September 28, 2010

Mondo Topless is Freaking Out!

Mondo Topless have a classic, timeless garage rock sound with simple hooks, catchy guitar riffs, and a driving power pop beat that moves the songs along at breakneck pace. Theirs isn't music for the sedentary listener. This is the stuff that extreme living is made of, the stuff that lies underneath the world of melodic punk rock.

So it is that their fifth full length release, Freaking Out, is balls out attack on other people's songs. The opening track, "Nothing Can Bring Me Down" (Twilighters) launches a staggering, non-stop atttack which doesn't let up until you get to the last, and perhaps most obscure, song "Little Clown" (Witch). From The Electric Prunes to Camper van Beethoven, Mondo Topless take these songs and amp them up with a garagified twist. Garage fans will be hooked from floor-stomping, fuzzed out "I'm Gonna Find A Cave" (The Banana Splits), to the sixties based freakbeat of "Get Me To The World On Time" (The Electric Prunes).

You definitely won't be bored by this fun garage album that blasts through a dozen tracks.

Mondo Topless -- Swalbr (Cream)

Mondo Topless - I'm Gonna Find a Cave

September 26, 2010

Modcast #178: Featuring Keith Slettedahl lead singer of The 88

Welcome to Mr. Suave's Mod Mod World. This week the mod world is full of wonderfully pure pop music. What a show, what a show, what a show. From new to old, from The 88 to Manual Scan to the Small Faces, the whole show is packed with great music.

And a great interview with The 88's own front man, Keith Slettedahl who is the band's lead singer and main songwriter. If you're not familiar with The 88 you should be. They are a great power pop band that is carving out a really nice original sound for themselves. Rather than be just a derivative sort of soundalike band, they've incorporated influences from a lot of classic sixties bands like The Kinks, The Beatles, and The Zombies into a very modern, very original, pop sound that is all their own. You might also know them from the movie and TV work they've done, including recording the theme song to NBC's the Community. I've got some of their older stuff, as well as a taste of their brand new album appropriately titled The 88 which officially comes out next Tuesday, Sept. 28, but is already available through iTunes. Pick it up, you won't be disappointed.

The interview comes in two parts. In part one we talk about The 88's work this past year as the backing band for mod legend Ray Davies, how they write their songs and the sound of their new album. In the second half you'll find out how the band knows Danny Benair of Three O'Clock fame, some of Keith's other musical influences and what they're up to next.

Rounding it all out I've got a track that Bart Mendoza from Manual Scan sent me special for the show, a rare live track of Manual Scan backing up Squire's Anthony Meynell in 1985. If you missed my interview with Bart head on over to and look up modcast #177.

The 88 - website  - Myspace

The 88 -- Haunt You (2005)
Orange Peels -- Something In You (2005)
Franz Ferdinand -- Send Him Away (2009)
Supergrass -- Sad Girl (2005)
The 88 -- Center Of The Sun (2010)
The 88 -- Go Go Go (2008)
The Who -- Circles (1965)
The Kinks -- I Gotta Move (1964)
Small Faces - Sha La La La Lee (1966)
Manual Scan w/Anthony Meynell of Squire -- Walking Down The King's Road (live, 1985)

Download the podcast

The 88 -- Coming Home

The Making of Love Is The Thing

September 18, 2010

Modcast #177 Featuring Bart Mendoza of The Shambles & Manual Scan

Welcome to Mr. Suave's Mod Mod World. I'm taking you back to the early days of the US mod scene this week with some great music including a couple of really cool live tracks from The Bangles & The Three O'Clock.

Even cooler than that is that I got a chance to interview Bart Mendoza. He's been making and shaking the mod scene since the late 70s when he started Manual Scan, and then later as member of The Shambles. With a resume like that it's pretty clear that power pop is in his blood. In addition to his musical prowess Bart is a one-stop mod promotional guru, and a walking encyclopedia on the US mod scene.

The interview is long, but worth it for those of you interested in the history of the mod scene, and for anyone who likes Manual Scan and The Shambles. Bart talks about both bands, as well as about his work behind the scenes as was one of the folks that kept the mod scene going, producing shows, publishing fanzines, organizing rallies and events.

The Shambles website
The Shambles on Myspace
Manual Scan on Myspace
The Che Underground

The Shambles -- It's A Mod Mod World (2008)
The Bangles -- Pushin' Too Hard (live, 1983)
The Three O'Clock -- I Go Wild (live, 1983)
Interview with Bart Mendoza Pt. 1
The Shambles -- Nothing Can Be Everything (1996)
Manual Scan -- For Those (1983)
Interview with Bart Mendoza Pt. 2
The Shambles -- Leavin' Here (2008)
Manual Scan -- Jungle Beat (1985)
The Event -- She's Our Girl (1989)
The Jetz -- Just A Picture (1984)
The Question -- Stare You Down (1983)

Download podcast

The Shambles -- The Color Swirl (XEWT-TV 1998)

Manual Scan -- Come See Me

September 5, 2010

From The Vaults: Modcast #39: I Dig Your Mind

Once more into the vault my friends, once more into the vault. Step back in time, to a time when the modcast was young and fresh. Take a giant step outside your current listening constraints and journey with me all the way back to those dangerous winter days of 2007. I've opened up the vaults and dusted off a classic modcast that I think you'll enjoy. Again.
Download it here.

It's the 39th installment of the world's favorite weekly mod show, and this episode packs a punch to be sure. Questions? E-mail me at

The Rage -- Looking for You
The Gwen Stacys -- Beatboys (in the sun)
The Crowd -- The Right Time
The Crooks -- Bangin' My Head
Nervous Breakdown -- I Dig Your Mind
The Pretty Things -- Midnight to Six Man
Mooney Suzuki -- My Dear Persephone
The Pinstripes -- Mad Scientist
Save Ferris -- Superspy
Captain Sensible -- The Power of Love
The Producers -- What's He Got?

The Producers -- What's He Got?

Save Ferris -- The World is New

Download this modcast.

September 2, 2010

The Ruiners Bring The Party With Happy Birthday Bitch

I've seen the new Ruiners disk described as bubblegum-garage, and all I can think is that must be some bad-ass nasty gum. When you chew on The Ruiners new release Happy Birthday Bitch you will surely get a taste explosion. You'll taste some grungy, fuzzy, glammy honky-tonk garage rock from beginning to end.

The Ruiners deliver an album that is straight forward bluesy, garage rock ala MC5, not surprising when you realize that The Ruiners are from Detroit and are channeling the Motor City quintets sharpest points. The band isn't pretentious and doesn't pretend to be mature or sophisticated. The songs are more about lust than love, more bad deeds than good, and mostly just vehicles for blistering guitar solos -- "Charlie Lane Ate My Brain" -- and rockin' out as in the title track, "Fix That Broken Halo" and "Beer Time".

If you have a penchant for eighties styled, sixties influenced, garage rock ala Gravedigger V, The Chesterfield Kings, or more glammish garage punk oriented bands like The Droogs or The Groovy Ghoulies then you'll dig The Ruiners.

The Ruiners -- Charlie Lane Ate My Brain

The Ruiners -- Sugar Buzz