Saturday, December 18, 2010

Captain Beefheart and The Magic Band - Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller) 1978

Rest in peace, Mr. Donald Glen Vliet. Thank you for all the music you've left behind. I'm gonna go ahead and upload a bunch of your records (I upped Safe as Milk a while back, the damn DMCA shut that one down) but here's the link to that again: SAFE AS MILK (fuck you, DMCA!)

Anyway, I'm gonna give you my favorite of his later period stuff, and that's 1978's Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller). It's accessible but still arty as all hell; the band is a tightly knitted sweater of weird grooves, the Captain retains his trademark growl- it's considered his comeback album and has a bunch of leftovers from his more (dare I say) commercial attempts (Bluejeans and Moonbeams, etc...) that existed as instrumentals and snippets of songs that were given a full-on re-model here.

I'm gonna up his duet record with Zappa (Bongo Fury) in the next few days as well; it's probably the greatest record from the mid-70s (that gets better and better upon every listen). So without further ado; here's the Captain. Wherever you are, you are loved everywhere by music nerds like me...

Friday, December 17, 2010

El Guincho - Alegranza (2007)

El Guincho is the moniker of one Pablo Díaz-Reixa of the Canary Islands. First time I ever heard this (early '08) I was in the fabled San Francisco institution Aquarius Records. I always feel weird asking the clerks at record stores what we're listening to (I don't wanna out myself as a n00b, that's what I do to you all with this blog here) but the dudes that work there are mad chill and not pretentious at all, so I was like, "uh, is this another Panda Bear record? Cuz I thought he just had one last summer..." and was met with, "no, this is some Spanish guy, El Guincho."

Of course I didn't buy it then and there; I ran home and illegally downloaded it because I'm a massive douchebag like that. Now I pass the douche on to you.

El Guincho - Alegranza (2007; Discoteca Océano)
59 mb; VBR avg ~ 197 kbps

Teenage Fanclub - Bandwagonesque (1991)

Teenage Fanclub are a fine example of power pop in all of its sickening glory- set right in the crossroads of old and new and owing as much to earlier 1970's bands like Big Star as well as the illustrious work of Todd Rundgren and the jangly sensibilities of 80's mainstays The Smiths and R.E.M., not to mention the influence they've had on an entire generation of indie popsters (Belle & Sebastian, et. al.)

Fans and critics alike seem to point to their 1995 record Grand Prix as their finest moment; I think it doesn't have the same urgency as Bandwagonesque and plus; I got this one on a whim when I was in high school- the album cover art coupled with the fact that the CD was $1.99 (the main impetus being that awesome track they did with De La Soul on the Judgment Night Soundtrack).

Anyway; this is something I listen to when I want to remember my senior year of high school; it's inextricably wedged in between going stoned out of my 16-year old mind to football games on Friday night, then awful golf course keg parties on Saturday night to staying up late on Sunday nights to watch 120 Minutes...