Hello. Back again with yearly installment of my favorite punk releases for the year 2017. A lot has happened in the passing year: We have a new “president”, millions have marched in protest, England begins it’s exit from the European Union, a US withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, a total solar eclipse, a couple of tragic hurricanes, one of the most deadly domestic mass shootings, US withdrawal from UNSECO, the deaths of numerous celebrities and activists alike, all throughout this tremulous year. With all the terrible things in the world I give condolence. In the end, I fell I have but no choice but to move forward. On a personal level, there were a few things that I am forever grateful for: I have been fortunate enough to travel internationally, I have had the benefit of making a lot of new friends and acquaintances throughout the last twelve months, some of them I would consider close. I have had opportunities to grown mentally as well as physically. I feel that through the tough times, you build the character to enjoy the good times.
Moving forward with the blog, throughout the year I have contributed to my ever growing punk rock record collection. I am quite sad to say that most of the records I have purchased throughout the year have been reissues from classic bands of yesteryear. However, there will always be new and fresh punk releases that will have piques my interests. I would like to share with you the new releases that I’ve purchased that I feel are among the best. Here are those releases:
Glue - self titled 12” - La Vida Es Un Mus Discos
Austin TX hardcore unit Glue are back with this 12” of 9 tracks that keep a tried and true 80’s hardcore feel through and through as far as song structure and attitude. The lyrics are angry and bubbling towards and inward perspective. Not much else to say here, but a solid old style USHC release with some flairs of modern HC like the reverb vocals and noise intros. These guys have been at it for a good while now, and I’d really like to see live to see how they do it. Not too into the album art.
Lebenden Toten - Static 12” - Iron Lung Records
These Portland pogo noise rockers are back with a 12” ep that has a mid-paced noisy track that has plenty of room for experimentation. However, the flipside brings Lebenden Toten up to speed into a style than I am more familiar with and enjoy more than on the A side. Overall, it’s a good release with kind of a “fuck you” feel with it’s experimentation. This is something that I feel is needed in a time where underground punk sounds can feel a bit stagnant. Lyrics are of the abstract nature, with the well known vocal delivery. Lebenden Toten have also released a full length LP this year, but I haven’t had the chance to check it out yet. As a long time fan of the band, I will acquire the record in the near future.
Pollen - Fear Of Another War 7" - Brain Solvent Propaganda
While familiar with the label, I was really in the dark with this band, until a friend turned me unto Pollen. This Philadelphia band released their seconds 7” this yeah and end the end I must ask you this; Do you like noise punk in the Scandi/Japanese tradition? Well this is the record for you. What really does it for me on this release isn’t the non-stop barrage of speed of fuzz, but it’s the timing in which the over the top noise punches in are delivered throughout their songs. I need in get my ass in gear and check out their previous material. Songs about anti-war? Yes please. My favorite punk release of the year.
Moving forward into 2018, I can only hope that the national, geopolitical, natural landscape, and personal affairs will improve for the better. With focus and determination anything is possible. This year personally I am grateful for everything positive in my personal life within in these past twelve months. Life always has the good with the bad. I'm excited to see what releases will pop up in the year to come. Peace!