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Notes From The Underground

[whitespace] Mari Yoneda Stockton Bridges: Mari Yoneda plays a fluid bass on the Gorehounds' latest.

Better Than Al:
The Gorehounds raise the riff rafters high on new album

BACK WHEN the Gorehounds released their Much More Than That Bright Boy demo, the New Kids ruled the concert circuit and the star-crossed Backstreet Boys couldn't even finagle their way backstage. Even my mom's Misfit tribute album, My Name Is Mommy and No, You Won't Go Out and Kill Tonight, had come out since then, but I kept pining for a Gorehounds CD. Now it's finally here, just in time for Halloween; regrettably, however, Bring the Slopes to Stockton turns out to be the musical equivalent of Waterworld. Here's $50 for a name change--might I suggest Borehounds?

Ah, I can't lie--this album rocks higher than the fumes filtering around Kresge College! A fortress of riff-mad instrumentals conjures up a faraway soundscape where blood rules and bad guys die. The ominous opener, "Circuit City," propels the metallic onslaught. "More Aliens Less Dudes," besides having the best title in modern history, features some awesomely fluid bass from Mari. Her adorable vocals on "Megumi Tsukemono" earn two severed thumbs up. Lee's insane drumming sticks in your head like duct tape on a gimp--check out the fills on "Black Cat." The slick and passionate guitar opuses courtesy of Chris have more bite than the meat being seasoned at Motel Hell.

Machine-gun guitars roar on "Carchase" and groove like a Ford Bronco down I-5. Each song fuses intricate progressions with unorthodox tempos that proceed to slash conventional rock at the seams. "Late Fee," a wild video-store revenge tale, earns high marks for its wiseguy "I won't pay" chorus. An old Gorehound acoustic gem, "Uncle Reege," will become a campfire song sensation. Be kind and rewind all 12 killer tunes of the sacred Gorehound kind. As Elvis lamented while slaving over peanut butter-and-jelly sandwich #33 in a bathroom stall, "They ain't nothing but Gorehound dogs, kicking ass all the time." Write them at 130 Hubbard St., Santa Cruz 95060.

Head Banger

Concussion #5 is another incredible installment from a zine that clearly is, as its motto boasts, "Better than a hole in the head." It's actually way better than the members of the "rock" band Hole standing on their heads too. Concussion travels to a Skateworks demo in Redwood City, to Indonesia and Baja for surf updates and to an in-line skating/ultimate-fighting fest in Zimbabwe--these cats get around. This bold zine itches the skate/surf/music niche in all the right places. Issue #5 is also packed with interviews with NOFX (circa 1989) and H2O and a stylish chat session with legendary low-brow artist Robert Williams. Neat Supersuckers and Zeke concert photos too.

The story about waiting in line at Zachary's is fun, while a humorous "Going Deaf" article warns all you concert-goers that if you don't start wearing ear plugs now, your friends are going to make fun of you to your face and you won't know it. Remember, folks, while some plugs feel better than others, ear plugs are cool too. The "Road Rage" story/quiz is entertaining--study it next time you spend your entire Saturday afternoon moving three blocks in a sweaty station wagon along 41st Avenue. Concussions for everyone! PO Box 1024, Santa Cruz 95061 or on the Web.


Tsunami Bomb plays with Boy Kicks Girl, Curbside, Nothing Substantial and Outtaline at the Southside Community Center (5585 Cottle Rd., San Jose) this Saturday (Oct. 3) at 7pm.
By Matt Koumaras

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From the October 1-7, 1998 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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