11 June 2015

CITIZEN FISH


I will freely admit that I joined the CITIZEN FISH camp pretty late in the game. The early '90s were, by most accounts, the heyday of both the band's output and their popularity, but I didn't even see them play live until 1997 (and even then, it was only because Karoline was on tour with them, I am not sure I had ever even heard their music). But it didn't take much to see why people and punks from virtually every subsection of every scene were into the band, and I've been an unabashed fan ever since that first show. I'll still hold Life Size as my favorite record, but please don't ask me to pick a favorite show because there have been to many to choose from...and they are never bad. It just doesn't happen. The Psychological Background Reports are collections of outtakes, field recordings and remixes, things that few bands could pull off in an even remotely interesting fashion, but when CITIZEN FISH digs into the archives, the result is nothing short of fantastic.  This is the first installment, circa 1993....a full hour of dub, reggae, remixes, techno (lest you thought Phil was a latecomer to the electronic music game!), alternates and interviews, all carefully manipulated for your listening pleasure. Sometimes I rip tapes and leave them in the background while I get on with life, but this one held me mesmerized....the manipulation is every bit as effective today as it was then. And, for the record, no matter how many crucial shows (or years?) I missed out on by jumping on the bandwagon late, I wouldn't change a thing about my relationship to the band or their music because it's been nothing short of perfect from that show in San Luis Obispo until today...




3 comments:

zhollows said...

I beat you by only 3 years on that CF bandwagon but I still feel like I jumped on it late too!! You've heard of the show: Schlong, Spitboy, Citizen Fish. Burleigh St. Before Riverwest was even a blip on anyone's radar who lives there now. My friends and I drove up to Milwaukee with a map and a flyer because there was a band playing with someone from the Subhumans in it. Ha! Were we in for a treat! We drove aimlessly around Riverwest looking for anyone who looked remotely punk because we had no idea where we were. When we found the community center we walked up the stairs and knocked on the door. Someone opened the door and asked where we were from. We told him and he said, "Alright! 10-96! Come on in!" That was the show that told me I was part of something small but large. Something vital and maybe even a little special or important. It was community (outside of Kenosha!). I felt like I finally belonged somewhere. I had been to punk shows before then (I had even seen the UK Subs in a crappy dive bar in Kenosha), but that show in 1994 cemented it for me. Stoked on this tape!

Anonymous said...

so that Karoline i could read about in their thanks section was your Karoline! good!, one circle has been closed i guess

Seth Jarvis said...

Their '07 show with MDC here in Dallas was memorable. It was a great one all around other than stepping out for a smoke and seein a dude get stabbed!