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Afrika Korps - Music To Kill By

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THE AFRIKA KORPS Music to Kill By (Gulcher Records)

"This merger of The Slickee Boys, The Gizmos, The Look, The Teenage Boys, O. Rex, and The Kaiser's Kittens has thrown up (how punky!) the best album of the year. Twenty-two (yes! 22!) songs about all the things that bother you--your complexion . . . your boys . . . your mental health . . . and your girls. Every gem is short and sweet . . . each one a nursery rhyme that's been sneaking looks at teen magazines . . . pure, unsullied, untouched by recording contract rock and roll. Every verse is a reprise, every song a chrous with a harmonious soundmix nothing like the usual Heavy Metal row most 'punks' employ. Despite their threats about slapping your pretty face and ripping your pretty lace, they're sweet kids. Real innocence always tries to be tough." --Julie Burchill, New Musical Express, 3 December 1977. Back in 1973, teenage fanzine writer Ken Highland first traveled from his small-town home in upstate New York to Brooklyn, New York, to jam with pen-pal Solomon Gruberger and his younger brother Jay in their living-room rock band O. Rex. Three years later, in early '76, Ken recorded the first infamous Gizmos EP in Bloomington, Indiana--and then joined the United States Marine Corps! Finding himself stationed in Maryland, near Washington, D.C., he quickly found his way into the burgeoning D.C. punk scene. He became friends with the Slickee Boys, and began writing songs on guard duty. Some of these became later Gizmos tunes, but the main project was a new band with the O. Rex brothers called The Afrika Korps. With help from Slickee Boys Kim Kane and Martha Hull, and the addition of multi-talented drummer Ken Kaiser, they recorded the music on this LP in the first few months of 1977. The recordings became free-for-all punk-rock "super sessions"--with various other Slickee Boys members, D.C. scenesters, rock writers, etc. joining in on the fun. The resulting LP still stands as one of the most spontaneous and least trendy things to come out of the early Amerikan punk scene. This CD includes the classick LP plus eight studio outtakes and four live tracks, and comes with a 16-page booklet featuring mostly unpublished photos and a detailed history of the Afrika Korps.

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