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Scene Point Blank's Favorites: The Year So Far (July 2021)

Music • July 6, 2021

The less said about 2021 so far the better, right? We won't rehash the political chaos, the ongoing climate crisis, the billionaire space race and, of course, the C-word (Covid-19 – what were you thinking?). Instead, we'll focus on the music. Here are a set of lists by our staff which sum up the best albums released this year so far. There's a mix of stuff in here so dig in and check out the things you've missed, and read our reviews of the best ones. Let us know what incredible records we've missed, but in the mean time, check out our favorite albums of 2021 thus far. Aaron's Top 5 of 2021 So Far 1 Olivia Rodrigo Sour (Geffen) "How do you do fellow kids?" Yeah, it's probably not "punk" to highlight a pop album, but Olivia Rodrigo's Sour deserves it. You're fooling yourself though if you don't hear a little Bikini Kill in opening track, "Brutal," or missing the influence Paramore had over hit single, "Good 4 U." Sour has its bits of pop-punk, but doesn't stray far from the Singer-Songwriter tree harboring Phoebe Bridgers or Lucy Dacus. She's just a bit more Pop about it. - Aaron H 2 AFI Bodies (Rise) This band is 11 albums into their career and are still finding ways to surprise. Now, I admit, I'm a little biased when it comes to new AFI albums. As a whole, Bodies feels a little disjointed as it jumps from Post-Hardcore to New Wave … Read more

Scatenato Ma Non Troppo #3

Regular Columns / Scatenato Ma Non Troppo • June 22, 2021

At the midpoint of 2021, a year which has thus far brought both hopeful and more troubling signs for humanity, … Read more

Guest List: Father's Day Edition (Adam Carson)

Music • June 7, 2021

Welcome to the latest installment of our new feature, The Guest List! We're flipping the script on our "Set List" … Read more

Get In The Van Dummy, We're Going Surfing!

Regular Columns / Running on Nothing • June 7, 2021

I was in a band called The Lippies. I say "was" because we just broke up. Again. Hahahahaha! When we … Read more

Latest album reviews browse all

Travoltas

Back To The City
White Russian Records (2021)

Somehow it seems to me that Travoltas released Until We Hit The Shore only last year or perhaps the year before. But nooooo, it’s been four years already. That record is still on heavy rotation here, especially when the weather is sunny and the temperature is high (but not too hot). So I was so happy to hear a new EP by … Read more

Bootlicker

Self-Titled
Neon Waste, Static Shock Records (2021)

Rough and tough d-beat, oi-influenced punk with a boot on the cover. If you follow the scene you probably already have a sense of what Bootlicker sounds like based on that alone. Released on Neon Waste (USA/Canada) and Static Shock (UK), this is Discharge-influenced punk that pulls no punches. It’s angry, shouty, and aggressive as all get-out with memorable lyrics … Read more

Stella Research Committee

A Proposed Method for Determining Sanding Fitness
Independent (2021)

Labels like Amphetamine Reptile and Skin Graft Records and the “now wave” and noise rock avalanche they launched has served as an immense source of inspiration for a myriad of bands. Listening to Stella Research Committee’s fifth LP, they do not only seem to be overly familiar with the output of the aforementioned label rosters, but have channelled those influences … Read more

The Dumpies

Drunk Dial #8
Drunk Dial Records (2021)

A quick word on the Drunk Dial series. Basically, the label asks bands to get intoxicated, then record an original a-side and a cover b-side.On #8, we get The Dumpies, who deliver 4 songs at a total runtime of five minutes. It’s fast, catchy and harmonized rough-around-the-edges garage-punk goodness. Take some of your favorite garage bands and speed them up. … Read more

Additional album reviews

ZEPHYR

Don’t Worry About It
Snappy Little Numbers (2020)

It’s fantastic to still see label holding up the torch when it comes to being dedicated to the fine art of the analogue format, partly because of its sonic superiority, … Read more

Inhumanity Vortex

Reverse Engineering
Independent (2020)

Inhumanity Vortex started life in Poland in 2008 as the project of Tomasz Dziekoński and has slowly evolved over time into a sort of cyber tech-death metal band that has … Read more

Various Artists

Ink Bomb - No Breakfast Goodbye - split
Horn & Hoof Records/Dental Records/Concrete Head Entertainment (2021)

Two Dutch punk groups decided to join forces. 2020 saw their dreams of playing live go up in smoke. What to do instead? Write new music! Both bands bring three … Read more

Amenra

De Doorn
Relapse (2021)

Memories burn in the flames while onlookers stare on. Relief washes over those present as though cleansed in the fires and reborn. Screams of catharsis spill from the lips of … Read more

Pierce With Arrow

Shatter
Dais Records (2021)

Troy Pierce has been creating off-kilter techno since the mid ‘00s, always opting for a non-conformist, adventurous output (just listen to his 2007 full-length, Gone Astray). Now, he is joined by another … Read more

Billie Eilish

Photobook
hachette Book Group (2021)

Love her, hate her – the thing that cannot be dispute is that she has left an indelible mark on the firmament of contemporary popular music. To tide over the … Read more

News headlines browse all

SPB exclusive: Can This Be It?? 4-band split stream

Posted in Records on July 1, 2021

There is no single way to make music, or to release it for that matter. At Scene Point Blank we feature a new record (nearly) each month, but some are full-lengths of new material, some are EPs, some collect old material, and some are compilations. There are so many ways … Read more

Expanded Ruminations of Conor Oberst

Posted in Records on July 25, 2021

As of Friday July 23, an expanded edition of Conor Oberst’s Ruminations is now available on all formats via Nonesuch Records. The record, originally released in 2016 as Oberst's first solo … Read more

Actors' Acts of Worship

Posted in Records on July 25, 2021

Actors will return on Oct. 1 with a new album called Acts Of Worship, releasing via Artoffact Records. The Vancouver-based band has shared a single called "Only Lonely" now to … Read more

Sam Johnson (Choke Up) solo

Posted in Records on July 25, 2021

Sam Johnson, also of post-hardcore group Choke UP, has announced his solo debut to come in early fall. The record is titled Along the Dark Edges of Everything and will release on … Read more

Halo Of Flies + Absolute Contempt to release Grandeur tape

Posted in Records on July 24, 2021

On August 20, Halo Of Flies Records and Absolute Contempt Records are teaming up for the release of Aurea Aetasby Grandeur. The album releases in North and South America on cassette … Read more

Coma Scale presents Sirens

Posted in Records on July 24, 2021

Glasgow-based post-rock band Coma Scale will release a new album called Sirens on Sept. 17. The album, playing a modernized, more energetic version of post-rock with stoner and post-punk influence feastures … Read more

Hexa returns (Lawrence English + Jamie Stewart)

Posted in Records on July 24, 2021

Hexa, a joint ambient collaboration between Lawrence English (Room40) and Jamie Stewart (Xiu Xiu) is back the duo's second release and first since 2016. Titled Material Interstices, the new record releases … Read more

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