Here's My Uncle Reference
The holiday season is a slow time in the rock world. Fewer bands tour in order to avoid treacherous driving conditions on mountain passes (thank goodness), and local shows dwindle as people stay out of the cold to binge on turkey and pie. So what better time than now to reminisce about which albums I've been most thankful for as of late. A few of these records were released this year—others many years back—but all of them have been absolutely crucial to my soundtrack of 2K5.
Despite a mediocre performance at Neumo's last month, I stand by the belief that Against Me!'s latest release, Searching for a Former Clarity, contains some of the Gainesville, Florida, band's best material to date. Singer Tom Gabel opens up about his tumultuous relationship with the band's increasing popularity with great results.
I'm also exceedingly grateful that Harvey Danger decided to make their big comeback in 2005 by releasing their third full-length, Little by Little. I'm even more appreciative of the fact that they posted the entire record on their website (www.harveydanger.com), making it absolutely free for anyone who wants it. "Little Round Mirrors" has to be the best song the band has ever written, and I certainly don't mind when "Cream and Bastards Rise" gets stuck in my head for days at a time.
And even though it was released over two decades ago, a friend recently introduced me to the wildly underappreciated gem that is Dramarama's Cinéma Vérité. Of course their 1983 release features the infamous single "Anything, Anything (I'll Give You)," one of my favorite tracks of all times, but I had never heard the whole record until this year—and man, is it good. Apparently it's also way out of print, but you can try picking up a used copy—or searching hard enough on those sly music-sharing programs.
Mostly I'm thankful that the entire holiday season won't be too silent, as there's still plenty more to look forward to. Andrew W.K. is playing at UW on December 2 with Pretty Girls Make Graves and Schoolyard Heroes (tickets are on sale at www.ticketswest.com); and as I've said before, I can't wait to see Waxwing one last time before they officially disband (they're at Vera on December 16 and the Old Fire House December 17, both shows with Slender Means and Neon Blonde). Maybe I'll take one of my uncles to the show, though I think they're more the classic rock kinda guys. MEGAN SELING
Need more? You can hear my personal picks for the week on 107.7 The End every Friday at 8:30 a.m. during DJ No Name's The Morning Alternative.