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· 1:Punk Parenthood for the Sleep Deprived
· 2:#330 with Craven Rock
· 3:One Punk’s Guide to Poetry
· 4:#331 with Mike Faloon and Todd Taylor
· 5:#332 with Kurt Morris


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Razorcake #81
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Nights and Days in a Dark Carnival by Craven Rock
Chantey Hook, Underground 7" *Limited Color Vinyl


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Record Reviews

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SHANG-A-LANG / JONESIN’:
Split: 7”EP
Shang-a-Lang: Hang in with me on this. Imagine if the Dead Milkmen weren’t goofy, and instead of the goofiness was a self-deprecating earnestness. (All of this through a DIY, 2008, slightly Crimpshrine’d punk rock lens, mind you.) I mean, shit alive, the Dead Milkmen were catchy as hell, made you sing along to things you wouldn’t necessarily come up with singing by yourself, and it’s cathartic to scream along to. They’re the slightly stained, well-worn T-shirt to the Milkmen’s paisley shirt with a collar. Land of Enchantment, indeed. Jonesin’: From the ashes of Down In The Dumps. Sounds like Dukes Of Hillsborough by way of Gunmoll: burlaped voice, like someone’s throat is a bedroll of knives, dirt, and glass shards. Florida-ation facial grown rock by way of NYC that’s working on, and beginning to succeed, in sounding epic. Not bad at all. –Todd Taylor (Dirt Cult/ Dead Broke)


SHANG-A-LANG / SEX ADVICE:
Split: 7”EP
Shang-a-Lang: Dudes are bummed, but somehow turn songs of bummerdom and “I’m-about-to-crack” into these finger-snapping, duct tape anthems of basement salvation. Don’t know if I want them to get happier since their pain is my gain. Any sort of life-issue resolution may make their songs suck… Anyhow, I may be committing some sort of sin here, but I think if they took a sock or two off the microphones and took the sleeping bag out of the bass drum when they recorded, it’d punch up the recording a bit. The songs shine through, though. Sex Advice: Don’t want to force them in a place they’d find uncomfortable, but I think they’re the missing link between high-quality Queers (Love Songs for the Retarded) and Black Flag (all the way up to the B-side of Damaged). Bubble gum with jagged edges that wants to kill you. Nice split.  –Todd Taylor (Repulsion)


SHANG-A-LANG / TURKISH TECHNO:
Split : 7”
Turkish Techno’s first appearance on vinyl and, boy, is it a great start. Like a drunken boy’s choir of Riverside, these four dudes belt out two songs of Leatherface/Stiff Little Fingers/Jawbreaker punk rock. A mainstay in today’s DIY Riverside scene, these guys always put on a lively, energetic show. Shang-A-Lang: these Las Crucians know how to put together poppy, self-examining songs of substance. Two more songs that will make your work week a little more tolerable or your hangover a little less excruciating. Highly recommended. –Daryl Gussin (Muy Auténtico, myspace.com/totallyofficial)


SHANG-A-LANG / TURKISH TECHNO:
: Split 7”
Turkish Techno: In this post Hot Water Music world, it’s difficult to tread water in that band’s wake. But, Turkish Techno pulls it off by casting their net into good, old-fashioned hardcore aggression’s waters. While it sounds like several contemporary bands are deep frying frozen fishsticked of parts of HWM’s catalog in an attempt to recreate previous magic while ultimately sounding greasy and clogged, Turkish Techno adds the acidic lime of bands like early Black Flag to “cook” the raw fish. A ceviche, if you will. A delicious one. Shang-a-Lang: Still choke me up more than just a little when I listen to them or see them live. They play with an earnestness usually reserved to musicians ten or fifteen years younger, the music is the perfect sloppy tightness, and, having personally put all of their songs onto a more versatile digital format, I can support the thesis that even their anti-work songs made a day of pick axing all the more tolerable, bordering on pleasurable. Duct tapedly awesome. –Todd Taylor ((Muy Autentico, myspace.com/totallyofficial)


SHANG-A-LANG: ERROR:
You Cannot Add Yourself as a Friend: 7" EP
Even though I’d never heard Shang-a-Lang before this 7”, I felt like saying, “Hello, old friend.” They come across as a comfortable quilt of bands I already enjoy muchly. The good news is that they don’t remind me too much of just one band, nor do I suspect they’ve got musical photocopy machines tucked away in their back pockets. Their music musical radar blips in the storm front populated by Scared of Chaka, The Bananas, ADD/C and Dead Things (and it’s a toss up if they’ve ever heard those bands). It’s not as straight ahead as initial listenings would indicate, easy-to-sing-along-to DIY punk, that’s as fun to listen to, I imagine, as it was fun to make. It’s also super easy to smile along to. 300 made. Hand numbered. Good news. –Todd Taylor (Dirt Cult)


SHANGHAI RIVER:
Demo: CDEP
Panning for gold is all about the promise of future riches. This demo is muddy, murky, dirty socks, Bill Beltone guitar, and whacked-sponge-sounding drums. However, if your ears are used sorting out the slime and slurry, finely blown out after years of basement and backyard shows, one can recognize the faintest glimmers—future nuggets—in the shape of the songwriting. ShanghaiRiver has that; a nice basic shape. Sonically sounds like Frankie Stubbs with mumps or the dude from Fat Albert that no one could understand—not just the vocals, almost everything—leading the Chop Sakis’ first practice. Yeah, I’d listen to ‘em after the demo takes a shower, gets cleaned up and smells better. –Todd Taylor (myspace.com/shanghairiver)


SHANGHAI RIVER:
Binary Code Will Enslave All of Humankind: LP
Right off the bat, I should disclose that this band contains a Razorcake columnist. It really doesn’t matter though, because he seems to me like the kind of guy who would rather appreciate honesty than ass kissing. Wooo! Good thing I can do both now because I love this record! It’s almost scary how so many of the songs on this record are situations that I’m dealing with in my life (particularly the ones pertaining to getting old and still playing in bands and partying). The tunes are sloppy and fun (also attributes I’ve been told describe me). I had a smile on my face the whole time (except on the one about the guy who got trampled at Wal-Mart on Black Friday. That was sad.). Get the record and join the party... At least until you bleed out your butt. Then it’s time to stop. –Ty Stranglehold (ADD)


SHANGHAI WIRES:
Upsetter Democracy: LP
Fans of The Stitches, listen up! Did you spend the mid- to late-‘90s as I did, scarfing up every 7” release from Witmer/Lohrman and company like it was gold? And, have you been in Stitches withdrawal ever since they went inactive, at least on vinyl? Then Shanghai Wires may well be the band for you. They may be from England, but they have clearly soaked up the vintage Southern California punk rock vinyl so much that it courses through their veins as much as any of their native country’s fine bands do. If I have any criticisms about this at all, it would be that I wish the mix had a little more bottom end to it. Other than that, I’ve played this many times through and it more than holds its own. –chris (May Cause Dizziness, mcdrecords.com)


SHANGHAI WIRES:
Black Waves: LP
Snotty ‘77-style street punk. The opening track sounds unmistakably like Defiance’s “No Future, No Hope.” Song topics range from sinking Kamikaze ships, spitting razor blades, and several references to radio masts. Rock’n’roll guitar bends and single syllable vocal snivels. Surprisingly, I really like the drum sound on this record. If you’re looking for something fun to skate to: this is your album. –Guest Contributor (Pure Punk)


SHANGRI LOWS, THE:
Self-titled: CD
I feel like I’m predisposed to like this. A little birdie told me they thought this was Travis from Asshole Parade, and I agree. He sings about San Pedro (though not the one dear to me) and playing the Fireside Bowl, so everything added up to me liking it, but I just didn’t. It’s 4 track recordings of two people that might be decent if they were more flushed out, but as it is, it just sort of fell flat for me. –Megan Pants (Go Zombie!, gozombie.com)


SHANGRI-BLAHS, THE:
Self-titled: 7” EP
Catchy Finnish pop punk that avoids the “we really love the Ramones” trappings and instead rely on solid hooks and the occasional sax solo. Good stuff.  –Jimmy Alvarado (The Shangri-Blahs, facebook.com/theshangriblahs)


SHANK / THE ENDLESS BLOCKADE:
Split: 7”
A good pairing for a split, since bass player Andy Nolan is/was in both bands. Limited to three hundred copies pressed total and one hundred mailorder copies are on white vinyl with special hand stenciled second cover and a bonus 7” with stenciled band logos. That second 7” is unplayable but looks cool, if you were wondering. Shank: They do a cover of Citizen’s Arrest Number that has the same production sound of the last two Victims records. Absolutely powerful and yet raw at the same time. One of the last songs recorded before their break up. The Endless Blockade: A cover of Judge’s “Fed Up” is presented on their side. The band definitely put their own spin on their contribution. It’s a dirtier and harsher version which, I believe, is much faster than the original. –Donofthedead (Schizophrenic)


SHANKS, THE:
Big Feelin: 7"
Blown-out garage punk from this Nebraska band. Seems like the type of thing that any fan of In the Red Records or the review page at Terminal Boredom would love. If you have got a lotta P.Trash or Solid Sexie Lovie Doll singles in your collection, you will wanna be all over this. As good as most of those bands and from the Midwest, to boot.  –Mike Frame (Boom Chick)


SHANKS, THE:
I’d Fuck Me: Cassette
This is a rarities and B-sides collection by Omaha-based garage rockers The Shanks. Their specialty is the seedier edge of the subgenre, very reminiscent of The Spider Babies. Fans of heavily distorted garage sounds with gritty, sexually-infused lyrics will dig them for sure. From the mildly perverted cover art to the nifty cassette shell, it is releases like this one that are making me a big fan of the tape resurgence. It’s also cool that a download card is included. Fun, sick, and mesmerizing, The Shanks are like Christian TV minus the Christians. How’s that for an endorsement? –Art Ettinger (Rainy Road)


SHANKS, THE:
Backstabber: 7”
Squealing, feedback-drenched guitars and howling, screeching vocals, this is exquisitely intense. The Shanks’ songs on this here 7” sound like some long-lost nugget of Northwestern garage punk: Wipers weirdness, dirtier and nastier than Mudhoney, faster and more ferocious than Murder City Devils. This is a ripper. Comes highly recommended.  –Jeff Proctor (Tic Tac Totally)


SHANNON AND THE CLAMS:
I Wanna Go Home: CD
Bastardized ‘50s riffs seems to be flavor of the month, but Shannon And The Clams are having a lot of fun with it and are able to bring the listener along. The guitars are laden with reverb, as are the vocals some of the time. This dynamic creates a bit of necessary chaos for a band that likely sounds really good live. “Troublemaker” and “The Warlock in the Woods” are mid-tempo ‘50s rock while “Blast Me to Bermuda” gets into faster realms. There are slower songs that are well done, but become a bit tedious after two minutes. That two minute pop standard must occasionally be adhered to. The songs, as they appear on the album, are occasionally grouped too closely by tempo, which is a shame, because the diversity in speed would have been an opportunity to create a better flow for the album. But all in all, the songwriting is solid. It’s a great record for fans of the new old. –Billups Allen (1-2-3-4-Go!)


SHANNON AND THE CLAMS:
Ozma: 7” single
Throwback to the late ‘50s/early ‘60s rock’n’roll sound. Retro sounds for today’s nostalgic-minded youth. “Ozma” is the better of the two here. It’s a song about a dog who has passed away. (I heard that the first song Pearl Jam had a hit with was about a dog as well.) “Apples and oranges here,” I can hear you shout. The flipside, a cover the “Muppet Babies” theme song, is a total throwaway. –Matt Average (1-2-3-4-Go!, 1234gorecords.com)


SHANNONWRIGHT:
Dyed in the Wool: CD
This is a soft, lilting, well-orchestrated musical marvel that’s celestial and brightly sparkling but dark, pained, and morosely dismal as well. It’s sonically sparse, yet intricately detailed, a soul-soothing, spiritually moving collage of sweet swirling-in-the-breeze songs richly laden with the deepest of heart-wrenching emotion. ShannonWright is a uniquely gifted vocalist/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who’s illustriously comparable to PJ Harvey, an all-acoustic Siouxsie, and a female impersonator Nick Drake. She’s absolutely the most articulate composer since Ludwig van Beethoven or, at the very least, Lennon and McCartney. Damn, I’m gettin’ all gooey and fuzzy on the inside, ‘cause my ears are irreversibly transfixed, dazzled, hypnotized, and deeply in love with the seductively bewitching sounds of Dyed In The Wool. –Roger Moser Jr. (Quarterstick)


SHANNONWRIGHT:
Dyed in the Wool: CD
This is a soft, lilting, well-orchestrated musical marvel that’s celestial and brightly sparkling but dark, pained, and morosely dismal as well. It’s sonically sparse, yet intricately detailed, a soul-soothing, spiritually moving collage of sweet swirling-in-the-breeze songs richly laden with the deepest of heart-wrenching emotion. ShannonWright is a uniquely gifted vocalist/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who’s illustriously comparable to PJ Harvey, an all-acoustic Siouxsie, and a female impersonator Nick Drake. She’s absolutely the most articulate composer since Ludwig van Beethoven or, at the very least, Lennon and McCartney. Damn, I’m gettin’ all gooey and fuzzy on the inside, ‘cause my ears are irreversibly transfixed, dazzled, hypnotized, and deeply in love with the seductively bewitching sounds of Dyed In The Wool. –Guest Contributor (Quarterstick)


SHAPE BREAKER / FUCK MOUNTAIN:
Split: 7”
Two post-punk jammers with traces of goth and hardcore. Philadelphia’s Shapebreaker cover the A-side with “Spellbound” while Dublin’s FuckMountain defend the rear with “Idle Hands.” Both songs are equipped with simple riffs, intense solos, and delayed vocals. Listening to this makes me want to break some glassware and kick a door down, preferably at the same time.  –Alanna Why (Gary, garyrecords.com, garyrcrds@gmail.com)


SHAPES, THE:
Songs for Sensible People: CD
The Shapes are another criminally obscure band hailing from England who apparently left a lasting enough impression that someone cared about, as well as remembered, them so that this compendium of their recorded output could see the light of day, and the punk world is a much better place as a result. One of the architects of what later became “punk pathetique” (think Toy Dolls, Splodgenessabounds and the like), they married to some very silly subject matter (how silly? How do “Jennifer the Conifer,” which is a love song to a tree, or “{I Saw} Batman {in the Laundrette}” strike you?) to the punk template and came up with catchy songs that weren’t afraid to be just as flat-out funny as sound pissed off. Their “Wot’s For Lunch, Mum (Not Beans Again!)” is a bonafide classic and its inclusion here is more than enough reason to pick this up and provide it with a properly reverential spot in the ol’ collection. One more thing: the liner notes are a fuckin’ riot: “The pressure of drink, women, and rock‘n’roll debauchery totally failing to manifest in their lives began to affect the band badly….Dave began wearing a curly wig and false mustache, claiming that he was really Carlos Santana and that, therefore, he should get double helpings of ‘eggs, beans and chips’ when the band stopped off for a nosh…. Brian demanded that his knees be removed so that he could have the front of his legs paved. It was all getting too much….” –Jimmy Alvarado (Overground)


SHAPESHIFTER:
Self-titled: 7”
Like The Degenerics, this is another band that my friend Joe had sent to me not knowing I had gotten this for review. Unlike The Degenerics, I’m not really that into what I hear here. I like what he sent; I listened to it over and over. Wait, I’m a complete moron. It’s the same exact release. I listened to Joe’s copy on my little jambox and I listened to mine on my laptop. World of difference to me. What I thought was tinny sounding wasn’t at all. Really lyricaL crust that isn’t without melody. If, in the song “Feeding the Beast,” the lyrics actually correctly spelled when it says, “as the bones enrich the soil under our feat,” then I applaud you on your word play (it easily could go over the top, but is always well-balanced, and not a groan was induced). It was suggested that this is reminiscent of Aus Rotten, but seeing as I’ve avoided them for (apparently misguided) presumptions, I’m not sure. If they are (but I think I might just give Aus Rotten a chance now). A strong release with a cover photo of old cars that had me mesmerized. –Megan Pants (Don Giovanni)


SHARDS:
Self-titled: LP
Dark, atypical hardcore with even darker lyrics about suicide, “breeders,” religion and so on. The songs often have a herky-jerky quality to their structure and a surprising “big” sound to them. They’re also oddly catchy and layered with lots of bits that will give those expecting a more straightforward slam-a-thon experience a bit more to chew on, which is never a bad thing. –Jimmy Alvarado (Sorry State)


SHARED ARMS:
III Sessions: CD
Super-impressively executed skate-style pop punk not too far off the map from bands like The Swellers or Living With Lions. Slick without being too sugary, technical without being too show-offy. Not exactly my favorite style on earth, but these dudes are certainly right up there in quality with their very-popular peers. This band could certainly turn a lot of heads. Good stuff. Awesome handmade, spray-stenciled packaging, too. –Dave Williams (Tragicomedy)


SHARING MASS GRAVES:
Evil Death: LP
Ready to feel kind of icky? Check out these lyrics: “Rip it! Wear the flesh! Climb inside you! Become one! See through your eyes when I cum!” That’s from the song “Buffalo Bill,” inspired by Silence of the Lambs. Those aren’t even the most fucked up lyrics on this record. It gets much worse when they get into the songs about John Wayne Gacy and Jeffrey Dahmer. This sickness is set to choked-out vocals over thrashy hardcore. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself headbanging and vomiting simultaneously as you listen. –MP Johnson (Blind Spot)


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