Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Mankato's Finest

Back to the States for today.

Minnesota to be precise.

It's the Gestures!

Run Run Run (1964)

Released at the start of the so called British Invasion only much better than most of the crap flooding our shores from across the pond.
The Gestures hailed from Minneapolis suburb Mankato.

This wasn't some lame rehashed watered down British Invasion shit

If you listen to the music and musicianship underneath you can hear a solid underpinning of good old US Prime A Surf in all of it.

And these kids can play. It's tight as fuck and all American,baby

And the songs, Dale Menten (guitar, vocal) originals, are polished and performed perfectly.

I'll take this over just about anything contemporary to it.

Don't Mess Around (1965)

And then they do it again. "Don't Mess Around" is pure fucking genius. There's so much that happens in two minutes and twenty seconds. That bass line. The syncopation. Those guitar tones. All of it.

I love this tune.

B-side is another sweet 1-4-5 stomper.

Four sides of pure wonder.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Fedoras all around

Here we are with Gentle Despite on Sarah Records

The Darkest Blue (1990)

Let's see. Quiet introspective songs about girls with jangling guitars and wispy vocals? Check.

The eternal whinging forsaken love call of the beta male? Check.

 Sarah Records? Check.
After listening to limp wristed stuff like this I find it difficult to imagine that there was a time that the English were capable of an empire encompassing half the planet.

I mean, I'm pretty sure that even I could have beaten these guys up for their lunch money.

Torment to Me (1991)

But lo! The title track here has some balls. A bit of distortion! Are they having a breakthrough?

And then it's over and we're back to the friend zone with "Bittersweet Kiss".

On the plus side, "Shadow of a Girl" appears to trying pretty hard to be an Only Ones outtake. It just needs more heroin addiction to succeed.

And thus began and ended the recorded existence of Gentle Despite in 6 songs.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Make Your Own Richard Gere Joke

But now that I think about it, I'd probably have to explain that reference to anybody under the age of 45, so what's the point really ?

Glue (1997)

The Gerbils were one of the bands that appeared on the Elephant 6 recording co. roster in approximately the middle part of the 90's.  Scott Spillane, John D'Azzo and Will Westbrook were the band with Spillane also doing duty in Neutral Milk Hotel.

Looking this shit up on a Neutral Milk Hotel gigography, I see that I saw them perform on the 24th of April in the year 1998 opening up the night at the 400 Bar in Minneapolis to be followed by Elf Power and the fucking be all of Neutral Milk Hotel shows that I witnessed for an "In an Aeroplane Over the Sea" tour.

 I'd even forgotten that Elf Power played. NMH were just so amazing that particular night.

But the Gerbils were good enough as I remember that I got these two singles at some point. (Maybe at least one that night. I know that I got my NMH t-shirt that night)

Granted at that point, NMH weren't quite at the same level of revered as they became after Jeff Mangum dropped out of sight for a long while. The they were just another Elephant 6 band with a new and really good record that none of the hip kids wanted to hear about because they were too cool for that shit.
Elf Power had a couple more albums to their name but the Gerbils were the new kids with only a handful of singles. I suppose that's why they opened. 

So here they are. It was really quite nice to listen to these again. It's the magic of the Tascam Porta-One distilled and dispensed at 45 revolutions per minute.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

Fear of Pop Music Volume One (1993)

This is completely unrelated to the Ben Folds release of 1998. That was simply his blatant attempt to cash in on the runaway success of this beloved album.

They should have sued.

There was no Volume Two.

A2–The Molecules  I Hate Your Life
A3–Thinking Fellers Union Local 282  Hurricane (Live At Afterworld Lounge, Oakland)
A4 –Din Tryptich 9 Shooter
A5 –Some Velvet Sidewalk Old Bridges/Snow (Live At International Opo Underground Festival, Olympia)
A6–Nonwhites All Skin Is Temporary
B1 –Screenbred I Heard God Today
B2 –Pansy Division Femme In A Black Leather Jacket
B3 –Fibulator Levity
B4 –Caroliner Let's Trade Twitchets
B5 –Glitter Doll Noise God
B6 –Allegory Chapel Ltd. Salvage Post Purgatory Cadavers

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

I don't really understand the hype

It's raw. it's primitive. It's poorly recorded.

It's Punk Rock.

Forming (1977)

I personally don't quite understand the fascination with this band other than Darby Crash's untimely death/suicide. He secured his legend, even if he timed it pretty poorly since Lennon got shot the next day and kind of overshadowed everything.

They were early and influenced a lot of people and the whole nine yards....but...

I don't know. I listen to the tracks I've got. I listen to "What We Do is Secret" and it's all kind of meh to me.

Whatever. More Germs for the rest of you, I suppose.

But I got this a long long time ago anyway and I've kept it.

According to Discogs it's a 2nd press.

[b]2nd pressing:[/b] What Records / US (The Germs* - Forming)
- Vinyl: Black
- Labels: Black print on white background, 45 rpm on the left
- Sleeve: Picture sleeve with a one dollar offer on the back (identical to the 1st)
- Insert: Identical to the "once more you morons" insert from the 1st pressing

The otherwise unidentified b-side is a live version of "Sexboy"


Storm Trooper in Drag (1981)

An oddity to be sure. It's a "solo" single by original Tubeway Army bassist, Paul Gardiner.

Mr Gary Numan makes an appearance and it sounds for all the world more or less like an outtake by his former band. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing, but it's all just kind of uncomfortable in a lot of ways.

Enjoy too?

Sunday, May 7, 2017

And yet more again

The torment continues with more Geezer Lake

Songs from the Watering Hole (1994)

Listen if you're interested.
I put it here because I consider it so.
Your mileage will vary with your worthiness.
Be worthy.

If you like reading,
 by which I'll assume you're not American,
then I Heart Noise has words or something referring to them.

 I wouldn't know. I only work here.

Split w/ Drunken Boat (1994)

Besides the fab Geezer Lake track, Drunken Boat have a song entitled "Shitboy".

Need I say more?

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Round about where I was borned

So yeah, Geezer Lake....

Field Blister (1991)

From the land of my physical birth, Greensboro, North Carolina and a mere hop, skip and drunk from the wilds of Chapel Hill came and went Geezer Lake.

They no longer exist like so many nice things.

Liberated Woman (1992)

Concisely put description on one page says:

"...Maximum Rock N Roll (of all places) may have described their sound best: "1 part Jesus Lizard, 1 part Alice Donut, 1 part Black Sabbath, 1 part Charles Mingus, 1 part Black Flag, 1 part Butthole Surfers; add alcohol and LSD. Stir." I'm not sure that we could really say it any better...."

Neither can I.

Use thoughtfully.