NEON MANIACS / TORCHA SHED: Split: 7”

Neon Maniacs: Huh. The lead singer kinda lilts, like the lead singer of the Parasites. For a pop punk band like Parasites it’s not so weird, but for a punk band that claims to play “electric tones that will shake your bones,” while singing about zombies, the singer’s voice sounds so sunny. When they sing, “They’re going to eat you,” the result is more attacking a bowl of Count Chocula and less The Return of the Living Dead bad-ass chainsaw a zombie dog in half action. Not bad, just disarming. I was expecting more puss, ooze, and larvae. Torcha Shed: “Meet Me in the George Bar” starts off promising with warbly sirens of guitars veering into to the listener, cutting through pub noise, and providing a nice off-balance quality that’s woven through the entire song. It’s got a tension much in the vein of Cock Sparrer and the Partisans. Musically compelling, but the lyrics are ehhh. Punk rock about pubs: it’s musical territory that’s had more than its share of pint-scarred champions. (Youth Brigade’s “Old Man Bars” is a great example of a contemporary band hitting this subject right.) Chalk it up to a song that if it had different lyrics, it’d get played much more.

 –todd (Puke’n’vomit)