2007 GREATEST HITS
LAMPS: The Lamps released some killer records this year and were interviewed by Scott Soriano way back in TB's "mustard yellow" color-scheme days here.
MONTY BUCKLES: Monty sings and plays guitar in The Lamps.
Ten Favorite Songs of Last Year:
- Brainbombs - "Stinking Memory" (Anthem)
- Wounded Lion - "Pony People" (as yet unreleased)
- The Intelligence - "Moon Beeps" (In the Red)
- A.H. Kraken - "Drop Sex" (Phil Scrotum)
- Sic Alps - "Description of the Harbor" (Awesome Vistas)
- Haunted George - "Weeks in a Casket" (as yet unreleased)
- Black Lips - "Bad Kids" (Vice/Die Slaughterhaus)
- Liars - "Freak Out" (Mute)
- Factums - "Drip" (Siltbreeze)
- The Rebel "Civilian Life" (Emperor Jones)
Things I am Looking Forward to in 2008:
- Sonic Protest Festival
- Season five of The Wire
- Kinks tour
(mostly the first two, though)
JOSH ERKMAN: Josh plays drums in The Lamps and took the pics for the 'Tim Ford' 7" sleeve.
Wizzard Sleeve - "Mommy's Little Baby" 7" (HozAc): the sleeve has a zombie, naked lady, and ice cream cone on it, hell
there is even a song with the word pterodactyl in the title - the
music is really good too.
Factums 'Alien Native' (Siltbreeze): a lost artifact exhumed from some post-apocalyptic landscape that
lulls one on the first side. Side two follows with the insanely
catchy thud and squelch of "Drip" and "Bomber". From the mysterious primitive artwork to the sequencing of the tracks
this truly feels like an album, rather than just simply a collection
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford: to be seen just for the lead up to the train robbery - forget that
Nick Cave has a painful cameo or that Brad Pitt is in it; I hear he
really likes architecture though.
Days of Heaven DVD (Criterion Collection):
falling peanut shells shot backwards make for an a OK swarm of
locusts. Finally a well done and proper DVD release of this film -
the transfer of this film is hands down one of the finest around.
Looking Forward to in 2008:
The Ferus Gallery - (Steidl & Partner) [May 2008]:
based on descriptions I have read this is going to be a humdinger -
about 400 pages of interviews and images from the upper echelon of
modern art in Los Angeles: Ed Ruscha, Ed Kienholz, Wallace Berman,
Bruce Conner and some other folks that are not nearly as interesting
A.H. Kraken: any new music - hopefully a record of some sort. Still
need to get my mitts on that CD-R. "Black Borny" - hot dog - that is
some good listening.
Tim Ford's Top Ten Blow Jobs I Got in 2007
Tim plays bass in The Lamps and is that guy on that sleeve to the right.
1. From Monty Buckles - July 4th, 2007 (Fireworks)
2. From Monty Buckles - July 14th, 2007
3. From Josh Erkman - April 28th, 2007
4. From Monty Buckles - January 9th, 2007 (My Birthday!)
5. From Monty Buckles - October 31st, 2007 (11:23 pm)
6. From Monty Buckles - November 1st, 2007 (12:05 am)
7. To Monty Buckles - August 4th, 2007 (It was sweltering hot, I was really drunk and confused. I did a great job though)
8. From Josh Erkman - December 24th, 2007
9. From some random relative of Monty Buckles - June 16th, 2007 (I can't remember his/her name, talent runs in the family though)
10. From Monty Buckles - May 1st, 2007 (Flowers everywhere)
MATT KORVETTE: Matt sings in Pissed Jeans and runs White Denim Records. We interviewed him not too long ago here.
TOP SINGLES OF 2007
- Navid Tahernia - 'Speicher 56' 12" (Kompakt)
- Brainbombs - 'Stinking Memory' 7" (Anthem)
- Mr. Oizo - 'Transexual' 12" (Ed Banger)
- Billy Bao - 'Fuck Separation' 10" (SS)
- Uffie - 'First Love' 12" (Ed Banger)
- Vampire Weekend - 'A-Punk' 7" (Beggars Group)
- Pink Reason - 'By a Thread' 7" (Trickknee)
- Tyvek - 'Still Sleep' 7" (What's Your Rupture)
- Los Llamarada - 'The Very Next Moment' 7" (SS)
- The Rebel - 'Tarscoffsky's the Snackrifice EP' 12" (Emperor Jones)
- Waste Management - 'Get Your Mind Right' 7" (Grave Mistake)
- Second Sex - 's/t' 7" (Because)
- Vicious - 'Igen' 7" (Feral Ward)
- Farah - 'Law of Life' 12" (Italians Do It Better)
- The Secret Society of the Sonic Six - 'Isolated Incidents' 12" (self-released)
- Blank Dogs - 'Yellow Mice Sleep' 7" (HozAc)
- Birth Refusal - 'Cove Core' 7" (American Tapes)
- Tyvek - 'Summer Burns' 2x7" (What's Your Rupture)
- Danava - 'Where Beauty and Terror Dance' 7" (Kemado)
- Sex Vid - 'Tania' 7" (Dom America)
Mattress - 'In Your Pocket' 7" (Malt Duck)
Eat Skull - 's/t' 7" (Meds)
Cheap Time - 'Spoiled Brat' 7" (Sweet Rot)
Television Ghost - 'Atomic Rain' 7" (Die Stasi)
TOP ALBUMS OF 2007
- Ricardo Villalobos - 'Fabric 36' CD (Fabric)
- Lil Wayne - 'Da Drought 3' 2xCD (Young Money)
- Burial - 'Untrue' 2xLP (Hyperdub)
- The Shins - 'Wincing the Night Away' LP (SubPop)
- Group Inerane - 'Guitars from Agadez' LP (Sublime Frequencies)
- Wooden Shjips - 's/t' LP (Holy Mountain)
- Guy Gerber - 'Late Bloomers' 2xLP (Cocoon)
- Randall of Nazareth - 's/t' LP (Drag City)
- Bone Awl - 'Meaningless Leaning Mess' LP (Nuclear War Now)
- Sightings - 'Through the Panama' LP (Ecstatic Peace)
- Prurient - 'Pleasure Ground' LP (Load)
- Clockcleaner - 'Babylon Rules' LP (Load)
- Mammal - 'Lonesome Drifter' 2xLP (Animal Disguise)
- Insect Warfare - 'Global Extermination' LP (RSR)
- The Cherry Blossoms - 's/t' LP (Black Velvet Fuckere)
- Dominik Eulberg - 'Bionik' 2xLP (Cocoon)
- Justice - 'Cross' 2xLP (Because)
- Busy Signals - 's/t' LP (Dirtnap)
- Blues Control - 'Puff' LP (Siltbreeze)
- Air Conditioning - 'Dead Rails' LP (Load)
Psychedelic Horseshit - 'Magic Flowers Droned' LP (Siltbreeze)
Homostupids - 'The Intern' LP (Parts Unknown)
Der Teenage Panzerkorps - 'Harmful Emotions' LP (Siltbreeze)
Lamps - 's/t' LP (In the Red)
LEAN STEVE: 2007 IN REVIEW
Steve was in some hardcore band long ago and is currently the bass guy in Homostupids and is responsible for The Factorymen 7" as well.
Clockclean ER's 3rd album easily kills any ballbag bullshit released in 2007. The three members got together once a week for several months and invented musics and lyrics. The two men and tit person went into the recording studio all at once and made a recording of the lyrics together with the music.
Those monkeymen Lamps put out a stellar 2nd album called "Lamps". Great name and production and mouth. I have no clue what the fucking lyrics are and that's how I like it best.
Goofs over at Fashionable Yambagger did the ridiculous Shoot it Up e.p. with the gay front cover. Ridiculous shit and the best small in size record of the year me thinks. They have a different drummer on there than their first e.p. which worried me for a few seconds. The throw the drums down the stairs shit was crucial. But then I started thinking the word "crucial" was for youth crewers and their boyfriends.
Out With A Bang from Italy played some gigs in the U.S. and shat in everyone's vegan burritos. Speaking of vegans, The Pissed Jeans managed to throw together the worst album art of the year or decade. Invite me to your houses if you own "Songs With Guys" and I can draw swazis and penis' on their photos.
Law And Order Criminal Intent moved over to the USA network this year with some lovely new scripts. Watch D'Onofrio take the shit to the dome and blow the case wide open every week on your cable system channel haver. Cable makes the smiles for me two times in the year with another zinger from our friends at HBO called Curb Your Enthusiasm. The new season introduced us to a character named Leon. Together with Larry and Leon, it's laughs abound!
Whew!! What a year! Blow me.
Ken runs Dirtnap Records and Green Noise mailorder/records as well. He put out that Busy Signals LP you kids love so much and plenty of other good stuff as well. And he's always a good sport when it comes to record reviews.
(in no particular order)
- The Ergs! - singles and live
- Tranzmitors - singles and live
- King Khan & The Shrines - 'What Is?!' LP (Hazelwood)
- King Louie and His Loose Diamonds - 'Memphis Treet' LP (Empty)
- Carbonas - s/t LP (Goner)
- pretty much everything on Douchemaster
- Goodnight Loving - 'Crooked Lake' LP AND 'Drafted Into War' 7" (Dusty Medical/Contaminated)
- Career Suicide - 'Attempted Suicide' LP (Deranged)
- Hex Dispensers - s/t LP (Alien Snatch!)
- DJ-ing again after a 3 year hiatus - an excuse to drink AND buy records. what more could ya want?
FUCKED UP: FU have released some of the best hardcore records of recent vintage (in the Editor's opinion) and you can stay on top of them and their always interesting vision here. I knew Damian and Jonah were skilled record collectors so I asked them what their best scores of the year were.
DAMIAN: Damian is the heavy-hitting frontman of FU and owns a lot of records.
Due to the fact that I didn't really have a job this year, I was forced to resort to the most pure form of record scummery: crate digging. The following are the fruits of days spent getting my finger tips dirty. While there are certainly no Velvet Underground acetates on this list, I learned that with a little work I don't need eBay.
10. Mumps - "Rock and Roll This, Rock and Roll That" 7": $5
9. Ceramic Hello - "Climatic Nouveaux" 7": $10
8. Chain Of Strength 7" (with silver sleeve): $4
7. Blue Rodeo - 1st single: $20 (I think this is only really a score in my little sad world)
6. Spoons - first 7": $15
5. The Haskels 7": $4
4. a bunch of rare Sex Pistols and Dead Kennedys singles for real cheap (but is this really a score?)
3. Rage 7", Dry Heaves 7", The Tweeds - "If I Could Only Dance" 7", Bunny and the Lakers 12", a few others: $30 for the bunch
2. Free records (technically not digging but you have to dig up people to be your friend and give you free records right?): Deathwish 7", Turning Point 7" (gold vinyl), Blossom Toes - "If Only for a Moment", Fever Tree - s/t LP (mono), Patto - s/t LP, etc.
1. Hits and Misses opening in Toronto...score of the year.
JONAH: Jonah plays drums in FU and is also the guitar player in Career Suicide and also owns a lot of records.
TOP TEN OR SO RECORD SCORES FOR 2007:
By no means can I truly keep up with the best of
the collector set, but here are a few notches I was
glad to put in my belt:
- LIP CREAM - 'Night Rider More Than Fight' and '9 Shocks Terror'
- HATES - first single
- STALIN - 'No Fun'
- LOWLIFE - 'Leaders'
- AFFLICTED MAN - I'm Off Me 'Ead
- THE NOW - Development Corporations (a tease though, wish I had the other one too)
- ROKY ERICKSON - 'Mine, Mine, Mind' on Sponge
- IRON CROSS - 'Skinhead Glory'
- DENNIS MOST - 'Baby, Come Back/Tough Break' 7" ($5!)
- WARM GUN - EP
- SYMPTOMS - 'Be on Top/Annorexia Nervosa' 7"
- REJECTORS - 'Thoughts of War'
- LIGHTNING RAIDERS - 'Citizens/Criminal World' 7"
BEST/WORST NEW RELEASE:
JOHNNY MOPED - 2XLP: More of a cultural export than
anything, this LP is either an affirmation: the warmest,
most endearing artistic confrontation of a listener;
or the greatest swindle unleashed on the punk
consumer since 'The Secret 7-inch'.
DX: DX is the dangerous mind behind the Distort Cult Hardcore zine (and website) and also the frontman of Aussie ragers Straightjacket Nation (who will be toruing the US in spring 2008).
TOP TEN FANZINE WRIT 2007
Great year for fanzine writing. I have a pile of 'em right next to me that're gonna yellow on the shelf w/ old copies of Forced Exposure, MRR, NOMAG, NY Rocker, etc. Great! I'm not going to spend much time attempting to explain the resurgence in the fanzine being seen as something that is still relevant and interesting: it probably sits between people's archaic need to identify with the "authentic" and people's historic want for lavatorial contemplation. There are plenty of courses being taught all over your country and mine where nerds can sit and analyse words like these, though if you're interested in their opinion, I'm sure you're not a TB reader! These are my favourite reads over the past year. All the US content should be easy to track down, but for any of the Australian content email me: distorttheworld-at-gmail.com.
1. CLOCKCLEANER feature in MRR #288
They make for excellent interview speak. John Sharkey seems to have taken on the caustic wit of an Albini circa end of Big Black, just to keep things interesting. I'd never heard this band before I picked up the new MRR on a stand in My Minds Eye in Cleveland, and read it on the spot. I grabbed the Frogrammer record, and so it goes.
Best quote of the piece is definitely "one time I fist-fought a scab and beat him so bad that he couldn't look out of his eye for about three months". One time a scab tried to run me over in his car
2. SADISTIK EXEKUTION feature in UNBELIEVABLY BAD #6
Australian sick death metal fukks giving a history rundown. Features great lines like "[our] first meeting was totally fukkkkiing insane, like all you fukkwit poofter readers wouldn't understand it" and "apart from bands we were always influenced by heavy sounding stuff like bombs, war, freight trains, volcanos, heavy machinery, and so on" which made me want to like their music if only to listen to it while reading their stories of breaking up over and over and over again. Unbelievably Bad is a great Australian fanzine which covers a broad range of stuff – death metal, punk, hardcore, etc. – and every issue has a standout feature.
3. VIOLENT MINDS feature in DUMB HARDCORE #1
Very informative interview with Zach, the brains/brawn behind one of the better modern Negative Approach fucks Discharge hardcore bands. The rest of the first and only issue of this Australian zine swings between standard Schism/TOH worship to just straight up excellent no bullshit writing: "you can't download a clue, son" and "it's about simplicity, it's about being straight to the point". Includes a My War records discography if you need me to paint the picture further as to the kind of calories you'll be eating here.
4. PINK REASON feature in Z-GUN #1
Zine of the year, though I probably don't need to tell YOU about it. This piece definitely turned me onto some cool shit. Pink Reason's LP is one of my favourites from '07, but, like I said, I probably don't need to tell YOU that.
5. BRAINBOMBS feature in Z-GUN #1
Like I said, zine of the year. This Brainbombs piece is written by someone who evidently thinks they are a much better writer than they are – they devote a lot of space in the classic rock crit style of distracting and dancing around the points they're trying to make, as if to emphasize their perspective is of IMMENSE importance to understanding the nuances of these Swedish atrocity apologists, but all told it's an engaging read. Thanks, pal.
6. WARKRIME feature in MRR #whatever and NOG GUILGY #1
These young scumbags provide a good read. More than anything else it's pretty tiring dealing with people out to "offend" and piss people off, and at first I thought their intent was trying to be the new VILE. Fortunately that doesn't seem to be the only aim of this bay area punk band, and their singer can be surprisingly articulate and seems to have a good sense of humour. NOG GUILGY is the other name for Australian hardcore zine, NOT GUILTY, covering the newer names in the NO WAY affiliated US scene as well as the better bands in my country.
7. COLD SWEAT feature in DISTORT #14
Sorry, folks, but as a fan, reading and rereading this interview has kept me happy throughout year. To throw out a hard hitter like 'Blinded' and then seemingly vanish? You had to know more.
8. HOMOSTUPIDS feature in DIRTY ALLEYS/DIRTY MINDS and TREBLE HIGH, TALENT LOW
"I was eating acid with a friend and we came up with the idea of a band called Homostupids". "It's important for our recordings to sound like absolute dogshit. Blown out and urgent – like we ran in, jumped up and down, rolled around, plugged in, unplugged, plugged in again, moaned and wailed". Homos are high quality and Steve Peffer is a lexicon devil. DA/DM was my favourite local zine of last year. Described as a "rock n roll scum paper stack", it's a charming read of Meltzer-esque babbling 'bout the good fight. TREBLE HIGH, TALENT LOW is outta NY state, some college dormhouse I think. Brandon is his name. He likes Peffer too.
9. SOAPBOX #4
Band names dropped throughout this issue: YDI, FU's, NIHILISTICS, AVO. Featured are Negative Trend, White Pride, Even Worse Records, Total Abuse, Warkrime and Jungle Fever (?). Weird, not really consistent, full of senseless hatred. "I'm an angry scumbag and I like to mess with people. I don't fucking care what people think of me. I hardly socialize, I can barely function in society. Nobody controls me and never will".
10. GAG REFLEX from DISTORT #17
Again, sorry to masturbate online, but who hasn't want to read Wedge, a Cle-titan of epic proportions both physically and "artistically", articulate the depths of the Gag Reflex back story? You?
A-FRAMES: The A-Frames have been supporters of TB from day one (I think the first "great job" e-mail I received after first putting TB online was from Erin) and are some of the nicest people on the planet. They are working on their 4th LP and are also doing some great work with Climax Golden Twins under the AFCGT moniker.
MIN: Min, formerly known as Cholera, plays bass in The A-Frames.
I've never been one to reflect on a recently finished year in terms of highlights or lowlights. I do that kind of thinking only several years after the fact (when lamenting to myself about how old I've become), but I'm sure I forget about a lot that way. So I was glad Rich asked for my take on 2007. It's always nice to be asked your take, especially by someone such as Rich and especially when the implication is that other people might be interested. But beyond that, it's helping my slowly failing memory muscles get some needed exercise!
In no particular order:
TV Ghost. When I first heard them on myspace, I was shocked that anything on that site could flatten me like that. Pleasantly shocked. I can't wait to get a chance to see them live because all reports are glowing and raving. I must point out that when all feedback is so uniformly adulatory then expectations can be unrealistically high and contribute to a greater risk of unjustified letdown feelings. But I hope I'm wrong about that because my expectations are already in the stratosphere. Reminds me of the excited feeling I got when I first heard Karate Party. Not that they sound like KP, but it's a similar stimulus.
Cormac McCarthy. The Road, even though published in 2006, was the best book I've read in years. Admittedly I don't read a ton of books, but still. And No Country For Old Men was the best modern release movie I've seen in a long time. All the praise for CM is totally right on.
Pink Reason. Have you ever found something you really dug, then lost track of and forgot about, only to rediscover it years later but on a new, deeper level? Kevin gave me a CD when we were in Green Bay in 2004. Once we got home and listened to the pile of CDs and records picked up from the road, it stood out as easily the best thing we got. Yet somehow it slipped into a forgotten void for a couple of years until Pink Reason came out west to tour. That reconnected us and reminded us not only of the powerful spells PR can cast, but the songs had grown to reveal new levels of subtlety and expression.
Climax Golden Twins. They played a show at this shitty bar whose name I won't mention, but this show was insane. I don't know how to describe it - disorienting for starters. They can weave between ambient, psych, rock, blues, free jazz, etc. like squids who are yoga masters. Yet their unimpeachable aesthetic and finely honed intuition prevents them from merely jumbling and juxtaposing different shit together. Amy Denio showed up with her sax and played with them, sometimes singing. Nobody (and not CGT) knew that would happen. It was captivating.
Pyramids. We (A Frames) have been lucky enough to have caught the Pyramids wave since day one. While they've always been really good, now they are unstoppably awesome. Last year's AF/Pyramids tour to California was a highlight of the year for sure, especially as those guys grew night after night into this incredible monster of a band. Increasingly, I'd be more looking forward to seeing their set than playing ours. They need to tour more, it's good for them. Matthew's quick right/left head snaps between verses shows he's reloading for the next line. Craig's sexy baritone voice and scratchy guitar scrapes get that itch scratched the fuck out.
Wounded Lion. Lars turned me on to this L.A. band. The song I heard is easily as good as Television Personalities - that is to say it's pop. Not angry, not distorted, has hooks but the hooks are deceptively simple and very pleasing. The singer uses his voice to sing, and sing melodies! Other than that, I don't know anything about them. I just fell in love with that song.
Mixtapes from Wolfgang Acker. In 2007 I received the first mixtapes, actual cassettes, since I don't know when. 2001? And not only that, they're fucking awesome ones. Ones where I haven't even heard of 90% of the bands on it AND it's all good to great! Wolfgang is a music fanatic living in Berlin that we met on tour. He has a mysterious criteria for his tastes, but it has an internal logic and it always works. Some of my new faves from the tapes are Deja Voodoo, Rochee and the Sarnos, and Video Hippos.
Factums. The 'Alien Native' LP brought into sharp focus what some in Seattle already knew since the beginning -- that Factums are the real deal when it comes art punk, being the crossing point between abstraction and structure. For me, the LP also served as a reminder of how big an impact the track sequence has on a set of songs. I'd heard these songs for a few years but in a different order. Hearing them in this sequence affected me even more somehow. I was lucky enough to catch almost every show of theirs this year, until Dan moved to Chicago in June. Hopefully there will be one-off shows when they can pull them together, but who knows.
Eddy Current Suppression Ring live in Austin. I admit, their set started and my arms were crossed, as if saying "Go ahead, uncross my arms, see if you can." The first song only reinforced my sKeptical stance (it was about ice cream after all), but by the third song I was convinced of their greatness and fully acknowledge my wrongness. After the show we tried to find the party they were at but couldn't find it.
Meeting Ivan Brunetti. I got my Schizo's signed, got a photo, and bought more stuff of his. He's a really nice guy, seemed medicated yet still nervous. Everyone owes it to themselves to read his comics.
Le Sang Song. What a great album of late night, candlelit personal songs. Some have an understated propulsion moving them along, others are more of a songwriter narrative type. There's violin, piano, among other things coming in and out of the album. The lyrics and vocals are especially nicely done -- maybe because most stuff I hear doesn't put much focus on the lyrics and vocals that it's easier to notice when they're done well. The whole disc gels together completely into it's own thing. Craig Chambers is the guy behind this, when not doing The Pyramids or The Lights. I was enamored right away, and quickly fell in love with it.
Sublime Frequencies. This label started out with top notch releases of music from the most remote corners on Earth, but they really stepped up their game down the stretch. Not that there's much competition, but it is strange how they could even get better. Omar Souleyman blew me and Erin's minds instantly with their Syrian Kurd techno grooves. And Group Inerane just kill us with their resistance blues rock. Music as weaponry, in perhaps the most real sense possible.
ERIN: Erin, aka Emphysema, sings and plays guitar in The A-Frames.
BEST OF 2007
Thanks to Rich for asking, hope there's something useful for someone in here. Never done this before so apologies if it's long and/or boring.(...in no particular order...)
Factums - Great releases and some of my favorite shows of '07. I'm sad that Dan their amazing guitar player and primary documentarian has moved to Chicago, but between the back catalog of existing material and some long-distance collaborating I'm hopeful there will be lots more to hear still. Siltbreeze LP - I just wanna hold it and look at it as well as listen - total tactile experience.
Los Llamarada - Jesus that SS 7 kicked my ass! I was already hooked from the LP so it wasn't totally unexpected - but that thing sat on our turntable for quite a while. Hope I get a chance to see these guys live sometime soon.
Pink Reason - Everyone here knows this story of course, and a pretty fucking good story it is... I can't wait to hear the new LP and whatever Kevin has in store for us next.
Climax Golden Twins - Another fave show of the year for me was these guys - Amy Denio showed up unexpectedly to play sax and sing. I stood next to Min the whole set not believing our ears - we were convinced this was the result of planning and practice but of course were totally wrong & the entire set had been improvised. Their new LP 5 Cents a Piece is also great. Min describes them pretty well in his list - this is the record you put on, go about your business, and at some point say to yourself "what the fuck is this again??" - an unending variety of sounds come from these talented folks.
Group Inerane - Well covered on TB - totally amazing.
Billy Bao - 2 perfect extended pieces of total destruction rock + beautiful presentation = something you gotta own! this is what makes me want to buy records. I can't explain it, but downloading Billy Bao seems somehow ridiculous?
Blank Dogs - I want my Blank Box!!!
Siltbreeze - Been a fan of Dead C and Harry Pussy for a long time - I love this guy's aesthetic and what I've heard of the new releases have been true to the vision here. xNoBBQx, TPK, Factums, Pink Reason, Psych HS, you all know the list better than me probably.
Le Sang Song - Our friend Craig from the Lights and Pyramids doing bedroom recordings - great range of mellow grooves that makes you feel like you're sitting there right next to him getting your own performance - from Can to Cohen and more. I really hope this gets released in '08...
Pyramids/Hexentanz - This band is so good! Just saw them again a few nights ago and they sounded better than ever. 2 piece guitar and drums with both singing - they both know how to lead a song so together they create an almost relentless kind of pop/art/noise/weird/punk that has something for everyone, but it all gels together with it's own primitive punch. I've always had a soft spot for 2 pieces - I love how punked out and direct it usually sounds - but these guys are able to pull off more variety than most in this format.
TV Ghost - Read about these guys in a post by Kevin on TB early on - one visit to their myspace site and I was hooked. How could these kids make such haunting, timeless apocalypse punk? Youth as the future past. Anxious for the LP and a chance to see em live.
Z Gun - Thoroughly enjoyed the first issue. Looking forward to number 2.
Franz Liszt - 'Tasso: Lament and Triumph' - I like classical, what can I say. I actually always have to some degree. I remember laying in bed when I was a kid listening to a Rachmaninoff cassette on my walkman as I went to sleep - gay, I know. Other nights it would be 'Planet Caravan' by Black Sabbath if that's any consolation - which it probably isn't (life WAY before the internet motherfuckers! it SUCKED!). Anyway, I'm pretty dumb about the genre overall but Franz Liszt has always had a special appeal for me. We picked up a record of his stuff at a thrift store a while back and on those windy rainy Northwest nights it's hard to beat. It kicks off with these dramatic symphonic chord changes that remind me of the start of an old horror movie or something - very loud and ominous, then it slowly descends into the story - peaceful and serene - but you know something evil is lurking on side 2. I torture friends with this at excruciating volumes during late night drunks at my house frequently...a real party killer in the same vein as the more bummer Teasers records (which I also love).
Plymouth - I'm a gin drinker and this shit is the best if you're into gin - it's even drinkable at room temperature! Sounds crazy (and disgusting) but I swear it's true. Not the cheapest but also not the most expensive by any stretch. I've hooked many friends on Plymouth - even some who vehemently claim they don't like the taste of gin. No other booze buzz compares in my humble opinion. If you like waking up at 4 am with a pounding headache, fully dressed, every light turned on, turntable spinning, a thirst like you've been crawling through the desert for days, and not remembering anything past round 3 - this is for you my friend.
Omar Souleyman - More genius from the Sublime Frequencies folks. I found out from Alan Bishop recently that the original versions of many of these songs are like 50 minutes long! I wanna hear that shit! Understandably they edited things down to make an easier entry into this music for the rest of us - and it definitely worked on me. Track 4 (Atabat) is one of my fave songs of the year. 8 minutes of sparse kicked back Syrian Kurd groove - occasionally interrupted by machine gun oud attacks and piercing stabs of keyboard swapping with prophetic erie trance enduced vocals (apparently with lyrics whispered into the singer's ear during performances by another dude??!!) . Islamofascist punk! Give me an hour of this shit any fucking day!
Myspace - Understandably there are lots of different opinions on this. I definitely was a skeptic and a late joiner, and still there are things I don't like about it. But I'm not really a purist as far as how I hear music is concerned - I just wanna hear it. And this seems like a great way to hear lots of different ideas without much commitment - no vinyl to buy, don't even have to download. So here is a list of things I heard and liked on Myspace. Some already had releases I didn't know about, some have come out with releases since I first heard them, and others may or may not get past there: TV Ghost, Art Thieves, UHF0462, XWAVE (seems to be lots of cool primal weird Aussie stuff around these days - I'm into it), Slicing Grandpa, Arachnid Arcade, Spider, Dead Luke, cccandy, Dolphins Nazis, Wizzard Sleeve, Diamondhead, Flea Apparitions, etc etc... Admittedly I am a fan of the unusual and genre-challenged, so if that's not your deal then you'll probably want to ignore most of this list...
TB - And I want to say thanks to all you TBers - from both the site and the message board. I appreciate hearing about music here - of all kinds and from all ears and eras - without you the workday would be even more mind-numbingly dull and depressing than it is. Where else can a guy like me learn stuff from both a grumpy old curmudgeon in Sacramento AND some teenage girls in Vegas? God bless the internets, or praise Satan or something.
Partying with bands who played/stayed with us is always a highlight of the year for me - something to liven up the working life drudgery. Also my karmic payback for all the people who hooked us up on tours over the years. Thanks all and come again soon, beers on me.
Take care and have a great 08.
Alicja Trout: Alicja is a woman of many talents: former/current member of Lost Sounds, Nervous Patterns, The Clears, Black Sunday, River City Tanlines, The Fitts, Mouserocket, Ultracats and more, runs the Contaminated label and distro, records bands at her Tronic Graveyard studio and also added mother to her resume this year. We interviewed her way back in issue #3 of TB.
Ahh, another year of overlooked greats. It's okay 'cause I have always had the premonition that people WILL eventually find the good stuff, might take 10-20 more years. I dunno, seems like now we are flooded with sorta okay punk 7"s but everyone is like, "Have you heard this band?" and next thing you know they are trying to book tours and comin' and going everywhere and it's very anti-climactic when you see/hear them.
King Louie and the Loose Diamonds LP "Memphis Treet". King Louie proved that he can do a better version of the Exploding Hearts song that he co-wrote (or just wrote?). But my favorite track he placed/hid second to last on Side B, "Untitled Lament". King L doesn't even truly title it. But this song, the words are perfect. Spent the last year taking walks, cookin food at home and just havin' talks, he's reflecting on his sordid past, robbed Peter to pay off Paul, he sinned a lot and now he's reflecting, and then he stands up endearingly to his mom, "I might notta turned out the way you dreamed I would but I'm the only one you got", I'm sorta summarizing the song rather then paraphrasing. These are just a few, there's tons more great words here, especially "My name is King now, I'll hang my head low...(pause)...tomorrow." And the catchy happy guitar pickin' part...shewy. Point of this, where is songwriting? It's here. I'm getting old. Slow it down for me, stop all the screamin' and fussin' and blastin' through. I want to NOT be able to control my toes from tappin. Once again Jack Oblivian's title track to his 2007 platter, 'Flipside Kid', is just this. Killer hit. Record is full of them, nothing new for Jack, same old good stuff keeps coming with fun litle production tidbits all over, canned audience applause, neato barely detectable synths or some sorta toys. I thought Goodnight Loving followed their first album with a great second, just as good, a little more lo-fi, and they toured it around and sounded great. Golden Boys' 'Whiskey Flower', Matthew Melton's Snake Flower II CD (due out officially on Tic Tac Totally in 2008 if you missed it), Test Patterns, and lastly the Thomas Function's collection of singles. I also was glad this year some people started to really buy up some Digital Leather.
For me it was a pretty big year because my resolution of 2006 going into 2007 was to "yuppify" my life a bit. I decided then to stop all this madness, freelance jack of all trades BS that was driving me all over the whirlwind world and keeping me running in place. So I had my plan mapped out to go for it, get a graphics design job (went to art school and already had six years experience in video graphics) and man, I'm gonna have some nice things dangit! Some insurance, one o' dem laptop computers and razor phones, go out for a martini...heck...maybe I can actually buy a round of drinks at the next Gonerfest for my friends and not worry about overdraft charges. But I got pregnant. I spent 2007 cramming. Cramming tours, sleeping in backstages or in the van, feeling pukey, wanting a burrito as soon as I woke up. Jeans getting tighter. Last hurrah in July, Chicago. Collecting baby gear, throwin out a buncha stuff, fixing the hole in the bathroom floor. I recorded a buncha bands in Memphis at my studio, the Tronic Graveyard, and finally, I felt my technique was good. Booked the Human Eye European tour, recorded a buncha Black Sunday stuff...cram cram cram. Baby born November 2nd 2007. Now my life is like it was at 17, lotsa TV and movies and chill time and long walks. Reflection time. Staring at the kid, watching her grow. Like a gardener or something. It's super nice. Race race race and one day it's over.
2008 I'm gonna watch a baby grow. Hope people enjoy the records I recorded last year that will surface this year. Black Sunday (2 split 12"s), Mouserocket (LP number two) and River City Tanlines (7"), some lost Lost Sounds stuff, and bands I recorded: Cola Freaks, The Come n Go, Twinkle Van Winkle, the Perfect Fits. Happy 2008.
LARRY HARDY: Larry runs In the Red Records and was interviewed by Trickknee in our very first issue.
Here's my top stuff of 2007. In the interest of not being too biased I didn't
list my own releases. It goes without saying that I liked those.
- Black Lips - 'Good Bad Not Evil' LP (Vice)
- Tyvek - 'Summer Burns' 2X7" (What's Your Rupture?)
- The Scientists - 'Sedition' CD (ATP)
- TV Ghost - 'Atomic Rain' 7" (Die Stasi)
- The Horrors - 'Strange House' CD (Loog) + live show at El Rey
- Haunted George - 'Pile O' Meat' LP(Hook Or Crook)
- Final Solutions - 'Songs By Solutions' LP (Goner)
- Billy Bao - 'Fuck Separation' 10" (SS)
- Liars - s/t CD (Mute)
- Goodnight Loving - 'Crooked Lake' LP (Dusty Medical)
- Blank Dogs - 7"s (Hozac/Sweet Rot/Florida's Dying) and 12"s (Freedom
- Nothing People - 7"s (Hozac/SS)
- Grinderman - s/t CD (Mute)
JACK VOLT: Jack was the frontman of French favorites the Splash Four and is currently part of the trio known as Volt along with his wife Lili Z. and FX, who were interviewed in our very first issue.
Too many old records and books, some REISSUES too:
-Alemayehu Eshete - Ethiopiques 22 (Buda Musique)
-Tsegue-Maryam Guebrou - Ethiopiques 21 (Buda Musique)
-V/A - Cassetten Combinat box(VOD)
-Church Police "Gilligan's wings" 7"(Skulltones)
-Don Howland - 'Land beyond the Mountain' LP (Secret Keeper)
-V/A - 'Poetry And Languid Charm - Swahili Music From Tanzania And Kenya' (Topic)
-V/A - 'I Don't Feel At Home In This World Anymore 1927-1948' LP (Mississippi)
-V/A - Lipa Kodi Ya City Council LP (Mississippi)
-Brainbombs - s/t CD (Pollymagggoo)
-Skitlickers EP ("Fan Club")
-Black Mirror CD (Dust to Digital)
-V/A - Shangai Lounge Divas Volume 2 (EMI Hong Kong)
-V/A - Mexican Boleros CD (Trikont)
-White Noise Electric Storm CD (Island)
-V/A - Lagos All Routes/Lagos Chop Up CD (Honest Jon)
-V/A - Bollywood Bizarro CD (Paris Jazz Corner)
And a few NEW SINGLES too:
-Wizzard Sleeve "Mommy's Little Baby" (HozAc)
-Eddy Current Suppression Ring "...Honest With You" 7" (White Denim)
-Factums "See Inside" 7" (Pollymaggoo)
-TV Ghost "Atomic rain" 7" (Die Stasi)
-Sic Alps "Semi Streets" (Skulltones)
-Feeling of Love "Jordan's rules" (Rococo)
-Tyvek "Summer Burns" 2x7" (What's Your Rupture?)
-Meercaz "Unlust" 7" (Autoproduct)
-Fabulous Diamonds EP (Nervous Jerk)
A few solid LPS:
-Sic Alps "Description of the Harbor" LP (Awesome Vistas)
-The Intelligence "Deuteronomy" LP (In the Red)
-Factums "Alien Native" LP (Siltbreeze)
-Der Teenage Panzer Korps LP (Siltbreeze)
-Eddy Current Suppression Ring LP (Dropkick)
-Group Inerane "Guitarz from Agadez" LP (Sublime Frequencies)
Very few exciting shows but some memorable ones:
-Young Marble Giants
-Sic Alps in a cave
-Mahmoud Ahmed/Le Tigre des Platanes
-Allemagne, les annees noires - Musee Maillol Fondation Dina Vierny
-Alfred Kubin (1877-1959) - Musee d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris
-Grupo de Experimentacion Sonora del ICAIC
Most ANTICIPATED in 2008:
-Lili Z - 'The Two of Us' CD
-V/A IVG Lp
-Der Teenage Panzer Korps new LP
-Brainbombs live at Sonic Protest
STEVE LDK: Steve is the mastermind behind Low Down Kids, a co-conspirator on the 45 Revolutions book (and blog) and was also in some bands himself...
Pleased to finally get the '45 Revolutions' book completed and out there. Mario'd sure been in deep long before I came along, but I worked on it 20+hours a week for seven years and it was tough to call it 'done', cos stuff kept coming up and we knew that it'd be never-ending (we were right: Anti-Social were eventually found two weeks later!), but once Mario started tweeting like a bird and running round Venice dressed as Gina Lollobrigida in "Buena Sera, Mrs. Campbell" and I began to stay up all night talking to the invisible martians it became clear that, for medical reasons, we'd better say enough's enough. Anyway, came out OK, so all's well that ends well. More people should post comments on the blog, though.
Bought some records. None of them even vaguely modern, of course. The only band I'd cross the street for these days is Roosbeef. Who are Roosbeef? Thing is, although Roosbeef (once they've got a better name, obviously) could be the new millenium's all-conquering "Ziggy"/Jobriath/"Psychomodo" Biba-ful kabaret (with a 'k') international Glam royalty, Roos seems more and more drawn to localised cabaret (with a 'c') and gawd only knows what the bass player and guitarist get up to during the vast expanses of no band-action. It's extremely disappointing. I've offered to take them under my wing but, mysteriously, they've declined. Whodathunkit, I know...
Sold some records. None of them even vaguely modern, of course. I even sold a couple from my own collection, so now I'm Jones-ing for replacement copies (Tinopeners, Anti-Social, the pic sleeve for the Graham Fellows EMI single...). Can't win 'em all.
New year's resolution: get with the programme and start seriously punting stuff on eBay, everything described as "KBD monster private powerpop, only 200 pressed, rocking horse teeth". It'll be my one and only concession to the modern world, but hopefully I'll get a warm feeling as I'm enveloped in the seller-crowd's bountiful bosom!
LANE H.'s TOP TEN IN TEN MINUTES 2007: Lane is the kind fellow who runs the always dependable Die Stasi record label.
Cherry Blossoms s/t LP -- The first big surprise of 2007 for me. At times it sounds like a jamboree rumbling down the road, at other times it's got an off-kilter folk vibe while still managing to be as organic as their diets undoubtedly are. Co-release between Blackvelvetfuckere and six or seven other labels.
Factums "Alien Native" lp -- Originally released a couple years ago as a cd or cd-r but put down on the true format by Siltbreeze. A-Frames and Intelligence involvement is apparent with the Factums fitting somewhere between the two. Nice mixture of "real songs" and more atmospheric stuff.
Thomas Function "My Empire" 7" -- Any of the Thomas Function singles can fill this hole. Excellent pop songs ala the Modern Lovers but, uh, poppier. Pop-haters don't front, Thomas Function is doing it right. Pop. Released on Arkam in a really beautiful package.
Mattress "Have you Heard" 7" -- Another pleasant surprise here. Crooning over an electronic backing that recalls some of the more sparse 80s dancehall. King Jammy should version it. Released on Malt Duck with lots of TLC (bonus cd-r, and thank-you note were included in mine).
Pink Reason "By a Thread" 7" -- Probably my most listened to record other than the Cherry Blossoms lp. The "Cleaning the Mirror" could easily have made the list too, but the 7" format works better for the man on the run (me). More straight-forward than the other Pink Reason stuff. All that means is the songs are shorter. "Devil Always Wins" sounds like a traditional and should become one. Released on Trickknee Productions.
Group Inerane "Guitars..." LP -- Sub-Saharan rebel music! The primitive recording only emphasizes how INSANE some of this stuff is. How do you make a guitar play in reverse?! Seriously impressive female "backing vocals", too. AHYAYAYAYAYA! Released on Sublime Frequencies who deserve a gold star for this and Group Doueh alone.
Tyvek "Still Sleep" 7" -- Another band with great quality control and while the 2x7" is probably the obvious choice, I picked this one cause I dig the laconic vocal delivery instead of the I'vegotsomanythingsgoingoninmyheadandtheyallwanttocomeoutmymouthatthesametime that's usually going on with Tyvek. I love that approach too, of course. Released on What's your Rupture?.
Terrible Twos "Radical Tadpoles" 7" -- Terrible Twos, Frustrations and Tyvek are all doing great stuff with a voice that's instantly identifiable. TT really came into their own on this one with some sick prog-punk. Released on the always reliable X! recordings.
His Electro Blue Voice "Fog" 7" -- Hey, what do you a know - a band who's able to make good use of the soft/loud/soft aesthetic, or in HEBV's case, I should say dream/nightmare/dream. The guitar sounds like it's being reluctanly dragged along by the drums, add the Italian accents to make this a great one. S-S Records.
Psychedelic Horseshit "Magic Flowers Droned" LP -- Loooo-fi brokedown pop that sounds a lot like the Strokes first album put through the paper shredder and then glued back together with a 50 gallon drum of crude dub. I imagine losing your mind sounds like this. Glitches here and there and then total disentigration with flashes of lucidity (i.e. the b-side). Released on Siltbreeze.
Time's up, but let me drop a couple more before I split: Blank Dogs (anything), Frustrations "Glowing Red Pill" (X!, CD only right now, but I hear that's getting fixed), Der Submarine Racers 7" on Spin the Bottle is the most obnoxious thing I've heard in a long time, The Mans are making serious trash with a wallop, Michael Yonkers "Carbohydrates..." is excellent, the Gay Beast LP, either Times New Viking LP, Los Llamarada... all these things are worth some attention!
HOMEBLITZ: Daniel Dimaggio is the moving force behind Homeblitz and the Giants of Jazz radio program. He dueled with Young Steve back in TB issue six or so. (in alphabetical order):
- Blank Dogs - The First Two Weeks 12"(Freedom School)
- Blues Control - s/t LP (Holy Mountain)
- Cadaver In Drag - Raw Child LP (Animal Disguise)
- The Dictators - Every Day Is Saturday 2XLP (Norton)
- Homostupids - The Intern LP (Parts Unknown)
- Jarvis Cocker - Jarvis LP (Rough Trade)
- The Marbles - s/t LP (Vinyl Countdown)
- Pink Reason – Cleaning The Mirror LP (Siltbreeze)
- Bobb Trimble - Harvest Of Dreams LP (Secretly Canadian)
- Whitehouse - Birthdeath Experience LP (Very Friendly/Susan Lawly)
- Andrew WK - Close Calls With Brick Walls LP (R-Jayne/Dope/Load)
WOODEN SHJIPS: Ripley from the mysterious Wooden Shjips answered our request. They were cool enough to send us a free record back before they blew up. Thanks again!
The Bad Trips - s/t LP (Rocketship Records)
Los Llamarada - The Exploding Now LP (S-S Records)
Blues Control - S/T LP (Holy Mountain)
Tinariwen - Aman Iman: Water Is Life (World Village USA)
Suishou No Fune - Writhing Underground Flowers (The Lotus Sound)
Expo 70 -Animism (Kill Shaman)
Der TPK - Harmful Emotions LP (Siltbreeze)
Sic Alps - Description Of The Harbor LP (Awesome Vistas)
Sapat - Mortise and Tenon LP(Siltbreeze)
Noah Howard - The Black Ark CD (Bo' Weavil)
"Psychedelic Phinland: Finnish Hippie & Underground Music 1967-1974" 2CD (Love Records)
Terry Riley - Les Yeux Fermes & Lifespan CD (Elision Fields)
Harmonia - Live '74 (Water)
V/A - Life is a Problem LP (Mississippi Records)
Judee Sill - Live in London (Water)
Baby Grandmothers (Subliminal Sounds)
The Films of Kenneth Anger vol 1&2 DVD (Fantoma)
The Films of Alejandro Jodorowski DVD Box (Anchor Bay)
FLORIDA'S DYING: Rich Evans runs the always great Florida's Dying label and distro and has done more for the current state of underground rock than most of us, all they way from the Sunshine State. We're working on an interview with him as we speak (and have been for a few months now, I know...)
“In 2007 everything was weird”
The Black Lips were everywhere, Jay Reatard is becoming a teenage heartthrob, Home Blitz sold out to camel, Blank Dogs put out a careers worth of music in less than one year (and without even playing a single show), I got to put together my first music festival and the best crop of music came out in my entire life.
Here’s a list of everything awesome in 2007:
1. The Wet T Shirt Wild Weekend
2. Touring with the Hibachi Stranglers and Jeanie and the Tits
3. Psychedelic Horseshit and Pink Reason live at Crooked Bayou
4. Getting to interview Mike O'Brien from The Eat
5. Seeing the Black Lips on Conan
6. all the great bands I got to put out this year
7. the punks in Orlando
8. Getting to see the Spits twice at Ground Zero
Singles from 2007 I listened to most this year (other than my own):
1. Factums 7” (Polly Maggoo)
2. Wizzard Sleeve/Live Fast Die split 7” (Jeth-row)
3. Human Eye- Rare Little Creature 7” (Disordered)
4. The Dutchess and the Duke 7” (Boom-Boom)
5. Apache- Crystal Clear 7”(Douchemaster)
6. Tyvek- Summer Burns 2x7” (What’s Your Rupture)
7. Nothing People- In The City 7” (S-S)
8. Static Static – Black Fingers 7”(HoZac)
9. Der Submarine Racers- Space Burrito 7” (Spin the Bottle)
10. Pink Reason- By A Thread 7” (Trick Knee)
Top 10 12"es:
1. Jay Reatard- Blood Visions (In the Red)
2. Psychedelic Horseshit- Magic Flowers Droned (Siltbreeze)
3. Daily Void- ID CODE... (Deadbeat)
4. Blank Dogs- First Two Weeks 12” (Freedom School)
5. Busy Signals- S/T (Dirtnap)
6. Dead Hookers- Rebirth (Deadbeat)
7. Intelligence- Deuteronomy (In the Red)
8. Golden Boys- Whiskey Flower (Hook or Crook)
9. Cheater Slicks- Walk Into the Sea (Dead Canary)
10. Hue Blanc’s Joyless Ones- Arriere Garde (SS)
ARTURO: Arturo is a long-time friend of TB and a charter member of the TERMBO NYC chapter.
2007: Lotsa good records, few great ones. I like most of the newer
stuff but few things have made me flip out like in older days. I think
I bought and listened to more 60s psych reissues and other older music
than anything else. Here's some stuff I did like as well as older
stuff and movie shits since that's been taking over my life.
Cheater Slicks "Walk Into The Sea" LP - more rockers than "Yer Last
Record" with a few beautiful downers which no one does better. "Westford
Cemetary" is one of their best and up there with their classics. Still
the most powerful band on earth.
Michael Yonkers and The Blind Shake "Carbohydrates Hydrocarbons" LP - a
monster of a record. Heavy and rockin' plus Yonkers' weird charm.
Jacuzzi Boys "Ghost Ghost" 7" - I leave florida and all these great
bands pop up. This one is my favorite of the bunch. Dark catchy psych
done right. My fave single of the year. My most "looking forward to
hearing more and seeing live" band.
Group Inerane "Guitars From Agadez" LP - Thank fucking god someone put
this out on vinyl. The first time I saw this band on the Music from
Niger doc on Sublime Frequencies I was blown away and mesmerized. The
most beautiful and sincere document of the year.
Der Teenage Panzer Korps LP - great album which I didn't hear much talk
about. Reminds me at times of the Screamin Mee-Mees.
Kaleidoscope "Faintly Blowing" LP - brilliant 60s pop psych up there
with the best of em. A true CLASSIC.
Cassetencombinat LP box set - great document of 80s west Berlin
underground. Great packaging and most of all great music. Worth every
Raxola and Hubble Bubble LPs - two classics that got the much needed
legit reissue treatment. I actually prefer the Raxola record. NOW
SOMEONE PLEASE REISSUE THE SODS LP FOR THE LOVE OF FUCKING GOD!
I Don't Feel At Home In This World Anymore 1927-1948 LP - not sure if
this was a follow up to the Last Kind Words comp but it makes for a
great companion. Brilliant set of pre-war jams.
Brainbombs CD - great to have all these singles in one place. Good work
Sleep's Holy Mountain LP - didn't know much about these guys before this
year, but I'm glad I got this. Not much of a stoner rock fan but this
is in a league of its own.
MOST MEMORABLE SHOWS:
PSYCHEDELIC HORSESHIT @ Cake Shop - first time I saw them I didn't care
for them, second time I saw them I thought they were pretty good, but
this third time was one of the funniest, sloppiest and greatest sets
I've ever seen from any band.
CHEATER SLICKS @ Don Pedro's - always a treat to see this band. Haunted
George and Guinea Worms were a sweet bonus.
MAHMOUD AHMED @ some park in Paris - only a couple hours after I had
arrived in Paris me and the lady friend went to go see Mahmoud Ahmed.
Took us forever to find the place and when we did he only had about 3
songs left. Then he came back for an encore and did his thing again.
Not many chances to see a performance or performers like this. Pure
ALAN VEGA/SIMPLY SAUCER/ONEIDA @ Southpaw - Simply Saucer were ok. I
still don't know if Alan Vega was good or not. He sang while some
chick did techno shit and sang annoying backup vocals. It was
irritating and entertaining at the same time. I'm glad he didn't do
any hits really at least not until the end when Oneida joined him for
a great version of "Rocket USA." Oneida's set was great especially
only knowing about them by name only.
JACK LEE @ Radio Heartbeat - you had to be there.
OLD BAND I FELL IN LOVE WITH IN 2007: The West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band.
BEST FILM OF 2007: Before the Devil Knows You're Dead - watch it with your folks.
FUNNIEST MOVIE OF 2007: There Will Be Blood
BEST QUOTE: "Look at that fucking bone!" from No Country For Old Men.
BIGGEST DOUCHE: Billy Mitchell from King Of Kong
BEST DOCUMENTARY ABOUT A FONT: Helvetica
"THANK GOD THESE FINALLY CAME OUT ON DVD" DVDs:
- JODOROWSKY Box Set - Pretty cheap, plus it includes killer soundtracks.
- THREE FILMS BY HIROSHI TESHIGAHARA - all three movies are outstanding and
- KENNETH ANGER films - haven't actually watched these DVDs but having
seen most of the films its great to know they're easily available.
- CRIA CUERVOS - brilliant 70s Spanish film by Carlos Saura. The scene
where Ana Torrent lip syncs to "Porque Te Vas" is one of my favorite
scenes in any movie.
- SWEET MOVIE - golden dicks, naked chicks bathing in chocolate, Vienna
Aktionists, plus Pierre Clementi. What more could you ask for?
- MONSTER SQUAD - a classic from my early years. It was great to see it again.
TOP 10 MOVIES NOT OF 2007 THAT BLEW ME AWAY
1. SHADOWS OF FORGOTTEN ANCESTORS (Sergei Parajanov) - goddamn.
2. ZIGEUNERWEISEN (Seijun Suzuki) - less pop art/more surreal than his
previous films. Tokyo Drifter has been a long time all time favorite
but I like this one even more.
3. SORCERER (William Friedkin) - One of the most tense movies I've ever
seen. The original (Wages Of Fear) is just as good.
4. LANDSCAPES IN THE MIST (Theo Angelopoulos) - The hand coming out of
the water is cinematic poetry at its finest.
5. EQQUS (Sidney Lumet) - one of the most uncomfortable movies ever.
6. IN A GLASS CAGE (Agusti Villaronga) - few horror movies are actually
scary or disturbing. This one is. A good movie to test people with.
7. MIKEY AND NICKY (Elaine May) - one of the finest American movies of
the 70s. I like this one even more than some of Cassavetes's own films.
8. WERCKMEISTER HARMONIES (Bela Tarr) - patience testing poetic cinema at its best.
9. THE BED YOU SLEEP IN (Jon Jost) - Christ, whatta flick!
10. MAX MON AMOUR (Nagisa Oshima) - Oshima is the director I became
obsessed with late this year, mainly due to this movie. Just released
on DVD too. Woman falls in love with chimp, hilarity ensues.
- The Prisoner - best show ever
- Sarim - dude is sick
- Reuben sandwiches from the deli by NYFA in Union Square - delicious
- Completing my first short - happy with how it turned out
- Month in Paris - good times
AND THE AWARD FOR "MOST BEAUTIFUL SPIRIT" GOES TO…
MIKE SNIPER - an inspiration to humanity. Never stop chasing those
dreams of yours.
THE SUSPICIONS: these kids knocked our socks off way back in 2006, so much so we even interviewed 'em. And congrats to Karen and Bryan!
Hey everybody out there in rock and roll land. Nick from the Suspicions here. The dudes and dudettes over at Terminal Boredom want us to write some junk about what was rad and what was bad in 2007. I’m pretty boring when it comes to obscure bands that your uncle Rodney used to play in so your gonna hear about some serious Top Forty shit instead.
This guy Karl that I work with at the hospital is a giant Frank Zappa fan. He had an extra ticket to Zappa Plays Zappa and took me. It was awesome. There were so many old weirdos there. A bunch of weird beards in trenchcoats and old chicks with long flowing dresses. The guys in the band were all amazing. The dude on the drums had a lot of drums and cymbals, and used all of them. The best part about the show was that I got a good view of Dweezil and all I had to do for Karl was buy him beer and a couple of fish tacos.
The best music festival of 2007 had to be Florida’s Dying Wet T-shirt Wild Weekend. Rich from Florida’s Dying flew my other band out there to play and I got to see some good bands and meet some cooler people. The best band there by far was Live Fast Die. Other notable bands were Jeanie and the Tits, The Wax Museums, and the Electric Bunnies. The singer of the Electric Bunnies raises skunks and grows exotic fruit. I think his name was Elved. He would get up super early after partying all night and go running and do yoga in Rich’s front yard. The only way that that weekend would have been better is if the Suspicions and the Coconut Coolouts got to play.
Enough music talk. Here’s the rest of what’s best in '07. Lakai Skateboard shoes put out their new skateboard video “Fully Flared”. It was ridiculous. Marc Johnson’s part was three songs long. It was mind boggling. Besides Guitar Hero, my favorite video game was We Love Katamari. The Japanese are the best.
2007 was a good year for the Netflix. I’m just about done with the 4th season of The Wire. Hands down the best series ever. It’s better than the Sopranos. My wife is from Baltimore and they really do talk like that.
And finally the best food of 2007, hot wings. Hot going in, hot going out. I can eat a number 4 wing at the Wing Dome. I still have yet to try the #7. My friend Charlie says he’s going to invent a new wing flavor. He’s going to call it the Scud. Like the Iraqi missile. When you order the Scud the ambulance gets called. If the wings don’t kill you, then the next morning you’ll suffer from the dreaded Scud Butt!! Hotter than a hot poker up your butt. All people beware the most dreaded wing of all. The Scud!!!
Oh yeah, I finally bought some new drums. Gretsch Catalina Maple drums from guitar center with a nice red wood finish. Now I can finally learn those Judas Priest drum parts. 2008 watch your ass!!
Alright, thanks Nick, deep thoughts man, really makes you think. For me, uh, Bryan from the Suspicions, 2007 was the year I watched lots and lots of videos on Youtube. At work, before parties, after parties, first thing in the morning, last thing at night, while recording bands.
Speaking of recording bands, I bought some sweet recording equipment last year. I got a Teac 80-8 tape machine and a sweet Teac 5B mixing board. I bought the mixing board off some dude in North Carolina via craigslist. I should have been suspicious when he was so willing to ship it to me. After a few hundred dollars in repairs, the tape was rollin’. I also got a pair of old Shure SM81 mics that’re totally sweet for snares, floor toms, and acoustic guitars. But my favorite mic I got all year was my Shure KSM27. It’s new, but it sounds old and smooooooth. Vocals are hot and drum overheads sound bitchin’. So there you go. Next year, Karen and I are gonna buy lots of tape and baby clothes!
KAREN/GUITAR & VOICE:
Karen’s 2007 wrap-up, in list form because I’m old-fashioned that way.
What I listened to in 2007:
- The Go “Howl on the Haunted Beat You Ride”
- Sappy oldies from the Luna Park Café jukebox, like Shades of Blue, Clyde McPhatter, and Ruby and the Romantics
- Boyce and Hart, The Monkees, 1910 Fruitgum Co.
- The Boomtown Rats, XTC, and the Soft Boys
- 20/20 live at Radio Heartbeat!!!
- “Hat Nerd” by the Four Eyes, played approximately 10,000 times at the weddings I went to this year
- BearForce 5, the Dutch all-bear sensation
- Everything Bryan recorded in the Magical Basement
The best of the rest:
- 2 AM snack cake runs after Radio Heartbeat shows
- Dancing with one of the bouncers and a bunch of middle-aged women to 20/20 at Radio Heartbeat
- The “Bordello of Blood” featuring Sir Mark: King of the Vampires, Boys Club, and the Suspicions
- Finally playing in Canada
- The Coconut Coolouts CD release party, featuring a complete set of Coconut Coolouts impersonators
- Joining the community symphonic band on the flute, in which I am one of approximately four people under 65
- Accidentally launching my music stand into the audience during the holiday concert for said community symphonic band
- Mighty-O Donuts, fancy sheep’s milk gouda, and peanut butter and bacon sandwiches
- Getting knocked up and not having to change the litter box for half of 2007
RY WHARTON/SKULLTONES RECORDS: Ry runs the Skulltones label, plays in Snake Apartment and is helping us with the incredible TB Reviews database which will hopefully get launched real soon (if the editor ever gets his shit together).
- Angels of Light- We Are Him 2LP
- Rhys Chatham- A Crimson Grail CD
- Cloaks- A Crystal Skull in Peru CDR
- Clockcleaner- Babylon Rules LP
- Earth- Hibernaculum LP
- Electric Wizard- Witchcult Today 2LP
- Daniel Menche- Wolf's Milk CD (and the rest of the Utech Arc Series)
- Naked on the Vague- Blood Pressure Sessions CD
- Portal- Outre LP
- Sightings- Through the Panama CD/LP
- Ed Yazijian- Six Ways to Avoid the Evil Eye LP
- Blank Dogs- First Two Weeks 12"
- Brainbombs- Stinking Memory 7"
- Distance- Fallen (Vex'd Remix) 12"
- His Electro Blue Voice- Fog 7"
- Human Eye- Spiders & Their Kin 7"
- Landed- Creeping Hand 12"
- Shackleton - Blood On My Hands (Ricardo Villalobos Apocalypso Now Mix) 12"
- Spider- Charlie 7"
- Valet- Fire 7"
- Wooden Shjips- Sub Pop 7"
- Carol of Harvest- S/T LP
- Lubos Fiser- Valerie and Her Week of Wonders OST LP
- MB- Symphony for a Genocide CD
- Peter Martin & Finch- Drouyn Soundtrack CD
- Poll- Anthrope LP & S/T LPs
- Raxola- s/t LP
- Various: Broken Flag: A Retrospective 5LP Box
LARS FINBERG/THE INTELLIGENCE: Lars was once an A-Frame and is now The Intelligence. Jeff interviewed him back in Issue #8.
Sic Alps “Description of the Harbor”. Besides Amy Winehouse this is my favorite record of 2007. I got an early CD-R of this early in the year and wore it out. We got to play with them twice in San Francisco and they were mindblowing. I got to play drums on one of my favorite songs “Message from the Law” both nights (and again in Seattle). Spending a weekend with Mike and Matt (who would also emergency fill in on bass for The Intelligence amazingly without practice in SF when our bassist had to fly home early on different tour) was a huge highlight of this year. I basically bought everything laying around in Mike's apartment when I got home. Ruben and the Jets LP, Quixotic, Mingering Mike and Sigmar Polke books, etc. And getting to record some with Mike and see some of their process, even their practice space is inspiring. They also make great videos, check youtube.
I guess technically tied for first is THEE OHSEES. This band has been my favorite thing going since the first time I saw them a few years ago when it was more acoustic/singing saw/brushes and snare; it was incredible then and what it’s evolved into is the best. We got to see them just after New Years last year in SF and it felt like watching the V.U. or something. The way that they sound like a futuristic idea from the past is perfect. I just can’t find a flaw in them. AND I'M LOOKING. Also you should check out our old bassist Calvin Lee Readers movie “Little Farm” that features some songs from their last record. His movie 'The Rambler' is great too.
Next would be Deerhunter, we went to see the Ponys here having no idea who Deerhunter was. We stood there mesmerized holding our single empty beer bottle for 45 minutes. I can’t remember being that blown away. I love their LP “Cryptograms” but I think the EP that comes with the vinyl, ‘Flourescent Gray', is one of the best things this year (and most others) by far. Haunting and beautiful. And I really like reading about Bradford Cox, and his blog. The Atlas Sound LP is my most anticipated LP of 2008 (along side The Breeders!)...there’s songs up there all the time, the Mark Sultan cover is great and the song "Christian Names" is thrilling.
Wounded Lion from LA, who have no released stuff yet, was another favorite, I think SS is doing a split single. A refreshing and charmingly inept band, kind of like The Shaggs meets Talking Heads and T.Rex only catchier. The’ve recorded at the Distillery with Mike Mchugh (who is the Intelligence’s true highlight of 2007 along with Montgomery Clayton Buckles) and are one of the most exciting and funnest bands around. When we played with them in LA I had their song “Pony People’ in my head for the rest of the tour.
A classic. Once we started covering it it was far and away the best song of the set. Rats.
New songs from VOLT! Great to be able to play the singles in the car now and "Chinese Bite" is my favorite of theirs. INCREADABLE and frightening live and the most inspiring and supportive people ever. Shots! TYVEK here was great great great, another show standing there with a single empty drink. It’s nice to feel like you are truly in the presence of something again. Highlight was the noisier guitarist putting his wig on the end of his guitar and stomping out the back door to play in the alley and his guitar getting unplugged, then stomping back in and searching though all the cords to find it, plugging back in and stomping back outside. During "Honda" I think. Spider single was one of my favoites but the unreleased song "Boozetown" is one to the best songs I’ve heard from the Wood world. You all know the Lamps are dominating and it was heartwarming to see their rototilling version of "Bee Hive" start their set with AFCGT who should be grilling your sorry heads soon. Times New Viking were great and “Devo and Wine” is one of my favorite songs this year. Golden Triangle in NYC are killing it, I dunno, no-waving Jefferson Airplane? Jefterson party barge? SSSSSpecters were fantastic too, kind of a friendlier Vulvettes. I loved Cheveu live, great people and their tour CDR was one of the most exciting ‘releases’ this year for me too. I kind of blew the mix, but recording them was a huge honor. They record themselves perfect anyway. Watching Susanna crunch a sandwich on a stool watching David scream though a guitar amp was a favorite vision. Pyramids and Factums, Matthew Ford is the entire package, look away. Le Sang Song CDR, whoever picks up on this and puts it out (the whole LP) is going to be a winner. I loved Psychedelic Horeseshit shows here, but Davis was amazing. Another show that felt special seeing it. Best creepy eyebrows and somehow very funny but not silly.
SOUTH BAY SURFERS. Wow. I also really liked the Panda Bear record and I like the Liars song 'Clear Island" a lot too. I play the Los Llamarada 7" a lot too.
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