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· 1:Razorcake #81 Now Available
· 2:#326 with Tim Brooks
· 3:Featured Record Reviews From Issue #81
· 4:#327 with Kurt Morris
· 5:#328 with Bianca Barragan and Simon Sotelo


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Razorcake #81
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Nights and Days in a Dark Carnival by Craven Rock
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Record Reviews

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VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Power of Ten: EP
A piece of the current Northwest hardcore scene is captured here. All bases covered from the more metallic side like Himsa, Left With Nothing, Contingent, to the more traditional sound of Spitting Teeth, and on to bands like Stay Gold, The Entropy Project, To See You Broken, The November Group, Screwjack, and Positively Negative, who are carving their own niches in hardcore. All in all, a pretty good comp. –Matt Average (1-2-3-4 Go!!!)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Battle for the Airwaves, Vol. 2, West Coast Punk Vs. East Coast Oi!: 7”
A four-way split. The Workin’ Stiffs: Charge out of the gate, turn on volume knobs to the far right, stick the needle in the red, and don’t look back to who’s being charred by their afterburner. Quite possibly one of their fastest, dead-on songs to date. Glad to hear them full speed and “My Ghetto” does what few bands can: erases the boundary between oi and punk. Excellent. The Bodies: Perhaps it’s the so-so recording and low fidelity, but I like the Bodies when they’re full of grit and pebbles and pops. Kinda like seeing them live, with beer soaking all nearby carpets and sweat and puke mingling on their shirts as they try to play. “Wolfboy” is a fun song. The Wretched Ones: Mid tempo, a tad repetitive, and it sounds a little too self-helpy for my liking (such as, “They need to step back, stop and smell the roses”). When I’m in the mood, I tend to reach for older Wretched Ones. They haven’t been doing it for me lately. The Templars: I don’t mind pride in one’s country half as much as the questionable ability for the flat-toned backup vocalist to harmonize over a classic rock riff. Dangerously close to folk oi. Yipes. –Todd Taylor (Radio)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Location is Everything Vol. 1: CD
Constipation. That is the feeling I get when listening to this. Trying to push the shit out with no success. The turtle pokes out when tracks by Strike Anywhere (!), the Explosion, and Trial by Fire play. The rest is utter poo that you can’t get rid of. I feel like I’m listening to mid-’90s Sub Pop (poo?!). College radio must be loving this, but I’m not. Time for some laxatives to free me of this debris. –Donofthedead (Jade Tree)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
The Boston Massacre Part Two: CD
Four 7” records get repackaged onto a single compact disc and, voila, instant compilation. Featured bands are Toxic Narcotic, A Global Threat, The Profits, Tommy and the Terrors, and Lost Cause, most of who easily fall in the “hardcore” pigeonhole. The tracks are good overall, the best coming from Toxic Narcotic. If you don’t already own ’em, you could do much worse things than picking this up. –Jimmy Alvarado (Rodent Popsicle)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Go Kart vs. the Corporate Giant 3:: CD
You know whatís hard? Itís hard to write reviews of comps. Do I want to go through the trouble of naming every single band and describing them? Too lengthy. Hell, this comp has twenty-six bands and thirty tracks. I guess I will go to my formula and name the bands that caught my interest. This release is part of their bargain priced label samplers. What makes this one step up from many that are on the market is that it features many unreleased tracks. My theory is this should be standard since it makes the comp unique from the actual releases by the bands featured. What happens when you only like one track and you go out to buy the album? The comp becomes useless. Well, okie dokie, letís see what excites or interests me. Capture the Flag: Pennywise meets Ď80s metal. Daycare Swindlers: Has an Angry Samoans meets Circle Jerks feel to me. Toxic Narcotic: Every time I hear them, they impress me more with their hardcore attack. I Farm: Dual vocal assault punctuates the power of their music. Manda and the Marbles: ďSeductionĒ is the perfect intro to this female-led powerpop sensation. GBH: More melodic than their past efforts. Varukers: Band that has been around longer than some and sounds better than others. Old age have not slowed these punks down. INDK: Make me think Against All Authority. Sick on the Bus: The new school of UK punk. I canít believe these guys are not more popular. Brothers of Conquest: I have hazy images of a Deep Purple sticker on a six-foot bong. Anti-Flag: Easy to consume, politically charged and always a good listen. Icons of Filth: Still not as good as they were in 1985. Lunachicks: I may not own everything but these women canít put out anything bad from what Iíve heard. 46 Short: Is this Ron from Final Conflictís new band? Star Strangled Bastards: Good dual-vocal, old school, early Ď80s sounding punk. A good variety offered here; should find a happy listener in all of us. –Donofthedead (Go Kart)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
A Fistful of Rock Ďní Roll Vol. 10: CD
Twenty-five bands (including Speedealer, Groovie Ghoulies, Bulemics and others) give you twenty-five tracks of stoner metal, Detroit-inspired Swede rawk, garage punk, and everything in between. Some tracks are pretty good, but on the whole Iím so burned out on the niche that I find it damn hard to even feign interest anymore. Cosmic Ballroomís ďYouíre the ManĒ did get my toes tappiní, though. –Jimmy Alvarado (Devil Doll)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Lookout! Freakout, Episode 3: CD
I found this sampler of current Lookout! and Panic Button bands to be boring. Sounds like a promo disc that is being sent to college radio programmers to have their bands put on rotation or some major labelís attempt to tell the masses what is going to be the next big thing. –Donofthedead (Lookout!)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Obey the Giant RockíníRoll Swindle: CD
I wonder what makes me grab something for review sometimes. I just grab stuff pretty blindly and hope I like it. But sometimes you pop something on and you know right away that you donít want to review it. This is one of those cases. I canít really justify in my head why I wouldnít want to review this. The variety of bands are pretty diverse. As a sample, you get the Bouncing Souls, The Hives, The Lawrence Arms, The Suicide Machines, The (International) Noise Conspiracy and the rap/raunch of Peaches. Thereís more, but these are the ones that will pull the people into the stores. This is a compilation of bands that is supposed to represent, in music, the street artwork of Shepard Fairey. You might have seen his posters, stickers or stencils spray painted around. I think Iíve seen his shirts. Itís the image of a head staring like Big Brother in 1984 with the word ďObeyĒ at the bottom. From quickly glancing at the enhanced portion of this CD, he is into posting images to provoke thought. Cool stuff and I fully support him. But this just didnít put my nuts into a twist and make me cry. Hey, I got a review out of this! –Donofthedead (Fork in Hand)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Rock-N-Roll-A-Go-Go Vol. 7: CD
Antiseen, Pulpit Red, Nova Express, and the Nutrajets contribute two songs each to this, which means you get eight tracks of punk-infused rockĎníroll. –Jimmy Alvarado (Devil Doll)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Fat Music Vol. VI , Uncontrollable Fatulence: CD
Do you know the drill? The drill is this is the sixth in the series of the Fat sampler. Duh! Well they get better every time since they are adding more unreleased tracks on these comps. What me, get a Fat comp? I canít have that in my collection. I will lose major punk points if my friends find out. Me, I donít care. Lost many a punk point in my day. Besides, Iím getting pretty old and I donít have a lot of friends anyway. I shouldnít have to describe what these bands sound like to you. Vanessa at Fat is really good at what she does and is a good person also. You get unreleased tracks from: The Lawrence Arms (good track, like it better than their previous output), Mad Caddies (goofy mariachi, cowpunk for a good time), Lagwagon, Strung Out, Rise Against (I keep forgetting to go out and buy their CD), Swinginí Utters (I canít stop hearing Mike Ness and Social Distortion when I listen to these guys), Frenzal Rhomb, Anti-Flag (So good and thought provoking!), NOFX, Wizo (These guys donít record enough!), and Me First and the Gimme Gimmes (A Prince song originally performed by The Family and then covered by Sinead OíConnor and desecrated by these guys, making it sound like a Billy Joel song). The rest of the comp is rounded off with tracks off of their current releases: Propagandhi, Dillinger Four, No Use for a Name, Avail, Less than Jake, Sick of it All, and Good Riddance. This should be reasonably priced, so use that X-mas money that you might have leftover. –Donofthedead (Fat)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Punch Drunk IV: CD
Itís a shame that street punk and oi got the bad rap that they got. Iíll admit that some street punk bands did need to go, and that the wanna-be-working-class anthems did run thin, but for a few years there, TKO picked up the street punk banner and really ran with it. Their first couple of Punch Drunk comps were great. They introduced me to awesome bands like the Reducers SF, the Bodies, and the Beltones. This Punch Drunk, though, isnít nearly as exciting as the old ones. Maybe itís the trends of street punk or maybe the guys at TKO are just changing their musical tastes, but this comp definitely has more of a bar rock sound to it, thanks to bands like the Generators, Electric Frankenstein, Anti-Seen, and Cocknoose. There are also songs that donít stray too much from the bar rock sound, but are still pretty good, thanks to bands like Hollywood Hate, Terminus City, and Bottles and Skulls. The Slaughter and the Dogs song makes me race for the fast forward button, and the new, otherwise-unreleased Smogtown song brings me back to the old days, when the Punch Drunk comps reaffirmed my faith in punk rock. –Sean Carswell (TKO)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Punk Rock Jukebox: CD
So-so comp of mostly punk bands doing punk rock covers. –Donofthedead (Blackout!)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Rise Above: CD
This is a benefit CD for the West Memphis 3 (See the documentary Paradise Lost). Iím sure you heard about this. I read about it in the Los Angeles Times. It has different people singing Black Flag songs, backed by Henry Rollins and the band Mother Superior. I like the premise of the CD Ė to raise awareness and support a cause. The part that irks me is that Henry is using punk when he long abandoned the scene. Would anyone buy this if it was songs from his solo career? No. I had a coupon, so I bought this out of curiosity. I was disappointed. I grew up on Black Flag. The songs do not have the ferocity of the originals. The lack of Greg Ginnís guitars sound is definitely missing in the energy. If you are looking for good Black Flag, I would recommend Everything Went Black. Damaged is not their best record! It contains songs that were recorded before Henry joined the band. My opinion is that the end of Black Flag was when Henry started singing. I much preferred when Ron Reyes (Chavo) or Dez Cadena was the singer. This is like going out to see the Dead Kennedys with Brandon Cruz singing. –Donofthedead (Sanctuary)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Two Turds and a Golfball: CD
I picked this up outta the review pile because the Grand Pricks, whose ďHigh Kicks to Your DicksĒ is one of thee punkest albums of the last five years. I regretted that decision when I saw it was a compilation of bands playing the same song, one that shares the same name as the compilation itself, and then was pleasantly surprised when I put this puppy on. WILDLY diverse in sound, from grind to hardcore to rap metal to straight punk to country to industrial noise and beyond. The fact that virtually none of the lyrics match from one version to the next leads me to believe that this is more a case of bands performing songs with the same name rather than covering the same tune. Either way, this was some pretty entertaining listening. Pick it up. Need more impetus? Thereíre exclusive Anal Cunt and Dahmer tracks on here, you discerning punkers, you. –Jimmy Alvarado (Hollow Bunny)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
We Donít Need Society: CD
Another tribute album, this one for DRI, and I have to admit that, while I liken the tribute album phenomenon to walking up and kicking a musician square in the nuts for all his hard work, this one wasnít as bad as expected. Some choice covers of songs spanning the bulk of DRIís career are provided courtesy of Ratos de Porao, Electric Frankenstein (a smoking cover of ďPlastique,Ē believe it or not), Hollywood Hate, Retox, Capitalist Casualties and more. As itís a tribute album, I refuse to recommend buying this under any circumstances, but Iím not above suggesting that you find someone that was dumb enough to buy it and ask íem to tape it for you. –Jimmy Alvarado (Malt Soda)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
You Call This Music?!? Vol. II: CD
Thirty-five of your favorite bands make a ruckus. Features Operation Cliff Clavin, ESL, Pornshot, Toys That Kill, Four Letter Words, Nazis from Mars and oodles of others. Personally, the highlight of the whole disc was the outtro. –Jimmy Alvarado (Geykido Comet)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Cool Grrrls Kick Ass!: CD
Sixteen tracks, three good, an alright ratio. Manda and the Marbles, Riff Randells, and The Waulkees from Italy all gave great tracks. The rest just plain suck. –Megan Pants (CoolGrrrls.com)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Skannibal Party 2: CD
This is the sophomore release of a new grouping of international ska bands. No ska-punk here. Just two tone and traditional that reaches back to its Jamaican origins. With this type of ska, I never seem to tire of it. Like reggae, ska can be a mellow ride to a peaceful place. It has twenty-one bands with twenty-one tracks that let you sample, like appetizers, what you may personally like. I’ve got my groove on! If you want some, go get you some. –Donofthedead (Mad Butcher)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Northwest Kicked in the Nuts: CD
A collection of bands from the northwestern United States (duh) that feature at least one female member, including the Die Jobs, Macho Borracho, Antiworld, Amazombies, Sado-Nation (!) and others. While the dominant genre is punk in a myriad of hues, there is the occasional metal tune. Nice concept. Not bad, not spectacular. –Jimmy Alvarado (Last Chance)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Dirtnap Across the Northwest: CD
After all the hype, after all the glowing reviews I read, after looking at the lineup, I really wanted to call this the best compilation ever. Really. And don't get me wrong, the good songs on here are fantastic, and there are a lot of good songs. But some songs really aren't that good. It seems like some of these bands are trying so hard to fall under the category of new wave that they either forget the hooks (like the Intelligence) or get really repetitive (like the Cinch). Some of the bands on here that aren't really new wave are still good, like Mea Culpa, and some still suck, like Midnight Thunder Express. And don't get me started on how the "new" Briefs song is from their new album. All in all, the good outweighs the bad and this is still a great comp. It just doesn't live up to its considerable hype. -Not Josh –Staff (Dirtnap)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Fruit Cocktail vs. Hellcat: CD
This is something different. Apparently, a British band called Fruit Cocktail recorded some songs, then conned some Hellcat artists into singing those songs when those bands toured England. There are nine songs. All of the music is by Fruit Cocktail, but the vocals are by Al Barr (Dropkick Murphys), Duane Peters (US Bombs), Greg Lee (Hepcat), Dave Hillyard (Slackers, Dave Hillyard and the Rocksteady 7), Tim Armstrong (Rancid), and so on. The songs are pretty slow, and it really forces the singers to show their true vocal abilities. Some singers fair better than others. The high point, for me, is the song with Brad and Jen from F-Minus. Overall, it's not a bad CD. –Sean Carswell (No Front Teeth)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Smash up Derby: CD
Of the twenty bands on this CD, one plays power-pop (the Pinkz), one sounds like the Gories (the Maggots), one sounds like country music (the Dukes of Hamburg), and the others listen to too much KISS. For the most part I was asking myself, "Why is this band so popular?" except during the New Bomb Turks, when I asked myself, "Man, what the hell happened to the New Bomb Turks?" -Not Josh –Staff (Gearhead)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Stripped Down, Fueled Up!: CD
Electric Frankenstein! Jed Whitey! The Puppies! Ironboss! Remember their names, you'll be screaming (for) them (to stop) all night long!!! Yawn-Rock extravaganza. BEST SONG: Electric Frankenstein, "Who's Watching You" BEST SONG TITLE: Jed Whitey, "Hands Up If You Think I'm Cool" FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: Metal Matt Crocco of Ironboss is credited with playing "stun guitar," the first such specialized position player since Gregg Turner of the Angry Samoans (he also is depicted wearing a UFO t-shirt, which was a less-than-encouraging sign when it started happening on Cockney Rejects albums). Also, Jed Whitey thanks no fuckers except Ray & Al. –Rev. Norb (Out Of The Loop)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
The Cretins Wanna Dance: LP
Eight bands play sixteen tunes and try to sound all snotty and punk rock, but too often end up sounding like another batch of Queers clones. I dug the Cave 4's "Surf Beat," and the Backwood Creatures' "Goo Goo" was just ginchy, but that was about all that moved me. –Jimmy Alvarado (Swindlebra)


VARIOUS ARTISTS:
Warped Tour 2003 Tour Compilation: 2xCD
Another excuse for me to not go to the Warped Tour. I heard most of the bands right here. –Donofthedead (Side One Dummy)


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