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Jon Cougar Concentration Camp

"Back In The Day" 7" (Missing)

The band's name alone should be reason enough to get this, but if you insist on purchasing records for the music that's on them, this EP doesn't disappoint. It's speedy, melodic punk rock that is truly great. It doesn't look like much, but you shouldn't judge a punk single by its cover.

"Victoria's Secret Sauce" 7" EP (Mutant Pop)

Sooner or later, I'll run out of things to say about punk and with any luck, JCCC will be around when I do and spark that creative engine all over again. That's the problem with us writer types - we have internal combustion engines which require interesting stuff - no fuel, no fire, no story. End of story. Thankfully, JCCC manages to strip punk of pretension and make it fun again. They play punk in much the same way the Ramones did, which is to say they approach it with the same reduction aesthetic of returning rock to its basic, ideal form. Sure, it's identified as punk, but a label is just a label. To me, this is nothing more than a distilled form of ROCK, 180 proof and ready to knock this town on its ass.

"Self-titled" CD (Second Guess)

Yes. Yes, yes, a thousand times yes. Loud, fast, punky and melodic. Does it matter that Chris' growling can be hard to decipher at times? It does not. See, JCCC has the rock, that elusive quality which excuses any shortcomings. As simply as possible, they embody the DIY spirit of punk and capture the feel of the early days of rock when Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis were committing nightly affronts to America and good ol' Elvis shook his pelvis on national TV. This has all the hell-raising fury of the early days, the same power punk tried to get back to in the first place and lost when it became a reflexive medium which simply ripped itself off and became increasingly inbred. This changes all that, at least for the 30 odd minutes it lasts, and a blissful 30 minutes it is.

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Last modified on Wednesday, March 26, 2008