Hey everyone, I know it’s been long time since I last rapped at ya, but we’ve been bogged down enjoying the summertime over here. But, we’ve managed to cobble together a record reviews section for your perusal. The usual caveats apply: we tried to pack as much in as possible, left a lot of mediocre records out just to keep things moving, if your stuff isn’t included drop us a line and we’ll talk. Tape reviews are being compiled as we speak. On with the updated Power Rankings, joined in progress…

16) DAVID NANCE “Do the Negative Boogie” LP – this one’s pretty fresh out of the mail at HQ right now, and even if I kind of liked ‘More Than Enough’ I waaay more than kind of like this one so far. I won’t express feelings of unrequited love for this LP just yet, but lets just say I’m pretty serious about it. A Merle Haggard cover with a noise solo, rockin’ folk, folking rock’n’roll, that crawling kingsnake opener. I see a future for me and this record, go get one mailed to you from Ba Da Bing. It’s alos interesting to note that Nance’s teenage (?) garage rock band Forbidden Tigers might be the last good record to ever come out on Deadbeat almost ten years ago.


14) THE CITY YELPS HALF HOUR LP. This came out to little fanfare in late 2016, via UK label(s) Horsey Music and Odd Box Records, but it still has a steady place in the rotation, even getting more as the summer began. The latest evolution of British DIY rock’n’roll via NZ-pop, lo-fi but not lacking in heart, it’s been the record I put on to get back up when I’m feeling out of sorts. If you didn’t know yet this is The Hand from Real Losers’ new outfit, but there’s nary an iota of that band’s sound to be found here. I read somewhere that they’re “Swell Maps meet The Clean” and I’ll roll with that, as it’s better than anything I’m going to come up with, and it scratches that itch for genuine UK eccentricity that I used to depend on Hygiene for (though there’s not much in common between the two aside from my arbitrary mental tic). I’m fairly sure this is about to sell out of a second press (if it hasn’t already), so you should probably start looking here….

13) TAIWAN HOUSING PROJECT ‘Veblen Death Mask’ LP. Hotly anticipated LP delivers in all ways possible, and I love when everyone I follow on Instagram is posting pictures of them playing live and talking about how amazing they are and I’m sitting over here in the middle of nowhere and not seeing them live at all. At least I have the record, and the band now includes Kevin Boyer, adding Tyvek to the list of bands they’re related to that I hold in high regard. And speaking of relations, there’s a Writhing Squares connection too, whose LP I’ll plug one last time in preparation for their entry into the next Richie Records singles series (I’m talking Squares here, not THP – and to encourage further confluence of interests, the series also includes a David Nance single this time as well). Mark Feehan and Kilynn from Little Claw are the heart of this truly super group (oooff), you can discover here if you’re not yet aware.

12) CHEATER SLICKS “Destination Lonely” LP – the Slicks will forever have a place in the power rankings, and ‘Destination Lonely’ is perhaps the most important record of their long and spectacular discography. Their second full length, it marks the beginning of their decision to remain a trio after first Alpo and then Merle Allin departed the band and the inability to recruit any suitable replacements on bass left them as a trio. So began the Shannon/Shannon/Hatch line-up that still soldiers on today. Originally released on the Australian Dog Meat label, the LP documents the beginnings of what were their most productive years, with three LPs and seven singles (or thereabouts) coming in this fruitful 1991-1995 period. ‘Destination Lonely’ contains the blueprint for future releases, an unbeatable mix of covers and originals played through over-amped guitars with Dana and Tom sharing vocal duties. This is the band just beginning their long run, hitting on every possible cylinder, plunging headlong into an almost 30 year long “career” without looking backwards or forwards, to this day still unable to quench their thirst for playing the most desperate and desolate garage-rock this world has ever heard. Almost Ready has stepped in where other labels have dropped the ball and revitalized the Slicks vinyl catalogue with reissues such as this. I was able to see the band play a triumphant record release show in NYC for this reissue, and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit I got a little misty eyed thinking about these guys being up there doing what they’re doing. Admirable, and a good band to steal a page or two from for your own life….go get yours (and more) via the ARR site, and you might even be able to distract people from looking at your ugly mug with a t-shirt featuring the Dan Clowes artwork on it…

11) NWI – or the lack of “Marky” bands in 2017. This stuff is still on my mind though…So is the CCTV 7″ piece of paper going to be the last gasp of what was the hottest bed of punk of the past couple of years? I guess that DLIMC VHS kinda counts too, that “band” was cool. Think about this – the CCTV single on Lumpy has gone through four pressings now. The numbers dont lie, they were a great band. But things have gone eerily quiet. No more DLIMC installments. No new bands. No Marky. No news via Jimmmy from Youtube (who has a radio show now by the way: just perfect). Christi Calfornia hasn’t returned the last letter I mailed her. What gives? Here’s what I want to think: Coneheads and CCTV are still together and playing shows all the time in NWI basements, Big Zit and Ooze never really broke up, but the whole scene has gone on 100% local lockdown and total radio silence, and no one except the NWI punks know any better. SECRET SCENE!

10) SKULL CULT “Stab Me With A Knife” – so, I dont usually go for synth-punk, but this crew has a little something going on here. This “Stab Me With A Knife” song is A FUCKING HIT, I TELL YOU. And I won’t lie and tell you it’s all good, because it’s not – aside from a couple other tracks from the Vol. 1 tape (“Feel It Die” and “Black Mask”), it’s all rather annoying synthola garbaggio, especially the Vol. 2 stuff – grating keyboard sounds and a little bit of these vox go a long way. Thankfully they only write minute-long songs, and the 1:05 of “Stab Me…” is absolutley perfect – aggressive, catchy and the vox in this instance are genuinely fantastic – that puke sound he makes after the first chorus is the most punk 3 seconds of the year. Both the tapes are sold out, but those Erste Theke Tontraeger (someone translate that for me, please) guys put both tapes on one 7″, and that Weirdly Label is doing a US press as well with alternate artwork (I think two pressings is overkill, but then again this song is REALLY good, too bad there’s so much chaff with the wheat here). As an aside, ETT are supposedly doing an ISS LP, so I will give them mucho credit for being the only label thus far to sack up for vinyl for one of the best bands in the world. Weird label though. Secondly, Skull Cult are from Bloomington, IN whose resident punks are trying to pick up the slack now that Marky has apparently disappeared.

09) “Horrendous New Wave” LP – the latest from Lumpy Records, which is a concept compilation – all of these “no name new wave bands” are from the minds of players you’ll be familiar with if you’re a fan of the Lumpy roster (which I’m just assuming you are). The line-up includes Rik, Jake Robertson (Ausmuteants), Arielle from Janitor Scum/Glitter, BB Eye (Lumpy + Olivia from Warm Bodies), Gibbous, a Muff Diver, the guy from Nosferatu and “many many more”! I have to think The Wad, The Stranger and Mr. Wax might be in the dugout too? It’s hard to tell, and as I type this I’m getting excited all over again – I mean, this is a GREAT idea combined wth a GREAT label full of freaks. But to be honest, it’s a bit of a mixed bag’o’nuts. Sixteen tracks. Only one band gets two tracks (Western Civ) and they just happen to be one of the bands that suck. Really, there is some truly horrendous new wave on this, Lumpy is not lying. Half of the fun here is trying to figure out who is who (and who dropped the turds in the punchbowl), and I have to think I scored rather poorly on my guesses. But let’s not get bogged down in the negative, let talk posi here. And the most positive thing here is the lead-off shot on Side B, a little dinger called “I Am Not A Nixon” from an outfit called Leaders, and it is without a doubt one of the best songs of the year, and what you want to hear out of new wave or synthy punk or whatever you want to call it. Massive sound, huge drums, huge riff, not some squiggly keyboard shit, but sheer brute force synth, with a hook too. Lyrics are hilarious but it’s played straight and it’s one of my favorite things right now. Whoever this is wins the fucking contest (my guess is this one is Rikky and pals). Not much can stack up to that jam, but there’s a good half dozen or more keepers here – Shux (I’m not even sure there’s a synth on this one, but it is definitely punk), Protoculture (sounds like the Leaders guy(s)), Dutytoot (sounds like Shux and also sounds like it was sent here from LA 1983), Knobnoster Band (pretty sure this is BB Eye), Mick Flannel (probably the best “name” here, more of a spoken word weirdo thing that I like very much), and Neuro Bliss (a song about unsubscribing to MRR!) are all winners. The Dequantize instrumental that opens is good too – sounds like the soundtrack for To Live and Die in LA if it was reimagined as a Nintendo cart. There’s four or five real stanky ones here too, those Western Civ tracks chafed my ass in particular – just too fucking cutesy/quirky/lame, but hey there’s always a few. But overall, this thing is truly interesting and an event of an LP – not just music, but the concept, and digesting how each of them made what they thought of as “new wave” and how some soared and some crashed. Lumpy’s got himself a good bunch of pals here, a real Ralph Records for the now or something. And that’s what encourages me to keep listening, the excitement of hearing what these kids from all over the country do when they come together like this – it’s inspiring. And you should pump “I Am Not A Nixon” as soon as you can. Screened covers with art that I have to think the Janitor Scum person did. Oh yeah, and it’s sold out you boners…Lumpy put two tracks up for you to sample, and it actually fitting that one is that killer Shux track and the other is Western Civ, so you get the good and the bad….

08) THE CAVEMEN. My fascination with these Cavemen continues. And for the record just one more time, I’m speaking of The Cavemen from Boston, MA – not the Cavemen from New Zealand who moved to London and have a bunch of records out on various lo-fi garage labels. People seem to think those guys are wild and primitive, but Boston’s neanderthals are the definition of PRIMITIVE. I haven’t heard shit-fi like this in some time, just completely blown-out thud. My point of reference keeps coming back to Black Time, if BT were American and really dumb and had absolutely no artistic aspirations. The ‘Band in BC’ cassette (see, they’re funny too) was tops of the tapes in 2016, and now they have somehow convinced a little label called Weirdly Records to press the best of that tape on a must-have 7″ – seven tracks with minimal band info, and reproducing the classy art from the tape. If you don’t believe me just give “Ca Ca (My Wall)” a spin and thank me later. Order from the band(camp) or the label.

07) KALEIDOSCOPE. See reviews section for further commentary.

06) GG KING “Another Dimension” 7″ – for as hot as the ATL is right now (and it’s getting spicier by the day), let’s not forget who the elder statesman is, the godfather of ATL-punk, the Goat Ravisher himself. GG is the Burzum of the scene (well except for the murder and arson part), the template for which almost everything else is built upon/influenced by/rated in relation to. There’s most definitely an Atlanta-punk sound, and it’s undeniably been shaped by King’s work dating all the way back before the Carbonas even (see Termbo Issue #3). This latest record is a redo of “Another Dimension” from the LP – why? I can’t answer that, but it sounds streamlined and perfected – you know, GG is a perfectionist and probably just had to go back and nail this one to the cross like he originally intended to. Then there’s this “Make A Movie” thing, which is sort of a rap/spoken word collage – and you can get the ‘Full Dub Edit’ on the bandcamp, yo. The 7″ version gets cut a bit short, but you probably shouldn’t mind. B-Side is “Gilliam Park” which is another classic GG dark-punker, with an all star backing band including our pal NG and some sick backwards guitar – remember when GG was entertaining us with things like the “Two Track Party Pack”? Well, hes still entertaining us, but now it’s with this fully formed beast of a serious hard-blackened punk band. Is there a more fully realized “band”/artist out there? It’s perfect. Excellence of execution. And another instance where he borrows a bit from punk ghosts past (“We’re the kids…” is a hauntingly familiar refrain). It doesn’t get much better than this folks. And while we’re at it, there’s a laundry list of other Atlanta punk records you should be feeding on: Mutual Jerk 7″ (DIY kinda freakiness), any of these Nag records (even if the artwork blows, these are still quality punking tunes), the final(?) Joint D= LP titled ‘Intelligence’ (and that copy of Atlas Shrugged is being burned in GG King’s driveway) from the guy who unites NC with ATL and gives me a reason to shoehorn in the fact that ISS have that ‘Endless Pussyfooting’ tape out on State Laughter…and that upcoming Uniform LP should be a real nut buster if they keep up with that tape from a bit ago. By the way, test press version of this is delicious, but that anti-dimension sticker on some of the regular versions is a must-have too. Get in where you fit in.

05) PUBLIC TRUST “The Leper” EP – man, Boston has really surprised me lately. I’m usually no fan of the HC scene there, but their punk division is doing great things of late. This fucking Public Trust 7″ man, it’s incredible. The best record Unnatural Axe never wrote. With extra meathead on the vox. I have no info on this band other than the singer from Boston Strangler is involved (and possibly more Stranglas) – is it all him, or is he just the brains behind the band? “The Leper” is the hit here, a total anthem about being afflicted, but all four songs are smokers (yes, even “Everyone Smokes in East Boston”) and you won’t get better value out of a 7″ right now. I can’t believe more people aren’t as nutty about this as I am….want some aesthetic proof that this one is legit: the sleeve/record contains visual references to Joe Spinell and Combat Shock…check em out if you don’t believe me. Then head over to Feel It for your copy.

04) MOZART “Nasty” EP – ‘The Tick’ was a pretty cool tape and all, but this 7″ EP is pure mania, probably the best hardcore record released in 2017 thus far. The alliance with Iron Lung makes sense, as these are all individuals to whom integrity means a great deal, and that makes the tenacity of this record that much more satisfying. The people involved are serious about this punk shit – not that this is some overtly political thing, or has some kind of scene agenda – but it’s fanatical and raging music for a reason. And the vocals are insane, intense and right on – matched by the aesthetic tenacity of each one of these records (500 of them?!) having a hand painted “blob” on them, which I’m sure the person(s) drawing them on thought more about than most of us think about punk in a month – Sidenotes: the related Thrilling Living label has released that Warm Bodies 7″ I love so much, and I’m getting real antsy to hear this gSp 12″, which is Tobi Vail, Layla Gibbon and Marissa Magic, and not a tribute to the UFC fighter you loved to hate. Further sidenote – Grace is leaving MRR, which gives me a mild panic attack when I think about it. Not that I really have a horse in this race anyway, but MRR has once again become the best punk zine in the world (not just by default) under her guidance and I fear what might happen now…I believe the only logical course of action is to immediately install Brace Belden in the coordinators chair the second she leaves MRR HQ.

03) STEFAN CHRISTENSEN “Shake off The Village” LP – Stefan’s first official vinyl LP as a solo act, and coming off what might have been his best set of songs yet on the ‘Open Day” EP gave me some high expectations. Nine songs that document Stefan drifting further into the waters of improv and experimentation, getting closer to the Xpressway sound than ever (whereas I might have pegged him closer to Flying Nun in the immediate post-Estrogen Highs days), with a heavy dose of Shepard-esque noise wrangling still abundant. Some of this outright harsh (“Over Scrawl” sounds like twisting metal) and some of this is outright beautiful (the expanse of “Brass City Pt. II” – a recurring locale from the previous EP as well), and he still lovingly slips a genuinely warm “rock” song in there like a note slid under the door (“Norton II”). “8AM Sharp” could conceptually be linked to Shadow Ring in its construction, but far more fleshed out and American. The stylistic jumps from song-to-song are never jarring, but more collage-like, in a way that still reminds me of Sebadoh in aesthetic if not sound. “Off Minor” is a rather fitting ender, full of guitar shredding and a little tape manipulation, Stefan with a foot on both sides of the fence (rock vs art?) and pulling it off wonderfully. Available for preorder now.

02) WARM BODIES. See reviews section for commentary. I’ve been told this band is the real deal live as well, which saddens me as I will probablly never get a chance to see them. Their two singles and cassette releases have been the highlight of 2017 thus far.

1) THE COWBOY LP – No one mourns the disappearance of Homostupids more than me. No one. Which makes the emergence of The Cowboy that much more reassuring. 2/3 of the ‘stupids plus 1/2 of Pleasure Leftists. Think of it perhaps as a more refined evolution of what Josh and Steven were doing in America’s Greatest Rock’n’Roll Band. Perhaps a bit more finessed, due in part to Drew’s more Charlie Watts approach as compared to Dale’s Keith Moon. Both are great. One of the big differences is that you can actually decipher what Josh is singing – and an actual lyric sheet helps too. That being said, this is just what the doctor ordered – more good old Americano rock’n’rollo with that distinct Clevo flavor. Higlights include “My Champion”, “Sneaking Leaker” (!) and “The Cowboy”, but of course there’s nary a dud in this dirty dozen. Whether or not this record is actually called ‘Back on the Farm’ is up for discussion, but the artwork by Josh’s daughter is definitely the visage of titular cowboy. Fun fact – this record almost came out on Smart Guy, then didn’t, and good ol’ Fashionable Andy saved the day. Cassette version will also be available on Blow Blood some day soon for those of you who favor the people’s format.

For a full list of Power Rankings for this quarter, send a SASE to Termbo HQ. We’ll be back with those tapes and an interview before you know we’re gone.


Okay, time to start digging out from under this mountain of reviews and get the Termbo machine back in running order. Here’s a link to latest reviews section, some of which are embarrassingly late, some of which are surprisingly timely. Hope you find something you like in there, old or new or both. I had to cheat a little bit to get caught up further, as I resort to the “column” format below to clean up some stuff I had left on the desk. I’ll be doing the same with a XXL sized stack of LPs next. If you sent something in and it’s missing drop us a line and we’ll figure it out. Other than that, it’s onwards and upwards – more reviews, a demos/tapes section soon after and I’ll finally be putting the finishing the finishing touches on Termbo print issue #4 and other paper goods. All that and more from the Loki Label and friends really soon.

(Again, go check out this big ol page of new reviews here before or even after you’ve read what’s below.)

Might as well start with the best 45 label in the land, Total Punk. TIMMYS ORGANISM finally make an appearance on the roster with their latest offering coming off their LP on Third Man, and this one sounds like Vulgar might be dusting off old Clone Defects tracks (which is fine by me). “Lick Up Your Town” is a little sleazy lyrically (“Powder your garden with my fertilizer!”) and is a huge sounding mid-tempo rocker, with Vulgar’s jet-engine squeal guitar sound stealing the show. Flip is “Sweet Tooth” with a lascivious spoken intro that leads into a blues stomper with Timmy V emoting equally on vox and strings. Now that’s rock’n’roll. Also makes good use of the full sleeve rubber stamp with a nice eye catching design. BLACK ABBA’s (or just Bl’Abba if you’re on friendly terms) second single starts with their best tune to date, “Lost Dog”, a somewhat minimal sounding lo-fi punker with a wandering synth line and less-is-more solo – great lyrics too. “The Manager” is a winner as well, sounds loose and has a more DIY/artpunk feel, the doubled-up vocals add some disorientation and again it seems as if that synth is just meandering around the song, and it works. The tunes sound very organic yet still weird, and the simple construction benefits from the added nuances of the little things they do right – and I swear that guitar solo part is lifted from somewhere, but I just can’t place it…I’ll be sure to let you know when I figure it out. Best band member name on insert: Cher II.

LYSOL have been in heavy rotation around TB HQ all winter, and I’ll fess up to being a little late catching up after the tapes. The two songs on this Total Punk 7” were also the L.I. tour tape if you picked that up – “Wired” b/w “Knucklehead” and they’re both hot enough to singe your eyebrows. Am I in the majority thinking Lysol is better than Freak Vibe? Rob Vertigo, can I get a ruling on this? “Knucklehead” reminds me some of Brown Sugar and Mognoloid in its rock’n’roll + hardcore approach – there’s a piano in there right? – it’s just a real crusher. “Wired” is more of the same (yes I know this is the A-Side), another powerbomb rocker that demands repeat listens despite the bruising that might cause. These tunes sound more aggro than the stuff on the ‘On the Corner’ LP (which is a great record nonetheless) and I dig it. These cats are probably in the top dozen or so current acts out there right now, and if I wouldn’t have had my head up my ass for most of 2016 I’d of touted them more. So as to not let that mistake happen again though, I’m going to tell you that this FNU CLONE 12″ is amazing right off the bat. The head FNU has done away with the Ronnies (or at least left them on the other side of the country) and recorded all of this by himself, and it might be even more insane than ‘Saddle Up’ was. The sounds of technology revolting against you, hard digital punk, raw rock in general. Drum machines are brutally run through their programs, synthesizers are spliced into human DNA, effects pedals are abused and grafted onto voiceboxes. The A-Side is weird enough, but the B-Side of this thing is a fucking beast. The clone’s humanity might come through a bit more on this side, but it’s no less eccentric. The three song run from “Shake the Hand” through the Motorhead cover essentially reinvents weird-punk. Science fiction come to low-budget life. Incredible. One of the best records of the year thus far, and I cannot stop with that B-Side. I think it has injected some sort of binary virus into my head at this point. Must be heard to be believed, the only thing it somewhat reminds me of is Gary Wrong, if that guy was a cyborg monster instead of an analog wizzard – but it has a similarly busy all-hands-on-holodeck approach. FNU Clone has really outdone himself here, and I’m of the belief FNU Ronnies were one of the best things going while they were active – like I said, this thing pushes the boundaries even further into space and time and just raised the bar considerably. (www.floridasdying.com)

Know what? This PLAYBOY 12” from Negative Jazz is also the best record to come out in 2017 thus far. I cannot stress ho much I enjoy this one enough. I’ve listened to it 100 times by now easily and it keeps getting better. A four song 12” 45rpm monster called “Celebration” that weighs in just under 18 minutes or so, it’s unlike much else out there. Flipper is the no-brainer comparison, but it’s true – rubbery, gooey, sex beat/sax bleat, smart and degenerate lyrics. This is not some rehash sludgefest though, there’s something airy about the sound, almost spacey. Vocals are perfect, they sound strained but he’s not really yelling, the delivery is fittingly odd, and he’s often answered by the sax (as on “Outside”). It’s truly weird, in that I haven’t heard much like it around – not some predictably weird-punk stock moves you’ve come to expect. Pretty sure there’s no guitar player, did I mention that? Anyway, these dudes are from Montreal and are the best thing outta there in some time – and Playboy have an Omega or two or more in their ranks from what I’m told, and I like Omegas, but this Playboy shit blows them away. Artwork matches the bizarre tunes to a tee and thank god for the lyric sheet that’s full of more strangeness and charm – I’ve been trying to figure the words out for a good 2-3 months, and I wasn’t even close. Go buy this immediately, please. (negativejazz.bigcartel.com)

Now let’s talk random Euros. The Mastermind Records label outta Denmark almost always delivers (see Narcosatanicos and Angkor Wrack along with their fondness for Clevo-tardation via F/S and Trichecos), and this SMERTEGRAENSENS TOLDERE 7” is good enough that I took the time to spell that fucking name right (although I’ll be damned if I know how to format that AE as the same letter shit), they’re from Aarhaus (talk about a cool name for a city), they blow through seven songs in about seven minutes, and I swear it sounds like HFOS if they weren’t joking around – bad reference I know, but I have no clue as to a Danish HC band to relate them to – it’s slightly metallic, super burly, maybe a little 9ST fury in there. One of the Cola Freaks is in this band? Would’ve never guessed. Monstrous. The tasteful picture of a boxcutter on the cover sums up their aesthetic rather well. (mastermindrec.tictail.com)

From Denmark we wander over to the UK, where shambolic and quirky DIY records are coming out like it’s 1982 all over again. Firstly we have THE STICKS ‘No Sustain’ EP, their first record in a few years and it’s rather decent stuff. I remember not caring for a 12” of theirs, but I can handle this – they go for the more rhythmic and bass-led approach, not quite lo-fi either, these dudes know their way around a studio. Reminds me some of Yummy Fur as well as the usual Messthetics – scratchy guitars over locked-in grooves and then sprinkled with weird touches and deep voiced dudes talking their lyrics. Very enjoyable though, and limited to 300 in a risographed sleeve with insert on Market Square – who did the first Suburban Homes 7″ if you want some references.(marketsquarerecordings.bandcamp.com). Next we have VITAL IDLES from Glasgow with a two-songer of female-fronted DIY-pop that I’m really digging the A-Side of – “My Sentiments” is all sharp guitars and a lurkingly heavy bassline, Jessica Higgins’ vox are a delight – talked but in what I feel like is a real smartass way – it’s a bit of raw punker even. “The Garden” on the flip couldn’t be more different. A dramatic slow turn/ballad with violin and trumpet accompaniment, sort of sad-sounding but brightened up by that horn – a quaint recreation of a summer day perhaps, but I again get the sense Jessica is being a little sarcastic, which is why I like it. A swell little single either way (Not Unloved – notunloved-at-gmail.com). Over now to South London for this GOAT GIRL 7”, which I’m mentioning because the A-Side is called “Country Sleaze” and is an ode to Wallers & Co. (“Wallers find me you country tease” she croons!?) – and while I think it sounds more like a tune from the True Detective soundtrack than DIY, I do appreciate that four girls from London are this into the Country Teasers in 2017. B-Side is called “Scum”, is straight C&W, and I will say that at the least this girl has a nice smoky voice. On Rough Trade, you should at least hear “Country Sleaze” just to say you did.

OK, enough of Europe, let’s talk the latest in American Guitar Rock. Sophomore Lounge is the name of the label, and they just pulled the pin on a double-headed 7” bomb – one from the grunts known as TROPICAL TRASH, their first waxing since the highly regarded LP on Load (there was some primo tape and such action in between there as well, talking about the ‘Live at the Fillmore’ cassette and that “Big Game John Cage” thing) and the big change to the line-up card here is that they now have Bim “Obnox” Thomas on drums/gtr to make them even more of a force of jazzfry destruction. ‘Decisions Empty Nest’ is the name of the EP, three songs recorded by Maccarrone in Clevo, which is an alliance I fully support. “Early Wish” covers the A-Side and it’s just evil. Sounds like a short-circuting organ crying in the background under a tractor beam bass sound and some vocals that they’ve added some satanic effects to. Devastating. Think of ‘UFO Rot’ with Bim destroying the drum kit. Think about it. That’s what we have here. B-Side picks up right where the A-Side left off with the ending of “Early Wish” then “Exit Dust” pulls a weapons-grade riff out of the arsenal and then things start getting good and loose on “Troubleshot”. A real mind eraser from some of the top guys in the game. And if that wasn’t good enough, they’ve paired it with the latest 7” from our boys MORDECAI. “What is Art” is four songs, the two on the A-Side come from the ‘Abstract Recipe’ sessions with the “classic” Eli/Holt/Gavin line-up and “Seeing In” is an incredible bit of Shakey-esque hook-rock, and Holt ponders the big question of the title track over a steady groove that these guys lock into in their own way, lots of guitar slash. As always, magic happens. The B-Side is played via a truncated line-up of Gavin and Holt and recorded in the living room. According to Holt’s notes, this was a sort of experiment in deconstruction, in particular replacing drums with a cooking pan. “Spite” is built on that primitive drum idea with both Gavin and Holt getting free on the guitars and falls into place and apart in wonderful fashion. “What is Over” was inspired by Ego Summit and a hangover and is more of an abstract folky-jangler with continued wandrin’ guitar work. This record really made a shitty day into a great one when it arrived, if you need some evidence of the mystic power Mordecai and their music have. In my mind, the most remarkable band we have around today. With ‘Abstract Recipe’ and this 7” out now, the boys have fulfilled their yearly recording quota, and with all three of our heroes now spread out in different towns we’re left to wonder what happens next. I’m hopeful we’ll possibly see them live this year while school is out. Both of these records come in silkscreened pocket sleeves and in a hurtfully limited edition of 300 so keep your eyes peeled. (www.sophomoreloungerecords.com)

CHOKE CHAINS are the latest Thomas Jackson Potter outfit, joined by a Chinese Millionaire, Lindsey from No Bails and a guy named Chizz (!). “Cairo Scholars” is high octane garage-punking, maybe even qualifying as action rock, and has a real nasty solo. The flip is a cover of the opening track from the Deviants third record (“Billy the Monster”) that they give a big low-end revamp. Mastered for maximum garage turkeyness by Tim Warren, typically solid stuff from Potter. (www.houndgawd.com) Speaking of solid hands who have been making great music for 20+ years covering songs that are nearly 50 years old, there’s a new 7” from JAMES ARTHUR’S MANHUNT where he blows through The Grounhogs’ “Cherry Red” making it sound like a Texas acid-rock classic instead of UK blueshammering – actually it sounds a little like James Gang too, but that might have something to do with the fact I listened to “The Bomber” like ten times today. It’s hard to tell, but Manhunt really stretch out on it and give it a good shaking. That’s the B-Side, on the frontside JA actually does an Angry Samoans cover! Proving he’s a smart cat he does the Turner classic “Staring at the Sun” from the oft and unrightfully maligned ‘STP Not LSD’ LP. It’s a rousing and quite ballsy rendition. (www.spacecaserecords.com) To continue our old-timers paragraph here, I was certainly not expecting a new SLICING GRANDPA record in the mail. If you’re unaware, SG have been going for nearly 20 years now as the experimental recording project of John Laux, current Musk-man and former Tractor Sex Fatality. This one’s ominously titled ‘Finyl Vinyl’ and is a four banger – “Fake Mistake” is my fave, with a trebly shitbox recording, vocals that sound like he’s using a tin can and a piece of string, and a handful of swirly echo effects and things – a truly DIY sound and nearly hypnotic. Actually “I Showed Up” on the B-Side is now my favorite, because I’m arguing with myself as to whether it sounds more like Jandek or the Shadow Ring. The wonderfully titled “No Toilet” is an “instrumental” finisher that sounds like incidental music from a SOV horror movie. If you’ve never heard SG before, here’s your chance. (elmn8r-at-hotmail.com)

Keeping things retro, I received correspondence from the fine folks responsible for the Savage Damage Digest regarding a warehouse find of dead stock Richmond Records singles. If you’re unaware (as I was), Richmond was a New Wave label active from 1979-82 whose flagship act was Psychotic Pineapple. What they have available are the GLORIA BALSAM novelty record made “famous” by Dr. Demento – Gloria does a wacky cover of “High Hopes” and a tune about her missing dog “Fluffy” backed by Rubinoos and Pineapples. Woof?! Somewhat better than that is the RAL PHENO 7” (backed by Psychotic Pineapple of course), another of the New Wave novelty/weirdo persuasion, but not nearly as annoying as Gloria – “Let’s Get Stupid” is actually a pretty good piano pounder/sax wailer that wouldn’t be out of place on the soundtrack to an Eighties teen comedy. But the best of the bunch is THE IDYLLS 7”, an obscure power-popper/waver that has a pretty solid A-Side in “Why” that sounds a bit like an edgier Blondie. “White Lies” on the flip is a ballad that is interesting in a car crash way. (richmondrevisited.bigcartel.com)

Sticking with the era, some reissues of note. Firstly, Last Laugh have THE DOGS “Slash Your Face” 7” for us, a KBD ripper of the highest quality. Strong like viet cong. A legit from the masters job with pocket sleeve that’s of a far higher quality than the previous “reissue”. And in case you haven’t noticed, in between KBD bonzers, LL has been steadily releasing quality INCREDIBLE KIDDA BAND singles, with “Bullet In My Heart” being the fourth in the series – both songs are choice late Seventies studio tracks, and did Kidda Band ever write a bad song? (www.almostreadyrecords.com) There are few records more unexplainable than the TAPEWORM 7”, which Death Vault has just officially reissued for the first time (forget that shitty bootleg), with the added bonus of a four page insert with liners from Fuzz Box Flynn himself. Still no sign of “Fuzz Bassolo” though! I shouldn’t have to discuss how great this record is with you, but if there is some way one of you don’t know about it, I do envy you getting to experience “Break My Face” for the first time. Surely one of the 7” reissues of the year, Death Vault really does good work all around – BUT as if that wasn’t enough, DV also popped out a reish of the XTERMINATORS 7” as well, of “Microwave Radiation” fame and always memorable in my book for having some of the most ridiculous vocals – those nasally back-ups get me every time, and it’s certainly a killer tune besides. “Occasional Lay” on the flip is actually really good too (Break the Rules “good”) and has dumb back-up vocals too, thankfully. You should be able to get these from Florida’s Dying…

As a sidenote, the compiling of this installment was predominately soundtracked by the WRITHING SQUARES LP “In the Void Above” which came out late last year on Siltbreeze. It was in my Top Ten LPs, but in case you missed that I want to mention it again, it’s that good. Absolutely magnificent American space-rock built on bass and sax that rocks straight-up at times, then dips into Hawkwind-like grooves, kraut-rock runs, electronic rock explorations, it’s all very otherworldly and done with class including the best flute part on a rock record in recent memory. I’ve been listening to it a few times a week for at least six months and I’m still addicted to it. From some of the minds behind Taiwan Housing Project (whose LP is out any day), and Purling Hiss/Spacin’. Check em out on bandcamp if you don’t believe me.

Again, if you missed it or are a bit slow on the uptake, there’s a another huge pages of new reviews here.

That’s all for now kids, we’ll be back in a few with more reviews (LPs mostly now) and some zine talk on top. Tapes after that – thanks everyone.


Hello everybody. It’s been too long, I know. Here are quite a few reviews of records that we’ve been compiling for some time now. Please note that further reviews/commentary on releases (some also included here, some not) are/were available via the 2015 recap from the staff as well Termbo print issue #3. I’m trying my damnedest to get caught up and organized for more frequent spring/summer updates. It’s well known the worst thing about zines is the editor making excuses why the new issue is late, and even worse than that is saying about how lame it is then doing it anyway. Let’s just say that it’s been a pretty rough stretch at Termbo HQ. Forging onward, demos/tapes are getting ready to go as we speak, and there’s another heap of record reviews coming soon as well, along with an interview with Marcia Clifton of The Klitz. And Termbo print #4 ready for summer beach reading. Apologies to all for the tardiness, drop the editor a line with comments/questions/outrage. RIP STABB.



Preface: in an effort to get current with reviews, we’re going to do some blogging for a bit to try something new and spread it out some (and buy some more time). This time around it’s playing catch-up with zines that people have been nice enough to send us, followed with the first of some regional band/label review sections. To start it’s New Haven, CT. Following this will be an All Canada section, then a Locals Only section (meaning WNY/Rochester), then an all reissues section focusing on 7″es. I’ll go out on a limb and say this should all happen in the next two weeks, followed with a lengthy traditional-format reviews section. In print news, Termbo #3 and Giant Sized Best of Termbo will be out in time for the holidays. On with the show….

PRO TIP: a good many of these zines are available via FEEL IT distro along with a good selection of tapes and records as well.

CASTING COUCH – formed from the ashes of Rubberneck, with the same driving forces (Miranda Fisher and Jon Chamberlin) behind it with the roles reversed (I believe) – this being Miranda’s vision and more text based than Jon’s more photo-driven zine. Already on to issue #2, which is exceptional and already shows the zine upping the ante from issue #1 (which was mighty fine in its own right – hey, any zine that is foolish enough to think interviewing the Termbo guy is a good idea…). Issue 2’s highlights include an interview with Ned Hayden that would make you believe he’s a pretty good guy (love ya Ned!) at least until he gets in an anti-Gerard Cosloy rant (and classy move on CC’s part in granting Gerard a rebuttal), wherein things get pretty interesting and as whole this interview includes far more Liz Phair content than I was expecting. I will say that the Gerard vs. Ned argument gives one food for thought – or at least a few laughs – in thinking what your own part in the demise of punk rock has been – and I’m fairly sure we’re all guilty. The Ryan Richardson interview further illuminates the life’s work of one of the nicest guys in the game, a man who is perhaps the only innocent one in the who-is-killing-punk debate. Another very nice installment in the zine’s angle to try and talk to some of the people active in the “scene” who actually aren’t in bands. The Home Blitz interview is very welcome and gets us up to speed with Daniel Dimaggio now that ‘Foremost and Fair’ is available and the band seems to be back in the ring after a bit of a hiatus – and the conversation is very DD, in that you become aware that even though we know DD/HB is some of the greatest of modern music, as an artist there is always self-doubt and obsession over the presentation of art. It’s what makes people like Daniel’s music fascinating and enjoyable. On the other side of the spectrum you have an interview with Foster Care, who sound like a bunch of obnoxious dicks and probably put as much thought into their LP as Daniel put into one guitar track on his new record. But hey, some bands are all about blustering around chaotically and some aren’t – we need both kinds. New Zealand’s ambassador the US Michael McClelland contributes a piece about the worst-named band since Bed Wettin’ Boys, that being Girls Pissing on Girls Pissing, and while I’m not so much a fan it at least was an interesting read. And speaking of interesting reads, Sarim’s ‘Get Quapped’ column this issue is his most abstruse piece yet. I’m a big fan of Miranda’s reviews (and I like that she writes the whole section, as a consistent voice is a must for a worthwhile reviews) and agree with her most of the time – and I enjoy that she actually writes bad reviews when deserved, even for records on labels that advertise in the mag. I crave integrity in print, and I think that speaks volumes. (#2 available here, you might get lucky and find a distro/store with the last copies of #1)


BULL TONGUE REVIEW – Already up to issue #3 for BTR, the ‘Quarterly Journal of Post-Rock Cultural Pluralism’ whatever the fuck that means. The concept of each issue is Byron and Thurston continuing their Bull Tongue column from Arthur for the first dozen pages or so, covering everything from Termbo friendly fare (Total Punk releases, Termbo zine itself, 12XU and ITR releases, punk/garage reissues of note, etc.) to free jazz and noise and other kling-klangy things. The rest of the issue is one review/article apiece from their hand-selected group of cool dudes and gals who take on the task of talking about anything – absolutely anything at all: old and new movies, youtube videos, restaurants, live shows, other people, you name it. Some have contributed fiction, poetry, personal anecdotes. Real eclectic stuff, all with illustrations by Ted Lee (a nice touch, I have to say). Makes for a good read I suppose, but in the last one I just started skipping some of the more esoteric pieces. The highlights are of course Tom Lax talking about records you wished you owned, Chris D talking about movies you want to see, Michael Hurley talking about anything and really most of the reviews that talk about actual music/records. The cast will be familiar if you’ve ever read Forced Exposure or other zines of the time – Stigliano, Flowers, Gregg Turner (!), Ira Kaplan, Panter, Savage Pencil (!!), Tesco (!!!!) have all appeared, plus a dose of WFMU crew (Brian Turner’s have been some of the most enjoyable in the zine as a whole), Feeding Tube people (Owen Maercks is good too) and other celebrities (Albini, Alan Bishop, Carducci, Meltzer, Carver, Bruce Russell) and a lot of names you’ll recognize but not realize why. The issues seem to be getting thicker as we go on, and I will admit that each new issue is eagerly anticipated here at HQ. At first the side-stapled 8.5×11 format really bugged me, but I guess I don’t mind so much after all – it’s cheap and easy I suppose. I think #1 is already OOP, you should stay on top of this one. (Issue 4 out now via Forced Exposure)

CRETINS OF DISTORTION – C.O.D. #7 is out, and it is a whopper. As I’ve stated before, COD is hands down the best zine in America today, and the content in this latest one is to die for: Ron House/Mike Rep interview, a Robert Griffin interview (Scat Records) which focuses on Spike in Vain and hints at some reissues coming soon, a chat with the guy who did The Offense newsletter (I am in need of any/all copies of this rag, please get in touch if youre holding) and is just an all-Ohio issue overall, with talk about just about every band fron Ohio ever, filled with great pics and fliers. Oh yeah, and since the format changes every issue, this one is 8.5×14 – the long way with sidestaples. I love it. Layout is incredible cut-n-paste that packs the pages plus great use of hand-writing, rub-on letters and of course some rubber stamping. Issues 4 through 7 are still available via their store (and some come with companion tapes if you get in early) and I highly suggest you buy them all immediately. Rumor also has it that the early issues/best of will be reprinted at some point. #1 zine in the world. (Bug Cartel)


HARDCORE ARCHITECTURE – If you’ve been following the incredible Hardcore Architecture tumblr, which is one of the few uses of tumblr I actually “get”, you might like to know that Half Letter Press/Marc Fischer have some print available as well, including a zine version of some of the posts, plus “issues” that feature photographer Bill Daniel and Les Evans of Cryptic Slaughter thus far, along with other related pamphlets and prints. Impeccably done (some on risograph) and they make a nice physical companion to the site. (Half Letter Press)

STITCHES IN MY HEAD – SIMH #8 is the latest in this Australian-living-in-Cleveland penned zine, and since those two areas are probably most responsible for my favorite music of all time, I find some common ground here of course. This issue has a very short Gibbous interview that actually explains a lot about the mysterious Spotted Race project. Some show/record/zine reviews in column form, a handy discography of ADK/AA and Dogma releases (that I feel I’ve seen somewhere else…), a review of the ‘Who Are You Mr. Node’ film and an enjoyable Sex Dwarf tour diary (meaning I liked reading it even though I’m not that into the band). The Not Horriblefest coverage was disappointing (more talk about bands, less about how drunk you got) but overall I always dig this zine – it’s a quick read that is always high on enthusiasm. Get it via Feel It.


DEGENERATE – #16 is out and as always is a pleasure to read. I mean, I don’t even like Crudos that much, but I like reading about Martin’s life/stories. I always enjoy reading Sam’s intellectual reviews of punk and hardcore, for as eggheaded as they get there’s actual substance to them and they more often than not provide some interesting angles to instigate thought. Sam’s not afraid to poke or provoke (as witnessed via some verbal jabbing with both MRR and Laura Pall Mall) and his intellectual tangents regarding things that at surface level are just “dumb punk” certainly lead you down some thought provoking roads, and I find myself agreeing with his piece on the current state of print zines (plus he colors his essays with the right amount of punk reference points to not go totally academic – and thus totally snoozy) – relating it to Great Plains’ “Letter to a Fanzine” certainly wins my heart, but his argument is sound as well. Great review of the great film Nightcrawler and he speaks at length about the Noise in My Head book – again, I feel very similarly to his viewpoints, although I’m surprised he likes it as much as he does (i.e. more than me). He did make me think of it in the right context though – as a really big and expensive zine more than a definitive take on modern Australian rock. Anyway, a print issue of L’Etrenegade (the title for you pretentious folks out there) is always worth the few bucks – it might actually make you think about what we’re all doing here and why. (Some back issues still available and #17 in now out as well in the form of an LP from Mansion)

FORDAMNING FANZINE – Small-sizer out of Sweden that’s done very well, nice clean cut-n-paste layout and nice printing job. Much of the content is out of my comfort zone, dealing predominantly in noise and connected experimental sub-genres, but touching on at least a few items of interest in each issue. It’s well written enough to encourage a full read through though, and hey, I even learned a few things. The author shows great interest in the modern print zine and the reviews are much appreciated as are the heavy focus on cassettes. Most interesting pieces thus far are NZ-oriented, in particular the long article on Bruce Russell’s Corpus Hermeticum label in issue 7 and the short Sandra Bell appreciation that ends #5. And don’t get excited at the chances of reading a long Black Humor piece – this is one’s about blackhumoUr, a totally different kling-klang outfit (which might interest you more anyway, who knows). Good stuff though (#7 in particular) even though I’ve never heard of 75% of the bands/artists included before I’m always eager to expand my horizons, much like the author seems to be regarding the bands Termbo covers. (Dischi Del Barone)


THE ATOMIC ELBOW – There aren’t many wrestling fanzines around these days surprisingly enough (for now at least…and if there are some others to check out please let us know) which makes Atomic Elbow that much more necessary. It’s written by passionate fans in true fanzine style, which is much appreciated, and I heartily recommend every issue. The website lists content for each (I think he’s up to 14 now), and the reviews of old matches/PPVs are generally funny and a breeze to read. Interviews, coverage of the indies, comics and all that good stuff. The world needs more rasslin’ zines like this. By the way, have you looked at an issue of PWI lately? Total garbage. (Atomic Elbow blog/store)

THE ENTHUSIAST – Here’s a novel idea – a pdf zine you can e-mail the editor for the file of and then print your own copy. Genius. Issue 1 has an interview with Bay Area rapper City P, some weird shit about prime number spirals I’m not even sure is accurate, a Rob Vertigo appearance, The Swimming Pigs of Exuma (not a band), and a very good Q&A with Matt from Yellow Green Red/Pissed Jeans. Add in some reviews of old random records and some other weirdness and you should be e-mailing akatron-at-gmail.com for your copy now. PS – the editor is one of the guys from Yi if that helps. #2 out now –

PUS – “Cleveland only!” says the cover. I’m in! This thing is sloppy as hell which is a bit of a waste considering the cash the slick color covers and copies must have cost, but it’s from Clevo so it all makes some sort of dumb sense. Mostly hand-written, includes John Morton and Craig Bell interviews, comics and a hard to read but pretty good reviews section heavy on the hardcore. Highlight is of course the Food Fortunata interview by Mr. California. Wow. (nwardcomics-at-gmail.com)


SAVAGE DAMAGE DIGEST – I’ve been far too slow in reviewing these zines, but Savage Damage is another of the best out there. #4 has a KILLER Chuck Biscuits triple threat article, an excellent Beyond the Implode interview, blows the lid off The Subtractions (just reissued/unleashed on vinyl via Hozac), killer Eels content from that lunatic Brian McMahon and even an appearance by local Buffalo legend Mr. Ski-Mask. All of that stuff is so great I forgive Corey for the Giuda article. Also of note is the small size pub of an SF East Bay scene history (1950-1980) by Linstrum, which is #2 in the series – high quality stuff about obscure SF rockers and garagers that’s a pleasure to read. Available via microcosm publishing and the Savage Damage store.

JIM SHEPARD: NEGOTIATE NOTHING – We’ve reviewed some Nix Comics in the past – good stuff, they do a quarterly book and plenty of other neat stuff (check out Do You Remember Rock’n’Roll Record Stores written by Bela of Anyway Records), but this Jim Shepard issue (also written by Bela – and you should really follow his blog if you love Columbus, the Nineties and Jerry Wick) goes above and beyond. A recollection of Jim’s life, art and impact on the world via a part comic, part biographical short story, part fliers/photos/ephemera collection publication. I imagine that if you’re reading this Jim Shepard is already a part of your life and this is an essential document no matter how well or little you already know his story. Hopefully this inspires more reissues of his tapes and art/zines and perhaps gets the long awaited “return” of Iron Press moving along… (Nix Comics)


NO FRIENDS – The Lumpy/Ausmuteants split flexi that comes with the debut issue of this zine is fucking awesome….One of the (many, many) columnists in this issue talks about wrestling and makes a reference to Termbo via Layaway Butch’s profile pic of Dirty Dutch…?! The Ausmuteants interview (man these kids are everywhere) is pretty entertaining. The Scharpling interview is awkward. The Slugbugs interview is of interest as it’s Em from Cretins of Distortion (under the pseudonym Guitar Hero) and they talk about the zine and current Columbus/Clevo stuff a little. I don’t recognize 75% of the 300 bands reviewed/interviewed here, I’m guessing it’s gearing more towards the pop-punk and ex-emo bands spectrum, plus they give the Golden Pelicans a bad review further confusing me. I think this zine’s mission is to be an alternative/competitor to MRR based in the Midwest (the editor is a deposed former MRR coordinator) and the format (including 18! columnists and obligatory Martin Crudos content) and anyone-can-contribute vibe mirror Maximum with a dash of Pork (also interviewed). They appear to be in it for the long haul (they have tons of ads already –and kickstarter-ed this thing as well -) and are offering subscriptions (they are advertising a quarterly publication schedule) – including a Collector’s Scum (sic) sub – and I wish them luck. This one was worth it for the flexi at least. (No Friends)

EXTREME NOISE: 20 YEARS – I’m an asshole, this was sent to me over a year ago and it’s been lost in a stack of old wrestling magazines all this time. The Minneapolis store celebrated its 20th year in 2014, and this well done zine compiles the history of the shop through its workers, owners and customers. I found it more than interesting to read about a place I’ve never been to, as the record store as an essential part of a city’s scene is something we can all relate to. Most of us aren’t lucky enough to have a punk store with this sort of history in their town, but the EN story is encouraging and should inspire you to do whatever you can to keep your own local shop running and vital. The flier collection and live shots of in-store shows are of course much appreciated as is the Felix Havoc content (I’m a big fan). The story told is an interesting narrative but also a good resource for shop owners and punks in general – how they handled and survived the fluctuations in the business (CD boom, CD bust, “vinyl is back”, etc…), having a shop as a collective just seems impossible but they make it work somehow, navigating bizarre customers, thieves, the perils of used record buying and having the store as a show space as well make for good and informative storytelling. It should be noted that EN (via Felix) even assisted Buffalo’s finest store (Spiral Scratch) at its outset. If they still have copies available, get one – partial color, full size, 50+ pages – (Extreme Noise)

PHOTOS/ART/MISC: if you’ve ever been to one of the Total Punk Total Fuck Off fests you’ll understand the need to document what is probably the most essential “fest” of the time, put on by on the best dudes/labels in the game. In TOTAL FUCK OFF II: THE ZINE Jon Chamberlain of Rubberneck/Casting Couch does a great job of mixing posed band photos, action shots and candid photos of the crowd/players, making this a very worthwhile purchase whether you were there or not (sadly I was not in attendance this year) as you can smell the beer and feel the action via the visual story he skillfully tells. Plenty of Gary Wrong (impeccable sideburns) and Buck Biloxi (impeccable haircut) and it’s nice to see next generation kids like Lumpy mixing it up with our “old” pals. Two favorites: meeting of the minds between Ned Hayden and his band for the event and the candid shot of Rich and Denise in the crowd (congrats you guys) almost brings a tear to your eye (also includes Gary Wrong photobomb) (Rubberneck)……COOL DEATH CLUB is a collection of live shots from Tom Bradford (of the Cool Death label) documenting shows from 2009-2013. Since we’ll never see most of these bands, it’s a great way to put some visuals with the records, and the page of fliers is something I always love to see. Full size, 28 pages (available from Feel It)…Kappa Chow are Sackville’s finest band, and I don’t know if this zine has a name, but it’s full of Joe Chamandy’s artwork and scribblings/doodlings, and I liked it so much you should probably be seeing his work in Termbo soon. Full size, 28 pages. B&W (bug Joe for a copy at jchamandy-at-hotmail.com)…SOMETHING TANGIBLE is exactly what its title promises. I have at least a half dozen issues, and they’re sometimes puzzling, sometimes funny and always tangible. Get in touch if you’d like to know more about the people Greg plays horseshoes with (something.tangible.zine-at-gmail.com)….Montreal’s THE FAMINES have put out what they’re calling a “paper LP” – a large newsprint fold-out with graphics/info and a download code on it. Decent Canadian garage-band I suppose, still on the fence on whether this idea is the dumbest thing ever or a slightly novel idea…I guess it’s a little crafty… (thefamines.ca)


FRIENDS/RELATIONS: some Termbros have their own ventures going on these days, starting with GARBAGE DAY from one Rob Vertigo (RSF), compiling his fliers and artwork spanning 20 years. Obviously I’m a fan, and you should bug him to see if he has any more copies available – might be some Bugger Records t-shirts left too – ½ size, 48 pages, B&W (tsfvertigo-at-yahoo.com)….our old pal Get Mugged (BG) has a high quality issue of BUT ME ARE DIFFERENT still available, chock full of his odds and ends from the past few years. A healthy chunk of record reviews, shards of interviews with Love Pork, Narcs, Homostupids and Bloodclot Faggots, fliers, a heartstring pulling diary of the ill-fated Brown Sugar/Flying Trichecos tour (pairs well with the liners from the last BS 7”) and other philosophical investigations. I’ll be honest with you – this kid is pretty smart and one of my favorites to read along with DX and Annesley, and that’s high praise. Wish he would do some more now(Media Schlitz Empire)…. Good old Dave Hyde (DH) has a new one out called TONE DEAF ROOSTER (Destroy What Bores You has apparently been retired) and it was a real treat to find this one in the mailbox. Again, obviously DH is a favorite of mine, his writing is top notch and right up there with my faves of the somewhat-recent-vintage and his taste is impeccable – he’s the guy I often look to and find out about cool shit I don’t know shit about. This issue delivers with some great Half Japanese content (this one involving David Fair’s zines/booklets), Austin poster band Bodily Funktions, some demo reviews, Lllygod Ffyrnig appreciation, a Howard Werth appearance (!) and much more. Dave is one the best “zine guys” I know of (and someone I’ve stolen ideas from) and am proud to have his talents on the TB roster. The layout on this is fantastic (nice use of creative folds/paper size), you should bug him for a copy and help him with his wantlist. (cheaprewards-at-gmail.com)


NEWS & ENDNOTES: big news over at MRR: Brace Belden is back! And if you haven’t been paying attention, MRR has been very decent lately. BB somehow also got a byline in a recent issue of Thrasher via an interview with Total Control…speaking of Australians, there’s no use in my reviewing DISTORT issues, you should just know that it’s essential reading by now. The final issue of LIFE STINKS I LIKE THE KINKS is supposedly coming soon (or out already?) and look out for the DISTORT CLEVELAND zines as well (2 issues so far). Feel It is handling US distro for all DX publications at this point….in more Australian zine-stuff, DOWN & OUT went to a subscribers-only monthly newsletter for the year with a new full size issue slated for early 2016 (Down and Out blog)…NEONS fanzine #2 has been out for a bit from the cracked brain behind SEX BEFORE SUICIDE, and it should whet the appetite of all you out there wishing ANSWER ME! was still around. Sex, sleaze and violence, read it and feel dirty (Neons website) …finally, Jay Hinman looks to have shut the doors on yet another blog. DYNAMITE HEMORRHAGE is no more, and that goes for the print version as well. RIP.


NEW HAVEN, CT. The Elm City. Home of Yale University. I heartily suggest you check some things out before/after these reviews:

– First is Dave Brushback’s review of the same Estrogen Highs tapes, with the added bonus of some scans of the great Estrogen Highs interview he did in his zine INCREMENTAL DECREPITUDE.
– Secondly, Dave Hyde’s interview with Stefan and article on the whole Popeye’s/New Haven scene which also includes the amazing Stefan discography collage by Sarah Janet.
– Ever see/hear the Judge’s Cave Box Set? One of the more essential scene documents I’ve seen produced ever.
– Stay current on things via bookmarking IRRELEVANT FUTURE

Mountain Movers “Death Magic” LPmtlp
Dan Greene is sort of a New Haven institution I’m told, a founding member of late Nineties folky/indie-poppers Butterflies of Love (who achieved most of their acclaim in the UK). Sometime after that band’s dissolution Mountain Movers were formed as a vehicle for Greene’s prolific songwriting, as he’s apparently one of those guys who has albums and albums worth of material recorded at home on his 4 track. The band has gone through numerous line-up changes (this one includes members of Estrogen Highs and Medication), this is supposedly their fifth full length, and the first I’ve heard. ‘Death Magic’ is brimming with melancholic indie-rock that I’ve seen described as low-fi, but it’s a bit too clean to qualify under my definition of lo-fi. Quiet might be a better description, minimal even. Strong songwriting is apparent here, but I think an introduction to the band is better served by the three singles reviewed below. Scum stats: 250 copies. (RK)
(Safety Meeting // www.safetymeeting.net)

Mountain Movers – 3xSingles
A singles “series” of sorts from the Car Crash Avoiders label, one release a year from 2011-2013, each one housed in a full color company sleeve.
The first has “I Watch the Sea” which sounds far more potent here than it does on the ‘Death Magic’ LP, recorded at local NH space Popeye’s garage (and actual Popeye’s Chicken converted in a live venue), the bass hums throughout and it has a sticky hook. There’s a cool guitar effect that makes it almost sound like a harmonica for a minute and some good soloing, straight-ahead drum drive and they freak-it-out then break-it-down and bring it back for the finish. Reminds me a bit of a lighter Cheater Slicks type thing. “World What World” is a poppier affair and doesn’t really add to the a solid A-Side vibe started by “I Watch the Sea”. Flip is “I’ve Been to Space” – vox and overall tone get a bit more dramatic for a real downer. I appreciate the desperate plod of the construction (again, similar to Slicks formula a bit) and the guitar work is nicely fried and cracked. 300 copies, small hole 45rpm.
Second single (2012 entry) starts with “Desertion”, a pop-downer with ringing guitar twinkle, some subdued back-up vox that add to the mood. Recorded at Estrogen Highs house, making it a real family affair. It’s trumped by the B-Side though. “Just Summertime” is a pretty gutsy rocker, with down-n-out drum punch that has a heavier presence than on the other tunes thus far, some ghostly vocals give it a truly dark feel (instead of depressed/melancholic). A great entry in the summer-is-a-bummer genre, a good bad trip that’s kind of snakey/slinky in approach as well and has some of the best/wildest guitar work of all the releases. Looks like there’s a little bit of bonus groove at the end if you want to try it and get your turntable to play it. 300 copies, punch-out hole 45rpm.
Third single from 2013 is the one I’d tell you start with. “Alcoholic” was recorded live to 8 track (at Estrogen Highs house again) and it’s a winner. It starts as a heavy-ish garage-psych tune that leads to some guitar-noise exploration that is pretty blown with plenty of feedback and a segment to end that is experimental in an SY style that really sounds like something dying (in a good way). B-Side is a rougher version of “Pacemaker” from the ‘Death Magic’ LP that sounds better here with some frayed edges, and nearly like an Estrogen Highs tune for a lazy (but honest) reference. Makes the tune sound like indie-ROCK here instead of INDIE-rock. Mellow and watery sounding, reverbed vox sound like they’re melting. 300 copies, big hole 45rpm.
These singles were what I was expecting, the sort of damaged home-recording style that I think we all enjoy, and I feel I got a better idea of Greene’s aesthetic from these truly lo-fi outings. Someone should e-mail me and tell me which of the other Mountain Movers full lengths sound like this, as I kinda think ‘Death Magic’ was a bit plain sounding. There’s real character to be found in these single sides though.(RK)
(Car Crash Avoiders // carcrashavoiders.tumblr.com)


Acid Mother’s Temple & The Melting Paraiso UFO “High on New Heaven, Live in New Haven” 3XLPamt
I regrettably didn’t pay much attention to the Japanese underground psych-freak-rock scene when it was in its prime in the early Nineties, instead concerning myself with the more direct (to me) garage-punk of Teengenerate/Registrators/Guitar Wolf at the time. A band like AMT was beyond my comprehension then in a way (or at least outside of my comfort zone), even though I was aware of them and their contemporaries and read all about it in the cool zines. Of course I worked backwards years later through the PSF catalog, damning myself for not buying High Rise and Keiji Haino records when they were still affordable. The one band I did at least get to experience firsthand after I caught on were Acid Mother’s Temple, who have continued on their speedfreak journey for almost twenty years now, guided by “speed guru” Kawabata Makoto. I got to see them live maybe 6-7 years ago and it was well worth the wait. In a weird way I relate the Japanese freak scene with New England, as it seemed like these bands and records were exclusively imported through Forced Exposure and the championing of Coley and Johnson and the alliance of bands like Ghost with the like-minded gonzos of Twisted Village. So it seems fitting for this live album to be coming from New Haven, the type of college-town community where these bands would play campuses or local bars and fry the minds of the more adventurous members of the student body on their tours – or at least that’s picture I have painted in my head. And get this – this show was played on 4/20 of 2013 – “Today is 420, so please, high on!” For most other bands, a triple LP set would be deemed overkill, but for an AMT show it’s almost not enough. Three LPs is about the minimum it would take, and I take a bit of pleasure in the rare instances where I get to play a Side F. Each side is a song, with C/D encompassing the vast “Pink Lady Lemonade” (“Including Om Riff From The Melting Paraiso UFO – Parts 1&2”). Most of “In Search of the Lost Divine Arc” is played (title track, “Born Free Stone Free” to open, closing with “Space Speed Suicide”) with the “Cometary Orbital Drive” suite taking up Side E. I’m no expert on the band or this scene, although I do my best to try, but I don’t think anyone would say this show wasn’t incredible. AMT are not a band you can be a completist with (unless this is your exclusive genre) and I only own 3 of what Discogs claims are 60+ full length releases. A little bit of AMT goes a long way though (not in a disparaging way either) and for a novice/casual fan like myself a live record of high quality (such as this one, derrrrr) is a good staple to have in your collection. If you’re unfamiliar, this is probably even a good place to start. This is truly psychedelic music in the real sense, not what “psych” as a genre or descriptor has been bastardized into today, and even better than the Acid Archives sense of what psych often means (limp fuzz guitar bar rock). As always, leave it to the Japanese to be the freakiest most-out-there and honestly wild and free purveyors of this music. Gargantuan guitar riffs, kaiju-like rhythm section and an array of synthesizers and electronics create music that is equally wild both in its moments of quiet outer-spaceness and full on headblow rocking. A band that I wish I had known about when I was a young kid taking a lot of acid instead of listening to ‘The Wall’ over and over. Bands like this are the true heirs to Hawkwind’s LSD-in-outer-space throne. And what’s even better is that they’re still doing it NOW. Scum stats: 500 total, with 100 being the now sold out special edition with silk screened foldover jackets and poster, and 400 regular edition of which there are precisely 47 left available as of the writing of this article thanks to the stats provided by the Safety Meeting bandcamp, available at the unbelievably nice price of $30 for 3 LPs and a wide spine sleeve to house them and a full size insert. DO IT. (RK)
(Safety Meeting // www.safetymeeting.net)

Estrogen Highs “Unfortunate Chronology” Vol. 1&2 cassettes
Estrogen Highs are one of those bands that I was privileged enough to see evolve via the Termbo reviews section, from the very first Stefan-only demo (self-depreciatingly titled “Rough, Shitty, Peaked Levels…” CD-R), the first self-released 7″ (“E Major D Construction”) their unfortunate alliance with the aptly named Deadbeat Records (“Tell it to Them” LP, the only rough patch I felt the band went through), a handful more of EPs and tapes on other labels and their own (‘Friends & Relatives’ LP and the ‘Cycles’ 12″ being where I felt they really hit their stride) and finally finding a fitting home with Trouble in Mind for a pair of outstanding LPs (‘Irrelevant Future’ and what might have been the apex of their catalog in 2015’s ‘Hear Me on the Number Station’). Tracing their path from what at first was a somewhat straight garage band formed from the ashes of Sudden Walks (whose self-titled 7″ is a shoo-in for whatever the ‘Destroy All Art’-esque comp of the mid-2000’s punk underground is going to be named) into the wonderfully diverse (Kiwi-pop-via-Columbus-punk?) group they became was one of the more organic and perhaps largely under-appreciated evolutions of the past decade. Sadly, after almost a decade of existence Stefan is now closing the door on the band. I’m saddened by this development of course, but at least they went out on top of their game – yet I feel there might have been even further possibilities (i.e. some more “mainstream” success?) had their upward trajectory continued. I suppose it’s best this way though. This two volume cassette set cleans out the closet of some live and unreleased tracks, alt takes, an awesome variety of covers and noise experiments from the last six years of the bands existence. The very final release is slated to be a split LP with Detroit’s Frustrations (another under-rated act) coming on New Haven’s Safety Meeting label later this year. Obviously both tapes are essential at this point if only to grasp on to these splintering moments while we can. Volume 1 highlights include a live “This Harsh Country” which saddens me even further realizing I never actually saw E-Highs live (I once helped set a Buffalo show up for them, then wasn’t even in town when it happened, and I heard they played to an unfortunately small crowd – sorry Stefan!), “Classic Texts” which I swear I’ve heard on another release (but can’t pin down?!), an alternate “Forever Designing My Stationary”, and the covers here are incredible. Possibly the only good Jim Shepard cover ever (Ego Summit’s “We Got It All”) and fittingly so as Shepard became a noticeable influence on Stefan’s songwriting, a romp through “Scavenger of Death” (not from the Permanent Feels either…) and a live and meandering (and frighteningly almost dead-on) “Can’t You See”. Vol. 2 has more primo live action, and the huge jam of “Alley Man” from ‘Friends & Relatives’ is a real mindblower, a quiet acoustic version of Leonard Cohen’s “Lover Lover Lover” is welcome (as is a nice little Townes Van Zandt cover) and a rousing “I Am Tradition”. 25 cuts over both volumes, you’d be wise to get them both now as they’re limited to 50 copies each. I’ll miss this band greatly (and their clockwork-like LP every year), as I found comfort in the fact of knowing they were always out there plugging away in the tradition of all other rock outfits doing it the right way – their own way. (RK)
(Elm Recordings // elmrecordings.com)


Pieces of Fruit “Sowere soso” demo
Five song demo recorded by Stefan from Estrogen Highs. Is this the “New Haven Sound”? Quiet jangle, indie-rock via NZ and VU, New England cassette underground vibes. Pieces work the repetition angle and put their best foot forward immediately with “Sound” which is succinct and pleasantly simple. They try on some Modern Lovers vibes at one point, and the songs where they break out the noise guitar (tastefully though) add some interesting textures. Musically I can get into this, but the guy’s (purposefully?) out-of-tune warbling really gets to me after two songs. (RK)
(Elm Recordings // elmrecordings.com)

Worn Leather “Demo” and “Tape II” cassettes
Promising pair of tapes (recorded again by Stefan) from this New Haven garage-punk trio. Demo tape is real good from the get-go. “Telling Lies” is a fantastic bit of punk rock hook casting, “Short Supply” sounds like a jangly Angry Samoans, and “Nervous Shakes” could be placed on a volume of Teenage Shutdown. B-Side has more ‘mats vibes, they try hard for the hooks and end up getting a bit too melodic for me at times, but I have to admit these kids are capable of writing some real good songs and could be punching above their weight class already. ‘Tape II’ has five more, mix is a bit more bottom heavy and gives the tunes a bit more edge here. “Words” is a near perfectly crafted bit of garage-spunk with a big hook and solo. “Common Sense” is a real gone garage-punk bomber with a piercing lead. I dig the sort of JD (juvie delinquent, not Joy Division, dummy) vibes these kids have (and what a great band name), and I suppose you could paint a picture of them as a ragged young version of Marked Men, but they keep it more garage-Punk, avoiding any too-cute pop cliches. They make a good effort at some vocal harmonies here that sound fitting and even a bit semi-tough and again elicit garage punk unknown thoughts. I’m imagining Stefan as mentoring these kids, and if that’s true they’re learning fast and well. Real cool stuff.(RK)
(self-released // wornleather.bandcamp.com)


Stefan Christensen “Israel (It’s More of the Same)” cassette
Stefan’s first solo outing (or official “solo” as there were some E-Highs recordings that were just him…or the Ehrgeizig and Permanent Feels tapes…) and what is apparently his new musical outlet now that E-Highs are gone (unless Casual Sexists are still together…). An eleven song journey, at times plaintive and somewhat folk-based but more often than not it’s wonderful rock with very classy use of loud guitars and somewhat experimental wrangling of feedback and noisy texture. Stefan’s contemplative songwriting style makes good use of dynamics in the structure, the sort of songs that you think are a bit quiet but realize halfway in that this is in essence loud rock’n’roll performed in very creative ways. “I Am the Timepiece” is a truly stunning piece of work and one of the best rock songs I’ve heard this year. The tape as a whole is full of canny moves, reinforcing the fact that Stefan is one of the more interesting voices out there. “Lost in East Rock” is reminiscent of Rick White’s work, there are segments that of course recall the direction that Estrogen Highs were heading in their waning days, perhaps even a bit more somber. I of course impress a certain New England feel onto this in my head, Sebadoh-like (maybe more Eric than Lou) maybe some Burma even. “Astral Fulfillment” actually reminds me of the sound and aesthetic of The Breeders circa-‘Pod’. I’m very thankful Stefan seems to be moving forward quickly with this project – I almost feel as if the Estrogen Highs were taken from us too soon, or perhaps I was just used to them being there, but this eases the pain. Word has it that Stefan has assembled a band with members of Mountain Movers and is playing live. And this very tape will be getting “reissued” via Night People as well. Artwork reminds me of a Homeblitz record, and while Stefan and Daniel might not sound that much alike, I think they both have a similar aesthetic in a way.(RK)
(self-released // www.irrelevantfuture.blogspot.com)


Be back soon for Canadiana…..


Hey now. Here’s a bunch of tape/demo reviews for you to read. We will have short updates in the next weeks focusing on New Haven bands/records, Rochester/Rotcore releases and an All Canadian update. So if your releases fall under those headings, please be patient. Other than that, we have more records reviews, zine reviews, Termbo print issue #3 coming in October and other surprises. Catch up on older zines and tapes over at the Loki Label. If anyone out there wants to contribute to the zine or the site drop us a line with some ideas: termibore-at-aol.com –

(picture by Dave Hyde)


Hey there, it’s been a long time since we last rapped at ya. Here’s a large page full of overdue record reviews of the vinyl sort. Some older, some newer, we hope you find some thing you might like or have missed or are just finding out about. Still have another file full of vinyl reviews to edit and an even larger file full of tape/demo reviews to paste up, both of which should be happening soon now that we’re back from summer vacation. We also have a couple of interviews ready to roll as well. In other news, look for print Termbo Issue #3 around the end of summer, accompanied by a Giant Sized Best of Termbo as well. Back issues are still available via our friends at The Loki Label. And speaking of the Loki Label, the first annual Loki Fest is happening next weekend, July 18th at the Ace of Cups in scenic Columbus, Ohio with performances by Unholy Two, Mordecai, Cheater Slicks and Counter Intuits. There’s some more info about it here and we hope to see you there. Back soon. Direct all questions/comments/requests to the editor at termibore-at-aol.com.


2014: DEAD

After some serious decision-making and last minute vote recounting, our “What We Liked About 2014” staff lists are available for review, just in case you might have missed anything this past year. Check that stuff out here. Up next we have a TONNE of reviews to get us caught up and into the new year plus a very special Garbage Can from our friend Ryan Dinosaur. All this and more very soon, including some print news as well….

Final review before press...


I. Tape Delay//Demo Zone reviews for the Fall season are complete and available for perusal here. Record reviews are on deck, hopefully ready for you to enjoy over the Thanksgiving holiday.


II. GARBAGE CAN! People are really stepping up to the can this year. Here’s the latest installment from our pals Sketchy Nick & Biff, in which they take on a selection of tapes and singles and talk about gribnage. We currently have another can installment brewing down South which should be ready soon.


III. On the interviews front, the latest is with Chicago’s NONES done by our Midwest correspondent Troy. Check out the Nones LP on Hozac, it’s worth your time. On deck: the definitive Mordecai story.


IV. In a shocking development, our print department has finally finished TERMBO #1, hopefully the first of many (or at least a couple) issues. All exclusive content, including JIMBO EASTER, FNU RONNIES, WHITE LOAD, BLACK FLAG, FOLDED SHIRT, films, poetry and records. There’s also a limited package that includes a TERMBO: THE EARLY YEARS zine reprinting some of the early TB interviews for bathroom reading/reminiscing. Jay Reatard, Ryan Rousseau, Alicja Trout, Shane White, Black Time, Armitage Shanks and more with some new commentary and a Statics article from the old Rip Off Records site. It’s thick and was a pain in the ass to assemble so we only made a few. Future versions of this sort of thing might happen as well. It’s all for sale via our friends over at THE LOKI LABEL, where you can also purchase their tapes and other odds and ends (including the last copies of the Giorgio Murderer live tape special edition, last copies of the first press of the latest from COUNTER INTUITS, last copies of the SECRETS IN WELSH zine…).


That’s all for now. Anyone wishing to contribute to Termbo online or in print should contact the editor: termibore-at-aol.com.


Happy Labor Day weekend everyone! And speaking of (hard) labor, our success with the Garbage Can just keeps rolling on. And this time we have what might be the most phenomenal Can of all-time, from the razor sharp mind of our dear friend Theresa “Hillside Wrangler” Smith. Just take a look at this and have your mind blown. This sets the bar rather high for future installments, so anyone who wants to play better be prepared to step up their game. Heaps of thanks to Theresa for surely frying some synapses permanently in the pursuit of reviewing bad records for your entertainment. You can find her elsewhere on the web in places like this and this and also on stage with Homeblitz and Ballroom. One of the good ones, for sure.

Coming real soon:




While we put the finishing touches on the reviews update (as if it wasn’t big enough) we found some items to clear from the desk before we shutdown to observe Independence Day – some zine reviews and a brief Horriblefest recap the editor scribbled on some White Castle napkins during his trip – hey, it’s not like we’re known for our punctuality. Record reviews are on deck, followed by a huge Demo Zone/Tape Delay and an incredible take on the Garbage Can (hey, we’re two for two this year! We’ve got a couple more in circulation as well). After that we have some interviews and other treats. See you soon and be careful with those fireworks kids.

Many of the zines below can be had from FEEL IT, the finest zine distro in the land. Sam also has a great selection of records and tapes often not available elsewhere – including what are probably the last copies of the Gutter Gods LP in the US, which you’re fool if you don’t own.

Brain and Scalp – Issue 001 -28 pages, half size. First issue of this mini-zine covering the Alabama punk scene(!). Looks like they spent a few extra bucks on some color ink for the printer, but then rendered it useless by making all the photos inverse/negatives with some kind of pink/purpley hue. Weird. Anyway, this issue covers live shows in Mobile (Peelander-Z, Wizzard Sleeve, Paint Fumes and lots more including Hibachi Stranglers, who I am really glad to hear still play out – now let’s get that LP recorded fellas) and has a lengthy review/short interview regarding the two Cuntz LPs and US tour. The best part of this one is the Gary Wrong reviews column (“Wrong Way”!). Other than Gary’s section, this one’s not so hot, but it has lots of ads from the Southern scene (Holotrash, Jeth Row, Total Punk, Pelican Pow Wow, etc…) (brainandscalp@live.com)

Jerk Store – Issue 13/Jan 2014 – 30 or so pages, B&W, half-size, paper is off white for a nice effect and laid out very well, although this guy should bump the font up a size or two or start going to a larger size sheet, because it’s a squinter of a read. This is the first issue of Jerk Store to be passed around Termbo HQ, and it’s pretty decent. Best stuff: the live show pictorials which spread over two pages and have the flier for the show, a shot of each band and some action shots of the crowd. A really cool way to cover live stuff with no words – makes me wonder if a show sucked if they would put in pics of the crowd looking bummed instead of pitting. The Daylight Robbery tour diary of Australia was a good read, even though I’m not familiar with the band. Cool interview with 1981 – I’m not into Finnish crust it, but it was laid out great as well as having good questions. The record review section looks better than is to read, but at least there’s enthusiasm even if all the reviews are positive. Not a fan of the personal/day-in-the-life column stuff either, keep that shit in your journal, pal. Cool Aussie zine overall though, I’m gonna steal some ideas from this guy’s layouts. (jerkstore.bigcartel.com)

MAXIMUM TREMOLOMaximum Tremolo – Issues 1 & 2 – “Making Surf A Fucking Threat Again”! Wait, was surf music ever a threat? I kid! B&W printing on color stock, half size, #1 runs 16 pages, while #2 bumps it up to a big time 40+. Full disclosure, this zine comes from the surf metropolis that is my hometown of Buffalo, NY and I know a couple of the sketchy characters involved in its creation. The good news is that these weirdos have a genuine passion for the often maligned genre and I know that the authors of most of the articles herein are principled individuals who will call a turd a turd when necessary. Issue 1 is a quickie, setting up the recurring columns: ‘Look What the Tide Washed In’ dealing with weird/odd surf (King U and Cousin Al so far), Ask Dr. Surf, Dollar Bin Rippers, What The Heck Are You Playing? Etc… Interviews range from Mike Hunchback to Feral Kid Records to La Luz and more. Live reviews, show reviews, zine reviews and #2 has a pretty extensive records section. The best surf zine out there, and that includes that piece of crap The Continental (see issue #2 for more on that). These dudes are also in a band called Aaron & The Burrs who you should check out if you’re thinking of getting in the modern surf game. Available for the nice price ($2) or trade. (utrecords.storenvy.com)

organ grinderOrgan Grinder – Issue #3 – full color, full size, 22 pages. A rare puzzle/comics/humor mag with a punk/pop culture bent. Crosswords, sodoku (sic), jumbles, word search, math, matching games and more interspersed with semi-reviews of stuff, eccentric columns and comic strips. Best parts of this issue were the linguistic analysis of the word “oogle” in regards to crust culture and the ‘Canadian or Scientologist’ and ‘Gay or Adopted’ quizzes. Pretty goofy, sometimes funny and some of these quizzes are actually a bit tough. (www.organgrindermagazine.com)

rubberneck 8Rubberneck – Issues 8 & 9 – full size, full color covers, 36 pages, pro-printed. I’ll admit I’ve not historically been a fan of the “photo zine”, but Austin’s Rubberneck has changed my opinion, as it’s probably one of the best zines out there right now. The photos are spectacular (usually by editor Jon Chamberlin, with help from his staff), a mix of posed and action shots of bands from all ends of the garage-rock spectrum. There are some well done interviews in each issue now (the Cheetah Chrome, Russell Quan and Head interviews are good examples of the short form) and my favorite part is Miranda Fisher’s record reviews section, because get this, she actually has an opinion! There’s usually a couple of goofy columns you can skip over (although the Ask Wes Coleman column will appeal to fans of the guy) but Issue #9 marks the appearance of ‘Get Quapped’ written by Termbo’s favorite son and Liquor Store legend Sarim Al-Rawi, which I hope to see a lot more of. Shit, just have the guy write captions for the whole zine! I also think the ‘Popular Oblivians Favorites’ article wherein they ask some garage-rock kingpins (Nobunny, Buck Biloxi, Useless Eater, OBN, etc.) about their favorite ‘blivs cuts was a great idea. I would subscribe to this publication if I were you. (www.rubberneckzine.com)

degenerateDegenerate Zine – any/all issues – just wanted to mention Sam Lefebvre’s Degenerate again because I finally caught up on some back issues and I sadly believe that the zine might now be defunct. You should definitely track down all issues you can find (in particular the later full sized issues that came with flexis from Scraper and Musk) – I believe some Bay Area stores still have them (1234! Go at least) online for non-CA residents. Intelligently written and razor sharp criticism combined with a great eye for cut-n-paste layout made it one of my favorite US zines of modern days and possibly the US equivalent to the Distort/NGL standard, covering a good cross section of hardcore-punk both old and new. The website has disappeared but maybe you can e-mail degeneratezine-at-gmail.com and look here: http://degenerateephemera.tumblr.com/.

cretinsCretins of Distortion – Issue #3 – full size, 54 pages, B&W. Sloptastic zine action from the Midwest hardcore scene, this zine is based out of Columbus and I’m pretty sure is written by a young lady. Covers bands/records/shows centering around cretins like Big Zit, Lumpy & The Dumpers and the rest of the Spotted Race, Gas Rag, Culo and anyone else from STL to Detroit to NWI and even dipping into Clevo. Good article on 26/Doc Dart, lots of tape reviews and coverage a scene that’s got tons of interesting shit going on. Cut and paste layout is as obnoxious as the bands covered here (that’s a compliment), great use of stick-on lettering, the writing is sometimes a bit young but very energetic and the fact that this monster issue sticks to covering one (albeit rather geographically wide) scene speaks to the fact that there is some serious shit going down in the Midwest. This one comes bagged and tagged with a “The Midwest Is Alright” decal and includes a button, sticker and poster. Issue #2 is equally as gross/awesome and has a cool tye-dyed cover. I still need tapes from Ooze, CHUD and Big Zit if anyone’s holding! Still available via Grave Mistake it appears. Go there now. (www.gravemistakerecords.com)

wetworldWet World – Issue #? – 44+ pages, full size, B&W. Not sure if this still available anywhere, but it’s a must have. Firstly, this mostly covers the Midwest scene, but stretches the focus outside as well. Sloppy as shit layout actually works, mainly due to the use of a lot of hand drawn stuff. There’s a full length Officer Brad X interview recounting his LSOK days and also reprinting the N-Word Xmas story with great illustrations and snide comments added (which apparently miffed Mr. X after the fact). It’s honestly really funny from both sides of the story. Also includes a Brain Tumors interview (the band with the best tour blog ever), a VCR interview (the new Toronto band, not Vice City Rockers, but it’s still ok), the old “interview yourself” bit, illustrations from Lumpy, some fantastic Bill Murray criticism and what is probably the best reviews section I’ve read in years (records and films). This kid loves Big Zit, Kremlin, Neil Young, True Sons of Thunder and Lumpy. I like the cut of his jib. (you can download a pdf of it here)

56 flyersOver 56 Flyers Plus More – full size, B&W, 68 pages, with additional 4 full size posters and 12 page two color risograph printed half-size book. Title says exactly what it is – a compendium of flyers from the NYC scene from 2006-2013 from Eugene Terry (Dwan of Humans/Crazy Spirit) and Sam Ryser (Crazy Spirit/Dawn of Humans). The “Toxic State” aesthetic if you will. If you love these bands as much as I do you might want to foot the bill for this one. Cool as shit, plus Papertown has loads more interesting material, including more art zines, tapes, patches and dead bugs. (http://papertowncompany.bigcartel.com)

aggroAGGRO – Issue 1 – half size, 28 pages, B&W, color cover – from some of the same minds as Savage Damage Digest comes this zine subtitled “Observations from the Unpopular Era of Punk & Hardcore”, which apparently means anything from the late Eighties or Nineties in general. Short stories and recollections from seven authors with topics including an ’87 Bad Brains show, some SoCal scene reminiscing, a recounting of the incident when Jello Biafra broke his leg at Gilman St., going to shows in Tijuana, NY/NJ punk reflection and The Skinhead Menace. Lots of good pics and fliers used, it’s a quick and fun read – even if it gets a little too ‘personal zine’ style at times, at least it’s all about music. (savagedamagedigest@gmail.com)

distort 43DISTORT – Issues 43 & 44 – full size, B&W, 28 pages – there’s not much more I can say about Distort. The best zine of the modern age?One of the all time greats? One of the only publications that I actually look forward to (the others being Thrasher and Cinema Retro)? It’s all true. DX begins #43 with a sort of manifesto/restatement of purpose and also makes mentions that these will be the last ten issues of Distort. Bad news for sure, but 53 issues is a hell of a lot, and that’s a back catalog to be proud of. Plus, it’s not like the guy is busy with bands or anything. Anyway, the bar continues to be raised as far as quality goes. These are all interview/editorial issues, as Distort will not be doing reviews anymore. A shame, as I love DX’s opinions and take on whatever records/tapes he decides to discuss, but also understandable. Things also move into more literary realms here, both via interview subjects and the style in general. 43 talks with Lakes, author S.T. Lore, Oily Boys, Low Life, Dribble/Gutter Gods (a great companion/aid to understanding the LP), Prolife (ex-Slug Guts), Lucy Cliché (Half High) and Vanessa Amara. #44 has the rest of the Gutter Gods/Dribble interview, HTRK, Constant Mongrel, Jock Club, LokeRahbek (Lust for Youth/Croation Amor/Posh Isolation), philosophers Jon Roffe and Ray Brassier and some writing on/about Life Stinks I Like The Kinks. The best thing you’re going to read anytime soon. (distortmag.bigcartel.com or in the US via Feel It)

nix comicsDo You Remember Rock’n’Roll Record Stores? – comic, B&W – fantastic little comic, recounting a younger days tale from BelaKoe-Krompecher (of Anyway Records and Columbus scene-dude in general) that has to do with Used Kids, The Ramones, skinheads, booze and more. Illustrated tastefully by Andy Bennett, this is the sort of thing that could be really boring, but due to Bela’s writing and the subject material it makes for a great but brief read that’s sentimental and intelligent. Recommended. (Nix Comics – www.nixcomics.com)

pure entertainmentPure Entertainment – Issue 1 – digest sized, B&W, color cover, 72 pages – reprint of a 1983 issue of PE, which was the all rock issue. Pretty cool stuff, somewhere in between Zap and Dork, with a side order of Heavy Metal (the magazine). Most notable contributor is Mort Todd (the Divisible Man story) along with Bob Camp who went on to draw for the Ren &Stimpy show. 19 stories ranging from one page to ten, some serious and some in goofball commix style. Some points of reference: Roxy Music’s “In Every DreamhomeA Heartache”, Sonics vs. Wailers, Warren Zevon, Geza X and more music nerdery. Good stuff from Columbus’ Nix Comics, check ‘em out. (Nix Comics – www.nixcomics.com)

down and out  Down and Out – issue 31 – full size, B&W, 48 pages – fantastic issue of Down and Out from Sam Vince. This one features three long and very well done interviews with Michael Berdan (Drunkdriver, Veins, Uniform, York Factory Complaint, wearer of horror film t-shirts), Raspberry Bulbs and Breathing Problem (Rusty from Total Abuse). Massive reviews section that isn’t afraid of cassettes, focusing on hardcore, noise and Australia. All positive reviews though. I like the “Old Haunts” reviews he snuck in the section and there are more than a few releases here I did not know of/about, which is awesome. Worth it for the Berdan and RB interviews alone. (downandoutzine.blogspot.com)


The biggest news of the weekend for me: an event that perhaps trumped the breaking of The Undertaker’s streak, Homostupids’ run of consecutive Horriblefests has been ended at 8 due injuries sustained to Dale’s back. Any involvement by Brock Lesnar or Paul Heyman is unconfirmed as of press time, and I guess Peffer owns the individual iron man streak now along with Paul (I need a Russ Romance fact check on this one)…Buck Biloxi &The Fucks tore down the house to end Night 1. If you can get over with the punks in Clevo, you know you’re truly 100% over. I think they played every song they (or at least Rob) knew, and the line-up that is now bolstered by John Henry from Detonations/Static Static and Lindsey from No Bails is absolutely destructive…Iceage have apparently been watching and listening to a lot of Gun Club and Nick Cave/Birthday Party videos and records. The new LP will be sure to alienate their current fan base. It was good listening, but not so good watching, if you know what I mean. I will give the singer credit for not breaking kayfabe while drunkenly wandering around the bar later that night…the Greenberg/Berdan tag team known as Uniform might have been the loudest band of the fest. So loud they blew the breaker in the bar and had to haul out their massive stacks after one song…Prostitutes (not the Secret ones) was a surprisingly good listen, but again, not so good watching, as most electronic music is when people aren’t dancing…Night 2 was full of heroes, starting with the Unholy Two, who probably should not have played first, but completely destroyed for the three songs I managed to get to NTC in time for. No blading or top rope maneuvers, but still more visceral and technically sound than any match on Smackdown that evening. I think a Lutzko vs. Dean Ambrose feud would be easy money…Mordecai also destroyed in a completely different way, as I’m sure anyone who saw them on their tour can attest to. There’s something very special about these Bodish kids, that much I already knew from the recordings, but live it was something else even more powerful. Any band that can make me enjoy Gratfeul Dead covers is doing something very right…Ron House is still more punk than all of us and Counter Intuits were my favorite set on a night full of five star matches. Look for “Password (Is Password)” to be the big hit on the next record, a classic in the House vs. technology mold. Looks like Jared has the new band whipped into fine shape as well…Pleasure Lefties filled in for Homostupids, which was the next best Plan B aside from a 9 Shocks set. This band should be much “bigger” than they are, but I guess they’re heading in that direction and I’m thrilled for them…Wetbrain reminded us all that they slay (what a novel idea for a band – get a bunch of guys who are amazing at their instruments!) and that Cooch guy is taking forever with their record. They supposedly played an acoustic set recently that people in the know were raving about that I wish I could hear…Secret Prostitutes were another surprise. As a not-fan of the records, live it goes over incredibly well. That skimasked drummer/singer is a fucking machine. In the running for best stage banter (and tattoos) as well…apparently Mahalls is now a “hipster” venue, so that means Horriblefest matinees get the shaft in favor of $30 shows with Swedish fruits running around in costumes…Castle Greatskull is in the middle of fucking nowhere across town, but I heard the party bus was a good time…I think we saw the very last Mangina show ever and last glimpses of Sambeaux’s penis that afternoon. I’m proud to say I was there…Hank &The Hammers were running late so the possible double-header was thwarted much to everyone’s dismay…Vile Gash made up for it. One of the best HC bands in sport. Why? Because the singer is scary looking and apparently legitimately pissed off at all times. Exactly what a hardcore frontman should be…Degreaser were another big time surprise. I mean, I had high hopes, and lI ike them on record, but they soared well above any expectations in the live setting. Drummer reminded me of a healthier Artie Lange, the guit/sing guy was a seven foot tall mass of long hair and torn jeans and the bass guy looks like most dudes in Aussie bands (kinda yobby). They looked the part (not that it mattered) and I felt like I was watching feedtime for a bit there. Really amazing. I’m ecstatic thinking about the new record…leaving Greatskull I realized I somehow missed Party Plates, which was a bummer…Saturday Night Show was a stone cold stunner. Bad Noids get the local heroes award and were fantastic on the big stage, Mikey dolled up as a ballerina and their “Let’s scram fellas!” stage exit was the best move of the fest…I’m glad I got there early to catch Classhole, and Matt Muscle was in fine form for an old giant…Hank and the Hammers showed up, relieving the crowd who were worried about a possible no-show, and they played the big stage with the extra percussion guy. Sound got a little wonky, but it was still beautiful and they played at least three new ones from the supposedly already recorded new LP which will have insane expectations heaped on it, which I think they can live up to. If you don’t think Mr. Wood is in the Top 3 punk front guys in the world right now you are a crazy bitch…by the way, the singer kid from BIG ZIT was there moshing like a mofo and pissing people off. I forgot to ask him for a tape though…speaking of expectations (again), Lumpy and the Dumpers delivered 100% with a ballsy small stage show. They also receive the fireworks medal (last year’s winner was Pink Reason for those keeping score). Martin/Lumpy is another top tier frontguy, a total sparkplug with some killer herky-jerky stage moves (I saw them again in Buffalo the next night and they were phenomenal again)…S.H.I.T. were not bad at all, but every time I see a Toronto band for the rest of my life I’m going to wish it was Kremlin instead…Gary Wrong Group could be in the running for Iron Man as well, or at least Chad is. Shit, is there a fest that GWG hasn’t played this year? Everyone loves this guy, for good reason. Never, ever disappointing…Destruction Unit: holy shit. Fog machine, a single red light, three or four guitar players, it was like seeing High Rise or Rallizes Denudes or some other Japanese heavies (and I’m pretty sure the guitar player at center stage was there with me). Unbelievable, in a completely serious shit way. Heavily deeeep psych-rock devastation, these guys are the real fucking deal live and an amazing show/fest ender….you’ll have to ask someone else how the Sunday AM show was, because I’m too old for that shit…. Best things I purchased all weekend: multiple steak tortas (La Plaza Supermarket), Fred Locks “Black Star Liner In Dub” LP (Hausfrau Records – your one stop shop for Jamaican jams) and a nice edition of Camus’ The Plague (Guide to Kulchur – an awesome bookstore that opened next to Hausfrau)…Russ Romance and Paul are my heroes, this was perhaps the best Horriblefest ever and sets the bar pretty fucking high for next year…perhaps Buzzard’s Luck can headline. Below is the only good picture I took out of about 100 attempts.

holt bodish