Live Fast Jeff Young: Vol. 3 - July 1st, 2017
What's up Sorry Staters!?
Welcome to the third edition for my blog #LiveFastJeffYoung. As promised, I'm going to try and get these put up every other Saturday from now on. You may have noticed that Seth, rather than adding another entry for Outta Style, created a new blog entitled Strange Obsessions. His first entry was all about punk compilation albums, and it's super cool! If you haven't read it, then go check it out. My own comment on Seth's blog: I love the PEACE/WAR comp as well, but my own honorable mention is the Master Tapes Vol. II comp. Killer midwest bands on there, but I also gotta give some hometown love for No Labels!
I thought the whole concept for a "Strange Obsessions" blog was a great idea. Still, rather than forming a plan of action for a well-thought-out blog post, I'll instead ask that you indulge me on some disorganized ramblings about some strange obsessions of my own:
If there's one thing about me and the way I listen to music, it's that I go through phases of obsessive listening to a particular era or genre. I've discussed with Daniel about how we differ in our digestion of records. Whereas he fears over-listening to something good and growing tired of it, if I gravitate toward a certain band that I think is particularly good, I will listen to them over and over and still love it! Sometimes for me, I latch on to even a single track and commence over-consumption. At the store, I've discussed with customers about tracks that stand out to me from classic records that I think are "hot tracks" and their reactions are often like, "Well duh, that's the hit off that album." To which I respond, "I knew I liked it for a reason!"
Lately, I've been listening to a ton of melodic glam rock from the early-to-mid 1970s, particularly bands from the UK. This of course includes David Bowie, T. Rex, and a lot of the staples, but I've also been listening to Brian Eno's first two albums a lot. Like I was talking about above, one of those tracks I've began to frequently listen to is "The True Wheel." It's interesting, because it's not really an A-B-A-B pop structure, but is still super hooky. I'm honestly a n00b when it comes to Eno, so it might be that everyone thinks I'm an idiot and knows that this track is one of his best. Still, maybe you all should over-fill those ear holes with this too:
Another band that has warranted frequent listens is Sweet, most importantly their album Desolation Boulevard. Obviously, everybody knows tracks like "Ballroom Blitz", and thanks to the film Guardians of the Galaxy, now "Fox On The Run" is back in the mainstream consciousness as well. But seriously, this album from top to bottom is an amazing listen. There are some tracks on this record that I would even describe as super heavy and ahead of their time. This album came out in 1974 I believe, and a track like "Set Me Free" sounds like it should be on an Iron Maiden record. Pretty fast, soaring vocals, harmony guitar leads, it blew my mind the first time I heard it. On a weird note, Vince Neil of Motley Crue covered this song on his first solo record? But then contextually, it makes total sense that Motley Crue was a fan of this band in the early 80s. Sweet has the heavy edge when they need to, but also the glittery look and pop melodies that were accessible for radio. The influence to me wouldn't have been quite as obvious without hearing the deeper, heavier cuts from this Sweet album. Here's that Vince Neil version:
Also, a fun little side note, this Vince Neil album also has the track "You're Invited But Your Friend Can't Come", as you might remember from the Encino Man soundtrack. This song sounds exactly like a transition from the 80s to the 90s. Plus, Pauly Shore hams it up in the music video:
Also, if anyone has suggestions for some more obscure glam rock tunes I should start over-listening to, feel free to leave a comment letting me know.
Alright, now let's talk about some new records we've gotten in at Sorry State:
Celtic Frost: Morbid Tales 12" - So it appears that every blog post I'm just going to feel the need to talk about reissues first. Maybe subconsciously it means they're the records I'm most excited about? Regardless, Celtic Frost is an important point of discussion. I will admit that I've never even held an original copy of this amazing debut album in my hands, let alone listened to it, but I will say after only hearing this album on mp3 that the sound of this reissue blew my mind. Very punchy and huge sounding. When discussing this band's importance and the impact they had on bands that followed, most of my metal friends talk about how important they were to early black metal. I understand this on an aesthetic level, but sonically I always thought Celtic Frost sounded more like a heavy punk band. Firstly, a track like "Into Crypts of Rays" is the opening track by which all other first songs are measured, but to me it also just kinda sounds like Discharge. And sure, maybe Celtic Frost is more aptly defined by their slower moments. I remember listening to an interview with Shane Embury saying that Napalm Death's sound was basically them trying to play faster than anyone else, but with "Celtic Frost breakdowns." Pretty interesting knowing Napalm Death's connection to 80s punk also. Instead of just posting a track from the album, I decided to post this video which is a German television appearance. I'm also not sure if its pantomimed? Check this out:
The Bug: Humbug, or So Many Awful Things 7" - New tracks from this hardcore punk band based out of Chicago (I'm pretty sure). I remember seeing this band live 2 nights in a row and just being flabbergasted at the explosion of energy and noise being thrown at me. Listening to this new record, that experience has sustained. The tracks between the two sides of this record are divided up in an interesting way. The A-side just barrels with some all out, raging fast songs that are border on being pure chaos and rarely breach a minute. The B-side, while still explosive and noisey, has a few more mid-paced and brooding numbers with catchy, untiring basslines and dissonant, yet complimentary guitar work. I don't know how this band writes songs, but they must be drenched in sweat and questioning the blandness of reality every time. Take a listen:
Various: My Meat's Your Poison 12" - Yet another reissue to talk about? Here we go: Fanclub edition of this late-80s hardcore punk/thrash compilation featuring a solid shortlist of bands from Japan. The era of punk in Japan where it moves away from the noisier, 4-track sound of bands like Zouo or Gai from the early 80s and morphs into huge production with metallic guitars played blazing speeds is really interesting. More notable bands like Lip Cream and SOB are on here, but this comp is worth it alone for the less well-known bands like Chiken Bowels and Outo. Check out the Outo stuff here:
Mark Cone: Now Showing 12" - Brand new full-length solo record from the Urochromes frontman. I'll preface my thoughts on this record by saying that the sheer lack of guitar is a rare characteristic of the music I typically listen to. While lo-fi, Casio keyboard-dominated synth punk usually wouldn't be my thing, I feel like this record is hard not to talk about. I think there's something about the way this LP is put together that is bold and infectious. While the Screamers would be a good reference point in terms of sonic influence, the punchy, in-your-face drum machine and unorthodox percussion reach almost hardcore punk speeds and bring to mind more current bands like Hank Wood. The organ-esque keyboard sounds also project a cavernous, spooky atmosphere, almost like they were recorded with the intention to suit a low-budget Dracula movie. Still, I don't know if I'm getting this impression from the sound of the vocals, but there is something very dramatic, and dare I say Vaudevillian, about the songwriting. This vibe comes across in particular on a track like "If The Cone Fits." How appropriate for a record entitled Now Showing that comes with a poster adorning the performer's name on a theater marquee.
As part of my ongoing update about punk shows in Raleigh and the surrounding area, I've relisted all of the upcoming shows that I know about as of this blog's being posted. Plan for this to be a regular thing! Since my last blog post, I've added a couple shows to the list and updated info/links for some of the gigs that I mentioned last time.
- July 6th: SKELETON (TX) + SKEMATA LP RELEASE! @ THE BUNKER
- July 8th: WILD ROSE (VA) @ THE BUNKER
- July 14th: KOMBAT/GAZM @ THE BUNKER
- July 20th: ELIX-R / PERVERTS AGAIN IN GSO
- July 21st: MUTUAL JERK @ THE BUNKER
- July 25th: INSTITUTE (TX) @ NIGHTLIGHT
- August 1st: GUILT PARADE IN GSO
- August 18th: NURSE (ATL) / BLANK SPELL (PA) / HALDOL (PA) - TBA
- August 24th: SHEER MAG / HARAM @ KINGS
- August 27th: RIXE (FRANCE) @ NIGHTLIGHT - MORE TBA
That about wraps things up. As always, thanks for reading!
'Til next time,