Friday, September 18, 2009

Friday Five: Top 5 Albums from Merge Records

This summer, Chapel Hill's own Merge Records celebrated 20 years of being in business. And there's a book detailing the ups and downs of the label. To understand Merge from a fan and musician's point of view, I could think of no one better than crazy Duncan Webster, the lead singer of Durham's Hammer No More The Fingers.

Duncan (left, bass), Joe (right, guitar) and Jeff (drums) of Hammer No More The Fingers

Duncan is the most mild-mannered guy in person but undergoes a Clark Kent towards the wild side once on stage as HNMTF's frontman. Here are Duncan's top 5 albums from Merge:

5. Destroyer - This Night

I first heard songs from this record on WXDU 88.7. The Duke University student station. I have memories of listening to this on a Greyhound bus journey down to Florida to visit some friends. Dan Bejar also plays in New Pornographers, who are one of Hammer's favorite bands. He has a pretty unique voice.

4. Polvo - Celebrate The New Dark Age

My friend Nick Wallhausser bought this record when we were in 6th grade. I have many memories of us jamming out to this at his house. It's the scariest, most intense indie rock you will ever hear. I saw them live at Vanish Fest a year later. My parents dropped me off at the show. It was at the old Durham Bulls park. They played two 15 minute long songs. That was their set. Pretty crazy stuff.

3. Spoon - Girls Can Tell

I saw these guys open for Superchunk at Cat's Cradle in, I think, 2002. I had never heard of them. The crowd was totally blown away. Little did I know they would become one of the most well known indie bands of the decade. "Lines In The Suit" is one of the sexiest songs I've ever heard.

2. Shark Quest - Battle Of The Loons

I bought this CD from the used bin at Poindexter records in Durham. Beautiful instrumental rock. One of the first times hearing cello in indie rock.

1. Rosebuds - Life Like

I bought this album at a Rosebuds show back in 2008. It's been in constant rotation since. It's their latest and possibly greatest. I love "In The Backyard." Great song.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I commend the Destroyer, but no "In the Aeroplane over the Sea"?


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