Monday, December 15, 2008

Stompbox - Stress *plus some b-sides

I by no means feel like I'm reinventing the wheel or revealing some great secret here by posting about this band. I've seen it a couple other places (shit, their own bass player has it posted on his blog) but for me not to would be weird because this album was one of my favorites growing up and is still one I love to jam on more than an occasional basis. 

I've heard it said that they sound like "Neil Fallon fronting Helmet" and i guess for the most part this could be true. Imagine further maybe if "Inhaler"-era TAD and Page Hamilton started a band and invited early Clutch's Neil Fallon and Iron Lung of Scissorfight to trade off on vocal duties. However, unlike the other bands I've mentioned so far, Stompbox had way more of a bouncy "moshable" quality. Maybe it was that hometown Boston hardcore influence sneaking in. 

I first discovered this band on Headbanger's Ball and was instantly hooked by there ultra heavy, down right hammering, staccato groove. It also didn't hurt that I was completely stoned and their singer resembled some grungy, bellowing burn out that would always be down with "puffing a J" with ya. There was always something very tongue in cheek about this band that 
I admired. Could've been that they had songs called "Carry On My Wayward Son" and "Fool For The City" that had nothing to do with the classic rock originals. For the most part the album maintains it's heavy, head bobbing riffathon giving way to frequent melodic "grunge like" vocal tendencies. Even though Stompbox play some "lunkhead-ish" type of metal I think some real solid musicianship shines through. I remember reading the vocalist was the original choice to front Geezer Butler's GZR project. It would've been a lot cooler if he did.

Like S2R in my previous post...Stompbox was another fantastic band that was scooped up in the post-Nirvana signing frenzy, slated to be the next "Big Thing", was improperly pushed, failed to put up winning numbers and was subsequently dropped.  I spent years after trying to find anything else recorded by this band as this was there only "proper" release. 

Recently, much to my surprise, I came across the only previously read about "Travis" EP on iTunes. Even more surprisingly, through blogging around, I acquired unreleased tracks from the "Stress" recording session as well as some rare comp tracks. Most of the tracks are re-recorded songs from the "Travis" EP but there's a couple I hadn't heard along with a Gang Green cover "Alcohol" (b-side to the Halloween Day Massacre 7") and a cover of the Tree (another awesome Beantown band!) song "Question Abuse". I've compiled those plus the only un re-recorded "Travis" track "Lobotomizer" and another single b-side I had here under the fitting title "Now, What's It Worth"

As always, you can find a shit load of copies of "Stress" here for cheap or in bargain bins across America.

Here's the "No Woods" video I saw on wheeed. A lot of people feel that Disturbed ripped off the verse riff. I couldn't agree more! 

Here's a interview with the previously mentioned bass player, Patrick, telling what happened post-"Stress".


  1. It is indeed a great band, I have all of their records, I was having a hard time finding the first it was easier to buy viagra than to find that album.

  2. Nuns of Punk include Chuck Stilphen and Glen Stilphen from the Alcohol era of Gang Green and Erich Thaler from Stompbox. Chuck Stilphen is the co-writer of the punk classic "Alcohol". Chuck and Glen have also played with The Freeze, Mallet Head, Scratch, Smegma and The Nuns and Straw Dogs. 'First Nickel" is a high energy punk / metal attack with a melody. An extended release is coming soon.