Cleaners From Venus Fridays!

March 12, 2010

Heeeeeeyyy, I Have Great News!

So, to let you in on a little secret, by far and away the most popular post ever seen on this here rinky dink blug was on the two albums by the Cleaners From Venus. It really wasn’t one of my more well written posts, (and maybe this one is sliding towards the same) which is a shame for how many people have read it but dem’s da breaks and now I’m proud to announce soon to be available 5+ more albums for download right here at thee Biannual Haircut and that gives me 5+ times to come up with a better title and not take cheap shots at Ariel Pink! The deal here is every Friday, till i fuck up or run out of stuff, i’ll put up a new Cleaners From Venus LP.

The craziest thing is how far and wide those previously posted albums spread on the internet and even seem to have lead to some industrious All Stars, from pretty near where i’m from, reissuing Midnight Cleaners, Under Wartime Conditions and In The Golden Autumn on snazzy Cassette!

So, anyways and first off, my buddy Andy who does this great pictureblog, is the one responsible for all these new albums, so visit his site and thank him kindly! Today, to even out the inevitable excitement frenzy, i’m gonna offer up a Cleaners album that was previously available on Andy’s old blog, but in a lower sound quality and only broken up into two cassette sides, rather than track by track. This one today is the improved experience!

I’ll start off writing that Midnight Cleaners is the best Cleaners album i’ve heard. In fact it’s one of the best DIY/ outsider/ pop/ albums i’ve ever heard. As good as Phonography and chasing after Like Flies On Sherbert. Out of the nine songs on here there are seven perfect pop gems, one wacked out dub goof and one spaced sound collage studio jerk off which all work perfectly together. Don’t miss this one if you haven’t heard it yet.

Download: The Cleaners From Venus – Midnight Cleaners

and visit Martin’s website: and tell him he’s a genius and it’s a crime these sounds aren’t available on record.

Sproton “Space is too far so we’ll stay on Earth” Layer

March 10, 2010

Sproton Layer were a High School garage band from Michigan that recorded one LP and 45 in 1969, what makes them special is their hip pedigree and much more importantly their spaced out triumphant Trumpet punk tunes. Hearing the songs and following the members later paths doesn’t make thems as interesting it would be if they were a bunch of nobodies who went on to be accountants or deceased, but that’s a stupid and nerdy thing to get caught up on anyway. So who was in the band? Well Roger Miller of Mission Of Burma and his lil’ bro’s Ben and Laurence who went on to be in Destroy All Monsters. I guess they described their sound as “Syd Barrett fronting Cream.” While i’m only a fan of half that equation, i’m a full supporter of Sproton Layer. True, there may be some definite Barrett/ Floyd loving going on, but the distant and vague focus of vocals seems to be a classic swing and miss for the best results. The aforementioned Trumpet is one of my favorite aspects of their tunes, really sounding perfectly peculiar and off putting in an engaging and (once again) triumphant way. The structure of the songs is pretty anti-pop and avant-prog brainiac business which by my interpretation means they were on their way to totally sucking if they were able to hone their “sound” any further. Phew, thanks for calling that one quits and moving on boys.

Listen to a sample HERE

Download: With Magnetic Fields Disrupted by Sproton Layer

Please, Just Leave Me Here

March 9, 2010

As is quite common with any music dweeber, I often look back on different parts of history and rather than wishing to travel back in time to see some truly pivotal moment in a cultural movement or an unspeakably inspirational liberation of a war torn city, i dream about going back and seeing bands like Antena play a show to ten people on a Thursday night at The Hacienda. Pretty thrilling, eh? Get a grip, eh? You’re boring, huh? Well even though i’m mostly exaggerating this whole thing it’s not that far from the truth and good ol’ Antena definitely probably had many nights like the one vaguely described above. They put out their first few records in the early eighties on a limp Factory records off shoot label and never did much more until the lead singer went solo and boring. I will say, Antena’s music definitely hits at the fringe of my taste range, and maybe that’s what i like about it. Some songs are incredibly beautiful and weird and scandalously seductive while others are so god damned smooth part of my brain is groovin’ like a gross white dude in a baggy button up and the other half is trying to beat that half up but eventually get’s a mai tai and takes a nap in a hammock. By the end of the album everyone is happy and meellllloooowwww.

So what does it sound like?? Well if you can imagine a tasteful mix of Young Marble Giants and Rita Lee’s Os Mutantes tunes than, you’re in and stoked. If this isn’t your thing or i hooked you and yet another over hyped and obscure for a reason “lost” treasure than, I don’t fault you. I just think you should take a warm place vacation and listen to this at sunset.

Download: Camino Del Sol by Antena

Surely, Keith, You Jest!

March 8, 2010

“No it is true, Anita, there shall be many new Biannual Hairtrim posts on the horizon. I dare count twenty odd albums in the queue”

“Keith, you rascal, you always know just what to say…”

Exercising Executive Editing

December 16, 2009

Sooooo, as endless as the well for great garage-psych-pop bands may often seem it is almost guaranteed that a retrospective of their recordings is going to be bogged down with covers, demos and weak weak honkey r&b jive to work as completest padding again the real savory stuff that made So and The Wyld So & So’s so interesting in the fyrst place. So what i have to offer today is personally edited down albums from two real riteous groups of varying obscurity with what i consider to be the essential parts for you to hear. I’m tired of wasting hard drive space being a completest, so if you feel the same, here’s our time to rejoice.

First is Powder from San Jose, who were real big fans of the Who, and Action types doing that freakbeat mod stuff. Sounds kinda like a dull derivative, i know but man, Powder had some truly amazing songs that could have easily been big hits if put in the right hands. They also had a slight downer and moody vibe that added its own season to the soup. Powder’s records are also real rare but they just got a boot/reissue treatment recently so i highly recommend tracking that down before it’s lost to depths of ebay.

Download : Powder – Biff! Bang! Powder!

The Eyes were immortalized on the nuggets 2 comp with their smash hit “I’m Rowed Out”, and while it was a blatant swipe from the Who’s “Can’t Explain” (Thanks J!) it pounds the Who’s original into the ground. Sorry Pete. Luckily for the world they had more tricks up their sleeve and wrote a handful more smashes before turning out a super limp dick album of stones covers and changing their name to The Pupils. I saw the record once and wanted to smash it, what a greedy, dumb and boring decision for a band to quit writing rad songs to be a sad tribute band. Tribute bands are for people without talent, everybody!

Download : The Eyes – The Arrival of The Eyes

Never Take Reality Over a Dream

December 13, 2009

Toot Toot! Boring List, Dead Ahead!

December 10, 2009

favs of the year…

1. HunchesExit Dreams

I’ve always been a huge Hunches fan and I really couldn’t have asked for much more in a swan song. This record is unmatched in its ability to mix ferocity, brains and creativity. Listen to it with some good headphones to fully appreciate the amount of craft and ingenuity that went into this record. I wish there was a quadraphonic version. Exit Dreams should make boring “lo-fi” bands like No Age obsolete.

2. Eat SkullWild & Inside

The leap from Sick To Death to this was pretty crazy. This album runs a perfect gamut from big giant pop songs to moody introvert downers all perfectly sequenced for seemless enjoyment. The cool thing is how immediate a lot of the album was and how many layers could be found after more listens. I can’t believe two of my favorite records of the year came from Portland.

2. Fresh & OnlysGrey Eyed Girls

Great dudes, killer band, amazing album. The pop record of the year. Being the worlds most productive band, it’s not too surprising they were able to cull together such a wonderful group of songs, but damn if it doesn’t still make for an exciting and record. Grey Eyed Girls plays like a singles comp with a constant slew of A sides barreling at you. It all fits together fine but many songs have their own feel to them and stand out in their own individual ways which makes the album very adaptable to whatever mood you’re in. Thanks for being so accommodating fellas.

4. Kurt VileConstant Hit Maker/ God is Saying This To You/ Hunchback E.P/ Childish Prodigy

The most popular man on the internet after that WaAaAaAaAaAaAwes fellow, and certainly the more deserving of the time and energy. Childish Prodigy didn’t blow me away liked i hoped it would but it was still great and plenty ambitious. He might not ever be able to top “Freeway”, and that’s ok. I thought the Hunchback E.P. was a real dominator and God Is Saying This To You has a special place in my heart too. Kurt rules, thank goodness someone is throwing gobs of money at him.

5. Blues ControlLocal Flavour

The first song on the album sounds like Kraftwerk covering Hawkwind! I didn’t think that was too possible either, but then it moves on to some real dreamy drone piece and back for a track that sounds like Fela Kuti conducting Joe Meeks electronic Arkestra on Jupiter. Errr, something like that. I’m a big fan of this record, you should be as well.

Honorable Mentions: Grass Widow – S/T, HunchesHome Alone 5, GangliansMonster Head Room, Mantles – S/T, Sonny & The SunsetsTomorrow Is Alright, Tim CohenThe Two Sides of Tim Cohen

Killer Singles – Grass Widow – Lulu’s Lips 12″, Bitters – Warrior 12″, Little Claw – Race To The Bottom, El jesus De Magico – Unclean Ghost, Blues Control – Paul’s Winter Solstice, Nodzzz – True to Life, Rough Kids – Why So Serious?, Mantles – Don’t Lie, R. Stevie Moore – U R True, Real Estate – Fake Blues, Surf City -S/T E.P, Sic Alps – L Mansion, Wounded Lion – Friendly?

2009 was a weird year, but to the best of my recollection i had a good time. It was certainly more exciting than other years i’ve had with lots of good ups and draggin downs, which is always a positive sign if you ask me. Those type of things mean you’re going for it, and hopefully coming out on top and if not at least you’re trying. Here’s to a productive 2010. Thanks for reading this thing.

It’s getting cold and that’s ok

November 20, 2009

Jesus is obviously jealous of Brian

November 18, 2009

This is actually kinda hard to watch, lucky it’s sooooooooooo fucking rediculous the humor isn’t totally lost. Here’s a little bit of evil to cheer everyone up after watching the one above.

A Whiz Kid With His Head Full of Drugs

November 18, 2009

Van Dyke Parks’ first album is a wild and ambitious attempt at modernizing all kinds of classic American musical styles in the context of modern pop music, the perfect making for an utterly bizarre and beautiful album. Having grown up in the South, studying music in the North and then heading out West to make a career for himself he’s able to cover a lot of ground rather seamlessly but the goal of this album was not sheer regurgitation and faithful interpretation. This becomes clear within the first song were put his album title Song Cycle to quick work moving from style or genre every few minutes. The filter through which all this nostalgia is funneling through is a young genius with an appetite for psychedelics and plenty of resources from big contracts from big labels. The kid’s got the world at his finger tips and he’s going for the gusto. The album came out in 1968, not long after he ended his collaboration with our ol buddy Brian Wilson, with whom he was helping flesh out some ideas for Brian’s big opus, Smile. I’ve heard rumors Mr. Parks was not much help with Brian’s drug problem, they must have none the less ended on good terms as the reconnected to finish up Smile in 2004. Also, if you ever have the chance to jam this album while driving through some dusty southern california town, i recommend it highly.

Download: Van Dyke Parks – Song Cycle

Some sample lyrics as well…

What’s up Laurel canyon, hay.

What is up in Laurel Canyon the seat of the beat to greet and eat at the heart of their companion way.

That’s up Laurel Canyon.

And what is up the Canyon will even eventually come down.

also this silly video: