I’m Conan Neutron of Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends. Some of you may know me from the band Replicator, many more of you probably know the dude that plays drums for Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends… Mr. Dale Crover of the Melvin, even more of you probably don’t know me at all. And that is ok.
Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends got out on tour quite a bit this fall. We covered a lot of territory and played with a lot of great bands. We also released a compilation of the split singles that we put out over the last two years. Protons and Electrons. The bands on the other side of the splits all play in/record with or have some importance to the story of Conan Neutron & the Secret Friends. It’s collected as a 2XLP, 2XCD and streaming comp now.
Here is a selection of some of my favorites:
NYC rockers. I had been informed by multiple rockers in the know that they were: “Totally warped!” “a mindfuck!” and other various hyperbole laden superlatives. I’m glad to say that they are 100% right.
Riding the fine line between the weirder side of AmRep, Captain Beefheart, Brainiac and… man, I don’t even know. I will say that I am 100% here for it. Absolutely stellar and crazily awesome band. If more “noise rock” bands were as inventive as this, I think it’d be a much better genre.
From Queens, NY and coming from the tradition of the great American rock band, R/R just writes great songs. They also happen to be 3 of the most viciously smart and sarcastic MFers you’ll ever meet, but that’s in parallel to them writing absolutely badass and hook laden rock songs. The first record is great, but the second one is the one I favor. Awesome band.
We Ride On
Brooklyn rippers! Immediate no frills, high intensity propulsive rock. If you like the music and feel of bands like Hot Snakes, this is a band you should know.
Hopefully we’ll get another record out of them eventually!
Really new band from Toronto that impressed me greatly! Very much in the post-punk/noiserock world with an excellent lady vocalist/bass player belting it out. Definitely a band to watch.
A highly recommended Canadian duo! They fill up quite a bit of space and they do it well. Intense, propulsive and also hooky! I’m down for every part of their whole thing and they made a very favorable impression on me. Kind of hard to pin down musically, but fans of the noisy rock will dig them.
See also: Around 2018 in 12 Weeks: Favorite Albums – Reader’s Poll!
An excellent indie rock band, quite a departure from most of the rest of this list, but well worth including for those open to that genre of music (I am!)
I believe this is the song that is a tribute to Robert Pollard.
Pittsburgh dissonance purveyors on Three One G. They’ve been around a really, really long time and have continued to be awesome all the while. For fans of Arab On Radar, Voivod, Snakefinger, Beefheart, Don Cab.
Yes, yes. you already know if you like this.
See also: Listen: Eat My Guts Then Eat Some More
Oakland, CA wiry post-punk! Recommended for fans of classic Gang of Four, Wire as well as people that are into stuff like Unwound, Mocket, etc. I hope they get that new stuff released soon!
Tom Flynn’s new band! (Duh, Fang, Star Pimp)… really cool stuff. Respect your (noisy) elders, young’uns. ESPECIALLY if they aren’t household names.
It’s been very enheartening to see the one alien army that is Reptoid start to catch on amongst the lovers of weirdo rock. Providing a live experience that is far more intense than most 4 person bands, the music of Reptoid picks up the Lightning Bolt model, adds in bits of the more interesting parts of the Locust, Hella and Arab on Radar and comes out with a sound all its own. Stately! Rumor has it there’s a new record coming through Learning Curve in 2020. Watch for that!
A very awesome newer band from Orange County(!) that is worth paying attention to. A rock band with dark vocals that comes from the world of punk but aren’t dicks about it.
Kevin from the Cows/Melvins and Paul from Qui.
Insane members of pedigree, but they have a sound and feel all of their own. This song features Melvins (and Conan Neutron and the Secret Friends!) drummer Dale Crover.
Who? Jokes, obviously the most well known band on here. They have a new record, we played with them and I thought it was a great fit. They do what they do really well, I’m a huge fan of heavy bands with melodic vocals. They do it with hook and aplomb and with he spirit and fun of bands like Van Halen.