Thursday, January 31, 2013

V/A - Challenge: No Submission/Mercenary God/No Suicide LP

Here's a really cool 3-way split from Italy circa 1981, on Bootleg Records. I originally tracked this down for the NO SUBMISSION tracks after I found out they were pre- WAX HEROES, who released one of my favorite post punk/new wave EPs of all time! Luckily the rest of the material on here turned out to be stellar as well!

NO SUICIDE kicks this thing off with three offerings of infectious cold/minimal wave punk kinda stuff with female vocals in Italian. They don't seem to have any other releases as far as I can tell. MERCENARY GOD does 4 songs of 77 style KBD punk with distorted and jangly guitars, and snarling vocals in English. There's a 2004 reissue of a whole LP's worth of stuff called Burning Generation. NO SUBMISSION is the highlight on here for me, with their catchy upbeat punk and some post-punk moments. You may recognize their third track from the Killed By Death #201 D'Italia comp - it's got the same swaggering "d-beat" that the BUZZCOCKS did before DISCHARGE, hehe! All four of their tracks on here are just awesome and way ahead of their time. The vocalist/bassist has an especially unique singing style, just as is the case in his other incredible, and much darker band, WAX HEROES. Enjoy this rare Italian punk treat!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


My seemingly never-ending thirst for awesome foreign punk has compelled me to make a lot of blind purchases in my record collecting life. If I'm digging at a record store and come across a reasonably priced foreign punk band that I don't know, more often than not I'll just buy it. 75 percent of the time I end up with something horrible, but in this case, I scored a classic! It makes the trial-and-error-style record buying worth the hassle. I bought this LP because the cover art rules and it looked like it might be Eastern-Euro punk, and hallelujah it was indeed! Fucking remarkable, in fact!

DAVOVA PSYCHOZA formed in Bratislava in 1987 and are still active to this day, and this is their debut LP from 1991. I played a show in a very small and pretty town in Czech Republic a couple of years ago called Ústí nad Labem (seriously, look at it), and met a nice local couple there, and we began talking about punk bands. I told them the only Czech band I knew about was DAVOVA PSYCHOZA, and their expressions lit up and they cheered (and corrected me that they are technically Slovakian) that I knew this band - and that's how I found out that they were important!

You may have noticed that one particular trend in my taste in music is the melodic/aggressive combo. I like hooks, melodies, crafty songwriting, and high-energy in my punk, and this LP is oozing with all of those qualities. It's all about the up front sung/yelled vocals and guitar leads on here, it's fucking brilliant. If you're like me you will become obsessed with this record and start singing along with some of these undeniably catchy choruses in Slovakian, with no grasp of the language whatsoever (or making up your own English phrases that sound the same). The only other recording I have by this band is their split 7" with ZEMEZLUC from 2001, but I know there's more awesome D.PSYCHOZA shit out there, so please hook me up! And seriously, download this because it's probably better than whatever you're listening to right now.

Monday, January 28, 2013

GRAZHDANSKAYA OBORONA - Хорошо !! cassette

Here's another fine selection of GRAZHDANSKAYA OBORONA's distinguished brand of melancholic Russian punk. This album was recorded in 1987 but has a much more hi-fi recording quality than the Necrophilia tape that I posted previously, but it still has great material and is a great listen. I translated the song-titles into English, as I try to always do for stuff written in languages using different characters. Enjoy the tunes and the naughty pictures on the insert. 

Гражданская Оборона ‎– Хорошо !!

Saturday, January 26, 2013


Sometimes being a MRR demo reviewer really pays off, and this cassette is one of those instances...

RATAS RABIOSAS  is from the burgeoning Peruvian punk scene and features folks from D.H.K. This tape reminds me more of the old Mexican hardcore bands like SEDICION and MASSACRE 68 with it's blown out production, simple riffs, tupa-tupa drum beat, and burly vocals in Spanish. For those who like it rowdy and raw, proceed straight to the link...

Oh, and you can still order this fine cassette from the following distros in the U$A: Rust and Machine, Velted Regnub, and Soap and Spikes.

Friday, January 25, 2013


My gorgeous partner organized a surprise party for my birthday last night and we were out late drinking and playing shuffleboard (it's actually fun, not as lame as it sounds). As a result I've got a pounding headache and  I'm playing hooky for half of the day. I was not gonna bother with this blog today, but why not just throw something up really quick right? That's usually not my style - I like writing a bit about the music/band that I'm posting, but I really have no info about this 7", so I don't have to say much! 

All I can tell you about this is I ordered it from a distro several years ago because it said it was from Norway, and it turned out to be pretty cool. There's dual male/female singing, punk, hardcore, and some experimenting with other styles too. "Kjønnsyksommer" is a really diverse and catchy tune that sounds like a mix between 00's Kick n Punch stuff and...I dunno...JOYCE MCKINNEY EXPERIENCE? Like if GORILLA ANGREB was angrier and weirder? Yeah, so don't overlook this one just cuz I don't know anything about it - it exhibits a lot of originality!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

JUGGLING JUGULARS - ...For Humanity (Early 90's) LP

Today is a very special day for me, so I decided to share a very special record to me - the debut LP from long-running and inspiring Finnish political punk band JUGGLING JUGULARS!! This record has been in consistent rotation for me for nearly my entire adult life, and I'd have to declare it a 'desert island' record. After a few decent EPs under their belt at the time, I feel that they really made their mark with this LP. Upbeat, energetic, melodic, catchy, charming punk with a dash of hardcore. It's the perfect length and it has everything necessary to make a perfect punk record: great fast songs, catchy mid tempo songs, catchy melodic guitar leads, great slightly off-key singing in English with a Finnish accent, and a chorus that goes "United we stand/Divided we fall!" x 4. 

JUGGLING JUGULARS released so many more excellent records from 1990 til now, but this one always makes its way back onto my turntable, headphones, car stereo, etc. Nearly every mix tape I've ever made for anyone has included a song from this LP, and though I probably picked songs like "Disturbance," "My Lonely Day," and "Selling Privacy" the most, I'd have to say that I've picked almost every song at least once. I still feel touched by certain lighter moments, and get goosebumps on some of the more raging parts. Did I mention that the bass player Jantsa (RIP) played in the phenomenal late 80's hardcore band TREBLINKA? Talk about a criminally underrated band! Oh, and if you've heard their most recent stuff then yes, they have had a rad female vocalist in the mix for the past 13 years. Put this LP on a tape with UPRIGHT CITIZENS, POST REGIMENT, and HDQ and you've got the perfect Euro melodic-hc matchup. 

Ok I'll quit blabbing about this masterpiece now and enjoy my birthday. If anyone wants to give me presents, I need the JUG JUGULARS "Positively Fed Up" and "New Toys" albums that I believe were only released on CD in the mid 90s - I've never even heard them! Fuck! 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

DURNOYE VLIYANIE - Nepodvizhnost Cassette

дурное влияние
I can't find much about this band on the internet written in English, which is unfortunate because this post punk/cold wave band from St. Petersburg, Russia, is really interesting, and this tape is a great listen! I got a big box of mostly eastern Euro/USSR/Balkan tapes a while back, and this was one of the shining stars of the bunch. Well, not 'shining' in a 'bright' sense - this is rather dark and desolate sounding, actually. I hear an equal amount of SISTERS OF MERCY and JOY DIVISION, while holding a tone of sheer misery throughout. DURNOYE VLIYANIE apparently existed from 1987 to 1991, but reformed a couple years ago. 

Дурное Влияние ‎– Неподвижность

This recording was done in a Leningrad suburb in 1989, but this tape didn't see the light of day until 2003, and I get the feeling it's very rare. The first track is a bit more upbeat than the others, but as the following tunes slow down a bit, they certainly don't diminish in quality. Some of the guitar riffs are really innovative, and the vocals have the monotone goth quality, but not in a boring or completely contrived way, and sometimes unleash with some ear-splitting howls to keep things interesting. Perfect for those depressing rainy days...

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

INSTIGATORS ‎– The Blood Is On Your Hands EP

My pal over at TERMINAL ESCAPE made the comment in his INSTIGATORS post the other day that their "first EP and full length are mandatory listening." I agreed so much that it inspired me to rip "The Blood Is On Your Hands" onto the laptop so I could play it on my ipod while I'm at work (where I make very naughty things), and of course, so I could share it with all of you.

I've spent much of my music-nerding life on the old UK anarcho stuff, and I must declare this as some of the best material of that era. INSTIGATORS have the same aim and intention in melody and ideology as many of their contemporaries like SUBHUMANS, ZOUNDS, ICONS OF FILTH etc., but combine melody, driving rhythms, and sharp vocals that really stand out - sung up front in a high register with lots of conviction. The riffs and overall production are darker on this EP than their subsequent brilliant "Nobody Listens Anymore" LP. If you dig the early 80's UK anarcho stuff, this is a must. Released by Bluurg Records in 1984.

Monday, January 21, 2013

GULAG - Είσοδος Κινδύνου 0° C

Here's the debut record of Thessaloniki's GULAG. This 12"shows the band young and unrefined, before they became a little more upbeat and aggressive. However, the great melodies and eloquence are already there, and it's certainly right in line with other classic Greek punk stuff such as GENIA TOU XAOUS and EX-HUMANS - melodic, thoughtful, and unique, including some post-punk elements, while tense and spacious in sound. This record was actually my introduction to the band. I was on tour and a friend pulled this cheaply out of the bins at Amoeba in San Francisco - I don't even know if he knew the band, but it was a neat find, and a couple hot Texas summers later he sold it to me for taco money! Accompanying the record is a nice foldout poster and an extra English insert with translated lyrics and explanations of the photos used in the layout!

Two of these tracks were re-recorded for the previously posted "Big Talk" EP. The other four are exclusive to this release. I love the cover art on this 12"....hope you enjoy the sounds!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

NOVI CVETYA - 83 98 Cassette

I'm a complete sucker for rare Eastern European punk.Today's completely deranged post may be a test of patience for most of you - i.e. a must for 'exotic punk' fans, and a maybe for everyone else. If you dig the GRAZHDANSKAYA OBORONA post I did a couple weeks ago then you should definitely download this, because it has a similar style in vocals and melody. The cassette is obviously a 327th generation copy of a copy of a copy, and suffers in quality, but hey what the fuck do you expect from some obscure artifact from the tape trading circles in Bulgaria in the 80's-90's? So if you can't hang with it, just skip to tracks 16-20 when the recording is much fuller and you can hear the drums and stuff - it evolves into super catchy punk with some hints of UK 80's anarcho sound, and an added female vocalist for an extra dynamic.  

There's absolutely no info in this tape or in my "Discography of Eastern European Punk Music 1977-1999" book by Luk Haas, (oh, you don't have one of those?? --->, but I do have a NOVI CVETYA reissue 7" that has a short history of the band:

"The band was made of a bunch of kids, that heard some punk stuff on the Yugoslavian radio and decided to become 'punks'...back in 1979. They made their own instruments, recorded demos in their summer kitchen, using simple reel to reel recorder.
With the 'perestroika' they became more famous, did their first official gigs and even got an alarm clock as a prize! It was 1987...
The early 90s brought more fans, more concerts and then one day it all faded away, as after all they had to take care of their families, to work know...
In 2004 'Radiation 1978-1995' was released, a sort of collection of tracks that never made it on vinyl or cd, until then. In February 2007 they released the new album 'Zemen Rai' (The Earthly Paradise) also including some of their old tracks."

Saturday, January 19, 2013

STENGTE DØRER - Sangen Om Vår Vidunderlige Verden LP

For my pal Rémi in France, here's the killer first LP by Norwegian powerhouse STENGTE DØRER. Anyone who has known me for long enough knows of my intense enthusiasm for old Norwegian hardcore, so it should come as no surprise that these guys are one of my favorites. Featuring one of the greatest hardcore/punk guitarists in the world (also from SO MUCH HATE, BANNLYST, PSYKISK TERROR, CAPTAIN NOT RESPONSIBLE..), STENGTE DØRER retained many similar qualities to other Norwegian bands from the 80's, but with a little more rock (they cover THE SWEET) evolved into their sound. Their split with PROCES from '85 is way more punk sounding in the writing and production, but by no means did that element escape the band on here. More rock riffs and influences creep in in their next two subsequent LP's, but the foundation of STENGTE DØRER always remained political hardcore punk. 

Characterized by melodic guitar riffs, solid beats, creative arrangements, and throaty vocals, STENGTE DØRER were one of the more unique sounding bands from the region - even considering the already unique sound coming out of Norway in the 80's. I've always felt like this band was under-appreciated, at least these days. But I get the feeling that at the time they were all the rage in Europe. And as is the case with all of their releases, their artwork is really awesome! Mandatory Euro-hardcore!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

STIGMATHE - Suoni Puri Dalla Libertà EP

I don't know exactly why, but I often prefer music by the bands that are less favored than their contemporaries. So considering the spectrum of classic Italian hardcore, I jam STIGMATHE probably twice as often as a WRETCHED or NEGAZIONE record - or an old Yugoslavian hardcore band over ANTI-CIMEX - or THE FARTZ over anything by BLACK FLAG. I haven't quite figured out why my tastes have formed this way, but I'll get back to y'all on that...

STIGMATHE stands out for cranking some of the most unique and interesting hardcore to ever come out of Italy. Their steady, driving rhythm section is punctuated by great vibrant guitar riffs, and even greater vocals - it's not as unhinged as much of the other great Italian stuff, but still retains so much power. Side A of this EP contains two catchy hardcore songs at a galloping pace with full drums and bass, thin but tuneful guitars (cool leads!), and raspy vocals with a demanding presence. On side B, "Italia Brucia" defies any comparison to anything I can thin of. It's probably one of the catchiest punk songs in existence - it has this sort of traditional salsa beat/melody thing with catchy sung vocals, but still within the realm of hardcore punk. I really don't know how else to describe feel of it - but I can see it being quite a good time played to a squat full of Italian punx! 

STIGMATHE was apparently only active from 1983-1986, giving us this EP, the even better "Lo Sguardo Dei Morti," a couple tracks on the killer "Raptus Negazione & Superamento" compilation LP, and a super rare live tape. The guitarist went on to form a cool goth band called THELEMA, who apparently existed through the last decade. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I pulled this EP out of the dollar bin at 1234 Go! Records store in Oakland a couple months ago. As far as many important things in my life are concerned, my memory is often unreliable, but as for information about punk records/bands? There seems to be a special compartment in my brain that is designated specifically for retaining this type of punk information, and when I saw FARCICAL's name on this 7", that part of my brain revealed to me that I knew there was some relation to the kings of eclectic Swedish hardcore, G-ANX. That's worth a dollar for further investigation to me...

So I got it back to my loving partner's house, threw it on the turntable, and if you've listened to G-ANX as many times as I have, it's pretty evident that FARCICAL shares a drummer and bass player with them - quite possibly the guitar player too. They dish out 2 unconventional tracks of bleak hardcore with weird parts, much on the vein of G-ANX, but in my opinion, not quite as convincing as G-ANX did. But okay, cool. Flip it over...I hadn't even considered the band on the other side. I may not have even realized it was a split when I bought it. Guess what happened? Sweden's FATAL FEMALES came through as the score of the find! The first track, "Life," creeps in with a rather generic and slow bass line, but wait like 15 seconds and the guitar darkens it up a little, and then after everything kicks in it's a full on noisy + melodic + dark + tupa-tupa beat with awesome controlled female vocal attack! If you are familiar with TOZIBABE, they are a great reference point. Then the next two tracks are driving mid tempo tracks much more akin to 80's UK anarcho like LOST CHERREES or DIRT, with a laid back but great and catchy vocal delivery that for some reason reminds me of NOG WATT. See, with all these awesome and unique band names in ALL CAPS screaming out on the page, I've certainly lured more of you to read about this and hopefully download it, cuz this band was AWESOME! Well, I could see many people finding it boring, but it's the sort of sound I tend to get really excited about, and I'd like more info on FATAL FEMALES if anyone has it?? A long lost demo or something maybe? Oh, and those comparisons I made - I do truthfully stand by them. 


Sunday, January 13, 2013



From BSN.....and on to BSA! Nothing obscure here, but no less effective in the blistering Latino hardcore department. BASTARD SONS OF APOCALYPSE formed in south Texas (Rio Grande Valley) in the early 00's and I started seeing them appearing on bills in Austin, where I lived, in maybe 2003 or'04? Can't remember for sure, but after a promising demo, they released this monster debut D-Beat platter on the now well known 540 Records. I became quite close to these guys - I toured with them twice, once to the east coast and once through Mexico, and later played in a few bands with the singer, Eddie, who now plays in CRIATURAS and runs a cool label/distro called Todo Destruido. BSA's drummer, Omar, now plays in PORKERIA and does a label called Adelante, for whom I can't find a link. Not sure what the other folks are up to these days, but I've probably seen this band more times than I've seen any other band, and I have many fond and chaotic memories of them! 

BSA also released another EP on Distort Reality, a great split with Chi-town hardcore punk stalwarts SIN ORDEN on my buddy Manolo's Desobediencia Records, and their massive "Strangled By the System" LP - co-released by Todo Destruido and Adelante

I should also mention that this EP and the self titled one were recorded by my dear friend Stan Wright, whose recording operations are much more stable these days at his studio in Portland, Buzz or Howl. I still haven't made it up there to visit and see the new setup, but any punk bands located on the west coast, or bands planning to come the west coast that want to record, Stan's your man! 


Saturday, January 12, 2013

BASTARDOS SIN NOMBRE - Brigada Subterranea EP

Inspired by a comment made by NO BEAST SO FIERCE, I pulled out this Colombian hardcore gem today. The late 80's - early 90's were a disastrous time for the people of Medellin. It was one of the most dangerous cities in the world due to the nearly unavoidable narco-terrorism. Many people were pressured into joining corrupt government armies as their only option, but many punks chose the music instead of the gangs and violence. Forming bands, pogoing at shows, and becoming immersed in the underground punk culture was an alternative (though still dangerous!) for the youth to resist the prominent narco-terrorism. 

BASTARDOS SIN NOMBRE released two EP's in '91 and '92 (this), and appeared on 2 compilations: the Estamos en la Sima cassette and the scathing La Ciudad Podrida LP. This great EP presents BSN as a tight, desperate, aggressive hardcore band with a full sound. I couldn't resist including the awesome artwork/lyric layout on the inner of the foldout sleeve!

I translated the lyrics to "La Ciudad Morgue" to English:

Who is killing our people
What is the reason for so much death
that has lost respect for life
when will this uncivil war 
City death
City death
All trapped within this concrete jungle
Panic and discontent is the only certainty
City death
City death

Friday, January 11, 2013

OSCURO LUGAR - Alguien Muere EP

Still feeling gloomy and doomy here - maybe it's the cold weather, among other I'm darkening things up a bit with a 7" from OSCURO LUGAR, from Colombia. Released by the wonderful Darbouka Records, this is quite a departure from anything I've heard out of Medellin. "Alguien Muere" is a relatively lo-fi track driven by a steady light drum machine, clean flanged guitar draped over the background, a harsher distorted one jabbing toward the front, and classic reverbed gothy vocals not unlike Ian Curtis or Peter Murphy, but in Español. "Paso Doble" is a creepy instrumental with a marching snare beat, a punchy synth, and textured guitar lines. "Los Males Revelan" kicks it up to hi-fi range with the drum machine, and is more synth/vocal driven. I can't find any info on this band - I don't even have a clue when this was recorded. It sounds like it could be old, but judging by the releasing patterns of the label, it's probably not. If early CURE and SISTERS OF MERCY get you moving, download this for sure. 

Thursday, January 10, 2013


To follow up with the GULAG post, I'm doing a related post tonight to draw attention to the 20+ years active Villa Amalias squat in Athens, Greece, that was evicted and taken over by the police a couple weeks ago. A couple close Greek friends of mine have been keeping me posted on the happenings, and I just read today that more squats in Athens are now becoming targets of arrest and police occupation. Please take a few minutes to read and find out what's going on here --You can follow updates on the situation (in Greek, but Google lets me translate it) ON THE VILLA AMALIAS BLOG. For a good history and recount of what first happened in English, check this outFor more info on the situation and to sign a petition to show solidarity with the squat GO HERE. 

GULAG - Big Talk EP

Today I'm posting a 7" by my favorite Greek punk band! GULAG, or Γκούλαγκ, is from Thessaloniki and played a unique style of melodic punk. This is their second release from 1989 on the Hamburg/New York label Wreck-Age, and it's a great introduction to the band if you've never heard them. This recording features two songs that were on their first 12" from 1987 (which I almost posted today but I'm having problems with my camera, and my scanner is only big enough for 7"s and tapes), two from their first LP from 1990, and one track exclusive to this 7". This one defines my taste almost to a 'T' and comes with my highest recommendation. I'm feeling kinda gloomy and glum tonight as I write this, so I'm just gonna keep it short and soak in these dark, moody, angst-ridden Greek tunes and let the music speak for itself...and eat crackers and cheese...Seriously though, don't skip over this one, and there will be more rare Greek stuff to come in the future!  

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Today I present you with a pretty scarce but excellent 80's hardcore/punk compilation that I finally got to cross off of my want list last month, thanks to a friend who had an extra copy. Double A Records outta Germany did this one in 1986, and it features mostly European bands and a couple from North America. A few classic no-brainers, and a few more obscure names make this LP a fun listen, and essential for 80's euro-hc fanatics (like myself). 

Here's the run down:
2 tracks by PSYKISK TERROR from Norway, who only seem to have ever released stuff on comps. These are the best that I've heard from them - POISON IDEA mixed with classic Norwegian hardcore, considering that they had the incredible guitarist Børre Løvik (rip) of BANNLYST, SO MUCH HATE, and STENGTE DORER // California's DETONATORS offer up a couple great hardcore tracks with such great, wet sounding distorted guitars // MOSKWA with two rippers of their excellent, thrashy Polish hardcore // INSTIGATORS with their signature anarcho-meets-aggressive melodic punk from England (I always disliked their second singer though) // One ANGOR WAT track, Norway's very own unique and tense anarcho punk band // Vancouver's BLUE MARBELLAS do one raw and lazy punk tune with a catchy chorus // ZSD from W. Germany doing one tolerable reggae track and one much better rockin' punk jam - BILLY & THE WILLIES also from Germany, do a strange creepy hc song // then more German punk by SONS OF SADISM, more in the classic Deutschpunk traditon // A crossover thrash offering by masters of the style, CONCRETE SOX, from Nottingham // An energetic USHC flavored track by Germany's SKEEZICKS // And then there's a track credited to "EXXX" that I can only conclude is EA80 by their instantly recognizable sound. Beats me why they remained elusive on here. My copy doesn't have an insert, maybe the answer is in there?

Fyi - the last track, "Hvit Natt" by PSYKISK TERROR, slows down toward the end on the actual record, not sure why - AND this song is played by BANNLYST on their awesome live LP released by my pal Flo from Norwegian Leather.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013


I originally planned to do a "show report" today with photos and reviews of the excellent show at The Swamp in Oakland on Saturday: SAD BOYS (Ny), DRAPETOMANIA (La), SADICOS (La), DESMADRE EN KRISIS (San Jose), DESTRUYE Y HUYE (La), & MIDNITE BRAIN (Bay Area). Whew! But once I pulled out my camera and it wouldn't power on, I realized that the damn battery was dead! So I said fuck it and decided to just enjoy myself. I will say that despite the usual careless disregard of respect/safety in and around the "pit," and idiotic intentional destruction of sections of the ceiling, it was an incredible show! 

The next best thing I can do (or maybe even the better thing in the first place) is post this essential DRAPETOMANIA EP, which was co-released by the band and my old pals at Todo Destruido earlier  this year. The three total bombers and one mid-tempo stomper easily put this thing in my top ten for the year (which will be posted here eventually). DRAPETOMANIA features a core of members of the active and inspiring Silenzio Statico camp from Los Angeles. In case you don't already know, Silenzio Statico has been releasing tapes, booking shows, screen printing, setting up events, and cranking out raging and authentic punk music for several years now, all in the radical DIY spirit. I've often spilled praise in the pages of MRR about how inspiring and awesome these folks are, and the high quality/honesty/passion that their endeavors exhibit. So here I am, once again, shamelessly endorsing these ponx - go check their site for info on events and ordering stuff, and support them and check out their bands when they come to your town (they're working their way up the West Coast right now with SAD BOYS!!!)

Oh and in case you don't know what Drapetomania means (I didn't), here's an explanation from Wikipedia:
"Drapetomania was a supposed mental illness described by American physician Samuel A. Cartwright in 1851 that caused black slaves to flee captivity."