Definitely at the forefront of the esteemed “Band That Should Be in a Sprite Commercial” race, the Pilfers combine all of the sudsy aspects of standard-issue ska, punk, reggae, and hardcore, and crank out exactly what you’d expect: a well-produced, slick and melodic record that would find its niche comfortably on the shelf next you’re your older, slighty-jockish brother’s Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish CDs.
Like the aforementioned bands, the Pilfers aren’t bad per say (in fact, many tunes here are quite catchy), they just sour after the fourth or fifth song due to a combination of unachieved expectations and fatigue from an overzealous Bosstones-patched listener. Containing cred among their ranks (singer Coolie Ranx used to front NYC’s Toasters, others have played with Bim Skala Bim, Skinnerbox, et. al.) and better-than-average lyrics work in the Pilfers’ favor, rather than aiding in their being written off as another loser ska-punk act, yet the heavy-handed ragamuffin toasts bruised my ears after only one listen. Elsewhere, horns and organs flirt with generally tasteful results, yet I just could not successfully engage myself with Chawalaleng, which is not to say that your brother won’t like it.
Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/pilfers-chawalaleng/