November 23, 2006


The best new record I've heard in a while and one that's been on high rotation over here this week, is Blood Visions, first solo effort by Memphis punk savant Jay Reatard. Back in the day (1998?) I missed out on the Reatards; I guess because of the name and sleeve designs I thought they were sort of a Spare Tyre Oblivians. A little later I somehow got hold of the (insanely rare) debut EP by his next band Lost Sounds, which I loved. They were obviously influenced by early (English) punk, but instead of going "Gonna puke all over you" KBD, "Oh oh I love her so" poppunk or angular Gang Of 4 wavo funko, they're rooted in a tradition that, for want of a better description, I'll call Drama Punk. Intense, almost theatric singing underpinned by fast, urgent, often minor-chord music. (Sort of a very early forerunner of Emo that doesn't suck.) The Adverts come to mind, Wire (not the cool, collected Wire the likes of Elastica were plundering, but the frantic version), the Saints' brilliant "This Perfect Day" (single version, of course) and - to these ears at least - Chris Desjardin's Flesh Eaters (the early 78-79 "thinking-man's-Germs" lineup). Blood Visions is pretty much a continuation of this style; there's even a note-perfect cover of the Adverts' "We Who Wait" (complete with sagging drums like in the original!). The great thing is that, no matter what influences you might dig up, Jay Reatard's music is totally original, great and new! Buy it! Here's some (not too familiar, I hope) examples of what I'm talking about, oh, and as a bonus I've posted that Lost Sounds EP (that I sold a while ago, enabling me to buy 30 or 40 records by the likes of the Adverts).

Adverts - We Who Wait (1977, Safety In Numbers B-side)
Wire - Options R (1978, Dot Dash B-side)
Flesh Eaters - The Word Goes Flesh (1979, from Tooth And Nail comp LP)

Lost Sounds - Plastic Skin
Lost Sounds - Don't Bother Me
Lost Sounds - What Did I Say
Lost Sounds - Lost And Found (2000, debut EP on SolidSexLovieDoll)

November 15, 2006


I'm gone for the weekend; my brother's getting married in England. Where? In Windsor! Sounds like an unlikable place to find old punk records, but then again, unlikable places are the places to look! Couldn't find any song with "wedding" in the title (except Blurt's "This is my Royal Wedding souvenir"), so no mp3 this time. Check out, if you didn't already, the great new Dutch blog 1000 Aspirines (see sidebar)! 'Til next week.

November 10, 2006


As you faithful readers already know, the mid-to-late 80's weren't my favourite period in music. But if was bad in the US/UK, it was about ten times worse over here in Europe. While the early batch of Europunk/HC-bands had a certain naivety/cluelessness that only added to the charm, after about 1985 it was boring self-righteous goody-two-shoes stuff all over the map, with pretentious band names like Life... But How To Live It? and album titles like I Want To Tell About A Way. Even though a lot of those bands were nice people (some of them friends of mine), the sheer humourlessness of it all bummed me out even then. And then, in the middle of the hellish depths of 1988, salvation came in the guise of a tape sent to my friend Hans Engel (R.I.P.) by all-around cool guy Anderz Nielsen (who'd booked our band some gigs in Denmark earlier on). Wow, what is this? Everything about the President Fetch tape was perfect and totally at odds with the times; snotty, pissed off singing (only occasionally straying into "strangled eel" Jello-land), ratty guitar, drums that sounded like drums instead of "God's eardrum being whacked by the Eiffel Tower" (got this from someone who'd once tried to describe the Simple Minds drum sound, too good not to use) and great, simple, singalongapunk songwriting. We quickly got them some gigs around our home town; they came, blew the roof off and went. If the number of T-shirts worn around town is a fair indication of how good a band is, then President Fetch are one of the all-time greats, because it seemed like everybody wore their T-shirt for years (same goes for Raped Teenagers, who came, saw and conquered around the same time); in fact I still see one popping up occasionally! (What washing powder do these people use?) (Oh, sorry, stupid question.) I saw them once or twice a couple of years later, but as far as I can remember it was more metal-tinged by then; I dare guess that also goes for the records they put out in the 90's (that I haven't heard), but this tape will always be a classic!

Furred Animals
I Hate Cowboys
Fuck KKK

P.S.: I'm glad to announce this Yahoo "file not available" shit is done with; but it might take a couple of seconds before downloading starts as it's from an IP address.

November 01, 2006


As this blog is about punk and all I ever blather about is punk, punk, punk, some might think all I ever listen to is punk. To redress the balance I'm going to let you hear just what's been spinning at Eet U Smakelijk Headquarters these last couple of weeks: the brilliant Ultra Chicks CD series of French 60's Ye-Ye girls! These CDs were compiled around the late 90's, and I believe they're currently unavailable, so I guess it's OK to stray from my "R.F.V.O." (Rip From Vinyl Only) principle this time.I've always had a weak spot for French pop, not just "cool" Ye-Ye sounds like Jacques Dutronc, but also the really cheesy stuff, the kind that they used to play on the radio on boring Sundays in the 70's. I sorta expected the music on these CDs to be on the cheesy side as well, you know, like "Poupee De Cire, Poupee De Son" and stuff like that. To my surprise I found tons of fuzz guitar, pounding rhythms and Attitude. In the recent Mojo piece on the 1976 Mont De Marsan punk festival it was pointed out that, while the French might not have concocted punk rock, they sure brought along a lot of the ingredients. These great obscure mid/late 60's tracks strike just the right balance between innocence, brattishness, irreverence and downright rebelliousness; four punk ingredients if ever there were. There's a mean fuzz/whammy Freakbeat guitar at work in a lot of these songs, anyone got a clue who it might have been? I think I also hear former Atlantic guitar whiz Mickey Baker (he of Sylvia) doing his bluesy runs here and there. These records were mostly one-(or two-)offs that didn't get anywhere near the charts, and the singers in question would turn to acting or making kiddie or MOR records, which is probably why the French never realized what a treasure trove they were sitting on until some Canadian released these CDs. O.K., let's go... (And I promise I'll be back with Ye Olde Pun Krock next week)

Claire Dixon - On M'Appelle Petit Bout de Chou
Christine Pilzer - Ah-Hem-Ho-Uh-Err
Dani - Fille A La Moto
Aline - L'Education
Aline - Censure
Christie Laume - Rouge Rouge
Charlotte Leslie - Les Filles...
OP4 - Attention Aux Garcons
Monique Thubert - Booff
Arlette Zola - Mathematique Elementaire
Sophie Mansart - Au Secours Aidez-Moi
Stone - C'est Ma Vie
Ariane - Tu Voudrais Que J'Oublie