2007 GREATEST HITS
CLOCKCLEANER: We interviewed Clockcleaner back before Vice Magazine made them huge stars.
2007- Year In Review, by John Sharkey III: John plays guitar and vocalizes for the band.
1. Homostupids- 'The Edge ep': The only band in Amerikkka with actual men in the band that is truely worth a fudge. The reigning kings of Skull Music. The Edge gives a brief and touching glimpse into the life of a man that truly still hasn't found what he's looking for. He's even crossed over barbed-wire fence and stood on an empty beach, but alas, the moral here is that we've got one love and we've got to share it. Plain and simple. Alla, better, faster, stronger. Too bad the Sabres are playing like the team consists of Terry Schiavo, Christopher Reeves and Coco the monkey with head coach and athletic stalwart Stephen Hawking.
2. Lamps- LampsLamps: Caveman negro rhythms played by very handsome American Apparrel models. You know, the kinda busted Puerto Rican whores on the back of your city's weekly. No.2 Album by these awkward geeks. It sounds like this: smack slam oof flap slam dance. Better than album 1. That sounded like this: boom bang bang bang finger. That's a pretty good career so far.
3. Vegetative State: The best sophomore year HC out there these days. Played with these chronic masturbators last year. I will never do anything that good in front of 30 people. They have a 12" coming out on Parts Unknown Records due out around the end of the Mayan calendar.
4. Pink Reason: Kevin Douchebro, a true gentleman and a friend of mine. He brings it with pretty much the best power-pop garage-influenced song based rock tunes with middles I have heard since the Carbonas. They just get onstage and play tune after tune of heartfelt garage hooky pop punk that has come to be expected from this outfit. I have never danced so hard at a gig in my life. This is actually what I overheard some stupid cunt say after watching the Carbonas play probably the safest and gayest set I've ever seen and it has nothing to do with Pink Reason. Do some homework.
5. Psychedelic Horseshit: I'm glad these guys finally exist so I can stop trying to delude myself into thinking Times New Viking have more than one song. Oh SNAP! These guys could be described as the "Working-class Strokes" or a "Pretty Shitty Franz Ferdinand" but I would go as far to call them a "Better than Lavender Diamond Lavender Diamond".
6. Blues Control - Puff + s/t LPs: You ever spill wonton soup into a pot of gold or see a Leprechaun serving Mountain Dew and shrimp rangoon in the ghetto behind bullet proof plastic? YOU HAVE!!!!!??? Then buy these 2 albums by the Queens' premier race traitors. They make me fucking sick when they walk by holding hands. It's just not natural!!!
7. Mika Miko sleeping at my house. I never thought there would be five punker broads that could be in the same room with me and I wouldn't want to hide their keepers and draw swastikas on all of their lesbo literature. There is a god. These broads is cool. Theie tunes are good too.
Ok thats all the friends I have left................. the end.
Richie Charles, American Male:Richie plays the drums.
3. birth control
ZAC IVES: Zac is one of the co-owners of Goner Records and also sings for the Final Solutions.
Some highlights of 2007:
3. Limes - "Blue Blood" CD-R and live shows: completely broken and haggard pop songs - were perfect on record with this follow up to the very good 'Tarantula' CD, but it hadn't ever really come together live until a couple of jaw dropping shows this year.
5. Sonic Chicken 4 s/t LP: came out of nowhere and whacked us on the head- the little French band with the worst name of all time put out maybe the best record of the year.
8. Barbaras live: music got exciting again at their first live show this spring.
2. Gonerfest 4: Head, Donnie Denim, Ooga Boogas and Goodnight Loving shows at Gonerfest.
6. Hubble Bubble "Faking" LP: thanks to Radio Heartbeat for making this available. I never found a copy. Hooray!
10. Times New Viking "Paisley Reich" LP: first one never really hit me, new one hasn't hit real strong yet - but I couldn't stop listening to this for a while. Noisy pop seeping thru the muck... maybe came out earlier but this is when I heard it.
1. Midknights "Why"/"Pain" single: heard this record and went bonkers over it - later in the year my friend passed along his copy to me. Perfectly inept and sincere jangle punk from Chattanooga from mid-late 60s. Thanks Joe! I owe ya!
7. The Wire: I caught the bug earlier this year and tore through em all. Now I'm watching 5. Yes, I'm occasionally a TV sucker.
4. True Sons of Thunder month-long engagement at the Hi-Tone: there may have been 5 people total at the one I can't get out of my mind - disco ball going and complete Rocket From the Tombs style meltdown on stage.
9. Guiso Especial at Chilenos in Oklahoma City: Chilenos started as a secret tiny dive joint in south Oklahoma City (where I grew up) and is now everywhere in town - luckily the food is still really good. Hadn't tried this until this year - seasoned beef tips w/ onions and peppers and an egg cracked over it.
KEVIN FAILURE/PINK REASON: I don't think Kevin really needs an introduction. He is the brain behind Pink Reason and is DIY as fuck.
Top 5 places that good bands should consider playing (in no particular order):
-Salt Lake City, UT
Top 5 bands of '07 (no particular order):
-Hue Blanc's Joyless Ones
SCOTT SORIANO: You know him, you love him. The propreitor of Ss Records, blogger extraordinaire, Sacto legend and Z-Gun co-honcho. He used to help us out with TB a lot as well.
Down there at the Senior Center for Aged Record Freaks, there’s a small gang of label honches who take over the shuffleboard court and yammer on about the state of music. We’ve been through plenty of musical trends and marched miles in particular movements. We’ve heard a lot of great tunes and plenty more bullshit. When it gets to what is going on today, all of us agree that the Dawn of the Twenty-first Century is as fruitful for quality noisiness as any time we’ve lived through. So it is no surprise to me that this Best of 2008 ain’t gonna be a top ten or anything close. There is too much great shit out there. Below you will get a few words on some of my faves. They do not include any record I put out, though you should assume that if it has the S-S label on it, I dig it. Why release records you can’t stand to listen to? (That said, I will plug Los Llamarada live, the best musical act I witnessed last year.) There is no order to this list. I am jotting them down as they come to mind. I am sure there are escaping my memory, one of the drawbacks of Old Age. Here goes:
Michael Yonkers with The Blind Shake – 'Carbohydrates Hydrocarbons' LP (Nero’s Neptune):
An inspired pairing! Yonkers with the Blind Shake is heavy heavy heavy, churning out Sabbath quality heavy metal hooks. Beautiful sleeve, too.
Mudboy – 'Hungry Ghosts: These Songs are Doors' LP (Not Not Fun):
Talk about beautiful sleeves! This dye cut is pretty damn swell but that would be worth little mention if it wasn’t wrapped around a record as entertaining as this. Organ music dementia that makes me want to see Mudboy and Quintron in the Battle of the Keys.
Slicing Grandpa – 'Chaos Midnight' 10” (SLF):
Seattle/Vegas satanic science fiction madness. It is impossible to predict where these guys will go next, which makes me look forward to every pip from their woodpile.
Wooden Shjips – 'Sol ’07' 7” (Sick Thirst/Holy Mountain):
These guys have gotten plenty of hype during the last year and deservedly so. Saw them twice this year and the second time (Delta of Venus, Davis) they were one great melting throb. This seven is the best thing they’ve done yet – focused, hypnotic, with some wild guitar.
Thomas Function – 'Relentless Machines' 7” (Dusty Medical):
Because this record veers off of TF’s Southern power pop frame, many have pooh-poohed it. Fah! This Celtic Glam romp holds up to any early 70s Brit glam chartable.
Titus Andronicus – s/t 7” (Shake Appeal):
Another record that dares to fuse (or sound like it’s fused) unlikely sounds. Here you get a Pogues like drunken sing-a-long mated with some Sacramento Secret Center-style production (Nar, Bananas). Eagerly awaiting more.
Family Pet – 'Ideas are the Enemy' 7” (Foreign Frequency):
Free jazz duo from the sticks of Maine make a one-sided sax & vocal blast. AM Haines has a mouth that will rival any Brotzmann disciple.
Gary Hassay/Dan Dechellis/Tatsuya Nakatani – s/t LP (Foreign Frequency):
Never heard of Hassay before this but, man, can that fucker blow a horn. Intense free jazz trio here on a pretty great, young label.
Talibam! – 'The Excusable Eathling' LP (Pendu Sound):
Another one that came out of nowhere, at least for me. Upon first listen, I thought these guys were a dozen or so, but, nope, just three dudes making a hell of a lot of sound. A zillion slivers of noise assembled in free jazz context makes for great listening.
Klangmutationen - 'Weibe Messe' LP (Holy Mountain):
Soul scrapping free jazz from Malaysian Ayler-ites. Pure pain lives here.
Shepherds – 'Bush Babies' 7” (DNT):
Here are two more guys from NYC using loops and drums and other shit to create the sound of the late 70s free jazz loft scene. Stunning.
Oso el Roto – 'Mojon Pol Agua' LP (Galerie Pache):
Paris weird goes beyond the Cheveu/Volt/Le Club des Chats crowd. There is also a bunch of freaks around this Galerie Pache label, including this group of Chilean exiles, who take Beefheart straight into the new century.
The Mans - 'JC/BC' 7" (Boom Chick):
Nothing new here BUT this primitive thud got multiples spins. "What the fuck?" sleeve art also a plus.
Tyvek - 'Summer Burns' 2x7” (Whats your Rupture):
One of the best bands going. An absolute affirmation of everything that makes DIY punk an essential experience – both live and on record. Saw them a half dozen times last year and heard every record and nothing disappointed.
TV Ghost – 'Atomic Rain' 7” (Die Stasi):
Finally someone figures out that the early psychedelic grit that the Cramps trucked in 30+ years ago is worth drawing from.
The Wax Museums – 'Introducing…' 7” (Rehab):
The first and the best by these Texas creeps. A great update of 70s LA art scum punk.
The Shudders – s/t 7” (Compact):
Swirling punk with a cool guitar squall from a trio of Oakland gals. Sounds like a Woodhouse production though it ain’t.
Finally Punk – 'Primary Colors' 7” (ABL):
Roots are early 80s primitive post punk and 90 primitive riot grrl, which is fine by me.
Dan Melchior und Das Menace – 'The “Pink Scream” EP' 12” (Shake Appeal):
Das Dan released something like a billion records this year, all of them good, but this one the best. One of the best Brit punk songsmiths going, if not the tops. And seeing/hearing his guitar flailing live is a must.
Krysmopompas - 'Mehr Kilometer Pro Leben' CD (Krysmopompas):
Berlin based four-piece sucks in some Wire pop into their Krautrock belly.
Mouthus - 'Saw a Halo' CD (Load):
One of those nightmares that you want to experience again. Psychedelia for the ill at heart.
Group Inerane - 'Guitars from Agadez' LP and
Group Doueh - 'Guitar Music from the Western Sahara' LP (Sublime Frequencies):
That Sublime Frequencies has put out just two vinyl albums and that both are mind-blowing revelations is a study of how to plan your punches. Guitar work like you have never heard before.
V/A – 'Doppel Hertz' 2XLP (Kernkrach):
An international comp of contemporary synth bands, which will serve as a very listenable document for future music freaks. I dug 75% of the stuff on this thing, which is a high percentage for a comp, especially one which is over two records. And the 25% I didn’t groove to was more a matter of taste than quality.
QEK Junior – '1/0' 7” (Kernkrach):
Streamlined synth with hooks that will sink a U-boat. A fantastic debut.
Pink Reason – 'By a Thread' 7” (Trick Knee):
Haunted, hollow, psychedelic introspection from the Wilds of Wisconsin. Along with the 12” on Siltbreeze and PR’s self released debut, the best one-two-three punch of the last few years.
Lamps – 'Lamps' LP (In the Red):
The first Lamps LP (also called The Lamps) was good but this one is 15 miles better. A year or so on God’s Good Earth sharpens these dude’s songs without sapping the power.
Sightings - 'Through the Panama' CD (Load):
Nearly ten years going and this band doesn’t settle for one sound AND continues to get better and better. My most listened to release of the year.
Other mentionable: Der Teenage Panzerkorps, Car Commercials, Sonic Chicken 4, Volt, Better Beatles, HEX comp, ICK, Sword Heaven, Meercaz, Lovely Little Girls, Hiroshima Rocks Around, Sheering Pinx, Le Ton Mite, Factums, Terrible Twos, Secret Society of the Sonic Six, The Golden Boys, Suitcases, Catatonic Youth, The Daily Void, Times New Viking, Human Eye…
RYAN WELLS: Also known to some as Denkinger, RW is Z-Gun co-honcho and Bay Area man-about-town.
NEW RECORDS ONLY, and sadly predictable.
Eddy Current Supression Ring - s/t LP (Dropkick)
Nothing People - both 7"ers (SS and Hozac)
Psychedelic Horseshit - Magic Flowers Droned LP (Siltbreeze)
V/A Hex LP (Hex/Enfant Terrible)
Los Llamarada - The Exploding Now LP (S-S)
Brainbombs - Stinking Memory 7" (Anthem)
Human Eye - Spiders & Their Kin 7" (Cass)
Goodnight Loving - Drafted Into War 7" (Contaminated)
Tyvek - Summer Burns 2x7" (What's Your Rupture)
TV Ghost - s/t 7" (Die Stasi)
THE FEELING OF LOVE: Feeling of Love is one man from Metz, France who released some of the editor's favorite records this year.
“Oh Das Ist Liebe
Oh Mein Mädchen”
I don’t remember 2007 except The Anals.
Two guys in leather jackets, blue jeans, with knives, baseball caps and one microphone.
It was a dark cold night show in a bunker. Black lights give light to psychic crosses and animal's faces painted on the wall. Beers are really cheap, and girls...wait, where are the girls?
I wanna taste their hairy chest.
People are laughing in the audience. “What did the singer say?" “She’s the man”, the title of the song which starts the show. So what? That’s true! I know so badly what he’s talking about. Every song title of the band talks to a regular 21st century male. For example: “Girls just want to have fun”.
Yes, the sound is really dirty (in a homosexual way I mean).
One guy is leading the band with a robotic desperate voice and a minimalist martial German keyboard. He only plays two notes and sings one sentence like “her eyes are pure like a pure malt”. I can also hear the reverberations of a mambo drum machine in the night.
When the other “kamarad” plays drums, the band reminds me the sensual german band D.A.F. at their best.
But what I like the most is when the drummer plays guitar. He uses it in a real primitive way. No notes, just a feeling. You can think about Arto Lindsay in D.N.A. but it is better to say his sound is like an animal scream or a Mongolian cavalier crying in the rain.
The Anals sound throws me in a hard spiral of love.
Love in the streets, love in World War II. All we need.
Sweet Rot Records will put out their first 7” in 2008.
Hide your daddy’s fake plastic anus please.
from Metz, France.
Tim Anstine’s Musical Opinion in List Form List: Tim is in VS and also does some work for TB as well.
Lists are very nifty, efficient, and coherent things. The subject is clear and the opinion is clearer. It is the fodder for every music nerd that makes fun of his fellow nerd’s preferred taste. But if you think people actually care if you hate their favorite band, and want to hear your brilliant step by step analysis of how they should not like them, then you are a fucking cum stain in the shittiest porno theatre. Anyway, the following is a list of LPs/singles that are in no particular order that I happen to like, and I hope you do as well.
Carbonas - “s/t” (Goner): I was initially surprised by the sound of this record. They traded in their rough vocals and thick balls out garage riffs for a more melodic and efficient approach. To be honest, I was afraid how the new album would sound. But as I heard the opening song “Phone Booth”, my doubts were gone. I have to say that the high point for me on this album was hearing the “Whoas” on the newly coined anthem “Trapped In Hell”. Usually punk bands get progressively worse after their first album, but the Carbonas decided to get their shitty album out of the way first so they could get down to business. Their best yet.
Busy Signals - “s/t” (Dirtnap): I have never skipped one single track on this album, and that’s usually a very good sign. The lead guitar on this is so hooky and so catchy that I could see this band being very popular beyond the realms of Termbo. Also, the one female member is not the fucking bass player for once. Damn you Tina Weymouth! Damn you to Hell!
Holy Shit! - “s/t” (Criminal IQ): I love the references of Pac-Man, Brett Farve, and beer that thrash forth on this long player. For a hardcore band, these guys sure don’t follow a formula, and jump from point A to point B very quick. The whole album is an absurd helping of a mutated and deformed child of hardcore. This child will grow up to be a sexual predator. Did I say that they talked about Brett Farve and Pac-man on the same album? Fuck! I never get to the good ideas! In conclusion, the only other modern hardcore band that comes close to these guys is Career Suicide and that’s pretty much apples and oranges. I love this album.
Daily Void - “Identification Code: 5271- 4984953784-06564” (Dead Beat): Being the huge Functional Blackouts fan that I am, I had to get this one right away. Pretty much picks up where the FB’s left off with such evil robotic numbers like “The Man Without A Face”, “You’ve Been Erased”, and “Devil’s Golden Window”. Ace!
Clockcleaner - “Babylon Rules” (Load): This is a band people either really love or really hate or think are ok. Setting the Hedburgian reference aside, this one offers a dirge of refined filth, surf-like guitars and bellowing/sneering vocals. My favorite tracks were “Caliente Queen” and “Out of The City”.
Final Solutions - “Songs By Solutions” (Goner): I love the mix of punk, weird synthesizers and straight up pop that the Solutions offer on this very unsophomoric second release. There is a diverse body of work with such synth driven songs like “I’m A Lightning Bug” and sing-alongs like “Brown Panther”. Good work gentlemen.
Grave Blankets- “Your Injured Ways” 7” (Self-Released): I don’t know if this came out in 2006 or 2007 but I got it in 2007 so that’s all I care about. Anyway, this group is massively underrated and you should be ashamed for not noticing them. The title track is so ridiculously good that it’ll give even the most seasoned big tit music snob goose pimples. “Something You Say” is basically a blues song hijacked by the guy who is quiet all his life but one day just snaps. Give it up for another product of Columbus!
TV Ghost- “Atomic Rain” 7” ( Die Stasi): One of the most unstable and insatiable bands to have made their mark this year. This is one of those bands that you have to see live, but if you do see them live, you need to get this record. Both arenas offer different things to the listener. On this debut, they sound like Vincent Price if he wrote songs for a garage band. It’s a spiraling mindfuck of madness ladies and gentlemen! This is the soundtrack for the Haunted Mansion ride in Disney World for sure!
Vee Dee- “Glimpses Of Another World” 7” (Criminal IQ): I’ve always had a soft spot for this band ever since I bought their first album. One could hear the acid drenched undertones ever so slightly on “Furthur”, but they are now on full display. They do the most “unpunk” thing and release a record with wah wah, stoned out jams, and a song that lasts over six minutes, and still kick the shit out almost every Mohawk trio that plagues our nation’s campus cool bars. They back up the acid with catchy/dark riffs and even catchier/darker ideas that completely trump odes to smashing the state. If they can make a rinky dink single sound epic as hell, just think what they could do with a double LP. Could this be our generation’s Husker Du? We’ll just have to find out.
Top Ten Termbo Buzzwords of 2007:
- Weird Punk
- Butt Hash/Jenkem
- Z Gun
- Vice (Oh how we hate them!)
- TV Ghost
- Any word that is reactionary to Weird Punk
LEMMY CAUTION of BLACK TIME: TB loves Black Time so much we interviewed them twice. Plus, Lemmy always sends us Christmas cards/mix tapes. Top dude.
Best thing I did this year:
Getting to finally play in the states. It was only for 10 days but I'd been trying and failing to play in the US for so many years I was beginning to think that America didn't exist - a fictional reality created on a BBC soundstage and presented to the gullible British public as 'imported' TV shows. The whole experience seems quite unreal looking back on it 10 months later so the jury is still out.
Biggest disappointment of the year:
Reformation shows by Roky Erickson and the Jesus & Mary Chain. It was great to see Roky alive and relatively well but the show was all but ruined by a truly awful boogie bar-rock backing band that smothered all the best moments in widdling stratocaster solos. What I could discern of Roky's voice sounded good but unfortunately the soundman in his wisdom decided to mix it well below the level of the booming rock (as in RAAWWWWWWWKKKKK!!!) drums. A week later, the same genius decided the perfect sound balance for JAMC would be to mix the guitars really, really low and turn the rhythm section right up. Presumably this was so we could really appreciate a guy that used to be in Ride 'get funky' with his approximation of the madchester beat on a 10-piece drumkit during 'Reverence', but were denied the chainsaw sound that should have torn our heads off during 'You Trip Me Up' by reducing it to more of an electric shaver-with-silencer effect. The original rhythm section of the Mary Chain were sat a few rows behind us and proceedings could have been improved considerably by some stand-up kettle drum action - Bobby Gillespie did do this as second drummer for the Grinderman UK shows earlier on in the year so it was always a possibility that he might leap on stage and start beating on the sleeve of 'Metal Box' by PIL like that mythical first rehearsal, but alas it wasn't to be. Instead we had to put up with the singer of the Duke Spirit (WHO??? Exactly) duetting tunelessly with receding Jim Reid on an anaemic 'Just Like Honey'. My friend Kat saw Bobby Gillespie on the bus once - he had a 12-pack of toilet roll under his arm and was listening to the new Primal Scream single really loud on his iPod.
Best thing I had in my mouth this year:
This might offend 90% of TB's readership (and a third of my own band) but for the most part I found American food a big letdown. I'd read so many comments from American bands complaining about British food when they toured here that I assumed they must have a point. Particularly vocal critics such as Henry Rollins and Steve Albini were so vitriolic in their insistence that you couldn't get a decent meal in the jolly old UK that I was convinced of the superiority of Yank cuisine despite never having tried any of it. Now I have I can report that your breakfast cereals have far too much flair going on for their own good - if I wanted a small flotilla of marshmallow floating in my bowl of cornflakes I'd ask. Not to mention all the glaze, caramel chunks, chocolate, buckets of sugar and small plastic toys they add to it. A shame as Captain Crunch is undoubtedly the coolest-named cereal in a field that admittedly doesn't have much competition (Bran Flakes are Dumpy's Rusty Nuts in comparison to Captain Crunch's Crime). I like peanuts as much as the next man but not to the point that I want them in every chocolate bar I buy. And surely that's not real chocolate on a Hershey bar, but some kind of weird brown coating made from e-numbers and artificial additives. A lot of the other breakfast options would be OK if eaten at the other end of the day - biscuits and gravy for example - but not something I ever want to face at 7.00 in the morning on a fragile stomach. You call that a pancake??? A pancake is a thin delicate disk of batter served with a sprinkling of sugar and a squeeze of lemon, not some thick gluttonous cake with a tin of fruit dumped on top of it. I appreciate the fact you can order eggs to be cooked in 30 different ways but usually I'm too tired to make a decision, I just want a nice sunny side up fella on one piece of toast (your only option in a grimy London caff), not a 6-egg omelette on a doorstep sized chunk of sourdough with enough melted cheese on it to solidify your arteries forever. Ranch dressing tastes like creamy vomit. Gatorade looks like something you'd clean a car engine with. I could go on - don't even get me started on Taco Bell. At one mexican place in LA, Stix commented on how you often get a fork and spoon in American restaurants rather than a knife and fork, and I could only surmise it was so you could get all that greasy slop into your mouths faster. BUT, and this is quite a big but, the burritos at Taqueria Cancun in San Francisco fell victim to many of my US food gripes - indecent amounts of sour cream and cheese, unnecessarily large portion sizes (they're about the size of a fat toddler's arm) but are undeniably hands down the tastiest thing I've ever eaten. I think they might be laced with angel dust - on our last night I ate one at 3 in the morning after the show, then went and got one 6 hours later for breakfast. Maybe that was the first stage in my food brainwashing and in time I'll be going hog wild for US junk. I look forward to Black Time's transformation from nerds who get sand kicked in our face by jocks to Poison Idea over the course of our next tour of Shermanland.
Dance parties of the year:
The strange illegal biker bar Jakob from the Makeouts took us to in Stockholm. An underground parking garage run by Swedish hells angels that stayed open all night with a bar selling cheap beer (unheard of in Scandinavia) and a DJ spinning back-to-back dancefloor smashers - "Leader Of The Pack" followed by "Don't You Want Me Baby" followed by "Girls Girls Girls" followed by "New Rose" followed by "Back In Black" etc. We also had our own bar set up outside stocked with the duty-free whiskey and vodka we'd purchased at the airport. I spent the entire plane ride home the next morning concentrating really hard so I didn't throw up all over Mr Stix. Closely followed by Turku in Finland during a Los Raw Gospels jaunt a couple of months earlier - DJ Sami kept on bringing the hits. At the end of the night he just gave up spinning different records and played "Strong Come On" by the Oblivians 3 times in a row, and everybody danced. It definitely had the edge over the cheesy city centre disco we'd gone to in Helsinki the night before where a middle-aged guy with a beat-up face who told me he was a "very famous actor on Finnish television" hit on me. His pick-up routine went as follows:
Very Famous Finnish Actor (VFFA): Can I ask you a personal question?
VFFA: Are you gay?
VFFA: Would you like to come back to my place and hang out anyway?
VFFA: I'm married - it would just be some fun between friends!
Me: The answer is still no.
VFFA: You know, I think you look a bit like a woman anyway, so if you slept with me it wouldn't be entirely homosexual - we could just pretend you're the girl and I'm the boy.
With all that charm and sophistication I'm hoping that one day he writes his own book - '101 Most Insulting Chat-up Lines' which would be a surefire bestseller.
Girl gang of the year:
Obviously The Husbands. Why they're not more appreciated by the garage cognoscenti is a total mystery to me. Sarah Reed has an absolutely fantastic voice with the enviable ability to go from harmonious subtlety to paint-stripping scream in the space of a line. Different matching outfits everytime they tour, a high energy heart-pumping live show, danceable beats, well chosen covers, girl group groove, both their albums are absolute winners and feature besuited zombies on the sleeve - what more do you want?!? Their songs are packed with memorable choruses, minor-key middle 8s, cool intros and dozens of different great moments - an attention to detail that proves they've dug on tons of great old 45s and re-deployed the not-so-obvious tricks in their own repertoire, from heavy-breathing interludes to maracas on the second line. King Khan & BBQ are rightly lauded as modern re-interpreters of a classic sound, and to these ears the Husbands are the yin to KK & BBQ's yang, the Shirelles to their Everlys as it were. It was an honour to hang out with the sassiest girls in America for a couple of weeks and get to cut a record with 'em. There's obviously tour-buddy-bias seeping into this, but trust me this isn't a warmth I've felt to many bands we've travelled with. Total badasses.
Two Musical highlights of 2007 - Young Folks vs. Old Folks:
Audacity - live + CD-R
Our US live premiere was an all-ages warehouse show on an industrial estate in Santa Ana, California. I was pretty nervous about playing anyway and this was compounded when the first band of the evening (Party Fowl) put on a very impressive display with their spastic surf-punk riffs, homemade instruments and strange megaphone pronouncements. Then the next band took the stage. Audacity looked all of about 14 years old (I think they might actually be as old as 15), rigged up their own homemade lightshow (strobelight in the kickdrum), plugged in and put on one of the most blistering displays of primitive punk rock I've ever witnessed. Gang-chanted vocals, stumbiln' and slidin' rhythms, sloppy but retardedly perfect guitar lines, a car crash of angst and sweet melodicism with perfect lyrical encapsulations of adolescent trials and tribulations in a small town - y'know, just like on 'The OC'. I heard the song 'Teenage Town' once at this show and it was so catchy it was stuck in my head for the rest of the year, until I finally managed to get someone to send me a copy of their demo and confirm that not only was it a genuine garage-snot anthem (and not just some jetlag-induced trick of my imagination), but they also had 8 other equally awesome songs. If someone puts their demo on vinyl it's going to be the album of 2008 unless there's some fucking stiff competition. Anyway, their show was fucking incredible (complete with front guy doing multiple backflips off the stage HR-style), there was absolutely no way we could even attempt to follow it, and they had to leave as soon as their set finished 'cos they had a homework assignment to finish for class the next day! I felt the same mixture of dumbfounded awe and immense jealousy I experienced when I first saw the Hipshakes. YOUNG BASTARDS.
Cheater Slicks - 'Walk Into The Sea' LP
This Italian guy I know had a t-shirt made up with the witty slogan "I like their early stuff" - a truism that can be applied to a vast swathe of music. That a band can release their best album after 20 years of existence doesn't so much buck the trend as draw a dividing line between them and other mere mortal bands, a line that they can stand on one side of and proclaim "Yes - you puny human musicians can scrabble around in the dirt with your disappointing live LPs, faddish acoustic revisiting of your back catalogue, diversions into a more 'mature' sound, experimental concept albums, poor sophomore efforts and inability to fulfil your early promise, but we, the mighty Cheater Slicks, laugh at your earthbound pettiness and continue to stride through the cosmos oblivious, honing constant minor perfections to our colossal sound like ancient races hew statues to their strange gods from stone!!!!". A constant soundtrack to the year, whether I was waking up, falling asleep, getting drunk, feeling depressed, feeling OK and all points in between. An album that worked in the traditional sense of flowing from start to end - I'd stick it on the record player with a view to playing 1 or 2 tracks and invariably end up listening to it the whole way through. OLD BASTARDS.
200 LBU: Tony Rettman is one of our favorite scribes, via his work at Blastitude and his own 200 LBU zine/blog.
MY YEAR BEATS YOUR MONTHLY MEAT WAGON
A 2007 Recap
By Tony Rettman
Why would anyone care what anyone thought of anything that’s happened in the past year? Nothing can be so unexciting to me than list upon list of records someone liked that came out this year. Wow, you liked the Blues Control and/or Pissed Jeans record too? How interesting! You’re favorite live show of the year was done by your girlfriend on a broken kazoo? Please! Keep ‘em coming! I got all night to read these things! I mean…really…what’s the point? What does the lister get out of it? I’m assuming him or her gets some sorta metaphorical boner thinking someone somewhere cares what they think, ‘cause I just can’t picture sitting down and making a list like that just for the love of the game. All these fucking websites with lists on them just seem like abuncha people making lists of one another’s efforts to remind themselves to ‘keep on keepin’ on’ in their fantasy world of dark rooms, loud music and disillusion. It’s one in the many self-celebratory ceremonies I wish to sit out in the eternal keg party called (Jesus! Am I really the age I am and still using this term?) ‘THE SCENE’. This year I’ve paid less attention to music and had one of the genuinely best years of my life. Way better than past years experiences of drunken escapades paid for at others expenses or sitting through lackluster sets by friends only to approach them with a glazed expression and the expected response of ‘That was great!’ I can count the number of times I saw live music this year on my hands and the money I’ve saved on not buying every little piece of vinyl in the world has actually made a difference to me financially. I feel like a junkie with the monkey off his or hers back. If you wanna know what music I liked this year, take a look at the blog I kept over the past year and make your own list. There could be a few things I forgot to mention there that I might mention here. But will this be a list? I suppose in some way it might be. I’d like to think of it more of me making some sorta mental checklist of what to be thankful for in the past year…and you’re welcomed to join the ride!
BURRITO OF THE YEAR
Back before the day before Easter of ‘07, I had a hell of a meal at a little place called Orlando’s in Taos, New Mexico. The hand wringing reason that I was in the area was to rescue about 3000 slices of vinyl from a garage. My worries about the costs of shipping and where I was going to store the fuckers once I got back to Brooklyn promptly went out the window once an infant sized burrito stuffed with fresh shrimp, rice and many other delicacies was brought to my table. Not one Free Jazz rarity could hold a candle to this meal, so eat flan and die Valerie Wilmer! The side of deep fried chickpeas was mesmerizing. Every mouthful brought up more and more questions as to how they got these things to taste so friggin’ great. The spicy, almost crispy goodness of them still sneaks up in my food brain every once in awhile and I don’t even want to know HOW they got those things so good. If anything, not knowing how to replicate them will give me more of a reason to go out to that nice little slice of nowhere to chow down and take it easy and forget about the various stickup kids and criminals I have to endure on a daily basis. The next day (The actual day before Easter) I ate a Frito pie there and upchucked it up some eight hours later after consuming many cans of Tecate in a hot tub under the desert stars. Hey! What can I say? You can’t take me anywhere.
(1114 Don Juan Valdez Lane/Taos, NM/(505) 751 – 1450)
ARCHIVAL/POSTHUMOUS RECORD RELEASE OF THE YEAR
One story my older sister loves to tell is how when I was around twelve years old, I would always go around the house screaming ‘DROP THE A BOMB ON ME!’ Eventually, she had some horrible nightmare about nuclear holocaust where our whole family died and she blamed the whole event on my endless shrieking of those words. Anyone worth their weight in liberty spikes knows it was homage to the excellent ten (?) second long classic of the same name that appeared on the double LP P.E.A.C.E. compilation released on R Radical sometime in ’84 or ’85. The band that recorded said song; ODFX (from Akron, Ohio) was always a foggy footnote in my Hardcore research that never got passed go. Thirteen years later, some Hardcore label from down south named Get Revenge did up their 1983 demo on a seven inch and I think I will declare it archival/posthumous release of the year. Much like the ten-second teaser I’ve enjoyed all these years, these demo tapes are primitive as hell in their dilapidation. Where most of the Midwest Hardcore scene at the time were trying their best to streamline a sound and not be THAT MUCH of a cliché, these guys were more than happy to play thrash that can barely keep up with itself. ‘Paddle’ style drumming that sounds like it’s being played on a pair of sixth grade music class bongo drums…CHECK! Songs against oppression and drugs…CHECK! Guitar that sounds like it’s being played through an eight-track player…CHECK! All ya need now is a sloppy drawing of Reagan being skull banged on the cover and you’re in business. Sadly, this sucker is out of print already. Even sadder is the fact the label is going to do up a double CD joint of (I guess) every beer fart these guys ever did. Thirteen songs on a seven-inch is/was more than enough guys, please leave it there. Anyone who could sit through 2 CD’s worth of this stuff is beyond a trooper and going into territory called ‘Clinically Insane’.
WINE OF THE YEAR
St. Supery’s Sauvignon Blanc is subtle…real subtle. So subtle you’ll down a bottle or two before you notice yourself mumbling to family members about Christian Hardcore bands and pills. With a strong acidic center that helps it from coming off too fruity, this is the wine you keep around for special occasions like Tuesday nights or the 100th viewing of ‘Superbad’.
PUNK ROCK NERD BOOK OF THE YEAR
Trust me when I say I’ve seen and consumed my fair share of these encyclopedic volumes that list every Punk Rock or Psychedelic Rock or whatever-the-fuck record ever made. After awhile, they’re all just a blur of supposed facts on press runs, label colors, so on and so on …real pointdexter shit. So you better believe I had my doubts when I saw ‘No More Heroes – A Complete History of U.K. Punk from 1976 to 1980’ down at the local book megamart. Since I had nothing else better to do with my summer day, I decided to pull up one of those comfy, corporate chairs and get a good laugh. Three hours later, with my noggin swimming in band names I hadn’t the foggiest idea on, I decided ‘Yeah, I think this book warrants a purchase’ and walked up to the counter knowing I was making the right choice. Author Alex Ogg leaves stones up heaved hither and yonder as he gives every loser from Ipswich as much time and effort as he does the London posers of the time. Although I can’t say I agree with him on everything he writes here AT LEAST HE HAS A FUCKING OPINION and isn’t reducing it to just ‘500 made with yellow labels’. The whole tone of Ott’s writing equates to some cool older dude (Totally hetro so it’s totally cool) inviting you ‘round to hear some singles, talk some nerd boy/collector smack, drink a brew (or ten), regale you in a gig story (or twelve) and maybe even peel you off an extra copy of the Martin and The Brownshirts single he’s got lying around. The amount of toilet trips this book will receive is beyond countable on human hands. The Angelic Upstarts entry goes on for six pages! Does that say enough?
CHEESE OF THE YEAR
I feel like some Punk Rock collector dork whose just discovered Raven’s ‘Back To Ohio Blues’ when it comes to discussion of wines and cheeses. I really don’t know shit about it other than what others tell me. But every once in awhile I taste something where I just know the shit’s good and Humboldt Fog is one such cheese. Soft and luscious with the slightest bit of crumble, this goat cheese packs a wickedly euphoric punch. It’s like the dairy equivalent to the intro of ‘We Gotta Know’, or perhaps the start of ‘Raven Mad Jam’…I guess it matters which one is cooler to you this week. And that mention of ‘We Gotta Know’ reminds me…
HARDEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
Every once in awhile, I’ll be walking down the Lower East Side and walking the other way up the sidewalk will be none other than John ‘Bloodclot’ Joseph. Every time I see the dude, I get some weirdo trigger reaction to brace myself for brutality. It’s not that I think the dude wants to kick the crap outta me (and thank God for that) But I just get a flashback to those Cro-Mags shows twenty something years ago when everyone knew once the ‘Clockwork Orange’ intro music ended and ‘We Gotta Know’ began, you better hold your own or you’d be a bucket of soupy something on the dance floor. Hey, you know you’ve left a musical legacy when some shmuck like myself gets Vietnam-like flashbacks to Hardcore shows of yore at the mere sight of you. All kindsa folklore swam around the man and now it’s all wrapped up in his autobiography named ‘The Evolution of a Cro-Magnon’. From foster homes to juvey halls to hustling fake narcotics at Yes concerts to the Navy and beyond, it’s all there for you to marvel at and wonder how the hell he’s still alive. His early 90’s battle with crack addiction is some harrowing shit to read and the guy writes it all like he’s talking about going down to the bodega to buy a loaf of bread or something. Throw all your books on other NY street life in the trash; this is the realest deal to come down the pike EVER.
FUNNIEST MOTHERFUCKER OF THE YEAR
In the summer of this year, I did a bunch of 36-hour shifts at my place of work. Luckily, summer is the slowest time of the year for us, so I pretty much sat around for whole weekends at a time watching the latest British sit-coms on YouTube while eating heartily. Peep Show, The Mighty Boosh and The IT Crowd kept my spirits up in between quick catnaps, but the dude who really kept me laughing was Russell Brand. I suppose if I lived over there in Blighty, I would think of him as a right douche (as apparently a lot of people over there do) but from this side of the pond, he’s the funniest motherfucker to hit a screen since Chapelle. Looking like Larry Wallis circa ’73 with body movements that come off like George Carlin meets Oscar Wilde, Russell riffs like a madman who gets high off sniffing velvet. Ignore all the hoopla surrounding the man and concentrate on his material and the spontaneity in which he delivers it. His series ‘Ponderland’ was the funniest thing I discovered on YouTube all this year. His U.S. film debut comes up this spring in ‘Forgetting Sarah Marshall’. The coming attractions don’t look too promising (To be honest) but hopefully he’ll rescue the film from total crapdom. For now, I’ll just join the throngs of screaming U.K. teenyboppers and say Russell is AOK.
THE ‘IT’S ABOUT DAMN TIME’ DVD BOX SET OF THE YEAR
After a quick run through the late night programming of Comedy Central, Brit sit-com Black Books seemed to just fade away into oblivion. A DVD of the first season was released rather quietly a year or so back in our country, but that was it. For some strange reason I won’t bother questioning, they did up all three seasons (running from 2000 to 2004) in a nice boxed set and it’s required viewing for anyone with a love of wine, literature, predictable slapstick and misanthropic, comedic musing. Sometimes it can come off like ‘Frasier’ meets ‘The Young Ones’; a perfect merger of the straightforward classic sit-com coming to grips with surreal potty humor. Sometimes it just seems to be coming from entirely it’s own time, place and sense of humor. Main character Bernard Black (played by Dylan Moran) is a role model for all that are hostile and hopeless; the kinda character that can sum up an entire philosophy in a grumbled, shittly toned line. Get a bottle of Spanish anti-freeze and cozy up to this fine collection…I’ll be glad ya did.
BEST NEW CHARACTER ON ‘THE WIRE’
Duquan ‘Dukie’ Weems. I swear to God, I’d adopt this kid.
BEST EPISODE OF ‘NEVER MIND THE BUZZCOCKS’ FROM THIS YEAR
Man, this episode is so good; I could watch it every Saturday night while eating a meatball parm sub…oh wait! I do!
BEST DECLARATION IN THE START OF A SONG IN ‘07
Last year it belonged to Danny DiMaggio’s intro to ‘Stupid Street’, even though I’m not too sure if simply announcing where you’re (supposedly) recording is a declaration of anything. But this year it belongs to Mary J. Blige and her intro for ‘Just Fine’. First time I heard it, I got cold shocks up my legs. Never has there been such a sincere statement on the power of sound since Ray belted out ‘WE’RE BACK!’ in the beginning of ‘Flame Still Burns’. The rest of the song is great as well; the best jam she’s done in a long time.
BEST FANCY ASS DINING EXPERIENCE OF ‘07
To close out the year, me lady and I went down to Cape May, New Jersey to take in the beauty of a beach town in the winter and to dine in some of their five star eateries. The Peter Shields Inn down there might have all the ambience of a morgue, but the décor is exquisite, as is the food. The pepper-seared elk was juicy with flavor and my lady friend’s seafood potpie was a literal caldron of fresh sea goods encrusted in garlic. What a way to end the year. There’s a twenty-five dollar minimum on each customer, so you might have to sell some of your precious fucking Punk Rock records to eat here. Perhaps a meal like this will make you realize that objects such as the Teenage Depression seven inch will be there forever (unfortunately)…fine meals are fleeting.
MY PREDICITIONS FOR ‘08
One noise asshole will collaborate with some other noise asshole. They will release it on a seven-inch or CDR. Douches will purchase.
RELEASES TO LOOK OUT FOR IN ‘08
Leslie Keffer – ‘Feels Like Someone Needs A lot of Attention’ LP (Egg Salad Piss)
Little Claw – ‘Magik Markers Lite – 1/2 the Talent…Double the Ineptitude’ LP (Egg Static Place)
Various Artists – ‘Counter Cultural Magick For Trust Funders’ compilation featuring Wooden Wand, MV + EE and whomever else is calling themselves whatever this week (Pottery Barn)
Borebetomagus – ‘Balls Together (A true Celebration of Homoeroticism)’ LP (Big Bear)
JD Emmanuel – ‘If I Cared…I’d Own It’ LP (Sleepytime)
Drive By Diarrhea – ‘Drizzle On The Dotted Line’ LP (Parts Unknown)
Home Blitz – ‘Bloody Knuckled Ballad’ e.p. (Down For A Fight)
Various Artists – ‘Four Bands No One Will Give A Shit About In Two Years’ compilation featuring Pocahaunted, Emeralds, Robedoor and Orphan Fairytale.
Not much else to say ‘cept Darves for president in ’08…
Happy ’08 -- TR
STEFAN KENROCK: Stefan runs Ken Rock Records, one of our favorite Euro labels. Brainbombs, HFOS, Swinehood, we thank you Kenrock.
It’s hard to write about a year from a day to another, but 2007 was a great year. Kenrock put out eight 7” records; that is many for Ken. I did have some big trouble to getting them from the press factory, but they came at last...But this is not about Kenrock. So over to the stuff I was glad to be spinning on my record player under the year. Yes, there have been some highlights on the stereo.
Milk and Herpes Records did two fantastic records GUT REACTIONS and X OFFENDER, trashy and wild garage punk, yes yes I know we all heard it before, but when a new band does it great like these two, I get happy.
Spin the bottle records also put out some great records, HOLLYWOOD and FASHION! FASHION! AND THE IMAGE BOYS and DER SUBMARINE RACERS. The same goes for Boomchick who did the fantastic DAILY VOID 7” and Big Neck like always had much nice wax out.
But the most have been (as the year before hahaha), oh no, the art-punk is here and has blown the blues punk to the history! Or will it come back in year 2008?
I also like the SUDDEN WALKS EP on Never Heard Of It Records...a brilliant record.
And one of the most played records in the home of kenrock is the amazing super 7” from TITUS ANDRONICUS on Shake Appeal. Yes, lots of nice 7”es have seen daylight in the year 2007...I am not so much for albums. I like 7"es...
What has happened here? Sweden did not have any new bands...Black Bug and Zihps are two new bands that we may hear in 2008, but 2007 sorry nothing new here...
The rest of Europe is quiet except France, that now is the leading country of good bands (or it’s the same bands as in 2006, hahahah). The weirdest thing in England: yes they now have the DISCO LEPERS, they did a nice split and a fantastic CD last year...And the Hipshakes, but then the UK is a land in silence. Yes, hate me now, but I think the UK can do much more...Europe or the north of Europe is much retro punk and that is a bit boring.
Sad things in 2007:
...Underground Medicine and Zaxxon are slow or closing down, I will miss them. Nice places to find new 7” records. And that I missed THE MANS when they played here, how the hell did that happen?
Best show I did see last year was TUNNEL OF LOVE, and the BOOGIEFEST here in Goteborg even if I did break my arm in three places when I was on my way home...shit happens. So now I say bye bye, hate mails to my MySpace site, thanks!
COCOCOMA: Cococoma released their fantastic debut LP on Goner this year. Some of 'em are in Headache City too!
BILL: Bill plays drums and sings.
I sorta missed out on alot of stuff this year - but of what little I
may have heard, here's what I liked the best - unashamedly
Top 5 Albums:
1. Hex Dispensers - s/t (Alien Snatch)
2. Busy Signals - s/t (Dirtnap)
3. Golden Boys - 'Whiskey Flower' (Emperor Norton/Hook or Crook)
4. Sonic Chicken 4 - s/t (In The Red)
5. Cheater Slicks - 'Walk Into The Sea' (Dead Canary)
Mark Sultan - 'Sultanic Verses' (In the Red)
Harlan T. Bobo - 'I'm Your Man' (Goner)
Demon's Claws - 'Satan's Little Pet Pig' (In The Red)
Top 5 Singles:
1. Dutchess & the Duke - 'Mary/Reservior Park' (Boom Boom of Renton)
2. Tyvek - 'Summer Burns' 2x7" (What's Your Rupture)
3. Fe Fi Fo Fums 'I Just Wanna Boom Boom Girl/You Might Get Me' (Rob's House)
4. Wax Museums - 'Claw You Like A Cat' (Hozac)
5. Romance Novels 'Another Summer' (Pizza Party)
Too Close to Call Singles Honorable Mentions:
Grave Blankets - 'Your Injured Ways' (Record Time)
Mans - 'JC BC/First Love/Too Close' (Boom Chick)
Tuff Bananas - 'Dance To The Rock & Roll' (3-Dimensional Records)
Best 7" that almost came out in 2007 but will come out in 2008:
Hipshakes - 'I Want You Around/I Don't Know' (Slovenly, maybe?)
LISA: Lisa plays guitar and sings.
I don't really pay attention to new stuff, but that being said, every
year I do get REALLY obsessed by a few things, usually particular songs
or movie genres. 2007 was no different. My year in a nutshell in no
particular order or category: Sonic Chicken 4 - "Only Lose", Wax
Museums - "Locked in a Mall", Creep Outs, The Clique, Love's 1st LP,
Tommy James, Dave Clark 5 - 'Glad All Over' LP, "I'm Gone" - Paul Revere
and the Raiders, No Country for Old Men, Grindhouse, Zodiac, There
Will Be Blood, Savage 7, Cisco Pike, The Losers, Satan's Sadists, Play
it as it Lays (book and movie), Pointed Sticks at Radio Heartbeat,
Pets and Gentleman Jesse at Beat Kitchen, Haunted George in Columbus,
Sonic Chicken 4 at Ronny's, burgers on pretzel rolls, brisket from
Smoque, Tatter Mitts, and The Hollywood Cookie Diet.
MIKE: had a baby (Olive Rose), she is awesome.
BEN WALLERS/THE REBEL: Ben is The Rebel and a founding member of The Country Teasers among other things. We spoke to him back in issue 10 or so.
My memory isn't what it used to be and I am in the middle of a mental crisis; actually, I am over the mental crisis but I am playing catch-up cricket, so I haven't time to spend on something so pleasurably frivolous as a serious list for you. I am going to attempt one now OFF THE TOP OF MY HEAD:
1.THE 'FLASHFLIGHT' illuminating 185 gram FRISBY from Playhard Inc, Boulder, CO.
2. The 175 gram Disccraft frisby in neon orange. It has the best flight of any 175g frisby colour. Other colours are too heavy for flying or too hard for catching. If you don't believe me, it's true.
3. Discraft disc-golf discs.
4. The Associates - '4th Drawer Down/Sulk' double CD reissue with extra tracks.
5. You never forget your first brown leather jacket.
6. "Yes" and "The Loser" by Thomas Bernhard.
7. "The Marque of the 3rd Stripe" by Alexandre Singh (White Columns, NYC)
8. Sri Lanka's cricket team.
9. "Friends" by Ween; Deerhoof's "Friend Opportunity"; my friends!
10. Way down there at number 10, the heaviest machine since Bonzo, Sophie Politowicz, THE DRUMS.
THE DUTCHESS AND THE DUKE What more can you say?
BEST THINGS 2007 by LORTZ (THE DUKE)
1. WET T SHIRT WILD WEEKEND. Going to Orlando, meeting Rich Evans and Jeanie and
Yochi and the gang down there. Watching Electric Bunnies weirdo do karate kicks
in Rich's front yard, then speed off bare foot for an early morning jog around
the neighborhood. When the Fums played, getting the WAX MUSEUMS onstage to sing
back up when they didnt even know the words. Watching Carbonas waiting around
for coke when there was fun going on in the bar. Hanging out with Sarim and
Ethan and Billiams and seeing LFD play their amazing set and seeing the WAX
MUSEUMS play. These kids are the funnest band going right now. "Claw You Like a
Cat" will go down in history. Pizza pool party reminded me I am too fucking fat!
2. FE FI FO FUMS 7" on Robs House. Tried to pussy out on putting this out. Trey
held me to it, and it turned out great. Opened up the door for the...
3. DUTCHESS & THE DUKE 7". Just like everybody else, I have been through some
fucked up things in my life. I finally got the balls to talk about it. LP out in
the spring, mebbe a couple more singles. Tour of West coast at the end of March,
US tour in the summertime. Who knew playing depressing pussy music could be so
much fun. This is the most excited I have been about a band I am in in a long
time. Plus that TB review by Steve is fucking FANTASTIC! I only wish I could
make records as good as that review.
4. LEVON with the mustache, along with most the kids I met at WTSWW, have renewed
my hope in youth. I have never been all that tuned in or really cared to know
what has been going on, what bands are cool, cool shit people are doing, etc.
Easier to just pretend everybody else is fucking retarded and you are the only
one doing cool shit. This past year has showed me that there ARE great people
out there doing great things. Keep it up.
5. KK/BBQ coming back after my total fucking crybaby freakout breakdown last
year and playing on my birthday.
6. GROWING BALLS/GROWING UP/Using my real name for shit I do.
7. PING PONG!!! PING PONG!! PING PONG!!!
8. Getting to hang out with Oscar a bunch and play in a band with him. Getting
to play in a band with Ruben finally.
SHIT THINGS 2007
1. REMODELING MY HOUSE. Took out a load bearing wall, rearranged electrical,
replumbed some stuff. Sheet rock, paint, cabinets, all done by me and my woman
and Cousin Brian. There are still piles of shit all over the place. This has
made shipping record orders, something I fucking hate anyway and am wayyyyyyy
too slow at into an almost insurmountable task. This is why I signed to a record
label. So I dont have to ship records anymore. We'll see how this works out!
2. SUMMER was gone quick. Spent it at home fixing the house. No summer tour.
Will not make this mistake summer 2008.
3. STONED. If you see me in 2008 with a joint in my mouth, slap me.
GOOD THINGS 2008:
- CHEAP TIME ALBUM!!!
- CANDY AND THE CANES 7" on BOOM BOOM
- SULTANAS 7" on BOOM BOOM
- D/D TOURING!!!!!
- D/D ALBUM
- CAMPING WITH THE GANG! RECORDING THE NEXT D/D ALBUM AROUND A CAMPFIRE!
- PDX BENDER!!
- SUPER EXCITED for Bryan the WIZ to start recording more bands in his MAGICAL
- PING PONG!!!
Best things about 2007: Proposing to my dude and having him say yes, finishing Dutchess/Duke record (I guess some of that happened in 2008), 7-layer burritos without rice but with a side of nacho cheese sauce and about 7 packets of hot sauce, Sparks Light, getting a kitten for Valentine's day, pinball, joining Unnatural Helpers, sneaking into hotel swimming pools, going to Morocco and Spain on my honeymoon, Transformers movie, Sundays at my dad's, a family I nanny for giving me a Silvertone 1484, moving into a house and having a washer and dryer at my disposal, my dog, pizza in Prague, Big Buck Hunter with Noelle, drunk record parties in my living room, my giant pizza-party wedding that the Coconut Coolouts played, the Halloween feast I made for Ian and I (penne with alfredo sauce, bacon, mushrooms and chives, breadsticks filled with marinara sauce, and spargel fried in bacon fat with hollandaise sauce!), new bass as wedding present, Flight of the Conchords, riding camels in Marrakech, the Epiphone Dot I tricked my husband into letting me buy, Justin Hack's habit of putting clothes on my dog and taking photos every time he came over.
Worst things about 2007: How wasted Oscar and I got (and how shittily we played) at the first Dutchess and the Duke show also how shitty I felt the next day which played a big part in me missing my flight home, food poisoning from Marrakech, rat attack, crappy fucked-up fish tattoo with my cat's name on it I got in Prague, the day I puked uncontrollably all afternoon/evening long (although I did hold it together long enough to go pick up a Fender reverb unit I found on craigslist, so not all was lost), Mike Lucas stomping on my left foot at Budget Rock and causing about a pint of blood to escape from my big toe (thankfully, the nail didn't fall off), my left hand fell asleep for about a month, Dave Bessenhoffer moved to Austin, going to Morocco on my honeymoon and not knowing it was Ramadan (hence the Spain trip), blowing both speakers on my Sunn cabinet a month after getting it, getting super fucked-up in Lyon, France with Dejha and trying to climb a small mountain up to a giant lion statue that resulted in the loss of her cell phone and digital camera and my favorite coat, somebody stole my car!
Things to look forward to in 2008: Unnatural Helpers/Fall-Outs tour, learning to play the trumpet, (hopefully?!) getting another dog, seeing Robert and Mark K at SXSW, getting a haircut.
JAY REATARD: We interviewed Jay back in our very first issue. Now he's famous.
1. Ponys new LP - Fuck any one that says it's too indie. Get some taste punkers.
2. The Barbara's Live Shows - Imagine if a thrift store threw up on a buncha naked ugly guys who sound like the Electric Eels trying their hardest to sound like the Beach Boys.
3. Rob Evil's (of EVIL ARMY) comments after being raided by SWAT team on a drug sting:
"201 fucking sucked!!! Had to pay $2,500 to get outta jail. The Armory no longer exists. They took my guitars and Trans Am, but I'm getting everything back on Monday. I don't wanna go into the charges, but everything is fine now. Luckily they didn't take the Freddy Krueger pinball machine."
4. Eating a bowl of Pho' almost everyday!
5. Playing a kick ass show in Anaheim, Cali. Thanks for the rad time guys I owe ya one!
6. Rock Of Love - Watching this is so much better than most records I have heard this year.
7. Black Lips on Conan.
8. Best Diner ever in Croatia - Guy serving asked "You ever had Bambi sausage?" Ate so much I puked...
9. Eating a horse meat Philly steak!
10. Discovering the Tall Dwarfs back catalog.
Aaron from LiveFastDie aka Viking Thrust aka GoZac TermBo (online version ONLY):
"7 Things I Will Ramble on To You At Will About From 2007"
1. Japrocksampler - Julian Cope gives Japanese Heavy Rock the same treatment he did Kraut a few years back. With Head Heritage already a staple in every heavy rock fan's online reading the anticipated Japrocksampler didn't disappoint. Covering the roots of rock and roll in Japan, a little Japanese history and a whole lot about Blues Creation, Les Rallizes Denudes and Flower Travellin Band while devoting equal time to some of the lesser-knowns and also-rans. The book isn't a hack job either with a lot of research and in-depth criticism written in a style that even those unfamiliar with the genre looking for a survey course can grasp.
2. Rapidshare - Good? Certainly. Evil? You bet your ass. The final nail in the music industry coffin? Let's hope so. The hotly contested debate over file sharing has raged all over the place and really came to a head in 2007. Detractors claim it's literally taking bread off the table of anyone trying to make a living playing music. It's definitely turned on a lot of people to a lot of ultra raw and rare stuff spanning everything from Minimal Synth to Hard Psych to sub-sub-NWW list type shit. the downside: posting new records before they even hit the streets really does fuck with a band's bread and butter. But for everything else caught in that nebulous world of grey-aerea reissues and ultra high priced imports the NMP3 blog craze and it's accompanying enabler programs are a godsend. As this list is being written two formidable web presences have closed up shop. R.I.P. Lost-In-Tyme and Heavy Rock Spectacular...you will be missed.
3. The rise of Weird Punk - everyone goes all ass over tits about Weird Punk and experimental shit or anything that deviates from the Supercharger/Teengenerate school of songwriting. Lots of great records this year (Blank Dogs, Spider, Wizzard Sleeve) but this trend leads to the inevitable uncovering of some tangentially related bands and genres that should for very good reasons remain buried deep in the cut out bins. C'mon...no one actually really listens to Xmal Deutchland. Seriously.
4. B & C list former NBA player birthday announcements on TermBo - Where else on the internet are you going to find listings for Detlef Schrempf's birthday? I'm still waiting for the Tree Rollins appreciation post. TermBo is certainly becoming as - to paraphrase despised drummer Joe Tampoff - "The Manute Bol of Rock n Roll".
5. Selling out to Guitar Center for a free beer cozy - This year I had the opportunity to do a VBS TV Practice Space video. After making a bunch of incriminating remarks on the origins of a particular song the video hit the internet then a 2-page spread in a circular that was included with Vice magazine - GC logo and all. I got a free beer cozy. It was awesome. Suck on that corporate tit, kids!!!!
6. Mississippi Records - Double barrel attack from Portland's Mississippi Records camp. Lipa Kodi Ya City Council collects some choice African cuts running the gamut from rudimentary R&B to funk to choral and religious music, psych, folk. All the tracks were recorded between '68 and '72 and they avoid many of the trappings and cliches found on sub-par comps of western counterparts from those very same years. Life is a Problem gives a similar treatment to electric guitar based gospel. Not a sleeper or a dud to be found on either side plus the accompanying 45. Mississippi Recs. already has a respectable back catalog - albeit one that's mostly OOP - and with this kinda digging and quality control they've eclipsed Shadoks as my reissue label of choice.
7. Radio Heartbeat - Legit and responsibly priced reissues of the first 2 Hubble Bubble LP's, upcoming records from 20/20, Milk n Cookies and other tasty shit from the top of your want list...nuff said.
CAPTAIN BEYONCE of WIZZARD SLEEVE: Beyonce runs Jeth-Row Records from his Alabama compound and has also been in some of our favorite Southern bands of recent memory: Scrip+s, Kajun SS, a Loose Diamond, Mangina and more...We're planning an interview with him for an upcoming issue of TB.
Hello there termbo dorks...I'm not sure I am completely qualified to issue this "Best of '07" list but here ya go:
1. Final Solutions "FS/DF" 7" on Jeth-Row Records: Dude, I'm so glad someone put these early Solutions fist pumpers out.
2. LiveFastDie/Wizzard Sleeve split 7" on Jeth-Row Records: Wow man, that Jeth-Row guy really out did himself this year....two fucking records in one year...unheard of!
3. Darkthrone "F.O.A.D" on Peaceville Records: Shit whip crackers. This, their 13th record, is golden, err I mean blackened.
4. Carbonas " " on Goner Records: I can seriously listen to this at least three times in a row. Keep it up fags!
5. Hibachi Stranglers "Our City Doesn't Stink All the Time" on Florida's Dying Records: Aside from the stupid ass title, this record rules. Yeah yeah yeah, "Parking Lot"...fucking flip the record over...holy shit there's another song on there "DUB DEVOID"! Crucial dooode.
6. Florida's Dying Wet and Wild Weekend!: You really should have been there...twas a crack blast!
7. Snake Flower 2 at Gonerfest after party: First time I'd even heard'em...tight yo. EVIL ARMY outside at Goner-fest: Heavy Metal Parking Lot!
8. VOLT "s/t" on In the Red Records: I'm gay and I like to dance around with glow sticks shoved up my ass...what's it to ya?
9. My drunken FLIPPER tattoo by a hefty D&D t-shirt wearing turd.
10. EVIL ARMY "s/t" on Hells Headbangers Records: This technically came out in '06 but was just rereleased at the end of last year so deal with it. Mine is on what almost looks like camouflage wax.
STEVE A.: Steve Beat has been a long-time pal of TB, is currently in Rot Shit and was also in The Radio Beats who Troy interviewed back in Issue #2. He's also blogs it up via Big Ole Schleep and 7 Inch Slam.
All I want to say before I start is that taste is subjective. If you disagree, you should. I’m not you and you’re not me and all I want to do is listen to music that makes me feel something. If you can get down with that line of thinking, tell me your own personal Top Ten and I’ll give it a look, too. Thanks to Rich for this opportunity. It’s truly an honor.
1) Lamps – II LP (In The Red)
The throb of “Eliseo” kickstarts this gem, driving a pulsing spike into your veins and pumping you full of a single note that cascades from grainy to malicious over a two-minute span. The Lamps truly hit their stride in 2007, fusing the harsh troglodyte noise that pummeled you on their first ITR 12” with some tasteful, and much needed, overdub work that truly sets them apart from the pack these days. A quick listen to the closer “Now That I’m Dead” makes the point much clearer, moving from the monolithic thud of the opening riff to the lazy yet comely melodic leads that drone through and enkindle the right side of the brain, netting a listening workout in the process. Compare the Lamps’ new opus to your pores squeezing out every milligram of discontent that burns through your bloodstream, exfoliating your oils and putrid secretions into a palpable mass of vinyl that you can throw on and work through without the touchy-feely ex-flower child therapist making you roll on the floor like Sumner Erickson. The tunes are the tops here, with two cuts from the “Fred Astaire” Solid Sex Lovie Doll EP getting a better treatment in the studio (the rough versions are just as good, albeit much muddier). Points were deducted by not going solely with the Lion cover art that graces one side, but I’ll forgive them if they ever play the East Coast. It seems the Lamps have latched onto the rock version of Darwinism and are slowly moving towards walking upright to decimate any other organisms in their path. I, for one, welcome cell division. A top-notch well-sequenced effort, worth your hard-earned coin.
2) Brainbombs – Stinking Memory EP (Anthem Records)
Perhaps this was the year that I truly enveloped myself in a misanthropic funk that only harsh noisy sludge could split open. No one does it better than the Brainbombs. With the amount of jagged, droning, and mostly uninteresting slop clogging up the record shelves, it’s important to note that a band like Brainbombs could be seen as not only innovators twenty years ago, but continue to excite, offend, and give a voyeuristic thrill to listeners and musicians alike today. The final vinyl offering (we’ll see) of their career continued in grand tradition in 2007 with this slab of pure, vile, sonic butchery. Prepare yourself for one grinding riff churning like the guitars were full of confused hornets, some well-mic’ed toms, the squalling wretched trumpet we have grown to love and a frighteningly hazy yet clear vocal line repeats: “I was born/As a whore/I fucked Daddy/Before five years old/Sucked his dick/A stinking memory” until you’re pounded into your couch with despair and disbelief. The flip “Insects” is on another plane, melding more disparate parts together, seemingly breaking the Brainbombs’ “one-riff, one take, five minutes, one song” recording process with what sound to be multiple trumpet overdubs. This tune is more of a challenge as it creeps along instead of the normal bashing, similar to a past favorite like “Streetcleaner”, but I can picture almost every time I sat down in my living room and tossed on this platter waiting for the drums to kick out through the speakers. After that, then ten minutes flew right by.
3) Sonic Chicken 4 – S/T LP (In the Red) + live (11.07)
When you push off with a jangling hook-filled LP on America’s finest rock n’ roll label, two Euro EP’s that smoke, shut up any possible detractors with a jacked-up, danceable live show around most of the East Coast, and also manage to make reunited “classic” bands like the Chris Bailey-fronted fake Saints (whom they opened for in Pittsburgh) look like the lowliest of chumps, there’s not much more you need to say. Out of left field came this band Sonic Chicken 4, and the few who were there that night in Pittsburgh saw a band playing their hearts out and then making literally no door money while a bloated rock dog n’ pony show fifteen or more years past its prime kicked more dirt on its legacy and cleaned up financially. Such a travesty is akin to watching women sold into white slavery by your neighbor. But Sonic Chicken 4 managed to weld together the bits and pieces of the best of French pop, a batch of clean twangy Telecaster licks, a huge batch of fuzz, the Velvets repetitive grooves, the most enjoyable moments of 60’s garage, and tight catchy playing that should put a smile on your face no matter how much a jerk you are. Bonus points for quite a few ladies I’ve seen knowing how great this band is after hearing one chorus. Had I been introduced to this in the warm weather, it might have hit number one. A great effort, and I hate to be a back-patter here, but great people, too.
4) Goodnight Loving – Crooked Lake LP (Dusty Medical)
I feel kind of silly writing anything about this record after Dale Merrill covered it so well on Smashin’ Transistors back in September, but here goes. Goodnight Loving have stepped into the Reigning Sound’s shoes while Greg is busy playing acoustic guitar all day, but they’re not the same at all. So what shoes am I speaking of? Well, the most comfortable slippers that can relieve the aching dogs of anyone who gets the chance to put them on his or her feet. GNL hold the distinction of blending together tried and true tradition and a varied take on what we miscreants have deemed our spectrum in the underground music dungeon. And while this band and the Tyveks and Black Lips of the world will get bigger and bigger as we stay right where we are, I have faith that in writing songs this fresh, this reminiscent of some of the most fleeting yet joyful memories of being outside and moving and feeling the energy in the natural world around me will balance out all the negative vibes that pour into my brain every day. A stellar effort, note the warmer recording and songs that pop with a subtle weary toughness their first LP lacked, and “Money to Plaster” as Song of the Year #2. Creating a chorus this lovely thankfully isn’t illegal yet in the police state of our nation, and these gents would probably spit in a cop’s face if it was.
5) Goodnight Loving – Drafted Into War EP (Contaminated)
GNL pulled off Song of the Year #2 on their LP, but Song of the Year #1 belongs to the A-side of this two-songer from Alicja T’s Contaminated label. Here we find the band eschewing their rootsier tendencies to revel in pop that is layered like a tiramisu and just as addictive. The instruments are swirling, the organ is bouncing, the harmonies are pitch perfect and get an added boost from the lovely ladies in Vancougar, and when you have a hook so good that it never stops, you know you’ve chiseled another impression into the fresco of perfect love songs out there. I dreamt about one girl all year long who could make me feel the way this song does, and no matter what it could always remind me of her. Call me a pussy or whatever you like, but sometimes that’s all you need on a record: one perfect song. They did it. B-side is no slouch, and your money was well-spent if you gave this a shot.
6) Cheater Slicks - Walk Into the Sea LP (Dead Canary) + live (9.07)
I believe everyone reading this knows what I’m going to say, so I’m just going to forget about paragraph form and list what matters here: artwork that rivals Mind Eraser’s Cave in terms of B&W tumult and despair, perfect sequencing of stellar songs, Will Dyer recording that leaves absolutely nothing missing from any of the three instruments, tattered voices that hinge on ripping apart every chance they bellow, covers of the Gestures and the Wig (best tune, covering miles of ground on one chord), lyrics of “Walk Into the Sea” (Dear Michelle, I’ll see you in Hell/We didn’t do so well, I know/I smacked your head on the bed/And then I broke your collarbone), and song #3 of the year: “Westford Cemetery” with handclaps that put it over the top. Live on the first night of their short East Coast tour, they droned on and on, playing some of their biggest hits and the top tracks from this release, pummeling the crowd with unabashed glee at the white noise and hissing guitars till only the most dedicated were left. And every moment was precious. You already dig the Slicks. Wish you were there.
7) TV Ghost – live
Reviewers are all over the map in describing their sound, and I don’t believe my record collection is large enough to pull off rattling down a list of influences to impress the cognoscenti out there, so all I really need to say is this is the future. While this band continues to grow and expand and delve into more travelling and experience and playing together, we stand jaws agape staring into a supernova that climaxes with a punch in the face and beer in your hair. While the 7” hasn’t captured the feeling of their live show and the 12” is a ’08 release that still hasn’t dropped into my mailbox, rendering me unable to comment, the live show is where they will win fan after fan out there. Watching the bass player grooving along put enough of a smile on my face to wake me up in Chicago after the world’s worst nap. If only I was a roadie on that tour…
8) Fe Fi Fo Fums – I Wanna Boom Boom Girl EP (Rob’s House)
The Fums are the Fums and that should have been enough to convince you to buy their first three records. The LP was a winner, the singles are great and gone, and Rob’s House threw us a curveball like all great labels should by releasing this record and dropping Song # 4 of the year on us with “You Might Get Me”. Acoustic guitars, backups that sound so off they’re on, and lyrics that warn all the girls out there that they might end up loving an idiot like one of us. This is “I Want You Around” for the now. You can write a ballad and still be a shitty punk. If only more of the sheep would take that to heart we’d have less people banging on Moogs and more learning the two chords it takes to write a song this well. It’s a tragedy that we live in a world where Panda Bear is topping the charts writing songs influenced by deli trays and thousand-dollar guarantees and being discussed on NPR and these mutts are stuck in Washington State being loved by our little cabal, but their legacy is in the grooves and someday they’ll look back and remember when they strummed away at a tune that made somebody stop dead in their tracks and grin.
9) Midnite Snake – live at Iron Eden (5.07)
Those who know me know I will represent Pittsburgh to the worst of my ability all across the globe. I love my city and some of our bands and I make every effort to make it known when one is truly moving towards the elusive “next level”. That doesn’t mean that records like the Test Patterns, Ludlow, or Brain Handle EP’s or LP’s released this year haven’t stepped up our city’s punk/hardcore/garage/whatever game. But every band in Pittsburgh bows eternally in my opinion to the power of a juggernaut like Midnite Snake, which features Paul Quattrone from Modey Lemon and Pay Toilets member Jim Lingo, rounding out the lineup with Alexei Plotinicov’s unreal lead guitar mastery. Call it wanking, call it stoner hippie shit, call it whatever you’d like. But on this particular day, witnessing most of the city raging hard at an iron works under the Bloomfield Bridge to an instrumental psyche machine while dangerous metal implements dangled overhead, crusties shot off fireworks, and tripping my face off on mushrooms, it clicked. Who gives a fuck what people think about what you listen to? If you’re tapping into the animalistic sexual drive that powers guitar-based music, you’ve hit upon what every single band that got onstage tried to do. You want to seethe and sweat and sway and push and fuck and drip and on this particular night that feeling was inescapable. I waded through a filthy crowd of sub-humans to do it, but I walked away changed a little bit for the better. I should have put out both their LP’s when they asked me to. I suppose robbing a liquor store wouldn’t be the worst thing I ever did. The best party of the year; and that’s not a euphemism. It was a real party.
10) Tyvek – Summer Burns 2x7” (What’s Your Rupture)
It took me awhile to jump on the train, but after hearing this and the Tour CDR, plus their mesmerizing performance at Southpaw in Brooklyn this year, I am fully committed to the Tyvek Fan Camp. And it’s a fun place to be. Not only do you get to paw through every online distro looking for the vinyl, but you get to see them come to your town and play with bands like Japanther (who would be shining Tyvek’s shoes in a perfect world if they could get the duct tape off them)! Sounds great! And despite my ever-present imagined wit, I’m happy to be there listening to this band. Another case of feeling trumping the hype: I don’t even care that their drummer stands up while he’s playing, I just want to feel as happy as I do listening to “Needles Drop” again and again and again. Top-notch off-beat punk that has the power to change minds and I can’t wait to see what’s next.
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