Tuesday, March 20

Close Lobsters - Rarities & Live BLOWOUT

Rarities 1984-1990
CLOSE LOBSTERS: then (above) & live in 2012 (below)

soundboard recordings
(sound quality: VG to VG+)

01 From This Day On (demo c. 1984)
02 Don't Worry (early version 1985)
03 I Grow So Young
     (aka Van Morrisons Trousers) 
04 Deep House
05 Head Above Water
     (live CBGB, NYC 1989)
06 Chicago (live in USA 1989 or '90)
07 Settle Down
     (live King Tuts, Glasgow 1990)
08 Nitwit (live King Tuts, 
     Glasgow 1990)
09 Steel Love (non-LP single 1989)
10 Float On (non-LP compilation 
     track 1990)

SPECIAL THANKS to Close Lobsters for sharing these rare tracks. 

Rarities 2009-2018
(instrumental experiments & remixes)

soundboard recordings (sound quality: VG++)

01 Cosmic War (Melancholy Soul Mix)
02 Cosmic War (Anti-Orestes Mix)
03 Cosmic War (Radical & Absolute)
04 Chaosmos
05 Melancholy Soul
06 Disegno 23
07 Disegno 24
08 La Speranza 8
09 Wander Elektro 2018 

NOTE: All but a few of these are beat-heavy instrumentals & remixes, presumably by Close Lobsters front man Andrew Burnett. Many are variations on the same melodic theme.

Port Talbot, Wales
May 21, 1987

soundboard recording (sound quality: VG+)

01 Going to Heaven to See If It Rains
02 Sewer Pipe Dream
03 Pimps
04 Pathetique
05 Just Too Bloody Stupid
06 Promise Me Back
07 I Kiss the Flower In Bloom 
08 Never Seen Before
09 I Take Bribes
10 Prophecy
11 Firestation Towers
12 Mother of God
MEGA THANKS to the taper and to lucky for the unexpected share!

Radio Sessions 1986-1989
FM & soundboard recordings
(sound quality: VG to VG+)
01 Nothing Really Matters
02 Going to Heaven to See If It Rains 
03 Pathetic Trivia
04 Never Seen Before
05 Loopholes
06 From This Day On
07 What Is There to Smile About?
08 Mirror Breaks (The Mob cover)
09 Lovely Little Swan
10 Knee Trembler
11 Nature Thing
12 Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
      (Soft Cell cover)
  • 01-04 = Janice Long BBC Radio 1 show. Rec. 29 June 1986. Broadcast 15 July 1986.
  • 05-08 = John Peel Session, BBC London. Rec. 15 Dec. 1987. Broadcast 4 Jan. 1988.
  • 09-12 = Radio Clyde Session 1989.

ROB SEZ: When I shared two CL live shows last Friday, I had very little left in the barrel to share later. Then, ASH-connected music hero lucky showed up with this radio session and the Wales live gig. ALL THANKS & PRAISE to lucky! Mystery bonus shares are hiding in plain sight...

FLAC + MP3@320 (Wales live set in flac; all else lossy)

ASH Tuesday post #89


Friday, March 16

Close Lobsters - Live 1987 + 1989

Clarendon Ballroom
Hammersmith, London, UK 
Feb. 28, 1987

opening set, supporting The Wedding Present

audience recording (sound quality: VG; transfer from master tape)
SAMPLE: "Going to Heaven to See If It Rains" (live 1987)

01 Sewer Pipe
02 Pimps
03 Pathetic Trivia
04 I Take Bribes
05 Wide Waterways
06 Never Seen Before
07 In Spite of These Times
08 Going to Heaven to 
     See If It Rains 
09 A Prophecy
10 Get What They Deserve

TT: 34:21 mins.

ROB SEZ: Close Lobsters were / are an indie band from Paisley, Scotland that caught an early break by landing a track on NME's well-received C86 compilation. The usual problems conspired to prevent wider acclaim, but Close Lobsters released a fine clutch of singles and two long-players in the late 1980s — all of them included in the 2015 Firestation Towers compilation. AllMusic refers to the band's sound as "neo-psychedelic jangle pop", which works for me. The group reunited in 2012 and thereafter released two EPs and mounted sporadic live gigs. SPECIAL THANKS to chrispoor for sharing the 1987 live set and extra thanks to the Stonecutter Archives & elegymart for the 1989 show. Sound quality is poorer than I prefer, but there's precious little rare stuff by this band to share. Look for more here soon...

Cabaret Metro
Chicago, Illinois
Nov. 3, 1989

audience recording
(sound quality: VG-)

01  audience
02  Nature Thing 
03  Arthur
04  I Kiss the Flower In Bloom 
05  Lovely Little Swan 
06  Gunpowderkeg
07  Never Seen Before
08  Pathetique  
09  Got Apprehension
10  Hey Hey, My My
      (Into the Black) 
11  Just Too Bloody Stupid  
12  Loopholes
13  Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
14  Knee Trembler  
15  Foxheads
16  In Spite of These Times

TT: 56:11 mins.

Close Lobsters:
Andrew Burnett - vocals
Graeme Wilmington - guitar, backing vocals
Tom Donnelly - guitar
Bob Burnett - bass 
Stewart McFayden - drums, backing vocals



Learn more about Close Lobsters' music at 
the band's FB page, Trouser Press & AllMusic

Tuesday, February 27

Nick Lowe - Around and About (Live 1990-2011)

Six broadcasts — three discs
FM captures (sound quality VG+ to VG++) 

Disc 1 - KCRW Santa Monica, CA 18 Feb. 1990 + Live From Daryl's House 15 June 2008


Disc 2 - Acoustic Magic + Frognerbadet Oslo, Norway 10 June 2011

Disc 3 - KEXP Seattle, WA 14 Oct. 2011 + KUT FM Austin, TX 1 Dec. 2011

51 tracks in all
MASSIVE THANKS to Don for sharing!
ASH Tuesday post #88

Friday, February 23

Difford & Tilbrook - Live 1984 + 1991 (FM)

Friars Club
Aylesbury, England
June 23, 1984


FM recording (sound quality: VG to VG+; sounds like a 2nd-generation tape source)

SAMPLE: "Goodbye Girl" (live 1991)

01 Man for All Seasons
02 Picking Up the Pieces
03 Love's Crashing Waves
04 Woman's World
05 Hope Fell Down
06 Band of Gold (Freda Payne cover) 
07 Tears for Attention
08 Action Speaks Faster
09 Annie Get Your Gun
10 Black Coffee In Bed
11 band intros + Labelled With Love
12 radio ID

ROB SEZ: Even for me, it's rather surprising this is my first Squeeze-related post — given the kind of music I normally share here. If you don't know the musical delights created by the founders and perennial leaders of the mighty Squeeze, you're in for a treat. If you're already a fan and don't have these, you know you need to snatch them immediately. All praises to Atlasstar and his friends for sharing these with the world.

Hard Rock Cafe
New York, NY
October 25, 1991

FM recording
(sound quality: VG+) 

01 Heart sings 'Happy Birthday'
02 interview
03 The House of Love
04 intro to live set
05 Crying In My Sleep
06 Pulling Mussels from a Shell 
07 Wicked and Cruel
08 Goodbye Girl
09 Satisfied
10 interview 2

Learn more about Difford & Tilbrook's music

Tuesday, February 20

Squeeze - New York, NY 1988 (FM)

The Ritz
New York, NY
July 31, 1988

FM capture (sound quality: VG to VG+)

01 Footprints
02 Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)  
03 Take Me I'm Yours
04  She Doesn't Have to Shave
05 Striking Matches
06 Piccadilly
07 Is That Love?
08 In the Heat of the Night
09 Up the Junction
10 Cool for Cats
11 Boogie Woogie Country Girl 
12 Another Nail In My Heart
13 Melody Motel
14 The Prisoner
15 Hourglass
16 Tempted
17 Vanity Fair
18 Annie Get Your Gun
19 When the Hangover Strikes
20 Such a Night
21 Black Coffee In Bed
22 Too Busy Thinking about 
     My Baby

BIG, SLOPPY THANKS to Don at the old ASH blog!

ASH Tuesday post #87
come back in a few days for Difford & Tilbrook live

Friday, February 16

Wondermints - The Early Years (demos galore)

Blue, Purple & Green tapes 
4-track recordings
Darian's bedroom
Los Angeles, CA

soundboard recordings (quality: VG+ to VG++; tape cases say "Produced, Arranged and Recorded in homegrown quadrotrack splendor by Los Wondermintos")

SAMPLE: "Silly Place" (4-track recording, 1992)

The Wondermints in their early years: all praises to Angelo at Power Pop Criminals
Angelo compiled these & created the artwork.
Some of these songs ended up on the debut album, but only after being re-mixed & mastered.
'Mintsmania' collection
More demos, live tracks, rarities

Learn more about the Wondermints' 
music at AllMusic or this FB page

Tuesday, February 13

Octopus - Live 1996 + B-Sides

Golders Green Hippodrome
North London, UK
BBC Radio 1 Live Broadcast
June 17, 1996
FM capture (sound quality: VG+)

ROB SEZ: Over the years, many bands have called themselves Octopus. This Octopus is the Scottish group that recorded one album, the excellent From A to B, released in 1996. These guys were lumped in with the whole Britpop thing — presumably because they played rock, were active in the late 1990s, and are from that part of the world. If you know the album and think it's pretty good, you should hear them play live. Mick compiled the tracks and created the artwork for the live show, and Don is the guy to thank for the B-Sides & Rarities comp below. I'm the culprit who created the cover art for the latter.

B-Sides & Rarities
various recording info
sourced from singles & an EP

CD singles & vinyl rips (sound quality: VG to VG++)
14 non-album tracks from Octopus singles & one EP. 
None is in print or otherwise available through official channels
This is ASH Tuesday post #86
Learn more about Octopus' music 

Friday, February 9

Semisonic - Live (19 Years Apart)

Irving Plaza
New York, NY
Oct. 17, 1998 

audience recording (sound quality: VG to VG+; overall, an impressive recording, with vocals slightly distant at times, but audience noise is not an issue)
SAMPLE: "DND" (live 2017)

Semisonic: 2017 reunion show
(this & purplish photo below: Vito Ingerto / Twin Cities Media)
01 F.N.T.
02 Singing In My Sleep 
03 Never You Mind
04 Secret Smile
05 Down In Flames
06 If I Run
07 In Another Life
08 DND
09 Erotic City (Prince cover)
10 Delicious
11 Closing Time
12 encore break
13 This Will Be My Year
14 I Got You (Split Enz cover)
15 California
16 taper ID

Taped and transferred by KamenLiter; tracked by smores; normalization, eq’ing & minor compression added by Rob-in-Brevard. MEGA THANKS to smores for sharing.

Turf Club
Saint Paul, MN
Dec. 13, 2017

audience recording (sound quality: VG++; quite excellent audience recording; no complaints)

01 intro/stage banter
02 Closing Time
03 Singing In My Sleep 
04 Made To Last
05 Never You Mind
06 stage banter
07 Secret Smile
08 tuning/stage banter
09 DND
10 Completely Pleased
11 This Will Be My Year
12 All Worked Out
13 California
14 tuning/stage banter
15 She Spreads Her Wings
16 tuning/stage banter
17 Gone to the Movies
18 I Got You (Split Enz cover)
19 tuning/stage banter
20 All It Would Take*
21 Basement Tapes*
22 tuning/stage banter
23 Long Way From Home+
24 Chemistry
25 crowd noise
26 Take Me With U

*new songs
+outtake from Feeling Strangely Fine sessions

ROB SEZ: For a brief time in the late 1990s and early 2000s, Semisonic was "that band" — the group that had a huge hit with "Closing Time", with other catchy songs on the soundtracks of a few high-profile movies, and multiple live appearances on late night TV. Semisonic's popularity encompassed rock fans, Top 40 radio, and even alternative music aficionados. Later, frontman Dan Wilson parlayed his band's popularity into well-deserved success as a songwriter for hire. Even if you don't know Wilson, you've heard his songs (in most cases, co-writes): Adele's "Someone Like You", the Dixie Chicks' "Not Ready to Make Nice", John Legend's "You and I", Taylor Swift's "Treacherous", etc., etc. Last year, Wilson recorded and released Re-Covered, an album of his songs made famous by others, but sung this time by the man himself. MEGA THANKS to norma023 for taping and sharing the 2017 reunion show.
FLAC  |  MP3@320

Learn more about Semisonic's music at 
Dan Wilson's official site, Dan's FB page & AllMusic

Tuesday, February 6

Dumptruck - Boston, MA 1985 (aud)

The Rat
Boston, MA
Dec. 14, 1985 

audience recording (sound quality: VG; source is a 1st-gen. tape from bassist Spike Priggen's JVC recorder; the vocals are clear and there’s good instrumental separation)

01 stage entrance, tuning
02 Alone
03 Back Where I Belong
04 Change
05 Seven Steps (Up)
06 Secrets
07 You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere
08 Nine People
09 Epics
10 Autumn Light
11 pre-encore applause --> How Come?   
12 Walk Into Mirrors

ROB SEZ: Dumptruck was formed by Seth Tiven and Kirk Swan in Boston, MA in 1983. Around the time R.E.M. was starting to get noticed by a wider audience, Tiven and Swan were combining jangle pop, the twin guitar sound pioneered by Television, and a judicious touch of twang. By the time of Positively Dumptruck, their second long-player, the band was creating something unique and compelling. for the country was the group's third — and some say best — LP before a legal dispute with its label blew up and general fatigue set in, bringing Dumptruck's first musical phase to a close. Tiven relocated to Austin, TX and revived Dumptruck in the 1990s, releasing three albums up until the recent release of Wrecked, the latest studio project (see below). This 1985 live set commemorates bassist Spike Priggen's first gig with Dumptruck. Thank you, Spike, for sharing your audio souvenir & most of these photos.
Seth Tiven - guitar, vocals | Kirk Swan - guitar, vocals
Spike Priggen - bass, vocals (at left)Shawn "King" Devlin - drums
New Dumptruck Studio Album!
Seth Tiven says this is the album he's been trying to finish for 10 years.
A recent PledgeMusic campaign finally did the trick. It's worth the wait.
Stream the entire album at Soundcloud. Buy it at Collector's Choice or Amazon.
Learn more about Dumptruck's music 
at the band's FB page or AllMusic


Friday, February 2

Field Music - Glasgow, SCT 2018

The Quay Sessions
BBC Pacific Quay studios
Glasgow, Scotland
Jan. 10, 2018 (first broadcast was the following day) 

web stream (sound quality VG++)

SAMPLE: "Let's Write a Book" (live 2018)

Field Music = David & Peter Brewis & collaborators

01 Roddy Hart intro
02 Time In Joy
03 Them That Do Nothing 
04 Count It Up
05 interview
06 Disappointed
07 Let's Write a Book
08 The Noisy Days Are Over
09 Share a Pillow
10 No King No Princess
11 Stay Awake
12 Roddy Hart outro

TT: 45:53 mins
HUGE THANKS to auto_pilot for sharing

KEXP Radio
Live Session
Seattle, WA
Visual representation of what Field Music sound like...
March 28, 2015

preFM recording (sound quality: VG++)

01 The Noisy Days Are Over
02 I'm Glad
03 Disappointed
04 Don't You Want to Know 

The new album: Open Here
     What's Wrong?

ROB SEZ: Are Field Music the next XTC? Or a combination of XTC, Wire & some other band you've never heard of? The answer probably depends on which Field Music album you're enjoying and your own taste in music. One writer describes their sound as a "colorful and hyper-musical blend of tricky Beach Boys melodies filtered through a post-rock-meets-prog-rock-meets-soft-rock aesthetic" — which probably fit their sound several albums ago. However you describe it, it's all a tad too "out there" for me. But Field Music have been releasing music since 2005 and there's no question they're hugely talented & quite entertaining. Your new cup of tea, perhaps? The new album, Open Here (4-star review from Mojo), is out today.

FLAC (2018 set in flac; 2015 lossy set is included) 

Learn more about Field Music at the band's own site, FB page and AllMusic