Penetration are one of the great lost punk bands that shone brightly before burning out. Their first two albums – Moving Targets and Coming Up For Air – are punk pop classics that pissed all over what the massively overrated Siouxsie was doing, The secret to their brilliance was the powerful, yet keening, vocals of Pauline Murray who spoke to punks like me who had an ear for melody.
So it is a risk to put out a third album some 36 years after their last record, but on the whole Resolution is a good move as Pauline remains in good voice and their powerpop sensibilities are still place. Splendid lead single The Beat Goes On has a familiarly delicious hook and lyrics that are less angry, but more reflexive of being a middle aged punk.
Former Buzzcock John Maher has joined on drums anchoring the more rocky Two Places and Calm Before The Storm that recaptures the energy of their glory days.
It’s depressing when comebacks from great bands fail, but Resolution sits well with Penetration’s almost perfect back catalogue, and although this should really be a 7 Pauline’s still glorious voice is worth another point.