PLAY THIS YA BASTARD! - REVIEWS
Deep in the dungeons of his gothic castle, the evil scientist performs another genetic experiment on disparate musical genres. 'The kids will never believe this one!' he cackles as he mixes smoky test tubes and beakers of alarming coloured liquids. Suddenly there is an almighty explosion - kerrblam! Through the dispersing mists we see the warped genius's latest creation: Samba Punk. That's Samba. And Punk. Together. Yup.
Enter Bloco Vomit and their delightfully titled Play This You Bastard. But what does it actually sound like? As if you had to ask. Imagine The Exploited accidentally meeting one of those big gangs of Festival loonies that bang bin lids for entertainment, and have a massive swedge with them. You've got it. Their 'version' of 'California Uber Alles' (I know, I know) has to be heard to be believed. It goes without saying that this record is both utterly fantastic and truly terrifying.
Edinburgh's celebrated samba punk outfit (and possibly best live band) have developed their splendidly shambolic racket into quite a splendidly tight racket, and now been signed to a Brazilian label! Repertoire is slipping backwards historically (Louie Louie and Something Else this time): we expect the samba punk skiffle set imminently. Great album! X Creature,
The Big Issue
Much classier than their name suggests, Edinburgh's Bloco Vomit are perhaps the only samba punk band - welding Sex Pistols guitar thrashing with Brazilian drums and a brass section. They don't exactly take themselves seriously, but this second album - the first was called Never Mind The Bossa Nova is more than a one joke pony. Carnaval in Olinda is gentle, reflective and lovely. It's no classic, but if your'e struggling to choose from 1000 naff party albums this Christmas, stop now. This is much, much better. ***
New album Play This Ya Bastard broadens out the source material to encompass Sweet Transvestite (the band cross-dress for live shows), a Wild Thing/Louie Louie segue, and a couple of originals. Pick of the bunch, though, are the two punk covers: an unmitigated trashing of California Uber Alles and another version (there's one on the first record too) of Crass's Do They Owe Us a Living?.
Edinburgh Live Music Guide
I was choked with the flu and bloody miserable when I first span this - and it sounded bloody awful. Having heard Bloco Vomit's first album, and seen them live, I felt it was only fair to give them a proper hearing at a later date. With my aural organs in a far more responsive attitude a few days later this sounded great. Easy listening this is not. But what would you expect of an anarchistic Samba Punk band? You definetly need a fully operative pairs of ears and an open frame of mind to enjoy Bloco Vomit's offbeat mix of Brazilian rhythm and punk and 60's garage covers. And that's exactly what it is, a mix. Bloco's 10-piece orchestra don't so much cover in Samba style, they allow each section to play their own bit and let your brain and ears piece it all together. The guitars and vocals lay the backbone punk style, the Samba drums rattle the rhythm, and somewhere inbetween the trumpets loosely gel it together.It's all very risky territory what they attempt, but by sticking to cover versions you know roughly what you're supposed to be hearing, and if you've an ear for punk then it works very well. Similar to what Chumbawamba were getting at before they went dance, but with far more emphasis on party than profanity. Punk by ethic, but party by nature.
Tall Paul R
A band who like to mix business with pleasure for sure. But being Scotland's leading exponents of the samba punk genre isn't all fun and games - it is a precise art. Bloco Vomit aren't just cross-dressing accountants, oh no. Firstly it requires a quality record collection, which they clearly have. Next stage of the process is to painstakingly select tracks which lend themselves to the various Brazilian rhythms, and of course ones that complement the self-penned tracks on the album. Crass's "Owe Us a Living' is an obvious choice for the batucadas treatment, while 'Have Love Will Travel' is clearly matacatu in basis... actually, that's bollocks, it would take a degree in music from Sao Paulo University to identify the diverse range of rhythms here. To the uninitiated it sounds more like the Drummers of Burundi jamming with the Keith Moon Orchestra. On dustbin lids. 'California Uber Alles' and 'Sweet Transvestite' (!) are among those covered, but for me it's the self-penned 'Carnival in Olinda' which is best here, a mad rush of punk vocals and frantic brass all held together by those Latin rhythms. So Bloco Vomit, maybe all fun and games onstage, but serious about music. In fact, they mean it, man.
The Student Edinburgh University
They have four Ph.Ds and five Masters between them, cross-dress in Brazilian carnival costume for their gigs and play something called Samna Punk. Not the most likely sounding of bands, but nevertheless as large (or in fact, much larger than life itself). This, their second album, follows hot on the heels of the leopard-print heels of Never Mind The Bossa Nova, Here's Bloco Vomit. As with their debut CD, this offering is a mixture of drums, trumpets and heavy, punky guitar riffs, with lyrics such as You try, you try, you try to get out / But you can't 'cos they fucked you about. Ricky Martin meets Rocky Horror, this music lacks nothing and appeals to everyone, from Goths with a penchant for Latin beats to punks looking for a trip down memory lane without the aid of a safety pin. And they do a cover of Wild Thing.
Edinburgh Evening News
- Play this only if you like music rough and ready
Play This Ya B...d Bloco Vomit
Bloco Vomit can be taken two ways. They are either some old geezers having a trip down memory lane, punk style - or a serious band who have taken the retro idea way too far. Whichever, their unholy alliance of frantic samba drumming with punk standards has seen them garner a deal with Trama Records in Brazil, so they must be doing something right. This latest EP from the Edinburgh based band is described as Samba Punk, and it takes you back, or rather aback, when you first hear it. But admittedly as the album progresses you find yourself becoming endeared to some of the cover version (this is a covers album). On Not Fade Away the vocalist actually does a passable imitation of Mick Jagger, and Something Else could be an early Sex Pistols practice with Sid Vicious on vocals. A bad version of the classic Dead Kennedy's track California Uber Alles can really bring you down, and there is a bad version on this album. Dissonant saxophones provide the madness for Methadone Maracatu and the album finishes, like so many bands of this ilk, with a medley of Wild Thing and Louie Louie, which was fun. There were no credits on this album, and therefore no one to pin the blame on. However, in the best traditions of the garage punk bands, this recording is a ropy effort for those who like it rough and ready, and is on general release around the city, allegedly.