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No Idea Records

Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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VARANT MAJARIAN/ ABANDON ALL HOPE/ THE SUBJECTS:
3-Way Split: CD
Varant: A hardcore band making valid points left and right with liberal doses of cynicism. The song titles are hilarious. Abandon: decent mid-tempo hardcore, but the metal in the guitars knocks ‘em a rung or two down the “crucial” ladder. The Subjects: Sorry, but I really can’t take seriously a band that thanks “punk rock junkies, fast cars, fast women and Guinness beer.” Varant wins by a landslide. –jimmy (Chicken Head)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Hardcore from the Early Days: CD
A collection of tunes from three old Connecticut hardcore bands. Target Cells: Eleven tracks from their Cerebral Hemorrhage cassette, recorded in 1983. Mid-tempo hardcore, pretty typical for its time, which should not be taken as an insult. White Pigs: Remember there being a big to-do about their name and whether they were on a racist kick like contemporaries White Pride, but with the exception of the word “spic” in one song, they’re devoid of the usual “I hate...” dogma you find with those bands. Judging solely from the remaining lyrical content, I’m willing to bet they included that word merely to ruffle the feathers of the more uptight factions of the almighty “scene,” ‘cause it ain’t the word they use on the track. Either way, you get seven blasts of obnoxious hardcore from the first of what would be many releases. Chronic Disorder: rare tracks from this band’s first couple of 7-inch EPs and a couple of live tracks recorded at CBGB. Edgy hardcore with a noticeably Proletariat bent is the order of the day on their seven tracks. Being old enough to remember when all this stuff first came out, I’d have to say that, overall, this was a very satisfying trip down memory lane. Recommended. –jimmy (Coldsweat)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Go-Kart MP300 Raceway: 2X CD
This is a label sampler that also includes what seems like every band under the sun: a hundred and fifty bands, three hundred songs. Only draw back is sound quality, since this is recorded in MP3 format. If you don’t understand, this is compressed digital, which means that the songs are four times smaller in file size. That is how so much can be crammed into these two CDs. What you get in quantity, you lose in fidelity. I’m sure most or all will not notice the difference, since you are either greedy and just want more. But I notice those things and my anal tendencies make it a pet peeve at times. I can’t see anyone wouldn’t be able to find something they like on this release. There is so much on here. I think the thing is cheap, so there is no danger of wasting your money. There is a chance that you will find your next favorite band. –don (Go-Kart)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Broken Bonez: CD
Nothing to do with the legendary hardcore band of the same name, this is a comp of bands I’m assuming are from the El Paso area. A grand total of one track here managed to capture my attention – Radio La Chusma’s “Thoughts of You” – which reminded me of an acoustic Quinto Sol without all the “kill the white man” rhetoric. The remaining stuff here was demo recordings of fairly stereotypical backyard punk and rockabilly. –jimmy (www.brokenbonezrecords.com)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Beer City Records Presents Counter Attack: CD
Mike from Beer City must be in his 30s. All the current stuff he is putting out is stuff from my childhood. Bands like MDC, DRI, Toxic Reasons, and Verbal Abuse were regular listening for me in high school. Current bands like Beer Zone, The Werent, Oppressed Logic, Very Metal and Red Flag 77 play like they could have been bands from yesteryear. He throws in Humungus, which is Nikki Sicki from Verbal Abuse, which a friend of mine originally was supposed to release. I hate the term, but Mike Beer is old school and his colors are blatantly on his sleeve. I have no hate for the guy because I have picked up a few reissues because it’s so much easier burning songs off a CD than LP on to my Ipod. So, all in all, this a label sampler. It could also be a sample of his record collection that he wants the kids to check out after they get over being a Blink 182 fan. –don (Beer City)


TOWERS OF HANOI:
self-titled: CDEP
At best, they remind me of Seaweed, when the dude’s singing and the guitars are swinging. But there are quite a few hurdles. Poetry jam rock has never been a friend of mine. It comes from going to school with hippies. I just don’t dig it. It makes me irritable because if I truly cared how well people played their instruments, I’d listen to classical music. I crave tight, quick song structures. Or drugs, lots of drugs, then you run the possibility of playing almost anything short of the Grateful Dead near me before I lunge for the stereo. So, the Towers of Hanoi play well, but they play songs I’m not really interested in. The lady who does most of the singing, sounds melodramatic and swoony. I wish them no ill-will, I just don’t dig it. As a bit of trivia: Jon, the drummer used to be in Florida band, The Y. Absolutely no musical overlap between the two bands.  –todd (Barracuda Sound)


THUMBS UP!:
Destroy: CDEP
Loud, fast, angry thrashy punk fucking rock! Eight songs, eleven minutes. Very similar sounding in many ways to F-Minus (without any female vocals) and every bit as good as them. –toby (Room 13)


THRILLS:
N.A.F.I.T.C.: CD
If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent many a sleepless night, tossing and turning, wondering what sort of band would GG Allin’s brother Merle be involved in back before his face was old enough to grow a Hitler mustache. Well, give your Ambien supply away to the little kids on your block, because you need wonder no more: Back in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s, before that menacing little mudflap sprouted beneath Merle’s nose, he played bass in a catchy, jangly new wave outfit called the Thrills who sounded a tiny bit like a slightly edgier, garagey Blondie. Who’da thunk it? But now you know. And so now it is, in the immortal words of the great Tor Johnson, “time for go to bed.” –aphid (Dionysus)


TOXIC NARCOTIC:
Beer in the Shower: 7"
One of the United States’ better hardcore outfits have been kind enough to cease with the yellin’ and release two of their bagpipe-slathered instrumental tunes on a picture disc. If you’re lookin’ for something to tide you over until that next “All-Irish Traditional Hoedown” record from whatever popular punk band is making the rounds these days, then look elsewhere, as these tunes are really fuckin’ good and we wouldn’t want you damaging you precious musical sensibilities with quality music. In short, highly recommended.  –jimmy (Rodent Popsicle)


TWISTED ROOTS:
self-titled: CD
Yessir, you are correct, this band had ex-members of The Screamers (Paul Roessler) and the Germs (Pat Smear). Kira went on to join Black Flag. Pat went on to play with Nirvana. The second drummer, Gary, went on to become the lead singer for Celebrity Skin. The good news is they were only around for six months from ‘81-’82. Do yourself a favor. Go check some of those aforementioned bands out. They’re good to great. Twisted Roots sucks along the lines of a self-absorbed, hippie carnival Devo. It definitely goes way beyond the gauntlet thrown down by SSDecontrol – “How much art can you can you take?” Purely punk intentions alone do not a punk record make. Bleargh. –todd (Dionysus)


TRANSISTOR TRANSISTOR:
Wolves: CD
Screamo gives me a rash.  –jimmy (Level-Plane. The address is too friggin’ small to read)


TYRADES, THE:
I Am Homicide: 7"
Blue collar retard art rock. On The Planet of The Tyrades, everything’s just more tightly wound, more visceral, louder, faster moving, and mixed up. Like a golf ball in a vice, split open with a hacksaw, there’s a hard shell to crack, and inside, it’s all rubber bands of elastic bass lines and snapping guitars and drum punishment that’ll put an eye out if you’re not careful. You know how some “higher-minded” art rock bands are all about hard-to-grasp angularity and it makes you feel like you’re in an immaculate Laundromat of the future for rich fucks? Sterile, churning, misplaced; you’re only allowed to watch, not touch. The Tyrades make me feel like they’re making cool animals shapes (monkeys with knives, armadillos with boners) out of plastic explosives and they share the kabloom! with the listener. One of my favorite bands right now keeps on trucking along. A no-brainer for fans of the Orphans, Sweet J.A.P., and the Functional Blackouts. –todd (Shit Sandwich)


VAPIDS, THE:
We Can’t Do It: 7"
Safe poppy punk for small children and their puritanical parents.  –jimmy (Route 13)


THRIFT STORE HEROES:
Moving On: CD
Alarming Fact: Planet Earth is now dangerously infested with Blink 182 wannabes. Though they are obviously testicle-less, they manage to breed like soft, cuddly bunnies. Let it be known: Western Civilization is now fully declined. Whatever happened to those L-5 space colonies that Gerard O’Neill promised? I gotta get me the hell outta here. God, I hope my neighbors didn’t overhear me playing this sappy dreck. Even the little old lady next door who eats Chapstick will be laughing at me. –aphid (Thrift Store Heroes)


THRETNING VERSE:
Time for War: 7” EP
I remember seeing these guys a few years back and not thinking much about them, other than they were just your average backyard hardcore band providing the perfect music to get drunk by. Well, that assessment’s changed thanks to this smokin’ piece of wax. The sounds are steeped in the hardcore sounds found east of the LA river, fast and furious with no bullshit delivery. This sounds like it could’ve easily come out in the mid-’80s, thanks in no small part to the efforts of Messrs. Jake Smith (TV git-twanger and former Crucifix punk hero) and Mike Vallejo (ex-Circle One guitarist and current Decry babe magnet), who do a great job with the producing and engineering, respectively, and getting this to achieve maximum rage. You like it loud, raw and fast? Look no further. –jimmy (Puke ‘n’ Vomit)


THOUGHT RIOT:
Sketches of the Undying Will: CD
Another sophomore release to review. This band has progressed smoothly to this release. The song writing and musicianship is much stronger. This is much more enjoyable than their previous release. Equal parts Anti-Flag, Rise Against, and AFI is what comes to mind while I listen. Social/political lyrics are a continuing theme. My highlight would be the stronger use of choral background vocals and using more subtle ambient guitar notes to electrify their songs. I might actually leave my house the next time the band comes to town to play a show.  –don (A-F)


TEXAS THIEVES:
Forced Vacation: CD
Mid-to-gallop-tempo punk here, mining the old OC stuff as well as Northern Cali skater punk sound of bands like the Faction. I really wasn’t expecting much from this, but it’s actually pretty danged good, and “Crucifixes Are for Kids” is just flat-out great. –jimmy (Super Speedway)


TEAR IT UP:
Taking You Down with Me: LP
From the title track, which is basically Black Flag’s “Scream” tweaked and regurgitated as an instrumental, to their blazing tears through tunes that sound like they were plundered from Hüsker Dü’s thrashy back catalog, it’s obvious that these guys have a firm grasp of the history of the music they play, and they wear it on their sleeves. This is not meant as a dismissal, an attempt to lump them in with the hordes of lesser hacks who think that four chords played fast constitute good hardcore. To the contrary, it is obvious that bands like this and like-minded powerhouse Out Cold have a firm grasp and respect for the past and they allow it to influence, rather than dominate, their present musical output. These guys are far from a rehash band. Sure, all requisite hardcore identifiers are met with ease, meaning the songs are short, fast, and the boys play ‘em like they are royally pissed, but there’s enough original spark and, more importantly, a sense that their efforts are genuine in intent to allow them to stand tall over the teeming masses of generic cactus heads and nouveau metal merchants. It is wholly gratifying to hear others of like mind who revere rather than debase the music. I recommend that you buy a copy of this and indulge in a little smashism while it blares in the background. –jimmy (Havoc)


TAMION 12 INCH:
Let’s Suffer: CD
Listening to Tamion 12 Inch’s latest full-length, Let’s Suffer, is like being trapped inside a fever dream, escalated by too much Codiene—a vivid terror you just can’t, or perhaps don’t want to, escape. When the dream breaks with the fever, you wake up sweat drenched and compelled to write down every grotesque detail. The album’s first song “The Devil was Right (part 1),” is a sinister nursery rhyme setting the mood for the album like the childhood chant before the kill that marks so many horror movies. Tamion 12 Inch continues to drag listeners further into the void with sharp electronic precision, blistering noise, ominous basslines, guitars creating a death grunt, and a singer reminiscent of Siouxsie Sioux howling her way through “The Lord’s Prayer.” This is some seriously haunted electronic punk. I may not be able to sleep with the lights off after listening to this, but it is worth it.  –liz (Ersatz Audio)


TALK, THE:
It’s Like Magic in Reverse: CD
Punky power pop in a Vapors vein. I’m willing to bet there were a lotta high-fives and smiles around the room the first time they heard the final mix, ‘cause they’ve just about nailed a perfect combination of good hooks and edgy delivery. A very good, very welcome surprise.  –jimmy (MoRisen)


SYZSLAK:
I Am Misery: 7” EP
No, your music is misery. You’re just the sadistic bastard responsible for it.  –jimmy (World Eater)


SULTANS, THE:
Shipwrecked: CD
I don’t understand how John Reis can be so prolific and still have so many tricks up his sleeve. After about a million Rocket From the Crypt records, a few Drive Like Jehu records, a couple of Hot Snakes records, and the first Sultans album, you’d think that maybe he might be running out of ideas. Apparently, that’s not the case, as this whole album pretty much rules. It’s a lot different from the first one, Ghost Ship, which is more fuzzed out and garagey-sounding, but it’s still really, really good in a slightly laid back kind of way. It really is amazing how these songs don’t sound like castoffs from a RFTC album. No artsy motives or pretensions, they merely rock. Totally recommended.  –Josh (Swami)


STRUGGLE, THE:
Hopeless Nights: 7"
These guys are from the east coast and play a combination of hardcore and punk. Out of the four songs, three of them are fast hardcore. One is mid-paced. They are all good. The lyrics are about perseverance and sticking things out and doing what you want regardless of what others think. These guys are scheduled to tour the east coast this spring and the west coast in late summer. So if they are coming to your area, check them out. –Mike Beer –Guest Contributor (FNS)


STRONG COME ONS:
Yell a Lot and Suck: 7"
More like Yell a Lot and Rock. That is the dumbest thing I’ve ever said in a review. Loud, fast, and catchy as hell. –megan (Big Neck)


STREET TRASH:
Self-titled: 12” EP
I haven’t a clue who they are or where they come from, but this is by far the punkest record I’ve heard in a while. Amped up hardcore is the order of the day here, with lyrics covering incest, child abuse, drug abuse, isolation and other topics. Sounds like more of the same ol’ same ol’? Well, imagine those topics addressed by Feederz or the Child Molesters fronted by someone who is easily as annoying as the guy who fronted the Crucifucks and it’ll be quite clear to you that this is not another boring meander through self-righteous sloganeering. I’ll be quite surprised if they don’t find themselves with an FBI file or two on them in short order, considering the current political climate we find ourselves living in. Dude, this is soooo recommended. –jimmy (Kapow)


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Razorcake Podcast Player



·Featured Reviews from Razorcake Issue 77
·GENDERS, THE
·WORLD/INFERNO FRIENDSHIP SOCIETY, THE
·HELLBILLY BOYS
·ANTI-NOWHERE LEAGUE
·Jobjumper
·LOW CULTURE
·MODERN ACTION / SWINGIN’ UTTERS
·Webcomic Wednesdays #85


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