by Al Slavicsky
Sponsored In Part By
American Machine Records, Inc.
As powerful as Pantera, as strong as Crowbar, and as violent as
East Coast hardcore, Scapegoat delivers a good release reflecting
the hardship of the world today. By using many different studio
techniques, the band creates a style all their own; for example,
using a tape rewinding at the beginning of the CD and using
cartoon effects on "Not My Fault." Also includes an impressive
instrumental called "Overlook." Scapegoat is not a scapegoat of
today's bland music.
Scared of Chaka-SCARED OF CHAKA
Back to the basic punk music in the vein of the Dickies,
Screeching Weasels, or the Queers, Scared of Chaka creates one of
the best sounding punk releases since Green Day's KERPLUNK
release. Great production, understandable vocals, and a great mix
where we can hear the drums, guitars, and bass, not overpowering
the vocals. This is one band to watch out for.
Raliegh Theodore Sakers-UNCUT tape
Insane spoken word from a demented subgenius of today's
counterpunk culture. Raliegh takes a turn into dementia and deals
with topics such as history, sex, religion, work ethics, love,
and much more. For almost 45 minutes, this lunatic from the
insane asylum babbles and babbles about what he thinks is the
truth. Controversial sometimes; intelligent at others; Timothy
Leary-like in nature at others; screwed up most of the time.
Junior Kimbrough-MOST THINGS HAVEN'T WORKED OUT
Fat Possum/Capricorn Records
Pass me a plate of grits and hog jaws plus a bottle of grandpa's
old fashioned moonshine, for this release brings you down home to
a Southern juke joint. Junior Kimbrough gets down and delivers
some barn burning riffs that burn down the house with rapid fire
speed. Delta style blues with a dose of Texarkana blues blaze on
eight contemporary blues gems such as "Burn in Hell," "Everywhere
I Go," and "Leave Her Alone." Instant classic.
Trouble Funk-EARLY SINGLES
Infinite Zero/American Recordings
With the recent blending of classic go-go music beats and hip-hop
(especially DJ Kool), this release by Trouble Funk is a good
starting place to hear the evolution of go-go music. Containing
strong P-funk vibes transposed with early hip-hop beats such as
Soul Sonic Force's "Planet Rock" reworked into "Trouble Funk
Express." Also, one can hear material which has been sampled by
other rappers, including the intro to "So Early in the Morning."
Most of the material is from the mid-1980s, and it is still a
mystery why go-go never achieved the respect that it truly
Supersuckers-MUST'VE BEEN HIGH
Sub Pop Records
One might think that the Supersuckers are a punk, hardcore, or
grunge band since they are on Seattle's Sub Pop label, but don't
let labels fool you because the Supersuckers do some of the best
old time COUNTRY heard in years in the vein of The Highwaymen,
the Carter Family, and Neil Young and Crazy Horse. MUST'VE BEEN
HIGH shines with its country roots. Highlights include the title
song with vocals phoned in from THE HONEYSUCKLE ROSE II by Willie
Nelson and "Non-Addictive Marijuana" for its strong political
Ty Reed Sammons-KEEP AN EYE OUT
Looking Back Records
Impressive contemporary guitar blues done with a passion for the
music and not for commercial gains. Ty Reed Sammons demonstrates
that he can play the guitar with the best bluesmen in the world
while delivering white lightning chords and riffs burning up
desires which mold the listener into a mental crossroads of
sounds. Excellent guitar work in the vein of John Lee Hooker and
ZZ Top. Favorite cuts include "Molassses," with its basic, raw
sound and "Angel," with its emotional blinds.
Miss Red Flowers-MISS RED FLOWERS
Consisting of the brilliant lyricist, songwriter, and guitarist
Amy Kent and Jesse Spero as background vocalist and drummer, Miss
Red Flowers captures some of the most reality-based music since
Nirvana's BLEACH LP. Kent's vocals capture a multi-dimensional,
worldly texture which enchants her lyrics via her airy falsetto
voice. Soothing, relaxing yet violable while remaining pure from
the opening notes of "Dear James" to the closing track, "Rama."
More over Spinanes, for Miss Red Flowers is ready to take your
From the early dabys of the black metal scene comes this dark
compact disc from the band Ophthalamia. Containing many rare
rehearsal and demo recordings, the average black metal fan can
search the sorrow and see how the movement transformed and grew.
>From the raw first recordings of the band -- "A Lonely
Ceremony/The Eternal Walk" from 1990 -- to "Deathcrush," "Shore
of Koa-Ta-Nu/The Eternal Walk Part II," and "Sacrifice" from a
1994 rehearsal session, this 10 track compilation shows the
progress of both the black metal movement and Ophthalamia.
E. Carnage + Acousticoitus-DEMO #1
Sounds like some drunk in a college dorm room talking about how
stupid Bush sounds, and they even try to sing some of the songs
made famous (or infamous) by Gavin and the boys. Then they go
into a parody of a Nirvana tune. E. Carnage + Acousticoitus sound
sicker and stupider than anything ever recorded by the human
race, and is totally lo-fi experimental neo-noise, and is not
recommended for lovers of beautiful music. A cult favorite.
Ronnie Earl & the Broadcasters-THE COLOUR OF LOVE
Guitarist Ronnie Earl's Verve Records debut is destined to make
waves through the music world, for he is able to combine a
diverse blend of music to create something fresh. Jazz, blues,
and Southern rock flows into a multi-layer cesspool to meet head-
on a supersonic groove. Grooving similar to the Grateful Dead's
improvisation jams or the Allman Brothers' lengthy solos, Ronnie
Earl enlights passion not heard in a long time. Standout tune on
the release is "Everyday Kinda Man" with Gregg Allman on vocals.
Intensity times 1000.
Molding the outer limits of alternative music, Pusherman slowly
transforms simple chord progressions and creates long epic-like
songs which, at least, last roughly five minutes, if not longer.
Reminds one of '70s progressive rock, only twisted with a
Nirvana/Pearl Jam/Oasis sound. The standout track is the musical
masterpiece "Floored," whose melodies hook with noisy vibrations
to flow into a solid groove structure. Powerful.
Earth tone music in the vein of Phish, Grateful Dead, and Rusted
Root, the Boneheads mix elements of folk, country, blues, and
roots rock to create a passionate mix of groove-influenced
progressive folk. Very relaxing yet very danceable beats.
Transcending many genres, the bands focuses on what sounds like
Americana folklores and tales in songs such as "Siesta Time,"
"Railroad Bill," and more. Feeling alive music of the 1990s.
Spencer Bohren-DIRT ROADS
Authentic traditional acoustic folk-country blues delivered by
bluesman Spencer Bohren. This is a recording of a man and his
mission to presrve the blues inspired by Charley Patton and
Leadbelly, only to bring it back alive in the '90s. Spencer
polishes his blend of originals, such as the haunting "Eloise"
and "Travelin'," and classics, including "The Water is Wide" and
"Wade In the Water," to provide us with a grade A release.
Hyperactive, hallucinogenic, trancendentalic music which
subconsciously enpowers the listener into a never-neverland world
where your pleasant dreams transform into hellish nightmares.
Tool hydroplanes into uncharted territory while artistically
remaining similar to their previous releases, UNDERTOW and
OPIATE. Musically, Tool takes psychological, mind-altering
lyrics, overlays them with extreme, agressive, distorted vocals,
drowning phase-shifting guitars, deep, intense, powerful bass
riffs, and high-impact drumming to create extreme music. A
U. Utah Phillips & Mark Ross-LOAFER'S GLORY
Red House Records
Hobo and storyteller U. Utah Phillips brings pleasant lost hobo
folklore to the world with help from Mark Ross. This is an
excellent example of what is becoming a lost art form and is
interesting as a piece of history and as a way which one can
relax and enjoy great music. If you like old fashioned protest
music with a lot of political and social commentary, then this is
for you. Americana music, hobo music, folk music, etc. --
whatever you want to call it -- it is great music.
Black Fork-ROCK FOR LOOT
Punk has come a long way since the mid-1970s, and Black Fork
continues the tradition by doing an album of high energy punk
with piss off lyrics plus a new twist via use of radical audio
samples fro the tele. Most of the tunes are short, fast punk
anthems which make you wanna pogo, especially "Total Eclipse of
the Brain" and "Mosquito." But what is the kicker is the unlisted
bonus track of audio samples, which are hilarious and weird at
the same time. Righteous, dudes.
The Toasters-HARD BAND FOR DEAD
Moon Ska Records
Ska continues to make an impact both domestically and imported.
The Toasters continue to preserve the fine tradition of ska music
which goes back to the mid-'60s. Some of the best recorded third
wave ska shines through on their tribute to Chuck Berry simply
called "Chuck Berry" and their remake of the Johnny Rivers
classic "Secret Agent Man." File with The Specials, The Beat,
Madness, and The Spectors, and you should get the drift. Ska
lives again with The Toasters.
Back again from the past, W.A.S.P., metal's bad boys of shock
rock, are smearing filth all over the place. If one thinks that
Blackie Lawless and the boys are toning it down in their mid-age
crisis... forget it, for such songs as "Fetus," "My Tortured
Eyes," "The Horror," and controversial title tune "K.F.D." carry
a power packed punch. This band shows no end in sight. Marilyn
Manson may be the new shock rock fad, but Blackie Lawless and
W.A.S.P. are the grandfathers of shock, and this release proves
Size 14-SIZE 14
Volcano Entertainment, L.L.C.
What's the formula of poppy alternative punk and catchy, witty
lyrics? Give up? It's Size 14. One their self-titled debut
release, the band does such catchy numbers as "Claire Danes
Poster," where they idolize the teenage actress as if she were a
god, "People Get Really Drunk in Las Vegas," which is self-
explanatory, "I Touched Her Ass," which demonstrates how the guys
try to cop a fell, and "Jimmy Whalen," which sounds like some
kind of stalker of the band on an answering machine. Size 14 --
the real Beavis and Buttheads of rock 'n roll, and they're gonna
kick your ass.
The Interpreters-IN REMEMBRANCE OF THAT FINE EVENING
Volcano Entertainment, L.L.C.
When this release first hit my compact disc player, my walls
began shaking due to the excitement which this release gave. Four
party rocking tunes of high-energy rock with a smidge of
alternative thrown in for good measure. Contains four tracks
which the band recorded with various producers/musicians in Shel
Tamy (who produced The Who and The Kinks) on "I Remember" and
"Dogskin Report," Eric Eriandson (of Hole) on "The Truth About
Secrets," and soul producer Ron A. Shaffer on "She Doesn't." If
you would like to hear "Dogskin Report," check out their website
www.theinterpreters.com, for the whole tune is available there.
Kami Lyle-BLUE CINDERELLA
Hard to define the unique style of Kami Lyle's work. It is a
cross between pop, country style folk, and bluesy jazz. Reminds
one of what Sting, Sarah McLachlan, Lyle Lovett, and Willie
Nelson have done in the past. Her vocal characteristics are
sharp, mellow, and relaxing while using her main instruments of
piano and trumpets. Out of the 11 tunes, the songs "Boys,"
"Worried One," and "Midnight Club" majorly set the mood of the
release, which is pleasantly relaxing.
Last Chance Jug Band-SHAKE YOU THING!
Inside Memphis/Inside Sounds
Bluesy old fashioned jug music which makes you want to groove and
have a few brewskis. The Last Chance Jug Band uses diverse
instruments as one-string bass, washboards, kazoos, pianos,
harmonicas, drums, guitars, percussion, and most of all, the
omnipresent jug. Don't think that you are going to hear the kind
of music you might hear on HEE HAW, for these guys have the blues
in their heart, especially on "Let Me Squeeze Your Lemon" and
"Who Pumped the Wind in My Doughnut?" -- double entendres which
are a great mark for the modern day blues musician.
The Ziggens-CHICKEN OUT!
This is the type of record which you go out with your friends and
have fun with. The Ziggns deliver high doses of surf punk with an
instant buzz of humor and satire. For example, the band plays
beats that sound like The Knack's "My Sharona" at the
introduction of "Goober Got a Girlfriend," and their singer says
"This is not 'My Sharona.'" Also, they attack cheeseheads on "The
Cheese in Wisconsin," where they talk about being shot at by a
farmer there. Is it a surprise that Zig Zags and Ziggens are
almost the same? Probably not.
Slightly Stoopid-SLIGHTLY STOOPID
Rasta punk with angst and oppression to the world. Slightly
Stoopid is hardly stupid, for they are very political just like
the reggae and ska bands from the Caribbean. Hard to believe that
this band is still teenagers. With titles such as "Civil
Oppression Dub," "Wake Up Hate," and "Smoke Rasta Dub," one can
see the direction the band is flowing. Check out the "Not So
Secret Track," which has the late Bradley Nowell of Sublime doing
bass and production, and make this release a must.
Sublime-ROBBIN' THE HOOD
MCA/Gasoline Alley Records
This reissue of the band's 1994 album is more shocking today than
when it was originally released. This release contained various
4-track recordings and some studio work at Mr. Brett of Epitaph
Records' stuido, West Beach Recorders. Highlights include a guest
appearance by Gwen Stefani of No Doubt on "Saw Red," the insane
ranting and ravings of Raleigh Theodore Sakers on his
soliloquies, and the "Lincoln Highway Dub," which is an
instrumental that was later reworked and transformed into their
hit "Santeria." Overall, a unique insight of where this band was
Sublime-WHAT I GOT 12"
This is an excellent sample of what the new album sounds like. It
contains the David Kahne mix of "What I Got" from the album,
"Doin' Time," "Get Ready," and "April 29, 1992 (Miami)." Plus it
has a rare, exlusive demo version of "What I Got (Total Access
Mix)" which is very different than all previously released
versions of this song, and it gives the word "dub" new meaning.
Even if you have a copy of the new album, get this for the last
mentioned track, for it is worth the total price of the release
Bozzio Levin Stevens-BLACK LIGHT SYNDROME
Rarely does a supergroup come together to perform a musical
masterpiece, but that is what drummer Terry Bozzio, who is best
known for his work with Frank Zappa and the 1980s pop group
Missing Persons, bassist Tony Levin, known for his work with
Peter Gabriel and King Crimson, and guitar wizard Steve Stevens,
who recorded with Billy Idol during the early 1980s, have done.
This album, recorded in only 4 days, stands out as a major
reinforcement for progressive rock for the 1990s and an
instrumental fury. Most tracks were recorded in one or two takes
with little overdubs, similar to jazz music. A 65:00-plus
Combining elements of European house, hip-hop, electronica, and
ambient music, Faithless begins the world and the dancehalls a
new sound to play with. The beats are fast, then they are slowed
down. The hit "Insomnia" is presented in its original form plus a
version called "Monster Mix Radio Edit," which cuts for radio and
tends to lose feeling. Also, the track "Baseball Cap" has a funky
riff which stays with your mind after you hear it. To be honest,
unless you are really into electronica, stay away from this
release, for it may be too much for you to handle.
Women of Sodom-BOOTS
Pussy Kitty Records/Castle von Buhler Records
Explicit sexual techno-rock with tons of dirty fun. Women of
Sodom love to beat around the bush and attack conservative
society with their raunchiness. With songs titled "Nightmore on
Dyke Street," "Manwich," "Boots," and "Watersports," one can only
imagine the hardcore outlook of these talented musicians. Full
blown, unadulterated, uncensored, uninhibited beats of lust
through music which shocks you. The band of the year.
Jonathan Fire Eater-THEY ALL GO HOME
Storng progressive indie rock with a major dose of spaced,
distorted feeback gutiars. Reminds one of a Fugs record played on
45 instead of its original 33 1/3. Jonathan Fire Eater enlightens
today's angst culture through sonic overdubs on such tunes as
"Station Coffee," "In-Patient Talent Show," and "I've Changed
Hotel." 11 tunes which may make your bleak work happy or make it
very dull. You decide.
Cheap Trick-CHEAP TRICK
Cheap Trick Records/Red Ant Entertainment
Finally, the band which we all grew up with through their
classics "I Want You to Want Me," "Surrender," and "Dream
Police," Cheap Trick is back with an album which demonstrates
that they are rock 'n roll icons. On this release, their first
for their own label, they do 11 strong, real rock numbers which
sound like the band has never gone away. All have single written
all over them with the post-modern sounding "Yeah Yeah" and "Baby
No More" standing out. Cheap Trick is a band, and they aren't a
cheap trick anymore.
Seasick Pirates-THE RETURN OF THE HELICOPTERMAN
Nuclear Blast America
German melodic punk in the vein of the Ramones and the Queers.
The Seasick Pirates do make the world wann react to society with
a major kick in the groin. Three chord guitar riffs, snotty
vocals, grunglike bass, and high hitting drums. "Surfin' Seasick"
is a Ramonish style number and is dedicated to this legendary
band, and their cover of Billy's Joel's "The Longest Time" is the
way the song should have been originally recorded if it was a
punk song. Bombastic punk.
LEARN/TEACH/PEACE/SHADOWFANE SPLIT TAPE
A Defiant Nation Records, P.O. Box 4501, Crofton, MD 21114
Need a tape to wake up with your neighbors and shake your house's
foundation? Then this is for you. Morbid Vomit plays distorted
noisecore-hardcore on deranged keyboards and violent guitars.
Political lyrics such as "Die Yuppie Scum" and "Right to Choose."
B.F.G. delivers us into hell and gets us ready for suffering
through their East Coast-style hardcore. Their message is "Death
to False Hardcore" and "Stop Killing." 5 tracks from each band.