40 Years of Noe

2010-2012 were very good years!



In 2010, I started listening to more podcasts. NPR’s All Songs Considered was my favorite. In the Spring that year they played a song called “Everlasting Light” by The Black Keys. It was so catchy that we had that song playing at our Wedding later that year. The whole album, “Brothers” is pretty amazing. Just like 2010 was amazing! Wedding bells, college courses and brain surgery took place that year but The Black Keys got me through it all.


In 2011, I went through a depression period. I had a relapse from my surgery and had a grand mal seizure, suffered post par-tam depression after the wedding and dropped out of college. We moved to a new apartment as well. But PJ Harvey’s record, “Let England Shake” was my cd of choice. I played it all the time. It was such an addictive sound. I wish she appeared more on my list of favorite albums. But this one definitely was worthy of the list.


In 2012, I began a new journey of my life. I started running again. My favorite record of the year 2012 was by a band called Japandroids. I don’t care what anyone says about this but it friggin rules! 2 guys only. A drummer and a guitarist. They just kill it! Drinking anthems mixed with the Husker Du type of melodies and patterns. The album begins and ends with the sound of fireworks. I listened to them when I would go for a jog in the morning, while training for 5k’s and triathlons. It makes me feel alive. It’s a garage band that sounds BIG and proof that 2 twenty something guys from Canada can perform shock therapy on your mood!


That’s all for now!!!


Twenty Favorite Albums of 2013……Number 19

Artist: Crocodiles
Album: Crimes of Passion


This was an interesting discovery. My sister and I went to the club Metro in Chicago back in May to see a band called Japandroids. Crocodiles was the opening act. I never heard of them before. But I must admit that they had a pretty captivating presence on stage. Their sound is like noise rock mixd with psychedelia. Guitar feedbacks, experimental sounds and good fuzzy hooks.

These guys are from San Diego, California. Yet, I can hear some Lou Reed’s Brooklyn influences among their styles. The bands Jesus and Mary Chain, R.E.M. and some of those other 80’s post punk junk groups work their way into influencing their musical mix. Simple songs with a California sun vibe. But a lot of crunching guitars and fun choruses are scattered all over the record, Crimes of Passion. It’s only a spec longer than thirty minutes long too. So, this disc gets right to the point. It doesn’t waste any time. Plus tambourines and pianos contribute nicely to a deliciously passionate rock album that just feels good on my ears. Give it a listen!


Who the HECK are the Japandroids????

Metro is a tiny concert hall on Clark Street in Chicago that holds special events to a variety of emerging rock bands and various types of musicians. The Metro was first opened up back in 1982. It holds about 1000 people. There’s the main floor and the balcony.

I have been to this place about a half a dozen times. There are some unique memories every time I go. I have seen artists such as Robert Pollard and Neko Case here. On Tuesday June 11th, I went here again with my sister and saw a band called Japandroids. I love the marquee and the Clark Street atmosphere we pass through as we approach the building.

But….Japandroids? Who are they? What is it?

It’s a Canadian rock duo from Vancouver. The group consists of two guys, Brian King (guitar, vocals) and David Prowse (drums, vocals). That’s it! The name Japandroids came from two other fake band name ideas: “Japanese Scream”, suggested David. “Pleasure Droids” , thought Brian. They decided to combine the name. There ya go!


They freakin rock out, plain and simple. Each song of theirs sounds like anthems about life, friends, drinking and freedom. They are fun to sing along to and dance to and even run to. This band makes a lot of sound for just two guys and this album they are promoting, “Celebration Rock” is great, upbeat and rocking. I fell in love with it so much that I dubbed it my album pick of the year 2012. (see an earlier post)

I stumbled upon them in the Spring of 2012 and found myself really getting hooked into their style. They may be the most fun band of the century so far. Screaming guitar hooks will rock your world. Rock on. They make jokes on stage and get the crowd going right away.

It was a hot and sweaty night at the Metro club. We sat upstairs in the small balcony, which is not easy to do. A waitress served us a couple of beers right away and so we were all set. We had to wait in line outside early in order to avoid standing on the floor all night and hurting my neck and back. I’m getting “too old” for that.

While we waited outside getting attacked by bugs and trying to cool off with a cold sprite in my hand, I see a tall guy with a five o clock shadow, curly hair, a white t shirt and skinny jeans walk by and I realize, hey that’s Brian. You know the lead singer/guitar player of Japandroids! That’s cool dude!

So it was a really explosive, sing a long and cheerful night of solid guitar riffs and Jon Bonham-esque drumming patterns that exploded like fireworks all over the stage!!! Although there were some comparisons to Lars Ulrich of Metallica jokes floating around that night too!

I recommend checking these 2 dudes out. If ya like The Replacements, Husker Du or even let’s say Dinosaur Jr. Bob Mould’s guitar styles tend to come to mind. Anyway, the light show, fog machine, the crowd surfers, the hot sweaty environment all made it a night worth rejoicing out loud and embracing life together, especially a brother and sister night out on the town.



2012….MUSIC….A Year in Review Before the Grammy’s Ruin It


A lot of great music was released this year and I got exposed to a bunch of new bands, cool new songs, albums and reunions. The end of the world is coming soon, so I better post my favorite songs, artists and records right now before we meet our demise.

The Grammy nominations are in. I can’t say I agree with any of them honestly. Sorry. I have my own personal tastes. I have picked my own list of artists/songs/records that are most definitely NOT on the Grammy list. Why oh why does this award show annoy me practically every year? Thank God I am entitled to like whatever I want to listen to. I need this soap box and it’s where I will voice my opinion.

Grammy Award Shows only care about the Top 40 artists. The lesser known ones deserve more attention too. Mainstream music is fine and all but I get frustrated with artists like Taylor Swift, Miley Cirus and Kanye West. People adore them and I don’t know why. They’re a bunch of phonies and drama queens.

Talent is important. Song writing skills are important. Being able to play an instrument of some sort would also be of help. What about singing talent? Singing from your heart man! Seems like a lot of the songs coming out nowadays have singers employing voice synthesizers. What is with those stupid things? I hate those! Sing like you have a pair or just stop!

Anyway, I want to focus on the artists this year that made a difference for me. Those catchy songs that really made me pay attention (NO it was NOT that song, “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jespen? Whatever…..bubble gum pop music that’s only purpose is to “sell out” and just sound hip, fun and catchy. That’s just not what I am into.

So…..I have it kind of split into 2 categories here:

One are my favorite songs and the other are my favorite records to come out this year.

Let me begin with the tunes!


So here are my 5 favorite tunes from 2012 (and why)

Gotye…..Easy Way Out
(This Australian artist was new to my ears this year and I found myself really digging this tune. It reminds me of a Beck-style tune that packs a punch in like 2 minutes)
Now, Now…..Prehistoric
(grungy, pretty and rocking like I haven’t heard from a band in awhile. Also they’re a great trio from Minneapolis. I like it when girls play lead guitar and vocals and actually have a strong presence)
(They’re a British band and they’re pretty unique. This track is a single that’s not a part of an album. It packs quite a punch! 90’s style garage punk in a Smashing Pumpkins meets Dinosaur Jr fashion)
Neil Young and Crazy Horse…..Walk Like A Giant
(When these veteran musicians jam together, amazing guitar riffs and magic noise happens, and this is quite an earthquake of a song from Psychedelic Pill and I think that it can stand the test of time. Go Neil!
Dinosaur Jr…..Watch The Corners (This is an amazing song. A chugging metal crunch. J Mascis comes up with massive guitar riffs that rattle your teeth but can still fill it in with a great melody and an almost folk kinda feeling despite your throbbing eardrums. Always unique. Love it)



5…..Twins by Ty Segall
(Great melodies, grungy, edgy, 60’s elements, excellent with headphones. I happened to stumble upon this a few months ago and was just blown away)

4…..Synthetica by Metric
(An Indie, electro, pop band. Great lead singer named Emily and a fun kind of 70’s and new wave sound. It’s pretty original, experimental and all the songs are catchy and don’t all sound the same like some bands (Muse….ahem!) Plus as a bonus, Lou Reed appears on one of the tracks called Wanderlust! Explosive fun for sure!


3…..Koi No Yokan by Deftones
( I first heard these guys about 7 years ago with a record called White Pony. It was good and had a Tool kind of sound but faster and more of an Alice in Chains sound. But this new one is wonderful. Type O Negative has an album called October Rust that has this eternal Autumn sound to it. The Deftones make this album a “mixed trip hop with thrash, melodic vocals with crushing reverb, and yes, pretty with ugly.” But for them it evokes a sense of eternal darkness.)

2…..End of Daze by Dum Dum Girls
(I am so addicted to this EP. Soooo much happens in this awesome 18 minutes. Pure joy. Almost makes me cry. These ladies just rock it out. However, it’s so soft and pretty. I keep listening to this one over and over and over again. It’s so dreamy and it shines like a dirty penny held up to the sun)

1…..Celebration Rock by Japandroids
(My favorite record of the year 2012. I don’t care what anyone says about this but it friggin rules! 2 guys only. A drummer and a guitarist. They just kill it! Drinking anthems mixed with the Husker Du type of melodies and patterns. The album begins and ends with the sound of fireworks. I listen to them when I go for a jog in the morning. It makes me feel alive. It’s a garage band that sounds BIG and proof that 2 twenty something guys from Canada can perform shock therapy on your mood!)

Well that’s it….have a nice day!