Sunday, March 1, 2015

Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 16

Veteran KOB anchorman, Tom Joles got into a verbal/physical altercation shortly before a broadcast. According to an eyewitness, “Joles interrupted while a young reporter was being counseled by News Director Michelle Donaldson. Reporter Stuart Dyson intervened, Joles traded F-bombs and punches with Dyson and photographer Joseph Lynch”
After order was restored, Joles packed up his belongings and left the station. Donaldson gathered the news staff and told them how her heart breaks for Joles and that he’s having a tough time adjusting to the modern era of TV news. KOB then issued a statement explaining Joles absence from the newscast as a “cool down period”
This is just damn fantastic. Look out – Howard Beale, Tom Joles is gonna getcha'. The online comments (not surprisingly) leaned towards Stuart Dyson more than deserving a punch in the face. Not a fair assumption by any means. Tom Joles (for reasons we'll never really know) had a cleansing moment of clarity and a wicked roundhouse right.... since Stuart did not take a knee, I will score that round 10-9 Joles.
Dyson as many of you may not know, was once a member of the Gutterleaves, an early 1990s cow punk outfit. This was long before he honed his skills as an investigative reporter at K-Circle-B in Albuquerque. Stuart is a much better reporter than musician as his KOB bio states “He plays guitar and sings with a wandering herd of local musicians who are much better than he is, although he makes up for his ineptitude by writing murder ballads and songs about cowgirls and moonshiners”
There's a handful of tracks on this episode from the Ubik compilation album “Carport Thunder Vol. 1” (to my knowledge there was never a Vol. 2) This rare cassette only release showcased what at the time (1991) had to be considered as the Murderer's Row of Albuquerque local bands (A Murder of Crows, Ant Farmers, Gutterleaves & Saddle Sores)

Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 16 is a high fueled melodic roar, audio octane for speed heads and gear jammers who keep hearing police sirens above the music. Perfect for hanging out in parking lots, smoking schwag, sippin' Schnapps and cranking Ant Farmers out the speakers in the old Ford ...... till some fuckin' old-timers put the kibosh on the party by calling APD. Hands up, don't shoot! ~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

You're on my Mind- The Withdrawals
Dr. Smithus- Ant Farmers
Everything's Fine- Strawberry Zots
Liberty- Cracks in the Sidewalk
Slackin' Off- Beat Fetish
Baby Needs- Angry Babies
Need- The Affections
Mary- Steve
Gravity- Saddlesores
The Ford- Ant Farmers
At My Home- Gutterleaves
99 Demons- A Murder of Crows
The 155 (True Faith)- The Rails
Blast Valve- Flake Music
Paper Doll- Steve
Mama Had a Peterbilt- Saddlesores
Elvis Bird- Ant Farmers
Melancholy- Saddlesores





Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 15

I come to bury rock, not praise it

1990 and we were blissfully unaware that radio was headed down a slippery slope on greasy wheels.  Rockers had fine-tuned their bullshit detectors and determined that the AOR charts in no way reflected the musical preference for a growing majority of  rock oriented listeners.  
Rock formatted stations were as ill fated as Alan Freed, who had bequeathed upon them the very name by which they set themselves apart from the dregs of contemporary Top 40 radio.
The trick, then and now is to stay one step ahead of your pretensions.  A lesson  overlooked by all the punk/new wave/no wave/post punk musicians. Yet, taken to heart by the tsunami of grunge bands ushered in by the unexpected rise of Nirvana.
Say what you want about grunge, but unlike the first wave of punk rockers... it was the people's music. The flannel wearing masses could relate and it was tailor made for the violent mosh pit culture that had mutated from the relatively  lame pogo and slam dance trends of the mid-70s.
Grunge coupled with the self indulgent, hubris prone Industrial/Nu-Metal scene came together to succeed where punk rock and new wave had failed by dominating both album sales and airplay.  Life for goths and heshers was fucking grand. Ooh ah ah ah Ooh ah ah ah! 
Then without warning, Kurt Cobain ate a round from a Remington 20 gauge shotgun and it all came tumbling down.  Hey man, nice shot. Before you could say “Rug Doctor” Rap music picked up the baton and blasted off like a rocket from the crypt.
Thus, we're now subjected to a steady dose of Beats by Dre, Eminem, Kanye West, Kim K, Jigga, Beyonce  and that ilk. The rest is history....  I just feel bad for the kids who wear Nirvana shirts because they think it is a brand.


Like a 90s rock jukebox gone out of control, episode #15 rolls in like one of Richard Linklater's slackers and grows on you like a mold. Somewhere out on the edge of Andromeda, where the quasars pulse with radioactive light, Jerry Garcia and Kurt Cobain fist fight in heaven. The whole thing is daft but engaging, bound together solely by an audio coding format which uses a form of lossy data compression. We know it as the MP3.   Yeah, hey, yay, get out my way... I'm a negative creep and I'm gone.                   


Cum-on and Luv me- Saddlesores
Ba Da Deeeeeee- The Withdrawals
At Dream's End- Apricot Jam
Holding Up the Sky- The Boheims
Wrong Train- The Muttz
Eyeball- Ant Farmers
Favorite Backyard- Mumble
What Am I to Do- The Withdrawals
Person You Were Meant to Be- Apricot Jam
Chinese Garden- January's Little Joke
The Haunting of Bloody Mary- Bellyachers
Carnivore- Steve
Winter- Apricot Jam


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Cruisin' with Crosno pt. 2 aircheck



Every Sunday afternoon the sound of Cruisin' With Crosno floated along the lower Rio Grande Valley... El Paso, Las Cruces, Hatch, Hot Springs, Anthony, Canutillo, Clint, Fabens, Tornillo. North to Alamogordo and the Tularosa basin, through the mountain gaps west into Deming and on good days, as far as Silver City. For those four hours the world belonged to Steve Crosno, and we were happy to be a part of it.

Let's set the stage.... it's an unexpectedly warm, Sunday afternoon, January 8th. 2006 in Southwestern New Mexico. The garage door is open, the stereo receiver is bumpin'. Shootin' hoops in the driveway, calling in dedications to Cruisin with Crosno, firing up the grill. A snapshot of a perfect moment. As the man himself puts it: “It's a beautiful day outside, everything is all right”

Sadly, Steve Crosno was in the twilight time of his life. The longtime popular radio host, arguably the most famous on-air personality the El Paso Borderplex ever had, died on Saturday, August 5th 2006 at his home in Mesilla Park, N.M.

~ Dirt City Chronicles ~


Cruisin' with Crosno pt. 1 aircheck


Every Sunday afternoon the sound of Cruisin' With Crosno floated along the lower Rio Grande Valley... El Paso, Las Cruces, Hatch, Hot Springs, Anthony, Canutillo, Clint, Fabens, Tornillo. North to Alamogordo and the Tularosa basin, through the mountain gaps west into Deming and on good days, as far as Silver City. For those four hours the world belonged to Steve Crosno, and we were happy to be a part of it.

Let's set the stage.... it's an unexpectedly warm, Sunday afternoon, January 8th. 2006 in Southwestern New Mexico. The garage door is open, the stereo receiver is bumpin'. Shootin' hoops in the driveway, calling in dedications to Cruisin with Crosno, firing up the grill. A snapshot of a perfect moment. As the man himself puts it: “It's a beautiful day outside, everything is all right”

Sadly, Steve Crosno was in the twilight time of his life. The longtime popular radio host, arguably the most famous on-air personality the El Paso Borderplex ever had, died on Saturday, August 5th 2006 at his home in Mesilla Park, N.M.

~ Dirt City Chronicles ~





KHRO Hero Radio El Paso, Tx. segment # 2 aircheck



KHRO Hero Radio El Paso, Tx. Aircheck, segment #2
The much lamented (by some, reviled by others) KHRO (Hero 94.7) a short lived alternative rock station in El Paso, Tx. Not a big fan of the station, but with rumors of a planned format change to Mexican Regional music floating around, I tuned in from Deming, N.M., 100 miles from El Paso and set out to aircheck the death throes of a "modern rock" station. KHRO was saddled with a lame as hell format and "let's throw shit at the wall to see what sticks" program direction. The smell of decay was in the air and the buzzard (overt Buzz Adams reference) was circling overhead. I eventually wound up with a half dozen 90 minute cassettes documenting Hero radio's Thanksgiving Unplugged marathon, Nov. 2004. ~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

HERO began with a "soft" transition from playing tunes like "Funky Town," to playing the living hell out of crappy bands like Smashmouth (another cover!) and Third Eye Blind (though I must admit there’s a soft spot in my heart for "How’s It Gonna Be"). I sat through this "crap" knowing the direction we were going in. Soon, we’d bust on the harder stuff like System of a Down and Korn, and then to my delight, we’d move into bands like Modest Mouse and Interpol. HERO blossomed into a full Modern Rock operation before the year was over and we were all thrilled with our public’s response.
My job consisted of branding my station and making sure that we had a solid public image. I also made sure that we were involved with lifestyle events that concerned our listeners. One day we’d be pushing a metal show, the next day it’d be a snotty indie rock happening, then it’d be a monster show like the Warped Tour. El Pasoans that didn’t listen to our station were thanking us for giving our town that big-city vibe. People had shows to see, now more than ever, and it wasn’t The Scorpions...again.
HERO made it possible for bands like The Strokes, Morrissey, Deftones, Ministry, 311, Disturbed, Soulfly, and countless others to come play the Sun City. Not only did they come play the Sun City, they SOLD OUT the Sun City, something I knew we’d always been capable of.
Here’s a bit of trivia-HERO’s first show was Tool at the El Paso County Coliseum, where we barged in and claimed it as ours. HERO’s first official show was Moby at the Pan Am Center, and our last show, was one that we co-promoted directly with the band’s management-- Korn at the El Paso County Coliseum (7,100 listeners in attendance). That last show was the hardest for me to work, as I was already clued into the change that was about to take our city by storm–HERO would be flipping formats to Spanish Pop/Rock come December 1. (Transitioning from HERO to Super Star, Marina Monsisvais)

HERO Radio: Where's Your Wallet?
December 16, 2004 - Martín Paredes
It seems like El Pasoans have this attitude, an attitude that everything wrong in society is business and business owes them. Nothing exemplifies this more than the demise of HERO radio. Letters to the editor, calls to local radio stations and even the former promotions director of HERO talking about what a great station HERO radio was. But was it really?
No, this isn’t about whether the music was good, contemporary or other, it is about the so-called fans supporting the station they so loved, or so they say. It is about what drives business and what drives it away. It’s about talking with your wallet rather than with your mouth. Sure it’s wonderful to hear what a good job you are doing, especially in times of dire-straights but talk can only feed one thing, your soul, it does nothing for the stomach pains of hunger. It’s about supporting that which appeals to you and ignoring that which doesn’t. It’s about the basics of economics, something El Pasoans are loathe to accept, something that keeps biting them back each and every time change is made by corporate offices.
So you liked HERO radio, huh? Let’s do a little soul searching; did you frequent the businesses that advertised on it? Did you eat at the restaurants that paid good money to promote the station? Better yet, did you buy advertising or encourage your friends to advertise on it? No, then why do you feel the need to complain about a business decision?


KHRO Hero Radio, El Paso, Tx. Segment #1 aircheck




KHRO Hero Radio El Paso, Tx. Aircheck, segment #1
The much lamented (by some, reviled by others) KHRO (Hero 94.7) a short lived alternative rock station in El Paso, Tx. Not a big fan of the station, but with rumors of a planned format change to Mexican Regional music floating around, I tuned in from Deming, N.M., 100 miles from El Paso and set out to aircheck the death throes of a "modern rock" station. KHRO was saddled with a lame as hell format and "let's throw shit at the wall to see what sticks" program direction. The smell of decay was in the air and the buzzard (overt Buzz Adams reference) was circling overhead. I eventually wound up with a half dozen 90 minute cassettes documenting Hero radio's Thanksgiving Unplugged marathon, Nov. 2004. ~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

HERO began with a "soft" transition from playing tunes like "Funky Town," to playing the living hell out of crappy bands like Smashmouth (another cover!) and Third Eye Blind (though I must admit there’s a soft spot in my heart for "How’s It Gonna Be"). I sat through this "crap" knowing the direction we were going in. Soon, we’d bust on the harder stuff like System of a Down and Korn, and then to my delight, we’d move into bands like Modest Mouse and Interpol. HERO blossomed into a full Modern Rock operation before the year was over and we were all thrilled with our public’s response.
My job consisted of branding my station and making sure that we had a solid public image. I also made sure that we were involved with lifestyle events that concerned our listeners. One day we’d be pushing a metal show, the next day it’d be a snotty indie rock happening, then it’d be a monster show like the Warped Tour. El Pasoans that didn’t listen to our station were thanking us for giving our town that big-city vibe. People had shows to see, now more than ever, and it wasn’t The Scorpions...again.
HERO made it possible for bands like The Strokes, Morrissey, Deftones, Ministry, 311, Disturbed, Soulfly, and countless others to come play the Sun City. Not only did they come play the Sun City, they SOLD OUT the Sun City, something I knew we’d always been capable of.
Here’s a bit of trivia-HERO’s first show was Tool at the El Paso County Coliseum, where we barged in and claimed it as ours. HERO’s first official show was Moby at the Pan Am Center, and our last show, was one that we co-promoted directly with the band’s management-- Korn at the El Paso County Coliseum (7,100 listeners in attendance). That last show was the hardest for me to work, as I was already clued into the change that was about to take our city by storm–HERO would be flipping formats to Spanish Pop/Rock come December 1. (Transitioning from HERO to Super Star, Marina Monsisvais)

HERO Radio: Where's Your Wallet?
December 16, 2004 - Martín Paredes
It seems like El Pasoans have this attitude, an attitude that everything wrong in society is business and business owes them. Nothing exemplifies this more than the demise of HERO radio. Letters to the editor, calls to local radio stations and even the former promotions director of HERO talking about what a great station HERO radio was. But was it really?
No, this isn’t about whether the music was good, contemporary or other, it is about the so-called fans supporting the station they so loved, or so they say. It is about what drives business and what drives it away. It’s about talking with your wallet rather than with your mouth. Sure it’s wonderful to hear what a good job you are doing, especially in times of dire-straights but talk can only feed one thing, your soul, it does nothing for the stomach pains of hunger. It’s about supporting that which appeals to you and ignoring that which doesn’t. It’s about the basics of economics, something El Pasoans are loathe to accept, something that keeps biting them back each and every time change is made by corporate offices.
So you liked HERO radio, huh? Let’s do a little soul searching; did you frequent the businesses that advertised on it? Did you eat at the restaurants that paid good money to promote the station? Better yet, did you buy advertising or encourage your friends to advertise on it? No, then why do you feel the need to complain about a business decision?


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 14



1989 was the bellwether year for Albuquerque's modern music era as the Duke City's nascent music scene finally pulled free of past stylistic associations in a sudden rush of DYI mania. Bold ideas delivered via less than adequate resources.
What was the origin of this unexpected surge of hip credibility upon what up until then had been the exclusive domain of plodding cover bands and big hair metal combos? 
No big mystery there. Like other college towns (Athens, Seattle, Austin, Chapel Hill, Tucson) Albuquerque became a mecca for above average collegiate smart asses goosestepping along with jangle rock/indie movement as it swept across America in all its lo-fi splendor. 
The stripped down minimalism and sad-sack pathos fit right in with “Burque's sense of desperation and almost pathological need for validation. This sloppy spirited awakening took root and just like a typical New Mexican weed, thrived under conditions that would kill off less hearty types. Albuquerque's music scene has never quite blended into any particular style. But, looking back in retrospect, the period between 1989-1999 was as close to a definitive “Duke City Sound” as we'll ever get. 

What do the critics think?... 
“Dirt City Chronicles podcast is the best microcosmic document yet of an erratic, invigorating and ever evolving local music scene” ~ The Rocky Mountain Oyster ~
“A postcard from the edge” ~ Mogollon Rim Review ~
“Southwestern Culture on the Skids” ~ Deming Graphic ~
“A nice break from 'Burque's typically folk driven guitar-rock (with banjo)” ~ The Deseret Gazette ~
“Dirt City Chronicles, better than one stop shopping on Record Day” ~ The Lordsburg Liberal ~

Boy Howdy! A nifty compilation of well-played, tuneful tunes that thunder along with concise energy and total whimsy. it's the opportunity for newcomers to glean a sensible summary of Albuquerque's long and storied musical history without spending hours mining the internet or digging through crates searching for insanely rare vinyl
~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

A Little Love (It's Alright) Lizard House
Breaker 19- Ant Farmers
Cracked From the Sun- Dead Leonard
And you Drive your Pretty Car- Strawberry Zots
Yeah- Elephant
Ycrad- Allucaneat
Kill- Angry Babies
Lockit- Naomi
Beautiful- Bellyachers
Girl in the Cake- Ant Farmers
Trans Am- Elephant
Kids I Hate- Ant Farmers
Waste of Time- Strawberry Zots
Kreig (One Black Crayon) January's Little Joke
Cast in Stone- Dead Leonard
Take Your Time- Lizard House
Colors- Lost Souls
Plastic Diamond Ring- Mumble
Bella- Naomi
Just the Beginning- The Affections
Get Me to the World on Time- Strawberry Zots
Spikey Aardvark- Treadmill
Brown Tablet- Ant Farmers
Piano in the Woods- Lizard House


Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 13



Nevermind The Bullocks, Here's Dirt City Chronicles

The end of the Mayan calendar's 13th Baktun was feared as a harbinger of the apocalyptic 2012 phenomenon. It's now three years on, so we can surmise that the Mayans were either wrong or bad at math.
You don't need algebra to cipher out the baker's dozen. The long measure is 13 and on the thirteenth day of the second month, let's cast aside our triskaidekaphobia. Saint Anthony of Padua has graced us and we have nothing to fear.
Love and pollen are in the air. The cold north wind is the harbinger of winter, the devouring one, strong and unruly. The Zephyr by contrast is the gentlest of winds, the messenger of spring, which we now await.

For the fundamental truth is self determination of the cosmos, for dark is the suede that mows like a harvest and loud is the sound that cuts through the ghostly netherworld, fused with seductive menace, shimmering with mystery. 
These are the shadow lands, where ancient dramas of love, lust, beauty, and despair are enacted night after night. "the sound of someone as maddened as they are enthralled, aglow with anger and passion" A ghost world of dope addled paranoia, dissolving identity, suffocated love, sexual turmoil and oblique violence. 
Sounds like a typical Saturday Night in downtown 'Burque to me.... Audi 5000 ~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

Significant Bummer- Partman Parthorse
I Like to Die- The Drags
Drink for Free- Bovine
Blondie- Bring Back Dad
Secret Spy- The Eyeliners
Gracchi Saturday Night- The Gracchi
Yeah!- Elephant
Lil' Dude- Partman Parthorse
Ditch Troll- Racist Cop
About the Girl Next Door- The Meek
Sissy Boy- Bring Back Dad
Standing on the Corner- The Gracchi
Postal- The Eyeliners
Punk Rod- Beefcake in Chains
Automatic- Scared of Chaka
Think of Me- The Eyeliners
Sweet- Volume Volume
Trans Am- Elephant
Do Pot- Racist Cop 
Threw it Away- The Gracchi
Minneapolis- Bring Back Dad
Beefcake in Chains- Beefcake in Chains
Headache- The Eyeliners


Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 12



Albuquerque, N.M. “Mile High and Loud as Hell” Dirt City Chronicles is a gritty, low budget repository of local music, produced by the plethora of New Mexico based musicians and beyond. So, sit back, pick the grit out your teeth and tap along to an eclectic cacophony of original music, thirty plus years in the making.

On the television series Sons of Anarchy they are portrayed as one dimensional cartoonish thugs who stumble from one disastrous criminal venture to another. 
Yet, I've always found the Mayans MC more intriguing than the Sons. In true Bushido fashion they march off to their deaths like ape hanger kamikaze pilots. Emotionless and stoic, they have the life expectancy of a fruit fly. A steadfast rush without any clue as to what lays ahead, fools rush in... or so they say. Do Mayans dream of electric jaguars?, fuck if I know

Episode 12, chock full of manic tension and disarming charm. Accelerating like a hard rock machine, fueled by thrash riffs, trash vocals, spaghetti western twang and go fuck yourself attitude. You'll figure it out. ~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

An Empty Apartment- Swales
Heart Throbbin'- Romeo Goes To Hell
Vomit Rocket- Pan!c
Don't Ask- Stabbed in Back
Overload- Weird A
Neighborhood- The Unemploid
Zozobra- The Leaky Faces
The Drinking Song- Arroyo Deathmatch
12 Pack Lovin'- The Rum Fits
Between my Teeth- Romeo Goes To Hell 
Should I Buy it or Sell It- Adobe Homes
Herman Melville- Levi the Poet
Going to California- The Leaky Faces
GIN- The Vassar Bastards
Head Damage- Weird A
Steam- The Leaky Faces
Urban Graves for Fetal Sharks- Arroyo Deathmatch
Memorial Day- Stabbed in Back
Redneck- The Unemploid
Blue Balls- Swales
Symbols- Swales
Where are You- The Leaky Faces
We Love the Burning Silos- The Burning Silos


Dirt City Chronicles podcast episode 11


Albuquerque, N.M. “Mile High and Loud as Hell” Dirt City Chronicles is a gritty, low budget repository of local music, produced by the plethora of New Mexico based musicians and beyond. So, sit back, pick the grit out your teeth and tap along to an eclectic cacophony of original music, thirty plus years in the making.

Big bottom metal, locomotive guitar riffs and laconic drums beats, whipping up a head of steam... I miss the days when this type of music set you apart. It's practically gone now. Driven off by the legion of angst driven emo /screamo /math rock posers that flooded “Burque's music scene like a horde of rats after dark in an abandoned cheese factory

Heavy is thy name, Wino Weinrich is thy God. Crank out that I drink cheap beer and bong hit schwag all night type of music, that I smoke angel dust, drop acid and seek out mayhem type of music... that's the shit. So low, it's been real. I'm leaning fast into the twisted night. The forecast calls for doom, better bust out your iron brolly
~ Dirt City Chronicles ~

Shanty- Catfish Hunter
Pistol Star- SuperGiant
Head On Collision- Black Maria
Doghouse- Unclean
Snow Plow- Space Truckers
Hellucination- Tendorizor
Bedford- Catfish Hunter
Mountain Candy Rape- Leeches of Lore
Antares- SuperGiant
Ear Banger- Space Truckers
End of it All- Treadmill
Witness- Catfish Hunter
Lady Cop- Black Maria
Retribution Shot- Space Truckers
Unkept- The Ground Beneath
Ramble Song- The Dirty Clydes
Court of Kings- Five Hundred
Gateway- Winterlock
Soul Crusher- Catfish Hunter
The Agent- Sincerely