Shrimp Boat — Speckly
(AUM Fidelity AUM033, 1989/2005, CD)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2006-05-01Chicago’s Shrimp Boat exemplified a regional lo-fi approach which was championed by late 80s bands such as Camper Van Beethoven, REM and the Replacements. Where many alternative rock acts appeared on the surface to be light on technical proficiency they made up for it admirably in a friendly hodgepodge of ideas that varied basic song structures informed by an amused slacker demeanor. This is the first time the band’s first LP has been reissued on CD as part of Steven Jeorge’s archival series (which also resulted in the fine 4 CD boxed set Something Grand). Oddly enough the initial band line-up also included the band’s engineer as full member probably due to the basic live mix which captured them in a starkly honest light. Tracks such as “Seven Crows” corner much of the same type of zany fun CVB exuded on classic pieces such as “Take the Skinheads Bowling,” while others like “Melon Song” predate the minimalist Seattle grunge sound in a jangly fashion (with some choice backwards guitar loops in the backing track). Other more goofy songs such as “Lemmings Leap” veer toward similar instrumental ventures to Fred Frith’s pop exercises of the time. The quintet could serve up a slightly twisted folk ballad (“An Orchid is not a Rose”) or a country swing attempt (“Hyatt Ridge Circle Dance”) giving each equal priority and whimsy. Overall the band obviously had fun making the disc in the studio and it should be apparent to the indie crowd who flock to recordings such as this.
Related artist(s): Shrimp Boat
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more