The Interrupters are a ska/punk band from Los Angeles, CA, formed in 2011. They are Aimee Interrupter (vocals), Kevin Bivona (guitar), Justin Bivona (bass), and Jesse Bivona (drums). The Interrupters are signed to Rancid frontman Tim Armstrong’s Hellcat Records. Members of The Interrupters previously played with Armstrong’s side project Time Timebomb and Friends.
Bound by their rebel spirit and deep love for 2 Tone, The Interrupters make super-high-energy ska-punk that’s equal parts catchy and confrontational.
With Aimee Interrupter’s gravelly voice and Tim Armstrong’s undeniable influence, The Interrupters sound like Armstrong’s ex Brody Dalle [ex-The Distillers] fronting Rancid on the punkier tracks or Brody Dalle fronting The Specials on the more 2 Tone-esque tracks.
The Interrupters (2014). Hellcat/Epitaph Records. Produced by Tim Armstrong. 13 tracks. Choice cuts: “Take Back the Power”, “Liberty”, “Can’t Be Trusted”. Other good cuts: “Family” (feat. Tim Armstrong), “A Friend Like Me”, “This Is the New Sound”, “Easy On You”, “Treat the Youth Right” (Jimmy Cliff cover), “Haven’t Seen the Last of Me”, “White Noise”, “Judge Not” (Bob Marley cover), “Last Call”. The rest: “The Metro” (Berlin cover).
“The 11th Hour” (2015). A cover of the Rancid song from …And Out Come the Wolves (1995). Featured on Hooligans United: A Tribute to Rancid.
Say It Out Loud (2016). Hellcat/Epitaph Records. Produced by Tim Armstrong. 14 tracks. Choice cuts: “She Got Arrested”, “Media Sensation”, “Good Things”, “Control”. Other good cuts: “On A Turntable”, “Babylon”/”Jenny Drinks”, “Loyal”, “By My Side”, “Divide Us”, “Phantom City” (feat. Tim Timebomb), “The Prosecutor”, “The Valley”, “You’re Gonna Find A Way Out”.
Frontwoman Aimee Interrupter (aka Aimee Allen) was a solo artist prior to forming The Interrupters. Her song “Revolution” was used as the theme song for The WB’s short-lived TV series Birds of Prey (2002-03). Read my previous post on Aimee Allen (here) and my previous posts on The Interrupters (here/here).
My thoughts… The Interrupters are best known to the uninitiated for their song “Take Back the Power” which was featured in, like, a gazillion T-Mobile commercials in 2015. What does a song about standing up against government oppression have to do with cell phones? Well, it’s all in the first line: “What’s your plan for tomorrow?” Get it? Now, despite the fact that every time I listen to “Take Back the Power” I think of T-Mobile, the song is still my favorite by The Interrupters, and it was my favorite even before I started hearing it in those commercials. The band’s self-titled debut is an awesome ska-punk album but the follow-up Say It Out Loud is just as good or even (a little bit) better. Say It Out Loud sounds (a little bit) less like Rancid – not that there’s anything wrong with that! – and more like The Interrupters. However, Aimee Interrupter still sounds like Brody Dalle but there’s definitely nothing wrong with that! “Good Things”, from Say It Out Loud, is one of the band’s catchiest tunes. It’s melody kind of reminds me of Paul Simon‘s 1973 hit “Kodachrome”. Maybe it’s just me! Oh, and at the end of The Interrupters‘ cool cover of Rancid‘s “The 11th Hour”, the band briefly kicks into Rancid‘s “Roots Radicals”. I would love to hear them finish that song! The Interrupters, if nothing else, are my favorite female-fronted ska-punk band – followed by Dance Hall Crashers.