Bitter Amercian Live and Loud

The Cricket Cemetery family runs red with thick blood. Label mates, Bitter American, a true testament to the hardcore punk rock of the 80’s, tore the seams from the carpet as they destroyed a set to pieces at American University this last Friday.

Honest, and angry, and certainly not kids, friendships and working relations be-damned, I’m honestly a die hard fan of this group.

Incidentally, their first release, “21” just dropped on the Cemetery. All promotional hype aside, it’s well worth picking up: HERE


Fotis Patikas from Take your shot was nice enough to sit down and type out how he feels about the new LTW 7 inch – TOTAL GARBAGE. Take your shot has been doing obnoxiously excellent reviews of hardcore and metal since 2004. We love Greece. Chirp Chirp.
Record Review: LTW “Total Garbage” 7″
Cricket Cemetery is a US label that specializes in discordant, scorching hardcore punk that is definitely a step ahead of today’s standards. The label is releasing one crucial 7″ after the other, attacking the world with beautifully incomprehensible hardcore noise that goes unmatched in the current HC/punk (and even metal) scenes. This is our first Cricket Cemetery review, for the band LTW.

The phantom HC outfit which goes under the name of LTW is a perfect example of the label’s dilapidated take on hardcore, as their Total Garbage 7″ brings the noise like it aint no thing. LTW deliver three relentless hardcore blasts of rabid drumming, loud as fuck basslines, demented barked vocals and a production sound that is dirtier than CBGB’s toilet.

What is really going on here is a demolition and reorganization of hardcore’s bare essentials: short punk riifs, explosive layers of distortion and crazy breakneck rhythms. This ultra-sped Black Flag bastard of a son is combined with tons of feedback, well placed psychedelic breaks and some silent parts that indeed leave you wandering “what the fuck?” For sure, this would go down better with fans of powerviolence, fastcore, grind etc compared to the typical hardcore fan.

I guess Cricket Cemetary reinvents the hardcore of a new generation and, quite possibly, this is what the hipsters will soon be listening to (hopefully not). In either case, my ears hurt!
The LTW – TOTAL GARBAGE 7 INCH will be out early November on cricket cemetery. Limited to 150 copies with hand screened covers. LTW plays at the red palace October 26 in DC with Beasts of no nation & the mostly dead. Check that shit out, it’s going to be a rager.

2011 CC Halloween Shirt


Halloween is by far my favorite holiday.  This has been a real big year for the label (the only year, but that’s ok).  I wanted to celebrate this evil, tooth decaying holiday and rep my hood a little at the same time. 

Ringspun cotton-limited to 32 pieces-sizes youth large through extra large.

These damned garments will be in my hands October 7 th.  Get in touch. 

Ian over and out.


DC pours the shit out of Philly

Latte art.

Latte art is one of the things that differentiates specialty or “third wave” coffee from other coffee and coffee shops.  I covered the May TNT (Thursday Night Throwdown) which was held at BIG BEAR CAFE. Art was poured free hand. Brains became dizzy from beer and cocktails.  Floors were danced upon (see one, Mr. Pat Henning). Hometown pride isn’t enough anymore.  Which is the exact reason why Josh from Chinatown Coffee took it upon himself to  go to Philedelphia last thursday for their Thursday Night Throwdown, held at Town Hall Coffee.  To try his portafiltering hand at battle!!  We’ll get to the winner in a minute…

So, I’m at work a couple weeks ago and I was visited by none other than Christy Baugh, Jewdith Mandel and Brian Duggan. They never need a reason to show their beautiful faces in my shop but Christy was holding a video camera in her hand so naturally I asked her what she was up to.  She told me that her and her coffee associates were going around making a video for Philly.  “What about Philly and why?” I asked.  They said there was a latte art competition going down between Philly and DC … how exciting!  “Then what’s the video for…. ” I asked. To which Christy explained “It’s going to be a video of people from DC talking smack on Philly”

So let me get this straight Christy Baugh .. you want to record me, talking a bunch of shit on Philadelphia.

The city of “Brotherly Love”?  The home of the famous “Philly Cheesesteak”? The city where great sports teams like The Phillies, Eagles and Flyers reside? Um, yeah let’s fucking do this!

A week passes.

I’m at work and Alex Bean hands me a disc.  This disc has the following video on it.

Moments after watching it Josh Croston walks through the door. He saw what we were watching and went,”oh yeah I won that; it was great” He told me that he took the bus up the day of the competition, showed them the video, competed, had a great time, saw some friends and then came back. To which I replied, “So let me get this straight, you took a $17 bus to Philly, signed up for a latte competition, showed a room full of Philly baristas a video .. of me and fellow DC baristas and residents explaining what a TERRIBLE place Philidelphia is … you then won the latte art competition, got on a bus and came back home?”. HAHAH amazing.  Eat it Philly.

See you October 20th at Big Bear for the DCxPhilly TNT.  Y’all gonna be bleeding cheez whiz.

Ian M W Thompson

The Bam Bams: Live Video from the Black Cat

As you may or may not know, the District of Columbia was fortunate enough, several weeks ago, to host America’s queens of bubblegum, The Bam Bams, on the Black Cat mainstage. Star crossed between Baltimore and Chicago, this hasn’t stopped the dynamic duo from churning out track after track of grade A maple syrupy pop jamz to break your candy heart.

My words do little justice to the phenomenon that is The Bam Bams, so let’s cut to the tape. Hide your heart, it’s about to get crushed:

If you’ve already pledged your allegiance to the bubble gum army, remember that TV never lies. As the videos said, you can grab that first 7″ from Cricket Cemetery right now: SO DO IT!

Now that you’re head over, I’d suggest you sit and spinnnnnn…..

The Wierd Affairs of No Love Lost

So, nature be damned, last week saw Sean Gray and I returning to the epic spires of New York to spin, as No Love Lost, for our favorite NYC party, Wierd. As always, it takes a lot of misanthropic people wrapped in black, to be the nicest, and most supportive community between the DMV and the NYC. This time we were even more honored to be able to hit the decks on a nite when Fan Death’s own amazing, post-punk straight from the Factory, Pleasure Leftists took the stage to tear it apart piece by piece.

We can’t thank everyone at Wierd and Home Sweet Home enough for their gracious hosting. Since perception is reality, and observation leads to perception, here are some fantastic shots by Zincink to make my words historic fact, and if you like these images, you can check out more on Zincink’s Flickr stream.

An incidental reminder: Sean Gray and I do this on the DMV homefront every third Sunday at the Velvet Lounge. So come join us, and remember, there’s No Love Lost….

Our Name is Legion//Our Projects are Many

Well, well, well, it seems I’ve returned to my own vizion, and with the same carni-barking hustle in tow.

Those of us living in the EV are often deeply contorted through a multitude of projects, and while I can’t speak for the total mass, I will say that Sean, Ian, and I are in the mires of productivity.

First, might I remind the creatures of the DMV that No Love Lost is happening once again this Sunday (8/21) at Velvet the Velvet Lounge:

In case you can’t read fliers, the details are:

No Love Lost
Sun 8/21
The Velvet Lounge
915 U St NW
Washington, DC

We even have one of those painfully nifty FB events for the digitally repaired…

This will be another NYC send off for Sean and I, but more on that later.

Don’t be prepared to retire just yet, as the record label Ian masterminds, Cricket Cemetery, is having its first showcase on Mon, 8/22. Not only that, but sir Ian will also be performing in his band Lions&Tigers&Whales,for which I also now sing. Don’t believe me? Here’s a rough rehearsal demo, recorded through a top of the line laptop:

Beyond that, AAA, and the Tender Thrill are also playing.

For the internet inclined, here again is an FB event. And for the rest of the world, the details are as follows:

Cricket Cemetery
SHOWCASE 8.22. 2011
9:00pm – 11:30pm
Galaxy Hut
2711 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, VA 22201

Incidentally, though Ian is always coursing through music projects, I could not be more excited for another band he’s conquering new territory with, Bitter American. It’s a new take on a throwback hardcore punk sound, (yeah, “hardcore punk,” that far back), in all the best ways possible. Their first release comes out on Cricket Cemetery soon, but in the meantime, burn your ears with this:

From there the storm only grows stronger as we find Sean and I moving the front back up to NY to spend another dark evening DJing at Wierd. Last time was an amazing experience, and we were ill-blessed by the sounds of Frank [Just Frank]. However, this time there is almost more a crackle of excitement as we join forces with Fan Death Records’ own Pleasure Leftists for an indescribable evening. If you’ve been trapped outside of the space time continuum, and are unfamiliar, Pleasure Leftists are like the reincarnation of some obscure, long lost Factory Band. It goes a little something like this:

Again, there is a handy FB event for the human impaired.

And so, in the spirit of no peace for the wicked, we march ever onward for the big finish of this round. Fan Death Records is also having a showcase in the next week. This one is the much hyped show at Mishka.

I’ll spare you the endless reams of frenzied excitement we’ve all been churning out about this, but I will let Mishka do a bit of the talking:

Again, there is a handy FB event.

But allow me to expound a bit.

Longtime, both Fan Death, and No Love Lost friends, Screen Vinyl Image will be coating the entire space with their rich aural webs.

Once again the aforementioned Pleasure Leftists will storm the planks in their frantically sour fashion.

But the black monolith of the entire event will be another elusive performance by the master of downtrodden synth pop: Puerto Rico Flowers.

It is physically impossible to have read any online music periodical and not know about the genius of this group. I myself have spent a substantial amount of time singing hymns of praise. In fact, shooting myself in foot a bit, I’d dare say, if you only attend one thing on this entire list, it should be seeing Puerto Rico Flowers, at all cost.

And from there friends, we retire back into the dark corners of the earth. But I assure you, it will not be for long. Join us, won’t you?