Digital Music — June 13, 2018 at 11:36 am

Stream this goldmine of ’80s/’90s live tapes from Sonic Youth, The Fall, Hüsker Dü, Pixies and more

If you, like us, are a sucker for those hissy, you-are-there live tapes recorded from the back of dingy rock clubs, drop everything you’re doing and behold The McKenzie Tapes, a site that, since January, has been sharing live recordings made in the ’80s and ’90s of bands that performed at the famed Maxwell’s club in Hoboken, N.J., and other venues in the New York City area.

Among the acts featured so far: Sonic Youth, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Wire, Dinosaur Jr, The Feelies, Pixies, The Fall, Hüsker Dü, Butthole Surfers, Jonathan Richman, Fugazi, Minutemen and many, many more. The sound quality varies, naturally, but each tape can be streamed — and even downloaded.

The site is the work of Tom Gallo, a New Jersey music enthusiast who hosts the Look at My Records! podcast, as well as a show on Radio Free Brooklyn on Saturday afternoons. He acquired the tapes from David McKenzie, a former Maxwell’s employee, and the recordings largely span 1985 to 1993 — not only from Maxwell’s, but other New Jersey and New York City venues, too.

Gallo writes on the site: “David generously sent his tapes to me in hopes of getting them archived online. I’m looking forward to sharing all this great music over the course of 2018.”

LINK: Check it all out yourself at




  1. holy shit, this is awesom

  2. David Millians

    Good. Lord. There is some excellent stuff here. And the sound- at least on what I’ve sampled- is better than I was expecting.

  3. It’s just like Spotify but for people with taste.

  4. One correction concerning the Meat Puppets: Up On the Sun is their best LP, and Mirage might be their worst.

  5. Would be even better if the downloads were also made available in FLAC!

  6. This is just rad. Of course, I went immediately and listened to the Mary Chain show….

  7. How cool is this

  8. Simon Travis

    Fantastic stuff thanks for sharing I suppose a lot of gig tapes were thrown out when we were having cds thrown at us

  9. Absolutely loved the REM show. There’s some great stuff here. Pixies up next the Godfathers. Thanks.

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