To be honest, I’m still not 100% certain how it happened, and it’s probably a cautionary tale on the excessive use of drinks made with apples, but not too long ago I ended up with a box of records in my boot heading down to Stoke On Trent, and there’s where I met Julian Stevenson, otherwise known as Juice Man and head honcho at Drunken Sailor Records. We quickly discovered that, as with all sane people, we have a shared love for County Durham’s finest, Martha, and also that Drunken Sailor Records is a veritable Aladdin’s Cave for punk rock enthusiasts, providing an outlet for bands on both sides of the Atlantic. These particular 3 recent releases are all from the USA, but get yourself on the website and you’ll find music from all over the globe.
In the order of fairness, we’ll go in alphabetical order. Basement Benders are from Chatanooga, and you’d be wise to (old Simpsons joke alert) choo choo choose their ST ep. Four perfect examples of no messing, “to the point” punk, nothing lasting longer than it needs to, all songs coming in around the 2 minute mark. Native Tongues is my favourite of the four, probably because it’s the most like the olden days when I was still wearing safety pins.
From Chatanooga we head north to Brooklyn and The Fur Coats. From what I’ve been able to find out the band are essentially Marc Ruvolo (musician and promoter) plus numerous band members depending on who’s actually available at the time. And judging on this release, Short-Brain it’s working out just fine! The opening track, One More Shot will have you jumping round the room in no time, perfect punk pop.
Last up, and I admit my favourite of the 3 is Marvelous Mark, with a 3 track 7″, Bite Me. The A Side is basically 3 minutes 19 seconds of wonderful summer pop, and bearing in mind where I live, I need all the help I can get to feel summery. The B Side carries on in the same vein, with Waiting and I’m Freaking Out, full of glorious sunny harmonies and power pop riffs. Brilliant.
This is just a minute selection of what Drunken Sailor Records has to offer. I’d guess that most punk fans will already be well aware of the label, but if not, get yourself over there now and pick up some great music.