= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
                                   questions/comments/concerns - email thomas.magnum at

                                                              all contents copyright Jake Thomas

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =       

   (updated 4/30
/2019)                                      Photo Journal   (updated 4/30/2019)       
                Music Reviews   (updated 4/22/2019)                          Live Show Review Archives

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

Photo Archive:       
 +++People+++         +++Places+++         +++Bands+++        
+++Mouse!+++         +++Burt!+++
Pointless Nonsense Archive:         +++Movie Reviews+++         +++Links+++
                                                                (None of these have been updated in ages)                                          
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

***April Thirtieth Two Thousand and Nineteen***   

Rare unseen footage from early rough draft of the film "Alien."


Instagrams -

A rare outside nap for the delicate dandy.  Cary, NC.  

Galaxie 500.  Charleston, SC.  

Elton Lo.  Nags Head, NC.  

There are no words for this place.  South of the Border, SC.  


Movies -

29 movies in March - I almost got there!  I can't recommend the Nate Bargatze special enough - I laughed so much.  

Best of the month (new): High Flying Bird (2019)
Best of the month (already seen): Se7en (1995)
Best of the month (stand-up): Nate Bargatze: The Tennessee Kid (2019)
Worst of the month: Another Son Of Sam (1977)
I don't think that's a real dragon: Q (1982)
Why yes, I do have a little girl so this is playing all the time in my house: Frozen (2013)
Black boobs, white boobs: Black Mama, White Mama (1972)
Well, now we know what the song P.Y.T. was about: Leaving Neverland (2019)
This month in happy crying: Mister Rogers: It’s You I Like (2018)
That final climbing seen though: Free Solo (2018)

The rest:
It’s A Hard Truth, Ain’t It (2018), I Feel Pretty (2018), Love, Simon (2018), Piranha (1978), Maze Runner: The Death
Cure (2018), Moonshine County Express (1977), Casino (1995), Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008), Super Troopers 2
(2018), Agnostic Front: The Godfathers Of Hardcore (2017), Entebbe (2018), The First Purge (2018), The Inventor:
Out For Blood In Silicon Valley (2019), Friday (1995), Broadcast News (1987), Nightmare Honeymoon (1973),
Wildling (2018), 306 Hollywood (2018), Pretty Woman (1990)


Links -

Only one skate vid this month - Shawn Hale had a part in the Birdhouse team offering "Beautiful Mutants" that was
just goddamn delightful - a perfect mix of weird and fun and gnar, one of the rare parts I've watched multiple times.  

A couple of music reviews this month - the new Ex-Hex records slays, to the surprise of no one.            

I finally editted all the snaps from our trip to SF and stuck them in the photo journal , as one does.  


Spiral Stairs
With Spider Bags
Cat’s Cradle Back Room

I was supposed to be seeing Hamish Kilgour (of the Clean) in the opening slot of this Spiral Stairs gig, but at some
point between when I bought the ticket and show time he had been swapped out with Spider Bags for reasons that
would never be given (though the obvious culprit is likely travel from New Zealand).  I’ve seen Spider Bags a shit ton
lately, but they’re still a damn fine back-up plan that I’ll never complain about.  This isn’t the first time I’ve said this, but
their sets seem to be getting shorter by number of songs, but the songs are getting longer and jammier in that great
seventies butt-rock way.  I keep waiting for a James Gang or Joe Walsh cover to make their way into the set list.  They
played pretty much everything I wanted to hear except for “Keys To The City,” so stop not playing that please, Mr.

This Spiral Stairs outing was very similar to the last time I saw him – new record to promote, guest appearance from
Pavement drummer Steve West (who lives somewhere in Virginia), a little sloppy, but for sure a lot of fun.  They kicked
things off with the opening track “Hyp-No-Tized” from the new album “We Wanna Be Hyp-No-Tized,” and Scott
Kannberg spent the entire time roaming the stage and adjusting the volume of the entire band’s amps like that mad
man Mark E. Smith (RIP).  I finally figured out where at least a couple of his backing band members come from: the
Posies and Snowglobe; maybe by the next time they come around I will have figured out the entire band.  The set was
mostly from the two most recent records, plus a Preston School Of Industry track and a Nick Lowe cover (“Truth Drug”
maybe?).  And, of course, we can’t forget the Pavement portion of the evening with West on drums: they played an
all-time favorite “Kennel District,” plus “Date With Ikea,” “Passat Dream,” and “Painted Soldiers.”  I really, truly do like
the Spiral Stairs records, I think Scott’s recent production is just as good as that of his former counterpart Stephen
Malkmus…but hearing Scott & Steve play Pavement songs is never not going to be the highlight of the evening. 


Teenage Fanclub
With Eric Bachmann & The Love Language
Haw River Ballroom

There is no tool to accurately measure just how excited I was to see Teenage Fanclub again.  Last time was five
years ago at Merge25, in the middle of the day in the blisteringly hot parking lot of the Cradle, and despite all that it
was still a blast.  This time around, with a better venue, a reasonable temperature, and me planted right at the front
trying to get a good picture or two?  It quite literally doesn’t get any better than that.  One major bummer is founding
member Gerard Love is no longer with the band – his harmonies were definitely missed.  That said, I doubt it’s tough
for a band of this stature to find adequate fill-ins for their touring ensemble – in this case, bassist Dave McGowan
(Belle & Sebastian) and Euros Childs (Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci) signed on to join Norman Blake, Raymond McGinley,
and long-time drummer Francis Macdonald in a fantastic performance of tracks from across the band’s entire 30
year catalog.  They played one or two songs from all nine of their full-length releases; the exception was my favorite
Fanlub record, “Songs From Northern Britain,” which got four(!!!) selections.  Highlights included “The Cabbage,”
“I Don’t Want Control Of You,” “The Concept,” “Alcoholiday,” “Baby Lee,” ...and also every other song they played, to
be completely honest.  The harmonies between Blake & McGinley were still spot on after all these years – it’s abso-
lutely impossible not to sing along when Teenage Fanclub is playing, people standing around me be damned.

While this gig was a few months earlier than the proper Merge30 festival in July, it was still considered part of the 30th
anniversary festivities - and consequently the label filled both opener slots with fellow Merge artists.  The Love
Language started the night, a group I hadn’t seen in ages though I’m not entirely sure why.  Outside of front man Stu
McLamb, I’m pretty sure the membership of this band is different every time I see them – this version was a five piece,
for those keeping track at home.  Eddie from Fin Fang Foom/Solar Halos was playing bass, which was a bit of a sur-
prise because I don’t think of him as a pop guy, but of course he did a fine job.  I must confess I only really know Love
Language's first two records, but I know them quite well – and luckily they threw in just enough of those older tracks to
hold my attention, including two all-time favorites “Providence” and “Lalita.”  The middle-aged guy standing near me
might have been more into this performance than any person I’ve ever seen at any show ever.  I wish I knew that level
of joy in my life.

The middle act was Eric Bachmann…hey, I’ve seen this guy before!  His band was the same three dudes he had
with him at the Merge Hopscotch day party last year, and they played many of the same songs (though the set was
slightly longer).  There was a smattering of old Crooked Fingers material (“Crowned In Chrome,” etc) but it was mostly
tracks from his last two solo records – “Murmuration” and “Dreaming” standing out as highlights.  Much like last time,
I was hoping Skylar Gudasz would show up to add backing vocals, but it wasn’t to be.  One of these days I’ll hopefully
get a repeat of that Hopscotch performance from a couple of years ago, but until then I’ll still enjoy basically any show
I can get out of the man, no matter the format, line-up, or songs played.   


The Cowboys
with Personality Cult
The Nightlight

I’ve been trying to see Personality Cult for ages now, and by “trying” I mean not leaving the house but silently cursing
myself for being suck a lazy pile of shit.  This bill was strong enough to motivate me though – that and the fact I hadn’t
seen live music in nearly two months.  The band is fronted by Ben Carr, who you may also know from Last Year’s Men
and Natural Causes and probably a bunch of other things (I feel like maybe I saw him in Paint Fumes at one point
too?), plus a couple of other dudes I didn’t know who may or may not have been twins.  What’s great about Carr is all
of his bands go in a different direction – Last Year’s Men did a twangy garage thing ala the Reigning Sound, Natural
Causes went down an angry Gary Numan synth punk path, and this latest act is just straight-up first gen catchy-as-
fuck punk ala the Buzzcocks.  They bashed out pretty much their entire self-titled record from last year in around 20
minutes – outside of having to borrow a guitar from the Cowboys after breaking two strings on the very first song, the
band was no muss, no frills, no banter, just rock.  I’m good with that.  More acts would be smart to follow that same

The Cowboys are a quirky power pop four-piece out of Bloomington, Indiana that single-handedly defy the stereotype
that nothing good ever came out of that state other than “Hoosiers.”  The band has a lead singer!  For some reason
that will never not be odd to me at any music venue outside of a large amphitheater or arena.  I always wonder – are
they still required to help carry gear in and out of the club?  I hope they at least help the drummer out, he’s got so much
damn shit to haul.  I’m not even sure where to begin with the bassist – it was like a spaghetti western extra collided with
a Madchester-era raver, but goddamn he did a fine job on those four strings.  The guitarist saw how high Ian Williams
plays his instrument with Don Caballero/Battles, and decided to literally take it up a notch (he was also super talented,
for the record).  Drummers are always weird so need to dwell there.    Their songs are catchy and enjoyable as they
are, but given the genre the hooks could use just a touch of work – maybe Robert Pollard needs to offer weekend
workshops to up-and-coming bands to help write a chorus that turns into an ear worm.  They were still a damn fine
group though, and I would definitely see them again – and not just because I would want to see what the bassist was


"I can say I definitely didn't do it because I know what I did or didn't do. But I cannot definitely say that about anybody
else, 'cause I don't definitely know."

As I am occasionally want to do, I made myself a mix of classic punk singles.  And as typically happens, at some point
later I post a subset of those punk singles here.  
Menace - Electrocutioner
Sham 69 - Borstal Breakout
The Art Attacks - I Am a Dalek
The Cigarettes - They're Back Again, Here They Come
The Misfits - Attitude
The Saints - This Perfect Day
The Scabs - Amory Building
Xpress - Stop, Start (And Go Back Again)

Aimee Mann - Going Through The Motions.  For years the only Aimee Mann I knew was the "Magnolia" soundtrack
(though I know it very, very well), but of course pretty much everything she has recorded is great and I'm stupid for tak-
ing so long to dig into her catalog.  
King Of The Jailhouse
That's How I Knew This Story Would Break My Heart

Ramones - I Just Want To Have Something To Do.  Hey, more classic punk!  I hear these guys are going to do
great things.  
I Wanna Be Sedated
She's The One

The Mary Onettes - Love's Taking Strange Ways.  Fuck your Abba, this is the greatest band Sweden has ever
Silence Is A Gun
Your Place

TV On The Radio - Tonight.  TVotR were always better live than recorded, but that's not to say the recordings don't
have their charms.  
Wolf Like Me

Whatever Brains - Conficker.  The demise of WB is still the greatest cultural loss of the Triangle of the last decade.  

***March Thirty First Two Thousand and Nineteen***   

Spring is officially here - I hope everyone has prepared accordingly.  


Instagrams -

I hope their first dog is a masculine dog.  Cary, NC.  

Old town is old.  Charleston, SC.  

Shout at the devil.  Cary, NC.  

The clientele matched the sign.  Florence, SC.  


Movies -

Best of the month: Minding The Gap (2018)
Worst of the month: Little Italy (2018)
Even as a grownup this is still funny as shit: Monty Python And The Holy Grail (1975)
What if "Stranger Things" was about a serial killer instead? Summer Of 84 (2018)
Could have used more gunfire: Gauntlet (1977)
Most unbelievable fight scene of the month: John Cusack vs. Jackie Chan in Dragon Blade (2015)
Lifetime achievement in boner music: Teddy Pendergrass: If You Don’t Know Me (2018)
I don't think these guys are really as old as they appear: Uncle Drew (2018)

The rest:
Bird Box (2018), Eighth Grade (2018), Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018), Beatles: Eight Days A Week-The Touring
Years (2016), Dumb: The Story Of Big Brother Magazine (2017), Abducted In Plain Sight (2017), BlacKkKlansman
(2018), Brexit (2019), Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World (2017), Hale County This Morning, This Evening
(2018), United Skates (2018), Dave (1993), Ray Romano: Right Here, Around The Corner (2019), Three Identical
Strangers (2018)


Links -

Crailtap may not have the cache in the skate world they once did, but they still manage to find some incredible rippers
to rep their brands.  James Capps drops this part called "Homage" for their show brand Lakai.  

This Control Room vid has just about every rider from Habitat and Alien Workshop, and all of them kill, but the top
draw is Silas Baxter Neal dropping one of the best parts he's ever released.  

The music reviews have gone nearly barren...I've got a metric shitload I need to write though.          

A couple of photo journal entries, one of band photos and one of a couple of mini-sets: a trip to see Thomas the
Tank Engine and the yearly visit to the State Fair.


"Hey, listen, I want somebody good - and I mean very good - to plant that gun. I don't want my brother coming out of
that toilet with just his dick in his hands, alright?"

No explanation needed for most of these classics, and I'm too lazy to write them anyways.  

Fad Gadget
State of the Nation

Iron Maiden
2 Minutes To Midnight
Aces High
Rime Of The Ancient Mariner

Matthew Sweet
Dead Smile
Morning Song
The Ocean In-Between

Roxy Music
More Than This
Over You
Virginia Plain

Thin Lizzy
The Boys Are Back In Town

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
Angel Dream
Asshole (Beck cover)
Walls (Circus)

Van Morrison
Call Me Up In Dreamland
If I Ever Needed Someone

***February Twenty Eighth Two Thousand and Nineteen***   

I feel like maybe this guy should learn to be a little more careful with his sword.  


Instagram -

The kid and the dog.  Cary, NC.  

Neighbor cat being neighborly.  Cary, NC.  

New Hope Valley Railway.  New Hope, NC.    

Emerald tree boa.  Raleigh, NC.  

Western lowland gorilla.  Asheboro, NC.  


Best Shows of 2018!
I forgot to make this list earlier in the year.  Whatever.  In alphabetical order, though Baroness was also my favorite.
Jenny Lewis was probably number two.  After that, the order would probably depend on my mood.

Baroness (Carolina Rebellion), Charlotte Motor Speedway, 5/6/2018
(Photo from an older show, I didn't have my camera at this festival.)

Bat Fangs & Pipe, Cat’s Cradle Back Room, 2/3/2018

Built To Spill & The Afghan Whigs, Cat’s Cradle, 4/28/2018
from an older show, I didn't have my camera at this gig.)

Yonatan Gat, Hopscotch Music Festival (Day Three), 9/6/2018

Jenny Lewis, North Carolina Museum of Art, 8/1/2018
(I've never taken a photo of her and that is a goddamn travesty.)

Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, Cat’s Cradle, 6/19/2018

Psychic TV, Moogfest (Day 3), 5/19/2018

The Sea And Cake, The Pinhook, 5/20/2018

Tracyanne & Danny, Motorco, 6/15/2018

Wye Oak, Ponysaurus Brewing, 10/20/2018


Links -

If given magical powers I've said for a long time that Brandon Westgate is who I would wish I could skate like, and
nothing about this new NB Numeric part would make me change my mind.  Much clean, so pop.  

A combo part from Transworld featuring Zack Wallin & Vincent Alvarez - Zack is incredibly good, but the story for
me is always going to be Vincent, who has one of the top 5 best styles in skateboarding.  

This Evan Smith part for Element from their War an Peace series just has to be seen to be believed.  Dude
does tricks I literally didn't think was possible.  No matter how good he is I continue to find his hair distracting though.  

Chris Haslam is still fuckin' killing it.  No sponsors?  Who cares, put out a banger anyways.  

Matt Tomasello  = Tim and Eric (skateboarding, not Adult Swim) + Gou Miyagi + old school Welcome.  Lest that
description scares you off, he fucking rips and here is the proof from Fancy Lad.  

I posted a few new music reviews since the last time I posted there were new music reviews.        

No photo journal updates and I have a fuckload of photos I need to edit.


Movies -

Even though I'm technically not trying to watch at least one movie per day in 2019, I liked keeping track of what I
watched anyways so I'm going to keep up with that.  And I still managed to see 28 in January anyways...

Best of the month (new): Sicario: Day Of The Soldado (2018)
Best of the month (previously seen): Godfather (1972)
Worst of the month: Cellular (2004)
Best stand-up of the month: Ron Funches: Giggle Fit (2019)
I'm not crying, you're crying: Survivors (2018)
Inspector Gadget award: Shamus (1973) (tie: bed/pool table combo & phone in a basket you lower from the ceiling)
Best performance from a Real Housewife: Kim Richards in Tuff Turf (1985)
Best ensemble cast in a stupid movie: Tag (2018)
It all started with bootleg DVD players: Fast And The Furious (2001)

The rest:
Mission: Impossible II (2000), Anthropoid (2016), American Dream/American Knightmare (2015), Love Gilda (2018),
Trevor Noah: Son Of Patricia (2018), Life Of The Party (2018), My Country No More (2018), James Davis: Live From
The Town (2019), Clerks (1994), Ocean’s 8 (2018), Rodents Of Unusual Size (2017), Chris Destefano: Size 38 Waist
(2019), Buffalo Bill And The Indians, Or Sitting Bull’s History Lesson (1976), Roy Wood Jr: No One Loves You (2019),
Slow West (2015), Porndemic (2016), Allman Brothers Band: After The Crash (2016), Jeff Beck: Still On The Run
(2018), Struggle: The Life And Lost Art Of Szukalski (2018)


With Enemy Waves

I can blame it on the winter or maybe even my rapidly advancing age, but the end result is I’ve barely gone to any
shows these past few months.  One thing I never, ever miss though – Bandway.  They’ve only played 3-4 times over
the past decade, what with the duo busy being psychiatrists and cabinet makers and such, so it’s always a goddamn
joyous occasion when they take the stage for a night of sing-alongs and drunken revelry.  Anyone showing up to a
Bandway show in 2019 is almost always already as big a fan as I am, and likely just as old - I’m sure a number of
babysitters got paid this evening.  Their set sampled their entire career, but possibly the most noteworthy item is they
actually had a new song called “Sprinkles” that included lines such as “I love my pussy with wrinkles” and “my hang
down has the drippies.”  Brooks commented after that they actually have a new record coming out…as soon as they
write the rest of the songs for the album.  The sing-along highlights of the night were two obvious ones – “King Kong”
and “Four Day Weekend” – wherein the crowd was possibly even louder than the band.  Shockingly not included was
“Balls Out,” a minor grievance on an otherwise stellar night.  I’m super excited to see them again in two or three more
years, and to hear that new album in 2030.

Finding an opener for Bandway is no easy task – few can measure up to their particular brand of nonsense.  Given
that, Kings honcho Paul Siler just threw himself on the bill with one of his bands Enemy Waves, because why not.  I
hadn’t seen them in a while, but I really liked the direction of their new tunes – particularly the last one of the first part of
their set, which had this strong Mdou Moctar/Tuareg-style guitar line all the way through it that had me mesmerized. 
After that, just for shits and giggles apparently, the entire band put on fake beards and then proceeded to play three
ZZ Top songs – including the two chart toppers “Sharp Dressed Man” and “Gimme All Your Lovin’.”  Something you
rarely see addressed with your more prominent ZZ Top cover bands: how do you play guitar solos when your fake
beard is draped all over the neck and strings?  It’s a real conundrum in this day and age, one hopefully the nation’s
leading scientists can tackle in the coming decades.

It should also be noted, for reasons unclear to everyone (including the people involved): between the two bands local
man-about-town Trent Bowles took the stage, dressed in a Super Dave-type outfit, and proceeded to ride an electric
scooter (stolen off the street) off of a terrible make-shift ramp directly into the far wall.  The result was as expected –
he collapsed into the ground, cursed a lot, and then freaked out and start throwing things all over the stage (the ramp
went through the drywall more than once).  Like most pranks of this ilk it was 2/3rds funny and 1/3rd went on for too


"Cunnilingus and psychiatry brought us to this."

6 String Drag - Every Time She Walks On By.  The name might sound alt-country and the band might even look alt-
country, but the music is pure early Elvis Costello-esque pop.  A favorite from 2018.  
Let's Fool Around Til The End Of The World
Small Town Punks

Courtney Barnett - Charity.  Everyone knows Courtney at this point.  No words needed.  One of the few modern
artists that are really popular that I actually like.  
Need A Little Time

Here's a bunch of power pop perfection from the Incredible Kidda Band, the best band way too few people have
ever heard of.  
Can I Take The Car Tonight
Fighting My Way Back
Got To Keep The Noise Turned Down
I Want You
I'm Gonna Join The Army
Saturday Night Fever

Public Image Ltd - Brave New World.  I've been listening to PIL off and on for three decades now and I'm still not
sure if I like them...but I keep going back and trying, so that says something I guess.  

The La's - There She Goes.  One of the greatest pop songs of all time.  Top 10 probably.  
Timeless Melody

The Love Language - Lalita.  The first Love Language record is still the gold standard for the band.  

The Thrills - Big Sur.  This one got a LOT of play in the early oughts, but it had been a while.  A recent re-visit re-
minded me that (a) it's still really damn good and (b) they were really obsessed with California.  
One Horse Town

***January Seventeenth Two Thousand and Nineteen***   

Best Movies of 2018!
Obviously, I'm not a movie reviewer, and I also rarely go to the theater, so I missed a ton of the hot-shit award worthy
flicks that usually make these lists.  Still, I watched a shit ton of movies, and these were my favorites from this year.

1.   Roma
2.   Won’t You Be My Neighbor
3.   Widows
4.   Ballad Of Buster Scruggs
5.   Black Panther
6.   Avengers: Infinity War
7.   Isle Of Dogs
8.   Death Of Stalin
9.   Mandy
10. Annihilation

Best Movies of 2017! (...that I didn't see until 2018.)
Like I said above, a lot of movies don't get seen in a timely fashion.  The first two here would for sure have made my
top ten last year had I seen them in time.

1.   Deadpool 2
2.   Blade Runner 2049
3.   Logan Lucky
4.   War for the Planet of the Apes
5.   Wind River
6.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2
7.   It
8.   The Post
9.   The Foreigner
10. Pork Pie

Best Movies...of All the Other Years!
 (...that I also didn't see until 2018.)
Holy shit balls, Threads seriously fucked me up.  That movie is INTENSE.

1. Threads (1984)
2. God Knows Where I Am (2016)
3. A Man Escaped (1956)
4. Eye In The Sky (2016)
5. Never Too Young To Die (1986)

Best Stand-Up of 2018!
Got to see Mulaney perform pretty much his entire special live right before it came out, and it might be the funniest
stand-up I've ever seen.  

1. John Mulaney: Kid Gorgeous At Radio City
2. Ali Wong: Hard Knock Wife
3. Demitri Martin: The Overthinker
4. Sam Morril: Positive Influence
5. Flight Of The Conchords: Live In London

Best Documentaries of 2018!
I don't feel like this needs an explanation.  Everyone should definitely see "This Is Congo" though.  

1. This Is Congo
2. Zen Diaries Of Garry Shandling
3. It Will Be Chaos
4. Jane Fonda In Five Acts 
5. Quincy

Worst Movies I Unfortunately Watched in 2018!
I avoided MST3K films for the most part, but Ator was so bad I couldn't let it slide.  

1. Atlantic Rim (2013)
2. Ator The Fighting Eagle (1982)
3. Blues Brothers 2000 (1998)
4. Croc (2007)
5. Lady Psycho Killer (2015)


In my effort to watch 365 movies in 365 days, my final tally was 381.  Suck it, active social life!  I thought it might be
difficult, but I greatly underestimated how many movies I watch as a natural course of life.  There were only a few times
when I thought about needing to wath something towards this goal.  A few stats, just for shits and giggles.  

Count by year:
2018:  96
2017:  102
2010-2016:  51
2000-2009:  22
1990-1999:  30
1980-1989:  47
1970-1979:  20
1960-1969:  7
1950-1959:  3
1940-1949:  3

Count by genre:
Drama:  84
Doc:  80
Action:  42
Horror:  36
Comedy:  31
Stand-Up:  27
SciFi:  22
Music Doc:  16
Biopic:  15
Mystery:  12
Kids:  9
Superhero:  7

***December Twenty Fourth Two Thousand and Eighteen***   

Top 15 Records of 2018!!!

I don't think this needs any explanation.  Enjoy the free musics.  

Idles - Joy As An Act Of Resistance (Partisan)
The musical comps for Idles are surprisingly easy – bits of Les Savy Fav, Protomartyr, Fucked Up, and Birthday Party
are all easy touchstones here.  What takes this up a notch is it’s energy and positive earnestness – “fuck the fascists”
and “love everybody” are the universal themes, themes that seem especially important these days.
Danny Nedelko
I'm Scum

Superchunk - What A Time To Be Alive (Merge)
You'll never believe it, but it is my opinion that this record rules.  RULES!!!  The crib notes are: everything is fucked, it's
time to burn the motherfucker down and let a better class of people (aka not old rich white people) try again. 
Bad Choices
What A Time To Be Alive

Hot Snakes - Jericho Sirens (Sub Pop)
This entire new album sounds so much like their first three releases that if you didn’t know better, you could easily
assume it was just something they had in the can from years ago that they just got around to releasing now. That's a
good thing, for the record.  
Death Camp Fantasy
Six Wave Hold-Down

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever - Hope Downs (Sub Pop)
The name is so ridiculous I almost didn't give them a chance, which would have been a shame - there might not be a
better band performing right now that sounds this breezy and effortless and most importanly, real damn catchy.  
Talking Straight
The Hammer

Bat Fangs - Bat Fangs (Don Giovanni)
Guitar heavy in that glam metal way (without all the pomp and cheesiness), combined with the late seventies power
pop of Cheap Trick or 20/20 or Shivvers.  It’s a combination that’s worked for decades, and Bat Fangs are doing it
as well as anyone right out of the gate.   
Boy of Summer
Turn It Up

Spiritualized - And Nothing Hurt (Fat Possum)
It’s right there in the bible, clear as day – “and on the seventh day, god told Jason Pierce to stop dicking around and
release a new friggin' Spiritualized record already, because he needed some new jams what with all the laying
around on clouds he had planned.”
A Perfect Miracle
I'm Your Man

Wye Oak - The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs (Merge)
It sounds pretty much just like the last couple of Wye Oak records, and that's fine. This band has a sound and they’re
sticking with it, and that is a-ok with me.  
It Was Not Natural
Say Hello

Eric Bachmann - No Recover (Merge)
Bachmann’s output is stripped down and simple without being simplistic, catchy without being cloying.  Sure, I’m
coming at this as a fanboy who loves every goddamn thing this man touches, but even within that framework I’m telling
you this is an exceptional collection of Bachmann’s work.
Murmuration Song

Spider Bags - Someday Everything Will Be Fine (Merge)
There’s not really anyone else around here doing exactly what they do, a hybrid of punk and garage and country that
over the years, at their best, is a blend of the Replacements, Meat Puppets and James Gang.
Oxcart Blues

Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks - Sparkle Hard (Matador)
While still operating in the well-established pocket Malkmus has created for himself these past few decades, “Sparkle
Hard” feels…mellower, more mature even?  In this case ”mature” really just means there are some strings and not as
many guitar solos and one song sounds a little country.
Solid Silk

Tommy And The Commies - Here Come… (Slovenly)
Sounds pretty much just like the Buzzcocks.  Sometimes a slightly mod Buzzcocks, but still the comparison holds.  And
that’s fine, because I love the Buzzcocks, and not enough bands do the catchy, upbeat buzzsaw punk thing for my liking.
Permanent Fixture

The Sea And Cake - Any Day (Thrill Jockey)
The long break between albums might have reset the group back to their early years stylistically – the electronic/synth
elements that had been infiltrating their songs over the past 10-15 years is almost totally gone, giving us an album that
sounds like it could be the companion of 1995’s “The Biz.”
Cover the Mountain
I Should Care

Cold Cream - Cold Cream (Self-Released)
It’s impossible to ignore the Flesh Wounds comparisons, as both bands definitely have a somewhat similar sound, but
this feels…more fun than Flesh Wounds maybe?  Looser, more adventurous, crazier lyrics – Flesh Wounds always felt
so angry and serious...
Eichmann In Jeruselum
See You On The Somme

The Rock*A*Teens - Sixth House (Merge)
Two decades later, after a lengthy hiatus, have the Rock*A*Teens changed?  Honestly, not really – a little more mature
I guess, and a little less noisy, but they’re still doing the same southern, jangly indie pop that’s the musical equivalent
to a humid southern night. 
Closest to Heaven
Go Tell Everybody

Tracyanne & Danny - Tracyanne & Danny (Merge)
The musical equivalent of purring cat in your lap on a cozy Sunday afternoon. It isn’t terribly different from the sixties
twee vibes of Camera Obscura in their later years…just with more male vocals really. I would probably buy a record
of Tracyanne singing CSPAN transcripts.
It Can't Be Love Unless It Hurts

Honorable Mentions (In alphabetical order, with a few MP3s that I had readily available)

Author & Punisher - Beastland (Relapse)

Courtney Barnett - Tell Me How You Really Feel (Mom + Pop)
Damien Jurado - The Horizon Just Laughed (Secretly Canadian)
H.C. McEntire - Lionheart (Merge)
Honey Bucket - Furniture Days (See My Friends)
J Mascis - Elastic Days (Sub Pop)
The Jayhawks - Back Roads And Abandoned Motels (Legacy)
Jeff Tweedy – Warm (dBpm)
Mind Spiders - Furies (Dirtnap)
No Ground
Nest Egg - Nothingness Is Not A Curse (Fuzz Club)

Denied Doctrine
No Sister - The Second Floor (Self-Released)

You Know The Feeling?
Salad Boys - This Is Glue (Trouble In Mind)

Choking Sick
Psych Slasher 
Shannon Shaw - Shannon In Nashville (Easy Eye Sound / Nonesuch)
6 String Drag - Top Of The World (Schoolkids)
A Storm Of Light – Anthroscene (Translation Loss)

Best Comps/Live Albums/Singles
(In alphabetical order, with a few MP3s that I had readily available)

David Bowie ‎– Welcome To The Blackout (Live London '78) (Parlophone)

Guided By Voices - Ogre’s Trumpet (Guided By Voices)
The Mary Onettes - Cola Falls (Cascine)
 - Cola Falls
The Number Ones - Another Side Of The Number Ones 7’’ (Sorry State)
 - Lie To Me
Nocturnal Projections - Complete Studio Recordings (Dais)
 - In Purgatory
 - Isn't That Strange
The Revelons: '77​-​'82 (Numero Group)
 - 97 Tears
 - Brighter Side


Archive -
December 2018        November 2018        October 2018        September 2018        August 2018        July 2018
June 2018             May 2018             April 2018             March 2018             February 2018             January 2018

December 2017        November 2017        October 2017        September 2017        August 2017        July 2017
June 2017             May 2017             April 2017             March 2017             February 2017             January 2017

December 2016        November 2016        October 2016        September 2016        August 2016        July 2016
June 2016             May 2016             April 2016             March 2016             February 2016             January 2016

December 2015        November 2015        October 2015        September 2015        August 2015        July 2015
June 2015             May 2015             April 2015             March 2015             February 2015             January 2015

December 2014        November 2014        October 2014        September 2014        August 2014        July 2014
June 2014             May 2014             April 2014             March 2014             February 2014             January 2014

December 2013        November 2013        October 2013        September 2013        August 2013        July 2013               
June 2013             May 2013
            April 2013             March 2013             February 2013             January 2013

December 2012        November 2012        October 2012        September 2012        August 2012        July 2012                
June 2012             May 2012
           April 2012              March 2012            February 2012              January 2012

December 2011        November 2011        October 2011       September 2011         August 2011        July 2011                 
June 2011             May 2011
           April 2011              March 2011            February 2011              January 2011

December 2010        November 2010        October 2010       September 2010         August 2010        July 2010                  
June 2010             May 2010
           April 2010              March 2010            February 2010              January 2010

December 2009        November 2009        October 2009       September 2009         August 2009        July 2009                   
June 2009    
         May 2009            April 2009              March 2009            February 2009              January 2009

December 2008        November 2008        October 2008       September 2008         August 2008        July 2008                   
June 2008  
           May 2008            April 2008              March 2008            February 2008              January 2008

December 2007        November 2007        October 2007       September 2007         August 2007        July 2007                    
June 2007    
         May 2007            April 2007              March 2007            February 2007              January 2007
December 2006  
      November 2006        October 2006       September 2006         August 2006        July 2006                    
June 2006  
          May 2006            April 2006              March 2006            February 2006              January 2006
December 2005  
      November 2005        October 2005       September 2005         August 2005        July 2005                    
June 2005  
          May 2005            April 2005              March 2005            February 2005              January 2005         
December 2004 
       November 2004       October 2004        September 2004