March 28, 2008

Something Else #5 - REM

From 1982-1987, there was no better rock and roll band on Earth than REM.
The Athens, Georgia-based quartet released a five-song EP (Chronic Town) in 1982 -- then followed with five superb albums -- one per year -- Murmur, Reckoning, Fables Of The Reconstruction, Lifes Rich Pageant, and Document.

For me -- in my early 20s, a music addict with a college radio show -- guitarist Peter Buck was the epitome of indie rock cool. The one-time record store clerk was a font of knowledge and trivia about American music, praising and promoting other bands like Jason and the Scorchers, the Replacements, Hüsker Dü and the Minutemen, as well as older influences like Big Star, in interviews.

The 1980s was a tremendously creative period for American rock music -- and REM was one of the bands that set it in motion. Here's a clip of the band from October 6, 1983 playing "Radio Free Europe" on the David Letterman Show (their national TV debut).



For their second song that night, REM opted for a song so new, it was still untitled. They had played it live for the first time only three days earlier. Gutsy choice for a new band, but they clearly knew what a gem they had, since it's one of the best songs of their career.

After their amazing indie run, REM left IRS for Warner Bros. and their creativity flagged. The band gained tremendous mainstream success (everyone has probably heard 1991's "Losing My Religion") but subsequent recordings were hit and miss, rarely touching the genius of their early days. After drummer Bill Berry left the band in 1997, they struggled mightily to find their creative edge as a trio. Their three albums without him seemed like an attempt to distance themselves from their past -- to explore new musical ideas and not fall back on being the rock band they once were.

REM's 14th studio album -- Accelerate -- will be officially released next Tuesday. The band has been streaming the entire thing online and it's been uploaded to many mp3 blogs. I found a copy a week or two ago. I had heard bits of the recordings of their five nights of "working rehearsals" in Dublin last July -- held while they were recording the album -- but I never expected to hear the band sound like this again in the studio. One word:

GUITAR!!!!!!!

Glorious, loud, buzzy, insistent, slashing, snarling GUITAR! Put that together with Mike Mills's propulsive, muscular basslines and the return of his wonderful harmonies and a fully engaged Michael Stipe spitting out lyrics that mine his political anger while struggling to rise above the sonic maelstrom and you get: Holy shit!

Accelerate's first three songs -- Living Well Is The Best Revenge, Man-Sized Wreath, Supernatural Superserious -- constitute the strongest start to an REM album in 21 years -- a kick-ass cacophony that blazes by in a mere nine minutes. Indeed, the band wastes little time on this record: five of the 11 songs clock in at: 2:05, 2:07, 2:18, 2:33, 2:39 -- and the entire CD lasts about 34 minutes.

The rest of the album cannot maintain that furious kick start, but it's pretty damn good. Since 1987's Document, only Automatic For The People (1992) and New Adventures In Hi-Fi (1996) can even think of holding a candle to this album.

Check comments to listen to some early REM.

61 comments:

redsock said...

Here are four concerts from REM's early days (with some samples -- at 128 kbps; the concerts are at 256), plus the band's recent show at the SXSW festival in Austin.

Click on the "free" button at the Rapidshare link (unless you have an account); you'll need WinRAR, easily found for free online, to unpack the files. Enjoy!

April 24, 1982, Merlin's, Madison, WI (Soundboard)
Gardening At Night / 9-9 / Ages Of You / Shaking Through / Laughing / Romance / Sitting Still / Pretty Persuasion / That Beat / Catapult / Radio Free Europe / Wolves, Lower / Carnival Of Sorts (Boxcars) / White Tornado / West Of The Fields / Stumble-Apache-Skank / There She Goes Again-We're Gonna Have A Real Good Time Together
(Part 1; Part 2)

July 9, 1983, Larry's Hideaway, Toronto, Ontario (Soundboard)
Wolves, Lower / Moral Kiosk / Laughing / Pilgrimage / Moon River / There She Goes Again / Seven Chinese Brothers / Talk About The Passion / Sitting Still / Harborcoat / Catapult / Pretty Persuasion / Gardening At Night / 9-9 / Just A Touch / West Of The Fields / Radio Free Europe / We Walk / 1,000,000 / Carnival Of Sorts (Boxcars)
(Part 1; Part 2)

October 2, 1985, Die Zeche, Bochum, Germany (Recorded for TV show Rockpalast)
Feeling Gravitys Pull / Harborcoat / Sitting Still / Maps And Legends / Fall On Me / Green Grow The Rushes / Driver 8 / Hyena / So. Central Rain / Have You Ever Seen The Rain? / Can't Get There From Here / King Of The Road / Seven Chinese Brothers / Auctioneer (Another Engine) / Old Man Kensey / Little America / Pretty Persuasion / Theme From Two Steps Onward / Toys In The Attic / See No Evil / Second Guessing / Ghost Riders In The Sky / (Don't Go Back To) Rockville / We Walk-Falling In Love Again-Behind Closed Doors / Paint It, Black / Bonus: Moon River & Pretty Persuasion from "The Old Grey Whistle Test", Studio 5, BBC TV, London, November 20, 1984
(Part 1; Part 2)

October 4, 1986, Paramount Theater, Seattle, WA (Audience)
These Days / Radio Free Europe / Hyena / Pilgrimage / The One I Love / Shaking Through / Feeling Gravitys Pull / White Tornado / Driver 8 / The Flowers Of Guatemala / I Believe / Swan Swan H / The Counting Song / Dream (All I Have To Do Is) / Superman / Can't Get There From Here / Pretty Persuasion / Auctioneer (Another Engine) / Windout / Home On The Range (a capella) / Little America / Fall On Me / Cuyahoga / 1,000,000 / We Don't Need Another Hero / Strange / Begin The Begin / Funtime / Toys In The Attic / So. Central Rain
(Part 1; Part 2)

March 13, 2008, Stubb's Bar-B-Q, Austin, TX (npr.org archived audio)
Living Well Is The Best Revenge / Man-Sized Wreath / Second Guessing / Drive / Hollow Man / Animal / Auctioneer (Another Engine) / Mr. Richards / Fall On Me / The Great Beyond / Houston / Electrolite / Accelerate / Until The Day Is Done / Final Straw / Bad Day / Horse to Water / Walk Unafraid / Supernatural Superserious / Imitation Of Life / Happy Birthday / I'm Gonna DJ / Man On The Moon
(Part 1; Part 2)

[I may need to remove the samples depending on how much traffic they get. The two-part links to the entire shows will remain.]

L-girl said...

Great post! Thanks.

"REM... Don't they have a single out?"

Zenslinger said...

The rumor among my wife's friends was that "The One I Love" was written about one of them. When Stipe showed up at his funeral a couple years ago, the rumor solidified a bit.

I have always liked, but not been nuts about REM. I finally saw them a few years back on a big tour. They were all right, but Buck was definitely still in his enthusiastic groove. My favorite song by them is probably "The Wake-up Bomb".

My greatest regret recently was missing Robyn Hitchcock play with the Minus Three, which includes Buck, at a club (again, this is in the last two-three years). We had tickets, but the weather was wicked and we just couldn't face leaving the house. When we got the bootleg off of DIME, I knew in the first few notes that it was not the show to have missed.

redsock said...

"REM... Don't they have a single out?"

Do we need to explain that for our audience?

L-girl said...

Do we need to explain that for our audience?

No.

redsock said...

The rumor among my wife's friends was that "The One I Love" was written about one of them. When Stipe showed up at his funeral a couple years ago, the rumor solidified a bit.

I don't recall ever reading anything about the subject of this song. Just that Stipe could not get over singing it and seeing couples in the crowd hugging and smiling and acting like it was a love song.

I have always liked, but not been nuts about REM. I finally saw them a few years back on a big tour. They were all right, but Buck was definitely still in his enthusiastic groove. My favorite song by them is probably "The Wake-up Bomb".

I really like Hi-Fi. It works better as an album than as individual songs, though the opener is a bit of a clunker.

I first saw them in Vermont in October 1986 (Halloween, I think), then one week later in NYC when I flew down to see Laura. (L had flown up for the VT show, which I reviewed for the Burlington paper later that night. Positive review, but horribly written. $25!)

After I moved, we saw them at Radio City in 1987.

Green came out on election day 1988 and it was a double gut-punch. Bush got elected and this Lp was released. I like most of it now, but at the time, it was nothing short of a personal betrayal, an unforgivable commercial sell-out.

We went out to the Meadowlands to see them on the Green tour in 1989 -- I was hoping they hadn't changed live -- but it was very disappointing. They were beginning to shy away from their pre-Fables stuff but when they did play something, it sounded so much better than the new stuff.

When Out of Time came out in 1991, I interviewed Stipe and Berry for a music magazine. That morning, I woke up with laryngitis -- for the only day in my life. Very weird. And I still recall very clearly talking with producer Scott Litt on the phone a few days later and "getting" him to admit the band had tried to be more commercial with Green. Ah-ha! I knew it! Bastards!

With the last three albums (some of Reveal is actualy good, though they are totally ripping off the Beach Boys and Roxy Music), I assumed they would kind of drift along and do nothing much with their rest of career. I'll still buy every album out of loyalty, but I gave up expecting much.

For some reason, the live stuff from last summer didn't impact me much. I downloaded all five nights, but didn't fully listen to them. Or maybe I was more curious about how they sounded playing their old stuff -- but the new CD totally surprised me.

There were two other songs they played a lot during the Dublin shows -- On The Fly and Staring Down The Barrell Of The Middle Distance -- that did not get on the CD. Not sure why, since there was room. (Plus Stipe introduced Man-Sized Wreath as a song that would not make it. He called it a B-side, before Mills pointed out that there are no B-sides anymore. ... No A-sides either.)

Also in Dublin, Supernatural did not have its chorus or the ending bit yet and it was titled "Disguised".

L-girl said...

I finally saw them a few years back on a big tour. They were all right

I love REM, for about the same time period as Allan, but nothing recent.

But I never really liked them live. We saw them in venues large and small, and they were just never that good a live band, IMO. Or, the band was good, but Stipe is just such an awful frontman - trying so hard to be unusual, or an anti-frontman, or an anti-rockstar. For me it came off as pretentious.

I love his voice and his songwriting, but as a performer I think he lacks energy and spontaneity, even if it's only the idea or image of spontaneity.

L-girl said...

I first saw them in Vermont in October 1986 (Halloween, I think), then one week later in NYC when I flew down to see Laura. (L had flown up for the VT show

REM Week, 1986. Yes, it was Halloween. It was the first time I saw you after... you know what.

Wasn't the show in Burlington in some kind of gym or auditorium?

redsock said...

and they were just never that good a live band

...

...

...

To ban or not to ban ...

For me it came off as pretentious.

Well, he was/is that. I think that started in 1985 or so -- at first in interviews talking about how he couldn't have a refrigerator in his house because the humming interferred with his brainwaves or something. Then the megaphone onstage and once they jumped to a major label, it got worse.

One nice thing about the new record is his voice sounds less pretentious.

Wasn't the show in Burlington in some kind of gym or auditorium?

UVM's Patrick Gymnasium. I got a copy of the show awhile back. I should burn it and really listen to it.

I wonder if a recording of the Swimming Pool Qs from July 20, 1985 exists!

redsock said...

Also, note I have not yet typed the two words most associated with early REM:

enigmatic & jangle

accudart said...

For those about to rock................I haven't heard any of the new R.E.M. but I've seen nothing but glowing reviews. Good piece, I like the inclusion of music in Joy of Sox.

Douglas said...

For sure, Green and Out Of Time were a change for the band, but Automatic For The People was the last straw for me...until Monster came out. Great band, like you say. Never saw them but I wish I did.

redsock said...

Good piece, I like the inclusion of music in Joy of Sox.

Thanks, Ray.

I'm thinking of uploading and posting a random concert on every off-day this season.

I haven't heard any of the new R.E.M. but I've seen nothing but glowing reviews.

Click on the streaming link. The whole LP is there.

redsock said...

douglas: that is the greatest avatar ever!!!!

Automatic For The People was the last straw for me...until Monster came out.

You think AFTP was bad? Monster was supposed to be their return to loud rock, but it was way too mannered and self-conscious. Plus outside of Kenneth and Star 69, it didn't rock.

Also, the 1985 Rockpalast show I uploaded circulates on DVD too. There are many clips on YouTube, with Stipe with short blond hair.

redsock said...

Ray, you don't remember the Swimming Pool Qs, do you? :>)

L-girl said...

To ban or not to ban ...

Then who will moderate the game threads while you score the game?? :)

Ray, you don't remember the Swimming Pool Qs, do you? :>)

Something tells me that night was slightly less important to Ray than to us.

I also love Douglas' avatar! WOW!

redsock said...

Is there a series of Pablo Sox avatars? I'll take a Manny!

Well some people try to pick up girls
And get called assholes
This never happened to Pablo Picasso ...

chief said...

Wow, great post redsock.

I came to the REM party a little late (I spent most of the 80's enamored with bands that were long defunct or had dead members).

I can listen to their whole catalog up until Berry left and enjoy almost every moment. They definitely changed with Green, but I'm fine with it.

The post-Berry stuff is really hit and miss though - some gems buried in their too, but it generally lacks energy. I still buy the albums out of loyalty too.

On Stipe being pretentious. I can definitely see that and agree that he is. But I think there's more to it. He's incredibly shy - won't look people he doesn't know in they eye when he meets them, that sort of thing.

My wife and I lived in Athens when she was in grad school (great town, great place to live). We share a common friend with Stipe (Michael Lachowski, who was/is the bass player for Pylon - bonus points if you remember them - REM opened for Pylon in the really early days). Anyway, we were at parties a few times where Stipe made an brief appearance. He seemed pained to be there because of all the new people. Our friend Michael, who's known him since he first came to Athens, explained that his people skills aren't very strong - explains a lot, actually.

Jere said...

"And get called assholes
This never happened to Pablo Picasso"

Heard this performed live just this month by Richman. It's so cool when he plays the old songs because his voice just goes right back to the way it did back 30-odd years ago when he recorded it. I mean, you can always tell Jonathan's voice, but it has changed over the years. I just like how he can purposely go back to that young-man drone-voice.

But back to REM, I was gonna say, "I thought Monster was their "return to the rock" album," but I see you've now mentioned that, and you answered my question, which would've been, Did the whole thing sound like "Kenneth"? (since I didn't hear much of it besides that). So I see it didn't. That new tune on the radio, Supernatural..., I like it better than all the other crap coming out, but not totally crazy about it. Good to know they are rocking, though.

9casey said...

82-87 no better rock band then REM, most not be much of a U2 fan .........

Zenslinger said...

http://www.dimeadozen.org/torrents-details.php?id=190074

Link is for Redsock, unless you happen to be a DIME member.

L-girl said...

82-87 no better rock band then REM, most not be much of a U2 fan .........

Totally different musical scene. No comparison.

L-girl said...

I don't doubt Stipe is shy, but you can't really take those things into account when seeing a live performance. If he's not appealing onstage, then he's just not, no matter what's at the root of it.

Patrick said...

I never had a chance to like REM, because my mom listened to them before I did. I just couldn't let myself enjoy the same music as my mom.

I remember my girlfriend telling me she once came back to her apartment to find a roommate looking miserable, painting and listening to "everybody hurts". She told me she made fun of him and left. Even though it is strangely cruel, I loved her all the more for it, and I can't help but find the whole situation funny.

L-girl said...

I never had a chance to like REM, because my mom listened to them before I did. I just couldn't let myself enjoy the same music as my mom.

Oh man, you gotta grow out of that, you'll miss too much!

Three generations of families are going to Dylan shows together. Now that rock and roll people have kids and grandkids, rejecting your parents' music because it's your parents' music just means you miss out and too much great stuff.

L-girl said...

Link is for Redsock, unless you happen to be a DIME member.

He is.

He must be busy at work today.

redsock said...

Thanks Zen. I'm at about 20% on that one, but shut things down today so L can use the phone.

Also got the Royal Albert Hall b-cast.

redsock said...

I never had a chance to like REM, because my mom listened to them before I did. I just couldn't let myself enjoy the same music as my mom.

check out the older shows i posted. if you don't like those, then there's no hope for you.

82-87 no better rock band then REM, most not be much of a U2 fan .........

REM 82-87 = Pedro 98-00.

U2 = Zito or somebody.

redsock said...

Did the whole thing sound like "Kenneth"?

Sadly, no.

L-girl said...

but shut things down today so L can use the phone

Hey, you don't want my mother to be sad, do you?

redsock said...

I'd rather see the concert.

L-girl said...

I'll tell her you said that.

redsock said...

U2 was very good but they've always been an arena band -- even when they weren't famous enough to play arenas. Big-sounding anthemic songs and spectacle are their stock and trade.

REM could be as anthemic as U2 (or more (1986's "These Days")) while still sounding and acting like a bar band. They were looser, more prone to improvisation; they were a lot more FUN. Plus, there's more going on in their songs, lyrically, emotionally and musically.

redsock said...

1983-1987

U2
War (1983)
The Unforgettable Fire (1984)
The Joshua Tree (1987)

REM
Murmur (1983)
Reckoning (1984)
Fables Of The Reconstruction (1985)
Lifes Rich Pageant (1986)
Document (1987)

...

No contest.

Jere said...

"I just couldn't let myself enjoy the same music as my mom."

I never got into the Beatles (mom) or Sinatra (dad) for the same reason. It was "my parents' music" and I never wanted any part of it. I do feel old, though, when people say REM is their parents' music. Now I'm bracing myself for "Grandma's in the den listening to the Beastie Boys."

And then, "From what we can tell from the letters we found in the attic, great-great-granddad saw Napalm Death on at least ten occasions."

L-girl said...

I never got into the Beatles (mom) or Sinatra (dad) for the same reason. It was "my parents' music" and I never wanted any part of it.

Well good for you, since they both suck. :)

My dad loved big-band and swing, and it is awesome music. It gave me a great foundation for learning about jazz.

My mom loves Gershwin and Rodgers & Hammerstein and Irving Berlin, and I'm glad I know about all that music, and can figure out what I like of it and what I don't.

Music is too important and too varied to be rejected generationally. At least if you're over 17.

I do feel old, though, when people say REM is their parents' music.

Well, sure. If you live long enough, that will happen.

Patrick said...

"Oh man, you gotta grow out of that, you'll miss too much!"

Except that, along with REM, my mom like Metallica, and alice and chains, and creed...

I'm not really missing out.

chief said...

I don't doubt Stipe is shy, but you can't really take those things into account when seeing a live performance. If he's not appealing onstage, then he's just not, no matter what's at the root of it.

Totally agree - I think I was referring to him being pretentious, not necessarily his stage presence or lack there of.

He's probably pretentious, shy and poor on stage. Still love his efforts.

I just couldn't let myself enjoy the same music as my mom.

Yikes, I feel old all the sudden. So what are the kids listening to these days? I like the White Stripes, am I still hip? Was I ever? Nevermind, probably best not to answer that.

L-girl said...

He's probably pretentious, shy and poor on stage. Still love his efforts.

I do too. :)

I like the White Stripes, am I still hip? Was I ever? Nevermind, probably best not to answer that.

It's best not to ask, and not to answer. These days, we get old and unhip at an ever-younger age.

It's good to just listen to whatever you like, and keep searching for new sounds that turn you on. Even, as in my case, if those sounds are 50 or 60 years old.

redsock said...

My first thought when Patrick said his mom liked REM was "What is he, 8?"

But considering that Murmur came out (gulp) 25 years ago, that's silly.

Then he says "my mom like Metallica, and alice and chains, and creed" and I'm back to thinking he's 8 again. ...

Who cares? Some of my favorite music -- Muddy, Wolf, other Chess stuff -- was recorded 15-20 years before I was born.

No one would say "I don't read books from my parents or grandparents' generations" (or they shouldn't). Same thing with music.

redsock said...

The White Stripes are one of the few bands of recent vintage that I really like.

There may be many more, but I'm not out hunting for new bands. It seems I am content at this point to become an old fart.

Maybe I'll post some Stripes for SE#6.

L-girl said...

No one would say "I don't read books from my parents or grandparents' generations" (or they shouldn't). Same thing with music.

Good point. When you're at the age where music is part of your rebellion, it's understandable to stay away from your parents' music. But once you're finished with that...

There may be many more, but I'm not out hunting for new bands. It seems I am content at this point to become an old fart.

I don't know any new music now, but I won't take the old fart label. I'm exploring great music all the time - it's new to me, it just isn't new on earth. I'm sure I'm more open to new sounds than many people who follow whatever is new.

Maybe I'll post some Stripes for SE#6.

Tag them!

redsock said...

Crap. Looks like the samples from the 1983 show are not working. And that's like the best quality show. I'll try to fix them Saturday morning.

All the others work.

Jere said...

I can't figure out how old Patrick's mom is. If she liked REM circa Everybody Hurts, and Creed, plus Metallica and AIC, she probably came of age roughly '94. But you wouldn't have a kid until after that. Then again, it is '98, so Patrick could be 14. Nah, he's gotta be at least in college. So maybe she was just into that stuff in her late 20s while raising young Patrick.

Anyway, the Metallica from the era when Creed existed is about as bad as, well, Creed. But I love the early stuff. Everything up to when they finally made that ballad. Kill 'em All and Master of Puppets and Ride the Lightning is some killer shit. Even And Justice For All. They really did lose their awesome Satanic powers when they cut their hair.

And Alice in Chains did a lot of crazy harmonizing that nobody ever talks about and that most of the bands that sound like them wouldn't be able to figure out how to do. You can hear it better on those two less-deadly EPs, Jar of Flies and Sap.

But Pat's mom can keep the religious stylings of Creed.

redsock said...

They really did lose their awesome Satanic powers when they cut their hair.

aka the Bob Seger Syndrome.

SoSock said...

Interesting reading - I love R&R, and a lot of other music now as well, almost any kind if it's done well, (except country & opera) but really love live stuff and think that's what tells the tale.
I've seen bands that I liked a lot, then never really bothered with again after the show, I've seen shows by bands that I'd never bought an album by and was blown away.
I got stuck in my 70's groove for too long until a slightly younger friend who had spent 8 years away at college turned me onto some great stuff I'd been missing - including the aforementioned REM. Also Talking Heads (I'd only heard the radio stuff), EARLY Police, Sex Pistols, Jim Carroll, Replacements, etc. It didn't replace my rock heroes, but definitely added to my repertoire and opened my eyes to the fact that all new music was no longer the crap that disco had been

SoSock said...

aka the Bob Seger Syndrome.

Ha - Bob Seger. Actually one of the acts I was thinking of above. Never was into much of his music, liked some things but not a lot, then saw a show sometime around 85 (not real sure) - he KICKED ASS!

SoSock said...

Last on this subject - promise!
Anyone up there ever hear Let's Active. They're out of Winston-Salem, where I'm at. Mitch Easter fronted the band. He produced REM's 1st couple of albums. I did a little work around his studio, not even knowing it was where they recorded "Radio Free Europe"
Easter still lives here and does an occasional show with a couple of different bands he's in.
Trivial, I know.

redsock said...

SoSock:

I believe I still have two Let's Active albums.

I remember playing a band called Oh OK (which featured Stipe's sister Linda) on my radio show. Buck used to mention Pylon and Love Tractor in interviews -- and REM played one Pylon song as a cover many times -- but I never got into either of them.

Nice mention of the 'Mats up thread, btw.

SoSock said...

Wow, just checked back before I headed to bed. I really thought I might be the only guy who ever bought one of their albums. I can't even remember the name of the one I have now, but I believe it was their second. One of the songs got a little local airplay. Pretty good jam -

Patrick said...

Reading all these comments about guessing my mom and I's age has been making me laugh so hard.

My parents divorced when I was 13 or so. My mom got together with some guy who was a bit crazy and drove a Ducati Motorcycle shortly after. Around this time she started listening to Metallica and music like that (she liked REM before this). She wasn't into Creed because of it's lyrics, fyi.

I didn't have the same aversion to my dad's music (because I liked him more). I remember running in circles to Frank Zappa, Bob Marley, The Beatles and Cream when I was wee one.

L-girl said...

They really did lose their awesome Satanic powers when they cut their hair.

aka the Bob Seger Syndrome.


Bob Seger had it, but it's called the Bob Weir Syndrome.

redsock said...

I replaced one of the 1983 tracks: Harborcoat. It's the best sounding of the shows here, so you can't go wrong. Forget the sample and just get the whole thing.

redsock said...

Is posting shows on days off a good idea?

I count 21 off-days this year (17 + 4 for the All-Star break (the Sox are off an extra day after the ASG).

Any suggestions (band/year)? No promises.

chief said...

A bit late to answer now maybe, but posting shows on off days is an excellent idea.

Jere said...

Just went back to check on my "Patrick's mom" comment, and I see Patrick answered it (thanks), and I see Sosock is into the 'mats and Pistols and shit. Cool. Although I have to admit that even though I have been trained in the ways of all things rock in both the metal and punk schools, my earliest memories were from being in the back seat at age 3-5 in the late 70s hearing on the radio...disco. So I'll always have room in my heart for that cheesy, cheesy, shit.

A Sex Pistols set of shows would be good for an off day. That album is so GOOD, and I don't think people even give it a chance, assuming it can't be something they like, let alone anything of any musical quality. But it's great rock 'n' roll.

Maybe on an off day when the Sox need a good kick in the arse.

redsock said...

disco. So I'll always have room in my heart for that cheesy, cheesy, shit.

Not that I'm much of an expert, but a lot of it is very solid R&B, with a bunch of instrumental shit going on under the beat. ("Instrumental shit" is an actual musical term, btw.) I've re-heard songs that I remember as pretty much a big thud and been quite surprised at what was being played.

A Sex Pistols set of shows would be good for an off day.

I have about 10 shows, one or two of them should sound decent. (No reunion shows! Bah!)

That album is so GOOD ... great rock 'n' roll.

This applies to the Pistols too I guess, but the first time I heard the Dead Kennedys (the California Uber Alles/Man With The Dogs 45), I was expecting (based on the stuff I had read) this offensive, abrasive sound that would overload my brain. And it was noisy pop music! That you could happily sing along to! WTF???

redsock said...

Let's Active Update:
I have Cypress (1984) and Big Plans For Everyone (1986).

REM Covers Update: "Crazy" was the Pylon song REM used to play. They also often tore through Television's "See No Evil" and Aerosmith's "Toys In The Attic" (see the 1985 show I posted).

Jere said...

Here's an idea. A post that starts with a few Dead Kennedys shows and then gets into some Jello Biafra spoken word performances.

Left-wing politics and music in one post! The curmudgeons might never come back, though....

In my dream last night, Dan Shaughnessey walks past me in an airport and says, "Hi, Jere...."

redsock said...

a few Dead Kennedys shows and then gets into some Jello Biafra spoken word performances

My cupboard is bare in this regard. (However, I do have a DVD of them playing with Black Flag and Bad Brains from February 1983.)

In my dream last night, Dan Shaughnessey walks past me in an airport and says, "Hi, Jere...."

I hope you snubbed him.

I've had a few dreams in which I see linescores and teams have scored a ton of runs in an inning, like 50 runs or 85 runs.

I worked as a waiter from 1987-1990 and I regularly have dreams of waiting tables and being wildly busy. ... 18 years later ... same cafe ... same set-up ... buried in the weeds ...

Jere said...

Linescore dreams, I wish I had those. In the CHB dream, I did just keep walking, and then some Asian lady said hi to me, too. I realized I was the famous person going through the airport and everyone knew me.