Happy New Year One and All!
2013 all done. Eight releases – our most ever in a year. 2014 promises to be another year. If the good lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise. You know what I mean.
I am not yet ready to go on the record with all our secret plans, but so far I think we will have a Jeff Kelly/Green Pajamas album or two, a Jim of Seattle album, a Queen Annes reissue, a new Tom Dyer album or two, the second album by The OF. But enough of that. Let’s get down to business.
To start off year 2014, we are thrilled to feature as our Album of the Month, Rusty Willoughby with his latest release Anti. I really like it. It made my Top 10 for the year (don’t count too closely). I’ve nearly known Rusty since the Dwindles and Pure Joy, but mostly just as ships passing. I when I was cutting “No Lou” in November, guitar star Scott Sutherland brought me over a couple of Rusty’s discs. I finally got time to listen and I find them excellent, particularly his latest Anti. That we shall feature this month along with a couple other selections from other releases. You can get Rusty’s stuff from iTunes, CDbaby and other fine places. Do so!
Photo at right is Rusty today with Scott Sutherland.
1. Dream Song 29
2. Feel The Jets
3. You Changed
4. Clear Cold Light
5. Never Gonna Get It
6. Night Field
7. Back In School (from Adult Soft Record)
8. No One (from Rusty Willoughby)
9. Too Early (from Cobirds Unite)
Anti sung, played recorded and mixed by Rusty Willoughby.
Otherwise, Kirk Bentley sings lead vocal on “Never Gonna Get It “and plays synthesizer on “Never Gonna Get It” and “You Changed.”
“Dream Song 29” words and partial readings by John Berryman from his poem Dream Song 29.
Recorded on Vashon Island Fall 2012-Spring 2013
Mastered by Johnny Sangster at Crackle & Pop!
Painting and graphic design by Rusty Willoughby
© & (p) Fatbald Music. All Songs by Rusty Willoughby
Except “Never Gonna Get It” by Kirk Bentley & Rusty Willoughby and “Dream Song 29” by John Berryman
Don’t know the credits on the last three songs, ask Rusty.
“Rusty Willoughby is one of Seattle’s unsung alternative veterans. The vocalist/guitarist was an early favorite of the Emerald City’s underground scene in the mid-’80s, leading the neo-psychedelic group Pure Joy. Although Pure Joy — also consisting of bassist Lisa King and drummer Jim Hunnicutt — distanced themselves from the collision of punk and heavy metal that characterized many of the Pacific Northwest’s most popular acts, they managed to attract a cult following of their own as they toured with the Chameleons U.K. and received airplay on regional left-of-the-dial radio stations. However, the group — named after a song by the Teardrop Explodes — was still overshadowed by its louder, more aggressive peers. After releasing two albums, Pure Joy split up in the late ’80s. Willoughby then started Flop with guitarist Bill Campbell, bassist Paul Schurr, and drummer Nate Johnson. With Flop, Willoughby ventured into pure power pop, recalling the punk-fueled energy of the Jam and the Buzzcocks. Unfortunately, Willoughby was again the victim of bad timing. Pure Joy was too late to capitalize on the psychedelic revival of the early ’80s, and Flop’s bright, high-octane guitars didn’t quite fit in with the grim, angst-laden arena rock of Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, and Alice in Chains when they released their debut album, Flop and the Fall of the Mopsqueezer!, in 1992. Released on the independent label Frontier Records, the LP’s critical raves and the band’s Seattle residency got them signed to Epic Records, but the dark clouds of grunge rendered Flop invisible on modern-rock radar. When Epic put out the group’s second album, Whenever You’re Ready, they didn’t promote it enough and the band’s name became the record’s outcome. The group was quickly dropped. Flop recorded another full-length, World of Today, before disbanding. Willoughby, who also played drums for Seattle’s new wave icons the Fastbacks in the ’90s, reunited with King and Hunnicutt as Pure Joy in 1995. In 1998, they released Getz, the Worm.”
Rusty’s SoundCloud page informs you of the following Rusty facts.
Born. Doing stuff. Will die. Mammal. Air breather. Food eater. Space taker. Music maker.
Rusty Willoughby is an active American singer, musician and songwriter living on oxygen produced in Washington State. He is prone to anti-social behavior and consumes himself, small portions at a time. Hallucinogenic, scrapped metal. Post-Edisonian and rant driven. Biodegradable.
Rusty has a page about him on Wikipedia. It tells you more stuff. At left is Pure Joy.
In a 1999 review of Willoughby’s self-titled solo album, Don Yates of KEXP-FM described his “Beatlesque songcraft” as “bring[ing] to mind the starker side of Elliott Smith.