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666

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Album Review

Bringing together two years' worth of singles and live tracks, 666 is something of an odds-and-sods collection, gathering the six songs the band recorded in June 2006 with some older and rarer singles and live tracks. However, it sounds nearly as consistent as Mika Miko's first full-length, C.Y.S.L.A.B.F. — albeit much rawer (and that album isn't especially polished). The bandmembers sound like they're falling on top of each other as they whip through breakneck numbers like "Zombies Take One," which bristles with equal amounts of distortion and playful melodies. The band's unrepentantly lo-fi sound recalls not only obvious influences like riot grrrl — especially on "Dear Teen Magazine," which was culled from a 2005 live set — but also more hidden roots; "Too Cute to Puke"'s chunky thrash and the cover of the Misfits' "Attitude" nod to early punk and hardcore. At times ("Sev," "Frisco Dyke"), Mika Miko's sound comes perilously close to devolving into pure sludge, and their sheer force can get a little numbing in one sitting; there was a reason why these songs were originally presented in single and EP formats. Still, the band finds ways to bring some nuances to its onslaughts: "Forensic Scientist"'s keyboards give it a deranged new wave feel; "Wild Bore" sounds a little like the B-52's' "Rock Lobster" gone feral; and "With My Ducks" excels at stream-of-consciousness punk. Anyone who liked C.Y.S.L.A.B.F. should appreciate the dose of Mika Miko's muscular sound and quirky sense of humor that 666 provides.

Biography

Formed: Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

With a name that means "storytelling" in Japanese and influences that include Black Flag, the Necros, Reagan Youth, and Bad Brains, Los Angeles' thrashy-but-danceable Mika Miko feature Jessica and Jennifer Clavin, Jenna Thornhill, Michelle Suarez, and Kate Hall. Except for Hall, all of the ladies of Mika Miko played in Dead Banana Ladies, and various members played with other L.A. acts such as the Ride, Silver Daggers, and Slitwrists. Jessica Clavin and Hall both played in Wake Up SF, and when Mika...
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