PUNK-ROCK. Austin, Texas has always been well known as a sound home to a strong and striving punk scene and the ALTARS are a stalwart among Austin’s countless other note-worthy punk bands. This, their debut LP, originally self-released on CDR demo format and now duly given the vinyl treatment, is not a far departure from the bands' former outfits, STORM THE TOWER and SIGNAL LOST. Much like the aforementioned bands, this LP features 10 tracks centered on complex yet melodic guitar work coupled with pounding drums and bass and altogether framed and structured in aggressive and driving rhythms where the vocals are sung more than screamed.
false xmas (2011/KATORGA WORKS)
POST-PUNK/NEW-WAVE. [reduced price] ( ) is the vinyl debut of MERCHANDISE's David Vassalotti's pet project. How do you pronounce it? "false xmas" was originally released as a seldom-heard tape on Cult Maternal, but now the 2 tracks found its way on vinyl. This particular ( ) record finds David channeling NEW ORDER through a more lo-fi lens with even worse vocals reciting emotionally devastating prose. These 2 songs make up what is a perfect pop single. The band is called "( )" or "parenthesis".
LOST RIVERS, THE
my beatific vision (2013/THIS CHARMING MAN)
INDIE/POST-ROCK. "my beatific vision" musical journey begins in the middle of the '80s, builds ups some speed in the mid-'90s with the heroes of shoegaze and finally comes to a stand in NYC of the 2000s. What may sound like a rip-off quickly emerges as a precise observation on the scene, whose smart building blocks are put together as THE LOST RIVERS – the 3 guys from the countryside distill a hypnotic wall of sound without copying. Everything is loud, everything is short before overturning, all on the verge of tinnitus. Vinyl includes a digital download card.
fearing lost apocalyptic knowledge (2007/ HASHSHASHIN)
HARDCORE. Pittsburgh's F.L.A.K. offers a blistering fast hardcore LP that builds from the blunt guttural sounds of swedish and japanese hardcore to the riffage of Portland hardcore. Just flat, no frills, balls to the wall hardcore that is spat out in a venomous disdain for the real life. However F.L.A.K. also have an interest in the contemporary sound of Portland. F.L.A.K. are no TRAGEDY knock off - insted they incorporate some jangly bits and an ever so slight d-beat into a flat out galloping hardcore. FLAK are like a VOORHEES cover band from Portland. This lyrically bleak and dark sounding record has 11 tracks to follow up their self-titled 7".
HARDCORE. This is CURSED’s 3rd chapter in their shock and awe program and most likely their best release to date! CURSED leaves no mystery as to what they are trying to accomplish with the new album - it is clear this record is meant to hurt people. This is a much more violent and concise effort with songs woven together leaving little room left for the listener to recover, let alone breathe.
HARDCORE. Picking up where "plagues" left off, TRASH TALK's debut full-length delves deeper into the abyss surrounding their last chaotic release. Recorded in just under 2 days at Chicago's Electrical Audio and employing the genius of Steve Albini, TRASH TALK has continued to push the envelope of extreme music. Grinding guitars paired with heavy yet somber bass lines provide the battlefield for harsh dueling vocals to wage war over 12 instant classics.
the very best of (2011/RESURRECTION)
PUNK 'N' ROLL. This is a 4 song best of 7" from this short lived Bay-Area, California '60s style punk 'n' roll band. The self proclaimed "toughest band in California". Includes a ROLLING STONES cover too! Featuring the singer of the LA hardcore band RABIES, and the bass player from ANNIHILATION TIME. Limited one time pressing of 500.
covered in dust (2008/ART OF THE UNDERGROUND)
SINGER/SONGWRITER. MALCOLM BAULD returns from his position in the remarkable band THE FRENETICS with a debut full length album on Art of the Underground. For fans of THE WEAKERTHANS, LEATHERFACE and even BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN.
moment (2003/APE MUST NOT KILL APE/PER KORO)
POST/EMO-HARDCORE. Whatever you're going to call these 6 songs, it will be anything but average. This is not just another trendy emo-screamo-hardcore band. El colectivo TIDAL manages to ban 30min. of music on this vinyl in a blend so unique and touching that you can't just ignore it. The mixture makes this so special. Calm parts reminding of lying on a lonely beach in the Caribbean are interrupted by nervously driving riffs, and from time to time the vocalist starts to sing and the guitars play melodies so urgent and touching that you'll be left entirely stripped and exhausted after listening. All bands you could come up with as comparisons could never even closely describe the complexity of this piece of music. That said, if you like the bands that created the genre of emo-hardcore in the mid '80s, and those with the Spock haircuts, you shall like this too. This is a promise! [PK #035]
morning breath (2013/DEBT OFFENSIVE)
MELODIC/POP-PUNK. In the past few years the melodic-punk genre has been overrun by bands. It all seems to lack the urgency and sincerity of the pop-punk, like LIFETIME, EXIT CONDITION etc.. SABERTOOTH play raw, damaged melodic-punk. At times the 4 new tracks remind of KID DYNAMITE, and other times maybe a bit like Vancouver's UNFUN (whom SABERTOOTH's guitarist also moonlights as a member). Vinyl includes a digital diownload card.
2013 (2013/SORRY STATE)
GARAGE-PUNK-ROCK. [reduced price] Like their previous 2 full-length's for Sorry State, this new album both gives us the fix of jittery, nervous punk you've come to expect from the WHATEVER BRAINS while subtly expanding the band's sound in a number of non-obvious directions. In particular, there's a discernible dark synth-pop influence and big, brit-pop-style choruses on a couple of tracks. This album also has the band's most ambitious, layered production to date, the bright and clear mastering giving you equal pleasure whether you plan to blast this from your car speakers with all the windows down or take the headphone route down the BRAINS' sonic rabbit-hole. Vinyl includes a digital download card.
SKIN LIKE IRON
HARDCORE. [reduced price] SKIN LIKE IRON’s new LP, "arrival" features 10 songs that are mournful, somber and eerily melodic. Fusing an eclectic mixture of influences from BLACK FLAG, SIEGE, and even PIXIES, this album succeeds in accurately portraying SKIN LIKE IRON’s unique take on hardcore music. Huge guitar riffs combine with powerful bass lines and pounding rhythms to form dramatic compositions that are saturated with melody and atmosphere. "arrival" is a record about duality: hope and hopelessness. Beauty and ugliness. Virtue versus the failings of human nature. Vinyl comes with huge React Records sticker and includes a digital download card.
s/t (2009/SEARCH FOR FAME)
HARDCORE. This is the debut vinyl release from that new band outa Berlin. Basically DISCO VIETNAM playing straight-forward '80s reagan-era hardcore that really reminds of a straighter and tighter version of REPROACH or SURF NAZIS MUST DIE. Youthful, energetic d.i.y.-inspired hardcore played mean and fast. Another higly recommended Search For Fame release!
flowers and fireworks (2009/INKBLOT)
POST-HARDCORE. SPIRES, from Oakland pour their hearts out on this LP. With 10 tracks of heavy and melodic hardcore that move seamlessly between hushed tones, spacy guitar riffs and crushing torrents of sound, similar to the sounds of bands like early ENVY and BURIAL YEAR. This colored LP comes in a hand-screened cover and is numbered out of 500 copies.
HARDCORE. [reduced price] This is the 1st LP from SNAKE RUN, a band featuring members of VACANT STATE, SHOOK ONES and CONDOMINIUM. A definite influence of what was later became VACANT STATE, but without the ultra-stripped-down sound that is that band's trademark. The label calls it ROLLINS-era 'FLAG worship, but it's a lot more punk than that description would lead you to believe. Basically, this is rough and mean hardcore with some inventive bass playing and some unexpected riffing. Originally recorded in 2004 and put out on a short run of tapes, this has been one of the best releases from the Northwest. Limited to only 250 copies, so don't expect this to stick around forever.