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Friday, June 22, 2012

Blast from the (Recent) Past: Sexton Blake Plays the Hits

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Fri, Jun 22, 2012 at 11:22 AM

starfkrsextnblk.jpg
At one point, it was Starfucker that was the side project. That was back in the heady days of 2007—when Flight of the Conchords were still together (and Oscar-less), George W. Bush was still King of America (this was before democracy), and Carly Rae Jepsen was but a young savage living in the Northern wilds (Canada had not yet been discovered).

Josh Hodges' main jam at the time was Sexton Blake, a band of revolving lineup and a stylistically wide range, from hushed narco-pop to burnt-edges rock. Starfucker was the basement-party side project, but times have changed, and lo and behold, here's the email subject from the press release: "STRFKR Side Project, Sexton Blake, Plays the Hits Now Available on Vinyl."

Sure, it's not a new record, but it's one worth revisiting; fortunately the covers album is streaming in full on Soundcloud (embed below). [Stream is down, but individual tracks can be heard on Starfucker's Soundcloud profile.]

Here's the story:

In 2007, Josh Hodges (mastermind behind Starfucker), was asked by his friend to quit his job so he could record an album of cover songs. "It was actually my friend's idea," Hodges says. "He wanted to hear what some of these songs would sound like if I performed them. I thought it sounded like a fun idea."

What grew out of that proposition is Sexton Blake Plays The Hits. With covers ranging from Elton John to LL Cool J, ELO to Milli Vanilli, this album is a perfect snapshot in time that shows how Hodges would go on to approach his own songs under the Starfucker moniker. "It's a pretty funny selection of songs, some ridiculous and some legit," he explains, "I had a lot of fun making this record."
Listen to it above, and you can pre-order one of the 1,000 copies of the record on gold-colored 180-gram vinyl over at Polyvinyl. The reissue comes out July 17.

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