Music Notes July 2011

July 31, 2011 at 2:43 pm (Uncategorized)

If it’s the last day of the month, it must be time for…

1. Urge Overkill – Rock n Roll Submarine

Man, has it been 16 years since Exit the Dragon?  The best thing a fan can usually hope for when a band reforms is that they don’t suck, but UO have actually produced a pretty good record which fits nicely into the earlier Urge canon of catchy tunes and gritty riffs. Long live arena punk!

2. Wire – Read and Burn (EPs)

The thinking man’s punk band? My favourite description of Wire was if the Ramones had read Cahiers du Cinema instead of Mad and listened to Brian Eno instead of the Ronettes.  And while Wire were part of that first wave of punk, they never stopped moving. The Read and Burn EPs were released in 2002 and 2009 (the first two in 2002), were a return to the manic energy of punk’s early rush, and with an energy that blows away many latter-day “punk” bands. Listen to them at Wire’s site where you can download lots of free stuff.

3. The La’s – BBC In Session

Hard to know if Lee Mavers ever found the sound he wanted for the La’s. After the release of their debut album, Mavers and the rest of the band immediately disavowed the record. The rest of the world however fell in love with it.  The BBC In Session  released in 2006 consists of 4 sessions the band did for the BBC between 1997 and 1990. I’m not sure how Mavers felt about the sound on these recordings, but there’s a certain freshness, a crispness on this one which makes it different from the album. (I actually prefer this version of “There She Goes.”) It’s a real treat and perfect for just about every situation where you want to listen to music.  

4. The Mo-Dettes – The Story So Far

Another post-punk band that sadly disappeared without leaving much of an impact. A couple of singles, a Peel session and this album and they were gone. Perhaps best known for the White Mice single, the Mo-Dettes had punk credibility: Guitarist Kate Corris nee Chaos was an original member of the Slits nad “Mad” Jane Corckford was the woman who bit future Pogue Shane MacGowan’s ear at a Pistols show.  Add to it Ramona Carlier from Switzerland and you had something that sounded rather different. Worth a listen. When was the last you owned a record with covers of the Rolling Stones and Edith Piaf?   

5. The Flamin Groovies – Slow Death

Brought to you by the good people at Norton, the Flamin Groovies unofficial releases are many and varied. This one however was OKed by the band. The first six cuts are demos from around the Shake Some Action period and the remaining four cuts are live odds and sods.  Demos are often just for fans, but this album is good enough to own on its own account. The version of Shake Some Action here is apparently Cyril Jordan’s favourite. (Slow Death is pretty amazing too). Only complaint – too short!

6. Devo – Something for Everyone

Half way through Devo’s set at the NXNE festival this year, I thought, hmm, these guys are pretty good. The electronica section of the show was catchy and the rock section pretty punk. So, I held out for a while, then got the new record. And it’s pretty good too, though more on the electronica side. Catchy, nutty.  I’m not a Devo fan of old (only bought the frist record), but I’m tempted to seek out some of those Devo bootlegs lying around the world.

7. Cat’s Eyes – Cat’s Eyes

I’ve mentioned Cat’s Eyes before, but this is their full length debut. The band consists of soprano Rachel Zeffira and Horrors singer Ferris Badwan, but the result is not what you’d expect from either.  Rather than a psyche-opera you get a sixties style pop. Like the earlier EP, the album has a lush dreamy feel, and is not recommended if you’re to be operating heavy equipment.

8. Junior Kimbough – You Better Run:  The Essential Junior Kimbrough

Swampy grumpy blues. Just listen to it, OK?

9. England’s Glory – Legendary Lost Album

Led by future Only One Peter Perrett, England’s Glory sank without a trace in pre-punk England. Perrett was a great songwriter (several songs here turn up as Only Ones’ songs), but the music lacks the urgency punk introduced into music. A curiosity more than an essential; still, a curiosity that will interest.

10.  Sloan – Peppermint EP

Not a big write-up. Last month, I mentioned Sloan’s debut album, Smeared. this month, I want to point people to their first EP Peppermint, which contains a better, to my ears, version of Underwhelmed.

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3 Comments

  1. lunarbone said,

    Sloan will be at Echo Beach on Aug.5 evening.
    Do you think they will have Peppermint? 🙂

    • fischerzed said,

      Oh very good. 🙂

      Underwhelmed is still in their set list these days.

  2. Kate corris | Albfarweststor said,

    […] Music Notes July 2011 « Notes from Underground6 days ago … Perhaps best known for the White Mice single, the Mo-Dettes had punk credibility : Guitarist Kate Corris nee Chaos was an original member of … […]

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