released April 23, 2014
David McGhee - Geetar / Vocals
Frank Registrato - Drums / Vocals / Realistic Concertmate 360
JanKarl Hayes - Bass / vocals
Awesomeness and all producing / recording / mixing / mastering and such all done by Bryan Feuchtinger in April 2014 at his Uneven Studios here in Denver in like 17 hours.
HERE IS, WAS, ARE A COUPLE REVIEWS:
"The Vanilla Milkshakes frontman David McGhee is a character. As in, the ex-junkie, autistic, gay, once-homeless musician refers to himself as a “Denver scenster since 2005,” and does so lovingly. He has that “crazy,” unpredictable quality that makes for an exciting frontman.
“Crazy” is in quotes because it’s not a statement about McGhee’s mental health, though perhaps it could be. More, it’s more of a aesthetic comment. For instance, The Vanilla Milkshakes have been together for two months. Yet, on June 28, they will release their first LP, a collection of 13 songs called “How to Ruin Friendships and Influence Douche Bags.” The album was recorded in a 17-hour marathon at Uneven Studios with Hot IQs’ bassist Bryan Feuchtinger.
The album sounds like it was made in 17-hours. It’s unpolished and has “oops moments,” where McGhee actually says “oops.” But honestly, The Vanilla Milkshakes could have 17 months in a studio, and it would sound the same. This low-fi, unpretentious rock is their intentional sound, and it really works.
Kurt Cobain really admired the music of Daniel Johnston, and The Vanilla Milkshakes have positioned themselves somewhere on the bridge between Nirvana and Johnston. The tracks are stripped-down garage rock with deprecating, humorous lyrics with McGhee’s endearingly off delivery and enough “whoa” sing-alongs to bring in the listener." - Josh Johnson / The Denver Post
3.5 out of 5 stars
"Denver/Arvada punk-pop band The Vanilla Milkshakes’ debut release How to Ruin Friendships and Influence Douche Bags was recorded in just 17 hours — a fitting schedule for the autistic, gay, formerly homeless, junkie guitar player David McGhee, who fronts the group. It’s a hard-hitting, fist in the face sound with lyrics that exude humor, apathy and self-deprecation. The album opener “After School Special” mirrors Nirvana’s “Stay Away,” with a Daniel Johnston-inspired, Kurt Cobain-esque scream by McGhee. The influence of ’90s punk bands The Offspring, Social Distortion and Bad Religion are prevalent, yet The Vanilla Milkshakes, mostly due to the vocals, seem to capture that Johnston/Cobain style, where missed notes are seen as character builders rather than flaws. Songs like “The One That Goes” has McGhee channeling 7Seconds, while “Dance! Robot! Dance!” is a slower paced melody, begging “will you still love me when I’m gone?” It’s the band’s well-rounded mix of heavy riffs, acoustic jams, and one exuberant frontman that makes their effort entertaining, and worth the listen." — D. Sharp
"I've been a fan of David McGhee's music, but this is probably his best record yet. David sounds great, the songs are his wittiest whine-punk yet, the band is on point, and Bryan Feuchtinger outdid himself on production. Do yourself a favor and pick this one up."
"Right around 1982, a new breed of punk music started coming from California with all the rock of New York and all the snark of London, but with its own kind of erudition. Bands like Black Flag and The Dead Kennedys were expanding punk’s lyrical vocabulary in the same way that the Ramones and the Sex Pistols expanded its musical vocabulary. One listen to "How To Ruin Friendships and Influence Douce Bags" is all you’ll need to be able to see the clear influence of Henry Rollins or Jello Biafria on Denver’s The Vanilla Milkshakes.
Punk and I have a complicated relationship. I always find myself wanting to like it more than I actually do - so the nice thing for me about this album is that I get to experience the adolescent joy of it all without having to revisit works that always leave me ambivalent. This is music for playing loud in the car to vent off the road rage that your hour long commute instills. This is music for feeling superior about feeling inferior about feeling superior. If, at any time, a passing car or a shop window has made you smile by unexpectedly hitting you with “California Uber Alles” then get “How to Ruin Friendships and Influence Douche Bags.”
"The standout track for me was “I’m No Prize Myself” if for no other reason than the high bpm count - and the intro to Kreep certainly seems like a nice little nod to Tom Verlaine and Television."
- Vaylor Trucks