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Record Reviews

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BOOTLEG BILL:
Treasure Trove of Trash: CD
Okay, Sean. You know how to get my attention. Who else are you going to send a CD that is absolutely covered with porn. Not just your regular “high dollar” porn, but porn with trashy girls in gang bangs, BDSM, facials, pissing, anal fisting, squirting orgasms, and a guy taking a dump in a girl’s mouth, all right there on the cover. So, with expectations really high at this point, I popped in the CD. Surprisingly enough, it didn’t meet them. Very dull, southern style rock’n’roll. It actually sounds like most of the stuff I would hear on the jukeboxes in the redneck bars in Florida with one slight exception: the lyrics. For example, song titles include “Too Much Porn,” “Smut Peddler,” “Big Muff Earth Mama” and “Gorilla Crotch.” Here is a little of what Bootleg Bill has to offer: “Gonna poke your hole until you’re dead/Gonna slow fuck your face until it’s red” and “Hardcore porn has served me well/I’m gonna shit on your face, please enjoy the smell.” I bet this guys gets all the chicks with lines like that. –toby (Scarey)


BOOTSCRAPER:
Country & Eastern: CD
There seems to be an awful lot of bands out there doing the whole “pirate” thing these days. Come to think of it, there are a few bands doing that “gypsy” thing, too. What if someone were to start some kind of “gypsy-pirate” hybrid thing? A Gyprate band! There would be fiddles and accordions and banjos and mandolins playing sea shanties... If that is something you’ve been clamoring for then Bootscraper is your band. It’s well played and pretty fun. I get the feeling that seeing them live would be a booze-soaked, wench on either arm type of affair that I would have a hard time remembering in the morning. Sign me up. –ty (TNS, tnsrecords.co.uk)


BOOTSCRAPER:
Self-titled: CD
This sounds like something that should be played on a pirate ship. I really hate this kind of stuff. Decided to look at the insert and there’s really lame artwork of them playing on a pirate ship. Real original. Watch out for the curve balls. Sarcasm. The term “Aggro Folk” is prominently displayed, yet this isn’t aggressive or folk, it’s just bad. –Rene Navarro (TNS)


BOOZEHOUNDS, THE:
No Sympathy: CDEP
Once I got past the annoying “sound of someone getting their ass kicked” intro, this was pretty good up-tempo street punk fare. The singer’s voice has a unique quality that I like. The music is well played, but for some reason, the snare drum is really loud and in the front of the mix. It’s really distracting, to the point where it’s making me enjoy this less. I’d like to hear a better recording. –ty (Lude Boy)


BORDER BASTARD:
XVII: CDEP
A three-piece from Italy that, apparently, has been shredding since 2010. The sound here veers between full-frontal punk that recalls The Damned, while other tracks lean on stoner rock standards. It’s still more Motörhead then straight-up sludge in most cases. “Satan’s Priest” lives up to its name. Burning flames and taking names! Solid work.  –koepenick (Kornalcielo, kornalcielo.wordpress.com)


BORED GAMES:
Party ‘Til You Puke: 10"
Power pop by way of smooth garage/girl groups, with a noticeable rock’n’roll influence—not in the Chuck Berry vein, so much as the kinds of bands like the Reigning Sound or Used Kids, and while, admittedly, I don’t know that kind of stuff that well compared to a lot of my friends, I do like this. I recognize Addie from Lefty Loosie (who did a good job singing before, but really sounds fantastic here), but not the other dude singing, who provides a good contrast, keeping things interesting. This is terrific! –joe (Repulsion)


BORED STRAIGHT:
Self-titled: 7” EP
If throwback early ‘80s hardcore was an illness (and I’m sure some would argue it is), then this Wisconsin quartet would be terminal. What makes Bored Straight stand out from any number of bands playing this brand of punk? It doesn’t look like much. But! It might be the fact they totally know it and flaunt it with pride ala illusions of early ‘80s hardcore bands such as Die Kruezen and Minor Threat. Either way, it rips. –Daryl Gussin (Data Control)


BORED STRAIGHT / NORDIC WASTE / HOLY SHIT!:
Split: 7"
Wisconsin seems to have an unusually good instinct to stacking bands up on top of each other. This 7” is the equivalent of a River West basement show, except there are only three bands and I have yet to bang my head on the house’s plumbing system. Musically, the trio at hand offers varying speeds and ideologies of harsh, wintered hardcore punk that range in the humor/seriousness department. While not cooking up something for “everyone,” it definitely packs a punch for those who are lookin’ for it. –Daryl Gussin (Holy Shit!)


BORING, THE:
Craving for Change: LP+CD
Strasbourg, France’s The Boring play melodic hardcore with some nods to crusty and emocore. The lead singer shouts his overtly political, struggle-oriented lyrics with the rest of the band kicking in some backup vocals here and there. It’s not perfect by any means—for instance far too many of the songs are similar in sound—but the sincerity and passion are definitely there. I could see these guys kicking ass live. –Craven (Blood And Doner, captain.ahab@gmail.com)


BORIS:
Noise: CD
Possibly the most polarizing release yet from these longtime audio terrorists. Polarizing in that longtime fans might be surprised at the “new” sound and direction the band are taking on this album, but once the shock fades it becomes apparent that this is really just the perfect distillation of the band’s work to date. This CD is at once maybe the heaviest, most poppy, beautiful release I have heard this year. My only complaint is that the album was pretty short by today’s standards. It left me wanting more—much more—but, then again, I guess that is one of the marks of a great album, isn’t it?  –Garrett Barnwell (Sargent House)


BORIS THE SPRINKLER:
...Is Gay: CD
What I like about Boris the Sprinkler is that they put out new albums often enough so that a newish Boris the Sprinkler record is always on high rotation in my life. And all their albums are really good. "..Is Gay" keeps SweetTart-blood-level high. It's fast, bouncy, Ramones-distorted, Norb-twisted rock'n'roll. The monologue is back at the beginning, thanks to a little pre-planning (they stuck Paul #1 in a soundproof booth while Rev. Norb delivered his sermon [though not without having to monologue duel with the computer from the "Group Sex" album]). But I don't want to give away too many secrets. Suffice it to say that the schtick is still funny, and the songs around the schtick are still great. –sean (Go Kart, PO Box 20 Prince St. Station, NY, NY 10012)


BORIS THE SPRINKLER:
...Is Gay!: CD
If you’ve heard ’em before, you already know what to expect: pop punk gems with sly, intelligently stuuupid lyrics. Norb has always reminded me of Tesco Vee, albeit sans Tesco’s preoccupations with his penis, Abba and homosexuals (which isn’t to say that Norb doesn’t often touch upon [no pun intended] these subjects [cf. any one of his columns in Hit List or MRR (the latter [that’s “latter,” not “ladder”] of which no longer carries his columns [which is their loss, I guess])]), and this particular opinion of mine is further bolstered by the fact that the opening track, “Motherfucker Are You Ready to Rock?” sounds like a Meatmen outtake. –jimmy (Go Kart)


BORIS WITH MERZBOW:
Sun Baked Snow Cave: CD
This is just kinda one long weird noise with some clicking. At least I think it’s clicking, or it might be my CD player fucking up, I can’t tell. This shit is weird. Who would listen to this? It’s like an hour long. –ben (Hydrahead)


BORN BAD:
Self-Titled: 7" EP
These guys lay down some really good Midwestern hardcore along the lines of Negative Approach or, more recently, Out Cold. The downside is that although the tracks are recorded nice and raw, the vocals are mixed down just a wee bit too low. Other than that, you could easily point yer speakers at the nearest wall and blow a hole clean through. –jimmy (Fashionable Idiots)


BORN BAD:
Moron Music: 7” EP
Nice bit of spastic, scrappy thrash here, with lyrics addressing blind faith, police brutality, snooty old punks, and stupid young punks. From the sound of ‘em, I’m betting these guys rip shit up live. –jimmy (Fashionable Idiots)


BORN BAVARIAN:
Psycho Commander + Still High: 7"
Counterintuitively, i have found thru the years that it is actually very rarely a good thing when you can't figure out what speed the record is really supposed to be played on (the exceptions that prove the rule seeming to be the Kohu-63 12" [i guess you play it at 33], "Raw Sewage" off the Peace Corpse 12" 33 which my old roommate would always play at 45, and "Surfin' with the Shah" off the first Urinals EP, which once caused the autistic kid i babysit for to roll his eyes back into his head and start violently headbanging when i played it, for whatever reason, at 33 rpm); after some internal debate, i have decided this one-sided record plays at 33 rpm. Song one is plodding troglodyte beller-rock, distinguished primarily by its moderately unforeseen bass-in-lieu-of-guitar-solo; the second song is more melodic, and sounds not unlike a less-slick Professionals or a more-slick Cockney Rejects, but with a long haired, brawny Kraut in a denim jacket screaming himself hoarse on vocals. In a related story, there's a horse on the front cover. BEST SONG: "Still High," i guess. BEST SONG TITLE: Both suck. FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: If you're ever in Germany, don't order Weiss beer anywhere but Bavaria, because the rest of Germany apparently views the Weiss-brewing Bavarians as a bunch of retards and will give you a bunch of shit for it, or so my observations have been. –norb (Casual)


BORN DEAD ICONS:
Unlearn: 7"
If I say the Motorhead of hardcore, it doesn’t do this band justice, but that’s exactly what it sounds like, minus the solos and trimming the song length while still setting a definite tone and not shying away from slower, heavy breakdowns. It’s awesome (in the original sense, not the dude/brah sense) and amazingly cinematic. It’s almost impossible not to have something play and worm around in your head when the record spins. I picture bombed out cathedrals, but that’s just me. I’ve always wondered what Lemmy and Co. would have sounded like if they were sliced in half, length-ways, and sewn onto the sliced-in-half bodies of Negative Approach. I no longer have to. Rumor is, they’ve done all Turbonegro sets and called themselves Turbohooker, so they’ve got to have a sense of humor, too. –todd (Heart First)


BORN DEPRIVED:
Party Hard Core Punk: CD
Figuring prominently in their logo on the cover is a pot leaf, which means this can go one of two ways: the first is that the weed could result in the band tapping into some deep pit of creativity, whereupon they push against staid boundaries and come up with truly fresh and new ideas that make it a joy to play that shit as loud as possible while screaming, “Yes, sweet minty jesus, yes! Artistes they is!” Sadly, the band under scrutiny went for option two: play loose, sloppy hardcore that sounds like most of their rehearsal time is spent trading bong rips and melting into the carpet. Funny for all the wrong reasons.  –Jimmy Alvarado (SBS, fuckyeahsbsrecords.com)


BORN LIARS:
Keep Smiling: CD
I totally expected to like these guys, so I was a bit dismayed when I wasn’t all that impressed. Playing it over, I realized it wasn’t the music that was turning me off but the singer, whose lack of enthusiasm and off-key vocals just zapped all the fun out. Can’t win ’em all, I guess. –jimmy (Mortville)


BORN LIARS:
Ragged Island; Go Back One Day: LP and 7" EP
Funny how just a slight change of direction can make all the difference. Instead of following the tried and true path of a zillion Rip Off/Mummies/Supercharger clones off the cliff into faceless oblivion, these kids make an end run around all them other punters and turn in something more memorable simply by approaching the same material with a nod to ‘80s bands like the Lyres. The result loses none of the rawness or intensity, but the delivery is so much more assured, diverse and, I dunno, real than most peddling similar wares these days. Impressed is I. “Don’t Tell Me, I Know” makes good use of the same chords as the Standells’ “Sometimes Good Guys Don’t Wear White,” too. The 7” is more of the same, with two tunes from the LP and one that ain’t. –jimmy (Cutthroat)


BORN LIARS:
Show Some Couth: LP
This is the fourth album by these underrated Houston garage punks, a pretty dodgy proposition for a genre where three good albums is two more than expected. And, whilst nothing hereon moves me like “Don’t Tell Me I Know” off of 2008’s Ragged Island, one certainly can’t attribute that to ill-conceived deviations from the formula ((said formula consisting of sounding like Chuck Berry for maybe two seconds and maybe like a garaged-up version of the Mullens for another three)). That said, they still cook pretty good on tracks like “Third Time Down,” and it’s killing me that i can’t place the ‘60s punk riff they stole for “Mizzeree Jim.” Well, gimme another three or four albums and i’ll think of it. BEST SONG: “Third Time Down.” BEST SONG TITLE: “Ridin’ Through the Reich.” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: I am strangely obsessed with the fact that the band’s name is both rightside-up and upside down on the cover, so no matter which way you prefer to orient the crudely scrawled crotch shot upon which their logo is superimposed, their name looks correct.  –norb (Little T&A)


BORN LIARS, THE:
Fast Songs Is All We Know: LP: LP
Punk fuggin’ rock, all loud, rootsy, ‘60s-inflected, swaggering, and just plain great. This is stuff that screams, “Play me loud and go hog-fuckin’-mad!” and you just can’t help but do just that. –Jimmy Alvarado (Cutthroat) –jimmy (Cutthroat)


BORN LOOSE:
Self-titled: LP
Ethanol and sweaty hair and yelling and the sound of things breaking and the broken things puncturing other things! This is what Larry May means to me! Sounds ((rather unsurprisingly)) like the Candy Snatchers, except for the parts where it doesn’t, in which case it sounds like the Humpers or Tuff Darts or somebody! The sax on “Step Up to the Plate (Be a Runaway)” and “Bobo Blues” is an exquisite touch, but i think i could’ve lived a very satisfactory life without ever knowing the lyrics to “Sugar Pussy.” Thank you sir, may i have another? BEST SONG: “Step Up to the Plate (Be a Runaway).” BEST SONG TITLE: “Step Up to the Plate (Be a Runaway)” again, suggesting that it is clearly Born Loose’s “No Time to Waste.” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: The bass player and i went to the same college! –norb (Drug Front)


BORN LOOSE:
I Loathe You: 7”
Hound Gawd! Records are well on their way to becoming the Junk Records of this decade, which is to say that half of what they put out is great and half is so-so. This single by Born Loose is absolutely in the great category—strong songs and the speed don’t take away from the rockin’ to be had. The band is fronted by Larry from the Candy Snatchers and sounds a whole lot like that band. Honestly, this might be the best stuff I have heard from this guy since the classic first Candy Snatchers’ album. Members of other NYC bands such as Snuka and Ghetto Ways appear to be in the lineup as well. This band would have torn down the rafters at the Continental in NYC. They’re probably ripping it up in Brooklyn these days.  –frame (Hound Gawd!)


BORN LOOSE:
Blow Out: LP
Blow Out is a speedy record that starts like a night of too much coffee, alcohol, and more alcohol. Born Loose belong in a dirty rock’n’roll dive bar, drinking, sweating, and having a good time. With song titles like “Whiskey Holiday” and “PBR on the Rocks,” it’s easy to see what I mean. These guys would be a good fit opening for Supersuckers or Zeke.  –Ryan Nichols (Hound Gawd, info@houndgawd.com)


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