Reviews of “Monkeys Throw Shit”

Whew! I can finally stop holding my breath. Visitor 42 rocks! Combining the best elements of early eighties punk with a classic rock twist, they have created one of the best and most listenable albums I’ve heard in years. Their sound is as unique and solid as any of the early punk bands, such as The Vibrators, The Ramones, Black Flag, and Fear (whom they do a great cover of on this album). Their musicianship and song writing talent is the equal of any of the classic rock greats. If the Beatles where still going today they could only wish to make a recording this great. This CD is definitely one of my favorites, give it a listen and you’ll be breathing some fresh air, too. -Erik Core, musician

Oakland, Calif. Has Visitor 42 gone pop? That’s what avid punk listeners everywhere are asking themselves with the veteran Oakland outfit’s new release of “Monkeys Throw ****” (Butt Flower Records). The group’s latest offering conjures up audial images of punk/pop progenitors such as The Ramones and Reducers, as well as adding to its already strong base of Black Flag and Rollins Band influence.

From the opening ripping of “Stranglehold,” not to be confused with the Ted Nugent song by the same name, to the tip of the hat to Connecticut’s Reducers in “Let’s Go,” Visitor 42 flexes its riffing muscle. The Visitor is a cohesive unit of punk power, formed around the creative core of Dan Sauter’s six-string angst. Dan Johnson provides the (loco) motive force for the tunes, pounding the big thick round things and the shiny thin round things (must speaker drummer language so they can understand) with precision
and power. Curt Knudsen provides the melodic underpinnings on bass, while adding no small amount of sex appeal. Tim Warder rounds out the sound with more ripping, razor guitars.

This latest offering leaves only one question — what would McCartney think of their rendition of “Eleanor Rigby?” – Rokk Kritik, indie reviewer

- Reviews of “Heavy Handed Hospitality”

Quirky, random and insane: just a few words to describe this semi-pop-punk band from Alameda, California.  They’ve got a sound that is reminiscent of the New York Dolls having lunch with Mudhoney and the Velvet Underground.  I have not heard a band this intense in awhile.  All of the members share the vocals on this disc, and for the most part, that works well.  The highlight of Heavy Handed Hospitality is a riveting cover of The Rolling Stones “Paint it Black” as well as the tracks “United Police States,” “The Prey,” and the opening song, “Man of Steel.”  The song “Cactus” reminds me so much of Mudhoney that it almost makes me smile.  It’s nice to know that there are a few bands here in the Bay Area that don’t sound so mundane and similar. – Josh Joesten, Zero Magazine

This is a great CD of relatively unheard punk rock, but it also combines other influences (most notably classic rock, psychedelia, & grunge) into the mix, creating a unique and invigorating sound. Definitely recommended, especially the poppy punk anthem “Everything,” the trippy, psychedlic “Cactus,” and the sludgy guitar rock of “Red Room.” – DVD Auctioneer, Amazon.Com

Visitor 42- This highly acclaimed band hailing from the East Bay has been compared to a cross between Black Flag and Hank Williams so one can imagine the musical versatility this band has. They have toured up and down the West coast playing with bands such as Poison Idea, The Donna’s and The Dwarves. Their new CD “Heavy Handed Hospitality” is garnering the band rave reviews. Their song “Everything” on the “HEAR This” CD is dedicated to better world for us to all live in. – Kathy Peck, H.E.A.R. Founder

This is a hard review for me; Visitor 42…sound like something between punk & rock, but it isn’t punk rock. In this CD there are some songs that sound strongly like punk like “Pachebell’s Canyon Indeed”, “Man of Steel”, & “Everything” that reminds me of “Buzzcocks” and “Undertones”, and some other pop punk stuff, and other fast and raw like “Dichotomy” but there are also some simple and minimal rock songs (they do also Rolling Stones’ ‘Paint it Black’). The result is a record that I don’t like at all… but at the same time make[s] me curious, I want to hear more! – Paolo Retardo, ParcoDio

Coast Guard rockers serve up a dose of greasy spoon diner music…that stands out and kicks ass. Would you expect any different? – Neil Smith, 100 Punks Zine

- Reviews of “Gnaw On It”

 

“This CD was a nice surprise. Really well written indie rock songs with interesting parts and good lyrics. ‘Sometimes’ has a driving beat while ‘State of Being’ had some cool guitar solos with vocals that brought to mind D. Boon. There is something worth hearing in all the songs on this disc which isn’t bad these days.” – Mike Millett, MaximumRockNRoll  (October 1997)

“So I walk into this hotel, and I am greeted by a cherubic young lad. ‘Thank you for choosing the Hotel V42,’ he chimes, ‘We hope you enjoy your stay.  Would you be as so kind as to sign our guest registry?’  He hands me the book, bound in expensive leather, but soild with greasy fingerprints and potato chip crumbs.  Cautiously, I open it up, find records of previous guests such as:  Hank Rollins * Greg Ginn * Bill Stevenson * Dale Nixon * Christian Slater * Kira * Henry Rollins * Robo * Dez Cadenza * The Phoenix Family * Charles Dukowski * Charles Bukowski * Chavo Pederast * H. Rollins.

Realizing that I’m not hearty enough to endure this place’s heavy-handed hospitality, I put the book down and leave, but not without a handful of mints and the Hotel’s card.  That way, when the cherubic young bellboys attain enough status to sign their own names in the registry, I’ll have proof enough to claim ‘I was there when…'” – Wendell Scott, Bay Area Music (BAM) Magazine.

“Costello, Ramones, Devo, Devon, Talking Heads, Smithereens, Marine Corps Chants, it’s all in there, and then some!! I hate to name other bands as examples of style when in fact, the above may not even be near influences of Visitor 42, but hey, it’s what I’m hearing!

Cuts like the grinding “Sometimes” or the slow moods of “State of being” take you from one end of a punks spectrum to another rock point of view and sum up the CD, However “Drummers Day” (Live) has got to be the KING of this album. It has a way of gnawing on your musical funny bone. The first time I heard it I had to shut it off…But after another exposure the sickness began to sink in. I now have listened to it about 12 times and it just keeps getting better!! The drums are recklessly savage.The guitars driving, and the vocals…. seem to be a type of Controlled Kaos. The type rarely experienced unless you ever seen a motorcyclist weaving back and forth across 880 with a yellow jacket trapped in his helmet!

Conclusion: Although in spots the CD lacked in sonic quality (the studio), the band shines and the message is well delivered.  Sonic quality…Punk…. Is that an Oxymoron? Go check these guys out in a club near ya, they got somethin’ to say!” – Bayscene On-Line Magazine, www.bayscene.com

“V42 are one of my favorite SF Bay Area punk bands. Their unique sound is always interesting, as shown on this CD from beginning to end. I like everything they play, even the cheesy version of ‘Your Cheatin’ Heart.’ It’s all good stuff here, no pop or tired three-chord cliches. The scratchiness of the vocals and the sharp stabs of the guitars soothe my inner being. – L.”, Bast Magazine