Me no like so many damn CDs. Cool stuff slip through cracks. Bay Area things too. This column make amends. You read starting now. Thank you for patronage.
Disc: You Are Under Surveillance
Insufficient Description of Sound: Abrasive poli-punk screeds featuring shrieking guitars, Temple of Doom bass riffs, maniacal shouting, and random Yngwie Malmsteen samples (You've unleashed the fookin' fury!). Unnerving, cathartic, occasionally tedious, frequently pretty funny.
Unifying Lyrical Statement: This aggression will not stand, MAN -- an excellent Big Lebowski reference.
Sex Appeal? "The themes on the album deal with paranoia, lost freedom of choice, airborne revenge, the end of the world, the problems and consequences of an overgrown consumerist, bottom line-oriented culture; and the merits of applied righteous indignation," notes Replicator's press release. "There are absolutely no songs about relationships or love." Right.
Idealized Listening Environment: Guantanamo Bay.
Bonus Fact: Dig the Gauntlet reference ("Warrior Needs Food, Badly") and the lovely piano figure that wraps up "The Weight of 3 Marlon Brandos."
Further Info: Playing Oakland's Mile High Club Saturday, September 11. $7, 9 p.m. 510-654-4549 or OaklandMile High.com
Artist: Nedelle and Thom
Insufficient Description of Sound: Breezy, bouncy jazz-pop about failed relationships -- the Sesame Street theme recast by lovelorn hipsters. Lotsa la la las, but somehow, this album's lyrical content is way angrier than Replicator's.
Unifying Lyrical Statement: In time it snows/That's just how it goes/Whoa-oh oh-oh/Yeah yeah yeah/Whoa-oh-oh/Yeah yeah yeah
Sex Appeal? In a sad-sack Smiths sorta way, certainly. Think of it as eroticized moping.
Idealized Listening Environment: A Scrabble tournament that permits concealed weapons.
Bonus Fact: Note subversive political content: The boys who run this country/Terrorize us girls/Tearin' our clothing/And pulling our curls ... 'Cause I've been to the future baby/And I'll tell you what's in store/There ain't gonna be any cute things anymore.
Further Info: Playing SF's Hemlock Tavern Saturday 9/4. $6, 10 p.m. 415-923-0923 or HemlockTavern.com
Artist: Say Bok Gwai
Disc: Say Bok Gwai
Insufficient Description of Sound: Proudly declaring itself "San Francisco's first Chinese-American hardcore band," Say Bok Gwai specializes in angry ninety-second blasts with titles like "Special Won Ton Soup," "White Demon Stir Fry," "No Chop Suey" and "Chili Relleno Why You Buggin'" featuring badass Black Flag guitars and irate dudes hooting indignantly in Cantonese. It splits pretty evenly between terrifying and absolutely hilarious.
Unifying Lyrical Statement: Beats the hell outta me.
Sex Appeal? None particularly, though the lyrics to "Stick It In" are Don't be afraid to stick it in/Pull it out and do it again.
Idealized Listening Environment: The set of Big Trouble and Little China, in which Kurt Russell has been replaced by Ian MacKaye.
Bonus Fact: New songs the duo's debuted since Say Bok Gwai's release include "Fuck Bush" and "Fuck a Ronnie Reagan."
Further Info: Playing SF's 12 Galaxies tonight (Wednesday September 1). $6, 9 p.m. 12Galaxies.com
Artist: Big Chucho
Disc: Lifestyles of a Young Vetrano
Insufficient Description of Sound: Multilingual West Coast G-funk, stiff but sincere. The "crouching badassedly in front of tricked-out cars" album art technique is a wee bit Icy Hot Stuntaz, but Chucho's Tough Guy act is convincing. Even if his Lover Man act is not.
Unifying Lyrical Statement: Steve Urkel-esque chumps/Fake-ass wannabe G's/Swingin' from my nuts like leaves on trees.
Sex Appeal? So the classic soul bite "In the Mood" is Chucho's big bedroom moment: You make me feel brand new/Whenever I'm with you/Fantasizing in my head about how I'm gonna fuck you. "Fuck," Mr. Chucho, is not a "love song" word. We suggest "caress," "placate," or "amuse." Not that he's listening: Fuck the other bitches, he concludes. You my WOMAN. Let's keep it that way. Yes, let's.
Idealized Listening Environment: Anywhere but Big Chucho's boudoir.
Bonus Fact: Fortunately, we've located someone to give this guy some tips with ladies. Chucho, meet Marcel.
Disc: Secret Weapon Volumes 1 and 2
Insufficient Description of Sound: Prince, Prince, Prince, Prince, Prince. Ludicrous boot-knockin' electro funk -- The Onion's Smoove B sprung to hilarious life. Sprung to life, people.
Sex Appeal? Hoo, doggie. You better sit down. Better yet, lie down. There's no need to keep your clothes on, Marcel notes in his wafer-thin tenor, a sentiment he is eager to repeat. Come on baby/Come on near/Take off your clothes/And open your legs. Yeah, baby. Peas will also be served. Damn.
Typical Lyrical Statement: It's Friday night and I'm horny/Bump and grind/The touch of your body completes me/I'm gonna explode/Just keep the rhythm flowin'/Till I come/I'm sure you feel the vibrations/Come on baby.
Idealized Listening Environment: Good Vibrations; the circus.
Bonus Fact: Technically, the disc is divided into the seven-song Volume 1 ("designed for sex") and the six-song Volume 2 ("designed for love"). Volume 2's first track is entitled "The Number 69" -- Slappin' that ass as I lay you down, Marcel raps. We therefore suspect the whole thing is designed for sex.
Further Info: None needed. Oh, are you still dressed?
Seven Days - February 24, 5:52 PM
Culture Spy - February 23, 2:42 PM
What the Fork - February 23, 2:12 PM
Seven Days - February 21, 3:30 PM
Culture Spy - February 19, 1:45 PM