Fabulosos Calavera (1997) by Los Fabulosos Cadillacs

Categories: 1997 and Music.

In 1997, I fell in love with Grosse Pointe Blank, the only romantic comedy that was violent enough for my 15 year old soul to feel okay about liking. I liked it so much I went out and bought the soundtrack. (Well, the first soundtrack as there’s a Volume 2 I never purchased.) It was the one of the few contemporary albums I owned at the time (everything else was Beatles). On that CD was a song called “Matador” by this band. Read More

Odyshape (1981) by The Raincoats

Categories: 1981 and Music.

I loved the debut, a seemingly perfect combination of naive rock and punk energy. But this is another thing entirely – shockingly different. To call this music post punk is to admit that we don’t know what to call it. It’s not post punk in any sense, except that, once upon a time, maybe The Raincoats were a punk band, and they put this out later. The world music influence here is on the magnitude of Eno/Talking Heads, but the approach is so far from that you’d be forgiven for thinking that a crazy comparison. This is, for the most Read More

Laughing Stock (1991) by Talk Talk

Categories: 1991 and Music.

Though Hex is generally considered the official beginning of post rock, you could make a very strong argument that post rock begins with this record. Already very much hinting at it on Spirit of Eden, the music here is often even less recognizable as rock music, with entire songs seemingly barely existing as actual pieces, in a way that had little precedent in popular music prior to this band. The jazz influence is perhaps even more pronounced this time out, but though some or even all of these songs were initially recorded as if they were free jazz, the results Read More

After Bathing at Baxter’s (1967) by Jefferson Airplane

Categories: 1967 and Music.

It’s been ages since I’ve listened to the other Airplane records from the era but, from memory, this is their most overtly psychedelic and experimental record, with a “freak out” and some jams (and more than a little Hendrix worship). It’s the weakest of their classic records in my mind, and they don’t quite find a balance between wanting to write accessible, political songs and wanting to expand my musical consciousness. That being said, everyone was doing stuff like this, and this has dated better than some of the other albums from the era. 7/10 Read More

Blind Idiot God (1987)

Categories: 1987 and Music.

First: one of the best band names ever. This record gets off to a pounding start. Essentially it’s instrumental thrash, so it seems, and you’d have to think that this is an absolutely key step in the development of math rock. I mean, it’s not far from Don Caballero. But there’s more variety than you’d imagine. The tracks in the middle are considerably more traditionally “hard rock” than metal (and there’s that funk metal track thrown in for good measure) and then, out of the blue, comes the dub. What the fuck? Seriously. Certainly one of the most bonkers instrumental Read More

Grand Opening and Closing (2001) by Sleepytime Gorilla Museum

Categories: 2001 and Music.

SGM’s debut is an idiosyncratic mix of metal, ‘modern creative’, theatricality and some other disparate genres (prog for example). Part of the idiotically named ‘Rock Against Rock’ sub-genre – the standard-bearer? – SGM sound like a less chaotic, less Zappa-crazy Bungle at times, but don’t be mistaken by the oft made comparison. This is an entirely different beast – in part because they clearly like different weird things from Bungle. Perhaps their most distinguishing feature is their use of home made instruments and effects, which makes some tracks even less accessible. I must say I prefer their later stuff slightly, Read More