May 6, 2010
2010 | Weemayk Music
The Antifolk group Elastic No-No Band is nothing if not prolific on Fustercluck!!!, their second studio album. Spread over two discs and over two hours, this record is a veritable smorgasbord of American folk and rock styles. These guys clearly love music and you’d be hard pressed to fault their energy or their execution. At its core, this record is simply a lot of fun. But it’s also a fairly extensive glimpse into the twisted mind of songwriter/singer Justin Remer (who writes for Jezebel Music) and a good platform for his off-the-wall sense of humor, as evidenced by the self-explanatory first single, “(The Shame About) Manboobs.”
Elastic No-No Band’s music, much like the other bands who make up the Antifolk scene that calls the East Village’s Sidewalk Café home, is quite possibly an acquired taste, but one well worth the plunge. The No-No Band is like the corn ice cream at Sundaes & Cones. It sounds like it shouldn’t work, but after you have the sample spoonful, you find yourself ordering a whole cone.
Disc one – let’s call it “Fuster” – opens with a goofy cut from an old scratchy fitness record, and that sets the tone. Fuster is a workout of sorts, an aerobic and bouncy journey through American music that hopscotches from banjo folk to trashy indie to old-school country…you get the picture. The crunchy fuzz of “The Color Machine” stands out on Fuster, a meatball of a track that mashes a stripped down Stooges groove with the dirty alt-rock of Lou Barlow’s Folk Implosion project. It’s catchy as hell and a bit of a departure from the rest of the record. Brook Pridemore (who also writes for Jezebel Music) co-wrote the track and sings lead, which isn’t as distracting as you’d think. since one of the album’s strengths is that the dozen or so guests who join in with the No-No Band blend in seamlessly. Debe Dalton, banjo player extraordinaire, is all over both discs and the album is all the better for it. Her banjo picking is timeless, as is her voice. Dalton and Remer’s duet of the old traditional song “There’s A Hole In the Bucket” is particularly funny and sweet.
Mary Travers, Known For Her Work in Classic Folk Group Peter, Paul, and Mary, Passes Away at 72 [Brooklyn Vegan]
Billy Corgan Announces 44-Track Smashing Pumpkins Album Called Teargarden by Kaleidyscope; I Set Fire to a Copy of Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness In Attempt to Feel Something [Spin]
Stream Animal Collective’s “Banshee Beat” vs. Beach Boys’ “I’m Waiting for the Day” – If Animal Collective Won That Fight, They Would Still Lose, As They Would Cease To Exist In That Back To The Future Paradox Way [Gorilla vs. Bear]
Kermit the Frog Tells People That He Is Not Dating Lady Gaga; People Fails at Differentiating Between “People” and Fuzzy, Marionette Puppets (Due to Deteriorating Eyesight of Journalism? Eh?!) [Idolator]
Watch Chicago’s Andrew Bird and Brooklyn’s St. Vincent Collaborate in La Blogotheque; Experience Long Performance of Pure, Unadulterated Pleasantness; Feel Kind of Sick Afterward [Pitchfork]
The Clash’s Mick Jones and Topper Headon Rerecord The Clash’s “Jail Guitar Doors” With Billy Bragg and Prison Inmates – Headline Gets Progressively More Awesome Every Word Added [NME]
Grizzly Bear Joins Bon Iver, Thom Yorke, and Death Cab for Cutie on Twilight Sequel New Moon’s Soundtrack; “Cool” Listeners Finally Forced to Admit That The Bands Are Listened to By Shit Tons of People (Note Again: Distinction Between People And Puppets) [Prefix]
compiled by Max Sebela
August 1, 2008
Pacific Ocean Blue: Legacy Edition
1977 | Caribou Records; 2008 | Legacy Recordings
Over the past year, I’ve become increasingly obsessed with The Beach Boys. Not their early hits, so much; I’ve been more obsessed with the later psychedelic era around Pet Sounds, and with the weirdness that ensued in the aftermath of Brian Wilson’s departure from the group. Throughout the 70’s especially, The Beach Boys seemed to be trying to simultaneously go more psychedelic and more earnest. Hence, “classic” couplets like “If Mars had life on it, I’d find my wife on it,” and an eventual Brian Wilson rap album (thankfully shelved).
Around the time that The Boys released 15 Big Ones, drummer Dennis Wilson, something of the George Harrison of the group, released his lone solo album, Pacific Ocean Blue. Its follow up, Bambu, was abandoned, incomplete, for several years before Wilson drowned in 1983. Incredible as it may seem, the legend around these two albums has remained and grown over the past thirty-odd years, and reissue/reunion/nostalgia-crazed music fans have clamored long enough, and Pacific Ocean Blue is available on Compact Disc for the first time.
More on Record Review: Pacific Ocean Blue