Every issue I end up waxing lyrical about the “good old days” of the late ‘80s on that mean little isle called England. When I very first got into punk at the tender age of thirteen, I used to scour MRR from cover to cover, then fire off letters to bands. That’s what you did back then. I wrote to lots of people, many who are still friends. My favorite band at the time were the Cowboy Killers from South Wales—who sounded like nothing else from where I was—Dead Kennedys meets FOD with the craziest singer I have ever seen. Beddis from the CK’s would send me his old shirts, records, and giant packages of tapes where I discovered bands like Really Red, Dicks, and the Big Boys. There was no Internet downloading, no fancy reissue; it was tapes from other punks or nothing. Without that friendship I’m not sure I would have ended up where I am today (a grand assertion, but most likely true). The Cowboy Killers imploded in the ‘90s and since then I have waited for Beddis to get something else rolling. After jail time, kids, and realizing he couldn’t resist the pull of DIY punk, we have Bad Sam, featuring Kip the original CK’s drummer, some members of Dub War, and other elder statesmen of the South Wales scene. No disappointment here whatsoever. A similar sound to the Killers, maybe slightly more metallic with Beddis’s deranged vocals and songs like “Black John Wayne” (about Obama), “Snake with Tits” (about Thatcher), “Dicks with Dogs,” etc. This disc was self-released with only three hundred copies, so I would suggest getting out there and grabbing one before it’s eBay time. One of my favorite releases this year by far. Magic.
–Tim Brooks (Kriminal, [email protected])