April 17th, 2009
I have to do it. I have to write about all of the post grunge bands left in the wake of the 90′s mega-grunge tri-axis of power namely (and you know who I’m going to say) Pearl Jam, Nirvana, and Soundgarden. There I said it, I said the three dirty words that have a tendency to be brushed under the carpet or left “unsaid” because of the enormity of influence they had on the Seattle music scene. So for a second get over your indie-rock and your hip-hop and whatever the fuck else your listening too and pay homage to a genre that basically opened the door for every tom-dick-and guitar playing harry to pack up and move to Seattle with the dream of “making it” in the music biz. And no I didn’t forget about Alice In Chains, I just chose not to exploit them… yet.
But lets not talk about those bands directly (we’ll leave that to regular spins at 107.7 The End), instead let’s talk about the local post-grunge music groups that jumped on the bandwagon literally, let the genre take the reigns and steer minions of musicians into the ultimate demise and release of post-grunge material. Like the fucking pied piper of grunge to post-grunge rats we have all heard these bands, and we don’t talk about them, or write about them, or give them any credit because well. 1. The genre is dead for now (even though flannel is back) 2. They usually suck. 3. Were a little embarrassed to talk about them because we don’t wanna break their spirit, and there are a ton of grunge nostalgia nerds in this town that will blog comment for fucking weeks about their knowledge of the genre. Well not anymore, I’m tipping the scales mo-fo’s in a running series I’m officially calling “A Post-Grunge Reflective.” My first band and album: Bent Richard – Copper Vocation.
Like most post-grunge bands this band was probably pre-myspace (OMG is there such a thing, I’ll refer to this from now on as B.M. yes that means Before Myspace) and has broken up. However before doing so they managed to record 15 songs at Synergy studios in Redmond and with it comes what I would consider the perfect example of post-grunge delirium. What I can gather these guys were probably in high school or later when they wrote and recorded this. The album was released 8 years ago on April 17th, 2001 on Orchards Records, not to be confused with the label The Orchard, big difference. And the only member I can currently find would be a Ken Belcher and I’m not for sure that he is the original singer. I just know this guy is fairly local and has a picture up at his website that says “Ken sings in his first band, Bent Richard.” Has to be the same band right?
Anyways, I can only describe this album as “so bad its good.” And I can’t take credit for finding it, that cred goes to my main man A-Bro who managed to find this in a record store one day and bought it on a whim. The rest is history, this album is probably the defining moment of zen for these guys at the time. The lyrics, composition, structure, and musicality are terrible and perfect all in one. I can’t really describe how perfect this album is to start this series with. Well, how bout this… just listen to the first song “Hola Beto Chaves” to get your first taste of what may be the greatest (and worst) listening experience of you lifetime.
Bent Richard – Copper Vocation – Song 2: Hola Beto Chaves
So check it, the songs starts with funky bass, then moves into heavy riffs, and then into the vocals which are lyrically lacking but you know what… this song makes me smile. Like I said it’s so bad it’s good, when your done listen to it again… then listen to the next precious gem which has me constantly walking around going “agaaaaiiiinnnn.”
Bent Richard – Copper Vocation – Song 2: Again
I’ll describe this one like this, I have nothing more to say again, conversation has run dry again, there are no more questions again, I have nothing more to say again. Yea… its purdy good, and OMG it gets better. Some of the lyrics are ok, but wow a song about nothing, and I though Seinfeld had a wrap on that.
Bent Richard – Copper Vocation – Song 2: Ego Trip (Fjs)
I don’t know who the fuck Fj is, but this guy is pissed. And the funny thing about this song isn’t just the lyrics, its that I can listen to it repeatedly and it makes me laugh. Its soooo bad, but its soooo good. If I sat down and tried to write a bad grunge song it wouldn’t be as pure as this is no way… keep going.
Bent Richard – Copper Vocation – Song 2: Going Down To The City
Just listen to it… and there’s nothing more to say… again.
Bent Richard – Copper Vocation – Song 2: Walls Become Us
So I don’t know how you can sing about PMS in a song and make it cool, but this isn’t a good example. My favorite is the part where he sings, “Ow Owe, shut that hole.”
Bent Richard – Copper Vocation – Song 2: I Wish I Was A Backstreet Boy
So heres the final song I’m leaving you with. I don’t even have words for how bad it is… its like watching an embarrassing moment and being embarrassed yourself. The solo is good but the whole thing reminds me of a bad Suicidal Tendencies. Oh well I hope you enjoyed and keep in mind this is 6 of 15 songs, all of which hold their own value and precious sentiment. I HIGHLY SUGGEST you pick up the whole album, its worth it I promise. The lyrics to this album have been a running joke with my friends and I for like a year, and I still have to put in on once and while to get a smile. Look don’t get me wrong, there are moments of clarity in the songs that really imply musicianship, but the overall writing and content are priceless. And there’s more to come trust me.
When the Croc closed down A-Bro and I got to gut the place of all the Cd’s submitted for gigs and there are some doosies in there for sure. And speaking of post-grunge doosies hey Kevin you got any of those new Chris Cornell cd’s left… Ima take a whack at that one.