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Record Reviews

Published in Reglar Wiglar #20, 2004

I Learned It by Watching You (Law of Inertia)

Aly With An I, whoops, I mean Ali (with an i) With an I, despite a rather dumb name, are a pretty decent rock band–kind of a cross between a pop punk band and an emo band without overdoing the pop or the emo. Aly's—I mean Ali's (with an i) press sheet says that they "don't care if they get big or not, but they probably will." If I was probably going to get big then I might profess the same indifference. But alas, there are no guarantees in this business—Irresistible Frank

Condemned To Suffer (Victory)

All out friggin metal, man. If you don't like metal then you, my friend, are the one that is condemned to suffer. Sorry, I'm new to this review writing stuff. I'm more of a memo writer and a crafter of foreign policy, but I love everything about this band—Donald Rumsfeld

Anadivine (Sidecho)

WARNING: This review contains language not suitable for people offended by the word "fuck." Readers of this review be further warned: you've got a cranky, slightly bitchy, Joey T. Germ at the helm. Just be careful, that's all I'm sayin'. OK, let me tell ya why I'm in a fuckin' tizzy. You forced it out of me. So I rented Whatever Happened to Baby Jane on DVD from a major fucking video rental chain and it's all scratched to fuck (my VCR is broke by the fucking way). But, despite being scratched, it plays no problem. That is to say, it plays no problem until the last five minutes of the movie and then it freezes and I can't get it to go forward or backward and I can't skip ahead and go back–I can't do anything. I'm fucked and now I don't know how the flick ends. Did that one old broad end up strangling that other old broad or what the fuck? Whatever happened in the end of Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? Shoot me an e-mail if you know the answer. Anyway, Anadivine formed because of their "common love for the craft of songwriting." I LOVE that somebody still cares about the craft of songwriting! Fuckin' A! OK, let's get beyond that short burst of sarcasm shall we? I don't even know if this qualifies as emo. I don't even know what emo is anymore. The facts, however, are thus: Anadivine is a four piece band out of Orange County, New York. They craft songs that are sincere and emotional and deal with emotion and the music is driving. It also sounds an awful lot like most of the emo I've heard in the past couple of years, but it's good that there are still bands out there that care about the craft of songwriting. God bless 'em, I guess—Joey Germ

Search for Something More (Kung Fu)

Antifreeze, I knew these guys when they were kids, man, little whippersnappers from up there in Appleton, Wisconsin, home of Houdini and... some other shit probably, not far from Neenah and Menasha, where they make manhole covers, over there by Oshkosh, by gosh. Anyway. I think these guys are the Ataris' bitches, maybe. You never know. More mature than their debut Four Letter Words ('love' was one of them if I remember correctly) which was mostly hyperactive pop punk. Not really my cup of tea, but I only just recently started drinking tea (this is true) and it's not bad. I plan to drink more of it. Any analogies to this CD and the drinking of tea were unintentional. Just singing the praises of tea is all—Jayne Wayne

Waking the Fallen (Hopeless)

Some cool metal riffs on this record and just a lot of shit going on in general. I'm hearing a lot of Iron Maiden in the guitar and vocals, and Ozzy, and maybe some Slayer and just a bunch of shit, man. It's good to see that somebody's goin' back and dippin' into that big bucket of once stigmatized 80s metal and mixing it up with the aggression of hardcore and playing it for the kids. This is what we were fighting for in the 80s, man! This is it!—Malcolm Tent

Do You Like It? (Bang)

Excitable poppin' rock music from this co-ed Chicago trio, Bang Bang. Sounds like Richard Hell fronting the B-52s, a retro gang bang if you will—Jayne Wayne

The Silent Circus (Re-Issue) (Victory)

Crazy breaks and time changes on this super heavy, loud circus of a record. Some shit on here is so insane it's almost comical. Twists, turns, and some unexpected shit make The Silent Circus stand out from the rest of the hardcore-meets-screamo pile. In fact, this record is all over the place. It's almost too all over the place. Between you and me (and the Buried of course), it's almost too much. Almost—Malcolm Tent

Losing You (Crustacean)

Big, Big Furnace no doubt deserve something more than just a flip review for this record... unfortunately it they sent it to the

Reglar Wiglar. Oh well, such is the fate of many a deserving piece of music. There seems to be a Chicago theme with this CD from this Wisconsin group. A rare tip of the hat to us Fucking Illinois Bastards? F.I.B.s, that's what they call us. Isn't that mean? After all we've done for them.Wisconsinites are always hatin' on us Illinoisans. Hate the game not the player, Cheese Eaters! Anyway, the cover photos were shot in Chicago, some of the songs were recorded in Chicago and the the song "Losing You" sounds like the band Chicago (must be the trumpet). So anyway, if this is some attempt at reconciliation then on behalf of Illinois, I accept your apology for being our nerdy neighbor to the north—Joey Germ

Prototype (Militia Group)

I don't know, I've gotta listen to bands like this carefully 'cause for every good thing I like about this band and this CD, I can find something that I feel the opposite about. Big Collapse is pretty much a straight ahead rock band. Nothing wrong with that, but they dip back to their hardcore and emo roots enough times that is throws the whole thing for me. They'd be better off just going for a more mainstream solid rock sound, in my opinion—Irresistible Frank

Movement (Quincy Shanks)

Five songs of angst ridden, melodic hardcore from Black Print, who for all intents and purposes, play angst ridden, melodic hardcore. And they do it pretty convincingly... and pretty well. And you're reading that in black print so it must be true—Whoratio Alger

Pass the Flask (Fiddler)

The Bled is a metal band from the desert and Pass the Flask is their CD. The cover art is pretty weird and arty (dumb?). That aside, the music is pretty heavy, the lyrics appropriately abstract, the mood: intense, somber. I do believe that a few Lamb of God riffs have been appropriated. Nicely done. Not bad for Tucson. I kid Tucson. I love Tucson. I've never been to Tucson. I must never go to Tuscon—Dinky Dellabella

Sings Greatest Palace Music (Drag City)

Bonnie Prince Billy indeed sings the greatest Palace music. Greatest Palace music as determined by fans, and the musicians appearing on the record, some of whom are Nashville session players. A good song is a good song whether it's done on a single acoustic guitar or rounded out with pedal steel, fiddle, or mandolin. That holds true with Palace music. Same sad, beautiful music, man (sniff, sniff). Perfect Saturday morning coffee drinking music. Which is ironic 'cause that's what I'm doing right now—Snappy Jim

There's No Eye in Pussy (Crustacean)

This sounds like what you would get if you captured Rob Zombie, fattened him up with bacon, shipped him in a wooden crate to wherever-the-fuck Wisconsin and let him loose into the wilderness to form a band with whatever jamokes he could round up and ply with whiskey. Throw in a dash of seventies rock and maybe a whack from the funk stick and I guarantee you will see the eye in puss eye—Sasquatch Jim

Near Life Experience (Hopeless)

One of the perks of being a record reviewer (an unpaid record reviewer I might add) is that I get to witness musical trends as they come and go. Whether it's alternative, grunge, pop, ska, indie, emo, or this mixation (not a word) and meldation (not a word) of hardcore and the emo music–screamo, some call it–I see and hear it all. Well, the screamo shoe fits snugly with this Chicago band and their record Near Life Experience. Not bad for what it is, but it's already kind of worn out (or is that well worn?). The former can be annoying and yet the later can be comforting. Interesting—Jayne Wayne

James at Thirty-Five (Get Hip)

Don't know who the kid is on the cover but somebody whacked him good with the goofy stick. Anyway, the singer sounds like a dead ringer for Mike Wing (Vambo Marble Eye, Team Satan, Leghorn, Booker Noe, etc.). I'm not gonna hold that against him though. This is a collection of sixteen songs of rock, pop and roll about love, girls, love and shit. I still don't agree with the cover art but that's just me—Jayne Wayne

Four Songs (no label)

Four rockin' tunes from Chicago's one and only purveyors of whiskey and beer soaked big rock riffs, Thee Decibators. This EP features the spastic-tacular, "Factory Floor," as well as a new version of "Burning Under the Sun," plus two more new and previously unreleased nuggets. Good old fashioned drinkin' rock and rollover—Private Chomps

The Dexateens (Estrus)

I took a bunch of dexateens one night at a party, and dude, I was soooo wasted, man. But that's beside the point (and rather silly, actually). The Dexateens are from Tuscaloosa, which I do believe is Alabamy. The D-Teens play a bluesy, southern rock, that is both high energy and laid-back at the same time. The vocalist sounds like Mike Wing (Vambo Marble Eye, Team Satan, Leghorn, Booker Noe, etc.) but I won't hold that against them—Jayne Wayne

Would Like to Congratulate You (Hollow Bunny)

This CDR arrived in a plastic baggy with little or no further information on what exactly a Dick Panther is. After listening to their CD, I am no closer to unraveling that sweet mystery. I will say that it is some bizarre, humorous, twisted home recorded music. They appear to be from Jamaica Plain, Mass. Possibly a drum machine or some computerized drum program, keyboards. Possibly the work of a lone Dick Panther, could even be someone's name. If that's the case, I congratulate Mr. Panthers on his strange accomplishments—P.C. Jones

Volume & Density (Asian Man)

For those of you who don't know (I didn't) Duvall is the return of Josh and Eli Caterer of 90s Smoking Popes fame. Josh formed Duvall after his spiritual rebirth as a devout Christian. I must admit I've always considered The Popes to be an acquired taste (one that I myself never acquired) but I like Duvall's simple, steady, distorted guitar hooks and Josh's crooning. As South Park has taught us you can pretty much take any love song and sing it about God or Jesus or whoever. So if you were/are a Smoking Popes fan and that's you're only hang-up, get over it... and praise Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, Amen—P.C. Jones

Empty Spaces (Crustacean)

From the Dairyland capitol of Madison, Wisconsin, Echostatic deliver a late eighties indie rock sound on this eight song CD. Sonic Youth is an obvious influence and Empty Spaces even features a cover of SY's "Schizophrenia" which manages to capture the dual guitar frenzy created by Thurston and Lee with admirable results. The other original tracks, while maybe not as dynamic as the venerated masters, seek to recreate the textural soundscape of that aforementioned group and era of guitar rock pop noise—Jayne Wayne

Other Victorians (Lookout!)

Unlike anything heard on Lookout! before is right. Forget the p-rock for a moment (or an evening) and you'll find Other Victorians is a much more progressive enterprise than any Screeching Weasel EP you're likely to encounter anytime soon. More in the vein of Radiohead than the Mr. T Experience. I don't know what other Victorians think about this record but this Victorian thinks this ain't a bad piece of atmospheric, post-pre-modern-Post-Raisin-Bran rock and I'm digging it—Donkey Man

Friend or Foe? (Jive)

You didn't think that just because ska has fallen out of favor with the kids that ska would just go away, did you? Seriously, you didn't really think that, did you? You did? You jerk-off! The Forces of Evil are back with the ska, y'all, and now that every other band isn't trying to get over on the ska tip, I kinda like it, so you had better put me in the Friend category, FOE, 'cause you don't want me as a foe. Believe that!—Dick Cheney

Gotta Get Out (Pravda)

Formed by Skipper and Goodtime of New Duncan Imperials fame, and including ex-Krinkle, Sal, on bass and guitarist Dag Juhlin of Poi Dog Pondering and the Slugs, the Goldstars are here to kick your ass back a decade or two but more possibly three. Back to the electric organ grinding garage rock of the 60s. Gotta get retro-fitted—T. Bone

1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours (Lookout!)

Greenday didn't just drop from the sky the year punk broke. Nope, they actually put in their time in the Berkeley punk scene and released a few LPs and seven inch EPs for Lookout! records. This is a repackaged re-release of their first album, two seven inches and a compilation track. Green Day didn't invent the genre, but after years and years of listening to countless imitators, it's good to hear it done so well. As Yoda might say, a new found respect for Green Day I have. (Sorry to get all Star Wars geeky on ya)—D. Rumsfeld

The Groodies (Red Line)

Don't know what a Groodie is but this is some good, crunchy, tight hardcore. The live and raw sounding recording and the reverb on the vocals make them sound like the Adolescents' female counterparts. SoCal Hardcore from the Windy City. I love it–Joey Germ

Sincerely Without Wax (doubleplusgood)

Happy was formed by ex-H. Chinaski guitarist/singer Andrew Johnson, and if I remember that band correctly, continues in that same vein of controlled spasmic rock that falls somewhere close to punk, math rock, and emo without ever falling close enough to be captured by that comparison. From Oshkosh, b'gosh—Irresistible Frank \

Self-titled (no label)

They took their name from one of our favorite public servants and one of our favorite home appliances, and I suspect that's not just tobacco in those cigarettes they're smoking. HWM wisely avoids slavish genre exercises by tastefully skimming the surfaces and tapping the rich veins of AC/DC-ish classic riffing and Touch & Go stop-start berzerko-rock and imbuing them with a self-confident, un-fussy songwriting sense, allthewhile wringing four nifty you-have-or-maybe-you-haven't heard it all before numbers out of the still-moist dishcloth of (yes) rock and roll. I'm fully aware that I'm mixing metaphors and running on with my sentences, but this is the Reglar Wiglar and Harold Washing Machine are great enough to justify the desecration of the Queen's tongue—Ken Snow

The Sweet Sound of Excess (Disposable Pop Revolution)

Twelve songs of clever, catchy pop music from the artists formerly known as Grain U.S.A. If a lot of those pop punk bands could write more like these guys, a lot of those pop punk bands wouldn't suck quite as much as they do. Oh yes, I'm talking to you, Blink 182!–Joey Germ

Jerry Rigged (no label)

One of the more absurd aspects of writing reviews for this increasingly stupid magazine is the diversity of music that we receive for review. Diverse in the rock universe that is. For example, I could go from listening to a blisteringly angry hardcore/punk screamo band to this self-released pop music CD. Boom! Just like that. The Jerrys is called such, presumably, because all the songs were written and performed by Jerry Schwartz, so everyone in the band is named Jerry. Get it?! The Jerry's songs are catchy in a Beatles, 60s pop kinda way but the production is sorely lacking. The drums sound like they were recorded down the street and around the corner (and up a tree). I have to admit though, the police sirens on "911" did fool me. I thought it was the real deal. That's just the neighborhood though. I'm just sorry I ate my stash. I guess I'm not that sorry though—Muggsy McMurphy

Light Up (Asian Man)

Just a fire. Not a very bright fire, not a very warm fire, and consequently, not a very good fire—Jayne Wayne

Lick 'em and Leave 'em (Get Hip)

There's something vaguely (overtly?) retro about this Chicago band, which might explain why they're on Get Hip. Down and dirty rock that's not ashamed (I would hope) to tread water in the same dirty rock pool of our forefathers. Guitar solos? Yep. Long hair? For the most part. Snarly, sneering vocals? Check. Clever sexual innuendo-laced album title? Lick 'Em and Leave 'Em? That's totally nasty, I totally get it! By the way, who gave rock permission to make a comeback anyway? That's what I wanna know—Irresistible Frankfurter

The Little Killers (Crypt)

The Little Killers get the distinction of being Crypt's first release in over five years. Why a five year break? Dunno. The LKs play stripped down, bass-guitar- drums, dirty rock and roll. Twelve songs, twenty-seven minutes and some seconds to shake your shit and get you back to the basics (provided, of course, that you weren't already there)—Irresistible Frank

Whatever Happened to PJ Soles/Alive 05 (Studio E)

I remember way, way back in the day, I chanced upon Local H playing at The Avalon in Chicago. The Avalon is now a tanning spa, but way, way back in the day it was a dark and dirty rock club with two music rooms that had bands playing simultaneously, so a lot of rock music moved through there. They would also always be out of their advertised beer special too. Even if you were there fifteen seconds after the doors opened, which never ceased to get my goat, but I digress. Local H happened to be playing that night and while this was at the height of Nirvana mania and my initial reaction was that this was nothing more than a Nirvana rip-off, the ferocity with which Scott Lucas and drummer, Joe Daniels attacked their songs was undeniable. They went on to bigger and better things and seem to have come full circle with this new record. The Nirvana influence is still there. Now with ex-Rights of the Accused drummer, Brian St. Clair on the skins, Local H still pack a punch. Smashing Pumpkins, Veruca Salt, Urge Overkill; gone, No wait, Urge Overkill: back. Local H: still here–Joey Germ

Under Suspicion (Victory)

I was at the dentist today having a filling replaced, or refilled or some shit, so half my mouth is still numb from the Novocain, so when I take a drink from my coffee cup, coffee dribbles down the side of my mouth. It's freaking me out, man. Anyfuckingway, Madcap. What do you think of when you hear the name Madcap? Madcapped, no? Pretty decent punk rock. It's good to see that Victory ain't just pushin' metal down our throats, you know? Madcap ain't bad. Of course, I've only listened to one song so far—Jack Cracknuts

Rusted on Through (Sophisticated Monkey)

Despite the rather humorous press kits' promise of oral sex if I, the music writer, listen to this CD three times, I think I'm going to pass on that offer. I'm going to pass even though I fulfilled my part of the bargain. I did listen to this CD three times and having done such, I have only one thing to say: I want those 78 minutes of my life back!–Joey Germ

Divine Right of Means (doubleplusgood)

This is the third Means CD in about as many years and the second for DPG. The Divine Right finds the Means continuing in their own tradition of heavy guitar rock and throat wrenching vocals, but with a few surprises thrown in. In fact, one or two songs even come close to balladry while still exposing the ugly side–Joey Germ

Slumber Party (Roostercow)

You know what? Hüsker Dü are, like, the most overrated band of all time. I swear, the way people go on and on and on about them on THE FUCKING INTERNET, actually, I like Hüsker Dü okay, but I don't wish they would get back together or anything. Same goes for The Replacements and I think MotherScratcher shares that sentiment, because if The Replacement ever got back together, the jig would be up. This sucks!—Soggy Sprinkles

The 4-Track Adventures of Venice Shoreline Chris(Asian Man)

This is some home-recorded rootsy ska written and performed by one-man-ska-band Chris Murray. This ain't no Reel Big Fish or Less Than Jake ska. This might, in fact, be your parent's ska. That rough sound that at first listen Moon Records thought too rough to release, is exactly what is so endearing about this 4-track adventure. This is actually a re-release from that original Moon Records issue. And it's a good thing too, as I plan on leaving this sucker right where it is (it's in my CD player)—Jayne Wayne

Switchblade Tongues, Butterknife Brains (Gearhead)

If you're like me, and you think that the Turks' debut album "Destroy! Oh Boy!" is one of the top five achievements in the history of human endeavor, then you'd certainly agree that this collection of singles and outtakes ranks somewhere in the top twenty. Right between constructing The Great Wall of China, and eating eighty-five hot dogs in twelve minutes—Don Cheeto

Compromises (Pat's Record Company)

It's funny to me to see that so many bands coming out of Appleton, Wisconsin because my Grandma used to live there and it was boring as fuck-all when I used visit. Of course, this was in the late 70s/early 80s. It's good to see that the effects of my visits when I was twelve are finally being felt in that town. Anyway, Number One Fan play passionate rock music with "deeply personal" lyrics, and are sure to be huge and it's all thanks to me. You're welcome—Thee Brat

For the Love of Music (Sub City)

This is a CD of acoustic songs written and performed by Asian Man Records founder, Mike Park. Songs of love, politics and racial harmony yet not folky, not trippy, dippy, or even hippy for that matter. And not a bad break from the punk rock, either—P.C. Jones

Neu (Asian Man)

This spastic Japanese quartet have been compared to Kraftwerk and Devo but to me they sound more like Scissor Girls were trapped with Frogger in an Asteroids machine. (How do you like that comparison, Germ, you fucking hack!) And if any of those handy comparisons haven't quite piqued the interest of your little peabrains, then trust me when I say this CD kicks ass—Irresistible Frank

Saturday's Haze (Get Hip)

Rainy Day Saints is a one man band featuring Dave Swanson on all instruments. Some of you may be familiar with Dave from his work with GBV, Cobra Verde, Death of Samantha (the list goes on). Saturday's Haze is a collection of a dozen psychedelic pop rock tunes that actually sit quite well with a Saturday haze, or I imagine it would since it is Thursday afternoon now. It is quite hazy today, however—Grover Cleveland

Fulltime (Direct Hit)

Mega-super-big-fuckin' riffs on RPG's debut full-length. Larger than life amps, many cubic feet of hair and an insatiable appetite for the rock. RPG may stand for rocket propelled grenade but I think it should stand for Rad Phuckin' Ggggrrrock, man!—Joey RPGerm

Tacomatose (Initial)

Five songs in the indie rock tradition by some dudes who are (were?) in much heavier, darker bands (Harkonen, Botch). Anthemic blue collar rock and roll according to the press kit, but I don't necessarily get the blue collar thing, whatever that means. One of the songs has a harmonica. Maybe that's where that comes from. Anyway, while not a bad attempt at something else, not too satisfying for this listener overall—P.C. Jones

Love It or Leave Me (Fiddler)

The influences of The Police, The Cure, and U2 were not delivered as promised in the press sheet. What was delivered was a rather generic brand of bland rock that insulted my intelligence as someone who has, not only heard of the aforementioned bands, but who's also heard their music. Tsk, tsk—Jayne Wayne

Cyborgs Revisited (Get Back!)

Sheez, humanity's overrated ain't it? Sure, once in a great while, someone, somewhere does something that isn't, like, totally counter-to-what-we're-all-supposed-to-be-in-this-together-for, but really, when and if you get down to us doing what's good for us, we'd be better off without ourselves, right? Well, maybe. So Simply Saucer sure made a pretty good case for a brighter future as such on Cyborgs Revisited. For the unhip out there, CR is one of those records. One that you should hear, but perhaps you haven't. Yet. A record like Trout Mask Replica or the third Big Star record or Champion Do or Oar. If you've ever wished that The Dream Syndicate sounded a little more–no wait–A LOT more like The Velvet Underground, were from Canada, wrote songs celebrating the inevitable (entire human race replaced by machines (GOOD RIDDANCE, yippee!)) and rocked harder, this is the album for you!—Oliver Trask

Rock Scene Problem (Crustacean)

This Madison four piece keep the Killdozer tradition alive and well, utilizing the same heavy drudge rock, gravely vocals, and dark sense of humor. Entertaining on CD and I would imagine equally, if not more, entertaining to catch in a drunk, bleary Wisconsin bar atmosphere. Their press kit says, "they usually try to avoid one another outside of rehearsals and shows." I love it, that's the way it should be—Snappy Jim

Bright Flashes (Victory)

A little treat for Snapcase fans, a CD of outtakes or "lost songs" from 2002's End Transmission album. Interesting, interesting. The covers include two Devo, ("Freedom of Choice, "Gates of Steel"), one Helmet, ("Blacktop") and a Jane's Addiction ("Mountain Song"). If you are a Snapcase devotee then you simply must possess this unusual and interesting album—Jack the Dandy

The Strife and Times (Chunksaah)

This is a forty-two song, two disc remastered release chronicling the history of New Jersey's Sticks and Stones, a band that was around in the early 90s East Coast hardcore scene, which I wasn't around myself. I mean, I was around, of course I was around, but I wasn't around this, you know. Anyfuckingway, The Clash, Replacements and Television are cited as influences but I also hear a little bit of early Soul Asylum as well. It will take me awhile to get through this CD proper and will require more time than I have to get this review in but I'm thinking this one will hold up even beyond last year's tenth anniversary of the release of the bands debut, Theme Song for Nothing. That's why re-releases are so important. They introduce people to bands who have long since broken up, bands people like myself, who couldn't be everywhere in the country at the same time, have never heard of. Sticks and Stones may break my bones anyday—Condi Rice

Savin Hill (Crosscheck)

Boston's Street Dogs are a working class punk rock band featuring Mike McClogan (formerly of the Dropkick Murphys) on vocals. If you've heard this kind of anthemic shout-along punk rock before then you have a pretty good idea of what the Street Dogs are all about, and if you haven't, this might not be the best place to start—Jimmy Jangle

Incorrect Thoughts (C.D. Presents Ltd.)

Joey Germ told me that "Slave To My Dick" was the only thing that this band ever did, and that then they turned into D.O.A. I'm no punk historian, so I don't know about the D.O.A. part, but about the "S.T.M.D." part: wrrrong-o! Sure, they recorded that classic classic (included here) but they also made the fifty-sixth best record album ever, which sounds a lot more like the Wipers than I would have guessed. And if Germ ever wants to hear "Let's Go Down To Hollywood (& Shoot People!)", he's just going to have to beg!—Andre Salmon

Palm Trees and Power Lines (Artemis)

Palm trees and power lines? Lemme guess, we're talking about fuckin' California. Well, anyway that's cool. I was in a sugar cult when I was, like, five years old. Yeah, I was down with Sugar Bear when that brother was down with sugar, but times change and you grow up, you know what I'm sayin'? So, anyway, Sugarcult is a pop rock band that writes decent, if not a bit generic, pop/rock songs. This is their second record. Their first one soundscanned 300,000 copies. They have played with The Strokes, The Hives, The Vines, Blink 182, and Good Charlotte. They made #3 on Rolling Stone's recent "Hot List." They have a "DIY attitude"—Frosty O.

Ghost Ship (Swami)

John Reis puts out records more frequently than many of our readers get laid. No affront intended to the sexual prowess of our readership, but the guy's in a lot of bands. He's no Robert Pollard in the prolificacy department, but the answer to the question "What kind of man reads Reglar Wiglar?" ain't quite Ron Jeremy either. Nevertheless, the Sultans aren't the best band J.R.'s in (the Hot Snakes are) but they do tread water admirably in The Real Kids' and The Clash's end of the pool. Definitely worth a few bucks if you find it used, like I did—I.C. London

twinHATERS (Failed Experiment)

Elements of metal and punk rock get all mixed up together in this batch of ten tunes from Chi-Town's TwinHaters. As a twin however, I am very offended by the name—Tweedle Dee

3 song demo (no label)

Vamplifier either play blood-sucking amplified music or perform amplified seduction, I'm not sure which but this three song sampler demonstrates a knack for sophisticated songwriting that will have you thirsting (loudly) for more!—Count Von Blowenstein

Blizzard Blue No. 1 (Yawn)

A surprisingly good and diverse compilation of bands from across the country. I say surprisingly because this comp. is comprised of bands who are affiliated with zines and the zine community and who knew there was such a talented groups of zinester/musicians out there> The people at Yawn Records for one. Some highlights are the crazy ska-influenced madness of Wichita's O'Phil, Dropsonic's bluesy slide guitar rock and the Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth produced Mad Happy. Solid, yo—J. Ashcroft

Guns N' Roses Tribute: Bring You to Your Knees (Law of Inertia)

With GNR's latest opus, Chinese Democracy, in its seventh year of production and close to the fourteen million dollar mark (and destined to become an industry joke for the next fifty years), a group of up and coming LA metal bands are here to tide you over until the aforementioned would-be classic gets scrapped for good. Zombie Apocalypse, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Eighteen Visions all get in on the act, and yes they do "Welcome to the Jungle," and "Sweet Child of Mine," and "Paradise City," but you're gonna hafta find out for yourself who does what and how—Axl Pose

Hello, We Are the Militia Group, Vol. 1 (The Militia Group)

Grab yourself a beer (or some soda), get a tattoo, and throw in this Militia Group comp. for some heavy emo rockers from Big Collapse, The Beautiful Mistake, Anadivine and my fave, Tora! Tora! Torrance. Most of these tracks are previously unreleased, so you know what you gotta do, soldier. NOW DO IT!—Sgt. Chomps

Take Action!, Vol. 3 (Sub City)

A gigantic butt-load of rock bands on this comp. a portion of the proceeds of which benefit the National Hotline Network (1-800-SUICIDE). Small Brown Bike, Division of Laura Lee, Rise Against, This Day Forward, and, like I said, just a butt-load more. Two discs, forty-five tunes, a good it!—Joey Germ

Die Trying (CrossCheck)

Hardcore from the Heartland. Singer Carrie Nance has got a pretty intense voice/delivery. I might step into the pit for the Vice Dolls, despite the fact that it's been about fifteen years since I've stepped into a pit and my spine would probably get snapped like a twig. Like a dry, brittle twig—P.C. Jones

Way Off the Horse (Crustacean)

I wouldn't say these guys are way off the horse, they sound more like they're recently off the horse or struggling to get off the horse, or maybe they're still on that sucker. Desperate, dirty, mean. From the photos in their press release it looks like WOTH is fronted by my Aunt Irma (if she hadn't shaved for a couple of days). I'll have to ask her about that, she doesn't live far from Madison—Irresistible Frank

"4 Time Winner" b/w "Western" (RoosterCow/Spacesuit)
Two folksy, countrified rockers from Chicago's Tom Comerford and Company. I was gonna say that they just don't write 'em like this anymore, but they do. They do—Billy Neil

"Hey Forty" b/w "Fake Rock" CD-R (Semper Lo-Fi)

Technically this is not a 7" but since it is only two songs it is being treated as such. "Hey Forty" is not a tribute to my favorite drink but rather a shout-out (or shout-at) to those approaching the big Four Oh. By the same token "Fake Rock" would have to be a shout-out to those who espouse or endorse the playing of inauth-entic rock and roll—Sherlock Homey

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