Japanese electronic pop weirdness? Check. Parisian pop pleasures? Yup. Dark and moody RnB electro dripping with thick analogue synths? We got you covered. And then there’s the more avant-garde stuff like Henry Cow and Thinking Fellers Union Local 282. Plus, we’ve got rampaging lo-fi punk rock in the form of Erase Errata. Something for everyone then. Or nothing for someone.
We proudly present this month’s WE FOUGHT THE BIG ONE 10-track YouTube Playlist with commentary courtesy of Rick Taylor and guest dj Richard P. Happy listening!
5 tracks from WFTBO DJ Rick Taylor…
Yellow Magic Orchestra — “Behind the Mask” (1979, Alfa)
Rick: “Japan’s answer to Kraftwerk!” is usually how Yellow Magic Orchestra is described. And to be fair, there’s more than an smidgen of everyone’s favorite German robots in the YMO sound. Regardless, this is hugely compelling stuff.
Miharu Koshi — “L’amour Toujours” (1983, Yen Records)
Rick: A rare example of a cover that’s better than the original. French synth pop iconoclasts Telex may have written “L’amour Toujours” but Japan’s Miharu Koshi perfected it. The more I hear Miharu Koshi’s work in the 80s, the more I want to keep listening.
Clio — “T’as vu” (2019, Un Plan Simple)
Rick: A delectable slice of French indie pop that glides with an effortless cool that only the French can do. Addictive and wonderful.
Psychic Mirrors — “Midnight Special” (2013, Peoples Potential Unlimited)
Rick: Haunting and moody RnB for late-night listening. Psychic Mirrors is a fantastic 10 piece band from Miami that somehow ended up making a record for a boutique DC-based label called Peoples Potential Unlimited.
Nite Jewel — “What Did He Say” (2008, Gloriette Records)
Rick: It’s hard to believe this record is already 12 years old! Rather than offer my own comment, I will simply point to something one YouTube user said: “this sounds like something you’d hear on some forgotten radio station driving through the middle of nowhere at 3am.”
5 Tracks from WFTBO Guest DJ Richard P…
As our favorite British comedians once said, “and now for something completely different…”
Henry Cow — “War” (1975, Virgin)
Richard: Henry Cow was one of the first bands that worked towards eradicating my conception of musical genres, combining modern classical, free jazz and rock into anti-capitalist prog noise. This song includes some of my favorite vocals by periodic collaborator Dagmar Krause.
Thinking Fellers Union Local 282 — “A Lamb’s Lullaby” (1996, Communion Label)
Richard: This poppy and hypnotic song is good choice for adding noise to one’s next Christmas mix.
Wild Billy Childish And The Musicians Of The British Empire – “Snack Crack” (2007, Damaged Goods)
Richard: Astonishingly prolific multidisciplinary artist Billy Childish has produced similar lo-fi garage punk in a wide array of projects, but this anti-consumer culture pop song is continually relevant.
Cerberus Shoal – “Rain” (1995, Stella White)
Richard: Melodic and driving post-punk from before this band became folkified, teamed up with Alan Bishop, or evolved into the Gira-produced Fire on Fire.
Erase Errata – “Giant Hans” (2006, Kill Rock Stars)
Like what you’re listening to and want more? Check out WE FOUGHT THE BIG ONE every first Friday at the Marx Cafe (3203 Mt. Pleasant St. NW, Washington DC 20009)