Friday, March 30, 2007

Matt Tong makes me wish I had rhythm

Recently I've been rediscovering albums that I used to listen to a lot, but then put away for a few months to avoid overuse. The other day it was The Constantines' Tournament of Hearts (which caused some assuredly frightening scenes of blissing out whilst piloting an urban assault vehicle). And this morning, Bloc Party's Silent Alarm was blasting during the commute and we reminisced about what it was that drew us to them in the first place, and how in some ways we still prefer that cd to the new one. We both agreed that the yelping vocals that helped to define them as post-punk and allowed them to avoid an emo label (fairly or not) was a highlight on Silent Alarm, but especially it was the drumming. Always the drumming.

So to start off the playlist this week, I opened with a track randomly selected from Silent Alarm, and it just happens to be one that really showcases Matt Tong's drumming genius. I challenge you to listen to this song and not wish that your mom would let you get a drum kit:

Like Eating Glass- Bloc Party
Excitable boy - Warren Zevon
Cracked - the Jesus and Mary Chain
Saints - the Breeders
This old house - Kris Demeaner
Surfin USA - the Jesus and Mary Chain
Midnight jam - Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros
The infanta - the Decemberists
Let's get married - the Proclaimers
Return from planet egalica - Dubblestandart
Well looky here, two JAMC songs. Matt must be a fan too. I wonder if he's as excited about the Coachella reunion as I am?
Big excitement in the Zombie household, as we are going to take in Music for Contortionist tonight, and fully expect to be blown away, as we have been with all of Sage Theatre's productions this year. And we thought they had reached their peak with Trainspotting! We were wrong.
The kid starts spring break at noon today, so I anticipate that there will be a deluge of sleeping in happening around this place next week, by the teenager and cat half of the household anyway.
On one of my days off next week, I am dragging her to the Uptown to watch Radiant City, a new film from Gary Burns and Jim Brown (yes that Jim Brown - host of the Calgary Eye Opener on CBC radio). Check out the trailer on the link.
Whether you are planning to lounge in your uber-cool loft downtown or schlupp around your woefully suburban house like me, have a beautiful weekend. Turn it up and feel the rhythm.


Anonymous said...

My favorite Matt Tong moment from silent alarm is She's Hearing Voices, I've always been a fan of John Bonham style pounding.

John Mutford said...

I ceased caring what Rolling Stone magazine had to say a while ago. But this post made me think of all of their issues that ranked guitarists. Why they need to recycle that piece every five years or so is beyond me- they always end up with Hendrix at the top anyway. But have they ever done a drummer issue? If so, did Matt Tong place? Who else would place- John Bonham, Keith Moon, Lars and maybe Mick Fleetwood would be givens.

Anonymous said...

John - Dave Grohl, Stewart Copeland and don't forget Neil Pert.

John Mutford said...

See I've heard plenty of people talk about Neil Pert but I just get so annoyed with Rush that I can even bother to listen to the drumming. Agree with the others though.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Fearless, John, you guys know a million times more about drum styles than I do, so I'm not even going to attempt to venture into this discussion, but it would be pretty educational for me if I listened to all those guys back to back. I should give that a try to see how they fare against my gold standard - Matt Tong.
You're right though, John, Rolling Stone is a dinosaur. And Rush is coming to town; want me to score you a ticket hahaha?

Anonymous said...

John - I agree Rush, while technically brilliant are rather bland. I forgot Charlie Watts and Reni on my list.

Barbara - Sorry to tell you this, but some of those guys would destroy Matt Tong with one hand tied behind their back.

Dale said...

I live in a suburb but one only slightly less ridiculous than the ones pictured in the trailer although there are many of them nearby. I've got just enough soul to keep the people nearest me from going straight to hell! Looks interesting.

Enjoy the play at least as much as I enjoyed your playlist (have to look a couple of them up though)!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I have no doubt they would, Fearless, and I readily admit to absolutely no knowledge of what constitutes good drumming. I know I would personally never have enough focus to drum properly myself. I just know that I get really excited by Matt's drumming; it's the complex rhythms that appeal to me.

I live in the suburbs too, Dale, much to the shame of my teenager, but am fortunate enough to live in a mature community with lots of trees (somewhat of an anomoly here on the bald-assed prairie). I am pretty pumped to see Radiant City though; Gary Burns has done some intriguing films.
You are a soul-man, bro, never let your neighbours forget it either!

Allison said...

Rush needs to have their Canadian citizenship revoked, I think.

I'll admit to knowing nothing about drumming either Barb, and I argee its the rhythms that get me when listening to Matt. I've been spining Silent Alarm a lot lately, especially with "Like Eating Glass" and "Poineers" on repeat.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I don't know, Al - Rush have their place in the Canadian landscape. They are one of the last havens for affectionados of the blue-collar classic rock genre. Not my cup of tea, but I acknowledge its right to exist.

Silent Alarm sure stands up, doesn't it?

Allison said...

Fair enough. I guess we can keep everyone. Celine too.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

hahaha I don't know if I'd go that far!

justacoolcat said...

Contortionists scare me.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Just A - which is scarier: contortionist, clown, or mime?

Danny Tagalog said...

Re: your list and other recently published blog lists - I didn't know that Strummer made such an impact in North America.....

Good discovery...

Barbara Bruederlin said...

He did make a big impact here, Danny, both with the Clash of course, whom I remember being gobsmacked by as a kid, and also with The Mescaleros, although they were certainly less well known here.

In our house, we stop to remember Joe Strummer every Dec 22.