In Austin, or as David Israel says in his song on this very compilation, “here in Yuppieland,” the milieu of banal capitalism run amok is no different, really, than in any other booming American city. If anything, perhaps an ever-present industrialness shares some responsibility for the laid-back “weirdness” that this town is (somewhat facetiously at this point) known for. After all, without stuffy conservatism and fraternity culture, we wouldn’t have gotten the 1980 Big Boys ode to violent class warfare, “Frat Cars.” (With its classic opening line, “Gonna kill some frats, let’s get ‘em!”) Opting out can be a powerful constructive impulse. Perhaps no local artist has illustrated this more consistently than the great populist Richard Linklater, who, after all, made Slacker (1991), a film as conceptually ambitious as its characters aren’t. In this sick sad corporate world, to be a slacker, or a freak, or an intellectual cowboy, is to take a political stance. I won’t sign your pledge, man.
The twenty songs on this compilation reflect an eclectic, vibrant, radical scene that is far from dead, even (or perhaps especially) as the cost of living soars and gentrification does its thing. There are love songs (Summer Salt’s swoony “Little Legs”) and anti-love songs (Sailor Poon’s hilarious, fuckboy-trolling “Leather Daddy”). There’s radical playfulness (Pataphysics’ creepy ode to shoplifting, “Can't Stop Stealing”) and morbid humor (see DUMB’s opening anthem “I Don’t Wanna Die On I-35”). Even the dystopian environmental report “Sand In The Well,” by Pollen Rx, is delivered with pop aplomb. We’re proud of this record. Everything on it is either brand new, unreleased, or rare. It feels like a really good mixtape, and we can’t stop listening to it. Everyone truly brought their best to the table, and we feel like something magical came from it. We hope you enjoy Slack Capital.
--Eric Braden of Big Bill and Nathan Lankford of Austin Town Hall Records
All proceeds of Slack Capital will be donated to Anthropos Arts, a local non-profit organization which provides music lessons and musical instruments to at-risk youth. Get involved at anthroposarts.org