Friday, November 29, 2013

The Flaming Lips "Peace Sword" LP WB RSD

The Flaming Lips
“Peace Sword” LP
Record Store Day November 29, 2013

For some reason back in 1984, Lovely Sorts of Death Records thought my stupid little fanzine Freedom of Expression (FOE) could somehow help them get the word out on their record. I treasured that first Flaming Lips record that they sent to me. I treasured the poster they sent me. I treasured receiving promos of all of their records released in the 80s right on through the Atavistic “Unconsciously Screamin'” EP. 

Warner Brothers did not know or care who FOE was. So then I spent my money on every Flaming Lips LP I could get my hands on released thereafter.

I treasure the faith bands and labels have given me when they asked me to review their records or play their records on my radio shows.

“Peace Sword” started out as a project where the Flaming Lips were asked to provide some music for the movie “Ender’s Game”. Eventually the track turned into the 36 minute, six tracks on “Peace Sword” which is available only at independent record stores according to the sticker on the record I purchased on Record Store Day November 29, 2013.

Obviously, there is a trippy space feel, as this was inspired by a space book (1985) that I never read, that turned into a movie (2013) that I have never seen. But I will probably at least see the movie now that the Flaming Lips are attached to it!

“Peace Sword’ is majestic and lush. I love it when music can make you feel a certain way. Like a good Agnostic Front song can make the hair stand on my arms and want to go out and start a riot... the Flaming Lips on “Peace Sword” make me want to turn the lights down, drop the needle on the record, turn the volume up, put the headphones on and kick back and be taken on an aural trip.

The Flaming Lips are their own band. Comparing them to someone else is ridiculous because in the end, they sound like the Flaming Lips. But I will throw out the obvious and not so obvious bands I hear, just because I feel like being ridiculous… Pink Floyd, Beatles, ELO, Kraftwerk and Devo. But when all is said and done, “Peace Sword” is a true original and another masterful record in the Flaming Lips discography.

I am thankful the Flaming Lips exist and grateful that I own this LP.


Frank FOE

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Halbstarke Jungs / The Bullet Kings Split 7" Street Justice Records

Halbstarke Jungs / The Bullet Kings
Split 7” (red vinyl)
Released: 2013

This is the second time I am urging you to buy a Halbstarke Jungs record. The first was their split with the Warriors.

This 7” includes the track “Cheer Up” (which is also on the split with the Warriors) and the track “Nothing To Lose”.  Street Justice is the same label that brought us the Agnostic Front 3xlp box (yes wooden box) “A Box of Hurt and Hate”.

Below is a video for the German version of “Cheer Up”, “Kopf Hoch!”. The English version is on the 7”. I love the song in English and German!

“Cheer Up” or “Kopf Hoch!” has become my anthem. Lyrically, we all need this kind of reminder no matter what is troubling us and the music is perfect. A memorable, driven blend of hardcore and  streetpunk.  Basti reminds me a bit of Hank from Turbonegro in his vocal delivery. Plus I love it when the guitar solo is announced!

“Nothing to Lose” is another example of how Halbstarke Jungs combines a positive message while still playing aggressive music. They remind me of Turbonegro in their musicianship, aggression and sound!

Halbstarke Jungs is one of my favorite new discoveries in 2013!

The Bullet Kings are from the UK and formed in 2006. This is another great band that somehow I missed along the way!

Wilf, Andy and Carl play gruff, classic punk with a hardcore edge. The Bullet Kings have plenty of fire and energy. They know what they are doing and their sound is professional and to the point!

“Godforsaken Town” sounds like it could have been recorded by a punk band in my hometown!

I love this record!


Frank FOE

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Noisem "Agony Defined" CD/LP/Digital

“Agony Defined”
Released: June 11, 2013

At first listen to Noisem’s “Agony Defined”, I was left waiting for something to pull me in, anything to set this apart from the death/thrash masses. There are a million death/thrash bands out there that are good, but indistinguishable from the next.

Then a lead comes in… sounds like someone has been listening to the first Slayer album. Now we have something, they are showing their roots. Very early Slayer is always a good place to start. OK Noisem, you have my attention for a second listen.

Then I hear the Toxic Holocaust/Municipal Waste thrash attack. All out, push it as fast as you can. I’m starting to buy in a little more. Then I hear something else, is that a crust punk nihilism? Is it possible Noisem has listened to Aus Rotten or maybe Nausea? My head was tilting and nodding with approval.

The second time through "Agony Defined", by the time I got to track six, “Rotten Remains” I’m thinking Noisem even studied the legendary Nuclear Assault.

So now I am cruising the internet looking for more. So I find some photos of Noisem and one of them is a photo of their crazy singer in a Minor Threat shirt with homemade cut off shorts, cut wayyyyy too short, like we used to wear in the 80s, when we didn’t know any better.

...and with that, Noisem officially gets my seal of approval.

Click above to give Noisem a listen.

So yeah, these 15 to 20 year olds (at the time of the recording) are killing it on their debut. Sure, some (not all) of this has zero in the hook department, opting for the emphasis on speed and aggression. At their age, I said the same thing. Gimme speed, gimme aggression, stick my head in the speaker, turn it up, thrash it out, wreck my mind. Nicely done Noisem. I am looking forward to a brilliant future from these Baltimore Thrash Heads.

Frank FOE

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Poison Idea "Kings of Punk" reissue Southern Lord Records

Poison Idea
Kings of Punk
Released: November 26, 2013 (Originally in 1986)

Portland's Poison Idea is undoubtedly in the top ten of live bands I have ever seen. That Philly squat show was one of the legendary days that contributes to the definition of my life. Drinking a beer with Jerry A. in some blown apart building before the gig, circle pit with pimps in fur coats, extremely drunken fans smashing bottles over their own heads, the world was ending that night and we celebrated it.

Released in 1986, the same year I went away to college, I either almost died or was ultimately saved with the help of Poison Idea (along with Discharge, Dr. Know and “Master of Puppets”).

This record was $6 postage paid in 1986 from Pusmort. Included two posters, the one below, hung on my wall for more than a decade (before I put it back in the album before it completely deteriorated).

The original tracks that made up this mid 80s life changing record are expanded to include another 40 some tracks recorded live from 1984-86. It is my understanding that the TKO vinyl version is limited to 300, includes the live tracks as a second LP, is on colored vinyl and includes a poster.

I would never sell the original of this record on Pusmort and have ordered the reissue on vinyl from TKO (listening to the Southern Lord digital version - 2xCD- for this review).

All praise Southern Lord & TKO for reissuing all these Poison Idea records. I don't know if anyone is getting rich from any of these but it makes me genuinely happy that these reissues are happening in such a glorious manner. Southern Lord and TKO reissued “Darby Crash Rides Again” and “The Fatal Erection Years” last year. I suggest you obtain these definitive hardcore records.  

Frank FOE

Friday, November 8, 2013

Up To No Good Radio Halloween 2013

Reds and FOE provided your soundtrack to Halloween 2013 on WLVR 91.3 FM Bethlehem PA.

The playlist appears below! 

Rancid “Up To No Good”
Electric Frankenstein “Coolest Little Monster”
Undead “I Want You Dead”
Dead End Drive “Become the Dead”
The Misfits “Ghouls Night Out”
T.S.O.L. “Silent Screams”
Dead Kennedys “Halloween”
Dwarves “Wish That I Was Dead”
Talking Heads “Psycho Killer”
The Freeze “Halloween Night”
A.O.D. “Mischief Night”
Mad Parade “Real Horror Show”
Rezillos “Flying Saucer Attack”
Spongebob Square Pants “Spongebob Scaredy Pants”
Samhain “Halloween II”
45 Grave “Evil”
Oxymoron “Black Cats”
Redd Kross “Linda Blair”
Social Distortion “The Creeps”
Russian Meatsquats “Phantasm”
The Misfits “Horror Hotel”
Motorhead “Dancing on Your Grave”
Rob Zombie “Werewolf Women of the SS”
T.S.O.L. “Black Magic”
Murphy’s Law “Cavity Creeps”
Specials “Ghost Town”
Briefs “My  Girl Wants To Be A Zombie”
Paul Meatsquat “Halloween”
Wednesday 13 “I Walked With A Zombie”
Accused “Psychomania (She’s Dead)”
Poison Idea “Bela Lugosi is Dead”
The Exorcism of Annelesse Miche”
Butthole Surfers “22 Going on 23”
Ramones “Pet Semetary”
Type O Negative “Everyone I Love is Dead”
Paul Meatsquat “Halloween Song”
Cold Blue Rebels “Zombie Love”
Mansfields “Who Wants To Be A Zombie Anyways”
45 Grave “Night of the Demons”
The Cramps “Human Fly”
Paul Meatsquat “Pumpkin Patch”
YDI “Zombie Youth”
Dead End Drive “The Bride Came DOA”
The Misfits “Demonomania”
Rob Zombie “Living Dead Girl”
The Damned “Grimly Fiendish”
Antiseen “Haunted House”
Poison 13 “Hellbound Train”
Rocky Erickson and the Aliens “Creature with the Atom Brain”
Dickies “Infidel Zombie”
Electric Eel Shock “Zombie Rock n Roll”
Brutal Truth “Walking Corpse”

Slayer “Dead Skin Mask”

Frank FOE