Tuesday, 22 September 2020

Randy Smith selects his favourite protest songs from 2000 onwards (part 4)


  Rebel Time Records' Randy Smith selects another of his favourite recent political/protest songs... 

  THE FALLOUT - Talkin' Punk Rock Civil War

  The first time I saw The Fallout was at the release show for their 2004 CD "Turning Money Into Revolution." I was wearing an F.U.s t-shirt that featured a picture of Ronald Reagan holding a pistol, Clint Eastwood style. The F.U.s had courted a bit of controversy, via MRR, for their supposed patriotic lyrics. Personally, I viewed the lyrics as sarcastic, and, having had the band (in their Straw Dogs incarnation) stay at my place a couple of times and chatting about it all only served to confirm that.

  Anyways, I have a distinct memory of two members of the band eyeballing me and the shirt and laughing with each other. A little unnerving ... were they laughing at me or with me? Were they laughing at the shirt or at my expense? I still don't know. But, I'm very proud to have been able to work with ( and have some laughs with ) The Fallout over the past few years, having had a hand in releases on both Insurgence Records and Rebel Time Records.

  One reviewer noted: "These guys write catchy songs that are tailor made for you to shout along with. The music is powerful and aggressive but also fun to listen to. And that’s the way it ought to be. If a song is going to inspire people, it has to be inspiring. Songs like “Red Light Union” and “Raise Your Flag” will have you fired up to run through a brick wall for the cause! This is “street” punk in the truest sense of the term – music for the people that is relevant to what’s actually happening on our streets." From another reviwer: "The Fallout make you wanna get up, dance and then go and do nasty but well-deserved things to animal abusers / fascists / cops while happily humming one of their delightful ditties." For me personally, like Moral Crux, pretty much a perfect band.

  An important song for me personally and a song I come back to often. It serves somewhat as a 'daily affirmation - a 'positive reminder or statement that can be used to encourage and motivate yourself / myself.' I'm basically 60, and for 40 years my life has revolved, in great part, around punk rock, politics and 'action,' in its various forms. I'm getting old, I'm getting tired, my knees are shot, I'm getting really grumpy and at times its tempting to say 'fuck it' and go sit on the porch and rest on my laurels, spending my time looking back in introspection (or anger) remembering the good old days. But, songs like this ( and other songs on this album such as "Action Today" and "Another Way" ) put a little 'pep in my step'. I may not make it out to a lot of demos or actions these days, but, yep, goldarnit, there are still new and inspiring bands and songs that need to be heard, via Rebel Time Records and there is still a diaper load of old (and hopefully still inspirational) political documentation and history that needs to be preserved, scanned and uploaded via the Arm The Spirit and Dragonfly archives. The fact that I can do this work whilst ensconced in my Lazy Boy Recliner is just a plus ... 'take it easy, but take it' ...

  As singer / guitarist Byron noted: "A lot of punk is about making changes. Songs about political action and anarchy. But getting wasted at the Warped Tour isn’t going to bring about the revolution anytime soon. Chant-along working class hymns don’t create change. At most we’re bringing awareness to social issues. So this song is hopefully encouraging folks to get out there, get involved in their communities and start making the kinds of changes punk rockers are always singing about. Real changes are being made by real people everyday at union halls, the United Way, Canadian Blood Services, the Daily Bread Food Bank. The jocks who think it’s cool to slam the hardest on the dance floor just don’t get it, that’s not revolution.

  The song is written in talkin’ blues style like the old folk singers because Bob Dylan, the icon of all protest singers, is just as guilty of a lot of talk but little action. And The Fallout are no different either. We’re busy making music, booking shows and recording while trying not to go broke. We’ve played a lot of benefit shows, we’ve attended various protests, but have we affected any real change? It’s not about being cynical, but being honest about what it really means to be a punk."

  And: "It’s sometimes easy to think that music is a catalyst for change. This song is about being honest and accepting the fact that real change comes from people who take action. It’s about lifestyle choices that are in harmony with our communities. I participate in protests, I’m active in my trade union and I’m a regular blood donor. It’s about doing whatever you can do to impact your community in a positive way."

Please don't get excited cause I'm not keeping score
Of the chances you've blown and opportunities ignored
To help the ones you love and say you care for
While you talk righteously all about it

And it ain't getting better in fact it's getting worse
Poor are getting poorer the meek inheriting the earth
While here in the America's we're still giving birth
To the notion we're all created equal

Now I don't think you understand what you're fighting for
Our music, poetry and politics don't lead to a cure
We need more than talkin'' punk rock civil war

Please don't take me wrong, don't get pissed off
But the injustice and violence that you think you can stop
Continues everyday as we sing our protest songs

Talk without action produces no results
Self-gratifying lifestyles removing any doubt
The chimes of freedom have long wrung out
In a world where direct action counts

Monday, 21 September 2020

Randy Smith selects his favourite protest songs from 2000 onwards (part 3)


  Randy from Rebel Time Records continues selecting his favourite recent protest songs... 


  Frank Sinatra sings, masterfully, "regrets, I've had a few, but, then again, too few to mention." One of my big regrets is not having been able to see Streetlight Saints (https://www.facebook.com/streetlightsaintsyyc/) when they played a Sunday Slamfest in Hamilton in October 2019 as, alas, the band broke up shortly thereafter. To paraphrase Frank: "Just like a flame / Streetlight Saints burned brightly, then became / An empty smoke dream that has gone / Gone with the wind." That said, thankfully, I did see the band once, at The Casbah in Hamilton.

  In their own words, Streetlight Saints were: "melodic street punk from Calgary, Alberta Canada. Sing along pub rock anthems with a social conscience. (Providing) a positive voice for the underdogs, outcasts and down trodden in today's society."

  As far as I can tell, the band unleashed upon the world, at most, 7 songs. Each one is an instant classic, anchored by singer Pete's perfect pipes. Songs about bashing the fash, about Canada's residential schools and our treatment of First Nations, etc. I think my first exposure to the band was the video for the song "Our Common Struggle / Bash The Fash." An auspicious beginning to say the least!

  As one member of the band noted, in an interview with Porkpie E-Zine: "most working class bands share an ideology and a distaste for injustice and imbalance socially, politically and economically and that is something I can get behind. The stuff we write as a band means something to me, I like that we have some things of substance to say to people who are listening." And, "part of our mantra has always been about thinking for yourself, unity, doing the right thing, using your influence to create change, let's hope that rubs off on people."


  This was the band's first song on their first release; a split 7" with the amazing Reckless Upstarts that was released on Insurgence Records (as an aside, I was tickled pink to have Rebel Time Records described by a member of the band in the aforementioned interview as "Insurgence Record's more punk sister label") and it certainly seemed to me to be a harbinger of greatness to come. Thus it's importance. Just a humdinger of a tune. Passionate, political punk. On-point, meaningful and masterful musicianship and message. "More, please," I said to myself!

 With regards to this particular tune, the band writes:

  "We wrote this song prior to the Covid-19 outbreak as a response to the widening gap between the ruling class and the shrinking middle class. We've been provided with so many distractions in the form of the media and the entertainment industry that we lost track of what was really going on in the world.

  How much is enough? The ruling class making record profits yet still their hands are firmly in our pockets squeezing out the last bit of toothpaste from the working class's collective tube.

  The system is broken, it needs to be broken down and re-built if we're ever to experience true equality. The only vote that truly counts as democracy falls is with your wallet and your actions. Social media posts will not save the world. Status Quo?, no, we'll push forward.

  No war but the class war."

  So...I tip my hat and raise my glass to a band that burned briefly but brightly. Like Frank sang, "Thanks for the memory."

Rock together walk together heads are all held high
Our bond cannot be broken we'll be true until we die
Some people come, some people go
It's your line that we won't toe
Status quo no we'll push forward

Blind folded eyes can't see the disorder
We'll burn the corporations to the ground
Build upon the ashes fuck your petty rations
Blind folded eyes can't see the disorder

How much is too much where do you draw the line?
What's yours is yours yet you still want mine
A country that only cares about the upper class
Vote with your wallet and give them the brass

Blind folded eyes can't see the disorder
We'll burn the corporations to the ground
Build upon the ashes fuck your petty rations
Blind folded eyes can't see the disorder

Blind folded eyes can't see the disorder
We'll burn the corporations to the ground
Build upon the ashes fuck your petty rations
Blind folded eyes can't see the disorder

Sunday, 20 September 2020

Randy Smith selects his favourite protest songs from 2000 onwards (part 2)

  Randy from Rebel Times Records (https://rebeltimerecords.bandcamp.com/) continues chatting about his favourite political/protest songs released since 2000... 

Moral Crux - Revolution (Shouldn't Be So Hard)

  I've long been a fan of Moral Crux (https://www.facebook.com/moralcruxofficial/). Based out of Spokane, Washington, around since the '80s, poppy punk rock centered around singer James Farris's lefty social and political commentary. For me personally, pretty much a perfect band.

  One reviewer said of the band: "It was as if Generation X and the Canadian Subhumans had a head-on collision at The Ramones’ practice pad." Nicely put, and I'll add that Moral Crux is, for me, kind of, sort of, somewhat of a potent and perfect blend of two of my favourite bands: you get the politics of MDC (Millions of Dead Cops) and the pop-punk of MTX (Mr. T. Experience). An odd combination? Maybe, but, hey, both MDC and MTX played together at the Anarchist Unconvention in Toronto in 1988 (an evening of which I have, due to some over-indulgence, only a very hazy memory)!

  A political band for sure, but that's not to say James can't write a poppy love song / unrequited love song / break-up song. Just check out "Yesterday's Kisses","Get Outta My Brain,""Firing Squad," or their cover of "Teenage Kicks." Because, let's face it, while Buenaventura Durruti said that "we carry a new world here, in our hearts. That world is growing this minute, " sometimes those hearts get broken and those worlds are shattered." Need a 'hurtin' song'? Moral Crux may just have you covered.

  And, I'll just get a plug in for Rebel Time Records here and mention that both Moral Crux and The Fallout (new album out now on Rebel Time Records and Discos Machete ... 15 tracks of  partisan and unapologetically political agitp(r)op punk rock) cite The Queers as musical influences ...

  My first exposure to Moral Crux came when I picked up a copy of their 1993 release "...And Nothing But The Truth" at a record store on Queen Street in Toronto. What I thought would be my last exposure to Moral Crux came when I picked up 2003's "Pop Culture Assassins" which came out on Ben Weasel's Panic Button Records and which was distributed by Lookout Records.

  Between 1993 and 2003 Moral Crux released a veritable cornucopia of outstanding albums on various labels. And, well, sadly, that seemed to be it. Then, suddenly, and without a lot of hullabaloo, in 2015, the band released the "Revolution" 7" on Mooster Records. Considering it had been 12 long years since their last release, this was a very, very pleasant and unexpected surprise. Frankly, I was gob-smacked. The "Revolution" EP is 4 tracks of Moral Crux's perfect, timeless and catchy-as-heck political pop punk and the welcome return of a band whose music and message  continue to be, 30+ years into it, motivating and mobilizing.

  James was kind enough to write a few words about the origin of the song. Thanks so much James!

  "I was mowing the lawn and for decades I always was fascinated how we (the 99 percent) have the power if we can just unite on so many issues of fairness, decency that we all have in common. It just came to me in a simple, perhaps, juvenile sense of: revolution shouldn’t be so hard since we have the number of people in our favor. It was one of those organic moments that a lot of times a songwriter will toss the term / slogan away due to it sounding too simplistic. But, in this case I assumed it worked. Of course the Beatles song Revolution and many other songs in rock over the years dealing with said topic exist, granted ... kinda interesting the background vocal on ”Revolution shouldn’t be so hard” has an early Beatles feel. The bridge/breakdown has a Ramones style cop."

  And, while revolution may be hard, getting your hands on (or ears wrapped around) the sounds of revolution ain't. Literally as I'm writing this, I see, via FB that Moral Crux has added yet more material to their Moral Crux bandcamp page...

  In Moral Crux news, according to James, the band is looking for a label to re-release some of their vinyl and the band does have new material ready to be recorded! Yes!! Stay tuned!!

Revolution shouldn't be so hard
We've got the numbers and the cause at heart
Revolution shouldn't be so hard
Plutocrats without regard
Society's soul in disregard

Dignity a distant memory in a system that destroys
No concessions, true correctives - solidarity!

Corporate elites absent of care
They can steal but cannot share
Revolution shouldn't be so hard
They can destroy but cannot build
They can repress but cannot lead
Revolution shouldn't be so hard

Dignity a distant memory in a system that destroys
No concessions, true correctives - solidarity!

We live is a society not just an economy
Social justice is equality

Revolution shouldn't be so hard...

Randy Smith selects his favourite protest songs from 2000 onwards (part 1)


  Randy is the guy behind the Canadian independent music project Rebel Time Records. He's spent most of his life involved in political activism. He's also someone who goes above and beyond the call of duty when I ask him to contribute to this blog. The next 8 days I'm turning the blog over to him... 

Intro: Mick was kind enough/ brave enough to ask me to do another of my long-winded lists for this blog. Thanks Mick! Somewhat vaguely he asked me to do up a "top ten of your favourite political or protest songs (with maybe a few words as to why they're so important)?" I decided to narrow it down to songs from the 2000s, with the one rule being that I not include any Rebel Time Records releases ( a rule I immediately broke, because, well, fuck my rules). Basically, these are all songs that I continually come back to, songs that I never get tired of listening to. Thematically, these are simply songs of unity, inclusion, solidarity and struggle. And, rather than having to put up with me droning on endlessly and ad nauseum, I've, where possible / needed, enlisted the help of the songwriters themselves to explain what the songs are about. Thank you all! Of course, the views and opinions expressed below are those of the author / songwriters only.

Afterboltxebike - De Que Lado Estas?

I've oft been asked by people who don't know me very well: "Hey, what sports you into?" My stock response has been and always will be: "Politics is my sport." I mean, there are similarities, analogies and parallels for sure. You've got 'parties' and 'teams' and 'sides' you've got 'us' and 'them,'you've got 'winning' and 'losing,' you've got 'Super Tuesday' and 'Super Bowl.'
When asked "What sport is politics?," President Obamba said  "It’s probably most like football.” Because a lot of players. A lot of specialization. A lot of hitting.” A lot of attrition. But then every once in a while you’ll see an opening. You hit the line, you get one yard. You try a play, you get sacked, now it’s like third and 15. But every once in a while — you have to punt a lot — but every once in a while you’ll see a hole and then there’s open field.”

Sounds like some of the political 'campagains' I've been involved in over the years for sure!
"De Que Lado Estas?" by Afterboltxebike ("anti-capitalist, anti-fascist, anti-racist, and one hundred percent communist punk from Nuevo Leon, Mexico" ) asks the simple, yet essential and all-important question, ‘Which Side Are You On?’ or, to go with the sports analogy, "Which Team Are You On?" or "Who Are You Cheering For?" Are you on Team Proletariat or Team Oppressor? For Afterboltxebike, the answer (and the way / the path down the field) is clear,  you’re either with the bosses or with the oppressed and this band is on the side of the workers/the proletariat/the exploited. Afterboltxebike knows that class struggle is the motor of history. And, it is a struggle. Afterboltxebike knows that we're going to get sacked, we're going get hit and there will be attrition, but we'll keep aiming for that 'open field.'

Diego Armando, singer / guitarist says that "Afterbolxebike was born with the idea of using music as a medium to spread marxism, anti-capitalism and anti-fascism. "What Side Are You On?" was the first song I wrote. What I was looking for was a kind of declaration of our principles so that those who listened to us would know our political ideas and there would be no doubt about what kind of band we are. It’s also an invitation to question our own participation within society. We believe that the worker continues to be the revolutionary subject capable of transforming capitalism into a superior society in which we can overcome the relationship between the exploited worker and the exploiting employer. A simple question, what side are you on? It’s enough to be able to question and answer what we are doing in our life and in this society."

An important song and an important band for me because, like with Urban Vietcong, a chance internet encounter has led to an ongoing love affair. In 2016 I saw a video for this song on facebook and was immediately hooked. I got in touch with the band, via Diego, and the rest is history. Got the 8-song "No Pasaran" cassette under our belts and the 3-song "Marxist Agitiation" 7" on the way.

What attracted me to Afterboltxebike was, of course, the music, but especially the lyrics. Songs about waking up very early in the morning to go to a shitty job,songs about ETA and YPJ/YPG,songs about anti-fascism and anti-colonialism, and, especially, a song about reading (The song "Leer")!! How many bands have done a song about the importance of reading?? For me personally, literature/books/zines are very important and a big part of my life, so it was inspiring to hear the band sing: “Read to study/ Read to learn/ Read for liberation.” Go read a book!

What also impressed me (and is very important to me) is that Afterboltxebike “walks the talk." Diego not only produces a political punk zine and makes punk documentaries, but he (and, at the time) other members of the band were active in local left-wing political organizations and struggles. Like DOA said: “talk minus action equals zero.”

And, by the way, this week I managed to get 11 out of 15 winning teams picked in the National Football League pool I'm in at work ... not bad ...

No tengo duda estoy convencido
Que mis patrones son mis enemigos
No aspiro a ser como uno de ellos
Mi fuerza esta con los obreros

Las cadenas que te tienen atado
Están en tu cabeza, están en tus manos
Nuestra trinchera te está esperando

Nuestro camino está muy claro
Revolución del proletariado
Nuestro sendero está iluminado
Por los comunistas que han luchado

¿De qué lado estas?
¿Del patrón o del proletariado?

I have no doubt, I am convinced
That the bosses are my enemies
I do not aspire to be like one of them
My strength is with the workers

The chains that have you tied
They are in your head, they are in your hands
Our struggle is waiting for you
You are with the bosses or with the exploited ones
Our way is very clear
Revolution of the proletariat
Our path is illuminated
By the Communists who have fought
What side are you on?
Of the boss or the proletariat
What side are you on?

Saturday, 19 September 2020

The Cool Greenhouse - Alexa! (Guest Review By Billy Ouka)


  "Alexa play something decent"

  "It's better to be both loved and hated in equal measure than merely tolerated" is a comment I made in the Just Some Punk Songs chatroom as the listeners were giving their opinions on the new single by The Cool Greenhouse (https://www.facebook.com/thecoolgreenhouse/). A few people loved it, a few didn't. One pissed off for a smoke disappointed that once again I wasn't playing anything by Hawkwind!. But I'm a fan (otherwise I wouldn't have played it) and Billy Ouka rushed off to buy it so I asked him to write a few words of recommendation... 

  The Cool Greenhouse new single is great piece of simple DIY pop magic, coming after their highly acclaimed debut album, this new single is their best release yet, a simple beat and tune, two notes at most, with a deadpan monologue vocal delivery commenting upon the use of AI Alexa's role in our lives (not mine I might add).

  A solo project that has developed into a  five piece, they craft humorous repetitive pop-leaning gems that are as bizarre as they are brilliant. With live performances that have been received really well. There's so many influences in there but the two that stand out are Jonathan Richmond and the Modern Lovers and Attila the Stockbroker, not a bad mix. With articles in Maximum Rock n Roll and DIYMag, this is a band to watch out for, as our future becomes more dystopian The Cool Greenhouse will be a perfect soundtrack. 

  It's available on random colour vinyl or as a digital download : https://thecoolgreenhouse.bandcamp.com/album/alexa 

  This is Alexa!... 

Friday, 18 September 2020

Helen Love - Songs From My Teens (PUNK AS F**K)


  For almost 30 years now, Welsh band Helen Love have been mixing up punk rock, indie, disco, pop and a love of Joey Ramone to create some of the catchiest music you'll ever hear. They recently returned with a rather splendid double A sided single on Alcopop! Records. 

  On one side is another of their many Ramones love fests, it's titled 1234 Dee Dee Ramone and it's a jump up and down with a big grin on your face slice of pure bubblegum joy. You can check out the video here :  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yfoPacEDIX0

  The flip side, in my opinion is even better and comes with 2 videos. There's the 90's version (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9-SfO1AGyg) which takes us down memory lane via the likes of Pulp, Ash, Gorky's Zygotic Mynci, Atari Teenage Riot, Stereolab, Kenickie, Heavenly etc and there's also the punk as F**k version in which Helen demonstrates how her 70's & 80's record collection is every bit as vital as her 90's one (Buzzcocks, Adverts, Young Marble Giants, Undertones, X Ray Spex, Blondie, Altered Images to name a few).  

  This is Songs From My Teens...

Thursday, 17 September 2020

Dartgun And The Vignettes - The Church Of Monday Night Football


  Today's song isn't a new release, the video you'll see below is a couple of years old, but it was on a recent compilation album and it is bloody good so it's getting posted. 

  Dartgun were formed in 2004 in Portland, Oregon, by Chuck Thrust (lead vocals/rhythm guitar/bari sax) and had their sound augmented 3 years later by the introduction of backing vocalists The Vignettes. They style themselves a "psychedelic punk rock doo-wop group" though I have to confess I only came across them recently and have only thus far heard a handful of tracks. I have discovered that they look to be lots of fun with the track I'm featuring today managing to make me think simultaneously of both The B-52's and The Dead Kennedys. 

  Aside from vocalist Chuck, the band also features Chad Dit It (bass), Bob Fountain (keyboard), Andrew Scanlan (lead guitar), Nathan Thorsen plus The Vignettes; Kat Aklysm & Christine (fellow Vignette Dana Thompson who features on this song sadly passed away last year).  

  Volume Bomb The Cops is a new charity compilation album featuring some very cool bands such as Millions Of Dead Cops, Dead Kennedys,  D.O.A. etc that... "was born from our individual experiences and our frustration with the status quo around police power and use of deadly force, specifically pertaining to people of color; as well as the utter lack of oversight or repercussions for officers who murder people in the street. Now, with riots in our cities, and protesters of all stripes being beaten down, shot, gassed and maced, the timing for this record has never been more relevant." ALL PROCEEDS from the record will be donated to "Don't Shoot PDX", a Portland based community non-profit working to increase civic participation and social change to create racial equity and equality. You can find it here :  https://volumebomb.bandcamp.com/album/volume-bomb-the-cops 
  This was the song that stood out for me, it's "a rock n roll fueled surfed up doo-wop battle cry" and it's called The Church Of Monday Night Football... 

Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Surfbort - Silly D


  Surfbort (https://www.facebook.com/surf666bort/) make a welcome return to Just Some Punk Songs today with the video for their new single. Despite not being able to gig, they've been keeping as busy as possibly during the pandemic, releasing the Apocalypse Care Package Demos ep (which I covered here : https://justsomepunksongs.blogspot.com/2020/05/surfbort-bubble-girl.html) and vocalist Dani Miller has been posting regular Talking With Dani videos which are pretty entertaining. 

  Now there's Silly D. It's a swirling, arty dreamscape that reminds me a little of Sonic Youth or even of the recent music released by The Lovely Eggs.  You can find it here :  https://surfbort.bandcamp.com/track/silly-d

  Silly D...

when you close your eyes
and wake up inside your silly dream

you see me
and i'm standing there on the corner
open up my mouth
and start to scream

we should be wasted by now x4

when we walk around in your downtown
wearing a frown
you remember that one day
you took a picture
I was a clown

we should be wasted by now x 3
we should be wasted on love lovie dove x2
we should be wasted on love

everyday all day even on a monday
nothing's gonna be okay

everyday all day even on a friday
find a new thing to hate

everyday all day even on a sunday
everything's gonna be ok

everyday all day even on a wednesday
nothin's gonna be ok
everyday all day even on a tuesday
find a new thing to hate

Tuesday, 15 September 2020

Daiei Spray - I Don't Care


  Daiei Spray (https://www.facebook.com/DAIEISPRAY/) are a melodic punk band who formed in 2004 in Hirosaki, a city on the Japanese island of Honshu and who are now based in Tokyo. I've seen plenty of comparisons being bandied around with the likes of HDQ, Dag Nasty, Husker Du, Naked Raygun etc. They released debut album, Isn't Brazing in 2017 (https://serialbowlrecords.bandcamp.com/album/daiei-spray-isnt-brazing) and have recently followed it up with another winner in the form of Behind The Wall.

  Named after a Japanese brand of strong hairspray which is popular with the local punk community, the band line up with Kazuki Yagihashi (vocals), Kyosuki Shibata (guitar), Yota Onodera (bass) and Akira Saitou (drums). The new album was originally released in March by local label Debauch Mood and has recently been given a UK release via hot Sunderland diy outlet Serial Bowl Records. It's available on 12' vinyl (which comes with a free CD though as of writing there was only 1 copy left so you're probably out of luck now), CD and digital download. You can get it here :  https://serialbowlrecords.bandcamp.com/album/behind-the-wall 

  I played single, Shame On You, on a recent Just Some Punk Songs show (the video for it is here :  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5018YT6TrVQ) so I'll shine the spotlight on a different song today. This is I Don't Care...  

Monday, 14 September 2020

Night Birds - Assault


  I'm sure you all know and love New Jersey 5 piece Night Birds (https://www.facebook.com/NGHTBRDS/), the hardcore punk band that features Joe Keller (Bass), Brian Gorsegner (Vocals), PJ Russo (Guitar), Darick Sater (Drums) & Mike Hunchback (Guitar). You probably also know they've just released a new compilation album called Fresh Kills Vol. II. It's a follow up to their first singles collection which was released in 2011 and this time around we're treated to tracks from the 2013 "Maimed for the Masses" EP, 2014 "Monster Surf" instrumental EP, 2016 "Who Killed Mike Hunchback?" demo EP, as well as various covers by the Effigies, Big Boys and GG Allin & the Jabbers, some never before released. Needless to say it's essential listening, it's mastered by Stephen Egerton (Descendents/All) and sounds great so check it out :    https://night-birds.bandcamp.com/album/fresh-kills-vol-ii Initial proceeds from the comp will go towards Common variable immune deficiency (CVID) research. 

  With a band this good, you could pretty much pick out any of the songs to highlight below so I'm going with one of the new ones. This is a cover of a song by Texan punks Big Boys that featured on their 1983 album Lullabies Help The Brain Grow. It's fast, loud and like the best hardcore songs it's completely flab free. It's called Assault... 

I'm walking down the street
And everywhere I go
Fools are always yelling
They won't leave me alone
You think you've got a right
To scream and yell at me?
You never realize that
What you do is wrong
Common sense tells you to
Mind your own business
You go out of your way
To cause a scene
Why do they say the U.S.A. is
The land of the free?
Don't tell me that my freedom
Is just another dream

Sunday, 13 September 2020

Mitraille - Cancelled


  Mitraille (https://www.facebook.com/mitrailleband/) are a 3 piece garage punk band from Belgium featuring a line up of Liam Verherstraeten (drums), Mathias Roggeman (guitar/vocals) and Dennis Van Hoof (bass/vocals). They released a debut ep in 2018 titled Schroot, followed it up a year later with Hoopschroot and have just returned with ep number 3, Schroothoofd. The vinyl is available to pre order and is due out soon but for now you can get the digital version "name your price" here :   https://ronnyrex.bandcamp.com/album/schroothoofd 

  There's 5 tracks on the ep, the energy levels are high throughout and I'm not really going out on a limb by guessing they'd be great in a live setting (and happily they've just managed to get back out on the road for the first time since February, appearing in Retie yesterday at the sold out Dorserfest 2020). 

  The song that I'm highlighting today deals with the recent difficult times of no gigs, no socialising, no holidays etc. It's the sound of a band having to deal with the frustrations and paranoia brought on by enforced isolation. It also asks us to take this opportunity to think about what our leaders value most, our well being or lining their own kind's pockets. It's a great summation of 2020 and also a great song. I'll be playing it on the Just Some Punk Songs show later today so tune in at 8pm UK Time (https://www.facebook.com/events/328858401765623/

  It's called Cancelled... 

Looking forward to playing a show CANCELLED Holiday trip, you really wanna go CANCELLED Meet your friends for a drink CANCELLED So you really need to see your shrink, well that’s CANCELLED I no longer trust anybody The world consumed by paranoia I just don’t understand it CANCELLED So you wanna go out after dark CANCELLED Sit on a bench in the park CANCELLED Interview for your dream job CANCELLED You drink to much but you’re really gonna stop, well that’s CANCELLED Are you worried about the police state? Toilet paper or your mortgage rate? Isolation, frustration, sanitation Solo’s cancelled! It’s a new decade. The twenties skipped the roaring part and went straight for the stock market crash this time around. And you can keep clapping, hanging white sheets out your window and call every service worker a hero. But please remember this newfound sense of solidarity next time you’re in the voting booth. Millionaire minority destroying social security. Do you care about your health? Or do you care about your wealth? Either way, please stop putting people in charge who don’t give a fuck if people like you or me deserve a living wage. Or simply not to die. CANCELLED CANCELLED

Saturday, 12 September 2020

Satanic Togas - Terminator 2


  You may remember that last month I posted a song by Sydney lo-fi garage punks Satanic Togas (https://www.facebook.com/thesatanictogas666/), it was taken from their Underworld Cassingle Club ep and I mentioned that there was an album on the way. 

  That album is now with us and it's every bit as good as expected. It's titled X-Ray Vision, boasts a dozen cool as fuck trashy budget rockers and it's available on several of the best labels and distros around;  Warttmann Inc.(Aus), Goodbye Boozy (Europe), Slovenly Recordings, Total Punk/Floridas Dying & Goner Records (USA). The vinyl version of the album looks to be available in a few weeks and seems pretty limited so get in early if you want one. If you want the digital version then go here (if cassettes are your thing there's 33 available on puke pink) :  https://warttmanninc.bandcamp.com/album/x-ray-vision-lp 

  Ploughing a similar furrow to other lo-fi heroes such as Buck Biloxi and Kool & The Gang Bangers, this is very impressive. You don't need a big budget, lots of flashy equipment and a name producer to make great music. You just need to go for it and hopefully you can produce something as good as X-Ray Vision. 

  The album is packed with "hits" but the song I'm featuring today is the closing track. It's about the last days of man, the machines are marching on and maybe we need a muscle bound Austrian to save us. It's called Terminator 2...  

Thursday, 10 September 2020

Trash Knife - Ovary Concern


  Trash Knife (https://www.facebook.com/trashknife/) are Lauren (vocals), Steve (guitar), Sean (guitar), Leora (bass) & Mat (drums). They're a hardcore punk band from Philadelphia who I said reminded me a little of Neighborhood Brats and Trampoline Team when I featured a song from their excellent EP/EP collection earlier this year https://justsomepunksongs.blogspot.com/2020/03/trash-knife-i-need.html. Collecting together the tracks from their first 2 eps and throwing in an unreleased track it's one of 2020's best releases https://fdhrecords.bandcamp.com/album/ep-ep

  They're back today with a new track to tide us over whilst they're busy working on a new album. It was recorded last year at temple of the dog and it reminds us what a powerhouse the band are. Sounding as though they've been transported from a sweat drenched 80's fleapit venue, the band crash and bang with gleeful delight whilst Lauren spits and screams and hollers about not being a baby maker or an incubator. It's a song that whizzes by and seems to finish almost as soon as it's begun but it does the job of making us hope the album isn't too much of a distant proposition. You can snap it up name your price here :  https://trashknife.bandcamp.com/track/ovary-concern

  This is Ovary Concern...

Wednesday, 9 September 2020

Shrinkwrap Killers - It's Not A Dead Body Inside This Bag


  Shrinkwrap Killers are from Oakland and are the latest outlet to channel the talents of Earhammer Studio boss and Brainoil frontman Greg Wilkinson. They featured on here back in March with one of the year's best songs : https://justsomepunksongs.blogspot.com/2020/03/shrinkwrap-killers-stolen-electronics.html

  As well as that track, March also saw the release on Rockstar Records of the vinyl version (the cassette version came out in 2019) of a debut album titled Parents + FBI = Cahoots! You can grab it here :  https://punkorder.com/items/music/lp/shrinkwrap-killers-parents-_-fbi-_-cahoots

 Today I'm posting the lead track from a split 7" with Santa Cruz band Cosmic Reef Temple. There's 300 copies on black and 200 on semi transparent blue and it's available from Wave Guardian Records https://shrinkwrapkillers.bandcamp.com/album/split-w-cosmic-reef-temple


  A humorous warning to morgue attendants everywhere, this is a synth heavy post punk delight that will probably remind you of The Spits. It's called It's Not A Dead Body Inside This Bag...

It’s Not a dead body inside this bag.
He just blacked out last night. Unzip the bag and get this fool out of here. This morgue doesn’t process live humans. Please check for a pulse next time. It’s not a dead body inside this bag.

Tuesday, 8 September 2020

Private Function - Irresponsible Dog Owner (I'm An) (Guest Review by Billy Ouka)

  Billy Ouka returns today to sing the praises of one of the best albums of the year. It's the latest offering from Melbourne's Private Function (https://www.facebook.com/privatefunctionmelbourne/),  their first album released through their new label deal with Damaged / Caroline Australia.

  It's not only Billy who's impressed, the band have been snowed under with gushing praise from critics worldwide including major players such as Rolling Stone, NME & Hysteria Magazine. It's also managed to top the vinyl charts so you've probably already heard it but just in case, here's Billy...

  It can be difficult sometimes to keep up with the amount of exciting new bands coming out of Australia, but Private Function should be top of the list. A perfect blend of highly catchy tunes, delivered at a breakneck speed, combining humour in the lyrics, to highlight the serious issues directly affecting them. So after a number of cracking releases the new album was highly anticipated. Whose Line Is It Anyway does not disappoint, 13 blistering tracks, each one as good as the next, from the first track, "I don't Want To make Out With You" to the final "Grabbing My Butt" it's a rock n roll classic. "Evie pt 4" a collaboration with Jade, vocalist from DickLord, mixing it up before the final barrage to the end, as it should be. Private Function would be the biggest band on the planet if there was any justice, an album that everyone needs to hear. You can get it on black or white vinyl, cassette & cd here :   https://artistfirst.com.au/collections/private-function

  If digital is your thing go here : https://privatefunction.bandcamp.com/album/whose-line-is-it-anyway

  To give you an idea of how powerful the band are, can I recommend you check out this live video for the album's opening track, I don't wanna make out with you : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGjcBm4EhYY

  As for my favourite song, it keeps changing. Yesterday I was going to select Give War A Chance, tomorrow I'll no doubt be wishing I'd opted for something else but right now, I'm going with Irresponsible Dog Owner (I'm An)... 

Monday, 7 September 2020

DORK - I Hate The North Pole

  "hi im a dork i had five minutes to record drums and this is what i made!"

  So whoever DORK is, he's a quick worker. He's also from Australia and claims love songs are against his religion. And if you believe the opening track on his BBQ ep his sister is a blister. And aside from that I know no more.

  But I like the ep. It's 3 tracks in fractionally over 2 minutes. It's egg punk (and there's plenty of that about at the moment, much of it courtesy of Melbourne native Billiam). It's whacked out lo-fi hardcore punk. It's bloody good fun.

  You can find the ep as a name your price download here :

  This is the "hit" from the ep. It's basically a drum kit being bashed frantically whilst a madman shouts unintelligible gibberish about snow and stuff. It might divide opinion amongst regular visitors but I like it a lot. It's called I Hate The North Pole...

Sunday, 6 September 2020

All Ashore! - 17 Again

  Whenever I'm asked what my favourite ever songs are, my obvious choices are punk songs. Not all of them are though as I usually include Talulah Gosh in there (case in point is the Top 10 I chose on my birthday 6 years ago https://justsomepunksongs.blogspot.com/2014/11/its-my-birthday-so-today-you-get-my-top.html). Along with the likes of The Wedding Present, early My Bloody Valentine, Girls At Our Best etc they're the kind of punk influenced indie bands that have provided much enjoyment down the years. I do like that kind of indie music but either I've not been paying enough attention or it's not been as much in evidence in recent years. And then BOOM! A song that makes me think it's 1986 again. One that would have been a firm favourite back then and is one now.

  All Ashore are new to me. I know very little about them but it appears as though they're from Sheffield, are ex members of Sheffield bands such as Velodrome 2000, Plouf! and Parallelograms and they "recapture the breathless rush of fuzzy jangly lo-fi pop like Shop Assistants, Talulah Gosh and 14 Iced Bears." Other influences include Ramones, Helen Love, Television Personalities, Moldy Peaches, Buzzcocks and Bearsuit.

  They've an album on the way from Cardiff label Daytrip Records. Titled Stayin' Afloat, it's produced by Alan Smyth (who's worked with the likes of Pulp, Arctic Monkeys and The Long Blondes) and it'll be available in November on vinyl and digital download :   https://daytriprecords.bandcamp.com/album/stayin-afloat

  There's a couple of tracks already streaming, Radio Sunshine is an upbeat tambourine led shimmy shimmy delight but the real winner is the song that name checks the aforementioned Talulah Gosh. It's one for grown up twee kids everywhere. Back in the day this kind of song was gracing cassettes in the NME, now it's getting the fanboy treatment on your favourite blogs. It's called 17 Again...

TV Face - Work Hard Have Fun (Review By Jamie Bay)

  Thanks today to Jamie Bay, host of the Not The Punk Rock show (https://www.mixcloud.com/LesMIs/) for taking the time to recommend a band from the city of my birth... 

  The band called TV FACE (https://www.facebook.com/tvfaceband/) are a trio from Lancaster consisting of Brigital McWade (bass/vocals), Neil Parker (Drums) and Steve McWade (Guitar/Vocals).

  The band called TV FACE embarked on a project to release a single on the last Friday of every month during 2020. All tracks were recorded and produced by the band, in a variety of locations, including cellars, bedrooms and cupboards under the stairs.

  This has led to the Band called TV FACE producing two limited edition CDs of these releases. Their first "Like Dominoes" EP was released in April. The second collection of songs has just been released as the "Work Hard, Have Fun" ep (both available from the band called TV FACE). A gorgeous DIY package containing lovingly screen printed art inserts in an agit-prop/situationist style.

  Musically firmly in the post-punk camp, angular and rhythmic with occasional pop sensibilities in the vocal harmonies......you know catchy.  We thoroughly recommend this band here at Not The Punk Rock Show to the point we've played everything they've put out so far at least once. It's music that makes you feel good and shows what can be done despite the current situation.

  It's available on cd and as a digital download :

  They have a further four tracks to come out which will be released as an EP in December, in the meantime take time to check out the Work Hard Play Hard EP by the band called TV FACE.

  This is the title track, Work Hard Have Fun...

Out of bed, sick pig, lazy Are we dumb robots, man? Choppy seas, vomit on the shop floor Weary bones, raving mad There is no love In this place Only time Work hard, have fun Journeyman! numbers start to bite you Three, six, oh! you’ll just wait Seconds lost, water down a river Targeted for time-related waste There is no love In this place Only time Work hard, have fun You serve syrup with your fake history

Saturday, 5 September 2020

XYLITOL - I Want a Refund

  Hold on to your hats guys, today's song is pretty damn lively.

  Xylitol is a naturally occurring alcohol found in most plant material, including many fruits and vegetables. It's widely used as a sugar substitute and in "sugar-free" chewing gums, mints, and other candies. Supposedly it can also give you bloating and diarrhea and it's very toxic to dogs.

  XYLITOL are also a totally awesome hardcore punk band from Olympia who've previously featured on here with a track from their 2017 ep Is Toxic To Pigs??  https://xylitolband.bandcamp.com/album/is-toxic-to-pigs and their blistering cover of The Jerks' 1977 classic Get Your Woofin' Dog Off Me https://xylitolband.bandcamp.com/track/get-your-woofin-dog-off-me-the-jerks

  They return today with a track from their new ep "I’m Pretty Sure I Would Know If Reality Were Fundamentally Different Than I Perceived It To Be" which is out now on Thrilling Living Records (and what a great year that label's having with releases by CB Radio Gorgeous, Sniffany & The Nits and Special Interest bolstering an already impressive back catalogue)  https://www.thrillingliving.com/.

  The ep boasts 6 shouty blitzkrieg blasts of frantic pogo punk in which the energy never flags and which I'm guessing has left "singer" Laura with shredded vocal chords! Whether she's shouting about her plans to cork up the volcano, plug up the black holes and caulk up all the faultlines or just screaming that she's a crazy frog, she's an unharnessed power of nature that will blow you away. All proceeds go to Black Fem Defense, a Baltimore-based organization that makes self-defense tools and training accessible to Black queer youth. It's available on ltd edition vinyl and digital download :  https://thrillingliving.bandcamp.com/album/i-m-pretty-sure-i-would-know-if-reality-were-fundamentally-different-than-i-perceived-it-to-be-ep

  The entire ep is a highlight but the song I'm posting today is the one that tells us the world is shit. It's titled I Want A Refund...