Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Music Reviews from the Void...
Two quick reviews of a couple of joints I found while doing the daily dig in my dusty music vaults... 
Society’s Victim’s
Sanctuary Records

Oh you’re a punk? Are you a “thrash head”? Into Grind-Core are you? Well, if you don’t own anything by Discharge you’re not legit and are a fucking full of shit poser. Discharge set off a lot of shit in the game. If the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction candidate committee had any fucking knowledge of real rock and roll they would induct Discharge. Let’s outline why: 

1) Discharge took the punk sound of its day and hardened it up, thus the birth of hardcore from its punk roots. Yes, I will say that Discharge was probably one of the first couple of hardcore bands ever. 
2) Discharge in part influenced many of the bands of the New Wave of British Metal era therefore making way for the birth of Thrash Metal. In essence, Discharge helped create Thrash. 
3) Along with bands like Amebix, Extreme Noise Terror, HellBastard and Chaos UK, Discharge was crucial in fathering the crust-punk genre. 
4) Discharge is very regularly given mention as being one of the progenitors of Grind Core. 5) Discharge spawned (and is the namesake of) an entire sub-genre called D-Beat. 

Should I continue? Don’t you think that they have quite a few credentials under their bullet belts and deserve a slot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? This 3 disc anthology has everything this band has ever put out, and almost all of it is fucking gold! You get the Realities of War, Fight Back and Decontrol EP’s from 1980, the Why? Album and the Never Again EP from ’81, the Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing album from ’82. You get all of the crusty, D-Beat Grind-punk goodness that characterizes this UK Anarcho-punk powerhouse. You even get the one fucking awful record they did called Grave New World, the worst piece of shit I’ve ever heard. Even Faster Pussycat is better than that shit. Reminds me of some horrible hair metal shit like KIX or NITRO! Still good for a few shits and giggles. And besides, if you have had the impact this band has had on extreme music, you can get away with one whack fucking record. Believe me, the whack-ness of Grave New World does not come close to overshadowing the rest of Discharge’s collective body of work. Get this or lose the fucking Mohawk, cause you obviously still haven’t earned it, you bloody wanker! Go bugger off then!
Christian Death
Only Theatre of Pain
Frontier Records
 Avant Garde and creepy as fuck! That’s how I describe this crucial 1982 debut album by this L.A. death punk band! This album is an important record in any respectable Punk record collection because it inspired a sub-genre which came to be known as Death Rock, or Death Punk, making them the one of the fore-fathers of Gothic rock. Christian Death were the first to experiment with the style (though some may argue that The Flesheaters and Kommunity FK were already doing the death rock bit in ’79)  and then came other bands like .45 GRAVE and SEX GANG CHILDREN (by the way, Sex Gang' really blows) to name a few. What happens when you take a deeply disturbed, sexually ambivalent youth and force him into a Christian upbringing? You get Rozz Williams! There are very few records that truly give me the creeps, this one is among the front runners in that race. I was introduced to this band by one of the little chicks that I used to run with in my church school ghoul crew. The record opens up with the eerie clanging of church bells, heralding the open of a perverse service. Rozz William’s lyrics on this album are so disturbing on many different levels. At times his lyrics are so conceptually abstract that much of the subject matter borders on nonsensical, but he undeniably paints twisted pictures that leave shock-impressions. Motif is everything within this genre and Rozz can conjure a ghostly fucking scene. Referencing every possible topic from the occult, to Judeo-Christian religion, sadomasochism, nihilism, necrophilia, homo-eroticism, and even some risque allusions to racism. The lyrical desecration of Christian themes and symbols is definitely Rozz's strong-suit (there's a whole lot of shenanigans in this joint, believe me). At one point he references the "untouched ass of the boy next door" and if not for my firm security in my own sexuality, I would have felt a bit uncomfortable. Rozz’s whiny necro-moan voice is an acquired taste but it totally adds to the atmosphere of the record. His vocals echo a sinister and malevolent hyper-sexuality which works well with the vibe that his lyrics conjure. Musically, Christian Death is at root a punk band. Adolescents’ guitarist Rikk Agnew plays on this cult record, giving it automatic L.A. punk credibility. But there are other layers present that give this record its particularity. Mainly, it’s the evil overtones of the songs. Asides from the aesthetics, the actual playing was unlike anything else at the time. The guitars are so dissonant and driving! Listen to the bass lines on this thing, sounds like a Fret-less to me! In many ways, this was already post-punk when punk was still alive and kicking. Like I said, very few bands scare me but this album damn near made me lose sleep the first times I heard it. Rozz Williams was by far the world’s scariest bi-sexual. Those Christians man- They’ll fuck your shit up! Look at how warped I am! And I only did about a year and change within church school hell...
And as for Rozz, the crazy depressed half-a-sissy committed suicide by hanging himself back in 1998. I wouldn’t recommend too many albums from the Christian Death catalog but this is a Punk Rock essential. Beware! There is actually two different versions of Christian Death, one being with a singer named Valor. Do not get any Christian Death albums with Valor, they blow! It’s just bullshit neo-romantic new wave crap! Get this record for your Halloween Party, I guarantee you’ll dig it. The CD version contains the first EP DEATHWISH. My suggestion is to try and get it used on Amazon or try to download it from a blog spot. Trust me, get this and then bang a chick while playing this record, it's a serious mood enhancer... if you're on the giving end of the sexual torture.

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