Thursday, August 20, 2009

BLObPUS custom contest

Here are some pictures of my Blobpus custom for the contest via Lulubell Toys. I poured red acrylic craft paint on the inside, then did some sprays in black and silver w/ spray paint, then added the details w/ paint markers. This was my first kaiju style paint job, and I'm pretty happy w/ it.

For reference purposes, here's what it looked like originally, you can see the vinyl was clear.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Record Reviews (summer edition)

It's summer, which means there's a lot more bands touring. That also means there's a lot of records you should be buying to support these bands. Go see: Coke Bust/ Sick Fix, Shitty Limits/ Logic Problem, I Hate This/ Backslider, Zhenia Golov/ Plague Bearers, Rip It Up/ Stressed Out, Punch, and Guilty Faces who are all still on tour through August.


Waste Management- Get Your Mind Right E.P.
This came out a while back, but I wish someone had clued me in on this band earlier, holy shit. The vocals are almost a dead ringer for Springa (SSD), and the music has a real early 80's Boston feel to it. This has a perfect balance of raging fast parts, and slow mosh parts. Some of the lyrics seem to be straight edge oriented, but the band isn't very up front about it. Great 7", hopefully they have more in the works.

Boiling Over- Trash City
I had only known Boiling Over from the Punx Don't Drink comp, but much like Cold Shoulder their own EP is way better. "Humanity is Fucked" kicks off this beast, and sets the tone of a bleak world view for the rest of the record. My favorite song is "These Colors Don't Crust" which has a pretty memorable chorus of "We have been wronged, we have been lied to." I love bands like this that are sXe, but don't use it as a marketing ploy from some watered down cartoon version of hardcore. This straight up, no BS early 80's inspired HC. The record also comes w/ an mp3 download, which is always convenient.

I Hate This- s/t
Released just in time for their US tour, IHT drops their first solo 7". After a lineup change (one of those changes happened to be the primary song writer), they don't let up on the fastcore fury. The music is more in a Charles Bronson direction, taking old style HC structure and speeding them up. Pick a copy up from the band as it hasn't made its way into distros yet.

The Shitty Limits- Here Are the Limits
The Shitty Limits are a band from the UK, who are currently on tour in the US. Their sound is some sort of mix of garage rock and late 70's punk. I could see them fitting in well on a show with Jay Reatard or one with Regulations. "Here Are The Limits" opens up the record with a bullhorn scream, which is a pretty good introduction to the record and the band itself. The songs on here are a real bouncy mid pace. The guitar tone is undistorted, and matches perfectly with their style.

The Shitty Limits- Espionage
This is basically a single for the song "Espionage," backed with 2 faster songs. The music is almost 60's British rock influenced, which I guess makes some sense since they're from the UK. The B side offers 2 more tracks with a slightly different sound, "We Had a Gang" is probably the better of the 2. This record is ok, but I prefer the "Here Are the Limits" E.P.

No Man's Slave- Siege Mentality
I saw these guys in NJ, and picked up this there. For a band named after an Infest LP, I thought I knew what to expect. I got a real Ruination feel from them, which was confirmed by the Left For Dead cover at the end of the record. They somehow cram 14 songs on this record without feeling like they just threw a bunch of crap together. The music is fast as hell, but with a moshy heaviness to it.

Nitad- Ge Oss Mer
This is a reissue of the band's 2nd 7", which I believe was limited originally. Honestly the artwork was what really attracted me to this record, it's like 60's poster art. The music is early 80's upbeat punk sounding, but sung is Swedish. Sounds pretty similar to fellow Swedes Masshysteri or Regulations, but with a lot more punch to it.

Nitad- s/t
Despite the cover art on my version looking like a Bathory 7" (I have the tour pressing, so the cover may be different when it's released for real), this is a definite punk record. This record doesn't deviate too far from the sound on their previous efforts. It does seem a lot tighter and angrier (the lyrics are still in Swedish, so i have no idea). Definitely pick this up once it's properly released.

Drag the River- ...Has A Way With Women
I got this because I heard it was Chad Price's (of ALL fame) new band. The songs seem to have been recorded a while back, and are more demo quality. I would say there's a real country vibe to these. It's pretty cool, but I doubt I'll play this more than a few times.

Zhenia Golov/ Botox Party
NJ's Zhenia Golov bring us 2 new songs of politically influenced crusty thrash. Botox Party play more folky pop-punk, that almost Propaghandi sounding. It's a pretty strange balance for the 2 band to do a split, but somehow it works as both bands have played together often before. I should note that there is a Botox Party song at the end of the ZG side. I'm not sure why they did this (as well as having blank labels), but I know I'm guilty of only listening to one particular side of a split record.

Mirrors and Wires- Colorized Audio Transmission
This is not surf punk, but it is punks playing surf (mixed with a little bit of psychedelic rock). M&W are an all instrumental group w/ members of some local HC/Punk bands. The A side offers 3 short musical bursts, while the B side has one long more psychedelic song. I definitely enjoyed the A side way more personally. It's definitely something different, and makes for some feel good background music.

Ugly Law- s/t
I love the recent rise of old dudes playing in hardcore bands, and one of these dudes was in Unseen Force. My band did a weekend tour w/ this dudes back in May, and I got this then. They play a mid/late 80's crossover hardcore sound. Kinda reminds me of Animosity era COC at times. They seem to take similar influences to COC, blending southern rock with faster hardcore sounds. This was self-released, and apparently they have another record recorded.


Coke Bust- Lines in the Sand
After an good demo and a really good 7", Coke Bust come out with this amazing LP. I seriously think this blows everything they did previously out of the water. "Countdown to Death" is my favorite song (also their longest), and has a great slow mosh which reminds me of SSD. "Leave Me Behind" also has a great 2 second hard mosh at the end of it. I think if you wrote off Coke Bust in the past, this will change your mind. The song writing and lyrics have matured into on amazing HC record. Also, GO SEE COKE BUST ON TOUR!

Punch- s/t
I had heard great things about Punch since their last tour, so I decided to check em out at their Philly show. Boy was I impressed. The music is somewhere along the lines of Scholastic Death type thrash, mixed with some youth crew influenced mosh breakdowns. The mosh buildup in "Ol' Factory" rules. They manage to pack 16 songs into 20 minutes of hardcore fury. Not to make it a selling point, but Punch are a female fronted hardcore band. That doesn't let up any of the fury here, as she can belt it out with the best of em. Definitely try to catch them on tour!

Bad Antics- Tour LP
I wasn't a huge fan of Bad Antics' last record, but picked this up after seeing them in NJ. It's more a step back to the California punk influence that the first 7" had. The songs are kind of mid paced and slower (and therefore longer) than their older stuff. It kinda reminds me of those later Adolescents and DI albums that nobody really listens to. Honestly I'm more impressed with the cover art, which is stenciled and spray painted, so each one is different.


Just Die!- Garages and Basements
Musically NC's Just Die! seem to take the Kid Dynamite approach, but faster... and I mean WAY faster. The music has some melodic parts, but the vocals are harsh and screamed. Saw this band on a whim in NJ a few weeks ago and was very impressed, they were super nice dudes too. This is the CD version of a 7" that wasn't ready in time for tour.

Sick Fix- Nothing Else Mattered No one Else Mattered (tape or CDr)
Sick Fix decided to record a new demo before their tour w/ Coke Bust this summer, and it's about damn time. I thought their 7" was good, but didn't really do any justice to how they sound live. Michelle's vocals have gotten a lot more brutal sounding since then as well. Here you get 4 new song and a re-recording of "One Third" (from the 7"/demo) with a way slower breakdown (in a good way). "Liberty Lost" has the new intro, which they've been playing live for the past year, and boy is it heavy. My favorite song on here is "Boudica." Hopefully this is a demo for a new record in the works, whether it be an EP or LP I'm sure it will be a monster.

Backslider (tape)
The idea of a 2 person fastcore band sounds about as appealing to me as a turd sandwich, however somehow this defies my expectations. There's a good balance of grindy parts, power violence style breakdowns, and of course short songs. The way the songs are mixed, it's almost like one giant song with stops. I feel like for a 2 person band things should be a lot tighter, but it's just a demo so I'll cut em some slack. The new stuff on their website has a more Lack of Interest sound, and blows this stuff away. This band also comprises 1/2 of I Hate This, and are on tour w/ them now.

Outlast (tape)
Outlast are a new youth crew sXe hardcore band from NJ. If you read this blog, you know I have a real soft spot for this type of stuff. It reminds me of the late 90's sXe revival bands like In My Eyes and Better Than A Thousand (there's even some Cappo style growls). The recording quality is really clean for a demo, and apparently it will be re-pressed on vinyl soon. Bands like this were a dime a dozen like 10 years ago, but now I miss this type of stuff. The lyrics cover your typical posi topics such as change, unity, helping each other out, and of course being straight edge. Awesome!

Teenage Whore-Moans- Moan All Nite Long (pro-tape)
Teenage Whore Moans play some low-fi garage influenced pop-punk. The low quality of the recording kind of ruins it for me, and maybe a better studio recording would have been a little easier on the ears. I guess with "garage" styled stuff you can get away with that. Otherwise it's some poppy songs about girls ...not my thing.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

8-Bit and Beyond show pieces

Megaman & the Robot Masters



The Autumn Society's tribute to video games "8 Bit & Beyond" opens on Friday (8/7) @ Brave New Worlds Comics in Philly, PA. This is going to be a great show, and I encourage anyone in the area to check it out! All of my pieces were drawn in Illustrator, then printed and cut into stencils, then spray painted on canvas. I also did an interview over at about my Metroid piece.