Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Podcast: Ep 34 - Why Not Just Watch One Thing?

Lost Tribe Podcast
Ep. 34: Why Not Just Watch One Thing?

In this episode the boys discuss the (non-Lost Tribe) podcasts that they love, and a few that they loathe. The verdict comes down on a bunch of TV shows, with a solid list of must-watches, and a couple don't-bothers.  Most importantly, it gets determined that certain podcasters have TV-ADHD and it's getting out of hand, and he needs to just fucking focus on a few things.  Finally, DC takes another shelling while Marvel gets all sorts of praise.

Get it on iTunes or here.

Monday, 25 February 2013

Review: The Rival Mob - Mob Justice

The Rival Mob
Mob Justice

Disclaimer: I wrote the following on my iPhone while pacing back and forth in my apartment during my 5th, 6th and 7th consecutive listen to this record. My hope was that it would add to the immediacy that seems appropriate with an album like this. In reality, it made for a bunch of borderline hyperventilating nonsense. I've left it as is for the sake of posterity... good luck. 

I'd like to begin by making a grandiose proclamation: The Rival Mob may well be the best thing in hardcore right now. Furthermore, they are probably the one band going today that I completely believe, 20 years down the line, will still be discussed in the hushed, reverent tones that we now reserve for the likes of Judge and Youth of Today.
Also, just so we're all on the same page, I think Mob Justice is an instant classic. The same way that some of my favorite albums connected with me immediately from the first listen, I knew from track one that this is a record that will be elevated to permanent rotation.
If you're not up for a bunch of hand jobs and Eskimo kisses, you may want to click away at this point.
Everybody good? Good.
At a very basic level, the most honest and accurate review I could concoct for Mob Justice would simply be to scream at the top of my lungs and then punch a fucking hole in the wall. It wouldn't be particularly insightful or clever, but it would sum my feelings up nicely.
The thing that continues to amaze me about this band is how they manage to sound tough (and angry as balls) while making that shit seem so goddamn effortless. I mean, there is a shitload and a half of tough, angry sounding hardcore bands in this world. Yet Rival Mob somehow makes them sound contrived and pose-y every time. And they do it while putting out records that are legitimately fun.
So, yeah... They may hate everything, but they seem to LOVE hating everything. And that's what, to me at least, makes them such any easy band care about. If you could give a fuck less about hardcore, it's easy to look at the insanity and flailing body parts and stomping around that make up any decent show and think: "That's just pointlessly violent. Someone's going to get hurt."
And that's fair enough. But, we do it because its cathartic and, most importantly, FUN. If we were really just a bunch of miserable, angry fucks, we'd be into black metal or Morrissey or something.
Musically, the band picks up nicely from where "Hardcore for Hardcore" left off back in 2010. The album also follows on the heels of the Mob Justice tape that made the rounds last year. People who are familiar with the tape will be pleased to know that the Intro has survived and makes a re-recorded appearance here. It still hits with just as much intensity, and will hopefully continue to serve as track one for their live show going forward. Shit goes HARD.
Boot Party was my favorite song on the demo and it's still a favorite here. The whole thing just demands to be sung along to. The same can be said about just about all 12 songs on the album. That, in my mind, is just about the highest praise you can heap on this type of record. The pits will be nuts.
I've seen people express disappointment that "Philcore for Philcore" didn't find its way to the LP. But, in fairness, that was never really an actual song. It was awesome, but not a song.
Basically, Rival Mob have delivered yet another slab of classic, kick-you-in-the-balls fucking hardcore. This is a record that can and will stand alongside any classic of the genre you care to put it up against. I know it's dangerous to go conferring classic status on a record before giving it a chance to age gracefully. But you can tell 5 minutes into this thing that it MATTERS.
It's as good as "The Kids Will Have Their Say" and "Is This My World."
It's as good as "Start Today" and "Bringin' it Down."
It's as good as "Set it Off" and the H2O self titled record.
"Give Blood," "Background Music," "Promised Kept," "Ill Blood," "A Life Less Plagued," "Lowest of the Low," "Hearts Once Nourished," "Fast Times...," "Witness..." The fucking Minor Threat Discography... It's as good as any of those, and probably better than half of them.
"Calm down, dude. You're being hyperbolic."
Fuck you. No, I'm not. This record is a goddamn beast you'll tell your grand kids about.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Movie Review: Red Dawn

Red Dawn
A Movie Review

Let me start this off bluntly: Somehow Red Dawn is one of the more subversive and surprising movies of the last 12 months. 

In a year where slavery (Lincolon), terrorism/torture (Zero Dark Thirty), Scientology (The Master), and East/West clashes (Argo) dominate the discussion of film critics, a plucky little action remake somehow became more honest and politically representative than any one of these soon-to-be-Oscar-winners.  I don’t know how it happened, and I have no idea why this wasn’t discussed elsewhere, but Red Dawn makes one of the most convincing arguments for Guerrilla warfare, insurgency, and ‘terrorist’ tactics that I’ve ever seen in a big-budget American film....or even small budget American film....or play....or news report.

Before I get into what the film actually says, let’s remember the source material they are working from.  In 1984, at the height of Reagan’s ‘Morning in America’, the original Red Dawn was released.   Capitalizing on the Red Scare, this film took viewers on a nationalistic romp that thinly masked its xenophobic message in exploding cars and bullet-ridden Soviets.....and Nicaraguans (if I remember correctly there were also Nicaraguans in this movie....as it was made during a brief window when America was supposed to be afraid of a Sandinista invasion....which no one was.)

When I sat down to watch the remake I expected exactly the same movie, but substantially worse as it was a cheap remake.  What I was presented with was anything but!  Ok, they did have a totally unbelievable enemy (in reality, Americans are as afraid of a North Korean invasion now as they were of a Nicaraguan invasion in 1984), and there were plenty of schlocky action sequences and over-wrought emotional breaks (and yes, there was xenophobia, but it wasn’t the point this time).  So it’s not like I’m saying this movie is perfect, but what I am saying is that the message of the movie was as follows:
   1. ‘Terrorist’ and Guerrilla warfare tactics (car bombs, attacks in civilian locations, small attacks followed by quick retreats in an effort to gain supplies and ammo, etc.) work.  In fact, they work VERY well.
      2. In the long run, large conventional armies really don’t stand a chance against dedicated home-grown insurgents.
   3. The invasion of someone’s homeland will never be seen as just by those being invaded.
    4. Any group that is facing an invasion has a moral imperative to resist the invaders.  Collaborators should be treated the same as enemy soldiers.

Now, if these messages were constantly accompanied by some message of American exceptionalism then my review would be different, but they weren’t.  There really wasn’t much flag waving at all (unlike the original), but instead there was a message that guerrilla tactics and small, coordinated attacks against an invading army were the moral imperative of civilians facing an invading army, regardless of their motivations.

And no, I’m not reading into things.  These are similar to statements made in the movie.  In the REMAKE OF RED DAWN.  What the hell?!  

Either way, it’s great and worth watching....and arguably says something more fundamentally important about war and human nature than anything that will win an Oscar this year.  Go figure.

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Podcast: Ep. 33 - A Sad Day for Die Hard

Lost Tribe Podcast
 Ep. 33 - A Sad Day to Die Hard

In this episode half of the crew sit down to discuss aging Canadian hardcore and the travesty that is the new Die Hard movie.  We mean it.  It's fucking terrible.  After that we talk about drugs (Lance Armstrong), murder (Oscar Pistorious), and mass murder (Christopher Dorner) in the news as well as how the sky is falling in Russia.

Get it on iTunes or here.

Review: Victims - Killer


I don’t know how I stumbled across Victims, but the second I heard them I knew that I had found a new musical-best friend.  They were like Disfear’s slightly more palatable little brother that mixed driving death n’ roll riffs with the ability to write a killer chorus.  In other words, there wasn’t anything not to like.  

Although their whole discography is worth listening, Killer will always be my favourite.  I guess it’s kinda hard to say exactly why, but I think it’s a combination of the catchiness-factor and the fact that this was the first Victims album I ever heard.  There really is something inexpressible about those first songs from a previously-unknown band that leaves a lasting impression.  I remember stumbling across this band on my own (which for some reason always makes me like a band a little bit more....does that make me a douchy hipster?  A metal elitist? An idiot?) and I knew that I had found something special. 

Victims is unmistakably European in a very indescribable way.  I don’t know if it’s the riffs, the song structure, or the fact that Swedish d-beat/anthemic punk is unique for some odd reason, but after two songs I had them pegged as meatball-loving, eternal-winter-having Nordic gods, which I later confirmed using the interweb. 

My uncanning ability to peg a band’s geographic origin aside, the purpose of this review is two-fold: 1. To express my love of this record, 2. To give this criminally underrated band a little more exposure.   While they do get acclaim within the d-beat community (if that is even really a thing), but most metal heads I have known aren’t wise to this band, or only have a cursory knowledge of their existence or discography.  And that’s a fucking crime.  So go listen to Victims and revel in one of the best records of 2008....which I guess makes this album 5 years old....fuck.  Where does the time go?

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Podcast: Ep. 32 - Requiem For a Maniac Cop

Lost Tribe Podcast
 Ep.32 Requiem For a Maniac Cop

In this episode the boys all but abandon Mike because of one hell of a winter storm, but he rescues the show by inviting a couple guests who join the ranks.  Ditching music for the week, things start off with an interesting chat about comics that people may not have heard of.  Then there is much discussion about vigilante cops and the action movie-esque street justice they exact (but somehow there is no mention of Body Count), which transfers into discussion about mental health and how every one thinks they are nuts at one point or another.  Finally, there is more disgust about appropriated grief, which is seems even our guests have a special hate for.  Enjoy this special guest-filled episode before the original line-up returns to ruin things next week.

Download it on iTunes or get it here

Monday, 11 February 2013

Review: Colin of Arabia - Pain Machines

Colin of Arabia
Pain Machines

1. Slowdance
2. Closure
3. You Guys Were Great, Don't Put Gas in Our Van
4. Prozac
5. Federal Extermination Maniacal Agency
6. Spite & Malice
7. Save It for the Judge
8. Never Blend In
9. Arrivederci Motherfucker
10. Badlands, The
11. Slavedriver
12. Counting Lessons in Purgatory
13. Kiss Me Goodbye
14. Closure
15. Introduction of Destruction
16. Casual Casualty
17. Slavedriver
18. Behind This Tongue
19. Slowdance
20. Eye of the Storm
21. 50 Bag of Hate
22. I Fight
23. Badlands, The
24. Kiss Me Goodbye
25. You Guys Were Great, Don't Put Gas in Our Van
26. Prozac
27. Arrivederci Motherfucker
28. Talking
29. Piss All Over Your Hopes & Dreams
30. Everyday I Walk the Same Way Home
31. Ordinary Guy

When discussing Colin of Arabia, whether in a review or on our podcast, it is important that I point out that Colin, lead singer of Colin of Arabia actually kind of frightens me.  Whether it’s hearing stories about his moshpit escapades or watching him perform in a bullet proof vest while taking swings at anyone who gets close to his mic, I have a healthy respect/fear for this Massachusetts hardcore icon. 

Colin’s unpredictability and hatred is also why he makes such an imposing and memorable hardcore frontman.  On Pain Machines, pretty much all of Colin and Co.’s music is collected into one convenient edition.  Each track embodies hatred, violence, and a ‘fuck everything/destroy the world’ that has always been at the heart of hardcore.  I’ve always felt that Colin of Arabia never quite got the recognition that they deserved.  They were always infamous for their actions, which unfortunately meant that their music was often overshadowed.  This is especially disappointing when their songs are taken into consideration.  Tracks like “Prozac” and “Kiss Me Goodbye” meld punk, metal, and hardcore into one giant rage-induced mess that leaves the listener completely satisfied (that sounded oddly sexual, but it’s not....I think...).  The only thing lacking on this release is the sound quality of the live tracks that make up the latter half of the record, but do you really expect to have Colin of Arabia to have expertly mixed, taken straight from a professional soundboard, live recordings?  No, I didn’t think so.

Either way, do yourself a favour and track down a copy of Pain Machines, if only to revel in an anthology that proves how good east coast hardcore can really be sometimes. 

Buy the CD here.

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Lost Tribe Podcast - Ep. 31: Torture Motherfucker, What?

Lost Tribe Podcast

Ep. 31 - Torture Motherfucker, What?

In this episode the boys talk about Tim Armstrong's new project (hint: it's not heroin this time) and then dive into a long, but not uncalled for, discussion about Zero Dark Thirty.  Gritty Journalism, Torture Porn, or just a pretty good movie?  The discussion rages on for quite a while.  Finally the boys talk about the re-emergence of Star Wars under the guidance of Disney.  Spoiler, the general consensus is that George Lucas is kind of a shitty, possibly rascist, sci-fi writer.

Get it on iTunes or here.