The Low Budgets -- Go Bargain Hunting With the Low Budgets

Now, this is a fun record. Led by Joe Genaro (perhaps better known as the Dead Milkmen's Joe Jack Talcum), the Low Budgets are an aptly named (seriously, the sleeve for this 7" looks like it was made on a computer from 1984, complete with pathetic clip art) group of garage-tinged pop-punkers. If you were not aware of Genaro's presence in the band, you'd probably assume, as I initially did, that the Low Budgets were a bunch of high school or college kids who scraped just enough cash together to put out a bit of vinyl. Then again, you really can't judge a record by its cover...

Although the record is largely a hard-driving punk disk, the Low Budgets add a vintage organ to the mix, giving "Bargain Hunting" just enough late sixties flavor to what would otherwise be a fairly pedestrian (albeit, very tightly performed) bit of straightforward punk. The little dashes of ska, surf, garage, and psychedelia, though, make "Go Bargain Hunting" well worth a listen.

Track Listing:

Track 1. "SNAFU." A bit on the generic side, "SNAFU" is the least memorable song on the record. Not that it's bad . . . it just sounds like a lot of other stuff out there.

Track 2. "Hey Creator." Opening with a riff reminiscent of the one upon which the Animals' "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" is built, "Hey Creater" quickly shifts gear into a totally skankable bit of pseudo ska just in time for Joe's repeated cry of "you're a skank!" Then it becomes another pop-punk tune. In other words, "Hey Creator" is a pretty solid introduction to the sort of pastiche-ridden music for which the Low Budgets should be praised.

Track 3. "Settle Down." This sounds like someone fed Iron Butterfly's opening band to Walk Together, Rock Together-era 7 Seconds.

Track 4. "Born Before the Internet." Saving the best for last, the Low Budgets deliver a delightful mix of punk, reggae, garage, and hardcore to close out the disk.


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