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Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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QUIT YOUR DAY JOB:
Sweden We Got A Problem: CD
A Swedish trio who proudly wear The Clash, The Talking Heads, and Gang Of Four on their sleeves. With no prior knowledge of who this band is or what their music sounds like, I was pleasantly surprised, both bobbing my head and tapping my toes. –mrz (Bad Taste)


TIA CARRERA:
Self-titled: CD
Despite the bad band name, this is some awesome heavy rock. Crushing, slightly meandering stoner rock that is all instrumental. It is excellently done and very hypnotic, not things I find myself saying about most of the heavy rock that has come out in the past five years. It has become a trend and most bands are half assed. This band is also saved by not having any lyrics, so no embarrassing attempts to be “deep.” The whole record pretty much sounds like that amazing nine minute closing track from Coping With the Urban Coyote by Unida. Could not recommend this more if you are a fan of heavy rock. –frame (Australian Cattle God)


RAIN CITY SHWILLERS:
Blood Dripping From A Six String: CD
This seems like the perfect band for the TKO Records crowd. One part Antiseen/Zeke/Confederacy Of Scum style and one part Bruisers/Wretched Ones style street punk. Nine songs recorded at Egg Studios in Seattle, so the sound quality is top notch. –frame (My Ruin, www.shwillers.com)


M.F.D.:
Full Volume: LP
Really cool story behind this one. John from Acme Records/Out Cold got in touch with the band about reissuing this record only to find out that they still had many copies left from the original pressing. So, Acme picked up the remaining sealed records from the original pressing and they are selling them to turn people on to an overlooked gem. Awesome simple songs that are the perfect sound of punk meeting hardcore. A lotta these songs have a very definite Zero Boys quality to them, which is the highest praise I can give. Some cool Freeze/Descendents style melodic punk leanings here as well. Produced by Tom Lyle from Government Issue, who also plays guitar. Some guitar from Keith Campbell from Black Market Baby as well. Their first record, Music for the Deaf is a great punk record too. This band were about a million times better than most of the ‘87-‘88 punk bands. A great, overlooked piece of the D.C. Hardcore puzzle. Check it out! –frame (Acme/DSI)


BAD REACTION:
Symptoms of Youth: LP
Killer snotty hardcore! Immediately brings Zero Boys to mind...do you know how rare and cool that is? This is exactly what I hope to hear when I put on a hardcore record. Perfect hardcore punk, simply perfect. It does not get any better than this. This is the biggest surprise I have had since I picked up that amazing Funeral Shock LP a few years back. Highest possible recommendation. This fucker Roolz!! –frame (Destroy All)


RADIO BIRDMAN:
Hungry Cannibal: 7”
A great single here!! One of the best tunes, “Hungry Cannibal’” off of Birdman’s great new record, Zeno Beach is on the A side. The flip is an even better tune called “Rock Bottom.” Even the songs that didn’t make Zeno Beach rule! Get this single and do not miss the full length. –frame (Steel Cage)


BLOWFLY:
Butt Pirate Luv: 7”
“Butt Pirate Luv” is a dirty take on the Heartbreakers “Pirate Love.” Playing is really good, the lyrics are good for one laugh and that’s about it. The flip song “F U in the A” is self explanatory. A real ass fest going on here, not that you would expect anything less from Blowfly. Novelty song fans will love it. –frame (Steel Cage)


RORY GALLAGHER:
Live At Montreaux: CD
Pretty weird to be reviewing something this middle of the road and classic rock for Razorcake. Rory Gallagher plays good, solid British blues rock and has for around thirty years. His early band Taste are awesome and rockin’. All the solo stuff that I have heard has been relatively good. This is a weird disc because it features live songs from 1975-85 at the Montreaux Festival in France. Seems to be no rhyme or reason why each song was picked. Enjoyable enough, but I will stick with the studio records. –frame (Eagle)


BRASS CASTLE:
Self-titled: CD
Heavy rock disc on Jucifer’s label from this Atlanta band. This is alright, but there is a lot of this being released right now and this just doesn’t stack up. Sounds like Bad Wizard, Cherry Valence, or Big Business, just not as good. Seems like ironic heavy rock whether that is the intention or not. –frame (Velocette)


MINKS, THEE:
Plaything: 7”
Philly’s garage punk badasses strike again! Two great garage punk rave ups and a cover of “Mama’s Boy“ by Ramones. This band always delivers and I can’t wait for another full length. Fans of Joan Jett, Downbeat 5, and The Smears will love Thee Minks. –frame (Steel Cage)


KEVIN K:
Rock’in’Roll Dynamite: CD
Kevin K is consistent as hell and always great! Same cool Johnny Thunders meets Ramones sound, same great tunes that stick in your head. Finally a cool looking cover, which is nice to see. Great re-working of “Call” by The Road Vultures (Kevin K’s old band) off their Fire It Up record. The song “Old School” might be the best tune he has ever done. –frame (Full Breack Kicks)


BULLCOCK:
Hog Nuts: CD
Look at the band name and the album title. Do you love Nashville Pussy, Hookers, and The Supersuckers? Lap it up, dood. –frame (Static)


CAESAR PINK & IMPERIAL ORGY:
Gospel Hymns For Agnostics & Atheists: CD
Nineties alterna-rock with a slight funk influence. Edie Brickell fans will wanna be all over this one. Only four songs, but that’s plenty. –frame (Chief Logan)


BLACK HELICOPTER:
Invisible Jet: CD
Boring indie rock on Thurston Moore’s label. Ex-members of Green Magnet School turn in some Shellac meets Sonic Youth songs. Never been a fan of this style. –frame (Ecstatic Peace)


SILVER:
World Against World: CD
Goddamn kids and their Pro Tools! This disc is full of Backyard Babies style songs with corporate screamo style production. Offensively slick, every song sounds the same, not a bit of life to be found here anywhere. Could be a real cool high energy glam sound if it had any life, character, or personality at all. Skip this and spring for the Chelsea Smiles or White Demons instead if you love this high energy glam sound. If you wanna hear what Turbonegro would sound like with no grit at all, jump on this. –frame (Bad Afro)


JESUS AND THE DEVIL:
Let Them Have It: CD
Seems like we might have some ex-hardcore kids who are getting into heavy rock here. This sounds like a band like Gluecifer or the Hookers with a slight hardcore influence. Not really my cuppa, but well done enough for what it is. –frame (Fudge Sickill)


INTERNATIONAL PLAYBOYS:
Cobra Blood Hangover: CD
Amped up hard rockin’ garage from Missoula, MT. Fans of Fireballs Of Freedom, Cherry Valence, and Federation X will wanna be all over this. Why this is not on Estrus, I have no idea, it seems like all they do is put out records like this these days. If you can’t get enough of the MC5 on overdrive sound, you are going to love this. –frame (Australian Cattle God)


LABOR PARTY:
I Bleed: CD
Pretty cool disc of Dead Boys style punk from this Phoenix band. There are hints of garage in places and some speedier parts, but for the most part this is rockin’ working persons punk. This actually brings to mind Wanda Chrome and the Leather Pharoahs the more I listen to it, which is high praise. Good solid three piece rockin’ punk, not enough of that around. Hope to see them making their way up the West Coast soon. –frame (Steel Cage)


JONESES:
Tits and Champagne: LP
Finally I have a chance to actually own a copy of this hard to find 1989 release. I had heard it over the years, but never actually come across a copy. Real good record here, if a little cover heavy. I can‘t get enough of those Joneses originals, so every cover song is just another Drake tune I am not getting the chance to hear. Small gripe, really, as the covers all smoke. Considering that a lot of sunset strip glam band copped their style and sound from the Joneses (esp. GNR), it is amazing to hear how raw and rockin’ and unaffected by the L.A. sound the Joneses were even in 1989. This is still just pure Chuck Berry meets New York Dolls and Aerosmith, just like all the great Joneses stuff. Watch for more Joneses reissues from Full Breach Kicks. –frame (Full Breach Kicks)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Everybody Loves Antiseen: 2 x CD
Tribute records are always hit or miss. If you like or love the band to whom the tribute is issued, such a record can either be confirmation of the band’s greatness and rock on its own, or it can come off as a complete dud because it simply isn’t that band. So, I will not offer judgment in that regard. If you’re into Antiseen, I’m pretty sure you’ll like this—fifty-seven recordings of their most brutal offerings, and of course there is quite a variety in the way that the tunes are presented. (That’s one of the best things about tribute records—those few tracks that are recorded in a completely different fashion than the original.) And now that I’ve heard this, I’m singing a new tune when it comes to Antiseen; this reviewer is really starting to like the Boys from Brutalsville (I can’t stop singing “Justifiable Homicide” at work when dealing with shitty customers). But, returning to my opening thoughts, I think that this one really hits. –The Lord Kveldulfr (TKO)


SOME ACTION:
The Band that Sucked the Life out of Rock’n’Roll and Killed Itself in the Proces: CD
Apparently this record has been relatively long awaited. If you’ve been awaiting for it, I’m pretty sure that you won’t be terribly disappointed—eleven stinging tracks of dirty, trashy rock’n’roll. This is the kind of stuff that gets my blood rollicking and keeps me sitting on the deck drinking beer till four in the morning and listening to it over and over and over. This record comes off, at least to me, as one of the most unpretentious recordings that I have ever heard; Some Action’s one fundamental purpose of existence appears to be to rock my socks off and leave me crumpled and pummeled and begging for more. What else can I say? Well done, men! –The Lord Kveldulfr (Gigantic)


REDDMEN, THE:
Arsenic Ballads: CD
Very poppy, but in the good way because these guys are too good to make it big on the radio. Buzzsaws and whiny-sounding vocals, sort of in line with stuff like the Lillingtons. I liked it. Granted, it didn’t make me want to spend four days in a cave with nothing but this to listen to, but I haven’t gotten tired of it yet, and I really look forward to what these guys are gonna do in the future, and I want to get a hold of their first record, too. Solid stuff from the South Dakota plains. –The Lord Kveldulfr (Not Bad)


HUNNS, DIE:
You Rot Me: CD
I was excited to see that this was gonna be on my playlist, because I can’t think of any record with Duane Peters that I haven’t liked. Much to my surprise, this was much better than I first anticipated. Yes, it still has much of the sound of a Peters band, but this record takes it to a new level because (dare I say it?) it is a much more mature sound than what I was expecting. And not “mature” in the sense of getting too old to rock properly. I get the feeling that Mr. Peters and Co. have been listening to old Nick Cave records of late…there’s a level of quiet malevolence running through this. In addition, this record has a greater variety of sounds on it; there is standard Hunns anthemic punk rock to be sure, but many of the sounds have a poppier feel to it than I would have expected, and it works brilliantly in this humbler observer’s opinion. And Peters’ snarling vocal antics are not the only showcase here; more time is devoted to the musicianship and vocal harmonies. This record is polished, but not in a slick, over-produced fashion. Great. –The Lord Kveldulfr (Volcom)


NIGHT RALLY:
Preston Family Crest: CD
A friend gave me this CD to listen to, saying it was some friends of hers. I never really know what to make of that and then I’ll often feel like I have to lie about what I thought of it, because usually I hate CDs that I get by a band via some friend. That’s not so much the case here although I didn’t really like this album, either. After dozens of listens I feel very much the same way I did the first time I listened to it: indifferent. I’ve tried and tried and while the band’s indie rock sound had some catchy, fun aspects to it, there was also this more serious, ambient part that kind of ran as an undertone throughout the album. That is to say there was lots of distortion and reverb on the guitars. The album is divided in two parts with the first half being eight songs and then a minute of silence before the final seven tracks kick in. Besides one of those weird, avant-garde collaborations you might come across in some college town that will only play at some fucked up coffeehouse, I can’t think of much else to compare Night Rally to. And maybe that’s a good thing after all. –kurt (Night Rally)


MIGHTY OHIO, THE:
The Engine Sings: CD
Steps to making a (good) album: 1) Learn to sing. 2) Try to work towards an original sound. 3) Write good songs. 4) Record songs. Guess which of these was the only one this band did? If you said number four, you are correct. The one positive of this album is that it’s a benefit, with some of the proceeds going to Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy. –kurt (The Scientist And The Duke)


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