Beatnik Filmstars – Astronaut House
La Di Da, 1994
Acquired: Love Garden, Used, 2008
I can’t remember how I heard about Beatnik Filmstars. I think when I was really starting to embrace my inner pop kid I got some list of like, every indie pop band ever and I really liked the band name. So I picked this record up and it is not indie pop. It is, however, really good mid-90s indie rock. Like a darker, less nuanced Sebadoh. It’s just loud and brash and pretty cool. It gets a little tedious at times but then everything will amp up and the singer will start screaming something and it will be really awesome. The more down-tempo, reserved “Protein +” is a pretty excellent track that I want to play on Alternative Flashback. I’m noticing that the back half of this record, once they calm down a bit (limiting the noisy guitars to segments of songs) the record gets a lot better. Their website refers to them as “The British Guided by Voices” which makes absolutely no sense because they sound nothing like GBV. Maybe on older records…or newer records, given that this is only their second record. It shows promise though, and having listened to this I think I might attack the six-disc Beatnik Filmstars boxset I downloaded last month. The sleeve is also numbered 200/500, and I’m reading that following this record they moved onto Slumberland, then Scratch, then Merge. Three freaking amazing labels, sooo, yeah, must track down later recordings!