Japan’s Quiet Life Gets Another Listen

Released in 1979, Japan’s third album Quiet Life marked a stylistic turning point from the London group’s glam-rock beginnings and the electronic, experimental art-pop they’d pursue in the early ‘80s. On March 5th, BMG will release an expanded CD edition of the album, appending B-sides, non-album singles, alternate mixes and an entire live show recorded… Continue reading Japan’s Quiet Life Gets Another Listen

Another Reissue? Oh-OK

Oh-OK, NYC, 1983 (?) © Laura Levine

Steered by Linda Hopper and Lynda Stipe, Oh-OK’s simple swirl of minimalist post-punk and danceable dream-pop was a cool and refreshing addition to the early Athens new wave club scene at a time before such genre descriptors had yet to develop palpable meaning. They existed all of three years, releasing only a four-song 7-inch (Wow… Continue reading Another Reissue? Oh-OK

Peter Stampfel

Goodbye 20th Century: Peter Stampfel Bids It a Fond Farewell, but Leaves the Light On “Good ol’ Ricola.” Peter Stampfel paused to unwrap a lozenge nearly an hour into a lively conversation. This was no product plug, but rather a coping mechanism. Stampfel suffers from dysphonia, and has completely lost his voice for extended periods… Continue reading Peter Stampfel

The Gun Club, Part 3 (Patricia Morrison Interview)

Patricia Morrison Gun Club Bass Guitarist, June 1982 – December 1984 Though she only recorded their third studio album, The Las Vegas Story, with the band, Patricia Morrison will forever be associated with The Gun Club, as much if not more for the female yang and gothic visual impact she brought to the band as… Continue reading The Gun Club, Part 3 (Patricia Morrison Interview)

The Gun Club, Part 2 (Ward Dotson Interview)

Ward Dotson Gun Club Guitarist, November 1980 – December 1982 Prior to joining The Gun Club, Dotson was in the hardcore band Der Stab, whose demos occasionally turn up on punk compilations. After two years of madness in Gun Club, for whom he supplied that ruthless, blistering guitar sound of the first two albums, he… Continue reading The Gun Club, Part 2 (Ward Dotson Interview)

Richard Hell Repaves His Destiny Street

Richard Hell & the Voidoids’ second and final album, Destiny Street, had a troubled story from the start. After the band’s original lineup disintegrated, for a few interim years Hell occupied his time with acting and smack, while different players shifted in and out of the Voidoids. When Destiny Street finally came out in 1982,… Continue reading Richard Hell Repaves His Destiny Street

Cool Town

Cool Town: How Athens, Georgia, Launched Alternative Music and Changed American Culture By Grace Elizabeth Hale [University of North Carolina Press] Damn, I am old. So why does it blow my mind that 40+ years have transpired since Athens became the nexus of the Southern avant-garde, the wellspring of Georgia post-punk and the cool place… Continue reading Cool Town

The Gun Club’s Miami Gets Its Due

The best rock ‘n’ roll album ever made, The Gun Club’s second album Miami, is finally being properly re-released in expanded form on Dec. 4 via Blixa Sounds. The remastered 1982 album, produced by Chris Stein of Blondie (a favorite band of the late Jeffrey Lee Pierce), will be augmented with a second vinyl LP… Continue reading The Gun Club’s Miami Gets Its Due

Berlin – Pleasure Victim

The most irritating thing about Pride Month every summer is the people terrified of being mistaken for boring heterosexuals. They get all compulsive about making some bold social media statement without realizing they’re echoing a Margaret Cho joke from way back when she was funny: “Turns out I’m just a slut – where’s my parade?”… Continue reading Berlin – Pleasure Victim

The Midnight

Eighties Schmeighties: The Midnight Just Wants You to Dance With Somebody Tyler Lyle was born in 1985, a year when much of the synthpop music his band The Midnight emulates was enjoying peak popularity. Growing up outside of Carrollton, Georgia, however, Lyle was more likely to be boppin’ his head to ‘80s and ‘90s country… Continue reading The Midnight

Love Tractor’s First Album Reissued, Plus RSD 7-Inch

Love Tractor’s self-titled debut album, originally released on Atlanta’s DB Recs in 1982, has been remixed and remastered by David Barbe and occasional Love Tractor drummer Bill Berry, and will be reissued on Nov. 6 on Athens-based label HHBTM. The gussied-up edition – on vinyl, CD and digital – will feature revised cover art, and… Continue reading Love Tractor’s First Album Reissued, Plus RSD 7-Inch

And Also The Trees’ Early Growth Unearthed

Originally out in 1984, Savannah’s ace indie Graveface Records will reissue the self-titled debut album from British post-punk/goth group And Also the Trees as part of the Record Store Day “first drop” retail event on Aug. 29. Lol Tolhurst of The Cure produced that one, but the two groups’ mutual respect didn’t start there, as… Continue reading And Also The Trees’ Early Growth Unearthed

Feast on This: Pylon Box Details Revealed

We’ve been aware for a while now that a Pylon vinyl box set was in the works. Well, now the full details on the four-album package have been revealed, and it looks amazing! The core of Pylon Box – to be released Nov. 6 on New West Records – will be the band’s first two… Continue reading Feast on This: Pylon Box Details Revealed

The B-52s Share Their US Festivities

Thirty-eight years after the first US Festival took place near San Bernardino, California on Labor Day weekend 1982, Shout! Factory is releasing The B-52s: Live at the US Festival, a concert DVD of the Athens, Georgia band’s hour-long performance that sweltering September day. Sandwiched in between earlier sets that day from the likes of Gang… Continue reading The B-52s Share Their US Festivities

Box Set Shines Light on Richard and Linda Thompson

Hard Luck Stories, an 8-CD box set of Richard and Linda Thompson’s work together from 1972 to 1982, is scheduled to be released on Sept. 11 via Universal in the UK. As is the usual standard, a load of bonus material is being included as well, including 30 previously unreleased recordings. Each of the six… Continue reading Box Set Shines Light on Richard and Linda Thompson

Unearthed Side Effects Footage Offers Glimpse of Early ’80s Athens

Athens band The Side Effects were just four months past their debut performance (which was headlining the April 1980 party at that old church where R.E.M. also made their live debut) when then-recent UGA grad and future Stomp and Stammer contributing writer Gregory Nicoll and accompanying crew tracked the trio down at a gig at… Continue reading Unearthed Side Effects Footage Offers Glimpse of Early ’80s Athens

True Vision

True Vision: One Man’s View of South Florida Punk 1979-1984 Photos by Jim Johnson [self-published] Bolstered by heavy media/industry presence, avant-garde art scene, urban trashiness and sheer population (among many other factors), New York City was the obvious epicenter of the early American punk and new wave outbursts, followed closely by Los Angeles and, to… Continue reading True Vision

Prince’s Sign Expands for the Times

Prince’s 1987 album Sign O’ the Times endured a convoluted path to fruition. The year prior, he initially had two albums in the works: a full collaboration with his band The Revolution titled Dream Factory, and a solo album called Camille, the latter intended to be promoted as being by a new singer named Camille,… Continue reading Prince’s Sign Expands for the Times

Josie Cotton

Queen “B” Josie Cotton Goes to the Drive-In “My whole life I’ve been fixated on science-fiction,” announces singer Josie Cotton, speaking by phone from her home in Silver Lake, California. It’s an unexpected admission from a pop singer best known for reviving the sweet sound of ‘60s girl groups on her 1982 Elektra LP Convertible… Continue reading Josie Cotton

Face It

Face It By Debbie Harry [Dey Street/Harper Collins] Blondie’s Debbie Harry has always been something of a consciously postmodern shape-shifter, even when said shape-shifting was a prefiguration of the postmodern condition that would be defined by frou-frou critical theorists in the late 1970s. Playfully manipulating her persona for the entirety of her career, Deborah Harry… Continue reading Face It

Of Montreal Get Their Freak On

As far as I can tell, our review of Of Montreal’s last album triggered nearly all of the publicists from the PR company the band uses, Girlie Action, to drop S&S from their mailing lists, to the level that they barely even email us press releases anymore. Which is pretty funny, because it harms their… Continue reading Of Montreal Get Their Freak On

Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice

It’s acceptable to like Fleetwood Mac and Journey now, but Linda Ronstadt remains filed away as a ’70s schlock icon. For good reason, too. Michael Nesmith noted in song that Ronstadt mostly bridged a gap between Marie Osmond and Bonnie Raitt. Today, she seems more like the Me Decade’s take on Celine Dion – with… Continue reading Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice

This is Not Berlin

Seen as a rite of passage in a culture that demands conformity, two friends, Carlos (Xabiani Ponce de Leon) and Gera (Jose Antonio Toledano), set their sights above high rivalries and their anticipation of World Cup soccer, aiming instead for the hedonic pursuits of Mexico’s clandestine nightlife at the various clubs and bars in director… Continue reading This is Not Berlin

Echo & the Bunnymen Peel Back History

All of Echo & the Bunnymen’s recordings for John Peel’s BBC Radio 1 program are being compiled on a 2-LP set that Rhino Records intends to release Sept. 6 – in the UK only. The 21 tracks on The John Peel Sessions 1979-1983 span the Liverpool group’s formative years up through material that landed on… Continue reading Echo & the Bunnymen Peel Back History

The Replacements Box Their Dead Man’s Pop

Unlike some of their fans at the time (and the band itself), I thoroughly loved The Replacements’ 1989 album Don’t Tell a Soul from the get-go. Their first album with guitarist Slim Dunlap, it may have toned down the band’s blaring raggedness in favor of maturity (gasp!) and a smooth pop sheen (double gasp!), but… Continue reading The Replacements Box Their Dead Man’s Pop

David Crosby: Remember My Name

David Crosby has proudly spent years admitting that he has to preemptively apologize to anyone who comes up with a story of having met him during the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. A documentary about all of those moments would be pretty great. Remember My Name is a little different, but still provides plenty of entertainment as the… Continue reading David Crosby: Remember My Name