Music News

Local Motion: End of Power and Geoff Useless

We here who grind away in the County Grind like to respect and promote our local efforts. In today's Local Motion, we look at a pair of releases by Boca Raton's Livid Records, a fine compendium of local and out-of-state acts that is rapidly becoming one of the "friendliest" independent labels in the U.S.

End of Power
Shackled to a Corpse
(Livid Records)

Slow, chuggy, and amped with what can only be a combination of crystal meth, cheapest-of-the-cheap bourbon, and no will to live is what San Diego's End of Power brings to the table on this eight-track effort. In the fine vein of outfits like Motörhead, Queens of the Stone Age, and Buzzov*en, expect brutal riffs coexisting with chunky bass lines over drumming that goes from military in nature to desperate blast beats. "No One Will Believe Me" opens it up in an almost funny fashion because it's kind of hard to believe at first that this is the metal alter-ego of Jon Cougar Concentration Camp/The Dwarves' Chris Fields, better-known for his pop-punk efforts.

Alongside him are Russell Guenther on bass and Erik Lukasik on drums, with additional vocals fronted by the Dwarves' legendary frontman, Blag Dahlia. The saga continues with aural bombs "So Say We All," the title track, a nice cover of Bowie's "Moonage Daydream," and the Orange Goblin-esque "Unchanged." The disc closes out with a trio of longer tracks that dive into slower realms and finally bring the pain home. I'm hard-pressed to asses whose "power" is coming to an end, but these fuckers are certainly beginning.

Geoff Useless
Tell Me What EP
(Livid Records)

Geoff Useless is better-known as the baby-faced man behind the Gut and as a former bass player with the Queers, but on this solo effort, he turns five deliciously crafted bubblegum punk gems that evoke the Beach Boys, Weezer, and early '90s Redd Kross with a slight country twang that might be attributed to the mostly acoustic format in which the tracks are presented. "Tell Me What" is a classic girl-influenced number, but before you get to forget the punk rock snot comes the 55-second long "Told You Once."

Not all his musings are about miscommunication, though; the slowest and longest ditty is "Comin Round Again" followed by his punk rock flag flying high on "I'll Always Be (Me)" before closing it out with the snot of "Beware." Additional players on the recording are Dave Strong on bass, Brian Cassavitis on drums, Matt Logie on organ, and Joe Stracquatanio on banjo and harmonica. This is a very limited release (read: 100 copies or so), so pick it up quick for the $4 price tag.

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Abel Folgar