Wednesday, May 26, 2010

the Mushuganas "Lows in the Mid 90's" CD release show THIS WEEKEND - 5/29

This Saturday night (May 29th) at Subterranean in Chicago, not only are the Mushuganas playing their 43rd reunion show since 2002, but Beercan Records is officially rolling out the long-awaited, often-delayed and wonderfully good-looking Mushuganas career retrospective CD "Lows in the Mid 90's"Also on the bill are the Mushuganas contemporaries Winepress and Lynyrd's Innards who are great bands in their own right.  Joining in the fun are The Slow Death and The Reaganomics who, frankly, I know nothing about but let's just assume they're great too.  Rounding out the bill is an acoustic set by Kepi Ghoulie of the Groovie Ghoulies.  Yes, an acoustic set sharing the bill with the Mushuganas CD release show.  But hey, I dig the Groovie Ghoulies and I once saw the Mushuganas play BEFORE a magician, so again, let's just assume the best.

Subterranean is located at 2011 North Avenue in Chicago and tickets for the show are available at  Doors are at 8:30, show starts at 9:00.  This show is part of the Windy City Sound Clash which runs from Friday through Sunday and weekend passes are also available so get you some.

Needless to say, we here at Beercan are very excited about this show and the CD itself.  It was 75% labor of love, 25% pain in the ass, but it's here, it'll be $10 at the show, it'll be for sale here and other places after the show and here is the track listing.  See you Saturday...

1 - You Really Can Never Tell
2 - Theme From Mushugana
3 - Dropout Girl
4 - Renaissance
5 - Mistreated
6 - Spoonfed
7 - Downfall
8 - Disappointed
9 - Breaking With Tradition
10 - Handsome and Beautiful
11 - When I'm Here With You
12 - You Hate Me, I Hate You (Live)
13 - Iowa
14 - We're the Mushuganas and This is Rock and Roll
15 - Aimed Wrong
16 - Strawberry Shortcake
17 - Summer Shoes
18 - WHPK Freakout
19 - Some Wings (Live)
20 - Last Night on Earth
21 - Uriah Heep Records
22 - Heartbreak '98
23 - The Vine
24 - The Deacon
25 - Long Good Time
26 - Her Boyfriend
27 - Paul Deluxe
28 - Attention
29 - Anyone Here Like Bad Religion?
30 - Everyone
31 - Ass Kissers
32 - It's Raining

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Reviews - 5/12/10

Another Let's Pretend Records ( bonanza compliments of the Complete Pete.  These records have been out for something like 8 years at this point, but hey maybe you haven't listened to them yet and are waiting for our opinion first?

Bi-Furious/Vacation Bible School - Split 7" - The Bi-Furious side is comprised of 7 songs in under 5 minutes.  Supa-tight bullpower with sssssscreamed, and we mean screamed, indecipherable lyrics.  Though as with their debut "full-length" there's something about Bi-Furious that separates their sound from cookie-cutter hardcore stuff.  Maybe it's the guitar tone.  Maybe it's knowing when to hold a guitar note just a half a second longer to induce a chuckle in the listener.  Really, I don't know what "it" is, but they've got "it" and they couldn't lose "it" if they paraphrase Martin Short in "The Three Amigos".  Best song title on their side - "Give Pizza Chance".  Drummer whom a song is dedicated to - Vacation Bible School's Sean Leonard. (

The VBS side is comprised of 5 songs in under 4 minutes.  Supa-tight bullpower with slightly-less screamed, and we mean slightly-less, somewhat more decipherable lyrics.  A couple of these numbers, while bullet-train fast, are downright poppy.  Well, as "poppy" as a sub-30 second song can be, I suppose.  In particular, I'm citing "Inavidadagadda" which comes in second to "Shopaholacaust" for best song title on their side.  Drummer whom a song is dedicated to - Bi-Furious' Jimmy Adamson.  And what a dedication!  Apparently, Jimmy will "kick your fucking ass", "fuck your fucking face" AND "fuck your fucking ass".

Now if he can do all those things at the same time, I'd be really impressed.  (

Brokedowns/Sass Dragons - Split 7" - Burly punk rock from these Brokedown lads.  Although, not lummoxy and stupid.  They throw in some timing changes and guitar chicanery that let you, the record nerd, know that these guys know what they're doing, aren't just burly lummoxes, and are crafting some ver ver cool, heartfelt tunes.  First two songs are originals and apparently the last song, "Full On Idle", is a Breeders song which, admittedly, this reviewer was not familiar with and consequently leads this reviewer to think that he should listen to more Breeders.

On second thought, maybe it makes more sense to listen to more Brokedowns because this version is one of those tunes you immediately skip back and listen to again.  Which I just did and may do again after finishing this sentence.  Goddamn!!  (

Wow, the Sass Dragons have a lot of records out don't they?  And honestly, the first of the three tracks on this little slab left this reviewer thinking, "uh-oh, they've got more requests to crank out albums and 7's than they have decent songs for."  Fortunately, that first song is like 40 seconds long and the second 2 are scorchers.  We here at Beercan have jocked these guys over and over and over again so there's no need to really do it again.  Just go out and pick up anything by them and then lovingly whisper into your own ears, "I really think you're going to like this."  (

Das Kapital - Punk House Heaven 7" - On track one, "That's Career Suicide!!", and in one of the classic punk-rock traditions, Das Kapital wrestles with the question of whether it's worth it to grind away at some staid and safe job in exchange for a little bit of security or do you go out on a limb and really "live", by gawd!!  Who knows?  Get a job, hippie.  Fucking sell-out.  You're a bum!  You're a bore!  Grass is greener and back and forth and forth and back round and round and round it goes...and probably always will. 

"Punk House Heaven" is a throwaway song if I've ever heard one, however "I Like It", if based in actual autobiographical fact, is a pretty brave, soul-baring piece of art and I'm not being sarcastic.

Musically, we weren't over the moon about this one, but I can't knock it...except for that "Punk House Heaven" tune.  (

Full of Fancy/Screaming Females - Split 7" - So, the needle hit the record and I got about half-way through a big eye roll during which time I was rushing to judgement thinking, "What is this? Some fucking outtake from the 'Juno' soundtrack?"  But then just as quickly, the drums and bass kicked in and my rush to judgement took a sudden 180 and I was charmed and enthralled by the wide-eyed optimism tempered with a dash of "cram-it" on display here.  Track 2, "Notebook" offered up more of the same goodness and I'm left wanting to hear more.  As a point of reference, I could see Full of Fancy and perhaps Walker sharing a bill nicely together.

No, not the TV-show, Walker.  The 90's band from NW Indiana.  Does anyone even get that reference?  If you don't you should, 'cause Walker was good.  And so is Full of Fancy.  (

Screaming Females offer up 2 solid tunes on their side of this split.  "No Being Disgusting" sounds reminiscent of the Minutemen but with female vocals.  And when that solo hits near the end, you, the listener, will think, "hey is that guitar on some kind of jazz setting?"  But it works!  At least it did for us.

Song #2, "Pretty OK" is a little more straightforward.  Less angular sounding.  And that weird guitar tone is still floating around.

Pick this one up.  Wethinks both of these bands are dern good. (

Reviews - 5/5/10


Blotto, Conniption Fitts, Sass Dragons and Prohibition - "Come and Take It" 4-Way Split 7" - Blotto opens things up with "Annie".  Growly vocals over a simple, almost country-ish tune.

 Conniption Fitts take the honors of best song on this 4-way delight.  "I Can't Buy This" finds them a little meaner and a little tighter sounding than usual.  Not that they're wimpy and sloppy on other efforts, but this track is a prize, dear friends.

The Sass Dragons offer up another catchy ditty pleasantly entitled "Young Professionals Can Suck My Fucking Dick".  Good tune and quite juvenile.  Even for the Sass Dragons.

Prohibition wraps things up with "Is Decency Retro Yet?" which at first seems a little heavy on the "whoa, whoooa, whoa" quota, but eventually wins you over with it's punk-spunkiness.

Is it backhanded compliment day at this blog?  Must be.  Anyway, good little record available at Let's Pretend Records (