Steward is the leader (guitarist,/vocalist/keyboard) of the band Boyracer, and this is his second solo full length. The stuff he does on his 2 solo records for 555 Recordings and the "Last Wasps Of Summer" single he has on Paris's Orgasm Records are far more interesting than the work of Boyracer, in my opinion. I like the description I read in the LP's insert: "Fuzzy beats,strummy guitars and deserate sense of someone trying to cling to their pop roots". Many really neat songs. One song (Cindy Two) extensively samples the B-52's "Dance This Mess Around", and another (Backpetal) Trio's "Da Da Da".The stuff is mostly instrumental except for low-key vocals & samples,and has an experimental modern electronic / drum n' bass feel to it.
January 12, 1999
Belle & Sebastian are the biggest grass-roots indy band ever, and still have all their integrity intact. If you've never heard them, the closest comparison would be a more modern Donavan. This is their latest EP, with 4 songs not on anything else.
From the Rough Guide to Rock "Originally called Halfnelson, Sparks were nobodies on their home turf who somehow came to the British public consciousness with their startling debut single, "This Town Aint Big Enough For Both Of Us" in 1974. Brothers Ron (keyboards) and Russell Mael (bass/vocals) - who turned out to be male models from LA - galvanized a placid Top Of The Pops, one staring manically over tin-pot keyboards with a Chaplin moustache, the other prancing his way through a vocal that was charming, if completely incomprehensible". Prior to that "startling debut single" Sparks had 2 records. We have the first LP at WZBC, and now we have the second, with the addition of this record. "Girl From Germany", Beaver O'Lindy" & "Whippings And Apologies" are as classic as any song Sparks have ever done. This LP was produced by Earle Mankey, who also played guitar in the band (his brother Jim played bass). The record came out on Todd Rundgren's Bearsville label, and has never been released on CD.
Last Stand was formed in Boston in December of 1984 by three ex-Noonday Underground members, T. Keenan, Pete Mulford, and Kathy Demarco. They teamed up with bassist Frank Schacht, whom Keenan payed with in an earlier band that originated the classic Noonday Underground song "Injun Joe", which Last Stand included in their live sets. Boston label Taang put out a split 7inch, with Last Stand's "Scum Guns" and Noonday Underground's "Injun Joe" in 1985 (taang4). This CD is a combination of Last Stand's "Faith In Fate" and "Approved Cuts" albums, and was originally released in England in 1988. Last Stand play 4/4 male vocal "Boston-Rock", of the type that stigmatized Boston's national reputation during the 80's, but precasting the punk rock explosion that happened in the US 2 years ago.
The B-side is a Fukuyama cover, and the A-side is the song that the 3 remix 12"s on Domino Records were based on. Both sides are instrumentals. Ganger are a Scottish band who have put out a lot of stuff and have become one of the fathers of European indie post-rock, along with bands like Mowgwai, Fridge, and many bands on the Kitty-Yo label. Ganger have no guitarists, but several bassists.
The A-side si my favorite thing from them. The sleeve warns "home portastudio recording" on the A-side and "home 8 track recording" on the B-side, but these veterans sound better in that setting than most bands do in a proper studio. Vocals throughout, almost a spacey pop.
Peter Ledebur told me the meaning of "Tube Bar", but I can't remember the story! What I do know is that this is the first release of a new label run by Turk of Prolapse fame. Turk is the person who handles all the mail and internet E-mail inquiries for Prolapse, and is their friend. He appears to be a keypin of the Leicester music scene, home of such great bands as John Sims (supposedly named after the name on a gravestone Mick Derrick ofProlapse has in his room), and other great labels, like "Fortuna Pop!". Beatglider have a mellower sound than you might expect, but the "Not For You" song really builds to a nice acoustic shoegazing climax.
This single has a pop-up sleeve as elaborate as the first 7inch we have from them. The sleeves for both their singles were done by Chris, who is half of the band. The other half is Julian Koster, who also plays in the live Neutral Milk Hotel and has appeared on releases by The Olivia Tremor Control and Elf Power.
This single is impossible to find here. I got it from Mail order. I was just reading about the Static Caravan label in the new issue of "Beware The Cat", which we have (magazine w/CD). It was mentioned along with a couple of other good UK labels such as Bad Jazz, yet I had never heard any Static Caravan singles. I'm grateful to have found this single for our library. This is now our third Wisdom of Harry release, joining the "Arabesque" 7inch and the "Staying In With the Wisdom Of Harry" EP. They also have a side project, the Ellis Island Sound 10", which we also have. Both songs are instrumentals. The A-side is electronicy, relaxing yet engaging. The B-side is like a variation of the theme of the A-side, but more drawn out and sparse.
This split single is "the fifth in an occasional series" of split singles on the ever-elusive (as far as distribution in the US) label Lissy's. Some UK labels with great releases, like the "Bad Jazz" label, do not have any distribution at all in the US, so you don't even worry about finding a record you hear about. You won't. But Lissy's records show up in the US, but usually at high prices (like the $6.99 this one cost) , or in scant quantities. The thing that always makes it worth the chase on these hard-to-find labels is the high quality of some of the releases, and the fact that stuff on them is unique to those releases. On this split single, the Matmos song blew me away. Matmos is a duo from SF, CA. They have an LP I've seen at Cambridge's Twisted Village Record store. I bought this for us for the Piano Magic song, but discovered a great flip in the process. Both songs are instrumentals, very electronic and meticulous. The Matmos side has interesting sounds, really moves, and it ends in a locked groove.