With more energy than three “Paul’s Boutique”-era MCAs, I busted through the doors of Burger Records in Fullerton. Half of a pint of Black Phoenix stout spilled on my right shoe. 65% cognizant of my surroundings from a day of drinking with Cinema Spartan’s music editor, Nathan Kowalski.
We want cassette tapes more than the monster in “Stranger Things” wants blood from boring people.
I sprint – sprint meaning to walk, clumsily, while sweating profusely – to the new tape releases. Where is Colleen Green’s “I Want to Grow Up”? I cant find the album on my first look, so I sound for an APB. I murmur something sad and pathetic as if I was Tim Roth in the back of the car, shot, in “Reservoir Dogs”. All is lost. I’m standing there in shock for so long that I grow a Rasputin-sized beard and use a makeup mirror to get the attention of the poor dude working the counter. “Do you,” I stammer, “have any Colleen Green tapes?” He says no. I back away from the register and emotionally collapse in on myself like a Jenga tower at a newly opened craft brewery. Fuck.
I lose sight of Nathan during this ordeal, and finally find him near a shock of Thee Oh Sees cassette tapes. I say something important (maybe “dope” or “nice”) and march away to the LPs. I expect nothing, really. I thumb through some records – Best Coast’s “Crazy for You” is only 10 dollars! – and keep going. And then, suddenly, my fingertips hit something. My eyes well up with tears. I lift a vinyl copy of Cassie Ramone’s “Christmas in Reno” up in the air and the “Lion King” score swells in my head. I yell something desperately excited and unintelligible to Nathan. Nathan shrugs. I turn to Tiffany Smart who hasn’t been referenced in the story to this point, but who is very important to its narrative nonetheless, and nod at her. She’s confused, too. I cant believe I found this album here, even though it’s clearly a Burger print. Cassie Ramone is cooler than a polar bear’s toe nails. She’s so rad she’s basically like Imperator Furiosa and LeBron James in one person.
While I purchased the most priceless, cool as fuck Christmas record on the planet, Nathan and Tiffany rooted through a bin of sweet Burger Records pins. In the middle of this contained chaos, Nathan found and bought “Highly Evolved”, finally ending the age-old question of who is better: The Vines of The Hives. Even sans Colleen Green, Burger Records is the love of my life (behind Hawaiian bread and Vanessa Bayer).