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Old 02-06-2012, 08:56 AM   #71 (permalink)
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Thanks for the feedback guys, nice to know that I'm not just sprouting out rubbish! I'll make an effort to finish this pretty soon, just a bit busy lately.
Yes please do! I won't lie I check this thread daily just in case my latest fix is in!

Will Whipping Boy feature?
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Old 02-06-2012, 11:07 AM   #72 (permalink)
 
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Yes please do! I won't lie I check this thread daily just in case my latest fix is in!

Will Whipping Boy feature?
Not in my list of 50 but I'm going to include a few bonus albums at the end and I might include an album of theirs.

There will however be one more Irish band in my 50. I'll keep you guessing! (and no it's not U2).
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Old 02-07-2012, 07:36 AM   #73 (permalink)
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Well in the spirit of guessing I'll put my weight behind Redneck Manifesto!
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:57 PM   #74 (permalink)
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Not in my list of 50 but I'm going to include a few bonus albums at the end and I might include an album of theirs.

There will however be one more Irish band in my 50. I'll keep you guessing! (and no it's not U2).
I guess Damien Rice or Two Door Cinema Club!
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Old 02-14-2012, 02:11 PM   #75 (permalink)
 
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Polvo - Today's Active Lifestyles (1993)



Along with Slint, Polvo are one of the pioneering bands of math rock and a big influence on left-field indie rock weirdness in general. Today’s Active Lifestyles is a skewed and dissonant masterpiece that tore apart the indie rock rule book. The album is characterised by unpredictable song structures and arrangements that leave the listener baffled yet intrigued and guitar tunings that sound completely wrong yet so right at the same time. But despite the chaotic and unpredictable racket they still manage to produce some great songs that stick with you, such as the opener ‘Thermal Treasure’, the excellent ‘Lazy Comet’ and the strangely melodic ‘Tilebreaker’. The longer songs, the seven-minute-plus ‘Stinger (Five Wings)’ and ‘Gemini Cusp’, allow the band to experiment even more and dazzle the listener with their chaotic yet wonderfully controlled musicianship and song structures. It sounds improvised at times but strangely enough it’s not.

Their influences aren’t difficult to pick out. Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. are noticeable influences that come to mind, but you can sometimes pick out a no-wave vibe in their music at times mainly due to the unconventional arrangements and tunings. But Polvo stand out as one of the more original bands of the 90’s and their influence still lives on in today’s music through bands such as Battles. Polvo also reformed a few years ago and released In Prism in 2009, which is also a very strong album and one well worth listening to along with this.

Recommended Songs: ‘Lazy Comet’, ‘Stinger (Five Wings)’, ‘Tilebreaker’


Red House Painters - Red House Painters (1993)



Red House Painters’ 1993 self-titled album, also referred to as ‘Rollercoaster’ due to the album cover and also to distinguish it from their other self-titled album, is a sprawling album that takes the listen on a rollercoaster of emotions (no pun intended). It’s not a very happy album however; it’s an album to wallow in despair to if you allow yourself to be taken along for the ride. The opener ‘Grace Cathedral Park’ is a beautifully bittersweet song but it doesn’t get any more downbeat than ‘Katy Song’, a broken-hearted message to a lost love. It may be a deeply depressing song but it’s just wonderful. The slow and acoustic-based ‘Take Me Out’ also has a feeling of regret and longing that’s heart-breaking to listen to. There are still however some moments of light breaking through with the lively ‘New Jersey’, the swirling and colourful ‘Mistress’ and the somewhat comforting and reassuring ‘Strawberry Hill’, which comes like a break in the clouds near the end of the album after some bleak, heavy and downbeat listening.

One does however feel that the running time is a bit too long and to be honest there are one or two songs that could have been cut from this album. But that certainly doesn’t prevent this album from amazing me every time I listen to it. It’s an album to lose yourself in and find some sort of comfort when you are feeling low, and it does a good job of reassuring you.

Recommended Songs: ‘Grace Cathedral Park’, ‘Katy Song’, ‘Take Me Out’
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Old 02-16-2012, 07:08 AM   #76 (permalink)
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More excellent albums, Zero!

I also concur about the Red House Painters album - it is slightly too long, I've always thought they should've cut a few songs. The overall quality of the album is fantastic though, so it's not a big deal. Lyrically Kozelek is one of the best, I think.
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Old 02-23-2012, 02:21 AM   #77 (permalink)
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How does Lifestyles hold up in comparison to Exploded Drawing? I listened to the latter and wasn't too impressed, so I'm wondering if I should give Lifestyles a go
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Old 04-01-2012, 02:18 PM   #78 (permalink)
 
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Rollerskate Skinny - Horsedrawn Wishes (1996)



Rollerskate Skinny formed in Dublin in 1992 and existed for only four years, releasing only two albums. The band featured Kevin Shields’ younger brother Jimi on guitar for their first album Shoulder Voices but he left the band before the recording of their brilliant second album Horsedrawn Wishes. Like the album title itself the music has a very strange, surreal, dreamlike quality to it. It’s a kaleidoscopic collision of alternative rock, psychedelic pop and shoegaze and sometimes even sounds like Deerhunter, long before Deerhunter. Opening track ‘Swingboat Yawning’ features a collage of unusual guitar sounds and strange effects yet is all held together by some swaggering and infectious vocal hooks. The lead single from the album ‘Speed to My Side’ is a brilliant exercise in combining off-kilter weirdness and accessibility with its unusual musical arrangements and catchy chorus hooks. It’s something The Flaming Lips would be proud of. Elsewhere the acoustic-based ‘All Mornings Break’ invokes the tired and bleary feeling of dawn breaking after a long night drinking and/or on drugs, while ‘Angela Starling’ creates a trippy, dreamlike world in your mind before bringing it all crashing back down to earth with a loud and uplifting chorus.

Horsedrawn Wishes lies as a largely forgotten gem of the 90’s yet still has a small number of cult admirers. The album is let down slightly by a couple of filler tracks, and would have benefited from a shorter running time, but it is packed with some great psychedelic pop songs and all kinds of strange and wonderful sounds and arrangements. It’s an album well-worth unearthing.

Recommended Songs: ‘Swingboat Yawning’, ‘Speed to My Side’, ‘Angela Starling’



Scratch Acid - Scratch Acid (1984)



Scratch Acid’s self-titled debut is one of those records that makes me scratch my head in bewilderment and confusion and wonder what the hell is going on. The band sound way ahead of their time here and completely out of step with the American underground punk scene that spawned them. Their unhinged noise-rock sound provides the basis for frontman David Yow (who would later go on to front The Jesus Lizard) to ramble and babble like a crazed hobo. Trying to work out what their songs are actually about is challenging and perhaps even a waste of time. While it’s not quite a full-length album every moment of this twenty-two minute record is highly engaging and thoroughly rewarding. Songs like ‘Cannibal’, ‘Owner’s Lament’ and ‘Lay Screaming’ seem to predict the wave of alternative rock that would become prominent in the American underground and in particular the Seattle grunge scene. Indeed Kurt Cobain has cited Scratch Acid as a huge influence and you can certainly hear on this album where Kurt got some of his ideas. ‘Owner’s Lament’ in particular sounds like nothing else other than a band creating some truly original music. Songs such as the brief and aggressive ‘Monsters’ and the completely bonkers ‘El Espectro’ show traces of the band’s punk roots but warped almost beyond recognition as to be practically irrelevant.

The influence of this album can be heard in not just Nirvana, its pioneering post-hardcore sound, with its skewed guitar lines and unusual time signatures, seems to have had a big influence on bands such as At The Drive-In and Polvo. It’s a snapshot of a very exciting time in music and it still sounds amazing and just as fresh nearly twenty-eight years later.

Recommended Songs: ‘Cannibal’, ‘Owner’s Lament’, ‘El Espectro’
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Old 04-01-2012, 02:21 PM   #79 (permalink)
 
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How does Lifestyles hold up in comparison to Exploded Drawing? I listened to the latter and wasn't too impressed, so I'm wondering if I should give Lifestyles a go
Exploded Drawing is nearly just as good, although it seems slightly less focused than Today's Active Lifestyles. Exploded Drawings has a slightly more accessible sound while Today's Active Lifestyles is that little bit rawer and more experimental. You could give it a shot I guess.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:34 AM   #80 (permalink)
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I just saw Scratch Acid live - not something I ever thought I'd say. The mosh pit for 'Monsters' nearly killed me.

Unlike a Baptist is my favourite song by them - sounds like the Birthday Party, but with an off-the-rails American instead of Cave on vocals. Great band!
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