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After a lengthy hiatus, I'm back. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Do You Want To Hear the Best Song Ever?

How to explain?

Okay, so I think I’ve mentioned before that I frequent a Guided by Voices message board. I know, I know, message boards are sooo 1990s, but this particular board is quite a beehive of activity. You can go on there and “talk” about pretty much anything. Most of the discussion does not necessarily revolve around Robert Pollard, but everyone there does have a love for most-things-Bob in common. The other commonality seems to be a love for Rock & Roll in general. In fact, music is probably the most active topic—you can find a thread on just about any band you can think of. Heated arguments occasionally ensue, because aside from Pollard projects, you can’t get much of a consensus on any other artist. The boarders are very passionate about their taste in music and extremely knowledgeable when it comes to Rock History. I can’t tell you how many great recommendations I’ve gotten from that board over the last few years.

There is one thread in particular, titled “The Best Song Ever . . . Right Now At Least”, which I have long thought would make a good source for a Burn and Shine compilation. As you can probably surmise from the title of the thread, it is a place where members name a particular song that is currently kicking their ass. Sometimes these can be obvious, like “Unsatisfied” or “A Day in the Life”, but usually people venture into the thread to divulge the virtues of songs a little more off the beaten path.

I decided to go through the last few pages (the thread started in March of 2005 and is currently up to page 316) picking songs that were on my hard drive that had not yet made one of my compilations here at B&S. It has my signature all over it—you’ll see some of my favorite artists—but I can’t take credit for the choices. In order to give credit to the people who inspired the compilation, I’ve put their screen names in parentheses next to the song they nominated.

I’ll let the compilation speak for itself, but I will say that I think it turned out pretty fabulous, and I will continue to mine that thread for future Burn and Shine compilations.

Happy listening!

Do You Want To Hear the Best Song Ever?

01. Mission of Burma, "Progress" [1985] (Pimple Zoos)
02. The Monkees, "What Am I Doing Hangin' Round?" [1967] (Chapter 18)
03. Bobby Fuller, "Let Her Dance" [1965] (Steve Cock)
04. Brian Eno, "Burning Airlines Give You So Much More" [1974] (Man of Dimension)
05. Dinosaur Jr, "Does It Float" [1985] (Man of Dimension)
06. Archers of Loaf, "Death in the Park" [1995] (Ultra Maroon Blazer)
07. Martha & the Muffins, "Echo Beach" [1979] (The Third Man)
08. The Clash, "Jail Guitar Doors" [1977] (Dannyramone)
09. The Stranglers, "Golden Brown" [1981] (LARM)
10. Devo, "Beautiful World" [1981] (Dirty Dutch)
11. Low, "Starfire"[1999] (Lookit55)
12. Throwing Muses, "Not Too Soon" [1991] (MoreHotDogsPlease!)
13. The Wedding Present, "Dare" [1991] (Pimple Zoos)
14. Screaming Trees, "Seeing and Believing" [1986] (MoreHotDogsPlease!)
15. Undertones, "My Perfect Cousin" [1979] (LARM)
16. Wire, "Map Ref. 41n 93w" [1979] (Jscott)
17. The Byrds, "Wasn't Born to Follow" [1968] (Berno)
20. 20/20, "Backyard Guys" [1979] (Berno)
19. Roxy Music, "Editions of You" [1973] (Breadwinner & Klutz)
20. Nick Drake, "From the Morning" [1972] (Riff Randall)
21. X, "White Girl" [1981] (Dirty Dutch)
22. Tall Dwarfs, "Crawl" [1990] (Spastic Semicolon)
23. Sex Pistols, "Bodies" [1977] (Dirty Dutch)
24. Them, "Richard Cory" [1966](LARM)
25. The Church, "Tear It All Away" [1982] (RedLetterDay)

Total Time: 1:19:25

Download it here: Do You Want to Hear the Best Song Ever?

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Christmas Tunes!

[EDIT: December 8, 2011]
If you are finding this blog for the the first time in search of Christmas tunes, then thanks for stopping by! If you like the comps featured below, then don't forget to check out the latest volume in the Christmas Redux Series featured here: Merry Christmas!
[/End EDIT]

It's the home stretch, folks: Christmas is less than three weeks away. Of course that means it's Christmas Redux time here at Burn and Shine! Twenty-five more holiday faves from my seemingly endless supply of Rock & Roll Christmas tunes. This year's edition features a few returning stars from my previous Christmas compilations: The Ventures, Stevie Wonder, the Sonics, the Eels, the Pointed Sticks and Low. Several of these artists, however, are making their first appearance on a Burn and Shine playlist. I'd especially like to call your attention to track #12, as it was submitted by one of my readers. Rob Stuart of Broken Promise Keeper, stumbled upon my blog during Power Pop Month here at B&S. He graciously sent me an mp3 of a Christmas song he recorded in 2009. One listen, and I knew it had to be on this year's Christmas compilation.

If you have any recommendations for future Xmas Redux volumes, please leave me a comment.

Merry Christmas and Happy Listening!

Christmas Redux Five (Artwork for this volume can be seen and downloaded at the end of this post):

01. The White Stripes, "Candy Cane Children"
02. NRBQ, "Christmas Wish"
03. Billy Childish, "Ho Ho!"
04. Adam Arcuragi, "The Christmas Song"
05. Paul Westerberg, "Away in a Manger"
06. The Young Republic, "Merry Christmas Again . . ."
07. The Psycho Daisies, "Santa Is Coming Down Again"
08. Trembling Blue Stars, "Christmas and Train Trips and Things"
09. The Sonics, "I Don't Believe in Christmas"
10. The Ventures, "Sleigh Ride"
11. The Very Foundation, "All Lit Up (For Christmas)"
12. Broken Promise Keeper, "Christmas Countdown"
13. Chris Stamey, "Christmas Time"
14. The Flaming Lips, "Christmas at the Zoo"
15. The Payola$, "Christmas is Coming"
16. The Icicles, "Snowman Song"
17. Eels, "Everything's Gonna Be Cool This Christmas"
18. Stevie Wonder, "What Christmas Means To Me"
19. The Vipers, "Christmas I'll Be Home"
20. The Dickies, "Silent Night"
21. Jens Lekman, "Run Away With Me"
22. The Pointed Sticks, "Xmastime Again"
23. Brendan Hanlon & the Bat Men, "Christmas Party"
24. Julian Casablancas, "I Wish It Was Christmas Today"
25. Low, "Long Way Round the Sea"

Total time: 1:12:47

Download it here: Christmas Redux Five

Since I've gotten so many new readers this year, I've gone ahead and reposted all four previous editions of Christmas Redux below. If you're interested in reading the original posts just click the "Xmas" tag at the end of today's post, otherwise just download the comps right from this page.

Christmas Redux

01. “The Christmas Song” by the Raveonettes
02. “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” by Darlene Love
03. “Just Like Christmas” by Low
04. “Santa Looked a Lot Like Daddy” by Buck Owens
05. “All the Right Reasons” by Dressy Bessy
06. “Santa’s Got a Brand New Bag” by Gary Walker
07. “Christmas Eve” by the Galaxies
08. “Run Run Rudolph by Dave Edmunds
09. “Christmas Spirit??” by the Wailers
10. “Santa Claws” by Vermont
11. “Santa Claus” by The Sonics
12. “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” by Band Aid
13. “O, Little Town of Bethlehem” by the Young Fresh Fellows
14. “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” by Pedro the Lion
15. “Little Drummer Boy (Up the Kyber)” by the Hoodoo Gurus
16. “Who Took the Merry Out of Christmas?” by the Staple Singers
17. “Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want to Fight Tonight)” by the Ramones
18. “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” by Bruce Springsteen
19. “2000 Miles” by the Pretenders
20. “I Want an Alien for Christmas” by Fountains of Wayne
21. “Merry Christmas Girl” by The Figgs
22. “Sleigh Ride” by the Ronettes
23. “Old Toy Trains” by Roger Miller
24. “Happy Christmas (Was is Over) by John & Yoko with the Harlem Community Choir
25. “Auld Lang Syne (Alternate Mix) by the Beach Boys

Time: 1:14:41

Download it here: Christmas Redux

Christmas Redux Two

01. “Frosty the Snowman” by the Ronettes
02. “Christmas All Over Again” by Tom Petty
03. “Someday at Christmas” by Stevie Wonder
04. “Winter Wonderland” by the Cocteau Twins
05. “Joseph, Who Understood” by the New Pornographers
06. “Spotlight on Christmas” by Rufus Wainwright
07. “Christmas Wrapping” by the Waitresses
08. “Christmas Celebration” by B.B. King
09. “Jingle, Jangle” by The Rockfield Chorale
10. “Father Christmas” by the Kinks
11. “Jingle Bell Rock” by the Ventures
12. “Thanks for Christmas” by the Three Wisemen (XTC)
13. “Christmas Ain’t Christmas Without the One You Love” by the O’Jays
14. “Peace on Earth-Little Drummer Boy” by Bing Crosby & David Bowie
15. “Everyday is Christmas” by Swag
16. “Holiday Spirit” by the dB’s
17. “The Christmas Song” by Weezer
18. “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by the Cadillacs
19. “Purple Snowflakes” by Marvin Gaye
20. “Fairytale of New York” by the Pogues
21. “Jingle Bells (Buala Bas)” by the Clancy Brothers
22. “So Much Wine” by the Handsome Family
23. “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” by John Prine
24. “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” by Death Cab for Cutie
25. “New Year’s Revolution” by Graham Parker

Time: 1:16:20
Download it here: Christmas Redux Two

Christmas Redux Three

01. “The Christmas Sound” by the Swimmers
02. “It’s Christmas Time” by Yo La Tengo
03. “Put the Lights on the Tree” by Sufjan Stevens
04. “Your Christmas Whiskey” by the Minus 5
05. “Silent Night” by the Primitives
06. “Your Christmas is Going to the Dogs” by the Eels
07. “All That I Want” by the Weepies
08. “December 25th” by Desmond Reed
09. “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by the Crystals
10. “Santa’s Beard” by They Might Be Giants
11. “The Mods of Christmas” by Zumpano
12. “Christmas” by the Buzz of Delight
13. “Egg Nog” by Luna
14. “X-mas Song” by the Fireflies
15. “Christmas in Baghdad” by the Black Lips
16. “Donna and Blitzen” by Badly Drawn Boy
17. “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” by Bright Eyes
18. “Merry X-mas Everybody" by Slade
19. “Christmas Celebration” by Weezer
20. “Last Christmas” by Erlend Oye
21. “Rock Around the Christmas Tree” by Daniel Johnston
22. “Baby, Please Don’t Get Stoned (It’s X-mas) by Je Suis France
23. “Christmastime” by Aimee Mann & Michael Penn
24. “She’s Coming Home” by the Wailers
25. “Space Christmas” by Shonen Knife

Time: 1:10:36

Download it here: Christmas Redux Three

Christmas Redux Four

01. “Seasons Greetings” by Robbers on High Street [2:23]
02. “Merry Christmas Will Do” by Material Issue [3:36]
03. “Careless Santa” by Mono Puff [2:16]
04. “iPod Xmas” by Hello Saferide
05. “This Christmas” by Donny Hathaway [3:32]
06. “Christmas is Cancelled” by The Long Blondes [4:29]
07. “Let Me Sleep (Christmas Time)” by Pearl Jam [3:00]
08. “If Christmas Can’t Bring You Home” by The Reigning Sound [2:32]
09. “Ghost of Christmas” by Manic Street Preachers [3:39]
10. “I Believe in Father Christmas” by Greg Lake [3:22]
11. “Back Door Santa” by Clarence Carter [2:10]
12. “Christmas Eve” by Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci [1:51]
13. “Christmas Must Be Tonight” by The Band [3:41]
14. “Little Saint Nick (Single Version)” by The Beach Boys [2:11]
15. “There Ain’t No Sanity Claus” by The Damned [2:31]
16. “Christmas Vacation” by The Descendents [2:39]
17. “Power Pop Santa” by The Pointed Sticks [3:20]
18. “Holiday Hymn” by Orange Juice [3:01]
19. “Lonely This Christmas” by Carter USM [2:12]
20. “Christmas” by The Posies [3:53]
21. “Everyday Will Be Like a Holiday” by William Bell [2:39]
22. “Silver Bells” by Swearing at Motorists [2:03]
23. “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” by The Ronettes [2:42]
24. “It’s Christmas So We’ll Stop” by Frightened Rabbit [5:28]
25. “Christmas Time (Is Here Again) by The Beatles [3:03]

Total Time: 1:15:25

Download it here: Christmas Redux Four

Download the Artwork for Vol. 5 (Courtesey of T. Remley!): Christmas Redux Five Artwork

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A Pocketful of Posies!

I don't think I've ever done a show review here at Burn and Shine. Truth is, I don't go to many shows anymore. Lame, I know. There are a few reasons, mostly it's parenthood, but living in Chattanooga doesn't help. Since we got pregnant (our daughter turned two in August) I've seen a grand total of four shows: Superdrag twice, GBV last month and the Posies last weekend. This was my first time seeing the Posies, and I was inspired enough to slap together a little Posies-Primer. I would have posted this the day after the show, but having just posted the 1985 compilations earlier in the week, I felt it was a little too soon. I have a few spare minutes this Thanksgiving morning, while my better half goes grocery shopping, so here is a quickie show review (followed by the comp).

It was a great, if sparsely attended, triple bill last Saturday night at The Loft in Atlanta. A band I didn't care for, Aqueduct, opened the show right around 8:30pm and played for about a half hour. Brendon Benson, who I like, was next. Sidenote: I did not realize that Jon and Ken were in Brendan Benson's band on this tour. My wife and I both agreed that BB's songs were much better Posie-fied. I also did not realize that in some cities Benson headlined. That was not the case Saturday night in Atlanta-- thankfully, I was definitely there to see the Posies. Benson played a pretty good 45-minute set, then the Posies played for about an hour and a half.

They played nearly every song from the new record, Blood/Candy, and a smattering of their "greatest hits" over the course of about an hour and a half. There were also a couple of cool guest appearances, Linda Hopper (Oh-Ok, Magnapop) came on to sing Lisa Lobsinger's part on "Licenses to Hide" from the new record. She looked and sounded fantastic, even if she had to use a cheat sheet to remember the words. Mike Mills (R.E.M.) made an appearance at the end for an all hands on deck rendition of "September Gurls".

I knew it would be a fun night, but I had no idea just how much the Posies would flat out RAWK, Ken Stringfellow in particular-- he's got all the rock moves down pat. We were right in front of Jon Auer, and I certainly have a new found appreciation for his guitar chops-- I don't think he played a wrong note all night long.

As I mentioned earlier, the show was not packed. While I certainly enjoyed not being bumped into the whole night, it was kind of sad that a band that has been together for so long (Jon and Ken have been writing songs together since 1986, according to Wiki) and is this good can have such a small following-- at least in this part of the country.

Doing my small part to help rectify this wrong, I put together this 20 track compilation of the Posies. I took three songs from each of their proper albums (not including this year's Blood/Candy), plus two rarities. Hopefully this will introduce a few people to this fantastic band and their fairly deep discography. If you already know and love the Posies, then please feel free to point someone you know who has not been properly introduced to the Posies to this post. There was a Best of the Posies album released in 2000, but it only chronicles their time on Geffen and, I think, is currently out of print.

Happy listening and Happy Thanksgiving!

A Pocketful: An Introduction to the Posies, 1988-2005

01. I May Hate You Sometimes
02. Under Easy
03. Paint Me
04. My Big Mouth
05. Golden Blunders
06. Suddenly Mary
07. Saying Sorry to Myself
08. Dream All Day
09. Solar Sister
10. Flavor of the Month
11. Fight It (If You Want)
12. Grant Hart
13. Ontario
14. Every Bitter Drop
15. Somehow Everything
16. Looking Lost
17. Chainsmoking in the U.S.A.
18. I Guess You're Right
19. I Finally Found a Jungle
20. Conversations

Tracks 1-3 from Failure (1988)
Tracks 4-6 from Dear 23 (1990)
Track 7 from Yellow Pills Vol. 2: More of the Best of American Pop (1994, but it sounds more like a Dear 23 track so I stuck it before the FotB songs)
Tracks 8-10 from Frosting on the Beater (1993)
Tracks 11-13 from Amazing Disgrace (1996)
Tracks 14-16 from Sucess (1998)
Track 17 from Nice Cheekbones and a Ph.D. EP (2001)
Tracks 18-20 from Every Kind of Light (2005)

Total Time: 1:08:38

Download it here: A Pocketful of Posies!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Last November (one year ago today, actually!) I put up a compilation of some of my favorite songs from 1984. Today we celebrate 1985. The year of Back to the Future and The Breakfast Club: both of which had very successful soundtracks thanks to Huey Lewis and Simple Minds. Once again though, you won't find anything quite that huge represented on my compilation. Well, actually, on either of these compilations (more on that in a moment!). My focus is primarily with college rock. Just about every one of these 38 songs would have gotten the most attention left of the dial back in 1985. One of the songs here managed to scrape the bottom half of Billboard's Hot 100. Another was on a very successful album, you maybe remember this fantastic video?

But for the most part these songs were beloved by few-- some even creeping into "obscure" territory. Two discs worth this time around, because I had a plethora of songs vying to make the cut. The first disc is very much in the same realm as last year's 1984 edition. The bonus disc is devoted to bands with an Americana bent. Some have said that the Mekons' album Fear and Whiskey from 1985 "ushered in the age of Alt-Country as a marketing category." So I figured I would give that little niche a compilation of its own.

Happy Listening!


01. The Cult, "She Sells Sanctuary" [4:17]
02. Dramarama, "Anything, Anything" [3:19]
03. Robyn Hitchcok, "Egyptian Cream" [3:32]
04. Plasticland, "Posing For Pictures" [2:06]
05. a-ha, "Love is Reason" [3:07]
06. The Three O'Clock, "Her Head's Revolving" [3:11]
07. The Style Council, "Walls Come Tumbling Down" [3:22]
08. The Sisters of Mercy, "Walk Away" [3:26]
09. Butthole Surfers, "Mexican Caravan" [2:41]
10. The Lyres, "Someone Who'll Treat You Right Now" [3:06]
11. Martin Newell, "Golden Lane" [3:30]
12. The Chameleons, "Perfume Garden" [4:28]
13. Prefab Sprout, "Faron" [3:41]
14. Dinosaur Jr (Barlow), "Gargoyle" [2:11]
15. The Screaming Blue Messiahs, "Someone To Talk To" [3:36]
16. Tall Dwarfs, "Sleet" [2:09]
17. Hüsker Dü (Hart), "Green Eyes" [2:55]
18. Dukes of Stratosphere, "My Love Explodes" [3:31]
19. New Order, "Sub-Culture" [3:27]
20. Squeeze, "King George Street" [3:48]
21. Sonic Youth & Lydia Lunch, "Death Valley '69" [5:11]
22. Beat Happening, "Foggy Eyes" [2:45]
23. Jonathan Richman, "Now is Better Than Before" [2:08]

Total Time: 1:15:16

Download it here: 1985

1985: The Birth of Alt-Country?

01. The Mekons, "Hard To Be Human Again" [3:53]
02. Beat Farmers, "Bigger Stones" [2:22]
03. The Three Johns, "Brainbox (He's a Brainbox)" [4:03]
04. The Long Ryders, "Looking for Lewis and Clark" [3:58]
05. Danny & Dusty, "Send Me a Postcard" [2:58]
06. Camper Van Beethoven, "Where the Hell is Bill?" [2:06]
07. The Del Fuegos, "Don't Run Wild" [3:30]
08. Jason & the Scorchers, "White Lies" [3:21]
09. The Blasters, "Dark Night" [3:44]
10. Lone Justice, "Ways to Be Wicked" [3:25]
11. The Connells, "Seven" [3:08]
12. Tom Waits, "Jockey Full of Bourbon" [2:42]
13. Green on Red, "Sixteen Ways" [3:38]
14. The Knitters, "The New World" [2:51]
15. Thin White Rope, "Dead Grammas on a Train" [2:53]

Total Time: 48:29

Download it here: 1985: The Birth of Alt-Country?

Here's a link for the jewel case artwork, courtesy of T. Remley: 1985 Jewel Case Art

Friday, October 22, 2010

Halloween Compilation Artwork

Once again T. Remley has supplied the artwork for my latest compilation. Download the jewel case artwork here: Candy Apples & Razor Blades Vol. 3 Artwork

Just in case you missed the Halloween comp earlier this week, you can find it here: Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

R.I.P. Ari Up

Slits' Ari Up Dead at 48. Sad. The weird thing is that I just recently picked up a copy of Simon Reynolds' Totally Wired: Post Punk Interviews and Overviews, and she's the first interview featured. I still don't know much about her, but I do know she was NOT a typical girl.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Happy Halloween!

We are less than two weeks out from Halloween, so I figured I'd go ahead and post my annual volume of Candy Apples & Razor Blades, so that those of you who will be hosting Halloween parties this weekend will have some new tunes to impress your friends. [Edited to add: that was a joke!] Halloween also marks the official anniversary of Burn and Shine-- it turns two this year! It has been really fun posting my comps here, and those of you who have commented, I really appreciate it-- keep those comments coming! If you are new to B&S and would like to find the first two compilations in this series, please click on the "Halloween" tag at the bottom of this post.

Before I say a few words about the new Halloween comp, I'd like to call your attention to the following trailer for a new series which debuts on AMC on Halloween night called The Walking Dead:

It looks awesome, so if you can't watch it that night, be sure to set your DVRs! That's all I'll say about it, feel free to use the search engine of your choice to find out more as there is lots of internet chatter going on about it.

As for this year's edition of CA&RB, it was a treat putting it together. Some returning players from previous Halloween comps are Roky Erickson and the Misfits, of course. I imagine Burn & Shine will be long gone before I run out of songs by those two Halloween friendly artists. Superdrag makes their second appearance on CA&RB with "Take Your Spectre Away" from their split EP with the Anniversary. Helium, which was the very last band I cut when I put together my Matador @ 21 compilation earlier this month, makes their first appearance on any compilation here at Burn and Shine. And of course, there are several more Post Punk bands on here: Australia's Beasts of Bourbon, Boston's La Peste, Tulsa's Los Reactors, and Tucson's Green on Red. There are others that I'd like to mention, but I'll just finish by telling you that the compilation ends with a request. One of my faithful readers asked for "Halloween" by the Dream Syndicate via email shortly after I posted last year's comp. How could I resist?

Creepy Listening!

Candy Apples & Razor Blades Vol. 3: Still More Music for All Hallow's Eve!

01. "Superstitious" [1968] from the Monkees' Head
02. "The Witch" [1964], The Sonics
03. "Bloodletting (The Vampire Song)" [1990], Concrete Blonde
04. "Going to Hell" [1998], The Brian Jonestown Massacre
05. "Ghouls Night Out" [1986], The Misfits
06. "Ghost Ride" [2006], Nebula
07. "Wanna Be a Vampire Too, Baby [1994], Helium
08. "She's Wicked" [1985, Peel Session], The Fuzztones
09. "She is the New Thing" [2007], The Horrors
10. "Mommy's Little Monster" [1983], Social Distortion
11. "Zombie Boy" [2008], The Magnetic Fields
12. "Devil Song" [1988], Camper Van Beethoven
13. "Take Your Spectre Away" [2001], Superdrag
14. "Stake Thru My Heart" [1998], The Fiends
15. "Psycho" [1984], Beasts of Bourbon
16. "I Put a Spell on You" [1967], Creedence Clearwater Revival
17. "A Guide to the Worlds Most Fantastic Monsters" [2009], Hallelujah the Hills
18. "There's a Ghost in My House" [1967], R. Dean Taylor
19. "Black Coffin" [2009], The Fresh & Onlys
20. "Black Night" [1982], Green on Red
21. "Witching Stone" [2009], Black Heart Procession
22. "Be a Zombie" [1981], Los Reactors
23. "Haunt" [1986], Roky Erickson
24. "Better Off Dead" [1978], La Peste
25. "Halloween" [1982], Dream Syndicate

Total Time: 1:15:58

Download it here: Candy Apples & Razor Blades Vol. 3: Still More Music for All Hallow's Ever

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Matador @ 21!

There was a time in the early/mid nineties when it seemed every other new release I bought was on Matador Records. I’m pretty sure that it must be the indie label which is most represented in my record collection. This past weekend, Matador celebrated it’s twenty-first year of existence in Las Vegas with an all-star cast of past and present bands. Last Tuesday, Matador released a fancy little box set to commemorate the occasion with all the proceeds going to charity. I figured I needed to do my own little tribute to the label, so I put together a Matador Sampler of my own.

Twenty-one songs, all culled from what I think of as Matador’s Golden era: 1991-1999. Not to say that there aren’t some fine artists on the label these days, but these are the artists that made me fall in love with the label and kept me coming back for more. Limiting my choices to a nine year period was also an easy way for me to whittle down the number of possible tracks to 21. I did not include any tracks that are on the new box set, nor are there any tracks which may have appeared on the three previous Matador anniversary compilations: What’s Up Matador?, Everything is Nice, and Matador at 15. So this compilation will serve as a great introduction to the label for those of you unfamiliar, and will work nicely as a companion disc for those of you diehard fans who already picked up the box set.

Happy Listening!

Matador @ 21!

01. Yo La Tengo, “Stockholm Syndrome” [1997]. James McNew takes over lead vocals for this should have been a hit from Hoboken’s finest trio.

02. Silkworm, “Couldn’t You Wait” [1995, Marco Collins Session]. I love, love, love this version of “Couldn’t You Wait”!

03. Guided by Voices, “Little Whirl” [1995]. Since I’ve given you all the Pollard you need for awhile, I thought I’d let Tobin Sprout get the spotlight here. From GBV's second album for Matador, Alien Lanes.

04. Bettie Serveert, “Tom Boy” [1992]. As if the world needed another reason to visit Amsterdam?

05. Railroad Jerk, “Bang the Drum” [1995]. The Fall meets Jon Spencer on this romp-- you'll be singing along the first time through.

06. Chavez, “Unreal is Here” [1996]. Matt Sweeney has collaborated with a lot of talented people, but his best work might be the two albums released by Chavez.

07. Cat Power, “Say” [1998]. Backed by Australia’s Dirty Three, this is from my favorite Cat Power album, Moon Pix.

08. Cornelius, “Chapter 8 – Seashore and Horizon” [1997]. Keigo Oyamada (aka: Cornelius) creates interesting sound-collages and this one features the Apples in Stereo.

09. Tommy Keene, “Tuesday Morning” [1998]. Tommy Keene put out two excellent LPs on Matador: Ten Years After (1996) and Isolation Party (1998).

10. Superchunk, “Throwing Things” [1991]. This track was previously featured on Burn and Shine in video form when I celebrated North Carolina during Power Pop Month.

11. San Francisco Seals, “Winter Song” [1994]. Jangly guitars never sounded so good.

12. Pavement, “Elevate Me Later” [1994]. From my favorite Pavement long player: Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain.

13. Bailterspace, “Untied” [1995]. New Zealand’s finest super-group!

14. Spoon, “All the Negatives Have Been Destroyed” [1996]. People who don’t like the first two Spoon records are just plain wrong.

15. Come, “Half Life” [1996]. Four albums, all on Matador, is all we got from the collaboration of Thalia Zedek and Chris Brokaw. All of them worth tracking down.

16. Fuck, “To My Gurl” [1997]. You have to respect a band that would choose ‘Fuck’ as their moniker. Imagine pitching this band to any label, let alone one that was distributed by Warner’s at the time.

17. Teenage Fanclub, “So Far Gone” [1991]. B-Side to their fabulous “God Knows It’s True” single.

18. Guitar Wolf, “Fujiyama Attack” [1999]. The needles were most definitely in the red when this garage-stomper was recorded.

19. The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, “Brenda” [1994]. Jon Spencer’s schtick has not aged well, at least not for me. For a brief moment there in early 90's, however, I really thought he might save Rock & Roll.

20. Belle & Sebastian, “A Century of Fakers” [1997]. Technically this did not get released by Matador until 2000, but since it was a reissue of a band already on the roster, I included it here.

21. Liz Phair, “Glory” [1993]. I recently listened to Exile in Guyville for the first time in ages. It still holds up.

Total Time: 1:01:59

Download it here: Matador @21!

Download Jewel Case Artwork here: Thanks rem2rigs!

Thursday, September 30, 2010


Hey folks, just wanted to let you know that I got to participate in the latest Mixtured Mix Tape. For those of you who don't know about it, read this: About Mixtured.

This month's theme was "Songs that would have cleared the dance floor of your senior prom." Though I only knew one other contributor on the compilation, it ended up being a very good batch of songs with some of my all-time favorite artists represented. You can stream the mix here and read all the comments by the participants: Mix #2: Songs That Would’ve Cleared the Dance Floor at Your Senior Prom.

Looking forward, I've got a compilation ready for next week (hint: it's got something to do with the festivities in Las Vegas this weekend!), but then I'll be off till I post the third installment of Candy Apples & Razorblades-- at least as far as posting compilations is concerned. I'm still anxiously awaiting comments and questions and recommendations regarding my Post-Punk series-- as my post from earlier today was met by a resounding chorus of crickets!

Rebellious Jukebox Jewel Case Artwork.

Hey Folks,

Todd Remley, one of my readers who I'd never 'met' until now, was kind enough to put together some artwork for all five volumes of Rebellious Jukebox. I asked him if I could share it here at Burn and Shine with the rest of you, and he was fine with that. Here's a sample of the first volume:

Download the artwork for all five volumes here: Rebellious Jukebox Jewel Case Artwork

Also, now that you've had a chance to see (and maybe listen?) to the whole series, I'd love to hear your thoughts. What great Post-Punk bands did I miss? (In particular, I'd love get some recommendations regarding Post-Punk bands from countries other than the U.K. and U.S.) What great Post-Punk track featured here had you never heard? Maximum Jack, why the hell did you include ___________, they are complete shite?! Feel free to list your favorite top ten (or however many) Post-Punk artists or albums or both. Did you ever see any of these bands live? Share your experiences here, please. Speaking of live Post-Punk. I'll leave you with these four lads from Leeds:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 5: Noise

The fifth and final installment in my Post-Punk series. A caveat: I'm not a huge fan of bands that are anti-music, so this should probably be subtitled, "Noise, for People Who Don't Like Noise". Some of these tracks are downright danceable, for crying out loud. Just check out the Throbbing Gristle track, "Hot on the Heels of Love", featured here.

I make these comps primarily for my enjoyment, and then the idea is to share them here. So I love every track here, and have probably listened to this compilation more times than any of the others-- even if I don't sit around all day listening to the more difficult albums by some of the artists featured here. I've never understood the concept of listening to noise, and, let's face it, some of these artists have put out albums that make Lou Reed's Metal Machine Music seem like soft rock.

It's true: I don't understand noise, but I do realize how innovative these artists were (many, still are!). Their bold attempts to go where no band had gone before really pushed the envelope, at a time when Rock & Roll seemed to be regressing.

So if you are a little skeptical of the idea of a "Noise" compilation, please, go into this with an open mind. On the other hand, if you are already a fan of the genre, be forewarned that this compilation will probably seem tame.

Happy Listening!

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 5: Noise

01. Theoretical Girls (Jeffrey Lohn), “Theoretical Girls” [ca. 1978]
02. Savage Republic, “Machinery” [1982]
03. Big Black, “Bad Houses” [1986]
04. Chrome, “March of the Chrome Police (A Cold Clammy Bombing)” [1978]
05. The Birthday Party, “Zoo Music Girl” [1981]
06. Caberet Voltaire, “Landslide” [1981]
07. The Ex, “Human Car” [1980]
08. DNA, “You & You” [1978]
09. Public Image Ltd. “Flowers of Romance” [1981]
10. Killing Joke, “The Wait” [1980]
11. Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft, “Nacht Arbeit” [1980]
12. Naked Raygun, “Swingo2” [1983]
13. Notekillers, “The Zipper” [1980]
14. The Mekons, “Karen” [1980]
15. Pere Ubu, “The Modern Dance” [1978]
16. Sonic Youth, “I Don’t Want to Push It” [1982]
17. The Pop Group, “We Are Prostitutes” [1979]
18. Throbbing Gristle, “Hot on the Heels of Love” [1979]
19. X [Australia], “Suck Suck” [1979]
20. SPK, “Mekano” [1979]
21. Swans, “Big Strong Boss” [1983]
22. This Heat, “S.P.Q.R.” [1981]
23. Virgin Prunes, “Pagan Lovesong” [1982]
24. Crass, “White Punks on Hope”[1979]
25. Flipper, “Love Canal” [1980]
26. Theoretical Girls (Glenn Branca), “You Got Me” [1978]

Total Time: 1:19:04

Download it here: Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 5: Noise

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 4: Pop

It will come as no surprise to those of you who have been reading Burn and Shine for any time at all, that the “Pop” volume of my Post-Punk series would most likely be my favorite. Guilty as charged-- I can’t help it, it’s in my DNA. I could listen to songs like the Soft Boys’ “Queen of Eyes” or Hüsker Dü’s “Pink Turns to Blue” a million times and never grow weary of them. While both of those tracks have been near and dear to me for quite some time, this volume actually has the greatest percentage of songs which are relatively new to me.

As I previously mentioned here at B&S, discovering Black Randy & the Metrosquad a few weeks ago was the instigator for this Post-Punk series. I also mentioned in that very same post, that I recently picked up The Lines’ early singles compilation. I cherry picked their very first A-side for this compilation, the almost Power Pop, “White Night”.

The Cigarettes are another fairly new to me band. I have to thank Laura @ Needles + Pins for turning me onto them about a year ago. Thanks LCP!

Scotland’s tv21 is another new to me band. They only released one album during their heyday, Thin Red Line from 1981. I don’t remember who recommended it to me, but it stayed in my car player for about a week solid. BTW, I don't think it was ever released on CD, so you will have to find this using your favorite music search engine (I like Captain Crawl). RIYL: Echo and the Bunnymen or the Teardrop Explodes.

The rest of this compilation is filled with artists that I discovered while I was working at the Disc Exchange in Knoxville (1999-2006). In particular: Felt, Orange Juice, the Embarrassment, the Homosexuals, Wah! and the Swell Maps. Ah, the record store. Those were the days!

Happy Listening!

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 4: Pop

01. Devo, “Uncontrollable Urge" [1978]
02. The Lines, “White Night” [1978]
03. The Soft Boys, “The Queen of Eyes” [1980]
04. Boys Next Door, “The Night Watchmen” [1979]
05. The Fall, “Rebellious Jukebox” [1979]
06. Buzzcocks, “Breakdown” [1977]
07. Hüsker Dü, “Pink Turns to Blue” [1984]
08. Alternative TV, “The Ancient Rebels” [1981]
09. The Associates, “A Matter of Gender” [1981]
10. The Cigarettes, “Can’t Sleep at Night” [1980]
11. Dream Syndicate, “That’s What You Always Say" [1982, EP Version]
12. The Embarrassment, “Sexy Singer Girl" [1981]
13. Felt, “Something Sends Me To Sleep” [1981]
14. The Homosexuals, “Walk Before Imitate” [1978]
15. Magazine, “Touch and Go” [1978]
16. The Monochrome Set, “The Lighter Side of Dating” [1980]
17. Orange Juice, “Falling and Laughing” [1980]
18. Swell Maps, “H.S. Art” [1979]
19. Wipers, “Up Front” [1980]
20. The Teardrop Explodes, “Second Head” [1980]
21. Telvison Personalities, “The Glittering Prizes” [1981]
22. tv21, “Waiting for the Drop” [1981]
23. Wah! “Other Boys” [1981]
24. XTC, “Things Fall to Bits” [ca. 1978]
25. 100 Flowers, “Our Fallout” [1983]
26. Black Randy & the Metrosquad, “I Slept in an Arcade” [1980]
27. Stiff Little Fingers, “Bloody Sunday” [1980]

Total Time: 1:19:37

Download it here: Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 4: Pop

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 3: Swing

“Disco Sucks”
might have been a mantra for some of the original punks (or really, their brainless followers), but that is most certainly not the case with most of the Post-Punks. As evidenced on the first two installments of Rebellious Jukebox, dancing was very much a part of the Post-Punk zeitgeist. This third volume, Swing, continues to show that in addition to the Velvets and Roxy, these artists were also paying attention to Chic and Donna Summer.

Volume Three begins and ends with the vocals of Alan Vega, who shows us yet another unlikely influence on a Post-Punk artist: his crooning has often been compared to Elvis Presley, and “Fireball” might be the prime example. His band, Suicide (a duo actually, with keyboardist Martin Rev), was part of the original CBGB's scene (along with Talking Heads and Come On-- also featured here) and could easily be included on a Proto-Punk compilation.

The European continent makes a fairly sizeable contribution on this volume of Rebellious Jukebox as bands from Germany (Kraftwerk), France (Metal Urbain) and Belgium (The Honeymoon Killers) all make an appearance. I realize this series is very Anglo-American, but I intend to remedy this on a future installment (next September, maybe?).

Another Athens, GA band makes the cut here, bringing that quaint Southern city’s total up to four (the other three bands were all on the first volume: Pylon, B-52’s and Oh-Ok). This time it’s the vastly under-rated Method Actors, who have recently been given the reissue treatment from Acute Records.

Another band that are just now starting to get their due thanks to a recent reissue is San Francisco's the Units. If you aren’t from the Bay Area and didn’t live through the golden era of Post-Punk, you’d be forgiven if you thought “High Pressure Days” was a long lost Devo track. Probably my favorite track on this compilation, and the one newest to me, as I had never heard it before Community Library put out History of the Units: The Early Years 1977-1983 last year.

Enough out of me, Happy Listening!

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 3: Swing

01. Alan Vega, “Fireball” [1981]
02. Gang of Four, “I Found That Essence Rare” [1979, Peel Session]
03. Depeche Mode, “Photographic” [1981, Some Bizzare Version]
04. Kraftwerk, “The Model” [1978]
05. Minutemen, “Life as a Rehearsal” [1982]
06. Fire Engines, “Discord” [1981, Peel Session]
07. Talking Heads, “I Zimbra” [1979]
08. Come On, “A Kitchen in the Clouds” [1978]
09. Tuxedomoon, “Incubus (Blue Suit)” [1981]
10. The Sound, “The Fire” [1981]
11. The Better Beatles, “I’m Down” [1981]
12. The Honeymoon Killers, “Histoire À Suivre” [1982]
13. The Method Actors, “My Time” [1981]
14. Soft Cell, “Bedsitter” [1981]
15. Colin Newman, “& Jury” [1980]
16. Manicured Noise, “Metronome” [1979]
17. Suburbs, “Tiny People” [1980]
18. Units, “High Pressure Days” [1980]
19. Caberet Voltaire, “Landslide” [1981]
20. Echo & the Bunnymen, “Read it in Books” [1979, Original Single Version]
21. Metal Urbain, “Hysterie Connective” [1978]
22. The Wake, “Favour” [1982]
23. James Chance, “Contort Yourself” [1978, Original Version]
24. Scritti Politti, “Double Beat” [1978]
25. Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, “Electricity” [1980]
26. Suicide, “Diamonds, Fur coat, Champagne” [1979]

Total Time: 1:19:08

Download it here: Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 3: Swing

PLEASE NOTE: When I zipped this puppy up and loaded up at Megaupload, I was in a bit of a rush, apparenttly, and the title for this comp comes up as "Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 3: Gloom". Of course, this is volume 3, but it should say "Swing". Instead of rezipping, I thought I'd just let you know and you can fix it once you've downloaded it. Apologies and Thanks Eric for noticing and letting me know!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 2: Gloom

I think I mentioned this in last year's Halloween post, but as most of you know the Post-Punks were a gloomy bunch. Some of the very first Post-Punk bands I gravitated toward had a Gothic bent: The Cure, Siouxsie, Depeche Mode, the Jesus and Mary Chain, Sonic Youth (even R.E.M. and the Smiths neither of which will be represented on the first five volumes of Rebellious Jukebox). Not exactly sure why that is: I'm not a "black on the outside because black is how I feel on the inside" kind of guy. Looking back, I think it was sort of a natural progression from my heavy metal phase. What some of these bands were doing, isn't too far removed from those early Black Sabbath records that I love (just check out A Certain Ratio's "All Night Party" to see what I mean).

Interesting too, that this compilation features many of the artists before they were stars here in the U.S. One notable exception is Gary Numan, who's song, "Metal" was on the very same album as his #1 smash hit, "Cars". Simple Minds, the Human League, the Cure, New Order and Adam Ant (doing his best Brian Eno impression) are all here before they became household names a little later in the 80's. I even kick the compilation off with Warsaw, which was essentially Joy Division, before they became Joy Division. Most the others here never reached much more than cult status fame, although in Bauhaus's case that cult was rather large. Probably the most obscure band on this comp is Your Food out of Louisville. A band I recently learned about and just had to get them on here. There is one track on here that sticks out like a happy thumb when you listen to it. I won't give it away, but I figured I needed to break up all the gloom. I didn't want to be held responsible for someone slashing their wrist listening to this playlist.

Gloomy listening!

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 2: Gloom

01. Warsaw, “Leaders of Men” [ca. 1978]
02. The Comsat Angels, “Independence Day” [1980]
03. Fad Gadget, “Collapsing New People” [1984]
04. The Feelies, “The Boy With Perpetual Nervousness” [1980, Demo Version]
05. Crime, “San Francisco’s Doomed” [1978]
06. Bauhaus, “Silent Hedges” [1982]
07. The Jesus & Mary Chain, “Taste of Cindy” [1985]
08. A Certain Ratio, “All Night Party” [1979, Original Single Version]
09. The Cure, “Plastic Passion” [1979]
10. New Order, “Dreams Never End” [1981]
11. Gary Numan, “Metal” [1979]
12. Desperate Bicycles, “Obstructive” [1980]
13. Bunnydrums, “Shiver” [1983]
14. Clock DVA, “4 Hours [1981, Original Single Version]
15. Human League, “The Path of Least Resistance” [1979]
16. Mission of Burma, “Trem Two” [1982]
17. Wire, “Marooned” [1978]
18. Your Food, “Leave” [1984]
19. The Durutti Column, “Sketch for Summer” [1979]
20. Simple Minds, “Reel to Real” [1979]
21. Ultravox, “While I’m Alive” [1977]
22. Laughing Clowns, “ Clown Town” [1981]
23. Adam & the Ants, “Cleopatra” [1979]
24. Josef K, “Romance” [1979]
25. The Undertones, “Boys Will Be Boys” [1980]
26. Joy Division, “She’s Lost Control” [1979]

Total Time: 1:19:37

Download it here: Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 2: Gloom

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 1: Women

"Young people have a biological right to be excited about the times they're living through. If you are very lucky, that hormonal urgency is matched by the insurgency of the era, and your built-in adolescent need for amazement and belief coincides with a period of objective abundance. The prime years of postpunk-- the half decade from 1978-82-- were like that: a fortune." Simon Reynolds, from Rip it Up and Start Again.

Okay here we go, today I'm posting the first volume in my Post-Punk Series, Rebellious Jukebox. As I mentioned in my last post, there are five Wednesdays in September and I'll drop one compilation on each of those. Here's what's in store: 5 Discs, 132 Songs, 6.5 Hours worth of Post-Punk madness. These five discs are separated into five mini-themed comps: Women, Gloom, Swing, Pop, and Noise.

When I first decided to tackle Post-Punk, I thought I would do three maybe four compilations at 20 tracks each. Needless to say, that expanded pretty quickly and I just didn't have the heart to make many cuts. There are 130 (129 if you're picky) artists represented. I'll explain the ones I doubled up as we get to them. The earliest track I used is from 1977, and the latest track is from 1986. Most of them, however, fall within the five-year period generally considered to be the golden age of Post-Punk, 1978-1982.

I said I didn't make many cuts and, of course, that's not entirely true. Instead of just randomly leaving out an artist I loved, I decided to skip certain sub-genres of Post-Punk, which I felt could be tackled at some later date. In particular, you'll find no American Hardcore, Ska Revival, Mod Revival or Kiwi Pop in this series and very few artists from Australia. The New Romantics are here only in their earliest form, as are the Synth Poppers. All of this is subjective. I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts on my picks and omissions. I've already started compiling stuff for future volumes, so any recommendations you have will be taken very seriously! I don't claim to have heard everything, and I'm always looking for new stuff to listen to.

Today's compilation features the Women of Post-Punk. In a way, it is the perfect introduction disc to the series and to Post-Punk in general, as nearly every sub-genre is represented within it's 27 tracks. Of the songs I selected, I'm pretty sure I only heard two of them back in the day. In the late 70's and early 80's I was more interested in AOR, and didn't really know much about Post-Punk. I did have a friend who was way ahead of his time. In 1979 (we were in sixth grade), he made me a tape with the Sex Pistols' Nevermind the Bollocks on one side and the B-52's self-titled debut on the other.

I wish I could say that that tape immediately changed my listening habits. Alas, it would be a few years before I discovered how great that gift was. Let's put it in perspective. In sixth grade I was still very much in my Kiss phase-- Destroyer was my favorite album of all time. My older siblings (sister: 10 years older, brother: 8 years older) both listened to a lot of music, but my sister was buying 12" Disco singles and my brother was an avid Classic Rock fan at the time. Radio in Chattanooga wasn't that great (it still kinda sucks), and we didn't get MTV in our area until '81 or so. That tape sounded like it came from some other planet, but I did listen to it all the way through, so technically the first song I heard on this compilation was "52 Girls", though I can't claim it made much of an impression at the time. The other track, of course, would be "Mental Hopscotch" which I heard via MTV in 1982. It is the most New Wave-y track on any of the comps, but I still think it's a great song and Missing Persons' Spring Session M is miles better than anything else the Bozzio's ever produced and a nice little document of how Post-Punk influenced the mainstream.

Enough babbling, I'll let the ladies take it from here.

Happy Listening!

Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 1: Women

01. The Slits, “Instant Hit” [1979]
02. Au Pairs, “We’re So Cool” [1981]
03. Suburban Lawns, “Unable” [1981]
04. Essential Logic, “ Fanfare in the Garden” [1981]
05. Lizzy Mercier Descloux, “Wawa” [1979]
06. Pylon, “Stop It” [1980]
07. Bush Tetras, “You Taste Like the Tropics” [1980]
08. Delta 5, “Anticipation” [1980]
09. Siouxsie & the Banshees, “Mirage” [1978]
10. Family Fodder, “Savoir Faire”[1980]
11. LiLiPuT/Kleenex, “Ain’t You” [1978]
12. Young Marble Giants, “Final Day” [1979]
13. Romeo Void, “Myself to Myself” [1981]
14. X, “Nausea” [1980]
15. Snatch, “All I Want” [1978]
16. Altered Images, “Dead Pop Stars” [1981]
17. B-52’s, “52 Girls” [1979]
18. ESG, “Moody” [1981]
19. Missing Persons, “Mental Hopscotch” [1982]
20. Animals & Men, “Terraplane Fixation [1980]
21. The Raincoats, “Fairytale in the Supermarket [1979]
22. Tom Tom Club, “On, On, On, On . . .” [1981]
23. Oh-Ok, “Brother” [1982]
24. The Flying Lizards, “TV” [1980]
25. Inflatable Boy Clams, “Marin” [1981]
26. Teenage Jesus & the Jerks, “Orphans” [1978]
27. Marine Girls, “In Love” [1981]

Total Time 1:15:47

Download it here: Rebellious Jukebox Vol. 1: Women

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Post-Punk Series Slated for September!

Just so you know where I'm coming from, someone posted the above video on a GBV forum that I frequent, and it has sent me on a three week Post-Punk bender. Not kidding, I've been obsessed. I'd never heard nor even heard of Black Randy. Here I thought I had listened to all the great bands from the Post-Punk era. How Wrong I was! Seriously, there were sooooo many great bands, some of them put out a single or an album or two then, sadly, vanished. Others went on to fame and fortune in a Post-MTV world. Still others, had formidable careers, but garnered little more than cult status. Whatever, there was lots of great music to be had during those heady days just after the Sex Pistols turned the world on its head.

Long story short, I've scoured my collection for nuggets to share here at Burn and Shine. I've also tracked down a few things that I had never heard (like the spectacular reissue of the Lines early singles which came out on Acute a couple years ago: Memory Span. As per usual, the blogosphere was a tremendous help in finding stuff that I've only got on vinyl or stuff that has never seen digital reissue.

Just as in my Power Pop series, this is by no means to be taken as a definitive collection of Post-Punk. I always try to balance my compilations by using a few tracks that aren't quite as well known, and put them along side tracks that are. I mean, if you haven't got a copy of "Love Will Tear Us Apart" or "Damaged Goods" then by all means track those down and listen to them before downloading my comps. Along those lines, I heartily recommend (if you have any interest in the genre at all), picking up a copy of Simon Reynolds' Rip It Up and Start Again: POSTPUNK 1978-1984 (pictured below). I've been rereading it over the last few days, and my compilation works as a nice companion (especially the first half of the book).

So what is Post-Punk? You may be asking yourself, well let me direct you to the Wikipedia definition, which is pretty good: Post-punk. It can be a bit murky, and I think everyone has their own general idea of what bands get the tag. Does R.E.M.? How 'bout Duran Duran? Nirvana? Good cases could be made for all of those, yet they didn't make my compilation. For me it's a gut feeling. You'll see soon enough who made my comps, which by the way, I've separated into five volumes: Women, Gloom, Swing, Pop, and Noise. You might be surprised to find out who I've put where, but hopefully the playlists make some sort of sonic sense.

There are Five Wednesdays in September, and I will post my comps on each of those (I promise). I may not have the energy to do track by track commentary, but I'll share some of my thoughts on each compilation. For now, I'll leave you with the cover art, which I made in about 13 minutes in true, DIY fashion:

See y'all on Wednesday!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Veronica Falls

I'm a sucker for jangly guitars and boy/girl vocals. So when I stumbled upon the above video, it made me smile. Didn't know anything about this London Quartet, but it was obvious that they love the old C-86 Bands as much as I do. Apparently, they have yet to release a full length, but they have released one 7" single which pairs the title track (see video above), "Found Love in a Graveyard", with a very nice cover of Roky Erickson's "Starry Eyes". Unfortunately, the 7" is already OOP, so I missed out on snagging a hard copy. I did find downloads for both tracks via this blog: Transparent (thank you very much!).

Another 7" titled "Beachy Head" is supposedly on the way from Captured Tracks, so be on the lookout for that. In the meantime, you can download the two tracks from the new 7" here: Guerolito Music. Hopefully there's an album on the horizon!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Free Robyn Hitchcock Single!

Have I ever mentioned how much I love Robyn Hitchcock? Probably not often enough. He is currently giving away a new single by his new project called The Hungry Moment @ RobynHitchock.com, but only for one week (starting today). The new band is comprised of Robyn on vocals and guitar, Abigail Washburn (vocal & banjo) Rayna Gellerd (vocal & fiddle) and he calls it a "psyche and western group". You can get the free download here: The Hungry Moment: Thank You b/w Time Girl & Violet Rain. I'll also leave you with a live version of my favorite song off the new RH & V3 record, Propellor Time:

Friday, August 13, 2010

No Las Vegas But How 'Bout GBV in Hotlanta?-- Who's with me?

Sadly, I'm not going to be able to go to Las Vegas for Matador's 21st B-day Shindig. Those of you who do, drink a beer or two for me. I have, however, gone ahead and purchased tickets for the Saturday, October 23 show (just two days before my own birthday!) at Buckethead Theatre in Atlanta. What I did not realize until I purchased these tickets is that Sweet Apple is opening that show!!! If you don't know, Sweet Apple is Jon Petkovic and Tim Parnin (of Cobra Verde), Dave Sweetapple (Witch), and J mother-effing Mascis! Seriously, their new album Love & Desperation has been in constant rotation since I got a copy back in April. Here's the lead single:

Yes, this should be a pretty great night for Rock & Roll.

Oh and just in case you haven't seen the dates for the GBV Reunion tour, here you go:

9/30 - East Side Drive, Austin, TX (On Sale 7/16 at 12pm) *
10/3 - Pearl Theatre @ Palms Hotel, Las Vegas NV SOLD OUT Matador at Twenty-One Las Vegas
10/4 - Wiltern, Los Angeles CA (On Sale TBA) *
10/5 - Warfield, San Francisco CA (Pre-sale FRI 7/23 10am-10pm password "bee thousand", Regular On Sale SAT 7/25 at 10am) *
10/7 - Crystal Ballroom, Portland OR (On Sale 7/20 at 10am) *
10/9 - Showbox So Do, Seattle WA (On Sale 7/26 at 10am) *
10/12 - First Avenue, Minneapolis MN (On Sale 7/16 at 12pm) *
10/13 - The Vic, Chicago IL (On Sale 7/24 at 10am) *
10/15 - Southgate House, Newport KY (Cincinnati) (On Sale 7/16 at 10am)
10/16 - Outlands Live, Columbus OH (On Sale 7/15)
10/21 - 9:30 Club, Washington D.C. (On Sale 7/17 at 10am) =
10/22 - Cat's Cradle, Carrboro NC (On Sale 7/16 at 10am) =
10/23 - Buckhead Theater, Atlanta GA (On Sale 7/24 at 10am) =
11/4 - Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (On NBC at 12:35/11:45C)
11/5 - Paradise, Boston MA (On Sale 7/17 at 12pm) +
11/6 - Trocadero, Philadelphia PA (On Sale 7/17 at 12pm) +
11/7 - Terminal 5, NYC (On Sale 7/23 at 12pm) +
* with Times New Viking
= with Sweet Apple
+ with Blitzen Trapper

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Check Out the New Header!

I know, right? I've technically been on blogger for three years now-- though I didn't actually really start blogging here till Halloween '08-- and I'm just now getting around to fancy-ing up this place. Okay, not really but I really love my new header! Big thanks to Sherri from The Claw, who I just recently figured out went to high school with me, for doing such a nice job. She also did the header for my Hixson High School Tennis Blog, so you can mosey on over there to check out another sample of her handy work. If you need any graphic design work, I suggest you drop her an email (headersforhire@hotmail.com). I'm telling you, she is lightning fast!

While I'm here, have you all had a chance to check out the documentary You Weren't There: A History of Chicago Punk, 1977-1984 that is posted over at Bitchfork TV? Here's the trailer:

It really is fantastic, and you can watch the whole thing for free courtesy of P4KTV here: You Weren't There! It says it will only be available for one week, and I'm not sure how long it has been posted, so don't delay!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

My Little Girl Is Turning Two!

Oh man, it seems I'm always making excuses. Totally missed posting a comp in July, and my Pollardfest didn't pan out quite the way I wanted it to. Okay, so here's the deal: I'm putting Bob on the back burner, and I'm slotting disc two in the series for next June. The first one is still selling like hot cakes, and I don't want to slow the momentum by posting another.

As you've probably gathered from the headline, I'm shifting gears to celebrate Maria Justine's second birthday! It is sort of a cop out, but not really. I promised this about a year ago in this post: My Little Girl is Turning One!

That's right, we're having a guest-compilation this month from my good friend Laura. Just to reiterate, she sent us this comp shortly after MJ's birth, and we've listened to it dozens of times. A few quick thoughts:

There are no less than three songs on here that would make my all-time top 100. Those being, "American Girl" (a song that has lost none of its luster even though it is in constant rotation on Classic Rock Radio), "Girl U Want" (seriously, how many songs in the history of recorded music are better than this?), "The Girl Can't Help It" (LR's vocals on this continue to floor me every time I hear this). There were also three songs on here I had never heard. "Party Girl" (caused me to track down the one and only album by the Prissteens), "Girl's Attractive" (I was astonished to find out this was recorded in 2005, as it sounds like 1983 to me-- fantastic!), "Punk Girl" (I'm a fan of all things Billy Childish, but somehow managed to miss this little gem). Also, not sure if I had ever heard the Muff's version of Paul Collins' "Rock & Roll Girl" [see video above], but it is a fine rendition of another song which would crack my personal Hot 100. Thanks again LCP, and Happy Birthday MJ!

Happy Listening!

Oh, Girl: Welcome MJ!

01. The Replacements, “Birthday Girl”
02. Alex Chilton, “New Girl in School”
03. Tom Petty, “American Girl”
04. Hüsker Dü, “Girl Who Lives On Heaven Hill”
05. Iggy Pop, “Girs”
06. Alex Chilton, “Never Found a Girl”
07. The Prissteens, “Party Girl”
08. The Muffs, “Rock & Roll Girl”
09. Diamond Nights, “Girl’s Attractive”
10. Frank Zappa, “Valley Girl”
11. Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Mystery Girl”
12. Devo, “Girl U Want”
13. Heavenly, “P.U.N.K. Girl”
14. The White Stripes, “Fell In Love With a Girl”
15. Kings of Leon, “Taper Jean Girl”
16. The Knack, “Good Girls Don’t”
17. Dwight Twilley Band, “Girls”
18. The Beatles, “Girl”
19. Thee Headcoatees, “Punk Girl”
20. Little Richard, “The Girl Can’t Help It”
21. The Long Winters, “New Girl”
22. The Amps, “She’s a Girl”
23. Tom Petty, “Here Comes My Girl”

Total Time: 1:11:49

Download it here: Oh, Girl: Welcome MJ!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Classic GbV Lineup to Reunite!

Matador is having a three day Birthday Party in Vegas, and you're invited. And oh, by the way, the original Matador lineup of Guided by Voices will be playing. I think that means Robert Pollard, Tobin Sprout, Kevin Fennel, Greg Demos and Mitch Mitchell. Couldn't find a good pic with all five of them, but the one above has four of the five, plus Jim Greer instead of Demos.

Seriously, this is cool news. Sorry, my Robert Pollard month has been so quiet, but I've been ridiculously busy. Rest assured I've got more comps on the way-- we'll just have to extend it another month or two. On a positive note, a whole mess of you have downloaded the first disc. It has out done pretty much all of the non Power Pop comps-- including the Xmas comps but not including my top 25 of 2009. So hopefully, I've turned a few new people onto the legend of Pollard. In the meantime, enjoy this video from 1994 (again, I don't think it's Demos playing bass, not sure who it is):

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Check Out This Rather Lengthy Article on GBV!

At Pop Matters

Seriously, hope you have some popcorn. If you're not into reading than enjoy this classic Guided by Voices Video:

What I think is cool about the above video, is that it features a really young Nate Farley, before he was actually a member of the band.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

June Salutes You, Robert Pollard!

Okay, I apologize for not putting out a compilation in May. With the High School Tennis season in full gear, I just did not have time to put anything together. The good news is that I've decided to make June Robert Pollard month. Perhaps not as extensive as Power Pop Month, but I will be sharing several compilations with you over the next few weeks and all of my posts will be related to Mr. Pollard.

Just a couple of quick notes about the compilation. I've made dozens of Guided by Voices comps for people over the years. This is the first time I've ever put together a compilation of just Pollard tracks from throughout his career (well, pretty much). This primer assumes two things. Number one, you already own Bee Thousand. My second favorite album of all time BTW, and if you own it and don't think the world of it, then these primers are probably not going to change your mind. Second, it assumes you own The Best of Guided by Voices, as I have not duplicated any of the tracks here. Finally, for those of you with a pretty good grasp on the Robert Pollard discography, there will still probably be something on these comps which will interest you, so read through the tracklistings and see for yourself if they're worth your time. Speaking of time, I won't waste any more of your's today. On to the first in a series of three Robert Pollard compilations.

Happy Listening!

Your Trail is Quite a Puzzle: A Robert Pollard Primer – Disc 1:

01. “Over the Neptune/Mesh Gear Fox” by Guided by Voices from Propeller (1992). Starting with the canned “G-B-V” chant and Pollard’s sarcastic statement: “This song does not Rock”, OtN/MGF is probably my favorite Guided by Voices album opener.

02. “Carnival at the Morning Star School” by Guided by Voices from 30 Songs (Ca. 1992). A fantastic song that was on the fan assembled bootleg, 30 Songs, but didn’t actually get an official release until 2009, when it made it’s appearance on Suitcase 3.

03. “Do Something Real” by Robert Pollard from Speak Kindly of Your Volunteer Fire Department (1999). Released a few months after Guided by Voices’ first major label album, Do the Collapse, Speak Kindly, which was not marred by Ric Ocasek’s production, is far superior to the TVT long player.

04. “Dayton, Ohio – 19 Something and 5” by Guided by Voices from Tonics and Twisted Chasers (1997). T&TC was originally a vinyl-only, fanclub release. It has since been released on CD, and I think it is still available. It’s just Tobin and Bob, and I believe that it’s the most under-rated release in the GbV discography.

05. “Liar’s Tale” by Guided by Voices from Self-Inflicted Aerial Nostalgia (1989). This to me is one of the shining examples of Pollard’s brilliance. Not much going on, but good god what a song! It’s a shame that it was not included in the GbV Best-of compilation. This is a top five Pollard track for me.

06. “Jar of Cardinals” by Guided by Voices from Vampire on Titus (1993). It took me awhile to fall in love with the album VoT. I fell in love with this nugget instantaneously.

07. “Lonely Town” by Sucko from Suitcase 2 [Disc 7] (ca. 1987). Again, just a simple little tune that did not make it’s way onto a proper album. It did manage to make the second box set of unreleased stuff from the Pollard vaults.

08. “Blimps Go 90” by Guided by Voices from Alien Lanes (1995). AL is my third favorite GbV long player. It might have the best batch of songs of any of the albums. This is one of many shining moments on the disc.

09. “I Am Decided” by Timid Virus from Suitcase 2 [Disc 6] (ca. 1996). A song given to Kim Deal, who recorded a version of it with the Amps.

10. “Get Under It” by Robert Pollard from Not In My Airforce (1996). From RP’s debut solo album. Still my favorite Pollard solo album, by the way.

11. “People Are Leaving” by Robert Pollard from Waved Out (1998). A hauntingly beautiful song, from Pollard’s second solo album on Matador Records.

12. “Not Behind the Fighter Jet” by Guided by Voices from Mag Earwhig! (1997). ME! Often gets a bad rap. The beginning of the brief Guided by Verde period. A true transition album, it’s the first GbV record that sounds better as you turn up the volume.

13. “The Ascended Master’s Groshop” by Guided by Voices from Hardcore UFOs: Demons and Painkillers (1997). A B-Side to the great Doug Gillard live staple, “I Am a Tree”. This one is co-written by Tobin Sprout and I’ll bet my life that’s his lovely piano part.

14. “Scissors and the Clay Ox (In)” by Too Proud To Practice from Suitcase [Disc 3] (ca. 1990). According the GBVDB, this is from an aborted album from 1990 titled Back To Saturn X. With all the Robert Pollard product that is available, it boggles the mind how many projects were actually scrapped.

15. “Zoom” by Robert Pollard from Zoom EP (2005). The newest song featured on this compilation. I’ll be honest, I’m not big on very much Pollard music post-2001, but this is Bob at his poppiest.

16. “United” by Ben Zing from Suitcase [Disc 4] (1988). Again this is the kind of throwaway that Pollard-freaks like me can’t get enough of. Pretty sing-along chorus—it makes me weep.

17. “Time Machines” by Lexo & the Leapers from Ask Them EP (1999). An oft neglected release in the ridiculously vast Pollard discography. Pound for pound, it might be the best EP he has released.

18. “Coastal Town” from Suitcase 3 [Disc 9] (ca. 198?). An early, and much slower version of what would become “Closer You Are” from Alien Lanes. Melancholy Bob at his finest.

19. “Sister I Need Wine” by Guided by Voices from Isolation Drills (2001). Though I don’t love ID as much as I did upon its release, it still holds up pretty well. There are a number of gems on it, and I never tire of this one.

20. “A Crick Uphill” by Guided by Voices from Hold On Hope EP (2000). The HoH EP that came out a few months after GbV’s major label debut, Do the Collapse, is a much stronger affair than that album.

21. “The Winter Cows” by Guided by Voices from Sunfish Holy Breakfast EP (1996). I remember being slightly embarrassed buying this record when it came out. I was a little worried too, had Pollard gone hippie? One spin on the turntable, and I knew all was well.

22. “She Wants to Know” by Guided by Voices from Forever Since Breakfast EP (1986). Early GbV owes a lot to the jangly, guitar pop of early R.E.M. This is a great example of that.

23. “Underwater Explosions” by Guided by Voices from Under the Bushes, Under the Stars (1996). The last three songs on this comp are all from the same recording sessions. This one actually made it on a proper album.

24. “Bunco Men” by Elf God from Suitcase [Disc 1] (ca. 1996). This one, however, did not. I can still remember this song coming on the first time I heard Suitcase, and just being stunned. I later found out it was recorded for UtBUtS, but did not make the cut!!

25. “Bright Paper Werewolves” by Guided by Voices from Under the Bushes, Under the Stars (1996). Understated Pollard at his very best. It’s criminal that songs this good don’t get any attention, save from uber-fanboys like me.

Total Time: 58:35

Download it here: Your Trail is Quite a Puzzle: A Robert Pollard Primer – Disc 1

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Forty Years Since Kent State.

Sad day in American History. Read the thoughts of one of the victims mother here: I Lost My Son 40 Years Ago at Kent State.