Max the Axe has made an appearance on our site before with the stellar album ‘Status Electric’. They are back but this time around we only get a 3 song E.P. which is fine. I will take what I can get. I want to thank Mike Ladano for making sure I received a copy as he knows I enjoyed the last one.
Max the Axe are a Canadian band out of Kitchener, Ontario (yeah, I don’t know where that is either). It is made up of the following members…
- Mike “Max” Koutis – guitar
- Eric Litwiller – vocals
- Dave Haslam – drums
- Mike “Mitch” Mitchell on bass
You probably know Eric Litwiller if you watch The LeBrain Train as he is Uncle Meat. I have been on the show with him and he is a great guy so it is cool to say I know someone in the band. Before we get in the album, what did I say about the last album? I think it was this…“The songs are filled with some gritty, distorted guitars and the lyrics at times have a slight comedic flare which makes me think that this band is the bastard child of Black Sabbath and Barenaked Ladies.” This time around, we get something totally different. I feel a little more rawness and punk attitude at times and at others a bunch of drunks having a good time…more on that later.
The CD is a 3-Song E.P. and each song is very different. First up is the racially insensitive song called “Pygmy Blow Dart”. I received a letter complaining that they prefer the term little people, but I don’t think “Little People Blow Dart” has the same impact, so fuck ’em. Keep the title the way it is. That attitude is so punk but the song also is also a straight up rocker about dope. There is a really cool bass solo by Mike that falls right before Max lays down his guitar solo. Both are sensational and totally take this song to another level. Uncle Meat’s vocals are on point and I like it a lot. He slays on this one for sure.
Next up is a cover track of Black Flag’s “Thirsty and Miserable” and takes the punk sound to a whole new level. The bass on this is also great, it is distorted and totally bad ass. The guitar has that same grit and Eric goes all nasty and dirty with the vocals to give the song that needed attitude. Max lays down another blistering solo and Dave’s drum fills are fast and furious. A great cover and maybe I need to add this one to The Original Vs. The Cover Series we do here on the site. Might be close!!!
The final track is the song “Oktoberfest Cheer” which celebrates the drinking festival that comes around this time every year. I, personally, am not a drinker so I look forward to this holiday about as much as I enjoy a good colonoscopy. Yeah, not a whole lot. But after listening to this song, I think I could really use a drink. This one is a fun track, thanks in large part to Catherine Thompson’s accordion playing and as a result, we get a great little polka tune. If you take if for the humor, it is a blast with lots of great cliches about drinking and the beloved German festival. This song really should only be heard when you are drunk off your ass in a bar with your mates so grab a beer and some smokes and enjoy!
There you have it. My biggest complaint is that it is too short. I want more!! Don’t know if that will happen any time soon, but we can hope! I like the rawness and go for it all attitude of the songs and the guys sounded great. I love the fact on the back cover where they tout the song was recorded in analog on one-inch tape which harkens back to the old days of rock where things just sounded better. That is the type of attitude I like in a band. Old School Rock. I will admit, I enjoyed this and probably have played it a dozen times already. I will give it a 3.5 out of 5.0 Stars with the only fault the final track as you have to be in a special mood for that or in a special state of mind. But the first two tracks are going to get constant spins here at 2 Loud 2 Old Music!!