Friday, June 26, 2009

Why There's No Money in My 401(k): A Diary of Obsessive Materialism Vol. IV

In an effort to fulfill some bizarre need in my life, I purchase a lot of CDs, both old and new. They are obsessively cataloged and organized and poured over track by track (Seriously, it's obsessive. It involves post-it notes and code and excel spreadsheets). It is truly a labor of love (and an unhealthy psychological imperative). But, since I am consuming so much music, I thought I could use this constant influx for the powers of good. Should I come across anything worth sharing (either a new release or an old favorite), I will share them with you. So you'll love me.

Chain and the Gang — Down with Liberty...Up with Chains! (K)
Somewhere, in a dark basement laboratory, a team of scientists is doing unspeakable experiments with the DNA of Calvin Johnson, Lou Reed, and a team of fiery Baptist preachers. This experiment, an affront to God himself, has boiled down Calvin Johnson's DIY lefty leanings and basement stomp, Lou Reed's legendary cool and perfect backroom rock and roll, and mixed them all up with the suit-wearing, sweaty energy of Baptist churches in the south. The product of these sinful scientific dealings is the debut album by Chain and the Gang, the newest project of ex-Nation of Ulysses/Make Up frontman Ian Svenonius, who has taken a break from hosting internet talk-shows and writing books to front another amazing band.
The "premise" of the project stems from the observation that "the spread of liberty has been detrimental to the world. Everywhere liberty goes, it leaves a path of destruction. Fast food, bad architecture, militarism, rampant greed, environmental destruction, imperial conquest, class struggle; these phenomena, when combined, seem to be synonymous with 'Liberty.'" Fortunately, these politics are delivered with a tongue-in-cheek snarkiness and revival tent faux-gospel so the message, while not exactly buried, is rather snuggled up comfortably under several quilts of "gettin' down." Those looking for screeds will be sorely disappointed, but anyone familiar with Svenonius's most recent work, including a Little Red Book-resembling tome of satirical essays on rock-and-roll-as-ethos will expect the joke. Songs like "Reparations," a stone-cold gospel-rock jam about wanting restitution from bad radio and failed institutions, is the perfect example of the Chain and the Gang mission: soft politics/indie defiance that gets sidelined by the need to get down.

Playlist for 6-25-09

Hey folks,

I know it's a bit early, but any good Fourth of July plans next weekend? My city is one of few in Southern California where fireworks are legal, so when you walk outside you feel like you're in "Full Metal Jacket." It's just dark with smoke hanging in the air, and you can only see by the light of hundreds of explosions. It's fairly surreal. I'm looking for a party to go to, though. Let me know. We'll hang out.

Also: July the 7th is the first KUCI Night at the Kitsch Bar in Costa Mesa, where I will be a resident DJ. Please feel free to suggest your favorite songs to drink by.

The playlist:

Things that Are Square 6-25-09

(*) = New release

Jonah Matranga - I Want You Back - Sketchy EP #3

(*) Iron & Wine - The Trapeze Swinger - Around the Well
Mount Eerie with Julie Doiron & Fred Squire - Voice in Headphones - Lost Wisdom
Songs: Ohia - Didn't It Rain - Didn't It Rain

She & Him - Sentimental Heart - Volume One (For Ali in Chico, CA)
(*) Tara Jane O'Neil - Dig In (Ft The Ecstatic Tambourine Orchestra) - PDX Pop Now! 2009
(*) Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard - If Life Exists (?) - 'Em Are I
(*) Dent May - Oh Paris! - The Good Feeling Music of Dent May & His Magnificent Ukulele

Johnny Foreigner - Eyes Wide Terrified - Waited Up Til It Was Light
Los Campesinos! - You! Me! Dancing! - Hold On Now, Youngster...
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Upon This Tidal Wave of Young Blood - Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Belle and Sebastian - Legal Man - Push Barman to Open Old Wounds

(*) Future of the Left - Chin Music - Travels with Myself and Another
Swell Maps - BLAM!! - A Trip to Marineville
King Khan & The Shrines - Burnin' Inside - The Supreme Genius Of...
Xiu Xiu - Under Pressure (Feat. Michael Gira) - Women As Lovers

(*) Dirty Projectors - Temecula Sunrise - Bitte Orca
(*) Akron/Family - Everyone Is Guilty - Set 'Em Wild, Set 'Em Free
The Books - An Animated Description of Mr. Maps - Lost and Safe
Prefuse 73 - Smile In Your Face - Vocal Studies + Uprock Narratives

(*) The Phenomenal Handclap Band - Baby - The Phenomenal Handclap Band
(*) EAR PWR - Secret Stars - Super Animal Brothers III
Best Fwends - M.Y.S.E.L.F. (XXXChange Remix) - Alphabetically Arranged

The Lucksmiths - A Sobering Thought (Just When One Was Needed) - First Frost
Silver Jews - Slow Education - Bright Flight
(*) Camera Obscura - French Navy - My Maudlin Career

Friday, June 19, 2009

Playlist for 6-18-09

Hey folks,

Taking a break at work between meetings. Thankfully, today we're having end-of-the-year brunch, and a retirement party later. Freegan day! Sort of.

Things that Are Square 6-18-09

(*) = New release

Jonathan Richman - I Was Dancing in the Lesbian Bar - I, Jonathan Richman

(*) Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard - Broken Broken Broken Heart - 'Em Are I
Devendra Banhart - Lover - Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon
Beat Happening - Bury the Hammer - You Turn Me On
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Young Adult Friction - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

(*) Dirty Projectors - Stillness Is the Move - Bitte Orca
Nas - One Mic (Andrew Broder Remix) - Modern Hits
Edan - Fumbling Over Words that Rhyme - Beauty and the Beat
OOIOO - UMO - Taiga

(*) The Phenomenal Handclap Band - 15 to 20 - The Phenomenal Handclap Band
Fujiya & Miyagi - Collarbone - Transparent Things
!!! - Bend Over Beethoven - Myth Takes

(*) Mochipet - Do Geese See God? - Bunnies & Muffins
(*) EAR PWR - Super Animal Bros. III - Super Animal Brothers III
Animal Collective - Summertime Clothes - Merriweather Post Pavilion
(*) Akron/Family - Everyone Is Guilty - Set 'Em Wild, Set 'Em Free

(*) Sunset Rubdown - Idiot Heart - Dragonslayer
The Blood Brothers - Crimes - Crimes
Death From Above 1979 - Do It! (Live) - Heads Up
Galaxie 500 - When Will You Come Home - Peel Sessions

Why? - The Vowels Pt. 2 - Alopecia
The Olivia Tremor Control - I Have Been Floated - Black Foliage: Animation Music Volume One
Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O. - Pussy Head Man from Outer Space - Crystal Rainbow Pyramid Under the Stars

Friday, June 12, 2009

Playlist for 6-11-09

Hey folks!

It's friday! Shit yeah! Other good news: I got a gig DJing "KUCI Night" at the Kitsch Bar in Costa Mesa. If you're in the Orange County area, please stop by starting in July. I'll buy you a drink. Well...I'll say that I'm going to buy you a drink and then conveniently forget my wallet. I'm an asshole.

Things that Are Square 6-11-09

(*) = New release

The Replacements - Here Comes a Regular - Tim

The Halo Benders - Freedom Ride - God Don't Make No Junk
Make Up - Every Baby Cries the Same - Untouchable Sound
Fugazi - Suggestion - 13 Songs
Jawbreaker - The Boat Dreams From the Hill - 24 Hour Revenge Therapy

(*) Mika Miko - Turkey Sandwhich - We Be Xuxa (For Alex in Irvine, CA)
(*) The Vaselines - Lovecraft - Enter the Vaselines
Rocketship - I Love You Like the Way that I Used To - A Certain Smile, A Certain Sadness
Luna - Lovedust - Best of Luna

(*) Casiotone for the Painfully Alone - Tom Justice, The Choir Boy Robber, Apprehended at Ace Hardware in Libertyville, IL - Vs. Children
(*) EAR PWR - Cats Is People, Too - Super Animal Brothers III
Michael Andrews - When I Call a Name - Me and You and Everyone We Know Original Score
Jens Lekman - I Don't Wanna Die Alone - The Opposite of Hallelujah

(*) Black Moth Super Rainbow - Twin of Myself - Eating Us
The Fiery Furnaces - Chief Inspector Blancheflower - Blueberry Boat

(*) Dirty Projectors - Useful Chamber - Bitte Orca
Hymie's Basement - You Die - Hymie's Basement
(*) Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard - To Be Objectified - 'Em Are I
(*) Akron/Family - River - Set 'EM Wild, Set 'Em Free

Secret Chiefs 3 - Renunciation - Second Grand Constitution and Bylaws
A Hawk and a Hacksaw - God Bless the Ottoman Empire - The Way the Wind Blows
Masada - Sippur - 50th Birthday Celebration Volume 7

(*) Gay Witch Abortion - Down with Giants - Maverick
(*) Sunn O))) - Big Church - Monoliths & Dimensions

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Who doesn't a love a good druid robe?

Tonight, I will get my RDA of "wicked prog shred" at the Secret Chiefs 3 show. Anyone else going?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Playlist for 6-4-09

Howdy folks,

It's friday. I'm sitting in my office listening to Jawbreaker, avoiding actual work, and updating my playlist (because the people demand it). The day is going well, so far. But looking at this playlist, I realized I played both Sunn O))) and Belle and Sebastian. That's basically retarded, right? Sorry.

Things that Are Square 6-4-09

(*) = New release

Boris with Michio Kurihara - Starship Narrator - Rainbow

(*) Sunn O))) - Alice - Monoliths & Dimensions
Yo La Tengo - Cherry Chapstick - And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside Out

The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Oh Lord - Tepid Peppermint Wonderland
The Modern Lovers - Government Center - The Modern Lovers
Shocking Pinks - Second Hand Girl - Shocking Pinks
(*) EAR PWR - Sparkley Sweater - Super Animal Brothers. III (For Alex in Irvine, CA)

(*) Dirty Projectors - Stillness Is the Move - Bitte Orca
Animal Collective - In the Flowers - Merriweather Post Pavilion
(*) Akron/Family - Sun Will Shine (Warmth of the Sunship Version) - Set 'Em Wild, Set 'Em Free

(*) Black Moth Super Rainbow - Gold Splatter - Eating Us
Fog - See It? See It? - Ether Teeth
Belle and Sebastian - We Rule the School - Tigermilk
Mates of State - Parachutes (Funeral Song) - Team Boo

(*) Clues - Remember Severed Head - Clues
Sunset Rubdown - The Taming of the Hands that Came Back to Life - Random Spirit Lover
Unbunny - Let It All Burn - Black Strawberries

(*) Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard - Broken Broken Broken Heart - 'Em Are I
Neutral Milk Hotel - Ghost - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
Okkervil River - Okkervil River Song - Don't Fall in Love with Everyone You See
Low - Venus - A Lifetime of Temporary Relief

Serge Gainsbourg - Cargo Cult - Histoire de Melody Nelson