Sunday, April 25, 2021

Your famous last words started once your fingers hit the snooze...

I hope you willing to indulge me this week with one of my most listened to albums of the last six months.  It's a tribute album filled wall-to-wall with thoroughly unrecognizable contributors. No household name talent here.  So why not go with one of the original album's by the band in question?  Well, it's quite possible I shared one of them already on a previous Mystery Monday.  More significantly, their material is stimulating enough to translate effectively in virtually any set of hands that pick them up. To me this band's first three albums are to die for.  BTW, the physical CD version of this album was bundled with a label sampler that I'm omitting as it's irrelevant to the tribute - plus too many of the groups sound alike.

**Please do not reveal artist in comments!**


Saturday, April 24, 2021

Uanattached - s/t ep (1988, Throbbing Lobster)

Yet another Beantown proposition, who to their/our detriment only produced this one platter, a mere ep no less, but hey, I'll take six songs over four any day. The Unattached were one of those rare acts that knew how to mix it up from song to song without exuding anything resembling an identity crisis. Bearing a rootsy and rollicking no-frills penchant these four guys (who by the group pics on the back cover misleadingly suggest they were headbangers in the making) were potent rock and roll purists touching on such local luminaries as the Del Fuegos and the Neighborhoods. My pic hit of this platter is none other than "It's Only Love" a power pop basher that would have done the likes of Material Isssue more than a modicum of justice. To the contrary the bluesy slow jam, "Down" which concludes this joint is a lazy maneuver that luckily doesn't mar the whole of the record.

01. Yeah
02. Close Your Eyes
03. Midnight Love Thang
04. Help and Sympathy
05. It's Only Love
06. Down


Sunday, April 18, 2021

I know when everybody's got one you want one too.

It's time for another round of four eps. A dazzling quad-fecta of unrelated artists spanning as many decades as there are titles occupying this weeks folder. 

**Please do not reveal artists in comments!**


Saturday, April 17, 2021

The Heebee Jeebeez - All Sales Are Vinyl (1998, Mooey Bueno)

This week I stuck primarily to reviving dead links (see my last two entries for details), and I didn't have a chance to fool around with my turntable or tape deck...but I do have this, and it's more promising than you might surmise from this quartet bearing a rather hokey moniker.  Details are a bit scant on the Heebee Jeebeez (boy, I hope that name didn't doom them from scoring gigs) but this Bay Area export were a talented combo, specializing in plaintive, sonically spartan power pop who wagered on the trebly end of the spectrum.  No overproduction or slavish studio pizazz here - not by a longshot in fact. It's a bit tricky to link them to the modus operandi of many (if any) of their '90s contemporaries. Cockeyed Ghost perhaps, but even that comparison isn't especially accurate.  All Sales Are Vinyl is saturated with concise, incisively catchy salvos, with "Somebody Else's" and "Outside" winning the most points with yours truly.  The Heebees only falter on the unlisted concluding cut, "Push It," which can easily be excised from your playlist if you so choose.

01. Don't Tell Me
02. Calling All Over
03. Come On
04. Outside
05. Walk Away
06. Out of Time
07. Somebody Else's
08. Favorite Song
09. Anytime
10. Certain Kind of Girl
11. Told You
12. Wherever You Go
13. Push It


Sunday, April 11, 2021

Underneath silk riches sixty six million giving slaves...

Two CD compilation of b-sides spanning this band's career from 1991-2003, including an entire disc dedicated to covers.

**Please do not reveal artist in comments!**


Saturday, April 10, 2021

VA - A Wicked Good Time! (1981, Modern Method)

Population only counts for so much. Cities like Houston and Phoenix each boast roughly double the populous of Boston, MA, yet Beantown (at least during the eighties and nineties) outdid some of their larger locales in terms of pumping out renown bands by seemingly exponential margins. And it seems like that's how it went for not-so-renown Boston bands as well, the focus of A Wicked Good Time!  This bountiful seventeen song feast was issued by Modern Method Records, an in-house label for the wildly successful and still operating Newbury Comics chain.  Even though many Newbury Comics outlets resemble FYE's these days, the moniker for this record remains the store's slogan some forty years after the fact.

AWGT starts with a bang, via a combo called Pastiche, an edgy power pop act who only bore a trio of singles in their lifespan, sadly without a proper LP to show for themselves. Pastiche's hooky merger of guitars and keys should have cemented them as Boston's answer to the Pointed Sticks, and a definitive compilation of their studio recordings has been decades overdue.  The Outlets punky "3rd Floor for Me" is perhaps the most aggressive song they ever attached their name to, Swingers Resort were splendid power pop kids who really epitomized what was so enticing about that turn-of-the-decade aesthetic, and Future Dads wield a catchy sax line amidst their bangin' foray "New Feeling." And we're still not done talking about side one!  We're also treated to no less than two cuts from Boston's legendary punks La Peste whose "Lease on Life" plays out like a delightful re-write of Agent Orange's "Bloodstains." Finally, the Young Snakes featured future 'Til Tuesday front-woman Aimee Mann, who exudes a very different vocal dialect then we're used to on "Brains and Eggs." Love the Pylon-esque guitarwork on this one.

The album's second side is a bit spottier and somewhat more avant, with the likes of abrasive no-wavers Bound & Gagged, and on the opposite end of the spectrum Bird Songs of the Mesozoic (featuring Mission of Burma alum Roger Miller) whose instrumental "Pulse Piece" channels a Tubular Bells vein. We get another tasty nugget from Pastiche, and the otherwise unheard of Someone and the Somebodies lead us on a quick post-punk tear. Hometown heroes Boys Life also get it on the action with a pair of sassy, mid-paced punk churners.

01. Pastiche - Psycho Blonde
02. The Outlets - 3rd Floor for Me
03. Future Dads - New Feeling
04. Boys Life - I Wasn't Me
05. La Peste - Army of Apathy
06. Swingers Resort - Hit List
07. Young Snakes - Brains and Eggs
08. Vacuumheads - Preppie Girls
09. La Peste - Lease on Life
10. Suade Cowboys - Master
11. Bound & Gagged - Black Sand
12. Someone and the Somebodies - Before and After
13. Pastiche - This Reminds Me of the Future
14. Birdsongs of the Mesozoic - Pulse Piece
15. The Loners - Planet Spirit
16. Bound & Gagged - Personal Monsters
17. Boys Life - Heroes of the Dead


Doctors' Mob - She Said 12" (1986, Wrestler)

Doctors' Mob were part and parcel of Austin, TX's so called "new sincerity" indie movement circa the mid-80s, alongside contemporaries Glass Eye and the Reivers among several other bygone aggregations.  The word "sincerity" of course is subjective and is a lousy descriptor of any piece of music, but this guitars-y cabal were considerably amped-out and boasted the kind of integrity most of you will appreciate.  This three-songer finds the Mob applying a Husker Du-ish treatment to their cover of the Fab Four's "She Said, She Said."  They keep things at a rolling boil on this single's pair of crankin' originals, "Time's Up" and "Lost of Course," the latter of which appears to be exclusive to this 12". Additionally, there are two Doctors' Mob full lengths (1986's Headache Machine and '87s Sophomore Slump) to supplement this hearty appetizer.

A. She Said, She Said
B1. Time's Up
B2. Lost of Course


Sunday, April 4, 2021 Edmonton, Alberta or home in Halifax?

From 2001. A not-so difficult sophomore solo record to say the least - though technically it's not a "solo" affair.  Sorry for any confusion. Perspective is everything!

**Please do not reveal artist in comments!**


Saturday, April 3, 2021

radioblue - warehouse mLP (1989, mercybeat)

I've been a sucker for U2's tell-tale guitar technique upon hearing "Pride (In the Name of Love)" in '85.  The Edge's serrated but jangly, echoing chords are impossible to tire of, even in the hands of scores of other guitarists, albeit many less capable. radioblue were no doubt tuned into said innovation, but the Bono & Co. comparisons largely end there on the band's warehouse, mini-LP.  Poignant but anything but pompous, this Bethesda, MD foursome didn't merely posses a plethora of raw, tingly licks, rather the songs they're ensconced within were ultimately the main attraction. Sure, by twenty-first century standards this record doesn't strike me as nearly advanced as when these seven tunes were laid down in separate sessions circa the late '80 (side one was committed to 8 track recording apparatus, while the flip went the even more basic 4 track route), but the intervening decades haven't diminished a smidgen of power and appeal from "instead," "love tornados," and "empty sky."  Love what I'm hearing, even if I am three decades late to the party.  Two more radioblue offerings would surface in the coming years, neither of which unfortunately are readily available anymore.  

01. instead
02. siamese
03. everything for you
04. blues
05. untitled interlude
06. lvoe tornados
07. instrumental in d minor, a basic history of art
08. empty sky


Shelf Life 7" (199?, Cassiel)

I'm not sure what became of Shelf Life, if only due to the fact that I have no pertinent details on how/where they originated.  This single, apparently their lone release, doesn't even bear a copyright date, though a reasonable estimation is 1995/96. Nonetheless, it was a good era to be vending indie rock, and had Shelf Life stuck around for an album or two we might be remebering them in the same thought bubble as contemporaries New Radiant Storm King, The Multiple Cat and Raymond Brake.  I could go for a little more personalty here, but both sides still hit the spot with "Silver Lining" winning me over the most.  BTW Cassiel records was responsible for an early Mountain Goats single, and if you own it you've got a collector's item on your hands.

A. The Object
B. Silver Lining