Sunday, February 18, 2007

trance syndictate records

It is hard to make a living playing in a band and just as hard to make your rent running a record label. So it is impressive that King Coffey from the Butthole Surfers decided to start a label back in the 90s. But either way the trance syndicate was born. With the SLA logo stolen for their own you could tell you where in for some fucked up shit from Texas.
I am not a fan or everything they put out but two bands stood out at the time and have stood the test of time for me -the cherubs and johnboy

Cherubs. Although they seemed as fucked up as the Buttholes, the music pushed the whole Drunktank/Unsane sound to a more brutal level. Icing was the 1st record and the one that made me take notice of Trance Syndicate. The music was pretty standard noise rock, but the vocalist set it apart. Real high pitched odd voice. This band could clear a room fast. Loud and abrasive. Heroinman the 2nd lp started and ended with the sound of an off the hook phone that summed up what they were shooting for grating repetitive rock. They nailed it on this record. They were pretty much fucking perfect.
They had a couple singles, splits, and comp appearances. Faded away before they could suck too bad. Trance released a comp that compiled all the singles and odd tracks. The rumor mill brought me a story that the guys had a lowrider bike club. Nice. Cooler than the fixed gear zomibe armies rolling around the bean.
Also fitting into the sorta NYC influenced noise aesthetic was Johnboy, but unlike the cherubs these guys brought it a little more fast and furious. If the Cherubs wanted to rub salt in your wounds, Johnboy wanted to blow your fucking head off. They had more of a bastro or hammerhead type influence. No joke. Power. Pistolswing was the 16th trancesyndicate release and a in tie for my favorite release from them with Heroinman(Heroinman gets the edge due to the cover) This record had all the time changes and sick parts that would crop up on later "tech" style metal and hardcore records. Vocals were a helmety type bark and howl. Saw them play once at the Penalty Box down by North Station. Maybe like 10 people there? Probably with Kudgel and maybe Today is the Day???( I remember seeing them there and the drummer had a headphone mike -ouch. Looked cool on tommy lee) They fucking blew everyone off the stage. Claim Dedications was their 2nd LP and it was good, but not quite pistolswing, but still better than a lot of its competition back in the mid-90s.
Fianlly Trance Syndicate gets a big thank you, for putting out a Roky Erikson record "all who may do my rhyme" and the hit single "we are never talking". Awesome record that kept Roky in the public eye.
So for that I offer a hearty salute to the Trance Syndicate

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