The Disappearing Cassette

The new Oxford Dictionary is removing ‘cassette tape’ from it’s newest edition – they need to make space for “re-tweet” and “mankini.”  Par for the course I guess, since Sony discontinued the Walkman a year earlier.  I recently got a new vehicle, and low and behold no tape deck.  It’s been a change, but probably one everyone made quite some time ago.  Although there are enough niche tape labels for Wikipedia to even include a blurb on it;

“In recent years, the audio cassette format has seen a revival with independent record labels (“indie” labels) preferring to issue releases in this format due to its low cost and the difficulty in sharing tape music over the internet. Underground and DIY communities release regularly, and sometimes exclusively, on cassette format, particularly in experimental music circles and to a lesser extent in hardcore punk, screamo, and black metal circles, out of a fondness for the format.”

The ‘mix tape’ as an idea is also still kicking around on Pates Tapes.  Hundreds of hours of music from a mixtape maker fanatic. A good way to hear something different.  Streams on your iPhone too.  Check it out –

It’s been on at our house a lot.  Mabel likes a lot of the swing and bebop tapes. I think her favorite is anything by The Andrew Sisters.

The South “Sick Pits Bro Sesh” 7″

This 7″ was released in June 2003 by Paul of Perpetual Motion Machine Records and myself with Dead Tank Records, just in time for the band’s Summer tour.  540 copies on black vinyl. 100 were packaged in two-color silkscreened covers for tour and 440 were packaged in one color offset printed covers.

It’s a quick and urgent four song followup to the debut “Chomp! Chomp! Chomp!” LP I had released a year prior.  The trio known as The South were from St. Augustine, Fl and consisted of Jacob Hamilton on guitar, Jeff McNally on bass, and Ryan Verzall on drums.  Think chaotic and dynamic hardcore.  In the past, references have been made to Palatka, Eurich, End Of The Century Party and Assfactor 4, but these dudes cover all that ground and more with this solid release. 

Download it here.

Current Playlist – Music I Got Online Edition

Awesome Tapes From Africa Blog

Yes! Bare witness to the  Awesome Tapes From Africa Blog!!  Before our missionaries visited and hit hard the message that homosexuals are bad. And before the local governments proposed a bill imposing the death sentence of homosexuals… they made love music, not war.

And really good music. The tape hiss is the real deal, and the cover art can’t be beat.  Most of the tapes posted are from current groups / groups from around the last ten years.

This tape pictured though? Woubeshet Feseha, 1976.

Black Moth Super Rainbow.

What a horrible band name.  It may be increasing apparent to some that I don’t get out quite as much these days as I used too.  So forgive me if this is some lame hipster shit. It sounds like it could be, but it also sounds interesting.  My references for this kind of stuff are all older – something akin to psychedelic folk pop between Strawberry Fields and a Boards of Canada / Beck collaboration. I looked up some pictures of them and got to see some of the covers of the records, and now I’m regretting even posting that I like this record.  It looks like they are trying too hard to be eccentric assholes. The kind I’d talk to once and promptly spend the rest of my days trying to evade.  Dandelion Gum is the only one I downloaded, though you can presumably get them all here.  They have a Myspace, and you can just listen to them there.  Sun Lips is a good song.  Thank you, Pittsburgh.

Woven Bones

Dear Andy, you used to live in Jacksonville.  You had some ups and downs but it’s all good and now you moved.  We mostly only hear about you through this band.  Which I’m liking.  No one really mentions Providence Union much anymore.   It reminds of me being in Andy’s room and him talking on and on about the Rolling Stones.  I’m thinking that reference won’t help you understand the music much.  You can listen on Myspace. Psych-punk revival maybe?  I like it.  Let’s hope the wash of guitars doesn’t turn to a wail.

Tourist Trap

So this band once existed for about a year in Jacksonville, Florida called Tourist Trap.  Forgive the slight bias I have as a guitarist in the band, but we were really good.  It’s funny how bands can exist as a flash in the pan, or inversely, something akin to institution – sometimes faltering, but always there.  Unending.  As a band, we all got more or less busy with other things or uninterested.  Or maybe just the  subconscious burning out vs fading away on our heels got the best of us.  Maybe that’s saying too much, being too serious, for what is essentially just another hardcore punk band.  Although, Jacksonville doesn’t have many of those – so our time in the (Florida) sun was enjoyed.

This video’s introduction with the Reax logo is all too fitting.  Remember when Tom from Jaxscene worked there? For like 4 months?  That’s just it. Stuff just doesn’t last, eh?

Equally befitting is this flyer from the first show. The one we didn’t play because a picnic table full of people collapsed on Christiana’s (singer) leg.  The night was spent in two different hospitals instead of a show.   I think Shanty Town has gotten new tables since then.

So yes, ending won over unending, and that’s that.

Regardless, we recorded some songs with Tom Essex of Skinny Records fame.  Here they are, in – actually – a particular order.  More or less the order we wrote them.  Enjoy.

The last song, Legal Drugs, was one we never played out. Erik is singing.

You can also check out the band webpage here. Some more videos, pictures, and some one microphone recordings.

DTR-005 Fiya "Room For One More" 7"

This is the fifth record I put out, sort of…  The 3rd was a CDR compilation of  Dead Tank releases and friends bands, the 4th was going to be a Kite Flying Discography –  that was taking too long and Init Records wanted to do it more, and yes – OK.   This was the fifth.

At the time I had only known Fiya through the “s/t” 7″ they released with Travis Fristoe’s Obscurist Press.  I loved that 7″.   I always had copies of it in my distro aas well as the CDR version the band made.   Somewhere in all that nonsense I saw them play a few times – probably constantly heckling  “I want to release your next record” over and over.

And so it happened.  And at the time, I knew the record was great.  But seriously –  every time I listen to it it gets better.   I even included some lyrics from the last song “Room For One More.”

About 80 of the records had these silk screened covers, the rest were printed at Imprint.

Room For One More

What now? We’ve got our back catalogues. We’ve got our frames of reference. We’ve got our identities. Yeah, and we’ve got mounting debts, and we’ve got alcohol shakes, and we’ve got fading hopes, and we’ve growing guilt, and history to threaten us, privilege to fall back on, vivid fear to run from, less and less time to spare. And who among us didn’t believe that she could defy her circumstances, that he could surpass his destiny, that we could create our destiny?   But we talk like fucking asholes now. Our lives warn against hope. Our words punish hope. We act like fucking assholes now, prescribe failure and compromise, predict defeat and repetition and humiliation.

Download it here –

DTR-002 Darius Axis 7"

The second record I released. For fans of Evergreen and Braid – with some Gainesville quirkiness just for fun.  I love this record and loved seeing these guys play live.   The newer stuff they recorded made it to a cdr.  I’ll find that and eventually put it up as well.

Download it here –

DTR-001 The South “Chomp Chomp Chomp” LP

So I’m thinking posting up random records I love would be a good thing.  I recently got some fancy Tascam USB recorder that also handles phono inputs. So here we go.

Here’s the first record I ever released, The South “Chomp Chomp Chomp” LP on Dead Tank Records.  A link to download the whole album is at the bottom of this post.

I pressed 300 of them on black vinyl and was very new to the whole idea of pressing records.   I was very excited when this distributor in the UK wanted 20 of so copies of the LP. Here’s a review here wrote for his website

“I knew this record would be awesome from the moment I laid eyes upon it. Although I know you should never judge a record by it’s cover. This one is screened and messy and gave me an inkling of what to expect before I even slapped it onto the turntable. And I guess it’s appropriate that I ended up reviewing this LP on the same day that I reviewed the Pine album. These two bands have done more to renew my faith in hardcore than any other new bands in recent time. Both ooze the intangible qualities that make me swoon over a record like it was a 2 day old kitten. It’s tough to explain why certain LP’s make me want to bay to all and sundry who enjoy a certain style of music that they should check an album out. But the South are one of those bands that subconciously urge me to run around telling everyone who’ll listen to “check out the South! check out the South!”.

Chomp! is 8 tracks of pure fire and passion. It burns with a sincerity that so few bands evoke for me, they have the fury and they have the spirit. It’s not that common, but every now and again you get a politicized emo band, one which has something to say on a level other than the personal one. Yaphet Kotto is one of those bands. The South is another, they engender that rare feeling of awe in me, the feeling I got when hearing things like the first YK 7″ or the first Pine 7″ or a multitude of other records that most people are not particularly bothered about. And that’s fair play. Different records have different effects on folk, and that’s exactly the way it should be.

How many emo bands have song titles like “the Foundations of America Were Built on Religious Facism and Dinosaurs”? Heh. They’d probably hate me for calling them emo. But that’s the sound they have. Powerful screaming, guitars that hurtle along, wobbling precipitously on spider web thin melodies, before crashing into intense grooves that thunder along. They also can hit with a terrifying force, “Fire in the Hole” has moments where it is absolutely nitro fueled and brings the blitz with full effect, and just check out the rather peculiarly named “Crazy Dave Lied About His Shoes” which just plain detonates.

The record is liberally (hoho) sprinkled with some awesome samples from old time Americans and speeches, really adding to the whole political feel that the band eminates. That element makes me want to compare them to the aforementioned Yaphet Kotto. Musically that is a fair thing to say at times, though they are also decidedly different, and I won’t demean them by running off a list of other bands that play this kind of thing. The South are worth more than that. All that remains for me to say is: if you like the same records that I do, you MUST get this.”

Download the album here –

Some New Records, IFB Records Rule

Let me tell you, IFB Records is awesome.  Nevin Marshall is so quick and professional about getting records out.   Things are packed up well, mailed fast and friendly and the prices are killer.

Ft. Myers Florida is housing a real treat that you should  take advantage of next time you are ordering records.  They carry a lot of great hardcore / punk from other labels and of course Nevin has his own label that’s released tons of great records from Jiyuna, Merkit, Her Breath on Glass, Dead Friends, Carlisle, Roboteer, Hombrinus Dudes, and Resurrectionists and many more!  Upcoming releases include Drainland (I think that is Mark from Shikari’s new band?) and a 10″ from Panzram – that’s Joe and John from the band Merkit, and the former of Seven Inches to Freedom zine,  the latter of MRR and Your Day Will Come zine.

From the ‘philosophy’ part of the IFB website..

“We are a group of kids who believe strongly in the DIY ethic. DIY is not a stepping stone to get huge off of and then abandon – it has to be the centerpiece of our culture if we are to present any kind of meaningful alternative to the awful garbage of a culture we are currently mired in. We take pride in the music we release and we do all the design and packaging ourselves and are always trying to come up with creative looking stuff. We are opposed to this new trend in hardcore where labels and bands market themselves in a way that major labels do. You will not see barcodes on our releases, you will not see thick, glossy postcard advertisements or pictures of our bands dressed up with nice haircuts looking sexy. We are not out to make a sale. The music, the words, and the DIY spirit behind the whole thing are what’s important. We cannot let ourselves become a clone of the mainstream business world. We also cannot let the forces of capitalism coopt our culture and sell it back to us. Support DIY labels, bands, and projects. We encourage you to gag when you see a barcode on a hardcore record or when a label puts out ridiculous press kits with “selling points.” Please have fun and lead a meaningful, creative life.”

And Merkit is touring Europe soon! These guys are all super busy with great things and they are still sure to send your records fast and awesomely.

Anyway, here’s what I got.’ Red/Mihoen 10″
Seein’ Red/Catweazle 10″
I love Seein’ Red.  I love them more the longer they are around (over 20 years!), and they’ve been around forever.   Straightforward Dutch hardcore.   I saw them play at Trashfest in the Netherlands while on tour there and was totally impressed.  The drummer is amazing.  It’s insane to me that they are still doing the same kind of music for all these years.  The split with Mihoen is brand new and everything for that record is in Dutch.  And the Catweazle split is old, I just saw it on the list and never heard of it.

Resurrectionists – s/t LP
Wall of noise style German hardcore on the IFB label.  The last (and first) I heard of them was the split 7″ with Merkit.  The drumming is totally amazing. Two vocalists with the one low pitched and high pitched, while it’s classic, it doesn’t seem overused here. The songs are fast and pummeling with the exception of the Eyehategod cover at the end.  You know, which is just slower and pummeling. Brilliant stuff. Listen to them here.

[public.jpg]Iron Lung/Walls/Pig Heart Transplant LP
All 11 tracks on this LP were recorded while all 3 bands played together live at the Vera Project in Seattle.  Jon of Iron Lung also plays in Pig Heart Transplant, and Jensen (also of Iron Lung) plays in Walls…so you sort of get the picture here.  Last I heard copies of the LP are out of print. You can download the whole thing here if that’s your deal.  

Pollution – Nasty DNA LP

Dissonant hardcore ala Veriform Records.  The UK label Feast of Tentacles put this out.  The band is from Brooklyn NY, so I can’t help but think of Drunkdriver when listening.  With that reference in mind, I do hear the  occasional vocal effect – although the rhythm isn’t nearly as offbeat or jarring as Drunkdriver.   Also present is a tip of the hat to Die Kruezen and Rorschach’s mythical offspring.

logo Thou

And here’s the Thou stuff I got from the band. Still haven’t listened to much of it. From what I’ve heard so far, I really like the long song format, but them having many parts, not just slower and longer.  Pretty epic.

Thou “Tyrant” CD
Thou “Peasant C”D
Thou / Salome split 12″
Thou / Leech 12”
Thou “Baton Rouge, You Have Much to Answer For..” LP
Thou / Black September 7″

The discography page of the Thou website has links to almost everything they’ve recorded available for free download. Punk.  Check it out here.

Playing with new recording toys

I got some time to record some music over the last few days. Nothing insane here, just chill time in the garage with some beers.

Here are two Mp3s.
One from March 1st
and one from March 3rd

Learnin’, learnin’.

Music Download – Nog Watt

Released in 1985 on Revenge Records this amazingly intense all-female hardcore punk is from the Netherlands.   The music is harsh but not a far stray from just punk rockin’ out too.  A good mix of melody and noise.  Same with the vocals, they are really great and have the just right of aggressiveness.   Nog Watt is powerful as well as engaging, and the sort of band that walks the line of something fun and listenable, but also edgy and harsh – especially for 1985.

Download here.