29 August 2012

BUDDY JUDGE Profiles in Clownhenge 1998

 
 by request
 

review

[+] by Jason Damas
Possibly one of the strangest -- and most interesting -- guitar pop albums of the late 1990s, Buddy Judge's first solo project (titled, in full Mister Spalding's Orchestral Devices Proudly Perform Buddy Judge's Full-Length Musical Compendium "Profiles in Clownhenge") sounds almost nothing like his previous work with the Grays. As one of the three frontmen in that project, Judge's songs blended seamlessly with those of Jason Falkner and Jon Brion, and despite some adventurous flourishes, the song writing on that album was fairly conventional guitar pop fare. On this album, however, Judge gets pretty weird: the concept is that the music is inspired by a late 19th century Boston bookkeeper named Mr. Spalding, who created an orchestra of mechanical animal musicians run on steam power. Mr. Spalding was a bit of a recluse who died when the orchestral device's main boiler exploded, also destroying all of his devices. This album is recorded in that particular style -- sounding a bit like a circus gone mad -- making it possibly one of the only tuba-based pop records in memory. What's surprising is that even with the inherent weirdness, Profiles in Clownhenge is still basically a pop album, just with tuba taking the prominent role generally taken by a guitar. So that means that songs like the infectious "Everybody Loves Bob" and a very literal cover of "Send in the Clowns" aren't too weird to scare pop fans away, but are plenty different enough to establish this as a truly creatively unmatched project. (There are four bonus tracks tacked on after the main section of the album. Those songs are more traditional guitar-based numbers that won't surprise fans of Judge's other work.)
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28 August 2012

DADA El Subliminoso 1996

by request

biography

by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
With their clean pop sound, catchy melodies, and clever lyrics, some journalists labeled Dada the Police of the '90s, although the trio wasn't as musically adventurous as that group. Nevertheless, the band's debut record, 1992's Puzzle, was an updated version of the polished guitar pop that the Police pioneered in the early '80s. On the strength of the single "Dizz Knee Land," the group earned a fair amount of press and sold a number of records. When they delivered their second album, American Highway Flower, in 1994, Dada wasn't able to capitalize on the promise of their debut and the record slipped off the charts soon after its release. 1996's El Subliminoso met a similar fate; their self-titled fourth LP followed two years later.

27 August 2012

THOSE BASTARD SOULS Twentieth Century Chemical 1996

by request


review

[+] by Ned Raggett
The cryptic packaging and liner notes make Those Bastard Souls seem like a more complete band than they were at the time -- Dave Shouse is nowhere mentioned by name within, while the artwork is somewhere between an Impulse! CD reissue and garage/psych imagery. Shouse apparently recorded everything on the road, possibly with unnamed assistance; six separate studios in Europe and the U.S. are listed. Those familiar with the Grifters' blend of styles won't be too surprised by Shouse's way of working, but Those Bastard Souls have a different and distinct way around combinations. Shouse is as comfortable with crisply recorded and performed straight-up, bluesy garage rock ("These Things Will Slay You Every Time," with what can only be described as barrelhouse harpsichord) as with more off-kilter approaches. The snaky "Remembering Sophie Rhodes" is one of Chemical's best, the organ and driving feel seeming like a bit of classic rock liberated and made to live again. "Dirty Looks" blends the two sides well, with both an in-your-face delivery and string and keyboard touches floating around the steadily paced recording. The amusingly titled "! #*@#*! (I'm Takin' Off)" lets Shouse get his ya-yas out with force, thanks to the quick, bass-heavy rhythm and rock-out soloing. "Subterranean Death Ride Blues, Pt. 2" is a striking number, a piano and drum-led track with a queasy production quality -- there's something almost late Beatles about it without suggesting a full cloning. If there is any sort of Liverpudlian connection throughout Chemical, it's in Shouse's vocals, generally treated with a bit of echo and distortion, with a breathy, raspy quality that is both familiar and not easily pinned down -- a bit Lennon and Paul Westerberg all at once. If Guided by Voices had already claimed part of this sonic intersection for themselves, Shouse provides his own rootsier interpretation of such influence-blending, with great success.
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25 August 2012

RUTH RUTH Laughing Gallery 1995

by request



biography

by John Bush
The punk-pop trio Ruth Ruth came together in 1994, initially playing gigs for free at New York City's Continental nightclub. Their occasional shows became a residency and by the following year, vocalist/bassist Chris Kennedy, guitarist Mike Lustig, and drummer Dave Snyder had signed a record deal with American Recordings. Debut album Laughing Gallery, produced by Ted Nicely (Fugazi, Girls Against Boys), was released in October 1995 and followed by the EP Little Death in 1996. Jumping to RCA, Ruth Ruth resurfaced in 1998 with Are You My Friend?

 

24 August 2012

FOIL Spread it All Around 1998

 by request

biography

by Steve Huey
Foil are a guitar-pop band from West Lothian, Scotland (near Edinburgh); their original lineup featured vocalist/guitarist Hugh Duggie, guitarist Colin McInally, bassist Shug Anderson, and drummer Jim Anderson. The group played its first gig at London's Underworld in February 1996 and were immediately signed by 13th Hour, releasing the single "Reviver Gene" in July; however, the song did not really receive much airplay until its re-release in November 1997. The group's debut album, Spread It All Around, was released in England in January 1998, appearing domestically two months later; in addition to Foil's debut single, it also contained "Don't Come Around" and "Are You Enemy?" Drummer Alan Lindlay has since replaced Anderson. In mid-2000, Foil issued Never Get Hip.

ANOTHER SOCIETY One Last Step 1995

by request

biography

by Tom Demalon
Hailing from Southaven, Mississippi, the rock quartetAnother Society formed in early 1993, led by lead singer Luke John,who was still in his teens. With guitarists Jason "Huck" Huckabyand Jim Koester, bass player Brad Grubbs, and drummer Daryl Stephens, the young band quickly gained a local following and by mid-1994 had inked a deal with upstart label PC! Music Company. Influenced heavily by bands like Queensryche and Metallica, as well as Nirvana, they recorded their debut One Last Step,which was released in 1995. A solid effort, One Last Step earned good reviews and a smattering of airplay, although much of the attention focused on their cover of Nirvana's "School." A second release, Blood Wrong, followed in 1997, after which the band underwent some line-up changes, adding guitarist Clint Reed, bassist Ed Louis, and drummer Dan Lapansee.

DOUGHBOYS





Home Again
1989
Turn Me On
1996

By request


biography

by John Bush
Signed to Pipeline Records only six months after forming in 1986, the Doughboys released Whatever one year later. After three subsequent albums (1988's Home Again, 1990's Happy Accidents and 1992's Something's Gone Wrong), the band signed with A&M and released Crush in 1993. The Doughboys' original lineup consisted of bassist John Bonhead, guitarist Johnathon Cummins, vocalist/guitarist John Kastner and drummer Brock Pytel, but Peter Arsenault later replaced Bonhead and Paul Newman took over for Pytel. In 1998 the band split up, and two bands emerged as a result: Bionic and All Systems Go!



23 August 2012

EDISON Picture Postcard 1997

 by request

biography

by Jason Ankeny
The alternative rock quartet Edison formed in Altoona, Pennsylvania in 1992. Comprised of vocalist/guitarist Ryan Tyler, guitarist Shawn Shultz, bassist Chris McConnell and drummer T.J. Lipple, the group honed its muscular sound on the Altoona club circuit before graduating to Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and eventually New York; during a performance at CBGB's, the band came to the attention of Kinetic Records founder Steve Lau, who signed Edison to the label a short time later. After cutting a pair of singles in the fall of 1996 with producer Wharton Tiers, the band teamed with Jawbox's J. Robbins to record their 1997 full-length debut Picture Postcard.

19 August 2012

BONE CELLAR Now That It's All Over 1994

By request
 

Tracklist

1 Old Paint 2:58
2 Dysfunction 2:49
3 Just Go 2:52
4 Stupid Things 2:54
5 The Flowers Dry 2:24
6 Cynical Bastard 3:34
7 The Luv In My Heart 6:20
8 Squeaking My Board On Crack 2:48
9 Dryrot 4:04
10 Track Marks 3:08
11 Support The World 2:34
12 Pass Me Another Beer, I Think I'll Drink Myself To Death Tonight 1:49
13 Wasted Time 4:16
14 Crashing Down 2:37
15 Sacred Cash Cow 4:44
16 Out Of Mind (Hidden Track) 7:45
 

18 August 2012

SAND RUBIES self titled 1993

By request

biography

[+] by Linda Seida
The Sand Rubies evolved from an Arizona group called the Sidewinders, an outfit that had already put out three albums with Rich Hopkins on guitar and David Slutes as vocalist. The name change came about because of legal difficulties, but they went on to ink a deal with Mammoth Records in 1988. A showcase followed in New York, resulting in a deal with RCA. Due to little promotional backing from RCA, the Sand Rubies moved on to Ensign/Chrysalis during the early 1990s. Unfortunately, when EMI took over Chrysalis, the band was left out in the cold. Soon the Sand Rubies again had a new deal, this time with Atlas/PolyGram. At one time, Pearl Jam was the band's opening act. But the frustrations of continually having to find a new label tested band members resolve and resulted in tempers that were sometimes short. Infighting between Hopkins and Slutes led to even shakier times in 1993, and band members went their own ways. Three years later the two feuding musicians seemed to have buried the hatchet and they reunited with drummer Bruce Halper and bass player Mark Perrodin. Hopkins also has a solo career.
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15 August 2012

KLEENEX GIRL WONDER Sexual Harassment 1996

Thanks to S. for the up!

biography

by Tracy Frey
Graham Smith has gained a reputation in the Chicago indie scene for his staunch DIY ethic and his band Kleenex Girl Wonder's short lo-fi pop songs. Smith single-handedly writes, records, and performs all the band's material, with other band members occasionally turning up for live shows. It all began in 1996 when Smith was in high school in suburban Downers Grove, Ill. During his senior year, he put out the band's first two CDs, Sexual Harrassment and Graham Smith is the Coolest Person Alive. The band immediately garnered attention for both Smith's age and the band's similarity to Guided By Voices with its brief unfinished-sounding songs.
 

14 August 2012

A.C. ACOUSTICS Able Treasury 1994


 From Discogs:
Critically acclaimed Scottish indie rock band from Glasgow, formed in 1990.
Arguably now a spent force, ac acoustics briefly flirted with a breakthrough in the mid-late 1990s. They were widely championed by the music press and by peers such as Placebo.

At their peak they combined dense, fuzz-heavy riffage with cryptic, poetic lyrics, before later introducing keyboards and moving into a sparser, more repetition-based direction. Initially, they owed a debt to the Jesus And Mary Chain, The - blending furious white-noise with early Pavement-style experimentation and augmenting their two guitar, bass and drums instrumentation with saxophones and violins.

SUPER 5 THOR Gazelle 1997

Tracklist

1 Blue Eyes 3:01
2 Lincoln 3:25
3 November 72 3:49
4 Nothin' 3:40
5 Century Girl 3:14
6 Blown Away 3:26
7 Alive 2:53
8 Lisa 3:40
9 Gazelle 3:20
10 Down 3:04
11 Receiver 3:06
12 Ultreen 5:20
13 Want You 3:12
14 Stereo 4:06

13 August 2012

SPORE self titled 1993

biography

by John Bush
The dark punk quartet known as Spore recorded an EP and an LP for Taang! Records. Fronted by vocalists/bassists/guitarists Ayal and Mona, the band also includes drummer Chris and guitarist Marc.

07 August 2012

PORK Strip 1994

review

by Nitsuh Abebe
Pork is yet another entry into the long line of garagey Southern punk-rock bands composed of women; on Strip, the Austin group tears through thrashy rock tunes inspired by the Stooges and the Ramones, and typically winds up sounding like a sped-up version of the Go-Go's covering the Cramps. Add to these references a late-'90s attitude toward hyperbolically exaggerated garage sounds, and the sound of Strip is pretty clear. Unfortunately, the band doesn't do anything particularly special with this already limited genre -- those looking for truly primal rock would be better served by Japan's heavy psych/garage scene, and those looking for the pop end of this sound would be better served by bands like the Rondelles.

06 August 2012

VERSUS Frog 7 inch 1994

biography

[+] by Jason Ankeny
New York City indie rock favorites Versus evolved from the remnants of Flower, a band led by singer/guitarist Richard Baluyut. In the final months of Flower's existence, the group was joined by vocalist/guitarist Fontaine Toups, who remained with Baluyut in the short-lived Saturnine before the duo formed Versus (borrowing the name from an LP by Mission of Burma) with Baluyut's brother Ed. After playing their first shows with a lineup comprised of three guitars and a drum machine, Ed Baluyut relocated to the Philippines, and Toups switched over to bass; upon Ed's return, he assumed drumming duties, and Versus issued their 1992 debut single, "Insomnia." In 1993, the trio issued the stellar EP Let's Electrify!, a taut, melodic collection spotlighting intricate, dissonant guitar work and odd harmonies. After signing to the Teen Beat label, Versus issued their 1994 full-length debut, The Stars Are Insane (originally titled Meat, Sports and Rock, three subjects the band ardently supported, much to the dismay of the prevailing indie-scene mentality of the moment). A collection of singles, compilation tracks, and demos titled Dead Leaves appeared in 1995, followed in early 1996 by the EP Deep Red. Another Baluyut brother, James, signed on for the 1996 LP Secret Swingers; the album was also Ed's last, with new drummer Patrick Ramos enlisting for 1998's Two Cents Plus Tax. The Afterglow EP followed on Merge Records a year later, and in 2000 Versus returned with the EP Shangri-La and the band's fifth studio effort, Hurrah. The group took an extended break for the majority of the 2000s before finally reuniting for 2010’s On the Ones and Threes, which featured the return of original drummer Ed Baluyut.
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03 August 2012

HOVERCRAFT Akathisia 1996

 

Tracklist

Quiet Room (44) 15:34
Angular Momentum 11:02
Haloparidol 12:31
Vagus Nerve 12:28
De-Orbit Burn 13:09

 Hovercraft

Profile:
Defunct band from Seattle, founded 1993 by Ryan Campbell (alias Campbell 2000) and Beth Liebling (alias Sadie 7, Eddie Vedder's former wife), out of the ashes of the band called Space Helmet, which also included members of Magnog. They gave their last concert 16th February 2001 in Seattle.
It is rumored that Eddie Vedder was a drummer for this band going first as full-time drummer under the name Jerome230 and then joining them on tour later on.
Together with Mary Hansen, they released an album under the moniker Schema (5).

SILO Instar 1998

Tracklist

01 Flake
02 Asset
03 Beat 41
04 Templates
05 Cowboy
06 You Play With Guns
07 Two Grown Men Can't Pull It Apart
08 Cream Puff
09 Tuffer
10 In Constant Use
11 Deckwork

ZEKE FIDDLER Waterproof 1993

By request

Tracklist

Grounded
Shufdown
Buglamp
Remote
Slumper
Collide
10 Feet Tall
Fingered
Bye
Ruins
Talking To John

SQUATWEILER New Motherstamper 1997

By request

biography

by Heather Phares
This powerful Winston-Salem, NC, punk trio delivers forceful but hook-laden tunes. Bassist Stacey Matarrese, guitarist Trip Costner, and drummer Fred Mann share the vocal duties on the group's four albums, 1993's Full Bladder, 1995's All Tempo Hot Pants, released on the group's own Huel label, and 1997's New Motherstamper and 1999's Horsepower, released on spinART.