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One Punks Guide to Pinball, by Kayla Greet
Razorcake #92
Spokenest, Gone, Gone, Gone LP
Pinned In Place, Ghostwritten By LP
Razorcake #91


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No Idea Records

Record Reviews

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POPULAR SHAPES / THE INTELLIGENCE:
Split: 7"
The Popular Shapes: These guys are starting to grow on me and I think the lower dosage of only two songs serves as a bit of an inoculation to their full-length. You know how the Tasmanian Devil, when he’s moving really quickly, his body is just swirls with the occasional limb poking out? That’s what the Popular Shapes sound like to me. They seem to spin songs so quickly and in such a tight circle that it’s sometimes hard to hear what’s really going on. I can easily imagine them great live – if they’re the whirlwind counterpart to these two cuts – sharing the stage with The Tyrades. The Intelligence: Very Dieter-rock and Teutonic-sounding. Fronted by an android-voiced dude and framed by iceberg-y and cold knife guitars, metronomic drumming, and jutting angularity, it’s a wee bit too arty and a wee not as rocking for my tastes. “Cold Calling” reminds me of the song on the Repo Man soundtrack, the one that kept on repeating “Pablo Picasso was never called an asshole,” just not as catchy –todd (Dirtnap)


POPULAR SHAPES, THE/INTELLIGENCE, THE: :
Split: 7"
The Popular Shapes sound kind of like the Minutemen, and when I say that they sound like the Minutemen, I mean that they sound like the parts of the songs that were really disjointed. The main difference between the Minutemen and the Popular Shapes is that no matter how noisy and abrasive the Minutemen got, all you had to do was wait a few seconds for everything to mesh together and they would rule your school. The Intelligence played in the background while I ate pizza. –Josh (Dirtnap)


POPULAR SHAPES/INTELLIGENCE:
Split: 7"
Seattle slaps us once again with a double whammy. The Popular Shapes spin you on a tilt-a-whirl of pretty indescribable sound. Honestly, I can’t really put my finger in it. It really is like a carnival ride. The guitar and melody of their two songs leave you dizzy and wanting cotton candy. If you have enough balance to flip the record over, The Intelligence will soothe your sixties sweet tooth. All in all, it’s a pretty sweet ride. –erika (Dirtnap)


POPULATION:
Artifacts: 7” EP
Contrary to what is apparently popular belief, and all too often seems common practice in the modern era, punks in the earliest periods didn’t limit their exposure and efforts to these preconceived, rigid pigeonholes—and those who did usually moved on in short order to whatever next bullshit trend was just up the road. Doesn’t take much searchin’ to find flyers or adverts with what would today be inconceivable gig lineups: a Black Flag, Social Distortion, and Top Jimmy & The Rhythm Pigs bill was just as prone to occur as the bassist for über-thrashers Wasted Youth moonlighting with tribal desert-tinged artpunk merchants SavageRepublic. Those with any sense knew, and know, to expand their tastes, not be afraid to step outside of their comfort zones and strive to find new ways to raise a ruckus. What you have here is some Chicago hardcore cats doin’ just that, in this case tradin’ in 1-2-1-2 hyper-speed drum beats for loping bass lines and more atmospheric climes. Their influences are right up front—post-punk, early U.S. death rock, U.K. goth, Sisters of Mercy, Joy Division—but they deliver three solid tunes that stand on their own merits, retaining some punk edge amidst slower, dance-friendly beats that don’t rely on barre chord barrages. This is a great opening salvo as far as debut releases go, and here’s hoping a full-length isn’t too far off in the distance. –jimmy (BLVD)


POPULATION:
Self-titled: 7”
Late ‘70s post-punk worshippers. Sometimes I wonder if culture actually stopped in the ‘80s and no one ever noticed, like time isn’t a widening gyre, but a cylinder and we reached the end like thirty years ago. That is the thesis of this record, as far as I can gather. Warbly vocals, tinted with keyboards and drums from a dance party. A pale imitation of a genre that has had much more interesting records that utilized the same formulas. –Bryan Static (Hozac, hozacrecords.com, no address)


POPULATION:
Beyond the Pale: LP
I really dug their first EP on HoZac a good while back, which was some prime Joy Division worship in its own right. Haven’t heard anything from ‘em since, so just how marked the leap forward here is a bit of a surprise. Echoes of that early influence are still very much apparent, but they’ve upped the gloom exponentially and added some other interesting bits—a little bit of very early Sisters Of Mercy here, and more than a little early Death In June there, all of it steeped in a nice sheen of 4AD ambience—to round the sound out quite nicely. While not as sonically aggressive as some of the retro-nouveau death rock outfits making the rounds in recent years, they more than make up for it in the way the sheer oppressiveness of the overall mood is counterbalanced by loping bass lines, alternating dancey and quasi-tribal drumming, and ethereal synth lines. The results are superb, handily standing toe-to-toe with the heavy hitters of the much ballyhooed first post-punk/goth go-’round.  –jimmy (Mass Media, massmediarecords.com)


POPULATION REDUCTION:
At the Throats of Man Forever: CD
I am guilty of buying stuff for my personal collection and not making an effort to review it in this here mag. I saw PR back in early December of last year. They’re a two man grind, death, metal, punk margarita blender that truly impressed me. Straight-up guitar and drums with dueling vocals was a hoot. Also included in the mix was their great sense of humor. I was sold. I bought the tour 7” and the CD and for some reason (I think I ran out of money) I didn’t buy a shirt. Got to try and support the touring bands! Well, anyway. This is some damn good stuff if you like your cookie monster and rectum ripped screaming vocals. Drums that blast away with double bass drums with cymbals and drum heads pounded with power and precision. I witnessed it first hand and he was barefoot too. The guitars have the requisite chunk and heavy riffage. Nothing soft here. This is coming from two guys who were super nice and friendly when I met them and they morphed into this madness once on stage. –don (Tankcrimes)


POPULATION REDUCTION:
At the Throats of Man Forever: CD
I am guilty of buying stuff for my personal collection and not making an effort to review it in this here mag. I saw PR back in early December of last year. They’re a two man grind, death, metal, punk margarita blender that truly impressed me. Straight-up guitar and drums with dueling vocals was a hoot. Also included in the mix was their great sense of humor. I was sold. I bought the tour 7” and the CD and for some reason (I think I ran out of money) I didn’t buy a shirt. Got to try and support the touring bands! Well, anyway. This is some damn good stuff if you like your cookie monster and rectum ripped screaming vocals. Drums that blast away with double bass drums with cymbals and drum heads pounded with power and precision. I witnessed it first hand and he was barefoot too. The guitars have the requisite chunk and heavy riffage. Nothing soft here. This is coming from two guys who were super nice and friendly when I met them and they morphed into this madness once on stage. –don (Tankcrimes)


POPULATION REDUCTION:
At the Throats of Man Forever: 7"
The music on here is ruling. Great riffs and drumming, with excellent production. Unfortunately, the vocals are just too low and guttural for my taste. Fans of early Napalm Death and other early death metal/grind will love this! First three hundred are on green/black splatter vinyl for the scum. If you love those low vocals, this is gonna be about as good as you will find. –frame (Tankcrimes)


POPULATION REDUCTION:
Each Birth a New Disaster: LP
If you haven’t heard the magic of this guitar and drums duo in person or on recording and you are a fan of metal, grind, death and such, you are missing out. This is the band’s first full-length, showcasing their brand of death metal, grindcore, and thrash attack which continues on the greatness of their At the Throats of Man Forever EP that came out a year or two back. Heavy riffs, blast beats, and everything in between are thrown out at you. There is no lack of heaviness and speed from these two men from the Bay area. The music will make you bang your head, mosh, slam, and, for stoner types, maybe smoke one. It makes you feel like they are taking you for a ride; first going slow, then fast, and finally even faster, about to crash but still in control. Interested yet? But on top of all that, they have humor. Make fun of the Amish? Old people? SUV owners? Black metal fans? All of the above. They don’t seem to narrow themselves to what topics they cover in their lyrics. Overall, this LP has shown me how much I really do like this band. After seeing them live and hearing them recorded before, they surely raised the bar on this one. –don (Tankcrimes)


POPZILLAS, THE:
The Incredible Adventures of Pandora Pop: CD
This is really unique and interesting. As far as I can tell from the translated-from-German one sheet, this is a German band playing a concept album that I think is supposed to be a soundtrack to a Japanese manga story. It doesn’t make any sense, but I like it. It’s really pro-produced sounding pop with ethereal female vocals. It’s nice, I could listen to this a few times for sure, I just don’t really understand what they’re trying to do. –ben (Wolverine)


PORCELAIN BOYS:
Away Awhile: CD
This is up to its neck in All worship—noodley guitar playing, thumping bass, and hooks galore. While not quite as proficient or complex in delivery as All, or the Descendents, the band is catchy in its own right and the songs are well made and well played. If yer into the pop punk thang but prefer a bit more sophistication than the average Queers/NOFX Xerox clone is dishin’ out, this’ll definitely hit the spot. –jimmy (SP, sp-records.com)


PORCELAIN GOD:
Home Taping Is Killing Music: CD
Super-homemade CD of “anti-hardcore psychedelic punk” recorded in 1982, that sounds like some kind of sub-Beefheart twenty-somethings with a $25 budget for instruments and recording. Historically valuable, perhaps, but not in a Killed By Death way. And entertaining, but not in a 72-minute way. –Cuss Baxter (Slutfish)


PORCH GHOULS:
Self-titled: 10” EP
Down’n’dirty, lowest of the fi, dirt-dragged gospel swamp boogie blues. They’ve got their arms around quaalude sorrow and amphetamine burns, meaning they’ve sizzled through the highs and embrace the lows (or at least sound like it. They may be upright citizens). It’s also the first band I’ve ever heard that plays the suitcase; a 50’s dealie with a hole for a mic and a foot pedal and a tambourine attached. This slab is mostly covers and who they pay homage to is telling: Hound Dog Taylor, Willie Dixon, Little Richard, and R.L. Burnside. Listen to this long enough, and I feel my teeth start loosening and I keep reaching for an unmarked mason jar to swallow my fears and troubles away. The Porch Ghouls are in the same base camp as The Oblivions and the Gibson Brothers; lost souls drowning for your salvation. Good stuff. –todd (Orange)


PORCH GHOULS:
Self-titled : 10" EP
Down’n’dirty, lowest of the fi, dirt-dragged gospel swamp boogie blues. They’ve got their arms around quaalude sorrow and amphetamine burns, meaning they’ve sizzled through the highs and embrace the lows (or at least sound like it. They may be upright citizens). It’s also the first band I’ve ever heard that plays the suitcase; a 50’s dealie with a hole for a mic and a foot pedal and a tambourine attached. This slab is mostly covers and who they pay homage to is telling: Hound Dog Taylor, Willie Dixon, Little Richard, and R.L. Burnside. Listen to this long enough, and I feel my teeth start loosening and I keep reaching for an unmarked mason jar to swallow my fears and troubles away. The Porch Ghouls are in the same base camp as The Oblivions and the Gibson Brothers; lost souls drowning for your salvation. Good stuff. –todd (Orange)


PORCH MOB:
Can of Worms: CD
I thought I liked this until I realized it just kept putting me to sleep. I needed the sleep though. –megan (Self-released)


PORCH MOB:
Can of Worms: CD
I thought I liked this until I realized it just kept putting me to sleep. I needed the sleep though. –megan (Can of Worms, no address)


PORCHARITAS:
Get Wasted With…: 7” EP
The tiger-striped fruit of the perennially-fertile Bobbyteens tree blooms once again in the bendy-straw-enhanced form of this three-girls-and-a-guy-drummer Hunstville quartet. Song topics include—not particularly surprisingly—pillow fights, drinking, and love’s labors lost. For some reason, the band is unable to sell me on attitudinal claims like “IT’S GONNA BE A MAKEOUT NIGHT!” with full sincerity; “Get Wasted,” however, beams forth with full authenticity. I’ll drink girlie drinks to that! BEST SONG: “Get Wasted” BEST SONG TITLE: “Pillow Fight” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Record comes complete with Porcharita drink recipe and conveniently attached bendy straw. –norb (Vertical House, theverticalhouse.com)


PORCUPINE:
I See Sound: EP
Really enjoying this EP. Porcupine is a tight three-piece band from Wisconsin. Their sound reminds me of Queens Of The Stone Age if Queens recorded live as a three piece and didn’t layer their songs. They also bring to mind a lot of the classic indie bands of the ‘90s, like Sebadoh, Fugazi, and Shellac. The songs have super catchy vocals and the music goes from a pop structure to these angular parts that jam for a bit. It keeps all types of attention spans interested. Well worth checking out. The LP is limited to five hundred on white vinyl.  –Ryan Nichols (Riot House)


PORN STARS OF HORROR:
From Love Letters to the Morgue: CD
Any band that can seriously sing the lyrics “We are the Porn Stars of Horror! We are blood drunk!” is cool in my book. This straightforward horror hardcore band with dual male and female vocals covers all the usual territory: Bride of Frankenstein, zombies, murder, etc. When the horror half of the band’s moniker is set aside in favor of the porn half, the digressions into gang rape and blue balls ballads get a bit tedious, and I could do without the occasional ham-fisted acoustic bit, but those are thankfully outnumbered by the more exciting, rocking tunes. –mp (1332)


PORN STARS OF HORROR , THE/ POTBELLY / SKEXIES, THE:
This That and Some Other Shit: 3-way split: CD
The cover of this CD’s glossy one-panel digipack looks like art that was lifted from some Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fan fiction that my roommate would blog about. It’s some Quincy punk male vulture and male warthog with female werewolf and female fish creature hanging on them. This looked like complete shit. In conjunction with the bands’ names, I was expecting complete shit. I don’t give a fuck if I come off like the PC Police on this, but the artwork, some of the song titles, and the band names, to a certain extent, reeked of reinforcing gender roles and stereotypes—and the lyrics on some songs reinforced this: these three bands that seem to revel in being shit, with a desire to be offensive. All three sections of the disc begin with malicious statements about the proceeding band, with a declaration about the whole disc being shitty at the outset. PSOH: Horror punk with hardcore punk songs, both male and female vocals. One of the male vocalists has a hankering to sound like Glenn Danzig. I hafta admit that their sexual juvenilia in the song “Touch” made me laugh, with its words of butthole touching in something of a romantic context. Perhaps the worst “love” song ever. Skexies: Male- and female-fronted Violent Society type ‘90s crap of a lower tier with metal bits. I thought it was harmless until the song “Sweet Tits.” The song’s chorus has the remarkable refrain of, “Slut, Slut, Dirty Slut, Dirty Whore Go Fuck Yourself,” sung by both vocalists. The song also has a line about shoving “black cocks” in one’s ass being a “blast.” Maybe I’m being sensitive here, but I’m calling racism based on the fact that the line is meant to offend whomever the song is about. They could just be the thoughtless words of a jilted meathead, but that shit is fucking too much for me. Potbelly: Pretty sure this is a live set. All male band. Shitty, unmemorable drunk punk hardcore bullshit. “Jaimee the Cock-Blocking Lesbian” is one of their songs. “Monkey-Fuckers from Mars” is another one. Don’t forget “Alcoholicide.” Come to your own conclusions on that one. –Vincent Battilana (PB / P.I.G.)


PORN STARS OF HORROR / STUPID IN STEREO:
Split: 7”
For a band with one of the worst names ever, the Porn Stars Of Horror are surprisingly rad. Straightforward horror hardcore that gets bonus points for doing something so mind-blowingly obvious that I can’t comprehend how it has never been done before (or how, if it has been done before, I’ve missed it): they turn the “verata clatoo nicto” chant from Army of Darkness into a song. Of course, they lose major points not only because they did not use the official spelling of the chant (which originally appeared in The Day the Earth Stood Still), but because they chant the three words in the wrong fucking order (should be “klaatu barada nikto”). If you’re keeping track, that puts them into negative points. If you’re going to mess with nerd stuff, you best do it right. Stupid In Stereo’s side is a match thematically, even if their pop punk sound doesn’t mesh. They pay tribute to Ash and the evil dead with a song called “Tree Love.” And they spell everything correctly. –mp (Unrepentant)


PORN STARS OF HORROR, THE:
Sex, Drugs, Violence and Sodomy: 7”
The Porn Stars Of Horror continues to perplex me. I hate them and I love them. Thematically, they have two sides. The side I love is the rad, anthemic songs about horror flicks. On this particular record, they do a super fast jam about the movie Child’s Play. The combo of throat-ripping female vocals and deeper, more sing-songy dude voice is used to perfect effect. I’m way into this kind of thing. But then there’s the thematic side of this band that I hate: the puerile, porn side. I’m not against sex songs, I just require that they either make me laugh or arouse me or outrage me or something, not just make me groan, which is what the song “Touch” did. It’s about butthole touching. To make matters more complicated, the band also has two sides musically: the straight-up punk rock side and the acoustic side. I really wish someone would steal their acoustic guitar.  –mp (1332)


PORNO POP-UPS:
Self-titled: Cassette
Talk about a Google search wormhole… deal with looking for a band and label whose primary words are “porno” and “fuck.” The Porno Pop-Ups hail from Finland and keep warm by pushing “Record” on a boombox and wailing away in an echo chamber. The groove is repetitive, loud, and barely held together by their shambolic drum beat. It’s refreshing in its pure brattiness—in a genre that has been overwhelmed with Guitar Center clerks playing psychedelia… maybe someone will pay their way to Gonerfest.  –Matt Seward (Fuck CDs)


PORNSTORE JANITOR:
Porn Again: CD
Really good musical melding of the Dwarves and early Poison Idea, but their weak attempts and shock value are unnecessary and boring. Damn good thing they were smart enough not to include a lyric sheet. –jimmy (Scooch Pooch)


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