Thursday, February 28, 2013

Regents - 2013 - Antietam After Party

Regents are a punk rock band from "DC / Philly and Alabama." The band is a supergroup, past members having played in such seminal bands as Maximillian Colby, Sleepytime Trio, Frodus, Men’s Recovery Project, Battery, Thursday and Combat Wounded Veteran. Antietam After Party is their debut LP on Lovitt Records, though given the past history of the bands membership this should hardly be considered a debut anything.

At it's best this LP hit's all the high marks of that 90's emo sound we know and love and keeping in that punk rock spirit but not being afraid to try something a little bit different and daring. This album doesn't reinvent the wheel by any stretch of the imagination and that's quite the pedigree and back story to live up to which this album does without even trying that hard. When everything is hitting on all cylinders the songs are fired with a necessary punk rock attitude.

One of the things that makes this record so vital is the diversity in sounds Regents produces. My favourite tracks include Cron Job, Night Soil,  Bowfingers and Start To Beginning and aside from a common punk rock starting place none of these songs sound like each other. This may not be the most consistent album ever but with such different sounds there's bound to be at least something for everyone.

You can stream it for free at the Brooklyn Vegan or buy the LP at Lovitt Records.

Secret Smoker - 2013 - Terminal Architecture

Secret Smoker is a punk rock band from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. They are a three piece and Terminal Archictecture is their debut LP. It is chock-full of angry, precise punk rock songs aimed directly at you.  These songs are intricate, each one has a message and it is delivered as clearly as possible while still maintaining a poetic license. Also, the drummer made his own drums.

Mark and Billy started the hungry ghost collective back in 2007 with a bunch of other bands. Terminal Architecture is I believe Secret Smoker's debut LP, their sophomore album after a split with Nothing!Nothing!Nothing! 

Below is one of my favourite songs of theirs. On their bandcamp page Billy explains this song is about watching  people in airports, and also about our culture of fascination with death that we don't like to talk about.

Most of these dudes where in other bands before this. Bands they were in included jenaset, girlscout heroin, sad idea, whimee(why me), the human record, four square, pistols at dawn/code duello, brown leaf vertigo, we are the living and billy the living.

This album is one I keep coming back to. There are really great songs, Volume Diss-Course, Sight In Sound and the title track are quite excellent and the album as whole is very cohesive. Secret Smoker have their own very angular and accurate punk rock sound which works just as well in individual songs as it does making a longer statement.

 You can purchase their LP Terminal Architecture from Protagonist music here