Another Christmas video on my website, I don’t know what it’s going on but if the music is good, I’m more than willing to share wthem with you. This one comes from here in the Pacific Northwest, specifically up the highway to Seattle with Tom Dyer and the “Northwest Ono Band”. While this does not feature the Mountlake Terrace Community Choir, it does feature a crisp rock attitude you can enjoy so check out “No Lou This Xmas” and find out who/what Lou refers to. Then again, I’m not going to cut to the chase: a kid inside the video is rewarded with “the gift” of hearing Lou Reed’s Transformer album, and hopefully that will give you the reason why the song is called this. Now enjoy. The song can be found on Dyer’s album Xmas-30 Years In The Making (Green Monkey).
If there’s one thing that Nirvana, Soundgarden, and Pearl Jam did for the Pacific Northwest, it showed that it was a great place to find lots of great. The band thing is that the hype of grunge made countless fans assume that all bands sounded the same and had the exact influences. Not every band was super-polished or had the publicity teams to make them a powerful force. Take for example, a group from Bellingham, Washington named Crayon. They released a small handful of 7″ singles and EP’s before they came up with their debut album in 1994. The spirit of Brick Factory (HHBTM) sounded like a group that were willing to show how new they were, even though they existed for four years. They weren’t too polished or sharp, nor did they want to be. They wanted to twist their style of pop music with a lot of garage rock and noise, as if they wanted to join Sonic Youth, King Missile (Dog Fly Religion), Coffin Break, or Hazel and have a huge party. It was loose punk rock with a poppy edge, and their album sounded like something you’d pop into your cassette deck and just get drunk.
That album is now 20 years old and the spirit lives on with its reissue, which has come out on vinyl for the first time. You might assume that having fourteen songs on an album is too much and would lower the sound quality, but the original album was under 40 minutes, which means the sound quality is excellent. Some may feel indie music from the early 90’s have been lost in time but as far as the fans are still out there and show how much this music moved them, a reissue like the one for Brick Factory will continue being reissued. If you get the digital version of this album, you’ll get seven more songs that are from their earlier singles. Brick Factory may not make you feel as long as you were 20 years ago, but it is sure to remember why these songs trilled you in the first place.
(You may pre-order the LP directly from HHBTM Records.)
They look like a band that could easily fit in with any musical era of the last 25 years but Perth’s Thee Gold Blooms are heavily influenced by the music of the 1960’s. Even the title of their song, “Katie-Sun”, may sound innocent and fancy free but the music has a bit of grit and bulk, so it’s not just bubble gum chewing and sparkles, they want to have fun with what they do and they’re very much doing it. They’re polishing up what will become their debut album, due out in January. As for “Katie-Sun”, it will be released on December 5th.
Halloween 2014 is behind us now but this album by the Green Pajamas was released before October 31st and in truth, it’s music that is non-seasonal, which is good. The music on Happy Halloween! (Green Monkey) was recorded in 1984 but remained unreleased until thirty years later. Why it was held back is unknown but this is an album that should’ve came out way back then. If you are someone who has been a fan of this Seattle band over the years, you will find this to be great, as if a holy grail of sorts has been unleashed and you’ve been patiently waiting for something (anything) unreleased until now. A group like that, at least for me, were always on the verge of becoming something huge but because of the fact that Seattle was not the “hip place” it would become seven years later, a lot of great artists were held back from superstardom. For those who have called Green Pajamas personal favorites, songs like “In The SKy”, “I’ll Want To Run For You” and “Johnna Johnna” will become the classics it deserves to be.
What started out as a one-woman project from Jilian Medford has turned into a trio known as IAN. After releasing an EP on her own, once Medford came up with the group concept, they went in to record a new set of music. That new set is being presented as the IAN EP, and from it you can take a listen to “I Don’t Care”, the hopebeing that you will care for it and them.
IAN have a small number of shows happening in L.A. at the end of the year and the beginning of the new year, see them if you can.
December 19, 2014… Los Angeles, CA (The El Cid) ƕ
December 22, 2014… Los Angeles, CA (The Echo) Ɯ
January 10, 2015… Los Angeles, CA (The Bootleg) ȝ
ƕ = w/ Trash Honey and Steps Of Doe
Ɯ = w/ Girpool
ȝ = w/ French Vanilla & Feels
Music videos are essentially commercials or informercials but what if you’re an artist who find yourselves stuck in an actual informercial? This is what Shivery Shakes discovered when they created “Hold On” and found themselves in a world of television trouble. The song is from their Three Waves And A Shake album on Austin Town Hall/Punctum.
Her name is Angela Plake but as an artist, she wants you to become familiar with her as Bandit. She has her own band that were formed in Nashville and they recently recorded their debut album. They’re signed by Broken Circles and the album will be released early next year, three years after their formation, called Of Life, presenting themselves as a rock band with some grit, grime, and garage vibes going on, all while showing strong songwriting skills that are sure to expand their audience quite a bit. Have a listen to what she/they are about with the song “Dragon”.
Tomorrows Tulips just released a new album called When so for fans of garage-y pop kindness, have a look at a video that seems to go quick and easy, but it’s a pleasant quick and easy. You can order the When album directly from Burger Records in all good and trendy formats, or below via Amazon.
If you missed Tijuana Panthers when they were on the road last month, don’t worry, for they are going back again for more shows beginning next month, which will take them through mid-November.
October 25… Santa Ana, CA (Beach Goth Festival)
November 5… – Los Angeles, CA (El Rey) *
November 6… San Luis Obispo, CA (SLO Brewing Co) *
November 7… Santa Barbara, CA Velvet Jones() *
November 8… San Francisco, CA (The Independent) *
November 10… Bellingham, WA (The Wild Buffalo) *
November 11… Seattle, WA ()Crocodile Cafe *
November 12… Portland, OR (Hawthorne Theatre) *
* w/ Mariachi El Bronx
To keep you entertained, the Panthers have made a video for “Money Jar”. Toss your eyes in it (the jar, that is) and have a good viewing.
Most of my choices in Book’s Jook have been the mainstream stuff, but for this week I decided to go to the underground for a bit of independent spirit. The Mummies were a garage rock band out of San Mateo, California who dressed up like mummies at live shows and terrorized the crowds with their music and passion. “Food, Sickles & Girls” was on their own label, Pre-B.S. (which stood for “Pre Bullshit”, the claim being that if you made music before The Beatles and rock’n’roll became more corrupt, it was “before the B.S.”), and was their second record following their debut 7″ EP. For the record, all of their songs were meant to sound like crap, or at least not as professional as what you’d expect to hear in the early 90’s. While everyone was reaching towards digital fascinations, the guys in The Mummies recorded and mixed everything in mono, and sometimes it sounded as if all instruments and vocals went through a single microphone. It had a bootleg feel, or like finding some local record by some local band rocking out, not sounding as professional as something on Capitol, Decca, or Atlantic but often times it had toe best music. I loved the attitude in “Food, Sickles & Girls”, especially as the lyric changed in the second half, particular what happened after they sang “food and eating girls”. The B-side was another fine rocker done on a different style called “One By One”, and that one sounded more like something you’d hear on an obscure B-side from 1962.
The band did a “reissue” of “Food, Sickles & Girls” for the Bellingham, Washington label Estrus Records, but it was a completely different recording, which pepped up the song but it was not the same. Nonetheless, they continued to release more 45’s, EP’s and albums for the next few years before calling it a day, with Maz Kattuah spending more time with The Phantom Surfers while drummer wizard Russell Quan ended up playing with almost every other band in the Bay Area. One of my favorite Quan-related articles was when he was interviewed to talk about his favorite food joints throughout the Bay Area, and whenever I get down to that area, I’d like to visit what remains open, in honor of food.