Hi there,

Welcome to my mailorder. My intention is to carry releases that are both hard to get around here and are worth your buck for a decent price.

Scroll down for an up to date list of what I've got laying around. New items are in red. The last update was on 24-4-2015.

You can go straight to the review section through the menu underneath that lovely picture to the left of this text. Pay no mind to the year mentioned. Reviews are updated regularly. All are written by yours truly. Despite all odds I'm still trying to keep up.

If you have any question or just want to call me names you can contact me at:

dontbuyrecords @ gmail . com.

Thanks for reading,

Lammie
Prices:
7" = 4,50 euro*
12" = 10 euro*
Tapes = 4 euro*
Zines = Just ask.

*Unless indicated differently.

I also offer three-month-subs for MRR inside of the Netherlands for 20 euro postage paid.

7"
Absurdo - Tots Sants Ep (5 euro)
Alerta - Ep
Astral Travel - Bodymelt 7" (6 euro)
Astryd Lindgren's Great 5 - Ep (5 euro)
Bad American - Ep
Bad American - Bruises Ep
Bad Daddies - Bad Year Ep
Bad Daddies - You Ain't Right Ep
Bad Daddies/ Lögnhalsmottagningen - Split Ep (5 euro)
Bad Daddies/ Hard Left - Split Ep
Bad Noids - Rats Live On No Evil Star Ep (5 euro)
Bad People - Pearls Before Swine Ep (5 euro)
Bad Taste/ Brain Car - Split 7" (5 euro)
Beat Beat Beat -Cheap Time Ep
Bed Bugs - Ep (5 euro)
Blood Presure - 6 Song Ep
Brain Car - Rock 'n Roll Bologna Ep (5 euro)
Bums - Do it all Night 7"
Cal and the Calories - Bastard in a Yellow Suit 7'' (5 euro)
Canadian Rifle - Cinder Block 7"
Cannomen - Science Studies the Black Hole Ep
Cannomen - Sex on the Bleach 7"
Cheap Drugs - Ep (5 euro)
Cheap Drugs - W.D.C. Ep (5 euro)
Cheap Time - Other Stories 7" (6 euro)
Chresus Jist/ Modern Delusion - Split Ep
Cold Circuits - Ep (5 euro)
Condenada - Mother's Tongue Ep
Condominium - Carl Ep
Condominium - Thug Ep
Cop City Chill Pillars - Gift Shop 7" (5 euro)
Criminal Code - Salvaged Ep
Los Culitos - Estoy Qui Por Error Ep
Cuntz - Cooked 7" (5 euro)
Défaite - Comme des Rats Ep
Disparo/ Demenzia Kolektiva - Split Ep (5 euro)
Disparo - Ep (5 euro)
Divided Minds - Strangers Ep
Druid Perfume - Don't Eat Them, They're Poison 7"
Dry Heaves - Loose Tongues Ep
Dry Heaves - Medicated Youth Ep
Flaccid - Ep (5 euro)
Flip Shit - Outgoing Rockers Ep (5 euro)
Fontana - Not A Leg To Stand On 7”
Foreign Objects - Mammonism 7"
Fright Eye - Ep (5 euro)
Fright Eye/ Massenger - Split Ep (5 euro)
Frustros - A L'attaque de Rien Ep
Gas Rag - 6 Track Ep
Gas Rag - Human Rights Ep
Gas Rag - On The Beach Ep
Ghastly Spats - Ep (6 euro)
G.H.B. - Dope Ep (5 euro)
Golden Pelicans - The Earls 7" (5 euro)
Hassler - Amorality Ep
Herds - Michigan Ep
Hungry Gayze - Roadkill 7" (5 euro)
Ilegal - La Vida Es El Producto de Nuestra Esperanza Y Las Visiones Irreales Ep (5 euro)
Inmates - Now We Talkin' Hardcore Ep
In School - Praxis of Hate Ep
Los Inservibles - Uno Vida de Tristeza Ep (5 euro)
Insomnio - Walking On The String Ep
Krigskade - Nar Alt Gar Til Helvede Ep (6 euro)
Krunchies – Ugly Inside Ep
Lamps - All Seeing Eye 7" (6 euro)
Lipkick - Selftitled Ep
Live Fast Die - Practicing for the Gangbang 7" (5 euro)
Logic Problem - No Center Ep
Long Pigs - Ep (6 euro)
Lucha Eterna - Asceroso Ep (5 euro)
Male Nurses - Wanna Play Doctor? 7"
Moralens Väktare - Konsumera Ep (5 euro)
Moralens Väktare/ Röda Sten - Split Ep (5 euro)
Munchausen - Ep
Mundo Muerto - Rompe El Silencio 7"
The Narcs - I Want Dope, I want Pussy, I want all that Shit Ep (5 euro)
Navy of the Nice - Ep
Negative Lifestyle - Panic Ep (5 euro)
Negative Lifestyle - End Up Like Them Flexi (5 euro)
Night Stalkers - Don't Talk To Me Ep (5 euro)
Nuclear Spring - Tour Ep (5 euro)
Oblivionation - Cult of Culture Ep (5 euro)
Pedestrians - Killing Season Ep
Perspex Flesh - Ona Ep (6 euro)
Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivat - Oma Rauha Ep (5 euro)
Pink Nightmare - Ep
Pizza OD - Ep
Pizza OD - Second Ep
P-Nissarna - Ep (6 euro)
Primates - Control Salvaje Ep
Pukeoid - Ep
Pusrad - Akta Dig Ep (5 euro)
Putas Mierdas - Extición Ep
Rákosi - Second Ep (5 euro)
Ras - Ep (6 euro)
Recide - Statues Ep
Replica - Ep (5 euro)
R.O.B.O. - Ep (5 euro)
Ryan Dinosaur - Demo Ep
Satellites of Love - Ep (5 euro)
Secret Prostitutes - The Ken Rock Ep (5 euro)
Secret Prostitutes - Fantasi Di Aushwitz Ep (5 euro)
The Sentenced - Out For Blood Ep (5 euro)
Sex Bunker - Elephant Skull Ep (5 euro)
Sex Drive - Ep (5 euro)
Sick Mormons - Why Does Shit Keep Falling From The Sky? Ep
Silla Electrica - No Controlo Ep
The Slugz - Suit and Tie Ep
Slugz - Empty Space Ep
Snob - Exploit Me Ep (5 euro)
Sucked Dry - Falling Apart at the Seems Ep
Svart Städhjälp - Under All Kritik Ep (5 euro)
Street Legal/ Frozen Teens - Split Ep
Thieves - Positive Vibrations Ep
Total Trash - Ep
Tumor Warlord - Subway Gas Attack Ep (5 euro)
Tyvek - Mary Ellen Claims 7" (5 euro)
Urban Achievers - Ep (5 euro)
UV Race - Demos Bootleg Ep (5 euro)
Video - Cult of Video 7"
Wallrides - Bomb the Hills Ep (5 euro)
White Load - Pig Eyes 7" (5 euro)
Wooden Kimono - Ep (5 euro)
Year of the Rat/ Clocked In - Split Ep (6 euro)

12"s
Absurdo - Demo 12"
Amdi Petersens Arme - Discography (1998-2002) (20 euro)
Aspirina Infantil - El Reino De La Estupidez 12"
Bad American - Pretty/Ugly 12" (12,50 euro)
Bad American - American Dream Lp (12,50 euro)
Bill Bondsmen - ...--. .-.-.- ... .-.-.- / -.-----..- .-.--. .-. . - ..-. ..- .-. -.- . -.. 12'' (8 euro)
Bits of Shit - Cut Sleeves Lp (12,50 euro)
Brain F - Sleep Rough Lp
Canadian Rifle - Visibility Zero Lp
Cardiac Arres - In The Mouth of Madness Lp
Cuntz - Aloha Lp (15 euro)
Cuntz - Solid Mates Lp (15 euro)
Dan Melchior - K-85 Lp (14 euro)
Dark Times - Give Lp + CD (15 euro)
Deaf Wish - Lp (15 euro)
Gas Rag - Beats Off 12''
Gestapo Khazi - Jewel of the Land Lp (12,50 euro)
GG King - Unending Darkness Lp (12,50 euro)
Hassler - Fed, Worked and Watered Lp
Hoax - Lp (12,50 euro)
De Høje Hæle - Skal Vi Aldrig Videre Lp (12,50)
De Høje Hæle - Kold Traet & Bange 12"
Imaginary Dictionary - You Can't Spell "Dictionary"... Without Dicks 12"
Inutili - Satori 12" (15 euro)
Homicides - Black Leather Redneck 6 Song Ep (14 euro)
LiveFastDie - Hit Stains (14 euro)
Manikin - Stop the Sirens Lp (12,50 euro)
Los Monjo - La Vida Que Todos Envidian Lp (12,50 euro)
Muscle Revolution/ Prosthetic Head - Split Lp (12,50 euro)
Night Terrors - Back to Zero 2xLp (25 euro)
Night Terrors - Spiral Vortex Lp (14 euro)
No - Empty Space - 12" (12,50 euro)
No Slogan - Aversion Therapy 12”
Nueva Autoridad Democrática - 12"
Las Otras - Devolver El Golpe Lp (12,50 euro)
Perspex Flesh - 12" (12,50 euro)
The Real Energy - Beyond Delay Lp (12,50 euro)
Real Regular - Lp (12,50 euro)
Red Red Red - New Action Lp (14 euro)
Sack-O'-Woes - The Paranoids are Coming 12"
Sacred Shock - You’re Not With Us 12”
Secret Prostitutes - Welcome to Punk Lp (12,50 euro)
Sewers - Hoisted Lp (15 euro)
Shovels - Lp (15 euro)
The Sleaze - Tecktonic Girlz 12" (12,50 euro)
Snakerun - Onesided 12" (12,50 euro)
Soviet Valves - Death Trumps Romance 12" (15 euro)
The Stabs - Dead Wood Lp (15 euro)
The Stabs - Dirt Lp (15 euro)
The Stickmen - Lp (15 euro)
The Stickmen - Man Made Stars Lp (15 euro)
Subtle Turnhips - Redhair With Some Lp (15 euro)
Sucked Dry - Dog Children Lp (12,50 euro)
Sunflare - Ghetto Blasts 12" (15 euro)
Synthetic ID - Apertures 12"
Unholy Thoughts - The Attic Lp
Valley Boys - Demo 12" (12,50 euro)
Walls - The Future is Wide Open Lp
Yes, I'm Leaving - Mission Bulb Lp (15 euro)
Yes, I'm Leaving - Slow Release Lp (15 euro)
Various Artists - Does It Hurt Comp Lp (No Slogan, Sotatila, Dumbstruck, Charlie, Ruidosa Inmundicia, Yellow Eyes and Narsaak)
Various Artists - Mallorca Punk Volume I (12,50 euro)
Various Artists - Tarantismo Summit III Lp (Alx NVA, Johnny Lzr, Xunholm, Gary Wrong) (15 euro)
Various Artists - Welcome to 2013 Lp (Hondartzako Hondakinak, Cülo, Adjustment to Society, Big Crux, Ooze, Haute Couture, Inservibles, Tenement, Aspirina Infantil, Negative Degree, Brown Sugar, Porkeria, Nasa Space Universe, Good Throb, Bored Straight, Broken Prayer, Thee Nodes) (15 euro)

Tapes
1981 - Demo Tape
Assyrians - Tape
Beastman - Demo Tape (5 euro)
Birdsounds - Uncle Sam, Meet Uncle Tom Tape (5 euro)
Cane - Cum in your Heart Tape
Caucasoid - Demo Tape (5 euro)
Los Culitos- El Duelo Final Tape
Dark Times - Demo Tape (5 euro)
Displeasure - Demonstrations of Displeasure Tape
Divided Minds - Demo Tape
Drugs Dogs - Demo Tape
Empty Room - Demo Tape (5 euro)
Eroders - Demo Tape
Fake Surfers - Demo Tape
Flaccid - Demo Tape
Frustros - Demo Tape
Fuck Eyes - Complicator Tape
Garbageman - Tape
Generacion Suicida - En Vivo Ink Annex Live Tape
In School - Demo Tape
Kaupingun Valot - Huomiseen Tape
Krigskade - Demo Tape
Missionary - Demo Tape
Modern Delusion - Wasteland Tape
No Code - Demo Tape (5 euro)
The Ovens - Settings Tape (6 euro)
Predator - 15 Tracks Tape
Secret Police - Demo Tape
Sex Bunker - Great More Garbage Tape
Shards - Demo Tape
Shards - Suicide Tape
Sin Motivo - Demo Tape (4,50 euro)
Slag - Demo Tape
Sperm - Nightmare Life Tape (5 euro)
Sperm - Yahweh Brings Us To This Hell Tape (5 euro)
St. Dad - Keep it in your Pants Tape
Telecommande - En Ligne de Mire Tape
Tortura - Demo Tape
Total Trash - Demo Tape
TV Freaks - Demo
Ugly Motors - Demo Tape
Utah Jazz - Green Tracks and Brown Notes Tape (5 euro)
Year of the Rat - Ctrl+Alt+Del Tape (5 euro)
Vegetative State - Catatonic Jungle Tape Ep (5 euro)
Wetbrain - Demo Tape
Zodiacs - Demo Tape
V/A - Modern Babylon Compilation Tape (5 euro)
V/A - Rotcore Compilation Tape and Fanzine (6 euro)

Zines
Accept the Darkness #5 (Silentzio Statico, Distort, Lebenden Toten, Lots of Reviews) (3 euro)
Accept the Darkness #6 (Crimen de Estado, School Jerks, Lots of Reviews) (3 euro)
Accept the Darkness #7/ Ratcharge #25 (Vile Gash, La Vida Es Un Mus, Tyvek, Sun Ra) (2,50 euro)
Brain Works Slow Fanzine (Alex Ratcharge's MRR columns so far) (3 euro)
Dirty Alleys, Dirty Minds/ Ratcharge Split Fanzine (Condominium, Bum Kon Seizures, Inservibles, XYX, Frenchies Fleurs) (3 euro)
Droppings Fanzine #2 + Compilation Cassette (4 euro)
Got Myself #5 (Wasted Time, Double Negative, Night Birds) (2,50 euro)
Limited Readership #2 (Pollution, Milk Music, Spike in Vain, Condominium) (3 euro)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #322 March 2010 (Death, Dry Rot, Druid Perfume, Kim Phuc)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #323 April 2010 (Spits, Face the Rail, DADFAG, JP Williams from Really Red)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #324 May 2010 (RIP Bruce, Kleenex/Lilliput, Necro Hippies, Rot Shit)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #326 July 2010 (U-Ron from Really Red, Bunny Skulls, Trash Kit)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #328 October 2010 (Puffy Areolas, Conversions, Super Wild Horses)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #330 November 2010 (Bukkake Boys, Negative Lifestyle, Foreign Objects, Tyranna)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #333 February 2011 (Welders, Straight Arrows, Olympia Scene Report)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #334 March 2011 (Useless Children Kitchen Floor, Year End Top 10s)
Black Feet, Nux Vomica)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #341 October 2011 (Brian Walsby, Plates, Royal Headache, Diet Cokeheads, Ed Nasty and the Dopeheads)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #356 January 2013 (Absurdo, Secret Prostitutes, Mydolls, Infernöh, Protestant)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll # 363 August 2013 (Las Otras, Sudor, Terveet Kädet, Toinen Vaihtoehto)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #364 September 2013 (The New Flesh, Trashies, Snob Value, Whatever Brains)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #370 March 2014 (2013 Year End Top 10's, Nervosas, Komplikations, Mallwalkers)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #371 April 2014 (All Columns Issue)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #375 August 2014 (Una Bestia Incontrolable, Glue, Eiefits, Thee Migthy Fevers)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #376 September 2014 (Gas Rag, The Dishrags, S.H.I.T., Iron Lung Records, Kuudes Silmä, Maailmanloppu)
Maximumr Rock 'n Roll #377 October 2014 (Fracaso, Harsh Words, Government Flu, Mind Cure Records, Mexico City Scene Report)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #378 November 2014 (Ex-Yugo Special Part I: Slovenia with Pankrti 92 KuZle, Indust-Bag, Tozibabe, FV Records, Buldogi, Quod Massacre, Sund and YI, Big Zit, Ooze, Australia Scene Report and Supreme Echo Records)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #379 December 2014 (Nunhex, Rakta, Autistic Behavior, Marmara Streisand, Dick & Jane, Poison Girls, Mothers News, Brooks Headly, Prootester/Misled Youth, Doomed to Extinction, Death by Audio)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #381 February 2015 (Broken Prayer, Dark Times, Hysterics, Quango, Vacant State, Wiccans, Earth Girls, Accidente, Börn, Metadona, Not Dead Yet)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #382 March 2015 (In School, Pig DNA, Spot, Year End Top10s, Grenoble Scene Report)
Maximum Rock 'n Rol #383 April 2015 (Comics Issue)
Maximum Rock 'n Roll #384 May 2015 (G.L.O.S.S., Violence Creeps, Trance. Fat Creeps, Vivisektio, SMZB, Black & Brown, It's Gonna Be A Blow, It This Venue Accessible?)
Neons #1 (Meat Dog and a lot of distasteful stuff) (3 euro)
No Thanks Fuck Everything #3 (Sacred Shock, Deskonocidos, the Brat)
No Thanks Fuck Everything #4 (Daylight Robbery, Raw Nerve, Illmatic)
No Thanks Fuck Everything #6 (Germ Attack, Reckless Agression, Discharge, Accept the Darkness, Gangstarr)(3 euro)

On the way:
Homostupids - Sleepytime Music Man Tape
Vatican Dagger - Not To Be 7''

Working on (intentions, no guarantuees...):
The Achtungs - Full of Hate 7"
The Beekeepers - Pallet Stacking Ep
Bill Bondsmen/ SBLC - Resurgent Cinerbus Split Ep
Bill Bondsmen - Disaster Prone 7"
Bill Bondsmen - Overcrowded Control 7"
Bill Bondsmen - Nineteen 7"
Bill Bondsmen - Dead 7"
Chicken Chain - Birth of the Googus Lp
Flesh Wounds - Lp
The Intended - Huguenot 7"
Messrs - Ep
Midnite Snaxxx - Don't Wake Me Up 7"
Pink Reason - I Ache For You 7"
Slugga - Parasite 7"
Tyvek - Mary Ellen Claims 7"

Lots of other shit, I won't be mentioning for now...

Shipment:
Shipment costs depend on the weight and destination of your order. Here are rough weight estimates and shipment fees so you can do some math yourself. If you have any questions in regard to shipment or just want to know the exact costs of your order, feel free to contact me; dontbuyrecords @ gmail . com.

Weight

7" = 100 grams
12" = 300 grams
Tape = 100 grams
Zine = 200 grams

Within the Netherlands:
0-2000 grams = 3,50 euro or less (NO LP'S)
0-10 kilograms = 6,95 euro
Within Europe:
0-250 grams = 4,80 euro or less (NO LP'S)
250-2000 grams = 10,40 euro or less (NO LP'S)
0-2000 grams = 13,- euro

Intercontinental (anywhere but Europe):
Please ask

Payment:
You can pay through paypal or banktransfer. Paypal charges 4% service costs, so if you can pay through the bank, I'd recommend you to. When I receive your payment I will send the records out as soon as possible. If you're interested in making an order, have any questions or just are bored out of your mind, feel free to drop me a line at dontbuyrecords @ gmail.com.

Thanks for your interest and take care,

Lammie

12" Reviews


Absurdo - Demo 12" (Self-Released)
This right here is Absurdo's 2010 demo tape pressed to wax by none other than the band themselves. With twelve songs and a better recording than their debut Ep, it's sort of strange to qualify this release as a demo, yet it was originally released as such. For those not yet in the know Absurdo are a Spanish band playing fast hardcore punk with vocals in their native tongue. What makes Absurdo for me are their energy, Hector's manic vocals, good song writing and a thin guitar sound without distortion. Put those four things together and you have a hardcore band that is able to convey urgency and produce memorable songs at the same time. Sadly that's a combination not found much among hardcore groups these days. In the early 1980s playing fast was an act of defiance. These days playing fast has become part of the style at best and a convention or rule to be followed at worst. What I'm getting at is that playing fast, no longer cuts it. I want more! Good thing Absurdo's songs have hooks, quite the accomplishment with most of the songs being as short as they are! The band isn't all about playing fast though. They occassionally give the listener a chance to catch breath with songs like 'Monstruos de Hierro', which is wise. He or she might have a fainting fit without. It furthermore helps to keep the listener's attention.
Another important feature of Absurdo is that they're getting a message out. They're very political, which is something that seems to generally be spat on by punk bands worldwide bar Spain. This is a matter I still can't wrap my head around. Why is it that anarchism still seems to make sense in Spain while pretty much every person labeling him- or herself an anarchist in these parts is an idiot? I'll probably never know. The record comes with an insert containing the lyrics in Spanish as well as translations in English. The general theme of the songs is modern life in an industrial city e.g. Barcelona and the emptiness, loneliness and pointlessness that comes with living in such a place. I'm surprised how bleak the lyrics are, because these guys came across like very positive people in their MRR interview from a few years ago. I guess playing these songs gets their anger and frustration out. Good!
I've been told Absurdo are amazing live and am still bummed that I did not see them on their last European tour. Their shows were not advertised anywhere! Hopefully I'll get another chance to see this outfit live somewhere down the road. Another Euro tour would be rad, but I'd settle for a new record as well. It's been too goddamn long!

Amdi Petersens Armé - Discography (1998-2002) Lp (Hjernespind) (20 euro)
What can I possibly say about this band that hasn't been said before? Amdi Petersen's Armé were the band that launched the K-Town hardcore moniker to the great heights it reached in the early 2000s. Although APA only released two Ep's they left a mark on the international hardcore scene like few others have done since. It's not without reason that people are still talking about this band.
Time for some retrospect, some looking back. Let's go back to the time I first heard about this band. This must have been in 2004 or so. I was carefully starting to explore DIY hardcore around that time. Amdi Petersen's Armé had just called it quits or were about to. Despite their demise Kopenhagen hardcore was on everybody's mind back then. You couldn't attent a show without a band or crowd member sporting an Amdi Petersens Armé T-shirt, the one that's worn by the kid on the sleeve of the 'Blod Ser Mere Virkeligt Ud Pa Film' Ep. I was in my late teens and didn't get what everybody loved so much about this Danish band. I had no clue what they were singing about and was sure most fans didn't either, which struck me as pretty fucking stupid. It took me years to shake off this prejudice against bands not singing in a tongue I could understand. I also remember holding a grudge against the K-Town scene for dressing up like 70s punks: mohawks, studs and everything. It seemed 'fake' to me. So no, I was not one of the early converts. My brain was still growing into a mould formed after the cast of 'Damaged' back then. I didn't get APA at all! It was much later when I came to appreciate Amdi Petersens Armé, but that's another story.
What made this band important was their raw sound and direct approach. Amdi Petersen's Armé played USHC without any attire whatsoever. Furthermore they sounded like they were serious about this punk thing. They might well have been one of the few bands that were able to transfer the urgency and simplicity of some of the great American outfits of the early 1980s without desperately trying to sound like them. Did they somehow conjure a time machine? No one knows. Listening to this discography today one can not deny these songs still sound fresh and urgent even though they were originally released over ten years ago. This is hardcore with hooks, something that's pretty damn rare these days as well. The crisp guitar sound, great sharp snare bangs and raw vocals are timeless and should appeal to anyone with a heart for classic hardcore punk. For those already in possession of both Amdi Petersens Armé's Ep's, this discography contains seven songs that were not on those releases of which three had previously not been released at all. Hjernespind gave this release the treatment it deserves. It's a document. The record comes in a gatefold sleeve, with a color photo book filled with pictures of livesets, the band practicing and many flyers. Lyrics are included and Daniel Distort wrote a piece about the band as an introduction. This Lp looks and sounds great and is well worth the 20 euros.

Aspirina Infantil - El Reino De La Stupidez Lp (Metadona, Beat Generation)
After several 7”s and a flexi Aspirina Infantil return with their debut 12”. 'El Reino De La Estupidez' is the first record I hear by them. This band hails from Mallorca, a Spanish island in the Mediteranean Sea with about 800 000 inhabitants. The place has produced an impressive number of good punk rock bands, labels and records over the last years putting most of us punks to shame. Worth mentioning in this context is Trance, which Aspirina Infantil shares half its members with.
Aspirina Infantil plays energetic punk rock with a hardcore bend sung in Spanish tongue. The drumming is fast giving the songs a hardcore feel. The vocals however are mostly sung and the guitar throws in plenty of melodic leads, which would make me label Aspirina Infantil as a punk rock group in the end, one that likes to keep their pace high though, mind you. Several listens in I think 'El Reino de la Estupidez' is a strong and diverse record. Aspirina Infantil keeps things interesting throughout by creative song writing. Although generally playing fast the band employs a lot of tempo changes, which keeps the listener occupied. One of the reasons most punk rock bands don't do well on the 12” format is the lack of dynamic in their songs. Aspirina Infantil clearly have that covered though. They slow things down a bit on the B-side, opening with 'Si Tropiezo', in which the band gets close to the sentimental, which somehow does not bother me. I wonder what the song is about. Lyrics are included, but they're all in Spanish, which I unfortunately do not speak.
All in all 'El Reino de la Estupidez' is a nice punk rock record with lots of melody and hooks. Its sixteen songs are catchy and are bound to urge a live audience to slam dance or head bop depending on the person's age and need for violence and destruction. Seeing this band live must be fun. Maybe I should go to Mallorca sometime. There are great things happening there and Aspirina Infantil is part of that greatness. Get a local scene like Mallorca going and then start whinging punks!

Bad American - Pretty/ Ugly 12" (Bad Recordings) (12,50 euro)
This Philly hardcore band released a good Ep a year or two ago and has been working on this 12” Ep since. It took a while before ‘Pretty/Ugly’ actually saw the light of day, but here it finally is. Bad American recruited a new drummer since their last record, but it’s not just the line-up that has changed. The band also developed a slower and heavier approach to their song writing. If this is due to the new member is not known to me, but it makes for an interesting difference with their previous material. While Bad American was mainly playing fast on their debut Ep, this eight song 12” contains several mid-paced stompers as well and it’s during these tracks that the band really gets to shine in my opinion. What made me like Bad American before remains intact on ‘Pretty/Ugly’; their anger. This band sounds PISSED! This can mainly be attributed to singer Ray’s vocals which are harsh and raspy. He has the kind of vocal style that makes one wonder if the guy can talk at all after doing a live set. Heavy bass riffs and drumming form the solid foundation for the music on this record. During the slower tracks guitar player Cobra moves away from the riffing and adds an extra layer of guitar cries, which gives these songs a dirgey vibe I quite enjoy.
The record kicks off with ‘Dirty Waters’, which might be the best song on this 12”. It’s a heavy track with great mean lyrics, but somehow it doesn’t work too well as a record opener. Perhaps it would have been better to start off with a fast one that immediately grabbed the listener by the balls instead? At times Bad American gets so tough the band almost brushes shoulders with some noise rock. ‘Pre-Load’ is a good example of this. It’s the singer screaming his lungs out over a slow three chord riff covered in guitar wailing. Apparently the inspiration for this ‘song’ came from Ray’s workplace. It doesn’t sound like he’s having too much fun there. In the end Bad American is a hardcore band though. Let there be no doubt about that. The collage artwork of the sleeve, which is a nod to the Freeze’s ‘Land of the Lost’, should be considered a sign of their love for classic hardcore even though Bad American isn’t the least bit reminiscent of those Boston vets. All in all Pretty/Ugly is a brutal hardcore record done by guys who should have known better than to start this kinda band, but did it anyway. You got to love them for that.

Bad American - American Dream Lp (Shogun) (12,50 euro)
Review up soon...









Bill Bondsmen - ...--. .-.-.- ... .-.-.- / -.-----..- .----. .-. . / ..-. ..- -.-. -.- .-.. 12" (Burning Sensations) (8 euro)
The story about this release is an obscure one. Some Dutch punk released two 12"s by Bill Bondsmen (of which this is the better) but somehow they ended up in his attic and most never got sold. To my knowledge the kid in question is still alive so why he never parted with these 12"s is a mystery to me. Perhaps they were of too much emotional value, perhaps he was told not to sell copies by voices in his head (it really was the band telling him not to (eds.)). Either way this 12" is some of the Bondsmen's best material and it's a shame that this release hasn't been available to the masses before. I don't feel like going into detail about this band's sound. They play intense hardcore. That's for sure. I've said it before, but I think Gaby's vocals are some of the best to be found in hardcore today. Most consider the "Swallowed by the World" Lp Bill Bondsmen's strongest release, but those who do obviously haven't heard this record. It's meaner, rawer and harsher. It has the sound the band had before the Lp came out and the songwriting qualities that the band got recognition for on their full length and succeeding single. This should be the Bondsmen record for those of you with a short attention span, because it delivers seven perfect hardcore tunes. Long live the 12" Ep! This might be the best Bondsmen record around. The artwork looks stupid, but rad.

P.s. Sailors, fill me in on what that morse code stands for. I wonder.

Bits of Shit - Cut Sleeves Lp (Homeless) (12,50 euro)
Bits of Shit hail from Melbourne, Australia. The band just returned from a fierce week of touring the US and I heard they were blast live through one of my many trustworthy confidants. Yes, I have ears all over the punk rock world. The band released its first record, a 7” , back in 2010, but supposedly they’ve been playing for many years. Their debut Ep went by largely unnoticed outside of Australia as far as I can tell. By the time I came to appreciate the record it was already long gone. Now there’s ‘Cut Sleeves’ to give all of you fellow sleepers a chance to get hip to the sounds of Bits of Shit after all.
That these boys are from the land down under is undeniable from the moment their singer Danny opens his throat. His snot drenched vocals in thick Australian accent are great and might just be what I like about the band most. Danny sounds juvenile and spiteful and I bet he’s showering kids in the front row at shows with his spittle. Good for them. It’s hard to believe it’s actually a guy over thirty you’re hearing through your speakers. I’ve got a feeling we’re dealing with one sassy bloke here. The vocals – howls would be more accurate in places - have the same appeal to me as those of Mike Hudson, but I’m also reminded of Ron House perhaps because of a shared sense of wit. Google those names and you’ll scold me for being a follower of the Distort cult, but I honestly didn’t even know Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments came from the Ohio city thousands of hardcore boys fantasize about thanks to a certain fellow countryman of this band.
Musically Bits of shit play scummy punk rock with a classic feel. Their songs move from fast to slow in a very undisruptive manner. The fast songs are straight forward punk rockers while the slower ones have more dirge to them. It’s in those songs that the guitar playing gets more upfront. Andy really flails away on the strings when he gets a chance to. The guitar subtly demands attention by doing minor variations on the main riff in instrumental opener ‘F’, a jam I can see Bits of Shit open their set with. Things get even wilder and dissonant on ‘Traps’ and ‘Reign’, the second and last instrumental of the record. Most of the songs on this record are built around fairly simple riffs - some counting a mere two notes – carried mainly by the bass playing. The bass sound is forceful and it really drives the songs, which I love. The guitar sound is buzzy and sharp. At times the guitar player does simple riffing, but I like it most when he moves away from a song’s foundation and gets wild and crazy. He is also the one who should be credited for the beautiful xylophone sounds that can be heard on ‘Red Blade’, which probably is the calmest song on this record. ‘Cut Sleeves’ gets wrapped up by a song called ‘Intro’ which is a bit backwards, but you can’t really blame the band. They’re from Australia after all. I could have said an intro at the end of the record is like the world upside down which although funny, would have been a lot less offensive.
This is a perfect punk rock record that doesn’t get boring or tedious at any point which is quite an accomplishment with thirteen songs of which a few get close to the five minute mark. I’d call this Lp flawless if it wouldn’t make me feel like a shady salesman. The only thing bad about his record is the artwork, but I read on the band’s website that they were really excited about it. It’s their record so who am I to disagree? Get hip to these Australians already. You know you want to.

Brain F - Sleep Rough Lp (Static Shock)
Review up soon...






Canadian Rifle - Visibility Zero Lp (Residue, Squirrel Heart)
Year Zero is Canadian Rifle's first full-length. This Chicago three-piece plays music that could be labeled as melodic punk rock. The overall production of this record is quite raw. Adding to that are the vocals of both singers. They’re pretty harsh. The lyrics tend to focus on the bleaker side of life. "All good things leave and all bad things stay and multiply." There's not much cheer to be found on this piece of wax, but the songs aren't whiny and are delivered with conviction. Unlike their previous 7"s this Lp doesn't offer any hits, but that doesn't mean the songs aren't good. They are, but consistent full length is just a whole different bag than a good 7". I think Canadian Rifle delivered a strong melodic punk rock record with Visibility Zero. So if melodic punk rock is your kinda thing I'd recommend you to pick this one up. This record won't kick your teeth in, but is a nice listen just as well.

Cardiac Arrest - In the Mouth of Madness Lp (Even Worse, Way Back When)
Yes, the Lp that has kept straight ahead USHC hardcore lovers worldwide in anticipation for close to a decade finally sees the light of day! Who would have thought? I think pretty much everybody involved with this project, has doubted if it would come together at one point or another. Turns out it did! Cardiac Arrest were among the most praised 1980s throwback USHC outfits of the mid 2000s. They were part of the scene around Richmond, Virginia's No Way Records. Both the band's Ep's were well received at the time. A full-length was the logical next step. Supposedly the band started working on 'In the Mouth of Madness' shortly after 'Life's A Dead End' came out in 2006, and yet the record only came out anno 2014, turning the project into a running gag among St. Louis punks in the years in between. I'll do the math for you. It took eight (!) years for this record to come to be. Whether that is amazing or downright strange is for you to decide, but one can not deny that it showcases some serious commitment and persistence on the band's part.
The big question of course is: was this record worth the wait? I find this hard to say. 'In the Mouth of Madness' serves the listener eleven tracks of no thrills 1980s inspired USHC with an obvious nod to some of the Boston greats and 'Pick Your King'-era Poison Idea. It's not all that different from the band's earlier material. This record is good for what it is. Those who've been craving for new Cardiac Arrest material will not be disappointed, but it will not convert those unimpressed by the band before. The questions you should ask yourself is: Do I want to hear a new Cardiac Arrest record? Some won't, some will. I'm sure these guys don't care either way. They're probably still amazed that this whole thing came through at all.
Had this record been released six years ago, it would probably have caused more of a stir in hardcore land. Today it leaves less of an impression. 'In the Mouth of Madness' came a day after the fair. No Way Records is gone and the 1980s USHC revival, which was all the rage ten years ago, suffered from a severe backlash and had to make room for 'mysterious guy hardcore', which by now is out of vogue too. Funny how styles come and go. That's fine. There'll always be people that want to hear new bands play straight forward hardcore that one can scream along and build a pit to. That's a good thing. Those fellars already know they need this record. If you're one of them and haven't obtained a copy of this Lp from the band on their recent Euro tour, you can now pick it up from me. So why don't you?

Cuntz - Aloha Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
Cuntz are a bunch of creeps from Melbourne playing noise rock. That was what I considered a decent description of the sounds to be found on this record at first, but after this Lp had spend some serious time on my record player I reconsidered. Overall Cuntz' music is stripped down to the bones, to their very marrow. The minimalist approach to songwriting might just be what defines this band. That's why I don't think 'noise rock' suffices as a categorization here. Although the nasty attitude is definiely there, the music isn't rocking whatsoever regardless of the AC/DC solo they rip off in 'Punt'. These eleven songs are however a perfect soundtrack for bad times and I wouldn't be surprised if these guys were heavy druggers.
Cuntz' singer sounds agressive and thuggish at times. In most songs his vocals play an inferior role to the music. They get buried by the instruments to a large degree. However, that doesn't make him an unessential part of the band. Although it's not important what the man is actually saying, his voice adds to the overall confusion and discomfort contained in the music. Take 'Mum' and 'Hip Hop' for example. Even so there are lines to be found on this record that I really love such as 'If you guys are leaving, I might stay for a while' in 'Punt'. That is some solid anti-social sentiment and alienation in one sentence right there.
The guitar playing is a total mind fuck. You might expect thick riffs, dirgey wails and dissonant solos from this band, but nothing like that is to be found on this record. The guitar sound is actually very thin. Cuntz' guitar playing isn't violently lashing out at the listener, instead it's taking weak little pecks over and over and over again. It is annoying like a musquito buzzing around your head keeping you from your much needed sleep. The bass playing is unmotivated and slow. It's the musical equivalent to reluctance. In its sludgier moments the four string lays down grooves for songs, which is nice, but I like it even better when the bass player just plays a monotonous thud that goes nowhere for an entire track. It leaves close to nothing to hold onto for the listener and makes listening to this record a disorienting experience.
Opening song 'Homeless' seems to be a favourite among those familiar with this record, but to me it's not the best song. 'Lost' and 'Meth' make a perfect couple of songs on side A . The main riff in 'Lost' conjures the image of someone walking down the paths of a maze and taking a turn in the hope to find the exit around the corner. Of course this hope turns out to be in vain. Around the corner is just another alley exactly like the one left behind. And the riff starts all over again. And again. And again. No hope. Just endless repetition until the song is over not unlike the lifes most of us live. The topic of 'Meth' should be obvious from the song's title. Again a monotonous slow and dumb riff is at the foundation of the song. This time the singer follows the melody of the instruments which has a hypnotizing effect. The line 'Crystal Meth Amphetamines in my eyes and in my dreams' was probably the one that stuck with me most after spinning 'Aloha'. But even though Cuntz get close to being catchy here, albeit in an ugly way, even this song falls apart each time the chorus ends.
I could write something about every track on 'Aloha', but my review is too lengthy as it is so I'll just say that this is a solid record I highly recommend to those who like their music weird, ugly and anti-social. It took me some time to fully appreciate this Lp, but now I love it. It's growing on me more with each spin.

Cuntz - Solid Mates Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
Second longplayer by these Aussie creeps. Supposedly Solid Mates was already recorded when Aloha, Cuntz' debut record, came out. It took about a year before it actually saw the light of day. People went apeshit for Aloha. I loved it too, but after spinning Solid Mates multiple times I've come to the conclusion that Solid Mates is the better record. It is rather different. Aloha could have been a sonic experiment, a bunch of drugged out weirdos recording a jam session at their practice space. It was basically one big violent and depressing mess. Solid Mates on the other hand sounds playful and fun; playful like a mongoloid child smashing other kids' toys leaving them in tears, fun like a perverted joke that makes most guests at the party turn their heads away disapprovingly except for your uncle who never says anything and you know is seeing a shrink. He is laughing hysterically, because he had one too many. Although I will stand by my statement that no band has ever sounded like Flipper or will ever sound like Flipper, Solid Mates is tapping from the same black humor and nihilism filled barrel as the one your favourite San Fran nuts got drunk on. Cuntz are doing their own thing, but are coming from a similar place, ya know.
Overall the ten track on Solid Mates are more focussed than Cuntz' previous material. This record contains songs making Solid Mates more of a punk record as opposed to Aloha, which was just noise. It was one big mess and a perfect one at that. Cool. Sure. But it's great to hear Cuntz develop into something else. Instead of going for the same formula, as many bands do, they've redefined themselves on this record. Don't let this scare you off though. Those who liked Aloha should definitely give Solid Mates a shot too. Few will be disappointed. Both records have their own appeal and in the end, you really need them both. Preferring one over the other, is actually totally unnecessary, but hey, that's the way this review turned out. To me Cuntz remain one of the most impressive bands Homeless Records put out in the last years. I'm really looking forward to the release of their first single on Total Punk. Now let's hope these guys won't throw in the towel before coming to Europe like Bits of Shit did.

Dan Melchior - K-85 Lp (Homeless) (14 euro)
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Dark Times - Give Lp (Sheep Chase) (15 euro)
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Deaf Wish - Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
“I just wanna say Africa in a song, Afffrica.” That's the haunting line Deaf Wish opened their debut Lp with back in 2007. Somehow that line always stuck with me. I'll admit I was a late convert to this band. I remember reading a review of 'Reality and Visions', the band's second 12”, on Terminal Boredom years ago and thinking to myself: “Why have I not heard of this band before? This sounds like something I'd drool all over.” This turned out to be correct.
Hearing this record has me immediately reach for a Hüsker Dü comparison, but I feel like there are way more subtleties and influences to this band than a kid that did not grow up in Australia in the late 1980s and early 1990s can possibly grasp. Like the Hüskers Deaf Wish know how to craft songs with hooks without sacrificing fervor or grit. Aggravated vocals make sure the tunes do not become too nice and accessible. Deaf Wish are really intense. Melody, feedback and fiery vocals perfectly fuse on this record. The sound bits between songs give the listener some much needed space to catch breath. Samples easily become tedious intervals one has to sit through to get to the next song, but the clips on this record actually add something to the listening experience. They contribute to the overall atmosphere. Although there's clearly a firm aesthetic at the root of Deaf Wish's music, they take different angles with their songs. Opening track 'Green Flame' is a wild, dirgey and violent punk tune, whereas 'Freeze the Sound' is basically a ballad heading for disaster. This record is diverse without losing its consistence. It's a great release. It's the kind of record that will give you goosebumps whilst listening to it late at night. It cuts straight through your skin, into your soul. Yes, it's that good.
I'm glad Homeless Records made this record available again. It was out of print for a few years. This edition is on beautiful green vinyl. Deaf Wish seemed to have fallen apart after their third full-lenght and the European tour they did to back it. However, a new Ep came out on Sub Pop last year so it seems they're still a band in one form or other. Catch this bunch live if you ever have the opportunity. I'm still figuring out a way to live with myself after passing up on a show of theirs in my hometown. Although I'm glad this group is still around, their early stuff remains their best material. Some say this Lp is their strongest release yet and I might just agree.


Gas Rag - Beats Off 12" (Even Worse)
After two 7”s, of which one was their demo pressed to vinyl, Chicago's Gas Rag return with a 12”, the format hardcore bands generally steer clear of. Some say that hardcore should only be released on the magnificent 7” format. I get that, but it's obviously purist horseshit. I'm not falling for it and neither should you.
'Beats Off' delivers eleven new stomping hardcore tracks. The drumming is loud and primitive. Is this drummer man or ape? Is that a dbeat I'm hearing? Everything seems to be qualified as such these days and I still don't get what it means. Guess what? I don't care! These riffs are fast and wild. The guitars sound shrill. Dirty short feedback laden solo's are included in many songs, which works out well. I don't remember the guitar player doing that all that much on previous records, but maybe I just haven't been paying attention. The bass player isn't doing anything particularly interesting, but the low end keeps the songs from sounding canny. Gas Rag's main appeal to me is their singer. He sounds wild. He's almost barking, but without desperately trying to sound like Choke of Negative FX. Good. Too many bands are going for that and it has become beyond boring. Gas Rag's singer's delivery forunately is anything but contrived. It's blunt, angry and in your face. Animalistic!
I had expected these songs to be about getting fucked up and burning the city hall, but instead Gas Rag covers some standard fair semi-political hardcore themes. Nothing too thrilling, which is somewhat disappointing. Then again the lyrics are not what's important here. It's the overall vibe of this band that makes them great. Gas Rag sounds violent and destructive. A Gas Rag set is bound to be mayhem. I bet they leave a nice bloody and sweaty mess after each show. Someone once labeled this brand of hardcore as music for glue huffers, but I wouldn't know if that's accurate for I've not sniffed any glue since my days of curiosity in primary school. But even without any glue up my nose I thoroughly enjoy this record. I don't know if that's because it's really good or just a breath of fresh air after a few years of craze about shitty bands. Gas Rag are not pulling any tricks. They just play fast and violently. This 12" delivers. You can count on Even Worse Records for music like this. Supposedly one of the guys of Cülo is also in this band which would explain the excessive use of dick imagery on the sleeve. Very classy. I have no idea what'll be next for this group, but I'm hoping they'll make it across the pond sometime soon.

Gestapo Khazi - Jewel of the Land Lp (Self Released) (12,50 euro)
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GG King - Unending Darkness Lp (Scavenger of Death) (12,50 euro)
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Hassler - Fed, Worked and Watered  Lp (Cut the Cord That, 
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Hoax - Selftitled Lp (Adagio 830, La Vida Es Un Mus) (12,50 euro)
This band was undeniably the hardcore outfit most talked about in 2013. Hoax have been at the center of attention in the hardcore scene ever since the release of their first Ep. People were going insane about its opening song 'Faggot'. That was a heavy and strong track indeed. However I always thought it was revealing you never heard anybody about any of the other songs included on the band's debut. That pretty much sums up my problem with this band. They do what they do well at times, but fail to capture me overall.
The Hoax craze that kept hardcore land in its grip for over a year further increased my aversion to the band. People were talking about Hoax a lot, but I never felt like there was all that much to say. I'll admit that's partly because I prefer to loath anything popular over agreeing with the masses, but at the same time I feel like I did really give this band a chance. I own their first three records and even went to see them play on their European tour in early 2013.
I am writing this review several months after this 12” came out. It seems Hoax is no more. The craze has died down. After the hype faded away, my hate also tempered a bit. I can listen to this record from a different angle now. I can approach it less spitefully. This record is heavy, ugly and violent. Perhaps it's a good thing kids lost their shit over this group. They're a perfect band to built a mosh pit to, beat your friends' teeth out to, punch strangers black eyes to. These twelve songs showcase a lot of anger. The band delivers some powerful riffs and the vocals sound brutal. However, what the guy is growling about largely remains a mystery and after a few tracks his delivery starts to sound really bland. There's too little dynamic in the vocals to keep me engaged. That also applies to the music. In the end there's little that sticks, which ultimately makes this record a forgettable listen for me.
I feel like Hoax was more about aesthetic than about actual music, an art project if you will. They took a formula, worked it and became what they were aiming for. They did this well. This approach however, left little room for exhibiting personality unfortunately. That's what this record lacks. Why the rage? Why the anger? These questions remain unanswered. All you know is the band is pissed. This leaves me unsatisfied, but maybe you could care less. If a record embodying anger sounds exciting to you, this could be your jam. I want more than a concept from a hardcore band though. No amount of blood at a live show can make up for lack of character. The packaging on this thing is top notch. I do have to give Hoax that. The aesthetics are definitely taken care of. Too bad that's where it ends.

De Høje Hæle - Skal Vi Aldrig Videre? Lp(Hjernespind) (12,50 euro)
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De Høje Hæle - Kold Traet & Bange 12" (Hjernespind)
It's been a while since we heard from De Hoje Haele, which is Danish for 'the High Heels' if I'm not mistaken. Their last record was the 7” on Burka for Everybody which was a bit of a letdown to me. Two of the three songs on that record I already knew from their tapes and although the new one was nice, I think the recording wasn't too great. Both the band's debut Ep and first Lp however were really good records. 'Skal Vi Aldrig Videre' was without a doubt my favourite album of 2010. These three Danes are amazing songwriters. They have an extremely minimalist approach to their music. Both the bass and the guitar are straight plugged into the amps. No pedals, no effects, no distortion. The drummer plays a simple drumkit. And yet, despite all of this, De Hoje Haele are able to create a sound of their own, which I would describe as fun and laid back. This is perfect music to do nothing to. Music for stoners? Perhaps, but I don't smoke and love this band just as well. Music for slackers would be more apt, I guess. I can identify with that. De Hoje Haele write short and catchy songs that show a lot of creativity. The guitar playing is super playful. Magnus can play that six string. I love the little leads he does in each and every song. Myre's bass playing is the driving force of the band. The bass guitar sounds warm and full and matches Magnus' shrill guitar playing perfectly. This one sided 12” serves the listener four new tunes. The last one, 'Der Er Ingen Som Forstär Hvad Der Foregär Inden Under Mit Hår' – don't ask me what it means – is the hit to me. Perhaps it's because the 'Ja, ja, ja, ja' bit is the only part of this record I can sing along to. The main bass line in this song is really cool too. They made a clip (with their new drummer) for the second track 'Der Er Mange, Der Siger Miget' you can check on youtube. Fun shit. It's good to have these guys back with a new record. Although it only contains four songs it's worth picking up, because they're four good songs. I do wonder what made them release these tunes on a one sided 12” though. Why not release a 7” Ep with two songs on each side? It would have made more sense to me. Plus it'd have been cheaper to ship. But then again that's probably not a thing these guys break their heads over. They just want to hang and play and that has its charm. I finally got to see the band live at an independent music festival last year and they were great. If you get the chance to see them, make sure you get your slacker ass of the couch. I'm sure they'll be touring again soon enough.

Imaginary Dictionary - You Can't Spell Dictionary... Without Dicks 12" (Hardware)
Imaginary Dictionary is the new band of Vanni and Boens, former members of the late great Vogue. Remember Vogue? For a while they were considered the hardcore promise of the Benelux. A return to the great days of Restless Youth and Dead Stop was announced, days I missed out on, because I was still rocking out to nü-metal at the time. Vogue were a great band. I only saw them play once, but it was the best shitty set I ever saw. Many fascinating rumors have been circulating about the people Vogue consisted of, but I'll not get into specifics here. This review is bound to get too long as it is. Anyway, these rumours always made me think of Vogue as an anomaly; true weirdos playing violent music, because they have to, not giving a rat's ass about anyone's opinion. They'd probably hate your guts for having an opinion at all.
Vogue's demise came as a surprise to me. I was dissappointed. However, it was inevitable that these guys would return to the hardcore arena one way or the other. It was only a matter of time before we'd hear Vanni's riffs and Boens' sweet voice on record once more. That time is now. The vocals and mean nihilistic lyrics were one of Vogue's main appeals so it's a pleasure to hear Boens back on the mic. A quick glance at the lyric sheet, will make clear that his perspective on life hasn't changed one bit since his Vogue days. The tone is immediately set in opening song 'Mutant Bastards' with lines like: “If you want a message forget it! If you think I yell this because it is important: fuck that. That shit is pointless.” Lyrics like these still make my heart of stone get all fuzzy and warm and this record is stuffed with them. Hardcore has to be bleak and this 12” definitely is. Hate is often feigned, but you can tell the real thing from posturing. Vogue was the real deal and so is Imaginary Dictionary. These guys are down on life. Nas' “Life's a bitch and then you die” seems to be a line they live by. I make this reference because Vanni and Boens declared their love for hiphop in a MRR interview once and I think you can tell rap is an influence in the lyrics.
Musically this band isn't far removed from Vogue either. They're loud and agressive. The riffs are heavy. Most songs are mid-paced, although things are slowed down in places. All in all it's save say that if you liked Vogue, you'll like Imaginary Dictionary too. That's nice, but I'm curious where things will go from here. I don't really know what to think of the artwork. The idea is cool, but the execution so-so. The character cutting his own dick off on the back of the sleeve should definitely have been on the front though. As if these nuts would care what I think about their artwork... Good for them! Go catch Imaginary Dictionary live if you can, because even if they suck they're still pretty damn great.

Inutili - Satori 12" (Bat Shit) (15 euro)
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LiveFastDie - Hit Stains Lp (Almost Ready) (14 euro)
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Manikin - Stop the Sirens Lp (Mastermind) (12,50 euro)
This Houston, TX, band has been going for quite a few years now and yet they seem to be relatively unknown and highly underappreciated. Their first piece of vinyl saw the light of day in 2004. Manikin has released four singles and three albums since of which most were only released overseas. ‘Stop the Sirens’, their third 12”, is the first record that got a pressing on our side of the pond. So this is the moment for Europeans to wake up and acknowledge this unique and amazing band. It blows my mind that so few people seem to care about them! Basically Manikin plays post punk, but that’s a genre that can go all ways, right? Manikin’s songs are build around simple plodding bass lines. The bass riffs are pretty much the melody of the songs. The guitar playing is minimal and subtle throughout the record. At times there’s no guitar at all. Some tunes include a trumpet player, which I really like. What do punks have against brass anyway? The horn cries create an ominous atmosphere. In some songs the trumpet wails and the guitar suddenly comes to the fore. Together they violently lash out for a few seconds giving the song a shambolic and chaotic vibe, but soon we’re back to the bass line that was at the sole of the song to begin with. There is something futuristic about Manikin’s music. It’s cold and impersonal. The vocals are desperate and distant. At times they’re delivered in a robotic way. The music creates an atmosphere that reminds me of old scifi movies. I can’t help but think of ‘Blade Runner’ each time I spin this record, but that might have something to do with the artwork as well. It brings me back to that scene where the robot midget leads Holden through a giant room filled with mannequins. The viewer knows Pris is among them pretending to be a puppet, hoping that Holden doesn’t notice her. There’s that tension in the music, that vibe of a world that isn’t ours, where everything is strange to us. A world we can not understand. It’s impressive how well this band transfers a mood of alienation. I’ve read people saying Manikin’s got some good songs, but that not all of it is worthwhile. That’s taking the wrong angle here in my opinion. This band isn’t about songs. Manikin tries to create a world that doesn’t exist and sucks you into it as you listen to their records. They do this amazingly well. I think this is their best record, but have to admit that this is also the record I know best. So there’s still a lot of discovering for me to do as well. I'd argue that there's no better point to start with than this record so what are you waiting for?

Los Monjo - La Vida Que Todos Envidian 12" (Trabuc, Discos MMM) (12,50 euro)
After a slew of 7”s Los Monjo return with this 12” Ep. I still remember when Los Monjo and their sister band Putas Mierdas appeared on the scene, stirring an immediate sensation for new bands from Mexico. Hardcore was a fairly new phenomena in my life. I was still frantically investigating it, getting my hands on the releases of whatever band I could relate to. The teenage angst, frustration and anger contained in the lyrics of bands such as Cut the Shit drew me to the style. My main focus was USHC, because I could understand its lyrics. When Los Monjo's first releases came out, people were going crazy about them. I didn't care, because I don't speak Spanish.
In retrospect I missed out. No surprises there. Los Monjo plays great gritty hardcore punk. There's a sinister atmosphere throughout this record that taps into the bleak everyday life of a Mexican punk. These eight songs are driven by tightly pick played bass lines. The four string is really stealing the show on this record. I can't emphasis enough how much I love the bass playing here. The drums move from primal beating to drum roll to drum roll. The drummer is throwing around rolls like nobody's business. It's great. Topping it all are the vocals, which are gruff and give Los Monjo just that extra rawness giving 'La Vida Que Todos Envidian' a classic feel.
Although every song on this record is a keeper, 'Rock Basura' is definitely one of the standout tracks, an anthem if ever there was any. The guitar delivers a simple but great solo underneath which the bass travels around the scales. You'll find yourself screaming along to the chorus of this song regardless of knowing what the words mean. This is heartfelt music played by kids who consider punk more than just a hobby. It's their life. 'La Vida Que Todos Envidian' is a great punk record full of hooks. I wish I knew what the lyrics were about. I tell myself my Spanish is improving as I desperately try to decipher Spanish lyric sheets so maybe someday I'll understand this one.

The Night Terrors - Back to Zero 2 x Lp (Homeless) (25 euro)
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The Night Terrors - Spiral Vortex Lp (Homeless) (14 euro)
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No - Great Space 12" (Static Shock) (12,50 euro)
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No Slogan - Aversion Therapy 12" (Residue)
At first No Slogan didn't do much for me. I heard one or two of their Ep's before and was not impressed. It took this 12" to turn my head. I dismissed these guys way too easily. No Slogan delivers a solid release with this 12". Their singer's gruff vocals add up well with the tough and raw sound of the music. Although a second guitarist often feels redundant to me No Slogan makes it work well. The lyrics are pretty bleak at times yet they are always delivered with both passion and conviction. It's hard to describe what makes this record so great, but it is. No Slogan just have the songwriting down. If you like classic hardcore punk (with an emphasis on the punk) I would recommend you to give this one a hear. You won't be disappointed. I can listen to the song "Death of Cool" all day.

Nueva Autoridad Democrática - 12" (Solo Para Punks)
Alright, I'll be honest with you, I find it impossible to keep up with bands coming from Spain, hell Barcelona alone. It should go without saying Spain has been at the front of contemporary hardcore punk for the past years smugly fetching the torch from the weakening hands of Sweden and Denmark. This 12” by Madrid's Nueva Autoridad Democrática, their vinyl debut, is on the anthemic side of hardcore punk coming from Spain, putting emphasis on melody and ignoring the dbeat. It's more punk than hardcore, but I'd still label it as hardcore punk, ha.
Nueva Autoridad Democrática's demo tape blew me away. Its songs struck me as timeless and classic. When the band's 12” came out, I gave it a couple of spins, but it failed to make an impression. Main reasons was most of the songs were also included on the demo although the band of course rerecorded them for this release. I received this 12” in a big batch of other records and because those were all new to my ears, they got more time on the record player eventually leading to this 12” remaining criminally ignored by yours truly. Nueva Autoridad Democrática got swamped by their fellow country man. Sad but true as the Metallica lyric goes.
My neglect for this record doesn't say a thing about the music it contains. Nueva Autoridad Democrática delivers ten strong punk rock tracks on this 12”. The songs have hooks and the vocals are lively and melodic. Particularly striking is the bass playing. The bass player sure loves slides. He doesn't docilely follow the guitar riffs, which I appreciate. The mastering on this one is balanced making no instrument nor the vocals predominate. No rewriting the books here, but a good hardcore punk record all the same. I was bummed most of these songs were included on the demo tape, but let's face it, you didn't hear the demo so each one of these songs will be new to you. So do yourself a favor and pick this one up.

Las Otras - Devolver El Golpe 12" (Discos Sense Nom) (12,50 euro)
After a much lauded 7” Ep, Barcelona's Las Otras move up to the 12” Ep. 'Devolver El Golpe' is released on the band's own label Discos Sense Nom, which employs the symbol of the squatting movement as its logo. That gives you a clue of what you're in for; political hardcore in Spanish tongue.
Las Otras play bare hardcore punk. All 9 songs on this 12” are fast and direct. They all clock in around the one minute mark, making this a proper 12” Ep, not a full-length by a stretch. There's no adornment here whatsoever. The drumming is loose and loud, the guitar playing simple and direct. Most striking is the harsh snare drum sound, which dominates the drumming to the point of drowning the rest of the kit out. In a way I like that. It demands attention. Both the snare and guitar are shrill, which leaves the burly bass to cover for the low end. The four string plays a fairly subtle role in Las Otras' trebly sound. It generally supports the guitar playing. It is in the songs where the bass crawls away from the riffs however an extra layer of impending doom is created. Final song 'Rivales' is a good example.
Las Otras' vocalist is upfront. Iéri mostly screams, but there is room for melody in her vocals. Her words are included in both Spanish and English on the insert. Thumbs up for that. Leftist, I'd say anarchist and feminist politics are covered. The band consists entirely of women. There's a lot of anger in the lyrics. It strikes me as sincere and not just a pose. Several songs are literally calls to arms. Opening song 'Tragedia' for example ends with the line “es hora de luchar” meaning “it's time to fight”. It's cool the songs are calling for action. Political lyrics are often mere analysis, which borders on academics, which is boring. Although I'm not sure if I agree with the lyrical content - cynical as I am, I do appreciate a band wearing their conviction on their sleeves. That seems a rarity in today's cynical world. One can bicker whether or not the themes addressed here are current, but Las Otras make them sound relevant. The more I listen to this record, the more I hear subtle twists in its songs. It's a cool and urgent release worth picking up. Nice artwork too.

Perspex Flesh - 12" (Static Shock) (12,50 euro)
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The Real Energy - Beyond Delay Lp (Erste Theke Tonträger) (12,50 euro)
Hmm, the Energy seems to go by the name of the Real Energy these days. My guess is they got involved with some other more serious band that was also called the Energy that threatened to sue. That made the Ropes change their name back to the Repos, right? Oh world, how small have you become. Make no mistake though, this is the one and only Real Energy!
The Energy has always been hard to peg down and 'Beyond Delay' serves some new surprises. The group seems to reinvent itself with every release – like Madonna. One constant, and the band's main appeal to me, are Arthur's careless vocals and sick lyrics. I was once told by an insider the guy would never come to practice, because he hated to leave the house. 'Brain Sick Beyond Repair'? It might very well be the case. Someone once said that Chris Erba could make a mariachi band sound vicious, well, Arthur would make a straight edge youth crew band sound like a heavy drugger outfit. On 'Beyond Delay' the guy sounds even further removed from us squares than before. Out is a lot of the in your face hatred that made the Energy's first album so great. In comes a conscious that does not consider emotion an option at all. There's a sense of elevation in the carelessness displayed or is it sadness I hear in some songs? Not sure... The music matches the vocal development. The guitar drifst away from the songs all the time in a hallucinogenic way, creating a trip-like atmosphere. There's a lot of psychedelic soloing happening on this release.
When I heard the first Energy record I was swept off my feet. It was one of those records that came out of nowhere and immediately grabbed me. 'Beyond Delay' might not be as mind blowing as the band's debut record, but how could it be? All the same, I think the (Real) Energy is at least as good as some other Houston outfits, which have been causing a stir in punk rock land. Yes, I'm talking about you, Secret Prostitutes, but I forgive ya! 'Beyond Delay' is an interesting listen and the opening song has already firmly rooted itself in the remains of my brain. The artwork is really nice and fitting too. Perhaps I just came to love this band so much that I enjoy this record despite it not being as good as their first. At the very least 'Beyond Delay' is a challenging punk rock record, but it might as well turn out to be a future classic. It's got the character for it. Supposedly this will be the band's last record. Shame...

Real Regular - Lp (Saucepan Records) (12,50 euro)
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Red Red Red - New Action Lp (Big Neck) (14 euro)
When the Piranhas called it quits in the early 2000s, their drummer Ryan started a new band called Red Red Red in which he took up vocal and guitar duties. I discovered this band’s first record, ‘Mind Destroyer’, rather late – after reading a review of this Lp actually – and it really impressed me. ‘New Action’ is quite a different record and I had to get used to that. This Lp is all over the place which might have something to do with the addition of a second guitar player. The band is constantly shifting gears, jumping from one idea to the next and all of this is happening in the span of one mere song. ‘New Action’ is definitely not a record that lets itself be labeled easily and I had to listen to it quite a bit before I felt like could say anything at all about it. One thing this record definitely isn’t is predictable or stale. Red Red Red is primarily a guitar band. There are many guitar solos and the band uses a wide range of effects throughout the eleven songs on this record. At times Red Red Red get close to being a bit wanky, but the band doesn’t lose its immediacy at any point so I guess they get away with it. At no point does the band lose itself in ego stroking guitar magic though. There’s simply no time for that. Red Red Red is changing pace all the time and they keep things moving in all directions simultaneously. I guess these songs would be best described as wild and chaotic. Apart from the constant guitar mayhem something that really stands out are Ryan’s distorted vocals which are aggressive and in your face. Like on ‘Mind Destroyer’ Ryan also plays saxophone on some of the tracks here. I know some of you punks hate the instrument, but I think it works well for this kind of music. It makes the whole thing even more of a mess. My favourite songs are the last ones on the B-side, because they seem more focused somehow. Ryan’s former band mate Bumbo jumps in on bass on two of these. The four string takes a prominent place on these tracks so of course they grabbed my attention – being a bass player and all. I don’t know if there’s such a thing as a ‘Detroit sound’, but it doesn’t come as a surprise to me that Red Red Red shares their habitat with Human Eye. Obviously they don’t sound the same, but there are definitely similarities. If you like to keep things clear and simple, this Lp is not for you. With that said this is a pretty cool record by a band that isn’t afraid to try things, which is something that should be applauded in the clone filled wasteland that is rock and roll these days.

Sacred Shock - You're Not With Us 12" (Residue)
Sacred Shock’s selftitled debut on Schizophrenic Records blew me away last year so my expectations for this release were high. Does this record live up to those? Certainly! In fact it’s even better than their 7”. The drums sound a bit different on this record than on their previous release. It’s less heavy on the cymbals, which I personally had to get used to. What makes Sacred Shock a great band is their amazing guitar leads. They’re both catchy and heavy at the same time. Sacred Shock’s singer also adds to the band’s unique sound. His vocals are brutal yet melodic. An uncommon combination. Nine tracks on this 12” of which one is a cover of Headcleaners “Kill The Royalties”. They definitely have their own take on this song though. Sacred Shock is a contemporary hardcore band I am really excited about and they deliver a flawless hardcore record with You’re Not With Us. This is one of the records I listened to most in 2009.

Sack-O'-Woes - The Paranoids are coming Lp (Loop Rekords)
Apparently Sack-O'-Woes went through hell to get this release available. When the first run of this record arrived in their mail box, they found out that the plant had pressed the wrong mix onto the vinyl. It sounded like shit. Unfortunately for them the records were already paid for so they had to pay for another pressing with the right mix (the lesson here boys and girls: ALWAYS do a test pressing first). This one-sided silkscreened Lp is the final result and the music sure does not disappoint. Sack-O'-Woes play punk rock with garage leanings and they do it well. What else could you expect from three guys who have been kicking it since their teens and are over forty now? Sack-O'-Woes deliver seven infectious and rocking tunes on this Lp. The walking basslines push on some catchy guitar leads. Sack-O'-Woes' singer's vocals are raw as hell. I guess the music overall is. I simply can't believe that these guys are actually from the Netherlands. This is a great record. To save some money all the artwork is done by hand and it looks rad. I would like to take this opportunity to recommend the West Friesland authorities to send a copy of this record to all their teenagers. It might the get the kids dancing instead of killing themselves.

Secret Prostitutes - Welcome to Punk Lp (Bad Hair Life) (12,50 euro)
Second full-length by this prolific Houston three piece. The Secret Prostitutes have been cranking out records like nobody's business. In all honesty most of their releases sounded sort of the same to me, but why would you hold that against a group with songs this good? Great was my surprise the first time I played 'Welcome to Punk'. Its number of songs surpasses their previous full-length by two making a total of an impressive 25 songs! Although this is still undeniably a Secret Prostitutes record, the band is pulling some unexpected tricks on 'Welcome to Punk' and I'm loving it. The most striking difference with the band's earlier material is to be found in the vocal department. Adit used to sing pretty much every song, but on 'Welcome to Punk' an interesting blend of vocalists can be heard. Next to Adit there are several tracks on 'Welcome to Punk' on which a female singer takes the mic and the verses in 'Übermensch' are sung in a metal like grunt. I think the entire song is in German, but I'm not quite sure. The chorus definitely is “Ich bin ein Übermensch” though. Sweet!
All in all 'Welcome to Punk' is more retarded and diverse than earlier Secret Prostitutes' material. It is a better record for it. The insert lists an impressive twelve contributors to this Lp. I think you can tell ideas for 'Welcome to Punk' came from a wide range of individuals. What the Secret Prostitutes have gracefully done is merge these ideas into one record that is all over the place yet sounds consistent throughout. Although I would not have thought I'd enjoy songs like 'Galaxie', with its drum computer and minimal instrumentation, nor 'The Secret Prostitutes Theme', which incorporates a stick bass for crying out loud, if someone had described these tunes to me, both turn out to be excellent tracks.
Those of you afraid that the Secret Prostitutes have forgotten their roots, have no fear! These guys' strange fascination for the Cold War remains intact and they still deliver a shitload of short and catchy punk rock songs with this release. You will instantly be singing along to 'Necrophilia' and 'Kalashnikov' as well as to the 'Ost-Berlin, West-Berlin' part of the CCCP – Fideli Alla Linea cover. No, I had never heard of that band either. For all I know these Texans made the group up. It turns out that there isn't actually a song called 'Osama Bin Laden' on here, but 'Det Samme Vere Dag' sounds close enough so I'll just keep hollering the name of the former arch-enemy of the western world to the chorus of that song. This record is a fun listen from start to finish. The Secret Prostitutes already released a handful of splits since this thing came out. It seems impossible to keep up with this group but I'm going to keep trying regardless.

Sewers - Hoisted Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
Apparently I was the only one who didn't hear this band's demo tape, but I was told it created quite a stir in certain circles. 'Hoisted' is my introduction to Sewers. Consider me impressed. This is a solid record especially for a debut. In a way I'm glad I never heard their demo recordings, because it would probably have diminished the impact of this full-length.
Although the music is disjointed and odd, people have labeled this band as noise rock far too easily. Reason for this categorization is probably the vocals. It sounds as if Sewers' singer is unwillingly working his way down the lyric sheet. Either that or the entire recording session of his voice was done while he was stretching out after several days of sleep. There's some feedback – almost obligatory these days, isn't it - but it's not demanding much attention so Sewers stay far removed from the trite overuse of squaeling guitars today. The music is actually pretty bare. The guitar has a garage sound in places. The guitar does riffing here and there, but mostly jangles away to make things more of a mess. This record contains ten songs. The band calls them compositions on the insert, ha! Crazy kids! The guitar messes around over plump drumming and bass playing which fits the vocals. This description might have you think of LA's Lamps, but Sewers sound more down and out than Montey Buckles and his men. They don't share Lamps' triumphant stupidity. This music sounds like an enormous mutant slug waltzing over a city leaving hundreds of homes destroyed in its slime tracks, without even the slightest realization that actual people lived under the roofs just pulverized. It's violent without the intent to be. It's stupid without realizing it unlike the Lamps who are smart and act stupid. Big difference. While spinning this record I also keep getting back to early Drunks with Guns. Sewers don't sound anything like them, but they have a similar dragging and threatening vibe somehow. There's a clear cut potential of violence in these tunes.
This is a perfect record to enjoy a late night headache to. Mitch Cardwell described Sewers as 'A must for shut-in assholes that think they know everything.' I approve this message from this laptop screen and will get myself another cup of coffee as I hear the drunks outside have a good time.

Shovels - Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
I never heard of Shovels before I received this record in the mail. What immediately struck me was the artwork which seems to be a merge of the cover art of the first De Hoje Haele Ep and those odd dream catcher like figures the serial killer in True Detective is leaving all over the place. Too far fetched? Anybody familiar with those two references will have to acknowledge I'm being spot on here!
Shovels hail from Melbourne Australia, the city Homeless Records calls home so their pairing up is no surprise. This band fits in well with the recent Homeless catalogue. Shovels play a dark and brooding type of rock that's comparable to label mates such as the Stickmen, though more demure, and the Stabs, though far less vicious and mean. Shovels remain calm throughout this entire record. They have a fairly clean sound. The tunes are slow and droney and revolve entirely around the instrumentation. Although vocals are included, they are sparse and nowhere take the fore. Several of these eight tracks are actually completely instrumental. The bass drags the songs along and leaves space for both the drums and the guitar to give the songs color and character. That this will be the division of roles is clear from the very beginning of the record. The intro of 'MB Jacket' serves the listener a simple bass riff over which the guitar noodles while the drummer is doing some near virtuoso stuff. This only lasts seconds after which the song returns to its stripped down foundation. Shovels are very competent at building their songs up and then break them down again. They are not afraid to take their time, a sign of confidence totally granted as any close listener will recognize.
This is an impressive debut. Although more about atmosphere than about songs, it serves a number of tracks that will stick with you and haunt you without you even realizing perhaps. I feel like music employing sparse vocals nests itself in your brain in a more subconscious way than music that revolves around singing. Although not upbeat by any standards, Shovels aren't depressing or negative. Dark is probably the properest adjective. Dark and subtle. This is a good record, but be warned. It's definitely a grower.

The Sleaze - Tecktonik Girlz & Other Songs 12" (Total Punk) (12,50 euro)
Not much I know about the Sleaze really. For a while I thought these guys were a Vegetative State like band. (Remember them? Someone hook me up with a copy of the 'Feeding Tubes' Lp already!) You know, teenagers playing perfect punk without much of a frame of reference 'discovered' by some scene veterans. This turns out not to be the case. At some point I came across a picture of the Sleaze playing live. Turns out they're not teenagers and probably have plenty of hair in all kinds of disgusting places. Their music is childish and juvenile all the same though.
The Sleaze did a 7” on Fashionable Idiots years ago after which they fell apart and later on reformed again. I never heard their first record, but the stuff that came after was all quite excellent. After a slew of singles the band now serves us a 12” Ep, which is no letdown either. The Sleaze delivers 8 samples of punk rock snot on this platter. Technically it's only 7 songs, because the first and last track are different versions of the same song, but who's keeping score? These tunes will stick to you like boogers to the bottom of a desk. The songs are simple, but catchy. Straightforward guitar playing carries the tunes and is accompanied by snotty carefree lyrics which make the Sleaze stand out. This band seems to have the right attitude.
Let's wrap up with an illustration of this attutide. I remember Stitches in my Head fanzine once published an interview with the Sleaze reproachfully. It was obvious the band hadn't made a 'serious' attempt to answer questions. The editor thought the guys made an ass out of themselves and decided to print the thing to spite them. I thought that was all pretty funny. Maybe it was all set up to create a stir. Who knows in this day and age? What is real? Perhaps these guys are jerks. Perhaps they just don't care. Perhaps that's pretty punk. Perhaps it doesn't matter, because you need this record either way.

Snakerun - Onesided 12" (Bedside) (12,50 euro)
This band is not to be confused with the Australian hardcore band that used to go by the same name. I never liked that band. This Snake Run came from the Northwest of the States. This 12” is basically their demo tape from 2004 pressed to vinyl plus one extra song that was contributed to some compilation. Pressing demos to vinyl is an omnipresent phenomena in hardcore I've criticized before so I'll spare you my bitching this time. This record is an exception to the rule however. Why? Because as far as I know the tape wasn't distributed all over the place so many might never have heard these songs. They've been available on the net forever, but I had never heard of Snake Run before this record came out last year. So I'm glad Bedside made these song available on vinyl if only for that egoistic reason.
These seven hardcore tracks are rock solid and put many records that have been released after 2004 to shame. Although less complex than contemporaries such as Cold Sweat and Sex/Vid, I have no problem with placing Snake Run next to them. Time-wise this demo fits in exactly between the demise of Cold Sweat and the rise of Sex/Vid. Of course this band only released a demo tape during their short existence so they can't claim a legacy like the bands mentioned above, but they share their time and place. Is it a coincidence all three came from the Northwest? Perhaps... Another thing these three bands have in common is their blind hate and deep self loathing. The songs are rough and the lyrics harsh, bleak and nihilistic. I believed Sex/Vid and Cold Sweat each time I heard them and I believe Snake Run's singer when he screams he's had all that he can take. It's a mentality that can't be faked even though many have tried and a quality I miss in a lot of hardcore bands as of late.
Bedside Records plugs this record as Damaged-era flag with Choke on vocals, which is a bit misleading in my opinion. Terry does have that Boston bark, but there's no Ginn on guitar here. The guitar does run wild on the final track 'Get Away', but apart from that song there's not much dissonance going on. These guys can play though. Especially the bass playing is very inventive. Terry's vocals and lyrics are really what makes this band for me though. If you put this record on without expecting a second Flag, you'll find yourself listening to an impressive hardcore band that would almost have been forgotten. This a really good hardcore record that should appeal to those who like their hardcore mean and negative. Is it just me or are bands like these rare these days? Forget about fucking Hoax. This is the real deal, kids.

Soviet Valves - Death Trumps Romance 12" (Vertex) (15 euro)
Post-mortem release from these punk rockers from Perth, Australia. The initiated already know of this band through their excellent Ep on Smart Guy Records that dates all the way back to 2005. Because the band's singer Milos left the continent for Londen to pursue a career in architecture, Soviet Valves unfortunately are no longer a band. Quite a shame. Yet it's cool Vertex released these six songs for our listening pleasure despite the band's current status. I'd describe Soviet Valves' music as punk rock, but there are garage and post-punk leanings in their sound as well. There's something very English about this band. Literally! This record reminds me of the handful of Buzzcocks songs I love. Bands claiming the 1977 tradition are mostly catchy at best, boring at worst and nearly always weak extractions of the classics. Not the case with Soviet Valves. They do have that 77 vibe, but they take influence from far more corners making their songs sound refreshing and anything but retro.
Soviet Valves have songwriting chops like few bands do. Their dual guitar attack is solid and creates a full sound. I only realized the band does not include a bass player after seeing live footage while I'm always harsh on groups leaving the four string out. The guitar players deliver hook after hook. The drumming is relying heavily on fast hi-hat, snare combinations, which gives the songs a bit of a hardcore fundament. Last but not least, Milos vocals are impressive. He can deliver agressive snappy vocals over punk rock songs such as record opener 'Zip' and title track 'Death Trumps Romance', but carries a more sentimental song like 'Crossover Angst' flawlessly too. This guy can sing!
This 12” is a great record and looks great too. Six songs might sound a bit little, but with tunes of this quality it's a shortcoming easily forgiven. It's a shame these guys never reached a wider audience, because based on these six tracks they were definitely on par with some of their fellow country man that did get caught in the public punk eye. That's how it goes. I've been told the band's debut Ep is still available from SmartGuy. Make sure you pick up both that and this record up.

The Stabs - Dead Wood Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
Review up soon...









The Stabs - Dirt Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
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The Stickmen - Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
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The Stickmen - Man Made Stars Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
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Subtle Turnhips - Redhair with Some Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
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Sucked Dry - Dog Children Lp (Not Normal) (12,50 euro)
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Sunflare - Ghetto Blasts 12" (Bat Shit) (15 euro)
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Synthetic ID - Apertures 12" (Erste Theke Tonträger)
After a three song demo tape that was later released on vinyl by the excellent Cut the Cord that... Records, the Bay Area's very own Synthetic ID return with a 12” chock full of new songs. For those who enjoyed the band's previous material, these eight new tunes will certainly be no disappointment. 'Apertures' doesn't sound too far removed from the band's demo. It is a quality continuation of their recognizable brand of post punk. If anything, the musicianship has progressed to a higher level or better yet, the group fully realized their own sound.
There's still a great interaction going on between the driving basslines and the angular at times playful guitar work. The music sounds static which is emphasized by Nic's vocals that exist somewhere in between sung and spoken. However, there's a catchy side to Synthetic ID as well. After a few listens you'll notice their songs have taken root into your excuse for a brain or what's left of it. This record proves that the three tracks on their demo tape weren't lucky hits, but well crafted and thought out songs. These guys definitely got their songwriting down. They have a clear idea of the kind of music they want to play and execute it flawlessly. This record showcases a level of creativity and experimentation that seems rare amongst 'punk' bands as of late. All the more interesting to me is that these guys mostly come from a hardcore background, not the most imaginative of styles.
Filing Synthetic ID away as another band touting the post-punk label is selling them way too short, but if you're a fan of the style do make sure you don't miss out on these cats. 'Apertures' is a solid release up there with Rank Xerox's recent Lp – although I preferred their 7”. Both bands are doing the same kind of thing and they're both doing it very well. Now let's hope Synthetic ID will make a trip to Europe sometime soon as well. They were supposed to come over last year, but for reasons unknown to me the tour was cancelled. I'm sure this band is impressive live.

Unholy Thoughts - The Attic Lp (Even Worse)
The hardcore scene in Richmond, Virginia had the world in its firm grip medio last decade. No Way and Grave Mistake Records were labels on everybody's lips. They were releasing hardcore record after hardcore record. Youngsters all over the world were going ape shit over this new wave of bands. I was one of them. This scene made boys and girls start their own hardcore bands all over the western world. Although cool at first, it came to the point that every mediocre hardcore band from Shitville, got presented as the next coming of the Fix. So of course there was a backlash and people started hating. Wasted Time and Government Warning, the area's two most prolific bands, threw in the towel around that time and No Way Records fell into a deep, deep sleep. Everything went quiet on the Southern front.
That was until recently, because with Unholy Thoughts Richmond seems to be back on the hardcore map. This five piece shares members with some of the bands referred to above, but I'd rather not list them. Unholy Thoughts are not like any of them really. Although the band is definitely playing hardcore music and there's no denying they're taking cues from some of the 1980's greats, Unholy Thoughts is tougher and more rocking than your average No Way or Grave Mistake band. The bass playing in particular is pretty fucking heavy.
It shouldn't come as a surprise that this Lp is released on Even Worse Records, who have already served the world some rockin' 80's-inspired hardcore with both Funeral Shock and the Runnamucks. However, I personally prefer Unholy Thoughts – although in all fairness I never really gave Runnamucks a shot. To be frank I don't like 'rock'. I like my guitar solos filthy and short instead of wanky and long. What keeps Unholy Thoughts from falling flat is that the songs are still basic hardcore tunes at their core, built around simple straight forward riffs. There are parts where the guitar starts soloing, and those of you that get boners over guitar magic might get that tingly feeling in their pants during such little excursions. Myself, I like this record despite its rock leanings. The vocals and topics adressed are nothing out of the ordinary, but all the negativity contained in these thirteen songs seems sincere. Ricky's raspy voice sounds desperate as hell, and some of the one-liners that stick out on this record are pretty damn bleak. A band with lines like 'jaded by human contact/ nothing really to say' can't do wrong in my book. Thumbs up for coming up with a cool recognizable logo for your band that doesn't fall back on anything already around.

Valley Boys - Demo 12" (Cut the Cord that...) (12,50 euro)
This Toronto hardcore punk outfit's demo has been on heavy rotation on my Ipunk, but I only got my hands on copies of this 12” fairly recently. At first I thought this was Jonah Falco's new band, but it turns out he's not the one playing guitar on this record at all. Hell, he didn't even record or mix it! So Valley Boys are from Toronto, but have nothing to do with Jonah Falco. Their music, however, resembles Career Suicide quite a bit. Although Valley Boys are not as fast as Career Suicide nor is their singer as in your face as Martin – they do both have a raspy voice - both bands have a gift for writing anthemic hardcore punk songs with an obvious nod to early 1980's classics. It's nice Valley Boys change the tempo in between songs. What they sound like? You know the drill. Beefy clean guitar riffs with the occasional solo, simple at times even stupid drumming and snotty vocals. Yes, it's been done before, but I still like this kind of music a whole lot.
One of Valley Boys' main appeals is their vocalist. The vocals work well with the music. They're complimentary,  breathe the same vibe. The singer has a cool delivery. His lyrics focus on depression, but there's a lot of wit in between the lines making this record anything but a downer. Almost every song is about life being shit. How could I not love this record? All ten tracks here are simple and catchy as hell. My favourite songs include 'Pills' and 'Side Effects', which is basically the singer screaming out the side-effects of the medication he's using. I also love both 'Shooting Politicians' and 'Feeding Time' for their dumbass one-two drum beat. If you like catchy hardcore punk, you can hardly go wrong with this one. One minor complaint is that I would have liked the bass to be louder in the mix. The guy pulls of some cool lines, but they're barely audible. The record sounds a bit too trebley in my opinion, but what do I know? The songs are good and that's what counts. Apparently these guys just did a new four song Ep, which I really want to hear.

Walls - The Future is Wide Open Lp (De Graan Republiek)
This is Walls’ second full length. This Seattle band came from the ashes of Cold Sweat which was one of the best hardcore bands on this side of the millennium. That should stand for something. Because Cold Sweat’s singer Shaun moved to Texas shortly after the release of their second Lp ‘Blinded’, the band saw itself without a singer. They soon found a replacement in Alston, but decided to give the band another name now that they had a new front man. Walls was born. The band soon turned out to be an entirely different creature than Cold Sweat had been. Whereas Cold Sweat was a hardcore band – and what a hardcore band it was -, Walls incorporated a wider diversity of styles into their sound. A continuity between the two bands is the overload of ugly dissonant guitar work and the incredible negativity of the music in general. There is nothing but hate going on with both bands, but where Shaun seemed to focus his anger on the outside, Alston also has a soft spot for self loathing, but after putting himself down he still has plenty of rage left for the rest of the world. His lyrics are harsh and bleak, his delivery violent and frightening. Walls’ sound is brooding and the music is downright scary at times. The band is still heavy as hell like Cold Sweat was, but there is more room for slower and sludgy parts. This band is able to drain you of your will to live like few bands can. I remember two reviews of the first Walls Lp that hit the nail on the head. One read that every time the reviewer span the record, he felt like there was a monster staring at him from the dark corner of his room waiting for the right moment to leap onto him and eat him alive. The other read that the record never failed to make the reviewer feel miserable. Those two references are accurate and should give you a pretty clear idea of what you’re in for here. ‘The Future is Wide Open’ is a very powerful record by an amazing band bringing thirteen new unsettling songs to the listener’s ear. In my opinion this is their best release yet and I liked everything the band did before. Be warned though. This music is not for everybody. It suits me fine however. I can already see myself trembling and twitching on the couch at 3 am, because I drank too much coffee again and now I can’t sleep or read, because my attention span has evaporated. All that’s left to do is play this record, stare at the wall and let the music consume me. I already feel a headache coming up. It sure is good to have things like these to look forward to.

Yes, I'm Leaving - Mission Bulb Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
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Yes, I'm Leaving - Slow Release Lp (Homeless) (15 euro)
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Various Artists - Does It Hurt? Lp (Thought Crime)
Compilation records are often dismissed and not whithout reason. There are always bands on it that you really don't want to hear. Or the contributed songs are all shit, because the bands want to save their best tracks for their own releases. The list goes on, but none of these reasons apply here. Sotatila, Dumbstruck, Charlie, No Slogan, Ruidosa Inmundicia, Yellow Eyes and Narsaak all handed Berlin's Thought Crime Records a few unreleased tracks and the result is a pretty diverse hardcore compilation. There's literally something for everyone on this record. If you're into one or two of these bands, you should give "Does it Hurt?" a chance. Personally I really like the No Slogan and Sotatila songs. I had never heard Yellow Eyes before and they were a nice discovery.

Various Artists - Mallorca Punk Lp (1984) (12,50 euro)
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Various Artists - Tarantisimo Summit Volume Number Three Lp (Alx Nva, Johnny Lzr, Xunholm, Gary Wrong) (Bat Shit) (15 euro)
This is the third volume in the Tarantisimo Summit series. What the story here exactly is, I do not know. The first Tarantismo Summit – notice the lack of the extra 'i'- was released on Rampage Records in 2008. There's nothing I know about that label nor do I know why Bat Shit continued a series Rampage Records started. Maybe Rampage is Blaise's old label? Maybe it was just an inspiration? I never heard the first record in this series, but it's save to say that this format was born on Tarantismo Summit I.
These compilation records are basically line-ups of several one-man-projects playing otherworldly music. One-man-projects are not one-man-bands, mind you. Mr. Bat Shit is somehow in the know which individuals in bands have more material in them than their bands allow and spend their lonely nights strungout behind their home recording sets. This time around Gary Wrong and one of the guys in E.T. Habit contributed songs if I'm not mistaken. The line-up is actually shrouded in mystery. Gary Wrong is the only one mentioned on the sleeve that I know of. The other artists have strange names such as ALX NVA, Johnny LZR and Xunholm. I'm not making this stuff up. Some research traces these names back to prominent bands in music's margins today. Curious? Do some research yourself.
These tracks are not conventional rock music. There's a lot of use of electronics, drum computers and synthesizers going on. Samples. Vocals are sparse and when they're present they never really draw attention. The music isn't noise though. It's not scarred by feedback nor is it vicious in any way. I'd almost call it minimal ambient, but it's a bit too disturbing for that. Very weird stuff for sure and to be honest not something I'd be listening to had I not bought this record out of curiosity. Does that mean this record isn't any good? Hell no! Take it as a sign of my narrow mindedness instead. I find this record perfect for late night reading. It would work as a soundtrack underneath a cheap science fiction movie too. The artwork fittingly taps into otherwordliness and looks great. I always love Ilth's stuff. I hope his band will do another record sometime or are they done for?

Various Artist - Welcome to 2013 Lp (Not Normal) (15 euro)
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