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No Idea Records

Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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DESTRUCTORS, THE:
11.11.11-In Memoriam: CD
These long-running U.K. punkers sure are prolific. I think they almost have as many records as the UK Subs. This is a record celebrating National Metal Day on VH1. Uh, actually it is for Remembrance Day. Superbly recorded and well played, there are two covers on here. I’m assuming the rest are originals. “We Need You” sounds like a lost Sex Pistols tune. “The Misery in Me” is a rollicking barnburner. “Body Bags” also rounds out this batch nicely. Hopefully, they will tour the U.S. at some point. –Sean Koepenick (Rowdy Farrago)


DERKS, THE:
Slack Jawed Hussies: 7"
Four mid-tempo punk rock songs with a somewhat standard sound to them, although I really, really, really like the last song, “Truck,” which had a bit of a country feel to it musically and lyrically. The other three songs are good, but not holy-shit-you’ve-got-to-hear-this-record-good. Overall, the record rocks, but it a very familiar way—kind of like the Zero Boys played at a slightly slower tempo. –The Lord Kveldulfr (No label listed)


DEMONI:
Dawn of Demoni: CD
I wonder why so many rockabilly or psychobilly bands end up going the horror route? Don’t get me wrong, I like the genre for the most part, and I love horror... It just seems like it is truly done to death. Demoni do it just fine, but it has trouble holding my interest. –Ty Stranglehold (P.I.G.)


DEHUMANIZERS WITH PAMELA DES BARRES:
Self-titled: 7"
Longstanding weirdo experimental punks the Dehumanizers teamed up with infamous groupie/GTO member Pamela Des Barres for this intentionally irritating, pretentious jumble of a single. Des Barres does rhythmic spoken word over the odd musical rumblings of the Dehumanizers. Both songs are truly bizarre and interesting, but only in that they’re such gleeful train wrecks. I’d much rather read one of Des Barres’ books or check out earlier Dehumanizers records than suffer through this tripe again, but you can’t fault them for trying. What a mess! –Art Ettinger (P.I.G., myspace.com/portnowintertainmentgroup)


DBCR:
Let Them Eat Bikes: 7"
The A side is a vaguely melodic punk number with rock beats and a No Idea Records-sounding vibe. The B side is a little bit more up my alley; a slower, sort of creepy Dead Kennedys style track with vocals that remind me a lot of Gary Floyd of the Dicks, though nowhere near as confrontational. The band is catchy enough that I could see it getting big with the same crowd that’s really into stuff like Off With Their Heads, but isn’t necessarily my cup of tea. That being said, the record does sit a lot better with me after a few listens. –Ian Wise (Self-released)


DAN P. AND THE BRICKS:
Watch Where You Walk: CD
I’m pretty sure Dan Potthast is a big name in ska, but I don’t really know anything about ska, other than I wondered if those kids who dressed up like rude boys (and girls) in high school did that all the time. I want to call this kind of folky, but again, I don’t really know much about ska. It mostly just feels lighter than say, The Toasters. Maybe I’d call it post-ska (instead of post-hardcore). Though, I can say that it’s good spring/summertime barbecue music. –Joe Evans III (Asian Man)


CULTURE KIDS:
Self-titled: Cassette
Tapping into a bevy of classic American influences, San Francisco’s Culture Kids kick, scream, and speed their way through fifteen tracks of raw, snotty hardcore punk. It’s a battle royale between early FYP vs. Fish Sticks with This Is Boston, Not L.A. as the background score is the only kind of picture I can paint for you. It’s funny, though. The only other band that is doing it right (like this) is School Jerks. The rest of you, learn! –Juan Espinosa (Burger)


CRUSADES:
The Sun Is Down and the Night Is Riding In: CD/LP
Man, I wish I didn’t have such a shitty memory, otherwise I could tell you a bunch of bands that Crusades sound like. But they’re all good bands—bands you like and are catchy with some emotionally tinged vocals that drive you inside your head and thoughts. However, Crusades still retain a driving, yet melodic pop punk sound with three vocalists who all bring their own depth to the music, making it unique despite the generic nature that many might attach to the pop punk genre. A couple suggestions to them, though: 1) the snare seems to be the dominant sound from the drums. It’s not real diverse and should probably have been mixed down a bit. 2) Make your album longer! Ten songs in twenty-five minutes aren’t enough! (The LP has ten songs; the CD has four additional tunes.) Most of the songs seemed to be over just when I started to get into them. I want more Crusades! (The band, not literal religious crusades.) –Kurt Morris (It’s Alive)


CRISIS HOTLINES:
Don’t Wanna Go to No Jail: 7” EP
Tuneful punk rock with no real theme, schtick, or genre; the record cover is red, blue, and purple but the vinyl and label are yellow, so I don’t really even know what colors they like best. A number of the songs are at least semi-catchy ((the title track chief amongst them; “Explorers” to a lesser extent)), but the impact of said semi-catchiness is occasionally blunted by odd phrasing and stresses on weird syllables, and occasional explosive epic drum fills that don’t so much add to the listenerly experience as have me holding my breath hoping the guy comes out of them okay. I think the spring-wound energy of the drums reminds me of Heart Attack or the Busy Signals or Really Red or someone, but I’ll have to get back to you on that. The baritone sax that comes in towards the end of “Astral Projection” is as unexpected as it is awesome. I think i will call this particular crisis hotline and request more sax next time around. BEST SONG: “Astral Projection” BEST SONG TITLE: “Astral Projection” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: The guitar player is 9’4”. –Rev. Norb (Eradicator)


CRIPPLED FOX / LEI DO CAO:
Split: 7”
Here’s a bandanna skate thrash split that will tear your eyes out. Crippled Fox from Hungary are up first. No-nonsense early crossover stuff that is done properly. Breakneck speed is the order of the day and they serve it up piping hot. On the flip we have Brazilians Lei Do Cão who have more of a mid-paced, Agnostic Front kind of delivery. Of the two, I dig the Hungarians a bit more, but both bands are doing a great job here. Pull that headband low, flip your brim, and drop in! –Ty Stranglehold (suburbanwhitetrashrecords.com)


COBRA SKULLS:
Agitations: CD
Loud and shiny rock, quickly paced with vocals that have just a hint of a growl that’s been mostly buffed over. Too much polish, not enough scruff for me. –Candice Tobin (Fat Wreck)


CITY MOUSE:
Self-titled: 7"
Pretty solid pop punk single with a little emo for good measure. Now, when I say emo, I mean something like Gameface, which is basically just pop punk, when it comes down to it. It’s Alive is generally good, as far as I have heard, and this is another good release. –Mike Frame (It’s Alive)


CHICKS WHO LOVE GUNS:
Stutter: CDEP
It takes some huevos to adopt a name jacked from a short within a Tarantino flick, primarily because both the name and its origin prejudices the listener to expect something, at worst, a bit off the beaten path and, at best, something wholly off the deep end. In this case, there are hints at both and results achieving neither. While one can hear the influence of gadflies like the Birthday Party buried here and there, both the arrangements and performances sound way too reined in to be effective, leaving one feeling like they’re a bit detached and maybe only half-committed to the whole endeavor. There’s potential here that might be kicked loose with a marathon listening session chock full of early Swans, Scientists, and maybe even a dash of X (the Australian band), but this here just ain’t quite where it should be on the kick-ass scale. –Jimmy Alvarado (Chicks Who Love Guns, myspace.com/chickswholoveguns)


CHESTY MALONE AND THE SLICE ‘EM UPS:
Torture Rock: CD
There a lot of songs on here about blood, zombies, and body parts. The music is certainly loud and reckless. But horror rock is just not my bag. –Sean Koepenick (Wrecked)


CHEETO CHAMP:
Gets the Giggles: CD
Kind of reminds me of a lady vocal Hot New Mexicans, where it’s kind of poppy with a bit of soul to it. It’s pretty cutesy—in a genuine way—not “cutesy.” You know, the kind that makes you smile instead of roll your eyes (the fact that they’re not afraid to jump into thrash-speed at a moments notice doesn’t hurt). I’m eager to see where they go down the line. –Joe Evans III (Lauren / Bite The Cactus)


CARTE DE VISITE:
Erman EP: Cassette
This tape offers five songs of mostly instrumental rock, ranging from a lounge-influenced opener to a closing track with an intricate guitar melody that provides the highlight of the songs here. The vocals on two songs seem to detract from the songs more than contribute, but even the instrumental songs leave something to be desired. Some of the guitar work is quite nice though, just not nice enough for me to ever recommend this to anyone. –Mark Twistworthy (Dingle, dinglerecords.bigcartel.com)


CARRY THE TORCH / SIGNS OF HOPE:
Split: 7"
I was stoked when this 7” arrived, thinking this was a split with the old Rhode Island hardcore band Carry The Torch (whose members were later in bands like Third Death, Verse, and Soul Control). While disappointed to find out this was not in fact the same band, the two songs on their half of the split were decent, calling to mind ‘90s and early ‘00s melodic hardcore bands like Stretch Arm Strong. The song “Arches and Angles” was the stronger of the two, with solid hooks and a melodic interlude featuring “hardcore talking voice” over it. The Signs Of Hope half of the split was a bit more melodic than I’m used to hearing from them, but had the usual chugging breakdowns. Overall, neither side of this split really did anything for me. –Paul J. Comeau (Goodwill, goodwillrecords.net)


CAROLEE:
EP1: 12"
Carolee plays poppy post hardcore with a mid-’90s Ashes/Samuel/Quicksand feel. The woman singing is reserved and gets buried by the loud and incessant axe-noodling. I’ll mark this as a band to watch, since this “EP1” seems to be their first release, and the only kinks are things that can be worked out quickly. –Guest Contributor (12XU)


BURNT CROSS:
Break the Law Not the Poor: EP
Hell yes! Always glad to get my hands on a new Burnt Cross record. Anytime I get one, it’s the first record I put on the turntable when I get home. This one is no exception. Four songs and all of them are quality listening. Their cover of The Apostles’ “Mob Violence” is a cruncher. The opener, “Ian Tomlinson,” is rife with tension due to the time changes, and spoken word shifting to singing then shifting back. The female vocals on “They’ve Got the Power” reminds me of Media Children, only I don’t cringe listening to Burnt Cross. Definitely a timely record—with the subject matter covered, as well as the title of this record. Let this record be your soundtrack when you glue the locks of the banks. –Matt Average (Loud Punk, loudpunk.com)


BURNING SONS:
Reduced to Equality: 12"
Wow, this is on Mystic Records, the label responsible for many super generic hardcore records in the ‘80s! I had no idea that Mystic was an active label again. That said, Burning Sons from Milwaukee seem to be a perfect fit for the label. This 12” EP offers seven songs of solid but somewhat generic punk/hardcore. The vocalist reminds me of Mike Dean on Animosity-era Corrosion Of Conformity at times, but, musically, the band is far less aggressive than COC, culling from more standard ‘80s punk hardcore influences to make up their sound. It’s a decent record, but like many of the records that Mystic put out twenty-plus years ago, there’s nothing here to make this 12” stand out among its peers. –Mark Twistworthy (Mystic, mysticrecordshq.com)


BRASSKNUCKLE BOYS:
Appalachian Bastard: CD
With a name like Brassknuckle Boys, I was ready for the usual round of “oi! oi! up from the streets” kind of stuff, and, sure, it’s there to an extent, but as the disc continued I started to realize a couple of things. These songs have emotion. They’re well written. The singer has an amazing voice. Suddenly it hit me that they sound a lot like Off With Their Heads... if OWTH was a street punk band. It’s great! –Ty Stranglehold (brassknuckleboys.org)


BRASSKNUCKLE BOYS:
Appalachian Bastard: CD
This is solid, reliable street punk that will show you a good time if you’re into it. It’s gruff and yet manages to wind some fun around guitar solos and catchy melodies. There are limitations to the sound, and Appalachian Bastard runs a bit long at twenty-six tracks. This is worth picking up, but I believe Brassknuckle Boys to be best served in chunks of infectious, rough energy. –Candice Tobin (Fighting Poor)


BOMBAY SWEETS, THE:
Self-titled: CD
Sweet, surfy, deceptively simple melodies wrapped in the warm echoes of reverb. The rockabilly undertones and volcanic buildup add drama and mystery into an already deeply layered atmosphere. It makes me wanna dance and brood in the corner with a cigarette at the same time. I don’t even smoke. If I were some sort of dictator, I’d demand everyone download the free demo posted on the band’s website or suffer severe consequences. But hey, it’s your life. If you choose to live it without this beautiful, moody music, I can only be sad for you. –Candice Tobin (Phantom Form)


BLACK SPARROW PRESS:
Half-Ass Romance: LP
So this album came with instructions: get drunk, listen to the record. Don’t need to tell me twice. While I’ve played this album from these San Pedro boys both sober and inebriated, booze isn’t necessary to make me want to up and sing with them. Splicing garage and folk punk, BSP has come a long way from using buckets as drum kits a few years back. Notes from an organ, violin, and even a lap steel are sprinkled throughout. The slightly out of synch gang vocals bring a live recording quality to their tracks, while “Get Low” could easily become the closing song of punk venues nationwide. Great record with a live show feel and I love the color-by-numbers poster! Recommended. –Kristen K (45RPM, calimucho.net)


BLACK PUSSY:
On Blonde: CD
Horrible band name, worse music. Sounds like Pussy Galore meets Eagles Of Death Metal. Could not be much worse. –Mike Frame (Made In China)


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·OVERLORD
·ACROBRATS, THE
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·VARIOUS ARTISTS
·WAYWARD, THE
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·A Tale of Three Cities: Rio de Janeiro, Montevideo, and Buenos Aires
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·GUNMOLL


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