Punk Rock Love SongsRock Punk Love Songs
The Schmaltz is the debut album of Spanish Love Songs, a Los Angeles line-up put together by Dylan Slocum (vocals and guitar), Kyle McAulay (guitar), Gabe Mayeshiro (bass), Ruben Duarte (drums) and Meredith Van Woert (synth). The album expected from the single Bellyache evolves along eleven tracks combining melodic punk rock with indie/emo contours in the wake of bands like The Menzingers and The Wonder Years.
<font color="#ffff00">The Queers (1996) L'ultima Thule
Almost seventeen years ago, the Queers were one of the most popular cult bands in American punk. Today they are still active, between continuous personnel changes and a since then significantly reduced record production (only five albums between 1998 and 2010, compared to six in the period 1990-1996).
Welcome to the Punk Rock PartyHistoric formation of melodic hardcore abroad, the Queers are on the verge of an Italian trip that will continue to assert its punk rock in the name of exuberance and irony. "The fact that we have composed I Want Cunt, for example, doesn't mean that we are sexists or want to distance ourselves from homosexuals: queers are connected to the concept of "fun", just like Ramones or Angry Samoans are, and after all, the best punk music is about having a good time.
I think our audience understands the difference between ironic songs like I Want Count or Les Gays Boy and skinhead songs about wild beating against the so-called faggots. This already eloquent calling card was accompanied by a repertoire of raw and jingling punk rock with no less provocative titles like Fagtown, Trash This Place, I Don't Wanna Work or I Want Cunt: teen proclamations of blossoming clarity in the wake of so many heroes of the 77's, sung with rage and supported by scarce and scratchy rock'n'roll structures.
With a noisy time lag and tragically "out of fashion" in a time that promoted completely different sounds (on the one hand the hardcore more or less "straight edge", on the other hand the intellectual executions of the New Age School), the queers separated after a few years of activity on a local level and various personnel changes, leaving two singles in very limited editions (only two hundred each) on the label Doheny:
and Kicked Out Of The Webelos, with seven, from 1984. These songs can be found on the anthological CD A Day Late And A Dollar Short (Lookout! 1995), with the added benefit of several unreleased songs from the same period, recorded specifically with singer Wimpy Rutherford, who was already on the microphone in the second album.
While collectors started paying dozens and then hundreds of dollars to get the very rare copies of the two 7", the Reformed Queers made their first grown up LP, released by British label Shakin' Street in 1990; Joe King was urged to imitate the group by discovering that his idols Ramones proposed a live Kicked Out Of The Webelos album, but to give the project a concrete start, there was certainly an awareness that in the renewed American subsurface scene there could be room for a bunch of young provincialists who wanted to stay true to the original punk spirit and continue the massage.
The space was available, of course, but to occupy it, the ensemble had to wait a few more years: only with the release of the third record Beats Off (Lookout!, 1994) - produced in the recording room, like the previous one, and as a revised and corrected new edition of the first one, by the famous Ben Weasel, head of Chicago's Screeching Weasel and controversial "critic" on the pages of the magazine Max Rock'n'Roll - declared without fear of denial that the seed of Growth Up and the following Love Songs For The Retardeded
1993: a little jewel of minimal and pungent punk, full of explanatory titles like Ursula finally has her tits, Fuck this world, I hate everything and I can't stop furzing) was now in the making, according to a development plan designed to continue in Move Back Home (Lookout!, 1995) and Don't Back Down (Lookout!, 1996) - with partly unpleasant results for the most extreme fans.
It seems very clear that the sound of Queers has gone through a gradual process of (relative) softening, moving towards less hard, faster and instinctive patterns, and that the trio is now more sensitive to pop temptations (core), is clearly shown in the final work, which is always balanced between the fathers and uncles Ramones Descendents, but certainly more accessible - since they emphasize greater care to vocal harmonies and less angularity of guitars - than any other part of the group.
To a certain extent, because the differences between the Love Songs For The Retarded/Beat Off and Don't Back Down Paar are the same as for not very experienced ears: to confirm this thesis, perhaps to stay in the context of the new record, to compare episodes like I'm OK You're Fed or Bush Your Teaeth (where the influence of the old style is still dominant) with the equally pleasant Punk Rock Girls, Bornd To Doishes, or I Can't Get Over You, where the punk impetus is overshadowed by the desire to pay tribute to the roots of surfing and popular music of the fifties and sixties.
Besides the singles of the first phase of his career, the various 7-inch releases from 1994 to today - five of them: Too Tumb To Quit and Look Ma' No Flannel (the title is a delicious mockery of grounge fashion), both with Wimpy Rutherford vocals and released by Toheny in 1993 and Clearview in 1994, respectively, My Old Man's A Fatso released by Wound Up in 1995 (with the remake of the song of the same name by Angry Samoans) and the two releases on Lookout in 1995 (with
1995 and 1996, Surf Goddess and Bubblegum Dreams - and the five albums themselves, Queers' production includes four more long works: one, available only on CD, is the aforementioned A Day Late And A Dollar Short, with edited and unreleased recordings from 1982-1993, while the other - on vinyl - is two adrenaline-charged "live" (Shout At The Queers, Selffless 1994 and Suck This!).
Clearview 1995) and the complete remake of Rocket To Russia (Selfless, 1995) by the Ramones masters (every supporter) should know that for the same label as the latter also Selfless, a Ramones by Screeching Weasel and a Leave Home by Vindictives were born.