We got in a ton of great new records in recently. Here’s just a few that we are excited about:
BLAZING EYE – Ways To Die 7”
After what has seemed like an eternity and an extremely long journey (including 90% of the initial pressing of the record mysteriously disappearing in transit), Blazing Eye’s most recent recording secures their place as one of Los Angeles’s best hardcore-punk bands. Propagating punk as true and original as bands the likes of G.I.S.M. and Siege, Blazing Eye sets forth with their strongest release since their 2013 demo. It’s a banger for sure and I’m happy that this record is finally a reality. (Static Shock Records #38)
COLD MEAT – Pork Sword Fever 7”
Cold Meat hail from Perth, Western Australia, but truly these are siren songs for every woman getting fucked over in every corner of this sorry planet, oozing total defiance and sneering, caustic rage across five certified slappers. They hex lazy pricks and bad bastards with a spell of spectacular jangeloid riffs and clattering anarcho toms, each track upping the stakes like a praying mantis – fuck, decapitate, eat corpse for nourishment. Vocalist Ashley’s throaty, spit-splashed lyrics cover the full gamut from the care burden placed on mothers (‘Maternity Stomp’) to the psychic burden of hating men while craving dick (‘Meat Joy’). This is incisive, tongue-in-arse-cheek, indefatigably Now punk. Cold Meat will have you fisting the air, but only if you lube up first. (Static Shock Records #55)
EXTREMITY – Coffin Birth LP
Oakland’s Extremity burst like a pustule onto the death metal scene in 2017 with their mini-LP Extremely Fucking Dead. Five ferocious tracks gave the first taste of what was to come, and now the band returns with its debut full length album Coffin Birth, a hideous ode to the scene’s past and present. Right from the start of the menacing opening intro / track of “Coffin Birth / A Million Witches,” the band brutalize with a hammer of pulverizing devastation and a defined melodic sensibility. Memorable and outright catchy songs that seamlessly veer from grinding speed to crushingly mid-paced unfold via a sordid concept that may reveal itself with careful attention. Once again recorded at Oakland’s Earhammer Studios, the birthplace for so many of today’s standout metal releases, this album boasts both surgical clarity and pummeling raw aggression. In combination with the attention to detail in both song and lyric writing, Extremity exhume a debut album born straight from a coffin.
BLASPHEMY – Victory (Son of the Damned) LPx2
After having recorded the “Live Ritual” performance in July, YK shipped the very same MiniDisc recorder used for that event to Ryan Förster, along with instructions on how to use it. The aforementioned rehearsal session took place in the basement of then-bassist Bestial Saviour of the Undead Legions, and Förster captured the event by placing the MiniDisc recorder on the top of a washing machine in the room. Given the circumstances, one might erroneously assume the resulting audio quality to be inferior. On the contrary, the audio turned out to be compellingly good and thus worthy of its own release. What makes this release particularly unique is the first-time inclusion of the track “Victory (Son of the Damned),” from which the rehearsal now derives its name. Though debate continues to this day as to which – between “Fallen Angel of Doom….” and the “Blood Upon the Altar” demo – represents the most essential Blasphemy recording, “Victory (Son of the Damned)” promises to hold its own place atop the mantle of bestial black metal history as a snapshot in time of the world’s most notorious black metal band. (Nuclear War Now Records #395)
SECT PIG – Crooked Backs LP
Violent and repetitious, frenzied and hallucinatory. Sect Pig’s sound on this album is disorienting and extreme. Precision guitar attacks and tumultuous percussive abuse characterize the band’s instrumental approach. Sect Pig utilize delay and other effects with intention, augmenting the tracks to add dimension and foster confusion. “Crooked Backs” displays a greater degree of compositional nuance than its predecessors, with unanticipated riffs, temporal shifts, and eccentric effects and sounds embedded within the tracks. “Crooked Backs” is the most cohesive of the three Sect Pig albums, but it also draws together the band’s entire body of work and confirms patterns in the band’s approach, with each album clocking in at under 20 minutes and featuring similarly stylized two-tone artwork. (Nuclear War Now Records #381)
CLITERATI/VIOLATION WOUND – split LP
Portland Queer Punk D-beat party masters fronted by Ami Lawless (Voetsek) team up with East Bay slime punks VW fronted by madman Chris Reifert (Autopsy) for this sick limited split 12”. (Tank Crimes Records #109)
LA MISMA – Peace Talks Continue As Do The Fables 7”
La Misma’s previous release, 2015’s “Kanizadi” LP, showed them harnessing and controlling their initial fury, utilizing Crisis’ musical toolkit to transform blasts of Ultimo Resorte-styled hardcore punk into something more tense and restrained. Three years later, Misma have dragged this formula all the way through their spiritual desert, achieving a masterful, lean tightness that is more desperate and ragged in its intensity than anything else they’ve yet done. Militant drums fire bleak, dirty melodies into states of stark chaos, as fierce Portuguese declarations ride the bucking storm. Over the years La Misma have mastered their unique sound, and this venomy and reckless incarnation is their most powerful and impressive work yet. Another necessary record by a necessary band. (Toxic State Records #32)
DEATHGRAVE – So Real It’s Now LP/CD
San Jose death grind punk influenced by Impetigo, Autopsy, Rudimentary Peni. Members of Brainoil and Amber Asylum. Fourteen tracks. Colored vinyl, download card. (Tank Crimes Records #111)
THOU – Rhea Sylvia LP
Thou is a forward-thinking metal/punk band from Baton Rouge, LA. “Rhea Sylvia” is the first of three EPs the band plans to release in 2018. It is a six-song monster that sees Thou exploring melodious territory with more confidence than ever before. (Deathwish Records #203)
NO BLUES – s/t 7”
Scott sent me the No Blues demo and I was a #1 fan immediately. Sometimes I’m reminded of Tenement, and sometimes Marked Men, but definitely with an overarching Tony Molina sense of arrangement and pacing in everything. A perfect power-pop style with a nice raw production, quick songs, unforgettable vocal melodies, tasteful guitar leads. Of course I immediately offered to do a record for them, and this is the first of several planned releases. Get in on the ground floor. (SPHC Records #101)
ESTRANGED – Frozen Fingers/World of Birds 7”
Newest release by Portland, OR post punk 3 piece the Estranged. Two “new” tracks recorded back in 2013 before their recent hiatus. This ep was scheduled to be released to coincide with their Australia/New Zealand tour in 2014 but for various reasons never came out. The first song, “Frozen Fingers” is a textured post-punk track with a constant ebb and flow like an upbeat version of something off a Nick Cave and the bad seeds or Echo and the Bunnymen album. With the climax coming via a farfisa lead that brings to mind some of the classic 60’s garage bands. The heavy 60’s rock influence continuing on the flip side with their cover of “World of Birds” by Dutch legends Q65. Their own take on this somber and depressing classic coming with some added distortion among other things that is guaranteed to give you chills. Finally back from their 3 year “break”. This ep was released for their recent European tour (spring ’18). (Black Water Records #66)
ESTRANGED/PUBLIC EYE – split 7”
Two bands from Portlands post-punk scene come together on one piece of wax with 1 song a piece. Moody post-punk on both sides. Public Eye (Autistic Youth) Redacted Memories is the follow up to their debut LP. a sort of lo-fi electronic rhythm travelling through layers of fuzzed out and synthed up guitars. the dystopian sound is reminiscent of an 80’s sci-fi soundtrack with the driving beat of early post-punk songs. The estranged side features the final song from their recording session of their self titled 3rd lp. The songwriting continuing to build into more of the 60’s garage element while still retaining that early post-punk sound. The jangly rhythms and dark leads from the guitars coupled with the somber bass undertones and driving rhythm of the drums are staples of the estranged sound. “Sleepless” weaves seamlessly in and out of the dark and the light. Both tracks are just a teaser for what’s next as both groups have plans for upcoming albums in 2018. (Black Water Records #67)
DWARVES – Rex Everything LP
BACK IN STOCK!!! THE DWARVES, the most extreme and cool American punk rock band, present this insane release. And what is it? Well, well, well… Mr. NICK OLIVERI (Kyuss, The Queens Of Stone Age) is The Dwarves bass player, and here Rex Everything compiles those tracks where Nick Oliveri is singing, screaming, and shouting out loud. The album is played by The Dwarves and produced by BLAG DAHLIA. As you can expect from The Dwarves this is a 20-minute LP with 12 direct punk rock shots to make your ears bleed! 150-gram vinyl; Edition of 1,000.
KLITZ – Rocking the Memphis Underground LP
BACK IN STOCK!!! All girl band from Memphis who happened to be Alex Chilton’s protégés; primal, loose rock n’ roll à la Chilton/Jim Dickinson/Tav Falco in a wild and primitive no wave/DIY punk style. Whether you like Charlie Feathers or Kleenex, The Cramps or Lydia Lunch, you will adore THE KLITZ, the unadulterated sound of the Memphis underground. One side studio, one side live, both sides frantic, chaotic, and electrifying!
NO LOVE – Choke On It LP
Finally! Despite a constant, five-year presence in Raleigh, NC’s fertile DIY hardcore community, NO LOVE’s recorded output seemed meager: two demo cassettes and a 7” on the Sorry State Records Singles Series. Speculating punk atrophy would be understandable, but this new record demonstrates the complete opposite. Those around for their inception watched No Love struggle with their footing, treading those awkward tween years as a snotty punk band. Once the dual guitar chemistry gelled and expanded from trading hardcore riffs to a high tension game of set-and-spike leads, the shows started getting better and tighter. That confidence bled out ELIZABETH LYNCH’s guarded nervousness, which she replaced with her signature sarcastic menace. No Love’s explosive debut LP, Choke On It, has been simmering in a centrifuge and wastes no time hurling potently packed punk rock nuggets at the listener. Clocking in 13 songs at 21:12, it’s a furious listen.
LFZ – Name Plus Focus LP
“A glistening field of sport / Mylar turf sucking up to the feet of the future athlete / No noise from the crowd / Hypo-extinct brain waves peak at nominal levels / Mouths hang as they watch the rehearsed games unfold. “Across megalopolis / Handshakes between men and machine / Ply for future rations /Every man for himself that isn’t under the spell of the government’s mind whip / Signals wash out over haphazardly stacked neighborhoods as they sleep / Investing, convincing, planting memories / Fabrication of emotion. “And even farther still / Past the snicker-snack of the city’s air intake fans /A humming drone passes over the green grey canopy of the last forest / The no man’s land / Scanning for heat traces and human sound / Looking for the resistance with its red pin-prick eye. “In the moments between search and seizure / The rebels eat from the forest floor /They climb trees, they commune with the animals / They live life, they stare out to the ocean, past the shanty skyscrapers/ The last frontier. “Sean Smith soundtracks all these thoughts in my mind’s eye / His synth and guitar layered music is the signal / It is the force field, refracting light / It is the chemtrail drifting down like slow motion party glitter / From the heavens settling like moon flakes on the roofs of the cars / On the debris / On the upturned faces of the rabble. “It is beautiful imagination at its best.” —John Dwyer
FACE TO FACE – Hold Fast Acoustic LP
When it comes to punk rock, few can rival what FACE TO FACE has accomplished in 27 years (!) as a band. While always staying true to the signature face to face sound, they are consistently finding new and exciting ways to keep their fans invigorated. With this in mind, it will come as no surprise that the band shifted gears on their upcoming album Hold Fast (Acoustic Sessions). As the name implies, the new album features 10 acoustic renderings of classic Face To Face songs. Comprised of fan-favorites ranging across their entire catalog, the songs on Hold Fast (Acoustic Sessions) are so much more than simply strippeddown versions of the originals on acoustic guitar. The songs come to life in a whole new way with robust instrumentation and a savvy musical perspective that puts them right at home among today’s most respected Americana and Alt-Acoustic acts. Of course, these fresh new takes still feature the unforgettable melodies that fans originally fell in love with, making them the perfect addition to summer playlists for both long-time fans and new listeners alike. Face To Face will be hitting the road hard this summer in support of Hold Fast, with a full US acoustic tour.
DONKEY BUGS – Ancient Chinese Secrets LP
“Clevos DBs have created a bizarro left field masterpiece. Strange, mystical, mysterious—I just can’t remember the last time I was so debilitated by music. Some songs bring to mind the best late 00s drum machine punk bands such as Spider/Catatonic Youth, others move into industrial territory a la Monte Cazazza (especially ‘The ABCs of Lust’). And a peppering of dub to boot! There are Multiple personalities behind the mic—a regular vocalist, a Russian woman, Kate Bush, a cheese loving northerner. The vocals really shine, some of the most confident lyrics I’ve heard. Definitely an unrestrained feel to the entire album (feedback as an instrument???) a la the Residents—the first time I heard it reminded me of the first time I head Duck Stab, completely mind bending. One of the best records I have ever put out.”—Lumpy
CRUELSTER – Riot Boys LP
CRUELSTER’s new record really is Against All Authority. Donnie got elected people thought the silver lining would be better punk? Hope you’re happy ! Here’s the one we’ve all been waiting in the mud for. Fourteen Tracks of seemingly dumb hardcore arranged to roast right wing daytime radio talking points. No flag remains unstood for here. “Crisis in Local Government Part III,” “The Pipeline could Work,” “Gold Studded Citizen” are only a taste of the ridicule. Join the Riot Boys and laugh at the system like never before.