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Razorcake #84
Tim Version, Ordinary Life LP + bonus 7"
Radon, 28 LP
Zisk #25
Razorcake #83


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Record Reviews

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Below are some recently posted reviews.

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RIVER CITY HIGH:
Not Enough Saturday Nights: CD
Pounding the same drumbarrel as dudes like the Black Furies and the Supersuckers–arena-flavored rock’n’roll with plenty of songs about women and what badasses the band members are, interspersed with the occasional “sensitive” ballad about looove, baby. I obviously don’t know these guys, so who am I to judge their intent or honesty, right? But solely as a listener, this record comes across as uber-glossy, they mention their caterer in the liner notes, and the whole endeavor oozes as much sincerity as a four-dollar bill. There’s nothing particularly offensive about it, but there’s nothing there that really reaches out and grabs the lovehandles either. –Keith Rosson (Takeover)


RAPID CITIES:
Demo: CD-R
Dude, decent, aggressive emo is still alive and kicking, though I figure that’s about the last thing that the average Razorcake reader cares to hear. Myself, I’m on this stuff like, uh, fly larvae on a huge pile of shit. Or something. The three songs here sound like a nice blending of 1000 Travels Of Jawaharlal, The Shivering and maybe True Feedback Story. Gotta tell ya, it’s totally refreshing to hear this stuff done well for a change. Good work. –Keith Rosson (Rapid Cities)


PTERADON:
Demo: CD-R
So this guy wrote his address on a piece of paper and taped it to the face of this CD-R. The CD-R was also spray-painted. Plus, said CD-R was cracked nearly in half by the time it made it to me. All of this resulted the Pteradon demo being one unplayable motherfucker. –Keith Rosson (Pteradon)


NIGHT TERROR:
Demo: CD-R
Four songs. Some soundbites. Sounds like it was recorded live. Ugly punk with lots of cymbals and distortion, as well as some slow parts where they get their stoner-rock on. Remember how you’d sometimes go to your friends’ band practice in the drummer’s garage after school? Remember how you liked ‘em okay but figured that if you guys just had some beer and the drummer’s mom wasn’t home, they’d probably sound a lot better? Well, Night Terror sounds a lot like your friends’ band. –Keith Rosson (Night Terror)


CHESTERFIELD:
Destination Nowhere: CDEP
First song: “With you gone, I’ll never make it. You took my heart, now don’t you break it. If I could just look into your eyes, and feel your heart beat next to mine.” Look, I’ve been to Medford, Oregon before. It’s a pretty shitty town. I understand. But that does not excuse the fact that I felt it necessary to actually turn this down for fear of people actually thinking that I was putting it on of my own volition. Six songs that straddle the four minute mark; lifeless mid-tempo “melodic punk” with wah-wah guitars, multi-tracked saccharine vocals and lyrics that go straight for the jugular, if the jugular was full of sap, sugar, and obviousness. I mean, okay, there are flittering moments where they sound eerily like Pulley or something, but with the creepy-ass bat skeleton and stressed, damaged Certificate font on the cover, these guys should be sued for misrepresentation. Sometimes being somewhat culturally isolated (like, say, living in Medford) can produce some stunning results, a forging of new ground. Other times, you just wind up aping your heroes, badly. –Keith Rosson (Mental)


BLACKLIST BRIGADE:
Slit-Noise Hymns: CD
I was immediately turned off by the rough-hewn recording and big jumps in sound quality, but then I trudged through this thing a few times and then found myself putting it on well after I could’ve written a review and been done with it. So there’s some promise here; they’re taking some heavy cues from Smalltown, Juvenile Product and Streets of San Francisco-era Swinging Utters, as well as a heavy nod to the Pogues. Mushmouthed, confident ‘77-styled punk that just misses the mark of being really, really good, mostly because of the aforementioned sound quality and the lack of coherency in the way the tracks are presented. One swaggering, near-acoustic track after another, then a few pogo-punk numbers in a row—why not streamline the record by splitting them up so they don’t blend into each other? Regardless, there’s still something relentlessly anthemic about Slit-Nose Hymns, but with a brighter, more consistent recording and a more straight-arrow approach to what songs got included on the record, it could’ve been stellar. –Keith Rosson (No Front Teeth)


HEAVY HEARTS:
Self-titled: CDEP
Indie rock that’s stuck in the ‘90s. Undeniable Jawbox, Fugazi and Versus influences. I’m so outta touch with this scene that I didn’t know people made music that sounded like this anymore. Not my cup of slop, but okay if you like the three bands mentioned above. –Josh Benke (The Swingline)


FITT, THE:
Elastica Pacafic: 7”
Big Neck Records delivers the goods again with this heavy, grunge-punk soup of meaty, ‘70s metal riffage and voice-put-through-a-paper-shredder delivery. I like rich, warm, pitch-perfect vocals as much as the next guy, but there’s something to be said for someone who gets in front of a mic and belts out a tune sounding like he’s in the midst of a month long battle with strep throat. The title track has a big New Bomb Turks influence, while the rest of the record delves into sludgy territory. Good and different. –Josh Benke (Big Neck)


HEARTACHES, THE:
Too Cool For School: CD
Billy Dee can barely sing, the guitars are trebly and sound like they could fall apart at any moment, and the drums sound on the verge of shambles—in other words, it’s perfect. Quick, catchy shots of 90 proof punk that tries on the styles from decades past and gives them a now sound twist. I hear flashes of the New Bomb Turks, Motards, Black & Whites, Chuck Berry, and Riverdales. There’s an undercurrent of timeless naivety to these songs, but something tells me that’s a conscious choice made by the band and that they’d gladly sneak off with your girlfriend and sister after the show. Covers of Love (“Seven & Seven Is”) and the Testors (“Let’s Get Zooed Out”). For fans of the Real Kids, Boris the Sprinkler, the Woggles, sugar highs and falling down drunk…and, really, that should be everybody. –Josh Benke (Swami)


URINAL MINTS:
Own Your Soul: CD
It would be easier to choke down an actual soiled urinal mint than to make it all the way through this CD in one sitting. I required four separate occasions to get through the 27 unmercifully awful songs on this disc. Two of the three band members were smart enough to use photos that don’t reveal their identities on the back cover, which leads me to believe the identifiable idiot is the one responsible for this utter cow shit. The Urinal Mints take stabs at a few genres: metal, pop punk, power ballad, all of which are generic pabulum. The song titles say it all: “River of Piss,” “She’s Got a Dick,” “Dildo,” “Fuck Me Up the Ass,” “Cockpunch,” “Kill and Fuck,” “Mind If I Masturbate,” etc. Own Your Soul is one of the dumbest, un-fuckin’-funny extended jokes I’ve ever heard. Avoid at all costs. –Josh Benke (Plinko Productions)


LION OF JUDAH:
Universal Peace: CD
My PK sixth sense went into overdrive when I picked up this disc to put in the CD player, and I couldn’t even read the band name on the front cover. Lion of Judah…definitely some sort of biblical reference, probably having to do with the lord acting like a lion and tearing the shit outta some civilization or other. Old Testament hoo-ha, for sure. LOJ should get together with Lamb of God and start a tour, “The Pious Damn You To Hell.” Ah, but these young would-be crusaders likely know that the lord also sayeth, “Judge not, lest ye be judged,” which translates, loosely, in modern speak to, “This sounds a lot like a cross between Suicidal Tendencies and Bad Brains as filtered through the Bridge 9 label.” The lyrics are cribbed from Propagandhi, sans all the cussing, and address the evils of war, manifest destiny, greed, big government, and there’s even a song that tackles personal insecurities. Their hearts and minds are in the right places. Produced by Don Zientara and mastered by a guy named Alan Douches…HEE-HAW! –Josh Benke (Youngblood)


VARSITY WEIRDOS, THE:
Fly Me Up to the Moon: 7” EP
“Don’t Back Down” by The Queers paced pop punk, only the singer isn’t trying to copy Brian Williams. I’ve mentioned it before, if you’re into pop punk, watch It’s Alive Records, because this came on colored vinyl, with a poster, and fancy CD-R, so you know they don’t mess around. Also, I’m going to point out that one of the dudes on the cover of this is wearing nearly the same Soviettes shirt as I am now, so I like the cut of his jib. –Joe Evans III (It’s Alive)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Spastics Music Volume One: CD
I’m not positive, but I’m pretty sure this is a collection of bands from the Midwest. I couldn’t find any label info (the website they provide didn’t work for me), but there’s a number of weird indie rock/post punk bands (some that sound a lot like Girls Vs. Boys, one that sounded like Against Me! by way of Hootie And The Blowfish), as well as one of my favorite Modern Machines songs. Other than that, the other highlights to me were the Crossed Wires and PB Army songs. I’d be interested to hear what else the label is up to, if I could find any info on it. –Joe Evans III (Spastics)


GUITAR BOMB:
Back Alley Jesus: CD
I’m not much of a one man band aficionado by any means, but that’s what this is, and I like it. Going with that, I’m not sure how else to really describe it other than a bunch of rad country/bluesy jams, so I’ll add that this is on Crafty, who get an A+ in the “being stand up dudes” department, for putting out some cool local records, as well as setting up shows, which makes this worth checking out on that merit alone. It’s like the fact that it’s a good record anyway is an added bonus. –Joe Evans III (Crafty)


GOD DAMN DOO WOP BAND, THE:
Broken Hearts: CD
So here’s the deal: this is a bunch of punks, who decided to start a doo wop band. Not some cutesy little “punk” doo wop band, like a real, legit, doo wop band. And it’s freaking awesome. Heck knows I have enough trouble describing punk rock, so this is even tougher on me, but I do know the dudes can play, and the ladies can sing. I mean, everyone starts punk bands now, but who starts doo wop bands? I love this. –Joe Evans III (Afternoon)


FOUR DEADLY QUESTIONS/ANSWER LIES, THE:
Split: CD
Four Deadly Questions: already amongst the handful of my favorite New York City punk bands (well, I mean, there are a lot of punk bands there). I almost want to say they sound like if Toys That Kill were both angrier and weirder. The Answer Lies: I’d been meaning to check them out as it is, so I was happy when I realized they were the other half of this split. I was also happy to hear the thrashy, straight up punk rock that is their half. I pronounce this split a “W”, for winner. –Joe Evans III (GC)


FAKE PROBLEMS:
Spurs and Spokes/Bull>Matador: CD
Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe that this is four new songs, and four old rerecorded ones. I saw this band for the first time over the summer and bought a CD, but was a little bummed upon listening, because I really didn’t think it sounded like them live; this changes that. Fairly Against Me!ish alt-country, with some strong indie rock overtones to it too. It gets a bit arty at times, but all in all this band seems to be improving with every release. –Joe Evans III (Sabot)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Demo, Yeah, I’m A Terrorist b/w Little Ways: Tape, 7”
Holy shit; new favorite band. Quick synopsis, think if Black Flag kicked out Henry, and brought in Milo. Even still, I think that’s kind of not doing them justice. Kinda weird, with a perfect balance of being really pissed off, alongside hopeful optimism. I’m also going to point out that on the 7”, there’s four different covers, one for each member. I’m way psyched that there’s still good, serious punk bands, that still love fun. This is awesome. –Joe Evans III (Clarence Thomas)


DAN PADILLA:
Self-titled: CD
There’s a part of me that wants to say that this is what the Replacements would sound like as a basement/party punk band, but another says that’s just taking an easy way out. There’s going to be inevitable Tiltwheel references made, but I think that’s fitting considering it’s some of the same dudes. There’s notable differences though, as Dan Padilla’s got a bit more soul to it (I know it’s been said before by other people, but it’s true), with an occasional touch of country twang, but it’s still rockin’ through and through. My only complaint is that this is a great summer night record, and here I got it in the middle of winter. –Joe Evans III (ADD)


COPYRIGHTS, THE:
Button Smasher: 7” EP
I can’t help but wonder if I got this because I’m into pop punk, or because I do all my reviews while playing Super Smash Brothers. Anyway, this is a really good, Ramones style pop punk record, with tons of sing along choruses. You could easily take any song from this, and seamlessly put it on a Lookout! Records comp, from when they still had bands like Squirtgun, The Lillingtons, and Moral Crux. If you like pop punk at all, you’ll like this. –Joe Evans III (It’s Alive)


CAPTAIN CHAOS:
This Is Cake: CD
I’m pretty sure this is the dude(s) that run Plan-It-X, and that this is a concept album, the concept being that it was written/recorded as a birthday present to a friend of theirs. Like a lot of the PIX stuff, this is all fairly lo-fi, acoustic stuff, some of which gets pretty silly at times, and some of which takes more than one listen to get used to. Now, this may not be flawless, but for what it is (a simple folk punk record, done entirely in about three days, while the dude was apparently sick), it’s still really good. I’ll add that if someone called me up and told me “Hey, Captain Chaos is playing at the Laundromat in our cruddy town tonight,” I’d eagerly head over. –Joe Evans III (Crafty)


BULLYS, THE:
BQE Overdrive: CD
Ehhh; a combination of street punk/hardcore riffs, mixed with “we’re badass, we totally don’t care what you think” attitudes. I pretty much made up my mind by “Pop Is For Fags.” Yeah, you don’t care what people think, I get it. I guess that makes two of us. –Joe Evans III (The Bullys)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Oi! The Album: CD
Ah, yes, good to see you again, old friend…. Much turntable-time has this record gotten from me over the past twenty-odd years, and with good reason: it’s a great fuckin’ record. Unlike so many of the more recent forays into the oi/“streetpunk,” this, the very first of the lot released way back in 1980, is blessed with a track list that is consistently great, if not downright awe-inspiring. A couple of clunkers aside (hello Postmen and Barney & The Rubbles), the bands represented reads like a who’s who of the original “oi” wave—Cockney Rejects (whose “Oi Oi Oi” here gave the style its name), Peter And The Test Tube Babies, 4 Skins, Exploited, Terrible Twins (a collaboration between The Cockney Rejects’ Mick Geggus and Kidz Next Door bassist Grant Fleming), Angelic Upstarts, Cocksparrer (whose blues workout “Sunday Stripper” remains one of the collection’s brightest moments), Max Splodge, and Slaughter & The Dogs—and the songs they contribute are all anthems of the genre. Many a noggin, this once included, has been shaved to this bad boy, and no doubt that will remain the case for some time to come. Glad to see this is available with its original track list intact, and much thanks to the Captain for the format upgrade. Now I can give my vinyl copy a much-deserved rest. –Jimmy Alvarado (Captain Oi)


SIX SIX CRUSH:
S/T: CDEP
There used to be a low-down sleaze-fuck band here in the Twin Cities called the Coffin Cheaters, and they were to the local “scene” what halfwit serial killer Otis Toole would be to the Pope’s funeral, especially if he had his pants down and was pleasuring himself in one of the pews. They were loud and unscrubbed and they were one of my favorite bands to go listen to. Then came a parting of ways and the band split up and I was left standing there wondering where I would get my next fix of crushing scumpunk. Fortunately for me, Six Six Crush has arisen from the ashes of the burned down outhouse that was the Coffin Cheaters. And SSC, like all good children, carry on the parent’s perversions; the perversions in this case being a tendency to pound listeners over the heads with a concrete toilet plunger—albeit without the Mentors-esque lyrics the Coffin Cheaters were known for. I don’t know who I like better, the Coffin Cheaters or Six Six Crush, but that’s sorta like arguing about whose trouser pike was bigger, Rasputin or Uncle Milty. This band is the snarling offspring of one evil motherfucker of a band and I for one am glad that this pissed-in gene pool will continue to kick and claw its way up (or down) the evolutionary ladder, one way or another. Fans of the Midnight Evils might want to check these guys out. I can’t wait for the full length. –aphid (six_six_crush@hotmail.com)


SICK OF IT ALL:
Outtakes for the Outcast: CD
A collection of fifteen mostly previously unreleased, B-side and import-only tracks recorded from 1994-2000, with the exception of "Just Look Around," recorded in 1992. Includes covers of Sham 69's "Borstal Breakout," the Misfits "All Hell Breaks Loose," Hüsker Dü's "Target," and more. I must admit that hardcore is not my forte, but I do enjoy some pretty raw shit on occasion. However, this album is aimed straight down the middle and therefore fairly humdrum. –Jessica Thiringer (Fat)


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