Friday, November 25, 2011

TACO LEG & WATERY LOVE!! New music, new singles!!

New music for the end of the year. Long-anticipated and with potential to satisfy: TACO LEG Printed Gold & WATERY LOVE Two Thrills. Each release has Aussie connections: Taco Leg is an Australian band & Two Thrills was released by Negative Guest List Records from the greater Brisbane region.
For those who wish to buy both records, scroll below and save on shipping.

Printed Gold
45RPM 7" single
330 copies

Three new songs from TACO LEG, ambassadors from the city of Perth, a seaside burg in Western Australia which, as any visitor can confirm, served as a model for The Village to which Number Six has been condemned. The principle mode of travel is hot-air balloon & the locals cheer a longneck of VB with a salute to favorite son Gus Chambers. It’s a strange, isolated district inhabited by a society just a little too askew for general population.
Taco Leg visited all the major United States markets in late 2010, and this is the first blast we’ve heard from the guys since that historic trip. It's also a preview to the forthcoming album on the Fan Death label. Printed Gold is a buzzy single-noting headbanger and it shows all the confidence of a Ryan Howard home-run. In fact, in a tribute to his American fans of the diamond, the guitar player wore batting gloves for the recording session.
A certain high-ranking Aussie musician and writer pointed out to the band that their approach has a lot in common with FANG. The guys not only took the trouble to figure out just who the hell is Fang, they even learned the band’s most memorable tune & put it to tape. The result? An interpretation of “The Money Will Roll Right In” that’s a few degrees drier, more inspired, & more determined than the original. Certainly, these guys stand a chance at the film career that proved elusive to Sammytown & that crowd.

Printed Gold by TACO LEG by TestosterTunes

Here’s a clip of Taco Leg live in the USA:

US-8$ ppd
Canada- 9$ ppd
Elsewhere-12$ ppd 

Two Thrills
7” single
Negative Guest List Records

We’ve got a limited number of copies of this import single from Philadelphia’s WATERY LOVE. A-side is a pounding CRAMPS cover. The flip, a chugging staple of WL’s live set called “A Condom.” Buy now or forever stalk the used bins.

US-8$ ppd Canada- 9$ ppd Elsewhere-12$ ppd


For both singles..

US-14$ ppd

Friday, November 11, 2011

Old chat with KV, online this time

Here's the contents of a quick chat I had with good buddy Kurt Vile. It took place in the autumn of 2010. This piece originally ran in the pages of Negative Guest List magazine. You're unlikely to find a copy of that pub on the shelves of any store anywhere. It's only fair to make available this enlightening discussion to a whole new generation of tech-savvy readers & music fans.

KV & daughter, 2011

Philadelphia is an American city that stands proudly on a strip of land between two brown and polluted rivers. You could cross either river by driving or even walking over a bridge. But there’s no good reason to do so. On the other side of the Delaware lies New Jersey, a state known for endless highways, shopping malls, Bruce Springsteen, and beaches where hypodermic syringes routinely wash ashore with the shredded globs of dismembered jellyfish. On the other side of the Schuylkill: an area called West Philadelphia famous for college campuses, poor grooming habits, and communal lifestyles. Between these two cultural wastelands, Philadelphia is full of a lot old buildings, some new ones, an rickety public transportation system, and old men who use their walkers to smack around young people. It’s populated with all types of inbred mutants, drug-addicted zombies, stuck-up losers, and cocky pricks from all strata of society.
One such cocky prick is a guy named Kurt Vile who plays guitar and sings. He’s a handsome man with youthful good looks and he’s got about two dozen brothers and sisters. Most of them are also musicians, but I’ve never heard any of their tunes. Anyway it’s been a real treat to hear KV chase his muse over the course of about half a dozen records and to watch him take the stage (particularly when THE VIOLATORS are behind him).

This interview was originally conceived as a real blockbuster for the front cover of NME, but Kurt proved too wily to pin down in the days leading up to his US Tour. Instead of a lengthy dose of penetrating journalism, I instead offer some volleys sent back and forth from my miserable living room in Philadelphia to Kurt’s blackberry as he hurdled through some of the more bucolic stretches of the network of the United States highway system.

What’s up tonight?

Be better once we get to Seattle. Get there late night tonight but 2 days to get there from Menneapolis, been nonstop drivin, kinda brain frying, and radio show at noon tomoro. Starting tomoro be best for interview, plus we got a TM on west coast..

My man is hoping to get it done soon. Wanna just text it?

Yeah sure, how long is it gonna be? I’ll be driving in a couple hours and I’m kinda tired now thought so I don’t know how interesting I’ll be but I can do it now if ya want..

Well why don’t you tell me a little bit about your new van...

It’s sweet. It had only 40k miles on it when I got it. It’s a dodge Ram 3500 15-passenger. A nice dark blue in color, looks beautiful at night especially. I don’t know why. I’m stoked. Never imagined owning my own. Right now Adam is driving and we’re jamming a Yoko Ono tape that I stole from you. Everyone loves it in the band except for Mike Zanghi! It’s a nice landscape right now though: Montana style.

What do you mean? It’s all flat and gray with a stunning sunset?

The Rocky Mountains, guy. Not flat at all. Mountains, rolling hills, winding highway roads, lots of green, pine trees, sunsets, cows... The whole shebang. (single tear rolls down face)

PS signal tricky round here you’ll probably get some delays, just don’t worry too much about me.

But I always worry about you. Somebody has to keep an eye on you, teach you right from wrong, etc..

Yeah but I’ve finally blossomed into a beautiful grown man. Thanks to you Richie. And now it’s time I moved on and went into the world on my own.

And I guess I was thinking about Wyoming or Utah or some other place.

Wyoming has Yellowstone Nation Park. That is similar to here and beautiful as well. I think some of Yellowstone is also in Montana but I could be wrong. I HAVE been wrong before.. Montana has Glacier Nation Park too. That’s intense.

Are you guys finding time to visit parks and take in all the natural beauty of our United States?

No time for that much. Few days off here and there but.. Violators are tight from all the gigs, that’s good at least. Gonna play live on kexp Seattle tomorrow morning. That’s why we’re bookin’ it over from Minneapolis with two days to get there. 26+ hour drive with no stops (but we stop).

Touring can be a struggle. Do you focus more on physical of mental fitness when you’re on the road.

Well... Mental fitness is good to shoot for. A lot of trial and error on that front. We’re doin’ pretty good on this run but in the past there’s been some roughish moments. Trying now to take it slow, ya know? Don’t let little shit stress you out, one thing/day at a time. And don’t talk shit behind backs. Paranoia gets evil. We’re doin’ good though! Physical? I dunno, whatevs, we’re still young...

You been eating right? You’ve got to take care of your body, man.

I try, Rich. It’s all I can do. My body craves some bad foods, now and again. But I’m only human. Wow, What a boring subject!

I’m telling you dawg: Your body is the most precious vessel you’ll ever own.

(The Philadelphia Phillies turned in an offensively limp performance to lost to the San Francisco Giants.)

Did you hear about the Phils?

Yea only cuz of my psycho bandmates. ‘Aw man I really hope they keep Werth...’

I’m impressed that you can spell the rightfielder’s name correctly.

I was wondering if I did or if you’re being sarcastic. What can I say, I just love games.

It’s like I’ve always said: All the bush league batters are left to die on the diamond.

Thanks, Shakey.

I bought a CANNED HEAT record. What do you think about that?

Cool. We just listened to hallelujah seconds ago. Check out the tune “Time Was”. One o the best tunes I heard all year..

I’ll give it an ear. I’ve been going back over some obvious tunes that I never really gave a chance. Might even listen to the Stones of of these days.

I’ll get u Beggars Banquet. Can’t deny them man. Can you imagine if all there was was the VU? That frequency all the time. Too jagged after a while.. Beggars has a jagged sound alot too (in a way) but more delta blues and a relatively new dabbling into heerion vibe. Nobody got quite close to that style of blues ever again. If there was no Keith Richards there’d be no nobody post.

You should download the song “time was” right now and jam it in headphones btw. Lemme know whatcha think. Bet it makes you feel super good.

(Turns out he’s right. Great melancholy tune.)

So are the VIOLATORS in tact for the foresesable future?

I think so. I hope so. The original lineup can NOT be beat.

That kicks ass.


For the deleted first draft, click here.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Next Monday. Attendance is Mandatory.


Monday November 13
@ Little Bar
8th & Fitzwater

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Catching up with DX & Total Control

Mikey, poolside. 2011.

Let me be clear: the jury in my head is still out on Total Control. The Melbourne-based act issues records that fuse guitar & electronic music in a way that is definitely interesting & worthy of consideration. It sounds to these ears like some sort of re-working & reassembly of sounds I remember from 80s radio during trips to the orthodontist & home from Little League practice. I'm thinking of VH1 heavyweights such as the Eurythmics & the Georgia Satellites. Indebted to Flock of Seagulls, for all I know. Perhaps it's better described as New Wave. It's a feel-good type of sound, all right. And I simply haven't got an ear for it. This is how it sounds on record, mind you. It's the sound of mechanized pelvic exercises. On stage, however, Total Control, as I recall, is a different beast altogether & I'll be a face in the crowd at each & every area gig from now until the sun engulfs as all. They're furious & loud up there, even if there was a tambourine & keyboard.Last time through town, they dragged about a dozen weirdos onstage. Actual weirdos. Not just a bunch of normals acting at being weird. Guitar weirdo is a humble baby-faced fellow named Mikey and he's famous for his handsome smile & sunny disposition & for playing guitar in the Eddy Current Suppression Ring. On vox, a true weirdo-Internationale called DX. He also fronts a raging HC act called Straightjacket Nation & he's one of the great Aussie thinkers, as evidenced by Distort Magazine, the recognized bible of Cult Hardcore. Last time I saw him, he looked like a member of B'last, right down to the long hair and the Uniform Choice t-shirt. The other weirdos, I couldn't tell ya too much about. They all spoke a strange version of the English language & they all had their faces stuck in a jar of Marmite.

DX was patient enough to answer some questions.

So you've been on this soil a number of times, and you've probably traveled in the US more than most Americans. What the hell for?
I grew up ricocheting from one corner of Australia to another. I saw a lot of that country. I also found American hardcore at the right age, in particular the Midwest glories, which was a sophisticated and subtle imperialism as all that shit made me want to revel in the rewards of hard work (ie. spend money) and then the rewards of being a consumer (ie. Debt) by traveling your country at every opportunity.
 I'm driving thru AZ now and I prob see this joint much like any foreigner swollen with romantic frontier notions from film (it looks like a leone film at one point, then that scene in north by northwest with the crop duster next minute).

Why drag yourself on stage and perform your songs every night for a month or two? Can it be more rewarding with each consecutive night?
You spent most of the year working and reading and thinking and making songs. A couple months on the road is good to ensure you don't become entirely introverted and useless as a writer or as a worker. It's the work side of making music. As you'd probably be aware there is no cumulative glory, it ebbs and it flows, but there is a reward in moments like my ole bud R Charles taking a couple minutes outta the day to sincerely and formally interrogate my intentions.

This past summer, about a hundred bands from your native Australia flew over and criss-crossed the US. Is that the dream of every young Aussie Rocker? To clog our highways and soak up our entertainment dollars?
I'm certainly curious how you people have received the spate of antipodean traveling bands. I guess many people want to see an empire declining, some people want to exploit a second world economy for cheap records and drugs, some people want to take advantage of the fact that the Internet age has somehow imbued Australian music with a tinge of legitimacy and maybe a pretty Midwest farmers daughter'll really make em feel alright and some people want to tour somewhere where the drives are less than 12 hours between cities and you can speed on the highways easier and the tour can last longer than a week. Some sickos really just wanna tour, sir, can ya believe that?

There was probably a time when Australian punk rock-influenced music was distinct from what was coming out of America (and other places). You're a world-traveler, a guy with an insatiable appetite for music. Is there any distinction any more? Or are we just sitting in a big melted pot of tunes?
I could generalize that American bands are generally more theatrical and euro bands less song orientated and Southeast Asian punks bands more about the collective experience but thatd probably be more about looking for exceptions to the melting pot rule that I guess Brit nerd Simon Reynolds characterized as post Internet retromania.

I understand you're a heavy reader of Terry Southern. Want to tell me why I should spend some time on him? I only know he was involved in Easy Rider and I just read a piece of his involving a visit to a baton twirling competition in Mississippi.
My buddy Brace turned me onto Southern the day I flew into San Francisco and the first line of Red Dirt Marijuana had me hooked. The same drug addled hyper macho hunter dealt with, but less obviously swinging from Hemingway's ball sack and much funnier. My favorite writer right now is Joan Didion. She is brilliant, her smarts are intimidating and she can throw a word hard. Southern ain't in her league, but he can definitely play. His short stories are strong: check out the blood of the wig and heavy put away for sleaze laughs and Red Dirt Marijuana has something on Carver. The second day I was in sf I picked up about 20 books, I'm really looking forward to reading on this tour as the last few months I haven't had much chance. Happy to talk books with ya in Philly.

Catch TOTAL CONTROL live & in concert somewhere in the USA or in the EU at ATP, especially Monday November 14 at the Little Bar in Philadelphia w/ WATERY LOVE.

 The Hammer by Total Control