Friday, December 21, 2007

Christmas Ape and Christmas Ape Goes to Summer Camp.
I'll get back to my half-assed list of favorite things of the thing later. It's time for some Christmas Jams! Most of these selections can be found on the mega rare Snowman-shaped Wonderful Christmastime/Rush Job 2-CD mix tape box set I made for a White Elephant exchange last year. If I remember correctly, Ms. Emily Twentyfive owns the only copy on spaceship Earth. Congratulations, Emily. They can also be found separately in many other places. Enjoy them together again for the first time below.

Alan Vega - "No More Christmas Blues"

Full credit to WFMU for alerting me to this. Not unlike Paul Beatle and wife and friends, only it was released on a Ze comp. and you probably won't hear it on WYYY. Also perfect for starting a Suicide kick if the pretty great knock-off from Candy-O isn't enough.

Caetano Veloso - "In The Hot Sun of a Christmas Day"

As previously side-noted a little while ago by me, this is the first whole Veloso song I ever heard, from Peanut Butter Wolf's (or someone else from Stones Throw's) Christmas mix from last year. From that category of Christmas songs that use Christmas primarily as a backdrop for a story about a guy narrowly evading a bloody manhunt. Includes the lines "Machine gun/in the hot sun of a Christmas day".

Claudine Longet - "Snow"

More of a winter song than a Christmas song, and a grim, lonely winter song at that ("Our dreams lay buried in the snow"), from the acclaimed French actress and songstress who left Andy Williams for pro skier Spider Sabich, who she later shot sometime in the '70s.

Rowlph and John Denver - "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"

From the Muppets/Denver collabo, A Christmas Together, which is up right there with A Charlie Brown Christmas, Crom-Tech X-Mas, and Dorothy Hammill's PAX nightmare from a couple years back. If I ever cover a Christmas song, I think it should be this one. I can do a decent Rowlph impression, and I know all the asides, too. It'll wind up sounding like Tom Waits and a guy making fun of John Denver, but I'm just going to do it anyway.

Mirror Image - "Deck The Halls"

From their 1979 album, Yuletide Disco, which looks like this. Not nearly as unbearable as Universal Robot Band's "Disco Christmas", but still covered in Variety Hour sheen and best in small doses. Lots of great synth sounds, though, and a cheap robot reggae version of "Deck The Halls" totally out of nowhere.

Bob and Doug McKenzie - "The Twelve Days of Christmas"

Arguably the only funny Christmas song that will be really, really funny forever. No disrespect to the barking dogs doing "Jingle Bells".

Non-Christmas jam of all-time is Ghostface and MF Doom's "Angeles" from the forthcoming album Swift and Changeable (DO NOT COPY) set for release in late 2006.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Baggin' ounces in the back of the Maz.
Alright, I should probably do some 2007 best-of spiels before the year is out and I forget what it was I liked so much. I'll start with a couple must-haves by two bands that conquered my brain in the early part of '07. El Michels Affair continued their Wu obsession by collaborating with actual Clan member Raekwon on the PJ's...from afar EP, together interpreting Pete Rock's "PJ's" as only true dusty Shaolin Brooklynites can--L. Michels and crew laying down their cinema soul moods with a little more cut n' paste flair, while Raekwon gets almost stream-of-conciousness about day-to-day nefarious things (I think). If you have a heart for New York hip-hop, it will get all aflutter. Clean and instrumental version of "PJ's" are also included, as well as the deep stunner, "This One Is For My Baby", and some bonus beats. Did anyone else see that Fat Beats ad in the Wax Poetics photo issue that mentioned an El Michels "Wu-Tang covers album, title TBA"? Did anyone else gasp (or say "Noooo shiiiittt") out loud??

El Michels Affair and Raekwon - "PJ's (clean)"
El Michels Affair - "This One Is For My Baby"

I also geeked out majorly over Soiled Mattress and the Springs' Springtime! 12" right around the same time (January/February) I was geeking out over the first of El Michels' Shaolin 7"s. Honestly, that period was like the highlight of my year. Just coming home from work, freezing, putting on Soiled Mattress and El Michels one after the other for an hour or so, and dreaming about what Spring and Summer might have in store possibility-wise. NYC's Soiled Mattress especially came out of nowhere with the perfect idea--wonderfully executed bar mitzvah-ish jazz for everyone--and introduced me to the excellent Teenage Teardrops label, who's blog then introduced me to the Smell-centered LA scene that I feel like I've been living through vicariously ever since. If I wasn't a little unsure as to whether or not Springtime! came out this year or at the tail end of 2006 (and if I wasn't truly bowled over by one other record in particular), I would say this was the best record of 2007. But there's no doubt it was the most refreshing piece of non-rock pure joy I heard all year (and let's not forget that back cover photo of the boat with the words "DOCK WAR" spray-painted across it).

Soiled Mattress and the Springs - "Phillip's Head"
Soiled Mattress and the Springs - "AM"

Christmas Bonus(es): I think we can all agree Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmas Time" is the Christmas national anthem. At the very least you should check out the video, if possible. White dorks on dope! Back-up anthem is The Free Design's "Close Your Mouth (It's Christmas)", which is maybe definitely a more impressive song.
Serious Non-Christmas Bonus: The Creatures' Expansion over at the Red Room. For disco robot weirdos only.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Poised
to be a
mediary.

It's pretty rare that I discover an album completely on my own. I'd be lying if I said there wasn't a straight line from someone else's record collection (mainly TFS's) to mine, or that I don't spend my few hours of free time everyday wandering the internet in search of other nerd dudes' recommendations and free samples. Even when it's not one of those two situations, I can usually retrace the steps (down to absurd details, like what shirt I was wearing and the feeling in the air) that got me to owning any album in my room, but every once in a while that trail goes totally cold, as is the case with The Covocation Of...'s 2001 album, Pyramid Technology. I think it may have been a Jason Schulmerich (then of Fantastic Records, later of Hell On Earth, and now of the Yawn Factory) recommendation based on my known appreciation for Unwound, Botch, Aesop Rock, Sam McPheeters, et al. I seem to remember him saying, "You'll like this." either right before or right after I bought it, but I can't be sure. I also seem to remember playing it, along with Lightning Bolt's Ride The Skies, for Tyler in my parents' computer room, and then him putting it on a tape with a Scorpions record (maybe Lonesome Crow?). That would make sense, but again, I can't be sure. Regardless, Pyramid Technology is fucking killer and more instantly satisfying than some of guitarist/vocalist Tonie Joy's earlier, arguably more essential projects (Moss Icon, Universal Order of Armageddon, The Great Unraveling, etc.). Kind of a dirty prog mega-rock thing, kind of a psych wah-wah version of the hal al Shedad, with Joy singing about dark forces the way Benjamin Britton Lukens sang about sad angels, albeit less British-ly (no pun intended?). Additionally, bassist Guy Blakeslee and drummer George France both slay harshly, and Chris Coady's production is the best shit ever. They don't make records like this anymore (as far as I know), and this was only six years ago.

The Convocation Of... - "Crimson King's Deceit"
The Convocation Of... - "Ramblin'"
The Convocation Of... - "Unlimited Outer Thought Broadcast"

Not surprisingly, Mira Billotte's version of "As I Went Out One Morning" is the best thing on the I'm Not There soundtrackt. Speaking of that...uhh sort of, check out Eddie Hazel doing "I Want You (She's So Heavy)". Tasty licks! Also, every episode of Dr. Katz is now available on DVD. Get on it!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I'll rent
the truck.

Punks! It probably goes without saying that Nazti Skinz' long-gone Sic Semper Tyrannis EP is not going to appeal to everyone. If you can make absurd off-color jokes with your friends (please notice there's a T in their name!), were a fan or member of The Chuds (Newark), or are generally not an uptight pantywaste, you'll be fine. Otherwise, you may have questions or concerns. Mentioning that Nazti Skinz featured members of Wrangler Brutes, The Monorchid, Le Shok, etc. and that their sole EP was released by Youth Attack may also help put it in the proper context. Plus, just try not to boogie to "No Accident"! It's impossible. Can't not boogie. It's that teenage trash feeling, the perfect blurred line between pure, ridiculous anger and fun (not to mention a certain mysterioso reputation and general scarcity) that keeps Sic Semper Tyrannis going for semi-crazy $50+ prices on eBay. It's that undeniable need for horribly/awesomely-recorded gems, perfect for skating and destroying or wishing you could skate and destroy, that must be pursued worry-free.

Nazti Skinz - "No Accident"
Nazti Skinz - "Tirade"
Nazti Skinz - "Criminal Crime"

Songs that may go over easier include Nelson Angelo and Joyce's "Sete Cahorros", Francoise Hardy's "Le Temps De L'amour", and/or Olivia Newton John's "Magic". Also, a couple good VBS joints--No Age on Practice Space and Enrique Metinides on Art Talk. Avoid the Enrique Metinides stuff if you can't handle dead bodies and sad things.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

















Kurt Werts is 65 years old.

It's my dad's birthday today! He's 65, approaching old fogey status. That's him in the black vest and flowers (and my mom staring at the camera) at what I've been told was a Sgt. Pepper party. This was when they were living in...South Dakota? I can never remember which Dakota they lived in. I think it was South. Or maybe they were still at Grove City. Regardless, my dad's pretty great. If you see him, wish him a Happy B-Day. Also, feel free to check out the best "Dad" song I could think of below.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I can feel
the real dis-ease.

I've been pretty burned out on music lately, but here goes anyway: a couple post-Halloween records that also work year-round. First is Quix*o*tic's second and final album, 2002's Mortal Mirror. Featuring Christina Billotte (Casual Dots, Slant 6, Autoclave), Mira Billotte (White Magic), and an almost unrecognizably shred-free Mick Barr (Crom-Tech, Orthrelm), Mortal Mirror, for me, kind of blows all those past and present works out of the water (although I do adore Crom-Tech, and I'm starting to adore White Magic, and there is that one Autoclave song). It's also essentially a guide for what girls should do if they're going to start a band--spooky, slightly mathy garage/ girl group jams, with stunning Aaron Neville and Black Sabbath covers thrown in. That's only if you want people totally falling in love with you and thinking you're the coolest, though.

Quix*o*tic - "Anonymous Face"
Quix*o*tic - "Open Up The Walls"
Quix*o*tic - "Lord of This World"

And then there's Velvet Cacoon's Genevieve. Full credit goes to Tyler Farren for randomly throwing this on the living room stereo (thanks, Leah!) one afternoon, and for generally being my #1 black metal supplier (sorry, Leah). I'm still an amateur enthusiast, but I'll say this: Genevieve is in the gauzy, speed drone realm of the black metal universe, full of multi-layered embittered darkness and occasional growls of despair in mini-epic form--not quite the high Wagner-ian drama of something like Vothana, but moving nonetheless. I want to say if you could get down with Orchid, you could probably get down with this, too. But who knows? I had this idea for a haunted house/hayride thing that revolved around Genevieve being played really loud inside an abandoned church, which seems kind of cheesy now. It's good, though, it's pretty scary.

Velvet Cacoon - "1"
Velvet Cacoon - "P.S. Nautical"
Velvet Cacoon - "Genevieve"

Random other songs are "Scrapbooking", "Odorono", and "Ten Thousand Animal Calls" (remember this song??). Check out clips from the best album of 2008, I mean besides whatever Straight, No Chaser puts out. Oh and Spiked Candy got updated big time last week--major French girl pop and Halloween song talk, plus A LOT of downloadable things.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

TRICK OR TREAT, YOU SONOFA-
BITCH!!

Hey! It's Halloween, so here's some scary stuff. The Shining soundtrack initially saw the light of day back in 1980, but was quickly recalled due to licensing issues and has remained fairly scarce ever since, save the occasional bootleg or eBay listing (where I found my copy). You can find most, if not all, of the songs scattered on other releases, and Wendy Carlos features all of her and Rachel Elkind's work for the film (including a ton of un-used pieces) in her Rediscovering Lost Scores, Vol. 1 collection. But there's something nice about having it all in one place. And when I say "nice", I mean "frightening and unsettling as shit". The songs by Carlos and Elkind, Krzystof Penderecki, Bela Bartok, and Gyorgy Ligeti featured on the original soundtrack LP are just as terrifying outside the movie as they are steady-camming down the winding halls of the Overlook Hotel. Total unspeakable creepiness and traumatizing, bad haunted vibes right in your own home--doesn't that sound great? Hooray.

Krzystof Penderecki - "De Natura Sonoris No. 2"
Bela Bartok - "Music For Strings, Percussion, and Celesta"
Wendy Carlos and Rachel Elkind - "The Shining (Main Title)"

Bonus scare jams are Thrones' "Valley of the Thrones" and Ten Grand's "Scary Movie 4". Also, White Magic's "Very Late" is both the spookiest and best song of the week. Claymation allegedly banned from TV for being too creepy and satanic can be found here. Have a scaaaaarry Hannukah!

Monday, October 29, 2007

From the page in the book that I found.
Another real quick double-post, this time focusing exclusively on some chilled-out early '70s jams. First up is Layers, Les McCann's 1973 minimal space jazz spectacular, originally put out by Atlantic and recently vinyled-up again by the impeccable folks at 4 Men With Beards, with liner notes by Bundy K. Brown (!). I may even go so far as to say Layers is the jazz synth, funk bent, ambient groove record of my dreams. "Sometimes I Cry" sets the tone perfectly with some pre-Steve Curry, soft funk relaxation, while McCann's penchant for the harder stuff (and some Ray Charles worship) creeps up on a few of the later songs, especially on "The Dunbar High School Marching Band". But it's the open-air keyboard feeling of the more silent songs that really does it for me--those warped electronic notes echoing in an empty room that may as well be the entire universe, inner and outta spaces combined in a weird but totally familiar way. Also, Layers has apparently been mined a bit by the hip-hop community (for good reason), although the only sample I recognized right away was the one from "The Harlem Buck Dance Strut" used in part of Beck, Mike D, and Mario Caldato Jr's remix of the Blues Explosion's "Flavor".

Les McCann - "Sometimes I Cry"
Les McCann - "The Dunbar High School Marching Band"
Les McCann - "Before I Rest"


Also, I've really been wearin' the shit out of my copy of Francoise Hardy's gorgeous 1970 LP, Alone. Since I'm still a novice Hardy-file, I'll defer to the guy filling in for Justin Gage and his recent synopsis of why she's pretty great (I swear I'm not copying him; I've been planning this post for weeks!), though I will add that I'd been a stickler for her French-only stuff right up until I heard Alone, one of her (I think) first few English-language albums. As usual, her work on Alone is soothing and effortless, and her accented English adds a little something, beyond just me being able to understand what she's saying. It also feels a little less like her early, French-traditional Vogue pop, and more like an orchestral folk-pop collection, a la maybe Nick Drake or someone of that ilk, though without a lot of overly self-conscious bummage. It makes me want to shift my focus entirely to her pretty substantial late '60s/early '70s output, or, barring that, travel back in time, and I can virtually guarantee you will want to do the same exact thing.

Francoise Hardy - "Magic Horse"
Francoise Hardy - "Strange Shadows"
Francoise Hardy - "I Just Want To Be Alone"

Other songs are the Mary Timony Band's "Sharpshooter" and The Clean's "Platypus". Thurston Moore has a really nice office. Ken Burns needs to do a 12-part miniseries on him talking about things. Also, there's another stellar Ariel Pink video, and Black Dice's video for "Kokomo" melted my brain with its use of Fruity Cheerios commercial footage, among other things. It's like someone stuck their Gore book in the VCR.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Sad dreams blow through dark trees.
I've been on a major David Lynch kick lately, which has involved a few different things--a couple weeks re-watching Twin Peaks, braving all three hours of Inland Empire yesterday afternoon, scattered portions of Chris Rodley's Lynch on Lynch interview collection, and of course, Monsterpiece Theater's presentation of Twin Beaks. What started all this for me was Julee Cruise's 1990 album, Floating Into The Night, produced and written by David Lynch and his frequent soundtrack collaborator Angelo Badalamenti. Floating Into The Night is almost a companion piece to Twin Peaks (a la The Secret Diary of Laura Palmer, Tapes of Agent Cooper, etc.), evoking the dreamy '50s love vibe and often overwhelming emotional focus on simple things (owls, fire, darkness, the wind blowing through the trees) that were so integral to the show. Cruise even performs a couple of the songs from Floating in both the pilot and in the episode where we find out for sure who killed Laura, in the scene at the Roadhouse(?) where the Giant eventually shows up and says "It is happening again". Creepy shit. Actually the only thing missing from the album is the super terror of BOB, which is maybe a good thing, although he is thanked in the liner notes (gulp).

Julee Cruise - "Floating"
Julee Cruise - "Rockin' Back Inside My Heart"

If you listen to any other songs today, they should be Family Fodder's "Savoir Faire" and Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood (RIP) doing "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'". You could, should, and would hear "Savoir Faire" as part of Derek Erdman's guest set on WFMU, as well. It's on that page somewhere. Also mandatory is Anthology Recordings' new "astral folk goddesses" podcast, curated by Plastic Crimewave of Galactic Zoo Dossier fame. Even if you know for a fact you would hate an "astral folk goddesses" podcast, you will like it.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Fiery lovers will make you blunder.
Real quick: A couple re-issues from foreign lands. First is Soul Jazz's new Brazil 70 compilation, full of incredible post-Tropicalia folk strummings and crazy fantastic rock jams from the oppressive Brazilian '70s, featuring the usual suspects--Caetano Veloso, Tom Ze, Gilberto Gil, Rita Lee, etc. It's ok if you're not familiar with any of those names. I'd only heard a couple Veloso songs and only really liked one of them, and it was a Christmas song. Not to mention the lesser-known players in this collection are the real keepers. Also, I can't vouch for anything they're saying since I don't speak Portuguese, but I'm sure it's great. It's brilliant non white-boy shit from the best decade in music ever--you can't beat that!

Gilberto Gil with Gal Costa - "Sai do Sereno"
Jaime Alem and Nair De Candia - "Passara"
Alceu Valenca - "Punhal de Prata"

Of course sometimes you want to listen to white-boy shit, and that's fine. I was listening to The Promise Ring the other day and I'm ok with that. You could also do worse than Young Marble Giants' lone official album, 1980's Colossal Youth, originally issued by Rough Trade and recently issued again as a 3-CD set (including 7"s, demos, and a Peel Session) by Domino--although it's maybe not so much white-boy as it is white-girl, and not so much white as it is English (as in England). Young Marble Giants' work comes straight out of the sparse, intimate, sing-songy wing of the post-punk library--as Simon Reynolds describes it in the liner notes, "music by introverts, for introverts" and "the urge to cut loose checked by a native reserve and inhibition" and other comments that are totally correct. I would also add that it's music for evenings and early mornings ONLY, and that "Eating Noddemix" could pass for a Lily Allen demo.

Young Marble Giants - "Music For Evenings" (from Colossal Youth)
Young Marble Giants - "Eating Noddemix" (from Colossal Youth)
Young Marble Giants - "Cakewalking" (from the Final Day 7")

I like the Black Lips' "It Feels Alright" a lot, maybe or definitely because it contains the phrase "magic city titties". I like Black Sabbath's "Shock Wave" because it's like Sabbath covering Boston. It's the best of both worlds! Fitness freaks, check out Fantastic Family Fitness Fun, Session 1. Cool down with Dr. Dog covering REM. Look around and you can find Kaki King doing a cover with one of the Tegan and Saras.

Monday, October 08, 2007

I looked up and then looked down.
I keep going back and forth on the new Les Savy Fav album, Let's Stay Friends. On the one hand, it's a pretty good record--the songs are catchy, it's a major improvement over their last full-length (2001's Go Forth) in almost every way imaginable, and it even bests some of the more recent material from their Inches collection. You really get the feeling they're at the height of their powers (I could even say, as most other people are saying, that they're the Fugazi of the thing they do). On the other hand, it's not exactly what I wanted. I think what I was hoping for was something akin to their Accidental Deaths 7" (aka the Pop Frenzy Tour EP), released in somewhat limited numbers in 2006. Opting out of their usual crazed, verbose party punk and delving into a comparatively mellow, straightforward, almost meditative consideration of random death scenes resulted in two of the most compelling songs in their canon. On "Hit By Car" they take a mid-tempo look at a pedestrian getting struck by a passing car and feeling "like sea sprayed in the air from the blow-hole of some whale somewhere" before gliding out for two minutes without a word from vocalist Tim Harrington. On "Hit By Train" they sound like another band entirely, the only dead giveaways being Harrington's vocals and Seth Jabour's by-now unmistakable and incredible guitar work (he somehow manages to make his guitar sound like an oncoming subway train hurtling down the tracks). It's really striking, and I gotta believe a full album of stuff like the Deaths record would have been tits. But like I said, Let's Stay Friends does have its special moments. "Pots & Pans" is a good "something is very, very wrong here"-style opening salvo, like a more uplifting "Goodnight For Real", and it boils things down nicely with lines like "Has your skin grown thick from bands that make you sick?/Has your skin grown thick from a thousand stinging pricks?" (couple that with the fact that Pitchfork LOVES them, and interpret it however you want). And as briefly mentioned in one of my last posts, "Raging In the Plague Age" is the best of the best. I guess the thing to keep in mind is that, like the bulk of their catalog and like a lot of the big name shit in the indie world right now, Friends is written for an audience (maybe a particular audience, maybe just an audience period). It's Les Savy Fav trying to present something that'll affect everyone in the room in some way--melodically, intellectually, spiritually, spasmodically, etc.--and succeeding without too much pandering. Who they wrote for on Accidental Deaths (and why) is less clear and, for me, much more intriguing.

Les Savy Fav - "Hit By Car" (from Accidental Deaths)
Les Savy Fav - "Hit By Train" (from Accidental Deaths)
Les Savy Fav - "Pots & Pans" (from Let's Stay Friends)

Ennio Morricone song of the week is "Cavallina A Cavallo", which also features Ilona Staller. Two songs I never thought I'd hear at work are "Weightless Again" and "The Saturday Option". Ian MacKaye is indeed alive and well, and you should re-watch him on Soft Focus to see why that's such a good thing. Oh and I can't remember if I mentioned it before or not, but check out the Weather Report song ("American Tango") at Soul Sides. I was almost in tears just talking about this scene from Extras earlier. Don't forget to click the picture up above for an up-close adventure.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

I don't go for anything drawn with perspec-
tive.

One of the things I really like about the David Candy album Play Power is that it's the 180 degree opposite of what my life in 2007 consists of. It's an audio movie, with David (portrayed by Ian Svenonius) comforting you, detailing his favorite art, recipe, city, and cultural paranoias over beautifully recreated swingin' '60s psych pop and Spanish guitar (provided by Jeremy Butler, John Austin, and friends), and covering some choice '60s soundtracks hits, closing with a rendition of Krzysztof Komeda's "Lullaby From Rosemary's Baby". Again, that's Ian Svenonius singing the lullaby from Rosemary's Baby. Also, I say portrayed because Svenonius described the David Candy album thusly in the Summer 2003 issue of Skyscraper: "David Candy is absolute fantasy. It was a movie that I was asked to be in. Essentially, David Candy is part of a set of character records. It's a fantasy constellation that was scripted. I can't take credit for that." More than anything, Play Power is an ideal album for those already caught up in the NOU/Make Up/Weird War rapture, who want to live in The Umbrellas of Cherbourg rather than hear the guy at work talk about 300 (again), and can be found autographed in your local record store's used bin from time to time.

David Candy - "Incomprehensibly Yours"
David Candy - "redfuschiatamborine&gravel"
David Candy - "Lullaby From Rosemary's Baby"

The best car song of the week was "The Beautiful Ones" and all of Purple Rain. Also, I can't stop my crushes on Farah's "Law of Life" and the new Keyshia Cole song, but I don't know that I really want to. Oh and the Moondog book is available, despite some confusion about the release date. I'm looking at my copy and listening to the accompanying CD as we speak.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

They are the monsters we never became.
Whoops! As usual this is several days/weeks overdue, but it's worth it. First up is Fucked Up's Year Of The Pig 12"--part of their Chinese Zodiac series, which is enough to tell you they're working with an entirely different creative agenda than 99.9% of their punk brethren. In fact, they've spent the better part of their 6+ year career making decidedly gruff rock n roll 'core with an increasingly non-core aesthetic sense, resulting in 5-minutes-or-longer hardcore jams (that, miraculously, don't overstay their welcome), stunning, clean sleeve design work, and intense esoteric conceptual theorizing. I'd only followed them here-and-there for the last couple years, and thought they were decent--a lot to like, not enough to really love--but this 12" is a whole different story. The title track (an epic in 18 minutes and 38 seconds to be exact) is easily the single of the year, and possibly the defining punk moment of the '00s. Their own unorthodox, expansive hardcore language gets stretched even further to somehow fit The Cardigans, Neu!, and an impeccably crafted insight into the existentially crushing human/pig struggle. Every publication and critic on Earth is probably talking about how great this record is (I haven't even mentioned the flip side's shorter rocker "The Black Hats") and how Fucked Up is the only band that matters, and now I'm pretty sure they're all telling the truth.

Fucked Up - "Year Of The Pig"

And speaking of Neu!--I finally heard that Harmonia album (1974's Musik Von Harmonia) I read about in the Freak Scene column, and I think I like parts of it more than Neu! (and honestly, De-Luxe may be even better). Main Neu! dude Michael Rother's collaboration with Cluster dudes Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius is characteristically pretty kraut-y, with a major pro-synth, anti-guitar bent. The motorik beat is only used sparingly ("Dino"), ditched largely in favor of weird keyboard jungle rhythms, pre-rave spasms, or wandering electronic compositions befitting, perhaps, a meditative '70s/'80s Italian thriller--not bad for three Germaniacs plotting out "endless sheets of bliss" or whatever it is Thom Yorke says on the cover of the first Neu! cd. A nice addition to your good, bad, or indifferent krautrock collection.

Harmonia - "Watussi"
Harmonia - "Dino"
Harmonia - "Hausmusik"

I finally got my David Scott Stone credit card CD-R and it sounds like this. He has a new record coming out on PPM soon and seems to be a hero to many, myself included. The best Les Savy Fav song in a while is still "Raging In The Plague Age", but the new record is alright. I feel a little corny liking "The Man Who Sold The World" as much as I do, but that organ and whatever that shaker instrument is and those moany vocals at the end make it hard to be ashamed. Also, check out Pissed Jeans on the radio and the video, and some great dog photos (1, 2).



Sunday, September 09, 2007

I kept on living in my own dream.
Nick Cave kind of nails it in the liner notes to last year's re-issue of Karen Dalton's final album, 1971's In My Own Time. He forgoes the historical review/significance-in-the-lost-folk-pantheon route taken by Lenny Kaye and the shitty poetry route taken by Devendra Banhart, and instead talks about listening to "Something On Your Mind" over and over, how much he likes her voice, and the album itself being inextricably linked to a very specific time and place in his life--more or less exactly what I would have said, our experiences with the record being almost identical. Granted, his "time and place" was an extended stay in Sao Paulo, Brazil some years back after a Bad Seeds tour, while mine was driving my grandmother through the back roads between my parents' house in Newark and her new apartment in Clifton Springs last fall, trying to shake off what felt at the time like a monumental, crushing personal defeat. But still, the record had a similar impact, and I imagine the Cave and Werts experience is not unlike that of anyone who spends some time with Dalton's follow-up to her also-great, surreptitiously-recorded debut (1969's It's So Hard To Tell Who's Going To Love You The Best). You lock into "Something On Your Mind" because it's so classic and starts off with that awesome, kind of distorted bass count-off, and you listen to it like 100 times before you even get to the other songs. And you maybe think the other songs are alright, and that a couple of the cover choices are questionable ("When A Man Loves A Woman" being linked with Michael Bolton and lame Andy Garcia/Meg Ryan movies in your mind). But at some point you realize that her voice is a fucking saxophone sound, that all the songs you may have thought were filler-ish are actually pretty good, and that she was such a skilled interpreter of other peoples' songs that nobody will ever care that she never recorded a single original composition. I mean, I'm pretty sure that's the universal In My Own Time experience.

Karen Dalton - "Something On Your Mind"
Karen Dalton - "In A Station"
Karen Dalton - "Are You Leaving For The Country"

I should have mentioned this earlier but--yes, there's a new Soiled Mattress song up on their myspace place, and yes, their upcoming EP is called Honk Honk Bonk!. Also, compilations can be pretty good. Thai Pop Spectacular has Onuma Singsiri's "Mae Kha Som Tum (Papaya Salad Merchant)" and other songs with equally great names. After Dark opens with maybe the best Glass Candy song I've ever heard, called "Rolling Down The Hills (Spring Demo)". And if you haven't checked out Oliver Wang's Soul Symphony mix at his Soul Sides page, then you need to get on that (and if you can clue me in as to the full tracklist, please get on that, as well!). If you only have room on your drive for one side, I'd go with Side B, but Side A is no slouch.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Mysteries of the unknown.
I did a lot of unwanted manual labor today and now there's an unearthly glow in my room, so this is probably a good time to talk about what I'm going to talk about. First up is Joe Meek and The Bluemen's I Hear A New World, which I finally got around to hearing after months of casually re-reading Meek's profile in The Rock Snob's Dictionary, the perfect snide manual of things I'm compelled to investigate (next up: Porter Wagoner!). Of course, some people will say Meek "sprayed stardust upon pop aspirants of no discernible talent" (not literally, I don't think, but check it out) and some will say he was "a pioneering English record producer and songwriter acknowledged as one of the world's first and most imaginative independent producers". The truth is both, and with his 1960 solo debut, he fashioned something of a haunting, reverbed-out space surf concept album, and by that I mean something of an ambient Servotron record overseen by David Lynch. Not necessarily for everybody, and at times not even for me, particularly during the chipmunk-ish sections of "Entry Of The Globbots" and "March Of The Dribcots" (although, oddly, the title track doesn't bother me). But the instrumental sections are pretty warped and beautiful, and work well outside of any vague outer-space narrative.

Joe Meek and The Bluemen - "I Hear A New World"
Joe Meek and The Bluemen - "Valley Of No Return"
Joe Meek and The Bluemen - "The Bublight"

Also, I finally figured out why James Chance and The Contortions' "Dish It Out" kept popping into my head at work. I re-read the lyrics and found lines like "Sick of being on the losing end" and "I wanna be the one to tell you when to start and when you've had enough", which I guess means that my brain was subconsciously cuing up a song to reinforce what my brain already knew--in this case that I'm overworked at a crapfest of a job that I nonetheless sort of need. This isn't to say that "Dish It Out" is James Chance's "Clocked In", because it really isn't, but it is raging and unhinged in a way that even Flag dudes would find intense. The other Contortions tracks from the Brian Eno-curated No New York comp. (none of which are are available on the majorly excellent Irresistible Impulse box set) offer up variations on the same crazed atonal funk desperation, with even more incredible lyrics (see "Flip Your Face"), and get more weirdly essential with every listen.

James Chance and The Contortions - "Dish It Out"
James Chance and The Contortions - "Flip Your Face"
James Chance and The Contortions - "I Can't Stand Myself"

I didn't know how much I liked Harry Pussy until I heard "Mandolin", off their Tour or Fuck You or Fuck Blue Men LP. Thank you Chunklet for posting the whole B-side and other things. I forgot how much I liked ESG until I heard "UFO" again. I should have just done a whole post on them. Glen E. Friedman's book about Fugazi is out and you should get it, but don't forget Pat Graham has an awesome book out, too, called Silent Pictures. Check out samples and more samples, and order from Akashic--you might accidentally wind up with an autographed copy! Summer vacation/embarrassing laziness is over, more regular posting is just barely beginning.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Big fucking shit. Right now, man.
Apologies at the outset for not getting this up sooner. "Sitting in a living room gathering dust" wasn't just the title of my last post--it's my fucking life!! Apologies also at the outset for talking about way too much stuff in this post. For starters, the new Budos Band record (The Budos Band II) is out and, like a scorpion, it will probably kill you awesomely. It's not too far off from Budos Band I, but this time you're in Dry Dry Desert as opposed to Lavalava Island (you know what I mean). Unexpected dangers and vaguely Egyptian intrigue await! "Ride Or Die" and "Budos Rising" give off an especially ominous nighttime heat, while "His Girl" acts as a tropical oasis about halfway through. If you feel you could get down with some funkier Ethiopiques stuff by way of Staten Island, you will be in Afro-horn heaven (hell?) here.

The Budos Band - "Budos Rising"
The Budos Band - "Ride Or Die"
The Budos Band - "His Girl"

And not to keep being the cheesy instrumental guy, but Sven Libaek's soundtrack work is also pretty killer (this time by shark attack!). You probably heard some of his work in The Life Aquatic, and as Wes Anderson observes pretty accurately in the liner notes to the Aquatic soundtrack, "Libaek's music is magical and dated in the most appealing ways." Inner Space: The Lost Film Music Of Sven Libaek, issued by obscure soundtrack and library music obsessive Johny Trunk and his Trunk Records (who you can also thank for the Flexi-Sex collection ), compiles songs from four of Norwegian-born/Australia-based (Australgian?) Libaek's major film and TV soundtrack works of the late '60s and early '70s, including The Set, Nature Walkabout, To Ride A White Horse, and the 1974 underwater series from pioneering filmmakers Valerie and Ron Taylor, Inner Space. I've been really into the Nature Walkabout and Inner Space materal, but it's all great, particularly if you're into jet-setting under the sea or surfing through extreme wildlife. This would also be perfect on a tape with The Gentle Rain on the flip side, although you'd need a 110-120 minute tape.

Sven Libaek - "Sounds Of The Deep"
Sven Libaek - "Dark World"
Sven Libaek - "Desert"

The new Bone Awl tape is great (the even newer one is probably great, too), and the first song is pretty good. It's no "These Days Are Marked" but it is "Cassetto", kind of. I also can't stop giving a crap about alternate takes of Beatles songs I never gave a crap about before, like "I'm Looking Through You" and "Penny Lane". The first take of "Tomorrow Never Knows" is worth a listen, as well. I don't know if "Friday Night At the Drive In Bingo" is wonderful or horrible, but it's definitely one or the other or both. You should watch this phonetic Dutch video, and then follow it up with Jordy, and then follow that up with Derek Erdman's great photo journal of his trip to Graceland, if you want to be in awe continuously. Summer is basically over, but fall is looking good.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Sitting in a living room gathering dust.
So yeah, this is my co-worker Jake's album. I know it says Steve Curry, but everyone calls him Jake, and that's how I was introduced to him. I don't know a whole lot about Jake, his recording process, or any kind of Latin back stories--all I know is this was recorded in 2000 and that his son (Steven Curry II, who also works at the post office and put out a record kind of recently with his nu-metal rock band, Cry To The Blind) just had it professionally burned and put together by some company he found on the internet. I also know that Jake carries one of my least favorite routes (City 10), looks about 75 but is actually in his late 50s, and is one of the nicest, funniest, kindliest people in the world, and one of my favorite people in the office. The album itself is all instrumental, and has a nice Gary Wilson-y, lite jazz vibe with enough Caribbean beach grooves to garner him a Saturday night spot on BET J. Fair warning, though--if you can't deal with some pure joy, you might not be able to hang with this.

Steve Curry - "E Flat Salsa" (from Latin Journeys)
Steve Curry - "Columbia" (from Latin Journeys)
Steve Curry - "Tapajos" (from Latin Journeys)

Also, if "The Anvil Will Fall" doesn't tear you apart completely, you are a cold, dead stone of a human. The latest Harvey Milk re-issues (My Love Is Higher Than Your Assessment Of What My Love Could Be and The Pleaser) are out and you need them in your life pronto. You also could do worse than "Tezeta", "Statue Of Liberty", and "Soft As Snow (But Warm Inside)". I think I just have a weird thing for that last one. Oh check this out, too.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

"The line about magazines still applies."
I really thought that Raincoats song I liked a few weeks ago was a fluke, but, along with a cold, I apparently came down with a British post-punk jones that's had me craving PiL and Wire, freaking out over Bowie's Low and "Heroes" (pre-post-punk blueprints!) again, and making specific plans to dig further into The Pop Group and This Heat because I only know them tangentially. But the record that's been hittin' me the hardest has been Swell Maps' 1980 grand finale, Jane From Occupied Europe. Swell Maps' work towards the end of the '70s was something of an inspiration for the post-punk art-ness that burgeoned and mutated well into the '80s, consolidating The Buzzcocks and Can into one ramshackle home-schooled savant punk drone attack, and effectively prefiguring the noisier, goofier end of indie rock (Sonic Youth, early Pavement, etc). And the nice thing is that it doesn't fall prey to all the sometimes overbearing post-punk affectations--there are no self-serious conceptual put-ons, the scrappy amateur approach isn't a liability, and it rarely feels political, and even then in only the vaguest sense (just oblique references to World War II and, in the case of "Border Country", the Welsh Border Wars of the 1400s). I honestly can't tell what they're going on about most of the time, either because the vocals are mixed weird or because the words I can pick out seem abstract or really simple at the same time, but they always make it sound right. Jane is sort of to their 1979 debut, A Trip To Marineville, what Chairs Missing is to Pink Flag--an immediate follow-up that's a bit less brazen, but arguably more compelling as a full piece. Secretly Canadian reissued both albums a couple years back with bonus tracks (though not as many as the Mute reissues from the late '80s) and some great liner notes, so check up on it because these few songs are just the beginning.

Swell Maps - "Let's Buy A Bridge"
Swell Maps - "Border Country"
Swell Maps - "Cake Shop Girl"
Swell Maps - "...Vs. The Mangrove Delta Plan"

I missed the Hitchcock movie last week at the Dryden, so "Shadow Of a Doubt" will have to do. Also the new Yesterday's New Quintet album sounds alright so far, and "Cold Nights and Rainy Days" sums up this week pretty well, AND it even reminds me of my co-worker Jake's album that he just gave to me and everyone else in the office the other day. I really honestly like it a lot and am kind of blown away by it. I'll probably talk about it in my next post. It's called Latin Journeys. Oh and Eric Fensler did a pretty good Ariel Pink video, while I'm thinking of it.

Monday, July 09, 2007

All you gotta do for that guy is wink your eye.
I'm happy to report I haven't yet keeled over from heatstroke and exhaustion (lord knows I've been trying), and to celebrate that not-keeling-over I'd like blab about a couple records from the "albums I own that are kind of rare" category. First up is Television's Live At The Old Waldorf, recorded at the end of June 1978 in San Francisco and issued (in an edition of 5000) for the first time on the Rhino Handmade label back in 2003, around the same time that Rhino Regular re-issued Television's first two masterpieces (1977's Marquee Moon and 1978's Adventure). Their set includes a good mix of Moon and Adventure hits, as well as an awesome take on "Little Johnny Jewel" and a decent encore presentation of "I Can't Get No Satisfaction". But what really makes this a mind-scrambler must-have is how hard they ROCK SHIT. The street-delicate classic rock of their studio work gets turned all the way up (they up the fucking low-down!), making for some crunchy guitar/big beat poetry punk elegance of the highest order. If it's possible, check the transition from "The Dream's Dream" to "Venus".

Television - "The Dream's Dream" (from Live At The Old Waldorf)
Television - "Venus" (from Live At The Old Waldorf)
Television - "Little Johnny Jewel" (from Live At The Old Waldorf)

The other record I want to highlight briefly is a record I don't technically own and don't want to credit anyone with introducing me to, on the off chance it may get her into trouble. But suffice it to say, my burned copy of The South Indian Film Music of Vijaya Anand is an invaluable addition to my collection. Whatever you imagine when you look at the image above is exactly what you get, plus so much more. Fake drum beats, foreign languages, a style that borrows well from Western pop music but is definitely not Western pop music--like a loose translation of American rock n roll crossed with a Euro-disco crossed with Dhalsim's theme music (Yoga Fire!). I will freely admit to enjoying this quite a bit, although it's essentially what you'll hear if you go to an Indian restaurant, and may even literally be what I heard at an Indian restaurant in Georgetown a little over a year ago. Also, if you have a bunch of drunk friends at your house late at night sometime in August, and you throw this record on, strange things will happen--I have seen it!

Vijaya Anand - "Aatavu Chanda (Dancing is Beautiful)"
Vijaya Anand - "Prema Rudaayade (Loving Hearts)"
Vijaya Anand - "Neeve Nanna (Only You Were Mine)"

Man, what else? I like Bryan Ferry's take on "Simple Twist of Fate", and I also like The Long Blondes' "Autonomy Boy". I actually like that What's Your Rupture? stuff more than I thought I would. The Black Lips' "A Lion With Wings" hasn't left my head much either, and Mika Miko has a good video, as well. Oh and did you see another twenty-something kid named Matt wrote about Brighten The Corners? Sure it's insightful, but where is the irrelevent prom info?? Actually, who cares about that--check out Mark McCoy's drawings. Holy shit (do some scrolling).

Friday, June 22, 2007

I knew I had to rise above it all, or drown in my own shit.
I guess when I said Friday, I meant the following Monday. Also, all these songs--the best songs of the remaining moments of June 2007--can be found on accompanying divShare pages which, in addition to hosting them theoretically until the end of time, will allow you to listen to the songs on one of their embedded players before you decide whether or not to download. Try 'em before you don't buy 'em, but hopefully do buy them eventually because they're worth your money!

Kati Kovacs - "Szólj rám, ha hangosan énekele" (from Kati Kovacs)
Also known as Kovacs Kati, and from an album that may also be called Rock and Roller. This song is fucking great--Hungarian psych funk pop that sounds kind of like Abba if Abba threw in guitar solos that absolutely destroy (or, I guess, if the male half of Abba was Locomotiv GT)--and came to my attention via the sadly dormant Spiked Candy site (the song is also downloadable there, with a little more info about her). You could probably just ignore the other songs on this list and go with this one, and I would totally understand.

The Screamers - "She's The Girl", "The Beat Goes On" (from Demos 1977-78)
I forget what blog posted this record up, but they're god's own personal warriors, whoever they are. This is arty synth-punk from every LA punker's favorite barely recorded band, sounding like James Chance and Suicide doing covers of each others' songs. Kind of what all those art-damaged ex-hardcore kids tried to do in the late '90s/early '00s, only not annoying.

Timothy McNealy - "Easy Easy Easy" (from Fallin' Off The Reel, Vol. 1)
Truth and Soul's collection of vinyl-only singles from a couple years back is such a staple in my car, it's made its way into the "permanent rotation" glovebox along with The Replacements' Let It Be and Sabbath's Paranoid. I refuse to drive without the classics, vehicle registration, and insurance card! This track originally comes off the B-side of McNealy's "K.C. Stomp" 45, which was either recorded in the early '70s or sometime recently. It's hard to tell the new-school old-schoolers from the old-school old-schoolers on this thing, but either way it's a perfect mellow soul joint for those with a strict "good-vibes only" policy.

Ennio Morricone - "Trafelato" (from Crime and Dissonance)
Crime and Dissonance collects a bunch of Morricone's psych-y, free jazz-y, funky soundtrack work and it KILLS, as do the film stills in the liner notes. This song starts out frightening before turning into two minutes of potential Wu-Tang beats, and can be found in the 1971 film Giornata Nera Per L'Ariete.

Them - "Mystic Eyes", "Don't Look Back", "Baby Please Don't Go" (from The Story of Them featuring Van Morrison)
I got obsessed with Them (Van Morrison's pre-Van Morrison band) once I figured out they were the ones responsible for the version of Dylan's "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue", as featured in Basquiat and probably most recognizable to fans of Beck's "Jack-Ass". These three jams originally appeared on Them's first record--either Angry Young Them or Here Comes The Night (or just Them), depending on which side of the pond you were on, and are right in line with the best of the mid-'60s UK blues revivalists/obsessives. Actually, maybe "Baby Please Don't Go" wasn't on the first record. It may have just been a single.

Black Moth Super Rainbow - "Forever Heavy" (from Dandelion Gum)
This is kind of a guilty pleasure pick. "Forver Heavy" is some kind of psych-stoner jam done entirely on perfect-sounding synths, which is awesome, but the vocoder vocals are a big turn-off. I can handle it on a Daft Punk song, but not here. Thankfully they're not on the whole track. Also, beware--the full album is this one idea run into the ground like 15 times. BUM-OUT.

Funkadelic - "Maggot Brain" (from Maggot Brain)
I can't usually stomach guitar histrionics in that bluesy rock kind of way, but I can make a very easy exception for Eddie Hazel. On Maggot Brain's opener, he mellows out and destroys your brain for 10 minutes as a way of expanding on George Clinton's initial state of the world/mind/ass address.

The Kinks - "Lavender Hill" (from The Great Lost Kinks Album)
I've never investigated The Kinks because it seems like you can be either vaguely aware of their hits or a completely obsessive nerd about them--there's no middle ground. I don't know if I want to be a nerd about them or hang out with nerds about them, but this song is really great.

The Raincoats - "Balloonacy" (from The Kitchen Tapes)
Ramones - "Loudmouth" (from Ramones)
I thought I was basically done with arty post-punk weirdo bands, but I guess not. This live Raincoats record is better than I was expecting--subtle and funky, like a slightly less-together Talking Heads. The Ramones song is one of my favorites of theirs, and sometimes I dream about Ten Tents covering it and making the last part that's kind of a hardcore breakdown go on way too long.

The Velvet Underground - "Satellite Of Love (demo)" (from Peel Slowly and See)
This isn't quite as incredible as the version on Transformer, but it sounds pretty good if you listen to it right after listening to Loaded, which is probably why they sequenced it that way on the last disc of the VU box set. The basic elements are all there (plus an intro that was later scrapped, and slightly different lyrics), waiting patiently for a couple years to go by and for David Bowie to get involved.

The Breeders - "Oh!", "Doe" (from Pod)
It would have been awesome if riot grrrl sounded like The Breeders, instead of trash-punk that, in most cases, wasn't necessarily as listenable as it was politically and socially right-on. Also, does anyone else see an almost direct connection from The Breeders and early Liz Phair to the Smart Went Crazy/Beauty Pill/Soccer Team thing in DC?

Dennis Wilson - "Thoughts of You" (from Pacific Ocean Blue)
Pacific Ocean Blue--the long-out-of-print solo record by former Beach Boys drummer Dennis Wilson--probably deserves its own post, but it's been talked about so much and I have basically nothing to add to the discussion, other than that it's pretty interesting and mostly really good. This song, which starts out on some proto-Wilco low-key throaty ballad shit, gets incredible just after the opening notes of the M*A*S*H theme song kick in. "Thoughts Of You" is also a good indication of the heavy melancholy/bummage found throughout most of the album. Even the cover shot is pretty heavy.

Holy lord did I post a lot of stuff. I also want to shout out William Berger's Cassette Culture Revisited posts on Beware of the Blog. Lots of cool, obscure noise tapes from the '80s, when band names were great (JFK, Wall Drug, etc.) and underground culture seemed pretty weird and genius. Check out the video for "Teenage Riot" for some of that same feeling. Also, songs from the last couple posts (Shuggie Otis/Budos Band/Jehu) will be posted up anew on divShare pages over the next couple days.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I ain't burnt, just golden brown.
How lazy can a punk get?? The answer is lazier and lazier, by the milisecond. I'm going to try to make up for it by posting TWICE this week, sort of to punish myself but mainly because there are several things I've been liking all at once. First up is some double daring, starting with this Budos Band record, full of even more perfect '60s/'70s instrumental soul/funk jams released within the last couple of years (via Daptone and their time machine), on the El Michels tip but with a little more of an Afro-beat thing going on (and I've heard the beginning of each side of the Bread and Circuits LP, so I know what I'm talking about). It also features, dare I say, better volcano cover art than Unfuckwithable. And check out the cover of their next record! This should have been on the horizontal summer soundtrack list I made in my last post, along with obscure '60s girl groups.

The Budos Band - "Up From The South" (from The Budos Band)
The Budos Band - "Budos Theme" (from The Budos Band)
The Budos Band - "Ghost Walk" (from The Budos Band)


I've been rockin' Drive Like Jehu's Yank Crime a lot, too, and I think I'm going to add it to the punk rock curriculum I secretly hope to foist on my sisters' kids. Maybe it's me angling to be the cool older brother I never got to be (and not the weird, goofy uncle I surely am), or me looking for at least one anti-most-family-functions, pro-listening-to-Charles-Bronson accomplice. But regardless, kids of the future are going to have to learn about '90s hardcore sooner or later, and I'm reasonably sure I'm the most qualified Werts for the job. Yank Crime may even be the best record to start with--it hits pretty hard with dirty, vaguely southern math punk bombs constantly exploding or threatening to explode, and balances out with discordant slow jams that eventually erupt into shouts of "DO YOU COMPUTE?!" and "ALOHA! SUIT UP!". Meanwhile, it's still pretty accessible--compared to their San Diegan brethren from that era--without turning into an "alternative rock Jawbox nightmare", as someone from Harriet the Spy once put it (put this and some Chavez on a tape and you'd be pretty much set for the day!). Maybe I'm crazy, but I think that's sort of an important thing to pass on--that even in an often impossibly crappy subculture, great things are still occasionally possible.

Drive Like Jehu - "Here Come The Rome Plows" (from Yank Crime)
Drive Like Jehu - "Golden Brown" (from Yank Crime)
Drive Like Jehu - "Luau" (from Yank Crime)

#1 Hit Song of the day is The Bitter Sweets' "What a Lonely Way to Start the Summertime", which I cannot get out my head. Full credit goes to T. R. Farren for introducing me to this. Ask him about Brute Force! #2 hit song is "Markos", courtesy of Goblin. Some of the Suspiria soundtrack is great and some of it is music used in a film. Oh shit, check out old Meat Puppets sessions! Do it!! Random songs post with picture of somebody in front of a tape machine coming this Friday, probably.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Here's a pencil pad, I'm gonna spread some information.
Lest you think there's only one great thing (go to just shy of the exact middle of the clip) associated with the word "shuggie", fucking check Inspiration Information the fuck out. Shuggie Otis--the psych-blues Doogie Howser of the '70s--delivers his last studio album, replete with Stevie Wonder soft funk, keyboard preset soul jams, Debarge vocals, and a 1970s future-vision hypothesis that's so intimate and perfect it will make you hate the actual, crummy future that much more. The Luaka Bop cd reissue from a couple years back even includes a few tracks from Freedom Flight (best album cover since Never Say Die!, or ever) to sweeten the already sweet deal. A happier, snappier endless Shuggie(/black metal/No Age/yeh yeh/Goblins) summer 2007 awaits, and I'm ready to dive/cannonball in.

Shuggie Otis - "Inspiration Information" (from Inspiration Information)
Shuggie Otis - "Island Letter" (from Inspiration Information)
Shuggie Otis - "XL-30" (from Inspiration Information)
Shuggie Otis - "Pling!" (from Inspiration Information)

Videos!!!!!! Danzig as performed by Legion of Rock Stars. Vincent Collins' hallucinogenic cartoons. Bat For Lashes' horror movie bikes. A tan Lukas Haas at Andre 3000's pretend wedding. Song!!!!!!! An epic (15 minutes!), moving Vothana track from Hoang Gia that he probably doesn't want you to hear, or me to post. Seriously, if you can't get down with horribly anti-semitic (I think?), Vietnamese black metal, you're more than likely a fucking PANTYWAIST.