2021 Albums/EPs: Week 2 (January 8 – 14)

This week just gone (and yes, I’m already falling behind on these!) saw the first 2021 release I was actually looking forward to rather than just listening to out of a sense of routine and habit, but two others grabbed my attention as well. Let’s have a look at them!

Continue reading “2021 Albums/EPs: Week 2 (January 8 – 14)”

2021 Albums/EPs: Week 1 (January 1 – 7)

I’ve settled on weekly roundups of releases as the future direction of this blog. January often tends to be fairly slow for albums, and the first Friday of 2021 happened to fall on New Year’s Day. Who in their right mind releases anything then?

Continue reading “2021 Albums/EPs: Week 1 (January 1 – 7)”

Album #286: Butthole Surfers – Psychic… Powerless… Another Man’s Sac

  • Released: 1984 (1985 in UK)
  • Origin: San Antonio, Texas, USA
  • Label: Touch and Go/Fundamental
  • Best Track: Woly Boly

Anything completely weird like the Clown Core album I did earlier this week instantly makes me think of Butthole Surfers. They’re a band I’ve dipped in and out of rather than exhausting their catalogue, so let’s hear what their first album sounds like.

It sounds a lot like Butthole Surfers, is the answer. There’s more of a straight-up punk sound in parts, like on ‘Butthole Surfer’ and the brilliant ‘Woly Boly’, but it’s always laced with psychedelia, and often unsettling experimentation.

‘Lady Sniff’ sees Gibby Haynes add sounds like spitting, vomiting, belching and loud fart noises to the mix, while ‘Cherub’ wobbles and hovers, sounding like a dystopian but low-budget sci-fi film.

I like this a lot, with the conventional punk edge a welcome antidote to Haynes’ comfortingly standard strangeness.

Album #276: Drop Nineteens – National Coma

  • Released: 1993
  • Origin: Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  • Label: Caroline
  • Best Track: Royal

I mentioned when writing on Yo La Tengo’s latest that ‘Sugarcube’ by them is one of my favourite songs of all time. Another is ‘Winona‘ by Drop Nineteens.

I can’t explain my absolute adoration of this song. Perhaps it’s because, as some people in the YouTube comments allude to, it’s hard to imagine a more 1990s song. It came from the band’s 1992 debut Delaware – an album I would only rate as average-to-good despite that one sublime track.

The other day I discovered an article that caught up with the band. Before reading it, I’m not sure I was even aware that they put out a second album, National Coma, the following year, so I stuck it on.

If Delaware is average-to-good, then I’d have to say National Coma is closer to average. Even some of the band said in the aforementioned interview that they don’t listen to it often. It seems like they were trying to be a bit more arty and experimental, but the result is a bitty album. The production doesn’t do it any favours either – I can go with lo-fi, but it sounds rather thin, and quiet.

Still, they could write a tune, and some moments shine through. ‘Rot Winter’ is choppy and sloppy yet raw and abrasive, while ‘Skull’ is the catchiest track. It peaks on final track ‘Royal’ though, where a grungy, brooding verse is kicked into touch by an infectious chorus.

Create your website at WordPress.com
Get started