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D.O.A./Thor - split CD 12/38:10
Apparently, all these songs are about hockey. Let me say at the outset, I know nothing about hockey. I do know what I like, though, and I like this. D.O.A. kicks things off with the catchy title tune, all shouts and buzzy power. Thor's "Call of the Triumphant" is equally infectious, with a grinding metal backing and amazing guitars. The disc continues like this, with the bands alternating tracks. The mix is perfect, from glorious metal played straight from Mt. Olympus, to the hardcore mayhem and brilliant humor of what D.O.A. has called "puck rock". I was already a D.O.A. fan, now I'm a Thor fan. Still not a hockey fan, though. Mark
@ www.suddendeath.com

D.O.A. - "Win The Battle" CD 13/42:56
Had he had more of a lust for attention and personal gain, Joey "Shithead" Keithley could have very well become as ubiquitous (and insufferable) as other politically-correct rock figureheads like Springsteen and Bono. He hasn’t, though, and thank God for that. This latest offering from Keithley and co. is pretty much keeping to the same path they’ve trod all these years, ensuring their status as Canada’s best grassroots-level punk band. Happily, in between typically impassioned screeds like their WTC meditation "All Across The USA", DOA is still as capable of being, erm, irreverent as in the glory days of "Slave To My Dick" (choice examples here include "If I Were A Redneck" and "Beer Liberation Army"). Proceedings are topped off with a gutsy yet touching acoustic tribute to their late compadre Dimwit. MLH
@ www.suddendeath.com

D.O.A. – “War and Peace: D.O.A. 25th Anniversary Anthology” CD 26/67:31
D.O.A. is western Canada’s premier punk band, and the 25 years represented on this collection shows the hows and whys. Highly politicized, their songs hold a mirror up to culture and society, showing the flaws of war, suburbia, multinational corporations, and lifestyles. One of the reasons they’ve survived for lo these many years, and remain successful, is that while they never lose their vision, they refuse to tie themselves to one sound. They can be rough, like their first cut of “Disco Sucks” (1978) and “Dead Men Tell No Tales” (2001), or be harmonically charged like “Death to the Multinationals” (1998). But there are also chants, reggae influences, a whole gamut of influences. And these can be seen presently, in bands like Pittsburgh’s Anti-Flag, and the Nerve! from Brooklyn. Oh, and great Canadian stereotypical picture on the back of the CD booklet, guys…gave me a good laugh. RBF
@ www.suddendeath.com

D4 - “6Twenty” CD 13/41:22
This is the latest in re-fitted for the new millienium “rock” bands. (Rock is back, in case you didn’t know.) All the earmarks are present:the playful snarl, the chewy/crunchy guitars that harken back to Steve Jones and Johnny Thunders, even the obligatory cover of an underrated classic. Here it’s the Heartbreakers’ “Pirate Love”, which turns out to be deferential. “R-n-R Motherfucker”, “Runnin’ on Empty” and Exit to the City” are all good songs, but that’s all they are, and Iwanted something more. If they expect to hang with the Hives and Vines they’d better step it up. Anthony
@ Flying Nun, no address

Da Skywalkers – “Smalltown Saviours” CD 14/31:30
Superior anthemic energetic (hell, breakneck) street punk from Sweden that approaches hardcore velocity at times. This turned out to be better than many a pseudo-crew out there. Lyrics are about more than just brews and the Crew as well. Good for that ol’ adrenalin fix. David
@ www.householdnamerecords.co.uk MP3 Download

Dagons – “Teeth for Pearls” CD 14/33:39
A female/male duo, with the former on guitar and vox and the latter on drums. The tunes in question range from mid-tempo garage stompers to wistful pop tuneage, all with a distinctly haunting feel to them. The record’s not dissimilar in spots to an otherworldly, more garagey Beat Happening (and I mean that as a compliment). Quite effective on such tunes as “Heaven Wasn’t In the Sky” and “You Kill the Dream”, but all around very listenable indeed. David
@ www.dagons.net MP3 Download

Dakota/Dakota - "Shot In The Dark" CD 10/36:01
Mindful, energetic, bite-size chunks of instrumentalia from this Chicago trio. Kind of like a pintsize version of King Crimson at times, which may just be down to the intermittent low-end Chapman stick finger-tappery; other times like the Meat Puppets in their more aggressively bucolic moments. Is this what the youngsters today call “math rock”? One other disconcerting point: is it just me, or are titles like “I Hope To God I’m Not A Sheep” and “No Matter How Hard I Try I Never Remember The Alamo” - as found herein - today’s equivalent of 70’s jazz-fusion appellations like “What Is Cosmic Reality”? I tend to think so. MLH
@ www.armsreachrecordings.com

Damien Jurado - “Where Shall You Take Me?” CD 10/31:37 S
If the world was fair, and careers were made on talent, not hype, Damien Jurado would be a huge star. But it isn’t, and he’s not. I don’t suppose he cares, though, because he’s making records that are as good as anything out there today. Last year, on the album “I Break Chairs” - his last for Sub Pop - Jurado proved he can rock. But he’s at his best when playing slow, contemplative, acoustic guitar-driven ballads, and that’s what this record offers. It is probably Jurado’s darkest work yet; several of the songs deal with a fictional serial killer who sees his murderous ways not as a sign of evil, but as “a habit I can’t kick.” Like almost everything else Jurado has done, this is an amazingly good record. Kevin
@ www.secretlycanadian.com MP3 Download

Damone – “From the Attic” CD 11/30:24
These guys and girl rule. Complete fun rock done to Matt Dillon’s feathered hair in that flick Over The Edge’s perfection. There is no way you cannot stand still when Damone hits the stage or your speakers. Dude…the volume was cranked so loud as I listened to them I know the guy across the hall was about to ring the authorities and have my stereo taken away from me. This is kind of hot rock that I am way into. Like Sahara Hotnights or the Donnas or something. Maybe it’s the female singer’s influence. The rest of the band are guys though. No matter. So good man! So much fun. Total rock out in your van abandon with a banana board and sunset to boot. I think the band’s name may come from the dude in Fast Times at Ridgemont High who was the scalper and got Stacy pregnant, Mike Damone. But I could be wrong. I doubt it though. There’s just that innocent classic hard rock feel to them that I bet that’s where they got it. Rock and Roll High School too. I mean, they have this song called “Carwash Romance”. Oh my god…you need this record! Whittaker
@ www.rcarecords.com

Dan Melchoir’s Broke Revue – “Bitterness, Spite, Rage, & Scorn” CD 14:42/47
Can’t say I was impressed by what I heard of his earlier efforts, but this turned out to be a mighty fine platter indeed. This goes along at a good fuzz-drenched garage groove, spitting out spite and vinegar along the way. One of the better of the current attempts by many an outfit to create the ultimate blues/garage hybrid. Okay, I’m a convert. David
@ www.intheredrecords.com

Dan Melchoir – “This is Not the Medway Sound” LP 10/31:00
On this release Dan goes for that “bedroom boogie” sound, trying to create music that still has the feel and attitude of his regular output but subdued enough not to be kicked out by the neighbors. Not to worry though; even if this is not quite as manic as his “usual” work it doesn’t mean that he’s jumped full-on into “mood” music or, worse, “maturity”. Not as full a sound as the Broken Revue (duh) and doesn’t make quite as immediate an impact, but pretty good nevertheless. Only 400 made (vinyl only, suckas) so grab a copy before it’s too late. David
@ www.smartguyrecords.com

Dance Disaster Movement – “We Are From Nowhere” CD 8/39:46
More blasts from (those influenced by) the past, but this isn’t your usual 80s flashback. Danceable (as in what gets played at the local Death Disco) tunes that have a modern “post-punk” feel to them but with more of an edge, along with some more experimental touches and even a tad of Cabaret Voltaire-like drone getting a look in. Imagine a “Disco Not Disco” compilation tailor-made for mutants and you’ll start to get an idea. Not quite up to stellar yet, but pretty good. David
@ www.dimmak.com

Dances With Wolves - “South East” CD 9/30:16
Why would anyone go and name a band “Dance with Wolves?” I’m sure Adrian Finch has his reasons, but it just makes me think of that tedious Kevinostner movie. Anyhow, this is a good little record -- just half an hour long, but full of cool, atmospheric synth-pop tunes. Finch’s voice sounds a little bit like Mark Linkous of Sparklehorse, and he seems to have a similarly moody sensibility. The first track, “Get Inside the Car,” is a gorgeous number about small town life, and “Somewhere Else” is a beautiful, sad lament. DWW, despite its unfortunate name, is one to watch. Kevin
@ www.dcbaltimore2012.com

Daniel Johnston - "Early Recordings, vols. 1 and 2" 2XCD
Love him, hate him, think his rep is overblown in proportion to the actual talent invested, but these low-fi living room tapes are what got the whole ball rolling for our Daniel. Originally privately distributed cassettes titled 'Songs of Pain' and 'More Songs of Pain', accompanying himself on piano (and the occasional background berating by his mother!), Daniel sings about love and heartbreak, tuna ketchup and cigarette butts, along the way essaying rather touching covers of his heroes the Beatles ("I Will") and Bacharach/David ("You'll Never Get to Heaven"). All this and some typically swanky Johnson artwork and kudos by Paul Leary of the Buttholes, this is a raw but engaging snapshot of the artist previous to the seductive beckonings of cult-figure status and mental instability. MLH
@ www.dualtone.com

Danielle French – “Piece” CD 10/40:10
Ah, Calgary, what a wonderful city. Lots of great music comes from there that rarely makes it to the U.S., like Ann Loree and, at one time, Bob Wiseman. Well, add Danielle French to the list. It took her a long time to get this CD out, with the songs written 10 years ago, and basic tracks laid down around 5 years ago. And, in all, the quality of the work that’s been done on it shows. It could have easily have been muddled after all these years, but the quality of Danielle’s voice shines through. She can easily stand beside the likes of Dar Williams, Sarah McLaughlin, and Kate Bush (whose “Running Up That Hill” is covered here). On one cut, “To the Death,” legendary Canadian musician Burton Cummings joins her. Danielle has a strong voice, both vocally and in songwriting, and hopefully this will both put her in the public eye, and help her so we don’t have to wait another 10 years for the sophomore release. RBF
@ scarlett_raven@yahoo.com

Danielle Howle and the Tantrums – “Skorborealis” CD 16/58:19
Countrified singer/songwriter pop-folk-southern-rock-ster Danielle Howle is…let’s see, how can I put this…great. Simple as that. Her voice is both smooth and has a touch of experience that gives her sound a know-how, without being jaded. She’d been compared to k.d. lang, but I think more of a deeper throated Maria McKee. There’s always a surprise on the next cut, which makes you want to hear what’s next. Not one of her songs is fluff, but tells of relationships and life experiences. No filler, but music that’s like a smooth bullet shot of bourbon. Lots of MP3s at her site. RBF
@ Daemon, PO Box 1207, Decatur, GA 30031

Danielson – “Brother is to Son” CD 10/47:00
Danielson, Brother Danielson, Danielson Famile…a number of different incarnations of essentially the same thing; and if Daniel Smith is the one doing the singing, his signature voice is a sure sign that it’s more of the same. Not that that’s a bad thing – I love all things Danielson, and their version of folky-Pixies songs sung through a helium balloon, but they are most certainly not for everyone. They pretty much send my girlfriend into convulsions every time she hears one note of theirs. I suppose the main thing that sets this apart from other Danielson releases is that instead of collaboration with fellow family members, he wrote the entire thing himself and then had them help out in the recording only. This album also features the talents of many already-familiar folks who often pop up on the Danielson releases – Sufjan Stevens, John Ringhofer, and more. If you know what you’re getting into, I highly recommend this album, it’s as good as any of the Danielson’s other work. Jake
@ www.soundsfamilyre.com/soundsfamilyre/df/ MP3 Download

Danny and the Nightmares – “The End is Near Again” CD 7/20:22
A rock project from celebrated outsider Daniel Johnston is a dicey proposition, and to call “The End is Near Again” a mixed bag would be to state the obvious. Johnston roars out of the gate with the genuinely gritty “Natzi”, his wobbly voice bravely battling a rockabilly riot of gritty, garagey guitars. The music remains spare throughout – grimy guitars spitting out a single filthy riff for the entire length of a song. While simplicity is a virtue for some artists, for Johnston it creates monotony. There’s not a whole lot to return to on “The End is Near Again” once the novelty wears off. Johnston proves a surprisingly able vocalist in this setting, but the riffs are too simple and the songs become quickly stale. J Edward
@ www.coolbeans.com

Dao Son For – s/t CD 9/36:32
Take some Apples In Stereo, some Silkworm and maybe a little Navajo Ace and mash it up into a gooey mess and you’ve got a taste of what one song on this elaborate record might sound like. I don’t mean it’s just deirvative because it’s damn inventive as well. “Lee Corado” is out of it’s mind on a cache of psychotropic musical substances. They mix it up into a post –rock paella using instrumentals like “The Crawler”, which borders on Lynch/Badalamenti loung langue, and “La Valencia Hotel”, which moves from a twangy Texas waltz into a Zappa-esque semi-breakdwon. A band like Koufax wishes they had the moxy of this lot. Anthony
@ no address

Darlington - "All The Wrong Moves" CD 10/19:37
Another label, a new drummer, and another fun release of pop punk from the pen and guitar of Christy Brigette Darlington. Pure pop punk; full of hooks and fun lead guitar work, occasionally goofy lyrics, and more than a few songs about girls (or more specifically, one girl on this one, as a few songs are dedicated to a "Lola". They've always taken a cue or two from the Queers "Love Songs" era, and this release is no exception; a fair amount of snot, plenty of hooks, and a lot of fun. The drumming sounds a little off on this, although it might just be the mixing that makes it sound a little thin..still the songs are top notch and there is a nice contender for a good punk rock Christmas song, which the world could always use one more of, which is followed by a song about pooping with the appropriate chorus of "skid marks". Does it get any better than that? Steve
@ www.whoaohrecords.com MP3 Download

Darlington – “Euthanize Me” CD 12/29:58
Is there an issue of Shredding Paper that doesn’t have a review of a Darlington disc? This one has a harder edge to it, with a lot more hardcore chanting chorus stuff on the backing vocals and harsher guitar work than their typical snotty Queers-like sound on a few songs, which I have to say ain’t a bad thing. At least it gives a couple of the songs a few distinguishing characteristics. That’s not to say that Christy Briggette Darlington has gone away from the pop punk thing altogether, there’s still some decent pop punk here, but it seems to be filtered through an angry space; including one song about the powers that be stealing our government from the people. Oh yeah, there are also a couple of classic shy guy pop tunes too. They’ve been at it for a long time at this point, and some of their efforts are pretty uneven, but this one, recorded with the band having never rehearsed the songs before hitting the studio, is has a good raw energy that I like. Steve
@ www.disasterrecords.com

Darren Hanlon – “Hello Stranger” CD 10/39:09
The first song on “Hello Stranger” may be called “Hiccups” but it charmed me completely by mentioning Scrabble and crossword puzzles and having a completely charming melody and vibraphone to go with it. That first song introduced the blueprint for the rest of an album full of charming seemingly-simple pop melodies with nice hooks and intelligent lyrics. There are some slow, wandering moments (“Security Leak”) but beautiful, light melodies and Frida Eklund’s vocals on “Cast of Thousands” more than make up for it. Daren Hanlon provides a breath of fresh Australian air. Pam
@ www.driveinrecords.com

Daryl – s/t CD10/42:43
This is supposed to be part of the current “retro” trend, down to the moniker taken from “the early 80s film about a robotic boy who learns to have feelings, but listening to this I swear I actually had Jones Very flashbacks during some of the songs (maybe it had more to do with the vocalist’s similarities to Vic Bondi during that period, but still…). While the synth window dressing and some of the structures are supposedly “new wave”, there are enough indication to hint at an emo background somewhere in their dark distant past. This does grow on you somewhat, but it never quite delivers the hooks or that special mythical “oomph” that made the original new wave tunes (or their modern-day equivalents) a guilty (or not-so-guilty) pleasure. David
@ www.idol-records.com

Daughters - "Canada Songs" CD 10/11:13
Eleven minutes thirteen seconds is the perfect length of time for taking a dump. This borderline psychotic, Providence, R.I., Butthole Surfer-induced fantasia of grinding NOIZE! is the perfect accompaniment. It isn't something I'd pull out for much of anything else. Wiggles and squeals like an autistic warthog with a hot poker up its ass. Ritalin-deprived drumming is a little too thrashy. Best song title: "I don't give a shit about wood, I'm not a chemist." Anthony
@ www.wearedaughters.com

David Cross – “Shut Up You Fucking Baby!” 2XCD
Hilariously subversive and witty comedy from one of the dudes from “Mr. Show.” I never saw “Mr. Show” when it was around, but judging from this double CD I should go rent some episodes right now! David Cross is political in a hipster way, cutting and smart ass, while being more wry than most stand-up comedians who do political bits. For instance, Robin Williams says a punch line per second when he does politics, but David Cross builds up his skits slowly but surely, like a tea kettle coming to boil. Cross’s bits about executing retarded people, flag vendors, and Gabriel the rollerblader after 9/11 are all stand-out bits that are vicious commentary cloaked in subtlety and bad language. Jesse
@ Subpop, PO Box 20367, Seattle, WA 98102

David Johansen Group - “Live” CD 18/73:12
In July the surviving NY Dolls (thanks to the patronage of Stevens Morrissey and Van Zandt) strapped on their wedgies and trod the boards again, thus reasserting their place in history, as Glam pathfinders and unapologetic purveyors of brilliantly trashy, timeless rock and roll. What better time, then, to bring out this slab of solo David Jo? First issued only to FM rock stations and thus a much sought after grail by collector scum, this zestfully captures the late 70’s Johansen, striving to build on his Dolls rep and make the jump to Bob Seger-level, arena-rock solo status. A flinty band of Five Boroughs spawn - augmented by Syl Sylvain and, for encores, a certain Mr. Thunders - propel Johansen through a set of tunes drawn from his two solo LP’s, with a section of Dolls chestnuts for the faithful and a few non-ironic, campy surprises (love that Sandie Shaw cover). MLH
@ www.lemonrecordings.com

David Rovics – “Behind the Barricades: The Best of David Rovics” CD 21/66:20
If Pete Seeger and Phil Ochs could produce progeny, that would be David Rovics. Seeger would contribute pro-union and peace ideals, and guitar and banjo sounds. Ochs would have added the bitterness, anger, and an occasional touch of sardonic humor. Also, Rovics, at times, sounds alarmingly like Phil, especially the way he introduces the songs. I don’t always agree with his politics (such as his being strongly pro-Palestinian while being anti-“Zionist,” when it’s possible to be both pro for each, and condemn the actions of both), but his songs retain a strength and high moral indignation that is totally respectable. Songs include “Drink of the Death Squads” (about Coca-Cola), “Song for the Earth Liberation Front,” “Henry Ford was a Fascist,” “Who Would Jesus Bomb,” “Operation Iraqi Liberation (OIL)” (which is also the name of an Anti-Flag song). Get it the idea? Somewhere, Phil is smiling. RBF
@ www.daemonrecords.com

Davie Allan & the Arrows - "Restless in L.A." CD 14/40:32
When I was a kid, I loved inhaling the clouds of blue smoke spewed by low-riding Barracudas and primer-coated Mustangs. I only mention this because 1960s instrumental guitar legend Davie Allan is an old hand at creating soundscapes for biker flicks and, well, exhaust is exhaust (though I would've much rather had this be the actual soundtrack to my exhaust-huffing formative years instead of Pat Benatar and Sheena Easton). In addition to a song inspired by spaghetti westerns, there are two vocal tracks, including a cover of the Electric Prunes' "I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night)." For those who care, there's also a re-recording of the theme from "The Wild Angels" but, frankly, I can't imagine how it's better than the original. Lily
@ www.sundazed.com

Dawn Parade - “Caffeine Row” CD 3/13:31
The latest EP from the Dawn Parade is like a bottle rocket - it blasts off brilliantly with the opening title track, but then spends the rest of its time burnt out and tumbling toward the Earth. “Caffeine Row” casts the band as brash Old 97's disciples, but “Wider than the January Skies” sounds like a too-long Dashboard Confessional mess of ham-fisted emotion and plodding melody, and the closer, “Fairytale Rehab`” is a throwaway in every sense of the word. Maybe they’re saving the knockout tracks for the full length, but in the meantime this EP does little to whet the appetite. Ryan
@ www.thedawnparade.com MP3 Download

Day At The Fair – “The Prelude” CD 5/21:33
Another band trying to do the faux-emo thing. I can see all the kids in their horizontal striped shirts bobbing their heads to this stuff; if they aren’t already tired of the same old sound. Song titles can say a lot, and when you have “nilhist”, “homesick” and “anxiety” in the titles of three of the songs on this, you have a pretty good idea that you are headed straight for angst city. Bands like Jimmy Eat World and others have done this kind of thing time and again recently; there’s even an acoustic number at the end of the disc, which was all the rage awhile ago. Time for something new gang. Steve
@ www.springmanrecords.com

Daydream Nation – s/t CD 10/38:42
Despite the outward trappings, these folks seem more like a psych-garage-rock-swirl-pop band disguised as one of dem Shoegazer outfits than anything else. Unfortunately due to a less-than-skilled touch in the studio (managing to make this sound both murky AND overmodulated) this actually ends up sounding more like a demo than a “Finished Product” (ah, the joys of self-production). Still, “Morning Light” single-handedly justifies their existence, and most of the rest of their songs are at least on the solid side. Not the most essential disc of the issue, but I’m intrigued enough to keep an eye on them next around (hopefully they’ll have a better idea on how to best sculpt their sound by then). David
@ www.elephantstonerecords.com

Daze Alone - “Good Music For Bad People” CD 16/62:52
Creed style rock vocals with generic ska music, Daze Alone’s album “Good Music for Bad People” is a combination of rock, metal, funk and ska (self-proclaimed Skacore). The perfect background for a frat party or a summer BBQ with lots of Bud drinking. These guys are clearly talented musicians from diverse backgrounds with a sound that will appeal to some. The tracks range from the fairly standard Ska to an almost metal-like hard rock on “Untrue”. Sharon
@ www.dazealone.com

Dead End Kids – “Demo #1” CD 9/33:05
Demo CD-R from these four really young punk kids – they’re all 14-16 years old. The future hit tune “Captain Pickle” (I’d go for the “Slow” version guys) sounds like they’re either channeling Catholic Discipline or they’ve just learned how to play their instruments. Based on the other 7 tunes and the included live set, I think it’s the latter. But that’s okay, because this is their first demo and, let’s face it, no one sounds good on their first demo. I think the Dead End Kids should gig around and put out a couple more CD-R demos before doing their first 7-inch or CD-EP, but I’m old-fashioned that way. Sonically, this sounds thin, as if they went into a local studio with the house engineer and recorded as much as they could for $200, one take. If I went to their high school, this would be in constant rotation on my CD player, but the rest of us should wait for the next one. Looking forward to it! Jesse
@ DEK Fan Club, POB 33664, Seattle, WA 98133

Dead Heroes – “Let It Ride” CD 17/38:41
A retrospective of this Toledo outfit, with tracks dated from 1998-2002. Musically it’s not bad, kinda like an updated American version of the “mid-period” works of the UKHC of yore; beginning to let up on the speed somewhat, but still faster than what was to come and definitely before said bands began to suck. Lyrically they’re, well, a bit lacking shall we say. Still, while this isn’t anything necessarily groundbreaking, it’ll do for an adrenalin fix if you don’t pay too much attention to the lyrics. David
@ Sin Klub Entertainment, PO Box 2507, Toledo, OH 43606

Dead Kennedys – “Live at the Deaf Club” CD 15/39:24
Unlike the last live album (which was a crap patchwork) this is a document of a single live show (w/ three tracks originally released eons ago on the seminal “Can You Hear Me: Live at the Deaf Club” compilation). Dating from the early day, this apparently was the DK’s last show with second guitarist 6025 before he took off, this release contains early versions of later classics and otherwise unreleased songs plus Jello’s bantering is left in this time as well. It’d be nice if someone could release the complete shows of some of the other bands (especially the pre-No-Alternative KGB, Offs, & Tuxedomoon) from that compilation; not that this is unwelcome but after a while you have to wonder how long they can milk this band before the punters start reacting to new posthumous recordings like they did to Discharge live albums (been there, bought that, moving on). David
@ www.manifesto.com

Dead Meadow – “Got Live If You Want It” CD 8/47:01
Been wanting to hear these guys for a while, just to discover what all the shit was about. The consensus being “heavy in a good way”. This live set starts off with the strident neo-psych chords of “Green Sky, Green Lake”, almost morphing into stoner rock. They change it up a “Everything’s Goin’ On”, a bristling noise rocker that could be the Oblivians channeling Spacemen 3. “Good Moanin’” is a bluesy romp thorugh town with Nikki Sudden and “Sleepy Silver Door” is amalgamated blues rock. The songs are tough but the vocals get a little samey, with a flat intonation. B-. Anthony
@ committee to keep music evil

Dead Meadow – “Shivering King and Others” CD 12/62:12
Okay…how good can one band get? Dead Meadow’s first EP and first full length, “Howls From The Hills”, were pretty darn good but, man!, have these three boys discovered the imminent sounds they have been searching for. “Shivering King And Others” is a full on mind melting album filled with psychedelic, heavy riffage, spaced out vocals and acoustic sovereignties that could be the “crossover” album/band that metal heads like me and indie rock/emo heads like your friends have been looking for. Plenty of Sabbath style, 70s rawk influence to make the doom and “stoner” rock fans go absolutely nutso but laden with wisps and amazing song writing abilities to let everyone else know that rock n roll has taken a step forward but is laid back enough so as you light a few candles or watch the stars as this album flows over you. It is very rare for an album to come along in a music writer’s life to make them jump up and scream: “Holy crap! Guys…you have to listen to this!” Seriously, “Shivering King And Others” has yet to leave my Discman and I’m already annoying my buddies with talk about it and Dead Meadow. All I have to say is wow man. So, wait…I’m gonna play it again… Whittaker
@ www.matadorrecords.com MP3 Download

Deadbeat Sinatra/Put Ons – “Seven and Seven” CD 14/31:05
The Put Ons brings back memories of bands such as the Replacements and a hundred other more obscure outfits whose musick had a punkish sound and feel but didn’t quite have the uniform to fit in with the more-hardcore folks (i.e. very early Reducers, etc). For their part Deadbeat Sinatras make it clear they haven’t relegated their vintage Social Distortion (i.e. up to and including Mommy’s Little Monster) rekkids to the sell pile just yet. Mind you I can’t say either band has the ability to come up with a “Kids Don’t Follow” or “Mommy’s Little Monster/Telling Them” just yet, but it’s still pretty solid stuff indeed. David
@ www.basementrecords.net

Deadline – “Back for More” CD 12/39:30
Pretty decent-to-good energetic street punk with, rarity of rarities, a female lead singer (and a good one at that) in the form of Liz Rose; why can’t more femmes get involved in cranking out their own takes on ye olde Oi/Street-Punk. Worth mentioning that if you stick around long enough you get to experience their version of “Sheena is a Punk Rocker” as a bonus hidden track. David
@ www.captainoi.com

Deadly Snakes – “Ode to Joy” CD 13/39:07
This is a hard record to categorize, and may require a few listens to appreciate fully. It’s definitely got a cool garagey, rockin’ quality, and the vocalist is appealingly snotty. But then these Snakes go and confound expectations by adding horns and saxes to some cuts, or displaying a slow Stones-y vibe with a prominent piano (like on “Playboys”), or offering uptempo hoedowns with handclaps (like “Oh My Bride”). Not that these are necessarily bad things, mind you. These six Canucks clearly have interesting musical roots, and are no doubt trying to capitalize on the current popularity of bluesy garage bands like the White Stripes. Although they may be a tad too eclectic and quirky, either to find a large audience or to appeal to guitar purists such as myself, one has to respect them for being original and pursuing their own unique vision. Jeff
@ www.intheredrecords.com

Dear John Letters - “Stories of our Lives” CD 14/47:26
I’m not afraid to admit that I’m a little snobbish when it comes to my intake of music. So with Dear John Letters, they were already starting off on a bad foot with that name. The CD ended up being better than the name suggested to me, but it’s by no means great. DJL suffer from an affliction known as ‘genre-jumping’; from one song to the next, you never know what you’re going to get – white boy funk? Emo? Power pop? Alt-country? It’s all represented here. The problem with a format like this is twofold – it makes it hard to recommend the disc to someone, and over time it makes it hard to listen to. There are a couple of stand out tracks here in ‘Sorry to Sorry’, a great pop number that I could imagine getting radio airplay if it got heard by the right people; and ‘I Still Scar’, a piano driven, Ben Folds-ish type of track. Unfortunately, there’s not much else I can recommend. Jake
@ www.foodchainrecords.com

Death Cab for Cutie – “Transatlanticism” CD 11/45:45
Despite being one of my favorite bands, Death Cab have routinely failed to produce a career defining record. Prior to this record, they were a brilliant combination of the melancholic pop sensibilities of the Posies and the angular guitar-rock of earlier Built to Spill, often produced wonderfully by guitarist Chris Walla. The band’s quality helped drive the success of Barsuk, their label, which is now a major player on the indie imprint scene. Still, for me, their slick somber guitar pop led to great songs, but slightly disappointing albums that suffered from a lack of cohesion musically and lyrically. I can sleep easy now, though, as Walla, singer-guitarist Ben Gibbard and co. have written a simply transcendent record that’s also easily one of my favorites. By tying in themes of isolation, physical distance, and painful nostalgia, Gibbard's storybook narratives have far more force as a whole than previously. Gone are the trivial songs replete with self-aware thoughts about hating Los Angeles, as Gibbard here goes straight for the heart. The heaviness of "Transatlanticism" is best evinced on the title track, a seven-minute masterpiece evoking beautiful metaphorical imagery to explain physical distance leading to emotional distance. Musically, the production by Walla and vocals by Gibbard saturate every nook of each song with memorable little hooks that fit perfectly - whether it's the piano at the end of the hazy ballad "Lightness" or Gibbard reaching higher notes than ever before on "Passenger Seat." Indeed, it is these small points that give each song that added hint of emotion, of meaning. The only weak point is that the brilliance of the first eight songs renders the last three almost irrelevant in the context of the whole of the record. Scott
@ www.deathcabforcutie.com

Deathray Davies – “Midnight at the Black Nail Polish Factory” CD 14/40:33
More fractured left-of-center garagey pop from folks willing to tweak with the form to see what they can come up with. Some tracks are admittedly either missteps or veer a little too close to ordinary, but most of this is the kind of tuneage that makes you stay past your bedtime because you wanted to listen to “just one more song”, resulting in yet another back catalog to track down. David
@ www.glurp.com MP3 Download

Deathray Davies - "The Day Of The Ray" CD 13/37:19
The third full length for this band, and the first that really incorporates others playing the instruments, as the previous two records, although credited to the "band" were primarily the work of leader John Dufilho. Getting a few other folks in the mix seems to be a good thing though, as this is a pretty rockin' 60's mod/pop/garage feast. The sound on this effort is much like their live gigs, with big guitars on most songs, but also more than a few keyboards used at absolutely the most opportune moments. You can tell from the name of the band and the title of the CD that their sound owes a bit to the Kinks (and the later day Lilys), with lots of melody and fun rockin' harmonies. There are also a few lo-fi moments; such as "Don't Point at the Stoners", which don't work quite as well, but when they stick to the bigger pop sounds, like on "The Aztec God", or on the groovy keyboard heavy "Tainted Love" ripped rocker "The Medication's Gone", you'll think to yourself, "when are they coming to town, because I want to see these guys and dance the night away!". Steve
@ www.idol-records.com

Deerhoof – “Apple O” CD 13/31:20
Deerhoof does my hometown (SF) proud once again, coming up with yet more fractured poptones that don’t shy away from dissonance but manage their fair share of tender and outright stunning moments. A tad more structured than their previous outing perhaps, but be advised that we talking a VERY relative term here. Any posers complaining about the lack of good music in SF, slap this on the turntable and if their jaws don’t drop then boot their asses outta your household pronto! David
@ www.killrockstars.com MP3 Download

Deerhoof - 'Milk Man" CD 11/35:40
Sticker on the front includes blurbs from highbrow journo folk like THE WIRE, yet all I hear when checking this crew out is what a child's idea of 'Progressive Rock' might sound like, given the chance. Still, their Japanese girl singer is not without charm in a post-Cibo Matto sort of way. I also get a kick out of the characteristcally wacky dynamics of a song like "Song Of Sorn", as well as the quiet trip-hoppyness of "Desparecere". The closing tune, "New Sneakers", with its church organ and bells, is as sweet as warm pie. MLH
@ www.killrockstars.com MP3 Download

Defectors – “Turn Me On!” CD 11/37:51
Solid ‘60s garage (with, I think, both Farfisa and Hammond organs, but that’s just a guess) from this Danish five piece: a couple of punchy punky numbers, several stellar spooky tracks, and some that remind me of Smashmouth (but in the way that Smashmouth is catchy, not in the way that they’re annoying and overplayed). Third Defectors album, by the way. Lily
@ www.badafro.dk

Defiance – “A Decade of Defiance, 1993-2003” CD 20/73:55
A spiky-haired, British-style punk/hardcore band from Portland, OR. If you’re into the G.B.H./Casualties’ look, generic anti-government lyrics, a mixture of speedy and medium tempos, and a “two-fingers” F.U. attitude, this is definitely for you. I don’t like the hardcore tracks at all, but they kicked out a few excellent mid-tempo songs, especially on their second and third EPs (like “No Time,” “Fight the Real Enemy,” and “No Future, No Hope”). Jeff
@ www.punkcore.com

Defiance - "Out of the Ashes" CD 11/34:41
The Punk Core label is much like the Fat Wreck label, in that they seem to put out a lot of bands which sound exactly the same. Where Fat Wreck often issues weak new skool pop crap, Punk Core churns out one street punk clone after another. Defiance has a bit more talent than some of the other acts in the Punk Core stable, but the formula remains. Society sucks, the world sucks, you suck--and damn, look how high my liberty spikes are! Mark
@ Punk Core, PO Box 916, Middle Island, NY 11953

Delgados - “Hate” CD 12/56:08
There are few moments in recent pop history as astonishing as the one where the strings kick in at the beginning of The Delgados third record. Those torrid, tense bursts of sound slam the door on the Delgados tender past, allowing the Scottish outfit to retain all the accoutrements of the fantastic “The Great Eastern” while infusing them with new urgency and need. “Hate” is a giant leap forward, a record brimming with loss, pain, anger and regret. The Delgados ability to craft sturdy songs has swollen to master class level - the wry “All You Need is Hate” nestles a sharp, cynical sentiment in the center of pizzicato strings and music box twinkling. “Coming in From the Cold” goes Technicolor on the chorus, organ notes dropping like falling stars around Emma’s sweet, sad voice. Credit producer Dave Friddman if you must, but it’s obvious that The Delgados are geniuses in their own right. “Hate” is their definitive statement. J Edward
@ www.beggars.com

Delmonas - "Do the Uncle Willy" CD 14/35:55
Three British gals made a right racket back in the early '80s with the help of Billy Childish and Thee Milkshakes; one of those vixens would later become a Headcoatee. Luckily for you Get Hip's keeping the Delmonas' hip-swiveling action alive with this welcome reissue of catchy, lo-fi '60s garage (including a Stooges cover, among others) that rivals the entire collection of "Girls in the Garage" comps. Lily
@ www.gethip.com

Demonics – “Ritual on the Beach” LP 12/35:00
Never mind that wussy 180g shit, this is 220g vinyl bay-bee, and feels like it! Third full-lengther featuring one foot in the surf promised on the cover but spends most of their time in the world of rock, with Nikki Corvette herself showing up on a remake of her “Boys Like Me”. Solid, though it could use some more drive or better-developed hooks in spots. Best advice I could give for next time around is to focus less on the rock and go full on surf/drag, since that seems to be where their talents lie. David
@ www.aliensnatch.de

Demons – “Stockholm Stump” CD 12/34:43
Second album of steamrolling punk-fucking-rock, Swedish style. There are a few places where they seem like they’re about to drift into the dreaded rawk arena if they’re not too careful, but otherwise this is yet another recommended dosage of hi-octane rock-n-roll. Another goodie from your friends at Gearhead. David
@ www.gearheadrecords.com

Denise James – “It’s Not Enough To Love” CD 10/35:42
Groovy tunes from this French native, who grew up in Detroit listening to the mod sounds of the 60’s like Francoise Hardy and 60’s soul and puts them to good use on this, her second full length. Her first was on Alan McGee’s Poptones label and this follow up has all the rich styles of twee-ish indie pop mixed with a groovy lo-fi vibe that channels Petula Clark and Hardy. Produced by Matthew Smith of Outrageous Cherry, the guitars on some songs are full of Mersey beat jangle, and other songs cross them with balladeer fuzziness that remind one of Nico. I personally like the songs that pick the jangle up a little more, with “Love Has Left Me Crying Again” being the perfect example of a great James song. Great hooks, a magical guitar sound, with a singer at the top of her game and showing it off by juxtaposing some of the bouncy melody with a great world weary vocal style. I totally dig this disc, and any fan of great pop should as well. Steve
@ www.rainbowquartz.com

Denison Witmer/River Bends – “…And Flows Into the Sea” CD 11/40:39 Philadelphia singer-songwriter Denison Witmer is known for his emotional, melancholic and affecting songs and on this project he shines like a fucking diamond in a field full of dogshit (which describes a lot of the current music world). This outfit, which includes members of Witmer’s band One Star Hotel, makes heartbreakingly beautiful little gems out of what could well be just nuggets of coal in the hands of more ham-fisted types. I was expecting some sap to drip from the speakers but instead it’s pure liquid gold with gorgeous tunes like “Looking For You”, “I Love You April” and especially the teary-eyed “Are You Lonely?” which is one of those rare songs that grabs you and just won’t let go. The first time I played this it fairly knocked me out, the second time it hammered me with its sorrowfully uplifting demeanor. A rare find among what is sometimes the dreary “whoa-is-me, aren’t-I-sensitive” stable of present-day singer-songwriter types who dominate the sub-genre. Stunning. Anthony
@ www.toothandnail.com

Deniz Tek and the Golden Breed – “Glass Eye World” CD 10/37:35
A collaboration between legendary Radio Birdman guitarist Deniz Tek and professional skateboarders Art and Steve Godoy (also of The Exploding Fuck Dolls), “Glass Eye World” hews closer to a punk rock aesthetic than The New Christs, the side project of Tek’s fellow Birdman Rob Younger. The record is the expected hybrid of Tek’s myriad influences – a flourish of surf here, a smattering of glam rock there – all of it funneled through punk sensibilities. Trouble is, the songs never quite take off the way they should. The production is thin, muting guitars that ought to be ferocious and making the songs feel curiously underplayed and underfelt. Tek is still a cunning songwriter, but with The Golden Band it feels like his muse is not getting the proper output. “Flight 18”, with it’s stop-start chorus and insistent chugging bassline frequently aches to explode, but never manages more than a subtle pop. “What’s It For”, which is the closest relative to anything Birdman, sounds lopsided, Tek’s voice disproportionately clear in the mix. “Glass Eye World” ends up being amiable and interesting, but not especially inspiring – a shame considering the ingredients. J Edward
@ www.careerrecords.com

Deniz Tek & Scott Morgan – “3 Assassins” CD 14/63:24
In 2001, two guitarists from Michigan who helped shape punk, garage, and rock in the ‘70s (Tek=Radio Birdman, Morgan=Sonic’s Rendezvous Band) joined forces and toured Italy and France with a competent, young rhythm section. This live recording is proof that they’ve kept their Motor City edge X-Acto-knife sharp: a tight performance captured with excellent, studio-worthy sound levels. Fans of Tek and/or Morgan won’t be disappointed. Still, I would’ve preferred being treated to new songs rather than having the two 1) dust off tunes they wrote ages ago while in other bands or for solo projects, and 2) crank out MC5 and Stooges covers. Lily
@ www.careerrecords.com

Dennis Most and The Instigators - “Wire My Jaw” CD 15/48:29
Dude, these guys look like BTO all done up Jersey style with handlebar moustaches and feathered hair. So I was kind of expecting a “Taking Care of Business” type sound but what we get here is a total garage punk indication of what the MC5 would sound like if members of Hawkwind were to plow through. Loud and fast and real simple but rocking enough to show everyone down at the drag strip what a true manly man you are…or could be. Dennis’ voice is a psychedelic snotty rechord that chimes well with the chunky riffs and tinny drums pounding in a Ramones slog through. In a sense, this is true rock and roll. Basic, ugly, fun and totally necessary in its working class disposition and jaunting roots from whence Sabbath and The Stooges all arose from. I also liked the sleazy aspect of The Instigators, which will scare all of the teenage girls in the crowd because of their tight trousers and armadillos. Otherwise, bellbottoms and mullets are optional… Whittaker
@ www.dionysusrecords.com

Dents/Street Dogs – “Round One” CD 4/12:28
Each Boston punk band does one from their respective debut records, and 1 exclusive track. The Dents are a rockin’ female-fronted melodic punk band, think Tilt with a little more balls. Street Dogs feature the original Dropkick Murphys singer – the guy who sounds like Archie Bunker – and pump out similar sing along heart-felt tough punk. Their new record on Crosscheck Records, “Savin Hill,” is on my list of candidates for best punk record of 2004 already, and their unreleased tune does not disappoint. The Dents are rad enough that I’ve gotta find their full-length; go Boston! Jesse
@ www.abbeylounge.com

Descendents – “Cool To Be You” CD14/36:26
After seven years Milo returns and the Descendents banner is dragged out and displayed proudly once again. They’re still their ol’ lovable caffeine-fueled selves, with a new wrinkle here and there. They even come up with an effective political song in “’Merican”, though anyone fearing they’ve fallen prey to “maturity” will be relieved to hear that they’re still capable of incorporating flatulence bits (at the end of “Blast Off”, appropriately enough) into their works. If it doesn’t quite make the impact that “Everything Sucks” did I’ll still take this over 95% of their bastard pop-punk offspring (and 99.7% of the ALL catalog) anyday. David
@ www.fatwreck.com

Descendents - "'Merican" CD 4/15:12
When I put this on, someone said, "oooh, they sound just like Blink-182!". AAAUUGHGHGH! The Descendents have only put out one full length release in the last 15 or so years, but this short EP is a prelude to a full length due later this year. They've influenced countless bands over the years, from the wave of pop punk bands like Green Day and the rest of the Lookout! stable that came out in the late 80's to the Blink-182, Good Charlotte, and Sum 41's of today. And even though it's been 7 years since their last full length, they've lost none of the swagger that made them great back in the day. A couple of tracks from the forthcoming full length, including a typically Descendents let's have fun doing nothing song and the title track to this release, about the conflicts inherent in being an American these days, plus two others. Listen up kids, these guys still do it better than you. Steve
@ www.fatwreck.com MP3 Download

Desert City Soundtrack – “Contents of Distraction” 7/30:15
More of that post-emo, Deep Elm style. Sometime it sounds like they’re trying to follow in labelmates Appleseed Cast’s footsteps in hopes of creating their own “Low Level Owl”, other tracks almost sound like they’re trying to channel the spirits of Black Heart Procession (especially when the piano kicks in) via the Deep Elm filter. Sounds promising enough, but their reach ends up exceeding their grasp. Not bad, but doesn’t even touch the aforementioned groups. David
@ www.deepelm.com

Desert Fathers- “The Spirituality” CD 10/29:03
Polvo is one of my top five favorite bands to ever exist; and any band that can merit a comparison to them, is indeed a great band worthy of checking out. The Desert Fathers sound like the bastard stepchild of Polvo and early-nineties era Flaming Lips, equal parts poppy-psychedelica and twisted, strangely tuned guitars. There’s something so intoxicating about that bending guitar sound, and this album is chock full of it. For those who are keeping score and care, it was produced/recorded/whatever by Steve Albini. This is most certainly a sleeper hit of the year in my book. Jake
@ www.thedesertfathers.com MP3 Download

Desoto Reds – “Hanglide Thru Yer Window” CD 14/48:54
More screwball, Elephant 6-inspired pop from here in the Bay Area, but it’s tough not to like this. The level of whimsy involved in this record probably surpasses even old Of Montreal, and it does verge on crossing the line into “annoying land” a time or two, but it never actually gets there. The whole record has a very summery feel, and it’s somewhat interesting that anything like this could come out of the monotonic climate that is their home. Nonetheless, it’s a decent, catchy listen that makes me wish I had a convertible and some warm weather in which to properly utilize this CD. Jake
@ www.desotoreds.com/ MP3 Download

Destroyed - "Outta Control" CD 20/54:03
A "reunion" of two members of the Destroyed (Bert Switzer and JD Jackson), extant from '77-'79. They do six new songs and include ten unreleased vintage tracks. Avant-guitar artist Henry Kaiser guests on two songs. Among the new stuff, "Let's Go Electric" and "1-2-3" have a minimalist tint with tuneless vocals. The songs with Kaiser are Zappa-esque noise guitar with crazy drums. The old stuff is crude basement muck with distorted vocals, and it holds up well. "War Planes", "We Need a New World" and the horribly recorded "Jump Bad." are proof that good anti-music takes many forms yet remains timeless. Anthony
@ www.bertswitzer.com MP3 Download

Destruction Made Simple - "Terror Stricken Youth" CD 12/39:22
This is straight up hardcore punk with a lot to say. The approach is simple but effective. The drums roll and slam, the guitars ring out with a dire sound, vocals are angry and intense. "The End", "Saint Jude", "Trouble with Chaos", these are blunt-edged, basic tunes, shoved in your face with a magnificent ferocity. Short songs, dark images, and brilliant playing, this is one hell of a manic, kickass record. Mark
@ www.a-frecords.com MP3 Download

Destruction Unit – “Self Destruction of a Man” CD 10/27:50
Yet another Lost Sounds side-project, this time featuring Jay and Alicia. Think of the dark-wave of the parent outfit with a greater injection of punk energy and aggression, reaching hardcore-velocity at times. Wouldn’t say this is anything to give up the day job for (it could have used a bit more melody, hidden or otherwise, at times), but a promising debut nevertheless. David
@ www.emptyrecords.com

Detachment Kit – "Of This Blood" CD 14/39:52
It’s no secret these guys sound a lot like Les Savy Fav; now, they’ve taken that one step further by putting out their newest release “Of This Blood” on their label. For their sophomore effort, they parlayed that sound with a slightly more mainstream “indie” influence on some tracks, recalling groups such as the Walkmen or former Self-Starter label-mates Haywood. This blend really works for them I think – still spazzy enough to appeal to the already established fan base, but with a broad enough appeal to attract outsiders who might not have otherwise considered them. Comparisons aside, this is a very enjoyable record that I’m sure will see a number of spins on my stereo. Jake
@ www.detachmentkit.com MP3 Download

Deviants – “Dr. Crow” CD 10/46:01
In the rock family tree the Deviants occupy a unique position. Leader Mick Farren was a founding member of the Pink Fairies and the original Social Deviants. He is also a novelist, comic book publisher and raconteur. The Deviants’ 1984 cult record, “Human Garbage” remains one of those much-talked about/never seen masterpieces. Farren’s been in LA since the early 90s and this is a rare reunion of this band. They’ve mastered their own brand of tripped-out psych rock and can manage any style. There’s a seven minute duet of “You’re Gonna Need Somebody On Your Bond” with Concrete Blondes’ Johnette Napolitano. “Bela Lugosi 2002” is almost a re-working of “Pablo Picasso”. Not something you’d pull out everyday but another legit piece in the Farren puzzle. Anthony
@ www.trackrecords.tv

Devil Music – “Mastful” CD 6/34:05
Mostly-instro outfit, utilizing that ol’ post-krautrock-drone, some desert musings, a violinist borrowed from either Roxy Music or one of the better prog outfits, and occasional bursts of unfortunate vocals. While good for a surface listen, they’re not exactly breaking as much new ground as they probably think they are, getting dangerously close to prog at times; despite some good ideas nothing here really gels enough to reward repeat listenings. A failed experiment at a post-electronica soundscape caps the whole affair. David
@ www.misterrecords.com MP3 Download

Devolver - "Sky Full of Holes" CD 14/48:51
I could describe the music of Devolver in the following ways in any of the following ways: My Bloody Valentine discovers laptop-tronica; Tram getting a little more excited than usual; what if the Beta Band got put on downers? Anyways, I think the general idea is guitar driven, feedback-oriented rock with an electronic beat bent and British pop song sensibilities. For the most part, it’s a decent record although it runs a little longer than I might like, but that’s not much of a complaint. Anytime a Canadian produces something that isn’t Rush or Barenaked Ladies, I have to salute them. Jake
@ www.scratchrecords.com

Dexateens - s/t CD 13/38:37
This is country-punk rock n roll with a little kick and a lot of attitude. The first track is pure honky tonk, while the second leans more toward the bluesy side. Neither offers much in the way of excitement. However, track three, "Cherry", slams in solid, at last getting this record off the ground. Things stay pretty strong from there out, but nothing really makes this a must have. For folks who like twang and punk mixed, it's cool. Not essential, but cool. Mark
@ www.estrus.com

Dexter Romweber – “Blues That Defy My Soul” CD 14/32:18
As far as I’m concerned, Dexter Romweber can do no wrong. This half of Chapel Hill’s legendary (and sadly defunct) Flat Duo Jets is one of a jugful of contemporary musicians who has the ability to craft exceptional rockabilly/blues/country tunes that transcend the whole time issue – something many modern artists of the genres fail at to a cheesy degree. It’s like Romweber’s soul is imbued with the essence of Screamin’ Jay, Eddie Cochran, and Johnny Cash. The music on this album would fit right into a 1950s jukebox, but at the same time you wouldn’t hear him crooning about taking his gal to the picture show or meeting her at the record hop. Do yourself a favor: Pick this up and prepare to testify to Romweber’s genius. Lily
@ www.yeproc.com

Dickies – “Live in London” CD 19/46:38
I think this is a re-re-release of the live disc that Taang put out back in 1990. Dick and Leonard (as well as two other folks who are long gone) partake in the usual melodic punk goofiness that they’re known and loved for the world over, with classic tunes such as “Stuck in a Pagoda (with Tricia Toyota)” and “Manny, Moe, & Jack” trotted out once again for the benefit of the Brits. As usual with these live thing this isn’t the most essential release in the band’s discography, but with good sound and a respectable batch of songs on offer, it’s a nice souvenir for fans (note: what’s listed as being “Curb Job” on the sleeve is actually “Doggie Doo”). David
@ www.sanctuaryrecordsgroup.co.uk

Dickies – “Stukas Over Disneyland” CD 8/20:35
Reissue of the ‘83 release from the Dickies, split among 2 different lineups 3 years apart, but sounding like it was recorded in a single session. If not as consistently stellar as the previous “Dawn of the Dickies” (A few of these could be mistaken for outtakes from said release) it still has more than its share of fine moments (standards such as “If Stuart Could Talk” and “She’s a Hunchback” can be found here) and was their last shining moment before entering a very long creative dry spell. David
@ www.overground.co.uk

Die Hunns – “Long Legs” CD 15/39:44
Corey Parks/Nashville Pussy and Duane Peters/U.S. Bombs have left those bands and reorganized Duane’s side project The Hunns as Die Hunns. “Long Legs” features some great covers (Chamber Brothers “Time Has Come Today” and The Wipers “Tragedy”), some new originals, and some rockin’ re-recordings of Hunns standards. The Hunns were always slightly more rock than the capital “P” Punk of the U.S. Bombs, and the addition of a founding member of Nashville Pussy cements the crunchiness of the guitars and the song structures. Different tempos and the occasional odd instrument helps broaden this band’s delivery a bit, although it’s mostly fast tempo punky stuff. Duane sounds more and more like a hoarse Keith Morris- this rocks because you can actually understand most of the words without referring to a lyric sheet. Good thing, since there is no lyric sheet here. Not that Corey doesn’t belt out the tunes as well - her voice shreds paint like a young Joan Jett! Overall, this is a rockin’ punk record which should appeal to both the US Bombs fans and the Nashville Pussy fans- a rip-roarin’ record! Jesse
@ Disaster, PO Box 7112, Burbank, CA 91510

Die Monitr Batts – “Youth Controllers” CD 9/14:36
More of that art-punk/no-wave influenced tuneage with male and female vox, making good use of a saxophone and managing to make more racket in under 15 minutes than most self-conscious avant-rock fugs can crank out in 60. This is what bands like Inflatable Boy Clams, et al. SHOULD have sounded like back in the day. Hard to believe that this features 2 members of the fairly-dissimilar Gossip, but there you go. David
@ www.dimmak.com

Die Zorros – “History of Rock Vol. 7” CD 16/41:54
Post-surf/rockabilly (mostly) instrumentals from Switzerland, some in the spaghetti western vein, others of which you’d expect to find on the better Joe Meek compilations (especially when they break out that ol’ Farfisa organ). They mix in several “done-as-if-we-wrote-them-ourselves” covers, some of which are surprisingly credible (“Stairway to Heaven”, Europe’s “Final Countdown”), others don’t quite escape the taint of novelty. The only times they stumble is when they utilize vocals (whether as singing or vocalizing along to the music) which are ill-fitting at best, clumsy at worst. A bit of a mixed bag, but there are enough solid-to-good tunes such as “Der Lachende Sarg” to make this worth checking out. David
@ www.voodoorhythm.com

Dilute/Hella – “Live” 2XCD
Two more bands captured at the Bottom of the Hill and the Capitol Garage respectively. Dilute sounds like early Felt and/or post-math-rock played at 45, depending on the song in question, and that ain’t a bad thing. Hella of course goes for a more house-rocking approach, doing/cranking out the avant-spazz-postnewprog-whatever-rock they do so well with just a guitar and drums. David
@ www.sickroomrecords.com

Dipers – How to Plan Successful Parties” CD 7/20:36
Oooh yeah, gritty West Coast Punk Rock with a capital PR. Not pop-punk like Green Day, but real makes-you-wanna-curse punk rock. I don’t quite know what to call this other than intelligent noise. The last several minutes of the last song on this too-short-album I could do without. I’m not a fan of feedback and fuzz for the sake of feedback and fuzz. Sharon
@ www.omnibusrecords.com

Diplomats - "Instrumental Action Soul" CD 13/43:50
What is it that so many of these hipster instro bands have to over-produce their records? With the exception of the Fucking Champs, who frankly bore the shit out of me, bands like this usually feel the need to recreate the warm and creamy sounds of 60s instrumental stuff. Why? I'd like to hear one of them do some seriously no-fi sludge noise. Diplomats' shtick is bouncy, jazzy, quasi-surfy and is driven by Nate Basinger's Hammond organ. They're adequate as a Holiday Inn lounge act but you might as well go back to the real thing if you need a fix like this. Anthony
@ bscepter@avalon.net

Diplomats Of Sound - "Let’s Cool One" CD 12/34:08
Iowa City quartet kicks out post-MG’s/Meters jams, perfect for accompanying the creation of a big boss dance line. Nate ‘Count’ Basinger’s hefty Hammond B3 chops are well showcased on such tunes as the tres Sixties slowjerk of “Who’s Got The Grady?” and a cover of Sly Stone’s “You Can Make It If You Try”, while others like “Shadow Of Your Soul” and the slinkadelic “My Place BBQ” find guitarist Doug Roberson holding up his Cropperesque end in winning fashion. I dig the Nawlins syncopation of “Ribsticker”, as well as Diplomat dips into Northern Soul and JB (specifically his organ-led, rare groove instrumental sides) territory on tunes like “Pistol Allen” and “Don’t Touch My Popcorn”. Proof in advertising for once: this is a cool one. MLH
@ www.estrus.com MP3 Download

Dirt Bike Annie - "It Ain't Easy Being Single (Vinyl EPs and Rarities)” CD 41/77:09
This contains all of the hard to find stuff by one of the best pop punk bands around, plus a few previously unreleased tracks. DBA has been around since the mid-90's and helped define an underground pop punk sound that helped propel labels like Mutant Pop to the forefront of the scene at a time when pop punk was being co-opted by the major labels via Blink 182 and others. These songs have hooks galore, great lyrics, dynamic boy/girl vocals with fun harmonies and as much in common with power pop bands like the Rubinoos as the Ramones. You can hear their development form a standard 3 chord band to one that incorporated more mature arrangements both musically and vocally. The lyrics never change much, but the humor is there from the beginning, so why change? Included among the songs is the "Summer Tour 2000 Cover EP", which shows off covers ranging from the more obvious ("Debaser" by the Pixies) to the funny (Patty Smyth's "The Warrior"). A must have for fans of the band, because there are plenty of unreleased songs on here, and a must have for people that haven't heard the band before, because is just plain ol' FUN!, and that's something that's far too often missing these days. Steve
@ www.dirtnaprecs.com

Dirtbike Annie – “Show Us Your Demons” CD 13/37:58
Seattle punk stronghold label Dirtnap Records sets its sights on the New York scene, which is “red hot right now!” (or so I’ve been told) and brings back something the Big Apple is definitely not known for: revved up West Coast pop-punk. No tricks up any sleeves in this case – the band is spirited, full of energy, and guy/girl shared vocals carry the record from chorus to chorus to endless chorus as they rock out hi-fi studio punk rock. Most of these riffs are just about primed for retirement or some type of extended vacation, but then what would cute, young bands play in this day and age? Xtian
@ www.dirtnaprecs.com

Dirtbombs - "Dangerous Magical Noise" CD 13/37:05
Like his other projects, the Gories and the Screws, Mick Collins' Dirtbombs have never feigned corporate aspirations, instead opting for rugged trash rock via psychosonic soul, or is it the other way around? This third installment in the plan is the best Dirtbombs record yet. Tough, tight catchy and ground down to the barest essentials. "Start The Party", "Get It While You Can", "Don't Break My Heart" and "I'm Through With White Girls", the hits just keep on comin'. A band that is continuing to discover itself, and one of Timebomb Tom's faves. Anthony
@ www.intheredrecords.com

Dirtmitts - “Get On” CD 10/38:50
The Dirtmitts have catchy hooks with a heavy fuzzy sound, and they have two girl singers, appealing to guys and girls alike. Their simple lyrics are easy to listen to, with melodies that you could swear you already know. Reminiscent of bands like Veruca Salt, and ready for airplay, this little group is going to do just fine. Pam
@ www.sonicunyon.com

Dirtshakes – “Return to Boomsfeeldeliah” CD 16/36:36
Dirtshakes finally hit CD format, collecting tracks from various 10 and 7 inches and compilations. Punk with a melodic edge (emphasis on “edge”) who look more to the Ramones and the Queers for inspiration (though I detected some Jon Von-era Mr. T Experience as well) than what’s in the racks of Hot Topic (previously unreleased Radio Birdman & Angry Samoans covers give further indications as to where their roots lay), managing to be spunky as well as poppy. It also comes with eight video clips, but whenever I tried to play them on the computer (and I tried more than one) the unit I was on got tweaked. Hmm. David
@ www.valve-records.com

Dirty Water – s/t CD 7/16:51
Emerging from the ashes of the Ducky Boys and other Beantown streetpunk and hardcore bands, Dirty Water – presumably named after the great Standells’ ‘60’s hit – present a new round of would-be anthems to the lads to go along with their drinks. I don’t know why but I wasn’t expecting all that much, so this far exceeded my expectations. “It Starts With You” is an outstanding in-your-face streetpunk anthem, and the rest of their material features a highly-appealing combination of hook-filled and compelling songwriting, electric and acoustic guitar interplay, Celtic-sounding melodies, and emotive lead vocals. Really, really good stuff. I prefer not to think about the band’s supposed 250-strong “street team,” though. Jeff
@ www.streetanthemrecords.com

Discipline – “Rejects of Society” CD 16/54:40
Well-done Oi outta Belgium. Not particularly out of the ordinary or exciting, but alright if you want a solid, unassuming Oi record. Think Blitz, and there ya go. This is a compilation of tracks from three full-lengths and some cover tunes, a Social Distortion and a Business tune. I believe this is intended as an introduction to the band for US skinheads, but I think once you’ve heard one gruff British Oi band, you’ve heard Discipline. Jesse
@ Captain Oi c/o PO Box 501, High Wycombe, Bucks, HP10 8QA UK

 Discipline/Argy Bargy – “100% Thug Rock” CD 12/37:12
This split CD between the German band Discipline and the British band Argy Bargy is definitely 100% thug rock, a.k.a. Oi. I wish all the punk kids who are naively mixing their Oi and their Mohican punk would listen to these bands so they can understand what Oi is. It’s blunt, violent, and simple-minded. Neither band breaks the traditional 81 UK Oi mold musically or lyrically. Me, I love a good Oi band musically, and on this split Discipline adds a little vocal melody to the otherwise traditional delivery. They’re a lot punchier than Argy Bargy, who should just become a Blitz cover band and ditch the originals on here. Speaking of covers, there’s a number here from Agnostic Front, the Stranglers, and the Cockney Rejects (do we really need another version of “War on the Terraces”?). Both bands cover each other’s songs also. Of these, Argy Bargy covers a rad Discipline tune called “Hooligans Heaven” which I bet Discipline does great. Argy Bargy don’t make it their own, although the song’s inherent catchiness comes through anyway. If you want some current overseas thugs (er, skinheads) channeling “Voice of a New Generation”, check out Argy Bargy. If you want a little deviation (though not much) from the genre, check out Discipline. Jesse
@ www.captainoi.com

Diskords – “Blame It On The Kids” CD 13/27:02
The first full length from these Portland, OR area teen punks (they’re all in high school) and this is what a young punk band should be all about. Loose guitars, snotty vocals, a “we’re making a shitload of noise” production style, and nifty punk lyrics and song titles. How can you not dig a song called “We’ve Come For Your Children”, “Heart Full of Napalm”, and “I Could Love You If I Didn’t Hate You”. Staight outta ’77 with their rapid fire 1-2-3-4 style of punk, this is great fun, full of unbridled energy and snarl and adds just the right mix of melody. This fits right in with anything on a KBD comp. Steve
@ www.vinylwarning.com

Distraction – “Calling All Radios“ CD 14/26:46
Orange County punk, but don’t expect any Adolescents wannabes here. Not as “new-wave” retro as some led me to believe; though it does take some cues from the days when the pogo was still in vogue, it builds up from there until you end up with more modern-day energetic garagey punk rock. Solid enough; not as good as the Epoxies, but definitely better than the Gloryholes or the Briefs’ last seven inch. Worth a gander. David
@ www.dirtnaprecs.com

Divine Comedy - "Absent Friends" CD 11/45:58
After reviewing mediocre records all day, hearing Neil Hannon's latest effort seems a refreshing work of simple genius. His gorgeous symphonic pop remains a perfect backdrop for his cool dramatic voice (at times reminiscent of good old Sinatra) and his lyrics, full of sad truths and fantastic scenarios (matched only by Morrissey and Stephin Merritt). Enough said...if I were you, I'd put down this magazine right now and run out for a copy of Absent Friends. I promise you won't be disappointed. Mona
@ www.thedivinecomedy.com

Dollar Canon - “Future Apartments EP” CD 5/16:43
The music on the Future Apartments EP is great: melodic, slow and wandering with lots of edgy guitar and yearning male vocals. Yet each time I listened to this CD, I couldn’t remember a single tune. In fact, it’s a bit difficult to tell one song from the other with the arching guitar plucking along with each vocal track. Pam
@ www.lamplighrecordings.com

Don’t Look Down – “Five” CD 5/14:58
This should be called “Don’t Look Now, You’ve Got Shit in Your Stereo.” Mostly loud guitar alt-punk, what the kids are calling emo nowadays. I almost (note the word almost) wish emo still just meant Fugazi, Dag Nasty, and a dozen other D.C. bands. Actually, yes, yes I do wish emo meant those bands still- as much as I dislike the genre- and bands like this were called utter crap, because that’s what bands like this are. Fugazi may be many things, but they are hacks. Y’know, the members of Don’t Look Down may be great guys, they may help little old ladies cross the street, but boy is this by-the-numbers. Includes enough earnest acoustic strumming on the sensitive last tune to make all Used groupies sopping wet. Which is pretty creepy, considering how young those groupies are, blech! Jesse
@ Nitro, 7071 Warner Avenue #F736, Huntington Beach, CA 92647

Donovan - "The Essential Donovan" CD 14/47:37
Donovan is indeed an essential part of any collection. Although Belle & Sebastian owe a lot to Nick Drake, Donovan seems their most important 60s influence. Starting out as the British answer to early Dylan, Donovan branched out into folk-pop and psych. Groundbreaking singles like "Wear Your Love Like Heaven", Hurdy Gurdy Man", "Epistle To Dippy", "There Is a Mountain" still bristle with originality that seems as remarkable today as the day they were first released. Fans of B & S should definitely pick this up! Mel
@ www.sonymusic.com/essentials

Door and the Window – “Detailed Twang” CD 23/69:22
Reissue of this experimental (and that’s not just in regards to a genre) band’s 1980 album, as well as period single and compilation tracks. If they were around today their merits would be praised and/or argued over in your local music-discussion group, but back then there were very few folks able to comprehend, much less appreciate what they were doing. Depending on where the laser lands you’ll be confronted with anything from an early Fall on stronger drugs, one of the more outré vintage Mute bands (Normal, early Fad Gadget, Robert Rental/Thomas Leer), or sounds that could have fit alongside Throbbing Gristle and early SPK (albeit minus said outfits’ lyrical preoccupations) without anyone batting an eyelid. Of course there are also some tracks that are questionable, self-indulgent, or outright failures (having ATV’s Mark Perry – not known for an encouraging track record regarding similar experiments– join the lineup for the album may not have been the wisest in decisions). Still, there are enough intriguing pieces to make this worth checking out. David
@ www.overgroundrecords.co.uk

Dot.commies – “Hellfire Recordings” CD 9/31:58
At first glance you’d think this album was a sort of heavy rawk attack, or maybe even some new style electro bling-bling, what with this fancy red sports car on the front and messed up pictures of ol' Gorbachev rocking the back along with plenty of Hammer/Sickle symbols too. I don’t know, it looked more arty than punk. But trust me here kids, the dot.commies play super charged punk but are a few steps above the lot because they have the ingenuity to allow flow and amazing breakdowns to happen among the quick beats and raspy vocals by Doug Clark. Not to mention, but I totally fell in love with this song “Parlez Vous Asskick” because the tune absolutely rocks and has such a good chorus I almost phoned my buddy Kevin to say “hey man…have you heard of these guys?” But I didn’t. It was late and he lives 500 miles away. But hopefully you’ll hear of them now. Bitches!!! Whittaker
@ www.dotcommiesmusic.com

Doug Powell – “Venus DiMilo’s Arms” CD 4/15:26
Powell rose to public awareness, such as it is, under Todd Rundgren’s tutelage. From those roots, he has gone the powerpop route, to the extreme. This stuff is so glossy, it feels like he brought a zamboni into the studio with him. There’s lots of incredible hooks, sing-a-long-ability, and top musicianship. Still, it left me just a little conflicted. On one hand, there was the ‘60s psych-influence that runs through the sound, along with a definite cheeriness. The conflict comes from the sheer saccharine sweetness and exceedingly high production values. The lyrics are sometimes obtuse (“The sky is falling, Elvis knew/That’s why nuns sniff super glue”). There are lots of people who love this sound. If it was just a tad rougher, I might, as well. RBF
@ www.wizzard-in-vinyl.com

Doughboys – “La Maujeure 1987” CD 3/11:00
Montreal is quite the punk city, and has been since the ‘70s. These three pieces are demos dating back to the late ‘80s. And for demos, the sound is quite clear. Their sound reminds me of the Neighborhoods, who hailed from Boston. Biting forward mixture of punk and rock, with some pop influence prevail throughout. Though starting with the weakest cut, the second two more than make up for that. In fact, makes it worth the price. Good enough to not mind that “I Remember” lasts for 5:14. RBF
@ www.scamidny.com

Douglas Dillard – “The Banjo Album” CD 12/33:33
Reissue of Doug’s debut album from ’69. While definitely not cutting with tradition, Dillard expanded his sound by utilizing such decidedly non-traditional instruments as harpsichord and tablas. Instead of a novelty-driven or exotica-goes-country approach though, Dillard seamlessly incorporated said instruments into his sound so they seemed like natural ingredients instead of coming off as some misbegotten fusion gunk. If the “No Depression/alt-country folks” went back beyond “Sweethearts of the Rodeo”/Gram Parsons and started taking cues from this as well, we’d all be better off. David
@ www.revola.co.uk

Down to Nothing - "Save It For The Birds" CD 11/33:16
These five guys all dressed in black are pissed off about something man. What is it? I don't really know. Do you? I mean, hey, they do have a song called "Pet Peeve" which is about boring people who lie or something because they say "you're my pet peeve / so get out of my way". I guess that's what they are all mad about. Because they do have this other really angry tune called "The Normal People" which is sort of an anti "Who are the People in your Neighborhood" type of punk anthem. At any rate, Down To Nothing play pretty fast and aggressive punk rock with a flair for actually singing lyrics we can understand which is always a feat of rock dignity in my eye. But still the message is a bit muddy so I'll let that go and just move on towards other things. Like um, the music. Oh wait, we already covered that. There are graphics of nice ladies in Cadillacs and the milkman on the inside cover art, all taken, it seems, from some 1950s lifestyle book; to which, I assume, is the ironic jab gone full throttle. OK, I get it now: The kids in Down To Nothing don't want to be normal. Gotcha! So they play 2-2 "punk" rock gone soft and have a nice design team handy. Rrrrrrrrright!!! Whittaker
@ www.thorprecords.com MP3 Download

Dr Pepper Family – “Taco and Red Beans” CD 12/47:38
This album makes me hungry. Just imagine some red beans with tacos along with a bottle of Dr Pepper. Yum. Well…I guess we should discuss the music though huh? Yeah… Unfortunately there isn’t much to talk about. Kid of lo-fi punkish rock with a decent amount of snotiness about them without major skills or imagination to get me all warm and gushy inside. Not too horrible yet not too interesting. I mean, you’ve heard this stuff before down at the club. The same kind of middle ground rock that made you go to the bar, order another pint and meander around till things got more interesting. Or you just got drunk. Either way I didn’t hate the Dr Pepper Family, I just think that a plate of red beans and tacos sounds better. Don’t you? Whittaker
@ www.kinkystar.com

Dr. Samuel J. Hoffman – “Waves in the Ether: The Magical World of the Theremin” CD
A collection of three discs, 1947’s “Music Out of the Moon”, 1948’s “Perfume Set to Music”, and 1950’s “Music For Peace of Mind” that were early works featuring the theremin. With Harry Revel composing the music, Les Baxter and Billy May conducting/arrangements same, and Hoffman providing the theremin. The theremin actually plays a relatively minor role in the first one, ending up being not quite as otherworldly as you’d expect from album and song titles; it’s more period “do-do-do-wah” with the occasional theremin touch than anything else. The other two feature the theremin more prominently, resulting in tuneage closer to the space-age pop beloved by Exotica fans everywhere. If not quite living up to the hype on the back insert (methinks Silver Apples and Brian Wilson got their inspiration elsewhere) it’s still a nice treat for loungecore and theremin fans everywhere. David
@ www.revola.co.uk

Dragons – “Sin Salvation” CD 11/36:20
Though the title track failed to impress me (too much vocal harmonizing), the rest of this album gave me a satisfying rock-and-roll fix. These San Diego stalwarts have been paying homage to the Heartbreakers and the Replacements for a decade and continue to hook me. But then, I’m a sucker for any song that incorporates searing Johnny Thunders-style guitar riffs. Lily
@ www.gearheadrecords.com

Dragstrip Riot – s/t CD 14/45:25
This Seattle quartet serves up rootsy rockabilly spiked with punk energy but occasionally creeps (or bolts, depending on the song) into psychobilly territory. In addition, there are a couple of surf instrumentals as well as an acoustic bonus track. A commendable debut. Oh, and for those who care, yes, they use an upright bass. Lily
@ www.go-kustom.com

Dressy Bessy - “s/t” CD 11/39:33
I’m the first to admit that female-fronted pop groups is usually not my bag, but I would have a hard time saying too many bad thinks about this most recent Dressy Bessy release. Short concise pop songs that have a classic quality without sounding like they are pandering towards a ‘look we’re hip and retro’ aesthetic. I wouldn’t quite call them bubblegum pop, as their guitars have a bit of an edge to them, but hey aren’t roaming too far from that pasture. I have a few friends who I’ll be recommending this disc too. In addition, the release comes with a DVD that contains some videos and live performances (from South by Southwest and CBGB’s) of a handful of their songs. Jake
@ www.kindercore.com

Drive Like Jehu – “Yank Crime” CD 12/61:14
When this record was originally released in 1994 it was over the heads of most of the world and would pre-figure about ten thousand bands that would emerge in the days of the post-grunge malaise. Their tightly-wound hyper-punk was unlike any other band in the world, but they were mistakenly considered an off-shoot of Rocket From The Crypt, by some, because RFTC’s John Reis plays guitar. But this is Rick Froberg’s band, make no mistake. His vocals burn through the barely contained super-tension of tracks like “Here Come the Rome Plows” and “Golden Brown”. Also included is the “Bullet Train…” single and the original version of “Sinews”. Highly recommended on LP or CD. The re-issue of the year so far. Anthony
@ www.swamirecords.com

Drive Til Morning - s/t CD 10/31:36
Francis Garcia is a Texas boy living in Brooklyn. With years as a member of various punk bands, Drive Til Morning is the project where he finds himself. Wistful nostalgic music that sorta makes you both sad and happy at the same time, this CD is well worth the listen. In the tradition of Damien Jurado, Ryan Adams and Bruce Springsteen, "Nebraska" we've got some high quality alt-country folk stylings going on. Pretty music, pretty voice, interesting thoughts. Sharon
@ www.deepelm.com

Drongos for Europe – “Barcode Generation” CD 14/39:02
U.K. streetpunk outfit that’s been apparently kicking and gigging on and off since ’79 returns with an album (their first actually) of recent material. I admit to not being familiar with their earlier works so I can’t say how this new album compares, but on its own the tunes are solid-to-pretty good with enough energy to put it ahead of most of the bands currently playing the Holidays in the Sun circuit. David
@ www.dislocate.co.uk MP3 Download

Dropscience – “Dies Tonight” CD 7/47:26
Challenging indie prog-rock that pays homage to fellow San Diego band Drive Like Jehu, the aesthetic of Washington D.C., and the sounds of Touch n’ Go Records. This is pretty good stuff with lots of starts and stops, lots of changes (small and big), and really long songs. The Dropscience does well by keeping the concentration in the tried and true forms of basic drums, bass, and guitar, and lets the songwriting make the statement instead of adding a million other things without really having a reason to do so. You’ll quickly find a soft spot for the song where they shout, “You’re fucking with the mastermind!” over and over. Recorded by Bob Weston of Shellac (so you know what it sounds like). Xtian
@ Happy Couples Never Last, PO Box 36997, Indianapolis, IN 46236

Dropsonic - “The Big Nothing” CD 10/53:20
This band and this album are way impressive. Lots of 70s style rock in the Led Zeppelin vein yet totally standing on their own with indie cred and a punk sensibility making this one of the better albums I have heard this year. The drums themselves are bold enough to overpower “In Utero” era Dave Grohl and the gits alone would give Queens of the Stone Age a run for their hyped up money. Without losing a rhythm line, Dropsonic play down to the various breakdown/time signature varieties and then swing back to full amp’d throttle. But that doesn’t mean they are afraid to actually slow it down and rock out in the ether-toned manner of maybe Radiohead or Shiner. Basically, you have to check these three guys out now before everyone else is all “oh yeah, of course…I’ve known about them for years now.” Chops, balls and landing strip epics filling the air with heavy club rock swooning alongside sounds we thought may have been done and dead. Um…nope. Alive! Whittaker
@ www.fiftyfourfortyorfight.com

Drunk Injuns – “From Where the Sun Now Stands I Will Fight No More” CD 12/48:58
AT’s Skate Rock series continues with this early-mid 80s Bay Area outfit, featuring the reappearance of tracks from a self-released cassette and the band’s sole album “Frontside Grind”. The masked ones specialized in darker, mainly mid-tempo hardcore, with vocals that manage(d) to be dramatic without becoming overwrought (well, most of the time anyway). They may not have been the fastest band on the block but they were pretty intense nevertheless. This also contains tracks from post-Injuns projects Ancestors (decent, though the vox get a bit too theatrical they still cranked out that darker ‘core) and, as the obligatory bonus hidden track, the surprisingly effective acoustic-based Juanita. Definitely worth checking out. David
@ www.alternativetentacles.com

Drunk With Joy – “I Say Goodbye” CD 3/12:04
Big-Beat trip-hop? Why not? Drunk with Joy’s latest three-song release blends the driving, chunky rhythms from one of England’s most famous dance exports with Mila Oshin’s breathy but assertive vocal work. It’s evident where her tasteful theatricality springs from: Oshin is a former resident of Holland that, at the age of 18, began studying philosophy while paying the bills as a dancer and clown. She’s written scripts and music scores for theater and dance productions and dipped deep into the lo-fi home recording well. Counterpart and producer Kris Jager lays bouncy but measured beds of instrumental melancholy for Oshin’s singing. Short, but very sweet. John
@ www.drunkwithjoy.com

Dubnicks - "Rejection Builds Character" CD 7/21:49
This one took me a little off guard, I was expecting a basic punk rock record and got a band more with a mature sound that the kids can enjoy, yet will appeal to fans of good power pop and melody as well. They've got some Weezer-ish melodies that work well with the nerd boy lyrics, but top it off with a punkier sound that makes this thing really rock. The backing vocals are more than your straight up mimicking of the chorus, with some nice arrangements that show off their songwriting ability. Songs like "Note to Self" are incredibly radio friendly, and most of the songs have a sound of their own, many bands replicate the same chords over and over, but this trio has better songwriting ability than that, and shows it. If you are as big a fan of the first Weston record as I am, then this will fit neatly into that niche; a smart record full of hooks and guys loving what they do. Steve
@ www.thedubnicks.com MP3 Download

Dudley Corporation - “The Lonely World Of The Dudley Corporation” CD14/37:46
This is, for the most part, derivative, thrumming angst-ridden indie rock, but it’s still pretty interesting. It’s pretty clear these young Irishmen - their names are Pip, Dudley and Joss (I’m not kidding) - grew up on the Pixies and Nirvana; they seem to like guitars and feeling sad, and they give their songs names like “Stupid” and “Stutter.” The Dudley Corp.’s World is, in fact, lonely, and a little dreary, but worth a listen all the same. Kevin
@ www.thedudleycorporation.com

Dufus - "1:3:1" CD 14/60:14
Anti-folks all over NYC like the Village Voice are breaking their necks to praise the shit out of this overwrought, cacophonous combo of underground experimental goof-nuts. The comparisons to everyone from the Fugs to Beefheart are too much to take. A couple songs jump out and scream 'I'm a fucked-up freak', like "Jahflooey", but they're few and far between. The whole package seems too un-self-consciously self-conscious to me, right down to the deconstructed phonetic lyrics. Find something by the Shakin' Ray Levis if you want to hear truly bad-ass art noise. Anthony
@ www.roir-usa.com

Duvall - "Volume and Density" CD 12/45:31
Josh and Eli Caterer make up 2/3 of Duvall, and since they were also 2/3 of the Smoking Popes, you can guess what this sounds like. For my money, the Smoking Popes were one of the great pop punk bands of the last 20 years; but Josh decided to get out of the music business to find out more about himself spiritually. After a couple of years away, Duvall started up, and they've put out a couple of singles over the last two years, but this is the first full length. Musically, it's the Popes, maybe a little toned down from their pop punk days, but the hooks are there, Josh's voice is still Morrissey-esque, and as always, they are never afraid to defy typical pop song structures and chord changes. What some people might have to get past are they lyrics; as I said, Josh left the music business (probably turning away a ton of money since they were breaking big time) to discover more about himself personally, and it's given the lyrics a distinct Christian bent. He's not preaching or trying to convert, so frankly, it's all good with me because I can't help but love the songs musically and Josh's voice, plus you know he's singing from the heart. And that always goes a long way with me. Aces, as always. Steve
@ www.asianmanrecords.com

Dwarves – “The Dwarves Must Die” CD 15/30:37
One would hope against hope that the lads would still be capable of producing a kick-ass take-no-prisoners rekkid worthy of the Dwarves moniker. Alas… The lads delve into many a style (surf, Ramonesy pop-punk, hardcore, post-hip-hop rock) but end up mastering/corrupting none of them. Even the cover concept (yet another “homage” to “Blood, Guts, & Pussy”) seems tired. Perhaps it’s time to reactivate the solo projects, give the cover dwarf his pink slip, and retire the once-proud name once and for all. David
@ www.sympathyrecords.com

Dynamite Boy – s/t CD 12/42:36
Nothing really new here, these guys have always been a decent pop punk band along the lines of early Green Day or Blink 182, but for some reason never have gotten much notoriety. Maybe it’s the sameness of the songs, or just the fact that they sound like so many other bands; or maybe it’s the fact that they are still on Fearless and haven’t jumped to a major label. The songs are all perky melodic punk tunes, with good vocals and nice backing harmonies as well. On this, their third full length on the label, they add some vocal effect here and there, and I hear some other electronic meandering from time to time, but the tried and true works pretty well. Maybe this effort will jumpstart their career a bit, because they’re a pretty fun band. Steve
@ www.fearlessrecords.com

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