Shark Fetish – demo

Kinda falling behind here, I wonder if selling my soul and doing reviews has taken the wind out my sails (just kidding I kind of enjoy that).   Has the unstoppable force met an immovable object (hardly)?  Sort of feeling like the bridge has washed out on my stroll down memory lane.  Need to think of another gimmick.  Oh well, really wanted to post this band.

We burn our trash out here in the country which is probably not the most PC activity. Actually I have no information on burning vs. landfill, my feeling is that they both probably suck. Human existence in itself especially since the industrial revolution has mutated the whole cyclical order of things, in how it’s all about growth, decay and renewal. Or maybe it all goes back to the sixth day when man was created, hahaha.  You know if you’re into all that, you have to wonder about the omnipotence of a creator God, because he/she sure made one hell of a mistake when he/she created human beings (and then he/she gave us “dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth “…fucked up.  We will one day be able to marvel at our own creativity as we may approach the destructiveness of that asteroid those millions of years ago (unless you follow the thinking that the universe is only 6000 years old…a common way of thinking in my neck of the woods).  The blight of the universe.  I digress…is symbiotic a good word…we’re not that.  Anyway my manly job is to take out the trash after it’s been separated in the house into burnable, nonburnable and wet. If it’s not too windy I usually get the fire burning and satisfy my inner pyro. Once in a while if I’m not paying attention I might get surprised when my wife has hidden an aerosol can (another story on how that fits into the ecology) in a bag. It takes a while for those suckers to heat up but once they reach a certain point the explosion rivals that of a middle eastern suicide bomber or a roadside bomb.  I’ve learned to wear my sunglasses which are also safety rated, because the shrapnel from these explosions can be violent, but so far I’ve just been pelted with rotten burning food.  Need to think about composting.

Past due for another Humboldt post, believe it or not I’ve still got a few more up my sleeve, including Lank, Hockaloogie, the Leftovers and the Raiding the Airwaves and Making Blindness Fashionable comps.  Found a couple more tapes and was sent one so we haven’t breathed our last breathe in the Humboldt Kali category.  Shark Fetish was my buddy from the dorms, Doug’s band (I didn’t know the other guys), while I was playing in WD40.  We must have both started in about ’89.  I must say that I remember being a little put off by the harmonica, but I still found a way to enjoy the band, and really who couldn’t because Doug was a maniac on the stage and a natural as a frontman.  As usual my memory is shot, but I did manage to find this killer flyer from now long nonexistent Tsunami’s (I believe there’s a brewery there now).  I asked Doug to do a write up.
“Shark Fetish was:
Doug Grime, vocals and occasional guitar
Jeff Grimes, guitar, harmonica, and occasional vocals
Tom Ono, guitar
John Jauregi, drums
For the last several shows, Jon Quittner played bass
We got started in spring of 1989. Tom, Jeff, and I had a creative writing class together and they asked me to do vocals. Tom and Jeff were already playing with John. Our first show was at the Jambalaya with the Jane Maxwell Band under the name Naga Naga the Muses of Sex (which is what Tom Ono used to sing during Train Jam before I came along). The name Shark Fetish was taken from a zine that Jeff Grimes had done back in Ventura before moving to Arcata for college.
Our second show was playing on Ophelia Necro’s show on KHSU, and the third show was a house show that Aaron Elliot from Crimpshrine reviewed for a scene report in MRR. We played one show out of the Humboldt County area, at the Red Barn in Santa Barbara in the summer of 1990 with Brent’s TV. The demo got a decent write up in MRR, and I sold a dozen or so copies by mailorder based on that.
My favorite show was when we played with the Yowling Zygotes and Tragic Mulatto . My friend Seth had dropped acid with the YZ kids that afternoon and they had found a sheep’s carcass in the Arcata bottoms that they hung up behind stage. Our drummer also made a u-turn on 101 on the way to the show so he could slam some speed. I had been running a massive fever for several days beforehand, so everything had a surreal quality to it–the sheep’s carcass swinging from ropes behind the stage, John’s eyes sitting two inches inside his skull, the singer from Tragic Mulatto coming out wrapped entirely in cellophane. And, I was drunk.
The only other show that really stands out for me was when we played one of the booths at Lumber Jack Days. We set up a makeshift stage on a bunch of pallets, and maybe twenty or thirty serious meathead jocks came out to see us play. I was absolutely shitfaced, and as soon as we started playing the jocks started spitting on us and shoving us. I took a couple of swings at guys but was way too drunk to be very effective, and at one point one of the guys grabbed me and threw me into the drum set, knocking most of our equipment off the pallets. I held my ground and kept taunting them, and I remember grabbing a 40-ouncer and getting ready to fight as soon as the show was over. But, instead, all the jocko guys came up and threw there arms around us and told us how great we were. They thought that, since we were a “punk” band, they were supposed to spit at us, kick us, and hit us. Fucked up.
I can’t remember exactly why we broke up. I think it just got weird trying to make things work as drug and alcohol habits kept getting worse. A couple of us were shooting up by then (not me), and shows were getting weirder. Tom Ono also took off for a while. And became even more of a douchebag than he was when we were together.
( An aside–After Shark Fetish, I tried getting a couple of other bands together (like the semi-acoustic thing I tried with you and Quitty in the garage at the D Street house). The only one that came even close to getting going was the one with Quitty, Atlas, and Aaron Elliot. Aaron had a whole bunch of post-Crimpshrine songs he’d been working on that Quitty had written guitar parts for. I wanted to call the band Lank and Aaron wanted to call it Pinhead Gunpowder. We played a couple of shows, but Aaron bailed because he didn’t think the rest of us (besides Quitty) were good enough and because he wanted to move away from Arcata anyway. So, he took the songs with him when he started the East Bay “supergroup” Pinhead Gunpowder with Billy Joe from Green Day, Mike Hersch from Fuel, and the bassist from Monsula. It fucking burned me to hear Billy Joe singing songs that I had done with the test-drive version of the band.)”
Doug wrote some more personal stuff that I appreciated but chose not to share here.  As with any scene, even a small one like there was in the Arcata/McKinnleyville/Eureka/Samoa trapezoid there was no shortage of infighting, drama, addiction and just general mayhem that kept the music from fully blossoming in a unified sense (go figure human nature).  Or maybe that’s what defined it and made it special…I don’t know.  Amazing what creativity can be fueled by ignorance, immaturity and a generous helping of alcohol and drugs.  Doug, if you read this, thanx for the input to make this post possible and for giving us Shark fetish in the first place (and I really enjoyed that acoustic thing we tried out, what stands out in my mind about that was that you guys were so good and I have absolutely no musical talent even just playing a snare and a cymbal). Enjoy what was Shark Fetish.

Skate Jam

Train Jam/In Flagrante Delicto

Skrew Yourself


Robin Arkley

Milkman Blues


Uranium Rock


$666 Million Man

Signed DC


Reviews #2 (Mala In Se & Swear Jar)

With spring in full swing, just trying to guess if we’ve seen the last frost of the season so we can start the garden. In preparation for that, got the rototiller out, but it wouldn’t start. Pulled on that thing untill a blister formed and popped. It pays to winterize your equipment, but being a cheapskate I’m doomed to pay on the other end. Good thing I got the truck tagged and insured, no more taking the back roads watching the mirrors for the sheriff. I actually got a rush out of driving an untagged and unregistered vehicle, a slice of the old days when I was always looking over my shoulder (I don’t miss that). So tossed the tiller in the truck…actually had to have a buddy come over to help me, even my burly (haha) ass can’t pick that son of bitch up. Off to another buddy’s shop to have it wait in line behind the other buggered equipment for it’s chance to purr again. Because I’m a friend and an all around nice guy though, I get pushed further and further back in line by assholes who come in and demand that their shit gets fixed first. After about a week my buddy tells me the tiller is ready to bring life to soil once again, so this morning I drove my trusty truck to town so I could pick the tiller up after work. After a long day at work, it seems like they’re all long, I head over to my buddy’s shop. He’s got the battery charged on it so I don’t have to pull the cord like an idiot and the thing fires right up and he tells me it’s only going to cost 28 bucks. Ahhhhhh…the relief. My buddy, on top of working on small engines also works on motorcycles, so as usual I check out what he’s got in the shop and we shoot the shit. The highlight of the conversation is his story of how he almost died in the shop about three months back. He had gotten shit faced drunk after getting into a verbal altercation with his ex-girlfriend (another friend and co-worker of mine) at the bar. He lives in the back of his shop so being an old biker dude who is shit faced drunk and pissed the fuck off he decides to work on a motorcycle. Somewhere in there he passes out and smashes the back of his head open on another bike and proceeds to bleed to death on the floor in a pool of ever growing blood. At some point he comes to comes to, can’t find his glasses leaving him blind, no cell phone either and proceeds to wander all over his shop, leaving blood on the lamp, the computer, the walls, and tells himself that he’s going to just accept death. A little while later something inside of him, he has no explanation except God, tells him that he needs to live and it’s up to him if he’s going to do it. Somehow he gets over to the hospital. He is completely covered in blood so the doctor has a hard time finding where the blood is coming from, but sets up an IV to get some blood back into him. After 20 stitches and getting a lecture about how shit faced he is, the doctor tells him that if he’d have waited another half hour he would have been dead.  I tell him that I’m stoked that he’s still alive, but for some reason I didn’t ask him if this was a life changing experience for him.  So after an hour of shooting the shit, I’m ready to take my working rototiller home and setting myself up with a pot of coffee.  Hop in my truck…but it won’t start.

After I did that United Sons of Turmoil review the label sent me their CD and two others to check out.  The first one…

BAND: Mala In Se
LOCATION: Cincinnati, Ohio USA
RECORD: Mala In Se’s self-titled, full-length album is the band’s debut release and the 26th release for Phratry Records since the label began in 2004.
RELEASE DATE: Spring 2011
RIYL: Lightning Bolt, Slayer, Propagandhi, High On Fire, metal/punk
Mala In Se (Cincinnati, Ohio) is a three-piece noise-rock/art-metal band. A frenzied detour from the normal world of rock, punk and metal, the band de-constructs concepts from a large cache of musical genres, yet they’ve concocted a truly unique sound and vision.  The foundation of Mala In Se’s sound begins with the (un)usual combination of guitar, bass, and drums. Then it becomes dense with layers of samples, feedback, and auxiliary percussion. Lyrics are delivered in numerous, unsettling ways via shrieks (Joseph Thompson) and yells (Andy Perkins). And since the completion of this album, newly acquired drummer Danny McPherson adds an even more urgent agility to the music.  The album shifts from enormous amounts of physical energy to teardrops of minimalist soundscapes. Tempos go from blindingly-fast to a sluggish crawl before you can even count the meter. This band is a genre-bursting amalgamation of post-punk/thrash/avant-garde/nosie/math-rock and new age, with a little nod to free jazz in a live setting. What holds it all together is confident musicianship that allows the listener to lock-in with the compositions.  The term ‘Mala In Se’ means “wrongs in themselves; acts morally wrong; offenses against conscience.” It is a concept that spews from the band’s lyrics which focus on subjects such as animal testing/animal cruelty, back-room deals and government conspiracies, environmentalism and self-awareness.
Don’t know why I include those press releases.  I guess I feel inadequate with my own powers of the written word, which is akin to my swimming, I can swim to save my life, but that’s about it.  If you don’t like what I have to say at least you have someone’s expert take. There’s a style to a review, my buddy Mike talked about it once at his place, a genre that’s almost scripted, maybe a little cheezy.  My first thoughts on the band which I shared with the label when I was asking for a hard copy, “the shit kicks ass in seven different ways.”  These guys definitely can play their instruments, but that isn’t what makes them good, even though I kinda dig them.  First band that came to mind was Creedle as far as what in my experience they sound like.  Creedle maybe have the upper hand musician wise but, Mala In Se are all over the place.  A pretty wide variety of sounds, reflecting numerous influences, with kind of that technical progressive jazz feel.  Not a boring moment on this thing, even though the songs are longer than I like them (I have to get over that, shit I love Black Sabbath’s first album).  The songs with all the changes don’t seem to have that boring old 4/4, verse/chorus thing going on.  Still trying to wrap my head around the vocalist but these guys are well worth a listen.  Start out with this one off their 7″ that’s include with the vinyl release, but not on the CD…
Trip on their jazz-metal stylings…
Stay Afloat
and a live tune I ripped from one of their youtube vids..
Time Lapse Photography of Decomposing Animals

SWEAR JAR (Cincinnati, Ohio) does not belong in this decade. Their sound is the result of an evolution started by bands such as Drive Like Jehu, Jesus Lizard, Shellac, Fugazi, and Pitchblende.  Audience members have also drawn parallels to Minutemen, NoMeansNo and The Crucifucks—most likely due to Swear Jar’s minimalist style and uniquely energetic presentation. Cuss is for fans of early SST, Alternative Tentacles and Touch & Go releases.The members of Swear Jar share a common enthusiasm for refreshingly new, bombastic, hardcore rock, garnished with unexpected transitions. It’s music that makes you think, but still makes you move. Some have described Swear Jar as ‘music for musicians’. Most people won’t like it. And that’s just fine by both the band and label. You either get it, or you don’t. If you don’t love Swear Jar, you probably hate them. The band is focused on exploring new ideas and applying them to punk, underground, indie, or whatever kind of “rock” you want to call it this week. Swear Jar is three friends who make music together and share an interest in provoking a reaction and connecting with even the smallest audience. Two years in the making, Cuss is the band’s debut album, and the 25th release for Phratry Records in six years. Prior to the completion of this album, Swear Jar had been playing throughout the MidWest with more shows to follow in support of this new record.
Above is another press release, but in a nutshell here’s my take on Swear Jar…bass heavy just the way I like it, nothing worse than a bass being relegated to just an accent for the guitar and drums, and almost imperceptible. We don’t have that problem here.  Another three peice, but these guys have that less is more thing going on and they certainly go heavy on the more.  A nice edge to the vocals but not annoyingly so.  Favorite tune hands down is the first track on the CD… 
I disagree with the above where they’re described as music for musicians’, this is some doen to earth easy to groove to shit.  Trip on this one to get a flavor of that and a feel for how they write lyrics that will put a grin on your face…
Bury My Body
Live ripped off of youtube…
Sasquatch (live on Friday Night Fu)

Record Store Day!

Gonna try to make it to Salina, Kansas’ House of Sight and Sound, the closest record store that actually sells vinyl…150 miles away.

Edit: Called the record store today and the fuckers are going out of business and not participating this year…next closest record store is Manahatan, Kansas’ Sisters of Sound…220 miles away.  Fuct.  Maybe I’ll go to the one closing and see what kind of discounts they have for their going out of business sale.  If you’re going to record store day and want to pick up some records for me, I’d pay you, drop me an email.

No God

“Please…please…please God…please.”
“No God.”

As fine a moment confronting that age old question in the face of tragedy. In some ways maybe more esoteric, but right up there with Taxi Driver’s “You talking to me”, Scarface’s “Say hello to my little friend” or Goodfellas’ “What am I a clown…do I amuse you?”

Sean over at Damaging Noise has outdone himself again with another murderous music recommendation, a band called Rappa outta Japan proving that even in 2011 the Japanese have the creation of hard music down to a science. He gave the link to a torrent but you can also get it here. Check out a few to see what I mean…

I love Saturday!

NEW WAVE rock ‘n’ roll Get behind it before it gets past you. 2×7″ comp.

I have to agree with Homer, torture me with donuts anytime.  My cousin owned a donut/coffee shop not too far from where I’m at here in the middle of nowhere and she insisted that for me, both were always free. My Mom says that my love for donuts and also fish and chips, is due to the fact that she worked at Winchells and H. Salt Fish & Chips in Hollywood when she was pregnant with me. My in utero education also included lessons in music appreciation (hence my love of music) in the form of a nightclub over on Temple street in LA called the Intersection. But the question is can a man live on music and fried food alone?

Don’t usually get clued into events like birth, death and anniversaries until after the fact so as a result I don’t get to represent that much around, like some of your better sites do.  This morning on the radio, Elwood Blues reminded me that today is Muddy Waters’ birthday.  As far as music appreciation, he might be in lesson #1 for the origins of rock and roll.  Thanx to this site, which has great taste, but didn’t have anything else to say except cut and paste, I didn’t have too look far for Mr. Waters’ earliest recordings.   Here’s one to give you a lesson in how to make a guitar speak for you…1941 baby,
Country Blues

SteveOne of my many Aunts back in the 70’s had this Steve Miller Band album (Book of Dreams) painted on her bedroom wall.  Actually a very beautiful painting even if it is kind of cliche and could be considered typical of the 70’s.  I can remember that she did an incredible job on it and it was huge, probably 5 feet across, but all I could think of was that the circle wasn’t perfectly round.  Why is that?  Even today I can look at the most epic tattoo but if the lines aren’t perfectly straight or the curves aren’t smooth, that’s what pops out at me.  Anyway they played a tune on my new classic rock radio station (if you remember the old one got typical and only had a relatively small number of tunes in their selection, thus doomed to play the same songs over and over again [and I don’t care how good of a tune ACDC’s Back in Black is, you just can’t listen to it every day, play fucking Jailbreak every once in a while]) and I can’t for the life of me ever remember hearing it.   The album before Book Of Dreams, Fly Like An Eagle (1976) had hits like the title track and “Take the Money and Run”, so unless you’re a fan I can imagine most radio stations didn’t play this one you probably wouldn’t have heard it (or care too?  I don’t know).  Bad ass tune in my opinion with great lyrics, I didn’t guess it as being SMB (even though it’s sounds exactly like one of his tunes), check it…
Steve Miller Band – Serenade
Just for the sake of a needless compare and contrast, trip on what SMB was doing 8 years earlier on their first album (or not),
Steve Miller Band – Steppin’ Stone

New Wave Sire 1This little double 7″ comp from 1977 was a history lesson for me, as before this thing I knew nothing about three of the bands (my old elementary school buddy Roy, his Mom was into the Talking Heads and I’d Heard them on the radio, and actually my least favorite band on the comp).  On a side note these scans are from the new $32 all-in-one scanner printer thing-a-ma-bob I got at one of the up and coming multi-death corporations, Walmart (what do you want, it was cheap and Walmart chased of all the little Mom and Pop competition years ago in my neck of the woods).  Sire Records put together a nice little package of a sampler here (albeit with a stupid title), I don’t think it’s very rare though and the tracks are just the “hits” off of their Sire released LPs, but damn…  After I ripped it, listened to it several times through and thought that it’s too bad I don’t have all the albums these tunes are samples of.  The bands here are all historic and a guy could go on and on about their importance, so if you haven’t gotten into them before it would be worth it to check out their albums.  One thing all the bands have in common is those snotty as fuck vocals, except for the Talking Heads whose music, at first listen, sound a little like 70’s Michael Jackson (and actually the Saints’ vocalist sounds a little like a mix between Iggy and Bob Dylan, hahaha).  Anyway…

Dead Boys-All this and More

Dead Boys-Sonic Reducer

from the Talking Heads: 77 LP

Talking Heads-Uh-oh, Love Comes To Town

Talking Heads-Don’t Worry About the Government

from the (I’m) Stranded LP

The Saints-(I’m) Stranded

The Saints-Erotic Neurotic

from the Blank Generation LP

Richard Hell & The Voidoids-Blank Generation

Richard Hell & The Voidoids-Betrayal Takes Two

Just in case you wanted to hear the original of the Saints’ “(I’m) Stranded” a superior site like Peter’s is where you need to look.  Here’s the vid for the album version…

You can get this at Discogs