Monday, December 29, 2008

Jay Debauchery's Top 10 Albums of 2008

There could have been a lot more shoegazer pop on this list (Magnetic Fields, Blood on the Wallz) as well as some discs I got in '07 that didn't come out til this year. I encourage you to at least LISTEN to all of these and maybe you'll find some new kind of kick. For everyone that said this was an off year in music I say, fuck off. There were a slew of great records that didn't make this list (it was so god damned hard not to put Gentlemen Jesse in this collection). And if you put Girl Talk in your list you need to slit your throat.
10. Wavves - S/T CS I just heard this band (actually one man named Nathan Williams) a few weeks ago and it seriously rocked my va-jay-jay. This dude probably kicked in his amp with a pair of steel toed boots before recording some of the most luscious California beach pop I've heard in a long time. The layers of noise washed over the hooks and melodies are absolutely essential to the beauty of the tunes. Plus, Mr. Williams has a righteous 80's era skater cut right out of Thrasher. And not in an ironic manner.
There is no YouTube video I can put here so just check out the tracks here.
9. The Night Marchers - See You in Magic John Reis can do no wrong. Except for breaking up the Hot Snakes and Sultans in the same year. And just after he put the only rock 'n' roll band EVER allowed to use horns (Rocket from the Crypt) to bed. He soothed my wounds with the Night Marchers which was a little more caustic ("I Wanna Deadbeat You", "Open Your Legs") than I was expecting. They kill live, also. It's not RFTC, but I'll take a John Reis band over 75% of music any day.
8. Lords of Altamont - The Altamont Sin So, they pick up the bassist from the MC5, sound more stoned than usual and take their sweet fucking time to deliver one hell of a record. I should punish them for that but how can I when they consistently kick out the jams this fierce? 1%er, fuzzed out, Farfisa drenched, down and dirty rock 'n' roll. I love everything Jake Calvaliere has ever been involved with but the Lords of Altamont easily take the cake. Sorry, Bomboras.
Lords of Altamont

7. Harlem - Free Drugs I despise 99% of bands from Austin for a multitude of reasons but these cats are brilliant. They pilfer from the Pixies, 13th Floor Elevators and Nuggets era garage rock for a truly excellent album that is impossible to resist putting on repeat. Just check out "South of France" and tell me you're not hooked. They got moved up on the list simply for titling a song "Psychedellic Titties."

6. MGMT - Oracular Spectacular The way I described it to a co-worker when it first got thrown into the rotation at work was what the Happy Mondays second album would've been if they binged on acid instead of crack. I stand by that. A great psychedellic electro-pop album that is in no way pretentious or hipster fodder. It's far to busy waving middle fingers to the subculture and stealing Madonna beats (seriously, "Electic Feel" owes its life to "Lucky Star") to be considering a brooding work of contemplative overload. These kids are just having a blast with infectious dance music.

5. The Raveonettes - Lust, Lust, Lust Take the shoegazer cannon of the Jesus and Mary Chain and My Bloody Valentine, strip out all of the distortion and swap out the Brian Wilson worship for Phil Spector girl groups and what you get is one of the more crucial European bands in recent memory. They just keep getting better.

4. The Baseball Project - Vol. 1: Frozen Ropes and Dying Quails Scratching your head at that title aren't ya? Well, you're not a baseball nerd then! I love baseball with all my heart, believe it to be a parable for life and this album more than evokes my passion for the game. It is literally dripping with unabashed love and devotion to America's passtime. Steve Wynn (the mastermind behind the criminally ignored Dream Syndicate) along with friends including Peter Buck (of R.E.M. fame) deliver a sixties style pop album that ranks this high simply for the song "Ted Fucking Williams." Here is the backstory for the song's title:
In the bullpen tonight Jim Pagliaroni was telling us how Ted Williams, when he was still playing, would psyche himself up for a game during batting practice, usually early practice before the fans or reporters got there.
He'd go into the cage, wave his bat at the pitcher and start screaming at the top of his voice, "My name is Ted fucking Williams and I'm the greatest hitter in baseball."
He'd swing and hit a line drive.
"Jesus H. Christ Himself couldn't get me out."
And he'd hit another.
Then he'd say, "Here comes Jim Bunning. Jim fucking Bunning and that little shit slider of his."
"He doesn't really think he's gonna get me out with that shit."
"I'm Ted fucking Williams."

3. Flogging Molly - Float This doesn't have the barroom rousers that Swagger and Drunken Lullabies had but Dave King's lamentations on returning to Ireland amidst peace for the first time in his life have served his songwriting greatly. Not that he needed any help. There are a few writers that liked their more raw, punk stylings and punish the band for scaling back for the sake of...well, better songwriting. Bollocks to them. This is by far their finest album to date. They have now earned the crown as the new Pogues.

2. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - Dig! Lazarus! Dig! I'm on record (in print!) as saying that I would gladly grab ankles for Nick Cave. The man is a genius and this year the Bad Seeds new offering was easily my most anticipated record. They did not fail me in the least. In fact, this is the best record they've released since Murder Ballads and is just as snarky, fun and insane. Come on, the title track is a hillarious diatribe reimagining Lazarus' alternate experience on Earth as a bored, pissed off, resentfull junkie. Dig comes so close to topping the noisy, Stooges inspired and absolutely filthy Grinderman offshoot Cave and Ellis released last year. That really says a ton about the strength of this record.

1. Fucked Up - The Chemistry of Common Life Holy shit, I cannot believe the evolution of this band. For their first LP release (which was a collection of EP's and singles) they sounded like the second coming of Black Flag. Then Hidden World dropped and was incredibly challenging as the band grew to compose 5 minute hardcore epics layered with experimental instrumentation and layers and layers of guitar tracks. I never thought I would be so in love with a band this raw that lovingly embraced Pro Tools, with up to 70 tracks of instruments at a time!!!! but here we are. On The Chemistry of Common Life, Pink Eyes and crew (which includes Rachel Lee Cook's little brother) continue their fuck you to religion ("So what's the point of ever being born again?") and deconstruction of the state of modern man. Yes, a band named Fucked Up is that deep, that intelligent and still able to make you want to go off. I cannot believe how they have crossed over from hardcore heroes to indie snob delights. I understand it but it stills bugs me out. Shit, the mainstream music rags are fellating them at every chance and you know what...they deserve every bit of acclaim and praise they recieve. Fucked Up will go down as the greatest punk rock band of their generation. Mark my words.
Honorable Mentions: Henry Fiat's Open Sore - Mondo Blotto, Blood on the Wallz - Liferz, Okmoniks, Magnetic Fields - Distortion, Yuppie Pricks - Balls, Blacklisted - Heavier than Heaven, Lonlier than God, Gentlemen Jesse
Clockcleaner. Babylon Rules is fucking phenomenal and they are the best thing out of Philadelphia right now. Totaly caustic and uncaring sounds of the Birthday Party meeting Big Black for drunken brawl.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Max Cargo Confirms the Cumshots Status as "Kings of Boner Rock"

Maybe it's the holidays, maybe it's the fact that I'm spending the holidays in retail hell with the dregs of humanity or maybe it's just that time in my lunar cycle that I've been jamming the Cumshots a lot lately. While I'm at work, I get "Praying for Cancer" stuck in my head pretty often. Well, the first line at least. I'm not that narcissistic to claim the whole song as a mantra.
Anyhoo, frontman Max Cargo (also named "Norway's Sexiest Man" by Elle a few years back) has unleashed a new debauched diatribe about his testicles on the Cumshots website. And, while I might not agree with him about ladies and my child bearers, it's still a pretty epic and prolific statement on the purity and importance of repsecting the sperm factories.* Here's a snippet:
This first, and probably most important, lesson is for all you girls out there. During sex (god forbid), don't grab my balls. Got that ? Stay the fuck away from my balls. I can't emphasise this enough. Before even licking my balls you need to have earned the respect of the balls. This takes time. Serious time. Probably months of intense fucking, and even then you have to ask the owner (me) to ask the balls if it's ok. The balls will then talk to my penis who'll surly deny the request, but at least it's now in the system, and in a few months you MAY be allowed a short visit to planet scrotum.
Truly, breathtaking and so poetic. With all of the shit this band talks it's actually kind of funny to see that their singer has such exclusive standards for fucking.

As Xmasy as We're Gonna Get

If you aren't familiar with the Yobs Christmas album you need to correct that shit pronto. The Yobs were the very filthy, very nasty and very awesome offshoot of the excellent British power-pop group the Boys ("First Time"). I tried to find a video for their rendition of "O Come All Ye Faithfull" which involves the heartwarming holiday tradition of tossing loads onto your gal's face but struck out. This will do just fine.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Veto! Motherfucking VETO!

I'll save you my usual bitching about bands from the 60's and 70's who haven't done fuck all aside from a swing of reunion tours deciding the time is right to pick up where the sonically left off and hit the studio. The New York Dolls and Stooges are the best (worst?) examples of what can transpire if you consider yourselves as anything more than a nostalgia act and try to recapture the insanity and nihilism of your youth.
Add one more group to the list who DIDN'T GET THE FUCKING MEMO! From
The legendary Sex Pistols are again hinting at a new studio album. Bassist Glen Matlock spoke to The Quietus about a 2009 album: The Sex Pistols? We've done our bit this year…we'll meet again in the new year and see what we want to do. We were not recording a new album - I think that journalists are making it up, but you can never say never. We all got ideas between us. It's a double-edged sword if you do it not good as the original, and if you don't do it people want to know why - but it's up to us. We are the masters of our own destiny.
I think we can all agree that this is a fucking horrible idea. Like, maybe worse than, say Facebook: The Movie!. Or being raped in the face. Yeah, I would prefer that than the Sex Pistols recording anything ever again. Oh, and Glen, you don't control SHIT in that band. Remember, you were the only one who could play until McClaren and Rotten decided to chuck your ass for walking calamity that was Sid Vicious. We all know Mr. Lydon is the puppet master now since you can't pull a Velvet Revolver and have people care. But, seriously, stay the fuck away from music. Thanks, humanity.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Maybe THIS President will Listen to Jello

Like most of the country, I too really dig Obama and the whole notion that radical change is still a viable possibility in this country. Especially after Colonel Clusterfuck's eight years of idiocy and criminality (and if you haven't been terrified enough about Cheney and Co.'s antics, pick up Jane Mayer's The Dark Side. It really gives you a frighteningly clear picture of the incompetence and corruption of the W. era) with the air of brutal doom lingering across America as we are seemingly about to sink into the abyss.
With things remaining stagnant in the worst way possible and with Col. still having another month to make one last, epic, fuck up, we ALL have a lot riding on Obama's success in the Oval Office. He also carries a great amount of expectations to follow through on the actualization of the change he eagerly promoted.
To keep him on point, Jello Biafra has written an open letter to the President Elect and it's pretty rockin'. Here's a quick excerpt:
National security means: • Everyone has a home. • Everyone has enough decent food to eat. • Everyone can drink the water without having to buy it in a bottle from Coke or Pepsi. • No one has to worry about getting their hand cut off at work or having their job outsourced overseas. • Everyone can be who they are without fear of being detained and tortured without trial. • Everyone can vote without fear, knowing their vote will be counted—accurately. • Every woman has the right to choose what to do with her own body. • Everyone has enough money for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. • Everyone, even if they don't have money, has the right to see a doctor if they're sick or hurt. In so many other countries this is a guaranteed human right by law.
Unlike a lot of other notable figures, (i.e. just about every fucking celebrity who campaigned for Obama and douche's like Fall Out Boy) Jello Biafra really knows his shit. A quick listen to your old Dead Kennedy's records and his spoken word performances will confirm this. And, like Jello, I really hope Obama takes this idea to heart: "Above all, be a leader, not a dealmaker. There are times when cutting a deal is the same as cutting and running. To put it mildly, we can't afford that anymore. There are no sails left to trim.