Sunday, December 16, 2007

Angelo Madrigale

Angelo Madrigale (Curator of Lancaster, PA's Metropolis Gallery)
Top Reissues Of 2008

So my wife and I own this gallery together and we're too old and busy and angry to listen to new music. Also, the new music that people are excited about appears to be Vampire Weekend and I heard it and it sounds just like Paul Simon's "Graceland," and even though I know that's a really easy cheap shot, I feel that it is 1. correct and 2. reason enough to dismiss new music. Partly because we've both seen Ladysmith Black Mambazo in concert, back in the day - before the one guy was assassinated in Africa. So there. Sure, all of the preceding statements are petty and simplistic and mean, but we've worked hard to get this bitter. 

Truthfully, we put a combined 25 years into music retail at many, many prominent indie record stores before opening this gallery, and there's a certain pleasure we both take from being blissfully ignorant of current music. Did you know two of our all-time favorite bands, The Fall and Stereolab both released new studio recordings in 2008? We didn't - until we tried to make this list. Hey, maybe we'll come around. Maybe we'll continue to be jerks. In the meantime, here's a list of old crap that got reissued in 2008 that we like a lot. 

Reissues in 2008 in no specific order: 

1. Tubeway Army "Replica's Redux"

At his best, Gary Numan was able to channel Bowie glam-punk through cold, digital Kraftwerk-style synth-rock. He also bummed out a lot of ’80s hicks who had to listen to "Cars" on their local rock radio while wishing their call-in request for Deep Purple's "Woman From Tokyo" would get played before they had to start their shift at the screen door factory.

2. MF Doom "Operation Doomsday"

His first, not his best. Pop-culture-sampling hip-hop, which is really fun and is somewhat comparable to a less mentally handicapped Kool Keith.

3. BDP "Criminal Minded"

In the days of "tell it like it is" political TV punditry, I find myself wondering how lame, dull blowhards like Glenn Beck got a cable show while KRS-One is relegated to yelling crazier and way more inflammatory conspiracy theories on some street corner.

4. Cluster "Sowiesoso"

Two European creeps with too many synthesizers and a lot of acid. I know, but this was back when that wasn't a boring idea. Sounds like music made by your "Pong" console.

5. Funkadelic "Maggot Brain"

You know how rap albums nowadays that aren't any good take samples from other (usually also rap) albums that also weren't all that good? Well, it used to be that the mark of quality in early hip-hop was deftly sampling Funkadelic. A good example is NWA.

6. Velvet Underground And Nico

Reissued for the zillionth time, this one is an obvious pick. Music made by people on heroin is generally great music.

7. Sunn O))) "OO Void"

This has a bonus disc of remixes by Nurse with Wound. Cool, now the guy in your dorm building who wears leather lace-up pants, does hash and blows his grant money on Muslimgauze imports can get into this.

8. Mission Of Burma "Signals, Calls And Marches"

Kinda like Television in that almost everyone that likes them was born at least ten years after their records were originally released, but different because they're just obscure enough that The Strokes can't rip them off.

9. Love "Forever Changes"

Arthur Lee of Love discovered The Doors (which I forgive him for) and also did a ton of drugs and (I think) pulled some guns on some people. I am sure they had it coming.

10. Blood Duster "Str8outtanorthcote"

Weirdo XXX-rated death metal from Australia or New Zealand or somewhere. Funnier than GG Allin at times, though less funny than Deicide, but not for lack of trying. An aunt of one of the band members plays a Hammond B3 overtop of blast beats, which rules. I like that they remembered to represent the humorous side of Satanism.

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