This is BY FAR the biggest and longest record EVER RELEASED ON QUOTE UNQUOTE! Yeee-ha! It's all by America's sweethearts, Shinobu - the saviors of jangly noodly punk rock. Like Pavement getting into a car crash, like Built to Spill drinking Steel Reserve instead of experimenting with psychedlics. This band = the real fucking deal. This album contains 30 unreleased tracks including alternate versions of songs you already love and loving versions of alternative songs.
Click here to download the full album!
1. Not Gonna Happen
2. California Sun
3. Party With Your Parents
4. Whatsoever You Will Throw, It Will Fall
5. Moms & Dads & Electric Guitars
6. Stairway to the Stairs
7. Can Dialects Break Bricks? (Video Version)
8. City of Hope Needs Blood
9. Baby Baby (Going Steady Cover)
10. Julian Castle Agrees With Newt That Everything is Meaningless
12. I Am a Lightning Bolt
13. This Wonderful Device
15. Regular Love Triangle
16. Oh, Vignettes!
17. Can Dialects Break Bricks?
18. Shoot the Sky Down
19. Strength Through Wounding (AFI Cover)
20. The Dance at Delmonico's
21. Tomorrow's Here
22. Herostratus vs. Time
23. Dear Thomas Merton
24. Ventura, Ventura, Space People
25. You Won't Last (Acoustic Version)
26. Teachers Get Tired (Plea for Peace Version)
27. Not Gonna Stop Rockin'
28. Good Pitch
29. Dinosaur Keegman
30. Vince's Jam
After recording our horrible first EP, we came crawling back to the same guy and recorded a few more songs. Not Gonna Happen, and You Won't Last came from that session.
A friend was working on an independent film called "Glory Boy Days" and he asked us to cover California Sun for the soundtrack.
Party With Your Parents and Whithersoever You Throw it both came from the long period between Worstward, Ho! and Strange Spring Air.
Moms & Dads v.2, and City of Hope were on a Springman Records comp that had very impractical physical dimensions.
Stairway to the Stairs was kicking around for a long time, but we never really did anything with it.
Can Dialectics Break Bricks was written around the same time as Herostratus, but never got fully released until Worstward, Ho! This is the original recording, and the version we used for the music video.
Tracks 9-18 were going to comprise a CD to be released in Japan. I still don't know why that never happened.
Strength Through Wounding, Dinosaur Keegman, and Not Gonna Stop Rockin' all came from the Strange Spring Air sessions. There's still another song from that time that we never finished. Maybe we'll do something with that sometime.
Tracks 20-24 were recorded by our friend Dave right around the time we were working on Herostratus vs. Time. As you can see, we had a title track that (thankfully) never got used.
Teachers Get Tired was one of the first post-Worstward songs we wrote. This is an early recording of it that was used on the second Plea for Peace compilation.
Good Pitch will explain itself in time.
And finally, [this] is Shinobu as we are today, acting as back-up band for our original second guitarist, Vince Tran. It seemed like a nice way to come full circle on this collection.
Enjoy what you can.
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A STORY OF SORTS!!!
Like all good relationships, Shinobu began with a series of lies.
Unbeknownst to me, a friend of mine had defrauded the good people of San Jose, rigging the voting process and causing me to win "Best Local Guitarist of the Year" in local weekly the San Jose Metro, for 2002--a year I wasn't really playing guitar. A friend who ran a venue downtown offered to put on a show, hitching our wagon to the coattails of that fleeting bit of miniscule press. He said he would let me pick the headliner, as long as I would get a band together to open up the show. I wanted to play with Rocket From the Crypt and he said that that was fine, so I started thinking about who to play music with.
That offer to put on a dream show for a young 18 year old turned out to be another lie. The dude's venue had also won an award in the Metro, and it turned out he had been drinking a lot of the free champagne at the event. When I went to ask him about it later he was nice but made it clear that it was all Dutch thunder. So the show didn't work out, but it did get me to start thinking about writing songs.
The first song I wrote was "This Wonderful Device" (represented here by a later version recorded for a Japan only album that never saw release). At that time I had started to fill in on 2nd guitar for a friend's band. Jon was the drummer, and I knew he didn't only listen to punk music, so I asked him if he'd want to start a different band. He learned my one song, and then I further spun the web of lies by saying that I had "a bunch more written," when, in fact, I hadn't even had any other ideas yet.
And so began the hideous decline that is or was Shinobu.
Bob had a digital 16-track which was originally his brother's, and we had gone to high school together, become friends, and started a "Newer Wave" band called Rage Against the Robots. Our friend Ruben played guitar, Bob played the midi-keys, and I just yelped. We stopped that after it got a little boring, but once Jon was on board with the new band I asked Bob if he wanted to learn the bass and then play the bass in this band we were starting. No lies this time.
Jon's friend Vince (who eventually became our friend Vince) was enlisted to play guitar because he played guitar and because we would all play Puzzle Fighter and Seiken Densetsu 3 together on Jon's computer. But once it was time to start touring it became clear that those plans didn't fit in with his own, so we recruited my best friend Matt to fill in, and Vince stepped out of the weird circle.
Matt and I had gone to elementary school together. Then middle school together. Then different high schools. Then started to hang out and listen to music and yell at each other. When he joined Shinobu, it all kind of made sense. Now he plays in Bomb the Music Industry, breaking his back under the cracking of Jeff Rosenstock's dictatorial whip.
Shinobu is the first thing I ever really did with all of me. It is the first time I opened myself up to criticism, and the first time I shared my real thoughts (however incomplete or incompetent they were), and for that reason--along with the fact that these guys will always be my best friends--it is very special to me. We have been through a lot of years, a whole hell of a lot of America, a small but notable portion of Japan, three full
lengths, and a lot of assorted releases together. It has all been great, from top to bottom. At this point I've grown comfortable with the uncertainty of Shinobu's future. It was a sincerely horrifying thought for a long time, but I've come to accept that things do not always move in the rhythms that you hope or expect. It is supremely difficult to synch four lives to the same metronome, and even more difficult to convince the rest of the world that it is worth hearing the beat of that metronome. We do, however, still have a lot of shit that we recorded.