Cheshi – Bug Dance

I’m obsessed with guitar pedals. Pedal makers. They’re weird.

They’re weird.

Like the back back room guys in the guitar shop.

So this recommendation came through the fucking fuzziest of click carrot rabbit hole weirdness. Five or six posts deep on IG, copped initially from Sinasoid (they make cables and other audio ‘couture’), finally landing on Bookworm Effects and they’re Laughing Man optical tremolo pedal. [pictured]


For those unfamiliar, Laughing Man is one of the greatest J.D. Salinger short stories and also happens to be my favorite of his.  This tremolo is really sweet sounding too. Gonna add this to my Want list on

Halfway down Bookworm’s feed, I found a screenshot of the Cheshi EP and curious, went searching.


Okay, Cheshi is Indie Rock fronted by singer-guitarist Ashli Cheshire, channeling Johnette Napolitano, supported by a thunderous rhythm section who propel each dynamic shift in the songs with bombastic gusto.

Below is the song “Bug Dance” from their latest release.

Check ’em out at

Neurosis – Live at Union Transfer

I saw Neurosis in 1997 when they were featured on the second stage for the Oz Fest, touring Through Silver and Blood and it was life changing.

Yeah, it was hot. In the parking lot of Mile High Stadium. Black top cooked the gum of my All Stars. I got dared into having my nipple pierced, cuz, well, that was a thing people did at the time.

“Locust Star” was the song that made me a convert. The outro was decidedly more tribal with Steve and Noah and Scott banging the shit out of floor toms. I think they might have only played three songs.

After their set I got to hang out with them. We had beers and smoked cigarettes. They made fun of me for getting my nipple pierced. Well-deserved.

We had beers and smoked cigarettes. They made fun of me for getting my nipple pierced. Well-deserved.

They made fun of me for getting my nipple pierced. Well-deserved.


I’ve been following Neurosis and their off shoots for over twenty years and they never cease to leave me in awe. From the last show with Josh Graham on visuals at the Fox Theater in Oakland to a New Years Show at the Great American Music Hall on Dec. 31st 2007 with Saviors and Earth, the band expands and hones their sound with each outing.

This video/performance from Union Transfer is remarkable. Noah Landis mastered the audio and I’m hoping they make this an official release because it’d be worth documenting on vinyl.


Street Sects – And I Grew Into Ribbons

Musical. Orchestral. Melodious. Cinematic.

Street Sects are none of these descriptors.

For that I am thankful.

Industrial grind with a little bit of hype. Abrasive. Poignant.

With any luck these dudes will fade back into relative obscurity, maybe only 20K views on YT.

Then they can continue making the soundtrack to my adult life.

Craig Finn – God In Chicago

craig_finn_sq.jpgCraig Finn has cut a swath through beer-soaked halls–playing on six-inch risers often never higher than six feet–for the last twenty odd years of his career with the band, The Hold Steady.

Course he’s had his solo work too. Equally impressive to be sure. And no, his music isn’t quite as dour as his photo. At least, not all of it. Shit, there’s a lot to unpack in his lyrics…

I’m not the only lazy music fan who’s been likening his rambling story-telling song lyrics to a modern Raymond Carver weened on Springsteen and Black Flag with a guitar. He’s consistent and reliable and undoubtedly an incredible amount of thought and care in each turn of phrase as evidenced by the narrative film with collaborator, Kris Merc on his latest contribution, “God In Chicago.”

Okay, well, see, it’s a story about a guy and a girl and drug deal/road trip.

But with Finn, it’s always more.

He’s a master of subtext, and his subtext is all in the gut.

Check out the video on The Nowness:

Finn is playing with Japandroids this Sat. March 11 at the Music Box in San Diego.