NEVER MIND THE BOSSA NOVA - REVIEWS
A fine selection of UK punk standards from the golden era, with added blattering of Brazilian Afro-Bloc style drumming from folks with a MacUmba connection. Splendidly noisy, the perfect antidote to all that Enyareena stuff, and a bargain at £7.99 incl p&p from PO Box 23109, Edinburgh EH6 4ZN.
BLOCO VOMIT earn the plaudits for being this issue's most bizarrely interesting item. 'Never Mind The Bossa Nova, Here's Bloco Vomit' is the album's title. Twelve tracks of samba-punk from a bunch of slightly balding, lovable spikey tops who also just happen to be members of Edinburgh's Samba school. What's on offer are ten classic punk/new wave songs - Teenage Kicks, Pretty Vacant, Oh Bondage Up Yours, Love Lies Limp, Should I Stay or Should I Go and more ...all given an affectionate and rhythmic kick in the balls. The infectious multi-percussion of this ten-piece (count 'em) and carious added samba, batucada and maracatu stylings (the originals popular in Brazil) create a new sense of drive to proceedings. Mostly, though, it's simply great fun, and they're riotously entertaining live, apparently. Just how they follow this is anyone's guess!
Blackmail Promotions (Featured Artist October 1998)
Okay so at first thought, Samba Punk didn't sound like it would be a great idea right? Wrong! This CD was awesome! If you love punk, you must take a listen, at least to satisfy your curiosity. Totally whacky concept which works well for these guys. It's definitely not for the fainthearted, but more for the funloving. Imagine the Sex Pistols with a Salsa-type beat to it and go from there.
They're calling it Samba Punk and it's the kind of from-nowhere brainwave that caused Tortelvis to kick off Dred Zeppelin. Bloco Vomit picked 12 of their favourite punk tunes and subjected them to a radical beating---in the form of tribal drum patterns like Batucada, Baiao, Maracatu and Samba. The songs include "Jilted John", "Pretty Vacant", "Roadrunner" and "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" The bizarre thing is that it really does work, the percussive inventiveness, especially an incredible bass sound, giving a whole new dimension to classics like "Oh Bondage, Up Yours!" In a further twist, they all cross-dress for live performances. Excellent record.
ORGAN number 61
BLOCO VOMIT Yes!!! What is this, maniac tribal drumming while some scrawny punk rock voice yells Do they owe us a Living, cause they do cause they do...Here's a band for Paco's Racket Club! They've gone into a Jilted John song now Gordon is a Moron - Mad Scots men who mix punk rock songs with Brazilian samba drumming - LATINO PUNK ROCK!!!, apparently they're into cross dressing and usually have puppets with them on stage, hang on, this is what we want, not this Pepadine/Smug same-old-shit crap. That's a wicked Fergal Undertone voice, has John Peel heard this stuff???? tHIS RULES, hey look, they've got their trumpets out now, and they've got Miss Construed and Annie Climax in there playing percussion. Best version of Police and Thieves we've ever heard - FULL ON SAMBA PUNK...hang on, I've read the blurb now, this is a tape of a CD they've released on their own label - it's a tape someone has sent in trying to get us to give them gigs (we will, we have to!). I'll make a phone call and sort the thing out...Right, about time they got on to Pretty Vacant...coolest tape for ages, more details tomorrow when I've made some phone calls.
This has to be heard to believed... an album of punk covers to the backing of Brazilian drums! Mad? Insane? Well possibly, but in fact absolutely fantastic. The singing of Teenage Kicks is frightenly "Fergally" and this bizarre sound is the most original thing I've heard in ages. There's covers of "Jilted John", "Pretty Vacant" and "Should I Stay Or Should I Go" to name a few. It's surprising how much of it actually works... you may think that it's a joke... but these guys met at the Edinburgh Samba School and can really play!
Michael FlahertySampler's Rating - "Wow"
You could write this one off so easily. A silly band name and an album title that brings back uneasy memories of the cheesiest cash-in. And it involves listening to a parade of British punk rock classics, but played this time by slightly mellower but still spiked-up punk scene veterans with transvestite inclinations. Who've discovered the drums of Brazil and turned the old gobbers' anthems into rattling percussion-fests of samba, baiao, maracatu and batucada. You could flick it towards the novelty bin, but if I were you I'd give it a listen.
Why? Well, I could get all academic on your arse and point out the old cameraderie between punk and reggae, the latter not too many family jumps away from the Brazilian bang. Or note punk's banner values of rebellion, protest, solidarity and independence; and then show how that links to the music the Brazilian slaves cooked up as the African beat headed further south-west. But to be honest, you don't need me to lecture you about this. Because it's all obvious when you slide "Never Mind The Bossa Nova" into your CD player and press "play". Silliness be buggered - this works. Even recorded rough'n'ready on a shoestring and half a drumstick, minus the slap and dresses and the carnival floats, it's obvious that however ludicrous the idea seems, all that's outweighed by the excitement and drive given to it by the brutal clattering power of all that percussion and the subliminal bassquake of massed surdo drums, plus the odd bit of street-partying trumpet and sax, with ringleader Gary's guitar holding down the Rat pedal line and - oh, irony - the harmony.
A slamming version of Crass' upfront anarchist rant "Do They Owe Us A Living?" kicks it all off like a machine-gun display. But some of "Never Mind The Bossa Nova" is just sheer pisstaking fun. Whose idea was it to cover "Jilted John"? And we've got to count the versions of "Teenage Kicks" and the tripping-toed Jonathan Richman "Roadrunner" as pop fellow travellers to all this punk racket, exposing Bloco Vomit as people who like a good tune and a bit of cheek as much as a rebel shout. And it's sort of inevitable that those old dogs The Clash would make a showing, fitting as they do perfectly into the Caribbean/Latino drift the Blocos favour. So there's the old warhorse "Should I Stay Or Should I Go?" adjusting to a steamy wall-to-wall rattle of rhythm, and there's a trip via Strummer and co. to Junior Murvin's "Police And Thieves" complete with woozy trumpet. Both manage the tricky feat of simultaneously bringing to mind both the tropical sun beating down on shantytown and the British rain pissing down on dingy street corners.
This collision of sullen and suncharged is part of what makes "Never Mind The Bossa Nova" so interesting. "Pretty Vacant" steams in on a continous drumroll, overpowering Johnny Rotten's corrosive cynicism with the heightened bloodthrob of a carnival parade. And when Esther blowtorches her way through a blistering version of X-Ray Spex's "Oh Bondage, Up Yours!" (complete with razzing fiesta horns), Poly Styrene's two-fingered challenge to Brit staidness transforms into a riot of seven-foot multi-racial dominatrices in multicoloured ostrich-feathers and PVC dancing on the palms of Rio's giant Jesus. While the version of Siouxsie & The Banshees "Metal Postcard (Mitageisen)" isn't that far off The Creatures anyhow, Ewen's squeaky, gender-swapping Cockney venture into Alternative TV's "Love Lies Limp" is surprisingly effective. A song of disaffection and disinterested impotence sits odd against the groin-pulse of the surdo drumming, but then why not pump up that alienation effect?
In the middle of the album comes a genuine bit of traditional bossa - "Gambinda Nova" - and it sounds no less fierce and inclusive than any punk call-to-arms. Bloco Vomit may be a laugh, but they're also clearly in love with both of the strands that make up their samba-punk, and amid the malarkey they prove that such love can involve both laughs and seriousness. Indeed, the fierce irreverent pulse of the whole thing does make you idly wonder: might the British punk revolt have been more effective if it had been modelled on Rio liberation bands rather than on The Who? Could you have seen the bleached'n'ragged hordes swarming out of the Electric Ballroom and Notre Dame Hall and filling the streets with the boom of hands on hide?
Kaptian Powers, www.mtska.com
This is the coolest thing I have heard in quite some time. It's fucking samba! It's like 200 drummers and some guitar players! Forget the new Jennifer Lopez album or Ricky Martin, they wish in their wildest wet dreams they had the Latin beat down like these band from Scotland. For those of you unfamilar with samba, it's a South American style of music similar to mambo, it just involves a lot of percussion and horns. Hell, this guy Rob plays salt shakers and breaks eggs in a few songs. So you're wondering, what sort songs do they do? Old school punk tunes of course. Now that sounds out there. But it actually works. They rip through "Do They Owe Us A Living", "Pretty Vacant", "Should I Stay Or Should I Go", and other classics from the likes of the Undertones and X-Ray Spex. You will not believe how well it translates to samba. The Crass song actually is enhanced by the extra instrumentation. I love this album, this should be the wave of the future...
FINAL SCORES: no lyric sheets, but you should already know the damn words you mallrat!!
Parental Discretion Advised: Explicit Rhythms
When you look at a CD's sleeve notes and find people credited with playing the surdo, puppet and banana, you know you're not dealing with yet another bunch of Kangol-wearing lads trying to be Oasis. And Bloco Vomit, yet another damn near essential band hailing from Scotland's capital, are as far removed from Los Bros Gallagher as it is possible to get.
If an infinite number of monkeys with an infinite number of typewriters were held at gunpoint and forced to think of two kinds of music that would sit well together, it would take them at least a fortnight to tentatively suggest "punk and samba?". Bands like The Clash and the whole 2-Tone thing in the late 70s/early 80s made the ska-punk crossover seem natural, but no-one with a spiky haircut and a safety-pin has ever looked to the heady and intoxicating rhythms of Brazil for influence before. Or at least if they have, they've kept damn quiet about it.
Quiet is not the first word that springs to mind when you slip "Never Mind The Bossa Nova..." into your unsuspecting hi-fi. Formed by a group of like-minded drumbeaters from the Edinburgh Samba School in 1995, Bloco Vomit (at the last count a 10-piece) combine a traditional and accomplished punk/new wave line-up with a multi-piece Brazilian percussion section, resulting in a sound that captures the best spirit of punk and safety-pins some addictively loin-stirring BIG rhythms to it. Imagine Los Pistoles Sexualez or Gloria Estefan wearing a ripped bin bag and drinking snakebite and you're sorta close.
5 minutes into this and you'll be pogoing round your living room like Speedy Gonzales. On speed. After the punk classic of Crass' "Do They Owe Us A Living?", "Jilted John" (y'know - "Gordon is a moron...") is the first number to demonstrate the monumental power of the percussion section, exploding around the novelty new wave song like firecrackers at a Mardi Gras. If you were trapped inside a nuclear submarine going full-speed ahead whilst Godzilla dropped depth charges onto your head, this is what it'd sound like. More than slightly daft, yes, but visceral, vital and vucking good fun.
An LP full of punk covers (with one exception, the effective traditional "Gambinda Nova"), each song willingly lays itself bare - allowing Bloco V to clothe it in gloriously OTT Brazilian festival outfits - then pogos around the place, resplendent in its new gear with a big stupid grin on its face. "Pretty Vacant", "Should I Stay Or Should I Go?", "Oh Bondage, Up Yours!": each gets the Bloco treatment and comes out - if not better than the original - then certainly none the worse for wear. Indeed, the band treat the songs with an irreverence that is decidedly healthy and seem to be able to cope with the fact that music can be fun, not just po-faced, introspective and requiring a 20-piece string section. And live, when the band go the whole hog and cross-dress in traditional Brazilian street party style (complete with puppet show), New Seriousness is the last thing on anyone's mind.
If you're old enough to remember the originals, this will fill you with nostalgia and have you looking out the bondage gear again (then putting it away again when you find it doesn't fit any more). If you're not old enough, who cares? Come to Bloco Vomit's party anyway...good times guaranteed.
Punk's not dead - it just learned to samba.
Wherever Vomit is, I'm there to check it out. Vomit + samba punk = definitely my cup of tea, I knew instantly even before visiting their web site or listening to their CD. Very unusual mix of Brazilian rhythms and punk classics including "Teenage Kicks", "Pretty Vacant", "Police and Thieves", etc. This is their debut and it's released for their own label called X Creature Productions. Lots of likeable sounds, produced with the help of many unusual instruments like surdo, repinique, chocalho, etc.
Ready for Gospel truth yet? Bloco Vomit Kicks Ass!
This is noisy, irreverent, and above all, fun. And if you don't like seventies' British punk, chances are you're going to hate it. Bloco Vomit's samba punk is basically that, underpinned with frantic percussive drumming. It couldn't even remotely be called folk, of course (unless one goes with the view that punk is a form of folk music) so I'm not really sure what it's doing here ;). The twelve tracks are spirited cover versions of classic punk songs including "Pretty Vacant", "Should I Stay or Should I Go", "Police and Thieves", "Teenage Kicks" and the wonderful "Jilted John" (quote: "I'm so upset - I should smash his face in - ah yeah but he's bigger than me i'n'he ... - ah well - I don't care!"). If you like those you'll probably enjoy this album a great deal.
This is a album that you might think another compilation of old punk tunes. But no, this is not what it is! The album is pure brilliant, it is hard to imagine punk music played with Samba! Well, this is what this album is all about.
Do They Owe Us A Living? The original was done by Crass, this sounds really fresh with the samba beats running through the song and the vocals just sound the same as the original. Jilted John This is just amazing, the song was great the first time, this time the song is fresh and more powerful than the original. Teenage Kicks This song give you the same feeling as it was first done it is so hard to explain the new feeling you get when you listen to this.Police & Thieves If Joe Strummer could listen to this he would say that is the way it should have sounded all those years ago, the samba gives it more a reggie feel which if you look back the Clash where trying to do in the original version. Not saying the original version was not a classic song. But this fresh approach is just great. Pretty Vacant Still as strong and powerful as the original, but all I can say is it is very 1998 uptodate and still sounding great.
All I can say to everyone is try and get hold of this album for the fresh approach to punk Samba style. This is one great album and a must for everyone that is into punk music. Or should we say Samba Punk.
Glasgow Subcity Radio, (Featured Album of the Week)
Considering that their music is a blend of samba and punk rock, it's apt that Bloco Vomit launch their album on the day that Scotland and Brazil meet in the World Cup. Consider the soundtrack to the show where Renaldo's magical samba-inspired footwork comes up against a scything tackle by Colin Hendry. The shuddering collision you hear is not stud on flesh, but rather the resonating rhythm of BLOCO VOMIT's percussion driven samba-punk is the spirit of Brazil 1970 meeting the sound of Britain 1977 head-on.
"Samba Punk?" I hear you ask! "What the fuck is Samba Punk?" Well, apparently, Samba Punk is ordinary Punk but with Samba style percussion. Surely not. There's no fuckin' way on Earth that would work! Is there? No. You're having me on?! Not so, matey. This 10 piece band (YES! 10 Piece!!) are a motley crew based in Edinburgh and via a community (Is that Care in the Community? - Ed.) workshop worked out a few new South American rythms for a selection of 'classic' Punk covers that include: Crass' 'Do they owe us a living?', Jilted John's... Er.. 'Jilted John', Teenage Kicks, Pretty Vacant, Oh Bondage Up Yours, Should I Stay or Should I go... Etc. Anybody who's read my columns for Control! in the past will know my love for cover versions! Bastard things, I fuckin' hate them!! Only two reasons ever for a cover version - as a live end of set filler for new bands or an album filler if you can do it better or substantially different than the original version: Now I'm not 100% sure about Bloco Vomit actually bettering any of the originals, but they're different that's for sure!! The Brazillian, Skanky, Festival feel dished out by this band works surprisingly well, and whilst I honestly expected to hate this and be able to give it a pounding, I can't cos it's almost classic!! It's got to have a 70% rating as it's just so damn bizzare - it's actually good!!
The Original Sin, Gent, Belgium
At first sight it sounds quite stupid and quite impossible to mix two genres which have nothing in common (that's punk and the Brazilian rhythms of samba_ but it has such a big effect on your ears that you are wondering why it took so long before someone took the decision to actually do it! On their debut album Bloco Vomit have chosen some punk-hymns and U.S. new wave tracks to transform it in a very unique style... The drums have a very rhythmic role, a bit similar to what Les Tamboures Du Bronx did and then the real carnival can start! The choice from covers goes from Pretty Vacant, Teenage Kicks, Police and Thieves... Don't shake your head by saying you've heard them already 10,000 times before...in fact you did, but never in such a way!!! There are many faves on it, but the cover from Metal Postcard by Siouxsie and the Banshees is like that song covered by The Creatures! (Siouxsie's other band)... Of course they're totally crazy and their life is just one big party...but what a party it is!!!
Pop Culture Detox
With a band name like, Bloco Vomit, I didn't really know what to expect. This album covers the likes of Jonathan Richman, Crass, The Sex Pistols, The Clash, and Siouxsie and the Banshees. For the most part, it is punk and indierock. The album lists 10 people in this band. Absolutely amazing! Pretty eclectic, too. They sound like they have their act together, though. With so many people in the band and at least half of them providing vocals at one time or another, it can be quite an effort coordinating everything, I can imagine. Bloco Vomit is from Scotland, but I can easily picture them gaining fans from the indierockers of Olympia, Washington to the punks of the UK.
If you get the chance to hear this CD, be prepared for some of the most unusual interpretation of punk rock ever heard. Bloco Vomit call themselves Samba Punk, meaning you'll be hearing punk rock tunes played to the sound of Brazilian drums. This CD is mostly old 70's punk songs redone in this new samba-punk style. If you really like drums and percussion, you'll probably enjoy this one. Plus, having both male and female vocals definitely adds a bit of a new twist, especially on songs like "Teenage Kicks". Other highlights on this CD are "Jilted John", "Pretty Vacant" (Sex Pistols), "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" (The Clash), and "Roadrunner" (Modern Lovers). You may think of this as a novelty, but it's actually quite well-played and probably a real hoot to see live.
The Suffragette Number 10
The technical term for this latest mutation of punk is called 'Samba Punk', but I don't think it'll catch on somehow. Maybe it'll be a big hit in the Brazilian ghettos, but they won't wanna hear yet another 'Do they owe us a living' cos they already know that! I was a bit unhappy they didn't do a DISCHARGE cover that would have been fun. Esther one of the 4 vocalists made me laugh on their version of the BANSHEES 'Metal Postcard', a sort of Nina Hagen influenced operatic shriek. They do a couple of other traditional tracks which would probably mean fuck all even if I could pronounce the titles. I'd say this is just another innovation of punk rock and why not? Cos we are constantly told there ain't no perimeters in this scene but I get the sneaky feeling this is done by a gang of bored students for novelty aspect only and is [WORTH A LISTEN] just to hear 'Oh Bondage Up Yours'.
Peter Don't Care
Edinburgh's Bloco Vomit are a lucky bunch of bastards. Not only have they toured Europe, but they've even played in Brazil and been on TV. I guess from that they must be hard working, and if that's the case then I guess they deserve it. This, their debut CD, was released on their own label (X Creature Productions) in mid 98.
The album consists of punk/new wave covers from 1976-1979, fused with South American rhythms - the band describe themselves as samba punk. I like both those styles anyway, so a band combining the two sounded interesting to me. On the whole the sound works really well and produces some great interpretations of classic tracks, though it's a bit rough around the edges (that's the way punk is meant to be isn't it?). It doesn't all work though - Pretty Vacant for example is a bit devoid of energy and interest. Tracks which do work include Jilted John, Police And Thieves, Oh Bondage, Up Yours! and Teenage Kicks. If you take the whole album as an experiment, I'd have to say that it works sometimes and fails others.
The production could be improved a great deal, some of the drums for example just boom far too much, but in general it doesn't matter too much due to the style of music. I'd love to see these guys live, I think it'd be a great atmosphere and a lot less restrictive than this CD.
Conveniently launched on the 10th June, same day as the Scotland vs. Brazil World cup kick-off, this album principally features cover versions of old punk records, but with a twist, or should that be sashay, as they're all done in a samba-styleee. So that's how we end up with something which falls between 'odd' and 'weird', old favourites from all ends of the punk spectrum, from Crass to Jilted John, from the Pistols to the Undertones. Some things work better than others, 'Should I Stay or Should I Go' comes across like the Clash backed by the drummers of Burundi, Pretty Vacant pounds away perhaps faster than the original, but with an extra rhythm that makes you want to stop pogoing and form a conga. Other songs which work best are Police and Thieves, perhaps unsurprisingly as it's reggae already, even how the Clash did it, and also Mitageisen. In footballing terms it's like Renaldo's tricky footwork being clattered by a Colin Hendry tackle - samba rhythm clashing, with the, er, determination of the British punk scene. A marriage made in heaven or hell? A bit of both really, but punk was never supposed to be nice.
Every now and then a band comes around with some funky beats, but this is too funky. I can't describe it. I like it, I hate it, it's confusing to me. Track #1 is a song that throws you off, you need five legs to dance to it. On the other hand track #2, "Jilted John" sounds like a lot of fun to dance to. All these songs are not Bloco Vomit original songs. They have taken old songs and set them to samba drums and horns. Track #3 is cool and #4 gives us that cool reggae type of feeling.
These guys are very talented and I'm sure they'll last for a while or maybe until eternity. Their music is different and punkish, but it's like certain foods; it's an acquired taste. If you're into something different try this CD, it's very interesting! From the guitars to the drums onto the horns, it's arranged perfectly. Like I said, I like it and I hate it. That's a good sign because no CD has ever made me feel this way. Especially when I heard track #10, "Should I Stay or Should I Go," which was originally done by the Clash. Bloco Vomit put horns and samba drum beats to it and it sounds great. I'm always open minded to new and different ideas and Bloco Punk are onto something. I don't know what, but they're onto something. It might catch on. Who knows maybe Mexican newwave next? We'll see soon. Later!
Felipe "The Bandit" Soto
this is a very errrrrr interesting punk covers cd they call themselves samba punk well they can im not gonna stop them basically its 12 classics brutally murdered with brazilian drums it is so cool its unbelievable amongst things here are teenage kicks, pretty vacant, should i stay or should i go and the classic jilted john or gordon is a moron as most people seem to know it by. in short if you wanna hear classic tracks with trumpets stupid squeaky voices and all that rot try this if not then steer well clear of this and it has a cool magic roundabout bit at the end of police and thieves on a trumpet (8)
LISTEN!, Edinburgh Live Music Guide
Formed at the Edinburgh Samba School in 1995, Bloco Vomit's ridiculously absurd idea of a Samba Punk band has taken them as far afield as Ireland, the Netherlands and even Brazil.
Imagine a dirty, sweaty, punk 4-piece blitzing through all the classic punk covers of the late 70s in one room, and next to that there's some Samba drummers doing their own thing regardless. Well somewhere inbetween there's two guys glueing it all together with some wonderfully off-key trumpet and sax.
There's no way in hell you can take this seriously, and if you did you'd be sorely missing the point. This is fun, and fantastically awful in a brilliantly bizarre fashion. Top Stuff.
Tall Paul Tobacco Pipe
On another day I'd probably slate this to shit because, to be honest, it sounds pretty bad. BUT, it's pretty damn original and genuinely funny with it, and it's entertained me all morning so... Anyway, here's the situation - 9 Scottish folks cover punk classics by CRASS, THE CLASH, THE UNDERTONES, X-RAY SPEX and more in Samba style with Brazilian drums! And it's fucking entertaining, especially 'Teenage Kicks' which has totally hysterical vocals. And that's about as much as I can say. Fuck ska-punk, Samba is where it's at! (MD)
PUNK & OI IN THE UK
Samba Punk !!! Novelty CD that has no novelty at all. For a start, Crass allways sounded obnoxious anyway, so the Bloco Vomit version OF 'Do they owe us a living?' could be Crass themselves. Jilted John was nver a punk song anyway. Do I need to carry on! They make a bollox of everything from The Clash to X-Ray Specs numbers. Don't waste your money, buy the origionals instead.
This is labelled 'samba punk'. When I first got it I thought it could be a good laugh, but the constant rolling drums in every song soon becomes a bit much. The drums are the only noticably samba-ish part of this, unless I'm missing something? Probably funny live, but doing a CD of cover versions (Jilted John, Pretty Vacant, blah blah) with some samba drums on just doesn't do owt for me, except bug me! 3/10
Zine of The Times
They classify themselves as punk but I'm not sure if that is the correct catagorization for this band. The vocals aren't bad but the music just didn't do a whole lot for me and the words didn't make alot of sense. Bloco Vomit....you make the call!
I got a lot of information on this band but just wasn't that impressed with them. You'll have to form your own opinion.
Do They Owe Us A Living? - This song wasn't too bad. Jilted John - This sounds very familiar...like another english band I know but can't put my finger on it. Police and Thieves - I liked the horn work on this one. Oh Bondage, Up Yours! - This song pretty much sums up what the band is trying to do with their music. This CD is recorded with pretty good quality and the production is pretty good as well. I didn't really care for this band but you will have to form your own opinion. It just didn't seem like they put that much thought into their music. If you like punk music, you just might like Bloco Vomit.
Scotland on Sunday
Subtitled Samba Punk, although there's precious little sign of the seductive rhythms of the Copacabana on display here. Instead we get a strangely reverent collection of crudely-produced cover versions of punk classics (Jilted John, the Undertones, Clash, Pistols, the usual suspects). What's the point, you might ask, and you'd be right. They're from Edinburgh, and I'd be prepared to bet they're students.
The List (Scottish Events Magazine)
Nine out of ten people would dismiss these twelve cover versions of punk/new wave standards ('Jilted John', 'Pretty Vacant', 'Roadrunner' etc) as utter shite. Little more than ropey re-writes of twenty-year-old songs performed badly by people old enough to know better, this album boasts one gimmick: an alleged slight samba influence. But then let's not be too po-faced. Bloco Vomit have an evident and obvious sense of humour, it's just that the only one to share it will be the pissed-up punk lag who has still to be told that the punk wars are over. Guaranteed to be a huge hit at this summer's Punks' Picnic, God bless 'em.
No. This can't be happening. If you can read past the bit where I say this is an album of punk classics played in a 'samba punk' style, then you know what it was like to try to listen on after the opening massacre of 'Do They Owe Us A Living?' which manages to be more crass than Crass ever were.
Oh well. I suppose it had to happen. Someone had to make the connection between the punk 'anyone can do it' philosophy and the samba 'everyone can do it, preferably at the same time' philosophy. Trouble is, you need a lot of people with a sense of rhythm and a good recording to make samba work, and those elements are rarely if ever present in punk. The rhythmic interplay (reviewer collapses with hysterical laughter and is hospitalised with kidney pains for two days before continuing sentence) does get going, almost, on 'Police and Thieves,' and then quite definitely on 'Metal Postcard.' Then it collapses again on 'Oh Bondage, Up Yours!' which is saved only by a chaotic saxophone which strives to rise above the care-in-the-community backing, and a vocal which suggests a more convincing link between punk and blues. In fact, the best elements of this album are not the percussive ones, but the vocals, trumpet and saxophone, which veer dangerously close to listenable a fair percentage of the time. Overall though, like most novelty albums, this is to be endured rather than enjoyed.
New Musical Express
Lamentably undeterred by their failure to master the basics of punk rock or samba, self-confessed '40-year-old cross-dressing accountants' BLOCO VOMIT have ploughed on with their groundbreaking fusion of the two musical forms. NEVER MIND THE BOSSA NOVA HERE'S BLOCO VOMIT (X Creature Productions) sounds uncannily like a bad punk band with a cowbell covering 'Pretty Vacant' and 'Oh Bondage Up Yours!'. What it lacks in musicianly competence, though, is more than made up for by its value to anthropogoists (sic) as a piece of compelling evidence against Darwinism. (4).
It sounded as bad as Stockhausen
Rodger Kibble, ex-member of BLOCO VOMIT (played one gig)
"I tried to donate it to the Oxfam shop, but they threatened to call the police"
Ken Cox, ex-mestre of the Edinburgh Samba School
"Bloco Vomit play the best maracatu in Europe"