Thursday, March 29, 2018

Samhain - Live - Minneapolis, 04.12.86

Label: bootleg
Year: 1986

Legitimate question: is there a "cooler" band than Samhain?
The whole thing. Musically, visually, historically, or in terms of mystery?

I'll answer: no. No, there really isn't. You can come up with a thousand memes of Glenn Danzig carrying cat litter to his car, or recount stories of him getting cold cocked by a meathead backstage...but you can't top Samhain, and how diabolically brilliant they were. It just won't happen.

So, please bask in the black light of this rampaging live set from 7th Street Entry in Minneapolis from 1986, that has the band raiding their entire discography , save 'Final Descent'. It's not pristine, but I've yet to hear any Samhain live recording that is (if you got one, holla atcha boy). This one does the trick just fine.

Dark aspect,
The breed divine.
Knee deep,
The blood of swine.


Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Season To Risk - Season To Risk

Label: Red Decibel
Year: 1993

A true relic of the early 90s, complete with major label shell company record release and attempts to "build ground buzz by pushing hard to college radio". But, in spite of it, Season To Risk put out a really solid record of alternative rock music as funneled through a noise rock filter. How you feel it's aged, well, that's up to you, and will most likely be a reflection of your age.
As for myself, I honestly believe that had I not seen Season To Risk before hearing them on record, I probably would have written them off as another Paw kind of band. You know, like a band that has some cool riffs and genuine heaviness but sabotages it with too much forced melody? There were lots of those bands during this time period. But, Season To Risk's live show was really loud, and aggressive, and mean and all that. So, when I saw the record I grabbed it, and could "hear" it as the live band. Don't know how you will "hear" it now, but I'm curious to know. If you can get excited by Helmet, Quicksand, 700 Miles, Barkmarket, and JJ's Paradise Players Club, and you aren't scared off by some actual singing...then I feel pretty good you'll enjoy it.
The other thing that keeps me revisiting this record every so often is what Season To Risk did AFTER it, how they got progressively dirtier and weirder but kept a distinct sound that was identifiable. It's like they learned from this one, and worked really hard to hone their songs. Plus, they put out a split with Glazed Baby. So...I mean shit, that makes them worth it right there. Also did a split with Starkweather, if that helps. They had Derek Hess drawing their posters and covers and stuff...they had it going on.
Members were in and went on to be in: Shiner, Glazed Baby, Roman Numerals, Life and Times, Libido Boys, Year Of The Rabbit, Joy Circuit, Gunfighter, Quitters Club, and on and on.
Give it a whirl in case you missed it the first time around, just maybe skip the last track...for everybody's sake. Neil Young covers are tough.

*originally posted 05.11.15, reposted 03.27.18


Monday, March 26, 2018

MTN ISL - Maybe Sometimes People

Label: self released
Year: 2018

The good news first: There's a new MTN ISL record out, and it fucking rules. Which wasn't a given (the new record part, the ruling part was assumed), as the band has been laying low in the intervening years since their last release.
The bad news second: This new record currently exists as a cassette tape or a digital download. Unless your Sony Walkman is still handy, or you drive a car manufactured between 1979-1993, I'm not sure a tape is doing you much good. But the download sounds that will do until some philanthropist puts up the cash for a vinyl release (Learning Curve? You listening?)

Maybe Sometimes People is an economical display of thunderous rock damage. Big and burly and ugly and direct. Some Pissed Jeans, some Tad, some Lubricated Goat, some Sunglasses (from which this band descended). Nothing is rushed, nothing is frivolous. It's a straight forward, relatively simple approach, but...since when has that been a bad thing. If you got a gnarly gut punch, then simply apply volume and repeat until desired effect. Easy.

Early contender of Album Of The Year.


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Sperm Donor - Sleight Coincidence

Label: self released
Year: 2018

I'm a straight shooter, so I'm gonna level with you all; had this record not been sent to us by the band themselves, I would have never given it the time of day. That's just how shallow and stubborn I am. The band name is too juvenile to be taken seriously, and the cover art is some hand drawn...something or other, that gives no indication of what lies within (or worse, gives the wrong indication).
But here we are, together, reading about the new Sperm Donor album.
Because I was too quick to discount this based on my own prejudices (where have I heard that before?), we almost missed out on a legit noise rock ripper. I mean, how would I have known that the band who thought it prudent to name three out of the seven songs on this album as Rolling Stones songs, would come correct with a Hammerhead-ish blue collar bluster like this? Why would you expect me to believe on first glance that Sperm Donor have studied the Amphetamine Reptile playbook down to the letter, and deliver on a caveman-bass lurch-n-roll attack?
Stereotypes are a real time saver, you know?! I can only do what I can! Sue me.

Don't let my obduracy rub off on you (don't let my pubic lice rub off on you either)...don't sleep on the unfortunately named Sperm Donor. Trust me...I have great judgement!


Tight Bros From Way Back When - Lend You A Hand

Year: 2001
Label: Kill Rock Stars

I'm on the fence about these guys, as in, I'm not sure if I buy what they're selling. It's full-on arena rawk via glam punk, complete with dueling guitars and Bon Scott styled histrionics. It's well, executed, and these dudes have enough of a pedigree that I want to like this, but there's just something missing. Curiously, they started this band about the same time as a lot of other retro-rock outfits were touring the country, sooooo. You tell me. But like I said, check their bloodline: Karp, The Whip, Big Business, Melvins, Behead The Prophet, Han Shan, Mukilteo Fairies, and Brent's TV.

*Originally posted 08.31.08, re-up'd 03.20.18 (holy shit..I've been "blogging" for over ten years?!)


Melvins - Making Love Demos (Manchild 3)

Label: Bifocal Media
Year: 2007

Seems pretty certain that this record was previously posted on this blog, a previous time...but I looked and don't see it. So look at it now.

Originally recorded as 4-track demos back in 1987, these songs were committed to compact disc under the watchful eye and talented hands of artist/musician Brian Walsby as a companion to his third issue of Manchild zine.

It's raw and feral Melvins. It's the Matt Lukin era of Melvins. It's eight songs, four of which were never released anywhere else. So, that should pretty much be a case closed.


Tuesday, March 13, 2018

The Turin Horse - The Turin Horse

Label: Hell Comes Home
Year: 2018

Three songs, (two originals, one cover) recorded in Turin (saw that coming) by two guys, two years ago in 2016, finally seeing the light of day two months ago in 2018.
Maybe you already heard the aforementioned cover song on the Unsane tribute album, "Scattered, Covered, and Smothered" that came out last year? I did not. But generally I expect more from you, than you should expect from me. Aim low.
So what do these Italian Stallions (I mean, come had to of known I was winding up on that) bring to the table?
Great question, glad you asked.
Were you ever a fan of the band Volt? Cause there's a lot of that band's overdriven manic muscle in Turin Horse. And have you listened to KEN Mode lately? Cause there's some of that band's bludgeoning scatter shot of bombardment. I would also like to inquire if you own any records by Great Falls? Cause that band's gut churning avalanche-rock can be heard in Turin Horse.

Only three songs, but hear me know and believe me later, the final track 'The Light That Failed' is all you need to listen to today (and possibly tomorrow...I don't know if you have any meetings scheduled or not, but I'll let you decide if your conference call is prepared for Turin Horse). Highly, highly recommended.


Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Faking - Keystone Noise Series #1

Year: 2014
Label: Reptilian

Another scathing, overloaded, ass whipping of a 7". Not too far off what The Cloth were doing, but a little bit nastier and a little bit more beholden to some ghosts of Amphetamine Reptile past. Only two songs, but good lord, they pack a lot of vein popping vitriol in a brief seven and half minutes. The proverbial "all killer, no filler" approach to making music.
Essential listening. For real.


The Cloth - Keystone Noise Series #2

Year: 2013
Label: Reptilian

File under: No Mercy
The Cloth deliver these five songs with a sort of reckless, "fuck it" approach that leaves lots of blood and entrails on the battle axe they level their audience with. Messy and haphazard in the sense that these songs couldn't be polished even if they wanted them to be. They are too frantic and/or lumbering to be bothered with perfection. The point is obvious, and it's "get in the car or eat shit". Blown out and exhilarating.


Psychic Teens - Keystone Noise Series #3

Year: 2014
Label: Reptilian

Fuck it, right, let's go ahead and do 'em all.
Psychic Teens pull from the swampy gothic punk stomp that Rikk Agnew was so good at for a minute in Christian Death. It's got Gun Club, and T.S.O.L., and Birthday Party, and some good old fashioned punk power. Not unlike contemporaries Vincas or Wailin' Storms.
One song comes out of the crypt straight for your throat, and the second song slowly returns back to the fog from whence it came.


Fight Amp - Keystone Noise Series #4

Year: 2015
Label: Reptilian

Two quick jams, and unfortunately some of the last quick jams that Fight Amp imparted onto the lucky listeners of the world. Fight Amp was a great band who operated on the burlier end of the noise rock spectrum, combining sludgy aggression with some post hardcore grunge rocking and rolling. At a high volume and with scant few concerns about your well being.
If you're still smarting from Fight Amp's break-up, you should absolutely be getting weird with Plaque Marks, which has two members of the band. And are righteous in their own right.
If you're curious who numbers 1 through 3 are of the Keystone Noise Series, they are, in order, Faking (Philadelphia), The Cloth (also Philadelphia), and Psychic Teens (take a guess).

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