Monday, August 10, 2009

Beat Motel Issue #4 Reviews

Buy Beat Motel at

4 Minute Warning # 8
£1.60 for about 1cm thick of copied pages
Zinester Mitch has cast into the world one of the thickest and most anarchic zines I’ve ever had the pleasure to read! I’ve put the page count at 1cm as the pages of this zine are strewn all round my house, they follow no particular order, not helped by the fact I dropped them when I took them out of the envelope! My only (shite) criticism of this zine is that it’s only bound by one staple in the top. But that’s like being given the Taj Mahal and complaining it’s a ‘bit drafty and big’. Bands covered include Conflict, Sick 56, Disorder, Outl4w, Higgins++, M.D.M, The Casualties and a crap load more! One of my favourite bits is the photos from Andy Higgins (Beat Motel writer and general superstar) birthday party. I’m hoping the next issue isn’t out before I get a chance to finish this one or I’ll have a backlog!

Altern-TV #3
£1/ trade for 40 copied A5 pages
I’d been reading this zine for ages before I figured out that the author Anna was actually a man, I’m not sure if that’s the point or not. This lovingly put together zine is crammed to the gills with small drawings, clippings and bloody tons more. The text is all about sexual freedom, playing with yerself and vegan recipes! There is so much in this zine it’s sometimes a bit tricky to tell what’s going on. There’s tons on offer here and if you fancy reading something totally different then this is a safe bet.
Westmead, Green Street, Little Hadam, nr Ware, Herts, SG11 2EE

Anarchoi #14
£? For 28 A4 printed pages
As much as I enjoy reading anarchy/ crust zines I seem to be getting loads of them at the moment so when this plopped through the door I wasn’t all that keen. I must say I was totally fucking wrong! This is a great zine full of humour, interesting interviews (i.e., even although I’ve never heard of the bands the interviews are still fascinating) as well as a great article on the odd stuff happening with American Oi at the moment. I read this zine whilst sitting in a tent in the arse end of Somerset supping cider, this isn’t a total crust zine but that environment seemed to suit it! The cover image is awesome too! Bands include Self Abuse, sad Society, Combat Shock and Filth Pact,
3 Hazel Grove, Kilwinning, Ayrshire, KA13 7JH

Anarchoi #15
£? For 32 A4 printed pages
Another cut n paste corker from Mr Gemmell. There’s an excellent interview with Drongos For Europe (they are always interesting), tons of non-alphabetised reviews and a nice anarchy and riot cops centrefold poster that would cheer up the dreariest of rooms. It’s worth getting a copy of this issue just for the hilarious interview with Arson to Ashes, the intro mentions their incendiary live performances then the photo of the band below shows them standing round on stage like old folk trying to figure out who and where they are! Great stuff.
3 Hazel Grove, Kilwinning, Ayrshire, KA13 7JH

The Assassin and the Whiner #16
$2 for 56 A6 printed pages
The zines I have been sent for this issue have been so varied! The basis of ‘asswhiner’ is that the author Carrie keeps a comic diary. Each day she draws something to express herself. And she’s not a very happy lass, most of this issue is taken up by Carrie battling the desire to get loaded, on a selfish note I read it first thing in the morning and it didn’t exactly inspire me to have a great day. But I imagine if you’re going through a similar anxiety thing then this zine could be quite cathartic. It’s worth buying this zine for Carrie’s comic style, it’s like Tin Tin! A smart wee zine, and I’d like to see some older copies to see if Carrie was always this way.
PO BOX 49403, Los Angeles, CA 90049, USA

Black Velvet #45
£2 for 40 A4 printed pages
Proper posh looking metalesque zine written with tons of personality. Teeters somewhere between the more commercial side of punk and odd metal fellas with gaffa tape on their norks. This issue features Sugarcult, My Chemical Romance, Manic Street Preachers, Bon Jovi (?), The Explosion, tons more and a report on download.
336 Birchfield Road, Webheath , Redditch
Worcs, B97 4NG

Black Velvet #46
£2 for 40 A4 printed pages
Shari is certainly the foxiest zine editor I’ve ever seen, and I thought long and hard about whether to put that at the start of the review in case it cheapened her zine. But the truth of the matter is that this zine is so bloody well put together I don’t think anything I say could harm it. Shari has gone the extra mile this issue and there are even a bunch of colour glossy pages! Feature bands this time round include Funeral For a Friend, Teenage Casket Company (rah!), Bloodhound Gang and All-American Rejects. As you can tell by that line-up Black Velvet is a lot more mainstream than most zines, and very readable too!
336 Birchfield Road, Webheath, Redditch, Worcs, B97 4NG

Blackpool Rox II #8
£1 for 20 A4 copied pages
Holy crap this is a bargain for a round pound! Not only do you get a smart scene zine based on Blackpool you also get a free copy of ‘The Ugly Truth About Blackpool’ (reviewed elsewhere in this zine). As with the cd you get this zine sets the standard on any scene publication, there’s even a list of all the bands in Blackpool and their contacts in there! Unlike other scene zines this doesn’t just cover punk, check it out!
po Box 1025, Blackpool, FY3 0FA

Born Caught #0
£0 for 36 A5 copied pages
Largely political/ crust zine with some great articles on stuff like the history of barbed wire and the shocking labour uses of Wilko. I enjoyed this zine, I just felt a bit brow beaten by it. Nice to see some South American bands featured too.
PO BOX 53, Leeds,

Bubblegum Slut #21
£1 for 68 A5 printed pages
This glamtastic zine just gets better and better looking! This issue has a garish colour cover, and the now traditional furry heart on the cover, it must take bloody ages to cut all them out! Bands covered with style in this issue include Brides of Destruction, The Answer, Wednesday 13, The Glitterati and Queen Adreena (who seem to be everywhere these days). There are tons and tons more, I really can’t do the amount of coverage Zinester Alison B manages justice in this review! The opening editors bit is dead interesting too, made me think about the lame questions I ask bands!
Alison B, 27 Stores Lane, Tiptree,, CO7 0LH

Cascade #2
FREE (I think) for 3 A4 copied pages
I sent off a copy of Beat Motel to this zine as a trade after catching a flyer for it with another zine. The flyer gave the impression there was an element of toilet humour to Cascade, with the snappy tag line ‘For girls who love to wet their knickers and boys to love to imagine it’. Bearing in mind here at Beat Motel we always up for a toilet related chuckle it seemed a dead cert we’ve like this zine. Well it turns out head Zinester Caroline REALLY likes to pee herself, and not just the occasional accidental trickle while giggling either. There are accounts of Caz’s various urination/ masturbation exploits, tons of poems waxing lyrical about the sexual pleasure of letting one go. Not our cuppa but this goes to show why zines need to exist, it’s not like the Independent on Sunday is gonna cater to this crowd! One of the great things about zines is the windows into other worlds they provide, this is a perfect example! As I see it getting this zine is going to go one of two ways for you, you’ll either be amazed at just how much washing power Caz must get through, or you’ll be greatly relieved that you’re not the only person out there into unleashing a golden torrent and diddlin’ yer nubbin! Oh, one last thing, try not to go to the cinema if Caz has just been in there!
54 The Avenue,Wivenhoe,Colchester,Essex

Chumpire #182
$0 For 12 Cheque Size copied pages
Bit of an odd one this, it’s like a wee punky chequebook! Chumpire is a scene report for Annville PA, with grainy photos and a whole ton of text. I wish someone would do something like this for my town, it makes everything sound cool!
GK,PO BOX 27,Annville,PA 17003-0027,USA

Chumpire #183
$0 For 14 purple A6 copied pages
I preferred this issue to the last, there’s still the scene reports and (in this case) great action photos but there’s also a nice wee bit about bumping uglies and a load of zine reviews. It’s a lame thing to say, but I can’t for the life of me figure out if this Zinester is male or female! Doesn’t matter, I’m starting to really like Chumpire. They like you to send them stamps in exchange for zines, but if like me you’re in the UK that presents a bit of a challenge. I’d say write them a nice letter and tell them a bit about yourself and they’ll be more than happy with that as a trade.
GK,PO BOX 27,Annville,PA 17003-0027,USA

The Contacts Penpals Newsletter 1992 - 1997
A Retrospective 2001 - 2005
£? For 12 A4 copied pages
This comes from the same author as Altern-TV and is even more crammed. I think it’s basically a free newsletter full of tons of contacts and bloody loads of little bits and bobs that you are encouraged to plagiarise. When Anna sent me this it came with a huge letter explaining that publishing this newsletter got her in a ton of trouble with the police on account of it being obscene. Strange that, surely the Daily Mail is far more obscene?
It’s worth sending for this zine just for the bewildering amount of stuff Anna Key will send you with it! There’s everything from flyers for a multitude of interesting looking zines to fact sheet on matters like what to do when you get arrested! Good stuff.
Westmead, Green Street, Little Hadam, nr Ware, Herts, SG11 2EE

The Cosmic Toast #1
£1.50 for 40 A5 printed pages
Fantastically fucked up zine from the depths of Somerset. This is nearer to a graphic novel than a music zine, well, to tell the truth it’s more of a messed up mental meandering than anything else. The illustrations in Cosmic Toast are simple breathtaking. Most of the stories relate to throwing up/ drinking/ drugging and almost all of them have a drawing of someone pinching a loaf. Fantastic stuff and a bargain for £1.50. Already looking forward to issue #2!
12 manor road, Yeovil, BA20 1UG

Cracks In The Wall #5
£? For 50 A5 printed pages
Narrated by a caricature of the Zinester; interspersed with illustrations and images of popular culture - this is an interpretation of one persons' worldview that many folk would relate to. Intelligent in his commentary, both engaging and witty, whilst maintaining for the most part, impartiality. Not conventional of the many zines I have idly flicked through with the band themes, celebrated stupidity, colourful
language and often aggressive ranting. If any of you fine people have ever had the aspirations to commit your thoughts to paper (myself included), then CITW is an inspiration indeed.
Emma Culture
Andy,CITW 2,Tinkham Glenn,Wilbraham,MA 010095,USA

Debunk #2
£1 for 36 A5 footprinted pages
Wahoo, this still feels like Beat Motel’s sister zine, editor Mafro has a very similar sense of humour to us. So if you like Beat Motel you should read Debunk! The layouts are a massive improvement on the first issue. Was sorry to read in the intro that Mafro has suffered the curse of the Zinester, whereby as soon as you get involved in making a zine your computer will cease to operate.! Features include recipies, discussions, reviews, columns and tons more. The interview with Neck in this issue is excellent, I’m not a fan of the band but this interview is fascinating! This issue also contains the biggest column I have ever written, about, er, Betterware!
3 Pippin Close, Sittingbourne, Kent, ME10 2QJ

Devolution #6
£1.50 for 40 A4 printed pages
More than just a glossy Goth/ Punk/ Metal zine, Devlolution also has art & fashion pages! These metal lot really pour a crap load of effort into their zines, impressive. Issue #6 features Slunt, Theatres Des Vampires, My Ruin & that lad with Gaffa taped nips that was in Black Velvet #45
137A Brasenose Rd, Didcot
Oxon, OX11 7BP

Do the Dog Skazine
£NOWT for 8 A5 printed pages
This is more of a wee news update than a normal zine, great stuff if you are into your ska. I’m not though, so if you want this get in touch as I’m possibly not doing it justice.

Earth Zine, Running Zine #3
50p for 18 A5 printed pages
Don’t let the brevity of this zine give you the wrong impression, more effort goes into Earth Zine, Running Zine that a bunch of other crap I read. It’s a series of cartoons drawn by the author explaining what he’s been up to, which is pretty interesting. The man behind is all Joe is a really interesting bloke and I really like the angle this zine is coming from, to coin an old cliché I’d say it was ‘thoroughly enjoyable’.
ABC, PO BOX 74, Brighton, BN1 4ZQ

Earth Zine, Running Zine #4
50p for 14 A5 printed pages
This zine is now firmly planted in my heart as a favourite, shame it’s not longer but with all effort Joe puts in then it’s understandable. Adventures tackled in cartoon strip form in this issue include the last legal hunt, a special wasp, and of course more Winona Ryder fantasies. I don’t know if Earth Zine, Running zine is unique, I kinda hope it isn’t as I’d love to read more zines like this.
ABC, PO BOX 74, Brighton, BN1 4ZQ

Electricity #1/ Summer
$3 for 28 A5 copied pages
I’m going to take the risk of calling this a ‘teen zine’. Where in most cases that may describe a publication full of drivel, in this case it couldn’t be further from the truth. Electricity is lovingly put together and Zinester Chloé expresses some very mature attitudes to life. The main theme of this first issue seems to be a strong desire Chloé has to be a catalyst for people to open their eyes, get out and do something different for a change. A great read.
Just one issue though, even although (as with the rest of the western world) I’ve been raised in an environment saturated by American TV, I have no idea whatsoever what ‘Sophomore’ means!
PO BOX 50774, PHX, AZ 85076, USA

Electricity #2
$3 for 32 A5 copied pages
Wahoo, sometimes you’re waiting for a certain zine to arrive them two come at once! Chloé has really stepped things up a gear with issue 2. This zine is hand bound in sugar paper with a heart cut out of the front. It is held together using black wool and the paper cut out of the front to form the heart is used to make a wee tag. Like some American bands some American personal zines can really put us brits to shame. The sheer level of effort put in is really impressive. This issue is a little bit more soppy than the first, maybe Chloé is in love? I don’t know how many of these are printed, I’d say not many considering the effort put in, so if I were you I’d grab one before they are all gone! Roll on issue 3!
PO BOX 50774, PHX, AZ 85076, USA

Fast ‘n’ Loud
£1 for 34 A4 printed pages
Mostly interview orientated Fast ‘n’ Loud shouts proudly for the trad-punk cause. Great interviews in this ish include The Softies, Pete Wright and a whacking huge interview with Sonic Junkyard/ Anarchoi. I love the reviews in this zine, especially the suggestion that all EMO should be sent to Trev at Negative Reaction, tee hee! I also loved the articles nicked from other magazines, especially the one with Killing Joke frontman Jaz Coleman and his mam!
88 Overbrook Road, Hardwicke, GL2 4RZ

Funky as Fudge #1
50p for 24 A5 copied pages
Yet another newbie in what’s becoming a very healthy zine scene here in East Anglia. Funky and Fudge is brief, cheery and irreverent. I especially liked the ‘intermission’ in the middle of the zine! Like a lot of first time Zinesters editor Gareth is too apologetic about his own zine, but that will pass in time and he’ll become as jaded and bitter as us old hacks! Stuff covered includes iForward Russia!, Huw Stephens and Chris TT.
57 Chestnut Ave, Oulton Broad, Suffolk, NR32 3JB

Gadgie #20
£1 for 36 A5 footprinted pages
Sadly this may be one of the last Gadgie’s for a while, Marv is getting involved in a new zine from the Boston area which we very much look forward to seeing. This is another excellent issue, subjects covered in Marv’s unique style include maniac CDT teachers, street games that we played when we were kids and a great retrospective from an insiders view of URKO. Also contained are the usual scene reports from Boston (lincs) and hardcore reviews. If I had to go on Desert Island Discs on radio 4 my collection of Gadgies would have to be something that came with me!
PO BOX 93, Boston, Lincolnshire, PE21 7YB

Issue #20
50p for 16 copied A4 pages
After a gap of crap knows how many years Issue is BACK, yeah I know I reviewed it in the last zine, so it’s been back a while but I just thought that gap was kinda important. I really look forward to reading this zine, it’s like a peek through the round window into another scene. But it’s appeal is pretty universal, it’s almost like reading a wee soap opera based on Basingstoke. Oh fuck it just buy it, this is a shit review and I probably shouldn’t write them when I’m this hungover.
Neil Duncan,25 Sarum Hill, Basingstoke, Hants, RG21 8SS

Issue #20
50p for 16 A4 copied pages
I’m felling a lot better now. This is a corking newsletter from what looks like a really fun scene. There’s a decent dose of humour in there and it’s always great to see a bunch of photos, it’s one thing reading about a scene, but it’s even better being able to see it in action!
Neil Duncan,25 Sarum Hill, Basingstoke, Hants, RG21 8SS

Johnny America #3
$4 for 40 very classy printed pages
I’m always really pleased to get sent zines that are put together with a bit more verve than your typical white paper and staples. Any zine printed at FootPrinters already passes as they use that nice off-white recycled paper. Johnny America blows every other zine on earth out of the water when it comes to presentation. The cover is thick card and parts of the design actually glow in the dark, now that’s just shitting cool! The pages are all printed on parchment paper rather than copied and the whole package is hand bound using silk like pink thread! Johnny America is a collection of many short stories, and when I saw short I mean short, some of them are barely 100 words! I found this pretty inspiring and wrote the fairly crappy short story ‘Round’ that is elsewhere in this issue of Beat Motel. The stories range from quaint and quirky to fairly dark and brooding. This zine is pure class, their covering letter even came on a piece of premium headed paper, headed with ‘Moon Rabbit Drinking Club Benevolence Society’. I liked this zine so much I’m going to see if I can track down issues #1 & #2. It’s zines like this that keep the genre exciting, this one is definitely going in my ‘keep and cherish’ pile.
PO BOX 44-2001,Lawrence,KS 66044,USA

Killer Question: Instant Classic #1
£1.50 For 12 A5 footprinted pages
I must admit, when I first looked at this zine it really interested me. It looked nice and simple, not over the top and glossy and when I read it was to feature largely about Penny Broadhurst, a poet and solo artist, I became really interested.
Sadly though, this was where the positives really ended for me. For starters you aren't given any background information about Penny until half way through the zine (and even then it doesn't tell you much). It's spliced with her poems, which while I enjoyed them, I felt they broke up the movement of the zine, it didn't flow together. Next up came the actual articles. I didn't mind Bob's rant about knowledge, but the rest really didn't seem to be about, well anything. This normally is a good thing, but some of these really didn't seem worthwhile to read. The one by 'Sophie' especially annoyed me - the "everyone should sneer at society" sentence really pissed me off. To me, the saving grace of this zine was Natalie B's article about women. I thought that was an excellent and thoughtful piece of writing.
I really wanted to like this zine, I really did and whilst I know this was the first issue, I felt there was too little in there and not enough background information about the creator etc. Maybe next time.
19 St,Catherine’s Drive, Leeds, LS13 2LD
Marc Newby

Killer Question: Instant Classic #1
£1.50 For 51 A5 footprinted pages
I did mean to send this to Marc Newby to review as he reviewed the first issue but I ended up picking it up to have a flick through. A few hours, train journeys, bowel movements later I finally put it back down again. This is a totally engrossing zine that consists almost entirely of people talking about identity. I was surprised to find I had written a column for this zine, but then again I’ve always had the memory of a dead knat. Buy it, it’s chuffin’ thoughtful and great!
19 St,Catherine’s Drive, Leeds, LS13 2LD

Last Hours #10
£1.50 for 114 A4 printed pages
I never saw a copy of the fore-runner of this zine (Rancid News) so I’m starting from a fresh perspective here. Last Hours is a little like what Fracture used to be, but just a little more irreverent. The Columns are of a really high standard and the articles are all very well written. It’s polished, a great read, but just a little serious. But the great thing is it will take you weeks to finish reading any issue of Last Hours, it brings whole new meaning to the phrase ‘value for money’. In addition to the band interviews (Sleater Kinney, The Dwarves, Propaganhi, Black Spot), there is also a fantastic interview with Marv Gadgie and Luke (water into beer). There’s tons of other stuff that you just don’t find in other zines, like comic reviews and recipes!
Po Box 382, 456-458 The Strand
London, WC2R 0DZ

Last Hours #10
£1.50 for 114 A4 printed pages
Last Hours is the thinking person’s zine, there’s less humour than a lot of other zines but this is balanced out by lots of emotional content. We’re not talking emo pap here (apart from the lad on the front cover) I’m talking about a massive collection of articles that strike you on an emotional intellectual level. Not to say either that it’s all miserable stuff, just stuff I think most people can relate to. As usual there’s a fair amount of activism which I find at the same time fascinating and infuriating, this is one zine that uncovers issues that make me really angry! I mean that in a good way, er, if you know what I mean. None of us are going to get anywhere in the world if we leave our heads buried in the sand and Last Hours is like a paper shovel. Last Hours is far from just politics and personal writing, among the plethora of bands covered include Against Me, Satanic Surfers, Fighting Shit, and bits on other music related stuff like Ladyfest and Active Distribution. This zine is a home-grown must have!
Po Box 382, 456-458 The Strand
London, WC2R 0DZ

Let’s Just Pretend #3
£1 for 60 A5 footprinted pages
I got in touch to trade for a copy of this zine after seeing some really good reviews for it here and there and I haven’t been disappointed. It’s a good meaty zine with tons of great interviews (Dwarves, Bouncing Souls, Pilger amongst others) as well as personal zine type articles, musings/ rants such as why Bristol is shite and an article I totally disagreed with about why pets are shite. The style graphical of this zine is great, it’s very laid back but so clear I’m not even going to mention the white spaces! Grab this zine and take your time over reading it, it’s worth it.
260 Coronation Road,Southville,BS3 1RS

Lipgloss #1
£1 for 40 A5 footprinted pages
Lipgloss has to be one of the most anticipated zines ever, editor Chris was one of the other staffers for Real Overdose and I’m sure I can remember him talking about Lipgloss as far back as three or four years ago! I’ve gotta say the wait has been worth it. This is much more a personal zine than a music zine and doesn’t fall into the trap that some personal zines do of making you feel like a total outsider. There are some really great articles written by such zine faves as Chris 12oh5. There’s tons to keep any reader interested in here, although the cartoons were a bit too keraaaaazeeeee for me, but I think if someone explained them to me I’d get them. The layouts are awesome, but that Chris always was an artistic bugger. I also especially liked the wee envelope stuck to the inside of the back cover containing a random photograph. You should read this zine, you really should.
260 Coronation Road,Southville,BS3 1RS

Maximum Rock n Roll #270
$4 for miles over 100 A4 printed pages
Another fine edition of one of my favourite magazines. One thing that stands MRR above most other zines I’ve seen is the photographs. I could spend hours reading the extensive scene reports in this zine, indeed I have to as they are so detailed! Weird thing with MRR, I always find all the adverts fascinating! One slight bitch I have is there are no page numbers!
POB 460760, San Francisco, CA 94146-0760, USA

Maximum Rock n Roll #272
$4 for 140 A4 printed pages
Some people spend their whole lives feeling unfulfilled, like there is something missing. Some get religion, some do charity work when all they really need is to sit on their arse with a can of beer and read Maximum Rock and Roll. This issue’s strongpoint is as always the excellent columns. There’s tons of variety and each one is a glimpse into another world. I was going to email them and point out a few errors in their review of Beat Motel (like saying we’re Straight Edge, whoa mumma!) but it turns out they have dedicated a whole page to letters received from other zinesters also complaining at inaccuracies, I especially loved the letter written by our mate Trev over at Negative Reaction. Their excuse for these errors? They got loaded when they reviewed all the zines, great stuff! Kinda nicely sums up this zine, it’s kinda pro, but kinda really not. Read it, you’ll love it. I’ll bung the address in here but it is fairly easy to get in the UK.
POB 460760, San Francisco, CA 94146-0760, USA

Mosh ‘N’ Go
£1 for 40 A4 footprinted pages
WARNING Mosh ‘n’ Go can damage domestic bliss. The photo on the opposite page was taken on Sunday 8th January 2006. I thought I had lost my copy of this zine but it turned up under a huge pile of other zines I’ve been sent. I was so pleased that I started reading it right away, in fact while I should have been helping Emma with decorating! The problem is that Mosh ‘n’ Go is a ‘DipperZine’, meaning that you can pick it up, turn to a page at random and immediately find something worth reading! This issue’s cover solves the age old issue of who would win in a fight between a shark and a bear. There are some really interesting articles in this zine, like the Anarchism and Vegetarian ones. Ross is a bit apologetic about some of the content in this issue, with no grounds whatsoever. There’s also a great wee tour diary type thing from Ross’s travels seeing the Drop Kick Murphys. This is fast becoming one of my favourite zines.
52 Neill Road, Sheffield

The Mute Collective #2
80p for 46 A6 copied pages
Oooh, the cover of this zine is all lumpy! You’ll have to buy it to see what I mean. Pretty neat and easy going wee zine featuring Once Over, Champion Edition and thoughts on stuff like Vandalism. I really like this zine, it shows some great originality, go on buy it.

The Mute Collective #3
80p for 38 A6 copied pages
This zine is like a gentle paper hug. It oozes personality and the many contributors keep it interesting. Articles include a rant about Kwik Fit, a guide to screen printing and some ramblings about Reading Festival. The film reviews are pretty smart too. I really love the layouts in this zine, most articles are proceeded by a sort of title page. You should buy this zine, otherwise I’ll be very disappointed in you.

Negative Reaction #3
£1 for 35 A4 printed pages
More offensive fun from Trev HAGL et all. If I was a teenage lad I’d be hiding this zine from me mam, instead I’m reading the jokes out to a slightly mystified girlfriend. Negative Reaction is very much a Oi/ Street Punk zine with a filthy sense of humour. Can’t say I agree with everything in here, but then any zine I agree with 100% tends to bore the arse off me. Bands include Runnin’ Riot and Dirty Love. Bloody interesting interview with one man anti-fucker campaign Tony Martin, NO not the teen blasting farmer, the other Tony Martin.
20 New Front Street, T/Lea, Stanley, Co.Duhram, DH9 9LY

Neus Subjex #65
$0 for 20 Cheque Size copied pages
Wow, this zine has even smaller text than Beat Motel! Mind you they don’t half cram a lot into these slim pages. Most of the zine is kinda scene reporty photoey goodness. I feel a real affinity with this zine for the simple reason we both have very similar attitudes.
PO BOX 18051, Fairfield, OH 45018, USA

Noisy! #1
50p for 28 A5 printed pages
This is another in a growing number of zines that are local to us. For an issue one it’s pretty stunning, I suspect editor Sophia has done a zine before! It spends most space talking about Essex bands and interviewing them, but there is tons more that should appeal to anyone not from Essex, like the guide to writing press sheets and an article on Internet radio. I’m looking forward to reading the next issue, which has just plopped through my front door!
Sophia,143 High Road,South Benfleet,Essex,SS7 5HY

Noisy! #1
50p for 30 A5 printed pages
Massive improvement on the first issue, Sophia has really got a strong direction and the layouts are starting to look really pro. This is a Essex Zine Scene and by the looks of it there’s tons going on in our neighbouring county! There is tons of news in here as well as some useful artless about stuff like band promotion on the internet.
Sophia,143 High Road,South Benfleet,Essex,SS7 5HY

Punk Rock Confidential #1
$4.00 for 82 A4 printed pages
This is a new zine from the mangled mind of Fat Mike, it’s kinda like a punk version of Hello Magazine. Now my first though was that all that glitzy shit ain’t very punk (no heroes etc) but the whole effort of very tongue in cheek. Actually that’s an understatement, this magazine is fucking hilarious! Gawp in wonder at Fat Mike’s family photo album, Anti-Flag wedding snaps and about a ton of photos taken by Tim Armstrong. There’s even a births, deaths and marriages section! I loved this zine, it would appear Fat Mike has the power to realise the projects that we only laugh about at the pub! I haven’t a clue where you can buy this zine but I got mine from Know Your Product distro, I suggest you do the same.

Punk Rock Confidential #2
$4.00 for 98 A4 printed pages
Fat Mike’s answer to Hello magazine, although I think he might have misheard the question! This is a real hoot, I’ve covered what this magazine is pretty well above so I’ll just give you a quick rundown of what this issue covers; My Chemical Romance getting booster shots, mudslides, band members with only one knacker, band van gallery. Buy it, it’s phototastic!

Riot 77 #9
€3 for 52 A4 printed pages
Really pro zine that does what it says on the cover. This offers some smart interviews with 77 era bands as well as some more modern names like Razorcake and Lars Frederiksen. Other bands featured include The Vandals, X, The Saints and a fascinating chat with late 50s/ 60s star Wanda Jackson! There’s tons of smart cd reviews, but sadly no zine reviews.
31 St Patricks Park, Clondakin, Dublin 22, Ireland

Riot On Your Own #20
£nowt for 30 A5 copied pages
The first and most amazing thing about this zine is that it’s free, the second most amazing thing might just be the foxy punk lass on the back covering being touched up by a teddy bear, by the looks of it at a gig! Riot On Your Own reports on the goings on of the Northern Ireland scene normally, but this issue also covers the Wasted Festival in a pretty unique way, This zine is packed full of attitude and we were amused to see in their review of Beat Motel that they think we are young! Tee hee! Send off for this zine NOW
5 Glen Road, Belfast, BT5 7JH

Riot On Your Own #21
£nowt for 32 A5 copied pages
More smart scene report type stuff from our cousins in NI. Billy Riot puts together a great collection of opinionated reviews (the best sort obviously) and interviews that are far from the norms. Shitloads of personality and always has a great photo spread in the centre pages. There’s also a bloody amazing long scene report/ history lesson. Billy still thinks I’m a kid too, which is nice!
5 Glen Road, Belfast, BT5 7JH

Satans Fish Tank #17
£1 for 72 A5 printed pages
More metal and rock stuff in glorious colour in this issue. This zine has some really smart ideas like referencing back to previous articles when they interview or review a band. The review system is smart too, they rate stuff like the longevity of a release. This issue has Soulfly, Chimaira, InMe, 3 Inches of Blood, Fear Factory, a massive feature on RoadRunner records and about a billion other things! A steal at only a quid!
17 Eyton Close, Winyates West, Redditch, Worcs, B98 0JY

Screamager #2
£1.50 for 88 A4 printed pages
This zine came to me in a very strange way. I was laying in my tent contemplating my navel at Reading festival and I heard someone called out the name ‘Azza’. Now there’s a fellow user on the forum called Azza, I knew he was at Reading festival, and I figured there can’t be that many people called Azza. So I yelled out, a voice came back asking who I was, obviously I replied that I was Andrew Culture. The voice called me a liar and informed me that I can’t be Andrew Culture. This confused me in my ‘relaxed state’ so I protested that I was in fact said Andrew. They told me the only way I could prove it was to show them a copy of Beat Motel, so I thrust one out of the tent. There was a triumphant shout outside my tent and this copy of Screamager came hurtling in through the tent zip! Turns out it wasn’t Azza from at all, but someone entirely different, who happened to be mates with the Screamager lot, who not only live near me but also managed by coincidence to pitch their tent behind mine!
Anyway, back to the review! This issue of Screamager is a huge improvement on the debut issue. The layouts have evolved and it’s new A4 format works really well. It still covers the mainstream side of punk. Features My Chemical Romance, Antimaniax, Sugarcult, Howards Alias and more. Well worth picking up. I also really like the way they reviewed Beat Motel #2 without ever having seen it (by their own admission!) Cheers lads!
Merchant Weavers House, High Street, Dedham, Essex, CO7 6DE

Six Ripped-up pictures from 1990
Written Winter 2005
£? For 56 A6 printed pages
And it really does have a ripped up photo stuck on the front, mine is an odd double exposure of a bike wheel and a lass with a bob cut having a chuckle. The actual zine is lovingly hand-made, and bound with gaffa tape. The tales inside are of the authors miss-spent youth and are written in a very matter of fact sorta way, almost like a confession. Kat grew up in Phoenix USA and it really is a million miles from the kind of environment we live in here in the UK. One stand out difference is that by about 6pm here in England every shop bar the big supermarkets and petrol stations shut down. There is nowhere to go at all between midnight and the morning, whereas in Phoenix there appears to be an entire subculture that exists only in these secret hours. I have a lot of affection for this zine as it captures one of the essences of what got me into zines in the first place, Kat writes as your friend and after reading this you really do feel that you know her pretty well. She doesn’t bare her soul like some zinesters do, and there’s nothing soppy about the writing style, it’s just kinda ‘warm’. That’s really the best way I can describe it, you’ll have to read it for yourself, and please do! For some reason I can’t put my finger on I was expecting this zine to have a harsh end, I was half expecting that Bridgette would die. Read it and see if you feel the same way. Kat also writes for MRR
225 SanJose Ave, San Francisco, CA 94110, USA

Slug and Lettuce
$postage for 16 A3 newsprint pages
I’ve been itching to get a copy of this for bloody ages. It was worth the wait too! The artwork covering this newspaperish zine is awesome, if you see the name Jeremy Clark mentioned anywhere check him out! Slug and Lettuce starts as a fairly chatty explanation of what’s going in their world before launching into some smart columns, pausing only for a wee cartoon thingy called Dog Dayz. The photos throughout this zine are some of the best I’ve seen. This is a zine lovers paradise, there are over 90 zine reviews! I was really chuffed with the number of zine reviews I’ve got in this issue of Beat Motel but this totally blows me out of the water! They are all proper long reviews rather than just a list of what is in each issue, I’m seriously impressed! If you want a smart slice of American Punk Like get this zine/ newspaper pronto!
P O BOX 26632, RICHMOND, VA 23261-6632,USA

Sweet Shop Syndicate #1
50p for 22 A5 printed pages
This is a zine that I clutch to my heart and feel the urge to tell strangers on the street about. There are no bands or interviews in this zine, it’s 100% personal stuff. There are great tales of travelling, Gadgie zine type reminiscing tales and a bizarre role play bit about Harold Bishop. Buy this zine please, it will make me very happy!

The Computers Are Turned Off For A Reason #1
50p for 20 A5 copied pages
This is a new zine from the Time Bomb stable, I’m not going to go into details regarding the connection as I’m a little confused myself! The layouts bear some similarity to Time Bomb as far as they are compilation of handwriting, copy and paste text and random backgrounds. The content is really friendly and smart, bands covered include Dead Sea Fucking Scrolls, Crash the Pose and Worker and Parasite. There’s a smart wee diary concerning work experience in the houses of Parliament too, interesting stuff. Something that really impressed me with this zine is that each cover is individually hand drawn, and there’s a ton of detail too! Must have taken bleedin’ ages, but it’s just another thing that makes this a classic zine. Be quick if you want to buy though, they have only printed 100 copies!
10 Nightingale Cresent,West Horsley,KT24 6PD

Time Bomb #8
£1 for 35 A5 printed pages
This is a zine that I always look forward to and then read cover to cover within at least 24 hours of it plopping through my door. In one way it’s like a Guildford version of Beat Motel, there are mentions of the zines home town but it’s very much about more than that. The columns are great, the interviews are great (Ten Second Break, Zatopeks, Blocko & Atom and his Package), some of the reviews are a little vague but if Beat Motel was half as eloquent as this lot I’d be a happy man. Two of the bands featured in this band have recently split up, good job we’re not superstitious hey! The print job on this zine has taken a notch up, it’s printed by Foot Printers who seem to be printing all the good zines at the moment, nice one!
J.Tindall, 51 Lion Lane, Haslemere, Surrey, GU27 1JF

Youth Culture Killed My Dog #5
$2/ Trade for 40 A5 copied pages
Great smashed up yoof zine, and I really mean that! This appears to be written by a bunch of young teen punks still riding high on the initial buzz of discovering punk rock. This energy really comes across in all the reviews/ rants. I love the Kurt Cobain thing in the inside front page, in fact I like it so much you can see I pinched it for this zine! I’m really looking forward to seeing more of these.
310 W Second St, Anderson, IN 46016, USA

Trashpit #7
£1 for 26 A5 printed pages
Poshest looking zine ever, it’s like a magazine in sheep's clothing or something. Great writing and great layouts, this time featuring The Erotics (Teenage Casket Company touring buddies), All American Rejects, Glitterati, and bizarrely Idlewild! And for the first time Trash Pit comes with zine reviews, huzzah!
Trashpit, 95 Flamstead Ave, Loscoe, Heanor, Derbyshire, DE75 7RP or

WQR Wolfshead Quarterly Review
£? for 15 A6 copied pages
This is a wee zine/ catalogue for something called Wolfs Head Press and was actually printed in 1995 so I guess it’s about a decade out of date, but that’s never any sort of reason for a zine like us to pass it by! There are some great titles in here too, like ‘Crop Circles for Fun and Profit’. I’ve not had a bunch of luck figuring out if Wolfs Head is still going or not, let me know if you find out!

You Can’t Say No To Hope #6
£NOWT for 8 A4 copied pages
I’m really pleased to see this zine land on my doormat again. This time the ‘project’ in the centre pages is a bat box, I still need to get round to making the log torch mentioned in the last issue! There’s also a bit about Wrestling, which I must say I agree with totally, I never did get how men in lycra were supposed to look tough, not that I care at all or indeed even have a television on which to witness these morons! I’m going to try and distro this to people that buy Beat Motel, so if you are a subscriber with any luck you’ll get a copy with your next issue of Beat Motel! In the meantime get in touch with Jon at YCNTH and grab yerself a copy of the current issue.
71 Merlin Avenue, Nuneaton, CU10 9JY

3 Ways of Armageddon
Irritate/ Social Chaos/ Olho Degato Split album
Irritate do just that, it’s sludgy metal. I’m not big metal fan but I’ll try anything once, sadly in this case. Social Chaos are way more intense thrashy early 80s punk. Shame they chose to record the drums in a shoebox (by the sounds of this). Olho Degato are much more my kinda thing, a stoner sort of riffing mess just on the edge of falling apart. It’s dirty dirty rock and it appears to be recorded life. The singer sounds like he could teach whatever the opposite to anger management would be. This is violent stuff.
Buy it direct from
Andrew Culture

34 Cars
Pretty much yer average amateur easy rock band. The recording was a little quiet, so perhaps better production could have enhanced the sound a little, yet it doesn't change the fact that I got bored halfway through the first track and thought it didn't bode well for the remaining tracks. Yet when it came to the next, a bit more potential was evident as it had a bit of a jokey, light rock/punk style like a less energetic Jilted John and wasn't too bad. Their 'most popular' track 'Tomorrow' was tedious, repetitive and when it sounded like it was about to 'take off' went back to the tediousness. The last track was another possible saving grace for this band, a nice acoustic track you could chill out to..or fall asleep to, in the relaxing way. 5/10 for only half of it being not too bad, with a bit more 'oomph' this band could maybe improve, yet this isn't winning any awards just yet. Standout track/s: 'Bouncy Castle', 'Weekend Casualty'.
- Jess

Against Me
Searching for a former clarity
Whenever I get sent an album by a band that carries a lot of hype it makes me very weary. As any reader of Beat Motel will know I’m currently on about minus 34,567 scene points, and as such I’ve never heard Against Me before. This band prides themselves on being new an innovative, and whilst I don’t think they break any new ground as such there are barely two songs on this album that sound alike, which is the kinda thing that really gets me interested. The first track has a definitely Levellers type folky rock vibe to it and as with most of the album the vocals are kinda shouted, but in a very tuneful way. There is a shite load of variety here, some tracks sound like straight up punk, others sound more like a mish mash band like The Cougars. Track 4 sounds strangely like the Bloodhound Gang! This is an album that is going straight in my favourites pile and after a few years I’m sure will become one of my all time favourite albums of all time.
Andrew Culture

Akayzia Parker
The Partys Over
From the very start of this cd it’s startlingly clear that this woman has one of the most gorgeous and down right shaggable voices you’ve ever heard. You’d run across broken glass with baby crocodiles hanging from your genitalia just for the promise of a peck on the cheek. Men will leave their wives, nations will crumble leaderships will be toppled, Akayzia has a voice that will bring on a million mid-life crisis. The music is a sort of rockier Brand New Heavies, it’s packed with soul and that voice is just so bloody fantastic, I want to marry her!
Andrew Culture

Aluminum Babe
Everything To Me
Cute electronica pop, poppier than St.Etinene and cleaner then Helen Love. Reminds me of a smoother sounding Soho Dolls. This EP has a pleasing kinda innocence about it and the electronic blips and blops aren’t too invasive. The last track ’not to easy to forget’ is much more like it, a bit gruff kinda punky, but still dead cute. I still think it’s a con when labels bung remixes on as B-Sides though.
Andrew Culture

Andy, Glenn and Ritch
Escape From The Bastille
The first track on this cd sounds like some really heavy arse ripping hardcore, but someone forgot to stamp on the fuzz box. Throughout this EP the bass and guitar fight each other in a complex battle of riffs and counter riffs, maybe even tertiary riffs. This is totally unique in it’s cleanness and works very well. After five tracks the novelty had worn a bit thin, there’s almost too much to take in.
Andrew Culture

Angry Boy
This band tell me in their covering letter that I should go and see them if I’m ‘bored’, which I must confess didn’t inspire me to listen to their cd as soon as possible. Angry Boy are kinda like The Refused but with more mumbling and odd noises. There are only two tracks on this cd, both are pretty smart and I imagine this band rips the fuck out of any stage. Some of the noises flood the mix a bit and the shouty vocals are spot on, let down slightly by the ‘normal’ singing. I’m hoping this band plays somewhere nearby. Although I notice from their covering letter they are doing some gigs for ‘talent scout’ in London, talent scout are scum preying on bands trying to get somewhere, avoid them at all costs.
Andrew Culture

The Authentics
Back Down To Earth
Some very smart bass playing over some very run of the mill American sounding pop rock. This whole package smacks of a desire to hit the big time, which is fine if that’s what they want, but to me they sound like they are being a bit deliberate about the whole thing. Insert Catchy chorus here, insert squealy guitar bit here, insert blues type riff here, insert shout along backing vocals here etc etc etc.
This band is technically proficient, but then so are church organists and I have no desire to listen to them either.
Andrew Culture

The Break In
Good to see IATDE doing so bloody well and still putting out the stuff they want to. This album got my heckles up within 20 seconds, just a personal thing but I hate double bass drum pedals, I think they are for the lazy! Anyhew, this isn’t the place for that particular never ending discussion. The Break In would sound more hardcore than metal if they played a normal tuning, the vocals aren’t quite an out and out metal growl but not far off. It’s far too lame of me to say this isn’t my kinda thing, so instead I’m gonna say them riffs could floor a running obese elephant. This actually reminds me of Chilean Metallers Criminal.
Andrew Culture

Cause for Effect
Professional 300
What the fuck is this??? It’s like Primus for metal heads. You’ve got some Brazilian lad growling in true 80s metal style, flawless metal drumming, some insanely amazing bass playing, but no guitars! Each song is just a few seconds long and has more than a few interesting ideas in each one. Ultimately this made me laugh, probably not a good thing! But if you like Primus and want to hear someone doing something bloody odd with the format then you must buy this CD. You’ll have to buy your own copy as I’m keeping this!
Buy it direct from
Andrew Culture

Cruel Face
Eu Amo Desgraca
Arg, I just can’t take any more metal. I don't’ get vocals that sound like they were done by a Wookie recovering from throat cancer. As metal vocals go this would be a sumo weight Wookie. Sorry Bucho Discos, I tried!
Buy it direct from
Andrew Culture

Pillow Talk
So this band has eight members, a brass section, synths and god knows what else, must be pretty cramped in that van! The first track is an awkward discordant mess, not at all representative of the rest of the album, maybe they are pulling the same trick The Replacements did on Hootenanny? Each song still has a slightly awkward slant to it, nicely polished by the unobtrusive horns. The singer sounds like someone that would be a nightmare to take to a library or anywhere else that requires softly hushed voices. There aren’t really any big strong knockout choruses but I’m pretty sure they would only cheapen what is a marvellous (albeit crowded) sound. Riding the dials for this album is none other than Steve Albini, and it really shows, especially with the awesome drum sound. Fans of the other bands he has worked with are likely to enjoy Cougars as well, it’s got that Pixies kinda feel to it. There some distinctly bluesy moments that make this band sounds like they might be Gallon Drunk under a secret name, only not as unhinged. They also get kudos for one of the best song titles ever ‘someone out there has my boner picture’.
Andrew Culture

Pillow Talk
This is a pretty interesting one.... there's 8 of them, they have a horn section but they're not ska and they have song titles like "someone out there has my boner picture". at times they bring to mind the likes of drive like jehu/rocket from the crypt/sweep the leg Johnny. they have a way of playing that's sludgy and pretty discordant in a good way. the singer, whoever he is has a darn cool howl on him and it all adds up to an album that sounds like a night out on the piss in a foreign town....confusing, scary but ultimately fucking fun. if you like any of the bands mentioned it's worth checking out.

Peaigo Iminenie
Flat out 80s punk all the way from Brazil. They sound like a local band in Ipswich called The Fanny Pads with a sound that’s definitely punk, but just a shake of a studded belt away from metal. It’s musically competent enough, but I never was the worlds biggest Exploited fan. I don’t think anyone is distroing this label over here in the UK so get in touch direct via
Andrew Culture

Desert Monkey Water Damage CDEP - SELF RELEASE
Firstly, gotta love the name. When this CD started I thought 'great, some classic rock/metal going on here', yet soon the cd faded into the background as I found something else to occupy my mind and didn't realise it had gone on to a different track. In terms of ability none of the members can really be faulted. Although most of the songs are nothing amazing, it is quite enjoyable and could translate well live, especially with the added energy live performance brings to music. 7/10, not bad at all, but nothing spectacular. Standout track: 'Volume Phrasing', purely cause it had a bit more 'oomph' and some funky guitar work.
- Jess

Dogshit Sandwich
Birmingham Street Punk. Like a cross between the Macc Lads and The Exploited. Charming song titles like Burp My Worm, Slutz, Punk Shit, Ballz, Dogshit Sandwich, Gary Glitter You Fucking Cunt, Drink n Fight and Fat Poisonous Bastard. This compo takes in stuff from 1999 – 2001. The first half is badly recorded and played thrash punk. The second half is better on both counts and some of the tracks remind me of the Exploiteds punk-metal crossover stuff. Biggest let-down for me is the vocals which are supposed to be butch and punk but sound like he’s gonna burst into tears. Cover versions of Conflict, Business, Pogues and Macc Lads. Not really for me – I’d go for something a bit tighter and better produced (Exploited – Troops of Tomorrow, Discharge – Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing.)
Graham Culture

I want you
When this single starts it sounds like Elastica and Kraftwork happen to be in the same practise room. The female vocals are laid back to the point they sound like someone is ready for beddy byes. Elena have a really easy going sound, one that you’d probably hear on stage at the Bronze Bar in Buffy. There are some slightly more raucous moments where things start to sound a bit like Hole. Apparently the industry is in a swoon over this band (don’t all press releases say that?) but they didn’t convince me I should get excited about the Libertines and I can’t say I’m too excited with Elena. It’s all a bit earnest and safe for my tastes.
Andrew Culture

The Exposed
On Your Radio EP
South coast punks The Exposed release their first EP with a 5 song selection of Pop Punk Rock heavily influenced by the lyrical content of Anti-Flag and the catchy tunes of The Bouncing Souls.
‘On your radio EP’ opens with a radio clip quickly followed by a fast and furious opening minute of punk fuelled insanity. ‘The Cats getting fatter’ is a great opener to get you into the EP and draws you in to listen to more, the chorus is catchy, and it’s certainly one of the better songs on here.
After this comes on the best song on the EP, ‘Overboard’ is the song that stands out above the rest. The acoustic start is a change from the opener and leads onto a tune reminiscent of early Blink 182 material, which is always a good thing.
‘I'm sorry’ is nothing really to really grab much interest, it fills up the song count and keeps the CD flowing. The penultimate song, ‘You’ve changed’ has yet again a very pop punk feel to it and certainly gets you nodding your head in joy, opening with a drum solo quickly followed by a great bass line it gets you hooked straight away. I’m not a fan of covers songs, especially the last track on this EP. I can’t see the reason for covering this song, ‘It’s the end of the world’ is no doubt known by thousands, if millions of people but I feel the execution is poor compared to the other 4 songs. It’s a bit of a letdown to the record but none the less tops of an excellent EP Overall ‘On your radio’ is a promising EP from a band who have not been around very long, if a few months. It shows real potential for them to become a lot bigger in the Punk pop/rock scene and hopefully the next record will be just as pleasing.
Iain Griffiths

Fallout Boy
Sugar, We’re Going Down
Well it’s all happening for Fallout Boy at the moment, they’ve sold out their UK tour and apparently have the USA all in a lather. Possibly thanks to the fact they are on THREE major labels I only got one track to listen to. It’s pop-punk taken to it’s logical conclusion, it’s got breaks, licks, ticks and harmonies so sweat I thought I was gonna puke. The problem is that it’s so damn catchy I can’t get it out of my head BE GONE. In fact the vocals really remind me of One:Day:Life. If you’re wondering where Amos on Emerdale has gone to these days, well Fallout boy kidnapped him and stole his sideburns. There’s not really much point in me saying any more, I’m sure by the time you read this review you’ve heard plenty about this band!
Andrew Culture

The New Empire CDEP -
It is hard to believe that this is a debut e.p. and the guys are still in university. Of the moment indie-rock/punk in style yet something different about them too, all tracks could be singles with their catchy choruses (particularly 'Science Is Everything'), distinctive vocals and admirable musical talent. So good I pressed play again after the initial pre-review listen. It's only a matter of time before they snapped up. 10/10 - MTV2, The Amp and the we come. Standout tracks: All, but as for favourites, it has to be 'Science Is Everything'. New
E.P. out Jan 2006.
- Jess

From Plan To Progress
Bombs, Towns and Chords
This EP doesn't even give you time to take breath for launching into some really smart sounding hardcore. It’s fast paced but not thrashy, not taking the hardcore shortcut of dumbing down to play faster. Vocals are clear and sung not shouted, it’s a decent package that this band offers you and they are blistering live. They were good enough to send me the artwork for this EP on a disc so I thought I’d be good enough to print it in here, you can see it on the previous page.
Andrew Culture

Fuselage are Southpaw reincarnated, and whilst a lot of what we’ve come to expect from Southpaw is still there (smart vocals, oddly intricate basslines and staccato guitars) they have taken things up a notch. These tracks are more frantic, almost to the point that they come off sounding a little unsure of themselves and awkward. I’d say the new sound is promising, maybe it’s just not there yet, I look forward to an album as the last Southpaw album ‘Trajectories’ is still in my top 20 playlist!
Andrew Culture

LIVE In LA 1988 / Live At Victoria Hall 1983
Formed in 1980 in Birmingham GBH were one of the bigger 1982 UK thrash punk bands. A few good tracks (Race Against Time, No Survivors, Sick Boy) and one good LP (City Baby…) This is great for any GBH fans out there. The 1988 LA gig has multiple camera angles and quality audio. The 1983 gig has decent camera work and, again, great audio. Personally I thought GBH were one of the biggest bandwagon fakes ever and their later stuff is the most boring, uninspired ‘punk’ I’ve ever heard. BUT, as I said, if you like the band then this is a good quality release.
Graham Culture

The Ghost of May
The Ghost of May
I only got a sampler of this album, but I think it’s given me a pretty good impression of what can be described as thoughtful stuff. It’s mostly acoustic in feel with nice meandering tunes and strong choruses. The vocals are good too, apart from when they try and oversing and do that weird wobbly voice thing some people feel the need to do. Overall the sound is original and will encroach on your musical palette whether you like it or not. That doesn’t make a whole lot of sense but I’ve got a stinking cold and have whiplash so it’s the best you’re gonna get.
Andrew Culture

Glyn Bailey
Toys from Balsa
It’s nice to now and again to hear something so refreshing and new from an English solo artist. ‘Toys from Balsa’ is the first solo album from artist Glyn Bailey.
Opening with ‘Sorry’ the album kicks off in a very happy and catchy way, with great harmonies and a tune that’s worthy of any opening track. This level of amazement runs through the whole 15 track album giving songs about Relationships, Cannibalism and Laurel and Hardy. The tunes are unusual, but with vocals to remind you of David Bowie it takes you back to the 80’s in a glimpse and certainly is a relaxing record to listen too. Something after a hard days work to put in the CD player and spin.
‘He says she says’ is lyrically very deep and is one of the outstanding tracks on this album. It’s matched by ‘My love is out in space’ which is as retro as it gets as far as a solo song goes.
‘D block girl’ has yet again a retro 80’s feel to it, with a tune to match, and makes you tap your foot in excitement. The artwork is well presented, with a lyrics booklet and some great photos inside it has been professionally constructed and gives the album another level or greatness. Overall this record is an excellent solo album, and at a whopping 1 hour 13 minutes it is certainly worth a long listen. Not being a fan of solo artists work I found this album very entertaining, and has brought back a bit of the 80’s music I liked a lot.
Iain Griffiths

Guitar Wolf
Golden Black, the best of
Describing this Japanese Rock n Roll garage band as bollock blastingly blistering would be like describing a streaker as someone who dislikes clothes, it gives you a vague idea but really doesn’t do the situation justice. This is the only cd I’ve ever put on and actually feared for my speakers. Played too loud I imagine this cd could destroy small buildings and throw migratory birds off course. It’s the loudest maddest rock and roll I’ve heard in my life, I couldn’t even tell you if the lyrics are in English or Japanese. Guitar Wolf take the John Spenser Blues Explosion/ Gallon Drunk formula to it’s most insane and uncomfortable conclusion. There are screams, belting bits of feedback and random explosions thrown into the mix at the most unlikely moment. There’s an amazing 26 tracks on this cd, all chosen by fans. It’s a bleedin’ racket but a fucking great one!
Andrew Culture

Sometimes noise is a great and marvellous thing, the Jesus and Mary Chain are a fine example. Sometimes screaming in accompaniment to frantic fast riffs is a great and marvellous thing, the Refused are a great example. Harpies aren’t a great example of either. The second track reminded me of the breathy style of Chapterhouse, which I must say came of something of a surprise after the bleedin’ racket that the first track was. Sadly it reminds me of Chapterhouse’s second album, which synth tinged dog shit. For once the radio edit on a single is better than the normal version.
Andrew Culture

Razorwire EP
Eratic but tuneful and memorable spazz pop from some sleazy bar like the one in From Dusk Till Dawn. Intoxica are like Rocket From The Crypt without the cheesy horror edge, they are surf pop without the forced smiles and stupid shirts. Intoxica are good, funny looking bunch of buggers though.
Andrew Culture

Ipanema deserve to be bigger than they are now. A line I can be sure about. ‘Me me me’ is a fine example of how a short album/EP should be. It’s not too long but each song packs in a mean selection of ear bursting riffs while still maintaining a lovely melodic sound to it. With the opener ‘Nervosa’ one of the best songs on this mini album, it grabs you by the throat, literally, and hooks you in. The mini album rolls through with each song different to the other, but each as amazing as the other. Not only can IPANEMA write awesome riffs and blinding tunes but the lyrics to go with it inducing themes of general life with the harshness of reality.
At first glance at the CD it doesn’t really attract you and make you want to listen, the artwork isn’t too great, but I can assure you, if you miss out listening to tracks like ‘Flag burner’ and ‘Lockjaw’ you will really, be missing out. I suggest you check out this 3 piece band who give British music a new lease of life.
Iain Griffiths

A Place
More easy going as inoffensive than Badly Drawn Boy, but not as edgy. Sarcasm doesn’t really work in reviews does it? This certainly sounds like something you’d hear on Radio 2, it’s sickly sweet pop with some ‘quirky’ horns. Didn’t make a massive impression on me and the tight buggers only put one track on the promo disc.
Andrew Culture

The Jesus Years
The Jesus Years
A lot of bands could learn a hell of a lot from The Jesus years about what creativity really is from this band. It’s not about what part of your fucking ugly face your fringe covers, it’s not about how much cash you can spend on musical equipment in one lifetime, it’s all about something truly new and unpretentious. Even the packaging on this cd made me smile, its’ a photo of a dog that must have been snapped while it was shaking it’s head, I’ll try and scan it and bung it on this page so you can see what I’m yibbering on about. The Jesus Years don’t seem to give a crap what you want to know about them, they just want to make music, cool sleeves and be damned with the consequences. Track one starts with nowt but drumming for 30 seconds, now I’d like to see any major label band be allowed to do that! Tracks are instrumental without the dirge of Pelican (and I love that dirge), they are simply good songs that don’t need a singer. It’s indie but not too jangly, it’s art-rock but not too arty, it’s just fucking great! I’m not going to taint this cd by trying to draw anymore comparisons, I’m just going to say this is what Stereolab would sound like if I was God.
Andrew Culture

Get Me On a Road
Joya sound like a band you’d put on a mix tape for a girl you’d just started going out with to show her you have a sensitive side. Yet when your mates come round you’d hide the cd. If your mates found it you’d claim you never paid for it and it was actually sent to you for free as a review copy It’s chirpy enough, and everything has it’s place. I do like how on the artwork they’ve separated the album into two lumps as if it was an LP, but ZEEB did that for their album as well.
Andrew Culture

Competent musicianship, pop-rock melodies and brags of Major Label close shaves on their PR sheet, it would be so easy for me to destroy this. But I want a cup of tea so I won’t. I hope they get everything they desire, in which case you’ll be seeing them on telly real soon.
Andrew Culture

Sign The Flag In Blood
This album defines the phrase ‘long awaited’, and I’m talking years and years here. Kneedeep are one of a speedily shrinking number of Ipswich bands still playing proper punk. Strongly political without getting patronising this album has some seriously catchy tracks, kinda like a more 77 style Anti-Flag. There’s real thought put into this album, and from all the neat little ideas spread throughout the time I can’t help but wonder if the three or four year delay this band had to get to their debut album did them some favours. This band is seriously underrated and seriously individual. Buy this album, if you don’t love it dearly after a few listens I’ll eat the fucking flag. Get it from
Andrew Culture

The Liberation
In the Beginning Man Created God
The particularly angry covering letter explained that The Liberation are trying to do something different, which is always a bold brag and usually a fair indicator that a band is gonna suck balls. Whilst being so lo-fi they must walk around on their knees this recording is actually pretty interesting. Some parts seem a bit crow-barred in just to be different but on the whole the 77 punk, dub ska and god knows what else keeps things interesting. I hate to come across anti-DIY (but not much) but I’d like to hear what this lot would sound like in a decent studio. I’ve gotta say that intro speech is one of the most cringe worthy things I’ve heard in a long time!
Andrew Culture

Hi, Everything's Great
Having not heard anything of this band until I saw brief feature on them, I had no idea what to expect. I thought I'd take a chance with this album and was not disappointed. The production is brilliant and the album is pretty close to that as well. Bringing to mind the Something To Write Home About era by the Get Up Kids and Sorry About Tomorrow era Hot Rod Circuit, the album is a happy bounce along record, which while not revolutionary is still a really enjoyable listen. Emo the way it should be. Happy, melodious and with just a little bit of country in there. Anyone who likes Saves The Day, either of the aforementioned bands or Weezer should have a listen.
See for more information/downloads.
Marc Newby

Liz Melia
Liz has a very sweet yet sultry voice, deep, note perfect and a wonderful vehicle for the Fairport Convention melodies. Sadly there just seems to be so much stuff like this about at the moment, someone is going to have to do something really amazing to cut through.
Andrew Culture

Los Salvadores
Is this a Set up?
I’m not sure if this is the second release from this band or not, I’ve heard some tracks of their before and loved them dearly. This EP takes up where the last one left off. This band is huge in number and sound, there’s all kind of stuff going on if you pay attention, but it all comes together to create a fantastic sound. They folk tinged without going down the whole ‘hey nonny nonny’ route, they are far more punk than that! Songs are so catchy I’m gonna have to see a doctor, this is an instant hit. I’d say they’ll be on the warped tour within the year. Grab it.
Andrew Culture

Beneath A Burning Sky
When I saw this in my 'CDs to review' package, I admit I didn't know how I was gonna write a fairly unbiased review as generally they are not my cup of tea. Saying that, however, musically it is all you could want from a metal band, it is just the vocals that I cannot get used to, shouting and screaming their way through a song so much so that it sounds like their voice is about to go. In the title track there was some excellent guitar work towards the end, but to me the second track sounded like a shorter version of the first. The third track surprised me by showing me that the singer could actually sing. The drums were energetic and once more there was some great guitar work going on. For me the better track of the single. If you like hard metal, then you will like this CD, and maybe even if you are still unsure about shouty/screamy vocals it is worth a shot too. The single also comes with a video of the title track, which is always good. 6/10 overall, standout track: 'Divided We Fall'.

More Than A Machine
Even although I didn’t know this album was coming out I think I’ve been subconsciously looking forward to it for ages. I’ve really loved everything I’ve ever heard from Milloy, especially the split they did with Leif Erricson. This album is harder than previous offerings, the vocals have more bite to them and the production is clean as a whistle whist retaining a good gruff edge. As far as I’m concerned the bass playing in Milloy is the standard that we should all aspire to. Milloy are tuneful, powerful, intricate (yet accessible) and even if you’ve never heard of them I’d say this album is a good intro to their world.
Andrew Culture

H ah ah ah, this is really all over the place, I’m pretty sure it’s a dodgy cd rather than being deliberate! From what I can make out someone is trying to get a bass sound like the one in ‘Take my breath away’. This is a big band, and from the sound of it they are doing their best to outplay each other. This sounds like a band you’d see at some awful battle of the bands competition, they’d probably win too! The music is tuneful and kinda friendly and as they are releasing this themselves I should really stop taking the piss and give them kudos for getting of their arse and doing something, take note oh lazy bastards of the world, bands like Missileer are putting you to shame.
Andrew Culture

Friend of the Night
I’ve been wanting to hear Mogwai for a good long time. I was just sent a one song promo which is a bit of a let down but the one track they sent me is a corker. Mogwai play an instrumental game, this piano led track is atmospheric without being daft and mighty without being heavy. You could summarise Mogwai as being for people that would like Pelican if it wasn’t for the heaviness. If you don’t know who pelican are you need to pay more attention, they are interviewed elsewhere in this zine!
Andrew Culture

BBC sessions & in concert
Another Motorhead comp – this time there’s maybe something the fan wants! Featuring a Peel session from 1978, a live concert from ’79, David Jensen ’81 and a Friday Rock Show session ’86. That’s 22 tracks spread over 2 cd’s. DR Rock, Orgasmatron, Killed by Death, Fast & Loose, No Class, Stay Clean, Capricorn etc, etc. Music-wise it’s good but not comparable to the mighty Ace of Spades or the proper studio releases. Of course that don’t matter a shit cos this is for true Motorhead fans! So if there’s any true Motorheadbangers out there then what the fuck you waiting for?
Graham Culture

This starts with some fruity keyboards, but I’m expecting some The Refused type riffery to come in. Sadly I’m mistaken, sounds like a band that makes dinner party music is having a go at a porno soundtrack, or maybe this would be the soundtrack if Pat Metheny made filth? Either way I’m off now to try and figure out who Silvia Saint is.
Andrew Culture

I’m Invincible, I’m Built Like a Sherman Tank, Somebody Try and Stop Me
Like everything other band that has sent me something to review Mr.Shiraz claim they are breaking down the boundaries of music as we know it. Sounds to me like they are playing SKA, which has to be the most formulaic genre ever. Some of the none-ska moments are pretty class, especially the guitar work. There are also the usual ‘comedy’ moments like silly backing vocals and porn sound effects. When all is said and done I just don’t like ska, sorry lads.
Andrew Culture

One Toy Soldier
Concrete Smiles At the Midnight Hospital Diner
Imagine EMO if it wasn’t that annoying, had some cheery moments, and more jangly guitars than screaming miserable bastards. That’s not a million miles from whatcha got here, just add some sweet female backing vocals in and it’s a recipe that works really well. Don’t let my mention of EMO put you off, or the fact I’m writing this whilst wearing a cardigan.
Andrew Culture

Pama International
Dub Store Special
Summer is here! Well admittedly it’s pissing it down with rain, it’s feckin’ cold and the sky is grey. But bung this slice of dub on your music system, kick back and enjoy the warmth.
Andrew Culture

Pama International
Dub Store Special
This cd is full of nice, breezy reggae. Though the talent is there and there is nothing to fault about the songs really aside from they mostly sound very similar, this would be a good CD to chill out to. Or get stoned to if that's yer idea of chilling out heh. Two of the songs are just dubbed versions of two other tracks on the CD, so I think perhaps another separate track would have been better. Generally i'd say for reggae fans only, but if you want some calm background music rather than yer usual stuff then this is also worth a chance. 7/10
- Jess

Penny Red
Penny Red have been about longer than any other Ipswich band bar LoveJunk, Red Flag77 and Junk Culture. And to be fair haven’t always had a great reputation. They are the only band I’ve ever seen cover Teenage Kicks, and upon announcing they had just played it had members of the crowd turn to each other and say, “really?”. But that was a long time ago, and now they have real songs, real melodies and all kinds of things going on. To be honest if someone had played this then told me it was Penny Red I would have questioned their integrity. Their sound has an undeniable punk edge but of the most pop kind, they are far from out and out punk and a large part of their sound is more classic rock, there are even a few moments that sound decidedly Dinosaur Jnr. So there you have it, an album full of proper songs! One thing I don’t get is why they put the two stand out tracks at the end, but you’ll have to buy the album to see what I mean.
Andrew Culture

Acupuncture For The Soul
I wasn't sure what to make of this Swiss 5-piece at first. it was funky, then just interesting. Then it seemed average. But as it went on it seemed to kick in a bit. So it takes a while to get going, but when it does get good, it kinda makes up for the other tracks. It's still not amazing, and metal fans might think it is not the best, but it's quite enjoyable, and would be pretty cool live - even if it is a bit hit and miss in places. Though you gotta love some of the song names such as 'Cute & Fluffy', 'Sillykonne' and 'Peace Tank Peekaboom'. The artwork is notably intricate, interesting and in a way represents the band's style well. 7/10, Standout Tracks: Cute & Fluffy, The Smell Of God, Rascal Sarabande, Peace Tank Peekaboom.
- Jess

Potemkin city limits
Another four years another new Propagandhi album. nothing much has changed, they're still pissed off with the state of human disaffection, they still write fast melodic hardcore songs and they still refer to themselves with
names like tit face. there's less aggression on show this time around musically but the passion, intelligence and intensity are still all there. "A Speculative Fiction" kicks things off with some clean melancholic guitar before things shift into straight up double time drums, frantic riffing and
understated vocal harmonies which is par for the course for the rest of the album. I guess some people would say it's more about what these guys say than what they play but they still write some of the best melodic hardcore around and they never lose you while tackling subjects like the lack of anything sustainable behind modern popular music and the imminent (in their
heads) downfall of American society. at the end of the day, if you liked the last Propagandhi album you'll love this one and if you didn't then, wont.

The Psychotic Reaction
Too many bands these days try and fly before they can musically walk, the advent of good quality home recording gear has meant a lot of bands are putting out albums when they should still be a couple of years away from recording their first EP. Tons of bands that fall into this trap end up sounding more like Keith Harris and Orville at Felixstowe Spa Pavilion than Metalica at Donnington Monsters of Rock. Whilst the Psychotic Reaction have an undeniable lo-fi edge they totally validate the whole home recorded field. This album should stand as a shining example of what can be done with skill, talent, song writing ability and a limitless amount of time for recording. This band shits out smart ideas, and nothing seems forced. The whole album has a laid back vibe that (far from getting boring) keeps you very interested. The variety they present makes this album like some sort of journey. Imagine what Badly Drawn Boy would be like if his output was actually interesting. There are shadows of so many influences in this band, ranging from Love, Velvet Underground to almost any band signed to Creation Records in the late 80s. ‘Rumble; oozes intelligence and stays a healthy shake away from disappearing up it’s own arse. If I was pinned to the ground by a giant slug that demanded negative criticism I’d say the album’s start is far too meandering. I have to sit and listen to the entire album to be able to review it properly but maybe Joe Public would get bored and switch off, admittedly it would be their loss, but a shame never the less.
Just as a final comment, they have one of the strangest bass sounds I’ve ever heard, it sounds like it either came from ark or was made using the same wood!
Andrew Culture

Random Heroes
Maximum Scene Points
12 songs in 21 minutes, just one of the signs this album is pure punk through and through. They see themselves as pop punk but I think there’s something deeper than your average shiny pop punk. They certainly sound far more Anti-Flag than Blink 182!
Andrew Culture

Bombs for Food, Mines for Freedom
This is hardcore of the hardest kind. The riffs rip along pretty smartly without resorting to the ‘breakdown get out clause’. It’s just the vocals I can’t get my head round, it’s a whole bunch of screaming, I couldn’t even tell if it was in time with the music or not. This is a very heavy album, and there are some smart ideas that lift it above yer standard formulaic hardcore but I just can’t get in on with that screaming! I know a lot of people who would love this band though, in fact they remind me a bit of This Mourning After.
Andrew Culture

Rise Against
The Unravelling
Fans will notice this is a re-release of Rise Against’s 2001 debut album. I’m never that sure why labels re-release stuff that’s still available on their back catalogue but this has opened my eyes to a band I’d only previously heard on the occasional Fat Wreck compilation. Rise Against pound with a ferocity that is stunning, although I’d still call this pop punk. Vocals are like a poppier Sick of it All whilst the backing is clanking bass and searing guitars. If you love you punk then you probably already own this very Fat Wreck sounding album, if not then you should.
Andrew Culture

The Roughcutz
Another Week, Another War
CDLP - ???
I must admit I groaned when I saw I had more ska to listen to, but this is more like proper ska. It’s smart to hear some Hammond Organ, Subtle horns and cheeky lyrics. Apparently Roddy Radiation from The Specials is playing on this album, but it’s not a case of him carrying the band, and to be honest this album is strong enough not to need that kinda namey bolstering. Some of the lyrics made me laugh out loud too, such as, “but she didn’t look so good in the chip shop light”. If 2-Tone style cheeky chappy ska is your kinda thing you can’t go far with this album. Check out the ‘old photos’ on their website too, class stuff!
Andrew Culture

Manga Girl EP
Bouncy boingy pop with keyboards that sound like they are belching. This EP is along the lines of pretty much everything that is popular in the mainstream rock world right now but a whole ton more original. The vocals have a sort of spazzy Talking Heads quirky quality which helps add to the whole package that Rosalita present, and it’s catchy as cold sores. Whilst they retain a very definite sound of their own each track on this EP shows plenty of originality and whilst this band has only been about for a short while they have more musical maturity than half the bands around in the (s)hit parade at the moment.
Andrew Culture

Screeching Weasel
If you don’t know nothing about Screeching Weasel (like me) then here’s the lowdown. Formed in 1986 in Chicago by Ben Weasel after he saw the Ramones. Split in 2000. The end. What? You want more? Okey dokey… This is a best of featuring a whopping 34 tracks spanning their entire career. From the first LP ‘Boogadaboogadaboogada’ up to ‘Teen Punks In Heat’. Music-wise the Ramones influence is blindingly obvious (with a bit of The Dickies and Circle Jerks thrown in.) Lyric-wise Ben Weasel sounds like an angry young man. A couple of songs in particular (I Wanna Be A Homosexual and Racist Society) really do have something to say about society, homophobia, dumb bastards etc. Mike Dirnt from Green Day guests on 3 tracks but don’t let that put you off (although the first track he appears on sounds like, you’ve guessed it, Green Day.) Music is well produced and I certainly would recommend this. If you like the Ramones or just cool punk rock with a little something to say then buy it. NOW!!
Graham Culture

Song & Legend
Ahhh – some Goth/Punk to review, this should be fun… Right, well, believe it or not, I thought I was gonna like this but I gotta say it’s a rancid pile of shite. Originally released in 1983 this features the original album and 3 bonus tracks. Back in the early 80’s I used to compile punk tracks from John Peel onto cassette, one of those bands was Sex Gang Children, from whom I had one of the Peel sessions recordings. They seemed like good songs – Kill Machine, German Nun etc (featured here but re-recorded.) Well I don’t know what happened (apparently it was produced by Tony James of Generation X) but the LP sounds awful. Guitars are practically non-existent, vocals too loud and the songs are just plain bad. To call the lyrics pretentious is a fucking understatement. The whole thing is just unlistenable garbage. If your idea of fun is the musical accompaniment to a wake then here ya go. Any would-be Goths out there reading this – Sisters of Mercy, Fields of the Nephilim, even, God help me, The Mission but not this, NOT THIS!!!
Graham Culture

The Shocker
Up Your Ashtray
Possibly the loudest band I’ve ever heard, amongst the very loud members is Jennifer Finch from L7. This album is flat out rock and roll noisy rawkus gang shouting greatness. I’d love to see this band live but I’d probably hide at the back of the room being scared of them. This is what Hole would sound like if they were drunk and competent, I bet Kelly Osborne would love to make an album like this.
Andrew Culture

Climb the walls
This is not my thing at all.
Don’t get me wrong, this may be the music some people like, it may be something some people like but others don’t. I don’t.
The vocals and harmonies are very good, but Superheroes fall into the category or an NME type band, and really don’t sound any different to any other Brit Indy music. Its bland, a bit boring and not really something to get excited about.
This three track demo is well put together, a nice cover, and it’s been well produced, it’s a shame the tracks don’t meet up with the same enthusiasm.
This may seem like a biased review. But as someone who does not really listen to this sort of music. It can’t be helped.
Iain Griffiths

This Et Al
You've Driven For Miles & Not Remembered A Thing
This band have been compared to yourcodenameis:milo, Queens of The Stone Age and Sonic Youth to name but a few. The reason for this is because it is fairly average indie music. Whilst there are no complaints on actual talent, the songs just didn't do it for me at all. However, if you love the bands mentioned and like your indie, then I recommend checking these guys out. 5/10
- Jess

Tommy Twist and the Jive
Don’t Want You To Go
Hell this band sound like a whole lot of bands from around the Mersey a while back, remember the Milltown Brothers, The Dylans and The Stairs? They have a totally retro ‘beat’ sound that’s dead catchy, and whilst the vocals waver a little at points (whose don’t) the harmonies are all brilliant. Nice friendly retro pop, I’d like to see them live.
Andrew Culture

The Ugly Truth About Blackpool
This CD is a mammoth project covering the musical development of Blackpool from 1977 to 2005. It’s a hell of a project apparently supported in part by The Arts Council of England and Blackpool Council! I’m not going to go through every one of the 27 bands, I’ll just give you an idea. The cd starts with some fairly generic 77 punk that to a certain extent blends in a way that makes me wonder if they shared a few band members! The early 80s stuff is where it starts to get good, although thrash punk never apparently made it to Blackpool! During the 90s there were some really good bands in Blackpool, without there ever being a ‘Blackpool Sound’ (bar the 77 stuff) the town certainly appears to have been a hotbed of creativity. Here are some of the highlights on this album;
- ‘Comrades’ by Tunnel Vision is a bit like Joy Division meets Wire
- ‘Always Now’ by Section 25 would be pretty smart in a PiL kinda way if it wasn’t for the dodgy vocals and someone dropping saucepans in the background.
- ‘Love and Glory’ by Sign Language is something of a corker. Can’t pin down what it reminds me of but it nips along at a helluva rate and is strong as fuck
- ‘She’s the one’ by Shrink is a pretty fantastic song, only party spoiled by the fact the singer sounds a tiny bit like Sting but put that out of your mind and enjoy what is a perfect pop song, the backing vocals bouncing off each other are superb
Actually there are loads of great tracks on this album so I’m going to leave it there. This is a fantastic document of a town’s output and every town should have one! What’s more it comes with a zine telling you a bit about each band! I wasn’t sure about the price for this so I emailed JSNTGM and it turns out it’s only a quid!!! You’d be daft as a Bush not to head over to and grab yerself a copy right now!
Andrew Culture

This is a benefit compilation album in aid of the National Association to Protect Children. It’s not your run of the mill FAT release, bar the punkier moments from the likes of NoFx and MxPx, and indeed the metal moments from the likes of Coalesce a lot of this album has some really chilled out stuff. Especially cool is the track by Tim Barry. From the looks of it a lot of the bands have given exclusive tracks (including Anti-Flag), which is pretty smart. In the whole album screams out variety. Dunno why, but I can’t stop giggling when I hear the Falcon singer do his thing!
Andrew Culture

Live : Protest & Survive
Formed in Leamington Spa in 1979. Musically they sound like a poor man’s Discharge. Again popular 1982 thrash with lyrics about war. Features a full set recorded on 26/10/96 at the Norwich Oval. This is quality multi-angle video and audio. Lotsa extras too – clips from Australia, New York etc. DVD ends with their semi-famous clip from the 1983 UK/DK documentary. I was surprised to find I rather liked this one although one thrash band sounds much the same as another. Gimme Discharge circa 1982…..
Graham Culture

This Alltime Low
One of many bands currently pushing out the mainstream sound akin to AFI and about a million others. Some nice riffery on ‘cuts’ only spoilt but someone periodically clearing their throat. Judging from their contact sheet this lot have got their shit together, expect to be hearing more from them soon.
Andrew Culture

Uniting the Elements
This has to be the hardest working band in the world, I first came across them when they sent a cd and press pack to the Steamboat here in Ipswich. Their mind boggling list of live dates became quite a talking point in the pub, they have played more than any other band I think I’ve ever seen. Their sound is sort of 80s power pop, the vocals are more than a little T’Pau with some Cyndy Lauper cuteness thrown in. They have that whole polished production boingy bass synth strings going on. One point of interest though, they rang me to ask if I’d reviewed them yet when I was in bed with a hangover, you can imagine how happy that made me, especially as singer Dawn hacked and coughed at me as soon as I picked up the phone, I still don’t know how they got my home number, I also make it clear in my review policy that I don’t like being bugged for reviews. Take note people, I know it’s standard practise for all budding bands, but I ain’t the NME so please leave it out!
Andrew Culture

Vice Squad
The Very Best Of
Okay, another big UK 1982 punk band. I thought Vice Squad were one of the best at the time but it appears that rose-tinted specs might have been involved! Well, maybe not that bad… Vice Squad hailed from Bristol and featured the rather portly punk pin-up Beki Bondage on vocals. She left in ’83 and was replaced by a not quite so tubby Lia. The music is generally mid-paced melodic punk. Best Vice Squad output by far was Stand Strong Stand Proud LP (there’s 7 tracks on here from it), a handful of good singles (Last Rockers, Resurrection & Citizen – also on here) and not a lot else! Vice Squads biggest handicap was the production and the Lia era stuff is just crap, no matter what the sleeve notes say. So in all there’s about 12 out of 24 tracks that are any good. My recommendation? If you can find Stand Strong on CD then buy it, if not this’ll do (if you don’t mind half the songs being crap!)
Graham Culture

Vice Squad
Last Rockers, The Vice Squad Story
The DVD isn’t as good as the CD! Ya see the trouble with ’82 Punk footage is no fucker filmed it and when they did it was always one camera being wobbled in the crowd. So the gig footage featured here is only really for obsessed Vice Squad fans. The documentary is OK but one punk bands story is much the same as another (We signed, we sold, we didn’t sell, band folded). Partial gigs featured are Cardiff Top Rank, 100 club, Preston Warehouse and Bristol Granary.
Graham Culture

Know Yourself!
Second long player from these local heroes. The bass slams around like the string are about to leap off and round your throat. They sound very much like tightened up and better produced version of The Stupids, but not as snotty. The artwork for this album is really smart, it’s bloody loads of people making the victory sign on it, even our kid Steve from Best Badges! I wonder if that works on the same principal as Pantomimes: cram as many people on the cover as you can and they’ll all buy a copy! All 15 tracks hammer along at a million miles an hour pretty effectively. Gotta say that like another local export Miss Black America, I just don’t get it, bugger, guess what I’ve just seen in my review pile.
Andrew Culture

Know Yourself!
what can I say about this? these guys write songs that are hard, fast, intelligent, and as passionate as anything you'll ever hear. it's fast as shit right from the word go and doesn't really let up the whole way through the album, not that you'd want it to..... I don't see black or white (I see grey) has an awesome tuneful breakdown and stands out because of it, but it's all good and while they rarely change pace it never gets boring. there are plenty of insightful lyrics in the songs as well, the volunteers have a way of making the most bold, poignant personal statements in a way that's simple and comes across in a really strong way. the production on the cd is better than the last one (doesn't make you punk) but is still raw, energetic and live sounding. buy the cd, learn the songs, go see them live and join in, it's the best way to experience these guys.

Western Addiction
Apparently this log all work in the Fat Wreck office, from the sounds of this album that’s got fuck all to do with them getting signed. This is flat out, no bollocks shouty hardcore. The songs are hella punchy and you know what you’re getting, good music with no bollocks, Fuck knows who they sound like, what do I know about hardcore, tee hee.
Andrew Culture

Western Addiction
These dudes sound pissed off, they play pretty heavy punk rock in a kind of old school fairly basic way. don't get me wrong, this isn't dumb, drunk punk rock, the lyrics are well crafted, thoughtful and sceptical, musically it's 100% unoriginal but you get the impression these guys never set out to
realign any musical boundaries. fat wreck seem to be signing a lot of dirtier sounding bands as of late, moving away from the whole skate punk thing and these guys definitely fall in line with that. the songs are pretty good if you like that sort of thing, I expect they go off live in front of the right crowd but unless you own a pair of doc martens, a mowhawk and a leather jacket you're probably best off staying away.

Western Addiction
Another blinding FAT WRECK release. ‘Cognicide’ is the first full length album released By Western Addiction, Fat wrecks own workers band. And is yet another good example of DIY punk rock in the style of ‘Who gives a fuck what people think we just want to make music’.
And this is exactly how is comes across. The album is raw, aggressive and in your face, with destructive guitar riffs and in depth lyrics the 21 minute 12 track album flies by quickly. Songs under 3 minutes, most just over 1 minute and each song is as fast tempos as the others.
The standout tracks are ‘Mailer, Meet Jim’ which is addictively catchy and songs like ‘The church of black flag’ and the opener ‘Charged words’. The lyrics are deep and the bass line has an edge to it. Its awesome stuff.
‘Cognicide’ is so raw is great to see a band who don’t care about polishing it to sound something its not. ‘A poor recipe for civic cohesion’ is an example of how this is so true, screaming vocals that rip through your ears. ‘Matron of the Canals’ is also a great song that is in vein of this style.
Overall this album is a stunning example of hardcore music at its best. It may not be long, so make sure you listen well, or you may miss it. Make sure you look out for these guys, sure to be selling out a venue near you soon. Fucking ace stuff.
Iain Griffiths

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