“Don’t Even Ask” is the second full length release from New Jersey punky reggae rockers and it continues the upward trend that the band has been on since their first release.
The album kicks things off with the aptly titled “Headrush” which puts a smooth reggae vibe in the forefront of a song that feels like it’s going to blow up at any second. It keeps its vibe which carries over to the jangly guitar and the smooth snippets of echo-y horns of “So Damn Destructive”. “I Can’t Swim” is a great track that mixes acoustic with hip-hop, reggae and funk. I’m reminded a lot of the Long Beach Dub Allstars hip-hop stuff.
“Insomnia” picks up the pace with a ripping punk rock opening followed by some danceable third wave ska guitar and stays fast throughout. It’s also a very relatable song about not being able to sleep at night as you worry about problems that you can’t do anything about. “Crazy” is one of my favorite tracks from the album. The trippy guitar and melancholy reggae rhythm puts you in a dance trance in which there is no escape.
The last half of the album is as equally great as the first half with the next five tracks bouncing from Caribbean flavor, hip-hop reggae, punk rock, hard rock and ska punk. It does this with some witty and poignant lyrics about life, love, society and those crazy thoughts within all of our heads.
The fellas in P-Funk North continue to sound better with every release as they expand their sound with more of their personal influences. They speak the truth, play hard and write some awesome songs and continue to find new ways to impress. “Don’t Even Ask” is a positive expansion to their sound and easily one of my favorite listens of the year so far. If you like your punk rock reggae with a dose of down to earth reality, this is a band for you to check out!
Bottom Line: “Don’t Even Ask” is a mix of the Sublime sound with a dose of Operation Ivy. While those are big shoes to fill, P-Funk North should be on the ska punk and reggae radar any second now.
Notable Tracks: Insomnia, Cold One, Crazy, Headrush, I Can’t Swim