STREETPUNK '99

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STREETPUNK '99

It's that time of year again, the weekend for Oi! bands, those hard-rockin' champions of the working class, to descend on a local all-ages venue and engage in rollicking singalongs with a mix of local and travel-weary fans. For a quick primer, check out the recently released compilation Streetpunk '99, which was recorded in remarkably clear fashion at last year's inaugural event at Gee Coffee. Only a few of the groups featured on this release will be returning, including de facto host band Main Street Saints (whose members stomp convincingly through the boisterous tracks "The Bar" and "Sylvest"), Kelly's Heroes (whose "One More Beer" accurately captures the environment at one of Gee's few alcohol-available shows), and Sister Mary Rotten Crotch (which, though well represented with "1221" and "F.U.C.T.," has improved immeasurably since last year's event, thanks to a new lineup and the addition of some timely backup vocals). Among the rest, the U.K.-based Beerzone offers the most innovative compositions, filled with stops and starts and building momentum, and the band's self-deprecating tune "Viagra" is far from the boasting-tough-guy fare groups in this genre are sometimes accused of producing. Local fresh-faced punks Tanka Ray do the scene proud with the crisp, concise "Fist Fight," while New England's Patriot delivers the best of several offerings from its region with "R.S.V.P." R.S.V.P.s won't be necessary at this weekend's big punk party, but, because this year's proceedings won't be documented on CD, showing up in person is imperative.

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