IMPULSE INTERNATIONAL, THE: Mini Album: 10"

Jul 14, 2011

I feel like I’m starting to sound like a broken record talking about this band. But the truth is, the International Impulse do get better and better with every record. This really is their best record yet, and they’ve had a string of pretty good records. A lot of folks are trying their hand at power pop lately, and most sound stale and fake. Not here. This sounds like it came from the late ‘70s/early ‘80s. If this was released in 1975, it would have probably come out on Bomp! or a label of similar repute. I put this on, first song, “Bicycle Rider” comes on. I think it’s pretty good. Then “Where Did the Girls Go?” follows. I think it’s even better. Then the next song comes on. That one is better, then the next, and... I almost want to laugh because this is so good it’s near unbelievable. “New Century Life,” which ends this record, has something interesting going on with it. It’s as though it’s two separate songs. The first version is more filled out with the guitar and the second version has a more stripped-down, spontaneous feel to it. No summer is complete without some Impulse International in it.

 –M.Avrg (Puta, myspace.com/putarecords)

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NOISE ADDICT: 10,000 Kids with Guitars: 2 x LP

January 31, 2018
In the clip from Squirt TV—comedian Jake Fogelnest’s short-lived MTV talk show—where I first learned about Noise Addict, Fogelnest and the band shop for CDs in New York. Bassist Romy Hoffman and guitarist Dan Mapp rave about Smog and Cibo Matto respectively. Singer and guitarist Ben Lee sings Devo’s “Mongoloid” while tapping on drummer Saul Smith’s shoulders. They are all sixteen years old, maybe even younger. They’re babies. This is in 1996, and I’m in a small town in upstate New York, and I’m also sixteen. The world is suddenly filled with savants, on TV and on tour. The world is suddenly filled with possibilities. Or rather, it’s no longer out of the realm of possibility for a high school band to: have records out on the Ecstatic Peace and Grand Royal labels; open for Fugazi; be smart/savvy enough to know that if you’re going to model yourself after anyone, it should be Jonathan Richman (it took me years to figure this out). This is a long way of saying I have a personal and nostalgic stake in Noise Addict’s collection, more than I thought I did, and the effect of hearing these songs again has been weirdly exhilarating. I recognize not everyone had my very important teenage experience, and maybe what you want is something not ‘90s, not vaguely K Records-ish or hip NY alt rock, not the range of truly adolescent feelings as they can be presented through guitars. But if there is some part of you that still thinks you could get out of this place if you start a band, that cool things are around the corner, that your dumb anguish has some legitimacy, that a “Let’s Lynch the Landlord” cover makes possibly more sense when you still live at home, this is very much also for you. –Matt Werts (Numero Group, numerogroup.com)
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