Wednesday, October 23, 2013

THE ANXIETIES: Richard Hell does a line with Stiv...


Rule Number 1: Most live recording full-lengths suck… Why? Most of the time all you can hear is a paper-thin drum sound, way too loud trebly bass and the guitar is almost nowhere to be found. On the worst live albums, the vocals are cranked up beyond what is necessary and it sounds like some dude singing over a sound check of a drum kit. I used to get so pissed, when I would buy one of my favorite band's live CDs in the used section and then be subjected to 45 minutes worth of sub-par renditions and crappy re-writings of classic songs with unnecessary “recently added” dumb ass "spoken word" parts. The garbage in the middle of the song where the singer is going on and on about something really stupid.

When I listened to the Anxieties Live at Centaur Guitar, I was fucking stunned by the energy, snot driven fury, and sharp musical attack of Scott Von Rocket and his droogs from Portland, Oregon. Portland has been cranking out some serious punk rock and new wave damage for years with record collector staples such as Sado-Nation, The Neo Boys ( a must), and The Wipers. The Anxieties subliminally carry on this tradition of garage rock that punches hard with punk rock viciousness. In fact if you took the chord stylings of the Neo Boys and combined them with Richard Hell’s best 5 songs, did a line of the pure white stuff for good measure, you’d come out sounding like this. Von Rocket has a distinct vocal style that bashes your skull in while soaking the fragments in neurotic rhythmic melody. I’ve been diggin’ on these guys since their “Black Hole” 7” a few years back, when I really sunk my teeth into what this band was about. Desolate themes of Sci-Fi experimentation, psycho girls, and wild noise rule the land in an “anything goes” nightclub, where no one paid to get in tonight.

The guitar is fuzzed, crisp, and cranked like a motherfucker on this live album, and it’s all here without charge, but donate to this worthwhile band! Fuck man, if we do not support our punk community, we’ll be left with nothing, seriously, these bands put their hearts and energy into this process and it’s never for money. It’s for the human need to rock like fuck, exorcise displeasure, and allow self-expression while keeping the sounds of sonic freedom alive. Download it, blast it, and send them some scratch for a 12 pack… “Panic Room”, “ Lab Rats”, and the nail biting spastic rock blast of “Blank Stares” are the future soundtrack to your next downward spiral. You know, the one with that fishnet and garter girl you met at the show, who promised you that there would be No Tomorrow and No Future. When you wake up in your own vomit with a new girlfriend and a smirk on your face, don’t blame me. I’d go get a refill and play this album again and again.

-Kevin McGovern