Featured Release Roundup: June 14, 2018

Geld: Demo 7” (No Patience) We were just raving about Geld’s 12” on Iron Lung, and now here’s a vinyl pressing of their demo (which we also carried back when it was a humble cassette). When I wrote my original description about this demo I noted that it sounded like hardcore with a streak of experimentalism, but it sounds a little different listening to it now in light of having heard where the band has gone after. Those experimental elements that don’t feel like the central focus here take the center stage on the LP, and while this demo is still a progressive hardcore record, at its core it's still a hardcore record. Specifically, it’s a hardcore record that’s very much in the tradition of Damaged with its dense layers of noise and overwhelming sense of claustrophobia and anxiety. Doubtless there are people out there who prefer this more straightforward recording, but I’m pleased that Geld seem to be moving in a direction that emphasizes and develops what’s unique about their sound. Still, this recording is an absolute rager, and there’s a reason that hardcore bands continue to articulate the emotions I mentioned above… they’re more or less universal and hardcore is uniquely positioned to articulate and explore these emotions, and Geld are far better than most at doing so.

Damagers: S/T 7” (Deranged) Debut 7” from this new Toronto band… actually, it’s their demo pressed to vinyl, but this is definitely a fully realized release and the actual demo didn't circulate widely. You might think from the imagery (bricks, baseball bats, etc.) that Damagers are a NYHC-type band, but they’re not at all… honestly, this 7” isn’t all that different from the new Tarantula EP that came out at the same time. While Damages are quite tough-sounding, they have a lot of catchiness and a lot of rock and roll in their sound, though the raw production recalls the legendary NYHC recordings from Don Fury’s studio. To me Damagers sound like an amped-up, hardcore-ified take on something like the Dead Boys or GBH… at their core they sound like a rock and roll band but the absolute meanest, heaviest, and ugliest rock and roll band they can possibly be. The recording here is raw and powerful, the songs are downright explosive… there’s nothing not to like here. If you like hardcore you’ll dig this.

Dirty & His Fists: Demo 2016 7” (Negative Jazz) Demo-on-vinyl from Californian punks Dirty & His Fists. We carried this back when it was a cassette, and I still stand by what I said about it then, so here it is again for your convenience: “Demo cassette from this new punk band out of California, and it's a real standout to me. While the effect on the vocals and the way some melodies are constructed and performed immediately recall the Spits, overall Dirty & His Fists fit in snugly in that magical little spot between punk and hardcore that I just can't get enough of. Some of their songs lean more toward hardcore and can start to sound a little like Sorry State favorites S.L.I.P., while other more mid-paced tracks can sound like a less Ramones-y Screeching Weasel at their toughest. I mean, the band comparisons are beside the point because it's clear that Dirty & His Fists aren't simply trying to sound like another band... their songs are too well thought out and their voice to singular and well developed for that. In a word, they just sound like a punk band, and a punk band with great songs, a great recording, and a powerful performance. I wouldn't be surprised to see this one get repressed on vinyl at some point because it's just that good. Highly recommended.”

Cold Meat / Ubik: Split 7” (Helta Skelta) Split 7” from these two Australian bands, both of whom we’ve heard from before. Cold Meat are up first and deliver two originals of their amped-up, garage-ish punk rock. If you’re a fan of their other stuff or similar bands like Helta Skelta or the Shitty Limits you won’t be disappointed as this is grade A, energetic, song-oriented punk rock. They close out their side with a cover of “Love in a Void” by Siouxsie and the Banshees. “Love in a Void” has never been one of my favorite Siouxsie songs, mostly because the band got so much better once they got a little more ambitious, but Cold Meat’s version tightens up the playing from the original version and reveals the great classic punk track lurking below the sloppiness of that early Banshees lineup. As for Ubik, they have one brief original and a cover of “Nausea” by X. While Ubik’s previous 7” had a Crisis-esque anarcho-punk vibe, their original here is a brief and blindingly fast pogo-punk number that has all the catchiness of their earlier stuff but way more energy. Most of their side of the split is devoted to the X cover, and while it’s solid and fun to listen to, I wouldn’t say their straightforward, stripped-down version does anything super exciting with the track. I would have preferred more original material over the covers, but the covers are still fun to listen to and I’m glad to get at least some new material from two bands I like a lot.

Von Gam: 1GenPunk 12” (Ken Rock) Don’t be fooled by the graffiti logo on the cover… this isn’t a Cold World side project, but rather some vintage 70s Swedish punk. Von Gam released a two-song single in 1980 (that’ll set you back $200-300 if you’re lucky enough to find one) and a (presumably) even rarer cassette in 1981, and from what I can tell from the not-very-Anglophone-friendly packaging this LP collects the single, a few of the songs from the cassette, and some other assorted tracks. It’s easy to see why the single goes for so much money, because Von Gam play great 70s European punk with a distinctly rock and roll flavor… fans of the Kids, Lost Kids, and Rude Kids (hell, maybe there are even some similar bands out there that don't have the word “kids” in their name!) will eat this up, as will fans of more modern bands in this vein like Finland’s Achtungs or Sweden’s Baddat for Trubbel. Von Gam dabble in some other sounds too… there’s some ska on this LP’s deeper tracks and more mid-paced, Clash-inspired songs, but the best songs here are absolute scorchers that will blow the wig off of anyone who has more than a few plays on their collection of Killed by Death compilations.

Denim & Leather: Sacred Autism 12” (Drunken Sailor) After a pair of standout 7”s, here’s the debut LP from Manchester’s Denim & Leather. I always feel the need to point out that the band’s name gives an incorrect impression… it makes me think they’ll sound like Motorhead or something, but Denim & Leather are one of the most progressive, artsiest hardcore bands around at the moment. In other words, if angular riffs, densely layered sounds, surprising rhythms, and thought-provoking lyrics are the things you want from a hardcore record you are really going to like this one. If you’re looking for some straightforward band comparisons, fans of Bad Breeding, No, Una Bestia Incontrolable, labels like Iron Lung and La Vida Es Un Mus, and bands who live in that fuzzy space between DIY hardcore and AmRep-style noise rock should be sure to check this out. I’m reluctant to describe this any further because it’s just something you have to listen to and appreciate for what it is. The record is jam-packed with ideas and Denim & Leather clearly have labored over its recording and presentation. It is a real feast for the ears, and if the above references have you intrigued I suggest you pick this one up with all due haste.

All New Arrivals

Violent Femmes: S/T 12" (Concord)
The Get-Up Kids: Kicker 12" (Polyvinyl)
Uniform & the Body: Mental Wounds Not Healing 12" (Sacred Bones)
Flasher: Constant Image 12" (Domino)
Tom Waits: Small Change 12" (Anti)
Dirty & His Fists: Demo 2016 7" (Negative Jazz)
Von Gam: 1GenPunk 12" (Ken Rock)
Messthetics: S/T 12" (Dischord)
Red Hare: Little Acts of Destruction 12" (Dischord)
2Pac: All Eyez on Me 12" (Death Row)
Gruesome: Twisted Prayers 12" (Relapse)
Yob: Our Raw Heart 12" (Relapse)
Migos: Culture 12" (Quality Control Music)
Gang Starr: Hard to Earn 12" (Virgin)
Makaveli: The 7 Day Theory 12" (Death Row)
Outkast: Aquemini 12" (LaFace)
Outkast: ATLiens 12" (LaFace)
Tsjuder: Throne of the Goat 12" (Season of Mist)
Vomitor: Pestilent Death 12" (Hell’s Headbangers)
Warrant: Cherry Pie 12" (Megaforce)
Whiplash: Power & Pain 12" (Wax Maniax)
Cold Meat / Ubik: Split 7" (Helta Skelta)
Geld: Demo 7" (No Patience)
Tomb Warden: Reflection of the Mistake 7" (Born Dead)
Bottomfeeder / Tomb Warden: Split 5" lathe (Born Dead)
Charmer / Amara: Split 7” (Born Dead)
Whilt: S/T 7” (Blackleaf)
Tomb Warden / Murder: Split cassette (Born Dead)


Scientist & Prince Jammy: Scientist and Jammy Strike Back! 12" (Real Gone Music)
Child Molesters: 1978 Hound Dog Recordings 12" (Negative Jazz)
Various: Killed by Meth Vol 2 12" (It’s Trash)
Dag Nasty: Can I Say 12" (Dischord)
Dag Nasty: Dag with Shawn 12" (Dischord)
Embrace: S/T 12" (Dischord)
Faith / Void: Split 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: End Hits 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: First Demo 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: In on the Kill Taker 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: Margin Walker 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: Red Medicine 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: Repeater 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: S/T 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: Steady Diet of Nothing 12" (Dischord)
Fugazi: The Argument 12" (Dischord)
Gray Matter: Food for Thought 12" (Dischord)
Lungfish: ACR1999 12" (Dischord)
Lungfish: Pass and Stow 12" (Dischord)
Lungfish: Rainbows from Atoms 12" (Dischord)
Lungfish: Talking Songs 12" (Dischord)
Minor Threat: Out of Step 12" (Dischord)
Minor Threat: S/T 12" (Dischord)
Nation of Ulysses: 13 Point Program 12" (Dischord)
Nation of Ulysses: Plays Pretty for Baby 12" (Dischord)
Q and Not U: Different Damage 12" (Dischord)
Various: Four Old 7"s... 12" (Dischord)
Void: Sessions 12" (Dischord)
The Effects: Eyes to the Light 12" (Dischord)
Bikini Kill: Revolution Girl Style Now 12" (Bikini Kill)
Bikini Kill: S/T 12" (Bikini Kill)
Bikini Kill: Yeah Yeah Yeah 12" (Bikini Kill)
Priests: Nothing Feels Natural 12" (Sister Polygon)
Rollins Band: Lifetime 12" (2.13.61)
Chain & the Gang: Experimental Music 12" (Radical Elite)
Ramones: Rocket to Russia 12" (Rhino)
Gorillaz: Demon Days 12" (Parlophone)
Hot Snakes: Suicide Invoice 12" (Sub Pop)
Prince: Purple Rain 12" (Warner Bros)
Iron Maiden: S/T 12" (BMG)
Iron Maiden: The Number of the Beast 12" (BMG)
Godspeed You! Black Emperor: Lift Your Skinny Fists 12" (Constellation)
Panic! At the Disco: All My Friends We're Glorious 12" (Fueled By Ramen)
SZA: CTRL 12" (Top Dawg Entertainment)
Pink Floyd: Dark Side of the Moon 12" (Sony)
Weezer: Blue Album 12" (Geffen)
GZA: Liquid Swords 12" (Universal)
Slayer: Reign in Blood 12" (American Recordings)
Nirvana: Unplugged in New York 12" (DGC)
NWA: Straight Outta Compton 12" (Priority)
Thelonious Monk: Monk's Dream 12" (WaxTime)
Kendrick Lamar: Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City 12" (Interscope)
Childish Gambino: Camp 12" (Glassnote)
Childish Gambino: Awaken My Love 12" (Glassnote)
Amy Winehouse: Back to Black 12" (Island)
Bad Brains: ROIR 12" (ROIR)
Minutemen: Double Nickels on the Dime 12" (SST)
Black Flag: My War 12" (SST)
Black Flag: Slip It In 12" (SST)
Black Flag: Jealous Again 12" (SST)
Black Flag: Loose Nut 12" (SST)
The Landlords: Fitzgerald's Paris 12" (Feel It)
Dirty & His Fists: S/T 7" (Feel It)
Haircut: Shutting Down 7" (Feel It)
The Cowboys: Live at Tony's Garage 7" (Feel It)
Rik & the Pigs: Blue Jean Queen 7" (Feel It)

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