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Emma Goldman – Self-Titled EP [Review]



Artist: Emma Goldman

Title: Emma Goldman

Release: Tape / Digital

Year: 2018

Label: Self-Released

I find it kinda weird that I have to write about a band called Emma Goldman. Okay, I know at least four different bands called Rosa Parks, but still… do we really need that? There are already too many bands named after famous people. Red Emma or The Anarchist Ice Cream Parlour could have been at least a bit more original names for a screamo band, I guess.

Anyway, this Emma Goldman is a three-piece screamo outfit from Vancouver, BC. Their demo, or self-titled EP if you like to call it that way, consists of four tracks that sound like something that I would have listened to with interest in my teenage years. They are nailing the 90’s emotive style quite well. It’s all right there—perplexed and anguished vocals, over the top personal/political poetry, and twinkly guitars that dangle right on the edge of real screamo. The melodies range from the climatic emo of Indian Summer to the noisier and chaotic sound of Honeywell. Add to that some more complex Maximilian Colby or Drive Like Jehu influences, and you’ll have a darn enjoyable record. Two out of the three members of Emma Goldman, namely Félix and Victoria, also play in dad thighs, another nice band that deserves some attention.

I think, David Norman of Zegema Beach Records also enjoyed the band and their attitude, to the point that he has attended and filmed their whole set at the record’s release show on March 16th, hence the Youtube title that says May 16, lol.





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No Suits in Miami – EP/Plain Sight [Review]



Artist: No Suits in Miami

Title: EP/Plain Sight

Release: Tape / Digital

Year: 2018

Label: Dasein Records

There’s a basic formula to any band that doesn’t aspire to become the “next big thing” in whatever genre you’re gonna find yourself identified with. You shoot out some beats, riffs, screams and melodies, juggle with them a bit and put your heart into it. If you like what comes out in the end, you stick with it. When passion and self-expression is what drives you to make this particular kind of art, it doesn’t really matter how many people will actually get to it eventually.

So it’s no surprise there are so many brilliant bands known to just a handful of geeks that sacrifice most of their social life just to be up to date with what’s going on in the obscure music scenes they are emotionally and artistically attached to. Dripped in emotions and sincerity this foursome have popped up from Lund, Sweden. No Suits in Miami are on the softer side of the punk spectrum and that works on their advantage as it sets them apart compared to many other bands that I usually write about.

No Suits in Miami have been around for quite some time but the songs from their EP were only traceable online and appreciated by just the kind of geeks that I have portrayed earlier. One of them is Mads Leonard Jensen from Copenhagen’s based Dasein Records who is putting out their first physical release on a limited cassette tape. By limited, I mean 20 copies with a purple/glitter look!

In a span of around 20 minutes there are five tracks of beautiful shoegaze emo, drilling themselves into your memory. Four of them were previously recorded and available on Soundcloud as an unreleased EP, while the fifth song “Plain Sight” is a brand new for this release. The new song is pure awesomeness and I don’t want to argue about it!

I’m totally not that kid transitioning into dream-pop and shoegaze, so I don’t know what kind of bands to give as a point of reference here, but from my own personal musical journey I can relate to Dahlia Seed, Carissa’s Wierd, or Crash and Britany. I think it’s fair enough to find some hints of them into No Suits in Miami’s music. There are sighing, dreamy guitars accompanied by charming vocals that all ebb and flow in a perfectly lovely 90’s arty emo crate. There’s a strong sense of keeping things lo-fi but still clean-sounding and poignant. They might feel a bit over the top in its aesthetics but definitely not boring or overly melodramatic.

I would totally recommend this to all those introvert and self-centered people who have a soft spot for the kind of music described here. We don’t hear such bands very often and this record came out as a great surprise to me.



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Label feature: Tapetalks


Ukraine is a country that feels so close and so far in the same time. My first and only visit there so far happened last August. I spent a few days in the beautiful and calm capital city of Kiyv. While back then I was digging in what it was a part of the city and country’s experimental electronic music scene this article is actually dedicated to a topic closer to DIY Conspiracy – punk. At least to the outside observer, the country is blooming with (hardcore) punk bands (Reminded, Clearsight, Tank-2000, Bluesbreaker), shows and nice festivals like Маяк or Cobra Fest.

Cool Jerks – Patriots (2017)

For this feature we go to Odessa where Tapetalks is based. This comparative young label is focused on releasing limited cassette tapes. Curious enough the current Tapetalks roster is not formed of local bands (the city actually has an abundance of those with Homesick, Supression and Flame to name a few). Similar to Bulgaria’s Ugly and Proud Records, which operate almost exclusively on an international level, the focus of Tapetalks are bands from abroad. In their catalog you find bands from Australia, England, Germany and Russia. The releases look and sound fantastic, some are accompanied by extensive booklets and all feature great artwork. No compromises are made with the paper or the print quality. The runs are far from being super limited, but are just enough to make you go for the tapes as soon as they’re out.

EX-DOG – Angry & Hungry (2016)

Let’s take a quick look at their catalog before we send you on a shopping spree in the Tapetalks Bandcamp page.

Bikini Cops – Three (2018)

Coming out of Perth, Australia, Bikini Cops sound exactly as their name suggests – 1980s influenced punk, hating the world, hating the system, not afraid to draw their eyes from the ugly world to what hides in ourselves and try to find there the key for a better future. The release will take 10 minutes of your life, but then another 10 and another 10. Only if Perth wasn’t so damn far from here. That band is surely a blast live.

Cold Leather – Past Remedy (2017)

Released late last year we’re sure most zines were too busy writing end-of-the-year lists instead of going for something fresh, in this case, as fresh as 1980s US punk can get. Past Remedy is a groovy and dancable punk three-tracker with old school sound, reverby shouty but melodic vocals and naughty bass lines.

Cool Jerks – Patriots (2017) & Demo (2016)

Tapetalks have only six releases (a new one is coming as I write this) but England’s Cool Jerks can be already called regulars in the label as their 2016 demo was actually the first cassette that got published. Patriots follow what that demo had already started. Mid paced tracks taking turns with faster ones, lyrics and tracks about our shared daily struggles but performed and recorded so loyally to the past of punk music that you can’t stay neutral to it no matter how many bands of that era or contemporary worshippers have you heard.

Cool Jerks and their two releases are definitely future Tapetalks classics!

KÜKEN – KÜKEN (2016)

Germany’s KÜKEN and their self-titled album on Tapetalks is without a doubt my favorite of the current catalog of the label. From the awesome artwork to the introvert and personal raw punk breathing the air of the late 1970s there’s no track in this album that’s not a banger. While other releases sometimes might feel a bit short KÜKEN is as long as it should be, as emotionally charged as it should be but just enough nihilist. Excuse me, now I gotta polish my boots.

EX-DOG – Angry & Hungry (2016)

EX-DOG are the winners with the dopest artwork on Tapetalks. They’re hailing from Moscow, Russia and are melodic as hell. Emotional punk rock at its finest, definitely among the top releases at Tapetalks. Can’t believe it’s not sold out yet!



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Razgruha – Money Power Greed


Artist: Razgruha

Title: Money Power Greed

Release: Tape / Digital

Year: 2018

Label: Kontingent Records

Razgruha is a demolition squad from Bulgaria’s capital. They use an old school but still formidable grindcore formula of turning music into sound devastation, and they are all graduates in the art of ruination. Chances are, if you’re a member of a crust/hardcore/grind/anything-DIY punk band coming to Sofia, you might share the stage and equipment with these folks.

Air pollution, rampant nationalism, political extortion, economic policies that serve only the wealthy and corrupted elites—this is all everyday reality and lyrical topics in Razgruha’s 10 grinding ragers. Half the songs sung in Bulgarian, half in English. After many line-up changes throughout the years, their sound has really come together. I’m really glad about this.

Comparisons aside, this is straight up grindcore, no two ways about it. Ten pulverizing songs with the sheer intensity that only a truly DIY record could have. I mean, the band have recorded, mixed and mastered everything by themselves. Still a wall of sound. All in all this is a solid record.

The cassette tape that was released by the Bulgarian DIY label Kontingent Records was all sold out at its release show, actually a benefit gig for the local Food Not Bombs group where all the money from Razgruha’s merch was donated to support the cause.



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Razgruha – Money Power Greed


Artist: Razgruha

Title: Money Power Greed

Release: Tape / Digital

Year: 2018

Label: Kontingent Records

Razgruha is a demolition squad from Bulgaria’s capital. They use an old school but still formidable grindcore formula of turning music into sound devastation, and they are all graduates in the art of ruination. Chances are, if you’re a member of a crust/hardcore/grind/anything-DIY punk band coming to Sofia, you might share the stage and equipment with these folks.

Air pollution, rampant nationalism, political extortion, economic policies that serve only the wealthy and corrupted elites—this is all everyday reality and lyrical topics in Razgruha’s 10 grinding ragers. Half the songs sung in Bulgarian, half in English. After many line-up changes throughout the years, their sound has really come together. I’m really glad about this.

Comparisons aside, this is straight up grindcore, no two ways about it. Ten pulverizing songs with the sheer intensity that only a truly DIY record could have. I mean, the band have recorded, mixed and mastered everything by themselves. Still a wall of sound. All in all this is a solid record.

The cassette tape that was released by the Bulgarian DIY label Kontingent Records was all sold out at its release show, actually a benefit gig for the local Food Not Bombs group where all the money from Razgruha’s merch was donated to support the cause.



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The Royal They – Foreign Being


theroyalthey-foreign-beingBand: The Royal They
Album: Foreign Being
Label: King Pizza Records
Release date: Out Now
Sounds like: Be Your Own Pet cutting you open with their guitar strings. 

The stark contrast between the explosive snarl of album opener C.N.T. and the closing pop-punk blast of Weekender is one of the many, many great things about Foreign Being, the second album by New York trio, The Royal They. In fact, this album twists and turns itself inside out, reshaping constantly, but it is anchored by one common goal – to hit you hard and make you take notice. At first, it felt solely driven by anger – sure, there’s rage in this – boy, is their rage. The guitars howl and fizzle with acidic intent; but there’s also a hell of a lot of heart in this and that heart is pumping raw, bloody emotion from every ventricle.

Take C.N.T. for example (what’s missing? Just “U”) a rabid, powerful, brackish snap of furious noise; a rallying cry for those who have ever felt alone or lost in light of certain events in the entertainment industry. It points fingers and calls out all those with their “perverted breach” and talks of their “sick deceit” and is capped off with the huge “I know you’ll try to fuck the world/But you will not fuck me” scream from vocalist/guitarist Michelle Hutt. Powerful, emotional, burning rage spat with such passion and such vitriol and one of the best album openers I’ve heard in a long while.

Addiction and loss pepper the buzz-saw raw rock of Sludgefucker (excellent song title alert) as talk of twitching eyes, misunderstood anger and referencing moments of pure bliss (but being unsure why) are punched into your ears, whilst the dual guitars scrape and contort through a muddy slide of clawing turmoil. It’s also excellent and a brilliantly constructed rapid-fire piece of fiery riot-punk. This is met with the sledgehammer drums and booming riffs of Pandemic, which belch and hack a hoarse rasp of detuned, Torche-lite noise, held together with shuddering and bruising intent. Absolute credit to the guitars on this track, which chime with trepidation and stalwart misery and expand The Royal They’s discordant and blemish-erupting sound even wider.

The pedal isn’t always slammed firmly to the floor though – there are moments of reflection, especially on the cool-sounding indie-jam of Veritas, which builds into a crunching hard rock number, with an ever-so Smashing Pumpkins-vibe to proceedings and showcases the delicate beauty of Michelle’s vocals as opposed to her earlier snarls of cutting rage. Needler follows a similar path, as though you’re being stalked by the taunt guitar lines, the “I want you to know…” vocal croons and the churning, discordant riffs which lurch, belch and batter the airwaves, only to suddenly revert back to that eerie, menacing tone. Don’t be fooled by the sing-song voice Michelle has on the scything Say Less – while it might all sound all rainbows and smiles in the delivery, the noisy, ramshackle Be Your Own Pet-riffs and teeth-rattling percussion are devilishly corrupting.

It’s when we reach the end of the album everything starts to crackle with three chords and permanent joy. I cannot get out of my head how much Weekender sounds like a 90’s TV show theme. There’s something so “sunshine happy good times!” about the melody on this. “Yeah, I’m where I wanna be right now/Yeah, there’s nothing else to figure out” states Michelle, her lyrics bouncing brilliantly on this pogo-tastic pop-rock banger of an album closer, which absolutely shreds with infectious and confident zest and ultimate enthusiasm – superb.

More people need to hear this band. The frothing rage and high-five fun times in The Royal They is utterly captivating right from the word go. Foreign Being is a jagged, snarling, heckling, vitriolic blast of cathartic, boiling and positive punk. Join their racket now, you need this in your life and your ears.

Grab a slice of Foreign Being by The Royal They from King Pizza Records here or download directly from their bandcamp. Treat yourself.

 

Top tracks: Sludgefucker, Needler, Gullethead, Weekender

Links

The Royal They
King Pizza Records

Lizard Hips

Lizard Hips

Junior Vice President of Keep It Fast. In other news: I work in social media, talk about dinosaurs, run a book club and have amazing facial hair. I am also a male man who is still not dead.

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The Royal They – Foreign Being


Band: The Royal They
Album: Foreign Being
Label: King Pizza Records
Release date: Out Now
Sounds like: Be Your Own Pet cutting you open with their guitar strings. 

The stark contrast between the explosive snarl of album opener C.N.T. and the closing pop-punk blast of Weekender is one of the many, many great things about Foreign Being, the second album by New York trio, The Royal They. In fact, this album twists and turns itself inside out, reshaping constantly, but it is anchored by one common goal – to hit you hard and make you take notice. At first, it felt solely driven by anger – sure, there’s rage in this – boy, is their rage. The guitars howl and fizzle with acidic intent; but there’s also a hell of a lot of heart in this and that heart is pumping raw, bloody emotion from every ventricle.

Take C.N.T. for example (what’s missing? Just “U”) a rabid, powerful, brackish snap of furious noise; a rallying cry for those who have ever felt alone or lost in light of certain events in the entertainment industry. It points fingers and calls out all those with their “perverted breach” and talks of their “sick deceit” and is capped off with the huge “I know you’ll try to fuck the world/But you will not fuck me” scream from vocalist/guitarist Michelle Hutt. Powerful, emotional, burning rage spat with such passion and such vitriol and one of the best album openers I’ve heard in a long while.

Addiction and loss pepper the buzz-saw raw rock of Sludgefucker (excellent song title alert) as talk of twitching eyes, misunderstood anger and referencing moments of pure bliss (but being unsure why) are punched into your ears, whilst the dual guitars scrape and contort through a muddy slide of clawing turmoil. It’s also excellent and a brilliantly constructed rapid-fire piece of fiery riot-punk. This is met with the sledgehammer drums and booming riffs of Pandemic, which belch and hack a hoarse rasp of detuned, Torche-lite noise, held together with shuddering and bruising intent. Absolute credit to the guitars on this track, which chime with trepidation and stalwart misery and expand The Royal They’s discordant and blemish-erupting sound even wider.

The pedal isn’t always slammed firmly to the floor though – there are moments of reflection, especially on the cool-sounding indie-jam of Veritas, which builds into a crunching hard rock number, with an ever-so Smashing Pumpkins-vibe to proceedings and showcases the delicate beauty of Michelle’s vocals as opposed to her earlier snarls of cutting rage. Needler follows a similar path, as though you’re being stalked by the taunt guitar lines, the “I want you to know…” vocal croons and the churning, discordant riffs which lurch, belch and batter the airwaves, only to suddenly revert back to that eerie, menacing tone. Don’t be fooled by the sing-song voice Michelle has on the scything Say Less – while it might all sound all rainbows and smiles in the delivery, the noisy, ramshackle Be Your Own Pet-riffs and teeth-rattling percussion are devilishly corrupting.

It’s when we reach the end of the album everything starts to crackle with three chords and permanent joy. I cannot get out of my head how much Weekender sounds like a 90’s TV show theme. There’s something so “sunshine happy good times!” about the melody on this. “Yeah, I’m where I wanna be right now/Yeah, there’s nothing else to figure out” states Michelle, her lyrics bouncing brilliantly on this pogo-tastic pop-rock banger of an album closer, which absolutely shreds with infectious and confident zest and ultimate enthusiasm – superb.

More people need to hear this band. The frothing rage and high-five fun times in The Royal They is utterly captivating right from the word go. Foreign Being is a jagged, snarling, heckling, vitriolic blast of cathartic, boiling and positive punk. Join their racket now, you need this in your life and your ears.

Grab a slice of Foreign Being by The Royal They from King Pizza Records here or download directly from their bandcamp. Treat yourself.

 

Top tracks: Sludgefucker, Needler, Gullethead, Weekender

Links

The Royal They
King Pizza Records

Lizard Hips

Lizard Hips

Junior Vice President of Keep It Fast. In other news: I work in social media, talk about dinosaurs, run a book club and have amazing facial hair. I am also a male man who is still not dead.

More PostsWebsite

Follow Me:
TwitterYouTube





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