This Sub Pop Records 7″ was a Records Store Day exclusive from 2009, the Day’s second year (laughs to himself). Limited to 1500 copies, this translucent red ripper features I Can’t Lose as the A, and Military Madness as the B. After having received this essential piece to the Obits puzzle just last night, the only remaining record to complete the Obits discography is a Spainish-only 7″ release from 2012 featuring Refund b/w Suez Canal (on La Castanya Records). This short-lived garage-punk infusion is a great extended family member to the Rocket from the Crypt dynasty, and should feed the monkey of anyone looking to burn off some steam.
We FINALLY acquired the latest Obits album, this orange vinyl version of the Sub Pop released, 2013 album, Bed & Bugs. Nothing beats their first effort, 2009’s I Blame You (as far as I’m concerned), but it’s certainly satisfying to finish this garage rock band’s discography. Straight up, classic, dedicated rock n’ roll music here, kids, and let’s face it, from one of the guys that brought us Pitchfork, Drive Like Jehu, and Hot Snakes, I’m game for anything Mr. Froberg involves himself with, and you should to. (Looks to camera.) Call and order now!
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!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Remove your shoes and press your slacks, because the Obits are coming. Mow the lawn, water the dog, lift those weights and stretch those marks, because the Obits are coming. Swallow those pills, eat red meat and feed your Id, because the Obits are coming.
Get your beauty rest. Ignore the lavish temptation for gluttonous entertainment. It will only thicken your senses. Keep your eyes to the ground and your ears pealed, because the day will soon be upon us. Not you, me, the guy trying to score at the 7-Eleven; not the struggling schoolteacher, the web designer’s fiancé, or even your grandmother’s cat will escape unscathed.
The Obits are coming… and I blame you.
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.