Teenage Fanclub: The Best 2000-2017

Teenage Fanclub’s history is now part of rock folk-law: Nirvana label-mates (Geffen), huge critical acclaim in the USA, missed out on mainstream success, made some of the best records of the era (1991’s Bandwagonesque, 1995’s Grand Prix, 1997’s Songs from Northern Britain). Since the release of Howdy! in 2000, the years have passed and the band’s output has slowed, however Teenage Fanclub’s music has evolved like a long and stable love affair evident with the release of their 10th album Here, propelled by intimacy, comfort, and masterful songwriting.

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  1. The Darkest Part of the Night – Here (2016)
  2. Dumb Dumb Dumb – Howdy! (2000)
  3. Cells – Man-Made (2005)
  4. Accidental Life – Howdy! (2000)
  5. It’s All in My Mind – Man-Made (2005)
  6. Shock and Awe – Shadows (2010)
  7. Baby Lee – Shadows (2010)
  8. I Need Direction – Howdy! (2000)
  9. I’m in Love – Here (2016)
  10. If I Never See You Again – Howdy! (2000)
  11. Dark Clouds – Shadows (2010)
  12. Thin Air – Here (2016)
  13. Slow Fade Pictures – Man-Made (2005)
  14. Falling Leaves – Man-Made (2005)
  15. When I Still Have Thee – Shadows (2010)

Running Time: 49:09

Teenage Fanclub: The Best 2000-2017

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#2: Bruce Springsteen – The River (1980)

Hi. Here at Pierce’s Press I take a look at bloated, self-indulgent, expansive double albums and gleefully trim it back to a single, dreck-free, no filler, concise, listenable record without having to reach for the skip button or needle re-positioning.

I think it may benefit some over-stuffed double albums from a little tightening up. It’s certainly the case for UnDoubled #2: Bruce Springsteen’s The River, now receiving the UnDoubled treatment.

The Rivber

Side One:
  1. The Ties That Bind
  2. Two Hearts
  3. Independance Day
  4. Hungry Heart
  5. Out In The Street
Side Two:
  1. The River
  2. Point Blank
  3. Cadillac Ranch
  4. The Price You Pay
  5. Wreck On The Highway

Originally submitted to Columbia Records as a single 10 song disc: The Ties That Bind. It got expanded to a whopping 20 after The Boss decided he wanted the album to have more depth and variety. The River, Springsteen’s New Wave album, ended up a heartland rock smorgasbord buffet, with everything from cinematic set-pieces, humorous bar rockers and moving ballads on the menu. The River gushes forth with the fury of a burst dam, delivering torrents of despair, inspiration, heartbreak, and joy. This is all somewhat overwhelming. Clocking in at 83 minutes and spread over 20 tracks, it’s a lot to take, even from the emerging rock ‘n’ roll icon at the peak of his songwriting powers. The River may have been more consistent as this single-disc album as originally envisioned, and such powerful numbers as Independence Day and Wreck on the Highway heralding the beginning of his forays into the harrowing acoustic balladry he’d explore with his 1982 follow-up, Nebraska.

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Zappa: The Central Instrumentalizer Vol II

Zappa: The Central Instrumentalizer Vol II

The uncatergorizable Frank Zappa. Astute, paradigm-shifting virtuosity at its uncompromisingly brilliant (and ballsy) best. This hand-picked Vol II selection highlights Zappa’s astonishing yet accessible instrumental work from his mindbogglingly expansive career.

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1. I Promise Not to Come in Your Mouth – Zappa in New York (1978)

2. Duke of Prunes – Orchestral Favorites (1979)

3. Son of Mr Green Genes – Hot Rats (1969)

4. Flambay – Sleep Dirt (1979)

5. Eat That Question – The Grand Wazoo (1972)

6. The Orange County Lumber Truck – Weasels Ripped My Flesh (1970)

7. Theme From The 3rd Movement Of Sinister Footwear – You Are What You Is (1981)

8. St. Etienne – Jazz From Hell (1986)

9. Sleep Dirt – Sleep Dirt (1979)

10. D.C. Boogie – Imaginary Diseases (2007)

11. Rubber Shirt – Sheik Yerbouti (1979)

12. Jim & Tammy’s Upper Room – Guitar (1988)

13. RDNZL – Studio Tan (1978)

14. Marque-Son’s Chicken – Them Or Us (1984)

15. Ancient Armaments – Halloween (1978)

16. Bowling on Charen – Trans-Fusion (2006)

17. Echidna’s Arf (Of You) – Roxy & Elsewhere (1974)

18. Big Swifty – Waka-Jawaka (1972)

19. Envelopes – Ship Arriving Too Late to Save a Drowning Witch (1982)

20. Montreal – Imaginary Diseases (2007)

Running Time: 1:54:33

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Zappa: The Central Instrumentalizer Vol I

zappa
1.  Filthy Habits – Sleep Dirt (1979)
2.  Twenty Small Cigars – Chunga’s Revenge (1970)
3.  Pink Napkins – Shut Up And Play Yer Guitar (1981)
4.  We Are Not Alone – The Man From Utopia (1983)
5.  Zoot Allures – Zoot Allures (1976)
6.  Treacherous Cretins – Shut Up And Play Yer Guitar (1981)
7.  Apostrophe’ – Apostrophe’ (1974)
8.  Rat Tomago – Sheik Yabouti (1979)
9.  Black Napkins – Zoot Allures (1976)
10. Watermelon in Easter Hay – Joe’s Garage (1979)
11.  Rejyptian Strut – Sleep Dirt (1979)
12.  Sofa No.1 – One Size Fits All (1975)
13.  What’s New in Baltimore – FZ Meets the Mothers of Prevention (1985)
14.  Tink Walks Amok – The Man From Utopia (1983)
15.  G-spot Tornado – Jazz From Hell (1986)
16.  Blessed Relief – The Grand Wazoo (1972)
17.  Peaches En Regalia – Hot Rats (1969)
18.  Aybe Sea – Burnt Weeny Sandwich (1970)
19.  Imaginary Diseases – Imaginary Diseases (2007)
20.  Sexual Harassment in the Workplace – Guitar (1988)
Running time: 1:39:07
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#3: Frank Zappa – Shut Up ‘N Play Yer Guitar (1981)

Hi. Here at Pierce’s Press I take a look at bloated, self-indulgent, expansive double albums and gleefully trim it back to a single, dreck-free, no filler, concise, listenable record without having to reach for the skip button or needle re-positioning.

I think it may benefit some over-stuffed double albums from a little tightening up. It’s certainly the case for UnDoubled #3: Frank Zappa’s Shut Up ‘N Play Yer Guitar series, a project consisting of Shut Up ‘N Play Yer Guitar, Shut Up ‘N Play Yer Guitar Some More and Return of the Son of Shut Up ‘N Play Yer Guitar, now receiving the UnDoubled mistreatment.

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Shut Up UnDoubled

Side One:

  1.  Five-Five-Five (2:35)
  2.  Treacherous Cretins (5:35)
  3.  Heavy Duty Judy (4:42)
  4.  Soup ‘N Old Clothes (7:49)

Side Two:

  1.  The Deathless Horsie (6:20)
  2.  Pink Napkins (4:35)
  3.  Pinocchio’s Furniture (2:05)
  4.  Stucco Homes (9:08)

These mostly live instrumental passages and Zappa’s beautifully lyrical guitar soloing were used as links between tracks at concerts, these recorded between 1977 and 1980, eventually released in the all-encompassing triple album Shut Up ‘N Play Yer Guitar in 1981. Trimming a 20-track set down to a manageable eight numbers was no easy task, especially when the entire album is of an extraordinarily high standard. This was a hugely important venture into guitar-jazz conceptualization for the artist, this abridged version captures the creme de la creme: soft touches (Pink Napkins), sublime melodic phrasing (The Deathless Horsie) and intense guitar assaults (Five-Five-Five) from one of the great guitarists in rock history.

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#4: Fleetwood Mac – Tusk (1979)

Hi. Here at Pierce’s Press I take a look at bloated, self-indulgent, expansive double albums and gleefully trim it back to a single, dreck-free, no filler, concise, listenable record without having to reach for the skip button or needle re-positioning.

I think it may benefit some over-stuffed double albums from a little tightening up. It’s certainly the case for UnDoubled #4: Fleetwood Mac’s expansive Tusk, now receiving the UnDoubled mistreatment.

Fleetwood_Mac_-_Tusk 2.jpg

Tusk UnDoubled

Side One:

  1.  Tusk (3:37)
  2.  Think About Me (2:44)
  3.   Sara (6:30)
  4.   I Know I’m Not Wrong (3:00)
  5. Brown Eyes (4:27)

Side Two:

  1.   That’s Enough for Me (1:50)
  2.   Angel (4:53)
  3.   Save Me a Place (2:42)
  4.   Over and Over (4:34)
  5.   That’s All for Everyone (3:03)
  6.   Beautiful Child (5:21)

Tusk. While not as concise as the magical Fleetwood Mac (1975) and Rumours (1977) albums, nor as commercially successful, there are treasures buried deep within. At a time the band was splintering under big egos, internal relationship struggles and exhaustion (check out the footage of artistic linchpin Lindsey Buckingham creating bathroom home recordings), Fleetwood Mac admirably did not follow a formula to create a Rumours 2 at the behest of their record company Warner Bros. If they had, the album may have ended up something like this UnDoubled creation. Punchy Buckingham opener, even spread of Christine McVie and Stevie Nicks songs, rockers, ballads of equal proportion. Instead we were given a 20 track kitchen sink double album  possibly a case of too much is more than enough. Particularly Buckingham, he is all over this, in a good way. Writing half of the album and arranging most of it, a lot of his coked up Buddy Holly (That’s Enough for Me) via Brian Wilson (That’s All for Everyone) compositions would’ve slotted in nicely on eccentric solo album Law and Order (1981).

Interesting fact: former Mac guitarist Peter Green plays on the superb Brown Eyes, uncredited.

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Merry Christmas

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Have a Merry Christmas. Hic!

The Deano Christmas Albumdeano

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Duderama – Modeling (2016)

Duderama’s new album Modeling (2016) is also available for download at Bandcamp: https://duderama1.bandcamp.com/

 

© Surface to Air records, 2016.

All songs and instruments by Messrs Brwn & Stck.

 

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#5: David Bowie – Outside (1995)

Hi. Here at Pierce’s Press I take a look at bloated, self-indulgent, expansive double albums and gleefully trim it back to a single, dreck-free, no filler, concise, listenable record without having to reach for the skip button or needle re-positioning.

I think it may benefit some over-stuffed double albums from a little tightening up. It’s certainly the case for un-doubled #5: Bowie’s indigestible Non-Linear Gothic Drama Hyper-Cycle Outside, now receiving the Un-Doubled mistreatment.

outside-undoubled

Outside Undoubled

Side One:

  1. Outside (4:04)
  2. The Heart’s Filthy Lesson (4:57)
  3. A Small Plot of Land (6:34)
  4. The Motel (6:50)
  5. I Have Not Been to Oxford Town (3:48)

Side Two:

  1. No Control (4:34)
  2. Voyeur of Utter Destruction (4:21)
  3. Wishful Beginnings (5:08)
  4. We Prick You (4:35)
  5. I’m Deranged (4:31)

Bowie’s willfully noncommercial Outside seems intent on thoroughly alienating a legion of fans who jumped aboard in the 80s. This reunion with Brian Eno after some 18 years since his canonized Berlin-era landmarks, however, created a marvelously dense album. Folding in elements of techno, electronica and grunge, it’s as excessive as any mid-90s epic rock magnum opus as there ever was. Unfortunately it is also massively elongated, containing a substantial amount of intrusive conceptual fluff, although the proper songs can stand up on their own, as there is certainly some brilliant and inventive avant-garde rock to be found here. Dispensing with the melodrama may have inspired this concise masterpiece.

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#6: Kiss – Solo (1978)

Hi. Here at Pierce’s Press I take a look at bloated, self-indulgent, expansive double albums and gleefully trim it back to a single, dreck-free, no filler, concise, listenable record without having to reach for the skip button or needle re-positioning.

I think it may benefit some over-stuffed double albums from a little tightening up. It’s certainly the case for un-doubled #6: Kiss’ solo albums, originally released all at once to an indifferent record buying public, now receiving the Un-Doubled mistreatment.

kiss-solos

Kiss Solo Undoubled

Side One:

  1. New York Groove (Ace) – (3:03)
  2. Ain’t Quite Right (Paul) – (3:37)
  3. See You Tonight (Gene) – (2:28)
  4. Tonight You Belong to Me (Paul) – (4:40)
  5. Rip It Out (Ace) – (3:40)

Side Two:

  1. Radioactive (Gene)  – (3:51)
  2. What’s On Your Mind (Ace) – (3:28)
  3. I Can’t Stop the Rain (Peter) – (4:26)
  4. Mr Make Believe (Gene) – (4:02)
  5. When You Wish Upon a Star (Gene) – (2:44)

Some Kiss fans say Ace’s is the best, some say Paul’s, others say Gene’s is the pick, but nobody says Peter. The truth is they are all terrible, however this 10 song collection represents the best of what was released as four solo albums that would flood record stores across the world, remaining in those stores un-bought for months. Ironically Kiss would end up releasing an album identical to this as a follow up (4 solo artists working “together” as a band) called Dynasty (1979) which would fare slightly better.

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