Due to size (and money) constraints, a few of the record reviews I wrote for the latest Mongrel Zine (#9) didn't fit in...so here they are. I'm gonna add some notes after some of them, to update the review...plus I added the review of The Fine Print which somehow got missed.
Here's the link to Mongrel Zine, easily Canada's coolest garagepunk fanzine:
With The Lord For Cowards You Will Find No Place LP
Folk Brand 2010
Here we have the second long player from this Toronto combo, and since their last record, they’ve gone from a two piece, to a trio with the addition Sarah K on keyboards, percussion and background vocals to fill out the sound. There’s still lots of rough and tumble primal blues, but some of the songs are sweetened up just a little bit with the addition of the organ, which gives these songs an almost 60’s garage punk vibe at times. Classic, cool and timeless all at the same time, this is one of those records that I’ve played many times and each time, seem to get into a different song. But the highlight for me is the closer, “Workin’ Man’s Soul” where you can feel that 40 hour burden leave your body and mind as this song brings it all together in a gripping climax. And live, this band is nothing short of demonic as they toss in Hasil Adkins numbers along with their originals to let you know where they’re coming from!!!
(I'm still digging the shit outta this record and it easily makes it into my top 10 for 2010! catl did a residency at The Drake in Toronto for most of the summer and are becoming a Toronto band to watch for.)
THE EVIL FARM CHILDREN
Three Orange Whips/Outer Limits Bride 7”
Dad’s Favourite 2010
Ottawa 3 piece greasy rock’n’roll combo that lives up to the expectations of their live show on this little 7” of purplish multi coloured vinyl. A side is a guitar instro that combines surf and Link Wray sensibilities for a catchy little ditty that could have easily come from an obscure late 50’s instrumental compilation, but is actually a self penned number. Flip it over for the hook laden tale of an invisible bride as the background harmony vocals on this one make the song.
THE LIVING DEADBEATS
Demo CD 2010
Hey Girl CD 2010
The Living Deadbeats have been real busy lately, 2 brand new CD releases, plus one of the songs from the second CD, Hey Girl/Liar Liar was picked by Dirty Water Records in the UK as one of their single of the week downloads! Not bad for a fairly new garage punk band from Vancouver who have yet to take the show eastward to the rest of Canada. And since most of you probably haven’t heard The Living Deadbeats yet, they lay down a raw and tasty mix of 60’s garage punk meets late 70’s punk sounds fueled by the over the top vocals of Lindsay. There are some real gems on these 2 CD’s that have been getting a lotta airplay around here. From the Demo CD, the pick hit is Theme Song with its hook laden background vocals while the lead vocals introduce the band over top of a three chord fuzz rumble. In fact most of the Demo CD is in this sonic mode of attack with some mighty fine songwriting. The Hey Girl CD is shorter in length at only 3 songs, and this time my fave cut is Time with its screaming putdown over the fuzz and thump of the rest of the band. And if these 2 CD’s are any indication, The Living Deadbeats should be putting out one heck of a longplayer in the not too distant future!
THE MARVELOUS BEAUHUNKS
Do Not Resuscitate CD 2010
The Marvelous Beauhunks were a Toronto based combo that lasted for a couple of years in the early 90’s and put out one cassette during that time. Now, 20 years later, they’ve decided to release a CD containing their previous recordings with a few live tracks tacked onto the end, and… go out and play live again! Why I missed this band back in the day, I have no idea, but based on this CD it’s time to make up for that oversight as I’m sure these guys will be putting on some amazing shows to make up for the last 20 years!
Soundwise, this is some really cool mod influenced powerpop with a slight early Jam/Who influence that comes out in a few of the songs. There are lots of hooks and background vocals in all of the right places and the songs have that timeless quality about them which makes a great recipe for cool powerpop!
(they've done a reunion show at Mitzi's Sister in Toronto, I'm assuming that it went well...and this one has been really growing on me and sounds like it could have easily been recorded in 2010.)
The Fine Print
Standing Out CD 2010
I actually thought that I had reviewed this one for the latest MZ, but somehow it got overlooked. The Fine Print is a London Ontario based combo that base their sound on the mid 60s' sounds of The Zombies/Kinks and they have the chops to back it up! From the opening drum snaps and minor chord guitar attack, you know you're in for something special on this one, as the twin guitars intermesh precisely and the background harmonies are just so perfect! Made for repeated listens, this one has barely left my CD player and gets played weekly on Radio What Wave as I can't seem to get enough! Which brings up my one complaint, it's too short at only 6 songs. A long player is definitely needed from these guys. And this easily made my top 10 for 2010, no questions asked!
I've only caught these guys live once, as they don't play out very often, but what I saw and heard at that show blew me away! We definitely need some more bands like this in sleepy London Ontario!!