jueves, 24 de febrero de 2011

Sonic Youth - Dirty Boots (1991)

While there is little denying the title track's status as one of Sonic Youth's strongest songs from their early-'90s period, the bonus live recordings are the real reason to own the Dirty Boots CD single. The scorching versions of "White Kross," "Eric's Trip," and "Cinderella's Big Score" reaffirm the group's status as one of the strongest live acts amid the alternative rock movement. Furthermore, this EP also includes an unreleased instrumental song, titled "The Bedroom," which isn't anything special, though it does make for an interesting listen. Source: [AMG]

Sonic Youth - Dirty Boots

Track Listing
1. Dirty Boots (Edit)
2. White Cross (Live)
3. Eric's Trip
4. Cinderella's Big Score (Live)
5. Dirty Boots (Live)
6. Bedroom (Live)


miércoles, 23 de febrero de 2011

Sonic Youth - Goo (1990)

Any doubts as to the continuing relevance of Sonic Youth upon their jump to major-label status were quickly laid to rest by Goo, their follow-up to the monumental Daydream Nation. While paling in the shadow of its predecessor, the record is nevertheless a defiant call to arms against mainstream musical values; the Geffen logo adorning the disc is a moot point -- Goo is, if anything, a portrait of Sonic Youth at their most self-indulgently noisy and contentious, covering topics ranging from Karen Carpenter ("Tunic") to UFOs ("Disappearer") to dating Jesus' mom ("Mary-Christ"). Even Public Enemy's Chuck D joins the fracas on the single "Kool Thing," which teeters on the brink of a cultural breakthrough but falls just shy of the mark; the same could be said of Goo itself -- by no means a sellout, it nevertheless lacks the coherence and force of the group's finest work, and the opportunity to violently rattle the mainstream cage slips by. Source: [AMG]

Sonic Youth - Kool Thing

Track Listing
1. Dirty Boots
2. Tunic (Song for Karen)
3. Mary-Christ
4. Kool Thing
5. Mote
6. My Friend Goo
7. Disappearer
8. Mildred Pierce
9. Cinderella's Big Score
10. Scooter + Jinx
11. Titanium Exposé


sábado, 29 de enero de 2011

Superchunk - Hyper Enough (1995)

Superchunk - Detroit Has A Skyline (acoustic version)

Track Listing
1. Hyper Enough
2. Never Too Young to Smoke
3. Detroit Has a Skyline (Acoustic Version)


miércoles, 26 de enero de 2011

Superchunk - Here's Where the Strings Come In (1995)

Without changing their tensely wound, post-Hüsker Dü punk-pop style at all, Superchunk sound completely weary on Here's Where the Strings Come In. No longer do their nervous, amateurish songs sound energetic -- they sound tired and broken. This actually results in some really interesting music, as Mac McCaughan tries to reconcile his broken spirits with his passion for punk. These songs tend to have more resonance than by-the-books rave-ups like "Hyper Enough," no matter how well those are written, and they suggest that Superchunk may be better off if they decide to revamp their signature sound completely. Source: [AMG]

Superchunk - Hyper Enough

Track Listing
1. Hyper Enough
2. Silver Leaf and Snowy Tears
3. Yeah, It's Beautiful Here Too
4. Iron On
5. Sunshine State
6. Detroit Has a Skyline
7. Eastern Terminal
8. Animated Airplanes over Germany
9. Green Flowers, Blue Fish
10. Here's Where the Strings Come In
11. Certain Stars


miércoles, 19 de enero de 2011

The Afghan Whigs - Uptown Avondale (1992)

The Afghan Whigs' final recording for Sub Pop, Uptown Avondale is anything but a contractual obligation -- a five-track EP comprising four R&B covers and a remake of Congregation's unlisted bonus track "Milez Iz Ded" (here retitled "The Rebirth of the Cool"), it's a soulful, scorching collection that captures the band at their gritty best. Quickly dispelling any lingering doubts that Greg Dulli's soul-man aspirations are anything but genuine, the disc's covers of chestnuts like Freda Payne's "Band of Gold" and the Supremes' "Come See About Me" are remarkable, remaining true to the music's R&B roots but infused with the Whigs' noise-punk energy -- Dulli sings like a man possessed, rejuvenating this familiar material with both reverence and attitude. Source: [AMG]

The Afghan Whigs - Come See About Me

Track Listing
1. Band of Gold
2. True Love Travels on a Gravel Road
3. Come See About Me
4. Beware


The Afghan Whigs - Turn On The Water (1992)

The Afghan Whigs - Turn On The Water

Track Listing
1. Turn On The Water
2. Miles Iz Ded
3. Delta Kong
4. Chalk Outline


The Afghan Whigs - My World Is Empty Without You (1991)

The Afghan Whigs ankled the grunge comparisons and emerged as the best blue-eyed soul outfit of their generation with their cover of the Supremes' Motown classic "My World Is Empty Without You." Operating in a Curtis Mayfield-inspired falsetto fraught with a desperation and longing that Diana Ross never mustered, Greg Dulli delivers his most remarkable performance to date -- he and his bandmates are no Funk Brothers, of course, but their spectral, finely wrought arrangement deftly captures the Whigs' growing mastery of nuance and mood. A pair of LP tracks -- Congregation's ferocious "Conjure Me" and Up in It's sinuous "You My Flower" -- round out the package. Source: [AMG]

The Afghan Whigs - My World Is Empty Withou You

Track Listing
1. My World Is Empty Without You
2. Conjure Me
3. You My Flower


viernes, 24 de diciembre de 2010

Beat Happening - You Turn Me On (1992)

Beat Happening's final LP is also their best: concluding the emotional and musical progression begun with the minimalist innocence of their earliest work, You Turn Me On is a mature record of tremendous breadth and complexity. Where once the trio's songs were brief and bouncy, the nine tracks here are epic (several top out at over six minutes) and ambitious; produced in part by ex-Young Marble Giant Stuart Moxham (an obvious influence), the record's full, deep sound belies its bare-bones performances -- "Teenage Caveman" sports booming, primal drums perfectly suited to its title, while the propulsive "Noise" manufactures the illusion of a bassline where none ever existed. The most democratic record in an output founded on egalitarian ideals, You Turn Me On offers Heather Lewis' strongest songs ever -- her hypnotic nine-minute "Godsend" is the LP's heart and soul -- and she and Calvin Johnson even trade verses on the closing "Bury the Hammer." As for Calvin himself, his solo contributions are exceptional -- the spartan opener "Tiger Trap" is an evocative heartbreaker, and the title track is a fire-breathing corker. A masterpiece. Source: [AMG]

Beat Happening - Tiger Trap

Track Listing
1. Tiger Trap
2. Noise
3. Pinebox Derby
4. Teenage Caveman
5. Sleepy Head
6. You Turn Me On
7. Godsend
8. Hey Day
9. Bury the Hammer


jueves, 16 de diciembre de 2010

The Afghan Whigs - Black Soul Gentlemen (1994)

The Black Soul Gentlemen bootleg offers an okay radio broadcast from an Italian show during the Afghan Whigs' Gentlemen tour. The performance is decent, if a bit somewhat meandering, which pretty much comes with the territory of most Whigs shows. Singer/guitarist Greg Dulli injects enough barbs from to keep things interesting in lieu of the mediocre recording. Battling a language barrier and introducing "Retarded" to an inactive crowd, he muses, "This song is from our first record called Up in It. You ever heard of it...on Sub Pop? Does anybody care? No? Okay." Quality-wise, there's an uneven emphasis between the guitars of Dulli and Rick McCollum, and John Curley's bass gets completely lost from time to time. A major deciding factor in the purchase of Whigs' bootlegs is the covers; on most occasions, the track listings provide no indication of what they might be, since the Whigs often incorporated verses and snippets into their own material. Add uninformed bootleggers to the pot, and there you have the lack of info. Such is the case here. A fair amount of the lyrics to the Spinners' "I'll Be Around" is tucked inside of a breakdown during "Turn on the Water." Lyrics from Prince's "When Doves Cry" gets mixed into a nine-minute version of "You My Flower." And to a much lesser extent, Dulli throws in a couple lines from Dr. Dre's "Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang" during the Supremes' "My World Is Empty Without You," as well as Madonna's hop-to-it snips from "Into the Groove" and "Express Yourself" during a rip-roaring "Miles Iz Ded." As far as the overall set list is considered, it's favored toward Gentlemen, with a fair amount of attention paid to the records that preceded it. Source: [AMG]

The Afghan Whigs - Gentlemen

Track Listing
1. If I Were Going
2. Debonair
3. Turn on the Water
4. Gentlemen
5. Be Sweet
6. My World Is Empty Without You
7. When We Two Parted
8. Retarded Dulli
9. Fountain and Fairfax
10. Come See About Me
11. You My Flower
12. What Jail Is Like
13. Tonight
14. Miles Iz Ded


martes, 7 de diciembre de 2010

Buffalo Tom - Sleepy Eyed (1995)

Put Sleepy Eyed in your CD player, hit play, and prepare to be amazed -- "Tangerine," the lead-off cut, signals the brief but welcome return of "Dinosaur Jr. Jr." with two-and-three-quarters minutes of charging neo-grunge guitars and galloping drums, the likes of which you haven't heard from this band since Birdbrain. But, of course, Buffalo Tom sound a lot tighter, stronger, and more confident when they dig into the big shaggy dog rock than they did five years previous, and while they never get quite as rollicking as "Tangerine" again on Sleepy Eyed, cut for cut it's a far more direct and straightforward rock album than anything they'd managed since their creative breakthrough on Let Me Come Over. To some listeners, Sleepy Eyed might sound like a regression, moving back into noisy power trio mode after the more polished surfaces and intricate arrangements of Let Me Come Over and Big Red Letter Day, but play Sleepy Eyed back to back with Birdbrain and you'll be pleasantly surprised by the differences. Sleepy Eyed decisively proves Buffalo Tom write better hooks and better melodies, write smarter lyrics, and even rock harder than when they were still trying to find their way out from under J. Mascis' shadow, and they sound like they're having a great time just turning up the amps and letting rip, especially Bill Janovitz, whose rock-dude guitar outros are a hoot (and this is one band who I cannot begrudge for enjoying themselves every once in a while). On Sleepy Eyed, Buffalo Tom go back to the old neighborhood and show everybody how much bigger and stronger they've become -- it's sorta like a high school reunion, but louder and a lot more fun. Source: [AMG]

Buffalo Tom - Summer

Track Listing
1. Tangerine
2. Summer
3. Kitchen Door
4. Rules
5. It's You
6. When You Discover
7. Sunday Night
8. Your Stripes
9. Sparklers
10. Clobberred
11. Sundress
12. Twenty-Points
13. Souvenir
14. Crueler