Thursday, September 23, 2010

A bounty of Poster Children downloadables.

So, tonight I blew off a swank opening party of a film festival, which I could have gone to with a really cute gal. Now, keep in mind that I got to spend a bit of time with said cute gal today, and will be able to spend more time with her in the upcoming weeks. But still. Party? Appetizers? Drinks? No, I'm at home, writing on my blog. What can I say? Sometimes I forget how to be sociable, I've gotten so used to sitting around by myself. It's not an excuse, just something that happened. But I'm having my own drinks and appetizers, and I'm writing about Poster Children.

Oh! Mighty Poster Children! Formed at the University of Illinois Shampoo Banana in 1987, and still (slightly) active today. They've slowed down quite a bit, but we had the great honour of playing with them at two of their five shows in 2009, and they have not lost a step. Andy Lester had not seen them in their current incarnation, with drummer Matt, and he was pretty amazed. Justifiably so, as Matt was ON FUCKING FIRE at the 2009 shows. I also got to point at Rose, and say to my pal Anya, "See how much I rip off from her?" Anya nodded in agreement.

I think I've seen them more than any other band. They've never disappointed. I actually did not like them the first time I saw them, in Green Bay, on February 27th, 1997. But it was my fault, as I had not brought earplugs and they were very loud. Luckily, I was dragged to their show in Madison the next night, and I understood. So good, this band. So unassumingly wonderful. Possibly egoless, just fueled by the sheer power of good music. Purveyors of the best tour diaries on Earth (except, maybe, those by Michael Dalquist.) I don't listen to their records all the time these days, because I don't have to. They sing in my head, and I can recall so many songs that way.

They have taught us much as a band, as Fugazi taught them. How to be a good, independent rock and roll band, how to tour on a budget, how to be nice people who support their scene. They have always supported us, not necessarily in a mom-and-dad sort of way, but maybe more in a proud-uncle-and-aunt fashion. All of this means a lot to me, but on top of all of it, they are just a damn good band. We brought them up to play a show in Manitowoc way back in 2002, and it was a damn good one. I remember standing next to Rose while Death and Taxes played, and pointing at Matt, on the edge of the crowd. "Look at your drummer!" I crowed, as he dove into the crowd and started a mosh pit. She grinned, and so did I. We had to follow them that night, and I was awfully anxious. They brought it, as they always did, and we had to match it. It's a proud thing for me to say, but I think we did. Those are our best nights, really, when we're up against Poster Children or NoMeansNo or Enon, and we hold our own. That's when I think we're a good band.

Anyway, enough of this blah-blah-blah. As any good internet-mp3-blogger type will do, I was reading another blog. Specifically the mighty Power of Independent Trucking, home of the amazing Joy Division and New Order remasters, amongst many other wonderful things. Browsing around in all of this, I stumbled across this post, beseeching all us anonymous folk to come forward with a copy of Toreador Squat, an early tape that Trouser Press described as "a raw, basic, set-length cassette for admirers of the band's live shows." "Oh, I have that!" I thought to myself. "But my old rip kinda sucks. I should do an upgrade!"

So I did.

Here it is. I tried to futz around with FLAC, but I couldn't figure out, using their frontend, how to convert the files. So, seeing as it's direct from cassette and all, I figured fuck it, I'll just put it up as wav files. So, this is a big download. Like 300mb. But you can handle it. Also included are a few tracks released on Chambana-area comps that Carlin gave me. Tracks as follows:

1. Hollywood USA
2. the Bump Bump Song
3. Rain On Me
4. Detective Tracy
5. Carrie Look Ahead
6. And So It Goes (the Skanky Song)
7. Jeremy Straight
8. White Noise (Black Light) (aka Question)
9. The Un-Reggae Song
10. Carver's of NYC
11. State of Mind
12. the Weenie Song
13. Five Minutes
14. the Half-Time Song

The cassette-deck-to-laptop setup I used to transfer this had some sort of automatic noise-eliminating action going on, possibly due to the low output from the deck. It didn't seem to affect the songs, though, just the silences between the songs, so I let it be. Many of these tunes showed up on their first real album (or even their second!) in superior versions. I think the demo take of "Rain on Me" is better, though, and it's a tragedy that this is the only recording of "Carrie Look Ahead," a lovely song about how life pretty much sucks. Includes scans of the insert, so you can make yourself your very own Toreador Squat!

Bonus tracks are:
-Where We Live
-It's True
-White Noise
-Cinnamon Girl

Yes, that "Cinnamon Girl." I suppose I would have been much more surprised to hear that if I hadn't seen PKids do "All Along the Watchtower" at the Cowboy Monkey last year.

Oh, and hey! You know what? Just because I love you, here's a board tape of their set at the Great Cover Up, back in 1998. They did Talking Heads that year. The set-ender of "Once in a Lifetime" is pretty chaotic, but "Memories Can't Wait" is a jewel.

I think that's all I have, unless anybody needs the "Copyright" self-bootleg of singles and comp tracks. I can post that, if necessary. Anyway.

Dear Pkids, love you. Keep it up.