Monday, June 30, 2008

great fangirls in history

Remember the '80's? Yeah, me neither. Anyway, once upon a time, Stephen Pastel of Scotland's the Pastels was all like, "please don't think of us as an 'indie band' as it was never meant to be a genre, and anyway we are far too outward looking for that sad tag." He pretty much only said this because he was kind of a cutie and he was just trying to be modest and unassuming or not an asshole or some shit like that. Don't believe me? Try and look past his haircut to see that sweet smile of his in this video from 1987, "Coming Through".

But don't take my word for it. Check out this delightful little number written in his honor, "Throw Aggi Off the Bridge" from Black Tambourine, ladled into your bowl from the primordial soup of the early nineties.

As you may have guessed by now, "Aggi" was Stephen Pastel's ladyfriend and bassist (smart movie Aggi. When you land a hot piece like that, make sure you're in his band no matter what) and singer Pam Berry of Black Tambourine was not pleased. Black Tambourine, despite recording a mere ten songs influenced a generation of American indie rockers, or at least that's what their wikipedia says. To my knowledge, they are important enough for the Aislers Set to reference them and that's good enough for me. I discovered them in 2004 and they gave me all the encouragement I didn't need to become the homewrecking hussy you know and love today.

If you want some extra credit, you can listen to my favoritest Black Tambourine song, "Black Car" here on the Slumberland Records website. Yeah, there's a lot of history today, but come on. It's Monday. COME ON.

Tuff Jelly Ghost Bones

The Unicorns were a Canadian band that got pissed at each other after a couple of rough tours and broke up. Dudes went on to be in other bands that I don't like as much, like Islands and Th' Corn Gangg. The latter was a foray into hip-hop, YIKES.

The Unicorns were a little dark, kinda funky and rocked an analog synth like it was going out of style. Well, I guess it kind of did? Shit.

I pretty much blew my entire load with that last post, so I'm just going to cut to the videos now. Just remember, you only need two minutes 'cause I'm so intense. Two minutes in heaven is better than one minute in heaven.


Tuff Ghost:

nothing clever today,


Sunday, June 29, 2008

chinese new wave...

need i say more?


p.s. - you guys should come up to visit me soon!

Saturday, June 28, 2008


Yeah, I just made a Home Movies joke. Whatever. Go look it up, episode 308-Guitarmageddon.

Anyways, there is this band I have seriously been losing my shit over for a couple weeks now. They have described themselves as "post-apocalyptic Vaudevillian punk" and I agree. I would also throw in post-prog-math WHATEVER, mostly because there are no adequate adjectives for this band.

Genres aside, 31Knots will make you want to rip your skin off and flail about in a bath of your own blood. The songs are beautifully constructed and they are nothing short of enthralling live. As I previously mentioned, we stumbled upon this precious northwestern commodity (way more valuable than buffalo meat on the Oregon trail!) at UCSD's Che Forest Sewage Collective. We showed up late (thanks for being full of traffic, I-5...) to see Joan of Arc and I was sold the moment I heard 31Knots' front man, Joe Haege (donning a crappy Satan mask), howl "hey you," from the first non-sampled line of "Sanctify" (from their 2007 Polyvinyl release "The Days and Nights of Everything Anywhere"). Haege, sans Satan mask, swiftly snaked his way into the middle of the crowd in his Pee-Wee Hermanized Southern preacher-man suit, mic in hand and commanded the attention of the entire room. All eight of us. No, I think there were more people. Maybe 14. Regardless, I would really love to see these dudes shred it at the Casbah and I'm not just saying that because the Casbah has Arrogant Bastard. MAKE IT HAPPEN, SAN DIEGO!

This here youtube video is a live recording from some show I wasn't at that for the most part maintains the audio integrity of "Sanctify:"

31Knots really uses technology to their advantage- samples are obviously present yet their presence does not take away from their live performance. Recording-wise, the samples add a pleasing, quirky yet serious depth. They also use good old-fashioned musicianship to their advantage, bassist/sweater connoisseur Jay Winebrenner and drummer/engineer Jay Pellicci throw down their share, contributing both to the balance of the live show and powerfully supporting the chaos that lies in the recordings. Lyrically, Haege brings a delightful amount of snark with the storytelling, which is undeniably a breath of fresh air from the sad-bastard crap the kids are into these days.

I managed to procure the "Polemics" EP as well as "The Days and Nights of Everything Anywhere" at my local record store (I'm not saying which one, I don't need any of you night prowlers coming up to me asking me for autographs) and am very pleased with both acquisitions. "Polemics" is aesthetically pleasing despite the fact that it won't play in my car (life is rough, obviously) and is an overall good album. "The Days and Nights of Everything Anywhere" is definitely the mind-blower for me and "Compass Commands" from the upcoming Aug. 19 Polyvinyl release "Worried Well" is more than promising.

"Hit List Shakes (The Inconvenience Of You)" is another standout track (you know, aside from "Sanctify") on "The Days and Nights of Everything Anywhere"- though lacking a traditional discernible "breakdown," I feel like the song picks itself up at around 3:48 to serve you your own pretentious ass on a tarnished silver platter. The volume definitely needs to be up to 11 for the last half of this song. Which reminds me, does anyone want to hire a now 3/4ths deaf audio engineer? HAH just kidding! This is officially the second post I have made a joke in! I digress. Going all the way back to the beginning of the album, one will find "Beauty." No, seriously, that's the name of the song. it's a good'un. Here's the video:

existentially yours,


Friday, June 27, 2008

You gotta love livin', baby, 'cause dyin' is a pain in the ass

Last night I saw Frank Sinatra, Jr. with the San Diego Symphony at the Moonlight Ampitheatre. It was some sort of fund raising shenanigan that I admittedly paid very little attention to but the Guido in me snatched up my free tickets right quick in hopes of getting a small taste of history. I was pleased to find out the orchestra received the original Nelson Riddle orchestrations under lock and key and were instructed to return them immediately after the concert series ended.

Sinatra, Jr.'s career rides not only on sounding like his father, but BEING his father and there's a reason Jr. has a career. There were moments in which I could close my eyes and let his (father's) classically sultry voice envelop me and transport me to a smoky night club that was filled with slightly-cocked fedoras clutching gin and tonics when they were not rock-stepping around crimson-lipped perfect coifs.

So here are a couple of my favorite Frank, Sr. clips I scrounged up on the internet.

With Gene Kelly in one of my favorite talkies "Anchors Aweigh."

With Grace Kelly in "High Society." Go ahead and ruffle my finger-waves, Frank. OH WE ARE SUCH FOOLS! Seriously, why can't every dude I know take a lesson from Frank? Romance is NOT superman-ing a ho.

And of course, "Come Fly With Me."

off to use my feminine wiles,


like a teenager in town

Confession time: I know Wolf Parade's new album came out like last week or the week before or something (I am losing track of time because I am mostly unemployed) but back in May I heard that a certain Paul Peterson had gotten a hold of it early. Once I knew that somebody else had it, and that somebody else was Paul Peterson, I could not rest until I had illegally downloaded it early (I pre-ordered a hard copy too, okay, GET OFF MY BACK). So I've had extra time to think about At Mount Zoomer and yet the most intelligent thing I can say about it has to do with my favorite song, "California Dreamer". Behold, Wolf Parade live:

Please note the Krug's Brett Michaels-esque bandana and at 2:22 I believe his Krugly knee is revealed. He appears to be wearing shants (not shorts not pants). Fetch me my smelling salts!

I'm really digging how the instruments in this song sound like the Doors and then suddenly instead of Jim Morrison's low, booming voice you get Spencer Krug's je ne sais quoi. Incongruous yet apt, I say, and a testament to his stature as a songwriter and performer that the comparison doesn't fall flat or make him look like an ass. It stands, both ironic and true as well as really fun to listen to at top volume in the car with the windows down, yesssss. This song is the reason I can't sit and listen to that album all the way through because it keeps ending up on repeat. True story.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

lady problems: Electrelane

The other day I was over at my dad's house, helping him search on the myspace for local artists who might want to let him use their music on the cheaps in his documentary on hang-gliding. He got really worked up about this lady, Laurie Morvan, particularly her song "Girls With Guitars". By "worked up", I mean he made me listen to it like 100 times and displayed some of his best old white guy in an office chair dance moves. I must admit, she is an excellent guitarist, but I think my dad was trying to get at something else with his song selection, namely, "where are the girls with guitars?"

Firstly, he was saying, hey betch, I got you a Danelectro when you were fourteen so why on Earth are you not a rockstar yet? Secondly, female artists blah blah rock blah under-represented in the blah blah mainstream media blah blah blah, and it reminded me of an issue I often forget because I grew up idolizing Sleater-Kinney and because I don't really listen to the radio much anyway (except for the Swami).

I have been slapped in the face with this issue too. Inevitably, when my old (all girl) band performed, some dude would say some boneheaded thing in earnest, like "Whoa, you chicks rock, like even though you're chicks. Weird." And I was always so surprised. In my head, asking a question like, "where are the girls with guitars?" is like asking, "when will women get to vote?" It already happened, y'all. It's happening now. If you can't see it, you're not looking. It's not just girl bands, and we're not all just singers. If I make music, my ladybits have nothing to do with it, unless I finally get around to that concept album written from my catbag's perspective (tentatively titled "Lady Vadge Sings the Blues") or start using my bosoms to play the drums.

So, yeah, I feel like I DO need that much introduction for my new whenever I feel like it feature "lady problems" because I think it is kind of weird to be like, "It's not a big deal that I'm a girl but let's make a big deal about these other girls being girls" without first acknowledging that some things need to be addressed until nobody feels like they need to ask about them anymore and this "women in music thing" is one of them. Apparently.

Without further ado, I present to you Electrelane, a band from the UK who are pretty fucking awesome for being lesbians (according to some really enlightened youtube commenters, I don't really know anything about their sexual orientation)

This song "To the East" is off their awesome 2007 release No Shouts No Calls. They are currently on "indefinite hiatus" but they have plenty of old material to keep you satisfied. I recommend 2004's The Power Out for more vaguely poppy gems and 2001's Rock it to the Moon for heavy keyboard jams, like "Film Music":


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I'll scratch MY accidents into YOUR wall...

I've been meaning to get seriously down and dish about this band I am freaking out about right now, 31Knots. Megan and I discovered these fine western gems when they opened for Joan of Arc.

Unfortunately, I have been really busy. When I say busy I mean I just play a lot of rock band and drink too much. I spent the entire day ralphing and let me tell you, yakking blue gatorade in a bush in front of a hospital is kind of satisfying because people think you have west nile or some shit but it is actually just Captain Morgan punching you in the gut for being such an idiot the night before.

So instead I am leaving you with this video from a million years ago (I'm suprised it's in color) of Jawbreaker performing "Accident Prone." The only real video they made (Fireman) surfaces on the Universal Music Group youtube page so naturally, embedding is disabled. Because you can beat the internet? Anyways, Jawbreaker is kind of an awesome blast from the past for me (being 17 and angsty is rough) and I still feel like "Dear You" is one of the most underrated albums in the history of time.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

all in a ball

At first blush the title of the Thao with the Get Down Stay Down album We Brave Bee Stings and All might strike you as ironic and clever or impossibly twee, but, like, have you ever SEEN the movie My Girl? I cried like a bitch in that movie. I cried like a bitch for twenty minutes after the credits ended. FYI: I happen to be a really tough broad. I don't even cry when I lose at scrabble, if only because that never happens.

The point is, bee stings are serious business and so is Thao Nguyen. When she sings the words, "I have seen fear and convenience, I have never glimpsed romance" or when she repeats the refrain from the same song (fear and convenience) "did he hurt you in a new way?" the sweetness of her delivery belies the sadness/wistfulness that lingers even in more ostensibly upbeat numbers and mingles with wry humor in songs such as "Bag of Hammers" and "Swimming Pools". Speaking of "Swimming Pools":

See what I mean?

The album closes with a sweet cover of Smokey Robinson's "You've Really Got a Hold On Me". Homegirl has a sexy voice and she's not afraid to use it. And when that song ends and you release your kitty from your deathgrip slowdance of eternal love (when I say "you" I'm talking about "me"), the cd will turn around and reward you with another listen to "Beat (Health, Life and Fire)", another stand out track.

To sum up: sweet indie pop, slight country influence but nothing annoying, lyrics that are both witty and heartfelt, a refreshing summer treat "like a lick of ice cream".

a (really hard) trip down memory lane

Once upon a time (roughly seven years ago) I received a sampler CD from Deep Elm Records, with my order of Appleseed Cast/Cross My Heart/other faggy bullshit albums and t-shirts featuring sad guys in glasses clearly yelling about self-loathing, that happened to feature a two minute and 14 second face-melter called "Leaning the Room" by a band known as "Planes Mistaken for Stars." Deep Elm is currently peddling this fine compilation for an exorbitant amount of cash moneys (like $10), HOWEVER, the "Knife In the Marathon" EP is totes worth it on iTunes.

Recently, I have been going through this thing where I have no life standards and openly still really love post-punk/post-rock (don't even get me started on math rock, bish plz) so here is a video from PMFS called "Spring Divorce" from their 2004 No Idea release "Up In Them Guts." Hee-hee, guts.

fucking shred,


Monday, June 23, 2008

if virgins are still chaste

I don't know if you've heard of the black cab sessions, so I thought I would just take this opportunity to inform you that they're pretty sweet. Simple idea: a band gets in a cab and plays a song. The videos are a little washed out and wobbly but they have an intimate vibe and beautiful music and that makes it all better. The latest video was Fleet Foxes, and Spoon and Scout Niblett have videos up too. There are a few groups on there that I'm less jazzed about coughdeathcabforcutiecough, but nothing will make me less than ecstatic about the Sunset Rubdown video in which they perform the new song "You Go On Ahead".

My feelings for Spencer Krug are drifting gently into scary-fangirl-knitting-you-a-pair-of-mittens territory so I will keep my remarks brief.

I love it.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

I'm a wolf

Last night 'Stina and I attempted to see Sea Wolf at the Casbah. They fucked up man. They got big enough to sell out the Casbah. Just kidding, we're not that snobby. Well, not all the time. So how about a video followed by a hypothetical concert review? Sounds good to me too.

I'm guessing their show is a lot like this but with more of us struggling to see past the tall people who always insist on standing in the front and never ever offer us piggyback rides. I'm guessing that they are foxier in person and we would have been pretty excited about that because objectifying dudes is fun.

We would have gotten really excited about the jealous girlfriends because we're going through a phase where we get really excited about synthesizers and whispery femme vocals and Stina would find some cool technical shit to say. I'm really digging on their song "Roboxulla" right about now.

Patrick Park also played, you can sample them here at their myspace. Pretty similar to Sea Wolf. "Here We Are" stands out to me because I like finger picking. That's what she said.

I was on DD (designated driver, not boob) duty, and let's face it, I was in a shitty mood yesterday, so I probably would have bitched a lot about my feet hurting and made snarky comments. I'm guessing one of us would have had an unpleasant run-in with an acquaintance or worse.

And all of these things would have been preferable to what actually happened: we drove back to north county, rescued our friend Devin from the cougar den and I got in a total bitch fight because some peroxide blonde chick jostled me and spilled my cocktail all over my arm and then talked shit on me to her boyfriend like seriously, one foot away from me. Then I spent the rest of the night being a sad sack, my only saving grace being the snap decision that I was not in fact drunk enough to text. Bad times.

Friday, June 20, 2008

dammit girl.

hello, pony girls and boys... beatrix here... i'm here to contribute to the video of the week thing 'stina and megan have going on... mine is by MGMT and it's called "electric feel"... this song has been my JAM for like... 6 months now... I'll actually drive for a good half hour in my car with this song on repeat... it has all the appeal of prince's "i want to be your lover", but they look like the Lost Boys in Hook and apparently they stole the bears from that weird thing at disneyland... enjoy!

check out the video here


p.s. - my wikipedia search of "Lost Boys" also showed me a graphic novel called "Lost Girls" which is a sexually explicit book about alice in wonderland, wendy from peter pan and dorothy from oz who all meet up as adults in 1913 to talk about their sexual escapades as children... Why do i secretly want to read this book?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Hey you know what is really difficult?

Typing with a charred left index finger. Never try to manhandle a flat iron. Intentionally or otherwise.

With that out of the way, I am Christina. Or sometimes 'stina. It depends on how lazy I am feeling. One time, many moons ago, I took journalism 101 and somehow years later found myself in the editor in chief chair at a dumpy seaside community college. I'm a music major and kind of a jerk. I like dark, bitter beers and doing bad Morrissey impressions during the drive to ballet class. I am offensive, lewd and for the most part pretty mirthless. OH just kidding (about that mirthless part)! I love jokes.

Speaking of other stuff I love, my video of the week is Thee More Shallows' "Fly Paper."

In case you are incorrigibly stupid their name above is a link to their myspace. Two of my favorite songs on their 'space include "Night at the Knight School" and "The Dutch Fist."

These dudes hail from 'frisco and I think they should get way more attention than they do. If they don't want more attention I think someone should at least send them one of those Edible Arrangement things. You know, these:

They manage to pull off some pretty amazing things live, whilst maintaining the integrity of their songs AND Their albums are also free of any RIAA affiliation! Even better reason to buy them!

Maybe next week I will try to find a video with really foxy dudes in it or something. Mostly I will be trying not to post Peter Gabriel videos.


p.s. Megan only thinks the Che smells like ass 'cause she was the one ripping it.

p.p.s. Seriously though, could you guys please shower?


'sup y'all. My video of the day is the Brunettes "B-A-B-Y" because if we were at a slumber party I would most definitely shake my pom-poms at you and give you a basket full of puppies.

Anyway, my name is Megan Elizabeth and I think I'm an authority on music because I know how to work a record player, a tape deck, a cd player, an ipod, a guitar and a couple of drums. And because I figured out how to set up a blog. Bloggers are always right.

So yeah, I'm pretty much an expert and you should take everything I say to heart. Plus I was in a band for a while. We played at several house parties that weren't even all at my house in addition to a gig at the Che Cafe. For those of you who don't know, the Che Cafe is a very prestigious vegan venue on the UCSD campus that always smells like 8 kinds of B.O. and 6 kinds of ass but generally has some great music going on and I was super stoked to play there.

I haven't been involved in any musical projects for the last couple of years because I've been pretty busy being a comp lit geek and lurking in your libraries. Not that I don't still spend an uncontrollable amount of time and money on music... I definitely do. I want to make The Pony Girl Club a place where I can share what I find.