CD Review: M.O.D. “Busted, Broke & American”

“Busted, Broke & American”
M.O.D. (Method of Destruction)
Megaforce Records
Tracks: 12

Our score: 4 out of 5 stars

Legendary hardcore/thrash band M.O.D. are back with a brand new full-length album titled “Busted, Broke & American”. The album (the bands 10th) was 3 years in the making and over that course of time the band helmed by vocalist Billy Milano went through a variety of ups and downs and at the end reunited with Megaforce Records to release what could be considered M.O.D.’s most brash and in your face collection of songs to date.

Put this album on and prepare to be pummeled as NY hardcore staple Billy Milano and company come out with all guns blazing on the band’s latest release “Busted, Broke & American”. The track “The Final Declaration” whose gang vocal filled choruses chant “to war” is a staunch warning of what your ears are in for over the course of the next 11 tracks. As the album progresses listeners are treated to the in your face, pull no punches approach of Mr. Milano. Case in point the aptly titled “You’re A Fucking Dick” and probably my favorite track off the album “Busted, Broke & American” which shoves it finger straight into the chest of today’s society. Other tracks I found to stand out was the heavily punk influenced “Shattered Dreams & Broken Glass” and the shredding instrumental track “All Out of Bubblegum”.

Be ready to jump in the deep end as “Busted, Broke & American” is full on from the word go. Intense, thought provoking lyrics mixed with bombastic instrumentation make up each of the albums 12 tracks. With Milano going on record stating that this could in-fact be M.O.D.’s final record he and the rest of the band certainly gave their all leaving nothing on the table.

Track Listing:
1.) Eisenhower Was Right
2.) The Final Declaration
3.) You’re A Fucking Dick
4.) Busted, Broke & American
5.) Fight
6.) Hooligan
7.) Billy Be Damned
8.) Shattered Dreams & Broken Glass
9.) They
10.) All Out of Bubblegum
11.) Go Go Revolution
12.) Kennedy Speaks

Be sure to check out our exclusive interview with M.O.D. frontman Billy Milano here.

M.O.D. Vocalist Billy Milano Talks About the Bands New Album “Busted, Broke & American”

Billy Milano is the outspoken vocalist for the legendary hardcore/thrash band M.O.D. On July 7th the group will release its 10th full-length studio album titled “Busted, Broke & American” via Megaforce Records. Media Mikes had the chance to talk with Billy recently about the album which was an extremely personal record Milano as well as his thoughts on the current state of hardcore and the possibility of this being the group’s final album.

Adam Lawton: M.O.D. went through a couple rough patches during the making of the new album which was originally slated to be released a couple years ago. Can you tell us about that?

Billy Milano: I have never been one of those guys that say’s I “have” to do something because of music. A lot of people know me from music but that’s not all of who I am. I did the “Red, White and Screwed” album in 2007 and then toured it for a year and a half. During that time one of the things I realized was that I had been forcing myself into a position I didn’t want to be in. I needed some time for myself as I just didn’t care anymore. It wasn’t that I didn’t care about the band it’s just that I generally do about a two year run with a group of guys and then that’s it. People change and I tend to get angsty unless, they bring something to the table. I don’t agree with people being involved in my life that are all encompassing. I am an adult and want to be able to go and live my life how I want to without any interference. When I came back from California in 2012 after the first sessions for this album there was a myriad of problems. There were guys in the band I was tired off, the producer I was working with wasn’t the right guy for the job and what we ended up with didn’t work for me. I took about a whole year off after this. Also at this time my dog Buster was very sick. To watch him go through what he did was heart breaking and I couldn’t leave him. I started playing guitar again at this time and that’s when this record started to come to life.

AL: The band is back with Megaforce Records. Can you tell us how that relationship came back together?

BM: I had started working on the record again and it was starting to turn out special. I had a couple labels that were interested at the time and out of nowhere Missy the owner of Megaforce calls me up to talk about doing a 30th anniversary edition for the “U.S.A. for M.O.D.” record. I thought that would be really cool and while we were talking I asked her if she would be interested in hearing the new record. I played it for her and she liked what she heard. From there we decided to work together on this record and also to re-release three M.O.D. records from our back catalog. Megaforce has been very good to us and the packaging has come out amazing.

AL: What are your thoughts on the recent upswing that hardcore music is experiencing right now and, where do you feel M.O.D. fits in with today’s music scene?

BM: A lot of people have always looked at M.O.D. and wondered what is it? If you listen to the records it’s not hardcore, thrash or punk. It’s got a little bit of everything in it. I think it has a hardcore punk attitude which is something I myself have always been, a New York Hardcore Skinhead even as hairy as I am now I still consider myself that. (Laughs) When we would start putting together a tour I would think to myself about bands who we could tour with and it was hard because there was no one else really like M.O.D. We just didn’t fit any one specific category. M.O.D. has a core group of fans and I accept that because that is what I have offered. I have only offered a cursorary involvement with M.O.D. live around the world because I feel there are other things in my life that take precedent. That’s not what musicians who are successful think like. In my case growing up in an Italian family with 11 brothers and sisters with tight nit community around us gave me a different attitude towards things. As to addressing where M.O.D. fits on the tooth of the gear to this day this is something I still can’t answer. I know we have a great record coming out to go along with some of the other great records we have put out in the past. “Busted, Broke & American” is a very memorable record. I think it’s coming to a point where it wasn’t the timing of other things going on that might be good for it as much as it was the timing of where I am at. Things are coexisting together and that’s something you just can’t plan. It just happens. I have always just been Billy Milano. There are a lot of hardcore bands out there doing reunions and playing shows right now and I think a lot of that has to do with the vinyl market. Bands are able to release their back catalogs for the first time on vinyl and getting deals based on that which allows them then to put out new music. The anniversary of “U.S.A For M.O.D” and the history M.O.D. had with Megaforce Records certainly helped me get this new record out and I am grateful for that.

AL: You stated in a press release that “Busted, Broke & American” very well could be M.O.D.’s last album. Is that still the case as we get closer to the July 7 release date?

BM: Yes, Absolutely! Do I think I could write another record like? No. Too much pain went into this record. Watching my dog die while writing this and learning how to play guitar again was just awful. At my age the stress that comes along with doing a record is not something I want to deal with. This was a very personal record to me and I put a lot into it. I mixed this thing seven times because it was so personal. It was Busters record. I don’t think I am doing another record. Will I do a single or an EP? Sure. I think I can write a few great songs every one or two years and put out an EP with somebody. It would be cool to do something with M.O.D. and maybe some unsigned punk bands and put that stuff out and expose people to new music. For me that would be a better legacy than a follow up record. I have always tried to help unsigned people. I have brought in unknown musicians to my records because I wanted to bring people into that pool of the music industry.

AL: Are there any plans to perform the new album live?

BM: I have no live shows planned at this moment. We haven’t even been able to rehearse as we are minus a drummer at this moment. I had a guy lined up but due to some personal things he was not able to keep going with us. We will find a drummer eventually. There are always guys out there that want to get paid to play. Our music isn’t Rush or Dream Theater. Maybe more like “Mystery Science 3000 Theater” but not those other groups. (Laughs) When we are ready will be out there ripping it. In the mean time I am focusing on two books I am writing. The first one is my personal book and the second is a cook book which I am doing for my mom. I have another band I am working with called “Billy Be Damned”. I play rhythm guitar in that band. If I had to describe it, it would be a mixture of The Pogues meets Stiff Little Fingers meets the Clash and Foo Fighters. It’s heavy but it’s not metal.

Be sure to check out our exclusive review of “Busted, Broken & American” here. And for more info on Billy and M.O.D. head over to www.milanomosh.com

Jaleel White talks about new web series “BPOV” (aka Broke People on Vine)

Jaleel White is known best for his role as Steve Urkel in “Family Matters”. But Jaleel has been one biggest guy over the last few years going from “Dancing with the Stars” to hosting his own reality series on Syfy “Total Blackout” to guest starring on “CSI” this past January. His latest gig is a absolutely riot called “BPOV”, which stands for Broke People on Vine. It is a new web series that airs on YouTube weekly. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Jaleel about the show. the craze of Vine and what we can expect.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us how you got involved with Urban Hombre Media?
Jaleel White: I am a partner in the company along with Andres Izquieta, who is the CEO of Five Four Clothing. Five Four is an online based men’s club clothing brand. They put their clothes on everybody. So rather than have me be a brand ambassador for them, Andres reached out to me about branching out into production on the internet. The internet is something that we cannot ignore these days. It is bigger than just tweeting stuff. You need actual content on the internet. But this is a fun company and we are going to have a lot of good things coming up.

MG: I love the title for the show, “BPOV” (aka Broke People on Vine).
JW: Some people have said why call it “BPOV”. I really like the acronym because it is about a point of view of broke people because rich people on Vine ain’t funny [laughs]. Our director whipped up the logo, with a “South Park” version of me, which is cool. It is a great collaboration and we come up with the ideas collectively. So we are just keeping it real and having fun and we are going to keep pumping them out.

MG: So what is it about Vine that has people so hooked?
JW: A lot of my friends and people that I am familiar with are on Vine. I find myself at night just watching Vine on my phone like it is TV show. It is crazy really. After a long day, you are just lying around checking texts and emails and then you skip over to Vine and get stuck there for a half hour. By the time you are done, you aren’t going to watch TV; you are going to do to bed. Sometimes my daughter will come in the room and I will find something that is kid appropriate and we will then sit there and watch the same Vine like 15 times in a row [laughs].

MG: How many times did you have to watch these videos during shooting?
JW: What is really cool about the show is that I actually don’t get to see the Vines beforehand. Even if I like one and submit it for consideration, when the guys put together the top 10 reel I have no idea which ones are in there. If you watch you will see my eyes glance down sometimes because they want me to respond and react in real time. I am watching them for the first time right there. So even if it is one that I submitted, you are still getting an immediate and unknown reaction within the flow of the shot. When we did “Worst Job Interviews” episode and they guy was just hired at Krispy Kreme and does the back flip, that was an honest reaction from me and that was the first time I have ever saw that. We wanted my reaction to be the same reaction that you are viewers will experience. So that makes it fun.

MG: I love how the episodes run three minutes each; quick, tight and effective.
JW: It really channels to people’s attention spans right now. I don’t watch a half hour TV show every night before I go to bed as I would back when I was young kid. I will spend some time on Vine and that is it.

MG: How often can we expect new episodes?
JW: We are looking to keep putting them out, I think every Monday. Then down the line, we are looking to expand and putting them out even more. We will do some year-end stuff as well. It is just one of those things that it out there, it is what I do and I am big fan of Vine. I prefer to cover it then do my own Vines. To get to share these with people is just funnier for me personally. So that is the show man! Check it out and spread the word to your friends!