makes clear. Ayn Randy’s sound is duly spiked with shout-a-long hooks, and their tracks tear along with plenty of pogoing propulsion, but the band aren’t afraid to get heavier or darker where need be.
Having their album recorded, mixed and mastered by Vanya Vitali at Scumbag College certainly helps bring Ayn Randy’s raw energy to the forefront. The band’s debut has that familiar abrasive Scumbag causticity, where a rough-edged finish befits the DIY spirit showcased here.
Ultimately, Ayn Randy cover a lot of musical bases. Some of their music reminds me of older groups like L7, Devo, or The Wipers. But then other parts remind me of more modern and local bands, like Unsanitary Napkin, Fantails, and Freak Magnet — or, in heavier parts, like Bonecruncher or A+ weirdos Poverty & Spit.
Point being, if you enjoy any of those aforementioned bands, or you’re a fan of dynamic and driving underground punk in general, you might find a lot to love about Ayn Randy’s debut.