Archive for the ‘Top 5’ Category


Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life Vol #4

February 3, 2008

Chuggin’ right along with Vol #4.  Again, a bit of a dichotomy in terms of taste and musical background. The only other important difference between these two is that Greg comes into the store fairly regularly, and I don’t think Nick Strate has been to the new location at all.  Harsh dude.  

First up is Greg. Here he is…
…and here is his response.

“This email will probably be dumped into the annals of email hell, but I was considering the whole music/record that changed your life and thinking to myself, hmm… has a record ever changed my life? At first I said “ha, yeah right.” Of course, these days I am older and I am not as passionate as I used to be, so the thought of a record having an impact seemed ridiculous.

Though after thinking of it, and I may be wasting my time with this email, but I realized that things did change my life. Thing like records and music and skating. I thought about it and realized that I wouldn’t be where I am or be the person I am if it wasn’t for a few records or bands or periods in my life.  Yes, I am a nobody and I am not in a band or anyone anyone knows, but I have been on this scene since ’95. Yes, to an individual who grew up with Battalion of Saints or The Descendents or Scream this may not seem like a big deal – rowing up with punk in the 90’s.  But to some of us it had a huge impact.  So to avoid anymore rambling here is my top 5.

Rancid- And Out Comes the Wolves
I mention this album cus I was told about a hotline that one could call to listen to music. I called the hotline with my friend when I was in 8th grade. I used to be a huge Red Hot Chili Peppers fan and was always wondering who the heck the band called Rancid was when I was looking through tapes at the record store.  Well eventually I found out who this band was. I am not saying this album was the fastest or best Rancid album. What I am saying is that this album changed my life because it catapulted me into other bands. It got me listening to NOFX and other current fast bands which is apparently what I needed. I was sold on the thing called punk at that point.  I was an angry skating teen at that point just looking to mess stuff up. This made me aware of other things out in the world. These bands also got me into Operation Ivy and Minor Threat and Youth Brigade, etc.

Reversal of Man/ Swing Kids- Any album
Ok so I put these two bands together cus they got me into a whole other realm of music. I was in High School in Orlando and I was invited to a show by a friend. Little did I know that this show would be a huge deal for me. It was in a kids home in winter park or maitland, I am not really sure. I got my hand shut in a car door and it sucked and my sister was flippin out on her boyfriend but aside from that the night was amazing. Basically we went to a house show and I was so tired and annoyed with the whole night but eventually this band Reversal of Man played who I was told was awesome. Well they played and it ended with Matt Coplon at my feet and a drum stick in my hand. He was laying on my feet in nothing but his boxers. I have to say that I was blown away. Later that night I went to my friend ethan’s house and we went to sleep to the Swing Kids 7″ and I was further blown away. So for the next month or so it was nothing but Reversal of Man and Swing Kids on a tape that Ethan made for me. It was awesome. It had an impact because it got me into a whole new realm of music and way of life. It got me into bands like MK Ultra, Charles Bronson, Spazz,  Portraits of Past, Frail and Four Hundred Years,  etc. It was more intimate and personal and I was really into it.

Joy Division- Everything
 I don’t have much to say about them other than what has already been said. They are amazing. Just listen to them. I can’t express in words what this band is all about.

Rudimentary Peni
Everything,  but mainly the ep’s, Death Church, and Cacophany.   Like Joy Division this band impacted me. I read a book written by the singer and I was able to get a zine written by some dudes in Orlando in the 90’s. This band is hard to describe, but if you like punk and obscure shit this band is for you. To me they have a sound of their own. The vocals are insane and they are a must listen to anyone who cares about music. This is regardless of what music you are into. Just listen, they are too hard to describe.

Gza- Seriously, just listen to the Liquid Swords album.
 GZA reminded me that hip hop wasn’t dead. It was living in the hills. It wasn’t a giant that everyone seemed to miss-mos def. GZA was around to remind people that there was still lyrical masters. He was able to mix awesome beats with slick lyrical skills. He paved the way for Lupe Fiasco and Talib and Mos. He Followed in the steps of Tribe but with a new twist. He probably heard common sense at some point and built on the neo style. The point is that for one who has lost faith in hip hop, there is still real hip hop out there and this album is hip hop. This album is simple skate music, it’s lazy Wu Tang music.

Neutral Milk Hotel- In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
 I know this marks 6 albums and I could mention way more than six albums that impacted my life, like The Misfits Walk Among Us, but I felt this album was more appropriate. This album is a nod to anyone who knows how to play the guitar and enjoys folk and punk or just folk, because folk is awesome. This album made the list because it is simple. There is nothing grand about this album.  It’s a simple composition that should give any young person hope that they can form a band. Jeff’s songs are so easy to play and so enjoyable to play. For those who only know power chords this album is a great catalyst to learning how to play acoustic songs. Aside from that, this album is simply awesome. I can’t say much more than that, it has been ranked amongst the best albums and what not on big magazines reviews and blah blah blah. The basic point is that this album brings a simple method to the table. It appeals to a variety of crowds and it should expand anyones musical taste.

So there is my list. I know its 6 instead of 5, but 5 is hard to stick to.
Next up is Mr. Nick Strate.  Here he is, singing an Abba song.

…and here is his response.

Storm and Stress – “self titled”
My old band opened up for these guys at Stripmine Records in the summer of 1998. I knew two of the members to be in Don Caballero (Ian Williams and Erich Emm) and one (Kevin Shea) occasionally played with the Swirlies. double cool. I was getting stoned upstairs while they played, so I couldn’t really see what was happening. It sounded like a tornado. For about 30 or 40 minutes. When I walked downstairs, there were drum pieces, guitar parts, strings, cables, records, CDs and most of Damian Lee’s impressive pornography collection (shredded) strewn from one end of the store to the other. I was excited to buy the record and see how this all came across on vinyl. And while not one of my favorite records, it’s one of the most inspirational. It’s about an hour’s worth of strung together vocal, tonal and percussive fragments. Certain parts of it are really, really beautiful. That record taught me to embrace chance, to REALLY love improvisation and to buy more guitar pedals.

Sorry. I’ll keep the rest of these a bit more brief.

Palace – “Viva Last Blues”
Touching, raucous, beautiful. Got this in the 10th grade, I think. Oldham’s voice hits the warble supreme on this record. The production is so warm and loose — it sounds like the band rehearsed the songs maybe only once or twice before recording. This record’s a commitment; it’s a ramshackle dedication to love, self-pity and getting loaded. What’s better when you’re 16?

Blonde Redhead – “La Mia Vita Violenta”
A decadent, but very serious record. I learned a lot about playing music from this record. Lots of open tunings, f**ked up chords, drone, noise, bizarre production. Still relatively accessible though. One of the things I loved about this record was how these Berklee graduates could make a really epic and adventurous jam out of a two-note bassline and really minimal guitar playing.

Bowie – “Low”
The aforementioned Damian Lee gave me a huge chunk of Bowie’s discography (The Man Who Sold the World to Scary Monsters) on vinyl when I was hanging out in the store one day. I spent about a year and a half obsessively flipping over Hunky and Ziggy. I was a freshman in college before I got to Low. I taped this record and walked around Washington D.C. listening to it on a deafening Walkman level. Beyond fostering an appreciation for really, really good production values, this record taught me that it was OK for an artist to be kind of phony as long as the artist was being phony in an interesting way and making some kind of valuable contribution to the cultural capital. Low succeeds on both of those levels.

Steely Dan – “Countdown to Ecstasy”
Though I feel like I should mention Mercury Rev, Guided By Voices, Pavement or some other band that scored the transformative drug experiences of my youth, the coveted 5 spot goes to th’ Dan. Got into this around my Junior year of college. I’ve got my complaints about the way Fagen and Becker sometimes approached songwriting, but these jams are solid gold through and through. The most important thing about this record, though, and the reason that it changed my life, was that it made me realize – probably for the first time – that my parents were actually cool. I stole their copy, after all.

You can check out Nick’s blog here –


Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life Vol #3

January 29, 2008

You’ve probably realized from past posts on this topic that I try to pair up different people within each post.  These two responses posted below have the largest difference, not just in terms of musical styles and taste, but more importantly in that one person operates a record label, whereas the other notes how the concept of an album is dead – instead opting for MP3 blogs.  Your thoughts?

Also, commenting with you own top 5 lists is fine, but I’ll gladly turn them into regular posts if you email them to me at this address – deadtank (at) gmail (dot) com.  Thanks!

And without further adieu…

Vol #3 of the series features Biff, of the band I-Object and record label Feral Kid Records – and Joey Marchy, of the local Jacksonville Blog Urbanjacksonville.

Here’s Biff,
… and here is Biff’s response..

“I’ve read a few interviews with bands or individuals where a similar idea to this was discussed. A number of times it seemed like those being interviewed attempted to seem superior to those reading the interview by naming off very obscure bands in order to appear more well-versed. They then never even went more in-depth as to discuss what these records were or who the bands were or why they were so important to them. I’ve tried to steer away from that as much as possible with this list. The following records have all withstood the test of time to me and mark very important landmarks in my life. They aren’t organized in order of importance, but more so in a sort of time line of my discovery of these records and just HOW important they are to me. Enjoy!

5 Records that have had a Profound Impact on my Life

1) Black Flag – Damaged LP – originally released December 1981 on SST Records, their first full-length LP.

Seeing as how this LP was released prior to my birth, I obviously did not pick it up hot off the presses, but it still hit hard with me nonetheless. I picked this record up at a time when i had first began to discover punk. I didn’t really know much aside from something about punk appealed to me. I also knew that if you liked punk, you liked Black Flag, that’s how it appeared to me anyways. Being young and highly impressionable I started searching everywhere I could for anything that I could find by this band and ultimately stumbled onto the Damaged LP at a record store. After picking it up and taking it home I knew that I had found exactly what I was looking for and to this day its fury is virtuously unmatched as far as I’m concerned.

2) Crimpshrine – Quit Talking Claude EP – pop-punk from Berkeley, CA. 1989 Lookout! Records

After being really into punk for a while, you start to notice just how much there is out there. There are so many layers related to DIY punk and once you start peeling them back you continue to become exposed to so many incredible, awe-inspiring bands. While I was still quite young in terms of punk years I started seeing the name Crimpshrine more and more. I asked a few friends of mine about them and everyone kept telling me just how much I needed to listen to this band. While flipping through some 7″s I wound up coming upon and purchasing the Quit Talking Claude EP. When I got home that night it was very late and I still lived at home. I didn’t want to deal with waking up the folks but couldn’t wait any longer to hear this much anticipated record. I popped it onto the record player in the living room with a big-ass pair of old headphones my parents had with it. After letting the record play for a minute or so through the first song I began scoping out the lyric sheet inside. I was absolutely floored. Never had I heard a band address such real life topics as Crimpshrine did within that 7”. As corny as it may sound, this record changed my life. I started viewing the world differently. It made me realize the long-lasting effect that punk was bound to have on my life. This is easily one of the most inspirational records i have ever purchased.

3) Assück – Misery Index LP – grindcore from FL. Released in 1996 by Sound Pollution Records

Getting into a thing like punk rock can be a very overwhelming thing. Countless bands within countless sub-genres, how could you possibly know them all? Standardly, People seem to start off by focusing on one specific sub-genre that they know they like when they first get into punk. Ultimately they begin to branch out and experience more and more of all that is encompassed within such a diverse musical genre. Assück was another band whose name I had been seeing everywhere. I had not at the time been very interested in the aspect of brutality within my punk rock. Being from Buffalo, NY I had a number of friends into bands like Cannibal Corpse whose records never really did anything for me. I was into punk rock. I didn’t care about speed or musical ability. I was into it because I was pissed. I didn’t yet know exactly why I was so pissed but I knew at the time that death-metal bands like Cannibal Corpse did nothing for me whatsoever (although today I can by all means appreciate “Eaten Back to Life”. While it may not make this specific list it is a killer record from the Corpse and I must say that now I am proud that they lived in my city when it was created).

A friend of mine brought the Assück – Misery Index record over to my house and INSISTED that I listen to it. Initially, I was impressed because it was far more intense than anything I had ever heard, but once again, it took scoping out the lyric sheet for me to be sucked in for life. Very intelligent, well thought out lyrics over top of the most intense, hi-energy, pissed-off, fastest music I had ever been privy to. How could I not absolutely love this record and this band!?

4) Uriah Heep – s/t LP – (named “Very ‘eavy…Very ‘umble” in UK) Released: June, 1970

A seemingly odd choice for a record list such as this, I feel it makes a whole lot of sense. For those of you not familiar with Uriah Heep, they are a British Prog-Rock band formed in 1969. Their self-titled record is absolutely incredible, start to finish. Melodic and catchy yet still having very heavy riffs and complex solos. Listening to this record makes it VERY easy to see where the inspiration for a lot of metal and prog bands comes from. I don’t have nearly as much to say about this one except to strongly encourage people to check it out. It’s a wonderful historic piece and is really interesting to hear so much complex yet still catchy and rocking stuff going on within one record. It definitely has helped me to appreciate the musical aspects of things more-so and was a great gateway into other genres like prog-rock and certain aspects of metal.

5) Skate Korpse – Discography LP – Released December 2006 Feral Kid Records

Skate Korpse was a band from Rochester and Buffalo, NY. They were a band comprised of incredible people and were always unbelievably inspiring to see live. They came around at a time when the buffalo hardcore-punk scene had by all means seen better days. For the most part of their existence they seemed very under appreciated in these parts. By the time of their untimely demise, however, people started to realize what an incredible thing we had all just been taking for granted. Their music is very classic sounding 80’s style skate-rock that doesn’t sound LIKE any specific band, but rather sounds as if they could have been alongside any of the classic pioneers of the genre such as JFA, The Faction, Big Boys or the Dicks.

Seeing how this record was released only a little more than a year ago it may seem a strange thing to put on a “5 life-changing records” list. The reason it is on here is not because it is an incredible record (although it TOTALLY is), but rather because this record helped me discover quite a bit about what I am passionate about. I was given the incredible opportunity to release the discography LP. I did not run a record label or have any of the knowhow that comes along with doing such a thing, but I had been toying with the idea for years. Being given such an opportunity really forced me to step it up because I would have done absolutely anything to help this band that I cared about so much. I ended up silk-screening all 1000 of the covers front-and-back, on not exactly the most adequate of equipment and had one hell of a time with it, but absolutely everything about the experience has been well worth it. Now Feral Kid Records has become a VERY big part of what I do with my life.

So, if any members of the band stumble onto this, thank you Skate Korpse for such an opportunity, I would not be doing what I am these days if it were not for you.

You can check out Biff’s band and label at these sites.

Next up is Joey Marchy. Here he is…

… and here is Joey’s response.

Public Enemy – It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
I listened to this tape for a year straight when I was in 6th grade. It was my first introduction to hip hop and it sealed the deal for hip hop in my life. Forever.

Sonic Youth – Daydream Nation
Probably the most influential song on this album, to me, was Teenage Riot. Up to that point I’d never had a favorite song. Teenage Riot became my favorite song and is till this day. Hearing this album opened my eyes to the fact that there is more to music than what they play on the radio. Last years highlight: Seeing Sonic Youth perform Teenage Riot live in Chicago.

Nas – Illmatic
1994 and 1995 were a pivotal year in the evolution of hip hop and my music life. Listening and trying to find the samples used on this album put me on a path of discovery that has made me what I am today. Many of the samples came from a movie called Wild Style which led to my interest in in New York and graffiti. Which led to street art, fashion, and an all around Urban lifestyle.

DJ Shadow – Entroducing
This is another album I listened to for a year straight. My friend Matt gave to me when I was working at Ramworks right after college. In the car, at my house, at work, wherever. This album introduced me to DJs and led to a love for combining two pieces of music together to create a remix.

MP3 Blogs – The New Album
The album is dead to me. Today I get all my music from MP3 blogs like the ones listed below. To me these are the new albums and how I discover all the new music I listen to.

You can visit Joey Marchy’s blog here –


Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life Vol #2

January 27, 2008

Vol #2 of the “Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life” posts features Edwin Turner, local teacher and blogger, and Samantha Jones, Gainesville musician, yoga teacher, and mother.

Here is Eddie.
…and his contribution.

“R.E.M.–Out of Time
My dad, of all people, bought this for me in the sixth grade when he gave me a discman for Christmas. It was like the first CD I owned.

The Pixies–Doolittle
I bought this on tape in the seventh grade. I was cherry picking the Pump up the Volume soundtrack for artists like Pixies and Sonic Youth and Rollins Band. I used to ride my bike to Vintage Vinyl on the weekends and buy used cassettes. I have this wonderful memory of listening to this album for the first time riding home on my bike, and then listening to it repeatedly in the front yard, playing basketball until it was dark and time to come inside.

Bob Dylan–The Freewheelin Bob Dylan
This is still one of my favorite albums. I always liked Bob Dylan, even when I was really little; I just liked his voice. I never had to “get into” Dylan. Another one of the first CDs I ever owned. It’s such a great album, everyone should own it, really.

Gastr del Sol–Upgrade and Afterlife
One of my favorite all time records. I got this when I was, like, a senior in high school I guess. It really freed up my idea about what music could be, how a person could make music, what was beautiful and what was harsh.

Public Enemy–It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Down
The first album I ever bought for myself. It was on tape. This was probably, 1989, 1990. If it seems like I’m trying to build hipster street cred, I willingly add that the second album I ever bought for myself was a Fresh Prince cassette. In the late eighties, I simply liked all rap: Ice-T and NWA were categorically equal to M.C. Hammer.”

Eddie’s blog, Biblioklept, is here –

…  up is Samantha Jones.

…and here she is (perfroming with the now defunct band Slang)
..and her list…

“Bad Brains “i against i” – This record is the reason I SHRED on guitar!!

Cap’n Jazz “Analphabetapolothology” – When I first split up with Chuck I decided I wanted to teach yoga all the time.   I used to listen to this album and do this crazy yoga dance.  Very freeing.

Lightning Bolt “Wonderful Rainbow” – (Sorry, another yoga story) I would listen to this record over and over again while learning to stand on my hands or forearms. very intense music for a very intense yoga practice!

Dag Nasty – Anything by this band.  I don’t know why.  These songs just made me feel ok when all else was teenage angst and disillusionment.

Iron and Wine “The Creek Drank The Cradle”  I would crank this record and dig and dig and dig in my garden.  Best crop ever.

I know there are probably some records that affected me before like, ten years ago, but these are the ones that leap to mind.  You know, short term memory and all.”

Samantha has been in a handful of Gainesville Bands, including Bitchin’, Rumbleseat, and Slang.  You can listen to her current projects, Cassette and The Deep and Holy Sea, at these links.


Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life Vol #1

January 22, 2008
I emailed a handful of friends to please send me a list of “The Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life.”  The first two responses I got are from John Citrone of Folio Weekly and Keri Smith of Park Ave CDs (Orlando) and the band Gomek.
Here is John.
and here is John’s reply…
“Josh, This was really hard, dude. REALLY hard. 

1. Jimi Hendrix – Band of Gypsys
Hendrix changed my life in so many ways, but this was actually the very first record I placed on a turntable by myself. I was 5 years old (back in 1972) and my parents had a badass record collection including this legendary album. Though “Band of Gypsys” was released shortly before Hendrix died, it is an example of what a magician the man was when he wasn’t completely out-of-his-skull stoned. His chemistry with old friends Billy Cox and Buddy Miles is palpable and humbling. Hendrix is the reason I play guitar left-handed. Just look at that gorgeous album cover. At age 5, and you see that Hendrix is holding the guitar that way, then YOU hold the guitar THAT WAY.

2. Sly and the Family Stone – Stand!
My introduction to the world of funk, also at an early age, also extracted from my parents’ record collection. Though P-Funk is heralded as the greatest funk band ever, I always preferred Sly. (Don’t get me wrong, P-Funk is the shit.) But Sly and his band could create sweeping epics of funkiness without losing context or groove. Also, I was challenged intellectually by this record (as challenged as a 5-year-old could be) by the song “Don’t Call Me Nigger.” I asked my mom why they were using the word I was always told was bad. She said they were trying to make a point about how BAD that word is. It took me a very long time to understand what she was getting at.

3. Kate Bush – The Kick Inside
This album turned me on to the possibilities of the female voice (which is why most of the music I write is created for female vocalists). Kate Bush is such a magnificent song writer, performer and vocalist. This record kicked off a decades-long love affair that continues today.

4. Frank Zappa – Sheik Yerbouti
Though not Frank’s most complex or challenging record, it was my first FZ album. I now own more than 250 vinyl Zappa records, countless CDs, more than 120 video tapes of concerts, interviews, documentaries and so on. The man was the most brilliant composer in modern music. Further, FZ opened my mind to the music of everyone from Miles Davis and Thelonious Monk to Mahavishnu Orchestra and King Crimson to Edgard Varese and Stravinski to John Cage and Philip Glass to Johnny Watson and so many other artists I never would have discovered were it not for Uncle Frank.
5. Tie Between:
John Zorn – Circle Maker (Masada Strings)
Sleepytime Gorilla Museum – Grand Opening and Closing
Too close to call. Masada is just so fucking amazing, especially the string ensemble compositions. Zorn is a fucking genius – period. Sleepytime is, in my opinion, the most progressive (not in the bad way) band currently working. Dark, complex, violent and humorous. No better combination exists.
Five records is just too few. I would have to also include Joni Mitchell’s “Court and Spark” and “For The Roses,” The Beatles “White Album,” Black Flag’s “Damaged,” absolutely Kiss’ first “Alive” record, Led Zeppelin’s “Physical Graffiti,” Metallica’s “Ride The Lightning.” And hundreds of others that now reside deep within my DNA.”
John’s Music projects are cataloged and linked here –
The site for his day job at Folio Weekly is here –
Next up is Keri Smith.
Here’s Keri (at Richmond Best’s Friends Day, 2005)
And here is Keri’s Response…
“Well really, the record that changed my perspective on music was Reversal of Man’s “Revolution Summer.” I was sixteen or seventeen, sitting in my friend’s apartment and I found the zine part of the record. Reading it, I realised there was a whole aspect of punk and hardcore that I didn’t know about. I related to the politics in the zine more than anything else surrounding me at the time, and when I heard the record a few minutes later, I knew I’d found something important.
That record continued to set the standard for me until I heard His Hero Is Gone’s “Fifteen Counts of Arson.” It was probably the heaviest thing I’d heard, except for bands like As The Sun Sets who I always thought were kind of a joke. I listened to His Hero Is Gone for a whole summer, and through them found other bands like Drop Dead, Nine Shocks Terror, and Void. The record made me want to learn more about heavier music, and is probably responsible for most of the “punk” records I subsequently bought.

I also owe a huge debt of gratitude to Karp’s “Mustache’s Wild.” Karp had these ridiculous, yelling vocals, which you can still hear in their newest incarnation Big Business. Karp made me want to bang my head, hard. Everytime I put on that record, I get too excited for words. These are all records that helped me learn something about my place in the world, or my place in punk rock or hardcore. I think that hip hop, like punk, also has the ability to shape one’s impression of themselves and their surroundings.

The hip hop record that changed everything for me was J Dilla’s “Doughnuts.” I know a lot of other people will say the time thing, but it’s true, this record changed my perspective about hip hop completly. It got me excited about the possibilities of records and record collecting, and all the samples and manipulations that come along with it. After Doughnuts, I started buying back all the records I remembered from middle school, and learning a whole history of music that I’d forgotten about. The excitement I feel about hip hop now is the same excitement I had when I first started learning about hardcore (even though I’m STILL stoked on hardcore, forever).

For my fifth record, I have to choose the True Feedback Story 7″ that was given to me a few years ago by a good friend. I think it’s the only 7″ they have, although I’ve heard of unreleased recordings collecting mold in Gainesville somewhere. I’ve listened to this 7″ so much I’ve had to get a second copy to use when I make mix’s for people (without all the scratches and pops I’ve lent to it). It’s one of my favorites because of a song on it, “Pop Song 99.” There’s a line in the song, “I lay with unanswered letters, stay at home, don’t answer the phone, and play record after record.” It has become one of those things that I often repeat to myself riding my bike home at night, or when I’m sitting in my room, playing my favorite records over and over to myself.”

Keri’s sings for the band Gomek. You can listen to them here –

Feel free to comment, but if you’d like to send in your own “Top 5 Records That Changed Your Life” list, please email them to me at  Thanks.