Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Completely Conspicuous 381: Half Life

Part 2 of my conversation with guest Jay Breitling about our favorite music of the year so far. Listen to the episode below or download directly (right click and "save as").


Show notes:
- JK: Courtney Barnett is blowing up
- JB: Ava Luna released an interesting record
- Funk, psych sound
- JK: Kuroma is a psych pop act fronted by former member of the Whigs, MGMT
- JK: My kids love listening to top 40 radio, hearing same songs over and over
- Classic rock fans are the same way, except they never get sick of their favorites
- JB: Not impressed with new Madonna song
- JB: Beeef is a catchy Boston act fronted by music blogger
- JK: New Krill record is full of quirk and deep philosophical lyrics
- JB wrote terrific review of the album
- Clicky Clicky presents great show July 9 at Great Scott: Infinity Girl, Lubec, Guillermo Sexo and Havania Waal
- JB: Thin Lips is another in a line of great Philly rock acts
- JK: Another excellent release from Thee Oh Sees
- JB: Another Philly band, Hopalong, released good album on Saddle Creek
- To be continued

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!
 
The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blog Clicky Clicky. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Radio Daze

From all the consolidation going on in the radio industry, it would be easy to surmise that commercial rock radio is on the skids. For someone who grew up listening to rock radio obsessively, it's strange to think about how limited my options are these days. There's college radio, which is awesome, but in terms of mainstream stations, there's just classic rock, less classic rock and classic-ish rock. I'd say 90% of my music listening is done via my iPod or on my computer. Suffice it to say, up until recently, I never thought I'd have much more than cursory knowledge of top 40 radio ever again.

But in the last few months, my lovely daughters have been really immersing themselves in pop music. They had already been big fans, especially my 11-year-old, who would ask me from time to time to get her Taylor Swift's new album or some Disney XD TV show soundtrack to put on her iPod. Of late, both she and my 13-year-old have been more assertive in their pop fandom, listening to Boston-area top 40 stations (104.1, 103.3 and 107.9) on a seemingly non-stop basis. Not only do they love to listen to said stations whenever they can at home, they also have commandeered the car radios, quick to switch the station at a second's notice. This is something that didn't happen, especially when I was driving. What I wanted to listen to was what we heard, and they had iPods so it didn't matter if they didn't like it. But now they don't care about my so-called authority.

And of course, given the super-tight playlists on top 40 stations these days, this means I get to hear the same five to seven songs over and over again: Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood," Walk the Moon's "Shut Up and Dance," Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again," Fifth Harmony's "Worth It." Sure, there are songs they don't like and they're quick to jump to another station. I like to give them crap about hearing the same songs repeatedly, but there once was a time when I couldn't get enough of Joe Jackson's "I'm the Man" or The Cars' "Let's Go" or Cheap Trick's "I Want You to Want Me" or Hall and Oates' "Kiss on My List." I understand it, but damn, these songs they like SUCK. I will say that Taylor Swift's songs are super catchy, so I can respect that even if I'm not a fan.

I don't know if girls across the country are into top 40 the same way my girls are, but I'm willing to bet that they are. Which means radio (and the music industry) is not quite dead yet. It's in critical condition, but corporate radio is still hanging on for dear life.



Friday, June 26, 2015

Stuck In Thee Garage #86: June 26, 2015

Drummers can serve vastly different roles in bands. They can be timekeepers, keeping the beat solidly and unspectacularly. They can be showy and all over the place. They can make a band better, and they can make a band worse. This week on Stuck In Thee Garage, I play songs with good drum parts in hour 2. I steered clear of the usual classic rock suspects in favor of acts from the last 20 years or so.

Which means no Neil Peart...or even Nick Andopolis:


The "give the drummer some" playlist:

Hour 1
Artist - Song/Album
Eternal Summers - Together or Alone/Gold and Stone
Titus Andronicus - Stranded (On My Own) (mixtape mix)/Sorry for the Delay
Beeef - Dogshit Paradise/A Beeef EP
METZ - The Swimmer/II
Timbre Barons - Automatic/Timbre Barons
Jackson Boone - Moonbeam/Natural Changes
Kuroma - 30601/Kuromarama
Nadine Shah - Fast Food/Nadine Shah
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Eurydice/Days of Abandon
The Feelies - It's Only Life/Only Life
O Positive - With You/Only Breathing EP
Teenage Fanclub - It's All In My Mind/Man-Made
The Gun Club - Ghost on the Highway/Fire of Love
Mission of Burma - So Fuck It/The Sound The Speed The Light
The Blood Brothers - Spit Shine Your Black Clouds/Young Machetes

Hour 2: Drumz
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists - Mourning in America/The Brutalist Bricks
Marnie Stern - Shea Stadium/This Is It and I Am It and...
Cloud Nothings - I'm Not Part of Me/Here and Nowhere Else
The Spinanes - Noel, Jonah and Me/Manos
Sloan - If It Feels Good Do It/Pretty Together
Death From Above 1979 - Gemini/The Physical World
Quasi - Repulsion/American Gong
Sleater-Kinney - Wilderness/The Woods
Wild Flag - Short Version/Wild Flag
Queens of the Stone Age - A Song for the Dead/Songs for the Deaf
Torche - Across the Shields/Meanderthal
Mastodon - Once More 'Round the Sun/Once More 'Round the Sun
At the Drive-In - Cosmonaut/Relationship of Command
Helmet - In the Meantime/Meantime
Rollins Band - Civilized/Weight
Rocket From the Crypt - Fat Lip/Scream Dracula Scream!
The Simpsons - In Search of an Out of Body Vibe/Songs in the Key of Springfield




 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Completely Conspicuous 380: Stuck in the Middle

Part 1 of my conversation with guest Jay Breitling about our favorite music of the year so far. Listen to the episode below or download directly (right click and "save as").


Show notes:
- Pixies played "surprise show" at TT the Bear's
- Cambridge club is closing after 40+ years
- A primer on the Boston rock club scene
- Free Converse shows were a bummer for those of us who couldn't get tickets
- Van Halen talk continues with Eddie slagging DLR and Michael Anthony
- JB: Indie bands move beyond the '90s guitar rock sound
- Speedy Ortiz explored different textures on new album
- Nice work, Insound
- JK: Reunited bands with good new releases: Sleater-Kinney, Swervedriver and Faith No More
- JB: Pile's new album has a live feel to it
- Hard to categorize Pile
- To be continued

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!
 
The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blog Clicky Clicky. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Stuck In Thee Garage #85: June 19, 2015

If there's one thing we humans know how to do, it's fight. We fight all the time, whether it's physically, emotionally or just idiotically online. This week on Stuck In Thee Garage, I played songs about fighting in hour 2. It's a show that'll punch you in the face.


The over the top playlist:

Hour 1
Artist - Song/Album
Mac McCaughan - Lost Again/Non-Believers
The Electric Peanut Butter Band - Beer Good/Trans-Atlantic Psych Classics Vol. 1
Yo La Tengo - Deeper Than Movies/Stuff Like That There
Bully - Sharktooth/Feels Like
PINS - Too Little Too Late/Wild Nights
Torres - Sprinter/Sprinter
Lady Lamb - Billions of Eyes/After
No Joy - Moon in My Mouth/More Faithful
Joanna Gruesome - Crayon/Peanut Butter
Turnover - Dizzy on the Comedown/Peripheral Vision
Jeff Rosenstock - Get Old Forever/We Cool?
Nai Harvest - All the Time/Hairball
NEEDS - The Accursed Share/Needs
Jesse Malin - She's So Dangerous/New York Before the War

Hour 2: Fighting
Mission of Burma - Academy Fight Song/Signals, Calls and Marches
Pavement - Fight This Generation/Wowee Zowee
Art Brut - Fight/Bang Bang Rock & Roll
The Nation of Ulysses - Cool Senior High School (Fight Song)/13-Point Program to Destroy America
Public Enemy - Party for Your Right to Fight/It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
Nick Lowe - Born Fighter/Labour of Lust
Wilco - I'll Fight/Wilco (The Album)
Flaming Lips - Fight Test/Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
Golden Gurls - Uphill Fight/Typo Magic
Savages - Hit Me/Silence Yourself
Kaiser Chiefs - I Predict a Riot/Employment
Superchunk - Punch Me Harder/No Pocky for Kitty
The Hellacopters - Hurtin' Time/High Visibility
The Night Marchers - Total Bloodbath/See You in Magic
Thin Lizzy - Fighting My Way Back/Fighting
Max Webster - Battle Scar/Universal Juveniles
Van Halen - Mean Street/Fair Warning
The Rolling Stones - Street Fighting Man/Beggars Banquet
Sebadoh - You Are Going Down/Bubble and Scrape




Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Completely Conspicuous 379: Heroes and Villains

Part 3 of my conversation with guest Matt Phillion as we discuss hero worship. Listen to the episode below or download directly (right click and "save as").


Show notes:
- Check out Matt's book, The Indestructibles: Breakout
- Scared of the stunt guy
- Watch out for the quiet ones
- Comic book movies and shows tend to be pretty dark
- Daredevil series on Netflix has been really good
- Matt: Dark Knight Returns series portrayed heroes as old and fat
- The problem with vigilantes
- Realistic fight scenes
- Why the Punisher hasn't worked as a movie hero
- Superhero comics target new readers
- Rebooting superheroes
- Iron Man's alcoholic years
- Fast and Furious series is quietly the most diverse

Completely Conspicuous is available through the iTunes podcast directory. Subscribe and write a review!

The opening and closing theme of Completely Conspicuous is "Theme to Big F'in Pants" by Jay Breitling. Find out more about Senor Breitling at his fine music blog Clicky Clicky. Voiceover work is courtesy of James Gralian.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Stuck In Thee Garage #84: June 12, 2015

A whole hell of a lot can happen in 25 years. In 1990, you could sense things were changing in the world of rock music, but it was still a hodgepodge of styles and genres as hair metal and classic rock still dominated the radio. But the burgeoning alt-rock scene was about to blow up within the next two years. This week on Stuck In Thee Garage, I played songs from 1990 in hour 2 and many of them were on albums that preceded breakthroughs, however big or small.



The Black Lodge-approved playlist:

Hour 1
Artist - Song/Album
J. Mascis and Kim Gordon - Slow Boy/CONS EP, Vol. 3
Pile - Mr. Fish/You're Better Than This
Damaged Bug - The Frog/Cold Hot Plumbs
Faith No More - Sunny Side Up/Sol Invictus
Snuff Redux - Disintegrate the Days/Toy Kingdom
Mikal Cronin - Control/MCIII
Krill - Phantom/A Distant Unclenching Fist
Ty Segall - Circles/Mr. Face
Yo La Tengo - Automatic Doom/Stuff Like That There
Jim O'Rourke - Half Life Crisis/Simple Songs
The Acorn - Palm Springs/Vieux Loop
Trembling Bells - Killing Time in London Fields/The Sovereign Self
Sloan - The Lesson/Alternates
Speedy Ortiz - Mister Difficult/Foil Deer
Sleater-Kinney - Hey Darling/No Cities to Love
White Reaper - I Don't Think She Cares/White Reaper Does It Again

Hour 2: 1990
Sonic Youth - Kool Thing/Goo
Ride - Vapour Trail/Nowhere
Jane's Addiction - Ain't No Right/Ritual De Lo Habitual
Pixies - Down to the Well/Bossanova
The Breeders - Lime House/Pod
Fugazi - Blueprint/Repeater
Soul Asylum - Spinnin'/And the Horse They Rode In On
The Pursuit of Happiness - Runs In the Family/One Sided Story
The Posies - Help Yourself/Dear 23
Redd Kross - Annie's Gone/Third Eye
Mark Lanegan - Mockingbirds/The Winding Sheet
Hindu Love Gods - Battleship Chains/Hindu Love Gods
Yo La Tengo - You Tore Me Down/Fakebook
World Party - Way Down Now/Goodbye Jumbo
Living Colour - Type/Time's Up
Neil Young and Crazy Horse - Mansion on the Hill/Ragged Glory