Let us examine the nature of Shatterhand. Here we have a band from Scotland who sounds like a mix of Descendents and Leatherface. At points, you might think that they have two different singers, but no. There is only one vocal credit on the insert (note: lyrics are not included). This is a compilation with no inherent logic to the order of the songs. I have no idea which ones are earlier or which ones belong to the same releases. Shatterhand definitely sounds better when the singer is channeling Milo Aukerman than those few awkward attempts at his Frankie Stubbs impression. For the sake of continuity, pick a vocal style and stick with it, or at least tell me if those were early songs so I don’t complain about them so much. Otherwise, a fine retrospective of a band I had never heard of. Good job. –Bryan Static
Reviewed by Samuel Fowler2011 seems to be the year all the ancient melodic punk bands that last played a gig in 2003 have all decided to awaken from their hibernation. Out of Spite has risen again (featuring amongst others, such luminaries as Pylon and Imbalance?!?) so it seems fitting that Shatterhand are back with us. It is almost like all the bands that I used to listen to when I was getting into punk/hardcore are trying to recreate my latter youth. ‘s fine with me, that.
Not wanting to start with a negative, but when the tray snapped in I clocked that there were 22 tracks. Its a rare album with more than 12 tracks that can keep the power going all the way through. Given, it is a compilation, but the lack of information in my booklet doesnt let me split it up and work out which songs belong on which album or era, meaning I can’t split my listening up and take each segment at face value.
Again, and as with everything in this vein, Shatterhand are pretty binary, and its quite hard to place them them. Not helping is the fact that the mid/late 90’s gritty skate/melodic punk has been necromanced a hell of a lot lately, with varying (wild) degrees of success. Shatterhand are the absolute epitome of the band that very emphatically either hit or miss. There are some really great songs here that manage to distinctly reference days gone by, but then again there are others that don’t click at all. That ska take on goldfinger for example is dreadful. Sorry!
Dunno. I have absolutely no doubt that Shatterhand kill it live, but for me, 22 tracks spread over 72 minutes is quite an ask for one sitting. Oh, and I’m just on track 19, and feel (again) like eating all my words and instead rabidly enthusing. Crikey.
As you all know by now Japan has been rocked by earthquakes, fires, and tsunamis and a large part of the country is a disaster area. And things only seem to be getting worse at the moment! These events hit close to home for me even from some 7,000 miles away having many Japanese friends, a great love of j-punk bands, and in all honesty half of this label’s orders going to Japan. So in help of the much needed relief effort I will be donating all sales from the webstore to the Red Cross for the next month. I also hope to see things like benefit gigs and such to follow. Our friends will need all the help they can get rebuilding after this disaster!
Jibberjabber is the début full-length from those lovable Northern scamps, Zapiain. After a couple of ace EPs – 2007’s “Erm” and 2008’s “Wrong in Our Own Way” – and a seemingly never-ending run of storming live shows, I was very excited when this arrived through the letter box. Does it live up to my hype? Yes. Frankly. If I was being lazy, I’d lump them into the “gruff punk” category and be done with that; but whilst I find most gruff punk bands get boring too quickly, Zapiain stay interesting. I guess this sounds like the best bits of the Bombed Out and Boss Tuneage back catalogues, with a healthy dose of Blake Schwarzenbach thrown in. Buy it, yeah?
Kill Your Own #5: Ian Perry
Reviewed by Andy MalcolmSome seven years ago Alex Deller mentioned on these very pages that if you were to find a good source of punchy punk rock along the lines of Leatherface or Husker Du, then you were much better off focusing on Finland than Gainesville. I am not entirely sure if Finland has been a steady source of quality music in this genre since he inscribed those words on the internets, but Lifegivingwaters do (or did, they are no longer active) their bit to ensure it remains accurate.
This here CD blasts through ten tracks that are uniformly between 2:08 and 3:36 in length. LGW are focused on delivering sharp blasts, emphasised with vocals that veer between torn throat yells and steady singing that is not all that far removed from Mag’s parts in Yaphet Kotto. Whilst there are moments that do bring to mind Leatherface, you also get plenty of emotive touches in line with 1000 Travels of Jawaharlal, which is pretty cool if you ask me. Which you surely did, because you’re reading my bloody review. This feels like the kind of thing I was jamming a decade ago, but with a freshness and vitality that makes it a pulsating listen. Each track is bashed through with a terrific urgency and commitment, I would lose my shit to this kind of thing live I reckon. Whatever it lacks in originality it makes up for in sheer bullishness. I admire punk bands that want to play melodic music in a hard and fast fashion, it’s born out of my obsession with emo I believe, I just love to hear a racket played by people who know how to groove and write a decent punk rock song at the same time.
Good shit, probably not a huge audience out there for this style, but if you do dig bands that sound like this then you should be all over this record as it’s a bit special.
Hopefully I mentioned already that the first 10 web orders of the Cigarette Crossfire 7” get a free sticker? (9 of those left) That’s reflected on the big cartel now… And I did say after getting the Shatterhand CDs that the first 50 orders of their split 7” would get a free CD since it looked like we got almost 100 extra copies over run. But after counting them it was right at 1000. So after running the numbers on that one I put up a new special! The first 50 copies of the Shatterhand split will get a CD (art included) of Complacency Is Not An Option for just $2 more! Hardly free but it is two awesome records for less than half price! You’ll help fund the upcoming UK tour with 40 Hells too…hah!