FUNGALPUNK - CD REVIEWS Page 1
 
 

HEADSTICKS - UNDERDOGS LIVE

Headsticks are a band I have spouted about for quite a while now and they are bearing fruit from their tonal tree of promise in great abundance.  From the early seeds has come a verdant spread of productive noise and as a curious cacophonic naturalist you may understand that I am more than a little happy to be found mooching in their satisfying trembling acoustic undergrowth.  Words that spring to mind to describe this folked punkoid unit are 'cultured', 'erudite' and 'insightful' and when these elements are inter-planted with a political awareness, a social conscience and a tonal craftwork to create sweet spreading fragrances what you get is an end glory to wallow in.  Don't underestimate my desire to stay objective though and maintain an honesty that must stand firm in the face of swinging favour - I cannot be corrupted as it would certainly be unfair on all concerned.  My assessing secateurs are ready but so is my bag of appreciative fertilizer - let us spread some muck.

Seeing I have reviewed all of these tracks before allows me the freedom of being more caressing with my attention rather than give a needless massage of the rhythmic root system - so that is how I will dabble ya fuckers.  Inwards we go, the first classic comes and 'World Away' is honest, semi-gothic, sub-documentary and has an inner anguish that is appalled, disturbed and disgusted.  The crispness and liquidity is a wondrous copulation and gives birth to a fascinating lilt I am certainly magnetised by.  The vocals are real, thirsty and charming and inject further animation into a very kicking composite. The harmonica inclusion add poignancy, the final whip up exhibits the inner agitation and this, as expected, is an opening masterstroke.

With consummate and gratifying ease the first accomplishment is creamed over and outshone by a song I personally consider as the bands finest moment to date, namely 'Paper Flowers'.  This emotive ocean of swelling sensations heaves with gut-intention and is given muscularity and sincerity via a sagacious instinct and very professional application this scurfy underdog is certainly not polluted by. It is a welcome breath of sonic sea air that ruffles the attentive feathers and like any self-respecting punk rock gull of pecking passion I take to my wanked wings and soar with joy.  I am utterly convinced that the thermals radiated will keep me aloft for many a year and I hope the flock increases as time progresses and we all enjoy this thoughtful song as one.  'Cold, Grey English Skies' is a slow pondering construction that rises on bassed blessings before colouring up with cared for string persuasions and regulated stick work.  The oral orifice hungers and duly delivers and from verse to chorus we are taken on an observing journey that sees people in dire situations and a world slipping into self-obsession and neglect.  It is a thought-provoking piece and certainly flows with an assured belief - excellent stuff.

Upping the ante in terms of persuasion and 'Fanatics' is a frantic repeat shove that alters tempo and gets alternative juices flowing form somewhat neglected crevices.  The call to defy is resonated deep in the soul and the perpetual motion of the tumbling tune crescendos within a simplistic chorus demand that nails home the intentions.  The fiery roars from the lead are admirable, the flicker of the flames throughout keep things singed and I for one have my boiler stoked (oh aye), my orifice of passion poked (hot damn) and am moving with direction.  Lovely and hey man, what madness in the mouthwork - just the way it should be!

'What Do You Want' begins with the frontman hollering for a reaction and some genuine arse activity.  Tis all well and good being roused at a gig but take these rally calls forth and make sure you use your carcass to make a fuckin' difference you distracted and suppressed bastards - think on. The government loves it when you are happy with your gadgets and weekend blow-outs - you are never going to be a threat. This is an invigorating and energetic thrust to keep you on your tootsies and get you away from the systematic conformity and hopefully kicking some arse and ruffling a few controlling feathers,  Facebook exposes the idle heads, the ones in it for 'an experience', 'a laugh' and some social time.  Remember kids, a T-shirt and some hot talk changes nothing - do your fuckin' bit and when you are doing it play this classic - LOUD!

'Mississippi Burning' is masterminded erudition that is articulated through substantial care and pre-pondered excellence all portrayed on this 'live' basis with an expertise that grants the eavesdropper secure satisfaction.  The process creates a fathomable depth that increases the longevity and intrigue factors whilst not marring the ease of the listening experience.  The lucidity of all components and the bold embrace of the intonation is precise and yes, before you ask, I am smitten once more.  'Flatline Town' is a stunner, perhaps the first song that really snagged me onto this superb band and the blameworthy nugget that has made me a fan ever since.  It begins with jerky attraction, shifts and side-winds with fidgety brilliance before swinging into that capturing sub-chorus that has stuck in my bonse like a fly in a web - ooh what a choice do.  For me this song, that I have played many times over several years, stands the test of time and I have no doubts in 10, 20, 30 years this will still be as relevant as ever - says a lot don't ya think.

Cripes, the last 3 and 'Go, Move, Shift' is an insistent song that shoves with spirit and weaves this way, that way and any way you so desire.  The bass upholds the happening, encourages with simple punctuations and lets the rest of the players ping and ring out with zested accents that will re-activate anyone not paying full attention.  Not a bad do at all but the weakest so far and followed by a song I have been unsure of in the past but one which I am finding is a slow burner.  Like a rhythmic Boa Constrictor on grass this number slowly squeezes and gradually forces out an animated reaction akin to positivity - by heck, I must be weakening.  The greater part of the song is a slow syrup of goodness and the only fault I uncover (to my personal taste that is) is the final jammed out tail down.  It seems to mar a progressive song and for me the first slab of sound deserves something better than this jazz about finish.  I am getting to grips with this one though although as it appears, I am not thoroughly taken.

We send the CD to the final silence with the grandiosity of 'You're Killing Me America', a sure-fire stunner that has served the band well thus far and will continue to do so as old and new fans enjoy the generous wealth of worthwhile spillage.  The song is cultured, the delivery equal to the written down task and I leave you with one message as how to take this effort and all the bloody rest - respect the artistry, enjoy and support - how easy is that!

Headsticks are proven quality, continue to rise and along the way I will be doing my subtle bit.  Good on ya fellas - you bring me sunshine and for that I am grateful.  Now all you readers - go catch some rhythmic rays!

   

SPUNK VOLCANO & THE ERUPTIONS - NOT WIRED UP RIGHT

Oh man wank me hard, rub it good now, oh yeah make that dome glow and gimme sensations baby, sensations spiked, sonic and slippery. That is all I ask of this band, a thrusting unit cracking off cacophonic wanks with increasing repetition and rather than self-molest I suggest they share the deviancy.  Jimmy Saville did his bit, Stuart Hall tried his best and I am sure there is enough pedigree here to dabble with the dirty regions before the ensuing court case and resultant prison sentence duly arrive.  All I ask for is penis pleasure and a vibrating ring to while away the hours - is it too fuckin' much to request?

The sonic circle is extracted (oooh feels good), whizzed up and rotated.  The assessing kecks are tugged around the arthritic ankles and with a pimpled arse on show and throbbing gonads twitching I plunge into the sex pillows of critique and tackle the first offering.  'Not Wired Up Right' is quick, without fuss and fuckin' happening.  Like a brief hump with a legless Sikh down the back alley of disease this one happens, is over in the twinkling of a bloodshot eye and leaves one bewildered but...satisfied.  As movement is made the turban of tonality is unwound and tied around the nobbing nuts of attention resulting is a swift climax of positive seeds.  I repeat the performance (much to the chagrin of my limbless lover) and feel the fuzz, admire the swift holler outs and react to the quick thrash of the toned carcass - lovely.  The used hanky waved is of success - think on, I am also incorrect in the head!

'Nobhead' beautifully blossoms from the underpants of silence and flashes the dome of discordance in the most blatant and vulgar way possible.  As long term voyeurs of volumed noise we should know better but alas we don't and we are drawn closer to examine the quivering shaft of sound and perhaps get duly impregnated by - ooh me duffel-bag!  I take the plunge (can you hear the rectal muscles tearing) and get screwed by a finely delivered up-heave of humping goodness that is riffed hard, melodic and right in yer mush.  Prick pulsing punk - simple hey and one to chant along to whilst pondering the problem of the ignoramus.  'Shutdown' generates, escalates...operates.  A tuneful yarn of the systematic beating many are freely submitting to even in this scene of spikes and studs - silly cunts.  The pressure is subtly applied, the warning lights come via oral hollers but will you take heed?  One day you think you are free, the next realisation tells you that all along you have been kept fat on the fodder of head-fucking routine.  In, out, switch off - repeat ad infinitum - die!  A sweet change this from the more boorish blow-outs!

Semi-squelched wires weave, skin whacks ascend, hollers come.  'Gatecrash' is more obvious manoeuvring typical of things semen-soaked. One for those pissed-up or with an IQ similar to that of an anally obsessed earwig (deviant buggers) this will be rocked along with and enjoyed for sure.  Those who like to disturb the peace, shit in a bed or take a leak in a cupboard will all love this powerchunk and, being of a scatological leaning myself, I play whilst curling one down in the bread bin during a neighbour’s house-warming party - tis gotta be done tha' knows!  'Fuck This For A Game Of Soldiers' bass grouses, really gets the juices flowing before skins are scattered and the guitar dive bombs into the threat pit.  The steady impression of the song is gently pushed homeward and my noggin absorbs over several plays before making an end judgement.  I dip my sticky fingers back in the sweetmeat of the pulsing pie (wow man what a sexpot) and come to the decision this is better than I idiotically presumed.  It rises well, lasts the course and leaves an aftertaste most satisfactory - a bit like the love sausage of Larry Grayson - ooh shut that anal door.

'Your The Bastard' is a careening car of noise driven by a savage-slanted nutjob hell-bent on mowing down any deadhead pedestrians or semi-interested crossers of the rhythmic road.  Accelerator down, eyes glaring straight ahead and targets found - locate, direct, flatten!  I need not dwell - the band have two choices, lock themselves in a dark room and have a ruddy good wank...or...carry on as they do - both options are liable to end up messy.  A change in style next, a more spacious blow-off with certain elements sneaking in from outside distractions and knitting themselves into the blend of  'Out Of The Blue'.  I have examined this one both internally, externally and hey...even rectally, and I am coming out with a dispassionate verdict that is neither here nor there.  I float on the waters of indifference and although the waves generated are tidy and concentrically accurate I am unbuoyed and sink alone in my own self-frothed effluence - it happens. 'Dementia Hurricane' is similar in part to its preceding neighbour and here has a lazy delivery that is no doubt intent on grabbing the idlers in the pit and encouraging them to unite with the chorus repetitions.  This isn't a bad song but far from a nipple-nobbing perker and I listen, applaud but primarily remain untitivated.  I am being overly picky here as the band raise themselves to levels so ruddy hard to maintain but hey,  I can only expose my feelings and not what you want me to feel. I do like the construction (both lyrically and musically) of these latter 2 efforts but am happy to nail them as the low slung testes in the bag of noisy nuts.

'Teeth' is a beautiful blitz that is wound up to fuckery and after giving numerous warnings is now ready to slam out some clickers with a good old well fuelled fist.  Some people know no other reasoning and to deliver a knuckle butty to the postal address of Hampstead Heath is sadly the only way to go.  Spunk roars, the electric excitement comes in huge waves and with much tension rising forth in the guts of all areas the final conviction to full tilt is finally realised.  A grand moment!  The follow-up thwack is equally glorious with 'Knuckledusters And Scars' a meat-filled affair that pounds away and punches out a solid response of positive passion.  The riffs ram home their point from the off, the drum skins are slapped to buggery and when the gob roars into the melee we have a fracas to be ignited by.  My pet dog gets a kick up the arse, the goldfish gets headbutted, the neighbour is rewarded with a good fist in the face and the local ice cream man issued with a beating of a lifetime - and all because noise such as this turns me on!

We fold the pack of sonic booms with the confessing explanation (or excuse if you ask me) entitled 'Purely Medicinal'.  A song that gives us all good reason to carry on boozing and pickling the carcass for as long as it is upright (and why not).  This cultured dealing is well-timed and kept as a compact cutlet to have you thinking - thinking what the future holds and where the hell this band may end up - no bad thing.  A quite surprising bonus!

The Volcanoes of Spunk erupt in many ways - sometimes coarse, sometimes simplistic, sometimes bare-arsed blatant.  Along the way inner chords are struck that feed on shizzle such as this and for that we need not apologise.  It is all noise don't ya know and this is decent fodder that I am more than happy to wallow in.  A pig in shit I be, oink fuckin' oink now get this and kiss my pork whiffing rear you cunts!

   

TITANS FALL HARDER - EVOLVE

Awash with sonic bombardments I fight for survival and run myself ragged amid the lightning storm.  From south-eastern France come this latest crew who upchuck 6 tracks of tempestuous noise described on their Facefuck page as extreme metal.  What comes is a rib-jarring combination of theatrical film score fuckology and power hungry drama shot through with accents of majestic ill-will.  This is for the dark-side deviant, the crooked cacophoneer who has slipped from the hell-kissed cunt with no hope of a life other than one bathed in sable suffering.  The fuckers love it.

We begin with an 'Emergence', an elaborate scene setter that slowly rises from the dirty ashes and uses nothing more than a monochrome metallic palette to daub a foundation on which to splatterfuck.  Giger wanks Mephistopheles, Mephistopheles wanks Giger and ultimately both ascend and plummet to graven depths where dissonance of death dances are a sickening must.  The panoramic backdrop falls with the molesting deviants, a nuclear emptiness is revealed from the emptied seeds across which come legions of cog-turning demons, steel-coated, malevolent and all in tune to a mechanoid beat.  An intense ant-like army are juddering and spluttering to a horror-goth blast delivered from the overseeing puppetmasters with computerised accuracy and intense focus.  'Alive' is a screaming bitch that wants, needs and...may I suggest...gets.  The warfare used by the advancing insectoids is unremitting, of laser light thermality and leaves me...scorched.  I re-invest my time and go back through the drama several times over...I class this as blitzkrieg hardcore of orchestrated excellence.  

'Ignite The Core' is trigger-switched into another damned and decadent sacrifice that sees nothing less than 1000 degree heat burn away resistance and make any attempts at critique...futile.  The larynx is blazed and blooded, the strings manipulated with devilish fervour whilst all the while the sticks make a spasmodic seizure of rhythm that all areas get infected by. When soaring and roaring I become dragged along, when pulverising and passionate I am taken but, those odd moments when impetus is hindered, irritates. This is hefty cacophonic kit though and all niggles are borne of personal taste and not caused by a leakage of musical expertise.  Digitise demonisation - prepare to blaspheme and have your soul blackened.

And breathe, and relax and...prepare!

Next and 'Beyond Self' is straight in, perpetual motion of a paradoxically spurtive kind that splutters forth spunk spirit of heavy bleakness and intoxicated perniciousness.  Damned and direct the whole computerised tumult is tonally multifarious and happening on many levels as to make for one severe head-rape.  The glow is blinding, the intricacy more convoluted than dreamed of and I enter and come out the other side a very tired, titillated but twisted man.  What the fuck just happened?  'The Omniscient' is of the same breed, is wired up in the same manner and feeds out an electro-offal to turn many unprepared guts.  Functioning at a sparked and narked manner to violate and masturbate this is counterpunching craziness that copulates many frictional aspects and Tasers them into fidget-fuck activity.  The creators are evil Frankensteinian offspring involving themselves in unhallowed experiments that can only end in episodes of darkened diabolic extremes.  I am thrown all ways, strangulated by another sonic monster on a rampage - once more I am beaten!

The last two and 'Extinction Level Event' and 'Erased' with the former sticking to the infernally fiendish avenues of exploration and nailing home hardcore investments without thought of ultimate result.  It exudes classical qualities and a relentless stubbornness to uphold the blazing rag of rhythm and is only quelled by the latter song which is merely a 54 second respite that rounds off a mighty listening experience in sedate style - there is nothing easily predicted here (thank goodness).  I think deeply, I acknowledge the quality, I move forth to finalise matters.

This is soundtrack sonica with hardcore blood gushing fast and all players totally immersed.  It isn't what I would listen to on a daily basis but is a style of sound I can take now and again and applaud the mastery.  Heavy duty stuff and not for those of a nervous disposition or with fragile genitalia - be warned, hitch your undies up and take in small amounts - the option of an overdose would be drastic.

   

HOSPITAL FOOD - OBLIVION

By heck Hospital Food are still going, still keeping it mighty real and are on, what one would consider, a ruddy decent roll.  I have done bits and bobs with this lot since the early days and am more than a little chuffed that they are still chugging away.  An honest band, as down to earth as you can wish and clobbering out the vibrology for the love of it and to ease the inner demons that inrsist the punk rivers of noise must flow.  I have reviewed a few efforts by this bunch, today I take their name literally and avoid an off the plate tangent.

I recline in bed, awaiting a post HF operation during which I hope to be blown away and have my knackers frazzled.  Prior to the carve up I am presented with some vibrating victuals.  The slop of cacophonic cuisine in which I am requested to delve goes under the name of 'DIY Punk Band', an honest song that is borne from the kitchen sink of reality, warmed up on the oven of the trier and given herbs of resolute fervour. The blend here is cleaner and more progressive than what I expected and numerous spins are needed to acclimatise to the new found production.  The band are thinking on their musical feet but staying true to their roots and shouting the cause of the DIY gift we have been ultimately blessed with.  Extra trimmings of ornamentation are combined with a growing grit and taking into consideration all elements I gotta say this is a sweet and sturdy opener.  'Bully Boy' is street-wise and roughly cobble-stoned with a forthright kick-back that tramples and scuffles with an initial edgy nervousness that soon planes out and leads us into a track that is more liquid and flowing than first considered. The band have metamorphed and are finding time to explore noisy nooks and crannies that will see development increase and overall success levels rise.  I have considered this song over and over, there is an acoustic affirmation happening here with the band now creating songs that are not instantaneous and throw-away but instead cultivating musical growths that send out slow tendrils and squeeze out warm recognition.  I raise a flag of victory and yeah, fuck all bullies, never bow down to the fuckers.

'Benefit Street' warms up with a few skips and one two combo's before sub-snottily soaring along with accomplished gusto that has a real well-thought slant I am so happy to applaud.  This dig at the takers who gather even more due to a TV appearance and sub-celebrity status is fully justified as some are working their arses into the ground and are far worse off and really pissing in the wind.  The band control their rage, keep a clarity optimised and provide enough corrosion to keep that spiked appeal.  The song is more than just a verse/chorus assault with 'whoa hoa' sections, sub-layers and good harmonies all combining to give another multi-faceted listen.  'We Want Anarchy' is sharp song with a blatant message for the ones who don't want to think too deeply. Anarchy is an ideal, alas people couldn't handle it and I have reached a state where cerebral anarchy is the only thing I wish for.  I do try every day, it ain't easy in this media laden time.  The effort here shuffles with importance, pings about like a melodic marble in a hollowed out rectal space before shooting and spouting with fervour and desire.  In between gob offs the strings take command whilst all the time sticks are slapped around like a paedophilic priest in a prison.  The bass has a moment to support alone and the overall efficiency just needs a volume boost and I am sure you will be joining in with the final salvo for all your worth - I can see no other option.

'The Weekenders' next and a celebration of the escapist warriors who are tied down all week and look forward to the end of labour blow-out.  Such is the systematic routine we fall victim to, the wreckage of personal time that is made up for with many a good bender.  The thirst here is great, the desire to release much tension and I am sure many slaves to the regime will love this as an accompaniment to their valve opening excursion. The band stick to a passionate groove, applying the new lease of life and proving yet again they are on a definite upswing.  'Punk Rock Heart' is a sing-a-long back up number with good pace and embracing effect.  More 'Whoa hoa's' magnetise and the blatant tug at punk rock zealots is there for all to kick but, if you are spiked enough, and to join in with.  This is a simple wrap-around number with a skid and scuffle approach that is primarily aimed at the proud, passionate and...more than likely...pissed.  The inner break is played with tightness and avoids overly fussy flamboyance and I leave this one in a state of middling emotion - there are no opportunities to thump home a critique but the song is perhaps the most basic thus far. I reckon I will be joining in with it though, such is the way of the spiky soul.  'You're Dead'  follows a similar no-nonsense, one-way passage but has greater weight due to its heavyweight pounding and persistent head-peck style that delivers each thrust with a distinct driving determination.  A vindictive fucker this operating with a double-ended gob that, at times, harmonises and adds a variation to the violence.  Again this isn't rocket science and the main thread is uncomplicated but like I say, it is driven home with a convincing spirit and sometimes that is all you need.

'Thick Rick' regards one of those characters who bobs, weaves, takes the piss, looks after No 1 and comes up smelling of roses.  These swindling shits who attached themselves to the buttocks of society and duly feed until the generous posterior is drained dry are no use nor ornament and if all were exterminated tomorrow the world could only be described as 'a better place'.  Sad to say but there ya go, and the frustration exhibited by the band is very tangible indeed.  As a song goes this is another substantial chunk of noise-making with subtle adornments that enhance the clobber factor rather than detract from it.  Good work lads, well proud of ya!  The chasing track is equally effective and goes under the banner of 'Intimidating Man'.  A serious precipice is walked along here as motions are moved through and the band work out a song that, when examined carefully, seems a trifle stuttered and a touch awkward.  I say this as one or two of the instrumental moments seem to just have a hesitancy that lack fluidity and the alternation of textures just needs a trifle more oil in the cogs.  It isn't a duff number but still seems embryonic in certain ways and I feel needs  a few touches to finalise matters.  Personal thoughts and honest - the band would want nothing else and neither should you.

'Goodbye Harry Patch' tumble rolls forth before string pulsing in a kind of 'Warheaded' style.  The tale of a new recruit with hopes aplenty soon turns to anguish and the return voyage home is not had and another number, to the countless masses, is added.  The band play a cool hand here and rather than ram a rack of bullets on the table they go for a quiet flush that impresses more than you may suspect.  This is a sublime gem with a chorus cut maximising the bands brilliance.  A choice inclusion that rubber-stamps the fact that punk isn't always about boom, bang and twat - good work dudes.  'Small Man In A Big World' is another very cultured composition and combines all areas in the most exacting way so far and is played with a cool control and lucid authority that elevates the band onto the next plateau of gratification.  Influences are slightly 'Rancid-ised' and cross-cultured with both verse and chorus making this a definitive pinnacle that shows the true capabilities of this fine, ever-improving underdog band.

Last 3, 'I've Got A Gun' is a rushing number placed in a cute position after the two more stabilised and somewhat secured songs.  Pace-riddled and running with the rear in gear and making sure these acoustic athletes build up to a sprint finish.  A lung stretcher, a blood surger, hey, a sure-fire laxative for the dead-heads - the only gripe I have is in my tummy too, the shits of minor success are here - excuse me.  'World Of The Walking Dead' is a tight-fisted affair with a brisk impetus and a skip in the step as the band offer up survival tips when living in a realm of the zombified.  A healthy outburst that blows away any latter end cobwebs you may still be caught up in (hang your head in shame you swines).  No bad effort this, orthodox, unflustered and gets on with matters which sometimes is all that is needed when into the back end stretch.  'Oblivion' is a grim number, a finalisation to the CD and perhaps...more.  A deeply direct number with few adornments and just a head-down, full-focus grind out that does enough to punctuate proceedings.  It is one of the least effective numbers of the CD and stands out as such due to its end positioning.  It is a decent do but I would have liked more to finish - you see the bastards have raised my expectations and enthused my acoustic hunger, what am I to do?

There ya go folks, and yes truth regarding the tune dictates and I am hailing this, despite the odd minor critical blemish, as a fuckin' fine success for a band worthy of my time and support.  Go see Hospital Food, get some merch and give em’ a gig and, most importantly, you stay lot to those that deserve it.

   

PAPERTANK - PLAYGROUND

Intense power shoves come forth from nowhere and land on my electronic lap.  All I need do is open, download, save, play and...review - not a lot to ask is it?  Time is taken, seconds, minutes, hours and days whilst I mull over the music, make notes and then compile the end textual result.  The band dwell in Switzerland and France and they claim to play 'Loud and straight, with only drums, bass and voices, somewhere between 180 and 220 bpm.' - well what can I say.  They have gumption, they grind with belief, here are some Fungalised thoughts.

'Intro' is an intro, it lays the turf and in many respects kicks up a warning - the question is 'are you brave enough or indeed interested enough to continue' - I think you bloody well should be!  'Waiting For' segues in, is an immediate flickering fire that soon takes hold of the heedful sensors and gets them flashing with reactive animation that travels through an array of positive colours.  What can best be described as a grouchy melodic grind comes forth with an injection of pace that undoubtedly promotes keen life.  The mix survives a rough beating and has enough lucidity to transcend the more fussy boundaries some folk erect.  New school strains intertwine with obvious basics and yes mate, I am getting the gist of this one even though it does walk a precipice I may be wary of.  'Little Gun' is a safe song, a mere steady chaser to the opening tickle and as a consequence plays things on a somewhat linear line with blinkered focus and consistent rumbling.  The growl is effective with my inner alarm bells ringing ever so slightly at the suggestion of US sugarings.  No bad thing and the acute compression of the mix, the compact and drawn delivery and rigid rhythm will surely win more praise than critique.

Further into the vibrating jungle we tread and after scything through another shrub of silence we come across the explosion of 'Banshee'. A heavily rusted start soon gets sanded down and given a slightly smoother finisher and finding a chug chunk of verse efficiency that duly upheaves into a monster banishing bout of mouthy release.  This is a tidy song but doesn't burst from the pack like an acoustic nag with its chuff ablaze - just a regular galloper methinks.  'The Flower And The Earth' sneakily crawls under your listening doorframe before manifesting itself as a wired-up phantom of troubled aggravation that is intent in imposing a holler-graphic image of fiery proportions.  Amid the flaming incandescence there are under-flickers of decorative rationalism that indicates a band composing with care.  My thoughts are of a song with more acoustic profundity than first reasoned - take care and do not overlook.  'God Bless You, Wicked' radio-fuzz chugs alongside a lonesome throat lilt before a staccato stick slip offers the switch chance and the band go at it full throttle.  More modernised vibes come with certain trimmings from the late 90's when new-school invaded and US leanings created deeper strains within many UK units.  The band here combine all these facets, add much bluster and breezed angles before planing them all out and hurling them in a zoned-in direction.  There is more going on than I guessed at and like an eel on whizz this one takes some handling.  I grip firm, I make a decision - I go for two words - 'capable and middling' - the first objective, the second personalised.

Into the last and we are thrown forward with the hammer-heavy bludgeon beginning of 'Cold War Circus', a tireless thump-up of sound that fist-rattles, head fucks and toe-ends to oblivion with a water-tight kerfuffle that dishes out a breathless attack that takes some adjusting to.  All manner of weaponry is used by a frothing and foaming assailant who certainly has an irritation to be rid of - ouch!  'Run Away' is, initially at least, a more spasmodic affair that chops up the surface of sound and has one wondering!  No sooner are our thoughts roaming than they are dragged back and thrown into the expected melting pot although this mixture never settles and is a right old rambunctious rip up that spasms and sweats in equal dosage with an agitation effervescing over the lip of decency throughout - this is no bad thing and I walk away...tickled.  'Virus' flows through veins with vindictive focus, undistracted by outside elements that may cure the cacophonic curse thus causing the crew at the helm to be less effective.  No way Jose, the band will not be diluted, even at this late stage in proceedings and here they expose a veritable hunger that will only be sated by making restless rackets that make a few ear-drums burst.  I like the energy in this one and the liberation of the lilt that at time soars mighty high and...impresses.

We climax matters with 'Weather Guy', and yes, you guessed it, another volatile thresh-about of incendiary acoustic roaring that imposes an emboldened will through the trembling speakers onto your tympanic soul.  At this stage a certain immunity has been built up and I suggest during the next attack the band throw in some slower numbers of a different generic standing to keep the listeners more magnetised, more on the back-foot and...always guessing.  The CD signs off the same way as it clocked in...I leave you to decide if this is the way things should be.

Paper Tank have a wealth of power and a superfluity of skill that is well combined to make a solid quarrelsome disturbance that resonates deep in the listening framework and leaves a decent enough aftershock.  There is hard rocking reverberation occurring here and when the volume switch is flicked to level 'max' the bones jar in delight - it is what we all get off on I believe.

   

THE HECK - WAITING IN LINE

The frontman of the marvellous De Keefman is dabbling again here in a new 60's style unit that combines many influences and obvious flavours into one punchy mix borne from the garage.  It is souped up, kept mightily real and done in a certain style, this is the band’s debut single - ooh me walnuts.  I expect a good listening experience, this is the Fungal take on matters.

'Waiting In Line' flops down, lands the right way up and surges with speed.  From the off the 3-piece under the spotlight blaze a lucid and happening trail with a hungry demeanour to be pondered.  The tonal grab is delicious and interspersed with palpitated drums that hungrily flicker for the next musical fix.  The animation and activity is coloured and high and the lead tonsil expulsions are borne from a bonse loaded with fervoured relish.  The man could be advised to ease up but the fever is out of control and hey, if it feels good let it flow.  A real off the cuff liberation and yeah, just enjoy it baby and let the sweat bag bleed.

Flip.

'Why' is built on a rustbed of scabby sound that is breezed over with sub-trouble-screams that are almost tantrumised and naggingly repetitive.  Here we have basic ingredients with no extra spices thrown in. The only artistic addition is the bands blatant desire to do it one way and one way only...their way!  This is a stripdown ramshackle vehicle of disturbance and is a definite B-side dish.  I am neither taken nor offended, it is in the strain of the grubby garaged genre and reaches climax levels that some may appreciate but, for me personally, I expected more and certainly believe the band under scrutiny have further levels to attain.

The Heck have much to offer, of that I have no doubt and my radar is erect and tingling - cor blimey missus!  It will be interesting to see what they throw our way but to be going on with have a bite here and take it for what it is.  I hope your curiosity is provoked.

   

THE BITTEN - IS IT SUPPOSED TO SOUND LIKE THAT

The Bitten chomp hard from the wanked dell of Wolverhampton and offer up a rambunctious dish backed by a record company who boil bunnies - and why not, pesky grass chomping bastards (I love rabbits really, tis the hares that grind my gears, especially those pubic ones - urggh).  The main drive of what we get is punk and roll with cacophonic carrots crunched and munched with good spirit and a persistent hop in the players undies that will surely put them in good stead in this much abused field of noise.  I am the assessing Elmer Fudd, I have my shotgun to scatter my text and each and every crack will try and have good aim and hit the tuned target of honesty - be warned I have had much practice.  Now all I can add is for you to be vewy vewy quiet, I'm hunting fuckin' whythmic wabbits don't ya know!

Kaboom - the first trigger-pull is at a focus frolic known as 'Thumbscrew', a song that really has a luring beat that forces a bopped response no matter how hard one pushes against the rhythm.  A relish for the task at hand and a propensity for driving home the snatching gist helps to add to the conviction factor and the slip from the more than adequate verses into the liberated chorus chucks is sweetly executed. The upshift in the swing-o-meter is gratifying and the energy generated works a treat.  Tis a good opener and gets the punk blood coursing! 'Rules Of The Game' bass gripes, power thrusts and then pumps acoustic iron with ease.  A less straining affair this with greater grease in the cogs and a more straight ahead sing-a-long chorus space creating an overall admixture that I would prescribe in general dosage that should cause no digestive problems.  It does lack a specific tang and adventure but it will just about do the job to those in need of a decent fix.  I think the band are playing within themselves here and like a well versed wanker this one is chucked off the wrist with little sweat broken. 

Third up and 'Tattoos and Bruises' is easy to grapple with as it comes forth on robust chords and wham wonder drummer explosions all creamed over by a raw-boned, rough and ready vocal blow out that is highly macho, blatantly unapologetic and quite fuckin' convincing. One for the pit dwellers who like a good tear up and don't mind a black and blue outcome.  The strength radiated is comprehensive, the direct rolling stone flattens all attentive moss, as well as your knackers, and the pulverising iron-fisted thirst is relentless - hefty man, hefty! 'Drinking To Remember' is a stout-hearted song with a steady-handed beat primarily bass driven and stick tickled with the guitar migraine twinging and skin scurrying when least expected. A rhythm evolves, a certain sweat on the brow is encouraged and the symptoms of a struggle increase in violence with a persistent tempo that nags one to their bleeding knees.  The gobwork used on top of the coruscating music is roaring and ablaze and it is this element that adds that extra flicker in the ticker.

Onwards, there ain't no let up bastards.  'Anywhere Better Than This' is initially under wraps and comes on a few hesitant tones of subdued shades.  The uncertainty is soon washed away as all is up-thrusted with the throb-heavy snatch of sonic goodness the band are so eager to thrash forth with a certain excellence.  It is strong gushing, infused with some balls-out gumption that is very difficult to resist (and why would you want to).  'Mile After Mile' swings and shakes, trembles the skeletal frame with high growl factor and pulse-pogo fascination.  A hearty song this that works-out with perspired stop-start effort and although in part the song gets too snagged and dragged for its own good there are still many facets and functioning episodes to applaud.  In brutal truth this is my least favourite but hey, one song has gotta be so get over it you pedantic gits.

Tub thumb, string chop, skid and 'Hey ho' - let's fuckin' have it.  'Jimmy Rocks' is molten lava advancing with boisterous burning brio that has a growing angle one is soon consumed by and seared along to plateaus that are considered quite rewarding.  There is nothing outrageously happening here, no icing on a fruity cake to salivate over.  No, what we get is a good gobful of nutritious noise that is easily swallowed and regurgitated with pleasure - barf!  '(Almost) The Perfect Husband' pounds with good force and has an opening riff roar that instantaneously grabs the listening goolies.  The story unfolds with sniping words, the stated slant is perhaps a trifle hindering and the lack of any distinct chorus is a bit of a deflation but the band crack on and although they leave ye olde Fungalpunk slightly unconvinced I am sure many will grasp this and bop along without too many cares in the wicked world (daft buggers).

Tight squelches, a holler and tub humps to encourage.  The wires tighten, the riffery imposes and the first verse bulldozes with great effect - such is the opening gambit of 'Snakes And Ladders'.  The song here is well scaffolded, given a compressed marble-ised spine around which all fore outputs can thrive and...duly fuck your head in.  The spirals, the pressures, the escalations all add to the muscularity of the musical mix and I am giving this one a firm nod of appreciation.  'Elvis' rocks in, comes across as a bit of a piss-take and so loses some credibility in my bloodshot eyes.  I am not so much of a cunt to believe my first impression and replay several times over. What I pick up on is a run of the mill tune that fails to elevate itself from the pack.  If taken out on its own it would gain more credit but I am judging a full CD here and this one is definitely a weaker member stuck within more erectile numbers.

Last 2 folks, are you still with me.  'The Man Comes Around' is spittle sizzled, moves in on ominous tonality before cooling down and sticking to a somewhat unconvoluted and rather relaxed methodology that is easy to pick up, play and nod along to.  The incessant level of intensity is reflective of an accomplished band who manage to maintain interest over 4 minutes 10 seconds without overly exerting themselves. A very reliable and sanguine slab.  We shut down with 'Call Of Wolves', a regular swinging tune that blows well, has a bold under-pulse and rides its own self-made waves with self-assured aplomb that remains uncongealed and runs down your attentive u-bend like discordant backdoor trots under severe pressure - oooh heck!  A healthy clear out this and a decent way to finish.

The kecks are hitched up and I have squatted on the assessing basin long enough. Before I leave I best daub a verdict on the cacophonic karsi walls.  My judgemental marker pen is out and I scribble as thus - 'strong, bold and reeking with good rhythm - this is burly music that bruises with care - kaboom'.  There ya go, over and out, oh and whilst I am here I put a steel-capped boot through the bog just to be consistent - why thank you!

   

ZEITGEIST 77 - THE DREAMS OF HYACINTH THRASH

To advance with cultured endeavour and a slant towards creating scholarly music that strives to keep clear of the formulaic realms of 4 chord verse/chorus regularity is no mean feat and requires great exertion on behalf of the creators and the eavesdropping masses.  In this 4 minute fashion fuck up of a society music needs to have an instant hit factor to get notde and that which is more profound is somewhat left on the shelf and only appreciated by those willing to break sweat.  Zeitgeist 77 create erudite music on many levels and yet somehow hang on to street reality that may just keep things in noticeable fettle.  This is my 3rd attempt at tackling the bands tonal gifts, here I only have 4 to dabble with - wish me luck.

Airwaves vibrate and in moves track the first, namely 'The Jonestown Boogie'. Classic skips done with articulated sound levels greet and grow and a very erudite vine of vibration soon reaches outward and wraps its tonal tendrils around your throat and strangles out a veritable response that I would lay wager is more than a little positive.  The blend of all components is quite exact, in fact so precise as to make this a song that takes time to assess.  I take due time, pick up on the earthy street resonations and am embraced by the documentary style delivery that looks upon a moment of madness with stark reality.  The tonality is sober but melodic and built by a crew who have their own effective style that avoids fitting in to a certain mould - quite a clever cut.

'Sally' yearns with keen pulses and has a desire that drags in attention and relates to that 'gotta getaway' sensation many of us have had when suffocated by the urban pressures and mass mania.  Here the girl under the spotlight has played away and now wants to run away, away to who knows where!  The strings add an acidity, the outside the box sensation is punctuated home with sharp jabs and the cold light of day is revealed and our shoulder is turned and loses sympathy for the target of tuneage.  Musically the construction goes through many movements and takes us on what is an eclectic journey, a peregrination that takes some summing up.  For me it is a bold effort with many layers, many stop-off points to revisit and re-assess over and over.  The longevity factor is definitely grabbed here and that can only be a good thing.

'It's All About You' is a spartan track in part and  when examined closely, one stripped quite bare which is driven by a regular tympanic rustle and a bass weave that culminates in a greater saturation, and of course, contrast factor.  The development of the song is slow and steady, a quite unrushed and professional rise in sonic circumstance with all departments given room to showcase their exacting artistry.  I am wondering whether or not this is the pick of the pops and if here we are witnessing all the finest aspects of a band very much settled in their own well-oiled groove.  The poke at the egotistical is done with strait-jacketed irritation and the band never fail to lose control and follow a bog brush tear up - I like that, an individual sound is always a triumph that should be applauded.

'Go To Hell' is the last and the best (oh how fickle I am and how quickly my mind is altered) and is a keyed in, clued up bout of urban craftiness that sidles from beneath the rubble before wandering various hidden back alleys with authority and insightful pedigree.  The unwashed, matter of fact observations are tangible and one can almost smell the useless situation, feel the decay, taste the hopelessness and despair.  The beauty of this song is the combination of the hard-nailed vocals, the crunching and deliberate bass, the texturisation of the guitar and the marvellous rolling ebony and ivory cascades that breathe stunning oxygen into an already live and kicking beast.  Yes, certainly the tip top tune for me and one that has many, many miles on the playing clock - quite wonderful.

Zeitgeist 77 are a clever crew, their creations smack with sincere scholastic attention and are delivered with determined focus that will not be swayed by expectation of generic demands.  A good band I need to catch up with, one that I am certainly convinced can do it 'live' and bring together many sub-pit dwellers not usually found in the same room - fingers crossed for an 'in the flesh' experience soon!

   

BOGANS - UNO MAS

Bogans may at first be considered social trash from the rectal crack of society's arse but the music comes from a place with much pedigree, considered experience and much anecdotal upheaval.  The players have dabbled before, the lead lunatic I have entertained on a brace of Fungalised gigs in the past when he created mischief in a crew known as The Smack Rats - some buggers never change.  I gave the Bogans a gig (their 5th to date) and it was a pleasure which, in turn, as encouraged me to repeat the dabbling.  Here, I have 6 songs to dissect, who knows what order to do them in - ah fuck it and see hey?

'Dumbskulls' is a nasty number that is heavily condensed and served up on a slow sizzle grill perhaps designed for you to singe your fingers on.  A plug in and plod, a bass drive full of gunk and a quick careen with danger are all had before the route proper is taken and the bubble-fat of sound is spat your way.  A deviancy works beneath the dense tonality and as the song progresses a further compaction takes place and towards the latter end we find ourselves more and more impressed - not a bad debut listen.  I dip into the lucky bag of sound and pluck out the tirade known as 'Murdoch', this is a more flavoursome song with a snatching thorn of sound that has a distinct viciousness that elevates itself after the initial intro shuffle.  Again the band have all tonal chompings on the leash and make sure the move with a directness and strong authority before building to the expected climax.  Behind the gristly and throat-fucking lead there are some solid harmonised reinforcements that come into their own as the song progresses and finalises itself with a sound flourish.  Yeah baby, I am liking this and as a matter of consequence my nipples are found in a state of firmness - now that is a good sign - paptastic for sure!

In for a penny in for a pound, I pull out my grabbing mitts, oh look what I've found! 'Redacted' is ship steadier, a rail-holding number that takes stock, moves over melodic waters with care and gives us time to appreciate a band who know their pluck and fuck acoustic pumpkins inside and out.  A safe and sturdy vessel that rolls on middling waves and avoids tossing anyone overboard or indeed 'off'.  The throat is still gravelled, the music utterly controlled but convincing and this one sheds new light on a crew undertaking a fresh, and I hope, successful voyage - see what ya think.

Next and my hands delve in the crusty underpants of 'Granddad' and what I uncover is nasty, well-mauled and musically rough.  The impetus of the pulsations gets beneath my skin, I feel a response coming on (as well as a semi - ooh me mind) and I cough up a verdict of warm gratification (a bit like a spermed patch of moistness).  This song has a good surge, holds no prisoners and moves with a certain style that is polished, harsh and neatly grilled.  Play louder with each spin, feel the increase in impact, this is a sure-fire grower and a firm and fruity blower (a bit like Oral Annie with the rubber fanny - buts that's another story).  Yeah, enjoy!

2 left, a brace to manhandle, molest and perhaps...textually masturbate.  'To What End' has a nice lilt but is a bit too repetitive for me and even though there is a good counterpunching combo of oral offerings - the sandpapered, the pebble-dashed - I remain not entirely convinced by the initial chuck-outs.  The construction does increase in stature when the band avoid the sub-chorus copulation with the scorched serenader and when a release of the reins is had greater accomplishment is achieved.  It is still one to ponder further and my verdict is definitely unsure.  The last blast I ride along with is the hot-assed, friskily tempoed 'Buckin' Bronco', an arse bruising ride with extra technicality thrown our way and the unit pissing a definite desire in a running time of 1 minute and 9 seconds.  It is that short duration period which gives the song impact and helps it avoid a surgical dissection that may reveal tumours of fault.  I delve in, cut away the layers and find no serious problems to crinkle the brow.  It is a quick waft of escaping gut effluence with a reek that comes, goes and does what it needs to do.

I am over and out, my balls of honesty have been dangled and I reckon I have grasped the shaft of a CD with plenty of clout.  The Bogans have promise, here they have lain down a firm stepping stone that will put them in good stead and give them something to build upon.  I am a mere layer of noisy slabs, I shall add a few to the Bogans rhythmic residence and maybe encourage them to dwell as long as possible in this well-trodden discordant district!

   

SUICIDE GENERATION - 1ST SUICIDE

Fuck gut punkism from the sheep-shit laden shores of New Zealand floats my way and I come, I listen and I hope to be aroused.  The slack wank dumb jerk leanings are rough, acoustically unshaven and thrown forth with a shoddy abandonment only those most ardent dwellers in the squalor will be able to mentally decipher.  A distinct sickness has come to fruition here and is  sporulating with sinisterism that forces me to review this whilst close to the well-used medicine cabinet.  It may take more than pills to sort the noggin out after this vulgar attack of the vapours.

Title track attack first, 'Suicide Generation' splats down on your lap with a disgusting dampness in the discordance thus leaving the listener...delightfully appalled.  All here are slung low so that the bare arse of the inner machinations are exposed and left for you to kick to fuck with open toed criticism.  I don some steel capped boots, swing with fervour but fail to find any real gripes as this simple yet mightily effective repeat fuck comes, blows and duly goes without affected nonsense - it is what it is, get off ya high horse and just fuckin' enjoy.  'Why Can't I Play With You' strums up, hesitates, 4 counts and eventually finds impetus.  The first vocal burst is disturbed, mentally at war and delivered via a contortion that certainly upsets.  Adjustments are taken, we strip down to level 'corrupt' and get in line with a rank affair that once again voids its bending bowels in the most crudest fashion but with a naturalness that appeals to the inner nuclei of noise.  The slaggy throw-down abandon, the sub-chaotic ease and the wound up madness that pervades somehow nudge my nipples of cacophony into a harder, firmer place - mother pass me the fuckin' meds baby.

Arsonised glory next when a flammable fuck feels the urge to burn and hollers from the off 'Set Me On Fire'.  A desire needs meeting, the band are aroused and led by a hot-assed frontman with a twitching pecker that spunks passion.  His clashing and colliding comrades pull no punches and thrust to the fore with a loud, brash trash that creates a spark that soon glows and burns away any stiffened resistance.

'Nora' struggles to start, is like a constipated camel with an arse full of sand, the difficulty to get into motion is painful.  When the rhythmic rectal muscle is relaxed what flies out is utter pebble-dashing shit and it no sooner hits the pan of your attention than is flushed away, bleached and leaves very little effective stench - I close the cacophonic karsi door and flee - simple but honest!  Bumpkin blues follows with a certain countrified cretinism delivered by knock-knee, boss-eyed fruitloops on a mission to humiliate.  This is real slack-jawed japery that rolls around the palate with a two-toned flavour that in part nauseates, but perversely titivates.  'London Blues' is in trouble - both physically and mentally with a repeat escalation of gooned aggravation gnawing at your nether-regions and doing nothing more than creating a pure annoyance that is easy to grasp.  A corruption has taken place and the jarring guitars, crud-tumble skins and the semi-paralysed slurrings are all sloshed about an unhygienic commode and slopped, quite randomly, over your walls of decency - the stench is hard to cope with.

Primeval ravings resonate from the cavern of silence before the next song gets wired up and wanks with pace and fungi crusted fuckeroonery.  The uncultivated savagery and asylum cell release rhythm is scaffolded with a drilling bass-line that trembles the grey mush.  I like 'Love Is Hate', I have a fondness for the fracas and overall rabid possession that transcends the band from the troubled trashcan into the glorious gutter - both shithole refuges, both impregnated with many delights that just need a little poke to drop from the gut of noise. 'Little Mama' is rock and roll routine slagged down and raped by reckless mitts determined to make mess and tear the arse out of anything deemed commercially acceptable.  Within the reeking post-apocalyptic arse fuck we are left with a shambolic spurt of sound that is briefly kicked about, jerked off and left for dead. No sooner has the beating taken place than we fade away...bewildered.

Last two peeps, 'Evil Everywhere', a four count, a dirty trundle and an oral output that fights through the clatter.  Like crumpled arse-paper that has been freshly used this one is stained and smeared, stinks like fuck and is creased in many ways with various shades of acoustic excreta. The movement though is liquid, a veritable diarrhoea of discordance that runs through the listeners fingers and splats with a resonant ugliness. The crew are destined to remain shabby and shambolic but out of the mayhem some fragrance of hope can be had.  We commit the final flush to the sludge swirl of 'You Love Me', and rather than come across as a statement of adoring facts this appears more threat-like.  After creeping like a sinister tomcat down your back-passage of shadow (ooh how sexy) an attack soon follows although talons aren't fully drawn and we escape with a light molestation rather that a full-on shredding.  From slow implication, to a delivery of devilment to a final slink away - the style is dirty!

Over...out...screwed.  This is a CD that will separate the rash form the flash, the crud from the good and along the way will winkle out those dwellers in the dingle who love things undercooked.  I find some bright spots here as I wade through the marshland of melodic muck and hope the crew continue to do what they do.

   
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