Notes from the underground.
RULES WERE MADE TO BE BROKEN, and the best thing to hit my Inbox this month is one of those things that generally makes me cringe: an all-covers record. I don't mind if a band wants to do a cover or three, but tribute bands make me want to puke. I just saw this Beatles tribute band--kind of amusing, until you think of the assholes up on stage, living their lives living out someone else's life, fake English accent an' all, guy. So what's hit the mark this month? Electric fucking Frankenstein. These guys are bad-ass, and although it's been awhile since they seemed to be putting out three singles and an LP per month (and about one cover a record), this collection is top-shelf shit Showing the band's influences from early punk rock to hard rock to metal, EF covers the Circle Jerks, AC/DC, X, The Dictators, The Clash, The Supersuckers, Iron Maiden, Naked Raygun, Generation X, Dead Boys, Crime, Motorhead, Joan Jett, and even Johnny Cash and Fleetwood Mac (although Fleetwood Mac covers by punk hands aren't necessarily new; little known tidbit #333: Fleetwood Mac wrote the song "Somebody's Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonight" under the name Earl Vines and The Valiants as a B-side). This collection of tunes flat out locks ass. Also from TKO and is The Distraction 12" EP, entitled More Trouble at the V. Spazzy and catchy, in a Wire or Kent 3 kind of way. It's got the nifty 3D cover with glasses, but too bad it's only three songs. My guess is there's more to come ... More TKO stuff of note is the new one by Texas Terri (very scary) in which she covers an Iggy and the Stooges song ("I Got a Right") and a Thin Lizzy song ("The Rocker"). Look for--I shit you not--"Your Lips ... My Ass." ... LaVella over at Gearhead hit the mark again with another wacky themed compilation, this one entitled Thingmaker, named after a toy that allowed you to mold creepy crawly insects and skeletons and stuff, much to yet little sister's chagrin. Great stuff The Riverboat Gamblers, The New Bomb Turks, The Hives, Lazy Cowgirls, Turbo AC's, Hellacopters, Nomads, and others. Twenty-two tracks of barn burnin', boot stompin', fist wavin', pompadour combin' punk rawk and roll ... Reissue of the month: Really Rod's Teaching You the Fear on eMpTy Records. Released in 1981, it's classic Texas/American late punk as the world turned hardcore. Think about their Texas contemporaries, The Big Boys and The Dicks, and later, Bark Hard. Political and revolutionary, they tackled race and class and targeted hate and conformity before others took those poses for a trend, and they weren't afraid to stray from what punk had begun trying to dictate musically ... Finally got the demo by San Diego's The Vexors. They're back to being a five-piece, but still manage to squeeze some keys in there, and the laser blasts on "Girlfriend" make it a song destined for a Killed By Death comp, Spazzy and grim, great to see live too ... Street Thrash? I saw the cover of this band's 7" and bust out laughing--a hairy balled, skateboarding penis exploding and spelling out the band's name and pubic hair spelling out the name of the record (Five Dirty Fingers). On the back cover, flies congregating around the shit coming out of a guy who's had his head cut off, lost a foot, and has the skin around his two hands torn off to the elbow. Yeah dudes! The music is pretty straight ahead, uh, street thrash, and they cover the Bad Brains' "Don't Need It." But dude! You gotta see that cover!
Jimmy Martin Don't Cry For Me Thrill Jockey
Light Wires s/t Tiberius
Last Of The Blacksmiths Live at Hotel Utah, March '04
Trapdoor Fucking Exit Be Not Content No Idea
Redemption 87 Live at Gilman, April '04
The Soviettes LP II Adeline
Calexico Convict Pool Quarterstick/Touch and Go
Martinis Smitten Distracted
Congo Ashanti/The Congos Blood and Fire
Descendents Cool To Be You Fat