Archive for “Floating Coffin”

Thee Oh Sees “Drop” The Big One

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on April 19, 2014 by johnbuckley100

Just before Christmas, as the staff at Tulip Frenzy World HQ were deep into the eggnog, word spread that Thee Oh Sees were going on “extended hiatus.”  Even allowing for the notion that for a band as prolific as John Dwyer’s SF outfit has been since 2006, that probably meant only a few months delay until the next ‘un, it cast quite a pall.  Everyone avoided the mistletoe.  By the time the lights were pulled on the Xmas tree, by the time the pizza crust was swept into the trash bag, everyone was ready to go home.

Thankfully, Dwyer’s just released Drop, and though the “band” is missing the delectable Brigid Dawson and that red-hot rhythm section of Petey Dammit! and Mike Shoun — the cohorts who helped propel Floating Coffin into the coveted #2 spot on the 2013 Tulip Frenzy Top 10 List (c) — this is a real Thee Oh Sees album. Which is to say it is a work of undiluted, 100 Proof rock’n’roll genius.  It will be the soundtrack to Tulip Frenzy’s Easter Egg Hunt tomorrow, let us tell you. The Easter Bunny will surely bounce his little cottontail off.

So Dwyer has moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles, in search of lebensraum.  Oddly, Drop was recorded in Sacaramento, but rather than bring along his pals from the most recent incarnation of Thee Oh Sees, he holed up with producer Chris Woodhouse (who plays decent enough drums) and a gang that includes Mikal Cronin.  If you are expecting some vast departure from the sound that has so delighted us on the last two Thee Oh Sees records — the amazing Putrifiers II and of course Floating Coffin — you’ve probably misunderstood just what Dwyer has evolved into.  He could recruit the checkout clerks from a Vons Supermarket and quickly get them up to snuff, churning out melodic punk rock that spans the gamut from the Ty Segall Band to the Beatles.

We will no doubt report in more in the days ahead; overnight, this thing dropped into our iTunes library like a Faberge egg.  Let us just say that the polymath Mr. Dwyer, whose production chops helped actualize Tim Presley’s White Fence project into one of the best albums of 2013, whose Vinegar Mirror was such a cool photo project somehow we are staring at two of them, and whose last several albums with Thee Oh Sees — however they are configured — could singlehandedly restore our faith in the magical elixir that is real rock’n’roll… let us just say that it already is clear that Drop is the Big One, a career-worthy collection of songs that could be a desert-isle compilation of raw goodness.  Happy Ishtar.

The # 2 Album On The 2013 Tulip Frenzy Top Ten List ™ Is Thee Oh Sees “Floating Coffin”

Posted in Music with tags , , , on December 8, 2013 by johnbuckley100

Smart readers can probably catch the link between several of our favorite recs this year — John Dwyer of Thee Oh Sees, who is a one-man carnival of fine rock’n’roll.  We love Thee Oh Sees, but never more than when Floating Coffin came out, when we were forced to ask if it was the best album since Meet The Beatles.  As we shall, see, there was one better record in 2013, but that ‘un won by a nostril hair.

As we said at the time:

“Look, Thee Oh Sees will likely always come off on record like a band trying to bottle the sweaty reek of their live set, and make no mistake, Floating Coffin undulates with the bodies in front of the stage, beer spew on party dresses, that 2:00 AM feeling where not only do you realize you can’t get to work the next day, but why should you?  They deliver the epiphany that leads to quitting said job so as to dedicate one’s life to becoming Thee Oh Sees’ roadie, or at least something more productive and meaningful than cubicle life in the Googleplex.  But Floating Coffin does so much more. Just take “Strawberries 1+ 2,” a song that begins like arena rock and ends up like Fripp and Eno.  They may tear up the place, but this is not a bar band.  This is a band that a dozen or so records into their career (we’re serious now) are exploring new territory like lunar captains with a thirst for yonder galaxies.

We thought the bossest pop song of 2012 was Thee Oh Sees’ “Hang A Picture,” which may reveal more about us than it does about them, but the point is — and returning to our initial riff — these guys have confounded the model by which bands that produce new albums every six months just keep playing the same stuff.  You have no idea what Thee Oh Sees are going to come out with next!  A No Wave rock opera.  Speed-metal yodeling.  Eddy Cochran backed by zithers. We are completely serious: this is a band that through sheer dint of trying proves every mother’s maxim that if only little Johnny puts his mind to it, he can do anything.  If little Johnny is John Dwyer, the answer is yes, yes he can.  And you would be well advised to catch up.  Sometimes when a band is so good but has such a head start, you don’t know where to jump in. Floating Coffin is an excellent place to begin.”

Ok, Must Be Said: Thee Oh Sees’ “Floating Coffin” Is The Most Thrilling Record We’ve Heard In Years

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on April 21, 2013 by johnbuckley100

Here at Tulip Frenzy, we don’t take ourselves particularly seriously, and when we try to alert gentle readers to an album by one of our fave offbeat bands they might not otherwise, in the ordinary course of being an American human, come across, we often are a little tongue’n’cheek about the rock’n’roll that twangs our woogie.  But earlier in the week, when we gushed about Thee Oh Sees and declared their new album, Floating Coffin, to be somewhere between the best record since the British Invasion and Thee Oh Sees’ next one — which we figured, given their prolificness, might show up around summer — we found ourselves alternately showing off, having fun with this whole rock crit’ anything goes style-o’ writing and the sober-as-a-judge realization that, Holy Moley, this thing really is fantastic.  Little waves of seriousness lapped ashore throughout our *review*, and we found ourselves, a day or so hence, goin’, “Is it really that great, or is it even greater?”

Folks, we are serious as a heart attack when we pronounce the following: after three days, metaphorically speaking, locked in our basement with the headphones on, cheeseburgers slid under the door by loved ones since we won’t come out, playing Floating Coffin over and over and over again some more, we are compelled to report that it is (intentionally designed quote alert) the most thrilling rock’n’roll album we have listened to since at least Ty Segall’s Twins, and maybe since that first Elastica album, or even Surfer Rosa/Come On Pilgrim.

We’re not going to go through the damn thing song by song, but let us just say that if want 39 minutes of sheer cussed joy; if you are looking for an album that will get your heart rate raised while you grok on its sheer sonic blissfulness; if you are looking for an album that gallops along with Secretariat’s speed but has moments of beauty like My Friend Flicka nuzzling your neck; if you want an album by a band that, at this amazing stage in its development, could blow the roof of any punk rock Hellhole in Christendom, yet also, we believe, could get the stoned out hippies at a jam-band forum like Bonnaroo to shake their R. Crumb asses, well, stop what you’re doing, get Floating Coffin and prepare for years of bliss.

Yeah, we can rejoin the world now.  And someone else can go clean the basement.

Thee Oh Sees “Floating Coffin”: Best Album Since “Meet The Beatles”? Or Just The Best Thee Oh Sees Record Of The Year So Far?

Posted in Music with tags , , , on April 16, 2013 by johnbuckley100

When a band puts out 197 records in just a few short years, it’s hard for the impecunious fans who matter most to save all their lunch money for the new stuff.  Is the rumor true — okay, I started it — that it was a fan of Thee Oh Sees who first persuaded VCs to pony up the moolah to start Spotify?  The band does come from San Francisco…  Not saying it happened, but it is possible that an Oh Sees fan, realizing they just couldn’t keep up with all the fine punk rock John Dwyer and co. were pumping out, had to devise some way of getting their fix, and so they pitched Sean Parker, or maybe someone else who said, “A million songs ain’t cool.  You know what’s cool?  A billion songs.”

But here’s the thing.  A band that can put out a record faster than Joyce Carol Oates writes books often just puts out the same album, over and over again.  Now an exception to this rule, it’s true, is young Mr. Ty Segall, and funny we should mention Ty since clearly he and Thee Oh Sees are thick as thieves.  But as it is with Ty — who shows almost infinite potential — after seeing how quickly Thee Oh Sees ramped up since just 2011’s Carrion Crawler/The Dream, we may have to come up with a new rule book.  We’re talking hockey stick growth, the flowering of musical genius, and from a decent enough base.  If that album made you think of early Pere Ubu, then think what a leap it was to put out last year’s Tulip Frenzy Top Ten (c) list-maker Putrifiers II, which thundered along at a double-drum clip, saxophone added to the simple guitars-bass-drums, and then took unexpected veers into rockin’ cellos and even glam.  And now we have Floating Coffin, which qualifies not only as the most thrilling punk rock album in an age, but — and we’re not trying to embarrass them, it’s just true — also contains songs that are pretty as peaches and tasty as pie.

Look, Thee Oh Sees will likely always come off on record like a band trying to bottle the sweaty reek of their live set, and make no mistake, Floating Coffin undulates with the bodies in front of the stage, beer spew on party dresses, that 2:00 AM feeling where not only do you realize you can’t get to work the next day, but why should you?  They deliver the epiphany that leads to quitting said job so as to dedicate one’s life to becoming Thee Oh Sees’ roadie, or at least something more productive and meaningful than cubicle life in the Googleplex.  But Floating Coffin does so much more. Just take “Strawberries 1+ 2,” a song that begins like arena rock and ends up like Fripp and Eno.  They may tear up the place, but this is not a bar band.  This is a band that a dozen or so records into their career (we’re serious now) are exploring new territory like lunar captains with a thirst for yonder galaxies.

We thought the bossest pop song of 2012 was Thee Oh Sees’ “Hang A Picture,” which may reveal more about us than it does about them, but the point is — and returning to our initial riff — these guys have confounded the model by which bands that produce new albums every six months just keep playing the same stuff.  You have no idea what Thee Oh Sees are going to come out with next!  A No Wave rock opera.  Speed-metal yodeling.  Eddy Cochran backed by zithers. We are completely serious: this is a band that through sheer dint of trying proves every mother’s maxim that if only little Johnny puts his mind to it, he can do anything.  If little Johnny is John Dwyer, the answer is yes, yes he can.  And you would be well advised to catch up.  Sometimes when a band is so good but has such a head start, you don’t know where to jump in. Floating Coffin is an excellent place to begin.

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