OK, so last Tuesday Christopher Reimer from the band Women and a whole host of other bands (see post below) died in his sleep. Usually when musicians die, the reaction ranges from over-exaggerated eulogising to tasteless humour, and I have been a part of both those camps myself. However, when someone you truly admired and respected dies you get that feeling of genuine remorse and sadness for a dude you never even met, you just listened to his music and yet the feeling is still there, thats how much of an affect Women’s music and Chris’ other work had on me. Usually we hit you up with all manner of free downloads and underground links, this time I’m posting up only opportunities for paid purchase of material. Paradoxically, the only time a guy catches a break from his intellectual property rights being raped and pillaged is when he is no longer around to benefit from it. If you can, seriously buy Public Strain, it was one of the best albums of the last two years and remains one of the best records I have ever heard.
Christopher Reimer, guitarist and drone-backbone of band Women, died in his sleep a few days ago. Shit like this fucks you up, such a loss. There’s not much to say that other blogs/sites haven’t already. To give a nod to the man, I’m putting up 8 and half minutes of relatively hard to get Women tracks from their golden “Public Strain” era. It can barely be called an era, as it was so short lived, but it can hopefully be looked back on as some of the best music the noughties had to offer.
Described as “sunny Beach Boys pop […] dragged into a dark alley and gleefully mutilated” this is three tracks from a Faux Discx comp EP and the Service Animal 7″, released with the first few vinyl releases of Public Strain. It’s my own little ode to the band, and the man. It maybe easy to tag them with the “too good to last” trope, but I genuinely do think it was true of them.
The band’s members have, or have had, their part in many other projects; backing Chad Vangaalen, Friendo, Fels-Naptha, Azeda Booth, the folk band the Dodos (a favourite of their other involvements) and Porcelain Shaft. The latter are being critically acclaimed and are a real interesting listen.
Any problems with this post and it’ll be taken down immediately. If there was ever a time to respect an artist’s work, it is now.
The Feelies seem to be one of those band band’s. An important influence on many artists who have gone on to achieve much more recognition than the bands who influenced them… REM, I’m looking at you, oh and hello cover of Weezers ‘Blue Album’ fifteen years before its release. Their sound of sweet minimalistic guitars with polyrhythms was never going to turn them into U2 but they are a band that deserve appreciation, not as progenitors of bigger bands but of what they created themselves. ‘Crazy Rhythms’ as a debut album is much more than just any other New Wave album coming out in the early 80s, it reeks of intelligence, a knowledge of music and of craft in general. From the Aldous Huxley reference in the name, the cover of The Beatles ‘Everybody’s Got Something to Hide…’ (I mean it isn’t exactly ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’), to the ability to layer rhythm guitar on top of rhythm guitar in a much more understated wall of sound, the album always has something new to dig your ear into. Have a listen to ‘Raised Eyebrows’ below and try not to see it as a perfect time capsule for so many eras of music: Post-Punk, Surf-Rock, Power-Pop. It’s like crack and the drums, oh the drums.
Here’s the second album ‘The Good Earth’ produced by REM’s Peter Buck. I’ll give you three guesses for what this album sounds like. I recommend listening to the first album with your friends while drinking heavily, the second album the morning after with your friends commiserating about the events of the night before. The Good Earth
Here you will find Gang of Four. Leeds based, Jagged Guitars, politically motivated and funky as fuck (See tasty melodica action in picture), these guys were New Wave at its newest and waviest. Here you will find their ridiculously good debut Entertainment, their strong follow up Solid Gold and their very own compilation of songs during sessions between 77 and 81 for the Man himself, John Peel. Not much left to say except enjoy.
Deerhunters first album sounds like an aggressive, echo-heavy, rythmic assault that’s fueled by youth and general angst that the lads felt at that time. This is no means for the average Deerhunter fans who like the accessible harmonies of recent releases, oh no. It’s for a hardened, intrepid listener who enjoys an album that most wouldn’t dare tackle. With this all said it’s common knowledge that Cox doesn’t even like the album, but maybe he’s just playing the media to throw off the critics.
Always remember to lick before you bite:
A good album by the young new wave revivalists with a bit of kraut rock and Sonic Youth thrown in here and there.
DEVO are a band with a message, they are also a band with bitchin’ songs and make keytars seem like a legitimate instrument. They are both high concept and dumb humour at once. The concept behind the band is the theory of de-evolution, the idea that instead evolving man is now de-evolving and becoming total assholes. They did this in a satirical way dressing up in costumes and conducting some seriously weird interviews
I think “a musical laxative for a constipated society” is the probably the best way to describe these guys. In an age where a band with a concept comes from something like My fucking Chemical shite-mance DEVO are an example of how its done well with irony and contempt permeating everything they do. They recognise what came before them and how to interpret it into a modern dystopic fantasy.
Anyone that could hear this in their head is a fucking idol.
1 album can’t do justice to DEVO so I’m giving you the bumper deal of their First album, which is for those of the punk persuasion
“forget everything you’ve heard about Television, forget punk, forget New York, forget CBGB’s … hell, forget rock and roll—this is the real item.”
Roy Trakin, SoHo weekly, 1977
Not my words but something close to what i would say about this band. This shit is in its own stratosphere. Television were a band from 1973- 78 and are unfairly overlooked every time the beginnings of punk and new wave are looked at, they fucking built the stage at CBGB’s! Not only were they reliable carpenters but they also shat out stuff like this.
If you have ever enjoyed punk, new wave, psychedelia or Interpol (they pretty much made a career out of Marquee Moon) then you need this album in your life.