Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Gnarly Whales / Tragwag split on Swamp Cabbage / Broken Records

Tragwag or That Really Awesome Guy with a Guitar sent this split single from his band and Gnarly Whales. Heavy acoustic guitar, sounding a lot like the Mountain Goats, especially 'Seinfeld is a pretty good tv show' which doesn't have anything to do with that song title as far as I can tell....or it was loosely inspired by sad feelings of it ending? Either way, he's got that John Darnielle reach in the upper registers...the same talky delivery and frantic strumming. "Two Weeks" as well could easily be a long lost Goats track. Imperfect sincerity and emotion. I'm nostalgic for those guys sometimes, that was a time period of Sebadoh, John Davis and the Mountain Goats pretty much constantly...that acoustic guitar collecting dust sounded good again. Hell, even Beck made me think about going to that open mic. What the hell did I know about anything. Tyler's joined by Ali on Banjo and vocals on Texas Sky, which completely reminds me of those days buying anything K Recs or Kill Rock Stars.

Gnarly Whales out of Florida have a slight Doo Rag leaning, all room mic'd cheap acoustics, flat drums, or some kind of percussion, combined with The Dead Milkmen's humor and punk. First of all if I see 5 tracks on your side of a split? I'm into that, no solos, no extended jams or ambient electronics to be had here. Nothing is off limits for these guys, God loves incest, the movie 2012 was bullshit and fuck the of course I'm on board. You don't have to take yourself so fucking seriously, you want to start a band and talk about all the dumb shit in the world...I don't think there's enough of that gong around. Sure douche's blog about how much they love Necco wafers or Code Red Mountain Dew, and no one gives a shit. But in acoustic punk folk song form with the rest of the band punctuating the chorus with a 'hey hey hey' it's going to be a good time and would get my attention if I happened to hear this out behind some shitty bar. They make an impression and have the DIY, who gives a fuck, love it or leave it spirit. I might just be getting older, but I'd take this over most hardcore bursts of's just not going to make it on a mixtape I'd make for my mom. She still has a cassette player. Well maybe the 2012 song, if she saw that piece of crap.

My only beef with this single is why is Fuck the RIAA censored? Even on the insert. I could see if the printing place had some objection or were just being hard asses, you can barely see it...but then even the track God Loves Incest? Incest is obscured? I appreciate the sentiment, but then to not print those terrible words on the sleeve but the xeroxed insert as well? Insanity. And kind of defeats what the song is even about! At least it's on the disc label.

Get it from Tragwag's webstore. All different colors of vinyl with a download code and inserts.


  1. Anonymous3:29 PM

    I'm only posting this anonymous because I don't have an account. Anyways, I own swamp cabbage records, and you nailed it. We had a special deal on the sleeves and thats why its censored.

  2. I knew there was a story behind it...I need profanity!