by GE 138
First off, that's some great cover artwork. Pete - you are the Man! Second off, this release is Fantastic! What an absolute gem of a record. Yes, I said record, because this is a 7" piece of vinyl that's too hot to handle with it's melts-in-your-mouth goodness. 3 songs that will aurally beat you senseless. Brutally guttural, raging Punk Rock/Hardcore ala Sheer Terror or Killing Time that just makes you wanna go out and destroy something beautiful, or begin a tri-state killing spree. This release is packed with disconcerting, cathartic vocal work from Dan and some majorly powerful guitar work from Pete that's just leviathan in nature. He plays riffs and melodies that border on the edge of Metal but stay true to the bands Punk roots. Pete's drum work, as always, is Ace with his complex lines and dexterous style of playing. That dude is an animal behind the kit. The guy who plays bass on here, Tyler, isn't even with the band anymore for whatever reason, but he does a commendable job on this release. He has to in order to keep up with everyone else in the band. This EP from Unfair Fight shows tremendous musical growth from their previous release, A Constant Struggle, with it's odd timings, razor sharp starts/stops, and insanely fast paced, impassioned musical delivery. Opening song In A Room Full Of Lunatics, with it's Are these just conspiracies? / The Future is Ours / We are the Dead chorus is sick as fuck. I love this song. 2nd song I'd Rather Be Skateboarding, is good too, but the lyrics sound really close to a song Dan wrote in another band before... can't recall what that band's name was though... heh heh And the song that takes up all of Side 2, I Fight Demons On The Regular, has long been a staple of the bands live set, and is nothing short of a musical masterpiece. The first 50 copies of this release came with limited edition pieces of artwork, each one created by each individual band member, that I'm sure are long gone by now, but since there's 4 members of the band, I'm wondering how they got the number 50 instead of 48. Whatever. Great tunes, great band, great slab o' vinyl. Consume immediately one of the Best releases to come out this year. Unfair Fight. Fuck yeah! Available from Crucial 45 Records.
Hey - remember David Bowie? Tommy James And The Shondells? T Rex? Yeah, I bet you do, and so does the enigmatic figure known as King Tuff, and on this, his 2nd release, he's definitely channeling all of those iconoclastic Glam icons into one giant musical Golem and adding his own Hipster flourishes and embellishments to it, in order to sell it to all the cool kids who hang out at Beauty Bars and other cool kid places like that all across the U.S.A.. Don't get me wrong - I like all of those aforementioned musical giants, but the way King Tuff just blatantly 'emulates' them is a bit of a shocker with it's ballsy brazenness. Is this what passes off as cutting edge music nowadays? A license to steal and a set of brass balls? Rehashed melodies and riffs and pompous overblown productions from the 70's? Booooooooo. It's an interesting mix of tunes on here though, that's for sure. You got some crazy fuzzed out mid paced rockers with monster guitar hooks in them that would make Mick Ronson stand up and take notice (Hit And Run, Anthem, Bad Bad Things), some downright dreamy vocal lullabies that just ooze elegance (Swamp Of Love), a monster Top 40 radio anthem (Alone And Stoned), catchy as fuck Pop songs (Baby Just Break) and then some quirky ass, I don't know what to call it songs that are an excellent comment on his eccentric musical taste and could of easily been pulled off of an early Carpenters release (Evergreen). I guess as a mindless excursion and melodic musical distraction this is pretty good. Original it's not but that's OK I guess. I don't really not like this, and I don't really like it. It's like cotton candy really. Sugary sweet in small doses, but too much will make ya a bit nauseous. Available from Sub Pop records if you can believe that. Yeah, that Sub Pop... heh
I hate digital box sets. The concept is preposterous, and is only a money making ploy used by scummy record labels to flog a dead cow for whatever little cash they can get out of it, and this one is no exception. Fuck you Tim Armstrong. This box set from Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros is pure shite. Comprised of all 3 albums the band ever put out, it's fluffed out and given an enhanced enticement to it by adding on b-sides and rarities for fan boys to drool over, as well as the widely available on bootleg Action Town Hall Fireman's Concert, filmed and recorded a month before Joe Strummer passed away and when his old partner in crime Mick Jones joined him on stage to play 3 classic Clash songs (Bankrobber/White Riot/London's Burning). Oh, how my heart beat with Joy at the possibility of that supposed Clash reunion that was just around the corner from happening... Le Sigh. Anyways, if you don't already have this stuff I guess this is a good place to get it all with one click of the mouse. I don't think anything has been remastered on this. The tracks on here sound the same as the ones on my CD's, and even after listening to all of this stuff again, I gotta say I still don't like it. Sure, it's all Worldly and Heartfelt and Soulful and whatever, but that didn't make it good, and very few tracks on here get played all the way through when they come up. Diggin' The New... Coma Girl... Redemption Song, All In A Day and that's about it! LOL The b-sides stuff is pretty hit and miss. It's basically comprised of live album tracks and live versions of cover songs, from bands like the Ramones (Blitzkrieg Bop), Dandy Livingstone (Rudi, A Message To You), Jimmy Cliff (The Harder They Come), Willi Williams (Armagideon Time) and, of course, Toots And The Maytals (Pressure Drop). The Fireman's Concert tacked on at the end is a good listen but not essential, and the 3 live Clash tracks as the encore only tease at what might have been. Look, Joe Strummer was my Hero, never a nicer man I've ever met and hung out with but someone has to tell the Emperor he has no clothes on and with this digital collection, I'm screaming it out loud from the tops of mountains for the world to hear. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros as a band did nothing for me, and neither did this collection. Old Music for Old People. Phooey. Available only from iTunes.