album: Can't Tell Me No - Summer Cannibals
Casual lip service promising support will no longer suffice. On Can’t Tell Me No, the latest from Summer Cannibals, the band has viciously arrived to tear down every expectation you have of how one has to act; they’re here to fight back against supposed supporters, you know, those who pretend to be part of a cause, but have their own agenda. On the album, Summer Cannibals stand its ground and shout its message —abuse, in any form, is long past overdue as acceptable behavior, particularly when it comes to the music industry.
As Jessica Bordeaux detailed in an interview with TGE, Can’t Tell Me No wasn’t meant to exist. After someone had threatened to take credit for a previously finished album, and personally threatened Bordeaux, the singer teamed up with bandmate and her partner, Cassi Blum to create an entirely new recording in a matter of weeks. Backstory behind this masterpiece aside, Can’t Tell Me No, as one could easily guess from the title, is a rallying cry. The record is one giant middle finger to those that continue to stand behind “false anthems of empowerment,” and it’s also a message of hope to others that might be going through similar situations.
It begins with “False Anthem,” a lighting-fast rip that takes direct aim at those that don’t mind standing behind false platforms to reach fame. The album’s unstoppable tempo is apparent from the outset of this track, and as the rest of the instrumental elements — including guitar and drums — come tearing it, it’s easy to hear that on this go-round, nothing will stand in the way of Summer Cannibals shouting their lungs out, and sharing this message. “Can’t Tell Me No” and “Behave” also come out swinging, using powerful instrumentals and walloping fuzz that’s meant to send disbelievers and those calling for unnecessary change packing.
In an era of #MeToo, Can’t Tell Me No feels more necessary than ever, and perhaps what’s more stirring about this story is the resilience that shines through. Despite what happened, Bordeaux has risen above it, and as singles including the waltz turned wallop of “Like I Used To” and the slowed down beauty of “Into Gold” demonstrate, Summer Cannibals aren’t going anywhere. It may take some effort (“pull myself out of the dark), but as the final line on the album declares, “I’m outta the dark and back into gold.”