YOUTH ATTACK bundle

Does Mark McCoy age? I see him from time to time, bumping into him in Brooklyn. I see recent pictures of him, the guy doesn’t seem to age. It’s like he’s a vampire of hard-core and provocative macabre art. He always seems to have this glow about him as his head is curiously popped onto his slender vegan frame. I wonder what his nighttime regimen is. I wonder if he uses a mint julep face scrub or mango mulch that he applies just before bed. The man has wonderful skin. It’s amazing to behold. Amongst the passing taxi exhaust clouds, piles of garbage and ketchup splatterings all over on the city streets, I see the soul of suns reflected in his New York City vegan glow. He manages to float above all of that and belch out some of the greatest records both visually and sonically. 

Let’s start with:

Goodbye World • At Deaths Door LP

I was excited to get this a bit more than some of the latter releases when I found out that Aaron Aspinwall (Repos, Death Dedication, The Mushuganas, etc) was going to be doing vocals on this record. Anyone standing in front of Aspinwall when he is fronting for a band will agree that it can be terrifying. You might even fear for your life a bit.  He’s probably one of the kindest people on the planet but when he puts the power of those lungs into the commitment of what he’s doing, the earth splits open. It’s unsettling. The music is bonkers off the wall HC in what you have come to expect from Youth Attack. With a little rock-n-roll riffage buried in the tornado of sound, it strikes me right away that Aaron’s vocal phrasing is thoughtful and adds an interesting and captivating quality to the music. Much of the music of this genre has the singer belting out in 4×4 time directly with the drums but there is a nuance to this that really makes it jump off the turntable. Lyrically this is dark as shit, I mean, like, meconium dark. And it’s sticks to you too, just mike meconium. The cover art is unbelievably haunting which just builds on that this Goodbye World record might actually be soundtrack when you’re at deaths door.  

Vinyl sold out but digital is here!

Mangled State • Pain Incarnate flexi

Youth Attack – I gonna do a Mangled State flexi.

Consumer – Flexi records are super delicate.

Youth Attack – that’s why I’m going to make it hard to get out of the package without possibly damaging it. You’ll have to be gentle. 

Consumer – what’s the cover?

Youth Attack- it will be tucked inside an Origami of buildings falling down and rubble. Be gentle.

Consumer – (blink, blink)

Youth Attack – (gently push his finger against the mouth of consumer) Shhh, be gentle. 

Here’s the thing with flexis and lathe cuts for that matter, you always lose a little bit of sound quality. However, that tends to work for Mangled State. Their wall of aggressive sound comes at you with a consuming force. Imagine driving toward a tunnel and the split second before you realize it’s just a tunnel painted on the side of a mountain, your spine is through your chest. Look, I’m from Michigan and putting a Negative Approach song on your record is the second quickest way to a man’s heart (first way being through the sternum) but, to be honest, it doesn’t help as much as you think it might. And I say that in a good way. My purpose is to convey that this is a standalone tiny flexible masterpiece of noise. Sometimes when a band decides to remake a song of a luminary in the genre, the song is used to make the record familiar to the listener, to give credibility to the record and this exercise is usually a failure wherein the band is instantly shadowed by their predecessor before even being able to start cutting their own path. However, here, the Negative Approach cover just adds to the already brilliant sound that these spry young lads have put down.

Here is a link to the songs on the delicate flexi.

Grinning Death’s Head • Cataclysm 7″ EP

First of all, who is the hunk on the cover in the black jeans standing in the forest hubba hubba? 

This is a dazzling two song ripper. These might be the actual longest songs that McCoy has ever been part of. The first side alone clocks in at nearly 4 1/2 minutes. I mean, gosh, his wrist must’ve been so tired. I bet he had to wear a wrist brace for a week. The song doesn’t feel long and does not lose interest. Yes, of course it dark. Yes, of course it’s creepy.  Right around halfway to two thirds in, a haunting keyboard creeps in the background just to make things a bit more ominous. To be honest, I was listening to this and was compelled to look up the church of Satan. For real, I was. I wanted to find out what the seven fundamental tenants of the satanic church are. And then I remember that I was trying to listen to this record and I went back to listening.  I again found myself looking up things about the origin of Satanism… I’m not sure if there’s any connection but maybe there is.

On the flip we have another 4 1/2 minute plunge into what I am now calling GothCore or HardGoth or HopelessCore or HardSad, still spit-balling names but I’m pretty sure it’s going to be a thing. 

I write this with all honesty, I would really like to see this band live. I’m betting it would be terrifying and transformative. I joke here and there but I’m being honest when I tell you that this is amazing. I’m reminded of Fundamental tenant number five: Beliefs should conform to one’s best scientific understanding of the world. One should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit one’s beliefs.

After hearing this record, I believe in the science and have concluded that we are doomed. 

Here’s a link to the spooky songs on a robot format. 

VEIL II • Negative Space 7″ EP

Dropping a needle on this, I am immediately taken aback by what a powerhouse this band is. I grab the lyric/credit insert and realize this isn’t a band in the traditional sense at all! This is just two best buddies hanging out in their pajamas making some great hardcore music.

The one guy, Matthew, probably called his friend James and said – Hey James I have all these poems that I think would be great songs

The other guy, James, probably, said – Hey Matthew, that’s funny you should call me on the telephone right now because I have all of these songs that need some good poems put on top of them

Almost the same way that a Reese’s peanut butter cup went from an idea in the ether to America’s favorite milk chocolate cup filled with peanut butter snack. The artwork is, as is the usual, stunning and complicated. The full color printing on a transparency of a gruesome eyeball, worms and skull headed spiders gives the sleeve a 3D effect. If you were one of the lucky ones that picked up a test pressing you received a Youth Attack crayon pack and a coloring book of adorable little bears being tormented by horrific demons. These 6 songs are over before they start. I think I’ve flipped this 4 times in a row now and it’s nonstop. Couple quick thoughts about a couple of the standout songs for me. “Veil II” I think is maybe a good Mother’s Day song. I would suggest picking this record up and sitting down with your mom on the second Sunday of May and read along together. Also, in the song “Clarity I” they use the word “bloody” so these two fellas might be English, as in from the UK.

The record is gone, try discogs or grab it here!

The Consequence cassette 

8 blazing late 80s NYHC style tunes that (if they were a little less muddy) would fit perfectly on Where the Wild Things Are or Big City’s One Big Crowd comp. It’s the same program on the flip but that’s great because these first are catchy and leg-bouncing similar to Uppercut, and Raw Deal (Killing Time). My favorite track on here is “You Let Them Win”. The song starts off mid-tempo and then has some group shout out parts and I’m a total sucker for “unity” style vocals. One other thing that sets this apart is the packaging and artwork. The cassette itself is clear with images inside that give the tape a View-Master feel, and the j-card is a booklet with overlapping art. All in all, it’s a very great way to wrap up this glob of McCoy releases. (JD) 

the tape is gone but the songs remain here.

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Justin Dratson: JD MA: Matt Average NW: Nate Wilson

YOUTH ATTACK bundle

YOUTH ATTACK bundle

I first met Marc McCoy when he was working in a hut outside of a TGI Fridays punching holes in coed spring breakers’ punch cards. He ate a lot of steamed vegetables. I think that was around 1999 and he’s since then, as far as I know, he’s continued to put out music/media artsy projects as well as continued to eat bland steamed foods.

Below is a run down of my thoughts on his most recent releases:

Snarling Hate EP

SNARLING HATE • How To Kill EP

This has a nice little head-bobbing groove to it. The first tune, “Takeover”, is a call to arms of sorts to our under appreciated sanitation workers. The chorus repeatedly shouting, “Keep the Streets Clean” over a hooky little melody, I think, proudly reinforces how we tend to overlook some of our truest heroes. The second number, “Asphyxia”, starts with a straightforward bass intro to set the tone. The song quickly turns to reflect the seasonal allergies that many of us tend to go through this time of year. The lyrics “I need, scratch till I bleed” and “the bloom, build yourself up” is clearly about the struggle of man’s imprisonment by pollen, well done and very thoughtful. The title of the E.P., How To Kill, at first seems misleading since it isn’t so much as a manual on how to kill something, but rather an example of how to do something well. As the kids say, “you killed it” meaning you’ve done a terrific job at this thing you’ve tried.

Mangled State EP

MANGLED STATE • Stigma EP

The first thing I noticed was that this record is smaller than other ones. I think this one is around 6 inches versus the standard 7 inches. Really, not even kidding. I bet you’re wondering if the smaller size affects the play? Let’s find out together. There are 5 songs on this little thing and are all straightforward, powerful and aggressive hardcore. It is the no frills quality that I dig about this but what about their lyrics? Let’s dive in. “Stigma” lyrics start off with “believe in your own shit”, so I like the message but not the potty mouth. Song 2, “Scowl”, lyrics kick off with “take back my life, ripped to fucking shreds”. Hmm, there’s that potty mouth again. Let’s look at the song “Price You Pay”, track 3, “Call yourself a man, conceited, self serving fuck”. Well we almost made it through without the gutter words. “Cast Cut”, on the B side has no potty words. However, the final song “Façade” does. In the end, this is a raging 5 song, 6 inch, record that any fan of straightforward, unabashed hardcore will definitely love. Just be warned though, if your mom hears it, she might wash your mouth out with soap.

Arts EP

ARTS • Graveside Summoning EP

Wow, this is spooky. The very first line of the very first song, “Daemonomie”, is “I am in the grip of evil”. Heavy. However, it takes a boyish and sparkling look into the world of fantasy like the Tale of King Arthur. The packaging in remarkable and if you look at the picture I’ve included, I think that the inside of this envelope is Marc McCoy himself doing some cosplay as the Wizard of Greenpoint. This record has equal parts fiery swords, dark and damp chambers, a thing with scales and eyes, celestial crypts and more. I’d say that this Arts release is a very uplifting record that skips down a little boys dream journal. Sure, there is some scary ass metal-death-creepy-dark-core (MDCDC) but it is creative in a way that doesn’t come off as goofy as some of this style often does.

Life Support EP

LIFE SUPPORT • Die Like A Man EP

First off, this is an incredible looking triple gatefold package filled with artwork of wizards and metaphysical healing crystal imagery. However, Life Support band couldn’t be further away from chakra energy points or what your aura color says about your study habits. This is a tornado of sound and hostility and even has a few slow down “mosh- able” parts. This isn’t going to be an awakening for anyone but is most certainly worth checking out and spinning a few times a year. I just wish I knew what they were so angry about.

Combat Force EP

COMBAT FORCE • Never Stray EP

The cover drawing is of a helmeted knight with sword and shield. I have no idea what to expect but I’m enjoying the TSR arc to this batch of Youth Attack releases. I drop the needle and was hit with a the sound of a fun-time-in-a-bar-crowd that breaks cleanly into a catchy guitar rock-n-roll riff with the memorable and sing-able repeating chorus of “never stray, this is the way.” This record has a thuggish and almost pub-rock/Oi feel to it. Don’t get me wrong. This is, as these all are, a hardcore record. This is a bit more mid tempo and even has a “whoa whoa” part in a song. I thought that with the cover that this would be more about slaying dragons and love potions and a path to become a master of beasts. The song “Breached” touches upon an epic battle on a great field. The final song on the 6 song EP weighs heavily and sits clearly on their feelings about people that prey on children and I’m right there with them. If you’re curious as to the direction they’re leaning on that song, the answer is in the title, “Give ‘em the Chair”. This is a great record.

Well, that’s it for this plop of Youth Attack stuffs. (JD)

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Justin Dratson: JD   Nate Wilson: NW   Matt Average: MA

 

Arctic (2018)

Arctic  2018

Director: Joe Penna

Starring:  Mads Mikkelsen

Great Transfer

Amazon Prime

Arctic

Yup, I’m reviewing another current film.  This one was a no brainer for me because Mads Mikkelsen is one of my favorite living and working actors at the moment (second only to the almighty Clint Eastwood).  This film didn’t really have much appeal to me at all, besides it staring Mads Mikkelsen.  That is before I viewed it.  The story is that of your basic survival /rescue flick.  A lone man survives a plane crash in the middle of the Arctic, then sets up a make shift camp in what remains of the airplane’s wreckage.  He has to fight the elements of the extreme cold and figure out a way to survive.  There is barely any dialog at all for most of the film… that is until another crash happens near the camp, and he has a newly injured guest who is unconscious and almost dead.  Mads needs to make decisions if he wants to survive and save the newly found companion.  This was a really cool film that supposedly was shot in Iceland.  

I didn’t know anything about the director until viewing the movie and wondering who he was and if there was anything else he had directed that I could watch.  Penna is from Brazil and apparently started his career in film by having a Youtube channel that had 3 million subscribers.  (NW)

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Nate Wilson: NW  Devon Cahill: DC  Matt Average: MA

THE EYES OF LAURA MARS (1978)

THE EYES OF LAURA MARS (1978)

Director: Irvin Kershner

Starring: Faye Dunaway, Tommy Lee Jones,  Brad Dourif

Viewed On Amazon Prime

Great Transfer

eyesoflaura

Well I was hoping that this was going to be a terrifying movie.  It was indeed a terrifyingly corny movie.  Faye Dunaway plays Laura Mars, a fashion photographer, who for some reason has the ability to see the murders of her friends and colleagues as they are happening in NYC.  A very young Tommy Lee Jones plays a cop who is investigating the slaughters.  The murderer uses a ice pick to the eye to pick off the victims.  Unfortunately its not gruesome, or even scary.  It blows my mind that two years later the director would direct The Empire Strikes Back.  

My buddy Mark told me that apparently John Carpenter was the original writer, and was kicked off of the film.  Apparently he wrote the original screenplay but it underwent heavy rewrites (mainly by (David Zelag Goodman) because they didn’t trust him.  As Mark said “Imagine if he got to make the film he envisioned?”  Mark is probably right.  This predates Halloween.  All he’d done up until then was Dark Star and Assault On Precinct 13.  I can honestly say the best thing about this is a scene where Faye is driving around frantically in a fucking Pacer. A Pacer!! I got a chuckle out of that.  (NW)

PS: The theme song is horrid.  

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Nate Wilson: NW  Devon Cahill: DC  Heath Row: HR  Matt Average: MA

BONNIE AND CLYDE (1967)

BONNIE AND CLYDE (1967)

Director: Arthur Penn

Staring: Faye Dunaway, Warren Beatty, Gene Hackman, Michael Pollard

Viewed On Netflix

Great Transfer

bonnieclyde

I’ve read many books on the subject of Bonnie & Clyde.  Hell, once while I was on tour in Europe (2000 or 2001 with a band I played bass in) I had brought one of those many books on the tour.  We had just finished a gig in a rural part of the Czech Republic and it was very late at night (maybe 1or 2am), I was the driver, and was very tired speeding around trying to find my way to the highway.  Suddenly sirens and lights started flashing, and the police were on us.  I pulled over, and two cops got out of their car and approached both sides of the van.  They could not  speak any English.  I gave them my passport, and they didn’t seem to know how to deal with the situation.  Then one of the cops saw my Bonnie & Clyde book on the dashboard and he just started pointing at the book and repeating… “Bonnie & Clyde”, “Bonnie & Clyde”.  Then he started mimicking machine gun sounds and acted as though he was holding a machine gun.  It was strange but we both laughed, and he waved me along just repeating “Bonnie & Clyde”.  It was surreal.  

I decided to watch this legendary gangster movie after recently watching the Highwaymen on Netflix (a film about the men who finally tracked down and killed Bonnie & Clyde).  

B & C is a true American classic.  It was hard for me to take my eyes off of the film mostly because of what a knockout Faye Dunaway is.  I’m not a fan of Beatty, but he plays a decent Clyde Barrow.  

The film suggests that the two took great pleasure in robbing banks, and living life on the run.  It also obviously romanticizes the story of the duo.  Pretty much every thing I’ve ever read, and watched about them does the same.  Besides the romance in the film there is plenty of gritty violence, and a stab at slapstick.  This film really helped to create or at least make the duo out to be American heroes of the time period.  Banks had become the real enemy.  The violence is pretty awesome for a film that came out in 1967.  Lots of shoot outs and cops being shot up.  Its beautifully filmed, and the shooting locations are a great help to make the viewer see/understand the poverty of the time.  

We all know how this ends, and its extremely bloody and violent. 

Not really into the banjo music score, but hey… nothings perfect.  (NW)

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Nate Wilson: NW  Devon Cahill: DC  Heath Row: HR  Matt Average: MA

 

THUNDERBOLT AND LIGHTFOOT (1974)

THUNDERBOLT AND LIGHTFOOT (1974)

Directed and Written by Michael Cimino

Starring: Clint Eastwood, Jeff Bridges, George Kennedy,  Geoffrey Lewis

Viewed on Netflix, Great transfer

THUNDERbolt

“Drop Your Cocks and reach for your socks”

“Man, I’m going crazy.  That drives me wild.  She just does something to me”

Man this is such a cool 1970’s flick.  Tons of action, cool old cars (car chases), and strange 70’s dark humor.  This is Cimino’s directing debut (he was only 35 when he made this one).  Prior to this he’d only ever written Silent Running and Magnum Force.  

Clint is by far my all-time favorite actor.  His filmography to me is simply incredible.  In this film it seems he’s trying to break his many years of being typecast. 

 This is known to many as a “buddy” movie.  The story is that of ex bank robber (Clint) who mistakenly runs into a petty loser thief (Jeff Bridges).  The two travel with one another through the West and quickly become fond of one another.  After a run in with his ex bank robbing gang (who are after him and a supposed stash of cash) Clint gets the old gang back together (plus the petty thief loser) for one last heist.  Of course things don’t go as planned.  George Kennedy (Red), and Geoffrey Lewis (Goody) are hilariously dumb, and brutal and Kennedy might steal the entire show.  Its easily his best work.  

Jeff Bridges clothes in this are amazingly atrocious.  Watch this now.  (NW)

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NW: Nate Wilson    DC: Devon Cahill   HR: Heath Row   MA: Matt Average

CITY HUNTER Deep Blood 12″

CITY HUNTER – Deep Blood 12″ 45

Youth Attack Records (YA 103)

City Hunter

I’ve been following everything Mark (McCoy) has been doing with Youth Attack Records since the beginning….yup day one, I was there.  For me to see the evolution of his label has been a pretty incredible thing to watch over the years. Its been awesome and makes me proud of an old friend.  I still can’t help but to wonder why, and how he still does it to the degree that he does.  He puts everything he has into the packaging, layout and the sound that many of the YA bands seem to carry. Then right after the record comes out, usually the bands break up.  

At any rate, on to the record review.  When I got this City Hunter 12” I was in awe just by looking at the complete package.  It looks like every single slasher film that I’d stay up late for in the 80’s to watch on USA’s Up All Night.  City Hunter are from from Colorado and feature members of Cadaver DogCivilized, and Creep Stare.  This seems to be a very incestuous scene that have put that region on the HC map.  

When I first put this on my turntable I had sort of the same feeling I had when I first heard Carcass.  I’m not sure why, maybe because its extreme in a way I haven’t been exposed to in a while?  I’m by no means saying these cats are as good as Carcass.  I do however find the band to have some what of a Carcass feel that is mixed in with Void, and then a black metal element in the guitar melodies.  The melodies have me able to hum along with the songs even though the music is so chaotic and rawly tuneless.  The beginning of the song Schizo really had me feeling the Void thing.  Fourteen killer songs that have had me listening to this on multiple occasions.  

Advice…listen kids if you want to get signed to YA you must worship Void.  Its a fucking no brainer!  

Get this City Hunter if you still can, everything about this record is beautifully ugly.  

The song titles…

01. Watching Blood Darken 

02. Living Nightmare 

03. Bind Torture Kill 

04. Beyond Recognition 

05. Crimson Streets 

06. Dark Descent 

07. Open Season 

08. Silhouette of Death 

09. Dying Out 

10. Stab and Repeat 

11. Slow Death 

12. Hollow 

13. Schizo 

14. One By One

(NW)

 

JOHNNY ORO (1966)

JOHNNY ORO (aka Ringo and His Golden Pistol) (1966)

Directed: Sergio Corbucci

Starring: Mark Damon, Valeria Fabrizi, Franco De Rosa, Giulia Rubini

Viewed on Amazon Prime

Transfer quality: Bad

oro

I was excited to watch this movie because its directed by Sergio Corbucci and I just really loved watching Navajo Joe, and The Great Silence.  This though… not good in my opinion, don’t waste your time. The action sucked, the story was boring, the heroes were shitty, and the villain was not scary.  Oh, and the theme song was just not catchy at all.  We all know that a good Western always needs a great theme song.  Sergio blew it on this one.  I watched it on Prime… another bad transfer with terrible dubs.   (NW)

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Nate Wilson: NW  DC: Devon Cahill  HR: Heath Row   MA: Matt Average