Saturday 31 January 2015

Never a Dull Moment - Demo (1986)

Thanks to John Phillips, who messaged us via our facebook group to send this demo from Never a Dull Moment - one of those bands from the 80's who we've heard about but, until getting this, hadn't actually heard. We'd also read a bunch about these guys, thanks to articles like this one by James Muretich, from a May 1987 Calgary Herald profile of the city's independent music scene:

The band was Dave Orr and John Hiebert on guitars and vocals, Trent Buhler on Bass and Chris "Lou" Lowry on drums. Pretty much and all-star lineup. This article from an 1986 issue of VOX, which explains a bit of their rich heritage, with members coming from Silent Terror and White Noise.

Of course, these guys would go on to bands like Stelazine/Skin Barn, Ninth Configuration, Field Day and, uh, Pal Joey.

This 8-track demo is a bit hissy, but it's still a great glimpse of a what must have been a pretty excellent band.

Also, based on the two photos above, they liked jumping a lot.

Update: thanks hugely to Trent Buhler for getting in touch and giving us a scan of the j-card for the tape!

Wednesday 14 January 2015

Everymen - Sit On It (1996)

By PURE CHANCE, we found today's LP in the stacks at Recordland shortly after Ron Choe gave us the Feds tape we just posted. Which is weird, because (a) the Feds were basically the Everymen plus a bunch of other folks and (b) we had no idea the Everymen had pressed a 12" record (IF we had bothered to read the back of their 1996-1998 compilation CD, we would have realized, uh, duh, they did put out a 12"). Actually, in finding this, we think the Everymen make the list of one of the few Calgary bands that put out 7" and 12" records, tapes and CDs. That's a pretty good spectrum of recording media they've hit there.

Oh, and this one is pretty good. Casey Lewis's drumming propels this record through 22 minutes (note: this is a 45rpm record. Darby Sawchuk's vocals sound completely weird and druggy at 33rpm) of all ages pop punk goodness. 

It leaves us pining for the Carpenter's Union Hall.

Sunday 11 January 2015

Feds - Demo (1995)

Ron Choe gave us a third tape, one that we're very excited to see has a j-card. AND it's got Gene Poole bouncing around the office doing a dance he claims is called "skanking." Calgary hasn't had a lot of ska bands, so we weren't convinced and decided to hit the YouTubes to verify that he was in fact "skanking." We've only just barely pulled ourselves out of a video involving a skinny guy and a fedora, and we're taking away Gene's bourbon.

We really can't fault Gene that much, though (even though he DID drink most of the bourbon). This is pretty fun stuff that stays pretty true to the genre - the two tunes are danceable and have a nice bit of social commentary to them. The fact that the guys from the Everymen are also in the band doesn't hurt.

Get your skank on here!

Friday 9 January 2015

Staasi Quartet - Studio

We have a second Staasi Quartet tape from Ron Choe, with as much of a j-card and backstory as the last. This one is more polished, and we (and Ron) are fairly sure these tracks were part of the same studio session with Ben Doktor that yielded the three tracks on the Hellride to a Bloodbath compilation. We have this level of confidence because it includes the three tracks that were on Hellride.

This is probably our favourite of all the Staasi tapes that have come into the CCPS collection. There's some pretty great stuff on here that maybe helps to reconcile the slight shift in the Primrods' musical direction after Garret McClure joined the band. Or maybe we just said that so we could mention the Primrods again.

Wednesday 7 January 2015

Stassi Quartet - 4-Track Demos

Following on our Primrods post from last week, we're very pleased to be able to present another offering from the Staasi Quartet. This one comes to us via bassist Ron Choe, who clears up some of our confusion about the band's membership:
"Staasi was at most times a quartet. Garrett, myself (bass) and Dan MacKinnon (guitar). We had many different drummers - I think the last one was Dan’s brother, Rob - but I remember Garrett drumming in the studio and playing a few shows on drums."
We've been digging through our old VOX magazines - we remember an article on the band that might have helped, but, alas. 

The other thing that strikes us about this is that it sounds really different from the other two tapes that Chris Zimmel gave us a few years ago. This is relatively more straight-ahead than those other two tapes - this sounds like it might have been a basement 4-track endeavor, and includes a couple of the songs that also show up on the Hellride to a Bloodbath compilation. There's no j-card or other info with this- Ron thinks it was recorded somewhere between 1994 and 1996.

As different as it is, it's nonetheless a great thing to get to hear

Thursday 1 January 2015

Primrods - Kneecappin'! (1995)

Well, we slept through a significant part of the first day of 2015. So, in a half-assed attempt to keep some form of momentum going this afternoon, we're going back to the CD collection for one of our favourites. Which, we note, is turning 20 years old this year.

The Primrods' Kneecappin'! is probably one of our desert island discs. Mostly because we think we could use the shiny backside of the disc to help attract rescue vessels. But also partly because it's really good, and captures the band at the height of the first (second?) incarnation. We're actually surprised we haven't posted this yet - clearly we were waiting for the right time for this one. Well, we have some clipping from the Muretich archives to pad this post out, so now MUST be the right time!

Our favourite quote from the above article: "As far as I'm concerned, we're basically here in Calgary, nowheresville, pretending to be a rock band, which everybody else is doing, so why not put records out because that's what you do when you're in a band." Genius. Likewise for James Muretich's description of the band as "Captain Beefheart stripped of his rank." Good stuff. 

It's kind of too bad Muretich panned the additional dialogue at the end of the album. We kind of get what he's saying, though - with it tacked on at the end of "Francis Gary Powers Offers You The Thrill Of A Lifetime," it does kind of hurt the listenability of the thing. So, for your pleasure, we've included both the full version and an edited track (ie song only) in today's glorious download.