Monday, December 11, 2017

Life Is Hard, But 2017 Was Harder: Best Of 2017 Intro

As the days have grown short, the nights crisp with winter moon's glow, and the snow blankets our idyllic hamlet in a quiet calm, we take this time to cozy up by the fire, sip on a mug of mulled cider, and contemplate the year that was.

The annual parade of judgement we dub "Best Of"!

But...what if upon reflection you determine that many of your "best of's" are actually "best was'"? You read the fine print to discover that your favorite record of 2017 should of been your favorite record of 2016, but you were just too slow to hear it in time? Well, in that case, you would be me, for I am that person. As I culled my list of favorites for this past year, I came to the shocking conclusion that a handful of them were past their due date, and while I have in the past, I could not in good conscience include them in the forthcoming, fabled and highly respected Best Of 2017.

So here are a handful of those records that I slept on last year, that I shouldn't have:

Autolux - Pussy's Dead

This band is a real mystery to me, not in any spooky way, or like, they are trying to cover up a murder, but more in a "how the fuck did I never hear of them before?". Perfectly executed warm and fuzzy, shoegaze-y psych-pop songs that hold a sinister undercurrent...the way I like. Everything should be sinister.
If you like Slowdive, Swervedriver, My Bloody Valentine, mixed with The Warlocks, with maybe Tame Impala, Radiohead and True Widow in the mix...this one is essential. All their records are really essential, actually. Get them!


Beat Drun Juel - Suppressor

From the finest forges in Chicago (although I hear a little Louisville in there), this band truly are power where you need. They swing hard with attacking, super tight instrumentation, leaving space on top for Donna Polydoros' vocals to soar/screech/roar. The distinctive voice is one thing, but the songs themselves are a propulsive lurch, and when those elements come together it creates a damaged cabaret of darkness and revenge.


Bodyfather - Heavy Rest

Atlanta underdogs, who fly perpetually under the radar, but continue to churn out wiry noise rock (sort of adjacent a to a smarter version of hardcore), that pushes and pulls like Drive Like Jehu (or, if you're an Freemasonry). Hoping this band pulls together something new in 2018...and that it gets heard outside of East Atlanta.


Cherubs - Fist In The Air

Straight up, I must be losing my step, cause I had zero idea this record came out until it popped up as a "recommendation" on Spotify. Spotify. That's how I'm getting my hot tips these fucking algorithms. Blade Runner shit.
So, this is only three songs, then two remixes (sadly no Dusseldorf House Mix), one by Shit And Shine, and one by Tim Harrington (Les Savy Fav), spread out over two 7"s. And the title track (also the subject of the remixes) picks up where '2 Ynfynyty' left off the year before, which is good and all, but when the first five seconds of "Donkey Suite" clock you across the back of your's just about fucking perfect.  Seriously perfect.


Easy Prey - Easy Prey

Only two songs, but good heavens, they get the point across. This band are positioning themselves into a long and distinguished (like my johnson) lineage of Austin, Texas noise rock that takes leans heavily on the "make the bass sound like a subterranean explosion, then turn everything up real loud and get fucked". It works. Tried and true formula that works. I'm certain their forefathers in Ed Hall and Johnboy and Cherubs are proud.


Fake Limbs - Matronly

Yeah man, you wanna take the Jesus Lizard template and pile on some nastiness? Cool. You should do that. Drive your coiling riffs straight through the back wall with a hefty gut punch...all day. It's your God given right to batter everyone within earshot into a grease stain with your dense wallop. I support it!
If you get weird with Hawks (rip), then Fake Limbs will do you right. Plus, bonus points for best song title I've heard in a good minute, "Grudge Wapner".


So Pitted - neo

When a band can come across this big, ugly, and mean, I'm in. I'll always love a good tangled squall of distorto-thud. It's as if you could play your old Nirvana record and old Distorted Pony record at the same time, but with a silver dollar laid atop the stylus to juuuuuust slow it down a hair and give it that fucked up touch.


Wrong -Wrong

Yeah, so it's Helmet's drunk there anything wrong with that (pun not intended)?! Can you think of anything negative to say about the band 16 performing the unreleased album Helmet wrote between Strap It On and Meantime? Cause I can't.


Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Superchunk - Tossing Seeds (Singles 89-91)

Label: Merge
Year: 1992

For those that keep up with this blog (hi Mom!), you may have previously been aware that I take things of North Carolinian origin quite seriously. Bordering on unnecessarily serious. Reckless even.
You may have also been previously aware that in my frequent (also unnecessary, and reckless) compulsion to rank the musical output of the Tarheel State, Superchunk gets left out of the top echelon of bands, the rarefied air I keep reserved for many of their contemporaries (hearts to you, Archers of Loaf, Raymond Brake, Polvo, Small, Pipe, Erectus Monotone, and on and on).
You are paying attention? Right? Mom?
So, what is it about Superchunk that they are can't quite crack the illustrious bowels of my personal favorites? Are they bad?
No. Of course not (and my bowels are pretty great too..if you're curious). Superchunk, had they lived in some other college town, anywhere else, would have been "the best band in town" (except maybe in Madison, WI, or Athens, GA, or Austin, TX, or...), and they would find themselves rubbing elbows with the Top Ten bands of that particular town's nerdy-ass bloggers list. They were a good band. They played fun, amped up, punky pop songs (please note: not pop-punk, but punky pop...there is a real distinction with actual consequences). Their shows were fun, and loud, and energetic.They were a good band.
And I want to give them their due, here. Which is why I offer up an anthology of some of their first records, conveniently collected for easier consumption, including the "hit", 'Slack Motherfucker'. Which incidentally, is a legit "hit".

Hail NC indie rock.


Sunday, December 3, 2017

cathedral - cosmic requiem

label: earache
released: 1994

as a matter of fact you do have room in your life for a 23 minute psychedelic doom song.
don't argue.


black sabbath - 8.5.75 - convention hall - asbury park,nj

it's black sabbath being black sabbath in front of a crowd of people that paid to see black sabbath be black sabbath in front of them.

1 - supertzar/killing yourself to live
2 - hole in the sky
3 - snowblind
4 - symptom of the universe
5 - war pigs
6 - megalomania
7 - sabbra cadabra/sometimes i'm happy
8 - supernaut
9 - iron man
10 - orchid/rock & roll doctor/don't start (too late)
11 - black sabbath
12 - spiral architect
13 - embryo/children of the grave
14 - paranoid


Saturday, December 2, 2017

v/a - our band could be your life: a tribute to d boon and the minutemen

label: little brother records
released: 1996

it's some bands that you like covering a band that you like.

this was posted by the guy that isn't me a few years back.
and this is what he said:

"Let's start by me telling you this, and it might rub you the wrong way...but..."I don't think the Minutemen were all that great". They were "fine" I guess. And maybe I was too stupid to "get it", or whatever, but ultimately they did and/or do, very little for me. They have a handful of really good songs, and a bunch of alright songs, and fair amount of shitty songs. Not a bad record per se, just not essential to these ears.
A lot of people are way into the Minutemen, and think they were very "important" or something to that extent, and that's fine, I'm sure they are very important to some folks. No one here is saying they're no good, or that they didn't contribute to this or that, or that we can't collectively respect what they accomplished in their time on earth.
I just like fIREHOSE better, that's all."

and you probably remember seeing the aftermath of all that on the news.
it was like that one scene in APOCALYPSE NOW where everything is all quiet and they're just on the boat sailin' along and reading the letters and whatnot from home....

we still can't seem to get the stink out of the office.

when it comes down to it: i prefer the minutemen.
that's right.
i said it.
did fIREHOSE write "little man with a gun in his hand"?
did fIREHOSE write "the anchor"?
did fIREHOSE get chosen to provide the theme song to JACKASS?
does fIREHOSE have a tribute album?
no and no and no and no.
you want to fight about it?
you'll just have to track me down.
and in order for that to happen you're going to have to pay the $5 for the map of bushes in your town.
or maybe you could just wait in the bushes outside your house.
i might show up.
i might not show up.
i could be in the bush that you're standing in right now.

the listing of the tracks


god lives underwater - self-titled

label: american
released: 1995

blah blah blah.
blah blah blah blah?
blah blah blah blah!
blah blah blah.
blah blah blah blah blaaaaaaaah,blah?
nine inch blahs.
alice in blahs.


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

sugartooth - the sounds of solid

label: DGC
released: 1997

once upon a time there was a band that had gone futon shopping. and when they went to go and bring the brand new futon back home the old futon didn't like it. it didn't like it one bit. it was always trying to get the new futon to do things that it didn't want to do. they robbed a gas station once. you probably heard about it on the news. it had gotten to the point where the new futon was scared for its life. it wasn't sleeping. it wasn't eating. it couldn't even take a shower unless someone was sitting on the toilet. so the band decided that they needed to sell the old futon. sure. they'd had alot of fun together. they'd watched their first adult movie together. they'd discovered that they all liked having maple syrup spilled on themselves. and then there were the things that are written in that diary with the lock on it that no one likes to talk about. so they sold the futon and wrote a song about it and buried the diary in an undisclosed location. the end.

what had started out as a band weaned on soundgarden went into a somewhat different direction once their drummer (joey castillo) left to go and play with danzig (even though the credit goes to agent orange drummer dusty watson he shows up on this album in some spots. as does a drum machine.)

and rumor has it that the old futon is somewhere out there. so the next time you let your futon out to run around in the yard just be sure to keep a close eye on it.


v9r9d - the boom/bip ep

label: self-released
released: 2002

this here is a band that existed once upon a time.
they were a band from minneapolis,mn.
this was a band made up 2 fellas.
one fella played the bass.
the other fella played the drums.
neither one of them sang.
the bass player went on to play in a band called the yoleus.
the drummer went on to other things as well.
i'm not really sure what.
but it more than likely probably involves pounding on things.

if'n you were to come across this here thing at a music store it would probably have a sticker on it that says "for fans of godheadsilo".
they would also play nicely with some gay witch abortion.
and a less busy hella.
and a less caustic lightning bolt.
don caballero was there.
the melvins were just kind of hanging out.
as were the dazzling killmen.
and primus.
maybe they were all there.
maybe they weren't.
maybe i'm just telling you all of this to get you into the van.


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

v/a - faust: music from the original motion picture

label: roadrunner records
released: 2000

a so-so soundtrack to a so-so movie.
read the comic instead.
watch SPAWN instead.
watch THE CROW instead.
pick any other movie that involves brian yuzna and watch that instead.

"why are you even posting this then,huh? have you been hitting the nyQuil smoothies again?"

this is getting posted because there's someone out there that's still thinking "fuck,man! i knew that i should've totally picked it up at that garage sale but i only had a dollar and i needed that wig. i needed that fucking wig! you don't know me,bro!"

1 - fear factory - replica
2 - coal chamber - loco
3 - brujeria - colas de rata
4 - sepultura - old earth
5 - type o negative - everyone i love is dead
6 - machine head - take my scars
7 - vision of disorder - by the river
8 - obituary - chopped in half
9 - cradle of filth - from the cradle to enslave
10 - soulfly - bleed
11 - ill nino - nothing's clear
12 - spineshank - asthmatic
13 - sepultura - choke
14 - amen - everything is untrue
15 - glassjaw - babe
16 - nailbomb - for fuck's sake
17 - deicide - bible basher
18 - carnivore - sex and violence
19 - fear factory - timelessness


mindrot - dawning

label: relapse records
released: 1995

doomy doom death doom doom [insert ambient synths here].

would you like to hear about this evening's specials?
this would pair nicely with a nice DREAMS OF THE CARRION KIND by disincarnate and/or THROUGH SILVER IN BLOOD by neurosis.

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