VINYL VIEWS: WEEK OF 10/11/21
“Hello, Boils & Ghouls! SPOOPY VINYL VIEWS is our CREEPY blog where we feature album recommendations from our “SCREAM TEAM” – SHAYNE “THE SKINWALKER” & JAXON “STILL AT LARGE”, and also from our GUEST UNDERTAKERS. This week we hear from CONOR “HALLOWEEN PUN” JANSEN & “SI-MOAN”!
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Conor “Halloween Pun” Jansen and Unearthly Si-moan (best pun I can think of for Simón) are two ghoulish monsters who live together in an evil apartment. Conor works at a high school that is seemingly not haunted (yet) and Halloween is his favorite holiday. Simón looks remarkably like the Florida Skunk Ape and they’ve never been photographed together so draw your own conclusions.
Album: Count Three & Pray
Now, if you’re already familiar with this song you may be wondering what the hell I’m talking about here. Bear with me. I get mixed responses when I say this song, to me, is a good Halloween track. I get it. Perhaps you’re one of those who would respond: “This is a love song from the film Top Gun and not even somewhat related to Halloween.” Fair points. My defense is simple: it’s just kinda creepy. Not the lyrics, which are typical love song lyrics. For me, the synths are, for lack of a more musically accurate word, goopy. They sound thick and weird and creepy to me in a way that conjures Angelo Badalamenti and getting stoned at a haunted carnival. I love this song, and it feels absolutely eerie and skeeves me out. I don’t need a better defense than that. This is music, not debate club. Consider how eerie “Blue Velvet” sounds when you hear it in Blue Velvet, or “Wonderful, Wonderful” when it plays in The X-Files. Sometimes an innocuous song just screams “inexplicably creepy” and for me, this is one of those songs, and I love it for that. I don’t know if it helps that I’ve never seen Top Gun.
Check out the track Take My Breath Away
2: Kenny Loggins “Highway to the Danger Zone,”
No, I’m just kidding.
Gorillaz were a formative experience for me in middle school for two reasons. First, they shaped my music taste. Before Gorillaz, my music taste was just stuff my dad shared with me or random singles I liked on the radio, mixed with like five Green Day songs and the Ramones first album. Gorillaz were that first band that made me start doing research, finding new artists, branching into new genres, appreciating the crafting of not just a song but an album. They’ll always hold a special place in my heart not only for the other artists they’ve gotten me into (from MF DOOM to Swell Maps), but their immense impact on my movie taste. For instance, Demon Days, the album that got me into them, opens with a sample from Dawn of the Dead, and Gorillaz have made numerous references to the Romero trilogy (as well as other horror classics) throughout their existence. This inspired me to check out Dawn of the Dead (now my favorite film of all time) and truly started my lifelong love of horror films. Here from their debut is “M1A1,” a song that opens with a long sample from Day of the Dead and builds up into an immensely fun punk-infused track. I include this not only because of its eerie opening but as a tribute to the entire 2001-2007 run the Gorillaz had. Gorillaz, Demon Days, G-Sides and D-Sides along with the DVDs and the old website all had so many loving homages to horror classics.
Check out the track M1 A1
Artist: Have A Nice Life
Conor’s a big fan of Have a Nice Life. Deathconsciousness is one of his favorite albums of all time because of its haunting mix of genres, mixing post-punk, industrial, shoegaze and more into one beautiful, sad album. And just look at the name of that album and tell me that’s not Halloweeny. You can’t. Conor likes Dan Barrett’s other project Giles Corey as well, and plays both of them a bit during the Halloween season. Hinterkaifeck from Giles Corey is named after a mysterious and horrifically gruesome murder that happened in the 1920s. Can’t get much more Halloween than unsolved mass murders on early 1900s German farms, I assume. However, if Conor were picking this track he may pick something off of that album, but he’s not picking. I am. And y’know what’s a million times scarier to me than unsolved murder mysteries? Not getting my food when I want it. That’s why I’m picking “There Is No Food” as my spooky track. Many a-time have I awoken from a horrific nightmare about being hungry only to realize that I am, in fact, hungry. What’s more, Conor won’t always even come give me more food because, according to him, having the bowl half full is “enough” and I can just eat the food I haven’t touched yet instead of begging for more. You can see why I have nightmares.
.Check out the track There Is No Food
Shayne is switching it up in 2021 and bringing us his custom playlists each week. Check out here or come into the store and listen to them in our Sounderator (tricked out 1940’s refrigerator that you sit in while enjoying a tasty selection of tunes).
Shayne’s playlist this week is titled Spoopy 2
Peeling yet more charcuterie from, well never you mind where from… Thanks to Still At Large for the assist!
Artist: Yoko Ono
Album: Yes, I’m A Witch
This album could easily be played at a Halloween dance party thrown by a coven of witches. In this project we see a long list of really cool artists remixing and covering Yoko Ono songs, including but not limited to Peaches, Le Tigre, Porcupine Tree, DJ Spooky, The Apples In Stereo, Cat Power, The Polyphonic Spree, and The Flaming Lips. The spooky element comes from the tracks that are chosen, as multiple of the tracks feature ties to witchcraft and just have a general slight eeriness to them. I know people often hate on Yoko for one reason or another, but I personally believe that she made some really cool compositions, and these new versions paint her work in a more modern light. Check out the intro track, Witch Shocktronica Into, which gives you a idea of how different these interpretations are from the original, as well as fitting our Halloween theme.
.Check out the track Witch Shocktronica Intro
Artist: Ngozi Family
Album: Day Of Judgement
Check out the track Day Of Judgement
Artist: Gangsta Pat
Album: Deadly Verses
This album is just evil. Deadly Verses is one of my favorite Memphis hip hop albums. The samples on this album mostly come from horror movies, giving it an undeniably Halloween feel. The lyrics contain many references to the devil, alongside the other common themes of the genre. If you are a fan of southern hip hop, this is an essential listen.
Check out the track Deadly Verses
How Do I Order Music (Or Other Things)?
Val’s is now open again (safely)! Bring a face mask and we will sanitize your hands on the way in. Social distancing, of course. Val’s halla has worked hard over this quarantine period to launch its Online Store which has thousands of titles for you to choose from. We will continue to add inventory everyday, but just let us know what you are looking for! We are happy to look through our off-line inventory of over 50,000 titles to see what we have for you. Also, we place orders with our distributor every Monday which means we see them in our store by Tuesday (most of the time). We sell records (as well as turntables), CDs, cassettes, 8-tracks, DVDs and more. To get started, you can Click Here to access the Online Store, or fill out the form below to let us know what you are looking for.
What About Delivery?
Val’s is offering Curbside Pickup and No-Contact Delivery Service to customers who live within a 5-mile radius of the Oak Park Arts District. Orders can also be shipped to customers outside that radius for a flat fee of $5. Order as much as you want – still $5 shipping! Stay safe and be well!