Saturday, October 15, 2011

What I Am Listening To Now: "Bring It On" by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

Okay, the video is a little annoying, but it is a great song.


What I Am Listening To Now: "Iris" by Miranda Sex Garden

Bands Lost In The Foggy Wastes Of My Memory: Slam Suzzanne

Interviews, "I Like To Say Fuck," and "Hell Night Tour" (at  6:05)...

This morning I was listening to some old MP3s from these guys that I crudely ripped from my old cassette copy of On the floor with your Mom a few years ago (no, it's best if we don't talk about that) and I decided to run one of those interweb searches on this band... Much to my surprise, I found a couple of interesting items.  Some fond memories from others and, lo and behold, a MySpace profile where I nicked these pictures and song links from.

Slam Suzzanne was just your basic, competent, fun punk rock band. No more, no less, and in my late teens, I loved them.  There were few all ages shows in Seattle back in those days, but I tried to get out there to see them whenever I could.  I think they played a few more all-ages gigs than most bands, also, which probably was another reason why I was into them

The show I remember best was at the Ballard Firehouse.  They had been popped for serving to a minor, or something like that, and were forced to do some all ages shows on Sunday afternoons.  You could tell that the staff hated it, but us kids had a great time.  Memorable moments: someone set off some sort of stink bomb and the place almost needed to be evacuated and, for free with your ticket stub, you got a slice of what is still to this day the absolutely worst pizza I have ever had the misfortune to take a bite of.  It tasted like, it's hard to say, either cat vomit or dog vomit.  One or the other or something even worse.

As I found on my search, it appears that I am not the only one with fond memories of this band.  It seems like a lot of guys thought that Tymber, their chick drummer, was cute, but she was way more woman than a kid like me could imagine handling at the time. To me, she was a little more scary than cute. She used to play with those cheap sticks that would flay to pieces every couple songs... Hot, but very intimidating.  This was also before I started playing in bands myself, and so everyone still had that untouchable shine of semi-celebrity to me anyway.

Another interesting thing...  Years later, one of the guitar players I worked with for a few years mentioned that Tymber was his cousin.  Seems like she had a big family, because today I found someone else mentioning this on Facebook, and then again on YouTube.

Enough from me, here are some other stories about this band:
The Rick Emerson Show - Songs that Time Forgot: Slam Suzanne
Several days later, a large, black envelope arrived. With a return-address sticker that said "Slam Suzanne" in big letters, and with a Groening-esque bunny head for a logo, it looked a little otherworldly.
I ripped it open, and surveyed the enclosed material. Press clippings, stickers, and a picture of the band. The drummer was a cute girl named "Tymber" -- this was definitely a plus.
Also enclosed was a CD, which I gleefully put into the CD player. Free music! What a great scam this was! Radio rules!"
The songs that poured out were short, fast, and scary-cool...sort of like The Ramones meets Slayer.
The band was also singing about something mystifying...something called a "double latte." What the hell was that? I didn't know, but it sounded like some incredible, all-powerful thing. (Which, of course, was not far from the truth.)
A few days later, I snookered the band into doing an on-air interview with me over the phone (my second-ever band interview, the first being *ahem* Pretty Boy Floyd), and I promised to see them when they passed through town from Seattle. (Seattle! They were big-time rock stars, talking to ME!)
Of course, by the time the show came around, I had fucked up somehow and been forbidden to leave the house. Not quite rock and roll enough to sneak out, I glumly stayed in my room, pondering the debauched fun I was, no doubt, missing. (Later, I heard that the band had asked where "Ed Zeppelin" was. I'm sure they'd had no clue I was a teenager; I wonder what their reactions were upon hearing that Ed was, in fact, grounded.)
Time has passed, life has gone on, and Slam Suzanne seem to have faded away. There's precious little to prove they existed at all, but in my Big Box of Radio Stuff, I still have a dusty, crackling, black envelope...with a return address that promised excitement, and a band picture featuring a drummer who still seems unbelievably hot.
'via Blog this'
Some more memories...
Slam Suzzanne: Excerpts from a topic discussion on Old School Seattle Rock on Facebook
Jeff Aylesworth
I wish! I still listen to them every once in a while... One of my local favorites! On the Floor With Your Mom! hahaha 
Chris Fox
My band, Bitter End, played a bunch of gigs with Slam Suzzanne. The most noteworthy was somehwere in Tri-Cities, where Matt (the pre-Phil singer) trashed the venue's bathroom and then blamed it on the local crowd. 
And then there are the lyrics. My favorite: 
"I like to say fuck, I like to say fuck, I like to say fuck--it's better than shit!" 
Colin Owen Griffin 
Handbill for the reunion show at Tony's V's Garage, 
November 21st 2009 in Everett, WA.
My first show @ The Vogue, I was in Grin, we opened for Slam Suzanne. Cute little drummer, with hammers for hands. 
Troy Oliver 
I knew there "road crew"... Spencer from the Nashville, TN area. Timber was an awesome drummer. They played at a skate park in Dalton, GA in the early 1990's. If anyone has the CD or MP3's.... Please let me know. I love and miss these guys... The songs: Dead Water Bunny - No Food - Perforated Condom - 
Richard Paddon 
I remember the flatbed gig, they drove around Alki. Tymber is my cousin, and her Dad's friend was behind them in his Cadilac Convertible. We saw them play last year or so at the Sunset Tavern, great show. Tymber is one helluva drummer. Funny story, some many years ago, my brother is hanging with his buddy David ( a brother, African-American, black guy......) and they are in my brother's car listening to some music, which David is getting into it, he had pulled a disc out from a case, and just put it into the player. Some time later, David had seen posters all over Seattle about Slamm Suzzane playing downtown....Doc Maynard's maybe. So, he hounds my brother to go see them play. Upon arrival, and making their way into the club, they have to take a seat way in back, upstairs. The band comes out, is playing, and David looks to my brother and ask...."who the F_ck is this, and what in the F_ck are they playing, and who in the**(&^% is that chick with the big hair playing the drums?" to which my brother tells him...hey that's my cousin, and she's the drummer for Slam Suzzanne....the band you wanted to see. David tries to explain the songs he heard in the car and my brother realizes that David had pulled Slam Suzzanne's disc out of a Red Hot Chilli Peppers case. David was the only brother in the I wish I was there to see his face. 
Colin Lundgren
Looking to find any sort of Tape or maybe remaster'd to cd? 
Richard Paddon

Keep an eye out, they played a few shows last year [2009]. Tymber is in a band in the Bay area....Cover Girlz
'via Blog this'
Slam Suzzanne - YouTube:

Hey I had a cd, because it was given to me by cousin....Tymber !
Blitnekoff 1 year ago
i saw this band for the first time in tri-shities and at indian summer i was the mixican kid who stole the mic on "i can't ride my staeboard" good fuckin times!!!!
rich420509 2 years ago
Ahh...I remember hearing this song in highschool. Good times!
Didn't some of these guys form a surf band called the Manatees?

dannyjingu 2 years ago
Glad to see they are still around. Last show I saw was at the RockCandy(Seattle) the night Tymber was struck by a drunk driver. Sometime in the late 90's.
teufeldritch 2 years ago
I was hanging out with Johnny once when he said he'd rather jerk off than fuck a stripper. Problem was, he said it to my friend--who was married to one.
weblogalias 3 years ago
'via Blog this'
These videos are from the 2009 show mentioned above. Looks like some more punks are getting to sleep at a reasonable hour! Good for them. PS: Bald in a suit is the only way to go these days for aging punks.

And, finally, links to some songs!  

These lead to the MySpace profile:

They are on Facebook now, too:

Perforated condom

Perforated condom 

I like to say Fuck!

I like to say Fuck! 




No food
No food

Hell Night Tour
Hell Night Tour


Meat for Breakfast
Meat for Breakfast

Friday, October 14, 2011

What I Am Listening To Now: "Dust and Heat" by Talkdemonic

What I Am Listening To Now: "Defailir" by Bllix

Slow and mellow for bed time...
bllix's official profile including the latest music, albums, songs, music videos and more updates.

bllix Music, Lyrics, Songs, and Videos by bllix at ReverbNation

What I Am Listening To Now: "Somethin 'bout nothin" by Growler

Another great local find today...

What I Am Listening To Now: "Vampira" by The Misfits

As Chad wrote on Facebook, "Classic Misfits." Changing up the pace from the previous post, but I like this.

What I Am Listening To Now: "Murder of Crows" & "Exist" by Paisley Rose

Murder of Crows (HD) from Paisley Rose on Vimeo.

What I Am Listening To Now: "Irresistible Force" & "Nothing's Shocking" by Jane's Addiction

Not sure what I think about the new track. Heard it on the radio a couple times, then again today here. Not quite the same as the old, old stuff. I still think Nothing's Shocking is one of the great albums of all time.

Facebook Bans Jane's Addiction Album Cover 'Nothing's Shocking' | Gigwise
Facebook has banned Jane's Addiction's album cover for 'Nothing's Shocking' from appearing on the social-networking website.

The cover was posted on the band's offical page as part of a series of classic images from the band's back catalogue.

The band posted the image with the message: “In 1988, nine of the 11 leading record chains refused to carry Nothing's Shocking because of its cover.”
Facebook later removed the picture, which features the image of two fully naked women, citing a violation of its Terms of Use.
'via Blog this'
At least they can still play it well enough...

What I Am LIstening To Now: "The Special" by dropa

These guys are out of Portland. Just found them this morning. Very good.


Thursday, October 13, 2011

What I Am Listening To Now: "Black Dress" by o'death

I can't get enough of these guys today, but now it is time to walk away, to run an errand, and to accomplish a few other things...

MissRepresentation Trailer: A great video on media portrayals of women in America

Cross-posted from Democracy in Distress:

The trailer for this movie touches on so many great issues, but this is one of the more shocking tid-bits: "...Cuba, China, Iraq, and Afghanistan have more women in government than the United States of America..."

Miss Representation 8 min. Trailer 8/23/11 from Miss Representation on Vimeo.


What I Am Listening To Now: "Down To Rest" by o'death

Just saw that these guys are playing with Murder By Death, one of my favorites, and I checked them out.  I REALLY, REALLY like them.  A good find this morning.

What I Am Listening to Now: "Me and Bobby McGee" by Janis Joplin

Thanks to Jeannie W. on the Facebook.  This is perfect for my mood this morning!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Oh, my... This made me smile... The Muppets to cover Nirvana's 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' | News | NME.COM

In the picture NME used, the boys look like Muppets.

The Muppets to cover Nirvana's 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' | News | NME.COM:

The Muppets Barbershop Quartet will provide their own take on the seminal grunge anthem - which was originally released as a single in 1991 - for their big-screen flick The Muppets, which is set to come out in the UK next February. The soundtrack will also include a cover of Cee Lo Green's Number One hit 'Forget You'.

'via Blog this'

What I Am Listening To Now: "I Led Three Lives" by Grails

Photo of the Day by the King of Spamalot & "Mountain Cats" by Talkdemonic

From 000-FB Photo of the Day

Photo of the Day, October 12, 2011. Taken October 17, 2009. Butte Creek Scout Ranch. Near Scotts Mill, Oregon. October 17, 2009.

View this photo and buy prints on deviantART. 

 I am the King of Spamalot.  I just had an email go out through ReverbNation to about 56 people I know about being a part of a mailing list I am putting together (though will probably never use). I didn't think much of it, since it is to people I know.

A few minutes later, though, I realized that my name might not be on it anywhere, just Retrovirus Lab. So yeah, that was me. Let's see if I just got myself kicked off that service!

On top of it, as I am connecting with some other groups through these sites, my social networks are getting pretty jammed up with notices. I am trying to keep them on the Retrovirus Lab page, not on my regular Facebook page, but they tend to go their first before I can get them off. Only leaving the really good ones up there.

Good ones like these folks below. Here is a song, just for the hell of it... Discovered them on my travels through the interwebs today... Probably won't get to a picture today, either. So I threw one up at the top of this post and am calling it the Photo of the Day.

Meanwhile, everyone was home sick today. Everyone, but me, is feeling better now. Blah. Maybe that can be my excuse...

Cross posting this everywhere...


What I Am Listening To Now: "Bad As Me" by Tom Waits

A new Tom Waits song...  Right on.  New album coming out soon, too.

  Tom Waits - Bad As Me by antirecords

Retrovirus Lab: A Brief History

So, I suppose the first question, one that I've been asked recently, is this: Am I getting the band back together?  This was asked not so much in the literal sense, as in actually tracking down former band members from all over the country and actually playing together again, but in the figurative sense...  Am I really looking at diving back into this music thing?

Well, for now, the answer is no.  Beyond, maybe, when I have some time, if I ever have any time, remixing some of the material from 2008 and, an even bigger maybe, recording some mostly spoken word solo type of stuff even further down the road, I cannot really see getting too much back into it at this point in my life.  Hell, I can barely keep up with the current elements of my life, let alone trying to throw a band into the mix.

However, it is something I would like to do later on.  Someday...  maybe.

So, what is going on with all these band sites and what not?  Just sticking my toe in the door, keeping the name preserved, and having the online infrastructure in place in case I do decide to throw in again.

But, for now, this is a blog about music, not about a band.  And that is what I am happy with right now.

Here is some old profile information on Retrovirus Lab:

Retrovirus Lab Resurrection? Part One: A history of Seattle band inbreeding (2008)

So the history works like this… Once upon a time there was a fun little city called Seattle...

First I was in a basement band called Taramarteau (the spelling may not be correct here, but I do not think it matters much). One of the songs I am working on now, "Filler," actually dates back to this old band in 1992. This band never played anywhere but the basement, but it was my first time out as a singer, and I am glad that there is no surviving evidence from this warm up period.

Mary the bass player and I fled the suck and started a new band, which was Koan. Musicians were wanted in The Stranger. Koan went through two incarnations, the first with Mary, Jason Roberts, Brad Haug (who was one of the founding members of Faith & Disease), his buddy Andy, and a cute redhead whose name I cannot remember right now on keyboards. There was drama. One show was played at the Rendezvous, I believe, rapidly followed by more drama and the collapse of the band.

Jason and I kept the name, added his friend J. D. Jarmer, and eventually Ryan Kingsbury on drums, with a number of other musicians rolling in and out here and there, live and in the studio. "C Chaos" comes from this period, based on a song originally titled "Squirting Chaos," as does "Four Minute Barrier," "It Could Really Be Murder," "Thresholds," and "My Soul Is Free." Essentially, these are covers of old Koan songs. I am reclaiming them for this new project since I wrote the lyrics and had the lead vocal duties on these songs.

This incarnation of Koan lasted for a while, put out a demo tape, kroatoan, played quite a few shows at places such as the Off Ramp and, of course, the Lake Union Pub. We lived at the Jam Box rehearsal studios, and then up near Northgate in a garage. Jason and J.D. were students in Shoreline's audio engineering program (as was I, for a couple of quarters), so we parked up in the college's 16 track analog studio for weekends at a time. We were briefly popular in Salt Lake City due to the strategic location of a stack of band stickers that used The Sisters of Mercy font, and due to the fact that no one in SLC had ever heard our music… We were a part of the NW Goth Coalition for a while, even though we were not really a Goth band, and we also hung out with a lot of the guys playing in bands in the NW Industrial Coalition. Cleopatra signed almost all of those guys.

Eventually, everything got weird (I'll take quite a bit of the responsibility for this), and we broke up. During the break up, live in the middle of a set at the Lake Union Pub, I was thrown out the back door of the establishment and told to never return. It was quite a remarkable feat, getting 86ed from this old punk dive, one that I am strangely proud of. This was 1994.

Two weeks later, the original Retrovirus Lab made its debut back at the Lake Union Pub. Mike Tune on bass, Ryan Kingsbury on drums, Cliff Braten on guitar, and I was handling the vocals and playing quite a bit of sax.

Back at the Jambox, a rehearsal space was shared for a few weeks with The Reactors, but due to wide spread band poverty, Retrovirus Lab only had about three or four rehearsals there before we became homeless. Still, with three or four solid songs and the loose seeds of a few more that were used as the foundation for some long improvisational jams, we boldly set forth once more into the Seattle music scene.

That first show at the Lake Union, two weeks after I was catching air out the back door, had the same bartender loading us up with free beer at closing time and going off on how we were the best fuckin' band to play that shithole in a long time. We were on to something. The pub pretty much became our rehearsal space and we played there every week or two for the next year, as well as a number of other shows around the Seattle club scene.

Current Artist Bio (2011)

Retrovirus Lab, in its first incarnation, was a live band playing small clubs in Seattle in the mid-1990s. The group was a loose assortment of musicians playing a heavily improvisational style of music influenced by the members’ punk, industrial, metal, and jazz roots. The primary line up consisted of A.F. Litt on lead vocals and alto sax, Cliff Braten on guitar, Mike Tune on bass, and Ryan Kingsbury on percussion.

In 2008, A. F. Litt revived the name Retrovirus Lab for a solo project that resulted in a number of songs being recorded in his living room. This material consisted of reworked Retrovirus Lab songs from the 1990s, reworked songs from an earlier band of his, featuring several Retrovirus Lab members, called Koan, and several new songs.

While currently on hiatus, Litt is planning on remixing much of the 2008 material for release late in 2011 or early 2012 and recording new material for release sometime in 2012.

What It Was Like (Living Room Rough Mixes) by Retrovirus Lab on Soundcloud & ReverbNation

All right... Here is some music, rough and ugly. See the bio information above... It is not for everyone. It might even be just for me. But I like it for what it is, scraping off fifteen years of rust and playing with some clunky new, cheap toys back in 2007 and 2008.

Thresholds by retroviruslab

Sunday, October 9, 2011

What I Am Listening To Now: "Everywhen" by Massive Attack

Been listening to it way, way, too much today putting this together. I loved it when I started, pretty sick of it right now, but hopefully the video is somewhat worth it.