Trouser Press Thursdays #1 – January 1979

Fun Fact #1: Devo is one of my favorite bands, so it’s great to see them kicking off the New Year and this blog series.

Fun Fact #2: I wasn’t alive when this issue came out. I was born in March 1979.

With the headline of this issue being “DEVO: Future of Rock or Total Crock?”, you would expect the usual blown-out piece delving deep into the psyche of Devo, but surprisingly they have three different writers each with their take on Devo – one writer believing they’re the future of rock, one writer believing they’re a total crock, and the one writer somewhere in the middle.

What I thought of the article and their opinions? We are B-O-R-E-D.

You know what’s worse than people sitting around arguing about a band? Reading five pages of it.

Let’s just get into it……

From the D. McKinney Collection

Unfortunately, I don’t have the December 1978 issue so we’ll never know who are the greatest guitarists from part one. Spoiler Alert: The list is alphabetical.

By the way, $1.25 equals $4.56 in 2021.

Ugh. If there’s one thing worse than a Todd Rundgren fan, it’s a prog rock dude.

And here’s the offensive cover in question.

I would think that Hall & Oates would be a little too square for this magazine, but I guess not. Glad to see them as a LP choice.

Raving Faves is a fave of mine. I feel they ask fairly insightful questions that make you actually have to think.

Let’s go back to the bars with Todd Rundgren and then we’ll pop into the future with Phil Manzanera.

The Paley Brothers broke up shortly after this article was published. And after working with Phil Spector.

I’ve never heard of Jules Shear and the Polar Bears until now. Reading this interview made me want to hibernate.

Keep in mind – they’re basing their boring long-winded opinions off of one album (Duty Now for the Future was released in July 1979.) This back-and-forth gave me an uncontrollable urge to go take a nap. AND I LOVE DEVO!

Maybe I’m just a dumb-ass, but I’ve never heard Robbie Robertson referred to as Jaime Robbie Robertson.

This is from the “Greatest Guitarists Part Two” article. No shame on Jaime, but they just threw every fucking guitarist they know of on this list. Don’t believe me? Lou Reed is on this list.

I think it’s time we stop
Children, what’s that sound?
Listening to this shit just makes me frown

I actually really enjoyed this interview. I didn’t know exactly who John Wetton was ( you know – prog dudes), but I found the interview informative, interesting and not boring. I also noticed that the writer, Jon Young, also does the record reviews and they were pretty funny too. As of right now, Jon Young is my favorite Trouser Press writer.

I love that other the the Nick Lowe and Robert Gordon shirt, you had no idea what the shirt you were ordering looked like. Fuck it – take my money!

Early Stones?

I’m a sucker for mascots. Especially weird hippie burn-out mascots.

Excuse you? That’s DAVID COVERDALE’S Whitesnake to you.

I’ve actually seen Whitesnake (not David Coverdale’s Whitesnake) and he was great. They did play some shit from this era and he wore a bedazzled Deep Purple shirt.

Why can’t I just throw it all away?

I wish I could tell my co-workers I won’t run their stuff because it looks like shit.

I discovered Gary Wilson about 20 or so years ago when they re-released You Think You Really Know Me on CD and I bought a copy at Tower Records. I remember liking it then, but when I revisited the album a couple of months ago, I just couldn’t. To quote Danny Glover in all of the Lethal Weapons – “I’m getting too old for this shit.”

You couldn’t do these contests today. The Cheap Trick contest requires actual writing and not TikToks and the Gentle Giant contest actually requires you to have knowledge about Gentle Giant. There was no Google back then, so you really had to know your Gentle Giant shit (or at least know a record store dude that liked Gentle Giant.)

Now, get off my lawn!

As much as a bitched about weird music in the Gary Wilson post above, I do like R. Stevie Moore.

But one thing I DON’T like is fucking rats.

And we end this issue with The Residents and Elton John (he wasn’t a Sir back in 1979.) I love Some Chickens the same way I love Some Kazoos from the Temple City Kazoo Orchestra – the way they both rip on The Stones is hilarious (at least it is to me.) I’ll be honest with you – I didn’t even know that this Elton John record existed until seeing this ad.

Thanks for joining me on this musical trip back to January 1979. I have a feeling we’ll be getting into some better and more exiting music soon.

See you in February 1979!

  • D. McKinney

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