Sunday, October 19, 2014

Uniform - Black and Vain (CD)

Before I get on with the review I feel there is something I have to say about the label this CD is on: Morphius. I love them BUT I can hardly find any of their releases. I don’t know what it is about Cincinnati, but even though my personal record store of choice, a record store I feel is one of the best record stores in the region, there is still trouble finding their releases. I even called the label themselves to try and rectify the situation.
I told them their distribution sucked.

I told them I had been looking for their releases in stores and from a recent trip to Atlanta, Georgia I asked personnel at WAX-N-FACTS about releases by Morphius and The Fuses and they were like, "Who?"
I told them there was one band on their label that I had read about in Maximum Rock and Roll, who I couldn’t remember BUT one that I had looked for, couldn’t find it and just sort of forgot about.

This band turned out to be called National Razor, and I can’t find their shit either. If they had any promo copies left I was told I would be sent one. If not, they would let me mail order one for base cost. Even though I KNOW this isn’t how shit like this is supposed to go down; if someone REALLY wanted to hear my band and I figured it was probably going to get a good review, I WOULDN’T be talking ‘Base Cost’ bullshit, BUT THAT’S OK! I’m not above buying records now just because review material in the past few months has drastically reduced my record buying allowance. I still buy CDs; it’s just now I can be more Lewis & Clark about it and build up my music collection of Les Savy Fav releases.

I understand how there is supposed to be some form of struggle to find worthy music. In fact, I endorse it. With that in mind, Morphius, I KNOW, is one of the best labels out there. Consistently releasing product that gives me the fucking heebeegeebees. Good job.

So what it boils down to is that if you can find Morphius releases, good for you. If not then it doesn’t matter how much you like this review, if you can’t go down to your favorite underground music store and find their shit, you’re OUT OF LUCK.

So, The Uniform!!!!! Now this is a band I have liked since I first heard them. On past releases they have matured, seemingly alongside The Fuses, into a driving force of the Neoteric Punk/Wave. I know, I just know, that everything would be a bit more dull nowadays without The Uniform.

This CD didn’t strike me as hard as their splits with the first. After several listens I re-noticed the comparisons to Gang of Four and Mission of Burma, but on Black and Vain I could hear something more, and totally out of place: The Flesh Eaters! Yeah, Chris D! On Black and Vainthere is an inherent stripped down art-folkness to it. Exposed and bleeding… Real and saturated with even angst… That GOOD angst where someone approaches you and calmly sez, "I hate your Fucking guts" and then hugs you. That shit is freaky.

Compared to past Uniform releases, Black and Vain MAY seem a bit more reserved but don’t mistake that for weakness. Black and Vain has underlying currents of greatness. EXCELLENT songwriting and structuring…
"Calling All Eunuchs"
"These Guys are Geniuses"
"Dictionary of Deconstructionalist"
Some great fucking songs! I get the inherent feeling that Black and Vain represent a turning point for the Uniform, all for the better too. The Uniform is one of those bands that spend their entire career releasing kick ass music that HARDLY ever gets noticed for one reason or other.
I am noticing.

Let’s change that. Lets not wait until 2009 to buy a box-set of hard to find rare and unreleased Uniform tracks to really appreciate this band. Let’s activate the HERE. NOW.

I’m serious about my music. I care. Caught in the Crossfire, I do what I do because I am passionate.