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  ...presents...                  cDc core #7
                             original music reviews      by The Pusher

                      >>> a cDc publication.......1991 <<<
                        -cDc- CULT OF THE DEAD COW -cDc-

JELLO BIAFRA WITH NO MEANS NO: The Sky Is Falling And I Want My Mommy
(Alternative Tentacles)

     It took a while, but Jello Biafra's post-DEAD KENNEDYS career is really
moving.  There's LARD, a collaboration with MINISTRY, an album with D.O.A., the
TUMOR CIRCUS 7" with KING SNAKE ROOST, the spoken word DIE FOR OIL 7", and now
an album with Canada's NO MEANS NO.  There're 8 songs here, half are straight
forward thrashers in the old DK style, and the other half are in the warped
jazz-punk No Means No style.  As usual, Jello's lyrics are both witty and
informative.  The one fault with this is that the songs either sound like Jello
Biafra songs or No Means No songs, they don't sound like Jello Biafra WITH No
Means No songs.  Whatever.  You can't go wrong with this.

BURN 7" (Revelation)

     Debut 7" from one of the best new NYHC bands.  These guys obviously like
the first CRO-MAGS album a lot, but by no means is Burn generic hardcore.  Most
hardcore bands have mosh parts, but Burn has JAZZ parts!  Still, these jazz
breaks are very danceable.  There are no ripping guitar solos, but guitarist
Gavin Van Vlack throws in a bunch of guitar subtleties to keep things
interesting.  The bass playing is exceptional, almost like a lead instrument at
times.  The emotional vocals are more singing than screaming.  I hate the way
the drums sound, very artificial sounding.  Once again, another Revelation band
surprises everyone with some originality.

CARCASS: Symphonies of Sickness (Combat/Earache)

     It looks like that the next sub-genre of hardcore to get big is
"grindcore".  (See SPIN June '91 for more information).  The big grindcore
record label is Earache Records, based in England.  Combat Records is
re-releasing a bunch of Earache stuff here in the States.  Personally, I don't
like any sort of speed/death/thrash metal, so I don't see why grindcore should
be any different.  I saw this Carcass album, however, and with song titles like
"Cadaveric Incubator of Endoparasites," "Embryonic Necropsy and Devourment,"
and "Excoriating Abdominal Emanation," how could I not check this out?  It's
H-E-A-V-Y, hyper-fast in some parts, and the vocals sound like inhuman monsters
with constipation.  The lyrics are pretty explicit.  "Renal ulcerations, faecal
gurgitations.  Costive crepitations, complete anal disgorgement."  These guys
must be medical students or something.  Ok, if taken in small doses.

FISHBONE: The Reality of My Surroundings (Columbia)

     The 'Bone return with their 4th LP.  If they don't make it big with this
one, then they never will.  This is probably their best album, even if you have
to do a lot of skipping around with the CD player.  The songs number 18 on this
album, but almost half are filler.  Four songs (all called "If I Were A... I'd)
are live and about 30 seconds each.  Then, you've got 3 spoken word/tape loop
songs which are worth one listen at the most.  The last song, "Sunless
Saturday", sounds like NELSON and should be avoided.  After slogging through
the junk, you're left with some great songs touching on a wide variety of
styles.  Hard rock ("Fight The Youth"), ska ("Housework"), rhythm and
blues/punk ("Pressure"), and reggae ("Pray To The Junkiemaker").  Unlike 24-7
SPYZ who sound like a novelty, all these different styles don't sound forced
with Fishbone.  There's also very little of the boring soft-rock I was afraid I
might get.  Still, I'll take MURPHY'S LAW or RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS over this

GODFLESH: Streetcleaner (Earache)

     Typical grindcore band, right?  Pounding guitars, guttural vocals, and
a... drum machine?  That's right, a drum machine.  Godflesh are actually closer
to MINISTRY than NAPALM DEATH, but combine the best elements of both bands.  A
really interesting album that should appeal to everyone from your average
dressed-in-black-death rocker, to your average dressed-in-black-metal head.
Undoubtedly blows away any Wax Trax shit.  I predict that this type of
"industrial metal" will get a lot more popular in the near future.

INSIDE OUT 7" (Revelation)

     I have to admit that my favorite hardcore bands right now are the
"progressive" ones, the innovative bands who stretch the definition of
hardcore.  Inside Out (from CA.), however, strike hard with an older style that
brings to mind Out of Step-era MINOR THREAT.  These guys have a lot of power,
thanks to guitarist Vic Damone (now in SHELTER).  He throws in plenty of hot
riffs in the six songs.  The vocals are just total screaming, but it blends
well with the highly energetic music.  The bass and drums sometimes get lost
beneath the guitar, but I don't really think it matters.  Hardcore is about the
intensity of LIVE music, and this record definitely captures that intensity.


     What you've got here are a bunch of HC/Metal people who got tired of such
music and decided they wanted to rock out.  The lineup contains two ex-M.O.D.
guys, the lead singer for the now defunct SE/HC band Uniform Choice, and the
old drummer from the speed metal/glam Swiss band Celtic Frost.  To their
credit, Mind Funk's style of rock is closer to JANE'S ADDICTION than WINGER.  I
can't really think of any band whose sound is similar to Mind Funk's.  Yet,
like most modern rock, half the songs have me playing air guitar, and the other
half put me to sleep.  The whole thing is a minor disappointment when you look
at all the hype.


     This CD-only release is exactly like the MINOR THREAT CD-only release.
Everything the band has ever done along with a booklet containing lyrics and
pictures.  On the Op Ivy disk you get the "Energy" LP, the "Hectic" EP and two
songs from a MaximumRockNRoll compilation.  Operation Ivy were a punk band who
realized that ska was just as easy to play as punk and a lot more fun.  I deem
it impossible to listen to this and not start dancing.  A must-have that will
brighten anyone's day.  Operation Ivy are right up there with BLACK FLAG,
CIRCLE JERKS, DEAD KENNEDYS, and any other legendary California punk band.  If
you like this, check out Boston's THE MIGHTY MIGHTY BOSSTONES, who've taken the
punk/ska thing even further.

SICK OF IT ALL: We Stand Alone 7" (In-Effect)

     This is pretty much something to keep the fans satisfied until a new album
comes out. ALL the big NYHC bands "progress" eventually, but with this 7", SOIA
shows that for now, they plan to continue with their one-dimensional thrash
attack.  They are a limited band, but they play with so much aggression that it
works.  The opening track, "What's Goin' On" has one of the best mosh parts
I've ever heard in my entire life.  The sum total is 3 studio tracks (including
a cover of MINOR THREAT's "Betray), and 2-4 live songs, depending on whether
you bought the tape or record.  It should be noted that this is a lot less
polished, and a lot more raw than the "Blood, Sweat, and No Tears" LP.

VARIOUS ARTISTS: Only The Strong 7" (Victory)

     A straight-edge compilation featuring 4 bands from Cleveland, one from
Utah, and one from Chicago.  This record blows dick.  Ridiculous lyrics ("You
should have known.  I wouldn't give in.  Must punish you.  For me to win."),
and really pathetic musicianship.  The astoundingly awful drummer of FACE VALUE
gave me a few laughs.  The only listenable songs are the ones by INSIGHT and
INTEGRITY.  The INSIGHT song has some great bass playing and kind of an S.O.D.
feel.  The INTEGRITY (kings of "hard-edge") cut is super heavy and has a decent
guitar solo.  This crap might have been hot back in 1986, but now it's 1991,
and midwestern SE/HC has fallen way behind New York.
  _   _   ____________________________________________________________________
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   (U)   |====================================================================|
  .ooM   |Copr. 1991 cDc communications by The Pusher            07/20/91-#176|
\_______/|All Rights Pissed Away.                            FIVE YEARS of cDc|