For those of you interested in the roots of the New York rock scene, I present to you “Shut up and Bleed”. A compilation of late 70’s “No Wave” music. “No Wave, being an experimental form of music which attempts to defy the normal pattern of composition, melody and lyrical style, has no doubt in my opinion influenced such bands such as Sonic Youth and Ween. This unique style is expressed by two bands on this compilation. Teenage Jesus and the Jerks and Beirut Slump, with Teenage Jesus having a majority of the tracks on this album.

Lydia Koch, aka Lydia Lunch leads the band Teenage Jesus and the Jerks. Starting out as a teenage runaway from Rochester, NY and determined not to go back home, she founded the band at the age of 16. Lydia along with bassist Reck (originally from Japan who barely spoke English), saxophonist James Chance and drummer Bradley Field create a sound that is more punk in vocals, and no wave in melody. Flowing out all her teenage frustration in short sharp bursts, Lydia really gives you the feel of her experience on her own in Manhattan. I have to say Teenage Jesus is really the savior of this compilation, as Beirut Slump would otherwise not be able to handle it’s own.

Beirut Slump never really had a chance in it’s era, due to front man Bobby Swope a.k.a. Bobby Berkowitz. Getting the basis for his lyrics from the rantings of various homeless people wandering about the Bowery, ingredient one in the downfall of a band, that even with L.L. On guitar, can not hack it in that era’s current non-genre. It was simply too chaotic.

This a very good CD for fans of Lydia Lunch, but keep in mind folks, if you are not open to all forms of music, if you do not actually value the evolution of rock as it exists now and basically how the past influences the future, then seek another album.

You can get your own copy from MVD

Damon Harris

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