Notes from the underground.
SLIGHTLY SPASMODIC AND A BIT surf-influenced (organ up front) is the Motor City's The Piranhas and their debut LP from On/On Switch records. It's chaotic, and their singer sounds like he's wailing his guts out at times. It's also got a nifty closed groove on the A-side; to get to the song that follows you have to skip to the end and it plays backward. Weird! Not only that, their drummer's name is Ling Ling, but isn't the giant panda at Mexico City's Chapultepec Zoo... Check the new Flip Tops LP All Worked Up on Rip Off for some back-to-the-basics rowdy garage punk. Girls, sniffin' glue, and violence--the perfect recipe for a good time... OK, so I bought the Cool Jerks LP Cleaned a Lot of Plates in Memphis on Sympathy because of the panty cover shot. But on closer inspection of the interior, it's a dynamite. It rocks in a similar way to the earlier Humpers, just take out the power chords and replace them with something much bluesier and slow it down a notch. Geez, that doesn't sound quite right. Suffice it to say they've paid attention to where they're from... From San Diego come the Tori Cobras and their twin guitar barrage. Squire from the Mach 5 Overdrive is back and this one cuts the garage tinge and goes straight for the swift chop to the neck... And if your appetite has been whetted for guitar rock, follow through with the Hellacopters' Cream of the Crap on Gearhead records, a collection of comp cuts and singles, including some killer covers: The Victims' "Television Addict," The Stones' "Gimme Shelter," Social Distortion's "The Creeps." These Swedes made their mark in a fury of guitar, and this goes back to some of the older stuff. Horns all around, kids... Also on Gearhead is the New Bomb Turks, The Night Before the Day the Earth Stood Still. It's got the same paint peelin' tunes they've always been known for, tongue in cheek lyrics etc, but this one's gettin' a little more play. The classic Destroy Oh Boy will forever stand on its own, but this new shit is up there too... On the 7" front comes The Distrac tion. This one has a kind of whiny appeal much as the first Peechees stuff did, sorta kerky-jerky. Check their Transmission Ignition 7" on Pelado Records... And weighing in at just under a 7" is a new one from Japanese noisesters Melt banana. It's a 6" record entitled 666 on Level Plane records. Spazmo at its best, starts and stops, feedback and guitar noise--these guys and girl rule and must be seen live to be believed. My friend summed them up in one word: "Ouch." ... Look for Corrosion of / Conformity's Eye for an Eye; their first LP, re-issued. This was their best record--these guys influenced a whole generation who took what they did and turned it more grindcore or metal. Definitely a classic, and tricky basslines to boot... A great LP re-issue is the Flamin' Groovies' Slow Death. Despite the name, they weren't some hippy band from the '70s, but rocked solid with a kind of boogie-woogie side at times. Roy Loney is still playing to this day in bands such as the Phantom Movers... And an awesome 7" re-issue is the Haskels Taking the City by Storm. No label here, and some of the identifying marks are burned off the record, so this is pretty much bootleg territory. Rockin' '70s stuff that fits the "Killed by Death" category, this shit smokes.
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Drop your acts, Decapitated reached our shores last July to start their first tour of the States. They already dropped one album in their festering teen years and their second album Nihility proves they got a strangle-hold on their own mechanical style. With a fresh rotting smell in the air, I tracked them down at Metal Fest in Milwaukee and forced some English out of them over a couple Millers. Decapitated is Sauron, vocals; Martin, bass; Vogg, guitar; and Vitek, drums. Here's what I got...
Where in Poland are you from?
Martin: We're from Krosno.
Vader being a great band from Poland, have they influenced you at all?
Martin: We've been listening to them since we started playing metal. They are very famous in Poland but we want to play our music and don't want to copy Vader.
So this is your first tour in the US? Was New York the first city you played in?
Martin: No. We arrived in New York but our first gig was in Columbus, our second was here in Milwaukee, and our third will be in New York.
Did you pick up skating back in Poland?
Vitek: No, no. We play football, soccer.
What inspires those lyrics?
Sauron: It's the observation of the world and environment. It's hard to say, you have to read it and think about it. I write in Polish and then someone translates it to me.
Do you have any rival bands you want to crush? What about Blink 182 or Limp Bizkit?
Martin: Maybe some bands in Poland, but you would not know them.
Celtic Frost, how do you feel about that band?
Martin: Ahh, they're old and famous. Respected by people, but not our favorite.
What about Dying Fetus?
Martin: I think they are a very good band. We're playing in New York with them. Can't wait!
When is the band more satisfied, after playing a killer gig or when you're finished cutting an album?
Martin: It's not the same, it's two different things. When we are in the studio we play new beats, play whatever we want and as long as we want. But a gig is just wild--we have to give as much power as we can.
So the airline lost your guitar and you had to play Erik Rutan's (of Hate Eternal) guitar?
Martin: Delta Airlines lost the guitar.
Did you get it back?
Those bastards! Well thanks for the English, cheers.