I received the Snake Pit book reviewed below in June, but didn’t review it at the time because of its early August release date. Unfortunately, its envelope got buried on my messy desk. The better-late-than-never review appears below, along with another book review. My review of a new CD is sandwiched in between.
‘Manor Threat: Snake Pit Comics 2013-2015,’ Ben Snakepit (Microcosm Publishing, ☆☆☆☆☆)
This new book of daily diary comics was published on Aug. 9.
There are many happenings in Ben’s life along his wife Karen’s and his dog Peeber’s lives during the years covered by this book’s comic strips: job advancement, aging (Ben turned 41 by book’s end), home ownership (June 13, 2014), medical crises, moving to a smaller community (Manor, Texas, instead of Austin) and more. The book is dedicated to the memory of Leonard Nimoy, who died last year, and Tommy Ramone’s passing on in 2014 is also noted.
All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable, easy read!
‘The Apocalypse Blues Revue,’ The Apocalypse Blues Revue (Provogue Records, ☆☆☆1/2)
This Aug. 26 album comes from an unlikely source: the band was founded by Godsmack drummer Shannon Larkin and guitarist Tony Rombola, and features vocalist Ray “Rafer John” Cerbone and bassist Brian Carpenter. They propose to honor blues traditions while putting a new stamp on the genre.
Cerbone’s voice is Jim Morrison-esque. The guitar/bass/drum combination of the other three ABR members sounds tight, and at times modern rocky. However, a disturbing, satanic thread runs through many tunes, like the jokey “Devil Plays a Strat,” the drug-themed “Junkie Hell,” the snarky “I Think Not” or the haunting “Blue Cross,” which definitely doesn’t concern insurance.
Broad-minded blues fans may enjoy this one.
‘Punk Rock Entrepreneur: Running A Business Without Losing Your Values,’ Caroline Moore (Microcosm Publishing, ☆☆☆☆)
This new book by Caroline Moore spotlights the things she has overcome in building her own business the DIY way. She has faced formidable challenges, such as Lime Disease; but because she hasn’t bailed or said no at the first sign of trouble, she has succeeded. The book’s small size belies its big truths, and Caroline’s writing/drawing styles carry it along, with occasional paragraphs from contributing friends.
I have long known that bands/artists/business owners who devote maximum time/effort to what may be a hobby to others are the ones who succeed. Caroline’s chapters (“Have Some Audacity” and more) illustrate what people have to go through to find success in their chosen business, including early failures. Young readers, take note, older folks may also find the book worthwhile.
Ricky Flake, a former punk rocker and current music fan, lives in Biloxi. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org