(above : Mordecai, performing for no busfare whatsoever)
The venerable W. Mass (founded) trio Dinosaur (or, as neophytes, poseurs and the litigation-mindful prefer, Dinosaur Jr.) are playing a series of shows at Manhattan’s Bowery Ballroom to mark the 30th anniversary of their self-titled debut album. Of said LP, the New Yorker’s Matthew Trammel (“Once Removed :The members of Dinosaur Jr. find essential noise in the space between them”) writes the album “was released in 1985 to almost no fanfare.”
Look, I’ll be the first to admit that Homestead Records’ social media campaign for this masterpiece was sorely lacking. As was the label’s ability to garner a Pitchfork “Best New Music” nod, an “All Songs Considered” premiere or even a booking on the James Corden show. That none of the above actually existed at the time is only as relevant as you want it to be.
It would be the height of exaggeration to claim ‘Dinosaur”s hatching (sorry) was greeted with anything approaching a media frenzy, but that was rarely true of anything worth giving a fuck about in those days. What can be disputed, however, is the notion that enthusiastic ‘zine coverage, college radio crackpot evangelism and loud, excessive word-of-mouth from actual record buyers and fellow musicians adds up to well, nothing worth remembering. You’ve heard of historical revisionism? This is called pressing the history eraser button.
That the types of grass roots support Dinosaur enjoyed prior to their ascent up the SST and MTV ladders aren’t nearly as prevalent in 2015 doesn’t mean they were unimportant then or now. Most of the stuff J, Lou & Murph cut their teeth on prior to 1985 was also released to relatively little fanfare at one time or another, but none of it came outta nowhere.
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In the wake of last week’s entry, “Reports Of My Stopping Chris Stigliano From Becoming Lewis Largent Aren’t Merely Exaggerated, They’re Total Bullshit”, noted fantasist-turned-blogger Chris Stigliano took to the extremely modern Blogger platform to pen a lengthy rebuttal that was published earlier today. Once again, there is no one better qualified to chronicle the many achievements of Chris Stigliano quite like Chris Stigliano. However, putting healthy (?) differences of opinion aside, I will offer a handful of responses simply because if someone runs around the internet with a giant “KICK ME” sign on his or her back, it’s rude not to oblige, right?
“I know how HUMBLE you are but it ain’t no big MYSTERY why the sales of my mag took a drop right when you, a pretty powerful cog in the ’80s underground machine (you don’t have to be so modest about the power you wielded!), started up your li’l infantile rants against me and my (ahem!) writing abilities and tastes! Ain’t no mere coincidence like you say, chum. Of course you were one who at first praised the mag tellin’ your readership about how you first read about the Silver Apples in issue #6 after hearing ’em on the radio wonderin’ who they were (and writing me some downright pleasant notes as well!) before turning on me based on certain patches of information I’ve put together from different sources that still make little if any sense (though you’ll come up with a few nice li’l reasons as to why). Sheesh, give yourself a little credit for being a shifty human being now, willya???”
OK. Unattributed sources Stigliano either can’t name or can’t remember claim I “turned on” him, at which point his sales / rep / etc. went into the dumper (with sanity soon to follow). This seems more than a little hysterical — a negative note or several from a zine with sales no greater than his own torpedoed a rise to (again) the top? The middle? If anyone decided to cease purchasing, reviewing or distributing Chris’ publication, I am certain they did so with no urging from me.
I am surprised how you got that notion that a “cabal” of Pee-Cee “Thought Police” has been created to lead to my very downfall and loss of riches and all that. Must be my suspicious mind looking for bigshot En Why rockcrit/underground suckerfish hiding under the bed again! You wouldn’t know, but my slow if ever-coagulating move towards the (ahem) “right” didn’t really come to total fruition until the v. late-eighties at which time the disturbing if not disgusting actions of certain people you love (those who can easily have their core beliefs easily shred by observers greater than myself, and for that matter have) really became too much for this straight arrow to take. And frankly, I still don’t know who was worse, the rampaging fags, feminist blowhards, NEA money grubbing trash artists or the limo lib lackeys (a category in which you more or less fit in) who were defending it all. But I keep forgetting—small city suburban hourly wage workers who are anywhere to the right of Stalin have no rights. The destructive actions of these fine upstanding citizens made me an even straighter soul so maybe I do have you to thank for my transformation, at least in part.
I think I owe Chris an apology for last week’s comparison to Dino Costa. Without question, he was there first!
Sheesh, where in the world did I wish cancer upon you? Death sure…I mean I sure could use a laugh, can’t we ALL??? But then again for you an agonizing death would undoubtedly be caused by discovering a 10% drop in your stock portfolio!
On the 29th of August, Stigliano wrote (in reference to Norton Records’ Billy Miller), “Multpile Myeloma and diabetes ain’t exactly fun things that liven up your life to its fullest potential (and sheesh, with my recent coming in contact with people who are either undergoing cancer treatments or are so far beyond it [or dead for that case] it seems like the malady is growing ‘stead of coming to a grind like I’m sure we all hoped it would have at this stage in time) but really, in all honesty (remember that word?) Billy is not the kinda guy who deserves this sorta fate. Cosloy and (Patrick) Amory definitely do, as do Jay Hinman, David Lang and all of those jerks who threw their lot in with them ‘stead of me.”
I do realize that when you’re in the habit of wishing cancer and/or death upon persons who’ve the temerity to publicliy disagree with you, it’s difficult to keep track of the names and dates. And there’s another difference between me and Stig ; I wouldn’t wish Alzheimer’s on my worst enemy (and he’s not even in the top 20).
But hey, what’s a couple of months? I’m a-ok with cancer and/or death being wished upon me because Chris can close his eyelids and pray to cancer/death fairies and it still makes no difference. We’re all gonna die. But if you’re the sort who wishes painful death and/or terminal disease upon enemies real or imagined, fucking own it, man.
I also remember you pullin’ the ol’ ageism game on me…y’know, you’re so young and I’m so old as a dyslexic Paul Anka mighta sang it. Yeah, I should be writin’ my personal memoirs regarding the signing of the Magna Carta and all ‘stead of about rock ‘n roll but anyway, how does it feel to be among the geriatric now, Cos?
Getting old has perks! If I show up late for all ages shows, I usually get in free because they think I’m there to pick up my kids. If I fake a heart attack, I probably don’t have to carry my own gear to the car (granted, I can’t pull that one more than once a year). Either way, I am pretty certain that were Stiglino not hamstrung by the aforementioned Thought Cops…he’d still be a victim of ageism. And that’s unconscionable. There’s loads of elderly people making valuable contributions in this wonderful world and most of them do not deserve to be tarred by association with a guy who declares his opposition to “rampaging fags”.
(EDITOR’S NOTE : Not quite sure how this happened, but the following post was supposed to have been published on December 22, 2013. Though it’s hardly timely — 50 Cent’s celebrated appearances at Citi Field having taken place some time ago — there’s no possible way I could resist the opportunity to run the photo of Jay Horowitz shown below, no matter how old it may be – GC)
The scribe in question is unsurprisingly, the New York Post’s hip-hop-phboic sports media critic, Phil Mushnick, who expresses dismay the New York Mets have tapped 50 Cent to perform a June postgame concert at Citi Field. Mushnick, who had nothing negative to say when the Mets invited such (aesthetic) criminals as Third Eye Blind to spark a dangerous stampede to the 7 train, takes a dim view of the club’s association with the MC, sneering, “being financially partnered with Ponzi legend Bernie Madoff, 1-800 flower-power ad-scam king Jim McCann, the fined folks at Amway, and manipulative hedge-hog Steve Cohen isn’t sleazy enough,”.
Buyer beware. At least when the Nets ran a “Guns For Tickets” promotion they requested the owners first empty the clips — that slug in the chamber, too. 50 Cent — that’s “Mr. Cent” to the New York Times — puts the rap sheet in rap. And what he raps for a living is beyond both the pale and the pail. As the Mets’ first manager, Casey Stengel, urged, “You can look it up.” It doesn’t matter that Cent was arrested, again — then copped a plea to avoid another felony — just this year, this time for assaulting the mother of one of his children. Nope, the Mets are pitching this warm, cuddly angle: The Mets and Fiddy are homeboys, both from Queens! Hey, so is the Queensboro Correctional Facility! Why don’t the Mets send over a few buses, fill them with inmates and take them out to the ball game — perhaps Banner Day. Maybe that’s why the cons on the top floors have been secretly collecting bed sheets. Perhaps, too, the Mets can conduct a rap-along — follow the bouncing stray bullet! — posting Fiddy’s lyrics on the big scoreboard.