April 21, 2009

The Daily Choice: The Vaselines – Son Of A Gun


Up until last summer and the glory that was SP20 (I still chuckle in pitying glee at those who didn’t manage to scrap together the money to be a part of those festivities) I didn’t have a fucking clue who The Vaselines were.  I’d hear rumors of some band that Kurt Cobain was all short-pantsed for, but I’d never actually done any research in to this duo of Scots.

My boss at Light In The Attic, the mop-headed super being known only as Sullivan, forced me in to viewing their show and was instantly won over.  It’s fuzzy and it’s twee and it’s cute and it’s rugged and The Vaselines are just this sort of loveable bundle of goodness.  Live they were like two best friends, tweaking each other and playing off each other’s rustiness in the most endearing way.  This comes through in spades on “Son of a Gun”, a nice poppy little number, with a chorus more infectious than monkey-bite Ebola.  My eyes are actually bleeding right now.

Sub Pop is releasing a definitive version of Enter The Vaselines on May 5th.  Wallets out children, you’ve got money to spend.

The Vaselines – Son of a Gun

July 23, 2008

SP20: Saturday


As always, I’m more than a week late on my coverage of a festival, and really, this time it’s a shame.  I came out of Marymoor Park on Sunday evening sunburned, fairly intoxicated, numbingly exhausted and unabashedly in love with one of the great record labels of the last 20 years.  I mentally scribbled down all the great things about the weekend that I would write in two days of epic coverage of the event.  The great bands, the amazing VIP area, the pleasant crowds and the shocking lack of lines for bathrooms, beer, or food – I was going to write about it all, and it was going to be brilliant.

And then I slept for nearly two days.  I blame my PTSD-affected liver, but for nearly two days I was a half-asleep wreck.  In the hours I was hazily awake, I sat in front of the computer, frantically trying to place my ecstatic memories of the weekend on to a page.  But, alas, nothing.  What I’m left with is a handful of sharply-lined memories from a weekend I consider to be one of the better musical experiences of my life.

You’ll get what I remember, in a vaguely chronological order.


1.  Marymoor Park is the place for a music festival.  I don’t know about how effective is logistically, but the general grassy-hill, dirty hippy feel of the immaculately laid out space, is one that’s friendly for all types of concert goers.  You’ve got everything from hammered frat-boys to tight-jeaned hipsters to toddling children all co-existing harmoniously.  Also, no matter where you at Marymoor – toilet, food line, joint-smoking corner – you can hear the music and loudly.  I’ve never felt more comfortable at a festival.



Flight of the Conchords::Shawn Brackbill

2.  I’ve never seen a reunion show before.  I’m not old enough to be super excited when fucking Boston or a reunited Styx come roaring in to town, and in truth, I’ve always been pretty skeptical, even negative, about the whole idea.  Sub Pop changed that for me.  Seaweed was the first act of the day I caught (what, a man needs to drink some cheap beer in the grass next to his car before entering a music festival, it’s one of the Ten Commandments … or something) and all of my worries about bands reuniting fell to the side.  These weren’t bitter old grunge-veterans churning out a tired set for a measly crowd, these were genuinely happy musicians blasting through a set of early-90s sludge-punk to a fairly adoring fan.  I don’t know if it was the third beer of the day or how much I enjoyed Seaweed’s set, but I was wearing a pretty solid shit-eater when the band was through.


July 10, 2008

Noah’s Daily Choice: No Age – Teen Creeps


You know what I’m excited about this weekend?

SP20.  Duh.

Though I’ve spake to many a die-hard music fan who’s forsworn the event for some ridiculous reason (distance, crowds, generally lack of cajones), this is going to be the event of the summer concert season (sorry Block Party, you’ll be fun too!) and I hang my head and shake a weary finger at those who deign to miss it.  Sub Pop’s been impressing the shit out of me for as long as I’ve been listening to interesting music (sadly, not as long as you’d think) and this collection of their brightest moments, past, present, and future is shaping up to be absolutely fantastic.

Though there are a handful of one-shot reunions occuring at old SP20 (The Vaselines, Green River, Red Red Meat) that’ll sure to draw the crowds I for one am damn near frothing at the bit to see L.A. no-wavers No Age.  Truth be told, when I first chanced up Weirdo Rippers, the first album by this noisy little duo I could barely understand what was going on.  The layers of distortion and buried melodies washed over me, leaving me confused and not entirely happy.  Yet, Sub Pop’s release of their second album Nouns absolutely blew me away.  I can’t say if it’s a slight change in production that better fused the noise with the pretty, or that I grew up somewhat as a music listener, but Nouns as quickly escalated in to one of my most spun discs this year and even spawned a deep, unknown love of a more lo-fi brand of music.

Thus, this weekends performance by the duo (a highly recommended performance at that) is near the top of my excitement.

Myspace: No Age

MP3: No Age – Teen Creeps