Alright kids, here it is! Brand new daily diary comics by both Ben Snakepit and myself chronicling each of our lives from October through December, 2013. That's FIFTY PAGES of BRAND NEW COMICS, you guys! Oh dang! You wouldn't stop asking for the return on My Stupid Life, well, here the heck you go.
I only have so many of them to ship out myself, so get on this one as fas as you possibly can, because once they're gone, I don't know how long it'll take for them to be available through other sources. Whee! Prices listed in the dropdown below include shipping, please be careful to order from the appropriate region option.
EDIT: SOLD OUT! Sorry to all you slow pokes who didn't get on it. We're gonna make some more and put them up for sale soon, no worries.
In the mean time, try ordering one from Ben's site, he might still have copies. Nope, Ben sold out of his too. Welp, I guess we're just gonna have to wait!
Coming this March!
This zine is officially debuting at STAPLE in Austin March 1st and 2nd. If you're in Austin or know someone who is, be sure to scoop one of these up while you can! I honestly don't know how many of these we're gonna make and I expect them to move pretty fast, so...
We'll put whatever's left over up for sale online.
Oh, and the cover isn't actually in color, I just colored it so I could spend an hour working on something pointless for absolutely no reason. Priorities!
CLICK FOR A LARGER VIEW
So I designed the cover to the newest issue of Razorcake! Illustration and background photoshop magic by me, inkwash by Nation of Amanda. Available for purchase here. My advice would be to get two copies: One to leave in your bathroom for reading, and one to frame on your wall where your vision board used to be.
I perhaps should mention that I've since retired My Stupid Life from the hallowed pages of Razorcake. No bad blood or anything like that, I still plan to continue doing illustrations for them and Todd and Daryl are still the godparents of any children I may ever have (god help us). But the inspiration well for those comics had just run dry and I decided it would be better to go out on top than keep forcing out more jokes about jerking off as procrastination from comicking. Don't worry, though: Ben Snakepit and Liz Prince and Adrian Chi are all still doing their awesome comics, so you won't even notice mine's gone.
This is officially the first time Maximumrockandroll has ever said anything nice about me. Finally all that street cred pays off! I’m gonna go buy a boat!
CLICK TO READ THE FULL NINE-PAGE COMIC ON MY TUMBLR
"Trying to Breathe"
by Mitch Clem
Inkwash by Nation of Amanda
An excerpt from As You Were #2
Here’s a flyer I made. Drawn by me, waterblackandwhites by Nation of Amanda, rounded out by a color scheme I stole from some other poster I found online.
I went back in time to 1997 and showed this to High School Me and it blew his mind so thoroughly that he never wound up living up to his full potential as an artist and eventually found a silly highlight early in his 31st year on this planet getting to draw a poster for a couple bands he’s still quite fond of in spite of one of them being fronted by a known douche. So it goes…
FUN FACTS: Each character is wearing buttons of the best bands I’ve ever seen open for each of the bands the characters represent. The weasel’s is STYMIE, a great pop punk band from Denton, TX, and the Queers cat’s are THE MR. T EXPERIENCE, THE PARASITES (both of whom opened for the Queers the first time I saw them back in high school - the third show I ever saw! - at the time and to this day I couldn’t understand why MTX wasn’t the headliner), and THE LEFTOVERS (who are the only punk band I’ve ever heard of being from Maine).
FUN FACTS PART TWO: As these bands are being flown in specifically for this show and have no other Texas dates around this show, I was asked to try and make the drawing somehow Texas-centric. I racked my brain for ideas, ultimately coming up with absolutely nothing that wasn’t super trite and artless (longhorn cattle? the alamo? david koresh?), and I ultimately scrapped the Texas theme in favor of just drawing what I’d wanted to in the first place. Upon sending the pencils to the guy who booked the show to get Ben Weasel’s approval of the art concept, the beer cans were not yet filled in with brands, and the booker asked if I could make them Lone Star Beer cans (“That’s Texas to me!” he says). I gladly obliged. However, I’d initially planned on making the Queers cat’s can a Bud (as in “hey you mother fuckers I only drink…”) and the weasel’s an Old Style (which, as I understand it, people in Chicago always brag about).
I’m 2 for 2 so far this year in doing the art on really odd things for bands I love. Here is the first example: I designed a beer tap handle for Bomb the Music Industry. What? Yeah.
Pictured top is the full drawing, and then below is the tap handle itself. I actually think Jeff recropped the official final thing and so it’s gonna come out differently than the one pictured, but the only version of the recropped I’ve seen is on a text on my phone, so I’m just gonna go ahead and show you my original layout.
The tap handle is, as I understand it, going to top a keg of some kinda special BTMI beer to be served at the band’s ten thousandth “final” show. Sounds fun! To think, I’ve been angling to do some art for a microbrewery for years now, and finally get to do my first one a week and a half after I quit drinking. Insanity abounds.
Anyhow! BTMI are the best and Jeff is a rad dude and beer is still a fun choice for people with more self control than me, so this was a great project to help kick off the new year with.
I’ll follow up with the first odd thing I was asked to design for a band I dig soon!
(CLICK FOR FULL-SIZE COMIC)
From Razorake #77
1) CRUSADES - Perhaps You Deliver This Judgement With Greather Fear Than I Receive It - [No Idea Records]
I had no doubt in my mind that Crusades, whose debut full-length was my favorite release of 2011 by such a large margin it felt weird even bothering with the rest of the list, would deliver with this new album. And, shocker, deliver they did. I will say, I didn't anticipate them dominating another year-end list, and yet here we are. Good for them. This sophmore triumph finds the group eschewing a bit of the familiar Samiam/Face to Face nostalgia that won them a place in my heart initially in favor of a darker, moodier sound that's more uniquely their own, though one that would still sound perfectly at home on a dusty VHS compilation of skateboarders falling down. "Perhaps You Deliver..." is a concept album about Giordano Bruno, a 15th century martyr whose torture/execution Crusades maintain constitutes a damning argument against the church. Pretty heady stuff, that, but hey, at least it's catchy!
2) NONA - Through the Head - [Mandible Records]
Let it not be said that 2013 didn't prove an exceptional extention of the recent 90's-revival trend (this very best-of list will handily prove as much). Personally, I couldn't be more for it. I spent the 90s in middle/high school exposing myself to as much of what was happening music-wise as possible. Those were my formative years. So, you know, this is a bit of a treat for me. And Nona is a standout band amidst the trend. Harkening back to sounds as vast as Superchunk and Veruca Salt while still retaining a vital and exciting originality that's kept this album playing on repeat for me througout the bulk of the year. Nona is one of the more exciting newer bands around, and this album is absolutely stellar.
3) RVIVR - The Beauty Between - [ Rumbletowne Records]
I love this band so much it's stupid. I had the great fortune to see them live twice this year and was shocked to see how little justice their recorded output does them, especially considering how much I absolutely adore their recorded output. Yeah, this is a sensationally talented band, urgent and passionate and important. One of the big things that attracted me to punk rock in the first place as a sheltered young suburban kid from Minnesota was its political leanings and its collective yearning for social justice. RVIVR carry on that crucial torch of punks who sing about giving a shit about shit that actually matters. God bless 'em for it.
4) THE COURTNEYS - s/t - [Hockey Dad Records]
It's like there's a party in my ears and I'm actually invited! Woohoo! A welcome throwback to the more pop-centric groups of the pacific northwest riot grrl scene (Bratmobile, Sleater-Kinney, etc). Straight outta Vancouver, B.C., singing songs about watching Beverly Hills 90210 and dating irritating boys, I don't really know what more you could possibly ask for from a band. This album is so full of win it's insane.
5) THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS - Nanobots - [Idlewild Recordings]
Fuck you, kid, these guys are the real deal. It always shocks the hell out of me when a band puts out something so strong a million years and a thousand LPs into their career, but here we go. This is probably TMBG's best album since Factory Showroom (or at least since Mink Car). If you were a fan once upon a time and lost track for whatever reason, it's time to come back. And if that song about Nikola Tesla doesn't make you cry, then I'm sorry, but that was a test, and it turns out you have no soul.
6) SWEARIN' - Surfing Strange - [Salinas/Wichita]
I didn't really think these kids could get better than on their debut LP, and yet here we are. Equal parts modern porch-punk and 90s-retro Pavement-esque dreamy pop. I wasn't quiet about the fact that P.S. Eliot was one of my favorite bands to come out of the past decade, and I was heartbroken when they broke up. I couldn't be more pleased that both the Crutchfield sisters have continued on with their own projects. And, as much as I dig Waxahatchee, I feel like Swearin' retains the edge for me if only for its sincere and passionate dedication to keeping things at least a bit on the pop punk side.
7) WRINGER - Bullfighter - [Smellhound Records]
Wringer is an all-male pop punk trio from Indiana that quite miraculously sounds nothing at all like Dillinger Four or the Copyrights. I didn't realize that was even still an option! This album is just killer, such great songwriting, super catchy, lots of fun.
8) RADIOACTIVITY - s/t - [Dirtnap Records]
Radioactivity is Mark and Jeff from the Marked Men reunited under a deceptively changed moniker. I say deceptively because this is basically just the Marked Men. They're back, and it's just as glorious as you think it's gonna be. Lightning fast powerpoppunk from the guys who perfected the sound years ago, back again to show all the kids how it's done. Fine by me, I never wanted them to leave in the first place.
9) BENNY THE JET RODRIGUEZ - Home. Run - [Recess Records]
Good tiiiiiimes, good times. This sounds like the kinda stuff you expect to hear playing over a montage of 8mm footage of punks running around having fun on a beach. If that makes any sense? I don't know, ten album descriptions is a lot for me, cut me some slack. What's important is Benny the Jet Rodriguez are badass and I love them and so will you.
10) DIRECT HIT! - Brainless God - [Red Scare Industries]
You know how they say, at the beginning of the Big Lebowski, that sometimes there's a person who just fully encapsulates the mood and spirit of the time and place in which they exist? Well, that's a regular phenomenon musically, too, and Direct Hit are fully the Dude for the 2013 punk scene. Encapsulating everything modern without being trite. Frenetic, spastic, anthemic, brilliant. It's only a matter of seconds before Direct Hit is the biggest band in all of punk music, mark my words.