I'VE HAD IT!
With what you might ask...the current political situation, the lack of morality in this world, the horrid post-rock 'n' roll scene, or perhaps even Jay Lang and his minions? Naw, its the supposedly catchy but mostly sub-moronic titles for these posts is getting me all hot and bothered which is why (unless I think up a pretty good one which I sincerely doubt) I am doing away with these sub-pithy "hotcha" come-ons to get you to read this bile! I mean true, I may love a bad gag as much as Milton Berle but does that mean I have to subject you to any? Really, these things were getting stupider'n the ones they used to have in MAD pushing glossies of Alfred E. Neuman, and yeah, of course the breaking of this particular piece of info ain't enough to call out the tee-vee camera crews out but at least you'll know why these columns ain't sporting any special headings like they have been lo these past six-plus years. As they used to say in the (post-Bangs/exciting) CREEM, now you can go back to living.
And from there (with a heading like today's I'll betcha thought I was going to once again go into one of those two-minute hibernations like I had earlier this year which got a number of followers worried that this blog was deader than Gary in a Coleman Cooler) on with the show!
***DAVID BOWIE DELUXE EDITION 2-CD set (Deram??? Didn't know they were still around, UK)
During the v. early days of this blog I reviewed THE WORLD OF DAVID BOWIE, one of those budget samplers of pre-glam/fame Dave that the English Decca label put out in the wake of Bowiemania (or maybe even before since Bowie actually compiled the thing for his soon-to-be ex-label). Twas an album that like I said in my review used to be found with ease even in the record departments of various American department stores who would never think of stocking anything on the Ohr or Brain labels, and next to ROCK & ROLLING STONES it was perhaps the first import album I ever laid mine eyes upon. After giving that one a halfway-there tepid review you'd probably wonder why I'd even bother to pick up this double-disque set of Bowie's first album with all of the expected bonuses and additions anyway. Boredom is the answer to that 'un!
Actually since I never did hear Bowie's first album in its entirety this is at least an educational experience. Of course sitting through almost sixty tracks of the pre-Carrot Top from his early bopping gnome days ain't exactly the things that rock dreams are made of, but the various moments of Syd whimsey filtered through Beatle-pop and fey-tough do happen to sound marvy when compared to the current state of music affairs (aka r.i.p. rock & roll). And for a guy who still cherishes his copy of LITTLE TOY SOLDIER this does come in handy despite all of those negative feelings you've held towards the English version of Howdy Doody for all these years. But still, nothing here comes close to that 'un for pure late-sixties fop-plunk one bit which might be a disappointment to some of you more feral types out there!
***Smegma-I AM NOT ARTIST 6-LP set + DVD (Vinyl on Demand)
Box sets usually are a turn on for me especially if they have that specific oomph! to 'em, and naturally this one's no exception. And hey, what DON'T you already know about these West Coast noisesters anyway that hasn't been said here and elsewhere o'er the past thirtysome years! All of their major goodies (FLASHCARDS, 1941 GLAMOUR GIRL...) and more like single sides, forgotten favorites etc. pop up here in one solid box, and it's packaged complete with individual elpee sleeves making this a nice work of art in itself! And I only thought Elvis and Chicago were "important" enough to get the box set treatment!!!
Special surprise is the additional DVD featuring some classic old and even older Smegma videos that are just as freakoid as the music they're playing. Someone'll probably upload alla these to youtube sometime soon but if you wanna watch it in the privacy of your boudoir this is a must watching the loosely-knit aggregate switch within the span of a few minutes from free jazz to plain plonk to even some hot Velvets-rock from '79, right before the VU became an excuse for whining pimplecrops to express their heartfelt rejection of all that is evil and gnarly out there via Christgau-approved "indie rock". Kinda reminds you of the days when DIY/underground rock was fresh and exciting eh? Now just when was that? The way I look at it, with all of the crap that's been passed off as rock & roll o'er the past three decades it might as well have been during THE SIGNING OF THE MAGNA CARTA!!!!!
***Loren Mazzacane Connors-HELL'S KITCHEN PARK LP (Enabling Works, Holland)
I gotta admit that I was one of the few who originally poo-poo'd what little I heard from this "outsider" guitarist back in the nineties, but a few interesting pieces fortunately graced my ears enough to make me almost do a 180-degree turnaround. I say "almost" because for the life of me I find it hard to make my way through the Cee-Dee-Are burns that Bob Forwarded me a few months back which were filled with more brittle, hard-listening music that really didn't jibe with my impressions re. Connors as a player with more motion and swerve in him. But this one is different. Originally released in '93, this "concept album" has the right mix of avant and pure emote from the guitarist who can evoke everyone from Fahey and Link Wray (!) to maybe Derek Bailey if the wind's blowing the right way. Here Connor plays evocative and conjuring w/o shocking you into total atonal nerve-grate, not that I have anything against that and in fact I love it, but sometimes I'm more or less in a Sandy Bull mood, y'know? Vocals by Suzanne Langille on two tracks add an even more gut-wrenching "ethereal" feeling to the already strangely rustic mood of this platter dealing with/dedicated to the dirt-poor Irish of 19th century En Why See who still get the collective guilt trip packed onto 'em because of the 1863 draft riot. Something tells me I better pack my next Forced Exposure order with more goodies from this guy, hunh?
***Angel Face-WOLF CITY BLUES 3-CD set (Apachefilm, France)
From the France of Skydog Records, ROCK NEWS and the Mont de Marson Punk Festivals comes Angel Face, a group who SLAPS IN THE KISSER anybody who thinks that the French played lousy rock & roll. You probably read all about 'em in UGLY THINGS a few issues back plus considered dishing out that $20+ for a demo single that was repeatedly offered on ebay as well, and if so now's the time to save a li'l $$$ because all this and more has been issued on a three-Cee-Dee set which should fill in all of those questions you had about the band ever since reading Laurence Bigot's says-it-all piece not so long ago.
Rather than crib by referring to that particular article lemme tell you what I think about this straight from the mind 'stead of relying on previously-disseminated info regurgitated from old reviews and mere hearsay. Disque #1's presumably the group in their early stages and it sounds it, playing primal and probably not that different than the like-minded acts across the boards who were also puking forth various Stooges/Velvets ideas and relaying 'em onto a portable cassette player that probably jams every few inches. The use of electronics on a few tracks give these tracks a more "European" bent, almost as if these guys were mixing a bit of krautrock in with their garageisms even though the results do sound just a tad like those early Metal Urbain sides. Smart move, giving Angel Face a more "varied" approach to their style which even predates (on a certain level) the early-eighties mixing of punkisms and krautscapades along the lines of DAF and a few other groups I just happened to miss out on.
The second one's pretty snat too...I think this is from the eighties because they got this chick singer and even though she sounds like one of those "I'm My Own Bitch" types who used to proliferate the Pantsiosphere of early-eighties rockdom the band still rocks. ("Rocks" being a term similar to "Kick Out The Jams" and other outbursts that used to rile the likes of Patrick Amory.) Fortunately for all of you misogynists out there some rough-sounding guy turns up for the rest of the platter as Angel Face continue on their hard-edged growl in the face of the passive eighties, and this really does sound the hotcha-est, especially considering all of the pallid imitators that groups like Angel Face had to compete with at the time.
The last disque's a weirdie, sounding mostly as if it came from goof-off rehearsal tapes and maybe some radio broadcasts with some music here, some people speaking in French there and even some weird accordion music tossed in (platter #1 does have this bit of e-z listening on it so who knows wha' th' hey'd going on!). For awhile I didn't know if I was listening to a rock group or outtakes from 'ALLO 'ALLO. Good thing they made this disque #3 or else many of you probably wouldn't have had the stomach to make it to the other two.
If you're a fan of that mid-seventies post-Stooges/pre-Sex Pistols sound Angel Face is just the ticket for ya. And this one is a nice package with a cover sporting loads of pix of the group in and out of action, complete with a booklet that tells you nary a thing but considering this kinda blurt was supposed to be the "International Youth Language" of the seventies does it matter? A rather good triple-threat here which should do more than to prepare you for more proto-punk onslaught comin' our way in the next few months (hint!).
***AND FINALLY... I decided to post this interesting article (was tempted to say "piece" just to get you all excited) that I found while combing the 'net sort of as an answer to you "readers" who always make excuses for and defend some of the most destructive forces in this world of ours complete with a smile on your "I Know The True Meaning Of Life" faces. (I've seen your types for years from grade school on...you never change with your smug self-righteousness and open-armed acceptance...of everything you happen to agree with!) Since I'm really not that good a debater (in fact I was kicked off the debating team because I couldn't persuade Germans to follow orders) I think I'll let this particular article (which in fact is THE LAST WORD w/regards to all of your kind-hearted misconceptions) do more'n enough speaking for me and my oft loathed opines! And talk about shut downs! Have fun wallowing in your misguided enlightenment shame, y'all! (LATER ON NOTICE: I happened to whiz by this particular article yesterday and found out that you now have to pay to read the entire thing! If you wanna wait until it's up 'n free again fine by me but really, I think it's worth the moolah to dish out the dinero to give this one a gander in its entirety, it's sooo good!)