Boardwalker – It’s a Bikini World
Daikaiju – Double Fist Attack
Jason Lee and the R.I.P Tones – Sucker Punch
The Tiki Tones – On the Scene
Les Spadassins – All Your Secrets
Said the Ripper – Slicked Down
The Tiki Men – Fireball
The Trashwomen – Bumble Bee
Surf Trio – Vibrosurf
Cocktail Preachers – Slingshot to Durango
The Ghastly Ones – Hangmen Hangten
Chaino – The Pygmy Song (Tikky Tikky Boom Boom)
Aloha Haole – Hard Rock Feelings
The Phantom Surfers – Monster From the Surf
The Surf Zombies – Mind Worm
The Plugz – El Clavo Y La Cruz
Johnny Aloha – Vacation
Creepxotica – Creepin Kilauea
Laika & The Cosmonauts – Surf’s You Right
Surf Raiders – Surfin’ Elephant
The Dead Milkmen – Beach Song
Boardwalker – It’s a Bikini World
There isn’t too much more to say about issue 1 of The Last Gang in Town that hasn’t been said in both podcasts. It’s a great book and, if it maintains its chaotic glory, it’ll go down as one of the great cult reads.
These shows were a blast to put together. Over the years, the shows that seem to work the best are ones where the genre isn’t stretched too far and the show seems to write itself. This month was no exception. The all-cover Clash show took days of sifting and the wretched realization that not enough people are covering the Clash.
This episode took a few hours to layer and the biggest hassle was deciding how best to order the tracks for the clearest listening experience (several ‘hits’ never made it in to the final copy and could very well be a third episode). If you follow the narrative of the show, you’ll hear a common theme of youth gone bored and angry. It’s common theme in punk, but true none the less: Angry and bored kids can move the world. Just look hip-hop before the money started rolling in.
I guess that leads me to the next logical progression. The one Cindy Lauper screamed about. Money changes everyone. I often wonder where punk and hip hop could have gone if the labels hadn’t decided to milk the bands for every liquid cent. What if the bands just said ‘no’ and went about making loud obnoxious noise? Would the world look any different if the kids were united?
Who knows? Maybe in some parallel universe Strummer became Prime Minister and Thatcher was stuck teaching remedial maths to a bunch of sub-literate troglodytes in a United Nations’ Ukrainian prison for repeat duck defilers. It’s a world I’d like to visit.
Although, it’d be a shame about those ducks.
The Clash – 1977
X Ray Spex – Art I Ficial
the Adverts – Bored Teenagers
The Jam – Saturday’s Kids
The Damned – Neat Neat Neat
Iggy and the Stooges – I Got a Right
The Boomtown Rats – Looking Out for No. 1
Gang of Four – Damaged Goods
The Dils – I Hate the Rich
Alternative TV – Urban Rich
The Undertones – Emergency Cases
The Dyaks – Gutter Kids
Nuns – Media Control
The Dickies – Banana Splits
Menace – The Young Ones
Buzzcocks – Oh S**t
Stiff Little Fingers – I Don’t Like You
The Saints – Know Your Product
The Wierdos – A Life of Crime
Vice Squad – Last Rockers
Cock Sparrer – Where Are They Now?
10. Chew Onmibus Vol. 4 (Image Comics)
Yes, Chew is a monthly book and, yes, most of these came out in 2013, but I find that some books are stronger in a continuous story. Like Chew for example. The continuing story of chibopathic detective Tony Chew hits its stride in this volume proving that it isn’t one repeated joke.
9. Rat Queens (Image Comics)
If Dungeons and Dragons was played by punk icons Poly Styrene, Joan Jett, and Kathlene Hannah, you would get Rat Queens. Bawdy adventures with low brow fantasy mayhem.
8. Gotham by Midnight (DC Comics)
Detective James Corrigan is the supernatural avenging spirit known as the Spectre. His dayjob is leading a unit of supernatural misfits for Gotham PD. As a team, they are off the books, off the charts of sanity, and very hush-hush.
7. Elektra (Marvel Comics)
Marvel’s bad-ass assassin is being hunted by some new baddies. The story is typical superhero posturing, but the art by Del Mondo is a mixture of Alex Ross, Egon Schiele, and Peter Chung.
6. She Hulk (Marvel Comics)
This now-cancelled series mixed elements of The Good Wife, Law and Order, and superhero punch-ups, into a compelling adult court room talking-head read. The cases were interesting and the cast was compelling. It is fun to read a hero book without big heroics. It’s a shame this book is gone.
5. Rachel Rising (Abstract Studios)
The most perfect horror comic on the shelves. Terry Moore’s tale of a woman attempting to solve her own murder continually pushes the limits of the twisted and macabre.
4. Saga (Image Comics)
This year provided more cliff-hangers for everyone’s favorite space opera. The plot it too convoluted to go into here, but, trust me, you need to read this book.
3. Southern Bastards (Image Comics)
A vicious tale of one man’s fight against the town he fled as a child. It was the subject of Episode 51 of my podcast.
2. Secret Avengers (Marvel Comics)
This books is hilarious. M.O.D.O.K, Spider-Woman, Nick Fury, Hawkeye, Coulson, Maria Hill, and Black Widow are Marvel’s dysfunctional first family of espionage. Where most teams succeed on their ability to work together, the All-New Secret Avengers are doing their best not to kill each other. Add a living bomb, syringe toting mouse, and one very angry genetic monstrosity, and the world might be better off ending.
1. Hawkeye (Marvel Comics)
Reading about the down-time adventure of Clint Barton may be cool, but Kate Bishop, Marvels’ ‘other Hawkeye’ is pure magnificence. Struggling to make a name for herself, Bishop attempts to go into the PI business.
Yesterday, I linked to some pretty good songs about comics.
Today, I link to better songs about comics.
5. Lyn Taitt – Batman Theme
Everyone loves the Batman theme. It’s a twister, a shaker, and a full fledged melody maker. From Adam West to that guys from Daredevil, everyone can get down with the Batman groove. My favorite take on it is this one with it’s ska infused hooks and horn break-down. All others are just Robins waiting in line.
4. The Eyeball Kid – Tom Waits
Just by mentioning this Eddie Campbell comic character, Tom Waits makes it cooler. The problem is, Eddie Campbell is already pretty damn cool. This recording just pushes the whole cool experience over the top.
3. DC and Milkshakes – Art Brut
A great pop ditty from Art Brut harkening back to the days of picking up comics at the local pharmacy and running to the pizza joint next door to read ’em and trade ’em. Ah, nostalgia and arrested development.
2. Italian Spiderman – Enzo Bontempi
If anyone owns a copy of this and they have no more use for it…please…for the love of all good things, contact me.
1. Nobody Loves the Hulk
Joss Whedon is doing the world a great disservice by not using this song, or some take on it, in the Avengers movies.
Just like with Batman 1972, I want this Wonder Woman series to happen as a monthly comic…
Within hours, roughly three thousand people visited his tumblr and other site – Pulp Sunday – see what the fuss was all about. No one was disappointed. This is one of those revisions that is so picture perfect its simply cries out for a series.
Now DC, I swear, if you publish this book I will buy it. In every format possible. In fact, the teaser images were so amazing that I shelved this month’s original podcast – Colin MacInnes’ mod classic Absolute Beginners – and pumped this show out. I love this episode. I love that Fransesco Francavilla sparked such a visceral response from me. I hope you love it as well.
Episode #38 – Batman 1972
You Can’t Even Walk In The Park – Johnny Pate (1973)
Mr. Big Stuff – Jean Knight (1971)
I’m The Man – Chris Jones (1970)
Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get – The Dramatics (1971)
Pusherman – Curtis Mayfield (1972)
Easin’ In – Edwin Starr (1973)
Don’t Knock the Cop – Soul Patrol (1971)
You Don’t Mess Around With Jim – Jim Croce (1972)
Torn and Frayed – The Rolling Stones (1972)
Vicious – Lou Reed (1972)
Search And Destroy – Iggy and the Stooges (1973)
Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) – Marvin Gaye (1971)
Tired of Being Alone – Al Green (1971)
Down And Out In New York City – James Brown (1973)
Back Stabbers – The O’Jays (1972)
Everything’s Gonna Be Alright – Robert Moore (1972)
The End Theme (Three Tough Guys) – Isaac Hayes
Superior Spider-Man #2 – How to kill a book. Take a good idea. Have no intention of carrying it out. Build it up over the course of several issues. Implement idea. Make loads of money. Immediately sink idea of actually happening. Hopefully all the other Marvel books with Spider-Man keep ignoring this one.
Don’t believe us? Pick up some comics from Fantasy Zone Comics and read for yourself…
I image Warren Ellis smoking cigarettes and drinking pints at the corner table of some pub which flirts with becoming popular and falls back into darkened obscurity. I imagine his work table the large oak corpse of a majestically aged tree. The ring count is massive. Don’t bother. Here he keeps counsel with the old gods of literature. Utterly comprehending their ghostly wails he bends their confused discord into compelling and brilliant tales.
The best of which are:
5. Next Wave (Marvel) – Many writers have tackled the deconstructed antagonistic view of capes. None have done it with such tongue-in-cheek humor. Essentially antiheroes join H.A.T.E in order to defeat S.I.L.E.N.T. Realizing they have been played, they bolt. The rest is a fight scene.
4. The Authority (Wildstorm) – If NEXTwave is the breakout comedy hit, Ellis’ summer blockbuster is The Authority. It is violent, vicious, sardonic, and involves a group of black-op agents coming in out of the cold. In one arc they defeat God. The team was led by one of the greatest most-balls-to- the-wall characters ever penned: Jenny Sparks.
3. Planetary (Wildstorm) – Reading Planetary is like coming in at the tail end of a joke and being forced to reconstruct it before the laughter kicks in. The Planetary team are future archeologists cleaning up the secret history of giant monsters, UFO’s, Chinese ghosts, superheroes, and famous movie monsters. Not too many comics have the brass to build a cohesive story in such small fragments, but the payoff is worth its weight in gold.
2. Fell (Image) – A ‘normal’ detective tries to make sense of a violent and bizarre city. This is what I believe it would be like to walk around Ellis’ subconscious.
1. Transmetropolitan (Vertigo) – See Here I really the adventures of Spider Jerusalem are more important than Watchmen and V for Vendetta combined. Politics, drugs, sex, violence, and the most frightening America since MegaCity 1.
The last great mainstream anti-hero gets sanitized for your protection…
Over the course of 20 some-odd years, you really get to know a man…even a fictional one. This February, Vertigo Comics puts out the flame that is Hellblazer. After 300 issues. After compelling and shocking stories. After dozens of the industry’s brightest minds and deftest hands. After watching John Constantine age, fall in an out of love, go to prison, go to an asylum, sacrifice his friends, and con his way in and out of Hell, it will be sad to watch him become another bland paper-thin hero in DC’s New 52. He was a magician whose name, in one series, scared the pants off of some of Hell’s most vile and yet the audience never saw the full extend of his magic. He was a rogue and a bastard and his will be missed.