Blank Dogs – 2007 Releases

1. “First Two Weeks” 12″ EP-Freedom School Records-Sold Out. Repress soon.

First Two Weeks 12″

2. 7″-Hozac Records-1st Press Sold Out, 2nd Press still available (try Tic Tac Totally Mailorder)

blankdogs2.jpg

3. 7″-Sweet Rot Records-1st Press Sold Out, 2nd Press soon available. (Try Black Mountain Distro)

Black Dogs Sweet Rot Single

4. “Diana (The Herald)” 12″ EP-Sacred Bones Records-Sold Out. Repress soon (Try Tic Tac Totally Mailorder)

Blank Dogs Diana the Herald

5. 7″ EP-Florida’s Dying Records-Sold Out (Try Bistro-Distro)

Blank Dogs Florida is Dying.

So there is this guy working under the name of Blank Dogs that was uber prolific last year, and I had managed to avoid hearing anything from him, or reading any thing about him, until he started popping up on all of these year end best-of lists. And by “all these” I am referring to one or two, though one top ten of 2007 included four of these releases. So by the time I catch the scent – it is too late, and all of these are sold out. This causes great concern for me (I’m slipping!), but I managed to track down all of these via various distro’s (linked where still available). It just takes a long time.

What someone who knows how to code or whatnot needs to do is set up some kind of Amazon-style website of “If you liked this, try this!”, but with links to all of these various boutique labels. Kind of like a dumping ground of links to various small scale labels (as opposed to another Insound or something). Or not. I’ve just spent so much time searching google for short run seven inches and the like, and keep thinking that there has to be a better way.

For example, this came to my attention today – HoZac records just released a new Blank Dogs 7″ (ltd to 200 green), which you can get that right from their MySpace page. Crazy, I am eager to hear this one (though it says US only, so maybe I am going to have to ask someone in the US to order it for me).

If you like Blank Dogs, keep your eyes peeled in 2008 as they are putting out 12 – yes 12 (!!) releases this year…

1. 7″ EP-Daggerman Records-Coming Soon

2. “Mirror Lights” Cassette-Coming Soon

3. Blank Box (all 2007 Releases+inserts+1&2 from 2008, SOLD OUT, Coming Soon)*

4. “On Two Sides” LP-Troubleman Records (February?), cassette version on Fuck it Tapes-Coming Soon

5. Ltd. 7″ on Troubleman

6. 7″ on 4:2:2 Records (Denmark)

7. Untitled LP/CD-In The Red Records

8. Singles Anthology Cassette on Heavy Tapes-Coming Soon

9. Singles Anthology CD on Sacred Bones-March(?)

10. 7″ on Woodsist

11. Cassette on Bum Tapes

12. 7″ on Slowboy (Germany)

Marvelous Darlings – I Don’t Wanna Go to the Party

a: I Don’t Wanna Go to the Party
b: Careerist
Stream on CBC Radio 3
Purchase direct from Deranged

Part of me really loves this – really tight, glam-rock inspired rock, hooks falling all over themselves. Both songs are winners here, but the title track clearly stands tall. Another part of me is pushing back – at one point I thought to myself “this kind of sounds like Poison”- and now I can’t get past that.  Can we live with Poison mets The Ramones? I don’t know if we can.

Too Pure Singles Club

As someone dedicated to collecting 7″ singles, you can get no better bang for your buck than by joining a singles club. Yet, one of the things I like about this hobby is that it is generally really cheap – four bucks here, six there. So when you have these clubs come up, it kind of takes its toll on the ‘ol pocketbook. The Too Pure series which I only found out about today via Pitchfork will set you back around $60… yikes. Still recovering from Christmas and the Bored Fortress subscription I got this month, so I’ll sit this one out.

Here’s P-Forks rundown:

The January face of the Too Pure Singles Club is chamber popper Anni Rossi, while February brings a split offering between French-born Frànçois (a sometime member of Camera Obscura’s live band) and Ray Rumours, aka Electrelane’s Ros Murray. (If the Rossi and Rumours singles sound familiar, they were previously mentioned here.) Finally, for now at least, March heralds the arrival of an entry from Austin’s the Octopus Project, the crew’s first release outside of North America.

As usual, these singles contain two exclusive, previously unreleased tracks and are limited to an international run of 500 copies. Apart from a few select record stores, the only way to get your hands on one of them is through an annual subscription obtained here.

The Road

So, everyone in 2007 (well, not everyone, but Oprah for sure) was going on about this book called “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy. It’s this book about this man and his son (eight years old-ish?) trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world.

So, I read said book (can’t remember exactly when, maybe in August?), reading in two sittings, and it still hasn’t left me. I think about this book all the time. There are things in my head now that The Road placed there, and they won’t leave me. I dream about this book all the time (such as last night, and one other night this week), and these dreams are terrible dreams. I am haunted by The Road.

I am not going to give anything else away. I didn’t know much going into this book, and I was glad that I didn’t know. There are a few sections that I had to read a dozen times just to piece together what was happening, to fill in as much of the puzzle in my head as possible. You should read The Road to see for yourself.

I am three books deep into my book a week project for 2008. Reading a book called “The World Without Us” which is about what would happen to the world if humans dissapeared. I am scheduled for my candidacy for May, so I need to start reading for that asap.

The Mantles – Burder +3 7″

a1:Burden
a2:Walk with Me
b1:The Garden
b2:Trouble In the Streets
Stream at MySpace
Purchase from Dulc-I-Tone Records

I’ve been searching for more bands like The Ostrich (which I have been going off about for far too long)- quirky, psychedelic drone-pop… and I think I have been satisfied with this Mantles single. I like this music to have a sinister quality that is just so often lacking, otherwise it is just another generic garage band.

The Mantles are very good at what they do. This single sounds like it existed thirty or fourty years ago. They capture the essence of another time in a way that few other bands are able to pull off. At the same time, it sounds like it is coming out an alternate future where the world where Smashmouth’s “Walking on the Sun” became such a phenomenon that everybody in the world only listens to that kind of music (also, in said alternate reality, Smashmouth is killed in a tragic Van accident and can never unleash “All Star” on the world).  Long about way of saying that I am stoked on this single, and recommend that you check it out.

Limited to 300 copies that come in beautiful silk-screened covers.

Frail – Various 7″

Buy here
Listen here

Back in the mid-90’s, I used to be a practicing hardcore kid, collecting a lot of shitty hardcore 7″ records. I had hundreds of them, and over the years as my “taste matured” (aka, I got bored of them), I ended up giving most of them away to friends or whatnot (“hey, want a stack of shitty grindcore 7-inches?”)?

There were only two bands from that era that I have really held onto, and listen on a somewhat frequent basis – Disembodied and Frail. Frail are this unique band that still manages to warm my heard. Sure, they hit all of the major hardcore touchstones that have since become cliche, but they did it with such style and passion that they manage to stand out from the pack. I can listen to this band without ever getting sick of it.

I was trolling eBay this afternoon, and came across this lot. I have all of these already, but I figured someone out there might be interested, especially because they are probably fairly obscure (their only CD release, to my knowledge, was an anthology that collected all of their vinyl singles). Check it out – for a couple of bucks, you really can’t lose.

Constantines – Hard Feelings / Easy Money 7″

a: Hard Feelings
b: Easy Money
Stream on Myspace
Purchase from Arts and Crafts

Growing up in the Canadian prairies, I feel like I have been surrounded by this kind of music my entire life. Gruff, no-bullshit, straight up “rawk.” Yet, the bands that Prairie boys and girls dig the most are generally very, erm… Canadian. For example, The Tragically Hip – gruff, no-bullshit, but with tonnes of heart and some decent lyrics.

For whatever reason, this Constantines record is making me feel very patriotic, very Canadian. Don’t ask me why. Maybe it is the weather here today (very Canadian), or perhaps it is something else all together. Either way, this is kicking my ass. This single is finding the Constantines in a bad mood (giant chip and all that), with some amazing, face-melting soloing. I actually like the B-side better on this one, “Easy Money” (I’ve made some), so many great lyrics…

Anyway, chalk this one up for the win.