On the Slab – 14

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We the People: You Burn Me Up and Down b/w In the Past: 7”

This single contains two slammers from Orlando garage-groovers We the People. The band’s single “Mirror of Your Mind” is a 60s- classic with the distinction of appearing in the Nuggets series. Both of the songs on this single have a unique groove. These songs were coupled from two different We the People singles released separately in ‘66. “You Burn Me Up and Down” is a mid-paced burner with an authoritative fuzz guitar riff. It’s hard not to nod along. “In the Past” carries a little more psychedelic jangle framing ascending harmonies. It’s got a catchy riff: a good soundtrack for sitting in a field. Both songs are solid. It gives you value for your teenage-shutdown buck. If you’re into repros, it’s a don’t miss. – Billups Allen (OKtay)

 

 

 

Among These Dark Blueberry Mills: Trailer + Pre-order

Among These Dark Blueberry Mills

 

ATDBM is done and in production.

Pre-order the comic here:

 

Among These Dark Blueberry Mills

You may think Earth is in bad shape, but there are two alien species that would love to have it. Written and drawn by Billups Allen, Among These Dark Blueberry Mills is my first a long-form sci-fi comic. I hope to make it a short series. $6 plus 2.50 shipping.

$8.50

Review: Pain and Glory

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I got to review the new Pedro Almodóvar film Pain and Glory for Razorcake.

Pain and Glory

 

I also still have copies of the zine Razorcake did for the article I wrote about him a few years ago. Or pick one up at razorcake.org.

One Punk’s Guide: The Films of Pedro Almodovar

Gorsky Press is making zines of some of the One Punk’s Guide articles. I feel fortunate to have a third published from an article I wrote in 2010. I have copies available here for $2.00. That includes postage.

$2.00

Slab, Slab,What Have Ye Done? – 13

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United Mutation: Dark Self Image: LP
This collection is a fitting tribute to one of D.C.’s most overlooked bands. United Mutation played fast and hard during the early days of D.C. punk. UM’s thrash-velocity hardcore beats and gravel-tinged vocals helped develop speed in the Nations’ Capitol. This 26-song collection was remastered at Inner Ear Studios. The collection compiles tracks from recording sessions for several of the band’s singles. Songs from Fugitive Family and Kyo Ki, and Götterdämmerung 7”s appear on the LP along with six previously unreleased tracks. That’s 26 short blasts of furious punk with growling vocals the likes of which became a standard in punk and grind.

The band’s sound is driven by brutal guitar distortion with echo creating chaos. Deep growl vocals emanate from a din of reverb-laden guitar and high speed hardcore beats. “Fugitive Family”, the tile track from their first single, opens with a melodic ride up and down the opening riff. The song elevates from the heat of the drums, breaking for a frantic and over-reverb-ed solo and descends until all that’s keeping the song afloat is distorted bass. Musically a lot happens in a short time. The songs stay punk while offering a strategically short psychedelic ride in less than two minutes.

The album comes with a 24-page booklet worth the price of purchase. The art direction of the band has its own merit. Collage-style flyers and album covers evoke the era of politically charged punk without being derivative. The artwork is bleak and often minimalistic without using typical imagery. Sci-fi and political themes clash for quick jabs of sarcastic humor and Reagan-era commentary. The whole thing comes on quality paper stock. Getting it sent to you feels like getting an art book in the mail. Radio Raheem has produced a nice product: a lost document from the early punk era with a hint of indecipherable transmission from another planet mixed in. The band played a lot of shows but never traveled much out of the D.C. area. Hopefully this excellent LP will shine light on a criminally underrated band. This is one of the most important and full-on look-backs to come out in a while. Don’t miss this one. – Billups Allen (Radio Raheem)

 

What to do in Memphis: May whatever day it is, 2020

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Obviously there’s nothing much going on regarding screenings or bands we like. But for some new input, Indie Memphis has a movie club going.  Movie Club. 

Besides being a neat idea, they are making available the recent documentary Other Music.

The rental will be available from now until May 15th. Part of the proceeds of this rental from I.M. are going to Shangri-La Records and Goner Records here in Memphis to help keep these two stores going.

So if you were planning to attend a screening, or were going to rent it anyway, check it out through Indie Memphis and help both Indie Memphis and Memphis record stores out while you’re at it. I’m a member if Indie Memphis and it’s a great organization worth supporting. And the makers of Other Music must really be facing a challenge releasing a film during this time.

Hope you are all well. BA

Slab- 12

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The See-Saw: 3-song E.P.: 7”
This debut single from The See-Saw is full-on and snotty. “Get a Chance!” and “I Can Do It” both chug along with a ratchet-set guitar sound and unhinged solos. The song structures careen along as though it could all fall apart carrying solid rock melodies to the enth degree. The vocals have great mid-range blankness. They manage to be blasé and energetic at the same time. The B-side, “Don’t Cry Anymore”, is a mid-pace rocker with 50s-inspired intervals. All the punk ‘n’ roll elements are in place with this one. It’s a scorcher. – Billups Allen (Secret Mission Records)

 

April 16, 2020

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I’ve been hinting a lot about a new upcoming comic. I think I’ve settled on a title and artwork for the cover.

The title: Among These Dark Blueberry Mills.

I’m about 3/4 of the way done. I hope the time at home is gonna help me push it through.

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