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Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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HELLSTOMPER:
Are You from Dixie?: CD
From the title of this release to songs like "Pabst Blue Ribbon," "Old Rattler" and "Son of the South," you should know what to expect. You get some hillbilly rock and punk. Reminded me of Antiseen playing a hoe down with some really cheap whiskey. This could be a discography of sorts since this is made up of songs previously released on three different albums. I'm not feeling it. –don (D-Fens)


HARKONEN:
Dancing: CDEP
Plodding dirge-core. I always go back to the idea of engines that need oil when I hear music like this. I once thought that was a good thing. Now, after several years of aging and listening to some truly sphincter-clenching shit like Godflesh, The Swans, and Melt-Banana, I realize that music like this - when played like this - isn't edgy, impressive or a stunning display of masterful heaviness. It?s just boring. –scott (Initial)


DIVISION OF LAURA LEE:
Das Not Compute: CD
Yay. Despite the Fugazi comparisons and claims that this band is somehow something more than a Hives clone which listened to too many Sonic Youth and Mudhoney albums, this still just sounds like a shitty garage rock rip-off of the Spacemen 3 to me. –scott (Burning Heart)


DIE PRINCESS DIE:
Self-titled: CD
Bright pink cover with a mustache. How can that be bad, right? Wrong-o. Is this what the kids call "ambient"? –megan (Cut Lips)


DERRINGER:
A Rock and Roll Tragedy: CD
Well, this ain't the latest disc by Rick Derringer's new band, that's for sure. –jimmy (www.zerovelocityrecords.com)


DECAHEDRON:
Disconnection Imminent: CD
I freely admit that I am annoyed and have a headache at the moment, and I will also admit that reviews frequently say more about the reviewer and the reviewer's tastes than they do about the music which is the alleged subject (and that is something worth remembering as you read this review), but I will make two key points about this release. The first is that the vocals remind me of Perry Farrell. That is not what I consider a good thing. The second is that the presence of Fugazi's Joe Lally doesn't make this disc any better. I like grindy, spazzy, blisteringly intense music. However, while I love Fugazi, I never really liked Frodus. I suppose my primary issue with this release at this moment is that it's like angular, disjointed prog rock. It's like what I imagine would have happened if the Blood Brothers had grown up aspiring to play King Crimson songs in double-time. That might sound like a good thing, but in this case, I really don't think it is. –scott (Lovitt)


BOOK OF KNOTS:
Self-titled: CD
Very slow, very noisy, very arty and very obsessed with knots and seamanship. Okay, you kept my attention for three songs. –jimmy (Arclight)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Bloody & the Bastard Children - A Tribute to Bloody F. Mess: CD
I think it's been well established by now that most "tribute" records suck ass. Admittedly, this, a tribute to Bloody F. Mess, is better than most, but, ultimately it does little to change that assessment. You get twenty-five tracks from twenty-five bands. Sure, it's nice to be paid tribute, and I'm sure Mess is touched, but this is about as crucial as yet another Doors "greatest hits" package. –jimmy (bnbrecords@aol.com)


U. UTAH PHILLIPS:
I've Got to Know: CD
Utah Phillips is a pretty good storyteller. He's like that old guy who gives you a little weed at a party and tells you all kinds of fascinating shit that you wish you could remember in the morning. His stories on this CD all have to do with being against war, and it's interesting stuff, even if you have heard most of it before in one way or another. He also does some folk songs on acoustic guitar. Skip over those. –sean (AK Press)


TOXIC NARCOTIC:
Shoot People, Not Dope: CDEP
I was expecting the Casualties and instead I got Limecell. I'm happy. –aphid (Rodent Popsicle)


STRAITJACKET:
The Loudest Voice: 7"
Mid-tempo punk, kinda poppy in spots. They somehow manage to vaguely remind me of both All and the Business, which is really weird when you take into consideration that they sound like neither. –jimmy (www.straitjacket.net)


SPF1000:
Witch Hunt: CD
Yet another band peddlin' post-Marilyn Manson goth pap with lame lyrics. I have no doubt the guy responsible for this would've felt right at home with the '80s post-Poison Sunset Strip crowd, judging from the "pro" quality of this and the "glam" (in the 1988 sense of the word) feel bubbling just under the surface. –jimmy (SPF1000)


SKYLINE AWAKE:
Fight Your Route Of Identity: CDEP
If a group of people who were fans of Braid and Reach For The Sky got together and wrote a song which took turns alternating between each band's style at the verse and chorus, "Redirect" would come into existence. If you repeated this process six more times, this EP would be the result. –Aaron J. Poehler (Rosewater)


SCRAGS:
One with Everything: CD
A big rock sound resulting in a big fucking yawn. –jimmy (Wonton)


RIVERDALES:
Phase Three: CD
By now, most people know that a Riverdales album is little more than a tremendously straight-forward Ramones tribute, from the title to the band's appearance to the songs. That's not to say that these songs aren't catchy, but I suspect you need to be a massive Ramones fan to hear another band play songs that are nearly identical to the first few records. –scott (145)


PROWLER:
Chaos in the City: CDEP
Skinhead music for those who want their skinhead music to be familiar. At least they aren't racist. –don (Mad Butcher)


PREACHER GONE TO TEXAS:
Self-titled: CD
Oh, goody, my two favorite music genres (tough-guy neo-metal and emo) mooshed together all nice and purty. Listening to this has given me a whole new reason to pop off and whack myself. Thanks. –jimmy (Sinister)


NAILBITER:
Abused: CD
Another Discharge clone band, this one inspired by their speed metal period. –jimmy (Hardcore Holocaust)


MYLES OF DESTRUCTION/ ABIKU:
Split: 7"
There's a blurry picture of a bird on the cover. You figure it out. –Guest Contributor (Worldeater)


MAXEEN:
Self-titled: CD
My Windows Media Player did not want to play this. It fluttered and skipped all over the place. I should take it as a sign. –don (Side One Dummy)


MARATHON:
Songs to Turn the Tide: CDEP
About five years ago, someone played me Death By Stereo's first full length. I liked it all right, but it never stuck with me. It's not quite metal, but the flirtations are all over the place, like it's seriously dating metal, but not married to it. Songs to Turn the Tide has all the trimmings of Death By Stereo's early output. Marathon's vocalist seems just as comfortable with the cancer polyp scream and a vocal strain that's halfway between sultry and Slayer. When the instruments slow down from locked-in hardcore, it sounds like they're fighting off the urge to solo and have listened to At the Drive-In a couple times too many. I also get an early Good Riddance vibe, mostly in the lyrics. Yeah, I agree with lines like "This war just fuckin' stinks," but they aren't going to have me singing along with my fist in the air any time soon. In the end, it sounds like a young band that's finding its own sound. From the label that released the fuckin' smoking Strike Anywhere debut. –todd (Red Leader)


LOVE ME DESTROYER:
Black Heart Affair: CD
Sometimes a band can be too perfect. I feel this band is too perfect. The production is perfect. The songs are played to perfection. The hooks are just right. I feel the energy and emotion of the songs. I can't find anything really wrong other than this just feels a little sanitized to me. Almost too formula, like I have heard it before. In turn, I feel unmoved. –don (Suburban Home)


JAD FAIR AND JASON WILLETT:
Superfine: CD
This is what you get when you take what could be an okay soundbite and make an album out of it. I just kept waiting for the music to come in, but it never did. Then again, I can't say I waited too long. Out of the 155 tracks (No, that?s not a typo. One hundred fifty-five tracks.), I made it through two. –megan (Public Eyesore)


HERSCHELL GORDON LEWIS & THE AMAZING PINK HOLES:
The South Shall Rise Again b/w Moonshine Mountain: CD-Single
Over the course of the years, i have finally come to accept the legitimacy of the hillbilly thing/thang as one of rock & roll's legitimate and most direct ancestors (therefore, by implication, one of punk rock's many great-grandparents as well), but, that said and Mr. Lewis' snappy Bob Eubanks' style voice notwithstanding (Herschell Gordon Lewis... Herschell Gordon Lewis... wasn't he that back Minnesota traded away all those draft picks to Dallas for in the '80s?), i find neither of these songs so charming that i would feel justified in proclaiming this disc a legitimate hum-dum-dinger from Dingersville. Assuming few of us here are legitimate connoisseurs of the genre, my recommendation is to keep your two-dollar bill in your pocket and point your Hot Rod Ford in an alternate direction. BEST SONG: "Moonshine Mountain" BEST SONG TITLE: I dunno, wasn't this the kind of question that Kirk used to blow up the androids in "I, Mudd?" FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Holy fuck, he DOES know Bob Sablack!!! –norb (Smog Veil)


GRAHAM PARKER:
Your Country: CD
Well, Razorcake has officially received its first Graham Parker release for review, which no doubt puts us in the running with Rolling Stone as to the only two publications in the world with that dubious honor. It's all downhill from here. Guess it's only a matter of time before the Springsteen and David Lindley bootlegs start pouring in. –jimmy (Bloodshot)


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