“SONG FOR EWE”
with BRETT NETSON of
BUILT TO SPILL & BRETT NETSON & SNAKES
“SONG FOR EWE” is the feature where artists & music people beloved by VELVET SHEEP choose an obscure song they’ve been listening to that day. Today’s guest is a founder member of Boise, Idaho indie rock legends Built To Spill. He was also in the band Caustic Resin but now has an ace group called Brett Netson & Snakes. He’s also a programmer and DJ at the community radio station Radio Boise KRBX 89.9FM (reference to which will become clearer later), and he’s a hirsute and astute rocker. It’s Mr. Brett Netson…!
I was lucky enough to interview Built To Spill back in the original fanzine day backstage when they supported Foo Fighters at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, and then also seen at ULU and then randomly at the House of Blues, Mandalay Bay Hotel on the Vegas Strip, where they were supported by one of their influences – Camper Van Beethoven (of “Take The Skinheads Bowling” fame). Here’s my favourite ever BTS tune, which I called out for them to play at HoB to no effect (it’s from a K Records albumc comp called “The Normal Years” and was recorded by good VS friend Calvin Johnson)…
Nowadays, this is a taster of the Snakes…
and hot off the press from Brett, here’s an update on his latest activities:
“I got a label going now (Scavenger Cult). And a Caustic Resin re issue that I’m trying to get rid of. Its real nice.”
and without further ado, it’s over to Brett for a pleasingly detailed “song for ewe”…
“I had a regular listener to my radio show come in and bring a few things, he had heard me play songs off “Call of the West” and “Index Masters” by Wall of Voodoo. I had heard Stan Ridgeway’s stuff after Wall of Voodoo “Don’t Box Me In” and “Just Drive She Said” and they were… okay. Those songs were minor hits at the time and were kinda overly slick sounding. When I had rediscovered “Call of the West” in recent years, I had briefly looked into that record and didn’t look any further.
So, my friend Steve shows up with a band called Drywall in his pile. I vaguely remember seeing the cover in bargain bins over the years and asked him about it. “Stan Ridgeway’s band with his wife, after Wall of Voodoo!” “Does it suck” I asked him… “You gotta just check it out.” So I went ahead and played it on the show and fuck yeah! The dark, sordid character profiles found on the Wall of Voodoo records was in full force on this! Nice!
Stan has a novel wit, that does an excellent job of creating mini cinematic profiles. The dark side of life. This song, “New Blue Mercedes” is the kind that I love. Inspirational to me. A thieving hard case who claims to be “taking back America” by stealing rich peoples cars!!! Hahahaha!!!! Well, in this time especially, the only person talking about taking back America is either a rich douchey white person buying artisan beard oils in their 300.00 jeans OR some right wing jack ass asserting their junior high fantasy of libertarian utopia that only suits them. Likely, a regular run of the mill criminal could give a shit about what America is or isn’t and is purely in it for himself, but man, it is uplifting to me imagining people straight up getting shitty and taking things from the rich. Haha, fuck you asshole! Ive lived some parts of my life in the way of the criminal, but have managed to let all that go. This song is an uplifting message of revolt by the “great unwashed”. I know they’re out there and ready to get shitty with those assholes.
But this is just an art piece after all and I am in no way advocating violence against the rich, its just something I think about… somewhat frequently… I mean… uh. I am a law abiding citizen you see.
Anyway, if you can get past the silly ass digital synth sounds of the 90’s, this is another cool record in the vein of the first three Wall of Voodoo records. Fun stuff.”
“Also very good is the song “Police Call””
MORE ON BRETT NETSON & SNAKES HERE…at Brett’s label Scavenger Cult