Based out of Oslo, Norway COMPOST MODERN ART RECORDINGS are a couple of volumes into their killer STUFFS comps that bring together a bunch of American punk bands and a bunch of European punk bands. Punk is defined very loosely here, from track to track encompassing garage rock, power pop, strange hardcore, garage pop, and even some other stuff that I guess is indie rock or something. Anyway, the point is this label is bringing together a lot of music that emanates from the underground and doing away with the strict aesthetic adherence that often separates them, but doesn’t really exist for the most part (as far as I’m concerned). Anyway, I really love these comps for this reason, and because they are full of amazing bands from all over the map. STUFFS VOL. 2 is the latest in the series. And though at least some of the tunes found on it are previously released (I haven’t done my research but I know that at least the DAN MELCHIOR track is one that I’ve heard before on one of his many releases), the comp taken as a whole is still incredibly fresh any way you slice it. Fresh still even though this vinyl comp was released back in early 2013.
Anyway, you probably know some of the bands, bands that we’ve loved over and over and still want to love some more: DAN MELCHIOR, NASA SPACE UNIVERSE, SOUPCANS, ACID BABY JESUS. Alongside them there were a bunch of discoveries on here for me. PIERRE & BASTIEN’s track “Stress & Paillettes” shows the Paris band crushing punk rock and garage rock into one blasting force with a great sci-fi guitar riff that keeps coming back into my head at quiet moments much like the tinnitus that listening to bands like this enough (too late for me) will cause. The pan-European OFFONOFF weigh in with a noise rock bastard of a track of improvised mayhem called “MIHA!”, courtesy of the trio that includes a member of THE EX, and players who have collaborated with the likes of PETER BROTZMANN and JOHN BUTCHER. France’s LES CHOEURS DE LA MER NOIRE (featuring members of CHEVEU) offer up “Dryer”, an odd and noisy synth punk approach that actually may be my favorite song on the whole comp. Creepy slightly psychedelic cheap synth-punk-pop with just that correct amount of noise.
In case it’s not clear to you, this comp is pretty amazing. You might know the American bands, maybe you even know most of the bands, but for most this will be a far reaching primer for underground sounds of the USofA and Europe right now. A primer that leans heavy on scuzzy sounds, but goes well beyond just that. COMPOST MODERN ART RECORDINGS is killing it with this series of comps. Hopefully there will be a third. The label has also released records by CRASH NORMAL (included on this comp as well). Give them a look.