At five seven, with red hair and a surface area that’s now more tattoo than skin, Frank Carter you’d say makes for an unlikely ally of those advocating for issues related to gender fluidity. And yet the former Gallows front man has revealed that much of the anger and aggression of his early career was ‘Just misdirected energy’, remembering himself as ‘the epitome of trying to present a tough guy image just to be left alone.’ Now his openness is in the context of the often latently macho environment of punk, admirable, in revealing; ‘I’m equal parts feminine as I am masculine, and I find a lot of strength in vulnerability.’
For the avoidance of doubt however it’s worth stating here that Sticky isn’t Frank Carter’s Drag Race. Instead the pent up frustration of eighteen lost pandemic months are used as a jump off for tight, hard, in-your-face songs that fuse punk and grime into a bristling cocktail of self destruction and hedonism gone bad.
On it’s own this might’ve been a matter of taste, but this minicab is full of guests; Joe Talbot for instance mostly does what Joe Talbot does on the dystopian My Town, whilst Lynks almost steals the show on Go Get A Tattoo (‘So ink me!’) and Cassyette makes Off With His Head a buzzsawed, sociopathic duet. The best comes last though; rolling over in a couple of takes, Bobby Gillespie has transformed closer Original Sin, performing the sort of visitation you receive at 4 a.m. when you’re lost, a millions hours from sober and looking straight into your soul. Sticky is messy, but on it Frank Carter & The Rattlenakes are what they are, not what you think they are, or what you think they should be.
You can read a full review here.