Clamor #36 / $5.50 / 100M / http://www.clamormagazine.org /
I always feel bad when I review earlier issues of a magazine, especially those that have shut their doors recently. However, this issue is just too good to pass up. There are pieces with the Coney Island Polar Bear Club (which shows a humorous side of Clamor that does not usually come through during issues of this magazine), along with a piece that should open readersâ€™ eyes in â€œMountaintop Removal in West Virginiaâ€. Before reading this piece, I had the mistaken thought that most of these major operations had went the way of the dodo. The clear picture of an operation that stretches out what seems like tens and tens of miles by Antrim Casey. Perhaps the most challenging piece in this issue of Clamor has to be the â€œ14 Acresâ€ piece, which has a number of debates about whether the South Central Farm of Los Angeles should be preserved or destroyed. The range of discussion is large and of a scale that many other magazines would only be proud of achieving. There are discussions of musicians in this issue of Clamor, including a piece on Cipher and a number of different reviews of albums, but Clamor is much more of a political magazine first off. The pictures in this issue sharp, the text filling up most of the page and making the magazine well worth the $5.50 cover price. With magazines like Clamor, Punk Planet, and Altar all closing up shop, it behooves anyone interested in social justice to go out and make a magazine to close up the void. Hereâ€™s to hoping that this is sooner rather than later.
Strange Mike Steel / 2005 Mouse Chew / $3 / 32M / firstname.lastname@example.org /
Strange Mike Steel is a comic that feels as if it came out about thirty years ago. Philip is extremely influenced by this earlier style, but is able to tell a story without really going into the more fanciful story-telling styles of the stories of the era. The first page starts out with an interesting note, that a story will be â€œseen in flashback in a later issueâ€, but seems to build a solid story despite that. The story is very text based, and while there uis not much in the way of action covered in each panel, the story goes by at a pretty solid clip. The style breaks down into itsâ€™ constituent parts if individuals focus on it, as if Philip does not finish up the pieces of art that create this issue. The different batches of characters provide some variation to the flow of this issue, and showcase the storytelling abilities oh Phil. It seems at pints that the different stories will not be reconciled, but individuals feel as if they are one step closer to understanding the overall point of Strange Mike Steel. The only things that I would not mind done with subsequent issues of this comic would be a little firming up of the art and continued work in the universe that Phil has created for the characters in this issue. Give this issue a go if you like the artistic style of the seventies and an interesting, off-the-wall story; this issue seems like a great place to start.
OST: Quentin Tarantinoâ€™s Death Proof / 2007 Warner Bros / 16 Tracks / http://www.warnerbros.com / http://www.deathproof.net /
Everyone knows that this soundtrack is for the movie that was Quentin Tarantinoâ€™s part of Grindhouse, â€œDeath Proofâ€. The tracks here feel like they are taken from an earlier period. The first track on this score is Jack Nitzcheâ€™s â€œThe Last Raceâ€. This track has the seventies orchestral heaviness present in droves, with cars speeding by as the background. Only two and a half minutes in duration, the track is integral for contributing to the scoreâ€™s sound as a whole. Smithâ€™s â€œBaby, Itâ€™s Youâ€ keeps the overall sound of the disc solid, although the track seems more like a late sixties song than a mid-seventies one. If one takes the track in the context of it being played a few years after it was released, or in that most of the Bond soundtracks used earlier styles, then the song works. Continue reading “OST: Quentin Tarantinoâ€™s Death Proof”
Slug #223 / Free / 1:00 / 68M / http://www.slugmag.com /
For those individuals that have not seen any of the prior reviews of Slug, this is a free zine that is handed out in the Salt Lake City (Utah) region. However, the zine gets a little more in the way of legs when individuals read the feature pieces in the issue. The one thing that seems to have changed in between issues is the proportion of advertisements to content. This time, there seems to be more in the way of advertisements, which makes it a little harder to read this issue. However, the zine is still a fun read, as there is a good banter between the editors and individuals that received a low rating (Lying Bitch and the Restraining Orders). Also present are reviews with two bands that have â€œDevilleâ€ in their name (Spooky Deville and Junta Deville). Another strength of this issue has to be the feature on Psychic TV / Genesis P-Orridge. I had heard of eir in the past but had really never had a chance to understand what P-Orridge was trying to do; this educational nature of Slug is shown further with the description of the â€œUtah Duckbuttâ€ as well as a breakdown of the history of liquor laws in Utah. Despite the fact that there are an increased amount of advertisements in this issue, Slug has really stepped up their game and created some very interesting pieces that will stand the test of time should individuals give the magazine another read a few months down the road.
Trapt is holding the world premiere of their new video â€œStay Aliveâ€ on Yahoo today. The band wanted to do something a little different and utilize some of the great talent that exists on the web to create their new video. The band searched hard and found Mile Kalbach, an amazing claymation artists who was a fan of the band. Continue reading “Trapt Has World Premiere of “Stay Alive” on Yahoo”
Nerve #1 / Free / 28L / :45 / Nerve House, P.O. Box 12255, Milwaukee, WI 53212 /
I was really looking forward to Nerve when I looked at the first page of the zine. In it, it says â€œThereâ€™s no poetry in itâ€.Â I assumed that there was no poetry in the entire issue, but I guess the author just meant that there is no poetry in the word â€œnoâ€. Oh well. This issue has a lot of poetry in it. Nerve is a magazine that looks to make a world fair to all individuals, and tries to break down sexist, homophobic, ageist, and other walls while doing that. The most interesting thing that I found in the zine has to be their little tidbits concerning individuals that struggled against the system. Oftentimes only a sentence or two in length, these tidbits make individuals want to know more Â about specifically happened in these events. This is the first issue of the zine, so it feels as if Nerve has not found their place in the zine scene as of this moment. The text is clear, the contrast between the text and pictures nice, but there just needs to be more in the way of substantive discussion and less in the intangibles (poetry, mainly). This seems to be a content-driven magazine, so I am sure the large context of the zine will change given different material. Write them and see if they are still doing the magazine, and if they are, send along some pieces in a subsequent letter. If they are not sexist, homophobic, or the like, chances are good that you will get into print.
Protest Hill â€“ The City Echoes Our Hearts / 2007 Latest Flame / 11 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/protesthill / http://www.latestflame.com /
Protest Hill plays a brand of indie-heavy pop-rock that is similar to the work of a Fray, Ben Folds, or Jack Johnson. â€œAll That You Needâ€ is the first track on â€œThe City Echoes Our Heartsâ€, and it blends Tori Amos â€˜s style of piano playing with bassy instrumentation and Bond soundtrack arrangements. The band is good at shifting their style, as â€œKillerâ€™s Wittâ€ is a song that looks back to the country-fied styles of Seven Mary Three and the Black Crowes for influences. The guitar present on this track will remind listeners of early Garth Brooks, while the vocals are a little more joyous than those put down from Thom Yorke (Radiohead). Continue reading “Protest Hill â€“ The City Echoes Our Hearts”
With all the summer music festivals coming around this year, Different Kind of Dude Fest is offering something different but necessaryâ€”it bills music along with an anti-sexist education. Through workshops, discussions and large-group art projects, Different Kind of Dude Fest aims to present an alternative to the self-indulgent culture of the average music festival. Continue reading “Different Kind of Dude Fest Announce”
Hotel Alexis â€“ Goliath, Iâ€™m On Your Side / 2006 Broken Sparrow / 14 Tracks / http://www.hotelalexis.com / http://www.brokensparrow.com /
There is little more to say about Hotel Alexis besides the fact that they play a brand of indie rock that has no time referent; tracks like â€œSoft Soft Warâ€ and â€œSan Diego Backslideâ€ paint a quiet yet nuanced picture of the band. â€œI Will Arrange for You to Fall IIâ€ allows the bandâ€™s instrumentation to shine the brightest, as the vocals are barely heard above a whisper during this song. In what seems to be a reversal of what is commonly heard on albums, the vocals that Hotel Alexis put forth act as highlighters for the instrumentation during this track. Continue reading “Hotel Alexis â€“ Goliath, Iâ€™m On Your Side”
Gallows â€“ Orchestra of Wolves / 2007 Epitaph / 15 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/gallows / http://www.epitaph.com /
Gallows play a brand of hardcore metal that goes into the style of acts like Menâ€™s Recovery Project and Agoraphobic Nosebleed at times. However, during tracks like â€œKill The Rhythmâ€ and â€œCome Firendly Bombsâ€, the band create a much more approachable sound than any of those two acts. This means that during a â€œCome Friendly Bombsâ€, individuals can easily understand why the band arranges things the way they do, and they can even understand what the hell is being said. Hell, during â€œCome Friendly Bombsâ€, the band takes on a style that sounds more later Corrosion of Conformity than Job For A Cowboy. Continue reading “Gallows â€“ Orchestra of Wolves”