Autistic Youth: Brings up a philosophical question I often think about when dealing with music. If a band (The Observers) who were amazing, broke up too soon (in my estimation), how do I feel about a band (Autistic Youth) who basically picked up the torch and ran down another alley with it? It gets into an involved algorithm: 1.) How much time has passed? 2.) Is it a straight-up rip or did they come to similar conclusions independently? 3.) Does it rock in and of itself beyond any itches it may scratch by being so familiar? I’ll say this—Autistic Youth are on to something extremely powerful and well worth listening to and they just happen to sound like the best of The Observers (see issue #47 for what they actually sound like). Cola Freaks: Their previous 7” sounded like Vicious-lite mixed with Knugen Faller-lite, but something big clicked into place, and they take some of the sting out of all those great Swedish punk revival bands in the Ny Vag tradition that’ve broken up left, right, and center. This music heart’s still pumpin’ new blood no matter how many times it’s volleyed into another set of bodies. Great stuff all around.
–todd (Blackwater/Taken By Surprise/Sabotage)