WTF? Where the hell was I?

>> Sunday, January 24, 2010

So, yesterday I had lunch with my Mom at Intermezzo (you absolutely want the Portabella Mushroom Tower with goat cheese and red peppers as an appetizer, and then try their piroska unless you're a vegetarian) and then I stopped by the grocery store; on the way home, I have The Loft on and they play this great little acoustic track called "Want Her To Stay" by somebody called Dramarama, which I really dig, so when I get home I buy the MP3 version of the album from Amazon. But then I head to Smelly Cat for two or three hours and so I don't immediately listen to it, saving it for when I get home (if I hadn't liked the tunes at the coffee shop, then I would have gone ahead and played it.

And it's while I'm finally listening to it that I realize the fucking album came out in 1985.

Okay, so I'm not shocked shocked--it's not like I can't hear the "'80s-ness" of it, although '80s alternative has become sort of a retro-in-thing in the indie scene, so there's a lot of new bands who are trying to sound like The Smiths or The Pixies, which believe me is not a bad thing in the least. What bugs me is that this is a pretty good band who I like a lot right now and reallyreally would have liked when I was in high school. And I'm discovering them more than a decade-and-a-half after they broke up and nearly a decade after they decided to get back together again. Not only that, but apparently they had a Sort Of Great Big Hit ("Anything, Anything (I'll Give You)") that appeared in a movie I've seen several times.

This would be the point, or just after the point, where several readers are going, "Oh, yeah, Dramarama. I can't believe you never heard of them."

Bite. Me.

What can I say? That it's better late than never? That it's cool the world is big enough for even somebody who lived through an era and is pretty knowledgeable about something to discover something he should've known about that passed him by? That I suck for not already having their whole catalogue on vinyl or bitrotting first-gen CD? Whatever. I'm digging the record, and that's swell enough for me.

From Dramarama's first album, Cinema Verite, released twenty-five years ago this year and first heard by yours truly yesterday, "Scenario" (audio only):


Chez Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 1:19:00 PM EST  

Yeah. You totally deserve to be getting shit for not having heard of Dramarama.

David Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 2:12:00 PM EST  

Eric, you may be just a couple of years too young to have been considered a child of the 80's music scene. ;)

Pick up some Stereolab and The Beautiful South for yourself. I think you may be very impressed.

Eric Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 2:27:00 PM EST  

Err... Dave, I graduated from high school in 1990, which, incidentally, is the year Stereolab got together (they're a '90s band). And, yeah, I own most of their discography.

Nonetheless, Chez is right--I deserve to be getting shit for missing Dramarama, and can offer nothing in my defense. It's not like I wasn't converting the paychecks from the part-time McJobs I worked through high school into vinyl (and later laminated aluminum-coated substrate, which doesn't sound nearly as cool) whenever I had a chance. They just slipped under my radar somehow. Cinema Verite probably should have been a cassette, actually, getting worn out in the tape-adapter slung under the dashboard on the 1973 Honda Civic I was driving in high school.

I'm just happy that while the album is now out-of-print, the wonders of the Internet means you can still buy it now.

David Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 2:34:00 PM EST  

Good! I saw Stereolab perform at the Belly Up tavern in Carlsbad, CA a couple of years ago. Great place to see a show.

I was referring to their sound. They have an 80's "feel" to them. Nice to know you're a fan.

I'd LOVE to have those 4 years back. HS for me was 82 to 86. Amazing time for music.

Janiece Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 2:36:00 PM EST  

I think it's cool when I discover music I missed the first time around. Since I was out of the country for a number of years in both the 80's and the 90's, I missed whole SWATHES of music.

Having said that, however, I do have to pile on with Chez.

Seriously, dude? You've never heard Dramarama? And don't tell me to "bite you," because as a certified UCF Trollop, I just might.

Carol Elaine Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 2:57:00 PM EST  

Yep, Dramarama. Never really listened to them, to be honest - I was never much into 80s music, even though I graduated from high school in 1984 - but I certainly remember hearing of them at the time.

And yes, I remember hearing "Anything, Anything (I'll Give You)" at the time. It was (and is) a pretty kickass song. I really love crunchy guitars. Also - nice bass. The song makes me want to bounce and mosh.

My real incredulous question regarding this entry is: Why ruin perfectly good portabella mushrooms with goat cheese and red peppers? Even when I ate cheese on a fairly regular basis, I thought that was the foulest stuff ever. Goat cheese tastes like the smell of dirty gym socks. And bell peppers are an abomination unto man and G-d.

Eric Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 3:19:00 PM EST  

Oh, CE, you do not know what you're missing. They roast the portabellas and red bell peppers in a little bit of olive oil, then they make a stack out of them with a little bit of goat cheese between each layer--it's sort of like sour cream, I'm not sure if there's anything else they do to the cheese to prepare it. Very light spicing on the whole thing, if any--there may be a small amount of garlic roasted with the peppers and 'shrooms.

It's good. I mean, really, really good.

Nathan Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 3:50:00 PM EST  


I don't know about the rest of these guys, but I forgive you for missing Dramarama their first time around. I have some vague memory of them having existed, but not much more than that. (In my defense...I'm old) :D

And C.E.

You may choose to forsake the tasty goodness of all things autonomously mobile; that's your choice. You may compare goat cheese to toe-jam (and you'll get no argument from me). But when you dare to disparage the excellence of bell peppers, be they green, red, yellow, orange or purple...well, then and I are gonna have a problem. Take it back!

Carol Elaine Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 4:39:00 PM EST  

Eric, trust me, I'm not missing it at all. I purely hate both bell peppers and goat cheese. Can't miss that which I hate.

Nathan, I'm not taking it back - hatehateHATE bell peppers. Always have and seemingly always will. Periodically I try them to see if my tastes have changed - it's certainly happened before. Every single time I discover I still hate them. I can take chili peppers in salsa, but that's about it.

Think of it this way: even more peppers for you!

Eric Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 4:53:00 PM EST  

But CE, it's so good I want everybody to have some.

Yes, I'm reduced to proselytizing for a vegetable.

Carol Elaine Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 5:42:00 PM EST  

Eric, don't. I hate proselytizing more than I hate peppers, so proselytizing for peppers? I will run the other way.

I'm the same way with tomatoes. I loveloveLOVE tomatoes. CuteFilmNerd will only eat tomatoes in tomato sauce form if it's smooth and on a pizza. Or if it's part of chili or BBQ sauce. It makes me sad. See?


holysio = The Vatican - with a really bad accent.

Eric Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 6:01:00 PM EST  

Mmm... tomatoes on pizza.

::starts thinking about dinner::

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