Reviews

It's Eleven

Franky Shampoo The Lost Tapes cassette

I’m not sure who this FRANKY is, but he seems to have a bit of an issue with time. Between the physical release and the small amount of info that can be found on the internet, I am being told that this batch of songs was written in the early ’80s, released in 1990, copyrighted 2006, and released now after being discovered after an unknown period of time. What’s more important is that I couldn’t possibly care less where the goof ends and reality begins because these songs are timeless enough that I could be convinced that there is truth to any combination of those wild claims. Mr. SHAMPOO and his backing band, who the internet tells me is called the CITY CREATURES (tho, I strongly suspect it may just be our sudsy new friend all on his lonesome), seem to be from Chemnitz, Germany. FRANKY plays a lovely mix of many different styles of punk. There’s some ’77-type stuff in there, some mid-tempo post-punk catchiness, some synth punk elements peppered in, it’s all done extremely well and nothing sounds out of place. I am greatly hoping there are more tapes to be discovered by this enigmatic individual. I’m feeling all frothy and lathered up, and these mere seven songs have set the bar incredibly high. What’s this? A secret track? An unlisted eighth song, full-MIDI version of “Ace of Spades”! FRANKY, you mad man! Wherever you are, come back to us, you’ve got a hit on your hands with this tape!

Night Miasma Exhausted EP

This record is a complete escape into a different world—the kind you throw on when life’s too dull and you’re ready to enter into a nostalgic daydream, heavy with reverb and German expressionist lighting. Drums beat sporadic and raw beneath deathrock guitar riffs at times accompanied by an organ straight out of a retro thriller flick. Vocals are darkly deadpan with a sound that resembles 39 CLOCKS meets ’80s-era DAMNED. The songs are complex, original, and overall more than the sum of their musical influences. The result is a record that feels poppy, but obscure—gloomy, yet energizing.

Paul Pecho Curtis Yellingmouth / Neatly Framed 7″

Folks may be familiar with PAUL PECHO (a.k.a. Paul Schlesier) through his work with Leipzig psych-rock outfit BLACK SALVATION, but this 7”, his first as a solo act, finds him exploring some of the less heavy recesses of psychedelia. Both tracks on this 7” sound an awful lot like the stuff TY SEGALL was putting out in the early 2010s—maybe splitting the difference between the garage-y Melted and the acoustic psych of Goodbye Bread. It’s mainly due to the vocals—he’s doing the whole blown-out, multi-tracked thing and howling in a similar register. But the songs themselves aren’t straight rips by any means. “Neatly Framed,” the better of the two tracks on here, takes disparate layers of garage-y riffs, noodly guitars, and woozy vocals and backs that with a  loose hearty drum beat to create a track that isn’t overtly psychedelic but has similar mind-altering effects. It’s not bad!

The Harry Anslingers Go Tranquility Base cassette

This German band named after the controversial first drug war Nazi of America plays noisy garage punk with songs crafted with an apparent love for the American space program. Fast, trashy, and fun, it reminds me of the NO-TALENTS, SPOILED BRATS, or TYRADES. Fun and confusing all at the same time, I leave it to you, kind reader, to figure this one out. Prost!