Now more than ever, with radio stations being inundated with too-earnest faux buskers, it seems that a lot of bands could really benefit from spending some quality time with Big Black's Songs About Fucking. Judging by this record by STALINS OF SOUND, who wrap their noise punk in pseudo-Communist propaganda, the band's done its homework. “Tank Tracks” finds the trio using a few tricks in the Albini playbook, namely loading a hefty wall of fuzz against a drum-machine backdrop, and the Stalins’ abrasive machinepunk contains its share of hooks, and even some downright pretty melodies. This is all relative, of course, but after the militant march of "Blood Sex," the group carries the song out on an oddly serene and dreamy coda. The tremolo-picked riffs of "El Cajon Beatdown" are just this side of a Norwegian black-metal demo, and "Monkeys Attack" might be the best song that Devo never wrote. It's not that hard to make a chaotic noise-punk record sound good, but STALINS OF SOUND have a knack for songwriting that puts theirs on another level. —Jeff Terich /www.sdcitybeat.com
HOBOCOP is the bastard love child of an alleged member of Shannon and the Clams (Jumbo Jack Flash) and the reclusive Long John Hobocop. “Half Man Half Cop” is their vinyl debut. It's ideal for addicts of slop, fuzz, weirdness and fungus. Like the SCREAMERS ‘78 demos blasted through a moldy boombox in a California flophouse, this splattering of sweet golden punk oldies is the perfect slice of slime for Slovenly to continue with our infrequently released large-hole 10” series.