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No Idea Records

Record Reviews

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PLAN B PURSUIT:
Under Your Hat: CD

This is a case of influences outshining a band’s own vision. The songs on “Under Your Hat” sound like rip offs of Pinhead Gunpowder and early Green Day. Don’t get me wrong—I love all that music—it’s just that this album keeps me turning to the CD player and wondering, “Is that Billy Joe Armstrong?” which makes these songs too derivative. This pop punk album does have some catchy tunes. “Twist and Fall” is worth a listen. The drums are upfront, upbeat, and pounding throughout the tracks. My gut tells me this band would put on an amazing live show. Perhaps, on stage, they would represent a little more of their own sound? (Eunuch, www.myspace.com/pbp)

–Guest Contributor (N.L. Dewart)


PLAN OF ATTACK:
Stick to Your Guns: LP
Tattoo flash-styled album art of a pirate ship. Gorgeous red/orange/black splattered vinyl. Gruff, thick-necked oi with a propensity for wanky guitar solos. Lamentations about the workaday world, backstabbers, and binge drinking. Contains the immortal song title “Glass Half Fucked,” which has to be one of the funniest things I’ve ever read in my life. This label has some truly fantastic, convincing bands on their roster (Stranglehold, The Ratchets, Smalltown, Bombshell Rocks, Downtown Struts to name just a few) but Plan Of Attack unfortunately has some work ahead of them to reach that stature—Stick to Your Guns is a competent enough aping of the streetpunk genre (and maybe that’s all they’re shooting for) but for this listener, they’re gonna need a little something-something to separate them from the bevy of other bands that are tilling this particular field.  –Keith Rosson (Pirates Press)


PLAN R:
Self-Titled: 7"
Although I’m sure it’s not their intention, Plan R kind of reminds me of Dick Army. Cheap, simple knockoffs of early Black Flag played for fun and without any real curveballs (except for the singer’s curvy balls, but that’s another story…). I don’t know if it’ll remain in heavy rotation for a long time, but I think I can safely say that it’s one of the top five or six bands that this Colin guy has ever been in. –Josh (Blind Spot)


PLANES MISTAKEN FOR STARS:
Spearheading the Sin Movement: CDEP
This is the clash of metal and emo; it’s really strange. My friend Phil said that this is a pretty different direction for them. He also says it’s kind of like early Metallica, but I don’t see it. I’m not sure how I feel about this. –Megan Pants (No Idea)


PLANESMISTAKENFORSTARS:
Fuck with Fire: CD
Part Die Kreuzen, part Sonic Youth, this has just enough emocore tinge to be annoying and just enough edge to keep it from being flung out the nearest window. While not exactly my cup o’ tea, I reckon I respect them for at least putting some balls into what they’re doin’. –Jimmy Alvarado (No Idea)


PLANESMISTAKENFORSTARS:
Fuck with Fire: CD
Part Die Kreuzen, part Sonic Youth, this has just enough emocore tinge to be annoying and just enough edge to keep it from being flung out the nearest window. While not exactly my cup o’ tea, I reckon I respect them for at least putting some balls into what they’re doin’. –Jimmy Alvarado (No Idea)


PLANESMISTAKENFORSTARS:
Up in Them Guts: CD
More just heavy than metal, more Sabbath than Maiden, more doom, cataclysm, and urgency than pussy, pills, bottles, and a cheap fix. More darkness of twilight than the light of dawn. More bruises and welts and slashes than clear skin and perfect teeth. Unkempt hair, viking style. I’d admit that I don’t listen to this type of stuff that often, but I’ve got to hand it to Planes Mistaken For Stars for creating their own non-ironic ecosystem of songs. Everything fits—from the whispery, nail-punctured screaming to the atmospheric (instead of needlessly intricate) guitaring to the booming of the drums. It all sounds so big picture and scorched earth. Much like an epic movie is effected by scenery, the entire tone—every note—of this album is spot-on and reinforces the initial drive and theme. I can’t say that it’s really my bag, but you’ve got to hand it to them for following their own vision and making a powerful record that doesn’t reek of a wispy fad or mere style. –Todd Taylor (No Idea)


PLANET FOR TEXAS, A:
Sprechen Sie Rock?: CD
This starts out mighty fine – a hopped-up Zeke/Motorhead singalong ditty about truckstop speed, with sweltering breakaparts and neat dynamics – along the lines of what The Reaction put out a couple months back. Pleasant and ferocious enough to warrant a smile. Then, song by song, the band takes bigger nibbles at a big chunk of dry bubblegum; No Use For A Name-reminiscent pop punk or like all Digger albums, except Powerbait. I understand it’s a trick to put toughness and grit into Beach Boys-derived pop punk – the Badtown Boys do exceptionally it well – but A Planet For Texas just don’t stick it. I don’t necessarily hate it, but songs like “The Day I Almost Died” – where the narrator almost ended his “kick ass life” by choking on a fry while driving – come off as too clever and cute and ruin it for me. It’s also a lame idea to have people go to your website for lyrics. That’s what the fuckin’ inside of the cover’s for. Am I wrong? –Todd Taylor (Diaphragm)


PLANET FOR TEXAS, A:
Sprechen Sie Rock?: CD
This starts out mighty fine – a hopped-up Zeke/Motorhead singalong ditty about truckstop speed, with sweltering breakaparts and neat dynamics – along the lines of what The Reaction put out a couple months back. Pleasant and ferocious enough to warrant a smile. Then, song by song, the band takes bigger nibbles at a big chunk of dry bubblegum; No Use For A Name-reminiscent pop punk or like all Digger albums, except Powerbait. I understand it's a trick to put toughness and grit into Beach Boys-derived pop punk – the Badtown Boys do exceptionally it well – but A Planet For Texas just don't stick it. I don't necessarily hate it, but songs like "The Day I Almost Died" – where the narrator almost ended his "kick ass life" by choking on a fry while driving – come off as too clever and cute and ruin it for me. It's also a lame idea to have people go to your website for lyrics. That's what the fuckin' inside of the cover's for. Am I wrong?
–Todd Taylor (Diaphragm)


PLANET SMASHERS:
Mighty: CD
EEK! EGADS!!!! HOW DID THIS SKA CRAP END UP IN MY HOUSE?!? QUICK, OPEN THE WINDOW!!!!! CHUCK THE FUCKER OUT BEFORE IT KILLS OFF THE GOLDFISH!!!!! –Jimmy Alvarado (www.stomprecords.com)


PLANKS:
Funeral Mouth: LP
Historically, the Germans have done chaotic, melodic hardcore on a level that other folks can only aspire to. A perusal of the Per Koro discography will quickly confirm this fact. And on their third LP, Mannheim’s Planks not only carry on the tradition of brilliant German hardcore, but continue to build on their incredibly solid foundation by incorporating more elements of modern black metal, atmospheric sludge, and somber instrumental passages that fuse perfectly to create what will no doubt be hailed a high point of the genre. Phenomenal. –Dave Williams (Golden Antenna, goldenantenna.com)


PLANO:
Brigadoon: CD
Weird soundtrack music for B-movie films that span the time of the ‘60s through the ‘80s. –Donofthedead (Mint)


PLASTER:
New World: CD
Marshall-saturated, grungy rock stuff from (according to the Day-Glo green sticker affixed to the front) members of Coffin Break, RC5, and Jet City Fix. More succinctly: think Soundgarden with huevos. Take that as you will. –Jimmy Alvarado (Flotation, no address)


PLASTIC CONSTELLATIONS, THE:
Mazatlan: CD
I realize that dissing this band is the equivalent, to some, of pissing napalm on one of Minnesota’s sacred indie cows, but this form of angular indie rock isn’t the one that does anything for me. The musical parts seem to change every half-second or so and there’s too much pointless noodling here (and frankly, the chops aren’t that technical); it’s basically the post-punk equivalent of prog rock. When combined with the vocals—which sometimes verge on rap and otherwise take their cues from all of post-core—there just isn’t much here for me to like. For fans of whatever post-core indie darling happens to be the rage right now. –Puckett (2024 Records)


PLASTIC CRIMEWAVE SOUND:
Shockwave Rider: 7"
I had some good expectations, since this outfit is fronted by the editor of Galactic Zoo Dossier. Unfortunately, this whole single is forgettable: noisy modern-day psychedelia with the vocals buried in the din. No hooks and absolutely nothing that stands out. –Matt Average (HoZac, hozacrecords.com)


PLASTIC CROSS:
Grayscale Rainbows: LP
Huh. One half of The Measure (SA) and a few other guys trying their hands at hardcore punk. If you can get past the album artwork, there’s some pretty good material here. (Craig Fu Yong, you are a pretty good vocalist and your lyrics aren’t half bad either—they’re actually really good—but this cover and such? Eeeek.) A little burly, a little frantic, a lot of songs—and a lot of thinking around corners and dodging the obvious. The dichotomy here: Grayscale Rainbows is full of traditional hardcore, but with an aversion to traditional verse-verse-chorus solutions; it’s hardcore full of little flourishes, little blips and bleeps that add depth and strength. Eighteen songs. I’m not much of a fan of hardcore these days, but Plastic Cross more than held my interest. Quality. –Keith Rosson (Don Giovanni)


PLASTIC FANTASTICS, THE:
Self-titled: CD
Sounds like about eighty percent Nine Inch Nails and twenty percent Wall of Voodoo. Those are amazing figures. Actually, i just made them up. BEST SONG: "God Damn Radio." BEST SONG TITLE: Either "God Damn Radio" or "Sorry I Killed You" FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Mastered by John Golden! Oh my God! Oh my God! –Rev. Norb (DNA Productions)


PLASTIC IDOLS:
Singles, Demos and Live: CD
The chorus of “I.U.D.,” the lead-off track on this retrospective of one of Houston’s more notable punk bands, has haunted my for years since the supremely cool Scott Pellet (head honcho over at the Big Boys’ tribute site www.soundonsound.org) put it on a comp cassette of old Texas punk rock he’d made. The problem is I know it’s lifted from another song, one that has been on the tip of my tongue for years but just refuses to make itself known. No matter, I guess. What’s important here is that this is chock full of some very nice, very quirky (and let’s be honest, it would really be quirky if it weren’t quirky, considering where these kids were from) Texas punk. Songs about the aforementioned contraceptive device, the advantages of being uncircumcised, Siamese love, and yellow stains are the order of the day, and the music is a nice example of that sweet spot in punk’s history where attitude was more important than adhering to some rigid template. Nice history lesson here, one definitely worthy of attention. –Jimmy Alvarado (hotboxreview@hotmail.com)


PLASTIC STARS:
Sheena Gets Around b/w Shut Up: 7"
In case you’re wondering whether the concept of bands with names like Plastic/Neon/Napalm Hearts/Stars/Moons/Clovers doing songs with titles like “Sheena Gets Around” has any legs, i will duly report that the answer is still apparently “yes.” Sounds kinda like 20/20, but with punkish energy and impatience, and borrowing Helen Love’s keyboard (likely due to the punkish impatience). “Sheena Gets Around” seemed like it was over by the time i had gotten back comfy on the couch, but there were boobs on the innersleeve so perhaps i wasn’t paying proper attention. BEST SONG: “Sheena Gets Around” BEST SONG TITLE: “Sheena Gets Around” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Run-off groove numbers seem to indicate that this record was manufactured at United Record Pressing, but when i hold it up to the light, it isn’t all brown and see-thru. What gives? –Rev. Norb (No Front Teeth)


PLATE-O-SHRIMP:
The Brunch of the Living Dead: CD
I liked the two fast songs here, “Boss of Me” and “D-R-U-N-K,” but the rest came off as not-particularly-exciting mid-tempo rock/punk. –Jimmy Alvarado (Plate-O-Shrimp)


PLATE-O-SHRIMP/THE UNSTUCK:
Split: 7”
Plate-o-Shrimp: Their website describes them as “high-energy punk-style/power-pop rock,” and I guess that’s accurate, based on what’s here. The one original and cover of DOA’s “Fuck You” here ain’t bad, but not quite memorable, either. The Unstuck: Punk rock, poppy in an un-bad way, catchy in a head-bobbing way. The Unstuck win this round. –Jimmy Alvarado (www.plate-o-shrimp.com)


PLATEAUS:
Do It for You: 7”
Unabashed Velvets worship abounds throughout this. Not a bad thing, if done well, and while their lyrics don’t appear at first blush to have the same focus on the seedier side of life, they do make good use of repetitive riffs and stomping rhythms that are more “Waiting for the Man” than “Venus in Furs.” Is it genre defining? Probably not, but I’ll take a couple of these over one more NOFX clone any goddamned time. –Jimmy Alvarado (HoZac)


PLATES:
The Garth Butcher: 7” EP
Plates, by way of Buffalo, NY provide us with three songs on this here 7” titled The Garth Butcher EP (in an earlier incarnation, the band apparently went by the moniker Garth Butcher, named after a retired professional hockey player), released on Feral Kid Records. Side one’s track, “Sentimental Jenny Jones Fodder Has Been Around for Fucking Ever,” has a taut, tense feel to it, observing the quiet/loud sensibilities of big fuzz forebears Dinosaur Jr and Sonic Youth, though here like a heavier bit of shoegaze, not quite as heavy as say, Tad or the Melvins but fuzzy, heavy shoegaze nonetheless. Second side takes a dip, in my opinion. “Pop Country Blowjobs” with its hollow drumming and “It’s all Billy Joel to me, motherfucker” chorus could have probably been left off of the record and no one would have missed it. Things pick up a little with the next song, “Romanian Rich,” which, despite its bleating vocals, brings to mind Poison Idea, ‘80s hardcore where the rock and roll is still evident. I’d like to hear more “Sentimental Jenny Jones…” and less punk-by-numbers, and I think Plates has it in them to do it. –Jeff (Feral Kid)


PLATES:
Taking Pictures of Poor People: 7” EP
A-Side: L7-style hypnotic sludge riffin’ with a dude who sounds like he listened to a lot of Second Wind. B-side has two more tracks that are nary a whit faster, but definitely heavier. –Jimmy Alvarado (Feral Kid)


PLATES:
Self-titled: LP
A band that’s not easy to pin down stylistically (which is a great thing). A lot of noise and weird sounds bubbling up in the songs, and despite all that, the songs are catchy. The riffs are solid and have this winding and meandering way at times; others that are a little more direct (“Sociology 101”).  Then sometimes they throw in some sounds from left field, putting a different feel in the music. Mix up garage rock, psych, hardcore punk, and you get something along the lines of Plates, though they’re not that narrowly defined. A song like “Arrows” hearken back to early to mid-‘80s hardcore, where the song goes back and forth between mid to fast pacing and builds and builds as the song winds on. “Local Legend” has a manic energy. It’s fast and speedy, then slow and lumbering with an almost “blehhh” vibe akin to a string of overcast days. Their cover of Gun Club’s “Sex Beat” is so-so, but the rest on here are worth your time and attention, especially the awesome “Day Planner,” which has a psych vibe crossed with a mid-tempo hardcore temp and execution. Hearing bands like this, where they’re taking a few genres and mashing them up into something new and different, make me wonder what sort of new sounds and styles await us on the other side. –Matt Average (Big Neck, bigneckrecords.com)


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