Appalachian Death Ride/Geraldine split 7" (Anyway)
The first recording of A.D.R. since their all too brief song on the (Out of) Cowtown 3 comp. This is a very rocking teaser from their soon to be full length that will make the possums in the hills drink 'til they choke. Geraldine is a fine four piece band from Athens, Ohio, who are similar to the Meat Puppets if they were hung over and speeding at the same time. Both totally rock live. I think I drank eight beers during each of their sets the last time I saw them. - Anyway
Appalachian Death Ride "Firefly"/"Drowning" 7" (Anyway)
I drove to Florida to get out of Columbus and this single was MTV Radio's pick of the week. So I got to hear it and some tidbit about Columbus every day I was there. Yipee. It deserves the attention though. See if you can find the removed 'Columbia Masterworks' rip-off label. It's a real gem. - camster
Ass Pony's: Mr. Superlove CD/LP (Anyway/OKra)
Re-press of long out of print debut from these Cincinnati natives who are making waves with their new LP on A&M, Electric Rock Music . More rural than the newer stuff, Mr. Superlove was named by Ken Katkin (late of Safehouse and Homestead Records) as one of the ten greatest indie records of all time. - Anyway
Bargoyle "Happy Ending"/"Ignorance & Apathy" 7" (Anyway)
Their first seven inch. These unsightly punk rockers will twirl you around before making you crawl back to the bar. - Anyway
Shrill voiced acoustic guitarist/shrieker. There's occasionally some OK guitar, but the vocals ... Shhhrriiiiill! Her tape was recorded perty well from what I've heard; and she has some guest appearances from some of my favs, but still ... She's sings it best: "Gotta getaway, getaway" - Joel
Brainiac/Lazy "Dexatrim"/"Nothing" 7" (Simple Solutions)
Dayton's Brainiac keeps getting more and more mesmerizing as their song on this new split single testifies. What's their secret? I don't know, but perhaps the answer is in the song title. Whereas the first album, "Smack Bunny Baby," seems to lack some of the spunk of the live shows or even their first two singles, their second album, "Bonsai Superstar," is a knock- out - and this new vinyl totally explodes. Imagine all the virtues that made Brainiac so interesting in the first place: spastic, electronically distorted vocals on top of the rocket speed of the Pixies circa "Surfer Rosa" and the guitar skronk of Sonic Youth hot wired to the alien synth sounds of Pere Ubu at their punchiest. If they keep writing stuff this good, they may become as huge as their influences; my advice is to check them out while they're still small enough to fit into Stache's.
On the flip side, a look at the roster of Cincinnati's Lazy - one boy and two girls - and one might be expecting (forgive the term) a stereotypical riot grrl band. However, the group is mostly fronted by the guitar playing and singing of the lone boy, Steve Schmoll (formerly of the Tigerlilies), and their sound is indicative of a catchier punk sensibility (albeit a bumpy and coagulated one) than we've come to expect from the most famous examples of the recent wave of female dominant punk. Vocally speaking, Steve Schmoll's rants - I think something to the effect of "Goddamn your beautiful everything!" - seem to cross the gender gap in both style and content while musically speaking, the speedy, rhythmic twists and turns remind me of Bratmobile with a better singer or new wave with more grit and spit and no keyboards. So good you'll want to buy their album on Roadrunner records. - Nathan Weaver
Bugman "I Stand Accused"/Clay "Ann O'Malley" 7" (Anyway)
The Bugman cut, "I Stand Accused," brings to mind the melodic punk of Fluid. (I'm hoping a little flattery will get me a turntable that doesn't think 45 rpm means 33 to 45 rpm.) The Clay track, "Ann O'Malley" (anomaly), is garage pop with a twist. I just wish I could understand more of the words ... - Joel/The Independent 8/93
Bugman "I Stand Accused"/Clay "Ann O'Malley" 7" (Anyway)
Both are now broken up. Clay were a highly regarded Columbus live band while Bugman played straight ahead late seventies punk rock. - Anyway
Burnt Blasts of Sienna: 7" (Burnt Sienna Records)
Burnt Sienna ... (is still) putting the finishing touches on a new EP featuring tracks by Clay, Bugman, Pretty Mighty Mighty (from Athens) and, of course, Pet UFO. Pretty Mighty Mighty's cut is the strongest, with their "female Michael Stipe" vocal sound backed by something much heavier and more creative than any recent REM. The Bugman tune is in the straight ahead Ramones (ram*ones ) vein. Pet UFO is sort of a compromise between these two tracks - driving punk with searing female vocals. And then there's Clay's screaming B-52's sound ... Can you tell these bands are having fun!? - Joel/The Independent 5/93
So after I got my own copy of the 7" (my previous review was done from a 3:00 AM Bugman demo tape listening), I had to apologize to Bugman. Their cut on Burnt Blast is more of a time changing hardcore, almost Rollins/Black Flagish tune. They did/do some Ramones/70's punk stuff too though. - Joel
Corporate Groupings : 7" (Burnt Sienna Records)
Burnt Sienna is back again with another 4 song sampler. This time those local veterans Girly Machine start the record off with the heavy anthemic groove of "Final Kiss." As I've come to expect from these guys, it's a great song and recording. Why does "Wastin'" by Vibralux remind me of Question Mark and the Mysterians' "96 Tears?" It must be that cheesy organ sound and the basic 1-3-4-5 progression so obvious in doo-wop, soul and early rock-n-roll. If your looking for an angry grrl punk sound, Bloody Discharge fills the bill with "Penis Envy." I don't think these womyn are too happy with Freud or their jobs. Chanel No. 5's "Armchair Private Eye" closes the 7 incher with a 3 minute garage pop diary of a couch potato. - Joel/The Independent 11/93
Creeper: The Cassette
This was a wonderful little gift. It really displays how much one talented guy can do all by himself. It's the feel good tape of 1994. Check out the cover of "Hits from the Bong." - camster
Detour 6 song 7" (Anyway)
Very good debut 7" from this young Cincinnati band. Not to dissimilar to Moviola, this six-songer brushes you with very mellow 4-track pop good enough to eat cereal to ... - Anyway
It's Iron Butterfly's 40 minute version of the noise breaks of "Dazed and Confused" and "Whole Lotta Love" with short bongo solos, kids. - Joel
Earwig "Dinosaur Song"/"Wounded Knee (live)" 7" (Lizard Family)
I can remember my roo mmate walking in and asking who this was the first time I played it. He was surprised it was a Columbus band. "Dinosaur Song" is an angry little love song that might sound silly on paper, but is unforgettable for its melody and passion. As a bonus, the cover has a picture of Lizard in a dress. - camster
Earwig: Mayfeeder CD (Lizard Family)
These Columbus supercitizens really deliver the goods on this 11 song offer ing - covered in melodic fuzz and served with a large glass of PUNCH. - LFM
Tim Easton: Goody Boy CS (Podulka)
So this small label guy, Podulka, saw Tim buskin' on a street in Prague, took Tim to his home studio and recorded this tape ... so the story goes as I remember it ... Live, I've always preferred Tim (with or without the Kosher Spears) over his "rock" band, the Haynes Boys. While the same is roughly true of the recorded material, the Haynes Boys one up this tape in sound production. Still it's some nice authentic sounding old time blues, country and American folk with a certain good time lazing on a Sunday afternoon Simon and Garfunkel feeling. - Joel
The Evolution Control Committee: Gunderphonic CS (ECC)
Packaging is the first word that comes to mind when I think of the ECC's releases. Witness the black binder, complete with research notes, that accompanied Compact Disctructions . Or the pseudo Lazarus bag sealed with a pseudo-receipt. This little wonder comes along in a revamped 8-track case. If it were a movie, it would be along the lines of the found footage genre. Sound bites stolen from various quarter albums and mixed together, savage editing of Parsdent Bush babble, and an example of a compact disctruction performed on none other than Led Zeppelin. You have to have a sense of humor to really appreciate this, but I don't think anyone should miss out on Chuck D rapping over Herb Alpert. It could be the invention of performance audio. - camster
Feversmile: Feversmile EP (World Record/Worm)
Probably the best recorded and most accessible local release out of Columbus in the last so many years. From nearby friends to yahoos in Sweden, anyone I've played this for has enjoyed it. And since the band has moved on to other lesser things, this may be the pinnacle of Mid-Western rock in our time. Good luck trying to find it though. - camster
Ohio garage pop So Jake and Chris Q. of Clay got this other band together with drummer Bim. I knew Jake admired Greenhorn's work, so I ain't too surprised this new band tends to lean toward basic Midwestern open-chorded songs (in the key of G or C). My big complaint is that Jake had such a unique schitzo, choppy, clinky, ringy sound with Clay. Now he spends a lot of time away from that. At least he and Chris are keepin up the vocal urgency and zaniness. - Joel
Flyin' Saucers 7" EP (Burnt Sienna)
With the exception of the vocals on "Teddy Bear," this is a pretty good recording. The vocal noise and almost unrecognizable lyrics and melody of "TB" make me wonder if Jerry Wick mixed this one. I think they were trying to go for a different and garagier sound ... and it almost works. Still, there are some perty entertainin' rockabilly/50's/surf romps here. - Joel
For Your Ears Only : CD (Eardrop Productions)
... For Your Ears Only ... contains 20 songs by bands known to the Columbus music scene. Some of you may remember or even own a similar Datapanik CD compilation from a couple years ago. But don't expect the same limited variety of garage punk and makeshift portable studio production quality on Eardrop as found on Datapanik. Although the focus still seems to be guitar heavy, the styles covered are much wider. As far as the sound quality, many of the tracks are extremely professional and even (gasp!) polished ...
The first track is by a rather new local band Earwig (no, not the Earwig from England). I've said it before and I'll say it again. There's some thoughtful songwriting going on here. The epic (OK, maybe it's a little too long) "Tribute" is melodic garage pop with an angry edge similar to that of Matthew Sweet. Live, Earwig is a little loose musically, but the powerful songwriting still shines through.
Gaunt follows with the obligatory false start on "Down." This is another piece of melodic garage pop, shorter and noisier than Earwig's cut. On stage, these guys (OK, Jerry "Jerky" Wick) usually demean the band and the audience at the same time with their off-hand commentaries and angry stage antics.
Stupid Fuckin' Hippie is the first entry in what I might call twisted psychopunk. The late sixties acid rock influence of "Garden" is clear in the riffs with transitions that keep the listeners on their toes. The vocals are Jim Morrisonesque with spoken baritone verses and falsetto range choruses. A few of their songs catch my attention live, but most seem to drag. Also, the bass player has recently taken over the front mouth posi tion and isn't completely confident with his new dual role in the band. However, the lyrics have become more discernible and less psychedelic.
The first highly polished track comes from bass slappers Ishkabibble. The bass and percussion lay down the structure to "Jimmy Jet and his T.V. Set" while the guitar adds some very effective sustained tones, minimalistic rhythms and a few funky jazz chords. This is a great tune, unfortunately after two or three songs from their live set, the bass popping and funk riffs get old.
To the best of my recollection, the devilishly delivered lyrics of "Green Eggs and Ham" are indeed the work of the one and only Dr. Suess. And what else would one call a fun food oriented hardcore band but Devil Cake? This cut represents their live sound fairly well, just picture two tall thin horned men up front (one sax player, one Lucifer).
Enivob Nez (read it backwards) used to venture into very experimental noise jazz, but "New Kind of Hero" sticks much closer to traditional rock song structures and melodies, as much of their new material does. I think they pulled off the experimental tunes better.
Sticking to a more avant jazz sound, Plastic Factory creates a slightly pretentious yet searching and eerie remembrance in "The Day Miles Davis Died." Live, it becomes obvious that this is a trio of seasoned musicians. And the occasional guest horn players provide the melodies that are often missing from their ambitious offerings.
The sweet early 80's female vocal pop of Vibralux's "Gem" is a change of pace. Unfortunately the lyricist/vocalist and synthesizer seem to be stuck in high school in the early 80's too. Influences such as the Go Gos, Nina, Neil Young, and Procol Harem are evident live. Gut Piston brings us back to the basic punk that many say is what rock and roll was meant to be - growling vocals with a strong steady beat and distorted guitars. "No Way Out" and their other tunes bring to mind Social Distortion and maybe early Billy Idol/Generation X.
The twisted schizophrenic "Fossil" by Clay has the urgency of a band on the edge. And the galloping break is the perfect reprise. On stage these screaming instrument trading youth get even crazier ... ever seen the hairy butt of a nude bassist on the Forth of July?
The Econothugs' heavy hardcore "Epidemic" is one of the rawest pieces on this collection. A little more production might have helped with the low grinding guitar parts. With a new vocalist, these guys are working on new songs that have become a little less beer oriented. They've also started sharing vocal duties more often!
Known more for their groove oriented punk, Pica Huss' "Genocide USA" is one of their more straight-forward rock and roll tunes. In the live arena, these guys leave the audience - loyal Hussies and Pica virgins - dancing in each others sweat.
Another high production quality tune follows, but Eric's Mother is far from pretty, sweet or nice. This is by no means the group to take your Mother or your new mate too - unless you want them to think you want to kill them! "Electrocuted Elephant" sounds like a cross between early Black Sabbath and Butthole Surfers doing the soundtrack the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The onstage image is pretty scary too. Fire breathing, demonic stares and the occasional seemingly structureless instrumental acid trips are sure to make unprepared listeners uneasy.
Ouchcube claims the slickest production and great musicianship on the CD with "Blood Between Us." The sharp staccato guitar leaves plenty of space for the vocal verses and the chorus, appropriately enough, flows more rhythmically and melodically. Expect more of the same Metallica influence live.
G-Spot Tornados follow with a garage pop piece that I can't help but compare to April Wine's "Sign of the Gypsy Queen." It may only be there for a few seconds, but once it is, I can't get it out of my head. The vocals on "Backstab" are reminiscent of Jim Morrison, including getting sick at the end of each verse. These guys have better, less vocally distracting tunes than this, so don't let this turn you off completely.
The intro/chorus sections of The Method's "No Wrong Track" has a heavy pop funk feel with some great guitar harmonies. The verses turn to more thrash metal stylings with strained vocals. Live, these guys are much heavier and can rock and groove with the best of them.
Throat's "Pin the Fix (on the Junkie)" ... imagine the Red Hot Chili Pep pers covering "American Woman." Live, imagine the Red Hot Chili Peppers covering "American Woman" again. It's great for two or three songs, but then I just get bored.
Many have claimed that the New Bomb Turks are just a rock and roll band, including the Turks themselves. With the slowed down & turned down "Cryin' in the Beer of A Drunk Man" the basic rock slant of the Rolling Stones and early AC/DC is undeniable. But live the Turks crank up the speed and the volume to such an extent that our ears are fooled into calling it punk.
Belreve may lay claim to the loudest recording level and noisiest recording on the CD with "Shut Up." The loudness isn't really something they controlled and the noise is sometimes what they strive for within this vein of My Bloody Valentine meets Teenage Fan Club ethereal noise. Live, the musicianship is a little uncomfortable at times, but that just adds to the sound. Besides, they keep getting better and better.
Commonly agreed upon as the loudest band in town, Greenhorn offers a sweet and thoughtful Midwest country tone to close the CD. Though they generally claim Neil Young as one of the major influences of their sound, "Leadhead" definitely has something in common with REO SpeedwagonÍs "Time for Me to Fly" (Another victim of Columbus radio in the 70's ... 80's and 90's). But the transition to a rumbling bass and guitar jam at the end has a great redeeming value. - Joel/The Independent 7/93 BANDS & RELEASES (part 2)
Gaunt "Turn to Ash"/"Flying" 7" (Potential Ashtray)
Jerry Wick is a good person to argue/debate with in many matters musical. Still his obsession with low fidelity/no production can be just that - an obsession. I mean, ya gotta have some production, or ya don't here anything. (Actually I'm stuck in a paradox here: What is the result of the complete lack of production - silence or noise?) I've heard stories of Gaunt taking perty decent recordings and adding noise/distortion to 'em just to get the lo-fi effect. (Don't sound to authentic too me). And sometimes it seems a bit pretentious or elitist. Well, "Flying" carries the lo-fi thing a bit too far. But "Turn to Ash" is a pretty good sample of why I've always like Gaunt more than the Turks - just some basic loser guy punk pop songs played out by some guys who ain't quite losers - they just still seem to find a twisted sense of anger and joy in playing the part. - Joel
Girly Machine "65 Seconds," "Swamp Monster"/"Atmosfear" 7" (Datapanik)
Girly Machine has a complete CD out on Burnt Sienna, but I'll stick to the 3 song single GM just released on Datapanik. First is the bombastic mini- anthem, "65 Seconds." Okay, so it comes in at about 58 seconds, it's still a great tune. "Swamp Monster" recalls the quick shuffling rock and rolling rhythm Van Halen was famous for (not exactly popular for, though) in the early days. "Atmosfear" slows things down a bit, creating a more ominous tone, with the guitar tracing out the background. If I had more time, I'd rave about the CD too. - Joel/The Independent 4/94
Greek Week Singoff, 1967: Live from Mershon Auditorium (Coronet Records)
A classic. A must have (as is everything from my favorite label in town). I'm not kidding, either. I'll play it for you sometime if ya want. - camster
Greenhorn "Through the Thick of It"/"Chastity" 7" (Anyway)
I've gotta be careful here - make one accurate but not necessarily flatter ing comparison and you and the band never live it down. I know Neil Young is a safe comparison here (I think more people in Ohio than anywhere else know how to play Euchre and are influenced by Mr. Young). Just add a slightly fuller nasal southern accent to the vocals and a few more synco pated rhythms than Neil is generally known for and you've got "Through the Thick of It." "Chastity" brings to mind the heavy parts of that "Sign Sign, Everywhere a Sign" song, while maintaining the Young connection. Both tunes end with larger-than-life power guitar solos, rumbling bass and drums on the brink of destruction. - Joel/The Independent 4/94
The Hairy Patt Band: The Brown Sounds of ... 7" (Chrome Frog)
Although I wasn't around in the 50's, I'm told roots rock (a genre originally known as rock 'n' roll) used to seem like really kinky, scary stuff. Appropriately coming to you on brown vinyl, Hairy Patt recaptures that tone. Following in the footsteps of the stripped down scum rock of Pussy Galore, they don't bother with a bass player. Where PG depended on three guitar players to make its racket, Hairy is just two guys - a guitar player and a drummer. Yet, as anyone who has seen them live can testify, they're capable of making a bigger noise than most bands three times their size, and they pull enough surprises to make you wonder how Jon Spencer's music has managed to get so predictable these days despite the extra guitar at his disposal. For those who are already familiar with the band, I'm happy to report that gone is the fancy production that detracted from their otherwise fine album on Choke, Buford's Last Pusser . Instead we get the LOUD, driving power of their best live shows, grit intact. Jason's gruff, dirty old man vocals sound stronger than ever, delivering the timeless white trash wisdom of "Brown" on the A side ("What you gonna wear when you go downtown?/You can't go wrong with brown") and the redneck horror of "Howard's Motel" on the other side. - Nathan Weaver
The Hairy Patt Band "I'm so Angry Your're Gonna Die," "Richard Ramirez"/
"Buford's Last Pusser," "The Legend of Soggy Creek," "Cruising" 7" (Belly-Fu
Oh Happy Whale/Crome Frog)
If bands were movies, the Hairy Patt Band would be rated NC-17 folk. The primary instrumentation is acoustic guitar that ranges from a twangy buzz to full Crazy Horse distortion, percussion that ranges from gospel hoedown hand claps to metallic clankers and vocals that range from a raspy Arlo Guthrie to a nasty Tom Waits. Their new 5 song 7" on the new local label Belly FU oh Happy Whale has received many great reviews locally. To those of you who like this rough recording, all I can say is go see them live - it only gets better ... Or should I say scarier? - Joel/The Independent 11/93
Haynes Boys "Last Heathen"/"Happy" 7" (Whatever Records)
This one was given free at one of their better shows last summer. It was what prompted me to decide the Haynes Boys are my new favorite Columbus band. The musicianship on "Last Heathen" is stunning, bouncy, totally danceable in that trademark twangy sort of way. "Happy" on side 2 sounds better live, but once again, the music is crystal! The vocals sound muddy, like on an old country and western record. The best part of this music is that the rhythm is so right on! How so many can sit still and stare straight ahead when out at a club where these Boys are playing is beyond me! - Amanda
Haynes Boys "Maryhaven Family"/"Out Of This World" 7" (Whatever Records)
OK, first of all I thought bands tended to speed songs up over time, NOT slow them down! I've seen "M. Family" live at least 4 times, and have heard it on that tape (Pre-Game Dump) where it sounded faster and more rhythmic than on this offering. Not to be a stickler or anything, but the vocals could sound better as well. The song itself is a true classic, however. "Out Of This World" has weird-sounding vocals, too. But the slide-y guitars never fail to take me elsewhere (from mundane reality). Both of these songs are also on the tape I mentioned previously, and both sound better there as far as I'm concerned. I think "Out.." is the song I noticed has the same bass line as Steve Miller's "The Joker" hahahaha! You shouldn't be at home listening to records anyway - go see this band live and start DANCING for chrissakes! From what I've witnessed, the Haynes Boys want and need your support. I swear, the people in Columbus are too shy at live shows! - Amanda
Log "Idiot Proof," "She's the One"/"Near Enough," "One World" 7" (Anyway)
I'd guess Log listened to Jefferson Airplane, the Mama's and the Papa's or even the Association at some point - just add a little garage distortion. There are some nice backing vocals and pop melodies. Unfortunately, each verse tends to consist of two evenly alternating chords, while the choruses may contain three, maybe even four chords! The basic rhythm of the every tune is pretty much the same too ........... Oh, sorry, I must have dozed off ... "One World" does up the tempo a bit. - Joel/The Independent 4/94
Log "Idiot Proof," "She's the One"/"Near Enough," "One World" 7" (Anyway)
Their first of totally catchy indie-pop. - Anyway
Log: Light Fuse and Get Away CD (Anyway)
Paul Nini and company pack a nice little Kiwi punch on this, their first full length. Containing nine originals and a cover of the Bird Nest Roys "Who is the Silliest Rossi?," they skim over New Zealand jangle pop and settle quite nicely into their own sweet hummable tunes. - Anyway
Ya got some Nirvana. - Joel
Lucwarm: Riffts 7" EP (self-released)
7's are more or less demos anymore, which sucks since I run a label that puts out a lot of 7"s. This one is put together nicely. Nice package, nice label. 4 songs. On the flip side there is a tune called "35 seconds;" it's good. The other three tracks are proven and safe mixtures of Black Sabbath, Cal pop punk, Seattle grunge, and the historical Nirvana. You make the call. I have got copy number 106 of 300 on gray marble vinyl. - Tony Painter
Moody Jackson: Fric System 7" comp. EP (Burnt Sienna)
Moody Jackson/My White Bread Mom 7" split EP (Burnt Sienna) A punk rock band from Columbus, Ohio. We've been together since about April of 1993(I think). We played our first show (unfortunately, or not) at Freak'n' Pizza, which is closed now. We have some songs out on two Burnt Sienna 7". First was the Fric System compilation released in May of 1994. It features one song from the Econothugs, My White Bread Mom, Granny's Hole, and of course us. Next was the split seven inch featuring My White Bread Mom on one side, and us on the other. We were very proud to be able to cram 4 songs on one side. We were sure other people missed the days when 7" had 8 songs on them, so we did our best. The songs we did on this split were "Postman," "Yesterday," "Lunatics," and "Martina" (a cover originally called "Life Number 9" by Martina McBride). - Kevin
Moody Jackson/My White Bread Mom 7" EP (Burnt Sienna)
Some screamin' spit fast punk. I'm thinking ... if these were slowed down, cleaned up and made more intelligible, they'd almost be Dr. Demento material. Humor, novelty and self-mockery seem to be big traits of both these otherwise early teenage punk/hardcore sounding bands. - Joel
Moviola: Frantic 10" EP (Anyway)
These guys get better and better. Now a four piece, Jake Housch's writing climbs the walls of hangover love and puts you in that morning cup of coffee when the night before still knocks at your eyebrows. You'll play this so much you'll wish it would have been a 12"LP so it could be four songs longer. - Anyway
Moviola "Waste"/"Gin & Tonic" 7" (MindWalk Music/Eardrop/Anyway)
This is an early Moviola 7". "Waste" was one of my favorite Moviola tunes live - I don't think they do it anymore. With lyrics like "Your friend's a stupid fuck./What a waste of time./I got more to do than to hang around this." one might expect an all out punk thing. Instead ya get something not so much slanted and enchanted, but more wavering and uneasy. That's a good thing here. And one can't help but think you've been that friend. "Gin & Tonic" continues the somewhat anti-social theme in a similar manner, with little up-beat "Beck's Bolero" type breaks - well, if Jeff Beck were an angry frustrated melancholy man. The recording itself has a bad needle on a phonograph type of static or upper midrange buzz to it. Ya know, the Columbus sound, lo-fi, cringe, etc. - Joel
New Bomb Turks: Live on VPRO Radio Holland 12" (Anyway)
Featuring their "hit" "Girl Can Help It" plus four other very rock numbers. We (Anyway) will only have a few hundred available, Matador will have the rest. - Anyway
Our Flesh Party: Gadfly CD (You Snooze You Looze)
Big sound. Heavy pop riffs. Scratchy strained vocals. A more pop oriented Dramarama - or even less interesting Jane's Addiction - with maybe a bit of Bono's over-emoting and Jim Steinman's view of production in the heavy alternative category. It's a powerful sound, but does everything have to seem so important all the time? Then there's the 12 minute avant/incidental sound piece ending the CD. It's interesting, but I can't get past the feeling that it's just filler. - Joel
Pounce Intl. various (various)
Pounce is dancy to ambient to aggressive electronic music. Pounce appears on seven different currently available compilation CDs, and a full length release is coming out on Furnace Records this fall. Pounce has an updated web page address below. Some shows are being planned for the future, al- though Pounce has concentrated on studio work recently. Look for Pounquad CD called There is No Time (Ras Dva Records) and Exposed II: Spreading the Disease (Sin Klub Entertainment). PO Box 164171 Columbus Ohio 43216-4171 USA Pounce: http://www.iac.net/~dscott/pounce.html Furnace: http://www.cybercom.com/~bsamedi/furnace.html - Paul W. Campbell (of Pounce Intl.)
Pretty Mighty Mighty: "Nevertheless"/"Flower Song" 7" (Burnt Sienna)
"Nevertheless" is reminiscent of Its a Beautiful Day meshed with My Bloody Valentine. If REM were a happy art rock group (it could happen) that featured heavy, even grungy, violin solo breaks it might sound a lot like "Flower Song." Both PMM tunes are great and the recording quality is decent. - Joel/The Independent 11/93
Pretty Mighty Mighty: Ugly CD (Burnt Sienna)
Every time I've written about this band, someone seems to disagree/dislike what I've said. Yet, I really do like the band. Most compare 'em to the Dambuilders. Guess I should get some, eh? I compared 'em to a progressive art rock version of REM or the ethereal noise of My Bloody Valentine. The male-female vocals bring that certain REM folksiness (Did I here the Mamas & the Papas in there?). The pretty then noisy, almost grungy guitar and violin bring in the MBV - especially the Hendrix noise at the end of the title track. The progressive art rock comes from the bass sound and the ambitious song structures and changes - and there are some great ones. Kinda reminds me of the first few Yes albums (ones ya don't here on the classic rock stations.) - minus the wimpy cheerleader tendencies of John Anderson. And yes, Yes is the new comparison I'm sure someone will dislike. - Joel
Alternative pop So I guess the name is kinda fitting. Lots-o-covers of the more popular alternative ho-hum of 101. - Joel
Sound of Poverty: Anyway Singles '92-'93 (Get Hip/Anyway)
Compilation of first 7 Anyway singles, all of which have been out of print. Features all exclusive tracks from the likes of New Bomb Turks, Gaunt, Bassholes, Appalachian Death Ride and other Ohio stars. Get Hip put it out because we're poor, and kinda dumb. - Anyway
Stupid Fuckin' Hippie "River"/"Meadow" (MindWalk Music/Eardrop)
Maybe it's just because of the title, but these tunes kinda remind me of Joe Walsh's "Meadows" - 'ceptin' I kinda like Joe's thing. Then they kinda swing into 70's hard rock territory with buried acid rock vocals and breaks. If I didn't know better, I'd think they were doin' the beginning of "Iron Man" (IIII aaammmm I-ron Man) in "River." The vocals on "Meadow" are a bit off and out there. The sound's better than most lo-fi though. - Joel
Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments: "Punk Rock Secret"/"Talkin' 'bout Mice
Generation"/"Miami Rap" (Bag of Hammers);
Negative Guest List 7" EP (Siltbreeze)
Turns out in matters punk, age is sometimes a virtue. Or is it just that TJSA singer, Ron House - who's possibly old enough to be my dad's little brother - has the mental age of fifteen? All I know for sure is that this is one of the few punk rock bands in Columbus whose knowledge of said genre seems to go back farther than 1982, that critical point when the term "punk" became synonymous with hardcore and most of the bands came off like a bunch of rule obsessed (but inept) musicians trying to ape speed metal. In contrast, Mr. House sounds like he survived his adolescence on 70's proto punk, especially Cleveland's Electric Eels, whose song "Cyclotron" I've seen them include in their live set. In fact, House's, uh, eccentric vocal delivery veers back and forth between the should've-been-patented whine of lead Eel Dave E (imagine Superchunk's Mac McLaughlin on helium) and Iggy Stooge like hollering. But where the Eels were attempting to terrorize their audience with their agitated guitar sounds and no bass set up, TJSA actually has a bass player and guitarist Bob Petric isn't afraid to play big dumb rock riffs like the rock stars they ought to be. Besides, the Eels never wrote anything as "sensitive" as "Fire in the Swimming Girl" and "Baboon's Liver." - Nathan Weaver
Ugly Stick: Absinthe CD (Bluehouse/Lizard Family)
(This) 17 track CD borrows a lot from the likes of Van Morrison and Them, BookerO T and the MG's, the Waterboys and traditional country - a tasty combo of country, Celtic and R&B (just to confuse Mr. John Petric). But these guys are also aware of the heavier sides of music, at least enough not to take garage, punk and grunge too seriously. - Joel/The Independent 11/93
Ugly Stick: Absinthe CD (Lizard Family/Bluehouse)
From deep in the heart of Delaware, OH, these four pretty punks have become one of the most varied and consistently excellent songwriting teams in the fucking universe. This 17 song disc of Crampified country punk lets you in on exactly how it is to grow up in Ohio. You will like this very much. - LFM
Ugly Stick "Dine Under Birds" "Neighbor's Neighborhood" "Please Give Me
Something" 7" (Lizard Family)
Seven inches of the most disturbingly driven cow-punk that you will ever lay your needle on.... garunfuckinteed! - LFM
Garage punk/noise/guitar experiment So V3 leader Jim Sheppard saw a copy of CRINGE at ComFest and passed on a message that he wanted me to review V3. Sure, I usually take requests, but V3 only plays about twice a year it seems. In 4 years I think I've seen 'em 3 times. Each time was different enough that I still can't decide. Is he the near genius many claim or just an old guy reliving punk with a varying backing band of questionable musicianship? Some consistency in members and live sound would help me to decide. For now, I think it's far overrated guitar noise and pretentious vocal slop. Ok, there are enough glimmers here and there that I'm still willing to listen fer more. - Joel
Hard playing veterans of the Columbus music scene, Vinyl mixes funky guitar riffs with flowing bass lines and tight percussion. Former Zero One members Jeff Ciampa and Kevin Oliver team with Anthony Gayle McClung and Jim Ed Cobbs to form one tight quartet. - from http://www.infinet.com/~jrh
Generally aggressive alternative funk stuff I kinda thought of Tool with some funkier bits. Kinda annoys me after a bit. There's seems to be a lot of testosterone in the band/crowd too. I guess this is a step up from their cover days. - Joel
Wilfoster + Q: Spaceborn: Death Was Their Pilot, Fear Their Fuel CS
This release from two of the four jokers who formed half of the late, great Clay is so DIY it makes your average bootleg look slick. I'd be surprised if there were more than twenty-five copies circulating between Columbus and Athens. I got mine for a dollar from the two kids who run the Botulism label (completely out of their Ohio University dorm room, I'd have to guess.) Recorded on one of those bargain basement brand cassettes that tend to self destruct after one play, the "liner notes" are hand-written, and the cover art looks like it came out of a run-down Xerox machine. Appropriately, the music is just as trashy. Enlisting the help of drummer Joe Patt (of the Hairy Patt Band), horn blower Stu Sinn (Hard Black Thing), and saxophonist Joe Thompson (Bumble Flea), the fellows create scummy noise rock that sounds like it is informed by the soundtracks of grade B 1950's detective movies, spaghetti Westerns, and surf flicks. This is "no wave" that's dropped the arty pessimism in favor of a kind of aural slapstick. Without really copying anybody else, they sound like they've managed to synthesize much from the contemporary rock cannon. Like a lot of people these days, you can tell they're Pussy Galore fans because they don't use a bass player and they like to mix campy humor with screechy feedback and drone. They also favor "Peter Gunn" like riffs that The Birthday Party would have liked, and they sound as lackadaisical as early Royal Trux, as lo-fi and wigged out as the Grifters, and their sense of song structure is as shaky as early Pavement. It's sort of like they took Thurston Moore's boast that "Daydream Nation" wouldn't have "any songs on it ... But it will blow your mind" as some kind of dare. They don't even bother to list any song titles. What good are titles when the whole thing sounds like tape recorder was only turned on for the good parts? These mostly instrumental songs don't really stop or start as much as one musical theme gets hijacked by another. Breaking into and out of the music throughout are hilariously surreal soundbites (Tom Jones records, talk radio, self-help tapes, job training videos, books on tape, etc). It's dopey, nerdy fun and just as wild as seeing their silliness live. If you write the slackers at Botulism, maybe they can make you a copy (assuming they didn't accidentally give away the master). - Nathan Weaver
Wishyfish: First Wishes CS (self-released)
Before Mary Adam 12, John (drums), Michelle (vocals) and Jeff (bass) were in this band with Fripp guitar scholar Brian Lucey (Nude). They have a kinda searching Edie Brickell mood with some of that art rock noise and dissonance added in for good measure. Too ambitious and arty to be hippie, but those elements are there. A slight muddiness detracts from the vocals a bit, but it's still one of the tapes I play most. - Joel