Saturday, April 15, 2006

Dear Seattle

I miss you Seattle.

I miss Capitol Hill, I miss Queen Anne. I miss driving to Mount Rainier, and I miss all my favorite places to sit around and drink coffee. I also miss the good friends, the shows, and the attitude.

So here is a post about three bands from the Emerald City (for real, that's what it's called for those who aren't familiar).


The Beakers formed in Seattle in 1980, opening for the likes of Gang Of Four and XTC, and igniting the interest of post-punk fanatics around the world (which, initially, was like 50 people, all of whom were in bands of their own). After a flare of real popularity in 1981 and some posthumous love, they have attained the status of local legends. At least, legends amongst those who care enough to do some reading and digging.

Yes, on first listen, they could easily be mistaken for James Chance & The Contortions at their most accessible.

Check out what Just For A Day had to say about them (with more MP3s after the jump).

The Beakers - Dinosaurs Mambo (live at The Showbox)
The Beakers - Thinking Postmodern


Welcome are a far more recent product of Seattle. I know little about them, except that - for the most part - they fuse Pavement and hook-driven discord with '60s psych to great effect. Offering equally solid male and female vocals, and a fair amount of exploration within the confines of their sound, a full album would no doubt be an interesting listen. You can download 10 songs from their website; the mastering is a bit heavy on the low-end but they still sound great.

Welcome - All Set
Welcome - Bunky
Welcome - Sirs (Small Set)


So the AYF? Shoegaze Retrospective still isn't finished. One day. One day.

Until then, check out C'est La Mort. These guys and girls manage to reference Cocteau Twins and The Chameleons in the most direct of ways without sounding like a poor rip-off of either. That's tough to do, and has earned them that rare distinction of being a worthwhile modern shoegaze band. As if they could be anything else with a name like that.

C'est La Mort - Stand Fast
C'est La Mort - Collapse (With Silence)


Allmusic is back to HTML and no more forced registration. Rejoice.


Unfamiliar Records now has a website. Come say hi. There is a compilation in the works, which will be an online-only experiment. Further CDs will be released once details have been worked out with potential bands.


Fuck grunge.


When discussing Seattle you can't forget to mention: Smoosh are the cutest. Awww...