In a similar vein to our Sacred Bones features, this week we've got a batch of fantastic singles from Italy's always dependable Goodbye Boozy imprint. Like a spiritual cousin from across the Atlantic, GB's sound runs the gamut from lilliputian folk to scuzzy garage rock to full-on psych freak-outs and every nook and cranny in-between. This particular clutch of releases is heavy on the nuclear power and the speed, and two of the three releases feature Mikal Cronin, he of the awesome Charlie & the Moonhearts, who's new single will get some love in the coming weeks. As far as we know, all of these titles are sold out from the label (they are all limited to 300 copies), but familiar distros like Florida's Dying and Goner Records should still have a few copies floating around.
We get things kick-started this week with the debut offering from Val Verde, Ca trio Okie Dokie, and their “Badhammer” b/w “Power” single. The A-Side sounds like a lo-fi scumbag (even more so) garage version of Ministry's “Jesus Built My Hotrod”, what with its compacted drum machine snarl, incomprehensible digital barf vocal FX and uber-compressed guitars. The flipside goes even further into ancient Wax Trax territory; a cranked-off, minute-and-a-half jolt of nonsensical muttering into a vocoder while twin robots tear the asylum to pieces in the backdrop. The whole single is over in just over 3 minutes, which, only leaves you with more time to play it over and over and over again. Even in a pack this stacked, this single is a particular standout. Here's to hoping their forthcoming release on Aagoo is more of the same.
To wash that down we've got another debut single, this one from new Memphis powerhouse Useless Eaters, “Agoraphobic” b/w “Information Freak” & “Medicate the Children”. What you get here are three rocket fuel-drenched bash 'n' pop punk songs with surprising bolts of melody shot through their snot noses. As you might expect, being from Memphis, they are unabashed disciples of the Jay Reatard school of hook-riddled punk (they even have a single forthcoming on his Shattered imprint), and nowhere is that more evident than on bratty romp “Medicate the Children”, with its blown-out vocals and jaggedly infectious guitars. The guitar roiling A-Side is a hit waiting to happen, not to mention a perfect kick-in-the-teeth summer anthem to scare those annoying neighbors away from your BBQ toot suite.
We end this week with a release from the dynamic duo of Ty Segall & Mikal Cronin, “Pop Song” b/w “So I Went to Beach, Melody” & “Kit Carson”. You might know Ty as the man of a thousand bands, as he seemingly works with everyone on the West Coast and has recently become a member of Sic Alps, as well as a touring member of Thee Oh Sees. Mikal is no slouch himself, working with at least 4-5 bands we can think of off the top of our head. The most casual of this release batch, the three tunes here are all economical, hook-laden surf-garage-pop that Jonathan Richmond or The Clean would be proud to call their own. However, its definitely a grower, and the songs themselves have a low-key charm that simply cannot be faked, but nevertheless, it's not nearly as immediate a bolt to the pleasure zones as these fellas' other outfits, or that we're used to hearing from them, for that matter.
While the weather might not be cooperating, the calendar now officially says summer, and in that spirit, next week will find us neck-deep in a gaggle of sun-drenched pop confections to keep your turntable spinning while the grill's fired-up and the pool is a perfect 80 degrees. You bring the burgers, we'll provide the platters.