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Get Dead Record Bridge City Sessions

Get DeadGet Dead recently sat down to record for the Bridge City Sessions.  The band recorded versions of “Shook” from their recent full length, Honesty Lives Elsewhere was released last year on Fat Wreck Chords.

Watch the video below.

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PEARS Perform Bridge City Sessions

PearsPEARS recently sat down to perform two songs for the Bridge City Sessions. The songs include “Victim To Be” and “Snowflake.”  The band released Green Star last year via Fat Wreck Chords.  

Watch the session performances below.

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The Real McKenzies Announce New LP;

the-real-mckenziesLong running Celtic punk greats The Real McKenzies have announced details for their next full length.  The disc will be titled Two Devils Will Talk, is set for release on March 3, 2017 via Fat Wreck Chords (US) and Stomp Records (CAN).  The band comments:

“On the 25th Anniversary of The Real McKenzies, we remain true to our Scottish-Canadian Punk Rock ‘n’ Roll roots. We wrote an album about perseverance, determination, and staying true to our beliefs. The band has never hung up its hat even at the toughest of times and this album shows we are more relevant now than ever before.”

Pre-orders will launch in the near future.

The Bombpops Sign To Fat Wreck Chords

California female fronted melodic punks The Bombpops have signed on with Fat Wreck Chords.  The band plans to release a new LP entitled Fear Of Missing Out on February 10, 2017 via Fat Wreck Chords.  The band comments on the new material:

“It’s taken our whole band’s life to make this record, but we’re lucky we waited this long to do it… It was the right time. I’m a big fan of the shiny, polished-sounding record, and we got to make that for our first record. It’s so cliché and cheesy to say, but it’s more mature, especially the vocals. We learned how to sing. We learned how to have more movement in our melodies. We learned a lifelong lesson of how to be in a band and get along together and make things happen.”

Listen to the new song “CA In July” below.

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Tours: Night Birds / Drakulas (Mexico)

Night BirdsNight Birds has announced that they will be heading on a tour of Mexico and Texas alongside Drakulas. Vocalist Brian Gorsegner comments:

“Shoutout to a fella named Dan Brenkert who shot this footage of a bananas garage show we played in York, PA last month before our string of dates with the Descendents. We feel insanely fortunate to get to do stuff like open for our favorite bands in venues with a green room larger than my actual home, but shows like this one in York at Skid Row Garage will always be where we feel the most at home.”

Tour dates along with an announcement video are below.

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Video: Useless ID – Without A Choice

Useless IDIsraeli pop-punk act Useless ID has premiered a music video for the song “Without A Choice.” The track is lifted from their new album, State Is Burning, which dropped back in July via Fat Wreck Chords.

Watch the video below.

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Bad Cop Bad Cop Releases New Single

bad-copLA pop-punk act Bad Cop Bad Cop has premiered a new single.  The song is titled “Get Rad” and is a stand alone single, and first new material since their 2015 full length, Not Sorry, available now via Fat Wreck Chords.

Grab the song here.

Dead To Me Streams New EP

Dead To MeDead To Me is streaming their new EP in full.  The EP is titled I Wanna Die In Los Angeles and dropped last Friday via Fat Wreck Chords.

Listen to the full disc here courtesy Noisey.

Zach Quinn To Re-release Solo Album

Fat Wreck ChordsPEARS frontman Zach Quinn has announced that he will be re-releasing his solo album, One Week, through Fat Wreck Chords on November 11, 2016.

The album was released earlier this year on Joey Cape‘s One Week Records.

nofx-first-ditch-effort

NOFX

First Ditch Effort

Fat Wreck Chords
By

Rating: 5/5

 
 

 

 

Do NOFX need any introduction? after over thirty years, thirteen studio albums and countless EP’s, singles and splits, they have brought us another thirteen tracks on their latest album, First Ditch Effort. This is a deeply personal album, more so than any of their previous recordings, whilst NOFX have shifted lyrically they have retained the character and style that’s been the hallmark of their past releases. First Ditch Effort is an album that couldn’t have come from any other band, and that is meant is a compliment as NOFX have produced one of the best albums of their career with their latest release.

Six Years On Dope opens the album in fine NOFX style, ninety seconds of the kind of blistering opening we’ve all come to know and love, Happy Father’s Day brings a more staccato blast before we get into the first of the classic NOFX tunes on this album, the superb conspiracy theory number Sid and Nancy, and it’s not long before the next one arrives in Oxy-Moronic. Pretty much every track hits the mark, there’s a heartfelt tribute to the much missed Tony Sly on I’m So Sorry Tony before the album ends in epic style with Generation Z. First Ditch Effort carries all the elements of a great NOFX album, musically it spans everything from hardcore to pop punk, the subject matter is everything you’d hope for, there’s the irreverent humour, and the politics are of course present, and it must be pointed out not many bands manage to make succinct political points without once being po-faced about it.

You can hear the impact that the writing of Home Street Home, Fat Mike‘s punk musical, has had on First Ditch Effort, for me it’s added another dimension to their songwriting. Whilst much of the subject matter may be darker, this is an element that’s always been present at on their albums in the past, but not as much to the forefront as it is on this release. First Ditch Effort comes across as a more mature album, I know sometimes that a band maturing means that the fun has been sucked out of them, but this isn’t the case with First Ditch Effort. The humour is still present that always been inherent in their lyrics, but there’s a darker element to the writing, subjects such as self loathing, self identity and personal morality come to the fore, without the album ever once becoming mawkish, and that is an achievement all on it’s own.

If you’re a fan of NOFX the odds are that you’ve all already ordered this and you won’t have been disappointed, this is as good as almost every other NOFX album, for me it falls slightly short of my personal favourite, The War On Errorism, but if you’re a long term fan of NOFX, and I am unashamedly amongst that number since White Trash, Two Heebs And a Bean was released twenty something years ago, then you need this album, and you need it now. NOFX are now well into their fourth decade, but they are still showing that an album can be made without any compromise, barring something ridiculously good being released in the next few months this will in all probability be the best album that I hear this year.

First Ditch Effort can be ordered from Fat Wreck Chords here

NOFX Streams New Album In Full

NOFXNOFX is streaming their upcoming full length, First Ditch Effort, which will drop on October 7, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.

Give the full disc a spin here courtesy Consequence Of Sound.

Video: Bad Cop Bad Cop – Cheers

Bad Cop Bad CopLA pop-punk act Bad Cop Bad Cop has premiered a new music video.  The video features the song “Cheers” and is appears on their upcoming full length, Not Sorry, released back in 2015 via Fat Wreck Chords.

Watch the video below.

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Tours: Face To Face

Face To FaceFace To Face has announced that they will be heading on tour in support of this year’s Fat Wreck Chords release.  The album is titled Protection and and was released back in March.  The album was recorded at The Blasting Room and produced by Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore.

Tour dates are below.

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Get Dead

Get Dead

Honesty Lives Elsewhere

Fat Wreck Chords
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

The release of Bad News really framed San Francisco punk act Get Dead’s hybrid acoustic style as a natural addition to the Fat Wreck Chords family.  The classic Against Me! twang and Swingin’ Utters gruffness offered up a safe and exhilarating take on what fans have come to expect.  Branching out into the realm of plugged-in tunes was a gamble that paid off in spades, and couldn’t have been a more suitable next step.  Now moving into their fourth full length, Honesty Lives Elsewhere, Get Dead continues exploring the redefinition they embarked upon a couple short years earlier.

The band frames Honestly Lives Elsewhere as a plugged-in affair from the get go, opening the album on a particularly anthemic, chorus-driven note.  “Silence” is big and brash with plenty of high flying riffs and even an attitude-laden, razor tipped guitar solo during the final bridge.  Vocalist Sam King’s whiskey soaked vocals are a shoe in for this roughneck style, tarnishing the underlying melody in the best of ways as he weaves through chorus and verse with the aggressive rapid-fire assertion that, “after all the violence, you’ll finally meet the end.”  Drawing upon the track’s title, the band pauses strategically, emphasizing effect through the power of absence.  As if to reassure listeners of their roots, “Choke” flies open with the jangle of acoustic strings, bolstered by organ keys, sparingly interspersed plugged-in chords, and a steady rhythm that feels every bit as full bodied as it’s full-band neighbour.

The best of the bunch tend to blur the lines, challenging listeners with the question of whether they’re listening to an acoustic or plugged in track.  For instance, “Cliffs” straddles the line with the sort of expert twang that should excite old timers in the clear likeness to As The Eternal Cowboy-era Against Me!.  Meanwhile, the jovial approach and uppity tempo of “Copper To Gold” and “Keep Rowing, Stupid” are indebted to the undying spirit of Swingin’ Utters, while the pure acoustic-piano showpiece “Ordnance” draws upon the dimly lit, late dives fueling Lawrence Arms front man Chris McCaughan’s Sundowner.

Also worth nothing this time around, is that Honesty Lives Elsewhere’s content feels less “dire” than Bad News.  Whereas Bad News made light of some pretty dark personal topics, Honesty Lives Elsewhere takes a lighter approach, dealing with less self destruction, and more of sifting through the results of circumstance.  While on surface level a minor change, the lighter substance actually makes Honestly Lives Elsewhere more conducive than its predecessor to a casual and more frequent listen.

If Honesty Lives Here makes one thing clear, it’s that Get Dead has heart.  The band revisits the the classic stripped-down and built back up punk-rock performance of various underground icons from the past twenty years as if it were their own.  Once again, listeners won’t find tons of originality at hand (even with the band steadily expanding its breadth of sounds), but the execution and result satisfies without reserve.  Honesty Lives Here serves as a healthy reminder that you needn’t reinvent the wheel when the ride is already this smooth – and that’s the honest truth.

Tours: Mean Jeans / Melted

mean jeans for punk siteMean Jeans will be heading on tour this October with Melted in support of their latest LP, Tight New Dimension, released via Fat Wreck Chords back in April.

Tour dates are below.

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Chixdiggit! Stream Single-Song Album ‘2012’

Chixdiggit!Long running Canadian pop-punkers Chixdiggit! have premiered a stream of their upcoming LP, 2012, which is due out September 16, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.  

The album is comprised of a single, twenty-four minute track from which the album gets it’s name.  Stream the album below.

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Video: NOFX – Oxy Moronic

NOFXNOFX has teamed up with Funny Or Die for the premiere of a brand new music video.  The video features the song ”  The disc will be titled First Ditch Effort and will drop on October 7, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.

Watch the video below.

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Video: Useless ID – We Don’t Want The Airwaves

Useless IDIsraeli pop-punk act Useless ID has premiered a music video for the song “We Don’t Want The Airwaves.” The track is lifted from their new album, State Is Burning, which is due out July 1, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.

Watch the video below.

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NOFX Announces New Album; Streams New Song

NOFXNOFX has quietly announced details for their next full length.  The disc will be titled First Ditch Effort and will drop on October 7, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.

The first track from the record and cautionary tale of a self destructive habits, “Six Years On Dope,” can be heard below.

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Lagwagon Tour

Lagwagon / Useless ID / Versus The World

Club Academy, Manchester, UK

19th July 2016
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Lagwagon 2016Summer has made it’s belated arrival in Manchester as Lagwagon, Useless ID and Versus The World roll into town, it’s hitting boiling point in the city and everyone has spilled outside the pubs and bars that populate the area, regardless of this temptation we are headed into Club Academy. Thankfully the venue lies in the basement of the University, which at least offers some respite from the heat. The music being played prior to the first band seems to be an odd choice, we get a selection of 70s and 80s disco, but to hear a, slightly drunk, member of the early evening crowd hollering It’s Raining Men almost makes it tolerable… almost. 

Versus The World 2016Versus The World, the only band on tonight’s bill who aren’t signed to Fat Wreck Chords, open tonight’s proceedings, sadly they open to a sparse crowd. Versus The World, whose line up includes members of Lagwagon, The Ataris and Antifreeze, play their set regardless and they start to bring in a few stragglers. The Californian five piece play their hard edged variety of pop punk to those who have forsaken the early evening sunshine. Versus The World play an energetic set that is a fine opening to tonight’s show, whilst their sound may not be original concept it is delivered with an admirable level of commitment and enthusiasm.

Useless ID July 2016Prior to Useless ID taking the stage the random selection of music continues, for some reason we get treated to Lynard Skynard‘s Freebird before Useless ID take the stage. Useless ID are touring in support of their impressive, and in my opinion their best album to date, State Is Burning. The Israeli quartet wake up the venue with their intense brand of melodic hardcore, they play a set that, whilst mainly culled from their latest release, is interspersed with a selection of songs from their past glories. Apparently Manchester is as “hot as Haifa” tonight, despite this Useless ID play a energetic set in the now oppressive heat.

The harmonies that inhabit their material areUseless ID July 2016 present live, and everything about this band just screams commitment, impressively they sound even better live, and believe me I loved State Is Burning. Useless ID leave the stage and you can see the sweat dripping from the microphone which underlines just how much they’ve put into tonight’s short set. The only issue I have with Useless ID tonight is that their set just isn’t long enough, a band of this calibre deserve more than half an hour, and their set is over in an impressive, but all too short instant. On the basis of tonight I would recommend catching Useless ID live if you get the chance.

Lagwagon 2016The crowd has swelled during Useless ID‘s set, whilst by no means sold out the Club Academy now has a healthy and enthusiastic crowd that are eagerly awaiting the arrival of Lagwagon. The Bonanza theme tune rings out from the PA and this signals that their arrival is imminent, tonight they are playing their classic Hoss album in full. A small but enthusiastic mosh pit immediately forms, and more impressively remains in place throughout the set. Even the Californian’s are struggling with tonight’s unrelenting heat, Joey Cape informs us that this is the hottest stage that Lagwagon have ever encountered in the UK.

WhilstLagwagon July 2016 the crowd tonight is smaller than Lagwagon are used to playing to, I doubt they’ll encounter a more dedicated crowd on this tour, the mosh pit expands throughout the set until it occupies most of  the floor, with sweaty die hard fans throwing themselves around with admirable abandon. Once Hoss has been played in full we get a crowd pleasing encore or two including two of my favourite Lagwagon songs, May 16, and Falling Apart. What really comes across during Lagwagon‘s set is that they clearly love what they’re doing, this is just as well as they have now been around for more than a quarter of a century.

Lagwagon 2016On the hottest day of the year in Manchester, in a venue that resembles a building site, where the main bar was shut and despite the truly awful selection of songs inbetween the bands, a respectable crowd still attended on what was a very close, sweaty and humid night. For those who opted for an evening outside the pub and a few cold beers instead of attending tonight’s show, I understand your reasoning, but you made the wrong choice. There’s nowhere I would have rather been in Manchester tonight, although I will admit that some air conditioning would have been a welcome addition.

Lagwagon 2016You can visit the Versus The World bandcamp here and their facebook page here

You can visit Useless ID‘s website here and order the State Is Burning LP here

You can visit Lagwagon‘s website here and order the Hang LP here

You can visit Fat Wreck Chords here and  Kung Fu Records here

Photography is by Dean Unsworth, he will be launching his website soon, you can visit his Instagram account here

You can read thepunksite.com‘s reviews of  Versus The World‘s Homesick/Roadsick LP here, Useless ID‘s State Is Burning LP here and Lagwagon‘s Hang LP  here

Toy Guitar Details New EP

Toy guitarSan Francisco punk act ToyGuitar has has announced plans for a new EP on Fat Wreck Chords.  The EP will be titled Like A Ghost and is set to drop on September 2, 2016.  The band released their twelve-song full-length, In This Mess, back in 2015.  

Full details can be found here.

Tours: Get Dead (Europe)

Get DeadGet Dead has announced that they will be embarking on a tour of the UK and Europe for the bulk of October.  The band will be supporting their upcoming full length, Honesty Lives Elsewhere which is set to drop on Fat Wreck Chords on July 29, 2016.

Tour dates are below.

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Useless ID

Useless ID

State Is Burning

Fat Wreck Chords
By

Rating: 4.5/5

 
 

 

 

I’ve made no secret and offered no apologies for my lukewarm enthusiasm towards Israeli punk mainstays Useless ID.  Their efforts have always struck me more as a love letter to the punk bands of the early 90’s – Bad Religion, The Descendents, No Use For A Name, NOFX – than an original spark.  More like mechanical re-creations of Tony Sly’s legacy than original works standing the test of time.  But in their twentieth year as a unit, and with the release of their eighth full length, State Is Burning, the band is forcing me to change my tune.

State Is Burning is Useless ID’s most passionate and genuine output – ever.  The twelve-track record is unquestionably the quartet’s masterwork and will be remembered as their lasting contribution to the punk scene.  In other words, I’m hooked and will be listening to State Is Burning for decades to come.

As for what made for such a powerful shift? Unrestrained passion – the type front man Yotam Ben-Horin explored previously in his recent acoustic adventure, but this time plugged in, unapologetic, and in your face.

State Is Burning aspires to the days of sub-thirty minute classics that trim the fat and concisely play to the bare essentials.  While Useless ID had a bad habit of letting repetition get the best of them, not a single chorus or verse on State Is Burning outstays its welcome.  For instance, opener “Land of Idiocracy” rattles through a barrage of jarring riffs and melodic chorus in a mere 59 seconds, but feels more complete and purposeful than past songs three or four times that length (and that’s not even the shortest track).  Accelerating at a breakneck pace with the rumbling bass and vicious snapping of drummer Gideon Berger, follow up “Stopwatch” sets up State Is Burning as a passionate political statement, moving from throaty roar to articulate mission statement characteristic of similarly aggressive Bad Religion tunes. 

The beauty of State Is Burning can be summed up in songs like “Creation” and “Genetic.”  “Creation” finds a catchy beat and assults it from every angle.  Melodic at its core, the band weaves through tempo shifts, belted choruses, full-on instrumental retreat and the type of “woa-oah” accompaniment that moves an audience to its feet. Likewise, “Genetic” barrels forth unapologetically, fueled by resentment and distrust, and culminating in an instrumental climax unlike anything else State Is Burning has to offer.  Others like “Without A Choice” thrive on angular riffs, a la The Descendents, and even classically Useless ID tracks like “Nightshift” thrive in the context of the album. “Detune” captures the magic of Lagwagon in a slow moving, dampened intro that viciously explodes into a masterful whirlwind of Joey Cape and Fat Mike.  And of course, be sure to check out the nifty little ode to the Ramones, “We Don’t Want The Airwaves,” (which made a recent appearance on an EP of the same name) for a little something on the lighter side.  That’s right, no filler here folks, just track after track of new surprises.

While the aforementioned influences have always served as a guiding light for Uesless ID, they’ve typically felt, impressionistic  – that is until now. State Is Burning frames Useless ID as the punk rock powerhouse they’ve always aspired to be.  With fire in their veins and fists raised to the sky, even naysayers can’t deny this passionate display from newly crowned punk rock royalty.  Consider me a convert.

Chixdiggit! Announce New Album With Featuring Longest Punk Song Ever

Chixdiggit!Calgary pop-punk veterans Chixdiggit! have announced plans for a very unique next album.  The album will be the band’s first full length since 2007.  The album, entitled 2012, promises a unique premise unlike anything the band has tackled prior.  According to the press release:

“2012 is no ordinary Chixdiggit! album; in fact, it’s comprised of the longest punk song ever recorded, clocking in at just under 25 minutes. Highlighting a full year of the band on tour, it’s as if you, the listener, are Chixdiggit’s roadie. You are right there with them, around the world and back again, except without all the heavy lifting.”

The single track disc is set to drop on September 16, 2016 via their home on Fat Wreck Chords.

Useless ID SIB

Useless ID

State Is Burning

Fat Wreck Chords
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Useless ID have now been with us for more than two decades, the quartet formed in Haifa, Israel and despite two decades of touring and recording they have managed to retain two of the original members, lead vocalist and bassist Yotam Ben-Horin and lead guitarist Ishay Berger, who alongside Gideon Berger, the younger and noisier brother of their lead guitarist, on drums and Guy Carmel, rhythm guitarmake up the current line up. State Is Burning is their eighth studio album and their second for Fat Wreck Chords, State Is Burning follows on their Fat Wreck debut, 2012’s Symptoms.

Useless ID SIB 2State is Burning opens with Land Of Idiocracy, this is a hell of a mission statement and this bleeds into Stopwatch, it becomes clear from the outset that this is Useless ID‘s hardest hitting album to date. There’s a greater sense of urgency and anger present than on their previous albums, whilst there is a pop punk element to their music this is now firmly on the back burner and a melodic hardcore approach has taken the lead, there are even tracks on here that burn with undiluted hardcore fury.

The title track is one of the stand out tracks, and very timely given the state of politics pretty much everywhere in the world, my other personal highlight is the single that preceded this release, We Don’t Want The Airwaves, a near perfect slice of punk with more than a knowing nod to The Ramones. Let’s make no bones about this, this is Useless ID‘s best album to date. This is an album that has something for anyone who loves their punk rock, this album encompasses all the strands of our beloved genre, from old school punk rock through to hardcore all the while maintaining their trademark sound and style, albeit a more heavyweight version than we’ve previously encountered. Useless ID are a band who are clearly fuelled by global politics and the stupidity and ineptitude of those who wield power, this is not only a great album, it is one that is completely relevant to the current state of the world, the state is indeed burning and now the turmoil has a soundtrack

State Is Burning can be ordered for download and on CD, vinyl and coloured vinyl from Fat Wreck Chords here

Useless ID Full Album Stream

Useless IDIsraeli pop-punk act Useless ID has premiered a full stream of their upcoming new album, State Is Burning, which is due out July 1, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.

Listen to the album here courtesy For The Love Of Punk.  Watch for our full review in the days ahead.

 

Mild In The Streets

Fat Wreck Chords

Mild In The Streets: Fat Music Unplugged

Fat Wreck Chords
By

Rating: 4.5/5

 
 

 

 

Who doesn’t love a Fat Wreck Chords compilation, they were a great way to hear new bands, and tracks from upcoming releases, for next to no money, as a bonus there were always a few exclusive tracks thrown into the mix. Along with Epitaph Records Punk-O-Rama series they were responsible for introducing a new generation of fans to some amazing bands. This time round things have changed as this compilation has been done with a different approach, Mild In The Streets: Fat Music Unplugged is, in case you hadn’t guessed, a collection of songs from bands and singers from the Fat Wreck Chords stable who have traded in their amplifiers and distortion pedals for acoustic guitars.

This sixteen track compilation is a lengthy affair and content is so varied that you can’t summarise the album, so i’m going to a whistle stop tour of Mild In The Streets: Fat Music Unplugged. Tony Sly, of No Use For A Name, opens the album with a soulful piano led version of Under The Garden and The Swingin’ Utters deliver an excellent foottapping country version of Fruitless Fortunes featuring slap bass and violin. Stacey Dee delivers a melancholy number, Everything Is Beautiful, this is one of the songs that is exclusive to this album and to anyone familiar with Bad Cop/Bad Cop this number will come as something of a surprise, this is juxtaposed against Sam Sadowski, of Closet Friends, who delivers some sore throated acoustic blues.

Going acoustic won’t come as a surprise from everyone on this compilation, for Old Man Markley it’s practically second nature, they deliver a mellower version of Guts ‘N Teeth. For others the acoustic approach doesn’t change anything apart from the volume, it clearly doesn’t matter if you take Anti-Flag’s electric guitars away as they remain as angry and political as ever, Israeli punks Useless ID retain their own sound, they keep the character of their hard edged pop punk intact and Matt Skiba delivers a sinister version of Alkaline Trio‘s Continental. Karine Denike bring a touch of fifties glamour to proceedings, this couldn’t be further away from the Dance Hall Crashers upbeat ska if it tried and Get Dead deliver some stripped down punk rock

We’re on the final leg of the tour now, Lagwagon‘s Joey Cape delivers a mellow acoustic number, American Steel bring some upbeat acoustica that features a mournful accordion break and Laura Jane Grace brings a great number that carries a restrained version of the fury that inhabits Against Me‘s output. The closing trilogy of songs continue to deliver, Russ Rankin brings us a heartrending tale of the loneliness of the road and the toll it takes on relationships, Uke-Hunt do a cover of Olivia Newton John‘s Xanadu, this is rather excellent, like an unplugged Me First And the Gimme Gimmes, and for it’s grand finale the album ends with an epic symphonic version of one of my favourite NOFX tunes, The Decline, personally I wish Fat Mike had done vocals over this rather than just an instrumental but it’s a faithful and bombastic end to an excellent compilation.

Compilations are usually a mixed bag but there is little to dislike on here, the versions are all original and unique takes on songs we have come to know and love, the original tracks don’t feel like they were ideas that were rescued from the wastepaper bin. This, as with every other Fat Wreck Chords compilation, is an essential purchase, if you’re a fan of any of the bands that appear on here I doubt that you’ll be disappointed with new versions or the original material. Mild In The Streets: Fat Music Unplugged brings something new to the table on almost every track, the album spans so many genres and styles that it never gets dull, buy this and mellow out for an hour or so.

Mild In The Streets: Fat Music Unplugged is available for download and on CD, Vinyl and Coloured vinyl here

12 Jacket (3mm Spine) [GDOB-30H3-007}

Direct Hit!

Wasted Mind

Fat Wreck Chords
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

How do you follow up an epic concept album chronicling the global curtain-call of armageddon?  While some may answer with the ever swelling push for bigger and more cataclysmic subject matter, Milwaukee’s own Direct Hit backpedals from the global, and gravitates to the immensely personal.  For their third full length, Wasted Mind, the energetic three-piece presents the hallucinogenic tale of a substance abusing protagonist that strays from recreation to a path of dependency.  Presented through the full-bodied pop-punk framework you’d expect from Direct Hit, the band leads listeners through a sonic and conceptual kaleidoscopic blend into twelve assertive tracks of altered reality.

Inspired from the thematic literary content of 1959’s Naked Lunch and 1971’s Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas, Direct Hit offers an evolving commentary of narcotic embrace, addiction, rehabilitation, and inevitably relapse.  In other words, venturing too far down the rabbit hole and losing your way back.  “Was it real or was it just the acid?” screams the band on “Was It The Acid” in choral harmony amidst a wave of Blink 182-esque “na, na na, na nas.”  The juxtaposition of isolation and embrace lingers through lines like “we flew to a land that was made of ice cream” and “injecting too much is a hazardous pastime, when the trip is your lifetime.”  Similarly zestful contrast bursts forth between songs like “Paid in Brains” and “Promised Land.”  The former jarringly throws a one two-punch of guttural belting and abrasively bursting alto-saxophone (think the angry ska of Chilled Monkey Brains), while the latter ushers in a church bell chiming marching anthem that rises on a melodic cloud of handclaps and “woo-oahs” (think Dillinger Four meets Morning Glory).  Direct Hit’s confidence continues to skyrocket since their early years, as they seem willing to direct their sound any which way without reserve.

In an interview, the band revealed that producer Mike Kennerty (All American Rejects) rejected at least half of the tracks Direct Hit demoed in the studio, but that bits and pieces of each rejection made their way into existing songs as periodic flashes.  While we can only speculate as to which moments are remnants of failed experiments, the band leaves listeners with an appetizing trail of breadcrumbs.  For instance, the carefully gliding piano exit of “Another Dimension,” the Beach Boys-esque surfer chorus of “Bleach Music,” and the electronica and synth harmonies popping from “Infinite Pills, Infinite Alcohol” all stand out as fleeting but unique junctures in Wasted Mind’s eclectic journey.  That the band synthesizes such competing vectors with vision and continuity ensures a vibrant and engaging journey.

Direct Hit’s Fat Wreck Chords debut serves as both an adventurous jump up in style as well as a vehicle for career advancement.  With the legendary label’s backing, the four-piece presents their most polished work to date, without sacrificing the gritty, turn-on-a-dime showmanship Direct Hit has become known for.  Their target clearly remains fans of Dead To Me, Dillinger Four, and Banner Pilot, with Direct Hit now comfortably standing shoulder to shoulder on such an all star roster.  There’s no telling where Direct Hit will head from here, but if their track record is any indication, it will surely mark another unique step forward.  

Useless ID – State Is Burning

Useless IDIsraeli pop-punk act Useless ID has premiered a new song.  The track is titled “Land Of Idiocy” and comes from their upcoming new album, State Is Burning, which is due out July 1, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords.

Listen to the song below.

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Tours: Lagwagon / Useless ID / Versus The World

lagwagonLagwagon will be touring Europe alongside Useless ID and Versus The World this July and August. Useless ID will be supporting their upcoming full-length, State is Burning, which is set to drop on July 1, 2016. 

Tour dates are below.

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Get Dead Detail New LP; Stream First Track

Get DeadGet Dead has announced plans for their next full-length.  The disc will be titled Honesty Lives Elsewhere and is set to drop on July 29, 2016 via Fat Wreck Chords. Vocalist Sam King build the hype:

“We are extremely proud of this new record. We got to work with a bunch of our friends again as well as some new ones. Josh Garcia once again gave up his sleep and sanity to orchestrate the chaos. Fat Mike returned to help produce it and contribute to some late night psychotic behavior. We had Miles from toyGuitar play some instruments that we can’t pronounce and Joey from OMM come through and bless us with some world class piano playing. It’s a fast, fun record and we can’t wait to unleash it.

We will be kicking things off in Japan at the beginning of August. Then a greater West Coast tour in mid-August before we head out to the East Coast. From there it’ll be Spain, UK and a grip of European shows, ending back in Florida for The Fest! We will have a few naps, then it’s off to Australia!”

Coinciding with the announcement, the band has premiered the new song, “Silence,” which can be heard below.

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