Monthly Archive for September, 2003

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Records That Changed My Life, Part II

iheartrichardkern (11k image)Records that changed my life, in one way or another (1993-1995) | Part II :

– Sonic Youth’s dirty: While it’s not really a favorite among Sonic Youth fans and in retrospect it’s hardly my favorite record, but this is the record that got me in to them. I hadnt really heard much about them up until then. Other than they were from NY and played weird shit with guitars. Theresa’s Sound-World was the song that did it for me. Steve Shelly’s toms were golden. The ‘verbs were devine and i was hooked. It was also a Butch Vig production. Later in my Sonic Youth quest i found there were much more inviting and interesting records: Confusion is Sex, Daydream Nation, Sister. Then of course i started getting in to Richard Kern and his non-traditional photography. And like Fugazi this band has two main singers and Kim sings from time to time. I never realized that Lee sang. It’s funny how people’s perceptions are of bands prior to seeing them perform life and/or seeing pictures of them. And i also always thought that Thurston did all the crazy noise stuff. Little did I know. I still think to this day that they should have toured with the Dead.

Nine Inch Nails’ the downward spiral: I am not really in to the goth music and never ever was. In fact I felt free to make fun of those people. This record took a while for me to get in to. However, i instanly liked the smell of it. Certain liner notes have smelled really good to me over the ages. Another liner notes that I can recall off hand was Motley Crue’s dr feelgood. How I remember that is beyond me. I, of course, was a huge fan since Pretty Hate Machine came out. It was just angry techno to me with cheesy lyrics. And listening to that record now, the lyrics are even that much more cheesy. Almost unlistenable. But hell, he sampled Jane’s and Prince in the same song. So that is the redeeming factor over the ages for me. Anways… Then I found Broken and Fixed and it hurt my ears in such a good way. Remixes started turning me on at this point. And Bob Flanagan entered the picture. So this new Nine Inch Nails record was one of the first records I got in to via the headphones. You hear things with headphones you dont hear with standard speakers. It’s uncanny and amazing and breathtaking sometimes. Trent layered so incredibly well on this record. His guitars and synths were painful to listen to as they were played and placed with such perfection. Yes, and outside of melody and rhythm.

Soul Coughing’s ruby vroom: I heard of this band from the same friend that got me in to Jane’s Addiction. His older brother got hold of this cd at the radio station and i copied a few cuts on to a cassette. Jordan had one of those CD player changers that was a cartridge. I hated those things. Get a single well or a carosel! Castiotone Nation, Moon Sammy and a few others made it to the tape. I was mezmorized. The wicked drums. The DRUMS The DRUMS! And the singer was pretty damn cool. I recall Jordan emailing with the singer. The singer was trying to convince Jordan to print out the emails going back and forth and smoke them. Maybe he was doing this himself. Cos that shit was wacked. Then i started talking with those guys and eventually did one of their fan sites for Warner Bros. Records. And a friend of mine started dating the singer. She even made it in to a few lyrics on a later album and a few soundtrack songs. Those were good times. Strange and surreal. But good times. in an off-white honda

And up until this point I still hadnt owned a CD player…

Records That Changed My Life, Part I

crickets (6k image)Records that changed my life, in one way or another (1984-1992):

1984 – I was 7. I saved up my allowance (25 cents a week) all year to purchase Bruce Springsteen’s born in the usa on Cassette. I bought it with my Mother at Waxie Maxies in the mall right near JC Penny. I memorize all the lyrics. Verbatim and with NJ dialect. I was hooked on rock and roll forever. The Boss was the man.

1985-1986 – I didnt really have a particular taste in music at this point. I mean I listened to music but no bands outside of the Beatles and The Stones and Ray Charles and Joni Mitchell (bands by Parents listened to) stick out… I was a radio slut at this point. Casey Casem on Sunday mornings with my tape deck at +3db like my Father taught me; ready to record. “Just a bit in the red, but not too much.” I made Top 40 mix tapes by month. I still have a few.

– Jane’s Addiction: The fist Jane’s I heard was Nothing’s Shocking. My friend Jordan got all the best and newest music from his older brother who had a radio show at some college station. Maybe U of Maryland. I heard the first yelp of “THREE – FOUR” in the 2nd cut, Ocean Size and I was hooked. Lyrics that really made no sense yet talked about sex, drugs and rock & roll were amazing and mezmorizing to me. There was an incredible mystery about this band. And the drums were gigantic. Steven Perkins made me decide to play the drums. Jordan told me there was this super computer that processed Perry’s vocals. Later in my career in music production i realized he was quite full of shit. Then shortly after “Ritual de lo Habitual” came out and the rest is history. Three Days was meant to give orgasms.

– Fugazi’s repeater: These guys were local. Local heros who were accessable and did it themselves. Very inspiring for a poor kid from the suburbs who was 14 and impressionable just like everyone. I got this on a tape on the A Side. The B side had Shutter To Think’s ten spot. I was forever changed with local indie music. I had never heard music this real and strange.

– Smashing Pumpkin’s gish: I went away to summer camp. It was a music camp. I borrowed this tape of Karin’s. Side A was Gish and the Side B was some Sex Pistols record. I listened to Side B trying to see what the deal was with them… I never got the Sex Pistols and to this day I still do not. Needless to say, Gish was amazing. It was music for people who could cry and a bit more. This probably fed part of my teenage ridden angst and sadness. I was learning drums at this point and went to my summer drum teacher, Josh and said, “I want to play this entire record.” By the end of the 6 weeks and 10 hour days of practicing I had mastered it. Sans the wacked out solo in Snail, but that was not my concern. I was so proud of those calousess. I think I still have this tape in my parent’s basement. I remember it was a Sony Type II tape that was green and I played it in my yellow walkman I stole from some schmuck. Maybe I was the schmuck. Then Siamese Dream came out a year later and they were giants. I remember listening to Hummer in my basement. After the arsenal of guitars come in I heard a sound that sounded like crickets up in the upper sound register… It had to be a keyboard. I messed with the keyboard that was in the basement from the band i was in at the time, Undertow. I couldnt get the right sound. It was impossible. I later found out from the guitarist in the band that sound I was hearing was the effect of guitar fuzz. This is when I wanted I decided I wanted to produce and engineer like Butch Vig.

To be continued…

lamb til the clouds clear

piezo tweeters rule - k15 (15k image)1.Make up a name for yourself: matork
2.Where were you born? washington dc
3.And when was this? 12jan.
4.What are you parents names? francine & neil.
5.What is your favourite sexual position? the same as yours.

Morning. . .
1.What’s your favourite breakfast cereal? lucky charms & whole foods kids
2.What’s the first thing you do upon waking? turn off my cell ringer
3. Coffee or Orange Juice? if from waffle house, coffee
4. Stop to smell the roses or rush to work/school? stop to watch the people.
5. What is your morning bathroom routine? bronner’s in the shower
6. Morning breath? no thanks.
7. Toast or pop tart? neither.
8. Sex in the morning or at night? either.
9. Do you have normal sleeping habits? i try.
10. How many hours of sleep you average? 7-8.
11. Get on the Internet before work/school? duh, i am addicted.
12. Change your underwear regularly? daily.
3. Sing in the shower? when i can.
14. Flex in the mirror? funny.
15. Butter or Margarine? margarine.

Noon. . .
1. What your favourite fast food place? subway?
2. Take out, drive thru, or eat in? delivery.
3. Bring your lunch or eat from a vending machine? bring!
4. Eat in a group or alone? group.
5. Would you like fries with that? i like cookies.
6. Gossip? only if it’s good.
7. Do you brush your teeth after every meal? no, i like my enamel
8. Chew Trident? no, contains lactose.
9. Are you eating anything right now? no.
10. Ever had a, how you say, nooner? i cannot deny this.
11. Favourite TV Dinner: amy’s!
12. Favourite Candy Bar: whatchamacallits!
13. Favourite chewing gum: bazooka.
14. Does loud chewing bother you? very much so.
15. Do you talk with your mouth full? not often.

And Night. . .
1. What is your favourite sleeping position? tummy or side.
2. Do you dream in colour or black and white? i dream in 3d
3. Do you sleep alone? not often.
4. Have you ever been in a bar? sure.
5. How about a gay bar? sure.
6. Do you drink? liquids make the world go ’round
7. Do you drink and drive? i pee first.
8. How about drugs, do you do those? no sir.
9. Do you carry condoms? i got a pack of 100 from my mother when she dropped me off at college
10. Name something stupid you’ve done while drunk: i dont get drunk.
11. Tell me a recent dream: i played theremin with prince, i think to irresistible bitch
12. What are you doing next Saturday night? camping
13. Will you marry me? er?
14. What do you sleep in? boxers and socks.
15. Kiss and tell? doubtful.