Category Archives: pictures

Album Review: ALBUM!

Artist: Girls
Title: Album
Year: 2009
Label: True Panther Sounds

1) Lust For Life- 10: This song makes me, how should I say, a little crazy, totally mad, and perhaps fucked in the head lol. I remember when Glen first showed me this, it was one of those instantaneous pop hooks. You just want to jump up and start dancing and singing along even, if you’re 100% straight: “I wish I had a boyfriend, I wish I had a loving man in my life,’ are some of the finer lines. Singer, Christopher Owens does a great job with the lead vocals, but I really adore the doo da doo da backing vocals mixed with clapping and a groovin’ bass line. It’s a classic.

2) Laura- 9.4- Wearing it’s 50s-60s pop rock influence as Needle Dropper, Anthony Fantano cited; in this track the Girls boys (haha!) are bundled up in a catchy love number for the one and only Laura.

3) Ghostmouth- 9.7- Another classic, lonely love number, which seems to be a recurring theme in this LP. Owens likes the bad boys, but he has a girl, and “nothing compares to you.” Well, guy, girl, whoever “you” is referring to is causing our hero to go bananas, riding on a ghost train, hoping to reach Heaven If he arrives there, he can chill with my ears cause this is a killer track. Cheesy, I know lol.

4) Goddman- 9.1- Not as good as the previous tracks, but still exceptional. It clearly demonstrates the group’s ability to switch up their sound; here we have some fine bongo tapping.

5) Big Bad Mean Motherfucker- 9.2- Ahh, good old rock n roller. 50s greaser anthem. Reminds me of some of the songs off the Grease Soundtrack and specifically I’m getting a David Bowie Ziggy Stardust era feel.

6) Hellhole Ratrace- 9.9- I often play this song two, sometimes three times in a row. It’s just too exquisite for one listen. Simply, one of those tunes, you never want to end, and I often garner that feeling from a brief number, but this track is one second shy of seven minutes, so kudos to Girls! Very chill, sharp departure from Big Bad, which makes the album that much more fantastic.

7) Headache- 9.4- I love the low, soulful vocals here, which offer everything, but a headache! Lyrically, it’s pretty simple, but it works perfectly: “I only want to be with you all the taahhimee.”

8) Summertime- 9.5- High vocals, akin to the earlier track “Lust For Life.” It’s too damn bad that we’re in the dead of Winter, since this song obviously reminds me of the Summer and even when we reach that time of the year it just fucking rains! Anyway, enough for seasonal rants for now.

9) Lauren Marie- 9.6- Epic, to say the least. Great percussion, fabulous Elvis/Bowie like vocals, and simple guitar strumming. If I was Lauren Marie, I’d feel honored.

10) Curls- 9.6- For some reason, the guitar riff is etched in my brain. Echoes (no pun intended) to Darkside era Pink Floyd.

11) Darling- 9.4- Nice little closer. It’s not as far out there as some of the other tracks, so in other words it brings our melted brains back to the surface. This track also shares a memorable guitar riff.

Overall: For such comically generic LP/Band names, these guys (lol)are anything but; based on this debut, Girls have a promising future and are amongst my new favorite artists.

Chris

My Top Albums of the Decade

Just flipping through the latest issue of Rolling Stone (I rarely read the mag) and taking a gander at their bests of the decade lists, I can’t get over the massive discrepancies in our’s and their’s. RS overwhelmingly favors mostly mainstream/major label acts and a few independent acts with some degree of commercials success. So of course, our homeboys (Black Lips, Jay, King Khan, No Age, etc.) are virtually nonexistent because they’re not big enough! Wow, what a terrifically horrendous way to evaluate music… Anyway, case in point, their top 50 albums of the decade barely included 1/5 of independent music, whereas our lists are the complete opposite. Anyway, here’s their list: http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/31248017/100_best_albums_of_the_decade/44 and here’s mine, the better one :)

1) Black Lips- Los Valientes Del Mundo Nuevo (2007, Vice)

2) Jay Reatard- Matador Singles ’08 (2008, Matador)

3) The King Khan & BBQ Show- What’s For Dinner? (2006, In the Red)

4) Jay Reatard- Blood Visions (2006, In The Red)

5) Jay Reatard- Singles ’06-’07 (2008, In the Red)

6) Bright Eyes- I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning (2005, Saddle Creek)

7) The King Khan & BBQ Show- The King Khan & BBQ Show (2004, Goner)

8) Animal Collective- Strawberry Jam (2007, Domino)

9) No Age- Nouns (2008, Sub Pop)

10) King Khan & The Shrines- The Supreme Genius of King Khan & The Shrines (2008, Vice)

11) Arcade Fire- Neon Bible (2007, Merge)

12) Black Lips- 200 Million Thousand (2009, Vice)

13) Page France- Hello, Dear Wind (2005, Suicide Squeeze)

14) Box Elders- Alice and Friends (2009, Goner)

15) The Pains of Being Pure At Heart- The Pains of Being Pure At Heart (Slumberland Records, 2009)

16) Against Me!- Reinventing Axl Rose (2002, No Idea)

17) Girls- Album (2009, True Panther Sounds)

18) The Nightwatchman- One Man Revolution (2007, Epic)

19) Glassjaw- Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Silence (Roadrunner, 2000)

20) Mark Sultan- The Sultanic Verses (2007, In the Red)

21) Arctic Monkeys- Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not (2006, Domino)

22) Kimya Dawson- Remember That I love You (2006, K)

23) Black Lips- Good, Bad, Not Evil (2007, Vice)

24) The Almighty Defenders- The Almighty Defenders (2009, Vice)

25) The King Khan & BBQ Show- Invisible Girl (2009, In the Red)

26) System of A Down- Mesmerize/ Hypnotize ( 2005, American)

27) Deerhunter- Rainwater Cassette Exchange EP (2009, Kranky)

28) Head Automatica- Decadence (2004, Warner Brothers)

29) Deftones- White Pony (2000, Maverick)

30) System of A Down- Toxicity (2001, American)

31) Mabuses- Mabused (2007, Magpie)

32) Glassjaw- Worship and Tribute (2002, Warner Brothers)

33) Against Me!- As the Eternal Cowboy (2003, Fat Wreck Cords)

34) Black Lips- Black Lips (2003, Bomp!)

35) Black Lips- We Did Not Know the Spirit Made the Flowers Grow (2004, Bomp!)

36) Animal Collective- Feels (2005, Fat Cat)

37) Sonic Youth- The Eternal (2009, Matador)

38) Animal Collective- Merriweather Post Pavilion (2009, Domino)

39) Fugazi- The Argument (2001, Dischord)

40) Those Darlins- Those Darlins (2009, Oh Wow Dang)

41) The Strange Boys and Girls Club (2009, In the Red)

42) The Used- The Used (2001, Reprise)

43) Arctic Monkeys- Humbug (2009, Domino, Warner Brothers, EMI)

44) Editors- The Back Room (2005, Kitchenware, Fader)

45) Shellac- 1000 Hurts (2000, Touch And Go)

I’m leaving 5 slots open for possible last minute acceptances.

Chris

Abbie Hoffman v. Jerry Rubin

Jerry on the left and Abbie on the right. Both men were Revolutionary Yippies! in the 1960s, but who is cooler?

Hoffman was funnier
Rubin was zanier
Hoffman wrote more books including the incendiary Steal This Book
Rubin’s Do iT! is the best Yippie! book and far more colorful (plenty of pics, many displaying nude babes), wacky, and radical than any of Abbie’s, though his contain similar elements.
Hoffman staged more pranks: Throwing money over the New York Stock Exchange, levitating the Pentagon
Rubin was arguably more militant or “freakier.” He considered Charles Manson an inspiration and even chatted with him for hours in prison.
Hoffman was a member of SNCC in his early days
Rubin was active in the Free Speech Movement in his early days, though he made some Civil Rights protests as well
Hoffman wore an inverted Amerikan flag on his shirt
Rubin wore the Viet Cong (he spelled it Kong) flag on his shirt
Hoffman heard Castro speak
Rubin personally met him (if I’m not mistaken)
Hoffman has several biographies of him and including his own as well as an entertaining biopic called Steal This Movie
Rubin once stormed the halls of Congress half nude, dressed up in American Revolutionary attire, complete with war paint and ammunition, albeit a toy gun!
Hoffman along with Jefferson Airplane singer, Grace Slick once attempted to slip a hit of LSD into president Nixon’s coffee, but they never made it inside the White House
Rubin became a yuppie when the war ended: stockbroker, businessman,etc.
Hoffman was forced underground and became an environmentalist, when he rose above ground he continued his activism with the War On Drugs, and the CIAs sadistic, murderous involvement in Latin America as major targets

Well, I could go on and on here. Basically, both men were heroic and should be revered for their tactics, ideals, and for making revolution fun. So, who wins?……………

Abbie! because he never sold out and more importantly because of his unique form of media manipulation, which ultimately led to social change and gave people some laughs (or the jitters!).

Here’s some history in motion; this is Abbie right before the Chicago Democratic National Convention protests which culminated in him and seven others (including Rubin) being tried and convicted (though the decision was eventually reversed) for conspiracy to incite riots at the Convention:

And here’s just a classic Jerry Rubin moment:

Chris

I’m Just As Repulsed As You… chuckles

I saw an advertisement for Volvo cars that utilizes classical conditioning to excite customers about their products. The ad conditions its viewers to get “excited” when they see Volvo cars like they get “excited” for sex. Specifically, the ad features a parking brake in its upward position to resemble an erect penis, this is accompanied by the caption, “We Are Just As Excited As You Are.” The marketers are aiming at the 16-40 year old male demographic. They hope guys will learn to associate the company’s automobiles with horniness, so they will go out and buy them. Fuckers… why they can’t just associate horniess with big black boots like fine, upstanding, citizens.

Chris