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Record Reviews

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MESS FOLK:
Indifference to Life: Cassette
I’m not going to pretend that I love this tape. I was going to make a comment about how if you go to shows and start nodding your head while the band is tuning, this would be good for you to check out. I’m sure as fuck not going to pretend that I had any idea who Mess Folk was before I listened to this scummy, raw, piece of garage filth. And that sucks. It’s festering and oozing and passionate and really fucking hard to like. It’s one of a shit ton of Mess Folk recordings out there, some of which are much better. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the last, because the man behind Mess Folk died last month. I get the sense that there were a lot more shitty tapes that he needed to record. –MP Johnson (Hamburger)


MESS MESS MESS:
Could You Bet: LP
Italian street punk band that sounds very U.K. ‘82 to me. In fact, since the band sings in English, I would never guess that they were even Italian without looking at the liner notes. I would have guessed that they were from Britain. Had a hard time while listening to this genre after the ‘90s when this style was so prevalent and popular. Stepping away from it makes it more palatable. This three-piece of two males and one female play this type of music well. I’ve heard many a bad street punk band through the years and this one definitely stands out; kind of like listening to the Exploited meets A Global Threat, but with more melody and added moments of poppiness. If I could still fit my bondage pants, had hair to spike up, and could find my leather jacket in my garage, I would get geared up to check out this band live if they ever came close to the house. That would be a scary sight. –Donofthedead (No Flags)


MESS//AGE:
Moments of Mayhem: Cassette
Goddamn! Fifteen songs of raw, furious anarcho punk in thirty-ish minutes, straight outta Flensburg, Germany. MESS//AGE mixes tempos throughout, playing variant after variant of their angry, heartfelt message without sacrificing an iota of urgency. No matter whether their subject matter is personal or political, it’s impassioned, with nary a stinker in the bunch. The hoarse, shouted vocals are reminiscent of Martin from Limp Wrist and/or the throat-shredding gentlemen from Assfactor 4. Great, great stuff I can’t recommend highly enough.  –Michael T. Fournier (message.bandcamp.com)


MESSENGERS, THE:
Self-titled: CD
Granted, it's solid and tuneful punk rock stuff, it's totally catchy, and the singer sounds like a dead ringer for Cinder from Tilt. Granted, the layout and production are really nice and they're probably a terrific live band. Granted, they seem sincere, and my foot's tapping. But this one just falls a bit short somehow, I can't help feeling a little ripped off—for one thing, while it is solid and tuneful, it's also comprised of songs that I feel like I've heard before. Half the time it seems like I'm listening to a cover from another band, like it was a song written from an entire other era of punk rock. You could call that a spirited homage or you could call it shameless regurgitation, I don't know. Then the rest of the time I'm just wishing they would speed it up a bit. Anyway, they've got the mohawks and the tats down, but they left the snot on the bus. The Messengers are really good at what they're doing, it's just that what they're doing rings a lot closer to early Discount, minus the lyrical quirks, or Tilt without the speed, than they do to Antiproduct or To What End. And, you know, I've already got all the Discount and Tilt records I need. –Keith Rosson (Punk Core)


MESSERSCHMITT:
Shake That Thing: CD
Croatian band listens to one too many Stones albums. Band puts out a record that starts off with their attempt at "Jumpin' Jack Flash" and includes covers of songs made popular by Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, John Lee Hooker and others. A resounding "eh" can be heard from the masses. Should've figured when I saw they were covering Nugent's "Scream Dream" that the proceedings would be pretty painful. –Jimmy Alvarado (Slusaj Najglasnije)


MESSERSCHMITT:
Shake That Thing: CD
Croatian band listens to one too many Stones albums. Band puts out a record that starts off with their attempt at “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” and includes covers of songs made popular by Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, John Lee Hooker and others. A resounding “eh” can be heard from the masses. Should’ve figured when I saw they were covering Nugent’s “Scream Dream” that the proceedings would be pretty painful. –Jimmy Alvarado (Slusaj Najglasnije)


MESSRS:
Demo: Cassette
The copy of the tape that I got would not play on three different tape players. I even resorted to a bit of tape surgery to get it playing to no avail. I went to their Bandcamp and got most of the songs that were on the demo and am really glad I did. If you were ever a Circus Lupus fan or a Chris Thompson fan in general, this is for you. Messrs are a bit heavier and dirtier than the previously mentioned projects but the sound is there, intentional or not. I’m going to throw in a Mayyors reference for good measure. The vocals have effects. There are bits of spacey, drawn-out parts, and the sound quality is a bit blown out, making for an ugly but tough sound. The cover art is a bit goofy with some melty happy faces. Aside from song titles, there is absolutely no more information on the packaging. Would have appreciated the info so I didn’t have to go on a hunt to actually listen to it.  –Adam Mullett (Self-released)


METAL HEARTS:
Socialize: CD
Mellow, dull as hell indie stuff. –Jimmy Alvarado (Suicide Squeeze)


METAL TEETH:
Wild Eyes: 7"
Pretty good four songer from this Kalamazoo band. Anyone who is a fan of most of the Terminal Boredom type stuff like Human Eye, Intelligence, Terrible Twos, or Jay Reatard will find a whole lot to like here, which is to say there is sort of a root in garage punk, but there is a hell of a ruckus of noise built on top of that. The kids seem to be calling it weird punk and that is as good a description as any. This appears to be limited to 300 copies, so you best get on it. –Mike Frame (UFO Dictator)


METALLEG:
Hit of the Week: LP
Metalleg occupies the bit of the Venn diagram where pop punk and power pop intersect. You know: sometimes there’s the chug of a Ramones song in the band’s guitars, and other times there’s catchy melody that might’ve come straight outta the Cheap Trick playbook.  –Michael T. Fournier (Trend Is Dead!)


METAMORPHOSIS:
Self-titled: 7”
Metamorphosis are a group of hardcore punks now out in Oakland by way of Peru. The Metamorphosis EP, released last December, features four tracks from these dudes, all but one sung in Spanish, and only the B-side features songs recently written. The A-side evokes Negative Approach and stripped-back hardcore, while verging a bit on the jogging positivity of 7 Seconds, as the group’s tone leans toward excitement over anger. On “Hombre Nuevo,” I can hear a gnarlier version of 88 Fingers Louie, like a hardcore band pushing for vocal melodies at the forefront; and in “Zombie People,” I catch the distorted shimmers of Canadian rockers, Grade. Meanwhile, the EP art features a couple sitting on a couch with their exploded heads oozing together like the blob monster in The Thing. Right now, that’s pretty much how I see these guys—kinda awesome, kinda gelatinous and jumpy, and still soaking in. You can catch them on their West Coast tour later this year. Metamorphosis is overall enjoyable, and worth hearing, if not only to hear and support some Peruvian hardcore.  –Jim Joyce (Skull Brigade)


METEORS:
These Evil Things: CD
I dunno if I’ve outgrown ’em, if they’ve lost their sheen, or if I’m just not in the mood, but these guys just ain’t movin’ me like they used to. The songs are all right as far as psychobilly goes, but they seem to be variants on the same theme and lacking in oomph. Found myself drawn more to the three instrumentals than the tracks with vocals. –Jimmy Alvarado (Headhunter)


METEORS:
Psychobilly: CD


Wow, I didn’t even know these guys were still around. As suggested by the title, they’re still doing the psychobilly thang, although they don’t sound anywhere near as frantic as I remember ‘em being back in the day. The mix here doesn’t help matters much, either, as it sounds like they recorded this in a big, empty hall. Lackluster and disappointing, to say the least

–Todd Taylor (I Used To Fuck People Like You In Prison)


METH MOUNTAIN:
SELF-TITLED: CD
I don’t really care for this band name, but found that, strangely, I like it a lot better when it’s written: “MethMtn.” Go figure. There is a black drawing of a wolf on the (white) cover of the CD. I actually love wolves but this drawing seems a little typical. I thought they were going to be a metal band. Some of the songs maybe start a bit metal, but then the rhythm and the way the guy sings, I feel, is more punk. Man, that singer is gravelly! Makes my throat hurt just listening, but I like it. They seem like they might be young. Sometimes they sound like kids just fucking around, but then they pull something out that’s a bit more mature. Kind of mid tempo, not too fast. One of the rhythms reminded me of the Sex Pistols. The singer’s voice sometimes reminded me of Born Against a little (although the music doesn’t sound like them). The third song I liked the most. They sound a little disgruntled, like they might be ready to kick your ass, but in a gritty, alley kind of way, not in a hardcore jock kinda way. On Self Aware records (which also puts out a zine, apparently); the name of which sounds to me like it might be a straight edge gig or something. Nothing that would seem to really blow me away and, yet, I have listened to it numerous times already. An unexpected surprise. –Jennifer Federico (SELF AWARE , MYSPACE.COM/SELFAWAREZINE)


METH MOUNTAIN:
Monotony: 7" EP
The problem with giving a song a title like “Monotony” is that one is gonna expect it to sound monotonous and, lo and behold, it does. “The Regulators” and “Vessels” much better, with ‘em dishing up more up-tempo, rock-tinged punk fodder with just enough personality and avoidance of standard punk/hardcore clichés to keep things interesting. The triangle-shaped lyric sheet was cool, too. –Jimmy Alvarado (lunchboxrecords.com)


METH MOUNTAIN:
Discography: Cassette
Another of those instances where I find out about an awesome band once they’ve split up. I wish they would have stuck around a bit longer. I could have then obsessed over them, bought up their vinyl, and hoped they’d one day come play L.A. But nope. They called it quits this past February (2010). Fuckin’ nuts... What needs to happen is they need to rethink this decision, get out of town, tour, and rule the world, or at least the world of the hardcore scene. Their sound is hardcore that’s fast without being ridiculously fast, raw, and distorted, and they throw in some curves with forays into noise as well as the sludge number, “Devil’s Lettuce.” If you like bands like Total Abuse and Fresh Meat—and who doesn’t, really?—then I recommend this. All this stuff was recorded in a year. It shows a band who was progressing their sound and could have gone on to make some greater records. Glad I grabbed this one! –Matt Average (Self Aware, selfawarerecords.com)


METH TEETH:
Meth Teeth: 7”
Sweet rotisseried baby! This is a dark and deeply disturbing record. It opens with “Bus Rides,” a frenetic onslaught reminiscent of The Tyrades. “Unemployment Forever” is more subdued but poleaxes you with its darkness. The song is punctuated by an open bass note that resonates out of the void and stabs you in the brain. It’s a hellish sound, like a cow on the slaughterhouse floor. It makes you remember why warriors blew into conch shells or beat on goat skin drums before an attack: it makes the enemy shit their pants and wish they were dead. The second side is a bit mellower, a cross between Morphine without the jazz syncopation and Bryan Ferry all looped out on Oxycontin. Get this record if you dare, but do yourself a favor and search for them through their label or pictures of seriously fucked up teeth are going to pop up in your search engine. Unnerving.  –Jim Ruland (Sweet Rot)


METHADONES, THE:
Ill at Ease: CD
Man, I can’t fuckin’ believe how uncannily The Methadones aurally resemble Bad Religion before BR sold their souls to the major label big boys. This grandslam CD illustriously possesses all of the frenetic grandeur of Suffer, No Control, Against the Grain, and Generator. The songs are intricately structured, tight, cohesive, and perfectly sculpted – melodious, yet drenched with intelligence, attitude, and disquieting inner rage. The vocalist has Greg Graffin’s indignant monotone down to a tee, precisely enunciating each syllable and spitting it out with obvious disdain for the world around him. The soaring starburst harmonies are thickly layered with abrupt strafings of sky-rocketing guitar leads, bone-shattering rhythm guitar crunch, bazooka-blast fieriness from the bass’s low-end roar, and explosive mortar-shell drum wallops. Gimme another beer. Fuck heroin. I’ve got The Methadones! –Roger Moser Jr. (A-F)


METHADONES, THE:
21st Century Power Pop Riot: CD
This CD is chockfull of covers of obscure and one-hit wonder songs from the ‘70s and ‘80s power pop phenomenon. It’s simply delish. My favorite track to have on repeat in the car has to be “Back of My Hand,” a Jags cover. So friggin great. The songs feature cameo appearances from members of Dillinger Four and the Copyrights, among others, and an amazing guest lead vocal performance on “Goodbye To You” by Annie of The Soviettes. This album has me amped. I can’t wait for the Methadones to hunker down and get back to writing original tunes. Will someone offer these guys a multi-billion dollar deal already? We MUST ensure the actualization of a large discography...and making it so Schafer and the boys can focus on and get paid to write music is the only way possible! Fuck those American Idol finalists. The winner is the Methadones...who’s got the contracts? Step up motherfuckers! –Mr. Z (Red Scare)


METHADONES, THE:
Not Economically Viable: CD
I usually stay away from saying things like “my favorite band is...” or “the best band in the world is...” simply due to the fact that it would be impossible for me to decide. I listen to countless genres of music (from jazz and afro-beat to rock, hip hop and countless off shoots of such things) and this list is way too immense to even begin formulating a specific answer to those types of questions. What I can do is tell you is which band has been in constant rotation in my car and at work this winter. I play their albums over and over again and never seem to get sick of them. Their songs manage to make me smile and feel better about life in a way that shows I’m not the only other melancholy romantic out there who isn’t gothic or emo or (insert sad-face stereotype here). Yes, folks, it’s The Methadones I’m rambling on and on about. Their dark and full-bodied take on pop punk is fucking amazing. It’s not the thumb-up-your-butt pop punk of Blink-182. It’s not the whiny pop punk of New Found Glory. And it’s not as simple and stripped down as bands like The Ramones, either. Although Dan Schafer, the frontman for the Methadones, was in Screeching Weasel, this band also doesn’t take on a bratty tone nor the arrogant know-it-all stance of the aforementioned band or, let’s say, the Queers or MTX. The music is nothing short of amazing. Great guitars, perfect drums, and the best lead and backing vocals of any band out there right now—mainstream or not. The lyrics kill me; they are so beautiful and smart and sad and cynical and positive all at the same time. Each full-length takes you on a rockin’ emotional roller coaster while the catchy choruses and hooks stick in your brain like white on rice. The first album on A-F was good. But it wasn’t until Career Objective that the song writing took full shape and dropped my jaw to my chest. Not Economically Viable is wonderful, too, though. There are more songs on Career Objective that seem to steal your heart at first listen, but this album is just as good and it’s a themed album loosely based on one of my all-time favorite movies, Falling Down, which portrays Michael Douglas’ character as having a nervous breakdown in the post-modern world we live and work in—you can tell I dwell in cubicles by day, can’t you? A themed album is hard enough... imagine undertaking such topics! It’s beautiful, I tell you, just beautiful! I haven’t been this emotionally attached to nor impressed by every piece of music on a pop punk band’s discography since Washington’s Sicko (and quite possibly the Vindictives before that). Ah, my beloved Methadones. This is the real deal folks. Real emotions. Real topics. Real good music, and if you’re not a fan or have never heard them before, start off with Career Objective and see if I’m not spitting the truth. –Mr. Z (Thick)


METHADONES, THE:
Not Economically Viable: CD
Reminds me of Eddie and the Cruisers for some reason, and that may be bad to you but for me it rules. It’s some good ol’ fashioned pop punk and, go figure, that’s probably because Dan Vapid (Screeching Weasel, Riverdales) and Mike Byrne (Vindictives) played on this release. Some pop from the guys who know how to do it right. So why does it remind me of Eddie and the Cruisers? I don’t know. Probably because that’s really the only thing that came to mind, dick. Gabe Rock –Guest Contributor (Thick)


METHADONES, THE:
This Won't Hurt...: CD
I’ll be honest, as much as i liked last year’s Power Pop Riot LP ((and i liked it a lot)), the previous non-power-pop-cover Methadones never really connected with me—it always sounded like a cross between Bad Religion and Dillinger 4 or something, i dunno. I am unaware of what exact twists and turns the band’s creative toilet snake bent itself through over the course of the last few years, but, suddenly, i am confronted with the wholly unexpected finding that the Methadones are actually fucking RELEVANT to my life inasmuch as they are singing about the type of shit that people who listened to Screeching Weasel or the Riverdales ten or fifteen years ago would actually care about now that they are ten or fifteen years older. Who fucking knew that it was within pop-punk’s molecular structure to mature along with its audience and practitioners? Even more unexpectedly, what were the odds that Vapid would turn out to be the smart one of the bunch? Weird world, man. Thanks for this, i dig it. Now put out another fucking cover album, dorks! BEST SONG: “Street in My Hometown” if i’m feeling nice, “Poor Little Rich Girl” if i’m not so inclined. BEST SONG TITLE: “Where Did You Hide the Sun,” although, now that i think about it, that’s kind of emo. FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Actually, if Vapid is just now realizing that the traffic in Chicago sucks, he might not be the warmest tater in the microwave after all… –Rev. Norb (Red Scare)


METHADONES, THE:
Ill at Ease: CD
Man, I can’t fuckin’ believe how uncannily The Methadones aurally resemble Bad Religion before BR sold their souls to the major label big boys. This grandslam CD illustriously possesses all of the frenetic grandeur ofSuffer, No Control, Against the Grain, and Generator. The songs are intricately structured, tight, cohesive, and perfectly sculpted – melodious, yet drenched with intelligence, attitude, and disquieting inner rage. The vocalist has Greg Graffin’s indignant monotone down to a tee, precisely enunciating each syllable and spitting it out with obvious disdain for the world around him. The soaring starburst harmonies are thickly layered with abrupt strafings of sky-rocketing guitar leads, bone-shattering rhythm guitar crunch, bazooka-blast fieriness from the bass’s low-end roar, and explosive mortar-shell drum wallops. Gimme another beer. Fuck heroin. I’ve got The Methadones! -Roger Moser, Jr. –Guest Contributor (A-F)


METHADONES, THE:
Career Objective: CD

Another release from the old pop punk dynasty! Here we have Dan Vapid’s latest effort, with all its Mass Giorgini production and pop punk yumminess. Decent pop punk, heavy on the rock end of things, no surprises here. This is Golden Grahams.

–Maddy (Thick)


METHADONES, THE:
Gary Glitter: 7"
Being a big Briefs fan, the first thing this 7” reminded me of was their song, “Gary Glitter’s Eyes,” (although their song was a play off of The Adverts’ “Gary Gilmore’s Eyes.”) Gary Glitter being the famous glam rock musician who is known for the popular sporting event song “Rock’n’roll.” He was convicted for having child porn on his computer and then again for committing obscene acts with minors. The Methadones tackle the pedophile songwriting affair by giving a nod to Glitter-esque rock riffs while their lyrics expound on the precarious situation of Mr. Glitter. The second song on the vinyl, “Over the Moon,” returns to classic Methadones power pop punk song writing as they deliver catchy riffs infused with melodic vocals. The songs here are fun but the cover art is still probably the best part of this record. It has Glitter in sparkly, red-sequined attire, posing with his face brimming with a cheeky rock’n’roll gaze. –N.L. Dewart (It's Alive)


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