Rat Damage "Cursed" CD


I am writing this while suffering from a monster hangover and extreme sleep deprivation, after all, I was out late cursing my liver and ears with these assholes. First a few words about the rock n roll criminals that brought us this slab of rotten wax. This rager has been a long time coming! Over the years, Rat Damage has become a staple of the Sacramento, California underground punk scene and has released a couple very limited seven inch vinyl records. The vocalist and bassist run a DIY style record label together called FYBS and have not so coincidentally released this album on vinyl. The singer is also a "scene veteran" (a polite way of saying "geezer"..haha, sorry Ken!) who has been bringing the best underground touring punk bands to Sacramento and the surrounding area for what seems like almost twenty years (if I can remember that far back, I guess that makes me a "geezer", too). And if thats not enough, the lead guitarist is always active in at least two or three other bands to boot. Did I mention they perform live about three or four times per month? Whew! These guys are fucking busy!

Now onto the insults: CURSED, their debut full length album, was recored at Lennon Studios in San Francisco by Jeff (Leppard) Davis at the end of 2011. It has a super beefy and slick sound that is not over produced and still delivers a raw, gut-wrenching punch. 11 lamentations filled with regret, desperation, hate, misery and impending doom of the soul. These songs document the day to day struggles that these veteran Sacto lifers experience in Californias Capitol City. Its like sneaking a peak at a mad mans diary (Ozzy reference?). The refreshingly simplistic lyrical approach is most often delivered in a chanting style, a single sentence repeated over and over, drilling the subject matter straight to your brain matter. The vocal style is belted out in hoarse yells of melancholy and bring up familiar sore subjects that plague most of us at one time or another, no matter where you live. This makes the band highly palatable and easy to relate with. Having a bad day? Listen to the vocalist scream his guts out about the same shit thats beating up your brain but magnified ten fold and you will be thinking, well, I guess it could be worse...I could be this guy! A myriad of influences rampage throughout, but it's difficult to pin-point who, as in which particular bands, they are drawing their inspiration. Rat Damage have an original sound, which is rare these days. Most of the time, the drums are assaulted with an up-tempo/mid pace as the guitars chug along in an old-school heavy metal style tinged with "the blues" while still capturing the spirit of classic "old tyme" California 80's punk and hardcore bands. Theres even some 70s British punk riffing invading the mix at times. Some songs start out with stoner/bluesy intros and then gallop forward with a tight, dare I say danceable groove. Others just smack you upside the dome from the get go. The only real exception is when the album's title track, CURSED gets rudely interrupted by a completely different song called PILLS that usurps with a full on D-Beat attack

Some other things about this release that you may find interesting: The cover artwork was created by Pat Kim, ex-member of the band Unwritten Law and features some cool, collage-style art by Jeremiah (Jed) Pfeffer on the inside. SLOW SUICIDE, the album's final track, features some agonizing backing vocals by VOETSEKs Ami Lawless.

Recommended for fans of Poison Idea, Motorhead, Black Flag, DRI, Verbal Abuse, Attitude Adjustment, Venom, Circle Jerks along with creeps and scum bags from all walks of life. Tired of cookie cutter punk bands? Get this album!

First pressing of 100 professionally packaged, duplicated CDs. Shrink-wrapped in a standard size jewel case.

:: R E V I E W S ::

"Sacramentos Rat Damage sound like Poison Idea, Motorhead, and Verbal Abuse getting in a vicious bar fight, going for the nads, breaking beer bottles over each others faces. Its abrasive hardcore vitriol with the refined musical muscle of metal. If youve ever wondered how punk can sound so violent while espousing pacifism, this record will clear up such questions very quickly. Searing twin-guitar attack with minimal lead playing, Geezer Butler on uppers bass playing, crisp and pummeling drums, whiskey-soaked vocals-PUNK AS FUCK! Aptly enough, EVERY SINGLE TRACK HAS F-BOMBS (SAFE HARBOR ONLY), but all are awesome. A1: Fleshripping rock n roll anti-religion polemic, midpaced and relentless, you found jesus / I found drugs. A2: Vicious headbanging assault, like something Venom would put on their workout playlist. A3: Like later-era Verbal Abuse or Attitude Adjustment but more focused, raw powerchord assault of some midpaced metalpunk madness. A4: Far more chaotic; vicious hard-rock motifs swirling in a blackened pit of nihilism and despair. A5: Dark chugging rager, piss-raw and straight to the point. A6: Even more catchy Venom vibes on this one, sick ass riffs. B1: Sick-nasty bass licks, simple one-two-fuck-you riffs at a schizophrenic pace. B2: Fastest track, balls-out punk rock aggression, gets your fist in the air and ass in the pit much like the Circle Jerks at their best. B3: Dark rock n roll dirge, some hints of Japanese punk in the sound. B4: Totally fucking negative, relentless pummeling despair-every day I hate myself-gets hardrockish before blasting into a high-velocity punk whirlwind of destruction. B5: Catchy, dare I say melodic? Riffs, heavy DRI / Motorhead influence here, longest track and totally raging." - KZSU FM 90.1 Stanford University, California

"After a couple of small vinyl outings, heres the debut full-length from Californias Rat Damage. They have progressed a long way since their skate-core beginnings. On this record, they add a second guitarist whos great at pounding out killer, rocked-out leads that contrast well with the bands simple and brutal hardcore attack. The result reminds me a little bit of later Black Flag, but not exactly (this isn't one of those bands that shamelessly tries to imitate Ginns guitar style). Its more like they are interested in the simplicity of punk, the heaviness of metal and the catchiness of rock music. It's a really original combination that doesn't really sound like anything else out there, but its still engaging and powerful." - Sorry State Records

"The new Rat Damage LP totally captures the boogie punk rock toxic gene splicing of the Yahmos and Thin Lizzy that they have become and is filled with so much bile and swingin swagger that I ended up lighting my boxers on fire just from the friction of shaking my hips to Witchdokkkkkkkkkktor!!! Get it. I mean it! Its one of Sacramentos finest vinyl slabs." - Sacramento Punk Shows Blog

Excellent Video Review by Mangled Media of the 3rd Kind/JGCSound
:: CLICK HERE :: or paste the following address into your browser: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gM9mk87tvg&feature=plcp

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