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· 1:Punk Parenthood for the Sleep Deprived
· 2:#330 with Craven Rock
· 3:One Punk’s Guide to Poetry
· 4:#331 with Mike Faloon and Todd Taylor
· 5:#332 with Kurt Morris


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Razorcake #81
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Nights and Days in a Dark Carnival by Craven Rock
Chantey Hook, Underground 7" *Limited Color Vinyl


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Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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HERE KITTY KITTY:
Daddy’s Girl: CD
Let’s pull out some names from history’s past. I hear some Ramones, Sleater Kinney, Ramones, Queers and that old school death rock band, Voodoo Church. Simple, power chord-driven melodies that only back up the magical experience of the band. They assault you with a three female vocal attack that makes the music sweet and infectious. The production has a very live feeling to it. That leads to a more intimate listening experience. I’m not sure if this is their debut, but it was a nice preview for me. The opening track, “How Now” is a great track and the funny cover of Lita Ford’s “Kiss Me Deadly” is a perfect!
–Donofthedead (Lorelei)


HENRY FIAT’S OPEN SORE:
Adulterer Oriented Rock: CD
Unzip the half of your brain that thinks. Huck it out the window. Use the other half and occupy it with rough monkey sex, crayons shoved too far up your nose, bleeding fingers guitar, a slutty love of the Mummies, the Motards, and the Dwarves, the smell of cars burning out, all sliding up the shaky knees of your daiquiri-drunk date. Perfect, no-thinking, funny/blunt (as in "England, That's a Place to Hate," and "Brit Pop Sucks"), bloodshot Swedish garage fest that slows down when they die. Awesome. Think angry dogs, bullwhips, and a dude that carries a mannequin head for self-service, I presume. As subtle as a fist fuck. What's not to love? This is a forty-seven song collection of their singles.
–Todd Taylor (Coldfront)


HENRY FIAT’S OPEN SORE:
Idiota Hyperactiva: CD
The cover is four guys in suits with Mummies-esque masks, one with a whip. My first thought? Lame. Then I found out they were from Sweden and my opinion changed. Why? Hell if I know. I don’t have some sort of Swedish music fetish. It was just okay for Swedes to have masks. This album was recorded in ’98, but we get it in the states now courtesy of Cold Front’s Sin City Series. They’re full of energy, heavily guitar driven, and are catchy without being poppy or anthemic. It just has that balls-out rock that gets me goin’ every time. I hear some early Dwarves and Turbonegro influences in there. I don’t know what they’re saying half of the time, but I sing right along anyway. This is some damn good listening right here.
–Megan Pants (Cold Front)


HATE NO. 3:
Crucified: 7"
Do I like Japanese punk? Fuck ya! This band kicks major ass by playing mid-tempo, metallic Jap-core, crust, and old school. The guitars are strong and abrasive. The drums are heavy and pounding. The musicians sound very accomplished and keep things from getting generic. Paintbox is a good reference point. I need to see a dentist after the swift kick in the teeth that I got.
–Donofthedead (Yoakemae)


GUTTERMOUTH:
Gusto: CD
I fail to see the humor anymore.
–Donofthedead (Epitaph)


GUTTERMOUTH:
Gusto: CD
Holy shit! Sean sent me a Blink 182 CD, expecting me to listen to it. Wait a minute. This says Guttermouth. What the fuck? Is this the same snotty smart-assed punk band I used to listen to about ten years ago? No… can't be, but the packaging says, sure enough, that it is, Mark Adkins & Co. Mark, what are you doing? This shit is terrible. My guess is that you are in the midst of some mid-life crisis and you are realizing that you are too old to pick up teenage girls anymore. So, you catch a glimpse of what Blink 182 is doing and how easy it is to make that kinda inane music and have tons of screaming teenage girls paw all over you. I can't say I'm not jealous in that department, either. Hell, if I had a quarter for every teenage girl I jerked… uh… nevermind. But is it worth giving up your dignity for? Many can argue that question and it looks like you answered it "yes." Well, I wish you guys luck, but I don't plan on listening to anything else you put out if this continues. Just some advice as we part ways – pay attention to your statutory rape laws from state to state. The age of consent varies greatly. If you are looking for the younger ones, let me recommend the southern states. Check out www.sexlaws.org for further info on the topic. Good luck and be careful.
–Toby Tober (Epitaph)


GUNMOLL/FIFTH HOUR HERO:
: Split CD
Wow! I had never heard Fifth Hour Hero before, and it's so damn good! The girl vocals sound a little like Allison from Discount (a compliment!), the riffs are catchy, and the lyrics are just what we punks need to not kill ourselves in the middle of Dubya’s term: “What’s that quivering?/ One day it will come, strongly overcome/Working in shadow, making vibrations.” And then, “We’re everything. We’re giving sense to that masquerade. We’re the children, the women, and the poor. We’re the people of this earth.” Of course, Fifth Hour Hero is from Canada, so maybe they have reason to be a little more optimistic. Or not. Great stuff, though. Gunmoll does the whole Hot Water Music, melodic punk thing, and does it well. Gruff vocals, introspective lyrics, a touch of Jawbreaker, you know the deal. Also really good; but I kept going back to Fifth Hour Hero. If this split were a cereal, it’d be French Toast Crunch. An unexpected treat!
–Maddy (No Idea)


GUITAR GANGSTERS:
Another Day in Pleasantville: CD
The new album from this group of poppy English oi-sters is not as instantly catchy as the last album I heard from them, namely Road to Reality. The hooks don’t seem as obvious this time around and I’m just not enjoying same sense of immediate gratification I did with the other aforementioned disc. I do think this is a temporary setback, though and, with time, I can definitely see this growing on me.
–Jimmy Alvarado (Captain Oi)


GROOVIE GHOULIES:
Go! Stories: CD
Please bear in mind that there is only ONE Groovie Ghoulies album in the universe – the other things you buy every year are just software updates (which is, of course, not to imply that any one Groovie Ghoulies album is more "THE" Ghoulies album than another; the One True Groovie Ghoulies album exists only as a Platonic Ideal, a thought construct that serves as blueprint for that which we experience in the everyday world. Just thought i'd clear that up). That said, let the record show that this is my favorite Ghoulies album of all time for a variety of reasons, one of which is that it's got the best cover (in the top purple wedge, Roach casually maneuvers her lunar module past a rocket ship containing armed, green aliens; in the middle orange wedge, a cheerful red Tyrannosaurus pursues Scampi, who flees across the rugged desert on horseback; and in the bottom blue wedge, an intense purple squid bears down on a scuba-diving Kepi. When YOUR band is able to stave off the assaults of aliens, dinosaurs, and sea monsters and still remain so damn chipper, THEN you can start faulting my logic). Another reason, strange as this may sound, is that it's got the best songs (i actually first heard this at a local record shoppe, and was so taken with the brilliance of the lead-off track, "Let's Do It Again" ["I'm not tired and I'm not bored and I'm not broken and I'm not sore, you ask me what I want? It's more! Let's do it again..."] that, although there were multiple avenues i could have pursued towards the goal of securing a copy without money having to change hands, i bought it on the spot, cash on the barrelhead, 'cause it was so cool [i mean, think about it: Kepi anticipated his own redundancy, acknowledged it, took steps to combat it, then turned it into a positive! Like, high five!]. When i got it home, i decided the record was so great that i wanted my friends to think that i got it as a promo, so i snipped the corner off the album cover. Then, later, i DID get a copy as a promo! I don't know what to make of all that, morally). The entire first side is more or less boss, with peachy backing vocals in "Mess Me Up" (come to think of it, there should be more backing vocals on Groovie Ghoulie records, it'd help fill out the sound. Pop-punk without backing vocals is like pizza without crushed red peppers: It can be done, i guess, but why?), and cool vocal phrasings in the sorta-like-the-Riverdales-song-"I Think About You During the Commercials"-but-way-better "School Is In" compelling me to state that Kepi would be one of the most underrated vocalists in punk rock today if anybody actually bothered to rate him. Now, of course, there is a certain segment of the populace that wonders exactly WHY the world would need a more-or-less G-rated (Kepi does use swear words sometimes to express his GREAT ENTHUSIASM!) hybrid of the Ramones, Misfits, and Riverdales, the tip of my Iceberg of Rebuttal being 1. They're fun and they rock; 2. The band and the band's records never get any worse-sounding regardless of how many times one hears them; and 3. A hundred years from now, everyone reading this is gonna be dust EXCEPT the Ghoulies, because they're freaky undead cartoon characters who will still look twenty-four years old, fit into the same black jeans, and be touring to support their 138th album, 20 Second Century. They're like a cool plastic thing in a landfill: It can be sitting there for an eternity, but all ya gotta do is pull it out and wash the dirt off and it's good as new. Ghoulies are GO-er than ever! BEST SONG TITLE: "Someone Is Always Not Happy" BEST SONG: "The Bay Bridge Club" FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Once my friend booked the Groovie Ghoulies in his club and he didn't have money to make flyers, so i tried to help him out by putting signs up in front of the venue that said "GROOVY GHOULIES TONIGHT!!!" but they were torn down by angry mobs because i misspelled "Groovie."
–Rev. Norb (Stardumb)


GRIMPLE:
Self-titled: CD
Pretty straightforward Gilman Street hardcore. I would’ve been all over this fourteen or fifteen years ago, but these days there’re just too many bands that have gone down this exact road and, frankly, I’ve heard too many of ’em to be impressed.
–Jimmy Alvarado (Prank)


GOONS, THE:
Live at the Black Cat: CD
On the first couple of listens, I wasn't that interested, but something kept me playing it more and more. Sure, there's a big love for Minor Threat, some Negative Approach, and, surprisingly, some early Dicks (mostly in the voice, and not to mention the lead singer looks a hell of a lot like Gary Floyd) but, mostly, what's good about the Goons is they know their limitations, don't try to get too fancy, and end up playing some good straight-ahead, extremely listenable DC-style hardcore with some nice hooks. It doesn't sound like they're playing in a graveyard, hoping for the ghosts of the past to rise up to hootenanny with, but spray painting their own noise on the tombstones. Well weathered, veteran, fun stuff that gets the thumbs up.
–Todd Taylor (Squirrel Heart)


GOOD RIDDANCE:
Cover Ups: CD
I’m assuming that many of these tracks were available elsewhere but is compiled here for your listening pleasure. I know I have many of these songs on their releases and on some comps. Enjoyable for what it is and probably will only appeal to their fans to complete their collection. Covers of Modern English, Insted, Kiss, Battalion of Saints, The Kinks, Chron Gen, The Shangri-Las, Government Issue, The Psychedelic Furs and Black Flag. The punk covers are the best here in my opinion. Russ’s voice doesn’t always hit the mark when he does the new wave covers. If you need an introduction to this band, I would recommend their full lengths.
–Donofthedead (Lorelei)


GODSTOMPER:
Hell’s Grim Tyrant: CD
WAAAAIIIIIIIIIHIHHHHHHH!!!!!! GRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!! HHUUUUHHHHAAAAAHHHH!!!!!! The best thing about grindcore is that, no matter how bad whatever you’re listening to is, you can bet your boots it’ll be over relatively quick.
–Jimmy Alvarado (Enterruption)


GEE STRINGS, THE:
Arrest Me: CD
Jean-Luc at Headline Records convinced me to pick up a copy of this album. He told me that they sounded just like the Avengers, but with something more to it. And he’s right. Like the Avengers, The Gee Strings have really cool female vocals and good melodies. But there is something more to The Gee Strings. I wouldn’t say that they’re better than the Avengers. Just that The Gee Strings have learned how to speed up the mid-tempo, catchy songs. There’s a good variety to the songs, so that, even though all the songs do have a lot in common with each other, listening to the album doesn’t sound like you’re listening to the same song twelve times in a row. And, if you listen to it enough, each song is guaranteed to get stuck in your head for one full day. If you’re thinking that you need to listen to more female-fronted bands, here’s a good place to start.
–Sean Carswell (Dead Beat)


GBH:
Leather, Bristles, Studs and Acne: CD
At long last, a reissue of this legendary band’s greatest work, and all I can say is it’s about friggin’ time. This is it, kiddos, their finest hour. While the work that followed was by no means terrible, this is GBH at their best, a standard they have often come damn close to but have not quite surpassed over the years. Compiled on this beautiful hunk of plastic are the Leather Bristles, Studs and Acne mini-LP, the Sick Boy EP and the No Survivors EP and every song here, from the opener “Race Against Time,” through “Lycanthropy” past “Self Destruct” and to the closer “Am I Dead Yet,” is a classic. To sweeten the deal, they’ve included the original record’s “hidden” track, “Alcohol,” which makes its digital debut here. So mandatory it ain’t funny.
–Jimmy Alvarado (Captain Oi)


GAY, THE:
Self-titled: CDEP
Ten minutes and thirteen seconds divided into three songs of such excruciatingly banal, drippy indy rock that you'll want to pull your own head off and hurl it at the speakers until the bad noise goes away or you bleed to death. Everything you've ever hated about college radio boiled down to its horrible essence and stamped onto this disc belched up from a bowel of hell I don't even want to think about. God save us.
–aphid (Mint)


GARLIC:
The Murky World of Seats: CD
Peppy, quirky college pop. Songs are well written, even engaging in some spots, and the singer reminds me at times of Neil Young, but there’s nothing here I would call crucial.
–Jimmy Alvarado (www.bellaunion.com)


FROM SAFETY TO WHERE:
Irreversible Trend: CD
Since At the Drive-In is gone, this might do.
–Donofthedead (Radical)


FLIP TOPS, THE:
All Worked Up: CD
I haven’t stopped listening to this since it came in the mail. Everything about this album is spot-on. Todd says it sounds like a slower Candy Snatchers without operatic vocals. I hear Dead Boys in the guitar, but only on certain songs. Some of their lyrics are pretty dumb, though: “Makes me drink until I’m drunk and then I’m wasted… wasted.” Heavily rock’n'roll influenced. Helluva good record here.
–Megan Pants (Rip Off)


FLEAS & LICE/RESTARTS:
: Split CD
Fleas: They take their musical and lyrical cues from bands like Broken Bones and Varukers, with loud, slightly metallic guitars and rants about the evils of the system. A nice addition to the spiky, dyed and dirty subgenre of bands. Restarts: More metal in sound, but they pretty much run along the same lines as Fleas and Lice. Lotsa perky, spiky hair in the poorly reproduced pics. Not bad.
–Jimmy Alvarado (Rejected)


FLASH BASTARD:
Bastard Radio: CD
Catchy, candy ass pretty boy party rock. It just so happens that catchy, candy ass pretty boy party rock rubs me in all the wrong ways. I'd bet the farm that these guys want to be the next Good Charlotte and that alone should convey to you the degree of suckage happening here.
–aphid (Longshot Music)


FIVE DAY MESSIAH:
New Rock Regime: CD
NOTICE TO BANDS THAT WANT TO BE REVIEWED: If you decide to make a stupid joke song that sounds nothing like the rest of your music, make it really short if possible, but if nothing else, do NOT put it first on your album. The first track was so lame and horrible that I almost took out the CD and threw it away, knowing it would have no resale value and that nobody I know would like it... but wait! The rest of the songs are... real! Reminds me of the art punk I see live in converted loft spaces with DIY shows with lots of metal influence. Screamy bike punk stuff! Wow! These guys would have made a really great CD if they didn't ruin it with that annoying first track that I would have to fast forward to listen to this album ever again. Imagine for your birthday, your friends baked you the best tasting cake ever, it just has dog doo for decoration. I would likely endorse these guys live, other releases by them, or a version of this album in reverse order.
–rich (Not Bad)


FIRST GRADE CRUSH:
Our Time Down Here: CD
The press release says they’ve been compared to D4 and RFTC. I plan to hunt down the people who said those things and hurt them. And not nice like last time, either. I will happily admit that this band is quite reminiscent of Fishbone, Less Than Jake and, in Dickie’s less gruff moments, the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. From this, you should infer vaguely punk-like guitar-driven music, a horn section and a heavy ska influence. You can also infer anything else you like, because this record does fuck all for me.
–Puckett (Jump Up)


F-HOLE:
Self-titled: 7" EP
I feel like a fuck hole for making it to the second song.
–Megan Pants (F-Hole)


FARSE:
Boxing Clever: CD
Ska is what they are going to be labeled as, but this band is definitely presenting more to the listener. Ska, two-tone, punk, dub, metal, reggae, new wave and rock are all incorporated to keep the songs individual here. The finished product is an interesting melodic blend that keeps this listener intrigued. The vocalist is one strong tongue twister when he belts out his lyrics. The guitars are recorded superbly and can start off clean and turn at a moments notice into a fierce metal sound. I truly enjoyed this and hope others will too.
–Donofthedead (Moon Ska Europe)


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