Today Philadelphia-based punk band The Menzingers share the music video for the song “Strangers Forever,” a track off the band’s forthcoming record Hello Exile out October 4 via Epitaph. The track is a searing tribute to parting ways, backing their spiky guitars with brilliantly barbed lyrics. “Lyrically, the song is inspired by Leo Tolstoy’s classic novel, ‘Anna Karenina’. In it, the character Darya Alexandrovna learns of her husband’s infidelity and declares: ‘Even if we remain in the same house, we are strangers — strangers forever!’” explains vocalist Greg Barnett. “The idea of becoming a stranger to someone you so intimately know stuck with me and became the overarching narrative to this song.”
New Jersey-based post-emo outfit, Misery Loves Company, has released a brand new single, “Sad Song.” The track follows the band’s previous releases, their debut EP Love Notes and Highways in 2017 and single “Dead Inside” in late 2018. “Sad Song” and the accompanying stream video can be watched on the Revival Recordings YouTube page.
It’s certainly a good morning knowing that there is a new Omnigone song for everyone to enjoy.
As announced a few weeks back, Omnigone is a new ska-punk project helmed by Adam Davis (Link 80/Desa) that picks up where Link 80 left off. Davis collaborates with a rotating cast of musicians from bands such as: Rx Bandits, Link 80, We are the Union, Kitty Kat Fan Club, Ogikubo Station, and more! Their debut LP, No Faith, releases on September 13th via Bad Time Records. Today, you can stream “Rather Be Alone” on Rebel Noise. The track steps outside of the ska-punk realm in favor of a more traditional ska groove and features former Rx Bandits member, Steve Borth, on sax & keys.
9/13 @ 924 Gilman – Berkeley, CA w/ Dan P. (Mu330) and Kill Lincoln
Omnigone may be a new name in the East Bay CA ska punk scene, but they’re certainly no strangers to the genre. Twenty years ago Adam Davis joined Link 80, a band that seamlessly combined ska rhythms with aggressive and politically charged hardcore punk, leaving a legacy and a sound that would change the meaning of “ska punk” indefinitely. While Link 80 is no more, Adam (Guitar/Vocals) has picked up the torch and is lighting the way with Omnigone. Joined by Barry Krippene (Link 80/Blast Bandits) and a rotating cast of players including: Brent Friedman (We Are The Union), Steve Borth (Rx Bandits / Link 80), Justin Amans (Kitty Kat Fan Club/Ogikubo Station), Jeremy Hunter (Skatune Network/We Are The Union), Bootie Pook (Beat the Red Light), Aaron Carnes (Flat Planet) & Reece Noble, Omnigone recorded thirteen tracks that make up their debut full length No Faith. No Faith hits you quick band doesn’t let up, weaving aggressive anthems across genres to make up a fun, intense, but ultimately dynamic record. Whether you’re a fan of hardcore, punk, or ska there is something for everyone on this promising debut.
Release Date: September 13th, 2019
Label: Bad Time Records
Currently rocking to the crushing rhythms of Real Tree Camo, the new album by Cleveland hardcore quartet, RAM ONES. (The band name is comedy gold, btw.)
This brief bit of skullcrushamania brings about 10 tracks of what I would consider 90s style Hardcore. Reminiscent of early Jughead’s Revenge and mid-career M.O.D.
The guitar work vacillates between rapid and plodding with equal verve. Rhythm is rock solid, and the vocals, though gritty, are still intelligible. The tracks are brief. In essence, it checks all the boxes.
In the words of Billy Milano, Short, but sweet!
Check ‘em out on their Bandcamp page.
OFF WITH THEIR HEADS ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM ‘BE GOOD’ OUT AUGUST 16
SHARE VIDEO FOR NEW TRACK “DISAPPEAR”
DIRECTED BY JONAH RAY AND FEATURING COMEDIAN KYLE KINANE
Off With Their
Heads announce details on their forthcoming album Be Good, set for
release on August 16. The band has shared video for the track
“Disappear,” directed by Jonah Ray and featuring comedian Kyle Kinane. Watch the video for “Disappear” now.
“All the other records were about moping around and feeling sorry for yourself,” says frontman Ryan Young. “This one is less about feeling sorry for yourself and more about accepting how goddamn miserable you are.”
Young and the band members—bassist Robbie Smartwood, guitarist John Polydoros, and new drummer Kyle Manning—holed up at The Hideaway in Minneapolis with additional recording at Pachyderm Studios, a mid-century mansion where Nirvana recorded In Utero, to make Be Good. Young produced the record himself, and it was the first time he enjoyed the process, or at least tolerated it. “I don’t like how the old records sound, and I hate recording so much,” he says. “You could just hear all the dumb shit on them where I was like, whatever, just let it go, I want to get out of here.”
Forced acceptance is a big theme of Be Good, though it’s a hard-learned one, often emerging in the form of primal screams in the band’s trademark style of gruff-punk. “Hands up to the sky and shout at the top of your lungs, ‘til the floor falls out!” Young yells on the title track, sounding somewhere between motivational speaker and hard-nosed therapist.
Much of the self-deprecation that defined the band’s previous work has been adjusted. It was the years spent out of the van, developing a life at home in Chicago, that gave Young his newfound, slightly more positive perspective. “Not being on the road 250 days a year, actually trying to develop some sort of life outside of playing shows and drinking, you’d be surprised what that does,” he says.
If ever there was a time for Ryan Young’s distinct brand on cautious optimism, it’s now. “The title is an answer to that question of what you’re supposed to do now that the world is so awful and the climate of this stupid country is so shitty,” he says. “Be good, be loud—that’s sometimes all you can do, I guess, as cheesy as that sounds.”
Be Good Track Listing
1. Disappear – 3:15
2. Be Good – 3:32
3. You Will Die – 3:11
4. No Love – 2:53
5. Take Me Away – 4:07
6. Tear Me Apart – 2:35
7. Trash It – 3:31
8. Let It All – 2:18
9. Severe Errand – 2:53
10. Locking Eyes – 4:51
11. Death – 2:49
DIY Punk is alive and well in Anacortes, Washington. For the unaware, Anacortes is a small town in Northwest Washington State, damn near up to the Canadian border. It’s great to hear tunes coming out of small town USA. As testament to this, I’m listening to “All-American” the debut full-length by BUFFET.
The album is all all jagged edges and garage spirit. 14 tracks of rock and roll energy. While the sound is familiar, it’s also refreshingly new. The intro track, “Land” has a lot of the same vibe as “Possessed” by Suicidal. The band professes to be influenced by Circle Jerks and Descendents, and I can totally hear that.
The tunes progress rapidly, ADD fashion. The bulk of the songs clock in under the 2 minute mark. It’s important. There’s a lot of shit going on. No one needs to be weighed down by the burden of epic ballads, unless they choose that. Viva short songs!
There is a small selection of the songs that slow down the pace and pick up the emotion. Track 6, “Throne” is the pinnacle of this. It works well as a point to catch your breath. After that it’s back into the full swing.
The structures are simple and repetitive, great for driving home the point. The notes claim the album was recorded “live” at Anacortes Unknown. I take this to mean it was recorded as the full band, at once. This is as opposed to individual multi-tracks. If this isn’t the case, damn there must not have been a single person at that show.
Personal favorite is track 8, “4 Brides For 4 Guys”. It’s short and sweet. Autobiographical, perhaps, or maybe just wishful thinking.
Nevertheless, if you like punk rock, check this out: https://buffet.bandcamp.com/
Support these lads:
Dick Turner: Vocals
Nick Rennis: Guitar
John Van Deusen: Bass
Braydn Kreuger: Drums
1. Land 00:57
2. Too Many Things 01:50
3. Victim 01:01
4. IDKU 00:59
5. Big Bomb 01:27
6. Throne 04:01
7. My Favorite Things 01:35
8. 4 Brides For 4 Guys 00:49
9. DoHo 01:31
10. I Like To Shop 02:15
11. Family Dinner 05:41
12. NY Slice 01:30
13. All-American 03:44
14. That’s What Dick Says 02:14
Full speed ahead!
Frenzied fast paced, metallic punk rock from Toronto.
Illusion of Choice is the new album from The New Enemy. I’ll admit to not being at all familiar with the band, prior to listening right now, but I’m full on rocking to what I’m listening to right now.
The eight tracks (five original, three covers) are chock to the freakin’ brim with crushing riffs, call and response vocals, staccato breakdowns, and an overall sense of urgency.
The tracks are short and sweet, with most songs clocking in just barely under the two minute mark. Right in the sweet spot for hardcore punk. To that end, while firmly in the vein of hardcore punk ala Agnostic Front, H20, and Snapcase, (the final track, “Ambition Now” being a cover of the aforementioned.) there is no shortage of thrash metal on this release. It channels the spirit of old DRI and Suicidal, but still maintains an East Coast Hardcore sound all its own. As a bit of a side note, there are few instances where I’m very reminded of Leftover Crack.
The band is clearly one with a message and a cause. “Since forming, The New Enemy has donated all Bandcamp revenues to charity. For “Illusion of Choice”, we’ll be raising funds for YMCA Sprott House, the first LGBTQ2S transitional housing program for youth in Canada.”
You can listen to and buy copies here:
If you’re not down with that, then fuck you!
- You Want It Darker 01:45
- Scattered 01:54
- Thread 02:35
- Pressure Cooker 01:52
- Reign On Your Parade 02:07
- Death By Committee 02:23
- Shrine 03:00
- Ambition Now 03:36
As I’m sure you can tell from the dust around here, I don’t get around to writing about much anymore. Another phase of my life I suppose. What’s a fella to do? Every now and then I get a brief impetus to write something though. Today I shall grace you with the results of one of those urges.
I’ve got Shot Balowski’s self-titled debut album, out 03/29/2019, fired up on ye olde hifi and I’m rocking out to it. There’s a bit of a Ramonescore vibe as well as secondary source influence like Teenage Bottlerocket and Masked Intruder, combine that with a mix of The Pixies, an odd dash of Motorhead, add in a left-leaning bent and somewhat more raw of a sound and that’ll give you the gist.
The album provides 12 tracks of mostly up-tempo 3-piece punk rock, interlaced with the occasional folksy ballad on track six, Kitchen Sink / Girl in the Call Centre. There’s a bit of spoken word poetry as well mixed into the overall pastiche of a protest album. This isn’t to say it’s derivative in an overt way, so much as the song writing seems aware of its roots.
Overall it’s a great debut and I look forward to more from Shot Balowski in the future.
Hit the band up online to find out where to buy the new album, or catch a live show! Twitter:@shotbalowski
ShoT BAlowSki is a three-piece UK rock band with a leftist attitude and punk leanings. Debbie, Simon and Tef take grit, melody and acerbic lyrics and spit them out in two minutes flat.
Their self-titled debut album is released by Abnormal Product on Friday 29 March 2019 – it will be available on CD, download and streaming. It’s high-octane, classic punk rock from the dis-United Kingdom, tackling subjects like far right populism, and corrupt media, organisations and governments, while giving props to radical heroes like Emily Wilding Davison and Muhammad Ali.
The album’s tracks include Commander in Cheat (about Trump’s sexist, racist presidency), Nissan Poppy 24/7 (about patriotism and the politicisation of remembrance), Emily Does (about militant suffragette martyr Emily Wilding Davison), In the Suicide Forest (a short tone poem about vacuous vlogger Logan Paul), and a punk rock cover of Bob Marley’s Redemption Song.
Destroy the Daily Mail features a section written and performed by Wales’ most prominent living literary figure, poet and playwright Patrick Jones (see patrick-jones.info), elder brother of Nicky Wire of the Manic Street Preachers and a frequent collaborator with the Welsh chart-topping band. Jones adds a stream-of-consciousness set of Mail-esque headlines. He agreed to the collaboration after reading the lyrics and listening to the raw track, calling the song “important and powerful”.
There’s not a lot of fanfare. No major celebration. I had contemplated orchestrating something, but perhaps low-key is for the best.
Happy 20 Year Anniversary to Upstarter!
There are so many people I’d like to thank for their help and support over the years. None of this could have happened alone.
A very special thanks to Mike Park and Asian Man Records, who believed in my Web Zine when Web Zines were barely even a thing. Thanks to all the labels, bands, authors, and review writers who have supported Upstarter in one way or another through the years. There have been so many:
Asian Man Records, BYO Records, Jump Up Records, Epitaph, Hellcat, Fat Wreck Chords, Hopeless Records, Hannibal’s Records, Go Kart Records…
The list is exhaustive. I’m sorry for not thanking each and everyone of you in person, but please know how important you are to me, and how much I appreciate the support.
Labels, bands, friends worldwide, thank you!
I’m listening to a Pop Punk band based in the South of England called ‘We Know John‘ They’ve just completed their first album ‘A Shot in the Dark’ and it’s due for release on January 4th.
This brand sparkin’ new album serves up 11 tracks of peppy, upbeat, often horn-fueled pop punk. It reminds me of things. These things, as the often do, escape me. The one influence that keeps surfacing is, especially with the horns, Less Than Jake. There are worse things to be reminded of.
Some of the structure reminds me of an parallel universe Alkaline Trio, where everyone is a bit more happy. In an overarching sense, the band seems like a “happy” band. They would probably be cool to hang with.
The entire album isn’t up-note, however. The album takes a bit of a plunge into sadder territory as track 5, “Not OK” begins. So, um, you know, diversity! Anywho, it’s good stuff. Listen to it. Feel the joy that can only be derived from pop punk or from drugs.
Unrelated, but when I think of the band’s name, in my head, it comes out like the scene between Ed and Shaun in Shaun of the Dead, when Ed says, “I’m sorry, Shaun” … so um, “We know, John.”
We Know John are a 7 piece pop punk band hailing from Southampton UK; playing powerful and energetic music that will make you want to jump and bounce along. Their guitars, bass and drums provide the driving force that will lure you in, whilst their catchy melodies and punchy horn lines get stuck in your head until you are hooked.
Formed In May 2013, We Know John have had a slow start to life. With a few local gigs and a lot of practising behind them, the band are ready kick on and make 2018 a great year to remember.
Vocals, Trombone / Sam Weller
Vocals, Trumpet / Toby Brimson
Bass / Sam Rees
Guitar, Sass / Ben Peckham
Guitar / Ben Harker
Drums / John Townend
Saxophone / Rory SomethingOrOther