We all have bands we should definitely like, but for various reasons never really gave the chance. Perhaps you were listening to different stuff when they were at their best, or perhaps their back catalogue has become too daunting to dive into. Or, the constant flow of new music makes it hard to find time to check out older stuff. A prime example of this for me is Fastbacks. This is a band with a poppy punk sound (or vice versa) that is right in my wheelhouse, yet I don’t own any music from.
So when Bachelor Records recently dropped us a note on how proud they were to release a live album from one of their favorite bands, my first response was a sense of guilt. But it was the positive, motivating kind of guilt, because it made me actually check out the recording of this 1986 show in the band’s hometown of Seattle. And wouldn’t you know, this one clicks with me in spite of the first two songs not sounding particularly good; the opening of the show wasn’t recorded on the multitrack, so audience recordings have been used instead. The rest of the record, newly remixed but not fixed or overdubbed, sounds decidedly better, and I finally understand why this is a band that I should’ve checked out long ago. This truly is some catchy punky powerpop, and the voice of singer and bass player Kim Warnick is great. And the 15 song set, including several covers like Good Lovin’ by The Young Rascals, and a raucous version of Somebody To Love by Jefferson Airplane, offers a great introduction to the band’s discography. The video of the show is pretty cool as well, and the static video recording in combination with the dance moves of the audience offers a somewhat unnerving time capsule to a different era.
So yeah, thanx to Bachelor Records, I finally spend some time with Fastbacks, and I’m in! Help me out, which one of their records should I definitely check out?