Sunday, September 29, 2013

[Past-Blast] [Blank Generation- September. 2001]

Reviews from Blank Generation originally published in September 2001 Note: Images added to certain reviews for cosmetic purposes in 2013
Cramps "Songs the Lord Taught Us" LP & "Off the Bone" LP
Begin Review Prologue.
Despite what Julie sez, that she NEVER drank Kool-Aid as a child, which I find really hard to believe, Kool-Aid has NEVER turned its back on her. She is "allergic" to it. It "burns her throat" she said. Traitor. Setting scenes on this Monday night… The Spanish speaking TV station that held our interest earlier has lost its appeal. Setting scenes for "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" whilst I type this review. Maybe, just maybe its time for a haiku. I’m feelin' up to it.
Summer Days leading
into Evenings and now
I labor with words.
Always Coca-Cola.
END Review Prologue.
This review is part of a recent re-birth. A Cramps re-birth that has Cincinnati in its clutches. I go into Shake it Records and BAM! BOOM! BAM! It’s like when I hit the 'C' section it’s CRAMPS everywhere!!!! EVERYWHERE!!!! I’m not complaining though I really dig the Cramps.
And Julie sez I’m not too cultured because I would rather write about The Cramps THAN read subtitled for a movie she said is- Good. Like Xena: Warrior Princess "good" she said. Oh well, maybe I will give her a chance because this "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" thing fits into my whole orient thing, which rose and sorta fizzled out with the purchase of a Bonsai Tree and declarations that Ohio is LIKE The Japaneese Empire due to Ohio’s state flag having a big red dot on it… Maybe this "Hidden Dragon" movie will revive my interest in all things Far Eastern.... Replacing my Vietnam veterans and camouflage t-shirts and berets with slippers and, you guessed it, more haiku. Here I am, already writing haiku in this reviews prologue.... Just a thought here, maybe, JUST (maybe), I am beginning a NEW phase to my persona: A mixture, an amalgam if you will, of The Orient AND military!!! FUCK Yeah!!! The movie begins. See you for more on the Cramps later.
Ah, I’m back. The movie was pretty damn cool, even if I had to read my way through it. As far as the mixing of the two scenes of orient and military that I alluded to in the last paragraph, just before I left to watch "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon".... Well, this whole military thing has a pretty hard hold on me. Let’s talk about the Cramps.
In many ways, The Cramps were, and for that matter still ARE, the answer to the eternal question, "Punk-Rock?" I became an avid fan after I read about them in SPIN or something like that. The writer of the certain article featuring the Cramps described meeting them for the first time and how surreal the whole scene was. If memory serves me correctly, and trust me on this one, my memory is NOT what it use to be, I believe something was mentioned about the writer first meeting Lux Interior and Poison Ivy in a dilapidated apartment where the windows were blacked out with thick fabric with the main source of light coming from a television set that was turned to a in-between station of static. This is the image I have of the Cramps, like it or not, but it fueled my taste for their music. The way I figured it, way back in 1990 when I read this (once again, I think) this image I had of the Cramps just fulfilled their whole being to me and my way of doing things. I RESPECTED this image of the Cramps I now had in my head. I’ve never really been one for band’s images and themes too much because despite my military "thing" and my love of velcro-shoes, I am not really a fashionite. But the Cramps! Like troopers! The Cramps do what they do SO I DON’T HAVE TO!!!!!! Fucking sacrifice!
My journeys down the long punk-rock road would take me to places that I feel Lux Interior and Poison Ivy would really appreciate, populated with people that Lux and Ivy would probably feel very at home with. Four people living in a building with one working electrical outlet (for TV and VCR), one overhead light that would fizz out from time to time, and a toilet that would be used as frequently as any other toilet, but didn’t have the capability to flush like any other toilet. Yeah, you could use this toilet and all (piss only) but you were NOT to flush it. The un-flushable waste left in the bowl turned every color of the rainbow gong in a three day time from BLACK to a soapy white with no substance separate from urine added. True Story! What if someone had to shit you say? Well, as a fellow named Mike TV (History lesson: Lead vocals for a local defunct Cincy band called THE MUZZIES and so-named from the character in "Willy Wonkas Chocolate Factory") would say, "You get a plastic bag and go in the other room." Very disturbing, but yet a kind of place that reminded me of the Cramps and their music.
The first and most memorable release I have was a cassette titled Bad Music for Bad People, which pretty much was the only thing from the band I listened to (and Gravest Hits of course) until I got these two LPs. Everyone wants to proclaim the Cramps a rock-a-billy band first and foremost, but to me they have more of that punk-rock in them and enough quirkiness and just odd sounding songs to make them arty enough for me to consider them art-punk. To list them simply as a rock-a-billy band would group them with the Stray Cats. I don’t know if the two ever really met but I think a bunch of pussies like The Stray Cats would shat themselves if they ever met the Cramps, even in a well lit room.
The Cramps look like they do drugs.
The Cramps look like they brake laws.
The Cramps look debaucherous.
The Cramps look dangerous.
The Cramps personify everything BAD about rock and roll and that’s GOOD!
I’m no sorts of fucking music wizard or anything. Someone told me that Bad Music wasn’t really an LP per say, because it was a compilation of singles or something. The same person also said thatSongs the Lord Taught Us is their first REAL LP. This shit isn’t really important to me really. Really? Really!
Who fucking cares? I have more important things to do than memorize stupid facts like which release came first. Of all the projects and shit I have going on, vast music knowledge is very low on the list. I feel the same way when it comes to all that Killed By Death shit too. Now you avid Blank Generation Readers know how I am about my Killed By.... Many would expect someone like me to have all that shit from the CompHELLation memorized. I don’t! I have my blood-splattered copy tucked away in my files under RESOURCES and I look at it from time to time. That’s why Mark did something like The CompHELLation, so I wouldn’t waste my brain cells on memorizing such trivial SHIT and it freed up space for destroying brain cells due to massive Miller High Life/Steel Reserve consumption. What’s BETTER? A brain cell used to memorize La Peste Killed By appearances, OR that brain cell DYING from drinking Seven Quarts of Steel Reserve? Yep. Sound Taps for the dead cell.
I have been playing bass since I was 20. In ROCKTOBER I turn 29. I’m not a phenomenal bassist or anything, but I get the job done. I’m really trying hard to get to the point. I am now at my bass ability. HOLD YER HORSES, I AM GETTING AT SOMETHING IF YOU JUST GIVE ME A MINUTE.... I read about how Sid Vicious just picked up a bass one night, put the first Ramones LP on, took some speed and at the end of the night could play the album in its entirety. Me, I’m not even that good. Just about a month ago I sat down with Bad Music and I don’t know what came over me. I sat down to try and figure out my favorite Cramps track, "New Kind of Kick," which is a track that I feel sums up the first several years of my involvement in punk-rock.... I figured it out in a couple of listens and moved on. When I was done I could play half the tracks on the tape! I couldn’t believe it. Bad Music turned out to me MY version of The Ramones. You see, I have nothing to hide. I am completely fine with my abilities and in-abilities. I figured if I JUST played bass and didn’t write for Blank Generation, or did Art, or didn’t do The Neus Subjex, I could probably be a decent bassist. I’m varied in my likes. I’m well rounded, in more ways than one.
So you see, I have very special place for the Cramps right here, where my ROCK AND/OR ROLL HEART USED to be. That fucking thing, ROCK AND/OR ROLL HEART, is long dead. I’m alive on pure revelry.
Songs the Lord Taught Us features "TV Set" and "Garbageman" from the Bad Music release and eleven other ditties including their rendition of "Sunglasses After Dark", "Tear It Up" and a version of "I Was A Teenage Werewolf" complete with a in studio fight I suppose between parties unknown. Only a band like the Cramps would do something like, include an argument of that caliber like before this song plays because sometimes its IMPORTANT to just let things happen and see where they go. Let the chips fall where they may, just sit back and enjoy the mess. That, too, I wholly RESPECT.
Off The Bone features many repeat tracks but sports a 3D cover. I have yet to find a pair of 3D glasses to check it out or anything but it’s pretty damn slick. Side One features the Gravest Hitstracks in their completeness and two repeat tracks from Taught Us ("Garbageman" and "Fever"). Side Two reads pretty much like Bad Music featuring mostly repeats from that release, including my favorite track, "New Kind of Kick" and a song called "The Crusher."
The vinyl on both releases is a bit thicker than usual, and unlike most bootalikes features labels on the records. Due to the similarities of the labels on both records, I would say that these records were done by the same German guy. Why German? Because only crazy mothers like those Germans really APPRECIATE a band like the Cramps here, in Twenty oh one... The reproduction artwork on Taught Us is pretty decent too. With the thick vinyl and artwork, these records are built to last... The songs are also given more depth on the vinyl.... Good thing these came my way because I have almost worn out my tape.
Well, that’s it for now I suppose. You know, everyone seems to have the consensus that my reviews are too long.
Fuck you.
My long reviews are better than your non-existent one’s ass-wipe.
Once again, fuck you. (SAB)
(No reliable address, Boot-a-likes)

Faint "Danse Macabre" CD/LP
The Faint, a band I had a watchful eye on. Waiting for them to move more toward me or away. Well, I am glad to say that after their latest LP, Blank-Wave Arcade, The Faint have moved closer to me with Danse Macabre but yet still have a ways to go.
You see, Danse Macabre is what I would declare superior to Blank-Wave Arcade in many ways...mainly songwriting. The Faint has made a tremendous leap in their songwriting ability dealing out powerful songs full of rage and contempt like "Agenda Suicide."
The Faint’s sound is still reminiscent of 80’s mainstream new wave, but this time on Danse they dive deeper down in the sound; closer to bands and performers like John Foxx, Gary Numan and Kraftwerks latter era stuff, but still within the comforts of their established rhetoric- Midge Ures' era in Ultravox, Soft Cell, Depeche Mode, and The Human League.... In fact what I want, what I need, is for The Faint to delve more deeply into performers like John Foxx and Gary Numan. John Foxx is one person who I will admit, I have only one recorded song by, but it’s a rager of a tune! It’s a song called "Underpass" from a cost cutting new wave sampler that also features a track by The Gary Numan. After hearing this song I could totally understand how Mr. Gary Numan himself was influenced in his solo career. I can hear a bit of John Foxx in the Faint, BUT not enough... There seems to be a need for fast, dance-beats, if you will, that I feel The Faint hide behind to make their music "danceable" and/or "upbeat." Bullshit! The Faint needs more John Foxx. How many times do I have to say it? The Faint need more Gary Numan (Pleasure Principal) and hell, while were at it, let’s give them more Joy Division too.
I’m being overly hard on The Faint; for that I am sorry, really, I am. That’s no bullshit. I’m really getting into what The Faint have to offer and even considered driving to Indianapolis, Indiana to witness their Danse live, in person. What I know is that I can put this LP on and listen to it, and after a while I just reach this place where I can say, "I have had enough," and change the LP. I’m even prepared to think that this isn’t even the band’s fault. Maybe it’s me. All I know is that of all the Faint HAD, and all that they have gotten in-between Blank-Wave Arcade and now, in all that the Faint HAVE, something is missing. It’s just a pinch or dash of a ‘lil somethin'-somethin' keeping this band from totally rocking my world, like they should, like when I heard Servotron for the first time.
The Faint on Danse Macabre is too house dance to me. Too raver for it to just topple me… You can’t impress everyone all the time no matter how hard you try.... The Faint hasn’t seemed to grasp this yet. Someone needs to tell them that it’s OK for them to alienate; in fact, it comes to be expected. When you can listen to this LP and can picture Juliette Lewis dancing around with two robots in a room for a GAP commercial, someone’s gotta say it.... I think WITHOUT 'saying it' I have been the one to say it. You have to be a fucking moron to miss all the commercialness that the Faint has. It’s just fingertips away…
The other day I was with my better half, shopping, God Bless America, while waiting just outside the dressing room I hear the Buggles, I hear Missing Persons, I even hear Gary Numan himself performing "Cars" over the stores intercom system. Paranoia anthem turned conumerism? Sure. Think about it: FUCK, shopping and being paranoid is actually the same thing. It takes the same amount of energy and wouldn’t you know it, it’s just as much fun! I could have just as easily heard "Violent" by the Faint on that intercom. In fact maybe it was the next song... Just after I walked out the door.
I don’t care though. More power to them. I could see the humor hearing a track like "Total Job" in the mall. Borderline art. The new Swindle. You see I like going to the malls where everything is shoved right down my throat. I like being force-fed bullshit on conveyer belts and window-shopping. Window-shopping is the modern art gallery. I respect a good window display as much as a Salvador Dali print.
Danse Macabre, I think, is a concept album. The cover artwork is taken from a dance piece called "One Charming Night" that was in turn based on a book about vampires. Ballet! Something as foreign to me as bottled water! Vampire ballet! Ah, Goth! That’s it, the Faint is the vanguard of a new Goth movement! Tracks throughout the LP seem to be centered around urban revolt. Industrial sabotage. Like if there was a modern version of Metropolis made, the Faint would fulfill the creative visions for the movie’s soundtrack.
The Faint shows a rougher edge on Danse Macabre than on their previous LPs. I feel as though I have been very harsh on The Faint in this review and once again, I apologize. I apologize for the same reasons that I am so abusive, I care. In all fairness, over the course of the last several days and giving both Dance and Arcade spins, I have grown more attached to The Macabre. It’s grown on me. Vampiric ballet? Sure! I’m fucking game. Bring it on Mothers!!!!
What all record reviews boil it all down to is one thing: buy or don’t buy. Am I glad I bought this LP? Yes. That is saying something. I bought this LP and decided to review it. As much as it would have been cool for me to get this in the mail from Saddle-creek, I didn’t.
Do I desperately await more from The Faint? Yes.
Maybe it ain’t to late to catch their show in Indianapolis… (SAB)

Piranhas "Dictating Machine Service" 7"
New Piranhas material. Truly a treat beyond the descriptive word. Seriously, I’m not shitting you here. I wouldn’t do that to you. None at all… Trust me. Rock with me.
So, like, they’re back or something. I was really upset when I heard that The Piranhas were no more but figured the self-destructive thing had to eventually run its course to the inevitable dead end. But that dead end would hold surprises. It turned out to NOT be one of those dead ends where the road, or street, or whatever the kids call paved roadways nowadays, just ENDED with a guardrail and a sign proclaiming: DEAD END…
Leaving you to hit the reverse, or in the case of a band like The Piranhas take one last look at each other, smile and head full-speed into a sure-fire death.
The Piranhas hit the guard rail and hit that sign and exploded through the air in a 300 foot drop off of a cliff. Their car hit bottom and rolled over several times before it exploded into flames. Like true heroes, they went 100% to the end, like Billy the Kid and The Regulators in Young Guns…
But like The Regulators would return in Young Guns 2, The Piranhas story isn’t over. The band disbanded. It looked like they were over. After a possible new band, that was going to be called The Romans or some shit like that, a new Piranhas line-up spawns and once again sets out to destroy! To maim… To art… 100% full-speed ahead.
You see, if you looked at footage tape of the first demise of The Piranhas you would see each member were ejected from the car before it exploded. They would assemble just mere feet away from where the car's fire would smolder, laughing the whole time. The Piranhas cheated death. This single represents a return of The Piranhas, but love them and watch them bleed while you can. Like a thief in the night they were taken from us once, and it can easily happen again. One day you got them and one day you don’t. Right now, we got them. Let’s enjoy it while it last.
The two or three songs (depending on how you look at it) are of the same caliber of past Piranhas material on Tom Perkins Records. On these songs The Piranhas seem to dive more deeply into the realm of art/noise. It’s just that I wish it all would play much louder on the whole mix. There seems to be a trebbleness to Piranhas material, especially on this recording, where a more bassy feel could have given the record even more bite. But hey, I will admit, all that stuff I just said is bullshit there. I mean FUCK, it’s The Piranhas! Who gives a fuck right? What does it matter that me, Shawn Abnoxious, a worthless worker drone clad in a beret and camouflage shirt and drinking Miller High Life, sez? I don’t matter!!! Low self-worth! Just the place that a person should be when listening to the Piranhas. Stripped down emotions… Bottom of the barrel, when animals attack… When Piranhas kill…
Guitars… Screams… Keyboards… Decadence… I know what it sounds like to go stark raving mad, it sounds like The Piranhas!
Raw, loud, breaking into quirky moments of art damage noise that make me wanna just throw a lamp out my window, The Piranhas show that their "time off" didn’t make them soft. On this 7" they show that nothing is letting up. Not one fucking bit. It’s full-steam ahead. Walls be damned! Roofs be damned! Concrete be damned.
The Piranhas are unstoppable and just like they like it, on the edge. This single signifies the return of one of the best bands in current 'punk-rock'. Neoteric H-Bombs, it can only be surmised that The Piranhas are THEE reckoning force in the Midwest.
The other day I heard a story about a band from San Francisco, who played a certain Midwestern city that shall remain nameless, and were having a pretty rough time. Their big Surf City versus Midwest redneck shallow gene-pool jokes weren’t going over too well with the crowd who were biting back. Fights were breaking out as the crowd united against this band on several fronts. Later someone would overhear the band talking about how the Midwest was just unreceptive to what they were doing and that they were having a hard time in many Midwestern cites like they had in this certain un-named city.
Power is shifting. Away from oceans… To the middle… Attacked from both sides. The Piranhas are one of the bands making a difference in this No Oceans Assault. When instances of defiance circulate back to you from a San Francisco band about a certain city and its certain crowd instances, that’s when you can really tell that you have a united front.
Don’t let me tell you how important it is to get this 7". You should have already figured it out by now. Great bands like The Piranhas doesn’t last forever. We thought we lost them once. We have them back.
No question.
We are lucky.
Welcoming destruction.
Welcoming the re-birth.
(>>Neoteric) (SAB)
(RockNRoll Blitzkrieg PO Box 11906 Berkeley, California 94712)
(Saddle Creek POB 8554 Omaha, NE 68108-0054)

"Voodoo Economics and other American Tragedies" 2XCD
I was first exposed to The Proletariat on that CD, which was also released by Taang, compiling "This is Boston Not LA" and "Unsafe at Any Speed." Don’t get me wrong! I don’t need to waste MY time and YOUR time clearing up any misconceptions because after all, this is a REVIEW, not a plane crash investigation... Gangreen, The F.U.s, The Freeze and others kicked a lot of ass on that CD, but it was the tracks by the Proletariat which really got me interested. I don’t know how long this CD has been out but the moment I saw it I bought it.
If you can hear "Options" and NOT consider it one of the best songs ever... If you can listen to "Options" and not feel like bombing a World Trade Center or joining the closest leftist rebellion of choice (mine is the R.U.N. or REFUSERS UNITED NATION who number close to 35 at the time of this writing and are dug in on 350 acres in the Appalachian foothills of southeastern Kentucky and are said to have the capability to live INDEPENDENT for years... The FBI and other key government orifices currently have them under siege; you won’t hear about this in CNN or read about it in the USA Today... You just have had to stumble onto the story like I did on a recent excursion to Lookout Mountain)... Anyway, like I said, "Options" and other Proletariat songs set standards to judge your peers by. VOODOO!!!! Simple as that...
This double CD has a grand total of 45 songs gathering the aforementioned tracks found on "Unsafe at any Speed" and "This is Boston Not LA", but also includes other Prole releases including a limited edition cassette (yeah, remember those things?) called Distrotion in its entirety, Homestead Records releases like the "Marketplace" b/w "Death of A Headon" single as well as the completeIndependence full-length (also on Homestead), the infamous Soma Holiday that apparently everyone in the world had except me (until now) and last, but not least, four unreleased tracks! Fucking impressive! Yes!!! Impressive! I will admit that the sheer totalness and length of this CD is somewhat overbearing but I’m not complaining too much. You see, like GO AND DO IT, that one CD featuring the massive amounts of Australian Punk bands who did work for Abberant Records, and hell, even the Boston Not LA/Unsafe CD for that matter, there’s just a lot of material on this Double disc. A lot to listen to, a lot to go through… I have had this disc for a week now and JUST NOW is it really sinking in.
The CD booklet, which is thick as a brick, consists of lyrics and pictures of the band. I caught myself looking for some of those good old fashioned liner notes like something I could read while I took a shit or something but to no avail, just song lyrics. I’m betting that there will be more of what I am looking for on their website address, which I have included at the end of this review...
So, for those of you who know nothing about The Proletariat, let me try to give you something to work with by further giving you bands in comparison that you are too fucking lame to have given time of day to. The thing about The Proletariat is that they seemed to start off with a sound like if Conflict had went into a direction heading into art-punk like The Gang of Four. Hard, driving guitars which short and sharp abrasive lyrics that resemble Wire somewhat. Lyrically, the songs deal with mostly politics on a personal level coming across like forgotten or missing pages from a history book on the 20th Century, especially the early to mid 80's because that was their time period... The Proletariat shock with truth. Pull no punches. Some songs, like the lyrics to "Voodoo Economics," are basic and to the point like children’s books are:
Doug picked up the ball.
Doug threw the ball at his friend Roger.
Roger has interesting opinions on the situation in El Salvador!
Its taking tense and at the time, current news and telling it in a language that’s easily understood and consumed by those whose opinions would come to shape society. You see, all those kids slammin' in the pit back in Boston to the Proletariat... Well, not all of them are probably the bastions of independent thoughts and actions like some would wish, but just maybe instead of being the downtown emotionless robot high-rise worker or whatever, someone who listened and bought Proletariat releases might be more sensitive to the HUMANITY around them and actually show compassion in SOME. If even in a small way... Me, FUCK! I use to almost play exclusively with war toys as a child. I had massive amounts of Army Men and would fight massive wars after wars in all parts of my childhood home, mostly after being inspired by a good war movie. I didn’t know what my troops were fighting for, but there were two distinct sides: The Good Guys and The Bad guys. Even though I did field a population of Army mean numbering into the hundreds per side I learned how to recirculate the dead troops into new troops for the cause. I can never remember a real substantial victory (for the good guys of course) leaving more than four or five key soldiers alive. My wars were total and to the end. Just to show you how things change, in 1987, during the beginnings of The Gulf War (WARS WITH SURFBOARDS!) I TIED to see the worth, but didn’t, and ranked amongst the seven people in my school of 3,500 who did not endorse the gulf war. As far as wars go, The Gulf War was probably the coolest war. Smart bombs… The allies united… Clear lines of good versus bad… Gas weapons… Cruise Missiles.... I just wanted into it. It wasn’t for me.
It seems that as the band’s ability grew, The Proletariat began to work other sounds more into their own sound. They don’t outright abandon, but rather explore a bit and add to the abrasive Conflict type guitar and venture into territories and places where you would find bands like Mission of Burma (which just to happen to be from Boston too), The Mob and Zounds. The latter material might not be as loud and as forth as the latter, but really the Proletariat show with songs like "Recollections", "Columns", "Piecework", "Uneasy Peace", and "Instinct" that there was such a thing as hardcore art-punk, and they were that.
This is a great CD and one I feel that many who read Blank Generation could find a soft spot in their hardcore for it. It’s not garage punk. It’s not rock and/or roll. It’s The Proletariat. Get it fool. (SAB)
(Taang Records)

Sluggo "Contradiction" 7" EP
They don’t make them like this one anymore. I know that for a fact.
Sluggo hail, or rather once hailed from Cincinnati, my very hometown. Here in the modern day punk scene of Cincinnati, few know about a Cincinnati Punk Rock (abbreviated with just plain ol’ CPR these days) scene dating back before The Slobs or The Chemo Kids. Hell, even myself... By the time I caught wind that they’re even WAS a local scene back in the early 90’s, I was just witnessing one of the earliest formation periods of The Slobs! Sluggo, along with Human Zoo (The Candy Snatchers titled their latest LP in honor of this band), Musical Suicide, The Customs, The Edge and SS-20 (who still surface from time to time), set the groundwork’s for the modern day CPR scene and its ethics.
With thanks to the now infamous "Bloodstains Across The Midwest" my interest in my scenes history was ignited as I tracked down people, their memories and their records to learn of my scenes past. The interest in local Cincinnati punk history would continue to grow as the re-issue craze and used record bins brought forth my city’s musical past... I was lucky enough to get a hold of a original Contradiction EP one eventful day in the fragile weeks before Shake It Records grand opening when they were letting a few people inside for a "sneek-peek" here and there, which included me, as they were building it. When I saw a copy of Contradiction, and priced at ONLY $1.50 I quickly snatched it up. I would later discover that even though the record was a collectible sought after internet auctions and appearing on want list from time to time, Darrin Blaise (Shake It co-owner and longtime Cincinnati ‘scenester’), who had knew how collectible the record was, intentionally priced the record as any other used 7" would be priced just so someone locally could get a good deal. It’s no fucking coincidence that Shake It Records has grown to be THE BEST record shop in the immediate Ohio/Kentucky/Indiana region... Their heart is in it!
I would take that very record and in true punk fashion-make about 13 bootleg tape copies, mostly for my friends and others who I hoped the music would inspire, who I thought also needed a chance like Darrin gave me; to hear a slice of their scene history. I would also do the same for a Human Zoo LP AND GET BUSTED BIGGER THAN SHIT. My bootleggin’ ‘Han Solo days’ were over, but it was through people like me who really got burned by the spark and felt it an obligation to keep the flame alive, or the people seeing the potential dollar signs that re-releasing highly collectible music entails, that bands like Sluggo live again.
Sluggo play DC type hardcore ala Teen Idles, The Minor Threat, and the band that both of them copied- The Bad Brains. There’s also a bit of Boston Hardcore in there too, like The Freeze and even on one track in particular ("Of It") I can see a little bit of Proletariat shinning... This 7" features eight over all tracks, a new sleeve design with minimal liner notes from Karl Meyer (who was the one who brought the hammer down on my personal re-issue series and also who played bass at one time or other in most of the past Cincinnati bands I mentioned), my copy was also on a light purple-ish vinyl, limited to 501 hand numbered copies (mine is #488), and last but not least, features a new sleeve design.
This is a great re-issue, and I am not just saying that because they are from Cincinnati... I have begun thinking about the OTHER tracks that were mentioned in the liner notes by Karl that were never released. I thought at one time Karl had some sort of deal set up where you could order some sort of CD with ALL the unreleased Sluggo tracks or something like that over the internet (look on their website, I listed it below). Now that I see this 7" re-issued I wonder if this isn’t some sort of test to see if there’s any interest for that other material seeing the light of day... I hope so because I don’t know about YOUR local scene, but here in Cincinnati, despite all we have and potential of what we CAN have, our scene could be better. If all those NOFX clones out there hear great stuff like this 7", I am thinking it might inspire them. Thanks Agitate 96. (SAB)
(Agitate 96 Records 11479 Amboy Ave. San Fernando, CA. 91340)

Slumber Party "Psycedelicate" CD
Well, like the title sez - Slumber… Delicate… Unless you are a big fan of shoe-gazer Mazzy Star-like indie rock, STAY AWAY. I mean, FUCK! Not one fucking scream on the whole disc! Lemme tell you want I wanted: WORDS AND GUITAR ala Sleeter-Kinny, but fuck man, I feel like this disc is putting me into a fucking trance or something.
"Soldier," the third track is pretty cool and later, the tenth track, "I Never Dreamed," is pretty happening too. They both bring to mind The Velvet Underground, which is pretty damn cool, but the upbeat of both these songs is interchanged for even slower ballads that bring the eye-lids down.Psycedelicate is just over-all too dreamy for me right now. After a few listens it begins to develop an Abba like weirdness that I’m appreciating more and more with each listen. But man, I feel like maybe Michelle Shocked is some sort of super-criminal ala The Legion of Doom from the Old Justice League animated show and Slumber Party is her latest attempt to take over the USA or something.
I say we crate up Slumber Party and dropped them in Afghanistan to bring the fortified flying carpet squadrons of Osama Obi-Won Bin Laden to their knees!!!! Hey, wasn’t Rambo 3 set in the then Soviet battled Afghanistan? Those fucking Afgans, LOVE Rambo! Lets give Rambo a M-60 and a few belts of ammo and ear plugs and send him along with the Slumber Party to FIGHT FOR THE UNITED STATES OF FRIGGIN AMERICA!!!!
I will end this review with a patriotic chant:
USA Osama No Way!
USA Osama No Way!
USA Osama No Way!
USA Osama No Way!
USA Osama No Way! (SAB)
(Kill Rock StarsPMB 418 12o NE State Ave. Olympia WA. 98501)

Strokes "Is This It" CD (import)
OK. So, like, this IS it after all. I have waited and waited. I have been a patient puppy daddy. I have eaten my meat. I have eaten my pudding. I have mowed the front lawn.... After a week of working in a screw factory, a worker drone like myself deserves a release like this to make it all worth it. So, like, fuck you.
I notice RIGHT away that the three tracks that were featured on the aforementioned CDEP ("Modern Age", "Barley Legal" and "Last Nite") were all re-recorded with the most notable re-recording (re-recording) being the new version of (UV) "Modern Age." This newer recording delivers a tad bit slower version of "Modern Age" than the first, but yet a version that sports more musical depth. Maybe it’s something to do with the fact that that CDEP was on a different label or something.... All I know is that I caught it.
The way I figure it is that the Strokes had to re-record versions of the songs AGAIN so that now RCA had their own versions of the songs all to their own self- AKA OWNERSHIP! That other single I reviewed last time with "Hard to Explain" and "New York City Cops" is also on this CD. So if you were like me and ran out to gobble up all The Strokes you could find at the time, you may see yourself as being somewhat cheated.
Sure fuckface, that CDEP had DIFFERENT VERSIONS of three of these songs, but I’m not the sort of guy who will claim that I have been cheated just because I flipped out about a band and ran to my local record store to get what I could. No, I don’t feel cheated, BUT I DO understand how 89.67% of the record buying community are fucking cheapskates and whine and cry about the great industry trick of THE SINGLE. I mean FUCK! I LOVE the concept of the single. The single is designed to build oneself up to a great climatic of a full-length release. Case in point: Sex Pistols'Never Mind the Bullocks... Here it is, a Monday in the year twenty Oh one and I came home from work with all intentions of watching the PUNK VHS featuring The Banshees, Iggy Pop, Joy Division and others. I then realized I left that at my parent’s house and have yet to transfer that to THE COMPOUND (where I live) so I tried for The Punk Rock Movie.... My copy has a constant line right in the middle of the picture so off it went... Finally I had to settle for Punk in London, a German based documentary that features some decent X Ray Spex footage along with Jolt, Clash, Chelsea and more. At one point in Punk in London, the camera swoons over a crowd standing outside a sold out Boomtown Rats show. You see, these kids all bought The Sex Pistols singles as they came out and when Never Mind The Bollocks was released, even though it offered little in the ways of new material (like one or two new songs at the time; the more I think about it the more I want to say one...), THEY GOBBLED IT UP!!!!
Am I mad that I got the "Hard To Explain" / "NYC Cops" single THEN two days later bought the CD that had those two songs, plus three more that I previously owned? HELL NO! I’m Shawn Abnoxious - Self-proclaimed Torpedo to Hades. I’m riding the industry. I am gearing up.
Like it or not I realize something... I AM a "rock journalist." I AM PART OF THE INDUSTRY (too bad for you eh?), and if I’m part of this so-called 'The industry' or something, then I am going to have to get quick with their terms and ways of doing things. I’m not in it to destroy the system from within. I’m in this ride for kicks baby! (Gear Up) KICKS! (GEAR UP!!!) I have talked to A & R representatives in the past and you know what? Those Wall Street fucks have NOTHING ON ME. Call it self-worth… Call it arrogance… Call it what you will. I’m going to get up, go out there (getupandgonow), call some record companies and really tell them a thing or two about how things SHOULD BE. If they don’t like it, then OH (fuckin') WELL. Here’s a fucking secret; most times I don’t like me either.
This might be the Freon talking but I FUCKING HATE MY LIFE. There wasn’t a number I called to answer a few questions, or request some sort of home testing booklets to complete a course and home test telling, no, PROCLAIMING I, Shawn Abnoxious, am now OFFICIALLY a rock journalist... I wish it were that simple. I jokingly referred to myself as a 'rock journalist' before... But now I am for real. STAY REAL! I went through the works for The Strokes. The Singles... The Radio play... The Full length... They graduated me. Thanks.
The first song is the title track. It’s a slower ballad bringing up to front a Pixies comparison. "Is This It" sounds like something that would have fit nicely on Surfer Rosa. Then you have the single repeats in all their glory...those tracks have proven themselves to me. The Strokes way of story telling... The comparisons to the Cure, The Velvet underground, Lou Reed... I really feel close to The Strokes and even though I figure they probably think I am some sort of addict of an illegal narcotic all I got to say is... All I got to tell them is... How should I say this bay-be; Spraypaint isn’t illegal.
Watch my triple Doppler radar spread colors of the approaching storm front across my television screen.... Ahhh! haha..... I mean Ahhhh!
There are eleven total tracks on this disc. Five of those songs are not new to me. The rest are. You see, Those other songs prepped me. 'Prepped' is short for PREPARED.
The six songs that are new to me are real balzers. More Velvet Underground... Lou Reed assault... The Strokes attack with artistic venom. They bite like a snake that has real bright colors and very deadly poison, like the kind you see those crazy Australian's on TV handle... The Strokes songs are infectious and deadly and leave their mark in your system. You’re bitten and the venom is coursing through your veins hours before you realize you been bitten, Is This It is a great fucking full length!
Everyone is doing what they do with the Strokes, either you love them or you go about belittling them. Either you are going to be fine with comparisons to bands like The Pixies, Lou Reed, the Velvet Underground, and The Buzzcocks...OR YOU’RE NOT!
Is This It is ultimately designed and released for people who want it. For people who are searching... For the Neoteric... So, in some ways it’s limiting because truthfully, it’s years beyond its time. I know, from spending time in the trenches on the other side of a flying V bass I call THE SHARK, that the fact that some people grow unfathomable hatred for this band is understandable and enjoyed by The Strokes. Punk-rock, or more importantly, The NEOTERIC Punk-Wave, is about turning those negatives into positives and positives into supra-positives. No win situations into win/win situations… I see this quality in The Strokes. It’s a quality that is a very important lesson if you are going to be serious about creating music. It’s hard to learn and not everyone who says they understand such concepts really does. Hell, maybe even I am full of bullshit. In fact, I probably am. That possibility exists, but here, in The Strokes I see qualities I admire in musicians and bands. The qualities and talents are selective, and those who have the ability of SUPRA-POSITIVES are rare, I would even say we, or they, depending how much I fuck things up at key moments of my own battles, are elite. Saying the Strokes are elite is a real dickhead thing to do, I know, but here I am, SHAWN ABNOXIOUS, wearing my I KNOW I’M GOING TO HEAVEN BECAUSE I SPENT MY TIME IN HELL Vietnam Veteran’s T-shirt, DEALING TRUTH like it’s a fucking new can of gold spray-paint. Get yer bags. Not everyone will get as fuck up as everyone else but huffing this bag of paint with me WILL separate the rock from the roll. The Punk from the NEOTERIC...
I see this LOVE/HATE The Strokes story being played out time after time in my own record store and I am sure the scene is played out countless times around the world... Or rather I hope the scene is replayed because I like the Strokes. I like it when I put such numbers and beliefs into bands like The Strokes and all people have to offer back is something like "They suck" or "They are rip offs" or something CHILDISH. I like telling people stuff like THE STROKES ARE GOING TO SAVE ROCK AND ROLL because they look at me like some sort of spray paint huffer addict or something and feel urgency because they, the fucking childish fucks that had ATTEMPTED to belittle me and MY BANDS and MY BELIEFS, have the feeling in the back of their head that I COULD be right. I COULD BE dead on the money. The Strokes COULD save rock and roll and when they do, those fucks that wanted to destroy as opposed to build will be lost in disco heaven...
Everything has been brought back to basic.
Back 2 base.
The destroyed has been destroyed.
It’s time to build. The Stokes build...
The Neoteric Dawn has arrived in full force. You’re either with it or you’re a casualty of it. One way...or the other... Hate to be so pushy right now, like we’re on a cliff, looking down, and here I am, making you choose your path, but the time is coming. Without further delay… It’s do or die papaw. You can’t handle a band like The Strokes so stay here while those WORTHY of the NEXT STEP jump.
Newer non single tracks to watch for: "Take It or Leave It", a scorcher... It’s a roller-coaster ride of ultimatums. Truly an anthem for The Neoteric bloodletting... One of the best songs ever written. "Soma", soft on the ears... A sleeper track that grows on you... It takes you from the beginning to the end. It’s a ride on a futuristic tramway connecting points where no one has ever been. Everyone is afraid to get off at the next stop because beyond something better is bound to be something worth discovering. Stop. And Go.
The Spaceships won’t understand...and that’s a GOOD thing! (SAB)

Teenage Rejects "Dont Care About Anything!" 7"
I like my drama in form of Days of our Lives, televised cheerleading championships, Olympic sports like gymnastics and ice skating, or at the very least, movies by the master of drama himself, Harmony Korine whose latest movie Julian Donkey-Boy is a pure fucking masterpiece!!! See it if you dare.
That out of the way I have been following Rip off Records for a while, I would like to say from the beginning, but I would be lying. I caught onto the whole thing in the earliest releases, but not the beginning. As it stands I have, I would say, about 93% of the Rip Off catalog. I would religiously buy them as I found them in local record stores. It didn’t matter what, through the years since releasing records, Rip Off has become a name that I can trust. Yeah, some releases are better than others and even still, some of the releases don’t hold up too well over time, but still, there has been some really impressive releases under the Rip Off banner and this 7" continues the tradition of fine punk-rock.
The Teenage Rejects are from Wisconsin; Green Bay or some shit like that. I never been to Green Bay but sorta figured that, like everywhere else I suppose, it had a overwhelming population of pop-punk. The Teenage Rejects ARE NOT that at all. The Rejects, who I was assured ARE teenagers when I bought this 7", play fast, upbeat classic re-punk (the ‘re’ stands for revivalist) like a mix between the Circle Jerks and The Motards.
The sleeve confuses me a bit and appears to list three songs when in fact, after 50 releases, Rip Off holds true to the one-sided single. I know times in the past yielded double-sided singles in limited quantities, so maybe this is one of those cases where a third song exists on 50 copies or something. I just hope that another fine Rip off tradition holds true - that after this single, a full length follows. I like what the Rejects have to offer me. I can’t believe I am saying this, but after some of the stuff I have been listening to lately, and even playing now in my own musical projects, it is nice to get some garage-punk back in the old ears.
I am not sure if it’s just a Cincinnati trend or what, but 7" sales have slacked off to a trickle in my local stores. This means great 7"s like this one could have easily passed me up. Truth be known, when I initially picked this 7" up I didn’t even know, nor had reason to figure, this was a Rip Off single. I’m going to glance over my fanzines and make a list for my favorite record store and try to revive the ‘seven revolution’. At the top of that list: ANYTHING BY RIP OFF RECORDS. (SAB)
(Rip Off Records 581 Maple Avenue San Bruno, CA 94066)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Wax Idols // Siouxsie & The Banshees

File:Siouxsie & the Banshees-The Scream.jpg"Their second one sounds like Siouxsie and The Banshees" Zach Braun of Random Old Records said... And that was OK with me. I’m a Banshees fan. The Scream (Polydor, 1978) is a great released. Packed with shrieking vocal pops and cracks and pounding drums, The Scream was post-punk before there was post-punk. Since all of the tracks compromising The Scream being written during the bands formative years during the initial London punk-rock outbreak of 76/77, the album is different. There’s urgency behind it. However, the quick follow-up Join Hands (Polydor, 1979) fell a bit short with me personally and shown digression or progression (depending on how you look at it) into a more gothic, dark and ethereal sound that the band would build upon. Whereas Join Hands (and the next three full-lengths) has its good moments, it paled in comparison to the mighty impact of The Scream. So when I went back thru the recent additions to the new/used vinyl at Shake it! Records and accidentally found Wax Idols' Discipline + Desire, I was a bit taken back. I could only give credit to the divine because I hardly ever-- in fact I cant remember the last time-- I cruised through a bin of records hunting for a find and went back through them for whatever reason. So Zach Braun’s comment, in conjunction with actually finding this record, seemed meant to happen.

File:Siouxsie & the Banshees-Join Hands.jpgMy re-turning of No Future (Hozac, 2011) was pleasant. Great album. Great sound. It's a modern classic. The dystopian lyrics seemed to catch my ear more closely than before. Just like great bands/songs/Albums it only gets better. My preliminary assessment held true. Earlier views on No Future held solid LAMF. I still highly recommend it.

Initially, Discipline + Desire frustrated me. I can’t remember the last time I had to 'work' to get an LP's small hole onto the pin of my trusty turntable. Yes, the record was 'used' and the vinyl looked brand new, but there’s no fucking way anyone actually listened to it. It took a pen and knife in conjunction with my few disappearing talents as a working class zero to get it on my turntable.

 Discipline + Desire (Slumberland, 2013) didn’t initially hit me as the great find I initially hoped for. Yeah, it has moments but I didn’t hear bits of Siouxsie and The Banshees flavor of The Scream nor the feel of Join Hands. No Future appeared to be as comparable to Scream as Discipline was to Siouxsie and The Banshees on a fictional album that could be placed in-between The Banshees Join Hands (Polydor, 1979) and Kaleidoscope (Polydor, 1980). That is, if Robert Smith hadn’t pulled double duty touring with a disintegrating Banshees line-up as well as The Cure and 'saving' Siouxsie and The Banshees in the process. Imagine if Smith had disbanded The Cure and stayed on as guitarist for The Banshees... Would that have been better? Worse? The same? The only answer I can choose from those three questions is different. Siouxsie and The Banshees may have been too ambitious for their own good. In-between touring, recording and releasing albums. Time and development may have helped this band gel and stick together. .Just for reference, JuJu (Polydor, 1981) is the last Siouxsie and The Banshees recording I would deem as listenable. 

File:Siouxsie & the Banshees-Kaleidoscope.jpgWhen you’re writing about music, sometimes the most important thing isn’t if something is good, or bad because all of that shit is relative. What matters is that you know what you are getting yourself into. What matters is you put it in simple, easy to understand real talk. Music reviews should be. First and foremost, short, to the point and solid. Like a twitter post#. Short fragments to allow the readers brain to become curious. These are all rules that I break because I’m more of a music enthusiast than reviewer. I have the nasty habit of giving topics the space to flex out and let me say what I want to say. I’m too damn expressive for my own good sometimes#. My writing is an in-depth exploitation of a short Thesis that always starts with the band name. My writings are ‘Why?’ expanded beyond fever comprehension. Length is relative to you, not me.

See? There I go again.
File:Siouxsie & the Banshees-Juju.jpg 
Discipline hit me with less of a punch than expecting. I think you have figured that out by now, but that’s OK. This band can’t keep pumping out record after record like No Future. Whether skill and ability caught up to The Wax Idols or if a producer’s image and/or vision led to Discipline being this way, I applaud them. Touching on Early 80's Siouxsie sound and adding a touch of the Cure and "Riding on the Metro" era Berlin and just a slathering of Missing Persons thrown in for good measure, Discipline found a good spot with me. More so than anything else, I’m wondering what’s next? Anytime you ask that question about any band, you like them and that’s saying a lot.

#2 This is the review as I should have wrote: Wax Idols Discipline + Desire stretch their previous release with sonic referencing to post-punk & new wave sounds. Different but note-worthy.

#1 I’m working on this actually. Coming soon: ‘Rapid Reviews’ 139 Characters or less.

Friday, September 20, 2013

[*STREET*DREAMS*] [2] [Cincinnati,Ohio]

Pictures of the intersection of Ingol and Medill Alley 
in Cincinnati, Ohio's Northside Community.

Medill Alley (Westward)
IIngo Alley (Southward)
Medill Alley (Eastward)

Ingol Alley (Northward)

Thursday, September 19, 2013

EAR PLUGS IV: Beating the Dead Horse; The Ramones are Dead.

olde ty-me
The horse struggles to breathe with every shallow breath having a slim chance of being its last effort. Waiting... Waiting... Wait... ing... As much as you would personally hate to say it, or do it- or watch it. He raises the pistol. He is going for the quick way. Such a waste of an important bullet, but none-the-less faster and more effective. Quicker. More humane.

C.J. its all up to you now.
Placing the pistols shaft into the horses ear, it would be an easier entry into the animals brain. Sometimes, the bullet gets lodged in the skull, or at the last minute the animal jerks its head, struggling for life when the animal itself knows each moment is measured and time is closing... To ensure the small bullets killing potential, the barrel was shoved as far into the horses ear... The animal whined and moved a bit. Fighting to live for every moment of life left.


It was over.

Welcome back to THWART and another installment of Ear Plugs. Starting off... I have four LP's from DEAD BEAT RECORDS... Back in the day, Dead Beat was a standard. Years later, its even more important. Nowadays Dead Beat Records + Mailorder is the Incognito Records of today. Excellent selection. Good prices. Great quality... I thought at one time I was too jaded to ever really like to hunt and find great bands. Was there any great bands left to be found, listened to and watch out for? Yes to all of those. First up is CURTAINS! True i did listen to the first side on 45 and most of the second side too until I discovered that its not a 12"EP, its a good ol' fashioned 45rpm LP. Deep in The Night City lands hard, precise jabs with effects driven sometimes creepily minimal goth-punk delivering a mix of mostly Bauhaus and Chrome type punk but backed with the vocalist from Pylon. At other select times I can hear touches of A Certain Ratio ie Curtains' "Gamma Cicada", The Fall with "Fire Party" and its Night City B-Side significant other "The Mollusk" who bring to mind Small Parts era No Means No too. Fans of Lost Sounds and/or Subtonix, this is your new favorite band. Your welcome. 

Next up is FIST CITY which I assume is named after the Loretta Lynn song (YOU LOOK IT UP) bring to mind a mixture of the riot grrl sounds of the mid-late 90's as if Bratmobile and Heavens to Betsy tried to play songs exactly like Sleeter Kinny and not only failed beautifully but ended up sounding like a mix of a fem heavy Rites of Spring. On Hunting You you have lo-fi K Records punk that has the styling of not only those grrrl bands, but a bit of The Cleans trademark bounce behind them. At times the vocals are mudded together with some heavy reverb and delay that is annoying (at times) but its not a big negative point. In the early millennials, this is the sort of band and the sort of record that would be spinning when you showed up with a 12 pack of Strohs and a Chevy Cavalier back seat full of amps for band practice and before the 12 pack gets cracked your asking "Who in the fuck is this?" How do I know? Been there. Done that! This LP rocks and that is that. Worth your attention. 

LE FACE attack with the twangy clean guitars, anxiety turned into raw sound and energy yielding a strong fresh sound. They say "fuck" in EVERY song... Hits like a new  line-up of KBD sweethearts The Child Molesters and Chicago's Mentally Ill. Totally brilliant in every way. A while back I reviewed THE SICK THRILLS (Columbus, OH) LP-EP and yeah, the sound did suffer a bit but you could look past it to see fucking brilliance. Well, Le Face tap into that same brilliance with a better mix. Yeah, I heard this band has links to Le Shok... I could just as easily research that and tell you but I'm not. The links, which do exist even though I don't know exactly where are not important. No, the mention of a connection to Le Shok should be enough to perk up your ears. it was enough for me to perk mine up! Yeah, I'm a real fucking sucker... But this time, it paid off. 

When I see a description of a band, and PVC are noted... Im there. Thats was the case with MODERN PETS   whose latest release Sorry Thanks still has that new record smell. Whereas the whole PVC thing isnt really that solid in my own viewpoints, Listens of this LP in conjunction with Tidewaters THE GREAT DISMAL SWAMIS made me fall in love with garage-punk all over again. And yes, that's a GOOD thing. Almost instantly I hear some Spits shining through as the needle hits the records, almost simultaneously a light bulb goes out. One of those kinda light-bulbs that they don't make anymore, a classic light bulb. Having that sharp monotone singing style  bouncing with the ripping guitar that The Spits have sort of claimed as their own... Well, them and A FRAMES , Thank god I have the certainty of garage-punk still in my life to smother all the bad times. This time around, as with Modern Pets,  there's more tools and better tools to record these bands. I can only wonder how THE MOTARDS first record would have sounded like nowadays... Too bad what happened to those guys. Not that i really know what happened and/or een if it was bad, I just assumed it, with it being relative didnt work out. So, anyway, I have been writing this EAR PLUGS for quite sometime now.. Just yesterday I got another slew f Dead Beat Records and preliminary listens are strong. If its been a while since you check Dead Beat out, then please do so now. Top/Prime stuff. A name that will undoubtedly be showing up more on Thwart. 

Speaking of THE SPITS, I have decided  whilst listening to another title-less LP on IN THE RED RECORDS that this band is The Ramones of contemporary punk. Their sound is consistently good in every category available. One day, in the mid-late 90's there seemed to be a time when high levels  of guilt swept through scenes worldwide acknowledging The Ramones and their their true worth. So bands set about a stream of emulated Ramones Tribute albums to show and declare loyalty. I never really got that. I felt it was too much of a bandwagon to jump on. Yeah, it was nice effort and all but verily much so a gimmick. It was a nice, unneeded effort, but bands in the coming years will look at The Spits the same way and will ultimately fail to emulate this band, their records or attitude. I don't even know if this is the latest LP. That's not important... 

What is important is that I'm gonna get to right the wrong of missing The Spits last Cincinnati show! On October 17th at Mayday join me in righting that wrong. I don't want you to have that guilt/Burden that I never thought would be relinquished from my grasp. Hell, I may even slam-dance.. 

Please note: The Ramones are dead. No empire last forever. Beard-nod

At first I was MEGA pissed that I bought the FANFARLO Rooms Full of Light (LP version) because it included a digital download of the songs... To my disbelief, when I opened the LP to rotate it, lo' and behold, the digital download had EXPIRED! AAAAaGGGHHHH! I 'voiced' my disgust to Fanfarlo via Twitter hoping for an 'Amos to the Rescue' moment but alas, I was the sucker with this one. Well played music industry, well played. Initial listens were not strong. I have seen oodles of this bands videos on you tube and honestly, almost everyone of them are better than any recording on this record... or so I thought, initially... But I came round quickly finding these songs invading my mind and making me hum-a -long with them as they played. Although, i will say their follow-up, Reservoir hit harder and faster. Still, a great, amazing band I recommend from my softer, more whispered side

A copy of Plastic Ono Band by JOHN LENNON arrived from a secret admirer? Honestly, Ive never been ultra impressed with the Beatles stuff or much less their solo offerings. This CD gave me a greater understanding. Quickly, one by one the infection sank in and I 'got it'. "Well Well Well"... "Working Class Hero" shit yeah. Fuck the Beatles (still, for now) but these songs are timeless. I have always dug Yoko Ono... my views changed when I found out she was involved with Ted Turners Georgia Guidestone Project (Were all entitled to a stubborn mistake or two or three) but recently I publicly forgave her for that. 

Preliminary listens to THE WALKMEN's latest effort Heaven are strong. Basically, early on I became entrapped with their sound. If Roy Orbison was a young dude, this would be what he sounded like. Album for album, The Walkmen have released much better material than everyone darlings The Strokes, Kings of Leon and Interpol combined. Yeah, I'm a fucking sucker for this shit whatever you wanna call it. Is Heaven the same ol same ol from The Walkmen? Maybe bit with slight production differences... This seems to me to be a 'top of the hill' record. They fought their fight, won their battles and need something new to prove. Complacency is a great, but terrible spot to be in. This could quite honestly be a final Walkmen album... I'm sure there's pressures for solo carreers and such.. Im sirry, Paul Banks solo is just Interpol. No use for it... But anyhow, this is a great listen, ANOTHER great album by The Walkmen... if you like that sort of thing. Heaven is worth at least a mention even if it sounds more like a confession. 

To much adeiu, By reccomendations of Gunther 8544 and Joe from SHAKE IT RECORDS I was luckily enpough re-introduced to THE BATS and picked up a compilation of their singles totled Completely Bats at Shake It Records. Bouncy NZ post-punk THE CLEAN sound like demos to The Bats and with good reason (so figure it out yourself) and yes, Im sure Shake It Records can get in more copies. Please let the official record be known that I now possess both ICEAGE Lp's New Brigade and You're Nothing. So everything is OK. I see this band as the modern equivelant of The Germs, I have said it before, I will say it again. This is one of those bands that you love or you despise. Im sure they know that... These LPs are worth the lyric book that comes with them that could pass of for a poetry chapbook or zine. Awesome. Until next time, keep plugging your ears with music, bullets or your fingers. Whichever comes first.

The ears have already been getting plugged for installment #5 as this installment comes to a close... More Dead Beat arrivals have me buzzed and who knows what else may come my way. until next time, later.

I Miss This Band
The Great Dismal Swamis

"You cant be what you were.. There's no movement in a bad mouth"