Monday, December 31, 2012

Dirt City Chronicles- Year in Review 2012

Rerun: Femme Fatale/ Lorraine Lewis      October 7th 2012

 Femme Fatale blasted out of Albuquerque, quickly landing a record deal with MCA.  They would sell 200,000 copies of their debut album, the videos for "Waiting For The Big One" and "Falling In and Out of Love" received massive airplay on MTV. Then just as rapidly it all fell apart and the band dissolved.  Femme Fatale  was best known for the big voice, big hair and sex appeal of lead singer Lorraine Lewis

Ultimately, the band was flawed and after just one fairly successful album they broke apart faster than a Yugo.  What happened? the success of the first album was enough to warrant another two albums and a few rounds of touring. Lorraine offered an explanation in an interview with a Spanish metal music 'zine "The days of the big hair metal bands were finished, it was all about timing." Their label MCA felt that they had peaked after just one album, and the band was cut loose.

Empire of Dirt      Oct. 13th  2012

Who was Ivo and what happened to him? Many links and Google searches later and I still don't have a clue. I imagine that he was a hard wired, intense guy who sported tribal ink and zubaz long before that became a cartoonish stereotype.  I could be wrong, after all for years, I actually thought that Capt America (Albuquerque's iconic zinester) was a grumpy old guy who wore a bandanna, smoked Lucky Strikes and lurked around clubs. 

The times they are-a-changing and I prefer to change with them.  The irony is that in my quest to find Ivo, I've become Ivo.  So, is it time to kill Ivo? Perhaps a sudden deployment to Afghanistan during which he's last seen hiking into the Hindu Kush  with a backpack full of hashish? LOL! Fucking Ivo gives the brass the bird, pops Tool's Undertow into his Sony Walkman and strolls off into the mist. In heaven everday is Feb. 1st. 1995. 

Sleaze Rock     Oct. 14th. 2012

Pitbull - Hotel Room Service.  Pitbull, does this thing where he arches one eyebrow and smirks, that in a nutshell is what he does.  He can't sing, rap or dance for shit and yet this human floater pops up everywhere. That recent Walmart  ad campaign (Let's send Pitbull to Kodiak,Ak!) was as fake as Joe Arpaio's hair.   Top YouTube Comment: 99% porn 1% music  0% hair   

 Girl Gone Wild (Remix) by Madonna. Flamboyant homos sans chemise (actually Ukranian boy-band Kazaky) and enough gay imagery to make Don Cathy spit out his Chik Fil A milkshake and touch himself in an inappropirate manner.  I'm in total agreement when she sings "I know I shouldn't act this way" the old skeezer should act her age. 

"Disrepect"  pairs up Dutch hardstyle DJs, Headhunterz (Willem Regergen) and Psyko Punkz (Sven Sieperda & Wietse Amersfoort) The homophobic slurs are disgusting and their phony gangsta posturing ain't fooling anyone. Hardstyle is the Euro version of the dubstep beats that we've grown to hate so much. 

Jars Of Clay's Five Candles (You Were There), tis'  bland, innocuous generic Christian rock that you be wanting? From the album "Much Afraid" based on Hannah Hurnard's  allegorical  novel , "Hind Feet on High Places" Not much to be afraid of, these boys are harmless (though pretentious as fuck) Top YouTube comment: This is a song about a really crappy parent 

Death By Misadventure- Robert Johnson        Oct. 28th  2012

Both Papa Legba and Ellegua are known as the gods or guardians of the crossroads. Thus grew the legend of "going down to the crossroads to make a pact with the devil" Blues scholars would have you believe that when African Americans in the South spoke of "selling  their soul to the devil" that they meant something other than the Satanic version that we know so well.  Maybe so, but as a church going man that he once was, I bet that Robert Johnson had the horned red devil holding a pitchfork in mind as he composed his lyrics. 

Son  House, who knew Johnson as a boy said that he "was a competent harmonica player  but  an embarrassingly bad guitarist" That would change once he hooked up with Ike Zimmerman,  an obscure musician rumored to have learned his guitar technique by playing in graveyards while sitting on a tombstone at midnight.  After a few trips to the graveyard with Zimmerman, Robert Johnson was suddenly possessed with an unearthly talent.  Johnson supposedly said that   they preferred to practice in the graveyard, so as not to bother anyone.

A churchified  man at first, Johnson set out to do things the right way, he married  Caletta Craft in May 1931 and  settled down in Clarksdale, Ms. Caletta is said to have died during childbirth while Johnson was on the road playing music. Her family condemned him  for playing "the devil's music" and blamed him indirectly for her death. He abandoned all attempts at living a normal life and took to the road as an itinerant musician. Whether or not, this  led  him to associate himself with the devil in his music or enter into a Faustian bargain is up for debate.

Old Gray Mule- Like A Apple On A Tree    Oct. 29th  2012

Now we've come full circle, with the hill country blues the past is every bit as important as the present.  A new generation of bluesmen have sprouted forth from the flood plains, hill country and beyond. Youngbloods ready, able and worthy of carrying on the legacy of R.L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough  

Never mind Muscle Shoals, the swampers are pickin' you up when you're feelin' blue, right in Central Texas. Old Gray Mule's "Like a Apple on a Tree" is top effort for what the Austin Chronicle calls "Mississippi thunder and Lightnin’ with Lockhart shit-kickers"  These are songs ready made for a night on Greasy Street, but what would they know about that? 

Oral tradition was vital to the spread of the blues in the 1930s, and that still hasn't changed. Facebook, Twitter and the internet are nothing more than an updated version of "word of mouth" Put these words in your mouth, go forth and spread the gospel.

Old Gray Mule is C.R. Humphrey of Lockhart, Tx. "BBQ capital of the World!" 

Sleaze Rock          Nov.  3rd.   2012

OMG! they killed Kenny!, no such luck, he's still alive, although Billy Squier should kill Kenny (Ortega) for flushing his career down the crapper with one epic video. Ortega (of High School, the musical fame) directed Squier's Rock me Tonite, which is often cited as the worst music video ever made.

Rasheeda is a thirty something female rapper who likes to get nasty. The YouTube comments were so good that I added nothing, the lyrics & comments speak for themselves. Sadly the best comments have been purged from YouTube.  As a matter of personal choice, I would prefer Kelis' Milkshakes to Rasheeda's masticated Bubblegum.

Last and certainly least, some random shirtless dudes totally screw the pooch with a cover of Sweet Child 'O Mine. The best part of the video is at the end, when the guitarist looks at his "band mate" as if to say "We fuckin' nailed it!" the drummer then gets up to turn off the video recorder and he has a look on his face that says "This one is a keeper!"

Say "Crunk" again. I dare you. I double-dare you  Nov. 29th  2012

Time to revisit Brokencyde, just in time for the holidaze and the release of  "Best of BC13" ... which is  a misogynistic, bukkake spooge fest  of "Albucrazy, Hot Topic screamo", designed to rankle the sensitive sensibilities of sensible folks, who may not otherwise give a fuck! and to separate some more suckers from their hard earned dollars. Seventeen delightful tracks from these Albuquerque gangsta poseurs  shamelessly fronting about pussy they've never had and a libertine scene that they're not really a part of.

AWWW WAIT HOLD UP!... WAIT A MINUTE!, wouldn't "BEST OF"  imply that this shit is actually good? 

It would and it isn't..... What you really have  (all in one neat package)  is a crap fest of attention grabs guaranteed to make someone threaten to kick your ass if you play them too loud. (available at iTunes, Best Buy and other distros with low standards and no qualms about selling shit like this)

Love 'em, hate 'em, hate 'em, hate 'em, they're not going away just yet. There are no grey areas with Brokencyde, you either hate them or despise them. This inane vomitorium of crunk and chunks isn't something that's going to grow on you without some effort.

What's the Word, Johannesburg        Dec. 2nd. 2012

At the end of Die Antwoord's "Zef Life" video, the interviewer asks Ninja what does Die Antwoord mean? Yolandi gives Ninja a look that says this guys is fokken clueless. Ninja's response "the answer" the interviewer asks "what does that mean" Ninja and Yolandi look at each other like the bloke had just shat his pants. Condescendingly, Ninja tells him "What ever man, fuck" if you have to ask, then you won't get it anway. Die Antwoord evolved out of all of Watkins Tudor-Jones different projects... throw enough shit at the wall and what sticks is bound to be some good shit. 

It's a blender mix of electro techno beats and old school gangsta rap. Ninja asks that age old question "What happened to all the cool rappers from back in the day?" By going back and rediscovering, a style a music that some had come to regard as trash, Tudor-Jones has hit on a winning formula. "Now all these rappers sound exactly the same, It's like one big inbred fuck-fest" Dregs like Lil Wayne & Kanye West is what passes for rap music now. "Just because the whole world's gone dwanky, Doesn't mean we fuckin' gonna go out like that too"

Wat Kyk Jy. ( is the website that lit a fire under the whole zef thing in the first place.  Ninja & Yolandi took their early cues from Wak Kyk Jy. The track is an ode to "die beste Afrikaanse blog en website in die heelal" Wat kyk Jy literally translates to "What are you looking at?" or more specifically (as explained on the website Kameraad Mhambi) "It's the menacing words that you hear when you walk into a bar in Parys Free State and you fix you gaze on one of the patrons for too long. In other words, it's the last words you hear before you hit the floor. 

Lucky Fun Time Party          Dec. 17th  2012

"Gangnam Style" is a geeky celebration of having it all.... youth, money, time, women, style, attitude.  South Korea is rarely noted for being cool or fashionable, but for the first time in history they set the trend. "Gangnam Style" sports a sense of swagger that cuts across language barriers and cultural differences. It's the song that launched a thousands memes, parodies and led to grown ass,  white American males trotting around like a pony.

During 2012 nothing captured the moment quite like "Gangnam Style", but does that mindlessly inoffensive K-Pop tune signal  the apocalyptic end of all ends?  In a world where too many people have too much time on their hands, someone did the research. Nostradamus, who's predictions are always on the mark when viewed in retrospect, predicted that the calm morning, a dancing horse and nine zeroes would beckon the end of the world.

That worldwide dance craze known as "Gangnam Style" is infectiously appealing, thanks mostly to Korean pop singer PSY's "horsey dance" One plus Nine zeroes equals a billion, the number of views that the song (already the most viewed video ever) will soon have on YouTube.  If that's not enough to make you think... WTF?..... Korea, the birthplace of  "Gangnam Style" is also known as the "Land of the Morning Calm" 

Relate this to the apocalyptic prophesy of the Mayan Calendar (the end will come on Dec. 21, 2012) and you have a zany shitstorm of end times conspiracy fodder.  Just think, YouTube is now the ticking clock that's counting down towards the end of life as we know it.  All along, we thought that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the devil, when in fact it was PSY, a bland, dorky K-Pop rapper.