Showing posts with label Feel It. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Feel It. Show all posts

Nov 14, 2019

POWER "The Fool" 7inch

Mullets. Even though they're back (and from what I gather not in even a semi-ironic way in most cases) it seems they never really went away in Australia.

I have never seen a photo of Melbourne band Power so I can't confirm if any of them sport a mullet but if even one of them does, I assume that it is a greasy, burly and flowing one worn loud and proud. A visual of such comes right into focus while this latest single from 'em rotates across the turntable. "The Fool" smashes all three Stooges against a brick wall and marvels at the carnage. They then chug a quart of used motor oil each as a toast in congratulations.


Teetering between a seedy brown weed smoking boogie and a post-apocalyptic dirtbag brawl conceived in the NWOHM era, "Give It All To Me" is all about getting some hot but crazy witches to perform all kindsa weird hexes.

Get the volts at Feel It Records

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Oct 19, 2019

SLUMP Flashbacks from Black Dust Country LP

In the most recent Smashin' Transistors podcast I make a mention about coming home from work, putting a record on, turning it up loud and stepping out to my yard for a moment which led to my old biker neighbor walking over to me and wanting to strike up a conversation with me about the dangers of really hard drugs.

Now, my neighbor strikes up conversations with me semi often. They're usually about how he loves Bud Light in a bottle, how much higher he can lift his truck up and still keep it street legal and how the area's classic rock station needs to play Montrose's "Bad Motor Scooter" more often (and I gotta say I agree with that at least.) I think what inspired him to strike up this particular conversation though was because of the record he could hear seeping out the windows of my house. That record was Flashbacks from Black Dust Country, the debut LP from Richmond, Virginia's Slump.

The universe which modern "psych-punk" resides is can be a tricky one to navigate. For every combo that does the aural brain warp splendidly and twisted there's way many more that seem to be simulating a freak trip that they've got from 2nd hand tales instead of though personal experience, making the voyage a bit of a yawn. Such is not the case with this record though.

The immediate oscillations of the album's opening track, "No Utopia", is appropriately titled for these times as it's whirling is not of some floating and easy-going sort. There's more like zaps from a taser gun and as the song swells, the voltage increases, rendering body parts to go rigid or to flail in jerky and disturbing manners.


Beneath layers of echo, the vocals become another element of the auditory occurrences, but the sentiment burns bright like a fireball on "Desire Death Drifter" and the mood as obvious as a rust drill bit plunging at a methodologically crawl into the forehead like "Sensory Cocoon."


Because of the cosmic wanderings from gurgling Moogs, some driving, downstroked guitars and a thread of sinisterness that runs through every sound here, bandying around Hawkwind's name does pop up but Slump do not sound the types that would be all into having a crowd of hirsute stoners covered in body paint and doing some noodly, interpretive dance surrounding them. If the album's closer, the seven plus minute "Trip Sitter" gives a vibe that they'd rather douse them all in gasoline, throw a match and watch it all turn to ash while jettisoning themselves away from this planet.

Set fire to a hippie at Feel It Records
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Jul 22, 2019

CEMENT SHOES Too LP


Last year, Richmond, Va.'s Cement Shoes bestowed their debut 7inch on the punk rock world. For many, it was quite a rager. It was probably a headscratcher to many too. Incorrigible hardcore circa say 1983 walks into a circa the same year high school autoshop class where some greasy long hairs are debating the magic of Bondo and how rippin' some Foghat song sounds blasting over the Kraco speakers they just mounted in the trunk of their '76 Cutlass.

Being a high school student of that particular time and space, the story would have, no matter how much I would root for them, would have not ended well for the punk rockers. Hell, the legends would probably still be lingering about greasy, dirty first flying and the sound of 100 pair of tan Dingo boots stomping and kicking to this day.

On this, the band's debut LP, like that single, such did not happen though. Instead, they joined together to form a maniacal force of early frenzied hardcore, guttural black metal growls and wrathful boogie.

The count off of the record's opener, "Unite The Right In Hell", may give the listener a sense of  Ramones-ish familiarity. That stops right as the "4" is shouted as a barrage of descending guitar chords drill through the skull and then down through earth to it's molten burning core, leaving the subject matter at hand where they belong for eternity rather propping up and hiding behind a bullshit image of Jesus that many a person have molded into a reflection of their true rotten selves here on earth.


While a similar thread (and sentiment) runs through songs such as how "Satanic Soul Picnic" inexorably tempo jackhammers but give space to a bong rippin' guitar solo and the absolute dervish that's "How It Is", no human can't survive on smashing and crashing alone. The diet here also consists of meat grinder funk stabs with "Mine Mine Mine" and, in the case of "Falling Man", resembling biker rock constantly battling a severe case of night terrors.

Swim with the fishes at Feel It Records
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May 1, 2019

The COWBOYS The Bottom Of A Rotten Flower LP


Some albums win you over immediately. There are also that take a bit of absorbing before their goodness is fully realized. Then those rare birds that have both going on. They knock you over on their first spin and each and every one after that, more and more they become even better.

The latest LP from Indiana's Cowboys, The Bottom Of A Rotten Flower, is one of those kinds of records to me.

The candy-coated roar of songs like the album's opener "Open Sores" with its bop in Day-Glo beat, the clomp-clomp-clomp stomp of "The Second Shortcoming Of Christ" and how the anthemic chords of "Pie In My Eye" gets fist pumping in a celebration of triumphs of the forlorn are all akin to something like the Buzzcocks and Cheap Trick coiling around each other. They then form a pop serpent which strikes an infectious bite onto all that are curious.

Unlike vocals that are the dead poet obsessed bray of the former or often almost falsetto bluster of the latter though, singer Keith Harman delivers them in a way that is one part hayseed, one part hustler and a whole lots of heart.





If the band had stuck with this formula of cleverly crafted and concise songs (most of them run around no more than the two minute mark here), it would be a record full of charmers but its when they branch out from that proven winner formula where this record shines even brighter.

The vintage jangle and mood of "Take My Flower And Run" is like a Buddy Holly song chromed for the jet age (minus any of the trying too hard posing presented by so many 50's cosplayers), "Female Behavior Book" could very well be something from the Kinks Face To Face catapulted into the right now and the swirly new wave organs on "Some Things Never Change" should be playing on carousels at all fairs across the USA this summer.



Counterbalance it with flat out rockers like "Red-headed Girlfriend" and you may understand why I am already declaring this one of the definite best in a year that is still young.
  Get pollinated at Feel It Records

Mar 8, 2019

FRIED EGG Square One LP


A feeling of motion sickness. One that comes from moving at different and always temperamental paces.

Fried Egg's latest is hardcore punk that causes a wooziness but it's not strictly from a velocity that has been the historically first impression many associate with such a tag.  Often, things here, like the way "Transient" moves like a spider walking across your face and how "Grown Fat" undulates, are a   slither that's choreographed by anxiety and refusing for the medication to take hold.




Often times on this record as the tension gets wound tighter and tighter, what seems as knuckle-dragging lumbering at first gets punctuated by unexpected and blinding blows. Other times, like with the immediate and fiery rocket blasts of "Confidence" and "Apraxia" things just get straight to the point.




Being completely lock into wiry grooves the band makes nods to punk rock forebearers (be it intentionally or subliminally) on tracks like "Why Bother" and "Fatalist" but they're in a way that they succeed far beyond something than merely emulating precious and silly nostalgia.

Make it sunny side DOWN at Feel It Records

Jan 26, 2019

VANILLA POPPERS "I Like Your Band" 7inch

After spending a few years in a notch of the USA's Rust Belt, Vanilla Poppers hazan headed back to her home in Melbourne, Australia. Then, most of the band pulled up their Cleveland stakes and followed her there.

The change of hemisphere hasn't simmer downed furor they dish out. In fact, it much more heaping. Opening with a statement such as "Get Away From Me" may seem like a blur at first its sentiment is obvious. There's no time for niceties. It's time to slash and smash.



The hardcore splatter that served as the backbone seems a bit more curved and wiggly than on their previous records. Those durable rock riffs that have been pumped into brains since the dawn of AOR and implanted themselves deep into the some of the blasts in the bands past are given a harsher lashing too.

The former is the the way "A Stranger" festers itself into a instant frenzy. The latter it's the blown up boogie licks on "I Like Your Band." They shine like the chrome of some stoner dad's '73 Ranchero there.

Get clobbered at Feel It records

Dec 26, 2018

U-NIX Nuke Portland 12inch EP

As I grow older and move a little slower (sounds like a corny country song, huh?) I find that sound as motivational fuel has become much more effective.

As a youngster, pretty much anything with a snappy tempo could fire me up for facing any day. Now being (as my chillun' call me when I am outside of earshot) grizzled, I need something with a bit more higher octane to help me blast off into another day of earning my paycheck.

Lately, the thing that I've been blasting a full volume before heading out the door each morning is this debut slab from Portland's U-Nix.

A whirlwind of raging hardcore blasts off every face within the reach of this record. Meant to be played at 45, some may find themselves doublechecking playing at that speed due to how berserk of a sound scene this slab rips at some moments. I, for one, thought I had the speed cranked to 78 even. Thing is though, my turntable doesn't offer that option. Slowing it down to 33 was interesting though as it then sounded like a sounder of swine way irritated that supper had still had not been served.

That is really here nor there though, right?

It's a sound galvanized by the lacerating guitar slashes from John formerly of NASA Space Universe. The record first drill its way up from some molten and enraged place in deep earth with "Landlord." Once it surfaces, the rhythm section rolls through like a tornado, battering everything it is path while a bedlamite orates acerbity for most things that surround it.



Consider it just a little prep test though, because it's followed by the longest track on the record. Sure, "Society's Victim II" still only clocks in at a minute and a half, but it's a minute and a half of dizzying jolts with an intricacy that causes just as many jaws dropping in awe as it does making people wanting to bash into each other.



You'll be glad that such prep was done too as the relentless fits of convulsions from a possessed surf riff on "Hobby" and the neck-snapping stops that happen on "Punitive" are not for an abecedarian sort.



It's a twisted and discomforting record and perhaps even framing it as a hardcore record is lazy. For instance, there's a way tracks like "Liberal Hardcore" are sharp needle jabs into the psyche and make basking in disorientation a most enjoyable way to spend fleeting moments.

Get the doses of radiation at Feel It records

Oct 1, 2018

STIFF LOVE "Attitudes" 7inch

The Stiff Love single from earlier this year was one of those kinds of records that was axiomatic in its pursuit of real punk rock. This go 'round things are even a bit more raucous.

A rowdy piece 60's teenage rage immersed punk, "Attitudes" rattles quite wiggly. It's greasy clobbering that serves up that just a simple beat. Teeth gnashed and claws out it rips and tears things to bloody raw bits.


The flip, "Out Of Control" is like something from a budget beach movie. Like Z-grade one shot under a full moon at midnight. It howls at the moon in vivid Cramps amp'd gore.

 Adjust your mien at Feel It

Sep 5, 2018

PIOUS FAULTS Old Thread LP


At another location where I do a nightly music column (which is usually short and quick as far as me pontificating compared to here), I recently said that Brisbane's Australia's Pious Faults take "punk rock's hardcore form and strip it down to the rawest minimum."

While as a lure to get some to lend the band and ear it's a quick impression posing as a fair assessment but there's more to this record than just speed and rage. Any thrashing about becomes paroxysmal movements immediately once "Cope" starts things. The convulsively twitching dynamism of it and tracks like "Field" sets a tone for the addled expedition the rest of the record brings.



Tinges of late period Black Flag (I'm talking 'round 85/86. Not whatever that thing was called that Ginn put together to tour with a few years) seem to seep in on "Worship The Surface I" and "Not Me." The difference is that the jagged guitar lines and tempo of the former seems they may have more of Beefheart/Birthday Party thing on kicking holes in the brain than whatever Sonny Sharrock lick Ginn thought was a good idea to do a squishy wet noodle jazz metal emulation of over and over again while the latter takes a back to the garage basics swing, kicking the speed back up instead of making it another mud trawl.


Not stuck to one piece of pavement and not just blazing as fast as they can in a straight line, the weaving and bouncing on this record is like getting hits of fresh air courtesy of a kick in the chest.
Question your virtue at Feel It Records

Aug 17, 2018

CEMENT SHOES A Peace Product of the USA 7inch


I don't know if there's some sort of pipeline that runs between upstate New York and the Virginia coast. If there is though, it is something miasmic flowing through. The band Brown Sugar were from the former and Fried Egg the latter. Both sounded as if they led first era hardcore down some knurled path of their own but both also then went and showed it where the LSD trees grow.

A dizzying thrash of velocity that wobbled as much as it stomped all slathered in a sonic sort of feedback, both managed to create something absorbing from what is often hackneyed and cliche. Malcontents from both groups co-conspire as Cement Shoes.

Sounding like an MC5 or Stooges riff whittled down a jagged shiv after a night of biting nails and dodging tweakers, "Fruity Funhouse" is all tangled like someone threw mile long strands of wet seaweed into the pit. A mist of green slime hangs in the air.



"I Saw The Devil Again (Last Night)" presses the pedal to the metal. A bit of speed metal perhaps but mostly in an elongated trip where the Dwarves Blood, Guts and Pussy oozes puss over some dark and forgotten Randy Holden riff while a landscape of a burning city passes by in a blur outside the window.

Swim with the fish at Feel It records

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.
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