Sunday, May 14, 2006

Poison Idea - Latest Will & Testament

I can't believe I totally missed this;

POISON IDEA "Latest will and testament" LP / CD

Worldwide Release Date 19th May 2006

POISON IDEA are back again with a new record!!! Germany´s FAREWELL Records is proud to announce the release of the new record "Latest will and testament" by the "Kings of Punk" from Portland, Oregon. Poison Idea was started in 1980 in Portland, Oregon. The band was motivated back then by the Germs and Black Flag, and took their musical cues from bands such as Discharge and SOA. Pushing the speed limits of contemporary punk rock, they played raw and angry hardcore the likes of which had rarely been heard before (or since). Their 1983 debut EP, "Pick Your King", is a classic and arguably one of the best hardcore record ever released. Its subsequent followup, "Record Collectors are Pretentious Assholes" (featuring Pig Champion's substantial collection on the cover). Both records were put out on a small label from Eugene, Oregon called Fatal Erection.
In 1986, Poison Idea released the aptly titled "Kings of Punk" LP on Pushead's Pusmort label. By this time, the band's sound had changed from manic, breakneck thrash, to a more driving, Motorhead-influenced attack - losing none of their intensity, anger, or nihilism. In the next few years, Poison Idea's lineup (mainly the rhythm section) changed several times. 1987's "War All the Time" was released. By 1989, Poison Idea started their own record lable, American Leather, after having trouble with record companies and distributors in the past, and began by reissuing their 1982 demo. The band recorded the excellent "Discontent" 7" an in 1990 they released the classic "Feel the Darkness" LP, successfully combining (where so, so many others had failed) the best elements of hardcore and hard rock for a dark, powerful sound. In the next three years, Poison Idea put out several more records on American Leather - two more full-lengths, a string of 7"s, and an LP collection of all covers. When Pig Champion decided to leave the band in 1993, Poison Idea called it quits. Their last show on 6th of june 1993 was released as the "Pig´s last stand" CD in 1996 on Sub Pop Records.

In a way, the group's widest success came indirectly -- when the multimillion-selling band PANTERA recorded "The Badge," a song by Roberts and Jerry A. that was originally on POISON IDEAD's "Feel the Darkness", for the 1994 movie soundtrack "The Crow", which went on to platinum sales. But P.I. (as fans tended to shorten the group's name) already had earned its own measure of fame. Locally, it put on notoriously energetic, even chaotic shows -- often highlighted by Jerry A.'s onstage fire breathing.

However, three years after the break-up the band briefly reformed in 1996 and recorded 1997 the "Learning to scream" 7" for Taang!, who also reissued (again) most of their early catalog. The band continued to play and gig, but without a new record the bands existance didn´t get noticed outside the american north-west. In 2003 and 2004 POISON IDEA toured Europe twice as well as Japan. And now they are back with the new album "Latest will and testament", the release of this record was overshadowed by the death of POISON IDEAs Tom Roberts at the end of january 2006.

In describing Tom Roberts, guitarist of the Portland punk band Poison Idea, there's really no way to get around the word "big" or its synonyms. His sound was huge and fierce, his lifestyle was extreme, and his massive weight led him to go more commonly by the nicknames Tom Pig and even Pig Champion. Sometimes weighing 450 pounds or more, Roberts was known for his size as well as for drinking prodigiously and generally living life on the edge. But those who knew and worked with him describe him as a man of keen intellect and relentless curiosity, a gentle giant behind the brusque exterior. "If anybody thought he was up there as some nihilistic, morbidly obese guy just flailing around, no," said David Wilds, who managed the band from 1988-91. "He was remarkable for his knowledge of any kind of music. It's been said that Poison Idea was a punk band that could really play, and a lot of that was due to Tom. He chose a simple, stripped-down sound for artistic reasons, not lack of ability. There was structure, the material was well-rehearsed, and he really cared what the audience thought". So it has to be said now that the world wide punk and hardcore scene lost a big piece of its rock community when Roberts died at the age of 47. He was found dead in his home from an untreated kidney infection and the flu. Roberts' musical acumen, force of personality and uncompromising attitude were key factors in making Poison Idea one of the most influential and memorable forces in the punk rock and hardcore underground for the past quarter century. It has to be said that Tom´s death came unexpected. The title of this new record already had been chosen way before Tom died. The story behind the album title can be read inside the record-package, written by Jerry A. Just a week before Tom died he wrote liner-notes for the new album "Latest will and testament", which you can read here below. It is self-explainatory to the max and doesn´t need any more quotes from the record lable promoter!

"This is a dedication of love to Jerry A. and Poison Idea. It is with great
pride that we have delivered this LP. That we have completed it is almost a
miracle. We were always obsessed with trying to top the past. I feel this
new record stands up to the standards of rip-snortin`punk rock we delivered
on earlier recordings. If you disagree, write your opinion on a Darby Crash
wig and send it to somebody who cares!

To the gossips, "writers", liars, internet impersonators and record labels
who hide behind p.o. boxes, secretaries, computers and strippers: spare us
anymore of your hip, angry poo poo. There is shit on your mother`s asshole!
With this record we are back and, through legal means or direct action, will
level your karma!

A message to record labels who continue to sell our records and provide no
accounts: watch out!

I hope this makes the fans happy. It`s a tribute to 25 years of tortured
loving self-abuse. PI comes back again. It`s like Elvis`68 comeback special
in a `77 Easter basket. Remember that punks are the old farts of today and
old farts stink the worst.

Hey Kids. Do it yourself -- it`s better!

"Pig Champion"

POISON IDEA "Latest will and testament" LP/CD tracklist:
1. Number one
2. Jihad love
3. Factor X
4. Kill the messenger
5. Novelty
6. Fake
7. With / Against
8. Baby flys
9. Nothin´ to say
10. Atonement for the cursed

Band Line-up:
Jerry A. Lang - Vocals
Tom Roberts - Guitar
Jimmy Talor - Guitar
Chris Carey - Bass
Chris Cuthbert - Drums