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The 80s List: Part 6

Posted by Amoebite, August 24, 2011 07:41am | Post a Comment
Kate BushOne day at Amoeba Hollywood I proclaimed that Aztec Camera's 1983 release High Land, Hard Rain was one of the best records of the '80s. This single statement eventually led to over 200 Amoebites ranking their top 10 favorite albums from the ‘80s.

From the beginning we realized that it was impossible for most of us to condense our favorites from all genres into a tiny top ten list. So, we limited our lists to Rock/Pop and its sub-genres like punk, metal, goth, and new wave. Even so, it was a difficult selection process because not only are there hundreds of amazing records to consider, there is also the added dynamic of time.

The '80s were a long time ago and the music has had many years to gestate. We have a deep sense of nostalgia and sentiment with these albums as our fondest memories are associated with them. These are albums we LOVE.

- Henry Polk

P.S. We'll be posting new additions to the '80s list project from Amoeba staff members on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. See all entries in our '80s list series.

P.P.S. The '80s List Book is available for sale at Amoeba Hollywood.


Melody Hirose
Klaus NomiKlaus Nomi (1981)
Adam AntFriend Or Foe (1982)
GrauzoneGrauzone (1981)
Depeche ModeBlack Celebration (1986)
The ClashCombat Rock (1982)
Judy NylonPal Judy (1982)
Psychic TVPagan Day (1984)
Tones On TailPop (1984)
Fad GadgetFireside Favourites (1980)
ESG – Come Away With ESG (1983)

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The '80s List: Part 5

Posted by Amoebite, August 22, 2011 03:54pm | Post a Comment
Psychic TvOne day at Amoeba Hollywood I proclaimed that Aztec Camera's 1983 release High Land, Hard Rain was one of the best records of the '80s. This single statement eventually led to over 200 Amoebites ranking their top 10 favorite albums from the ‘80s.

From the beginning we realized that it was impossible for most of us to condense our favorites from all genres into a tiny top ten list. So, we limited our lists to Rock/Pop and its sub-genres like punk, metal, goth, and new wave. Even so, it was a difficult selection process because not only are there hundreds of amazing records to consider, there is also the added dynamic of time.

The '80s were a long time ago and the music has had many years to gestate. We have a deep sense of nostalgia and sentiment with these albums as our fondest memories are associated with them. These are albums we LOVE.

- Henry Polk

P.S. We'll be posting new additions to the '80s list project from Amoeba staff members on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. See all entries in our '80s list series.

P.P.S. The '80s List Book is available for sale at Amoeba Hollywood.


Aaron Aldorisio
Spacemen 3The Perfect Prescription (1987)
Sonic YouthSister (1987)
The Go-BetweensLiberty Belle & The Black Diamond Express (1986)
Felt – Forever Breathes The Lonely Word (1986)
The FrogsIt’s Only Right & Natural (1989)
The Stone RosesThe Stone Roses (1989)
The FallHex Induction Hour (1982)
Galaxie 500On Fire (1989)
Psychic TVDreams Less Sweet (1983)
The BatsDaddy’s Highway (1987)

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MISSION DISTRICT CELEBRATED IN BEN STOKES' ANIMATED AZEEM VID

Posted by Billyjam, March 4, 2009 01:21pm | Post a Comment

The brilliant, Ben Stokes-directed video above for Azeem's Air Cartoons' album track "Latin Revenge" (on Oaklyn Records with music production by DJ Zeph) takes place in the Mission District of San air cartoons azeemFrancisco. Inspired in part by Terry Gilliam's work and also by Azeem's music, the animated piece also puts a spin on the role of how police are perceived in society. In the video Azeem gains popularity as he peruses the streets of the Mission (eventually becoming a King Kong-like menace) as meanwhile a host of local neighborhood characters take notice. The police in the video are described by the maker as "enablers and cheerleaders."

I called up Azeem the other day to ask him what he thought about the new video. "It made me a fan and it's my video," he laughed, adding that, "All I can say about that video is that I can really almost take no credit for it. I just made the song. Like you and anyone else, I am fan of the video and I am amazed at the level of artistry that it incorporates." The video's animation was done by Ben Stokes (the video's producer/director) with additional animation by Patrick Siemer, who drew from the thousands of still photographs they shot, then cut up, mixed and matched, and then painstakenly animated using After effects.

Ben Stokes, also a part of Tino Corps, D.H.S.,, &  Meat Beat Manifesto, has been professionally making music videos for about 20 years. The Mission District, San Francisco-based Stokes started out doing videos back in 1990 in his native Chicago where he began directing & producing a lot of the pioneering hometown WaxTrax industrial music artists' videos such as Ministry and the Revolting Cocks.

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MY LIFE WITH THE THRILL KILL KULT

Posted by Billyjam, June 1, 2008 03:02pm | Post a Comment

The music of My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult, who are back touring and scheduled to play the DNA Lounge in San Francisco tonight, stands the test of time two decades later -- as proven by the videos to three of their songs below.  While labeled "industrial" music, even helping push the genre to popularity and being one of the most popular acts on Wax Trax! (the label known for industrial music, with such other acts of the genre as KMFDM, Ministry, and Front 242), My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult actually transcended the genre as they continually evolved.

As well as being industrial music, the duo (Buzz and Groovie -- pictured left back in the day & below with their ensemble in more recent years) were equally heavy metal, electronic, goth, dance, and cut n paste in musical styles. Meanwhile their imagery was consistently deeply rooted in the occult and Satanism -- something that led to them causing controversy and being targets of various religious and parental watch dog groups. Unpopular with these groups were the songs and videos for "This Is What The Devil Does" and "Kooler Than Jesus" -- both below.  Also below is one of two video versions of their song "Sex On Wheelz" (off their 1991 album Sexplosion!). This version is directed by Ralph Bakshi and features parts from his semi-animated movie Cool World, which featured the group's music.

The current tour by the group, which stopped last night in Hollywood (Bar Sinister) and will be in San Diego (Beauty Bar) on Tuesday, is being billed as a 20th Anniversary Tour and "reminiscent of their 1989 Inferno Xpress Tour," so expect to hear all the old classics including the ones below and such others as "The Devil Does Drugs" and "The Days of Swine & Roses." My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult, who played the Folsom Street Fair two years ago, play the DNA Lounge, 375 11th Street in San Francisco tonight (June 1st).  9PM doors. Tix $13. More info.
 


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Finally, A Real How-To Book for Bands: Tour Smart

Posted by Billyjam, August 25, 2007 10:31am | Post a Comment
tour smart and break the band
In his recommended new book Tour Smart and Break the Band, about the real deal of touring as a band or artist, longtime drummer Martin Atkins (PiL, Killing Joke, Ministry, Pigface, etc.) tells it like it is to be on the road in a rock band, or in any band for that matter.  These days the busy author runs a record label, invents new types of drums, books bands, and teaches a univeristy course in Chicago at Columbia College about the business of the arts! The 592-page book (which is in stores Sept. 1st but available online now) exhaustively explores every aspect of touring. The highly informative and entertaining how-to book is written and edited by Atkins, who invited about a hundred music biz experts (from bus drivers to bass players) to voice their tales and experiences of life on the road for touring artists. Topics include making contracts, sketching itineries, pros and cons of drug use on the road, the importance of merchandise, sound checks, and dealing with everything from club sound checks to handling radio interviews and driving a tour bus 330 miles in unfamiliar conditions at 4AM after just leaving a gig. Atkins' guest contributors include Henry Rollins, Steve Albini, and Kevin Lyman of the Vans Warped Tour. Lee Frasers of Sheep on Drugs describes the difficulty of being on stage tripping on acid and playing his guitar, which felt to him like it was made of sponge rubber, and trying to somehow keep in the (onstage) moment.

I recently caught up with author Martin Atkins via email, to ask him about the book and also the exhibit  entitled The Religion of Marketing that he just wound up in New York City at Fuse Gallery on 2nd Avenue. It featured items that are included in the illustration-heavy Tour Smart.
martin atkins
AMOEBLOG: What exactly was at your recent exhibit in New York that tied in with the new book?

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