steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Bert Switzer

"1977 - 2002" CD


Genres: punk, rock

Sep 15 - 21 2003

1977-2002 is a retrospective of drummer Bert Switzer's performances from the late seventies, with a few tunes from 1985 and 2002. The material is mostly punk (13 of the 19 tracks are live recordings of Switzer's infamous seventies outfit The Destroyed), and the most notable songs are undoubtedly those from the seventies. The Destroyed never released any music on record, and never even entered a studio, so these rare live recordings will be really valuable to fans of old punk. Also notable is a terribly recorded version of Ozzy Osbourne's "Crazy Train" from 1985, featuring 13-year-old Bobby Powers on electric guitar. It is an interesting item with a bit of novelty value, although some people might be tempted to skip over its ten minute duration. A neat Joe Rainbow recording is also put in for good measure, adding a bit of folky rock to the mix.

As mentioned before, the best part of this disc is The Destroyed material. The lo-fi recording perfectly captures the attitude of the band at the time; they casually blend melodic hooks with explosive guitars and primitive noise. One of their best tracks is "Power," which sounds very Stooges influenced ("Raw Power"?); it makes you wish that were there to witness them live. "The Ocean" is also remarkably fun, packed with terrific melody and pure punk energy. Good mixtape material. Two Monster Island tracks are also worth lending an ear to.

All in all, there's lots of good music on this disc, and fans of old punk are bound to find much to enjoy here.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 19 tracks, distributed by the artist, released 2003]