Welcome to Razorcake | DIY Punk Music | Punk Bands | Punk Rock Bands | Punk Magazine Welcome to Razorcake | DIY Punk Music | Punk Bands | Punk Rock Bands | Punk Magazine
 

























Record Reviews

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

| 0-9| A| B| C| D| E| F| G| H| I| J| K| L| M |

| N| O| P| Q| R| S| T| U| V| W| X| Y| Z|

Below are some recently posted reviews.

RSS Feed

VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Careful What You Step in Vol. 2: 7”
Nine songs by nine bands—ranging from just about a minute to not quite two minutes in length—this thing is a total tease. Just as you are getting a feel for a song or band, it’s over and on to the next band. That being said, this is a very cohesive collection, and punk as fuck. Well done.  –Jackie Rusted (48th Avenue Studios)


SYNTHETIC ID:
Escapement: 7”
This is a really interesting package. The sleeve is made of fancy archival paper and has been splattered with paint. There was also a little strip of paper (not unlike an obi strip) around the record itself that was also paint splattered. There is also some kind of foil wristwatch thing that I am pretty sure is chocolate in the middle. What about the music, you say? Think along the lines of some of that angular, early-’90s Dischord Records stuff and you would be on the right track. By the last song, “Tabula Rasa,” I was hooked. This is great stuff!  –ty (Crime On The Moon)


SWINGIN’ UTTERS:
Fistful of Hollow: LP
I cannot say enough about how much this band has meant to me since I first heard 1998’s Five Lessons Learned as a junior in high school. Swingin’ Utters have always represented a raw, unapologetic mix of worlds: salty drunks and dignified poets, a working class band with leather jacket-sporting teenage hearts and minds. It has been nearly twenty years since the release of Swingin’ Utters’ fantastic debut, The Streets of San Francisco, and they are still among punk’s finest songwriting teams. Guitarist Darius Koski and frontman Johnny “Peebucks” Bonnel have, once again, teamed with One Many Army leader Jack Dalrymple, longtime drummer Greg McEntee, and bassist Miles Peck to produce a punk rock, pub rock, folk punk gem of an album. Long live the Utter Army!  –John Mule (Fat )


SWEET EMPIRE:
Old Ideas Keep Fighting Us: CD/LP
The twenty-eight minutes of music on Old Ideas Keep Fighting Us is straight-up pop punk. I totally appreciate Sweet Empire singing about issues such as animal rights, environmentalism, and the war on drugs. But I have to say that it’s been a long time since I’ve heard such generic, dispassionate music where the band is singing about issues that should require some urgency, anger, and fury. Who knows, though—perhaps this message will get through to some kids who wouldn’t otherwise listen to hardcore. However, I think I’ll stick with the thrash-punk Propagandhi’s been doing on their last few albums. It has a political message that speaks to me with an intensity to match.  –kurt (Shield/Gunner)


STRAIGHT ARROWS:
Rising: LP
‘60s garage pop expertly executed by these Australians. Bouncy, but not without its freakier moments. This is the soundtrack for the reverb-drenched, black turtleneck lifestyle. If you’re a fan of the type of music Hozac has become known to release, you will dig this.  –Daryl Gussin (Hozac)


STORMTROOPER:
I’m a Mess: 7” + CD
Stormtrooper is one of the many proto-punk bands, in this case one from the UK, that perpetually wrench punk-origin timelines and oddly entrenched myths that it popped up out of nowhere. Originally recorded as part of a demo in 1975, “I’m a Mess” and its flip, “It’s Not Me,” the single under scrutiny here was issued in 1977, after the band had ceased to be, no doubt in an attempt to earn a few quid off the by-then raging punk phenomenon. The title track is a nice bit of sloppy, sludgy stompin’, an easy fit into punk’s confines, while the latter has a bit more of a trad rock vibe to it. Included with this reissue, along with a patch, is a CD with additional tracks from the 1975 demo, a few tracks from a 1978 recording (including a nice working of “I’m on Fire,” released a year later by punk stalwarts Chelsea, which included former Stormtrooper bassist Geoff Myles in its ranks), a 2003 rerecording of “I’m a Mess,” and a number of tracks pulled from a rehearsal tape tacked on the end for the punters that need everything a band plops onto tape. It’s also limited to five hundred, so get to searchin’.  –jimmy (Cleopatra)


STICKERS:
Swollen: LP
Swollen is the debut from the band Stickers, from Seattle, who waste no time in presenting an early ‘80s U.K. post-punk vibe on this LP. Vocally, I’m taken back in an Au Pairs meets a howling Jeffrey Lee Pierce kind of way while musically I’m hearing more of a Wire/Gang Of Four influence, heavy on the low end with a plodding whirlwind of bass and guitars with an occasional skronk from a saxophone. On first listen I didn’t really “get it,” but with repeated listens it keeps getting better and better.  –Mark Twistworthy (End Of Time, endoftimerecords.com)


STELLA:
Big Table No People: Cassette
If you like a good deal of melody in your music, you might not like this tape. That said, if you are getting ready to rob a bank and need to get psyched up, this could be just the thing. Skilled, calculated, dissonant.  –Bianca (New Village Tapes, newvillagetapes.com)


SPACE RAFT:
Self-titled: LP/CD
Revamped ‘70s pop rock. Has me thinking Elephant Six takes on Harry Nilsson. The record is accessible with pop rock sounds and middling amounts of ‘90s alt power pop and, of course, touches of psychedelic pop. It stays pretty clean, getting dusty here and there, but still clean. Except for one ill-advised dingy track on the back. Sounded like a bad take on a Sabbath song. Like an Elephant Six band trying to interpret Nilsson covering Sabbath. Ambitious, but it just doesn’t work. Like I was saying, nothing offensive outside of that faux pas. File under Barista Rock?  –Vincent Battilana (Dusty Medical / Bachelor)


SOUNDS OF THREAT:
Creature of Habit: CD
Las Vegas, Nevada: desert city that obliterates energy resources, water resources, wallets, lungs, livers, and laws. Its only historical redeeming quality being the genesis of criminally overlooked punk band M.I.A. I hold a deep loathing for Las Vegas and its stale, dry, nosebleed-inducing forced air. Yet I visit annually, fourteen years running, for P.R.B. Glutton for punishment? Hardly. Just can’t resist competitive bowling (2010 champ!) and the great bands that B.Y.O. continually gets to play the thing. Anyway, there are apparently native Las Vegas punk bands, and Sounds Of Threat is one of them. Solid, straightforward punk rock, kind of reminiscent of the Randumbs, played as fast and loose as punks at a Blackjack table at 3:00 AM. So, yes, there is something for all the Vegas punx the other 361 days a year.  –Chad Williams (Squidhat)


SNOOZER:
Cottage Cheese: Cassette
I suspect it’s going to be hard to separate this band from Sunny Day Real Estate— and, through transitive property, from emo—because of the singer’s vocals, which share Jeremy Enigk’s high pitch and inflection. It’s a shame if listeners do fall into this trap, because Snoozer is a band worthy of repeated listens. There are traces of late ‘90s indie stuff like Built To Spill throughout. The last song is an epic sprawl, with finger-picked segments leading the way to bombast and release. I’m not crazy about the recording of this one: it flattens the band’s attack and renders some potentially ass-kicking passages fangless. Still, a band with ideas and execution who probably kill live.  –Michael T. Fournier (Ranch)


SKINNY GENES:
Meh: 7”
Skinny Genes skillfully repurposes a traditionally teenage genre for the quarter life crisis or dirty thirty dread, complete with Simpsons references, but leaving the pizza and disdain for one’s hometown behind. Instead, late twenties anxiety around making it, fitting in, working shitty jobs, and juggling fair weather friends takes over. Meh takes the earnest hardcore of New York peers like Iron Chic, ups the pop quotient, and suffuses it with the emotive disaffection of Weezer. Skinny Genes is Azeem “Ace” Sajid, a key member of beloved pop punk stalwarts House Boat and The Steinways. On Meh, he steps out and literally does it all himself. Ace sings and plays all of the instruments on each track, showcasing his impressive mastery of songwriting. This guy knew exactly what sound he wanted and how to create it, cranking out intelligent bubblegum with a wry sense of humor. “Comfortably Dumb” and “No Service” are standout songs, both featuring memorable and reassuring lines like, “I suck at being a grownup,” and, “Should have known I’d fuck it up somehow.” I hear influences from the Lookout! Records portfolio here, particularly the Queers. Meh moves at an obscenely fast clip, gripping the listener’s attention with urgency. It’s as if this record was made by an otherwise milquetoast nerd guy who is accustomed to bottling up his emotions, but one day, he just couldn’t take the wage grind anymore and walked into the studio. This is a perfect record for getting oneself out of self-doubt fog on a shitty day, and I look forward to hearing whatever Ace churns out next.  –Claire Palermo (Bloated Kat, bloatedkatrecords@gmail.com, bloatedkatrecords.bandcamp.com)


SIN 34:
Do You Feel Safe?: CD
Yup, you read that right, kids, the album it was once alleged would never see a legitimate reissue has been re-released. For those not familiar with the band, Sin 34 was a unit active on L.A.’s Westside in the early ‘80s (and for a time in the ‘00s/’10s with the original lineup intact) that was notable for a) being one of only a handful in the early American hardcore scene to feature a woman on vocals; b) counting Dave Markey (half of the We Got Power fanzine brain trust and a noted filmmaker) among their ranks; c) being one of the legion of bands that Circle One guitarist Mike Vallejo was in (though not for this recording), for those playing the wildly popular “Six Degrees of Mike” game that is sweeping the underground. This is the band’s sole long-form outing released when they were still active, a perennial inclusion on assorted want-lists and a bit of a classic, I reckon, of its type. If you’re looking for the artsy weirdness of Butthole Surfers, the taut funky-punk of the Minutemen, or even the mind-bogglingly complex speed-trials of Die Kreuzen, you’re barking up the wrong tree here. Sonically, their palette was solidly of the sloppy, occasionally generic thrash variety, more in line with early Wasted Youth than any of those others, with less emphasis on how much Reagan sucked and on more personal issues, peppered throughout with enough humor to keep things interesting. I fully know it’s a bit of an acquired taste for those looking for more sophisticated fare, but I’ve had a soft spot for ‘em since this was originally released, so it’s nice to see this get another go-’round. While the inclusion of the Die Laughing EP and assorted comp tracks would’ve been aces, the three outtakes that are tacked on here are definitely a welcome surprise, as are the liner notes penned by Markey, Thurston Moore, and Tobi Vail, respectively, to give the listener some context.  –jimmy (Sinister Torch)


SICK THOUGHTS:
Terminal Teenage: LP
Two LPs, ten 7”s, and a 10” all released in the course of less than two years?! This is either the work of a madman hell-bent on prolificacy, or a teenager with absolutely nothing better to do than crank out a jaw-dropping amount of blown-out, lo-fi, bedroom-style garage punk. While the madman title has yet to be confirmed or denied, Sick Thoughts is in fact the work of local Baltimore teenager Drew Owen. It’s abrasive, it’s harsh, it’s punk. Rootsy and primal, if you want something raw this will satisfy. Angry and alienated, desperate for reason, this is a journey into the mind of a frustrated, lonely teenager. All too relatable.  –Daryl Gussin (Dead Beat)


SHITTY NIGHTS:
Rick Kid Jokes: Cassette
I’ve always thought the term “street punk” was a euphemism for “shitty, unrehearsed band.” This tape reminds me this sort of thing can be done well. I can’t tell if it’s intentional or not, but there’s a great whiff of ‘80s U.K. in this tape. Sometimes a great recording has a mojo to it where it seems like it could all fall apart at the seams. That’s where the urgency in punk lies. It’s not just being loud and/or obnoxious. This band either gets it, or is so cool they don’t have to. The riffs are simple, mid tempo, and pissed as hell. They bring to mind an angrier Vice Squad. “Fuck It I’m Trying” is an anthem quality song. Get it and put it on in your car. Good tape.  –Billups Allen (Let’s Go Do Some Crimes, letgodosomecrimes.co)


SHARKPACT:
Run: LP
Sharkpact is Camille and Jeff, a keyboard/drums duo from Olympia, WA, who inhabits the same scene as RVIVR, Dogjaw, and Prank War. It would be grossly reductive to say that Sharkpact is pop punk with a keyboard, as the keys could not be replaced with power chords. Instead, their vocals gleefully burst forth, harmonizing with the synth in ways impossible to guitar-wielding punk bands. I’m reminded of Kiwi’s uplifting inflections, but challenging anarchist politics: “I was taught class by the smell of a laundromat.” Each song is food for thought, yet even without glancing at the lyrics, Run is still perfect boogie music. Sharkpact makes me want to pedal my ass off on my bike until I’m drenched in sweat and self-realization: Sure, it’s great to be alive, but make your life count for something.  –Sean Arenas (Ditches, ditchesrecords.com / Starcleaner, starcleaner.com / Rumbletowne, rumbletowne.com)


SEB AND THE RHAA DICKS:
Self-titled: CD
Seb And The Rhaa Dicks, according to the liner notes, is a project led by Seb Radix of Lyon, France. I saw Seb open for Mike Watt And The Second Men at Permanent Records a few months back and he, with a tape-recorded drum beat and acoustic guitar, put on one hell of a punk show. Even for that tiny space, divided by racks of CDs and vinyl, he ran up and down the aisles, singing, dancing, and pretending to punch his male listeners in the testicles. It was a great and memorable show, even before thee legendary Mike Watt plugged in to play. The songs recorded here have a lot of bop and pop to them, reminiscent of The Modern Lovers or The Buzzcocks. I get the idea that Seb spends most of his time in Europe, but I will be certain to look for his future releases and chances to see him live.  –John Mule (Pure Pain Sugar, purepainsugar.blogspot.com / R’n’R Masturbation)


ROTTEN UK:
Bat Shit Crazy: 7”EP
This is the second 7” from the hilarious, ripping Rotten UK. Part joke band a la Who Killed Spikey Jacket?and part devout reenactment of the best of UK82 hardcore, Rotten UK is from Rochester, U.K., a.k.a. Western New York. Cerebral, intelligently inane, and an all-around hoot, the lyrics cover pressing punk issues like bestiality, Christian baiting, and chaos. Even better than their debut record, this is a 7” that won’t be forgotten. 82 copies come on colored vinyl, the first 30 thirty come with a large bat earring, and the next 77 come with a smaller bat earring. Fun for both those living the life and those standing on the sidelines, this record is the perfect balance of kitsch and reality.  –Art Ettinger (Disillusioned, rottenuk.bandcamp.com)


ROCKET 3:
Burn: CD
Rocket 3 is dreamy sugar pop with a Portland sound. They remind me of a montage of tidbit songs in Portlandia: a mix of Breeders and the Shangri-Las, and sweet, subdued Stereolab-style vocals. The drums roll along, punchy yet light. The guitar is charmingly simplistic, which adds to the band’s soft-flowing sound. There are three covers: “Submission” (Sex Pistols), “All Tomorrows Parties” (the Velvet Underground) and “Only Shallow” (My Bloody Valentine), which, I think, are unnecessary. Rocket 3 put their own sound into each of these songs, which I don’t think does any justice to the songs nor the band.  –Camylle Reynolds (Self-released)


RICKY C QUARTET, THE:
Recent Affairs: LP
This LP contains rock-inspired punk. At times, punk-inspired rock. The singer sounds a bit like the singer from The Saints. The guitars are low distortion and feature lots of Chuck Berry riffs in the vein of ‘77 New York bands. “Rock the Boat” utilizes a saxophone nicely. The saxophone occasionally pushes the sound to the Jersey shore. I think this album is more for the older crowd, but that’s me and I like it.  –Billups Allen (Wanda, wandarecords.de)


REV. NORB & THE ONIONS:
Self-titled: LP
Bouncy, intentionally stupid power chord punk, the kind with a ton of rock’n’roll solos and goofy lyrics delivered in boppin’ post-Ramones style. The usual tropes are there, for those keeping track at home: teenager problems, needing to be medicated, sci-fi conspiracies, B-movie monsters, etc. I can’t lie, this kind of tongue-in-cheek band always just seems like a novelty to me—but hey, you don’t see anyone asking me how to get invited to parties.  –Indiana Laub (Certified PR)


RESENT:
Self-titled: 7”
Technical post-hardcore from Austin, Texas. Not normally my thing, but I can appreciate the quality of the product and the tunes overall. Throwback ten years or so and these guys could be on Three One G.  –Steve Adamyk (Vermin Resplendence, resentpunx.com)


REBEL SPELL, THE:
Last Run: CD
I have been a fan of Vancouver’s Rebel Spell since the very beginning. They are such a unique band that brings together a lot of elements to conjure up something genuinely special. I am hard pressed to think of another current band out there who sounds like them. Last Run continues along the trajectory set forth by previous albums. Huge anthems that are, on one hand, very catchy and make you want to get up and move, and, on the other hand, incredibly thoughtful and introspective. Politics are at the forefront and it’s nice to hear serious protest music that is also fun to listen to. Rebel Spell tour North America a lot. If you get a chance, you should really get out and see them. They’re great live.  –ty (Not Yer Buddy, facebook.com/Not.Yer.Buddy)


REAL NUMBERS:
What Was & What Is: CD
Like its predecessor, the latest from these cats stakes out and stripmines the intersection between the Simpletones, Vaselines, and T.V. Personalities—all clean-channel guitars and happy hooks explored at various tempos. Great stuff. –jimmy (Almost Ready)


REAGAN’S POLYP: :
Deadenator:: CD
“I felt embarrassed and defensive every time someone came in through the living room and saw me watching it. Like I was guilty of something. And I guess I was.” –Dave Roche on his first time watchingPink Flamingos on a friend’s couch. Which I remembered while trying to listen to Deadenator while my roommate was in the kitchen making dinner. Two of these tracks come close to sounding like songs. “Rock and Roll ‘Music’”—only a song because it’s a parody with lyrics like, “Oh yeah / Let’s go / It was Saturday night / And I went to a bar / And I put in a quarter / to hear some guitar!” and the track, “Overpowered by the Spacegirl,” which “songs” around for a minute or so before the drums sound like they’re being thrown down the stairs and the yelping begins and doesn’t ever really go away. Generally, I support this kind of thing. Very entertaining. A post-holidays gift for someone you used to love? –Jim Joyce (Vetoxa, vetoxa.com)


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 226 227 228 229 230 231 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 251 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 276 277 278 279 280 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 291 292 293 294 295 296 297 298 299 300 301 302 303 304 305 306 307 308 309 310 311 312 313 314 315 316 317 318 319 320 321 322 323 324 325 326 327 328 329 330 331 332 333 334 335 336 337 338 339 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347 348 349 350 351 352 353 354 355 356 357 358 359 360 361 362 363 364 365 366 367 368 369 370 371 372 373 374 375 376 377 378 379 380 381 382 383 384 385 386 387 388 389 390 391 392 393 394 395 396 397 398 399 400 401 402 403 404 405 406 407 408 409 410 411 412 413 414 415 416 417 418 419 420 421 422 423 424 425 426 427 428 429 430 431 432 433 434 435 436 437 438 439 440 441 442 443 444 445 446 447 448 449 450 451 452 453 454 455 456 457 458 459 460 461 462 463 464 465 466 467 468 469 470 471 472 473 474 475 476 477 478 479 480 481 482 483 484 485 486 487 488 489 490 491 492 493 494 495 496 497 498 499 500 501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 510 511 512 513 514 515 516 517 518 519 520 521 522 523 524 525 526 527 528 529 530 531 532 533 534 535 536 537 538 539 540 541 542 543 544 545 546 547 548 549 550 551 552 553 554 555 556 557 558 559 560 561 562 563 564 565 566 567 568 569 570 571 572 573 574 575 576 577 578 579 580 581 582 583 584 585 586 587 588 589 590 591 592 593 594 595 596 597 598 599 600 601 602 603 604 605 606 607 608 609 610 611 612 613 614 615 616 617 618 619 620 621 622 623 624 625 626 627 628 629 630 631 632 633 634 635 636 637 638 639 640 641 642 643 644 645 646 647 648 649 650 651 652 653 654 655 656 657 658 659 660 661 662 663 664 665 666 667 668 669 670 671 672 673 674 675 676 677 678 679 680 681 682 683 684 685 686 687 688 689 690 691 692 693 694 695 696 697 698 699 700 701 702 703 704 705 706 707 708 709 710 711 712 713 714 715 716 717 718 719 720 721 722 723 724 725 726 727 728 729 730 731 732 733 734 735 736 737 738 739 740 741 742 743 744 745 746 747 748 749 750 751 752 753 754 755 756 757 758 759 760 761 762 763 764 765 766 767 768 769 770 771 772 773 774 775 776 777 778 779 780 781 782 783 784 785 786 787 788 789 790 791 792 793 794 795 796 797 798 799 800 801 802 803 804 805 806 807 808 809 810 811 812 813 814 815 816 817 818 819 820 821 822 823 824 825 826 827 828 829 830 831 832 833 834 835 836 837 838 839 840 841 842 843 844 845 846 847 848 849 850 851 852 853 854 855 856 857 858 859 860 861 862 863 864 865 866 867 868 869 870 871 872 873 874 875 876 877 878 879 880 881 882 883 884 885 886 887 888 889 890 891 892 893 894 895 896 897 898 899 900 901 902 903 904 905 906 907 908 909 910 911 912 913 914 915 916 917 918 919 920 921 922 923 924 925 926 927 928 929 930 931 932 933 934 935 936 937 938 939 940 941 942 943 944 945 946 947 948 949 950 951 952 953 954 955 956 957 958 959 960 961 962 963 964 965 966 967 968 969 970 971 972 973 974

| 0-9| A| B| C| D| E| F| G| H| I| J| K| L| M |

| N| O| P| Q| R| S| T| U| V| W| X| Y| Z|

Razorcake Podcast Player


·SEWERGROOVES, THE
·JACKS, LOS
·SURRENDER
·Razorcake Podcast #181
·SUPERHELICOPTER LTD
·HOODS UP 495
·Weekly Video Roundup for 9/23/2012
·ANTI-PANTS
·NO TREND


If you live in the Los Angeles area and want to help us out, let us know.



Get monthly notifications of new arrivals and distro and special offers for being part of the Razorcake army.



 
Razorcake/Gorsky Press, Inc.
PO Box 42129
Los Angeles, CA 90042

Except for reviews, which appear in both, the
contents of the Razorcake website are completely
different from the contents of Razorcake Fanzine.

© 2001-2015 Razorcake/Gorsky Press, Inc. Privacy Policy

Razorcake.org is made possible in part by grants from
the City of Los Angeles, Department
of Cultural Affairs and is supported
by the Los Angeles County Board of
Supervisors through the Los Angeles
Arts Commission.
Department of Cultural AffairsLos Angeles County Arts Commission


Web site engine code is Copyright © 2003 by PHP-Nuke. All Rights Reserved. PHP-Nuke is Free Software released under the GNU/GPL license.