Tuesday, August 16, 2005


Smoking Popes- Born To Quit

I totally had the review in my head as I put the disc in- the vocal similarities between the Popes’ singer and Morrissey (this right after I listened to three Smiths records in a row, mind you).

The Popes disc skipped, though, got rejected by my CD player.

And the one in the kitchen.

And in the living room.


Solex- Pickup

Used record store owner from across the pond goes through all of the weird unsellable shit, finds the craziest samples, then constructs a record of completely bent pop songs out of ‘em.

Seriously twisted stuff here- no reason why the beats (if you wanna call ‘em that) should work, but they do. As a point of reference, think back to the vinyl LP that you listened to the most when you were growing up. You know that one skip in like the middle of the third song on the second side, how it’d play the same groove over and again if you didn’t give it a little nudge? ‘Pickup’ is a whole record like that. Ms. Esselink’s vocals even make the shit sound poppy.

Soul Side- Soon. Come.Happy

Soul Side has always been a group that I’ve known through namedrops of the second-hand variety. It was never my friends telling me about this act that they loved. Instead, it was critics throwing the band’s name into an article to bolster the cred of Girls Against Boys. You know: “Girls Against Boys formed from the ashes of seminal D.C. punks Soul Side, who released blah blah blah Dischord Records.”

Not a slag, by any means- Girls Against Boys had some cool songs, and Soul Side is certainly a product of a period after Rites of Spring where the fusion of melody, heavy guitars and personal lyrics was not yet a commodity or an identifiable, marketable genre. They were doing their thing, and well. In my particular corner of the world, I didn’t hear them or know anyone who did until much, much later, when their name became the cred chip that I already mentioned. Betcha that they would have made more of an impact if I’d heard ‘em earlier (like before I was inching up on thirty).


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