Archive for the Punk Category

Harry Pussy – You’ll Never Play This Town Again (Load) 2008

Posted in Music, noise, Punk on February 20, 2009 by noisenoisenoise


 The recent output from Load Records has been a cavalcade of treats for your average noise/rock nerd. No longer merely the home of Lightning Bolt, Load are releasing some of the most challenging rock records going around right now. So it kind of makes sense that they would release a rather odd compilation of the Miami noise/rock pioneers, Harry Pussy. I say that this is an odd compilation because it only contains recordings made by the band in 1997 which I think is the year before they broke up.  A career spanning compilation this is not. There are  multiple takes (both in the studio and live) of many of the songs here including the two in the clips below. I’m not entirely convinced that siting through multiple versions of certain tracks is the best idea anyone has ever had and it raises the question whether this is a celebration of a great band that disappeared from view or merely an archival document for completests. This is the only Harry Pussy I’ve heard so I can’t really answer my question but whatever the answer might be, Harry Pussy are great fun.

When listening to Harry Pussy, I thought of no wave pioneers teenage Jesus and the Jerks crossed with Shit and Shine and Moha!.  Harry Pussy seem firmly ensconsed in the art/free rock category of the whole left field music spectrum. I’ve sat through this a couple of times now and each time I do, I’ve really enjoyed the ride.  I’m keen to hear their earlier stuff (the band started in 1992) and Siltbreeze still have copies of some of their records in print.  Anyone want to comment on those earlier records?

Smash The Mirror


Crime – San Francisco’s Still Doomed (Swami) 2004

Posted in Crime, Music, Punk with tags on November 15, 2008 by noisenoisenoise


Why haven’t you bought this yet? I mean seriously this one is a no brainer. Crime were, in my opinion,  the best example of west coast seventies punk hands down. Just how punk were they? Well they had names like Johnnie Strike, Frankie Fix and Ron the Ripper. They never released a proper album just a couple of singles and an unreleased studio session and most importantly they played in police uniform for the inmates of San Quentin prison. Crime are now best known for having their seminal Hotwire My Heart covered by Sonic Youth on their awesome Sister record. They deserve greater recognition than that. San Francisco’s Still Doomed contains everything they ever recorded including the alternate takes of the two singles that, due to legal problems, couldn’t be included on the earlier compilation San Farncisco’s Doomed from the early 1990’s. The track Gangster Funk is also missing but having never heard it I’m not sure just how important that track is. The definitive original  version of Hotwire My Heart has still not been released but the alternate take included on this record is still mighty fine. The best punk band that should have made it and never did. 

ESG – A South Bronx Story (Soul Jazz) 2000

Posted in ESG, Music, Punk with tags on September 20, 2008 by noisenoisenoise

The story of ESG is an interesting one. The teenage Scroggins sisters from New York were bought instruments  by their mother in a an attempt to keep them off the streets and away from trouble. ESG which stands for Emerald, Sapphire and Gold  were virtually unknown during their time but somehow managed to influence music in all genres for the next 20 add years. They were purveyor of inept, minimalist funk. Repetition was a cover for the fact that their songs were bereft of much substance but the slivers of ideas they had were ground breaking. Everyone form LCD Soundsystems, A Certain Ratio, Happy Mondays, Luscious Jackson, The Rapture and countless house  and hiphop artists owe  their careers to ESG.

ESG were really  an anomaly. A band who cited influences like Motown, Rufus and Latin rhythms were signed to the  same record label (99 Records) with the likes of Liquid Liquid and the  Bush Tetras, bands who were at the for front of the post punk movement. They were booked to play in punk clubs and were one of the first bands to play at Manchester’s infamous Hacienda club.  They released a smattering of singles and an album in the  early 1980’s before being a victim of the litigation that occurred between 99 Records and Sugarhill over the illegal sampling of Liquid Liquid’s Cavern. Although 99 Records one both bands went bankrupt and most of the bands from each label drifted into obscurity. ESG’s music was kept alive during the house revival of helate 1980’s and from time to time compilations were released of their material. But is took the excellent archivists at Soul Jazz to really do ESG justice. South Bronx Story contains everything you really need from ESG’s back catalogue and once again the booklet is a subperb and thus makes this record a travesty to download.


Jay Reatard – Blood Visions (In The Red) 2006

Posted in Jay Reatard, Music, Punk on February 3, 2008 by noisenoisenoise


This was a peer group pressure purchase. Well not really, although it did come highly recommended form those nice people at Missing Link. The reviews I’d read of this were not particularly positive. I think many of us are sick of the past being rehashed ad infintim. For instance has anyone else noticed the prevelance of all of these awful floppy haired bands ripping off Orange Juice and The Fire Engines (I’m looking at you Vampire Weekend). The things that really shits me about these rehashes is that their interpretations of amazing bands are generic and bland. They bring nothing new to the party. Look at the Von Bondies. One great pop song and albums full of shit. Even Clockcleaner and Pissed Jeans don’t exactly light up my life. Sure those records are pretty good but are they the most exciting thing that happened last year? Fuck no. If I want to listen to Jesus Lizard or Black Flag then I’ll play Down or Wasted Again not some interpretation of those records.

Based on that rant I shouldn’t like Blood Visions. Other writers have invoked the names of The Wipers, The Adverts, Wire, Gary Numan, Devo and sure, there is no doubt that Mr Reatard races back to the early 1980’s and plunders the best of new wave. I really don’t care. Blood Visions is a very clever hook filled, punky, poppy little gem. The production is non-existent. This album was recorded not produced and that, my friends, is part of the charm. It’s like the the best garage-new-wave-punk-pop record ever made. There is nothing on this record you haven’t heard before, but the songs on Bloodvisions are so great that I can’t be arsed to play a game of spot-the-influence. In fact the fourth track, My Shadow, is the best pop song since Kelly Clarkson’s Since U Been Gone.

Some records should never be over analysed because doing so destroys just how vital and fun pop music can be and that, in my opinion, would be a terrible shame. Blood Visions gets revisionism right. It’s one of the only records in recent times that does and for that reason alone you should buy this.

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