…that you’re supposed to be writing, how do you apply a unique touch? How do you take that discography on a tweakend (as the Chemical Brothers might not say)?
You flex your knowledge of things like THIS:
Check out this track listing:
Punch Drunk (Cripple Bastards) :30
First Of The Last Calls (Kina) 3:04
Ice Cold Ice (Lomas) 3:52
Too Much Spice (Shock Treatment) 2:10
I’m Not Interested (Acredine) 1:14
Signals From Above (Sottopressione) 1:43
Find Me (Punch Line) 3:53
Something I Learned Today (Tempo Zero) 2:12
In A Free Land (Kina) 3:06
I Apologize (Burning Defeat) 2:05
All Tensed Up (Acredine) 1:23
The Girl Who Lives On Heaven Hill
(Cripple Bastards) 3:11
I’ll Never Forget You (Sottopressione) 2:09
Standing By The Sea (Burning Defeat) 3:10
Flip Your Wig (Lomas) 2:16
Celebrated Summer (Punch Line) 3:49
Everything Falls Apart (Tempo Zero) 1:41
New Day Rising (Shock Treatment) 3:03
Here’s the real mind-melter:
That’s a 3-song CDEP by Anthrax….mid-90’s vintage. One of the three songs is a dead-on cover of Husker Du’s “Celebrated Summer”
Fun tidbit: A year or two prior to the release of this EP, Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante and guitarist Scott Ian were in a one-off Husker Du tribute band called “Du Huskers” – if anyone has a boot’d recording of this…get in touch….
Writers, have you ever written something factually-incorrect when all along, the truth was known and understood? My instinct, as a human being, is to blame the copy-editing process, but I’m the one that made the stupid mistake. Scott Ian is not the singer for Anthrax, despite being the most visible member. The mistake also destroyed the only bit of real humor in THIS FEATURE. Am I making another mistake by exposing my mistakes for prospective future editors to see…then move on from?
I was prepared to disagree with this writer, but because of extraneous variables (ex: a really humbling, suffocating, and stressful 1.5 years re: work and finances…September ’08 until about two weeks ago), but I am currently plagued with conflict when I write a negative review. Well, it’s always been there, but now I have two little Earles’ – one on each shoulder – each time I get out the knives. I will still defend music criticism (music writing that does NOT resemble publicity fluff), especially now that we actually need it for what it’s ideally designed to do. But I have written a ton of text that I now regret, and that ton is growing.
To get my head straight again, I just think about this:
These are scary times. Where is the great and hilarious criticism of a negative nature? It’s gone. Music criticism is not criticism anymore, it’s become publicity fluff. I recently read Byron Coley’s section in Wire…the capsule reviews of left-field stuff…and every review was POSITIVE. This man is one of the reasons I started writing about music. We are going to drown in mediocrity if something isn’t done, and done QUICK!
Warning: As a whole, this post is not a joke. There’s 100% truth to the primary point and stories I plan to relate…if I even end up making a point or relating any stories…this disclaimer is the first text to hit the page. Maybe I’ll just paste some reviews. Phone some shit in and act like you care…just so I can get back to selfish concerns like life’s iminent collapse. Or maybe I’ll….
…..decide NOT TO SLAP MY READERS IN THE FACE!! So, what’s this record collection abuse about? Well, you see, as I started to run into slower, problematic areas in the writing of my book (stuck on the last one now), my sleeping schedule started to change. Combine this with some prescribed medication, and you get two days up and one 10/11-hour crash. Then there’s the less frequent but far more horrifying three days up, 13/14-hour crash. This has been going on for what will remain an undisclosed amount of time. Put simply, I’m forcing myself into a somewhat-normal sleeping schedule; starting tonight! Oh, and back in September of 2008 there was this night in which my appendix became infected, and I ran a fever from about 3AM until post-op…some 15 hours later. That fever steadily increased, then skyrocketed when the offending organ actually ruptured while I was being prepped for surgery. I was told that it peaked at 104 – 105 degrees.
“But only for a few minutes, then we gave you a shot that brought it down to around 101 or 102,” the nurse offered, after noticing the wordless look of terror spreading across my face.
So what do these two situations have to do with one another? I blame both for my 1.5 years as a relapsed record addict. I also blame them for the times that the book has transformed into something that scares the living shit out of me. Hear that? 2009 was a motherfucker, as I’ve already been known to state, and it tried to stick some of its motherfucker-foot in the door in an attempt to ruin 2010. Hear that? That’s MY foot. I just put it down.
In order for a record to stay on the shelf, secure from the flash of my Nikon Coolpix, the following criteria must be met:
1. Being a reissue may unfairly guarantee immunity from “liquidation-consideration”…I need to do my studying-up and all.
2. It must be a special recording; a record I got inside of at some time, or continue to have an emotional dialogue with.
3. I will continue to collect and then hang onto certain types of records, such as my favorite bands or particularly challenging recordings that appeared on a major label in the 90’s. Examples of the former: V-3 – Photograph Burns, Melvins – Houdini, Steel Pole Bath Tub – Scars From Falling Down, Mercury Rev – Boces, etc. An example of the latter: Boredoms run on WEA, Morbid Angel – Covenant or Dominion, Carcass - Heartwork (also a fave), Swans’ one record on a major, Foetus’ one record on Sony, etc.
4. [Similar to #2] It must be a record I enjoy listening to on a regular or semi-regular basis, or a record that has a future in the heavy rotation stack due to a past in the same place.
This, my readers, LEAVES A LOT OF RECORDS. Remember, I have the record disease, or rather, I HAD the record disease. Stay tuned! The For Sale page is “under construction” as they say, because it’s your turn to make some bad decisions!
I’ve admitted awareness and serious concern re: my problem, but that doesn’t mean you have to!
Was on a roll there for a few days and, well, you know the drill. Ok, on with some pertinent issues:
** The following review is one that I will not be e-mailing to an editor.
The former band contributes a long guitar rave-up cock-tease. Like Bardo Pond or Serena Maneesh, minus the “cock-tease” and “sucking” parts. _______ sound exactly like the type of band that would call themselves that, therefore they’re the type of band that thinks a “[fairly-popular and awful action/crime film from 1990]“ reference is clever. Hello ______ or whoever might be the creative force behind such anti-cleverness: That time you stood on the bed to work the receiving-end of an 8-foot Graffix being lit by a bro-dawg, then went into the den where you and the fellows had a pant-pissing moment over a late-night showing of Point Break? Yeah, I know you almost browned-trouser when Zach or Ryan or Matt or the second Zach (undoubtedly known as “Zach II: The Electric Boogaloo”) let loose with some commentary that was the fucking funniest fucking thing ever, but that doesn’t mean that any aspect of this evening – repeated the country-over by thousands of flip-flop enthusiasts just like you – needs to be translated for public consumption. Go absorb some real humor and listen to more music, please. And “_________” doesn’t even need to be touched on. One look at the song title, and its two minutes in audio form immediately transforms “two-days-of-food-poisoning” or “Monday morning in the Planned Parenthood waiting room” into time spent wisely by the intelligent, on-the-level individual.
** I have decided against using “Cimarron Weekend Productions” as the name of my imprint/label/name-on-things-I-do. Felt like a good idea at the time, isn’t a “bad” idea, but doesn’t sit right for some reason…like it’s distorting what Dave and I did, or it’s a blatant nostalgia trip or whatnot. While I do want reissues to be a big focus, I also want to be free to do whatever I want. If I lost my marbles and released an Andrew Earles monologue record that became an underground punch-line for thirty years, I wouldn’t want people bugging Dunlap about it. Thing is, The Cimarron Weekend (the publication) was kind of pathetic before Dave joined me. Those staple-jobs with no photos? Some of my writing in those things is “sphincter-flexing” bad, if you get my drift (you probably do…considering metaphor-allergy). This doesn’t mean that I’m going to forget about my promise to put archival Cimarron Weekend content up here. Truthfully, if I could find an economical way to do it, I’d assemble all of the good stuff from the entire run, and self-publish a “Cimarron Weekend Reader” because sometimes I run across something written in those pages, by either one of us, that makes me have a “Wow, that was sort of brilliant” or some other version of ‘the proud moment’…especially in hindsight.
** This is the same issue continued. I just wanted it to look like I had more to say than I really do. So, what am I going to name it? Introducing Meritorious Productions! Yes, it’s antiquated and pretentious but it’s also true. I sincerely believe whatever I re-release or exhume to be deserving of that treatment. Plus, the word looks good in my favorite font. Let’s take a random stroll through my review pile….it’s all “Unread Records” and “Sweet Rot Records” and “Douchemaster” and “I’m a rock ‘n’ roll loser” and “I’m gonna make an obscure reference just to prove to the world that I’m a cobweb crotch” and various dumbing-down exercises or simple celebrations of real worthlessness or stupidity. Or it’s an animal, plant, or otherwise biological/zoological naming scheme, all of which encourages me to ask, “Why do you insist on advertising the problem of Creative Bankruptcy?” Man up, people. Show some balls, passion, and vision. Listen to more music, get some books in your living space, watch cable all day without settling on anything remotely reality-based, then ask yourself why my blog has taken a (temporary) spot on a particularly irritating and predictable soapbox all of the sudden.