Albert King, "Playing On Me"
This merger of King's blues guitar with the Stax horns, with funk folded in, is just delightful. I need to find some more shit like this. You can add blues to the long list of music that I fundamentally know jack squat about. I'm starting to think I'm not qualified to write a music blog at all!
MU330, "Dropping The Ball"
If you're going to combine ska and punk, you can't half-ass it. Full tempo punk with horns, hell yeah! Yeah, this shit's a laughingstock, but I don't care. It's fun! Screw y'all!
Smashing Orange, "Wired"
Almost totally forgotten psychedelic band Smashing Orange were usually lumped in with the shoegaze scene, but I don't think that's really an accurate characterization. Yeah, they had a lot of big fuzzy guitars, and sure, the vocals are a little buried, but there's nothing particularly dreamy about it. They put out two solid albums, but thanks to a more famous band with a similar name, the rock market moving to grunge, and never really getting any push from the media, they sort of disappeared.
Thanks to having reviewed their albums on a Usenet newsgroup, my name showed up relatively high in the Google results for the band name for a while, leading to people on two different occasions to reach out to me to talk about the band out of the blue. Which is kind of fun! That sort of thing probably wouldn't happen today.
Parquet Courts, "Pathos Prairie"
Parquet Courts are a little hard to get a handle on, honestly. It always seems like, at various times on various albums, they sound like a bunch of different bands. Here, for instance, they kind of sound like the Dead Milkmen. That's not a bad thing, mind you (either sounding different or sounding like the Dead Milkmen), but it makes the band a little hard to describe here. They're good?
Goddamn, still got it, Josh.
The Pixies, "Tony's Theme"
Black Francis's vocal performance here is really pretty astounding. The way he barks "Tony" should be in a museum somewhere.