It’s another installment of “special guest DJ” on Sunglasses After Dark. This go-round, we have Miguel Chen, bassist for Teenage Bottlerocket. The pop-punk road warriors’ seventh album, Tales From Wyoming, is due out March 31 on Rise Records, so after we interviewed Chen about the new record, we asked him the litany of questions we have for any artist willing to answer them. His answers are interesting. I suggest not looking at the playlist until afterward. The surprise is worth it.
Podcast #129, “Miguel Chen of Teenage Bottlerocket”
Every band last night had their vocals completely buried in the mix. Muddy, murky, and incomprehensible was pretty much the game for the entire night. When you’re dealing with the high, clear vocals of someone like openers Teenage Bottlerocket, it’s not so much an issue, but when you’ve got Al Barr’s rough, gruff singing for Dropkick Murphys
, it becomes a problem. Barr’s voice is pretty iffy, even under the best of circumstances, but under these conditions, it was a guttural, incomprehensible blur for the first 30 minutes of the band’s set.
This came out of nowhere (or, maybe, the shadows?), but Teenage Bottlerocket is releasing a 7-inch later this week on the long-defunct Clearview Records. Clearview, for those in the know, was the label which released all that Lillingtons stuff back in the ’90s, and whose last release was the TBR Live In ’06 single-sided LP.
From the TBR Facebook page:
“We’ve got a special new 7 inch out this week check it out:
NEW from CLEARVIEW RECORDS:
TEENAGE BOTTLEROCKET “Walked In Line” / “Ice Age” 7″ (CRVW-58)
This release is LIMITED to 1,000 copies, and will not be re-pressed!
All are on grey vinyl with gatefold covers.
Teenage Bottlerocket does two Joy Division songs – both are exclusive to this 7″!
The record will be available through several sites, including It’s Alive, No Idea and Dirtnap as well as the Clearview Records ebay store.
So, keep an eye out. I want this so very badly, and hope to hell it doesn’t hit the various distros while I’m at work.
(Fat Wreck Chords)
On the title track of this new single, “Mutilate Me,” Teenage Bottlerocket manages to change up their usual “1234!” song structure, and go for something a little more akin to what you might hear on MxPx’s Slowly Going the Way of the Buffalo.
Yes, I know that it’s fairly much semantics to discuss the various iterations of pop-punk chord progressions. Most of the last TBR record, They Came From the Shadows, had more of a mid-’80s skate punk vibe, however, so it’s interesting to see them moving to almost the opposite end of the pop spectrum with a song that features tempo changes and some nice riffage. The slightly sexual tone of the song is a lyrical shift, as well. “Hey, I don’t get off that easily / So don’t take it easy on me” are certainly a switch from “Bloodbath At Burger King.”