Saturday, June 22, 2013

The World Doesn't Just Do Shit For Free

It's probably been a couple of years since I've walked around downtown New Haven now that Popeye's Garage is closed, even the place where I got a shitty burrito once is gone. I still love walking through the neighborhood around Chapel, Howe, and York Streets, except now when you look over Broadway towards where the cool record stores like Rhymes and Cutler's used to be, you'll see a J Crew, Urban Outfitters, and American Apparel all right next to each other, which is pretty lame. Anyway, the weather was so good last night that I almost felt like sitting outside in front of Elm Bar and having a beer, except that it wouldn't be very "edge" of me, so I walked to the pizzeria across the street and bought a bottle of lemonade instead. Plus all that walking around helps me keep an eye on my car and the sack of Old '97s CD's that I always keep in the back seat.

Stefan and Wes opened the show last night as "Estrogen Guys" (I swear, that's what was written on the chalkboard outside), playing about 5 or 6 new Estrogen Highs songs plus a couple of older ones sprinkled in. It was actually pretty amazing, I mean, I've seen Estrogen Highs as a full band so many times before that it was great to just hear the songs stripped-down (two acoustic guitars) and presented differently. For all the times I've seen Estrogen Highs and played their records, it never occurred to me before last night (since I was too busy thinking they sounded like Modern Lovers) that there's a healthy Kinks/Ray Davies streak running through the songs that Stefan writes, the way that Ray Davies would write character descriptions and so forth. Then afterwards it became a discussion as far as if the Kinks is even a worthwhile comparison to make in the first place, it doesn't really suggest anything since the Kinks are such a universal rock archetype anyway. That's what I do at night, stand outside bars discussing the Kinks, and keeping an eye on my Saturnine 60 CDs.

Medication were just mind-blowing again, they played at least three new songs ("Crash", "Make Your Own Way", and "Far" -- I stole the little piece of paper Mikey wrote on, that's how I know all this) and found that perfectly-place spot between tight and loose, meaning they played all the songs right but still didn't sound like they really gave that much of a fuck. Shitty bands care too much, that's their problem. I really like how John sometimes looks like he's about to fall off his stool when he plays, unlike those drummers who twirl their sticks and stuff. Then there's getting a coffee on the way home when it's midnight, which is always a pain in New Haven because there's only one Dunkin Donuts on 91 that's open late and they make you go through the drive-thru where you can't see what the donuts are and you have to explain to the guy how everyone else can go to hell and you don't want some bullshit frosted donut.

Medication -



Holly said...

Y'know, I should've guessed that Rhymes is no more..but shit. SHIT. First "cool" record store I ever went to. Loved the stairs. SHIT.
Best purchase = Husker Du Statues bootleg, I think.

And I think my very much older & very un-hip but very super sister braved Cutler's to buy me the Talking Heads Life During Wartime 7".


Brushback said...

I bought a ton of great stuff at Rhymes, back when Morrie was in The Not Quite. Yeah, it was one of those places where you sorta already had to know where it was, since the stairs weren't totally obvious from the street. I even remember when Cutler's was three times the size that it ended up being, and had a huge back room of all 45's with a bunch of little turntables you could play them on.

Not sure when Rhymes closed, probably before the '90s got going I'm guessing; I remember driving down to New Haven in like '94 just to go to Rhymes, having not been down there for years, and it wasn't there anymore. I kinda stood on the sidewalk, looking for the old doorway, and I couldn't believe it.