Monday, November 25, 2013

A Personal Message from Zardoz, Plus Video Roundup #2

We got 99 posts and, uh, this is one. I'm going to let Mr. Rambo have the centennial post, but before the videos, I just want to say a little something in the holiday spirit.

I'm not sure when exactly I found Arthur Rambo's blog. Back then it was called He/Sheattle. I think it was around the time of the Doomsday 1999 post. I'd loved that band, and was trying to find out what became of them. (I did find, eventually, that the charismatic frontman Zack Carlson moved to Texas, worked with the amazing film fans at the Alamo Drafthouse, and, oh yeah, WROTE THE BOOK ON PUNKS IN FILM.)

I poked around the previous posts, and added it to my Google reader. It didn't take long for me to notice that Arthur was posting about a lot of bands that I knew at some level personally around high school and college. Raft of Dead Monkeys, The Prom, Drowning in Lethe, The Vogue, Soiled Doves, Suffering and the Hideous Thieves. The list goes on. Once he posted about March 15th and Portal, I knew something was up. Either I knew Arthur or I WAS Arthur. I contacted him, and as it turns out, I wasn't him, but I did indeed know him. Let's just say we had once shared a fleeting affinity for lawn bowling. Longish story. So anyway, before long I was in the proverbial Wonkavator, posting about my favorite things, from the lone album by Display (who, unbeknownst to me when I wrote the post, were actually back together after nearly 10 years and a few months away from playing shows) to the Christmas EP by Fishboy and Carleen Jean Death Machine.

Of my 19 posts, the most popular one is clearly the unreleased Jough Dawn Baker LP. As far as I know, this had only been in the hands of friends of the band, and we were fortunate enough to be the first blog to post it online. This is the kind of thing that gets me excited about posting here. It's our hope that those of you who like this blog will check out and like our Facebook page (we post extra stuff there), tell your friends, and mostly importantly, SHARE YOUR STUFF WITH US. Demos, unreleased/unfinished albums, self-released records, scans of flyers, stickers, photos of shows, VHS tapes, whatever you have. If you can't get it into a digital format, we can help. We just want to be a conduit for all the amazing post-grunge music. This is for everyone who spent their nights at the Old Firehouse, The Grange, Ground Zero, The Velvet Elvis, RKCNDY, and The Paradox.

So, I guess this has turned into my Thanksgiving post. I'm thankful for Arthur for inviting me to write here, for all the people who've made the great music we get to share, and for you, for sharing our love of this stuff.

Now, as inferred by the title of this post, for those who don't haven't liked us on Facebook or may have missed some posts, here's the second batch of videos I've posted from my own VHS tapes.

Raft of Dead Monkeys - Reunion show 1-03-04 at Studio 7

Suffering and the Hideous Thieves - Las Vegas 9-23-03

Roadside Monument - Vancouver 11-13-97 (plus the set that night from the band they opened for, The Promise Ring.)

Pedro the Lion - Vancouver, B.C. 1/31/98 

Pedro the Lion - Vancouver, B.C. 10/11/98

Pedro the Lion - Seattle 6/25/99

The Rapture 10-01-2001 at The Paradox. A bit of a cheat, but they were a Seattle band a couple years before this show.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Rats and Children - Demo tape

Rats and Children or Dovetail or whatever name we happened to be arguing about during our brief existence was a sloppy political punk band that I played in with a some high school friends during the Winter of 2000. I remember I was sitting at home one weekend, probably watching t.v. or something when I heard a knock on the door. Four of the buddies that I ate lunch with every day were standing there. "You wanna play drums in a band?" one of them asked me. "Sure," I said. And with that they unloaded a bass, a guitar and a couple of practice amps and we set up next to the drums and p.a. in my basement.

Musically, we were all coming at it from totally different places - the singers wanted to be The Blood Brothers and one of them also seemed dead set on being the next Jello Biafra, the bass player had been obsessed with Rancid & was really into the Subhumans, the guitarist was into Melt Banana, Judy Garland & the opera Carmina Burana and I was on an 80's new wave, San Diego screamo and The Doors kick. We'd all met each other at various points leading up to forming the band over a mutual love of punk rock, rebellion and feeling like social outcasts, the typical high schoolers-forming-a-band cliché.

When the group got started, we were all hanging out, reading zines & Zinn and sharing tapes. I remember us listening to stuff like Crass, Conflict, Flux of Pink Indians, Zounds, EC8OR, maybe even some Prince... we had vague intentions of being a 'peace punk' band but, aside from some of the patches we'd sewn to our clothes and the overtly political lyrics, I don't think it ever really ended up being that. Basically, it was a weird mix that kind of worked for little while.

The first five tracks on this tape were recorded on a strategically placed boombox during one of our early practices - Dec. 3rd, 2000 according to my notes on the tape. The highlights include our cover of "Breakin' the Law" sandwiched in between a Spice Girls medley and, arguably, our best original song "Pickled Babies." The sixth and final track, "Socialists For Nader," is from a different tape and it serves as a very rough idea for a new song that never fully came to be - before devolving into an impromptu partial cover of Atari Teenage Riot's "Revolution Action." I think it was probably recorded at our final practice around the beginning of '01.

The reasons the band fell apart were numerous and also pretty typical but in the end we just weren't getting along. I've heard it said that the best way to ruin a friendship is to live with someone but, in my experience, another surefire way to test that bond is to play together in a band - especially one in which there's no clear musical direction and several clashing egos. Though we tried, we never played any shows and only a handful of people ever saw us rehearse or even heard this tape. I don't know if there will be much interest in this slice of goofy, amateurish, noisy punk rock but for me it's something I'm still glad to have been a part of.
-Oliver aka Arthur Rambo

Rats and Children demo

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Videos, Videos, Videos

We've been busy digitizing video tapes of old shows, and posting them one by one on our Facebook page. These are all videos shot by us or by friends back in the day. They have not been on Youtube previously. More to come, and more-er to come if you have stuff to share. We could even digitize tapes for you if it's stuff worth posting.

Like our page to see the newest videos as they arrive, and feel free to leave a comment or send us a Facebook message if you have video or audio you'd like to share, and tell your friends if you want to see what this community can uncover. We've been told that all RKCNDY shows were videotaped. Any leads on those?

Alright, without further ado, here's a roundup of what's been posted so far.

The final Raft of Dead Monkeys show, not counting the one-off reunion show, which I also have, and will post later.

If you went to the Tri-Way Grange a lot in the late 90s, there's a good chance you saw Luner Lander. If you're reading this post, there's a 100% chance you are seeing Luner Lander. 

Before Parenthetical Girls, there was Swastika Girls. Here's a song from their second show ever, featuring Eric Yates (Portal, Male/Female) on the left and Jeremy Cooper (Display, The Past) on the right. The song was later on the debut Parenthetical Girls EP.

I filmed nearly all of FCS North's Bumbershoot set in 2001 before my battery died. I used to see these guys play all the time. Not sure what they thought of themselves, but we thought of them as Seattle's kings of post-rock.

It's always interesting to see an effects-heavy band play without any of those layers. Here's an early Display show, their only acoustic set, thrown together for an acoustic-themed house show. 

Here's a 2003 set from Chromatics, during one of the lineup phases after everyone not named Adam Miller left to form Shoplifting, and before Johnny Jewel joined the band. I believe it's Nat Sahlstrom on bass and Ron Avila (Get Hustle, Antioch Arrow, etc) drumming.

The final show from Jim Paschall and Jeremy Cooper's pre-Display band, The Past.

Bonus video: video: Black Eyes at the CoCA in 2003. Though not a Seattle band, this show was part of a series of amazing shows put together by Parenthetical Girls' Zac Pennington, who handles the opening remarks here. If you attended these Slender Means Society or Loss Leader shows, particularly the all-day themed event shows at Secluded Alley Works, we'd love to see whatever pictures or videos you have. Carrie Brownstein's first-ever solo show at the lady-focused one, the kissing booth at the love one, the geodesic dome and costumes at the post-apocalyptic one, the one where Phil Elvrum (pre-Elverum) played the last few songs of his set while hoisted 10 feet in the air, upside down, held up by audience members with a rope and pulley? Those were amazing shows

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Male/Female - First show since 2007

When Jim Paschall moved back to Seattle recently, he didn't just get Display back together, he also un-dormanted (I swear that's a word. Go ahead and challenge, man, you're just gonna lose a turn.) his other band from the same era, Male/Female. Initially a side project where he could play mainly guitar (he played bass in Display), Male/Female continued after the breakup of Display, and released one (to my knowledge) CD-R EP in 2006, Slow it Down in the Mineral Bath. 
Along with Paschall, the art noise kraut groove punk foursome comprised Eric Yates, formerly of Portal and recently of Tit Pig, on synths, bass, and sometimes guitar, Emily Lohuis on drums (now Emily Moore, as she is married to Display's drummer Danny, thus obligating them to regular marital drum-offs), and John from the New Avenues, whose guitar duties have been handed over to Colby Ford for M/F V2.

Download the 2006 EP here. Go to their Bandcamp site to hear a few more, including the one embedded below, a personal favorite.

Male/Female play The Black Lodge this Saturday, August 17th, with Grave Matters and Sweet Weapons. 9pm.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Prom - Final Demos

The Prom that appeared on Barsuk records consisted of Omaha transplants James Mendenhall at the piano and David Broecker on bass, along with Joel Brown lightly pounding the proverbial skins. At some point following The Prom's last released album, 2002's Under the Same Stars, Brown left and was replaced by Kevin Barrans, who in the years since has gone from what I can only assume from this picture is a Harlem Globetrotters understudy role to playing in Suffering and the Hideous Thieves, The Maldives, Sons of Warren Oates, and this lottery ad (look for the ZZTop beard). In addition, the trio recruited Justin Wilmore, marking the first time the band regularly included guitar. Around the same time, Wilmore played bass for future Pickwick member Kory Kruckenberg's Deardarling project.

Though the new format re-energized Mendenhall's songwriting, his apparent depression and other internal struggles made the project unsustainable. Track 3, the most intense song in the band's catalogue has the line, "Someone please stop me/I fear I'll kill myself", and along with the screamed "I gotta keep moving" at the end, the delivery makes it clear that he was in a really rough state at the time. The directness of the whole song is quite startling, and makes for quite a switch for the band that recorded Under the Same Stars.

There are 7 tracks here, half are still without vocals. I believe these were recorded in early 2004, and to my knowledge, the unfinished songs were never completed.

Download the demos here.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Hero Killer King - When Wanting Becomes Needing

I found this cd at Goodwill the other day and picked it up because I remembered the band name and they thanked Harkonen on the lyric sheet. Now, I know I saw HKK at least once, there's a flier on the facebook page from a show at Ground Zero, but The Powers of Darkness Shall Rain Blood Upon This City For 500 Years is the only band I have any actual memory of seeing that night - and this is probably due having gotten stoned out my mind with some friends while celebrating a birthday before the show. Anyways, I know nothing about these guys but if you like the harder, screamier stuff that gets shared around here, you should check this one out

Hero Killer King - When Wanting Becomes Needing

Monday, April 1, 2013

Lo-Life: Early Tapes from Damien Jurado

Lo-Life was an experimental folk/pop/indie/art project that essentially served as the solo debut of a young Damien Jurado (with help from Yu-Kim and Nadine Lewis). Self released on cassette via his Casa Records, and as the name implies, very lo-fi in its production aesthetic (both physically and sonically), these two tapes are chock full of songs of both the full and impressionistic variety. Restarts and recorder clicks are par for the course. There are sound collage interludes, answering machine messages, and a lot of lovely analog distortion. These really give you a portrait of a young artist finding his voice, full of joy and ideas and restless creative energy.
I don't know exactly when these came out, but the second tape has material recorded in 1994 and early '96.

Vermilion post updated - added second demo tape

I finally got around to creating the separate mp3's for my other Vermilion tape, and have updated my earlier Vermilion post. Go there, or just download the tape directly here.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Need - Live @ RKCNDY 9/21/98

This coming Saturday, March 30th, Behead The Prophet and The Need are playing at the Vera Project in Seattle. In my excitement for and in celebration of this upcoming show, I'm planning on doing a few posts this week that are specific to those bands.

First up, we have a live set by The Need that was recorded at RKCNDY on 9/21/98, which was just about a year before that club sadly closed it's doors. The lineup that night also included Built to Spill and Modest Mouse but this is the only audio from that show I've ever come across. If you know The Need, you know what to expect but in case you don't here's a brief description: artsy, no-wave, post punk.


Monday, March 18, 2013

White Jazz - The 4th Practice

My buddy Benson found this tape at Everyday Music up on Capitol Hill a while back and was gracious enough to let me borrow it for inclusion here. White Jazz weren't around for too long and almost every bit of information I found was from an online show write up from The Stranger in August of '09, which is where I've taken this descriptive paragraph from:

"White Jazz are a new (dare I say super-)group featuring Brandon Nakamura of Teen Cthulhu/Doomsday 1999, Jon Weisnewski of Akimbo, Jeff McNulty of BlöödHag, and Jared Burke Eglington of Patrol. You might expect a band with such a pedigree to combine competently terrorizing metal riffs with a tongue-in-cheek humor meant to deflate not only the metal tough-guy aesthetic, but also themselves. And you'd be right: The band formed to open a show for Pig Destroyer, and they played the show "in silk kimonos and underwear just to bum people out," according to Nakamura. He continues: "We're doing this as a tribute to bands like Excruciating Terror, Crom, and other bands that just destroy basements, ruin lives, and never say sorry." No apologies necessary, guys."

The 4th Practice was released by Wall of Dogs and serves as, I believe, the only available recordings of this all-too-brief unholy musical alliance. I've failed to be able to separate the tracks on this release as many of them run together and I don't believe the tracklisting on the label to be correct, but the whole thing weighs in at just under 10 minutes so you should be able to enjoy it in it's entirety.

White Jazz

Saturday, March 9, 2013

All About Friends compilation

All About Friends was a zine from Washington State, USA. Issue 5 was printed the same size as the CD, and contains 50 pages of photographs, as well as the tracking info.

1. C.R. - Moss
2. Botch - Rock Lobster (B-52's cover)
3. Impel - Call It What You Will
4. nineironspitfire - Dead (Napalm Death cover)
5. Screwjack - Artifact
6. Threadbare - Vitality (Beyond cover)
7. Coalesce - Cutting Away (Undertow cover)
8. Indecision - Slave
9. Trial - Crucified (Iron Cross cover)
10. State Route 522 - Jumpin' Someone Else's Train (The Cure cover)
11. Jough Dawn Baker - Five Twenty Four (Rage Against the Machine cover)

All About Friends

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Backstabbers - American Teenage Rock 'n Roll

I don't know if The Backstabbers were considered a sort of 'little brother' band to The Catheters by anyone else but that's how I always thought of them. That's not to belittle their musical contributions, they were definitely good at what they did, it's just that the two bands had a bit of an age difference, played a similar style of music and always seemed be sharing a bill. I don't know what these guys went on to do afterwards but this EP, which came out in 2000, and a full length LP ("To Eleven") that followed a year later seem to be the Backstabbers only recorded output.
If you enjoyed The Catheters 7" that was posted in January or are a fan of hard, snotty rock 'n roll in general, this may be right up your alley.

American Teenage Rock 'n Roll

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Display to Play Next Satur-Day

Big news: Display, whose lone LP and other miscellany we recently shared with you, dear readers, have reunited and are playing their first show in over nine years. It's next Saturday, March 9th, at Chop Suey, with Kinski. Also, my birthday is tomorrow. Pretty rad. So, here's that post, so you can get up to speed on why you must be there.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Dalmatians - Ruff Drafts CD-R

Dalmatians were a synth party rap 3-piece. I saw them one time, at Drone Hill, a house in Beacon Hill where Craig of Black Japan lived. It was right after my buddies Display suddenly broke up, and I was pretty bummed out about the way things went down. I found myself talking to a few folks, one of whom introduced herself as "Chicken", which I thought was odd but chalked it up to presumed hippie parents. Turns out she was in the opening band, the lead squawker, as it were, and all three members had made-up names. Chicken yelled simple raps and jumped around while "Pongo" pounded a small drum kit, and "Balsa" yelled/rapped along with Chicken, triggered sequences, and played simple synth parts akin to 8-bit game soundtracks. Much dancing ensued, a fun time was had by all, and the band's songs were mostly enthusiastic uptempo encouragements to party and have a fun time. It was fitting, and it was exactly what I needed in that moment.

If my memory is correct, it was one of the band's earliest shows, and they only had the four songs on this CD-R they were handing out. People loved it so much that when they finished those four, they played at least one of them again to appease the crowd.

I don't think Dalmatians lasted very long, but they were a lot of fun. Balsa's next band put his real name in the title, as the Brian half of Casy & Brian. Pongo, aka D.W. Burnam, was later in a band called Katherine Hepburn's Voice with Shannon Perry, Dalmations' very own Chicken, who would later form the punk duo Butts, and is now apparently more focused on painting. You can see her work here.

Download the 4-song EP here.

Here's a two-part video of a Dalmatians show at the Punkin House.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Vermilion demo tapes, CD-R EP, and 7"

Vermilion, spelled with one "L" for some unknown reason, were a two-headed beast from Everett. The first head was the Texas is the Reason/Roadside Monument - influenced emo period of 1998-99 or so, wherein the lineup consisted of high schoolers Eric Yates on guitar and vocals, Eric Junge on drums, Danny Oleson on bass, and Colin McBride on guitar. This lineup produced a couple demo tapes, one of which is included here.

The second head of the beast emerged after Yates left to focus on Portal, the remaining members listened to tons of Slint and Don Caballero, and Bryce Shoemaker was brought in handle the increasingly math-y guitar duties. Danny took over the vocals, which became less and less frequent, and shifting complex time signatures and complicated, dynamic instrumentation became their calling card. They put out a CD-R and lone 7-inch (both also included here) before driving out to Chicago to record with Steve Albini what would be their only LP, "Flattening Mountains and Creating Empires", featuring artwork by Roger Dean, aka the guy who painted all the Yes album covers.

After going their seperate ways, Colin and Danny opted to get away from all the complexity and started the pop band Speaker Speaker. Eric Junge started Patrol with Doug Lorig of Roadside Monument (a major early influence), Bryce formed Bronze Fawn, and Eric Yates kept bouncing around between bands, most recently as a member of Tit Pig.

Download the tape, 7", and CD-R, with full art scans, here.

Update: I finally got around to the other demo tape of theirs that I have. I'm guessing this is from 1999. 5 songs, plus a 3 song set that I recorded, probably at the Grange. Download that here.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Catheters - The Kids Know How To Rock 7"

The Catheters were a punk rock band from Bellevue, WA that played together from 1995-2004. While this 7" wasn't their first release, it was the first studio material by them that I ever heard. A buddy of mine bought a copy after a show we went to during the Summer of '99 and I remember us being really impressed, both with their live show and the record. The Catheters definitely matured over time and by the time they released their 3rd and final record in 2004 they were light years beyond where they were at on this e.p. but this is the way they sounded when I first fell in love with their take on the sound of snotty, teenage rebellion.

The Kids Know How To Rock

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

BlöödHag - Gorgeous Ladies of Writing 7"

If you're an avid follower of this blog, you probably already know who BlöödHag were but, in case you're unfamiliar, here's a brief biography: BlöödHag was a death metal band from Seattle (1996-2010) whose lyrics were odes to various sci-fi, horror and fantasy authors. During their time together they not only toured your typical music venues, they also toured playing in libraries all across the country.

Tonight's download contains their Gorgeous Ladies of Writing 7" (1999) complete with scans of the record's sleeve and of the accompanying G.L.O.W. swimsuit calendar

Gorgeous Ladies of Writing 7"