hahahahahahaha If there was ever a shittier choice of an opening song for a Punk Rock compilation, I have never heard it in all my miserable years on this wretched planet. Opening tracks of albums are supposed to grab you, reel you in, make you want to listen to the rest of the album to see what it offers. The first track on this latest compilation from Squidhat Records called Squidhat '77 is so embarrassing, so hackneyed, so ham handedly shitty, that I almost took the needle off the record and flung it against the wall, never to be played again, but cooler heads prevailed, and after suffering through The Heiz, who I guess are considered a Vegas band now, I finally got to the song I wanted to hear - The Civilians doing Thin Lizzy's Bad Reputation, and it sounded great - easily one of the best songs on this crappy compilation comprised of "Local" Las Vegas bands doing songs from the year 1977 for some reason or another. Nostalgia Sells. There are some incredibly amazeballz versions of songs from that year on here though, like The Psyatics version of Pigs by Pink Floyd. "Ha, ha, charade you are." Mind blowingly great. Been stuck in my head for days now. Same goes for New Cold War's version of The Chain by Fleetwood Mac. Holy Shit! is that a great version of that song - probably the best song on here. Easily. They did a better job with a Fleetwood Mac song than Judas Priest did, that's for sure!! Frank & Deans do a great job with ELO's Turn To Stone, and Unfair Fight do the most incredible cover version of Joy Division's Warsaw I've ever heard, although technically that song wasn't recorded until 1978, but what do I know, huh? LOL The Dirty Panties do a good version of the Talking Head's Psycho Killer, and The Civilians & Friends close out this double LP with a 1 take, non-rehearsed, spontaneous version of The Clash's 1977, which was only Trueland and I with 'The Wizard' John Brown on bass and Dirk Vermin doing vocals with a shitty faux British accent for some reason. Whatever. Everything else on here is just sad, uncomfortable, shameful cookie cutter versions of songs done better by the bands that originally did them in the first place. Ugh. Even the beautiful gold colored vinyl, gatefold cover, excellent artwork and packaging couldn't save this double LP release, which would of probably worked better as a 10" EP or double 45 release, which also would of been in line with the '77 theme. Oh well. As with most Squidhat Records compilations, this one is more 'miss' than 'hit', but it's worth the price of admission for the handful of songs on this compilation that are actually listenable. Seek out at your own risk.
Available from every band on this compilation at every gig they play. Just go up and ask them! This release is also available on beautiful gold colored vinyl and on a digital format directly from the Squidhat Records Bandcamp page, which you can go to by clicking here. Support Local Music... blah blah blah blah blah blah blah...
First off, Kudos! for being something different and outside of the norm of the usual "Punk Rock" crap that I get in the mail around here! ha ha ha Not exactly my cup of bone broth, but an interesting release nonetheless. I love the cover of this album. Reminds me of the Groovie Goolies 70's cartoon series. And the band's name is great too - Dr. Phobic & The Phobic-Tones. Bit wordy, but it works for me. Second off, again, Kudos! for having the balls to name your album after a Cage The Elephant album! LOL Now that's some chutzpah right there! ha ha Although they share a album title, the 2 bands couldn't be any further apart musically if you tried. Cage The Elephant is lame wimpy ass chick rock and Dr. Phobic & The Phobic-Tones are, well... Instrumental Horror Surf Rock? Sure, I'll go with that. I believe this project is an offshoot of sorts from the ol' Monster Zero band of yore, but I could be mistaken about that, and the first I ever heard of Dr. Phobic & The Phobic-Tones is when they appeared on that shitty Prince tribute compilation on Squidhat Records that came out awhile ago, but I won't hold that against them. ;) This is a pretty good release. There's some super catchy Surf Rock Punk Rock Spooky tunes on here - Tetraphobia, Metathesiophobia, Pithecophobia, just to name a few, I never bothered to look up what any of the titles mean, because I'm lazy, and it all got boring to me after a bit listening to it all. I think the songs would be sooooo much better with words, because the musicianship on display here is impressive - the Dick Dale inspired guitar work alone makes this worth seeking out, and the rhythm section isn't anything to sneeze at either, but with the huge revival right now in the whole Surf Rock sound (Thanks Ty Segall! lol), this release feels like a missed opportunity. It's too good not to be listened to by everyone, but as some Surf Rock Horror Punk Instrumental musical project, I think it's just gonna be dismissed or ignored or classified as background music, which is a shame, because it's really fucking good and deserves to be a bit more than just that. Phooey.
I assume that this is available from Dr. Phobic & The Phobic-Tones when they play gigs, but I don't know that they do that very often. This release is available directly from the band themselves, including digitally, on the Dr. Phobic & The Phobic-Tones Bandcamp page which you can go to by clicking here, and it's also available on iTunes (click here) CD Baby (click here), Spotify (click here), etc. etc. etc. "Like" the band on Facebook by clicking here.
I get sent stuff all the times from random bands and assorted PR places looking to break the "next big thing" by any means necessary. Usually I just give them a casual once over before throwing them away, but this cover caught my eye for some reason, and it's a pretty interesting release from a band from Italy called Skassapunka that's been around for awhile now. This CD, called Rudes Against, is the band's 3rd release and it's an interesting mix of 2 Tone Ska, Political Punk, Reggae, Pop, Oi!, all mixed up and tossed together like a musical fruit salad, full of sweet sugary goodness that gives you lots of energy to burn. All the songs on here are uptempo toe tapping ragers, crafted for crowd interaction with lots of slogany shouty vocal parts and singalong bits that are all in Italian, so I have no idea what they're shouting about, but it sounds like they mean it, and it sounds pretty good! ha ha They remind me A LOT of Gogol Bordello, mixed with Reel Big Fish and Rancid or some poseur shit like that, and whether that's a good thing or not I'll leave to you to decide. 2 songs on here are sung in English, We Want To Dance Ska and the title song Rudes Against, but it makes not a bit of difference. The artwork seems to scream ANTIFA like appearance / sentiments, but who knows? Although not my cup of tea, this release from Skassapunka is a great sounding, energetic, collection of tunes that can get the party rocking or lead the Revolution, depending on which way the wind is blowing at the time. Check it out if you're into the whole Ska / Gypsy /Anarcho Punk thing. You might like it.
Available from KOB Records by clicking here. Available digitally from Amazon by clicking here. "Like" the band on Facebook by clicking here. Follow the band on Instagram by clicking here.