Thursday, 8 December 2011

Book Yer Ane Fest V @ Kage/Dexters, Dundee

Friday December 2nd - Sunday December 4th @ Kage/Dexters, Dundee
An Absolute gem of a weekend this turned out to be. The folks at Make-That-A-Take Records really went all out on this one. All a worthy cause as the proceeds from the event went to the charity Safe-Tay, give them a nosey here. Anyway. It turned out to be a messy weekend and I was struck down by some illness (no denial of in relation to alcohol) mid way through the weekend. So while I got a got review from Friday. I left Saturday to Bry Parasite from Bile Yer Heid Fanzine. I'll post the link once it's been posted. I then picked a selection of bands I thought stood out on the Sunday that I was able to catch. If you want professional, go buy the fuckin NME, If you want honest, come here.

Friday @ Kage Nightclub
The last ever show (4th time only) from Joey Terrifying and I'm still pretty disappointed this lot a splitting, although I am hoping for several one offs over the next few years before finally reforming. With vocalist Deeker drenched in an impeccably tight testicle exposing orange morph suit, it wasn't very hard to focus on the musical element. A good strong set from the boys, and while I understand the reasons for the placement as opening act, I'd have loved to see them higher up the bill for a good send off. I recommend getting a hold of their stuff, we previously reviewed all their releases, which you can check out here, which includes a link to their bandcamp to download it all. 7.5/10
The Day I Snapped threw us completely off balance and into the world what I could describe as Emo n Roll. Never heard that one before. Infused with some good pop punk tunes, but not an awful lot of energy from the band and a bit too slow in my opinion. Although the did do pretty well musically and seemed pretty tight knit. 6/10
Maxwells Dead had a top night, even with guitarist Russel a bit pissed he still seemed to catch every note perfectly. The whole band put on a good show and their pop punk rock style with bollocks prevailed through and got the crowd bouncing back to life. Very good set from the boys. 8/10
To be honest, as always, I wasn't impressed with that much with Mickey Erg! To start with all I could hear was Joel Madden with a guitar in his hands. A Bit too whiney and with it being just himself on an electric guitar, it sounded a bit more like he was jamming in someones living room after a few spliffs more than anything else. There were definitely folk into him, though it just didn't work for me. 4/10
The Upstarts. This was what I was holding my breath for. One of my favourite bands from Aberdeen and the scene hasn't quiet been the same without them. Missed by all, Crusties, Skankers and Street Punx alike. Their set seemed shorter than it should have been. A few mistakes here and there but nothing crazy and while their reunion would have been met with a cascade of bodies going crazy in Aberdeen, In Dundee it seemed restricted to 4 or 5 folk and few moody cunts down the front complaining they're getting bumped into at a punk gig. Canna please everyone. 8.5/10
The Slow Death for me were pretty poor. Very generic sounding rock with hints of pop punk and I wasn't impressed with any of their set, except.... the last song. I don't know if it was their own or a cover or what the craic is there, but the last song was brilliant and if the rest of their set had the same pace, desire and cinder block to the skull effect as that one, I'd be all over it. 4/10
The Arteries finished off the evening for us and I was all about the face paced energy these boys showed. Great sections of hardcore from this band as well. Couldn't help draw comparisons with Billy Talent in certain vocal situations, but that's not that much of a bad thing. Good Effort. 7.5/10

Selection from Sunday @ Dexters, Dundee
15 Minutes - I'd been looking forward to seeing these guys for years and by christ, from this lads chat between songs, he's had a tough shift and kudos to him for the strength he shows. If you haven't already heard the acoustic melodies (one man playing, the other just singing), then have a look. They don't play very often either, which is why it's taken me so bloody long to seem them but If you get the chance. Take it! 8/10
Billy Liar - I really don't why I bother to continue reviewing this cunt, it's always a top show, but on the night it was the crowd that was lacking to make it special, not the man in particular himself, who kept breaking guitar strings at an alarming rate. As always, if you're near, get it done and go see the loon. 8/10
ONSIND - Two lads from Durham here who's main lyric points seem to be Feminism and Animal Rights. The gathered a close crowd of female followers down the front, with quite a few guys coming in there as well. Their music was pretty good and message good hearted, but they seemed to do a lot of complaining about men, rather than encourage women to do more. Surly when it comes to sexism, lowering one sexes expectations (no matter whether it's female or male), to compensate the other isn't how it should work, Surly bringing each other up to same levels on a united front is much better? They were however quite impressive to say the least and very well worth going to see. 8/10
Chris T-T - This guy was something very different. The man from Brighton comes to us as the tour support for Franz Nicolay. Although it seems he didn't really stand out much on stage he did something, mid-set, I've never seen anyone do before. I never seen anything like it. He put down his guitar, got off the stage and started singing a song. It was a slow and calmly sung ballad. He did it with no microphone and he gradually just circled round the room at Dexters, before heading back onto the stage. Such intensity, that you feared to breath. Something incredibly surreal. 7/10
Franz Nicolay - With contributions on recordings to bands such as Against Me and Leftover Crack, this man gets around and is a very skilled musician, but this point in the night, I was happy to take a back seat and engross myself in his product and I enjoyed myself thoroughly. Picking up in different variations an accordion, banjo and an acoustic guitar is was nice way to end the weekend and relax after a long 3 days. 8.5/10

On this particular day, looking back on it, I get the impression that this was obviously the day for everyone to chill out after a long weekend, especially considering the majority of the acts were acoustic, but even then, being told to be quiet while a musician is playing through an amp is ridiculous. And as a whole from the weekend it seemed, and while I'm aware that every scene is different, that Dundee is very wound up. It seemed a lot of being weren't prepared to cut loose. Don't get me wrong, there's a big scene, lots of people who make the effort, but also a bit of shite to it. My friendliest chat, from folk I didn't already know, came from the bouncers at Kage.

Overall, again, I want to say a massive thank you to Make That A Take Records for the whole weekend and big props to Deeker for booking it all. Top marks to the Dundee and surrounding scenes for your effort in getting yourselves there. Top praise to all the bands, whether I liked you or not, for your efforts this weekend. Whether I'm into you guys or not is irrelevant if you're prepared to make the effort and do the show so well done to yourselves.

Friday, 2 December 2011

The Defects - Revelator EP CD/DVD (2011)

The Defects - Revelator EP CD/DVD (2011) [DIY]

Opening track and EP title "Revelator" kick us off and it's a song you can get excited about. This is 77 meets street. The echoing ring of the guitar and the build ups are great. The harrowing voice throwing out a chorus, brilliant backing vocals pieces and the drumming is good and adventurously successful in some areas and solid throughout. The Reggae piece towards the end in particular shows this band can diversify whether the fuckin want to or not. And jesus christ that's only track one. "Guilty Conscience" maintains the same pieces as before. Solid riffs, brilliant backing vocal sections and solid drumming. "Metal Walls" is still a good song, with an impressive solo in there as well and it's a good jump around but not better than the last two songs. Then comes track 4, I was so, so, so dreading listening to this. I had listening to dub mixes of songs. It ruins them. But.... not this one. It's "Revelator Dub" and while the song originally has a wee section of reggae in it, this one is all over reggae and it sounds beautiful. With tormented echos which stretch on in the vocals and the guitar before hitting incredibly hard vocally with the chorus to bring you to attention and appreciate it. Like I said, I usually fucking despise these tracks thrown onto the end of EPs. In my opinion it's laziness on the bands part, but this one has been done very well and pretty good considering their drummer Glen did it and it's his first bash at it. Impressive EP 9/10

Bet they didn't think I'd review this too eh.... haha. To start with I'm thinking this video is shite! It's put together pretty crap, but a sneaking suspicion that that couldn't be the case, cause no one would do something this bad on disk, was confirmed when the next track, the live one, came on and the video was equally as fucked up. Well you know what, Windows Media Player can get tae fuck. So for now, I'll leave it at that until I can get a dvd player to watch the DVD.

Monday, 28 November 2011

Knives Out - Here Again (2011)

Knives Out - Here Again (2011) [Next Punk Records]
I was quite happy last week because I received a copy of the album Here Again, by Swiss punk n rollers Knives Out. And it's a pretty good listen. The albums opening track "I'm Here" screams rock n roll right from the start and the band keep the level up. The song "Walking Away" was particularly good. It's melody is a nice little head bopper and it's a nice number. The problem I had was this album was that nothing really seemed to stand out. The vocals were pretty good, but the musicians came accross as very pub standard rock n roll and to be honest I felt like they're capable of better. The riffs aren't spectacular, they're not bad, they're just not anything too special or important here. It comes accross as a bit repetitive. "Start Again" and "Foe" are not bad songs in their own right, but like I said, nothing stands out too much. It's obvious they've put quite a bit of effort into their album launch and the recording of it etc, but it just hasn't caught my attention as much as i hoped it would of. I the end it's a disappointing 6/10.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

The Defects @ The Wellesley Inn, Methil

Saturday November 26th 2011 @ The Wellesley Inn, Methil
What. A. Fuckin. Night. Great times and not one i'll forget in a hurry.... well let's hope not, cause here's the review! This was my first time at a gig in Fife that wasn't Dunfermline and I didn't know what to expect. I figured we'd be a in a function room sorta thing at a local pub and I was right, but it was pretty damn good if I'm honest. The layout of the place was spot on and everything about the place was great. Loved it. I'm not going to lie, when I first walked in I was confronted by a skinhead in a West Ham United tracksuit screaming at the bar (as in behind the bar) cause no one was there to serve us, all the while having the word "FIFE" tattooed accross his knuckles. Ye jump to conclusions, but he was a good lad.

Razorblade Smile
So starting off we've got Razorblade Smile from Glasgowville. Now I'm convinced I've seen them before somewhere, but not entirely sure. To be honest, they were a bit off for me. I thought the vocalist was very good, her voice suited the music very well, she just seem struggled a bit to push the energy onto the crowd, but for fuck sake, what opening band does. It's too early to get anyone in the mood, it's an impossible task. Musically however they didn't seem to gel. Musicians that is, not what the were playing. It reflected a bit too much like a jam session, but still, I thought they were nae bad like! 6/10

Prairie Dugz
Then! Oh Then Oh Then! I got me a treat. Prairie Dugz. Fuckin' smashin. Loved it. What I got from their performance was this. I like UK Subs, you like the subs, we all like the subs. But what If we were to give the subs tons of speed. Then make them more powerful. We're talking about the 6 million dollar band here, we can rebuild them and make them stronger and the result is in Ayrshire. And even saying that I'm taking away from them their own style, cause by fuck do they make their own. If you can see this band live, go and bloody see them, they are brilliant. 9/10
This next band I had the distinct pleasure of having a few brews with up the road afterwards, but you know me, no special treatment. Hi-Fi Spitfires played a particularly good set, but to be honest I think the only thing stopping me from getting more into them was how high the previous band had placed the bar. But take nothing away, a solid set, the crowd loved it, tight as hell, if anything wasn't on form for this band, to be honest it was probably me, So i'll definitely be seeing them again if I get the chance. 7.5/10

Hi-Fi Spitfire
Now I would have been happy with what I'd already been offered, but we're forgetting one thing here, we've The Defects all the way from Belfast Rock City this evening and it's their turn for a bash on the speakers. These boys come out guns blazing and just tune after tune is something that's very easy to fall head over heels for. They're energy was unquestionable, stage presence impeccable and playing to perfection. I'd heard a lot of hype kicking about for this one and I was not left disappointed, not in the slightest. 9.5/10

Overall the gig gets a 9/10 from me. Half an inch short of spectacular. I would also like to extend my hand to the Fife Scene. You lot showed up in your numbers and supported your scene. Well done, keep it up. It was was a bastard of a night to be outside, but for those of you who braved it, good on ye. Every person I spoke to at the gig were absolutely top people and a great time was had by all. Thanks also to the bands for having faith in a dodger that comes up asking for a CD to review for a fanzine you've probably not heard of.... yet! It's much appreciated and I will hopefully have all the CDs reviewed by the end of the week. And finally the best for last, for feeding me, picking me up and housing me for the evening a big thank you to Pauline and Jim Brown, I had an awesome time, thank you.

Kvelertak @ o2 abc, Glasgow

Thursday November 24th 2011 @ o2 abc, Glasgow
Yer stereotypical friendly
welcome to Glasgow
On a completly baltic Thursday night in Scotland, probably the worst of the winter so far, we drove down from Aberdeen to Glasgow. When we got to Glasgow we fought the wind and rain, luckily only for a few hundred yards, but it was all gonna be worth it cause tonight, Kvelertak are in toon, and I'm going to see them for the first time. While not a punk show per say, its still got heavy elements of it, so well worth a wee mention, but right off the bat it's fucked up. The aforementioned weather means we miss the opening band Wolves like Us and just catch the last few songs of The Secret. However I will say from the last few songs that I did catch of them, I wasn't that into it. Came accross as a bit generic metalcore stuff, wasn't a fan, but they certainly had a few folk into them. Now when Toxic Holocaust came on I was expecting big things. I was quite impressed with the first few songs, but by about the 4th song they just sounded like Slayer. Good. But not much originality in there at all. Infact said song, I could have sworn was a mix between Angel of Death and Raining Blood. Particular highlight was the song titles, which were mostly just very very very very very metal. "667, Greater than Evil" , that sorta thing. Well worth a chuckle. But however, these guys got the place bouncing and albeit a timid crowd in Glasgow still one of excitement for a Thursday and the band gave it everything they had.

Kvelertak then came on and by god they fuckin blew me away. You're talking 3 guitarists, bassist, drummer and vocalist and these boys are tighter than an Aberdonian at a charity gig. Keep in mind this band played for an hour with only one album released and every song they played was like hearing hit after hit after hit. They grasp you in like a child needing comfort and all of sudden everything isn't just ok, it's fuckin marvelous. The sound of the black metal meets punk rock with a Guns 'n' Roses swagger. If you haven't heard of this band, get the listened to.

It'd be cheap of me to judge the entire gig based on 2 1/3 of a the bands, so I'll just mark up Kvelertak and give them a very impressive 9/10

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Ziplock - Nothing to Prove (2011)

Ziplock - Nothing to Prove (2011) [Horn & Hoof Records]
The Norwich based punk's EP Nothing to Prove blasts off with opening track "One Step Behind" and while in areas it sounds a little rush recorded with some mis-timings, it's full of contagious energy and not to be sniffed at. "Change Your Routine" is a chainsaw of street punk and while it's a really short burst of energy it's pretty good. "Not Cost Effective" and "Mental Block" are also examples of the simplistic, but powerful riffs, but what I feel completely commands this EP is the vocals which is very self-evident in the latter. "Meltdown" without a doubt is their pub anthem. All in all it's a not bad wee number, however a bit too similar musically, which spoils it a bit. Apart from needing a bit more diversity, it's pretty good. 7/10

The Brothel Corpse Trio + Bittersuite @ The Moorings, Aberdeen

Friday November 18th @ The Moorings, Aberdeen
The gig opened up the traditional Moorings Friday night 2 band bill and did a pretty good job. While the Moorings, or in particular the Fudge Promotions lads, have a thing for never putting two punk bands on the same bill it would seem, they always have a good bands on. It's trying to please everyone in the pub who would be there regardless if anyone was playing. So to start off we've got Bittersuite. I was quite impressed with the guys, they weren't half bad. It was sort of post Guns N Roses with Alice in Chains vocals. While the imitation Guns n Roses stuff is done quite often, not to mention quite badly as well, I was surprised when these guys did a not bad job. I thought they were trying to make it their own, but the GNR cover at the end, albeit an encore, shattered that haha.

Brothel Corpse Trio's Squidy in action on the Double Bass

Phil & The Sideburns

Brothel Corpse Trio hit the stage next. I've never really been a fan of this band. It started very zombie pish with hints of pyschobilly when they first started up, but I'd been told their new stuff was harder and faster and to be honest throughout the performance I quite enjoyed them. While not quite the Elvis meets GBH I was told to expect, it was still a tightly played and well orchestrated set. And Squidy was right when he said he cut out all the clicking on the Double Bass. 7/10

Jono's not very photogenic anyway....

Friday, 18 November 2011

Gum Bleed Interview (Nov 2011 - Post European Tour)

So another tour of Europe man! This time 2 weeks across Germany, Denmark and Czech. How did everything go this time round?
it was 2 weeks and 4 days, everything was going well, but we are very tired after the tour, cos we have shows every night.

I heard you had a great time in Denmark especially?
for punk rock show, i prefer germany. but for sightseeing or meeting some beautiful girls, i suggest denmark :) you should know it.
and i have to say, copenhagen is more than crazy.
as i said denmark is great, but germany still has the stronggest punk scene, firmly punk rockers and leftwing movements.
now i'm more looking forward to uk scene...

Any mad stories from the tour or are you guys generally good boys on the road?
ugh... we met some white pride hooligans in train station of duisburg and some skinheads on street of copenhagen. they wanna fight with us. but we didn't do that, they are too simple, stupid and.. kind of big. so the best way is to be safety and do not kick their ass or punch them on face.
it was sad to see the real rightwings in europe, cos we've heard that rightwings, white power shits are growing in europe.

You've been playing off of the "No War, But Class War" EP. It seems alot softer than what I expected?
yes. softer? oh maybe your right... we are more and more interested in 77 punk rock, not that hardcore as before. but we will still play some hardcore/street punk songs.
gum bleed wanna back to the root of punk rock, also plus the spirit of street punk.

Any plans for a new full length album and if so what you got in mind for it?
yes! a plan for the full length new album, we may start in december 2011 and release it next year. i think it'll be a totally gum bleed style album, then less ppl will say we are no.2 casualties or chinese casualties etc.
12-13 songs in project alreday.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Northern Aggression - Project Bonehead Volume 2 (2011)

Northern Aggression - Project Bonehead Volume 2 (2011) [Insurgence Records]

The Knockarounds - Falling Down: Hardcore Skinhead anthem right from the get go with this lot. Lyrically a tribute to the victims of pain endured through life and it some parts the guitar has an excellent selection of get up and go about it. Good Track.

Fighting Chance - Somethin's Gotta be Done: Almost Japanese sounding intro that plays into a war cry of battle drums, but instead of the heavy handed go for it street punk style I was expecting we get something quite different. For this compilation I have the benefit of the lyrics and lyrically it tells the tale of  racist oppression in several forms accross several locations. Another good track.

The Class Assassins - Outside Looking In: Old School sound from The Class Assassins. Musically it's Lates 70s Belfast sounding all over. Lyrically as well. Another good track here.

Union Made - Left to Right: With an intro that would have you convinced your about to be aurually molested by nu-metal, it fast changes with the verse riffs that still have a heavy edge of fast metal, but a slight grind sound to it. Not the best track on the comp, but still not too bad, bit too metal for me.

Wisdom in Chain - Nazi Headstomp: AUS ROTTTTTTTEN! Sorry guys. I love the sound though, but thats who instantly comes to mind throughout this song, but they JUST make it their own. And I'd love to sing that chrous at a gig. Fast as hell and demands you fuck shit up. Brilliant Track.

Death in Custody - Carbomb: By the time we've got to the chorus you can tell this song ain't lasting anything more than 2 minutes, and why the fuck should it. It's awesome drunk bounce around verse and chorus riff is perfect for the pit.

The Blackout Brigade - Pushed too Far: Theres something about this track, the intro and verse a very good. As is the build up to the chorus, but having the lyrics in front of me I would have went a bit different with the riff for the chorus when it comes, but they still do a good job. Good Track.

Nuts & Bolts - It's Up to You: Vocally everything seems a bit out of place in the song, there doesn't seem to be a proper slot for the lyrics to come in and it ruins it for me. Musically it's not that bad.

The Press - Just Another Warning: At the start of this song I'm convinced they're about to run away with Stiff Little Finger's Alternative Ulster, but they don't even do that, they seem to miss a few riffs to even rip that off properly. Vocally it's all to slow and rather monotone. Not a Fan.

Class War Kids - Common Threads: Here comes the sound from the street. Lyrically and musically it's brilliant. Love it. Will follow up more on this band because this is what keeps me going! Top Song, best on the compilation.

The Fallout - Riot Boys: Lyrically it's a not bad song and musically it's got a very catchy, bouncy riff to it and it's pretty damn good. Vocally it's not bad either, it just seems a bit one directional, but it's still pretty good. Great Track.

The Oppressed - I Don't Wanna: No doubt leg-ends in their own right, these boys show why. It's old school Oi! Boots marchin on the streets, chanting it's message loud and proud. Another Great track and it's about time I got my hands on some more Oppressed tunes.

Stage Bottles - All You need is Hate: Well this is a fast change of pace. Shit! how to describe this 77 chant along, with Oi verses with ska punk bridges. But that sound of old 80s brass, which is a nice rapid pace as well. This song is pretty damn good! Another band i'll follow up on here!

Hold A Grudge - Time's Up: A Madman vocalist combined with street punk riffs and chant along pieces before breaking into a very nicely done chrous riff. This song then finishs off with an anthem broadcast chanting along to the words... "Time's Up"

Fate 2 Hate - Trust: Hard mixture of street punk and Oi in a fully charged orchestra of brutality. A great song to listen to and bounce around to as well, well worth a listen or twelve.

Mic Crenshaw - Follow Your Instincts: Right how many times does this happen that a compilation will get thrown together and someone will through on a track, right at the end, that makes no sense being there. Lyrically yes, but no part of this musically should be on this album. I'm following My instincts and switching off. If it was done as poetry of some sorts it could be pulled off, but this gangster rap shit, doesn't work.

Overall: It's a pretty good compilation. A few bands I'll be following up on, one or two I'll quickly forget and the rest is pretty good as well. I'd definatly say you should be giving it a listen. The compilation was put together to combat an ongoing Nazi propaganda situation in the north-east of the US, where the bonehead braindeads have been handing out white power music. 7/10


Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Global Unity Musik II - Various Arists (2011)

Global Unity Musik II - Various Artists (2011) [Riot Ska Records]
Riot Ska Records continues it's dedication to the DIY punk underground by creating a compilation of bands from around the world with the aim of spreading their music to further beyond the globe. So here's what Dead Cities Fanzine thinks of it, and I'm quite excited about this, cause this Riot Ska records lad, he's got good taste!

Artist - Track Title - Track Time
1.Atrocity Solution - Dark Days 04:20
Grab you boots and let's go! This sounds like it should be the latest release from Star Fucking Hipsters and has just as much quality to it. With excellent, what sounds like dual vocals, but could be how it's recorded, but it's done with some style! The guitar riffs are excellent throughout. Would love to hear more from these guys.

2.Foolish - Simple Life (ft. Union Jack) 02:37
Pick it Up! Skank fest on our hands here with Foolish, but a twist that edges between ska and full on punk rock with the guitar in the verse, then the chorus blasts your ear drums into submission. Excellent Track. It really mixes it up with different speeds and riffs throughout.

3.Opposition Rising - FTW 02:14
Glad to know that these guys treat FTW as Fuck the World, unlike the bullshit of For the Win. Pet peeve like. This song is fuckin hardcore. This is exactly how punk music should sound. A musical threat and is literally a Fuck You to the world. Excellent with some metal undertones in there as well.

4.1000 Drunken Nights - Stagnant 03:50
All old school ska vibe with some brilliant wee brass sections and the guitar during the verses, only thing not having that vibe of back in the day is the vocals, and that's a good thing. But from that... old school meets new school like a kick in the balls when we hit the chorus and it really gets going. Great track.

5.Beng Beng Cocktail - As We Sew, So We Reap 03:12
The intro to this song has an eerie edge to it with the acoustic guitar and varying instruments in the background. The song gets going and one of the vocalists sounds like he's whispering with a really bad cough. Overall it's a good track, but I'd love to here it done with an electric guitar rather than acoustic, perhaps its not as good sounding that way as I hope it is, but maybe it is.

6.CBiHCITY - Grey Days 01:02
Fast as hell hardcore for fans of Minor Threat. These boys don't seem to do anything slow and why the fuck should they!?! Only problem is it's over before it's time

7.Banditos - Loan Riders 03:33
I've already reviewed this song on the RiotSka Records Sampler and it's a brilliant song, but I'm one of these guys that thinks once you've gave a track to that compilation, you can't use it for another one, that's just how I'd run my music however and like I said before, It's an excellent acoustic track with great melodies.

8.Prophet Margin - The Church Reserve 03:45
An almost reggae vibe from this band at the start before hitting it more ska territory. Dual vocal combo that works very well. Musically it's pretty good until it hits the chorus, it sounds a bit unorganized, but like it's missing a bar, but still sounds pretty good!

9.E.A.T.E.R. - Point Of No Return 02:08
Someone in here is going to slow and I can't pick out who, it may be all of them but at different sections. But it's still a pretty good song, but I don't feel like its the bands strongest, they sound like they've more to offer.

10.Global Parasite - Ad Nauseum 03:19
Get yer Organs oot! Slowed down and dragged out intro before an infectious song loving virus takes grip of the song. Heavy handed fast as fuck riffs throughout and a vocalist that wants your attention and he wants it fuckin now!

11.From The Cradle To The Rave - Greed 02:00
The first wee bit of this sounds like "Going to Ibiza" by the Vengaboys, but that lasts all of 3 seconds thank fuck, before launching into the tirade that is the punk rock equivalent of Pendulum and in my opinion, if you're into that sorta thing, better than them. Its incredibly difficult to get me into techno anthems so to speak, but this band do it with ease. Get them listened to now!

12.Spanner - Autonomous Spaces 03:41
Vocally this guy doesn't sound angry enough about what he's talking about, maybe he's a calm lad haha. It does sound like he's talking rather than singing, but when the chorus hits it's very evident he has the talent to do it. Slow riff for the verse and echoing brass section, but apart from that I don't imagine them to be very wild live if this song is anything to go by.

13.The Dubtones - Propaganduh! 03:21
A nice song with excellent lyrics that anyone with a brain can relate too. Not too slow, but not too fast either with a nice melodic chorus, wooooooo-oooo Propanganduh!!!

14.The Poseurs - What Will You Do Then 02:34
Holy shit, If Brody Dalle has a voice like a gravel truck, then this cunt ate the fuckin gravel truck! A harmonious anthem during the chorus, a fast as hell bridge and then a ska verse riff, these guys want to bring it ALL together and they do it very well. Someone get this lad some cough medicine!

15.Manitoba Lights - Pharmacopia (Drug The Children) 02:21
I think the vocalist from this band has caught the same cough as the guy before this. It's a nice combination of brass and ska riffs on the guitar and the lone trumpet in the foreground of the chorus sounds a bit daunting. All in all another good track!

16.Eskera - Xicano Ska 01:56
Creepy screeching guitar and a hardcore ska vibe from these guys before the hard hitting chorus that screams attitude. It's an interesting song with the band not limiting themselves to anything in the slightest, vocally however it could be better, but still a good track none the less.

17.Ghetto Blaster - Whatchu Gunna Do 02:06
Another one reviewed in the Riot Ska Records Sampler and in fact their EP has been reviewed on here as well. It's a great track infusing rap in the verse and hardcore in the chorus. Good Track and a good band, give me a listen and read the review of their EP here.

18.Smiler - All Failed 01:37
With vocals like an army drill Sergeant and a guitar riff that sounds like war its a nice blast. The build up in the middle sounds like the build up from the Power Rangers theme song though and the drums don't seem very well organized at all.

19.Dead Subverts - In The Name Of Art 02:10
Vocally out of time I felt in the verse, the chorus is simple but a definite crowd pleaser and the song screams raw power. A good listen and I feel these band have alot more to offer so I'd like to hear more!

20.Divine Spark - Call Of The Wild 04:12
Yet ANOTHER off of the Riot Ska Records Sampler is the slow doomy headbanger that is Call of the Wild. Another great band from the Riot Ska family. When the song hits its doomy hardcore at it's finest and another song of pure raw power once it gets going with the feeling of drudgery at the beginning.

21.Braindead - It Won't Be Drawn 02:15
Another ska riff with a twist, just that wee squeeze of lime that affects the taste in a good way, for me anyway. It's the lime the Corona needs, the chorus riffs let them down a bit, but the the bridge is strong.

22.The Murder Chord - Whiskey & Water 01:51
This song starts off with a mellow car chase feel to it, lyrically it's not bad as a party anthem, but the the piano doesn't sound very well done on this track and overall the track is missing that burst of energy. It's like a 2 minute build up to nothing almost.

23.Broken Nose - That Girl 02:45
Multiple, albeit brief, brass section here with dual-sex-vocals. It's ok and half way through I expect it to go harder into it, but it doesn't. The vocals from these two are brilliant, but the band, like the previous, is missing that prolonged burst of energy. Towards the end we get an almost marching style music before going out.

24.The Decline! - Let Me Out 03:35
An almost country vibe mixed with punk n roll with bits of Bad Religion thrown in there, a popular band to copycat it would seem these days haha. No doubt however they make this their own, but live it wouldn't be more me, but I can see it being a good show for most folks.

Overall: In the end this is an excellent compilation, like I said, the lad has good taste. Theres a few tracks that let the side down a bit, plus the songs already on the Riot Ska Sampler, again what I was saying about using the same song on different compilations. But in general it's all very well put together and sounds brilliant so you should definitely be getting a hold of this. All in all... 9/10.


Tuesday, 1 November 2011

The Rebel Spell - It's a Beautiful Future (2011)

The Rebel Spell - It's a Beautiful Future (2011) [Rebel Time Records]
Right from the get go an explosion of punk rock hits your ears. Bad Religion styled vocals and the go for it attitude of the instruments combined with a melodic overtone are a perfect combination and this band pull it off with brilliance. The opening, and title, track screams at you to pay attention. "It Can't Be Just Me" does the same thing however with a powerful drum and bass pounding during the verse it screams 'anthem motherfuckers!!' and it has a lovely piano piece towards the end as well. "All We Want" starts off sounding like a track off an Exploited album, but calms into their own sense of fury for the verse before trailing back to the riff in the chorus. There are massive hints of Against Me! in this band as well, but in my opinion they pull it off better. The song "Uncontrollable" is a particular delight from this 12 track album. Starts off with an almost Russian vibe to it that speaks up with great results before hitting the verse, but the chorus... fucking amazing. The melody of it, the riffs, the beats, utter fucking perfection. Another gem is "Tragedy" with it's lyrics which are truly inspiring to those of us who've come out the other side of self destruction mode. "Murderers" is also a good number and one of the stand outs on the record. "The World Turned Upside Down" while lyrically good, goes on for too long on the acoustic clean section before the rest of the band show up and it needed it earlier, it was great, but needed it earlier! But fuck it, it's an amazing album and I'm not going to dock points for being 40 seconds late on the last track. 10/10

At time of posting, this download is available for free:

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Jakal - Kick the Debris (2010)

Jakal - Kick the Debris (2010) [DIY]
This 5 track EP from the 5 piece London based Reggae bunch starts off with the suttle and soothing "All over London Town". "Kingdom" starts off just as suttle, but hits the chorus and bring us up a level. Not being the biggest fan of Reggae, I do love it's nourishing nature and sense of roots but I don't own an awful lot, it's difficult for me to give a good representation, but having just the slightest injection of punk rock thrown into gives it a new edge on life. "Panopticon" starts off completely different and throughout has a distinct harder feel to it. Rough Reggae if you will, which sounds like it would come across brilliant live, especially in a small crowded DIY venue. The dash to the finish is good as well. We're thrown back into a state of relaxation by "Sundown Roots". I'm trying to bop my head in delight, but my head is used to going faster and I'm miles out of time! This song is more ska than anything else and it's another good tune. At the start of the next song "Border" I can hear the spirit of the Specials creeping through them and then the walk away from it and make it their own. Overall this EP is a great example of British Reggae, but again not being the biggest fan I'm not falling head over heels for it, but for Reggae fans, more than well worth a listen. 7.5/10

Anti-Venom - As Soon as There is Justice (2010)

Anti-Venom - As Soon as There is Justice (2010) [Riot Ska Records]
Right from the get go this band want you attention and your gonna give em it! The echoing vocals and the dynamic riffs between ska (in some sections), street punk and melodic punk rock with an oozing sense of East Coast, that would be true, if this lot we're the hottest punk band I've heard out of Mexico. The band bring something to the table that some other bands just don't have, they're unique, they have their own personal edge and most importantly it's not repetitive and at 16 tracks plus a cover, that's very important! They can slow it down, they can speed it, they can put the fucker in reverse and run over your cat and do it all blindfolded. The problem is, and this is gonna sound stupid as fuck, the album has too many good songs on it at the same level. There's not that song that 2 clicks more desired that the rest. For example... Smells like Teen Spirit on Nevermind. All great songs, one stand out! The song "Looking for the Answer" completely changes the pace, tone, attitude, everything on this record for this one song and it is very melodically aurally pleasing. Then they go and turn everything upside down again with some techno dodger mix thrown in, which incredibly, even that ain't half bad either! That was their 'Midtro' as the put it and this stupid cunt was trying to think back to my Spanish vocab to think, what does that translate as into English, well just that! Finishing off with "Satan vs Cops" was also a treat as well for a great ska tune infused with a mix of 90s west coast pop punk rock, these boys literally do it all and they do it with style. 9/10

The InCiders - Megakill v2 Turbo (2011)

The InCiders - Megakill v2 Turbo (2011) [DIY]
Their opening track, the album name, is quite explosive with an element of heavy metal in there. It gathers your attention to throw you into the next song "Blood Will Be Spilt", which while lyrically is pretty good, and musically infact, the vocalist needs to bring more attention to himself and let everyone hear who's boss. The song finishes of with typically screamcore riffs and slowed down vocals. "XH558" however has excellent bridge and chorus riffs, with the emphasis placed on build up on the guitar during the verses. "God Bless Frank Gorshin" is good fast punk rock song, but it doesn't stand out too much from the others, that's not taking anything away from them, it's still a good song, but too much of the same thing can be a bad thing. "Cheyne-Stokes" starts off very slow and doomey with an audio clip and carrys on that.... and still.... and only at 3 minutes in does this song seem to even begin to launch. This sounds like it would be good in a movie while some lonely victim out to avenge the death of his family walks thrown the rain with a blood dripping knife in his hands, for an album though, terrible idea, it goes nowhere. "Windmills and Sidekicks" gives us one of the bands very long build ups, they push them too much in my opinion. But when the song does kick in theres no denying the talent of show and they power through it, but again the vocalist needs to make his presence known! Then the breakdown section at the end, it's too much emo hardcore sounding for me. "Fatal Mistake" sounds very much the same sadly and it doesn't stand out too much. "Moose's Tears" has a very big build up with a new audio clip about a school shooting and then the song seems to be looking at the incident from the shooters point of you to start with, the song is slow and not one of the best on the album.

Overall: In the end I was left a bit disappointed. There are section of this that is pretty good, but they ruin it by trying to do this metal and so called hardcore bits. When they do pull things together it starts to sound very similar and the vocalist really needs to stand up and be counted. He's supposed to be the glue, people go to shows that's who they look at, he needs to stand up and be counted cause right now he's just background noise. So much potential, little delivery I'm afraid. 5/10

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Ear Infection Volume 1 Compilation

Ear Infection Volume 1 Compilation (2011) [DIY]
Holy fucking shit. 42 tracks! However at this length it doesn't make it onto a CD and is exclusively a free online download, which the link to can be found at the bottom. Right off the bat however I'm annoyed. The presentation in this is pityful. This person has went to all the difficulty of attaining tracks from all of these bands, but then never bothered to do a track listing, instead opting for alphabetical order by song title and then not even numbering these. Pretty poor. So after sorting that, cause am I fuck letting that fuck up the order of things on my laptop we're off. I am very excited about this compilation, it could be something really special!!! Track names, followed by the artist and their location

All I Need – Death Punch/Los Angeles, California - An explosion to start us off with rhythmic punk n roll with Davey Havoc inspired vocals. An excellent example of the LA scene.

Anti-social – Distortion UK/Truro southwest, UK
- Distortion UK's offering to the comp is an brilliant fast paced and heavy bass line song, hitting hard as it progresses through with a drumming pace that you'd never want your heart to beat at!

Blood Stained Decks – Rodents Of Unusual Size/La Habra, California - Screwed up face chanting lyrics at you with an element of drunken chaos. Simple guitar riffs however, which doesn't stand out too much, with an element of up and down bass riffs.

Cancerous Gold – Fiction Reform/Los Angeles, California - Progressive sound with female fronted vocals which sounds not unlike the voice fronting physcobilly band The Creepshow. Musically a very misfits sound to it, but more advanced.

Cemetery Shuffle – Stupid In Stereo/Kennewick, Washington - Physcoabilly. Talks about Cadillacs and sounds like country music. Look at the title, will Physcobilly ever write anything other than this? Not a fan of this genre at all, few people can pull it off.

Chameleon – Grandpa’s Porno Collection/Upton, California
- Possibly one of the worst band names I've ever heard! A very Bad Religion sounding band and while not a bad song, doesn't really stand out for me.

Changes – Saints Of Sorrow/York, Pennsylvania - Heavy handed bass lines right from the off set with this one from Saints of Sorrow and with a very early Rancid style to them they're not half bad, but again not a stand out for me.

Cheers To Beers – For Fuck Sake/Riverside, California
- This is more like! Hardcore duel vocal (female and male) that screams brilliance. A drunken sing along anthem, which you'd expect with the song title, that I'd love to hear more of. Do I detect a hint of Aus-Rotten? yes, yes I fuckin do. Lyrically it's simple, but when you're singing about beer, you don't need to be a fuckin poet.

Criticized – Pipes And Pints/Prague, Czech Republic - To say they're not influenced by the Dropkicks I'd be an idiot, but boy do they make it their own. As good as any Murphys song going and a rival for the, so-to-speak, number 2 spot of bagpipe punk with the Real McKenzies.

D.U.I. – Beantown Boozehounds/Boston, Massachusetts
- A relaxed but catchy drum start to this song and as it hits.... it's not what I expected! What sounds like a banjo kicks in instead of the heavy guitar I was expecting, but it's still pretty good. The vocals kick in however and this guys voice sounds like he's trying to sound gruff, but just doesn't quite get there. The songs about drink driving home.....

Diamond Geezer – Bin Laden’s Daughter/Elgin, Scotland
- The only band on this compilation I've seen live and had the pleasure of putting on. A weird offering from the band, with purpose no doubt, but the verse sounds a bit.... shit I don't know how to describe it, like it belongs in a 70s disco of sorts! Still, a good track somehow!

Domestic – Husbands N Knives/Newton Abbot, UK
- All I can see in my head is that band that way on the Young Ones, Amazulu! Its a nice song though and the women's voice is too die for, I just hope she's able to diversify it with their other songs and be as good as she is on this track. Musically it's simple, but effective.

Drinking Beer – K.I.L./Apple Valley, Colorado - The drums and bass will keep you bouncing when you see this live, the guitar will tell you what to do next and the vocalist will be yer best pal for 2 minutes as you share a beer and sing about it. Quite interested to follow up on this band.

Eat Sleep Work Repeat – Dorm Patrol/Stromstad, Sweden - Heavy pop punk... you read that right, heavy ass pop punk. And it's not half bad either. The quick repetitive bass lines in the chorus allow this song to remain heavy with the vocalist's voice being very pre-puberty sounding, but it works for them and if you're into pop punk, you should check this lot out.

First In Line – Throb Zombie/Tempe, Arizona - Light hearted sound of pop punk returns with a lovely bit of technical guitar playing and the vocals are strange as well, but again they seem to work quite well though, and again if you're into pop punk, they're not bad. They need to lose the backing vocals though on the chorus.

The Foremost – Into The Morning Sky/Bogor, Indonesia - Emo hardcore with an Enter Shikari

Friendshit – Stereodaze/Roanoke, Virginia - The vocalist sounds confused, like he's just been handed a lyric sheet and a microphone and told to go for it. Very slow pop punk, but to be honest there's a slight detection that the guitarist won't be able to play any quicker or better even if he wanted to.

Goldfish Think Tank – God Given Ass/Helsinki, Finland
- Hints of Anti-Flag and Punk n Roll combined together make this band a not bad listen, but to be there's just too much ripped off of anti-flag in the verse riffs.

Incisor – 20 Days In/Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - This is very slow grunge rock more than anything else. Alice in Chains and Soundgarden sort of stuff, with a drummer that wants to go faster, but his bandmates won't let him, but that doesn't stop him from throwing in some random double bass pieces. Not that bad if you're into grunge.

Maggie – Mouth/Falmouth, UK
Excellent street punk stuff without being lyrically over zealous as most bands are. The women on vocals sounds a mix between a good old English lass and Avril Lavigne, strange but for reason unbeknown to me, sounds fuckin ace! If this lot get a decent quality recording of their music they'd be very damn good. Go see them Live if you can, they sound like they'd be amazing.

Mother Theresa – Dead Sara/Los Angeles, California
- From sounding like Avril Lavigne, to musically sounding like Avril Lavigne. To be honest this doesn't sound like it would be out of place in Hugh Grant's next RomCom. The vocalist trys to drag it into punk with her vocals, but where Brody Dalle sounds like a gravel truck, she sounds like she's a got a bit of sand on her burger by mistake and ate it.

My Hometown – Baldwin Park Disasters/Baldwin Park, California
- This is some good hardcore music. Another duel vocal combination, they seem to be all the rage these days. A good song to get chased in a car by the cops too, screams energy and demands that you do something about it!

My World – The Marksmen/Bury St.Edmonds, UK
- Finally some Physcobilly/Rockabilly that doesn't involve talk of zombies or a shit Elvis vocal impersonation. I'm afraid for all those positive points, the sound is rather mono tone sounding and although a nice wee solo in the middle there, the drummer doesn't sound like he's even playing with two hands.

Nation Of Sedation – Girlfixer/Nottingham, UK - Punk n motherfuckin Roll here baby with the ever impressive Girlfixer. Good enough to rip apart any local venue in Britian and still good enough to compete on the main stages. Would love to get my hands on their album, this is punk n roll at it's finest.

Necromaniac – The Horny Bitches/Montreal, Canada - It takes a while, but once we get there it's 100mph. There's something about an all female band, I'm hoping, called the Horny Bitches that just screams "Fucking cool!!" and guess what, they're fuckin quality. The 3 separate vocals work well. With the main vocalist sounding pretty rough in the throat and it adds a great edge to an already musically awesome band. Again, would love to hear more from this lot!

The New Censorship – Static Anthem/(???) - I kept waiting for something to happen. It's like 70s Beatles style rock n roll from California. Horrible. Worst track on the record so far, so out of place and mind numbingly boring.

No Escape – Stench/Wolverhampton, UK - Holy Shit, when and how was this recorded! Asides from sounding like on a tape deck player in someones concrete garage in 1977, it's not that bad. Vocally it's very "I wanna beeeeeeeeeeeeeee..." but musically it's very car chase style riffs and the snot nosed in your faceness of this band are not bad. I can see this band throwing their instruments around an awful on stage, and so they fuckin should.

Nothing Happened – Johnathan Mitchell/Madison, Alabama - What is this? Another snorefest, what happened to this being a punk compilation, this is just some rock music with a guy on vocals who wants to sound like a very proficient vocalist, but simply isn't. Next!

Nothing To Do – The Mustard Men/Joliet, Illinois - These lads sound fun. A punk and rock combination, with some bleeding throat lyrics, there's a wee fast bit at the end for a bout a second, that sounds like it's about to spiral out of control, then .... it doesn't!

Paralyzed Glue – No!/Baltimore, Maryland - Right from the start these guys sound odd and then the opening line of "I tried to call you" and then that seems to set the standard for this song. It doesn't even sound very pop punky either it's outwith of that, it's just... music for 14 year old girls. It's just.... yeah, that!

Patty Melted – The Ashamed/Richland, Washington - Fast everything! However it sounds a bit mono-tone of the opening verse. The chorus then sounds rockabilly, then death metal drums for 2 seconds and back to rockabilly. What the fuck is going on here! This lot are covering all areas, then into the verse again and fuck the monotone bit, that's out the window now, this lot are fuckin crazy, and I like it!

Pigs Equals Bacon – Chaos Confusion/Linkoping, Sweden -Street punk, chant along, you know the drill. It's all very repetitive and to be honest the chorus doesn't sound like it was recorded properly, like one guy was holding off on it and couldn't quite find his cue. Not bad, but not great.

Pogo And Provocation – Vision Days/Svitavy, Czech Republic - These boys sound like proper boot boy nutjobs and that's good for me. And one of the best songs on this album. It's got everything, the speed, the beat, the drunken sing along, as well as the na na na na. haha! I don't give a fuck what you think, this song is fuckin brilliant. I want more of their stuff. The sounds like a great band to go and see!

Reality – Narcolaptic/Hamburg, Germany - I don't really know what to make of this, it's punk n roll, it's got a tiny rockabilly edge in there that works well and real rockstar sounding vocalist. The sort of guys who's way to thin and where his trousers as low as Iggy used, wears a cowboy hat and fucks all the women on the tour bus. This is good bloody punk n roll folks!

Shut Your Mouth – Boobie Trap/Orange County, California - It's very repetitive and the women on vocals stays at the same level all the time only changing to extend the word at the end of almost every verse line, just cause you've a women on vocals doesn't make her Beki Bondage folks, there's a few bands out there, big ones who'll remain nameless, that try this. Not a great track.

Sliver Bullet – Within Our Sins/Cleveland, Ohio - Pop punk, too start with that starts in the with the, in my opinion, too loud kick drum recordings. With a soft reassuring voice, before the heavy screaming voice comes in to show that "remember, this is a hardcore song" with the guy trying to rip off In Flames. Another aimed at the mid teen female.

Skaters Haters – Scrap Monsters/Izhevsk, Russia - Now your fuckin talking! Heavy handed, well co-ordinated attack of the senses. Get up and bump into everyone in the crowd with your trophy, your beer, held high in your hand. Proper street punk and the first I've heard from Russia, here's hoping their compatriots have risen to the same standard they've set for themselves. Another band I will definitely follow up on!

Something For The Weekend – Mispelt/Northhampton, UK - This is pretty damn good! The guitar sounds a bit all over the place during the verse, but the lyrics are fantastic as is the vocalist at delivering them, however the part with the backing vocals, doesn't sound good with someone else, their main singer should stick to it. The one with the rougher voice. Very unique sound and something I'm all about finding more of!

Sticks And Stones – Twenty-Nineteen/Rittman, Ohio - While a not bad punk rock song musically, although it's not standing out that much, it's a very whiney voice and it doesn't sound that great. I can hear what they're trying to do, but it just doesn't seem to be coming together for them in my opinion.

Walking On – Combat 77/Hannover Hildesheim, Germany - Musically fantastic, this sounds like a great punk oi band. The guitar riffs, the drums are a bit simple, but they need to be for this song and the bass. But good god, that vocalist has to go or do something drastically different. It sounds like a cabaret act over the top of some proper hardcore skinhead music. It's just all wrong. The lyrics are pretty bad as well. Sorry guys. You're 75% brilliant.

Wanna Scream – The Benwahs/Birmingham, UK - Musically they don't sound unlike The Transplants, with the crazy cracking up lyric adventure of the female vocalist, but it's all very thrown in together and while it just about fits, I can't help but feel like someone has taken a pair of scissors to the jigsaw to get that last piece in.

What’s In The Big Black Bag? – Standard And Poor/Riverside, California - Musically it's rock n roll, with a wee rockabilly bridge thrown in with a standard rock solo. Lyrically it's one of the worst songs I've ever heard.

Overall: In the end this compilation was not that bad. I managed to find at least 5 bands I'll be following up on and 10 more that would not be turned off if they were playing at a party if peoples attention had been drawn to it. But there are some crap tracks on here. Like fuckin horrible. 5 or so. And the rest to be honest is quite generic, neither here nor there, just.... available. 7/10

Thanks: Regardless of what I thought of your track, a big thank you goes out to every single musician who donated a track to this compilation and a thank you to the guy who put it together. It takes a lot of work to get so many bands together. Well Done.

If you would like to download this compilation please visit this link :

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Ghetto Blaster - Think For Yourself Promo (2011)

Ghetto Blaster - Think For Yourself Promo (2011) [Riotska Records]
Old school ska meets rap in an all out breakdown confrontation of urban life and don't you dare tell me I over did that because that is exactly what I saw when I heard "Beloved GTA". Follow this up with "Whatchu Gunna Do" and we hit harder into the riffs that will have us stomping the streets around us well into the night. "Unite" brings us back again to the old school ska with something that sounds very much like a church organ with the quick as a hiccup lyrical breeze through. An almost reggae chilled out atmosphere surrounds the song. The sound quality of the last song makes me scream at this band! Granted I have the unmastered version of this particular song, so fuck it, throw that excuse out the window. The song itself, "Bank Korrupt" is a brilliant warp-speed-move-yer-fucking-arse of a tune. Even with the slow bits in it, you know where it's heading and while tension build up in a song is something I'm not a big of (and it's a long one), it is necessary, for that furious dart to the finish line, which we all know, we live, is the epitome of how it should be done. 7.5/10

No Choice Left - Self Titled EP (2011)

"No Choice Left - Self Titled EP (2011) [ Riotska Records]
Me being the cheeky bastard that I am downloaded the Limited Edition version. Granted I don't know what the entails like. The band start us off with "Wasted Minds" and it's hard to describe the sound these guys are pulling off. Progressive punk rock. It's not scared to slow down and make things a bit dramatic when it's needed, but neither are they afraid to Drop it down (obviously so they can Pick it up). "Kill The Truth" is the dramatic powerhouse taken from the Riotska Records Sampler. It sounds like the sort of reverberation you'd get if you played on the edge of a cliff to no one in particular, just an entire city in the distance. "Knowledge is Pain" is a little emo of a title for me, but I can see exactly where it's coming from. It sucks knowing too much, it can keep you awake at night. This song however is very mellow and while it has a message that's pretty clear and meaningful, I do prefer the rest of the EP. Like the song "Riot Now!", which wants you to.... well ye know, but still the music is fast and while not as dynamic as the first 2 songs, still commands a certain amount of "Pay fucking attention!". 7.5/10

LUVDUMP - Information is Power (2011)

LUVDUMP - Information is Power (2011) [Riotska Records]
After finding these guys on the Riotska Records Sampler, I had to get my mits on some more of their stuff. Luckily the band got int touch and pointed me in the direction of their 5 track EP. The EP starts off with the already reviewed (From the Riotska Sampler) title track "Information is Power" and echoing anthem of resistance and revolution. This is followed by "Gaza (Stop The War)", a melodic multi-person "woooo-ooooo" sing along song with ska roots and small protest video snippet thrown into the middle to reiterate what their saying. A powerful and fast tune designed to make you think! "Live For Today" is more west coast punk rock intro before switching to the east! Think NOFX and then bang Leftover Crack. Short with a simple message. Now after a speedy start to the song we can slow it right down with two-tone cruncher "Burn The Bank$", but don't get used to it, this band are more than happy to go from one extreme to the other when speed is involved and it works perfectly for them. A tranquil start sounds in the beginning of the slowest track on the EP. "This is England" has an almost reggae feel to it and throughout the song maintains the message of Anti-Racial Intolerance, which is thrown in our face like shit from a great height by the "I'm not Racist, but...." crowd. When I said it was the slowest track on the EP though, that's true, but they still need to do a 100mph sprint to the finish line, it what seems to be true LUVDUMP fashion. And I like it! This is followed by a secret track late on (I fuckin hate secret tracks, they do nothing but ruin the jukebox during a party and I don't want to sit in silence for 8 minutes before someone all of sudden screams blue fucking murder in my ear). This one isn't like that though. It's very calm and while it's a nice tune. It's way too out of place and not suited to the EP, in my very humble snot drenched, migraine ridden opinion right now! I look forward to their album release next year which I believe they are recording January 2012. 9/10

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Patrol - Never Say Never (2011)

Patrol - Never Say Never (2011) [DIY]
Essentially the band's Best of album, which includes everything they've released. re-recorded for this century, with all the digital doowinkles of modern music and it sounds pretty damn good to me. At 20 tracks long its one of these albums that you'll still be finding bits you like later down the line. A personal favourite being "SS Officer", as well as this strangely enticing "Innocence", not quite sure why but a ballad of a distorted life and surreal echoing chorus. The basis is that all of the song's on this album are all good songs, you don't get the reputation these guys have without writing at least a couple, but several of them are simply stand outs that just need to be listened to over and over or thrown into the playlist entitled "Pure Bangin' Choons". The thing is I get the feeling that no matter who you are, with this album, you're not going to like the 3 or 4 stand out songs I will, or your mates will or anyone will. It's that diverse that it offers you the option of more options! For instance I also found the song "Nite Life" quite interesting, but I've no doubt I could go back in a few months and pick something else out. "Unknown Soldiers" sounds pretty damn good to myself as well. In the end I'm glad I bought this album its good old school punk rock with a purpose! 8.5/10

Daddy No! - Self Titled EP (2011)

Daddy No! - Self Titled EP (2011) [Chipped Teeth]
At 5:47 long and the sheer speed and complete fucking violence of this EP, nobody has an excuse not to listen to this EP. Female fronted with vocals that sound like a gravel truck full of dynamite, you'll get the fear right off the bat. With 15 second solos (they way they were bloody meant to be done) they power through each song with the determination of an infection they must rid themselves of, but by all means spread, because it's greatly needed by everyone. The intro to "Get Down" makes me think transmission to the masses. My only problem with the EP is it does come together a bit too much with only "Get Down" and "Jakey Shakes" standing out. The other 3 sounds a bit too similar, but hey, they're brilliant. 9/10

Track Listing:
1) Under The Pavement Stones... The Beach
2) You've Been Dupt
3) Get Down
4) Cruisin' For a Bruisin'
5) Jakey Shakes


Monday, 17 October 2011

Joey Terrifying - Complete Collection (2008-2010)

Joey Terrifying - Complete Collection (2008-2010) [DIY]

Wtih Joey Terrifying now in the history books, well they've played more "Last Show Ever"s that I can remember, the time came to throw everything together and leave it as the lasting impression that the band made. It is a shame that the band only have 3 years together and release only 9 tracks because these are all incredibly good hardcore ska punk songs. Explains why they played over 150 shows in their time, plus 300 "Last ever shows". Honest this time, promise! haha.

So we start of with "National Insecurities" taken from their first release "The First Demo". A fast paced, sing along, pop punk number that sets us down the path of hardcore emo pop punk. "A Girl Called Mary" is very a slow rocky ska number and sounds very much like the sound of defeat in a relationship. "Troubled Times" starts off very pink floyd guitar string plucking/wanking before finally breaking into an almost funk bass line with a melodic a chorus line. Not bad. 6/10

Off of the "This is your Future" EP comes the song "What Treachery Is This?" within 10 months they've managed to kick it up several gears. The quality of the lyrics, riffs, recording, everything is much better and the ska is even more skankin! It sounds alot better that you can hear the thickness in Deeker's accent, it gives it some back bone. And the continuation of this into the song "Express Yourself Clearly" that breaks down the door every time the chorus hits. But the perfect end here was the song "Getaway Driver" the story of child expected to end up in the gutter. The guitar parts in this song are brilliant and the bass has it's fair share of mental bits and the lyrics are brilliant. 8/10

The final 3 sets are taken from "Triple Threat" split record released on Ska Mutiny Records. "National Insecurities II" is re-recorded and seemingly faster version of the original and vocalist Deeker does well to keep up with himself. A breakdown bit at the end thrown in, before the 100mph race to the finish line. "Actual Factual" reeks of the words ska and core. In one burst you have a military style snare drumming, in the next you've got the slowed down stereotypical skank riff, the kind that when you dance to it, while still skankin', you're only changing feet every 3 seconds instead of every 0.12 seconds. "Bomb 'Em Back" starts of with a riff that doesn't sound too unfamiliar from 28 Days Later. A very fitting end to this, their final release, the end is nigh so to speak. Before bang, and they're running at you with a lance under the arm aiming directly at your face. The echoing verse microphone manipulation, allows for the deception of a soldier at peace in a war field. 7/10

Overall: Well in all fairness I would have liked to see Joey T playing for another few years and do a full length release, and then ask themselves, should we stop playing? because I don't think they'd agree with the decision they've made just now. A great asset to the Scottish punk scene. 8/10


Vega's Loft - Hotrod (2011)

Vega's Loft - Hotrod (2011) [DIY]
Right from the Get go this album explodes into action with "Partner in Crime". It's almost a cross breed into metal in areas and it's heavy and it's pissed off. Another heavy hitter with "XX Syndrome", followed up by the energetic and in some places a bit experimental "Leightweight", the song seems to encompass a few bits of everything and it's very well put together. "Something's Come Up" is a more pop punk song and not too bad, but their version of "Irish Rover" is pretty damn good. "Urban Decay" is duel vocal conversation and I can't help but feel that if this song was recorded a bit better it would be a great anthem. I must admit I wasn't a fan of the track "RIP", the middle was too preoccupied with short bursts of string wanking, but the the drumming when it speeds up sounded very good. "Hotrod" comes out the gate like a the world's shortest hurricane and they descends into a bit of an Unseen style vibe vocally, it's not bad. "London Lives" is a not bad wee tune either, but I start to feel that by the end of the album, everything starts to come together a little too closely and I definatly prefer the first half of the album to the second. I do think with better recording, everything might become a bit more clearer so to speak, but the band have definitely thrown a lot of work into this album and deserve the credit for writing a not bad wee album, a defiant boost if you like you're pop punk rock. 7.5/10

Note: This band play very well live, I suggest you catch them at a show if you can.

Track Listing:
1. Partner In Crime Intro
2. Partner In Crime
3. XX Syndrome
4. Lightweight
5. Something's Come Up
6. Irish Rover
7. Urban Decay
8. R.I.P

9. Hotrod Intro
10. Hotrod
11. London Lives

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Punktoberfest @ Beat Generator, Dundee

Punktoberfest @ Beat Generator, Dundee (Saturday October 15th 2011)

After making the wee one hour journey from Aberdeen down to Dundee I headed for the Beat Generator on Dundee's North Lindsay Street. Need a special mention here for this: Is that not the coolest gig ticket you've ever seen!? It's printed on see-through plastic! It's a crackin venue of about 300. Every drink I bought seemed to be £2.50 so it was affordable and the sound was pretty damn good. Outside there was kebab shops wherever I looked so I was never going to go wrong for munch either. The only problem with the venue was the heat! Jesus Christ is was a boiler room in there and the venue was only half full! I'd imagine you'd be struggling to breath at full capacity. It was that hot it made me tired! Enough of the venue, it's the bands we're here to see....

Maze McPunklet: One of Dundee's local promoters (Punklet Promotions) heads to the stage to open up the day with her acoustic ballads and poetry. She plays well and with her confidence growing evermore each times she takes to the stage, you can see this lass has a bright future. In my opinion, a few stand out songs and she'll be ready to start the rounds with her set around the UK. As usual, the crowd loved "Osama's the Man", which you can find on the fanzine, kindly donated by the lady herself. 7.5/10

Bobby Stickah: It was nice to see Bobby again, after seeing him at Slaughterfest, and to be honest I didn't realize how weird the lad is. Some dodgy tunes and dodgy vocals but an all round experience. He definitely puts everything he has into his set and it shows with his onstage antics. 7/10

Vega's Loft: I remember seeing the band in Aberdeen a few years back and loving their set, but I failed to follow up on it. Today was no different. They played brilliant. Pop Punk Rock with some bollocks, fast as hell and great to see live, this band has a good sound to them, they just need that little bit extra, but I'll be fucked if I know what it is, they've played well to me! 8/10

Crimedesk: In all fairness to the band, musically they weren't too bad. I liked the bass riffs, but I couldn't help but feel that all the songs started to sound the same and a wee bit bland once you put them all together. Vocally the band seemed mono-tone with no sense of anything behind it, I just couldn't get into it. 5/10

The Cundeez: These boys obviously are from Dundee, and sing about, being from Dundee, but they're much more than that. They were brilliant. I've always liked their recorded stuff, but it seemed a bit jokey to me, but live, this band played so much higher than my expectations. Get them seen! 8/10

Panic By Flare: The band played a not bad set actually, they were just a bit too pop punky skater punk for me, sadly there was only 2 or 3 songs that stood out for me, but like I said they gave it some welly. Check out their myspace for a few tunes if your into that sorta thing, it's well done for what they're aiming for. 7/10

R.P.G.: A not bad set from the guys, but they were a bit bland in my opinion. Good enough to bop your head along to but I just couldn't get excited about it, hopefully I'll see them again and I'll be mistaken like. 6/10

Overspill: What an absolute treat to finally see this band play live after years of seeing their t-shirts darted about Scotland. 2 singers. One Hardman, One nutter, two fuckin mad men. The music was varied between almost street punk in places, reggae in at least one song and musically they were fuckin brilliant. A smaller packed venue would have seen them get the full whack, that's where I reckon they'd be at their best. Can't wait to see this band again. 9/10

The Dot Cottens: In all fairness, they had a tough act to follow, but they gave it a blast. The songs were another set of head bouncers, but I'm afraid it was just impossible to live up to the bar that had just been set. Points for onstage banter and generally being nice lads like, but musically they seems a wee bit out of place, although they'll probably tell me to go fuck masel. 7/10

Pissed On Pissed Off: Holy fucking shit! First time I've seen them, every time I meant to something came up, but listening to their EP online with two blokes on vocals and it's good, but with the new line up, with a bloke and lass on vocals. Spectacular! The sheer dominating menace of Jim "Intimidation" Brown, when he's onstage with a mic in his hand is just that, Intimidating. The raw anger of this ENTIRE band however is something I've been missing from the bands I've seen in the last few months and the sheer heart, soul, sweat, blood and puke thrown into this band's performance is everything this scene needs. 10/10

Killing for Religion: Let me get something of my chest here. Apart from the last 2 songs, I don't class this band as a punk band at all. Vocally yes, but musically, they were clearly a metal band to me. Regardless, the burst onto the stage with a fair amount of raw power through the speakers and desire, but a bit more stage presence is definitely needed here. They gave it their all, much respect for that. 6.5/10

The Rotten Apples: I like a bit of Oi every now and again and in my opinion there's a lot of it that sounds very similar, it's the same with every genre. Sadly the lads, just didn't cut it for me. They were still good for the gig and no doubt they played well, the tunes just seemed to lack that slight edge and the stage presence was a bit lacking as well, but I reckon if they read this, get angry, and go tits on stage, It might just work!! 7/10

Patrol: I was looking forward to seeing Patrol, again a first time (you'd think I've been to a gig before), and they played pretty well in my opinion. To be honest by this stage I was fucking knackered and was dying for ma bed and clapping them was using up the last of my energy, but they deserved because they played well and I look forward to seeing them again, the crowd loved them. 8/10

Conclusion: I didn't catch The Eddies has I had to get a lift back to Arbroath, so apologies to the band for that. The word that floated about was that Middle Finger Salute didn't even bother telling anyone they weren't playing and just didn't show up, but they did post up on their facebook that they've had to pull out of the Scotland dates due to personal reasons. However whether the promoter got word of this is another story, which I know nothing about.

All in all some great performances, but a few average ones as well. Well Done to the lad that put this on, didn't manage to catch him to say Thank You, and bravo to the Dundee scene for showing up in good numbers. Was a decent day out. 8/10

Best Band: Pissed On Pissed Off

Thanks: To all the bands who played, regardless of my opinion, thank you for playing. The lad who put this on, Andy I'm told, it's people like you who keep the scene alive. Again to the Dundonians for coming out and to the Beat Generator for being a cool venue. Also to Maze McPunklet for letting me crash on her sofa and her old man for the Veggie fry up in the morning. Much Appreciated.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Riotska Records Sampler (2011)

Riotska Records Sampler (2011) [Riotska Records]
I got handed this compilation at Rebellion for nothing and it's a fucking gem. Opening track "Information is Power" by Luvdump is brilliant. The echoing melodic chorus lyrics of "The wanna run your life, by taking all your rights" is simply awesome. From Cradle to the Rave have an impressive track on here as well and I'll be trying to get my hands on more of their tunes. An awesome acoustic track from the Banditos followed by some breakdown rap ska crossbreed with a vocal track that sounds impeccably close to Stza Crack by Ghetto Blaster. Divine Spark's contribution is the the headbanger "Call of the Wild" and it's pretty damn good. Beng Beng Cocktail's "Gone Saccharine Gone" is definitely the odd number in this comp, an acoustic pick it up verse with a traditional Cuban style sound. Speaking of pick it up, the opening words to the ska session of a song that is "Spider Ridden Bats" by Night Gaunts, get yer skankin shoes on for this lot. Nini Zombi's "Zombie Army" and right off the bat I've my negative cap on thinking, "oh fuck off", not another physcobilly load of shite. Miles off. Ska Punk, brilliantly done I might add. I've always hated Zombie lyrics. It's boring and the same old shit over and over again. Basically filling the gaps when you've nothing worth while saying. Music is great, lyrics are shite. Fast as fuck right out the gate from No Choice Left. It's a strange mix of a song, incredibly unique, give it a listen and you'll understand. "O.F.C." are throw on here, with a very shit recording I might add and it spoils it a bit. I can see the potential within the band, but they're all over the place and don't seem to have any organization at all. Thee Infidels add a bit of sauce to the mix to finish of (My copy was missing the 12th track) with a West Cost punk rock theme going on there with the ska verses with the song "We're not going down".

And then I got the 12th track! "Symptoms of our Trading System" by Anti/Venom. Starts off with a clip from Predators and a slow build up, before taking off like a jumbo jet driving down a high street leaving a sea of destruction behind it. A voice not unlike that of Stza Crack, again, but more mellow somehow. Heavy punching with a power anthem chorus right to the end. Then it sounds like someone has a cold afterwards. Not bad at all.

Grab it online for 10p + a free Riotska Records patch! 8.5/10

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

The King Blues - Punk & Poetry (2011)

The King Blues - Punk & Poetry (2011) [Transmission Records]

From the heights of "Save The World, Get the Girl", the next step, after seeing them at Rebellion 2010 before the release of this album was one of discontent. The new material it seemed lacked, the band growing further from their audience as this once underground movement of a band became mainstream, and not the band, but rather the movement itself seemed to lose the momentum of what they were trying to achieve. Well the King Blues needed to come out swinging and they did, much better than I has anticipated they would.

The opening track "Last of the Dreamers" gives an intro of sorts to this is a dedication, get ready for it! And how. As far as songs go, you can't go far wrong with "We are Fucking Angry", not just the background, but the foreground song to a world in upheaval and with revolution so thick in the air you can't move for it. "Set The World on Fire" is the perfect song to make an impact on the mainstream circuit as well as being a good sing along when it's on in the pub, very easy on the ears this one. The thrown in track "Dancehall" seems a little out of place and seems an excuse to get creative with some instruments. A very Spanish vibe comes off of the track "The Future's No What it Used to Be" and again it's a track that's very easy on the ears and it's a nice chill out song, that is until it all of sudden bursts into some horrible techno club "ya jungla massive" bit and then chills back out again. Not a Classic. "I Want You" is, as with most King Blues songs, lyrically brilliant. The song oozing tons of pop punk and it comes together very well, another one for the mainstream to get into. And now one of my personal favourites off the album. If the last song was lyrical brilliance, this ones is pure genius. "5 Bottles of Shampoo" is a simple observation of the battle of sexes and how much women have to deal with as the so called 'lesser sex', a broadcast of liberation. Every person should hear this song, women: allow this song to show you how brilliant you can be. men: allow this song to show you how the opposite side lives. "Sex Education" comes across as the porno education notification song. With everyone always making so much fuss about whether we're being taught too young, too early, too much, not enough, the powers at be seem to be missing the point. If you're not teaching us, porn is, and you complain your society is indecent. It wouldn't be a King Blues album without Itch's ukulele and "Shooting Fascists", with the simple message, "Your Granddad didn't vote for Fascists, he shot 'em". Upon hearing "Headbutt" for the first time last year it sounded clear that they had a more mainstream approach for this album, but after a few listens it's an incredibly well written love song that is very unlike the usual garbage on the radio. It seems what I missed here was that very point. It's mainstream music these days, but with a point, unlike so many other tunes, it's the alternative mainstream so to speak. "Does Anyone Care About Us" is also pretty easy on the ears, but "Everything Happens For a Reason" is defiantly another love song for the masses, not entirely bad.

While this is definitely not as good as "Save the World" or even "Under the Fog" in my opinion, it's still pretty good. It'll be interesting to see what direction they go down for their fourth album, I'll defiantly be getting my hands on it though, I'll be anxious to see the outcome. 7/10

Casulaties Back Catalouge : A Quick Glance

For the Punx (199?) - This album is the birth of the typical Casualties style. Life on the streets, the injustices of being prejudiced against and songs about just being a punk in general. [Listen to: Riot, Punk Rock Love] 6/10

Underground Army (1997) – Taken from the name of Scotland's Threats song, this album still has a rather undeveloped sound to it, but still a good listen. [Listen to: Underground Army, Rejected and Unwanted] 5/10

Stay Out of Order (2000) – Everything starts to come together a lot more with this album. They sound tighter, faster and the songs off this album sound brilliant live. Still missing that uniqueness about it though [Listen to: Fight for your life] 6/10

Die Hards (2001) – This album kicks everything up a gear. The explosion of the opening track and the anthem that is Die Hards. The band have your attention now and they're not letting go. [Listen to: Get off My Back, Nightmare] 8/10

On The Front Line (2004) – This album has everything, the songs now sound much more diverse from one another and they've spent the last 3 years doing very well in writing this album. I cannot recommend this album enough. Also available a year later in Spanish, which sounds pretty damn good as well, called “En La Linea Del Frente”. [Listen to: On the Front Line, Unknown Soldier/Marching Joe, Tomorrow Belongs to Us, Criminal Class] 10/10

Under Attack (2006) – They literally couldn't have done themselves any more justice with this release, a bit more powerful and fantastic. It's a toss up between the two for my preferred album. [Listen to:System Failed Us Again, On City's Streets] 9/10

Made in N.Y.C. (2007) – This is a live album, but fantastic. I've never been a fan of live albums, it's impossible to capture the feeling from the gig on a CD or DVD, but fuck they come close, and with both formats. I'm fairly crawling up their arses now I know, but bugger it, they're just too good. 10/10

We Are All We Have (2009) – Upon my first several months of listening to the album, I just couldn't get into it and indeed I know a lot of people who prefer it to the previous 2 session albums, but I went back to it several times and I got into it. The riffs are still explosive, hell if not more, but I can't help but feel there is something missing. Maybe it's that there are less drunken sing along songs than on the previous album, but hell there's still a good few there. [Listen to: Hearts Bleeds Black, In The Tombs, Stand Against Them All] 8/10

Can't Stop Us [DVD] (2007) – This DVD follows the band through their tours of Japan and Mexico. It gives you an insight to the scene mecca that is Japan, well it's better than Blackpool for 4 days a year ain't it. The rich diversity between the two countrys in immence, even more so within the confines of their respective local punk rock scenes. It's a glourious insight into the band and a little taste of touring the world.