By Ken Hunt
The origin of Montreal group Starvin Hungry is a noteworthy fable indeed. It began in Toronto with John Milchem and his one-man band. Eventually Milchem teamed up with his identical twin brother Glen and shortly afterward with drummer Jon Card and bassist Nick Sewell. Milchem moved to Montreal in 2000, where Starvin Hungry’s audience grew.
Although Burns has been criticized for lacking unity, each track has its own distinct flavour, from explosive opener “Ghost Witness” to the psychedelic “Well Below the Bottom.” Each song’s meticulous engineering has produced thoroughly entertaining music, listenable individually or as an album.
Starvin Hungry showcase a cutting, jagged style of punk rock that stands out fiercely against the mainstream. On tracks like “Ghost Witness” and “Chicken Fly,” the band wastes no time asserting its sound as quick, driving and semi-hypnotic, punctuated by wailing, energetic riffs. In a sea of lesser-known bands, Starvin Hungry has managed to keep on sailing without flying the conformity flag. A refreshingly scathing tribute to old-school punk rock with hints of funk and thrash at times, Cold Burns will rock any building to its rusty roots.