Thursday, January 03, 2008

Bill Dolan and Primitive Sound System - D.C.'s Tavern Thursday January 3rd from 9PM to Closing

Hello Y'all,
Well, Happy Fuckin' New Year! This Thursday is the one you are always waiting for, that's right... MISERABLY cold and three knuckle-heads spinning their personal favorites. Lucky for you all I won't bore you all with a "Best Of 2007" list. I can never pare it down like that anyway. Plus with stuff like the Thrill Jockey "Plum" box set coming out in the middle of December and the brilliant Raw Wax label rounding out an already amazing year with a new one from Javier R. Rodrigez why would I even try. Two tastes that taste great together, vinyl & beer. See you there.

- pat.
Primitive Sound System, Thrill Jockey

I am still compiling all these emails here - "Audio Visual Triumphs and Disasters" -

Primitive Sound System, Bill Dolan and Joe Raaen
Thursday January 3rd 9PM to Closing
D.C.'s Tavern
505 8th Street
Between Jefferson and Madison
Hoboken, New Jersey
PH: 201-792-5550

The Records:
Plum - (15th Anniversary 200th release box set) (Thrill Jockey Records cat. THRILL 200)
I still get excited like a 4 year old on Christmas morning when it comes to records. I have a four year old so I can tell you that is pretty fucking exciting. I got an email from Thrill Jockey announcing the box and the proceeded to check their site everyday until it was released. Then I asked Santa for it and couldn't wait until Christmas morning. Well this was worth the excitement and the wait. The Box is adorned with the fuzzy image of a plum and the scrawled word plum in shaky script. Each sleeve has a selection of botanicals featuring plums. The usual suspects are all here inc Tortoise, Sea And Cake, Freakwater, Mouse On Mars, Califone, Pit Er Pat, etc, etc. All put in stellar performances and even in this tribute to their own label the bands push themselves and the boundaries a bit.

Javier R. Rodrigez - "Rumble" b/w "Up The Hill" (Raw-Wax Records cat. rw-008)
I have said it about a million times and I will say it again. A band is ONLY as good as their drummer. Time and time again this is true. If the drummer is not as good or at least a cut above the other players the band suffers. The drummer gracing the throne on this mad piece of Modern Funk is just explosive and tight as a duck's ass. He is kicking hard and putting back, shoulders and wrists into every hit. "LET'S GET READY TO...RUMBLE!" There is beautifully thought out percussion throughout that compliments every stroke the drummer takes. BUT, but, but let's not take a way from the rest of the folks giving it there all. The organ stabs, slides and pushes through the whole song sometimes sounding like the theme to a Spaghetti Western and at others the soundtrack to a Space adventure. The bass is moving and solid. With all the wonderful sounds and shifts going on around it, the bass holds everything together with expressive heavy notes and perfect little pauses that hang there allowing a beat or two to jump out and pin your shoulders back. The guitar tosses off super clean rhythmic jabs but then also covers everything up with wild amounts of fuzz and some crazy effects making the guitar sound like a clavinet. No need to ask because you already know the answer... YES, there is a cow bell and a beat heavy break. It is anything but a struggle to get "Up the Hill". The beauty of this single is that if you heard 50 tracks from this genre you would be able to spot the Javier R. Rodrigez tracks. There is a certain quality to the tracks and especially the way the drums are handled. Have you ever played with the balance while listening to Edwin Starr's "25 Miles?" If you have never done this and have the 7-inch I'll wait while you try.... Back? Pretty cool right? There is a similar sound to these tracks. The drums don't necessarily live in one channel or the other but there is a sense that the drums are offset from the band. Not so much as to be "out front" but just off to the side and allowed to really go for it and stretch out. The band really seems to enjoy playing with each other and on this track each musician compliments the others quite nicely. The drums lead the charge but this time the keyboards and bass grab equal amounts of space. The keys have the same spooky soundtrack meets lounge scene sound they had on the first side but they are always downright solid and Funky. The composition is nicely varied and allows the players to display their abilities. Woe, woe, woe what the hell is this! There is the most INCREDIBLE simple vibe pattern about half way through. The band takes the pace up to double time and the vibes drop gears and take it extremely slow. Echoey and masterfully handled but weirdly amateurish and the same time. Simple beauty? Child-like innocence? This all has the effect of watching a simulation of a space craft in orbit. You know it is moving at 18,000 MPH but it looks like it is floating. Thank you Javier R. Rodrigez and Raw-Wax you have made me and my turntable very happy. Now leave me be as I load up the needle and get lost....