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Record Reviews

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VITAMIN X:
Rip It Out: 7” EP
Solid, driving hardcore with the occasional lyrical nod to something larger than the personal gripe. Nice pics of them jumping around and fans going apeshit –jimmy (Havoc)


VICTIMS:
Divide and Conquer: CD
I had two chances to see this band live while they toured the states and I missed both of them. I wish I had the energy of my teen years. I was going to go out on three consecutive nights. A banner outing for me. But after seeing Tragedy on a Saturday, I could not recover. A Sunday and Monday show and going to work did not work to my benefit. I needed sleep and that’s what ended up happening. I hate to miss a touring band. I hate it even more when the band has come from another country. Even though I did not have personal knowledge of this band, they came well recommended. A lot of times, I like seeing a band live first before acquiring their recorded output. This was my game plan. Since my plan fell by the wayside, an alternative did come my way. By chance, a copy of their latest release sat waiting for me at HQ. I would at least get to experience this band one way or another. First off, the band residing in Sweden makes me think that nothing can go wrong from here on out. I am heavily biased with a love for bands from Sweden. Crust, metal or pop punk, there are so many great bands. From first listen, I knew I was in for a treat and have to add another band to the already extensive shopping list of releases that I need to purchase. Straight forward songs that average at the minute and a half mark. I’m thinking a mixture of Wolfpack (or later Wolfbrigade) meets Tragedy but also adding everything I love in a band like Fucked Up. Fast hardcore that has their homegrown Scandanavian touch but with unique accents that keep things interesting. Quick shifts of dis-style punk that at moments might feel brooding or bringing it back into the mid ‘80s. I’m really bummed that I missed them. –don (Havoc)


VARSITY DRAG:
For Crying out Loud: CD
The sticker on the cover told me that this is Ben Deily from the Lemonheads. Now, I like the Lemonheads (yes, the cool albums like Hate Your Friends, but I’d be lying if I said I don’t kick myself every once in a while for giving away my It’s a Shame about Ray tape, too). Varsity Drag, on the other hand, is the kind of stuff you probably listen to when you’re well over fifty and want to feel like you listen to something edgier than lite jazz or adult contemporary, but, you know, with a tambourine. –megan (Boss Tuneage)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Winnipeg Riot!: CD
Like most Americans, my knowledge of All Things Rock in Winnipeg starts with the Guess Who, middles with the Stretch Marks, and ends with Propaghandi, with not much (actually, with nothing) in between. And, inasmuch as i’d like to co-opt this review to point out the fact that the Guess Who—especially their early work from the ‘60s—are a fairly underrated band in today’s Rock Forefather Pecking Order, the more pertinent facts of the matter seem to indicate that, quite off American (and potentially even Canadian) radar screens, Winnipeg has, by all indications, served as a merrily festering pus lump of punk/rock/rock/punk carnage. If the liner notes can be believed (and why can’t they?), Winnipeg is essentially Manitowoc or Kenosha on a Saturday night, but 24/7—beer, brawls, and punk, not necessarily in that order (actually, i take that back. Necessarily in that order). I assume this CD serves sort of the same purpose as balcony seats at a GG Allin show—i get an OK view of the situation, but am in no danger of getting anything yucky on my shirt—and, truth be told, it’s pretty decent for the first seventy-five to eighty percent Things start wobblin’ off into unlistenability towards the end, but i can actually say that i think, with Winnipeg Riot!, civilization has turned the corner whereby i am actually somewhat interested in listening to compilations again—something that i don’t believe has been the case since about 1982. Go to Fargo, hang a right. Yep. BEST SONG: Hot Live Guys “Robbin’ A Bank” BEST SONG TITLE: The Surfadelics “Flux Capacitor” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: “Yes, it’s real blood.” –norb (Dionysus)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
What The Shite: Shite & Onions Volume 2: CD
Why does so-called “Celtic” music fall into the punk realm so often? I’ve tried and tried, but can’t figure it out. I mean, sure, I like The Pogues. I even like a lot of what Dropkick Murphy’s were doing to begin with, but it seems that after them, the gates opened up and a flood of tin whistles and mandolins chased all the “punk” out of “celtic-punk.” This comp is a prime example of what I’m talking about. Even tracks that I would have thought were kind of good at one point have been drown out by the “dye-dee-dye-dee-dye” jigs and leprechaun bullshit. In fact, I’ve been trying to review this thing for a couple of months now and I’m having a hard time getting through it. I even tried to listen to it on St. Patrick’s Day but to no avail. I guess I’m just the wrong guy for this one. –ty (Shite & Onions)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Upstarts of American Oi: 2 x CD
Given the style and some of the bands featured, I totally expected this to stink up my stereo somethin’ awful. As can be expected, there are more than a few patriotic ditties and odes to drinkin’ ’n’ fightin’, and enough testosterone-filled growly voices and would-be Ian Stuart crooners (and I’m talking about singing styles here, not nazi sympathies, so don’t start inundating me with howls of protest about none of the bands being racist, blah blah blah) to make anyone giggle, but there are also some quality songs mixed in. One of ‘em, “USA, Inc.,” with a chorus that says “Welcome to America/Hope you’ve got money,” sounds like it might even be—GASP!—critical of the United States. Bands making the scene include, the Boils, Wretched Ones, Far From Finished, NY Rel-X, Iron Cross, Whiskey Rebels, and a buncha others. Maybe it’s the lack of a lyric sheet, maybe I’m feeling nostalgic for my long-gone, bald days of yore, but I found a few things here worth more than one listen. Favorite band name? Weekend Bowlers. You just can’t get more working class than that. Would I recommend it? Gladly, provided they trimmed some of the fat (heads) off, which would leave one damn solid, jam-packed single-disc comp. –jimmy (www.streetanthemrecords.com)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
The Funhouse Comp Thing: CD
This comp features the efforts of The Primate 5, Armitage Shanks, The Cripples, The Hollow Points, The Mexican Blackbirds, Earaches and others, meaning it’s heavy on the trash rock and synth-driven punk stuff. Although a little more diversity in its thirty-two tracks would’ve been swell, what’s here is top notch—energetic, loud and often fucked up in all the right ways. If for no other reason, pick it up for the Steaming Wolf Penis track. –jimmy (The Funhouse)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Tales from the Asphalt Dancefloor: 12” EP
I remember in high school (late ‘80s) that if you wanted any advancement with a young lady, chances are you’d have to swallow Guns’n’Roses, Paula Abdul, Information Society—or, best case, if you were so lucky—The Cure, Marc Almond, Depeche Mode, or the Smiths. This comp. sounds like an updated version of the latter with more guitars: sorta-new wave, spooky, often drum-machined “I like Sisters of Mercy and Front 242” stuff. No surprise, I enjoyed the broke, tension-filled tracks (Destruction Unit, Digital Leather) over the robots of the post apocalypse with tons of effects pedals stuff (The Cutters, Sex For Cigarettes). Six songs, 12” vinyl EP picture disk. –todd (Vodka Tonic)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Mad Fabricators Society Soundtrack, Volume Two: CD
Über hot rod, high performance ‘60s-inspired instrumental surf and greasy garage from the Mad Fabricators Society II DVD. Includes the Lords of Altamont, Bleed, Dynotones, Blue Demons, Mr. Badwrench, Los Creepers and the Delusionaires. Not one of the 26 tracks is boring or a bummer, absolutely compulsory for summer cruising –thiringer (Split 7)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
KY DIY: LP
On a dare with myself, I tried to think of a “famous” Missouri punk band without having to resort to looking at the Kill from the Heart webpage. Lost that dare. The point, other than that I’m a dweeb, is that state is apparently woefully underrepresented, for although the bands listed for that area are semi-famous (or in the case of White Pride, infamous) there are only three entries for that entire state. That’s where this comp comes in. Sure, the bands here: Amxiety Attack, Alert! Alert!, The Creepy Aliens, Crap Corps, The Blackouts, The Skate-o-Masochists, When Good Robots Go Bad, The Hamburglars, Dick Cheney’s Dick and The Hospital, respectively, are not bands from the “classic” era of American punk/hardcore, but they are from Missouri, and make a mean racket in their own right. Although the emphasis here is heavy on the hardcore, each band here has enough individual personality not to become one big, boring blur. Best of all, it’s a compilation that is true to what made so many early comps so crucial—it is a snapshot of a particular area at a particular time, rather than some lame-ass “sampler” of bands you’d never listen to, courtesy of some label you’d never buy anything from. If indie punk is something you can get behind, this is well worth seeking out. –jimmy (Cassette Kill)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Killed by Trash: CD
Holy shit I need a shower after this. Gimmick pulled off perfect—covers of Killed by Death tracks by new lo-lo-lo-fi geniuses. Years in the making, with bands that P. Trash has released—some of the best bands sludging around. Jeffrey Novak somehow made “I Hate Music” even more prehistoric. The Tyrades dominate “Pop Gun.” Drugstop revitilizes “M.I.C.” And then there’s The Feelers, Carbonas, Black Time, The Heartattacks, Los Raw Gospels, Digger & the Pussycats, etc etc. Great comp. –mike (P. Trash)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Innate Rebellion: CD
Resistant Culture: They sound markedly less straight-up speed metal than they did back in the ‘80s, when they were called Resistant Militia and we shared many an East L.A. backyard, but Tony’s growl remains and the lyrics are just as rebellious. Nice to hear something new from ’em. Fallas De Sistema: Bilingual (though mostly in Spanish), political hardcore addressing the A.L.F., war, and “Musica para la resistencia.” One of the singers sounds like the dude from Lodo Y Asfalto. Resist And Exist: Another band I remember from way back, in this case the early 90s/Media Children anarcho-punk crowd. More political hardcore with the dual male/female vocal styling made popular by Nausea and others. Contravene: Another male/female vocal band. These guys have more metal in their guitars and the vocalists, however flat their resulting efforts, actually try to sing. –jimmy (Spiral Records)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Give Em The Boot V: CD
Okay, I’ll say it: I actually own just about the entire GETB series—I’m a sucker for cheapo label samplers, especially when you run across em used for a buck. And while it’s decidedly uncool to say so, there’s usually about a handful of pretty great songs on them. Granted, there’s always a decent amount of tripe as well, but it’s always nice to hear stuff from the Slackers, Leftover Crack, etc.—I have yet to buy any of their records, but I always enjoy hearing them on comps. That said, I think Hellcat may have finally shot its wad with this series. Shit’s pretty played out at this point; V has the fewest songs of any of them, and so much of it is rehashed, second- and third-rate streetpunk or ska/reggae stuff that just has no staying power. There’s only a few standouts this time—Left Alone, Time Again, and the Heart Attacks. And anyone’ll tell you, three good songs out of eighteen is pretty much blowing it. Plus it’s offset by absolutely inane, dipshit songs by Roger Miret And The Disasters and Orange, and a host of other bands that just zip right by without making any impact at all. –keith (Hellcat)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Funhouse Comp Thing: CD
Attention garage punk fans: This collection is killer!! Repeat Offenders and Head were my faves, but almost every damn tune is great on here. Check out this lineup: Fe Fi Fo Fums, Primate 5, The Trashies, Pulses, Gas Huffer, Fall Outs, Armitage Shanks, Blank Its, Girl Trouble, Mexican Blackbirds, The Sermon, Cripples, Invisible Eyes, Ape City R&B, Earaches and more; thirty-two songs. A very rare great compilation. –frame (My Fat Ass)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Fivecore Records: 2006 Sampler: CD
Twelve songs by six bands: Valiomierda, Frontside Five, The Orbiting Nubs, Black Lamb, Tard and Exit Strategy. All of them play metally punk. Black Lamb do a pretty decent early Danzig impression. –frame (Fivecore, www.5corerecords.com)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Dudes Tunes Volume II: Dudin’ Out: CD
If you like things that are totally bitch or listening to crucial tunes at a dudebeque, this is pretty essential. With Butt, Boris The Sprinkler, and Lord Dudenheim And His Royal Dudes, can you really go wrong? Big fat doubt it. So, coldie-up, order some ‘Zas, throw this in the deck, and start Toddin’ it up. –megan (Dudes Magazine)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Class Pride World Wide 3: CD
When these guys say “World Wide,” they mean it. Here we have a compilation of working class bands spanning the globe and running the gamut of genres of punk, hardcore and oi. As with almost every compilation out there, there’s gold and there’s clunkers. This one beats the average with great tunes by Union Made (Canada), Discipline (Holland), Boiler (Hungary), among a haystack of bands from countries like Italy, Chile, Yugoslavia, Argentina, Japan, England and the US. Well, Russian oi isn’t all that great, but it can’t stop this comp from being as great as it is. It must have been a hell of an undertaking getting the music from all of these bands and communicating with them all. I’d say it was worth it. –ty (Insurgence)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Anti-Disco League Vol. 1: CD
So far as I’m able to tell, this is an international comp of oi bands put together by someone in The Templars, and featuring the Templars, Deadline, Urban Riot, Crashed Out, Bulldog Samurai, Counterattack, Stomper 98 and others. The styles are diverse enough considering the genre and most of the tunes aren’t too terrible or anything. Ultimately, though, no one really stands out here, so it’s pretty much average as far as modern comps go. –jimmy (Templecombe)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
An International Underground Tribute to the Man in Black: CD
Twenty-nine tracks of US, German, Dutch and British bands’ masterful punk, country and loose RAB interpretations of everyone’s perennial man’s man. Reno Divorce, Dead 50’s, Social Combat, the Get Outs and many more cover Cash’s entire half-century career with awe-inspired diligence and reverence. Also includes two Highwaymen tunes. Surprisingly exciting, Emscherkurve 77 and Springtoifel sing in German on “San Quentin” and “I Got Stripes,” respectively. Two caveats: Barry Lewis’ cover of NIN’s “Hurt” is overly maudlin and Vortex’s cover of “Jackson” is ska-rendously disappointing. –thiringer (Rebellion, www.rebellionrecords.nl)


VAGINASORE JR:
: 7”
If there’s a specific sound to barbeques, benders, and horseshoes, this would be it. Imagine a backyard full of friends with beards, kids and dogs, and Dan Padilla (the man and the band), and here’s your soundtrack. It makes me miss Tampa. –megan (ADD/ So Intense)


US BOMBS:
We’re The Problem: CD
Duane Peters is back with his flagship band. I like all of his projects, but it’s always the Bombs that do it best for me. The new record is no exception. I really don’t think that there’s anyone reading this who hasn’t at least heard a song or two, so you know the deal. Out of control, Sex Pistols style punk, with a hint of ‘50s doo-wop and a true American classic at the wheel. The choruses are huge and so are the guitars. DP is as gravely as ever. Get on your liquor store cruiser and head down to the records store and get this now. It’s the soundtrack to your next pool session. –ty (Sailor’s Grave)


UNSACRED HEARTS, THE:
In Defense of Fort Useless: CD
They’re supposed to be some rock/alt-rock hybrid, but what I’m hearing is a less country/more arty Gun Club. I’m not quite sure that’s the intention. There’s also the occasional punk rock freak-out to be found as well. Ultimately, they ain’t bad at what they’re slangin’, which I guess is the most important part. –jimmy (Serious Business)


TRASHIES:
Taz Tattoo: 7”
More trash rock that gets me wanting to dance, but my opinion from the CD hasn’t been changed yet. –megan (The Party’s Over, no address given)


TRASHIES:
Life Sucks Trash Fuck: CD
This album is a sloppy, retarded, trashcore, punch-each-other-in-the-groin, pogo party! I dare you to listen to this album without thinking about doing something stupid. Alright, so it’s hard to do anything without the contemplation of stupid things, but this album is definitely a catalyst. I’d like to think that the song “Sweatpants Boner” sums up the true emotions of this musical group, but whether they like it or not the song “I H8 U Motherfuckers” truly displays why this style of music and this band are important. This song is an anthem for anyone who’s fucking sick of everything, especially anthems. –Guest Contributor (Mortville)


TRASHIES:
Life Sucks Trash Fuck: CD
I really want to like the Trashies. And I don’t think I’m that far off from it. Synth-driven low-fi stuff that’s pretty difficult to not dance to, especially when you see them live. My worry is the shtick (and I’m assuming it is a shtick) of being white trash. They wear tight, short denim shorts, have garbage cans on stage, and in my memory there was a mullet or at least a rat tail. I grew up in a very rural (read: ten miles to the closest gas station) area in Maine. I had someone on my school bus route put a telephone pole up in the front yard of their trailer one day. About a week later, the pole had sprouted various antlers and looked like a totem pole of sorts. Another week passed, and the antlers were now adorned with bras and women’s underwear. No explanation, it was just what they did. I also grew up surrounded by people who killed their food, and couldn’t think of a better way to spend a weekend than “Goin’ muddin’, guy.” And sure, I had my difference of opinions with a large group of them, and a lot of their kids made my life hell through high school, but some of them were also the nicest, most considerate people I’ve met. They led somewhat simple lives in comparison to others, but they chose to live that way and they were happy with it. But no one, no matter how happy they were with their life, wanted to be called white trash. And it was a term that was never used lightly. So, I was quite shocked when I moved to Los Angeles as “white trash couture” was taking over. People began wearing mesh hats, paying a hundred dollars for a mullet, and wearing pre-worn, pre-torn, pre-stained clothes. Even that I could take, but when a girl I worked with bragged about how “white trash” she’d been the night before because she’d eaten a sandwich, I was pushed too far. So, with the Trashies, I don’t know them. I don’t know where they’re coming from. I don’t know if they’re hopping on a trend that leaves a bad taste in my mouth, or if (as I’m hoping) they’re doing something else. I plan on keeping listening and asking them the next time they come through town. –megan (Mortville)


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·URINALS, THE
·US BOMBS
·ENEMY YOU
·SHARKS AND SAILORS
·MOLEHILL
·ROCKBOTTOM
·BLACK SPARROW PRESS
·LIVEFASTDIE
·ARDILLAS, LAS


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