Monthly Archives: September 2014

Pissed Jeans – Shallow

Track by track review for Pissed Jeans remastered Shallow LP, out October 7 on Sub Pop


I’m sick – Garage and in your face describing the virus in his body – maybe Garage No Age playing in the club style of Butthole Surfers
Boring Girls – Jesus and Mary Chain but with more direct vocals avoiding being lost in the fuzzbox
Ugly Twin (I’ve Got) – Garage Fuzz
Ashamed of my Cum – is this why punk rock exists? Awful lyrics but sure it’s all about shock eh?
Closet Marine – I pledge to Uncle sam, ashamed at who I am. Riff a rama
I broke My Own Heart – A riff, over a bounding drum beat with some almost spoken word. Black Flag trying to jam slowly
Little Sorrell – Black Flag ode to Stonewall Jacksons horse.
Wachovia – crescendo of guitar cymbals aplenty. Noise city but Amebix are sceaming at me here, Largactyl, remember that?


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Hope Show 75 – the lowdown

Hope Show 75 the lowdown

1. The Vaselines – High Tide Low Tide
2. Death In THe Sickroom – Brick To The Face
3. We Were Evergreen – Daughters
4. Omelette – Happiness
5. Pissed Jeans – Boring Girls
6. Sissy – Nothing
7. Mika Miko – End Of Time
8. No Age Escarpment
9. System of Hate – Infected
10. Get Human – Holding On
11. Kimberley Steaks – Wrong Exit
12. LaChance – Scars of Youth
13. Dead Kennedys – I Kill Children
14. Paranoid Visions w/ Steve Ignorant – When
15. Neurotics – Does Anyone KNow where the March is
16. Minor Threat – I Don’t Wanna Hear It
17. Slow Science – Arctic Radio Broadcast
18. The Cut Ups – I say no to air conditioning
19. So Cow – Outskirts

I’ve gotta say I’m enjoying the new Vaselines album, it has enough of the C86 vibe to bring back happy memories of twee pop but it;s a hard version of twee. Great tunes with some distortion

Death in the sickroom are from Dublin, always nice to be able to support the hometown. They released a single in July, Brick to the face is from that

When I saw we were evergreen in London I was blown away by the pop beauty of their songs and their latest album doesn’t quite reflect that breezy happy go lucky sound. Studio recordings can be hard to capture live excitement but believe me live they are a joy.

Omelette are a Dublin band from the 90’s (hard to believe it’s that long ago!!). Their one and only album resurfaced recently and I thought it’d be worth your while listening to them and it gives us a chance to move on from the pop start but not too drastic a change

Pissed Jeans released their debut album, Shallow, in 2005. SUb Pop have seen it fit to remaster it and bring it to a wider audience. Manic, razy attack on your senses. Imagine if Butthole Surfers started hanging out with No Age..

Sissy are another Dublin band, pretty new to me. They have brought their attitude out from the garage on to their new ep

Mika Miko played with the aforementioned NO age in Dublin many moons ago. Their CYSLABF album on Kill Rock Stars still gets plenty of airing on my stereo

Seeing as I’ve mentioned them twice already I thought I’d give you a bit of No Age, no easy listening one mind you, that’d be too fair on ya.

Time to go a bit more punk rock sounding and play some recent releases from the world of UK DIY. I may have played System of hate recently but their Ashes ep has four tracks so Infected it is tonight.

Get Human are neighbours of System of Hate and I’m loving their current release for its optimism as much as its sound. I’ve played them the past two weeks so three in a row is a bit f a record for this show. I promise to move on next week, maybe.

Make that a take is a pretty prolific label in Dundee and the next two are from this land. They said Yes to Scotish independence so maybe it should now be known as the peoples republic of Dundee, home to punk rockers Kimberley Steaks, LaChance and many more

I love doing this radio show, where else would you get a chance to play we were evergreen and Dead Kennedys on the same show. The Dead Kennedys! What a band.

Steve Ignorant collaborated with Paranoid Visions on last years excellent album, When. Their set at rebellion was pretty good so thought it nice to follow Jello with this

Speaking of punk rock I see Steve Drewett from the Neurotics might be bringing out a solo record soon. I hope the songs are even half as good as ones like this.

Ending this set is Minor Threat, I Don’t Wanna Hear it. What a song! I heard this week that Fugazi are releasing their first demo over the next few weeks, exciting times from DC

Slow Science have just released their new record, launched last night. Like Adebisi Shank they have released it just in time to split up. A real shame

I don’t think the Cut-Ups have split. Their album is still out on Boss Tuneage, get it before they do split

And so the show ends. So Cow from Galway are heading across some ocean or sea to play gigs outside Ireland soon. Pretty much ignored they have been on the go for a number of years, slogging away regardless of what people say.

Stay punk!

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Kimberley Steaks – Live And Die in West Scotland

Kimberley Steaks
Live and die in West Scotland
Make That A Take Records

The latest collection from Dundee punkers Kimberley Steaks. Very much early East Bay Sound. It couild be Green Day, maybe Crimpshrine, maybe Fuel or Jawbreaker but most definitely their Scotish cousins. 12 songs dealing with loss and despair and a sense of hopelesness that you’d hope they hang out with LaChance to keep some positivity going.

Short punchy songs from the city that Voted yes to Scotland’s independance. The peoples republic of Dundee eh?

Check it out


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Get Human – Garden Leave

Get Human
Garden Leave
Out now

get Human
Leeds 5 piece with a great diy attitude. Self released ep with sing along punk tunes. Not too disimilar to LaChance but their fi isn’t as low. It’s mid paced punk rock with some sing along backing parts “There is no hope in hell for me” is an interesting sentence to sing out loud while cycling into work. Thankfully I stoppped before going in through the doors. This is sing along, mid tempo and catchy as that virus that’s flying through the kids schools at the moment.


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La Chance – Old Haunts EP

LA Chance
Old Haunts
Scars Of Youth


“Can we break out of this
endless streams of bills and stress
I know I’ve got this in me
I feel it bursting out of my chest”

Scream LA Chance, well not exactly scream but in that lo-fi sing along punk sound. They may be from Scotland, but it is that Gainesville sing along clever sound bursting through. 5 people singing at any one time which is the terrace chant that works for me. Lyrically they are spot on. Instead of singing about absent frineds LaChance have singled out friends before we lose them. There is a poignancy to it all but how often do we say “I should have said that while they were here”. Castle Rock Cobras does just that by Calling out a toast before the end. It’s not all doom and gloom as inspiration does break through from these Dundee punks. “No matter what the cost, it’s better to have tried and lost” could come from this bike is a pipe bomb.

There’s been times over the past few days when the realities of life away from this keyboard have confronted me but I take strength from LaChance’s words advice and “Set fire to each new day, no matter what your head says, cos bright hearts burn out slow”.

Plenty of lo-fi treble doesn’t make a rebel but it is just as rebellious for us all to help each other out and LaChance does just that with this “Old haunts” ep

niall hop

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The Vaselines – V for Vaselines

The Vaselines
V for Vaselines
Rosary Music


A track by track guide to the new Vaselines Sing along pop album

High Tide Low Tide – Very Scotish pop feel, BMX Bandits esque, ba pa pa pa pa ba pa pa pa pa like a pop Ramones
The Lonely LP – Almost Heavenly esque
Inky Lies – Belle And Sebastian cool
Crazy Lady – chuggy pop from C86
Single Spies – pretty pop, like current contemporaies Allo Darlin
One Lost Year – more rock riff, Ramones esque
Earth Is Speeding – pop rock
False heaven – heavenly once more
Number One Crush – sing along Bmxx Bandits cover the Ramones, being with you crushes my IQ
Last Half Hour – slower louder sound, maybe Velvets. “Switch on switch off, dim the lights low”


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Sewage – lp

s/t lp


Sewage were active in the 90’s in New York around the Lower east side tompkins square park area. My image of tompkins square is a joe strummer mural on the corner as you enter. It is an area for activists and cultural terrorism, not to be confused with actual war like terrorism. They lived and played on the streets for a number of years but stopped for a decade. Now with a direction to “Celebrate our liberties which the Police and Real Estate are always looking to take away. Let’s keep our rights and livelihood safe.” they have released a record. With a design from the crusty gutter I was surprised on hearing the songs. It’s less crust and more rock with both feet in punk rock.

There’s swathes of the Damned and Culture Shock and while their Rock’n’Roll Revolution – may not be Irelands Paranoid Visions they still have that punky rocky feel. When singing about ‘Florida’ there is a hint to Germany’s Die Toten Hozen if they moved to NYC and sang about the sunshine state. The songs are pretty straightforward, almost 78 punk feel with some high pitched guitar in all the right parts. It’s good to see Sewage still punking out and still wanting to raise their voice through the gentrification.

Check out more here


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Having A Laugh & Having A Say – trevhagl aoutobiography

Having a Laugh & Having A Say
not another Bloody Punk Rock Autobiography
Trev Hagl
self published
Savage Amusement Publication


So this is the ultimate in DIY. Self written (no ghosts writing this), self published and self distributed. Of course this is not a record from a band, or a fanzine of which trev has written many. It’s a 132 page A5 book.

I’ve always been a bit uncomfortable with autobiography. You have to write about yourself and feel that your life is important enough for people to want to read about it. It’s not like putting something into your diary and forgetting about it. This is all about thinking your tales are interesting enough for people to want to read. And then rewriting them with whatever glasses you may have on after the tides of time pass. Thankfully in Trevs case they are.

So what has his life entailed? Fanzines, records, music, gigs and lots of beer. Some politics, some attempts at shocking people (isn’t punk rock about pushing the boundaries?) and everyday life in between.

If I hadn’t read this book I would not have been reminded of Hilda Murrell or of the UDM and how they tried to break the miners strike, or Bile Ducts and how their primary objective was to cause objectionsm, or that Trev has a son

Writing a review, much like writing a book, is a very subjective affair and Trev isn’t afraid to proffer opinion. UK hardcore zine Fracture comes under a lot of stick, as someone who contributed to that organ and read every piece cover to cover I had forgotten letters that were aimed a t Trev’s words. Then again I do have memories of writing to trev when he was editor of HAGL but eventually the mail petered out. Maybe I had read the letters page accusing him of dodgy politics. Maybe we all took things a bit too seriously back then.

He sings the praises of German Oi band (or is it Street punk?) Oxymoron and at the end it becomes less autobigrpahical and more fanzine like. Trev offers his opinions on books to read and his views on the current state of British politics. At this stage it becomes more like and extended collection of columns for the likes of fracture and less a tale of a punk rock troubador.

Still, I feel better having read this. It is a good insight into the mind of a punk activist and advocate for change. Maybe I don’t agree with all his words and thoughts but the modus operandi of operating outside the mainstream and viewing culture as a vehicle for change is the bond that keeps us together.



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Down And Outs – Lifeline LP

Down and Outs
Boss Tuneage

down and outs

Not to be confused with similar named Down’n’outz who have members of Def Leppard and Quireboys in their ranks, Liverpools Down and outs are pretty much the anthisesis of your quintessential rock band. 10 years on the go, this is their fourth album, released last November but still worth a mention.

Their sound is a mash up of Replacements, Leatherface UK guitar hardcore mixed with Wedding Present indie jangle and a spoonful of power pop along the way. I can smell those three along with the jam and the clash and maybe green day sneaking in for a snarl every now and then if they can get past the senseless things hanging around the corner. They sing “Waking Up – it ain’t getting easy.” but they lie as it sure can be if Down and Outs are on the alarm clock

Let me take you to a different place. Being a father of three kids, two of whom play a lot of sport, I am fairly involved in Juvenile football. I coach a team and have done so for the past 6 years. We have a philosophy that as the kids want to play football we give them all a chance. We will never set out to win a league or do anything to win a game. All the kids play and we win or lose together. As the kids start to spend more time wondering or worrying about their hairstyle or their abercrombie tops we persisit in tyring to give them equal time on the pitch. If the result of a match is the scoreline at the end then don’t ask about the result. Most teams we play against have a differenet philosophy. Yeah, kids a renaturally competitive but the adults we face on the sideline aren’t trying to teach their kids fairness. They are living out their sporting fantasys through the kids, making up for that league they didn’t win in their youth.

What’s this got to do with Down and Outs? Not a lot except Down and Outs are on my team, they are trying their best and will never be good enough to sell multi plainum records. They are doing what they love and I admire them for that. I also get to enjoy their sounds which is a bonus

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Hope Show 74 – the lowdown

Hope Show 74 The Lowdown

It’s new record time, for the most part tonight. Inca Babies have new album on the way, Blacktop Speedway is from that.

Hands Up WHo Wants to Die have a record out now and bring that bass fuelled sound onto it. I played two songs from their brothers in arms, adebisi shank, last week.

King Champion Sounds made it to my top 10 of 2013 and their new record is coming out next month on Louder than war records.

Down and outs didn’t make my top 10 but their Lifeline album from last year is a pretty solid record. Yesterdays Heroes speaks a topic close to my heart. Old school heroes

Obliterations bring a refreshing old school hardcore feel into proceedings. their new record is coing out on Southern Lord, a label that’s prolifically becoming very prolific.

System of Hate are from Barnsley, not too far from Liverpools Down and puts but a few thousand miles from obliterations. Ashes of divinity is from their new record.

Molarbear are from up the road (figuratively speaking of course) in Belfast. This is a new track from them.

Cold Blue Mountain are from Chico. I love their website blurb “Listen to us. Cowards”. They scream, their have beards and they’ve an album out on October 7

Question The Mark are from South Wales and released their Smoke Signals ep in 2012. But you missed it then!!

Their mates are Bear Trade who are amazing. I keep telling you that though, someday you will listen. This album came out in May this year, you’ve gotta hear it. Coward!

More mates together are Epic Problem who I’ve also trying to get you to listen to. Maybe now you will, read my review of them here

Former Cell Mates are one of the leading lights for the previous three bands. A great English Sound and an acoustic track to calm it all down

Keeping it acoustic is Andrew Judah from Montreal, he has a new album out, it’s nice. This is from that

Howler is a self proclaimed indie band from Minneapolis, home of Arcwelder. Wonder if they know each other? Anyway they’ve a new single on Rough Trade.

Another band bringing out a new record coming out is Flies on you , this is a taster of what to expect. Have to say I don’t know who Katie Hopkins is though.

I didn’t know who Purple were until I came across their new single target out now on Play It again Sam records. It’s a pretty cool song too.

One very cool band were the great leap Forward, arising from the hot ashes of the amazing Big Flame, Great leap forward were ignorant of the music biz but put out two great 12″s This was on one of them

Gangs are from Dublin and it is good to see reekus records continuing to bring out good music. Some nice mod inspired sounds here.

Pardon Us are from Liverpool and feature some one from Down and Outs as far as I know (or should that be AFAIK?). Anyway I’ve just noticed that these, Bear trade, Down and Outs all played in Liverpool with Stay Clean Jolene last month. What a night that must have been


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