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Kisses from Hanoi / Horseshoes and Handgrenades

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Album Review

This CD combines both the GC5's first full-length album, 2000's Kisses From Hanoi, and the 2001 EP Horseshoes and Hand Grenades, previously available only from a tiny Irish indie label. Good old-fashioned lefty street punk in the manner of Alternative TV, Stiff Little Fingers, and the early Clash (even though the quartet is actually from turn-of-the-millennium Columbus, OH, not mid-'70s England), these records are brashly enjoyable, even though neither Pete Kyrou's voice (shades of Social Distortion's Mike Ness) nor the band's wall-of-thrash sound are particularly distinctive. What puts them over are the lyrics, which are intelligent, slyly funny, and thoughtfully rabble-rousing. "One for Eugene," a free-speech screed that recognizes that Eugene V. Debs is a more valid figurehead than Howard Stern, makes some cogent points, as does the pummeling "Culture Wars." The whole thing is topped off by a gleeful deconstruction of the Replacements' "Bastards of Young" that recasts the song as a rallying cry along the lines of Black Flag's "Rise Above."

Customer Reviews

Great Band

If you like $winging Utter$ and Dropkick Murphys and any other OI1 or streetpunk band you wil easily like GC5

They woke up my neighborhood

Just when I thought punk rock was stale, and there was no-one left to speak for me, my inability to find my place in this world, and my working class peers, I stumbled on to White Flag. Instead of waiving one for the cause of good music, I found the nearest GC5 show to me and I went. Countless shows later, and armed with a collection of their CDs, my musical soul was awakened, and a fire was lit. And then, they left almost as quickly as they arrived. For those of you lucky enough to catch them, you know what I mean. Fast Forward to the year 2007, and put "currency" on at full volume. Get chills down your spine. Listen with the lyrics in front of you. What were YOU doing when you were 21? Writing stuff like this? If ONLY!

Great stuff!

This is a really nice album, full of energetic punk. Fans of music by bands like Face to Face, the Street Dogs, and American Steel probably will also enjoy this. I think this band and album deserve to be better known.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The GC5 is a punk rock combo straight out of Cleveland, OH, that performs a highly British-influenced form of the genre. The members were teenagers when their first EPs started coming out, and in 2000 they released their first full-length album, Kisses From Hanoi. A few EPs later and they had enough to make a compilation, Singles Collection...
Full Bio
Kisses from Hanoi / Horseshoes and Handgrenades, The GC5
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Customer Ratings