Tag Archives: new york

Yeehaw! A Punk Roundup Featuring The Lowest Form, Exotica, Good Throb, and Urochromes

Ok, so there’ve been a few punk/hardcore/whatever releases over the past few months that I’ve been trying to get around to and haven’t – so now I am.  I intended to write up something individual and special to say about each of these but, fuck it, I’m gonna just put ‘em all into one, shortcut “combo” review.  Since I said “fuck it”, that makes it kinda punk, no?  No?  Oh well, here goes…

The Lowest Form, Personal Space (La Vida Es Un Mus; Iron Lung)

Personal Space is the latest from UK hardcore punk band, The Lowest Form, and it slays.  It’s part old school hc (I keep hearing alot of Wattie in the vocals, and Black Flag in the crumbling guitar sound (provided by Michael Kasparis, also part of Anxiety’s brilliant debut)) mixed with just good ol’ noise, all to great effect.  Highlights are many, and include the repeated face punch of opener, “Interplanetary Bad Boy”, which slowly drowns in its own, rich stew of hiss and feedback, and the utter chaos of “Evol”.  This record is cathartic in the ways of many a great, viscerally angry records.  In years such as this one (have there really been any?), sometimes it’s more than worth it to swallow the bile in your throat, let it burn, then scream it out.

Fitting for a band that sound like they spend a lot of time ‘off the grid’, the band don’t seem to have much internet presence.  Be sure to go and grab a copy of Personal Space (digital or “Bad Boy” vinyl) via the band, La Vida Es Un Mus or Iron Lung (in the US).

Highlights include: “Interplanetary Bad Boy”, “Gak Attack”, “Personal Space”.

Exotica, Musique Exotique #01 Demo (La Vida Es Un Mus)

Exotica wield bludgeoning, 80s (to these, admittedly, old and tinnitus-riddled ears) reanimating hardcore (I hear some of the old NYHC bands like (pre-crossover) Agnostic Front or Kraut, as well as the churning guitars of Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing-era Discharge on tracks like “Depresion”. Lead singer Lauren Gerig’s bilingual sing/scream/shriek is a revelation.  The members of Exotica are based in New York, but hail from Mexico, Argentina – play this loud enough to be heard through your own wall.

Like The Lowest Form, no real interwebs presence to allow fawning – grab a copy of Musique Exotique #01 (digital or cassette) from the band or La Vida Es Un Mus.  They also have a show coming up 12/29 in Guadalajara, MX – deets.

Highlights include: “Pesadilla”, “Passive Victim”.

Good Throb, Good Throb (La Vida Es Un Mus)

From earlier this year, the latest release from London quartet, Good Throb – and, regrettably, the last for a while, as members are now apparently geographically displaced.  Good Throb (the record) adds layers of noise and feedback to the rhythmic, punk-funk hc of 2014’s also great (and succinctly titled) Fuck Off, with tracks like highlight “SCUM” and “The Queen Sucks Nazi Cock” recalling Crass, early Butthole Surfers and Flipper.  Tasty.

Good Throb is available from the band and La Vida Es Un Mus (no, we’re not a label blog – honest!).

Highlights include: “SCUM”, “Welcome Break”.

Urochromes, “My Dickies” (Wharf Cat Records)

“I’ve got a queer theory…” so beginneth “My Dickies” is the new one from western MA, USofA band, Urochromes.  This 1 minute and change track bounces around like a kid hopped up on pixie sticks in a rubber room.  Light speed hardcore.  Cracked garage fuzz.  Avant-noise skreech.  Squirrel!  Do yourself the favor of being tugged along in its wake.  Here endeth the review.

Taken from forthcoming Night Bully EP, due January 27 from Wharf Cat Records (pre-order a copy and/or digital download here) – one more reason to be anxious for this year to end(eth).

The Men Announce New Album, “Devil Music”, Tease with “Lion’s Den”

The Men, “Lion’s Den” (Self-released)

The Men are back with a new album “Devil Music”, due November 11 and self-released by the band.  The first taste comes in the form of “Lion’s Den”, a storming new track that sounds very much like to a return to the messier, gnarlier scuzz rock/punk of their debut and away from the ‘classic rock’ tuneage of their last couple.  To these ears, it’s more than welcome.

“Lion’s Den” opens with a whirling eddy of guitars, bass, drums and skronking sax riff that wouldn’t be out of place on an album by The Stooges, The MC5 or Electric Eels.  Vocalist Nick Chiericozzi screams himself hoarse lamenting how he ended up in the titular abode.

“Devil Music” is available for digital pre-order here – let your fingers do the buying.  According a quote from their Bandcamp page, recording the album was a way to “give [the band] something enjoyable to listen to, …not just another record to get reviewed [Ed. – oops], …to participate in some sort of endless, winless game”.  We’re liking it so far – hopefully, they are, too.

Looking forward to hearing the rest of the record and to seeing The Men live again soon.  In the meantime, get the latest on their site, and check out a great write-up and interview with Chiericozzi by the good folks over at Noisey.

Review: Wall, Wall EP

Wall, Wall EP (Wharf Cat Records, 1/15/16)

Wall are a 4-piece hailing from New York City, not that you’d need me to tell you that upon listening to their new, eponymous EP.  Each track feels like a glaze of detached, old school downtown cool stretched over the twitchy, black/white UK version of early “post-punk” (used in quotation marks, ‘cuz I’m not really sure what that means anymore) and new wave.  A no wave new wave, then?  Right.  I’ll just get my coat…

Who can be bothered over categories, really, when the songs are this good.  Upon first listen, several familiar sounds come through:  Slits, Bush Tetras, Gang of Four, Crass, Basement 5 (lead track, “Cuban Cigars” reminds of “Mind Your Own Business”), on through riot grrrl, and newer bands like Savages and Vexx.  Over tightly coiled arrangements, vocalist Sam York (duties shared with bandmates Vince McClelland and Elizabeth Skadden) careens between the raised fist delivery of lines like “fresh baked bread/keeps the pigs well fed” (“Cuban Cigars”) and the detached, shrug of the shoulders and flick of the cigarette towards the gutter malevolence of “those mistresses/they don’t just lay there/at night/they prowl.…” (“Milk”).  Closer “Milk” is a highlight, swirling all of the band’s various elements in a compelling symmetry.

The Wall EP is out now, on the great Wharf Cat Records label. Check the band – and their current tour dates – on their website.