Background Noise, Episode 78: Clayton Brothers by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 78, THE FOCUS IS ON CLAYTON BROTHERS.

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 78, THE FOCUS IS ON CLAYTON BROTHERS.

Rob and Christian Clayton have collaborated on their artwork for years. Rarely working on the same canvas at the same time, the Pasadena, CA brotherly duo have perfected their psychedelic abstract art by taking turns, adding layer upon layer to what's in front of them.

It's not easy to say who does what, whether one painting is more Rob than Christian, or vice versa, but it is said that they both have very different styles. They do share inspiration though, often taking queues from local businesses and local regulars. Watch this great video of the two of them in a thrift store talking about some of these inspirational objects, sayings, etc.

You can learn more about the Clayton Brothers over at claytonbrothers.com.

What was your first concert?
CC: The Clash, Red Rocks Colorado
RC: My first concert was the Kamikazi Klones at the Rainbow music hall in Denver Co.

Last concert/show?
CC: Slim Cessna’s Auto Club
RC: The last show I went to was with Christian we saw a band from Denver Co. called
Slim Cessna’s Auto Club, two of the band members Daniel Grandbois and Todd Moore are childhood friends of ours. Slim Cessna’s Auto Club is a truly amazing group of talented musicians.

First album you bought?
CC: The Clash "Give em’ Enough Rope”
RC: Elvis Costello “ My Aim is True” 1977

Last album you bought?
RC: Morgan O’Kane “Pendulum”
CC: Bob Dylan "The Times They Are a-Changin"

Was there one record that made a significant impression on you?
CC: Tom Waits “Rain Dogs”
RC: I would have to say The Pogues “Rum, Sodomy And The Lash” Every song on this album is great!

Who is your musical hero?
CC: Nina Simone
RC: That would be Joe Strummer

How important is music to your creative process?
CC: When in full-working mode; I would say very important… I love listening to a variety of music when Im in the studio.
RC: I think a lot of the ideas that find their way into our paintings come from the eclectic music we play at the studio. We also make ambient noise recordings from around our neighborhood that we use in our installations.

1. Bob Log III - Six Stringer Kicker
2. The Damned - Dozen Girls
3. Daniel Johnston - Funeral Home
4. Doo Rag - John Henry
5. The Pogues - If I Should Fall From Grace With God
6. The Pogues - Navigator
7. Rocket From the Crypt - Ditch Digger
8. Slim Cessna’s Auto Club - Pine Box
9. The Clash - This Is England
10. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Into My Arms

Check out Michael's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.

New Bleubird Music: "No Limit Tank" by Matt Valerio

Brand new BANGER from Bleubird's recently-released Lauderdale album, out now on Fake Four. Buy it here.

Background Noise, Episode 77: Michael Hsiung by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 77, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST MICHAEL HSIUNG.

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 77, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST MICHAEL HSIUNG.

Bio direct from the artist:

Born in Chinatown, Los Angeles, Michael C. Hsiung is a self taught artist known for his black-and-white pen and ink drawings. His work features a range of strangely rotund characters from fantastical creatures, such as centaurs and mermen to somewhat contemporary and/or old fashion bearded males often celebrating, imbibing, and rebel-rousing.  He has exhibited his works in various galleries and shows, such as the East of Eden (2008), Helsinki Biennial (2008), Murray State University (2009), Slingluff Gallery, PA (Solo show: 2010), THIS gallery (2012), LA HEAT at CAM (2014) and most recently had an exhibition “Who Cares Wins” at the Vincent Price Art Museum (2014).  He also has done freelance and commercial work for various companies including, Dr. Martens, Enjoi Skateboards, Momentum Wheels, Matix, VICE, Ambig, James Iha, VANS and most recently awarded gold in New Zealand’s Best Graphic Design for three of his designs with Y&R for Blunt Umbrellas (2014).  Michael currently lives with his wife, Rachel, in LA where he continues to make art, zines, and show works.

First album you bought?
A Beatles tape in Taiwan but all sung by Taiwanese musicians so not really the Beatles hahah.

Last album you bought?
Sleep, The Clarity Ep

First concert?
Michael Jackson, Dodger Stadium, 1984.  I remember everyone wearing the glitter glove, and I was thinking weird no one got the pair.

Last concert?
Black Sabbath Reunion tour, Greek theater, 2015?

Was there one album that made a significant impression on you?
Probably Metallica’s Master of Puppets

Who is your musical hero?
Geezer, Cliff Burton, Danzig!

How important is music to your creative process?
Music is very much a subliminal aspect of my creative process. I often listen to the same songs and playlists over and over to sort of zone myself out.  In order to sort of get myself going artistically I will play music from a playlist I titled Wake and Bake, much of that I’ve included in my playlist for Background noise. ENJOY!

1. Forever My Queen, Pentagram
2. Dragonaut, Sleep
3. Gypsy, Mercyful Fate
4. Death Is The Answer, Early Man
5.  Wizard King, Inside
6. Run To Your Mama, Goat
7. I Am The Skull, Danava
8. The Four Horseman, Metallica
9. Don’t Take Me Alive, Steely Dan
10. Lord Of This World, Black Sabbath
11. Only Death Decides, Exodus
12. Obolus, Thrones
13. In The Air Tonight, Godheadsilo
14. Moans, Tweak Bird
15. Skweetis, Melvins

Check out Michael's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Michael's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 75: Plastic Jesus by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 76, THE FOCUS IS ON LOS ANGELES STREET ARTIST PLASTIC JESUS

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 76, THE FOCUS IS ON LOS ANGELES STREET ARTIST PLASTIC JESUS

Some have called Plastic Jesus the "Banksy of LA." I suppose it's easy to do that theses days.  Anyone doing stencil-based street art with a message, or intricate street installations meant to provoke thought could be called the "Bansky of (whatever)."

Plastic Jesus has gone a bit viral as of late, due to his commentary on celebrity culture in this day and age. Putting up "Kardashian Parking Only" signs all over Los Angeles got him a bit of attention, as well as his "Stop Making Stupid People Famous" campaign, which emblazons everything from walls to stickers and t-shirts. The phrase resonates so much with people, due to it's simple, but to-the-point statement that says exactly what most of us non-reality tv-watching folks have been thinking the whole time.

He made a bit of a stir in Hollywood a couple of years back due to his life-size depiction of an Oscar statue shooting heroin outside the Oscars. The sculpture featured a placard at the bottom reading "Hollywood's Best Kept Secret," a not-so-subtle statement following the brilliant Philip Seymour Hoffman's tragic drug overdose that happened a mere few weeks prior to the award ceremony.

Not all of his work is quite as heavy, but all of it does force you to stop and think for a few moments, whether it's about celebrity culture or consumerism, which is something more people should be doing instead of sitting idly by, doing nothing.

What was your first concert?
The Yellow Magic Orchestra, Hammersmith Odeon. London 1980

Last concert/show?
Above and Beyond - Acoustic at the Greek LA

First album you bought?
David Bowie - Scary Monsters

Last album you bought?
Jean Michel Jarre - Equinox released 1978 - Changed electronic music for ever.

Was there one album that made a significant impression on you?
Placebo - Without You I’m Nothing.

Who is your musical hero?
David Bowie

How important is music to your creative process?
Hugely. Music has been a huge part of everything I do. I taught myself to play keyboards age 12 or 13 and built a number of synths. I still write and record my own material. I think everyone needs a creative outlet, without we wither and die. I usually have Absolute radio (a London station) on in the studio, playing anything from Radiohead to The Clash

(VIA RYOT)

Radiohead - Creep
New Order - True Faith
The Clash - I Fought the Law
Happy Mondays - Loose Fit
Edith Piaf - Non je ne Regrette Rien
Placebo - The Crawl
Counting Crows - Long December
Underworld - Born Slippy
John Lennon - Mind Games
Lou Reed - Walk on the Wild Side
The Buzzcocks - Ever Fallen In Love With Someone
Rui De Silva - Touch Me
Athlete - Wires
David Bowie - Ziggy Stardust
Catatonia - Road Rage

Check out Plastic Jesus's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Plastic Jesus's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 75: Adam Wallacavage by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 75, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST ADAM WALLACAVAGE

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 75, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST ADAM WALLACAVAGE

Adam Wallacavage's South Philly residence is most people's dream home. Outfitted with the kitschiest of the kitschy, he's surrounded himself with exactly what he likes, things that stimulate and inspire him. It's here in this home that he started creating his now well-known chandeliers, which range from various octopi to dragons and snakes. Hand-sculpting them with epoxy clay, he then paints them and covers them with resin to presents a glass or ceramic look.

They're all both terrifying and beautiful, frequently snagged up by art and kitsch collectors alike for a slightly hefty price. Adam is a photographer as well (he's has shot in the past for magazines like Thrasher). The playlist he put together for this series features a great mix of modern skate garage/trash (Thee Oh Sees, King Khan, Cramps) and some classic goth-y tracks (Bauhaus, Sisters of Mercy, Tones on Tail). I love it.


First album you bought?
DEVO: Are We Not Men

Last album you bought?
Thee Oh Sees: Drop

First concert?
It was in 1985 at the Atlantic City Elks Club for The Electric Love Muffin, Die Kruzen and Articles of Faith opening for The Faction but The Faction didn't show up.

Last concert?
Electric Wizard at Union Transfer in Philly.

Was there one album that made a significant impression on you?
It was a tape my friend made me with Bauhaus on one side and Siouxsie and the Banshees on the other. I listened to it constantly when I was 14 or 15. It totally influenced a lot in my life.  

Who is your musical hero?
Lux Interior

How important is music to your creative process?
I got my whole house/studio hooked up with SONOS speaker system and it's pretty much on all day and night. My studio is in my house and sometimes I won't leave at all during the day so I tend to go to a lot of shows whenever I can at night to be somewhat social. Philly is a great city to see music. There's a ton of venues and great bands come through here. I try to stay current so that there's more shows I want to see and with the online streaming, it's so easy to find new music without leaving the house but I make up for getting free music online by buying lots of records at the shows.

Watch Adam give a tour of his fascinating house above, and see a great article about his home here.


DEVO - Gut Feeling
Crocodiles - All my Hate and Hexes Are For You
Monster Magnet - All Friends and Kingdom Come
Slowdive - When the Sun Hits
Dead Skeletons - When the Sun Comes Up For the Last Time
Kate Bush - Moving
Roxy Music - In Every Dreamhome A Heartache
Blonde Redhead - Spring and By Summer Fall
Siouxsie and the Banshees - The Rapture
Sisters Of Mercy - Marian
Tones on Tail - Rain
Bauhaus - Exquisite Corpse
The Dark Horses - Radio
The Asteroid #4 - Windmills of the Autumn Sky
Thee Oh Sees - Corprophagist (A Bath Perhaps)
The Altered Hours - Sweet Jelly Roll
Queens of the Stone Age - Hanging Tree
The Gun Club - Breaking Hands
The Cramps - Voodoo Idol
King Khan and the BBQ Show - I wanna Be a Girl
Creepoid - Yellow Wallpaper
The Tough Shits - Try Not to Laugh
Melody's Echo Chamber - I Follow You
Pearls Before Swine - Surrealist Waltz


Check out Adam's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Adam's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 74: Danny Minnick by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 74, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST DANNY MINNICK

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 74, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST DANNY MINNICK

Danny Minnick does it all. Not only is he a well-respected artist in the Los Angeles art scene, he is also a professional skateboarder and actor who has appeared in films by everyone from Gus Van Sant to Marcus Raboy and Larry Clark. You can catch him in 2016's The Brits Are Coming, starring Crispin Glover, Uma Thurman, Sofia Vergara, Parker Posey, Tim Roth and others.

His art sometimes resembles the manic, stream-of-consciousness paintings of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Whatever is going on in Danny's mind at that moment ends up splattered on the canvas. Sometimes it's simple, sometimes it's chaotic. He's a man who must create. His work resides in the private collections of Mena Suvari, Nick Cassavetes and Fred Durst, among others.

 

First album you bought?
Winifred Atwell . From a thrift store

Last album you bought?
Velvet Underground - Fully Loaded

First concert?
That I can remember .. NIRVANA AT THE OK HOTEL

Last concert?
Joseph Arthur

Was there one album that made a significant impression on you?
Led Zeppelin Houses of the Holy

Who is your musical hero?
Jimi Hendrix

How important is music to your creative process?
Very important .. It feeds Me.. 

Brian Eno - Baby's on Fire
WInifred Atwell - Poor People of Paris
Jimi Hendrix - Machine Gun
The Velvet Underground - Oh Sweet Nuthin
London Grammar - If You Wait
Bob Dylan - It's All Over Now Baby Blue
Miles Davis - Whispering
The Beatles - Dig a Pony
Rolling Stones - Emotional Rescue
The Animals - Hey Gyp
The Cry - Twist of Faith
Nirvana - Oh, Me
Lana Del Ray - Florida Kilos
Coldplay - Amsterdam
Courtney Barnett - Anonymous Club

Check out Danny's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Danny's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 73: Phobik by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 73, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST PHOBIK

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 73, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST PHOBIK

Phobik is a self-taught artist from Hollywood, CA. Starting with gory, angst-filled drawings, he quickly progressed into bright colored paintings, drawing inspiration from comic book superheroes to He-Man cartoons.

He's collaborated on canvas and concrete with everyone from Septerhed to MadMan, and recently wrapped a dual show at LA's Stone Malone gallery with Ratchet Man.

First album you bought?
Limp Bizkit - Significant Other


Last album you bought?
Ghostface Killah - 36 Seasons


First concert?
System of a Down / Mars Volta at the Long Beach Arena


Last concert?
Post Malone / Og Maco-Hamoneverything

Was there one album that made a significant impression on you?
Deftones- Deftones


Who is your musical hero?
Jimi Hendrix

How important is music to your creative process?
Imagination needs a soundtrack. As an Artist you gotta try to fit this huge movie worthy story into one scene. sometimes the chords of a background song make the Art Piece come together in a different, satisfying way.

       1. Deftones - My Own Summer (Shove It)
       2. Led Zeppelin - Since I've Been Loving You
       3. Jimi Hendrix - Machine Gun
       4. Ghostface Killah - Love Don't Live Here No More
       5. Queens of the Stone Age - Make it wit chu
       6. Queens of the Stone Age - You Think I Ain't Worth A Dollar, But I Feel Like A Millionaire
       7. Dimmu Borgir - Puritania
       8. GZA - Liquid Swords
       9. Black Sabbath - N.I.B
      10. Janis Joplin - Summertime

Check out Phobik's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Phobik's Instagram here.

Background Noise, Episode 72: Adam Void by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 72, THE FOCUS IS ON ADAM VOID

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 72, THE FOCUS IS ON ADAM VOID

Adam Void is an Outsider. He lives on the edge of a mountain in the green paradise of Appalachian North Carolina with his wife, Chelsea Ragan and his daughter. He has been making art in the public sphere since 1998. He has been politically active from childhood, spending a moment everyday to take a jab at the dominant, oppressive, racist, misogynist, elitist, capitalist, police state of contemporary culture. He has been blessed to visit 40 of these United States (mostly by freight train or rideshare) and has determined that the people of this country vary widely by region, and are only united through this thing called Popular Culture. He is very interested in understanding how art/music/literature that is counter to this culture can use the distribution methods of popular culture to subvert the system. He has also made noisy music since 1997, the most recent of which can be found here.

What was your first concert? 
REM (Green Tour) - April 25, 1989 - Carolina Coliseum, Columbia, SC
I was very young, but the fact that REM was from the South was not lost on me. I quickly got into the B52's, Flat Duo Jets, and Pylon. My parents had me when they were teenagers, so they were kinda hip and cool. I saw the B52's with Tears for Fears pretty early on too. We were into the early 90's environmental movement of recycling, anti-Styrofoam, and anti-CFC's. I grew up political-minded with an emphasis on Southern American counterculture.

Last concert/show? 
Jefferson Mayday Mayday, Secret Boyfriend, Yohimbe, Sagan Youth, and Adam Void - December 2014 - Meadows of Dan, Carrboro, NC
My lifelong friend, Jefferson Mayday Mayday asked me to play this show with him during his recent trip to the US from Sydney Australia. Sadly, I haven't been able to afford to see many of the great shows that have come to Asheville recently. Neutral Milk Hotel, Kraftwerk, Panda Bear, and Daniel Johnston have all asked for over $30 a ticket.  Add to that, the fact that I am a father of an eight month old baby. No time.

First album you bought?
New Kids on the Block, Hanging Tough - 1988
What can I say, I bought into the popular current of those bad boys, the New Kids. I saw them in concert too, slightly after the REM show. It was pretty impressive to see Donnie Wahlberg hanging by one hand off of an elevated cage while singing a pop song. There was lots of girls there too.

Last album you bought?
Laurie Anderson - Mister Heartbreak or Bell Biv Devoe - Poison single
I mostly listen to cassette tapes that I find at the pay-by-the-pound thrift store in Asheville, NC. This way, what I hear is a coincidental luck-of-the-draw based on what people are throwing away at any time. I mostly put them in my pocket as I walk around the store, but sometimes I pay fifty cents a piece for them.

Was there one record that made a significant impression on you?
Nirvana - Incesticide
I was a devoted Nirvana fan with the whirlwind of Nevermind and the cultural upheaval that followed, but Incesticide managed to strike a much different chord in my mind. It was the most under-produced recording I had heard to date, blending pop with noise in an infectious, chaotic mess. From there, I better understood Devo, the Vaselines, the Pixies, Daniel Johnston, and Sonic Youth. Going down the rabbit hole. And the artwork.... I still wear my original Incesticide shirt, and sadly just got a bunch of black paint on it from a recent spot with Fishglue NGC. :(

Who is your musical hero?
Black Flag (as a whole)
Through all of the line-up changes, they managed to create the independent distribution, touring, and promotion network that became the vehicle for the late 80's to early 90's US underground. They created what's understood as Hardcore, and then abandoned the cliche to experiment with spoken-word, instrumental jam, and metal edged sounds. All this plus the amazing artwork of Raymond Pettibon and publicizing through graffiti and wheatpaste.

May I also say, that I would not be the same artist today, if it were not for the musical impact of a single individual, Joe Ahearn. I met Joe in Brooklyn during the Summer of 2006. He had recently taken over curatorial duties at the original Silent Barn, and had just launched (in partnership with Todd P) a monthly publication of underground music shows called Showpaper. I was, and still am, amazed by the creative energy and DIY ethos embodied in Joe. He introduced me to all the sounds of my four years in New York; Secret Project Robot, Dead Herring, Death by Audio, the Woodser, Goodbye Blue Monday, and later, Shea Stadium. This man is a creative and organizational genius.

How important is music to your creative process?
Music is essential to my creative process.
I got into graffiti through promoting for my high school punk band, Plain Crash. We would follow Black Flag's model by spray painting controversial slogans and wheatpasting fliers on telephone poles of rural South Carolina side streets. Nowadays in my studio, I jam crackly thrift store mixtapes, and on the way to the spot, Ive been rocking this amazing rarities album from the Cure titled Concert and Curiosity.

Black Flag - Spray Paint the Walls (1981)
Circle Jerks - Deny Everything (1980)
The Choir Quit - MBUR (2010)
Sonic Youth - Mildred Pierce (1990)
Nirvana - Tourette's (Live 1992 - Reading Festival, UK)
Japanther - Radical Businessman (2009)
Neutral Milk Hotel - Holland, 1945 (1998)
The Germs - Forming (1981)
The B52's - 52 Girls (Live 1980 - Capitol Theatre, GA)
Skull and Dagger - GPS Atlantis (2014)
Rage Against The Machine - Freedom (Live 1996 - Munich, DK)
In/Humanity - Against All Youth (1997)

Check out Adam Void's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Adam's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 71: Shark Toof by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 71, the focus is on artist shark toof

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 71, the focus is on artist shark toof

Shark Toof has been a fixture in the Los Angeles street art scene for years now. His iconic shark wheat pastes, which featured "TOOF" strategically placed in the negative space left from rows of shark teeth, were commonplace throughout the streets of many cities, from Los Angeles to New Hampshire. And his gallery art, much more detailed and thought out, continues to wow art collectors worldwide

He has worked closely with PangeaSeed, a Hawaii-based non-profit organization that helps educate and raise awareness about the importance of shark conservation and preserving ocean habitats. PangeaSeed even helped coordinate a shark dive for him so he could better connect with the sharks and the ocean life.

In addition to his website, his work can be seen at the Chinese American Museum in Los Angeles, where his work is part of their permanent collection. He also has two 100 foot murals located in Miami and Los Angeles. The latter of which recently had a preservation fundraiser to keep it visible.

What was your first concert?
New Order or Jesus And Mary Chain, but The LA Dream Team played a lunch time
show at my middle school.  Does that count?

Last concert/show?
The Make Up

First album, tape or cd you bought?
New Order - Substance

Last album you bought?
It's been so long I can't remember.
Either The Wedding Present or Casiotone For The Painfully Alone

Was there any album that made a significant impression on you?
Jane's Addiction -  Nothing's Shocking

Who is your musical hero?
Robert Smith

How important do you think music is to your creative process?
Music is important to my living process.

1975 JAWS THEME SONG
Summertime Rolls - JANE’S ADDICTION
Dance Yrself Clean - LCD SOUNDSYSTEM
Corduroy - THE WEDDING PRESENT
Vapour Trail - RIDE
We Can't Be Contained - THE MAKE UP
Sunshine Smile - ADORABLE
Star Sail - THE VERVE
So What - MINISTRY
I Luv The Valley Oh - XIU XIU
The Fire In Which You Burn Slow - INDELIBLE MCS
Summer Babe - PAVEMENT
2 Kindsa Love - JON SPENCER BLUES EXPLOSION
Birthday (Christmas Eve Christmas Day Remix) ( with Jesus and Mary Chain) - SUGAR CUBES
1969 - THE STOOGES
Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space - SPIRITUALIZED
Mersey Paradise - STONE ROSES
Just Like Honey - JESUS AND MARY CHAIN
Looking At You - MC5
If You're Feeling Sinister - BELLE AND SEBASTIAN
Little Yellow Spider -DEVENDRA BANHART
Thirteen (Demo Version) - FORWARD RUSSIA
Between Us and Them - MOVING UNITS
Do They Owe Us A Living - CRASS
In My Eyes - MINOR THREAT
Plainsong - THE CURE
Ceremony - NEW ORDER
Disorder - JOY DIVISION
Sheep - GONJASUFI
El Camino - ZACKEY FORCE FUNK

Check out Shark Toof's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Shark Toof's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 70: Morley by Matt Valerio

Los Angeles street artist Morley likes to break up the monotony of everyday routines. He uses witty black and white wheat pastes, often put up strategically based on their surroundings, to provoke thoughts and inject humor when it is needed most.

He uses these wheat pastes to put his own internal thoughts out into the world. Thoughts that he knows others out there can relate to. "Oh Alarm Clock, You Have No Idea What I Can Do With Nine More Minutes," or "I Love You Because We Hate The Same Stuff." They're all quick little reminders not to take ourselves too seriously. Reminders that it's ok to have a little chuckle on your way into work or your way home after a long day.

The art world needs more people who don't take themselves too seriously.

What was the first album you bought?
TAPE: The Pretty Woman Soundtrack. In my defense, my parents had pretty good music taste- so I didn’t need to buy any albums by The Beatles or Tom Waits as they already had them and played them in the house. But I got an infection from hearing the song “The King of Wishful Thinking” by Go West and it was beyond my control. Plus I was 8 years old, so give me a break.

CD: Naughty By Nature’s “19Naughty3.” I wish I could redeem myself with this being better than my first cassette tape, but sadly I cannot. This time you don’t have to give me a break- by 11 I should have known better!

What was the last album you bought?
“Another Eternity” by Purity Ring. It’s pretty good. I got the cover album of Elliott Smith tunes by one of the Avett Brothers on the same day. They’re decent covers for sure but there really is something uniquely magical about Elliott Smith that just can’t be recaptured. I think the attempt was a respectful homage, but on a purely sonic level, any cover of his will always be missing something.

What was your first concert?
White Zombie. It was the “Astro Creep 2000” tour, though- to be honest I went because I had a friend who was really into them and I was more of a fan of the opening band, The Toadies. Looking back, it’s kind of a strange pairing, musically. I still love that first Toadies record, “Rubberneck.” It’s pretty underrated as far as ‘90s post-grunge albums go.

What was your last concert?
Stars at the Henry Fonda Theater in Los Angeles. The band KILLED it and it’s a really great venue. I had seen Built to Spill there right before they broke up. There’s not a bad spot to stand in the house and it’s not obnoxiously large. I don’t bother seeing bands if they outgrow places like The Fonda or the El Rey. I just don’t feel a connection with the band if the venue is huge and overflowing with people.

Was there one album that made a significant impression on you?
“The Blue Album” by Weezer was a monumentally important record for me. After outgrowing “Hip-Hop Hooray” just in time for Nirvana to abruptly end, I found myself searching for a band that I felt represented who I was. At 12-years-old, you really want a band that will be the bones that you can build an identity around. You take your fashion cues from them, your sense of romance, rebellion and swagger. As much as I would have liked to relate to Kurt Cobain or Eddie Vedder, they just seemed too handsome and mythic. Instead, I gravitated to Rivers Cuomo. He sang about seeking refuge in his garage and playing Dungeons and Dragons. It was like he was singing just to me! In a time of somewhat dour music, Weezer seemed happy with who they were. They weren’t ashamed of their nerd status, they wore it as a badge of honor. This was incredibly empowering at a time when I really needed it. Even though the band has since evolved in a direction that I don’t dig, I still wear the same horn rimmed style glasses that Rivers’ sports and take it as a compliment when people say we look alike.

Who is your musical hero?
My all-time biggest musical influence has to be Beatles-era Paul McCartney. I’m a bit of a Beatles nut and in studying their influence, I’m fascinated with how much they altered pop culture and the musical landscape. It’s mind boggling. I saw him play in Dodger Stadium last summer (breaking my “only small and medium sized venue” rule) and it was honestly magnificent. That’s a pretty big word but for me, it’s appropriate. My wife and I had crappy seats but just to hear some of my favorite songs sung by the man who wrote them. I mean- I got to hear “Hey Jude” live! It was a bucket list moment for sure.

How important is music to your creative process?
It’s vital for me. I always say that if my work seems like lyrics to a song you like, then I’ve done a good job. Music is really how I grease the wheels of creativity. I have to have something playing any time I work or create. Silence just feels like a brick wall. When I was developing the idea for what I wanted my work to become, I looked to music because unlike a lot of methods of creative expression, there is a more profound relationship formed between the musician and the audience. You can look at a beautiful painting without forming a connection to the artist because the artist isn’t really part of it. Ditto with film and photography. You can feel a connection to an author but it’s still removed from hearing an artist sing directly in your ears. With music, a 12 year old boy in Iowa can listen to Weezer and finally feel like he’s not alone in this world. I wanted the people that saw my work to feel that same connection. I wanted them to feel like it was someONE, not just someTHING talking to them. This is why I include a drawing of myself in all of my work, to try and realize that connection between two humans and remind those who might see what I do and relate to it, that none of us are alone, and hope is not lost when there’s someone to help you back up, even if that help is just a few words pasted on wall.

 

1. “Life of the Party” - Longwave
2. “Sax Rohmer #1” - The Mountain Goats
3. “The Song In My Heart” - Gomez
4. “Beautiful Beat” - Nada Surf
5. “Scenic Pastures” - Archers of Loaf
6. “Bad Reputation” - Freedy Johnston
7. “That’s How Strong My Love is” - Otis Redding
8. “I Should Have Known Better” - The Beatles
9. “Car” - Built to Spill
10. “To All My Friends” - Atmosphere
11. “'Til I Get There” - Lupe Fiasco
12. “Losers” - The Belle Brigade
13. “(This Is) The Dream of Evan and Chan” - Dntel
14. “Eat, Sleep, Repeat” - Copeland
15. “Every Stone” - Manchester Orchestra
16. “Your Hand In Mine” - Explosions in the Sky
17. “Not Miserable” - Frightened Rabbit
18. “The Tracks of My Tears” - Smokey Robinson and the Miracles
19. “Nowhere We Cannot Go” - Hayden
20. “Place To Be” - Nick Drake
21. “Heartbeats (The Knife cover)” - Jose Gonzalez
22. “To Sing For You” - Donovan
23. “Murder In The City” - The Avett Brothers
24. “Grizzlies” - Jim & Sam
25. “England” - The National

Check out Morley's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Morley's website here.