#332: Batman & Robin soundtrack

May 23, 2017

We gave our Patreon patrons the opportunity to vote one four different releases from May of 1997, and the consensus winner was eclectic soundtrack from the Batman & Robin movie starring George Clooney, Chris O’Donnell, Alicia Silverstone and more. A mixed bag for sure, there are some clear gems and some awful groaners. We sift through track-by-track and try to find more of the former than the latter. What is worth a revisit? Tune in to find out.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - The End Is The Beginning Is The End by The Smashing Pumpkins

10:53 - Look Into My Eyes by Bone Thugs-n-Harmony

13:46 - Gotham City by R. Kelly

21:12 - Lazy Eye by Goo Goo Dolls

27:08 - The Bug by Soul Coughing

34:15 - True to Myself by Eric Benét

Outro - The Beginning Is The End Is The Beginning by The Smashing Pumpkins


#331: Cockamamie by Jennifer Trynin

May 16, 2017

The winner of our first quarter Patreon contest stops by with his free requested review pick - 1995′s Cockamamie by Jennifer Trynin. Though part of a fertile 90s Boston music scene, Jen Trynin is a bit of an anomaly, self-releasing her debut album prior to a major label bidding war. Her guitar playing shifts between familiar alternative pop and more angular riffing with a rock solid rhythm section. But ultimate, it’s the songs that matters. She managed to score a minor hit with “Better Than Nothing,” but how does the rest of the album fair? Tune in to find out.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Better Than Nothing

5:17 - Happier

8:59 - Knock Me Down

17:54 - Do It Alone

Outro - One Year Down


#330: Duran Duran In The 90s

May 9, 2017

We’re back with another “In The 90s” roundtable, our chance to revisit a popular artist from the 1980s and see how they navigated the shifting musical landscape of the 1990s. With fourteen Top 40 hits and two number one singles in the U.S., Duran Duran were one of the most successful artists of the 80s. However, they entered the new decade on the decline, their fifth album Big Thing failing to resonate with fans or critics the way their previous four releases had. How did their 90s output fare in comparison? To help us navigate through their catalog, we’re joined by Annie Zaleski (Salon, AV Club), Chip Midnight (Kids Interview Bands) and Keith Sawyer (WMBR).

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Duran Duran Medley (Come Undone, Ordinary World, Electric Barbarella)

9:21 - All She Wants Is (from Liberty)

18:23 - Too Much Information (from Duran Duran/The Wedding Album)

28:36 - 911 is a Joke (from Thank You)

36:31 - Out of My Mind (from Medazzaland)

Outro - White Lines (from Thank You)


#329: Interview with Marko DeSantis of Sugarcult, The Ataris and more

May 2, 2017

Musician, label owner, DJ, writer, teacher - you name it, Marko DeSantis has probably done it. You probably know him as the guitarist in pop punk band Sugarcult, and he shares the history of their formation, as well as his involvement in bands such as The Ataris, Nerf Herder, the Swingin Utters, Bad Astronaut. Marko shares his experiences growing up in Santa Barbara, CA, and contributing to the upcoming Sweet Relief “Strange 80s” benefit show.

Make sure to visit our Patreon page for bonus content.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Pretty Girl (The Way) by Sugarcult

Outro - Lately by The Ataris


#328: Cheap Trick (1997) by Cheap Trick

April 25, 2017

Our Patreon subscribers helped us pick an album from April of 1997 to review, and thanks to a tie-breaking coin flip, we’re checking out the self-titled Cheap Trick album. It’s actually the second self-titled album from Cheap Trick, the first being their debut from twenty years earlier. To help us dissect this record and provide historical context on this era of the band, we’ve enlisted Colin Gawel of Watershed, League Bowlers and formerly Why Isn’t Cheap Trick In The Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame? to lend a hand.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Say Goodbye

9:12 - Anytime

15:05 - Carnival Game

17:51 - It All Comes Back To You

Outro - You Let A Lotta People Down


#327: Blind Love by Ratcat

April 18, 2017

We’ve reviewed plenty of bands from Australia over the years, but rarely have we revisited an album that boasts a number one single. This week we’re checking out the band Ratcat, and their 1991 album Blind Love, which scored a number one hit on the ARIA charts with “Don’t Go Now.” Contorting the sunny pop of The Beach Boys in a similar fashion to The Jesus and Mary Chain, Ratcat layer on disparate sounds like 60s surf and 80s new wave. It is an interesting combination, but does it work? Tune in to find out.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - That Ain’t Bad

3:34 - History of the Band

9:35 - Yes I Wanna Go

17:37 - That Ain’t Bad

19:19 - Don’t Go Now

Outro - Baby Baby


#326: Roundtable - Sophomore Slump Revisited - Eight Arms To Hold You by Veruca Salt

April 11, 2017

It’s time to revisit another sophomore album from the 1990s and compare it to it’s successful freshman effort. In this case, we’re checking out the 1997 album Eight Arms To Hold You by Veruca Salt, who scored a platinum album and three charting singles with their 1994 debut American Thighs. Though initial sales were strong, after Volcano Girls the singles fell off, and the reviews were not as positive as the first time around. Some pointed the finger at producer Bob Rock, known for his work with big rock and metal acts like Metallica and Motley Crue. But was it really necessary to point any fingers? To determine what went right, what went wrong and how it sounds twenty years later, we’ve assembled a veteran group to for this roundtable: Chip Midnight (Kids Interview Bands), Jeff Takacs (Rocketfuel Podcast) and Jim Kopeny (Chicagoist).

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Volcano Girls

13:58 - Straight

18:49 - The Morning Sad

25:08 - Don’t Make Me Prove It

40:00 - Venus Man Trap

Outro - Shutterbug


#325: Small Speaker Joyland by Violetine

April 4, 2017

This week’s requested review takes us back down under to check out Melbourne, Australia’s Violetine and their 1998 one and only album Small Speaker Joyland. Dual vocals, fuzzy guitars and an urgent rhythm section give Violetine a little something extra, and some quality chorus melodies don’t hurt either. Though the band didn’t make a dent stateside, we think there might be something to this Aussie three piece worth checking out.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Birmingham

14:38 - Surrounded

17:06 - Red

19:20 - Fuzzanova

28:45 - Finer Place

Outro - Any Day


#324: Digging Your Scene - Roundtable Discussion on Los Angeles in the 90s

March 28, 2017

For our next installment of the Digging Your Scene roundtable series, we are exploring sights and sounds of Los Angeles in the 1990s. To help us do so, the following guests joined us:

Brian Klein of Scout B Entertainment - his first time on the show, Brian moved to Los Angeles in the early 90s, starting as an intern at Rick Rubin’s American Recordings label as well as employee of Aron’s Records, he has worked in management and promotion of dozens of bands and currently manages Fitz and The Tantrums among others.

Kellii Scott of Failure - making his third visit (#211 & #239), Kellii moved to LA in the 80s and played in a number of bands before joining Failure, later drumming for Blinker The Star, Campfire Girls, Veruca Salt and more. Failure are currently wrapping up the Pledgemusic campaign for the 20th anniversary live recording of their 1997 album Fantastic Planet.

Shawn Michael Foster, director - also making his third visit (#64 & #236), Shawn moved to LA in the latter half of the 90s and started as music video director for bands such as Stabbing Westward, Chevelle, Sugarcult, Drive-by Truckers and many more. He is currently working on a television pilot and videos for Los Kingdom.

We talk music clubs, weekly papers, records stores and more, plus reminisce about bands starting out that made it big and those that should have but never did, plus muggings, drugs, tangents and more tangents. It’s a lively, loose conversation that would have taken place at the Rainbow Room in 1998 if we had a time machine and a bunch of cash. Also, what’s the coolest thing currently about Ohio according to Kellii Scott, who shares some details on the next Failure album.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - LA Medley (Jane’s Addiction, Weezer, Beck, Rage Against The Machine, Tool)

Outro - Stuck on You by Failure

Previous Episodes Referenced:

#060: Cheer Up by Plexi with Michael Angelos and Michael Barragan

#072: August Everywhere by Blinker The Star with Jordon Zadorozny

#156: Villa Elaine by Remy Zero

#200: Use Your Illusion 1 & 2 by Guns ‘n Roses with Chip Midnight

#201: Interview with Bill Janovitz of Buffalo Tom

Be sure to join us at Patreon to listen to bonus content from this episode.


#323: Interview with Eli Janney of Girls Against Boys and the 8G Band

March 21, 2017

This week we get to chat with Eli Janney, who you may know as the keyboardist, bassist and backing vocals in Girls Against Boys. You may also know him as the producer for such bands as Brainiac, Ryan Adams, Skeleton Key, Jesse Maiin and many more. You may also know him as the man who remixed tracks by artists such as the Sneaker Pimps, Ruby, Hooverphonic, Enon and more. You may also know him as the current keyboardist and associate music director in the 8G Band on Late Night with Seth Meyers. What we’re saying is, Eli is a busy guy, because that doesn’t even include his music engineering and mixing credits, as well as his other work in television and film. We talk to about how he ended up in the world of late night television all the way back to his time working at the legendary Inner Ear recording studio with Don Zientara that documented so much of the ‘80s DC punk and hardcore scene. We learn how GVSB formed, the trials of a touring with a keyboard in 1992, and what it means to be in a band with a distinct and recognizable “sound” and how that both focuses and restricts creativity. All this and much, much more.

Songs in this Episode:

Intro - Let Me Come Back

Outro - Boogie Wonderland