Monday, February 14, 2005

Review: Urinal Puck Ministries - Twisted Tales From the Fallopian Tube (2004)

Urinal Puck Ministries
Twisted Tales From the Fallopian Tube

Urinal Puck Ministries is a band name that should immediately tip you off to their style and sense of humor. Keeping that in mind, the music played by these 5 guys from Pennsylvania is quite an eclectic blend of punk, metal, and rock which reminds me a lot of bands like S.O.D. and Black Flag. What you get is a solidly entertaining mix of tongue-in-cheek lyrics, beefy guitar riffs, and angry melodies designed to get you off your ass and into the pit. If UPM stands for something, it's having a good time.

There are 14 songs on Twisted Tales From the Fallopian Tube, the band's debut release, but only one exceeds the 3-minute mark. Though this results in a less-than-30-minute listen, UPM spends the time wisely to get into your head with infectious rhythms, catchy choruses, and thrashy riffs that leave you salivating for more. The fifth track is probably the most memorable of the album, for all the previously stated reasons and more. Simply titled "Poop" (any marketing hotshot will tell you that bathroom humor always sells), the song starts off with a pretty raw riff that carries through the classic punk beat into the catchy - and how could it not be - chorus. Taken with the crude lyrics and toilet sound effects, the song is simply fun to listen to. "Mary Boy" comes in as my next favorite track, showcasing a tight guitar-driven pace and yet another catchy chorus.

It's the guitar work of Kingpin and Skeezer that really gives Twisted Tales From the Fallopian Tube life. From the very "Rock Lobster"-like opening riff on "My Reality" to the chunky, early-Metallica inspired riffs on "Personal Meat", these two guys can skillfully belt out the riffs and licks. I can only assume that Kingpin and Skeezer share the solo spotlight, since their press kit doesn't mention one over the other, so the credit has to go to both guys for some pretty nice leads and solos sprinkled throughout the disc. There's nothing overly fancy about their style, they both are simply blue-collar guitar players who dish out some ass-kickin' riffs.

In the vocal department, Skin fits the music perfectly. He was born to sing this style of music. At times sounding a bit like Henry Rollins (not the spoken word crap, though) and at others like Scott Lucas (Local H), Skin's gritty shouts evoke that sense of old school punk anger. And there is too that sense of punk anarchy here and there on Twisted Tales From the Fallopian Tube, such as the lyrical content of "Bow to the Ministry".

So who are UPM and who will want to listen to Twisted Tales From the Fallopian Tube? The answer is as broad as the influences heard in their music. If you just want some music that picks you off the floor and gets you to the pit, then this album is for you. Punk, metal, rock, it's all there. There have been other bands like Urinal Puck Ministries, but there's always room for a breath of fresh air.

Track Listing
1 Bow to the Ministry 2:30
2 My Reality 1:49
3 Mommy Can I Dance With the Devil 1:41
4 Slave to the Puck 3:21
5 Poop 2:17
6 Welcome to the Sewer 2:21
7 Mary Boy 2:23
8 Personal Meat 1:44
9 I Know Your Mother 2:24
10 Dismembered Member 2:17
11 Satans Hayride 2:13
12 Puppet 2:02
13 Clambake Spitshine 0:59
14 I'm Hungry 0:36

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