Soft Shoulder - It's A Small World After

(…) as fo­cused as they haven't been in a long while (…) i wrote about their pre­vi­ous al­bum Smile Building's Ex­it. Tempe, Ari­zona group Soft Shoul­der then be like: "Hold my beer…" and come around the cor­ner with yet an­oth­er LP, record­ed around the same time as its pre­de­ces­sor and pre­sent­ing their sound in an even more snap­py and com­pelling light. Their unique blend con­sist­ing of both con­tem­po­rary and an­cient post punk mag­ic tricks, old­school noise rock and dis­tinct­ly no wave- and '80s The Fall-in­formed noise ex­per­i­ments has nev­er had more catchy ap­peal and sparkle than on this record.

Al­bum-Stream →

Gremlin - 1-800-GREMLIN

Lux­u­ry new fod­der for garage- and egg­punk afic­i­na­dos by this Cin­ci­nati, Ohio group. Soft Vi­o­lence and Why Fight res­onate the quirky mad­ness of groups like Prison Af­fair, Nuts, Beer, Cher­ry Cheeks and Pringue but ex­tend that aes­thet­ic with a dis­tinct psy­che­del­ic feel trans­port­ed main­ly through the poly­phon­ic vo­cals here. The lat­ter ten­den­cies are al­so leav­ing their mark on Null Fu­ture, which ex­pert­ly treads in old­school garage punk ter­ri­to­ry re­sult­ing in a vibe á la Mononeg­a­tives with a more purist fuzz punk edge. Clos­ing track It Goes On, then, close­ly re­sem­bles the kraut-y psy­ched-out post punk vibes of fel­low Cincin­nati groups The Drin and The Serfs, sug­gest­ing some of the same folks might be at work here.

Al­bum-Stream →

Paranoias - Chemical Sustain

Af­ter a promis­ing de­mo fol­lowed by what struck me as a kin­da rushed sound­ing de­but EP strug­gling to add sub­stance and shape to their rather ba­sic rock'n'roll for­mu­la, the Perth group's first full length fi­nal­ly has them op­er­at­ing right in the goldilocks zone again. Grant­ed, this still ain't the most orig­i­nal thing garage punk has ever seen but these songs sim­ply work and it's hard not to be ex­cit­ed by their fran­tic en­er­gy com­ing across a bit like a mix of ear­ly Ner­vosas, Vexx, Ex-Cult and, more re­cent­ly, Cel Ray with fur­ther bits and pieces rem­i­nis­cent of groups á la Piss Test, The Neu­ros, Gen Pop and The Aban­dos.

Al­bum-Stream →

TGRX - Turbo23

That's the dude from The Uglies bark­ing here, right? These aus­tralians' new EP ain't en­tire­ly dis­sim­i­lar to the lat­ter group's out­put, push­ing the whole thing in­to a more quirky, ad­ven­tur­ous di­rec­tion though, fre­quent­ly hav­ing some Use­less Eaters or Know­so feel to it in ad­di­tion to quite a bit of musty dun­geon-es­que vibes through­out the whole thing.

Al­bum-Stream →

Busted Head Racket & Billiam - Genetic Southern Hemisphere Christmas

Two cur­rent pow­er­hous­es of weirdo garage- and synth punk join forces for this neat new lit­tle EP and guess what: It sounds ex­act­ly like you'd ex­pect and all i can fur­ther say is what the fuck is not to like about that propo­si­tion? The shit rules!

Termite - Termite Night Demo

Bamm! Ex­quis­ite new shit in the realms of garage-in­fest­ed old­school hard­core may­hem brought to us by a group from Perth, Aus­tralia, re­mind­ing me of acts in the vein of G.U.N., ear­ly Elec­tric Chair, Ce­ment Shoes, Cri­sis Man, Cü­lo and Chain Whip.

Al­bum-Stream →

Beta Máximo - Creo que E​.​T. es Melvin

Span­ish noise pop over­lords Be­ta Max­i­mo re­turn with a strong new batch of tunes. Hard to be­lieve their pro­lif­ic out­put be­gan just some­time last sum­mer… Start­ing out with what i'd con­sid­er more of an egg­punk-aes­thet­ic, they've con­stant­ly kept chang­ing things up, grad­u­al­ly evolv­ing in­to a some­what slow­er, dreamy and slight­ly shoegaze-y di­rec­tion and these new songs strike me as the most re­al­ized and well-round­ed stuff we've heard from them re­cent­ly.

Al­bum-Stream →

The Abdo Men - Ulcer Anthology: Laff Your Way To Total Destruction

What­ev­er there is to be found out about this Cincin­nati, Ohio group is cloaked in a veil of un­cer­tain­ty, not helped in the least by that kin­da stereo­typ­i­cal "los­er band" his­to­ry giv­en on this cassette's band­camp page. So, prob­a­bly, there are folks known from groups like The Serfs, The Drin, Crime of Pass­ing and Mo­tor­bike at work here and at least some of the songs on this can be traced back to the year 2019, when they first ap­peared on the Pedes­tri­an Sen­ti­ments EP. Oth­er­wise i'm re­al­ly not too sure if any of the de­tails giv­en are to be be­lieved. You can't ar­gue with the mu­sic though, which kicks ass from start to fin­ish, in some way evok­ing the aes­thet­ics, vary­ing fi­deli­ty and styl­is­tic va­ri­ety of gold­en era Guid­ed By Voic­es, oth­er­wise rough­ly os­cil­lat­ing be­tween jan­g­ly pow­er pop in the vein of, say, Bed Wet­tin' Bad Boys or Bad Sports in tracks like Cow­ard Of The State, Wannabe (A Star) and Sil­ver Queen; grimy psy­che­del­ic garage rock (Didn't Win The Lot­tery, Ob­nox­ious And A Neu) as well as a cou­ple of catchy melod­ic garage punk smash­ers car­ry­ing the sig­na­ture of groups á la Boo­ji Boys, Tyvek and Par­quet Courts. It's Been A Bad Week kin­da re­sem­bles the garage-drenched noise aes­thet­ics of A Place To Bury Strangers, Peyton's Kids has sort of a Woolen Men feel to it and through­out, the folk-in­fused post punk of ear­li­er Chronophage comes to mind more than once.

Al­bum-Stream →

Tyvek - Overground

Al­ways a thing of beau­ty, a new LP by Detroit's wild­ly in­flu­en­tial pi­o­neers of the mid-aughts to 2010s wave of US garage punk groups. The first thing catch­ing your ear on this one is the added sax­o­phone of Emi­ly Roll, adding s slight­ly dif­fer­ent kind of tex­ture to this re­lease. Oth­er­wise, this is the sig­na­ture Tyvek sound we all know and love, made up of kin­da sim­plis­tic yet equal­ly ra­zor sharp riffs and hooks coun­ter­act­ed by their some­what loose and slop­py, re­laxed and strum­my pre­sen­ta­tion, all of which sur­ley served as an in­spi­ra­tion to lat­er groups of the Strange At­trac­tor, Par­quet Courts, Shark Toys or UV Race va­ri­ety!

Al­bum-Stream →

Cel Ray - Piss Park

Yet an­oth­er kick­ass EP by Chicago's Cel Ray, pick­ing right up where they left off on their Cel­lu­lar Ray­mond EP ear­li­er this year. I might be re­peat­ing my­self here but once again their in­ven­tive and play­ful sound kin­da strikes me as a com­bi­na­tion of some of the past decade's great­est fe­male front­ed groups á la Vexx, BB and the Blips, Neg­a­tive Scan­ner, Gen Pop or Amyl and the Snif­fers on one hand, while al­so be­ing some­what rem­i­nis­cent of that cur­rent breed of squig­gly garage-meets-post punk groups like Ura­ni­um Club, Re­al­i­ty Group, Pat­ti, Dumb or R.M.F.C..

Al­bum-Stream →