Sunday, April 26, 2015

Running far away out of your eyes...

From 1985.  I can't believe it's not butter The Cure.


Saturday, April 25, 2015

Re-uploads for April.

Here's the best I could do.  Thanks for your requests.

Visitors - No Sign of Intelligent Life
Luxurious Bags - Frayed Knots
Sheila Divine - s/t ep
Jellyfishbabies - The Unkind Truth About Rome
The Furys - Indoor/Outdoor ep
The Fugue - Waiting for Something
Rooney - three eps
Dramarama - The Days of Wayne and Roses
Nightman - No Escape
Brave New World - The Law of Series ep
Bitter Pleasures - Eat the Monument ep
Sea Hags - demo
Expando Brain - Mother of God its...
Young Pioneers - tape
A Picture Made - 7"
The Chant - Two Car Mirage & Three Sheets to the Wind
Field Trip - Beautiful
Clay Idols - Falling Down Backwards
Sammy - Chili Lite 7"
Eric Menck and Paul Chastain - Firetrucks and Periwinkles
Fig Dish - Unleash the Cracken
Sweet Jesus - discography
Caretaker Race - Hangover Square
Minerva Strain - Blue Tarantella
Contras - Ciphers in the Snow
Fingers - Video Games ep
V/A - Imaginary Records comp
Tina, Age 13 - The Alcoholic Father of My Inner Child
Windbreakers - At Home With...
Howard and Tim's Paid Vacation - I Never Met a Girl
Beat Temptation - Concerned About Rock Music?
Nocturnal Projections - Nerve Ends in Power Lines
Lucy Brown - s/t 1988
Scared of Chaka/Flake Music - split 7"
New Musik - Straight Lines ep
Propaganda - Calling on Moscow ep
Yo - Charm World
Mock Turtles - 87-90
Juliana Hatfield & Evan Dando - The Mercury Lounge, NYC 9/30/10
Luxury - EP #1
The Teardrop Explodes - live 3/7/81, Mount Vernon, NY
Dharma Bums - Givin' In 7"
Dangtrippers - Incantation 7"

Friday, April 24, 2015

Swervedriver - I Wasn't Born To Lose You (2015, Cobraside) - a brief review

Swervedriver’s reunion is one of those rare rock and roll rekindlings that’s not the least bit questionable.   No need to ponder over the integrity of the singer guy's (Adam Franklin) vocals, nor should one be suspect about the group’s motives.  In fact, the only circumstance where you'll be paying three-figures a pop to see them perform is if they've attached themselves to a music festival.  Simply put, there's no acrimony between this band and their humble legion of hanger-oners , and despite the decade long layover once a Swervies fan, always a Swervies fan.

I was absolutely besotted with their debut Raise, when it dropped in 1991.  A seemingly effortless (and perhaps unintentional) amalgam of ear-bleeding dream-pop rock, buttressed with grunge-worthy heaps of distortion that found this Oxford, UK quartet traipsing on the coattails of both disparate spheres in more than respectable fashion.  No question about it, Raise was a revelation - an often murky latticework of amped-out feedback, woozy pedal-ridden effects, and subrosa melodies.  Truth be told I pined for the guitarsy freak-outs of "Sandblasted" and "Son of Mustang Ford" to be remolded on subsequent Swervdriver albums.  That selfish “pining,” as it were, remains unfulfilled to this day, but even with the more noisome attributes tamped down, the band's sinewy and complex arrangements were retained on Mezcal Head, Ejector Seat Reservation, and 99th Dream, albeit in a measurably more lucid modus operandi.  So where and how does I Wasn't Born to Lose You stack up after such an elephantine wait?

Amazingly, I Wasn't Born... sounds like a bona fide Swervedriver album, and not merely a continuation of Adam's solo albums, or stretching back a bit further, his post-SD conglomeration Toshack Highway.  Perhaps we can chalk this up to three quarters of the '90s line-up still loyally intact, with lead six-stringer Jimmy Hartridge and bassist Steve George remaining in tow - almost as integral to the band's chemistry as Adam Franklin himself.  The tuneful and glistening opening salvo, "Autodidact" doesn't pick up where 1998's 99th Dream left off, so much as their sophomore 1993 platter Mezcal Head.  "Autodidact" is a remarkably good sign of things to come, leading into Born's... most sonically dense cut, "Last Rites," which is accented with washes of flanged guitars and sturdy sonic musculature.  Further in, "Deep Wound" is about as close as the Swervies come to replicating Raise's feedback-layered aesthetic.  "Setting Sun's" chiming interplay and the resonating "For a Day Like Tomorrow" could also pass for outtakes of yore.  Aside from the overlong "Everso" and "Red Queen Arms Race's" bluesy, slow-burning stride, I Wasn't Born... is near faultless.  It's tempting to refer to this as Swervedriver's "return to form," but the fact is they've deviated negligibly from their twentieth century formula.  Furthermore, one is left to wonder how many more terrific Swervedriver albums we'd have on our hands had it not been for their fifteen year dormancy between records!

The band have concluded a run of dates in the States, and will be visiting Canada in May and June.  Check out I Wasn't Born to Lose You from Amazon, iTunes, and Insound.  

Thursday, April 23, 2015

VA - Teen Line No. 2. (covering letters S to U, 1979-86)

It appears a heck of a lot of you were down with my first Teen Line compilation offering from last month, making the presentation of volume two in the series a no brainer.  For those of you who wish to get caught up to speed, check out my write-up in the link above.  In a nutshell, the fan-curated Teen Line series was a Nuggets-esque assemblage of American DIY power pop singles with an emphasis on acts that opted not to tread in the more aggressive footsteps of punk.  Not much in the way of household name status here, dovetailing perfectly within the wheelhouse of this humble webpage.

Boasting 27 songs by nearly as many participants, certain cuts are unsurprisingly more prime than others on Teen Line no. 2.  There are no less than three compositions from a Santa Barbara act the curator was notably partial to, The Tearaways, who by the way still maintain a presence.  In fact I posted  a (mulleted) Tearways related project dubbed the Volcanos not too long ago, but I digress.  Another band featured here with an even closer brush with fame is Shrapnel, featuring a pre-stoner, pre-Monster Magnet Dave Wyndorf.  Damn, why they didn't go with the far more potent and visceral "Combat Love" instead of the comparatively flacid "Go Cruisin'" is beyond me.  Ponderous.  Other offerings on the heightened likability side of the fence include The Tyrants, Tiny Voices, Two Minutes 50, Buffalo's Toys and Milwaukee's invariably satisfying SquaresI'd be remiss if I didn't mention that Tweed's cult classic "I Need That Record," a Nick Lowe-induced three minute surge praising vinyl (and exclusively vinyl), earns it's rightful spot on the Teen Line roster to boot. The track list is to your left.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Continentals - Fizz Pop (Modern Rock) ep (1980, Epic)

Recently had a request for this one.  The Continentals Fizz Pop... 10" ep was released in conjunction with two other 10" eps by New Musik and Propaganda on Epic Records as part of their "Nu Disk" series which I opined about in 2009.   This trio was said to be of American descent, but were apparently stationed in the UK.  Indistinctive, but largely effective power pop/AOR in the mold of contemporaries The A's and Tommy Tutone.  Per Discogs this was ostensibly The Continentals parting shot, and was produced by Tommy Erdelyi (Ramone). 

01. Fizz Pop (Modern Rock)
02. Walking Tall
03. Housewives Delight
04. Two Lips From Amsterdam

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Now the phone can ring and ring...

Twenty tracks of singles, rarities and dysfunctional glory from one of the best kept secrets in Athens, GA indie rock, with an emphasis on rock.


Guided by Voices - Beer Thousand Insects Of Rock Tour 10" - Threadwaxing Space, New York, June 25, 1994

This one is pretty cut and dry.  2014 saw the twentieth anniversary of Guided By Voices breakthrough masterstroke, Bee Thousand.  Considering the onstage antics of figurehead Robert Pollard go hand in hand with booze, it was only a matter of time that the tradewinds of cross-marketing would propel the man in question to unite with a hip distillery to craft a hearty new brew.  An expanded Director's Cut reissue of Bee Thousand dropped on the album's tenth anniversary in '04, and I suppose the only fitting way to up the ante ten years later was to let the sweet amber flow.

You can peruse some pertinent details about the collaboration with Dogfish Head brewery here, where you will learn (if you haven't already) about a special 1000 pack bundle of the drink that was paired with an exclusive GBV 10" ep, featuring ten songs from a 1994 gig at New York's Threadwaxing Space.  This particular combo has long sold out, and to my knowledge the music hasn't been made available elsewhere.  That's about to change right about now.  Behold, a veritable dream setlist from the band's storied Pollard/Sprout/Mitchell et al incarnation, and a performance that can ironically be described as...sober.  Go ahead and get hammered.  I'm making this available in FLAC and MP3.

01. Shocker in Gloomtown
02. Non-Absorbing
03. Gold Star for Robot Boy
04. 14 Cheerleader Coldfront
05. Break Even
06. Postal Blowfish
07. Drinker's Peace
08. My Impression Now
09. Echoes Myron
10. I Am a Scientist

MP3  or  FLAC

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The Stockings - Red Tango (1981, Rough Diamond)

I've got an Aussie import for you today that I was compelled to track down upon stumbling across an MP3 of The Stockings' "(She's a) Devil."  Hailing from Australia's left coast, this Perth combo indulged in driving, albeit straitlaced power pop/wave without resorting to any obvious gimmicks, not unlike contemporary country-mates the Serious Young Insects, who I featured a spell or two back.  The title track, which opens this thing up, is less than substantive, but once it passes, Red Tango is predominantly if not completely good news.  In addition to the aforementioned "(She's a) Devil," "Good Luck,""Boy Girl," and "Limbo" persuade me just as much.  I'm detecting negligible traces of XTC and Joe Jackson among others, but your results may vary.  An ep and some singles surrounded Red Tango, but it appears the album's track list overlaps heavily.  At any rate, enjoy (or not).

01. Red Tango
02. Limbo
03. This Girl That Girl
04. Make You Cry
05. Mercy Man
06. Good Luck
07. Boy Girls
08. Tiny Voices
09. Relief
10. (She's a) Devil
11. On My Knees

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Windbreakers - I'll Be Back 12" (1986, DB)

You know 'em, you (should) love 'em, Tim Lee and Bobby Sutliff, the duo aka The Windbreakers, one of the most genuine and consistently gratifying guitar pop acts to emanate from the deep south, circa the Reagan-era.  I've dedicated no shortage of space to them over the tenure of this site, be it via their Electric Landlady and At Home With Bobby and Tim cd reissues, not to mention a couple of Tim Lee side projects.  I have one more morsel from the Windbreakers oeuvre to impart, namely this 12"/ep, featuring the sitar-flavored "I'll Be Back," an emphasis track from the band's 1986 Run LP.  Like the Plimsouls?  You'll be totally down with this tasty jam.  It's backed with two exclusive tracks.  First up it's "Don't Take Her Out of My World," a cover of an early, pre-stardom Katrina and the Waves song.  The final selection, "Things We Never Say" was penned by Lee collaborator Howard Wuefling

BTW, in case you weren't aware, Bobby was critically injured in a 2012 car accident, which you can catch up to date on here.  While he was on the mend, a tribute CD, Skrang! Sounds Like Bobby Sutliff was curated to raise funds for his recovery.  It's still available through Paisley Pop

A. I'll Be Back
B1. Don't Take Her Out of My World
B2. Things We Never Say

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Your first impression begs for one last try...

Two albums from a late '90s Midwest combo you've likely never heard of...but that's about to change.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Semion - Get a Grip mLP (2000)

The following blurb was taken from issue 49 of Big Takeover magazine.  I remembering liking this one at the time and still do, as well as a full length that followed a few years later.  Semion's website is dormant, and there's not much further info to be had on 'em it appears. 

These indie-Brit power-poppers have a knack for jangly pop that runs the gamut from The Ropers (“Paul Loves Derek”), Teenage Fanclub (“Dumb”), early Sloan (“Sunny”), and even Eugenius (“Year of the Monkee,” which cops a few lines from the Replacements “Talent Show”). While Get a Grip finds Semion cutting their teeth on all the aforementioned, it’s pretty apparent that the band has yet to grow into a fully distinctive sound that they can claim as their own.   Still, with what they presently aspire to, they’re off to a fine start.

01. Paul Loves Derek
02. Theme From Semion
03. Sunny
04. Under the Sea
05. Dumb
06. I Can Dream All Day
07. Year of the Monkee