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1:55 is a weekly newsletter for Patreon Gatekeepers.

Genie, you’re free. After borderline-redeeming Fest Month by just hanging out and watching bands play at Fest (turns out this is the best way to experience music?), we’re heading into the final month of 155 “season one.” As announced on Discord, this will be the last month with covers - we’ve got big plans for December and will be switching up the format in the new year. Closing doors, opening windows. That’s the 155 promise. But if you’ve been waiting to submit your masterpiece, No-Theme-Ber is your time to shine.

Let’s go.

JHNNY COBRA “Can You Mix Grindcore, Hip Hop and Synths Yes but It Will Sound Like This”

Sam: As a lifetime scare-lover and noted simple man, I love embracing the most literal signifiers of this extremely fun and corny time of year. That means plenty of synths playing every day and all night, but when the John Carpenter gets a little too dour, I turn to this shit to keep the vibes up while still solidly seasonal. There are more deliberately horror-esque tracks on JNNY COBRA’s Straight Ballin' The Left Hand Path with titles like “A Virgins Severed Head Two Fries And A Coke” and “Raise The Roof And Raise The Dead,” but this is the one that I feel fully delivers on the promise of a highly stupid mashup of typically severe dark synthwave and straight up beautiful idiot party music. Catch me dancing to this Saturday night in my friend’s backyard Halloween party until I’m asked to turn it off.

Josiah: The art for this is absolutely wretched. It looks like a sticker for a foam party that you see slapped on the Spanish Fly machine in a piss-soaked bar bathroom, and you can’t tell if the sticker is grosser than the phrase “if she’s a screamer, you’ll be arrested.” The art is so nasty that the song was long over by the time I stopped thinking about how gross it looked and was ready to listen. So who knows what just happened here. But I feel like I have to pee now.

The Lion’s Daughter “Neon Teeth”

Sam: A few years ago the Lion’s Daughter released Future Cult, an album that absolutely rocked and filled some measure of space in the Genghis Tron-sized hole in my heart that has since been filled by actual new Genghis Tron. Their latest, Skin Show, is a little less unhinged and slightly more calculated, but it still seeks to answer the age-old question “what if Fabio Frizzi was signed to Season of Mist” and there is no avoiding the fact that this a cool question to ask. It’s definitely cool that a band who sounds this serious has a song called “Werewolf Hospital.”

Josiah: As soon as the YouTube link loads and you see it’s some stupid anamorphic aspect ratio it’s easy to expect some pretentious (but in a bad way) bullshit. So I was shocked to learn that they had just used that to display their little album art promo. Love the John Carpenter synths, and it was kinda funny when the metal came in. But the rest is not for me. Nice to know Sam’s having a nice time, though.
Katy Perry “All You Need Is Love” (The Beatles cover)

Josiah: This fucking newsletter always pops up when I’m like long past the desire to go poking around online to find some new music to check out. But then I begrudgingly scroll through music blogs, seeing all the people I’ve never heard of or know and don’t like, and then I find something like this. Katy Perry covering the Beatles for a Gap commercial. It’s healingly basic. I also watched the Vanessa Hudgens Architectural Design home tour on YouTube and it had the same vibe. Maybe the secret is to get a lobotomy. Then you can just think about how all you need is love. And vibes.

Sam: Getting pretty worried that my most-referenced pod movie is Love Actually but listening to this and realizing that I cannot separate an all-time great pop song from its cloying usage in the world’s most annoying wedding scene is distressing. I am fully Actually-brained. I probably should get that lobotomy.
Tiger King 2

Josiah: But maybe I’m just too freaking twisted to bask in life as a normie…. After all, I love random-as-hell things like freaking Tiger King and the Basket lady. And they’re making more of it! Is it Christmas already? Honestly, though, the first season of Tiger King was so gross. It felt so exploitative and nasty, and I’ll forever be sad that it was produced by the guy who made American Movie, which was tonally the exact opposite version of a similar thing. I haven’t watched the trailer for Tiger King season 2, I’m just putting it in here so I don’t have to listen to new music.

Sam: Gotta disagree a little with my good friend Josiah here. Was every single thing surrounding the monumental pop culture moment that was Tiger King’s early pandemic success annoying? Yes. Did it have a possibly permanent detrimental effect on American documentary filmmaking? I think so; it’s natural for one successful project to beget a hundred imitators, but the way that every platform became exclusively interested in finding their own Tiger King in 2020 sent plenty of amazing documentary filmmakers down a dark and shitty path because, well, they need to make a living. I was in meetings about this! It was depressing as hell! But! Was the initial experience of watching Tiger King fun before Josiah started using “Carol freaking Baskins” as a punchline in every tweet? It ruled! I loved it! Will I watch this? Yes! Will I love it! Probably not this looks like fucking shit! Fuck!
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