Merge XX!

Oh snap, hometown heroes Merge Records are turning “XX” this year!!! (That’s the indie-rock-hobo-symbol for “20.”)

I grew up in Chapel Hill so I know all about Merge Records and all the records they put out. I even have some old 7″ singles from classic NC bands like Zen Frisbee, Bicycle Face (were they on Merge or Moist? Can’t remember), and Jodeci.

LOL, remember when Jodeci was on Merge? Those shows at the Cradle were amazing. I remember once when Bicycle Face opened up for Jodeci, that show was off the hook. (I guarantee for the .04 people who understand that joke, it is the greatest joke of all time.)

Also, remember when Erectus Monotone and Jodeci put out that split 7″ single? Amazing, both bands recorded live at Duck Kee studios, amazing session. I think Evil Weiner wanted in on the action, but the guys in Jodeci didn’t like Evil Weiner’s Christmas shows at the Hard Back Cafe and so they put the kibosh on it.

I remember that each Merge record came with a little slip of paper inside it, where Mac would type something like, “Hope everyone likes this new James Taylor single, we think it’s awesome, it’s called ‘Fire and Rain,’ pump it up and ROCK! Here’s what we’re listening to these days … (and then he’d list the most obscure pop bands on Earth and you’d feel like an idiot for not knowing what he was talking about, like, “The Feelies?” What’s that? Why are all the bands from New Zealand all of a sudden?)

Anyway, let’s celebrate Mac and Laura’s accomplishment by posting youtube videos of some of my favorite Merge jams. (Remember, as I have explained countless times, my musical knowledge basically stops at 1996.)

Here’s a classic, from one of my favorite indie rock albums:

Good ol’ Polvo. I have the version of this album with the lions on the cover that had to be recalled because they stole the image from the Mormon Church(?) or something. Anyway, I wore out that CD.

More Merge memories to come …