state - The I-94 Bar

Apa State Mental - Apa State Mental (The Mighty Kong)

apastatementalGothenburg isn't snowed-in for 11 months of the year but I have it on good authority that it gets pretty grey and grim for long chunks of time. It's a nice place but it's no Costa Rica, meteorologically speaking. Plus, beer is expensive. So what can a poor boy do but play in a (punk) rock and roll band? Apa State Mental obviously subscribe to that view - and play their music with enough energy to melt a medium-sized glacier.

Apa Valley - Apa State Mental (The Almighty Kong)

apa-valleyLet's be blunt: The problem with being simplistic and sticking to a formula is that you can disappear up your own arse after a while. Sweden's Apa State Mental know this only too well and deftly manage to sidestep that problem by never sitting still and, er, probing new areas.

I’m Walkin’ b/w Hey Señorita - The Beatpack (State Records)

im-walkinMedway beat band god Billy Childish must have sore armpits with the number of bands said to have been taken under his wing. The Beatpack are another, active in their first life from 1987-91 and assisted with recording of an EP and an LP (on the esteemed Screaming Apple) back in the day by none other than Mr Childish.

Look Back and Laugh b/w Tripwire - Suzi Chunk (State Records)

Ichunk-coverf it’s a single of ‘60s sounds it makes perfect sense for it to be in mono. Suzi Chunk is a Welsh singer fronting a well-mannered band called Groovy Uncle and singing beat pop. If she was any more authentic her name would be Dusty Springfield.

The Reunited Heavy Metal States of Apa State Mental - Apa State Mental (The Almighty Kong)

apastatemental2The genius of this Malmo, Sweden, band is in their artfully sly dumbness. They might want you to think they have the collective I.Q. of a Miss Universe entrant dealing with 'open other end' on both extremities of a bottle, but their brief and weirdly bent tunes (average duration: under two minutes) hide knowing smiles that only strong anti-depressants and regular cognitive therapy from highly-trained medical professionals can bring.

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