Veronica Lake - Revolution Lake Style

It's too bad Veronica Lake didn't create a mini-revolution, actually. Instead, the Ann Arbor Michigan pop band released about five singles and contributed to a few compilations (listed here on TweeNet) before shambling into obscurity. Fitting, really, as the insert to their first 7" describes Veronica Lake as "dedicated to flexidiscs, exclamation marks, and hopelessly derivative, instantly forgettable songs." Bless 'em. As mentioned in an early YSKOD post, I named my radio show after this first single, which they confess "was done under the influence of the Field Mice." Let's have a listen to the B-side of that 1992 single, right now, shall we...

Side B - Veronica Lake - See Me When You Are 16 [4 stars mp3]

Very nice, despite the obvious dodge.

Next up, let's have us a VL song from the wonderful SpinArt Pop Licks 7" Box Set. Released in 1992 just as the label moved from Pennsylvania to NYC, each of the 1,500 boxes contained 6 different colour 7"s by Throw That Beat In The Garbagecan, Trampoline, Suddenly Tammy!, Swirl, Poole, and Veronica well as lots of stickers, inserts, and even some candy and toys (see below). I still haven't been able to bring myself to eat the's...too...collectible. Hey, you're weird too. I know cos you're reading this.

Side A - Veronica Lake - When You Smile [3 stars mp3]

Third up, let's hear a song off VL's split single with the Crayon, which was the first record released on Cher Doll Records, back in 1992 (thanks Nancy!).

Side A - Veronica Lake - Sleepyhouse [4 stars mp3]

The revolution ended apruptly with what the band considered to be their finest moment, the Threnody/In The Clouds 7", released on VL-member Chip Porter's Audrey's Diary label in 1993. It's certainly the band's most proficient output, musically, but I prefer the charming self-aware naivete of their first 7".

Side B - Veronica Lake - In The Clouds [4 stars mp3]

Ah, that was fun, wasn't it? Hope you enjoyed it. See you next week.

Unrest - So Sick

Ever get the feeling Ye Olde Discographee is a little short in U-band breadth? Oh well, it's a boon for Unrest fans, who hopefully do not number more than 100 as I'm also a little short in mp3-host-bandwidth this month (hence I'll be snipping old mp3 links pretty quickly from now tune in weekly or you may miss out). Here's "So Sick" from the 2,000 copy tour 7" released on Unrest's Mark Robinson's Teen Beat label in 1993. This A-side song appears on 1993's Perfect Teeth album, and an extended version of the B-side "Vibe Out" appears on the 1993 Cath Carroll EP.

Side A - Unrest - So Sick [3 stars mp3]

Unrest - Teenage Suicide

Teenage suicide, don't do it! But as long as you keep your tongue planted firmly in cheek, go ahead and download this rockin' good 1992 Peel Session version of "Teenage Suicide" from a bootleg 7" EP released in 1993. All you zany theme bloggers take note: There are more than enough songs with "teenage" in the title out there awaiting compilation. The Candyskins even released a completely different song called "Teenage Suicide" on their Death of a Minor TV Celebrity album in's nowhere near as good as this one.

Side A - Unrest - Teenage Suicide [4 stars mp3]

Unrest - When It All Comes Down (Miaow cover)

Da da da da da da.
Da da da da da da.
Da da da da da da.
Da da da da da da.

I love Unrest's poperiffic cover version of Miaow's "When It All Comes Down", the last of four songs released on Sub Pop's March 1991 Singles Club 7". It was released in an edition of 7,000, so it's hardly rare, but it may be new to mp3dom. The other three songs on this EP are covers of songs by Crispy Ambulance, ESG, and Crawling Chaos...all obscure bands from the early 80s and all pretty weird covers. Miaow were a London UK band, around from 1985-1987, whose singer Cath Carroll seems to be Unrest singer Mark Robinson's muse. The cover is quite similar to the original.

Side B - Unrest - When It All Comes Down (Miaow cover) [5 stars mp3]

Twitch Hazel - Believe

Here's another one of my earliest mail order treats. I bought a copy of a Fudge 7" in a store, then mail ordered away for the Kramer's Beach Double 7" on Richmond VA's Brilliant Records which featured four Twitch Hazel songs on red vinyl and two by The Technical Jed on blue vinyl. What a deal. You see, Twitch Hazel morphed into Fudge, but then briefly reTwitchHazelized in 1993 to record this set of "pre-Fudge artifacts". I'm glad they did, because all four songs are solid.

Side A - Twitch Hazel - Believe [4 stars mp3]

YSKOD Contest #1

Enough of all this giving on's time to give something back! In going through my discography I found that I have two copies of this Tsunami 7". So let's have a YSKOD contest, shall we? Indeed, we shall and are. The first person to post the names of the two songs on this record in the comments section, who also includes his/her mailing address, will receive this record in the mail.

Tsunami - Geniuses of Crack

Tsunami and their Simple Machines Records label contributed in no small measure to my falling in love with indie music. I placed my first mail orders with them. I remember hearing Geniuses of Crack on CBC radio's "Brave New Waves" and sought out this 7" which was released in 1992 on Homestead Records. The song appears on their Deep End LP too, but I wanted to rip this scratchy vinyl version for old time's sake. It's a fine sad little song. I got to hear Tsunami in Winnipeg around 1994 and band member Kristen Thomson made my night by remembering me from my orders when I picked up some merch.

Side A - Tsunami - Geniuses of Crack [4 stars mp3]

Thumbling - Butterfield Eight

In 1993, Chip Porter began "a compilation series of mellifluent space rock" called Kometen Melodies on his Audrey's Diary label out of Howell, Michigan. Volume 1 featured Thumbling on Side A, and Chip's own band Sabine (featured on YSKOD last week) was caught on the flipside. Thumbling's contribution proves more successful, at least to my ears. "Butterfield Eight" is classic build-then-destroy space rock, starting out gently before sticking it to your three small bones. It'll make your hammer knock, your anvil clang, and your stirrup stir. Your tempanic membrane will flutter, and your cochlea hairs will send tingles up your auditory nerve into your auditory cortex, which will connect to your knee bone (everything does) to give you a blissed-out patellar-reflex kick. Possibly. To my knowledge, this series stalled out at Volume The First, so it's not really a series, but rather a tasty slab of ephemera.

Side A - Thumbing - Butterfield Eight [4 stars mp3]

The Summer Hits - Mod Cinema

Bloody shambolic noisy indie pop glory, that's what this 7" single by California's The Summer Hits is. I'll even end a sentence with "is" it's so good. Unleashed on a still-duped world in 1995 on Silver Girl records, 1000 Moments of Natural Flotation shows how little progress has been made in indie pop in 12 years. Thankfully.

Side B - The Summer Hits - Mod Cinema [4 stars mp3]

Strapping Fieldhands - Discus

According to their website (which kindly provides 2 mp3s from each of their other three albums and a detailed bio), Philly, PA's Strapping Fieldhands' "Discus" LP was listed on Spin's "One of the Ten Best Records You've Never Heard" list in 1994. It was released only on vinyl, on the band's own Omphalos Records label, so it's no wonder many folks have never heard it. It features 7 great songs (I counted...) in the style of Syd Barrett and The Television Personalities...and another 10 "experiments" that are consistently interesting if not hype-machine inducing.

Here's a straightforward indie pop singalong:
Side A - Strapping Fieldhands - Boo Hoo Hoo [4 stars mp3]

And here's a song whose opening line is "Divide 114 by 67, you get baloney closet". Somehow it adds up, while souding nice and Neutral Milky in between all the Sydness.

Side A - Strapping Fieldhands - Lonnie Donnegan's Mum's Tea Closet [4 stars mp3]

Smog - Mice

Ah, heck, it's a long weekend and there are plenty of S-bands to go around, so let's pour us another round. Let's start with another lo-fi riser. Just as D.C. Berman of the Silver Jews went on to develop some serious singer-songwriter alt-country chops, Bill Callahan of Smog has also come a long way, baby. Not that "Mice" or the other five bits of song on 1991's 7" EP Floating, also on Drag City, aren't enjoyable, but it's a quantum leap from here to "A River Ain't Too Much To Love". Still, it's fun to retrace the steps. Careful not to miss the bottom stair.

Side A - Smog - Mice [4 stars mp3]

Silver Jews - Canada

The first release by The Silver Jews was this Dime Map of the Reef 7" EP, put out by Drag City in 1992. It's a fun lo-fi mess. Steve Malkmus of Pavement fame sings on some of the songs, including this one, credited as "Hazel Figurine". I think there's even a line about Alberta in here somewhere.

Side A - The Silver Jews - Canada [4 stars mp3]

Shiva Affect - Rest Is Easy

Shiva Affect were one of the better (and certainly most obscure) UK shoegazer/spacerock outfits from the mid 90s. They released this 7" (b/w a different version of Pitch Black from that on the 10"), a 10" (Road Movie), and an album (Yahweh), and not much else as far as I can tell. Sadly, both their vinyl releases were poorly pressed, but sound-quality aside, songs like Rest Is Easy are rare and tasty treats. Only 1000 copies of this 7" lept out of Frog Records' stacks back in 1994.

Side A - Shiva Affect - Rest Is Easy [5 stars mp3]

Sabine - The Serf to the Level of the Lord

Inspired by bands like Bark Psychosis and Spacemen 3, Christopher Porter's band Sabine were fine purveyors of space rock. This song lined the A-side of their 1996 Wurlitzer Jukebox 7". And now it's on YSKOD just in time for Easter Sunday. Lordy.

Side A - Sabine - The Serf To The Level Of The Lord [4 stars mp3]

The Ropers - Pretty Quiet Song/Sweet Lord I Know

OK, enough cruelty. For now. Another band I've been itching to convert to mp3 are The Ropers. I think The Ropers were one of the most underrated indie pop bands of the mid-90s (there were millions and millions of said bands, you know), and I think their early songs still sound glorious.

"Pretty Quiet Song" was released on I Wish I Was A Slumberland Record, as one half of a split tour-single with Boyracer, back in 1994.

Side B - The Ropers - Pretty Quiet Song [4 stars mp3]

But for me, the real pop gem nugget is "Sweet Lord I Know", released the same year, as a co-release between Richmond, Virginia's Brilliant Records and Germany's Giant Pool Balls Records. This record is also a split single, and features two songs by The Tribbles on the B side (one of which is also worth mining/pining for, and will show up on YSKOD eventually). If you can resist the harmonies and mope in this song, then perhaps you're still pissed at me for not posting those Ride songs. The rest of us have forgiven me (including me!), and we will turn this up and tingle away. Ahhhh...

Side A - The Ropers - Sweet Lord I Know [5 stars mp3]

Ride - Sight of You/Deliverance

Speaking of records I've been yearning to burn, this unofficial 7" from 1990 was at the very top of my list...until I stumbled across the excellent 2003 Ride compilation "Waves" (featuring 17 BBC recordings from 1990-94). Ride is one of my favourite shoegazer bands, and I love both songs on this 7". Both songs are covers, too: "Sight of You" is a classic Pale Saints song, and "Deliverance" is actually "Severance" by Dead Can Dance. This record is one of the highlights of my collection. Only 500 copies were pressed in the UK, on lovely marbled purple vinyl no less. But, I have the songs on mp3, so there was no need to burn 'em. So, as you have deduced, this post is really just me bragging and torturing you for no good reason. But I'm about to post some other solid R-product to assuage my guilt. Do seek out the compilation if you're a fan.

Reverb - Aftertouch

Resist the broken record pun. Resist the broken record pun.

I keep coming back to the Tangible Box Set for my posts. This isn't surprising, because when I bought my USB turntable, I was most excited about converting just this type o'stuff. So here's yet another bringing-into-contact for you, this time from Reverb, a one-off side project featuring Anton Newcombe of Brian Jonestown Massacre...

Here's some knowledge from the BJM discography on Wikipedia:
"In 1993 Bomp! Records and Tangible Records coreleased a boxed-set of 6 singles, each by a different San Francisco "psych" band. The bands were apparently handpicked by Anton Newcombe himself, and it is rumored that he also produced the music. Besides the Brian Jonestown Massacre, the bands include Orange, Nebtwister, and Hollowbody. The other two singles (as credited to Acid and Reverb) are 4-track demos by Newcombe and Travis Threlkel (who designed the box-cover and record sleeves)."

Side A - Reverb - Aftertouch [4 stars mp3]

Refrigerator - How You Continue Blogging

Sometimes the vinyl conversion gods shine on you, sometimes they don't. Actually, typically they don't, the bastards. Yesterday I noticed for the first time that my Audacity software and my Mac's Audio MIDI Setup Control Panel have been wrestling over whether to encode at 16 or 24 bits. Audio MIDI wants 24! Audacity wants 16! It turns out they've both been rather obstinate since Vinyl-Rip The First, and as a result, there has been a quality-reducing mismatch present in all the songs I've posted to date (I think). I've found a way to pin Audio MIDI to the mat now (I think). We'll see if the difference is even detectable. Unfortunately, all the R-songs posted this week were recorded after I detected the problem.

And lo, I faced many other challenges when recording Refrigerator's 20-song "How You Continue Dreaming" LP, from 1994, on Communion Records. I'll spare you a subset of the gory details. But who knew that "Party Hat" consists of two small, separate blobs of soundwave? Not I. Or that "727" and "Hydrogen Suitcase", though coexisting as one blob of soundwave, actually constitute one song? No, not I.

And then, after finally wrestling this 20-headed hydra into iTunes, I learned that the album is readily available via the iTunes store! For pennies a glass (well, not quite...)!

Thankfully, I was able to reap some consolation by listening to some of the smoldering folk-tinged numbers on the album, such as "Colton" and "Speedway", and some of the sad ones like "Old City Cool", and some of the poppy ones like "Bicycle", and some of the indie-rock runaways like "Sorry State Line". It's a lo-fi epic, really. Very nearly worth the effort!

In the liner note, the band writes "thank you for your time". I can't imagine the trials and tribulations that artists must go through when making music, given that I have this much trouble just bringing a few mp3s your way. I really ought to thank the band for THEIR time, and for letting me bring some of their songs your way. Just as all you mp3-blog-visitors diligently take the time to thank the blogger for bringing the songs your way. Just kidding. I rarely post comments myself. But thanks to those fine, rare folks who have visited and posted comments thus far...YSKOD topped the 1,000 visitor mark last week.

Here's two tracks:

Side A - Refrigerator - Colton [4 stars mp3]
Side A - Refrigerator - Bicycle [3 stars mp3]

P.S. There was not Q-band one in the house (on vinyl).