Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Thousandsticks - Six Songs (1999)


Clearly, there's only one way to go after the other day's Lee Shedden post - and that's further into the obscure Fire Engine Red-related CDs in the CCPS collection.

Thousandsticks (named for the FER drummer's hometown) was James Hayden stepping out from behind the drum kit to form a quite spectacular and horribly underrated band. There's something tremendously endearing about this band - Gene keeps muttering something about "blue collar rock", but he wouldn't know a blue collar if it bit him on the ass. This is a kind of grown-up rock and roll, with a bit of an alt.country twang.

This CD-R came out a few years ahead of their White Knuckled Midnight Drives CD, and lacks Lorrie Matheson's keyboard noodling, which helps Lyle Crilly's excellent guitar work stand out. Actually, Crilly is the odd one out here, as this is miles removed from the britpop bands that he played with in the mid-80's.

After Thousandsticks, Hayden played with thee mighty Von Zippers, before moving to Vancouver and playing with DOA for a short while (under the quite excellent pseudonym Floor Tom Jones). He's now part of the quite excellent Greenback High.

We highly recommend this quite excellent download.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Stagger Lee Shedden - Cultus Coulee


So, while we're talking Fire Engine Red, let's also talk a bit about Lee Shedden, the band's bass player-turned-disappearing act. You already know that Lee punched out of the band just before 1530 was released, and maybe you're wondering what else he went on to. Even if you're not, too freakin' bad. We're going to tell you anyways.

Actually, we've kind of already told you, via this post from almost exactly four years ago (holy crap, we've been plugging away at this ridiculous venture for a long time...). Except that tape pre-dated 1530, so maybe we didn't. Thankfully, Lee gave us this CD which nicely sums up his endeavours. This collects some of his recordings from 1993 through to 2004, allegedly put togther when he was trying to get back into musicking (or whatever the kids call "playing gigs" these days).

Of note, there are a bunch of Fire Engine Red-related recordings on here, nestled in among his Geek Beet recordings. One of our favourite FER tracks, "Start at the Top" gets a crazed, folk-psych-rave-up treatment. And, for those of you who enjoy such trivia, the CD closes with a less half-assed version of "Stiletto Heel Waltx" than that which closes 1530.

Shedden just put the recordings for his 10-year old An Education and a Riot up on bandcamp, and he's now fronting the Neutral States (which also features Andrew Wedderburn).

Stagger over to the download...

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Fire Engine Red - 1530 (Advance Copy) (1995)


Now, here's a thing. You may know that we at the CCPS are HUGE fans of the Primrods (we may have told you this once or twice). But what you probably don't know is that we're also HUGE fans of Fire Engine Red. 1530 has been one of our go-to records for the past, well, almost 20 years. We've been searching for an excuse to post it, and thanks to Lee Shedden, we now have that excuse in the form of this - a rare advance cassette of their meisterwerk.

Lee says that this tape is not only a different running order from the final CD (which we can confirm, thanks to our basic literacy skills) but also slightly different mixes (which we can almost confirm - but we're lazy). Lorrie says he doesn't remember this tape at all. We haven't asked James, mostly because Gene is a bit embarrassed by a drunken proclamation of his love for the Thousandsticks.

Whichever way you cut it (or mix and sequence it, as the case may be), 1530 is still one of our favourite things to come out of this city. Lorrie recounted a few stories from this era in his great conversation on Mike Bell's Bandwagonish podcast - so you probably know that even before the CD came out, Lee wigged out and quit the band. We always wonder what would have become of these guys had the original trio stayed together (or, even better, if they'd just added Brooker Buckingham on second guitar).

Anyways, grab this and try to imagine that for yourself.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Tom Phillips - Honky Tonk School (1995)


Tom Phillips (and his Men of Constant Sorrow) is a fixture in the local roots/country scene, so we were super excited (again!) to get this tape from Lee Shedden. Phillips has put out a handful of CDs over the years (both with and without the MOCS), but we're not sure where this fits in his overall collection of works - mostly because this is a very refined recording that sounds, well, exactly like what we'd expect a Tom Phillips recording from 2014 to sound like.

Get your honky tonk fix here.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Simpson Brothers - Word From the Range (1994)


We're going to dig into a few tapes from Fire Engine Red's Lee Shedden, and we figure this is a good follow up musically to our last post. It looks like the Simpson Brothers played the Calgary Folk Fest a few times in the early 90s, and we're pretty sure they're not these guys.

So, we'll direct you to grab this tape before anyone tries to tell you they were eaten by coyotes.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

James Keelaghan - Timelines (1987)


Posting those last two tapes was a tough go, what with all the tales about being eaten by coyotes and all. So, we're pleased to post a tape today by someone who has not been eaten by a coyote (yet).

We posted James Keelaghan's second tape a few months ago, and we were super excited (we get super excited a lot - it's like Gene's super power) to find this in a thrift store. It's gems like this that keep up digging through piles of Pearl Jam and Moxy Fruvous tapes.

Timelines is available for download through cdbaby, so we're going to point you there for your downloading needs.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Visions of Kody - Kingston


If we had received this tape from CP Walsh just a few years earlier, we would have been able to visit Visions of Kody's Geocities page and perhaps found out some real, factual information to share with you.

Instead, we are going to tell you that they were also eaten by coyotes, all though we have no idea when, since there's not even a year listed on this tape.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Mayfly - Chivers EP (1997)



With all of our excitement about a Slow Fresh Oil reunion show, we forgot about posting some other bits and pieces that came to us via CP Walsh. So, back to the usual CCPS agenda - making up stuff about bands we don't actually know anything about!

We can't remember Mayfly. We're getting nothing when we try to cross-reference their members to any other bands. We think they were eaten by coyotes shortly after recording this tape.

Monday, 7 April 2014

CCPS Miscellany: Slow Fresh Oil - White Trash on Black Laquer (1998)/Post-Operative Socket Management (1999)



We really meant to leave Edmonton, but we gotta stay for one last post. And, yeah, we know - these aren't tapes. BUT this is one of our favourite Edmonton bands ever. And they're playing a reunion show next month at the Palomino!

For us, Slow Fresh Oil were a high water mark in not just Alberta's music scene, but 90's music in general. It was listening to Thrush Hermit covering Sebadoh. Or Sebadoh covering Thrush Hermit, we're not sure which. Anyways, super-catchy lo-fi pop:



The band put out two official releases - an LP and a CD. Instead of linking to a download, though, we're going to point you to their fresh, new bandcamp, where you can download a 90-track compilation of their complete works.

Saturday, 5 April 2014

CCPS Miscellany: Chris Smith - Wait & See Cafe (1994)



We've got one last tape from CP Walsh, and then we'll be headed back to Calgary. This tape is from Chris Smith, who we know as having played with Jr. Gone Wild (check out this amazing story from the band about their time with Chris). This is pretty solid, rootsy stuff.