08.22.2018
Trust Fund
Bringing the backline

Apparently this is going to be Trust Fund's last album, which is a bummer because I feel like Trust Fund still has unexplored greatness in them. That's unfair actually; their Seems Unfair album is truly great. Really everything they've done is some shade of great, even if this one is a little paler than the others. But I still don't want them to stop. We'll see.

06.23.2016
Trust Fund
We have always lived in The Harolds

One day last summer, I went from having never heard of Trust Fund, to putting their Seems Unfair album near the top of my Best Of The Year list, and putting the band near the top of my Super Excited To Hear What They Do Next list. Awesome album, really smart power pop, fun and charming, well done, funny videos. They're good. Well What They Do Next didn't take long, because they just released this new, uh, album? Is it an album? What is an album anymore? It was only $1.49 on Bandcamp, and I can't help but feel that it's basically a series of demo recordings that would've been better off kept behind the scenes in preparation for their next real album, half song ideas, and half instrumental arrangement experiments (some woodwinds here, some mellotron there, some connective drones yonder). But I can't complain, because $1.49. The songs are nice though, and they're seriously on a roll in terms of knocking out sweet smart melodies—and I'm currently listening it to about the 5th time since last night. Still, just because it's so easy here in 2016 to release an "album," doesn't mean that you always should.

11.10.2015
Trust Fund
Seems Unfair

My personal Superchunk phase is well into its second year now, with no sign of stopping. I guess it's more of a 'power pop' phase, but really it's specifically about the kind of power pop that Superchunk and their ilk play—more Dinosaur Jr. than Cheap Trick, more Superdrag than Big Star. It's probably what's going to make Screaming Females' album my favorite of the year when the times comes in a couple months. And here's this new English band Trust Fund, who I never heard of until today, and who I probably would've ignored, had Pitchfork not thrown a Superchunk reference right in the teaser text. And even though they only gave it a 6.8, I think they're wrong, and it's at least a 7.2! Good hooks, good progressions, interesting singer that would fit in a late 90s Elephant 6 band, scuzzy Dino Jr. production that's maybe just a bit muddy for me, but whatever. They're good, they're positive, they've got personality, they're clearly having fun while not forgetting to write songs. This isn't necessarily the greatest album ever, but I'll bet they put out their own mini-classic sometime in the next year. This is fine for now. Super!


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09.04.2018 - by Steve
Potter'sDinkytown Minneapolis
Sausage roll

I think I've had a Potter's pasty from their food truck before, but I honestly can't say I remember much about it. But this weekend I finally got to their brick and mortar store (which is only a brick and mortar store in that they sell some food out of a window connected to their commissary kitchen in the basement of a building connected to the back side of a convenience store), and was duly impressed by their sausage roll. See, I'm a bit of an expert on sausage rolls; I went to England one time. So. Anyhow, these aren't quite as good as the rolls at Greggs (um if you've ever been to England like me you'll know what I mean, mate), and they don't serve them with HP Sauce (God save the Queen), but rather with a sort of tangy apple reduction, which I don't think quite worked with what was more of an Italian-style sausage than the traditional English breakfast sausage that you'd expect from a roll. But despite that, I fully enjoyed the roll, and have to say there's something very refreshing about a place in Minneapolis that just sells out of a basement window. It's the sort of secret-handshake "in the know" place that doesn't usually exist around here.

09.04.2018 - by Steve
MeyvnUptown Minneapolis
Bagel

Meyvn is the latest attempt to bring a 'Montreal style' deli to Minneapolis, and considering the fact that my bagel was served in a cardboard box with a salad and was somehow wet, and the fact that the interior is designed to look like a reclaimed barnwood retro futurelounge rather than, say, a Montreal deli, it will surely be the next Montreal style deli to close in Minneapolis.

08.22.2018 - by Steve
CampingGrand Marais
Knockoff Nando's chicken

We'd been thinking a lot about Nando's lately, the British peri peri chicken chain, which has become nearly as ubiquitously 'basic' in England as Chipotle is here. We ate it earlier this year during our trip out there, and it was legitimately delicious. Which wasn't totally a surprise, because even though it's almost become a punchline over there, it's still (like Chipotle) beloved by nearly everybody. So when it came time to find some good recipes for camping up on the North Shore, I got the idea to find a recipe for a Nando's grilled chicken facsimile. The one I found wasn't the traditional flavor (peri peri peppers being a little hard to come by in the upper midwest), but was Nando's bbq flavor. Basically a marinade with bbq sauce (cheating, I know), worscestershire, a bunch of garlic, hot sauce, etc. So the morning we left, I tossed some chicken in the marinade, let it linger in the cooler all day, then at night I tossed it right on the campfire grill. It was a little nerve-wracking for a while, since a wood campfire isn't terribly consistent. But after giving it a good blackening on the outside, I wrapped it in foil for another 10 minutes and prayed that it was cooking through. Upon opening up the foil, I was greeted with the most perfect looking chicken I've ever made. And then I tore off a piece, and my god it tasted as good as it looked. I can't say whether it actually tasted like Nando's or not, but it was some of the best anything I've ever grilled, camping or not. Ledge.