The Wobblies – *Red*Dawn*Rising* (c) 2006 The WobbliesPortland's proto-socialist punk rockers The Wobblies (The nickname for the Industrial Workers of the World) bust out 11 tracks of socially aware, fast paced, short attention span friendly, sing-a-long punk. In short, The Wobblies kick ass. This is, in fact, the punk that I want to listen to? My only regret, where the hell were The Wobblies when I lived in Portland? I guess they were still down in Corvallis or something getting their minds polluted with the wicked liberal ideals of college. Tracks 2, "Proud Right Wing" and 3, "Bogata" are personal favorites. I do love a good sing-a-long chorus. Production is raw as are the riffs, but this is punk and it works for its fervor. So thankfully I don't have to rate it on the Malmsteen scale. Overall Grade: A–Jerry Actually
The Bronx – The Bronx (II) (c)2006 Island Records / White Drugs Records I'll be damned. A major label band that ain't too bad. The Bronx, though not in fact from The Bronx, transmit a gritty and streetable urban appeal. The tracks for the most part are up tempo and clock in under 3 minutes with the exception of the rather haunting "Dirty Leaves" The Bronx appear to be part of the major resurgence of rock and roll in L.A. and in the country in general for that matter. With Zeppelin like vocal wailings and rocking out rhythms like a more articulate Mudhoney, they definitely have the rock thing going on. I'll be honest. It is the first thing in the morning and I've barely sucked down half my coffee, but the report thus far is that I like The Bronx. They have a sound that sounds like something that I remember that I like, but don't remember precisely what that is.
Drive By – I Hate Every Day Without You Kid… (c)2006 Riot Squad RecordsHere is some more music on the Emo tip. Not quite as bad as the crap that I usually hate. Drive By has a bit of an Alkaline Trio feel albeit with less punk rock and more emo-pop driving it. I guess the drive by that they are taking about is the one where you drive by the flower shop and pick up some flowers for a funeral or something. Don't get me wrong though, I listened to the whole CD a couple times and not once did I run away screaming or try to stab myself in the ears with a pen. The debut CD from Drive By is definitely music for the depressed, the ones that are looking for catharsis.
Angel City Outcasts – Deadrose Junction (c) 2006 Sailor's Grave RecordsThough they may tout the word outcast, these L.A. Boys massively recall the extremely embraced early 80's SoCal rock sound, albeit blended with more punk attitude. The Angel City Outcasts new release "Deadrose Junction" begs to be compared to early Crue and G'N'R. It is definitely straight ahead rock, but thankfully it lacks the posturing and pretense of the 80's hair-metal glam scene. "Deadrose Junction" also raises the rock bar with some of their more aggressive punk riffs. Comparisons and critiques aside, I still can't help but think that I could really get into blasting this on a beat up jam box while riding around drunk in the back of a pickup anywhere in the Midwest. 3 cheers for Rock and Roll!
(c) 2006 Susspool Records
Punk punk punk punk punk it up! Yeah the Acrobrats do that. They also bust out 8 tracks of contagious pop-laced punk rock-n-roll on their sophomore release “…Go Down Swinging” As well as busting out cleverly rockin’ originals, there is also a cover of post new wave darlings The Primitives’ hit single “Crash”. I always thought that’d be a great cover. Incidentally, I was right.
If I had to liken their sound to something, right now, I’m inclined to think it would be as if 7 seconds got fused with pieces of Rancid. Above all, a fun peppy release that doesn’t weigh you down with filler. If you care to check out some tracks visit their site at www.theacrobrats.com
b.t.w. for anyone reading this, bands and labels and p.r. folk that send swag can totally sway my opinion.
The Ducky Boys – The War Back Home (c) 2006 Sailor's Grave Records Ah, when I think of Boston, I think of Blood for Blood or Slap Shot. But that does not mean everyone thinks like jimmy bile. The Ducky Boys…THE WAR BACK HOME…Sailors Grave Records, is reminiscent of the story telling of the ancient days past. I appreciate the no “verse chorus verse” idea and the mad antics of the instrumentals, but they might do better keeping the attention of the audience by speeding up the pace. Don't get me wrong, they rock, and I'll give them most of my thumbs up! thanks for reading, jimmy bile
Flashlight Brown – Blue(c) 2006 Hollywood RecordsFlashlight Brown , refreshingly, defies the pigeon-holeing that I am often reduced to. Are they punk? Are they rock? Are they 4th wave ska? Are they a secret government laboratory band from outer space? Hell if I know. I do know this though, they make me want to pogo like a mofo. The songs are catchy both musically and lyrically. Though there is a bit a static pattern throughout the tracks, ala verse chorus verse, but because the tracks average out to around the 3 minute mark or less, I don't find myself becomeing bored. I guess if I had to try to compare their sound to anything it would be a melange of 7 seconds Goldfinger and perhaps Sum 41. Flashlight Brown will be playing on the warped tour this summer as well as quite a few independent dates prior go check 'em out. What have you got to lose? You're problably going to the Warped Tour anyway. To break it on down. Flashlight Brown is catchy poppy and fun. However, perhaps a bit indulgent if you're too damn hardcore that you can't admit to singing along with Weezer songs.
Born To Lose – Sweet Misery (c) 2006 Sailor's Grave Records Born To Lose ' debut Sailor's Grave record "Sweet Misery" is 12 anthemic tracks of pure Texas punk. Based out of Austin, the hotbed of Texas college culture and the home of SXSW, it comes as a small surprise that there is no lap steel guitar or lowsome yodelling on this record. Kidding aside, Born To Lose is a solid punk rock band that has a lot of the qualities of Avail or the more sing along parts of H2O. Bottom line, punk rock presented in the form of punk rock. Good Stuff.
The Kings of Nuthin' – Over The Counter Culture (c) 2006 Sailor's Grave RecordsThe King's of Nuthin' except bad ass rock and fucking roll. "Over the Counter Culture" is the long awaited follow up to "Fight Songs…" and I for one am impressed. The Kings of Nuthin' embody the passion of The Wanderers with the ethos of all that is punk rock. I have little but praise for the 50's inspired sound that these fellas rekindle. The Kings of Nuthin' are redefining an entire genre of music. Much like their hometown brethren, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Kings of Nuthin' have done for Rock and Roll what the aforementioned did for ska. I can't recommend this CD enough. Be amazed with their originals and provoked with the, dare I say "classic punk" covers. Who needs a president when you already have multiple kings!
The Welch Boys
(c) 2006 Sailor’s Grave Records
The Welch Boys are doing their part to keep Boston, MA on the punk rock map. With the official release of their self-titled CD out now on Sailor's Grave Records. The Welch Boys are a 5 member street punk band from straight outta Boston replete with aggressive guitar work crashing drums and rowdy sing-a-long choruses. Comprised of members of legendary acts such as The Blue Bloods and Slapshot, The pedigree of The Welch Boys doesn't fail to impress. If you're a fan of Dropkick or Streetdogs, odds are great that you'll also be a fan of The Welch Boys. The 15 tracks clock in at just over a half an hour so those with short attention spans need not be concerned. The songs contain many usual punk concerns such as unity, false friendship, emotional struggle, and as with most of the Boston punk, there is an overwhelming sense of civic pride. Though they run around a lot of familar territory, The Welch Boys bring a fresh sound and voice to the anthemic Boston punk sound. Bottom line, The Welch Boys don't dissapoint.