WNnG – Musings from the desk of chaz.

Wreckless Rigby
September 20, 2008, 1:33 pm
Filed under: New Music

Sorry for taking a bit to post and for that last rushed post. I was hitting town for a little bit and I wanted to get something up before I left. Back to our program!

This coming Tuesday an album that I didn’t even realize I was highly anticipating until last week, is getting released unto the world. As far as I knew Stiff Records (see: Dirty Looks, Pointed Sticks, Nick Lowe, Elvis Costello, Richard Hell, Pogues and countless more) was gone, but had been leaking their catalog back out to the masses over the last couple years through reissues of old, lost albums. Honestly, I haven’t even been paying attention to the label lately. I figured they were kaput and just rehashing the old. Which is absolutely fine with me, I love the label and I’ll take anything I can get by them. The doors were actually closed from 1986-2006. Not open and not releasing. Losing relevance.

My heart skipped a beat when I saw in the new release book the name WRECKLESS ERIC sitting right beside the words STIFF RECORDS. Have the times flipped on their heads and sent us back into a vortex where something relevant and exciting thirty years ago can get entangled in new releases today – again, thirty years later – and cause me to shake with excitement?! Right here, right now? With the onslaught of powerpop releases by the likes of Gentleman Jesse & His Men, Statues, the Black & Whites and the Tranzmitors, we’ve been seeing a return of the heyday of Stiff Records. Perhaps the bell was heard and Stiff picked up the phone? Just as excited as we are to see a return to true, raw, genuine powerpop? I mean for gawd’s sake, we’ve got reunions by Nikki & the Corvettes and Milk & Cookies happening around us!

Speaking of the sweet sounds of the Tranzmitors, guess who’s now on Stiff Records themselves? Holy shit if that ain’t fitting….

Anyway. I’ll step off my rant.

This Tuesday we’re going to see an album on the shelf by Wreckless Eric and Amy Rigby. Don’t be fooled into thinking this is just a duet album. They are their own self-contained band. It’s gonna be a little bit country, but all sneer and rock’n’roll. Wreckless Eric was at the top of his game back in the late 70s. He was one of the original accidental punkers. Sneer to his vocals, snide lyrics and leaving trails of booze vapors behind him in each grimey club and every dark corner. How he made it this far and looks as healthy as he does, I have absolutely no clue. Go out and pick up one of his old albums, you’ll feel like you’re discovering a lost gem. Amy Rigby comes from a cowpunk background and has old ties to the North Carolina scene. Her voice is heartbreaking and strong and her penned songs mix amazingly well with Eric’s. Together they create a forlorn, heartshaking, grit’n’twang rawk’n’roll band.

I had the amazing fortune of catching one of their 18 US dates last night at the Local 506 with about 25 or 30 other lucky people. Wreckless Eric is for some reason one of my songwriting heroes. Like Westerberg, it’s a good blend of trashiness and sincerity. It was an absolutely amazing show. Grin on my face the entire time. I felt like I was seeing a legend and the two of them were passionate and comfortable and interactive with the crowd. They have a great rapport with each other and pass inside jokes back and forth. It’s no secret they’re a married couple on an endless honeymoon. Great show environment, great show.


3 Comments so far
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i’m a born again straight edge virgin at 40…

Comment by Greg Barbera

From what I understand,the new owners only have the right to the name,not the back catalogue.Not sure who owns that,but our stiff sessions will finally be coming out soon on a Japanese label…PS

Comment by Pointed Sticks

woah! a comment from the Pointed Sticks!! thanks guys!

thanks for the update too. i didn’t realize it was new ownership that’s taken over. that’s kinda a bummer then, so we might not see a resurgence of old Stiff Records stuff? i was kind of hoping we’d see a rash of old LPs back in print. awesome that the name is back in service though.

when did you guys record those sessions???
definitely keep us posted with that release! i’ll for sure be needing a copy of that!


Comment by wnng

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