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Archive for the ‘NOFX’ Category

SOUNDTRACK: SINGLE MOTHERS-“Marbles” (2014).

Single Mothers has been together in one way or another for years.  In fact their blurb says

Single Mothers broke up in 2009 and have been playing shows ever since.

I had not heard of this London, Ontario band until reading this story from Evan Redsky, so I wanted to find a song that he played on.  Their lineup was everchanging and as far as I can tell this album, Negative Qualities, is the only one he played bass on.

Negative Qualities has a classic punk sound with a twenty-first century production quality.  The songs are short and fast (most are around two minutes).

One of the more important things for a band like this is how the vocalist comes across.  Drew Thompson screams melodically and, more importantly, clearly enough that you can hear most of the words.

I picked this song, the second on the album because it opens with a great rumbling wall from bass from Redsky and this fantastic lyrical verse, bridge and chorus

She’s like
Blah, blah, blah, blah
Something ’bout McSweeney’s
Something ’bout her thesis
Something ’bout it’s meaning
Something ’bout whatever
Something like
“Why do you gotta be so mean?”

‘Cause I don’t care about your first editions
And I don’t care about your typewriter ribbons
I don’t care about your punctuation
Puncture wounds
That you’re trying to inflict me with

‘Cause I’m a hypocrite
And I’m okay with it
And I’m so self-aware
That it’s crippling
At least I don’t pretend my whole life’s held together by bookends

The whole album is really good.  While exploring their bandcamp site, I found their first EP (with longer songs and a slightly different sound) to also be excellent.

[READ: December 2019] “Smack Dab in the Metal”

The December 2019 issue of the West End Phoenix focused on Indigenous People.  Most of the writers were Indigenous and the news stories shone a light on Indigenous issues.  Much of the presence of Indigenous peoples is seen through their art–whether through beads, paint or sculpture, the images are often quite striking.  The issue even included a “colour me” page with a striking image from Taylor Cameron, a 23-year-old Anishinaabe artist from Saugeen First Nation (I can’t find an image online).

To a Polish person, the name Evan Redsky sounds Polish or Russian, but I can clearly see that it is not.

Redsky is a musician.  He has released some solo material, but he is perhaps best known as the bassist for Single Mothers.  That’s how this piece opens anyway.

He says in his later teens and early twenties he traveled the globe with this punk band (that I hadn’t heard of).

There’s nothing too unusual about a teenage boy being in a punk band.  But the fact that Redsky is Ojibway from Mississaugi First Nation in Northern Ontario is pretty unusual–especially in the punk/metal scene. (more…)

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jun9SOUNDTRACK: NICOTINE-“Yesterday” (2005).

dudeSince this story is about a guy making up words to “Yesterday,” I thought I’d find a cover of it.  Evidently there are several hundred covers to choose from, so I chose this one, from a band I didn’t know.

As you might judge by the cover, this is a punk version of the song.  But what a little research tells me is that Nicotine is a Japanese punk pop band.  And you can hear in Howie’s vocals that although his English is quite good, his accent shows up at certain moments.

The guitar starts out nicely, in a non-punk way.  Then when the vocals kicks in, you will either love it or hate it camp.  Howie’s voice is kind of whiny/bratty sounding, making the song either funny or irritating depending.

After the first verse, the band turns into the kind of fast pop punk that NOFX does–speedy drums, heavy guitars, etc.  Interestingly, his voice doesn’t speed up for the verses which makes the contrast all the more striking.

The album pictured above is indeed a full album of Beatles covers (the band seems to do a lot of covers), most of which are entertaining enough to listen to more than once.

[READ: September 17, 2014] “Yesterday”

As this story opens the narrator says

As far as I know, the only person to put Japanese lyrics to the Beatles song “Yesterday” (and to do so in the distinctive Kansai dialect, no less) was a guy named Kitaru.  He used to belt out his own version when he was taking a bath:

Yesterday
Is two days before tomorrow
The day after two days ago.

While “Yesterday” features prominently in the story, it is really a story of love and romance and friendship.  The narrator met Kitaru at the coffee shop where they worked.  There is a great deal of emphasis placed on Kitaru’s use of the Kansai dialect (which I know little about except to know that it is not the dialect of Tokyo).  The strange thing about Kitaru (well, one of the strange things) is that he was born in Tokyo.  But he adopted the Kansai dialect because he was a fan of the Hanshin Tigers.  He was such a big fan that he learned their dialect to be able to communicate with the fans when he went to the games.  (Learning Kansai is apparently like learning another language).  He was so into it, that he spoke it all the time.

The narrator, on the other hand, grew up speaking Kansai but after living in Tokyo for a month, he became fluent in Tokyo Standard (which also shows how odd it for Kitaru to do this).

This is mostly set up to show how odd Kitaru is.  Kitaru is a super nice guy and is clearly smart (if he learned the dialect), and yet he has failed his college entrance exam twice.  This is a problem because his girlfriend, the very pretty Erika, got into college on her first try, and he says he can’t date her properly unless he is also in college.  He and Erika have known each other for ever and are romantic without actually “doing ” anything.  He admits that he thinks of her almost like a sister and can’t imagine touching her in that way.  They are super close, and he considers her his girlfriend, but that’s it. (more…)

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