Punk Online

MISE*EN*SCENE – ‘One Way’ EP Review


mise-en-sceneEvery now and again, as we review hundreds of albums here at Punk Online, you get one that just makes everybody look up, walk over, turn up the volume and then just break into wide smiles. The new six track EP from perennial giggers, Mise*En*Scene (also known as M*E*S) is one of those releases.

Originally started (in 1996) as a punk band, M*E*S have evolved bit by bit into a heavy Ska/Punk/Fiesta-orchestra. With a full brass-section aboard and ten band members in total, M*E*S has been playing all over Europe, USA and Mexico since 2002. Playing with bands as diverse as Gaslight Anthem, Leftover Crack, Against Me, The Adicts and Conflict.

Getting the party started wherever the band performs, M*E*S took a short break from touring to record six brand new songs which resulted in ‘One Way’. The E.P. opens up with some accordion and group vocals and then launches into a superb ska driven track with a hint of gypsy punk in Gogol Bordello style – it is impossible to sit/stand still as the rhythm just demands movement!

Warpath enters with an extended drum beat, joined by guitar, bass and the superb brass section before the reggae/ska beat is joined by growled but melodic vocals – crossing The Levellers with Rancid would get you somewhere near the sound M*E*S craft on this super track. On Mexican Dub, the laid back reggae approach at the beginning livens up to a full on stomp and plays with the two genres for two and a half minutes.

Control takes the reggae/ska theme into another direction as the growled vocals add a touch of menace to the song whereas Set My Mind Free moves over to the gypsy/eastern folk sound with some great interplay between guitar chords and horns to launch a fast paced ska track.

The final track, Fragile is a fun packed ska paced song with verses sung in French and dance inducing rhythms aplenty. It is a strong ending to a simply fun-packed EP. This Belgian band are well worth your time and support – check out Mise*En*Scene here: https://m-e-s.bandcamp.com/album/one-way