A sub-division of oldpunks.com

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Bob Mould - Occupation: Gay Man

Husker Du and Sugar guitarist/singer Bob Mould writes a blog called Boblog where he details everything he does, says, listens to, eats and reads. He records and DJs club nights called Blowoff. Bob now lives in beautiful Washington DC.

I love Husker Du, really like Sugar and own two solo albums I've listened to once. I was front and center when Husker Du played the 9:30 club to support New Day Rising and they put on a great show. I couldn't stop staring at Bob's calves - they were the skinniest I've ever seen on an adult. Bob's a serious lifter now, as his blog links to every gym he walks by, and hopefully he's built them up to Tom Platz size. Or at least half-Platz.

Read Boblog and you'll soon realize Bob's now first and foremost a gay man living within the confines of the gay world. Everything else is secondary to his sexual identity. Bob's not a musician, he's a gay musician. According to OUT magazine he's the "Hottest Returning Gay Rock Icon". He talks about the Gayborhood he lives in and maybe he'll move to Long beach if he can get an apartment at The Gaytonia. It's in a nice gayborhood too, close to gay dining, gay bars and gay dry cleaning.

Hooray for Bob and I'm happy Bob's happy. I do find it odd to define yourself so fully in what should be a person's secondary characteristic. I like to think we all should be judged by our actions and content of character, not just gender, skin color, religion, political beliefs or sexuality. That might be heteronormative of me but I look forward to the day Gay Bob will be so comfortable with himself he can just be plain old Bob again.

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Monday, May 30, 2005

Family Guy

I've seen the first three episodes of the new Family Guy and so far it's pretty weak. The first opened strong but faded quickly. "Fast Times at Buddy Cianci Jr. High" was up to snuff but the third one was lame. I hope things improve. It seems like they're working too hard recreate the magic of the old run and then take it up a notch.

I won't make the mistake of buying the DVDs for this or any new season. I had all the old episodes but bought the DVDs for the extras and commentaries, which wasn't worth it since creator Seth MacFarlane's commentary, edited for language, came up to a lot of dead air. I don't think he even tried to be informative. Eighty bucks down the drain to listen to the nothingness of deleted cursing. Brilliant, asshat.

PS: A serious mistake from the old run was to have Quagmire admit he's a registered child molester. Before that he was just a goofy perv like Larry from Three's Company. Then this season they make him a toilet freak. Another good move, asshats!

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Review: One Man Army - Dead End Stories and Last Spoken Word

San Francisco's One Man Army were the first band signed to Billy Joe Armstrong's vanity label Adeline. Dead End Stories came out in 1998 and Last Spoken Word was from 2000. They have a third album on BYO from 2002.

This is well done punk revival of a melodic, lads-will-be-lads style that combines some Clash, Stiff Little Fingers and Sham 69. I like it but only a few songs at a time. I appreciate good nth-wave bands like this but don't take much interest beyond that.

Jack Dalyrymple's singing reminds me of pop-punk sillies The Beatnik Termites, and maybe they have more in common than one would think. They both play pleasant, catchy yet semi-generic songs. I love the old UK stuff but when American bands pretend they're victims of a class system an ocean away I can only stare and periodically blink.

The second album moves into Dropkick Murphys territory, a natural progression. I imagine by now they've recorded some Oi Oi Oi choruses. I could be wrong but I never listen when told I am.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Review: Throbbing Gristle: Live at Oundle School

An easier row to hoe than Destiny, 1980's Live At Oundle School is still more bizarre mind-fugg experiment than concert film. A student asked them to play and afterwards I fully expected the lights would come up to reveal the kids suffered aneurysms and swallowed tongues (theirs and others'). As this article states though, "The show finished with the schoolboys carrying singer P-Orridge around the school on their shoulders." Yes, but how many grew up to become corpse sniffers?

Throbbing Gristle, boy howdy, what can I say. They are to industrial noise what knives are to cuts. Read this. Or start here and read the customer's reviews. The noise people love them and the younger/newer industrial people have no idea what to say when they don't feel cheated. I'd start with 20 Jazzz Funk Greats and wade out from there. If you don't like where there is going, it only gets worse, so stop. The $225 live box set is what's known in serial killer trials as "Exhibit A".

I like Throbbing Gristle songs when they do occur, and this live set has at least four so I didn't feel cheated. I did pause a few times to clean my kitchen floor, take apart my stove to light the pilot and work on some Word files. This happens all the time with me and TG. For me they're "Industrious Music" since I get so much done while dealing with it.

Single camera, bleeding colors, disturbing overlayed images - check. Cosey Fanni Tutti wearing a tight leather mini-skirt - check. Genesis Breyer P-Orridge (real name Skippy McHuggncuddle) looking blank and angry - check. The other two guys not looking forward - check. All in all a great show.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Not Subtle and Not Funny

I had a bad sciatica attack this week so I remembered the TV ad I'd like to submit to the makers of Aleve. My idea for Arroz Con Pollo Pops didn't fly but this one will work.

It's based on the 1975 Al Pacino film Dog Day Afternoon, in which Al robs a bank to get money for his boyfriend's sex change operation. It's a true story too. You can't make this stuff up. I mean, you could, but why would you want to, especially since it's true.

The commercial opens with Al, as Sonny Wortzik, screaming not "Attica! Attica! Attica!" but "Sciatica! Sciatica! Sciatica!". Then an actor made up like Huggy Bear is blue-screened into the crowd and he screams "Give the brother some relief!" The crowd concurs. Next an arm extends from the left holding a bottle of Aleve and two tablets are dropped in to the hand of what's supposed to be Al Pacino. He yells "Ooh-Rah!" Then they show a scene of Al looking rested and he says "Oh, that's the stuff! Let's go home." The crowd cheers, a lot. THE END.

Subtle and Funny

Vodkapundit links to the amazon.com reviews of one Henry Raddick, who gives everything the highest rating and then dispenses great pieces of conceptual humor.

For a book on composting human manure he writes "Marjorie and I have been composting for 3 years now, but recently we have started to use the term "manure" and we now have a few more takers for our homegrown vegetables among our dinner-guests."

Then there's "This wonderful book has helped me understand the word 'post-modern', which has replaced 'serendipity' and 'oxymoron' as the word I spew out when I am intimidated by how clever other people are and panic."

So far there's 24 pages of this genius satirists' work.

One more, for a home shoeshine kit: "Tremendous, May 6, 2002 An excellent kit for keeping those shoes nicely buffed. I also found an additional useful feature when I accidentally dropped a coin next to my home shoeshine kit and it told me that word on the street was the Gambinis had been taking heat from the DA's office on account of that business with Frankie the Snake."

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Review: Pretty Girls Make Graves - Good Health & The New Romance cds

I can't say enough good things about Seattle, WA's Pretty Girls Make Graves. Nobody can place their sound and influences with any certainty (Sleater-Kinney fits best) because what they do is original enough to be, well, original. They're a band for headphones and a riveted attention. The best compliment I can give to their music is that they're abso-fugg-lutely fascinating.

The tempos change and the instruments interplay and go off on their own at will, yet there's never a false step or confusing turn. The only other band I know of that operates at this level is Leatherface, who could only dream of having the same flawless production values. Good Health and The New Romance are beautifully recorded with no one element given priority. The test on this is to focus on one instrument and see if it comes across clearly and in proportion.

The songs are driven by Nick DeWitt's drumming, which doesn't overwhelm or take the easy way out. The two lead guitars play cat and mouse and fly out in minimalist tangents. The bass pounds like mad and the electric keyboard adds both a wall of sound and eccentric flourishes. Andrea Zollo's voice has great personality and range, delivering melodic screams easier on the ear than The Distillers.

Maybe this is progressive hardcore. The second album is more reserved but both are winners with no weak track in the bunch. Like my "pal" Joe Bob Briggs says, "Check it out".

Dimes Must Die And A Face Only A Motherf--ker Could Love

A link from Sondrak sent me to ihatedimes.com and the nutty flash animation of a dime eating a baby. Just go there, put your cursor over the dime and move it around. You'll see, you'll ALL see!

Then there's this!

5/27 update: Here's snopes.com's take on this fine figurative of a man. If he wasn't a sex offender I'd feel bad for him. He probably suffers from Crouzon's Syndrome.

Doesn't he look like Jack Black if he fell out of the Mars station in Total Recall?

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Review: Bloc Party - Silent Alarm

Man this is the stuff! And according to the "Internet" they're the bee's knees with the highly desirable 15-25 year old demographic.

London's Bloc Party play what I call retro-new wave and the press say is alternative pop. Happily they do it well and even more happily there's a number of these bands today giving new wave back its good name. According to their own site, Bloc Party are pretentious oddballs. Oh well.

Silent Alarm is filled with interesting songs you can dance to like we did back in the late 70s and early 80s. We danced with heart, soul and a little bit of what I call gumption. The songs are exhilarating and fun, with soaring choruses and guitars that, you may not want to hear this, comes more from Emo than anything else. The singer unit sounds like Robert Smith and while I do hear elements of a few olde British bands, mostly Gang of Four and The Cure, there's a driving and whirling energy to the music (driven by the drums) that make this modern sounding too.

Since you all borrow songs, listen to "Like Eating Glass" and "She's Hearing Voices". You may not thank me today, next week or forever for that matter, but when you die I'll piss on your graves, I swear I will, you ungrateful fuggs.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

I Listened To Television So You Don’t Have To

I take nothing away from Television’s importance. Tom Verlaine talked Hilly Kristal into letting punk bands play the hillbilly hellhole CBGBs, and their intertwined guitar approach inspired many great bands that followed. Still, on record they don’t come across as a great band. Listening to Marquee Moon, Adventure and the single “Little Johnny Jewel” I agree with fans they’re special, but it’s not there on vinyl to the extent of what’s remembered of their live shows and legendary status. A few songs are worth a repeat listen, but that’s about it. I’ll stick with my Feelies records.

The 1975 single “Little Johnny Jewel” is their best song and it sounds great with its hints of funky explosive energy. On Marquee Moon, “See No Evil” is a great showcase of their guitar sound and the rest of the album should have been as strong. “Venus” is good and “Friction” should be faster and louder. At 10:40 long “Marquee Moon” has its moments but doesn’t know if it’s a song or a filibuster. On Adventure, there’s an effort to make it peppier but it’s like Marquee Moon in that after a few songs the point is made and there’s no reason to listen any more. I find Verlaine’s voice also reminds me of Tiny Tim. Don’t get me wrong – TT rocks! Hey, if I played these records at 78rpm like they should be heard maybe Tom would sound exactly like Tiny.

In a number of books I've read, Television's lack of success as a recording band is widely lamented. I can see why, but can also understand why they didn't push a lot of units.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Review: The Anarchist Cookbook DVD

Any movie involving anarchy that's not unequivocally insulting and mocking is a bad one because this brand of youth idiocy and adult cretinism shouldn't be encouraged. The Anarchist Cookbook is a bad but not that bad film with decent performances but uneven writing filled with situations beyond improbable to truly impossible. I’m not the type to not like a joke because I know a dog can’t drive a car, but some of the whimsical scene endings and coincidences contrived by writer/director Jordan Susman fall so flat they should end with the sound effect “Wa wa wa waaaaaaaaaaa!”

Anarchy is about Being Against for its own sake. It’s not pro-anything because Bad Is Good overrides all their slogans and rationalizations. Anarchists always smile when they say what they’re “for” because they know they're lying. My question is this: if anarchists declare war against society, why can’t society fight back? Is it because most of them are little rich kids? Is it because people who claim to obey no laws would sue in a heartbeat if their rights were infringed? It’s funny when it’s not sad.

Puck is the central character of a film inspired by SLC Punk, Fight Club, Trainspotting and Suburbia. He’s supposed to represent the conscience of the film but all in all he’s too much of an asshole to be likeable. The film takes such a dim view of people who actually work for a living they show Puck and his rasta-Stimpy pal Double D stealing from a poor and obviously physically handicapped street vendor. This passes for wacky fun. They show yuppies from 1983 or something throughout the movie. Odd.

John (No Reasonable Offer Refused) Savage plays a hippy and he’s good, but the diary thing was badly conceived. Dylan (Don't Call Me Angel) Bruno is also good as a pathological nihilist. All the major players are good, but some of the speaking and especially all the non-speaking extras are below amateur.

The Anarchist Cookbook annoyed me in the beginning because it presented idiot anarchist dogma as fact, spewed in excited voiceovers. It settled into a workable pattern of humanistic discourse broken up by acts of stupidity and bad storytelling. The ending sure pissed off the anarchy kids! Wa wa wa waaaaaaaaaaa!

For some real laughs read the user comments at the IMDB. Here's one now from Sammy: "I guess my missive is directed at the other people who have seen it and at the other people who DARE TO WATCH IT WITH AN OPEN MIND (a cardinal sin in this day and age)." He titled his review "Too smart for today's dumb audiences". To Sammy, and to all the kids, I say this: Smash the state/before you graduate/then you gotta get a job/and it's too late!!

Newsweak Proves They Have No Bias

Compliments of Wizbang, here's the American and Japanese versions of the same issue. The overseas edition truly-ooly says "The Day America Died - The ideal of 'freedom' falls to the ground due to Bush continuing in office."


Sunday, May 22, 2005

Two Types Of Punk Buts

1) A fellow at my gym looked punkish so one day whilst standing next to him I struck up a conversation. He answered to the punk question in the affirmative. A few bands were discussed and then he brought up Skrewdriver, the Minor Threat of white power hate music. I said "Well... I'm Jewish", which made him thunk a second and then he replied "But, they write great songs". I blinked a few times and exited stage left.

2) I knew a homosexual gentleman in Washington DC who was a tenant in a fancy apartment building I helped manage. He said he could help me get a civil service job, which didn't offer a great starting pay but it was secure work, and if you stuck around long enough you could do ok. One day I visited him and he was drunk. As I was leaving he asked if I wanted to watch a video. In response to my query he said it was in fact a gay sex video. I reminded him, for the 10th time, that I wasn't gay. He thunk a second and then said "But, it's so hot!" I exited door right.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Dollar Store Dragnet

Just a quick plug. I find episodes of Dragnet at the dollar store and the shows are incredibly tense, nasty, funny and unafraid. The 1951 run must all be in public domain. Today I watched Lee Marvin in "The Big Cast" and a nasty piece of action called "The Big Phone Call". Dragnet is remembered as a parody on certain levels but Jack Webb had it working on a number of levels. It was Just The Facts and a lot of well-acted drama. Webb exuded both bored weariness and raw contempt. What a great show.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Old Punk Memory 5

I could never figure out the appeal of Barry Manilow. My father tormented me with Manilow 8-Tracks on long trips, and the only good to come from it was to make the Neil Diamond that followed tolerable. Barry was so Liberace he turned Neil into Lemmy. His fans created and use the word "Manilove", for Jiminy's sake! On his 1977 live album he sang a medley of commercials he wrote for Dr. Pepper, Kentucky Fried Chicken, State Farm, McDonald's and others. The memories flood back and they hurt.

On a TV show around 1980 Barry did the following: he said "This is my impression of New Wave", then he waved a limp wrist and made a childish face of insult. Cut to commercial.


The BBC, Orwell's inspiration for 1984's Ministry Of Information, ran a puff-piece on Barry that featured the following trail of poop. I keep on forgetting I'm out of style:

Punk, New Wave, Grunge, House, all may have come and gone, but Manilow ploughs on regardless, like an acrylic-clad ocean liner.

Proof Of Something Maybe

Here's the classic coincidence list that's been blowing the minds of teens since 1963. It proves Kennedy was reincarnated from Lincoln and twice doomed. Maybe it means Kennedy's killers control everything and made all these things happen because they can. It also keeps conspiracy theorists too busy to discover their evil plans of world domination in service of their space alien or Christian Right masters. I think we can all agree it means we have no control over our lives so why even bother flushing the toilet or putting litter in its place..

Abraham Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846.
John F. Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946.

Abraham Lincoln was elected President in 1860.
John F. Kennedy was elected President in 1960.

Both were particularly concerned with civil rights.
Both wives lost a child while living in the White House.

Both Presidents were shot on a Friday.
Both Presidents were shot in the head.

Now it gets really weird.
Lincoln's secretary was named Kennedy.
Kennedy's Secretary was named Lincoln.

Both were assassinated by Southerners.
Both were succeeded by Southerners named Johnson.

Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Lincoln, was born in 1808.
Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.

John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, was born in 1839.
Lee Harvey Oswald, who assassinated Kennedy, was born in 1939.

Both assassins were known by their three! names.
Both names are composed of fifteen letters.

Now hang on to your seat.
Lincoln was shot at the theater named "Ford."

Kennedy was shot in a car called "Lincoln" made by "Ford."
Booth and Oswald were assassinated before their trials.

And here's the "kicker":
A week before Lincoln was shot, he was in Monroe, Maryland.
A week before Kennedy was shot, he was with Marilyn

Lincoln was shot in a theater and the assassin ran to a warehouse.....
Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and the assassin ran to a theater...

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Vinnie Wuvs David

Vinnie from England wrote to say I wasn't qualified to think David Bowie's career jumped the shark with "Let's Dance". He went on to assert that if I spent time in England I'd also understand the genius of Tin Machine. If only I knew what he knows and experienced the local colour like he does.

It took me a while to get over that guys named Vinnie live in England. I normally don't think of Italians having bad teeth, but here goes (also, don't miss The Big Book Of British Smiles). Years ago a faux-zen martial arts guys told me I couldn't have an opinion on a martial art unless I'd studied it for five years. Then he sat back with a very smug smile I would have loved to wipe off his face except he'd have hurt me too much.

I don't need to visit Lower Uncton to know "Let's Dance" was a major letdown after Scary Monsters, and defending Tin Machine is a lost cause long forgotten.

I don't know Vinnie's age but as an old punk I could easily be right when I say that I knew entire Bowie albums by heart before his parents even met. So there, Vinnie from the UK with the bad teeth. I don't want to talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food-trough water! I fart in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!

Review: The Killers - Hot Fuss CD

I don't listen to the radio, watch much TV or read music mags so I'm happily oblivious to whatever's hep. A while ago I heard Franz Ferdinand was retro New Wave, which I love as long as it doesn't copy Duran Duran or Culture Club, but their hit had a horrible beat once it kicked in and I dented a finger in my panic to turn it off.

Now that I'm writing again I'm also reviewing, so when I saw The Killer's Hot Fuss on a co-worker's desk I said to myself "self, them there's content!" It's not bad but not great. There's a few hits but nothing for me to slap on a hits comp. What I do like about it is that it's popular without being crap, so maybe good New Wave is back in style and the world will be a better place for it.

Reviews mention Oasis as a huge influence. If I've ever heard an Oasis song it wasn't intentional. What I hear in The Killers is The Cure, The Smiths, U2 and The Beatles (especially the last track). The dance songs have a nice beat and the slower songs are melodic, but nothing's knocking me out. The thing gets more heavily produced and orchestrated as it goes along, if that means anything.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Literally, A Punk Rock

Punk Rock

Paranoid Sci-Fi Fantasy Of The Day

I have a slight fear of heights and work on the 8th and 10th floors. I'm constantly aware I'm not on ground level and it feels unnatural.

I sometimes imagine what it would be like if all of a sudden the walls, floors and ceilings became clear as glass. That'd be freaky.

Old Punk Moment 319

It was one thing to buy a Big Black bumber sticker and a whole 'nuther one to actually put it on your car.

Instapundit Puts Andrew Sullivan In His Place

I agree

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Melon Hat Kitty!

Captain Kitty ready for the great melon war

Review: Monsturd DVD

“It’s not just a movie, it’s movement!”-Beth Horne/Dale Posner, San Francisco Examiner

It's not the heir to Street Trash or Troma, but for a few bucks you can do a lot worse than Monsturd, shot with camcorders by non-actors for $3,000 plus production costs. It's not as good as it could have been but decent enough to suppress the urge to want it remade by others on a bigger budget.

Read reviews if you want plot. All you need to know is that a 7' rubber turd monster is killing the citizens of Butte County, CA and the diaper-armored police's last line of defense are super soakers filled with Pepto Bismol and a million flies.

There's poop jokes but no poop puns. They drop the "S" bomb way too much and it would have been more clever if they used every euphemism in the book for s--t instead. My favorite bit is when the police cruise around town with a megaphone telling citizens to not use their bathrooms. After listing alternatives like crap in a bucket and throw it out the window like in the olds days, he says "The world's your oyster on this one, people!" It's such a Brian Regan kind of line.

The commentary is great because you find out how they lucked into locations, filmed at work and enlisted co-workers and family members to speak lines. In some scenes actors are looking at and holding their scripts! Monsturd isn't Plan 9 but there's just no acting going on. The project looks like a hoot though, and you have to give them credit for making it happen.

While not a major motion picture, Monsturd is a major camcorder event not to be missed by b-movie kooks and coprophiliacs of all ages.

Monday, May 16, 2005


I try not to comment on events being beaten to death by others but this Newsweek debacle is another big straw that breaks the back of my tolerance for major media.

Newsweek lied. People died. Indeed.

I wish there was a Hypocratic Oath for journalism instead of activist lies and omissions.

Yeah yeah yeah Faux News and Rush Limbaugh. Have a standard, not just a pointing finger.

PS: I'll doo what he's dooing.

I Listened To The MC5 So You Won't Have To

I own all three MC5 albums but could never listen to one all the way through until this weekend, when I forced myself through Kick Out The Jams, Back In The USA and High Time, released between 1969 and 1971. The job got easier as it went along but there's a lot of serious parody to be had both in the music and the band themselves.

Is 60s to mid 70s punk relevant today? Yes and No. Yes if you think being punk requires a full knowledge of the history and roots of the music, and No if you feel it requires nothing more than a general interest in the music and culture. Your average punk of 15 thinks Operation Ivy is Old School and that’s OK by me. I fell into hardcore around 1980 only because new wave was dying. To me, old skool is Fear, The DKs, X, Minor Threat, Ramones and Husker Du. The MC5? The NY Dolls? That’s urban hippie music from the Neolithic era. I appreciate old bands because I’m a two-bit punk historian (with a memory like a steel spaghetti strainer), but I don’t kid myself that these bands are of any interest to some kid into NOFX or Bad Religion. None. And it doesn’t have to be. As long as The Kids don’t act like punk started in 1993 I say they’re not missing out if they never hear one note from before their time.

Wayne Kramer paid his dues and his recent recordings are good, but whenever he’s trotted out to defend the activist wing of punk I consider the comical idiocy of The White Panther Party, in which the MC5 were the gun and violent revolution version of the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers (Exhibits A and B). They treated women like rags and the revolutionary rantings on Kick Out The Jams are hysterical nonsense. Drugs, guns and stupidity don't mix.

My take on the albums is the opposite of their cheerleaders. The live album, Kick Out The Jams, is horrible. The guitars wank, songs veer of into bizarre tangents and the politics are slogans. It’s a heavy metal hippie wig-out mess. The only good part is hearing the MC5’s tagline “Kick Out The Jams. Motherf—ker!”, which may be their lasting legacy anyway. If this is great than great sucks.

Back In The USA is a studio album and shows they can actually play. It opens and closes with pop covers (“Tutti Fruity” and “Back In The USA”) and has some odd teen glam anthems on it like “Tonight” (this must be the inspiration for Spinal Tap’s “Tonight I’m Gonna Rock You Tonight”) and “High School” (“’Cause they’re going to High School Rah rah rah// High School Sis Boom Bah// High School Hey Hey Hey”) “Shakedown Street” is pure pop Grateful Dead. No Jams being kicked here, folks, and you are allowed to wonder if this is the same band.

High Time is pretty good. It shows them to be in fine company with Jefferson Airplane and Janis Joplin. “Sister Anne” combines “Johnny B. Goode” and “Bad To The Bone” (of course written many years later). The horn wig-out on “Skunk (Sonically Speaking)” is phenomenal and a brilliant break from the guitar wankfest that made their live shows such a great reason to take lsd.

The MC5 lends itself to parody played straight, and it seems the MC5 documentary agrees (here and here).

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Old Punk Moment 98

Yesterday at a Las Vegas buffet a pudgy, dumb looking mom and her pudgy, dumb and angry looking 12 year old son sat down in the next booth. He's wearing black jeans and a new Aus Rotten t-shirt. It was black since the tie-dye ones were sold out. It might have been this one. I try not to look at these people directly.... because they threaten the status quo and challenge my beliefs.

What can I say about 5th generation Crass bands whose visual motif comes from Maximum Rock N Roll and Pusmort. It appeals to belligerent kids and nihilistic adults who hang around belligerent kids. It's a patch and a handful of slogans, where at concerts you hear "This is a song about pathetic humanity. It's called 'Pathetic Humanity'!" Then they throw their instruments down the stairs and whatever sounds come up is the song.

I spent a few minutes coming up with different things I'd say as I walked by. To him I could say "Smash the State, Timmy, as only a doughy pimple farmer like you can", or to mom I could just whisper "You failed" or tell her not to worry since it's a phase most children grow out of. You know, give her hope when all she can see is despair.

Thankfully this suburban chud nonsense didn't exist when I was 12. In 1973 everybody had long hair, from hippies to stoners to the junior Bowie kid I was becoming. The worst I could have been was this, which was actually pretty scary.

Mini Review: Built To Spill - Keep It Like A Secret

Built To Spill were the Grateful Dead of Psychedelic Emo. Keep It Like A Secret was their best album.

I'd rather listen to Sense Field, Seven Storey or The Promise Ring, but if Built To Spill were popular I can see it. Fans of psychedelic emo needed their own death cult and Built To Spill were just doing their job.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Old Punk Moment 39

Buster Poindexter is Hot Hot Hot!

David Johansen of New York Dolls fame, desperate for some of that sweet Kid Creole And The Coconuts money, reinvented himself in the late 1980s as novelty lounge singer Buster Poindexter.

The nation danced to such standards as "Inez (Is Just A Big Rage Queen)", "Who Drank My Beer (While I was In The Rear)" and everyone's favorite, "Hot Hot Hot", with the hernia rendering lyric "People in the party hot hot hot People in the party hot hot hot They come to the party knowin what they got They come to the party knowin what they got I’m hot, you’re hot, he’s hot, she’s hotI’m hot, you’re hot, he’s hot, she’s hot!"

Oh do I wince when this song comes on, a perennial money-machine for David, which sure beats working, but when it's "Hot Hot Hot", how far behind can be "The Macarena"?!

This song also begs the question: is it worse than David Lee Roth's "Just A Gigolo". Whoever wins, we all lose.

As revenge for this transgression nature is aging David into a deadly cocktail of Mick Jagger and Curious George.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Review: Atom And His Package - Hair: Debatable cd and dvd

Adam Goren's traveling one man, a guitar and a cd player band Atom And His Package was an acquired taste and I thankfully discovered him through his most accomplished work, Redefining Music. It's one of my favorite records and I'm amazed at how complex it is. What came before was too immature and the follow-up home studio cd, Attention, Blah Blah Blah had some great songs but also too much filler. 2004 saw Hair: Debatable, a 27 song live cd with a bonus dvd of that entire show and a number of documentaries and somesuch. The whole thing retails for $14.

He recorded full band stuff on sequencers and synths and played guitar over it while he sang and told jokes. I guess you could call it singing even though it was mostly an atonal rap that didn't rhyme. The choruses were sung though. The songs tended to feature hair-metal guitar riffs in synth pop and casio punk wrappings. It's a bizarre combination but it works for me. On his side was an unnatural gift for coming up with catchy melodies. "Upside Down From Here" and "Shopping Spree" are classics.

On the live cd I liked the stuff I liked and forwarded through what I didn't. The live dvd shows Adam to be a combination of Ian Mackaye and Paul Reubens. He's pure Pee Wee when he sings and his tongue shows. He's playing in the paneled rec room of a Philly church and it must be 120 degrees. Adam sweats profusely.

The dvd also comes with a two minute Philly Music Profile, a music video, Atom singing a song with another band and two documentaries. The longer one is well made but as I watched I kept on thinking Atom's not worthy of a documentary no matter how nice he is or how much his fans and family love him. It's endearing yet somehow embarrassing.

Atom wrote one of the sweetest lines in "Does Anyone Else in This Room Want to Marry His or Her Own Grandmother" I highlighted the line. I think he means Matlock, not the A-Team character:

Hey grandma, let's get married// I know it sounds like a crazy thing to do// We'll move you and your samples down to Philadelphia//Stay old with me, and I'll get old with you// I'll pay the bills, we'll cross the words and watch Murdock// We'll dine on the samples at the grocery store// We'll find a place and paint this whole house purple// Purple-ize the walls and we'll purple-ize the floor// And it breaks my heart to see you alone// Grandma, let's elope// And it breaks my heart to see you alone// Grandma, let's elope

To Serve Man, by Pat Buchanan

Before "Soylent Green Is People" there was "To Serve Man - It's A Cookbook!", the best Twilight Zone punchline ever. The Addam's Family's Lurch played the aliens. Every time neo-neo-nazi Pat Buchanan opens his yap I wonder why everyone doesn't know he's a Hitler fanatic and that everything he writes is a cookbook of nazi recipes.

Drudge links today to this article, "Was World War II Worth It?" and this Newsday editorial. Pat hasn't met a pro-nazi issue he didn't champion, from Holocaust denial to defending nazi prison guard John Demjanjuk. Here's a great article from FrontPage.

What a scumbag. Why doesn't he just come out and sieg heil already. Stop dancing around it, Pat, come out of the nazi closet for real. You're not fooling anybody.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

The dirty punk anarchy machine

This is pretty decent. At the Dirty Punk Anarchy Machine you can create your own pun crock masterpieces. Once I master this I'm going to open for Anarchy Stu and The State Smashers down at the West Podunk skate park.

Review: Trojan Box Set: Ska Revival

England's Trojan Records is a sweet source for Jamaican Music; ska, rocksteady, dub, lovers and roots, releasing almost 50 affordable box sets of everything from Ganja Reggae to Nyahbinghi (bless you!). I own the Rock Steady box and my prize possession, the Ska Revival 3-disc box. The allmusic reviewer seems to be offended by it but for a 2nd wave fanatic like me this is a gold mine. Search for Ska Revival at the Trojan site to listen to samples of each track, and if you want to buy this please don't ask for a box of Trojans.

The collection focuses on the best bands of the 2-Tone era and contains studio and live tracks not readily available to the average ska fan who bought the major albums and splurged on Dance Craze . It does not contain Madness or The Bodysnatchers, which means they consulted me in my sleep. Madness were pricks and posers while The Bodysnatchers never measured up. You have the Beatles and Rolling Stones of Ska, The (Special) Beat and The Specials (also as the Coventry Automatics and Desmond Decker and The Specials), The Selecter (their hits make me forgive the filler) and Bad Manners (much better when not being a novelty cover band).

All the great songs are here in versions you've probably never heard, and the obscure tracks are all keepers. 2nd wave Ska was the happiest music going, even and somehow especially when Buster Bloodvessel sings about wanting to murder his girlfriend in the sucker-in-love classic "Lorraine".

If it gets any better than this your priorities are all screwed.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Forgotten New Wave History

There once was a man from Nantuck... no, wait, there once was a band from Washington, DC called R.E.M. By the time of their 1982 12" they changed their name to Egoslavia because, you guessed it, Athens, GA's R.E.M. pressed the issue. Egoslavia's Greg(g) Strzempka recently googled himself and found my review of the 12". He e-mailed that my history was a little off and I begged him not to shatter the happy memories I had of that time and place when music I liked was popular and all around me. The delusion of nostalgia is all that keeps me going.

He did share this:

I somehow run into the "other" (y'know) REM guys at various airports- and we recount a backroom deal at the 9:30 where it 's agreed that; whomever gets a
record out first keeps the name...well... "radio free europe" and it was all over ....but heck they still know my name!

I Found That Essence Rare

James Lileks is an excellent columnist and astute observer of the human condition. His piece today on blog celebrity contains this clever old-skool cultural insight on how if everyone is famous than nobody is famous:

Maybe it’s meant to refer to gawkers, the sort of people you can imagine standing around an accident in 1952 – pimply losers, neighborhood bullies, crass gum-snapping young ladies without breeding or deportment, the sort of urban extras who lived their lives without the expectation that they might gain notoriety or fame in some fleeting yet life-changing way. Today everyone thinks they can be famous, and consequently it means nothing to be known. Back then the gulf between the ordinary person and the big faces on the screen or the newsstands was so great that no one expected to be famous or important. So when something happened – an accident, a fire, a visiting star – you stood close, you looked, and in looking you drew a small measure of importance. That was as close as you’d ever get.

Monday, May 09, 2005

The 50 Worst Hairstyles Of All Time

The title says it all

Review: Leatherface - Boat In The Smoke DVD

London's Punkervision does da lawd's work by producing the highest quality punk concert dvds at the lowest prices. Here they cover 2 Leatherface shows from 2001 and 2004. Leatherface is not a great live band - ok - they might be a great live band but I'm blind to it since it's nothing compared to their best studio work.

I've been a Leatherface fanatic since I finally found a used copy of Mush in the mid-90s. Before that all you could find was Cherry Knowle, an average UK Subs-ish album of no real import. Mush came out of nowhere, creating a sound and emotional feel so ahead of its time it's not given it's full due today. Internal issues tore at the band and the two albums that followed had shining moments but were doomed with filler, knocking the band off the wave they created.

In 1999 BYO Records ensured their place in the next life by pulling Frankie Stubbs & Co. off their arses to record a split with Hot Water music and then Horsebox the next year. Mush, the split cd and Horsebox are perfect albums. What you hear on them has been endlessly copied before and after, and The Kids need to have it tattooed on their foreheads that Leatherface doesn't sound like any band that came after them. These other bands are copying Leatherface. To say otherwise is like insisting Ska came from Reggae. I'm a member of the Leatherface death cult but I know where they fall short. MUSH needs to be remixed and the excellent Dog Disco sounds like it was recorded by a deaf person. Most of my reviews are at the bottom of this page.

I saw Leatherface live around 2000 and the show was horrible. There was only one guitar, which for Leatherface is like swimming with one hand. They were drunk and played every song as trash hardcore to keep The Kids attentive. The two shows on this DVD are better than what I saw, but to fans blown away by how songs like "Sour Grapes" and "Springtime" sound with good headphones the live show without the second lead guitar has to be missing that something that makes Leatherface so important.

Leatherface live is no way to introduce someone to Leatherface. That's only with a good stereo, good headphones and the background info to know that what you're hearing is derived from other sources but original to Leatherface, the best thing to come from Sunderland since...hey, does anything else come from Sunderland?

Sunday, May 08, 2005

I Get A Lot Of E-Mails Like This

Since I started writing oldpunks.com in 1997 I've received a goodly number of e-mails like this one. I'm never sure if it's written to me or for me to post as a letter to the editor. The content differs but the tone is always the same. Usually they're well written and display smarts and healthy introspection. Here's the good word from Ygfs81james3gvfP, or as him mom calls him, Ygfs81:

You're right when you say punk is only a word. I listen to punk. I was born in 91. Yeah, it sucks to listen to bands that died years before I was born. I know there's a stereotype about the one's who call themselves punk around my age, so I'll just name some favorite bands.

Bad Religion (mostly the older stuff),
Dead Kennedys (Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables is O.K.) oh, and to alot of people who talk about how they dress, I want to quote Jello in saying "spiky hair don't make you hardcore!" and to racist skins "nazi punks f--k off!, Misfits (but I never wanna meet Glenn . . .evvvvvverrrr . . .crazy motherf--ker/baby killer), Black Flack (pre-Rollins and post-Rollins, I love the first four years and Damaged),Bad Brains (i against i is O.K.), Minor Threat (hardcore at best), Ramones (appeals to that poppier side), Descendents (Milo Goes To College got [is getting] me through those awkward years), Crass (punk's dead), Exploited (punk's not dead), Germs (shhh, what we do is secret), Sex Pistols (SQUID VICIOUS, haha that's funny!), (Charged) G.B.H. (no, I'm not a crusty), Fear (f--k you, I don't care about you! and f--k christmas too!), Operation Ivy (no, I'm not a rudi, but "Knowledge" and "Bombshell" are O.K.) here's a few of 'em

I'm 13. Don't have a mohawk or liberty spikes, don't see a point in plaid and safety pins, and can get dressed in under a minute. With knowing that, there are a lot of people who would say I'm not punk. It doesn't bother me. I don't think punk in general will ever be dead as long as there is one crazy 13yr old kid with a guitar and a DK album. And if it is, then I'm just a zombie with hardcore in my heart.

...That's all

Horse Legs Vs. Alien Legs

I thought Tom Platz had the freakiest steroidal bodybuilder legs (here and here) until I saw "Anna Nicole Smith Takes It To Extremes" at sondrak's hysterical blog.

Here's a pic of Tom's legs with cuts that make him look like something out of H.R. Giger.

Her legs remind me of a thoroughbred horse.

She, like Platz before her, will one day fall victim to Lyle Alzado Disease

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Review: The Rutles - All You Need Is Cash

Punk reference at the end, kids!

Predating This Is Spinal Tap by a quarter of twenty years, Eric Idle's The Rutles: All You Need Is Cash is a hoot even for non-fans like myself. It's hard to escape The Beatles, lord knows I've tried, so even I knew which songs were being cleverly mixed-and-matched for a brilliant send-up of the Fab Four by the Pre-Fab Four.

At 76 minutes it doesn't drag and it features Idle, Michael Palin, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Dan Akroyd, John Belushi, Mick & Bianca Jagger, Ron Wood, Franken and Davis, and even George Harrison.

Fans and non-fans alike have to appreciate this film. It's loving yet abusive. The John Lennon character marries Hitler's daughter and their animated film is called "Yellow Submarine Sandwich". The official site is here.

When the Rutles break up, Dirk (Paul McCartney) forms Punk Floyd. He's obviously mocking Sid Vicious with an oversize safety pin through his nose. The camera pulls back to reveal a huge safety pin through his head. He even walks and spits like Squidney. Duh-hurrrrr!

Update! "Squidney" refers to the old joke "What has eight arms and kills its girlfriend?....Squid Vicious!"

Friday, May 06, 2005

Review: NoMeansNo/Hanson Brothers - Would We Be...Live? DVD

Weighing in at 3 hours, these two 2002 london shows are a bargain at $19.95 list. Punkervision utilizes a video editing board that's always in sync and deploy enough cameras to catch everything. It also sounds great on my mono tv! Heh heh eh...uh. A steal if you stole it or your money's worth and how. It's great, buy it, I love it, now on to the qualified disclaimers.

NoMeansNo have been around for 28 years or so, recording a schizophrenic catalog of various punk, metal (as much as you can be without a wanky guitar) and jazz influenced music too challenging for most but rewarding for those so inclined. That's an obtuse yet objective statement. They're like The Big Boys in that they both switch between styles that usually didn't appeal to the same audience. They both also have one great Ska song in their catalog.

Rob Wright (bass) and John Wright (drums) are the tightest rhythm section going, bar none. Rob plays bass like a lead and John is (I swear) Buddy Rich sitting in with Killing Joke. Their best songs are pounding, unpredictable and manic. Their worst songs never end and are overly dramatic via hard rock histrionics. I have no metal blood in me at all but even I know I'm right about the song length issue. This DVD finds them playing mostly in the NoMeansNo style I like.

"The River" is a true classic. You must seek it out. Other keepers include "I Have A Gun", "I'm An Asshole", "Dark Ages", "Body Bag" and "Oh No! Bruno!"

The Hanson Brothers are NoMeansNo with John singing and (in the case of this DVD) Ernie on drums. They perform in character: Tommy is a drooling moron, Rob a dimwitted Jason in a goalie mask, Ernie licks his chin like a cow and John chews gun and is confident and in control. Some shots of Tommy drooling are not for the weak. I love, Love, LOVE the Hanson Brothers. They apply the power and precision of NoMeansNo to the Ramones' sound. I'm loathe to say anyone rules, but the Hanson Brothers rule the wasteland.

"Jackoff" has the greatest piece of concert footage I've ever seen. John starts to sing the first chorus when Tommy kicks at someone grabbing at him in the audience. He kicks, points, stops playing, steps back and puts his hands behind his back. At this, John looks over and without missing a beat on his gum or changing his facial expression he walks over, grabs the offender like a ragdoll, tosses him around a bit, probably says to him "Don't make me angry, you wouldn't like me when I'm angry", steps back to the mike, Tommy steps up and they HIT the right note on a dime like nothing happened. I've looked at this 20 times by now. Man that's cool.

Tank Green Is The New Taxi Yellow

I'm not a car guy but I saw this BMW in "Olivine Green Metallic" and I thought "Damn, that's the new Taxi Yellow!

Colors pretty.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Slate Covers The Michael Jackson Trial

8:48 a.m.: "Provencio says that Michael always refers to money as 'french fries.' No explanation is given. I just thought you might like to know."

Happy Today Everyone

It's May 5th, Cinco de Mayo, which if I remember my 10th grade Spanish means "Sink of Mayo", or sink full of mayonnaise.

Book & Movie Review: Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind

Unknown Comic: Is my fly open?
Chuck Barris: No, it isn't.
Unknown Comic: Well, it should be. I'm peein'.

The book Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind is a b-culture classic, one I'll read every few years like I do John Water's Shock Value. It's a companion piece to Lloyd Kaufman's book. Both men tell much more than you want to know about their bowl movements and embarrassing personality defects. All three men manage to be endearing and repulsive in equal measure.

Was the creator of The Gong Show and The Newlywed Game really a CIA hitman? Like the old punk song goes, "who knows, who cares, why bother." Fact, fiction or biomythography, Confessions is hilarious, action packed and if it were an actress its name would be Paige Turner. I didn't mean that, so I'm Joyce Keating.

Once again, a classic.

The movie is a mixed bag. The first time I thought it was ok. After reading the book I watched again and found it paled in comparison. Sam Rockwell does well as Chuck Barris. Director George Clooney clumsily injects politics into a non-political book. Charlie Kaufman's script has its moments but makes unneccessary changes. The last kill scene is confusing, cheap and not as good as the book. Clooney's demise is colorful so that works. I didn't need to see Rockwell's ass once, forget repeatedly. The best added character is Robert John Burke as CIA kill instructor Jenks, whose bit as an FCC agent is the best facial comedy I've seen in ages.

I Find This Very Very Funny

The disadvantages of pissing off America

Bachelor #1 looks like The Onion's baaaad-assss Herbert Kornfeld in the before pic. That after shot is halfway to this. Either that or Rasputin's wax figure was left out in the sun.

Bachelor #2 will be played on the big screen by human hedgehog Ron Jeremy.

If only Saddam was in the car with Bachelor #4

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Review: Interpol - Turn On The Bright Lights

This is about the band Interpol and some other things. I've listened 1 1/2 times and that's all I need.

Interpol do a great take on Joy Division with some other bands they seminaled thrown in. They're not as important as Joy Division but I'd rather listen to Interpol's catalog than Joy Division's. Joy Division was part greatness and part Snipe Hunt /No Soap Radio. Sure they have hits, but lordy could they record long stretches of nothing. That kind of noodling is great if you're in a barbituate-enhanced suicide death spiral, but it's dull for us civilians. You also don't want to venture too far from Throbbing Gristle's 20 Jazz Funk Greats or too deep into Jim Foetus. I also didn't appreciate JD and Foetus not listing what songs were on their records. I didn't know if something was an album or a 12", and after a point I lost interest.

I've watched Joy Division tapes for as long as I could hold the fast forward button. The meandering, minimalist electronic dada genre is like Andy Warhol's Campbell Soup Can. It's clever, simple and only worth the time it takes to get the punchline. The longer you dwell on these things the more pretentious or eccentric you must be. I find it creepy and instructive how Joy Division fans back in Ian Curtis' time drew sick pleasure from his epileptic seizures.

As far as Interpol not sounding original, who cares. There's almost no real originality in music anyway. Without The Rolling Stones and The Ramones the punk genre would still just be called garage rock. Without The Clash, Rancid would still be living in their van eating beans. I love bands that do a great job emulating other bands I like. I'd pay in blood for someone who did a good Wall Of Voodoo circa 1981.


For $6.99 with commentary track I'm SO buying Monsturd. One review said it was the best film Troma never made. I thought that would be Street Trash but the proof will be in the , uh, pudding!

What sealed the deal? This pic of a 7' rubber turd suit. That's only $1 PTF (per turd foot).

Life's good.

update: care of Fark, a toilet-themed restaurant is flush with customers.

update 2: I hope you can read the words, but here's the famous FARTMAN Photo Funnies from National Lampoon, circa the 70s.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Review - The Residents: Animal Lover CD

My relationship with The Residents must be like what Chicago Cubs fans go through, but what do I know, since, to paraphrase the cop from Street Trash, I follow baseball like old people f—k. I’m their unofficial and unwanted career advisor. I WANT them to be successful, and so does Big Rez in spite of the self-destruct mechanism in his DNA. The sad speech at the end of the Demons Dance Alone show was textbook Munchausen By Proxy.

Big Rez is the leader and maybe only remaining original member. Potbelly Rez might be too. Gawd, everybody with a passing interest knows who the Residents really are. The “mystery” angle reeks of staleness. Molly Harvey is 50% of the Residents as a reason to like them. She’s great.

The reviews generally understand The Residents and Animal Lover pretty well, which means they’re understood and taken seriously by the media. At least as much as their recordings warrant. The Popmatters review is especially good so read it and I’ll go from there.

The Residents are brilliant but suffer from ADD and Big Ideas. They start with huge plans and end with whatever they’re able to pull together. Animal Lover is very successful as a reel of ideas to be mixed down into something great as a touring show. What The Residents really need is a guru with experience staging performances that appeal to the PBS crowd. That’s the money and the future of the franchise. The fans will follow no matter what, and anyone expecting Eskimo Jr. should be shot. The Residents refer to themselves in everything they do so the fans should be pleased as punch if their band gets it right in widening their appeal.

On Animal Lover the Ry Cooder –Stan Ridgway film score elements work well. The choruses STINK and should be deleted entirely. The guitar has been happily freed from its Snakefinger-Is-Dead-Long-Live-Snakefinger restrictions. Molly’s “ugly” voices are more tolerable than Big Rez’s. The kettle drum sound on the xylophone synth is intense, impressive and most of all entertaining to an audience.

As a performance this should be pared down to one continuous hour, mixing instrumentals, songs with lyrics and performance elements in a sequence that flows, moves and does not repeat. The biggest problem with Residents shows since the Cube-E Tour (stunning but never filmed. Bastards!) is that they have Big Rez and company repeat shtick. In Wormwood they waved props around randomly. Icky Flix and Disfigured Night had Molly and Big Rez moving around each other as they interacted. Sorry to say this but Biz Rez should limit his up-front time and keep the ugly to a minimum. They should also realize that simply playing music as a band can be just as interesting as seeing a stage show.

Hey, it only took two songs for them to say penis in the context of dismemberment. Remember how God In 3 Persons ended? That’s right, with Mr. X raping a knife wound. Self-destruction in 5,4,3,2,1…boooooooom.

Animal Lover has a lot of greatness in it and it’s a step up in a number of ways from other recent albums. It’s just that it’s formless and in need of both paring and reassembly. I know what’s better for The Residents then The Residents do. It’s my blessing and my curse.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Strange Links

Portal of Evil is a good link dump for weirdness on the internet. Here I've discovered Furries, The Hollow Earth Theory and a fetish where clothed women get their cars stuck in mud. You'll also find links to crazy religious sites, conspiracy theorists and the gloriously insane.

It's also just good for a harmless laugh. Today they link to Sugar Bush Squirrel: The World's Most Photographed Squirrel. The squirrel seems pretty content in little costumes, and it's as cute as it is mind-numbingly strange. The person in charge is running an entire industry based on her pet squirrel. In an ironic note, she lives in Boca Raton, which means "mouth of the rat".

Old Punk Moment 387

In the 1970s there were dance clubs where white people awkwardly moved to Led Zepplin and and Queen. I think they were generically called Rock Clubs. Then in 1977 Saturday Night Fever appeared and disco fever swept the land, turning every other loser into Disco Stu, Disco Sally, disco ducks and overall hairstyle and fashion victims.

Sure, other people might have existed, but if you were a teenager you had to choose between rock and disco. It was war.

In 1979 the Chicago White Sox sponsored the infamous "Disco Demolition Night", where disco records burned in the outfield of Comisky Park as a riot broke out. The fumes were toxic, exacting an ironic revenge on the rockers.

After many years and battles we finally got the morning music changed at my gym, L.A. Crapness. Instead of all (c)rap or slow jam they play a station with a variety of middle option tunes, so I often hear "Rock Lobster", "The Devil Went Down To Georgia", "Blister In The Sun" and helpings of disco cheese from back in the day. It's still cheesy and laughable, but, to be honest, compared to what's out there now, what I once thought was a sign of End Times is now quaint and goofy.

I didn't admit liking The Spinners' "Rubberband Man" because it was a hit at the disco. Hearing it now I realize it's a Motown classic and not disco at all. So I am, was, and forever shall be, Hard To The Core!

(Here's how to say "Hard To the Core" correctly. Start in a neutral stance with your hands to your side. Say in a normal, slow voice "I'm Hard", pause, then pump your fists in front of your chest, your tense forearms crossing into the Straight Edge "X" while saying in a louder, faster tone "To-The-Core!", dragging out "core" for appropriate effect. Now you try it!)

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Long Beach Blogging

I was just going to mention the huge aqua/purple house with the Prince Logo on the driveway gate, but Long Beach, CA is a pretty cool place in general. Let's blog!

Long Beach has an airport ("lowest-cost parking in the region"!) the Queen Mary (ghost-infested floating hotel), the queens named Mary parade, an aquarium (any "Rock Lobster" reference will do), the Grand Prix (sounds like hornets attacking), an international marathon, a hockey team, CCULB, Long Beach City College, the A-1 Traffic School, America's second biggest port, its own dull cable station, a (f)art museum and arts district, miles of beach, America's top rated park and recreation system (so says the sign), and it's where you'll find Jesse James' famous t-shirt mill, West Coast Choppers.

It's relatively cheap to live here, the weather is great and Screwy Louie Carus of Junk Records, punk's unofficial Mayor Of Long Beach, says this is where the freaks of Orange County live before deciding if they want to make the big freak move to San Francisco.

Punk-wise, Long Beach is home to Long Gone John and Sympathy For The Record Industry, the cat-loving SST Records, Release The Bats, and, there's a Yellowcard album titled Ocean Avenue (that's in LB!) that talks about the park on Cherry Street. It overlooks BJ Alley, where men go wookin' puh nub before sunrise (damn you, short summer nights!)

Yes, Long Beach is America's 51st state, and it's where you'll find the empty Prince House, a huge purple Spanish style home on sale for 1.5 million dollars. I'll know it's sold when the house gets painted and that stupid Prince sign comes down. Can you imagine the freaky Addams Family types who lived there? Do you think people knocked on their door to ask the one word existential question of "WHY?!" Can't you just picture the paint store guy saying"you're kidding me, right?"