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Record Reviews

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DOLLYROTS, THE:
Because I'm Awesome: CD
When I used to listen to the radio a couple of years ago, I would listen to Dickey Barret in the mornings here in L.A. before he got fired. He used to play, every once in awhile, a song called “Wreckage” by a band called the Dollyrots. Every time that song came on, it would put on a smile on my face and I would be bopping down the street in my car blasting the stereo. I loved that the vocals were cutesy in a bubblegum way and snotty too. The music with its hard hitting 4/4 drumming and the driving, clean guitars made the song instantly infectious. I never really got off my ass to go look for the release, but it definitely is on my list of things to buy if I ever come across it. So it’s kind of funny that I got the newest release for review. This release has a stronger sound than the previous song that I heard, like they are coming from the garage to the stage. It’s more in your face and has a stronger rock sound. The signature vocals are there but there seems to be more confidence in delivery. The guitars are bolder and punch with much more force. The bass is solid and recorded with the tones that make you feel the notes. Something about the drumming of this band makes me want to pogo because it makes the songs sound more fun. Like the title suggests, the pop geek in me agrees that they are awesome! Now I really need to get searching for that previous release. –Donofthedead (Blackheart)


DOLOROUS CARTER:
For What You Thought Was Once Dead: CDEP
Emo with a bit of screamo. –Donofthedead (Schoolcraft)


DOMESTICA:
Mommyhead / Self-titled: 7" / CDEP
Don’t remember much at all about the ‘90s band that preceded Domestica, Mercy Rule, but they sound like they learned quite a bit from their adventures in that decade. The songwriting, loud guitars, and general feel of the tunes recall that brief period in the late ‘80s/early ‘90s when bands were experimenting with what would happen when you mixed this’n’that with punk’s energy. Although probably not stuff the average Joe wanting something to complement his DRI fixation would wanna invest in, their tunes are catchy, well crafted, and leave pleasant memories when “indie rock” wasn’t a bad thing to call a band.  –Jimmy Alvarado (Speed Nebraska, no address)


DOMESTICS:
Routine and Ritual: CD
A doozy of a full length from the band that impressed with their G.D.P. EP a few issues back. Same drill here—well above-average U.K. hardcore with intelligent, topical lyrics delivered with righteous ferocity in lengths shorter than many other bands’ song intros. They get the blood pumping from go and don’t let up until they decide you’ve had enough, and by then all you wanna do is start the pummeling all over again, bleedin’ ears be damned.  –Jimmy Alvarado (TNS, tnsrecords.co.uk)


DOMESTICS, THE:
Keep It Lean: CD
I can honestly say it’s been a while since a punk full length grabbed me like this. This album will stay in rotation. A keeper. It’s the kind of album you bully people into borrowing, just to say, “I told you it fucking ruled.” Fire-charged and jam-packed full of tight bass lines, these guys tear it up proper. Fourteen songs in twenty minutes that leave you salivating for more. The lyrics are right on and, like the music, powerful and concise. The musicianship here is just top notch. You can tell these songs weren’t created, they were crafted. Definitely recommended for fans of early Metallica, Black Flag, Motörhead, and the Business. –Rene Navarro (Dusty Curtain Face/ Kibou)


DOMESTICS, THE:
The G.D.P. E.P.: 7”
Nice bit of racket here. Hammering, mostly mid-tempo U.K. hardcore-type stuff, with subtle nods to older bands like Conflict and Discharge embedded into the sound as their singer howls about different aspects of modern society, the stupidity of bigots, evolution, and the “culture marines” we allow to process and interpret it all for us. –Jimmy Alvarado (Runny Bum, hobopope.com)


DOMESTICS, THE:
The G.D.P. E.P.: 7”
I’m a sucker for big words used appropriately and not pedantically, so when the Domestics rhyme “don’t come near me” with “existential ennui,” you know I’m in. And what better way to sum up the benefits of going to hardcore shows than this line: “The all-pervasive blandness of this turgid modern life can be kicked into the long grass if only for the night, with some raw noise!” Time to break out the dictionary and do the smart mosh. –MP Johnson (facebook.com/thedomestics)


DOMINION3:
The Hand and the Sword: CD
Imagine "Horse Rotorvator"-era Coil taking a stab at a black metal/Dead Can Dance vibe. It’s a lot better than it sounds. I’m usually pretty cynical about black metal, but this was interesting enough to keep my smart mouth shut. –Jimmy Alvarado (.napalmrecords.com" target=_blank>http://www.napalmrecords.com)


DON GARNELLI :
The Amazing End of Everything: Cassette
I like this. Totally not what I was expecting. The spine on the cover reads “Grindcore death,” so, of course, I was expecting to hear harsh guitars, fucked up vocals, and minced drumming. Instead, this is something from out of left field. It’s ambient noise with grindcore outbursts here and there. When they’re in grind mode, it’s cool. Sort of like Unholy Grave, with the short bursts of sound, then on to the next. But the strength of this tape—and the reason I keep going back to it—is the ambient sounds they’re generating. There are cold squelches of sound, like a wind tunnel taped then ran slow on the playback, or the blips and clicks that float in and out of the speakers. This is kind of like what Gasp were attempting, but Don Garnelli are more successful and interesting. It doesn’t sound forced at all. The soundscapes have a darkness about them, but it’s not one of impending doom. It’s as though you’re spending a late night at an industrial plant and hearing all the sounds that go on as you walk around. –Matt Average (To Live A Lie, tolivealie.com)


DON GARNELLI:
Grindcore/Death: 8” lathe cut
A bit different than their tape I have from a year or so ago. This one is more along the lines of short blasts of traditional grind noise. Somewhere between 7 Minutes Of Nausea and NOYFB. While I do prefer their more expansive stuff, where they go off into the noise experimentation, I also like this side of Don Garnelli. It’s nice to hear bands, or projects, that don’t keep doing the same thing over and over. This record is a lathe cut on plexiglass, so it sounds a bit different than the normal records you’re used to hearing. Only twenty-five were cut, so start trolling the ‘net for one of these. –Matt Average (No label listed)


DON KINGS, THE:
Surfin’ Sickles: 7” EP
Auckland, New Zealand’s The Don Kings play lo-fi surf rock. Fans of The Mummies and The Trashwomen will want this EP. Surfin’ Sickles was recorded live in The Don Kings’ rehearsal room and it sounds like hell; and I mean that in a good way. These guys know what’s up—on bass The Kings have Andrew Tolley (head of Kato and Perpetrator Records) who’s been putting down some mean NZ garage rock for about fifteen years now, seemingly in a vacuum. Added bonus: a nice cover of “Parchman Farm.” Well worth the investment! –Ryan Leach (Kato, myspace.com/katorecords)


DONALD THOMPSON:
Pomp! Pomp!: 7” EP
Ragin’ two-guitar rocky punk that sounds like a youthful, non-Angelino version of those cocaine & whiskey ne’er-do-wells of the ‘90s like the Humpers and, uh, those guys that kind of all sounded like the Humpers but weren’t the Humpers. Except for the feedback and the vocals, which just sound like some highly motivated Italian kid trying to get stinkier. I don’t really hear any massive hits here, but i’m a sucker for that one-note rapid-fire BINKBINKBINKBINKBINK piano like they have in “Bite My Ass” so i bang my veiny pink gavel and find in their favor. BEST SONG: “Bite My Ass” BEST SONG TITLE: “Chalk Outline,” because “Bite My Ass” isn’t nearly as good as it could be if it were “Bite My Shiny Metal Ass” instead. FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Donald Thompson was a former Oklahoma district judge who got four years in jail for masturbating with a penis pump under his judge’s robes while presiding over murder trials.And they say America’s a free country! –Rev. Norb (Tornado Ride/Surfin’Ki)


DONALD THOMPSON:
Screamin’ Feedback: 7” EP
Additional penis-pumping punk from an Italian squad more notable to me for their always-fine cover art and namesake ((an Oklahoma judge convicted of using a penis pump whilst hearing cases)) than for their material being any manner of sonic manna for my soul. Loud, well-played, and well-produced punk with hard rock leanings not unlike some of the less-interesting ((but not entirely horrible)) West Coast bands of about fifteen years ago ((I’m trying to remember the name of that band who didn’t have the bass player and did a Rose Tattoo cover but so far it’s eluding me)). Lyrically, one song rails about “pussies on MTV,” whilst another bemoans today’s generation always being “on TV or Playstation®. One half expects them to start ragging on disco, Pac-Man and CHiPs next. I think the Luv Bulb needs a few more squeezes. BEST SONG: “No Way.” BEST SONG TITLE: “Screamin’ Feedback.” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: A download code is hand-taped to each lyric sheet. Hey, i don’t know where that hand’s been! –Rev. Norb (Surfin’ Ki, surfinkirecords@hotmail.it)


DONITA SPARKS and THE STELLAR MOMENTS:
Transmiticate: CD
It seems that L-7’s Donita Sparks has mellowed with time, but she can still get real heavy, fuzzy, and buzzy. Both the first and last tracks on this CD—“Fly Feather Fly” and “Into the HI FI” are the most rockingest, L–7ish tunes of the bunch with that familiar, dirty, wicked buzz, but it’s not punk rock…its punk-influenced rock that continues to grow on the listener with each successive listen. At first, it all sounds kind of the same, but turn it up and listen deeper. Donita is doing a lot within the slower rhythms with a lot of echo, vibrato, and multiple fluid-layers of sonic depth. Her vocals are still husky-sweet, and a distinctive sense of fun and humor floats up from the pleasantly vibrating resonance. Where L-7 was overtly angry and abrasive, this disc is definitely more laid-back, frequently introspective, with mid-tempo, head-noddingly catchy tunes that are rather trance inducing. At first, I thought “Dare Dare” was going to be an ELO cover, but it turned out to be a solid original performed with traditional ‘70s rock arrangement and a distinctly humorous edge. “He’s got the Honey” is the fuzziest of all and sounds like it could be the theme song for a punk rock kids show…tough punk kids. Yes, Ms. Sparks has evolved and grown over time and this is what it sounds like. She practically did this whole thing by herself and the others got to follow along. –Marcus Solomon (Sparks Fly)


DONNAS, THE:
Turn 21: CD
Yes, they still sound like the Runaways with the Pandoras’ sexual appetites. Thank god for consistency, ’cause this rocks pretty fucking hard. –Jimmy Alvarado (Lookout)


DONNER PASS:
Demo '08: CD-R
Postpunk five-songer with a heavy nod to Wire’s instrumental interplay and jagged edges, except for what is apparently their party track, which is the same as their band name and sounds like a raved-up “Louie Louie” with Matt Freeman singing. There’s something to be said for a band that sings, “Once again I see three severed heads” and makes it sound like a pretty good time. Given a brighter recording and a bit more of an aesthetic appeal—I know it’s just a demo but there’s just about no info here whatsoever besides the song titles and a really pixilated cover—I could find myself coming back to these songs more than a few times. 
–Keith Rosson (Donner Pass)


DONOTS, THE:
The Long Way Home: CD
The Donots play polished and accomplished muscle pop, and through most of the record that works really well for me, but sometimes the sound borders on mall punk, but not quite. I like this record, even though a few tunes become kinda vanilla thanks to slick production. Lyrical content seems to center on the pros and cons of isolation (more pro than con) and the ridiculousness of living with regret; not bad as far as that goes, but the lyrics are a bit clichéd at times. All in all, I liked this record quite a bit, but it sometimes sounds like a mish-mash of stuff I have on a bunch of other records, and there really wasn’t much that struck me as truly distinctive. –The Lord Kveldulfr (OK Good / Solitary Man)


DONOVAN:
Tiny Crustacean Light Show: CD
This is trippy, spacey, and effervescently eclectic acid-drenched audial dementia at its most tantalizing, titillating, and orgasmically intoxicating... it's a mind-altering, intricately swirlin' wahwah-laden melange of sparkle-shine psychedelia ala Hawkwind, Quicksilver Messenger Service, Bubble Puppy, a bit of 13th Floor Elevators, Electric Prunes, "Are You Experienced?"/"Axis: Bold As Love"-era Jimi Hendrix, and early Syd Barrett-fronted Pink Floyd. After numerous awe-inspiring hours of aurally ingesting the floating, fluttering, fucked-up musical magic on this here pulsatin' platter of celestial sonic atmospherics, I dreamily feel as if I've been serendipitously dipped into a multi-colored sugar-swirl vat of tropical-tangy rainbow-dyed kool-aid... and now I just wanna get buck-ass naked and freely frolic in an overflowing field of brightly glowing flowers... wheeeee, and far-fuckin'-out, man! Even though Donovan's Brain inspired me to kick off my Converse, slip into a comfy pair of beaded moccasins, light the ol' lava lamp, and fire-up a floral array of incense sticks, I assuredly ain't no hash-smokin' tofu-munchin' longhaired hippie freak... it's just that the majestic musical ornateness contained herein is so damn inspirationally divine, I momentarily lost myself in a thick billowy haze of childlike fruity-pebble nostalgia. Nothin' wrong with that, is there?! –Guest Contributor (Get Hip)


DONOVAN'S BRAIN:
Tiny Crustacean Light Show: CD
This is trippy, spacey, and effervescently eclectic acid-drenched audial dementia at its most tantalizing, titillating, and orgasmically intoxicating... it's a mind-altering, intricately swirlin' wahwah-laden melange of sparkle-shine psychedelia ala Hawkwind, Quicksilver Messenger Service, Bubble Puppy, a bit of 13th Floor Elevators, Electric Prunes, "Are You Experienced?"/"Axis: Bold As Love"-era Jimi Hendrix, and early Syd Barrett-fronted Pink Floyd. After numerous awe-inspiring hours of aurally ingesting the floating, fluttering, fucked-up musical magic on this here pulsatin' platter of celestial sonic atmospherics, I dreamily feel as if I've been serendipitously dipped into a multi-colored sugar-swirl vat of tropical-tangy rainbow-dyed kool-aid... and now I just wanna get buck-ass naked and freely frolic in an overflowing field of brightly glowing flowers... wheeeee, and far-fuckin'-out, man! Even though Donovan's Brain inspired me to kick off my Converse, slip into a comfy pair of beaded moccasins, light the ol' lava lamp, and fire-up a floral array of incense sticks, I assuredly ain't no hash-smokin' tofu-munchin' longhaired hippie freak... it's just that the majestic musical ornateness contained herein is so damn inspirationally divine, I momentarily lost myself in a thick billowy haze of childlike fruity-pebble nostalgia. Nothin' wrong with that, is there?! –Roger Moser Jr. (Get Hip Recordings, PO Box 666, Canonsburg, PA 15317; http://www.gethip.com)


DON’T:
Away Away: CD
The first thing that crossed my mind is that this band must have named themselves after the fake trailer from Death Proof. Seems like the press kit would write itself…” If you—are thinking—of ignoring—this—band—DON’T!” Anyway, this is ten songs of moody post punky stuff from Portland, featuring ex-members of The Wipers and NapalmBeach. There is no way to get around it. The band sounds a lot like Sleater Kinney, which is just fine by me. Pretty good stuff overall that also veers into kind of Signal Lost territory from time to time –Mike Frame (Red Eyed Rabbit)


DON’T:
“89” b/w “Dead End Drive”: 7”
Portland four-piece made up of three old dudes and a lady who provides whiny, Bif Naked-esque vocals. Trashy rock’n’roll, but not in an intentional or campy way. Their cover of “Ghost on the Highway” sounds just as shitty as the songs they wrote themselves.  –Alanna Why (Dead Broke, deadbrokerec@gmail.com, deadbrokerekords.com)


DON’T LOOK DOWN:
Five: CDEP
If someone tells me that they want to hear The Doughboys, I’m gonna slap on some Big Drill Car, fuck you very much. Same goes for this band if someone has a request with their name on it. –Designated Dale (Nitro)


DON’T LOOK DOWN:
Five: CDEP
They tricked me for the first twenty seconds. A rock’n’roll intro of the Runaways kind. Ahhh, but then they turn into the latest Sum 182 rip-off. –Megan Pants (Nitro)


DON’T LOOK DOWN:
Five: CD single
This is not my thing, but if it is yours, you should buy it. It’s well-done melodic, emotional pop punk. These guys are good musicians and their songs are well done. I could very well see these guys being on the Warped tour. They would fit in perfect. –Mike Beer –Guest Contributor (Nitro)


DON’T LOOK DOWN / THE DESTRUCTORS:
Je Suis Radio (split): CD
The Destructors are one of those ‘70s bands that simply will not stop playing and putting out releases ranging from decent to classic. Their four songs included here are a healthy mix of their initial ‘77 sound with a pinch of hardcore thrown in. Don’t Look Down is another high quality British band, although one of their contributions to this split almost kills the whole project. They decided to record a semi-cover, semi-tribute to the classically shitty 1980s radio hit “People Are People,” which manages to be even shittier than the already atrocious Depeche Mode song. I suppose out-shitting notoriously bad Euro-pop is some sort of a cultural achievement in its own right. –Art Ettinger (Rowdy Farrago, destructors666.com)


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