Category Archives: Albums

The Revox — In Mono

The Revox
In Mono
Soundflat Records
September 14, 2018

All the way from Switzerland, The Revox embody the voracious spirit of sounds meant for the wild and untamed. They celebrate a style mixing the essence of the raucous Black Lips twisted with The Chesterfield Kings, but emphasizing the moody but primitive nature of Los Saicos. Their new record In Mono exemplifies their talent to blast out raw garage punk stompers through hi energy tunes of desperate rock n’ roll with dashes of fuzzed out psychedelia.

In Mono is an album that immediately grabs the unwary listener’s attention by the extremities and holds tight. The opening track “Father In Low” boasts a savage sound demanding listeners move around like bewitched dolls. This song brilliantly blends essential elements of snotty punk with a certain maddening defiance. As a far as 1960’s revivalist garage rock goes, this track nails it and cements what is to be found within In Mono.

Another top tune is “Gloria Stompers.” This one easily rips from the riffs of the iconic Van Morisons “Gloria.” It’s a song stepped in a moody garage punk with a definitive attitude. While the instrumentals borrow heavily from “Gloria” it’s a tune that pays homage rather than imitation. Another familiar song on In Mono is the cover of The Leave’s “Hey Joe.” Like Gloria Stompers, The Revox makes a clear nod to the legendary time of the 1960’s, and in doing so it does the garage punk legacy justice.

The real magic on this album is the tune “Never Ending Trip” It’s got a strong build up to a fuzzed out guitar riffs that give way to the infectious chorus of “I’m freaking out!” “Never Ending Trip” could easily be found in a Back From The Grave compilation, if it wasn’t a modern tune.  This track is a personal favorite from In Mono. It’s not only catchy as hell, but this song truly demonstrates The Revox’s natural ability to hold their own in the expanse of garage punk music. To not find oneself singing along to “Never Ending Trip” might warrant a keen head examination.

The Revox truly out do themselves with their new record. Compared to their recent single release on Voodoo Rhythm Recordings, In Mono is a little more cleaned up, but that doesn’t hamper their impressive style in the slightest.  In Mono is a fantastic album and If one did not consider it as a worthy part of their record collection, that oversight would be a clear indication of a drastic mistake. So beware, get this record and play this one loud enough to upset the neighbors. You’ll be glad you did.

Wild Evel and The Trashbones – Digging My Grave

Wild Evel and The Trashbones
Digging My Grave
Dirty Water Records
Released: 11/24/2017

Digging My Grave is a brilliant album that compliments a long standing legacy of garage punk. For me, it captures the essential ingredients that combine the raw nature of garage rock with the defiant attitude of punk. Wild Evel and The Trashbones excel with a musical presence that vaunts the essential essence of adolescent angst, but with a sound arguably more refined. It’s style that is rooted in 1966, but celebrates  a likeness to Screaming Lord Sutch, with the fury of The Cramps.

As a whole Digging My Grave is comprised of solid bangers. Each song shows off Wild Evel and The Trashbones exemplary talent to tug on all three chords of the garage punk heart-strings. However, the tracks “Digging My Grave,” “Why Can’t We Be” and “Gotta Leave Town” clearly stand above the rest.

First off the title track “Digging My Grave” harkens on the demonic nature of Screaming Lord Sutch while borrowing the spooky theme from Larry and The Blue Notes “Night Of The Sadist.” It’s the kind of tune to grab your soul and twist you into a savage kind of possession. Perfect for blasting during the witching hour, play this one loud to the haunting benefit of those around.

“Why Can’t We Be” is a humbling tune that pays homage to the all mighty Satelliters. Wild Evel and The Trashbones easily hold their own in comparison to their German cousins. However, as illustrated by this tune, credit is due to The Satelliters  for fueling the garage rock torch throughout the European continent.

“Gotta Leave Town” is among the best that Wild Evel and The Trashbones have to offer. This mooder borrows from a blues sensibility while firmly grasping the shy yet primitive nature of sounds emanating from the crypts of teenage-garage punk. While many modern garage rooted tracks place an emphasis on unrelenting passion or attitude, this track dares to be vulnerable with it’s theme of being overwhelmed and seeking to desperately   skip town. For like-minded tracks check out check out the newly released Sites and Sounds “The Night Is So Dark” 7” released by Slovenly Records.

This is an album that ought to be among any garage punkers record collection. If you lack excitement, then Wild Evel and the Trashbones are your kind of feral entertainment. Digging My Grave is filled with tunes to excite, make you moan and even inspire one to pull on their chelsea boots, and go out to cause some rebel-without–a–cause kind of hell.  So, don’t be square and dip out on this record.

 

For more on Wild Evel and The Trashbones check out their Facebook or Bandcamp.

The Laissez Fairs — Target On My Back

The Laissez Fairs
Target On My Back
BIRS Recordings
Release: November 06, 2017

 The Laissez Fairs are the manifestation of 60 years of Mod inspired music. A talented lot, they come from a wide range of influences and comprise the talents of former Steppes frontman John Fallon, his son Cromm Fallon with Joe Lawless and Aaron Archer. They boast styles varying from freakbeat, fuzzed out psychedelia to the nitty gritty of garage-esque brit pop.

Their debut album Target On My Back is a record invoking the sensibilities of sounds  reminiscing  of Blur infused with The Velvet Underground, while utilizing the flair of The Beatles psychedelic nature from the Revolver era. While dipping into a wide spectrum of mod psychedelia, songs such as “Winter Dying” betray a kind of folky feel. In contrast the title track “Target On My Back” captures the a nostalgic feel for everything upbeat and brit-pop. While “I’ve Got You” is all calm and groovy.

The magic on this record is the track “Bells Ring Out.” For me this track captures a unique provocative essence that exemplifies the idea behind Laissez Fair’s mantra of “Maximum Mod Pysch.” It’s a number that begs for 1960’s freakbeat but twists with 1980’s garage revival. Furthermore It’s got the attitude of The Action and capturing the reserved swagger of the likes of Marc Bolan or Gary Walker.

In all, these Las Vegas Mods are real go getters. Despite the sweltering heat of their desert home these cats clearly show that they can always suit up and deliver. For more about The Laissez Fairs, check out their facebook.

The Blankz – White Baby/Sissy Glue 7″

The Blankz
White Baby/Sissy Glue 7”
Slope Records
Street: 07.13
The Blankz = Devo + The Epoxies + The Spits


Born in 2017, The Blankz are a vibrant electrical current of pogo-inducing madness. Together, they are Tommy Blank (vox), Jaime Blank (guitar), Andy Blank (bass), Johnny Blank (drums) and Nikkie Blank (synthesizer), who also fronts The Darts. They are from Phoenix, Arizona, and like their state, they are hot but not bothered. Their debut record, the White Baby/Sissy Glue record, is a lethal combination of orgasmic weirdo pop infused with the sensibilities of raucous punk rock.

Check out the full album review published by @SLUG MAGAZINE!!

The Speedways – Just Another Regular Summer

The Speedways
Just Another Regular Summer
Gods Candy Records
Released: 05.27.2018

The Speedways’ Just Another Regular Summer provides the new essential anthems for teenage inspired kicks and heartaches. Easily taking nods from a nostalgic 77-ear of punky-power pop sound, The Speedways capture the styles that made The Boys or The Outcasts definitive. It’s a record that boasts dreamy power pop brilliance for the modern age. This is an album that professes sounds that are unique and excellent. To say anything less would be blasphemy.

This album was composed by Mathew Julian with the addition of Dec Burns on the drums. Just Another Regular Summer captures the nostalgic essence of Joey Ramone’s longing vocals by twisting it with an attitude worthy of the Exploding Hearts and infusing it with the hopeless romantic nature of Protex and the Speedies. The tracks on Just Another Regular Summer are performed with a kind of painful restraint but maintains a cool and passionate feeling. This is especially evident with the track “Reunion In The Rain.”

This is the perfect music to inspire feelings of being soaked in heartbreak, while forever being possessed by the powerful spell that first begged one to fall in love. Each track on this album is golden and there is no filler. However, my favorite songs are “Seen Better Days” and “One Kiss Can Lead To Another.” “Seen Better Days” is a groovy jangly pop tune with an infectious chorus. “One Kiss Can Lead To Another” is the song for lovers and is sung from the perspective of one shyly longing for romance.

If I had to nominate an album that was meant to be heard this summer, then it is most certainly Just Another Regular Summer. Through masterful lyricism and composition, Julian shows excellence in creating melodies that inspire the vivid imagery serenading the complexity of love that is lost. Rumor has it this is a one album wonder. If it is, lovers of power pop will be hard pressed to find tunes like these ever again. Don’t miss out on this gem and grab a copy of Just Another Regular Summer where ever it may be available. This is the diamond in the rough and it pleads to be heard.

For more of The Speedways, visit their Bandcamp!

Faz Waltz – Double Decker

Faz Waltz
Double Decker
SpaghettyTown Records
March 21, 2018

Faz Waltz’s new album Double Decker is a worthy successor to their already rich catalogue of music. Since the release of Callin’ Loud in 2016 it’d almost be a surprise if Faz Waltz could top songs like ‘Good Time Is Callin’ Loud.’

However, with Double Decker, fans will be pleased to find an album filled with bangers, catchy anthems and ballads meant to invigorate the soul. Much like with their previous material this album captures the boot-stomping essence of Jook, with Slade meets a Revolver era Beatles-like rock n’ roll sound.

Dig the full review published at Heatwave Magazine!!

Fashionism – Smash Singles LP

Fashionism
Smash Singles LP
Sorry State Records
Released: April 20, 2018

Fashionisms Smash Singles LP is an essential collection of recordings for the lovers of not only power pop, but also clever and intelligent lyricism. This record boasts material from the first four Fashionism singles, which are now hard to come by, with the addition of a couple previously unreleased tracks. Fans of Fashionism will find this record treads mostly familiar territory. For first timers, the Smash Singles LP is a good way to be introduced to one of the more interesting bands of the last decade.

The songs found within the grooves of the Smash Singles LP celebrate the clever nature could have been heard by The Boys or even by the sharp wit of The Adverts. This is largely thanks to vocalist Jeffery McCloy masterful weaving of punchy lyrics that tell a story with a sound that combines the infectious nature of Bay City Rollers like glam rock meeting the sensibilities of The Purple Hearts.

This hybrid style effortlessly combines the intense energy of punk with intelligent social criticism largely lost by the chorus of grunts and growls of the spikey studded cast. While their songs are very socially aware, Fashionism do not deliver their messages as a blow to the head. Rather, they do so via bubblegum styled tunes to bounce about with and be subtly influenced by.

Many of Fashionism’s songs defiantly beg for the nostalgia of times long past. Songs like “Subculture Suicide” lament the painful and frustrating demise of traditional subcultural identity. While others like the new track “Weekend” remains steadfast in the Fashionism tradition of being unapologetically socially critical of shameless social media inspired vanity.

Others hits on this record include my personal favorite “Where Have All The Rock n’ Roll Girls Gone.” This one pays homage to New Town  Animals hit “Rock N Roll Scene.” Another is “Stop, Drop, Rock n’ Roll.” It’s a song that demands dance while McCoy rapidly name drops pop culture references from the McCoys “Hang on Sloopy” to ? and The Mysterians “96 Tears.” Fashionism also have a silly side with tracks like “One Shot.” It’s a song about being delightfully addicted to coffee. This one is fast and melodically furious– not to mention catchy as hell.

This record is well worth getting, particularly, if the Fashionism singles have eluded your capture. This super-group is made of members of The Tranzmitors, The Jolt, The Orange Kyte and New Town Animals. Their sound is deviously infectious and upbeat. It’s good for those familiar and for newcomers alike. Above all, it’s a gem, so go get it.

For More Fashionism, check out their Bandcamp!

Los YaYaz — Born Dead

Los YaYaz Right to Left (Shane Kiel, Aaron Wilkison, Mariano Wilson and Micheal Flecha.

Los Yayaz
Born Dead
Self-Released
Released: 05/12/2018

Los YaYaz have blazed through the Salt Lake City music scene by combining the wild and primitive style of Los Yetis and Los Saicos with the intensity of The Sonics. This new record maintains their iconic blended style with all the trappings of repressed teenage angst and longing desperation. Their delivery is raw and if I didn’t know better I would have sworn Born Dead was some long lost garage-punk- unknown. Historically, Los YaYaz perform  both in English and Spanish. Born Dead, however, has all tracks recorded in English. This album was recorded live, and is only available on cassette or via their bandcamp.

Born Dead contains covers of well-known tracks like The Sonics “The Hustler” and Bo Diddley’s “I’m a Man.” Listening to these covers it’s clear that the Los Yayaz have done their homework and almost own each song as their own. The the cover of The Bel-Aires “Ya Ha Be Be,” really shows of Los YaYaz  their musical tightness. It comes across as a more comfortable tune to cover as it appears that they are having a blast recording this track.

Out of all the covers on Born Dead, “All Black & Hairy” is easily my favorite. This track captures the haunting nature of Screaming Lord Sutch with the moody yet dirty nature of rock n’ roll found six feet deep. Joining Los YaYaz on  the organ for  “All Black & Hairy” is producer Dennis Fuller (also of The Boys Ranch).

The real magic on Born Dead is the original Los YaYaz material.  Largely written by vocalist Mariano Wilson,songs such as “Just a Little Bit” and “Sad and Blue” stay true to 1960’s garage rock form by betraying the familiar teenage garage punk themes of snotty adolescent defiance and love. With “Sad and Blue” the Los YaYaz boast a real moody groover. In a way it almost reminds me of the recently unearthed Sites N’ Sounds “The Night Is So Dark.” The difference between the two is a discernible roughness that will inspire listeners to sway and stomp their way to the grave.

The only departure of from the garage rock sound is with Aaron’s Wilkinson’s’ “Nerd Basher.” While definitely influenced by a more aggressive late 1966 garage rock sound, this track falls more in line with the attitude of 1970’s punk with the jet-fuel aggression of The MC5.

Overall, Los YaYaz bring a much needed revived sense of passion into garage rock. It’s clear that with Born Dead that they have refined their sound. Furthermore, these guys know their roots and have yet to cease bringing back a bordering untamed nature. Their use of covers are fine here and there, and they do them justice, but Los YaYaz demonstrates the knack for solid material with their own songs. Looking forward, I hope to hear more Los YaYaz originals—maybe even a return to some Spanish sung tunes.

It would be a tragedy if Born Dead is lost to unknown pages of history, so do yourself a favor and pick up their tape. Los YaYaz’s Born Dead demonstrates that rock n’ roll is here to stay and it’ll never die. Born Dead is a must own for anyone who boasts a love for garage rock. Pick it up.

For more from Los Yayaz check out their Bandcamp and Facebook.

Also check out their new music video for “The Shadow.”

 

The Cavemen – Nuke Earth (Slovenly Records)

The Cavemen
Nuke Earth
Slovenly Records
Released 18.04.2018

Sinful and nihilistic, The Cavemen’s Nuke Earth does nothing short of leave its listener as a drooling, reverbed drenched mess. Fans of The Cavemen will be comforted to know that their legendary barbarity remains intact. This record is a 25 minute thrill ride that invokes the untamed nature of Guitar Wolf and the brutality of the Dwarves. Much like their other records, The Cavemen do not disappoint by embodying an unapologetic assault on all that is vanilla and bland in the music world.

Check out the full album review published by Heatwave Magazine!!

 

The Terrorsurfs – Mutant Surfin’ Trash

The Terrorsurfs
Mutant Surfin’ Trash
Sharawaji Records
Street: 02.23
The Terrorsurfs = The Boys Ranch + The Phantom Four + Dick  Dale

The tenacious surfing garage rockers The Terrorsurfs are back with their new album Mutant Surfin’ Trash. Like their other releases, fans can easily expect some consistency in The Terrorsurfs’ style. It’s the grittiness of The Cramps twisting through the vivid wild sounds of The Trashmen. Think of it as a soundtrack for a Quentin Tarantino film, like a contemporary Kill Bill Vol 1 or Pulp Fiction, but with the desperation of Robert Rodriguez’s Once Upon a Time in Mexico.

Check out the full review of Mutant Surfin’ Trash published by SLUG Magazine!!