No slow burn for this Short Fuse
Short Fuse 3 - Various Artists (Wreckless Enterprises)
Fifteen songs from as many bands in 11 minutes. A punk rock barrage. Sounds like fun - and it is.
As you can tell from the name, this is the third in the series of concise and imperfectly formed, all-Australian compilation EPs from Wollongong label Wreckless Enterprises and it doesn’t pretend to be anything it isn’t in its headlong rush to the finish line: It’s a punk rock speed dating party and you wouldn’t want to be left on the shelf, would you?
Recorded in glorious lo-fi at various locations throughout Australia’s south-east, “Short Fuse” rans the stylistic gamut, from hardcore to garage punk and back again. You might know some of the bands or they might all be new to you, but there’s probably something here to catch your interest, albeit briefly.
Moot kick it off with a brief whiff of choral accompaniment before knuckling down to what they do best - which is Dead Kennedys inspired punk rock. “Antiseptik” is a fuck you to Christian rock bands by I Hate People and won’t get played on Hillsong’s TV cable TV channel any time soon.
One-woman, one-man Melbourne outfit Thee Cha Chas are easily the most tuneful inclusion while JP Geezer’s spoken word “Work For The Dole” would give John Cooper Clark a run for his social security money.
The Bot Bots reprise “Bored” from their “Stoneage Scomeos” record and its raw spontaneity stacks up well against the competition. Get Down Rosie’s political rant “Figurehead” is tight as a fish’s arse and Boudicca add a hardcore feminine touch with their tune. There’s not much information about Drowning Mermaids other than they’ve only played two gigs but “Lady Knight” is an appealingly rough and ready preview.
The Lenores are here to tell you “Stupid People Never Learn” and ain’t that the truth. Their garage-surf sound is a winner. The parts that make up Hoon’s “Trailer Trash” were recorded in isolation and then mixed down which sounds like a challenge but it’s one they met.