Punch Drunk V – Review

 Punch Drunk

Volume V (TKO)
by Duke Crevanator

TKO has a solid history of releasing comps that provide an excellent sampling of the eclectic musical stylings that make up their roster. In previous incarnations of this series, there’ve been a few stinkers that snuck past security, but Volume V is a pure winner.

Ya see, I have my own personal ranking for songs that are jotted down next to the band name as I listen through the record a few times. They are as follows:
FG (fucking great)
G (good)
Eh (an “eh” sound coinciding with a shrug of the shoulders)
S (sucks)
H (I hate this band on a personal level the song is so bad)

I’m hoping now that I’ve published my revised rules for a review, I can just submit one word reviews in the future. Somehow, I have a feeling Scott won’t be into that. Oh well.

Anyway, this record, came out with a total breakdown rating as follows:
A total of 11 songs by TKO bands received the coveted FG rating: The Riffs, The Stitches, Tommy And The Terrors, The Wretched Ones, Antiseen, Limecell, Strychnine, U.S. Bombs, Smut Peddlers, Texas Terri And The Stiff Ones, and Slaughter And The Dogs.

Within that ranking you can already get a good idea of how eclectic TKO’s offering truly is. You have your destructo rock with Antiseen (doing a previously unreleased Ramones cover), kick-ass rock’n’roll with The Riffs, classic hardcore stylings with Limecell and U.S. Bombs, and so on. Fact is, it’s all worth listening to. All of these bands are worth the cheap price of this release.

Those bands earning a G (Good) rating, which considering how cynical and easily annoyed I am, is still pretty high praise were: The Partisans, New York Rel-X, Emergency, Class Assassins, Reducers SF, Hollywood Hate, Bonecrusher, Broken Bottles, The Butchers, and Radio One. What surprised me is that I actually considered many of the more overtly political songs this good. I have a very high standard for political songs. Let’s be honest with each other here, we all know most of them are written by people so stupid they shouldn’t be revealing how uninformed they are to the world, for their own sake, if not ours. Just because they love Jello Biafra doesn’t mean they should try to imitate him. They usually just sound like jackasses. HOWEVER, that rant aside, bands like Emergency and Bonecrusher pull it off well.

The remaining bands all received the “Eh” vote. In some cases, an Eh vote means the song had potential, but the recording just isn’t that good. In others, it’s that the song had definite appeal, but something just wasn’t quite right either with the vocals (some singers are just really, well, bad) or the lyrics irked me. The Generators, The Krays, The Boils, Adolf And The Piss Artists, and The Crumbs land here.