Sight & Sound

Is this the best Rancid cover you’ll ever hear?

The art of the punk rock cover comes with many layers of success and failure. While punk bands covering songs not of the genre has degraded into nothing but a cash-cow of woeful ‘Punk Goes…‘ renditions, punk bands covering other punk bands has been something more of a sign of respect and homage than anything else (mostly). Rancid have been covered on several occasions, probably most notably by NOFX, but few have come across as wonderfully eclectic yet still urgent as Chicago punk rockers The Mizzerables‘ and their cover of “Olympia, WA”.

Who are The Mizzerables? They’re a snotty, melodic punk band from the Windy City, noted for its stellar early-to-mid 90s lineage of Screeching Weasels and Lawrence Armses, good pizza and mediocre football. And now, a rather terrific bluegrassy cover of a Rancid song. Well, at least it should be.

But The Mizzerables’ generosity doesn’t stop here, they’re actually offering up their latest full length album, Every Last Stitch, for FREE! No email required, no nothing… but it would be nice of you to send them a few bucks because having listened to the thing, it’s pretty damn good if you love short, melodic, snotty punk rock songs the city seems to produce like an assembly line.

The cover is part of the band’s series of covers which has seen them tackle Neil Young and Linda Perry’s famous one hit wonder entry “What’s Up?”, but really, this third offering is by far the best. Although, their “What’s Up?” cover really is good too.

But we’re here for their take on Rancid, and it’s much better than NOFX’s take of the same song.

Check it out:


Alkaline Trio have debuted the fourth song from their upcoming new album My Shame Is True. Slated to drop April 2nd on Epitaph, the album is the follow- up to 2010’s studio effort This Addiction.

I’ve been partial to Skiba songs moreso than Andriano ones in the past, and so far, nothing has changed. The album’s first single, “I Wanna Be A Warhol”, can be heard here.



Video: The Lawrence Arms – “Them Angels Been Talkin”

Chicago punk rockers The Lawrence Arms have debuted their new video for the track “Them Angels Been Talkin”. The track comes from their 2009 EP Buttsweat And Tears.

The group have also been announced as performers for Asian Man Records’ upcoming 15th Anniversary extravaganza where Mike Park is attempting to reunite every single Asian Man band to perform for the festival.

On a side note, Brendan Kelly still has the best alcohol-fueled voice in punk rock.


New Screeching Weasel album, First World Manifesto, due March

Don’t look now but the latest incarnation of infamous Chicago punk band Screeching Weasel will release its first studio album in ten years next March. Ben Weasel had been keeping fans updated on the progress of the new album through the last few months but it looks like the concrete details have now been revealed!

The new album, titled First World Manifesto, is due out March 15, 2011 via Fat Wreck Chords. It will be the first album since 2000’s Teen Punks In Heat and the first for Fat Wreck since’s 1998’s Television City Dream (which was recently re-released via the label). Here’s the word straight from the Weasel’s mouth;

“So we’re back in the fold. But coming back after a ten year layoff? Believe me, sportsfans, nobody knows better than me what it’s like to try to hop back in the saddle after a, uh, “hiatus” and reclaim your former glory, so we’ve pulled out all the stops on this one. From pure pop-punk ditties like “Baby Talk” and “Frankengirl” to point-and-laugh-at-the-punk-rocker anthems like “Little Big Man” and “Follow Your Leaders,” this is everything you could ask for from the band the humorless twats love to hate and the cultured, refined connoisseurs of quality rock and roll love to love. The album is titled First World Manifesto and will feature 14 songs. Mike Kennerty is producing and Justin Perkins is engineering at his studio, Mystery Room, and at the Blasthouse here in Madison. The album will be out March 15th.

The band’s upcoming touring plans have also been given a bit of a stir, with Weasel saying that no international dates are on the cards just yet, but if anyone wants to make an offer, feel free; “if you want to see us play somewhere, even in some third world country like Ireland or Canada, make an offer, or have the blokes in charge do it. We’ve been having a blast playing shows again for the past year and a half and we’re looking forward to more of the same in 2011 and beyond!


Australia needs this.


Suns offer double EP for free download

Chicago-based indie rockers Suns are giving listeners exactly what they want; free music and lots of it. The six-piece progressive indie band features members of Blame Twlight, Eli, They Found Me They Named Me, and Wax On Radio, combining their many elements into a richly textured, epic-sounding flurry of sound. Think a frenzied Manchester Orchestra.

The two EPs, Close Calls in the U.S. Space Program and The Howl and the Many, are available for download on the band’s website. This download comes recommended! Why? Because why would you steal crap music when you get the good kind for free? If you are not convinced, check out a streaming MP3 below.

Suns are also playing a select group of shows around the Chicago area starting at the end of the month.

Audio stream:
Suns – Everything Changes (from the album Close Calls in the U.S. Space Program)

Show dates:
OCT 27 – Chicago, IL @ Schubas
OCT 30 – Dekalb, IL @ The House Cafe
NOV 03 – Chicago, IL @ Double Door