Sunday, March 5th, 2006
Sunday Cleaning – Volume 26
|Thunderegg / Open Book – The Collected Thunderegg, 1995-2004 (independent)
This is easily the most ambitious and overwhelming submission I’ve gotten in ever. It’s a 108-page booklet and data CD-ROM (not an audio disc) containing eight of Thunderegg’s albums plus bonus tracks – all told, over 530 minutes of music. It’s like a pocket-sized box set. The liner notes are filled to the brim with lyrics for every song and charming little illustrations and a helpful table of contents for the whole package. Since there’s no real practical way to listen to 232 tracks (besides actually listening to them all), I went with a random sampling approach and was really surprised how consistent and good everything I heard was – some tracks are short instrumental pieces and nothing is really epic length, but there were no throwaways or blatant filler. The Egg is absurdly prolific but not at the expense of quality control. There’s a definite lo-fi, 4-track cassette aesthetic going on and that, plus the songwriting style, elicits some rather obvious Guided By Voices and Neutral Milk comparisons, but there’s far worse points of comparison. Will Georgantas, he who essentiall is Thunderegg, has true melodic gift and a wry, humourous (but not jokey) lyrical touch. I don’t know how long it’ll take me, but I intend of someday getting through everything here on the CD. We should all leave a legacy on this world so impressive.
Want MP3s? The Egg is generous. Go here, close your eyes and click at random. That’s pretty much what I did. But if you want, I suggest starting here:
And I swear my decision to write this record up this week had nothing to do with Stereogum doing the same a few days ago. Really.
|Breakup Breakdown / She Went Black (Cordless)
And at the other end of the spectrum was a package from Cordless Recordings, who despite ostebsibly being an e-label (and a subsidiary of Warner Bros), opted to send out this release in both CD and 7″ formats. I’d said some time ago that the easiest way to get me to listen to something was to send it on vinyl, and good to my word, I quickly popped this record (which was not only coloured, but the THICKEST piece of vinyl I’ve ever laid hands on) onto the turntable and give it a spin. Breakup Breakdown hail from New York City, and even if it didn’t say so in the bio, that’d have been my first guess. They trade in the sort of glam-garage party rock that people who don’t live in New York assume New Yorkers are making. Stompy, sleazy and slightly formulaic, but taken in small doses it doesn’t wear out its welcome.
And I swear my decision to write this record up this week had nothing to do with Coolfer doing the same a few days ago. Really.
|Men Women & Children / Men Women & Children (Nettwerk)
And if you think New York City party music isn’t about the garage-glam but about the disco revival, then Men Women & Children is the band for you. They have all the requisite components of a band in service to the mirror ball, but with one extra crucial ingredient a lot of the others seem to have missed out on – the violins! I don’t know if they’re real or synthesized, but they’re there, they work and they’re guaranteed to make your platforms that much higher and your afro that much fuller. Their (terribly) self-titled album is out March 21 and they were just in town for Canadian Music Week – Chart was on the scene and wasn’t overwhelmed. They’ll be back on March 27 for a show at The Phoenix with Motion City Soundtrack.
np – I Love You But I’ve Chosen Darkness / Fear Is On Our Side