Conan Neutron’s Top Records of 2018

Conan Neutron’s top records of 2018:
1. Tropical Fuck Storm – a Laughing Death in Meatspace (TFS Band)
2. Lung – All the Kings Horses 
3. sewingneedle – User Error
4. Screaming Females– All at Once 
5. Hot Snakes – Jericho Sirens
6. Body Futures– Maybe It’s Just the Weather 
7. Poster Children – Grand Bargain
8. Christian Fitness – Nuance the Musical 
9. Haunted Heads – Everything We Agreed About 
10. TONGUE PARTY – Looking for a Painful Death

Honorable Mentions: 
BLAHA– Survival Climb
The God Eaters – Fading Horizons
Gouge Away – Burnt Sugar
WORK – Strictly Cruis’n
Mister Dude – Party Tape
The Messthetics – s/t
Dale Crover – Fickle Finger of Fate
(the) Melvins – Pinkus Abortion Technician 
Lung – Bottom of the Barrel 
The Hand – When All Of The Shit Hits All Of The Fans (The Hand Vol. 3 & 4)

I listened to a LOT of records over the year, but these were the ones that that I listened to the most. And at some point, you have to just let the train leave the station.
I’ll put the links below

I’m sure I missed a few, that’s fine. The point is: there’s a ton of amazing music out there. Go listen to it! And I guess, like the show’s FB page if you support this kind of deep dive. 
Note: this is slightly different from the best of 2018 show, which was a team effort and will be a different post

1. Tropical Fuck Storm – A Laughing Death in Meat Space
Absolutely powerful stuff. Great songs with incredible left turns. Moody, claustrophobic and staggeringly self aware, like a sentient computer raised on Bill Hicks comedy specials, Howard Zinn, Black MIrror and Twin Peaks. I heard this blind, knowing nothing of any other or previous bands and loved it. Maybe you will too? It’s a hell of a ride. Possible record of the year.
RIYL: the pAperchAse, Dead Rider, Leonard Cohen, the Knife

2. Lung – All the King’s Horses
LUNG are back with a new album. You’ll never believe that a band with just Cello, vocals and drums can sound so full. Propulsive, Heavy, tuneful and thoughtful. Incredible lyrics, powerful arrangements and songs that stick with you for long after you stop listening. 

The only problem is they have a very unique sound, which isn’t always rewarded. I need you to trust me when I say that this is WELL worth your time and one of the best records of 2018. 

Bonus: a timely David Bowie cover.

3. sewingneedle – user error
Remarkably acrobatic musicianship paired with gorgeous harmonies. Musically, sewingneedle can hold their own with the fiercest noise rock band, yet there is melody and harmony. What madness is this? Great songs, great repeated listenability. 

RIYL: jawbox, slint, Polvo, Chavez, Shudder to Think, Shiner.
https://sewingneedle.bandcamp.com/album/user-error

4. Screaming FemalesAll At Once
Probably the best Screaming Females record yet… totally rips. A consistently great and hard working live band delivers their go-to record on record, what. 7? Not counting the live one. Incredible. These’s an adventure rock song on here and a song that legit sounds like it could be played as a prom. (I mean that as a compliment.)
As an aside, this is one of the records on my list that was probably most widely heard, yet wasn’t on that many lists. That’s really dumb. It’s great!
RIYL: Dinosaur Jr. Pixies, Silkworm
https://screamingfemales.bandcamp.com/album/all-at-once

5. Hot Snakes – Jericho Sirens
Hello! Do you live under a rock? Yes? Ok! This is the long awaited 4th record by the formerly dead, now living rock quartet HOT SNAKES. It’s fueled by the riffs of John Reis and the vocals of Rick Froberg. A certain magic happens with these two powerhouses together. The music is an inheritor of bands like the Wipers and Crime, while bringing some of the academic polyrhythms/punk-prog of Drive Like Jehu too. It’s exactly what the Doctor ordered.
https://hotsnakes.bandcamp.com/album/jericho-sirens

6. Body Futures – Maybe it’s Just the Weather
B-52s and Shudder To Think superhero team-up, Dismemberment Plan covering the New Pornographers. Whatever! Body Futures play music as unique as their name, it’s catchy it’s angular and it’s absolutely vital. Let’s get down to it boppers. 
https://bodyfutures.bandcamp.com/…/maybe-its-just-the…

7. Poster Children – Grand Bargain
First Poster Children album in years and it’s an absolute corker! Intelligent lyrics, catchy riffs, hooks for days and frantic energy are all on deck. Music for the modern revolution. RIYL: Buzzcocks, Sonic Youth, Talking Heads, Husker Du
https://store.posterchildren.com/album/grand-bargain

https://store.posterchildren.com/album/grand-bargain

8. christian fitness – nuance: the musical 
Nuance makes heavy use of strings and adult arrangements? (not pornography, you understand.). There aren’t any “candle in the wind” style ballads, or any regrettable ska numbers, but after 3 rock-solid, rockers certain to please fans of mclusky and fotl. This one is different, denser, & a little more challenging. Delivered with a smirk of sardonicism and a twinge of dystopian theatrical heights. There’s a lot here, but it keeps me coming back to listen regularly. Fantastic album.
https://christianfitness.bandcamp.com/…/nuance-the-musical

9. Haunted Heads – Everything We Agreed About
Unforgettable hooks, raucous riffs and superior songwriting. In a different time Haunted Heads would be the darlings of the indie rock world. RIYL: Built to Spill (at their least jammy!), Sebadoh (at their most stable) and the Thermals. 
https://hauntedheads.bandcamp.com/…/everything-we…

10. TONGUE PARTY – Looking for a Painful Death
Minneapolis purveyors of the heavy come through with their best effort to date! Bringing forth the boundless energy of KARP along with a mid-period AmRep sensibility, Tongue Party’s brand of relentless touring and hard work has resulted in their most badass and immediate record yet. Learning Curve Records
https://tongueparty.bandcamp.com/…/looking-for-a…

HONORABLE MENTIONS!

HONORABLE MENTION 1: BLAHA – Survival Climb
Mike Blaha of the Blind Shake has a hell ass rock quarter, this is their most raucous to date and it’s sure to please those that like their rock both wiry and engaged. Worthy of a listen to anybody interested in the cross roads of post-punk and garage rock. 
https://nocoastrecordings.bandcamp.com/…/blaha-survival…

HONORABLE MENTION 2: The God Eaters – Fading Horizons
the pride of Marquette Michigan come out with another ep of noise rocky solid rippers! Ferocious, Precocious and that’s my prognosis. RIYL: Minutemen, Vaz, The Big Boys
https://thegodeaters.bandcamp.com/album/fading-horizons

HONORABLE MENTION 3: Gouge Away – Burnt Sugar
A fascinating band! Sometimes hardcore, sometimes a bit more noiserock… strong songs and a powerful lady singer. A band to watch!

HONORABLE MENTION 4: WORK – Strictly Cruis’n
WORK are back, w/a tight new slab of some serious rock ‘n roll. (Well, not so serious if you consider the song titles… ) nevertheless, wry wordplay, clever songwriting & an intent to bring the damage w/ rock solid rhythms and hooky leads are on deck. Fans of the Minutemen, Spoon at their brattiest & loudest, Obits, & early ZZ Top can get stoked. This is ROCK music (ROCK, all caps, just like the band name WORK.) coming from a punk place. It’s well worth your time. Gotta gotta get to the show!
https://workmke.bandcamp.com/album/strictly-cruisn

HONORABLE MENTION #5: Mister Dude – Party Tape
WHAM! Mister Dude upside yo’ face. Deep feeling good about bad time jams, with some heavy Octave radness from two of the fellas from Police Teeth. The rock pedigree of SEMINARS, USS Horsewhip, etc. is as notable as the music itself. It’s a fun listen and a damn good ride. Party Tape indeed.
https://misterdude.bandcamp.com/album/party-tape

HONORABLE MENTION #6: The Messthetics – s/t
Killer instrumental goodness with one of the best rhythm sections of all time, Joe Lally and Brendan Canty of fugazi. Guitarist Anthony Pirog may not have the same level of punk rock notoriety, but he more than makes up for it with a level of acrobatic guitar exploration that rivals some of the greats. A great starting position for a worthy and notable new band. RIYL: Nels Cline Singers

HONORABLE MENTION #7: Dale Crover – The Fickle Finger of Fate
He’s not just half of the core of the Mighty Melvins, he’s not just the drum genius who makes things happen with me in Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends, he’s a talented songwriter, guitar player and singer and this is totally and completely worth your time! Cool songs, a little more classic rock than you might expect and worth a listen. Check it out, chocky. Awesome, vibe-y record with hidden hooks. 
https://melvinsofficial.bandcamp.com/…/the-fickle…

HONORABLE MENTION #8: (the) Melvins – Pinkus Abortion Technician. 
Mo’ Melvins! Long may they run, some fun covers and Don’t Forget to Breathe is one of my favorite Melvins songs in years.
https://melvinsofficial.bandcamp.com/…/pinkus-abortion…

HONORABLE MENTION #9: Lung – Bottom of the Barrel
What? Lung again? Yup.
Frenzied and furious Cello, Vocals and Drums badassery. Absolute earworms that comes at you from an aggressive punk/post-punk place but has an incredible sense of melody, hooks and purpose. This is legit plus stuff and I can’t think of a single band they really sound like. Just get it.
it’s technically 2017, but on the 2018 list for a technicality. Whatever! it’s still a great record. 

HONORABLE MENTION #10: The Hand – When All Of The Shit Hits All Of The Fans (The Hand Vol. 3 & 4)
Mysterious, elusive and irresistible, the HAND has done more than any band since the Residents in putting together a band image that forces you to judge them on the merits of the music. It’s quite the feat! However, I will say that this is zak sally, karl tebeest, and dale flattum. Zak played in Low and Enemymine, and Dale played in Steel Pole Bathtub, Milk Cult and Novex. Anyway, that’s a lot of front loading, this is raucous and hooky noiserock that can simultaneously evoke the Birthday Party, the Velvet Underground, the Melvins 

The HAND pull off a very special thing, by making all of their releases very limited edition and HYPER unique, hand made and limited edition. It’s easy to tell that multiple members of the band come from the world of comics, because this is a world to be invited into. 
https://the-hand.bandcamp.com/…/when-all-of-the-shit…

https://gougeawayfl.bandcamp.com/

Ep128: Bob Bert (Sonic Youth, Pussy Galore, Jon Spencer & the HITmakers)

Bob Bert

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(stream and download – Episode 128)

Well, hello there! Guess what? You bet it’s another episode of Protonic Reversal! This week, Conan and Josh talked with the legendary Bob Bert, drummer for Lydia Lunch Retrovirus, Jon Spencer and the HITmakers, Pussy Galore, Sonic Youth, and many more! We talked about:

-Touring more than ever before
-Playing shows with Jon Spencer again
-Getting the proper “junk” for the kit
-Starting the tour without knowing the songs
-Meeting Pussy Galore
-The guitar skills of Jon Spencer
-The night-and-day difference between the HITmakers and Retrovirus
-The dream gig with Lydia Lunch
-The encyclopaedic Weasel Walter
-Getting to know the Melvins
-Hearing protection
-Bad Moon Rising
-Setting up the first Sonic Youth European tour
-The historical wonder of Youtube
-Being there for the glory days of Max’s and CBGB
-Playing a better “Nature Scene” than Jim Sclavunos
-Bewitched opening for SY on the Goo tour
-The Action Swingers and the Chrome Cranks

Ep086: Mike Upchurch (The Hotbox)

Ep086: Mike Upchurch (The Hotbox)

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(stream and download – Episode 86)

Mike Upchurch of the Hotbox! Comes into the Radio NOPE world HQ to talk about heavy jams, and finding the underground NOT through punk rock. Politics are discussed, jokes are cracked and a good time is had by all.

Melvins – Choco Plumbing
Tweak Bird – Greens

Melvins – #2 Pencil
Helms Alee – Crystal Gale / New West

The Cell Phones – You Make Me Say No

Torche – Charge of the Brown Recluse

Shellac – End of Radio (Closing Theme)

Ep083: Joel Frost (Playing Rock Star)

episode83-joelfrost

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(stream and download – Episode 83)

Joel Frost does a TV Show called Playing Rock Star. This is a unique show where Joel plays with an established band on one of their big songs and gets a taste of what being in a band people give a damn about must be like. The first episode features The Electric Six, the band with their breakout hit “Gay Bar”. It’s a good conversation about the secret language of being in a band, being a fish out of water and what it is like playing in “the big time” even if only for a night. Check it out!

Nervous Curtains – Light Up the Sky (Van Halen)
Electric Six – Gay Bar

Le Butcherettes – Stab My Back
the Rutabega – Nosy Neighbors

Shellac – the End of Radio (closing Theme)

Ep079: Josh Newton (Shiner, Glazed Baby, Season to Risk) -pt2

episode79

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(stream and download – Episode 79)

Interview at 30 minutes.

auto updates, ipad as alarm clock, “waking up is hard to do”, Part 2 with Josh Newton (30 minute mark)

Shiner shows. “Shiner and Chill”, music vs. delivering pizza, on joining and quitting From Autumn to Ashes, “I love you guys, but i’m done”, Conan’s Dwarves story. Working for SNL, Falling in with Fall Out Boy, playing “uptown funk” with little notice, Houston rodeo, The Damned Things, blowing it with Dave Grohl, the Anthrax dudes, JUNE GLOOM, Aluminati and pedals, Wiz Khalifi and Keith Levene. deleting facebook, politics, etc. illusion of action. ALL THIS AND MORE, NOW IT CAN BE TOLD!

Shiner – Play Dead
Generalissimo – Pipe City
Sie Lieben Maschinen – The Man Laughs
Megamaul – Tunnel Rat
Shiner – Andalusia

Sie Lieben Maschinen – Premier cru
Roomrunner – Bait Car

Sie Lieben Maschinen – Should have looked in the mirror.
Shiner – Surgery

Ep069: James Burns (SEMINARS / Police Teeth) & Casey Nolan

episode69

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(stream and download – Episode 69)

Tour tapes, Small towns and small minds, gentrification, Katy Lester and STUD LEATHER, Latest Flame and “street gang”, Digital Snakes and usury Human Kid ep, cats and cat situations, Casey learning to play bass with her pinky and playing with James, baseball, more on tour tapes, writing “Rats”, “It’s Fine”, Tourin’ in a Suburban, Casey being the band mom and the youngest member, local Rabbis and Dragon Ball Z… 9,000 minutes worth.

SEMINARS – 100 Problems
Hurry Up Shotgun – Speedbath Megawaste

SEMINARS – Stud Leather
Police Teeth – Digital Snakes

SEMINARS – Easy ‘Cause It Is
SEMINARS – Diet Coke and Aspirin

Sin BAD – Anxiety
SEMINARS – The Rats Are Coming, The Werewolves Are Here

SEMINARS – West Coast
SEMINARS – Comm House

Porch – Heartattack
These Estates – Soiled Hands (live)
the rutabega – Entrapment

Shellac – Be Prepared
Melvins – Beer Hippy
Whores – Cougars, Not Kittens

Ep065: Motherfucker (Erika, Erica, Mandy)

Motherfucker from Athens, GA

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(stream and download – Episode 65)

65 episodes, Old enough to retire, Protonic “Game of Thrones it’s not”, Cinderella’s beasts and the task rabbits, hitting people in the face with magnets, mom love, Carl Sagan’s Ghost, the shocking story behind methwitches, on Audacious names and reactions and the nature of vulgarity and grown up words, MIAMI CONNECTION as the inspiration for Tae Kwon Do the ep, Scott Weilland’s wine lyrics. The yarrrl as the musical equivalent of the vocal fry and Yarrl’s revenge, Mandy’s love of Springsteen, Fyddylestyxxx

Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends – Casually Intense (Opening theme)
Motherfucker – Motherfucker – Confetti (In Your Fucking Face)
Creepoid – Tell The Man
Motherfucker – Zang!

Motherfucker – Methwitches
Shellac – the End of Radio (closing theme)

Ep064: David Yow (Jesus Lizard, Scratch Acid, Actor)

David Yow - episode64

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(stream and download – Episode 64)

Getting the call to sing for FLIPPER, getfaced, acting!, Jesus Lizard reunions and injuries, the definitive mouth breather story and so much more. 50 Shades of Wesham, Brenna LITERALLY painting herself into a corner, “What like Hoobastank?”

interview starts at 49 minute mark.

Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends – Casually Intense (Opening theme)

the Jesus Lizard – Then Comes Dudley

Scratch Acid – Owner’s Lament
Qui – Willie the Pimp
Flipper – The Way of the World

The Jesus Lizard – Gladiator
Scratch Acid – Cannibal
The Jesus Lizard – Fly on the Wall

the Melvins – Blockbuster (w/David Yow)
Flipper – Life

INTERVIEW with David Yow

Shellac – the End of the Radio ( Closing theme)

Ep058: Travis Keller (Buddyhead)

episode58 - Travis Keller (Buddyhead)

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First evening broadcast ozzy vs. dio sabbath, Buddyhead podcasts, Blag Dahlia and the Dwaves, big festivals, GLAMPING, the nature of a free wheeling conversation, talking with Andrew W.K., hating David Lynch and ska, but not spending lots of time hating things, Travis as the Log Lady, ORIGIN STORY OF SHAT & BUDDYHEAD! brief prfbbq2015 rounduplardo, powder room
interview at 30:00

Episode 58

Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends – Casually Intense (opening theme)
Drive Like Jehu- Luau
Lardo – Run Away

christian fitness – the harder it hits
Le Butcherettes – They Fuck You Over

Shat – Dollar Store
Shat – Thank God for Pussy
Jaq Gallier – Revolutions
Shellac – The End of Radio (Closing Theme)

Ep054: Back in Action.

episode54

Protonic Reversal

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Music and talk. Melvins premiere, baseball talk by people who don’t follow baseball, Marc Maron story, Conan talks about recording the new Secret Friends record. General mirth and merriment, etc.
Episode 54

8:00am: Casually Intense (Opening Theme) by Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends from the Enemy of Everyone
8:10am: Captain Comedown by Melvins from Chaos As Usual

8:11am: Heartattack by Porch from Walking Boss

8:32am: Tequila and Marigolds by B. Hamilton from Fight Everything

8:36am: Tharsis by Minot from An Era of Institutional Failure

8:42am: Lost in the Light by Heavenly States from An Era of Institutional Failure

9:08am: Keep On Knocking by Death from For The Whole World to See

9:10am: Backyard Lightning by The Columbines from Feral Villa

9:15am: Faster Than Light by Turbo Lightning from Faster Than Light
9:52am: The End of Radio (closing theme) by Shellac from Excellent Italian Greyhound

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