It's tough being the first band on a four-band bill: The folks still filing in as you're playing are most likely not your fans. If you actually have some fans in town, they probably aren't even there, because who's going to pay $15 to see you play for 20 minutes? The crowd is there to see the bands playing later, and the best you can hope for is some polite applause from the people who get there early. Everyone going to see Face to Face, Snapcase and H2O at Mississippi Nights on Tuesday is strongly urged to be among those who get there early and catch the Explosion, because, judging from the band's latest record, Steal This (Revelation), they just might turn in the best show of the night, and 20 minutes is all they'll need.The typical Revelation band these days falls into the hoodie-wearing, extreme-skateboarding school of punk, but the Explosion hark back to the punk glory days of the late '70s and early '80s. Without looking or sounding needlessly retro, the band manages to call to mind "Coup d'Etat"-era Circle Jerks, with vocalist Matt Hock bellowing like a young Ian MacKaye. The five songs on the new 45 (or CD single, but c'mon, how punk is that?) are bursting with energy, enthusiasm and fun, especially the Bay City Rollers gone street-punk "E.X.P.L.O.S.I.O.N.," which consists of the band spelling out its name and then shouting, "Let's go!" The song is tailor-made for a sweaty crowd to sing along to. Here's hoping the sweaty crowd gets there early enough to do so.
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