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Record Reviews

Published in Reglar Wiglar #8, 1997

Our reviewers have been asked to be a little more positive with their reviews. They have been asked to be a little less stingy with their compliments, a little more conservative with their smart-ass putdowns. Ladies and gentleman, they have been asked. What I should have done is asked the waste paper basket (that never get emptied) 'cause I would have gotten the same response. I'm sorry.

Captain of Starship Earth (RoosterCow)

This album is an instant classic. How could you go wrong with such an all-star line-up? John Vargas (ex-Pole Smoker, ex-Jinkies, ex-Faith Destroyers) on drums, Tim Jones (ex-MotherScratcher, ex-Instant Prehistoric Animals, ex-Waterhead, ex-Lunch Bucket Killers) on keyboards, Joy Reynolds (ex-Vag Girls, ex-Kitten Farm, ex-School Jones, ex-Rodeo Mole, ex-Waterhead) on bass; Cecil J. Basken (ex-Moment of Silence, ex-Lunch Bucket Killers, ex-Pill Poppers, ex-Pole Smoker, ex-Wine Kings, ex-Thirst Mitten, ex-Cords, ex-Rodeo Mole) on guitar; Bob Dashund (ex-Cereal Eaters, ex-School Jones, ex-X Marks the Spot, ex-Turkey Neck, ex-Sadistic Simplistics, ex-Thirst Mitten, ex-Wild Kids, ex-Experiments) on guitar and Roger Freid on vocals.

The album was recorded at Escape Studios where the likes of Tommy "T-Bone" Kerch, Sonny "Sunny" Jackson, "Wild" Bill Jenkins, Peabody McFields and Hubert "Papa Bear" Collins have all recorded. The album was recorded by L. Roberts (The Bitch, Resolution, Poppers, One Hit, Jody Baer, Sand Castles) It was mixed by Tony Barfly Pettigout (Trendsetters, Before the Revolution, The Drama Means, Mind Melt, The Abominations, Abomination Machine) If you've read this far, hopefully you've got enough of your wits about you to realize that the above review is complete and utter nonsense, a farce. There's really no point in continuing on with the gag now that we're both on the "same page," so to speak. Comprende?—Jayne Wayne

Super Natural (Roadrunner)

"...a splendid nifty popcore blend of cheerily cynical Brit melodies and spunky Yank guitars."--NME. I'm going to lead with that quote from New Musical Express just in case I start rambling and don't actually mention the Bennet record again, which could happen. I don't know, on the one hand, it seems like every band blowing out of Britain these days is just trying to out "pop" each other. I mean where does the buggery end? If you like Oasis and you dig Supergrass and pop music and all that, then hey, you just might think Bennet are the cat's jammie jams or a really good rip-off.. I don't know...there's supposed to be some tie-in to American type grunge music too, but fuck, it's been about five years since grunge has been around and my punk ass still hasn't figured out what it is. Bennet, Supernatural, you might like it—Joey "Slack MF" Germ

Sleepwalk (lfm)

Oh my god! Not only did they find Bigfoot, but they let him make a record. Well, no of course they didn't, because then the Loch Ness Monster would be beggin' for studio time with whatever the hell is in Hangar 13 and wouldn't that just be a hootenany? Bigfoot is a band from Columbus, home of the lfm label and a man named Lizard McGee, so be careful. Lfm stands for lo-fi music and well, that's what Sleepwalk is and it ain't half bad at that. David Holms seems to be the principal writer of the group, writing slow jangly introspective little numbers and more mid-tempo foot tappers as well. Drummer Brad Swinarski and guitarist Jeff Clowdus contribute a song each as well, which adds a touch of diversity to the Sleepwalk.

Record reviewer's Album Title Metaphor Cop-Out: Sleepwalk sounds like what it would be like if you were walking in your sleep listening to music—Jayne Wayne

Everything Sucks (Epitaph)

How true, how true. Everything does indeed suck. I personally don't think the Descendents are capable of making a bad record. These fuckers are as tight as they ever was. Unlike most old school punk bands who've reformed in the 90s looking to serve up a hearty helping of the punk rock pie (perhaps deservedly) these guys in their old age didn't learn how to suck. Hell, I'm 64 and I'm still whuppin' ass ass—Muggsy "Never Went to College" McMurphy



Hi, We're the Fairlanes 7" EP (Suburban Home)

Hi, I'm Joey Germ and I'll be reviewing your record and that's not necessarily a good thing if you are at all sensitive to bad reviews. Just kiddin' fellahs (true as it may be). The Fairlanes. Pop punk from Colorado. Happy pop punk. Kids with real swell attitudes. Songs about girls, love, and bein' in love with girls. Sugary pop punk. Archies meet the Ramones in the Rockies. Ooow wa oooo WA oooo WA a WA ooo. You fuckers got off easy. Don't send me anymore of your records and nobody gets hurt—Joey "Don't Sing Me Love Songs" Germ

Satan Superman/Dot Buster (Sonic Swirl)

Wow. Sonic Swirl indeed. Distorted, scratchy, howling, hissing static feedback. Satanic both stated and implied. Can't miss with Muggsy. Muggsy likes all of thee above—Muggsy "The Great Brain" McMurphy

Giant Robot Rock 'n' Roll (Won't Go Flat)

Giant Robot Rock 'n' Roll! Giant Robot Rock 'n' Roll! Giant Robot Rock 'n' Roll! Yeah! Creepy Porno Guy! Creepy Porno Guy! Creepy Porno Guy! Chic-A-Go-Go! Chic-A-Go-Go! Chic-A-Go-Go! Whoo hoo! Unmask yourselves Goblins and have at thee. I am not afraid of your "rock music"!—P.C. Jones

Good Puss Also Comes Alive (no label)

Eight songs recorded live in Chicago at a party in some basement somewhere, Sounds like it could be in the Uptown area but I really couldn't possibly know that for sure. Kansas City's Good Puss give us a couple of covers, "Katchaturian" (or the pie spinning song as it is referred to by someone), "Woman" (sung with as much passion and conviction as if Helen Reddy herself crashed the party), and the show-ending, crowd-pleasing, "Mr. Roboto" by the immortal rock band Styx (a fabled river in Greek mythology which separated the land of the living and the land of the dead, very cool). Good Puss fill out the rest of the set with five original tunes of frustration, lost love, and life affirming ballads (Bit 'O Honey is a standout tune) or maybe I just made that up. I don't know. They have a horn section. Yes, I Joseph Titanium Germ, was present at this party. I don't remember any bands playing, but a lot of linen was changed in the OFF-White House the evening of this show, you can be sure—JTG

"$2800" b/w "Jack Johnson" 7" (Beluga)

I agree, 2800 bucks is a lot of money. I bet it could buy a lot of hooch for these guys. I don't know if it would make them sound any sloppier. As it stands these guys sound like they are teetering on the brink of sobriety. Seven inches of full on half-assed mirth. Jack Johnson? What the fu--are these lyrics in French? Dieu vous garde—Joey "Le fu-fu" Germ

Still Suffering (Tooth & Nail)

You're still suffering? I just sat through your wholeCD, buddy! Klank is as Klank does, I guess we are to believe. Klank is Daren "Klank" Diolosa. He signed his record contract in his own blood (this is true, it says so in his bio). Oh you bet I'd be scared if I was Klank's label. Imagine the guy who gave him the contract when Klank pulls out a knife and ceremoniously slices his hand open to draw the blood-ink from him veins. "A excuse me, Mr. Klank, deals with the Devil are done down the hall in the Marketing Department"—Joey Germ

Antichrist Superstar (Nothing)

Marilyn Manson? I see people walkin' around Uptown (tryin' their best to look like they got their shit together) that look scarier than these guys. You're all freaks! Go back to bed—P.C. Jones



Life in General (Tooth & Nail)

Anyone remember when punk rock records (CDs) didn't come with 16 page, glossy, full color, lyric booklets? Neither do I. Oi vey! Some of the most uncreative cover art I've seen since (fill in the blank--make your own smart-ass comment, I'm tired). The music: tight, very produced punk rock. Buy it, kids. It'll shave the hair right off your heads—Joey "Tired, Tired, Tired" Germ

7/10 Split Split 7" (Soda Jerk)

The highest scoring band got the a-side. JJ of the Nobodys had the highest game with a 165... ahh, just for the record there fellahs, I bowl a 166 on a bad night. At any rate, we got more Colorado punk rock here courtesy of the folks at Soda Jerk Records. Lucky for them I snagged this 7 inch before Germ could get his greezy hands on it and am therefore probably giving both bands on this split a break. Oh yeah, I almost forgot about the music. There's music on this record. There, I'm done—Muggsy "Kingpin" McMurphy

Ride of the Lawless (Skratchy)

New Wave of Artist Owned Labels! Skrathcy Records! I'm just gonna go ahead and misspell Skratchy's name until they do just a little bit of research and spell Reglar Wiglar right when they send me their mediocre promos. Actually, I don't give a shit how they spell Reglar Wiglar. As long as my name is spelled right on my paycheck I got no beef with nobody. The publisher of this magazine insisted that I spell it this way. He feels slighted, unimportant, and under appreciated. Christ! I don't know, the guys got some issues to deal with. Nuthin' to do with me. I just say "Yass Boss" and do what I'm told. I hate myself. Anyway, this CD has got kind of a backwater countrified bare bones sound, a watered down Flesheaters kind of flava'. Their press release thingy starts off "imagine the sound of Jon Spencer meeting the cramps and Gun Club in a swamp and having his ass kicked... that's the sound of Phoenix Thunderstone... Of course, if you are a fan of Jon Spencer, The Cramps or Gun Club then that statement is just an insulting, and very ridiculous exaggeration that somebody who works for Scrachee wishes were true but if that sounds like something you'd be into then...go buy it. Once again, I have done my job! Thank you—Muggsy McMurphy

Tense 7" (Dubious Honor)

I don't know what kind of "thing" is singing on this record, but let me tell yah somethin', it definitely is a "thing" 'cause it ain't human. Humans do not sing like this, and I use the term "sing" quite loosely. This is metal, grindcore, sick, twisted. Sounds good on 33 or 45 rpm. You just can't tell. You're just too scared. If you played this while someone slept, you know, pumped it into their subconscious, like how people listen to those foreign language tapes to learn whilst they slumber, anyway, if you did that to somebody with this record, you could possibly destroy that person. Know what I mean? Are we connecting?—P.C. Jones

Cry (Daemon)

Hey-hey-hey, Hello, hello-hello. Could someone turn down the reverb-verb-verb-verb? This records sounds like it was recorded in a big, empty warehouse somewhere right out in the middle of nowhere. It's despondent, hopeless, languish-laden Languish-laden? I'll let the Rock-a-Teens say it' 'cause they said it best when they said: "With this record (Cry) we continue our reverb soaked shame spiral into the basement of bummer rock." Yep, they sure do. I like the basement, I used to live there, sometimes I still live there. Boo hoo—T-Bone

The Little Death (Epitaph)

Epitapherific! No, but stheriously, when the cover of your CD is a replica of a great classic of 20th century literature (Catcher in the Rye) your CD had better rock my ass. Yes, very clever cover, very clever indeed. They think their band's so nice they named it twice, but Muggsy thinks just one Ruth would suffice. A lot of time spent on this band, you know, recording 'em, puttin' out their record, mailin' the record to fanzines and then I go and say, "Whew, what stinks?" That's gotta be frustrating, but hey, I had to listen to it—Muggsy "Feel My Pain" McMurphy

"Dry" b/w "Kick Back Relax" 7" (Turnbuckle)

In the same vein as a Bailter Space, has a Spaceman 3 kind of groove. Mellow, melodic, trance inducing, "toe gazing" some might proffer. Not bad, not bad at all. I realize "not bad, not bad at all" is not the kind of review that you want to go pasting into your press kit, but I'm not the kind of music critic who's very good at, you know, coming up with different words to say about something--articulate, yeah, that's the word articulate. I'm not very articulate—Malcolm Tent

"Part-timer" b/w "Casual Acquaintance" 7" (Turnbuckle)

Same review as above. Sorry, we found out that Muggsy has been using the thesaurus to roll joints on. He thought it was an anthology of Greek mythology. Not that he was going to try and read it, he just though it would be cool to roll joints on. That is kind of cool, if it would have been an anthology of Greek mythology and not a "word book" like Muggsy calls it—Malcolm Tent

"Devil Made Us Do It" b/w "1996" (Off-white)

Compelling lyrics, griping guitar work, competent drumming, pounding bass makes this the best record of all time... you know the Devil made me write that—P.C. Jones

"Shoe Box" b/w "Ribcage" (Paris Scope)

Thick skin. Well that thick skin is gonna come in handy, boys, 'cause let me tell yah what I think of your record: It stinks! No seriously, it does—Jayne Wayne

"Which Way to Willabee" b/w "Gaze" "God is Big" (Won't Go Flat)

Ting don't make a sound like 'ting'. It ain't no ting. This ain't no onomatopoeia. Hey, I'm no onomatologist, but don't make me get onomastic on your ass, 'cause I was just makin' a point. Ting is bare bones, unsteady, unsure, the song "Gaze" reminds this reviewer of early Gang of Four with Andy Gill takin' a breather. Sparse, minimal, kinda cool actually—Joey "Ting" Germ

Flap Jack (Mutagenic)

This is from way up north there in Minneapolis. Minneapolis had them quite a scene a few years back what with Husker Du and The Mats and Soul Asylum and what not. These fellows seem to have borrowed or been influenced heavily by earlier Soul Asylum records. Spastic kinda "whoa, easy boy" rock. You know, if I could just take a time out here and ask the question: "Whatever happened to fucking Soul Asylum, huh?" Maybe most of you saw the cheese on the horizon and never bought into their rock in the first place. "Frustrated Incorporated"? Tragic. Anyway UJM are at the point in their career where their just freak rockin' it. Flapjack is just a fallin' down, screamin', slappin' your drum/bass/guitar until it hurts, Midwest style record. The Midwest, where flannel is not a lifestyle choice, it's in your DNA mutha' fucka—Slim Jim

"We're the Men in Black" b/w "Tumor" 7" (DubiousHonor)

Legendary Punk Rock Conspiracy Theorists, The Vampire Lesbos have the political slant of Jello Biafra with an old school punk rock sound. They're out to keep you informed about the evils of your government and what their trying to hide, the evils of working for the corporate machine and anything else you've forgotten to think about since you started getting into the new Sponge CD. "Open your eyes, man!"—Joey "I Ain't Workin' for the Man" Germ

4-song spit 7" (Throw Rug)

You know the publishers figured maybe one of the reasons I write such negative reviews is because my chair is so damn hard on my ass. I'll be goddamned if they didn't go out and buy me a nice big 'ol comfy little office chair on wheels. I'm going mobile. Now when I'm writing a review and get overwhelmed by thirst, I can just blast off from my desk, sail into the employee lounge, grab a cold one out of the fridge and be back in enough time to throw an s.u.c.k.s onto the word processor. The office stooges say that my productivity has jumped up 10% in the last three months alone. They say my reviews have become longer, more insightful and a downright pleasure to read. Hey, that reminds me, I'm doing a review right now! Check it out: "Throw Rug has put together an altogether, not unpleasant solid seven inch from two bands I know altogether nothing about. It's kind of a mid-tempo rock affair really, really (hold on a second will yah, I'll be right back--Whoah, ran over Jayne Wayne's foot who was also on the way to the fridge, which between you and me, she should be doin' a lot less often)--sucks. Ha! Just kidding—Muggsy "No Longer the Hard-Ass" McMurphy

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