TOYS THAT KILL: Fambly 42: LP

Okay, I see there are several other reviews for this record in this issue. They explain the sound, so if you’ll indulge me, I want to step back and offer a larger view. Let’s unpack what DIY punk can mean on its best days. 1) DIY punk is some of the best music in the world. Ever. TTK is an excellent example of workable, long term DIY punk on a sustainable level. I’m not here to sell you a bandwagon to jump on. (There is no bandwagon.) 2) Real bands are made up of human beings, not heroes. Heroes are for political manipulation, television dramas, and the history of civilization. TTK, however, are all extremely talented musicians. I’ve seen them so many times, that, often, I’ll just watch one of them the entire set and still not understand how the fuck they do what they do. 3) There’s something wicked about hearing a brand new song—”Oh, that sounds like TTK”—and then having the song surprise you, having the song show new depths. On one hand, you know what you’re getting. On the other hand, it’s a new revelation, an organic growth, a new light in the color spectrum. How often does that happen? And their songs have legs. The Citizen Abortion’s over ten years old now. It’s now on automatic recall for me, like The Big Lebowski. 4) Repeat this a couple of times: “Don’t take great local bands for granted. Don’t take great local bands for granted.” Unequivocally, TTK’s one of L.A.’s best punk rock bands. 5) The road to true democracy is paved by imperfect democracies existing in tyrannical times. TTK—partially via Recess also—operates like the life of the band depends on controlling its music, from recording, to distribution, to touring. They’re buying in (the initial dividends are always smaller) instead of selling out. Let’s talk about bands like this more instead of the all-too-regular, all-too-predictable next wave of bands that’re going to be seduced by “increased exposure” via corporate fucklords. 6) Although it’s been six years since the last full-length, Shanked!—don’t forget their split LP with Grabass, URTC, and Stoned At Heart—it was worth every second of waiting. Instant gratification doesn’t build lighthouses. Fambly 42 is a beacon of light for punk rock in 2012. It’s not going to be outshone by ten other records this year and it’s gonna help a bunch of people with tons of shit in their lives from crashing onto dark rocks. Mark it, dude. The power of DIY punk.

 –todd (Recess, recessrecords.com)