Sunday, July 29, 2007

Do You Think All Those Big Black And Little Silver Shinny Discs Are Here For Decoration??

So it happens again. If I had a nickel for every time I heard "Yeah I'm getting tired of playing the same bands, but I don't know anything about a lot of the stuff in the library" or "but I don't have time to listen to all this stuff", Graduate school would be paid off and my migration to New Zealand would be finalized 'cause I'd have mad cash.

So with out further adieu to turn you on to something new- here's Bryan G's If you like this, you'll probably like this fun list. Most, if not all, of these artists are in the WMUA library.

If You Like: Wilco
You Will Probably Like: Souled American, Giant Sand, The Waco Brothers, Centro-matic
If You Like: The Pixies
You Will Probably Like: MOTO, Eleventh Dream Day, Antietam, The Clean
If You Like: They Might Be Giants
You Will Probably Like: Tall Dwarfs, Gerty Farish, Eggs, Dairy Queen Empire
If You Like: Interpol
You Will Probably Like: The Chameleons UK, Springhouse, For Against, Tone
If You Like: The White Stripes
You Will Probably Like: The King Kahn & BBQ Show, Jay Retard, Thee Headcoats\Headcotees, The Mummies
If You Like: Bright Eyes
You Will Probably Like: Barbara Manning, Pink Reason, The Naysayer, Simon Joyner
If You Like: The Beatles
You Will Probably Like: The Green Pajamas, Dispomaniacs, Abunai!, The Lucky Bishops
If You Like: Black Sabbath
You Will Probably Like: Major Stars, The Bevis Frond, High Rise, Boris

Face it-your not going learn about music unless you listen to it. And you don't have to be a complete geek like some of us who have records spinnin' 24-7. Take 15 minutes and grab some things you never heard of and listen to them. Thank me later by giving me the records you don't want.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Caught Licking Leather.

I've decided to put together my twin passions of art criticism & rock snobbery in the form of a semi-regular feature in this blog dedicated to excellent albums with excellent album covers. I'm certainly guilty of having slept on really awesome records in the past simply because I thought that their respective bands' taste in graphic design was atrocious, so I figured I'd accentuate the positive for once.

Aside from the fact that I really get a kick out of saying the name "Pissed Jeans" on the radio week after week, these guys are also proudly carrying the torch of early to mid-90s ugly rock in the tradition of the Jesus Lizard & most things that Steve Albini has laid his hands on, which I am most definitely okay with. I've noticed that this revivalism of the Touch and Go catalog from the Clinton era has been in full swing lately, to mixed results, but these Pissed Jeans fellows have gotten the nastiness & the noise down on their new album, Hope For Men, in a way that will make you say "I can't believe it's not David Yow". Major props are due to any band that can make a song about scrapbooking or ice cream sound like the most fucked up, demented thing this side of Nick Cave's house.

And that album cover! I'm a big fan of minimalism in record layouts & this is a perfect example of "less-is-more" done right. Seriously folks, you're not winning any points by using "wacky" fonts & every pattern in your MS Paint application (unless of course you're putting out an album on Load Records). Replace the work pants with chaps & this could almost be a Robert Mapplethorpe photograph, which I mean in the best possible way. Clean, uncluttered layout, elegant black & white color scheme, simple vertical emphasis, adorable display of man-love. What more could you ask for? It's downright iconic in that first Velvet Underground album kind of way. (Brief sidenote: That visible fellow on the cover is Pissed Jeans drummer Sean McGuinness, who was previously in the vastly underrated & ridiculously awesome Washington, DC band Navies, who were more "math rock"/Dischord Records-styled, but also well worth checking out.)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

When It Happens That's It

We here at the [un]official WMUA blog would like to give [un]equal coverage to all types of music stylings. Undeniably, hip hop and rap are going to pop up here, which is something of a problem in that the current contributors are not your well known Sway or The Fader*. So that's where you can come in. School us. Old school us. The majority of the online webzines have championed the same Clipse/Ghostface/Lil Wayne/Kanye West/Spank Rock acts, which we could do. But we want to provide for other hip hop we're digging or that you might be. So get in touch.

That being said, I just got hold of the new Camp Lo album, which I've heard some things about. Fingers crossed.

*At this point I'd like to make a special comment to the fine people at Fader. You provide our station with a great magazine every month, but one thing that really gets on my nerves is your support for mediocre rap artists. Collie Buddz? Bone Thugs? Sure, you'll throw love to the aforementioned safety acts, but then you start giving questionable love to acts that have fizzled out years ago (and deservedly so) or up and comers that have absolutely nothing new to offer** (looking at you Akon). And you act like we just don't get it. It reminds me of people who think Freddy Got Fingered is just absolute genius. Heresy!

**Additionally, I'd like to make a quick comment about Rihanna's "Umbrella" song which is apparently all that. Why?! Flimsy, sleepwalking Jay-Z guest spot, run-of-the-mill softy verses and an unbearable chorus. I think I'm the only person deeply annoyed when she sings "Umbrella ella ella eh eh eh."

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Here We Go.

So I guess this is going to be the first post in our little blog. Excessive ramblings & heated arguments will be soon to follow, rest assured ("Soundin' Off: Eric v. Erika" should be particularly intriguing).

The WMUA Tuesday/Friday crew (aka Eric, Erika & Bryan) was representing at the Middle East in Cambridge this past weekend to witness the rock spectacle that was Jay Reatard & The Ponys, live. If anyone was unfortunate enough to catch Awkward Noise with any sort of regularity last semester, you'll probably know how thoroughly nutty I was for Blood Visions, the album that Mister Reatard released at the end of last year on the great In The Red record label (arguably the most kick-ass record of 2006 - if you don't have it yet, don't be a fool & get it, now). Before Jay's set, Eric made a comment to the effect of "I bet he goes through his entire catalog in forty minutes". No way. He instead tore through about 75% of his songs in NINETEEN MINUTES. I danced my ass off & in spite of having to contend with an extremely drunk girl repeatedly groping my chest for the majority of the set, it was nineteen minutes of pure bliss. Do yourself a favor & pick up anything this man puts out (and good luck keeping up with everything). His new EP, "Night of Broken Glass", is particularly excellent & Awkward Noise endorsed. Oh, and a big "Fuck You" to everyone who elbowed me away from the merch table & thwarted my attempts to snag some of those impossible-to-find singles. Jerks.

I personally felt that the Ponys were doomed to have an impossible time following Jay Reatard, which is a shame given that I've been pretty keen on their new Matador album, Turn The Lights Out. On the way to the show, the three of us were talking about how the Ponys are sort of like a mixtape of all of the big "college rock" bands of the late 70s/early-mid 80s (see: Talking Heads, Sonic Youth, The Pixies, et al), which is meant in the best possible way. Plus, I was kind of stoked on how totally grunge their lead singer looked. They were pretty great, but unfortunately by mind was a total blur after Jay kicked my ass. So I'll just say that you should show them some love & pick up their new record (as well as their earlier shit on the afformentioned In The Red). I'll even momentarily put aside my feelings toward the intentional mispelling of their band name.