I am old. I'm not just getting old, I'm already there and as I start on the long, slow decline, the best years behind me, I rely more on bands like these guys, Hollywood and Mean Jeans to remind me of the good old days when your liver was brand new and you didn't wake up until noon. You didn't care about living with six other dudes and crates of records doubled as furniture.
Hollywood says "(I Prefer) Drugs" these guys are ready to party, just like that Love Child of a full length...
Don't forget about the Record Release show Wednesday night
D.C.’s punk rock vandals The NVs has charmed the District with its brazen offerings since 2011. The quartet-comprised of vocalist Sal Go, guitarist Scott Wilson, bassist Lucas Oswalt and drummer Nathan Armstrong-recently unveiled a debut EP last fall, and will celebrate its release at DC9 this Wednesday. Before the show, I had the chance to chat with Sal about the group’s start, the new EP and future plans.
The NVs are playing their record release party this Wednesday at DC9 with Cheap Time.
Come on bands and labels, everyone is slacking on sending us cool rock n roll swag. We need records to list and review.
Best Freeby: The Xrays Calendar - The Xrays took the time to create a cool calendar with Live Pics of the band and pics of their record covers. Pretty sweet.
Best Demo: Burnt Thrones Club
Burnt Thrones Club is a two piece rock n roll outfit from Berkeley and rock they do. They play a loud noisy fast rock n roll with a lot of blues thrown in the mix. This stuff is really good. Sounds a lot like the early rock n roll releases that Big Neck Records put out early on in the labels lifestyle. Stuff like Sagger, Bantam Rooster, and Blacks. If we weren't so booked up with releases this year I would be all over this.
FATAL FIGURES-Caterwaul (Big Neck, LP)
Most of this band’s membership was in The Blowtops, who hammered out dirty, noisy garage blues churn. There’s still something of that here and they drag their songs through the muck pretty well. The songs that favor a spirited shuffle work best here—“Party Girl,” “Break Me” or “Blue Zed,”the latter song previously appearing on a 2011 single. It’s less-successful for the dragged-out “Wayne Bent” and “New God,” sounding like a musical interpretation of a hangover. Maybe not as much “VROOM” as their previous band (you should check out the Blowtops’ Blackstaticif your curiosity is piqued) but they have the right idea at times. (PO Box 8144, Reston, VA 20165, www.bigneckrecords.com)
PLATES-s/t (Big Neck, LP) Like Kim Phuc, Plates have been around for a few years, as well and and their self-titled LP is a volume-drenched head messer. Thick, huge slabs of guitar and, especially, bass (played by Biff from I Object/Brown Sugar/etc) stake out the band’s pummeling attack. I’m not sure about the point of calling one side “Flashing The Steel” and the other “Gang Shower,” but plenty of musical steel is flashed here (damn, that’s some crappy rock critiquery). This is the type of heavy, semi-abrasive rock that wouldn’t have been out of place on Amphetamine Reptile in the 90s. Nods to Hawkwind, with some of the whizzly guitar effects, and “Sentimental Jenny Jones Fodder” manages to be crushing and somewhat trippy at the same time. For pure punk-imbued raucousness, look no further than “Sociology 101” or “Under Suspect Tutelage.” Something tells me I’d need heavy-duty earplugs if I saw these guys live. I hope I get the chance. (Big Neck, PO Box 8144, Reston, VA 20195, www.bigneckrecords.com) – Al quint
FATAL FIGURES-Blue Zed/Alright (Big Neck, 7") Ugly, bluesy garage/slop with echo on the vocals for this pair of songs, one an original, the shufflin' "Blue Zed" and the flip being a cover of Pussy Galore's "Alright." The latter title sums things--'tis alright and nothing more. (PO Box 8144, Reston, VA 20195, www.bigneckrecords.com)
HOLLYWOOD-Stunts (Big Neck, CD) If you didn't tell me, I'd swear this was a new Mudhoney album, with the Mark Arm-type vocals, tongue in cheek lyrics and somewhat grungy, swampy guitar sound. It could even have been a new Monkeywrench disc, the sporadic collaboration with Mark and his Mudhoney compatriot Steve Turner, Tom Price from Gas Huffer and Tim Kerr. I've heard a new Mudhoney album in recent years and Hollywood's album is quite a bit better. Enough about those bands--let's get to Hollywood's rock 'n roll stew. The best song here is the raucous, rump-shaking "Toe-To-Toe," with a spacy instrumental break. The opener,"(Scary) Cemetery," borrows a lyrical line from the Ramones "Pet Semetary," and pounds along nicely on a sturdy bass-line, thunder-crack guitar and single note piano plink during the chorus. Bluesy, garagey, down 'n dirty rock done with simple, enjoyable aplomb. ( www.bigneckrecords.com)
WHITE WHALE-Widow's Peak/Rats In The Snow (Big Neck, 7") White Whale's previous demo and 7" were decent-enough but the two songs here don't immediately grab me. Frayed, semi-melodic punk working best on the higher-energy "Rats In The Snow," but something's missing, that extra spark to singe the ears. (PO Box 8144, Reston, VA 20195, www.bigneckrecords.com )