Tuesday, August 30, 2022

1.6 Band - Tongue Family Style

Label: Sunspot
Year: 1992

New York by birth, but D.C. in their minds? 1.6 Band took some of the scrappy ABC No Rio version of their hometown hardcore, but ran it through a deep love affair with the mid-to-late-80's Dischord Records discography. Comes across as a vibrant, punchy take on post hardcore, which, let's be honest with each other, is the kind of take you want taken if it's for the taking.
Kevin Egan from Beyond, and later of The Last Crime sings.
Vin Novara, later of Crown Hate Ruin, Alarms & Controls, and Crayon plays drums.
Lance Jaeger, also of Beyond plays bass.
Mike Yanicelli, briefly of Die 116 plays guitar.
Wharton Tiers who recorded most everybody recorded this.

It's good.

*originally posted 02.12.18, reposted 08.30.22

Sunday, August 28, 2022

World's Fastest Car - Demo Recordings


Label: bootleg
Year: 1998

Lot's of Walter lately...what's going on?
Well, I'll tell you.
At the risk of revealing the proverbial "how sausage is made", or "inside baseball", or what the fuck ever phrase is correct, I'll grant you a sneak peek into the inner workings of this very blog. This one, right here. See, since this (the blog) has gone from a sweaty orgy of it's heyday (relatively speaking...the heyday, not the orgy...that part was happening on the regs) to a one man champagne jam of today (champagne of beers mainly) it can be difficult to stay motivated or productive when dealing with this (again, talking about the blog...the beers are not a problem, hence my quadruple chin). Sometimes I need a kick in the pants to stay on task and keep this ship afloat until our captain (oh captain, my captain) returns from his exile to regain control of the rudder.
Sometimes that inspiration can come from unlikely sources, as it did in this case. A short pep talk and the kernel of an idea has now blossomed into a blog related project (as nerdy as that sounds) of me compiling a list of favorite records to post. Specifically, in this case, I'm going for NYHC 7"s, since it's a particular sweet spot for me. More on that soon (I'm almost done pulling all the shit together).
Point being, I've been balls deep in a NYHC rabbit hole of late, and naturally that involves a whole heaping helping of Walter Schreifels related ephemera. Including his not so NYHC mid-late 90's post-Quicksand project, World's Fastest Car.
After a hasty break-up with Quicksand, Walter called on Arthur from Mind Over Matter/Bad Trip, Alex from Chain Of Strength/Inside Out/Against the Wall and drummer Erik Stams, and went about fleshing out a new batch of songs that broke away from the chugging staccato of Quicksand and went into a more melodic direction. It didn't last very long though, and while in retrospect Walter has said he gives this period and material much more credit than he did at the time, the band never really congealed into a working unit. Plus, a lucrative Quicksand reunion offer was offered...and taken (briefly), so World's Fastest Car came and went.

Two demo recording sessions are culled together here representing the whole of the World's Fastest Car demo repertoire (I think). A good amount of these songs were reanimated into Rival Schools numbers, but some were jettisoned and never heard from again. Which is a shame, as they are great songs. As you would expect. There is a whole album recorded that features some of these songs (different versions), but that was never released. Island and Revelation Records passed on it once the band broke up before it's release date was even set.

*originally posted 08.27.15, reposted 08.28.22

Spore - Giant

Label: Taang!
Year: 1994

Hey, look who's here!
Let's jump back into our old ways, alright? I'll write rambling non sequiturs about music, or my life, or what you could be doing for me, then I'll post a link to a record that I find enjoyable, and then you'll slink through the internets to download that album, and our business will be complete. No hugs.

And, what better way to get back on the horse, than to time travel back to Boston circa that city's high water mark of brutish, lumbering noise rock; 1994. Awash in ugly feedback, and fuzzed out low end stomp, Boston had a confederation of bands that were grinding alternative rock under their bootheels. Slughog, Pinto, Thrall, Black Helicopter, Green Magnet School, La Gritona, Luca Brasi, Bull-Roarer, Glazed Baby, Quintane Americana, Non Compos Mentis, and Tree. Tons of bands lurking in the shadows of that town.  Well, Spore were front and center, plying their trade of volume and mass, deafening rooms one show at a time. And while they certainly fit within the Boston scene from whence they were birthed, Spore had two elements that set them apart from their peers (almost said "Beantown peers"...but changed my mind); they incorporated a hint of Midwestern noise rock into their sound, and they had the bonus of both make and female vocals trading off (it's a noise rock X!). Both are pleasant additions if you asked me...and I imagine you did. Don't you always?

*originally posted 04.15.16, reposted 08.28.22

V/A - Enlightenment 10"

Label: Soledad
Year: 1997

Four bands, each represented by one track. The common thread is written in the insert; "Tried to climb to new heights, but couldn't hold it together".
Thrones go first, and come out of he gate like a molasses covered lightening bolt. I assure you that the speed is correct, even though you will fight me about it for at least the first 30 seconds of this song. It's uglier than anything else you will encounter today (and knowing your mom, that's really saying something...ouch! Zinger!). Recorded by Justin Trosper of Unwound for extra points.
Spaceboy go second, and do a pretty convincing job of out-weirding Thrones. They go for a Breadwinner-after-a-hard-night-of-drinking sound that goes from here to there to back over there to out to the moon and then back under your thumbnail. All the metal in the world combined into all this metal.
Lice go third, and show no interest in making your day brighter or your whites whiter. They go wretched, they go gnarly, and I'm pretty sure they could give a shit if you go with them.
Toadliquor go fourth, and wrap this thing up with a slow motion bang. Psych resin that plods forth from within a collapsing star. Super fucked.

It's all super fucked.

*originally posted 04.18.16, reposted 08.28.22

Flipper - Sex Bomb Baby!

Label: Subterranean
Year: 1987

Issued as a compilation of early singles and compilation tracks originally released in 1981 and 1982, this record served as a tribute to the (then) recently deceased bassist/vocalist Will Shatter, the creative impetus of Flipper.
The potency of these songs has not, and does not appear that they ever will, diminish. Flipper took hardcore and drove it into a wall, over and over. Beyond damaged. The sound they achieved was borderline maniacal, a warped dull drill bit boring into the front of your face.
If you haven't listened in awhile...it's still as fucked as you remember.
Mood music for bouts of dementia.


*originally posted 11.07.17, reposted 08.28.22

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Circle Of Animals - Destroy The Light

Year: 2010
Label: Relapse

Somebody woke up the ghost of Wax Trax!, and put out the best goth-y industrial band of the decade to little fanfare. A very musical industrial album mind you. It's dark and pulsing and buzzing and droning and pounding and brooding. Covers a lot of ground while still sticking in a known wheelhouse.
The band is Bruce Lamont and Sanford Parker, both of whom have notable resumes in the world of heavy and fucked up music. Mr. Lamont is the driving force behind Yakuza, but has also been in Corrections House, Brain Tentacles, and Bloodiest. Mr. Parker was in Minsk, Twilight, Corrections House, Nactmystium, High Confessions, Buried At Sea, and a million others. So together you're dealing with a pretty formidable duo already. But for this project they roped in a different drummer to play on each song, and those drummers are pretty formidable in their own rights. You get:
Jeff Morgan from Rwake/Deadbird
Noah Leger from Hurl/Milemarker/Challenger/Facs
Zack Simmons from Goatwhore
Darren Verni from Unearthly Trance
John Merryman from Cephalic Carnage
Dave Witte from every band ever
Steve Shelley from Sonic Youth
John Herndon from Tortoise/Poster Children/The For Carnation
In addition, they also get a little help from Dallas Thomas of Pelican and for added Industrial cred, Chris Connelly. Legit stuff. Really great record.

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Horsey - Underbelly / Energy

 Label: Smelly
Year: 1993

What are your thoughts on songs that sound like a slow motion car crash rolling down the side of a mountain? The percussive thuds of the vehicle descending out of control. The grating clamor of the metal being ripped from the frame. The inhuman yowl of the passengers unable to accept their fate. Cause that's what side A of this two song 7" reminds me of. The flip side has a sort of skittish groove of an unbalanced Faith No More song. Uneasy but ultimately settling into its pace as it searches for survivors. 
This San Francisco band had a quick 3-4 year run, but it was a good one. They made a lot of noise in a lot of ways, and for that, we applaud them. Or, at least I do. I suppose I shouldn't speak on your behalf. Sorry.

Monday, August 22, 2022

Totimoshi - Monoli

Label: This Dark Reign
Year: 2003

The easy thing to say with Totimoshi is; "are you having a hard time waiting between Melvins records?". But, that cheapens their take on fractured sludge rock, which quite frankly, gives the ole Melvins a run for their money. Cause, for one, every so often the Melvins kinda crawl up their own asses and try to be clever or something, which Totimoshi don't do. And secondly, Totimoshi come to the same satisfying conclusions as the best Melvins songs, but they do so with dashes of Loudspeaker's gutter grit, some Tijuana stink weed slink, and The Cramps' rave up stomp, which give it a unique flavor. There is adventure and expansiveness in these songs, couched in the warm overdriven fuzz of a blaring full stack.
So, really, we should dispense with all the Melvins comparisons, and just let Totimoshi stand on their own two feet (six feet actually, as they are a trio) as a the behemoth they are. Or were, as the case may be.

*originally posted 01.17.17, reposted 08.22.22

Vent - Long Lost Human


Label: Hydra Head
Year: 1995

Hydra Head numero uno. The beginning of a pretty miraculous run right?
I fell hard for Aaron Turner's taste in burly noise-core, and this record started his label off with a bang. It's a frazzled mess of chugging thuds and borax throated bellows that claws its way out from under a damaged hardcore cave in to lay waste to all in its path. Destructo rock.
The band was from Wichita, and had a demo, two songs that came out on a 7" called Ephemeral (which may or may not have actually been from their demo), and these two songs. That was it. They broke up and three fourths of them reformed as Boxer Rebellion, who also released a record on Hydra Head.
Enjoy. I do.

*originally posted 05.16.16, reposted 08.22.22

Sunday, August 21, 2022

Walt Mink / Gneissmaker - Croton-Harmon Local


Label: Skene!
Year: 1990

Two bands, each with two songs, from the two Twin Cities (Walt Mink from Minneapolis, and Gneissmaker from St. Paul). Two of a kind. These are the first two Walt Mink songs put to tape, and serve as a pretty apt introduction to the band's scruffy power pop (punk?), that would eventually get them a major label deal and then the cliched descent into obscurity. Which stinks, cause they were a good band. Nothing revolutionary, but very catchy and punchy songs that had them opening for bands like Lemonheads and Buffalo Tom and the like. Gneissmaker are a nastier, more metallic group of...gentlemen? They bring a ramshackle power trio full of ideas to a relatively stripped down (at least production-wise) version of grungy metal. Not unlike some of the Seattle bands of the same era, but not those really big Seattle bands of the same era. More of a Coffin Break or Skin Yard sort of deal, but then add in some of Killing Joke's DNA, and some of their hometown peers Halo Of Flies. It's cool. It's "off," but in a way that you can't fake.  
Apologies that there is surface noise for the first two seconds or so of the first track. It's an old record and I guess a slightly dirty one. 

Friday, August 19, 2022

Pipe - Ashtray

 Label: Merge
Year: 1993

While Chapel Hill circa 1993 was knee deep in cultivating (by accident?) a regional dialect of fractured indie rock that was, if we are being honest, pretty much the high water mark of college indie rock for the decade, there were other bands lurking around the area who took a different tact. Bands like Pipe, who did share many bills with your Archers Of Loaf and Superchunk (the drummer of Pipe was in Superchunk) and Polvo and Small (the guitarist and drummer of Pipe were in Small) and all of those. Pipe took a very direct and aggressive version of early punk and ratcheted it up a notch with a healthy dose of volume and a leering vision of the past, present, and future. What they managed was an invigorating and completely infectious attack that masked a catchy hook under a growling riff and an agitated vocalist. It was mean, but you were tapping your feet...and dodging spit.
We've posted Pipe before, and we will post them again, as I find them to be one of the best unsung treasures of 1990's North Carolina music, so strap in. This 7" today is a two song affair, one original, one cover, all perfect. It's the simple things...like me, that make life worth living, isn't it?

Monday, August 15, 2022

Janitor Joe - Stinker

Label: Amphetamine Reptile
Year: 1993

Are Janitor Joe "unsung heroes of noise rock?" Or, is that a title that I just made up?
Either way, there are bands that to my ears are the epitome of noise rock, as a musical genre (and what else would it be besides a musical genre?), and Janitor Joe is one of them. Everything about their sound is checking off boxes on the noise rock application. You want this band playing loud music in your establishment! 
And even though they were on the premiere record label of the genre during a particularly fruitful era of the genre, you don't hear people getting all bent out of shape about Janitor Joe. Why not? What did they ever do to you besides rock you very very hard? They were top quality, grade-a shit. These two songs will attest to that. Scouts honor.

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