May 22, 2018

Smashin' Podsistors 34: It's A Bob Seger Free Weekend!


This weekend is Memorial Day Weekend in the US of A. In the state of Michigan, it marks the unofficial start of summer. "A Bob Seger free weekend" is probably against the law to declare in this state on such a weekend (or any weekend for that fact.)

I bet right now there are weird uncles, creepy dads and dirty grandfathers making some ultimate 3 day weekend Bob Seger mix to celebrate with while they scorch hot dogs and then serve them on a paper plate with the American flag printed on them.

I will hopefully avoid such situations this weekend. Oh. and don't waste your time or mine commenting stuff like "but the System ruled, dude." Yeah, I know they did. I grew up here and have heard Bob everyday of my life so I am well aware of that. Just for one day though, it would be nice to not hear any Silver Bullet Band anywhere, y'know?

In other words, you will not hear anything from the Seeg' in this episode of Smashin' Transistors. It could be worse. Y'know, like an ALL Kid Rock weekend.


What you will hear:
Jerry Cole & His Spacemen - Deep Surf 
Deadbeat Beat - Bar Talk
Todd Rundgren - Couldn't I Just Tell You 
The Lice - He's the Chair 
Subsonics - You Got Eyes 
-words from the host-
En Attendant Ana - Night 
Carlton Melton - Way Back When 
Bad Habit - The Garden 
The Sueves - The Button 
Razorbumps - Workin' Bees
 -words from the host-
Wire - Map Ref 41 N 93 W 
Iceage - The Day The Music Dies 
Silver Apples - I Have Known Love 
Hookups - Go Find It 
Gen Pop - Din
-words from the host-
Gasoline - I Just Low 
Jessie Fortune - Too Many Cooks 
Patois Counselors - Last Heat 
The Hecks - In The Dirt 
The Mo-Dettes  - White Mice
-words from the host- 

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May 19, 2018

GALLERY NIGHT "I Want To Die Here" 7inch EP


It's been a spell since we've heard some noise for ex Baseball Furies and Tyrades popinjay Jimmy Hollywood. Judging from what's going on with this latest combo, Gallery Night, it sounds as all that noise was kept pent up and poked with sticks until it was fully determined that it was all about to ignite from becoming such a caustic and volatile mixture. 

Harkening to a heavy sound that trashed a few eardrums late 80's/early 90's (We're talking the AmRep thing here. Not Grunge.), thick, oily smoke seems to rise from the needle when the swirly pummel and negative demeanor of "I Want To Die Here" vibrates through the needle.



Pungent swamp gas seeps through every crack and crevice of "Young Love Doesn't Last." It flails in a disturbed contortion, giving the creeps to all that have witnessed it. Visions of the Scientists launching bombs in Unsane's direction come to mind. Just around the corner are Surgery and Vertigo drolling over a magazine with pictures of up north hunting adventures in it.



Disoriented with a head feeling it is feeling the effects of huffing bleach in search of some new kind of buzz, "Cruel Youth Story" is Gallery Night saying they want to take you for a ride. They aren't asking though, they are telling as they set the into a really rusted roller coaster car. Riddled with exposed jagged metal edges, it's then noticed there is no way to be strapped in as the chain drag ascends twisted rails. It's going to plummet hard and fast. The jerks, jumps and jostles of the ride has left most bloody, bruise and battered. For the rest, the fate was even worse.

Attend the viewing at Big Neck Records

May 16, 2018

RED MASS Rat Race 7inch EP

When Montreal's Red Mass first established themselves around a decade ago, I would most likely mention how the band was the brainchild of Roy V aka Choyce who was in bands such as Les Sexareenos, Daylight Lovers and the CPC Gangbangs. I would've then perhaps shared a story (the could be told on the record) of one of the adventures or experiences I had when hanging out with said bands.

I can't really do that now though. Details have faded a bit through the years. Particular points would seem almost like a lifetime ago. Such seems appropriate though as Red Mass sound doesn't really resemble the 'Reenos violent frat party riot, the Lovers red meat eatin' &a rye whiskey sippin' garage sound or the absolute RAWK action Gangbangs often kicked out (which also earn them the distinction of being one of the best live bands of their time.) Where those bands tended to bang something out from primordial instincts, in a lot of cases Red Mass is exceedingly more cerebral as well as bewitching in the way they approach particular dark corners of music.

Acting as a collective with the intentions of keeping things constantly fluid, it makes little sense to cite and compare one Red Mass record to another as, other than Roy and vocalist Hanna L Is Dead, who appears on the recordings from one occasion to another tend to be completely different. This makes each release have a common thread that runs through all of them but also has them sounding new and different than what has been heard by them before each time.

Traces agit-funk slithers its way through the choppy fuzz that drives the title track, making the listener wonder if any dancing to it should be some kind of snakelike twist or something a bit more spastic.


While that track is something that might fill the floor at a dance party I'd considered attending the other two would bum out any chemically enhanced groove ninnies (which plenty of them need to have happen to them anyway.) Erick Bradshaw of Cyanide Tooth/Maximum Ernst lends his dulcet tones and always sunny disposition to the jittery art punk of "Today I Die" while Xflanx of Brutal Knights and Dead Wife's RJ Smith sound like they're strangling each other over a gnarl of fervent hardcore on "Aggressive Tendencies."


Request guidance at It's Trash records.

May 8, 2018

Smashin’ Podsistorscast 33: Like An Old Rolling Rock Bottle



No glass line tanks here but in episode "33" we do tender premium noise for your enjoyment as a tribute to your good taste.




What you'll hear: 

 Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Don't Cry No Tears 
Hue Blanc's Joyless Ones - Bloody Nights at the Hotel Bar 
The Total Rejection - Vampire Cats (Itches) 
Flaming Lips - Kim's Watermelon Gun 
Speeding Motorcycle - Like Forever 
 -words from your host- 
Perverts Again - Get You Out Of College 
Cavern Of Anti-Matter - Make Out Fade Out 
Paint Thinner - Glistening Dots 
Flying Saucer Attack - A Silent Tide 
Yves Bernard - Dérapage Ethylique 
-words from your host- 
The Sueves - Never Been to the Beach 
The White Wires - In My Bed 
Honey Cone - Stick-Up 
Gino and the Goons - Glory Days Gone 
The Roamin' Togas - Bar The Door 
-words from your host-
Iceage - Take It All 
The Psychedelic Furs - Flowers 
ISS - Soft Youth 
Stiff Love - Up In Your Room 
Red Cross - Annette's Got The Hits 
-words from your host-

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May 6, 2018

STIFF LOVE Trouble 7inch EP

No matter how many time my folks claim it's (still) just a phase and no matter how many time starchy business associates and random squares give me a puzzled or concerned look when I reply to the question of "what kind of music do you like" I'm still probably gonna get goosebumps for the thrill for hearing some punk rock til the day slide my body into the crematorium.

Not just any punk rock though as what has come with all the years is the knack of saying "Nah, I'm not believing it. This is bullshit."

Olympia, Washington's Stiff Love are not bullshit. Fronted by Xtine of Lysol, this record sounds unhinged and set to explode after immediately after the first wiggly and wild guitar chord of "Walk In The Dark" is bashed out.


Thoughts of Redd Kross at their teenage snottiest and, because of the town they live in will probably become mandatory rock blog crits to namedrop 'em, the most feral Bikini Kill songs the world never heard both come to mind as the four songs make the stereo speakers foam at the mouth like something rabid. The thing is though with tracks like "Up In Your Room" there's a mischevious bounce to rage that gives them a bit of a garage rock swagger.


Granted, the garage is probably gonna go into ablaze with the kind of fires the band is setting so do your best to get out of the building with this record before the place turns to a pile of ashes.
Get cocked at Neck Chop Records

May 2, 2018

3 Floyds Space Station Middle Finger American Pale Ale


Recently a friend sent me a text after returning from a road trip. It said "Just got back from a road trip. Picked you up a souvenir while passing through Munster, Indiana." I wonder what it might he might've of gotten to give me. A copy of the NWI Times? A t-shirt that says Calumet Shoreline on it?

No and No. You say Munster, Indiana to any good beer loving denizen on the planet and there's only one thing that comes to mind.

That is, of course, 3 Floyd brewery. In the land where Smashin' Transistors sit, their beers are not at all distributed. Because of that, the chance of getting to taste one is pretty uncommon. It's always a special day when they can be. I hadn't had the Space Station Middle Finger before so away we go.

Bright orange and slightly hazing in color, a soft pour produced a slight head the stuck around as a light cap for a while. Tart and tropical were big on the aroma agenda. Grapefruit, pineapple and mango all came to the forefront when giving it a sniff. Back those up were wafts of white pepper, honey and pine.

The grapefruit is pretty huge in the flavor department too. Not a tongue piercer or anything but definitely bringing a bit of a pucker up front. Melon, pineapple, mango and apricot notes hang around the middle bringing something a little sweet and slightly musky. As the beer breaths, characteristics of honey and freshly baked biscuits come to the fore. The neat complexities close out with some dashes of ground pepper and lemongrass. The finish is crisp and slightly astringent but not sticky.

If you're an aficionado of beers with a bit of a juicy fruit profiles or dig some hop bite in your brew but are a bit burnt out on some of the ones out there now where the hops bomb everything in sight decimating nuances like, y'know malts and grains, this is one to seek out and enjoy.
Flip the bird and sip the brew at 3 Floyds

Apr 24, 2018

LASSIE "YES! LIKE THE DAWG" cassette


New Wave. Not in a some platitudinous "planning a theme party" big hair/funny sunglasses/talkin' Valley Girl kind out of way. I'm talking truly bonified oddballs. Too freaky for the crowd that took theater class and boisterous and funny for the kids that always hung out in the art room. They may not be hip with the coolest and newest music out there, but everything they were into was a bit strange and usually listened to at a ridiculously loud volume.

That's the impression that Leipzig Germany's Lassie gives off. Party music that changes whatever the shindig's theme was just by them showing up. Hell, it not even fair to call it a shindig until these kooks show up. It was merely a gathering of windbags and imposters.

Straight off the band bums out the shiny, happy people with "Phone Calls On My Deathbed" by showing an affinity for leaving DEVO LP's out in the sun all day and then reenacting what it sounds like when it's put back on the turntable and played at 45 speed.


Once that jerkin' and jarrin' has cleared those squares off that dancefloor and, hell, out of the house in fact, it's time for Lassie to thumb their noses at them even more.

"Modern Vacation", which pokes jibes of the goofy ass kids who somehow become influencers on social media, is like a Sparks songs without operatic show tune bits with much more noisy mood swings and Segway references.

Yes, you heard that right. Segway references. They also wrote a song about the mall cop who rides around on one and whose job is to stop everyone's fun. Most likely he's not a fan of Métal Urbain or the Monkees so he won't appreciate the ode they penned for him.


"Tiger In My Tank" probably won't do much to improve gas mileage or performance of a set of wheels, but it's 1950's boppin' dropped into a fluorescent future that sci-fi writers have promised (yet still haven't really quite delivered on...yet) was probably written for a car chase set either on Mars or the most hyperactive animation series for the kids subsisting mostly on sugary snacks set yet.


I dunno about your neighborhood but mine could sure use a combo of loons like Lassie. I would then know that if I saw a flyer for a new wave dance party happening around town, it just wouldn't be some boor playing Howard Jones mp3's off his laptop.
Fetch it at the Bandcamp page.

Apr 21, 2018

Smashin’ Podsistorscast 32: The Winter Didn’t Want To End


It's a few weeks shy of May. The weather has been insisting it is still late February.

This episode sets a raging blaze of sonic heat.

What you'll hear:

The Brides - Pushed Around
Silver Abuse - Idi Amin’s Tortoise
Carlton Melton - Electrified Sky
Gary Wrong Group - Heroin Beach Serpents Attack
The B-52's - 52 Girls (1978 7'' Version)
-words from the host-
LASSIE - Modern Vacation
En Attendant Ana - Time
Index - Fire Eyes
Warm Bodies - Love O' Clock
Cruz Somers - Sit & Stare
-words from the host-
Hank Wood &The Hammerheads - How'm I Supposed To Wake Up In The Morning
The Fabuletts - Can't Stay Away
Choke Chains - Galactic Overlord
The Resource Network - Albatross
Pram - Bewitched
-words from the host-
Clone Defects - Not as Good as Gold
The Total Rejection - Licking Furniture (You'll Find Me On The Left Side)
The Monsieurs - High School Star
The Drags - Not So Good Luck Charm
Dow Jones and the Industrials - Can't Stand The Midwest
-words from the host-

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Apr 19, 2018

HANK WOOD and the HAMMERHEADS S/T LP


Before we even get started here can we all just come to the conclusion that Hank Wood and the Hammerheads are one of the greatest punk rock bands of the 21st century?

Wheezy blurts from what sounds like an organ that was moonlight requisitioned from the most obnoxious teen beat band on the block, guitars that seem to be an aural equivalent of bare skin sluing across battered on concrete and a voice that makes a person think of an angry dog with Tourette's, the band has made three frenetic full-lengths that that are of their own monster.

Are they some sort of mutated garage punk? It is old school hardcore getting mauled by woodland creatures with rabies? Is this some an art grunge prank that actually works? It's really up to the ear of the beholder of where they wanna lump the band as. The melancholy piano figures "I Can't Stay" may confound fans from any faction as it opens the album. Once the frustration rises to the top though, the fuse is lit and the first powderkeg of sound takes flight in an explosive lift off of twisted notes, all will yell in unison "YES! HAMMERHEADS!"


The cacophony that band makes has always seemed to be fueled by frustration and cemented in a disharmonic outlook of what surrounds them. Despondency looms and lingers has always loomed large in their bag of tricks as songs like "It's Lonely In This World All Alone" and "How'm I  Supposed To Wake Up In The Morning" can attest. While in other hands such titles would most likely stick the earholes into someplace like Morrissey land, the former here seems to have made a stop at a really weird disco to leave with space funk dust in its pockets. The latter decides to soundtrack goth go-go bar.




A particular rage has always been part of Hank Wood and the Hammerheads template and there's plenty of that with the wild explosions that are songs like "You Wanna Die" and "It Must Be Nice" to a point where if the album just went for doing something it for the rest of the record, it would still be something exiciting and would take ages to get sick of.



The thing is though amidst such internal fires also curveballs like thrown in such things like the almost bongriptastic "Love Is A Cold Wild Tile" and they way"Nothing But A Man" answers the question what happens if you lived on a diet of Wire's Pink Flag while practicing fracturing dance moves that will confound while continuing to pummel.

.
It seems with a lot of great punk bands, hell even great rock-n-roll bands, is that once they get something that is a sound all of their own, it seems they then lock it tight and hermitically seal it. It eventually becomes a biproduct of stale air. There's enough cracks and wormholes with Hank Wood and the Hammerheads clatter that invites odd smells, strange mildews and weird bugs to come in and make it different each time.
Do your nailing at Toxic State records

Apr 6, 2018

The SKIDS Crooked Cop 7inch EP


The Skids are not a reformation of the Scottish punk band that was the guy from Big Country's first group. First off, the guy from Big Country been dead for a while (though Richard Jobson of the Skids did a reunion show under the name in 2010 with another guy who was in Big Country.) Secondly, these Skids are from Melbourne, Austraila.

Having not listened to the Scottish Skids in a thousand years, I had to look up one of their songs online to be reminded what they sounded like. These Oz Skids don't sound similar.

I think if you listen to these Skids with headphones on you will hear actual knuckles dragging beneath the grunts of the singer and the loads of mud the band dredges up.

With "Crooked Cop" as the first impression and the boozy lummox stomp tempo it's easy to think that the band is absolutely surly and doesn't like to have a good time (unless their idea of having a good time is giving everyone else the creeps) but if that was the case, they probably wouldn't cop a Chuck Berry lick like the do on "Alright With Me."
 
The thing is though, if you entered this band in a Chuck Berry lick copping contest the judges might say "Why do they sound so lunkheaded about the whole thing." I'd probably vote for them for that same reason though.
Spin out at Shipping Steel Records