Gongfermour Pop Dada CD

To be honest, seeing a CD-only release by an American band in 2019 land on my “desk” is the shit that keeps me up at night in a cold sweat, and this little bastard did not disappoint. I assume this was meant to sound like some Rikk Agnew-era goth punk, with their reverb-drenched rock and just plain odd synths, but it falls pretty damn flat. Oddly enough, there is a completely endearing, super adorable, absolutely unrecognizable cover of “Sweet Child o’ Mine” at the end, which kinda made me like these guys a whole lot.

Tiananmen Squares Nothing Can Kill the Grimace CD

Fuck me, this is really fucking good. Nothing Can Kill The Grimace may even be the third release from this Omaha trio. According to Bandcamp they have a couple others that aren’t this one, and have been doing their thang for half a decade now. And said thang is fantastic. They do a wonderful job of channeling some of the best of late-’80s/early-’90s Yank punk. Think SCREECHING WEASEL, FIFTEEN, and OPERATION IVY. Gruff and melodic, and bloody soulful it is, too. Cover versions of NOFX and the CIRCLE JERKS are another fair pointer. With gusto!

Tiananmen Squares sXe Til Payday CD

These well-cured, veteran Omaha scenesters play pop punk in a rough OPERATION IVY or SCREECHING WEASEL style with bouncing rhythms and traded vocals. The lyrics are often introspective with the “whoas” of growing old, working, and generally dealing with life. There’s humor in songs like the title track and anger in “Faces of Meth.” They do an upbeat version of the DWARVES’ “I Will Deny.” I could be mean due to my general dislike of pop punk, but I won’t be here, as these gentlemen are fighting an uphill battle against middle-age smack dab in the middle of the country and are doing the best they can. If you’re a fan of such music, you could pick far worse than the TIANANMEN SQUARES.