An offering that reeks of those mental utterances we all get when it seems starting up a band is oh so easy and to release something on CD takes no time at all. This has all the essences of 3 'erberts who have thought 'why not' and gone straight to the garage and knocked out this basic demo for no other reason than to satisfy their nagging enthusiasm and be part of a punk/skank scene. It's not a bad initial outpouring and gets the first step set but in the long term things will have to improve and be more challenging for reviewers and fans alike. Nevertheless this is assessed for what it is with warts and all taken into consideration and the embryonic stage that this band is at. They are on a forthcoming SAS gig and after listening to this I have no qualms at all about them playing and hope they make ready contacts and pick up various pointers. Guitarist cum vocalist is the only guy I am familiar with and it is fact indeed that this guy has a backlog of skill and influenece to draw upon which I am sure will put this trio in good stead.

First underway is a track buy the name of 'D.S.A' a tirade that just hurtles on with agreeable angst and bare-boned rhythm. Nothing flash here just a head-down rant that feels as though the band really needed to get this one off their chest. 'Gordon Brown' quickly follows and is about that fat useless fuck that sometimes gives the impression he actuallty may be trying to run the country - well perhaps not! The opening formulated guitar vibe is rock solid and the song is not half bad although it does fail to entirely erupt due to the slightly off production. It's DIY though and purely believable and the effort is there so what more can one ask.

So far and not too bad and moving on to track 3, 'Not A Friend' we have a sound that has sprinklings of many flavours that leaves me quite undecided as to whether it works or not. The production doesn't help matters but besides this obvious flaw I really can't make up my mind if the track is a cohesive listen or a disjointed upheaval. It isn't bad but it isn't striking either and in truth comes across as something of an experimental piece.

'Beer And Curry' shuffles in with grungy guitar and piss-pot lyrics that are as basic as you want but the main tune ain't too bad even though it has certain limitations that keep it from fulfilling it's potential. It's listenable and far from crap but the next release does need more care and attention to detail to avoid tracks falling short.

For a first effort this does the job and doesn't set the standard too high for further offerings. I suspect most will agree that this isn't brilliant but isn't crap either and just gives enough of a preview of a band who have a lot of progression to make to be close to the finished article. The fact is however that it has some decent moments, is only a free demo after all and is about 3 guys getting off their arses and having a go.



A nasty little CD here that is a pre-birth examination before the fully borne bastard is released forth into the overfed maw that is the punk scene. Encrusted with a fungal fuzz, lacking a certain amount of clarity and pissing venom in all directions this initial spillage will not appeal to the new school lovers of polished piss-arse punk but should please those grimy revellers who adore all things noisy, real and up fuckin' front. Personally I am impressed as all the quality ingredients that make up this kind of polluted discordance are there and please my soiled punk spirit no end. This is a recording of the band at their third rehearsal and on this early evidence State Chaos should do more than alright for themselves. One or two minor concerns as regards the overall package are had but read on and all will be revealed.

'Its My Life' breaks no boundaries and in truth doesn't intend to. It's rampaging defiance that relies on vigourous vocals and blazing instrumentals and it bloody well works. Shove it up your lethargic arse if you don't get this as you are missing a vital passion that to me is more than obvious. 'Big Brother' spreads a mile wide shit stain and is a bog standard burst that thrashes into oblivion with corrosive likeability. 'Life Is Now' screws in and rattles along confirming a style that has been set and will stick throughout. Only a certain style of punk can get away with albums that maintain an intensity without any let up and this is such an example. All songs are approximately 1.30 to 2.00 minute explosions that are built on surging guitar, rattling drums and solid bass lines. The vocals are yelled out with punk ferocity and occasionally reinforced by the other players. A simple formula and you don't have to be a genius to produce this kind of stuff but the point is not everyone can vomit forth such foul, scorching abuse and that says so much.

'Ram Raider' and 'Menace To Society' continue the tone and despite a shithouse production I for one love this. Every punk needs stuff like this in their collection because this is the backbone of the noise we love and State Chaos bring enough experience and spirit to the table to make this highly palatable. 'Killing Crew' is perhaps the weakling in this nest of loud larks but the following Discharge-esque 'Fight The System' rapes the old school noise of early 80's hardcore merchants and regurgitates here with equal poison. 'We'll See The Light' is another dirty slag with all bared and ready to fuck and roll. It's all on the line here and if the production for these tunes is handled correctly we may have something similar to a recent Riot Squad outburst that was indeed a classic. On the other hand one false move and the whole racket could turn to shit and we could very well have a seriously under/over produced mishap. Good luck lads!

'Junkie Con' has vocals that stay restrained but still work against the swift strokes of the guitars and this songs leads nicely into the now expected rattling vibe of this rehearsal riot. 'What You Gonna Do', 'Drug Abuser', 'Sent To War' and 'Cradle To The Grave' all persue with the foremost being the weakest piece due to its overdone mix and with 'Drug Abuser' a welcome change of tempo that has a chorus I am sure many a crowd will take to. 'Die For Your Government' finishes with a consistent flourish and this trial by terror is done.

The final autopsy concludes that this is a band who know their onions and can certainly make the eyes water with future recordings providing they go for an all out assault rather than tweak these efforts a little too much. There's nothing new here but then there doesn't have to be as the hardcore punkers of 30+ years will lap it up. It is a very British sounding barrage and so should cross the channel with no problems whatsoever and in truth the only gripe is that State Chaos will have to vary the theme a bit to achieve a certain longevity.

This is my kind of punk and is a noise that impresses or depresses dependant on a wide array of criterion the most obvious of which will be age. As a sneak preview of a band about to hit the streets it does the job and the forthcoming album has potential.



So a 14 track compilation from the loins of product peddling Carl Arnfield - AFS, Worm, Bullet Kings etc. etc. guitar maestro.  If women ever produced as much breast milk as this guy does CD's then we would all be up to our necks in lactated liquid and victim to the ever leaking Nipple of Oz.  With an incessant desire to put sound to silver this guy takes no rest and just hammers out a selfless supply of admirable stuff that really should be picked up by more punters.  This ain't half bad and the main ethos behind this CD is to give away free to areas where these bands are not as well known therefore hopefully spreading the word.  Several skateshops are pushing the CD and passing one out to each customer who makes a purchase.  An utterly non-profiting making venture and one what says a lot about the compilers attitude.
And so we open with scouse reprobates The Down And Outs.  These guys have been about a few years now and during their early days I saw them at least on half a dozen occasions and was inpressed every time.  In fact these buggers played a couple of gigs for my goodself one of which was the successful 'Scouse Twats Invasion' in Stockport.  This track 'Punk Forever' is a typical melodic blast that has a uniting feel and overall upbeat tone which will be adored by fans and outsiders.  The Inadequates are another band I have seen live (in fact I have seen every band on this CD live) but the only time I saw them it was an utterly shite showing.  It was at The Iron Door in Birkenhead and if memory serves me right these guys were on the bill with the UK Subs.  Fuckin' hell it was a poor do but on this evidence the band has come on in leaps and bounds and here they deliver a tune to savour and one which gets better and better with every spin.  It has an adequate depth and a choppy yankee doodle inflection which coasts from verse to chorus with practised ease.  A good start indeed and Sick 56 are as reliable a band as any to maintain the high standard and so they do with the meaty 'Losing The War'.  Not as speedy as many other tracks from this fine band but just as effective with growling vocals against a backdrop of sound musicianship.
Next up One Man Stand, a band on the upturn as far as output is concerned but a band who have flat-lined as far as pulling in new interested punters.  The latter concern is by no means down to the bands ability but a failing of the scene as this outfit are truly blazing on all cylinders at the moment and here we have one of the best tracks of the CD as 'Light's Out' raises the bar to new heights.  A truly stunning track and one built on passionate vocals, slicing guitar, accurately delivered bass rumbles and nail-gun drums.  A snippet this from an album of mighty proportions and proving One Man Stand to be capable of sitting alongside any other bands whoever thye may be - so wake up will ya.
One of my other favourite bands of the moment are AFS, which as mentioned earlier features balding warlock and compiler Carl Arnfield on guitar.  Well, having spun this over and over again I am of the belief that this is one of the Foot Soldiers worst tracks to date and leaves me a little deflated to say the least.  I am sure many others will disagree and despite it proving the band to have diversity it never really grabs my attention and comes across as a song waiting to burst.  'For Your Glory' sounds anthemic but isn't, at least not to my fussy ears.  Boy am I in trouble now! Flat Back Four next and the distinctive tones of frontman Steve open with melancholic conviction before the track bursts in with clarity, steady delivery and confident musicianship.  I like the band and like the song and so enough said really.
Middle Finger Salute follow and with a whole lot of hard work under their belts are finally gaining recognition and seemingly getting onto more established gigs with more recognisable bands.  This is what they want and you can't knock em' for working hard towards their goal and this is a right good tune with lots of 'umph' and youthful zest.  It skips a merry beat and is a party-esque piece that will have revellers jumping up and down with intoxicated fervour.  It fits in nicely with the rest of the CD and in its own way makes a presence felt.

And so to those ale soaked lunatics Sense of Urgency and the vary familiar and enjoyable 'Men Without Jobs'.  A great contrast of skanky sonics and thrashing vocals make this a paradoxical winner and give a truly unique identity and reinforce my belief that here is a band that is sorely overlooked.  The 'live' shows are always entertaining and when frontman Dec has had a few sherberts you can always expect a bit of added spice to proceedings.  So from one one flying fart to 2 damp squelches as The Bullet Kings and The Fractions both offer 2 efforts that I for one loathe.  I like both bands and have given praise aplenty to past releases but these two stinking secretions are really nose-turning turds that I abhorr.  It is a question of taste I know and it isn't the fact that the bands can't play or are just misdirected.  'Gringo' and 'Proper Successful' respectively are severe no-no's to my rockin' nugget due to the fact that the first is a fine example of 3 men having a breakdown and trying to recapture their youth by composing a Saturday Morning TV theme tune and the second effort is just too damn wayward and disjointed to make it pleasurable.  There said it and there goes my chance of winning reviewer of the month in the Carl Arnfield household!
Now from the two shrivelled titties we come to a brace of beautiful bristols as The Spittin' Dummies and The Shadowcops pour forth an exuberance of well-crafted melodic punk rock.  I used to deem the Spittin' Dummies the best band in Manchester, a mantel I feel has been justifiably taken by the awesome Shadowcops and here is evidence of my reasoning behind these two self-made appointments. The Spittin' Dummies cruise along with the brilliantly composed 'Suitcase Pimp' a song that was going down a storm 3 or 4 years ago when the Dummies had the local scene on a plate and looked all set for greater things.  The trouble is that when you get four loose cannons firing in all directions things never go to plan and this lot suffered through their own waywardness and ability to cause upset without even thinking.  A fuckin' great bunch of lads though and a fuckin' great band - what a waste!  Now the Shadowcops effort 'Calling Out The Elders' is from a crew who for me haven't put a foot wrong and are a very exciting prospect indeed for someone who has near enough seen it all.  I love what these lot do and the stylish sound they knock out, with all levels raised, really does hold ones attention.  This bands biggest failing is that they are around when people treat music as a fashionable throw away product and something to kill time with before they kill themselves with pathetic mundacity.  The Shadowcops should steamroller to the top but with the attitudes of apathy out there at moment I wouldn't hold my breath.  Both these tracks along with One Man Stands earlier effort fly the North West Punk flag high and we all should be proud of these bands.
We close the CD with two solid sounding bands that pack a punch as and when necessary.  Kings of the Delmar rattle out the emotive 'On A Scale Of 1 to 10' with casual aplomb and put enough fire in the belly to make this a very listenable piece.  The vocalist is very accomplised and is lucky to be backed by a fine group of players.  Now that the KOTD are down to a 3-piece the whole package has took on a punkier edge and improved visually and sonically so things are really looking up.  This track at 4.25 may be a long piece but one feels you have time to settle in to it and truly appreciate - just like a good armchair in fact!
And lastly The Great St Louis who for me are leaning more towards the rock side of the sonic spectrum a tendency that serves them well and gives insight into the compilers preferences.  It's no bad thing and 'Silent Home' is an efficient outpouring that perhaps fails to make a sturdy full stop to this 14 word sentence but still finishes in good style.
The final analysis is of a good CD that will do its job and give everone something to savour.  Compilation tasks are no mean feat to create and it is always an impossible challenge to get the correct balance of bands and please all.  The only thing one can hope for when carrying out this punk task is to do what you yourself deem correct and I know for 100% Carl has done this and so gets full marks for his efforts.  Hey fuckers this is free so if you have any complaints see the man himself and get off yer arse and have a go at doing your own showcase of talent.  It ain't easy but you have to try.
As for the North West punk scene - well has it ever been better - this is a small snippet of what's out there so you really all should make the effort and check out these 14 bands before they get fucked off and call it a day.



4 tracks of rapid urgency here that border on the brink of several precipices but maintain a firm foothold thus avoiding a plummet into the all consuming chasm of categorising criteria. Pacey americanisation, new-school hardcore, name it what you will but for me these decapitators of the living dead are not as easy to nail as one first imagines.

Rumbling bass is soon accompanied by distorted metal guitar before a complete unison is had and the chasing vocals are introduced. Within 'Cracker; there is plenty of buzzsaw activity and effervescing infection that just about keeps within the bariers of coherence. As the track progresses some classy moments are had with timing and adhesive instrumentation at the fore. 'Pretty Ineffective' pursues with a similar modus operandi and is neatly broken by the chorus rant of the song title. Before reading the title I was sure the song was about sexually transmitted diseases and the vocalist was actually shouting 'Free Of Infection'. In fact even when I learned the songs title this genitalised raving was hard to shake off, similar in fact to a wart on the nob - or so I am told. Anyway I digress! The track is a decent do and the flashing flavour is adopted again with the redneck sounding 'World War'. A trifle too similar to preceeding tracks but as a stand alone outpouring it isn't bad at all. The opening whirr of guitar really encourages me to jig-a-jig around a bale of hay and then pitchfork a comely sheep. Maybe its me but it does come across as a 100mph barn dance. Best track for me this and still upholds the quality.

'One Day' finalises matters with a drum and guitar duel commencing the track before we are once again drilled hard with the thrust and eagerness of the now familiar Zombie sound. It falls into line with its 3 boisterous brothers and completes a CD that is a solid opening gambit and showcases a very capable band. As far as future efforts go I would like to see more diversity of pace and general sound with all areas tested to the full as regards their musical ability. This though will do for starters and the epileptic seizures that rattle throughout each track surely makes for some very exciting 'live' shows. This is just as well as these 'erberts open for me soon on a SAS gig of which I am now very excited about. More please!



I got a batch a CD's sent to me by top punk peddlar Paul of Angry Scenes Records and this being the last one I have yet to find a CD that has been a let down. Out of the several silver discs that he sent me this has been the hardest to assess for no reason whatsoever. It is just one of those that needs extra spins and more careful scrutiny and which really tests my conscience as I am fully aware that this bugger has been lying around waiting for an analysis and people would be awaiting the fungal verdict. Words just wouldn't flow and I thought that perhaps I had indeed uncovered a dud and I just didn't realise it. Now I am ready to put pen to paper and yet this is no dud - aaaaggghhhh (the bastards done it again)!

A lot of reviewers would class this as hardcore but personally I don't feel this does the CD justice. It is easy to classify this effort as this very sub-genre and say no more but some H/C offerings have a clarity and depth that is usually unexpected. Yeah BSD are hardcore but not the grinding, meat-tenderising thrash one could so easily expect by this throw-away label. BSD maintain rhyth and produce melody to a certain extent and perhaps vitally embrace a certain sing-a-long essence in several numbers. I like hardcore in small doses but this has more to offer and retains a longevity of listenability similar in some ways to a band known as RAM-MAN. I am not usually drawn to making comparisons but this one just yells out at me and so there you go.

The fingers are initially burnt by the lyrically cute 'No Contradiction' a song that raves against capitalism and consumerism and defends the sale of the CD. Its a nice twist and musically the blends of diamond cutting guitar, whizzed up Crassite vocals, tumbling drums, and vibrating bass all succeed in waking up the listener and gripping the scrotum of attention. More consumer hating vitriol from track 2 as the spoilt twat brat generation who want and have no appreciation are blasted away with the angst attack of 'Spoilt'. A nice flurry and the excellently entitled 'Spannered' continues the madness with a high octane love turns to hatred explosion that comes into its own with the 4 line brilliance commencing 'Your blood is thicker than water...'. Very nice!

'Burn The Stupid' drips controversy and divisive opinion but so fuckin' what - punk is about opinions and that swings all ways. Agree or disagree with the ethos of this fuckin' blazing tirade the song is a peach and the chorus draws you in like an 'Out of Bounds' area and you just can't help but tunefully trespass. 'Brutal Logic Of War' skips a merry beat but of this track I am not convinced. There are a few sonic vacuums that have slipped in un-noticed thus leaving an unfulfilled track that is ok but nothing to write home about. 'You Laugh' steps further into the realms of true hardcore and for that fact is judged as such, therefore its a succeeding riot that head-thumping grinders will love.

'True Pollution' is hotwire extreme with its rapid pulse that lacks prior melodic arrangement but gets by with sheer brutality as does the sniping 'Sheep'. In fact the latter track real does walk a fine line which teeters on the edge and one feels that anytime the track may implode into a splintered mess. It doesn't though and 'Wish I Was You' hurtles in and out with equal energy and we are already at the final triumvirate of terror that commences with 'Summers End' a thoughtful excursion into a tale reviolution and hope. Some textured guitar work help proceedings and then we are into 'We Are The System'. Orthodox in title and orthodox in chanty crustosis that will please the fans of bands such as The Restarts, Conflict, Subhumans and Moral Dilemma. You get the idea and this is the anti-procedure/tradition/government verbology one would expect from this type of outfit. 'Why Do You Care' is an excellent closure and has that vocal exchange technique which serves many a band well and here is no exception. A loud finish to a loud CD that never lets up and has an ever-pressing emergency liable to rouse the most stagnant listener.

2 hidden tracks are brief and more of the same with the first having a streetchant style and the second being the bands excellent signature true - a real choice closure.

Overall not bad at all and the consistency throughout is pleasing and the general zest ridden output equally appealing. Variety of pace, ambience and melody is indeed lacking, a point worth noting for future expulsions but this is not at all bad and speed-loving punkers can really buzz along to this.



I was given this CD by Beanhead from One Man Down and asked if, in my own time, I could review it.  Those fatal words 'in your own time' have proved most pertinent as this has taken me all of 6 months to get round to and assess.  Fuckin' terrible really and due to being sidetracked by more pressing reviews and interviews this little piece of nasty crust has been left to mould away.  Well the backlog has been chipped away at and being near enough up to speed again I located this 7 track expulsion and set about the assessment process.
The style of this CD is strictly noise pollution of the kind dished out by the more sludgy bands of this mix and match scene.  I personally couldn't give a fuck what sub-genre any band slips into as long as the ethos, sound and attitude are there but the review sometimes requires a loose name-tag so there ya go.
The initial rupture comes via a pleasantly entitled ditty called 'Shut it'.  This song is mean-intent, frenzied hammer-gun rustiness that relies on prickly protestion and indecipherable rage and follows a routine that pulls nothing new from the magicians punky topper but is still a half decent listen if you are feeling a trifle irate.  The first monologue cuts in next with a short explanation into the definitions and connotations of the word 'fuck'.  Even though its a dated comedic piece the unemotional delivery of the speaker is still amusing.  Quickly following is the unexpected manky skanky jive of 'Parasite'.  A nice track and one which also explodes but still holds on to the melody and rage.  An interesting partnership that somehow works!
More fuckology then into the heavier 'Gun Bullet Fate'.  A twisting slice of madness that again maintains the unsettled edge.  It looms ominous with a feedback drone before the blitzing blast is upon the listener ramming the head into the ground with lunatic venom.  The sudden expiration and interlude of computerised sonics is brief before the CD's best track kicks in with grinding essence.  'Computer Says No' follows two opposing skank and hard-edge trails which both alternate and compliment excellently thus making this a quite delightful piece.
'Fucked Up' ain't a bad follow up at all but fractures slighlty and mars what could have been a better offering.  The flashing moments of pace work though as does the entire tirade of 'Fishhead Rice'.  This song breaks up into a mild mannered six-string moment before ending in hate-filled energy which is the only way to go as far as I am concerned.
The final segment of fuck 'o' roony spills forth again from cold lips and the last skatch and snatch spillage of 'Dead Inside' closes the account.  A sandpapered sound is had that doesn't convince but doesn't disappoint either and overall it isn't the worst of endings to what is a brief but promising CD.
There is an abundance of fuel in the tank here that could turn the wheels of the Dirty Protest hate machine for many a mile and hopefully the band can go on from this fiery exhaust cloud and create songs with a better production.  Worth a listen though and for the dreadheads a veritable catch.



Well here is another CD I have had too long and it's released on Fungalpunk Records too - talk about not holding any favourites.  The Redneck Zombies are a SAS pleasing trio who make the most rarest of appearances most of which are on the said Spit and Sawdust Tour.  I ain't complaining as these guys have yet to let me down and always entertain the crowd whenever they play.  This is the only release available and when the lads asked me to put it out I was only too pleased to take up the offer.  It is a solid 9 track treat and for 2 nuggets should never be sniffed at.
'One Note Song' is a trifle more than what it says on the tin but weighing in at 8 seconds not much more.  It's a good short explosion though and sets the way for 'Dead City' ideally.  This song is restrained and melodic and a darn good effort which rock and rolls along with gritty vocals and simple punk rhythm.  The nastily entitled 'Ejaculating Corpse' drips degenerate inflection and is a surging piece of necrophiliac passion that is built on the decadent minds of the players and their need to get certain desires out in the open.  Another meaty piece that crushes the eardrum and breaks nicely into a chanting tirade that almost humps and bumps to orgasm ecstasy.  Dirty bastards!
The sanctuary of melody is sought and found with the excellent 'OK' a song seemingly void of graveyard dealings but you never know.  I have not looked into the lyrics too much but wouldn't be surprised if there is a sinister undercurrent of flesh eating lunacy.  One line about eating brains does stand out so there you go - an obsession that both disturbs and amuses.  A cracking song again and 'What The..' equals it with its poured puke intro, bass riddled core and piss-pot inuendoes!  A real punk pleaser for anyone who knows the consequences of going on the lash with no holds barred.  A belching full stop and back to the zomboloid interest with the crazed 'Undead Girlfriend'.  Thundering along with oral insanity from all players that teeters on the brink of a full blown breakdown but stays mentally sound enough to give pleasure.  You have to worry about these lot but they get by and the excellent 'Banshee Bitch' once again maintains the excellent standard and gives hint that these fuckers are not even trying to produce good material and that it just falls out from the anal-like minds like a conker brown turd from a totally relaxed ring-piece.
'Hold Your Hand' and 'Redneck Zombies'  are two tracks that I have no idea about as regards lyrical content.  Best kept that way I guess but the ghoulish inflection says so much and trust is thrown out of the window and acceptance of these coffin-capers is had.  Both good fuckin' numbers though and so easy is it to become involved and sing along to despite the neighbours concerned glances and worried utterances.  The song 'Redneck Zombies' is a peach of a signature tune and rattles a punch right in the knackers of the listener so as to grab attention and retain it with comfortable aplomb.
The closure comes with 'CTT' another quick track that just about sums up the approach of this CD with its urgency, efficiency and on-the-edge delivery.
Yeah it's a minor classic and recommended listening that should help the RNZ crew get greater recognition and reward for their great live shows.  Check this out and see the band - on both fronts you are onto a winner.



From the crazed opening yell of 'Exploitation' you know what to expect from this band that have been around longer than some of Ken Dodds jokes.  This long serving crew have done their time on the toilet circuit of punk rock and after a brief upturn in performances and outputs over the last 5 years have finally started to get that bit of credit they truly deserve.  This 15 song CD won't win any prizes for originality and certainly won't have punk rock analysists pondering over the profundity of lyric but one thing for sure is that lovers of up-front, no frills punk from the street for the street will love it.
'Exploitation' is a strong opening move that is brisk, hurtling and gloriously defiant.  This is an old fuckers treat and shows the aging dog is still ripping at the arse of the unconvinced.  It's typical output from this fine band with emphasis on insistent hard driving tunes that seem to never let up and remain totally focussed.  'Exploitation Too' follows a similar theme as do all tracks on this CD and although this is a minor fault it is also what makes the CD so consistently good.  In fact this similarity of song forces to listener to play in extract mode rather than spin the disc through its entire 15 ditty length.  Another small gripe but hardly a sore point.
'Not My Religion' is a 'live' favourite that seems to have been around for years and this recording does the song entire justice and I am sure will have fans jumping around at home joining in with the chant and rant chorus.  'Say No More' cruises in with industrial guitar strokes before once again adopting the heads-down stance and relentlessly aiming for the finishing line.  Again an individual pleasure and yet draped in sonic clothing like its fellow melodies.  'Take Control' is quintessentially a regular punk tonic that anyone in the scene will adore.  The whole sound so far is highly agreeable and is a breeze to review which in itself is a real pleasure and yet a pain as a challenge is always welcome. Two nice endings to this last track and the opening noise show a slight degree of experimentation which is always welcome too.
The albums towering moment 'Show Some Respect' is a piece that deviates from the usual pace and stands out with glowing colours and is a really momentous offering.  A crisp guitar solo is simple but marvellously executed with a passionate feel that caps this crackin' song in gilt edged brilliance.  It just goes to show what a difference speed alteration can make and the following 'A New Revolution' may be run-of-the-mill tuneage for this crew but it still stands out due to the fact it follows the slower epic and has an embracing football chant segment which will get the fans involved. 'An Image For Money' roars along on turbulent waters continuing a similar theme and style of operation that retains effectiveness and punk spirit.  It's a neat song as are all tracks with the only underlying niggle being that all sound too much like the others and therefore blend to give one final impression instead of a multi-faceted construction that shines from several different aspects.  No bother though and if all the tracks were shite then fair complaint but the fact that they are all of a solid standard in some respects bypasses this criticism (in some respects, not all but just in some - fussy twat ain't I).
'A One Man Army', 'Justice', the superb 'Full Of Shit' and the equally effective 'Britain's Still Burning' do nothing whatsoever to negate the quality of this 15 track expulsion and strengthen my views as regards the upturn in quality Instant Agony have made over the last few years.  A real bread and butter, value-for-money band with whom you never feel any dissatisfaction and I am glad that this CD reflects their overall improvement.
3 to go and 'Down And Out' commences the wind down with a medium style buzz that has a consistent riffage behind all verses before the basic chorus is dished forth with ease and excellence. 'Leave Them Alone' pogos in before quickly speeding on - yes another good track and nailing Agony's status as a fuckin' good band. We bring down the moth eaten curtain with 'Stabbed In The Back' that starts with reflections of another band but soon jumps in line with the IA routine. A concrete end to a rock solid CD that will stand the test of time and signify the fact that through the good and bad times of punk rock Instant Agony just kept at it and produced a few good songs along the way.

Every punk in this rotten land should have seen this crew on more than one occasion and I'll bet you that there a very few who thought they were shit. This CD backs up the favour shown and it is worth adding to the collection as it will put a bit 'o' brass in Hocky's pocket so that he can feed that bra collecting habit he so rarely mentions.



Two Manchester bands here combining forces under the TNS umbrella and delivering a total of 7 tracks typical of this labels output. All flavours are divisive in so much as there will be hardly any middle ground with opinion. The rough edged punks will dismiss and the new-school sceneheads adore with a few others liking and disliking as each track unfolds. I find myself in this last category being a long serving tattered punk fucker with an inkling to try different sounds.

Revenge of the Psychotronic Man come out punching first, a band I have seen on quite a few occasions and an outfit that can impress or depress in equal measure. Their first CD I consider bilge, their second a cracker with their 'live' shows being highly entertaining and marvellously executed or a loose disjointed affair that never takes off. Toss a coin and take your pick but here they have knocked out some of their best stuff to date with the key factor being that all tracks are terse outpourings that avoid slipping into malingering humdrumity (Fungalpunk is not restricted by even the dictionary ya twats). Therefore this CD doth wank rather than waggle and a pleasing sensation is had albeit of a non-sexual kind (very disappointing)!

'Phil Power' is quick, to the point and stays on-line and so is a solid opener with the reinforcements coming by way of 'This Is Where The Idiot Lives' which is the pick of the quartet with both an excellent melody and rhythm maintained and using a subtle change of gears that adds extra vitality. Two rattling blows are followed by the more straightforward jab of 'Sleep In Your Bath' which lacks variation but is incessant enough to dispel disinterest. 'The Jagermeister Song' is a 'live' favourite that is a 34 second piss about that does what it says on the tin. Promising stuff indeed and if all efforts are nailed on stage like they are presented here then ROPM can progress a few notches further up the dimpled ass of the subgeneric buttocks were they do dwell.

The second half of the CD is given over to The Fractions and although a track less than ROPM they take up far more time with their 3 hit and miss ditties. I like The Fractions, proof of which is in the promotional pudding as they have played quite a few gigs under the Fungalpunk banner coupled with having a few praiseworthy reviews from my good self. Of late it seems this skanking crew have undertaken a slightly new direction and although more mature of sound it has, in some respects, lost the initial niavety of uncomplicated delivery and metamorphisized into a Marmite-esque noise I can pick up or put down. Some may say I am misdirected but one should never be afraid to voice ones honest opinion as long as it is true to the heart.

'Out Of Pocket' is far and away the best track as the sunshine optimistic opening just creates such a feelgood factor that the whole effort is just destined to survive the critical pen. Technically the band are curving upwards (similar in fact to Captain Banana Mans Erection but that is an entirely different tale) yet here they retain a certain pre-pubescent innocence I felt gave this band a charming identity. All components blend nicely and the whole song gets a mushie medal of appreciation. 'Down And Out' is similar to its predecessor but a bit more splintered and doesn't leave a lasting impression. There are some pretty good uppers that help the cause which I reckon hardened skankers will truly relish and buzz over but which the passing music fan may overlook in search of a more immediate less surreptitious fix.

The Fractions do have a good reputation and fully deserved it is too so all I can do is write what I feel which I do in true OMD/Fungalised style and so therefore to 'Proper Successful'. Anyone who keeps up to date with reviews and such will no doubt have read my recent appraisal of this song whilst reviewing the North West UK Punk CD Volume 1. No doubt many disagree with my comedic scribblings against this effort yet after a few more listens I have found little to change my opinion. Individually certain snippets work but are overwhelmed by a displeasing lack of arrangement thus turning the whole effort in several directions but frustratingly remaining undecided. I class this as crap so there ya fuckin' go - value for money as ever. Take away my personal truth then take away the opinion and go masturbate over a lie - don't consider the attitude even close to punk - full stop! Harsh but reviews are about individual opinion and that's the way it goes! I think no less of this band it is just one of those - no offence meant!

7 tracks and yeah, despite my dislike of the final track I think this is worth a try. £4 for 7 songs on todays turntable of tuneage is a tad too much (ridiculous as it seems) as there are numerous compilations around that give more value for your brass (see recent reviews on this site for evidence of this). At the end of the day though it is only 4 nuggets and even though the credit crunch nips you should keep the TNS collection going so as to support the cause.



The second compilation from the currently ex-promoter Jean Marie Stewart and once again showcasing the vast and varied talent we are all spoilt with on the scene today. I say currently ex-promoter because once someone has the gig bug you never know! The mix is diverse and obscure with emphasis on getting quality lesser known bands a bit of extra notice. A thoroughly applaudable ethos and full marks for getting the arse in gear and pushing punk from the street.

Now if you are thinking of getting a compilation together the first thing you need is a good band with a darn good song to set off on the right foot with. Here we have a classic example of this as the ever impressive Gimp Fist open the batting with the choice drive of 'Up Against The Wall'. A Taxi Driver snippet leads into the strumming brilliance before the passion is poured via a vocalist on the top of his game and assisting a powerful unit to work their very special brand of magic. Hotwired pursue with the fuckin' crackin' 'Domestos And Drugs' a song that oozes punk angst, frustration and uncontrollable energy. It's really rough-house stuff that stirs the soul and is complimented nicely by the unique vibrations of Born To Destruct with the song 'Born To Destruct'. The rusted guitar and angelic utterances oppose and blend in pleasing style and I am more than glad that a deserving band are included here. Simple and sincere - can't ask for more!

Undead Boys tumble in with late 80's Americanised sidewalk venom and sneer out the likeable and eerie 'Undead' with convincing ease. 'The Rebels Song' by The Casual Terrorist is the first acoustic cut that is straight from the littered back alleys with it's unclean approach and piss-up-the-wall inflection. In places the fuzz clouds the sonic panorama but the potential is there as well as a bounty of belief and that will do for me.

Fuckin' good stuff here and the most pleasing aspect is that I am hearing one or two new artists which really does feed my punk hungry maw and tempts me to seek out more. Greedy cunt that I am!

Voice of the Mysterons sidle in with the faggoty lunacy of 'Daylight Monsters: A Faerie Shocker' and do the business in manic style with overtones quite reminiscent of other Yank Yodellers. The next massive moment comes via the raging bite of Global Parasite who are really blasting forth some powerful stuff at the moment and 'Prejudice' just gets better and better with each forceful outburst. Fully directed with a blindingly effect bass line holding the entire piece together. Gasping for air I seek the solace of a seat but thankfully avoid the 'Wheelchair Outta Control' by the excellent Fire Exit. A tremendously catchy ditty this that combines slag laden vocals with a twanging guitar thus producing a little stunner. Yeah watch your fuckin' wall!

Splinter casually snipe out 'Plastic Punks' that creates a new direction and adds new sonic colours to an already kaleidoscopic montage of nasty noise and the chasing violent hardcore of The Fuckin' A Team and 'Police Menace' is perfectly timed and splatters it's own shit stained tint across the enthralling portrait of discordance. The plodding basicness of 'In Your Place' by Rimshot just gets on with it and although lacking identity is valid enough to be on this compilation. The trouble is with this track is that it is followed by a piece of pure brilliance that comes via those retro skapunkers The Steady Boys. This is a real diamond effort and truly a song that you pick up, play and never forget. I have had the pleasure of having this lot play on a Fungal gig and have reviewed their EP too both of which were my total pleasure.

The second article of acoutsica is melodic, inspiring and crucially charming. Dave Hughes hits the nail on the head with this individual item of excellence that floats from the speakers under the banner of 'Daddy Fought The Law'. A nice cultured song and one that shows forethought and a cuteness of lyric. 'Broken And Beaten' by Dead Beat Heroes creeps in and is very, very old school as it tumbles forth with dusty rock 'n' roll affectation and cruising spirit. Not bad at all and then onto the totally and utterly marvellous 'Nowhere's Safe' by The Prairie Dugz. I like this band and it is long overdue that I gave them a gig down these grimy Mancunian parts as I am sure they will turn many a head with their tartanised tuneage. This is an oldish track when they had a female front, a voice I personally held in very high regard. This is a momentous song that embraces everything good about this band. Clever use of melody, neat intricacies and oh what a voice! It shines bright from a glistening CD and is a notable track that everyone will love. Fuckin' fantastic!

If this isn't enough then D' Corner Bois sway in with the belligerent anthem 'Throw Your Shit'. A choice band and a choice tune albeit this being the rougher version rather than the one on their very impressive split album with Barse. Love the thinking behind this and as a fellow shit flinging fucker I can't help but enjoy the whole darn racket. 'Jacking Up Jesus' by Burnt Cross is a malevolent anti-religion burst that crawls along and one Crassites will binge on over and over again. It's a good song and I was a fan of Crass but the whole anti-religion thing goes over my head when there are so many other cunts out there who have nothing whatsoever to do with any faith.

'Jock Itch' and Black Jesus is a dirty radio broadcast of a noise that dwells in a cluttered garage bursting with frenzied underground appeal. 'Pressured' by Total Bloody Chaos is just as grimy but the classy ability to crack out a good tune is totally enthralling and the overall essence of crummy chaos is delightful. The almost pleading vocals escort the deep emotive tuneage perfectly and TBC are really baring all at the moment much to the pleasure of the punk peeping toms everywhere. Subvert pursue with 'The Military Song', a slightly under-produced switchblade that cuts not as deep as it should but pre-warns of a sharpened promise surely not far away.

The Something Somethings can be just that or in fact the complete opposite and here they don't achieve their maximum potential and the waywardness shouldn't detract from a song that does indeed rattle in parts although flounders in others. The Murderburgers are the best pop punk band in Britain at the moment and this great track is a small slice from their fantastic album 'Bitches, Blunts And Pop Punk'. Great stuff with the major niggle being the drastic drop in sound levels for one of the CD's premier tracks.

Out on my feet but two to go with 'Silent Scream' by The National Disasters cracking along in pleasing hardcore style before throwing a golden spanner in the works with a light skank attack - classy! Finally it's the strange 'Trees' by Jim McKellar that has a cruising late 70's poppy punk garage edge but one which gives glimpses of a burst of punk balledness in so far as the length and relatively full sound go. Not bad and what a CD indeed.

This is a first class DIY turd floating in the punk rock rivers so get out yer fishing nets ya cheap set of twats and order this. The spirit and meaning is there and without these kind of punk peddlars the scene will fold in on it's own uncertain self.

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