Wednesday, July 27, 2005

R, IV

Royal Trux- Cats And Dogs

For no reason, I decided in like February or so I needed to own some Royal Trux records. Seriously, no discernable impetus- maybe I saw an ad for them in a back issue of Forced Exposure or something, I don’t know. I just woke up one day and thought I should buy some of their stuff. The Newbs in Harvard Square had a few of their newer albums in the used bin, but faint traces of criticism burned into my brain told me that the recent stuff wasn’t any good. The solution? Go over to Twisted Village and ask Angela what to do.

T.V. is this basement record store in Cambridge (I think it’s where the old Taang! Store was) that specializes in all the coolest, weirdest shit- experimental, brap jazz, Krautrock, you name it. I’ve only had one occasion to go into the store with friends (just the other day, as a matter of fact, after me and Rich and Ned and BQ had what passes for a leisurely breakfast on a weekday at SoundBytes) and it’s hilarious- me and all of my dork pals all have questions about our respective areas of way esoteric musical interest, and not only does Angela know the answers to all of our questions, but she can point us in the direction of similar stuff.

So, anyway, went in, asked which Royal Trux stuff I should check out, and she told me that the massively out-of-print ‘Twin Infinitives’ and the slightly less rare ‘Cats And Dogs’ would be good places to start. A little eBay and pow! A copy of the latter landed on my doorstep a week and a half later, setting me back the princely sum of eight bucks. Right on.

I wonder how people can like Royal Trux but not be into Jandek. The trappings are a little bit different- the Trux feature consistent fe/male vocals, as well as gritty rock-ish sounds that most of the bands that hang at the Model would fucking kill for, serious Stones- but the songs, which I’m pretty sure have some structure if you squint long enough, meander all over the fucking place, seldom repeating riffs as they go. It’s awesome stuff, fascinating and intricate, the kind of record/band you have to devote a lot of time to, much like the ‘Dek. It’s like if Come was playing with no discernable focus but with pre-arranged stops/starts and lyrics. Add the Trux to my list of post-marathon projects.

Run-DMC- Greatest Hits

The blueprint. Yeah, Kool Herc was first, and Flash was crazy, all that, but everything begins with Run-D.M.C. Some of the songs on this record sound a little bit silly so many years after the fact, but even when they do, there’s so much conviction and force behind the rhymes telling us not to be a fool who’s pre-ju-diced or whatever that a free pass is administered until the end of the song. Chances are that the next song slays, anyway.

Routineers- s/t

I bought this one because Bill from Discount plays drums on it. Totally average punk with dual fe/male vocals, the sort of stuff that I have heard a zillion times before. Next.

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