Endless Loop: Five Seconds

twinshadowHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop. “Five Seconds” by Twin Shadow I’m tired. There seems to be an almost nightly moment of dread when I hear some shifting around on the baby monitor, maybe a sigh or a whine, a meek little cry for Mama or Dada, or a loud thump as a toddler escapes the confines of his crib, a growing wail as he realizes he can’t get his door open.  And then my wife and I attempt to wait each other out, to see who will get up and out of the comfort of our sheets and blankets to soothe the little one [more]

Drinking, Fighting, F*&king, and Crying

Roadhouse Bar Brawl edit1999. Schlitz Family Robinson had died at least a year before, and Mr. Brown and I were trying to make it work with new people. I did a brief stint in Grez and Sonny’s follow-up project, The Harlem Circus (later The Harlem Circuit), but I wasn’t feeling it. I played one show with those guys and went back to recording odd 4-track music with Brown. Then an old friend, Jason Wayne Sneed, called me up out of the blue. He’d started a project with Mike Pearson of the Blue Meanies and a drummer named Dave. Pearson had left, and they needed a guitar player and a singer. Brown. Baker. Sneed. Dave. Universal Product was born. UP went by quick, but we played quite a few shows and packed quite a punch. Dave eventually left to tour the world with [more]

Endless Loop: Elenore

theturtlesHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop. “Elenore” by The Turtles Coincidentally enough, a couple of days after I decided to write about “Elenore” for this week’s column, my brother posted to Facebook that “The Turtles are criminally underrated.”  He’s not wrong. Originally starting as a surf rock band in California in the mid ‘60s before moving on to folk, rock, and psych pop, The Turtles were fronted by dual vocalists Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan.  The group initially caught the public’s attention with a cover of Bob Dylan’s “It Ain’t Me Babe,” and then scored a huge hit in 1967 with their signature pop song [more]

The Joup Friday Album: The Paper Chase – God Bless Your Black Heart

paperchase“Good things die all the time.” Dark and ugly times call for dark and ugly music. And I’m trying to remember maybe where we were at collectively in 2004 when John Congleton and The Paper Chase released their third full length album God Bless Your Black Heart.  What was the backdrop?  What was in the ether?  Or for that matter, what was in the hearts and minds of the band members who created it at that moment?  On the surface, the record is a scorching, screeching, often disharmonic concept album that seems to be about the end of a relationship, filled with all of the bitterness and resentment that that would entail, each discordant note echoing the declarations of pain and hate. Taking some inspiration from Roger Waters at his most bitter (specifically Pink Floyd’s The Final Cut and Waters’ solo album The Pros [more]

Drinking, Fighting, F*&king, and Crying

Drumcondra Pub Example“After the shower I got dressed up nice to go out; Nichola and I were supposed to go to The Kitchen (U2’s club), to meet up with Joe and Tony. Nichola was still doing her make-up when I heard a knock at the door. This is where shit got interesting. Something about the knock put me on high alert. There was something malevolent about it. Maybe I’m imaging that now, I don’t know, but there was a feeling that came with that knock. And when Mrs. Ryan answered the door and I heard a voice say, ‘I’m looking for my sister, she’s staying here with two Americans,.’ I froze.” This is an except of a journal I wrote several days after the dust had settled from my first night in Ireland. The entry is dated Saturday, January 26th, 2002. By this [more]

Endless Loop: What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?

remHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop. “What’s The Frequency, Kenneth?” by R.E.M. Everyday this waking nightmare continues anew. Everyday this horror show gets worse and worse. Everyday my fear of what this country and this world may have in store for my sons grows and grows. Everyday is an exercise in managing impending panic attacks. Every. God. Damn. Day. And so I try to do what little I can, donating what money I can spare to charitable or righteous causes here or there, amplifying the sounds of protest, and giving the proverbial finger to the awful powers that be.  And in the little breaks between panic and alarm, I [more]

The Joup Friday Album: The Atlas Moth – Coma Noir

The Atlas Moth - Coma Noir Album CoverI’m new to The Atlas Moth, so as my appreciation for their caustically unique brand of post/core/metal whatever is a fresh one. That’s why I wanted to take the open opportunity to post it here for The Joup Friday Album – to try and turn some others onto what I’m finding is a deeply rewarding album. My own appreciation of this band and their music began about two weeks ago when a friend recommended their 2011 album An Ache for the Distance. This is the kind of metal band who some will say traffic in pretension, but to that I say bullshit. Like so many other forward-thinking groups not content to be boxed in by genre parameters, The Atlas Moth are crafting some deeply interesting, intellectual and wickedly compelling aggressive music; if that’s pretentious, well, [more]

Drinking, Fighting, F*&king, and Crying

tombstoneThe day they put my friend Aaron in the ground was the day that I learned the power of Amazing Grace when played by Bagpipes. 2000. I don’t remember the month, or the day. I was in a fugue. I had almost hung out with Aaron the night he died, had called him that Friday to invite him to go see a new band I’d just picked up the debut album by, a group called High on Fire I’d heard compared to Ozzy-era Sabbath. I was excited. They were playing Chicago’s legendary Double Door. Aaron seemed excited too. He almost went. But he didn’t. The next day I got the call that he was dead. Previously, Amazing Grace hadn’t ever really moved a needle with me. A trite song I 100% took for granted due to all the times I’d heard it at parades [more]

Endless Loop: Drawer

summercampHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop. “Drawer” by Summercamp In the summer of 1997 after I graduated from high school, I delivered pizzas for Pizza Hut.  It wasn’t agreat job, but it really wasn’t that bad of one either, as it gave me plenty of time to drive around town (the cultural mecca that is Midland, Texas) and listen to music.  I’d check into the back, fold some pizza boxes for a few minutes, gather a handful of deliveries, and then tear off into the evening with the stereo blaring.  And I’d deliver pizzas across the sprawl of the dusty old berg, to a [more]


Living Nudes – My World Exploded

Joup’s Very own Thomas H. Williams
new album is out!