Five Songs, 6/24/2017
I think it's been a bit since I've mentioned tools, so I'll bring them up. The key thing I've been using to upload music is this MP3 to FLV converter. There are a bunch out there, but the others I've tried have been flaky or slow. This one has the tremendous advantage of pulling the cover art from the tags on the MP3, which saves a step of finding separate cover art. It also has the advantage of not being flaky or slow.
For converting from M4A to MP3 (which I often have to do), I've been using this tool. Again, there are a bunch of alternatives, but this seems to be pretty solid.
(NB: as per my policy, when I hit something that is blocked on copyright grounds, I'll do a sixth writeup here, so there are still five songs to listen to for you.)
KMFDM, "Leibseleid (Infringement Mix)"
Industrial dance outfits like KMFDM had a bad habit of releasing stuff in about nineteen different forms, with remixes and repackaging happening in a bewildering array of formats and regions. In this case, though, this version of "Leibseleid" isn't due to that annoying habit, but instead due to copyright infringement issues with the original. The entire album Naive, probably KMFDM's best work, had to be pulled and re-worked due to sample problems with multiple songs on it. The new version, dubbed Naive/Hell To Go, isn't as good as the original, alas.
At some point, I lost a box of assorted CDs. Included in that was a bunch of early KMFDM albums, which I suddenly find myself missing just a little bit. Ah well.
Mustard Plug, "Send You Back"
Yet another third-wave ska band, sounding much like the rest. Do you want to know what distinguishes Mustard Plug in my brain? Here's what sticks in my head about Mustard Plug.
One of the worst nights of my life was when I got a call in Seattle that my father, who was suffering from brain cancer, had taken a turn for the worse and they weren't sure how long he was going to live. The call came in late, maybe 11 at night, on a rainy night. I hopped in my car and started driving right away. Speeding down the interstate through the rain in the middle of the night, I had to put on music to distract me from the possibility that I might not actually get to see my father alive again. Among the handful of CDs in the car was a Mustard Plug album, the last time I remember listening to them, sobbing through the third-wave during that nightmare of a drive to Spokane.
And, of course, the video is blocked on copyright grounds. Lovely.
Uzeda, "Ten Stars"
Italian noise rockers Uzeda are notable for having a female vocalist, a rarity in this sub genre. Taking a page straight out of the Jesus Lizard's book on the musical side, this entire album (Different Section Wires) is an excellent listen.
Tenement, "Foreign Phrase"
Tenement is a great name for a band. The band in question is a garage-y, punk-y kind of pop band that could have used some editing on this album. The high points are very good, mind you, and I do recommend it, but 25 tracks could really have been edited down to a much tighter set.
Samiam, "Blank Expression"
Another early song from melodic punk act Samiam, which falls short of the heights they would later soar to, but is still fun.
There's often this contrast between Kurt Wagner's voice and the instrumentation that I find it hard to put my finger on, but I always find lovely. This is from No, You C'mon, one of two new albums they released on the same day (Aw C'mon being the other). To answer the question, no, I don't know which is better or why they were released as separate albums instead of a double album. They're both very good, though, as befits one of the most consistently excellent bands of the American underground.