Album Reviews​​

Yeah, yeah, I know... you don't really give a fuck what we think... but, being the arrogant blowhards that we are, our egos are confident that everyone wants our opinions on every little thing...

Please consider a donation to help keep our light's on. We are 100% non profit driven.

... so, here are some album reviews that you probably won't read, because we're all punks, and form our own opinions on shit... If you're looking for All Thing's Celtic
Upstanding Citizen
Peace and Love 2017
So, there we were...

The VERY FIRST CPRA show had just concluded. Upstanding Citizen had just finished their headlining set. After clearing the stage, they were walking around to everyone, handing out free cds of their new album, which they had just released a few days earlier.
Now, when I think of Punk Rock, I think back to the 80's and 90's, when bands had to get creative, if they wanted to release an album on a budget... corners were always cut somewhere... maybe they used the cheapest recording equipment they could find... more than a few times, I saw bands selling cassettes that they had just dubbed from the master that they recorded in the garage, while standing around a crappy tape recorder...

It is in this vein that I found my first initial appreciation for the album, after having it handed to me by the beamingly proud band member.  The cover was hand-drawn, photocopied, and hand-cut.  The CD is a CDR, burned on someone's PC.  There is no track list.
This kind of presentation is something that I see as a continuance of a proud tradition in music... one that says, "We will do ANYTHING it takes to get our music out, as long as it's on OUR terms!"

Fucking. Awesome!

When I finally got the chance to listen to it, I was not disappointed!  This is a heavily instrumental album, which isn't very common in Punk.  It takes on a somewhat "experimental" nature, in kind of the same way that Butthole Surfers did in their  early work. It's the kind of 'weird' that just seems to work, because it comes from the established math within music, but with a unique styling that gives it an entirely unique edge.
 THis is the kind of first album that makes you hungry to hear the next one! Pick up their new album here  https://upstandingcitizen.bandcamp.com
Follow them here on Facebook-  https://www.facebook.com/UpstandingCitizenBand/
A?
2017 
-The Windermeres
 2016 Continental Divide
Fair disclosure:

I've been a fan of The Windermeres since I first saw them about 3 years ago at 3 Kings, with Black Dots and City Mouse.  I bought their first album (Anthem of the Recession Generation) that night, and it still has a strong presence among my most commonly played albums.  Having said that, my opinion might be a little biased. Now that we have that out of the way, let me tell you about this AWESOME album!

There are a lot of things that made the first album great... powerful guitars, engaging lyrics, amazing vocal talent, and 2nd wave style drums.  Continental Divide builds on their established foundations, maintaining their musical consistency in a way that does not disappoint, for fans of the first album!

The lyrics on this album are a little more emotional than the first album, with less of a political message.  This has the positive effect of expanding the emotional range of their music, making me excitedly curious to see the direction that their future music will offer! Pick up their 
new album here,  https://thewindermeres.bandcamp.com/  . Be sure to follow them here, 
https://www.facebook.com/thewindermeres/
A?
2017
Bitter Grounds- Hollowlands 2016
Hollowlands

This record was released in 2016 on VLE Records. Bitter Grounds is a punk ska band hailing from Utrecht, Netherlands. This album is like a breath of fresh air for punk rock and ska. While writing this in my head I have visions of punks, skins, and rockers moshing in harmony or destruction, Haha. I also think of the many people that are tired of the folk scene and need some hardcore guitar riffs in their lives.
Track 1- Hollowlands- Song has a great intro from the Film-Network, starring Howard Beale. "We deal in illusions, man. None of it is true! But you people sit there day after day, night after night, all ages, colors, creeds – we’re all you know. You’re beginning to believe the illusions we’re spinning here. You’re beginning to think that the tube is reality and that your own lives are unreal. You do whatever the tube tells you. You dress like the tube, you eat like the tube, you raise your children like the tube. You even think like the tube. This is mass madness. You maniacs."
This song has me thinking where did the idea for the tune come from? Is it against mass consumerism? Is it dropping your cell phone, closing your laptop and reconnecting with your fellow man? Is it something deep down we as all humans need to return to where the little things have meaning again? Is not listening to the latest political spin and thinking with our own brain's again?

Track 2- Struck Out- Definitely my favorite track from the album. The first time I heard it I quickly reached for my phone to make sure I hadn't accidentally started a Tim Timebomb or Lars Fredrickson Spotify channel. As I listen I can hear a band struggling to make it to the top, but they are being shutdown by the establishment. I love the outtake near the end of the tune from a Youtube video where an angry man berates a musician playing for change, https://youtu.be/9E62iA6KCIQ.


Track 3- Tell Me Now- A toe tapping tune that will have you singing along. To me it feels like the ending of a relationship or some sort. You question yourself and those around you wondering where to go from there.

Track 4- Life of Violence- Probably my 2nd favorite track. It's almost a throwback to 1980's punk rock like the Dead Boys yet has the strength and momentum of Bad Religion. Are you ready to destroy? Throw on this jam. The song actually has a very deep meaning about being surrounded in a world full of violence.


Track 5- Human Touch- I really enjoy the mix thrown in here to slow the tempo down. It's like this track is referencing the meaning behind Hollowlands. Almost as if humans need to return to being human again. Is it time to put down the ipad for bit?

Track 6- Patience- Picking up the pace again this tune is about fighting and not waiting around for things to change. We cannot change the world sitting around and being patient.

Track 7- Pressure- My 3rd favorite track on the album. This tune reminds me a little of Stiff Little Finger's cover version of The Specials song, Doesn't Make It Alright. I for one think this song is possibly about the loss or troubled relationship.

Track 8- Fine, Alright- A nice steady rocksteady beat behind a bass line. Reminds of a bit of Rat Race by the Specials. About knowing your job is sucking the life out of you and wanting more out of life than the 9-5.

Track 9- Dead In My Head- The title kinda gives it away. Another song of destruction and pure fucking enjoyment! How many times do we hold our tongues and regret not saying what we want?

Track 10- Breakdown- I love this final track on the album. The intro, "We end this conversation on drugs and bitter grounds". It speaks of hope and not losing your ground, yet hard to rise from the floor.

Track 11- Trouble- You know the feeling when something is just wrong and you gotta hit that door as fast as you can?

Ok we here at Colorado Punk Rock Army give Hollowlands by Bitter Grounds a solid 9.5. Add this album to your collection today and buy the shit out of their merchandise! Let's put these guys on the map! Hollowlands is available on all major music providers right now.

You can grabthis album here,  https://bittergrounds.bandcamp.com/  or follow them on Facebook here,  https://www.facebook.com/BitterGroundsBand/
Ska Bones
2017
The Cramps-Bad music for bad people -1984
I know, I know... most people like to review new shit...​
... but I thought that maybe it's a good idea to revisit some older music in these reviews, because most people that read these things are looking for music that's new to them, and are looking for something to sink their teeth into.
I first heard this album in about 1993.  What instantly leapt out to me was that it's just plain damn entertaining!  I liked the "surfabilly" vibe they had... I liked the simplicity of the music and the complexity of the bizarre vocals that seemed to mock Elvis Presley.

When I listen to them now, through more seasoned and experienced ears, I hear the combined sounds of the early New York scene, like The Ramones, New York Dolls, and Lou Reed; but with a drunken Southern slur.  I also hear the early California scene, like Dick Dale, Dead Kennedys, and some of the horror elements of Dead Boys and Misfits.
Over the years, this album and band has influenced COUNTLESS bands and artists, and is known as one of the earliest, and therefore most influential across not only Punk, but also Goth and Indie genres!

If you're looking for a great album to make you feel like you're sitting in CBGB c. 1977*, then this one will take you there!
A?
2017​ 

*The Author is fully aware that this album was released in 1984; he just wanted to paint a mental picture.
​​ Cheap Perfume-Nailed it 2016
Don't Panic Fest, Feb 2017 

The thing that just BLEW ME AWAY about this band was the intensity of the lead singer.  It was a pretty packed house that night... but even so, when she came down off the stage and started singing from the pit, the crowd was actually intimidated by her!  People were backing away with a shocked look on their faces.

That intensity translates beautifully on the album!  The music is chaotic, but with great rhythms and melodies.  The vocals and backing vocals are perfectly dissonantly balanced.  The lyrics are entirely political, and exemplify Punk attitudes and ethics echoed by the great Dead Kennedys and Black Flag.

In some ways, I'm reminded of 90's bands like L7, but also classic Punk, like Bikini Kill.

I recommend this album for anyone hungering for the Punk sounds of the early days, with the updated politics of today's issues.

... so, really, I recommend this album for just about everyone! Pick up this album here,  https://cheapperfume.bandcamp.com/

A?
​2017
-Fishbone
Fishbone 1985
       Fishbone a must add!

Fishbone is one of those bands that I can honestly say that I experienced (mostly) chronologically.  The first album I heard was their first album... this album.

Fishbone's initial offering to the world just happened to be an EPIC EP of 6 songs that melted my fucking face, when I first heard it at 15 years old.  Little did I know the strong impact their music would have on the ways that my world views have been shaped.

The self-titled album was strong on humorous lyrics, intense musical prowise, and encapsulating melodies.  It was very diverse in style... some ska... some rock... some punk... some soul... I had never heard anything like it at the time.

Over the years, Fishbone granted me the gift of racial perspective, allowing me to see the world without the filter of white privilege, helping me to understand the destructive nature and legacy of racism, and shattered stereotypes that have been forced upon us all by the media.

Fishbone's perfectly crafted self-titled EP was one of the most important albums of my formative years, and I would highly recommend that everyone listen to the complete discography in chronological order.  Trust me... it'll hit you in ways you really weren't prepared for.
A?
2017
Off the Avenue
Bandcamp Singles 2017
New singles from Off the Avenue!​​

I recently checked out the melodic punk band, Off The Avenue, from Buffalo, NY. The band formed by Mike Gerachi, from Seven Thirty Seven, released some new tracks on the band's ​​ Bandcamp account.

As soon as the first track ("On The Edge") started, I cranked up the volume. I thought to myself, "Damn, this shit is AWESOME!"
 
The second track soon followed.  "If I Could I Would Be You".  It did not disappoint. I found myself frantically searching for anything previously released by Off The Avenue.  Sadly, we will have to wait until a full album will be released from the blend of American and Canadian punks.

Download the Bandcamp release
here.

Be sure to follow Off The Avenue on
Facebook!

Ska Bones
2017

Zipperzs - Wild Animal 2017


Denver has a new Wild Animal


The newest release, Wild Animal from Denver’s own Zipperz reminds us that Denver’s punk scene has no intention of fading slowing into the alleys of South Broadway. As a big fan of Flatfoot 56 and The Potato Pirates I  decided to do some digging on the opening band before the show, Zipperz.. By the way the show kicked ass.

Track 1- Wild Animal
             I have to admit I wasn’t prepared for the melodic yet hardcore throat punch I received from the opening track. Reminiscent of bands like Pegboy, and the older Mike McCooligan days of Dropkick Murphy’s this track’s drums alone will get your boots stompin. Do you want to punch a Nazi? This should be number 1 on your Fight The Alt Right Playlist!

Track 2- Damn Few
    The Denver punk scene has always been about family and sticking together. Those friends and family are the “Damn Few”.  A tune about banding together and protecting your own. I love the little guitar riff which seems to flawlessly lead through the song.

Track 3- Still Dangerous
    This was actually the first track I came across on youtube. “Better watch your back when we’re in danger, better look forward cause we’re still dangerous, hearing those sounds will make you anxious”. I was instantly hooked. My first thought was, “Damn this is an awesome track”!

Track 4- That’s Right
    A song about remaining optimistic in a time of struggle. Again another head bobbin, foot stomping tune.

In conclusion the only downside of the album is it’s a bit short. I realize it’s also the band’s first album and releasing an album is expensive. That’s the exact reason you should buy this album! I personally cannot wait for the next release and hope it has more Denver punk rock hidden beneath the Wild Animals!  Pick up the new album here  . Be sure to follow them on Facebook here,  https://www.facebook.com/ZIPPERZ5280/#

Ska Bones
2017

Filthy Hearts- I'll Sleep When I'm Dead (Inside) 2016

Filthy Hearts - I'll Sleep When I'm Dead (Inside)


Angry Denver Punk Rock At It’s Finest

Denver’s Filthy Hearts released their EP, I'll Sleep When I'm Dead (Inside) in late 2016. So we are a bit behind on getting this review up. I saw Filthy Hearts for the first time at Denver’s Don’t Panic Fest at the High Dive. It’s been stuck on repeat on my phone for almost a year now. It strikes out as aggressive and energetic in a scene reclaiming lost roots and planting new ones.

At first I thought I had selected Pennywise or Strung Out. Nope I was right Filthy Hearts. Every single track is deeply heartfelt. There is something much deeper going here musically which cannot be explained easily. From the intro with Precipice to last track Not For Very Long this album will keep you wanting more. My only complaint is well it's an EP. We want more Filthy Hearts! Their new single, Career Day is out on Bandcamp and most online music retailers. ​ Be sure to follow them here,  https://www.facebook.com/FilthyHeartsdenver/   . Their new album is availble here,  https://filthyhearts.bandcamp.com/

Ska Bones
2017

The scutches- glasshouse

The Scutches - Glasshouse


A Refreshing Change For Punk, In A Not So Folk World

​I recently checked out The Scutches latest album, Glasshouse, released in 2016 on Tranquilo Records. The Long Island lads have done it again! I am reviewing the full length album on Google Play and not the EP on Bandcamp. This album is actually kind of hard to describe. It’s a strange, beautiful combination of rock and rhyme. Track 2- That’s What You Get, throws you into some strange 1960’s surf punk movie before you realize you’re even in it. It’s catchy, American Bandstand here we come. Track 3- Berlin they go a bit darker and show some strong heartfelt soul reflection.

Their sound is hard to throw into just any musical genre. One might say punk, while another might say folk rock. I personally hear influences from The Beach Boys, The Ramones, and maybe even older They Might Be Giants. Yet on the other end of the spectrum, there is definitely some Dead Milkmen or Violent Femmes. The toe tapping nature of the album puts a smile on your face even though sometimes the lyrics make your brain think, “Wait this is kind of sad, stop tapping your foot”.

My favorite tune from the album is by far, “Smile and Pretend”. A song about being done in a relationship and walking away. I’m not sure why this song hasn’t been played on the majors yet. It’s definitely a hit waiting to happen. So do yourself a favor and pick up The Scutches album Glasshouse today! Be sure to follow them here,  https://www.facebook.com/thescutches/   . Their new EP is availble here,  https://thescutches.bandcamp.com/album/glass-house and a full length album on most online music retailers.

Ska Bones
2017
 

​​DEFORESTERS
Leonard

Now my neighbors think I'm a fucking weirdo
...thanks...


After hearing lots of good things, I made the WISE decision to get the album,​ Leonard, by DEFORESTERS! "They" were right to push me in that direction!

Every song on the album has a part that makes you want to sing along, even if you don't know the words and have never heard the song. Tracks like "Is This A God Damn?" and "Exercise in Futility" are almost impossible to listen to without wanting to sing along!

The music is a ceaselessly energetic combination of Dropkick Murphys, Bad Religion, and just a dab of U2 in the guitars.

I made the mistake of listening to this album while cleaning; which IS recommended, because it's GREAT music to clean your house to; but if you have a tendency to dance around like a fucking moron while badly singing the wrong lyrics to music, don't do it with the curtains and window open... consider this a PSA.

​Seeing as how I'm SURE you'll want to get this album for yourself, you can find it HERE! https://deforesters.bandcamp.com/



A?
2017
 

​Crusades
​This is a Sickness and Sickness Will End

This is Not a Punk Album
(but I really fucking liked it)
by A?
This review is a bit of a departure from our typical wheelhouse, but great music doesn't just come from one particular genre or sub-genre; and I happen to be a (selective) metal fan. I don't like the typical "cookie monster" bands. Being that I come from a theatrical background, I place high value on bands that have more than the ability to play the same note REALLY fast for two minutes to cover up the faults of a shitty singer... that's not the metal I like.

​When I listened to the album, This is a Sickness and Sickness Will End, by Crusades, I didn't hear a punk album. I heard some punk elements, and certainly an influence by Rise Against, but what I really heard was a power metal album... which is the metal I like!
The bands that I would compare Crusades to are bands like Kamelot, Queensryche, Blind Guardian, and Sabaton; with maybe a little Ministry and Killing Joke-style 90's industrial-ish edge.

If you're into epic builds, theatrical vocal performance, and more of a "Dream Theater" kind of feel; this is probably up your alley!

​I liked this album a lot; and in fact, I recommended it to my friends with whom I regularly see metal shows! 

Be sure to follow them here,  https://www.facebook.com/thescutches/   . Their new EP is availble here,  https://thescutches.bandcamp.com/album/glass-house  and a full length album on most online music retailers.

A?
2017
 

​Off With Their Heads
​From the Bottom

Two Great Albums! 

I knew I wanted to write about Off With Their Heads; but I wasn't sure which album I wanted to write about.  Quite frankly, they're all good!

After much contemplation and hard thought, I decided that this was the best format in which to express my thoughts, so I'm going to review two albums at once.  The reason will become apparent as you read this.

I made a serious fucking mistake when I started listening to Off With Their Heads...

I listened to the last album first.  Usually, when I start dissecting an artist's music, I start at the beginning and listen to all their music chronologically, so as to fully appreciate the musical journey they have taken.  I didn't do that this time, and my initial impression was distorted by my lack of context within the full picture.

Let me explain.

My first thought was,  "Are these guys from New York?"

-nope... Minnesota... but if GG Allin were to start singing for the Ramones, it would sound like this.

... but with somewhat depressing lyrics.

THAT'S where I was lacking the full context... 

I went back, and listened to their music chronologically... and found something that hit me in a deeply personal and emotional way, across two albums.

When I got to the album, Won't Be Missed, I found some of the most relatable music I've heard since I listened to the library of The Eels.

This is an acoustic album that fully embraces emotional honesty, dealing with the multitude of confused and erratic emotions relating to the death of someone close.

Every song portrayed a different feeling or thought that went through my own head while dealing with the very painful and untimely death of my brother.  This album has a very deliberate way of addressing and putting words to some of the hardest things that we, as humans, have to deal with; and I commend them for doing it with such brutal honesty.

With the newly acquired perspective from Won't Be Missed  (and the several listenings thereof), I returned to the album, From the Bottom with "fresh ears," and now understand that it's largely a continuation of the hard journey of recovery from personal trauma.

I don't think I can say enough about the pertinence of these albums, for anyone that's had difficult losses in their lives, and struggle with finding the right place for their emotions and thoughts.  Furthermore, I look forward to following this musical journey as far as I can!

A?
2017
 

​behind Deadlines
Status Quo

Behind Dealines- Status Quo



Ska Punk Skankin’ Good Time

The Philadelphia boys’s released Status Ouo back in 2016.  From the opening track Biochemistry to last, Drinking To Brazil. This album is filled with happy ska tunes mixed with melodic punk. My first thoughts were something in between Reel Big Fish and The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. This is great album for questioning personal relationships. My favorite song by far is “Six Months”. The one thing I really enjoyed was the tempo changes between the different tracks.  I plan on picking up anything I can from this band!

So if you want to skank or break stuff in the pit. Do yourself a favor and pick up the LP! Pick up the new album here https://behinddeadlines.bandcamp.com/album/status-quo . Be sure to follow them on Facebook here, https://www.facebook.com/BehindDeadlines/ ​

Ska Bones
2017
 

​The Reuters- E.P.

The REUTERS- E.P.

Garage Punk 'd Stoner Rock from the Netherlands!

Can someone say Killing Joke  meets the Doors?  I recently checked out the The REUTERS new EP, simply titled, E.P.  The album contains 5 new songs based on late 1970's material.  You'll be wanting this record in a vinyl format right away. Per the band's bancamp only 200 copies of the record have been pressed. In fact it may already be too late. So make sure you try and pick it up soon.

As the first track loaded up, Ambient Ambulance. I had to check my phone to make sure it wasn't playing The Cramps, Killing Joke, or The Damned. 
I really enjoyed the organ in the background of Schmerzhaft (Painful in English). The song is definitely heartfelt and deep. And yes the song is in Danish, but still easy to sing along with. No Friend of Mine is by far the winner on the EP. A great tune with some melodic punk mixed with some psychdelic background.  I will be also picking up their album prior to E.P., called, "We  Are From Hu". As I think The REUTERS have got me hooked!  

Pick up the new album here https://behinddeadlines.bandcamp.com/album/status-quo . Be sure to follow them on Facebook here, https://www.facebook.com/BehindDeadlines/ ​

Ska Bones
2017
 

​King Shelter - Failure EP

King Shelter- Failure EP

Surfy Pop Punk Hits!

King Shelter is a Salad Rock band from Los Angeles, who are previously known for their surfy pop punk hits.  Also featuring their "Holy Ghost" single, but may have moved on to reinvent their sound to a distorted, drippy, and reverbed sound. 

The songs on the Failure EP reflect messages perserverance despite hardship and self-doubt. Holy Ghost and Failure  are the two strongest songs on the EP.  "Luv Sub" is a song about someone who is intimmidated by another's love interest, but is not in the social situation to win that person over. While "People Change",  shows
a reluctance of a break up and not being able to let go. The only thing that brings this EP down is the end track, "....But Bye", which seems a bit out of place. I think the band maybe felt they  the track needed to put it in.

Overall I give this EP an 87%. I cannot wait for the next to hear what's coming from the band next.!

Pick up the new album here http://kingshelter.com/#music-section . Be sure to follow them on Facebook here, https://www.facebook.com/kingshelter/ .

@ColoradoPunk (E)
2017