A WORD FROM OUR HEAD HONCHO
So its been a week and I think I am finally starting to feel recovered from Punk Rock Bowling. Yowza, what a weekend. My personal unexpected highlight was seeing Face To Face live. I’ve been a fan of the band for over 20 years and never once saw them play, and to be honest, never thought I was missing out on much. Man, was I wrong. They put on such a tight sounding set and every song they did sounded twice as good live as it did on the album. I’ve had them on constant rotation since my return to LA. Also, really quick, I want to say thank you to all the people that came up and said hi to me, or any other DS staffer wearing a DS t-shirt, out at PRB. I think I speak for the whole team when I say that we love meeting readers in person, and your kind words are always greatly appreciated – helps energize us to keep doing what what we do. But I digress. Here’s what I’m excited about in the news… Lagwagon Documentary! The Vandals are making a new record! I liked the Holophonics cover of “Girl And The Bad Guys Want’. Biffers might have been my favorite pop-punk discovery of the week. Really did their song “Bubblegum.” Wanna here some new Gaslight Anthem that’s technically not Gaslight Anthem? Listen to Brian Fallon’s new band Molly and The Zombies. Surprise! They sound EXACTLY like Gaslight Anthem – the mellower songs, anyway. Jen Fiorentino has yet to do a classic punk song injustice with her amazing acoustic covers and she kept her streak alive with The Menzingers’ “Deep Sleep.” I am fully enjoying Virginia punk act High Fives And The Hell Yeahs’ new album “Paint With Sound.”
For those of you interested in Dying Scene Records, we’re announcing our new signing this week so keep your eyes peeled. Hint: They’re our first hardcore-punk signing. If you think RKL meets Comeback Kid sounds like a pretty kick ass combo you’re gonna want to check them out.
So much awesomeness happening in punk right now. Could go on forever. But I won’t.
– Johnny X
THIS WEEK’S TOP STORIES
Here’s what you missed, what you ignored and what you’re sick of reading about.
1. So this week in lame ass band drama, Rome, of Sublime with Rome, accused Linkin Park of calling the cops on them for smoking weed in their dressing room. Linkin Park fired back, denying the allegations. Whatever. I would have ratted them out too. Rome sucks.
2. Here’s Punk Rock Hillbilly covering Pennywise’s “Bro Hymn.”
3. Deryck Whibley isn’t dead yet and he says Sum 41 will be back before you know it.
4. A Japanese ska band covered The Offspring’s “Pretty Fly For A White Guy.” I didn’t know the Japanese did ska, but I need to get into it.
5. A really cool six-year old covered Social Distortion’s “Ball And Chain.” This is fucking adorable.
6. NOFX played a sort-of-new song at Punk Rock Bowling. It’s called, “Who’s Gonna Be The First To OD?”
7. Hellcat and Smelvis Records are working on a tribute to Rancid called Hooligans United.
8. Did you guys know Atlantic records want to sign Fugazi? Me either.
9. Jenn Fiorentino is a pretty cool singer songwriter who performed a pretty cool cover of The Menzingers’ “Deep Sleep.”
10. The lineup for the Monster Energy Aftershock Festival was announced and it looks EXTREME.
DYING SCENE EXCLUSIVE STREAMS
Quebec City melodic punks Fullcount are gearing up to release their new album Concessions & Compromises on June 3rd. To hold you over ’til the beast is released, we’re bringing you an exclusive stream of a kick-ass new track that will be appearing on it!
New Orleans hardcore punk act PEARS are gearing up to release their new album Go To Prison on June 24th. To hold you over ’til the record comes out, we’re bringing you an exclusive stream of its first single!
Scottish punks The Walking Targets are gearing up to release their awesome new recordChasing Days on June 5th but you’re not gonna have to wait another second to hear it!
To summarize where they’re heading, well in a nutshell, this album sounds like Brand New got back together and dropped a record that doesn’t give a fuck. Some won’t accept that statement but look at the plateaus musically on offer here. The swells, the rises and drops of the musical signature and the diversity of the album all show it. “The Devil and Whom” features Andy Hull also, and best represents my Brand New comparison – haunting, some acoustic folly and then a big rock crescendo. Weatherbox isn’t scared of taking a chance and this record shows it. Good move because it’s their most accessible to date.
Famous Graves probably won’t change the opinions of anyone who has already made up their mind on Cheap Girls, but it does make for a great starting point for newcomers.
“M.I.” manages to be more polished yet more punk rock than their previous stuff, something a lot of bands fall short on. This whole album oozing old skool stylings of the Clash’s clean guitars and the Ramones’ energetic pop-y edge.
Even though the sound of Cresswell’s new solo album may not be as punk as you are used to, the attitude is definitely as punk and real as it can get. I give this album 4 out of 5 stars.
Discordant riffs tie the album together in a very satisfyingly pissed off package. “Bred to Fail”, the closing song, ends with the lyrics ‘We have never found a way home/Failed and broken/living too long/define in an instant what we have lost/failed and broken’, which fairly well sums up the lyrical content of the album as a whole as well as encourages me to start it again when it ends. A strong release from one of punk rock’s super groups, this record is well worth the listen.