If you’re going to look up “Killed By Meth” on google, please, do not stray into the images or horrifying news stories, but instead go straight to It’s Trash Records, otherwise you’re in for a rough time of Barbara-Bush-Era-Just-Say-No propaganda. Tell the google gods that you’re just looking for the newest volume of Killed By Meth, out now on It’s Trash Records!
Then again that might be the point; take a peak at some of the grimmest images coming out of the Rust Belt – which according to “It’s Trash” includes our Canadian neighbors sandwiched between Detroit and New York, which might seem surprising when referring to the Rust Belt (yes we’re all guilty of this “America first” mindset), but it only makes sense when you look at the map on the back cover, also just the fact that It’s Trash exists out there proves there must be a scene worth checking out.
It’s Trash is a radio station/record label based in London, Ontario, which has dug down into the depths of the rust belt to uncover the grimiest garage punk, no wave, power pop, and Canadian rock ‘n’ roll for the rest of us weirdos who enjoy such things to discover. Their motto “If it’s raw, if it’s fast…It’s Trash!” embodies the contradiction of lo-fi punk music being the highest regarded, in the best way possible. The radio show is almost two hours packed to the brim with fast n dirty songs with minimal exposition between the tunes.
Carrying on the “Killed by Death” torch, which in itself is a black hole of internet searches down discogs for more tracks by the weirdest and gnarliest punk bands of old, It’s Trash does a solid job of digging up the punks keeping it rusty in 2018. The third installment of the comp showcases Grand Rapids locals Lost System, and fellow Michigan dwellers Werewolf Jones (Detroit), Beauticians (Detroit), and Muzzy (Kalamazoo). The second volume of Killed By Meth featured other Michigan killers Erik Nervous (Kalamazoo) and Eroders (Detroit), the latter which also has a solid EP on It’s Trash and this is all worth checking out and supporting.
Volume 3 takes off with a titular song by a band called S.L.I.P which seems kinda weird to just come into play at the third volume of a compilation but they sound like when Black Flag still had Keith Morris, before they became a jock rock band, which sits well with me. Lost System provide the spookiest track on the album, probably the only guitarless band in all of KBM history and a reminder that punk rawk doesn’t necessitate fuzzed out power chords and can in fact take many spookier shapes and forms.
Werewolf Jones snuck in a live recording, which happens to be one of the few releases from this band so far. Props to Beauticians for more deviously spooky synth sounds. I couldn’t dig up any info on Muzzy, supposedly based in Kalamazoo, but I really dig their deadpan vocals.
Wlmrt comes through with a solid jam, one of my favorites on the comp for its layers of hectic vocals. The Dracu-lahs bring the comp to a close with a perfect ender. Their track immediately hooks you with a catchy and singable hook, b-b-b-burn is the word, and after a false stop/breakdown jam, they swing the energy back around and burn the mother down.
Killed by Meth Volume 3 is out now and available to stream and purchase here: https://itstrashrecords.bandcamp.com/album/killed-by-meth-3-lp
It’s Trash Podcast: https://www.mixcloud.com/itstrash/