Garage Punk Jay Reatard’s Entire Band Quits; Jay Responds With “Band quit ! Fuck them ! They are boring rich kids who can’t play for ahit anyways .. Say hello to your ugly and boring wifes opps I mean …” – Jay Joins Billy Corgan As Musicians Most Unwilling To Admit Their Own Douchey-ness, In Light of Most Obviously Being Douche [Brooklyn Vegan]
Watch San Francisco’s Girls’ Frontman Christopher Owens Cover Daniel Johnston’s “True Love Will Find You In The End” – Match Made In Neurotically Depressed Heaven (Which I’d Imagine Looks a Lot Like An American Apparel) [Gorilla vs. Bear]
Fox News’s Glenn Beck Did Not Get Contacted By Muse to Retract His Praise; Elsewhere, This Story Irritates Me [NME]
German Electro Artist Ulrich Schnauss Sues Axl Rose For Ripping Off Two of His Compositions – I Somehow Feel Bad For Rose, Like a Lost Puppy, How Could He Know Any Better? [Idolator]
Brooklyn Self Proclaimed “Poet Laureat of Generation Y” Tao Lin, And Hipster Runoff Blogger Carles Release First Single As “Jesus Christ The Indie Band” – Stream It, Feel Ironic, Feel Self Aware, Feel Nothing, Realize That’s About As Deep As Mr. Lin Goes, Chuckle At Their Website [Gorilla vs. Bear]
compiled by Max Sebela
The end of August is inevitably a slow time of year. People, en masse, seem to start dragging their feet, trying to stop summer from coming to a halt. But not in the music biz. As this past week shows, musicians, big and small, are ready and raring to go for the fall. Announcements of new album releases were abundant. Ready for a listen the first day the leaves begin turning gold and brown will be Kyp Malone’s first release as a solo artist and Bon Iver’s first release as a non-solo artist, Daniel Johnston and Massive Attack are prepping albums for October, and November will bring us new material from 50 Cent, Nirvana, and many more. So see, summer’s impending end ain’t so bad after all…
by Elana Jacobs
Stream Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Frontwoman Karen O’s First Single Off Where The Wild Things Are Soundtrack – Features A Huge Children’s Sing-Along (Though, Those Kids Don’t Compete With Ryan Gosling’s) [MySpace]
Unheard Recordings By Folk Legend Woody Guthrie To Be Released As 4-Disc Boxed Set, My Dusty Road; Released August 25 [Brooklyn Vegan]
50 Cent Announces New Album Before I Self-Destruct Will Be Released in November; Packaged With His Directorial/Screenwriting Debut…Also, 50 Seems Unsure of What Music He Enjoys [Prefix]
Stream Battles Weirdo Tyondai Braxton’s Second Solo Single, “Platinum Rows” (It Sounds Like A Charlie Chaplin Film Soundtracked By A Speed Addict); Braxton’s Debut LP Central Market Released September 15 [Pitchfork]
compiled by Max Sebela
October 24, 2008
Fans of Daniel Johnston might agree that you make a choice when listening to the notoriously wacky songster’s music: to love, or to hate. Regardless of whether or not one is able to consciously “decide” how they feel about particular music, it’s hard to argue that Daniel Johnston is not a highly unique songwriter; one who deserves further listening, if upon first listen you’re leaning against love.
On that note, Johnston is taking his peculiar wares to the road in October for a bunch of European dates. John Dear Mowing club will provide support. Read more to see the dates…
More on Daniel Johnston Tours Europe
September 7, 2008
1994 | Atlantic
Serendipity worked for Daniel Johnston, although serendipity was healthily aided and abetted by the enthusiastic support of a gaggle of high-profile fans. Sonic Youth, Butthole Surfers, and David Bowie, among others, had sung his praise for years, but Johnston’s big “break” came when Kurt Cobain wore Johnston’s “Hi, How Are You?” t-shirt to the MTV Video Music Awards in 1992. Millions of people saw that show, and by proxy, millions of people saw that shirt, shuttling Johnston straight past radio and injecting him into the public conscious (subcutaneously, at least).
But what to do for an album, after the bidding war landed Johnston on Atlantic Records? Can a major label artist go back into his sister’s basement and create a follow-up on a poorly recorded chord organ? Apparently not. Butthole Surfer Paul Leary, fellow former Austinite and longtime proud fan of Johnston’s, was commissioned to produce. Along with Butthole King Coffey on drums, Leary played nearly all of the guitars and bass on Fun, presumably in an attempt to streamline Johnston’s sound and make it more palatable for a mass commercial radio audience.
Remember, this is 1994, the Butthole Surfers had streamlined their own sound way down from the squalling cacophony of their 80’s freakouts, and were mere months away from household name status with 1996’s “Pepper.” So the stretch is not that far off. With Fun, Johnston and Co. tried earnestly to make a commercially palatable record that also retained Johnston’s meek, childlike demeanor that endeared him to fans.
Did it work? Of course not. There is a very good reason that Johnston’s closest real brush with commercial success was when Mary Lou Lord’s cover of his “Speeding Motorcycle” was used in a Target commercial – Johnston’s charms, while bountiful, are an acquired taste for a specific palate. What you end up with on Fun is a mishmash of Johnston’s love songs and neuroses (done better elsewhere) and a churgling, electric/gentle acoustic tug-of-war from the Buttholes, et al., that never lets the album settle into a groove. It’s weird. All of the studio trickery makes the album clean, but it’s not good. And even though it’s not good, Fun is also not bad in the way elements of Johnston’s earlier homespun records charmingly were. They (the suits) got the “co-opting-mentally-unstable-artists” thing right (to similarly disastrous commercial results) a couple of years later when American Recordings let Wesley Willis do exactly what he always did. Fun, however, is recommended for completists only.
by Brook Pridemore