The Meanest Boys from Long Beach

I was reading Texture Magazine this morning surrounded by a pile of used Kleenexes and empty teacups. For the last six days, I’ve had an unbearably stupid sinus infection which has rendered me useless for human interaction, so I’ve been sequestered in my apartment, eating pistachios, pickles, & pomegranates. I like eating in alliterations and in colour patterns when I’m sick, because it’s not like my taste buds can function on a sophisticated level when they have a layer of mucous smeared on them. So why not have fun with it?

There’s been a lot of local buzz around Chandra lately and I haven’t bought into the hype yet (Toronto music scene, plz don’t strike me dead). Throughout my life, I have always been unable to navigate the cool table; I don’t really understand popular fringe subcultures until it is already embarrassingly late. I think this is because I was weaned on Disney for too long.

Anyways, Texture Magazine did a piece on Chandra before her much-celebrated show at Double Double Land last week with Bile Sister, Sexy Merlin and New Chance, so I thought it would be a good idea to read it. I didn’t go to the show last week because I was too busy cultivating millions of cold viruses to spread around my social network.

The Chandra piece was pretty good, but I still feel lukewarm about her music, and it’s not because I’m a post-punk hater (give me post-punk garage rock and I’m happy as a clam). I think it’s because, like so many other influential artists – e.g. Kate Bush, you have to arrive at her music at a very specific time within your own life in order to appreciate her fluency.

I was scrolling down Texture Magazine when I stopped on a video by Casina777 embedded in a piece detailing local artist/cool human Alicia Nauta‘s musical picks. Aping The Rolling Stones’s Beast Of Burden, it’s basically everything I look for in a YouTube video.

From here, I spiralled down the Internet hole of watching Casina777 videos, including one that was cryptically-entitled “Maze.”

If you’re reading this at work, you probably shouldn’t play this video unless you want your bosses to think you have a warped CGI fetish. The description box said the music was by William Alexander from Long Beach, and Google magic pointed me towards his musical project The Meanest Boys. Maze was released on Girls Basketball via Juniper Tree Songs eight months ago. I’m thinking of buying a 5-cassette sampler from Juniper Tree Songs just to save money on shipping to Canada, so I’ll let you guys know once it arrives (I’ll take a picture and do a review of what I get).

Anyways, here’s Maze – it’s totally amazing. Psychedelic without being slow-paced. Kind of frenetic but also cohesive at the same time.

Really glad I stumbled upon The Meanest Boys today, because I love lo-fi pop with strange samples. I listened to Strangest Things, self-released October 11th 2011, all the way through without stopping. I’m now working my way through his 2010 album, Cheer Up Friend. Finding out that he loves Avey Tare makes a ton of sense.

Here are my favourite tracks.

Facebook | Bandcamp (The Meanest Boys) | Bandcamp (William Alexander) | Soundcloud

I’m going to take a shower and pick up a record I ordered in from Rotate This now.