New: Leather Towel – The Message

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As soon as Leather Towel kick off with their machine gun drum rolls and bulldozer-to-the-skull charge of the guitar on “The Message”, you’re strapped in, Guantanamo Bay-style, for an absolute flaying. It’s urgent punk that barely spills over a minute, but it’ll grate your cheek into the sidewalk for the full 75 seconds. Make sure you wear a helmet and kneepads, that solo at the end will try to kill you.

Leather Towel will be in Sydney this Friday, playing an LP launch at the Marrickville Bowlo with Lumpy and the Dumpers (USA), Oily Boys and Houswives.

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New: ORB – Migration

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ORB served up a sonic enema earlier this year in the form of their debut EP, which you can/must check out here. Pungent Black Sabbath riffs plunging through some very stormy territory. Most excellent.

Since the release of that tape, they’ve pledged their allegiance to Flightless Records, and will be joining King Gizzard and The Merlons on a bunch of tour dates around the country pretty soon. To get the tongues wagging a little harder, ORB have released a new single in ‘Migration’, a thick, evil splattering of B-Movie riff-rock.

If there was any doubt in your mind about the promise of big riffs present in this article, all you need to do is press play. Go on, do it. Have you done it? If you have, your whole being will be quivering, swarmed by the dominating chug that ORB so easily cook up. Your mind and body will progress through this song much in the same way as that can of beer that Bart shakes up to prank Homer; what starts as a mere tremble develops into a giant fucking explosion.

New Aus Punk: Destiny 3000 + Cereal Killer + Woollen Kits + Nailhouse

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Destiny 3000 – Destiny 3000 7″

This record has been on the burner since the second best Fast and Furious movie was released (Furious 6, for those keeping score at home). Destiny 3000 haven’t played all that many shows either in recent history, which is a shame, because they will make your ears bleed and your heart swoon. But putting all of that aside, they have finally released a record, and it is worth all the droning Vin Diesel monologues about family in the world.

This 7″ is just so fantastic in every aspect. Coated in grime, guitars battling for supremacy, and an overall disaffected garage pop aesthetic that puts Destiny 3000 next to Australia’s premiere shredders like Angie, Miss Destiny, and The Friendsters. Although only four songs long, and attached with a mild uncertainty as to if Destiny 3000 will stick around to record anything more (knock on wood), this 7″ will, at the very least, form some sort of legacy for a deserving band.

Cereal Killer – Track 1

Barely nudging past one minute, Cereal Killer put a whole lot of other punk bands to shame in a deft swoop of snotty, thumb-biting vocals and flailing guitars. It’s dine and dash punk, a flurry of distraction action that gets you all exhilarated…”What’s happening?”, “This is great!”, “I hope this song goes on forever!”…before finishing in the same amount of time as a the life cycle of a mayfly with a heroin problem.

Woollen Kits – Girl With Heart 7″

Not really a punk band, but you’re too far through the “article” (and I do mean that in the loosest definition possible) to stop now. C’mon, I believe in you. Besides, you’ll like Woollen Kits, I guarantee it. They’re easily the most underrated band in their genre of strummed guitar pop…how the fuck can a band release two perfect albums and still not be gracing the cover of the New Musical Express with fancy haircuts and a hyperbolic headline*? How are Woollen Kits not best mates with Johnny Depp?

The time will come when Woollen Kits are rubbing shoulders with Hollywood’s sharpest dressed, and botox treatments are referred to as “Lazy Tuesdays with Alan Rickman”. Until then, feel free to crash into some more-of-the-blessed-same pop via the brief but welcome Girl With Heart 7″.

*The irony of me calling out someone on irony is registered.

Nailhouse – Nailhouse

Straight outta Newcastle is some punk of the demonic variety. Nailhouse share a lot in common with FANG and Flipper, preferring to indulge in feedback-laden drones of nihilism than any sort of accessibility scheme. Built from steely glares and throat-crunching cries, Nailhouse climb on top of their own precarious lodgings of noise, only to fling themselves off. It’s music that could only come from a forgotten town like Newcastle, where the cultural cringe is worn on the sleeve. Frayed and loaded with loathing, Nailhouse’s “March” stands out strongly as a despairing track on a despairing tape from a despairing band in a pretty alright city.

Album Review: Wet Blankets – Rise of Wet Blankets

When I was 15/16 years old, you wanna know what I was doing? Jerking off, and begging strangers that seemed the perfect mix of sympathetic and old to buy me and my shitty mates booze. I thought Wavves were edgy, and that taking a girl to Maccas and shouting her lunch was a “pretty good first date”. I knew I was smarter than everyone, and that when I was a millionaire from all that punk music (read: THE NEW NOFX ALBUM) I would take a big ol’ shit on the lawn of everyone who said that I was weird because I listened to “Enter Sandman”. Doncha know that’s fucking metal?

It wouldn’t be until about a year later that I went through the enlightening discovery that there was more to Australian rock music than Powderfinger, but this story ain’t about me. As intriguing as it would be to recount just how many Prodigy CD’s I bought, this reflection of who I was at 16 is less of an attempt to trace everything to the exact point of when I realised how much of a fucking loser I am, and more of a gobsmacked appreciation of Wet Blankets.

Wet Blankets is the project of Zane Gardner, a bloke straight outta Geelong. I refuse to call him a kid, because he’s got his head screwed on better than the majority of fuckwits that run this country. Furthermore, he’s evidently got a damn fine music taste, judging by the way he propels through his debut album. There are touchstones throughout the ‘Rise of Wet Blankets’ that sure as shit put my high school musical obsessions to shame. Whereas most teenagers are happy to numbingly plod along to Disclosure and Selena Gomez, Zane has obviously been thrashing The Reatards, Dead Boys and Cosmic Psychos. Fuck, I would’ve killed to have had the foresight to give those artists a chance and to have sought them out earlier than I did.

‘Rise of Wet Blankets’ doesn’t even stretch for 20 minutes, but the amount of sweat, puke and fuzz that’s loaded in here could kill an unsuspecting high school student faster than synthetic weed and a free period with nothing to do. The guitar solos on here are as deranged as an ‘Nam flashback, the yelling and screaming puts spoiled rich kids to shame, and the dark humour wouldn’t feel out of place in a Bret Easton Ellis novel.

What makes this record so impressive is how organic it feels. Zane mmade one actually?doesn’t shy away from his age, or try to mask it with some sort of bullshit maturity. No, the repulsion for the kind of shit that annoys people under the age is rampant in the record, like hating on school in “Kits”, dealing with dipshits on “Marge is A Wet Blanket” and struggling to sleep on “Fridge Too Far”. You know why you can’t sleep? You’re too fucking loud!

From the first second, to the last, this record is relentless, a no holds barred cage match of ear-bleeding guitar. It’s the perfect record to encapsulate the teenage experience, with all its acne and inability to talk to girls. And what’s more, its music that won’t make you ashamed to have listened to in your pimply years – Wet Blankets is a band that can, and will, be adored at all ages.

New: Housewives/Ausmuteants – Brown Out/I Wanna Sedate You

FUUUUUCK! You read that title correctly! Unworthy scum of the planet, let your eyes blister in awe at the fact that Oz-straya’s two greatest punk bands are teaming up for a 7″ that’ll blow your mind higher than a henchmen facing the wrongend of Schwarznegger’s rocket launcher in the forgotten classic ‘Commando’.

However, both bands have chucked a bit of a sneaky; they’ve released new songs, but the originals are yet to see the light of the Internet. Instead, they wrote a track each, and then sent the lyrics and chords to their counterparts, and told them to cover it. Smart, ya see, because now there’s nothing to go off, and two of the most houndingly creative bands in this fair brown land are free to beat the shit out of each other’s music.

Despite being covers, both Ausmuteants and Housewives respective styles are in full display. The stocky, sharp propulsion of Housewives is in full flight, bumbling shouts dribbling over fisty-cuff inducing guitar squeals. And Ausmuteants have got their Devo-meets-Chrome crossover at its deranged best, yelping lyrics meeting ferocious blackouts of noise.

The final motion of greatness? This 7″ is coming out on renowned label Total Punk, who have one of the best track records when it comes to releasing incredible punk music. Lumpy and the Dumpers, Buck Biloxi & the Fucks, and Golden Pelicans are just a few of the gems you can find on their Soundcloud. If you’re ever crate-digging and see that signature raised fist bearhug isigna, shell out whatever the asking price is, because once we hit the year 2025, these treasures are going to be worth more than H20 on this inevitably scorched Earth.  You know, cause Obama’s gonna hit the nuke button at the end of his term, and destroys us all? When that happens, records like this Hosuewives/Ausmuteants split are what will cool those third degree burns and soften the fact that you are chewing on the bones of your loved ones in the cruel apocalypse.

New: The Living Eyes – High Standards

Geelong aka Rock n Roll City, has bred all sorts of legendary acts, but one of the finer cases is The Living Eyes. Following on from their 2013 debut LP, The Living Eyes have returned with a single that announces a new album, ‘Living Large’.

Announce isn’t the right word – they’re style probably aligns closer with obnoxious lambasting, brash and loud to the point where GG Allin might even recoil. “High Standards” certainly raises the bar to extraordinary levels, and if The Living Eyes can keep their energy levels to the manic heights of the average Ren & Stimpy cartoon, then ‘Living Large’ should be one of the rock n roll releases of 2015.

New: Hierophants – I Don’t Mind

Look, there’s a few things that are pretty goddamn swell about this new one from Hierophants. Firstly, it’s coming out on GONER RECORDS! That’s, like, one of the best fucking labels in the world! They put out Jay Reatard, and it’s owned by one of the guys from The Oblivians. It’s garage rock superstardom, the White House of shitty rock n roll.

Secondly, the release of “I Don’t Mind” comes with the news that Hierophants will be releasing their debut LP! Fuck yes! Fuck 7″s, when you can just go for the whole 12″ shebang.

Finally, it’s just a bloody tune. It’s schizophrenic, mongoloid rock that DEVO would love. Deranged synths, alien drum beats, the kind of rock and roll yelp that only comes from a haunted VHS tape. It’s v. fuckn cool.

Album Review: Ausmuteants – Order of Operation

Here’s the thing – people have got to know about this band. Sure, this is just some shitty personal blog, but if someone happens to stumble across it looking for midget porn, and finds this album, then I’ve done my job as a douchey Internet denizen. There’s almost no way that Ausmuteants won’t become their new favourite band. They’re just too fucking brilliant, visceral and goddamn authentic to be ignored.

For a little more context, Ausmuteants ripped their name off some Brazilian band, and inserted enough haywire, schizophrenic synths and noisy feedback to warrant any original members from Suicide to drop their instruments in despair. Coming outta Geelong, Ausmuteants feature members of Frowning Clouds, The Living Eyes, School Damage, Wet Blankets, and pretty much any band that sounds like it was dragged from a murder scene, kicking and screaming with an insane look in their eye. Their first album was a gonad-punch of noise moulded into pop and splintered with all the fucked up shit that harps society.

Their second record built up those stages, but threw in a few more avant-garde pieces, like “I Pissed Myself Twice”. On “Order of Operation”, Ausmuteants finally sound like they’re a full band, not just a collection of screams and howls projecting the most disparagingly funny lyrics onto musical freakouts resembling Jack Nicholson’s eruptive fate in “The Shining”.

Furthermore, these songs are yelping animalistic eyeball poppers, more so than shoving a lawnmower, followed by a bottle of vinegar up your arsehole. A re-vamped version of “Felix Tried to Kill Himself” is so furious and deranged, you’d swear someone was trying to kill the band members in the middle of the recording, and the only way to defend themselves was to throw as much noisy guitar at this Jason Voorhees as possible. The same situation applies to the escaped mental-ward patients of “1982” and “Boiling Point”, songs which reach bleeding, scarred and fucked-up levels of success far too easily.

There isn’t really a moment on “Order of Operation” when Ausmuteants aren’t at their crude, twitching best. When not writing songs about porn (“Freedom of Information”), there’s stuff like the gutter revelation of “Depersonalisation”, which sounds like Ghandi reaching Nirvana whilst living in a compost heap in St Kilda. There’s a slight change of pace, within “Wrong”, about the plight of being a constant disappointment, but this seems less like a #stylisticdeparture rather than just fitting the pretty fucking depressing theme of the song. However, it does show that Ausmuteants hold onto that little bit of empathy, and they’re not too far gone to edge back into this boring realm of humanity.

Ausmuteants, I mean, these guys are fucking supernatural. They pound and thrash, and ruin any concept of cliche with their sheer ecstasy. Accompanied by a fucked up (read: refreshing) sense of humour, and enough schizophrenic bellowing to send the Primitive Calculators reeling, Ausmuteants align themselves with the too-oft ignored progressive punk of the 70’s, stuff like The Monks, The Residents and The Tubes. Maybe I’m dooming myself here by trying to compare Ausmuteants to something else, but it’s meant to be taken as a compliment, and in regard to their ability to be a crass, hyper-real thing of the lore that has somehow been brought to life before people are probably ready for it. It’s with a strong hope that people can recognise how fucking brilliant this band is, and ensure that they become cult idols before they’re using machines to breath.

New: The Living Eyes – Guilty Pleasures

The fucking ruthless Geelong-ians known as The Living Eyes are back to shred your minds and ambitions to become a better garage band than they are. They’re latest is a track called “Guilty Pleasures”, which re-invents the entire definition of high-octane. If surf rock were catapulted into space without an astronaut helmet, rocketing into the stratosphere at eye-bulging G-Forces, the resulting sonic boom would sound a little like this 2 minute extravaganza. To speak bluntly, this thing is more dangerous than working a buzzsaw without gloves and after a half dozen schooeys.

New: The Frowning Clouds – Move It

Way down in Geelong, there exists a hub of bands that kick unbelievable amounts of ass. The Frowning Clouds are at the premier of that scene, and make rock and roll tunes so sticky you would’ve thought spilled a beer into the recording equipment. Listening to ‘Move It’, with its overwhelming sense of Thee Oh Sees-esque party vibes, you can’t help but want to move your head at a breakneck pace, your neck walloping along like a yo-yo snapping back and forth.

‘Move It’ manages to go through a shitload of phases,each one more jizz-inducing than the next. There’s a triumphant opening riff, that moves sleepy-eyed psych-tinged territory, before…holy shit, is that a kazoo? Whatever point you find yourself at, there’s the kind of wide-eyed wonder that can only be matched by watching Adventure Time on acid.