Wednesday, September 01, 2004

No Furry, as the hip hop kids say.
Forgive my somewhat less than punctual posting schedule as of late; I've been getting the next disc ready for all ya'll.

Did he say next disc? Gosharootie, he DID!

For the past several months, I've been sending out a mix CD collection with an arbitrary and offbeat theme (previous mixes include "songs by children", "songs with the word "f*ck" in the title", "songs that start with the letter B by artists whose names start with the letter B", "embarrassing music to listen to at the gym", "spider music", "acapella tracks" and our last compilation, "blue music"). These CD's are sent to Tofu Hut listeners who are granted a scant few days to listen to the CD and then email me a track by track review of the mix. Then I post their reviews UNCUT, UNCENSORED and UNEDITED (but peppered with my own smartass comments and observations in italics) along with the tracks in question. It's like listening to a mix CD with a bunch of friends... only you don't have to have any friends... except me. And I'm already your friend! Yay! Get it? Got it? Good!

Our theme this time around is one that I think we can ALL relate to:


It's a VAST topic. I could've remade this CD a dozen times over with various and sundry drinking songs but I instead opted to try to limn all of the SENSATIONS that engage in a solid drunk: mellowness, euphoria, nausea, horniness, confusion, cool acceptance, anger... It's a downright cornucopia of drunken emotion! Just remember to take a drink of water between songs and take a couple of vitamin C at the end of the week and you should be fine.

Let's meet our drinking buddies. First up is Brooks, who describes himself as:

Married, 25, a cat person. I am not the somewhat famous folk-country musician. I live near St. Louis, but I commute to Minneapolis on a weekly basis for work. My music writing credentials include writing concert and CD reviews for MOHeads.com, a site dedicated to jamband music in St. Louis, Kansas City and all the space in between (currently re-going major renovation). So while I used to be a big jamband fan, my tastes have been moving in different directions in the past two years and I've discovered a new appreciation for pop music as well as some indie rock. I've been reading the Tofu Hut for a few months now.

The Mix: I dug the artwork on the disc. "We Are Drunk" is the perfect way to start the mix, by the way. Those bizzare kid tracks are priceless. Like, I love to put that Tiny Tot Calvin song you posted a while back at the tale end of most of my mixes. Finally, I'd probably have changed up the track order. Mostly scatter the genres around a bit. Overall, I really enjoyed the mix. Thanks a bunch for sending it over!

Hey man, it's what we do. Glad you enjoyed it. Who's up next?

I'm illovich (aka p-marx hanley), owner operator of illovich.com. I'm the drummer for downmf, so I guess that makes me think I know something about music. I don't though... my musical knowledge is heavily leaned towards pop music that I don't really care about, and the various rarities and obscura that my friends that actually care about music consumption share with /push on me.

I live with my wife and our pets somewhere in Philadelphia, and I love all of them very much. Especially my wife (link to her super secret website not allowed to be published) and my dogs and my cats (cats don't need webpages) . I make money as an Instructional Designer at Temple University, but I can see your eyes glassing up, so let's not talk about me anymore.

Your wish is my command, illmatic. Besides, it's time to holla at Mark:

You may know me as robot mark from http://music.for-robots.com. It's a great little place. John likes to write there sometimes too.

I only wish I had more time to write there more often. It really is a great site and well worth your time.

Other than that I sit around all day. I got fired recently, so I don't have much to do but listen to mix cds and write comments about every single track. If you like what you heard today, you can read more about it your local library. Don't do drugs.

Well, I was at a loss right away because I ripped the liner notes when I opened the package. Oh well. So I tried to envision this cd as a little story about a night out, starting with the first drink and working it's way through all the highs and lows of getting three sheets to the wind on spirits. I cracked my first beer when I hit the play button and the rest is history. Overall, I'll give this mix a 6 out of 10.

Ouch! Yer breakin' my heart man!

It's a tremendous effort, but at times I felt the drunk theme was too limiting. There are plenty of great drinking songs that aren't overtly so. However, there were a few glaring ommissions. Where was Crooked Fingers' "New Drink for the Old Drunk"? I would've let with track. Where were the Pogues? Thankfully, there were some great omissions that I'm thankful for. No "Bourbon, Shot and Beer" bullshit on here. Although I probably could've used a little Eric Burdon's "Spill the Wine."

Can't please all the people all the time. Insert shrug and smiley here.

Anyway, this mix did an able job of balancing all sorts of genres. It hit a few lulls, but otherwise it was great, and I'll definitely listen to it again.

Well, hell; that's what it's really all about anyway. Last man up is Jowey:

A man who enjoys the occasional drink, I'm excited to be doing a review of a CD all about drinking. Interestingly enough, I've got a history with a few of the artists on the CD, especially those of the country persuasion. My Dad, Johnny "K" Koval, is a member of both the NACMAI & the ROPE association's hall of fames. Heck, he even hosted the Opry Matinee for several years, besides being a long-time DJ for WSM.

As long as we're braggin' on our musical fathers, did I ever tell you guys that my dad gave me his Grammy nomination? Before I got into my current "moving-from-apartment-to-apartment" schtick, I always used to mark my space by hanging it up in the bathroom.

Pops is currently doing work at the Country Music Hall of Fame for the next few weeks, prioritizing the digitalization of their archives. It's a busy life.

I enjoyed having the opportunity to review for the site and hope everyone else has as much fun as I do at the Tofuhut. Oh...check out my new blog, Caffeine Low, it's coming along..I'll have mp3s or something, eventually. Peace.

Let's get DRUNK, kids!

glisten: Drunkard #1

1. Karen - "We Are Drunk"

Jowey - They're Drunk....Is the kid trying to hiccup or burp? "Puppies & Screams" will haunt my dreams.

Mark - I used to record stuff like this all the time with my brother. I think it's a nice way to start off the mix, wondering it that's a little Tofu pretending to be drunk, or just some random audio clip.

Illovich - Nothing compares to the charm of home reording as a child. I was more in the camp of putting on an LP (Billy Joel's "Glass Houses", Meatloaf's "Bat out of Hell", KISS's "Alive II" and of course, David Bowie's "Changes Two" were my favorites) and singing along in my 8 year old falsetto. Unfortunately, I found these tapes and destroyed them in a fit of adolescent embarrassment.

My "me on the radio" tapes were complex plays about the soap operas of my action figures, including a plastic brachiosaurus skeleton with a thick Southern accent. His name was Skelly.

Man, I'd give ANYTHING to have those tapes back. Wonder whatever happened to 'em?

What did the rest of you guys do with YOURS?

But enough about me, this track is a charming interpretation of drunkenness by a little kid who obviously and thankfully doesn't seem to have much experience with actually being drunk. A good bit of mix glue, this track is a nice start to the disk.

Brooks - Karen sounds like she's maybe, I dunno, six. She's got a cartoony understanding of drunkenness. The hiccups are classic.

Download this track and many more with similar sensibilities from Comfort Stand Records, the home of free hipster music on the web.
Pony up to the bar.
Meet our future presidents.
"'Drunk and Disorderly' Chimps Attacking Ugandan Children"


2. Pedro The Lion - "Keep Swinging"

Jowey - Nice harmonies...Chi-town representin'...

Mark - Slow and steady. Great way to start off a night of drinking. Build a little nest for the booze to float. Pedro gets a lot of shit, but I like them. I actually just had a friend call me the other day and ask if I had ever shit the bed, because he had. He wanted to not be alone in this. So I lied and told him I had. Sucker.

Illovich - The first thing I thought when this track started was "oh my god, it's Thin White Rope!" But it wasn't, and I knew that by the first chorus. I'm not really a rock critic, and I don't keep up with everybody who was ever in a band, so I'm not sure if this is a later thing from TWR members or what. The Pedro the Lion website is sort of unhelpful, it seems more aligned to getting the band good press in music mags, so they'll be described as "important" "revolutionary" and other rock journalism cliches than actually telling you much about the band.

This is not to say that the track isn't good. I like it, especially the harmonies that come in at the middle of the verse. The verse really does have a Thin white Rope influence, I think. It's the baseline, I'm pretty sure.

Brooks - A song about one of the consequences of drinking - getting sick. I really like this tune and it's probably my favorite on the mix.

"You got drunk and shit the bed" is a great rockstar line.

Pedro the Lion grew on me like crazy. This is a repost from another musicblog, likely TTIKtDA, FLUX or GRAMOPHONE; they're the guys that tend to turn me on to this material.

Buy "Achilles' Heel" direct from Jade Tree Records.
Unsure whether or not it's worth the cash? DL another track from the album ("Discretion") while you're there and see if it's worth the green. I think so.
Read this interview with Pedro's lead singer/guitarist David Bazan about the wages of being a "Christian Rock Star".
Visit the aforementioned official site.

Keep an eye out for Pedro if you're on the West coast; he's touring.


I was absolutely HORRIFIED last night when I accidentally and permanently erased 8 GIGS of music off my hard drive. Total nightmare. Friends don't let friends post while tired and I should've known better. Sigh.
Check out this neat NPR piece on musicblogs I found via FLUX (scroll down).
I like it a lot; it's brief but makes its points concise and clear: we're not a p2p; we're not bad folk; we're respectful of the music and (I keep hearing this, but I doubt it refers to me) we're journalists of a new movement.

Heck, I just wanna make you listen to six year olds warble into portable tape players and kazoo music. Is that so wrong?
TERRIBLY BEHIND on my posting. Future special features include reviews of the Sufjan Stevens concert (with music), the Sharon Jones concert (with music), the one hour photo shoot for th' Stone (with dish and celebrity gossip; she made me pose like Avril, people!), about SIXTY new musicblogs to list and the LONG RUMOURED "How to Musicblog" feature. All of these are at least started and a few of them just need an hour or two of polish to be ready to get up.

As it stands, I'm hard pressed just to post music and my reinfatuation with films is eating into blogging time. We should be okay for the next few weeks tho' as I spent the past five hours prepping for the week.

Your boy is getting exhausted out here. Show me some love.