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MRR Radio #1587 • 12/10/17

This week Matt pulls some rarities out of the vault to make the scums and punks drool. Intro song: STENGTE DØRER ...

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MRR Radio #1586 • 12/3/17

On this week's MRR Radio, Rob goes ballistic for late '70s and early '80s Bloodstains punk rock from around the ...

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Maximum Rocknroll #416 • Jan 2018

Another new year, another exciting issue of Maximum Rocknroll! MRR #416, our January 2018 issue, begins with a sad note as we ...

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"Who gives a fuck?"

MRR Radio #1585 • 11/26/17

“[...] Elvis gives them a short speech about the death pangs that humanity must go through in order to reach ...

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MRR Radio #1584 • 11/19/17

Another fuct up Rotten Ron and Horrrible Halitosis Punker Power Hour. Intro song: DRUGCHARGE - Husk Rotten Ron fucks it up so you ...

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Website exclusive: 2010 Top Ten from Daniel of Sorry State Records

February 10th, 2011 by

Alright, folx, here’s another web-only, bonus year-end top ten for 2010 (as seen in the current issue of MRR magazine). This time, from guest writer Daniel of Sorry State Records

Out of seemliness I’ve excluded records I put out on my label from this list, but rest assured DOUBLE NEGATIVE’s Daydreamnation and LIBYANS’ A Common Place would be at the top of my list, were I more inclined to self-promotion. Actually, now I’m realizing that these are at the top of my list am I am self-promoting, but I’m just going to go for it. Onto the goods…

VAASKA – Ruido Hasta la Muerte LP (540) Vaaska’s new LP is, without a doubt, the hardcore record of the year. I’ve loved past releases by the circle of people/bands in Texas from which this originates (stuff like Sacred Shock and Deskonocidos, if I remember correctly), but never has it all come together so beautifully as it does on this LP. It sort of reminds me of Articles of Faith’s Give Thanks LP if it was heavily informed by Discharge-inspired punk, and while the combination would probably be awkward in anyone else’s hands it’s just brilliant here.

PROTEX – Strange Obsessions LP (Sing Sing) I feel weird putting a reissue in my year-end list, but I listened to Strange Obsessions so many times in 2010 that it would feel weirder not putting it here. I’ve always loved Protex’s singles and I was elated to hear that an unreleased LP had been uncovered, but I never could have imagined that the LP would be even better. While their classic “Don’t Ring Me Up” is so straightforward and poppy that it sounds like a long-lost Buddy Holly tune, the raw production on this 12″ means the melodies are buried just a tiny bit deeper, making it all the more gratifying when they inevitably bury themselves in your head.

NIGHT BIRDS – demo, Killer Waves, s/t, and Midnight Movies EPs (Art of the Underground/Grave Mistake/No Way) Yeah, these are four different releases, but they’re all of a piece and I generally listen to them together in one big iTunes playlist anyway, so I think they deserve to be considered together. When I first heard Night Birds my reaction was, “Wow, this band sounds a lot like the Authorities,” but the more I listen to them the more I find them totally original. Sure, you can hear the reference points in surf punk, early ’80s hardcore, and even ’90s pop-punk, but Night Birds weave them all together beautifully. Plus, the hooks on “Killer Waves” and “Midnight Movies” are undeniable!

Night Birds (photo by Eric Rex)

EDDY CURRENT SUPPRESSION RING – Rush to Relax LP (Goner) When a longtime favorite releases something new there’s always a period of acclimatization, and the new Eddy Current album was no different. At first I gravitated toward the spiky, near-hardcore of “Walked into a Corner,” then I got fascinated by the smart-dumb lyrics of “Gentlemen” and “I Can Be a Jerk.” Nowadays “Second Guessing” is my jam, but this is a record where I don’t skip a track. Sometimes I even listen to the 30 minutes of ocean sounds at the end…

KRIEGSHÖG – War for Peace 12″ (La Vida Es Un Mus) This is a record I almost had trouble processing at first because the anticipation and hype surrounding it were, at times, so intense as to affect the way that I heard the music. After a few listens, though, I realized that there’s no denying the beastliness of this LP… I love the burly as fuck bass sound, and if there was a catchier hardcore riff than the one in “Burn” written in the year 2010 then I did not hear it. The packaging on this was also a thing of beauty, particularly if you happened to be sitting by your computer during the 12 or so hours when you could buy the limited edition red vinyl with obi strip.

CRAZY SPIRIT – demo/EP (Toxic State) Crazy Spirit played a house show in Raleigh this past summer and my car broke down on the way there… My blood still boils every time I think of this band playing 30 miles away while I sat in a gas station parking lot trying to figure out how to put in a new battery. Like Kriegshög, Crazy Spirit offers a full aesthetic experience that you’re not likely to get from a simple MP3 download… you need to see those hand-screened sleeves on the 7″ and the crazy artwork on the tape, and you probably need to actually wear one of their weird-ass, Karate Kid-looking t-shirts to get the full effect. I also must say that I like this band’s demo a bit more than their 7″, as the sound collage stuff (which maybe they couldn’t put on the vinyl for copyright reasons?) and weird acoustic number really add to the sense of confrontational weirdness. Hopefully, they continue to move off the deep end on future releases.

Merchandise LP

MERCHANDISE – (Strange Songs) in the Dark LP (Drugged Conscience) This one came out of left field for me… I absolutely love bands like Psychedelic Furs, the Cure, Gary Numan, etc. (and, honestly, I probably listen to these bands way more than any current hardcore band), though it never even occurred to me that a new band could provide me with a fresh update on that style. Well, Merchandise went and did it, taking the big hooks of early ’80s new wave, adding in broad swaths of noise and feedback and a dash of the “mysterious guy HC” aesthetic. This LP would probably make it onto this list for “Worthless Apology” alone, and the fact that the other songs are nearly as good just clinches its place.

INSUBORDINATES – LP (Cowabunga) Way back in 2007 Insubordinates put out a demo proving that they could write extremely capable neo-Californian skate punk, but aside from a teasingly short 2-song single they remained quiet for the next 3+ years. When this magnum opus finally dropped I was aghast at its ambition. You can almost hear the band reworking and refining this set of songs to make sure that each song is its own, singular universe. Most bands eventually find a “sound” with which they’re comfortable and, at best, push themselves to produce variations on that theme, but the songs on this LP barely belong in the same genre together, much less on the same record. Further, I love how it’s the weird, abrasive parts of the band’s sound (like Brett’s vocals and the skronk sax) that tie the sound together and give them consistency… The hooks are fleeting moments of beauty, but the ugliness is here to stay.

White Lung LP

WHITE LUNG – It’s the Evil LP (Deranged) As with the Merchandise record, White Lung play a style of jerky, noodly post-punk that I barely ever listen to (aside from obvious classics like Drive Like Jehu), but this band was so undeniably powerful live that I had to get their records. While the rhythm section kept me transfixed live, it’s the guitar playing that keeps me coming back to this record again and again… it’s just so inventive and melodic in a completely non-obvious way. I’m hardly a proponent of technical virtuosity for its own sake, but I really admire people that can think outside of the box and do something with a song that no one else would think of doing, and this LP provides moment after moment like that.

ROUGH KIDS – “Into the ’00s/So Sophisticated” 7″ (Rough) THE LOVE TRIANGLE – Splendid Living EP (Dire) TOTAL CONTROL – Paranoid Video EP (Smart Guy)
OK, I know this is cheating, but I’m going to justify putting three singles in my #10 position because they each had one song that I could not get out of my head for a huge chunk of 2010. Try starting your next mix tape with Rough Kids’ “So Sophisticated,” followed by the Love Triangle’s “Splendid Living”, into Total Control’s “Paranoid Video.” You’re going to have do some real work to sustain that level of quality and catchiness on the fourth track… or you can just pull the ol’ mix tape trick of changing gears completely and put a song from John Cale’s Paris 1919 next… At any rate, if you are a fan of all that is good and catchy in punk, you are going to need these three songs.

Keep On Ooglin’: Nate Doyle

February 9th, 2011 by

Here’s the latest in our series on punk comics by Janelle Blarg. And don’t forget to check out the Comics Issue of MRR magazine, still available in our back issues.

Nate Doyle says that he’s trapped in “a weird purgatory where my art isn’t ‘punk enough’ for punks and ‘too punk’ for comics people.” I’m here to tell you not to be a chump. Nate’s a young dude whose art is progressing at a rapid rate and will soon pass you by. I asked him a couple of questions via email.

How did you get into drawing comics?

I kind of got into drawing comics as a kid. I really liked comics straight from Japan, where I had no idea what anyone was saying but would try and figure out the story anyways. So I would start making mini-comics right onto the folder paper, pamphlet style, and give up about half way through not knowing where the story was going to go, and blow the world up or something. But once I got into high school and started reading Optic Nerve and Nate Powell’s comics I started to think more and make little story doodles and quick comics.

You went to comic-drawing school. What was that like? Do you consider it money well spent?

I went to the School of Visual Arts for cartooning, yeah. That was an interesting experience… The exposure I got to underground, foreign and superhero comics was amazing. I learned so much from teachers just bringing in weirdo artists that I was super stoked on, or having teachers that were weirdo artists themselves who taught me a lot about how to handle or approach comics as a medium and some really helpful techniques. Aside from the school sort of treating the cartooning program as a joke I think it was somewhat well spent. Sometimes I wish I hadn’t gone to school for comics and that I fall into this weird wave of “comics brats” or being seen as something weird like that because I’m a younger artist, but I don’t really feel like I have that kind of comic school aesthetic to my work, which I’m kind of hoping others see as the case, hahah.

Who are some artists you’re inspired by?

Julie Doucet, Bobby Madness, Jaime Hernandez, Blutch, Edie Fake, Ken Dahl, John Porcellino, Vanessa Davis, and Dan Clowes…

Check out Nate’s website at ndcrookedteeth.blogspot.com. He also plays in the band NOMOS.

Wow, what a show! Mundo Muerto/
Desperate Hours/Ratface/Dopecharge
Kimo’s, SF, 1/29/11

February 8th, 2011 by

Wow, what a show! is brought to you this week by Clint Baechle of hella bands and the Boca de Fuma blog, with photos by Jehn Cincinnasti. If you take photos and like to write about punk shows (or if you and a friend wanna team up to do this) drop us a line at with a sample review and pics, and maybe you too can be a MRR shitblogger!

For all the times in my life I’ve been told I smell like a goddamn brewery, there are few of them when the accusation could really be considered correct, and tonight was one such time. As soon as I got out of work, I wandered down the road to Speakeasy Brewery’s Friday night open house. My buddy works there and hooks me up with brews, and I uncomfortably stood there drinking beer after beer and munching popcorn in a warehouse facility brimming with with self righteous young professionals, freshly scrubbed and tweezed, and without a doubt twittering about what a “fucking wild night” they are having. But I digress. My point here is actually that there is nothing better to prepare one’s mind and body for a long night of anarcho-crust than a few (or quite a few) bitter beers. I could have used a few more myself, to be honest, but it was time to go, and I took the 19 Polk Family Adventure Bus along almost it’s entire circuitous route, from Hunter’s Point to the venerable intersection of Polk and Pine streets, home to tonight’s festivities. By now my stomach was rumbling, and I figured I’d better give it some kind of cushion for the battery that was to come. And so it came to be that I missed the opening band, the Neighborhood Brats (a great band by the way) because I was chowing Chinese food and accidentally catapulting spoons across the restaurant with my stupid elbows, agitating the staff who were still recovering from the antics of a hostile “chew and screw” customer.

Ratface (photo by Jehn Cincinnasti)

I ascended the golden staircase into Kimo’s “Penthouse Lounge” just in time to catch MUNDO MUERTO from L.A. I’d never seen them before, and due to their association with the Silenzio Statico posse, I was expecting something a bit more rawponk. Instead it was something tight, (barely) controlled, brimming with hardcore anger and attitude. The instruments were individually distinguishable, not a hot mess of chaos, and the songs went from fast rippers into bouncy mid tempo parts. Awesome.

Considering how easy it actually is to pack a walk-in closet the size of Kimo’s, I’ve seen relatively few packed shows here. This one wasn’t the biggest, but it was pretty close, and things were starting to get tight by the third band, but not too tight to easily get up to the bar and get another few beers, thank god.I had to enrich my punk state of mind.

DESPERATE HOURS is a band I’ve seen many times before, so I knew what to expect. The trio of Isla Vista, filthy, beach-crust bums ripped through a succinct and serious set of blown out, Japanese worshiping, crusty d-beat. Chris and Chuck made plenty of snarling faces in our direction, and Denver stomped along, holding it together with wild bass lines. It seemed like moldy black denim and phlegm was everywhere. If that was actually the case, then the problem only increased during the set of Pittsburgh, PA’s Ratface.

Desperate Hours (photo by Jehn Cincinnasti)

RATFACE seems to have several things to its advantage in the midst of the massive d-crust noise punk barrage we’ve been experiencing lately. One of these things is a healthy sense of (self deprecating when necessarily) humor. It has nothing to do with the show review but check out the “Cider Song” intro to their half of the Desperate Hours split tape. Hilarious! Rather the the bombed out mass grave shattered corpse ridden battlefield in which most of their contemporaries dwell, Ratface is perfectly at home falling down cider-drunk in gutter with yer mates and laughing it off.

Ratface’s next advantage is an acknowledgment of pre-Discharge and Anti-Cimex punk music, as evidenced by their covers (yeah, I don’t really think punk bands should do covers; yeah, I went crazy as fuck when they played “Religious Wars,” because that’s the only thing appropriate to do, plus I love that song) and the stylistic variables in their own songs. Yeah, they’re basically d-beat still, but they sound less diluted than most of the shit out there these days, with more tasty ingredients stewed into the studded vest, mucous, cum, blood, spit and filth stew that they’re cooking up for us to all enjoy.

Ratface (photo by Jehn Cincinnasti)

Ratface’s third advantage is their guitar player, Jimmy, who was apparently in some other band that people really liked. He takes take a uniquely workmanlike approach (must be that Midwestern blood) to playing noisy-ass guitar, almost gracefully(?!) piling on the extra squeals, feedback, wah-wahs and rudimentary solos. Right the fuck on.

After that I drank more beer.

I wish someone had told me beforehand that this was to be the final DOPECHARGE show, I would have paid closer attention, maybe tried to break out some teeth or at least spill a beer on someone during their set, but I thought that I would always get another chance to see them, to let them be the soundtrack to another wasted night in San Francisco City, in front of too many kids who were too drunk in a too small bar in a not quite shitty enough neighborhood. It’s a band that I will probably remember more for their attitude than their wild d-beat bashings, more for the nihilistic party atmosphere that their presence seems to suggest. Oh well, I wonder what they’ll do next.

After that I drank a lot more beer.

All in all this was a very satisfying punks spending loud night — it included bus rides, wastedness, alleyway drinking, public urination, denim, leather, and lots people having a good time. And I don’t want to jinx it by talking about it, but damn, there are not only so many good bands coming through right now, but enough venues in San Francisco and the East Bay to host them, and enough drunken retards to go to all the shows, mosh it up, and maybe even take home a nice t-shirt with a skull on it. Ride the wave, boss.

Monday Photo Blog: Parasytic

February 7th, 2011 by

Dave Zukauskas sent a batch of photos in a little while ago of PARASYTIC (from Virginia) playing the Whitney House in Hartford, CT, back in early November. Thanks Dave! Dig it:

Parasytic @ Whitney House, Hartford, CT 9 November 2010 (photo by Brushback)

Parasytic @ Whitney House, Hartford, CT, 9 November 2010 (photo by Brushback)

Parasytic @ Whitney House, Hartford, CT 9 November 2010 (photo by Brushback)

Parasytic @ Whitney House, Hartford, CT, 9 November 2010 (photo by Brushback)

Parasytic @ Whitney House, Hartford, CT 9 November 2010 (photo by Brushback)

Parasytic @ Whitney House, Hartford, CT, 9 November 2010 (photo by Brushback)

If you shoot shows and have photos you want to submit for the MRR Blog, send to: Be sure to put “MRR Photo Blog” in the subject. Include your name, the band, where and when it was shot. Just send your best photos – edit tightly. Three to five photos is plenty. We like to exercise a little quality control here…not everything sent in will be posted. Please size your photos so they are 600 pixels (72 dpi) at the longest side.

MRR website exclusive: 2010 Year-End Top Ten from Dougie!

February 7th, 2011 by

From our record reviewer Sean Dougan, here’s the first in a series of 2010 year-end top ten lists that didn’t fit into the latest issue of MRR. Enjoy!

RED DONS – Fake Meets Failure LP (Deranged)
The second full-length from these soggy bottom dwellers from up in the land of bobble hats and half masked pants. Stripping it down to a more dark and minimal sound whilst maintaining those ever-important hooks. Get on board.

More herky-jerky and less driving than the previous two, but even a good ECSR record is still amazing.

THE POTENTIAL JOHNS – “Can I Really/Past Due” 7″ (Dirtnap)
Jeff from the MARKED MEN doing his all by himself project. Sounding like the MARKED MEN on downers with a hint of shoegaze but still firmly holding on to that ever important melody that makes Jeff and his buddies the envy of me eye.

AUTISTIC YOUTH – Idle Minds LP (Dirtnap)
More gloom from Portland, done with a wink and a nod to the WIPERS whilst taking in some early LA drive and punch. An addictive record that grows and grows with every listen.

THE BROKEDOWNS – Species Bender (Red Scare)
ROCKET FROM THE CRYPT mixing it up with DILLINGER FOUR whilst having a big boy wrestle with NEGATIVE APPROACH. Weirder things have happened. When I’m feeling down this picks me right up, and I don’t even have to snort it. Roll on, Chicago.

MIND SPIDERS – Worlds Destroyed EP (Dirtnap)
Mark Ryan from the MARKED MEN doing his own thing and doing it so well. It’s got that MARKED MEN X-factor whilst adding a nice touch of garage and indie pop.

TERROR – Keepers of the Faith LP (Reaper)
Back to the brutal sound of their first two LPs. Stomping, karate-kick infused hardcore that could instigate a fight at Buddhist retreat.

AIRFIX KITS – Flex Time EP (Deranged) Playing Both Sides EP (Dirtnap)
One record set the world alight with its sexist rants, the other set the dance floor on fire with its post-punk grooves. The JAM meets GANG OF FOUR meets TV PERSONALITIES.

THE MARKED MEN – “On/Other Side” 7″ (540)
I really don’t think that my favorite punk band off all time could write a bad tune. Dare you to.

J.C. SATAN – Sick of Love LP (Slovenly)
Tight pants Europeans mixing some TY SEGALL with the OH SEES, and I must say I was very impressed.

Airfix Kits (photo by icki)

Honorable mentions: RED RED RED – New Action LP, WHITE NOISE SOUND – s/t LP, CHEAP TIME – Fantastic Explanations LP, SKIN LIKE IRON – Descent Into the Light LP, VAASKA – Ruido Hasta la Muerte LP, TOTAL CONTROL – “Paranoid Video/Real Estate” 7″, DESKONOCIDOS – En la Oscuridad LP, THE ESTRANGED – The Subliminal Man LP