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Suburban Lawns.

I’m sure some of my music nerd friends know of this band already, but it was exciting still for me to “discover” a band that existed well over 30 years ago now, and for a very brief period (a total recording output of about 50 minutes via 1 single, 1 LP and 1 EP). I was watching Fast Times At Ridgemont High a few weeks ago, and there was a scene where the character Mark (played by the fantastic Brian Backer) was in his bedroom, and in the corner you could see a poster for this band on the door. The name ‘Suburban Lawns’ just connected with me for whatever reason, so I looked it up and it turns out they were a very big pop punk band in the LA area (they were from Long Beach) whose debut album was released by IRS (home of R.E.M., the Buzzcocks, etc) and their debut single even had it’s video directed by famed director Jonathan Demme. They were destined for things much bigger, to be catapulted from their enthusiastic home base to a nationwide audience, but it just never happened. Maybe it was lead singer Su Tissue’s curious vocal delivery and awkward performance style, or maybe it was just the over saturation of bands in the same style of the day, but whatever the reason, they are a band worth checking out today. To me, there is a bright urgency to their sound. With one to two minute bursts of squeaky vocals, Talking Heads-esque bass, colorful backing vocals and choppy melodies that are hard to get out of your head, Suburban Lawns were pretty special.  Sadly, their small discography is pretty hard to find. No cd or vinyl reissues, and it seems no one owns the rights to their stuff. I certainly could be wrong, but if someone owned it, surely their music would have been reissued at least once in the past 30 years. But the most you can find in terms of official releases is original pressings from their initial releases. Doing a few online searches you can find a few copies floating about, but they can get a bit pricey. Of course some songs are available to listen to on YouTube, and I highly recommend the tracks ‘Flying Saucer Safari’ and ‘Green Eyes’ for a taste, but otherwise if anyone is interested, I did fine one link after about two hours of searching around one afternoon that has a zip file containing all their stuff, and you may have the same luck here.

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