THE GRUESOMES: Cave-In.

13 12 2020

Back in 2000 Canada’s finest, The Gruesomes released the effortlessly cool record; Cave-In.

Go forward 2 decades, and this record is getting re-released by Alien Snatch!Records. There’s even some new artwork for the record too.

If you know The Gruesomes, you will know that they are probably one of the greatest bands ever! Their slick and just effortlessly cool sound is timeless. Their first record came out in 1986 (I think) and they’ve had this cult-like following.

I’ve been obsessed with them for so long, and when I heard that Cave-In was getting re-released, I just knew I had to go back and listen to it and try to put into words how great the record is. Of course Tyrants of Teen Trash will always own my heart but Cave-In is such a solid record. It came out 20 years ago, but it sounds like it could have come out back in the 60s. That’s what is so special to me about The Gruesomes- you never knew what decade they could have come from. They take you back and forth through time, and I think Cave-In is a prime example of this.

Stop It,Girl is a beautiful woeful number telling some girl to stop dragging your heart around. The Gruesomes do this so well. They spew out the songs of longing and heartache in such a beautiful and romantic way. But by no means is done in a soppy fashion. No thank you. Not round here. There’s that Punk like snarl in the songs, such as You’re Not The Boss Of Me and it’s the perfect fuck you to someone who has gone too far. There’s a hypnotic Psych groove in this one, and it’s definitely one of my favourites on the record. 

Going back and listening to this record, and knowing it came out 20 years ago but it takes you further back than that. For me, listening to this record is just like discovering The Gruesomes for the first time all over again. These 14 songs fully justify why I love this band so much, and why having this record re-issued is such a great thing. It will turn more people onto this band. Bands like The Gruesomes, The Mummies and The Cramps just had something so unique and beautifully creepy about their sound. They made you feel okay with being absolutely weird. The three greatest bands of all time, for sure.

Cave-In has everything you could possibly want from a record. It’s got rebellious songs to lose your mind to and songs to just really treasure. I just adore this band a hell of a lot. Come And See Me (I’m Your Man) is such a wild song. The vocals on this are so raw and it just makes you wish you  could go to a show so badly. I think it’s one of their most underrated records, but to be honest the band in general are just criminally underrated.

If this was my first ever time listening to The Gruesomes, I’d be utterly blown away. But you know, you still get that same buzz if you’ve heard it a billion times before. Serves You Right is the one you need to blast a little extra loud. It’s a real bratty and snotty number that should get you moving.

I just absolutely love this band SO much, and to be able to hear this re-issue and to know that The Gruesomes will gain some new fans from this is just so fucking cool!





J’AI PEUR DES CRABES.

12 08 2018

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Recently I’ve found it pretty difficult to sit down and write something about music I’ve been listening to. I’ve either convinced myself the words I write are pointless, or I just do something else instead. There’s probably a bunch of reasons why I’ve been doing this, and probably a main one is me after years of putting it off, finally committing to watching American Horror Story. This is what having too much spare time has done, and I’m fine with it. But anyway, more importantly I’ve accidentally found a band that I am sure to become obsessed with, and that band is J’ai Peur Des Crabes (I think it translates as ‘I am scared of crabs’ which is a fully justifiable fear.)

Hailing from Montreal, well…that’s all I can tell you. There’s virtually nothing about them online aside from their Bandcamp and Facebook page. There’s not much for me to go on, but that’s alright. I’ll make it work. The music speaks for itself anyway. I have no idea if it is one person or a bunch of musicians, but what I do know is that this is some of the finest Garage Rock I’ve heard of late. There is something really exceptional about them, and with two records into their career-it pretty safe to say that they are the best band you’ve not really heard of. In an ideal world, they’d be huge and everyone would know them. That’s not the case right now, but there’s time.

J’ai Peur Des Crabes are like The Doors running head first into Jack White’s guitar with The Pretty Things and The Vagrants waiting for them with open arms. But there’s more to it, there’s a lot more bite to their sound. They are unapologetically loud and they fully show this on the song Pierre-François which isn’t even 2 minutes long. There’s this brilliant kick to it, and so far I’m calling it as my favourite song by them. I just want to listen to it on repeat for hours. It’s the last song on their first release, MAAAAD which came out in November last year.

Last week, they released Cocobongo which consists of five songs that step away from MAAAAD. There’s a wilder sound to this record. It’s like The Cramps and The Mummies got together and created this beautiful monster. If you’ve heard of London based Night Shades then you’ll love J’ai Peur De Crabes. There’s this excellent Psychobilly sound that has a strong Garage Rock backbone, and it’s addictive. They’re the kind of band I could happily play over and over, and not get bored. City Walls is a song that reminds me slightly of Dream Baby Dream by one of my all time favourites, Suicide. There’s something haunting but beautiful about the song. I think it’s the intro and the way the song is sung more than anything. It’s a beautiful song, and it is most definitely one of the highlights of the record, especially when the guitar kicks in during the last minute and this wealth of urgency and fury takes the band over, especially the vocals. For me, it’s probably my favourite on this record but of course with more listens I’ll change my mind.

Writing about a band I know nothing about is sometimes tough, but in this instance it didn’t feel so bad. The fact that there’s virtually nothing about them on the internet adds to the mystery. I don’t know if it’s because they are still pretty new or they just don’t need to be everywhere in order to be heard. Well, whatever their reasons are is none of my business anyway. I love the music, and I can’t wait to hopefully hear more from them.

There’s something really interesting about their sound, and they just make you feel as if you’ve been listening to them for years and years. Partially familiar but also a world away from what you know. If a band can make you feel like that so early on, then you’ve found one of the great ones.