New album: Pedico || Murder Hawai’i

Ready for some Ramones & Beach Boys worship? Can’t wait for summer? Listen to Pedico! Pedico are from New York and feature Jake (guitar, vocals), Griff (bass, vocals) and Chris (drums). They roll out lo-fi surfy poppunk’n’roll tunes that are so addictive, I can’t stop playing them. And if you are a Youtube frequenter, they have that Beastie Boys knack for making fun videos as well. [continued below]

New single: Los Pepes || Want You Back​/​Never Get It Right

Los Pepes are one of those bands where you know exactly what you get with each release: well executed sleazy UK powerpop’n’roll that is fast and catchy. I feel kinda bad that none of their releases have made it from my wantlist to my collection. That is about to change, because their latest double A-side single is all hits, zero misses. I am not even going to discuss which song on this single is my favorite. Let’s call it a hell of a draw. The 7″ inch will ship out early May. Don’t miss out on this one, pre-order now through the band or Black Wax Noise Division.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Lisasinson || Perdona Mamá

Lisasinson are a band on the verge of breaking out to a large audience. Don’t take my word for it; my antenna for sensing these things is usually well off. But the hit potential on their mini-LP Perdona Mamá is massive. Lisasinson (Spain) are an easy band to fall for. Their songs are upbeat and catchy, with plenty of group vocals and bubblegum for those who like their punky pop sugary sweet. They have fast pop songs for punk kids (Corazón, Discotea) and midpaced punk songs for indie pop kids (Tú Y Yo). Their videos are fun. And, they make you sing along to words you don’t understand: Volverte Enamoraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrr! That song is about falling in love apparently. Like I said,  it’s easy to fall  for this band.  The nine-song ten-inch LP is available now through Elefant Records.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Proud Parents || At Home With…

There are at least two reasons why the new Proud Parents was on the top of my pile of new releases to check today. One: Proud Parents’ previous record was released on Dirtnap records. I essentially like every band Dirtnap puts out, and that record was a lot of fun. Two: Amos Pitsch (of Tenement and creator of one of my favorite records of the past decade) helped out with recording the record, together with some of his buddys from Dusk – disclaimer: I am interested in anything Amos is involved in.

And what a good way to start this day it is. On At Home With, the garage pop of Proud Parents blossoms as never before. The record has enough jangle, hooks, and catchy choruses to lure in the indie pop crowd, but also sufficient bite to keep the indie punk kids satisfied. I love the spontaneous nature of the record: the songs sound like they were recorded with the full band in one take and the record has the energy of a live show. But then, on closer inspection, you start to notice how well written these songs are, and how the band worked on adding harmonies and other cool elements to maximize their sound. And boy, did they succeed. There are worse places to be than At Home With… Proud Parents, and I can see myself returning to this feel good record often this year. Highly recommended. It’s available on cassette, but I sure hope they do a vinyl release rather sooner than later.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Jackson Reid Briggs & The Heaters || Waiting In A Corner

Melbourne rough and tumble garagerockers Jackson Reid Briggs & The Heaters have been steadily putting out music since 2015. They just released their 5th LP (Waiting In A Corner), but only my first taste of the band. That’s a shame, because this is an excellent record. The band plays garage rock with heavy guitars, a rock-‘n’-roll groove and the intensity of hardcorepunk (not unlike Stiff Richards), albeit at a Hold Steady pace. A pitfall with this type of music can be that the music becomes one giant boring blur of noise, but the bands deftly sidesteps that misstep. Yes, this band is loud, and yes, this band will huff and puff and break down your house. But, there is plenty of melody, variety and cool guitar work to warrant your full attention. For this  short-attention span listener, the band even gets away with two consecutive 5 minute songs in the middle of the album – Eaten Alive and Too Many Ears are simply to good to skip. If you love music that feels authentic, is intense and rocks like crazy, Waiting In A Corners is a treat. Out now through Legless Records (Australia) and next month on Drunken Sailor (UK).

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New compilations: 44 Golden Greats (Worst Idea) || File Under: Mutant Pop (Ramonescore Radio) || Hoarses For Causes (Cprw) || Kat Music For Kat People VI (Bloated Kat)

Fans of old school pop punk and punkrock rejoice! Among this week’s releases are not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4 awesome poppunk compilations! Is this a coordinated effort to return pop punk to the masses? Is it an attempt to make this planet a little better – three of the comps donate proceeds to charity, the fourth makes an explicit statement against shitty behavior like racism, sexism and homophobia. Is it meant to bring some light to a dark and depressed times? Likely, it’s all of the above. Ready to dive into a combined total of 120 pop punk classics? Click on read more to check them out.

New album: Wavevom || 2500

Remember being at live shows and sensing how the a band’s energy jumps over to the crowd, and vice versa? Remember seeing sweaty people pogo and jump on and off each other? If you have trouble recalling those experiences, listen to the new “album” by Aussie garagepoppunks Wavevom. Okay, short-length LP may be a better description for 2500 since its ten songs probably will fit on a 7″. Anyhow, the record offers 10 minutes of escapism with songs that are catchy, fun and full of energy and tailor made for partying with your mates. In the end, 2500 sounds like a celebration of being alive, despite the heavy lyrical content on battling mental health.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Judge Grumble || Overruled!

Judge Grumble are an indierock/indiepunk band from Richmond, Virginia. They recently released their second album, Overruled! It’s the second act in a trilogy of concept albums and it’s quite the trip. Buckle up for an eclectic mix of poppy indiepunk tracks (Shy Guy, Kudos To You), quirky indierock (Literati, Quiltbag), and sketches that are plain weird. I asked the band to explain the origins of their cartoonesque bandname and the spoken word sketches on their record. “Back in high school we had this joke where we would come up with random phrases and call them “indie band names.” I’m not 100% sure but I think Judge Grumble was one of those. Waaaay way back in the first iteration of the band (2012 or so?) the “character” of judge grumble became an inside joke. We’d do the whole voice and improv little skits during practices and stuff. Eventually we decided we wanted to bring some of those skits to life in between the tracks for fun (and also to pad the length).”

Given the variety of songs, and the quirkiness of the sketches and some of the songs, it’s unlikely that you will like every single track on Overruled! But, Judge Grumble have made an album that is definitely worth your time. I particularly like how the band aims to make every song interesting. Listen to the many elements they’ve stuffed in Chewed Out for example. Right before the 5-minute song appears to overstay its welcome, the band introduces a pretty cool group vocal harmony that transitions in a punkrock fade-out. Judge Grumble doesn’t need to be quirky or eclectic to be interesting though. The straightforward indie rock of Braindead is one of my favorite songs on the record. But the song that especially drew me in to Judge Grumble is Weehawken, a throwback to the emo poppunk of the early ’00s with an infectious chorus. The band explains: “On the surface, Weehawken is about a little town on the far north side of new jersey and the ennui of a guy who commutes between there and NYC. But none of us have ever lived in NY or NJ… we just really liked the name—it sounds slangy, like “are you hawkin’? cause we hawkin’.” Somehow Alex turned that wordplay into something more meaningful.” Download Overruled! now on Bandcamp.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: The Missile Studs || With Love From The Missile Studs

Managing expectations is important. So when a band self-describes as “stupid music for stupid people,” and the tagline of their label is “purveyors of low brow music from around the world,” don’t say you weren’t warned. The Missile Studs are a snotty punkrock band from Adelaide, Australia that knows the power of playing songs that are fast, loud and fun. And the power of not taking yourself too seriously – according to the band’s FB page, band members include Beyonce, Ed Sheeran, Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift.

I asked the band about their upcoming record (With Love From The Missile Studs) and how they managed to record it in a pandemic: “We actually recorded it before COVID. It was part of the same sessions as our split with Thee Evil Twin which came out in the middle of last year. Our influences are pretty self evident in our songs, we’re not trying to re-invent rock n roll. We just play a style that is as close as we can get to the stuff we’ve grown up listening to. We’re not smart, we’re not trying to pretend we have some insightful message. We just try to write songs that we’d want to hear. Catchy little ear worms that are fun to play.”

If you haven’t already, that split LP with Thee Evil Twin is worth checking out. The new record includes three songs from that record, including the super catchy Missile Studs Theme song. Anyhow, the new record is a classic case of underpromise and overdeliver. My favorite track, at least for now, is Boredumb, which is a classic ’77 punk nugget. With Love From The Missile Studs will be out on May 7 jointly released by Stamp Out Disco and Dirtyflair Record Company (Australia) and No Front Teeth (UK). You can stream it in full on bandcamp. Meanwhile,The Missile Studs are patiently waiting out the pandemic: “It’s still a bit too uncertain to be able to make any real plans, I’m sure at some point things will get a bit more predictable and then we’ll start working on the next stage of blowing this planet up.”

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Waste Man || One Day It’ll All Be You

I’ve never understood why moody postpunk bands like Protomartyr and Fontaines D.C. are such critics darlings and tend to end up in a lot of AOTY lists. Okay, Fontaines D.C. have some songs I like, but for the most part bands like that are too bleak or too boring for me. Basically, I have trouble connecting with them, which, of course, is a matter of personal taste – or more likely, a lack of complexity in my taste palet. But every now and then, there is a band that manages to pull off moody and complex postpunk in a way that I can fully get behind. Take Waste Man from New Orleans. On their second LP (One Day It’ll All Be You) they take punk and hardcore in new directions without losing any of the thrill of actual punk music.

Waste Man offer tempo variations, edgy bass lines and excellent guitar riffs. They constantly keep you on the tip of your toes with the unpredictability in their songs. It’s a record full of surprises that offers thrills, excitement, and cathartic releases that I often find to be lacking in this kind of music. Album opener The Siren is a good example of the many sides of Waste Man, where danceable postpunk verses and hardcore punk choruses bounce off each other. Run All Night is one of the most catchy songs on the record, which distantly sounds like a mashup between the Stooges and Thin Lizzy. Proofreaders, Singles, And Philosophers is one of the most exciting songs released in 2021, and already is one of my favorites of the year. And then there is album closer Wishful Thinking, in which Waste Man introduce the power rock ballad to the postpunk world. Quite the week for Feel It Records, who simultaneously released that excellent Spread Joy record.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Feel It Records

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