Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Billy Mure - Fireworks!

One of Billy Mure's other albums was posted over at Rock Is Dead and for what this blog normally covers, it would make a much better choice. However, Billy Mure has always skirted the edge of exotica and so have I! I first got into record collecting buying (mostly terrible) Hawaiian albums with pretty girls and beaches on the cover. Well, Billy stepped into the deep-end with this one, but at least chose from the best. This is pure Space-Aged-Esquivel Worship, just short of adding z's to the dooooooo-doo-wahs. Still, Billy's guitar is prominent and excellent, with the first tracks on either side falling more into the realm of Super-Sonic guitar.

In fact, wait a second, doesn't Super-Sonic Guitar suggest that we wouldn't be able to hear it?

Anyway if you like Esquivel, Billy emulates him better than anybody I can think of. It's a good album! The rip is pretty nice too, save for one little skip in the very first song. It kills me, and I was looking so hard at the record, cleaning it and recleaning it trying to get that skip out of there. You might not notice it though.

Here's the tracklist, note the writing credits

Side A

  1. Firecrackers (Billy Mure)
  2. I Wonder, I Wonder (Daryl Hutchins)
  3. Peanut Vendor (Simons - Gilbert - Sunshine)
  4. Peg O' My Heart (Alfred Bryan - Fred Fisher)
  5. By The Beautiful Sea (Harry Carroll)
  6. Jealous (Jack Little - Tommy Malie)

Side B

  1. Dancing Guitars (Billy Mure)
  2. Crackerjack (Billy Mure)
  3. For Me And My Gal (Meyer - Leslie - Goetz)
  4. Guitar Theme (Billy Mure)
  5. They Can't Take That Away From Me (Ira and George Gershwin)
  6. April in Portugal (Ferrao - Kennedy - LaRue)


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Earl Washington - Miserlou \ Wolf Call

Back in my WESU radio days, I took a lot of pride in the various ways I jazzed up Storm Surge of Reverb, already an example of irregularity in the station's programming. One of my favorites was "Spring Break Misirlou" in which I prepared two entire shows of nothing but renditions of Misirlou, both before and after Dick Dale, both surf and non. And had some left over.

So I've heard a lot of renditions of this song. I ran soulseek dry and googled the living crap out of it. I'm sure you've heard plenty too, and though I welcome you to prove me wrong, I bet you've never heard a blues version.

Earl Washington's version of Misirlou probably bares more resemblance to Martin Denny's than Dick Dale's, but it also precedes the dickster's by about 4 years. It's weird for sure, jazzy piano over a blues progression and opera-like singing. It's kind of hard to give it a genre, which is the case for the best music.

Wolf Call is a much more straightforward upbeat blues instrumental. It reaffirms to you that he's a Checker artist, but it didn't inspire me to check out the rest of his work
Wolf Call

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Safaris - Kick Out \ Lonely Surf Guitar

Confused people think The Safaris were responsible for Wipe-Out. Curious googlers might find that The Safaris were a doo-wop group. But somewhere I determined that these Safaris released some badass surf rock. By some, I mean not much. From what I've been able to gather, this 45 is...uh... all there is to gather.

But seriously, this is a serious 45. As you can tell from the picture, it deserves a better quality rip, but it's clear enough for you to understand that this is a really great 45
Kick Out

Lonely Surf Guitar is a slow number, which in surf rock I've always thought was harder to do well. Well, I played this side instead of the A side on my show last week, so there you go
Lonely Surf Guitar

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Other blog watch

So I had a sort of "secret weapon" by The Goofers that I was ready to post but somebody beat me to the punch. Sure, they weren't really spotlighting the song, but it's a much better quality version than I would have posted. In fact, I've been calling it "surf rock with bagpipes" until I heard an actual non-scratchy-45 version which, well you'll see. Then again... my side didn't say Take 2! I might give it another listen. Regardless, it's really fun, and while I'm posting the MP3's I got from his blog post, the entire album can be got at Be Bop Wino's blog. It's a cool album, check it out. But if you just want to hear the Goofers, here's your shortcut.

The Goofers - Scotch on the Rocks (take 2)

The Goofers - Head Hunters is jungle themed, this time I'm pretty sure. This is always cool in my book

I would post a picture of the label but I'm on a ski trip.

Meanwhile, Kahuna Kawentzmann made an excellent post recently with all sorts of incredible links of the history of surfing. Not much about the music, but I'm always digging for some of the pictures you can get in those links.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Kent and the Candidates - Go High

I will tell you straight off why this single is great: on Go High, these two men have recently fallen on hard times with their women and decide (real quote here) "Well let's get out of this place!" "I know, let's take a rocketship to outer space!" It's like people write this stuff with my blog in mind, I swear.

Go High

The Neck is probably the more danceable song out of the two and the one I've seen mention of more often. From what I understand, our friends are checking out a party, scoping out all the familiar friends and characters and Tall Timmy with NO REGARD for the safety of his peers, breaks out doing The Neck, after which the song mostly inquires about your own ability to perform this hazardous dance move.

The Neck

Storm Surge 3 Today (Friday)


Last show in this timeslot. After that.... who knows!

Going to be throwing on a ton of 7"s this time.

stream at

edit: Here's the playlist!

the volcanos - krakatoa

lost acapulco - ven perrita
al casey - el aguila (the easle)
telekrimen - la mosca
the hellbenders - sabata
the lively ones - mexico
i cosmonauti - (death of a) Matador
the concaves - li'l walquin
rockin' rebels - wild weekend
the gems - shutdown
the weisstronauts - sir wacky

rat holic - yu-hi
los pataconas - spiderman
the deuce coupes - skin diver (that might be wrong....)
johnny zorro - bongo guitar
maracca five-oh - gidget's guns
sultans of jungle - no looking back
the introducers = surf fever
the safaris - lonely surf guitar
Doctor A-Go-Go - hot girlie action
the virtues - Guitar Boogie Shuffle
bambi molesters - alpha e

krontjong devils - land beyond the moon
the bills - organ stomp
the archers - hybrid moments
ghastly ones - ghastly stomp
Man...or Astro-Man? - transmissions from Venus
avengers VI - time bomb
the staggers - eagle surf
tornados - robot
the hangee V - Space Rat
Dr. Frankenstein's laboratory - music to murder girls by
i fantomatici - orgasmo intergalattico

southern culture on the skids - dance for me
aqua velvets - casbah club
the chantays - pipeline
the royal pendletons - nites along the mississippi
the bomboras - surfin' bull

Blue Stingrays - Ju Ju Beads
The Techniques - Dream Theme
The Treble Spankers - Enola Gay
The Routers - Mashy

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Johnny Phelps - Tom Katt \ None So Fair (As My Fair Lady)

I was immediately drawn to this 45, but I think it was just because it was on the "Ski" record label and I thought "skiing is nice". So logically Ski Records is based in skiing hub of the world Indianapolis, Indiana and according to this site didn't make much else. A bummer since Tom Katt is a great rockabilly number from 1958, certainly enhanced by a many cat meows throughout the song.
Tom Katt

None So Fair (As My Fair Lady) isn't really as fun, but gets stuck in your head pretty well.
None So Fair (As My Fair Lady)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Colleen and her Schoolmates -

We will take a brief detour away from Rock & Roll today because I've got something really kitschy and strange and nowhere else to put it. Colleen and her Schoolmates essentially sounds like a kindergarden teacher singing with her kids. This is the sort of stuff that you grab samples from and put into other music (if it weren't for the fuzziness). Or maybe just stick in the middle of a radio show in hopes to unsettle. I know I will.

Apparently Mr. Previous-owner/DJ liked Mairzy Doats more. In fact, given the amount of checks on this, I wonder if this was once going out on the Louisiana airwaves in an unironic manner. If so, YES.
Mairzy Doats

Personally, I think "My Heart is on a Merry-Go-Round" is the song for the thoroughly modern listener, with disonant stacato piano grouping with yelling kids allowing for a much stranger listen.
My Heart Is On A Merry-Go-Round

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Porky Harris & His Fantabulous Five - Porkypine \ Pigpen

I don't know what's up today, I don't have any stupid comments to write about this mystery band with a stupid name. I guess it's all kinda laid out for you. Dude somehow earned the nickname Porky and went wild with it, made a single. Did he ever make another one? Not that the internet has been finding for me. The closest thing I've found is a discography of Crystalette 45s which would indicate "no, he didn't", though finally for one of these 45s I've got a date: 1958

So soak up the Porky Harris you've got here, you won't get any more. Porky Pine is plain ol' instrumental R&B with plenty of wailin' saxamaphone

Pig Pen is a similar deal, though employing the wondeful instrumental tactic of stopping the music to announce the name of the song, sorta like Church Key. A note though, there was one tiny little bump of scum on the 45 that I couldn't get out. I've tried to doctor the skip it produced but it doesn't sound TOTALLY natural. But unless somebody else has this 45 (and ebay searches don't make it seem too promising) this is all you're going to get.
Pig Pen

Monday, January 12, 2009

John Anthony & The Saturn Expedition - Theme for Apollo 11 \ Tel-star

The last time I cried in a movie wasn't Benjamin Butthead or whatever, it was watching the Discovery Channel series "When We Left Earth". And it wasn't when one of those brave astronauts died or anything like that, it was when we landed on the moon. When you sit down and watch a ton of documentaries on space travel (which is all I did at the beginning of this summer), you get in the mindset of these people, the work they were doing and the goal they were trying to achieve. And when they finally did it, it was so beautiful. I think it's lost on people my age since we grew up having done it, but landing on that other rock is something that shouldn't even seem possible, but we did it and it's the most significant thing we've done as a species.

So I certainly can't blame John Anthony here for making this 45 and I can't blame myself for buying it. I saw it in a corner of Jim Russel Records, and thought about rocket ships, surf music (given the cover of Telstar), and the fact that since this is a New Orleans 45 (or so the Jim Russell employee seemed to think, despite knowing nothing else about it) this would finally be one of the few posts that satisfies the three pillars of RRHHWW: New Orleans, Rock & Roll and Sci-Fi.

As much as I love Telstar, I think the A side here is the real winner. When it says theme it means it; this is fully orchestrated and really only borderline Rock & Roll. It would sound really appropriate as a TV Theme song, not that I think that's a bad thing at all. The beauty of these 45 posts is that I don't have to blurb all that much, you can just click right there.
Theme For Apollo 11

The Telstar cover is good, but it's hard to out-outer-space Joe Meek. And if you're looking to do that, making it jazzier won't be the way to do it. Still, who doesn't love hearing this song?

Also to anybody reading this thread thinking "this idiot thinks we landed on the moon" I'd like to ask that you not spoil my movie, jerk.

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Raiders - Walking Through The Jungle \ My Steady Girl PLUS Del-fi Jungle Jive!

I don't know about the rest of y'all, but even ignoring the possible Paul Revere connection, a band named "The Raiders" is hard to pass up. That's a name that wants ADVENTURE! They're RUDE! Well, I don't really know much about these Raiders. I don't know if they're the same Raiders as Paul Revere and the Raiders, but I know I have one great and strange single on my hands.

The B-Side is another stupid ballad with dee-doo-bee-doos
My Steady Girl

But the A side is a hoot. One of those rare moments where raucous garage rock met exotica (keep in mind though, I have no clue when this single was from). Screaming, jungle noises, complete disregard of any notions of "good music".
The Raiders - Walking Through The Jungle

Listening to it I thought of this excellent compillation on excellent label Del-Fi. Full of strange (sometimes vaguely) jungle related songs. Noticing it's out of print, I figured I'd throw it up here. As far as I can tell Kari Wuhrer has no real involvement in this album other than as a model (who knows, maybe she compiled it!) but I've always suspected that she's a pretty groovy girl. What's lame is that I formed that opinion from her role as Tanya in the Command and Conquer video games. Ignoring Kari, as hard as that is, this is one of my favorite comps, and I'm usually pretty honest about what I put on here.

(I copied and pasted this tracklist from I got things to do, OK?)
1. Seduction - Voices Of Africa ~ Various Artists
2. Swahili - Bob Keene Orchestra ~ Various Artists
3. Native Love - The Enchanters ~ Various Artists
4. Jungle Fever - The Shadows ~ Various Artists
5. Beachcomber Song - The Rockyfellers ~ Various Artists
6. Moonglow Cha Cha Cha - The Executives ~ Various Artists
7. Rum And Coca Cola - Pepino ~ Various Artists
8. Bongo Twist - Preston Epps (previously unreleased) ~ Various Artists
9. Karate Again - The Bedwells ~ Various Artists
10. Night Rain - Voices Of Africa ~ Various Artists
11. Warsaw Concerto - The Philharmonics ~ Various Artists
12. Woman Needs Man - The Rockyfellers ~ Various Artists
13. Mandarin Mambo - Pepino ~ Various Artists
14. On The Alamo - The Executives ~ Various Artists
15. La Cubalibra - Rene Hall's Orchestra ~ Various Artists
16. Terror - The Grippers (previously unreleased) ~ Various Artists
17. On The Ginza - Yo Yo Hashi ~ Various Artists
18. Uprising - Voices Of Africa ~ Various Artists

Anne Hear's The Link

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Bobby Lord - Sack \ The Fire of Love

This new collection of 45s is really helping me brush up on my rockabilly. Bobby Lord isn't exactly a nobody, according to Wikipedia he was on the Grand Ole Opry for years and has recorded plenty of singles, though not much in the way of an LP. That wikipedia page is all I've got.

Which is disappointing because "Sack" is a pretty strange song. Double entendre isn't anything rare in rock & roll, so one might assume that it's, ya know, that sack, especially when he talks about having fruit inside and giving the fruit to you (a girl). OK, so if that's the case, what's the deal with the specifics? He's got apples, oranges, cherries, berries in that sack, what is the significance here? Does he say he's going "Tooty" over you?
Bobby Lord - Sack

The Fire of Love is another stupid ballad, falling more in line with doo-wop than the Country & Western style he's known for. The over-excited female voice gives this just enough quirk for me to begrudgingly admit that I kinda like it.
Bobby Lord - The Fire of Love

Another Storm Surge of Reverb is on tomorrow


Friday @ 2-4 CST or 91.5 if you're in NOLA

I admit, I've been holding back a little on these 45s because I've got some seriously fun instrumentals that I want to break out on the show before I throw them on here.

EDIT: PLAYLIST! Those ones with stars are among the upcoming 45s

Reverend Organdrum - Moovin' N' Groovin'

The Sea Lions - Hevenu Shalom Alechem
The volcanics - Fury Stomp
El Ray - Danger of TV Radiation
The Masonics - Galloping Goblin
The Royaltones - Wail! *
Wild Sammy And the Royaltones - Road Runner
The Novas - Number 7
The Bills - The Maggot
Los Coronas - Manic Hotdoggers
the impacts - wipe out
laika & the cosmonauts - SPYDA's web

Ventures - War of the Satellites
Madeira - SOS
Bob & Jerry - Ghost Satellite *
Robert Johnson & The Punchdrunks Spy vs. Spy
John Anthony & The Saturn Expedition - Theme for Apollo 11 *
Johnny & The Shamen - Mr. Hide
MOAM - War of the Satellites
Atlantics - SOS

Dick Dale - Xodus
The Goofers - Scotch on the Rocks *
The El Caminos - Pachuko Soul
The Sentinals - Big Surf
Lonnie Mack - Memphis

The Surfers - Widget
Wiggles and Waggles - Hey Mr. Hoolihan *
The (Fabulous) Wailers - The Wailer
Porky Harris & His Fantabulous Five - Pig Pen *
Goggle-A - Ride on Yamaha
Mach Kung Fu - Singapore 66
Huevos Rancheros - Trouble's A Brewin'
Famous Monsters - Monsters over Tokyo
Jay Holiday & The Giants - The Stalk *
Fifty Foot Combo - I think I shot Her

Spring Break Shark Attack
Thee Cormans - The Number Six
The Crossfires - Fiberglass Jungle
Satan's Pilgrims - Surf Lyre
Agent Orange - Pipeline (request)
Phantom Surfers - Big Screen Spectacular Tonight
Barbwires - Blood on the Waves
Krontjong Devils - apres ski

Five Outsiders - Straight Jacket
Treble Spankers - The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
The Fathoms - The Palomino

(and while holding it down for the next DJ, The Tornados - Globetrotter and The Marketts - Out of Limits)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Coeds - La La \ Juke Box!

My new treasure trove of 45s has yielded a lot of strange finds, but I was in the mood for something especially good today. Though I think the coeds are so named because they feature both a boy and a girl singing, often to each other, there's something else going on. This isn't really straightforward rock & roll, I'd only categorize it that way by default, the same way I would bands like The Monks or The Honeycombs. Now I don't know if these songs will drive you wild in the same way, but "La La" has an otherworldliness to it that reminds me more of The Pixies than any band of this era. Despite the playful nature of this single, "juke box!" features much more serious drumming than just about any other Rock & Roll song I've heard and it's put to great use. For once, I can't pick a favorite, as there doesn't appear to be a ballad on either side!

As always, comments on the band are welcome, as I can't seem to find much. 

The Coeds - La La

The Coeds - Juke Box!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Jack Hammer - Girl, Girl, Girl / Chant of Love

While excitedly digging through my new crate of 45s on the way back home to listen to them, one 45 stuck out to me the most:

You see, a friend had introduced me to the song "The Wiggle", which he had found off the now out-of-print-and-highly-downloadable-upon-googling "Las Vegas Grind" compilations. I was stupid in love with that song, it was my cellphone ring and I tried to shove it on everybody I encountered, most of whom just kind of looked at me funny. Yes, of course you can listen to it, it's right here, though this is not my rip.
The Wiggle

Learning somewhere that he was born in New Orleans, I've been looking for more Jack Hammer everywhere. I've been able to track down digital copies of "Wiggling Fool" and "Twist Talk", both of which are top notch, and if I were to shell out $50 I could get "The Best of Jack Hammer" off of Amazon's online shops, which would include Girl, Girl, Girl, but not Chant of Love. Just tracking down information on Jack Hammer is pretty tough; thinks he's South African, though this page has much more information. Oh if only those songs were ripped.

As for these songs

"Girl, Girl, Girl" is still frantic, though which a bit more rockabilly than a twisting sound. I don't think it really holds up to insanity of songs like "The Wiggle" but for what it is, it's a great track.Girl, Girl, Girl

Chant of Love is a slow ballad, which rarely works for me and, to be honest, I don't find that exciting when Jack Hammer does it either. It is a little odd, backing up a slightly atonal and sappy melody with deep male voices singing "ZOOMMMMM". The DJ that originally owned this record, underlined the title, which I assume means he liked it, so there's your second opinion.

Chant of Love

Ripping 45s or Why This Blog Is Going To Be Pretty Good For A While

Brandonio over at Rock is Dead R.I.P. was urging me in a recent thread to post some more ripped 45s. While I was planning on doing some eventually, the great Craigslist god was listening and put up a post in Baton Rouge for ~200 45s "from the 50s and 60s". In the free section. So I hauled my butt over there yesterday and picked them up and, as I was warned, a lot are in pretty poor shape... but mostly cosmetically. In fact, most of these sound better than the haul I had on Saturday (which also yielded a few gems). I've only gone through about 40 or so, but from looking there's a ton of great rockabilly, a few instrumentals though not necessarily surf, and a bunch of other weird things that I might put up here for giggles. Going through, I've been keeping about 3/4 of them. Oddly enough, not many of these are big names at all, but I really don't think this is somebody's refuse pile, since a lot of these fetch double-digit prices online. And they're great. I don't really need to give you examples here, because we're going to listen to those examples for a pretty good while on this blog.

But I want to go back to Brandonio's comment for a second. I've tried doing youtube videos for 45s in the past and I'm probably not going to bother with that, but a lot of the 45s I have are out of print but available elsewhere on the internet. I don't want to steal another blog's thunder by reposting their stuff (I know, who am I kidding?), but Youtube videos might be a different story, since you can't save the music as easily, not to mention sound quality issues. 

So what are your thoughts?

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Rob Schneider is a pretty good rockabilly vocalist

We live in a very strange world.

I don't know how this came to pass, I don't even particularly like the Night Marchers, but I gotta hand it to everybody involved, that's pretty fun

thanks to HDNMD crew member Daryl Fucking Hall

Friday, January 2, 2009

Storm Surge of Reverb RETURNS TO RADIO

As I've said on here before a few times I've regularly been DJing at Tulane's radio station for a while, pulling out random 7"s and CDs that look interesting. Usually it tends to be about 4 garage songs and then one latin number. That's all fine and dandy, but I miss doing shows that really mattered to me, like my old surf show I was doing at WESU

So it's time to bring it back. one problem: WTUL isn't as loose about their "specialty genre" programming. I tried applying for a surf show in the fall but couldn't make the meeting. My e-mails asking if there was something else I could do were ignored. 

So here I am DJing while Tulane students are out on break, doing two shows per week. A few weeks ago I sent out another e-mail about how I'd like to do a surf show. Again, ignored. I figure it's time for a little civil disobedience, so while it will be slightly on the down-low, I'm bringing my show back come hell or hurricane water (looking forward to the show title making more sense now). The catch is.... I only have this slot until the Tulane students come back, which is until the 16th I believe. That's two shows, and after that we'll see what happens. 

I'm going to post the playlist here afterwards, but if you want to see old ones or whatever, here are some links

WESU's forums

Surfguitar101 forums


here's the playlist

the dynotones - gear grinder (beach party a-go-go) 
the barbwires - the cheater (searider) 
robert johnson and the punchdrunks - ali pang (fried on the altar of good taste) 
the mummies - the thing from venus (never been caught) 
link wray and the wraymen - new studio blues (slinky! the epic sessions) 
rat holic - good grief (wipe out with) 
the shadows - theme for young lovers (shadows are go!) 
the centurians - intoxica (bullwinkle pt. 2) 
the apemen - surf dracula (sounds of the apemen) 

fifty foot combo - le dimanche matin (caffeine) 
messer chups - Anton La Vey 66.6 FM (crazy price) 
tremolo beer gut - death valley '69 (while squaresville is watching from afar) 
the original surfaris - bombora (surf monsters) 
hawaii samurai - ali baba (the octopus incident) 
the bomboras - war of the satellites (head shrinkin' fun) 
the coffin daggers - cruel sea (the coffin daggers) 
the astronauts - the hearse (competition coupe) 
the raybeats - the backstroke (guitar beat) 
the moe greene specials - $1000 ride pt 2 (the moe greene specials) 
the razorblades - longboard queen (the dark side of the beach) 
johnny and the hurricanes - red river rock (featuring red river rock) 

mustang voodoo surf - the good, the bad, and the ugly (guitaro loco) 
stereophonic space sound unlimited - theme from "the organizer" (plays lost TV themes) 
ramblin' ambassadors - cupcakes de milo (vista cruiser county squire) 
the ventures - go-go dancer (a-go-go) 
the windows - bikini bra in surf (promotional) 
the phantom surfers - the beach girls and the monster (the music from the big-screen spectaculars) 
the astronettes - firewaters of alpha gabba (astronettes) 
longboard ranch - bejal (rides again!) 
kayama yuzo with nokie edwards - crazy driving (kayama yuzo with nokie edwards) 
sandy nelson and the sin city termites - lock it in (nelsonized) 
eddie angel - police raid on toe rag (guitar party) 

bo diddley - diddling (Is A Gunslinger) 
Ike Turner & the Kings of Rhythm - twistin' the strings (ike's instrumentals) 
The Royal Pendletons - keg tapper 
the spotnicks - rocket man (live 62) 
the surfites - comet's tail (escapades in space) 
the kingsmen - come home baby (volume 3) 
the kickstands - haulin' honda (black boots and bikes) 
the squares - congo square (get hip?!!) 
the supertones - scrambler (surf fever 2000) 
Dick Dale & his del-tones - mr. peppermint man (45) 

I don't remember what I played after that, I was just filling time until the next DJ came, but I remember I played a new Madeira song, Space Cossacks, and then to keep it going, Twang! Marvels - Return of the Space Cossack. Also The Champs - Meet me at the Clubhouse, Langhorns... maybe that's it? 

Thanks for listening those of you who did

Thursday, January 1, 2009

It's the end of 2008, here's my list.

Music lists are a very fun to craft exercise in self-indulgence. After 2007 made me sort of hate music, 2008 was so full of great albums that I'm constantly finding myself remembering things that belonged on this list.

Especially cool about this year: indie rock is struggling. The Flaming Lips sound, especially that vocal style, and wimpy music was getting less and less prominent, and the hip eye turned toward cool stuff like African funk compilations (not represented here, but I'm not sure if those count as new music). Funk is coming back in a big way, and I suspect that with the internet and its infinite means of exposure, it's not going to be a fad.

Rock & Roll had a pretty strong year as well. While garage rock still seems to be going in the direction of lo-fi punk rather than 60's influenced stomps, there were some notable efforts. I don't know if I'd say surf rock is on the rise, but I'll be damned if surf musicians didn't put their best feet forward. The Barbwires are the glaring example here, but even the Raveonettes feature an ex-Tremolo Beer Gut guitarist, and I can certainly hear that influence on the album.

1 .Barbwires - Searider

Let's face it: Surf is a formulaic genre. While exciting things are happening to change that, many bands are happy to work within that. Over 40 years after surf's heyday, The Barbwires not only perfect that formula, but decorate it in ways we've never seen. This is THE surf album I will recommend to people if they were to buy one. I waited all year for it and was only amazed to find that it surpassed my expectations.

2. Raveonettes - Lust Lust Lust

The first couple of listens to this album were a complete letdown considering that Pretty In Black still finds its way into my CD player all the time. Over the summer, though, it clicked! Maybe with graduating and moving out into the world, I found comfort hearing these teenage love songs -- the teenage part being operant here. Underneath all the sap there's an awesome sense of defiance and, uh, lust lust lust. 

3. Don Cavalli - Cryland

Don Cavalli was the most refreshing thing I heard in my entire time as a music director. He's french, but sounds like a septegenarian cajun seriously abusing his wa-wa pedal playing the blues. At first listen it sounds terrible, but it wins you over in just a few minutes. You will love Don Cavalli.

4. The Magnetic Fields - Distortion

Before I enjoyed the other Jesus and Mary Chain tribute band's album (see #2), I was listening to this on repeat. I can do without whiny Magnetic Fields just fine, I like this band for albums like this, where I can get the entire thing stuck in my head.

5. Nomo - Ghost Rock

Nomo blend post-rock and afrobeat so well you'd never think there was any difference between them. Great to dance to, but sitting back and listening works just fine as well.

6. Fucked Up  - The Chemistry of Common Life

Hidden World briefly reminded me that I loved being punk, and Chemistry of Common Life did it all over again, maybe a little harder. And with bongos.

7. Steinski - Retrospective

Party rappin'! I listen to this with the same mindset I do when I listen to Grandmaster Flash and others from that era. And there's so much of it too!

8. Quintron - Thirsty 4 Love

Is it that much different than his last album? No. but probably a little more solid. Quintron's melding of his own organ-fueled dance music with older R&B stylings is one of the reasons I'm so proud to live in New Orleans. Pure rock & roll.

9. Ramblin' Ambassadors - Vista Cruiser County Squire

Oh speaking of pure rock & roll, the the Ramblin' Ambassadors play dry-toned raunchy surf with at full adrenaline level. They've sharpened their craft enough that I think they put older Huevos Rancheros albums to shame.

10. Cheap Time - Cheap Time

I sharpied "Exploding Hearts" over the title and though it's not exactly the same, I can pretend just fine. This album is pure fun.

11. Chicha Libre - Sonido Amazonico

This album really succeeds mostly because your average listener (or at least this one) is not familiar with the Chicha music these surf veterans are trying to emulate. Some of these are straight covers of excellent songs, but whether or not it's all their stuff, it's a great listen.

12. Ratatat - LP3

Ratatat had a really good sound going, for their past few albums and they were doing very well with it. For LP3, though, they gave it a full overhaul. The results are great and it gives me a little more respect for their ability to craft a song, whereas the other albums seemed like copied and pasted riffs that they had found the right combination for. 

13. Menahan Street Band - Menehan Street Band

Some of Daptone's finest tone it down a little, but play expertly. I especially love "The Contender"

14 .Pierced Arrows - Pierced Arrows

This is essentially a Dead Moon album. It's the same guys, so you can expect the same quality.

15. Quiet Village - Silent Movie

If only more albums paid homage to Martin Denny. While I wouldn't go in expecting straight-up exotica, everybody loves an artist in the vein of The Avalanches

16. Working For A Nuclear Free City - Business Men and Ghosts

Almost every review I've seen for this album says "it's been done before, but it's done well". That's about right, but they've even stretched this "done before" sound of shoegaze, radiohead and chemical brothers-esque songs into two full CDs well worth listening to. 

17. Thee Oh Sees - The Master's Bedroom is Worth Spending a Night In

I love their brand of psych-surf-garage. Not everything on here is gold, but it gets extra points for being a really strange listen.

18. Black Mountain - In The Future

Black Mountain remind me that I only really dislike classic rock because it's overplayed.

19. M83 - Saturdays = Youth

This might have been higher had I not just gotten around to listening to it yesterday. 

20. Tobacco - Fucked Up Friends

Black Moth Super Rainbow are never as good as themselves as they are with other bands (such as Octopus Project) or on side projects. It's similar stuff but better done

21. Portishead - 3

Don't get me wrong, this is a very good album, but Portishead albums never really have grabbed me enough to be my favorites.

22. Carl Hector & The Malcouns - Sahara Swing

I was talking about this with a friend. This album sounds incredible when switching through songs. It's well-arranged and well-played. The songs just don't come together enough to really make it what it could be. 

23. The Dodos - The Visiter

I've only gotten around to listening to this about once, but I started listening after I heard there was a member of the Gris Gris. There was no Greg Ashley release this year that I know of, but this does evoke a very similar vibe of psychedelic folk. 

24. Eli "Paperboy" Reed - The Satisfier

His voice sometimes ventures into cheesy acoustic guitar jam-band territory, but his influences clearly lie in much funkier territory. And he does them justice.

25. Chin Chin - Chin Chin

I think the radio promo read something like "Chin Chin is like a wookie spread out on your couch". Yes.

26. Andre Williams & The New Orleans Hellhounds - Can You Deal With It?

He's done better and he's been more obscene, but this was certainly a pretty fun album.

albums that probably belong on here somewhere but I haven't listened to enough to really know where to place: The Surfites - Escapades in Space, both albums by Guitar, Torche's new album, Melvins - Nude With Boots. And I just found out Connie Price and the Keystones had a new album. 

2009: I'm calling it, the return of EXOTICA