Sluggo Sluggo LP

Man, I was so delighted to see this one pop up on my assignments list—I had no idea the SLUGGO stuff had been reissued! Hailing from Cincinnati, SLUGGO were one of the countless lower-rung HC bands that emerged from every nook and cranny in the USA from 1982–1984. Their Contradiction 7″ from 1984 has been one of my personal favourites in the “inessential in the grand scheme, but fucking awesome regardless” subset of American hardcore releases for quite some time. A straightedge band, many accuse(d) SLUGGO of being little more than a MINOR THREAT clone and, while they certainly wore their influences on their sleeves, I feel that calling the band a wholesale rip-off does these tunes a massive disservice because they really stand on their own merits. In addition to the aforementioned Contradiction EP, this self-titled reissue also features the fruits of a different 1984 recording session on its B-side, with most of the material being previously unreleased in an official capacity—it all rips! After this, they went in a more MOTÖRHEAD-influenced metalpunk direction that, if you can track it down, also rips. This LP comes highly recommended to any fellow connoisseurs of the classics and any fans of early straightedge bands like MINOR THREAT, STALAG 13, AMERICA’S HARDCORE, etc.

Sluggo Contradiction EP

A nifty new thrash band from the Midwest. Their most noticeable characteristic is a vocal style that sounds alternately like the CIRCLE JERKS (“Figure It Out”), 7 SECONDS (“Erase the Thought”), or MINOR THREAT (“Too Bad”). The music is sloppy but exuberant, the production is suitably primitive, and the themes sometimes make you stop and reflect (especially in the title cut and “Up and Over”). Recommended.