Tuesday, January 09, 2007

What I'm Listening To - Winter 2007

L&E Farms remembers:
We here at Lies Ampersand Exaggerations remember back to a simpler time, a time when pimply teenagers across the nation cobbled together crappy Peter Gabriel-heavy mix tapes on their mom's boom-box to impress that one special girl that they never had a chance of bedding. We remember pounding down Jolt cola after Jolt cola while trying to decide which pre-VanHalen Sammy Hagar song best encompassed our undying feelings of love (answer: I Can't Drive 55).
But did she ever notice? Hell no. She just threw your precious un-listened-to mix tape on the 'AV geek' pile and then went out with that mulleted douche-hole who drove that bitchin' IRock. Well, now she's totally fat, and has like 8 kids or something with Mr. IRock's half-retarded older brother, and her teeth were always kinda funny, so I guess we all dodged a collective bullet there, but still. We culled the rock, and it felt good, even if it was wasted on that total slut-bag.
But, alas, I digress; L&E Farms remembers back to the days before all the music was in the EmptyTree format and those EyeToons that the kids are nutty about nowadays. We remember back to the days of 45's and cassingles. We remember when music was a tangible object that you could hold in your hands (or in the case of gate-fold albums, hang on your wall). We remember back to the days before the Inter-tubes and e-Webs. Hell, now all music is just a bunch of random gobeldey-gook that's passed through a net and is stored in pods and whatnot... well, that and uber-PC Emo-core flexidiscs.
It ain't natural, I tell ya! We here at L&E use only use music harvested from the finest 500RPM compact discs (and other assorted fillers, when necessary) to put together our quarterly W.I.L.T. CD compilations. We sit down and add each track onto a CDR using an old Teac turn-of-the-century disc-to-disc burner. Why? Because the music tastes better that way, dummy.
We sweat and toil over in the Photoshop to bring you the finest and freshest artwork for these comps. Then we burn each disc out in real-time, print and cut each sleeve by hand, then write out extensive liner-notes and set up direct links until our fingers are worn down to bare bloody nubs.
Are there easier ways? Oh, hell yes! We do it this way all in the name of quality. You hear that, Chico? QUALITY. Well, quality and a severe case of obsessive compulsive disorder.
We just want your aural enjoyment to be special, because L&E farms remembers.
Liner Notes:
1) Screeching Weasel - Edge of the World
from the 2000 album Teen Punks In Heat
A five minute Screeching Weasel track to kick of a comp? What are you; fucking nutty? To which I reply: King telepathic goat vagina in my shoe!!! Actually, it's a great song and just fit in at the beginning (and immediately preceding the Slackers track) really well. I kicked off the Fall WILT with 4 songs under 2 minutes, so this is my penance.
2) The Slackers - Wasted Days
from the 2001 album Wasted Days
Great rocksteady track from the third-wave Ska band that tastes like a first-wave Ska band. That's good( I think). And, no, I haven't actually tasted any of them. It's a figure of speech, sheesh.
3) The Murder City Devils - Somebody Else's Baby
from the 2000 album In Name and Blood
It's rare that a band comes around and re-writes all the rules. The Murder City Devils were one of those bands. Back in the Late 90's when I first heard them, they sounded like nothing I'd ever heard before, but still reminded me a lot of the Detroit/New York late 60's/ early 70's proto-punk bands. The best I could ever do to sum them up was: "If The Heartbreakers were a Motown Band". That still doesn't nail it. All I know is that since they came around, a bunch of half-assed clones have followed.
4) The Anniversary - The Siren Sings
from the 2002 album Your Majesty
This song was written back in '01, so the lyric "Castaway from New Orleans" is just a poetic turn of phrase. Not a literal reference to some CHUD on a plywood raft.
This band has an uncanny knack for writing songs that get caught in your head. I love 'em; now if they could just write a song that would knock that fucking John Cougar "America" song outta there, I'd be eternally grateful.
5) Elliot Smith - King's Crossing
from the 2004 album From a Basement on a Hill
Well, this song already has the PDawg stamp of approval, so I must be on the right track.
This one almost didn't make the final cut, because I figured that including any song with a 2 minute intro was pushing my luck, and I had to cut about 6 songs from my original list. In the end, I realized that this song was way too good not to make it.
This is from Elliot Smith's final (posthumous) album, and the whole fucking record plays like his suicide note. Of all of them, this one is probably the most overt of the bunch. Kinda morbid, in retrospect, but still damned good.
6) Can - Vitamin C
from the 1972 album Ege Bamyasi
Can was one of the pioneers of the "Krautrock" movement. Kraftwerk was the other one. They were polar opposites; Can was loose and wild, Kraftwerk was cold and precise. I like 'em both, but still can't believe that no one remembers Can. Especially since I hear much more of their influence in the indie scene. Bah; Kids these days.
Note of interest: The band 'Mooney Suzuki' took their name from the surnames of the first two singers of Can (Malcolm Mooney and Damo Suzuki).
7) Manorexia - Helicobra
from the 2001 album volvox TURBO (no direct link)
Another groove-pounding track from J.G. Thirlwell (Foetus, Steroid Maximus, Venture Brothers soundtrack). As I've stated here before, this guy has been one of my musical heroes for going on 20 years.
When I conquer the world, I'll have this track blasting over the loudspeakers as I ride bare-chested astride a war-painted elephant, parading down Constitution avenue with the entrails of my enemies strewn across the blossoming cherry trees and their spines artfully arranged into my throne at the base of the Washington Monument. Just wait, it'll be soooo cool.
8) Lee Hazlewood - Dark in My Heart
from the 2002 compilation Complete MGM Recordings (1965-'67)
I got interested in Lee Hazlewood when I read that Boyd Rice (NON) was supposed to play a character based on him in the Anders movie Grace of My Heart. It piqued my interest, and I finally broke down and picked up this compilation of his stuff. It's pretty good stuff. Not quite country, not quite rock, not quite lounge - It's a totally different animal altogether. It's cheesy, yet serious - silly, yet profound. All I know is that I like it.
9) M.O.T.O. - We Are the Rats
from the 2002 album Kill MOTO
I really should have put this track in two spaces down, but I figured that this was a good place for a swift kick in the ass. Nothing sez 'kick in the ass' like MOTO. They're about as fancy as a lead pipe, but they hit just as hard.
10) Even In Blackouts - Darker Days
from the 2006 album Fall of the House of Even
Ed had once mentioned franchising The Magnificent Ambersons. I think John "Jughead" Pierson from Screeching Weasel beat him to it. The more Even in Blackouts records I hear, the more I'm convinced that there is more than one copy of 'Ambersongs' in the band's collective record collection. Maybe I'm crazy; you tell me. This is a damn fine track off of their new one.
11) The Methadones - Goodbye to You
from the 2006 album 21st Century Power Pop Riot
Annie Soviette takes the helm from Danny Vapid for this cover of a Scandal song. The Methadones are starting to get some (much deserved) recognition now, and it seems like they put out this collection of power-pop covers just because they wanted to (and could). It works - I've been listening to this thing over and over again.
12) The Lillingtons - All I Hear is Static
from the 2006 album The Too Late Show
This is the track that delayed the whole shebang. I accidentally dropped it, and just couldn't leave it off. This track is from the new (and final) Lillingtons record. I really, really, really wish that I'd have gotten a chance to see them before they disbanded, but it just wasn't in the cards. Double dammit!
13) Me First & the Gimme Gimmes - On the Road Again
from the 2006 album Love Their Country
The boys from NOFX, Lagwagon, Swingin' Utters, and Foo Fighters are back with a brand spankin' new Gimme Gimmes record. This time it's all country-western songs, and it rocks some serious ass. This track justifies inclusion for the intro alone.
14) Drag the River - Leavin' in the Morning
from the 2006 album It's Crazy
This is the first track from the new DtR record. It's perfect music for a long night drinkin', a long drive, or both.
15) Tom Waits - Long Way Home
from the 2006 limited-edition compilation Orphans
The hardest decision I had to make while making this mix was which of the 54 songs from Orphans to throw on this mix. I picked a good one, but there are many other songs from this set that I wish I could include. If you can still find a copy of the limited edition that hasn't had the price jacked WAY up, buy it.
16) Louden Wainwright III - Good Ship Venus
from the 2006 compilation Rogue's Gallery
Huge thanx go out to Mark and Jeanne for sending me out this comp. It has served me well on long roadtrips, and before many nights out drinkin'. Nothing like a bunch of bawdy sea-shanties to get ya in that pirate frame of mind. It's amazing that I haven't been arrested yet.
17) Mark Linskey - Blazing Souls
from the 2003(?) album Songs of Freedom (no link found)
I should just call Mark to get all of that missing information, but don't want to bother him over my gay little mix-tape. This album is comprised of a bunch of great solo-acoustic songs from my good buddy Mark (Hudson Falcons) Linksey. It's amazing looking over this tracklisting at how many bands on all of the WILT mixes are from people I met back in the 7DA days. Good times - Thank Christ they're over.
18) Neko Case - The Needle Has Landed
from the 2006 album Fox Confessor Brings the Flood
I'm really digging this new Neko Case record. So is Gundy, and The Girl, and my Mom, and.. I think that the universe just imploded.
19) Bad Astronaut - Disarm
from the 2002 album Houston: We Have a Drinking Problem
No, It's not a Smashing Pumpkins cover, Yeesh. You should know better.
Man, I love this song. Think 70's space-rock opera meets bay-area pop-punk. That's some tasty stuff, right there. Plus, it has one of my favorite lines from any song ever: I'm not cutting you down - I'm just carrying the axe. Fucking brilliant.
20) Faith No More - Just a Man
from the 1995 album King for a Day, Fool for a Lifetime
Ask a bunch of people who worked in record stores in the mid-90s to list their top 10 records of that decade, and I'll guarantee you that half of 'em will have Faith No More's 'Angel Dust' on that list. That was the first FNM record when Mike Patton had a firm grip on the reigns, and his madness was allowed to thrive. I liked that album so much that I bought (but rarely listened to) the 2 following FNM albums.
One day I got a wild hair, and decided to load the latter 2 discs, 'King' & 'Album of the Year', onto my iRiver. I was blown away at how good they sounded a decade later. This track is wonderful in it's simplicity. Hell, it could blend seamlessly into any Broadway musical sore, but beneath the full chorus you can feel the subversive undertones shining through.
21) Jason Webley - Icarus
from the 2004 album Only Just Beginning
I knew immediately that I had to include this song right after that Faith No More track. About 2 seconds after I decided to include 'Just A Man' I knew that 'Icarus' was to follow. Period - End - Set it in stone. Here's another superb track by Mr. Webley to add to the WILT coffers.
22) Electric Six - I Wish This Song Was Louder
from the 2006 album Switzerland
Holy Shit, what a great fucking song title! It's genius, I tell ya. I may be the highly suggestible type ( Yes... I... Am), but I cant get through this track without goosing up the volume knob just a bit. E6 is going back on tour (yet) again. Be sure to catch 'em when they hit your neck of the woods.
23) McLusky - Flysmoke
from the 2003 album My Pain & Sadness is More Sad & Painful Than Yours
I knew that I needed a seriously good song to end this WILT on. McLusky; Up to the plate. Home run - Game over. Done, done, and done. And be sure to remember: Only the lonely go out.

You know the drill: Send your address (if I don't already have it) to dclies(at)gmail.com, and I'll send you out a CD - If I do have your address, you still need to send in a request, so I'm not just sending these things out willy-nilly. As always, it's free of any charge, cuz you just can't hang a price on quality. Remember, I'm only doing 50 of these, and it's first come-first served. Hop to it, Chachi.

There were a shitload of tracks that I wanted to include on this one, that I just didn't have room for. Incidentally, I almost have the Spring WILT fleshed out. Pretty soon, I'll have to invent a new season in order to squeeze in another WILT.
Look for the "Sprinter" WILT sometime in Smarch.


Kim said...

Me please!

garv said...

I'm looking forward to the Thirwell track. As a fan of the Venture Bros., I've been meaning to pick up some of his solo stuff, especially the "Steroid Maximus" albums, but most of his music appears to be out-of-print and very expensive to pick up used.

DC Liar said...

Garv - Go to his site (via the link in the post), it's probably the easiest way to get it.
I've had really good luck finding his more mainstream stuff (Foetus, Wiseblood, Steroid Maximus)on Amazon too.
If you're looking for his older (1980's) stuff, go to Ebay with a high-limit platinum card (especially if you're lookin' for vinyl).

A good album to start with is Steroid Maximus 'Ectopia', especially if you're into the Venture stuff. A lot of it is cribbed from that album.

Live Rabbit Fur said...

If possible, please send a copy to the Borresen household. Could you address your 2007 version of the love-lorn mix tape to Chrisb, though? This is a further continuation of my man-on-man fantasy.

auftn said...

May we have a copy too, please?

By the way, you picked what has to be my favorite track from the pirate collection. I'm glad to hear it's been serving you well.

Chris B. said...

I think the new season should be know as "Balls". Winter, Spring, Balls, Summer, Autumn. Then you could put out a Balls W.I.L.T.

I think you already have the cover.

Even In Blackouts said...

I have never heard of Ambersongs. I have heard of the Orson Welles movie the Magnificent Amberson. But I don't think this is what you are talking about.

Althou The Amberson's story is very similar to the Poe story that this new record is based upon.

John Jughead

DC Liar said...

Jughead - Thanks for stopping by.
Magnificent Ambersons were a 90's band from DeKalb, IL.
Look over the posts in this comment field, and you'll have a good chunk of their line-up.
The Even In Blackouts albums remind me a lot of them. If you want to check out their stuff, ask Ed @ http://ajusted.blogspot.com/ to send you out a copy of Ambersongs, or check any used CD bin the next time EiB plays DeKalb.