Sounds Like: Op Ivy, Abolitionist, Classics Of Love, Suicide Machines, Mustard Plug, and Street Light Manifesto
Jerkswitch recently released a brand new track for “Poking The Blind”. I am beyond excited to see them return to the music scene. If you love these guys as much as we do. Check out our interview with them below.
Favorite Tracks: About A Punk (This track is from the album, “BUFO” and kicks ass)
Sounds Like: Op Ivy, Abolitionist, Classics Of Love, Suicide Machines, Mustard Plug, and Street Light Manifesto
Jerkswitch is back again the #CPRAMUSICNEWS headlines with a new video from their track, ‘About A Punk’. This writer is so excited to see new and exciting things from Jerkswitch. I voted their last album, “BUFO” as my favorite release from 2019. The band formerly know as The Skudfux is back together again. They have also hinted via Facebook they are going into the studio!
Favorite Tracks: Be OK, Far From Loving, Do It Right, Alone, For A Day, That Style
Sounds Like: Five Iron Frenzy, Madaline, Holophonics, Mad Caddies, Bad Brains, Transplants, Rancid, Last Reel Hero and MU330
What do you do when you find a band and absolutely love them? You share them everywhere you can! So back in October 2019 the cool dudes in No Authority sent me their new EP, “This Is Your Time”. They mentioned they would be dropping 2019, but not until their EP release party in November. So for the last 2 months I’ve scoured the internet hoping to see the EP had been dropped to the major music streamers.
I have to admit not being able to share kick ass music with the rest of the world was super hard. Today I get to introduce, or shall I say reintroduce German Ska punks, No Authority! The band has been doing the dog since the 1990’s. How did I not know this band already? Be sure to read my article, “Pick It Up Ska In The 90s” for more historical information on ska punk. Don’t forget to hit the Ska Parade 30th Anniversary Show as well!
From the first day I received the CD from No Authority. “This Is Your Time” has been stuck on repeat. As you can see the EP even landed on CPRA Presents: the Youtube Channel! I approached this EP just like everyone other piece of music we listen to. I admit I tend to be a pessimist when it comes to new music. It’s not that I don’t want to listen, more like I don’t want to hate it. That’s probably the Dad Punk in me coming out.
So imagine me repeating the same tracks over and over again. BTW I think my wife is gonna toss my radio out the window! Haha! Anyhow let’s check out this EP. I have one question for you. How Do You Get To Be Ok? Ya know when life just sucks? When everything around you blows? You put on “Be OK” by No Authority.
The track is upbeat with power horns placed perfectly and well timed. The lyrics will be stuck in your head for days. You will also have something to lift up your spirits. The pick it up is strong with this track. Personally I think this track has huge potential with transatlantic airplay.
The next track “Far From Loving” comes in strong with guitar and horns. The drums are impressive. “You know this is a bad time to fall in love, You know this is RAD, Why don’t you fall in love again”. I’m skanking at my desk just listening to this track. So what have you got to lose by falling in love again? We all have been there at some point, afraid to lose and even more afraid to win.
The next track “Do It Right” reminds me of early Mad Caddies. It’s more on the slower side. The story is gold. Another track I absolutely adore. This is definitely a skanking song! “Alone” is the next song and more on the Northern Soul side. The track is heavier than the others and more on a serious note.
“This is why you feel so alone, This how you want to be, Pretty sad you know, You’re failing life and you give it away.”
“For A Day” follows again with some epic lyrics, fantastic pick it up sound and amazing vocals. I love the repeat of “This Is Your Life”. It’s not your boss, your spouse, or even your kids. It’s YOUR life! Last and certainly not least, “That Style” is next. Something about this song just makes me smile. Maybe it’s the gentle horns, upbeat tempo, or a nerd trying to get some loving like me. This track will make you dance!
In reflection, “This Is Your Life” by No Authority is every ska punk fans dream. This EP is 6 tracks of pure old. In comparison to some of their older albums. This record absolutely kills it! This little record will become one of your favorites in no time. Also they come in a super rad color on vinyl. So pick it up, right now, here, now, http://www.noauthority.de/
Holy Shit its almost 2020 already? Where the hell have I been? Oh that’s right here writing album reviews till the cows come home. Well over 2019, CPRA has accomplished a shit ton. We wrote over 70 news, reviews and concert related items, started our own TV show, and started CPRA Skates! Don’t forget also our team up with AKA Just Miggy and The Kids Are Alright All Ages At Goosetown! On that note don’t miss the next Kids Show with the Potato Pirates on December 15, 2019, 2pm! Check out my Top 5 List of the year below!
Dave Schwantes – guitars, bass, keyboards, tenor sax, bari sax, backing vocals
Dane Erbach – drums
Chris Marcanti – vocals
Margaret Miller – trombone
Andy Miller – trumpet
Emily Erbach – synth
Favorite Tracks: Give Up The Ghost, Bigfoot Beach, and Halloween
Sounds Like: People Corrupting People, Less Than Jake, Five Iron Frenzy, Madaline, Pietasters, and Reel Big Fish
There are 2 things in this world that mean everything to me. One of them is ska! My uncle introduced me to Madness at a young age. I’ve been hooked since. The other thing being Halloween. So what happens when ska and goth combine forces? Skath! Truth be told there’s not really many ska bands out there who can get dark, I mean gothic dark. So allow me to introduce Berkley, CA’s, Grave Danger! The 2nd EP release, ‘Tomb It May Concern’ dropped early this morning!
The EP kicks off with “Give Up The Ghost”. This track is dark with the creepy, “Munster’s” like organ, but so lovable. The horns and anthem like chorus are perfectly timed! Erbach is simply killing it on drums. It’s a love song.
“Well I know I can make you see
How much happier you could be
We could chat with out necromancy
You gotta give up the ghost and get with me!”
The next track is “Bigfoot Beach”. Ok so what if all of our favorite monsters had a kick ass beach party? This ska/surf tune is nothing, but 100% fun! Dave’s work on guitar is admirable. Ok goth’s let’s get dancing under the moonlight and go to sasquatch’s BBQ! “Cemeterrarium” here’s another kick ass song to dance to! I can totally see the Peanuts gang dancing to this, haha! Chris’s vocals are amazing as this song is more on the ska punk side.
“Halloween”, a Misfits cover is the next track. Although the Misfits version is classic. One issue I’ve always held with their version is Danzig’s annunciation. I thought it was “Dead Vets hanging from poles”, until the Misfits released the 1995 Collection with lyrics. The cover is happy, filled with energy, and you can clearly understand the lyrics! Plus the horns add a little extra evil!
The final track is “Undead End Job”. Erbach kills it on yes the Theremin! Now there are not many bands that use a Theremin, of course Denver’s People Corrupting People do. We are sitting in our office chairs as the undead, waiting till the buzzer lets us rejoin the living. The guitar riffs are nuts. The pit may be a little nasty on this track.
Let’s wrap this review up. Occasionally an album sneaks in and we HAVE to review it. Obviously since we are not paid, it’s purely a voluntary choice, speaking of that please consider a donation or a merch purchase! Grave Danger’s, ‘Tomb It May Concern’ is not only a great fit for Halloween, but an EP you should be listening to year round. The horns, pick it up riffs, incredible drums will make you buy all of their tracks! Pick it up NOW, https://gravedangerskath.bandcamp.com/.
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Favorite Tracks: Revolution Part II, Survive, Suicide Mission, Fuck God and Fuck Reality, Fuck No, Manhole To Hell, Drink And Stink, Jake,
Sounds Like: Black Flag, Skudfux, Op Ivy, and Abolitionist
Why start this article off with a clip of High Fidelity? How is Jerkswitch’s “BUFO” even related to “High Fidelity? Let me tell you why. This 16 track debut album is FULL of non-stop fantasic fucking music. Personally when I heard the Skudfux was no more. I was a bit sad as I love them. Sometimes when something ends, it’s because something bigger and better is coming. Skudfux is now Jerkswitch!
This compilation album of old and new songs is a whopper at 16 awesome tracks. Let’s dig in further. “Revolution Part II” kicks off the record. You can listen to part one here. From the start you can feel a more polished sound. This is probably one of my top 5 intros of all time. The hunger, the passion, this is the ultimate set up.
Now my second favorite is actually the second track, “Survive” from the “FERN” EP. This is some hardcore ska punk. The lead singer has an almost Jello like tone. It’s just shy of being a little to metal, as the ska punk element is beautifully retained. The pit will be dangerous on this track. “Suicide Mission” is up next. It starts out with a heavy bass line before exploding into nonstop pogo madness.
“Fuck God And Fuck Reality” is up next. I absolutely love this track. From the opening guitar strum and drums straight into the heart pumping power chords. How long we will sit by and allow the church and/or Republican Party to dictate moral policy to us? The Catholic Church has died in popularity here in the states. A new and evil Republican church took over. Check out the lyrics below!
“I never was one to believe,
What I could not see,
All them catholic fairytales,
Keep em away from me,
And I don’t like what I see,
They don’t like what I am,
I’ll stand proud and say,
Fuck God and fuck reality”
These lyrics are so simple, yet so spot on to this writer. The swath of southern states passing women’s reproductive rights restrictions proves to us that the church is more concerned about social control and less about society as a whole. Let’s move onto the next song, “Better Days”. This song is providing hope for the hopeless with awesome lyrics and sweet guitar riffs. “AlertA” is next with an instrumental tune.
“Fuck No” is another song from the FERN Ep. This track cracks me up every time I listen. How many times a day do you say Fuck No? This is yet another great song. The anthems and whoas are perfectly timed. It is very catchy. “O Negative” comes up next with more of ska kickass Squirrel Nut Zippers sound, yet gets harder with the progression. This band is insanely talented.
Drown” starts out slow and serious note. I hear maybe some grunge influences, maybe even a bit of some surf punk. “Drink And Stink” comes roaring in with a fast skate punk sound. Advance warning before joining the pit on this track, it’s gonna be rough. I love this song! “Jake” another track from FERN is next up. Jerkswitch goes back to its roots with a great skapunk sound.
“Manhole To Hell”, is another energetic song along the lines of skatepunk. This is for anybody who has ever been oppressed by another. This song is full of anger, passion, and some amazing drum work. This song has to kill the lead singer’s voice. “All By Myself” slows down upon intro and build into circle pit loving madness. With the steely sound, guitar solos, this reminds me a lot of Faith No More.
Jerkswitch goes acoustic next with, “I’m So Sorry”. The composition of this track is beautiful. I think that’s a cello in the background. Wait this is punk. There are no cellos in punk. I kid of course. Again full blown talent and rightly displayed on this track. “About A Punk” speeds the pace back up with some skapunk. I adore this track. Not only is it skankable, the lyrical content is fucking amazing.
Anyone who has ever been in local band, worked with locals, can relate to this track. We all ask or friends and coworkers to come to our shows and they don’t. We ask them to share our albums, facebook posts and they don’t. It’s up to us as bands, promoters, and fans to help support the punk scene in any way we can. This track has serious potential for doing very well.
Here we are at the last track, “Richmond Hill” this is beautiful outro instrumental track. I have to admit I’m not a huge fan of anything instrumental. In this particular album though the instrumentals blend like threads of a book binding. So there we have it. Jerkswitch’s debut album, “BUFO” is the definition of a perfect album. This record will appeal to not only fans of punk, but other genres as well. I personally cannot wait for more music from Jerkswitch!
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Benjamin Feliciano – Lead Vocals
Jeff Giles – Guitar
Ethan Harris – Tenor Trombone, Bass Trombone, Bass Trumpet
James McPherson – Tenor Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone, Vocals
Bryce Patton – Bass Guitar
Matt Sanchez – Trombone
Solomon Smith – Guitar
Nicole Swan – Trumpet
Caleb Williams – Drums, Vocals
Favorite Tracks: Happiest Nihilist, In Our Genes, You’re A Weak Anarchist Perry
Sounds Like: Streetlight Manifesto, Sorry Sweetheart, Less Than Jake, Mighty Mighty Bosstones
A couple weeks back Denver’s Younger Than Neil announced they were releasing a brand-new full length album. Here at CPRA we are suckers for all things’ ska. So we had to make sure we got our hands on an early preview. I reviewed their 2018 EP release, “Never Quite Asleep”. As you can tell I fell in love with them immediately.
My only con for the ep was it was just too short. We all know that feeling when you find a great band, but a limited discog. Recording these days can be very expensive. It’s understandable why it may take some time to get a full release. Now we have full album with, “Write New History” and personally I couldn’t be any happier.
The album kicks off with ‘Roger Bravo Leader’. This is the perfect track to start an album off. My foot began tapping along with the beat right away. The drums are pounding, the bass and guitar shreds, while the trumpets help build to a massive crescendo. This is not your father’s ska punk band.
This is one of my favorite bands when it comes to relatable lyrical content. Don’t get me wrong I love a good lyrical scream here and there. Although, I tend enjoy lyrics that are easily discernible.
“The sirens calling though the radio, drowning out all that we thought to know, airwaves like a storm, that filled the sky, this is no requiem, this song is not yet done”
The next track up is, “You’re A Weak Anarchist Perry”. Talk about one of the coolest lyrical intros ever, “Lift your foot from my neck, like an, anchor, cause that ship has sailed”. The pit will be absolutely insane on this song. This song goes from third wave to ska core in what feels like a seamless and kick ass manner. This track is for you when you’re pissed off at the world.
Track three is an addition from “Never Quite Asleep”, and is titled, ‘In Our Genes’. That familiar yet, legendary Younger Than Neil sound is back! I cannot express how much I absolutely love this song!This track has everything I admire about ska punk and the lyrics are so good! For me this song is about not repeating the same mistake our parents and even their parents made. I dare you the reader to listen to this track. If it’s not stuck in your head. I owe you a beer.
“They say that violence is in our genes, point the finger as if they ruined everything, our fathers cursed us with spirits unclean, but it’s only up to us to change our destiny”.
The 4th track is another from “Never Quite Asleep”, ‘Happiest Nihilist’. This is by far my favorite, Younger Than Neil song. From the intro to the very last beat. I play this song daily. The hope in this song, make me smile every time. Don’t be surprised if this ends up on the major airwaves! Every day when I get up like a robot to go to work. In my mind I can only say, “Don’t let, They Live be your story.”
On to Number 5, no not Number 5 from Umbrella Academy. The track is called, ‘Firefight’. Ben and Jeff kill this song on vocals. This song sounds like a marching band on speed! The riffs are hard and raw. The next song up is, ‘Sleepwalk Song’. This was also on “Never Quite Asleep”. If this song doesn’t have you running for the pit. I’m only gonna guess you’re lacking a soul. Haha. Do you remember how I mentioned relatable lyrical content?
“Dragging through the daylight, sweating through my sheets, haven’t been awake for months, but I’m never quite asleep, scheduling the poisons that help maintain my state, there’s nothing left to salvage here, but i’m begging me to stay”
How deep is that shit? Do you schedule your bar nights out? I do haha! The next song up is “Trouble Breathing”. Yet another killer tune. This is ultimate misfits song, and no not the band the Misfits. We don’t care when people make fun of our studs and jackets. We don’t care when they say, “Why is that guys hair pink?” Sometimes you have to stop caring about what other people think, and only think for yourself. I probably completely missed the message on this song, but this it what it means to me.
‘1981’ is next on the track list. The ska core sound rumbles back on this track. This is the unofficial song of the millennial generation. I myself was born in 1978, so I just barely skipped the millennial label. Seriously though people give millennial so much shit for reasons previous generations caused.
‘Up For Air’ is sadly the last track on the album. The trumpets are the stars on this one, right before some kick ass drums chime in. I love this message on this song. It’s about seeking hope, before giving up. At the end the song finishes with an immaculate bass/guitar riffs, with a hopeful send off with the trumpets.
“Please don’t drown what is yet to breathe, tomorrow holds more than the past may seem, I can’t tell you where to go, or what to seek, but I’ll leave the map by your bedside the night before you leave”.
Let’s wrap this one up. Younger Than Neil’s, “Write New History” is the perfect blend of hardcore, punk, and ska wrapped in one delicious package. From the hardcore songs like, “1981”, to the ska punk “Happiest Nihilist” and “In Our Genes” this album is not only my new favorite, but my nomination for CPRA’s 2019 Local Album Of The Year.