Thursday, November 25, 2010
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
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
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.
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