Thursday 27 December 2012

"A Vile Peace" compilation Lp 1987

However hard it is to believe now, Peaceville used to be a DIY punk label anchored in anarchopunk politics. "A Vile Peace" is refered to as "Vile 1" on the jacket although it is not the first Peaceville record since the "Will evil win?" compilation flexi, the Deviated Instinct Ep and the first Atavistic Ep were all released prior to it albeit during the same year of 1987. The name of the compilation has a political meaning and reflects the record's antiwar theme. On the backcover, in addition to a gruesome picture of a dead hero, there is an almost exhaustive list of all the major military conflicts and interventions that took place between 1945 and 1987. At that time, Europe was celebrating a supposedly forty year peace, which was extremely cynical to say the least when one considers the number of wars European powers engaged in during that time period. Interestingly enough this myth is still very much alive today (the EU did get the Peace Prize for that...), as if the wars being fought outside Europe didn't count as real wars with real people dying in it. "Peace is at hand. A Vile Peace. Peaceville."

That Peaceville started out as an anarcho label (it was originally a DIY tape label that Hammy used to make tapes of the band he played in during the early 80's, namely the Instigators) can also be seen in the bands' selection on the compilation. Apart from Dark Crusade who were an all-out metal band, all the bands were essentially punk bands and had something to say. It might just be an impression but I feel sometimes the connection between anarchopunk and crust is downplayed or even ignored. Let's not forget that members of Axegrinder used to play in Stone the Crowz, that Deviated Instinct's first demo was an ambitious, if a little cheesy, anarchopunk recording or that Scruff from Hellbastard played at some point in the Apostles. This link between these two moments in British punk history is epitomized by the presence of a poppy Chumbawamba song on this comp. But let's talk about the music, shall we?

The first song is the famous Axegrinder's "Slayer song": "Where evil dwells". I have already written that I don't think it sounds like Slayer but I have to admit that they could have done without that fast part in the middle that just comes out messy and anticlimactic. The band explains in "Trapped in a scene" that they had rushed through the recording of the song at the time in order to be included on this record which accounts for the song's flaws. This said, I really love the song and it stands for a transitional period in Axegrinder's life. It is a heavy, raw, dark, mid-paced number with a great riff, smart drumming and a perfect gloomy intro. Classic crust indeed. To be noted that Effigy had a song with the same name on their split with Hellshock, but then they were no strangers to borrowing ideas, riffs or even songs (Bathory and Antisect anyone?). "Where evil dwells" is anti-religion song that uses gory and macabre images to stress the manipulative, blackmailing, evil nature of the Church. There is a short and sharp explanation from the band that poetically ends with "Fuck your religion". Axegrinder were not deprived of a sense of humour either as they claim the song was "recorded in London, mixed in New York, produced in Sweden, practiced in Leyton and sent to Hammy in Yorkshire". Who said globalization didn't work?

Next is Decadence Within and their brand of hardcore crossover. I never really got into their later stuff. Too American-sounding for me I guess. However, DW always had good and genuine lyrics and this one is no exception as "Crushing of the intellect" is about alienation and how we are content to live as unquestioning sheep.

Feed Your Head's "ABC" is the next song and while I always thought of Feed Your Head as a band primarily influenced by US hardcore, this song made me dig deeper and I really like what I found. In fact, "ABC" reminds me a little of Paranoid Visions or Terminus with its folk influence and its dark tunefulness and is bound to please any old anarchopunk lover. The lyrics are pretty smart as well and deal with social conditioning at school and the lies of a perfectly ordered world that we are told whereas dystopia is what we are getting.

Three songs of the Hippies are next on the menu. This was the more hardcore period of Electro Hippies, before the massive "The only good punk" Lp. Three (very) fast and loud numbers about madness and vivisection. I imagine the metal artwork complete with a sloppily drawn devil was meant to be a joke (let's be optimistic).

The next band is Bedlam and I must confess that I know next to nothing about them. Apparently, this was their sole vinyl appearance and I have never heard of a Bedlam demo either. The name "Bedlam" was originally used to refer to an old London hospital specialized in "treating" mentally ill patients in the 15th century. By way of association, it became synonym with madness and chaos and thus a word fit for punk-rock (Pleasant Valley Children and Antisect had songs entitled "Bedlam"). Sonically, Bedlam owes as much to the UK as to the US. I can hear a late Anti-System influence, as well as some Anihilated and Concrete Sox, but the vocals and some breaks are definitely of the American hardcore persuasion. The sound is quite raw indeed and it is sufficiently angry and energetic to keep me interested. Cool lyrics about a global uprising against world oppressors. I will drink to that!

Chumbawamba are next and they hardly need an introduction. They were one of the most formidable anarchopunk band before selling their souls to the enemy, aka EMI. As much as I find this move saddening, still early Chumba is not only original, but smart punk-rock (well, let's stick with a generic term like "music") that will make you question and subvert things. This song is a sarcastic take on armchair revolutionaries who dictate what shoud be done, where, when and how while they sit on their arses in the comfort of their home. This is NOT a punk-rock song in the musical sense of the term, more like a pop song really which could be seen as heralding a radical change in Chumba's creative production. In the context of "A vile peace", it is a breath of fresh air in the midst of all this stench.

Civilised Society? are next in line, a band Hammy was singing for at the time. I have already declared my love for CS? so there is no need to write another ode. Here we have a dub version of "Treedoom", a song about ecology that appears on CS?'s second Lp, "Violence sucks!". This is a great song and while I cannot really say that the dub treatment enhances its qualities, neither does it spoil them. More drums and bass, but less guitar. It loses its earthy feel but the rhythm section benefits from it. I guess if Antisect and Chumba had conceived a baby while high on drugs it could have resulted in a song like this one.

The last song of the first side of "A Vile Peace" is an epic stormer by Rest In Pain who didn't hesitate to borrow a couple of riffs from Hellhammer. Unfortunately, I know nothing about Rest In Pain apart from their location - they were from Bath, near Bristol - and their obsession with Tom G. Warrior. "How the mighty have fallen" is the longest song on the compilation and it is perfect choice to end the A side. One could venture that Rest In Pain were far ahead of their time when one considers the vast numbers of bands who have been openly ripping off Frost or Hellhammer for the past five years. The song has a distinct early crust sound and production which brings to mind the rocking power of Amebix or late Antisect. To me, this song is a winner and it has a great drawing from Jeff Gaither depicting a seriously zombified priest that goes well with the apocalyptic lyrics.

The B side doesn't start as well as the A one had finished. In fact, it starts with two songs of Dark Crusade and, well, I love early crust and the bands influenced by that wave, but that's just cheap thrash metal. Sorry lads.

After that much metal, I am pleased to announce that Visions of Change are next. Energetic, powerful and positive, melodic hardcore punk. Their song, "More than now", is anthemic, has infectious chrorus for added value and the singer can actually sing. Visions of Change were really Depraved under another name and I see them in the same light as I do Leatherface or Snuff, bands that take the American tunefulness and song-writing and give it the British treatment. Great Native American inspired artwork on this one as well.

Atavistic takes over with one of their best songs: "Maelstrom". This number is the perfect bridge between their fast as fuck hardcore early period and their heavier one. It starts with a classic, synth-driven, atmospheric crust intro that gives Sacrilege, Amebix and Axegrinder a run for their money with its heavy riff and drumming. Then, we have thrashy punk in vintage Atavistic style and after a short, faster transition, all hell breaks loose, lightning fast grinding hardcore hits you in the face. Quite a ride indeed. As usual with Atavistic - who were England's own "intellectual punks" (HHH reference, wink wink) - the lyrics are very good, though more obscure and metaphysical than their earlier stuff. Man's relation to nature and time is the subject of Atavistic's meditation, as well as the ephemeral vision of total freedom of the mind. Did I mention the song is fast?

Next are Insurrection from Guernsey with a track that was taken from their first 1986 demo. While their Lp could be described as the bastard child of Chaos UK and Extreme Noise Terror, their early sound was more akin to the second wave of British punk-rock. If you add a sprinkle of hardcore on the Actives or early Revulsion, you would a similar-tasting cake. But enough comparisons already, this is snotty, fast, straight-up punk-rock with anarcho leanings as the lyrics about multinational corporations and the artwork suggest. Odd that in a time when so many bands seem to worship at the altar of Chaos UK and Disorder, bands like Dirge, Ad'Nauseam or indeed Insurrection are seldom quoted as influences...

"Relief" and "Slave to convention" by the almighty Doom follow. This was Doom in its earliest and sloppiest incarnation. If you listen closely to the distorsion and the drumming, it is actually closer to a gruffier Chaos UK than Discharge (or Discard, the main influence behind it all). The two songs have this unmistakably youthful punk spontaneity that we all love so much.

Next is "Rock'n'roll conformity" by Deviated Instinct in a version that is much superior to the Lp's. It was recorded in 1987 and was part of the third demo, many tracks of which ended up on subsequent compilations. I think it is my favourite 80's DI recording. The sound is thick, chunky, groovy and it has a filthy  and snotty vibe, something the Lp greatly missed. This song is about the capitalistic cock-rock circus, about the rockstar system, and how it can deprive one of the ability to think critically. After all, in these big rock shows, we are only expected to applaude sheepishly, get our lighters out and "rock hard". Great artwork as usual depicting a zombie, dressed like Bon Jovi in his prime, pulling the rock'n'roll strings.

Sore Throat is a bit of a Marmite band: you either love them or hate them. I, for one, am definitely in the first category. For this compilation, Sore Throat gave almost three minutes of noisy bollocks entitled "Only the dead know the end of the war". It oscillates between cavemen grindcore, neanderthal crust or just noise for the sake of it. There is a strange background noise that could be a grunt repeated endlessly but I am not quite sure. Amazing artwork here, maybe my favourite of the bunch, with a WW1 soldier waking up from the dead and skull-shaped nuclear explosion.

Next are Revulsion, a criminally underrated band from Norwich. Their song "Another bloody war" must have been recorded during the same session as their two songs from the "Consolidation" Ep. It has awesome, tuneful and epic guitar leads that give the Revulsion sound another dimension. In addition to vintage Conflict (think "Increase the pressure") and other 80's snotty anarcho bands like Symbol of Freedom or early Anti-System, I am reminded a bit of 90's anarcho band like A//Political and Counter-Attack with a healthy spoonful of Partisans and early Varukers. And yet Revulsion are totally unique as I can spot them in a heartbeat. Top band.

Dawn of Liberty is the only non-British (gasp) band included on "A Vile Peace" as they were actually from Belgium. They were an anarchopunk band active in the late 80's and beside a very good Ep, they also appeared on such great compilations as "Attack is now suicide" (alongside Asocial, Extrem or Deviated Instinct) and "Exclusion" (a feminist comp including Active Minds, Atavistic and The Ex among others). Though not locals, Dawn of Liberty lied sonically on the British side of thing. They played fast and angry hardcore punk with quieter mid-paced moments that bring to mind early Bad Influence, AOA or Legion of Parasites. The present song "Autonomia" is nothing less than a call for direct action.

Last but certainly not least are Hellbastard. I haven't posted anything from them so far so here is a good opportunity to do so. I am sure most of you have already heard about these crust pioneers who actually coined the term "crust". The song we are dealing with here is "Civilised?", taken from the band's second demo "Hate militia" recorded in 1987. The recording is raw indeed and it is everything you can expect from an old Hellbastard song: chunky riffs, heavy guitar, pummelling drums and gruffy vocals. I really like the HB's songs that have the spoken words done by Wendy and "Civilised?" is one of them. Lyrically, the song is about colonization and the theft of land and resources that Native people have had to endure.    

Monday 17 December 2012

Debris "Attrition" Ep 1999

Newly-formed bands and the labels promoting them often rely on the "ex-members of" presentation in order to attract attention. While it is always nice to see that punk inspiration doesn't end when a band splits and that people keep playing music, it is also a bit ridiculous when bands get all the attention because they happen to have elite level "ex-members of" among their ranks. Sometimes, having a couple of "ex-members of" is enough to ensure you a tour, one or two albums that will be bought by the cream of the crop and fancy shirts. It would be pointless and childish to point my vengeful finger at anyone, but let's just say that a mediocre d-beat band remains mediocre even when hardcore heroes play in it or release it.

Fortunately for you and I, Debris is not one of these bands. Despite the fact they had ex-members of Disaffect, Scatha, Ebola and Quarantine, you can find all their records for half the price of just one Disclose Ep. Ain't life great?

Debris was a Scottish band active in the late 90's and early 2000's which emerged from the same scene that cradled the Disaffect/Sedition/Scatha pagan trinity. [Let's have a really geeky moment. I can't decide which one of the three I like the most. I have actually given some thought about it but can't come to a conclusion. Do you care? I guess not.] After Debris' demise, Neil, the singer, and the band's two guitar players, Andy and Brian, formed Ruin along with Stick from Doom.

This Ep was released in 1999 on Maximum Voice Production, a German label specialized in heavy hardcore music indeed since they also put out records for Dystopia, Sharpeville, Disaffect and Jobbykrust. After that Ep, Debris did one Lp on Panoptic Vision (Neil's own record label that also released the Disaffect discography, the last Tolshock Ep and the Scatha/Dagda split Ep. The man has great tastes) and recorded some other tracks that appeared on compilations after the band split up.

Musically, it is not irrelevant to see Debris as a meaningful continuation of what the Disaffect/Sedition/Scatha crew started. It is not a cheap copy at all, but you can definitely hear that the guitar player was also in Scatha (and that's definitely a compliment). It has this similarly dark, intricate and intense vibe, but it is also punkier (well, less metallic and crusty shall we say). The pace is mostly mid-tempo and I can't help thinking that if Scatha had covered Icons of Filth, or even One Way System, songs, it wouldn't have sounded too far from Debris. The vocals are absolutely outstanding, Neil's voice is deep and sounds adequately angry and desperate, a bit like Ste's from Extinction of Mankind or the bloke who sang in the short-lived Bomb Heaven. The addition of a second vocalist on some parts brings us some great Quarantine moments as well and overall, the four songs don't sound alike and have enough hooks and tunes, while remaining heavy and raw, to be really memorable.

Lyrically, Debris is far above the average. I don't mean to be too harsh on the numerous authors of haikus about nuclear wars, but whoever wrote these lyrics clearly spent more time thinking about the system of alienation we are all entangled in than choosing a name in "dis" that hasn't been already taken. "See the reality" is a song about how we create our own slavery with the creation of profit from our own labour. This profit is created according to envy and greed and not according to need. The song emphasizes the self-control, self-policing that is encouraged to keep us chained to consumerism and the production of goods and makes a parallel between the panopticon and our current political and economic system. "Enlightened age" tackled the difficult subject of child abuse and instead of calling for lynching mobs, focuses on the contradictory feelings that the survivors will be faced with. "My friend" is about friendship and betrayal, pain and suffering. Finally, "Debris" is an original animal-rights song (is that an oxymoron?) that puts an emphasis on the disembodiment of animals and humans alike, a litteral absence of flesh that signifies the growing riches of cannibalistic doctors.

In addition to the lyrics, a long text which could be seen as the lyrics' explanation is included. It deals with the panopticon, the perfect surveillance system, the perfect prison and the constant gaze, the constant supervision and control that such a concept entails. The text is fairly long but it is extremely interesting and sound as it ties several apparently disconnected subjects together such as the social reproduction of class injustices, child abuse, animal exploitation and the internalization of social codes and how we are even conned into strengthening the grip that the powers that be already have upon us. Really top notch anarchopunk we are dealing with here, like a more mature re-writing of old Icons of Filth songs. The Lp is just as good, a bit more polished in terms of sound, but just as smart and angry in terms of content.                

Monday 10 December 2012

Punx Riot compilation Lp 2000

Since today is my birthday, I have decided to make this post special by selecting a... picture disc! Now, I know many of us hate them for several reasons. First, the sound is not quite as good on a picture disc as on a regular record. Second, they are seen as being an unnecessary and even tasteless waste of coloured vinyl. I don't really enjoy them myself but I do have a soft spot for this one and needless to say that its fantastic line-up is no coincidence.

This compilation is entitled "Punk riot" which is either the greatest or the cheesiest name ever (the two don't have to be mutually exclusive actually). It was released on Fight 45 records in 2000, a Parisian label created by people from Obnoxious (and later on, Disgusted), a 90's hardcore punk band that would have sat comfortably on this record. Fight 45 also released records from Nervous Tension, Truth Decay and Oi Polloi but I don't think the label is still active.

"Punk riot" epitomized the old saying "all killers, no fillers" and one glance at the tracklist is more than enough to convince anyone: Oi Polloi, Varukers, Disorder, Substandard, Detestation, Truth Decay, Mass Murderers, Riot/Clone and Beergut 100. As you can see, this is very much a 90's British hardcore-punk compilation - Detestation and Mass Murderers being the exceptions here - and "Punk riot" could be a perfect introduction to the genre for someone who is clueless about it (the poor sod).

The first side opens with "Guilty" by Oi Polloi, one of their very best songs recorded in 1994, about the double standards class justice and how being poor and angry can get you in a lot of trouble while the rich can count on their chums in court to get them out of it. This is fast and angry Oi Polloi, a band that, for some unfathomable reasons, is quite well-known and respected but is also underappreciated and overlooked by the "cool kids". Is it because the "wrong kind of punks" is into Oi Polloi? Or is it just because they didn't split up after just one Lp and one Ep and thus don't deserve cult status? Who knows... What I do know, is that their first two Ep's ("Resist the atomic menace" and "Outrage"), their side of the split with Toxik Ephex and the "In defence of our Earth" Lp are definitive metallic anarchopunk classics akin to Anti-System, Pro Patria Mori, early Sacrilege and AOA. There is another Polloi song on the B side, "We must combat", a metallic number about sexism.

Beergut 100 also have two songs on "Punk riot": "Warmonger" and "Fist full of copper". They were a pretty straight-up hardcore punk band from Scotland, fairly typical of the 90's. Fast songs with anthemic singalongs as chorus, not unlike late Varukers. Beergut 100 did one album, from which their songs are taken, before some members started the better and heavier Social Insecurity, who would give way to Afterbirth after its demise.

I already did an epic post about Substandard so I am not going to rave about them again. The two songs on this compilation are "Discount" and "Shit head", two absolute scorchers. In my opinion, Substandard were one of the very best UK bands of their time: they managed to take the Antisect/Anti-System's style, speed it up a bit and keep the anger and intensity all the way. Great, great band.

Truth Decay were another English punk band from the 90's, and while not as fast as Beergut 100, they were still very much in the same vein. Hard-hitting punk-rock, like a modern version of the Exploited or One Way System. For some reason, Truth Decay, though quite representative of the 90's wave, strike me as being a bit too generic for their own good. But then, their two songs, "Countdown 98" and "Race riot", a DOA cover, may just be just a notch below the other bands of this compilation.

I have always loved Riot/Clone. They remained true to their anarchopunk ideals and to their old-school punk-rock background. Their last album, "Success", is worthy of your attention and I would definitely recommend it to anyone into genuine punk-rock with guts and soul. The two songs on "Punk riot" are two of their best: "Chumbawanka" and "One less parasite" recorded in the late 90's. "Chumbawanka" was taken from the anti-Chumba compilation Ep that also featured Oi Polloi and the Bus Station Loonies and illustrated in a somewhat straight-forward fashion what Riot/Clone thought of Chumba signing to EMI. "One less parasite" was originally found the "Aftermath" compilation. These two songs are classic Riot/Clone: super aggressive and snotty vocals, thick guitars and mid-paced punk-rock. Funnily enough, the vocal style of the singer, Dave Floyd, happened to be a great influence on Quorthon from Bathory, though I doubt it is something mister Floyd boast about.

Mass Murderers are often seen as one of the best hardcore punk bands of the 90's in France and incidentally they reformed only a few months ago. Located in Saint-Brieuc, Brittany, the band toured the UK in the mid-90's, a sensible move as they seemed to have been heavily into that sound. Mass Murderers were probably a little more metallic than their British counterparts but they fortunately never fell for the metalcore genre (I would tend to think they are much too punk for that). Take classic bands like One Way System or English Dogs and mix it up with some Kuru or Maggot Slayer Overdrive and you'll get an idea. Mass Murderers were a crushingly powerful band and one of the very few French ones who could do that genre as well as the Brits. The two songs of the compilation are "Drive me sick" and "Dirty money", both from their 97 Lp "DRIP".

Do I really need to introduce Disorder? Probably not. The two songs here are "Free society" and "Anti-social reject" from their late 90's "Sliced punx on meat hooks" era, although the versions included on "Punk riot" are not the same as the Lp's. Indeed, they are much rawer and distorted and could have easily been lifted from "Under the scalpel blade". There is no information about the recordings on the compilation but they could be live or rehearsal versions. Whatever the nature of these songs is, they are excellent and everything you expect from Disorder, that is to say an unhealthy amount of snottiness, contempt for society, manic yells and distoted guitars.

The Varukers also have their two songs on this one and again, I don't think they need much introduction on my part. Judging from the recent reissues, it seems there is renewed interest in the band, something I can only applaude as they were one of the first bands I got really into as a teenager.                   The two tracks here are "Fuck you up" and "What are you gonna do?" from their 1998 "Murder" Lp which is the best thing they recorded in the 90's (in fact, I would argue they haven't done anything better since despite the overall quality of their subsequent records). At that time, the line-up included Kieran from the Restarts on bass guitar and Kev from Cerebral Fix on drums. The songs could summarize what 90's UK punk was all about. Still bollox but still here indeed.

Finally, Portland's Detestation have the one song, "Think it through". Detestation were the follow-up of Masskontroll and were probably renowned for having an excellent and instantly recognizable female singer. Although the band is often wrongly described as "crust" (but really, anything remotely noisy can be tagged as such these days), they played fast and pummelling hardcore-punk with a thrash influence, like Crude SS meet Potential Threat. The song's recording is quite rough so I am guessing it might be a live or a demo version. Anyway, though one would not necessarily think of Detestation in the same light as all the aforementioned bands, they fit just fine on this compilation.

Aesthetically speaking, the picture disc is well-done, with the drawing of a studded punk on the one side and pictures of the bands included on the other. The perfect Christmas present for your nephew who is just getting into Green Day.

Wednesday 5 December 2012

Punktured: A benefit compilation for Rape Crisis cdr 2003

I lived in Manchester during the school year 2003/2004. While I enjoyed the constant rain and the sea of red bricks that gratified the eye, in terms of punk gigs, more often than not one had to go to Leeds or Bradford. This said, I still had the pleasure to see the great External Menace twice in Manch and I was very surprised to see that they were playing before only 30 people (I was told that people had seen them too much and didn't really care anymore... go figure). Another highlight was seeing The Ex and FuckHatePropaganda there on my 20th birthday while on shrooms. But regardless, the Leeds/Bradford area was often a choice destination punkwise.

I got this cd at a gig where Extinction of Mankind, Bomb Blast Men, Violent Minority and some band from Norway I can't remember the name of played. A great night and my first EOM live experience. The compilation was sold by the people who organized the gig, two lovely persons who ran the Punktured collective and also did a zine called Headwound. The comp includes 28 bands, all of them having played at some point for Punktured in 2002 and 2003. It was a benefit release for the Rape Crisis Federation, an independent organization that offered moral and technical support for rape victims. At the time (and sadly, I doubt things have changed since on that level), the government was busy spending money dropping bombs on civilians and didn't really have time or money to help rape survivors get through their ordeal. The idea of the compilation was to raise some funds in order to help Rape Crisis, which epitomizes the "act locally" motto. A text was included with the cd explaining the motivations behind Punktured's support to Rape Crisis. Sound and sensible indeed.

The bands on the cd are pretty diverse as I remember the people behind Punktured being more concerned with what bands had to say and with their DIY ethics than with their musical style (or abilities!). Neverthelesse, the selection is not only a fine example of DIY ideals put into practice, it also illustrates what the scene was like almost 10 years ago, with some 90's bands who managed to survive until the early 2000's and young bands who had just formed. To be honest, not all the bands are amazing here. The highlights for me are Active Slaughter and Bug Central (old-school anarcho punk reminiscent of Conflict, Riot/Clone and Anthrax), Anarchy Spanky, Kismet HC (long-running powerful anarcho band with great female vocals), Dog On A Rope, Eastfield and Chineapple Punx (both bands play tuneful snotty punk-rock), Dogshit Sandwich (excellent UK82-type band somewhere between Abrasive Wheels, Uproar and Peter and the Test Tube Babies) and, of course, Spanish legends Sin Dios and their classic hardcore anthem "Alerta antifascista". There are a couple of local bands well worth checking as well like Dead Pets and Cop Car Pile Up (who both the reggae/ska punk thing), Indicator, Mafia vs Ninja or Bickle's Cab.

On the whole, it is a very enjoyable record and the diversity of bands, from Fuckhatepropaganda's super fast crusty hardcore to Left For Dead's vintage punk-rock sound, from Anal Beard's terrible, and yet humorous, "music" to Freaks Union's modern punk-rock, ensures that everyone will find something he or she likes. All the bands' contacts are included and there is a nice cut'n'paste of the various gig posters.