MRR #27 • August 1985

A State of Mind What’s the Difference? Animal/Humyn Exploitation EP

Set to folk music anarchist punk, or weird post-punk, we’re assaulted with pleas, information, and harangues about the abuses to both the human species and animalkind. Can’t say I’m attracted to the tunes but those who are adventurous musically or inquisitive/passionate about the subject matter will be rewarded.

Antietam Antietam LP

Definitely the punk equivalent of middle period JEFFERSON AIRPLANE. The “punk” side comes from the PATTI SMITH-ish vocalist, though both sides she and the male vocalist hit higher notes. Musically, it’s a jazzy/folky rockish band with tough, punkish power (at times).

Antiseen Drastic EP

This band unveils a new variety of hardcore—”destructo rock”—which sounds for all the world like gruff and grungy mid-tempo thrash. ANTISEEN can’t boast great songwriting skills, but I still enjoyed the irrepressible aggro and rebelliousness of their output. A pretty good release.

Äpärät Häiriköt Tulee EP

More tuneful than most Finnish thrash, this band employs melody, and clean production and playing; because of this, there’s more of a British feel to this six-song release. But by no means is this a sterile, plodding record; quite the contrary, it’s pretty strong medium-paced thrash and good listening.

Bad Checks Graveyard Tramp 12″

A fine slab of sludge rock from Durham, North Carolina. This music plants itself firmly in between the trashiness of the GUN CLUB and the garage sound of 100 FLOWERS. Three members dress in leather and one in paisley, and that’s pretty much the sound—3/4 punk and 1/4 psychedelic.

Camper Van Beethoven Camper Van Beethoven cassette

This unlikely effort incorporates elements of garage pop and ska, combined with a satirical punk attitude; the result is subtly entertaining. While CVB could increase their energy level a bit, the band’s intelligence and offbeat humor come through in tracks like “Lassie” and “Take the Skinheads Bowling.” Pleasant.

Corrosion of Conformity Animosity LP

Smack! Wallop!…Rough punches of raw lightning-fast metallic energy as this new C.O.C. broadens their audience range. Now a three-piece with bassist Mike Dean coughing out the vocals, the excitement never stops while Woody grinds out the gritty chords and Reed pounding that skin-kit. Might seem a bit different, but no band keeps it abrasive like C.O.C.

Crime and the City Solution The Dangling Man EP

An interesting record from Mute, and definitely BIRTHDAY PARTY influenced. Did I say “influenced”? Why, it’s…Rowland Howard on guitar, Mick Harvey on drums, and Simon Bonny singing. There are some great tunes here: “Shaking Chill” is hopping and the rest grind on with apocalyptic moments characteristic of the style.

Crude SS Who’ll Survive EP

Yeeeoowzza! This disc is a flailing sonic eruption! Fast teeth-gritting grinds of raw abrasive combustion with raunchy vocals that roar out in command. Sweden’s CRUDE SS storms six numbers so chaotic with a powerful raging beat that the power is the closest thing to actual destruction. One hot Swedish platter!

Cryptic Slaughter Life in Grave cassette

Zooming speedcore mayhem with wild metallic bites and machine-gun drumming. Rough, growling vocals float over this. CRYPTIC SLAUGHTER mixes the textures of DRI, SLAYER, CFA, and the POSSESSED to bring forth one monster of rapid-fire acceleration for this young band. Wild and intense.

Cult Maniax Where Do We All Go 12″

Clean live recording of the CULT MANIAX at their finest. Powerful Britpunk with crisp vocals in a chanting form. If you haven’t heard them before, they’re not thrash, just tight melodic aggression. But this live recording is too much; great sound.

Cyrnai Charred Blossoms 12″

The “music” herein definitely falls without our normal range of coverage, but as its done by a person (playing all instruments, singing, artwork) involved in the scene who also has an ad in this issue, I thought I’d take a stab: surrealistic experimental, overdubbed, mellow weirdness, special effects, poetic print and lyrics—outside.

D.I. Ancient Artifacts LP

The ADOLESCENTS are often used as a milestone in describing the SoCal thrash sound, and this band with two ex-members of the ADOLESCENTS is the heir-apparent. They pump out nine tunes fast and slow, which epitomize the H.B. sound: clean production, melodic thrash, surf HC guitar, and nasal vocals. Some real classics here.

Happy Toons / Dead Fink Rest in Pieces split EP

Two defunct Chicago-area bands share the honors on this split EP. DEAD FINK produces raw but hook-filled punkers of which “Home in a Grave” is particularly outstanding; HAPPY TOONS alternate between a careening thrash assault and some weird metal-tinged structures, but they’re crude enough to get away with it. A surprisingly strong release from two relatively unknown outfits.

Detox Detox LP

Sounds like a less thrashy and slightly more serious VANDALS. There’s lots of catchy punk songs with lots of humor or satire, plenty of melody, tight playing, and even tinges of country. Good but not startling.

Discharge Ignorance / No Compromise 7″

The A-side is a pretty catchy, almost MOTÖRHEAD-type rockin’ metalish number with excellent lyrics. The flip is too plodding for my tastes, but again with good lyrics. While I don’t enjoy this brand of DISCHARGE as much as their earlier incarnation, at least the integrity of the thoughts is maintained.

Disgust Trash Back!! cassette

Aaagh! It’s t-h-r-a-s-h, not t-r-a-s-h! Okay, now that that’s clear, onto the music. Most of the songs here are really well recorded, though there’s a few live ones with a slightly tinny sound. But all the songs shred—very powerful thrash!

DNI Wir Sind Lebendig EP

Upbeat German punkers with a great sense of humor. They sing about the walking dead like it was an outtake from a Disney film. Lots of sing-along-style tunes with quick step guitars. Should appeal to MISFITS fans.

Dr. Know Burn EP

Eerie, in the DR. KNOW tradition, but definitely not “death rock” by a long shot. On this 7″, the band progresses where their 12 left off; the lyrics are polished up and the guitar solos are at a minimum. All five cuts are catchy, but lack the power I hoped for. Damn good…yep, damn good.

Electric Peace Rest in Peace 12″

This release is their third, and continues along in the advanced stages of psychedelic damage. Combining psychedelia, progressive rock, metal, ’60s punk, and bad singing, this outfit is adventurous to say the least. The guitarist is the strong point, whipping out some occasionally gnarly runs (Á  la ’69), but the singing makes me take the needle off.

Eugene Chadbourne The President, He is Insane LP

Unlike his former band SHOCKABILLY, Chadbourne’s solo efforts steer away from the head-first fuzzed-out psychedelic trips and goes for more personal (and political) subjects. There are some incredible lyrics here about nationalism, pornography, and criminals in coats and ties all delivered in a folky, sometimes spastic sound that really connects.

Generic Join the Conspiracy cassette

Wall-to-wall, highly produced, powerfully delivered, and tightly played stop-and-go thrash. That sound generic enough? Nonetheless, these guys are good, do feature almost post-punk guitar work at times plus the tape comes with mini-zine Rancid Humanity.

Government Issue The Fun Just Never Ends LP

With more of a recognizable “D.C.” sound and a lot less metalish or rockish material than their previous release, this album rates highly with me. Although it’s supposedly a “live” recording, you’d never know it by the excellent sound quality, with all the detail there, cumulatively adding up to one powerful piece of vinyl.

Greg Sage Straight Ahead LP

This Portland talent and brain of the WIPERS has filled this LP with ballads. Tough lyrics, as is his trademark, as well as strummin’ that ol’ geetar. I’ve always been one of Greg’s biggest fans and when I’m sad and need consolation, this will be on the turntable. I wouldn’t live without it.

Group of Individuals Destroyer of Fun / The Sellout 7″

The A-side “Destroyers of Fun,” is excellent powerful older-style punk rock with smart lyrics. The flip is not DC’s G.I., and features “The Sellout,” a more uptempo punk tune that’s also quite intelligent lyrically. I suspect some of the same people are involved in both projects. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Happy World Happy World LP

Wonderful spaz punk rock from the boonies of Colorado. They have a nice style of going from a weird instrumental with raspy guitar sounds into a goofy, ragged tune about something like a worm or something. Nice cover, too.

Herbärds Eu! Se Bois LP

Thrashin’ Oi sounds from Germany. These tuneful tunes are delivered competently and powerfully, although there is definitely an amateurish garage quality to the playing, too. Can’t say anything about the lyrics, but I can say they’re definitely into their boots and rolled-up jeans.

Honor Role Judgement Day / Anonymous Cave 7″

Their first records will stay dear in my memory, but the new HONOR ROLE sound is much stronger and improved. Excellent production matched up with stuttering rhythms and great rough vocals make this a top-notch effort.

Hungry for What …And the War Goes On LP

HUNGRY FOR WHAT’s approach is molded by ’77 punk, but a certain sleekness of production imparts a contemporary feel to their songs. There’s some good music here; still, H.F.W. see-saw between moments of power and a sedate professionalism, with the latter winning out in most cases. A strong, yet unmoving release.

Hype Life is Hard… Then You Die! LP

Smoking speedcore attack from Canada. Never expected this. Fast punching rhythms with metallic leads and mayhemic chord changes. Good vocals and drum smashing prove this LP to be one of the classic records that you can always pull out and play. First S.N.F.U., then DIRECT ACTION, and now HYPE—the Canadian assault is upon us!

JFA Live 1984 Tour LP

JFA have documented their live performing talents with mixed success on this album. The instrumental numbers (and there are a ton of them here) have both energy and clarity, though the vocal tunes tend to show the fair-to-middling quality of the recording. For JFA fans only.

Jonee Jonee Blár Azzurro 7″

An eerie, sullen filled slice of blue from Iceland with opposing male and female vocals. Very JOY DIVISION-ish in its attempt at a gloom-laden melody. Nice packaging as are all EPs through Diavlery Productions. Interesting and moody.

Le Crap Ip 12″

Denmark’s LE CRAP wanders through bewildering territory, indeed. While the guitar sound is hard and driving, the songs on this EP work with experimental song structures and off-beat percussion, with some unpleasant results. Not unlike France’s HUMAN BEINGS.

Lounge Lizards Live 79/81 cassette

I hate jazz even more than metal (at least heavy metal is humorous in a pitiable kind of way). That’s why I was surprised to enjoy (moderately) this cassette of finely recorded live cuts from the LOUNGE LIZARDS’ repertoire. Though these songs have their own robust energy, this is not punk.

Madhouse Repulsion 12″

Sounds like the bad side of UXA. Lots of rock instrumentation with an okay, but too “tryin’-to-be-Siouxsie” singer. Dog likes it, though (says she’s better than Penelope), but Spinali says she’s off-key (and he normally likes any band with a female singer, regardless of quality).

Marginal Man Double Image LP

Maybe a tad slower than their debut album, this release retains MARGINAL MAN’s melodic approach to punk without losing too much of an edge. The vocals continue to snarl despite the melodic guitar and almost rock-structured songs. Controlled but not wimpy.

MG-15 Derecho a la Vida EP

Growling guitar havoc highlights this four-song Spanish EP with a sound similar to OLHO SECO. Power chords laced with chaotic-paced grinding makes for an interesting effect. Lyrics are translated on the inner sleeve, but the vocals are harsh with a rough edge that delivers the same bite as the guitar. A good dose to crank it up for raw vibrations.

Mighty Sphincter Ghost Walking Double EP

I really didn’t expect this from MIGHTY SPHINCTER, but I just know this will grow on me. Jumping, jolting, pain, torture, torment… gothic like JOY DIVISION, jerky like MINUTEMEN, moaning like…hmmm, SCRATCH ACID? Good God, I think it’s saintly…

Nerorgasmo Nerorgasmo EP

Three of the four songs are mid- to slow-tempo hardcore, at times verging on FLIPPERISH drones. The remaining song is a thrasher, and all the tunes are powerful and gnarly. Good production, good record.

No Trend A Dozen Dead Roses LP

NO TREND is much tamer than they used to be; their wildness has been traded in for precision and style. LYDIA LUNCH has added some vocals here that add to their style. Moodiness, melody, and tradition make this LP a good soundtrack but not as gripping as before. Some good tracks make this worth getting—but it’s not my favorite.

O.X. Pow PolÁ­ticos 12″

Those expecting the charging thrash of their debut EP will be in for a shock. O.X. POW’s style has degenerated into a new wave pop reminiscent of a spare U2, or perhaps AIRSTRIP 1 without the catchy material. And while political pop is OK in my book, there’s no real songwriting skill in evidence here. Too bad.

Oh’ Dev 84/85 Mania cassette

Industrial post-punk hardcore? Whatever it is, it’s done with gusto and power rare for most post-punk bands. Also rare is the band’s imagination. Sort of like SONIC YOUTH meets the BUTTHOLES meets some nightmare you had after eating meat and taking acid for the first time in ten years (Ray Farrell, take note). Not noise!

Perdition How to Teach Your Budgie to Talk LP

Well done punk in a more British style. There’s mostly fast punk (as opposed to thrash), with a couple of slower tunes to break the tempo. I can’t say I jumped up and down listening to this record, but fans of the Britpunk genre will be able to pogo.

Rabatz Schockiert EP

Sadly, the wall-of-mud production detracts from this powerful band. Their songs have an obvious energy to them, which kicks along songs like “Helden” with its skittering guitar parts. All in all, not too shabby, but it would be really nice to hear them.

Really Red Rest in Pain LP

The parting shot from one of the great punk experimenting bands. REALLY RED combined awesome power with intelligence (lyrically and musically) to produce both pop/punk and experimental punk of the highest calibre. This record displays both, in a mix of live and studio tracks. Great cover of RED CRAYOLA’s “War Sucks.” We’ll miss em.

Rites of Spring Rites of Spring LP

One of D.C.’s most touted younger bands comes across with a melodic punk style that combines older-style punk and rock into a powerful force. With ringing guitars, chunky rhythms, and ruff vocals, they come across not unlike area-mates SCREAM in toughs but pop appeal.

Roach Egg Invasion Huevos Roacheros: Live From Woody’s Back Door Tavern LP

This live album from Kansas’ ROACH EGGS is just what one might expect from a garage band out of the Midwest with a goofy name like that. It’s absurdly basic and sort of inept in the “punk rock” sense of the term, and the lyrics are either stupid or funny depending on one’s taste. The big problem here is the absence of guitar distortion and a powerful recording, but then Woody’s Back Door Tavern probably doesn’t have a world-class sound system.

S.A.S. Suave and Sophisticated? EP

Yeeouwh! This is an absolutely amazing British thrash band. SPEAK AGAINST SOCIETY manages to generate an incredible wall of guitar power and attains a level of intensity rarely heard these days from that “sceptered isle.” No doubt they’ll be panned in the British music weeklies, the surest sign of greatness. “We Don’t Need It” makes your hair stand up!

S.F.N. The First Thing I Ever Did Was Cry cassette

S.F.N. “Stands For Nothing,” but their music is definitely a cut above. Very tight playing and excellent production bring out some of the subtleties in their complex power-thrash approach. Bits of jazz thrown in here and there break the uniformity, as do the intelligent lyrics. Lotsa songs.

Sacred Denial Life’s Been Getting to Me LP

The thrash on this record contains some gripping instrumental changes of pace, and demonstrates the rudiments of songwriting finesse. A brace of hard-driving HC numbers, a nifty cover of WAR’s “Why Can’t We Be Friends,” and some concise, dynamic production values make this one well worth getting. Some great potential here.

Scoundrels Ufreet Toe Moef cassette

Most Northern European bands don’t put much emphasis on melody, it seems but these SCOUNDRELS certainly do. This is somewhat explained by a lot of medium-tempo punk tracks (as well as faster thrash), where tunefulness is more important. Well done. They love the GERMS.

Shades of Grey Humble Friction cassette

These Twin Falls lads have really improved since the last time I saw them. Here, they display a rough-edged harmonious sound with lots of good riffs and catchy melodies. Definitely not thrash, but action-packed power punchers like YOUTH BRIGADE or the VANDALS. They could do well with some vinyl or some good studio recording.

Social Unrest SU-2000 LP

I thought that SOCIAL UNREST had lost that special spark in recent times, but lately, both live and on this new vinyl, they’re back in fine form. This slab contains HC of all tempos, and with their new personnel and Jason on vocals finally gelling, they’re a force to be reckoned with again. Excellent release.

Tall Boys Final Kick 12″

Part of that unique mixture of rockabilly and ’60s punk that some modern bands are conjuring up, TALL BOYS’ blend renders a result that works. Purists of both genres might be unhappy, most rock’n’rollers will be mighty pleased. Interesting cover of “Action Woman.”

The Bollock Brothers ’77 ’78 ’79 LP

Various punk celebrities from the old days offer their talents for this album of slower, ’77-oriented material. The absence of energy in the tempos put me off initially, but there’s some very palatable SEX PISTOL-ian material here, albeit cleaner and more refined. A decent record.

The Dead Milkmen Big Lizard in My Backyard LP

I believe this is what Jeff calls “funnypunk.” These 20 satire-laced songs are real crack-ups, and backed up by tight playing that incorporates funk, country, and lots of other styles Into their punk approach. Let’s go to the shore!

The Fall Couldn’t Get Ahead / Rollin’ Dany 7″

The FALL are getting easier and easier to take on the first listen. This 45 chronicles a day in the life of a terminal loser over a scrappy, howling song with blasts of harmonica. This flip has the first cover tune they’ve ever done, and it draws more of a rockabilly sound out of this line-up.

The Jesus and Mary Chain You Trip Me Up / Just Out of Reach 7″

Scott says they sound like a cross between psychedelia and a trebly FLIPPER. Dogtowne says they’re pretentious pretenders to the VELVET UNDERGROUND’s second LP. Whatever, they do combine pop tunes with incredibly abrasive guitar noise and feedback to produce a highly listenable product.

The Spikes 6 Sharp Cuts 12″

Excellent release that crosses post-punk with ’60s psych in a modern powerful way. Reminds a bit of fellow Australians LIME SPIDERS, and with this debut US release (this label will be presenting a lot of Aussie bands to the US) the SPIKES will make their mark.

The Stalin For Never 2xLP

This is the last testament for the STALIN, a two-record live recording. Forsaking their earlier harder-edged punk and thrash, the preponderance of songs here are harder-edged post-punk/rock punk. While not a “weak” release by any means, I found myself bored at times with the long dirges, and not excited enough by the shorter slaps. I’m spoiled by their older records.

Thee Fourgiven It Ain’t Pretty Down Here LP

This trio cranks out some cool ’60s punk, especially on the instrumental side. At times, they remind me of SYNDICATE OF SOUND, maybe even a bit tougher. But the singer tries to “sing” too much, instead of snarl, and I found that a bit annoying. Otherwise, cool band and record.

Thee Milkshakes Thee Knights of Trashe LP

Probably the only English band to truly understand American garage trash, that wonderful mixture of R’n’B and white teen angst. These incredibly prolific guys couldn’t care less that it’s not 1963, whirling on in a world of their own fueled by surf, Mersey, DIDDLEY, KINK-dom, and KINGSMEN. Boss.

True West Shot You Down / 1969 7″

On the A-side, TRUE WEST showcases a neo-generic pop style that’s so soft and unassuming that it left me completely uninvolved. The STOOGES cover on the flip, though, musters up some excitement despite the band’s continual tendency to squelch its own power. Lacks heart.

United Mutation Rainbow Person EP

The compositions on this release from UNITED MUTATION sacrifice the thrashiness of their debut for a spookier, more atmospheric approach—but it works. Churning arrangements, an aggressive HC energy, and those trademark laryngitis vocals team up to good effect especially on “Take Your Pick.” Solid and recommendable.

V/A Claws! LP

This third Throbbing Lobster comp again contains mostly pop or garage bands with some noteworthy moments—being the PRIME MOVERS, and the re-emergence of CLASSIC RUINS and WILLIE LOCO ALEXANDER, and a good track from LAST STAND. Humor Dep’t: MIGHTY IONS’ “Pedro Morales” to the tune of “California Uber Alles.” Band to watch for according to Dave Scott, who says “VOLCANO SUNS will be the next HÜSKER DÜ.”

V/A Flipside Vinyl Fanzine, Vol. 2 LP

While most of these tracks fall into the category of “good; but weak production,” you still get some pretty rippin’ tunes from MIA, DECRY, ROACH MOTEL, and DISORDERLY CONDUCT. The tracks from NAKED RAYGUN, OUTPATIENTS. and D.I. are very hot. Special live recordings from the MISFITS, JFA, and the GERMS. Cool poster included, too.

V/A New Jersey’s Got It? LP

Nine Garden State beauties (A.O.D., STETZ, CHILDREN IN ADULT JAILS, SACRED DENIAL, MY 3 SONGS, CYANAMID, PLEASED YOUTH, BODIES IN PANIC, BEDLAM) blossom forth in a well-cultivated comp. No rotten tomatoes here—just plump pickins. Jersey’s finest.

V/A Pebbles 16 LP

I guess this is where we start hitting the dross of Greg Shaw’s collection. Instead of great, nasty fuzzy punk songs from the ’60s, we’re treated to wimpy pop bands masquerading as hip political folk rock (aargh!). Although the two tracks by the GRAVEYARD 5 are pretty cool, it’s getting harder and harder to recommend this series when there are excellent compilations elsewhere.

V/A AJZ Live Trash cassette

A 50/50 proposition. The bands, with the likes of FRITES MODERN, PORNO PATROL, MAU MAUS, UPRIGHT CITIZENS, DOA, etc. are world-class, and the songs are uniformly excellent. Unfortunately, most of the recordings were culled from hand-held walkman cassettes, which doesn’t help the sound quality. I must admit that the excitement comes through, though.

V/A Alle 24 Goed! LP

An all-Belgium comp. featuring CAPITAL SCUM, KOYAANISQUATSI, WAR RISK 3, ZYKLOME A, VORTEX, and WULPSE VARKENS. This is also an all-hardcore comp, most of which is above average and well-worth obtaining.

V/A A Real Cool Time LP

By now everyone’s heard of the NOMADS, but what a pleasure to find they’re just the “tip of iceburg” as is proved by this “Distorted Sounds from the North” comp. Incredible neo-’60s punk rages forth from SHOUTLESS SLOBSTER, PYROMANIACS, CREEPS, WAYWARD SOULS, and tons more as well as aforementioned forerunners, the NOMADS. Shiver me timbers, this is awesome.

V/A Chaos in Europe LP

Despite a well-drawn but obnoxious macho cover with blatant evocations of violence, the third Chaos Production compilation proves to be another very strong release. This one has bands from all over Europe on if, thereby extending its range and variety. Herein one can find the standard French-style skunk (KOMINTERN SECT, REICH ORGASM, L’ENFANTS SAUVAGES, and Spain’s DECIBELIOS), catchy pop punk (AL KAPOTT, DREI ORLOK, Spain’s TNT, Holland’s NV LE ANDEREN, and a killer cut from Sweden’s ASTA KASK) pure Oi (BRUTAL COMBAT and Italy’s NABAT), and all sorts of punk (the KAMBRONES, Germany’s F.F.F. and NEUROTIC ARSEHOLES, and Sweden’s SLAM). Highly recommended.

V/A Fala LP

A Polish compilation LP that features both HC and reggae bands. Surprisingly well-recorded for the most part, there are some strong tracks by PROWOKACJA, ABADDON, TILT, and DEZERTER, among others, but the standout track is the title song of the LP, done by SIEKIERA. Find it if you can.

V/A Hell’s Bent on Rockin! LP

Rockabilly, the punk of its time, meets today’s punk in Psychobilly, some of the results are recorded herein. While the METEORS (who appear here) broke this trend, tons of bands have followed. And while the genre is even more restrictive than punk or HC, it still sounds good, especially the RESTLESS, DEMENTED ARE GO, and ROCHEE AND THE SARNOS. Enjoyable rockin’.

V/A La Lucha Continua!!! cassette

Three fine Spanish outfits (ODIO SOCIAL, ANTI-DOGMATIKSS, and AUTODEFENSA) share this 15-song tape—and each of the bands have something special to offer. The basic mode here is highly political thrash, and the sound is so frantic and committed that I think these tracks could justifiably be on vinyl. This is a great job; buy it!

V/A Party Pooping Punk Provocations! LP

Shesk and the Xcentric Noise R.A.T.S. continue to keep those creative juices flowing, this time with a British compilation. A well-diversified sampler with thrash mayhem from the STUPIDS, Oi-type sounds from SAMPLES and PROTEST, power Britpunk from DEATH ZONE, SELF-ABUSE, ATROX, and ANNIHILATED, and the post-punk melodies of QUEL DOMMAGE with crazy blurbs between each song.

V/A Quelli Che Urlano Ancora… LP

Maybe I’m getting spoiled by all the great Italian HC releases of late, because this comp just doesn’t reach the energy or excitement level I’ve grown accustomed to. Most of the bands here (BASTA, CANI, DIOXINA, HOPE & GLORY, ROUGH, SS20, KLAXON, among others) turn in older-style punk or Oi sounds that just don’t overwhelm. Even the normally excellent NABAT doesn’t really break through.

V/A Rot in Hell LP

Rot’s international comp with 13 bands and 22 songs featuring the VARUKERS (always kicking ass), D.O.S., BLEED, OVERDOSE, OI POLLOI, ANGRY RATS, XXX, NO CONCERN, and more. Lots of good music in a melodic vein, some fast, most medium-paced. Enjoyable for a whole sitting. Check into this.

V/A Single Ticket to Paradise EP

This is a great effort, totally mindblowing EP featuring POWERAGE, PERMANENT DAMAGE, HUMAN BEINGS, TA.S.K., CANCEROUS GROWTH, CCM, and RATTUS. Just the right amount of sonic speed energy to flail the fire at. A world sampler 7″ that scorches the wax right off some of these so-called sampler LP’s. Yea—I support this, it’s one of those rave reviews.

V/A Revenge of the Fun Squad cassette

Yet another international comp featuring Swiss, English, French, and other bands. Mainly featured are HELVET DISORD, XPOZEZ, VERDUN, STAHLWILLE, and VICIOUS CIRCLE. OK, but the sound quality is not the best.

V/A Punk Revolution cassette

This international comp features mainly Finnish, Swedish, and Brazilian bands, with a sprinkling of US and Australian. Some of the bands are: BRISTLES, MOB 47, TA.S.K. W.D.M., D.T.A.L., MASSACRE, R.O.T.A., VICIOUS CIRCLE, RUIDOS ABSURDOS, and many others. Varying sound quality, all savage.

V/A Der Idiotische Hustensaft cassette

Totally excellent tape that presents a wide variety of powerful punk/HC styles. Bands appearing include: IDIOTS, BEDROVLERZ RIM SHOUT, DIE ANNER, NORMAHL, RAYMEN, SCREAMING DEAD, DER RIB, SEPTIC PSYCHOS, etc. Rips!

Valley of Kings Victory Garden LP

Usually, I’m a sucker for murky, mysterious pop and I wanted to like this a lot more than I do. After their last 7″, I figured these guys would be ready to take on the likes of the EATS or LOVE TRACTOR, but this recording really wears thin after a couple of playings. Not necessarily bad, but maybe a little uninspired.

Variant Cause Complete Details / Marathon Man 7″

The A-side sounds like ’76 power-pop, not unlike the FAST or FURYS. The flip is much more interesting, combining original vocal tricks with more modern pop/punk Á  la early BOW WOW WOW. Not bad.

Violent Coercion House of Terror cassette

A new band from the East Bay area that features an action power sound with metallic hooks that really drives forth. Medium-paced with deep vocals over a buzzsawing guitar sound that frequently has different chords. Has a unique flavor to it, with similarities to C.O.C., BLAST, and so on. Good stuff to watch for.

Virus Dark Ages 12″

Very intelligent and cynically optimistic lyrics are combined with intense slow and fast HC to produce another excellent NY release. (For more info see article this issue.) Right up there with REAGAN YOUTH, this one should be gotten.

Wipers Wipers LP

This is a live recording, and the songs are versions of material that has appeared on all previous 12″-size WIPERS releases, as well as a few newies. WIPERS are a straightforward, driving rock’n’roll band with punk overtones and attitudes. And like a previous straightforward band, CREEDENCE CLEARWATER, WIPERS sound very much alike both live and in the studio.