New Jersey vets bring the '60s pop hooks

million reasonsMillion Reasons - RGD (Serious Machines Records)

You know what? Right now there are probably more music bands than at any other time. I could be wrong, of course. But I doubt it.

The music industry isn't as interested as it used to be. More fool them.

I recall hearing REM's first LP, "Murmur", back in 1983.

God, what an old coot I am.

We used to wear an onion on our belt back then, it was one of those things you did, like riding a chopped bicycle decorated with annoying plastic things.

On the crazy train with visionary blaster Billy Tsounis

warp delights"Warp Delights" - Billy Tsounis (self released)

I think I may have heard "Cow Lands Plane Eats Pilot" before, or maybe it was just in a dream, I've been having pretty heavy heady, horizonless dreams lately and me and Billy Tsounis are sometimes tuned in to some of the same static-y frequencies.

I dunno why it makes me think of aliens and toasted pop tarts on space saucers, but it's possibly something to do with my Valter Longo intermittent fasting regimen and this infinitely sentimental time of year. I like "Serene" space rock invested with swirling sensuality and delicate little wing kozmic blues sound rituals.

Billy Tsounis is from Cali via Boston via Greece with the Milky Way still in his untamed stare. He's still got that get down like they don't know how in this ghost town. I find his music very therapeutic and uplifting, he transcends every definable genre , space and time. He brings on the machine gun compound crackling speaker bullhorn manifesto and the magic carpet ride away to Morocco or Marrakesh or wherever it is that rich rock stars may still retreat from gentrified iPhone society to smoke hash or sit at the feet of Jamaican holy rollers and receive their crystal visions in silky opium dens, like decadent emperors. He does not really belong to any one religious practice or musical discipline. He is not here to please yo mama's easily digested tv programming sensibilities.

Brutality can be beautiful

so i could have them destroyedSo I Could Have Them Destroyed – The Hard-Ons (Music Farmers)

We need to talk. Oh, yes, we do.

There were doubts about this one. I’d seen the songs played live. Whether it was unfamiliarity or just an off night, to these ears the set didn’t gel. It cried out for more light and less shade. Ease off that pedal-to-the-metal thing, baby. Not in a greatest hits way, but maybe with the odd well-chewed pop bone thrown in. It wasn’t bad. Just not earth shattering.

Then the album arrived and hit the disc player.

Fark.

Brothers in arms

taste for evilTaste for Evil – The Cuthroat Brothers (Hound Gawd)

You’re over all those punk-blues duos? You prefer your blues un-bent, right? And you never want to see red and white stripes again? Think again.

The Cuthroat Brothers are real-life barbers from the US Pacific Northwest city of Tacoma, an area that also spawned The Sonics. One of them (Donny Paycheck) drummed for Zeke. Studio wiz Jack Endino (Mudhoney, Nirvana, Soundgarden) produced this, their second album. 

They sing songs about “blood, death, drugs, sex, black magic (and) bad relationships” and their music is raucous, rough-edged and rambunctious. What’s not to like?

When pop-rock knew no limits

no limitNo Limit: Collected Works 1985-89 – Love Minus Zero (Method Records and Music)

From the Never Quite Made It Department comes this collection of gems.

Love Minus Zero was a Sydney pop-rock band that was around in the mid-‘80s who managed to release some tracks on Waterfront label compilation and a self-titled EP on Citadel spin-off Green Fez before packing their tent.

“No Limit” is a pubic service of sorts, not the least reason being that it serves as a reminder of the embarrassment of riches that was the Sydney music scene 35 years ago.

Two albums full of piss and vinegar

bomber down address to the nation sm

Address to the Nation - Chris Masuak and the Viveiro Wave Riders (I-94 Bar Records)
Bomber Down - Bomber Down (self released)

“Address to the Nation” and “Bomber Down” come out of the blocks, fiery and roaring, full of piss and vinegar. Tight strong songs, stuff that belongs on the stereo, in the car, loud at parties and annoying pimply neighbours who ruin the neighbourhood and go to bed at 8.30.

“Address to the Nation” is Klondike's fourth long-playing solo band CD; the others, although most readers of this site will have them, were Klondike's North 40: “The Straight Path”; Chris Klondike Masuak “Workhorse”; Chris Masuak and the Viveiro “'Brujita”.and now this all issued by the website you're reading now.

Full Disclosure nonsense: I like Chris too. Also, I knew the members of the immediate precursor to Bomber Down, Phil, Sean, Rob and Tony. Rob and Tony are no longer with us - it's not been a good year.