Fuckin' hell - whoever says reviewing CD's is easy wants to get themselves a backlog of compilations. I love these efforts but man do they test my patience. I am always behind with my reviews (the curse of being so darned particular) and so when these circular tinkers drop through the letterbox it is with both pleasure and pain that I receive them. In truth I could do like I see a lot of reviewers doing and blag the assessment after a couple of spins but Mr PunkRock Conscience says no and that little twat has a helluva lot to answer for. So as per usual 25 tracks are put under the fungal microscope and given the usual treatment.

Mook open with a spasmodic guitar that folds in on itself before breaking free into a exocet rush of fanatical madness. 'Drunk' is indeed an inebriated surge that upchucks a brief fountain of crazed punk puke which gives no pre-warning of the more melodic respite that is 'Five Days To Day' by the Best Of Enemies. There's is still a splatter and clatter approach but the verbal vomit is gagged forth with more dignity. The Candidates move in with comfortable rhythm which then becomes a modernised punk journey that swings towards the lighter end of the scene but is a fairly decent effort with a pick up and join in chorus.

It seems that so early in the review one can expect a diverse array of spiked sounds and the Smegma outpourings were never expected to be anything less. Mapatazi Bob gives a poppy adhesive contribution with '2nd Best Or Less' a song to enjoy but slightly held back by a production that is about 10% short of the finished article. The production of Punktureds' effort, 'Ballad Of Jack' is about 80% off the mark and somehow gets away with it but will no doubt be overlooked by many due to the ensuing clarity and accuracy of Pickled Dicks 'Up And Away'. It's the best song so far and albeit awash with comparisons it is no doubt a solid piece from a band I really should be more up to speed with. Swedish band Targetpoint move in with equally effective flamboyance and the song 'Another Riot' seems to have enough all-encompassing inflection to cross sub-genres and please all and sundry. A nice, neat track and shows plenty of promise of a band who could crack the US nut - worth a thought anyway.

Discordance opens 'War On The Terraces' by Nobodys Heroes' and keeps raising it's disorientating head now again marring a potential solid song. It seems as though the guitar isn't quite refined enough and the grungey grind hinders the whole effort. 'Cider Violence, Cider War' by Valdez is my kind of drinking tune with a grisly mean meat-grinding sound that decries the behaviour of the wankers who can't hold their beverages and end up trashing someone else's night of jollity. A real intense effort as is 'Stuck' by Spit On You. It sounds as though Valdez and Spit On You are one and the same and the grinding noise and throaty vocals work a real treat on both songs. The latter does veer more towards the true hardcore end of the spectrum but has melody enough to appeal to a wider audience.

Veer Luth ask us to 'Look At Him' with a lesson in sinister gothika that vibrates the baroque walls of disturbance with enthralling articulation. It's a groundshaking rumble that is complimented by the similarly infected 'Sour Days' by the Flame Grilled Chinchillas. Less harsh and with a clarity of vocal that dabbles on a too comfortable ground at times but not a bad track at all. The Commies is a bizarre little prod up the arsehole of semi-ska and the song 'Democracy Of Hypocracy' smacks of numerous other similar ditties that I just can't nail. Is it a good song - not bad and takes a bit of getting used to but hey so does drinking sherry and you know how I feel about that! Buzztone have a modern sounding track on their hands which is a busy number that just doesn't know when to stop. Played well, produced well but let off the leash for too long and so takes the edge off slightly.

Just over halfway through and doing quite well with 11 tracks still to go. This is how the fungal CD review backlog builds as these darn compilations take so much effort and time. 2 Sick Monkeys roll in with a typical surge that entwines 4 strings and many skins and comes up with a decent ditty entitled 'One More Second'. Far Cue whip up a tornado with the blisteringly rattling 'Let It Go' and Striking Surface drip rather than pour with the hit and miss 'Frontline Kids'. Some great riffs but a trifle too disjointed. 3 songs from one could be had here, a curse that happens all too often with more technical sounds. Gristle mincing gunge comes via the turbulence of 'Chokeslam' and a song called 'When There's No Room In Hell, The Dead Will Walk The Earth'. The song winds down in metalhead mode and next in are Hacksaw with the lunatic monk-rave of 'Vacuum Cleaners On Fire'. It's a wild spillage of twisted madness that threatens to breakdown in nervous discordance but grips on with bloodied fingertips and survives the critical ear.

6 to go - Second In Line explode, pause, then blaze forth the slightly unstuck 'Joani Loves Chachi' although a streak of musical malevolence does carry the song through the turbulent battlefield and so a full blown slaughter of sonic life is avoided. Captain Smash enthuse in punk-rap-esque style with the song 'Ruins'. Not totally focused and seemingly unsure of itself it emerges from the rubble just about in tact. Zeroscape offer 'Until Death Do Us' and ditto springs to mind as regards this and the previous track. Very new-skool and with metalised glints that detract rather than attract. The power is there and the skank unexpected but too much in one's punk pocket to deem comfy. This City Sleeps offer almost 8 minutes of sheer torment with the poor 'Storm Drain Symphonies'. A real mistake in the fact that it is way too long and too dreary for a compilation of this ilk, however some will surely disagree. I know there ain't no rules to music and fully applaud the touch but this really is a style I hate with a passion. This doesn't mean the band can't play and it's a piece of utter shit - no - it just isn't for me and that's all I can judge the song upon. Apologies! Moving on and The Panic weigh in with 'Clockwork' a song staying in theme with most of the latter end efforts and inspiration is left flaccid with this curiosity and all it's twists and turns. Ok but no golden monkey and so we end with The Dangerfields and 'Rock Club'. Metal all punked up and a winning end to a CD desperately nose-diving into the mountains of indifference. The song grooves and moves and is a great final firework in a mixed bag of sizzlers and fizzlers.

A lot to go at here and a whole array I could personally take or leave. Not the best compilation around and you can decide to check it out if you want. This tested my patience and towards the end I was struggling - this fuckin' reviewing lark is a real trial at times. As with all compilations there will be a few choice finds but for me there have been less than usual - well I gotta be fuckin' honest ain't I?



A darn good fuckin' band!  That's what we have here and an outfit who have a wonderful turn of tune that is awash with cultured overtones, classy delivery and quality composition.  Both live and on CD Ill Fated Riot never fail to impress and the bonus for the scene is that these are a great bunch of approachable geezers who don't mind getting their hands dirty for the cause.  Now that's my kind of band.  We have 6 tracks here that backs up my belief in this lot and although about 20% short of the powerhouse production they so desire anyone with an ounce of punk insight will recognise this as the very life source of the scene as well as being the bread and butter that holds us all together.  It's a fuckin' excellent 6 track cut and the years ahead promise much.
Mean intent with meat cleaving guitar strokes drag us screaming into the Ill Fated Riot arena as 'Ocomputo' trails an accomplished blaze that defies criticism.  There is a very tangible energy here that consumes all and greedily savages and devours any space in the sonic landscape thus giving us a panorama of fiery rhythm.  A real chop and charge assault and followed by the more orthodox 'Anal A-List' a ditty that holds the attention and wields several acoustic axes that add depth to a noise oozing insight and attention to detail.  These fuckin' tunes ain't just hammered together - no - a careful craftwork is at work here with some adept hands at work.  Influences are firing in from all directions and with each listen a new dimension is revealed which all adds to the excitement.
'Not This Time/Selfish Solution' weighs in at a staggering 6 minutes 4 seconds and at first seems a trifle overwhelming but after the initial hearings one is left awestruck at the talent and convincing musicianship on show.  By fuck this is a beauty with the first cut impressive yet somehow difficult to grasp with its slippery layers of sonic vigour. It is a veritable swaggering song that displays all musicians artwork to a tee and the build up and angst is riotous with the final repetitive bawl of 'Not This Time - you fuckin' piece of shit' a wild climax that succeeds yet does little to prepare the way for the absolutely brilliant anthemic grandeur of 'Selfish Solution'.  The emotive build up to a chorus of gargantuan proportions is mouth-wateringly perfect and reflects just how much fuckin' genuine quality we have in the current punk scene.  Why look back when at your feet is beauty of this standard.  Fuck 77 and get back to the present all you nostalgia hugging fuckers.  Apparently this band had a comment to 'punk up a bit more' - aaaggghhhh - what the fuck - this is spot on and pride should be taken in an identity as impressive as this and for me as long as the scene keeps producing exciting moments such as this then there is no reason to worry.  It's just convincing the masses that's the problem.  A nice find this and helping me go into new year with all punk pistols blazing.
'Let It Go' and 'Name And Number'  are both ever-improving pieces that bruise bollocks with their meaty infelction and blistering aggression.  'Let It Go' featured on the recent Fungalskapunka CD and that says enough of what I think of both band and song.  The fact that these songs have become more effective over the last few months highlights the depth and states clearly that these songs are not just throwaway 3 chord ditties.
'Stupid' is sable despondency and the passion that gushes through the mouth is blatant throughout and works alongside the sinsiter edged guitar with aplomb.  It ain't full on typical punk and will  have accusatory fingers pointing its way with the words of 'that ain't punk enough' shouted from all idiotic directions.  Stupid indeed!  This is a fuckin' solid end to a CD to be appreciated over a series of many plays that require attention and clear judgement. 
On this evidence the scene is as I expected - flourishing and full of talent and if we can get the crowds to match the skills on show we will be surely going in the right direction.  Check out Ill Fated Riot as soon as you get the chance - brilliant!



The familiar and not so familiar join forces here to offer a 4 track split CD that traditionalist skins and punks will lap up with relish. All tracks are played with practiced efficiency and are true working class songs that are as polished as your ox-bloods and as bristly as your bonces. Cobblestone cacophony drenched in equal measures of pride and disgruntlement thus displaying Oi music has more depth than given credit for.

Down the Drain open the showcase with 'Til The Day I Die', a drilling orthodox grind that hits the mark and impacts with dogged basic rhythm rather than flash-Harry unnecessaries. The chorus and verse match one another ideally and the song sets a fair standard on which to build.

Gimp Fist follow next with the excellent 'Skinhead Not Bonehead', and as per usual these lads produce a passionate piece of streetpunk that has many layers yet stays so simplistically appealing. The vocals are as good as it gets and when scaffolded with such steel-edged musicianship as this you just get the feeling that this crew are a cut above. It seems no sooner has my awestruck jaw hit the ground due to the skill of Gimp Fist then there is another equally effective ditty coming my way. Stunner after stunner - remarkable!

The second helping from Down the Drain needs to be darn good to compete in this kind of exemplary company and it is just as well that 'We Are Down The Drain' is a fuckin' good effort. A similar aspect to their first offering is had in so much as it is a headlong fully focussed song. Here though the throat is torn deeper and the guitars fuzzed up a little dirtier and the passion more than obvious. Cracking cemented melody and from first to last the anger is apparent.

So 3 tracks and 3 crackers but the finale is truly astounding. An entire change of pace, an utter u-turn in rhythm but 'A Country Fit For Heroes' blazes passion and splits at the seams with musical accomplishment. A reggae infected song oozing class and sneaky skill these boys know how to compose. The grand flag flying entrance is met with sweet guitar before the mellow edged cruise kicks in with laid back expertise. The song untwines and is just one helluva a classic. Why the fuck are punks looking over their shoulders when the horizon burns with flaming talent such as this. Comparisons will be drawn here but for me it's pointless as this is way ahead of its predecessors. Make no doubt about it Gimp Fist are a great band and are releasing quality CD after quality CD. Don't let these piss attitude times lull you into thinking anything less - time and place account for a lot and this band could mix it in any era.

So yeah I'm impressed - not only do Gimp Fist maintain their exceptional standards but drag another band into the mix who are packed with promise and who I must investigate further. This CD will be released in the new year on vinyl only - do yourself a favour - buy a fuckin' record player!



Bold, brash and with a pocketful of blitzing tangents the Sounds of Swami machine keeps the listener on his aural toes and has many a trick up the acoustic sleeve with orthodox harmony and stereotypical rhythm thrown out of the window. In the 'live' arena SOS are a hectic, whizzed up four piece who daze and amaze with their technical skill and water-tight delivery. On CD the appeal may be more divisive with a take it or leave it fracture becoming apparent. One thing for sure though is that Sounds of Swami are the real deal and I for one am taken aback by the blatant talent of this very effective crew.

This CD swaps and changes at the drop of a hat and you have to spin over and over again to truly analyse all areas and even then at no point is one sure that all is captured and appraised. This tests the reviewers insight but all one can do is write what one feels.

'The Lions Share' dramatically revs up and is straight into full throttle with gear shifts aplenty. All musicians are as one whilst delivering the soundblast this band are so renowned for. Experience as shown me that here we have a four piece of amazing talent and although the structure is sometimes awkward there is no room to take breath as one assault after another is upon you. This is a granite grind that furiously explodes over and over with crazed angst that is always kept under control no matter how unhinged the whole delivery gets. Even though the song careens all over the sonic highway you know the speedlimit is pushed and the destination is always in sight. Rammed with riffs and plundering drumbeats the whole cacophony moulds into one and gives us a winning start. 'Political Politeness' holds more on to a straighter journey with structure more at the fore of things than other tracks. It wanders but not far and the apocalyptic desolation left in the wake of the all consuming mayhem is apparent. Lyrically the anti-bigotry works albeit slightly confused within its own message. The zenith attained so adventurously so far is maintained as almost immediately the pronouncing rattles and riffs of 'Identity Crisis' clatter forth and the turbulent tackle of supersonic seizures hits us hard.

The keen vocals hold weight and although screamed with utmost gusto still retain coherence (especially when reading the lyric sheet ha, ha). The chopping thrash suddenly halts as we are overwhelmed with the biting commands of 'Suck, Feed, Bitch, Repeat'. Profound stuff indeed bordering on the cryptic but the chant to recognise individuality seeps through and yeah a song that is strong is had.

Suddenly I come to a crossroads as Tracks 4 and 5 put my attention to trial as they are by far the most elusive songs on the disc. 'Glassroots' begins with a ballad intent but soon turns tail and adopts the SOS signature sound of ultra busy, buzzing action now all too familiar. This kind of music is no easy-listening and when not in the mood can annoyingly grate rather than gratify. Nonetheless it is played well and if this is your chosen listening matter then you are in for a treat. 'Bank' is similar again and too busy for my now flustered head. There is so much going on and this is the only real criticism I have of this fascinating outfit. The talent is abundant, the application and dedication quite precocious but this overly intricate and technical delivery will divide crowds. 'Live' it works better than on disc and this is I suppose down to the fact that visuals do enhance the vibes. A personal viewpoint which some will agree with and some will vehemently oppose, but definitely worthy of mention.

If you like chancing your arm with new sounds and tricky dicky tuneage (which I recommend you should) then this is worth picking up. Sounds of Swami are a band to check out live too as I am sure they will impressed rather than depress as it really is a 100% outpouring bursting with youthful passion.

There are two demos added on the end of this CD with 'S.I.T.A.R' holding much potential and 'Tension Seekers' seemingly destined to be more of the same. Great band, great noise but very much an acquired taste.



Modern day surf and skate punkage from Italian label Power 90 Records. With language barriers, diversity of sounds and 25 fuckin' tracks to get through here we have another testing compilation to plough through and review. When I am writing freely there is nothing finer with which to bung up the ink stained sewer than a tough old compilation. With literary laxatives swallowed, the ringpiece is relaxed and hopefully the verbal logs will tumble. Quick squeeze, clench and...

The excellent Chromosomes get things flowing with the superbly optimistic '(Voglio vivere) Come mi pare' which roughly translates to '(I Want To Live) As I think'. Nice sentiments and a nice song that enthuses with good vibrations and an efficiently joyous ambience. Skipping by on light heels of melody this summertime tune captures the attention and is the only way to commence a CD of this style. Duff follow on smartly with the grand proclamation of 'Don't Call Me Emo'. A hard-driven drum beat grinds this track along a hard road of swift guitar playing and clear vocal output. The track is elusive at first but eventually brings the listener in with it's accomplished finish and likeable sonics. It works well and the slight alteration in approach by 7 Years and the clean cut 'Your Salvation' is tidily slipped in and gives us a solid hat-trick of sounds with which to start this 25 track marathon.

A few of these bands are new to me which I think is a good thing indeed and I always relish the opportunity to tackle the assessment of new sonic material. So far so good and NKKD's offering of 'Abduction' keeping the standard high although this one is less punky and more orchestrated in its effect thus forcing me to listen more than usual. I like it though and the mix is strong with a healthy backbone of noise providing sturdy structure for the vocals to shine from. In fact the chorus builds in stature with each listen and certain intricacies are missed on initial listens if one isn't careful.

The Brilli slow down proceedings with 'La vera storia di M.A.' a real/true story that loses me as I can't speak Italian (bah) but still is a decent effort despite the pace and delivery being nothing I would venture forth for. The Eggs speed things up oh so slightly with 'Useless' which is a veritable clean-cut pop song that captures all the commercial aspects of one of punks extremes and keeps it squeaky clean throughout. The good thing is that it evades the technical nonsense that can mar tracks like this and keeps tricks fairly simple thus making it laid-back listening. It does go on a tad too long though and so dilutes its final effect whereas The Rags and their feisty 'L' istinto di rivolta' (Instinct of Revolt I think) times things just right and is one of the more powerful tracks so far. With a deeper resonance it is a welcome mood change and almost similar in sensation as is 'L' attimo inafferabile' by Deviazione. Again a song too long and Wasted's minute less 'Lost In Your Eyes' is getting back to the terser side of things that I prefer although 3 minutes plus could still do with a bit shaven off. A solid track that is now of a similar vein to so many others on this CD and so in some respects will lose attention which is the major flaw of this entire outpouring. Such is the hazard of compilation construction one doesn't know whether to mix and match or stick to one sub-genre and try and vary the flavours. The compilations I have put together have always adopted the former approach but still I question my decisions even though I am pleased with the end result - the curse of the compiler and all I can do is assess individual tracks and how they look within the final melee of music.

The Hypnoslugs carry a mild psychobilly inflection and get the attention with the futuristic 'Supersonic Ladies'. Not bad and one of those that hangs onto the periphery of punk, in constant danger of a different classification. Further checks of this crew I have no doubt could disappoint or impress with equal effect but I will be snooping around their sites to see what is on offer. Fankaz spill chaos with the discordant 'L'Acchiappasogni' that seems indecisive as to what it wants to be and Dead Sundays remain tame despite a start that holds much promise.  I don't know where 'Lets God' slips up but it does seem to lose focus at some point and never gets back on line.  It does give a glimpse of a band worth checking though and that in part is the task of contributing a track to a compilation.
Kill That Girl bop in with some nice pop punk that stays fluffy enough to tick all the criteria boxes in this somewhat misused sub-genre.  'I Don't Think Like You' has a happy chappy guitar piece that gives life to the song and adds the sought after 'likeability' factor so many others miss.  The Kinkies almost hit a similar thread but the effort 'Mickey Mouse Sleep With Her' is a meatier affair with a grimier feel which doesn't let the track down.  The song just 'gets on with it' and maintains one consistent level throughout which would have failed at a longer time span, but is just right here.  'Via Da Qui' by The Roscos is a bit of an oddity and I really can't place where this lot draw influence from.  A curious little track that has some good moments and some less ear-catching segments too. 

10 tracks to go and it seems I have been working on this review for ages.  Rollercoaster may have 'Wicked Words' but this is another track that lacks punky angst and urgency.  Ok, Ok maybe that's not the point but the point is that this is what I prefer and the song here isn't my style of listening.  It is easy and mellow but not for me.  This whole CD adopts an approach that is just a different mode of punk that is really hit and miss with my loaded lugs.  Ordinary Discussions fail to rouse with 'Your Silence' and Made Special For are a little too lightweight for this old critic although 'Punky Strike' does improve with each rotation and proves that reviews can be indeed transient and only a personal perspective.

Quarantena chop in with 'Normaimente eccezionale' at alternating levels and escapes as a scuttling piece that is typical of this style, Kane HC 'Cosa e' successo miss Berger' tumble power and poppy vocals into the melodic mixing machine and come out with a multicoloured effort and the Killdaddies impress with a crustier than usual offering that barks by the name of 'My Dog'. A flying saucer attack seems imminent as the strange spacey echoing that commences the lunatic madness of 'That's Why' by That's Why Hardcore seems borne of planets beyond. The crazed madness that follows is straight from the interplanetry vaults of extra-terrestrial hardcore and works tremendously. A very exciting snatch of laser-light zeal and a good, if unexpected, inclusion.

The final trio are composed of No Way Out and the melodically regular 'Drain The Soul', Langolieri and the classy speedburst of 'Perdenti' and Amn3sia with the hurtling 'Fashion al rogo'. It's a decent closure to a CD that ain't bad but does stay too similar throughout to maintain interest. This review has been a long time coming primarily due to this criticism and the fact that a lot of tracks are adequately played and produced but fail to leave an indelible mark.

This is a style that caters for a certain crowd but I would still risk a few quid on a similar CD just to get to grips with some new listening matter that always results in one or two pleasant surprises. For crying out loud there are 25 tracks here and surely that is worth a gamble by anyone.



Freedom Faction are a new band on the block but with a wealth of musical knowledge and insight.  This is nowhere more apparent than when you spin this choice 5 track debut.  The moods and modes are subtle with many a retro flashback summoned via a noise of nostalgic essence and thankfully modern application.  The entire quintet is quality and the only gripe I can find is that the bloody track listing on the back is wrong - pedantic but true and hardly worth mentioning - but I did - what a twat!  Anyway this insignificant blemish doesn't detract from a bloody excellent outpouring that hits all the right punking nerves.
'Blah, Blah, Blah' is a real beauty that rolls in on tinny drums before the rumble of bass joins in and makes way for the almost syntho-edged guitar and absolute fantastic street-girl vocals.  In fact the vocals are the vital sugaring on a very sweet dish and just make this joyous listening matter.  Girlish, edgy and with sullen speckles of sexy sonic delight this opener is a fuckin' cracker.  The very catchy and unorthodox construction will generate interest from across the blurry punky landscape and if this lot can maintain this standard then many doors will open.  In fact the standard is kept consistently high all the way through this CD and '1-2-3-4' has darker recesses to visit but retains melody and rhythm which is a definite priority with this outfit.  The opening 4 count sends chills up my manly spine as the gravelled angst surely means business.  Quite a range has been hit so far and the backing music accompanies this lasses oral outbursts quite excellently.  This second splatter has a defiant strain that rings true and gives strong foundations to a chunky sound.  'Come And Get It' is a boozing, bruising gem and goes from a statemented verse to a wonderfully delivered chorus that slips beneath the sonic sheets and caresses the inner ear with magical delight.  Upbeat yet threatening and one to get you dancing with pure fuckin' unadulterated passion.  I gave these lot a gig when some very crafty underdog knowledge was passed my way after the tuned in lugs of Born To Destructs Woodstock had heard the band 'live'.  The gig's sound was wank but it was apparent a good band was trying to swim - thank fuck I realised!
The ominous banshee-esque darkness that swirls from the speakers in embracing clouds of ravenous intent adds yet another facet to this obvious jewel and the intense passion and furrowed belief is startling.  'I'll Hang (Onto Your Every Word)' is another lofted classic and Freedom Faction have made a genuine impression with myself.  Toned, musical and easy to listen to - this is my kind of punk rock.  A conversation with bassist Nick displayed his own personal wealth of punk knowledge and I guess is a major influence here but one can tell that all players are making valuable contributions.

'Vive La Punk' is tributary tuneage incarnate.  Swaying nonchalantly on a carousel of confidence, severed with a skanky seizure, and continuing with perfect precision this is a great way to round of a very good CD.  Faultless in fact and if they hang on to the release date we have a few very early contenders for song of the year.
Exciting times ahead are plentiful and this is a band I hope to view many, many times.  Underdog punk keeps on punching it's weight and with genuine quality such as this we will get our day.



Absolutely 100% noise here as Perth Hardcore crew Mafafi rifle their way through the drawers of melody and leave one helluva cacophonic mess.  This is a nasty bag of mayhem that will leave some shaking their heads in bewilderment and some gagging for more.  For me, Mafafi do what they do well and in the flesh they don't half rock the joint.  Their first offering was, as per usual, completely DIY and this is more of the same with a few corrections added to the first embryonic blitz.  There are no holds barred with Mafafi - just one long illegal headlock of venom and visciousness until your spirit breaks.
Cymbals prepare then the silence is smashed by corroded guitar and tinny drums before the whiskey burnt vocals chords are unified and 'We are PHC' is hollered our way.  The grind slows and demonic bursts yell from hell as the whole machine-like offering rustily advances and then halts.  Some goofball yank talks bollocks and then we are into 'I Musta Had Me Bout 15 Dr Peppers'.  A 42 second classic that is pure Perth passion.  I love hardcore of this magnitude and the transient blast is far more effective than the long drawn out series of explosions.  Great stuff and 'Ed Burns' is equally brief but slightly more unhinged yet still impresses.
Just as the CD the review is as brief and with two tracks to go we are nearly done.  'I Thought So.  He Was Trying To Steal My Brick' flashes bright, subdues itself and then reignites into unadulterated madness.  A fair do I feel and maybe a bit loose in parts but that is not the point - this is madness and madness it should left to be.  The only gripe I have is with the final track and as one knows with me and H/C - if it's above the minute mark then I favour it not. 'Still Don't Believe...' goes on a little too much for my fungalised lugs and is a real mismatch of insanity.  The opening dialogue is brutal and unhinged then we have a speedburst of typical Mafafiism before a tired bout of depressed and tortured time-wasting kicks in.  I don't like this idling intermission at all but understand what the band were trying, as a mixture of pace can enhance the contrasting sounds.  I don't think it works here but it's a nice try nonetheless.  Pace eventually kicks back in and the song ends well.
I like this crew and their zest and racket but do realise some will absolutely detest them and their output.  Such are the hazards of dealing in hardcore and I am sure the band couldn't really care less and will contine on the quest.  The curve is upwards - oh so slight but upwards and that is success enough. Now go Make A Fist And Fuck It....



Deadlamb Records are Ireland’s ultimate underdog label and sponsors of the Spit and Sawdust Tour and so get a fungal thumbs up for everything they do for this precious scene. They have a fire in their bellies and they wanna make a difference - not a bad ethos is it? They love their punk music and these CD's reflect that as well as showing their sense of melodic adventure in the fact that they are not afraid to mix and match noises from here, there and everywhere. The buggers send me these CD's to review and it does put me in a position. What if they are crap? How do you say to your own sponsors who you admire for all they do that their latest CD is shite. Luckily they know me and expect the truth and I am sure appreciate my honesty and critical evaluations - I bloody well hope so ha, ha. Anyway here goes another venture into the Deadlamb Records discography this time with a compilation of 21 tracks with, as per usual, many tastes catered for and all punk needs pleased.

With the previous 2 efforts I have noted that without several spins the CD's could very well easily be misjudged and classed as mundane, mediocre offerings with no adhesive qualities whatsoever. Like all good things, time enhances the beauty and that is again the theme with this very decent product. Mutiny hail from South Africa and get the ball rolling with an abrasive slam entitled 'Politician Bastards'. This is a solid commencement and despite the corrosive sonics there is enough funky guitar to make this a pleasing opener. The frontmans gob is hungry and thirsts for impact and for me seems satisfied on both counts. Danish band the Mighty Midgets offer similar pace but with a new school inflection and so have a chance of appealing to the young and old with the urgent 'Guilty Until Proven Innocent'. A firm track that hotfoots it to the finish line with tireless gusto and accomplished accuracy. Canada's Glamorous Maggots have essences of screwball punkology reminiscent of quirky US bands with an inkling to be zany. The opening drums and tinkling guitar of 'Ego's And Arrogance' do not forewarn of the ensuing noise and it really is a bizarre little offering. Similar to a few Alternative Tentacles outputs and a curio indeed to mull over, enjoy, debate and then reconsider. Do I like it or do I loathe it - well certainly not the latter so an uncertain nod goes the songs way.

Nomatrix offer their usual punky edge and are a band I do like. They have a diversity of delivery and are instantly recognisable, 2 qualities that count. There is a sneering edge to the vocals which appeals and this is a fair song. There is a swagger to the Nomatrix sound as well as an unsettled tetchiness thus creating further depths of interest - always a good addition to any compilation. California Redemption ask us to 'Screw' and is a modernised melody that despite being turbo-fuelled does seem to lack a complete adhesiveness and is one you have to play over and over again to get to grips with. It's gotta be played loud to have any impact and occasionally gets the head a little too far down and stays overly focused. Flat Back Four however 'Burn The Flag' with their renowned vigour and excellently delivered brilliance and once fully kicked-in the songs burns very brightly indeed. Los Langeros is the freak of the family with an insane sounding barnyard cluck-up called 'Killing Frogs'. It is pure idiocy and raps and craps along with a taut-stringed intercut that irritates the most tetchy of nerves. It is still listenable but occasionally it does send one fuckin' bananas with its waspy drone and hillbilly vocals. The Arguments sound completely revamped here and regardless of the hit and miss opening that seems under-produced the song operates well with a nice chorus that immediately catches the ear. 'Bomb Drop' thrives because the vocals are delivered with passion and so helps the muffled instrumentation that, if better produced, could have made a real stunner. The 'Last Round' is served up via Swivelfoot and is a right good old knees up that I personally rate. A drunken slur seems apparent and the song foams with effervescent belief and some accomplished musicianship that appeals by the pintful.

Lucien and 'Freechild' is a rockin' piece of glam and one of the bands better efforts, Batteries Not Included bop and bang with a real good effort known as 'Before The Flame Dies' and Koncept bulldoze all in their path and deliver a track that is indeed 'Cuckoo' with rage. One thing to add at this point is the very fine example that this CD is of containing a wide diversity of tracks that need to be tasted individually rather than trying to assess as one whole product. The package itself can appear disjointed and thus the final assessment is very unworthy of the quality. Having reviewed many compilations I have learned that each one needs it's own analytical approach and this one is a definite sample of that methodology. Compilations with more familiar bands have, if one isn't careful, the advantage of making a greater initial impact and so sway judgement - luckily I have an underdog sniffing streak and that I hope comes across in my scribblings. No sway, no way - just as fair as I can be with what's rammed down my earholes.

Derkovbois swing in with the previously unreleased 'Papp Laci' which has an opening sequence that doesn't reflect how the song eventually finishes but nonetheless is a decent output and steps nicely on board 'The Last Bus' by Semi Komoly. This song hints at skank, trifles with punk and gentle merges melodies and triumphs on all fronts. This lot are quite a Deadlamb favourite and on the back of this song it is no wonder why. The angst is restrained but apparent enough and the overall musical backdrop sweet enough without being sickly. Another previously unreleased track next called 'Countdown' by yank red lighters 'Haywire'. Hectic and just staying on the right side of coherence this is solid enough and has a good bass undercurrent that pads out the finished sound. It does seem to jerk and stutter occasionally which affects the end output but it gets by...just!

The Liberals from Malaysia mix nastiness and rusted inflection with typical punk passion as they burst lungs with 'Don't Need Your Revolution'. This shows just how far the Deadlamb arms are reaching to bring the ignorant some worldwide punkology - I for one appreciate it. It is all good stuff and the next band sound like a Spanish Cocksparrer in some respects as well as your usual overseas new style band. 'Vondonikens' deliver a likeable effort that has a chorus that is very familiar indeed - or am I mistaken? First Time Riot are taut to the extremes with class and quality and this is a very good song and reflects one of those UK underdog fuckers that is wasted on punters in these pathetic shores. 'Meminisse Sed Providere' is exact and cruises with punky edge and individuality - lovely! The Bullet Kings next and I am a genuine fan of this band but this is their worst song to date - I hate it. It never really gets going and the tune just grates and grates - sorry lads but the worst song of the CD and that’s fungally official. There goes my fan club membership but I hope they realise I still believe in the BK crew. Loads will disagree with these comments but come on I gotta be truthful now!

Von Boom from Sweden present us with the penultimate track entitled 'Annu En Dag', a frustrated seizure that never quite blacks out but just stays too shackled thus limiting a full all-out blitz. Not bad but the finale is impeccable as Oi noise merchants Mouthguard impress us from down under with the boozing 'Drink All Night'. A straightforward shindig and a fitting conclusion to a solid CD that gives a taste of many obscure modes of punk rock.

Deadlamb continue to plod in the murky depths where the underdog tries to swim and for me it is labels like this that we owe untold thanks to. They awake and feed our curiosity and help spread the message all over the fuckin' world. Compiling compilations is a hard task and the rewards can be frustratingly non-existent in as far as finances go but to know you are doing your bit and trying to get bands exposure is reward enough especially when it is of this standard. Like I said earlier don't judge this on one or two spins - settle into the music and then truly enjoy!



A bit of scottish skank here from a band who like to mix it up a bit and throw a few added and completely unexpected tangents into the final brew.  Hardcore nibbles the fringe of the melody and the whole concoction is pockmarked with pimply punk excrescences.  The sonics teeter on the cusp of the chaotic abyss yet refrain from a headlong plunge and stand tall against the defiant breeze of imbalance.
We commence with 'National Insecurities' which cymbalises in then swiftly hotfoots a ska-based chorus that is occasionally prodded by the odd hardcore member that gradually erodes away the resistant ringpiece of rhythm and brings us panting to the verse.  A few disjointed moments only just keep the tracks many sub-routes adhesive and somehow survival is had and the destined climax is reached.  Despite this palpitating pulse and the obvious experimental basis there is enough of the finished product to gain attention and hold promise.
'A Girl Called Mary' mellows the mood and has a smoothly effective opening sequence that must surely come across quite effectively in the 'live' arena.  Impressive and the chorus cascades in on twanged strings before it abruptly butts out and the coffee smoked cruise continues.  Enhancement is given to the track insomuch as one expects it to erupt at any given moments which to some degree it does at 2 minutes 20 seconds in but then slips into a brief break and then gets back to its initial roots.
We close the Terrifying's trio with 'Troubled Times' and looking at this bands current gig list I don't know how they can entitle a song by this name.  All seems healthy on the JT front!  I digress and the scuttling insect that this song is seems to be unsure of where it wants to go but finally gets its head down and heads forth before becoming enraptured by a cacophonic chorus that gets better with each listen.  A bit of meat on the bone here (or to keep the entomological theme going - a bit more chitin in the elytra) and the strong build up to the last note is impressive and waves goodbye in positive style.
So yeah - 3 tracks and 3 underdog segments of skapunka that does the job of pleasing the listener and arousing curiosity.  I have already booked these buggers for a forthcoming gig and this just adds to the anticipation.  Catch up with these as soon as you can and broaden your listening horizons you punky dudes as they may well just appeal to that drunken sense of rhythm and passionate desire to bang yer head to.



You can make your own comparisons with this 4 track ditty and I suspect they will be more than a little obvious.  Although a United Kingdom outfit the sound is most definitely stateside and with a distinct Hellcat Records feel it is no wonder that they are doing alright for themselves in such a short space of time.  Indication one suggests of the unjustifiable fascination with all things yankee wanky, much to the cost of our British and of course, superior scene.  This however should in no way detract from the good stuff the new breed of punk’s blast out and so the following review will be taken from the usual fungalised neutral stand point.
Track one 'Rebel City Rockers' twinkles in with an 80's skank mode of melody before a two-tone toe tap is ground throughout an appealing chorus that has somewhat jive ass vocals that border on rap and dance around the periphery of star spangled sonics.  It is cultured stuff that lacks the grime of gutterpunk but thrives on its paradoxically intrinsic simplicity.  Momentum is built as the tune travels forward and overall it is an above average track to kick things off with.
The opening words of 'Born For Death' are radio-ised before slipping easily into a purer production mode that becomes involved with a song that has a traditional method of melody which has nothing new under the sun but which displays an emerging talent that is only slightly held in check by a production which is about 5% short of the mark.  Pedantically pernickety I know but I feel it is worth comment as the standard that this band are aiming for is so blatantly high.  A drawback I suppose of this style of music whereas the grittier and equally effective hustle and bustle of underdog punk gets away with lesser intricacies and makes up for it with spirit and passion.  Not to say there is no passion here but the music dictates and so precision in all areas is required.  Other than that the song will be adored by old and young alike and this and its 3 comrades will only enhance the bands reputation.
Staccato strokes of the six-strings casually open 'Straight To Hell' and a maintaining of the previous consistency is had with a song that reminisces and has that groomed 'don't care' feel about it which  nostalgia nuts and new-skool noodles will lap up. All the trimmings are here that make a successful band but the hygienic final outpouring will undoubtedly deter some of the more cobblestone punkers from making the effort to check these guys out.  This isn't primarily my chosen listening matter but you gotta give all departments of this scene a visit and offer support where needed.  The fact is though that many doors will open for this crew as the less threatening noise will appeal to the more sober punks who seem to make greater strides especially with the less identifiable brigade.
We close with 'Do You Believe' a song that again many will gush over and will have punters aplenty nodding their heads in charmed pleasure.  Like I said earlier I think these guys could do very well for themselves but this track is far from my favourite and is far removed from the underdog saliva I find myself slipping and sliding in trying to gain a definite foothold. 
So for me an open verdict but as far as the punk populace goes I suspect a total yes, yes.  With this vibe and attention to detail you really can't see The Exposed failing in all they attempt.  Contacts will come by the bucket load and so should the gigs providing the application to the punters is as good as it is to the songs here.  Even the fuckers have got 3 praises out of 4 from this fussy streetdog and for a style such as this that ain't bad at all.  I'll check em' out if I get chance and I suggest so should you.  I expect to be swung either way but one thing is for sure is that I will come away admitting to a technically brilliant band ready for the bigger times punk has to offer. 

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