Sunday, March 29, 2009

Ornette Coleman-The Shape of Jazz to Come

People had differing opinions on Ornette Coleman. Miles Davis said that Coleman was “all screwed up inside” during some interview. Davis later recanted what he said but the statement never went away. Roy Eldridge had this to say: "I'd listened to him all kinds of ways. I listened to him high and I listened to him cold sober. I even played with him. I think he's jiving baby." You never really knew what you were going to get when it came to his music. “The Shape of Jazz to Come” came out in 1959 and was one of the first avant-garde jazz records ever. People were shocked and blown away with the fact that the record had very little chord structure and seemed to be all over the place musically. He’ll start off with a main theme followed by wild solo’s that last a few minutes then he’ll dive back into the main theme and start over again. Sometimes every band member will be soloing simultaneously causing a mess of noise that somehow comes out perfect. This record was pretty much responsible for starting a whole new type of jazz (avant-garde, free jazz) and was groundbreaking for jazz in general. I posted a song from the record and a link to his official site where you can see his discography and some videos.

Band Members for “The Shape of Jazz to Come”:

Ornette Coleman – Alto Sax
Don Cherry – Cornet
Charlie Haden – Bass
Billy Higgins – Drums

Coleman is 79 and still playing live and recording in the studio. Check out his newest record Sound Grammar where he plays alto sax, trumpet and violin and tears them all up. It was recorded live in Germany and won the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for music.

Ornette Coleman-Eventually

Ornette Coleman Official Site

Friday, March 27, 2009


Steve Albini is the fucking man. I am having a really hard time thinking of a place to start with this. Since this is a Shellac post I won't go too far into his earlier band Big Black but they basically started industrial music but played it a lot cooler than anybody else has since. In 1992 Albini started Shellac with Todd Trainer on drums and Bob Weston on bass. Out of all of Albini's personal music endeavors I think that Shellac has always been the band that I got the most excited about. I've always really admired Albini for being publicly outspoken about his recording techniques which range from denouncing the "producer" title to not accepting royalties from his recordings. I think you would have to search far and wide for a record collection that doesn't contain the mark of Steve Albini somewhere in it, even if the owner of the record isn't aware of it.I became a fan of his almost subconsciously. By the time I found out who he was I already had a bunch of records from bands he had worked with like Nirvana, Jawbreaker and the Pixies . I think he has had such a prolific career because people can easily relate to him.  He always seems to keep things simple and focus more on what the band already has, bringing that out rather than trying to make them what they aren't using studio techniques.  I am going to leave a few different Shellac songs from different albums that I really enjoy. Their sound has taken on changes throughout their career but I think its safe to say if you like what you hear than you will probably be into everything else they have released.

Shellac-Song of the Minerals

Shellac-Squirrel Song

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Sore Eros-Second Chants

Aside from the cover artwork, I am really surprised that I haven't seen more about this band. Sore Eros is one guy from Connecticut who used to play in Ariel Pink's backing band. It's easy to hear that he would fit in well with Ariel Pink's band but I think this record stands up to anything Ariel Pink has released. At first listen "Second Chants" seems too be hazy and meandering but after a few listens you realize that each song has a really strong melody behind the wandering. Each time I listen to this record I find a new song that seems to really stand out. It also works great as a cohesive album, each song fits perfectly into the next creating a layered hypnotic feeling that is present throughout the whole album. With certain artists this could be annoying or monotonous but I think Sore Eros succeeds in keeping you interested and engaged. I read that Shdwply Records only made about 500 of these but on their myspace page they say it will be repressed soon on 180 gram vinyl which will make it sound even better. I will leave the address for Shdwply records below as well as two tracks from the record.

Sore Eros-Lips Like Wine

Sore Eros-In My Heart

Shdwply Records

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Obits-I Blame You

I feel like its only right that I get something from the John Reiss/Rick Froberg camp on this blog. Although Drive like Jehu broke up way before my time I always loved their records and tried to stay up to date with as many of their post Jehu projects as I could. I even saw the Hot Snakes play a few times when they were touring in support of their last record "Audit In Progress". Obits is the new project from ex-Hot Snakes and Jehu singer/guitarist Rick Froberg. I heard that after seeing a recording of their first show Sub-Pop approached them with a several record deal. Pretty impressive for a new band with only a handful of shows under their belt. The attitude behind the band seems to be just play and make records and let everything else kind of fall in to place. From the looks of it their plan has been working out so far. Make sure you pick up their Sub-Pop debut "I Blame You" on March 24. If you pre-order it from the Sub-Pop site you get a bunch of far out stuff for free including a "magical-seeming Obits Lenticular card" designed by the band themselves as well as a link to a special steaming website of "I Blame You" which will be available up until the release date.

Obits-Talking to the Dog

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Mayfair Set- Self Titled 7"

This is the new self titled 7" record from a new but familiar band called the Mayfair Set. As is the case with the Mayfair set sometimes hype actually pays off. The band is made up of one part blank dogs and one part dum dum girls. I think that even though both bands play a similar style of music they bring totally different things to table so the mixture seems just right. If you like either of these bands than this 7" will be a welcome addition to your record collection. Two fuzzed out gloomy jams to get you through the last stretch of winter. You can buy it straight from the Captured Tracks myspace which I will link below.

Captured Tracks

The Mayfair Set-Already Warm

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Cam'ron-I hate my job

Cam'ron is back! I just saw this video for the first time and its pretty on point. I am excited to hear his next full length "Crime Pays" which is supposed to be released on May fifth. I always thought Cam'ron was a relatively down to earth dude despite his outspoken appearances on Bill O'reilly and CBS news. You gotta love the low budget video and it's good to see him doing fine without the rest of the Diplomats. Make sure you watch the video up until the point where he interviews for the job. Listening to Cam tell the guy in the suit that his mom would recommend him because he does everything around the house is classic!

Charm City Suicides- Self Titled

I don't really know much about this band. What I do know is that their self titled record is filled with awesome blood on the wall/fyp style sloppy garage punk. Sometimes they almost remind me of a less controlled ink and dagger or early icarus line. I went to the youth attack website to try and get a little more information on this band and all I found is that this record was originally put out on a label called Vermin Scum and that they broke up before it was released. The website also mentions that it was recorded on a boom-box.

Thorns Of Life

  I know that I am not alone when I say that I could use some more Blake Schwarzenbach in my life these days.  For those who aren't familiar Jawbreaker was one of the best punk bands of the nineties and Blake Schwarzenbach was their singer.  I recommend picking up a few of their albums such as 24 revenge therapy, unfun or dear you.  After jawbreaker called it quits Blake went on to form another band called Jets To Brazil.  Now that the Jets have been in the ground for a few years we have Thorns of Life.   In a recent interview I read Blake made a comment about not being sure if his new band sounds more like Jets or Jawbreaker.  From these videos the band definitely sounds more jawbreaker to me, which I don't mind.  This might have something to do with Aaron Cometbus playing drums or maybe its just Blake returning to what he knows best.  Either way, I cant wait and I feel a little better about no new Cometbus issues for a while.  

The Swirlies-Blonder Tongue Audio Baton

I thought it would be a lot harder to choose selections for this site than it is. I guess I expected it to be a much more painstaking process than it is turning out to be, which is a good thing. Anyways my second post is from one of the great forgotten "shoegaze" bands of the nineties. As we have seen from the recent my bloody valentine reunion people are still just as excited about this type of music as they were in the nineties. The reason I chose to write about the Swirlies is because they don't seem to be brought up as much as some of their british comtemporaries at the time and its never really been clear to me why. Although the Swirlies were from Boston and I guess a lot of the focus at the time was on the british shoegaze bands like MBV, Ride, Chapterhouse and Lush. Don't get me wrong I love all of these bands as much as the next person but when I first heard the Swirlies it sounded perfect to me, too perfect to not be compared to the bands mentioned above. Another thing that I like about the swirlies is that their songs rarely rely on studio effects or pedals. Their songs are usually just extremely well written and well performed, something that wasn't always true for a lot of their more popular contemporaries. The song I am going to post is called "Jeremy Parker" from their record Blonder Tongue Audio Baton. I think it is a pretty good introduction to this unfairly ignored band. If you enjoy the track check out the Blonder Tongue Audio Baton record which is still available on Taang.

The Swirlies-Jeremy Parker

The Melvins-Lysol

There is really not a whole lot to say about this band that hasn't been said already. It seems to be the one band along with Black Sabbath that any person remotely into hard music agree on. Its probably due to the fact that they are so fucking good. "Lysol" is not one of the most popular records by the Melvins but it was the first one that I picked up. Apparently when it was released there was quite a bit of controversy about the title which was a registered trademark. Shortly after Lysol was released the Melvins record lable at the time changed the title of the record to "The Melvins". So chances are when you hear this track and run out to your local record store to buy this record you will find the self titled version. Everything else about the record is just as brutal as the original including the painting of the indian on the cover that was bitten from a beach boys live record. Below is a link to my favorite track on the record, Roman Bird Dog. So if you are into any of the sludgy metallic drone bands that are popular today check out this record because in my opinion the Melvins did it way before it was cool and they did it way better.

Melvins-Roman Bird Dog


Welcome to Pacific Radio Fire. This blog is maintained by a few friends who have been collecting records together and alone for years. I think I can speak for all of us when I say we would like to keep the blog music heavy and light on bullshit so if you happen to be into the music we post please subscribe or check in with us whenever. Hopefully we will be updating it enough to keep everyone (including ourselves) interested and wanting more like so many publications do for us. I think we would eventually like to both post ten records each that in our opinion are crucial records in anyones collection but I wanted to get things running while we are getting weird over these introduction lists. So hopefully we will have those lists soon so you can get a feel for what type of posts you can expect from this blog but until then I will be experimenting to figure out exactly how we want to do this.