Category Archives: Punk

“If you had your way, I’d have a lobotomy”

The Exploding Hearts – “Sleeping Aides & Razorblades” from Guitar Romantic [2003]

Next up in the “Burned Out, Didn’t Fade Away” series is Portland power-pop punk band, the Exploding Hearts. After releasing a 28-minute debut album that sounded like a lost classic from London, circa 1977, the Hearts quickly gained notoriety and garnered notices from taste-making rags like Maximum Rocknroll and Pitchfork. On their way home from a show — where pop-punk powerhouse Lookout! Records reportedly scouted the band — the band’s van flipped over and three of the members were killed. Learn more here.

Only an odds-n-sods collection survives — and so the band’s reputation rests on Guitar Romantic, a few stray singles, and the thought of what might have been. And that’s one of the hallmarks of “Better To Burn Out” artists: the weird tragedy of never being able to hear the songs that might have been written. But of course, as Keats shows us in “Ode to a Grecian Urn,” the most beautiful thing is what we cannot grasp, that forever eludes us. Therein lies part of the charm of the Burned-Out.

What would you like to buy? Sleeping aids? Razorblades?

Posted by Glenn



Filed under 2000s, Pop, Punk, Rock

“I can play along to every record/front and back every song”


Against Me! – “Rice and Bread” from As The Eternal Cowboy (2003)

My friend Becky asked me to make a guest post on her excellent vegetarian cooking blog, Meals; for Moderns. I wrote a bit about some Victory Loaves baked Monday in honor of the impending Obama win. Check out my bread (and Becky’s delicious blog, which will make you hungry) while listening to this Against Me! rocker.

Baby, I’m An Anarcho-Syndicalist

Posted by Glenn


Filed under 2000s, Punk, Rock

“I started growing Bob Dylan’s beard.”

Check that beard.

Syd Barrett – “Bob Dylan Blues” from The Best of Syd Barrett: Won’t You Miss Me? (2001, org. recorded 1970s)
Minutemen – “Bob Dylan Wrote Propaganda Songs” from What Makes A Man Start Fires? (1983)
Wilco – “Bob Dylan’s 49th Beard” from More Like The Moon (2003)
Bob Dylan – “Bob Dylan’s Dream” from The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (1962)
Bob Dylan – “Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream” from Bringing It All Back Home (1965)

Over the past couple days, I’ve been re-watching the totally flippin’ awesome Bob Dylan documentary, No Direction Home, and got to thinking about songs with ol’ Zimmerman’s stage name in the title. Here is a Syd Barrett song of questionable quality (sorry, Crazy Diamond); a Minutemen barn-burner, stone-cold classic; and a wispy Wilco folk-er, off the great More Like The Moon EP, downloadable here.

As a bonus, I offer two Bob-Dylan-In-The-Title tunes by Bob himself (just try not to laugh along with 115th). Enjoy. And watch the movie if for some reason you haven’t already.

More Bob Dylan on SWR
Buy Syd

Buy the Minutemen

Buy the Wilc-sters

Buy Bob

Posted by Glenn


Filed under 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 2000s, Acoustic, Folk, Punk, Rock, Singer-Songwriter

Heave away!

The Pogues – “South Australia” bonus track from If I Should Fall From Grace With God (1987) reissue

Here’s another, non-a cappella version of the sea shanty “South Australia.”

More Pogues at SWR

Buy it here

Posted by Glenn

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Filed under 1980s, Acoustic, Folk, Punk, Traditional

2 great songs, 1 great riff

Television – “Marquee Moon” from Marquee Moon (1977)
Interpol – “Obstacle 1” from Turn On The Bright Lights (2002)

Never underestimate the power of skinny white guys playing dee-dee, dee-dee, dee-dee, dee-dee. We offer two nervous New York rockers, masterpieces of the slow burn.

Damn that Television
If the rat from Ninja Turtles joined the band, they’d have to call themselves Splinterpol

Posted by Glenn


Filed under 1970s, 2000s, Punk, Rock

“I’d be a mineral deposit”

Mission of Burma – “(That’s When I Reach For My) Revolver” from Signals, Calls, & Marches (1981)
Mission of Burma – “Mica” from Vs. (1982)

Of a piece with Joy Division and the Constantines (our previous two posts), Boston’s recently reunited Mission of Burma played (and play) a stoic, no-nonsense, anthemic version of punk rock anthems. This is the type of thing I can’t listen to over and over, but it sounds lifesaving every once in a while.

You mean Mynamar?

Posted by Glenn

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Filed under 1980s, Punk, Rock

“From the reservoirs/of our idiot tempers”

The Constantines – “Soon Enough” from Tournament of Hearts (2005)

Dang, I just remembered that these guys put out a new record a while back, and I’ve yet to pick it up. Their ’03 and ’05 releases, Shine A Light and Tournament of Hearts, were somewhat neglected by the critical establishment and by most of the people I know, and it seems that the new one, Kensington Heights, may suffer the same unfortunate fate. Too bad; the Constantines are a great Fugazi-esque rock band, albeit a Fugazi that sometimes write pop melodies. Speaking of: is it just me, or is this one of the most moving songs ever written by anybody?

Here’s a few live Cons videos. They’re damn good live.

Buy it here

Posted by Glenn


Filed under 2000s, Punk, Rock