I Have Never Heard These Bands That Start With The Letter S

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Scruffy The Cat -- horrid poppy roots rock indie band from Massachusetts or thereabouts. My ex-wife used to like them.

-- Gorge, Friday, 14 March 2008 17:43 (7 minutes ago) Link

I can understand this evaluation through the lens of an ex-wife, but they were actually a quite entertaining mid/late 80's roots rock band with a taste of jangle/power-pop. Charlie Chesterman was very good with his joyful guitar and endearing lyrics. They did lose the plot near the end of their run with Moons of Jupiter, so anyone only familiar with that release isn't getting the whole story.

zaxxon25, Friday, 14 March 2008 18:00 (twelve years ago) link

Was there ever a band called The Retards and should they have been filed under "R" ?

Boyd Rice and Adam Parfrey had a band called The 'Tards, the joke being that the musicians were supposed to be retarded. More liberal baiting I guess.

Matt #2, Friday, 14 March 2008 19:02 (twelve years ago) link

Strunz & Farah - New-Agey world-music stuff, Latin/Carib rhythms with a pair of hotshit Gipsy Kings-style flamenco guitarists on top. Vocals in Spanish? or entirely instrumental? Can't recall at all. (Why do I own this?)

I have one of their albums too. I still play it occasionally. It's a little New Agey perhaps - but not too much for my taste. Some songs are instrumental and some have Spanish vocals. Mostly flamenco with Afro-Cuban rhythms as you mentioned, though some songs are more atmospheric with a Latin folk vibe and traditional instruments.

o. nate, Friday, 14 March 2008 19:28 (twelve years ago) link

School of Fish had a "modern rock" hit in 90/91 with "Three Strange Days." I remember liking it at the time but haven't heard it in forever.

I liked this one at the time too. It's got that crunchy, early-90s Butch-Vig guitar sound with croony vocals, like contemporaneous releases from Smashing Pumpkins and Overwhelming Colorfast (don't know if Vig was involved though).

o. nate, Friday, 14 March 2008 19:31 (twelve years ago) link

I have still not heard these bands filed under "S" in J&O's International Enclycloped of Hard Rock & Heavy Metal

Screen Idols
Sid Rumpo
Silver Train
Slack Alice
Speedway Boulevard
Split Beaver
Richard Steep

Gorge, Friday, 14 March 2008 20:01 (twelve years ago) link

707 were a Detroit band...did the theme song from the classic Barry Bostwick sci-fi thriller Megaforce in the mid-80's...also had a regional hit with "I Could Be Good For You"...they were neither hard rock nor metal...

henry s, Friday, 14 March 2008 20:22 (twelve years ago) link

Saracen - 80's hard rock / prog types, somewhere between UFO and Rush style-wise. Not exactly what the public wanted to hear at the time, hence they sank like a stone after one or two albums.

Shiva - see above.

Silverwing - early 80's attempt to ape Van Halen and Kiss on a budget of about £1.50. "Rock and Roll Are 4 Letter Words" was a good title I guess. I think they changed their name to Rox or Roxx and dropped the visual horror elements in favour of more mascara, then disappeared.

Snopek - is this Violent Femmes keyboardist Sigmund Snopek III? If so he had an ok-ish line in keyboardy prog a la early Utopia.

About half of those bands I remember from Kerrang's "Armed And Ready" new bands column, but can't say I ever really heard them.

Matt #2, Friday, 14 March 2008 20:23 (twelve years ago) link

Split Beaver is a really stupid name for a band.

Matt #2, Friday, 14 March 2008 20:24 (twelve years ago) link

It's right in there with the Special Eds and Hairy Clams of the world.

Gorge, Friday, 14 March 2008 20:28 (twelve years ago) link

Skunks (first list)were an Austin trio featuring Jesse(not Ned)Sublett and pre-True Believers Jon Dee Graham.

And the Silos do not either suck. Their first full-length record, Cubais tremendous.

ellaguru, Friday, 14 March 2008 20:57 (twelve years ago) link

If you've ever seen a late-night commercial for a CD comp of the greatest power ballads then you've heard Canadian one-hit wonder Sheriff and their song "When I'm With You" ... or more accurately you've heard "BAY-BAHHHH AYEEE AYEEEEAHH AYEEE AYEEEEAHHHH oh i get chills when i'm with you OOOOOWEEEEOOOHH OOOOOWEEEOOOOOHHHHAAAAHH"

zaxxon25, Friday, 14 March 2008 21:54 (twelve years ago) link

^^^pretty accurate

henry s, Friday, 14 March 2008 22:02 (twelve years ago) link

Streets - Not THE Streets, right?

Nope. Atlanta rock quartet, 1983, featuring Steve Walsh of Kansas. How he got to Atlanta I don't know.

xhuxk, Saturday, 15 March 2008 01:19 (twelve years ago) link

The Skunks from Texas did "Earthquake Shake" (which is on Bloodstains Across Texas, by far the best Bloodstains comp!) and then changed their sound to new wave/power pop - this is off the original list but never mind. I have their power pop album, it's not that good really unfortunately.

Colonel Poo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 01:22 (twelve years ago) link

7 Seconds I think were (slightly) underrated - hardcore fans hated them because they sold out and went pop in the late 80s (where pop means sounding a bit like Dag Nasty/Descendents) - their early stuff is good old school hardcore.

Colonel Poo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 01:25 (twelve years ago) link

7 Seconds = "Walk Together, Rock Together" -- hand-wringingly sincere hardcore punk, for those who needed a daily dose of an alternative Kumbaya. And a version of "99 Red Balloons" that makes you want to listen to the entire Nena album in its place.

Gorge, Saturday, 15 March 2008 03:22 (twelve years ago) link

Yes, "Walk Together, Rock Together" is all those things. Like I said, their early stuff as collected on the "Alt.Music.Hardcore" CD and the "Old School" CD or even the "The Crew" CD is all worth listening to.

Colonel Poo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 03:39 (twelve years ago) link


fantasimundo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 03:46 (twelve years ago) link

Now there was a great band. Sort of a cross between Splodgenessabounds and Showaddywaddy.

Kevin John Bozelka, Saturday, 15 March 2008 04:17 (twelve years ago) link

Yes, you're quite right. Somwhere between Shut Up You Cunt and Who Gives A Fuck.

Colonel Poo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 04:19 (twelve years ago) link

Spdfgh sold millions of records so obviously someone gives a fuck, sister.

Kevin John Bozelka, Saturday, 15 March 2008 04:21 (twelve years ago) link

I saw Max Splodge the other day!

Colonel Poo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 04:24 (twelve years ago) link

Godammit i hate rapidshare

Colonel Poo, Saturday, 15 March 2008 04:30 (twelve years ago) link

i loved 7 seconds. especially the first 7-inch with i hate sports on it. but i still hold on to my copy of the crew. they lost me with new wind, their crossover attempt. we in connecticut took pride in one member of the band wearing a violent children t-shirt on the cover of walk together rock together. (which i also liked despite the nena cover)

scott seward, Saturday, 15 March 2008 16:00 (twelve years ago) link

"Snopek - is this Violent Femmes keyboardist Sigmund Snopek III? If so he had an ok-ish line in keyboardy prog a la early Utopia."

his band The Bloomsbury People made one of my all-time fave early 70's psych records. you can get it on cd now:


and his later-70's power/pop/prog stuff is neat too.

scott seward, Saturday, 15 March 2008 16:03 (twelve years ago) link

Shox Lumania were very Klaus Nomi-influenced, led by a an artist named Lari Shox. Lenny Kaye's wife was in the band. If there was any sort of New Romantic movement in New York, they were it. I think part of their act was to pretend that they were from some obscure Eastern European country called Lumania.

I'm pretty sure Shox Lumania were actually purporting to be from some undersea country analogous to Atlantis. It was a sci fi concept for sure. I got a great deal of enjoyment out of that cassette. Always wanted to know more about them. Glad to find those video links!

Nate Carson, Saturday, 15 March 2008 18:43 (twelve years ago) link

The Secrets were comprised of former members of the band, The Brats

Though I could be wrong, I'm pretty sure The Secrets from Scott's list is The Secrets* (with the asterisk), whose self titled album from 1982 is #81 on John Borack's Top 200 Power Pop albums book. It was reissued in 2000. Here are some details:

* Missouri-based group
* Band's first single in late 70s was "It's Your Heart Tonight" on Titan Records
* Only full-length album was issued in Canada only
* Album was co-produced by former Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers drummer Stan Lynch

MC, Saturday, 15 March 2008 18:53 (twelve years ago) link

Sid Rumpo - is it just me or has anyone else just conjured up a mental image of Sid James as "The Rumpo Kid" in Carry On Cowboy???

Stewart Osborne, Monday, 17 March 2008 09:31 (twelve years ago) link

Savage Grace -- from Ann Arbor, they were in the second wave of 60s Dee-troit sound along w/Brownsville Station. did two -- or maybe three? -- albums on Warner Brothers. don't think they're on CD. sound pretty eclectic judging from the five songs I've streamed on my computer. prog and country influences though 1 track, "Come On Down" delivers the motor city mojo thanks to guitarist Al Jacquez.

Seatrain -- folk/jazz/flute hybrid with former members of Blues project.

Sadat X -- Brand Nubian were brazen anti-semites who ended up getting bounced from Elektra for hassling their (Jewish) publicist. Rolling Stone once quoted -- approvingly! or at least neutrally -- some pretty disgusting christ-killer lyric of theirs in a record review. just thought i'd share that.

m coleman, Monday, 17 March 2008 10:03 (twelve years ago) link

What I wrote about 707 (from George's list) on Rolling Metal last year:

707 Greatest Hits Live (GB Music) -- Liking this a lot, too. Know nothing about the band. New Rolling Stone Record Guide (blue 1983 edition) dismisses them as "second-rate Toto." Jasper and Oliver's International Enyclopedia of Heavy Metal raves about their "classic heavy-pomp sound with brutal drumming" and says their second album (apparently called 2nd Album!) went top 20 in the U.S., in 1981, and then they got Angel's bassist Felix Robinson. I thought Martin Popoff might be a fan, but realized I was confusing them with 54-40, whoever they are (Canadians, apparently) by mistake.
Anyway, the live album shows they did indeed make truly catchy hard-pop rock with plenty of smart pomp in the arrangements. Closest of maybe just laziest comparison I can think of would be Prism. But the first cut, "Live With the Girl," is a total ringer for "On Top Of the World" Cheap Trick. Some Babys and early Loverboy in there too. Most brutal (and funkiest) drums are in "Millionaire," one of the two heaviest cuts along with the Zep-like (or okay, I dunno, Fastway-like? Paris-like?) "Pressure Drop" (which is not a Toots and the Maytals cover.) Every other cut sinks its hooks in real quick. "Rockin is Easy" might be a protest against protest songs, but I might have heard its words wrong (defintely stuff in there about people wasting time seeking gainful employment and keeping up with the Joneses, and not knowing about the state of the nation and foreign relations, so let's just rock easy instead okay?)
-- xhuxk, Sunday, May 27, 2007 6:37 PM (9 months ago)

xhuxk, Monday, 17 March 2008 15:20 (twelve years ago) link

special ed - eighties hiphop. i only know his I'm The Magnificant, but in a version with a completely different beat than the one on youtube.

sleeze beez - glam-y dutch hardrock from the late eighties/early nineties

Joris Stereo, Monday, 17 March 2008 15:57 (twelve years ago) link

If you've ever seen a late-night commercial for a CD comp of the greatest power ballads then you've heard Canadian one-hit wonder Sheriff and their song "When I'm With You" ...

That song was a hit TWICE up here! First time in '83, later in '88. There was some weird kinda epidemic in 1988-89, with three different songs ("Red Red Wine" and "Send Me An Angel" being the others) all being rereleased & charting higher than their first go-round 3-5 years previous. Weird...

Myonga Vön Bontee, Tuesday, 18 March 2008 00:53 (twelve years ago) link

twelve years pass...

Suburban Studs - original 76 punks who did one good single: "Questions". It had a sax on it, which was awfully daring for the times. The follow-up was called "I Hate School" and was awful.

I wonder if this band got their name from the scene between Janice Rule and Burt Lancaster in "The Swimmer".

Is Lou Reed a Good Singer? (Tom D.), Wednesday, 20 May 2020 15:26 (one month ago) link

The version of the Sports' Don't Throw Stones is actually a composite of the same-titled Australian release with some tracks from the preceding album, their first---so it goes from more of a pub rock, rootsy, even rockabilly (and other 50s) sound, updated to and from the mid-70s, since they picked it up on the late 70s, from Graham Parker & The Rumor (with whom they toured), transitioning smoothly to the hookier newer tracks---so it's kind of like Graham Parker & The Attractions: Stephen Cummings' voice was deeper than Costello's, raspy around the edges, like Parker's, also not as nasal as EC, but sill kind of, so Parker plus early Richard Butler. A somewhat strict sound, not pompous, but no BS young schoolteacher or coach, with crisp combo incl. versatile guitarist, good LP! I've still got it somewhere.

dow, Wednesday, 20 May 2020 18:11 (one month ago) link

The Stiff-to-Arista version is what I'm talking about.

dow, Wednesday, 20 May 2020 18:13 (one month ago) link

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