While her friends are consumed with college life, Renee Phoenix of the punk/metal band The Explicits was able to find time to close the books and record her self-titled debut, due out independently on Explicit Records on April 8, 2008. As a Junior at The University of North Florida, she somehow balances achieving her English degree with the demanding schedule that comes along with playing in an up and coming band.
"The entire process was exciting for all of us," she describes of the recording of the album. "I'm a very impatient person so I couldn't wait for this project to be completed and blast it in my car."
Equal parts 70s punk, 80s punk and 00s screamo, The Explicits blend a frothy concoction that would make the Casualties pass out, Brody Dalle order something stiffer, and make Joan Jett a drinking buddy. Nonalcoholic beverages, of course (since the band are all under 21). With fierce and heavy guitars and rhythm section, Renee matches their intensity with her gravelly, otherworldly vocals, like a battle cry on the front lines.
"During downtime in studio, we would all do these 80's metal screams as a joke," she says. "We all couldn't stop laughing."
Recorded with Florida-based buzz-worthy producer Stan Martell (A Fall to Rise, Burn Season, Down Theory), The Explicits is an album packed with feisty, metallic, adrenaline-drenched punk. From the power chord-driven epic blast of "Indestructible" to the upbeat classical punk rock distortion-filled "Static", this debut contains the sort of street credibility that seems beyond Renee's youthful 20 years.
"I write what I feel like writing at the time instead of thinking, 'Hey, we're a punk band so we need to write a punk song, or a rock song, or whatever'," she says of the songwriting process.
She describes her favorite track, the speed-metal thrash of "Hollywood", in videogame terms.
"I picked that one to be the ending track on the record because I found the final parts of the song to be epic in a way, like the end of a great battle. Either that, or I've just been playing way too much Warcraft for my own good," she pauses, and then smirks, retracing her steps. "I'm a nerd, just forget I ever said that."
The Explicits' self-titled record will be released April 8, 2008 on Explicit Records. A Spring tour is being planned.
"Good old fashioned punk three piece with some twists. Well, for starters, this extremely raspy-voiced front man isn't a man at all. This girl can belt it; on top of that, lay down some heavy licks to match. The Explicits would easily have any punk icon nodding their head in approval. So even if you're not into the punk scene, you can appreciate what The Explicits have to offer." - Substream Magazine
“The Explicits' core sound is a dark, frenzied, metallic sort of punk that might call to mind old-school acts like The Accused (guitarist Renee Phoenix's awesome, guttural lead vocals are particularly menacing and effective) or Motorhead, but shades of different styles emerge from the mix; highlight "Idiopath" showcases a little Gainesvillean flavor, while the closing "Static" borrows from The Distillers and Rancid.”- Reax Magazine
“The Explicits... rock out a punk/metal hybrid that actually works.” - ReadJunk.com