Review: The Fartz

The Fartz
(Alternative Tentacles)

It’s been a long time since 1982.  I bought a copy of The Fartz, “World Full Of Hate” that summer from the Record Co-op at the University of Maryland.  I put it on cassette so I could skate to it at the Riverdale ditch.  Those blazing fast punk nuggets were the perfect addition to a dusty and sweaty skate jam.  Twenty years later, Blaine Cook and his gaseous cohorts are back to burn the hair off your ass again.  Fifteen explosive punk blasts recorded over two days with the inimitable Jack Endino.  Sounding like an awesome live set, the tone is rich and full, moreso than I remember from my Fartz cassette, and I love it.  Every song here scorches from beginning to end.  Never wasting more than 2 and half minutes on one idea.  The licks these old-timers use are astounding, creating the necessary energy to match their aggression.  Backed by the blistering guitars, the harsh, practically unintelligible vocals revitalize this Motorhead-speed Seattle junk-punk, giving us a lesson in hardcore history and reminding us how good it used to be. And with song titles like, “Rich White American”, “Apathy Is The Enemy”, “What Do You Stand For”, “God Fearing Christians” and Discharge’s “State Control” you realize The Fartz haven’t lost their political edge either.  What’s better than a cover of Discharge?  Not much.  These guys sound just as vital and important as they ever did, even after two decades.  But some people might only know The Fartz because Duff McKagan (Guns and Roses) played drums for them.  That’s what I call injustice.