Review Summary: An artist at another crossroads proves that he still has some ideas to offer and builds an inconsistent album around them. Christian Fitness is the (sort-of-) solo project by Future of the Left’s eccentric frontman, Andy Falkous. Love Letters in the Age of Steam treads ground that should be familiar enough for fans of Andy that are aware of his past works, but it’s also got a couple of natural evolutions that have been a long time coming. The album has a somewhat unfortunate tendency that is common for artist’s of Falkous’s caliber in that it exists in a state of simultaneous progression and regression.
The first volume in a series projected to analyze the punk phenomenon on a year-by-year basis, British Punk Rock 1977 assembles some of the less well-known but no less influential sides to emerge from that pivotal year. Collecting 20 tracks, it jumps from established cult heroes (Alternative TV's "How Much Longer," Penetration's "Don't Dictate," the Vibrators' "Baby Baby") to forgotten favorites (the Drones' "Corgi Crap," the Sniveling Shits' "I Can't Come," the Pork Dukes' "Bend & Flush"); some of it still holds up, some of it doesn't, but all of it remains a testament to its time and place.
Gritty 60’s Garage & Punk is a nickel tour of the vast Sundazed Music catalog of 60’s garage rock, early punk, & psych monsters. This collection has a West Coast slant highlighted by the Leave It To Beaver star himself, Jerry Mathers, who fronts the growling and driving Beaver And The Trappers!
The members of Self Defense Family, the loose Albany-based collective, all came up through punk and hardcore. And for more than a decade, they’ve been using Self Defense Family to push those sounds in jagged, expressionist, unconventional directions. In sound and ethos, Self Defense Family’s records recall the things that were coming out of Washington, DC shortly after that city’s hardcore scene went through its Revolution Summer chrysalis period. But SDF are heavier, more tangled, and more specific in their clatter.