Editors note: Weve been asked about the availability of the shirts in our Offensive Gift Guide (Burnt Ends, December 20). No joke, you can buy your own shirts and merchandise including maternity-sized Amatos Bitches shirts and Paul Morrison Free Mustache Rides mugs at The Pitchs page on cafepress.
As someone who was excited about the Pedaljets' rough mixes in 1989 and then devastated by the mastering when the album finally came out, I can assure you that what's now The Pedaljets on OxBlood was the same set of songs, the same performances and an absolutely flat record. So it was an early lesson for me in how much engineering and mastering mattered. To this day, the second-biggest problem I find with music made in Kansas City is that most bands don't know how to record their vocals and their arrangements and mix them so that they sound as good as they can make them live. The first is the narrowness of voice and/or vision, but then I need to pay more attention to the new stuff. I'm looking forward to making a mix of the songs you recommend.
And the Pedaljets really were a terrific band back then. No one else compared to them in terms of songwriting and the intensity of their live shows. When I saw them recently, they showed they still had it in them. Hopefully, with the rerelease of their first album in the new year, they may be reinvigorated enough to try something new. Your review will help.
Very nice to see rap artists head up the year-end list, particularly veterans with such a strong, consistent record! Getting them the cover, even better!
Danny Alexander, Overland Park
I just read Jason Harper's column about Bands Across Kansas City, from back in May. It was ... quite a premonition. My opinion? BAKC are the typically slick hucksters who have been around forever — they just have a new package. Take money from local bands and promise them the world.
Joe Jacobson, Richmond, Missouri