Clear Eyes Fanzine – its name is taken from the motivational rallying cry said by Coach Eric Taylor and chanted by the team before every game – is a part-band, part-fanzine hybrid that celebrates the show and Soupy and Ace’s love for it. Season 1, Episodes 1-6 is the first installment, a six-track EP that features three songs by Dan and three by Ace that are about or inspired by the series and its characters and storylines. While the songs will be downloadable and streamable, for the really obsessed there will also be a physical copy of the zine with photos and lyrics and discussions about the songs that can be ordered with either a sweatshirt or a T-shirt.
Pre-orders are now up and you can stream two songs below.
It definitely tests your mettle. I think the biggest thing is, the things you learn from being in band are, well, problem solving is close to the top of that list. What are you going to do if you’re stranded in Germany? What are you going to do when your battery dies on the van and you’re in the middle of the West Texas desert and you have to get to the show the next day? I think without times like that you don’t learn those lessons and you break down. But we just kind of leaned on each other a little bit and said ok let’s fucking figure it out. We can either quit or figure it out.
Thomas Nassiff, writing on his cool blog:
Katie and I got married in March. We had an awesome wedding and reception in Gowanus, and I’ll always think it’s cool that while living in Brooklyn we were able to host 120 family and friends for our wedding at a place that was just a 20-minute walk away from our apartment.
Congrats Thomas. But I thought this was SorryInterpunk.net.
Another detail that I’ll always remember is that our wedding favors were very dope. We asked three of our most musically inclined friends to record covers of songs we like, then we pressed those three songs onto a 12″ record. We will always treasure those three songs and the generosity of everyone who recorded them or aided in their recording, along with the helpful guys at A To Z Media, who have pressed nearly 50 Bad Timing Records releases in addition to this specific 12″. […]
We wanted to share Dan and Ace’s cover of “Thunder Road” a bit more widely, so that’s really what prompted me to write about all this. You can listen to the cover below via Bad Timing Records’ Bandcamp page. And if you head over to that Bandcamp page, you can grab a download of the cover for $1 (or pay-what-you-want if you’d like to throw in more). All payments from that cover on the BTR Bandcamp will be donated to the Human Rights Campaign, which is the largest LGBTQ civil rights organization in the country.
Thomas also details how you can get one of the physical records as well, if you’d like one, on his blog.
The set, which was released on April 6 through The KSR Group/Atlantic Records, earned 255,000 equivalent album units in the week ending April 12, according to Nielsen Music. That’s the second-biggest week of 2018, trailing only the arrival of Justin Timberlake’s Man of the Woods, which bowed with 293,000 units on the Feb. 17-dated chart.
If you were to describe the course of The Wonder Years’ decade-plus career, you may find the word “growth” as the most fitting. The band’s breakthrough trilogy of albums (2010’s The Upsides, 2011’s Suburbia I’ve Given You All and Now I’m Nothing, and 2013’s The Greatest Generation) were all about growing up. Each release addressed various stages of getting older all while the band continually got better as musicians and songwriters. Which is why 2015’s No Closer To Heaven felt like such an aberration. Instead of taking the leaps that the prior three albums did, No Closer To Heaven sounded like a lateral move, an album unsure of which version of the band it wanted to be. It resulted in some half-baked, rushed ideas and were the pressure of “what’s next” might have gotten to vocalist Dan Campbell and his bandmates. That’s not to say that Heaven doesn’t feature some of the band’s best work ever (“Cigarettes and Saints”, “The Bluest Things on Earth”, and “Stained Glass Ceilings” are peak Wonder Years), but it was frustrating that the band didn’t fully dive in. Yet it’s that past frustration that makes the band’s incredible new album, Sister Cities, feel so rewarding and refreshing.
This list is for little more than my own amusement, but I hope that some TWY fan out there takes a look at this and stumbles upon an Actual B-Side or Bonus Track that they never knew existed, and they turn out to love it. The fun thing, too, about Rare Songs, is that they aren’t just for die-hard fans anymore. Back in The Olde Days, you could only find these tracks if you were super-concerned with tracking down every shred of a band’s catalog; the Internet has made it much easier to find this stuff now, to the point where seeing any of these songs played at a Wonder Years show, regardless of when they were released, will usually result in most of the crowd being able to sing along.