Review of Exterminators’ ‘Product of America’ at Modern Vinyl

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A band returning to record material years after the fact isn’t unheard of: the Sloths put out an album on Burger, 50 years after recording their only single, “Makin’ Love,” in 1965, and it’s absolutely fantastic. But for a band to return 40 years later to the material and seemingly be angrier than the majority of most young punks? It’s positively astonishing.
Read the full review at Modern Vinyl. Published 1/23/17

Black Friday Record Store Day roundups

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KC's record shops were a busy delight Friday morning and afternoon. The Black Friday installment of Record Store Day might not inspire the sort of fervent capitalistic enthusiasm of its better-known April counterpart, but this particular cold gray morning seemed to keep people at home drinking coffee a little longer than usual.
Read a round-up of the goings-on at various KC record shops at the Pitch. Published 11/28/16 Music_GrislyHandCREDITPaulAndrews2016.583481b20a62e
With Black Friday just around the corner, we know you’ll find yourself beginning to seek out cool and interesting gifts for friends and family. Rather than buying another iTunes gift card for that stocking stuffer, we suggest you head out to one of the many excellent local record shops to buy an actual physical release from a local act. Whether it’s a benefit album, pop, metal, or lo-fi punk, there should be something for all tastes in this roundup of the latest local releases.
Read a round-up of the best local releases to snag on Black Friday, also at the Pitch. Published 11/22/16

Review of My Chemical Romance’s ‘The Black Parade/Living With Ghosts’ at Modern Vinyl

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While not the reunion so many hoped for when first teased via social media, the 10th anniversary edition of My Chemical Romance’s magnum opus, The Black Parade, is still something to celebrate. Given that the original pressing of the LP fetches rather exorbitant prices, and the 2015 repress is on colored vinyl, being able to get one’s hand on a plain black wax copy for less than $50 is glory enough. Throwing in a bonus LP of demos is just icing on the cake for those of us wanting to spin this on wax.
Read the full review at Modern Vinyl. Published 10/18/16

Premiere of Hipshot Killer’s Too Much Rock single at the Pitch

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For the fifth entry in Too Much Rock's singles series, label head Sid Sowder chose Kansas City's Hipshot Killer to follow the format of original A-side, cover-song B-side. The KC trio has answered with a brilliantly vibrant new song, "All the Hell in the World," which sums up the band's ability to create emotionally powerful music.
Listen to the track and read interviews with TMR's Sid Sowder and HSK's Mike Alexander at the Pitch. Published 10/10/16

Review of the Uncouth’s ‘Jonesey’s War’ at Modern Vinyl

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The Uncouth isn’t streetpunk the way you’ve come to expect. It’s not birthed from years of Dropkick Murphys, nor the latter ‘90s oi that was more akin to old school hardcore. The gang vocals and buzzsaw guitars let Jonesy’s War sound instead like a cross between Cocksparrer and Sham 69. From the opening cut, “Madness on the Streets,” you know what you’re in for: those buzzsaw guitars, razor-throated vocals, and fist-pumping rhythms. I haven’t heard music this angry and sharp since the early days of the Ducky Boys.
Read the full review at Modern Vinyl. Published 9/22/16

Interview with Big Eyes’ Kait Eldridge at Modern Vinyl

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In the six years since the release of their demo 7″, Big Eyes has gone from being a scrappy pop-punk band to being an act whose music really reflects the Cheap Trick song from which they take their name. With the release of their third LP, Stake My Claim, the former trio — now quartet — returns to Don Giovanni Records, and owes just as much to classic rock as it does the punk scene from which the band first came. Hearing the opening dual guitars on the title track, one’s instantly hooked. And while even the band’s first single had songs like “You Ain’t the Only One” aiming for the back of the clubs, Stake My Claim has cuts like “Cheerleader” that blast clear to the rafters of an arena. “Leave This Town” sees frontwoman Kait Eldridge’s voice the clearest and strongest it’s ever been, and if album closer “Alls I Know” doesn’t leave you wanting more, you’re probably dead inside.
Read the full interview at Modern Vinyl. Published 9/20/16

Local Album Reviews & Interviews at the Pitch

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The past few months have yielded some especially strong local releases. The psychedelic rock of Lawrence Psychic Heat, AY-MusiK’s positive hip-hop, the Uncouth’s throwback oi — there’s something new for just about any taste. And five of the acts behind the best such recordings are playing in the area over the next week. Here’s what they have to say.
Read all the reviews and interviews at the Pitch. Published 8/30/16

Review of Ascend/Descend’s ‘Murdock Street’ at Modern Vinyl

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Whereas every other d-beat record I’ve heard sounds like it was recorded inside a trash can, Ascend/Descend’s Murdock Street gains its power from the fact that this is hardcore recorded like high-end black metal: each aspect of the quartet stands out, shining brightly. The separation between everything on Murdock Street sounds streamlined, but by no means is that any kind of “not punk enough” slag on the Boston hardcore band. If anything, it makes everything that much more distinct.
Read the full review at Modern Vinyl. Published 8/24/16

Review of ‘Start Your Own Fucking Show Space’ compilation at Modern Vinyl

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The idea of putting out a triple LP of bands playing live at Brooklyn’s Death By Audio is a pretty great one. But the truly historic thing about Start Your Own Fucking Show Space is it’s filled with performances recorded only during November of last year, their last month of existence. 1 Thankfully, the venue packed that last month with some astonishing performances. While definitely heavy on the lo-fi, fuzzy garage end of the rock ‘n’ roll spectrum — with the likes of Parquet Courts, Ty Segall, and Metz, there’s also furious avant-punk from Downtown Boys, Shellshag and Screaming Females, along with electronic experimentation from Dan Deacon.
Read the complete review at Modern Vinyl. Published 8/19/16

Q&A with Mikey Erg at Modern Vinyl

Ever since the breakup of beloved pop-punk trio the Ergs in 2008, drummer and singer Mikey Erg (né Mike Yannich) has been busy…insanely busy. He’s played drums for nearly every pop-punk act on the East Coast, he’s toured constantly, and all the while he’s been the drummer for the LLC, the house band for Fusion’s The Chris Gethard Show. However, musical output focusing solely on Yannich’s distinctive songwriting has been frustratingly scarce. While he’s been making music pretty constantly, hearing that voice has been limited to less than a handful of singles and splits. That thankfully came to an end with the release of his debut solo LP, Tentative Decisions, on Don Giovanni at the end of June.
Read the complete interview at Modern Vinyl. Published 8/17/16