Dec 8, 2016

KOOL 100S Skulls, Blood, Pussy And Violence Axes Daggers Upside-Down Crosses 7inch EP

     Ever pick up a punk rock record and see the words "Play Loud" printed somewhere on it? Does putting that one there act as an instruction manual for those who may not know or something? My first reaction is usually "Yeah! No shit, dude. It's a punk rock record. Not some Yanni CD."
     This single from Kansas City's Kool 100s doesn't have such a statement emblazoned anywhere on it. Doesn't need too. Even at a lower volume this thing blisters. A twelve string guitar is used on these three songs not for some kind of folky jangle or jazzbo bullfighting themes but to reinforce the blare and to double up on the disorienting and ear scorching.
     There's hooks all over these songs but they're all covered in a napalm gel. "Slow Boat" is a sunshine pop song being played by a pack of wolverines hellbent on giving everyone rabies while "Queer For Him" and "Trainwreck" wail some like wild ass caveman rock-n-roll designed for setting fire to hornets nests to. The longest track on this record, the less than 2 and a half "Healthy Dick", is like being dosed with a hit of acid and then whacked up side of the head with a sledgehammer.
     Play loud? Yeah, no shit, dude!
www.facebook.com/Goodbye-Boozy-records-290057827714548

Dec 4, 2016

DD OWEN S/T 12inch EP

     When sitting down to type out some word about this record I was going to take the angle of something like "More often than not when an artist decides to record under has own name after being associated with others, they tend to do something a little more introspective and personal. Sick Thoughts/Chicken Chain/Gluebags dude DD Owen though has always wore his heart on his sleeve."
     After I read the one sheet to the record though I found that it was taking the same angle. That just leaves me to talk about the songs themselves.
     Yeah, that heart on his sleeve things I mentioned early? I forgot to add that the sleeve is encrusted with the dried blood the heart has spewed out as well as it being puke stained and stinking but it's worn there none the less.
     "I Should Have Been Aborted" launches things off like the Heartbeakers throwing an adenoidal conniption fits and from then on in, it's pretty much good time celebration of all kindsa things negative and depraved. Fizzy carbonated buzzsaw's like "Shattered" and "Degenerate" make a greasy mess like the Reatards hacking up the Ramones and putting them into a deep fryer, "Son Of The Devil" summons a bong packed with rat poison to be lit and Fonzie rockers may find themselves lured in by "Low Life Baby" 50's feeling only to find out their flies in a web and about to be eaten by the most repugnant spider ever. Spin this record once and feel an infection coming on. It'll be the first of many times to follow because the sickness becomes infectious.
http://12xu.net

Nov 23, 2016

COUTEAU LATEX "Hostile Enviroment" 7inch

     Sometimes when you hear about to musicians collaborating with each other, especially if their styles of music seem quite kindred, the sound of what it will sound like is already imagined in the head. When I first read that Seth of the Useless Eaters was doing a thing with Lise of Switzerland's Staches I figured it would be something a bit ansty in a somewhat trashy/most likely ratty garage rock way.
      I was a bit off in my assumptions about I was about to hear. Minimal synths bloops and a fat poly drum snap teeter between a bouncy pop ditty and Rev/Vega bad trip on "Hostile Environment." Seth lays hypnotic bass rumbles behind and Lise's processed vocals sound like a robot that got programmed to show emotions but the only two that it uses are frustration and alienation. On the flip "Morphée" it seems that the machines have now seem come also understand anxiety and paranoia. The beat is jittery, the noises harsher and the fast swirling induces an effect that is similar to having vertigo and falling down into a spiral painted bottomless pit.
www.goner-records.com

Nov 18, 2016

The MIAMI DOLPHINS Perlite 7inch EP

   Now that every schmo in who has ever had a band is going around talking about how vinyl is "back", every band in the planet is clamoring to get what would've been on a CD-R "record label" on to venerable format as their artistic statement.
     I don't know how many records the Miami Dolphins (who are actually from Minneapolis and are not dolphins but actual human beings) have released before this one but they're making sure that they get the most out of the package as far as the art side of things are concerned.
     The sleeve itself is jam packed with a bunch of stickers and everything appears to be hand designed. Inside there's a 12 page booklet that only includes the usual credits, lyrics and contact info but things like pen drawings and brain teasers.
     The music itself is a bit of a brain teaser too. The bedroom-core-fi goes full band sound makes one wonder if they're concentrating on putting on an arty psych punk Halloween party for a kindergarten kids and subliminally turn them onto Yoko Ono and Half Japanese records  ("Quail Birth" and "Piling") or, like on "Disconnected" and "Scarlette", they experienced Deerhoof have a nervous breakdown in front of them and they only way they can explain what they saw is by banging it out themselves.
www.fperecs.com

Nov 16, 2016

FUR HELMET S/T 12inch EP

     When space blues crashes back into earth it can make several different sounds. Depends one where it plummeted into and whether it explodes in a fireball or disintegrated into a gazillion pieces.
     In Fur Helmet's case it's a bit of both.
     Comprised of some of the rabble that make up NYC's band's like JJ Doll, Hank Wood & the Hammerheads and Pleasure Industry among others, the band takes the swamp punk of the Scientists and the Gun Club, kick it around until it's pocked with few new dents and ripples while staying fully aware, as the opening track "Ether" shows, that there's plenty of beauty that lies in the forefathers bent dingy grooves and negative attitude boogie .
     Eschewing deliberately lo-fi recordings that plenty of the bands that hone this sort of sound for something more sonic in adds a bit to the grit and grime trip. The swirling blare of "Void Drip" makes the brain think it is actually going to disengage from your skull and acid biker scuzz of "Lunar Tomb" will have looking over your shoulder thinking death wheelers are hot on your trail and wanting to introduce you to Satan.
     Even when the psych trip seems it is entering some type of calm after a storm like on "Curse", the skies still seem like they could start dripping with blood and needles. Things probably ain't gonna get much easier nowadays considering the way the less that 25% of this nation decided a couple weeks back so many are considering other planets. Prepare yourself for a long travel through the galaxy with "Soaked Skull" on the headphones. Just remember though, once out in the nebula the doors back into the land of gravity might be locked when you return.

Nov 14, 2016

December 3rd: Record Night At The Water Tower

     Michigan newspaper network MLive recently sent out a couple of it's people out on an adventure to find the best pizza in the state. They listed a bunch of places to nominate and for people to vote on. The Water Tower Sports Pub in just south of Lexington was not on that initial list. People started picking them as a write in and when all was said and done they ended up getting picked as #10 of the top 12 in the entire Mitten!
     Franck and I have spun records there before and it was a blast. Not only does the pizza rule but they also have a lot of other great eats on the menu along with an awesome choice of Michigan beer on tap.
     Come join us for another night of groovers, shakers and whatever else we pull off our shelves and put into the crates on Saturday, December 3rd.

Nov 13, 2016

Weyerbacher Sunday Morning Stout

     Ahhhh, Sunday mornings. Usually the only morning of the week where I can take my time to do anything that needs to be done as well as pick and choose as to what I want to do.
     Well, for the most part at least. Sunday is usually the day that my usual partner in crime have the same day off so we can do whatever we do together. It's getting to be the busy time of the year for her line of work though so that means it's up to myself to figure out what to do. I already had plans on watching and rooting for the Tiger Cats to beat the Eskimos in the CFL Eastern Semi Finals in the afternoon (what a sloppy game and poor offense game on the Tiger Cats part but that's another post for another blog) but that was still a few hours away.
     The weather was decent this morning. The sun was shining and some yard work needed to be at least considered. My secondary partners in crime, a furry beast of a feline known as the Ripperpotamus, joined me in the back forty to survey what should be done. A beverage to sip on would help with the pondering so I grabbed the Weyerbacher Sunday Morning Stout off the shelf.
     I was hoping Ripper would offer some takes to make my blogging job a little easier but other than giving it a sniff, a "That's pretty cool, bro" look and then expecting some scratching behind the ears he wasn't much help. So here's my take.
     The darkness in color was impenetrable as expected from an imperial stout. The head was study and chocolate malted in color. At first the aromas seemed subdued but after a few minutes of breathing a strong cup of morning coffee, oak smoke and vanilla came to a fore. Still not highly pronounced in the smell but much more noticeable.
     While those flavors were laid back on the nose, they were much more pronounced in the flavor. Very creamy and smooth feeling in the mouth it became all espresso bite and chocolate cake intermingling while the woodsy and vanilla bean essences gave high fives in the background. As the brew adjusted to the air temperature the bourbon barrel aging started to make it presence known adding a hotness to the proceedings. In the finish, molasses and dark chocolate made themselves known.
     After it was finished I considered opening the other one I had stashed away. Then I remembered that I still had a day ahead of me of things to do and maybe delving into another +11% abv brew so early in the day would most likely sidetrack them from getting done. What you've got here is a great take in style, flavor and and attitude of Founders KBS. That second bottle of this will serve as a good fill in when I need such a fix until the 2017 batch of that legendary comes along.
www.weyerbacher.com

Nov 7, 2016

HONEY RADAR Ignore The Bells 7inch EP

     Listening to Honey Radar is like walking through a meadow. And depending on the weather such a thing can be sunny and sublime or cold and itchy. Either way though, their ramshackle and anagogic pop always sounds its of the earth.
     On this record we get both kinds of weather. "Ink Circle" introduces itself with a guitar blare that glares like a blinding sun before settling in a hazy groove that is part blurry basement boogie and icy bedroom psych. Wah-wah oozes fluorescently while Jason Henn's voice smears a mentholated salve over a whispering ghost. Later that day, "Telephone Betty's Aneurysm" gives a farmhand a reason to shirk his field duties to zone on in the meadow and think about Mersybeat country western music.
     The sparse and wobbly choppiness of "Paper Car" has a parched feeling until halfway through when cold clangs condense a crystallized mist. "The Calvin Coolidge Clarion" closes the record with a march that heads out of spring sunset into an autumn evening.
www.chunklet.com

Nov 3, 2016

BAD NOIDS "It's A Doggie Bag World" 7inch EP

     In 2013, Cleveland's Bad Noids was one of the few bands that renewed my faith in hardcore (or whatever the kids are all it this day) with their album Everything From Soup To Dessert. It was bent, twisted and absolutely raged.
     In '14 and '15 not much was heard (at least record wise) from them. Did they rage so hard that it caused them burst into flames and/or vaporize? Well, this three song blaster out confirms that such a thing hasn't happened (yet) but their world of weirdness was off on an adventure or two.
      Some of it time traveling even. The acid punk slobberer "Into The Future" rumbles like it shoul be gurgling out of a biker club house that has members who are hell bent to run the drug trade along the asteroid belts. Subhuman wah-wah guitar heroics battle it out with rock throwing neanderthals over who gets to slither first into a bog of beef tallow, dirty underwear and kerosene.
     Whatever it was though that induced the band to take that psych trip wears off the crash is hard and the hangover harsh. The hundred tiny jackhammers in their brain cause the lash out fast and furiously. "Twelve Years Old" is something like a bunch of 8 years old were given an hour to think up the most punk rock song ever while "My Friend Greg" could be those same 8 year old thinking up a song to play while strapping their big brother's bully friend to the front of a locomotive.
www.feelitrecordshop.com

Oct 29, 2016

TURQUOISE FEELING S/T 12inch EP

Photo courtesy of Turquoise Feeling's Facebook page
     The sounds of the Rust Belt. It's brash but earnest. It's normally a bit of shambles but beneath the racket there's allurement of melodic disharmony. It's the type of sound that is often found being made by people stuck in Midwest cities that are a couple hours drive away from any place "cool" but they don't really care or in towns where there's a state college. Even in the latter instance it's not made by folks who's parents are footing the bill. It's usually guys that have to work two job and schedule any higher education.
     It's the sound of the shaggy and thoughts articulated not through grandiloquent tomes but from folks that'll lend you a smoke and then converse with you about the bullshit in the world around you both. They're the cats who when put on a bill a with some national press darlings, they will play louder and harder, bumming out the Pitchfork readers there to say "I saw them back in..." if the buzz band goes any farther. They'll also get someone who's never seen the before declaring them the best band in town halfway before their set is done.
     While the landslide of rumbling bass and blood drawing guitar scratches of  the records opener "Feverfew" make evoke thoughts of NZ's Flying Nun sound at some sort of mega-unruliness such or the way "Post Partum" could be from early 80's and much more turbulent Athens, GA, Turquoise Feelings are 100% wearing their heart on the frayed flannel sleeve Rust Belt. Them being of the Ohio chapter, noises of other denizens from the Buckeye state creep in and out of their commotion then get bent into a new directive. For instance, both the former and latter above also may prick the eardrums as a Death of Samantha being cranked through car speakers being put to use after being dug out underneath of pile of discarded and vermin ridden tires.
     More closer to their home base, the mangled jangled guitar interplay of "January Sisters In Drag" and "External Oblique" are like the Cheater Slicks getting all bent of out shape on Neil Young & Crazy Horse bootlegs which means can listen to them over and over all day and most likely will. The hyperactivity of "Dreadful Things Done By Girls" and the drunken sing-songy melody got me thinking of Gaunt without really sound like them at all.
     The one thing that all the songs in common here though is that they're all like mini epics. I didn't set a stopwatch or anything, but they all pack what they want to do and say pretty quickly and too the point.
     It's been awhile since I have gone on an ALL OHIO music jag but I think it's time to do one soon and this record is going make it place among some other records from the state I tend to listen to still on a regular basis.
www.heelturnrecords.com