The Crash and Ride Playlist for July 27th, 2019

This week’s interview is with Mike Dickinson of Austin-based Chicken Ranch Records. Mike has been a huge supporter of independent rock for many years, including my own bands Five Eight and Pinky Doodle Poodle. I made this week’s playlist using only Chicken Ranch Records releases!

1. “The Ballad of Bones and Blood” – Mr Lewis and the Funeral 5:  Five Eight and Pinky Doodle Poodle shared the bill with these guys this year at SXSW, and they never fail to deliver. Just an outstanding band, they sound like music from a haunted jukebox in a diner filled with the souls of pickpockets and gamblers, frozen in purgatory, where the year will always be 1961.

2. “GO PZ GO” – Peelander Z: This song is like twenty seconds long, but I get pumped every time I hear it, so I decided to use it as an intro to…

3. “Bike Bike Bike” – Peelander Z: Japanese punk party rockers Peelander Z make me realize that there are dirty Ramones alleys and surf safaris in Tokyo, too. If you don’t have fun at a Peelander Z show, there’s a podcast for depressed musicians you need to check out….

4. “Voice of Memphis” – Negro Terror: Memphis’ all-black punk band, Negro Terror, was just starting to break out when their lead singer and guiding spirit Omar Higgins died suddenly from a totally treatable and unfortunate illness. They are brash, noisy, and angry like every great hardcore band from the last century, and they were poised to do great things. Rest in power, Omar.

5. “Matches” – The Waymores: The Waymore feel to me a little like a significantly more authentic version of The Knitters, the Americana side-project of LA punk godparents, X. This song shows their deeply insightful take on the kind of classic hard-luck redneck anthem that serves to elegize the misanthropes and outcasts who always have the barstool closest to the side door or who get a cell all to themselves upstate.

6. “Hurt You” – Five Eight: From the remastered release of Weirdo, our ill-fated final record for Sky Records back in the ’90s, this is the song we joked as the “feel-bad hit of the summer.” With acoustic bass played by my then-roommate Dave Domizi, this colossal downer of a tune is still kind of my favorite song from that album.

7. “Refinery Town” – Chris Canterbury: I saw Chris play a solo set at the Chicken Ranch showcase last spring at SXSW, and he absolutely silenced a room full of people who were waiting to jump around and shout along with Peelander Z. People are reverent in the presence of the truth, and Chris brings it. I felt honored to be there. I hope he asks me to play some shows with him some time.

8. “Hoy Hoy” – Flat Duo Jets: Mike mentioned in the interview that he always wanted to find a way to work with Flat Duo Jets, and he did put out a record for them a few years ago. Dexter Romwebber is one of the great unsung legends of indie rock in the South, and I’ve never seen them turn in a bad show. Five Eight once lived in the house under which Dexter is seen sleeping in the ‘Athens GA Inside Out” film. It was a lot smaller town, then. Hoy, hoy indeed.

9. “Little One” – Komorebi: Komorebi is trip hop from New Delhi. Everything she does is amazing, and I was fortunate enough to play drums for her when her drummer was unable to get a visa to play SXSW last year. We had one rehearsal, and we bonded over how great her work is. I’m hoping to convince friends at Moog Fest to bring her over next year. Check out the video for this tune in the show notes for Episode 21. I have soem unreleased stuff that would also blow your mind.

10. “Hey Little Birdie” – Starlings, TN: Sadly, Starlings TN’s last show was a couple of years ago, now, but I always loved seeing them at the Chicken Ranch shows. Harmonies, string band tunes, murder ballads, they had it all. I hate that they’re no longer together.

11. “What’s Your Matter” – Thee Idylls: I love the intense focus on melodies in this band. They’ve been described as garage rock, with a strong streak of southern indie kudzu mysticism, which seems about right to me. This is from the EP they released with Chicken Ranch, and I like how rowdy it is.