Search Results for "Fat Wreck Chords"

The Dirty Nil – ‘Minimum R&B’

Since the birth of punk, numerous fledgling bands have learnt their craft through the release of limited edition 7” and EPs. In this, the internet age, platforms such as bandcamp have made it fundamentally easier and more economically viable for bands and smaller labels to release these offerings and gradually build a following before launching into the critical and commercial minefield that is releasing your debut album. This is exactly the path followed by Canadian rockers, The Dirty Nil. Their phenomenal debut album Higher Power was the culmination of everything they had learnt from five years of recording and, for many, it was their first introduction to a band who are quickly forging a reputation as one of the most exciting rock bands around. Thankfully, Dine Alone and Fat Wreck Chords have joined together to offer a fascinating insight into the creative growth of the band by releasing this compilation of all of their 7”s and EPs to date. Now those who have had their appetite whetted by Higher Power  can take a trip through their history to find a band who, from the very beginning, have been making nose-bleed inducing, scuffed up, perfect slacker anthems.

Debut single “Fucking Up Young” saw the band come out swinging with a thrillingly raw and infectious single that has to rank as one of the best debut singles of the modern era. The bare bones production and the rough and ready scuzzy guitars are refreshingly gritty and authentic, coming across like an old, dusty artifact of the band’s origins. It perfectly captures that moment in time where the band threw themselves into what (for all they knew) could have been their only shot at cutting a single. The band hadn’t had to time to overthink things, just plug in and play. It helps that their sound had already been honed through years of touring as the take sounds live with stop-start, wigged out guitars and short sharp bursts of percussion. The B-side from the single “Verona Lung” is a similarly spiky, unpolished gem of an alt-rock song which combines the deceptive simplicity of Pixies and the vulnerable howl of Rivers Cuomo.

Next up comes “Little Metal Baby Fist” and “Hate is a Stone” from their “Little Baby Fist” EP – “Little Baby Fist” blends together equal parts Husker Du, The Replacements and Fugazi to leave an uncompromising, explosive punk song with a hook you could hang a T-Rex from. Their 2014 7”, “Cinnamon” b/w “Guided By Vices”, their first for Fat Wreck Chords, has a grungier feel but is anything but derivative, coming across like a lost Nirvana cover of the Vaselines from their Incesticide album. “Guided by Vices” in particular has a riff that could instantly oxygenate your blood as the band coil a classic rock n roll riff into an incendiary ball of noise.

“Nicotine”, “Beat”, “New Flesh” and “Pale Blue” all come from 2014’s “Smite” EP. “Nicotine” distorts a standard blues shuffle  while“Beat” kicks in the door, taking the classic punk sound of The Damned and views it through the prism of 80’s DC Hardcore. “New Flesh” shows a more hardcore side to the band with the band kneeling at the altar of hardcore legends Minor Threat. Original bass player Dave Nardi takes over vocal duties to scream himself inside out as the band pummel through a full throttle slab of abrasive, caustic hardcore. Closer “Caroline” is a mid-tempo waltz which sees the band combine their sound with classic 60s melodies. It builds to a swirling whirl of biting guitars with singer Luke Bentham howling and lamenting through the din.
This compilation acts as the perfect introduction for those taken in by their hook-laden, riff-heavy, fiery debut and are thirsty for more. It’s an exhilarating flick through their discography to date and after repeated listening it doesn’t feel so much a compilation as an early greatest hits record.

4.5/5 Stars



DS Photo Galley: Face To Face and Lost In Society (Somerville, MA)

On a personal note, the release Face To Face‘s last album was a bit of a big deal. Not only did it mark the seminal SoCal punk band’s triumphant return to their previous label home, Fat Wreck Chords, but as we all know, new albums are typically followed by new tours, and Face To Face have long been one of the premier live bands in the business. It may have taken a little bit longer than was initially hoped, but May 2017 finally brought us the Econolive 2017 tour, which featured the band pulling double duty; an acoustic set for VIP ticket-holders in the early evening, followed by the normal fully plugged-n main set that has been the band’s bread and butter over the decades. We caught the show at the Once Ballroom in Somerville, Massachusetts, last Friday, and we’re pretty sure it’ll rank as one of the best shows we catch in any venue this year.

In many ways, the VIP pre-set is a tip-of-the-cap to the fans who missed out on the acoustic Ignorance Is Bliss shows that Face To Face’s Trever Keith and Scott Shiflett put on five years ago. The duo didn’t play too many dates on those small runs, leaving a large number of long-time fans clamoring for a chance to catch the increasingly respected album played in such a stripped down format. For the Econolive ’17 dates, Keith and Shiflett are joined by their bandmates Danny Thompson (drums) and Dennis Hill (guitar) for a more filled-out performance that included not only songs from Ignorance… but a handful of reworked tracks that might otherwise appear in the band’s main set on a normal night. Longtime crowd favorites “Don’t Turn Away” and “1000x” made appearances in the stripped down set, alongside a varied collection from fairly deep in the catalog, like “Everyone Hates A No It All,” Protection track “Keep Your Chin Up,” and INXS’s “Don’t Change,” a track that Face To Face originally covered on their 1999 album Standards & Practices. This portion of the evening was open to a couple dozen people who dropped extra money for the VIP experience, and it the intimate nature and unique song selection genuinely equated to a special experience.

Doors opened to the main show shortly after the completion of the acoustic set, and not long before Lost In Society took the stage. The Jersey-based band jumped on the Face To Face tour for four northeast dates before heading west on a three-week US tour of their own. The typically three-piece punk band are aggressive, at times even ferocious, playing a raw style that hearkens back to the early 90’s alternative movement; Mudhoney or Nirvana or Screaming Trees are fair comparisons from a sonic perspective. They were joined on stage by The Scandals’ Jared Hart on second guitar for the last half of the set, further filling out the sound and allowing frontman Zack Moyle to perform the last couple songs on vocals only, baring more than a passing resemblance to Strung Out’s Jason Cruz’s level of intensity. (The band have a new, Pete Steinkopf-produced EP available here.)

Face To Face’s main set was among the best, most energetic I’ve seen them play in the greater Boston area in a solid decade. The Boston market can be a bit of a rapidly-cycling bipolar one at times, resulting in a weird phenomenon in which the same band can receive categorically opposite reactions on consecutive times through the area. Perhaps due to the fact that it had been almost four years since their last appearance in the greater Boston area (no, Providence doesn’t count), perhaps due to the fact that Protection has been the band’s best-received album probably since 2002’s How To Ruin Anything (if not even earlier), the old punks were out in full-force on this rainy, unseasonably cool Friday Boston evening.

The band kicked off their headline, fully plugged-in set with “You Lied,” met by an eager response from a fired-up crowd. From that point forward, band and crowd performed in perfectly symbiotic fashion, each seeming to provide the fuel for the other’s engine. Like the acoustic set before it, the main set was a pretty representative cross-section of the band’s discography, with only the band’s 2013 album Three Chords And A Half Truth serving as the only album not featured on the evening. The sixteen song main set was effectively broken down into four-song quarters, each featuring a track from Protection nestled in amongst tracks from the more classic catalog, particularly those from the “Triple Crown” albums (Don’t Turn Away, Big Choice and the self-titled 1996 full-length). Tracks like “Double Crossed,” “Say What You Want” and “I Won’t Say I’m Sorry” seemed right at home alongside long-time crowd favorites like “Pastel” and “Ordinary” and “Blind.”

The band took the makeshift stage in the ballroom for a two song encore that consisted of their cover of the Descendents’ track “Bikeage” and, of course, their biggest single, “Disconnected.” Like the remainder of the band’s set, the last two songs found the venue’s dance floor (not unlike that found at your local wedding banquet hall) converted into the closest thing you’ll find to a circle pit in the New England region, and it legitimately seemed like both the quartet and the crowd were energized enough to continue well into the early hours of the morning with no signs of slowing down. It can sometimes take a lot for the old timey punks to step away from the couch and the Netflix to head to a show nowadays (more on that in our upcoming sit-down with F2F front man Trever Keith in the next couple of days), but if the Econolive ’17 tour is any indication, it’s well worth the effort.

Check out our full photo gallery below!



Face To Face perform live acoustic session

Face to Face recently performed a live, acoustic studio session for Paste Magazine. The 20 minute video is a mixture of songs and interviews, with the band playing renditions of “A-OK”, “Burden”, and “Keep Your Chin Up”.

You can watch the full performance on the Paste website.



New Music: Face To Face – “I, Me, Mine”

As you may know by now, SoCal punk veterans Face To Face put out a new 7-inch single for their track “Say What You Want” a couple days ago. What you may not know is that the B-side is a band new track called “I, Me, Mine”…AND you can check that song out below!

“Say What You Want” appears in its original form on the band’s latest album, Protection, which was released last may on Fat Wreck Chords. The single was released last Friday (May 5), also by Fat. The band are presently on a nationwide US tour, dubbed “Econo-Live ’17” Check details here.



PEARS announce European tour

New Orleans punks PEARS have announced they will be touring Europe this summer. The tour kicks off in Denmark on July 21st and will wrap up on August 13th in Italy.

Check out the dates and locations below to see if they’re stopping near you.

PEARS’ sophomore album Green Star came out in 2016 through Fat Wreck Chords.



Bad Cop/Bad Cop announce album “Warriors”, stream song “Womanarchist”

Prepare yourself for new Bad Cop/Bad Cop! The Californian pop-punk four piece has just announced their sophomore full length album, “Warriors,” will be released via Fat Wreck Chords on June 16, 2017.

To get you fired up you can stream a brand new track from the album titled “Womanarchist” below.



DS Photo Gallery: Me First and the Gimme Gimmes (w/ Masked Intruder and PEARS), Boston, MA

America’s favorite punk rock lounge act supergroup coverband, Me First And The Gimme Gimmes, brought the East Coast leg of their tour in support of their greatest hits album, Rake It In: The Greatestest Hits (April 7th, Fat Wreck Chords), through Boston late last week, their first area appearance in close to seven years. The touring lineup of the Gimmes has been a bit of an ongoing, evolving thing over the years, and honestly that’s one of the things that keeps the band fun and compelling as a live act. On this particular run, founding Gimmes Spike Slawson (vocals, occasional uke hunter), Joey Cape (guitar) and Dave Raun (drums) were joined by longtime touring Gimme Scott Shiflett all but taking over his kid brother Chris’s spot on lead guitar and Bad Religion’s Jay Bentley manning Fat Mike’s bass player battle station.

The Gimmes are always a fun time, and this particular night was no exception. One could imagine a situation in which a revolving cast of punk rock characters in their third decade as a recording and touring cover band (side note: the “Denver” 7-inch came out in 1995 and that doesn’t seem real) would have the occasion to go through the proverbial motions, but that hasn’t been the case. Bentley and Shiflett especially displayed an awful lot of playful stage interplay throughout the set, the latter using the opportunity to flex his mighty, mighty lead guitar skills that obviously get overlooked in his normal role as Face To Face’s bass player for the last few decades. Spike Slawson has long since outwardly embraced the role of schticky, occasionally raunchy lounge act crooner, so much so that you sometimes lose sight of the fact that the guy can actually, really, genuinely sing to a degree that he’s made a handful of other people’s songs sound like his own. The ukulele-led rendition of Madonna’s “Crazy For You” from 2014’s Are We Not Men? We Are DIVA! is a perfect example, though it’s worth noting that Madonna didn’t actually write the song either, so at this point it’s just as much Slawson’s as hers. But I digress. Long story short, Boston can be a bit of a notoriously finicky place for punk bands to play. On this particular night, Me First And The Gimme Gimme’s haven’t put out a new studio album (Greatestest Hits notwithstanding) in three years and still headlined in front of more Bostonians at the packed-to-the-rafters 1100-ish capacity Royale nighclub than they have played for in any of their past headlining gigs here in at least a decade, and that’s a pretty awesome thing.

Masked Intruder and PEARS provided direct and opening support in that order. The crowd at Royale turned out in larger capacity for PEARS than I have ever really seen at that particular venue, notorious for their early start times (can’t keep the EDM crowd waiting…), which was inspiring for a band that’s got a more raw, aggressive, throwback punk rock sound than many of their peers. Frontman Zach Quinn performs as though he’s from a bygone era, his banshee-like wailing and shirtless, sweat-covered pacing around the stage creating the impression of a caged animal chomping at the bit to be released.

Masked Intruder seem to be a perfect fit for any lineup that includes Me First And The Gimme Gimme’s. They might have a schtick of their own going, but it’s a really, really good one. Intruder Red was not behind the drum kit on this particular run — he’s in jail, naturally — but the band seemed to miss nary a beat with Lipstick Homicide’s Luke Ferguson taking up drum duties. Masked Intruder are a fun band who seem to take their role as a “fun band” seriously, without taking themselves too seriously. Blue and Green lead most of the high energy charge, having perfected personas as pseudo-New York tough guy common street criminals, at least until roughly the set’s halfway point, when Officer Bradford gradually loosens up and strips down, at which time the whole thing has the potential to devolve completely. Again, it’s schtick, but it’s a lot of fun and it’s all very well done.

Check out our full photo gallery below, and check out upcoming Gimmes dates here.

 



New Punk Rock Bowling club show announced featuring PEARS, Direct Hit!, and Problem Daughter

As if the main lineup and club show lineup of Punk Rock Bowling couldn’t get any more stacked, a new club show was just announced featuring PEARS, Direct Hit!, and Dying Scene favorites, Problem Daughter.

The show will take place at 10pm on May 27th in Las Vegas at Hogs N Heifers Saloon. The show will also serve as a benefit for Love Hope Strength Foundation.



Direct Hit! (pop punk) perform “Do The Sick” Live! from The Rock Room

Pop-punks Direct Hit! recently visited Live from The Rock Room and captured some sweet video footage in the process. “Do The Sick” is off of their 2016 album Wasted Mind, out on Fat Wreck Chords. I’m not sure what they’re putting in the cheese out there in the Midwest, but the music coming outta there recently has been fan-tast-ic, and Direct Hit! is no exception.

You can check out the video, album and some tour dates below.



Face to Face release video for “Say What You Want”

Face To Face just released the new video for “Say What You Want,” off the 2016 album “Protection.” Check it out below.

Released through Fat Wreck Chords, the track deals with “how speech is often protected to be exclusionary of people who have divergent opinions from the accepted social norms. You really can’t say what you want (Trever Keith, vocals and guitar).” 

“Protection” was released in March 2016, a follow up to 2013’s “Three Chords and A Half Truth.”



Show Review: Leftover Crack, Starving Wolves, Bad Cop/ Bad Cop @ the WOW Hall Eugene, OR


I could have seen Leftover Crack in Portland. In fact, I have before. I’ve seen them tear it up at the Hawthorne, I’ve seen them in Vegas, tearing it up at Punk Rock Bowling. Both times they were great– energetic and fun, bringing a sense of musical ambition and bravado to their radical anthems. This time though, I saw a chance to see a friend in Eugene and catch a band guaranteed to kill it. I’d never been to Eugene before, so it amounted to the question, “Why not?”

Besides an excuse to see an old friend, what drew me to this particular tour was just how ridiculously strong the lineup was. Leftover Crack was headlining, of course. Then there was Austin upstarts Starving Wolves, and then the amazingly melodic Bad Cop/ Bad Cop. It was the latter that I hadn’t seen yet, and probably the one I was the most familiar with on wax. The tickets were an easy purchase.

The venue was the WOW Hall, a surprisingly awesome place to house a show with the look and feel of a true DIY space. It was a fairly large room, nothing out of the ordinary for a concert hall, but with a very humble, community oriented vibe. The next day, while I was checking out an awesome record shop called House of Records, one of the dudes who worked there told me it had been a fixture of the scene forever, a place where the legendary Ramones had played. The more you know.

So, there were we. Checked in, relieved to find a beer and wine bar downstairs. We swilled IPAs and checked out the vests and watched from the screens as the local opener came on. It was loud, heavy, and reverberated through every wall in the house. With a couple quick chugs we left our drinks and went upstairs, curious as to what the local scene in Eugene had to offer.

And it is moments like this that make going to shows worth the sweat, smell, and claustrophobia. There’s no better way of discovering a new favorite band than being won over in the live setting. Broken Dead were the first opener, and they set the bar high early on. They played crust punk, the melodic variety not out of bounds for the likes of Tragedy or the Holy Mountain, but with a greater emphasis on classic hardcore and touches of the black metal that rears its head in some of Leftover Crack’s heavier tunes. Even cooler, is frontwoman Manda’s commanding presence, on both ax and vocals, impressing with her acidic screams and darkly melodic rhythm work. Broken Dead left me reeling with the excitement of discovery.

Not A Part of It, another Eugene local played next. They played a competent melodic punk, with boatloads of energy. Sort of Rancid-y, sort of Queers-y, but a bit harder edged with that classic 90s goofball intensity. At this point in the night, we were worried that the WOW Hall wasn’t going to fill up enough for a proper pit, because, even though we are often too old and tired to participate, a mosh pit, like a painting, is still a joy to look at. Each band brought a handful more, and slowly, the room was beginning to fill.

We were really there for Bad Cop/ Bad Cop, so we stayed close by for their set. The room filled up a bit more and to my surprise, punks were circle pitting with abandon to the Fat Wreck alums catchy anthems. There was still more than enough room to breathe, but Bad Cop/ Bad Cop sealed the gaps with their vocal and instrumental tightness, so much so, I can say with a decent amount of confidence that I’m not sure I’ve ever heard a band pull off harmonies as tight as theirs live. Besides their songwriting (and bassist Linh Le’s infectious stage moves), I was further endeared to the band by their palpable admiration for opener Broken Dead. On stage, they were incredibly complimentary, and to my delight a day later, I saw that it wasn’t just for show either. Facebook updates don’t lie, Broken Dead were added to the next two dates also. Cool stuff.

I managed to catch the last two songs of Starving Wolves’ set in Vegas, also opening for Leftover Crack. I was never really sure how to feel about them. Their recorded material is limited to a two song EP, and yet I keep seeing them on these big bills. A part of me thinks there’s some artificial push going on here, like there’s some sort of punk rock cabal that Starving Wolves is hooked up with that is trying to make them superstars or something. I don’t know. I can’t really be that negative beyond that, because they put on a raucous live show. They play a pretty melodic variety of street punk with a bunch of gang vocals. It all comes together in the live setting. Their hair is a silly exaggeration of everything punk rock, their frontman keeps making circles with his arms and reminding the crowd to circle pit; it’s goofy, but I couldn’t help but think it’s pretty earnest. Sometimes you gotta let go of your cool and just have a good time. Starving Wolves are an amazing live band, and punk cabal or not, they are worth seeing.

By the time Leftover Crack hit the stage, the WOW Hall was stuffed. Denim as far as the eye could see. This was when I started to reflect on Eugene as a whole, and decided that it was a pretty damn cool town. Not anywhere could support a scene like this. To see such an active group of participants at a punk rock show was sort of inspiring. I remember going to see shows in Spokane, a bigger PNW city, with a way lower turnout. I was in awe. And the unique feel the WOW Hall lent to it was of a real punk rock show. The people there, for better or worse, were punks, and they were there to let loose. Despite it being a pretty diverse show, there was a sense of danger too– not the sort of thing you expect to find (except from our most optimistic punks) at a major show with such household-name bands. I remember a moment in Leftover Crack’s set where a man stumbled out of the pit to the back of crowd, as soon as he cleared the mob, he collapsed with his hand in his head. Moments later, a throng of people carried him out of the building. I found myself reminded again and again, perhaps in comparison to seeing Nails the night before, that this was a punk rock show, and it was take no prisoners.

Leftover Crack’s set was a tense affair. It was where the night got weird, but no less fun. Stza was intoxicated, and super chatty, and not everyone seemed to enjoy this as much as I did. Some of the crowd got belligerent as the frontman told stories in between songs, chanting, “Shut the fuck up!” To his credit, he performed ably throughout the night, and heckled his hecklers right back, elongating his pause between songs with some mock tune-ups. The rest of the band took it all in good humour and stride. Brad Logan mused with Stza on whether or not he was “too nice,” and  bassist Alec Baillie wondered aloud if he even knew how to play any of their old songs, with some gentle ribbing from Stza. The overall impression was of a band of punk veterans who happen to be old friends.

They played a range of material, Choking Victim songs included, which were met with a frenzied pit. Despite the tension between audience and artist at points in the set, this was probably the most enthusiastic crowd I’ve seen them have. They amplified their show by destroying a Donald Trump pinata on stage and then throwing it into the crowd. Turns out the effigy was filled with condoms, which dispersed throughout the venue. Soon, people were blowing them up like balloons and bouncing them around the crowd. As the band played, fat, inflated dicks soared above our heads. I’ve never seen punk rock be as sublime as it was then.

A special shoutout deserves to go to Kate Coysh for her role in Leftover Crack’s live show. She might just have to be one of the best screamers I’ve ever heard. She has the type of voice to send chills down your spine, and whenever she was on stage, whether taking the lead or trading off lines with Stza like some sort of rap duo from hell, it was impossible not to be wowed by her talent.

The set was finished family style. Stza announced that they were not going to do an encore, that they were just going to keep playing instead of going through the pageantry. They brought on Starving Wolves for one song, and Bad Cop/ Bad Cop for another, tying together disparate threads of punk rock with a sense of community. They ended their set with perhaps their darkest banger, Fuck World Trade’s “Operation M.O.V.E.” The incredible Kate Coysh took lead vocal duties, grasping an invisible orange in the air (any metalhead’s birthright, I suppose) and finished the night off with a buzzing electricity. Of course, the same assholes who antagonized Stza earlier antagonized more, calling for an encore. To no one’s surprise, the band kept their promise– once they were off stage, they were off for good.

The crowd in the WOW Hall dispersed and soon we were back out on the street, going through the show point by point, conversation points blooming out of every detail we could remember. It was one of the better shows I’ve been to, and probably the best introduction to a new city that I could hope for.



Face To Face, The Vandals & more playing Punk Rock Bowling Denver

Punk Rock Bowling organizers have announced the annual punk festival will be returning to Denver in 2017. Bands featured in the first lineup announcement include Face To Face, The Vandals, Lawrence Arms, Street Dogs, and Teenage Bottlerocket, among others.

The 2017 edition of PRB Denver is set to take place June 2nd and 3rd at Summit Music Hall and Marquis Theater. Tickets go on sale Friday, April 14th. Head over here for more info.



Me First and the Gimme Gimmes streaming “Rake It In: The Greatestest Hits”

Everyone’s favorite punk cover band Me First And The Gimme Gimmes just released their new retrospective collection Rake It In: The Greatestest Hits, and you can give it a listen below.

The Gimmes will be touring North America and Europe very soon. Their latest studio album Are We Not Men? We Are Diva! was released in 2014.



Teenage Bottlerocket announce new covers album “Stealing the Covers”

Wyoming pop-punks Teenage Bottlerocket have announced they will be releasing a new covers album titled Stealing the Covers on July 14th through Fat Wreck Chords.

Instead of taking the typical approach to a covers record and covering classics by bands like Bad Religion, TBR decided to put their spin on tracks by lesser-known bands like The Mugwumps, The Scutches, and Varsity Weirdos.

Watch the band’s announcement below for more info.

Teenage Bottlerocket last released Tales from Wyoming in 2015 on Rise Records.



Direct Hit! debuts video for ‘Snickers or Reese’s’

Milwaukee pop punks Direct Hit! have dropped a video for their song ‘Snickers or Reese’s’. The band are doing so to celebrate the re-release of their magnificent album ‘Domesplitter’, out via Fat Wreck Chords on April 14th. You can still put your pre-order in here.

Catch the video for ‘Snickers or Reese’s’ along with some US tour dates below.