2008 GREATEST HITS
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 is also a mother. We interviewed her way back in issue #3 of TB.
Best of 2008:
- HUMAN EYE touring and 'Fragments of the Universe Nurse' LP (Hook or Crook)
- TEST PATTERNS live in Memphis. Got horribly drunk on tequila.
- New Orleans NOT having another post-Katrina disaster.
- Fred and Toodie sounding tough again with PIERCED ARROWS at Gonerfest V.
- COLA FREAKS song "Control/Alt/Delete" and live at Goner Fest V.
- Terrence (bass player for River City Tanlines) as Gene Simmons in KISS THIS,a Kiss cover band on Halloween.
- Yo Gabba Gabba
- Christmas is fun again when you have a kid.
Worst of 2008:
- Some of the newer Memphis bands really suck.
- King Louie didn't release an album this year.
- Memphis crime.
- Gas prices $4.00 and up.
- Hard to find good soul food plate lunches in Memphis now, Miss Ellen's is closed all the time.
- Poop, lots of poop. Some puke and a lotta poop.
ARTURO M.: Arturo is a long-time friend of TB and the man running the Academy Records mailorder operation that you keep hassling.
BEST MUSIC OF 2008
ALBUM: Pink Noise "Dream Code" (Sacred Bones)
- Dan Melchior Und Das Menace "Christmas For The Crows" (Daggerman)
- Ooga Boogas "Romance and Adventure" (Aarght!)
- Frustration "Relax" (Born Bad)
- Thomas Function "Celebration" (Bomp/Alive)
- Lili Z "The Two Of Us" (Polly Maggoo/In the Red)
- Josephine Foster "This Coming Gladness" (Bo'Weavil)
- Hospitals "Hairdryer Peace" (hospitals)
- Human Eye "Fragments Of The Universe Nurse" (Hook or Crook)
- The Rebel "Northern Rocks Bear Weird Vegetables" (Sacred Bones)
- Naked On the Vague "Blood Pressure Sessions" (Siltbreeze)
- Dutchess And The Duke "She's The Dutchess, He's The Duke" (Hardly Art)
- Drunkdriver "Born Pregnant" (Parts Unknown)
- Druid Perfume LP (PIGS)
- V/A Emergency Room (Nominal/Grotesque Modern)
- V/A Shiftless Decay (X!)
REISSUE: The Nixe "Anthology" LP(Polly Maggoo)
- Tommy Jay "Tall Tales of Trauma" LP(Columbus Discount)
- Bachs "Out of The Bachs" LP (Void)
- Soggy LP (Memoire Neuve)
- Rusted Shut "Hot Sex" (Dull Knife)
- Robot Assassins EP (Sweet Rot)
- IVG comp LP (Poutre Apparente)
- Animals and Men "Never Bought Never Sold" LP (Mississippi)
- The Clean LP (Little Axe)
- And anything else Mississippi Records did...
EP/7": Nerve City "Bars" (Severed Hand)
- XYX 7" (S-S)
- Titmachine (both, one may have come out last year but I didn't get it till this one so it counts)(Siltbreeze/Meeuw Muzak)
- Finally Punk (both, see above)(M'Ladys/Army of Bad Luck)
- Vermillion Sands EP (good year for all girl/girl fronted bands)(Rijapov)
- Dave E & Cool Marriage Counselors "Searching Thru Sears" (Christmas Pets)
- Apache "Boys Life" (mainly cuz of the B-side though)(Douchemaster)
- Love Tan "This Land Is No Good" (Sweet Rot)
- Francis Harold & the Holograms "The Eagle Can't Fly" (Going Underground)
- Golden Error 12" (Shandi)
- AFCGT 10" (Dirty Knobby)
- Medication "Don't Die" (HozAc)
TAPE: Nerve City "Sole Survivor"
BEST NEW BAND: Nerve City
Runners Up: The Pheromoans, The Beets, Drunkdriver
BEST LIVE BANDS: TV Ghost, Tyvek, Cheap Time, Naked On The Vague.
BEST LABEL: Sacred Bones (some releases not a fan of, but they put out a lot of the best records of this year. Plus the work that goes into every release and holding an aesthetic makes it admirable.)
Runner up: Columbus Discount Records
Stuff on most wanted list I finally got that I'm happiest about: tie: all of Michael Yonkers' Seventies folk albums and The Ex 'Disturbing Domestic Peace' LP
BEST TERMBO LOL: Robocop 'Right To Remain Trppin Ballz' pic
TOP MOVIES OF 2008:
Top 25 of my favorites seen in 2008 not that came out in 2008 since I barely saw any new movies last year.
Ordet (Carl Th. Dreyer / 1955) // Hitler - Ein Film Aus Deutschland/Our Hitler (Hans-Jurgen Syberberg / 1977) // The Wind (Victor Sjostrom /1928) // Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (Karel Reisz/ 1961) // Sansho Dayu/Sansho the Bailiff (Kenji Mizoguchi / 1954) // The Servant (Joseph Losey / 1963) // Two Lane Blacktop (Monte Hellman / 1971) // This Is It (James Broughton / 1971) // Opening Night (John Cassavetes / 1977) // La Hora de los Hornos (Fernando Solanas / 1968) // Greed (Erich von Stroheim / 1924) // Une Femme Douce (Robert Bresson / 1969) // Martha (Rainer Werner Fassbinder / 1974) // Numero Deux (Jean-Luc Godard / 1975) // Biruma No Tategoto/The Burmese Harp (Kon Ichikawa / 19560 // Wavelength (Michael Snow / 1967) // Dodsworth (William Wyler / 1936) // All About Eve (Joseph L. Mankiewicz / 1950) // Genroku Chushingura/The 47 Ronin (Kenji Mizoguchi / 1941) // The General (Clyde Bruckman & Buster Keaton / 1927) // Nuts In May (Mike Leigh / 1976) // Withnail & I (Bruce Robinson / 1987) // Francesco, Guillare di Dio/The Flowers of St. Francis (Roberto Rossellini / 1950) // Over Here (Jon Jost // 2007) // The Ruling Class (Peter Medak / 1972)
OUTSTANDING MEMBER OF THE COMMUNITY AWARD: Keegan. I am proud to call you my friend and just want to say I love you. And I think you're doing a great job. You are doing the best you can for yourself and the people you love and I wanted to say, I appreciate it. Even though things maybe suck right now, you're still out there and trying to make it. I think you rock. You've got talent. You're smart, and you're really good to people. I just think it's time someone stopped and gave you a compliment because you deserve it. Good luck, and just always know that I love you. That I stopped my life for just about one or two minutes to write a message here for you, because I want you to feel good, even if it's just for just a second. Don't stop doing what you're doing. You're on the right track!
THE INTELLIGENCE: The Intelligence released a slew of great singles this year and their latest LP 'Fake Surfers' will be available from In the Red in early 2008. Lars also did a bunch of amazing interviews for TB this year, which you can go back and read here.
LARS FINBERG: Lars sings, plays guitars and other stuff, writes songs for and kind of is The Intellignece. Jeff interviewed him back in Issue #8.
The things I think are KILLER , AMAZING, and AWESOME.
- THE GROWLERS: Recording in Costa Mesa after our engineer had a seizure and we
had to stop for a few days me and Susanna stopped by our favorite bar, The Avalon,
where they were charging 10 or 15 bucks for a DJ in the hottest smallest room
ever. We decided to go to the party next door at some kind of gallery to use
the bathroom and this band happend to be playing. They were amazing, kind of
reminded me of a surfy early Strokes and surfy early Doors.
- OOGA BOOGAS: I have an interview with them in the works so I don't want to
ruin my intro but this was my favorite band I saw on our fall tour and there
were many great ones. I was scared to put the record on when I got home they were
so great! But it lived up!
- CHRISTMAS ISLAND: Probably my favorite new recorded music I heard this year. I
played those songs over and over and over, and was so stoked to meet them and the
shows we just played together - they ruled.
- WOUNDED LION: Again. My favorite dudes in the world too. Recording in LA on a
day off the singer Brad had me and Larry Hardy over to his painting studio.
That was one of the best days this year, having tea and him explaining these
great paintings. Loved seeing them on tour and I love their new recordings.
- LAMPS: Their show on our fall tour was the best I've seen them. Opened with two
new songs that are still clubbing forward and a fantastic Kinks cover. Monty
IM's the best too. Hilarious with all kinds of great music.
- SIC ALPS: Mike sent me their newest, 'US EZ', and I was so excited I put it on the
computer and walked on the beach so I could listen on headphones. So cool to be
so excited about hearing a new record that's from a friend, really lucky these days.
The Intelligence quote blew my mind too. I can't describe it. Just got to spend a
couple days with Matt Hartman too, what a guy. Green tea and Coltrane VHS tapes.
- OHSEES "The Masters Bedroom...": This record made me mad when we first heard it because it was so good.
We played three dates with these guys early in the year and it made us get better
faster than months of practice. They always sound great and they sound great
everywhere. Also, the tag team sets we got to do were so fun. PS: Didn't get
a copy of that 'Peanut Butter Oven' EP which stinks but found that "Kids in Cars"
song on a blog... WOW.
- HOSPITALS "Hairdryer Peace": Another one I really got into taking walks at night in the
summer listening to, Stoney gets a cold one.
- CRYSTAL STILTS: Love the newest record, loved the one before that too, we got to
one of our shows in NYC late and they were on stage and just killing it. The
drumming is really awesome, no cymbals! We really loved this show. Spending the
night before on Blank Dog's birthday on his roof all night was really awesome
too, what a great guy, everyone knows it. Bleep blah. And blank dogs were
really killer the next night! Man!
- DAVE E AND THE COOL MARRIAGE COUNSELORS: This came out this year? Did I see
that somewhere? If so, i'm putting it down. ("Searching Thru Sears" may be my
favorite song this year.)
- BEREN EKINE HUETT: This should have been first.
- TIMES NEW VIKING: With Matt Horseshit doing sound was incredible in Seattle. Best
sounding thing I've ever heard at Neumos.
- All the stuff the A-FRAMES are doing: They have always had such great taste and
turned me on to almost everything good that I like, so it's really cool to see them
just go off into outer space! When Min played me "Blue Wave" without telling me
who it was, it was my favorite thing in a whirlwind of insane Min turn-on jams.
PERVE BIRD: Perve plays guitar in The Intellignece.
- Turkey vs. Czech Republic in the Euro Cup 2008.
- Santana Shreds.
- 'Stuff White People Like' by Christian Lander.
- A Life In The Death Of Joe Meek.
- The Portland Flugtag.
- Nature's Nachos.
- Synecdoche, New York.
- Being totally pumped up nuke-style-Chernobyl for seeing
Ooga Boogas, Tyvek, Explode Into Colors, Christmas Island, Liars,
No Bra, Thee Ohsees, Crack Banchee, Stag Bitten, Partman Parthorse and
Wounded Lion live.
- Tropical Vacation Holiday.
- Situations Parties at Dunes.
- Mad Men.
- Mental Floss and Wired.
- Terry Quantum.
- "Lonely Vaquero's Trip Up North" by
RCougar, "So Bored" by Wavves, "On My
Way" by Sonic Chicken 4, "Hair" by Ganglians
and "I've Had It" by Catatonic
- Spring Europe Tour, Fall United States Tour and Christmas
West Coast Tour
as well as all the amazing people I met, got to know better
and catch up
with along the way.
BEREN: Beren plays drums in The Intellignece.
Here are some of my favorite music-related things from the past year. 2008
was mostly a blur...I tried not to list any shows I also played. I don't
know why, it just seemed like the right thing to do, an exception being the
Hunches and Mayyors show which was also the Eat Skull record release.
Favorite Music of 2008:
- Sex/Vid 'Communal Living' LP and 'Nests' 7"
- The Estranged "Fast Train" b/w "The Masses" 7"
- Rodriguez 'Cold Fact' reissue
- Lil Wayne 'Tha Carter III'
Favorite Shows of 2008:
- The Lamps and Wounded Lion at the Redwood Lodge in LA
- Sex/Vid, Gun Outfit, and Sisters house show in PDX
- Abe Vigoda and Mika Miko in PDX
- Melvins at the Wonderballroom, PDX
- Mayyors and The Hunches in PDX
NIGHT PEOPLE RECORDS: Shawn Reed runs the Night People label which does both tapes and vinyl (including that nice Russian Tsarlag LP) and has releases from FNU Ronnies, Secret Abuse, Kites and more coming up in 2009.
1. Eddy Current Suppression Ring 'Primary Colors' (Goner/Aarght!)
2. Eat Skull 'Sick to Death' (Siltbreeze)
3. Beach House 'Devotion' (Carpark)
4. Sic Alps 'US EZ' (Siltbreeze)
5. Meneguar 'The In Hour' (Woodsist)
6. Naked on the Vague 'Blood Pressure Sessions' (Siltbreeze)
7. Sun Araw 'Beach Head' (Woodsist)
8. Russian Tsarlag/Blue Shift split LP
9. Secret Abuse 'Violent Narcissus' (Not Not Fun)
10. The Pink Noise 'Dream Code' (Sacred Bones)
1. Meth Teeth 'Bus Rides' (Sweet Rot)
2. Dead Luke 'Running Scared' (Sweet Rot)
3. Zola Jesus 'Soeur Sewer' (Sacred Bones)
4. Eddy Current Suppression Ring 'Demon's Demands' (Stained Circles/Iron Lung)
5. Terror Bird 'Shame Is On Your Side' (SLUM)
1. Daily Life 'Best of Relax in Vol. 1'
2. Peaking Lights 'Clearvoiant'
3. Mammal 'Distant Days'
4. The Polyps s/t
5. Absinthe Minds 'Neu Strassen'
COCOCOMA: Bill Roe says: New CoCoComa album coming in 2009!
Some great shows & things in general from 2008:
- Getting to tour Europe in a band with my wife and two great friends and meeting tons of great (and crazy) Europeans…
- Hipshakes at SXSW - Longbranch Inn - out-of-tune, abrasive (sonically & physically), destructive, unbelievably disgusting toilet seat abuse...best show I've seen 'em play.
- Hex Dispensers @ 'The Parlour' at SXSW this year - they even dedicated "Tentacles" to me...
- Dutchess & the Duke: live at Town Hall Pub - no mics, no lights, no stage...
- Gonerfest V - GREAT linup this year...every night (and day) was awesome.
- Recording and hanging out with Jack Oblivian in Memphis. He even gave me an old Oblivians tee shirt as a memento.
- watching my wife get more & more pregnant as the months go by…
some of my top fave albums from 2008:
- Eddy Current Supression Ring 'Primary Colours' (Goner/Aarght!) - far and away the best release of the year - more mature and intense than the first LP.
- King Tuff 'Was Dead' LP (The Colonel) - just buy it.
- Dutchess & the Duke 'She's the Dutchess...' (Hardly Art) - heartbreakingly brilliant. I can't remember the last time I paid that much attention to a band's lyrics.
- Thee Oh Sees 'The Masters Bedroom…' (Tomlab) - this LP flat out SLAYS.
- Ty Segall s/t (Castle Face) - late breaker. Awesome OMB...totally twists & turns in interesting directions.
- Okmoniks 'Party Fever!' (Slovenly) - gets no love in the shadow of the Nobunny LP - but personally I think this is better.
- Turpentine Brothers s/t (Alien Snatch) - it almost doesn't even sound like the same band from the first LP. Great shit and totally underrated.
- The Pets 'Misdirection' (Static Impulse) - why does no one talk about this band? Great songs - pop hooks abound!
- Cheap Time s/t (In the Red) - love it or hate it - I listened to this a whole helluva lot this year.
- The Black & Whites s/t (Douchemaster) - Talbot & Co. knock it outta the park after an underwhelming third single. Sounds like the Ramones, Cheap Trick, Flamin Groovies, and KISS - sometimes in the span of one song.
- Ooga Boogas 'Romance & Adventure' (aarght!)- the Aussie takeover continues!
GONER RECORDS: Eric O!!!
- Human Eye "Rare Little Creature"
- The Economist obituaries
- Rediscovering stock of The Squids 45 and Dog Police LP
- Surviving Gonerfest V
- Paul Drummond Eye Mind: The Saga of Roky Erickson and the 13th Floor Elevators, The Pioneers of Psychedelic Sound
- Ooga Boogas and Eddy Current Suppression Ring.
- Shogo, World's Smallest Great Dane
- Taco Poke
- Karl Rove "editorials" in the Wall Street Journal during the Presidential campaign
- Golden Boys, especially when Nathan is tromboning.
SKULLTONES: Ry runs the Skulltones label (Black Pus and Kurt Vile 7"es upcoming) and plays in Snake Apartment.
- The Alps 'III' LP
- Pumice 'Quo' LP
- Zomes'Zomes' LP
- Sic Alps 'U.S. EZ' LP
- Portishead 'Third' 2LP
- Emeralds 'Solar Bridge' CD
- Flying Lotus 'Los Angeles' 2LP
- Breeders 'Mountain Battles' LP
- Raveonettes 'Lust Lust Lust' LP
- Kurt Vile 'Constant Hitmaker' CD
- Pantaleimon 'Heart of the Sun' CD
- Guns 'n' Roses 'Chinese Democracy' CD
- Eddy Current Suppression Ring 'Primary Colours' LP
- Eleanoora Rosenholm 'Älä Kysy Kuolleilta, He Sanoivat' LP
- Natural Snow Buildings/Isengrind/Twinsistermoon- The Snowbringer Cult 2CD
- Alter Ego "Gary" 12"
- Mayyors "Metro/Fatigure" 7"
- Ricardo Villalbos "Enfants" 12"
- White Magic "New Egypt" CDEP
- The Anals "Commando of Love" 7"
- Comet Gain "Love Without Lies" 7"
- Shackleton "Death is Not Final" 12"
- Martyn "All I Have is Memories" 12"
- Digital Leather "Sorcerer" LP (side A)
- Ignivomous "Eroded Void of Sanity" 7"
- Private Entertainment "Four Tracks" 7"
- XYX "Sistema de Terminacion Sexual" 7"
- Them, Themselves or They "Ribbons & Bows....Angel Dust & Magick Wands" 7"
- Red Favorite s/t LP
- The Clean 'Compilation' LP (Little Axe)
- SPK 'Document III0' Boxset (Vinyl on Demand)
- Bullwackies 'Black World' LP
- Yoshi Wada 'Off the Wall' CD
- V/A 'African Scream Contest' 2LP
- Wicked Witch 'Chaos: 1978-1986' LP
- Karen Dalton 'Green Rocky Road' CD
- Comet Gain 'Broken Record Prayers' CD
- Jean-Pierre Massiera 'Psychoses Discoid' LP
- Mystifier 'Baphometic Goat Worship' 5LP Boxset (Nuclear War Now)
NOBUNNY: JUSTIN TYPED IN ALL CAPS SO I LEFT IT THAT WAY! EVERYONE LOVES NOBUNNY!
I PLAYED 111 SHOWS IN 2008. THEY WERE ALL FUN, EVEN WHEN THEY WEREN'T. HERE ARE 11 LOWLIGHTS.
11. EL PASO, TX @ BURNSIDE HOUSE - 12/15/08
I DON'T REMEMBER A SINGLE THING ABOUT THIS SHOW. APPARENTLY WE WERE BAD AND NO ONE WATCHED. BAND MATES HATED IT AND HAD TO PULL ME AWAY FROM A GUY WHO WAS GONNA STAB ME. PUNK!
10. OAKLAND, CA @ GHOST TOWN GALLERY "DIAMOND DAYS" - 7/18/08
GO TO THE DICTIONARY AND LOOK UP "CLUSTERFUCK". NOT IN THERE? WELL, IT'S A REAL WORD AND ONE THAT PERFECTLY SUMS UP THIS NIGHT. 12 BANDS OR SO ARE SUPPOSED TO PLAY THIS NIGHT. EVERYTHING FROM INDIE JAZZ, TO PROTO HYPHY BANDS. 99% GARBAGE! THAT'S NOT THE PROBLEM THOUGH. THE PROBLEM IS THAT NO ONE WAS RUNNING THE SHOW, AND THE (AWFUL) BANDS WERE LEFT TO DO EVERYTHING THEMSELVES... INCLUDING "JAM" AND PLAY 5345215375265 SONG SETS (ATTN BANDS: NO ONE WANTS TO HEAR YOU FOR MORE THAN A HALF HOUR.... EVER!). WE SPLIT OUR SET WITH THEE MAKEOUT PARTY (HOMIES POR VIDA) AT APPROX. 4:30 AM! AWFUL. VERY FEW PEOPLE ARE LEFT. THE PROMOTER HIMSELF HAD LEFT HOURS AGO. WHAT WAS ONCE A PACKED SHOW AT $8 A HEAD YIELDED $40 FOR THEE MAKEOUT PARTY AND $0 FOR MYSELF. BY THE TIME WE PLAYED I HAD CONSUMED ENOUGH WHISKEY TO FILL A BATH TUB. WOKE UP THE NEXT DAY WITH A HANGOVER HAND DELIVERED FROM SATAN HIMSELF, AND A WICKED SET OF LEPER LEGS. NICE!
9. ARCATA, CA @ GREEN HOUSE - 5/21/08
THE PERSON I HAD BEEN TALKING TO STOPPED RETURNING EMAILS 2-3 WEEKS BEFORE THE SHOW. WE NEVER GOT A FINAL CONFORMATION OR EVEN AN ADDRESS. WE (NOBUNNY & SO COW) DECIDED TO GO TO ARCATA ANYWAY AND FIND THIS PLACE. AFTER A QUICK STOP AT A GAS STATION AND A PIZZA PLACE WE WERE DIRECTED TO THE THE GREEN HOUSE. SO COW AND I WALK UP TO WITNESS THROUGH THE WINDOW WHAT SO COW REFERED TO AS AN "INDIE WAKE". ONE DUDE WITH AN ACOUSTIC GUITAR PLAYING TO ABOUT SIX PEOPLE ALL SITTING ON COUCHES IN THE LIVING ROOM. WE FINALLY GO IN AND NOBODY KNOWS WHO WE ARE OR THAT WE WERE PLAYING.
8. SAN FRANCISCO, CA @ KIMOS - 7/13/08
I BROUGHT IN ONE PERSON (THANKS FOR THE BEER DAVE!). THE OTHER TWO BANDS BROUGHT 3 (THEIR GIRLFRIENDS). I PLAYED TO NO ONE. I GOT PAID NOTHING. I LOST $6.65 TAKING BART TO THE SHOW. THAT'S A LOT TO A BUM LIKE ME. CRASHED HARD ON MY SKATEBOARD TRYING TO CATCH THE STUPID TRAIN. RAD!
7. LAWRENCE, KS @ 8TH ST PUB - 6/26/08
FIRST SHOW OF TOUR! I'M PLAYING WITH A BACKING CD. DIDN'T BOTHER TO CHECK TO SEE IF THE CD WORKED. IT DIDN'T. IT SKIPPED EVERY SINGLE SONG. I DID NOT BRING A BACK UP. PARTY!
6. HOBOKEN, NJ @ PRIVATE PARTY - 12/5/08
I WAS SICK AND SOBER. DRUMMER WAS TOO DRUNK TO PLAY...NOT THAT IT MATTERED, BECAUSE THE DRUMS WERE BROKEN/FALLING APART... NOT THAT IT MATTERED BECAUSE PEOPLE WERE KNOCKING THEM OVER EVERY SONG ANYHOW. YOU FOOLS WILL DANCE TO ANYTHING. JEEZ. WE SUCKED. SUCKERS!
5. SAN FRANCISCO, CA @ THE STUD - 7/24/08
THIS WAS A BENEFIT SHOW FOR OUR FRIENDS THE SHUDDERS WHO WERE LEAVING FOR TOUR THAT WEEK. JASON AND I PAY THE $4 BRIDGE TOLL (PLUS GAS) AND MAKE OUR WAY TO THE STUD. WE ARE THE FIRST ONES THERE. AN HOUR OR SO LATER PEOPLE START SHOWING UP INCLUDING TWO OF THE THREE SHUDDERS. WE'VE BEEN INFORMED THAT THE OTHER SHUDDER (LEAD SINGER/BASS) WON'T BE COMING 'CUZ THEY GOT IN AN ARGUMENT AND CAN WE PLAY FOR AN HOUR? WE'LL CERTAINLY TRY. RIGHT BEFORE WE ARE ABOUT TO GO ON, I ASK FOR SOME BEERS FOR THE BAND (A TWO PIECE) AND AM HANDED ONE DRINK TICKET. I EXPLAIN TO THE GUY THAT WE ARE A TWO PIECE. NO DICE. I TELL HIM WE ARE PLAYING FOR AN HOUR FOR FREE. NO DICE, ASK THE DOOR. I ASK THE DOOR, "THIS IS A BENEFIT..." I TELL HER I KNOW THAT, BUT THAT WE ARE BROKE AND THIRSTY AND DESERVE AT THE OH-SO VERY LEAST, A BEER APIECE. FINALLY NIKI (SHUDDERS) BUYS US A BEER (THANK YOU!). WE HALF ASS IT THROUGH A SOBER ROCKABILLY SET MIXED IN WITH OUR ORIGINALS THEN WENT OUT TO THE VAN AND SMOKED A JIB. UPON RETURNING TO THE BAR AN OLD FRIEND OF MINE (WHOM I'D BEEN LAUGHING AND DANCING WITH EARLIER) INFORMED ME (LOUDLY AND REPEATEDLY) THAT I WAS A ROCK STAR PIECE OF SHIT BITCH WHO SUCKED AND THAT HE REMEMBERED ME FROM GRAND RAPIDS (PASSED THRU ONCE). I BROKE DOWN SOBBING AND SCREAMING (WHY ARE YOU SAYING THIS TO ME?!?!) IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BAR STONED OUT OF MY SKULL WHILE HE SCREAMED AT ME. AWESOME!
4. LOS ANGELES, CA @ HOUSE SHOW(S) - 08/12/08
THE FIRST HOUSE WE SHOW UP AT TO PLAY GETS SHUT DOWN BY THE COPS DURING THE FIRST OF SIX BANDS. SHOW GETS MOVED WAAAY THE FUCK OUT IN THE 'BURBS. THE SHOW IS AT A HOUSE THAT SOME KID STOLE THE KEYS FOR FROM HIS DAD, A REAL ESTATE GUY. AT FIRST WE ARE TOLD THAT WE CAN'T GO IN 'CUZ HE DOESN'T WANNA DIRTY THE CARPETS. AFTER ENOUGH PEOPLE SHOW UP, DUDE LETS PEOPLE IN, AND ANNOUNCES LIKE TEN BANDS THAT ARE GONNA PLAY, NONE OF WHICH ARE NOBUNNY OR THE WAX MUSEUMS (WHO I WAS ON TOUR WITH). WE TRY TO EXPLAIN THAT WE CAME FROM OUTTA TOWN AND WOULD LIKE TO PLAY (OH YEAH, I FORGOT TO MENTION THAT EVERYONE FROM THE PREVIOUS PARTY MUST HAVE BEEN POUNDING BOOZE THE WHOLE RIDE TO THE NEW HOUSE, 'CUZ EVERYBODY WAS FUCKING WASTED ALL OF THE SUDDEN). WE FINALLY HAVE OUR BUDS LE FACE STEP UP AND GET US GOING. WAX MUSEUMS GO FIRST. RIGHT BEFORE THEY START, SOMEONE MAKES AN ANNOUCEMENT TO NOT BREAK THE "REALLY EXPENSIVE" CHANDELIER (THE ONLY FURNITURE IN THERE BESIDES A WHITE COUCH AND WHITE CARPETING). WITHIN SECONDS THE PLACE ERUPTS INTO CHAOS, COUCH IS TORE UP, PARTY IS RAGING, CUSHIONS ARE BEING THROWN AT THE BAND AND THE CHANDELIER. WAX MUSEUMS PLAY A WHOPPING THREE SONG SET. NOBUNNY IS UP. WE WERE ALSO GOING TO PLAY THREE SONGS. DURING THE FIRST SONG PAYTON (GUITAR) IS KNOCKED FLAT ON HIS ASS WHILE PLAYING. SONG ENDS AND A DUDE GETS RIGHT IN MY FACE "HOW MANY MORE YOU GOT?" TWO I TELL HIM. "YOU HAVE ONE." TWO, I TELL HIM AGAIN. HE STEPS EVEN CLOSER SOMEHOW AND TELLS ME, AGAIN, "YOU HAVE ONE!". COOL, DUDE! THANKS!!! WE PLAY OUR ONE MORE. 3-4 OTHER BANDS PLAY FULL SETS. THE COPS FINALLY ARRIVE AND HOMEBOY IS FREAKING OUT AND NOT LETTING ANYONE LEAVE. WE TELL HIM WE ARE GOING, TO WHICH THIS GENIUS RESPONDS... "IF YOU ARE GONNA LEAVE THEN JUST MAKE SURE YOU LEAVE!" IF WE ARE GONNA LEAVE, MAKE SURE WE LEAVE?!?! YOU GOT IT PAL!
3. SAN FRANCISCO, CA @ KNOCKOUT "STINKO DE MAYO" 05/04/08
MY RECORD RELEASE SHOW! THERE WERE A BUNCH OF BANDS AND I WAS DOING THE KAREOKE STYLE SHOW AND GOING ON LAST. THIS WAS A REAL FUN SHOW UNTIL RIGHT BEFORE I HAD TO GO ON, I REALIZED I LEFT MY MUSIC CD AT HOME. I DID JUST ABOUT THE MOST PATHETIC THING EVER AND JUST SANG ALONG TO MY NEW LP. THAT'S RIGHT. RECORD PLAYED AND I SANG ALONG. THEN I BROKE THE CEILING WHILE EXPOSING MY BAT BALLS. FUCK.
2. SAN FRANCISCO, CA @ KNOCKOUT 09/03/08
ONCE AGAIN I MANAGED TO STINK UP THE BEST BAR IN SF AND DELIVER THEM A PILE OF SHIT. THIS ONE WAS NOT COMPLETELY MY FAULT, BUT THERE REALLY IS NO EXCUSING WHAT HAPPENED UP THERE. NO MASK? NO SLEEP? NO PROBLEM. I TORE A PAPER PLATE IN HALF FOR BUNNY EARS AND WRAPPED MY HEAD IN TIN FOIL. NO SLEEP? NO PROBLEM. JUST GET REALLY REALLY REALLY DRUNK. POWER GOES OUT RIGHT BEFORE YOUR ABOUT TO GO ON? NO PROBLEM. GO UP THERE AND TRY TO SCREAM SONGS YOU DON'T KNOW ACAPELLA. A REAL EMBARRASSMENT. REALLY. NOTHING CUTE OR FUNNY ABOUT IT. PATHETIC.
1. SAN JOSE, CA @ PRIVATE PARTY - 7/26/08
THIS WAS AN ENGAGEMENT PARTY FOR GAVIN AND LAUREN FROM THE RANTOULS. IT WAS A PRETTY SNAZZY SHINDIG WITH ALL SORTS OF FOOD, FOOLS, AND FAMILY. FREE BOOZE? DID SOMEBODY SAY FREE BOOZE?!?! FUCK. FOR SOME REASON I THOUGHT IT'D BE COOL TO PULL OUT ONE OF MY OLD BACKING TAPES WITH JUST BLOWN OUT BASS AND DRUMS. I ALSO THOUGHT IT'D BE COOL TO GO PANTSLESS IN A PIZZA COSTUME EVEN THOUGH I WAS COVERED IN FRESH SKATING SCABS AND SCARS. MUSIC TOO QUIET? JUST SCREAM REAL LOUD...THAT'LL HELP. FUCK. I SOMETIMES FORGET MY OWN PUNKNESS. I ONLY GOT ABOUT THREE SONGS IN BEFORE THE POWER "MYSTERIOUSLY" WENT OUT. FUCK IT, I'LL JUST JUMP INTO THE POOL. DID I MENTION I WAS BLEEDING? AS YOU CAN SEE FROM THE PHOTO BELOW, I WAS A HIT WITH THE FATHER OF THE BRIDE!
THE SUSPICIONS: these kids knocked our socks off way back in 2006, so much so we even interviewed 'em. And congrats to proud parents Karen and Bryan!
AWESOME IN 2008 (In no particular order):
- Getting a new Ian in our band
- Karen and Bryan had an awesome baby girl
- Ian got married
- Nick finally got some NEW DRUMS
- “It’s All Lies” by the Romance Novels
- Nobunny “Love Visions”
- “Black Daddy” on Chocolate News
- Nick finally got some pussy – a new pet cat named Clyde!!
- Ian’s new wife’s dog ran across Karen and Bryan’s baby’s face and we still let him in the band
- Nick’s dog accidentally experienced a new level of consciousness through some special cookies
- SHOTGUN HEARD AROUND THE WORLD
- Xbox live
- Partying with the Dead Ghosts in the Magical Basement
- Ninja Warrior and Unbeatable Banzuke on G4
- Ruben and Lacey’s wedding
- Playing at the Hellmouth party shack
- Horseback riding in Mexico
- Being a stay at home dad
- 50-dude plus 4 chicks party bus to Iron Maiden
- Packers reject Favre
- Playing shows with your guitar on sideways when you’re 8 months pregnant
- Early Man – best metal band 2008 / “Sinking the Blade” – best metal song 2008
- 30 Rock
- Hot wings are still a timeless classic, “Always hot, sometimes wings”
- “National Tampoon’s Menstrual Vacation”
THE FEELING OF LOVE: The Feeling of Love from Metz, France managed to tour the States this year and spread cheer throughout the nation. It was great to finally meet G, Seb and crew and their road manager Kemp Boyd!
New stuffs, old shits (bands, records, places, food), discovered or rediscovered, loved or hated in 2008.
- The Anals "Commando of Love" 7" (Sweet Rot)
- Movie Star Junkies "Melville" LP (Voodoo Rhythm) - Best Italian rock band!
- Bamalama Fest in Huntsville
- Thee Oh Sees "The Masters Bedroom Is Worth Spending A Night In" LP (Tomlab)
- The Hospitals "Hairdryer Peace' LP (Hospitals)
- Triple Whopper
- Judah Bauer enigmatic diva jokes
- Boo Berry Fort (Tempe, AZ)
- Chrismas Island and Jacuzzi Boys singles
- Velvet Club in Torino, Italy - Great place to play and smoke.
- "A Promise Is A Promise to a Person of The World…Yours, Chicksaw" (first 7" on Bang!Bang Records)
- And this guy, Kurt René from Switzerland. Go play in Roorschach and sleep at his place.
- "Lemon Incest" by Serge Gainsbourg. Not from 2008 (actualy from 1984), but last year was the first time I listen to that song in seven years. Strange and beautiful love song from a man to his daughter. Between Chopin and D.A.F.
HAUNTED GEORGE: TB has been a huge fan of HG's work from The Beguiled to The Necessary Evils to his current solo work. Our old bud Lastname even interviewed him way back when. He has a new LP coming on In the Red in 2009, look out!
Things I got in 2008 that made life more enjoyable:
1. The Book of the Damned: The Collected Works of Charles Fort
Includes Four Complete Volumes: The Book of the Damned, New Lands, Lo!, and
Wild Talents. If the idea of someone like Art Bell being around in the 1920s sounds
interesting to you then you might want to get this 1125 pages of "anomalous
Jeremy P. Tarcher / Penguin // www.penguin.com
2. Creepy Archives - Volume One
Dark Horse reissues the first five issues of Creepy Magazine (horror comics)
cover-to-cover... meaning the ads, the letters to the editor and full color
covers! James Warren published these first issues of Creepy Magazine in 1964 and '65
featuring artwork from Joe Orlando, Alex Toth, Wally Wood, and Frank Frazetta.
The Jack Davis cover on issue #1 is an American masterpiece!
Dark Horse Books // www.darkhorse.com
3. The House of Secrets - Volume One
More horror comics...this time from DC Comics. This includes reprints of issues
#81-98. Many of the same people involved in Creepy Magazine like Alex Toth,
Wally Wood, and writer Marv Wolfman were working on House of Secrets when it
came out between 1969 and 1972. Most issues featured "Abel's Fables", Sergio
Aragones' single-page of dialogue-free dark/sick humor.
DC Comics // www.dccomics.com
4. Medieval French Spiked-Club
I got this really evil looking thing in France while on tour with the Lamps this
past summer. It looks like a baseball bat with spikes coming out of it in every
direction. It's a fully-functional replica of medieval French weapon. I really
didn't think I would make it through customs with it coming back home. Whenever
anyone of us had to sleep in the van on the tour the club was kept in reach.
5. The Tarot De Marseille restored by Alexandre Jodorowsky & Philille Camoin
I found this in an esoteric book store in Turin, Italy. I have no idea if this
was printed in 2008 but that's when I got it so it qualifies for this list. This
is the french tarot deck that dates back to the 1700's. Alejandro ("El Topo")
Jodorowsky had a hand in the restoration of this deck. There is a bar in Paris
where you can get a reading from Jodorowsky... or so I have been told.
6. Thee Cormans - "The 02-02-08 Santa Fe Springs Sessions"
I recorded Thee Cormans live on a 2-track at Nick's warehouse in Santa Fe
Springs on a Saturday afternoon. I showed up late around 3 o'clock. I had told
them I was going to be there at noon or something. By the time I had set up all
the mics and got levels and such it was probably close to 3:30 at the earliest.
By 6:30 we had recorded 17 tracks! Leon Catfish from The Guilty Hearts had just
joined them on bass at that time. I thought everything came out great. The band
wasn't as excited as I was so it's still unreleased.
7. Movie Star Junkies - "Melville" LP/CD
Stefano, the vocalist for the Movie Star Junkies, was the driver for the
Lamps/Haunted George European Tour. He picked us up at the airport in Amsterdam
and I only knew him as the drummer for A.H.Kraken. As time went by Stefano told
us about the Movie Star Junkies. I got a Movie Star Junkies' CD from Stefano
called "Melville". This was a CD-R with homemade artwork and not on anyone's
label. We listened to it many times and said, "Man, In the Red or Hook or Crook
NEEDS to put this record out!" Voodoo Rhythm smartly snatched it up and gave it
an official release before anyone else. They have a "Mother's Little
Helper"/Gypsy kind of swirling and pounding sound that is uniquely European.
Voodoo Rhythm // www.voodoorhythm.com
8. James Arthur - "Cuervo Muerte"
I started shooting a horror/western on mini-DV late in 2007. Everything is on
hold because right when I got close to being done I lost access to the place I
was doing my editing at. While I was working on it I had talked to James Arthur
on the phone and he mentioned to me that he had been experimenting with
"abstract and soundtrack kind of music" at his sound lab in Texas. I asked him
if he wouldn't mind coming up with something that was both Western and Horror
that I could use for my movie. I received in the mail a CD-R with the words
"Cuervo Muerte" written in red marker across the disc. It's an evil/creepy mix
of scratchy old 78s played at the wrong speed, crows, tom-toms, and bass
feedback. There are a bunch of different tracks. Parts of it sound like the
opening credit sequence from the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre and parts
sound like Ennio Morricone on peyote buttons. This is unreleased too.
PINK REASON: I don't think Kevin really needs an introduction. He is the brain behind Pink Reason and is DIY as fuck.
TOP SHIT OF 2008
Crimson Wave - Circuit Des Yeux's 'Symphone'LP on De Stijl was an absolute
favorite of creepy lo-fi witch punk. Played it for Psychedelic
Horseshit and Fabulous Diamonds while we were all tripping and it
scared everyone. Zola Jesus' 7"s had some outstanding tracks and have
become quite a force live. Her track on the 'XXperiments' compilation is
one of the best songs to come out this year. Cro Magnon have done a
complete 180 and morphed from a shitty Harry Pussy rip into a really
strange and primitve punk band with actual songs.
Yuppies - These kids from Omaha hooked us up with a demo when we
rolled through town once and it ended up getting played in the car for
the rest of that tour. It took a few listens to make it through all
the static and noise but once I broke through I found some really
great pop songs. Since then they've gotten some better recordings
which will hopefully find their way to vinyl soon. One of the more
exciting live bands of '08 for sure.
Miami - A very sexy city filled with tons of really fun and creative
people with great taste in music. The city is home to obvious greats
like the Electric Bunnies and the Jacuzzi Boys but it's only a matter
of time before the twisted pop and psychedelia of projects like This
Heart Electric, Tee Pee, Melted Sunglasses, Ha Ha Help and Dino Felipe
make their way in through the ears of Termbros the world over.
Twin Stumps/Drunkdriver - New York is the safest city in the US, but
seeing these guys live makes you momentarily forget that.
Work - It sucks, but I'm pretty lucky to have found jobs where I can
work with cool people who have become friends and get paid enough to
have my own bedroom for the first time in a few years, buy myself a
new guitar and recording gear and most imporantly take my girlfriend
out to eat regularly. Plus I get to drink for free now.
A-FRAMES: The A-Frames are some of the nicest people on the planet. They have a triple LP or singles and rarities coming out on S-S in 2009 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 got a short list this year, just because I want to list only releases that would likely not be repeated dozens of times. In looking at last year's best of, it was clear that many of us thought highly of the same records. So while I acknowledge the greatness of LPs by Hank IV, Nothing People, etc., like the rest of the contributors, here's a handful of worthy records that might not be on too many other lists:
V/A 'Victrola Favorites' 2XCD (Fire Breathing Turtle)
This is a book plus two CDs which document rare 78s from all over the world. The book is a beautifully presented look at the record covers, labels, flyers, and other ephemera. Most of the artists on the CDs I've never heard of, me not being immersed in oldies culture. But I'm glad these guys are doing the heavy lifting for us. They get to spend a lot of time and money tracking this stuff down (because they like to do that) and then we get to purchase, in easy to see/hear media, the fruit of all their years of work. That's what I call value!
More on VF here.
V/A 'Bollywood Steel Guitar' CD (Sublime Frequencies)
I never get tired of listening to this one. SF has such a great track record documenting the underbelly of the world's music that it's pretty easy to put anything of theirs in a given year into a best-of list.
Christmas Island/Le Jonathan Reilly split 7" (FDH/Shit In Can Records)
Thanks to Lars for playing me this. Both sides are full of catchy pop melodies and hooky songs by bands with personality. Sounds simple, but we all know that's really tough to pull off. It's hard to know how to file this split, since usually you do it by the side that's better, and splits never have two great sides - except this one of course.
Dave E. & The Cool Marriage Counselors 7" (Christmas Pets)
Any new release Electric Eels related, and in particular Dave E related, is likely to generate heavy breathing and sweaty palms before you even hear it. And considering the towering, godlike status of the Eels, this one had a huge potential letdown factor. But it delivers the magickal Daveness that helps makes the Eels the demented genius they are. I just wish this was more widely available, since if you didn't get it the week it came out, odds are good you won't ever get it.
V/A 'Obsession: Rare Psych' LP (Bully Records)
Super heavy and raw psych hard rock as only could be made in the 70's. I think most of these bands are South American. This record puts me in a good mood.
Wet Dog 'Enterprise Reversal' LP/CD (Angular Recording Corporation)
Ok, so technically I haven't heard this album yet, but I still know it's one of the years' best. I've heard a lot of the songs on it, via Myspace and Soulseek. In fact, it was while chatting up a London-based soulseeker about Cravats a few years ago that he/she informed me of Wetdog. As it turned out, not only had I unwittingly already met one member of the band, I really loved these songs. And I was envious of some of the basslines -- as in: why didn't I think of that?
RYAN WELLS, ESQ.: Also known to some as Denkinger, RW is Z-Gun co-honcho and Bay Area man-about-town.
- LiveFastDie 'Shit Amplified' LP/'Buzz Buzz Buzzard' 7" (Dusty Medical/Goodbye Boozy)
"Here's 10 records that I know are still getting their rotations weeks or months after the fact, that's why they are visible from where I'm splayed in front of the computer. Plays = stone winners."
- Gary War 'New Ratheonport' LP (Shdwply)
- Thee Oh Sees 'The Master's Bedroom Is Worth Spending a Night In' (Tomlab)
- Los Llamarada 'Takes the Sky' LP (S-S)
- PJ Bonneman 'Jeg Kendte Dem Ikke' EP (Spildafvinyl)
- Homosexuals 'Love Guns' 10" ( )
- Druid Perfume s/t LP (Pigs)
- Eddy Current Supression Ring 'Primary Colours' LP (Goner/Aarght)
- Sic Alps 'US EZ' LP (Siltbreeze)
- Bad Thoughts 'Non Violence' 7" (M'lady)
SCOTT SORIANO: Scott is Ryan's boss over at Z-Gun and a TB alum in good standing. He also makes a killer salad.
Ten for Oh Eight
Too many damn things cruise by me in a year for me to play Mister Comprehensive and, as I’ve stated in other year end rundowns, two months from now, I might look back at this and think “Wrong, wrong, right, ummm maybe”. I’m also going to avoid giving you a straight up list that makes any thematic sense other than here are ten musically notable things about 2008, in no order of preference.
Australia: Finally, the Aussie underground flowered after a decade (longer?) of dormancy. For the last ten years or longer, every attempt by me to ferret out some Oz goodness via native correspondents has come to naught. But in 2008, along with some more stellar shit from Eddy Current Suppression Ring, came primo releases by Total Control, Fabulous Diamonds, The Stabs, Naked on the Vague, Unborn Unicorn, and UV Race, along with interesting bullshit by XNOBBQX. And that’s just the surface.
The Hospitals 'Hairdryer Peace' LP: Easily the best album of the year, in a year with very strong full lengths. I don’t think it is an exaggeration to state that Stonehouse took p. rock to a previously unknown level of sonic fucked-upness. Or if psychedelic is really about blowing out one’s mind and not tired aping of Sixties conventions, this is the future of psych.
"The Brothers Unconnected, A Tribute to Charles Gocher and Sun City Girls": Certainly a sad note that this tremendous show (and CD) by Alan and Richard Bishop marks the death of co-conspirator Charles Gocher and, I assume, their band the Sun City Girls. If one is going to do a tribute to a fallen friend this is the way to do it – no schmaltz or sentimentality, no blabbering on and on about the man’s importance and contribution to music and humanity, just a short film of his works and two excellent dudes playing his (and their music). I saw the Bishops play in a quonset hut on the grounds of an experimental art colony, among a bunch of music freaks and it was fantastic. Snatched a CD of the brothers and its been on rotation since.
Henry Flynt: Musical misfit from the Sixties and Seventies who hung out with the Fluxus crowd, jammed with the Velvet Underground, and made a lot of recordings – sounds that didn’t start getting released until a few years ago. While I’ve heard the name referenced, I didn’t get a listen until my friend the Flower Vato spun a track from the I don’t wanna LP on our radio show. Scissored the sounds in my brain, that song did. Paid good money for the album and played it a hundred times. While nothing else I’ve heard by Flynt hits me as hard, I am a fan, picking up whatever gets dribbled out.
Obama songs: Forget “Obama Girl”, there were a lot better (and shittier) Obama songs made in 2008. You don’t even have had to vote for the guy to enjoy the onslaught on “real people” music that were thrust into the world during the election. And because the Supreme Leader is also a cultural icon, we are sure to get more. Youtube is the place to go to find this stuff. Some favorites of mine are Amigos de Obama’s “Viva Obama 2008,” TI$A’s “Vote Obama”, “Obama is Beautiful World” by an enthusiastic Japanese band, and “Bootsie’s Obama Song” by an unnamed Black woman. Or, if you are willing to sift through a lot of shitty rap songs, peppy college students trying to be funny, and very very very earnest singer-songwriters, you will find some gems. And the good thing is that there is much much much more to come.
The internet build ‘em up & shoot ‘em down: The UK music press is famous for hyping artists one week only to shit on them the next and the internet has now internationalized this idiocy. And, yes, Termbo is not immune. Related are the folks, just waiting to slam any band that they perceived as hyped. It is all pretty damn ridiculous and more about the writer trying to gain cred (among who?) as a tastemaker or tastebreaker. While it is all pretty meaningless and somewhat annoying, there is a plus side: If you buy the latest mediocre fad band thanks to hype, you just need to wait til the record sells out and you can flip the piece of crap for good money.
Die Stasi, Sacred Bones, & Sweet Rot: Three young labels that put out some great shit in ’08. Die Stasi is just seven records old but put out a few stellar sevens and pulled off a flawless comp, while carving out an aesthetic niche for itself...No one beats Sacred Bones for their packaging. The screened sleeves are always nice and the limited editions are drop dead. But that wouldn’t mean shit if the music inside wasn’t any good. And it is. Check out the Children’s Hospital album and go backwards...Vancouver’s Sweet Rot Records has restricted itself to seven inches, which is a fine way to go, especially when they put out nuggets like AH Kraken, The Anals, Dead Luke, and Love Tan.
Old stuff that I listened to a hell of a lot of: Morricone, Jethro Tull, Fairuz, Thin Lizzy, Barbara, The Peanuts, Nick Drake...
New stuff that got plenty of spins: Thomas Function’s “Celebration”, Burnt Hills’ “Tonight We Ride”, Homosexuals’ “Love Gun?”, Dan Melchior und Das Menace’s “Christmas for Crows", AFCGT s/t, Little Women’s “Teeth”, Spider Trio’s “Rendezvous”, Druid Perfume, Magic Lantern’s “High Beams”...
THE YOLKS: Chicago's coolest band released both a killer single and a killer tape this year. They've recorded their debut LP, which will be unleashed on the public in 2009.
The list below was basically determined by The Yolks as a whole. The blurbs were added by Nathan, wherever he felt he might have something to say that other people haven't already.
1. Dutchess and the Duke "She's The...." (Hardly Art)
2. Nobunny "Love Visions" (Bubbledumb/1234Go!)
3. King Tuff "Was Dead" (Colonel)- Holy shit, did this ever come out of left field! The songwriting on this album is so fucking good. "I got the telephone in my eyes / I got your phone number memorized / c-c-c-c-connection." Really, dude? Did you really just blow my mind that easily? And there's like a billion other brilliant little turns of phrase and great ideas for songs on this record that just make it awesome. This record is like a ninth inning grand slam to seal the deal on what was an awesome year in rock 'n' roll.
4. Okmoniks "Party Fever" (Slovenly) - The Okmoniks were really my first my love once I started listening to current music again. The Yolks had just started, I had just figured out what Myspace was, and I stumbled across The Okmoniks page and my mind was blown. I was like, here is a band that is basically making the kind of music I want to be making, and they have been doing it since 2002! Everytime I put on this record it's like I forgot how awesome it was and I fall in love all over again. So good!
5. Cheap Time s/t (In the Red)
6. Thee Makeout Party "Play Pretend" (Recess) - Last winter I went back to San Francisco to visit some friends, and I ended up seeing Thee Makeout Party twice. My first impression was that they were good, but waaaaaaay too wussy for my taste. Way too poppy, way too sugary, way way way too sweet. But slowly but surely they grew on me, and at this time I'm totally hooked. Really well crafted songs about the pains of growing up, falling in love, innocence lost, and trying to stay true to yourself through it all. Y'know, the kind of stuff that would really speak to me if I was a nineteen year old girl. But as a 28 year old man, the fact that I dig this record this much basically makes me feel like, for lack of a better term, a totally pussy. So I mostly enjoy it alone so that my manhood is never questioned. Seriously though, this is a great record.
7.Wax Museums s/t (Douchemaster)
8. The Ohsees "The Master's Bedroom..." (Tomlab)
9. Traditional Fools s/t (Make A Mess) - If you want to really understand how awesome this band is check out their video for "Street Surfin'".
10.Vivian Girls s/t (Mauled By Tigers/In the Red) - Say what you will, but if you tell me you don't cream your jeans when they hit the high harmony in "Where You Run To" I won't believe you. You want a formula for success? Reverb + girls singing in harmony + reverb + more fucking reverb! It was that easy all along. You're just mad cause you didn't think of it first.
7"s: (almost all of these 7"s are on par with each other, so the ranking is pretty haphazard...)
1. Eric and the Happy Thoughts (Bubbledumb) - I don't even have this record yet but I know it's #1. Eric's got the gift, and he continues to write some of the greatest garage pop tunes out there.
2. Hunx and His Punx (Rob's House/Bachelor)
3.Real Numbers (Three Dimensional) - I have a feeling this might be one of the only times you see this 7" in the best of 2008 list, but I really hope I'm wrong cause "Radio World" is one of the best songs of the year. We were DJing at a roof party in Chicago and my brother put it on right after "Beat Your Heart Out" by The Zeros and the transition was seamless. I think that says alot, somehow.
4. Snake Flower 2 (Tic Tac Totally)
5. Dead Ghosts (MilknHerpes/Boom Chick)
6.Boys Club (Douchemaster/Bachelor)
7. Fault Lines (Don't Cry Joe) - I asked these guys if they wanted to stop by my spot and smoke some weed after they played in Chicago. They reacted like they had been in the desert for weeks and I was offering them water. Once they explained that yes, they did cover "Gonna Sit Right Down" because of Thee Milkshakes, it made complete sense why I would dig this band. The whole record has a great reverb-y, lo fi sound to go with their great songs. This is another record where I am pleasantly suprised by how good it is everytime I throw it on the turntable.
8. Smith Westerns (HozAc) - When The Smith Westerns play, shit gets fucking broken. And shit gets thrown at them. I myself have thrown many things at them: half eaten corn cobs, lit fireworks, empty beers, giant stuffed hands, etc. The best was when we played with them at this BBQ and someone had gone into the alley and grabbed this huge stuffed bear and brought it into the mosh pit. The crowd tore it apart and it was like a snowstorm of stuffing for a whole song. They ended up taking turns wearing the bear's head as a hat for the rest of the show, not realizing that people had been going out to the alley and pissing on the bear all day. Fucking great. But, shenanigans aside, the Smith Westerns write really good songs, and they keep getting better everyday. I'm looking forward to hopefully be hearing alot of great things from them in the years to come.
9. Bad Sports (Boom Chick/Big Action)
10. Bold Ones (HozAc)
Top 5 songs:
1. Dutchess & The Duke - "Back to Me"/"Ship Made of Stone"....Too hard to choose.
2. Nobunny - "I am a Girlfriend"
3. Wax Museums - "Locked in the Mall"
4. Real Numbers - "Radio World"
5. Eric and the Happy Thoughts - "Bad Days"/Hunx and His Punx - "You Don't Like Rock 'n' Roll"
Things to look forward to in 2009: Teenage Lovers 7", more Smith Westerns releases, some Ryan Pitts and the Boy Toys 7" releases, Sweet Sixteens 7", Strange Boys LP, Boys Club LP, The Yolks finally going on tour and President Obama.
CAREER SUICIDE: The editor's personal favorite Canadian band. Dave plays drums for CS and is a good fella.
Though I spent most of the year, like most folks, trying to track down a lot of older records, there were a few newer things
I picked up that tweeked my interest. Not in any particular order, but this is the stuff that i enjoyed the most.
Brain Handle - "Smiling / Smiling Again" 7" (Iron Lung) - Still going on record as one of my favorite current hardcore bands that delivers not only
on a slab of wax, but also in a live set of totally chaotic retardation. These two songs are top shelf, but I cringe knowing that not every copy came with
the beautiful artwork mine did.
Eddy Current Suppression Ring - "Primary Colors" LP (Goner) - Didn't see what the fuss was about at first, but I can't remember the last time I listened to
a full length this much. Nothing to blow your mind, just great, great songs.
Gentleman Jesse - s/t LP (Douchemaster) - Ok, maybe not quite the power-pop masterpiece that fans were expecting, but a great album nevertheless. Sadly songs like "Put Your Hands Together" and "Sidewalks" don't get written very often.
Mad Men - 'Wax World' Tape (self-released) - You can't write better hardcore than this. Give up douchebags.
Marked Men - "Fortune" 7" (Dirtnap) - Anyone who knows me can tell you that these guys have been my favorite current band six years running after first hearing them, not even up for debate. Having said that, this A side came right in time to make it for 2008 and hold us over until Ghosts. Just a great flawless song in the Marked Men tradition that should already have you hooked as soon as the vocals come in. Oh yeah, and there's a B side too. Will i ever see my heros live again?
Dutchess & The Duke - "Never Had A Chance" 7" (Hozac) - Though I've been slack on getting the LP, the B-side bumps this single into the top ten. While perfectly
capturing total sadness, "Scorpio" can still make you feel good in a way that few songs can.
Condominium - "Pupils" 7" (self-eleased) - A step up for these Twin Cities kids since their first record. "On/Off" is the standout jam, but this whole record is a
devestating mess of total rage.
Sex Vid - "Communal Living" 12" (Dom America) - I've been waiting for "Footsteps" to make it onto a record for a while now and thankfully it's paired with some
other sick jams. Totally crushing. Best thing they've done since their first EP, so i'm just going to ignore the fact that those last two 7"s came out.
School Jerks - Demo Tape (self-released) - North America's answer to Amdi Petersen's Arme without totally biting their style. With all the bands trying to cop
a feel on early American hardcore, these guys are really one of the only ones you should be jerking off to.
Mentally Challenged - "Disappeared" 7" (Deer Healer) - This is some scary shit. Nice standout in the sea of bland shit called 'hardcore' that people keep trying to
force down my throat. Good when someone can make an original punk record these days without making it sound like future pop written on Casio keyboards or
some third rate band pretending to be Fleetwood Mac.
ELECTRIC BUNNIES: These dudes are from Miami and have released a few stellar singles so far, which is getting everyone dizzy with anticipation for their LP to be released in 2009 on Florida's Dying.
Rather than a typical list, here are two cool records that weren't covered in this zine.
el-g - "Tout Ploie" (K-RAA-K)
Dino Felipe - 'No Fun' Demo (No Fun)
Paris Hilton's My New BFF
Miracle Berries (Synsepalum dulcificum)
Universal Audio LA-610 preamp
Difficult to say which one of these two had the biggest impact on music.
SARIM OF DENMARK: The mighty Sarim is/was a member of Livefastdie, Homeblitz, Vice City Rockers, Liquor Store and much more. Hit up his family's restaurant when visiting NYC.
A lotta records came out this year. I don’t own a lot of 'em cause I’m not so good at that money business. People move too quick now. People act like “the other day” has to be less than a fuckin' week ago. This year I listened to a lotta doo-wop and Arabic stuff. I have no idea why. Here’s some new shit I had that I thought was sick. Yeah buddy!
1. Terrible Twos LP/Every Detroit band I saw this year
New Year’s resolution for punque in 2009: make like Detroit and fuckin grow a pair. Go buy the Terrible Twos album. People should be rippin each others throats out to see them.
2. Human Eye - "Dinosaur Bones" 7"
This fucked up lookin' thing was kinda hard to get if I remember. I lucked out and got a copy. Somehow Academy had a bunch of 'em. I remember Mike sayin' "That’s just how we do it. You want 5 copies of the new Human Eye? WE GOT THAT." Anyways, this thing fuckin smokes. I didn’t really listen to the Urinals cover that much. I mean I liked it but the song "Shapes and Numbers" is so intense that I mostly listen to that on repeat. You could probably listen to just the drum track on this piece and it would be fuckin sicker than probably 99% of shit that came out this year. This is kinda like the soundtrack to the last scene of the long lost Mad Max movie that probably came between Road Warrior and Thunder Dome. Woulda had to have been after society really broke down and Max probably encountered another buncha fuckin lunatic wallaby fuckers out in the desert and felt the need to eradicate their leather speedo clad presence (not for nothing, it's probably a good way to maintain a nice sun tan) from the face of the miserably depraved outback earth and during the climactic final showdown where he blows up all their shit and steals their gas and valuables and he’s racing outta the desert before the giant bomb he rigged up in their shit blows up the whole fuckin' spot and people are shooting at him and shits blowing up all around him and he doesn’t give a fuck and he’s just totally in the fuckin zone goin like 250 in that fuckin car like “What up, I’m fuckin Mad Max I only make one face yeah what” and it’s really becoming quite a pastoral scene despite all the Australians with bad haircuts lookin like a buncha fuckin Cure fans on a roid romp and as he zooms toward the horizon through all the bloodshed and napalm and leather and death and the sun is hanging on the horizon setting the sky on fire just like Mad Max hanging onto the last traces of humanity and decency as he slowly wipes the land clean of all that is dark and evil and we all begin to realize that one day, no matter how fucked up it might be right now, no matter how many fake punks and pro wrestlers in cheap bondage are shooting at us from the tops of fuckin dune buggies with M-60s that soon they’ll all be dead and technology will be lost forever and we’ll all just have to hang out with Tina Turner’s legs and fuckin party. If anybody has a live bootleg of this song please contact me. "Dinosaur Bones" is good too.
4. Thomas Function – "Celebration" LP
I have never played air bass at a show ever before and I probably never will again.
3.14. Blank Dogs - "Stuck Inside The World" 7"
To be honest I don’t own most of the Blank Dogs stuff that came out this year. I’m sorry Scientist. I’m a laid back guy. I got too much legal fees and cable to be shelling my bread out to some faceless schmuck with a PayPal account every other day. I don’t even have a fuckin wallet. I left it on the counter at an El Cheapo in South Carolina a year and a half ago. Back in the days of wine and roses I’d buy any old piece of shit you threw in my face. Actually, that’s an exaggeration. I don’t own any bad records. EZ Video went outta business and I took the guy to town on the late night return slot. If I listen to it and it’s no good, I just toss it down the chute and it lands in a pile in the basement that feeds into a conveyor belt where illegal immigrants in tuxedos and hair nets with gas masks on chop Zola Jesus up like those guys in Philly do to the cheesesteaks with those weird square knives, right before the shit peacefully glides down the belt into a giant incinerator that powers an eternal flame I had installed at Terry Schiavo’s grave. No offense to Jesus, I just think he should go solo. Zola’s stealing his thunder, blocking the spotlight, pissing on his leg and telling him it’s mayonnaise. I looked at their myspace and she was in every fuckin picture. How am I supposed to get my nut to this shit if you don’t even show me some visuals of that tight 6-pack? This is my favorite Blank Dogs single from this year cause the chorus of “Stuck Inside the World” sounds like it could’ve been a DC Snipers song. Plus it's on Daggerman. If anybody wants to provide me with all the records that came out after this I would gladly take them. I got that one tape actually. Fifty bucks right now, lets fuckin go. No CODs, no questions asked. If anybody needs the Blank Dogs remixes feel free to contact me.
69. Wax Museums s/t LP
All fun punk. No bum junk.
667. The Barbaras and Girls of the Gravitron
The Barbaras is like watching a clown shredding backed up by the Ramones while they try to cover that fucked up video where R. Stevie Moore sucks off Frankie Valli. Girls of the Gravitron’s like if they spent all the face paint money on acid. Go see these bands it’s fuckin sick.
1986. Dan Melchior "Christmas for the Crows" LP
Dan Melchior is one of the most endless dudes I’ve ever met.
911. The Mahonies “Hey We Got Conies” 7”
The other day I heard Steve Gutenberg was back and he was… Dancing With the Stars! Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Somehow The Mahonies managed to memorize the recipe to the magically perfect combination of seven sevens and rips off the old L piece that you can only understand once every other time Hale Bopp passes closest to Orion’s Achillles Tendon while that castrati motherfucker with the Jordans aimlessly straddes a crater on the dark side of a Denny’s in Hell on Super Bowl Sunday. The last time I got that deep into the zone I got in a slappers only match with some dude while driving in a car in Hoboken. Fuckin jagaloons.
2001. Dutchess & the Duke "She's the..." LP
Gentle shredding. You go girl!
311. Cheveu s/t LP
Hangin' out with these dudes allowed me to realize that wakin up at 9am to go and take a drug test was fuckin stupid and I was gonna hang out and have a good time and I couldn’t even understand a fuckin word they were saying. I like all the little smirks when they play. Fuckin nuts. You go girl!
3. Hospitals "Hairdryer Peace" LP
Have you ever been sittin in school or at work or on a train or a bus or whatever and been so fed up with the whole fuckin thing that all you could think about was what it would be like if you just finally, after all those years of thinking about it, just fuckin let loose on everything? Anytime I sit in one of those movie theaters full of people with the stadium seating all I can think about is just getting up at the back and swan diving into all the people down in front while shitting my pants and vomiting. Or when you're gettin yelled at by the principal or the cops or somethin and all you can think about is how sick it would be if you could just puke all in their faces? You ever been driving and thought about what it would be like if you just cranked the wheel and drove off the side of the highway onto a buncha roofs or some shit? You’d definitely be fucked but the ride down would be pretty fuckin sick. This album sounds like an alternate universe where you can do all that, then get up and light yourself on fire and run screamin down the street until you find a big fuckin tall roof to jump off of and when you hit the ground you feel like a million bucks and you can just get up and pound a beer. This shits a fuckin symphony. It’s a magnum opus. I don’t even know what that is but there’s no way it can be bad. Well an opus is somethin like a masterpiece. Like in that movie with Richard Dreyfuss where he’s a music teacher and he’s all pissed cause his Corvair's a piece of shit and always breaks down and his sons fuckin deaf and his favorite student wants to fuck him or somethin and he cant cuz it was a fuckin Hallmark movie or some shit. I dont really remember it. Anyways he had that opus and it was like his masterpiece symphony or some such nonsense. And then you got a magnum, which is a big fuckin gun that’ll turn your fuckin face into manicotti on the ceiling. So you got a magnum opus. Boom! Every time I listen to this shit I hear new shit goin on I didnt notice before. At the end of "Walls" there’s fuckin seagulls. And it only happens once. And waves that turn into nuclear bombs goin off. Do you know how much fuckin work that musta been to get that in there like that? This is some seriously hi-fi fuckin shit right here. One of my favorite parts about the last record was all the crazy fuckin drums and this time around theres barely any and I don’t fuckin miss em at all. Instead of instruments this time around they just built a machine that turned the tears of kids they found in the streets who just got the shit beat outta em and the sweat of all those bums who don’t even bother askin for money into sound waves. This shit definitely took some serious time and thought and effort and time to put together. One time I saw this dude in the street with no legs below the knees and bandages on the nubs in a hospital gown just fuckin sprawled out like a ragdoll covered in dog piss in a wheelchair. I saw him almost every day for a while after that and every day he was even filthier and more fucked up lookin covered in more dried blood than before until I finally saw him laying on the ground one day with his mouth wide open not moving at all. The wheelchair was nowhere to be found. Later that day Uncle Sam and Nicholas Cage got him some nice clean sheets. This is what he heard in his head. This shit beats everything at it's own game and it could care less. Fuck you all.
12. T.I. “Whatever You Like”
Ya’ll got hot wings? You go girl! Hey Jill!
Top News Events 2008:
1. When they found Jesus frozen in ice and thawed him out and he had no idea what the hell we were talking about and then he said “Yo bro can you guys just chill?” You go girl!
2. Casey Anthony – “It wasn’t me! It was…can I see that phonebook for a second? Her! Fuck I gotta take a piss! Who wants to touch my tits?” You go girl!
3. Somalian pirates – When those guys on TV who talk fast and wear a lot of necklaces tell you they don’t give a fuck, they’re lying. I feel sorry for these guys wives. Or do I? You go girl!
4. Canada’s government collapses – Who knew they even had one? You go girl!
TIC TAC TOTALLY: Matt released some great records this year and got a lot of shit from a bunch of dicks for it. He did his own html for this list. Thanks?!
Hi TB readership. You can officially throw away your library card now because I'm writing everything you need to know.
BEST 7"es OF 2008 EVER:
CATATONIC YOUTH - Piss Scene - 7"
Said it before, sayin it again. Mr. Diltz man has officially proven, and even one-upped Darwinism by adding the proof that man evolved from not only monkeys, but really fucking cool monkeys. Was hoping this dude would send me a shirt but that's ok. If you don't have it you lost the war on terror.
AMBER ALERTS - Ghoast Houze - 7" Is this a joke? This is too awesome for how under received it was! A-side is excellent, fucked up, broken songs that sound like Fang killed the Lost Sounds and took over their gear. Maybe this is Beelzebub Youth's 2nd record. Among the lots of reasons this makes my cut (besides that its a great 7") is it rocks at both 33 and 45rpms!! Hahaha! For real though. B-side flips with a sick n droney airplane-like synth taking off on a long straight runway of melodramatic sludge punk. Builds to a cool chanted voice explaining some shit I dont understand but it sounds cool anyway. Very recommended and would call you a fag in a heartbeat if you didn't like it. This is the direction I hope the "weird" in "weird punk" goes. Just a little revision but same spirit and less freak moves just to be stupid and different. Shitty weird this ain't one bit. It has a point and sounds good, nicely avoiding "avoiding" being boring through cheap shots. Hope to rock this into a wheelchair. Peace fuckerz.
NERVE CITY - Bars & Over It - 7"
One man? I dunno, but this is great music for when the devil holds those cowboy heads up on his pitchfork. To me this is extending towards being symphonic loner punk in today's age. Just sounds like moody great layered music by some rag tag sack of shit orchestra. Thats a good thing, if you don't get that. B-side has chunks and chunks galore. I want more please! Notable textures and good production adds a lotta personal signature to it.
DEFEKTORS - Secret Trials - 7"
Nice recording and hope for an LP in 09 plus more 45s too (theres only 2 right? and the ER comp?). Talented guys playing that super angular post-punky stuff but with a nice head for when to drag in some obvious pop which adds something unique in that blend I think. Great band and singer can do some stuff. I see these dudes could be really huge. Also this 45 is notably HOT and jumps out off the vinyl at ya too.
LEADERS - Rub You Wrong - 7"
This record satisfies all my multiple personalities! I have one tooth sweet on and everything, and these tracks satisfy the demented bits, and the hate-filled bits. Plus the
classic-loving, hook-sucking, and even generally oddball sociopathic music lover in all of us! Electric Cadaver is a deep dark groove and can seem redundant due to time constraints on a 45, but it keeps happening with really gritty texture too which works it down nicely. Overall both songs are great and contain some unexpected bridge parts and neat synth sounds to compliment the straight punk up front.
DUCHESS OF SAIGON - Hootenanny - 7"
I like this one for the FUCKED marriage of Mayyors level tightness with some exquisite corpse vocal melodies that come from nowhere but keep crashing in like ocean waves carrying the tunes in like some lost shower takes. The matchup of this stream of consciousness feel contrasted to the militantly rigid ass background of great musicianship is tops and its 4 songs of this to play with.
THE ANALS - Commando of Love - 7"
You just need to get this classic before you suck even worse. This record owns you. You do not own it. Don't even try it.
WOUNDED LION - Carol Cloud - 7"
Carol Cloud just pops out to you immediately as a catchy and classic tune. This 7" clearly makes no attempt to be odd, strange, or even attach any baggage at all, and sets itself way apart for that on a simple mission to creat a good fucking record. I wouldn't call it minimalist and freak out a bunch of idiots into word games, but everything here is used to an end sparingly to great effect. If some bands would un-clutter their sound and try to make good songs alone we could have like 50 of these a minute. Wounded Lion = slayer of the ego, maker of the plainly awesome.
SO COW - Commuting - 7"
This one from Brian (AKA So Cow) confirms his stature as the tipsy Irish second coming of pop. three classics in my book. This record is great, and if you like anything even remotely oriented around good, pop songs, with Clean guitars you should really do yourself a huge favor and get this before it's gone. great writing, recording and big massive points for turning out such high caliber everything for basically a guy who does it all himself at this level of quality too. Oh you all should already know how good this record is Im wasting my space here.
TY SEGALL - Skin - 7"
Ok, I liked the LP, I liked the "It" 7", but this to me is the real winner. I don't know if it's Goodbye Boozy influence or what, but I swear this brings out the Charlie and the Moonhearts / Traditional Fools vibe I loved so much from those 7"s too actually on GB. Great moments to be had also on the LP and It, but those are more for fans of a scuzzed up Oh Sees than the raucous nastified Ty, who here can still be heard delving deeper, but yeah. Im done writing about this.
RUNNERS UP = WIGGINS - Feed the Ghost 7" / HUNX 7"s (both) / SINKS - Beat Out My Brains - 7" / POLAR STRONG 7" and more I forgot.
BEST LPs - in no particular god damn order at all and with no text because I have to poop (I'm not kidding! Ouch!):
V/A XXperiments LP (clowning on bitches actually means something because of this comp)
Magic Lantern LP (cant believe this is from a "demo")
Yussuf Jerusalem - A Heart Full of Sorrow - LP (GREAT!)
Frustrations - Glowing Red Pill - LP
Muslims LP (I reaaaly have to poop but this is a good album. Good use of gatefold too.)
J.T.IV - Cosmic Lightning - LP (yes its a reissue so what its great in 08 too!)
Der Teenage Panzerkorps - Games For Slaves - LP
Thomas Function - Celebration - LP
Nobunny - Love Visions - LP (I REALLY wanna get this done before I poop)
Human Eye - Fragments... - LP
Ooga Boogas - Romance & Adventure - LP
Pink Noise - Dream Code - LP (2008????)
TV GHOST - 12" on Die Stasi (2008????)
Lili Z - The Two of Us - LP (2008??? going to the "dark toilet" RIGHT NOW!)
(click to next page for Canderson's Year in pics...)
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