This Is Theft – This Is Theft

I remember having my Grifter stolen when I was about 8. Proper fucked off, I was. Now that was theft.

This, however, is not theft.

It’s more like ummm… borrowing. And that’s not a bad thing, because This Is Theft‘s eponymously titled debut EP strangely happens to be one of the most original records I’ve heard in a while. Taking elements of The Hives, The White Stripes, Audioslave, The Strokes, The Arctic Monkeys, Joy Division and The Doors, and occasionally whipping them up with the kind of low key, low-fi ramblings that remind me of Centro-Matic, Newcastle’s This Is Theft could be onto something special.

Opening stomper, The Menace Of The Storm, owes a lot to The Arctic Monkeys. Close your eyes and you can almost picture Alex Turner et al (before they had girls’ hair), only with a whole lot more northern swagger about them. We like that. Track 2, In December, jarringly pits The Doors against Cud in an offbeat naked mud wrestle where the winner is whoever does the best Lee Van Cleef impression. Next up, Mad Fad Woman takes another Arctics-esque riff and lashes it to the floorboards with a handful of northern nails – this is a track that doesn’t need messing with. And last but certainly not least, Awake To Sleep pins melodic guitars onto a vocal that could almost have made Ian Curtis smile – it’s like Joy Division on 40mg of Prozac, twice daily.

All in all, a pretty chunky, solid opener for one of Newcastle’s fastest rising bands. In fact, it’s almost as chunky and solid as my Grifter was.

You can find out more about This Is Theft, and listen to the tracks at

By Barry Bell on May 3, 2010

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