October 30, 2008
Singles x 3 (Various labels)
Although Jay Reatard’s recent singles for Matador are about as enticing as a pickle injected with mayonnaise, I really loved much of Blood Visions as well as his work with the Reatards and Lost Sounds. At his best, he has a knack for penning punk anthems ala Killed by Death and the Adverts while adding his own oddball touches to the proceedings. His music is catchy, well-played, aggressive and epitomizes all that is wonderful about a three minute burst of anger and alienation. A lesser known offshoot of Mr. Reatard’s creativity is the Angry Angles, but their first three singles are just as addictive as his best work. It doesn’t stray far from the sound of Blood Visions, but its artsy-fartsy view of punk owes more to the Urinals and Screamers than the Adverts. There isn’t a need to pontificate upon its merits because it is just a simple, but enjoyably spastic listen that sticks in your craw. However, their cover of Wire’s “The 15th” is one of the best Wire covers ever recorded as it captures the cold worldview and resignation to cruel fate of the original.