Wednesday, February 26, 2014

NEW DINGLEBERRY RELEASES

OAK / INTOTHETIDE - SPLIT LP (Dingleberry) 
Both French bands on this split LP sound like the apocalypse is coming soon. IntoTheTide are slighty post-rock influenced, but their focus is on playing downtuned hardcore in a brutal, heavy and devastating way. Their songs combine influences ranging from the slower elements of Tragedy's neo-crust, the darkness of Isis and the musical force of Uranus. Oak from Strasbourg have a more typical post-rock sound. They write instrumental tunes, that ebb and flow. The guitar-work is the main event of Oak's atmospheric and epic soundscapes. Their side of this split LP features two tunes made with a tight, punchy sound, plenty of variations and an overall gloomy mood. Without doubt, IntoTheTide and Oak play in the first division of dark hardcore. Highly recommended! (Listen to it here)

VERBAL RAZORS - S/T LP (Dingleberry)
This nice LP is a true testament to uncompromising thrash-metal and crossover hardcore. If I didn't know it any better, I would think these songs were recorded back in the late 80s. Hailing from Tours, France Verbal Razors ride the divide between the directness of hardcore and the precision of metal. These thirteen tracks recall the classic sound of old bands like Cryptic Slaughter, Crumbsuckers, Nuclear Assault, Ludichrist and Wehrmacht. Things are based on tons of ripping speed metal riffs, frantic guitar-solos, straight pounding drum beats, really potent vocals and catchy sing-alongs. The lyrics are funny full of parodies on the scene. This is an overall great record that will enthuse fans of hardcore and metal alike. (Listen to it here)

WARFUCK - NEANTIFICATION LP (Dingleberry)
The bandname and the cover artwork bring up associations with filthy crust music, but Warfuck from Lyon, France dish up a flawless grindcore massacre. It's unbelievable, that this band plays in a two-piece line up. Even though they only use drums and guitar, the recordings succeed to create a full and energetic sound. You get fifteen merciless cuts of  lightening fast and discordant grindcore that is both original and brutal. The songs are short and to the point, but at the same time they are varied enough to be intersting over the full playtime of a LP. Everything is delivered with precision and technical perfection. Warfuck make an explosive mix of grindcore and some hints of neo-crust that is on par with genre heavyweights Nasum, Magrudergrind and Rotten Sound. (Listen to it here)

Thursday, February 20, 2014

FOUR NEW COMPILATION LPs

VA - GROUND ZERO NYC 2013 LP (Toxic State) 
Toxic State releases are the complete opposite to the hip and trendy sound of New York's current underground scene. The label documents the orginal raw, unpolished power of punk and hardcore. Inventive silkcreen artworks and the charm of a lo-fi tape production are two main characteritsica of a Toxic State record. "Ground Zero NYC 2013" documents today's New York punk and hardcore scene and it sounds a bit like a modern equivalent to "New York Thrash". You get fourteen tracks by fourteen bands and every single track is highly recommended. The compilation starts with La Misma, who play fast, snotty punkrock with some hints of garage and vocals sung in Portugese. Deformity crank out one dirty piece of rock'n'roll fronted by super gruff vocals. The Nomad tune is heavily infused by Japanese noisy hardcore simular to Confuse and Gai. Goosebumps recall the wild blasting hardcore of classic bands like The Fix, Koro and The Neos. Black Boot find a good balanca between frantic speed and powerful midtempo parts. Putrida sound like a product of classic Spanish and Japanese hardcore, so if you like both MG15 and Gauze you won't be disappointed here. The a-side ends with Anasazi, who are one of today's most exciting reincarnations of death-rock. Murderer sound like their track has been recorded 35 years earlier. The Mad and The Reactors wouldn't have done it any better. Next, Sad Boys  dish up raw and fast '82 UK style pogo punk in the vein of Vice Squad. Bort Gang remind me of classic Italian hardcore groups like Indigesti, Wretched and Declino. Crazy Spirit are probably the best known band on this compilation. They blast through a wild and blown out "The Germs on speed" punk anthem fronted by totally insane vocals. If you own any of Perdition's previous releases, you'll know, that they are one of today's best d-beat driven noisy hardcore groups and this song is no exception. The Dawn Of Humans tune delivers weird punk sounding like The Minutemen on hard drugs trying to be Negative Approach. The compilation ends with Hank Wood And The Hammerheads, who fuse the energy of 70s punk with the sleaziness of The Stooges. Get this this killer compilation! (Listen to it here)

VA - LIFT IT UP VOLUME 2 (Gutfeeling)
Generally, my typical musical horizon ranges from the 1960's to the present days, but of course there has also been written a lot of great music during the periods before. This compilation is a great example and it's a good basis to expand your taste of music. It features songs mastered from old shellac singles originally released in the 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s of the past century. The included bands and artist offer a colouful mixture of jazz, country, blues, r&b, swing and folk. Most of them are from the USA, but there also some French, Cuban and Danish artists included here. It's a true plessure to listen to the old, rough mono productions. All music still sounds fresh today and the label name totally fulfills its promises: this is good-feel music at the highest level. You get one song by each of the following groups: Slim and Slam, Bob Wills & his Texas Playboys, Bloom Rub, Tony Murena et son Ensemble Swing, Frank Ferera, Lightnin´ Hopkins, Lecuona Cuban Boys, Frankie Trumbauer and his Orchstra featuring Bix Beiderbecke, Harlem Kiddies med Vokal-Trio, Mickey Katz Mickey, Carl Kress & Dick McDonough, Al Miller & His Market Street Boys, Oscar Aleman Trio and Tampa Red. The LP comes with linernotes and informations about all songs and artists. (Listen to it here)

VA - MOBILISATION GENERALE. PROTEST AND SPIRIT JAZZ FROM FRANCE 1970-1976 2xLP (Born Bad)
This double LP compilation was quite an eye opener for me. I haven't known any of the included artist before, but after listening to it I knew, that I've missed an important chapter of music history. All French artists and groups included are heavily influenced by the sound of American revolutionary jazz and it's radical will to political change. Just like the black power movement this French free Jazz scene of the 1970s used music to destroy the established order and to create something new. The result sounds like a product of a radical search for something completely new, that sets up a connection between French chanson roots and the open-minded spirit of jazz music. That's how the recordings adventure into new territories combining sophisticated lyrics with gripping delivery, afro-beats, experimental multi-instrumentalism and some psychedelic influences. Most of the songs are focused on the charismatic spoken poetry. While I am able to appreciate the musical side to those songs, I wish I could understand much of the lyrics, but unfortunately I don't speak French. I'm sure, that I miss something great. The compilation includes songs by the following bands and artists:Alfred Panou & Art Ensemble Of Chicago, Brigitte Fontaine & Areski Belkacem, Atarpop 73 & Le Collectif Le Temps Des Cerises, RK Nagati, Frederic Rufin & Raphael Lecomte, Francois Tusques, Mahjun, Full Moon Ensemble, Baroque Jazz Trio, Michel Roques, Chene Noir and Beatrice Arnac. All killer, no filler and you'll start collecting their LPs after listining to this impressing compilation. A must have! (Listen to it here)

VA - ROSEHIP, SCALLOP, DANCER LP (Posh Isolation)
Denmark's Posh Isolation played a prominent role in the development of "mysterious guy hardcore" (what a stupid name for a genre), but in the last couple of years the label has adopted a new musical approach focused on electronic music and postpunk. The cold, gloomy and mysterious mood is the only constant that remained. "Rosehip, Scallop, Dancer" was compiled over the last three years and features ten artist with influences ranging from synth-pop to wave, postpunk, industrial, techno and noise. The LP kicks off with Street Drinkers, who sound like a slowmotion version of 80s UK wave with haunting vocals simular to Ian Curtis. Kallarbarnen write music based on a right instinct for improvisations and a threatening mood. Croation Amor fuse samples of flowing water with warm and dreamy synth-pop sounds. "We Lose Them Through Our Hands" by Marching Church leads into cold wave-drone territory. The a-side ends with Var, who contribute an instrumental tune, that balances between wave and pumping techno sounds. The flipside begins with Sand Circles, who underlay ice-cold synth-pop with incomprehensible vocal parts. White create disturbing and noisy drone sounds. Next Amphetamine Logic offer a scary industrial-noise sound collage. Age Coin recall the sound of early techno while adding a dark feel to their pounding beats. Last but not least White Void are comparable with a more noisy version of The Smiths. (Listen to it here)

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

FIVE NEW 60s INSPIRED LPs

THE LIMINANAS - COSTA BLANCA LP (Trouble In Mind)  
France is the home of today's largest and best European 60s inspired music scene and there is no doubt that The Liminananas from the South of the country are one of it's flagships. In the past four years this duo has put out several highly recommended 7"s and LPs on labels like Hozac or Trouble In Mind. "Costa Blanca" features some of their best material so far. The record recalls the vibe of 60s psych and garage in an asbolutely outstanding way. The Liminanas' sound spectrum draws influences from a rich variety of different influences ranging from classic French progressive avant-music to Velvet Undergrounds drone-psych and fuzzy '60s garage-pop. Combining chansons like mixed gender vocals with murderous grooving drums, hypnotizing percussions, an undercurrent of droning organ sounds, banjo parts and long-drawn fuzzy guitar licks the band has built one of today's most unique approaches to 60s retro music. From start to finish, the record’s thirteen gloomy tunes create an extremely addictive and dense sound. Great! (Listen to it here

PAMPERS - S/T LP (In The Red) 
After two highly recommended 7"s on their own Jack Shack label here's finally the first full lenght by Brooklyn based garage punks Pampers. The twelve songs meld thrashy, raw 90's garage with pop sensibility and melodic hooks simular to Marked Men and The Hex Dispensers. But to Pamper's credit, this record has a lot more going for it besides just mixing those two influences. Basically, this whole LP is a monster based on a wall of distorted guitar hate, combining the nasty ugliness of Pissed Jeans with a heavy 60s fuzz sound. The one-beat drums are first of all heavy pounding, but thanks to their constant repetition they partly develop an almost hypnotic effect. The main focus, however, is on a hard, fast delivery of brutal punk tunes fronted by rapid echo-vocals. Pampers sound like a fresh breath of garage-punk, that's heavier, groovier and sweeter than a lot of this genre's mediocre music. (Listen to it here)
 
THE PUSSYWARMERS & REKA - I SAW THEM LEAVING LP (Wild Honey) 
Following two albums on Voodoo Rhythm The Pussywarmers from Lugano in the Italian speaking part of Switzerland are back with their third full length. This time they've joined the forces with their Hungarian friend Reka Csiszer, who is responsible for many of the vocal parts. Musically the record falls in line with the folk inspired Wild Honey labelroster including bands like Mojomatics, Movie Star Junkies and Goodnight Loving, but at the same time The Pussywarmers don't forget their own unique flavour. On "I saw them leaving" they take the 1920s Jazz and weird Eastern European gypsy influences of their previous releases and push it forward with a stronger focus on retro rock'n'roll and pop harmonies inspired by music from the 50s and 60s. The songs capture a sweet, yet darkened psychedelic vibe based on warm organ sounds, whailing feedbacks, crunchy distortion, shimmering guitar leads and Reka's potent, dreamy vocal style. Overall, the record succeeds in creating a surreal and weird hybrid of various genres and musical eras. Fantastic! (Listen to it here)

LES RIVALS - S/T LP (Casbah / Mauvaise Foi)
On their selftitled debut full lenght, Les Rivals from Paris deliver an absolutely fresh take on 60s inspired music. The songs weave deftly through the beat pop-sensibilty of The Kinks, the rawness of your favourite "Back From The Grave" garage heroes, the celestial psych sound of Velvet Underground's first LP and the raw directness of classic rock'n'roll. Les Rivals bring an extremly varied and heartfelt record driven by sweet organ harmonies and tons of melodies, that won't leave your head right after the first listen. The top notch soulful vocal delivery with it's plenty of variations and British accent is another main event here. The occasional use of several different instruments like twelve-string guitar, sitar or oboe seems like a reflection of the innovative and open-minded approach of Les Rivals' music. If you have an ear for classic, but forward-thinking rock'n'roll bound by neither cliche nor pretension, this record is for you. (Listen to it here)

SUSPICIOUS BEASTS - USED TO BE BEAUTIFUL 12" (Alien Snatch!) 
Along with Suspicious Beasts' second "Never Bloom" album the great Alien Snatch! label has also reissued their first 12". which originally came out on Black Hole in 2011. With an incredible energy, Tokyo-based, Suspecious Beatsts' sun-soaked pop is injected with the stomp of vintage garage, the directness of classic Rip Off and Crypt releases and the pop sensibility of 60s folk and psych. Some songs are reminiscent of Teengenerate, others venture into a sweeter sunshine pop and deeper psych territory, but they are all delivered with soul, catchiness and power. There's an undercurrent of rambling country and folk edges just about everywhere giving the recordings an fresh, exciting and unmistakble note. The catchy as hell vocals and the tons of addictive organ melodies are two more main reasons for the record's feel-good effect. Think of a more pop-orientated product of Black Lips, Jacuzzi Boys and Demon's Claws. (Listen to it here)

Friday, February 14, 2014

FOUR NEW POSTPUNK/INDIE/ELECTRO LPs

KILLERLADY - S/T LP (Beau Travail) 
Killerlady is the moniker of Martin Kircher, vocalist of the long running German goth-punk group EA80. With his solo-project he explores uncharted territory and goes in a very differrent musical direction. The title of the opening track "From Ohio To New Zealand" seems to provide the orientation for his musical approach. Killerlady neither sounds like Dead C nor like 90s Columbus bands, but the music is made with same kind of improvisation and weirdness. Fans of Siltbreeze releases won't be disappointed here. Kircher uses electro-drone sounds, keyboard melodies, heavy distorted guitar noise, a few drum-computer beats and his dark distinct voice to create his unsetting and spooky tunes. The album offers music, that stands out from the norm. It's raw, punishing sound underlines the song's hypnotic and ruined feel. Some of them turn into pur noise, some are based on 80s minimal wave influences, some are focused on the loud noisy garage guitar, but all are great in it's own way. The LP comes in a die-cut-cover with a colour photo pasted on the backcover. (Listen to it here)

RIDDARNA - UNDER JORDEN LP (Gaphals)
Seen from today, a lot of music that was written in the '90s doesn't sound very sensational, but the '90s were a decade that helped to breach musical borders. They opened the possibilty for the develepoment of new genres and gave birth to a more varied sound of alternative music. Gotheburg's Riddarna sound like this time had never ended. Drawing from a range of influences that span across the whole decade of 90s underground music they bring a refreshing and distinct element to their indie-rock sound. Riddarna's music is first of all rooted in the sound of Sub Pop grunge and indie-rock in the vein of Fugazi and Sonic Youth. The muscular guitar-work and the varied vocals all sung in Swedish language are the main events of this incredebly good album. The strong ryhythm section based on droning bass lines and pounding drum beats adds some hints of Chicago style noise-rock. It's impossible not to like Riddarna, if you have any enthusiams for 90s underground music left in you. (Listen to it here)


SLEAFORD MODS - AUSTERITY DOGS LP (Harbinger Sound)
Sleaford Mods are one of today's most interesting interpretations of punk. Since 2007 this UK based duo has released a bunch of overseen CD only releases, but lately it seems like a bigger public got aware of their class and orginality. Last year they've put out a series of three highly recommended vinyl singles along with this new album. Their music is rooted in the history of classic British postpunk, but instead of copying the sound of the 80s D.I.Y. underground scene Sleaford Mods add rather atypical influences like hip-hop to give their tunes their own unmistakable flavour. They take the driving bass lines from their Messthetics favourtites and fuse it with angry spoken vocals, poundig groove and electronic minimalism. Sleaford Mods are often described as "Punk-Hop" and that petty much brings it to the point. "Austerity Dogs" is a singular example of true self-expression and angry opposition-music. (Listen to it here)

SYBIANN - SPORE LP (Shit Music For Shit People)
The Italian Shit Music For Shit People label is actually well known for it's focus on garage and punk, but with this LP by SybiAnn from Flori, Italy they enter a completly new musical terrain. SybiAnn nibble on influenes of  techno, electro, and psych in ways that led to an absolutely distinct sound. You can hear a little of Kraftwerk's electro pop just about everywhere, but at the same time the album fuses influences of several different eras of electronic music ranging from the psychedelic sounds of 70s krautrock, cold 80s minimal wave, early techno and adrenalized cosmic disco. The songs balance between electronic hypno-drone, cold synthesizer sounds and more dancable elements driven by montonic drum-computer beats or groovy tribal rhythms. Most of them are pure instrumental pieces. "Spore" sounds both modern and classic and it's nothing but a modern masterpiece of electronic music. (Listen to it here)

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

FOUR NEW PUNK AND POSTPUNK LPs

BELGRADO - S/T LP (Static Age/ Discos Enfermos/ Oficyana Paranoja)
Belgrado from Barcelona, Spain are the most important European answer to the current revival of early 80s UK wave-punk. Following two 7"s on La Vida Es Un Mus their first full album features probably their best material so far. It finds the band exploring familiar territory in the realm of dark postpunk. The recordings shows obvious similarities to the sound of classic bands like Crisis, The Mob, Warsaw and Killing Joke. With echoing riffs, catchy choruses and a driving rhythm section the ten songs create a cold melancholic feel, but at the same time Belgrado don't forget to add a healthy dose of punk roots and tons of energy. The songs are dark, but due to their aggressive and straight up songwriting they don't turn into slow gloomy dance stuff. Even though Belgrado don't create something completly new, they are damn good in what they reproduce. (Listen to it here)


BOSONOGO DJETINJSTVO / BASTINADOS - SPLIT 12" (DHP-AK47, Byllepest, Neanderthal-Stench)
The cover artwork looks like this record came out on Profane Existence in the mid 90s and both Croatian bands on this split 12" also seem to share the same political D.I.Y. attitude. Musically they sound quite different. Taking inspiration from a wide variety of styles ranging from postpunk, Ebullition style emo and 80s hardcore Bosonogo Djetinjstvo from Zadar have developed their own signature style. Midtempo parts made with plenty of variations and underlayed with great meldodies all of a sudden turn into fast, blasting hardcorepunk. The gruff vocals are another main event of this highly recommended side of this split release. Hailing from Zagreb Bastinados recall the sound of late 90s punk'n'roll. Their five songs are influenced by both the ferocity of hardrock and the power and aggression of punk. This four-piece is attacking you with a barrage of heavy AC/DC influenced guitar riffage combined with a driving rhythm and harsh female vocals guaranteed to leave you wanting more. (Listen to it here)

FLESH WORLD - S/T 12" (La Vida Es Un Mus) 
Flesh World are a San Francisco based allstar group consisting of members of Needles, Brilliant Colors, Limp Wrist and others. On the surface, their vinyl debut is part of the new trend of post-punk but it's defenitely more than just another record on the dark punk side. Flesh World sound like a breath of fresh air. They set themself apart by horning their songs to near perfection with the help of a large variety of influences ranging from UK postpunk to 70s punk and a slight touch of pop-punk. The six tunes are loaded with infectious hooks, addictive guitar licks and an undercurrent of melodies, while packing enough punch to maintain a straight on punk feel. Flesh World write moody, driving punk tunes fronted by some incredibly good and distinctive vocals. This 12" is worth it simply for the opening track "Sturdy Swiss Hiker" and the remaining songs are of a nearly equal quality. (Listen to it here)

SHOPPING - CONSUMER COMPLAINTS LP (Milk) 
The first full lenght by United Kingdom's trio Shopping takes up where they left of with their brilliant 7" vinyl debut. They take influences from the glorious days of both UK and New York postpunk, but in the end it's their own fresh and unmistakable style. "Consumer Complaints" features thirteen highly exciting and addivtive tracks, offering up an unorthodox blend of post-punk. Rhythmical yet funky guitar melodies, driving bass lines and minimal drum beats provide the foundation for their clean and groovy sound filled with tons of weaving harmonies and delivered with a clear and crisp production. Trash Kit's Rachel Aggs' unique vocal style is another main secrets of this post-punk masterpiece. This LP fits in perfectly with those who love the Messthetics compilation series. Imagine a 21st century product of The Au Pairs, Bush Tetras, Kleenex and The Slits. Fantastic! (Listen to it here)

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

FOUR NEW ROCK LPs

FUZZ - S/T LP (In The Red
Ty Segall's solo works and his collaborations with Mikal Cronin and White Fence have been focused on influences from the 60s. With Fuzz Ty Segall steps forward into the 70s. And as if that was not enough he sits behind the drums and doesn't play the guitar. San Francisco based trio Fuzz dishes up a heavy dose of tough as nails hardrock. Their selftitled debut album balances between straight blasting protopunk, hook-filled rock and jam-oriented instrumental elements. The focus is on the loud fuzzy guitar with it's mixture of heavy riffs, incredible solos and central melodies. Ty Segall's typical harmonic vocal style is supplemented by a slight Ozzy influence. His drumming and the whole rhythm section give the songs a sleazy killer groove. The eight ferocious, and unpolished tracks recall a kind of music from the 70s, that later paved the way for the development of both punk and metal. If they had showed up fourty years earlier, Fuzz would have made a cozy addition to the Bonehead Crunchers compilations. A total banger! (Listen to it here)

GONGA - CONCRESCENCE LP (Tonehedge)
Just take a look at the band-photo on which the band jams on sandy terrain and you can already guess this could probably be a stoner-rock album. But it's a mistake to believe, that UK based trio Gonga only recalls the classic sound of Kyuss, Fu Manchu and Queens Of The Stone Age. Instead, they've developed their own more jam-oriented style. Their extented instrumental tunes are based on a large variety of different influences ranging from typical slow and heavy stoner riffs to the ferocity of classic rock and the complexness of metal. "Concrescence" is full of amazing guitar-riffs and brilliant solo parts, the rhythm section provides a crushing groove and everyone in the band is really comfortable with their instruments. There is no darkness here, just super large riffs and melodies unfurled with taste and power. "Concrescence" is a complex and fresh record, that sounds a bit like stoner version of post-rock. Very nice! (Listen to it here)

THE OSCILLATION - FROM TOMORROW LP (All Time Low)
"From Tomorrow" is already the third full lenght by United Kingdom's space rockers The Oscillation. On the surface the group shows strong simililarities to the mainstream psych-rock of Black Mountain, The Black Angels and Wooden Shjips. But behind the fat production and it's slight mass appeal they provide more than just a pure imitation of the previous mentioned bands. With metronomic rhythms, repetitive groove, spaced out guitars and rasping epics, the record achieves an experimental, hypnotic sound. Even if The Oscillation don't forget to add their own personal note it is impossible not to think of Pink Floyd, Hawkwind and Spacemen 3 while listening to this album. Loud wobbling guitars and warm, earthy sounds are paired with deep drone-psych and some middle-eastern influences. Despite all the spacieness The Oscillation keep things straightforward and only a few songs turn into epic psychedelic trips. Without doubt, this album stands out from the modern wave of boring psych-rock clones. (Listen to it here)

PURLING HISS - PAISLEY MONTAGE LP (Richie)
In contrast to their previous "Water On Mars" full lenght this records represents the kind of music and lo-fi production Philadelphia's Purling Hiss have previously been best known for. "Paisley Montage" was originally a tour-only cassette release. The songs were recorded in several basements over the course of 2007-2011. The LP features the bands most difficult to acces recordings so far. The a-side is titled "guitar damage" and consists of three parts. The first one is the most typical Purling Hiss song here and the only one with vocals. This track sounds like it could have been taken from their "Public Service Announcement" masterpiece, because it offers the same mixture of blown out protopunk and 90s Dinosaur Jr indie-rock pop sensibility. "Guitar Damage" part two and three are weird experimental fragments made with modified guitar sounds. The five parts of "Paisley Dommage" on the b-side sound like several different unfinished ideas with a musical spectrum ranging from experimental jamming to warm drone sounds and more structured 70s rock. Mike Polizze's extend guitar destruction is the main event of this weird piece of vinyl and that's enough to make "Paisley Montage" another great Purling Hiss album. (Listen to it here)

Thursday, February 6, 2014

unreleased KNOTS song

KNOTS 
New York's Knots released their one and only 7" back in 1980. This double a-side single has become a true kbd punk classic. "Action" is a genius direct punk songs with similarities to the Dead Boys, while "Heartbreaker" on the flipside stands out with it's incredible hooks and powerpop melodies. I'm writing this, because Knots' guitarist and songwriter Joey Pinter has uploaded an old Knots song taken from the same tape they recorded their 7" and you can download it for free from SoundCloud. "Glad To Be Alive" is a slower sleaze rock influenced tune comparable with The Heartbreakers and New York Dolls. Don't miss it! (Listen to it and download it here)

NEW 7"s PART 6 OF 6

BRETT SMILEY - VA VA VA VOOM 7" (Sing Sing) 
This is some totally incredible glam rock and protopunk material! Brett Smiley was born in the USA, but she was musically active in the UK during the glam rock boom in the early and mid 70s. Back then she only released this double a-side single in 1974. In the same year she also recorded a full album, that came out thirty years later on RPM Records. "Va Va Va Voom" is a killer tune driven by Smiley's tantalizing vocal style. The addictive chorus part with a great saxophone melody in the background won't leave right after the first listen. This is the kind of song you want to take right to the next party. "Space Ace" on the flipside starts rather unspectecular and quiet, but the song develops into something great and captivating with multiple instruments coming in. (Listen to it here

BERLIN - S/T 7" (Slyngel) 
Sweden's Slyngel Rekords is a new label with a focus on Swedish punkrock from the late 70s and early 80s. They don't put out reissues. Instead, each of their four 7"s features so far unreleased recordings. The label is run by four guys including Peter from the great Killed By Death Records blog - an enthusiast of early punkrock. This beeing said this 7" is nothing but a winner record. If Berlin had put out these three tracks in 1979, the single would have gained the status of a classic. Berlin give you everything that makes punk so great. They write two minute blasts made with razor sharp riffs, great melodies, catchy choruses and an incredible straight forwardness. In contrast to most other early punk bands the recordings standout with a precise and tight way of playing  Berlin later became Chatterbox, who put out two fantastic 7"s and one full LP. Be fast to get a copy of this 7", because it's limited to 300 copies only. (Listen to it here)

THE BUSINESS - HARRY MAY 7" (Ugly Pop) 
Some people say Oi! music is silly, violent and crappy. This might but true, but I have no problem with that. Along with Cock Sparrer and Blitz The Business most likely embody what Oi! should sound like. Their "Suburban Rebels" LP is nothing but a genre-defining classic and their debut 7" from 1981 is abosultely equivalent in quality. Things are based on nasty vocals with a heavy Cockney accent, tons of great melodies, simple but great guitar riffs and addictive choruses made with sing alongs sounding like they were sung by a mob of hooligans on the way to the football stadium. "Harry May" is a kind of song that's diffucult to hear without thinking about alcohol and the vocals start with "Come On". How cool is that? "Employers Black List" is yet another damn good workin class anthem. (Listen to it here)

LOST KIDS - COLA FREAKS 7" (Sing Sing)
Sing Sing has finally reissued the most essential record in the history of Danish punk. Lost Kids' "Cola Freak" 7" is nothing but a true classic of killed by death punk and it's one of the best early European punk singles released outside the United Kingdom. Between 1978 and 1981 the band put out three more singles and two full LPs, that are all worth it. Have a look at the frontcover and you can already guess, that this bunch of weirdos with horror make-up won't dissapoint you. Lost Kids took the vibe of the '77 UK punk boom to create their own unique brand of punkrock. The songs are fronted by some catchy as hell mixed gender vocals not unlike early X recordings, but sung in Danish language. The non-stop guitar solos are another main secret of this three track single. I'm still not sure if "Cola Freaks" or "Alle Taler" is my favourite track. But one thing is absolutely certain: they are both killer tunes and "R├Ądden Dig" is also only a little bit behind them. A must have!(Listen to it here)

TBC - MUSIK I PLAST 7" (Re-Ken) 
It's simply unbelievable how many punk singles came out in Sweden between 1977 and 1982. As to the quantity of punk releases back then this small country ranks behind the USA and the UK on third place. TBC put out their "Musik I Plast" 7" in 1978. A posthumously released "Live" 7" followed in 1981. One look on the frontcover is all you need to realize that the punk fashion had no influence on this bunch of ugly looking rockers with some really horrible haircuts. Also musically it seems like they pimped up their preference for 70s rock and protopunk with the '77 punk boom they were surrounded by. They even use a harmonica and it doesn't suck at all. The double guitar attack with a mix of rythmical riffage and short leads is paired with a sleazy groove and great vocals all sung in Swedish language. All three tracks are killer no filler. Thanks a lot to Re-Ken for making this classic available again! (Listen to it here)

TRUE BELIEVERS - ACCEPT IT 7"(HoZac) 
This is an official reissue of True Believers one and only 7" released in 1980. It's almost impossible to find a copy of the original pressing so thanks a lot to HoZac for bringing this treasure to daylight. True Believers featured Mike Rep and Tommy Jay, two of the most influental songwriters from Ohio's infamous underground scene. They both recorded several solo records and played together in such great groups as Mike Rep & The Quotas and Ego Summit. Back then True Believers were their first band that played live shows. Even if the single came out during a time when punk was the big thing, it's musically more rooted in the sound of the 60s and early 70s. The titletrack is an incredible catchy killer tune, that combines influences ranging from psych to garage and protopunk. The flipside offers two tracks made with guitar and vocals only sounding like some lost Ego Summit recordings. (Listen to it here)