The Urinals, somehow, shared more than a fair share of musical similarities with all the New Zealand stuff at work around the same period of time. No, there weren’t any Tall Dwarfs corollaries as such, but the same sort of fast paced jangly pop stuff ran through both bands recorded works. Hearing the Urinals collected on Negative Capability should sate any fan of reasonably intelligent rock stuff masquerading as sub-tards strangling their instruments. With the name change, 100 Flowers still had use for a few musical ideas worked up during its first incarnation.
As included on 100 Years of Pulchritude, “Dizzy Ms. Lizzy” includes some of the more noisome elements found in the Urinals approach to guitar while its back beat winds up being connected closely to the Texas hardcore groups defining itself in relation to the Minutemen – Really Red and the Big Boys. Firmly rooted in its own place and time, 100 Flowers worked up material like, “California’s Falling into the Ocean,” again referencing its punkier past while still making sure to toss in rhythmic interplay far beyond its contemporaries. Most engaging about the song, is the band being able to include all that with more than a dash of vocal melodicism. Even today, how many punk bands sport harmonies? Not too many.
By the early eighties, when most of LA’s first wave of punk acts were busy working with ex-Doors players or figuring out how to be a Mexican rock band, the Urinals kicked around long enough to be an accidental link to the following era of underground rock groups like 7 Year Bitch and whoever else would wind up being insinuated into Sub Pop’s ultimate domination of the indie rock scene. That being said, the Urinals and even 100 Flowers easily trump most of that schlock. Hey, even Jay Reatard like these guys.