Friday, November 21, 2014

Stuck In Thee Garage #58: November 21, 2014

Riffs are one of the building blocks of great rock music. A great riff sticks in your head and makes you want to hear that song over and over again. This week on Stuck In Thee Garage, I dedicated hour 2 to songs with great riffs, but songs that don't get played to death on classic rock radio.

Riff Randell knows what I'm talking about:






The rock n' roller-approved playlist:

Hour 1
Artist - Song/Album
Parquet Courts - Pretty Machines/Content Nausea
Menace Beach - Fortune Teller/Ratworld
The Fresh & Onlys - Fascinated/Play It Strange
Sloan - You've Got a Lot On Your Mind/Commonwealth
Guided by Voices - Gold Star for Robot Boy/Live at Threadwaxing Space, 6/25/94
Brass Bed - Be Anything/Be Anything
Safety Net/Iroquois/Plastic Heart
Thee Oh Sees - I Was Denied/Warm Slime
The Rationales - All the While/Keep Safe Boston 2014 For Planned Parenthood
Hallelujah the Hills - Affectionate Darlings 4 Life/Keep Safe Boston 2014 For Planned Parenthood
Corin Ashley - Jellyfish/Keep Safe Boston 2014 For Planned Parenthood
Mick Jagger and the Jim Keltner Orchestra - Too Many Cooks (Spoil the Soup)/Bootleg
Squeeze - Slap and Tickle/Cool for Cats
The Jam - Town Called Malice/The Gift
Nick Lowe - Switch Board Susan/Labour of Lust
The Vapors - Spring Collection/New Clear Days

Hour 2: Riffs
Fu Manchu - Evil Eye/The Action is Go!
Fugazi - Merchandise/Repeater
Helmet - Unsung/Meantime
The Stooges - I Wanna Be Your Dog/The Stooges
AC/DC - Let There Be Rock/Let There Be Rock
Van Halen - D.O.A./Van Halen II
Ozzy Osbourne - Steal Away (The Night)/Blizzard of Ozz
The Ramones - Loudmouth/Ramones
Elastica - Line Up/Elastica
The Pretenders - Tattooed Love Boys/Pretenders
Drive Like Jehu - Golden Brown/Yank Crime
Rocket from the Crypt - On a Rope/Scream Dracula Scream!
Rollins Band - Earache My Eye/Sub Pop Singles Club
Eagles of Death Metal - Cherry Cola/Death by Sexy
Sloan - Money City Maniacs/Navy Blues 
The Pursuit of Happiness - The One Thing/One Sided Story

Stuck In Thee Garage #58 by Koomdogg on Mixcloud


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Back It Up

I don't care who you are; every once in a while, you're going to do something so stupid, it defies rational belief. That happened to me last week when my external hard drive suddenly just crapped out. It actually wasn't so sudden; when I got my new laptop in August and connected the external HD, which contained hundreds of gigs of data (mostly MP3s, but also photos and documents), it started making this loud clicking sound. I Googled it and read that it likely had something to do with the power cord. However, if I had delved a little deeper, I would have discovered that it was the warning sign of bad things to come.

Ultimately, I should've known better because the drive itself was four years old, purchased when my last computer died on me.What I should have done a long time ago was back up the backup, either with another piece of hardware or via the cloud. I had made a note to myself several months ago to investigate backup services like Carbonite, but just never got around to it. The thought of copying all those files gave me pause. Stupid.

So when the drive just stopped working last week and wasn't showing up on my desktop, I knew I was screwed, although I was hopeful the data could simply be retrieved like it was when my old laptop died. Unfortunately, a buddy of mine said it was likely the thing was completely fried. I spent much of the next several days lamenting my stupidity and investigating data retrieval possibilities, which were either expensive or long shots, or both.

Then on Sunday afternoon, I was reading about how to attempt to get the hard drive out of the device when I figured I'd connect the HD one last time to see if it showed up. And sure enough, it did. I got an error message and tried to repair the drive, but when that didn't work, I just tried to copy all the files over to my laptop. I thought I was successful but I'm discovering some of them didn't copy over, but most of them did. I was so relieved that I essentially had a second chance.

Of course, I need to determine a backup solution for the laptop so I'm not stuck with all my eggs in one digital basket. But rest assured I will, because I don't want to go through that feeling again. It was like I had lost a bunch of my possessions in a fire, but one that I set myself. Here's to lessons learned.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Completely Conspicuous 352: Hype It Up


Part 1 of my conversation with guest Matt Phillion as we discuss media-driven hysteria. Listen to the episode below or download directly (right click and "save as").



Show notes:
- Jay and Matt, bitchin' and drinking beer
- Enough with the pumpkin beer
- We've both worked in the media
- There's always a hot topic to get upset about
- Ebola's got everybody worked up
- It's been around for 40 years, but finally made it here
- Ebola response became a political football
- Before that, it was terrorism
- John Grisham made a controversial comment, which was forgotten after ISIS and Ebola dominated headlines
- CNN, Fox News, MSNBC amp up the stupid
- Twitter is the go-to source for news these days
- Matt was at Rhode Island ComiCon
- People love to be outraged
- Angry tweet from a low-level celeb can cause a stir
- Mixing up your social media accounts
- The end user is the product
-Dealing with clickbait
- To be continued

Music:
Dan Mangan + Blacksmith - Vessel
GravelRoad - Green Grass
Wimps - Stop Having Fun

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

The Dan Mangan + Blacksmith song is on the album Club Meds on Arts and Crafts. Download the song for free at KEXP.
The GravelRoad song is on the album El Scuerpo on Knick Knack. Download the song for free at KEXP.
The Wimps song is on the album Repeat on End of Times Records. Download the album for free at Gimme Tinnitus.

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, November 14, 2014

Love is a Song, Not an Answer

Continuing recaps of my recent adventures in rock...

I became aware of the Spotlight Tavern, a bar on Rantoul Street here in Beverly, after the Caspian show last month. I mean, I knew it was there but I had never gone in before that night. Turns out it's a nice little dingy rock club with a decent beer selection. And then I looked it up online and discovered that Kal Marks, a fine Boston band on Exploding in Sound, was playing there the following Tuesday and I figured I had to go. Plus it was an early show with doors at the decidedly non-rock hour of 6 p.m., which meant I'd be home early. And it was $5 to get in.


I was one of about 20 people there, most of whom were associated with the three bands on the bill. The show was opened by Notches, a NH-based trio that played a thoroughly entertaining brand of snotty punk rock. The bassist told me afterward that they all go to UNH, although he briefly attended Endicott College here in Beverly. They were selling a cassette for a "name your price" fee; I gave 'em $5.

Second on the bill was My Dad, a math-rock act out of Chicago. They were pretty interesting and loud as hell, although the bass player was having some serious technical issues throughout their half-hour set. Good stuff and definitely a different sound than notches.

Kal Marks headlined and a played a strong, if brief (35 minutes), set. The band is on a hot label and indeed was written up in Stereogum just the day before the show; it was weird/cool to see the Beverly gig listed with their tour dates. The following night, they played O'Brien's in Allston, although there was a seriously nasty rainstorm going on; I'm glad I saw them on a nice dry night five minutes from my house. They seemed a little bewildered at the earliness of the hour (I think they took the stage at 8:30), but I was a little bummed they didn't play for at least 40-45 minutes. Maybe they wanted to get home. What they played sounded great, and granted, they've only got one full-length (2013's Life is Murder), an EP and a forthcoming EP to draw on for material.

I hung out for a little while and got some merch and was still home by 9:30. Hopefully, the Spotlight gets more cool bands to play there, because I could definitely get used to that.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Completely Conspicuous 351: Say Say Sayer


Part 2 of my conversation with guest Ric Dube as we look at the career of '70s pop star Leo Sayer. Listen to the episode below or download it directly (right click and "save as").


Show notes:
- Recorded at More Lost Time world HQ
- Check out our new web series Trust Fund Challenge
- In '77, Sayer hit it big with "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing"
- Jumped on disco bandwagon
- Hit #1 and was on charts for 17 weeks
- Had a song in top 40 from Nov. '76 to Feb. '78
- "When I Need You" also hit #1
- Ric: Skate park memories
- Smoothed out all the edges
- We listened to a lot of kind of stuff at college newspaper
- By the mid-80s, Sayer was a distant memory
- "More Than I Can Say" was originally written by guys from The Crickets
- Half country, half Fleetwood Mac
- Sayer started doing covers in the '80s
- Ric loves Anzac biscuits from Australia
- "Sheetwood Mac"
- Sayer had some UK hits in the '80s
- Ric talks up the post
- What happened to Beck?
- An Australian artist remixed "Thunder in My Heart" in 2006 and it went to #1 there
- Sayer did Beatles covers for All This and World War II, a pseudo-documentary that bombed
- Voiced Dan the Forest Ranger in Canadian cartoon called The Raccoons on Ice

Music:
Menace Beach - Fortune Teller
Thee Oh Sees - I Was Denied
The Fresh & Onlys - Fascinated

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

The Menace Beach song is on the album Ratworld on Memphis Industries. Download the song for free at KEXP.
The song from Thee Oh Sees is on the album Warm Slime on In the Red. Download the song for free at Epitonic.
The Fresh & Onlys song is on the album Play It Strange on In the Red. Download the album for free at Epitonic.

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, November 09, 2014

Stuck In Thee Garage #57: November 7, 2014

It's that time of year when the days are getting shorter, especially when Daylight Savings Time ends. Last weekend, we made that shift into more darkness and less daylight. This week on Stuck In Thee Garage, hour 2 featured songs marking that little bit of time travel and the results were most excellent.



The decidedly non-bogus playlist, dude:

Artist - Song/Album
Ex Hex - Waste Your Time/Rips
The Vaselines - Inky Lies/V for Vaselines
Nude Beach - Yesterday/77
Camper Van Beethoven - Grasshopper/El Camino Real
Against Me! - Paralytic States/Transgender Dysphoria Blues
Happy You - Giggle/Giggle
The New Pornographers - Marching Orders/Brill Bruisers
Spoon - Do You/They Want My Soul
Benjamin Booker - Have You Seen My Son?/Benjamin Booker
Scissorfight - Lamprey River/New Hampshire
The Upper Crust - Persona  Non Grata/The Decline and Fall of The Upper Crust
Aerosmith - Nobody's Fault/Rocks
Prince - Housequake/Sign O' the Times
Funkadelic - You and Your Folks, Me and My Folks/Maggot Brain
Fred Wesley and the J.B.'s - Doing It to Death/Doing It to Death

Hour 2: The end of Daylight Savings Time
Joe Jackson - Got the Time/Look Sharp!
Parquet Courts - Borrowed Time/Light Up Gold
Cheap Time - Kill the Light/Garage Swim
Jay Reatard - In the Dark/Singles '06-'07
Parliament - Flash Light/Funkentelechy vs. the Placebo Syndrome
Peter Wolf - Lights Out/Lights Out
The Foxboro Hot Tubs - Dark Side of Night/Stop Drop and Roll!!!
Sleater-Kinney - Night Light/The Woods
Johnny Foreigner - Dark Harbourzz/Grace and the Bigger Picture
Stephen Malkmus - Dark Wave/Pig Lib
Ladyhawk - Night You're Beautiful/Shots
Yo La Tengo - When It's Dark/Popular Songs
Bill Janovitz - Cold Again/Walt Whitman Mall
The National - Mr. November/Alligator
Mark Lanegan - Down in the Dark/The Winding Sheet
Billy Squier - In the Dark/Don't Say No
Dio - Rainbow in the Dark/Holy Diver




Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Completely Conspicuous 350: More Than I Can Say


Part 1 of my conversation with guest Ric Dube as we look at the career of '70s pop star Leo Sayer. Listen to the episode below or download directly (right click and "save as").


Show notes:
- Recorded at More Lost Time world HQ
- Check out our new web series Trust Fund Challenge
- Just watched the 1969 grindhouse flick The Babysitter
- Rated X then, pretty tame by today's standards
- Our society's pruder in some ways, more open in others
- Leo Sayer was discovered by David Courtney and Adam Faith
- Ric: Sayer was less threatening than Elton John or Barry Manilow
- Adam Faith was a British teen idol in early '60s
- Sayer and Faith had a falling out over money
- Sayer struck out at first
- Roger Daltrey recorded a Sayer song
- Sayer's version of "Giving It All Away" sounds like Elton
- Some weird album covers
- Dube: Sayer looked like a mime who sings
- British guys who sound American and vice versa
- To be continued

Music:
Nude Beach - For You
The Vaselines - Last Half Hour
Happy You - Chummy

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

The Nude Beach song is on the album 77 on Don Giovanni Records. Download the song for free for a limited time at Amazon MP3.
The Vaselines song is on the album V for Vaselines on Rosary Music. Download the song for free at KEXP.
The Happy You song is on the self-released album Giggle. Download the album for free (in exchange for your email address) at Bandcamp.

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.