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Posts Tagged ‘Dinosaur Jr’

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Friend of the blog, Pol Plastino, joins the Modern Rock Countdown to help us get to know the Nanuqsaurus hoglundi.

Thanks Pol! – Go with yourself.

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Phoenix is massive. Dinosaur Jr always sounded massive.  It ,makes sense to have J Mascis wrap his guitar around “Entertainment.”

“What you want, what you do to me.”

Phoenix is in Vancouver on March 28th to perform at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.

“My brother David took me to see Dinosaur Jr. live in Paris around the time when [1991’s] Green Mind was released (…) I have been a fan since then.” Phoenix front guy Thomas Mars from SPIN.

And uhhh… J Mascis is putting out as purple shoe.

Go with yourself.

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Oh man, last night was terrible.  I must have been experiencing a bout of anxiety or something, but I had the stresses and could not sleep.  Hard to breathe, hot, tight chest…I couldn’t fall asleep till close to 4AM then Coral was waking me at 6:30 when she got up.  Just a long, miserable, lonely night.

But I did do two things before this panic set in.  I watched the film Young Adult and I downloaded Dinosaur Jr’s “Feel The Pain.”

The movie is about a 30-something writer (Charlize Theron) who comes back to the small Minnesota town where she grew up to try and win back her married high school sweetheart.

Tragic hilarity. I really enjoyed it.

The film is heavy on 90s nostalgia rock.  The de facto theme song is 1991’s Teenage Fanclub single “The Concept.”

Teenage Fanclub – “The Concept”

The song comes from the record Bandwagonesque which in 1991, beat out Nirvana‘s Nevermind in Spin Magazine as “Album of the Year.” Neat.

The movie takes place in Minnesota, so that means a Replacements‘ song.  “Achin To Be.”  Good pick.

AND, Dinosaur Jr‘s “Feel The Pain” dials in as well.

Dinosaur Jr – “Feel The Pain”

“Feel The Pain” was Dinosaur Jr’s biggest modern rock hit…. peaking at #4 in ’94. It is also the only Dinosaur song we have on the playlist at The Zone!

What’s especially neat about these two songs… “The Concept” and “Feel The Pain” is that Teenage Fanclub is/was often compared to Dinosaur Jr… and with these two songs, I think you can really hear some similarities.  Especially, when it comes to the guitar noodling.

OK, that’s all I got.  Its like noon right now, and I am so tired.  And still so much to do today and tonight.

Go with yourself.

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I am doing that #MarchPhotoADay thing on my twitter.  Good times.  Every day there is a theme and you take a picture about it.  Fun!

I have a couple songs for you today… two very different styles.

Lets get started talking about one of my favourite chill beat mongers, Four Tet. The UK producer and DJ teamed up with Burial for a song called “Nova.” The song will likely show up on Four Tet’s Text Records.

Burial + Four Tet – “Nova”

Download MP3 (low quality) >> Burial and Four Tet

This song kind of reminds of the grey days leading up to spring.  Spring is coming to Victoria, but ain’t here yet!  (heck there was a light dusting of snow the other day).

You got that signature Four Tet beat and the ghostly samples and glitches of Burial.  Basically everything about both performers I like, in one song.  I remember when Four Tet toured to Vancouver… and I think played at The Biltmore?  Oh man, it will forever be a shame that I didn’t rally to hit the show.  In my defense… he played on a February 24th… Madelyn’s birthday.  Just couldn’t do it.

I change gears for a record I read about the other day on Pitchfork.

The writer didn’t jive on the record, but in explaining their distaste they kinda sold me on the disc.  The group is called Mr. Dream and their EP is Fatherland.

The critique is that band sounded a bit like a second-rate 80s vintage Homestead Records band.  Sounds like my kind of band.

I started poking around the other day on Homestead because they are an important record label based out of New York for alternative music in the 80s.  They feature prominently in the lore of the time in outsider music.  Gerald Cosloy ran the label during a lot of important years and was instrumental in the early days of Dinosaur Jr.  Awesome.

It was Dinosaur Jr that inspired me to try and learn guitar… and to hear a band that borrows heavily from that era but is modern sounds exceptionally intriguing to me.

Poking around more, and Colsoy’s story intersects again… as he is a part-owner of today’s influential indie record label, Matador Records.  And then it just all makes sense.  matador is home (or was home) to a lot of bands that I love.  Namely Interpol (currently) and Spoon (formally).  But click the link and you’ll see a pretty select roster of bands.

Very cool.

Back to Mr. Dream, the band out of Brooklyn NYC… are a couple Pitchfork writers (which is funny, because Pitchfork ripped them)… which goes to show, judging music is easier than making it (or at least a very different skill set).

I like Mr. Dream… but mostly because I like the style and era they are trying to replicate.  And if I ever get half decent at guitar, might try for something similar (but with a Four Tet beat? haha)

Mr. Dream – “Fatherland”

Download MP3 >> Mr Dream – Fatherland

OK… Mr. Dream only has like a 1,000 something followers… so I need to get my band fired up fast so I can can offer SOMETHING and tour with them playing 80’s alt rock!

That’s all I got… I am off on a little holiday tomorrow and Friday… Coral is taking me to a Canucks game. We’ll eat street food, drink beers, maybe hit the Red Wagon… I might go for a soak in the hot tub at my sister’s place, and generally act like a tourist with 48 hours to cause trouble  Vancouver friends… if you’re downtown Thursday night…look for Hurricane Coral, I’ll be holding onto a lamp post or sturdy hipster near that!

See you at Veneto on Friday night.

Go with yourself.

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I bought my first first Dinosaur Jr LP yesterday.  Weird, I know.  I have always had an MP3 for “Freak Scene” on my computer… and I *might* have one Alex’s old Sebadoh records kicking around in a CD bin somewhere… but it wasn’t till I finished the chapter on Dinosaur Jr in Our Band Could Be Your Life that it all came together.

I was reading this book in the summer… then lost it after the chapter on Big Black! Fuck nuts.

Maybe Nana found it because on Friday my bed was made (thank you!) and the book was just sitting by my bedside table.  And the bookmark was still where I left it.  Magical.

I tucked into the story of Dinosaur Jr on Friday and it was amazing.  The band began as a couple hardcore skids, J Mascis and Lou Barlow, coming together in Amherst, Massachusetts  in the early 80s.  The hardcore band, Deep Wound, didn’t really work for them, but when J came out from behind the kit to sing and play guitar and Lou moved over to bass… they created a new and unique still for the time.  The blue-print for what we’d call grunge or alternative rock in the 90s.

They also hated each other (or it seemed that way in the book) and by the their third album, Bug, J Mascis and drummer Murph kicked Barlow out of the band.   According to wikipedia and twitter, they are friends again and releasing new music as the original Dinosaur Jr!

I love listening to old 80 alternative rock.  Especially on my turntable.  Its more distorted (because my amp sucks) and feels more true to the style of the time.  Maybe if I could track down a cassette player, I could jam out those early Sebadoh songs too.

J Mascis says Bug is his least favourite Dinosaur Jr record.  Which probably means it’ll be my favourite.  I’ve never met the guy… only read the legend in the book… but he sounds like a challenging dude.  I guess the true artists tend to be.  Actually… most the band features in Our Band Could Be Your Life are dysfunctional.

Bug works for me because it is fuzzy, heavy, original lineup but the most accessible of the early records.

Check out a couple selections.

“Freak Scene”

Side one, track one from Bug is one of the more recognizable songs from Dinosaur Jr.  It helped propel the record to number 1 on the UKs Indie chart.  The Brits of the late 80s and early 90s were fascinated with the authentic American sound and Dinosaur had that going on.

The lyrics seem like they are directly about J and Lou’s relationship.  After reading about their turmoil and drama, then hearing this song… it adds so much weight to the story.

The final cut on the LP is a song called “Don’t.” The only song on Bug sung by Lou Barlow.  He wails over and over, “Why don’t you like me?”  The songs is noise and fury and Barlow apparently coughed up blood after laying down the vocals.  Mascis himself said it was a little fucked up to make Barlow sing this song considering at the time, the two hated each other.

“Don’t”

So savage.  Sounds better on my stereo than in my headphones.  It needs the “room” to sound just right.

You know how much I love covers… Dinosaur recorded the Cure’s “Just like Heaven” for a compilation record, but dug it some much… they kept it for a single.  I t was released in the UK in ’89 and was their first UK chart song.  You’ll find the song now on the reissue of You’re Living All Over Me (the album before Bug).

“Just like Heaven”

That’s all I got for you right now.  Just finishing the book, Our Band Could Be Your Life and loving the chapter on Mudhoney/SubPop.

Go with yourself.

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