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Screeching Weasel - Kill the Musicians [reissue] (Cover Artwork)

Screeching Weasel

Screeching Weasel: Kill the Musicians [reissue]Kill the Musicians [reissue] (2005)
Asian Man Records

Reviewer Rating: 2.5
User Rating:


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

Here's the last of the Asian Man Screeching Weasel reissues. I have to say these last two reissues (...Enemies and KTMM) have been pretty...(ahem) lackluster...efforts. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any rarities/B-side compilations that are recommendable to anyone but the most hardcore.
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Here's the last of the Asian Man Screeching Weasel reissues. I have to say these last two reissues (...Enemies and KTMM) have been pretty...(ahem) lackluster...efforts.

Off the top of my head, I can't think of any rarities/B-side compilations that are recommendable to anyone but the most hardcore fans, and this one isn't much different. Being one of those hardcore fans of Weasel, of course I own or have owned most of the original pressings and was pleased to get the CD when it was released in 1995. There are a few great tracks on here; I prefer the version of "Hey Suburbia" included here to the Boogadax3 version, for example, and "Radio Blast," "Around on You," and "Mary Was an Anarchist" are worth a listen, as are the live-from-Gilman tracks "Veronica Hates Me," "I Can See Clearly Now," "Supermarket Fantasy," and "Science of Myth."

If you have all the other pre-Emo albums and can't get enough of the band, I'd suggest picking this up next. Only the most hardcore of hardcore fans probably need the second collection, the 2xCD Thank You Very Little (the 2nd disc does feature a nice live set from 1993, originally bootlegged and released as Punk Rock Superheros). That boot wasn't as cool as the There's a Screaming Otter in My Pants bootleg, though, which captured a great show of the band at their peak.

The KTM reissue cover art and titles do look sharper and I do prefer the new CD "art." The arguably termed "brand new" artwork consists of a few new color photos along with some of the original photos now in color. The original CD artwork and a couple old photos included in Ben's original liner notes (one was of All Night Garage Sale, Ben and Jughead's pre-Weasel band) are no longer included.

As these tracks were already remastered in 1995, sound quality is not so much a concern when deciding whether to buy this version or track down the out-of-print Lookout! CD, which really shouldn't be too hard if you apply yourself.

Ben's in-depth History of Screeching Weasel essay has been replaced with a rather uninspiring lecture on how the bad old days aren't really worth commenting on. Short notes from Matt Skiba (Alkaline Trio) and Matt Smith (Strike Anywhere) are also included, as well as a lenghty, sentimental essay from Mass Giorgini who eulogizes his late, cancer-stricken father in the context of his working relationship with Screeching Weasel over the years. While this is a nice essay with some interesting tidbits (the story about Ben's original vocals for "Kathy's on the Roof" was amusing -- think about it: "Kathy's on the roofagin"), it's not especially informative and not nearly as interesting as Ben's original liner notes, which Ben derides as "voluminous, rambling, and nonsensical." In fact, Mass's liner notes would have made much more sense had they been included in the barren Enemies reissue packaging.

Now I don't know about you, but I'd kinda like the guy putting out the records to know what he's talking about, so when Mike Park (Asian Man)'s liner notes talk about how much he loves rarities collections and how this collects a lot of great stuff, blah blah, and how it would be nice to "have the original CDs in your collection, but that's what eBay is for," it irks my fact-checker that none of the KTM tracks appeared on CD before the original release of KTM (as far as I know the tracks that were released were on various 7" releases and 10" or 12" vinyl compilations). Sure, it's obvious he meant the original vinyl pressings, but, c'mon. Is a little attention to detail too much to ask?

Perhaps most unforgiving however, is the lack of a list of which tracks came from which releases. Originally that information could at least be gleaned from the liner notes (or, from the discography that was included in the original pressing of ...Enemies -- also deleted from the reissue packaging). The recently relaunched www.screechingweasel.comhas an incomplete discography at the moment.

Some armchair QB'ing suggestions on what might have made this a more intersting reissue package (I'm just spitballing here):

Maybe original cover art from all the EPs and compilations would have made some nice, "brand new artwork" for the packaging.

The 4 songs from the Weasel Ramones cover LP now seem superflous now that the whole LP has been released on CD, and it would have been okay with me if they had deleted those 4 tracks to make room to include some other songs (maybe even the Formula 27 bonus tracks off the Ramones CD, even though they're not from the era represented on this collection). Perhaps "My Friends Are Getting Famous" or "Disgusteen," or the 7" EP tracks left off originally because as Ben said in the original liner notes: "They blow."

"My Friends Are Getting Famous" is off 1994's Punk USA compilation, compiled by Ben, which featured exclusive-at-the-time tracks from Screeching Weasel, Jawbreaker, Face to Face, the Queers, the Vindictives, Rattail Grenaider (Mass Giorgini's pre-Squirtgun band; basically Squirtgun with a different singer), and more.

"Disgusteen" was the title song to a really bad, super low-budget gay-vampire flick Ben wrote and directed that I'm sure he would love to forget ever happened (not sure how he feels about his appearance in Bruce LaBruce's gay porn film, "Super 8 1/2"). Ben recorded "Disgusteen" with Chicago's 8-Bark as his backing band. So, it's not Screeching Weasel, true, but from what I remember of the nth-generation VHS copy I used to have, the soundtrack wasn't terrible. Including the 7" version of "I Wanna Be a Homosexual" with Bruce LaBruce's intro would've been good, too.

Another possible inclusion of an out-of-print Weasel-related project was the Shotdowns, who released a 7" on Lookout Records. Ben did some A&R work for Lookout! and "found" them an old-school hardcore act from Maine. Lookout! bit on it and put out the 7". Turned out later it was actually Ben, Jughead, and Jersey Beat's Jim Testa.

Wouldn't have been good for Weasel purists maybe, but would've been some nice added value.

Original Release: 8/10
Reissue: 5/10

 

 
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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 (April 5, 2006)

don't forget about hwm's "never ender" when mentioning awesome b-sides/rarities comps.

Anonymous (April 3, 2006)

"Off the top of my head, I can't think of any rarities/B-side compilations that are recommendable to anyone but the most hardcore fans"

Nirvana -- Insesticide
Misfits -- Legacy of Brutality
Bikini Kill--The Singles
Discount--Singles #1/#2
Pixies--Complete B-Sides
SOIA--Outtakes for the Outcast

Although, I'm not sure that comment was a disparagement on b-sides collections so much as a comment on how they're probably not the first CD you'd recommend to someone getting into a band.

In fact, my wife is a special ed teacher, and, judging by overall reading comprehension levels of comments...if most of the kids who comment on this site aren't in their high school's special ed program, they probably should be.

lushj (April 2, 2006)

It sounds like it's a decent re-issue package for non-Screeching Weasel obsessives (even though there's a lot of you out there!). It's still MUSICALLY a great collection of SW tunes, so I think it's worth rating higher than a 5 for the re-issue. Get it and hand it to a future SW fan and let them obsess about the liner notes from the first pressing later on after they've gotten Boogadax3, Wiggle, and My Brain Hurts.

P.S.- In comparison, Thank You Very Little pales greatly to the stuff on this.

SlackMFr (April 2, 2006)

This reviewer is a fucking retard! B-side, rareites and etc. are usually great !!! I hate this reviewer, fuck you ! You're a flesh twinkie! Greatest Hits & Best of collections are what fucking blow, well those collections and YOU!

southpawnation (April 1, 2006)

Yep, I f'ed up on that Punk Rock Superheroes bootleg comment. I don't know why I was thinking that was what was on TYVL. You can see the PRS tracklist here

pabstboy (April 1, 2006)

"Off the top of my head, I can't think of any rarities/B-side compilations that are recommendable to anyone but the most hardcore fans

Dillinger Four---This Shit is Genious

burningfeeetman (April 1, 2006)

"Off the top of my head, I can't think of any rarities/B-side compilations that are recommendable to anyone but the most hardcore fans"

Alkaline Trio's self-titled is probably their best cd. Goddamn it is so good!

Anonymous (April 1, 2006)

this shit is goooooooooooood. the live songs rock ass. i wanna be a homosexual...holy shitballs that song is crazy good. SW is the best "pop punk" band ever. no joke.

SuperRad (March 31, 2006)

I love this cd.

MedioCore (March 31, 2006)

"Off the top of my head, I can't think of any rarities/B-side compilations that are recommendable to anyone but the most hardcore fans"

The Lawrence Arms - "Cocktails & Dreams"

cantsitstill (March 31, 2006)

I don't understand the low score. You give the original an 8, while the reissue gets half of that. I could see demoting the reissue if the sound quality was worse, but you're supposed to be judging the music, so if the music's the same, should it not get the same score as the original? I mean, you could say "the original version already kicks ass, but a reissue wasn't really needed".

Anonymous (March 31, 2006)

When are you guys gonna finally block the "On the Road With the Ramones" IP?

It seems like every time there's a Ramones-related news item, a Ramones review, or a band that sounds like the Ramones, that same thing pops up and it's fucking tired.

You know it's just the same loser doing it over and over. Block him.

-Will

nikko (March 31, 2006)

i guess i understand rating the re issiue so low but come on this is a good cd

Anonymous (March 31, 2006)

The set on Punk Rock Superheroes is different from the Thank You Very Little Set. Punk Rock Superheroes is a radio show. I think some of it was Happy Horny Gay and Sassy and Pervo Devo

Anonymous (March 31, 2006)

luckily i found the original version in the used rack at my local record store. zing

darkstarm (March 31, 2006)

ATTENTION ALL MORONS: This is not a review of the album. This is a review of the re-issue and the materials within. If you were too actually read the review you would see he gives the actual album an 8. Please shut up.

Anonymous (March 31, 2006)

For the best book on the Ramones read,
"On The Road With The Ramones"
http://www.ontheroadwiththeramones.com

This is a MUST-HAVE book for all Ramones fans. It's an inside look from the people who were actually there witnessing and experiencing all the extreme highs and lows of one of rock's greatest bands. The Ramones' music has influenced nearly every power pop, punk, alternative, and metal band. Monte A. Melnick served as The Ramones tour manager from their early New York club days at CBGB's in the '70s to their farewell gigs in 1996. Filled with memorabilia including photographs and interviews collected along the way, this is his view of life on the road with the band as "baby-sitter to psychiatrist, booking agent to travel agent, paymaster to van driver." It's such a fascinating read, you'll have a hard time putting it down. Buy it, read it, and then revisit their albums. You'll never look at the Ramones in the same light.

Anonymous (March 31, 2006)

Your review sucks. This is an above "great" album. Listening to these songs make me realize exactly who and what screeching weasel represented as a band. I seriously think you should think about re-editing your score, or at least ask that this crap review be pulled so someone who can actually give this album the score it deserves can submit one.

gregs (March 31, 2006)

Even though it's compiled from other releases, the first 14 songs on this CD make for a great album. Right up there with My Brain Hurts.

The Girl Next Door is the epitome of a pop punk song to me. Probably my favorite ever

almostpunkenough (March 31, 2006)

derp, i missed that original score at the bottom.

almostpunkenough (March 31, 2006)

wow, i'm suprised the score is so low. i think this a damn good cd, it's stayed strong over the years.

OzmanX (March 31, 2006)

Who would have thought that a song with the title "I Wanna Be a Homosexual" would be so fucking good.

Anonymous (March 31, 2006)

Yeah!

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