Red Cities “Soft Target” L.P (MPR-016): The Big Takeover Magazine 81 (Fall 2017) – “Best Albums of 2017”
Lincoln Journal Star: November 2017
The 667s “Shirley” LP (MPR-015) : The Big Takeover Magazine 78 (Spring 2015)
Red Cities “Red Cities” L.P. (MPR-014) and The 667s “Cheer Up, Buttercup” L.P. (MPR-012): The Big Takeover Magazine 77 (Fall 2014)
Lincoln Journal Star: August 2014
Red Cities, “Red Cities.” To make “Red Cities,” its debut album, Red Cities added eight tracks to the incendiary four-song EP it released last year.
The new tracks don’t differ all that much from their predecessors’ ’70s punk-rooted rock ‘n’ roll blast of guitars, drums and vocals.
“Worker Song” is, for example, a rave up out of the Iggy and the Stooges school. “Plastic People” is a slamming riff-rocker, and “Song for Alice” loads up its big chorus as it rides the driving rhythms of bassist Eric Aspengren and drummer Josh Leeker, and takes off with a slashing Matt Bokovoy guitar solo.
That said, “The Same Without You” opens up in the verse, providing more space for Byron Anway’s vocals, the sprawling anthemic “Hannah” has a ‘90s Nirvana-esque feel with its loud-soft-loud arrangements and Anway’s pleas, and the echoing “Military Song” opens up and quiets down for Anway’s story of bouncing from city to city as a kid growing up in a military family.
It’s smartly followed by the ringing, rocking “Burnout” and the 1-minute, 22-second snarl of “Fat Like Your Daddy,” two of the songs from “Build It Up, Tear It Down.” Then comes the taut assault of “You Should Have Told Me So,” the swing and wail of “”Come Now Baby” and the edgy “Song 10.”
That’s the B-side of the vinyl album that’s being released on Modern Peasant Records, an indie garage rock/punk label that’s based in Washington and Oklahoma.
A tip — “Red Cities” is a record that was made loud at Fuse Recordings by producer Charlie Johnson, so crank it up. The louder it is, the better it sounds.
Crank it up is just what Red Cities will do Saturday at the Zoo bar when it releases “Red Cities” at an 8 p.m. show that also will feature Domestica, Bogusman and Dirty Talker. Grade: A – L. Kent Wolgamott
The Sinners “Drunk on the Lord’s Day” L.P. (MPR-013): The Big Takeover Magazine 76 (Spring 2014)
John Wayne’s Bitches “Bitched Out” E.P. (MPR-011) and Red Cities “Build it Up, Tear it Down” E.P. (MPR-010): The Big Takeover Magazine 74 (Spring 2013)
Lincoln Journal Star: June 2013
The 667s “Mondons of the World Unite!” E.P. (MPR-009): The Big Takeover Magazine 73 (Fall 2012)
The Putters “Good Friends with Your Mother” E.P. (MPR-008): The Big Takeover Magazine 71 (Fall 2011)
Zombie vs. Shark “Wartime Sugar” vinyl L.P. (MPR-007) and “Cold Machine” Single (MPR-004): The Big Takeover Magazine 71 (Fall 2011).
The 667s L.P. (MPR-666): The Big Takeover Magazine 72 (Spring 2012).
Zombie vs. Shark “Dog’s and Guns” E.P. (MPR-003): The Big Takeover Magazine 70 (Spring 2011)
“Zombie vs. Shark: Dogs and Guns/Wunderkind”: Matt Carney, Oklahoma Gazette, 11.22.2011
The group does just that with this 7-inch release, recorded back in the spring at Bell Labs in Norman, mastered by Garrett Haines at Pittsburgh’s Treelady Studios and distributed in old-school fashion by Seattle’s Modern Peasant Records. “Wunderkind” and “Dogs and Guns” are the two tracks, each a piston-pumping blast of up-tempo, hooky guitar rock fit to soundtrack any formal protest you may be planning.
Guitarist Robert Scafe pointed that out recently when he said “Dogs & Guns” was appropriate for the violence associated with the country’s rash of Occupy protests. The lyric “Do the math, girl / You’re getting the shaft / That’s a natural fact!” succeeds to combine this notion with a sexual innuendo, which is a major victory for rock ’n’ roll, as far as I’m concerned.
In everything they do — aesthetic, lyrics, garish performances — the guys behind Zombie vs. Shark challenge conventional lifestyles without wandering off into sonically dissuasive territory. May they forever rock. —Matt Carney