The Echo Presents
Shark Toys, Colleen Green
1822 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, California, 90026
This event is 18 and over
Little was said about Parquet Courts’ debut effort, American Specialties. Released exclusively on cassette tape, the quasi-album was an odd collection of 4 track recordings that left those who were paying attention wanting more. A year of woodshedding live sets passed before the Courts committed another song to tape. The band’s first proper LP, Light Up Gold, is a dynamic and diverse foray into the back alleys of the American DIY underground. Bright guitars swirl serpentine over looping, groovy post-punk bass lines and drums that border on robotic precision. While the initial rawness of the band’s early output remains, the songwriting has gracefully evolved. Primary wordsmiths A. Savage and Austin Brown combine for a dynamic lyrical experience, one part an erudite overflow of ideas, the other an exercise in laid-back observation. Lyrically dense, the poetry is in how it flows along with the melody, often times as locked-in as the rhythm section.
“This record is for the over-socialized victims of the 1990’s ‘you can be anything you want’, Nickelodeon-induced lethargy that ran away from home not out of any wide-eyed big city daydream, but just out of a subconscious return to America’s scandalous origin,” writes Savage in the album’s scratched-out liner notes. Recorded over a few days in an ice-box practice space, Light Up Gold is equally indebted to Krautrock, The Fall, and a slew of contemporaries like Tyvek and Eddy Current Suppression Ring.
Though made up of Texan transplants, Parquet Courts are a New York band. Throw out the countless shallow Brooklyn bands of the blasé 2000’s: Light Up Gold is a conscious effort to draw from the rich culture of the city - the bands like Sonic Youth, Bob Dylan, and the Velvet Underground that are not from New York, but of it. A panoramic landscape of dilapidated corner-stores and crowded apartments is superimposed over bare-bones Americana, leaving little room for romance or sentiment. It’s punk, it’s American, it’s New York… it’s the color of something you were looking for.
With SHARK TOYS long-gestating LP finally out, the band have prepared a very special set of songs for the show...channeling equal parts Desperate Bicycles, Subway Sect, Tronics and the early Flying Nun catalogue. It was easy, it was cheap, you should go do it too! Form a band! What's YOUR excuse??
Inspired by the honesty of contemporaries like Mike Hunchback, the DIY aesthetic of early Thermals and Nobunny albums, and all the poppiest melodies of her favorite singles, stoned songwriter Colleen Green creates the original pop soundtrack to all the days you spend in a daze.
Green's strength is in application and in doing so she builds a familiar sound; at the same time it's unlike anything you've heard before. Her songs run the gamut in musical styles, from Ramones rip-off pop punk to dreamy stoned drone to getting-ready-for-da-club-shit.
I know a couple of things about Colleen Green.
One thing that's for sure: she's a songwriting phenomenon. She sings lovely, catchy, fuzzy songs that range from 80s pop goulash to psychedelic drone; from 90s power punk to homemade Sebadoh-style songs of heartache. Think of her as a sort of female Daniel Johnston, with her at home making comics, armed with a seemingly unlimited amount of well-composed songs, her lamentations on out-of-reach love, her self-medication, her bedroom recordings. She proudly displays her musical heroes' influences on her sleeve. She plays live shows alone on stage with only an electric guitar and a drum machine to accompany her.
Is she a genius? Who knows.
So let's get down to the bare bone facts. These are the things I know about Colleen Green to be true: Colleen Green sprouted up some years ago in Massachusetts, deep within the forests of the Merrimack Valley. She was raised by a loving family that brought her up on a steady diet of delicious oldies and sugary cereals. Colleen Green went to school, learned how to speak the language of the streets, and by second grade was rapping on school grounds. By the age of 11 she had discovered punk rock and never looked back. From that point on she was obsessed with music.
Green moved to Oakland, California in 2008 in search of hot sun, good bud, good buds, and nice boys. Fortunately, five of her best friends decided to join her, the best of which being Kayla. Along with their friend Steve O, Green and Kayla created the Full House House in West Oakland and invited countless great bands from across the nation and world to play in their living room. Kayla can be seen on the front cover of the "Green One" 7", and is also one of two main characters in Green's comic strip, "Real Shit Daily".
Recently, Green retreated to a cave in Los Angeles, where she can now be found sleeping, smoking, baking magical treats, and staring at the wall. Within two lonely months, Colleen had written and recorded Milo Goes to Compton; within five she had released both that tape and the 4 Loko 2 Kayla CD-R EP as well. Both of these albums have been in heavy rotation since the day they arrived in my mailbox.
Anyway, that is just the beginning of the Colleen Green story. If you can, get to know her. And text her. You will love her
"A brutal gem for the real indie club bound to blow up speakers and inspire many bands out there to get way more creative (or violent) with their re-appropriation of 1960s Girls in the Garage tropes." --20 Jazz Funk Greats
"Like coffee for your ears." --Pitchfork
"Slightly snotty but totally cool fuzz pop music." --Neu Magazine
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