Based on an actual unbiased CD review linked below.
Many albums are reissued for "reasons" -- Band X was ahead of its time, criminally underappreciated, influential yet out of print, blah blah blah yadda yadda yadda. And there was definitely something cool about Swami reissuing our stuff on an ENHANCED CD.
The SYRACUSE PENETRATORS were centered around Eliot ("Spike") Kagan and Jack ("Penetrator") Lipton, whose own solo CD is also available here at CDBABY.(***** See additional note below. *****) We released four vinyl singles and EP's on our own local label Fred Records; made a video for the newly rediscovered DJ fave "Shopping Bag" that was summarily rejected by MTV at the time but which got much love on Syracuse's public access cable and which is also available on the Swami CD; and then we seemingly retired from public view. Our publicity photos (also on the CD as data files) made us look like "...a bunch of hammy dudes with bushy hair and smarmy mustaches, DIY as fuck...", which isn't too far from the truth, but we'll let you the listeners that we are trying to entice to purchase the CD decide that for yourselves. And yeah maybe we "...were a typical garage band, rocking hard and slightly sucking in the best way imaginable," but hey what's wrong with that?
The Swami Basement Anthology CD doesn't so much redress an injustice as it laughs in the face of common sense. Because a neat thing happens-- instead of sitting down with a punk reissue touted as important and trying to hear its salience through a bunch of tinny crashing and banging, you can actually enjoy the Penetrators' earlier life's work for what it is: A bunch of dudes having fun, banging out garage anthems that hit the usual marks-- boredom and apathy on the wailing "Teenage Lifestyle"; complacent consumption on the skronking stomper "Shopping Bag"; the redemptive power of rock on "Rock-N-Roll Face" ("But you can't get on my case/ When I wear my rock-n-roll face!").
Most indicative of the Penetrators' spirit is "#1 Band in Town", which might as well have been called "Penetrators' Theme". Over a righteously swaggering riff, the band proclaims their dominance in a big sing-along: "We're the Penetrators, we don't fuck around/ 'Cause we're the number one band in this town!" While this record is thrillingly inessential, it's a time capsule for a simpler musical era, before the Internet and the indie infrastructure existed, when the being the best band in town was really something to be proud of.
Spot On, Bri.
Anyway, aside from shilling our latest release here at CDBABY, we also have been performing live at select venues, including an historic reunion performance at the 2003 Chicago BlackOut!, and have been recording our new studio release in the wilds of upstate New York. You can also keep up with our latest doings and purchase other vinyl or cd releases from us directly at www.fredrecords.com and ebay.stores.com/Fred-Records .
***** Probably just as good a place as any to mention that my own solo CD based on an EP I did in TX is now available here at baby as well. Search for Spike Penetrator here at cdbaby and you won't be sorry. *****
Thanks, and keep rocking y'all. SP