Baby Island: What Are You Listening To?
Baby Island may sound like some kind of diabolical reality show (or a book, I guess), but it’s actually a relatively new band made up of members of the Format and LAKE. They recently released their first album on Hello Records titled Break the Lease, and, to celebrate, bassist-vocalist Elijah Moore put together the following playlist of tracks that have been stuck in their heads of late.
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Cowboy Junkies, “Me and the Devil”
Recorded in their rehearsal space with one microphone. This album really gives you the sense of listening in on a great band practice.
The Cleaners from Venus, “Julie Profumo”
I love the fluffy lo-fi sound of these home-recorded Cleaners from Venus records.
There are so many treasures to discover when you start digging around in Martin Newell’s discography.
Hungry Cloud Darkening, “I am Seen”
Listen to the ‘count in’ at the top of the track and the drums throughout. They have been slowed way down. It gives them a unique, clunky and plodding feel. This song is beautiful, creepy and simple.
NRBQ, “Feel You Around Me”
Probably the song we’ve listened to most at band practices. NRBQ are a criminally overlooked band, but that seems to be slowly changing; I saw an NRBQ bumpersticker recently while driving on Interstate 5! Joey Spampinato is probably my favorite bass player; his pick style is so grooving and hoppy.
Beat Happening, “Our Secret”
This song was (I think) the first Beat Happening song ever recorded. Greg Sage from the Wipers came to Olympia and met the band at the Evergreen State College and recorded four songs and then left. The drum sound is one of my favorites ever (someone has to make a loop of it!). This is my favorite Beat Happening song. You can imagine a very different early ’80s then what immediately comes to mind while listening to this album.
Jib Kidder, “Face of Meat”
Sean Schuster-Craig is one my my favorite current media makers. His collaged YouTube videos, music and lyrics mirror the living world in a revealing way. This song reminds me of the heavy sections in ‘In the Light’ by Led Zeppelin with its fuzzy chromatic guitar riff.
Die Doraus & Die Marinas, “Einkauf”
This is a fantastic album, not sure what the song is about, but the sleeve has drawings of penises and other things on it. Great bass line and lazy/confident youthful vocals.
John Cale, “Hanky Panky Nohow”
My wife (and part-time band member) Ashley suggested we cover this song and I can totally picture it. This is a perfect album. Favorite lyric: ‘Nothing frightens me more than religion at my door.’
Fleetwood Mac, “I Know I’m Not Wrong”
A deep cut from Tusk. This is one of our favorite songs to cover at shows. It sounds and feels like it was recorded and written in the course of an hour (yet it will live forever).
The Brotherhood of the Lizards, “Market Day”
Here’s another song by Martin Newell of the Cleaners from Venus. What a wonderful world he’s created for us. This song has a fantastic melody and chord progression. Love the chorus-y guitars and drum machine mixed with the folky mandolin.
Chris Cohen, “Yesterday’s on My Mind”
I really enjoy the unadorned nature of this recording. The hard panned acoustic and electric guitars, and the cracking, reliable drum part. The last tom hit at the retard for the very end of the song sounds very, very cool and weird. This song actually really reminds me of the Cleaners from Venus.
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