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Neo Boys – Sooner Or Later (KLP242) Reviewed in Dynamite Hemorrhage Issue #1

K Records blogged Erika Elizabeth’s NEO BOYS review from the first issue of Dynamite Hemorrhage fanzine….

krecs:

Dynamite Hemorrhage #1The following review of the Neo Boys’ Sooner Or Later [KLP242] was found in the zine Dynamite Hemorrhage #1. 12663084084_0a726aa880_z

NEO BOYS – Sooner or Later 2xLP (KLP242)

“Nothing has changed/everything has changed since the brief five years that the Neo Boys existed from 1978 to 1983. Over two decades after four ladies in Portland, Oregon came together to make their own simultaneously uncertain & powerfully confident noise, women of the underground are still struggling to be recognized as equals with their male peers & the act of a girl picking up a guitar or a pair of drumsticks or a microphone is still a revolutionary act. Like their contemporaries the Wipers or the Rats (with the pre-Dead Moon Fred & Toody Cole), the Neo Boys’ approach to punk was one deeply rooted in the frustrations & nihilism bred in an era when Portland (and the Pacific Northwest in general) was still a fucked-up cultural backwoods; a place where it was up to the girls, queers, weirdos & freaks to channel their alienation into creating their own brand of smart & uncompromising musical rebellion as escape. In this LP’s linear notes, Neo Boys bassist KT Kincaid pays tribute to dozens of women who were crucial figures in the Northwest punk scene of the late ’70s/early ’80s, but in many ways, the list of their far-from-familiar names stands in contrast to some of the well-known men (the Dils, DOA, the Wipers, et al) billed on the show flyers & posters reproduced inside the gatefold sleeve, in case anyone needs more evidence that reissues like this one are vital, necessary corrections of past oversights that have denied so many brave women noisemakers their due.  
This anthology collects both of the Neo Boys’ proper releases (their self-titled 7” from 1980 & the Crumbling Myths EP from 1982) with a treasure trove of demo recordings, live tracks & other sonic ephemera previously at risk of being lost to the ages. You can literally hear their musical evolution, not just from the punk era, but also the transformation of their endearingly shaky & hesitant playing into boldly coloring outside of the lines, rejecting more rigid punk conformity in their creation of a blueprint for countless feminist punks of the future ( see: the before & after versions of stone-cold ’80s underground classic “Never Comes Down”). It’s no coincidence that modern torchbearers Grass Widow covered the Neo Boys “Time Keeps Time” side-by-side with Wire’s “Mannequin” on a recent single – hopefully this sprawling retrospective will make the Neo Boys an equally recognizable name in discriminating post-punk households, because it’s long overdue.”  
– Erika Elizabeth, Dynamite Hemorrhage #1, November 2013. Print.

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Right on. What do you think?

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Single of the Week: Nots – self-titled (Goner)

I’m a big fan of this record as well. There are some vocal histrionics you need to get comfortable with – and I’m quite comfortable – and the music is a wild ride of garage punk & panic pop. Another aces review from Dynamite Hemorrhage fanzine contributing editor Erika Elizabeth.

Single of the Week: Nots – self-titled (Goner)

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She said she was gonna do it, and then she did it. Erika Elizabeth, the exceptionally knowledegable and savvy WMUA disc jockey who left Western Massachusetts for Portland, OR, now has put together her second digital radio show/podcast, which you can download over on her blog.

Her “Expressway To Yr Skull” show has been vital to my discovery of multiple bands and to my rejuvenation/reawakening to the whys and wherefores of raw, underground rock and roll music – especially of the more obscure pop and female-fronted DIY/punk stuff. And she breaks the news over on the recent post that she’ll be a prime contributor to the upcoming Dynamite Hemorrhage print fanzine, which is coming along pretty fine, actually. Go and download years & years of her shows here – you’ll get yourself muscially schooled & perhaps be a more interesting person as a result.

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The single best music radio show I’ve heard since Mr. John Peel’s reign – or at least since my own – comes to an end tonight. Erika Elizabeth, whom I interviewed here, has been hosting “Expressway To Yr Skull” on Amherst, MA’s WMUA for about eight years now. She’s moving to the Northwest and taking her record collection with her, with the express promise of creating online-only shows on her laptop, which we need to aggressively pressure her to fulfill on if the shows don’t start hitting her website by, say, mid-August – what do you think?

I only discovered the show in 2011, but it really has been a game-changer for me & my ever-evolving rocknroll music tastes. As I wrote when I interviewed her, “Her record collection, and her ability to wield it like a weapon of knowledge and truth on-air, is phenomenal – and it’s all employed at a perfect intersection of deep-underground pop; 70s-80s British DIY and postpunk; 90s shoegaze and twee (stuff from lost 45s and cassettes that no one’s heard for two decades, I’m serious); garage punk; and a lot of noisy girl-helmed bands that had been lost in a patriarchal fog of several decades of disregard.”

Here’s an only partial list of bands I’ve either discovered or positively reevaluated since I started downloading each weekly 2-hour show: The Minders, Submarine Races, Unrest, Lung Leg, The Yummy Fur, The Godrays, My Bloody Valentine, Wilderness Children, Mil Mascaras, Joyride!, Priests, The Moodists, International Strike Force, Golden Starlet, Dear Nora, Blast Off Country Style, Moon Duo, Suburban Reptiles, Dog-Faced Hermans, The Wendy Darlings, Happy Refugees, UV Race, Liechtenstein, The Nixe, The Fizzbombs, Oh-OK, Free Kitten, Petty Crime, Bud & Kathy……and yeah, a lot more.

The final show’s on tonight at 8pm Eastern, 5pm Pacific, and you can listen here. Thanks to Erika for being such a rad tastemaker, and a big fare thee well for the upcoming move.

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Erika Elizabeth Made a Compilation For You

Just as she did for those of us who donated to WMUA this year because of her rad rocknroll show “Expressway to Your Skull”, disc jockey Erika Elizabeth made a “custom mix” of songs that she’s decided to not just share with donators, but with everyone. I asked her for a collection of female-fronted 90s punk/noise/pop, and I got what I asked for. 

I guess for some of those who said simply, “surprise me”, they got the all-covers mix “Reflect What You Are”. And now you get it as well. Maybe you should send her some money if you’re feeling guilty or if you’re a fan of the show like the rest of us in Dynamite Hemorrhage Nation are.

Erika Elizabeth Made a Compilation For You

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https://www.tumblr.com/audio_file/dynamitehemorrhage/41782909421/tumblr_mhe3z9PlYO1rex6a7?plead=please-dont-download-this-or-our-lawyers-wont-let-us-host-audio

Erika Elizabeth played this one last week from THE SIC ALPS on her Expressway to Your Skull radio show on WMUA, and I guess it helped me remember to go back to their 2012 album on Drag City that I didn’t like so much at first. Mea culpa. It’s terrific.

The band, and this track in particular, are mining a nice cross between “Exile on Main Street” Stones and Royal Trux’ mid-period swagger, and despite changing lineups multiple times, they’re still got a hell of a sound, once it sinks in & all.