Tuesday, September 18, 2007

THE BRENTWOODS, MATRIARCHS OF THE 1990s OLDIES SCENE

Anyone who’s heard THE BRENTWOODS’ 1994 LP “Fun In South City” – and there aren’t many of us, unfortunately – is still trying to get that ringing sound out of their ears & get that leg to stop twitching. I figured it was high time that I posted a few tracks from that album; no full LP from us – what do you think we are, some sorta illegal Rapidsharing site? I wrote a little bit about this on my old blog – so here’s what was said:

THREE CHEERS FOR THE LOST 1990s “OLDIES” SCENE!....Anyone out there remember a San Francisco Bay Area 1950s teen-sound combo called THE BRENTWOODS, who were active just over a half-decade ago? Their profile was so low, despite an impressive pedigree (Darin and Karen, ex-SUPERCHARGER + an ex-TRASHWOMEN & more), that even those of us who were living here pretty much missed them (I had to order their wildly underpressed LP “Fun In South City” directly from the band, who lived about 8 miles from my house). I just digitized their entire 1994-98 ouevre minus one single I could never find, and the whole package is quite a hoot. Comprised of five 45s and an LP, the Brentwoods' work is not for the audiophile nor for the easily annoyed. Their m.o. was flat-out, full-contact dance party rock, with a heavy tilt toward a mongrelized farfisa-drenched garage punk/good-time oldies mix, all recorded more or less live and on cheap equipment to boot. Lots of screams, yelps and hollers, and you certainly have to love the chutzpah of a band that puts its woefully inept female singer (who sounds like she might be about 15) front and center, and then encourages her to yell herself raw.

The band had an inexplicable attachment to their hometown of South San Francisco, a blue-collar suburb with a decaying bowling alley from which the band took their name. A good two thirds of the songs have references that only an upper Peninsula maven could figure out, including many that mention the cryptic “Buri Buri”, which I believe is a So. SF neighborhood & which The Brentwoods have made into a teen dance of their own. Listening to each stomping, screaming 90 second track, it’s clear there’s really not a lot to figure out here – The Brentwoods were an oldies band, they thoroughly enjoyed going to parties, and they planned to take the USA by storm with dances like “The Bug” and “The Doofus Stomp”. Another key draw here are the frequent vague jabs made at thin-skinned ex-Supercharger guitarist Greg Lowry and his then-band the RIP OFFS. The LP’s cover art alone is one long cartoon about how the Brentwoods and their fans could easily beat up the Rip Offs (cleverly cloaked as “The Riff-Raffs” here) in a street fight. If you loved the calculated no-talent genius of SUPERCHARGER, and it would be hard not to, you just might be able to handle this. Now the trick is getting
Radio X (Darin’s label) to get back in business, put it together and push it out to the kids. Good luck!

and

BRENTWOODS : “GO LITTLE SPUTNIK / SOUTH CITY SHINGLE & SHAKE” 45....I professed my undying devotion to
this near-mystery mid-90s rave-up party band last year in the pages of Agony Shorthand, and included a veiled whine about the 45 of theirs I was missing. Well what do you know, vocalist Patty up & sent me the one I was missing (autographed!), this after I called her a “woefully inept” singer “who sounds like she’s 15”, She knows and you know I meant it in the very best sense of “woefully inept”. The 45 that escaped me is as pepped-up bonkers & go-go-go as their other ones – quick, bursting with energy and teen screams, and recorded so on the cheap that I’ll bet the session’s donut run cost more than the "studio time". It also includes the band’s usual array of unfunny but nonetheless charming skits and spoken tomfoolery bookending the two songs. I’ll take it! Hats off to Patty and her crrrrrrazy 90s shenanigans!

Play or Download THE BRENTWOODS – “Buri Buri Bash” (from “Fun In South City” LP)
Play or Download THE BRENTWOODS – “Little Barfy Bobby” (from “Fun In South City” LP)
Play or Download THE BRENTWOODS – “Go Go Shingle & Shake” (from “Fun In South City” LP)
Play or Download THE BRENTWOODS – “Chow Fun San Mateo” (from “Fun In South City” LP)

8 comments:

luKe said...

i think i own one of the few copies that made it to europe at the time - it's a fun record but i don't consider this classic à la loli & the chones or supercharger...

Eric O said...

i think it furthers the "who cares if we can play" deal that supercharger's first album had (2nd was almost too strong!) and the sloppiness and harsh-ish sound just added to the party. Really in it's own world, even if you can tell what worlds they came from... i love it!

Donny Denim (aka DD & The Meatballs) at Gonerfest this year! Who coulda thunk it?

John said...

I need cover art! I have Fun In South City, Go Get Bent 7", Go Little Sputnik 7", New Girl 7", and one called All Stars 7" but I can't find any cover art.

Yes, I'm one of those people that has to have the cover art in their media player...what of it?

Can anyone help me out?

Artie Mondello said...

C'mon, Darrin ain't never gonna put this out again! Let's have the whole thing!!! C'MON!!!

pretty please?

Anonymous said...

Trashwomen in Deep Space still does not get the credit it deserves.

BTW the the 1st two Brentwoods 45s were sooper-awesome too.

Hey can you do a post re: Tom Guido?

B.C. Thunderthud said...

re: cover art. I posted a little Radio X + most of The Brentwoods flood to a.b.s.mp3.garage-rock a few years ago but I didn't include any art. I'll try to get it all up on rateyourmusic.com eventually.

I tried to photograph this album but I'm not sure I can post it large enough to really read the whole thing. I'll give it a try though.

Anonymous said...

Put the rest up man

you cant find this stuff anywhere

Anonymous said...

PLEASE LET US HAVE THE REST OF THE BRENTWOODS' STUFF !!!!!

life isn't fair.