Oct 24, 2011


I never really got how someone who likes rock and roll can dislike girls in rock and roll. I mean, I always thought of rock and roll as the ultimate medium of expression for people who are pissed off about bullshit, and who trudges through more bullshit than a lady? Bratz dolls, Barbie dolls, tanning guns, super-model Tyra Banks hosting a show that's supposed to be "empowering" but is in fact a super-model on television telling you how to wear make-up, constant fashion change-ups encouraging you to buy more clothes, Sex and the fucking City. Jesus, man. Have you ever seen Sex and the City? Here's the way the dialogue works on that show:

Girl 1: I make a statement.
Girl 2: I comment on the statement in a way that all too perfectly typifies my character
Girl 3: I comment on the statement in a way that all too perfectly typifies my character
Girl 4: I comment on the statement in a way that all too perfectly typifies my character

(Repeat ad nauseum until one of them wants to get married/pregnant)

So every time I hear about a new band with any sort of female inclusion, I get pumped, simply for the fact that they have so much more to work with than some dude does ("I have anxiety" "Why doesn't this girl like me" "All my problems are self-inflicted"). And shit, man. Shoppers delivers. The guitars provide a steel wool blanket of noise and the vocals are high pitched pissed off. The lyrics can teeter on some Xiu Xiu shit, but the music is much more approachable, you can play this at a party and not scare away a bunch of your friends.

The dudes over at the record label website describe this band as "queer noise punk," but I can assure you that you don't need to be queer to like this band. I've had the record on at work all day and I cannot get enough. Link goes to aforementioned record label's site, where you can download the album for free.


Sep 24, 2011

Mina - Studio Uno '66

Hey you crumbums. You know I know nothing about music, right? Glacier can attest. A few weeks ago we were in a kitchen listening to the band Orange Juice, and he said "Orange Juice is so good," and I said, "Yeah, it's great," because I thought he was talking about the delicious beverage. I don't know anything about Pink Floyd except that that Dark Side of the Moon record kind of pisses me off and I heard a Syd Barrett song I liked a lot once but I never followed up on it. I only got into Black Flag after college, and by "into" I mean I listen to that album with "Rise Above" on it like once every three months. I listen to Rainer Maria more than I listen to Black Flag, for God's sake. And The Stooges? Without knowing anything, I proclaim "FUCK The Stooges."

I just wanted to go out of the way to say that so that next time someone talks to me and references some artist or song or dude they assume I know about and I just blank out for a little, like I look like I'm about to pass out when you say it, don't worry, it just means I have no idea what the fuck you are talking about. It's not a strike against you, better not be a strike against me, and it might just be a good cue to take a big drink of whatever drink you have in front of you. I like my music like the way I like my coffee: un-canonized and thoroughly clusterfucked.

Anyway! Mina! What a specimen. Through my limited research of this lady she appears to be Italy's Madonna, except she's been around since the Sixties, and she has a much better voice. This is the only record of hers I have, and I only got it after years of listening to "Se Telefonando" on youtube and not being able to find the record online for free. No song on this record gets close to that one song, but it's a nice 60s variety-hour record you can play at anytime for anyone. I got the album off iTunes so I have no idea if this download link will work, but if it doesn't, I'd say this record is worth the brief humiliating act of having iTunes' penis in your mouth.


Aug 31, 2011

The Sidekicks - Weight of Air

A band with all the right stuff to carry the next generation's "awesome powerpop band" title. These guys do all the same things as Piebald, and you gotta be grateful for that, especially when "innovational" these days can mean hardcore/screamo bands using autotune. The first sentence of this review says it all. The second was me trying to come up with more filler. The third sentence was me trying to wrap things up. The fourth was when I realized I dug myself into a hole.


Aug 18, 2011

That Dog. - Totally Crushed Out!

What is the etiquette on blogging about records that have already been blogged about by other blogs. Someone should write a "Gentleman's Guide to Music Blogs," though I'm not sure how many of the people blogging about music are actually gentlemen. I imagine most of them as overweight men married with children who still wear Those Glasses even though they don't really complement fat-old-man face as well as skinny young college kid face.

But enough about our miserable futures. This is a great 90s girl group cut in the same vein as Juliana Hatfield or Elastica. There's a classy smattering of strings throughout the record (opener "Ms. Wrong," "She Doesn't Know How"), two sad acoustic songs that sound like Rivers Cuomo could've sung em and plopped em onto Pinkerton, and a bunch of rocking songs in between.

Hey, is it cicada season? What the fuck.


Aug 8, 2011

Brain Tumors - Tape

There. Check out that image. If I'm reading it correctly, it's telling you that pouring beer on a brain tumor fixes it. How can you not want to take that logic home and snuggle it till you jizz in your pajama pants.

Idunno. Good punk hardcore stuff from Minnesoda. Guitars are crunchy and gnarly. Sort of reminds me of The Dicks, a band you are sort of obligated to like even if you don't care for the tunes.

Anyway, it's a fast listen. Give it a whirl.


Jun 15, 2011

The Bright Lights - Bright Lights

The Bright Lights are friends with punk lo fi noise indie pop brats Boyracer, and you can sort of tell it immediately. Fast catchy guitars, off-putting morose lyrics (the first song's refrain is If it wasn't for you/I probably would've killed myself), and lotsa feedback. I can't find a photo of the record online so instead that's a fucked up illustration by Alain Le Saux (courtesy of drtenge.com).


Jun 3, 2011

Double Dagger - Masks EP

I really like this band. They do the same stuff as bands like Coachwhips, Lightning Bolt, Le Shok, Wives, except without all the obnoxiousness. With Double Dagger, there isn't that extraneous effort, their music isn't clamoring for the spotlight. They keep it cool, daddy-o. Nice rock songs about boring people and wanting to fuck your best friend without wearing fucking jock straps on their heads and saying ridiculous things just to "blow people's minds." That being said, you might prefer the other four bands if you're still in college and think superfluous use of ethnic slurs is the most insane shit in the world. It's a coming of age thing.


May 19, 2011

Ballboy - A Guide for the Daylight Hours

Why are Scottish bands so good at humor? This record keeps you on your toes, you're never entirely sure whether you're in on the joke or you're laughing at a man's heartfelt musings, though song titles like "I Wonder if You're Drunk Enough to Sleep with Me Tonight" can help give some direction.

This is a weird one to talk about. "Europewide Search for Love" might be the only completely heartfelt song on here, and it's a really really pretty listen, "Sex Is Boring" and "Avant Garde Music" are about making fun of people who think knowing a lot about useless shit carries any clout in the real world (You've read more books than I could ever read/and you've seen more films than I could ever see/so why is it that you don't know any more than me?), "Meet Me at the Shooting Range" sounds like the guy's making fun of the acoustic ballad he's performing.

Yeah. Do yourself a favor and download this and listen to it a few times. It's a good conversation starter, like how to spell Mohmar Gadhafi's name, or a coffee table book about dongs.


May 17, 2011

The Saints - (I'm) Stranded

Don't let the lame album cover fool you. Australian punk rock band. Includes a song about kissin' cousins. Aussie Aussie Aussie.


May 14, 2011

Le Mans - Saudade

Pretty music by a Spanish band. What else do you want me to say? Get off my back.

Great listening while in bed falling asleep next to a sex partner, and when I say sex partner, I don't mean the one you pay money for, I mean the one you see in all those rom-coms, like Garden State, or Juno.

Seriously though.


May 12, 2011

Let Me Crazy - Contraflow

Huntington, New York (thanks, Chris!) rock and roll band writes an incredible record about time spent in New Orleans and how it sucks to live in a hurricane. Has that blue-collar punk rock vibe. Good God/Bad God transitioning into the next track, Birdbath, is the way all midpoints of records should sound. Like, if this was on vinyl, it'd be like Birdbath ends, Side A ends, you go, "Fuck," and the silent period where you flip the record over is your own little intermission, let's you get excited about what's going to happen next.


May 10, 2011

John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman

I am having a difficult time trying to describe this album without sounding cheesy, but I can't. This shit is fucking beautiful. Johnny Hartman has a smooth and strong bass voice that keeps the normally I'm-on-fucking-heroin-I-just-played-thirty-different-notes-in-a-millisecond John Coltrane a lot mellower, more appreciative of the standards he's sharing with such a good conventional voice.

All the songs are jazz ballads in the sense that they capture a mood that not many other music genres can. And if you don't want to try the whole record, at least listen to Lush Life, and introduce yourself to the song you should listen to after a long night of drinking and you're feeling sad in a good way.

By the way, if anyone out there plays jazz and is reading this, I am willing to concede that I have no idea what the fuck I am talking about so long as it helps you keep your cool.


May 8, 2011


Great 22-minute record of, yeah, this I'd call indie pop. Guitars are nice and jangly, songs sound a lot like a sad dude in flannel with a sweatshirt tied around his torso. Spent a good couple of months listening to "Picture Perfect" over and over. Sorry for keeping this under wraps for such a long time.


May 6, 2011

The Dentists - Dressed

One more before I go hit on lesbians.

Big collection of music by early 90s British band. Indie pop? I hear it and I think of Polaris, the Pete and Pete band, but with a little more of a 60s edge, a little more stuck in the past.

Funny story, looked them up on Wikipedia to find this disclaimer:

This band is unrelated to the short-lived Nazi punk band of the same name.

So if you're gonna reference The Dentists in casual conversation, might be safe to add "You know, the ones that weren't Nazis."


Teengenerate - Get Action!

Or maybe you prefer your Reservoir Dog punk a little more pimply and Japanese. Features a Queers cover and other shit. Apparently this is big on the blogosphere, but fuck it, I found this guy on Soulseek years ago, so technically I was first.

Also did not know they were Japanese until right now.


Marked Men - S/T

Hey, I hear you like playing air guitar in a standing/crouching position with one leg bent up into your belly like you were deflecting blows and the other leg on the ground but the knee bent in a hoppy jaunty manner. Also you like having your mouth open while you play so you sort of look like Mick Jagger. Classic Chuck Berry pose.

You know who I think you'd like? The Marked Men. You know, they got the punk sensibilities but there's a little chic behind that. I mean, you see that album cover, right? Reservoir Dog punk. After the show we'll hang out with the Make-Up or something.


May 5, 2011

Bomb the Music Industry! - To Leave or Die on Long Island

Few years ago (more like one decade, fuck) dude freaked about music and started writing full rock albums backed only by Garage Band. Since then dude put together a real band, tours extensively, invites fans to bring their own instruments and play onstage, bring their own tee shirts and get a free band logo stenciled on them.

Get ready for crazy tempos, crazy instrumentation (video game synths? glockenspiels? drum machines?), lyrics about drinking being poor and depressed, and soundbites from Spongebob Squarepants. To quote dude in question, "I do it 'cause I like it and I like it because you don't."


Go to donation-based label www.quoteunquoterecords.com for more of this.

May 2, 2011

Ava Luna - Services EP

Ava Luna is this Brooklyn band who does the Jamie Lidell thing except with a full band and the lead singer has a Germs tattoo. The Jamie Lidell thing is funky and soulful with a little bit of an electronic tint to it. Trust me, I have seen both of them, and I mean this all in the best way possible.

By the way I'm new here.


Apr 6, 2011

Kleenex Girl Wonder - Ponyoak

Kleenex Girl Wonder is this guy named Graham Smith. In the late nineties he put out a lo-fi pop record of home recordings called "Ponyoak." The album is 25 songs with 5 extra bonus tracks. It has that early Guided by Voices short song brilliance, and Smith has a solid ear for melodic hooks. And sure, with 30 songs there are bound to be some stinkers ("Anne Marie" is wretched) but the amount of good to great songs is almost astounding.

I'd recommend listening a few times to let the weird ones sink in, and if you're on the fence at all listen to "Now I Got A Feeling" to jump right in. That song has numerous bridges, a late-song key change, and little to no repetition at all in the verses and choruses. Basically, a really catchy song that takes an absurd amount of listens to get tiresome. The songwriting reminds me of Capstan Shafts, and Pollard, and if you like either I'd suggest giving "Ponyoak" a listen.


Feb 24, 2011

caUSE Co-MOTION! - It's Time

Short songs. They sound like they were recorded on shit instruments in basements. But this is one of those records where the songs themselves are the selling point. Pop melodies, catchy guitar work, great drumming. After a few listens all the songs sound like hits.


Feb 10, 2011

Young Adults - Black Hole

Boston band Young Adults' first full length. Thick guitars, pounding drums, and shouted choruses. I think it's appropriate to post this after that Orange Juice album because Black Hole has a song called "Rip It Up" and just like the former bands' biggest hit there are lyrics saying "rip it up" and "start again," which can't be a coincidence.

This is so goddamn good. If you like Mission of Burma you'll get behind this modern post-punk.


Jan 26, 2011

Orange Juice - BBC Sessions

Here are some cool BBC (John Peel included) cuts of a bunch of Orange Juice's best songs. The guitar and base are very crisp and yet Edwyn Collins' affected voice still overrides everything. Good melodies all around. They get listed as post-punk but this is really just pop music. It's all pop.

Also includes an interview. Check it out.