General Rudie - Cooling The Mark (Cover Artwork)

General Rudie

General Rudie: Cooling The MarkCooling The Mark (2002)
Union Label Group

Reviewer Rating: 4

Contributed by: adamAdam
(others by this writer | submit your own)

I appreciate music more when I see its affect in a social setting. I recently took in two shows at the Trasheteria in Guelph, one with the Slackers and the other with The Planet Smashers. Prior to the headlining sets, the DJ had General Rudie's "Cooling The Mark" playing. If the amount of people dan.
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I appreciate music more when I see its affect in a social setting. I recently took in two shows at the Trasheteria in Guelph, one with the Slackers and the other with The Planet Smashers. Prior to the headlining sets, the DJ had General Rudie's "Cooling The Mark" playing. If the amount of people dancing to the background music was any indication, this record seems to have been receipted quite well.

General Rudie is a ska band that steers clear of any punk or metal indulgences. They have far more in common with the Slackers or Hepcat than they do any of the third wave acts that flirted with the mainstream in the late nineties. There's a very satisfying 2-tone feel to "Cooling The Mark" that I haven't heard from a newer band in some time.

There's a good mix of pop-based danceable tunes like the infectious "So Much" or "Mirella" alongside jazz based jams like "Sunday Drive." General Rudie has a lot in common with the Specials in that they're fairly straightforward with their ska sound; they're not as dense with R&B influences as the Slackers nor are they as steeped in motown-worship as the Pietasters. Phil Dixon was born to do lead vocals in a band like this. He shows just the right amount of swagger and attitude to pull it off, closer in style to Vic Ruggiero than King Django or someone with more a more Jamaican style.

There's something sparse and clean about the band's sound. Stomp could have billed this band as "distilled-ska" because, despite some well-placed jazz flourishes, General Rudie stay close to the roots of the genre. Even though tracks like "The Gig Is Up" could have come from Toots and the Maytals the band never seems dated.

With the lack of interest in ska music in general it's great to see a new band with no ambitions for "crossover success" or pressure to cater to anyone but admitted fans of the style. Those of you who dig the Slackers, Skatalites or the Stubborn Allstars need to pick this up.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (December 8, 2002)

No i will not fuck you. Lol. I gotta go buy my nfg album. Be back in a jiffy.

Anonymous (December 6, 2002)

Fuck you-oldpunker-

Anonymous (December 5, 2002)

When will you fucking losers realize ska has and always will suck!!!

GnarlyDude (December 4, 2002)

Being a Montrealler who has seen this band many times, It makes me really happy to read such a great review. The band really rocks live, and sounds great recorded as well. Every time I see them they just keep getting better and better......
I remember 2 years ago whent they had a linup that didn't include a guitar... interesting how they've changed, but its for the better for sure.

Anonymous (December 4, 2002)

Killer review, being a huge slackers fan as well as hepcat,i will pick this up-oldpunker-

Anonymous (December 4, 2002)

Great review.

Anonymous (December 4, 2002)

great fucken reveiw! great band! montreal trad ska at its finest...
-rylan from rcr

WussEmoRock (December 4, 2002)

Thanks Adam!


GregSka (December 4, 2002)

I saw these guys open for Mustard Plug once, they were so fricken good to see live. The only regret I have was not dancing for them, a mistake I'm sure I'll never repeat

Anonymous (December 3, 2002)

I saw these guys live a few months ago and they were slright. I couldn't get into their set because the palce was empty and they started around 11:00. Not bad though

adam (December 3, 2002)


The Union is the amalgamation of ska label "Stomp Records", punk/indie label "Union 2112" and street punk label "Mayday!" The labels all retain their individual identities. Kind of like Epitaph/Hellcat/Anti...

travis (December 3, 2002)

ok. you won me over with the comparison to hepcat and the slackers. i will buy this now.

Anonymous (December 3, 2002)

mmm... jazz.

WussEmoRock (December 3, 2002)

someone explain to me why every Union Label release has a different label name for it. And then Union Label is in parentheses.


CallingLondon (December 3, 2002)

wow. as soon as i saw the name of the band i knew it was a ska band. clash reference? sounds like a good band to check out.

chimericalburst (December 3, 2002)

honestly, this band just plain rocks. all of you fairweather, fly-by-night trendies that stared at ska while it was the shiny object on the shelf and later averted your eyes to the slightly shinier visage of shitty emo musick can suck it.


p.s. for purposes of journalistic integrity, i'm friends with the keyboard player, cos he was in some of my classes.

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