Volume II

v2Over the weekend I paid $8 for this SST Records comp, The Blasting Concept Volume II, which, adjusted for inflation is only $0.30 more than the original $3.49 suggested retail price, or in this case, the special list price. So, that’s something. Also, as a proud owner of The Blasting Concept Volume I, I can’t wait to spin this Minutemen, Saccharine Trust, Black Flag, Husker Du, Meat Puppets, comp as soon as the day job allows. This minimalist cover is hilarious, when compared to the mildly disturbing Raymond Pettibon cover for Volume 1. I’ll just leave it at that.

Buzz or Howl

howlI just remembered the time I sold all my laser discs to afford a camping trip up the coast… anyway, Minutemen’s Buzz or Howl Under the Influence of Heat (1983 for those keeping score), is by far, in my humble opinion, the rawest non-single release from the San Pedro trio. Considered an EP, she contains 9 tracks, chief among them Little Man with a Gun in His Hand and I Felt Like a Gringo. There really is no bad place to start when it comes to this genre-bending troop, but if I had to pick, I’d say leave the 45-track Double Nickles on the Dime for a later adventure, and pick up Buzz or Howl.

Saturday

SatWhen left to my own devices… the current from Whiskey River is a calming and reassuring vehicle. Here are, in order, my spins for this Saturday before Jaws Day. Drink responsibly, or carry a life vest.

 

 

Willie Nelson – Red Headed Stranger

George Thorogood & the Destroyers – More George Thorogood & the Destroyers

George Thorogood & the Destroyers – One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer (single track)
The Zombies – Odessey and Oracle (side B)

Minutemen – The Punch Line

Willie Nelson – Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain (single track x2)

The Statler Brothers – The Best of the Statler Brothers

The Night Marchers – Allez! Allez! (side A)

Tim Hardin – This is Tim Hardin (mono)d

Underworld – MMM Skyscraper, I Love You

 I’m a proprietor of the thought that wading in the pool of nostalgia is a worthy and substantial endeavour.

Read What You Listen To

33.3I’m excited for these newly (ish) released 33 1/3 titles from Bloomsbury Publishing! Adding to the handpicked selects from this amazing series that already includes The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society, Paul’s Boutique, Double Nickels on the Dime, People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm, and 20 Jazz Funk Greats (to name a few), is Dead Kennedys’ debut, Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables, and Koji Kondo’s Super Mario Bros. Soundtrack. I can honestly say, I’m not sure which title I’m more excited for. These books are quick and entertaining reads, and with over 108 titles on albums by a diverse collection of bands (from Serge Gainsbourg to Joy Division), you’re certainly bound to find something that tickles your learning fancy. Here’s the checklist. Have a look, and get reading!

504

hoodSo, for this coffin I’m about to open, this is where I stand… the Ramones are NOT, in my humble opinion, punk. Were they influential monarchs of the mid-70’s rock-crowd-extravaganza? Yes. Grandfathers of punk? (Fuck) no. Proto-punk? YeAH! Where does Death factor into this equation? If the Ramones are, globally considered punk, than Death, without a doubt should also be included into the fold. Disagree? That’s your right, but you’re wrong. 🙂

Wistful Negligence

WallThis is what I get for leaving the house this morning and forgetting to snap a photo for today’s post… no photo for today’s post. With the Faith No More show tonight, I likely won’t be back home again until the wee-wee hours of tomorrow’s AM, so I’m left to scrounge through the limiting photo library to find something worthy of a few, hurried sentences. I present to you, with wistful negligence, a photo of our collection circa: Wednesday, April 22nd. (Please ignore the antique iMac, but don’t overlook the book, A Wailing of A Town “An Oral History of Early San Pedro Punk and More” 1977 – 1985… essential reading material.)

A Wailing of a Town

PedroSo, Saturday’s show down at Harold’s in Pedro, and the $10 cover, contributed towards the raising of funds for the Craig Ibarra penned, Pedro punk scene inspired book, A Wailing of a Town. “An Oral History of Early San Pedro Punk and More” from 1977 – 1985, this book is highly anticipated by the Prudent Groove, and is suggested throughout the punk, quality, and truth music scene across the globe. Political-minded, Pedro-proud.

1979

ReactionariesWhen you’re sick and tired of the Minutemen (which is an impossibility), check out the band before the band… the Reactionaries. Worthy of the hunt, this EP / LP harnesses the voluptuous ramifications of early Minutemen, but with a modern day influence. Side A is the shit, while side B is a San Pedro area, local musician proud, collective remake of the original, done with deep respect, and unquestionable angst.

Watt ‘er Ya Gonna’ Do?

WattTo my dismay, I received a discogs ordered Mike Watt Ball-Hog or Tugboat? double LP with a chopped corner. The seller didn’t list said missing chunk in the item description, and now I don’t even want to look at the thing, let alone listen to it. I’m torn between reselling it (as returning it, I’m finding, is not an option), or begrudgingly keeping it, only to scowl at it every chance it’s in eyesight. I’ve been contemplating this decision all week as it haunts the waiting room of my collection. Oh well, Watt ‘er ya gonna’ do?

Drawings: Raymond Pettibon

Dub NicksI broke the mold of tradition yesterday and removed the shrink wrap that bound my copy of Double Nickels on the Dime, the Minutemen’s timeless magnum opus. It has become habit for me to neatly slice the plastic along the sleeve opening, preserving the virgin cover, back, and in this case, gatefold center.

Pettibon_ElvisI’d never owned Double Nickels in any format until I found this reissue, so I was more than amazed when I released the fruits of this gatefold for the very first time. Aside from the usual credits and a collage of action band shots are seven drawing by Raymond Pettibon I’d never seen before. Famous first throughout the Southern California early punk scene, then the world over, Mr. Pettibon’s art ranges from morally exposing to minimalist shock, which, after reading this again, does absolutely no justice to either the style of his characters, or the weight of his foreboding, and ominous messages. His often humorous take on the vulgar details of moral principles (many struggle their whole lives to ignore) raise a sense of loaded guilt that makes you want to go out and punch an elected official in the face, but you know… in a good way.

Pettibon_Priest  Pettibon_HandsomePettibon_DrumSolo

George Hurley – Back Cover

GeorgeSo often do priceless nuggets of cultural significance go overlooked. Featured, as far as I can tell, ONLY on the back of 1981’s The Punch Line LP (15 mins for 18 songs…), this industrial landscape not only shows promise of conviction, it also showcases the many, astute talents of an already gifted musician, George Hurley (drummer for Minutemen).

Like so many onion-like layers of creative mystique the Minutemen continue to provide, this alternate, artistic expression by one of the world’s best drummers, Mr. George Hurley, was / is good enough for cover art, but for a prolific band such as this, takes sidecar, and settles for a prominent, yet secondary place on the back cover.

No filler did plague the Minutemen. History has converted this opinion into fact.

Been into These Guys Lately

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Stereophonic Eiffel Towers

StereophonicWhile scouring youtube for acoustic Minutemen tracks, I’m 1) reminded of how upset I am that my Beats ear buds broke, 2) how imperative it is that I get a good night’s sleep and, 3) the difficulties of identifying this non-French, Eiffel Tower-featuring record label. The fact that this record is Mantovani is trivial, since the unnerving focus lies within the deep orange and purple color combo, which only extenuates the Stereophonic foundation to a record supporting the Eiffel Tower. TWL-1103 may be a bootleg Mantovani Manhattan record, but its mysteries exist far beyond simple, easy listening comprehension.

Paranoid Chant

Paranoid ChantI peer at a blank page and I keep thinking of World War Three. I dip my broccoli and carrots and I keep thinking of World War Three. I get up to change the record and I keep thinking of World War Three. I read the intolerable news and I keep thinking of this song.

Wait… is it a Speed, or is it a Book?

33.3The 33 1/3 book series by Bloomsbury Publishing is a perfect collection of nerd-focused musical insight into the historical happenings of the development and recording of some of the most essential albums ever released (depending on whom you ask, of course… judge me not by this collection, you will). With 90 books currently published, and many more in the works (including upcoming releases that will warrant almost certain purchasing by yours truly… Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables; Freedom of Choice), my (current) collection of a measly 17 (or 5.29%) books from the series is, I feel, a decent start, and acts as a non-audio musical oasis of printed, historic pleasure.

I’ve finished The Village Green Preservation Society, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Led Zeppelin IV, Paul’s Boutique (working on my third time through… it’s that good), Use Your Illusion I and II, and Double Nickels on the Dime, and am currently in the wee pages of Let it Be. (Check out the 90 titles here.)

If you’re in the mood for a quick, compact, in-depth analysis of some of the more quintessential albums of modern day rock (generally), look no further than 33 1/3. They’re cheap, and they look majestic all lined up on a bookshelf, or so I tell my significant other.