Reviews

It's a Jinx

Hawk Baby Hawk Baby Demo Cassette

Six songs of mid-tempo punk. Plodding, heavy-sounding riffs with noisy leads spattered atop. I was going to make a comparison of the vocalist sounding like Larry from the DARVOCETS/WET BRAIN, but the more I’m looking into this, I wouldn’t be surprised if it is actually him. The label is from Cleveland, after all, and I can’t picture another city in the world that would be churning out this kind of punk. A few of the songs sound a bit like the same rewritten song, making the tape blend together slightly, but it’s a pretty damn good song, so why deviate from a formula that works? I listen to music every day at my house, and the low end on this recording is so heavy that it rumbled my speakers, shifting a glass overhead light cover that was balanced on the speaker for the past year or so, sending it crashing to the ground mere feet from where I was standing. It seems even listening to HAWK BABY is potentially dangerous, and this recording has truly captured the essence of Cleveland.

Street Gurgler Primal Business LP

Tough, no-nonsense punk that includes a bit of a lot of things: stompy Oi!-influenced tempos, lyrics pronounced with anarcho-punk conviction, screamin’ psych-metal guitar riffs, fast circle-pit-worthy interludes, and even some freaky sound effects. This record is excellently punk while emphatically defying subgenres and labels. Refreshingly free and original, it shares the sensibility of early punk trailblazers. The closest comparison I can make is that it sounds like a less-panicky and more psychedelic version of DIRT, with higher production value. Even comes with a cool newsprint poster.