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Bent Left-Premeditated Insanity

( Bent Left – Premeditated Insanity


Punk/hardcore that delivers the goods.

Politically charged and punk-rocking hard, Missouri punks Bent Left deliver a satisfying, if brief, release with Premeditated Insanity.

Political punk can often fall short of poignancy or be so heavy-handed that it’s unbearable. It can also fall somewhere between sickeningly poppy (and therefore corny) or brutally aggressive to the point of being impossible to enjoy. However, Bent Left manages to find a good balance on both fronts.

The album presents an interesting sonic balance between harsher hardcore punk and the lighter, bouncy quality of pop-punk. The vocals can be harsh, but still maintain a good tone. These are not at all screaming; the sound of them might turn some people away, while others might find it too weak. It really just depends on how you like your punk. The music manages to follow a structure more in line with So-Cal or pop-punk, but at the same time, the band manages to tackle it with an aggressiveness more in line with hardcore.

The lyrics also manage to be far more poetic and abstract in their political sense. They are laced with symbolism and emotion rather than the “F*** the government” lines that often appear in political punk. The band manages to be far more creative than many political punks manage to be.

Lines like “And now, the debtors/they be locked away/we fight to keep the peace/the criminals in capitals/the followers in lead,” manage to display the band’s message without feeling to heavy-handed. They also have incredibly long song titles, which can be hit or miss with cleverness and creativity.

Unfortunately, even with seven songs, the album only clocks in at19 minutes. Most of them are incredibly brief and hard to discern from one another. However, the fourth track, “A Bologna Sandwich a Day Keeps the Doctor Away,” is the main exception, clocking in at three and a half minutes with catchy hooks, great lyrics and great vocal delivery.

All in all, Bent Left does an excellent job with Premeditated Insanity. Though the songs are somewhat muddied together, they have some excellent writing and delivery.

– Nate Williams