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The Joys of Living 2008-2010

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Album Review

The Joys of Living: 2008-2010 compiles tracks recorded by the no-frills, punk-influenced Brit band Sharks during the group's first two years. As such, it essentially works as a debut for the band in the States, for listeners who might not be familiar with Sharks' bare-bones rock. Also included here are two newly recorded cuts that fit nicely into the band's sound. Formed in Leamington Spa, England in 2007, the band centers around singer/songwriter James Mattock whose gruff, flat vocal style brings to mind a mix of the Clash's Joe Strummer and Social Distortion's Mike Ness. As such, the tracks on Joys of Living are plug-in-and-play-style rockers as much in keeping with the working-class '70s pub rock of band's like the Stranglers and Dr. Feelgood as with the such Oi! bands as the Angelic Upstarts. Furthermore, such tracks as the newly minted "Sweet Harness" and the anthemic "It All Relates" evince a kind of spiritual unity with such equally working-class but uniquely American artists as the Replacements and Bruce Springsteen. In that sense, Sharks stand their ground well against such similarly inclined contemporaries as the Gaslight Anthem and the Hold Steady. Ultimately, as the last track on the album — the bleakly titled "The Light at the End of the Tunnel Is Hell" — points out, Sharks have a knack for catchy rock with a darkly sardonic bite.

Customer Reviews

Stole the show...

Saw them open for Chuck Ragan and Social D @ Ram's Head 5/13/11. They blew everyone away! Great stage presents and a rockin' song set! Wish they had more time to play. Chuck Ragan was like a wet blanket after them!

Great Stuff!!!

This album is soo good, very Clash-esque with more edge.... Love it!!!

Amazing New Talent

Saw and met these folks tonight with Chuck Ragan. They put on an amazing show... one of the best new bands I've heard in YEARS. If you enjoy some good old school punk like the ramones, clash, and sex pistols I recommend looking into these guys!


Formed: 2007 in Leamington Spa, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '10s

Sharks are a punk-influenced British band who make a kind of no-nonsense pub rock. Formed in Leamington Spa, England in 2007, the band centers around singer/songwriter James Mattock. Sharks released several EPs, including 2008's Shallow Waters and 2010's Show of Hands. In 2011, these releases were compiled on The Joys of Living: 2008-2010, which also featured two previously unreleased tracks. In 2013, Sharks returned with...
Full Bio
The Joys of Living 2008-2010, Sharks
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Customer Ratings