Sunday, December 16, 2018

Metal Alliance Tour

  • I have time.
  • I have choices of what to do with my time.
  • Friday, November 30th 2018 I chose to see my son's Winter Concert and then head out to see the last date of the Metal Alliance Tour at One Centre Square, Easton PA. Amazing what you can be a part of in one day. Grateful for these life affirming opportunities (having or showing a positive outlook that encourages optimism about life).
  • I arrived in Easton in time to see the two headliners, missing an opportunity to witness two of my favorite bands, Black Tusk and The Parasitix.


  • Heading in to the show, I had no idea who decided putting punk legends The Casualties on tour with metal gods Goatwhore. What could possibly be the connection?
  • Then after seeing the bands play, I got it. The Casualties and Goatwhore both play Flying V guitars and have spikes (The Casualties with their spikey hair, Goatwhore with those amazing spiked forearm gauntlets)!
  • This was the first time seeing The Casualties without Jorge on vocals. A little over a year ago, the Casualties posted this:
After 27 years of performing with the band, Jorge has chosen that the touring life is no longer for him. With that said, The Casualties will carry on. As anyone who follows us knows, the name The Casualties is stronger then any one member. The songs written in basements throughout New York City shall continue to ring loud. We will continue our commitment to the Casualties Army! We will tour and put forward new anthems for many more years to come. When we said "it's a f*cking way of life" back in the beginning, we meant it.

  • David Rodriguez fills in the void left by Jorge and if there was any doubt of his commitment to performing, those doubts were squashed when he dove from the balcony at One Centre Square into the pit below. Check Alessa Decay's video here:
  • Fantastic. 
  • Goatwhore is just sick. The crowd was definitely a mix of punk and metal, with some punks rotating out and metal heads rotating in to the pit when the bands switched. I love the look of both bands. I appreciate it when bands give a show. I've seen plenty of bands in shorts and t-shirts. I like the "show" when bands bring it beyond just stepping on stage. Spike up the hair, grow the hair, break out the spikes, give it your all as if tonight was your last night on earth. Stand out. Both Goatwhore and the Casualties brought it on this last night of the Metal Alliance Tour.
  • Life Affirming.
  • Check this piece from Revolver to get a glimpse of the coolness that surrounds Goatwhore:

Frank FOE

Check out more of Alessa's work here:  Alessa Nicole Photography

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

The Ratchets "First Light"

"First Light"
Pirates Press Records
Released: November 9, 2018
  • The Ratchets are from New Jersey.
  • "First Light" is not their first LP, but the first I own and I feel super ridiculous. Why? Because I love this album and feel like I should have known about them earlier. 
  • Bouncing Souls legend Pete Steinkopf recorded and mixed this at Little Eden, Asbury Park NJ. I always thought highly of Pete when I first met him hanging out with the Weston lads back in the Mammyhouse days a couple of decades ago. You can check Pete's goings on here:
  • Check the video for the album's first cut, The Ratchets - "Gotta Be Cool" (Official Music Video):

  • There is a "feel" to this album. A punk rock, earthy energy that has an edge yet is comfortable. Buffalo Tom meets the Clash in a dive bar playing their hearts out to the loaded locals.
  • Automatic high regard in my book for name dropping George Jones in the song "Jammyland". See, George Jones rules, or ruled. I love George Jones. I have 35 George Jones albums on vinyl. I buy any record of his I find. I think that the Ratchets tap in to the same comfort that I get from a George Jones record, while being completely different. I have seen George Jones live many times and was completely blown away every time. I miss George Jones. 
  • The Ratchets cover The Tom Robinson Band song "2-4-6-8 Motorway", which is one of my all time favorite songs. 
  • The packaging with this LP is fantastic. I LOVE the colors on the vinyl. They call it "piss yellow with hot pink and halloween orange twist". I call it magic. The thick record inner sleeve, with lyrics and photo gets extra points. I also scored a poster and digital download. I am very happy.
  • The Ratchets made me learn a new word:
  1. an old person, especially one who has become weak or senile.
  • Check the video for "Dotard At The Dial":

  • I love the locked groove at the end of the record. I actually listened to it for a good ten minutes.
  • Pressing Information
    • 400pcs. - 12" Piss Yellow w/ Hot Pink & Halloween Orange Twist Vinyl (Retail Version) 
    • 100pcs. - 12" Black Vinyl (Sold as set w/ PPR008, PPR209, PPR215, PPR216) 
    • 1000pcs. - Digipak CD

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Noi!se "Mass Apathy" 12"

"Mass Apathy" 12"
Pirates Press Records
Released: November 23, 2018

  • Noi!se is a punk rock band from Tacoma Washington.
  • I have been listening to punk rock for about 38 years. I have heard so much punk rock, that new material in 2018 sometimes goes in one ear and out the other. Noi!se is a current band that stands above the crowd, motivates me to write about, because I want to make sure you know about them. I love their sound. The guitars, the anthemic drive and power along with distinct vocal tonality and delivery.
  • Skinhead Rob (TRANSPLANTS/RANCID) lends some vocal assistance to "Mass Apathy".
  • This 12" vinyl single includes the one song ("Mass Apathy"), with a silkscreen print of the band's logo and "Mass Apathy" on the non-playable b-side. The outer edge of the record itself has a ring of bullets milled out... bringing to mind a punk/metal bullet belt ala Motorhead. The poly sleeve has a silkscreen of "We bury kids and we say 'It's a Shame'. Concern lasts less than murderers minutes of fame. It can all change in the blink of an eye. How Many More Children Have to Die."
  • In response to the recent barrage of public shootings, especially those involving school children, NOi!SE and Pirates Press Records will donate all proceeds from this release to several charities.
  • The five winning charities will be announced on December 7th, 2018.
  • Give "Mass Apathy" a listen below on Spotify or YouTube. 

  • Get yourself a copy of the physical record. This is a mandatory record to add to your vinyl collection. It hits on so many levels (physical uniqueness, charity, kids and the song is spot on)!
  • If you are a digital person, head on over to bandcamp:


Noi!se FB
Pirate Press Store

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

T.S.O.L "1 Thing"

"1 Thing" 12"
Release Date: March 2019

  • I did not know who Amerie was until Jack Grisham (vocals) told us T.S.O.L was covering "1 Thing"
  • Jack says: “I like go-go music and soul and anything that really moves. I first heard Amerie’s “1 Thing” in 2005, when it was released. F*cking infectious man, the way that groove keeps rolling, and she’s such a great vocalist. The lyrics were your basic relationship trip but then it hit me, this isn’t just a song about some dude, these lyrics read like a song to a system or a government that’d been up to no good. When she sang, “memories keep ringing bells” I was thinking of the state of our union today, the turmoil in our society, and where we’d been before—I was musing on our involvement in the Middle East, Latin America, Vietnam. I was thinking about the dirty deeds that this nation had been up to and then she sang, “why don’t you just admit it” and I realized that no one in power, not in this country, was ever gonna admit that we were wrong.” 
  • This is the video for Amerie's version of "1 Thing" (I now love Amerie):

  • This is T.S.O.L.'s version of "1 Thing" thanks to Spotify:

  • or YouTube:

  • I dare you to hit play on both Amerie's video above and T.S.O.L.'s spotify version at as close to the same time as you can.
  • Hardline Entertainment is taking pre-orders for the vinyl, which will be available in transparent red, white or blue and will have a black and white silk screened American flag on the reverse side. Limited to 150 units of each color. Records ship late March 2019.
  • Order up!

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Goatwhore "Vengeful Ascension" live at One Centre Square

"Vengeful Ascension"
Metal Blade
Released: June 23, 2017

  • I love Goatwhore. "Vengeful Ascension" is their 7th full length release.
  • I'm not sure I can pick a favorite Goatwhore album, but right now, this record still has me excited almost a year and a half after the initial release. 
  • Sammy Duet (Acid Bath/Crowbar guitarist) formed Goatwhore in 1997. I love Acid Bath. That New Orleans sludge phenomenon fascinates me and there is a Celtic Frost influence, which is a beautiful thing.
  • There is a freaking spellbook edition of "Vengeful Ascension"
  • Goatwhore is playing a gig with Casualties, Black Tusk, Parasitix and Great American Ghost at One Centre Square in Easton PA, Friday November 30, 2018. A show not to be missed.

  • Check the video for "Chaos Arcane":

  • And check the video for the title track:
  • And while you are at it, check the video for "Mankind Will Have No Mercy"

Oceanwires "Beware the Heartless" single

"Beware the Heartless" single
Released: November 9, 2018

Niffer Calderwood Photography!!! 

  • Seattle band Oceanwires debut album "There Never Was A Was" will be released on February 15, 2019.
  • While I don't usually get around to telling you about a band's release until much closer to the release date, I have been provided a digital advance of "There Never Was A Was" and I can not contain myself. I just love it.
  • Check out their video of the single "Beware the Heartless" that was recently released in advance of the full-length:
  • Steve Fisk (Nirvana, Screaming Trees etc...) produced the LP.
  • Steve Fisk also released one of my favorite CDs, "Over and Thru The Night".

Oceanwires FB
Oceanwires Page

Sunday, October 14, 2018

The Bar Stool Preachers "Grazie Governo"

The Bar Stool Preachers
"Grazie Governo"
Pirates Press
Released: August 3, 2018

  • "Grazie Governo" means "Thank you government" (Italian)
  • The  Bar Stool Preachers are from the UK and meld anthemic punk ala Dropkick Murphys with an uptempo punk-ska drive. The mix is both classic and modern punk and ska influences with a precision that is rarely matched with this kind of success.
  • This is a smooth, well-crafted and pro sounding record.
  • Check the video for the title track:

  • Aimee from the Interrupters provides guest vocals on "Choose My Friends". I am sure this song brings the house down every time it is played live. Check the video here:

  • While you are at it, check the video for "Warchief":

  • This is the band:

  • Pressing information looks like this:
    • 1,500 pcs. - 12" Black Vinyl (Retail Version) 
    • 250 pcs. - 12" Milky Clear with Black Smoke & Black, Bone and Blood Red Splatter Vinyl w/ 3 Flexis (PPR Mailorder Version)
    • 250 pcs. - 12" Bone Vinyl w/ 3 Flexis (PHD Version) 
    • 250 pcs. - 12" Oxblood Vinyl w/ 3 Flexis (Band Version) 
    • 100 pcs. - 12" Gold Vinyl w/ 3 Flexis (Randale Version) 
    • 100 pcs. - 12" Silver Vinyl w/ 3 Flexis (Coretex Version) 
    • 550 pcs. - 12" "Lava" Colored Vinyl w/ 3 Flexis

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Restorations LP5000

Tiny Engines
Released: September 28, 2018

  • Restorations are a five piece emo/alt/punk rock band from Philly PA.
  • This is their first album in four years.
  • The first three albums were entitled "LP1", "LP2" and "LP3". 
  • I do not know what happened to albums 4 through 4,999.
  • I've not heard any of their music other than the seven tracks on "LP5000".
  • Others have referenced the following when describing this album: "Springsteen fronting Fugazi", Sunny Day Real Estate, Modest Mouse...
  • This is their video for "The Red Door"

  • This is their bandcamp for "LP5000" so you can listen and order a copy.

  • As of October 13, 2018, there were only 20 copies of the 1,000 copies available on vinyl.
  • They are currently out on tour, ending up back in Philly at the First Unitarian Church on October 21, 2018

  • These Philadelphians know how to write a song. Out front grabbing the attention is the husky, raspy vocals, the emo (not pop punk emo) sound and making this all relevant and noticeable is that Restorations know how to create a sound that includes enough flair but not so much as to overwhelm (aka this is very listenable, creative with just enough of a challenge).
  • This is what they look like:

Frank FOE

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

FOD "No School No Core" Pre Order

"No School No Core"
SRA Records
Pre-Order Cassette, LP, CD, digital

F.O.D. is a band I have joyfully witnessed live more than any other band on the planet. Weston and Russian Meatsquats are the next closest in quantity. 

I've also yelled "F.O.D." at shows almost as much as I have yelled "Slayer".

I have seen F.O.D. in the 80s, 90s, 00s, and 10s. 

Their sound makes my blood travel through my body faster than any other band.
F.O.D. nourishes my soul. 

F.O.E. loves F.O.D.!!!

Below, in the embedded player from SRA Records, you can listen to the two pre-release, streaming songs 

  • 10. "We Can Be Stupid" and 
  • 14. "I Grabbed the Broken Part" 

Head on over to SRA and pre-order "No School No Core" (LP, CD, cassette)!!!
Pre Order F.O.D. "No School No Core"

While you are at it, you might as well order any F.O.D. you may have missed over the years SRA Records Link !


SRA Records FB

Monday, August 27, 2018

Tile Change the World Video from LP "Come On Home Stranger"

"Change the World"
Official Video from "Come On Home, Stranger" LP

See album review here:


The Morlocks "Bring on the Mesmeric Condition"

The Morlocks
"Bring on the Mesmeric Condition"
Hound Gawd
Release date: August 31, 2018

I don't know The Morlocks.
First album was released in 1985. 
They had LPs on Voxx and Epitaph.
I know a million bands... seen thousands...
I know the Motards, the Mortals, Mono Men, Marked Men, Monarchs, Mortal Micronotz, Moxy, Mud City Manglers, Mudhoney, Muffs, Mule, Mummies, the Makers and Mutants.

Up until a couple of years ago I didn't know I missed out on Sonny Vincent and the Testors. Sometimes you just miss things and then get to fall in love with an entire discography!

Not sure why I don't know the Morlocks. 

Maybe you know the Morlocks. Maybe you already are drooling over the release of "Bring on the Mesmeric Condition".

I know I am loving it!

This is garage punk. Part psychobilly, part punk rock, part garage, all energy. 

The DΓΌsseldorf, Germany based band reminds me of all my favorite parts of the Flesheaters. I love the Flesheaters. I think if you are like me and you've ever liked the NY Dolls, Vibrators, New Bomb Turks, Cramps, Stooges, Devil Dogs or almost anything on Estrus or Crypt records, you will dig. 

Currently based out of Dusseldorf, vocalist Leighton Koizumihas has gathered a lineup that will ring a lot of bells... including bands even I know...  Rob Louwers - drums (Fuzztones, Q-65, Link Wray), Oliver Pilsner - Bass (Fuzztones, Cheeks, Montesas, Magnificent Brotherhood), Bernadette - Guitar (Sonny Vincent, Humpers ) and Marcello Salis (Gravedigger V, Hangee V).

This will be released on CD, digitally  and on vinyl (with download cards), with a limited edition of 100 copies on violet vinyl (how the hell am I gonna score this one!).

"Time To Move" was released as a single elsewhere awhile back. Give it a listen and love.

Nice to finally meet you Morlocks!

Hound Gawd Morlocks
Morlocks FB

The Droogettes "Clockwork Girls" LP Violated Records

The Droogettes
"Clockwork Girls"
Violated Records
Released: August 2018

The Droogettes are an all-female punk band from Philadelphia. "Clockwork Girls" is their debut LP after plenty of EP and split releases. 

I have had the pleasure of watching The Droogettes evolve as a band from their beginning in 2012. They've already played Rebellion twice and have a split EP with Vice Squad. That is legendary.

They are the real deal. This is no swindle. No put on. Jenn is one of the toughest lead vocalists of any identity. Rachel is a punk rock legend (here, around the world). Elija rips that guitar with style and power. Ginger pulls double duty, also playing drums in the Ramoms (all-female Ramones tribute band).  

The songs are tough, roots punk and oi, with hooks that stick and a UK early 80s feel. 

Check the videos for "No Apologies", "Bitter Old Man" and "Teenage Nights". If the video and song "No Apologies" doesn't sell you on this band, I would think you are possibly reading the wrong blog. The video/song is a classic.  

As a record nerd, I purchased both colors of vinyl... and just so you know, I don't do that often. One copy is usually good enough for me. I love this band. Feel they deserve my support and I walk around with their songs banging around the inside of my head. Give them a try, I suspect you will love them too.

Pressing Information
200 Hi-Lighter Yellow 
300 Purple Splatter 
also on CD

My son recommends the "gatorade lemon lime" (hi-lighter yellow) color vinyl. 

Looking forward to seeing The Droogettes as the open for the Vibrators in the Lehigh Valley PA and wish I could see them on the cruise!


The Blankz "(I Just Want To) Slam"

The Blankz
"(I Just Want To) Slam" b/w "Baby's Turning Blue"
Slope Records
Released: August 10, 2018

This is 7" #2 in a series of nine from The Blankz.

Follow this link for the write up of the first 7": The Blankz "White Baby" / "Sissy Glue"

I love how Tommy Blank explains why they wrote a song called "(I Just Want To) Slam"; "We wanted to capture some of the nervousness and unpredictability of our early experiences at punk shows". 

Yes, The Blankz are not teenagers and neither am I. But I certainly do remember the excitement of being a teenager and how excited I was to join in and/or start a circle pit. Skanking, slamming and just releasing all of that energy. 

Check the lyrics video here: (I Just Want To) Slam lyric video

There is a lot to be said for keeping things simple and remembering your roots. A fun energetic song that brings a smile to my face 36 years after stepping in to my first pit. 

The Blankz vantage point from the pit is a little different than one of my other favorite songs about the pit, from "This is Boston Not L.A." by the band Decadence. The Decadence version of "Slam" includes the lyrics "I'm gonna bash my brains out, I kill people I don't know, I'm gonna kick and scream and crush, I'm gonna hit him from behind", while the Blankz are trying to "dodge those fists". 

"Baby's Turning Blue" is a quick point (1:42 to be exact) about our Opioid fixated society. Tommy Blank is a sober man and the song paints an image of young punk facing addiction. 

I love the infectious, bouncy, new wave, meets vintage punk of the Blankz. Think the Dickies meets the Briefs at a Buzzcocks show in Los Angeles. Looking forward to all the 7"s. 

I also want to point out that Slope records has some other amazing releases. Hop on over to their webstore and check out releases by N.D., U.P.S, U.S. Bombs, Feederz, Exterminators and many others.

Frank FOE

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Tile "Come On Home, Stranger"

"Come On Home, Stranger"
Limited Appeal
Release date: Friday, August 17th 2018

Hometown Record Release Show:
Friday August 17, @ St. Bernards, Bethlehem PA

Tile's "Come On Home, Stranger" deftly combines the best of vintage noise rock offered by record labels such as AmRep, SubPop and Touch & Go with current heavy musical influences for twelve songs of delicious mayhem.  

Morekin photo by Jamie Heim

TILE is Michael Morekin (guitar/vocals), Ray Gurz (bass/vocals) and Michael Dumoff (drums). Tile is headquartered in the Lehigh Valley Pennsylvania (Allentown and vicinity), which is also where I have resided for most of the last five decades.

"Come On Home, Stranger" was permanently, sonically documented at Shards Recording Studio in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania with the assistance of owner and engineer Matt Molchany.

The general musical theme is a dirge, a word which here means a mournful song or piece of music. You have feedback, pounding and yelling. Influences from Unsane, Cows, Chokebore, Laughing Hyenas, Torche/Floor and maybe a nod to fellow Pennsylvania noise-mongers, Pissed Jeans. 

All those influences are expertly crafted to create twelve songs that are actually catchy, a word which here means a tune that is instantly appealing and memorable. Dirge with hooks.

I asked Ray if he had lyrics available for me to read. I am horrible at understanding even the most distinct and easily interpreted lyrics. So, no. Ray didn't get me any lyric sheet. So that has left me to figure this out on my own.

With that said, I truly believe the band must have spent much of the last four years since their debut LP, seriously considering the titles, lyrics and order the songs would be arranged on the record.

Tile leads you in with the inviting album title, "Come On Home, Stranger", complete with welcoming artwork.

Photo by Tim_Wynarczuk

The first track starts off with an upbeat, killer drum beat, then brutal low end guitars with plenty of feedback. Oh yeah. This is gonna be fun. The track is titled "Change The World", with the (as I hear it) lyric, "I'm gonna change the world, when I wake up, I'm gonna push you down, when I stand up". So yeah, changing the world is a good thing, but we start to see another side with the qualifications, a word which here means a restriction in meaning or application: a limiting modification

Track two is called "Swing Away", which has a ruthless Torche-like riff. I interpret swinging away, as a baseball term, like reaching for the fences, going for broke... but then you hear the lyrics snarling "drama queen" and "be nice to your sister" and I get the impression we are not really having fun on this record and maybe the invitation might be more sinister than welcoming.

"Be More", track three, sounds like more inspirational talk. The musical direction is abrasive and pounding. There is a Big Black feel to a portion of the song (awesome). When they belt out, "He's home", it doesn't sound quite like, "yeah, Daddy's home". More like a dire pronouncement. "Trying to get the joke, trying to get you to smoke".  

It becomes completely clear by track four, "Father", that any possible cheery implications  the title may have lead you to believe were quite sarcastic.  "You left too soon". Geez. I can't make out much other but this song feels brutally devastating. A magnificently executed musical death march.

Photo by Jamie Heim

All hope is erased with "Flammable Human" (subtlety is gone), which is yet another example of Tile's talent for arranging different styles, sounds, direction to create memorable songs. These tracks are crafted. 

"I'll End You" begins as a haunting procession, developing into a heavy sludge attack and ending with an obvious threat.

We get a breath with "Play Safe", which of course leads to a false sense of security. One of the most driving songs of the dozen. The guitar tone touches that sound that I so love. Mixed with a drum beat that always brings to mind the Exploited. You may not get my reference, but believe me, it brings a vicious smile to my face. An explosive, hardly safe song. "Oh God help me".

After the driving, "Play Safe", remarkably, "Landmines" takes it to another level of energy, tension and release. 

"One Cold Knife" sounds like we are about to bring this story to a conclusion, and this sounds like The Cherubs covering early Saccharine Trust songs (this is a good thing and in my mind sounds like this song). "Lard Rats" continues in this brutal, punishing, heavy noise theme. "Hey there, nightmare, its been so long since I've seen you".

Doubling back to the enticing titles that lead to beautiful ugliness themes, up next we have have "Pleasure Chaser". I think Ray is telling us "Doomsday is here". Again, the musically distinctive parts of the songs are varied and expertly assembled. Building and crashing, effectively creating moods, painting a picture, taking you on an aural ride.

Photo by Jamie Heim

The closure occurs in "Room Ten". I think there was physical and emotional pain in that room. Just down the hall from Black Flag's "Room 13".

But then again, I can't understand lyrics very well. But I can understand music... and "Come On Home, Stranger" is a mighty album that will be on my best of 2018 list... 

Give it a listen... Buy the vinyl.


Frank FOE

Check out the Rooftop Video Sessions of Tile