The Mono Men “Kick Out the Jams” and Girl Trouble “You Got What It Takes” 1996. Gearhead Records. This split 7″ came with an issue of Gearhead Magazine, back in the 90′s when they still did that (other issues included splits by bands like Gas Huffer, Red Aunts and Man or Astroman?). The Mono Men’s cover of MC5′s “Kick Out the Jams” is punked up, less funked-up and a bit more scuzzy than the original. I also prefer it to Girl Trouble’s “You Got What It Takes,” a cover of Dinah Washington’s “Baby (You’ve Got What It Takes)” that doesn’t translate well to the Pacific Northwest garage punk style of Girl Trouble.
Death Valley Girls “Darkness Rains” 2018. Limited edition yellow with red splatter, Suicide Squeeze Records. We picked up what I believe is DVG’s third LP this past weekend at Romanus Records Fest in Indianapolis where they headlined the jam-packed (15 bands!) evening lineup. Hard driving, punkish garage rock with nods to the darkness of goth and touches of neo-psychedelia via organ and lead guitarist Larry Schemel (who on stage was kinda relegated to the background, allowing the Girls to shine up front, mostly with huge smiles on their faces during the entire set).
We were able to grab the set-list, excellently illustrated:
DVG played several tracks from Darkness Rains, many of them my favorite on the album. They led off with “Abre Camino,” an intensely dark and throbbing scorcher that is the first track on Side B. From Darkness Rains also is the high octane rocker “Street Justice,” the hypnotic “More Dead,” “Disaster (Is What We’re After)” which features Iggy Pop eating a hamburger while jamming out to the song’s beat in its video (spoiler: he clearly loves ketchup), and my top track, “Wear Black” upon which lead singer, guitarist and keyboardist Bonnie Bloomgarden pulls out some amazing psychedelic organ.
Amyl and the Sniffers “Amyl and the Sniffers” 2019, limited edition colored vinyl (it looks like a cracked egg). We picked up this copy of the Aussie punks debut LP last week at the Amyl and the Sniffers’ sold-out show at Cactus Club in Milwaukee – one of the best punk records and definitely the best punk show we’ve been to in a very, very long time. Loud, fast, heavy, ridiculously high energy, mosh pit, stage diving, people swinging from the rafters, beer and water spraying everywhere. Mass mayhem, pure bliss! Also great: each band member sports an epic mullet, singer Amy Taylor’s the best of the bunch: a mix of Cherie Currie blonde feathers and Chrissy Hynde rock-n-roll shag. We missed the first opening band, Rexxx, but caught the second, the local punk band law/less, who were also great: hardcore in the 80′s style and also led by a woman (whose name I don’t know – the band doesn’t have any media presence besides a Bandcamp page). During the law/less set, Amy from the Sniffers was out in the audience dancing along next to me. That white-ish bit on her head that looks like a crown is, in fact, her amazingly flipped mullet bangs.
Amyl and the Sniffers played a lot of tracks from their new LP – which hit #22 in Australia and #91 in the UK – at the show. I’m not sure of the entire set but I for sure remember my top tracks that include “Starfire 500,” “Gacked on Anger,” “Cup of Destiny,” “GFY” as well as possibly “Punisha” and “Shake Ya.” I loved every single moment of every song but I admit that a portion of my attention was focused on not getting crushed by the mosh pit: I had my elbows sharpened and at the ready for the entire Amyl show.
THE RAMONES Ramones. Incredibly rare 1976 Japanese first press 14-track debut vinyl LP on the dark blue & silver Philips label manufactured by Nippon Phonogram, housed in a deluxe picture sleeve complete with the Japanese/lyric insert &unique pink ‘We Are Punk Generation’ obi-strip.
Cherry Bombs Of Icon & Influence! After snatching a record deal due to the brute strength of a single rehearsal, The Runaways proceeded to change the face (and gender) of rock and roll with the release of their 1976 debut. Mere months after their initial assault, The Runaways crank up the intensity on their dominant second album, painting stark pictures of teenage rebellion across a stunning set of originals. • First ever authorized US reissue on LP! • LP cut at Cohearent Audio by Kevin Gray and pressed at RTI for optimum sound!
This month’s shipment from Japan is due at UK office very soon.
There are sure to be some fantastic rare records inside, sourced by our Japanese buyer.
Once here, we will post our usual sneeky preview of some highlights.
The Heartbreakers “Chinese Rocks/Born to Lose” 1977. 12″ single, UK release. Today, July 15th, is Heartbreakers (and New York Dolls) singer, guitarist, songwriter Johnny Thunders’ birthday (b. John Genzale 1952, d. 1991). Last year we bought this original photo of Thunders by Milwaukee photographer Stanley Ryan Jones at his “The God-Almighty Stanley Ryan Jones $ell$ Out” retrospective.
Jones was one of the few photographers documenting the punk and new wave scene in Milwaukee in the 70′s and 80′s. Sadly most of his work was destroyed in a fire. When we got the photograph of Johnny Thunders signed, we asked Jones to tell us a bit about the picture. It was a show at The Starship (I think, or it was The Palms) and clearly Thunders was stoned out of his mind, about to smoke his cigarette wrong-way-around. Thunders was also not happy about getting his picture taken and was a real asshole about it. What I love about this photo is that his expression – dark circles under eyes and cheeks – clearly tells you everything about Thunders’ mindset (or lack thereof) and health but also you can feel and even smell the “artist lounge” at the club: the gross 70′s plaid couch that reeks of stale smoke through the glossy paper.
“Chinese Rocks” and “Born to Lose” are two of my favorite Heartbreakers songs. Both tracks appeared on their only LP L.A.M.F. “Bornto Lose” is by Thunders but “Chinese Rocks” was written by Richard Hell and the Ramones’ Dee Dee Ramone (though there is some dispute about Hell’s contribution to the track; Dee Dee probably is responsible for most, if not all, of the song).
Genetic Control – First Impressions (Ltd. 500 Numbered Copies) Get It On Vinyl
Coffee, Smoke, Hardcore Prior to this vinyl release, Genetic Control’s recorded output was limited to a 7″ and a CD compilation of previously unreleased tracks. GREAT slab! If an audiophile-quality pressing of a hardcore record exists, this would be it.
First ever official reissue of the exceedingly rare and hard-to-find First Impressions EP by Montreal punk band Genetic Control released in 1984. This expanded 35th anniversary edition contains 9 previously unreleased tracks from the band’s archives for a total of 14 fast and snotty 80s hardcore tunes !
SKIDS Peaceful Times. 2019 UK limited edition 10-track LP pressed on White Vinyl. Following the success of 2018’s album Burning Cities, which was the band’s first new material since 1981, and fired up by the fan response to songs both new and old on the band’s 40th Anniversary Tour, the band has been inspired to reinterpret songs from their catalogue in this new way, their first ever acoustic album. The vinyl is BRAND NEW & unplayed in the picture sleeve which remains sealed within its custom-stickered shrinkwrap.