- Beavis Having Rad Times means that this CD's purchase was directly or indirectly influenced by the Beavis & Butthead television show
* - Asterisk means I already had a good mp3 copy of this album, but threw up a few words anyway in the name of having an internet-based chronicle of all my legally-purchased, store-bought music
Pain - Midgets With Guns (1996, Goggins Records) - For the record, this is absolutely not the death metal band Pain, with the dude from Hypocrisy. It's the *original* Pain, who played my little town a couple times in the late 90s. To categorize this, most people seem to describe them as being a ska band, which is weird, because ska never enters into the process. I guess the main basis for this is punk rock of a poppy variety, but with a horn section and keyboards, and man, this is some nerd shit right here, but in a good way? Like if we lived in a world where nerds ran free, this would be their theme music. But alas, modern times happened, and the Classical Nerd who wears thick glasses and cares about science has been replaced with either the Big Bang Theory "Geek Culture" nerd, who's basically just a regular person who likes extremely popular entertainment franchises, but tries to justify it as being part of some underground movement, or the internet-poisoned video game dork who decided that they hated women so much that it justified going full Nazi. But if I had gone to college to learn animation, instead of never choosing a major and just dropping out, my first project would have been trying to make a video for "Chuck Al Hashib."
Pain - Wonderful Beef (1997, Goggins Records) - This is just about a year later than Midgets With Guns, so it makes sense that it sounds more or less the same as that one. Honeslty I think I liked the other one better, but it's not like this is awful or anything, like it wasn't the ReLoad of Pain. Still, "The Bottleorcket War" was a mixed tape repeat offender for me back in the day, and the cover of this is mking me really want some little broccolis and baby corns, but I still have no decide to break edge foodwise for Chinese Buffet style sliced beef. Even if it is apparently wonderful.
Pantera - Cowboys From Hell (1990, Atco) - Look, I know I'm the annoying Exhorder Internet Guy, but it's been like twenty years now, and it's time to just admit that the first couple post-glam period Pantera albums were completely goddang awesome. This kind of blindsided the regular folks of the non-underground metal world, and I'm sure this ain't shit compared to Hellhammer or whatever, but this blew the minds of people whose prior ideas of metal just barely extended past Britny Fox or whatever. I think this was the heaviest band I had ever heard until the fateful day when my brother got a cassette copy of Arise by Sepultura. There were still some traces of the secret old Pantera here, as Phil Anselmo hadn't destroyed his voice with THE DRUGS yet, so he hits a few big high notes, and it just sounds really out of place when he does it. Also, I have to confess that I never really got into "Cemetery Gates," because that weird squealy main guitar riff is annoying as hell. Otherwise though, good.
Pantera - Vulgar Display of Power (1992, Atco) - So this was and remains the ultimate Pantera album, just a complete A-Number-One superlative, and I think stuff like this was what tricked us into thinking the 1990s would be The Metal Decade. We had huge "new" bands like Pantera and Death Angel, we had Beavis and Butthead, Metallica was the world's biggest band, and grunge was still considered to be at least 50% metal, so surely, it would gateway drug a lot of people in, right? Ah, the world is terrible, and we'll all be dead soon. But yeah, this deserves all the praise people give it, and it's a shame that this band and the entire world around it fell apart soon afterward.
Pantera - Far Beyond Driven (1994, Eastwest) - Welp. For most people, this is just as good or even better than Vulgar Display of Power was, but outside of a couple songs, I never have liked this. This was the point where Phil Anselmo's voice was pretty much gone, so he just kinda piggy-squealed all the time to compensate, and I'm pretty sure Down was happening around this point, so Pantera was becoming his day job that he didn't care about anymore. And while it's not to the extent that The Great Southern Trendkill was, Pantera's transition from a good time rockin' version of Exhorder to a good time rockin' version of Acid Bath was an awkward and terrible one. I can't say it's worthless as long as stuff like "I'm Broken" is there, but this about 75% sucks, y'all.
Pearl Jam - Vs. (1993, Epic) - Looking at this now, it's weird that I own this one instead of Ten as my one Pearl Jam CD, but also not weird, because this was on sale for $5 and I think Ten still costs real money. But anyway, it's always seemed improbable that Pearl Jam could remain so huge to this day, because when this came out, all anyone could think was how big a step down from the first one it was, and by the time Vitalogy came out, no one in my direct sphere of influence seemed to give a crap about them anymore. Yet somehow, they've sold millions of records on a regular basis for like twenty years and have their own radio station now, even though no one's really seemed to care about them the entire time. Pearl Jam was the original Nickelback.
*Pentagram - Relentless (1985, Pentagram Records - Mine is the '93 Peaceville version) - Ohhhh maaaaaan, this is the besssssst. It's spooky and sinister and the guitars sound like buzz saws, and it makes me want to go conduct Satanic rituals with my 1985 D&D friends, except we're not doing anything to animals, because I love them animals. I think my first brush with Pentagram was a review of Be Forewarned in some weird little pop music magazine called "Huh" that my brother had a subscription to, (whose whole gimmick was that every issue came with a compilation Cd in a genre of your choosing, which is where I first realized Dismember was awesome) and I just kinda skimmed past it, all "oh, they've been around since the early 70s, but this is only their second album? Must suck then." In hindsight, I should have hunted down some mail-order path to buying that album and dedicated my life to Pentagram, which probably would've mostly entailed occasionally mailing Bobby Liebling $20 for crack money.
*Pentagram - First Daze Here: The Vintage Collection (2001, Relapse) - This is a whole bunch of stuff from Liebling's bottomless stash of demos and rehearsals and other assorted recordings of Pentagram in the 70s, and it's the best. It's like Black Sabbath, if Black Sabbath was even more tripped-out and occasionally had a habit of veering off into Rolling Stones territory. It sounds like a completely different band that some of the later stuff, but that's because it literally is a different band with just the same singer, which will do that, I guess.
Pezz - One Last Look... (1997, BYO) - This was another one of the bands that played the little local shows, but with the possible exception of Deerhoof, were probably the biggest. I can't confirm this, but I will say that they're the only band from the little Cleveland shows whose CDs I've ever found for sale in stores at a later date. That being said, I just never got into this, and I honestly do not even remember what it sounds like. I even have a split single of their somewhere around here with a song I seemed to really like live, and I can't even remember what it sounds like. Why am I bothering to type any of this? Why are you even reading it? Ha ha, loser.
The Pissants - Nothing Looks Better Everyday (1999, Sour Records) - Oh man this was one of the best things in my awful life in 1999. I don't remember how I first found out about this band, like it was some weird roundabout way via Ye Olde Tyme Geocities Guestbookes, and I sent them ten bucks for the CD, and it was the best thing ever. This is like if you took a regular late 90s punk record, sped it up to about double speed without making it all squeaky, and then made the drummer go fucking insane. This is like the death metal version of pop punk or something other nonsense. I just remember loving this so much and being so excited for them to put out more records, but it just never happened. Like they had anno9unced a split with some band called the Malefactors, and it got delayed for some reason, and I tried to buy a Malefactors Cd and they stole my money, and then the drummer broke his back or something and had to quit, and then they changed the band's name to Save Yourself, and then just nothing. There seems to be an insanely small amount of information about these dudes online today, and I have jealously protected the safety of this compact disk, because I know it is legitimately irreplacable. That being said, some amazing person apparently uploaded this to Soundcloud, and y'all should go check this out before Soundcloud goes out of business.
Primus - They Can't All Be Zingers (2006, Interscope) - As you might have guessed, I am a sad shell of a man who has become consumed by nostalgia for the early 1990s. And Primus is the ultimate and definitive Early 1990s Band, so it seems like I would like them more. I mean, they're fine, but this is a greatest hits style compilation, and it's probably all the Primus I'll ever need. I do actually have a cassette copy of Pork Soda somewhere, but all I did with that was listen to "My Name is Mud" over and over, so this Cd has rendered that tape utterly useless for me now. Come to think of it, that's mostly all I've ever done with this Cd, too.
Prong - Primitive Origins (1987, Southern Records) - This was weird to first listen to almost twenty years after the fact, because even before becoming a shitty industrial band, Prong was always at least kind of "alternative" sounding. So then you go back to the 80s, and this is pretty much kind of crossover-ish thrash metal. And it's kind of in that weird place that a lot of lower-tier thrash is, where you listen to it, and it's amazing and you love every second of it, but then, the record ends, and you can't remember anything specific about it. So I guess to get the full enjoyment out of this CD, you have to just constantly listen to it for the rest of your life, lest it be immediately forgotten. Or just go buy a copy of Prove You Wrong.
Prong - The Peel Session EP (1989 Strange Fruit Records) - This a little EP of stuff Prong did for the John Peel radio show over in England, and it's two songs from Primitive Origins, plus two songs from Force Fed, and it's similarly a contradictory mix of amazing and forgettable. Th physical Cd is neat, because instead of regular clear plastic, it's done on kind of a day-glo green plastic, and I wonder why no one seems to do that more often. Also, the John Peel Show must have been utterly bonkers, because the list of other artists with CDs in the series include stuff from The Smiths and New Order to Napalm Death and Extreme Noise Terror.
Prong - Prove You Wrong (1991, Epic) - This is Prong in full alternametal mode, and it's probably the point when most people who care about Prong first heard of them. And it's one of those CDs that I probably like the idea of better than the actual music inside, because it takes me back to that same time and place of staying up late and eating Pizza Hut and sorting football cards while someone plays Phantasy Star on the Sega Master System. Honestly, it's got a couple huge songs, and the rest is pleasant, but forgettable. This is a recurring theme for Prong albums, at least until Rude Awakening came out, and they dropped the "pleasant" half of that.
Prong - Cleansing (1994, Epic) - Man, for about 25 minutes, this album rules. "Another Worldly Device," "Whose Fist is This Anyway?," "snap Your Fingers, Snap You Neck," and "Broken Peace" are four of the best songs they ever did, and the other song in that half of the album isn't bad enough to drag things down. After that, though, it just dies a horrible death. If only the EP had been more of a fashionable thing to do, this could have been legendary. As it is, it's still not bad, but I have no use for over half of it. Also, there's a variation of the Prong logo inside that looks way too much like a swastika, and I really hope that was an accident.
Purged - Form of Release (1997, Metal Blade) - This is an
Australian thrash metal band that popped up on a Metal Blade
compilation Cd, followed by popping up on a Metal Blade website
99-cent sale, so why not? And man, this has some of the worst
late-90s indie release design possible. Everything is just bad
computer graphics and barely-readable fonts, and the whole thing
stinks of someone who was way too excited about their first Windows
95 PC. Music-wise, this is alright, even if there's not really
anything new or exciting (i mean, new and exciting for 1997, it's
all old now) here, and the singer is kind of the generic post-grunge/post-Pantera
"yyyyeeeaaaarrrr" guy. Like the singing is bad, and I mean, like
Five Finger Death Punch bad. Which is not to say that this is as as
bad as that band, it's at least four-billion times better. A goddamn
shame that Purged faded into obscurity like a faded memory of a
mystery of a rumor of a careless whisper of a forgotten popcorn
fart, while Five Finger Death Punch will now and forever be the
official band of the sketchy 41-year-old divorcee in a
vomit-encrusted "Keep Calm and Chive On" shirt who's getting a
little creepy with some fourteen year old girls in the bathroom line
at the big rock show. Fuck Five Finger Death Punch, for real. Also,
the "special thanks" section of the liner notes to this include "God
(not!)" in them, and that's the edgiest thing I've ever seen, holy