Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tommy Moonlight and Chick Newman-"That Cigarette in Bed"/"Can't Get You Out Of My Head" 45-rpm single (Sayhey, available through the Hackamore Brick myspace page!)

Admit it, who'd'a thunk that Hackamore Brick woulda gotten back together in the here and now performing their seventies-fied folky rock this late in the post-rock game anyway? And while I'm at it, aren't you (the discriminatory [pun intended] BLOG TO COMM reader) quite surprised that the Brick (or at least co-leaders Tommy Moonlight and Chick Newman) had been playing together under various guises throughout the seventies and eighties and we didn't even know about it? Of course back in the day all we hadda go by were slight "hints" being tossed about here and there (like the '78 Max's Kansas City listing which mentioned that the group Moonlight was indeed "ex-Hackamore Brick"), but whatever the situation might be I'll bet you're as flabbergasted over alla this new HB information being crammed into your bean as I surely am! Sure can't wait for the UGLY THINGS lowdown that'll probably hit the 'stands 'round next spring.

Even crazier is the fact that Brick co-leaders Moonlight and Newman (under their own nom de's) recorded and released this very single back in '84, a time when I'm sure we all coulda used a lot more Hackamore Brick and a lot less Bryan Adams! This disc was made for the Austin Texas-based Sayhey label and the knowledge of its existence is truly a surprise especially for this hodad who was wondering whatever become of 'em ever since latching onto ONE KISS LEADS TO ANOTHER back in '88. I'll bet that had one of those esoteric mail order businesses like Metro Music or Disques du Monde gotten hold of this they would have slapped an "ex-Hackamore Brick" description and sold out pronto, and at a great profit too which would figure considering the great respect that band has held for more than a few bargain bin hunters of the seventies and beyond. Too bad it took so long for the thing to reach us real fans, but better late'n never because for at least the more curious amongst us this surely is a platter that will help answer the musical question "what would Hackamore Brick had sounded like had they been together in the eighties?"

Moonlight takes front and center on the a-side, a dirty ditty called "That Cigarette in Bed" which would probably shock the new era bluenoses for the ciggie ref rather than the sordid tale of the gal Moonlight picked up at the laundromat and promptly bedded! Of course Mr. Moonlight is more turned on by the way the heroine lights up after the dirty deed (hope the sheets don't ignite!), and his story is set to a pretty sprightly pop-rocker that reminds me of a lotta local-release seventies pop records a la Startoon or the Marbles, albeit with eighties-styled synthesizers firmly in place throughout. The synths give this 'un the feeling of a lot of the better early-eighties smart pop groups like Velveteen, and even with those giddier electronic moments so akin to eighties rock fully in force I found myself actually liking this unlike I woulda even a good fifteen years back.

Flipster's Newman's turn, and on "Can't Get You Out of My Mind" the guy produces what sounds more like an attempt at a mid-eighties hit that you know was going to be buried under the weight of way too much of the bad sounds that typified the era. Not as good as the plug side, but nice enough in the way that some of those electronic rock numbers on the eighties CBGB RECORDED OFF THE BOARD discs were despite their own misguided attempts at commercialization. Good enough "under the covers" sorta mid-eighties self-produced musings true, albeit a bit more toned down than the a-side with the slightly more accessible melody coupled with the snat harmony vocals and of course electronic gadgetry spelling even more big ideas gone awry. But then again, I always believed that Moonlight was the rocker of the group and Newman the more "introspective" one, which would figure given how all the ballads on ONE KISS LEADS TO ANOTHER were Newman's anyway.

I'll bet you're wondering just how you could get the chance to get yourselves a copy of this elusive wonder! Well, all you really have to do is go to the Hackamore Brick myspace page (see column at left) and ask them for a copy!!! While supplies last they'll send you one FREE no questions asked which is at least for penny-pinchers like me a dream come true! Howzat for a bargain in these chintzy days anyway? Do I hafta knock you over the head??? C'mon, what other opportunity are you gonna have to get yourselves a totally free record that ain't some cheapo publicity come-on ploy anyway? (And if you wanna hear the b-side first before you decide to take the "plunge", it's readily available on the Brick page!)


Anonymous said...

The new era blue noses, even if they heard of Hackamore Brick, wouldn't give a shit about that song. They don't seem to care about Oasis, the Supersuckers, or Toby Keith doing songs glorifying smoking, not to mention all the rappers out there, so I doubt they'd care about a band which makes the Supersuckers look like mega-platinum artists by comparison. Hackamore Brick's too much under their radar.

Anonymous said...

Utterly amazing. And to think, when I emailed you a couple of years ago, as the only person I knew who knew anything about them, you didn't have a clue of where they were, what they had been doing, or really anything about their history. I just the single in the mail the other day, along with a handwritten note from "Tommy", saying they were working on several new tracks in NYC this month.