December 26, 2014
2014 seemed to start slow but there has been a good selection of stuff released this year. Below are the covers which link to the music in most cases, a more interactive approach than me just writing about them. I can wholeheartedly recommend seeing the GRANT HART documentary film ‘Every Everything’, & I’m also looking forward to seeing the Descendents ‘Filmage’. Hopefully 2015 will turn out an equally interesting lot of stuff!
September 6, 2014
March 28, 2014
December 31, 2013
Hadn’t realised there were only two postings made here this year, so to make it three here’s a last minute 2013 roundup. I’d also realised the first time I did one of these was in 2007. The blog was more active then but at this point there are 150+ posts so it has eventually become the resource I’ve always wanted it to. I’m guessing by this stage there are a number of dead or invalid download links. If there is something you wish to be reupped then unless you send an email I’ll never know. Onward to the releases from this year…
COLISEUM was a band I’d never really heard but their album ‘Sister Faith’ changed that. It’s straight up rocking punk with nod back to classic 90’s Touch & Go & Dischord. Nothing extraordinary but I’ll always have time for this level of passion & honesty in music. Same applies to the 6th TRAINDODGE full length ‘Supernatural Disasters’. The songwriting & production is first rate with less of a focus on experimentation and more on straight up catchy rockers this time. Another band who delivered a solid collection of modern rock would be VALIENT THORR with their Kyle Spence (Harvey Milk) produced ‘Our Own Masters’. Notable mentions also got to RED FANG, KYLESA, QOTSA & TOMAHAWK. As well as drumming on the new Tomahawk album John Stanier also appears on the first MARK OF CAIN recording in over a decade. This Australian band are the nearest thing you’re likely to get to ‘Aftertaste’ period Helmet, which works for me!
There were a few reissues or reformatted collections of note in 2013 that hit on the money. The UNWOUND 3xlp set released by Numero group was exceptionally well done. Their demo, first album and live recordings repackaged with extensive liner notes on the band’s early history. The TAR 2xlp singles/misc. collection was also very well packaged & hopefully brings further attention to this now seemingly overlooked early 90s band. Speaking of which the RODAN lp collection of singles/demo/Peel session saw its overdue release this year. I’d say that the above three are essential collections for both old and new fans of early 90s independent guitar music. If you are a fan of the music that goes up on this page then waste no time in picking them up. It was good to see the lesser RUDIMENTARY PENI record ‘Pope Adrian 37th…’ get it’s first issue on vinyl as well as ‘Mama’ the first album by NO MEANS NO. Southern records doing a great job with handling both releases.
It would be difficult to pick a ‘new’ band who released an overall favourite this year but OBITS, POLVO, & RED HARE all come close proving that it is possible for guys 20+ years in to still create relevant and inventive music. If it comes down to chose one standout of the year for me then RUSSIAN CIRCLES ‘Memorial’ is probably it. For an instrumental group they do a perfect job of creating and sustaining mood. The arrangements are not mathematical but textural & tastefully executed. An album I was completely unaware of until now was ‘Battlefields Forever’ by the mighty BIG BUSINESS. I’ve yet to check it out but that was my favourite album of 2013 that I’ve yet to hear! Oh shit also forgot to mention the newest VOIVOD album ‘Target Earth’ oops I thought it came out at the end of 2012! This year was very cool for seeing some great bands play live too, top ones being SAINT VITUS, NO MEANS NO, TORCHE & DEAD MEADOW. Until soonish….
EDIT: at the time of writing there were three albums released in 013 I had yet to hear that deserve mentioning. These are FEDERATION X ‘We do what we must’, EARTHLESS ‘From the ages’ and DEAD MEADOW ‘Warble womb’.
June 15, 2013
I had totally neglected posting this… I believe it surfaced a couple of years ago but I wasn’t aware of its existence until last year. Aside from maybe ‘Yank Crime’ demos (do such things exist??) this is the perfect thing to post here. From what I can gather this DRIVE LIKE JEHU demo is from 1990 & it contains 4 songs which would be recorded again (virtually unchanged) for their first album the following year. The formation of Jehu and the demise of Pitchfork seems to be in parallel. In Jehu, Rick Froberg also plays guitar alongside John Reis with the addition of a new rhythm section. The image is a magazine ad for the first album I had saved on my computer, click for DL