Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year, Y'All!

I don't know about you, but I'm more than ready to see the back of 2014. It's been a tough year, but I'm ever optimistic that the next one will be better, so come on 2015! May you and yours have a year filled with happiness, good times, and even better music.

"Auld Lang Syne" is New Year's tradition, and though it's actually quite sad, it's a favorite of mine. I'll always have fond memories of Scotland, snow, and drunken dancing. Ah, Bobby Burns! Some interesting versions of this timeless ditty are below. 

Big sloppy New Year kisses to you all!  































[posted 12.31.14]












Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas Singles Club: Vim Cortez

I love a little bit of tongue-in-cheek when it comes to the holidays, and my inbox just got a little injection straight from Paris.

Vim Cortez's "Christmas is For Lovers (Too)" is a sugar rush of a song, gently mocking the more earnest of Christmas songs with subtle silliness and a wee bit of over-the-top camp. It's a holiday earworm, and a pleasing antidote if you're just about overdosed on Christmas standards. 






[posted 12.23.14]

Monday, December 22, 2014

Good Cover Version: HELLBIRDS Does Phil Spector

Pulp gave the world the song "Bad Cover Version." But seeing as I'm a sonic optimist, I'm of the belief that there's more likely than not more good cover versions floating around than bad ones. Good Cover Version celebrates the good, and leaves all that bad and ugly stuff alone.

Oh, Phil. Absolutely one of the classic Christmas records, that's for sure. New York's HELLBIRDS has taken on an ambitious cover project of the entire A Christmas Gift For You record, and I'm quite taken with their cover of "Christmas." It's a favorite song of the season of mine, and I'm into the slightly warbly, more than slightly melancholic lo-fi/Americana rendition HELLBIRDS has gone for. An interesting listen to help get you into the Spector spirit. 






[posted 12.22.14]

Video Of The Day #26: James Apollo

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

Christmastime has the uncanny ability to bring out the sads in many folks. Something about the end of the year can be cause for some serious bah humbug. James Apollo captures the essence of the Christmastime blues perfectly with "Ho Ho, Ho Hum." The black and white clip is throwback in feel, and the somewhat seedy early 60s club vibe fits his downtrodden showman thing so very well. It's a dandy. 








[posted 12.22.14]

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Video Of The Day #25: Wray

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

What's a great thing to watch on a Baltic Saturday morning? Wray's clip for "Bad Heart," that's what. Sun-drenched desert sands are whipped up by two mysterious, black-clad motorcycle demons who get up to eyebrow-raising activities once the sun sinks below the horizon. It's a great visual manifestation of the chunky, relentlessly swirling scuzzed-up riffs that abound in the song. 

And here's more Wray to get your weekend started off on the right foot:






[posted 12.20.14]

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Untitled Interview #205: Starring Ignacio Gonzalez (Mystic Braves)

Y'all know I love love love Mystic Braves. After all, they've got that sound. That sweet, sweet psych-pop-western-soundtrack kinda sound that's infectious beyond belief. It will come as a surprise to approximately none of you that their latest release will be featured prominently in my Best Of 2014 list.

But before we get there, let me stop putting the cart before this horse and give you a little something good to read. The Mystic Braves sound features plenty of wacky, delightful keyboard hijinks, and the man behind those gleeful flourishes, Ignacio Gonzalez, was kind enough to partake in some good ole q + a. Read on to see how he feels about former mortuaries, what LA bands currently float his boat, and how the Happy Birthday song figures in, and then be sure to listen to Mystic Braves all the livelong day. 


Fuzzy Logic: How the hell are you?

Ignacio Gonzalez: Doin Swell!

FL: What was the last song you listened to?

IG: "Tree Pie" by Orange Alabaster Mushroom!

FL: Playing music is:

IG: Necessary.

FL: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?

IG: It wasn't an album but one of those Time Life infomercials that used to come on the television selling a compilation that was all 60s music. They would show clips of live footage along with a few seconds of all these classic songs. Good Stuff.

FL: Beatles or Stones?

IG: The Bones.

FL: Top 5 albums (of now, of this week, of ever):

IG: Easter Everywhere by 13th Floor Elevators, The Seeds self titled, Behold and See by The Ultimate Spinach, A Hard Day's Night by The Beatles, Nico & Her Psychedelic Subconscious by Mr. Elevator & The Brain Hotel.

FL: Half-full or half-empty?

IG: Full. keep it positive.

FL: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?

IG: While living in Los Angeles right now there are so many groups doing so many great things it's a bit difficult to say who is making the best music but some of our favorites are Drinking Flowers, anything Joel Jerome does, Wyatt Blair, Corners, The Shine Brothers, Mr. Elevator & The Brain Hotel, The Resonars, Levitation Room... All great bands, great people doing great things.

FL: What's the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?

IG: Every morning brings a different thought because every day is new.

FL: Little-known Mystic Braves fact?

IG: We all enjoy cheesy commercial radio country jams.

FL: The greatest record store in the world is:

IG: Lolipop Records.

FL: Your boots were made for:

IG: Dancin'!

FL: Shaken or stirred?

IG: Stirred.

FL: Favorite venue (either to play or to visit)?

IG: We love playing in our home town at The Echo and The Echoplex. On the road we dig the Chapel. The wooden ex-mortuary vibe resonates well with our vibe and sound.

FL: Best piece of advice you've ever been given?

IG: Life is a day to day reality and the present moment is THEE most important moment because it becomes the past and dictates the future. Dig.

FL: If you weren't in a band you'd be?

IG: Trying to be in a band.

FL: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?

IG: Some of us are in a side project band called L'Aura Moire which is pretty much a 60s French Pop ye ye vibe and are the house band for a French night here in LA.

FL: Best song ever written?

IG: The Happy Birthday Song.





[posted 12.19.14]

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Guest Best Of: Starring PJ Sykes (Hoax Hunters)

It's time for another year to come to an end, and y'all know what that means...Best Of lists! In honor of the wrapping up of 2014, I'm collecting lists from friends for another year, and mine will be coming in the kinda sorta near future. In the meantime, check out what some pretty awesome folks had to say about some of the pretty awesome records that came out over the past 365 days. 

PJ Sykes was one of the first Richmond folks I met back when I was a River City denizen, and in a city full of talented folks he's pretty far up there. Currently making lots of wonderful noise with Hoax Hunters, odds are good you've probably seen some of his killer band photography over the years as well. He's also got great taste in tunes, which you'll pick up on once you've seen his top ten, listed below.   




St. Vincent - St. Vincent
Annie is the future and this album is just the teaser trailer. Hard to pick a favorite track but I'll go with "Huey Newton" no wait "Rattlesnake" or wait…

Bob Mould - Beauty & Ruin
How does he keep doing it? Hints of Hüsker Dü, Sugar and his solo work makes this more of a follow up to his book, See A Little Light, more than his last album. "I Don't Know You Any More" is an instant classic.

Bleeding Rainbow - Interrupt
My neighborhood knows this record as the sound blaring out of my house all summer. Bummed I missed them play with Positive No because of a little snow. "Start Again" and again and again.

Mogwai - Rave Tapes
This one grew on me and I didn't fully 'get it' until I saw them live. "Repelish" reminds me of the Pi soundtrack. Bonus: CODY reissue is killer!

Thurston Moore - The Best Day
This one just hits the spot. Maybe because I got to see him play a bunch of times the last two years at Hopscotch? Favorite track is "Speak To The Wild"

Grandma Sparrow - Grandma Sparrow & His Piddletractor Orchestra
This one is wild! I didn't really know what I was getting myself into but now I can't put it down. It's best listened to as a whole piece of music but "Nap Time: Twelve-Tone Lullaby" will give you a taste.

SWANS - To Be Kind
I don't have much to say other than… damn! Dim the lights, drink whiskey and just listen to this one all the way through. Can't wait to see them destroy RVA in March. I can't isolate a single track. Also, St. Vincent sings on several tracks.

Foo Fighters - Sonic Highways
They didn't break any new ground musically but they did pull off a really ambitious project. I think people tend to criticize them harder than other bands for various reasons. I've got no complaints. "Outside" is my jam.

Hospitality - Trouble
I just love Amber's voice. Solid road trip album. Drop "I Miss Your Bones" into your next mix.

Pontiak - Innocence
This one got a lot of spins at the beginning of the year. I'm rocking "Ghosts" as I type this list.

Albums I need to spend more time with:

My Brightest Diamond - This Is My Hand

Shellac - Dude Incredible

Iceage - Plowing Into the Field of Love

…And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead - IX






[posted 12.18.14]
[Instagram by Melissa Koch]



Saturday, December 13, 2014

Video of The Day #24: Kissing Cousins

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

The short version about this here video is to say that I love everything about it. It's the season of the witch in this spooky clip for "In With Them," by Los Angeles psych rock coven Kissing Cousins. Muted, sun-dappled hazes of woodland scenes add to the irresistible magic of the video, and the song itself is steeped in decadent, ever so slightly salacious rock and roll. It's divine, if I do say so myself. 







[posted 12.13.14]

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Untitled Interview #204: Starring Matt Loft (Lola Colt)

I've been all atwitter about Lola Colt lately. There's something about that band that really seeps under your skin, especially for those of us who can wholeheartedly appreciate the beauty of their glorious psychgaze hybrid. It somehow fits that the band took their name from a film (a spaghetti western, no less), as their songs at times have a cinematic feel.

Guitarist Matt Loft is part of a heck of a noise-making juggernaut in an outfit prone to furious bursts of bone-jellying racket amidst general washes of dirges and drones. Read on to see what Fur, the Velvet Underground, and Bill Murray have to do with Loft. And be sure to get your hands on Lola Colt's Away From the Water lp. Trust me. Just do it already.   

Fuzzy Logic: How the hell are you?
Matt Loft: Happy that winter is finally here.

FL: What was the last song you listened to?
ML: "Venado Azul" - by a new band called TAU.

FL: Playing music is:
ML: Life or Death.

FL: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?
ML: The Velvet Underground & Nico.

FL: Beatles or Stones?
ML: Oxygen or Food?

FL: Top 5 albums of this week:
ML: Pappa Mali - Do Your Thing
Holy Wave - Relax
King Gizzard and the Wizard Lizard - I'm In Your Mind Fuzz
Dizzy Stilettos - Turbo Satanic
Warpaint - Warpaint

FL: Favorite music-related movie?
ML: 24 Hour Party People.

FL: Half-full or half-empty?
ML: Today… half full.

FL: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?
ML: Couldn't possibly pick - too much great noise coming from everywhere.

FL: What's the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?
ML: Was that real or was it a dream?

FL: Little-known Lola Colt fact?
ML: Our first ever gig was under the name 'Fur.'

FL: The greatest record store in the world is:
ML: Sister Rays.

FL: Your boots were made for:
ML: Moonwalking.

FL: Shaken or stirred?
ML: Who are we to argue with Mr. Bond? Shaken.

FL: Favorite venue (either to play or to visit)?
ML: One of our favourites to play this year was Paradiso in Amsterdam.

FL: Best piece of advice you've ever been given?
ML: Don't grow up it's a trap.

FL: If you weren't in a band you'd be?
ML: Exploring some distant land.

FL: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?
ML: Bill Murray.

FL: Best song ever written?
ML: "White Rabbit" - Jefferson Airplane.



[posted 12.11.14]

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Live Review: Bonfire Beach @ Black Cat, 9/21/14

It has been my experience over these many years that those darling Dandy Warhols tend to have pretty good bands touring with them. Case in point: Bonfire Beach

Side gig of Miss Dexy Valentine (Magic Wands), Bonfire Beach had me under their spell pretty much right off the bat. Their sound trends towards a sultry darkness, full of drone, fuzz, and muscle. Valentine's take on girl group cooing was ferocious, husky and low and meaning all sorts of business. And those shades didn't come off all set long. 

The band played a hell of a set. They somehow balance this irrepressible spark with an attitude of utter nonchalance, as if they just expect to roll out of bed and sound killer. I loved every song they played, and hopefully it won't be too long before they're back in this neck of the woods.

The below gives you an idea more of Valentine's pipes than the band's racket, but it makes for a nice Saturday morning listen.






[posted 12.6.14]

[photo copyright Megan Petty]

Video of The Day #23: A Place to Bury Strangers

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

I know how shocked y'all are to see this particular post. It's not like I don't love pretty much everything A Place to Bury Strangers does or anything. But really, this video is a must-see. It's creepy as all get out, in a very dark, surreptitious way that sneaks up on you. And as for the song, "Straight," let's just say it's becoming a fast favorite with the raucous, breakneck pace and omnipresent slinky badassness that all APTBS songs have. Watch. Listen. Repeat. Ad infinitum.

Also, the band just announced some dates for next year. You can bet I'll be at at least one of them.  







[posted 12.6.14]

The Untitled Interview #203: Starring Matthew Schufman (Graveyard Club)

Graveyard Club caught my ear several months back, with the all sorts of infectious synth goodie "The Night is Mine." They Minneapolis outfit has since released a full length, which is full of more dizzying, 80s-inspired poptacular good times. It's darling without being precious, and yours truly is turning into quite a fan.

I do believe Matthew Schufman (he of keys and vocals) are pretty simpatico. After all, he's an Ash fan, and in the US we tend to be a bit on the scarce side. Read on to get the skinny on Schufman's alternate universe career plans, his perhaps not that surprising choice for musical cover band, and which literary great offers good advice. And be sure to check out Nightingale. I do believe you'll be glad you did. 

Fuzzy Logic: How the hell are you?

Matthew Schufman: I am doing well thanks – mega busy but good.

FL: What was the last song you listened to?

MS: While I am writing this I am listening to “Art Smock” off Days of Abandon by The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. The whole album is fantastic. (-ed. note: this is very, very true)

FL: Playing music is:

MS: My obsession.

FL: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?

MS: It was a different record for everyone in the band, but for me it was definitely either Nu-clear Sounds by Ash or Galore (Singles) by the Cure. Not many people know about Ash in the States – but they write such great, catchy songs. I fell in love with them the first time I heard them.

FL: Beatles or Stones?

MS: The Beach Boys.

FL: Top 5 albums (of now, of this week, of ever):

MS: This list is always changing for me, so I’ll go with “of now” (no particular order):
1. Days of Abandon - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
2. Upside Down Mountain - Conor Oberst
3. Brotherhood - New Order (this is always on the list I think haha)
4. Portamento - The Drums
5. Ghoul School EP - Dragon Inn 3

FL: Favorite music-related movie?

MS: I don’t know if this counts as “music-related” but I remember seeing Donnie Darko as a teenager and loving the music. It has some great bands in it like Echo and the Bunnymen, Tears for Fears, and The Church, but it also had an amazing instrumental score by Michael Andrews.

FL: Half-full or half-empty?

MS: Half-full.

FL: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?

MS: Well, I’m not sure if they’re “peers” or not but Mike’s (the guitar player) cousin play drums in Cayucas, and we love them. I’ve been listening to “Bigfoot” quite a bit all summer.

FL: What's the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?

MS: It probably has to do with coffee, sadly.

FL: Little-known Graveyard Club fact?

MS: We were actually named Monster Club when we released our first EP, but there’s a band named No Monster Club in Ireland and things got pretty confusing quickly, so we changed it to Graveyard Club. We were all happy it happened because everyone in the band likes the name Graveyard Club better, anyway.

FL: The greatest record store in the world is:

MS: Hymie’s in Minneapolis.

FL: Your boots were made for:

MS: Dancing.

FL: Shaken or stirred?

MS: Stirred.

FL: Favorite venue (either to play or to visit)?

MS: Our favorite venue in Minneapolis is First Avenue & 7th St Entry.

FL: Best piece of advice you've ever been given?

MS: “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

FL: If you weren't in a band you'd be?

MS: An elementary school teacher.

FL: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?

MS: Definitely New Order.

FL: Best song ever written?

MS: That’s way too hard to answer, so I’m gonna go with “Graduation Song” by Vitamin C.





[posted 12.6.14]

Monday, December 1, 2014

The Untitled Interview #202: Starring Justin Hoben (The Deadmen)

It's safe (and pretty obvious by now) to say that The Deadmen is by far one of my favorite local bands. They've got a little bit of everything good - a little bit of rustic Americana, a little bit of country, a little bit of shimmy...y'all know what I'm talking about. It's good stuff, and if you haven't given them a listen yet I'm pretty disappointed in you.

I made some queries to Deadmen HQ, and Justin Hoben (one of the band's two guitar-playing and singing Justins) had the following replies. Obviously, Justin knows the correct answer to question 5. Make sure you take a gander, and if you're local, make sure you're at DC9 on the 16th of this very month when the band does their thing.

Fuzzy Logic: How the hell are you?
Justin Hoben: Hangin' in there.

FL: What was the last song you listened to?
JH: GnR - "Sweet Child o' Mine" (not by choice but I'm not complaining).

FL: Playing music is:
JH: Hit or miss.

FL: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?
JH: Dead Milkmen - Big Lizard in My Backyard.

FL: Beatles or Stones?
JH: Stones, again and again.

FL: Top 5 albums (of now, of this week, of ever):
JH: Bob Dylan - Bringing it All Back Home; Violent Femmes - self titled; The Replacements - Let it Be; Canyon - Empty Rooms; Jawbreaker - 24 Hour Revenge Therapy.

FL: Favorite music-related movie?
JH: I'm still hoping for an adaptation of Our Band Could Be Your Life. So i suppose The Decline of Western Civilization, by default. Or Don't Look Back. Or Losers Take All. Is there a Shaggs documentary?

FL: Half-full or half-empty?
JH: EMPTY.

FL: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?
JH: Fellow Deadmen excluded, I've got my money on Brandon Butler, as usual.

FL: What's the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?
JH: "Five more minutes."

FL: Little-known Deadmen fact?
JH: We put Bill Murray on the guest list of every show we play.

FL: The greatest record store in the world is:
JH: Joe's Record Paradise.

FL: Your boots were made for:
JH: Making me feel inferior when I see Josh Read's boots.

FL: Shaken or stirred?
JH: Shaken.

FL: Favorite venue (either to play or to visit)?
JH: 9:30 Club.

FL: Best piece of advice you've ever been given?
JH: "Deal with it."

FL: If you weren't in a band you'd be?
JH: Complaining a lot more.

FL: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?
JH: Rick Springfield. My first two concerts were his Working Class Dog and Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet tours. Hartford Civic Center. '81 and '82 respectively.

FL: Best song ever written?
JH: The Drones - "Sixteen Straws."





[posted 12.1.14]

[photo copyright Megan Petty]


Sunday, November 30, 2014

Video of The Day #22: Lola Colt

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

The more I hear from Lola Colt, the deeper under their spell I get. This clip sees the band performing a flawless rendition of "Driving Mr. Johnny" from their top secret HQ, all smoky tendrils of witchcraft and wizardry and good old fashioned rock emanating from the band as they let loose amongst a backdrop of angular lights and quivering camera shots. It's quite a song of seduction, and it's got some serious muscle to it. 

To me, this is a heck of a siren song, and if I end up bloodied and broken on some rocky coastal outcropping, so be it. I could listen to this all day/week/month.

You can revisit what I've already had to say about the incomparable Lola Colt hither.  





[posted 11.30.14]

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Bands On Film #58: Augustines @ U Street Music Hall, 10/1/14




























Augustines


[all photos copyright Megan Petty]

[posted 10.4.14]

Howdy Again Y'all!

Hello dear friends! It's been a long time. I hope you've been keeping well, staying out of trouble/jail, and listening to a whole lot of good music since last we spoke. 

Holy cow it's October! I must apologize, the Fuzzy summer break turned into a hiatus that ended up being a lot longer than I had planned. Sorry. But you know how life can be! Watch this space for news coming in the not super distant future, but for now, your girl is back and promises not to disappear like that again. 

Now, let's get back to the music, shall we...

Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Untitled Interview #201: Starring Matt Kivel

As is sometimes the way, it didn't take all that long for it to happen. I fell in deep, major smit with Matt Kivel's Days of Being Wild record about ten seconds into hearing the gorgeous "Insignificance." The whole album has this beautiful, lo-fi sunshine sound, idyllic in its way and impossible not to fall for. You'll hear me gush more about it later, don't you worry.

Naturally, I was curious about Mr. Kivel. So read on, dear friends, for a glimpse into the thoughts of a heck of a musician with a penchant for 80s pop song sweetness and a serious hankering for a pair of boots. 


Fuzzy Logic: How the hell are you?
Matt Kivel: I'm fine at the moment.

FL: What was the last song you listened to?
MK: A song I wrote yesterday. I was listening to it a few minutes ago. I worked on the lyrics last night. The melody has been kicking around for a few days. It might be something worth pursuing on the next record. The lyrics are kind of different than some of the things I've done in the past. gospel-thunderous drums- with some wiry electric guitar, played at a slow slow pace

FL: Playing music is:
MK: Something i do on a fairly regular basis

FL: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?
MK: Wilco yankeehotelfoxtrot.

FL: Beatles or Stones?
MK: Beatles ... the songs are too beautiful

FL: Top 5 albums (of now, of this week, of ever):
MK: This week:

Nirvana - In Utero
Pussygutt / Story of Rats - Sea of Sand
Various artists - Laila je T'aime
Cass McCombs - Big Wheel and Others
Amps for Christ - Canyons Cars and Crows

FL: Favorite music-related movie?
MK: Step Across the Border.

FL: Half-full or half-empty?
MK: Half full.

FL: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?
MK: I don't think they're necessarily my peers, but I really feel like Bill Callahan, Will Oldham, Joanna Newsom and Robert Wyatt are probably making the best music right now.

FL: What's the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?
MK: It's nice to see my girlfriend.

FL: Little-known Matt Kivel fact?
MK: I wrote two record reviews for The Wire in 2007 ... album reviews for Prefuse 73 and J Dilla.

FL: The greatest record store in the world is:
MK: Mono records in Echo Park.

FL: Your boots were made for:
MK: I've never actually owned any proper boots. i'd like to someday. 

FL: Shaken or stirred?
MK: Shaken.

FL: Favorite venue (either to play or to visit)?
MK: The Echo.

FL: Best piece of advice you've ever been given?
MK: Learn to record yourself -- Mitchell Froom.

FL: If you weren't in a band you'd be?
MK: I'm not in a band anymore!

FL: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?
MK: Probably Nick Drake, or Fairport Convention.

FL: Best song ever written?
MK: "Born to Run" by Bruce Springsteen.







[posted 8.24.14]