The Thumbs: Could a more perfect band be overlooked for so long? It fucking kills me that The Thumbs aren’t better well known. Everything they’ve released has smoked (get Last Match) and they continued to break out with more excellent songs. Dual, dueling screaming chants, spazzy and true guitar and bass, political (not too specific, not too general) lyrics, and songs that simultaneously break apart and hold like superglue. Two winners – “They Improve Ideas” and “Hour 1” on their side of the split. One Leaf: This is about the sixth Japanese band I’ve heard in the last year that hedges Clash riffs deep inside a mostly pop punk song. It’s very strange how well it works and how sneaky the riffs and chords are imbedded. The lead vocalist has a gruff, almost blown out voice, and although instruments are immaculate, almost like scalpels, the songs are OK. They just don’t have a lot of stick.

 –todd (Snuffy Smile)