Naw Dude, Flesh Lights, Marmalakes, the Sour Notes, Hüsky Düdes, American Sharks, Spray Paint, The French Inhales, Bottle Service, The Freddie Steady 5
7 & 7 Is
Reviewed by Raoul Hernandez, Fri., Feb. 17, 2012
Naw Dude/Flesh Lights(12XU)
Florida trio Freestone stormed the left coast in 1978 with its satiric punk-rock sneer, "Bummer Bitch." Local Casual Victim Pile vets Naw Dude and Flesh Lights each take a stab at the hilarious old ho, the former act hardening the song's arteries via a submarine dirge as Doug Hart coughs syrup between the anguished cries of the fucked-over. Strangled gurgles plus a final hardcore brevity complete Dude's triptych. Flesh Lights pull a Ramones/Runaways rip-chord on its turn at the tune, drummer Elissa Ussery shrieking, "Suck my dick, eat my ass, lick my balls" in an ultimate demonstration of hair-raising. "Waves" laps a modestly perfect and appropriately mid-Seventies proto-punk-pop nugget. Bummer, my eye.
Marmalakes/the Sour Notes"White Height"/"Two Hands Wait" (No Play)
Another split, this white vinyl prompted last week's raucous release party at Mohawk, which was a raging success for these two young Austin indie bands. Pop-power trio Marmalakes bashes out its slow, sultry "White Height" in some alt.universe meeting of Ben Kweller's Radish and the Punch Brothers' Chris Thile, while the Sour Notes get brassy on a Fountain of Wayne-like goose bump cruise. Jared Boulanger needs to cut loose at the crescendo of this otherwise tease to the group's upcoming full-length.
Hüsky Düdes(Bombay Cove Records)
More creamy white vinyl, here grooved with five affronts from these local Hüdüs bashing out hairy man rock and Neanderthal punk – big, sloppy, loud. B-side opener "Destroy My Kind" gets its rev on with a crude, meth-head chant, while equally blunt follow-ups "Gotta" and "Cuidado" ("I told you, 'Watch out!'") finish this right thumping and black eye.
American SharksWeedwizard (Pau Wau Records)
Seventies rock and punk with a metallic 1990s sheen, which these locals' H-town homey Chris Gray once and rightfully likened to Supersuckers and New Bomb Turks. Better yet, Mike Hardin snaps a much deeper, knee-deep-in-blooze Danzig/Gary Floyd growl. California desert rock meets Texan grand slam ("XVI"), with gunning B-side "Indian Man" crossing Blackfoot and Priest. (In-store at Trailer Space Records, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 7pm.)
Spray Paint(S.S. Records)
Bearded Lady printer and When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth beard Cory Plump calls this new endeavor "basically Dinos Jr. We share three members." A three-track splat for this Sacramento, Calif., imprint, its perpetually compelling Dinosaur din opens herein with "Pro Knife," Talking Heads playing homemade instruments – detuned. "Squaw" tears flat-out Ministry in a Jesus-built hot rod, and B-side "Psychic Doug" clangs old-school Trance Syndicate psychosis. Ace vandalism.
The French Inhales/Bottle Service(CQ Records)
This pink-vinyl split stars another top Mike Vasquez production in Casual Victim Pile II alums the French Inhales' "Small Amongst Giants" and "Bored and Lonely." A pleasingly UK/U.S. post-punk tension knits all instrumentation: jungle drums, unlimited-bandwidth bass, refracting and pinpoint guitars, topped by vox ranging from Smiths-ian to wild Walkman Hamilton Leithauser. Spot-on. Self-proclaimed beer rock from Bottle Service thrashes out a typically no-fi Beerland bash with a through line of organ-ribbed keyboards giving it all a vintage 1950s feralness ("Cat Food Texting"). Another round, please.
The Freddie Steady 5"1000 Miles" (SteadyBoy Records)
Finally, someone who remembers singles from their Sixties incarnation: Freddie Krc pops out anemic Buddy Holly garage rock on this four-song 45. It's better when Krc co-writes with protégé Jenny Wolfe ("Twisted Smile"), but mostly Roky Erickson's frequent bandleader needs a bit of the "Two Headed Dog" bite in the delivery department. The CD counterpart adds two tunes that might have saved the vinyl, particularly given the wild Rusty Wier psych cover "Crackin' Up."