Radio Zero will be an ongoing review of music of critical interest. Michael O’Flaherty was the pop-music critic for The Baffler, and is the author of the novel Shiny Shiny.
Mecca Normal, [Self-Titled] (Smarten Up!, 1986)—
Debut from this artistically uncompromising, singular duo; an incredibly raw and alive take on protest-folk as filtered through distortion—crazed punk rock guitar (no rhythm section necessary), as if there was NO ESSENTIAL DIFFERENCE between Woody Guthrie and Black Flag. . . The detonator is Jean Smith’s trilling, wailing, snarling vocal presence, somewhere between Lydia Lunch and Corin Tucker (on whom she was a key influence). . . Try A/3, A/6, B/1