Thursday, March 30, 2006

Misery Is The Thing With Feathers

Did you ever get a CD because you heard it weeks ago while listening to WFMU while at work? And, because you were drowning in piles of stressful ulcer-inducing uncompleted projects, this song somehow injected you with a fresh new sense of purpose? And then some days later you get home with the CD and the song you remembered hearing (in this case, Symphony of Treble by Blonde Redhead) revealed itself as just so-so? And then you listen to the rest of the album and it holds your interest even less than the song you initially desired? And earlier that week, a friend had lent you The Orphan's Lament by Huun-Huur-Tu but you avoided listening to it because you feared it would be a little too All Music Considered topped with a smudge of Paste? But then it was time to return the cd to your friend so you finally listened to tracks such as Aa-shuu Dekei-oo? And by the time you got to the last song, Ödugen Taiga, it made you weep because it reminded you of the ending of The Story Of The Weeping Camel where the camel weeps? And both songs so totally ruled that you vowed to never again acquire CDs by any band who would name their latest release Misery Is A Butterfly? Sister, I can totally relate.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Time, Time, Time Is On My Mind

Did you ever get allergies so bad you had to drink a little Nyquil Cold & Flu Medicine just so you could get a good night's sleep? And then the kick-ass alcohol content made you good and drunk? And then your dreams twisted the day's events into one another? And earlier that evening you had watched disc one of The Tomorrow Show with Tom Snyder wherein a young Elvis Costello peddles his forthcoming single from his then-brand-new 1981 LP Trust? And your brain, soaked in medicine-liquor, somehow tumbles facts so that, when you wake up all hungover, there is a Costello song playing over and over in your head as you rub the crust from your eyes? But the song isn't anything from the afore mentioned album and is, instead, Man Out Of Time, the centerpiece of his 1982 masterwork Imperial Bedroom? Yeah, that happens to me all the time, too.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Bad Things Come In Twos

When it rains, it pours. Let's all bow our heads in silent memory of Buck Owens and Nikki Sudden, both of whom died over the weekend. If you're clueless enough to only know of Owens as the co-star of Hee Haw, I hate your guts. Listen to Before You Go and Getting Used To Loving You and get back to me when you've paid proper respects to the King God of Righteous American Honky Tonk. If you have no idea who Sudden was, I'm going to remove your neck with a salad fork. Listen to Midget Submarines and Vertical Slum and get back to me when you've tossed all your WB Network-related indie rock blather into the garbage where it belongs. PS: Whoever borrowed my Buck Owens boxed set some years ago and never returned it, please bring it back.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Roll With It

Let's Roll is the kind of sample-infused creation Dickie Goodman would have concocted were he still alive. And harboring a severe case of 9/11 Denial. The Oakland, California provocateurs Porest have been associated with more than a few CDs over the years which have challenged the American politico status quo, but this particular track might just finally get them sent off to Guantanamo for good.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Acronym of L.O.V.E.

It seems somewhat misplaced to title your I'm-head-over-heels-in-love song after the (admittedly brilliant but) troubled soul of choreographer Bob Fosse. Stranger, still: spelling it as an acronym (B.O.B. F.O.S.S.E.) Being that I openly admit to having had a perverse fixation surrounding All That Jazz throughout my high school years, there is more than a little excitement in my loins when I hear Black Lipstick tack Fosse's name onto such euphoric subject matter. Maybe Fosse's estate will see an upswing in revenue as a result of this indirect product placement. Take note, Ann Reinking: the proceeds from your brief appearance in Mad Hot Ballroom won't last forever.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Spirit Is Willing But The Flush Is Weak

When my Moms died, oh, five years back or so, my eldest sister and I had a few discussions about what happens when you die. My take: end of story. Her take: the spirit lives on and protects its loved ones forever and ever, Amen. Personally, I don't need anyone watching over me like that: my morning bowel movement is first and foremost about privacy. Why not do something useful such as, say, stealing for me from my favorite record store? Or perhaps give George Bush a little shove the next time he's leaning over the precipice of the Grand Canyon? I only mention this because the cover of Second Guessing by Oakley Hall somewhat resembles some sort of dead owl spirit face or something. If that's you, Mother, why have you come back as a fair-to-middling Alt-Country outfit from New York writing tepid run-throughs such as Hiway and Color The Shade? Is there No Depression in heaven and, if so, can I get a one-way ticket to hell instead?

Sunday, March 19, 2006

The Girl With The Elephant Strap

The mixed gender guitar/drum duo is soooo 1999. And sorry to be the one to say this, but man lipstick and striped tights doesn't make you Kurt Weill. The only twosome catching my interest (be they brother/sister or not) is Deadboy & The Elephantmen, if only because they retreat into softer, quieter corners (on tracks such as No Rainbow, Dressed In Smoke and Walking Stick) where even Exene Cervenka and John Doe were too afraid to hide. Even better, when they finally do decide to rock out (Kissed By Lightening), it's as if they're setting their big hairy balls to music. (Yes, I'm well aware one of the members is a female--that's why God invented strap-on testicles.)

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Frosted Flakey Goodness

I'm getting very nervous. Normally by this time every year, I've already discovered dozens of new (and not so new) acts whose music makes my receding hairline stand on end. But so far, 2006 has left me wanting--there isn't a single band at the moment about whom I'm urinating in glee. Where are all the good new bands for us to obsess over? After such a non-stop ride in 2005, is there something in the water supply keeping worthwhile bands from forming? Please don't tell me to name check The Arctic Monkeys and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah! because I have, and...well...yawn. So far, my favorite discovery of 2006 is a result of my newly-formed illicit love affair with speed/death/thrash metal: pop lovers, I give you Detsorgsekalf (which may or may not be "Frosted Flakes" backwards, but with a "G" instead of an "F"), and their new album Tr00 Grim Warriors Ov The Necrokkvlt. If there is a more ridiculous, over-the-top and hilarious metal band to watch in 2006, buy it.

Friday, March 17, 2006

A Whiter Shade Of Gringo

In what is probably the Whitest of all the tracks on The Spanish Trip--a collection of psych rock numbers from 60's/70's-era Spain--the tot in Café Con Leche singing The Land Of Light maintains an upbeat Michael Jackson-style utopian funk pop sound, even when he's nearly buried alive underneath 10 tons of production theatrics. I was lucky enough to find my copy of this album in Austin, TX earlier this week, but you can find your copy at Forced Exposure.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

No More Pauses, No More Grinding Halt

My time spent at the 2006 South By Southwest (or, as the locals call it, Crap By Southcrap) has yielded the following stats:

Number of Celebrities I Spotted: 3 (Comedian-who-makes-me-laugh Brian Posehn, Filmmaker-who-makes-me-cringe John Sayles and Film-Reviewer-to-whom-I-am-fairly-indifferent Harry Knowles, who was being pushed around in a wheelchair)

Number of Celebrities Spotted By My Intern: 1 (Cherlize Theron, attending as Producer of Cuban rap documentary East Of Havana and looking, I'm told, her usual beyond-gorgeous self.)

Number of Celebrities Attracting A Horde Of Local News Crews But Whom I Lucked Out In Missing: 1 (the-Tim-Allenesque-and-just-as-insufferable Ray Romano, showing his new--and probably equally insufferable--new documentary 95 Miles To Go.)

Number of Semi-Celebrities Spotted Whom I Had No Fear Of Approaching, Even Going So Far As To Getting My Picture Taken With Them: 1 (Jeff Krulik, director of Heavy Metal Parking Lot.)

Number of Films I Saw Which, On The Surface, Somewhat Resembled Me And You And Everyone We Know But Which, Unlike That Film, Didn't Make Me Want To Lock The Theatre Doors, Set The Building On Fire And Stab The Writer/Director In Her Precious Performance Art/Fart Eyeballs With A Ball-Point Pen: 1 (Apart From That, which also had the coolest promotional T-shirts of the whole festival.)

2nd Coolest Promotional T-Shirts Of The Whole Festival: Spout (for this free plug, maybe someone will send me the cool matching jacket, too.)

Number Of Trade Show Attendees Who Could Not Pronounce The Name Of The City In Which I Live: 3

Number Of Trade Show Attendees Who Gave Me Their Resumes In The Hopes That The City In Which I Live Paid Wages High Enough To Motivate A Relocation: 2

Number Of Man Ponytails Spotted, Thus Signalling The Official Return Of This Most Dreaded Of Hairstyles: 9

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Another Pause, Another Grinding Halt

It's bad enough I've been blatantly shirking my posting duties, now you won't see any n-line musings for the next six days while my glamorous job flys me to the SXSW Film Festival, held in good old Austin, TX, whose automobile population holds the largest concentration of anti-Bush bumper stickers I've ever seen in one place. If you happen to be attending, you'll almost certainly find me most of the time at booth I-13 of the film festival trade show, so do drop by and pretend you're interested in what I'm selling. Or just hang around Waterloo Records and look for the guy running through the racks muttering album titles to himself in a crazed effort to fill in those missing gaps in his CD collection. You'll also be able to spot me at Magnolia Cafe, attempting to consume those gigantic gingerbread-banana pancakes in one bite.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Hot Child In The Citay

Bret B., close personal friend at Post-Punk Junk, don't be a hater for what I am about to spew: Citay, a new side-project of Ezra Feinberg (Piano Magic) and Tim Green (The Fucking Champs) is everything I violently despise made manifest--harmonic multi-tracked guitar solos with pompous overdramtic rock flourishes a la Queen, cribbing from Heart rather than Led Zeppelin, lyrics which are probably about, fuck, I don't know, leprechauns and wood sprites and moon goddesses or whatever the fuck, all of it graced with flutes and mandolin, etc--and yet, despite these traits, I like them. Correction, I love them. You heard me, Bret. I'm all about the L Word. Won't you hold my hand and skip into the thick of the forest with me while we sing along to Nice Cuffs? If any of you love pixie nymphs as much as I do, you'll gladly purchase this self-titled cd for yourself at Important Records.