World War IX
Brown Baggin' It
While you and I are sitting here, surfing the internet for weird & spicy porn, the cleverly named NYC punk band World War IX are building a whole media empire out...well, out of paper bags and other household items. What we have here is a 7" single on hard-to-get black wax with four songs of snotty, old-skull, spent-the-rent punk rock (Treasure Hunt is the big winner; its about crawling around some dude's apartment, looking for drugs) wrapped in an attractive brown bag (hence the title). Assuming that anybody who listens/follows this band has serious issues with alcohol, the bag will come in handy to either puke in, or to wear when robbing a convenience store for beer money. I love it, man. The songs sound like the kind of wretched noise bands here in Boston were spewing up in the mid 80's - Gang Green, PTL Klub, whoever was putting up with GG Allin in 1984, stuff like that, and the package is just a riot. Something like this has gotta be limited - how many brown lunch bags are there in the world? - so, you know, better snatch one up quick.
PS: World War IX also have their own comic book. They're not superheroes or nothin', but they do have adventures. Eviction-y, parole-y type adventures.
Clip: World War IX, Portrait of Sobriety (with footage, not surprisingly, from Strange Brew)
Candy from Strangers
Me: Have I gone mad? What are the Hollywood Vampires doing in Oslo? Aren't they Italian?
Google: There's two of them. Also, Alice Cooper and the dead guy from The Who were Hollywood Vampires as well. So whatever, it's not that exclusive a club.
Thanks, Google. The Norwegian version of the HVs actually toured Italy recently, so I wonder if they had a dust-up with their spaghetti doppelgangers to see who gets to keep the name? Anyway, doesn't really matter to me. Sun's still gonna shine. As to the reason we're here today, what we're looking at is a five song EP of catchy, Trashcan Darlings-y glam-punk with hilariously coal-black lyrics about murder, necrophilia, gurgling blood, werewolves, etc. Their sound is propulsive and swaggering, obviously influenced by 80's flash-rock, and the production is big, loud, and polished. Murder, mayhem, fishnets. I dig it. I dig it like a grave.
Direct from the Superfreak Highway
Killing Pig Records
Evergreen rock n' roll stuporhero Paul Diamond Blow rallies his Seattle troops once more for a hi-fi sci-fi rocket-ride through the groovier outreaches of 70's glam for what I am going to assume, given the space-centric titles and lyrics, is a concept record about...I'm thinking the downfall of Space Hog? Something like that. The music, by the way, is fuckin' stellar. I don't know if I've ever written about these dudes before, but this is no measly, skinny-armed glampunk band, these dudes wield heavy axes, and write full-on acid-glam party-punk epics. They're like a sleazy T Rex writing the soundtrack for a $10 million dollar remake of Wham Bam Thank You Mr. Spaceman starring Summer Cummings and Jesus. Throw on any of these tripped-out laser-rock flip-outs: Get Spaced, Rocket Roll, Future Hoppin', etc, and you'll get a snoutful of melt-the-floor rawk sprinkled liberally with fizzy pop flavors. Fans of Science Fiction Idols, Robin Black, Crash Kelly, all that good, gooey nu-glam oughta adjust the dials on your jet-age rock-receivers and tune into these crazy transmissions.
PS: Contains bonus holiday track, Merry Christmas Baby, which would have been a lot more relevant if I had reviewed this when I was supposed to a couple months ago. Ah, well. Play it next year.
Clip: Paul Diamond Blow wants to take you for a ride on the Superfreak Highway...
Son of Eric
First solo record from former Torok shredder Bryan Erickson who was recently voted - and who the fuck knows how they measure such a thing - third fastest guitar player alive. The fastest? A robot. The second fastest? Takes speed all day long. Eats it in pellets. So, for my money, Bryan is the real winner here. Interestingly, he doesn't really play that fast on Epiphany. This is more of a mid-tempo, post-grunge creepy-crawl, not unlike late period Alice in Chains or the equally late, but not nearly as lamented, Supafuzz. Goes without saying that the guitar is stellar, but Bryan's vox are equally arena-ready, and some of the grooves - particularly on Born - are so deep and thick they leave tire treads. Impressive stuff, well worth a sniff if you're of the traditional hard-rock persuasion.
Fucked if I Know
I had this one sitting around for a while and I am sure that, at some point, I knew exactly what it was. But that time has long past. Now it's just a CDR with no name and a disturbingly primitive color Xerox cover of two cavemen/Eskimos (hard to tell which) discovering a busted satellite in the snow. After nearly four and a half minutes, I ascertained that this is, in fact, a 'live demo' from Trebuchet, a UK band known for their Grand Funky power-rock and their haphazard marketing plans. For what it is, the fuckin' thing is a rocker, a great and tumultuous bashing of ape-man thuggery, a shameless ode to early 70's belly-over-the-buckle biker sludge. Party Like Crazy is clearly the anthem of the evening, a fist-waving call-to-chaos that practically reeks of beer sweat right through the speakers, but Trebuchet are not one to let go of a solid idea, so variations on the theme roll out pretty relentlessly: Let It Rock, Give Me Rock n' Roll, Punched in the Nuts, etc. I'm guessing this exists because Trebuchet haven't hit the studio yet, so give it a listen via Myspace and wait for the inevitable double-album gatefold.