IAN DURY & THE BLOCKHEADS Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick. 1986 UK 4-track 12" vinyl single featuring a collection of special mixes by Paul Hardcastle, also including Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, Wake Up [And Make Love To Me] and Reasons To Be Cheerful. The glossy picture sleeve displays only light wear and despite a couple of light surface scuff, the vinyl remains in excellent condition.
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BUZZCOCKS Love Bites. 1978 UK first issue 11-track vinyl LP, including Ever Fallen In Love, Just Lust, Nostalgia & Sixteen Again, complete with illustrated credits insert & embossed picture sleeve. The sleeve, being mostly white, has some notable discolouration, and the vinyl remains excellent with only a few light signs of play.
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The Slobs “Down the Tubes” 1996. Centsless Productions. Snotty 90′s punk rock via Cincinnati and a pull from our “should it stay or should it go?” pile. It’s fitting I grabbed this today because tomorrow we are heading up to middle-of-nowhere Horicon, WI for Jersey St. Music Fest to see two Cincinnati bands who are most definitely NOT snotty 90′s punk rock: Suck the Honey and Lemon Sky. Anyway, Down the Tubes is the only full-length from The Slobs (there is a somewhat mysterious non-lable cassette and a couple of singles and EP’s). The band members did the cliched Ramones thing by taking their surnames from the band’s name: i.e. Pat Slob on guitar, John Slob on vocals, Chip Slob on drums and Andy Slob on bass, Andy also ran Centsless Productions who put out a few releases in the 90′s and some a bit more recently, the only notable one a Candy Snatchers 7″ from 1997. The music on Down the Tubes is pretty standard punk stuff, fast-n-loud, sneering, adolescent. The track “Goin’ Downtown” is about going downtown, seeing cops, etc., “Public Nuisance” about being an outcast, “Six Pack” is about beer (duh), “Tired of Fuckin’ You” is pretty self-explanatory…you get the idea. Not particularly clever, even when they are trying to be. On the album insert they have this “This is the spot where most bands put a thanks list. Since we are normally out of our minds and our memories regularly fail us, we have decided to not waste our barely precious time by laboring at such a mindless task. If you are one those [sic] people that get some kind of queer satisfaction out of appearing in such a list, you’re shit out of luck!” So poor copy editing as well as rude! This album is going to go.
THE CLASH London Calling. 1979 UK 19-track black & white CBS label double vinyl LP, with uncredited extra track ‘Train In Vain’, housed in Ray Lowry’s now legendary sleeve featuring an image of Paul Simonon smashing his Fender Precision Bass against the stage at The Palladium in New York City on 21st September 1979, shot by Pennie Smith [the design a homage to Elvis Presley’s debut], complete with lyric inners. The sleeve shows just a little light wear, whilst the vinyl shows only light signs of play.
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New track from S-E-R-V-I-C-E (JSBX’s Russell Simins on drums)
(via ▶ Cold Light [rough mix] by S-E-R-V-I-C-E [the band])
Oddball late-70s UK punk compilation on two 10” records, featuring acts like XTC, Eddie & the Hot Rods, Blondie, Greg Kihn, Ultravox and Johnny and the Self Abusers (who soon changed their name to Simple Minds).
Not sure I’m hearing any angry punk anymore. It’s first needledrop so I might need some time with it, but this album seems like the most straightforward of the catalog so far. The humor and dirt seems to have been blanched out, not sure how I feel about what’s left. Compared to the albums that preceded it, “Tim” sounds pretty formulaic. Hey, maybe it’s The Replacements who invented the formula to begin with, I’m new to them. This sounds very radio to my ears, the motor’s been pulled out. Maybe repeated listens will reveal strong songwriting and it may grow on me but so far, “Tim” leaves me kinda underwhelmed.
If I had to hazard a guess, I’d say “Bastards Of Young” was the single that Sire got behind. Catchy, a bit of edge but still kinda safe.
LISTEN: Bastards Of Young
Coffee, Smoke, Replacements. Yesterday, I began my inaugural spin of their entire catalog, discovering it for the first time. “Let It Be” represents the halfway mark of their album chronology and a turning point of sorts. The band seems far more settled in, on “Let It Be”. The raw punk rage of the first 2 records serves more as accent for these well written songs, rather than the fuel that drives the entire engine. Is it just me or do a lot of Replacements songs sound like they’re about to break out into a cover version of a popular song? Dunno, but the beginning of “Gary’s Got A Boner” starts off with a “Cat Scratch Fever” vibe, if only for a few seconds but still long enough to leave the impression. Unexpected surpise of the album: A cover of Kiss’ “Black Diamond”. Instant connection for those of us who grew up with it.
I loved the early punk stuff I played yesterday and feel kind of undecided about Hootenanny (for now), but I’m thinking that I appreciate the songwriting of “Let It Be” most of all. So far, at least. 4 more to go, haven’t heard any of those before either. Discovering a band’s entire catalog, decades after the critics have had their say and fans have debated which albums are “best”. Fresh ears, listening for the first time like it’s completely new, because it is (to you). This will never get old for me, ever.
The Replacements – Gary’s Got a Boner
They almost sound like a different band here; less raw with more structured songs. The country vibe on some tunes kinda reminds me of Jon Wayne “Texas Funeral” meets Chris Isaak. Paul Westerberg’s guitar solos sound like everything I like about rock n’ roll, the dirtier the better.
LISTEN: Replacements – Take me down to the hospital
Damn, this is so good. Aptly titled. Why have I always associated The Replacements with the grunge movement? Also, I was NOT expecting side 2 to start with heavy harmonica blowing. "White And Lazy" sound like it coulda been written by Five Horse Johnson…until the last 10 seconds.
White And Lazy