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Hepcat - Out Of Nowhere [re-issue] (Cover Artwork)

Hepcat

Hepcat: Out Of Nowhere [re-issue]Out Of Nowhere [re-issue] (2004)
Hellcat Records

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


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

It certainly says looks poorly on the 90s ska-punk movement that the entire revival only resulted in a small handful of bands that played the style consistently well and had a lifespan of more than two years. And while we can look back on the respectable back catalogues of The Pietasters, The Slacke.
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It certainly says looks poorly on the 90s ska-punk movement that the entire revival only resulted in a small handful of bands that played the style consistently well and had a lifespan of more than two years. And while we can look back on the respectable back catalogues of The Pietasters, The Slackers or the Bosstones, not many others managed to stick with the style; Certainly not to such a degree that these bands could dispute the fact that they were, in reality, just punk bands who dabbled in ska occasionally.

The scene revolving around New York City's Moon Records was, at least in my eyes, the great hope for respectability and artistic growth in the genre. Moon Ska bands, including label founders the Toasters (who had been soldiering on since the 80s), seemed divorced of the ironic humour and limited vision that plagued the mostly Californian acts then exploding into the mainstream. Moon bands tended to exhibit a very distinctive style, a connection with everything that was hip about the sound and fashion of both British 2-tone and it's Jamaican roots. With look back at Moon in its heyday it's not too hard to see a time when ska was legitimately underground and cool. It's all the more tragic then that with the demise of that label most of its catalogue is near difficult to find.

Looking back at Moon's roster, Hepcat stands out as one of the shining jewels of the 90s ska revival. While Out Of Nowhere was their earliest effort and their style became far more refined and distinctive as time went on, it still stands out as an accomplished revival of the genre's roots. The liner notes in this expanded reissue offer some insight into the band's goals and vision: "to form a band that would play the old-time Jamaican Ska and Rocksteady that was usually only played in between sets at a typical Ska show." Their story goes on to say that while they tried to absorb as much as they could from their influences, it wasn't until a `92 tour with The Skatalites that they became "apprentices to the masters" and the Hepcat sound was born.

That may be an idealised look back at the band's history, but with a single spin of Out Of Nowhere it's evident that they had captured the spirit they were seeking. Vocals by frontmen Greg Lee and Alex Desert gave Hepcat unmatched character as the band jammed over music penned by Deston Berry and future-Slacker Dave Hillyard. This reissue captures the original's 13 tracks (choice Duke Ellington cover "Caravan" included) as well as the band's first single "Nigel" (b/w "Club Meditation"). As expected Out Of Nowhere has aged incredibly well definitely deserves a place in your collection.

MP3: Earthquake and Fire

 

 
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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 (June 22, 2004)

great record from a great band! the only shit is, that I've never seen it live and they won't come to switzerland

Anonymous (April 26, 2004)

Yes Ken, I've mail ordered a record before. By "record" I mean a slab of vinyl.

In fact I'm so old-school awesome that I've had carrier pigeon deliver 8-tracks to my squat.

kenfuggit (April 26, 2004)

This little argument is quite funny to me. I'm wondering, have any of you ever mail ordered a record before? Yes I said "record" as in vinyl.

-Ken

Anonymous (April 26, 2004)

I know real punks, they don't rely on web sites for music. Pick up a zine go or to a record store.

Don't support Amazon, they don't support you. Now that's punk rawk!

Anonymous (April 26, 2004)

VERY GOOD

Sara(no h )

Anonymous (April 26, 2004)

"I was just using douche to have people recognize that I was the same poster from previously"

Then sign a name or log in. Duh.

Your Mother's Vagina
(that is my name.. see)

Anonymous (April 24, 2004)

I refuse to slander everyone and call them dirty names and I listen to Hepcat, so that makes me punker than everyone. Or would that be "ruder" than everyone? But a rude person is someone without manners. And a rude person would call someone a dirty name. So am I a ska-punk? Or a polite rudie?

Somebody please make fun of me so I'll know!

(The above is entirely composed of poorly written sarcasm, aimed at the below conversation about punks, Amazon, and douches.)

Anonymous (April 24, 2004)

"'everyone has browsed amazon" Really? Got any reference to site for that one?"

It's one of the highest rated websites now. I know punks, greasers, rudies, and emo boys who browse Amazon on a regular basis. Its pretty hard to believe that anyone who has the internet has not at least once visited Amazon, and, if they are into music, browsed their music section. Heck, i even saw a hobo browse it in a library once. Believe me, everyone has visited it. Plus, your comment is just being too nit-picky. You're just bitter cause I made a valid comment.

"Real punks don't say douche repeatedly. You should go to amazon and learn some new names to call people."

True, true. Real punks don't repeatedly say douche, the say asshole and fucker. Douche is a little out of their realm. Then again, I only know only one true punk, and he makes great arguments. All the others, are wannabes who don't know shit and just dress the dress to be different. They are like the Casualties, they are trying to damn hard.

Also, I was just using douche to have people recognize that I was the same poster from previously. Plus, it's a prety funny insult. I guess I could call them douche-face, Douchey Mcdoucherson, etc. There really are countless insults. I could even go olde english and call them common.

Anonymous (April 23, 2004)

"everyone has browsed amazon" Really? Got any reference to site for that one?

Anonymous (April 23, 2004)

Real punks don't say douche repeatedly. You should go to amazon and learn some new names to call people.

Anonymous (April 23, 2004)

"real punk don't use Amazon."

everyone has browsed amazon. if you haven't, then you are an elitist douche. you don't have to order music off of there (i know i dont), but where else is their great selection of books. plus, they have albums from bands i have never heard of, so i am learning. it is a valuable resource in finding new music. you can't learn everything from a punk zine.

Anonymous (April 23, 2004)

real punk don't use Amazon.

Anonymous (April 22, 2004)

"How does it make him closed minded? Maybe he never had the opportunity?"

Since Hepcat's been on Hellcat "for years" and he's been listening to punk "for years", then there is no way he hasn't at least heard of them. Hepcat are big in both ska and punk scenes. Both genres have a big history together. And if you have been listening to punk "for years" and have not listened to traditional ska (or anyother genre for that matter, then you are closed-mined douche. Just do a search for ska on Amazon (everyone has used amazon), and you will see that Hepcat are featured prominently on most of the lists (except for the crappy third wave ones).

Anonymous (April 22, 2004)

what's it matter if someone hasn't heard a fucking band when they get interested in this music, you can't hear all fucking bands instantly.

mikeinflames (April 22, 2004)

Hepcat rock my fucking socks
Do yourself a favour and go pick up this album

Anonymous (April 22, 2004)

I posted "Why do you review bands no one has ever heard of" In order to piss of and expose elitist idiots. It looks like it worked. I RULE.

Anonymous (April 22, 2004)

How does it make him closed minded? Maybe he never had the opportunity?

Anonymous (April 21, 2004)

"You should shoot yourself for not realising they were only joking. The 'kids these days....' thing is the most annoying thing i read on this site, stop being so elitist, I've listened to punk for years and never heard hepcat, does that make me a kid?"

no, it makes you a closed-minded douche.

Anonymous (April 21, 2004)

Awesome review adam. Man, i gotta get you back on my site...

Anonymous (April 21, 2004)

"If you haven't heard of Hepcat, you should shoot yourself. Kids these days..."

You should shoot yourself for not realising they were only joking. The 'kids these days....' thing is the most annoying thing i read on this site, stop being so elitist, I've listened to punk for years and never heard hepcat, does that make me a kid?

Jesse (April 21, 2004)

If you haven't heard of Hepcat, you should shoot yourself. Kids these days...

fakesmile (April 21, 2004)

"Why do you review bands no one has heard of?"

so you could learn that there are cool bands around that you never heard of?

man there should be a retard-filter on the internet.

Anonymous (April 21, 2004)

Man, PCU is a sweet movie.

Anonymous (April 21, 2004)

Why do you review bands no one has heard of?

Dud3 (April 21, 2004)

I love how "Earthquake and Fire" ends.

lieutenant (April 21, 2004)

(for the record, I realize Alex has no vocals on "Train To Skaville". OK.)

lieutenant (April 21, 2004)

This review really got me nostalgic to being a so-called [wannabe] rude boy back in high school when ska was all I needed to be happy. Hepcat do a really good fucking job at making me happy nowadays.

I must also comment that it was always so surreal to watch Alex Dessert as a blind coffee shop patron on CBS sitcom Becker. I was never a genuine fan of the show but I watched it everyweek for a while, just to see Alex and cry out, "This guy was part of 'Train to Skaville'?! Bizarre!"

Anonymous (April 21, 2004)

A reissue of the worst Hepcat album. Or maybe the last one that Alex only sang on two tracks was. I dunno. But "Scientific" and "Right On Time" are worlds better than this and I think the band would be the first to tell you that. They got markedly better with each year. its fine in its own context and historically significant, but just not that good.

and the new album art is shite.

--Cos
"it was all better in my day, when all the Steady Beat fuckers wouldn't dance to the ska-punk bands"

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

"It was shit when Alex quit the band and went on that crappy sitcom with Ted Danson. "

can't forget boy meets world with pinsky.

mikeshitter (April 20, 2004)

It was shit when Alex quit the band and went on that crappy sitcom with Ted Danson.

He was in Swingers and High Fidelity though.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

"I have the original version on Moon. 5 scene points for me."

was it brand new or used?

ElVaquero (April 20, 2004)

Absolutely excellent.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

easily one of the best 3rd wave ska acts of the 90s. right up there with the slackers, pietasters, toasters, mephiskapheles, etc (if not better)... great live show too.

i like the original moon artwork better though.

adam (April 20, 2004)

It is by Bob Marley & The Wailers but the original title is "Hooligan" (not plural).

HOOLIGAN:

"Violence had haunted the sound systems since their inception, although in their early days the damage was mostly inflicted on the equipment, not the participants of the dances. Yet put together a group of impassioned and partisan fans, and trouble was never far off. "We were no more strangers, we were more than friends, yet the bottles were splintered all over the place," is how The Wailers describe the recent riots sweeping the ska shows, "Mother been weeping, Father been preaching," and the rude boys were on the rampage."Hooligans, hooligans, make up your minds," the group demand."How you come off is always rude, breaking things and smashing rules, man what do you thing you are? A little beast for sure!"The Wailers were living on the same mean streets and poverty entrenched yards as these miscreants, and perhaps that's why they could get away with this sharp rebuke to their friends and acquaintances. "Hooligan" was one of the first numbers to directly address the growing rudie phenomenon and problem. It's theme was pure rocksteady, but as this single was cut in 1965, the music still waved the ska banner via its boisterousness pumping rhythm. Another Studio One classic that paved the way to rocksteady."

Wierdly Epitaph's site credits Heaton/Rotheray, which as far as a Google search shows are the songwriters from Britpop band The Beautiful South, who had a song called "Hooligans Don't Fall In Love" in 1994.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

bob marley did it

Travis (April 20, 2004)

i had no idea hooligans wasnt an original. thanks for the info. Id love to hear the original, or find out who did it, as I cant find any info on it.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

i bought this cd about 3 months ago. that completed the catologue for me. best Hepcat albbum. PERIOD.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

Scott...yeah Pops in Sauget. I was just curious, I remembered you were from Il, and thought you may be at the Bouncing souls show on wednesday. I just happened to be in the area for the show, and i was wondering how the venue is. -TahoeJeff

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

hepcat rocks. definitely worth the purchase.

Ramo

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

I was hoping this would be up here....... Absolutely brilliant work, a must have-oldpunker-

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

to the dude a few below, as much as i'm sure you love hepcat, they didn't write 'hooligans', I believe its a Wailers song, but I know its def. not originally a hepcat song. It does kick ass though.

sickboi (April 20, 2004)

Bob Saget? Huh?

maverick (April 20, 2004)

Pops in Sauget?

That's a bit too far away from me, I think. I'm up in the Quad Cities and Sauget/St. Louis is like what, 4-5 hours away?

-Scott

Travis (April 20, 2004)

god i fucking love hepcat. This was the first ska cd I ever bought, and they were the first live ska band I ever saw (opening up for the specials). "Hooligans" and "Dance Wid' Me" are two of the best songs hepcat ever wrote, and they were the songs that always got the biggest crowd reactions at shows.

i fucking love hepcat. I wish I could get the chance to see them live again, but it looks like I will never be in town when they are playing. Oh well.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

Scott...you ever go to shows at Pops?

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

I have the original version on moon also.......on CASETTE, yes the actual casette, i'm punker than all of you. or ruder than all of you.

oh yea, if you don't own this and like reggae/roots ska your missing alot. Def. hepcats best, and one of the best 90's ska albums period.

Anonymous (April 20, 2004)

So that puts you up to what, 5 scene points?

Josh

maverick (April 20, 2004)

I have the original version on Moon. 5 scene points for me.

-Scott

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