Posts Tagged ‘get it on vinyl’

Muuy Biien at Get It On Vinyl

I need to get a few things off my chest before I start this review. First off, I’m a music snob. I can’t help it, but if you’re reading this, you’re probably a music snob too. It’s not the reason I collect vinyl, but it is the reason I’m so damn obsessive about it. I buy multiple copies of certain albums. I buy albums I don’t even really like just because I know they’re collectible. I go to record fairs, and I am friends with all of the old timers as opposed to the young kids. I have to control the car stereo. I don’t listen to the radio. I always want to dig through someone’s music collection when I go to their house for the first time. It goes beyond this though. I’m a flat out dick. I make snide comments to people who listen to bands I don’t like. I belittle entire groups of people who like pop music. I once asked out a girl just because she was wearing a Neil Young shirt. I stopped seeing her when she was listening to a Backstreet Boys’ album in her car.

Why tell you all of this? Because, like all snobs, I have certain genres I focus on more than others (though I actively collect most genres). One of my favorite genres is punk. I grew up on punk. To clarify, I grew up in the 90’s on grunge and bands like Mudhoney and Nirvana. I had older brothers though, and they fed me a steady diet of punk albums that I greedily lapped up. My ears were constantly flooded with bands like Black Flag, Bad Brains, The Stooges, The Angry Samoans, The Circle Jerks, Fear, Minor Threat, The Minutemen, Negative Approach, and the list goes on and on. No conversation gets under my skin like “the punk” conversation. This conversation always starts with me telling someone I’m into punk, and then them asking me how I like Blink 182. This kills me. I hate pop-punk with a passion. Even more so, it kills me that pop-punk has taken over the punk genre, and I want to wave the flag of any real punk bands left out there. If at this point you’re offeneded because you like Blink 182 remember, I told you I was a dick

This is why I was so excited when I got my hands on a copy of Muuy Biien’s second album D.Y.I. (Do Yourself In). It was all based on the cover: a stark white background with an illustration done in blue of a body hanging from the ceiling and a chair knocked over on the ground. The cover immediately reminded me of Black Flag’s album covers, especially Nervous Breakdown. It is not a direct homage, but it is easily imaginable that the cover of D.Y.I. would appear on the poster for an 80’s hardcore punk concert. If you’re a hardcore punk fans, than this cover is enticing indeed.

Upon first listen, I felt a little let down. I’ve listened to D.Y.I. multiple times now, and the album really has grown on me. D.Y.I. has a bit of a post punk feel. The music has a slower more plodding feel than straight ahead punk. In a sense, it feels like Slint or Fugazi, but the songs on D.Y.I. are much shorter then any song on a post punk album. They also don’t have the anger and aggression of a post punk band. D.Y.I. has the snotty feeling off a young British oi band. The songs retain the jagged edges and lumbering bass of post punk though. This mix makes Muuy Biien a strong and interesting listen, but it is clear they are a band still trying to find their sound. The lead singer whelps like John Dwyer of Thee Oh Sees which gives the album an unintentional garage rock feel. In fact, the second track, and one of the strongest, tracks on the album, “Human Error,” feels like a young and bratty garage rock band covering Rites of Spring, but by the time they reach track nine, “Dust,” they have a frantic Minutemen feel.

As much as I like this album, there is one thing I find obnoxious. There are random ambient noise tracks thrown in between the punk songs. D.Y.I. opens with the song “Cyclothymia, Pt. 1” which is an aimless two minutes of boring noise. Had I judged the album just on the opener, I would have quickly given up, but if you can make it through these ambient noise tracks, the payoff is worth it. Specifically, the ambient noise annoying because it’s disruptive. These tracks feel as though they are making an explicit effort to take the listener out of the mood of the album. This makes the album as a whole a bit disconcerting. The album has a punk feel, but it doesn’t quit feel like punk. It’s an album that is punk in spirit with sneering lips spewing sarcastic encouragement for you to commit suicide. The bottom line: if you’re a fan of Dischord label punk or post punk, you will find this to be an album worth owning. You may have to give it a few listens, but it’ll grow on you.

-Andrew W.

The album, the band’s second for Happy Happy Birthday to Me, comes on both vinyl and CD. The LP is a standard weight pressed on white vinyl. The LP is packed with an insert with recording information and a download card. As far as vinyl goes, it’s pretty much your standard punk package. You can purchase a copy from your local independent record store or directly fromHHBTM Records.

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Luxembourg Signal at Get It On Vinyl

There is a no better way to discover a band than a top shelf 7”. While The Luxembourg Signal may be a new band, their other project including Aberdeen, Trembling Blue Stars, and Fonda, make for an impressive resume. The new project is a combination of dream pop and a thin layer of shoegaze, and it works on all the right levels.

The new 7”, available from Shelflife Records, opens with “Distant Drive.” Beth Arzy’s vocals, while soft, have the ability to pull the listener into new levels of euphoria. With Johnny Joyner’s guitar work, its journey into the fog that you will want to take repeatedly.

The flip-side has Betsy Moyer taking over on lead vocals, but has the same feel. The track is cleaner than “Distant Drive” opting for a softer surf rock with the guitar work. What really shines on the track is Brian Espinosa on drums. While Joyner is rides every wave, Espinosa is guiding the ship.

The single is a snippet of the upcoming full length available later this year, and this album just climbed to the top of our pre-order list.

You can order the 7” here.

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Tunabunny at Get It On Vinyl

Last time we reviewed Tunabunny, we were very impressed by their ability to balance their pop and punk influences without jumping too far in either direction. The fine line they walked not only made for enjoyment of both genres influences, but gave their sound a sense of controlled chaos that made Genius Fatigue a real enjoyably listen.

Now Tunabunny is back with Kingdom Technology. The band has never settled into one genre, but with this release, the control is gone and the chaos is everywhere. While the sounds are all over the map, at times to archaic levels, there is still plenty to like about the new album.

The new direction is evident from the start. Where Tunabunny albums usually start with plenty of thrashing guitars full-tilt distorted vocals, Kingdom Technology opens with beautiful vocal harmonies and driving bass lines. “Airless Spaces” builds suspense before kicking into the piercing guitar work on “Canaries in Mineshafts.”

One thing that does show uniformity is the bands refined sound. Where the muddle of voices and instruments overloaded their previous works, tracks like “Not New Years” showcase a cleaned up sound for the band. While bass heavy, the band explores more electronic elements to their tracks. In what sounds like a track from the band Gossip, “Bag of Bones” continues the bands new electronic experimentation, but sadly the vocal get lost in the mix.

There are times when the sound drives off the road and never really finds a common thread. From track to track, it seems they are trying to up the ante every time with more avant guard sounds. However, that’s their style. Remember, “Tunabunny thinks of pop/rock as something that should be destroyed, or at the very least subverted, but would probably be better for everyone involved if it simply ceased to exist.” If a genre even began to define Tunabunny, they would ensure its death.

The Vinyl
Happy Happy Birthday to Me Records always releases top shelf wax. Along with a full color jacket, the album is presed on 140 gram black vinyl and includes a download card. A lyric sheet would be great, but the heavy duty card with liner notes is a cool addition. You can purchase your copy of “Kingdom Technology” from your local independent record store or the HHBTM website.

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