The Hot Snakes first album is my favorite, but I fight to call it their best. Suicide Invoice, their second, gets the best reviews online, but if pressed, I’d say Audit in Progress, their third, is the champion. Whichever you prefer, give it, or all, a proper listen sometime this weekend. Your Monday morning will thank you.
(Photo to come as soon as this 3rd rate, garbage bag Wi-Fi decides to start functioning…) So the lovely SO and I decided to take a trip to Sultan City, mainly because I’m a big dumb idiot. I have no idea what to anticipate, but expectations are certainly running on 11! (As previously stated, Wi-Fi at this Palms Springs hotel is garbage bag) #giveusakiss
Update @ 12:17: Wi-Fi decides to function, and allows my feeble image upload to compete. Don’t come to Palm Springs for the Wi-Fi, kids…
With shame and guilt do I type these pathetic and shadowed words… I have no idea what this comp sounds like. I don’t remember ordering it, spinning it, nor can I, for the life of me, recall even a fraction of any of these unreleased tracks. The Sultans, Sonny Vincent, Beehive and The Barracudas, Hot Snakes, and Rocket from the Crypt! Please excuse my momentary lapse of all controllable comprehension. This evening’s goal… digitize this album! Thank you for allowing me to share my scandalous humiliation… carry on.
There was a time when the only Hot Snakes I listened to was 2000’s Automatic Midnight. 2002’s Suicide Invoice came and went, and so did 2004’s Audit in Progress, their last “proper” studio album. Fast forward to 2014 when I got my grubby mitts on a few Hot Snakes tickets (Alex’s Bar, Long Beach, CA). And during my homework / listening prep, I absolutely fell in love with Audit in Progress, specifically the first four tracks, Brainstrust, Hi-Lites, Retrofit, and Kreative Kontrol. Rocket from the Crypt (another John Reis outfit) holds the candle to the best one-two opener for any album with 1995’s Scream, Dracula, Scream!, but Audit in Progress may be the crowned king of an album with the best one-two-three-four track opener. Automatic Midnight was outstanding, but Audit in Progress is downright spectacular. Seek it out if you haven’t already.
P.S. RFTC at Alex’s Bar (back to back nights) later this month…
Tonight’s installment was all set and scheduled for Still Bill, the 2nd studio album by the rug-tappin’ soul-funk master, Bill Withers… that was, until I found out that Drive Like Jehu was reuniting for a free, outdoor show in their hometown of San Diego after a 19-year hiatus. Needless to say, I’m beside myself with childlike excitement (to put it mildly). San Diego road trip in little over a week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It’s ANGRY CHRISTMAS here at the Prudent Groove, and to help us with our holiday jeering will be the following:
Rocket from the Crypt – Boychucker
The Dismemberment Plan – I Love a Magician
Oxford Collapse – Molasses
The Murder City Devils – Ready for More
Hot Snakes – Salton City
Defacto Oppression – It’s Not That Simple
Andrew Jackson Jihad – People II: The Reckoning
Stiff Little Fingers – Here We Are Nowhere
Chronic Sick – Mucho Macho
Slayer – Angel of Death
Before breaking Lou Brock’s coveted career Major League stolen base record of 938, a very young Rickey Henderson had to steal his first base. Before The Beatles could release the immeasurable Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, they had to play backup to Tony Sheridan. All legacies have a beginning, and before the Hot Snakes, the Obits, Drive Like Jehu, the Sultans, The Night Marchers and the crème de la crème, Rocket from the Crypt, before modern day rock ‘n’ roll emerged from the heavens and established itself as “the majestic sound from the Gods,” there was Pitchfork.
Rick Froberg, meet John Reis. Get through your handshakes and your pleasant introductions quickly, because over the next 25 years you’ve got four singles, one EP and seven albums to write, record, produce and release under the heading of three different bands: Pitchfork, Drive Like Jehu and Hot Snakes. Get busy boys… the world is waiting.
The first recorded ANYTHING by both Froberg and Reis (their musical rookie card), Saturn Outhouse contains the same melodic, in your face, sky-high level of energy found in Drive Like Jehu and Hot Snakes, and like those bands, sees Froberg on vocals and Reis on lead guitar. It’s evident, as seen from Reis’ more recent work, how much he is influenced by mid-60’s obscure garage rock, but Saturn Outhouse sounds more like an Ian MacKaye-headed Fugazi than anything released by the Seeds.
To the causal listener, Pitchfork can easily, and understandably, be confused for Drive Like Jehu, and vise versa. The two bands have striking similarities (scratching vocals by Froberg, piercing guitar by Reis, melodic, drawn-out landscapes), but the difference lies in the level of maturity exuded by both Froberg and Reis between Pitchfork’s demise (1990) and the birth of Drive Like Jehu (later in 1990). I haven’t matured that much in 33 years, and these guys crossed that mark in their early twenties! Quiet simply put, Froberg and Reis were adolescents, yes, but they were also music legends in the making.
Containing the tracks, Thin Ice, Goat and Sinking, this little necessity of music history can be had for a surprisingly cheap amount. Starting at only $6.54 over at Discogs, this gem can, and should, be sought after by any, and every fan of the majestic, modern day rock ‘n’ roll sound.
In the wake of my esteemed excitement for tonight’s The Night Marchers show, I’ve decided to showcase one of the grooviest looking records in my collection, Rocket from the Crypt’s 1998 UK single, When In Rome (Do The Jerk!).
Speedo (John Reis), who helped form Rocket from the Crypt and acted as lead vocalist and guitarist, recently formed The Night Marchers (and was previously a principle member of Pitchfork, Drive Like Jehu and Hot Snakes). So for those of you know didn’t know, now see the connection.
This picture disc shaped like the (Rocket from the Crypt) RFTC logo (as you can plainly see) consists of three tracks: When In Rome (Do The Jerk!), Tarzan and Tiger Feet Tonite and was the first single released from their 1998 album, RFTC.
RFTC, and its first single, When In Rome (Do The Jerk!) saw the band at odds with themselves as well as with their (then) label Interscope Records. Record sales were less than expected, which led to the band’s departure from Interscope in 1999. Longtime mainstay RFTC drummer, Atom left the band shortly thereafter to become a tour roadie (drum tech) for Weezer, before joining The Offspring, Angels & Airwaves and touring with Social Distortion and Alkaline Trio. Atom had been with Rocket from the Crypt on their previous five albums (all but their 1991 debut, Paint As A Fragrance).
When In Rome (Do The Jerk!) acts as a sort of tombstone-like visual representation of the high-water era of this incredible band; an era that many would argue to be their most prolific period.
This is an absolute must for any RFTC fan simply for its eye-catching shape and instantly recognizable RFTC appeal. It goes for a reasonable sum on discogs and comes HIGHLY recommended by The Prudent Groove.