Razorcake Podcast #112: With Todd and Daryl

Jun 18, 2010

Razorcake Podcast #112: With Todd and Daryl

People who have reviewed less than one hundred records are usually the ones with the most “advice” on how a record should be reviewed. It’s okay-sounding, let’s-be-fair stuff. “You should listen to the music ‘x’ amount of times before writing the review” or “You need to give everything a fair shake on its own terms” seems valid on the surface. The problem is that if you’ve been reviewing music for more than a year or two, it becomes obvious that there are bands who, without shame, attempt to sound exactly like their predecessors without the common decency of calling themselves a cover band. That’s well and fine for the band’s co-workers and close family, but that doesn’t mean it requires a reviewer a full listen to connect the dots to previous bands they’re aping. Shit, man, ninety-nine percent of the time, go to the source for full enjoyment because the sequel’s rarely half as good as the original. (See Caddyshack versus Caddyshack II for an egregious offender.)

On the other side of the coin are bands that, somehow, come to very similar musical conclusions to previous bands, although decades may have passed. These new bands aren’t copying note-for-note on a light box. They aren’t photocopying choruses. They’ve dipped into the well of history, mixed in their own original ideas, and have come up with something new. That accounts for about one percent of all bands in existence.

Punk rock’s strongest historical lineage is the music itself. Daryl and I paired up classic punk bands to current (or recently defunct) bands for a couple of reasons. One, as the editor of Razorcake, I believe the best of punk rock of today stands toe-to-toe with the best of punk rock from years past. This podcast is eleven such pairings. Two, mentioning previous bands as touchstones to current bands in a review isn’t necessarily a lazy copout or mere name dropping. If done right, it can be a valid, short-hand description of a band’s sound.

Daryl and I believe all the following bands have captured that hard-to-explain, hard-to-replicate spirit that celebrates the past and simultaneously continues to keep DIY punk so great.

-Todd Taylor

Descendents “Hope” (SST)
Ergs! “Saturday Night Crap-O-Rama” (Don Giovanni)
Negative Approach “Hypocrite” (Touch N Go)
Defect Defect “Your Move” (Residue)

Wipers “Image of Man” (Zeno)
The Estranged “Image of More” (Dirtnap)

X “When Our Love Passed Out on the Couch” (Slash)
Daylight Robbery “Ignominious Defeat” (Residue)
The Avengers “The American in Me”
Libyans “Cough It Up” (Shock To The System)

Hüsker Dü “All That Spice”
Hidden Spots “Ghost” (Mauled By Tigers)

Effigies “Body Bag” (Touch N Go)
Canadian Rifle “Follow the Leader” (Squirrel Heart)
Undertones “Jimmy Jimmy” (Sire)
Tranzmitors “Last Night” (Deranged) (Originally by the Scientists)

Dead Moon “The Way It Is” (Empty)
Shellshag “Dirty Looks” (Don Giovanni)

The Nerves “It’s Hot Outside” (Bomp)
The Carbonas “Nostalgia Buff” (Douchemaster)
The Replacements “Never Mind” (Sire)
Bent Outta Shape “Lapdog” (Recess)