August 21, 2007

Guest post: Chris from North Carolina is a mixmaster across the miles

It’s kinda Guest Post Central around here lately with a few fine folks taking my place for a day. This is a very good thing for you, the reader, because all my friends have excellent musical taste. Obviously.

A few weeks ago I got a package from Chris out in North Carolina who made me not just one or two but SIX CDs full of genuine marvelousness that I am still digesting. Chris sends me some humid North Carolina greetings, and writes the following; “I often (morbidly) tell my wife Janet that if anything ever happens to me, she must check out your site to update her musical stylings.”

Due to flattery like that (ha!) and the sheer enjoyment I derived from his mixes, today I am going to share five of Chris’ picks with you off his first themed mix, along with his comments. There’s probably several other posts in the coming months from the stuff he sent me; honorary guest residency status out of this batch. I never tire of hearing the world through someone else’s ears.

(sort of a loose collective of Rolling-Stones-disciple tunes)

The Figures of Art – Spoon
I saw Spoon open for a friend’s (kinda crappy) band in a tiny Mexican restaurant in Chapel Hills 10 yrs ago when they still wanted to be the Pixies. Love the Stonesy-intro riff here, and I’m thrilled they decided they’d just rather be Spoon.

Too Bad – Faces
Speaking of The Stones, I really don’t get how FM radio in the Midwest played the hell out of the Stones, but missed out on everything by these guys except “Stay With Me.” I cannot think of anyone in modern history who has had access to more good, clean, hedonistic fun than Rod and he sings like it.

Bohemian Like You – The Dandy Warhols
If you have not caught DiG, it is a must-see ["A documentary on the once-promising American rock bands The Brian Jonestown Massacre and The Dandy Warhols, and the friendship/rivalry between their respective founders, Anton Newcombe and Courtney Taylor"]. Brian Jonestown Massacre is such a compelling story of a band and they obviously loved the Stones too, but they’d think it was beneath them to play quite so accessibly. I don’t care if it is a ripoff with at-times insipid lyrics, it rocks anyway.

Don’t Look Back Into The Sun – The Libertines
Much like my favorite band The Replacements, I do not see how the Libertines decided which songs to leave off their albums. This b-side is by far my favorite of their tunes.

Ca Plane Pour Moi – Plastic Bertrand
European Vacation featured this song way back in the day and I’ve always thought of it, perhaps unfairly, as a French Ramones song.

BONUS, as I love the mixery technique of sandwiching in a little dialogue snippet or something cool between the songs; Chris used this as track 8:
“Do You Feel Your Music Is Racist?” – This Is Spinal Tap

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  • i recently discovered faces, too, and i looked this up to be sure–it’s just “faces,” not “the faces.” just, fyi! :)

    Katie — August 21, 2007 @ 4:36 pm

  • Thanks, m’dear!

    heather — August 21, 2007 @ 4:49 pm

  • Hello Heather,

    Plastic Bertrand is evertything but a “french ramones”.

    He is a kind of “has-been” guy who sang just one song (this one), became famous… and disapeared.

    It has been a big success in Night Clubs and kindergarden yards and is nothing but Disco.

    Then the english cover by The Damned (Jet Boy Jet Girl), and the ones by President of The USA, Sonic Youth and even The Red Hot Chili Peppers on (stage) gave it a punk colour.

    But Plastic (what a Show Business name don’t you think ?) is nothing but one hit -not even – wonder who played the punk.

    cf :

    Greetings from Paris, France.

    I Love your blog.
    Long Live to You !!!


    DNFOW — August 22, 2007 @ 2:36 am

  • Tsk, tsk. “Don’t Look Back Into The Sun” wasn’t a b-side – it was a double-A sided single. Which, I suppose, is just me being pedantic. It’s a great tune though.

    lism. — August 22, 2007 @ 3:48 am

  • “Ca plane pour moi” is one of the greatest songs of all time. I am not joking. Richard Thompson shows his incredible intelligence and taste by covering this and the Left Banke’s “She May Call You Up Tonight”.

    The Paris, France correspondent is right, though, Plastic Bertrand is just a poser. The album with Ca Plane has a couple other good ones, but for some stupid reason I also picked up a couple of his other LPs. Played once and filed.


    P.S. Great music blog, by the way. I end up here all the time. Keep up the Springsteen and Ray Lamontaigne (whose name I just butchered).

    Anonymous — August 22, 2007 @ 6:02 am

  • My God !

    Richard Thompson sang “ça plane pour moi” ?!? I could not find that !? If anyone gets the idea to play that, I am deeply curious to hear it.

    Else, it is scary that this song is one of the most famous french song that you may know here in the US… even if that is “one of the greatest songs of all time” (I just can hear Edith Piaf and Serge Gainsbourg laughing from paradise… ;-) )


    Phil from Paris

    DNFOW — August 22, 2007 @ 7:11 am

  • great mix, all of the way through. i’d be super curious to see what the other songs are on the track list

    Kyle Meredith — August 22, 2007 @ 12:58 pm

  • @ dnfow: Plastic Bertrand is not french but belgian!

    I remember when I was a kid (I think I was 5 or 6 years old when ‘ça plane pour moi’ was released), we used to dance on tables on this song… Yeah!

    Check out some more forgotten belgian classics:
    ‘Fashion party’, Neon Judgement
    ‘Zanna’, Luc Van Acker
    ‘U-men’ Front 242

    Pascal, Brussels.

    Anonymous — August 22, 2007 @ 1:23 pm

  • Good list, but c’mon Chris, no NC bands? We have great stuff. Represent better. Support local music!

    Anonymous — August 22, 2007 @ 4:47 pm

  • Oh Anon….Chris sent me a full CD of North Carolina”ish” bands, called “Southern Comfort Mix.” Just you wait.


    heather — August 22, 2007 @ 5:15 pm

  • Checking back in.

    1. I saw Richard Thompson perform Ca Plane Pour Moi and I have it on a bootleg, live at Columbia (Missouri).

    2. I believe Robert Christgau dubbed Bertrand “the sound of angry, young Belgium”.

    3. Question: Good music stores in Paris? I found one that met my needs, the Jussieu Music branch over there near the Arab Institute and the zoo (whatever it’s called, I’m too lazy to look it up or check spellings, so I am sure I am butcherning the French — apologies to my wife the French teacher). P.S. Love Paris and France in general.

    4. NC bands: Mayflies, USA. The best, unknown American power pop band.


    Anonymous — August 23, 2007 @ 9:37 am

  • Jussieu Music is effectively one of the best place where you can buy, at low price, a lot of good stuffs.

    The zoo you’re talking about is the “Jardin des Plantes”.

    I wish I could hear your bootleg !!!

    And yes Mr Bertrand is from Belgium. Sorry… I thought Front 242 was a fascist band ?

    For me one of the best belgium band of the moment is Sharko. See “President” from them on Dailymotion.

    Hope this conversation won’t bother Heather…


    DNFOW — August 24, 2007 @ 2:42 am

  • Bother Heather? Come on. I love it.

    heather — August 24, 2007 @ 6:27 am

  • Front 242 a fascist band? Years ago I’ve heard that too yes, but I don’t believe a word of it. The accusation was due to the image of the band: frontman Richard 23 always wore a paramilitarian outfit on stage, also: he had a Mohawk haircut…

    Makes me think of George Clinton in a TV show I once saw (forgot if it was with Parliament or Funkadelic): he and the band members were all dressed in Ku Klux Clan sheets. It really looked cool :-) Or remember Venom: a legendary black metal band from Britain. The story went that they were deep into black magic. What is less known is that one day after a show, they were visited by real black magic freaks who wanted to eh… familiarize with the band. They were thrown out immediately… Don’t believe the hype!

    Thanks for the Sharko hint. Never heard of that band before. I hope you guys know Millionaire, also belgian. They sound dirty, “street”… (with thanks to Josh Homme who produced their latest album).

    And to end, two more belgian classics that’ll blow the roof of any party:
    ‘Housewive’, Daan (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
    ‘Assez’, Vive La Fête (stars in France, but in the US?)

    Pascal, Brussels.

    Anonymous — August 24, 2007 @ 10:09 am

  • Yes !! “Millionaire” is an amazing band !

    The former guitarist of dEUS (fantastic dEUS !!!) became one of the best friends of Josh Homme during a festival in belgium… I think it was in Belgium.

    Homme asked him to support QOTSA and then, as they were very friends, they created “Eagle Of Death Metal” (fantastic EODM !!!!!).

    And then, effectively he helped Tim Vanhamel to produce Millionaire.

    This band is realy good but in my opinion they sound too stoner, sometimes “metal”, to get the Belgium touch (as Sharko or dEUS for instance).
    But they are realy good.

    “Bother Heather? Come on. I love it.”
    If you love it, then Madame, this is my pleasure. (to be read with french accent ;-D).

    Phil from Paris

    DNFOW — August 29, 2007 @ 6:12 am

  • If one does not know dEUS, he must listen to that :

    Remember they did it in 1994 !!!
    Major influence of a lot of later american band.

    DNFOW — August 29, 2007 @ 6:22 am

  • @ DNFOW:
    Homme first heard Millionaire while they were playing somewhere in Gent (as I remember, so indeed in Belgium). QOSA were on the same bill that night in fact.
    The story goes that, and that’s no joke, Homme heard them playing while having a pee in the men’s room (or how you say that in english?), got very impressed by what he heard, peed all over his hands because he was too anxious to get away, got out and hurried his way to stage… :-)

    And Millionaire stoner rock? Weird, I don’t hear that at all. Écoute leur premier album Phil… it offers much more. Start with ‘Champagne’: the song has that badass killer riff. Wouldn’t surprise me if it was that song that made Homme lose his cool :-)
    FYI: front man Vanhamel is now working on his first solo album.

    Maybe Heather could post ‘Champagne’…

    Pascal, Brussels.

    Anonymous — August 30, 2007 @ 1:37 pm

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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