The timing couldn't be better, either. It's pretty safe, I think, to say that ska music in general has been stagnant on a creative level for quite some time. I'm of the opinion that just about every band, save for the masters, has relied on a sound rehashed from any one of the major eras of ska music. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it's impossible to deny that it's made for an incredible amount of horrible bands and records. In playing devil's advocate, there's a good chance that any outside observer would probably view the modern global ska scene as a murky cesspool of uninspired, unmotivated acts punctuated by a few gems. Effort has taken a back seat to hundreds of lazy attempts by half-assed bands.
No Torso, as I see it, is one of the very, very few bands to have actually gone back to the drawing board, and the result is something magnificent. It's a result similar to that of any of the aforementioned few bands that have taken the time and effort to rethink and re-imagine ska music and turned it into something wonderful. I'm reluctant as hell to name drop, but I can't resist drawing a parallel between No Torso and legends The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. Much in the same way that the unquestionably revolutionary Bostonians were able to craft a completely fresh sound built on the foundation laid by the true pioneer's of ska music, No Torso is setting a new creative standard for our generation.
Unlike a vast (and I mean vast) majority of young ska bands, No Torso presents themselves in a way that suggests an apparent knowledge for authentic, traditional ska and rocksteady. Combined with top-notch musicianship (especially for their age, some of them can't even drink in the US), this is what makes for an unforgettable record.
So, this is a lot of incredible hype, I know, but it's hard to hold back with these guys.