Five Songs, 11/20/2019
Five Songs

Five Songs, 11/20/2019

Violent Femmes, "Out the Window"

Everybody knows the Femmes for their sublime self-titled debut, and with good reason, as it's legitimately one of the all-time great records. But, they didn't actually stop there! I know! This song was on the solid compilation Add It Up, but originally appeared on Why Do Birds Sing?, which is a little all over the place, but does have its moments.

The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, "Lovin' Machine (Automator)"

One of the delights of my new approach here on Five Songs is that I don't have to search around YouTube for whatever remix or whatever popped up. Luxury!

Anyway, the JSBX have one of those pain-in-the-ass discographies that some bands seem prone to. The sort of thing where you get a bunch of variants of things, lots of singles-only releases, labels that go out of business and take good records with them, all that kind of shit. It's exemplified by the fact that they released their first album on three different labels, all with slightly different track listings. One of the things they do is release remix and outtake collections periodically, which are usually pretty inessential, but not QUITE enough to be ignored. This comes from one of those, Xtra-Acme, which obviously followed Acme and features remixes from it and stuff from the same sessions. It's one of the better of these remix albums, for what it's worth.

Dangerdoom, "Mince Meat"

A collaboration between (as the name suggests) Danger Mouse and MF Doom, it...uh, sounds exactly like that description. Danger Mouse is bringing his A-game here, and Doom is always interesting on the mic, so this is a worthwhile record. It is, unfortunately, alone, with no followup from these artists. I guess Danger Mouse got busy with Gnarls Barkley?

Snuff, "Teabag"

UK punk band Snuff were certainly good, but never really captured my imagination particularly. That means I only have a couple albums.

Guided By Voices, "Donkey School"

When Vampire on Titus, which was the last album before their breakthrough Bee Thousand made them indie darlings, was released on CD, the label made the decision to just go ahead and whack Propeller onto it. Because what you need to go with your 18 cuts of no-fi, murky indie rock is 15 extra cuts. It makes for an overwhelming listening experience, frankly. The albums are loaded with ideas more than songs, with things kind of randomly fading in and out. Even when a good song pops up, it usually only lasts for twenty seconds before it goes away. The effect is kind of like listening to a poorly tuned radio that keeps changing stations. The record, in other words, is very skippable.

Joshua Buergel
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