Thursday, December 8, 2016
Them Are Us Too
Let me take you to hell before I take you to heaven.
This afternoon, as is my Thursday custom while navigating home from work on the dreaded 405 I tuned my radio dial to 88.9 FM for Michael Stock's always brilliant Part Time Punks radio show. If was a fairly normal day and my mood was even keel. At about 3:00 PM the show's appropriated theme song kicked in and I readied myself for awesomeness. After Heavenisanincubator, Mr. Stock is about the best damn musical curator/gatekeeper I know of and I value the music he introduces me to more than I can ever say. Today however, as the Television Personalities's ebbed out and Michael came on the mic something was amiss. You could immediately tell he was fighting back tears. I became tense; this was raw and unexpected and I tend to empathize strongly with people I care for, whether they are of the variety that I know personally or not. My weekly guide into music delivered a heartfelt and very emotional explanation for his state: a friend of his, Cash Askew, had died last weekend in the Oakland, CA fire that has peppered national news reports since. My heart went out to this man who has given so much to me from such a distance; as I listened to him describe his affection for Cash's band, Them Are Us Too I felt his loss, a loss no doubt shared by many others. He closed his opening in distress and began to play the band's music.
And I fell in love with yet another band Michael Stock has played on his radio show.
I did not know the people involved in this drama but this music, like so much of what Mr. Stock has turned me on to, is beautiful, amazing, and worth a lifetime of attention. I ordered a copy of Them Are Us Too's album Remain on vinyl (if you dig this and wish to follow suit you can do so on their record label Dais Record's website HERE) and said a silent salutation to the Universe on behalf of this lovely, fallen artist. I can think of no better way to honor her memory than by listening and sharing her music and donating to the Oakland Fire Relief Fund.
Below I've embedded Them Are Us Too's Part Time Punks Session. Follow this bandcamp link to hear Remain.