||SUBB - THE MOTIONS|
May 2006 on
Stomp Records (May 24th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
SUBB's Official Website
1. A Little More of Chomsky (A Little Less of You and Me)
2. The Motions
3. Make Trade Fair
4. Tattoo (Rancid Cover)
5. I've Got it All Wrong
6. No Need to Stay
7. The Factories
8. Don't Be Gone
9. Following the Dots
10. Forget me Not
11. The Feeling You've Lost It
12. Quarter to Seven
14. The Remedy & The Cure
15. Said & Done
16. We Can Rest When We're Dead
So ! First thing first, I have to say that I was pretty excited when I first heard that SUBB, one of the most brilliant bands in the whole province were hitting back the studio for a brand new opus. Huge fan for long years, I was anticipating this release hell of a lot. I just got it yesterday night, at their show, like 2 weeks after the official release date. Why do I never receive CDs from the Union Label Group ? Go figure. On the other hand, I feel way better for actually buying it, since I care a lot about these guys and I'd rather help them than just talk and talk like a dumb blasι reviewer that gets everything for free and someday loses the sight of mental balance. -I'm not aiming on anyone here, by the way.- And why am I two weeks late? Looks stupid, but I don't buy CDs at record stores anymore. I always buy CDs at shows, and because it was SUBB, I resisted to the temptation of downloading an internet rip. I'm proud of myself. Anyway..
After Daylight Savings that was, in my opinion, a bit weak compared to Until the Party Ends or Highstep to Hell, I was really expecting a huge step up from the guys, and yeah, they really outdid themselves this time. At the first listen, I was kinda unsecure cause this CD is really different than all their previous ones. I was really affraid to lose this Punk/Ska blend that got me into Subb throughout these years to the hands of xCorex screams and/or cheesy pop punk, and actually, these two elements totally completed the puzzle on this record. you got some damn cheesy -but still awesome- pop punk songs, with screams (which is kinda new for SUBB), and it's still great. SUBB : 1, Industry : 0. To be honest with all of you, the major strength of this CD is out of all doubt the Reggae songs. "The Motions" (song #2 and first single) has played exactly 74 times between 3 AM this morning and right now, 23h45... I'm a bit of a freak, I know, but this song is killer. "Tattoo", a Rancid cover, is another brilliant song. I know it's not really hard to actually make a song sound better than Rancid, but yeah, hands down. Then comes "Don't be Gone", with a dangerous chorus ΰ la Marley, there's too "We can Rest When We Are Dead", an acoustic one, excellent closer. Now if we go to the other extreme, the straight punk, we really have something going on here. "The Feeling You've Lost it" is actually one of the best SUBB songs ever, damn aggressive and still they find a way to make the place skanked up just like Suicide Machines always did, just to name them. One thing that is pretty new with "The Motions"; SUBB now shows social conscience in it's music. That's rad ! Clearly supporting the animals condition in "The Remedy and the Cure", against big corporations and sweatshops in "Make Trade Fair" and "The Factories", and against the idiot trends in "Fashionistas". This aspect is really nice to considerate, but still I think that these very first paces into the political punk kinda affected their lyrics. A lot less rhymes, simpler sentences and stuff, it's a beginning -and a good one- but yeah, it changed a little bit their songwriting. Musically, we can really feel the maturity that the guys got through years. I don't know if they reached their musical peak, but they sure outdid themselves again on this aspect. On a side note, the album covert art is pretty nice.
Okay. Let's go for my personal highlights now. As "The Motions" stands as my absolute crush, I'll still point out the other songs that really got my attention. "A little more of Chomsky" has a damn chorus that I actually can't get out of my head. "I've got it all Wrong" is a real simple upbeat ska song that is really really sounding like earlier Suicide Machines stuff, without the Jason Navarro's harsh voice, for sure. The I'll go with "The Feeling You've lost It" that actually made the crowd going nuts yesternight, awesome song. I would have personally deleted the screaming parts, but anyway.
Okay so I'm out with all of this. There's too much to say about this album to be honest. 16 songs, lots of eclectic stuff, you guys all need this CD, I can tell. "The Motions", along with "Keep Your Heart"(The Loved Ones) and "War Profiteering is Killing Us All" (Suicide Machines) will finally be shown the access to my personal Hall of Fame. Let's give it up for the 3 new hall of famers ! The summer is finally here and for once I really feel like I have some new stuff to listen in my spare time and in my car, which is incredible. Hands down to the guys !!
||The Loved Ones - Keep Your Heart
Fat Wreck Chords (May 24th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
The Loved Ones' Official Website
1. Suture Self
2. Breathe In
4. Over 50 Club
5. Please be Here
6. Hurry Up and Wait
8. Living Will (Get you Dead)
9. The Odds
10. Benson & Hedges
13. Player Hater Anthem
Oh jesus. As all the FAT bands are stuck on sucking lately, I kinda stopped listening to most of them and my life was going way better. By the most hazardous hazard, I was flipping through the PureVolume site pages and I just clicked on a band called The Loved Ones. Whoa.
What a kick right up the ass. Trios sure can rock, and these guys are the living proof. A brilliant mix of good old PunkRock and a powerful Poppy edge, I gotta say that this CD will probably be this summer's "most played CD in my car" award winner. A vocal mix of
let me think
Nuno from A Wilhelm Scream and Thomas from Strike Anywhere, nice guitar riffs, neat bass guitar parts and awesome melodies
Fat Wreck at it's finest. The whole CD is fully enjoyable, some songs are quite slow but still it's an A+ Class record. The first song, "Suture Self", kicks in like daddy IN mommy. It sure stands out as my favourite song. Play it loud! Some other songs are pretty amazing, like "Living Will (Get Your Dead)", a Blink182-ish poppy song, or "Benson & Hedges", my second favourite, a real "Strike-Anywhere-influenced" song. I sure can't forget to talk about "Over 50 Club", maybe the only song that can get along with "Suture Self" when it comes down to speedy p0nK. The rest of the slow is quite slow, which makes the whole listening of the CD sort of an up and down experience, which isn't half bad.
"So what can I say to end this review?", I was asking myself. Even though I really like this album, I couldn't feel okay with myself by saying that this is a "masterpiece" or whatsoever, because it sure is not. Fully enjoyable, just to quote myself, but it's more like a tasteful candy or a sweet dessert; it's great but
||NoFX - NEVER TRUST A HIPPIE EP|
Fat Wreck Chords (May 24th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
NoFX's Official Website
1. Seeing Double at Triple Rock
2. The Marxist Brothers
3. Golden Boys
4. You're Wrong
5. Everything in Moderation (Especially Moderation)
6. I'm Going to Hell For This One
Oh well. 3 years ago, I was looking at the NoFX's "War on Errorism" CD for the first time and I was thinking: "Okay, can they get any worse at all? " So I just played the CD on my computer and suddenly felt like the guys finally did something great, after a couple of long years of stagnation and warmed up recipes of lame PunkRock songs. A couple of days ago I was looking at their newest EP; "Never Trust a Hippie" and I have to say that for the first time ever, I was having expectations about a NoFX CD. Okay, I'm not a huge NoFX fan, first of all. Anyway. This 6 songs EP can be considered as the foretaste of their upcoming full length release called "In Wolve's Clothing", or if you prefer, "an average collection of "decent" B-Sides and a couple of songs that are good enough to put on a real record". So, I don't think I'm gonna do sort of a "complete" review, since I don't really feel the need to do it. Check out "Golden Boys" and "Everything in Moderation..." that are probably my personal favourites. It's just too bad they're not going to be on the new record. For a "Separation of Church and Skate" rip-off, go for "Seeing Double at Triple Rock", for an old 7'' of the Month's club song just go for "You're Wrong", and for a "Super-Fat-Mike-Typical-Bass-Riff", "I,m Going to Hell for this One" is dedicated to you. The only song left, "The Marxist Brothers", is pretty boring, in my opinion. So, as the eternal optimist I've always been, I think it's WAY better not to trust a EP and just wait for the full length release to make up our minds. How I miss the good old NoFX back in 1994 !
||ANTI-FLAG - FOR BLOOD AND EMPIRE|
2006 (March 21st) on RCA Records/A-F Recordsl
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Anti-Flag's Official Website
1 - I'd Tell You But
2 - The Press Corpse
3 - Exodus
4 - Project For a New American Century
5 - Hymn For The Dead
6 - This is The End (For You My Friend)
7 - One Trillion Dollars
8 - State FuneralImbalanced
9 - Confessions of an Economic Hit Man
10 - War Sucks, Let's Party !
11 - The W.T.O. Kills Farmers
12 - Cities Burn
13 - Depleted Uranium is a War Crime
Finally, the high-awaited and highly spoken follow-up to 2003's Terror State saw it's hollow at the crossroads of the PunkRock history. Two years after what some called a "disaster" and some others claimed as a masterpiece, Anti-Flag is finally back on the map with their latest effort; For Blood and Empire. With their first step with RCA Records (Sony BMG), the Pittsburgh's pride has quite found a compromise between the fact of being on a major and sticking to their roots. As everyone thought that the guys were burned out and just sold out, the evidence shows in a ray of sparkles that Anti-Flag are still on the course and honest as they've always been. The evolution of the band through years fooled the dumbest beings making them think that they were going mainstream and that they only wanted to sell more CDs, now let me tell you that they sure will, but they damn sure deserve it.
Now let's talk about the CD itself. Harder, but not faster, I got to say that this is the logical following of The Terror State (2003), without being a warmed up meal stuffed into your mouth once again. Showing a huge self-improvement as individuals and as a band, the guys really nailed it I got to say. Gorgeous sing-alongs and steady Ska rhythms, fast and harsh Punk anthems, we got it all. Musically, I think it's a huge step forward, regarding the global evolution of the band. The guitar parts will show; Anti-Flag are getting better by the years. Chris #2 being loyal to himself once again, the album is filled with neat bass parts, and his harsh voice is completing the equation perfectly, once again. As some people tend to say that Justin's voice is getting old with years, I just wanted to say that the mixing of the CD and the instrumentations are making us forgetting about it quite fast. The whole CD flows from track 1 to track 13 like a fish in the sea, the incredible diversity shown between each song helps a whole lot, the production is neat, whoa. For the lovers of older years, "Depleted Uranium is a War Crime" and "State Funeral" will sure please you, as "This is the End (For You My Friend)" and "One Trillion Dollars" will make you sing along like you never did. Now let's talk about my personal favourites. As a huge Ska fan, I was overexcited to hear "The Press Corpse", a rare pace of A-F in the path of Ska soundings, and my surprise was doubled when I heard "The W.T.O. Kills Farmers", a slow and upbeat anthem to my (our?) rural reality, cause yeah, the W.T.O. is destroying all the basics of our local economy. As one of the best openers ever created by Anti-Flag for one of their CDs, "I'd Tell You But
" is hell of a nice song, setting the bridge between "One People, One Struggle" (The Terror State's last song) and what Anti-Flag is right now. A revival of some Underground Network's fast and heavy songs mixed with a really nice solo (hands down Justin!) and some nice lyrics, it's serious foretaste of what coming up. If I had to choose or pick only one song on the CD, as curious as it seems, I would pick "This is the End (For You My Friend)" without hesitation. Even though it's pretty much the "single hit" off the album and that it's clearly a commercial song, I just can't help but sing like a riot all the way through it.
Well, in conclusion, I think it's an A+ class CD, even though my expectations (regarding the singles "Antithetic to the Cure" and "This is What a Feminist Looks Like") haven't been totally fulfilled. It's now been a month or so since I got the promotional copy in my mailbox (thanks to A-F Records), and the casual listening of this record is still making me happy, which is a huge sign of a total accomplishment and the proof that Anti-Flag is still a great band. Most people will still say that they sold out, let me tell them to go fuck themselves right away, they're just a bunch of ignorants if you ask me. I won't give a lame "out of 10" note this time, I'll let you guys make up your mind by yourselves. Hands down to the guys, once again !
||HANDHELD - THE MARK WORNER EP / ALL WE COULD AFFORD DEMO
2003 (October 18th) on Independent Label
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
HandHeld's Official Website
THE MARK WORNER EP
1 - Diary
2 - Corrugated Ideas
3 - Free Port
4 - Dignified Response
5 - Last Step
6 - No Footsteps To Follow
ALL WE COULD AFFORD DEMO
1 - Imbalanced
2 - No Clue
3 - World Today (Gone Tomorrow)
Okay. Propably none of you guys have ever heard about "HandHeld", right ? So let me introduce them to you. Rocking the Kitchener area since 1998 with their fast and melodic punk rock and their contagieous lead guitars, it's just so bad that they're still being underdogs to the industry. Right at the first listening, I've been amazed by the way these guys are mixing aggressive punk rock with these so melodic harmonies. Their 4th official release, "The Mark Worner EP", once again released under an Independent Label, really shows an unexpected maturity for a punkrock band nowadays and so much freshness at the same time, it's pretty amazing, as the "All We Could Afford" demo they sent me too, shows 3 incredible songs that I can't stop listening to. Everybody here thinks I'm retarded cause I listen to the same 3 songs all day. Haha.
So let's talk a little bit more about "The Mark Worner EP", their latest effort. This CD, totally remembering me my good old days when I was younger and listening to some old-school punk with my friends between classes on the school's radio. Hard-hitting, fast and melodic, it's so cool to me to be blessed to finally hear something like that again without having to listen to my old punk records from the early and mid 90's I'm starting to get tired of. From wonderful basslines to the technical and aggressive dual lead guitars, everything seems to be calculated and I have to say that everything's fitting perfectly. Oh, and I can't talk about HandHeld without talking about the singer's voice. Whoa. Perfectly fitting, it looks like Andy Dietrich (vocalist) knows how to use his voice and he's so good at it. Sort of a mix of maybe Millencolin and Face to Face, his voice really finds his place here in the now-redundant punk rock industry. You really have to take look forward to hear "No Footsteps to Follow", "Diary", and "Dignified Response", that are, to me, the 3 major acts from this EP.
Now let's talk about the "All We Could Afford" demo that they sent me with their EP. Incredibly great too. Everything's amazing about this demo, except the fact that there's only 3 songs on it, 3 songs that aren't on any other of their releases. A must-have or a must-buy, if you ever have the chance to buy it. The first song, "Imbalanced", is driving me totally insane. Sort of a musical mix between No Use For A Name, LagWagon and maybe Face To Face, this song is on my daily playlist since I got it, 2-3 weeks ago. So kind and cute and so fast and aggressive at the same time, waow. "No Clue", the second song, is way more aggresive and maybe "darker", if I can say that. Pretty cool bassline, musically and technically really cool too. Then you get into "World Today (Gone Tomorrow)", harsh, aggressive, fast, sick. Really worked out vocal harmonies, gang vocal, fast and technical palm mutes, indeed, it's an excellent song. I'd love to talk of the songs for an hour, but I'm already done now. Hehe.
So. Now I have a little surprise for you guys. Because the Handheld guys are awesome and incredibly cool, I received more than one copy of their "All We Could Afford" demo. So here I go with a little contest. I have 3 extra copies to give away to the first 3 persons e-mailing me the title of their very first release. (Hint : Everything's on their website.) Will be added to the package some stickers, and my really rare and wanted lipstick kiss. Send me your mailing adress, your name, how you discovered Skaponk.com and for sure the answer to the question to email@example.com, giving your email the title "Handheld contest".
Don't miss your chance to see these guys live if you ever get a chance, go talk to them, they're really awesome.
Overall : 9/10
||PROPAGANDHI - POTEMKIN CITY LIMITS
2005 (October 18th) on
Fat Wreck Chords
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Propagandhi's Official Website
1 - A Speculative Fiction
2 - Fixed Frequencies
3 - Fedallah's Hearse
4 - Cut Into The Earth
5 - Bringer Of Greater Things
6 - Die Jugend Marschiert
7 - Rock For Sustainable Capitalism
8 - Impending Halfhead
9 - Life At Disconnect
10 - Name And Address Withheld
11 - Superbowl Patriot XXXVI
12 - Iteration
Well... Four long years of waiting since the release of the unquestionable masterpiece "Today's Empires, Tomorrow's Ashes", Propagandhi are finally back with their brand new effort; "Potemkin City Limits". I got the CD like a week ago or so, and I really wanted to wait before posting my review, just to give it some time to grow on me, but still today, it still haven't. We always saw evolution between each and every Propagandhi albums. In 1993, when they released "How to Clean Everything", we discovered a pure "Fat Wreck Band", then we got surprised by "Less Talk, More Rock" back in 1996 with more melodies, better guitar works, better lyrics, and a trashy side tending to emerge from their music. Then we got "Where Quantity is Job #1" (1998), sort of a recollection of b-sides, live performances and unreleased songs. Later, in 2001, we all received a serious kick in the ass when they released "Today's Empires, Tomorrow's Ashes", with their new bass guitar player, Todd Kowalski, bringing a very new dimension to their music with his harsh and dad-raping voice and his new influences. I still think that this was their best record ever, and if not, my favourite unless.
So, welcome in 2005, lots of things changed, and lots haven't. Chris Hannan being himself once again, you can expect awesome lyrics and incredible guitar riffs, mission accomplished. The very first thing you notice when you hear the CD is that his voice matured a lot. It's cleaner than ever, perfectly balanced, wow. The second thing you notice, unfortunately, no it's not heavier than "TETA". I'm a part of the people that were waiting for a total trash album with more dirty chords and blasphemy words, I have to admit. Even though it's still a pretty great album, the thing I'm a bit letdown of is for sure the lack of edgy hardcore parts of "Today's Empires ... ", with Todd singing like an interned and Chris shredding his guitar like a riot. We sure got a really mature album. Everything's perfectly fitting, each note is placed where she belongs to, drum parts are simply perfect, I have nothing to say against the technical aspects of the album. It's brilliantly produced; you can really see the genius of these 3 guys all along the CD. Songs like "Name and Address Withheld" and "Die Juegend Marschiert" are true reminders of the "Less Talk, More Rock" era, as "Impending HalfHead", "SuperBowl Patriot", "Fedallah's Hearse" bring us back to the "Today's Empires
" days. But actually, the greatness of this CD is all about the other songs. The opener, "A Speculative Fiction", is one of the most brilliant openers I've been allowed to hear. 4:14 length, you really feel like there's something big going on. Then, right after, you jump into "Fixed Frequencies", probably their nicest vocal harmonies ever, a real slow song, getting faster slowly, quietly, bringing you back to a gorgeous melody, and bringing you half-hypnotised to the next song. Another thing too, Todd can sing. He can sure damn do it pretty well too. "Cut into the Earth" is the best proof. Another slow song, but whoa... One of the nicest songs off the album, "Rock for Sustainable Capitalism", an evident blink of an eye to Fat Mike (Fat Wreck Chords), quoting "When did Punk Rock become so safe?" from NoFX's latest album "War on Errorism", contains the weirdest scream ever (1:34), look forward to hear that, that's
something. I can't talk about "Potemkin City Limits" without mentioning anything about the closer, "Iteration". Not as "complete" as "Purina Hall of Fame" (Today's Empires
) if you ask me, but once again, they nailed it.
So, in conclusion, as I can't say I'm plenty happy with this record, I have to say it's an excellent album. It's musically -and lyrically- perfect. As I said before, I was really looking for the "logical" follow-up to "Today's Empires
", so yeah, I had some problems getting into it as some friends of mine liked it at the first listening. Taking in retrospect all their previous releases, this CD will for sure make everyone happy. They gathered all their strong points together and dropped everything else, to finally nail an awesome record that we'll still be listening in a decade I guess. Thumbs up to Chris, Todd and Jord, once again.
And FUCK THE BORDER.
Overall : 8.5/10
||THE FLATLINERS - DESTROY TO CREATE
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
The Flatliners Official Website
2. Fred's Got Slacks
3. There's a Problem
4. Public Service Announcement
5. Bad News
6. My Hands are Tied
8. Scum Punch
9. I am abandoned
10. Macoretta Boozer
11. Broken Bones
12. Quality Television
13. Do or Die
Freshly out of high school, these young guys from Toronto ripped the Ontarian scene since 2002, bringing to people's ears their brand new kind of PunkSka, or "Skunk Rawk", for the purists. From the nicest two-tone ska verses to their harsh and eclectic PunkRock choruses, their 3rd release totally ripped me.
As the Ska scene tends to fade away and the gaymo universal passion never stops to grow and invade the music industry, The Flatliners really brings a fresh breeze over this total mess, sweeping away the wreckage of the early 2000's Punk scene to take their own place down here and standing out as kings. 2005 was a great year for PunkSka I have to say. After one of the most brilliant releases ever by The Suicide Machines, the discover of The FlatLiners totally ties the buckle. An awesome mix of two-tone ska melodies and punk choruses, bright lyrics, and a surprising maturity - considering that they just stopped dirtying their diapers - that you will discover when you'll give a listen to this album. You're probably wondering "Why the f*** is Skunk Rawk?" Me too. Here's what we can find on their official site:
- Skunk*Rawk -
n. pl. Skunks*Rawkssssx or Skunk*Rawk*can*not*be *plu*ra*lized
1. The combination of two-tone ska and brain hemorrhaging punk rock.
2. A lethal dose of "fuck you up" music.
3. The way in which you will be killed. ie. "Skunk Rawk actually killed me... How can music do that?!"
Cool. Let's talk about the songs now. I actually can't choose or name my favorite, but after seeing them live, I have to admit that "Fred's Got Slacks" and "There's a Problem" are pretty much the best ones out of the album. Fast, dirty, the nirvana. Not Punk enough for you? Okay. Try "My Hands Are Tied" and try not to shake your head ! You feel old-school today ? Alright. "Macoretta Boozer" and "Scumpunch!" are for you. A brilliant mix of old-school PunkSka and more actual two-tone ska, this song rapes your dad (and I did too by the way). "Do or Die", the closer, is simply awesome. Way slower than the rest of the album, but still pretty genius in it's lyrics and it's overall melody.
The CD has recently released in the US and via Interpunk.com, so there's no more reason good enough not to buy this awesome CD. They have some dates coming up, check out the venues and don't miss your chance to catch them live somewhere, it's .. something.
For the fans of Suicide Machines, Operation Ivy, The Clash and Rancid. Hands down guys !
Overall : 9.5/10 !!.
||INQUISITION - REVOLUTION .. I THINK IT'S CALLED INSPIRATION
October 2005 on
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
"Revolution .. I think it's Called Inspiration" isn't a new album at all. Yeah, actually this masterpiece is a reissue. The first thing you'll notice by listening this CD is "The voice sounds a lot like Strike Anywhere!". Yeah, this voice is Thomas from Strike Anywhere. INQUISITION actually influenced a lot of bands back in the day, when they released this CD for the very first time. Former members are now in Strike Anywhere (Thomas), Ann Beretta (Rob) and River City High (Mark). By the way, the band "Strike Anywhere" gots it's name from an INQUISITION song called the same. From the very first chord I heard, I knew I was going to have a good day.
1 - Pulse
2 - Mute
3 - Fuse
4 - Idle Kids
5 - Hotel X (Idle Kids Part II)
6 - Warning
7 - Uproar
8 - We Got A Bomb
9 - Open Letter
10 - Strike Anywhere
11 - Doubting Thomas
12 - Greta Berkman Vs. The City
13 - Cop Song
14 - Bulletproof
Now let's talk about their music. Back in the day, I have to say that their music was a big step forward for the PunkRock scene in general. More technical and melodic than a lot of bands at this time, this CD is still pretty actual and great even nowadays. Songs like "Pulse", "Mute", "Idle Kids" and "Uproar" really got me at the very first listening. My favorite song is for sure the one called "Strike Anywhere", it's a pretty fast and melodic song, with a harsh and catchy chorus, thumbs up.
All along the CD, you'll discover a band that is still pretty singular by it's style. Even today, I have to say that no band can pretend to do stuff like INQUISITION did. For sure, Strike Anywhere refers a lot, considering that it's the same singer, but you can't really say that they nailed it as INQUISITION did it a decade ago. Fast, energic, melodic, this CD shows a lot of positiveness in the music lines, just like the mood of the CD is pretty different than the "anger-hate-tragedy" actual form of PunkRock. Amazing bass lines, catchy choruses, fast verses, I'm so sad I've never heard of them before I received this masterpiece in my mailbox.
So, for the fans of "old-school" PunkRock, of simply for the fans of good old Punk n' Roll, this is a must. You can listen to some of the stuff on their MySpace page (www.myspace.com/inquisition) and get fulfilled enough to wait for this piece of gold to be officially released !
Some comments from some guys you might know :
"A band like Inquisition made a dent in the underground punk community in their heyday, when they should have been a full blown car crash." -Tim Barry (AVAIL)
"Very few things will leave as lasting an impression on me as the first chord of the first song I heard by them." -Jason Black (HOT WATER MUSIC)
"Inquisition had it all, the energy, the desperation, political lyrics, it was all there and it got me so psyched." -Tim (ENSIGN)
"I thought they were what punk rock should sound like." - Pat Thetic (ANTI-FLAG)
My note : A good-old golden 9/10.
||BEDOUIN SONDCLASH - SOUNDING A MOSAIC
2004 (April 27th) on
Union Label Group (Stomp Records)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
1 - When The Night Feels My Song
2 - Shelter
3 - Living In Jungles
4 - Money Worries feat. Vernon Maytone
5 - Gyasi Went Home
6 - Shadow of A Man
7 - Jeb Rand
8 - Criminal
9 - Murder On The Midnight Wire
10 - Music My Rock
11 - Rude Boy Don't Cry
12 - Immigrant WorkForce
13 - Nothing To Say
14 - Money Worries (E-Clair Refix)
14 - Rude Boy Abroad (Lazare Breakdub)
"Awesome". This is the first word that comes out of my mouth when I have to talk about this record. Straight from the sweet Vancouver, these 3 guys are giving me the shivers. Brilliantly wrecking the line between Reggae and Dub music, the CD "Sounding A Mosaic", entirely recorded in Montreal, is one of the best things I've been allowed to hear in my entire life.
Strangely, the guy that produced this sweet and cheesy record is the well-known Darryl Jenifer from the Bad Brains. I'm actually beating my head against the wall as I'm trying to find out my favorite songs from this CD. Each and every single song has something different with the others, a different vibe, another mood, another tempo .. From slow upbeat Reggae to old-school Dub/Ska Reggae, the guys really redefine the entire genre, as no one succeeded at doing something as good or better than Bob Marley and the Wailers since Sublime did a couple of years ago. "When The Night Feels My Song", the first single, the first song of the record, gives you a great idea of what's going on. The incredible Jay Malinowski's voice kicks in and rapes your whole world with it's amazing singularity. Then "Shelter" starts. I first thought this song was "Okay", but when the chorus starts, "okay" loses all it's meanings. It's more like "OH YEAH". With the Eon Sinclair's bass guitar rocking hard the Casbah, this song is probably my favorite I'd say. A bit faster, and more like old-school Dub/Ska, this is a masterpiece. I can't review this CD without talking about "Money Worries". An anthem of the "Bob Marley and the Wailers" good old days, smooth, guitar upstrokes .. This song is predisposed to make me smoke weird tobacco. I can't forget "Gyasi Went Home", that makes me feel like the sunset somewhere in the Jungle, surrounded by apes and gentle lions, this song could have been used for the Lion King's soundtrack. Awesome. Other excellent songs : "Jeb Rand", "Rude Boy Don't Cry", and "Murder on The MidNight Wire". Check out the two remixes at the end of the CD, they're amazing.
Whoa. Go buy this CD, now. So far I can't really find the way to bring this review to an end, there's too much to say about this CD, so I'll just shut my mouth right now.
Overall : 10/10.
||VOODOO GLOW SKULLS - ADDICCION, TRADICION, REVOLUCION
2005 (August) on
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Voodoo Glow Skulls Official Website
1 - Ghettoblaster
2 - Addiccion, Tradicion, Revolucion
3 - Mayhem and Murder
4 - Smile Now, Cry Later
5 - DD Don't Like Ska
6 - Dia De Los Muertes
7 - Eville
8 - Cochino
9 - Disaster
10 - Musical Pollution
11 - We Represent
12 - Enter The Dragon
13 - Bastard Music
14 - Used To Love Her
Another record I was waiting for so long .. As I thought that "Band Geek Mafia" was the shit, "Firme" drove me crazy like I never used to. I was like "Whoa, that's a perfect CD, nothing can beat it!". Then "Steady As She Goes" went out and it kicked my ass seriously. My expectations, like you probably already guessed, were pretty high for "Addicion, Tradicion, Revolucion" . Have I been disappointed ? Or fulfilled ? I'm not sure. It could have been way better if it haven't been released on Victory, cause actually like all the other Victory Records bands, the sound and the mixing sucks (Except for Steady As She Goes that was brilliantly recorded actually). Sometimes you feel like it's a huge melting pot of sounds and you can't retrace what's going on as well as "Steady As She Goes" was a pure gold monument of recording.
Musically, I have to say that this CD is great. Okay, it's a Voodoo Glow Skulls CD, and you can see it after 10 seconds listening to the record, when the Eddie's guitar kicks in and the Jerry's (Drums) big paws are hurting the drumset. Once again, the Casillas bros sticked to their habits of rocking hard. I actually thought they were about to record something "new" or at least different, like every other bands are tending to do nowadays, but they didn't. I'm happy about it and I'm disappointed at the same time. Some songs like "Ghettoblaster", "Musical Pollution", "We Represent" and "Bastard Music" are really powerful, but nothing compared to some masterpieces from "Steady as She Goes". But actually, "DD Don't Like Ska" and "Smile Now, Cry Later" are tending to be my favorites off this CD. More reggae-influenced and really slow, they're awesome. Unfortunately, the recording and the mixing doesn't give to Voodoo Glow Skulls the power and the aggressivity that they probably wanted to show (as usual). I guess it's so bad, I miss Epitaph a lot.
So, for the die-hard fans, feel no shame on buying this CD, it's a great buy for sure. For the explorators, maybe you'd be better of trying "Steady as She Goes" or "Firme" to see how powerful and trashy can be the Skulls.
Overall : 8/10.
||SUICIDE MACHINES - WAR PROFITEERING IS KILLING US ALL
2005 (August 9th) on
Side One Dummy Records
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Suicide Machine's Official Website
1 - War Profiteering is Killing Us All
2 - Capitalist Suicide
3 - Ghosts on Sunset Boulevard
4 - Junk
5 - 17% 18 to 25
6 - Capsule: AKA - Requiem For The Stupid Human Race
7 - All Systems Fail
8 - The Red Flag
9 - Nuclear Generators
10 - Bottomed Out
11 - Revolution is on the Clearance Rack
12 - Hands Tied
13 - I Went on Tour For 10 Years
And All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt
With their 6th studio album, the Suicide Machines are back two years after "A Match and some Gasoline" with their brand new effort; "War Profiteering is Killing us All". As the obvious continuation of "A Match.."(2003), this record is probably their best ever. Heavy, loud and fast as the Suicide Machines have always been, they still mix dirty and hardcore-ish Punk Rock with Ska like no other bands. The listening of this CD ( at least twice a day since I got it ) makes me feel like they finally found who they are as individuals and what they want as a band. The politically-charged contents of this CD plus their ability to make songs so great-sounding proves it. A powerful but short (about 30 minutes) mix of 14 battle hymns filled with awesome vocal parts, killer bass lines, technical drum accents and starring the king of Ska Anthems; Dan Lukacinsky, it's Detroit's scene at it's finest.
As usual, a Suicide Machines CD is a mix of Punk Rock, HardCore and Ska, and this is probably why I'm following this band since they began, or almost. No surprise here; this is what we got. From the hardest and heaviest songs to the up-beat and voluptuous Ska/Reggae-influenced tunes, this record is an honest reflection of the US actual disease and a fuckin' statement to the Punk Scene : Emo will never count them into his harming hands. Thanks Jesus. This band kinda changed with the years, as their line-up did too. Fortunately, these changes haven't disturbed their evolution at all. From "Destruction by Definition" (1996), to "A Match And Some Gasoline" (2003), you can feel the maturity the guys got from touring and writing more and more songs, before finally finding the perfect recipe for rocking; "War Profiteering is Killing us All".
My favorite song is actually "Capsule". God dammit. This song is so great. Starts like a lot of the other Suicide Machines songs; fast and eclectic punk rock with Jason Navarro's incredible voice. Then everything turns to destruction; loud and slow Hardcore with heavy breakdowns, and a killer dirty old-school ska part, simply awesome. Plus the title of this song is plenty honest and so true, according to the lyrics of the song. (Capsule AKA - Requiem for the Stupid Human Race) There's actually a lot of songs I just can't get enough, like "War Profiteering is Killing us All", one of the most amazing openers I've been allowed to hear until today. Sort of a revival of "A Match and Some Gasoline", this song is simply great. "17% 18 to 25", a song about the last US Presidential Elections and the people voting or not is another of my favourites songs; "YEAHHHH FUCK THIS WORLD !"; fast and harsh, dammit. Another masterpiece; "Revolution is on the Clearance Rack". 2 minutes of intense screaming and an amazing bass line, terrible ! For the Ska/Reggae lovers, don't worry, there's lots of great stuff for you too. As "Capitalist Suicide" sounds a lot like their older stuff, "I Went On Tour For 10 Years .. And All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt" is actually one of their best "slower" songs. Reggae up-beat verses, slow hardcore choruses, the perfect mix if you ask me. "Junk", the 4th song, the most flagrant revival of the Suicide Machines good old days, is an awesome song too. I tell you, the entire CD is awesome. They even kept their "poppy-punk rock" influences on certain songs, like "The Red Flag", "Ghosts on Sunset Boulevard" and "Bottomed Out" that are anthems to all the sing along songs they have made earlier in their career.
As you succeeded reading this whole brick of useless words, you now deserve a little gift; you can
STREAM THE WHOLE CD for your enjoyment !
Go to your favourite Record Store, and buy this CD, you won't get disappointed at all ! This CD now wears the "2005 Record of the Year's" golden Belt. Thumbs up to the guys !!
Overall : 10/10 !!.
||A WILHELM SCREAM - RUINER
Nitro Records (August 16th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
A Wilhelm Scream's Official Website
1. The King Is Dead
3. The Pool
4. The Soft Sell
5. God Loves A Liar
6. In Vino Veritas II
7. Me Vs. Morrissey In The Pretentiousness Contest (The Ladder Match)
9. The Kids Can Eat A Bag Of Dicks
10. When I Was Alive: Walden III
11. Mercy Day For Mr. Vengeance
12. Less Bright Eyes, More Deicide
13. Speed Of Dark
14. Cancer Dream
The second A Wilhelm Scream's release, Ruiner, needs to be a statement. They are the future of PunkRock, as Belvedere died lately. Amongst the wreckage of the scene that actual bands have settled by selling out or by disappearing survives A Wilhelm Scream, all alone in their little world. From the old days when they were called Smackin' Isaiah, to now, they still rock .. differently .. but they still. I was really nervous when Belvedere died to see what AWS were going to put out, cause actually they're the only two "new" bands I can see as future punk ambassadors.
The King Is Dead
Okay. First important point: The opener. This one is great, but not as much as Mute Print used to be on the last album. For some reason, The King Is Dead sounds more like noise to me .. The intro is a bit too long and repetitive, and then .. The songs kicks in but even after lots of listenings it's still not growing on me.
Apparently the first single, this is an awesome song. The guitar work is simply magic. The chorus, with the "KILLING IT ! KILLING IT!" part is gorgeous. This song is better than a lot of their older stuff I used to cherish over the years, thumbs up.
D'uh. This is what sometimes makes me uncertain about my feelings for this band. Sometimes the guitar parts mixed with the Nuno's vocals are sounding so lame and lacks of power it's terrible. For some reason, even if it's fast, technical and melodic, this song isn't doing it for me at all.
The Soft Sell
A punch right in your face, it starts pretty heavy, but then it goes slower and the song kinda loses his charms. You don't expect a song that starts that hard to become soooo mellow and quiet .. Anyway. This is an excellent slow song, but you all know I don't really like slow songs.
God Loves A Liar
Not much to say here. An average song. Maybe for a B-Side, but actually they can do a lot better.
In Vino Veritas II
Probably the worst song they will ever do in their career. Sounds like a crappy Emo band trying too hard to be cute .. Sometimes I wonder if this song's not just a joke or something, cause it's too awful to be A Wilhelm Scream.
Me Vs. Morrissey In The Pretentiousness Contest (The Ladder Match)
What a pleasure to get back into AWS's world, filled with speed and rock n' roll. This song is pretty good, but once again, I'm feeling like I'm listening to Mute Print at some times in the song ..
Another average song. There's really something missing throughout this CD. All along you feel like "It's great" but the more you listen, the more you're like "It's great, but not that much".
The Kids Can Eat A Bag Of Dick
Fuck yeah. That's the kind of songs I like. This one is pretty great. The vocals in the verses are awesome, and the sort of chorus is nice too. Too much back vocals ..
When I Was Alive: Walden III
Averageness is the limit on this CD, the peak to reach; the half of their greatness. This song is another sample of that. Half-Power, Half-Aggressivity, Half-Anger, Half-Fulfilled reviewer and die-hard fan.
Mercy Day For Mr. Vengeance
The In Vino Veritas II's twin. Slow and lame.
Less Bright Eyes, More Deicide
Ah, this one's better, at least !! I pretty much enjoy the intro riff, and the continuity of it into the verse, and the way it flows through the chorus with the "I'm losing it .. I'm losing it" parts. I'd give a 7 out of 10 to this one.
Speed of Dark
That's another pretty rad song, but what's the point of having two guitarists and make them play the same thing at same time all along the CD ? I mean, they play like an octave lower and higher, but it's still the same riff through all the album, it's becoming annoying I have to say.
Hmmmmm ... Another guitar riff as an intro, another song sounding the same as the other ones, another deception.
Dammit. I'm so sad about what I said. I wish I could have said that this record is the best 2005 release and that the band made it better than Mute Print and stuff .. But I can't say it's worst or better, cause it's simply the same thing. I explain. First; let's talk about guitars. Okay, two excellent guitarists, playing pretty cool riffs, but sometimes it's just too much it's getting lame. Plus they always play the same riff, it's just like too much peanut butter on your toasts, it sticks in the throat. Second; it looks like they have already exploited all their ressources as a band. Their melodies and harmonies are all having something related to other ones, just like there's only one track on the CD. So, uh, for the fans, this is not a bad CD, I actually love to listen to it while I'm doing something else or just driving, but if you want to really get into their music, try Mute Print it's a lot better. It's just too bad cause the CD starts so great with Killing It that rocks my whole world everyday, but as the CD plays, I always lose interest and finally put back something else. But don't get me wrong, this is not a "bad" record. I actually thought they were going to release something "better" than Mute Print, but actually every fan I spoke with were amazed by the CD, so I guess maybe I have too much expectations .. But anyway, listen to the CD and see !!
Overall : 7/10.
||DAZE - ENERGY
2004 (?) on
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Daze's Official Website
1 - My Favorite Sound
2 - Melody Flow
3 - Mary 2
4 - Save Me
5 - Energy
Straight from the good old NYC, Daze is another of my great discovers so far this year. Pure hazard sometimes makes life better. Strange story - happy ending. While Fred and I were waiting in the parking lot for the Warped Tour to begin, two guys hooked us, wanting us to listen to their CD. So we talked a lil' bit about Pirate Handshakes, and we finally listened their record. First time I was like "Dammit, another stupid Emo band .. that sucks !" .. Then the guy stopped it and opened his player .. "Oh, that wasn't our CD!" ..Anyway. I pretty much loved it at the first time, so I promised I'll be reviewing it on the website. So here I am. (By the Way, the display image of the CD art cover isn't the CD I'm reviewing here, it's "Fresh Red", their full length, and it rocks too.)
I wish I knew them before, this CD is pretty good. Brilliantly blending Rock n' Roll and PunkRock into catchy and enjoyable melodies, this record is really great. The 3 guys have a really great musicianship I have to say. The music doesn't sound like anything else, which is kinda awesome nowadays. Actually, trios are tending to get out of new ideas, of new riffs, but Daze isn't a part of "those" trios. I love the voice melodies a lot. That's cool to hear something new in 2005, cause actually this year is sort of a 2004 revival I have to say. These guys are born to rock. Don't be shy, if you see their name on a flyer or see one of their records, try them !
Go to their MySpace or PureVolume page to hear their cool stuff, and make sure to visit their website and sign their guestbook !!
Overall : 8/10.
||PENNYWISE - THE FUSE
Epitaph Records (August 9th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Pennywise's Official Website
1- Knocked Down
2- Yell Out
3- Competition Song
4- Take A Look Around
6- 6th Avenue NightMare
7- The Kids
8- Fox TV
9- Stand Up
12- Premeditated Murder
13- Best I Can
14- 18 Soldiers
First of all, ''The Fuse'' isn't released yet, so here's probably the first complete review of this CD ever written ! With their 8th full-length, the guys are for sure not reinventing PunkRock, but who'll be surprised ? Actually, Pennywise is probably the band that sticked the most to his style over the years (they founded PW in 1988), which is maybe not the best thing, except for their die-hard fans. Let's talk about the new stuff now. This new CD is such a great record I'd say. Nothing really new for sure, but it's way better than ''Ashes'' (2003) and approximately as good as ''Land of the Free'' (2001) in my opinion. As usual, there's some great songs, and some weak songs, but the PW guys get us used to that over the years anyway.
This song is kinda great as an opener for this album. This song sounds more like the ''new years'' Pennywise sound; half-speed, half-power, not too much technical guitar work, but this song's still great anyway. The bridge sucks I have to say .. You will probably, just like me, get tired of the line ''When will you fall?'' as long as the song never seems to end !
Ho, now we got something really cool. That sounds like their old stuff; faster, better. This is the return of the ''Woo-ho-ho-hoo's'', which is great. Fast and palm-muted verses like we love them, a sing-along chorus, fuck yeah, I love this one.
Another great song. Not as good as ''Yell Out'', but it's easy to listen I'd say. Not too fast, not too slow .. But there's a lot of better stuff on this album. ''We compete until we die, even though we don't know why'' , that's funny I'd say.
Take A Look Around
First time I listened to that song, I was schocked. That's fuckin' great. But as I listened to it over and over, I realised why. I'm a huge Voodoo Glow Skulls fan, and the verse is exactly (or almost) the same as ''Give Me Someone I can Trust'' (Steady as She Goes, 2003). But this is a great song anyway, except the chorus, where the voice seems a little bit off-sound, just like the voice note doesn't fit in with the music, but it's probably meant to be this way. Great song.
Not much to say about this song. Another PW ''freedom-related'' song, a bit too slow for me, but everything's always too slow to me. This song's much a filler than anything else.
6th Avenue NightMare
The biggest problem I found with this album is that the choruses are often a bit weak compared to the rest of the song. That's the proof here. The verse is fast with a huge punkrock drum line, and then you go through the chorus and the song goes down. This is not a ''problem'' or a ''lack'' or whatever, I just don't love that. Really nice Old-School guitar solo, nice job Fletcher !
Probably the worst song in my opinion. Except the guitar work is really nice and fits in perfectly. But I hate PW's slow songs. PW is meant to be fast and aggressive, this is street-punk baby ! The chorus is pathetic ..
Fuck Yeah!. On my Top 3, this song rocks. The intro is really nice. The drum line is tight and fits in quite well. Not as fast as my usually favorites PW's songs, but I live the mood of the song. And once again, good job Fletcher !
Great intro. The verses are kinda special, I love them. It's slow, and ''darkish'', and then you get the pre-chorus, WAY faster and really nice. I love the back vocals all along the song, nice work!
The only song with a technical bass guitar line, that's kinda cool. It's just too bad the song isn't that good. It's not bad, but it could have been way better with a bit more speed and more guitars.
Oh yeah. Fast verse, nice chorus with a huge sing along melody, I love that song. On my top 3.
Great song too. A song about the mass-destruction weapons. The chorus gets annoying when you listen to the song a couple of times. I don't like a lot the two-worded choruses, but anyway.
Best I Can
THE best song on the CD. The intro is hard as a rock, the guitar work is HUGE. Then the verse is fast, as we love them to be, with palm-muted guitar power chords (as usual heh), and then the chorus kicks in at a speed high enough to keep the mood of the song; Skate-Punk at it's finest. ''Cause I'm doing the best I can, to find out a master-plaaaaan''. Oh yeah. This song is on my favorites list of all PW songs over the years. (?w!t?f!) Let's sing !!!
Another filler, except that it's a great filler. The chorus melody is pretty good. Funny guitar riff. But as every songs about war are tending to be kinda lame, this song does too. (?w!t?f!) Let's sing !!!
Slow. Slow. Slow closer. I don't know why so much albums lately have a lame and slow closer. I mean, as a closer, I want something powerful as an opener, to let me go with a better impression .. Anyway. For the dance-hall slow dancers, let's light up the candles and dance !
Overall, I have to say that this CD is pretty great. Not as good as their first releases when Jason Thirsk was doing bass guitar (before he died heh), but you can put this CD on and let it play and it flows really great. The guitar work is constant all along the CD, Fletcher is not a famous guitarist or whatever, but his work fits in perfectly with the PW style and he kinda gets his own style, so thumbs up to Fletcher that sticked up making us skating all over the years. Nice drum work too, just like Fletcher, Byron isn't a famous drummer either, but his work does it. As usual, the Jim Lindberg's monochrome voice tends to be annoying, because it always sounds the same, but that's the PW trademark heh. ''Best I Can'' is for sure the best song on this CD, just this song worths the cost of buying the CD, this song is awesome. So, for a PW record, that is really great overall, considering that PW will probably never change, that their style kinda get over used with the years, but they still put out some excellent songs, even if the ''mid-quality'' songs ratio tends to raise, this CD deserves :.
Overall : 8/10.
||NO USE FOR A NAME - KEEP THEM CONFUSED
Fat Wreck Chords (June 14th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
No Use For A Name's Official Website
1. Part Two
2. There Will be Revenge
3. For Fiona
4. Check For A Pulse
5. Divine LetDown
6. Black Box
8. Falling is Easier (Part Three)
10. It's Tragic
11. Killing Time
12. Slowly Fading Fast
Okay, first of all. For the one's waiting for something like ''More Betterness'', ''Making Friends'' or ''Hard Rock Bottom'', stop dreaming, it isn't. Their 7th full length release, ''Keep Them Confused'' is some kind of a continuity of their decline. And they still fall lower and lower in the harming hands of Emo-Poppy PunkRock, with catchy riffs and cheesy lyrics. As usual, Tony Sly comes up with simple and sing-along songs, denuded of originality, complexity, it's complacency at it's finest expression. This CD is W-E-A-K, except for maybe one or two songs that aren't that bad.
Probably the only song that can fit as the opener. It starts kinda directly, no intro with lame sound effects or whatever, this is a great song. The guitar riff is okay, as the CD starts, we already know what we're about to go through; another No Use For A Name CD.
There Will be Revenge
No power, no attractiveness. The chorus sounds a lot like an Ataris song, the vocal mixing sounds a lot like Chris Roe(The Ataris singer) in the choruses. This is lame.
The first single off the CD, dammit. The PunkRock Scene is on a jog through hell I tell you. Where is this gonna stop ? Anyway. This song is boring, period. That's so cheesy ! I guess my little sister will probably love this song a lot, but I can't stand listening it.
Check For A Pulse
The intro is lame, but when the song starts, we discover the fastest drum line of the CD, which is encouraging, regarding that we're only at the 4th track. This song sounds like some old stuff, and there's a line, somewhere in the verse, that sounds EXACTLY like the line ''You'll never see the child, that was forced to be a man'' (Why Doesn't Anybody Like Me?) .. Anyway.
Drum synth intro, announcing .. an 1:41 minutes acoustic song! Fuck yeah ! Thanks ! They curtained the suffering.
That kind of song I will not go too far in my ideas, cause there's nothing to say about it, cause everything have been already said for the other songs. (I mean that it sounds the same.) The chorus is DANGEROUSLY cheezy, Kraft Dinner looks like a fish plate compared to that.
The ''Check For A Pulse'' twin, with the exact same drum line, or almost. Then it goes this way again and again ''ti ta ti ta ti ta ti ta ti ta ti ta''.
Falling is Easier (Part Three)
What's the deal when you have a Part Two, a Part Three, but no Part One ? Oh, it's some kind of an interlude !!! Totally useless.
This song is great. The guitar riff is kinda cool I guess.But as usual, the verse destroys the song. This song without verses could be fuckin' rad actually.
Oh ! A ''Making Friends'' revival !! Powerful chorus with nice verses, the best song of the CD I think. A fuckin' great sing along song, I love it.
Slowly Fading Fast
Back to hell, our Emo PunkRockers bring us to another step lower with that lame poppy song. 4 Chords is more than enough to make little girls cry I guess. With the Hawthorne Height's-likeish back vocals on the chorus, that's funny.
Because a closer song must be a huge sing along and a cheese macaroni anthem, there you go my friends ! (?w!t?f!) Let's sing !!!
Okay. Now you're settled, you can try listening this CD, but be careful, it may be hazardous to your life .. Or your hapiness state. Overall, it's still a NUFAN CD. I actually don't know how the die-hard NUFAN fan's feel about this release, but all I know, is that I almost fell asleep while trying to find some PunkRock into this PunkRock band record. Maybe my little sister should know more than me how to appreciate, but it's not doing it for me, at all. This is actually an honest insult to their fans.
So here I go with my final overall note:
Overall : 5/10.
||ALKALINE TRIO - CRIMSON
Vagrant Records (May 24th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Alkaline Trio's Official Website
1. Time To Waste
2. The Poison
4. Mercy Me
6. Settle For Satin
8. Fall Victim
9. I Was A Prayer
10. Prevent This Tragedy
11. Back to Hell
12. Your Neck
Okay, first, this is an Alkaline Trio CD. So this CD still sounds like the Trio always sounded; a bit poppy and cheesy punkrock, with great lyrics and nice melodies. This is an excellent CD I have to say, even if it's not really what I was waiting for .. Just like too many other bands, they felt to the darkside of the lights and this CD is much more melancholic and dark than their previous releases, but keeping their cheesy style, that's doing a great mix overall anyway !
Time To Waste
This is the first single off from the album. This is such a great song. The piano notes kinda reminds me of something I already know, but I can't name it .. Anyway. Nice drumming job, great intensity. Not their best single ever, but it's still great ! "Eyes roll back turn white in time to feed, they salivate in hunger. For you and everything they need to make a death complete." You know what I meant when I said "darker" ? My note : 7.5/10
One of my favorites. The guitar riff is simply nice. I just love the way Dan makes the Alkaline Trio songs sound better. The melody in this song is crazy. The chorus is highly addictive. Really poppy, it reminds me of some old Rock n' Roll sometimes .. Damn great. My note : 9/10
Slow song. Really slow. Not much to say about it, it fills the album I'd say. This song is really missing something I can't identify .. Ah yeah .. Power. Anyway. 6.5/10
Another really poppy song. I love. The thing that makes Alkaline Trio so good to me is the way they put out poppy songs that sounds fuckin' great. "Oh, mercy me. God bless catastrophe!". This song really got the hook. 8/10
The first verse sounds like an old Disco record, then it turns to sort of a classic Emo pre-chorus, and the chorus bring us back to Pop-PunkRock. This song is kind of a great mix, that's great. The chorus melody is really great too. 7/10
Settle for Satin
Boah. Great, not awesome. Fits in. 6.6/10
The most boring thing I've ever been allowed to hear, after Taking Back Sunday, for sure. This song is lame. 4/10.
Fortunately, this song kick Sadie's butt away and bring us back to our main interest; PunkRock. This song is another really cheesy one, but it still sounds great. Maybe a little bit too slow, but you get used to it. 6.5/10
I Was A Prayer
Another one of my favorites. Lyrics are awesome. Everytime Dan"s singing, I can't stand remaining silent. I'd like to know the lyrics and sing along like a dumb everywhere in the house.The chorus is gorgeous. "I'm out the door with apathy but I'm coming home with sympathy". Damn great. 9/10
Prevent This Tragedy
First of all : Violins and PunkRock doesn't fit together. It just sucks. The chorus is really really sounding like "We've Had Enough" from their previous album. But anyway, the violin's intro made me puke and I missed the rest of the song, sorry ! Nice song though. 7/10
Back to Hell
This is MY song. Fast, intense, heavy rock title. Far the best of the album to me, even if The Poison is such a kick ass song ! 9/10
Not much to say about this one. Another blank filler ? That's good, but that's it. 6.5/10
Monumental closer !!! This is awesome. Crazy synth job ! Sounds like an old classic rock you can't get out of your head. Excellent closer, as I said. 8/10
So, uh. The thing with the Trio is that all the songs kinda sound the same. Matt Skiba's songs are getting lame with time, it's sad. This CD is kinda splitted in two parts; Alkaline Trio Old & New .. You have some songs that are genius and some other are simply lame as a lot of Punk bands are tending to. I heard a lot of influences from the 80's and the 90's with Synth in "Smoke" or the melody of "The Poison", which is great. You see they worked hard on this album, maybe too hard I'd say. Actually, I feel the same way for Crimson that how I felt for Faso Latido (A Static Lullaby); such a great record, great musical improvement and good work on the voices, but this is not what I was waiting from these guys. You see ? Interesting fact : There's some video footage of the recording of the album on the CD, as an enhanced CD, that's kinda cool.
Overall : 7.5/10.
||A STATIC LULLABY - FASO LATIDO|
Columbia Records (April 5th)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
A Static Lullaby's Official Website
2. Smooth Modulator
3. Stand Up
4. Radio Flyer's Last Journey
5. Cash Cowbell
6. Half-Man; Half-Shark Equals One Complete Gentlemen
8. Calmer Than You Are
9. Faso Latido
10. God Bless You (God Damnit)
11. Marylin Monrobot
12.Modern Day Fire
13.The Jesus Haircut
Okay so here we go. First of all, I've been highly disappointed by the first listening I gave to this record. Why ? I'm a huge ASL fan from long times and even without being an Emo/Screamo/Whatever-you-call-it fan, I always loved the ASL music. Because ASL were still apart from the rest of the industry of fashion-faggot-posers musicians by putting out different stuff than any other band. With the release of Faso Latido, the guys from ASL has just made what I thought was going to happen; they just joined the mainstream class of Emo. Not that this record is bad or awful, cause it's not at all. Just that the sound changed so much. Song by song, let's see.
Yeah, it's an overture.
Hmmm. This song's kinda great. It starts great. Unfortunately, the clean parts looks like some lame AlexisOnFire newer stuff .. with a nice melody I'd say. I enjoyed the mood of that song. The more you listen the more you love. 7/10.
Okay. That's the tricky one .. ! I guess this song is the designed one to be the first single of the CD. I hate it, but I'm listening it on & on. This song is addictive. This is bad. Haha. Stand Up ! We're falling back Again ! 8/10 for the addictiveness.
Radio Flyer's Last Journey
Right On. This song is terrible. Probably my favorite. Heavy. Loud. Powerful. PunkRock. This is A Static Lullaby like I enjoy them. Totally crazy. 9.5/10.
Pretty lame. looks like an improved Taking Back Sunday song, with the talent and the prestance. Anyway. A bit too cheesy for me. 6/10.
Half-Man; Half-Shark Equals One Complete Gentlemen
Excellent song. The title is so nice. The clean vocal parts are gorgeous. Not much to say about it. Just great. 7/10.
Slow song. Really slow song. Excellent slow song. Really excellent slow song. 7.5/10
Calmer Than You Are
Not bad. lame at some moments, but overall it's doing it. Calm song. Excellent ending. 7/10
The song that represents the best this album. Calm, cheesy, but intense. Don't really know what to say about it. 7.5/10
God Bless You (God Damnit)
Huh .. sorry .. I was sleeping. 4/10.
Alright Pimp Daddy. This song is the shit. One of my Top 3 for this album. This song hooked me. Totally. Gorgeous. 8/10
Modern Day Fire
Great. Fits in. Makes the job. Once again, it's all about the mood. 6.5/10
The Jesus Haircut
Excellent end to a CD like this one. It kinda retraces all the moods of the CD, putting in an excellent song. Somewhere through the ending it sounds like a song from the latest AFI release, that's actually funny. All along the listening of this CD, you can exactly say what these dudes were listening when they wrote the songs. 7/10.
So, uh. Where's the screamer ? This is what I thought after some listenings. It's just too bad. This guy is the central nerve of this band. What made ...And don't Forget To Breathe a so good record was that the mixing of scream and clean vocal parts was perfect. In this record, screaming is always backwards, hidden somewhere in the closet. Okay, their clean parts are great too, I know, but too much is like not having enough heh. Plus, they replaced their hardcore-ish breakdowns and songs by moods and atmospheres, which is not too much what I love. Honestly, I can compare ASL with AlexisOnFire. Masters at the first release, messing up the second by wanting too much. The best thing would have been to keep up the recipe that made them so special to me.
Overall ? 6.5 or 7/10.
OUT - EXILE IN OBLIVION
Fat Wreck Chords (November 2nd)
Reviewed By : Joel Paquin
Strung Out's Official Website
2. BluePrint of the Fall
4. Her Name In Blood
8. No Voice of Mine
9. Anna Lee
10. Never Speak Again
11. Skeleton Danse
13. Swan Dive
14. The Misanthropic Principle
"You take the way you know, I'll take the road unknown and meet
you there at the end of times" .. Amazing opener. Not as great
as Mission To Mars (Element of Sonic Defiance), but really nice.
Great lyrics, great melody, nice breakdowns. Great, but not
BluePrint of The Fall
"Imagine a Place Where freedom's just a word on the wall
surrounded by the wreckage of towers that could never fall"..
This is one of the most technical songs on this Album. The
guitars are amazing though, from the intro to his crazy ending.
Nice bassline too. Read the lyrics, they're awesome. 9/10
"They Say I won't Survive You" .. Katatonia, from the foreign
word "Katatonic", which means state of schyzophrenia (spelling
right ?probably not). This is one of my favorites. The verses
starts slowly and then .. BANG .. The double bass drum kicks in
and blows you away. "Cross My heart and Hope to Die .. Never
leave this place alive" .. 9/10
Her Name In Blood
"Mother Mary bury me in a place they'll never Find " .. Another
one of my favorites. Hardcore-ish like song, with bak to back
breakdowns and nice guitar riffs. "GIVE IT AWAY GIVE IT AWAY
RIDE THIS BITCH TO HELL". Gorgeous and tight. 9.5/10
Vampires sister it seems. The other slow song of the album.
Better than Vampires for me. "In the darkest places .. love can
grow" .. 7/10
"Burn the Flag of every nation state, flood the palace with the
peoples hate" .. Hell Yeah ! An heavy one. The song with the
most screaming parts, with a son of a bitch guitar solo .. It
sounds like Slayer ! (By the way, Matt Hyde produced this
album). No complex of complacency on that one ! 9/10
Really slow song. The kind of songs that never hooks me. It's
great, but not of my favorites. Listen to it and then judge it !
No Voice Of Mine
Fast, energic, crazy. Previously released on Rock Against Bush
#1, so it's nothing really new. I can't get bored of that one.
Really cool guitar riff from the beginning to the end. 8/10
The worst song of the album. It's SO catchy. "Anna Lee don't you
Cry For Me" .. You see ? Anyway. 5/10
Never Speak Again
Right after the lamest one of the album, you go through the most
experimental one. "To Never have to speak again to never say
your name again" .. The bridge with the bass guitar solo is .. I
don't know .. GORGEOUS ? Yeah. And after a short break .. BAM !
A brick right on your face. Nice outro, with Chris Aiken showing
us his piano skills. 8/10 for me, but 150/10 for the experience.
Nice song. I really love this song, but she's not a "major fact"
on the CD. She's placed between Never Speak Again and Scarlet,
which is nothing to make it starred .. Anyway, listen it, it's
great ! 8/10
Here we go. This is is the story of a HUGE bassline and a guitar
solo that fits in SO perfectly. My favorite song these times,
I'm just hooked on it since I have the CD. 10/10
"The loneliest caged bird sings the saddest song" .. The next
Bro Hymn. A tribute to Jim Cherry, their ex-bass guitar player.
"And if you ask me what went wrong I'd tell you nobody is doing
fine we're all fucked up and doin' time" .. This song makes me
emo !!! No, seriously. This song is the most emotionally charged
on the CD, and it's still PunkRock ! The proof that you can show
your emotions without having thight pants and XXX's. This song
deserves a 9.5/10 !
The Misanthropic Principle
The New MatchBook. They choosed the best song to end the record.
"We All believe we have the right to make believe we know what's
right" .. This is such a nice song. Check out the mini guitar
solo .. "Tell me what is worth dying for ?!" I'll tell you. It's
worth dying for Exile In Oblivion. 9/10.
Overall, the best CD I've ever bought, and the best CD Strung
Out have ever made. Go buy it, and NOW !
Overall : 150/10.
- THE WEAKS END
2. Disguising Mistakes With Goodbyes
3. The Ponytail Parades
6. By All Accounts
7. As Your Voice Fades
9. Under Serious Attack
10. The Secret
First of all, for those
who don't know Emery, there is a biography at
http://www.purevolume.com/Emery/bio. It's a band formed by 6
members: Toby Morrell (Lead Vocal, Guitar), Devin Shelton (Guitar,
vocal), Matt Carter (Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals), Seth Studley
(Drums), Joel Green (Bass), Josh Head (Keyboards).
Ok first of all, this
band is pretty unique in its genre even if we can call it Emo,
indie, emocore or any genre you wanna refer them too. They are
drived by a great lead singer (Toby Morrell) and at some point, we
could say his voice has some similarities with Stephen Christian
from Anberlin. This album is definately one of the greatest I've
ever listened to. All songs are kinda different and you got
smoother songs as well as harder ones. In this album, you got
great atmosphere created by the mix of all instruments (well I'd
say the use of the instruments really makes it a masterpiece they
way everything's used to create the atmosphere). Ok, there aren't
much bands we can compare Emery but we could say it goes a lot
between Mae (Destination: Beautiful) and Silverstein (When Broken
Is Easily Fixed). Some smooth parts in the songs, some harder
dependending on the emotion you can find in them. Personally, my
favorite songs are "The Ponytail Parades", "Walls", "Disguising
Mistakes with Goodbyes", "By All Accounts (Today Was A Disaster)",
"Fractions", "Bloodless", "The Note From Which A Chord Is Built",
"Under Serious Attack", "The Secret", "As Your Voice Fades"....
mmm damn didn't I just name them all... doh! Well they are all
great, you got harder songs like "Walls" and smoother ones like "The
Secret" and all the song's lyrics are really deep lyrically and
contain much emotions.
This is the best CD I've
heard so far that was released in 2004 so you're not very late if
you haven't heard this CD. Oh and also, they are part of Tooth and
Nail Records and did the Tooth and Nail Tour with great bands:
Watashi Wa, Slow Coming Day, Me Without You and Anberlin. They
really deserve to be heard so don't miss out on the chance of
listening to them and get their CD, they absolutely rock.
A big 9/10.
Artist: Appleseed Cast
Album: Two Conversations
Label: Tiger Style
Released Date: July 22nd 2003
1. Hello Dearest Love
2. Hanging Marionette
3. Ice Heavy Branches
4. Losing Touching Searching
5. Fight Song
8. Innocent Vigilant Ordinary
9. How Life Can Turn
10. Dream for Us
A little bit about them: The Appleseed Cast are formed by: Chris
Crisci (vocals), Aaron Pillar (guitar), Louie Ruiz (drums) and
Jason Wickersheim (bass, saxophone, piano). They have 5 full
lenght albums since around 1995.
Ok Indie fans here we go. "Two Conversations" is the title of
Appleseed Cast's last work. It's fantastic how much they can
bring us so great albums each time. Some people thought
Appleseed Cast were going to make something really out of the
track after having success with Low Level Owl 1 and 2 but it's
absolutely not the way things became. This album as well as all
Appleseed Cast are brilliant as much musically as lyrically.
It's absolutely useless to say more about them, you gotta check
them out and figure everything out by yourself to notice they
rock. If you like The Gloria Record, Death Cab For Cutie,
American Football, Mineral, as well as previous Appleseed Cast
albums, you can't be wrong by buying this cd right away.
This album really deserves more than 10/10 but I'll give it a
- The Artist in the Ambulance] by Gabi
1. Cold cash
2. Under a killing moon
3. All that's left
5. Stare at the sun
6. Paper Tigers
7. Hoods on peregrine
8. The melting point
9. Blood clots and
10. The artist in the
11. The abolition of
12. Don't tell and we
Island records has
release the thrid thrice album. This unquire band with it's punk
metal signature sound got started in 1998 and has been working
hard ever since. Teppei Teranishi' guitar
lead is awesome in the cd. Which adds
to the magic of the drummer's, Riley Breckenridge, handiwork.
Dustin Kensrue has this soaring voice which really adds to the
lyrics. Not to
mention the amazing job at bass, Eddie Breckenridge, has done.
This cd is filled with amazing lyrics like "The Artist in the
Ambulance", the cd's title track. The lyrics were inspired by Al
Burian's book Bure Collecter.
That is not the only great song from
this album . "Paper Tigers" has the greatest guitar
lead and for the most heavist song they have done
on this album, it has the coolest vocals.
To get to know more about this cd, pick it up!