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Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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POSSIBLE SUSPECT:
So Sick of Your Dependency: CD
You’d almost swear that Chi Pig of SNFU is singing here, but instead it’s a guy named Mark from the Netherlands. The first song is decent; not a bad listen at all. By the time I got halfway through the album, I realized that it’s quite possible that they only recorded one bass and drum track and just play each song on guitar over it. It’s repetitive, yup repetitive. I say repetitive. Hey! Hey! Hey! –megan (Mad Butcher)


POLYSICS:
Neu: CD
The American release of Polysics’ second album, originally released three years ago and only now being domestically released thanks to the kindness and diligence of Asian Man, and oh what a record it is. The Devo influence is still firmly in place, but the tunes seem less melodic and infused with more intensity, making them just plain rock out harder than their previous long player, Hey Bob! My Friend. More succinctly, this is the equivalent of having Boojie Boy rape your eardrum with an old Casio keyboard. Hunt down either of album, play it loud and play it often, ‘cause Polysics rule. –jimmy (Asian Man)


PLANET SMASHERS:
Mighty: CD
EEK! EGADS!!!! HOW DID THIS SKA CRAP END UP IN MY HOUSE?!? QUICK, OPEN THE WINDOW!!!!! CHUCK THE FUCKER OUT BEFORE IT KILLS OFF THE GOLDFISH!!!!! –jimmy (www.stomprecords.com)


PLAN A PROJECT:
Self-titled: CD
Twelve songs of very fast, upbeat, punky Op Ivy type of music with lots of singalong gang vocals included and intelligent lyrics. Even some talk of unity is included in some of their lyrics. Okay, these guys are a lot like Op Ivy (they even cover ‘‘She’s a Bombshell” as a hidden track), but they are no ripoff. They are inspired, if you will. If this kind of music is your thing, I would definitely recommend this record. –Mike Beer –todd (Go Kart)


PHOENIX FOUNDATION, THE:
These Days: CD
First off, this record label is called Newest Industry, which is a Hüsker Dü song. The Newest Industry logo is a spoof of the Hüsker Dü logo. So who does the Phoenix Foundation sound like? Gee, I wonder. The songs aren’t as good or nearly as diverse, but the basic ingredients are there. The songs don’t sound tired or boring at all even though they all go at about the same tempo, but for the most part, they’re another band that is right on the edge of being great. I have the same problem with Gunmoll: some of their songs are spot on, but they never quite explode all over the place. Hopefully, this isn’t the last we’ll hear from this band. –Not Josh –Guest Contributor (Newest Industry)


PELICAN:
Self-titled: CDEP
Righteous one-riff stoner metal, like Sleep with no singing and an extra finger for the little guitar strings. Occasionally gets a little too precious and abandons the glorious monotony that really makes the form, but with no guitar solos per se they’re still way ahead of the pack. And “Pelican”? That ain’t no metal bird. Perfect. –Cuss Baxter (Hydra Head)


PATH OF DESTRUCTION:
1:00 AM: 7"
I tried this puppy out on two different speeds. At 33 1/3, they were a competent, if not particularly interesting hardcore unit. At 45, they got amazingly better, tighter and the singer sounded like a psychopath sucking on helium. Is this a good review? If you consider someone saying your record sounds better at the wrong speed, then yes, this is a good review. –jimmy (Havoc)


PARADISE ISLAND:
Lines Are Infinitely Fine: CD
Arty, mellow, boring. –jimmy (Dim Mak)


OIL!:
Red, White & Boots + Bills to Pay b/w Pullin’ on the Boots: 7”
There are exactly two things that continuously propel America to the head of the pack on this mongrel burg we call Earth: Number one is our nation’s unwavering dedication to quality footwear in the workplace; Number two is our national obsession with, and our renowned proficiency at, the game of soccer. Oil! celebrates both crucial facets of our national character most magnificently, and who shall say them nay?! Stand tall, America! Oil! has got your back during the penalty kicks! BEST SONG: “Bills to Pay” BEST SONG TITLE: “Red, White & Boots” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: This record would have been better if all three songs were called “KILL DAVID FUCKING BECKHAM RIGHT NOW” –norb (Noma Beach)


ONE CAR PILE-UP:
Worst Episode Ever: CD
My mood swings swing wider than a home run hitter in baseball. This issue, I’m not that into pop punk. I guess I have a little bit of pent up anger. Maybe, I’m just a big asshole who should give up music. But I do sometimes see the light at the end of the tunnel. One thing for sure, American pop punk is flooded with cookie cutter, paint-by-the-numbers bands. Something I find interesting is if a band is not from the USA, I seem a little more interested. I have come to really appreciate a release by Crackle. They seem to put out pop punk that is not only energetic, but raw at the same time. There have been very few releases that I have not liked. What caught my attention of this release was that this band took matters in their own hands. They worked hard and long to save and build a home studio because they never liked the results of their recordings when they contracted a third party to record them. I have been there before. I don’t know how hard it is to build your own studio. I have been fortunate enough to have friends and relatives lately who have the gear and the know-how. But one thing I do know is it’s not cheap! Now in their own hands, they spend four long years recording a new album’s worth of material and re-recording songs they were not satisfied with in the past. The result is quite impressive. The songs have a strong Propagandhi meets Consumed sound and structure. The production is solid but not overproduced. Patience was their friend because I have no complaints about the mix. The guitars are up front but not overpowering. The bass and drum sound is solid. The vocals are in the right place and everything sounds individual and at the same time together. Their first attempt at self-recording is impressive. I’m looking forward to hearing more. This is their best effort to date. –don (Crackle)


OPERATION MAKEOUT:
Hang Loose: CD
Fun time punk from the Great White North – a three piece, featuring two lovely ladies and one fine gentleman – singing fun, enjoyable, borderline pop punk songs. They remind me a bit of Sleater-Kinney, musically, if Sleater-Kinney would have stuck with the more fast paced punk rock of their first album. Operation Makeout has lots of breakdowns that remind me of Wire. Vocalists Jesse (bass) and Katie (guitar) have such different voices that they work so well together. Scratchy-voiced Jesse, couples with smooth sounding Katie, and it’s really nice how they switch lead from song to song. We even get vocals thrown in by the fine drummer, Anna. The album, overall, is terribly enjoyable and fun, with lyrics that are poetic and even arty, yet touchable (as in I can relate man.. I can!). The most standout tracks are “Current Events,” “Lost, Unwanted… But Still Nice,” and the oh, so cute “Contents.” There is also a sweet hidden track remix of “You and Me Geometry,” by schizo-samplehungry-electro-noise monger Secret Mommy (aka Andy from the Red Light Sting). Operation Makeout give me high hopes for the future of punk rock. Thank you very much, Canada. –Sarah Shay (Mint)


OF DEATH:
Build a Bridge and Get Over It: CD
I thought clubbing seals was all in good fun until I had to hear it recorded over lame art-core tracks. God lord, what made them think this was okay? –megan (Alone)


NOTHING FAMOUS:
self-titled: CD
Mall-punk for the masses! Vocals pulled way forward, drums are lost, super-simple riffs, super forgettable band. –megan (Cheapskate)


NINJA GUN:
Pork’s Not Dead: CD-R
First of all, I almost threw this away. When I opened it up, there was a small pile of what looked and smelled like moldy used bandages. I was pretty fucking disgusted until I read the little note that came with this and I realized that they were pouches of smokeless tobacco, which is still disgusting. Anyway, the first song sounds kind of like a less noisy, more boring Archers of Loaf, the second song sounds like the Bon Jovi stuff from that cowboy movie he did the soundtrack for, and the other two are country songs that aren’t as good as any country music that I listen to but still better than Brooks and Dunn. So there. –Not Josh –Guest Contributor (no address)


NEW BREED, THE:
Port City Rebels: CD
The New Breed play eight songs of very nice, well done, tuneful singalong street punk /Irish style songs with lots of hooks and melody. There is even some mandolin on here! Good lyrics about hanging out, drinking, and other stuff. The vocalist reminds me of the guy from Youth Brigade at times. Anyway this CD is really good and I would highly recommend it. –Mike Beer –Guest Contributor (Longshot)


NERF HERDER:
My EP: CD
A goofy band that has a soft spot in my heart. If I listen to their stuff more than once, I’m usually entertained. It’s goofy pop punk that I find more humorous than modern day Guttermouth or Vandals. This is a re-release of an old EP with bonus tracks. If you like the first two Vandals LPs or are just a plain nerd and love the Weezer, pull the bucks out of the pocket protector and splurge. –don (Honest Don’s)


NADA, EL:
Nothing for Nobody: CD
OC hardcore from a band that sounds like a slowed-down, simplistic Dr. Know. –jimmy (www.fingerrecords.com)


MURDER WEAPON:
Nervous Wreck: CD
Fuck heavy metal, no matter how fast it’s played. –jimmy (Martyr)


MUCH THE SAME:
Quitters Never Win: CD
This band sounds like the American version of the Consumed. –don (A-F)


MOUSEROCKET:
Missing Teeth: 7”
Fronted by Alicja Trout of The Lost Sounds, this project is more straight forward, marginally garagey, and, dare I say, pretty. For the most part, it’s liquid and laid back – with a few spasms – but what the hell, I like it. I can’t provide you with many helpful signposts, except the fact they cover “Alone Again Or,” which I know from the Damned, and it’s softer around the edges, but simultaneously more desperate, which is quite a difficult thing to accomplish if you think about it. –todd (Wrecked ‘Em)


MOTORAMA:
No Bass Fidelity: CD
White Stripes with drum machine, chick singer, an extra guitarist, and way too many no wave records in their collection. –jimmy (www.vidalocarecords.com)


MOTION CITY SOUNDTRACK:
I Am the Movie: CD
I was real ready to not like this, but they manage to hook you in with great melodies and pull you in with that Moog sound that, if used properly, can make a person giddy. Better than Ozma and in the same league with Weezer. –don (Epitaph)


MISS LUDELLA BLACK:
The Skull of a Man: 7”
A former Delmonas/Headcoatee hooks up with a former Headcoats’ new band, namely the Masonics, and they crank out three bleak songs naturally up to their eyeballs in ‘60s trappings. The results are, of course, top-notch, but I am glad I don’t own a straight razor. –jimmy (Smartguy)


MISFITS:
Project 1950: CD
I can’t tell you how bad it is sitting here listening to this. This blew any good thoughts I have of the band from the early ‘80s out the toilet. It’s ‘50s covers, basically done verbatim with the Jerry Only touch. The only redeeming factor of this release is on the bonus DVD – not the videos of these covers, but the five bonus videos. The first is the singer of Balzac singing with this incarnation of the Misfits. The second and third is Jerry Only singing with Balzac on a couple of songs. Then the last two videos are strictly Balzac. Someone out there will like this. It’s just not me. –don (Misfits)


MICO:
Outside the Unbearable Grows: CD
Emo/ alternative rock stuff that doesn’t stand out from any other band doing this, except that this is on G7, so I guess it’s left wing emo/ alternative rock stuff. I care lots. –Not Josh –Guest Contributor (G7 Welcoming Committee)


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