Sunday, January 30, 2011

I love that Eddie House is doing the Cerrano every time he hits a big shot!

If you've never seen "Major League 2," this is the explanation for the Cerrano:

And for crap's sake, watch the movie - it's classic!

Posted via email from Stephen Feller

The car battery died so Brynn's tried to move it Tebow-style.

The girls decided to go for drive after E-House hit that clutch three-pointer.

Me First & The Gimme Gimmes - All Out Of Love

All Out Of Love by Me First And The Gimme Gimmes  
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02 All Out Of Love.mp3 (6859 KB)

I hate Air Supply. I'd rather listen to the Eagles. Or Rod Stewart. That said, the Gimmes have done something great here. Something really, really great.

For the uninitiated, Me First and The Gimme Gimmes are members of several punk bands who get together every other year, record a bunch of covers and then go on tour, partying and rocking the hell out of every city they stop in. They've even played a Bar Mitzvah and managed to be decent enough that they got a live record out of it.

So the new seven-inch is five tracks by Australian artists. It's got stuff from INXS and Olivia Newton-John and, obviously, this Air Supply track. Good times.

Pre-order the new Me First and the Gimme Gimmes album from Fat Wreck Chords.
Buy other Me First albums from Fat Wreck Chords too. Believe me, they're worth the cash. It's not like you've never heard the songs anyway.

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Unwritten Law - CPK

Cpk by Unwritten Law  
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01 CPK.mp3 (3772 KB)

Unwritten Law just posted the first single, "Starships and Apocalypse," from their new album, Swan, on the their MySpace page. It's not bad, but it doesn't excite me the way "Superman," the first single from Oz Factor, their 1996 major label debut captivated me for months until the rest of the album came out. And yes, I realize that is a completely unfair comparison.

One of my first great finds in the "nobody wants it" collection in Studio B at WKPX is UL's 1994 full length debut, Blue Room, rereleased in 1995 after they signed to Epic. I can remember listening to the album over and over, it was fast and dissatisfied - the ideal punk record I was on the constant search for. I even excused lead singer Scott Russo for being too wasted to sing any words audibly when the band opened for Bad Religion and Dance Hall Crashers the next year in Fort Lauderdale.

Angsty about parents, girls, politics, people. From "CPK," what a way to start a record, to the heartfelt "Suzanne" to "Obsession," "Shallow" and "World War 3," UL was on it.

The band chose Bad Religion's Greg Graffin to produce it's second album, Oz Factor, which had the same feel and sound but much, much better production value because it was recorded at Graffin's own studio in Ithaca, New York. Whether it had the sound Epic wanted or not, Oz Factor, and solid tracks including "Superman," "Falling Down," "Tell Me Why," and a couple of rerecorded tracks from Blue Room turned UL into Warped Tour superstars.

From there to MTV success, the band changed a few members and changed their sound a bit. No shame, it just wasn't what I was feeling. I got progressively more bored listening to the albums that led up to their major breakthrough. On an urge, I've spent the last few days listening to almost nothing but Blue Room and Oz Factor, and somehow I think I'd enjoy those later ones a lot more. 

Either way, those first two records stand up pretty well for anybody that was into skate punk in the mid-90s though.

Buy Unwritten Law's Oz Factor at Shockhound.
Blue Room is out of print. If I find somewhere to download it, I'll update the post. Man is that piss poor and disappointing.

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pink Noise Test - I Can't Stand It

I Can't Stand It by Pink Noise Test  
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07 I Can't Stand It.mp3 (6379 KB)

Pink Noise Test was an L.A. four-piece that put out a couple of EPs and got signed in the golden era of alterna-experimentation - the mid-90s. The first I heard of them was "I Can't Stand It," a beautifully feedback-drenched, Weezer- and Jesus and Mary Chain-ripping slab of Velvet Underground coverness. They even put out a video for "All The Same To Me," with I'm sure got absolutely no airplay on MTV despite the fact that the label should have bought it onto the Buzz Bin.

It was glorious. And then the band disappeared because they didn't sell any records and Interscope had no time for them. It doesn't mean I don't listen to their one full length, Plasticized, at least once a month. The album, as a whole, is really solid. Now that I think about it, there's no way they could have topped it so it's probably better that they were one and done.

While Plasticized is out of print, here's a nice download of the Electric Train EP, which came out just before the full length.

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Baby Fox - Jonny Lipshake

Jonny Lipshake by Baby Fox  
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01 Jonny Lipshake.mp3 (6886 KB)

I had a request this week for a few dub selections. I haven't had a chance to put together a playlist, but I nearly jumped out of my chair at work (in appropriate slow motion) when this track from the first Baby Fox album, A Normal Family, popped on the mp3Tunes shuffle.

This isn't one of the tracks that blended well with trip-hop in the mid-90s, like my first exposure to Baby Fox, "Alienway," with its pitch-perfect, moving vocals. This is smoked out dub. This is the contact high. The one you put on at three in the morning and nod your head to until you can't hold it up any more. The fan favorite, of course, is their version of the Lee "Scratch" Perry track "Curlylocks." But I didn't go with that one because it's already the fan favorite, so why bother?

More importantly, this is the track you dig after you, either, already dig dub music in general, or have already listen to the record so many times that it's part of the trip you're looking for. And you'll know pretty quickly if it works for you cause this is the first track on the album. The riches lie beyond it, but this slice of slit-eyed tapping is the price of entry.

I say that because I've had a lot of people tell me they hate Baby Fox. Those people are wrong. They may be the ones who got the group to bring in a bunch of drum'n'bass for the second album (which was just as good as this one), but they're wrong and don't deserve to listen to be in the presence of this Baby Fox or anything on A Normal Family

Download A Normal Family. (It's out of print, hence the no "buy here" link... So I took care of the research for ya'll. You're welcome.)

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Bronx - I Got Chills

I Got Chills by The Bronx  
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06 I Got Chills.mp3 (3278 KB)

What I like the most about The Bronx is that they refuse to name their albums anything but "The Bronx." Each of the albums has been subtly different than the one before it, Mariachi El Bronx notwithstanding, though none has been good as the first. That's less an indictment than it is an opinion.

The first album, released in 2003, rips and shreds. Produced by Guns N Roses second rhythm guitarist Gilby Clarke, The Bronx is rough in the way that only a debut album can be: reckless abandon.

They'll never be as good as they were in 2003, but hopefully they'll make another real album after they're done with the mariachi thing.

Buy music from The Bronx at the White Drugs website (that's their label, not just some random schmucks selling mp3s and CDs).

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Boom Chick - When I Don't Love My Rock and Roll

When I Don't Love My Rock N' Roll by Boom Chick  
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08-When-I-Dont-Love-My-Rock-N-Roll.mp3 (3727 KB)

Moselle Spiller and Frank Hoier are a garage rock duo. The easy comparison is to The White Stripes, because they're a chick and dude, kicking ass with some bluesy punky rock and roll. Really, you could compare them to just about anybody on Alive Records, a label filled with bands that worship at the feet of blues and 50's era rock and roll.

What's nice about Boom Chick, aside from the great name, is that they've rocking as hard as the afore- and overly-mentioned Stripes, but to me they've got some of the spirit of Death From Above 1979 only they've left the abrasiveness behind. (That abrasiveness was wonderful when DFA1979 was at their best but it would totally be overkill here.)

Magnet Magazine named their debut album, Show Pony, one of the "Hidden Treasures of 2010" and there's simply no way to argue that it was hidden - though there's a good explanation for that. Boom Chick self-released their debut at the end of November, after recording it to actual tape last May. Self-release! Actual tape! Until they uploaded it to the Internet for sale, it was almost 1997 for a second.

Right now, they've got four shows scheduled for 2011, two in New York and two in North Carolina. With any luck for the rest of the country, Boom Chick is about to sign to the right indie label (Sub Pop or Anti- would make A LOT of sense) and spread the love to the rest of the states.

Buy Show Pony from Boom Chick themselves or click over to iTunes. (It costs the same either way.)

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I can't believe this is a Mcdonald's.

I stopped for wi-fi and luxury shocking luxury. Good job grease kings!

Posted via email from Stephen Feller

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Maybe the Dolphins should bring the winningest coach in NFL history back into the fold.

You know, his opinion was pretty good for about 30 years or so. I feel like it might help a little.

Posted via email from Stephen Feller

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My new neighbor at work has this hanging over her desk. I plan to point to it before every stream of obscenities I let loose at my desk.

Cake - "Easy To Crash"

Easy To Crash by Cake  
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Cake - 08 - Easy To Crash.mp3 (6563 KB)

By the time Showroom of Compassion is released next week, it will have been seven years since Cake released an album with 2004's Pressure Chief. It turns out that is the perfect amount of time for this band to have disappeared.

After hitting the big time with the buzz hit "The Distance" on 1996's Fashion Nugget, these boys from Sacramento churned out three more albums that were each solid. Nothing mind-blowing, no great leaps forward in style or sound - they were solid, enjoyable, toe-tapping, and sarcastic. That's what people wanted, and that's what we got.

Fast forward to, you know, now, and what we want is another album from Cake. Sure, the band sounds a little different. Some extra keyboard here, and little more country in places there, but basically, Showroom of Compassion sounds exactly like what I would expect from a new Cake album.

I noticed "Easy To Crash" on my second tour through the Showroom. It sounds, to me, who has never seen Cake in concert, like a crowd pleaser. Drum fills and yelling, stopping and starting at all the right places. This is Cake at it's groovy best, even if the lyrics don't exactly sound the happiest.

Buy Cake's other albums at Cake.

Posted via email from One Stupid Mop

Monday, January 3, 2011

Finally posting my "favorite albums of 2010" list. Unlike most, I waited for 2010 to actually, you know, end.

I was going to do a Top 11. Instead, I made a list of the albums that stayed in rotation on some level all year and ended up with 22. No, this isn’t every great album of 2010. It is, however, the ones I liked the most and will likely continue listening to deep into 2011.

When I looked over the list, none of it seemed all that obscure but, really, nobody listens to only obscure albums all the time. They might want you to think they do but trust me, they don’t.

It seemed weird to me that I start and finish this list with a Springsteen reference but it happened naturally. Maybe I should have an actual Bruuuuuuuuuce stage this year. Eh, we’ll see what happens.

2010 was a good year for music. Here’s to 2011.

Arcade Fire - The Suburbs

The best album of the year. Above all the music, and if you can’t dig the music you won’t dig the album, it has feeling. I don’t know if every man would be into this if radio were as powerful as it was when Springsteen hit but I do know that The Arcade Fire was speaking to the same everyman in 2010.
Driving punk rock with lyrics about the uncomfortability of life. It doesn’t get better than this.
A lot of people hate Kanye. A lot more people love him. Some can’t decide which. Regardless, this album was brilliant, from the early free versions of tracks that ‘Ye posted on Twitter to the final versions on the album. Nobody takes himself more seriously or more seriously takes a look at himself than this guy.
The two-man blues band from Akron caught fire in 2010. Some of us knew this would happen way back in 2002 when we bought The Big Come Up on vinyl on a whim.
I thought I was sick of Eminem after his mediocre comeback, Relapse. It turns out, that was just the colonic he needed to get to the real comeback. Marshall Mathers put out his best album since The Marshall Mathers LP. Finally.
The first album I loved in 2010, Surfer Blood’s debut stuck around all year. It’s all fuzz and television and strange feelings and makes me want to sit and study it on head phones and blaring out of the stereo and speeding down the side street. I hope their second album doesn’t suck.
Dueling male-female vocals over alternating plugged-in punk and bitter acoustic tunes. I couldn’t resist this album if I was dead.
Hands down, the best band in America. The Roots put out another great album in 2010, despite the fact that it should have come out in 2009. This is where hip hop meets rock and kicks everybody in the face.
This could have come out in the wave of trip-hop that followed the success of Portishead, Tricky and even Morcheeba. A head-nodding trip of an album that stood up all year long.
I was ready for this album after an early year phase of listening to nothing but No Age’s discography - previous full length and all the EPs and 7-inch’s. This had more groove and less noise, which was the obvious product of maturity and growth, and lived up to every promise the L.A. band has so far offered the sonic youth that love them.
The most inescapable album of the year because it sounds like nothing else with its loud guitars and over-modulated, sampled drums. Blow the headphones? Why thank you! This is another band whose second album I hope doesn’t suck.
Sometimes you want to sit around with bong hits and snark, and sometimes you want to get drunk and dance. Jaill is the booze and moves to Surfer Blood’s stoned snark.
I had to offer one sentimental choice here. In the midst of their 30-year celebration, the guys who saved punk in the late 80s have continued to age gracefully. Just don’t call them old.
Tom Gabel has no reason to apologize because his band still kicks ass and his songs are still about whatever he’s thinking.
It’s hard to believe that Ted Leo needed a comeback album. The Brutalist Bricks is bitter, hard and just right for the times. If nothing else, Leo makes me want to work harder to get there.
There’s really nothing remarkable about this album except for the fact that it’s yet another perfect album from Spoon in their seemingly endless streak.
Tricky hasn’t put out a completely bad album. Ever since Pre-Millenium Tension hit huge and he split with his muse, Martina Topley-Bird, Adrian Thaws has tried all sorts of different things, swapping vocalists both famous and not in and out. Martina’s not back, but Thaws has found his mojo again.
UNKLE gets far less press these days. They deserve a lot more. Where Did The Night Fall was only loved by the hardcore and the nostalgic but the package, and I mean everything the music to the actual, physical packaging that held it, was brilliantly put together.
More proof that record labels are way past their usefulness, several companies made it tough for this one to come out, so it hit the net Yankee Hotel Foxtrot-style and the indie underground fell in love. A real release changed nothing.
Nick Cave is a dirty old man. The dirty old man has a great new band, and on their second album, Grinderman made everybody feel dirty. And they liked it.
A beautiful voice singing some sad and often dark songs. “Fuck You” was the single of the year though and this album is worth a lot of listens. Plus, in the absense of a new Gnarls Barkley album, Cee Lo solo is way more than good enough.
These guys still sound like a punk rock Bruce Springsteen, at least partially because lead singer actually sounds like The Boss. Like The Arcade Fire, Gaslight is singing about everyman stuff and every man loves them for it too.