Tag Archives: Pop Punk

Fat Wreck Chords – Wrecktrospective – CD Review

If one of your New Year’s resolutions for 2010 was to listen to more punk rock music you are in luck. Recently Fat Wreck Chords put out their first ever anthology full of punk rock goodness — 88 songs to be exact. Wrecktrospective is a three-disc collection of greatest hits, demos, and even limited edition material that spans the 20 years since the label was founded.

Formed by NOFX frontman Fat Mike with little advertising and no commercial help, the independent punk label has issued over 280 releases and is a well known favorite of many Warped Tour fans. The three-CD set contained in the digi-pack is just a sample of all that has been Fat.

The anthology is more or less a musical history of the bands that have put out material over the last 20 years since Fat Mike decided to start the label. Featuring punk bands from the past and present, I can only imagine that it was no easy task to take so many songs from such a span of artists and put them into the compilation, but it was done perfectly.

Throughout the set I was reminded of a slew of bands I stopped listening to over the years and was happy to hear them all over again. When a label has put out over 280 releases, sometimes it’s hard to remember them all.

The first disc is full of non-commercial hit songs also known as “Fattest Hits.” Listening to the first segment was like a blast from the past for me as I have been a Fat Wreck fan since its inception. Featuring familiar tracks by current label mates NOFX, Strung Out, and the Mad Caddies, the CD includes 33 songs by 33 different bands.

The disc also contains tracks from former Fat alumni who either disbanded or went on to bigger and better things over the years such as Against Me!, Less Than Jake, Hi Standard, and others. The first disc alone brought back good memories of amazing bands that I used to rock out to on a daily basis. If I were to make a greatest hits Fat album I might have selected just a handful of other tracks for some of the artists, but all in all they did a good job putting it together.

The demo disc, or disc two, features many tracks that were hidden gems until now. I had heard some of these tracks as well as variations on other Fat compilations before, but having all of them all on one CD is so much more fulfilling. From the Mad Caddies’ “Polyester Khakis” (where they sample Body Count) to the acoustic “Everyone Is Telling Me I’ll Never Win, If I Fall In Love With A Girl From Marin” by Bracket, I really enjoyed the collection.

Perhaps the most exciting feature of this set is the third disc as it contains the limited release Fat Club 7″ series in its entirety. For people like me who missed out on the Fat Club this is a dream come true as it previously was not available on CD. Then again I am sure people who were lucky enough to join the Fat Club will appreciate this as well so they don’t have to figure out how to use the USB record player to transfer their prized collection onto their computers.

I would have loved to have seen a fourth disc in this set including all of NOFX’s 7” of the month club tracks and the joke in its entirety but I’ll take what I can get at this time. At only $15 on the Fat Wreck Chords website this is a steal of a release and even includes a fold-out poster showing every Fat Wreck Chords release ever put out.

My only complaint with this set is the lack of a DVD. I think it would have been fitting to throw in a disc featuring live performances and music videos by an assortment of the bands. Seeing how Fat Wreck Chords strayed away from mainstream overload (aka MTV), I would have thought they would have built up a collection of videos and footage that further helped celebrate the two decades of accomplishment. Who knows, that could be in the works.

Previous Fat fans may not get as much out of this set as a newcomer might mainly because many of the songs on the disc have been on other Fat compilations over the years. Still it’s a nicely put together collection of what makes Fat Wreck Chords.

Upon checking out the music I took a minute to read the insert pertaining to the record label written by Fat Mike himself. It’s really an interesting read as Fat Mike confesses that the record label was all about “putting out punk bands that I really like” and talks about the ups and downs he went through starting his own business.

Knowing how the music business has been going these days, I was not shocked to read that Fat Wreck Chords is basically back where they started with little financial gain but I am so proud of them for doing their best to continue. With so many labels out there that folded over the years due to money issues (i.e. Grand Royal), I really hope to see Fat Wreck Chords last another 20 years and with their roster I have the feeling it will not be that difficult.

To grab a copy of this 3 CD punk gem head over to Fat Wreck Chords and nab it for only $15.

Here is a funny video:

(please note this is for humor purposes only and if you can not take a joke then you are a jerk…)

Track Listing:
1: NOFX – The Separation of Church and Skate
2: Lagwagon – Violins
3: Propagandhi – Back to the Motor League
4: No Use For a Name – Soulmate
5: Bracket – 2RAK005
6: Strung Out – Too Close to See
7: Face To Face – You’ve Done Nothing
8: Good Riddance – Weight of the World
9: Tilt – War Room
10: Me First – Leaving on a Jet Plane
11: Wizo – Raum der Zeit
12: Frenzal Rhomb – Never Had So Much Fun
13: Hi-Standard – Wait for the Sun
14: Snuff – Martin
15: Goober Patrol – Easy Life
16: Swingin’ Utters – Windspitting Punk
17: Screeching Weasel – Cool Kids
18: Mad Caddies – Mary Melody
19: Consumed – Brutal Truth
20: Sick of It All – The Bland Within
21: Avail – Black and Red
22: Less Than Jake – Gainesville Rock City
23: Anti-Flag – Turncoat
24: Rise Against – Heaven Knows
25: The Real McKenzies – Kings of Fife
26: The Lawrence Arms – Like a Record Player
28: None More Black – Everyday Balloons
29: Against Me! – T.S.R.
30: Descendents – ‘Merican
31: Only Crime – R.J.R.
32: Chixdiggit! – I Remember You
33: Dead To Me – By the Throat
34: Good Riddance – Flies First Class
35: Rise Against – Alive and Well
36: The Flatliners – Eulogy
37: NOFX – It’s My Job to Keep Punk Rock Elite
38: The Lawrence Arms – On With the Show
39: Lagwagon – Bury the Hatchet
40: Western Addiction – The Church of Black Flag
41: The Loved Ones – Living Will (Get You Dead)
42: Star Fucking Hipsters – Immigrants & Hypocrites
43: Bracket – Everyone is Telling Me I’ll Never Win, If I Fall in Love With a Girl From Marin [Acoustic]
44: American Steel – Sons of Avarice
45: Nerf Herder – 5000 Ways to Die
46: Propagandhi – Middle Finger Response
47: None More Black – Slytherin? My Ass!
48: Swingin’ Utters – A Promise to Distinction
49: Against Me! – You Look Like I Need a Drink [Acoustic]
50: The Soviettes – Multiply and Divide
51: Zero Down – No Apologies
52: No Use For a Name – Always Carrie
53: Dead To Me – Writing Letters
54: Strung Out – Alone
55: The Dickies – My Pop the Cop
56: Avail – Done Reckoning
57: Mad Caddies – Polyester Khakis
58: The Sainte Catherines – Hau Weg die Scheisse
59: Epoxies – It’s You
60: Smoke or Fire – Goodbye to Boston
61: Anti-Flag – Underground Network
62: The Vandals – Underground
63: The Vandals – Why Are You Alive
64: American Steel – Middle of the Night
65: American Steel – New Religion Everyday
66: The Real McKenzies – Another Round
67: The Real McKenzies – Loch Lomond
68: MXPX – The Road Less Traveled
69: MXPX – You Hold the Key
70: Strike Anywhere – Antidote
71: Strike Anywhere – Asleep
72: Randy – I’m Stepping Out
73: Randy – Unite
74: Randy – Freedom Song
75: NOFX – Zyklone B Bathouse
76: NOFX – Spaghetti Motel
77: Swingin’ Utters – Black Mountain Rain
78: Swingin’ Utters – Outside Life
79: Strung Out – Dig
80: Strung Out – Lost Motel
81: Enemy You – The Promise Breakers
82: Enemy You – Kind Hearts
83: Enemy You – Emma
84: The Lawrence Arms – Porno and Snuff Films
85: The Lawrence Arms – A Toast
86: The Lawrence Arms – Overheated
87: One Man Army – Victoria
88: One Man Army – She Wants Me Dead

NOFX – Cokie The Clown – CD Review

Leave it to NOFX to keep it unique for their fans. This time around the 25 year punk rock veterans have released a five song EP titled Cokie The Clown. The uniqueness of this EP is that four of the songs were choice cut tracks for their most recent full length release that the band chose to take off Coaster and release at a later time. Like a chaser swig of beer to a strong shot, Cokie The Clown follows Coaster perfectly giving the fans just a little bit more NOFX zing to tie them over until the next round.

The cover of the EP shows Cokie The Clown, rather a scary looking Fat Mike clown portrait that makes Pennywise in Stephen King’s IT look harmless. On the back of the EP is a circus flier comically showcasing the band as entertainers of the mediocre show.  The EP contains four unreleased tracks and an acoustic version of one song that appeared on Coaster.

Opening track “Cokie The Clown” incorporates anti-sobriety with full on abuse in a first person sung song about said clown and his shenanigans with Eric Melvin providing introduction. I cracked up upon hearing the clown asking to be watched while juggling “eight balls” as well as the line “I will trip you down those 12 giant steps” knowing exactly which steps he referred to.

“Straight Outta Massachusetts” resembled something that Matt Stone or Trey Parker of South Park fame might have written for a musical. Still catchy and fun the song told the story of a rowdy 5 year old (who later grows up to be Fat Mike I am assuming) shun by his father from the east coast to the west coast to be with his mother. The song originally appeared on an episode of Pancake Mountain featuring Fat Mike and his adorable daughter.  (If you have never heard of Pancake Mountain you should click THIS.)

“Fermented And Flailing” and “Codependence Day” both kept with the fats riffs and ever so candid lyrics speaking of the pros and cons about alcoholism.  Just like most NOFX songs the lyrics are to the point about their opinion but also well formulated.

Unquestionably the most depressing song of the year “My Orphan Year” that already choked me up on Coaster got even sadder thanks to Fat Mike picking up an acoustic guitar and slowing things down all by himself. The true story formulated into song about Fat Mike losing his folks in 2006 seriously will bring tears to eyes of many (including myself). Let it be know, even rampant punk rockers have feelings too.

The EP is available on CD and also will be split into two 7”s for all you vinyl junkies out there. As an added bonus Fat Wreck Chords is offering a Cokie The Clown bundle including a t-shirt and either the CD version or the two 7” discs of the EP.

Cokie The Clown comes out on November 24th but if you can not wait you can pre-order it right now by going HERE.

Fat Mike actually dressed up as Cokie at the Riot Fest in Chicago and pulled a not so typical prank involving a plastic flower and some white stuff…

If that is not hilarious enough, check out the video that just posted up on MySpace for “Cokie The Clown”:

NOFX – Cokie The Clown

NOFX | MySpace Music Videos

Here is the Pancake Mountain version of “Straight Outta Massachusetts” featuring Fat Mike and his daughter:

Music Video: New Found Glory vs. Zombies in “Don’t Let Her Pull You Down”

Just in time for Halloween…

New Found Glory declare that “pop-punk is not dead” in this new video and are currently hitting the road this fall with Dashboard Confessional to prove it.

New Found Glory Headlining Tour Dates:
Oct 18 – Toad’s Place – New Haven, CT
Oct 19 – Chameleon Club – Lancaster, PA
Oct 21 – The Chance – Poughkeepsie, NY
Oct 22 – Northern Lights – Clifton Park, NY
Oct 23 – LeMoyne College – Syracuse, NY
Oct 24 – Eleanor Rigby’s – Jermyn, PA
Oct 25 – Higher Ground – Burlington, VT
Oct 27 – Intersection – Grand Rapids, MI
Oct 28 – Peabody’s – Cleveland, OH
Oct 30 – Southgate House – Newport, KY
Oct 31 – The Rave – Milwaukee, WI
Nov 1 – People’s Court – Des Moines, IA
Nov 2 – Slowdown – Omaha, NE
Nov 3 – Station 4 – St. Paul, MN
Nov 5 – New Daisy – Memphis, TN
Nov 6 – Emerson Theater – Indianapolis, IN
Nov 7 – Pop’s – Sauget, IL
Dec 1 – Cat’s Cradle – Carrboro, NC
Dec 3 – Recher Theatre – Towson, MD

New Found Glory / Dashboard Confessional Tour Dates:
Nov 8 – Uptown Theater – Kansas City, MO *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 9 – Fillmore Auditorium – Denver, CO *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 11 – McKay Center – Salt Lake City, UT *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 13 – San Jose Civic Center – San Jose, CA *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 14 – Bren Events Center – Irvine, CA *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 15 – Hollywood Palladium – Los Angeles, CA *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 17 – Soma – San Diego, CA *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 18 – Marquee Theater – Tempe, AZ *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 20 – Bricktown Ballroom – Oklahoma City, OK *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 21 – Sunset Station – San Antonio, TX*with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 22 – Palladium Ballroom – Dallas, TX *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 24 – Warehouse Live – Houston, TX *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 27 – Pompano Beach Amphitheater – Pompano Beach, FL *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 28 – House of Blues – Orlando, FL *with Dashboard Confessional
Nov 29 – House of Blues – Orlando, FL *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 3 – Tsongas Arena – Lowell, MA *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 4 – Susquehanna Bank Center – Camden, NJ *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 5 – Ice Garden Arena – Pittsburgh, PA *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 7 – Nokia Theater – New York, NY *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 8 – Nokia Theater – New York, NY *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 9 – Nokia Theater – New York, NY *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 11 – Aragon – Chicago, IL *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 12 – Fillmore – Detroit, MI *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 13 – Kool Haus – Toronto, Ont. *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 14 – Kool Haus – Toronto, Ont. *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 16 – The National – Richmond, VA *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 17 – Fillmore – Charlotte, NC *with Dashboard Confessional
Dec 18 – Tabernacle – Atlanta, GA *with Dashboard Confessional


Contest: “Tweet” New Found Glory

Punk pop rockers New Found Glory (NFG) are asking fans for help in finding local opening acts for their small club headline shows the are playing in the upcoming months.  They will be touring in support of their new album they released this past Spring called Not Without A Fight.

So how can you help you ask?  Excellent question.

All you have to do is send a “Tweet”  to @xchadballx and @steveisdareason on the popular mini-blog site Twitter the local band you think should open for them. They will pick the bands based upon the number of local requests they get.

What a novel idea…   The dates for their headlining tour (they will also be touring with Dashboard Confessional this Fall too but this contest does not apply to those shows) are listed below.  If you know of a local band you think should open for NFG then I suggest you tweet them a little message.

I have a couple local favorites in mind I will be tweeting them about…  I suggest you do the same.  Hell, even if you are in a band it could not hurt to tell them from perhaps a friend’s Twitter account how awesome your band is.  You never know, they may ask you to open for them!

The above was reshaped and manipulated from a message from Chad Gilbert of NFG. Here’s his take on the whole idea as well as some other words:

Support Your Local Scene!

Before NFG head out on tour with Dashboard Confessional this fall we will be doing a limited amount of smaller intimate club shows. For the past few years NFG have not been able to hook up local bands due to a full traveling line up. We know how important it is to support local bands and local music scenes. That is how NFG got our start. We use to open locally in South Florida for bands like MxPx, the Get Up Kids, Unwritten Law,Bane etc. Playing those shows helped build our band and build our local scene. This tour will give us an opportunity to finally help out a little.

We ask you to “Tweet” @xchadballx and @steveisdareason some suggestions for local bands to open up the NFG show in their town. Please check http://www.myspace.com/newfoundglory for all the tour dates. Make sure you request bands only for our own headline shows, Not the shows we will be playing with Dashboard Confessional.

We do not want to piss any one off or discourage any bands so NFG will not be picking the specific band. We are just compiling a list of bands that we get the most requests for and submitting it to the local promoter to pick.

Also on all of these shows will be a fellow Floridian band called Fallen From The Sky and Pennsylvania’s TITLE FIGHT!

thanks so much and we hope to see you all this fall!

DONT LET HER PULL YOU DOWN the movie coming soon!

your friend always

Tour Dates (for their headlining shows only)
Oct 18 2009 – Toads Place (Headline Show) – New Haven, Connecticut
Oct 19 2009 – Chameleon Club (Headline Show) – Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Oct 21 2009 – The Chance (Headline Show) – Poughkeepsie, New York
Oct 22 2009 – Northern Lights (Headline Show) – Clifton Park, New York
Oct 24 2009 – Eleanor Rigby’s (Headline Show) – Jermyn, Pennsylvania
Oct 25 2009 – Higher Ground (Headline Show) – Burlington, Vermont
Oct 27 2009 – The Intersection (Headline Show) – Grand Rapids, Michigan
Oct 28 2009 – Peabody’s Downunder (Headline Show) – Cleveland, Ohio
Oct 30 2009 – Southgate House (Headline Show) – Newport, Kentucky
Oct 31 2009 – The Rave (Headline Show) – Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Nov 1 2009 – People’s Court (Headline Show) – Des Moines, Iowa
Nov 2 2009 – Slowdown (Headline Show) – Omaha, Nebraska
Nov 3 2009 – Station 4 (Headline Show) – Saint Paul, Minnesota
Nov 5 2009 – New Daisy (Headline Show) – Memphis, Tennessee
Nov 6 2009 – Emerson Theater (Headline Show) – Indianapolis, Indiana
Nov 7 2009 – Pop’s (Headline Show) – Sauget, Illinois
Nov 23 2009 – Cine El Ray (Headline Show) – Mcallen, Texas
Dec 1 2009 – Cat’s Cradle (Headline Show) – Carrboro, North Carolina
Dec 2 2009 – Recher Theatre (Headline show) – Towson, Maryland

Teenage Bottlerocket – They Came From The Shadows – CD Review

It’s not every day that you hear about a Wyoming band cranking out amazing, fast-and-fun punk-rock tunes but that is what Teenage Bottlerocket does best. The foursome, hailing from The Cowboy State, ditched the clichéd Wyoming lifestyle, threw on black leather motorcycle jackets, grabbed their guitars, and created some of the catchiest punk tunes I myself have heard in years.

The band recently released their fourth album, entitled They Came From The Shadows, which happens to also be the band’s first release with the independent punk rock label Fat Wreck Chords.

The band intrigued me with their prior release, Warning Device, when I checked it out last year. With Ramones-like similarities, their pop-punk elegance proved attention-grabbing throughout the disc and I found myself won over by one of the more intelligent bands on the punk scene.

How intelligent? Well it just so happens to be that two members  of the band are engineers. Another fun little fact: two members are identical twins.

“Skate Or Die” starts off the album with an ode to younger years of tearing it up complete with classic skate references to the Bones Brigade, street skater legend Rodney  Mullen, and even some ’80’s lingo like the term “poseur.”  I love the fact that this song is all about the old-school days of skateboarding before it went mainstream.

The girl dodging “Don’t Want To Go” tells of missing the show to avoid the girl at the show. This classic high school tale of shunning from the ex is a cool, likable track. 

“Bigger Than Kiss” cracks me up as the band verbally assaults the aging Detroit Rock City make-up wearing men, declaring “Ace Frehley can play guitar but he ain’t no f@cking Kerry King” and shouting, “Calling Dr. Love hey get a load of this, Ray beat the piss out of Peter Criss!” The hilarious song continues to brag that Teenage Bottlerocket will one day be bigger than Kiss and by the end of the song the band seems to think they have proved their boast true.

The disheartening “Not OK” is one of my favorite tracks on the album.  I can’t help but to relate this song to many times in my past. “Call In Sick” should be the working class’ national anthem.  I could only think of ’80’s punk bands like Black Flag while listening to the song, not because of its music but rather its uncomplicated lyrics that tell a truthful story about the feeling many deal with on a day-to-day basis. “Fatso Goes Nutzoid” contains many elements of ’80’s speed punk, especially with the rifling off of the lyrics.

“Without You” is another track I find myself digging over the others and I love the dual vocals along with the fast-paced drumming. The song bums me out, but in a good way, as it describes missing a special someone who no longer is in the picture. It’s songs like this—you know, the ones you relate to— that make me appreciate music all the more.

The songs on They Came From The Shadows are simple but fun and directly to the point. The album seems to end just as quickly as it begins, begging for another listen. I think that is what I love so much about this band: the simplicity. Not one song here exceeds three-and-a-half minutes, but it doesn’t matter to me at all.

It’s nice to see Teenage Bottlerocket skip out on the extra bells and whistles to sound different. They keep it straightforward on this album (and their previous one, for that matter) and make it sound almost too easy. Fans of the Ramones, Screeching Weasel, the Vandals, and even pre-famed Green Day really need to check out this band if they have not already done so.

Look for Teenage Bottlerocket on tour in support of They Came From The Shadows this fall. From what I have heard, this band is amazing live and I know when they roll though my town next month I will be there to witness it for myself.  Click HERE for a complete list of tour dates.  This is a punk show not to be missed!!!

DOWNLOAD THIS!Teenage Bottlerocket – “Skate Or Die”
DOWNLOAD THIS!Teenage Bottlerocket – “Don’t Want To Go”

Here is the hilarious video for “Skate Or Die”.  I can not stop thinking of Gleaming The Cube

Here’s a video of “In The Basement” off of their previous release Warning Device: