Thursday, July 31, 2008

Play List 7 2008

Each month, since Feb of 2006, I start a playlist in my iTunes of the tunes that catch my ear that month. I started off writing a post to my Mog page with a short review or comments of each track, not only to keep a running diary for myself, but also to hopefully point others toward these tunes. In the last several months I have started to cross post this information on other sites where I keep blogs. (If you are reading this somewhere besides Mog, you can find all the old ones at  I want to apologies for any weird formatting stuff right here and now, I type this in MS word and then post it on these various message places, some of which have…w ell formatting issues….

Anyway for this month here is what caught my ear…


Today's Lesson by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds    

I really like the new Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds album… what else is there to say? Look it rocks, it rolls, it’s got that roots punch, it hints at garage rock and screams like the stooge! All the while it’s like… like… listen I think …. Hum… scratch that, this is crazy, in all honestly these songs just stick in my head, they have the energy and the drive of the Stooges class stuff, and it’s almost like Nick heard that last ‘stooges’ record and figured he’d cut a bunch of tunes to remind those guys how it’s done… in fact fuck it, Ron Asheton lives about six blocks from where I sit, I should burn him a copy of this disc and leave it in his mailbox with a note screaming…. THIS IS HOW IT’S DONE…. Love Nick


Roof with a hole by Meat Puppets

I blame a lot of people for this one… first and foremost is the last woman that broke my heart… for inspiring me to buy a copy of Too High To Die…next is the Noel Murray’s Popless series on the AV Club ( … you are reading that??? Rich? It might only be the most important look at music and culture this year… in fact forget what ever I am writing and get over there and spend the weekend reading the archives….  Any way Murray mentioned the Meat Puppets and this tune, so I figured I needed to check it again… and what do you know… it’s a neo-classic….


More News From Nowhere by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds           

Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! By Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds   

(See above)


Sister Lost Soul by Alejandro Escovedo     

Always A Friend by Alejandro Escovedo

 More of the old punk showing the old timers how they used to do it… Sister Lost Soul and Always a Friend are pure rock and roll… no prefix needed, even though it’s all got bits and parts of what ever else Al figured he would throw in…. I want to shout out that Always A Friend is the best Neo-Classic (and that’s the word of the month, or day, or what ever for me) tune to come down the pike in I don’t know how long…

Copperhead Road by            Steve Earle

When it comes to 80’s rock from the country side of the tracks, music calling back to the 50’s (in this case an update of Thunder Road with Robert Mitchum) hillbilly culture you don’t get much better than this… with it’s perfect lyrics and it’s riff and why in the hell isn’t every other wannabe alt country/Cowpunk band have this in their set? Why didn’t the clash ever cover it… and why hasn’t Neko Case, Nick Cave, Mark Lanegan, or Alejandro Escovedo            for that matter failed to cover this?


Dig That Cra-A-Azy Grave! By Forbidden Dimension

It’s the Forbidden Dimension… really they are one of those bands that should be on every months list… but hey, this one was called back to me when listening to a interview it the great pulp write Christ Faust ( mentioned a novel by Richard S Prather called Dig that Crazy Grave… and I had to listen to the song again…. And I am looking for the Prather book btw…


Mission Stardust by My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult

Speaking of pulp… this tune from the Thrill Kill Kult’s overlooked electro-pulp album also was on my list of noir and glam trash stuff that I have to revisit… Mission Stardust… the album is one that I really hope is rediscovered by the masses soon, and that every other rockfiend with a clue is playing it..


Doctorin' the Empire by The Celebrity Murder Party 

The KLF mashes up the Dr. Who theme with Gary Glitter’s Rock & Roll… that’s all, it’s fun trash, it’s silly and I added it to the list for some reason..


2LIVnDIEinLA by Hazelden      

Really I am not sure why I included this one… other than I wanted to remind myself to listen to it more… so check it out for your self at


Thoughts, comments, spare change.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

what ever you are called these day... I like the sound!

Curse you Rock'n'Roll TV .... for introducing me to Hazelden (now known as End Roulette )... a charming power pop alt rock band from LA with elements of Teenage Fanclub and Concrete Blonde in their sound... you can check out mp3s at their myspace page...

Pure Noir

Queenpin by Megan Abbott

I almost didn’t pick up Megan Abbotts Queenpin. I’d heard an interview with her a couple of years ago and been inspired to pick up a copy of her first book… The Song is You, and wasn’t all that impressed…. However after running across a clip of her reading from Queenpin on Youtube I was inspired to check it out of my library. I am so glad I did, it’s radiates that pure Noir rhythm, and feel. I could almost hear the Jazz, and taste the cocktails as I devoured the book. It’s the story of a small time gal, who is plucked from the trenches of low level casino grind and becomes the right hand of the local organization runner. Soon she is also involved with a louse of a man, one that has her number and gets her hips twitching…. And it’s all a foot from there. I really like the sound and the tone, I love the feel of the book, and I can’t wait to check out what ever Abbott has for us next… hell I might even go back and check out The Song is You again, or her second book Die a Little.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Karma… or something like it.

Bust by Ken Bruen and Jason Starr

Wow, talk about a rousing crime adventure. I am reminded of the great Elmore Leonard after reading this tale of a group of ego driven greedy people all trying to get their hands on what they want. For most of the character it’s money, but for those who have money? It’s sex, it’s power and it’s control. The basic plot is rich guy hires out a hit on his wife to get free of her, and everyone wants to shake him down for money afterward. In the end… we all the debts are paid, or mostly paid, and it was a fun enough journey. I think I will be looking up the sequel Slide in the very near future.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Dear Record Industry....

I would like to buy these albums... you know give you money for them.... just like in the old days... only they haven't been released in the States yet... so you are not collecting my money for these discs, and I fear that I am going to have to skip them, pay twice as much for the import or continue to watch you die.... here it is money in the bank....

Modern Adventure

I spotted this book one day while walking through the library... and it seemed to call out to me for some reason. I was sure that I had seen it somewhere before, so I pulled it off the shelf and took a look. It's the story of Tim Severin who in the late 70's built a leather boat and sailed it from Ireland to North America.... mostly to show that it could be done. Inspired by the Navigatio of Saint Brendan he wanted to try and retrace the journey of the tale...... Now thinking back I am sure that my father owned a copy of this book, and I recall him telling me that St. Brendan had landed in North American not only before Columbus but before Leif Eriksson and his Greenlanders.... The book is an interesting tale of not only Severin's trip, but of the building of the boat, the decoding of the Navigatio and the experience of modern man using obsolete technology to complete a trip thought impossible. Like Thor Heyerdahl, Severin also has shown that even with this world having been mapped that there is still adventure to be found.... for those who dare to dream! Tim Severin is on the web at:

Out of the Past

I finally got around to watching all of the classic noir flick Out of the Past. It was great, filled with great images, juxtaposing the city and the country, the east coast and the west, and of course showing that if  in the words of the The Wire's Det. McNulty... if you play in dirt your gonna get dirty..... Robert Mitchum is great as the guy that want's out, but somehow knows he's not going to get out.... of course there are a couple of great lines, the one that I think I like the best is when Mitchum says "you don't get the gas for being the undertaker"....

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Recast Reservoir Dogs.

Sterling Hayden as Mr. White

Richard Boone as Mr. Orange
Lee Marvin
Lee Marvin as Mr. Blonde

Robert Mitchum Nice Guy Eddie 
Timothy Carey

Timothy Carey as Mr. Pink

Jackie Gleason as Joe Cabot

Charles Bronson as Mr. Brown (he's way over on the left side of this still)

Vincent Price as Mr. Blue

Jack Webb as Young Cop .... you figure out why.....

Orson Wells as K-Billy DJ playing Lost Highway by Hank Williams Sr when the ear chopping scene goes down...

this recast is for the Filmspotting / spout blog contest 

Cop Hater by Ed McBain

This was a solid, police procedural... which may have been the first of the genre... the story is simple enough, a cop killer is on the loose and the Detectives of the 87th Precinct are at a loss to find out who is killing their own. The book also acts as a starting insight to the world of the 87th Precinct and to introduce the cops and the city that would last a full 57 books over 49 years. It's worth reading simply to see where and how this series started.. I read a couple of the books in the series when I was younger, and I am planning on following them, to try and read all of them, see how they track the crime genre though the 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's....

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Screwed up family

If you don't have a truly screwed up family... you can pretty much pass on this one... but as awful and messy, and lame, and stupid... even while talking as if they are smart... it's nice to know that I am not alone in having a family that really isn't a family.... this flick got bad reviews all over the place, with critics talking about the depression, the nastiness and how they just didn't want to be around these people... well I have news for you, some of us have family like this... some of us have family that is worse, and really we don't always want to be around them either, but they are our family.... this is a flick for people that are deeply flawed, that have a history of mistakes, bad choices and who are just raging not only to figure out what is right, but for something anything to be right!!! Now there are moments that don't work, but there are others that are classic Baumbach, and there are moments when I felt like I wanted to see his earlier funnier stuff again.... over all it was worth watching, but unless you are a fan, I would skip it..

Oh and I love the dark and dull look of the film...

Post Motrem

I have returned Robert Bloch's Shooting Star/ Spiderweb to the Library... it just wasn't holding my attention at the moment... sure there were some solid moments, but Shooting Star just wasn't making it... so I am going to put it on my list of books that I will have to come back to...

I have instead started to read... Cop Hater by Ed McBain.... it's the first of the 87th Precinct book... I read a couple of the back in the day, but as I have been in a pulp mood as of late figured that I would try some of the early ones and try to work my way though the series over the next how ever long...

Monday, July 14, 2008

Is it a dream?

Wow... I just finished watching this film... and it was amazing. Now before you run out and rent it, let me just say that this isn't the action filled, sexy, noisy western of the past, it's dream like, fairly calm, amazingly well acted by all involved, and it looks like a washed out painting. There is so much style in this film, so many great scene of people just standing or sitting in nature and thinking, feeling, seeking, and reflecting. It's a quite film about the seeking of fame, and it's price. It's a long film but it never drags, it never bores and I am sure that it's one that is going to hold up to repeat viewings. I only wish that I had taken the time to see it on the big screen.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Lemon Aid

Lemons never lie by Richard Stark

Honestly this was a great read, it was fun, fast and most importantly to me, it was about more than the simple heist caper that it might seem at first.... our hero is a actor who pays the bills by pulling jobs.... and that's one of the things that I dug the most about the story, it's about a guy who is good at pulling a job from a purely professional point of view, who first of all walks away from a job that he understands is way to risky, and will bring down way too much heat... then he has to deal with the fall out of walking. Anyone that liked the film Pulp Fiction should dig this book, and I will be on the look out for more Stark books.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Real as an Animal

It finally arrived... my LP of Real Animal, only it's really 2 LP, and it includes two tracks that are not on the CD.... I haven't listened to the whole thing yet, but it looks great, with it's crisp white cover and gate fold opens to reveal the lyrics... I know that it's gonna get dinged up and handled, but that's what it's for.... more to


Revenge, Family, duty... maybe we are all soldiers in this world, driven to act by not only our hearts and minds, but on the orders of others. 361 is the story of Ray Kelly, who leaves the US Airforce and promptly looses all that's left of his family, of his stability, and just as he's stops being a solider (OK Airman, as he says in the first chapter).... he becomes one, instead of fighting for Uncle Sam, it's his dad, it's his brother and it's those who have taken away all that he had... the book is everything a paperback pulp should be, fast, enjoyable and there is even something extra .... a couple of paragraphs where Ray buys and then rips up a couple of mystery/action paperbacks because they lack any cost to the hero for his war... and Ray already knows you're gonna pay for your actions. A solid entry from the Hard Case Line

Quick update

slowly and surly I am getting this thing rolling and adding more content and links.. more to come... oh and if you haven't noticed I have been reading a lot of the Hard Case Crime books lately... mostly for the darkness, but also to kinda kick myself and the ass to get back to writing my own crime stuff...

Who Fears the Devil?

From 7 Deadly Sinners.... and of course I want this...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

MY first hardcase..

Here is the review that I wrote for this book a couple of weeks back...
This is a solid noir adventure of revenge. The plot moves along quickly, and briskly. I'd put the Dracula factor close to James Ellroy but only slightly less twisted. The heroine of the story is a former Porn actress who is put into play by someone that she doesn't even know, and has to navigate a underworld that she knows, but at the same time that she doesn't know. This book isn't for the faint of heart, if you like the kind of mystery where the cat and a cup of tea solve everything... this isn't for you...

The Flesh Element

Richard S Parther
The Peddler

A twisted and fast paced read.... Tony is a hustler who wills himself into the world of pimping, 50's style, and before long he's climbing the ladder of the outfit.... only there is a darkness in him, a desire, a drive to feed his pocket and gather power. He burns bridges, he uses people, and when he stumbles, he's offered... just for a moment.... an out, offered the love of a young woman, someone who wants him to go straight, to start over... only... well let's just say you play with dirt you are going to get dirty..

Friday, July 4, 2008

Book Review: Miami Purity by Vikki Hendricks

Dark. X rated. Demented. This book chronicles the attempt of a stripper to go straight, only to end up finding that maybe the 'real' world is even more dishonest, that at least when you are selling vice, you know exactly what everyone wants. This book has a lot of sex in it, but none of it was really erotic, and the violence is pretty minimal.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

short book review

Fade to blonde by Phillips, Max
I am feeling pretty mixed about this book... there were some snappy exchanges, and some interesting moments in this book... and I know that it's pulp... in that old pulp style... that style that's good to pass the time, but never really dares move past the conventions. why do I expect the conventions to be played with? cause others have been willing to do so, and even other books by Hard Case Crime have dared.... ok, over all this was a solid time passer... but it's not something that I am going to feel the need to revisit... and like this review, it had a bit of a hurried and obvious ending.