Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Haymaker - It Only Gets Worse

Among the crop of “newer” hardcore bands, Haymaker, in my opinion is on top of the list. Of course, members of this insane band came from Left For Dead, Chokehold, the Swarm, and the Cursed. After releasing several singles and splits with Fucked Up and Oxbaker just to name a few, they’re long-awaited full-length album was finally released in 2002.

Twenty five songs about cops (and how they hate them!), skateboarding and lots more. It included the cover "Burning Chemicals", originally done by the NUNFUCKERS, "A Million More Dead Cops" (MDC), "Life, Love, Revenge" (UNBROKEN), and "From the Cradle, to the Pavement" (SUBHUMANS). These guys are very pissed and reminded me of Infest a lot, which is a very good thing if you may ask. Add in Pushead’s artwork and it’s truly a killer!

Don’t take my word for it, here’s what the ‘pros’ have to say:

Thrash N Burn (Finland)

“BEST RECORD OF 2002!? Awesome heavy hardcore combining thrashy speed, great riffs, heavy mosh parts and a rude as fuck attitude. Haymaker brings the shit - negative hardcore 2002!”


“Slightly raw and heavy old school hardcore with all the speed and anger one would expect from the genre. They blaze through 25 songs in 22 minutes, and they mean fuckin' business. Obviously the songs almost never hit the one minute mark, but the writing is still intense as hell, and they know how to pack a fucking punch in 45 seconds or less that's for damn sure. There are tons of brutal breakdowns, but not in a goofy metalcore sense, they just add some flare to the tracks and are also a little bit darker somehow, which is unusual. They also thrown down a cover of the Nunfuckers' "Burning Chemicals", and it's incredible! If this is any indication of what the Nunfuckers had to offer back in the 80's, I've got some hunting to do! The production works out fine. Ever! ything is pretty even as far as both tones and the mix are concerned. I'd turn up the bass a little bit, being careful not to muddy up the sound. But other than that I have no qualms. The guitars are rugged but mesh perfectly with the vicious vocal shouts/screams, the drums are natural and do their thing, etc. The cover art is done by Pushead, so you know what to expect there. Skulls, eyeballs, the usual. The color scheme seems different from his other work, but whatever. The lyrics are bitter as hell and attack various topics, but humorous song titles like "God Can Fuck Hymnself" and "Who Wants to Kill a Millionaire?" should offer some insight there. But don't get the wrong idea, there's some serious shit here too, "Believe everything you fuckin' see, 'Cause those in charge wouldn't lie, Rest assured while you're sleeping, They're creating new ways for you to dieSÿ" This is an awesome fucking record. As with the vast majority of bands that play this style, Haymaker isn't exa! ctly doing something new, but I do feel like they have more to offer than a lot of the other bands out there, and they are leaning towards a sound that has enough diversity to really make a difference. Definitely recommended. There's only so much to say about a CD like this, but it fucking kills, so check it out.“

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Scratch Acid - the Greatest Gift

Scratch Acid played a huge part in the noisy underground movement of the 1980s; they took punk to the dirtiest, dingiest mudhole they could find and sullied it from top to bottom until it looked and sounded like some hell-bound bogeyman. It's not too far-fetched to think of Scratch Acid as the American equivalent of the Birthday Party, the Texans donning the mantle that was dropped when the BP disbanded. The Greatest Gift contains everything the band ever recorded, including a few lo-fidelity instrumentals. Scratch Acid never received the notice it deserved, but the musicians could pound out brilliantly frenzied and highly original post-punk/noise rock that sometimes rivals the material released by singer David Yow and bassist David Sims' future (and much more well known) project, the Jesus Lizard. The first eight songs were originally released in 1984 as an eponymous EP; from the opening crashing bars of "Cannibal" to the terrifying lyrics heard on "Lay Screaming" (a song which reads like something culled from a medieval book about torture), this band obviously never had any desire to control itself. Only one slight reprieve can be found in the relatively tender "Owner's Lament," a song replete with weeping strings. Songs nine through 20 first saw the light of a sickly day as Just Keep Eating, Scratch Acid's one and only full-length that found the band expanding its musical palette: insane noise rock numbers ("Eyeball," "Holes"), jaunty, faux lounge grooves ("Amicus"), goofy Zeppelin-esque riffs ("Cheese Plug"), and a spot-on cover of the Webber-Rice rocker "Damned for All Time," complete with exclamatory horns. The remainder of the disc comprises the songs from their definitive statement, the 1987 Berserker EP. A little more money went into this recording; as the sound quality is better than on Just Keep Eating, it was definitely worth it. "Mary Had a Little Drug Problem" and "Flying Houses" are whirlwinds of pounding drums, foreboding basslines, and scathing, blinding guitar phrases. The band never played so well or wrote better songs. Highly recommended to any Jesus Lizard fan and noise rock/hardcore punk aficionado.

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Richard and Linda Thompson - Shoot Out the Lights

We went to my sister’s house in Antipolo (a suburb of Manila) during the Independence Day long weekend. I have nothing to do much there since there’s no Internet connection and all, so I dusted off my DVD collection I left there when my wife & I decided to live in the city. I found my Richard Thompson DVD when he played the Austin City Limits show. It showcased the whole concert, not just the 30 minutes of performance featured in the said TV show. It reminded me how much I worshipped this guy’s guitar playing. The set was half acoustic and the other half electric. With him was a guy on an upright bass and a drummer. That’s it! But this guy rocked the audience like no other. So upon returning to the city, I immediately put on the Shoot Out the Lights CD. This record still kicks my ass, not the ass kicking I get with say ENT but a different kind of kick altogether.

He recorded this album with his wife, alternating vocal duties through out. It was originally released back in 1982 when their marriage was on the brink of disaster. But the songs here were written 1 or 2 years prior so there’s not much of a strain here. There are also hints of Fairport Convention, his former band, especially on Back Street Slide.

Hope you enjoy this as much as I do.

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Microdisney - Singles & B Sides

Microdisney, I first heard on WXB 102.7 FM, the sorely missed radio station here in the Manila. I think it was 1984 or 1985 when I heard Harmony Time, and they didn’t play it again (though Birthday Girl received a considerable airplay, since it’s actually the A-side and Harmony Time is the B-Side). But the song stuck in my head like a splinter and I was left hanging all this time.

Recently, I asked my friend and partner in crime, the Terrorizer, if he can find me that song. And he actually did. He got it from some long dead blog but the links are still ok. After 20 plus years of searching, I finally get to listen to that song again.

Yeah I know, I’m supposed to be punk & hardcore and stuff like that. But I got to admit, I also listen to stuff from Echo & the Bunnymen, Pale Fountains, the Lucy Show and the like. I listen almost about all types of music NOT usually played on the radio (I stopped listening to the radio in 1998 and never looked back).

Anyways, I just want to share to you all the things in my playlist. I hope you dig them as much as I do. Enjoy!

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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Frank Zappa - Hot Rats

I was listening to Frank Zappa’s Hot Rats the other night and my sister visited us and she was trying to put Tommy, my youngest, to bed. So naturally, I turned off the music. But to our surprise Tommy stood up and looked at me as if saying to turn the music on again. Even my sister knew what Tommy liked and she said to turn on the music. I didn’t know what to think. Does he like Frank Zappa or just any music I put on? So I experimented on different kinds of music. I put on the Dead Kennedys but he didn’t like it. I said to myself, it must’ve have been too noisy for him, he can’t fall asleep. So I put on some Undertones, which is relatively quieter than DK’s. But he still didn’t go to sleep and he was trying to say something to me. Finally, my sister told me to put back what I was listening to before – Zappa. So I did, and lo & behold, he went back to sleep.

I was so stoked that my kid likes Zappa more than his father! I have to say, I wasn’t a big Zappa fan and Hot Rats was just recommended to me by my buddy who’s really into that kind of music. Years back, I asked him what album of Zappa he would recommend to me. He knew that aside from punk, hardcore, crust, power pop, etc. I also listen to Miles, Coltrane & Monk. So, he told me that I should start with Hot Rats, given my musical taste and all. So I bough it and actually liked what I heard. But I wasn’t sure why he recommended Hot Rats instead of say Freak Out! I guess, he read me wrong.

Anyways, this is a really good record and a great introduction to Zappa if you haven’t heard of him and a shoutout to my son Tommy!

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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Tame the Tikbalang - Forever Shall Be

Tame the Tikbalang is one of my all-time favorite Pinoi bands, playing NYHC inspired music. I can't last a month without playing this album. But unfortunately, someone borrowed my cd and forgot to return it, I'm still looking for the f#$*#er! He's in for a beating of his lifetime!

Good thing, a friend of mine has a copy so I just made a copy and ripped it as well for good measure.

So anyone who has a"spare" cd i can score, just let me know via the coment section.


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Sky Church - Unaware/Unwarned

Unaware/Unwarned is the second release from these thrash, punk, hardcore noise-makers from the Philippines. They gained their notoriety when Jason Newsted, then with Metallica, visited the Philippines and jammed with some local bands. He was very impressed with Sky Church and I can't blame him. These brothers(!) are really, really good. Go and see for yourself!


I grabbed the picture from ebay. hehehe

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VA - Half the Battle, Play, Feud 3-way Split

Pinoi comps galore! I've posted Deadly Rhythms from the Production Line & Deep Impact compilation and now the three-way split of Half the Battle, Play and Feud.

I saw Half the Battle for the first time when they opened for Eskapo when the latter toured their home country. I was totally blown away by their performance and quickly scrounge to anything they ever recorded. This is the only one I can find, for now.

PS: I only post Filipino releases to showcase them and to show the world what we have. So, all you Pinoi Punks, go to Cartimar Recto and buy these releases. The bands need your support!

Special thanks to Lena Johnston for the scans. More power!

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VA - Deadly Rhythms from the Production Line

Another excellent Pinoi compilation. Istukas Over Disneyland (a great punk band from the Philippines), Killratio (hardcore from the Philippines), La Grita (thrash punk from California) and Eskapo (Fil-Am hardcore from Vallejo, California).

PS: I only post Filipino releases to showcase them and to show the world what we have. So, all you Pinoi Punks, go to Cartimar Recto and buy these releases. The bands need your support!

Special thanks to Lena Johnston for the scans. More power!

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VA - Deep Impact

This is a four-way "international" split from Brutal Assault from Israel, Bloody Rejects from Singapore, Omerta & No Peace in Silince both from the Philippines.

This is an awesome, ear-splitting record of metallic chaos! Enjoy!

PS: I only uploaded Filipino bands to showcase them and to show the world what we have. So, all you Pinoi punks, go to Cartimar Recto and buy these stuff! Support the band they needed it.

Special thanks to Lena Johnston for the scans. More Power!

Download Here