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:

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Videos

New videos: Rancid, My Chemical Romance, Valencia

Black and white rehashes of old songs and videos we can’t see. It’s the theme for today’s music video roundup thanks to Rancid having not much to do these days and VEVO’s painfully annoying geographical restrictions.

Rancid have spend the last few months posting regular video updates of unreleased tracks. The band have now started posting videos from a new weekly session they are calling Rancid: Live from the Living Room. It will showcase recordings with no overdubs or studio manipulations or both acoustic and electric renditions of Rancid favourites from across their catalogue as well as the occasional cover. The first one, “Wrongful Suspicion”, is from their 1998 album Life Won’t Wait. You can watch it above.

My Chemical Romance of course, are on the tip of music’s tongue at the moment with the new album Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys seeing release in Australia today and in other regions next Monday. They’ve just released the brand new video for the single “SING” and those able, can watch it here.

Philly pop punkers Valencia are fresh from the release of their brand new album Dancing With a Ghost, and have now unveiled the video for the title track. The album is good, and I can only guess what the video is like, thanks to VEVO’s licensing restrictions. Watch it here.

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Podcast

Punk Rock Academy Fight Songs

Where do you start when it comes to the music and bands that would ultimately define you? How do you compress a lifetime’s worth into an hour? You can’t, but we tried. The punk explosion of the mid-90’s played in important part in many a suburban teenager’s life- and its long serving effects are still being felt today. While some will discredit the movement for homogenizing a previously (and notoriously) underground element, one can also see its positive influence on the world.

Speaking personally, without it, I would have never found the vast and incredibly life-altering artistic appeal of a scene buried deep beneath the surface. Whether it was hardcore, post-hardcore, indie, or punk in its earlier forms, bands like Green Day and Offspring were the gateways to enlightenment, activism, and self-reliance. For an hour, we tried to reminisce and share some of the bands that made it big during this time period, bands that went on to influence millions of listeners around the world. We also made time to remember some of those who were fueled by the mega label’s who sought to cash in on this trend, and ultimately sank some promising bands. We spun tracks by the previously mentioned, Rancid, No Use For a Name, Klover, Jawbreaker, Millencolin, and MxPx to name some.

To this day, these songs still resonate.

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Short Takes

Rancid records at Skywalker Ranch?

George Lucas’ famed Skywalker ranch is home to many projects in the entertainment world- as LA Times writer Geoff Boucher discovered. However, one of things he did notice (that perhaps wasn’t previously known), is that Skywalker Ranch is also home to a recording studio where bands like The Rolling Stones, Third Eye Blind, and Faith Hill have spent time in … but most recently, it was Epitaph punk rockers Rancid, who according to this report, were there for a recording session.

As we know, Rancid are currently working on their new record with Brett Gurewitz. No word of whether they’re actually recording there or whether its post-album touch ups and/or mixing.

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Music, Videos

Rancid recording with Brett Gurewitz

RancidLong serving punk band Rancid have once again tapped Epitaph head honcho and Bad Religion axeman Brett Gurewitz as the producer of their next LP. The upcoming record will be the first for the band since 2003’s Indestructible, their sole release on major label Warner Bros.

Members of the band have been busy with other projects since, with both Tim Armstrong and Lars Frederiksen releasing either solo records or side project albums. The new album will be the first without drummer Brett Reed, who recently departed and was replaced by ex-Used member Brandon Steineckert Continue reading

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