Album Reviews & Music News

Ft Collins Based Bad Desicions Bring That Classic Punk Feel With Their latest Self Titled Release

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Release Date: July 12, 2018

Format: Digital

Label: DIY

Location: Fort Collins, CO

Current Lineup: (Per Facebook)

  • Gus Gonzalez (Gustavo la Douche)–throat
  • David Brack-bass
  • Jason Brack-guitar
  • Beckett Martin- drums
  • John Hunter-guitar.  

EP Lineup: Gus, jason, and beckett, + Rasputin Sane–bass and Damian Schoeneke guitar

Favorite Tracks: Snake, Goin To Jail, She May Not Think, and Please Die Soon

Sounds Like: Bad Brains, Dag Nasty, and Hüsker Dü


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When a band purposefully, spells their name wrong. It makes your brain go what? As a writer I’m watching my spell checker red line almost everything haha! Per vocalist Gus Gonzalez, “Crawling out from under forgotten rocks, Bad Desicions’ humble beginnings began in 2016 when drummer Beckett “Tommy B” Martin (drums) and Gustavo “I’ve been doin this for 30 years” le Douche (vox) met in a dark alley after a back and forth Craigslist conversation.

Neither wanted the other to know where they lived at this point. It took about 6 months to get the ball rolling but roll it did.  With the help of bassist Zeke “el churro” Olguin and Damian “American Blackout” Shoeneke, the band began scaring the crap out of bar patrons from Fort Collins to Denver regularly.

Unfortunately, dealing with both Tommy B and le Douche became too much for the aforementioned “members” (except for Jason “he makes guns” Brack–who had also scared many an IPA drinker with the boys).  After a stint with “el Turbo Jugend” Rasputin Sane (bass), the guys finally got some relief as David “__” Brack (bass) and John “I got fired from Wax Trax” Hunter (guitar) joined the band in its present incarnate.

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With a foot in 80s hardcore and the other in progressive metal, Bad Desicions plays music that may sound familiar but then moves in another, less expected direction.”

That’s a pretty interesting little bio. So kids the story here is pick up an instrument when you’re young so you have a badass story to tell your interviewer! So let’s dig into their latest self titled EP and incorrectly spelled name, Bad Desicions. Personally this record was a very welcomed relief for me. I’m old school and personally tired of the emo based punk stuff. I like my punk, angry, energetic, and raw.

With tracks like “Snake”, “Goin To Jail” and my personal favorite, “She May Not Think”. Bad Desicions latest release spurs the classic punk feeling, with a tiny bit of occasional metal. They are currently working on a record! See them Saturday night at Tennyson’s Tap for CPRA’s Skate Or Die Night. Other bands on the lineup include, Admiral, Unusable Signal, and Modern Goon. You can check out the event page here, https://www.facebook.com/events/938762672984213/.

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Track List Per Bandcamp

1.Snake 02:14
2.Goin To Jail 02:01
3.She May Not Think 02:06
4.Makin a Pipe Bomb 01:50
5.Pompous Hippies 01:48
6.Please Die Soon 01:16

Links:

 

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The Hangup’s Return To The Airwaves With New EP, “No Expectations”

 

Release Date: February 21, 2019

Format: Digital, Physical and Vinyl

Label: Monster Zero

Location: Malmö, Sweden

Current Lineup: (Per Facebook)

  • Ale Hangup – Guitar & Vocals
  • Hugo – Bass & Backing vocals
  • Poffe – Drums
  • Ludvig – Guitar & Backing vocals

Favorite Tracks: Stupid World, Out Of Order, Done With You, and Bigger Brain

Sounds Like: The Queers, Screeching Weasel, and old school Greenday


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Sweden’s The Hangups have released their second EP called, “No Expectations” on Monster Zero Records. We reviewed their first EP here, https://coloradopunkrockarmy.com/2018/10/05/the-hangups-s-t/. I’m still rocking this record 6 months later. Today we get a brand new one!

I’m lucky I grew up during the time when Look Out Records was releasing some of the best punk bands from the 90s. “No Expectations” continues this tradition. One aspect I tend to dislike are outright depressing bands. I mean no disrespect, and we all need those bands at certain times in our lives. For a music reviewer 10 straight tracks of sadness, is seriously very depressing.

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This is why I adore the Hangups. All of their songs put a Joker like smile on my face.

So let’s check out, “No Expectations”. I have to admit I do have high expectations since I loved their last release. “Stupid World” is the first track up and it will get that dopamine moving. The drums are excellent. I’m feeling the throwback effect already. The lead singer’s voice sounds almost exactly like Joe Queer.

“Out of Order” is the second track up. The track is super fast. Grab your best friend and head for the pit. The drums and riffs are the stars of the track. “Done With You” comes up next. This is pure and 100% break up punk. Everyone and anyone can relate to this song. Where was this song when I really needed it? Damn.

“Bigger Brain” is next and this ends this kick ass EP. This would be my second favorite track. The lyrics are addicting with a thumping bass line. Overall The Hangups record, “No Expectations”, should quickly join your collection. This a 4 track record that gives you that youthful, no fecks given feeling. It’s something we all need in order to remain positive in a world full of shite. Grab your board and pick this one up on vinyl today.

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Track List Per Bandcamp

1.Stupid World

2.Out Of Order

3.Done With you

4.Bigger Brain

Links:

The Vanilla Milkshakes – Punching Cows

Band: The Vanilla Milkshakes

Album: “Punching Cows”

Release date: 4/2/2019

 

Band members (per Facebook):

David McGhee – vocals/guitar

Frank Registrato – drums/vocals

JanKarl Haynes – guitar/vocals

Jeff Brink – bass/vocals

Mike King – bass/vocals

 

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The Vanilla Milkshakes

Punching Cows

Release date: 4/2/2019

One of the main reasons I love music is for the perspectives that music can provide. Music relays the tribulations of others so much more completely than writing or other forms of communication, in my opinion. The reason is, when you hear these messages in music, they’re amplified by the intensity and emotion of the instrumentation, and poetically arranged in a way that makes me think more about what the words are saying than what the words are, themselves.

The starkest revelations I’ve gotten from music have come from hip hop and rap. Perhaps because the views and experiences expressed in those genres paint a vastly different picture from the life I’ve known, and caused me to think HARD about some of the things I once believed, how I’ve treated people (unknowingly), and how I’ve had to change in order to help spread this knowledge to others like me, who may have been ignorant of how our thoughts and beliefs affect the lives of other people.

This is the experience I had while listening to “Punching Cows,” by The Vanilla Milkshakes.

The Vanilla Milkshakes are Denver’s only punk band comprised entirely of autistic members; and their music has a lot to say about how they feel on a day to day basis. The songs made me think back about how I talk… about how I act… about how I treat people… about times I’d done things right, and times I’d done things wrong… about how I personally felt, way back on the Elementary School playground, when I was excluded from the frivolity that was shared by everyone else after lunch and during recess or gym class.

A lot of the music is about feeling excluded and left out; or otherwise feeling undeserving, as a result of being left out and excluded. A lot of the music is about the frustration of losing friends.

I’ve been listening to this album for over two weeks now, and I’ve found a lot in my life that I need to atone for; and some things that I need to make right.

This album highlights some of the things I love most about music, as a whole. It’s an incredible album, and I highly recommend it to all who read this.

THIS is why I love this job!

An Italian Band That Sounds Like They Stepped Right Out Of The LA Punk Scene? Breakmatt Fastgyver – “The Light Inside Is Broken But I Still Deliver”

Release Date: March 2, 2018

Format: Digital

Label: DIY

Location: Milano, Italy

Current Lineup: (Per Facebook)

  • Mattia Cattaneo
  • Federico Vegetato
  • Marco Guerrini
  • Gabriele Masulli

Favorite Tracks: To Asuka, We’re A Team, We stick together, My Roommates, The Demons, and Five

Sounds Like: Briggs, Sniper 66, Dirty Work, Street Dogs, Transplants, Zipperz and NOISE


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Italy’s Breakmatt Fastgyver surprised the absolute hell straight out of me. We get 10-15 album review requests a week. Sadly we cannot review all albums submitted as we all work full time jobs in addition to family obligations. So after staring the first track on, “The Light Inside Is Broken But I Still Deliver”. I thought I know I’ve heard these guys before. However, I quickly came to realize that indeed they are brand new to me.
Their sound however is not so much brand new, but an amazing combination of classic, pop, and a bit of skate. The straight guttural style is what really drew me in. Let’s break these tracks down. “To Asuka” is the first track. I’m not sure if this is a love song or about trying to help a friend with depression. Lyrically this song is simply beautiful. The drums and melodic hardcore style keep me hitting the repeat button.

“I need appreciation, I need the whole world to know that I exist.

I want to shout out loud, please look at me!

Don’t tell me it’s pathetic, don’t ever tell I shouldn’t feel like this.

This is what I am, this is how I feel”.

“The Gardens, At Night” is the second song on the track list. The one has a really sweet bass/guitar intro. The lead singer’s vocals remind me a bit of Al Barr. “We’re A Team, We Stick Together” is the next song. This song deals with the pain one feels from either growing up or moving on with life. It has a nostalgia for the simpler times. Did you grow up and forget your dreams?

“But then years go by, we all take our separate ways.

And then we drift apart in time.

Today our scripts read reassuring lines.

Can we really say we’re doing just fine?

Did we grow scared to reveal ourselves?

Is it a consequence of life?”

“We’re A Team, We Stick Together” comes in fast and strong with pure emotion. The drums are killer. That feeling that I’ve heard this song before comes creeping back. I absolutely love it! The hooks are right on point when joining the melody. This is yet another beautifully written song. This is my personal favorite song on the EP.

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Next up is “My Roommates, The Demons”. The bass line on this song is so damn good. It’s haunting, and continues when the drums and guitar join in later. Why is band not traveling the world? So good! “Five” is sadly the last song on the record. This song is the perfect ending to a perfect EP. Personally I would probably avoid the pit myself on this one. It would be insane. This one sounds a lot like something NOISE would write.
It’s time to wrap this one up. CPRA has found yet another undiscovered band that should be touring the world and filling ear holes with joy. Part of me on the other hand is sad. Will I ever get to see Breakmatt Fastgyver live? “The Light Inside Is Broken But I Still Deliver” is a masterpiece EP that you should pick up ASAP! It’s currently Name Your Own Price on bandcamp! Be sure to throw down at least $5.00!

Track List Per Bandcamp

1. To Asuka 02:46
2. The Gardens, At Night 02:39
3. We’re A Team, We Stick Together 03:02
4. My Roommates, The Demons 03:24
5. Five 02:39

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Belgian Pop Punk Boxing Day Creeps Onto to US shores with “Retrospect” EP

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Release Date: December 26th 2018

Format: Digital

Label: Real Ghosts Records

Location: Buggenhout/Belgium

Current Lineup: (Per Facebook)

  •    Kevin Monsieur – Stem
  •    Sven Corvers – Gitaar, Stem
  •    Tijs Lissens – Gitaar
  •    Stijn Van der Jeugd – Bas, Stem
  •    Stijn De Nollin – Drum

Favorite Tracks: Retrospect, Loose Noose, Whisper Like You Mean It and Father’s Day

Sounds Like: Sunset Silhouette, Neck Deep, and Wonder Years


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It’s not often we get some kick ass pop punk from Belgium. In fact, I think this may be our first review ever for a Belgium based band. Boxing Day formed back in 2016 and “Retrospect” is their second release. So let’s check this one out!

The records intros with, ‘Retrospect’. I can already tell I’m gonna dig these guys. This song is lyrically perfect. I’m a bit surprised this one hasn’t landed on the pops. Sadly we all know how the pops work and chances are slim. This song has some real catchy notes. The bass and guitar seems to compete with each other. That’s not a bad thing. It’s pretty impressive. The sound mix on this one is wonderful.

The next track is, “Whisper Like You Mean It”. This one kind of hit me hard. It’s about a relationship ending or sorts. The song is so relatable. The chord progressions are beautifully composed, while the drums key into the emotions. Lyrically the song is catchy, yet powerful.

“Loose Noose”, is the next song up. Pull out that dusty air guitar for this one. I could be completely wrong on this one. I feel like this song is about all of us who don’t fit in with the “Normies”. Those so called normal kids like to pick on us. Sadly driving some to suicide. I love the sense of confidence towards the end to rise above.

“Father’s Day” comes in roaring next. This one is anthem heavy and a bit harder than I expected for a pop punk song. The drums are my favorite part of the track. Kevin’s vocals are excellent.  This reminds a bit of Blink 182’s “Adam’s Song”, yet purely original. I think many of us can relate to this song.

Here comes the last song, “Either Way”. This is probably the slowest track on the record. The melodies are beautiful. There is some immense talent in this band.  I should wrap this up. Boxing Days, “Retrospect” is masterfully composed and breaks the chains of traditional pop punk. Pop punk fans don’t miss out on this one. Be sure to give it a listen here, http://www.realghostrecords.com/products/632580-boxing-day-retrospect-ep.

Tracks:

  1. Retrospect
  2. Whisper like you mean it
  3. Loose Noose
  4. Father’s Day
  5. Either Way

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Edward In Venice To Release, “Empathy” on 4/26/2019 Via Lockjaw Records

Release Date: 4/26/2019

Format: Digital

Release on: Lockjaw Records

Location: Pesaro – Italy

Favorite Tracks: The Deserter, High Tide, Pipe Dream

Sounds Like: AFI,The Used, Strung Out, Flatliners, and A Wilhelm Scream


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The UK’s Lockjaw Records are kicking some major ass when it comes to releasing some great music. We’ve reviewed a bunch of their releases, https://coloradopunkrockarmy.com/category/lockjaw-records/. Not a single release has let us down yet. When I saw Italy’s Edward In Venice dropped a new video. My old man self did a fast fist pump. That’s what we all did before so called dabbing, haha. I got lucky and grabbed a media release as soon as I could.

I have to be honest. I’m new to Edward In Venice. They have over 5K fans on their Facebook page. “I guess you could say, things are pretty serious”. Sorry had to throw in a cheesy Napoleon Dynamite quote there.

Let’s dig into “Empathy”. The record starts out with, “The Deserter”. This song is wicked good. The drums, are fucking nuts! The vocal range both singers meet is admirable. This song is perfect when you need to release some anger on a nonviolent level.

The next track up is, “High Tide”. Throw this one in the, “I need a release bin”. Everything in this song is catchy and relatable. The sheer talent of all on this one is remarkable.  The vocals really shine again on this track.

“Spark The Philly” is full of pure skate punk love. So far this record has made me revisit my youth a bunch of times. It angry, fast, and perfect. I’m betting this or “The Deserter” will be their next video. Then this super odd transitional tune comes in called, “Manolo Riddim”. Ok what happened to my angry punk rock? Don’t fret it comes roaring back with, “Pipe Dream”. This song is super catchy and fun to jam along with.

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“Blue Whale” is the next song up and will easily appeal to fans of the Used or maybe even some MCR, yet less whiny when compared to Gerard Way. Don’t get me wrong I love MCR, but sometimes they make me wanna slap them. The last song is “Vaporeon”. You can feel the energy that everyone puts out on this record as it culminates in a dramatic finale.

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Personally I’m a bit sad this ride is over, yet I think I found myself a new favorite. I’ve also found a new band to add to my, “Fuck Off Playlist”. “Empathy” is definitely getting my recommendation for CPRA’s International EP/LP of the year for 2019. Hit that preorder link here, https://lockjawrecords.co.uk/edward-in-venice-empathy/.

Track List Subject To Change

  1. The Deserter
  2. High Tide
  3. Spark The Philly
  4. Manolo Riddim
  5. Pipe Dream
  6. Blue Whale
  7. Vaporeon

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Dead Neck and Italy’s Action Men team up to release new split, “Defections” on Mudcake Records

Release Date: April 30, 2019                                                             

Format: Digital

Album On: Mudcake Records

Location: UK – Dead Neck

                 Italy – Action Men

Favorite Tracks: Lion, Born To Be High, Showers, Die Tryin’, Bakers Dozen,

Sounds Like: Lillingtons, Strung Out, Propagandhi, Livermores, Proton Packs, and The Followups


In the last few years we have been blessed by the resurgence of the split record. Two bands agree to release one album/comp using 8-10 tracks, sometimes more. Punk in general is no stranger to the split. In fact some of my favorite albums are comps or splits. So it gives me great pleasure to announce Action Men and Dead Neck are teaming up to release their brand-new split called, “Defections”.

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The first 5 tracks come from Italy’s Action Men. My favorites from their inclusion include Born To Be High, Lion and Showers. These songs are packed with fast and heavy hooks. Yet they seem to edge the hardcore without passing that line. All of their songs are relatable on a deep human level. I really enjoy the lead singers vocals from the Action Men.

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The first 5 tracks come from Italy’s Action Men. My favorites from their inclusion include Born To Be High, Lion and Showers. These songs are packed with fast and heavy hooks. Yet they seem to edge the hardcore without passing that line. All of their songs are relatable on a deep human level. I really enjoy the lead singers vocals from the Action Men.

The second set is provided by UK skatepunkers, Dead Neck. They up the speed of the split by 150%. Some of my favorite tracks included are Die Tryin’, Bakers Dozen which is badass, and Blind Into The Dark. Dead Neck kills it on this split! They remind alot of LA’s Shell Corporation

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Dead Neck-ActionMen split

Track List (Subject To Change)

  • Action Men – Lion
  • Action Men – Born To Be High
  • Action Men – C’est Dada
  • Action Men – Showers
  • Action Men – Polite
  • Deadneck – Die Tryin’
  • Deadneck – Bakers Dozen
  • Deadneck – Clatter
  • Deadneck – Seven Shades Of Shit
  • Deadneck – Blind Into The Dark

Links: