The Jars Make Love Not War LP
Forming from the ashes of SST (band, not label), the JARS were an active, if marginal, player in the early Berkeley punk scene. Their first single (Start Rite Now) was just the fourth release on the now legendary Subterranean label. Despite their links to bands like FLIPPER and DEAD KENNEDYS, the JARS’ brand of self-described “psycho-pop” owes more to ’60s surf and garage than their California punk contemporaries. This archival collection compiles the entirety of their recorded output: a couple of singles alongside several live tracks and unreleased studio recordings. Tracks like “Start Rite Now” and “Teenage Rebellion” are bright, simple pop songs with a zany edge courtesy of a Farfisa organ, while on other tracks, such as “Electric 3rd Rail,” they stretch out into more discomfiting territory. Their ’60s influences are made most obvious by a handful of live instrumental covers of classic TV show themes, as well as a SONICS cover (“Psycho”). It’s a good time. Fans of Bay Area punk history and ROKY ERICKSON’s songs about creatures with atom brains will enjoy the JARS’ good-natured kitschiness.