CJ MILLER

SPLIT DISTRICT: Invitation to Exile: LP

Here’s a rare non sequitur: punk rock outta Sheboygan, Wis. Oddly enough, there’s a lot to live up to in Sheboygan, what with the large-looming shadows of The Leg Hounds and The Jetty Boys, two fantastic bands from the ’00s and ’10s, respectively. Split District veer away from the punk rock’n’roll/power pop of their local […]

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STAR PARTY: Meadow Flower: LP

Pretty good indie punk pop that reminds me of La Sera, Sea Pony, and somewhat early My Bloody Valentine (if only for the layer of feedback that hangs over the songs), along with what was happening in the early ’90s. Ian from Combat Knife, and Vexx is the songwriter behind this duo, so it’s interesting […]

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STICK FARM: Reharvest: LP

Victoria BC crossover hardcore band Stick Farm gets the Supreme Echo treatment this time around. This band existed just prior to my arriving in this fair city nearly three decades ago, so while I knew the name, I wasn’t familiar with the tunes. While I use the term “crossover” here, Stick Farm is not a […]

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STRANGE COLOURS: Future’s Almost Over: LP

The sound here has “psychedelic garage rock” embossed into its DNA, but it’s recorded and delivered in such a manner that’s neither doused in nostalgia-dust nor shackled by the “budget rock” dead end. Songs are good and meaty, yet still catchy as hell, and should appeal to both the garage rock purist and the less […]

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SUBURBAN RESISTANCE: SRII: LP

Anthemic, poppy punk from former members of The Faction and UV Rays. Songs keep things mostly in the mid-tempo range, the vocals are appropriately snotty, and their overall sound I reckon would’ve made a splash on the Warped Tour when that was a thing. –Jimmy Alvarado (IM, imrecordsstore.com)

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SWANSEA SOUND: Live at the Rum Puncheon: LP

Swansea Sound are smart, sardonic, silly, politically pointed (against the fascists and other weirdos), and utterly charming, and make lush, effortless punk pop you could listen to for days on end. Not surprising, given the roster of musicians involved, which includes members of The Pooh Sticks, Talulah Gosh, and Heavenly. I want to quote the […]

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SWEAT: Gotta Give It Up: LP

Hardcore with a vein of hard rock pulsing deep ‘n’ strong at its heart. Interesting that the “hardcore” is housed primarily in the delivery and the vocals—a bit more singing rather than yelling and the majority of this’d be a whole different experience. –Jimmy Alvarado (Pirates Press, piratespressrecords.com)

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TAULARD: Dans La Plaine: LP

Quick French post-punk with sing-song melodies and keys but no guitar. The songs all skip along nicely, but their lack of dynamics is underlined by the long keyboard notes, which turn the whole thing into a hard-to-grasp blur. –Chris Terry (Static Bloom, staticbloomsrecords.com)

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TEINI-PÄÄ: Maailma Kyllä Odottaa: LP

In past reviews I have gushed about Helsinki’s Teini-Pää and I was a little sad to know that due to the crazy heights that international shipping rates are reaching, I probably wouldn’t be getting a copy of their new LP any time soon. Well color me surprised when the band reached out to me wanting […]

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TELESATAN / DISPO: Split: LP

Dispo, at times, sounds like a more urgent, chaotic Death Wish Kids, certainly no easy feat if you’re familiar with that band’s sneering, crazed brand of streetpunk. At other times it’s lurching, bass-heavy, blown-out art punk. Always high velocity, like everything’s teetering on the edge of falling apart. Telesatan, meanwhile, has a number of songs […]

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THOU / HEAVY MANTLE: Split: 7”

This is the fourth record in the Tor Johnson Records 20th Anniversary subscription series. Of all the bands announced for the series, Thou and Heavy Mantle were two of the bands I was most excited to hear, and it’s great having them both on the same record. It completely took me by surprise to hear […]

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TIM HOLEHOUSE: Very: LP

Since 2011, Tim has been releasing albums in his “A-Z Series.” Very is the release of the letter “V,” a “best of” collection spanning a track apiece from every release in the series thus far. It ranges from deep, gruff, acoustic Tom Waits-style ballads, to distorted punk jams, to classic porch blues. It’s a single […]

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