December 31, 2008

Show and Tell

The day after Christmas a friend took me to Baltimore to see a Kix-mas show. If you aren't familiar Kix they are a glam-rock band from Maryland who never saw the long term commercial success of say the Crue but managed to have one record go platinum in 1988 (Blow My Fuse).

The band still has legendary status in the Baltimore area so needless to say the show at Ram's Head was well attended by screaming fans who knew all the words to every song (my friend included). I will be the first to admit that glam metal doesn't butter my biscuit but the crowd loved them. Where I winced in embarrassment for the band as they actually use props for certain songs (the same ones they have been using for a decade+) and changed outfits a little here and there (velvet hat and red round John Lennon glasses for one of the ballads), once again their fans loved every minute of it. One woman's trash was clearly a nearly sold out venue's treasure.

What I really want to know is how those band members stay so friggin skinny. They were nearly all as thin as pre-pubescent teen girls. I also have to applaud these men for single handedly keeping the vest look alive. Vest with long sleeves, vests with a short sleeve half shirt, vest with no the vest.

More importantly I heard just about the best statement ever from a woman standing next to me whose husband was trying desperately to drag her closer to the stage. She dug her heels into the ground like a stubborn mule and screamed at him "I don't fuckin' need to be up front for this, it isn't like this is a Kid Rock show!!!"

December 26, 2008

You will be missed.

Eartha Kitt - I Want To Be Evil (She passed away this week at age 81 of colon cancer)

December 23, 2008

Time Off

I will be taking a week or so off from blogging. Having a lovely holiday.


Mac Review Cast

(circa 1977 pix of me)

December 22, 2008

I wish this wasn't stuck in my head

I had almost managed to push this Yo Gabba Gabba song out of my brain but then Anthony Bourdain had to go ahead and sing it in one of his episodes on TV. Dang it.

Liechtenstein - Security By Design

A new video from a band I adore.

December 19, 2008

Friday Flashcard: Name That Metal Band

I never get tired of this. Not only are their enough metal logos out there to go around the world twice but the serious self important things these bands say about themselves on their sites gives me endless joy.

For instance the Austrian band who belongs to the logo this week has this to say about themselves.

"______ stands for death, madness and everything dark and evil that exists on this planet."

Can you imagine introducing yourself at a bar with a line like that. And who wouldn't crack a smile when you said it?

I heart metal. I really do.

December 18, 2008

The Mean Reds

When you feel worse than blue

December 17, 2008

Think Early Stereolab or Lush

Norway keeps churning out lovely new music. I give you Je suis Animal. Their full length Self-taught Magic From A Book hasn't left my stereo all week and it managed to make my top 10 of the year list at that. For those of you who loved Mahogany's Connectivity! as much as I did will be all about this record too.

It's almost absurd how excited I am for you to hear this band. Enjoy!

December 16, 2008

Well This Is Exciting

Just read this on Aaron Turner's blog.(you know...the Isis, Hydra Head, fantastical artist fella)

"GREYMACHINE: another project long in the works is the debut album from greymachine (justin broadrick, dave cochrane, diarmuid dalton, and myself), which is finally in the finishing stages. titled "disconnected", the album will be out on hydra head sometime in the first portion of 2009. in the meantime you can hear a track from the album here . there has been loose talk of live shows at some point in the future, but the only concrete plan at the moment is to get the album out, an event all the participants have been greatly anticipating to despite our inability to get it done in a timely fashion."

* * * * * * * * *

And in other news check out this cool podcast of shoegaze gems.
Artist: These are Powers
Title: Terrific Seasons
Hometown: NYC / Chicago
Label: Hoss Records
Street Date: Out Now

RIYL: Sonic Youth having left a phone off the hook, The Liars (ex-Liars bass player Pat), Deathrock / No-Wave
Righter Magnitude Rating Scale: Moderate leaning towards strong

The band may have given their genre of music a pet name of "ghost punk" but the only thing haunting this record is the spirit of very early Sonic Youth and the Birthday Party.

These Are Powers pay a decent tribute to decadent noise led by primitive beats but I imagine anyone who calls themselves a serious Nick Cave / SY / the more avante less melodic side of the Liars would rather revisit those records in their record collection than consider giving this band a place on the shelf next to them.

December 15, 2008

The Future / Human League : The Golden Hour of the Future

Artist: The Future / Human League
Hometown: UK
Label: Black Melody
Street Date: Out Now

RILY: The roots of electronic, new wave, and experimental industrial music. Kraftwerk, mangled disco
The Hits: Blank Clocks
Richter Magnitude Rating Scale: Light to me, strong historically speaking.

The Future now exists in the present tense (in reissue form) and it comes armed with Korg synths and ready to dance. At least that seems to be what The Future meant to some forward thinking electronic instrument loving fellas from Sheffield England in the year 1977.

Before the band Human League entered the picture, two of the members Martyn Ware and Ian Craig were busy trying to master a brand new to the market synthesizer by Korg. These gentlemen weren't interested in being another punk band but were however inspired by the DIY ethics of the scene and applying it to disco...another tired genre they wanted no part of. Hungry to further exploit new technology the group incorporated found / sampled sounds to their music taking them even further way from music trends at the time. In fact A&R people who were given the band's demo suspect that the songs were a joke mocking the industry which in turn led the music executives to call security and have them thrown out of the building.

Shortly there after their third member Adi Newton left the group to form Clock DVA and the remaining members went on to rename The Future, Human League. The band that eventually went on to write 80's classics (if you care about 80's new wave music that is) like "Don't You Want Me" and "(Keep Feeling) Fascination".

While I understand the important role this band plays in breaking new grounds for electronic pop music, the music leaves me wholly unmoved and disinterested. New age industrial doesn't butter my biscuits, it leaves em' cold.

December 13, 2008


Hey guys! You can now receive Lightning's Girl updates on Twitter. Add us!

Thanks, Anna, for bringing me into 2007. I hear Arcade Fire is gonna be huge.

December 12, 2008

Okay, I Am Done Feeling Sorry For Myself

So, in the words of Peggy Lee's song "Is That All There Is" (the video I posted last)

"We were so very much in love. Then one day he went away and I thought I'd die, but I didn't, and when I didn't I said to myself, "is that all there is to love?""

Yup. Life goes on and here I still am. Love or no love.

I am still DJing next week and I should remind you good people of this. It is next Thursday at Cous Cous (in RVA), Dec. 18th., from 10pm to 2am. It is FREE and I could use some love right now. Come visit me and lucky for you I will be playing some really fantastic records to make it extra worth your while.

December 8, 2008

Beyond My Control

Due to a truly awful occurrence in my life I don't have the energy to blog right now. I will be back eventually.

December 4, 2008

I dont feel like posting about metal today...I give you Mutators - Secret Life instead

Son of a gun. I thought I had my favorite records of 2008 all figures out and then this record rises to the surface of a pile of 12"ers in my living room that I have been meaning to get around to. I was cleaning up the apartment when I put the needle on side A but I stopped cleaning just a few seconds into the record. The music was too good, too distracting to do something as lame as sweeping up scattered cat litter. (Do I know how to party on a Thursday night or what?) I suddenly felt more inclined to kung fu bricks in half with my bare feet. You have to respect a record that literally is the audio equivalent of an adrenalin shot or 10 cups of coffee.

The Mutators sound like a band that would be in the opening slot of a Sonic Youth / Bikini Kill tour in the early 90s. In fact I am pretty sure that Thurston Moore wishes he put out this record. Secret Life is P. U. N. K. A. S. F. U. C. K. with a female vocalist who is a master of the perfect and ongoing scream.

Vancouver is lucky to have this band and Nominal Records - I owe you one for sending me this slab of noisy genius.

It even gets a Tobi Vail approval...and it is wicked limited (820 pressed) so don't snooze on this or you will be sorry. In fact I feel a little sorry for you right now because I have it and you probably don't.

Richard Edson

You might recall this guy from Ferris Beuller's, Stranger than Paradise, Platoon...the list goes on, but once upon a time (81-82) he was the drummer in Sonic Youth. I had forgotten about that until I pulled out the record today.

Something else I nearly spaced on, he also appears in an old Cave In video for the song Anchor.

December 3, 2008

The Loft / The Weather Prophets


The Loft was one of the early bands on Alan McGee's Creation label. The band started out as the Living Room in 1980, with singer/guitarist Peter Astor, drummer Dave Morgan, bassist Bill Prince, and lead guitarist Andy Strickland as members. Upon realizing that they shared their name with a venue run by McGee, the Television-inspired band changed their name to the Loft. After meeting up with the club owner, they began playing there regularly and wound up on his label. The single "Up the Hill and Down the Slope" won the group and the then-fledgling label a good amount of attention, winning the group a spot on The Oxford Road Show, a television program on BBC2; along with the Jesus & Mary Chain's debut single, it also upped Creation's profile during their early lean period.

While on a tour opening for the Colour Field, a major rift between the group grew extremely deep; there was the Morgan/Astor half and the Prince/Strickland half. Perhaps, not surprisingly, the former half was the second half to join upon the band's inception. Prior to a major show opening for the Colour Field at the Hammersmith Palais, Astor informed Prince over the phone of his wish to sack him and Strickland and continue with Morgan under the same name. After Prince told Strickland of the call, Strickland demanded that Astor be present for the gig. Astor showed; prior to the final song of the band's set, Strickland foiled the singer and told the packed crowd that the Loft would be no more after that show.

Almost immediately after the dramatic public split, Astor formed the Weather Prophets with Morgan (he also released solo records and formed the Wisdom of Harry later on). Strickland and Prince went on to play in a couple of minor bands and also continued working sporadically as music journalists; Strickland also ended up managing the Dotmusic website. Once Around the Fair, a compilation of the Loft's material, was issued posthumously by Creation

Discography is here and I personally heart the LP Once Around the Fair.

More rainy day Brit Pop, The Weather Prophets - "Almost Prayed". Note the awesome hair of the singer. Actually if I am going to be honest here, the lad is pretty easy on the eyes in general.

Hollow Heart:

December 2, 2008

Soooooo Disinterested...

That I don't even have the energy to write proper reviews of Ra Ra Riot or Japanese Motors.

Ra Ra Riot's The Rhumba Line kicks off with a stolen, okay maybe I should say borrowed riff from The Smiths song "Girlfriend in a Coma", by the second track they were copping a melody from The Clash's "Lost in the Supermarket" and it was right about there I stopped paying attention. I don't have any interest in a band who can't seem to right a riff of their own.

I made it through even less of Japanese Motors self titled release on Vice. The Heartbreakers, The Walkmen, Jonathan Richmond...again...nothing I haven't heard before and nothing I really LOVED in the first place.

Bahhh humbug. In fact I was apparently so disinterested I forgot to post this months ago.

This Black Tambourine video for Throw Aggie Off the Bridge will cheer me up.

November 30, 2008

Jean on Jean

The group Out Hud came and went without leaving as much as a blip on my radar but it is the solo record of their cellist / vocalist Molly Schnick that has me paying attention. She spent multiple years shaping this debut self titled record (Jean on Jean) and the final product is a dramatic string heavy twee album with vocals straight off a Tiger Trap record. But that isn't a fair comparison either because while she shares the breathy little girl vocal style, her vocal arrangements alone are complex and layered to the point dizzying. Clearly a ridiculous amount of care has gone into the making of this record. The songs are a bit like walking into a meticulous home where every single thing, in this case every note and every word is in its place and serves a meaningful purpose.

Cuddle core, sweater pop, twee-tastic goodness, I plan on spending my whole day with this Jean on Jean record. The Vivian Girls might be getting all the press these days but Molly Schnick has the talent of that whole band inside her.

There is a great interview with her here.

November 27, 2008

Friday Flashcard - My Metal Record of the Month

2008 has been the year for me to discover and obsess on black metal bands that don't fit neatly into the usual Burzum wannabe category. These more recent bands and often one man recording projects are much more experimental and Nahvalr's version sounds as if Lou Reed's Metal Machine Music was murdering MBV's Loveless in a cacophonous tribute to Euronymous.

In fact black metal over the past few years has become the only style of music I keep one eye on at all times just to follow what sort of wacky direction it will move towards next. It has become one of the few genres of music that seems actively willing to take dare devil risks and heavily experiment. We haven't seen rap or indie rock take that kind of leap into the creative unknown in I don't know how long. Forever?

You can stick as many name tags as you want on this S/T record: black metal, shoegaze, experimental noise, new age doom... but the point really is that Nahvalr have made a curiously brilliant one of a kind record built from the ground up by sound donations from others. These submissions were then sculpted by Dan Barrett and Tim Macuga (from the group Have a Nice Life) into a shimmering ear shattering record that will have you believing that the sounds of hell can be ghastly as well as gorgeous.
In fact if hell is as fantastic as this record sounds, you can count me in.
Note to self - send Dan and Tim some of my stuff so I can have in on whatever masterpiece they are Frankenstein stitching together now. My goal of taking dream doom to a new level of evil might just happen yet. A girl can dream....

November 26, 2008

A Newly Acquired 12"

I picked it up used from a friend. I forgot how great Swervedriver's Song of a Mustang Ford is.

This isn't really a video but you can hear the song at least.

Semi Super Group

Maybe if I had more free time to read music blogs I would have heard about this band sooner.

Magnetic Morning is Adam from Swervedriver with Sam from Interpol who have added Jimmy from Album Leaf. They sound exactly like you think they would.

Touring to a city near you.

Oct 15 2008
Caledonia Lounge
Athens, Georgia
Oct 16 2008
Local 506
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Oct 17 2008
Rock And Roll Hotel
Washington, Washington DC
Oct 18 2008
Johnny Brenda’s
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Oct 20 2008
Great Scott
Allston, Massachusetts
Oct 21 2008
South Paw
Brooklyn, New York
Oct 23 2008
Horseshoe Tavern
Toronto, Ontario
Oct 24 2008
The Grog Shop
Cleveland, Ohio
Oct 25 2008
The Catus Club
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Oct 26 2008
The Empty Bottle
Chicago, Illinois
Oct 27 2008
7th Street Entry
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Oct 30 2008
Chop Suey
Seattle, Washington
Oct 31 2008
Doug Fir Lounge
Portland, Oregon
Nov 2 2008
The Independent
San Fran., California
Nov 3 2008
The Roxy
L.A., California
Nov 4 2008
San Diego, California
Nov 7 2008
House Of Blues
Dallas, Texas
Nov 8 2008
Waterloo Park
Austin, Texas
Nov 10 2008
The Earl
Atlanta, Georgia

November 24, 2008


Another friend passed away this weekend and that was the first phone call of my day. At this point I am trying desperately to think of something that would cheer me up and I am coming up empty handed. If I could draw maybe I would depict something kittens riding unicorns over a field of cupcakes and rare records with pristine record covers and scratch free vinyl.

This is almost as good as any picture I could hope to paint plus any video that has a cameo of Bill Ryan - part owner of Pier Platters- is golden in my book. (door guy)

And to you Carl....I know you were more of a jazz guy...but you like the funny so maybe you would approve of this video in the spirit of the silly world of music you have left us behind in. Thanks for making me laugh and often.

November 23, 2008

Rock Bottom Riser

I've owned Smog records for as far back as I can remember. I used to think they were mine but I recently realized with the passing of a friend that I don't own these songs any more. I share them with the memory of him.

My last memory of Nathan is talking together after one of his live performances. It was the first and only time I saw him play and I couldn't wait to tell him how much I liked his songs and how much they reminded me of Smog. He seemed to light up like a house with all its lights on when I told this.

Now Smog and Nathan share a spot on the same shelf inside my heead. I think he would have really liked that.

November 21, 2008

Friday Flashcard: I Got Something Better For You

Buzzo might be the funniest man in metal ever. All American cool and classy.

There are so many links to the man on Fox news - it is actually a little scary. Fox News? Who knew?

All in the Family

The McCain at EMI Music... Yes, There's a Relation

Politics are notoriously thick in the music industry, even in deeply disruptive times. But recently-promoted EMI Music executive Sidney McCain carries more connections than most. McCain is a common last name, though Sid is actually the eldest daughter of the recently-defeated presidential contender. "If I ever have to have Secret Service... they'd better be ready for a lot of late nights," Sid told the New Yorker in December of 1999.

The Secret Service issue is now off the table, though the close relationship to John McCain could spell baggage among certain artists. Musicians mostly rallied behind Obama, and many - including, Common, and Nas - recorded songs to celebrate the Senator-turned-President-Elect. Others will undoubtedly react differently, especially given the extreme military sacrifices and public service record of McCain. Either way, Sid McCain now faces serious challenges of her own, particularly given the distressed position of EMI. On Wednesday, EMI named McCain to the post of Vice President of Label Services for North America.


November 20, 2008

Good Vibrations

It's Psychic TV doing the Monkees doing The Beach Boys.

November 19, 2008

Pretty & Nice / Get Young

Artist: Pretty & Nice
Title: Get Young
Hometown: Boston
Label: Hardly Art
Street Date: Out Now

RIYL: XTC, Punk with angles, Field Music, Eno, a young Paul Weller, Ted Leo on Nickelodeon
The Hits: Tora Tora Tora but the whole record is pop heaven.
Richter Magnitude Rating Scale: Strong

If you find yourself hungry for new music, something easy on the ears, then do yourself a favor and pick up Pretty & Nice's Get Young. They are a trio from Boston who make ridiculously good disjointed pop music on what sounds like toy instruments and have vocals that slide into a falsetto range that makes me wonder if they reached puberty yet.

I like this record to maybe even recreate the cover by leaping for joy.

November 18, 2008

This Is Not A Joke

This is a real obit from a local paper in Richmond. Thank you Mr. Bo Peep for passing it along to me. Don't get me wrong, I offer genuine condolences to his friends and family but you have to admit his name is pretty amazing.

Marijuana M. "Pimp" Thompson

THOMPSON, Marijuana M. "Pimp," departed this life November 6, 2008. He is survived by two children, Tajuan Martin and Tjuana Leatherwood of Tusca-loosa, Ala.; his mother, Mildred Thompson; father, Henry Polk of Jacksonville, Fla.; maternal grandmother, Theresa Turner; brother, Mario Polk of Jacksonville, Fla.; a host of aunts and uncles, cousins, other relatives and friends. Remains rest at Chiles Funeral Home, 2100 Fairmount Ave. Funeral services will be held on Thursday, 12 noon, at the United House of Prayer For All People, 926 Chimborozo Blvd. Apostle Anthony L. Taylor officiating. Interment Evergreen Cemetery. Remains will rest in church one hour prior to service.

Wilderness / (k)no(w)here

Artist: Wilderness
Title: (k)no(w)here
Hometown: Baltimore
Label: Jagjaguwar
Street Date: 11/4/2008

RIYL: Genius guitar playing, Lungfish, PIL, early Sonic Youth
The Hits: Own Anything, Chinese Whisperers
Richter Magnitude Rating Scale: Moderate

First off here is what separates this record from the previous two Wildnerness releases, taken from the Jajaguwar site:

Wilderness's third full-length album entitled "(k)no(w)here" was conceived as one musical piece, and the impetus for this composition came from an invitation to collaborate with renowned visual artist Charles Long at Long's exhibit at the Whitney Biennial in Spring of 2008. The eight identifiable parts of "(k)no(w)here" are not readily separated from each other, such is the flow from and into each part. Created in ways different than the previous Wilderness self-titled album (2005) and the Wilderness "Vessel States" album (2006), "(k)no(w)here" still retains the Wilderness sound, with some evolution. On the new album, James Johnson is sometimes joined vocally by Colin McCann (aka The Lord Dog Bird, whose self-titled debut was released by Jagjaguwar in the Summer of 2008). And, as on previous albums, McCann performs on guitar, Brian Gossman on bass, and William Goode on drums, but the resulting community of all these parts comes across as more dynamic, and the perceived space they inhabit seems more vast.

On paper it seems like the above information is important to know but if you had handed me this record and just said listen - don't do any homework in regards to the making of this record. My review would have been the same either way.

First of all Wilderness has maybe one of my top 10 guitar players of all time in the band. Colin McCann's metallic siren tone and choice of notes bring me to my knees every single time. Emotive, piercing, chilling...he draws the stinging outlines which the rest of the band colors in. Per the norm about 1/3 of each Wilderness record brings tears of joy to my eyes but then I can barely make it through the rest of the tracks, mostly because the unconventional speak /scream / often tuneless chants make my ears hurt but also because their songs can drag on like a hike through what is more tame than wild.

I guess when a band produces the kind of quality song writing that goes beyond most band's best work I end up excusing the Wilderness even though I cannot in fact listen to most of their records from front to back in one sitting. So how I am supposed to review a band I both love and am occasionally repelled by? To be honest I am not sure other than to say just that. I think by their next record I will be able to make a greatest hits of sorts that will rival some of the best records in my collection.

November 17, 2008

November 14, 2008

Friday Flashcard - Name that Metal Band

These three ladies from Japan don't have a crazy logo so instead I will show their video and you can guess who they are from this. (Two posts about all girl bands from Japan this week - heck yeah!)

Their name and the link to the MySpace page is in the comments section.

November 13, 2008

Flipside Part II

Thank you Gillamonster for this picture of me working at Flipside.
I am the ultimate billboard for the early 90's here: Das Damen shirt, army shorts, and a wall of tapes behind me.
I am guessing I was in my late teens when this picture was taken.
The records on the wall are the owner of Flipside's personal collection. They continued on the other side of the tape rack and it was a constant source of learning for me over the years.

The Creepers / Liquorice Flavour

The Creepers are exactly what one might expect from a member kicked out of The Fall (guitarist / keyboardist Mark Riley) for rumors that he was too melodic for the band. I also suspect from listening to the lyrics that his sense of humor may have been to flamboyant for Mr. Smith's taste.

Liquorice Flavour is The Creepers' final record (1987) and is arguably their best. While the instrumentation is absolutely more melodic and straight rock rock than his previous band, The Creepers vocals see saw between spoken word through what sounds like a telephone and flattened half melodies. There are Fall-esque moments to be found on this record but I can't help but be reminded of Sonic Youth minus the chaotic guitar acrobatics (add sax and accordion).

Last but not least there is a stellar Pretty Things cover of "Rosalyn" which is worth the price of admission alone. The Creepers are a weird combination of commercial and cool - Hoodoo Gurus meets the Television Personalities on steroids and there you have it, The Creepers and a great record from front to back.

The Creepers do Eno:

November 11, 2008


Amazing instrumental 3 piece girl group from Japan. Yummynoisygoodness.

November 10, 2008

Flipside Records : Pompton Lakes, NJ

Here it is. My home away from home. The place I worked at from 1988 to 1994. The record store that taught me more than any classroom could have about music history and the art of record collecting. This store changed my life (although for better or for worse I have yet to decide) and my obsession with music was kindled here. Owner Dan Dondiego is still a mentor to me as he knows more about music than any one man should.

Flipside Records is a legendary New Jersey record store that has a bounty of used records - the kind of records you just don't find anywhere else no less at a decent price. As you can see, it is sort of a free for all so it takes a little digging but it is always worth the trouble. There is always something ridiculously weird or cool to discover there although it may be hidden under scattered beer bottles or next to a zucchini in a birdcage.

I heart NJ but I love Flipside more.
120 Wanaque Ave
Pompton Lakes, NJ 07442

And don't bother looking them up on the internet. They don't do computers. This is a drive and see for yourself sorta adventure.

The carpet at Flipside is even out of this world.....

"Some Gal Smell Like The"

Bottom Of the Barrel by TIFA. You gotta love that the ladies of the Dancehall scene leave no topic untouched.....

I don't really know what a Kitty Police is but check out the Cat Woman sexy breakdown in the middle of the song. Meow.

Plexi Film Presents

Short Synopsis
WILD COMBINATION is director Matt Wolf’s visually absorbing portrait of the seminal avant-garde composer, singer-songwriter, cellist, and disco producer Arthur Russell. Before his untimely death from AIDS in 1992, Arthur prolifically created music that spanned both pop and the transcendent possibilities of abstract art. Now, over fifteen years since his passing, Arthur's work is finally finding its audience. Wolf incorporates rare archival footage and commentary from Arthur's family, friends, and closest collaborators—including Philip Glass and Allen Ginsberg—to tell this poignant and important story.

Jens Lekman cover's A. R.'s A Little Lost

November 6, 2008

Friday Flashcard - Name that Metal Band

What could be scarier than Satan?

Satan himself!!!

Ooops. I gave away the band's name. Oh well.

They are called Satan and I am pretty stoked that their simple band name has a complex logo.

These dudes are from Mexico and are face painting black metalers. My favorite part of their MySpace page is the super cute adopt a pet cartoon ad on the left side. Maybe this is why I am drawn to the band. They appeal to both my love of corpse paint and Hello Kitty.

Hush Hush

It feels like a long time since I heard much about what Joanna Newson is up to and my guess is we should see a record from her in 2009. It is difficult to say as she doesn't have a website of any kind that offers such updates. The Drag City site is pretty much useless and all the MySpace pages are fansites. This isn't really a complaint - I like the mystery of not knowing what and when I can expect something new from her.

When the weather gets cooler I tend crave hearing her songs so here is a clip from The First Unitarian Church Sanctuary - Philadelphia, PA, November 16th, 2006

November 5, 2008

Music To My Ears

I was in Washington, DC last night for the Deerhunter / Times New Viking show last night. The ride home through the streets of the city was perhaps one of the most incredible audio / visual experiences of my life. The show was great don't get me wrong but you can't really beat the country's capital creating a spontaneous party in the streets once the announcement had been made that Obama would be our next president. The whole city appeared to be screaming, honking, weeping, and dancing for joy. Bliss poured from every face. High-fives we being exchanged from car to car at stop lights, every car window was down, everyone talking to everyone about was a beautiful and happy this moment was not for just our country, but for the entire world.

The DC party in the streets.

November 3, 2008


Spacemen 3 : Walking With Jesus

Silver Jew

"Director Michael Tully’s documentary, Silver Jew, chronicles the three-day life-changing visit to Israel in the summer of 2006 of “born-again” Jew David Berman, front man for the band The Silver Jews.

Although the band had been together since 1992 and had recorded many albums in that period, it had never toured. But that changed with a European tour that Berman made sure included Israel where he discovered that he had many many fans he never knew about.

Silver Jew includes scenes from concerts in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in which the lyrics are often hard to understand in the din of nightclub noise. Intercut with these concerts are visits to Christian and Jewish holy places, as well as shots of everyday street scenes in those cities, giving a feel for ordinary life there. There also are scenes in which Berman rambles on and on philosophically about his feelings toward Judaism. This, for him, is a sort of rock tour pilgrimage in which he gets to connect to his roots. The emotional high point of Silver Jew comes when he recites a prayer handed to him on a flyer at the Wailing Wall and breaks down in tears."

I can only hope the movie is better than this preview.

Yma Sumac

From CNN and for all you lingering fans of the Exotica: Yma Sumac, the Peruvian-born soprano who wowed international audiences in the 1950s with her stunning vocal range and modern take on South American folk music, has died.

For those of you who are reading her name and thinking you don't know her, watch the video which has many of her record covers pictured. Surely you have seen her records in used bins...10"ers and 12 inches alike.

And I know, don't call you Surely.

Making a bad day better.

Listening to Neil Halstead always has a calming affect on me. My favorite song off his most recent album is called Paint a Face and here is a video for it.

Maybe it will help make your day a little better too.

The Lodger

All Music Guide is pretty spot on:

Influenced By
The Wedding Present
Orange Juice
Television Personalities
Talulah Gosh

Check out UK band The Lodger here.

October 30, 2008

Friday Flashcard: Halloween Special

Here is Helloween's Halloween video from 1987. You might be surprised to see that it takes place in a darkened forest by the light of the full moon. Only what's up with the girls that look more like extras from a Heart video or the Orson Welles look alike in a white dinner jacket with a pumpkin head. I guess that is kinda scary.

October 29, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me

Well the blog actually. We turn 1 today.

Here are some fun mod cartoons from the Hardy Boys. Groovy.

Rock & Rule

Rock & Rule (1983)

"They don’t get much stranger than this one. Canadian animation studio Nelvana and director Clive Smith began this 1983 project as a humorous family film called “Drats!,” but it somehow evolved into a post-apocalyptic tale of satanic magic and the rock and roll lifestyle among mutated, extremely anthropomorphic, cats, dogs, and rats -- with music by Cheap Trick, Lou Reed, Deborah Harry, Iggy Pop, Earth, Wind & Fire and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir (okay, we made the last one up). The film was plagued with endless problems, including (what even the film’s biggest fans admit is) a less than logical storyline, a lawsuit brought by Mick Jagger (the villain’s name: “Mok Swagger”) and the ongoing financial troubles of MGM, its disastrous first release was followed by a drastically recut, retitled version which, naturally, didn’t do any better. Just to add spice to the whole mess, the original negative was supposedly lost in a fire and the film appeared to be heading toward oblivion. Still, as is sometimes the way in the world of geek cinema, because of its animation (pretty terrific by the standards of the time) and the involvement of some of the most important figures in pop music history, the film has found a small cult following. “Rock & Rule” fans were rewarded for their patience in 2005 with a fully restored deluxe two-DVD boxed set with tons of extras. See, some post-apocalyptic tales of mutated, rock ‘n’ roll-playing cats and dogs do have happy endings. "

More info on WIKI

Lou Reed

Debbie Harry

Cheap Trick


Heartbreaking News

Shit. It hurts to post about the death of friend. Terrin Durfey, the vocalist / bass player of the California band Boilermaker recently passed away after a long battle with cancer. I was lucky enough to play a few shows / tour along side with the band in 1996 no less crash at Terin's home when our band had no place to sleep on tour.

Terrin was a ridiculously nice guy, I loved his music and well as his whole band. Many a Dahlia Seed tour was spent listening to their records in our van and I have both wonderful as well as comical memories of playing house shows with them.

My love goes out to Terrin's friends and family.

Va / Perfect Unpop: Peel Show Hits & Long - Lost Lo-Fi Favourites Vol. 1 1976-80

Artist- VA
Title - Perfect Unpop: Peel Show Hits & Long - Lost Lo-Fi Favourites Vol. 1 1976-80
Hometown - UK
Label - Cherry Red
Street Date- Out Now

RIYL - John Peel approved rockers
The Hits: About half as I see it, some of which you may own already, some I am certain you may have heard but don't actually own, and then a handful of great unknowns.
Richter Magnitude Rating Scale - Strong

"I'm a fat chap who likes playing playing records."

Oh John Peel how we miss you so and what a great little quote to include in the liner notes to this compilation. While I am certain the title of this CD pretty much explains the premise of the collection I would like to toss in a few other notable quotes from the CD booklet as to why I think so many of us have a love for John Peel and why the spirit of this comp is so fantastic.

"For the most part, Peel played pop from his own parallel universe, where major-label sales and showbiz demands counted for nothing. The show was all about the thrill of the new, the infectious optimism of DIY, and the chance of coming across a diamond in the rough that would last a lifetime. Above all, Peel was a champion of the underdog, whose natural gift - to us all - was to judge the noisy poetry of teenagers, apparent dreamers and outsiders on the same scale as the giants."


The liner notes go on to say:

"The idea here was never to try to mimic a typical 80 minute chunk of the Peel show which was ephemeral by nature - a mix of intimacy and observation, interspersed with music that couldn't have possibly come from a wider spectrum....Meanwhile I hope the unearthing of these unpop gems and playlist Nuggets might recreate something of the atmosphere of the Peel Show for his under-cover legions."

I no longer have to dream what a sampling of Peels show in its prime may have sounded like. Here it is spread out over 80 minutes of what isn't perfection in the traditional sense of a greatest hits but I think that is exactly the point of this marvelous collection. Besides a healthy list of familiar favorites (The Vibrators, Young Marble Giants, Kleenex, Mo-dettes, Swell Maps...) there are more singles I wasn't familiar with (Tours, The Out, The Wasps, The Carpettes). It isn't just another 77 punk comp or a C86 valentine, this stays true to the title's promise and is in fact a little sampling of everything from the late 70s that mostly flew under the radar but Peel placed a spotlight to.

The liner notes also includes small articles on every record / artist featured on the CD and if there was anything to complain about all I can say is I wish this was magazine sized with a CD attached to the cover. The CD booklet is really that good and deserves something a little more special than just playing the roll of another comp CD that will probably get lost in the various artist section of your local record store.

October 28, 2008

Karaoke Cabs Hit The Streets

Taken from Billboard: I can't think of two things I hate more, cab rides and karaoke, and now they are rolled into one ugly combo. That God it's only temporary and not in a city near me.

By Kamau High, N.Y.

Starting in November consumer electronics brand Memorex is going to be outfitting cabs in San Francisco and Chicago with karaoke systems and encouraging people who get into the cabs to sing in exchange for a free ride, Billboard has learned.It's part of an advertising campaign by Colorado based ad agency TDA Advertising & Design to promote Memorex's SingStand, a full sized microphone, stand and speakers that allows users to sing along with music. There will be six cabs in high foot traffic areas of the cities, each of them wrapped in an ad for SingStand.People who agree to sing for their spin will be filmed and clips of the footage will be uploaded to, a site that will not be live until next week. Memorex, which is owned by Imation, is not the first company to encourage off-key singing in a moving vehicle. Kansas City, Kan., has, while Dallas has a Karaoke Yellow Cab.In December the campaign will come to New York. While the song list is still being finalized it will include holiday perennials such as "White Christmas," said Deborah Hernandez, marking communications manager, Memorex.

October 27, 2008


This past weekend Coheed And Cambria finished the first part of an epic undertaking. For those unfamiliar with the bands history, there is a storyline running through all four of their albums. Singer/guitarist Claudio Sanchez is the author of a series of Sci-Fi themed graphic novels, and Coheed and Cambria's albums follow the same storyline as the books. Their latest release, No World For Tomorrow, is the final chapter in the saga. With the storyline being complete the band decided that it would serve the loyal fans well to be able to see the entire catalog preformed live. Yes, every song, from every album, in order!! Recently many bands have been preforming entire albums on tour but I have yet to hear of anyone else doing four complete records. This was obviously a massive undertaking. When it was all put together it turned out to be FIFTY songs, played over four nights, for a total of six hours. This is a feat that demands respect. All four shows sold out NYC's Terminal 5 very quickly and die hard fans were able to get four day passes before the other tickets went on sale. The band is now doing what has become known as 'The Neverender' in Chicago, then they are off to repeat the performances in Los Angles and London. The amount of rehearsal, and the level of dedication required for this undertaking is remarkable and their fans honor and respect the effort.

On night four in NYC the band was joined onstage for their encore by guitar legend Warren Haynes of the Allman Brothers Band/Government Mule. They played the Bob Dylan classic 'I shall be released', followed by Warren joining the band on one of their better known songs 'Welcome Home'. Here is a video of the blazing guitar solos from that song:

And yes, I am laying claim to the new terminology for music with a running storyline:



Psychic TV / Godstar

Quite a nice little pop song.

We will call this the before footage of Genesis. (1988)

And here is the after:

October 24, 2008

Friday Flashcard - Name that Metal Band

BETWEEN TWO WORLDS - in stores November 3, 2006

This band is a Bergen, Norway "supergroup" featuring members of Immortal, Gorgoroth, Sahg, and Enslaved but to my ears are not nearly as good as any of those other bands. I feel like these kinds of bands are never as good at the bands thee members come from. Can someone name a supergroup that is actually as good or better than the bands they stem from?

I also can't wait for you to check out these band's MySpace page. They must be sponsored by a leather company.

(The name of the band is in the comments section)

October 23, 2008

Le Garage Reminder

Hooray! I not only have a brand new DJ night called "Le Garage"at a new location but I am also fortunate enough to have a DJ partner in crime this time around so no more 4 hours straight for this little lady.

And hi-five to my friend Daniel for working some major flyer magic in a matter of 24 hours.

This is happening next Thursday so I will re-post this again as a reminder mid next week.

October 22, 2008

Drugs are Bad but Mental Illness Might be Worse

The combination of the two has created some damn fine records from Dan Treacy but there is a sad life story in its wake. Apparently there is a Television Personalities documentary- I had no clue it existed until now. This seemed to tie in nicely with the post about Teenage Filmstars yesterday.

Here are three of the four sections (the 4th one has been pulled from YouTube)

Consider yourself warned - this is the exact opposite of a pick me up.

Teenage Filmstars / Star

Artist - Teenage Filmstars
Title - Star
Hometown - UK
Label - Artpop! / Cherry Red
Street Date- Out Now

RIYL : What is an artist still riding the MBV wave. Ca-ching!
The Hits - Inner Space, A Dream with a Dream, Love is Blue
Richter Magnitude Rating Scale - Moderate

I can't wait until My Bloody Valentine puts out the new record shoegaze fans have been waiting for since the early 90s so the press and everyone else can go on with their lives. Thanks to this never ending renewed interest in shoegaze and now shitgaze I really can't take any more MBV talk or reissues of bands using quotes from MBV members to hype the "relevance" of their release.

Wanna be hipsters might try and tell you this reissue of the 1992 'Lift Off Mit Der Teenage Filmstars' is better than anything by MBV but this is just their elitist cranky way of trying to make you feel like you should know this group when in all honesty, Teenage Filmstars should be more like a footnote to the pysch-drone with buried vocals movement.

Don't believe the hype.

On Star you will find looped layered fuzzy songs that are frustratingly repetitive and drag on for too long. Every song is a little too busy for my taste - as if Teenage Fanclub is wailing out guitar solos over Loveless as performed by T Rex. Most every song is over stuffed, beaten to death and drowned in reverb. Rather than layer after layer working together to form a gorgeous heavy blanket of noise they compete and fight scream like cats in heat.

If you really want to pull some old band out of the hat that deserves more attention I will forever sing the praises of The Swirlies. And no I don't like them because not as many people seem to know about them, I loved them more than any other shoegaze band back then and still do now.

The most exciting thing about TF for me is that main member of the group Edward Ball was not only an executive at Creation Records but was also a founding member of the Television Personalities who played on the first three classic TP records.

And Don't the Kids Just Love It (1981, Rough Trade)
Mummy Your Not Watching Me (1982, Whaam!)
They Could Have Been Bigger Than the Beatles (1982, Whaam!)

There is also a brand new reissue of Ed's other band The Times which you can read about here. This band was Ed's post TP project and as you might expect, there are hints of TP minus the crazy.

Ed recently revived his old label Artpop! (which is quite a nice name for the genre he romps around in) and it is Cherry Red who has taken it under their wing and given it proper distribution world wide.

This is the video for "Kiss Me" by Teenage Filmstars.

And here is a video for The Swirlies' "Bell" :

October 20, 2008

Meneguar / The In Hour

Artist - Meneguar
Title - The In Hour
Hometown -NYC?
Label - Woodsist
Street Date - Out Now

RIYL - Danielson Family, Sebadoh, Pavement, GBV, Awesomeness
The Hits - Everything but "Oakland, NJ" which makes me sad since I am a Jersey girl and all
Richter Magnitude Rating Scale - Strong

I am crazy about this record in a mid 90's classic indie rock sort of way. Listen to these songs and tell me the don't rule.

Fucked Up / Vivian Girls : R+R Hotel, DC

Last night I headed to DC to see Fucked Up, Vivan Girls, and Cloak Dagger. I hadn't been to the venue before so first I would like to note that the signs from 395 N to get into the part of town suck. There was lots of last minute WOAH that is our exit quick lane shifts which I am sure had it not been a quiet Sunday night on the road would have equated to total driving hell.

For those of you from Richmond was it was a hometown surprise to park a block away from the club and realize you are in front of the new Sticky Rice location. So that's where it is!

I unfortunately missed most of Cloak Dagger so it wouldn't be fair to review their portion of the show.

While I like the Vivian Girls on record, live I continue to be left not unimpressed but not exactly wowed either. The songs are great but their stage presence is a flat line experience.

"So we played on the radio today"
Other band member: "What?"
Repeated: "We played on the radio today"
Other band member: Oh yeah, we played on the radio today."

At another point people in the crowd were noisy between songs and one of the VGs overheard a girl call a friend next to her a dickhead which she then seemed stoked on - enough to comment on from stage. So yeah, even the band themselves seemed to notice the audience was giving a more captivating show than they were. Anyhow, a new song was played which sounded darn good (more Sonic Youth than Shangri-las) and my favorite of the night was their Beach Boys cover of "Girl Don't Tell Me".

Fucked Up played mostly material from the new record on Matador and while I like the new record for the craziest mix of Poison Idea vocals meets the most epic massive non sounding hardcore music ever, I wasn't really feeling their live show. It isn't to say they weren't good but after a really long week for me (and the band....see below) it seemed like we all weren't at our best. I know I felt tired but wanted to make the effort to be at the show - it seemed like the band was on the same page.

Here are some links to their 12 hour show in NYC on 10/14. Guest appearances all day included Moby doing all Ramones songs with the band, Jon from the Cro-Mags, J Mascis, singer guy from Vampire Weekend, Tim from Les Savy Fav, Matt Sweeney...the list goes on.

The Long Blondes Break Up

This is sad news. Does it feel even sadder that I found out via Myspace?

I wish I had seen them when I had the chance now. Here's a video for their breakthrough song, "Giddy Stratospheres":

Massive Attack - Teardrop

Not that I have a voice who could have ever done this kind of complex melody justice but this is one of those songs I wish I had written. Here is a video for Teardrop by Massive Attack, crazy to think this is a decade old.

October 16, 2008

Heavy Metal Burgers : A different kind of Friday metal flashcard.

My kinda town....Chicago is.....

Kuma's Corner

The Burger Menu:

PANTERA BURGER 10oz. burger served with Roasted Pablano Pepper, Bacon, Cheddar Cheese and Monetary Jack Cheese Ranchero Sauce and Tortilla Strips

FUMANCHU BURGER 10oz. burger served with Grilled Japanese Eggplant, Teriyaki sauce, Wasabi Mayo, Frizzled Daikon Radish

“OUR FAMOUS KUMA BURGER” Bacon, Cheddar, Fried Egg

KAIJO Bacon, Bleu Cheese, Frizzled Onions

BLACK SABBATH Blackening Spice, Chili, Pepper Jack, Red Onion

YOB Smoked Gouda, Bacon, Roasted Red Peppers, Roasted Garlic Mayo

IRON MAIDEN Avocado, Cherry Peppers, Pepper Jack, Chipotle Mayo

SLAYER Pile of fries topped with a ½ lb. Burger, Chili, Cherry Peppers, Andouille, Onions, Jack Cheese, and Anger

NEUROSIS Cheddar, Swiss, Sautéed Mushrooms, Caramelized Onions, Horseradish Mayo

METALLICA Buffalo Sauce, Bacon, Bleu Cheese Dressing

MELVINS Fresh Basil, Prosciutto, Mozzarella, Tomato, Onion

CLUTCH Cheddar, Swiss, Jack, Smoked Gouda

MASTODON BBQ Sauce, Cheddar, Bacon, Frizzled Onions

LED ZEPPELIN Pulled Pork, Bacon, Cheddar, Pickles

JUDAS PRIEST Bacon, Bleu Cheese Dressing with Apples, Walnuts, and dried cranberries

MOTORHEAD Goat Cheese, Kalamata Olives, Oregano, Tzatziki, Onion, Tomato

MAYHEM Sliced Jalapenos, Pancetta, Pepper Jack, Gardinera Mayo

DARK THRONE Chipotle Peppers, Goat Cheese, Fresh Pico de Gallo

GOBLIN COCK Bacon, Cheddar Cheese, ¼lb. Vienna Hot Dog, Tomatoes, Onion, Neon Green Relish, Sport Peppers, Pickles, Celery Salt Mustard

MINSK Pastrami, Swiss Cheese, Sauerkraut, Brown Mustard

FU MANCHU Grilled Japanese Eggplant, Teriyaki sauce, Wasabi Mayo, Frizzled Daikon Radish

PLAGUE BRINGER Roasted Garlic Mayo, Tortilla Strips, Chicago CO-OP hot sauce, Fresh Garlic, Pepper Jack, Sliced Jalapenos

HIGH ON FIRE Siracha Hot Chili Sauce, Prosciutto, Roasted Red Pepper, Grilled Pineapple, Sweet Chili Paste

LAIR OF THE MINOTAUR Caramelized Onions, Pancetta, Brie, Bourbon Soaked Pears 12

October 15, 2008

Bop and Bowl

Hey gang,

A last minute thing. I will be DJing this Saturday in one of 40 Duck Pin Bowling Alley's left in existence! Not sure exactly what all I will playing but I am thinking favorite rock / indie rock records from the past 30 years. (Replacements, Husker Du, The Saints, The Fall, Mission Of Burma, XTC, Social Unrest, REM, ...and who knows what else I will dust off the shelf) Mr Cam D will be diving DJ duties for the night so it will be double your pleasure.

Everything at Plaza Bowl is remarkably cheap (from bowling to beer to eats) so if you are looking for something cool, different, affordable, and that is a wicked good time...this should be your jam.

10/18 (this Saturday)


Plaza Bowl
523 E. Southside Plaza
Richmond, VA 23224
(804) 233-8799
Get Directions Here

How Many of These Groups Do You Know?

This is taken from SoundScan's Alternative New Artist Chart from this morning. Ummm, I only 4 out of 10. I don't know if that means I am old and out of touch or mature enough to know better.


October 14, 2008

Ascend / Ample Fire Within

Artist: Ascend
Title: Ample Fire Within
Hometown: LA, CA

Label: Southern Lord
Street Date: Out now
RIYL: Beards!

The Hits: V O G, Dark Matter
Magnitude Rating Scale: Major

Beards! Beards with guitars! Beards who used to be on Revelation Records (Engine Kid / Iceburn), tour together back in the day, loved jazz and then alienated their hardcore kid following by moving their bands in noisy avante directions that kids couldn't mosh to.

In fact I remember playing on a bill with both bands in Long Island in the mid 90s and watching the crowd freeze, blink multiple times as if they were vaguely making an effort to digest the noise coming off the stage and eventually walk out the door because clearly Coltrane and or Earth hadn't met theirs quite yet. Who knew Greg Anderson and Gentry Densley were so ahead of the curve? Who could have guessed a band like Sunno))) was just a decade away?

I'm not sure Jazzoom is a real genre but it crossbreeds Jazz and Doom in a way that produces what one might expect from these gentlemen with musical history. Think heavy. Think Melvins taking on Sun Ra. Think really good ...if you like drone dry humping Miles Davis.