Saturday, June 30, 2012

QUEERWULF - 18 Songs - CD-R - 2003

   Back in 2000 in Chattanooga, my roommate, Ryan asked if I wanted to play drums for a recording project that he was working on with my future roommate (Ed), our neighbor (Anthony) and our friend, Josh. For some reason, I declined and Ryan just decided to play the drums himself. The end result of that project was the first 4 or 5 songs by the band, QUEERWULF and when I heard it, I was impressed. The band was too good to just stop right there, so they kept going...for a few more years. The bulk of those first songs ended up being on their first 7", "Cockroach City", put out by This Here Records in Chattanooga.
   Their singer, Josh always seemed to put everything he had into the live performance of any band he was in. In his teenage punk band, CAPITAL SICKNESS, he would fuck up playing bass because he was singing so hard with his eyes closed...and they ruled. With QUEERWULF, he didn't have any instruments to hold him back, so he was allowed to completely lose it while the rest of the band blazed through the songs behind him, which often resulted in broken glass, bloody microphones and/or a destroyed basement. Nothing about his lyrics or performance was an act though. Josh kinda lived this life 24 hours a day. Once, Josh walked out of his job and came to my house to get drunk. We rode bikes all over the city, drinking whiskey and spraypainting shit. I don't really remember the end of the night, but when I woke up on the floor in my room the next morning, Josh was a few feet away and we were surrounded by shards of broken glass. My roommate later told me that he came up to my attic room really late to find the two of us singing along to PETER STUBB as loud as we could while smashing beer bottles against the wall.
   Also, when he sang about pissing on someone's grave and smiling, I could picture it vividly.
Blurry pic of the first QUEERWULF show at Rear Entry.

   The rest of the band were no slouches either. As the band progressed, it seemed like were trying to make the music more and more intense as the years rolled by. Twists and turns in their songwriting became more unexpected and calculatingly precise. Sometimes, I felt like seeing them play was probably something close to what it felt like to see BLACK FLAG during the Damaged years (fortunately, QUEERWULF did not go further than that and start doing spoken word/instrumental albums...but I bet it would have been interesting). 
   The later years of QUEERWULF coincided with my departure from Chattanooga, so I don't know what happened to them or why they broke up, but I can assume that a band with that much intensity can only blow up at some point. The best bands are always the most volatile and difficult to maintain.

This CD-R collects their first 2 7" records and their side of the split LP with SHARP KNIFE. You can still get their posthumously released LP from Do Ya Hear We.

   Members of the band went on to be in TRAILER PARK HEROESASSHOLE PARADEGHETTOBIRDADD/CONETIMERSHIDDEN SPOTS and many, many more.
This CD is from the mixed up files of Anandi Wonder.

Monday, June 25, 2012

ADULTS - "Vol. II" - Tape - 2011

   Last year, my friend Robert asked me if I could help him do demo reviews at MRR because the amount of demos that roll through their P.O. box every month is staggering. He was writing 20+ reviews for the magazine every month and still had piles and piles left over. I agreed and decided that I would almost exclusively review terrible looking CD-R demos; the horror-punk, the bar rock, the folk punk and the bedroom projects of young teenage couples who did bad renditions of radio hits. Some of these bands send multi-page promotional hype for their band and I'm treated to some of the most hilarious (or banal) bullshit I've ever read. My recycling bin is stuffed to the gills with this garbage. It's not all bad though. Sometimes, I come across insanely inspired punk, brutal hardcore or weird, nutso experimentation. It makes this thankless job totally worth it every time.
   Most of the time, I pass over the tapes in the demo box until all of the CD-R's are gone, but this tape by ADULTS was lingering around in the bottom and something in my brain said that I should take it. There was no note, no fucking promo sheets....just this tape and a mailing address. When I put it on, I was instantly hooked. They play straightforward punk with hooks to spare, like if the DICKIES lost their keyboard player and never even thought about playing slow songs. What if THE HEARTBREAKERS just shot speed exclusively and lived in a punk house in Oakland? They might sound like ADULTS. This is the funny thing about living in the Bay Area. This band lives a short 10-12 miles from my house, yet I had never seen them or heard of them even though I go to punk shows all the time. It's too hard to see every good band in this area. It's impossible, actually. I still haven't seen this band, but I plan on doing so in the near future. Until then, I will be blasting this tape in my room. You should too.

  Download ADULTS
Re-uploaded 2014

Saturday, June 23, 2012

CISMA - "Imagenes Podridas" - Tape - 2012

   I just returned from a mind-blowing European tour with my band. Like all tours, there was a string of not-so-great shows. You see, I play punk music and I have devoted my life to punk, for better or worse. Oddly, I have high expectations. I want other punks involved in this scene to play music like they're gonna die afterwards. I want punk writers to speak from their heart with guts to spare. I want punks to look fuckin' punk, fucked up but approachable. This doesn't necessarily mean mohawks and bullet means you've lived the life you've been given with nothing holding you back. I want punks to play music like they mean it and I want to feel the intensity coming from them. That being said, we had just played a few shows with bands that seemed like they might be happier at their day job and I was questioning what exactly we were doing here in this foreign country. Then, we played with MUNDO MUERTO from L.A. As soon as they struck their first note, I was instantly reminded of why I love punk. They played with passion and a fierce energy that was infectious.
   After their set, I looked at what they had for sale and saw this tape by CISMA. Their roadie, Marta explained that they were a fuckin' hardcore band from the Canary Islands! I was all like "What?" and she was all like "Yeah!" and then I was all like, "Dude, I gotta get this!" Seriously though, I figured that the punks in MUNDO MUERTO wouldn't be peddling some trash along with them on their tour and I was right.
   CISMA plays raw, energetic hardcore that makes me wanna smash my head through a wall. They have a fucked up, noisy guitar sound that rules. Everything about them screams "Punk!" in a way that makes my heart sing. Just fuckin' download it.

If you'd like to order a tape for yourself, get in touch with them here:

   Don't get me wrong about the intentions of the European punks. The squats we played, the people we met and the way people get shit done over there was inspiring to say the very least. If you can keep an anarchist squat open and vital for 40 years, you're definitely doing something right. If you can manage to set up a show for some dumb US band, feed them, give them a comfy place to stay, give them more alcohol than they could ever want and still manage to do 40 other things in the same night, you're doing a lot better than most people in my country. I can't thank the punks in Europe enough for their hospitality and organization. All I'm saying is that we had a rough 4-5 days there and MUNDO MUERTO and Bremen, Germany put us back on track. Thanks.