Thursday, June 10, 2004


RIFLE SPORT

Image courtesy TCpunk.com


Rifle Sport White Made in France Ruthless Records (1987) Let's play Punk Jeopardy! Answer: This is what happens if you cross mid 80's "no rules" Husker Du/ 'Mats/Soul Asylum Minneapolis with bottom heavy Naked Raygun / Effigies / Big Black-style mid-80's Chicago rock. Question: What is Rifle Sport's White Made in France? Alternative answer: It's as if Mission of Burma never heard of Iggy (tip to Byron Coley). Sporting (finally) a stable line-up and working with Iain Burgess, this is among their best recorded output. Known for excellent live shows and one of the most competent rhythm section (Flour and Todd Trainer) of the '80s, Rifle Sport is the band that never really broke up - they just stopped playing one day.

And unlike Burma, there's apparently little hope of them getting back together. Guitarist Gerard Boissey who posts as Zom-Zom at TC Punk says that their singer J. Christopher has no interest in getting back together. That hasn't stopped him from forming his own band (and website wherein he reminisces about his professional wrestling mom and dad). Todd Trainer plays with Albini's band Shellac and his own project,Brick Layer Cake, while Flour plays bass for Cake and has released some of his own records as Flour on Touch and Go.

"Certain Situations" and "Bloodline" best showcase their song-writing (and Boissey's awesome guitar sound) and their thumping tight drums and bass undertow, respectively. Don't try understanding the lyrics -- as someone wrote elsewhere, they might as well be singing in Japanese. About the only song I understand (and I'm admittedly bad in understanding lyrics) is "Liquid" which appears to be about some guy at a redneck bar turning down a barfly slut in favor of drinking and shooting pool with the guys... so I suspect allot of the songs like "Experience the Pain" and "King of Trash" are along the same lines of the Pigfuck (Chuck Eddy's phrase) style in vogue at the time (see Killdozer, et. al.). Still, they don't seem to be doctrinaire pigfuckers as there are just as many songs that go the other way ("Blackbird", "Ocean Wind") just as they aren't doctrinaire hardcore babies. Iain "Bulldozer/All Rise" Burgess produces and adds his dynamic sound.

Check out Gerard's small Rifle Sport page (featuring the picture from the back of White) and a bonus MP3 from 1990. Here's an interview with Gerard from 2002.

This is a lovely snow white vinyl pressing but characterized by some clicks on some tracks and one track that has a skip. I've heard that usually colored vinyl isn't the best vinyl for recordings but it sure looks cool.

Certain Situations
Bloodline

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm expecting you to post some Breaking Circus next.

Jim H said...

I do have some breaking circus but it's not in the current box i'm going through. i'll keep an eye out for it -- great band.

zom said...

Hey, nice to see some commentary on Rifle Sport.

A few corrections though please, One thing is that it looks like we'll be playing a one-time reunion show the night before Thanksgiving in our favourite Seventh Street Entry club in Minneapolis. Also playing will be my current band Kontrol Panel http://www.kontrolpanel.com, Brick Layer Cake, Flour, and Arcwelder.

The picture you are using has the "other" guitarist pictured in it, the year that I wasn't in the band. He doesn't appear on any of the albums. Flour has been playing solo for the past few years and only appears on one Brick Layer Cake track. BLC has no bass player and never has. I have been playing with Todd and BLC for about ten years now, and appear on two of the albums. I played a BLC show with him a couple of months ago and will be doing some more.

As for coloured vinyl skipping, I don't believe that since the actual colour of vinyl is clear. The black was added to make it appear like the old 78s, so colouring shouldn't matter.

But again, thanks for caring about an old fairly obscure band. We had a lot of fun doing it and we are all still good friends and still very active in music and other things.

Cheers,

zom-zom

zom said...

Hey, nice to see some commentary on Rifle Sport.

A few corrections though please, One thing is that it looks like we'll be playing a one-time reunion show the night before Thanksgiving in our favourite Seventh Street Entry club in Minneapolis. Also playing will be my current band Kontrol Panel http://www.kontrolpanel.com, Brick Layer Cake, Flour, and Arcwelder.

The picture you are using has the "other" guitarist pictured in it, the year that I wasn't in the band. He doesn't appear on any of the albums. Flour has been playing solo for the past few years and only appears on one Brick Layer Cake track. BLC has no bass player and never has. I have been playing with Todd and BLC for about ten years now, and appear on two of the albums. I played a BLC show with him a couple of months ago and will be doing some more.

As for coloured vinyl skipping, I don't believe that since the actual colour of vinyl is clear. The black was added to make it appear like the old 78s, so colouring shouldn't matter.

But again, thanks for caring about an old fairly obscure band. We had a lot of fun doing it and we are all still good friends and still very active in music and other things.

Cheers,

zom-zom

Judge said...

Holy cats...if you're thinking of posting some Breaking Circus, I'm running a risk of soiling myself. I keep sitting and thinking about Smoker's Paradise...The Hammer Party...

Aah, the great old days. There was once a time when all I needed to be happy was a pack of Camel Lights, some Budweisers, Breaking Circus, Naked Raygun, Big Black, Husker Du, Replacements, and either some Squirrelbait or Die Kreuzen.

You would give me the ultimate Triple Dip Thrill Ride Cream Dream if you were to make Breaking Circus available...

ShockHammer 13 said...

I saw this page a few months back and was moved to turn all my Breaking Circus vinyl into MP3s. The total running time of The Very Long Fuse, The Ice Machine, and Smokers' Paradise is roughly 73 minutes. So it fits neatly onto a CD. The stuff still sounds damn good.

oakland said...

I just picked a used vinyl copy of "White" up today at the record store.

Nice site by the way.

Anonymous said...

Shockhammer or some good Samaritan, I'm having trouble locating a copy of The Very Long Fuse. Could someone give me a link for this in mp3? I was a big Burgess fan (NR) and I picked up Ice Machine in 87. I think these guys kick ass!

ShockHammer 13 said...

I'd like to help out, but I don't know the technical means of posting files here. If you want to provide an e-mail, we'll figure something out. Otherwise, I saw at least one cope of "Fuse" on gemm.com.