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Razorcake #93
One Punks Guide to Pinball, by Kayla Greet
Razorcake #92
Spokenest, Gone, Gone, Gone LP
Pinned In Place, Ghostwritten By LP


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No Idea Records

Record Reviews

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DEFCON ZERO:
Music for Gluesniffers, Terrorists & the Mentally Ill: CD
Potent cross-pollination of U.K. and U.S. strains of punk, resulting in thrashy hardcore with topical lyrics that aren’t afraid to make a point, served up nice and overdriven. These London louts deliver the goods in spades here. –jimmy (Pumpkin)


DEFEATED, THE:
Asbury Cocksucker: 7”
Oh, man. This record is unreal. It’s one of those rare recordings that stays with you days after you’ve listened to it, like an unfinished letter, a mirage swimming in the distance, the answer to a trivia question just below the surface of your consciousness, until you find yourself back at the record player, dipping the needle into the grooves, filling the house with sound. I can honestly say this: it’s like nothing I’ve ever heard before. Oh, man. –jim (S&M)


DEFEATER:
Empty Days & Sleepless Nights: CD/2 x LP
Boston’s Defeater has thrown together what amounts to two different releases to comprise Empty Days & Sleepless Nights. The “Empty Days” part is the hardcore, screamy album of ten songs. The “Sleepless Nights” portion is five songs of acoustic guitar, singing, and even some slide guitar. It’s a striking turn for the normally fast-paced five-piece. And in some ways I like the acoustic tunes better than the hardcore ones. While there is some good melody and passion with the Empty Days tunes, they don’t strike me as bringing much new to the table. And perhaps the Sleepless Nights tracks don’t add much new to the scene either, but they are really heartfelt and stand in such complete contrast to Defeater’s other material. It displays Defeater’s breadth and talent, which is always nice to see in a hardcore band, especially on a label (Bridge Nine) that has been known (at least until lately) for offering so much cookie cutter youth crew music. Defeater may have a semblance of that youth crew sound but they are much more diverse than that. It’s reassuring to see a hardcore band exploring their talents and still performing it all capably. –kurt (Bridge Nine)


DEFEATER:
Letters Home: CD/LP
This five-piece Boston hardcore band continues the literary device around which they have built their entire band: the struggles of a family in the post-World War II years. It’s gritty and dark, with murder, guilt, and hopelessness. This is not a lyrically upbeat album. And yet it is all done in a mature manner. Many bands wouldn’t be able to utilize the device effectively, but Defeater does so in a way that makes me want to know more about these characters; I’d love to read short stories of these individuals. The shorter run time (ten songs in thirty-four minutes) makes each track seem urgent and important without being rushed. Defeater gets their point across and moves on to the next track all the way up until the closer, “Bled Out,” the longest on the album, that culminates with vocalist Derek Archambault yelling, “All I see is the bastard in me,” the same lyric that anchored the opening track, “Bastards.” Yet Letters Home isn’t a blistering album, as there is melody even if Archambault’s vocals are primarily screaming. Hell, when I heard the guitar at the beginning of “No Saviour” and “Bled Out,” I would’ve thought I was listening to something from Sonic Youth’s Murray Street. Joe Longobardi’s drumming is worth particular note, as it’s not only solid, but also at times complicated. He doesn’t just settle for fills in spots where other drummers might have done so. The point is that Defeater hasn’t gone soft, nor is their fierceness unbridled. Instead, they’ve found a way to put it all together just right.  –kurt (Bridge 9)


DEFEATER:
Abandoned: CD/LP
Perhaps some of you are familiar with Defeater’s modus operandi. For those who aren’t, Defeater is a concept band from Boston and all their songs relate to a fucked-up family in post-World War II New Jersey. Abandoned doesn’t focus on the family, but instead a periphery character, a priest who makes an appearance on a song on their first album Travels. The priest is a WWII vet and the eleven songs explore his experience after the war and losing his faith. Musically, the band is still playing melodic hardcore, but the lyrical content strikes really close to me. Losing faith is something that seems trivial to people who haven’t experienced it, but it’s life-altering for those of us who have endured it. Guilt, doubt, and hopelessness are strong emotions that appear in the lyrics and Derek Archambault’s throaty yells emphasize the depth of the experience the priest undergoes over thirty-four minutes. Besides Archambault’s great vocals, the drumming is also worth mentioning. Joe Longobardi is a monster on the drums and there were moments I was blown away by how tight his playing was. Defeater hasn’t ever put out a bad album, and not only is this not a bad album, it’s easily their best. It’s intense, moving, and thoughtful, and worth checking out for any fans of melodic hardcore.  –kurt (Epitaph, epitaph.com)


DEFEATIST:
In Praise of False Hope: 7”
This is intense stuff. Eight songs on a 7” of brutally heavy, angry hardcore. The cookie monster vocals are there, the dark brooding guitars and smashing drums and bass. They compare themselves to Disrupt and Napalm Death and that’s good enough for me. I don’t know if I could take more than a 7” worth of this, but it made me wash dishes like there was no tomorrow! –Buttertooth (Chainsaw Safety)


DEFEATIST:
Thanatonic State: 7”
I am amazed that there are actually people who listen to grindcore. None of the songs are catchy, the lyrics aren’t coherent, and you can’t even sing along. What’s the appeal? If you’ve heard one grindcore band, you’ve heard them all. However, if you have never heard grindcore, this 7” might be mind blowing to you. –Bryan Static (Level Plane/Enucleation)


DEFECATION AREA / TONY JONES AND THE CRETIN 3:
Peace, Love and Slamdance: Split CD
The singer of Defecation Area has a grating vocal affectation that involves ending lines by swooping into a ridiculously high-pitched pig squeal. It drove me so crazy that I inadvertently jammed congealed pizza cheese into my ears to make it stop. Realizing what I had done, I put my head in the microwave to melt the cheese out so I could hear Tony Jones and the Cretin 3 rip off some Ramones riffs. That bored me so bad that I just left my head in the microwave until the whole shebang melted. Then I put this CD in there too. –mp (tonyjones.org)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Yeah, I’m a Terrorist b/w Little Ways: 7”
I loved this band the instant I saw them perform and this 7” is just as intense as their live performances. It’s relentless from start to finish while still being musically engaging and well spoken. This band is literally and figuratively in your face, and no I’m not one of those jackasses who gets that word wrong, just go see them live. This is highly recommended and hopefully will be able to tide you over until they release something else. –Daryl Gussin (Clarence Thomas)


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 (Clarence Thomas)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Words: 7"
I’m old fashioned. I involuntarily wince when a band I really dig breaks up (The Observers) and the folks go on to other bands. Totally unfair of me. Guilty. Suckin’. It takes a bit of time for the water to recede from the previous endeavor and listen to the new project by itself, of itself. Fact 1: Colin and Mike are two golden dudes who know how to play and their ethics are unquestionable (again, old fashioned of me, I know). Fact 2: Instead of griping, or “pulling a Misfits” or “pulling a Dead Kennedys” and holding on to the vestiges of a once-great band, these two go a completely new route. Fact 3: Bands that clone Black Flag (pick your era) suck. Bands that find those hidden lightning bolts and charge their own brains can rule, and Defect Defect do just that. It’s a straight-forward attack that’s simple, yet mighty effective. Fact 4: I’ll give any band that’s named after a Wipers lyric more than the benefit of the doubt. Theory 1: I have the feeling they’ve got plenty of surprises up their sleeves and I can’t wait to hear more. Conclusion: awesome. –todd (Clarence Thomas, www.bistrodistro.com)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Words: 7"
It’s official; I still think Defect Defect are one of the best bands going in American punk today (actually, just make that punk). The A side is new versions of songs from the demo tape, and one of the best examples of making you feel like you’re seeing a band live ever. The B side is one new song that’s a little weirder, but makes me really anxious to see what kind of directions they’re going in. Though at this rate, I don’t want a full length, because if they tour the U.S. for every 7” they put out, my guess is that they’ll somehow strap water skis to their van and literally drive it around the Earth to support an LP. Seriously, get into this band right now. –joe (Clarence Thomas, www.bistrodistro.com)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Self-titled: CDR
I’m not making this reference casually: early Black Flag (which is the Black Flag in which I abide). Every member is a monster at their instrument. There’s a militia-like staccato, like a grim, ritualized beating, coming from every direction. Colin’s voice marshals commands and directives. The shaped charge of each song hits the target in a tight cluster. Maximum impact. Minimum fuss or flourish. This is dire, direct, penetrating shit. Very good. –todd (Self-released? Got the silk-screened tour edition when they played nearby.)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Self-titled: 12” EP
Finally available on vinyl, this is one killer 12”. Defect Defect is one of the best bands in the U.S. playing mid-(to fast)-tempo, straight-forward hardcore punk. It definitely has its flourishes and intricacies, but its most valuable asset is its bass-heavy, to-the-point aggression. No clutter, no distractions, just rock solid songs. It’s been a long time since the Words EP came out, but this record has made it worth the wait. –Daryl Gussin (Residue)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Self-titled: 12" EP
Remember when it seemed like these guys used to play your town at least three times a year? Those were great times. Now after an (understandable) hiatus, they’re apparently back, with more of the straight-forward punk that channels the aggression of Black Flag as well as the slight goofiness (i.e., not taking themselves way too seriously) of the Descendents. There also seems to be a little more of a classic ‘80s hardcore influence (and a little more Wipers-esque weirdness in spots) this time around as well for this fantastic mini-album. It’s bands/records like this that I love to write about. Welcome back. –joe (Residue)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Self-titled: Cassette
I’ve already expressed my love of Defect Defect, hesitating to call them “one of the best ‘80s hardcore revisionists going today,” only because they’re not afraid of putting their own weird spin on it. For some reason, it doesn’t surprise me that a French label would put out a limited cassette singles/vinyl collection. It’s not new stuff so I don’t know what else to say about it—other than it’s a neat little release—especially if you’ve missed out on some of their other records. –joe (Crapoulet, crapoulet.fr)


DEFECT DEFECT:
My Life Is like Death: 7”
Three punk rock heat blasts from a band that I thought was no more. Defect Defect play spit-in-your-eye punk rock with no pretense. I keep spinning this back to back to back and I can’t get enough. There is so much loathing, both inward and out. There is a lot to be pissed about in the world, and Defect Defect definitely taps into it. I sure hope they haven’t called it a day. I would love to see them play again.  –Ty Stranglehold (Dirt Cult)


DEFECT DEFECT:
Deefography: CS
Deefography is a kind of discography for Portland-based punk quartet Defect Defect put out by Japanese label Snuffy Smiles. I’m pretty sure this band disbanded, it’s hard to tell for sure though. Their cassette is ambiguous and they have little to no internet presence, with the exception of a few record nerd blogs, German label Taken By Surprise’s Bandcamp, and a Facebook event from 2013 that promised a good time and a BBQ. Some serious off the grid shit. If you like Black Flag and a big chunk downstrokey pop punk from the ‘90s and ‘00s, you’ll probably love this cassette. Its really bass heavy, which I love since some of the bass chords and runs made some predictable tracks way more exciting. Though it goes through the motions like lots of punk does, this cassette is upbeat and melodic, with a taste of dark guitar work in that I-listened-to-Darker-My-Love-for-a-year-straight kind of way. If that’s your thing, find it if you can.  –Candace Hansen (Snuffy Smiles)


DEFECT DEFECT / DAYLIGHT ROBBERY / FOREIGN OBJECTS:
3-way split: 1-sided LP
It’s a three-band show that’d totally rule. Three contemporary punk bands on three different channels, but all on the same wavelength, if that makes any sense. Defect Defect: Colin couldn’t be clearer. He’s calling out all punks who got “too old” and have “given in.” I can almost see his crooked glasses slipping off his face as he sings this. Black Flag? Absolutely. Damaged, not TheProcess of Weeding Out. Lines drawn. Tough love. Napalmed babies. I’m down. Daylight Robbery: Sounds like their records come with a spool of police tape that raps around your stereo as it plays. It cordons off a crime scene, sets the place in noir-ish blacks and whites, expands to ten times its original volume, and carefully inspects and detects. Think X, Los Angeles, not Hey Zeus! Foreign Objects: I blame professional wrestling. When I did a podcast with Bill Pinkel and he played the Foreign Objects, I was like, “Oh, there was an L.A. band called that.” No, no there wasn’t. It was Legal Weapon. The professional wrestling opposite of a Foreign Object. Although the guitar plays “Just Another Damn Song” by Bad Brains, this is totally Legal Weapon-y, Death of Innocence, not Squeeze Me like an Anaconda. Summation: Oh, hell yeah, I hear echoes of bands before. But it’s the best echoes, not the questionable ones (that loved the Grateful Dead and hair metal). Run that correct shit up a pole. Great stuff. –todd (Dirt Cult)


DEFECTORS, THE:
Bruised and Satisfied: CD
Based on all its ingredients—strong ‘60s garage tunes with a gloomy tinge, Farfisa organs, sound quality that doesn’t sound like utter shit—I should be lapping this up with a large spoon, but something I just can’t place my finger on is keeping me from doing so. Best I can figure is it’s missing just a smidge more oomph to push it over the edge. Gonna hafta listen to this one a while longer and see if it grows on me. –jimmy (www.badafro.dk)


DEFECTORS, THE:
Turn Me On: CD
I’m new to the Danish band the Defectors, so I don’t have the previous full lengths to go on. They are a mix of ‘60s Nuggets bands and the Scandinavian ROCK sound that seemed to really catch some attention in 1998. The strongest song is “It’s Gonna Take Some Time,” where they really do come across with what could be an obscure song from 1968. Sadly, some of the tracks fall back on lazy rock clichés. They do come across as a band that is still experimenting. –Wanda Sprag –Guest Contributor (Bad Afro)


DEFECTS, THE:
The Demos: CD
For those not in the know, the Defects were one of Belfast’s early punk bands, responsible for an album and a handful of singles. Though they started out in 1978, they’re often lumped in with the whole UK82 crop of bands, with tunes like “Dance Until You Drop” and their other catchy tunes fitting in well with that era of U.K. punk’s edgy urgency. Collected here are some rarities/obscurities, including their first demo from 1979, and tunes from three live shows from the years 1980, 1982 and 1984, respectively. The demo tracks are nice ‘n’ catchy, and the live stuff can be a bit of a rough listen in parts—which makes sense, considering they’re from audience tapes by the sound—but the band’s energy manages to shine through the muck. Sweetening the deal is the small fanzine-sized accompanying booklet, chock full of pics and clippings, covering the band’s career and some back stories on the recordings. According to said booklet, the band’s out and about again, so if you find yourself in their neck of the woods (or vice-versa) you’d do well to pay one of their gigs a visit –jimmy (Anti-Society)


DEFEKTORS:
Secret Trials: 7" single
Only two songs: short and simple, yet addictive as hell. Enough to get you off your dead ass and hovering over the turntable to flip the record over for another listen. And another and another and another... Defektors take a page from early L.A. punk like the Eyes, but with more of a garage sound. Damn catchy, played with attitude, and a solid delivery. Downright life-affirming. –Matt Average (Nominal)


DEFEKTORS:
“No to the Nite” b/w “Torn to Pieces”: 7"
Reverby, repetitious dance punk that’s so catchy and full of rockin’ parts that there’s no need to get into the ugly details like: who calls something a double A-side 7”? If this is what hipsters are listening to these days, that ain’t too shabby. –Daryl Gussin (Hockey Dad)


DEFEKTORS:
The Bottom of the City: LP
Wow! I have the two singles, and they’re pretty good, but this album totally surpasses any expectations I had towards these guys. The music has become more urgent and direct, shedding some of the instrumental touches but gaining more power. There’s definitely an early Wipers influence in the music, with the jittery rhythms and skirting the territory between punk and post punk. The influence is really apparent on the “Burning Light,” which goes off into “Youth Of America” territory with its duration and surf guitar sound. Songs tend to stay in the mid-tempo range, but can get really lit up, as on “Kickfirstone,” which starts off much in the same way as the others, then it’s fast and in your face. Head on over to the last record store in town and get it. –Matt Average (Nominal / Grotesque Modern, recordsnominal.com)


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·LOCOMOTIONS, THE
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