Da Slyme Release
Da Slyme, Newfoundland's first (and one of Canada's first) punk bands, returns with a vengeance
Date: June 1, 1999
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada, June 1, 1999, SP -- "Oh, no, not again!" The refrain is echoing throughout the music world this week as news leaks out that Da Slyme, one of Canada's premiere punk bands, has released its latest recording.
Titled The 20 Year Scam, the cd is the first recording from the Newfoundland punkers since their self-titled, double album was released on vinyl in 1980. "We didn't want to saturate the market," said Colonel Lou N. Tarprize, the band's manager. The cd -- Da Slyme's first foray into digital -- features all new recordings of 22 mostly new songs with themes ranging from biting political and social commentary (Right Wing Power, Running From the Weapons of War, Fail-Safe Video Zone) to keen self analysis (No Talent, Piss-Eyed Sleazoid, Low Life Scum, I Hate My Job) to fun romps through the absurd and bizarre (Truck Stop Nun, Margaret Thatcher for Possum Queen, Kickin' 'til I Die).
The music is a melange of punk, ska, reggae and heavy metal all served up in the patented wall-of-noise production technique mastered by Da Slyme back in the late 1970s. "It's sort of a Ramones meet Roxy Music meet Lou Reed meets Slim Whitman kind of thing," said Col. Tarprize.
Released on the independent Loo Productions label, Da Slyme - The 20 Year Scam, was years in the making. "Actually, the boys have been talking about this since their reunion in 1989 (The Skeletons Out of the Closet Tour)," said Tarprize.
In early 1993 Da Slyme was profiled in the excellent music compendium Smash the State: A Discography of Canadian Punk by Frank Manley of Montreal. Recently several songs from the original Da Slyme album were re-issued on Smash The State III, Manley's latest recorded compilation of important Canadian punk music. Da Slyme's One Chord Punk Rock Song was re-released on a single by a Vancouver record company also in 1998 and in the same year the Von Zippers from Calgary covered Da Slyme's song Truck Stop Nun on the Canadian punk compilation cd, Oh Canaduh. Truck Stop Nun was also covered by the band Love Blister on the CBC Radio program, The Great Eastern, which is broadcast nationally in Canada. Then in February of 1999 a major profile of Da Slyme and its music was featured on RadioSonic (CBC Radio Two) across Canada.
Col. Tarprize said all this attention has turned into a deluge of renewed interest in Da Slyme. "Record collectors and music distributers from the United States, Italy, Germany, elsewhere in Europe, New Zealand, Singapore and Canada have been inquiring about the cd and the original 1980 double lp," he said.
But why is there so much interest in this relatively obscure band from relatively obscure, at least for the music business, Newfoundland? Col. Tarprize puts it down to attitude, originality and promotion. "Da Slyme always did things Da Slyme way. It was the first punk band in Newfoundland and one of the first in Canada. It was the first Canadian punk band to release a double album at a time when an independent recording of any kind was difficult and expensive. The lads' songs are original, unique, loud, challenging, funny, thought-provoking, noisy. They record themselves. They produce themselves. They package and promote themselves. It comes down to the fact that thee is no other band in the world like Da Slyme!"
Da Slyme is planning a special launch event for The 20 Year Scam in St. John's, Newfoundland, in July. "Da Slyme will play, which will be the band's first live performance in 10 years," said Col. Tarprize. "We'll be showing some of the over 12 hours of video we shot of the band dating back to 1979." The launch, a Happy Hour with Da Slyme, is open to the public. It is scheduled from 4-8 p.m., Saturday, July 3, at Calio's on Water Street.
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