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B ... is for Bass

Review Archive:
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V WX YZ
Various Artists

Bad Religion DVD
In late December of 1990, Bad Religion had a show in Hollywood. Unfortunately, it was very oversold and the fire marshal closed it down. A "riot" broke out and a guy with a camcorder (who was trying to tape the show) caught it on film. A bunch of pissed off kids smashed the theater quite a bit and milled around in the streets throwing bottles. The cops came and hit them with fire hoses. Besides this 20 minutes of riot footage, there is a show from the Suffer tour on this disc. The sound and video quality are below average for a camcorder. There’s also footage of the band backstage getting their picture taken, milling around before a set and rolling up a banner after the set. Completist fans will absolutely love this. The rest of us (especially those who remember seeing Bad Religion during this time period) will be bored out of our minds. Buy this if you paid more than $50 for a vinyl copy of Into the Unkinwn. Music Video Distributors MM

Bakunin's Bum Fight to Win: A Benefit for OCAP
This CD is a recording of a speech by two activists from the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty backed by music from members of Godspeed, You Black Emperor, and Rhythm Activism. Included with the CD is an extensive booklet with information on the direct action taken by the grassroots organization since the mid-'90s. Actions by the group include opening the US/Canada border for demonstrators to pass freely, staging mass panhandling actions after the government imposed anti-panhandling bylaws, and taking over abandoned buildings for housing. My personal favorite, though, was them evicting the Ontario Minister of Finance from his constituency office and throwing his expensive furniture out onto the street to give him a small dose of the "extreme disruption, intense suffering, and extreme humiliation" tenants feel when bailiffs evict them. The speech by the two OCAP members is excellent and inspiring, and the music by Bakunin's Bum is interesting and challenging. Best of all, the music and speeches intertwine, with neither taking the forefront, and both allowed breathing room in the mix. A very worthwhile project that deserves your support, with all proceeds going to the OCAP. G7 Welcoming Committee JS

Zuzu Bailey Self-Titled
Not too sure if this is considered "modern" rock or file under Christian rock. Who knows? But, the question remains: IS this rock? Not really, even though they have guitars and stuff. This is more along the lines of quasi-girl, synth-pop, but on the cutting edge of sorts -- so don't try to train us into a tunnel of standard flitty chicks who handle their male band members with an iron fist. Basically. Anyway, all I know is that they all thank Jesus in their bio and talk about the greatness of God now and then. Plus, the drums are mixed in real squelchy, so it sounds as if a tin toy is keeping time off in the distance. The lead singer, Erin, has a good voice and she does well with the two other dogmatic boys and female drummer that back her up. This kind of feels like sitting next to a swimming pool on a cold day -- there, but ... just outta reach. It was fine and all, but I wasn't doing cartwheels. Maybe you will. Think Kristin Hersh meets Jars of Clay. Sort of. But ... not really. Bailey Records MW

Bane It All Comes Down to This
As much love as I have for Bane keeping heart-thumping, dancy rage alive, the formula is getting a bit old. In the new release, I hear the same chords and vocal patterns as its older brother when I was hoping to hear something different. What happened to your catchy lyrics? This fan was hoping for another "Superhero" and was disappointed. Equal Vision Records MH/AH

Bedford Spaceships, Sex and Jealousy: The Singles 1995-2000
One thing about putting words to established if not defunct bands that release a collection of singles is that no matter what I do or say their sound and "legacy" will remain and die heard fans will pick this up no matter how I wheeze and choke about it. Never the less, Bedford was a band out of Wilkes-Barre, Penn., that made angst fun in a sort of retro coalescence kind of meter. Included on this disc were standouts such as "A Million Ways to Spend My Time," "Year One," and "A Pleasant Delay." The rest rocked as well so there you go. Fans of Bedford ... duh! Um, get this. For those who have been loosing sleep wondering what the hell these guys used to sound like, this is your golden chance. Take the moment and run, RUN to the record shed. It's under B section in the "rock" area. One would believe.
Microcosm Publishing MW

The Belltones
On Deaf Ears
Oh the wit of cliché punk rock. Imagine The Vindictives at their worst and you're close. Sometimes I think they are going for a Ramones vibe, other times they miss at a Germs direct approach. This is bad because bands like this were a dime a dozen in 1994 even! At least they aren't emo, but give them five or six years to catch up. TKO records MM

Beltline These Things You Do at Four am
Following in the footsteps of bands like Sebadoh and Pavement are newcomers Beltline with their first album which they rightly call these things you do at 4 am. Recorded during various periods over the past three years or so, Beltine puts together an interesting mesh of slacker and post-prog rock with a dash of studio effects to keep it's listener busy through the 15 songs. The majority of these songs started off as a framework and over the years organs, cello, and guitars were added ... unfortunatley that's the biggest downfall of this album. These Things You Do at four am seriously lacks the cohesiveness that makes a pleasant listen and a good album. It's a noble first attempt by Portland's Beltline, but in all honesty one thing I won't be doing at 4 am, or any other time of the day for that matter, is listening to this album. Jealous Butcher Records NH


The Beltones Cheap Trinkets
Ah ... finally! A band that gets it right for a change. See, it's cool and all to be into punk rock, be into drinking beer, and get tattooed and all, but sometimes this notion gets marred by inner tension and adverse anger and becomes a cacophony of messy guitars and hateful lyrics. But when a band like The Beltones come along, you tend to sigh in relief from the backlog of inert crap groups that ruin it for the rest of us. Cheap Trinkets is a classic affirmation that rock and roll is still alive and punk is far from dead. It dies many times over with copycat outfits coming around claiming to be the OG's of some punk movement. But these guys, man ... they get my vote for the ones to watch in this New Year. It is a display of finely crafted if not slightly beer soaked punk and roll inciting many a copycat band themselves. Think of Stiff Little Fingers gone hot damn and you may have The Beltones in a slightly humbling fencing in. They do an amazing cover of Bob Marley's "Concrete Jungle" and get rather punny on you with the ditty "Shitty In Pink." If you dig '50s era rockabilly, '60s mod, and '70s punk, you will thoroughly enjoy The Beltones and Cheap Trinkets. Trust me this one time. Please! Mordam Records MW

Benjamins The Art of Disappointment
Benjamins are trying really hard to sound like Weezer or The Rentals, who in turn are trying really hard to be The Cars. The ironically titled "The Art of Disappointment" is at least third generation and third rate '80s pop, complete with sickly sweet lyrics like, "So hello, and it’s goodbye again/I’m going home to cry again/You still have all those letters I wrote you/And I still have my song." Blleeeaaarrgghh!!! Drive-Thru Records JS

Benton Falls Fighting Starlight
Everything in a CD you would expect from Deep Elm. After listening to millions of emo-indie CDs a year its great to find one that sticks out. I guess that is what I am always looking for. This bands sound is influenced by now defunct label mates Cross My Heart. When I first listened to this CD I swore that it was the singer from CMH. I was wrong. This band continues where CMH left off. Vocal rhythms and guitar style similar but not as depressing as CMH. The vocals have something most emo-indie bands lack ... passion. Great guitar work with multiple harmonies that help provide a nice melody without overpowering the vocalist. This is Benton Falls debut record and I am very impressed in the mature sound and lyrics. I really enjoyed this CD. Deep Elm AH

Jello Biafra Machine Gun in the Clowns Hand
You know it is much more interesting to see Jello live then it is to hear him on a three-disc set. It's fun to watch him elucidate with his hands and goggle at you with those big eyes and watch the sweat drip down as he goes on and on about politics even Noam Chomsky would roll his eyes at after an hour or so. Jello is saying fairly obvious stuff that, of course, needs to be addressed, but it feels more like the ranting of some dude you meet at the bar who gets on a roll about president Bush, Gore, Iraq, September 11, gun control, etc. For almost four hours we get to listen to Jello rant and rave about armchair politics for the punk rock, ill-informed lot who needs the underground obvious shoved down their throats in a fun and informative manner yet very timely. Jello's spoken word diatribes are relevant because he used to front the Dead Kennedys and is so animated and passionate about the subjects at hand that you give him space to go man go. So if you are into this, especially his past efforts such as The Big Ka-Boom and The Rolling Blackout Revue, then by all means please pick this up and be educated. He does have a point. I mean, dude ... it's Jello! Unlike Rollins, Biafra sticks it to us from the hidden headlines and makes us all want to go "I never knew it was really that bad out there." Oh yeah ... and worse. Alternative Tentacles Records MW 4.15.2003

Bigwig An Invitation to Tragedy
Pop-punk is of no interest to anyone any more, and for those still tapped into this scene, utmost condolences. For those wanting to throw away some of their time listening to genetically modified music, Bigwig are one of the better bets right now. Bringing to mind 88 Fingers Louie, Good Riddance, Pennywise, and lots of other bands too embarrassing to list, these dudes storm through 13 songs of blazing, melodic hardcore. Squint the eyes hard enough and shove lots of cotton in the ears and the sweet refrains might even sound a little like Propagandhi. But that’s wishful thinking. Fearless Records JS

The Black Heart Procession Between the Machines/After the Ladder Vinyl Single
Here are two dark, brooding and melancholic songs from a San Diego band consisting partly of members from Three Mile Pilot. Imagine Lynyrd Skynyrd teaming up with Tom Waits and Nick Cave to croon songs from Pink Floyd’s "The Wall" and you'd have an idea how unrelentingly bleak and visceral this single is. The piano-driven second song, "After The Ladder", is a bit more enjoyable than the funeral dirge that greets listeners on the A-side, "Between the Machines". It's a challenging single to be sure, though it starts to yield rewards after repeated listens. Suicide Squeeze Records ZH 4.15.2003

The Black Sea Self-Titled
Many will be touting this as Fugazi bassist Joe Lally's side-project when, in fact, it is more a vehicle for ex-Frodus guitarist/vocalist Shelby Cinca. Cinca's understated voice and poetic lyrics drive these three songs. The patented euphoric Lally bass lines do poke their heads out of gopher holes here and there, but he mostly takes a steady, rhythmic back seat. This is more Frodus than Fugazi; the feedback driven climax to "Ghost Lanterns" really says it all. Those expecting a deeper look into the musical mind of Lally, as previously exposed on Fugazi tracks like "The Kill" (Lally's turn at the helm on Fugazi's latest, The Argument), won't get any additional revelations here. Still, The Black Sea is a great new chapter in the epic novel that is DC post-hardcore. Lovitt Records JS 7.2003

The Blame No One Is Innocent
Rough and tumble punk rock that pummels back to the times of The Freeze, Agent Orange, and D.I. Three chords are used to their utmost, and the "whoa, whoa" background vocals are in full effect throughout this little 11 song Nasty Ronnie. The Blame only know how to write one song, but it’s a half decent one, interchanging plunky bass lines, rapid-fire military drum rolls, and guitar neck slides, but never straying from a simple punk formula. A cover version of The Wizard of Oz’s "Over the Rainbow" does nothing for the validity of this record, nor does the use of the word "fag" on more than one lyrical occasion, but fans of old school punk may wake from their drink-induced stupor and take momentary notice. F.U.G. Records JS

Blame Game Self-Titled EP
The front-cover packaging on my cover -- there's at least three other versions -- shows a black guy with a saxophone resting in his lap. "Ah, this has to be some kind of freaky jazz outfit," I ignorantly thought as I dropped the needle down on the record. Boy, what a big surprise I was in store for! Blame Game offers some pretty experimental hardcore with all sorts of loud/soft twist and turns, not to mention weird time signature shifts. And there's no saxophones to be found anywhere, either. This EP is technically well played and recorded, but pretty brutal on the eardrums and cranium if you're not in the mood for it. The guttural, screamed lyrics are reprinted in the liner notes in English -- and Spanish! (As though it really mattered.) Stickfigure Records ZH 4.15.2003

The Blamed Isolated Incident
Heck, if it takes God to get a band inspired these days, then I'm all for it. The love of Jesus flows through the Blamed; they even wear Stryper T-shirts in their band photos! Musically it's a rather odd emo hardcore/Helmet groove rock hybrid, a rather UNholy combination when it comes right down to it, but fairly interesting. The disc also includes a CD-ROM track for your home computer with a song video, history of the band and interview. Remember kids, and this direct from the band's thank you list, "Lord you have my heart and I will search for yours." Grrr Records JS

Blending In Behind Pastel Screens Self-Titled
Notes were scurvy on this one. To be honest, I couldn't quite place it. Now, it'd be obvious to tag it as a sort of art-noise-ambient type of thingy, but I don't wanna insult you by stating such glib factoids. Dig? It's too easy to label now a days. Actually, I guess it always has been. That's how we figure if it'll figure into our own scheme. But lets just throw all that jive aside and call a spade a spade. This is lazy art noise snoring ambient ditties set to a tonal vibe that resonates that of a pinwheel with a slight tear in it. It goes, but there's something amiss. Regardless, BIBPS gave me the creeps sometimes. See, the CD played late at night and I had a busy day at the home office so I decided to open a bottle of '97 Merlot and settle in. But, this was due and I went to work. Turns out the second I put it on, a storm began to brew outside. Now, in my tiny studio, when the wind blows, the trees outside scrape the windows and the whole place shifts a bit with each breath. This album didn't help. After the stupid building inspector came by and "fixed" this electrical problem, I've had mini brownouts at random intervals. So, outside of the frothing music, the storm, my lights were dimming at strange moments, which made me almost bust out the fading wubby (some patchwork blanky with mystery stains a go-go) I keep in this chest under the bed. I kept hoping for a pick up from the music, but it really didn't happen. It kept rolling along at an ogres pace, and the rain spat silver needles on the glass and the trees protested and the lamp turned from bright to not so all the time and I knew I was in trouble. I glugged heavily from the hearty wine and threw myself under the covers of my bed. Then the CD came to an end but nature kept at it. But then I felt safe. Blending In Behind Pastel Screens left an impression on me. Will it for you? Make sure the ol' wubby is close at hand! Crouton Records MW 1.18.2002

Blessing the Hogs The Poisoning
A down-tuned trip to the far reaches of hell (or reasonable facsimile), The Poisoning, the debut album from a Billy Anderson-led San Francisco four-piece, tears most metalcore bands a new asshole. More in the vein of the bands Anderson is famous for producing (Eyehategod, Neurosis, Buzzoven), Blessing the Hogs are a lovely mess of venom and spew, pounding and bludgeoning with blunt instruments until it's just too much to handle. Give them dexterity points for a speed-sensitive version of the classic Crucifix song, "Prejudice," and take away brain cell points for a confusing cover of the Meatmen's "Crippled Children Suck" (which chimes in at 40 seconds long). Meanwhile, their originals show no desire for formula or anything remotely listener-friendly; instead the focus is on evil, ugly sounds. After a few tracks of this, even the happy-go-luckiest will be looking to slit their wrists vertically. High praise indeed, especially for a band that has only been around since 1999. Goodfellow Records JS 7.2003

Blinder Calamity a Foot Behind
Interesting structured coffee house rock. Offtime signatures and awkward floaty guitar playing make this off-balanced band rock. The recording is very raw which benefits the guitars but not the entire band. Female backed vocals that are to high in the mix and you tend to notice all the mistakes. The vocals are in the vein of a younger inexperienced Ani Difranco. However the lyrics are straight forward and not so artsy that they don't sound sincere. The music reminds me of early '90s band Junction. Solarmanite Records AH

The Blood Brothers This Adultery Is Ripe
When a new sub-genre of punk/hardcore takes over the scene, it’s inevitable some people will be left in the dust, wondering what the fuck happened and where it all changed. When it comes to the stylish, artsy bands like The Blood Brothers, I am one of those shaking their heads in disbelief and confusion. As far as I can figure, these silly bands are a byproduct of Nation of Ulysses, who begat Rye Coalition, who begat The VSS, who begat the whole tight pants, black hair dye scene that’s taking over the world as we speak. But really, what is this shit, and how are we supposed to react to it? Is it supposed to be funny? Serious? Political? Ambiguous? Artsy? Goofy? What? Who in their right mind wants to listen to sassy men trying to sound like 10-year-olds with lisps, singing "shocking" garbage like, "Yesterday I shaved every inch of my body and mailed the hair to you?" Like a horrible, ten car pile-up, it’s hard not want to observe the Blood Brothers’ carnage, but extended listening just made me draw a bitter blank. Either I'm too old, or I'm totally missing the point here. Regardless, I welcome an explanation. Second Nature Recordings JS

Bloodjinn Leave This World Breathing
I'm sure most of you are aware by now, but my patience is condom thin for the entire metalcore genre. So when I say Bloodjinn impress me with their metalcore sounds, this is not just the naive ravings of an Eighteen Visions or Poison the Well fan. In actuality, the tendency is to automatically assume I won't like any clean-cut band of young pups who claim a Gothenberg influence and refer to their "punishing" live show. Luckily, this North Carolina five-piece sound more like disciples of Metallica's Ride the Lightning than any Swedish import, and nothing here gives evidence of them "going off" in a live setting. What results is an epic sound not often heard on the helter-skelter metalcore that dominates the scene right now. Acoustic intros and outros, soft-spoken female guest vocals, flaming guitar solos, and even a 12-minute modern day version of "For Whom the Bell Tolls" to close the album, all work wonders in Bloodjinn's favor. Okay, I'm getting a bit carried away likening anything here to one of metal's all-time-best songs. No bullshit though, Leave This World Breathing is a splash of cold water in the face from a band who take their craft seriously, cut back on the pretension and deliver a complete package that is razor conscious of pace and timelessness. Goodfellow Records JS

Bloodlet Three Humid Nights in the Cryptic Trees
If memory serves, Bloodlet were a big deal in the early to mid-'90s --neck and neck with Neurosis in the "heavy band everyone is raving about" department. Why then, after a dramatic reformation and promise of stellar new material, and especially in light of the genius still being discovered by the mighty Neurosis, does Three Humid Nights in the Cryptic Trees suck so badly? It really stinks. Singer Scott Angelacos sounds like his vocal cords were left behind in Denver (where he moved when the band dispersed). He did manage to bring along his diary full of half-baked lyrics and ideas for some of the worst vocal lines this side of [insert really annoying singer from bad, demo-quality local band here]. The rest of the band sounds tired as well, with new drummer John Stewart Jr. (fake name?) sounding more limb-challenged than Rick Allen. Perhaps he is without an arm and a leg? Even production wiz Steve Albini couldn't salvage these tired tunes, and this is the guy that made Page and Plant sound good post-1971, so he has been known to work miracles. Geez, I'd take nu-metal over this any day; Bloodlet in 2002 is a simply horrid proposition. Victory Records JS

Blood Red Self-Titled EP
My current infatuation with the latest Hot Water Music record did Blood Red's latest EP absolutely no favors. For a band that plays a similar style to HWM, this just doesn't measure up. The vocals sound forced and awkward and the songs just don't, well, sing. This New York band featuring ex-members of Silent Majority and Inside is by no means a write-off; songs like "Raging Sea" do get the blood pumping, but nothing here is going to tear you a new one. Watch for a new full-length on Initial Records. Redwood Records JS 4.15.2003

Blueline Medic
Australian for Jawbreaker. If you are one of the many who miss Jawbreaker and think of Jets to Brazil as unacceptable replacement, check out Blueline Medic. From the very first song, this thing rocks somewhere between 24 Hour Revenge Therapy and Dear You. This is incredibly good! Although they wear their influences on their sleeve, they are quite an original and solid band. I really like this record a lot.
Fueled by Ramen MM

Blutos Revenge Use Once and Destroy
Reminiscent of Helmet’s glory days and some good old-fashioned guitar rock, Blutos Revenge pummel you straight ahead and with no safety equipment given. You can almost smell the grease from the
car-yard just beyond the tracks of the freight trains. This release should get the floor moving, the heads bobbing, and the beer flowing. The best way to see this band I think is if they play in some ramshackle shed in that car-yard with the freights constantly rolling by off in the distance. Cleveland seems to dole out good "workin’ man" rock with grit and simplicity and this is a fine inclusion to that ideal. Monkey wrenches are optional. The PBR is not -- it’s required.
Thunderous Records MW

The Bodies Firepower is Our Business
Hot diggety, this is punk rock brother! Get on the floor and work that pit man. The Bodies have the affluence of the sound down to a T-ball perfection. They rock, they roll, they jimmy the jam and then they leave. You are then left to put the needle back to the beginning and start anew. But perhaps that boot to the cranium is starting to sting, so perhaps a moist towelette may help. Hailing from Sonoma County, Calif., this quartet delivers the goods like Sam Meats Alice. A little bit of OI!, a nod to gutter punk, just a dash of Lemmy style vocals and boom!, you are in for a hardcore treat my friend. Honestly, I had a blast with The Bodies. The sun was down, the curtains were drawn, the pants were off, the Schlitz was open and the stereo was up to 11. Suddenly, a knock came at my door. It was that jackass in #4. He was saying that I had my music on too loud. Well, what else am I supposed to do at 3:30 in the morning except blast The Bodies and do a merry jig on my hardwood floor? Regardless, he came in, drank some beer and is still on my couch at present. "What happened to the music?" he uttered once. "The Bodies man ... play The Bodies again!" So I did. Mind you, this is an extreme version of what you should do while enjoying the band. In the viscous life of the rock journalist, you have to take it as it comes. Rock on Ohio! Mordam Records MW

Bonny Billy More Revery
Imagine the boneyard at the end of a long night drive. That thick blue of dawn is coming and some bland filling station coffee is all you have to keep you going. You park your rig by the front gate and walk inside. Its chilly and filled with white marbled monuments to bones in boxes. You're about to sit down when a noise off in the distance breaks the cold still of the pre sun. A band, and a good one at that, wafts over the well kept lawn as you sip that coffee, ponder your own fate and begin to notice shadows. It is a cooing drift of slight rock/country lounge/B-movie overlay, and it helps with the immediate situation. They play for about 20 minutes then stop, leaving you wanting more. So you go back to your car, get in, and turn on the radio. But, its been stolen. Now what? Temporary Residence Ltd. MW

Botch An Anthology of Dead Ends
I've always been super hard on Botch. Maybe it was their stylish demeanor, or perhaps it was just being sick of hearing about them circa American Nervoso (early '98). Whatever the case, this postpartum EP of the last six songs they recorded before implosion is one of the best things I've heard this year. A continuation of the mind-melting they did on We Are the Romans, An Anthology of Dead Ends is perhaps the pinnacle of metalcore; and something tells me it's all downhill from here. This genre can now officially fold up and die (but, of course, it won't) because nobody will ever match the bellowing beauty of these songs. Hydra Head Records JS 7.2003

Brandtson Fallen Star Collection
This is better than I thought it would be. I thought it would be sleepier like Karate, but this is fairly poppy. Though it's nothing too original, the lyrics and the music are interesting. Unlike most bands of this genre, you can actually tell the songs apart. Fans will love it. Deep Elm Records MH/AH

Brandtson Trying to Figure Each Other Out
An ethereal sound permeates this six song EP by Cleveland, Ohio’s Brandtson. With Jesus himself making tops on their thank you list, it’s positive the boys in the band would love that compliment, good little angels that they are. Sickly sweet but beautiful tunes here, similar in scope and sound to later Jimmy Eat World. The bass line in "12th & Middle" envelopes the ears like a warm pair of earmuffs, and swirls in and amongst your cake hole. Brandtson are one of the few bands who can get away with a short EP without leaving a feeling of being ripped off or wanting to hear more. Any longer and this would have been boring, any shorter and it would be a tease. Great little batch of songs courtesy of a pretty band of melodic, God-fearing cupids. Deep Elm Records JS


Brandtson Dial in Sounds
There are just too many styles of music out there. Fifty different factions of heavy metal; at least a hundred of rock; even more with hip-hop and electro. So, I'm gonna try my hand at a new label of rock. How's this? "Dentist Rock?" It makes NO SENSE whatsoever, but believe me, when I tossed on Brandtson here, that's the only thing I could think of. Basically I was having episodes of flashbacks regarding that misfit elf himself Hermie, the fresh lidded imp from the holiday classic "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer." That kid would be way in to this band. How, why, what you may ask. Well, here's the scoop-a-roo. These guys divvy up the goods with a fine selection of distortion, melodies, basic aggression, and some infectious-style lyrics jamming the neo-spiritual thing at you. But for some odd-ball reason, it just misses the mark by a hair. Almost grabbing my codpiece but letting go at the last minute when things just start to get really hot n heavy. Hence: Dentist Rock. One day in the very near future, when our kids, the same ones who were introduced to hardcore music at the get-go and the barrage of advertisements to deaden the inner soul all together, are getting their job on for basic survival (and some may be dentists) they may be apt to play this kind of stuff. Just think what the kids of our kid's kids will be into! Wow. It staggers the mind. And Brandtson just kind of staggers. Too much novocaine I suppose! Deep Elm Records MW

Buck Wild Full Metal Overdrive
Ah, geez, this whole pop-punkers paying homage to heavy metal thing has to stop. Buck Wild appear on their CD cover doing their best glam metal impersonation, including fishnet spandex outfits, but sound like every other NOFX clone when the disc spins. In a way, it makes sense, I guess. A few years back, pop punk was to punk/hardcore as glam was to true metal in the ‘80s. Laughable, clone bands making goofy faces and doing way too many scissor kicks onstage. Today, this silly attempt at a metal tribute is just stupid -- it’s more likely Buck Wild discovered metal as the current trendy way to act cool, rather than the disturbing and obsessive underground subculture it really is. These guys are too well dressed and hip-looking to listen to Ronnie James Dio and use the lyrics to "Rock ‘N’ Roll Children" as a metaphor for their loneliness and despair like a true metalhead would. Lobster Records JS

Buck Wild Beat Me Silly
A band that truly lives up to its name. Not that these guys are so freaky that you end up in coniptions or start eating the sofa because the music coming from your stereo is so insane, but, you get the idea. Unfortunately, the four boys come across sounding like some jock frat bros who wanna be in a rock band and are just one notch up from the evils that lurk within the truth of beer bongs and going "woo!" at intervals of mild celebration. Nothing Earth shattering, but not bad either. Good for a backyard kegger or playing in your Jetta on the way to it. They try to lower that notch a bit by putting an image of a sqashed mouse on the album cover -- guts coming out and that last look of hellish pain on its face. It depressed the heck outta me. Maybe these guys are assholes. I don’t know. The music is alright. Lobster Records MW

Burning Heads Escape
When you think of France, you rarely conjure up images of mosh pits or hear the blistering tones of rampant hardcore. But, here it is: four dudes from Orleans who bust it New York punk style, fast and furious, no holds barred, and without the pretention us yanks here have come to know and loathe about those who worship Jerry Lewis. If you like relentless youth-soaked hardcore at its pop finest, then Burning Heads is for you. "Escape" is a 15 tracked melange of uzi drums, sweaty guitars and harmonious vocals completing the cycle of continuous contributions to angst release through music rather than abject discordance. You know you’re in for a treat when the band includes a picture of them playing live and all of the frontmen are jumping in syncopated mania. There should be a term for this or a new style of punk and hardcore: those who choose to constantly be airborne in promo shots. I don’t know. I just see a lot of that. Victory Records MW



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Also in Song ...
Song Archive

JS - Jason Schreurs

MW - Mark Whittaker

KG - Kenny George

ZH - Zachary Houle

MH - Melissa Hostetler

RG - Ryan Gowland

CS - Cameron Smith

CR - Chuck Reith

CO - Cory O'Malley

BD - Bruce Duncanson

JR - Jessica Richman

GW - Greg Wilson

DG - Daniel Garret

JT - Jessie Turner



















































































































































































































































































































































































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