Friday, September 30, 2011

Not Shakespeare ep (1986, Not)

The roster of bands Mitch Easter produced at his fabled Drive-In Studios throughout the '80s is utterly staggering, and as far as I'm concerned bottomless, given that I'm still stumbling upon more vintage college rock records that have his name adorning back sleeves, as is the case with Richmond, VA exports Not Shakespeare.   I can't say this trio had a very heavy handed REM or Let's Active inflection to them, but still a relatively recognizable Mitch Easter production.  It's more Cactus World News than dBs if you get my drift.  "Get Well Soon" would have fit in snugly on a Red Rockers album.  Overall, immensely satisfying if not particularly innovative.  A Complete Bunch of Pants blog has some kinds words to extol on them, including a brief mention of a NS tape titled Not for Sale, and another 12" ep that followed this one.  My apologies for the pesky vinyl static and snaps.

01. Get Well Soon
02. Heaven
03. Turnaround
04. Susan


http://netkups.com/?d=6e8952ef82503

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sloth - s/t (1987, Soundworks)

So, the band is from Brooklyn, their album was recorded in Belgium, and it was released on a Belgian label?  What gives?  Since Sloth didn't exactly leave the largest of footprints on the net (though there is a posthumous Myspace site) I really have no explanation for those odd geographic circumstances, but whatever.   On their first and last album, Sloth strike me as being on the same wavelength as Green River, and dialing back a couple of decades, the Stooges.  Not overly derivative of either I should add, but in certain places on Sloth (e.g. "Islamic Judge" and "Zero-ville") I'm also detecting traces of the Mats, Hanoi Rocks, and New York Dolls.  I should note that some of the non-album tracks they're hosting on Myspace smack distinctly of the Stones.  Upon giving this a few spins, I'm still trying to make up my mind if Sloth were employing their full potential, or if that potential still needed some tweaking.   Hopefully upon listening to this you'll draw a more definitive conclusion than I was able to.

01. Mellow Out
02. Hospital
03. Gentle Touch
04. Hands On
05. Islamic Judge
06. Zero-ville
07. Skull Fuck Bonanza
08. Long Fast Drive
09. Bloodhound
10. Strangled Urge

http://netkups.com/?d=a8801ff5cc72e

Monday, September 26, 2011

Various - The Best of 415 Records (1994, 415/Columbia Legacy)

Had a request for this last week, and it's one I'm happy to oblige.  The history of 415 Records goes beyond the five bands represented here, rather Wire Train, Translator, Red Rockers, Romeo Void and Until December were the only ones who appeared on the 415 imprint as a subsidiary to Columbia Records during the label's mid-80s heyday.  Prior to their alignment with was is now Sony Records, the indie-era 415 was also home to SVT, Monkey Rhythm, New Math (later Jet Black Berries), The Uptones, and the rather frivolous Pop-O-PiesThe Best of 415 Records bypasses these worthy, but lower rung commodities in favor of the first five outfits I rattled off above. 

Even under the auspices of a big, bad major label that I'm certain was breathing "sales, sales, sales!" down the neck of founder Howie Klein, 415 Records had an uncanny knack for signing edgy, integrity conscious post-punk acts that happened to possess potential crossover appeal.  An though mainstream success by and large eluded this bygone roster, the 415 logo was a veritable trademark of quality so far as I was concerned.  Averaging about four songs apiece from each group, The Best of... serves as an (in)adequate overview, and doesn't extend much further beyond that.  The relatively obvious "signature songs" are all present and accounted for:  Wire Train's "Chamber of Hellos" Romeo Void's "Never Say Never" and "A Girl in Trouble," Red Rockers "China," and last but not least Translator's "Everywhere That I'm Not."   It's easy for me to quibble over some of the choice moments by many of these groups that were passed over (no "Unalone" by Translator, or Wire Train's jangle-pop moment in the sun, "I'll Do You"?!), but eventually, the individual albums these songs were culled from were reissued in their entirety, thanks in large part to Wounded Bird Records.  Since many of these songs are commercially available again, this may be a limited time share.

Wire Train
01. Chamber of Hellos
02. With God on Our Side
03. She Comes On

Romeo Void
04. A Girl in Trouble
05. Never Say Never
06. Not Safe

Red Rockers
07. China
08. Guns of Revolution
09. Dead Heroes

Translator
10. Everywhere That I'm Not
11. When I Am With You
12. Everywhere
13. I Need You to Love

Until December
14. We Are the Boys
15. Until December
16. Geisha
17. Heaven

http://www73.zippyshare.com/v/14375584/file.html

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Nirvana fan newsletter and other assorted ephemera. It was twenty year ago today...

...that a small town, high school senior made a mad dash to the local record dispensary the second school let out to buy an album he had been anticipating for months - on cassette no less.  Backing up a bit, in December of 1990, upon strolling into Erl Records in downtown Albany, NY, I was blitzkrieged by the assaulting, guttural wallop of Nirvana's "Negative Creep."  Who was this friggin animal I thought?  Was this Tad's latest single that I hadn't been previously informed of?  That blast, from what is now very much the past, didn't scare me off for long, because a week later I went back to Erl to secure my own copy of Bleach, just prior to New Years Day of the year punk broke.  It was a metallic k.o. of huge proportions to me, a fixture of my weekly if not daily soundtrack of the first three quarters of '91.  By spring of that year, news dropped that Nirvana would no longer be a Sub Pop proposition.  Wasn't quite sure what to expect, that was until $10 bootleg 7"s of what were to be demos for Nevermind began to surface, which a friend was gracious enough to dub for me.  I believe one of those singles was prophetically dubbed The Triple Platinum ep.  With that dubbed cassette in my Plymouth Reliant's tape deck, (competing for time with my bedroom desktop stereo) I quickly came to the conclusion that spring and summer that I had a new favorite band.  Unfortunately my attempts to get an advance tape of Nevermind proved fruitless, and I was forced to tough it out until September 24th.

For the life of me, their meteoric ascent was something I couldn't rationalize, and I could only take comfort in the fact that most of the metal heads and Deadheads occupying my stomping ground were indifferent to them.  Nonetheless, I was gradually forced to cash in a very sacred cow, to a surprisingly appreciative world.  There was communication between my home address and Nirvana's Bleach correspondence address, the majority of which was one-way, with the exception of a two-page, October '91 newsletter printed on light dayglow-green paper (Both sides of which can be read at full size with the click of mouse).  And the kicker?  It's signed at the bottom of the second page by "Kurdt," Chris and Dave.  If that wasn't enough to get me stoked, they also included a tour itinerary, t-shirt order form, and bumper sticker.  The text of the letter itself, penned within a month of Nevermind's release, mentions the band was thrown out of their own release party.  And there are other pertinent details, such as the story behind the unusual spelling of "Kurdt's" name, and the trio even go so far as to name check a fan (who ironically would soon have close personal ties to Nirvana) that voiced some objections with the new album.  An up-to-that-point discography is also provided on the second page, which details a fictionalized forthcoming split single.  I'm afraid I don't have much in the way of rare studio cuts or uncirculated live shows to pull out of my ass, this but this boilerplate newsletter was pretty damn poignant to this set of eyes.  Below is a link where you can download full size versions of everything, including the tour itinerary I mentioned.

https://rapidshare.com/files/3994799651/nirvana91newsletter.rar

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Cuts - s/t (1985)

Here's another one in a long list of Ebay misfires.  Well, not a complete misfire anyway.  With The Cuts,  I assumed I was going to be settling in for a good twenty minute steam-bath of raw, unadulterated hardcore, given that this trio looked like they were still attending grade school judging from the inner sleeve pic.  No. I don't think so.  This nascent Vermont set actually had some fairly sophisticated intentions in mind on this self-titled, schizophrenic curiosity of a record.  What I wound up with was weirdo techno pop, that for better or worse didn't subscribe to the typical Anglo conventions of the era.  The Cuts may have been technically proficient, but quality control was given short shrift so far as songwriting was concerned, with lyrical content ranging from the absurdly daft to insipid.  "What About France," which closes out side one is such a cheesy atrocity I gave serious consideration to excluding it entirely.  There's a healthy amount of sax-enhancement on this disk too, courtesy of Eric Jacobs (who also manages the synths), lending additional textures that run the gamut from reggae-lite to cocktail jazz.  Off kilter stuff to say the least, but if anything else, this album confirms there was something resembling life in Vermont other than Phish during the '80s.  BTW, I omitted the title of track eleven below so as not to offend anyone.

01. Architecture
02. The Raised Eyebrow
03. No Pain
04. Tomorrow's Woman
05. The Gift
06. What About France
07. Older
08. All Touch/No Feel
09. The Optomisim Song
10. Different Country
11.

http://netkups.com/?d=043fb2f10e825

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I-Rails - Nine Songs From Nowhere (1989)

This past spring, I shared a couple of vintage, albeit rather inspired releases from The I-Rails, a band who's only remote claim to fame was their involvement with future Primitive Radio Gods figurehead Chris O'Conner.  I wouldn't let that scare you off, as the I-Rails were about 180 degrees from the aforementioned one hit wonders.  When posting their 1990 cassette album, Panharmonium, I mentioned there were three cassettes that preceded it which I didn't have in my possession.  That's still very much the case, however as of last week I have the missing three reels at the base of my sleeve, conveniently converted to ones and zeroes.  I'm sharing the Rails third tape, Nine Songs From Nowhere, featuring among other fine selections the staggeringly infectious "Sticks and Stones."  Like me, a lot of you were instantly endeared to Panharmonium and were clamoring for more, so here you are, with the other two albums to hopefully follow in the near future.  For a (slightly) more thorough backgrounder on the I-Rails, point your cursor to the hyperlinks in this article.  A very hearty thanks to the gentlemen who digitized these tracks and sent them in my direction!

01. Not My World
02. The Meaning of Life
03. Punk is Dead
04. One Day Older
05. Sticks and Stones
06. Under the Influence
07. Primitive Radio Gods
08. Slave to a Dream
09. Holy Town

http://www49.zippyshare.com/v/73540847/file.html

Monday, September 19, 2011

Human Television - demos (200?)

I've wanted to do an entry on Human Television probably as long as I've been doing Wilfully Obscure.  The thing is, their meager catalog is still in print, digitally and otherwise, which means I didn't want to ruffle any feathers.  I do however have this collection of demos and rough mixes for their All Songs By Human Television ep, which I'm assuming I'm at liberty to distribute.  Apparently on hiatus at the moment, Human Television were a bunch of Florida transplants that relocated to New York and Philadelphia.  Cutting their jangly, noise-pop teeth during their mid-aughts tenure, HTV struck a happy (not to mention irresistible) medium of C86 era hanger-ons Wedding Present, with the sprite, post-punk revivalist sheik of The Strokes.  Not a bad formula to lay the foundation with if you ask me.  In addition to the All Songs... ep, there was a preceding CD single, and an excellent 2006 full length, Look at Who You're Talking To.  I don't have the titles to the particularly raw first two tracks, which so far as I can tell weren't re-recorded for commercial release.  Nonetheless, there are flourishes of clangy brilliance here.  Enjoy (or not).  Nice lengthy article on them here.

01. Such A Trip

02. Tonight's The Night
03. Yeah Right
04. Automobile
05. Tell Me What You Want
06. I Forgot
07. Saw You Walking By
08. Cars Are Weird
09. Tell Me What You Want (alt vers)
10. Automobile (alt vers)

http://netkups.com/?d=e2541dd191e61

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Singles Going Single #186 - Brody "Against Forgetting" 7" (Creep, 1995)

It would seem that Brody's main claim to fame is serving as the launching pad for guitarist Fred Mascherino, who would later go on to replace John Nolan of Taking Back Sunday.  Based in Philly, Brody's run spanned most of the '90s and produced this 7" and a mini-album, Worth Dying For.  "Against Forgetting" is a superlative slice of tuneful emo-punk from that era, that finds Brody subscribing to the aesthetics shared by contemporaries Sense Field and Texas is the Reason.  Cool.  A somewhat shoddy run-through of Don Henley's "Boys of Summer?"  Not so cool, but listenable.  The comparatively lengthy b-side, "Teaspoon" boasts well executed dynamics and for better or worse, is archetypal fare for Brody's genre of choice.  Mascherino has since departed TBS and now resides in The Color Fred.

A1. Against Forgetting
A2. Boys of Summer
B. Teaspoon


http://netkups.com/?d=1df25e701ad12

Singles Going Single #185 - Scrimmage Heroes 7" (2002, Slowgun)

Back in the late '90s when I first encountered gnarly, Orange County pop-punks Scrimmage Heroes, I wasn't aware that Mark Arnold of Big Drill Car had any involvement with them, but from from the research I gleaned over the weekend, that's exactly the case.  Being the decades-long mondo BDC acolyte that I am, a slap to the forehead was in order, but I wasn't too hard on myself, because even though there's been little activity from the Scrimmage camp in almost ten years I can still partake in their records, and this one is particularly riveting.  What you have in store here are three ace slabs of melodious, riff-addled power punk informed by All and the aforementioned BDC, but with the more nuanced tact and pop acumen of Superdrag.  Scrimmage Heroes have a pair of albums under their belt, 1999's Nothing Comes Clean, and the more idiosyncratic 2002 follow-up, The Mighty Insect.  Incidentally the band's name appears in silver Mylar on the front sleeve of this record, but sadly, it failed to translate via my flatbed scanner.   

A. Uncomfortable
B1. Mayday
B2. The Chapter on Mermaids

http://netkups.com/?d=dfd57a0f1c2f2

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Ten Ton Bridge - tape (1993)

Along with likeminded Twin Cities kin the Magnolias and Titanic Love Affair, Ten Ton Bridge fell far short of reaping the bountiful harvests their celebrated forebearers Soul Asylum and the Replacements cultivated, but I'm sure it wasn't for lack of trying.  The three track demo I'm sharing tonight was a precursor to their first proper album, Eager to Please, which wouldn't be brought to market until 1997.  You know the drill by now - deftly crafted songs, sturdy riffs, and that always essential melodic prowess to hem it up nice and tight.  Unlike just about any of the aforementioned combos I rattled off, I do have to admit that TTB don't flaunt much in the way of attitude, but nonetheless their formula not only sticks, but packs a sizable punch.  I would be remiss if I failed to note that the group's third album, Landfall was issued in 2010.  Finally, I have an earlier TTB demo, Abe, if anyone's itching to hear it.

01. Shut Ins
02. Fear Tomorrow
03. Knocked Out

http://netkups.com/?d=b5511205511f8

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

New Jetz - s/t (1982, Jet)

Back after a brief dryspell.  Today I submit to you New Jetz, a Denton, TX six-piece, who's bio on the back sleeve purports to them being an amalgam of post-punk, neo-reggae and power pop.  I'd say they're innocent of the first two charges and vaguely guilty of the latter, with the most egregious evidence manifesting itself via "Flesh Wound" and "Secret."  The promotional photo that accompanies the record depicts three of the five gentlemen Jetz with mustaches.  That can't be new wave can it?  Oh, that's right, they're from Texas.  A full length bio can be read at your leisure on their Myspace page.   BTW, New Jetz was not released on the same Jet Records that delivered us those early Ozzy Osbourne records.  Enjoy (or not).

01. Time Was Wrong
02. Flesh Wound
03. Privilege
04. Make Me Crazy
05. Secret
06. Expressed Yourself
07. Reflections
08. Jet Lag

http://netkups.com/?d=b123163f25c03

Friday, September 9, 2011

Alter Boys - Soul Desire +1 (1987, Big Time)

This album came recommended to by virtue of it's hefty jangle presence.  True, New York's Alter Boys baked plenty of ringing chords into the cake they dubbed Soul Desire, but that's that facet doesn't purvey itself as their dominant feature.  In fact, I'm not sure if there is a "predominant feature," so to speak, occupying these ten grooves.  The image of the scruffy, young nerf herders adorning the album sleeve belie a band that's (at least a little) wise beyond their years, pumping out taught, left-of-the-dial pop-rockers.  I'm not sure if the clean, airtight production job (courtesy of Dictators alum Andy Shernoff) does the Alter Boys justice.  In fact, I had a perfectly valid reason to be suspect upon later hearing a pre-Soul Desire a-side, "Piles" which I'm including as a bonus.  That 1986 track, which plays like early U2 by way of Minneapolis, is fantastically raw, stirring and altogether endearing, whereas ...Desire requires a little more patience.  Download, unzip, listen, and you'll see precisely what I mean. 

01. One Step Ahead of the Rain
02. One Eye Only
03. Sweet Blossom Mary
04. Staring at the Walls
05. Beautiful World
06. Daily Word
07. Put Me In Another Head
08. Mid-Winter Deathtrip
09. Dry-out Center
10. All I Remember
bonus: Piles

http://netkups.com/?d=700d4c34f505f

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Kid Icarus - American Ghosts (2011, Big School) - a brief overview

It would be an understatement to say that Kid Icarus should have been on my radar eons ago.  I certainly had the opportunity given they (the 'they' being attributed predominantly to head honcho Eric Schlittler) already had four albums under their belt, but some much needed word of mouth was apparently lost in the translation to these eyes and ears.  I can't rightfuly say I know how those previous releases compare, but American Ghosts is a joyous excursion into mid-fi, sonic abandon.  Copious amounts of frilly and fuzzy reverb collide head-on with the clamorous, yet poignantly sweet twin guitar attack of Schlittler and cohort Justin Marchegiani.  Kid Icarus are mongers, if you will, of noise and melody, but add to this already potent cocktail a walloping dose of heady, billowy sonic expansiveness to push this affair over the top, particularly on "Bicycle Spokes II" and "Hang Gliders."  It's been noted that Kid Icarus owe more than a wink and a nod to '90s indie rock in general, and stretching even a little further back, many a band on the Homestead Records roster.  That said, they exude so much of what cult groups like Nice Strong Arm and Death of Samantha seemed to be painstakingly striving for, but on American Ghosts these guys see to it that vision is realized, albeit on their own slightly esoteric terms.  Check out this record digitally or otherwise.

Singles Going Single #184 - Tsar "Straight" 7" (2003, Birdman)

Seems like this just came out yesterday, but it's been more like eight years.  TSAR were a balls-out power pop outfit from L.A. who recorded a spectacular debut in 2000, but failed to follow it up until five years later.  That subsequent abum, Band Girls Money, found Tsar angling in a decidedly rawer, garage-rawk direction with fairly decent results.  Unfortunately, it went nowheresville and the proverbial "dream" slipped away.  I presume they have split up.  "Straight" is culled from that ill-fated record, while the b-side is exclusive to this release.   Close to three years ago, I shared a Tsar promo ep, King of the School, and a radio session, which you can still find here.  In the comments, it was mentioned that some pre-first album demos existed, which I'd love to hear.  If anyone is willing to cough them up, don't be a stranger.

A. Straight
B. The Creature in Disguise

http://netkups.com/?d=3e3312e5a2d02

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Dany Laj - The Match ep (2011, Boppa Do Down)

A little birdy passed this one along to me an what a pleasant "tweet" it turned out to be.  Dany Laj (abbreviated for Lajeunesse) is a chap from a small Ontario town who set off to Toronto to create the great American pop album.  Well, come to think of it, The Match isn't actually an American proposition at all, since he's still a Canadian resident, and furthermore this six-song release technically qualifies as an ep, so forget all that "album" nonsense.  What was I thinking?  So yeah, we have the great Canadian ep called The Match, which showcases a budding troubadour who has "raw talent" written all over him.  Laj possesses the same visceral moxie that forebearers Ted Leo, Elvis Costello, and Joel Plaskett made their respective calling cards, and just like that trifecta he makes it sound so damn effortless.  Beyond quality material if you ask me, but listen for yourself.  The Match apparently hasn't hit stores yet, and in fact, a record release party is slated for November 27 at The Piston on Bloor St. in Toronto.  Was so impressed with I heard I thought I'd share the ep in it's entirety (at least for a little while).  Per Laj's corner of  Facebook, he recently toured under Dany Laj and The Look, though I'm not certain if The Look are backing him up on these half dozen tracks.

01. The Match
02. Remedy
03. Alien Ate Some People
04. Oh Dear
05. Orange Buoy
06. Smile On Face

http://danylaj.bandcamp.com/album/the-match

Monday, September 5, 2011

Testa Rosa - Testa Rosa II (2010) - a brief overview

By the sound of Testa Rosa II's opener, "Big Girl," you'd swear someone had broken Phil Spector out of the clink, or at the very least paroled his ass prematurely.  On that wondrously aforementioned number, Testa Rosa prime mover Betty Belxrud oozes vintage, '60s girl-group gloss, and although this record isn't wall-to-wall, wall-of-sound, "If Only I Had Run" follows the same sublime tack.  There's plenty more retro-fitted bliss tucked into this co-ed, Milwaukee quartet's sophomore set.  Better yet, Belxrud and Co. dovetail their revivalist flair with a keen contemporary awareness, ably blowing off the spoon-fed hipster brain trust altogether.  Testa Rosa II is where genteel meets the ethereal, hauntingly lucid as Beach House and Mazzy Star, while occasionally bearing the hallmark harmonies and pop acumen of Motown acts of yore.  I say occasionally, because by album's end things slow to a whisper - a feather light comedown counterpointing a host of exhilarating highs.  Investigate purchasing Testa  Rosa II digitally or otherwise

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Phil 'n' the Blanks - Multiple Choice (1981, Pink)

Well, by the looks of things (namely the rather carefree band photo on the back sleeve) I was expecting this co-ed five-piece to rock out somewhere in the vicinity of Blondie.  What I had in store was a little darker and deeper than I expected, but I'm hardly complaining.  Phil 'n' the Blanks sport their fair share of new wave/power pop tendencies, but rhythmically, they wielded a serrated edge that most of their contemporaries couldn't be bothered with.  Vaguely reminiscent of Human Sexual Response, if only for the obvious erotic concerns.  Word is, this crew had a slew of entertaining videos that made the rounds at MTV, right around the time when the station went on the air.  Now we have YouTube.

01. Ou Est
02. Without Comsumption
03. Keeping Me Honest
04. Inspected By # 7
05. Push & Pull
06. Vi-Sectomy
07. How It's Done
08. (I'm Her) Sex Toy
09. Family, Work, Neighberhood, Peace & Freedom
10. The Ladder
11. Adavertising Girl
12. Void Fill
13. Sex Life
14. Black is Not a Color (It's a Situation)

http://netkups.com/?d=c11a56ce2219d

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Various - The letter "P" folder mix

I have a pretty vast trove of MP3s taking several hundred gigs on my beloved hard drive.  They're pretty organized, mostly in separate folders by album/single by band name.  For almost every complete album I have by an artist I archive just as many random one-off songs by artists I don't have a dedicated folder to.  These tracks have been corralled into letter folders A through Z.  I often forget these particular folders exist, that is unless I feel the urge to hear a specific track. 

It turns out that these 26 "letter" folders are a lot of fun to listen to on my MP3 player, as the disparate variety of songs (and their respective genres) run right into each other without any interruption.  To give you an idea of what is contained within one of these folders, I opted to go for the letter P, which is as representative as any.  The "P" folder currently houses 247 tracks, coming in at a little bit over one gigabyte in size.  Am I sharing all 247 selections?  Hardly.  I thought I'd try for sixteen instead.  I'm going to forgo the usual "setlist" that I routinely provide for my usual entries, as I don't want to give everything away, but a few items you'll find in my debut folder mix are a cheesy prank phone call, a vintage Primal Scream demo, a cover of a Psych Furs song, an actual Psych Furs b-side (that never made it to cd), an overlooked Prefab Sprout chestnut, more covers, and best of all, an intriguing but utterly rambling spoken word piece from the man who brought us the Lollaplooza festival.  Have fun with this.

http://netkups.com/?d=3cd7d32959493

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Locus Solus - Waverly (1994, Grass)

During their '90s tenure, the Grass Records label inexplicably scooped up a couple dozen WTF no-name bands, almost all of whom were unseasoned and had no prior track record to speak of.  It was a fun and occasionally freakish experiment for onlookers like myself, and though a few signees panned out marvelously (The Marshes, Twitch, Half Hour to Go) there were all-out duds many times over, both in terms of sales and artistic merit.  So where do Locus Solus register on the scale?  In the middle more or less, but had Grass' quality control been on par with the caliber of say, Merge or Touch and Go, my ranking of them might not be as generous.  In reference to Grass Record's early motto, Locus Solus "will grow on ya," but only after many successive and concerted listens.   Presumably hailing from Nashville (not a lick of biographical info to be found, at least on the web) this trio specialized in spare, nimble arrangements with lots of tingly guitar arpeggios and hushed vocals.  At best, the band's sonic aptitude and technique stretches into Thurston/Ranaldo terrain, but even with a reasonable semblance of dynamics in place, Solus' songs tend to ring far too anticlimactic, and even worse, innocuous.  Were Waverly not so sleepy and polite (but to the band's credit, defiantly indie) I would have been heralding this record years ago, instead of regarding it as just a mildy worthwhile curiosity.

01. MM
02. Tangled
03. Talking to Bees
04. Archipelago
05. Hinged in Stillness
06. Nepenthe
07. Habanero
08. Cower
09. Oughts Should Shine

http://netkups.com/?d=e91b13e642153

Singles Going Single #183 - Frontier Trust 7" (199?, Caulfield)

Frontier Trust weren't the only Nebraska natives on the Omaha-based Caulfield Records, but so far as I can tell they were the lone non-emo band on the roster.   I have however seen some "Americana" accusations leveled at this quartet, but Frontier Trust's chunky riffs strike me as a little too muscular to slot them into that genre alone.  I wouldn't be surprised if I was the only one to make this observation, but the gentleman on the mic, Gary Dean Davis is pretty much a dead-ringer for Eleventh Dream Day's Rick Rizzo.  In fact, the untitled lead-off track could have been plucked straight from EDD's Beet album.  I don't know the year of this record's release, but it preceded a full length, Speed Nebraska that's ripe for the picking here.

A1. Untitled
A2. Swimming Hole
B. Another Song About Failure

http://netkups.com/?d=122450a5a7f10