HumanDartsmain

These are some of The Human Darts.

Best information available says it is currently a 3-piece. A mysterious Mr. Zelk (drums, keyboard, lead vocals) seems to be motivator to this on-again-off-again band known as The Human Darts. Also credited is Shane Close (guitar, vocals) and John Arduser (guitar, vocals).

It was the late 70’s when the world first heard anything by The Human Darts. A hit-it-and-quit-it punk band that managed to set a recording into circulation that planted the seed of various reformations along the years.

This would be one of those reformations.

The Human Darts like to embrace a loose punk/early bubble gum rock element, with neither of those genres fitting well as the core of inspiration seems to be coming from some lost 1960’s garage in Florida.

This is captured in the band’s current 4-song EP called, “Explicit Thoughts”

There is 'intentionally bad photoshop' for a punk aesthetic, and then there is just bad photoshop.

There is ‘intentionally bad Photoshop’ done for a punk aesthetic, and then there is just bad Photoshop.

The greasiest number here is the EP opener, “Tell My Sister”. Pumping on a Peter Gunn old-school rock riff, The Human Darts do have a penchant for taking the familiar, adding doses of other easily recognizable influences, and offering up a song that sounds like something you heard before, but didn’t hate.

 

“Zombie Man chant” has a Rev Horton Heat souped-up country with that splash of punk formula wrapped around mid-1960 traditional rock structures. The not-so-subtle psychedelic prog undercurrent of the Moog-like organ which appears for the solo illicits a vibe reminiscent of the 1962 Freddy Cannon classic, “Palisades Park”. One starts to get the feeling Mr. Zelk grew up with a lot of vinyl.

 

The band also offers a somewhat sterile version of “Hey Good Looking” from Johnny Cash on this release. It floats in a weird sonic space that is neither rock, nor country, nor punk… but more akin to, ‘backing track you hear that guy in the organ store at the mall jamming away to as you wonder how the fuck anyone actually sells enough organs out of a mall storefront to make a living?’ The answer is they don’t. I fear this cover might share a similar fate… especially when you are messing with a country god like Cash.

 

The closer, “Stitches” pops off with a surf-intro before dropping into some trite rhyme schemes broken apart by afore-mentioned surf-punk guitar noodling. The melodies are catchy enough, but the lyrics here could use some re-thinking. Perhaps the meaning is deeper to the author, but the poetry level here is junior high at best. That’s not to say it’s bad, but the guitar jams seem to deserve a better vocal hook to tie them together.

 

The opening two songs are the strongest on, “Explicit Thoughts” and shows The Human Darts at their most original, which is still incredibly derivative. But don’t confuse derivative for ‘bad’. There is obviously some technical ability here and a whimsical sense of song writing that is a call back to a more simple time when music wasn’t taken so damn seriously.

The Human Darts aim for fun, and in this, hit their mark.