Bully, Downtown Boys | Empty Bottle | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Downtown Boys

Downtown Boys

Norlan Olivo

When: Fri., July 8, 9 p.m. 2016
Price: $15
Ramshackle and politically fueled, Providence’s Downtown Boys represent a series of pistons whirring in a gorgeous punk-rock unison to create a wailing mass of unrest. It’s the kind of intense clatter that sounds as if it’s reverberating off the crumbling brick—and cutting through the musty stench—of every basement, corridor, and back alley in the underground. Fronted by the dual vocals of Victoria Ruiz and Joey La Neve Defrancesco, the six-piece Downtown Boys released their debut full-length with last year’s Full Communism (Don Giovanni), a record that’s made exultant not only by the former’s unapologetic, confrontational voice—lyrics are sung in English and Spanish—but also the inclusion of saxophone, which sands the rough edges of the din and helps tracks congeal. Kicking off with the commanding Ruiz alone at the pulpit calling out “white hegemony,” the album’s opus, “Monstro,” is one part rousing anthem, another partstraight-ahead punk burner. It’s the most well-rounded of the record’s tracks, and evidence that though Downtown Boys maintain a DIY punk aesthetic to the max, they have chops enough to spread their message wide.
— Kevin Warwick
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