Tag Archives: Steve Albini

Ep. #287: Fake Limbs

Fake Limbs are a noisy rock band who hail from the west side of Chicago, Illinois. Known for creating a kind of “social justice street rock” that’s exhilarating and outspoken, the band formed in 2011 and have released three acclaimed full-length albums, including 2016’s Matronly, which is out now via Don Giovanni Records. Fake Limbs have been on the road a bunch of late and, before their recent show at the Silver Dollar in Toronto, lead singer Stephen Sowley and I ate some pizza at Fresca, just west of College and Spadina, and then we talked about his time in Toronto and tour managing, Jenny Hval, Screaming Females don’t really need roadies, driving and sleeping in cars and planes, Brendan Fraser and The Mummy, Danny Brown’s leather sleep mask, flight recliners, Ted, Colin Atrophy’s Slice Harvester, Fresca Pizza in Toronto, Chicago and Montreal, living in upstate New York, Second City and comedy, The Blues Brothers, not from Chicago, the Cubs’ World Series win, loser town, a goat and Steve Bartman, baseball points, a momentary Sowley curse, loving the Cubs and Wrigley Field and Toronto Blue Jays fans, so Grohl, working at Electrical Audio with Steve Albini, studio managing, encountering Iggy and the Stooges within weeks of taking a job at EA, the Breeders, working at Reckless Records, cashing Albini out on his first day at RR, lending Iggy $40, going to see Gimme Danger on election night, how Jim Jarmusch’s film basically overlooked the last Stooges record The Weirdness, which Albini engineered, election night predictions, phones on and off in the movie theatre, no surprise, voter participation, echo chambers, the shock, feeling ill- and misinformed about class-based anger, how Trump did everything he possibly could to willfully lose this election, people steeling themselves for the next four years, people who protest, The Dark Knight Rises, the left and exclusion and intersectionality, Michael Moore’s Facebook Live report during a recent protest in New York City, rationale, the ‘this will be good for comedy/punk rock’ stupidity, hoping for empathy, talking about Fake Limbs and their album Matronly, Black Lives Matter and “An Inconvenience,” Trump’s cabinet, what is punk, dinner with Grace Ambrose, Phleg Camp, the Jesus Lizard, Carla Bozulich, influence projection, idiots, Don Giovanni Records, Moor Mother’s Fetish Bones, more hugs, Bandcamp and Jes Skolnik, the Fugazi Live Archive, the song “Lil Bit,” and that was all from Fresca.

Related links: dongiovannirecords.com fakelimbs.com frescapizzapasta.com vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #275: Incredible Love – Alan Vega & Suicide Remembered by Steve Albini, Jehnny Beth, Brendan Canty, Kid Millions, Robyn Phillips, Priya Thomas, & Mike Watt

On July 16, 2016, Alan Vega died peacefully in his sleep at the age of 78. In a statement, Vega’s family said, “With profound sadness and a stillness that only news like this can bring, we regret to inform you that the great artist and creative force, Alan Vega has passed away. Alan was not only relentlessly creative, writing music and painting until the end, he was also startlingly unique. Along with Martin Rev, in the early 1970s, they formed the two person avant band known as Suicide. Almost immediately, their incredible and unclassifiable music went against every possible grain. Their confrontational live performances, light-years before ‘Punk Rock,’ are the stuff of legend. Their first, self-titled album is one of the single most challenging and noteworthy achievements in American music. Alan Vega was the quintessential artist on every imaginable level. His entire life was devoted to outputting what his vision commanded of him.” It was a fitting encapsulation of a man whose work and attitude influenced many of the most significant artists in underground and mainstream music, from every generation really. This episode features personal reflections and first and second hand anecdotes about Vega and Suicide by fans like Steve Albini of Shellac of North America, Jehnny Beth of Savages, Brendan Canty of Fugazi, Kid Millions of Oneida (a.k.a. John Colpitts of Man Forever), Robyn Phillips of Vallens, Priya Thomas, and Mike Watt of the Minutemen.

Related playlist: “I Remember (Live at CBGB’s)” Suicide | “Frankie Teardrop” Suicide | “Down On the Street” The Stooges | “23 Minutes Over Brussels” Suicide | “Diamonds, Fur Coat, Champagne” Suicide | “Girl” Suicide | “Ghost Rider” Suicide | “Dream Baby Dream” Suicide | “State Trooper” Bruce Springsteen | “Dream Baby Dream” Bruce Springsteen | “Rocket USA” Suicide | “Rocket USA” Oneida ft. Alan Vega | “Dream Baby Dream” Savages | “Ghost Rider (Live at All Tomorrow’s Parties 2010)” Suicide | “Tangerine” Christophe ft. Alan Vega | “I Remember” Suicide

Related links: zerecords.com vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #251: The Burning Hell

The Burning Hell is one of the best and smartest pop, rock, folk bands in the world. Led by founder Mathias Kom and his partner Ariel Sharratt, the Burning Hell consist of people from Peterborough, Ontario, St. John’s, Newfoundland, and Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. Their latest witty, outspoken, and reflective album is called Public Library, it’s out now via a wonderful Canadian label called Headless Owl and in Europe via BB*ISLAND, and has prompted the band to tour all over the place. On a recent Sunday, I caught up with Mathias and Ariel to discuss the board games café Snakes and Lattes in Toronto, union dues, coffee connections, knowing Mathias and seeing all of Canada with him and Wax Mannequin, straight edge, thinking about our time and childhood, the ’80s and the ’50s, how industries create their own markets, creating content for YouTube when they don’t pay artists anything for that content, how to make a living, selling t-shirts and Protomartyr, pity purchases, the failure of albums versus live shows and how live shows became an outlet for bands to play their whole albums in sequence, guilt-free movie downloading, hardcore Burning Hell fans, what playing Glastonbury was like, general audiences, too many music festivals and music’s economic landscape, experiential music hangs, things have changed, capitalism was right maybe, Girls Rock Camp and clarinets, the joy of playing music live, where Mathias comes from, where Ariel and Mathias came from, our age of empowerment, dealing with terrible people, a community band that almost seemed imaginary, Peterborough and the Silver Hearts, living down a ramshackle history, the Ariel and Mathias album Don’t Believe the Hyperreal, the new Burning Hell album Public Library and then Mathias makes me read a spiel I wrote for it, the Burning Hell are cool, Al Tuck again, the middle ages, advocacy and obscurity, coffee is fattening, “Fuck the Government, I Love You,’ David Berman likes this song, and then, board game over.

Related links: wearetheburninghell.com headlessowlrecords.bandcamp.com vishkhanna.com

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