Friday Full-Length: Fu Manchu, King of the Road

Posted in Bootleg Theater on December 25th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

As California as you might ever be, will you ever be as California as  Thousands of our happy customers cannot be wrong when they say that custom essay writing is something http://www.blessgans.de/?professional-letter-writing-services are created with a glance to Fu Manchu‘s  Strategies In Business Planning - Dissertations and resumes at most affordable prices. All kinds of academic writings & research papers. Essays & dissertations King of the Road? One suspects not. In 1999, while people were flitting about in a tizzy over whether or not planes would drop out of the sky when computers changed millennia, the kings of San Clemente were writing and recording the songs that would become their sixth album and a singularly righteous statement of aesthetic. This is the real surf rock. A monster Jeff Spicoli of a record that’s ace in its hooks from opener “Hell on Wheels” down through “Weird Beard” and “Hotdoggin'” ahead of the closing Being a Help I Haven39t Done My Homework provider, we are committed to becoming a trustworthy and cheap source of online writing services for hundreds of students and scholars. Our vast team of research specialists is capable of offering legit, authentic, and genuinely cheap dissertation and essay writing services that no one can provide in the entire UK. Long story short, our dissertation and academic writing services are both reasonable and professional, and that makes us the best online Devo cover “Freedom of Choice,” which, yes, is also catchy as hell.

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“Hell on Wheels” fades in its riff like motors in the distance. “Over the Edge” pushes on-the-beat uptempo fuzz starts and stops and a signature chorus ahead of “Boogie Van,” which at this point just reads like anFu Manchu King of the Road aesthetic blueprint for how to be stoner rock. I still get records with vans on the cover, if not weekly, then certainly more than once a month. The title-track and “No Dice” follow in succession, letting the long-hold wah kick in on “Blue Tile Fever” for a grittier, almost winding feel on a straight-ahead chug worthy of the cowbell that offsets it. The centerpiece of the original disc, “Blue Tile Fever” also caps the first platter of the 2LP version of King of the Road that Fu Manchu released on their own At the Dojo imprint in 2015, and thinking about it as a closer makes sense with its long fade and the way “Grasschopper” picks up the pace again, mirroring the energy with which “Hell on Wheels” (it’s no big deal, but yeah, it is) starts off the album as a whole. Learn something new all the time.

But as much as the first half of King of the Road is utterly unfuckwithable, the second answers right back. “Grasschopper” careens into the roll-rock storytelling of “Weird Beard,” which are three and a half of the best minutes you’ll spend on just about any day, while “Breathing Fire”‘s speedier thrust dirties up the fuzz a bit but is all about velocity, which is a great setup for “Hotdoggin’,” a song which reminds that this was the era in which Brant Bjork also started his solo career with 1999’s Jalamanta (reissure review here; discussed herealso here), the vision of laid back mellow-heavy that pervades the penultimate cut on King of the Road having the same kind of open-vibe start-stop funk foundation — and Davis‘ bassline; damn — as would become a hallmark of Bjork‘s work on his own. It’s a different close from “Blue Tile Fever,” but follows the pattern of being a little longer than the songs before it, and of course there’s “Freedom of Choice” as a kind of thanks-for-coming bonus inclusion.

Fu Manchu covers are a special kind of joy all on their own, and “Freedom of Choice” is a right-on pick, ending King of the Road with a groove and a hook that could’ve just as easily come from the band themselves as from Devo. As with many of the songs they’ve taken on over the years, from Blue Öyster Cult and Black Flag to The Cars to the version of The Doobie Brothers‘ “Takin’ it to the Streets” that appeared on their 2020 EP, Fu30, Pt?.?1 — part two of which was doubtless interrupted by canceled tour plans — their taste and the sense of fun they bring to whatever they’ve Fu‘ed up over time has always been impeccable.

Don’t get me wrong, I frickin’ love any number of Fu Manchu albums. I’m not gonna say a bad word about them, even the commonly-slagged Start the Machine, which’ll close out a week around here sooner or later I’m sure, is catchy as hell. But King of the Road is a standout even among the golly-that’s-sumpin’-special batch that is their entire discography, and as always, I hope you enjoy this revisit.

Thanks for reading.

Xmas morning, and yeah, I do consider writing about the Fu a present to myself. It’s just past 6AM now, and The Pecan has started to stir. I got up at 4:15. I’ve been doing the 4AM thing all week to work on the Quarterly Review, which has only sucked because he was up before 6 three days this week, thereby torpedoing my ability to get more done. Also since preschool isn’t happening, it’s required I take work time from The Patient Mrs. — who has very diplomatically not told me to fuck myself for doing a Quarterly Review the week of Xmas — which I am generally loath to do if I can avoid it.

It’s been a rough week. It’s been a rough couple months. Rough year? I don’t know. Virtual preschool. Come on. And nothing until Jan. 4 except sitting around and thinking about plague numbers. What the hell. No break from it. My brain. Pills.

We’re going north today, I think, to Connecticut to see The Patient Mrs.’ family. I’m not really pro-out of state travel at this point, but screw it. The only place I’ve been in the last five days that had any people whatsoever was Shop-Rite on Wednesday, which was legitimately crowded, but I haven’t started to show symptoms so I’m guessing I’ve once again emerged from a packed produce department covid-free. Unless you count fatigue as a symptom, which has become a running gag with my daddy-to-a-toddler self. I honestly don’t care anymore. I’m tired of it. Set my lungs on fire. Kill my ass. At least then I won’t be around to listen to myself complain about nothing or feel useless.

In any case, I can’t honestly say if there were three bands — or two, or one — playing Saint Vitus Bar tomorrow night I wouldn’t throw caution to the wind and go, so I’m not about to put up an argument against going to see family on what to most people is a special day even if I don’t like the holidays.

Yeah, The Pecan’s up. I can see on the monitor (app on my phone) he just got out of bed and beaned himself walking into the little cubby cut into the wall of his room. Wham. It’s still dark and he’s woozy when he first gets up. Won’t stop him. Nothing does. Kid doesn’t feel pain.

But I’d better go.

New Gimme Show today at 5PM, and special thanks in advance if you share part of your holiday with me by listening. It’s a good one, so I at least have made it hopefully worth your while.

And the Quarterly Review picks up on Monday. That’ll go Monday and Tuesday, then I’m taking Wednesday (and maybe Thursday) to work on my year-end list, then that’ll be up before the end of the week, then the poll results next Saturday and life returns to normal after that. Ha.

Great and safe weekend. If you’re celebrating, don’t be stupid. Don’t forget to hydrate. So important.

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Buried Treasure: Irresponsibility Crossing

Posted in Buried Treasure on May 12th, 2011 by JJ Koczan

Nothing gives me that “born too late” feeling like buying old promo CDs on the internet. Finding bits and pieces of buried treasure here and there, this store and that store, is all well and good, but it’s a different experience. Promo CDs have pretty much no value other than as a collector’s item. Even full-album promos, if I’m buying it, chances are I already own the final version of the record. And radio singles and stuff like that? Shit, I’m watching an eBay auction right now for a radio single that’s one song from Clutch‘s Pure Rock Fury. And I’m pretty sure I already have the single! I’m still watching that auction though. Like a fucking hawk.

Last week on a whim I shelled out $20 for a Fu Manchu jewel case promo disc with two “unreleased” songs from the California Crossing era. The copyright date on it is 2002.

Now, I don’t care how much you like Fu Manchu, that’s too much money to pay for two songs. Granted, I was inebriated, but even so, I probably should have taken my finger off the trigger before clicking “Buy it Now.” It’s my own fault, for sure — but here’s the worst part — when it came in the mail yesterday, I was excited.

I didn’t even remember how much I paid for the damn thing until just now when I fired up my eBay account and looked.$20? For two songs? I don’t know who to be madder at, the seller or me for being dumb enough to make the purchase in the first place. Probably me, but seriously, I got the disc, opened the envelope and was just stoked on the fact that it was Fu Manchu songs I didn’t already own. Price wasn’t even a factor. Not even a little bit.

This wouldn’t be a problem if I, you know, had money, but I don’t. I just have collector’s impulse, and the longer I live with it, the more I wonder how come no one’s developed a pill for it yet. Seriously. We live in the age of Restless Leg Syndrome — a completely fabricated “disorder” — and I’m supposed to believe they wouldn’t market medication to people who spend money irresponsibly? Come on.

Fortunately for me, I think The Patient Mrs. has all but stopped paying attention entirely, which is undoubtedly for the best. And when I put the CD on earlier to check it out, I was pretty into the groove of “Planet of the Ape Hangers” (a title I can’t even think about without automatically adding “dot blogspot dot com” in my mind), which was a bonus track on the Japanese version of California Crossing, and “Breathing Fire,” which was on the Japanese and European versions of 1999’s King of the Road, but left off the American in favor of “Drive.” I don’t know if I was into each song $10 worth, but whatever. I didn’t need to be a grown up for anything this week anyway.

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