Saturday, January 17, 2015

Buck Rogers Is All But Dead

At one point maybe five or six years ago, if you ordered a bunch of stuff from any of the record label distros they'd throw a handful of CDs into the box as they were mailing it out, just to get rid of 'em. No doubt the CD boom came crashing down so hard that they all got stuck with thousands of lame clunker CDs that were never gonna sell, so it became like that Mitch Hedberg joke about people on the sidewalk handing out flyers: "here, YOU throw this away". I don't think I ever actually listened to any of the free CDs that I got -- I mean, what the fuck do I care about Small Brown Bike -- but when I found a bunch of them in a box while I was moving a couple of months ago, it was like 2007 all over again. I couldn't tell what this one was at first; the spine just says "My Heart Is A Merciless Piece Of Metal And Fire" so I figured what the heck, any band with a name like that has got be completely hilarious, right? Then I looked it up on Amazon, and that's just the title of the album while the band's name is really Crucible. The only funny part to all of this was reading the bitchy review that some nerd left on Amazon because he apparently thought this CD was by another band named Crucible (some prog-rock/Genesis rip-off) instead. Gosh, I hope you were able to get your 9 cents (plus shipping) back, nerdy Marillion-ass-sucking guy.

Crucible -

Interest Rate of Deception"

Sunday, January 4, 2015

I Am Extremely Big And I Fail Constantly

I got picked for MRR's Monday Photo Blog the other week, which was kinda cool. It's actually the second time I've been picked, so I'm practically my own category on the MRR website now (this isn't true, I'm just making it up to be a jerk). You can scope 'em out by clicking on the links here:

Monday Photo Blog: Dave Brushback (2)

(Zipperhead, Ausmuteants, Protomartyr, Downtown Boys, Waste Management, Boston Strangler)

Monday Photo Blog: Dave Brushback (1)

(Fuckheads, Salvation, Rational Animals, Warning//Warning, Lushlife)

You guys like The Speedies, right? You'd fucking better.

The Speedies -

"Let Me Take Your Photo"

Saturday, January 3, 2015

All My Crimes Are Catching Up To Me

Peeple Watchin' interview in MRR #368, with four of my photos in it (plus one from Ali, hers is the one that's better than mine)

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

What I Am Really Hungry For Doesn't Exist

I was out at a food place last night, the one that normally gives you a chocolate chip cookie w/ their $5 meal, only they left out the cookie and when I asked about it they told me, "we ran out, there'll be some more in like five minutes". So I figured fuckit, I'll wait, I'll get it afterwards when I'm done eating, because I kinda like fresh chocolate chip cookies. Plus, you know, they owe me a cookie, motherfucker. When I went back to the counter a few minutes later, the guy says "well, they just came out. They're kinda soft, you probably won't want one yet because it'll bend." I said, "that's fine, I don't care." Then the guy says "well, it's kinda hot, you don't want to burn yourself." Fucker was trying to talk his way out of giving me the cookie! I mean, come on, for a 2" chocolate chip cookie to burn you, that's gotta be the hottest cookie in the universe. Guy's acting like he's about to hand me molten lava or hot moon rocks or something. Go in the back, put the metal suit on with the Homer Simpson tongs, and hand me my cookie.

Anyway, here's some pictures from a show that I went to.

The Boston Strangler -

"Take Control"

Waste Management -

"Get Your Mind Right"

The Peacebreakers -

"You Exploit You"

Saturday, November 8, 2014

I Used To Look Like Sean Penn But Then I Grew Up

You probably haven't been around long enough to know this (I realize not everyone's as old as Tim Hinely), but when bands like Killdozer and Drunks With Guns first started coming out, a few writers took the obvious angle that they were "anti-hardcore bands": like, thrash was supposed to be fast, and these bands were seemingly playing as slow as possible, so they must be trying to sound like the opposite of hardcore, right? I'm not sure if that was really the case (I'm also not sure that Byron Coley actually liked Lost Generation, either, but the review he wrote sure seemed like it), but if Killdozer sounded like anything early-on it was probably like a good American knock-off of the Birthday Party. Although hardcores like myself didn't know it at the time, I mean, who knew about the Birthday Party back then, other than they were some band that Tim Yohannan made fun of once (fuck MRR, too). To me, they just sounded like some cool Wisconsin rock band, contemporaries of Die Kreuzen and Couch Flambeau and Mecht Mensch and so forth. Sounds like a pretty good scene to me. Then Killdozer got older and everyone started liking their Neil Diamond and Black Oak covers, so they started putting one those on every record, which got old really quick and so they descended into some sort of novelty act, like Shel Silverstein does Flipper, or something. This single ("The Pig Was Cool") came out long after they kicked one of the brothers out, which kinda sucked. I've never bothered to listen to the EMF cover on the flipside and I'm not about to start now.

Killdozer -

"The Pig Was Cool"

Friday, October 17, 2014

Once You Realize That You're Not Doing Anything Special, You'll Be Okay

It's a wonder that I caught onto this record at all, since I don't really dig the first four tracks and at times the singer's voice reminds me of some song by Rash of Stabbings (you don't know who they are, but that's not a compliment). Then the fifth track, "Steady Hands", kicks in and sounds a lot like something that would've been on Ace of Hearts or one of those Propeller compilations -- like Busted Statues or Art Yard, totally -- and I'm completely sold on this record from there on out. Oh look, I'm comparing an Austin band to a bunch of bands from Boston, that's really brilliant of me.

Been waiting weeks for this one, or ever since I saw Cottaging in Providence and they pinned my ears back, leaving me wondering why I hadn't really been paying attention to them before (I guess being the only band left out of the whole Cult Maternal mess that's any good will do that) (or being in Impose, there's the fuckin' kiss of death). Live, they were some kind of alloy of Rifle Sport/Tar/Man-Sized Action -- i.e., tuff Midwest-Chicagoland style rock -- tho' on record they're a lot closer to pre-disko TV Ghost or any wunna those Cramps/Birthday Party type bands, I suppose, only with lotsa of other weird sounds/fucked-up hiss and industrial-noise shit added on top. Don't let my lack of unique vocabulary fool you, this is total pummeling swellsville from start to finish. I mean, New England isn't even really all that good (not as long as Chris Prorock still lives there) but if Cottaging isn't one of New England's top handful of bands then I haven't been getting out often enough, I guess.

I don't want to be the first person to compare DeGreaser to one of Timmy Vulgar's projects, although judging by the press kit, apparently I am. And while there's no way that "Rougher Squalor" carries any of Timmy's, um, nuance, a lot of this does sound like "Monster Walk", for instance. Which is to say, your appreciation for loudness, filth, and the excessive use of wah-wah pedals will probably have a huge role in whether or not you like this record.

Heavy alt-rock, like a cross between Bush and some shoegazey band, with a singer who sounds just like that jerkoff from Jane's Addiction. I'm probably making this out to be a lot worse than it really is, because this is way better than most albums I've heard where the songs are all five minutes long and sound a lot like any number of songs that I've already heard before.

Monofonus Press is one of my favorite labels, or they came out with that goofy John Wesley Coleman LP a couple of years back that I really liked a lot, at least, and they've had something-or-other to do with The Rebel/Country Teasers. This one took me totally out of left field (like Darrell Johnson benching Bernie Carbo) because I'm not usually looking for this sort of stuff -- meaning trippy psych-krautrock space jams from long-haired bands out of Italy -- but I wouldn't be listening to this Trans Upper Egypt album if I didn't really like it, especially with that killer new Breakout 7" laying just few feet away, practically begging to be listened to. Beats the fuck outta me how to describe this, what the fuck do I look like, Everett True? Fuck that guy.

Straight up, there's like two or three really good songs on this album, I'm not kidding. Not sure how they're getting away with calling this band "The Pagans" (it's a couple guys who were in Keel plus the piano tech from Whitesnake, I'm pretty sure), but "I Want a Date", "I Just Got Up", and "Detention Home" are damn-near ball-crunchers. Then there's a remake of "(Us And) All Of Our Friends Are So Messed Up", which actually tops the one on "Family Fare" (the last studio-recorded 'album' by the Pagans before this one, I think? (???)), except that Mike Hudson's voice is more phlegmy than snotty now, but still, he's great to hear. Dude's a legend in my lifetime, if you're not up on The Pagans then I don't know what the fuck you're doing. There's some lengthy spoken-word-over-Peter-Laughner-style tracks that are way worse than anything on that (similar but actually good) Hudson-Styrene album, maybe they should've scrapped those and pressed the rest to vinyl with a shitty xerox sleeve and it would've made one of the best 7"-ers of the year, or at least one of 2014's biggest surprises. Which is a whole lot better than "8 tracks in a .zip file that only Byron Coley and some smelly old misdirected newspaper writers will spend time listening to".

Mocking the press release when reviewing a record is generally not a good idea -- I mean, who among us hasn't been embarrassed by something they'd written when they were younger/not concentrating? Certainly not me, and that's just the six times so far tonight -- but the one for this record is so stupid ("punk isn't dead, it just has an identity crisis") that it almost makes you not wanna listen to it. Which would be too bad, because the record itself is pretty good. If you're into the whole Dirtnap Records/Ramones-core thing (Steve Adamyk Band, Marked Men, etc etc) but find yourself sometimes leaning towards something darker with heavier riffs like Nervosas maybe, then Neighborhood Brats should be your deal. And I'd offer Deranged to write their press releases for them, but between celebrity judge appearances on Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp Battle of the Bands and updating this blog once a month, my hands are kinda full these days.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

There's People I Know Who'll Bug Me The Rest Of My Life

Counter Intuits is Ron House (TJSA, Psandwich, etc) and Jared Phillips (Times New Viking) collaborating on lo-fi rock shit, which, if you're anything like me, seems like a great idea the minute you hear about it. There was a full album last year, "Sheet of Hits", which I don't actually own, and then this tape, which came out earlier this year as an edition of 100. Most of this sounds pretty much like what you'd expect -- cheaply-recorded falling-apart rock -- but then there's the four-minute-long "Deep Storage Space" which could be some lost Gene Clark or Gram Parsons nugget and fits in pretty well alongside some of Ron's Great Plains/solo output. The same lab' is also working on a Mordecai tape, which you'll be able to pick up soon from Floridas Dying, and that one seems like a great idea, too.

Counter Intuits -

"Password (Is Password)"

Saturday, October 11, 2014

This Is What Parties Must've Been Like Before All The Squares Took Over

Apparently there's an Action Swingers bandcamp page now, to go along with the somewhat-of-a-reissue 7" that came out on Total Punk last year, as well as the "Quit While You're Ahead" LP vinyl issue due out on In The Red next year. Which probably means I'm falling behind with capitalizing on the Action Swingers resurgence by posting the one piece of Action Swingers vinyl that I own (other than that shitty Noiseville comp), the "Fear of A Fucked Up Planet" 7" -- a Public Enemy reference, presumably, though if it's not I'm still gonna say that it is. "Fear of A Fucked Up Planet" isn't nearly as good as the TV Eye ripoff "Kicked In The Head", but not much is anyway, and besides it's still a pretty good chunk of dirt-and-fuzz-laden junk rock presuming you don't really know any better. I'm chickening out and posting just a Bandcamp link here instead of an actual vinyl rip, so as to not deprive Ned Hayden of any well-deserved funds. Ex-members of Pussy Galore, B.A.L.L., Velvet Monkeys, Dinosaur Jr, Toto, Billy & The Beaters, Rupert Holmes' touring band (one of those I just made up, something that you'll find happens fairly frequently around here). Preparing to watch those Google hits rack up starting right now, brother.