Saturday, September 14, 2013

Guten Somethingorother friends...nothing much to start this rather diseased post off with, so I will cut the caga and let the following relay my general malaise to you and like pronto!

Gunslingers-MASSACRE-ROCK DEVIANT INQUISITORS (tracks 1 and 2); NO MORE INVENTION (tracks 3-11) CD-R burn (originally on Riot Season)

An outta nowhere surprise from the mystery package received last week (still working on deciphering the anonymous donor's might be from a Tom Somethingorother, I'm not sure) that really rocks the socks off. A group of French origin, these Gunslingers make a rather unholy racket with their gear sounding like a lost seventies underground aggro filtered through eighties jadedness. Reminds me of the infamous En Why fringe no wave group Jack Ruby with Dilton Doiley on lead vocals. A left-field effort that will probably only appeal to a fraction of you, but oh what a fraction of you'll be tearing the sheets to confetti once you hear this!
Lee Konitz-IN HARVARD SQUARE CD-R burn (originally on Storyville then Black Lion)

Bill Shute's the big Konitz fan, at first taping then burning some of his sides he thought I should be more familiar with ignorant stroon that I am. Given that my own interests in jazz begin with the roots of avant garde and sorta gush forth from there some of these sides really don't hit me between the ears like Bill hoped they would, and frankly this 'un doesn't do a dad-blamed thing for me especially after a hard day at the salt mines when all I wanna do is have my nerves hitched up to a car battery. I've heard better Konitz (via Shute natch!) before, but frankly this one lacks the hard drive, high energy, vision and raw power that I look for in jazz. Bill, howzbout some Roscoe Mitchell next time around???

Of course if you don't believe me and wanna call me a turd to my face (or via the comment box) why don't you listen to the thing yerself? Here's the entire album available via the miracle of youtube:

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band-NEXT... cassette (Vertigo England)

I keep fergetting...was it this 'un or TOMORROW BELONGS TO ME that broke SAHB in the United States? Or was it just Cleveland? Yeah, Clevelanders in general had the worst taste in rock music as the success of some rather simpy bar band flacks like Michael Stanley and Breathless would attest to, but when it came to Alex Harvey at least they were right this time! So right that I'm surprised Harvey booster Charles Shaar Murray never moved there just to get in on some of the aura himself.

I once stated (OK, I've stated it more than once!) that NEXT... was not one of my favorite SAHB albums, but as usual I am one to give things like mid-seventies English (OK, Scottish) albums another go 'round as long as they weren't released on Manticore Records. 'n hey, I gotta say that this 'un sounds a whole lot better'n I remembered. Of course it ain't no FRAMED (the one which started the whole ball rolling with import copies even popping up in department store record bins) but it's hotcha enough for me with more than a few solid rockers like "Swampsnake" and "Giddy Up a Ding Dong" perking my oft-jaded ears up a bit. Yeah some of this did drag on for me...I mean, Jacques Brel never did fire my imagination like he did Bowie's...but overall it has a whole lot more spark and verve'n the progressive shuck these guys often got lumped in with.

Still a good encapsulation of the just pre-underground overlap into everyday teenbo concerns music that has about as much mid-seventies cred as Roxy Music, Sparks (look out for a seventies overview on the Maels more later than sooner) and more of those import bin faves that got pushed to the back of the collection once Pere Ubu albums started coming out. Snat theatre rock with a snide attitude that also got swept under the rug within a few years, and oddly enough I heard more'n a little Orchestra Luna during the showstopping "Last of the Teenage Idols" finale which really goes to show you how Broadway strut this can get!
The Crummy Fags-RILLY LOZ DINDA MIRE O' NARZIZISM cassette (Whitewall Tapes)

After years of searching through stacks of boxes in the darkest reaches of my closet I find this, a bonafeed tape of the infamous eighties Akron band the Crummy Fags that I've been on the lookout for fanabla knows how long. I mentioned these guys many a times both in the mag and on this blog, and given their love for the seventies underbelly of Cleveland rock (Electric Eels, Ex-Blank-Ex...) you know why I've been doing the rah-rah-ing about 'em for oh so long!

I mean, whatta group! Yeah alla 'em other punks could take their cues from the S-x Pistols and Clash all they wanted, but if you took 'em from the likes of Dave E then you REALLY knew where your punkisms lied! And they sure ooze punkitude on this tape, mostly culled from 1985 performances at JB's in Kent as well as in the rehearsal closet or wherever these guys conjugated. Of course you get the Fags' world famous version of the Eels' "Agitated" as well as a radically diff. "No Nonsense" too, but there's also a fantastic take on Jonny Richmond's "I'm Gonna Walk" as well as a pile of original material that just might become as famous as the aforementioned gunch...if only this woulda made it out to the public the way it shoulda back in 198X.

Some of the music does have a bit of an eighties "date" to it (meaning it sounds like too much if perhaps too late), but it all goes down rather pleasant in your own ranch house sorta way.  In many ways this is about as good as some of Dave E's eighties-era groups so you know you're gonna be in for a warpoid treat if you're ever able to wrangle a copy of this! Come on, why don't some of you under-the-rock labels who are so keep on digging up these rarities of the past take a chance on this and recoup some of the losses you incurred on alla those phony punk cash in platters you somehow thought were the real true blue item!

One thing, you may be disappointed to discover that "Open Up and Bleed" ain't the Stooges song, though "1969" is, even though it has about the same rush through and get it over with feeling as all of those other Stooges covers that cluttered up the eighties amerunderindie world, and boy were we sick to death about it!
THE ROY WOOD STORY cassette (Harvest England)

I remember seeing this import bin fave all over the place back when it originally came out '77 way, though I wonder how many copies this obv. career cash in sold over here in the U.S. of Wha? After all, Roy Wood may have been one of those fanzine faves on the basis of his Move-ments alone, but Wizzard were never more'n a cut-out staple in Yankeeland or Dixie for that matter and frankly, if you could've sat through their Eddy and the Falcons-era appearance on MIDNIGHT SPECIAL w/o getting up for a late-night snack then you musta had the iron will of a G. Gordon Liddy roasting his hand on an open flame before downing it with mustard and onions!

I guess the rock world really coulda used an item like this at the time. Better yet, I'm sure that EMI coulda used the additional pence or two in their coffers capitalizing on an English rock legend who wasn't on their roster anymore. But it's something that I'm sure woulda gotten the typical NEW HAVEN ROCK PRESS and ROCK MARKETPLACE kinda guys all excited...a selection of Wood's various musical highlights from the beginning in the mid-sixties all the way up to the end of his contract when he probably got a much better deal elsewhere. But sometimes I wonder, who exactly was this double LP/play cassette aimed at anyway, Jeff Lynne?

Side/LP #1's the boss one though, showing off Wood during his early days in fact starting off with "Make Them Understand," Wood's first ever songwriting credit done up when he was with Mike Sheridan and the Nightriders. From there it's on through the Move at their best with all of the big faves that sure sound good in this company, especially when the obv. Beatles puff eventually mutates into a more early-seventies tough pop pounce that was due to make a comeback around this time.

Oddly enough side/LP #2 only has one Electric Light Orchestra track which is OK if you have the myriad assortment of budget LPs that came out in the seventies,  but even if you do they would've still fit snugly enough here. Naturally there's a whole slew of Wizzard and solo tracks that (like I said) might have met with success over there but remained bargain bin finds this way. Gotta admit that I actually enjoy Wizzard even if that fake Phil Spector sound is utilized in one of the chintziest ways since the mid-sixties, and even when the mass of violins and saxophones start to get to you you'll be reminding yourself this is a whole lot better'n "Lucky Man" getting spun and re-spun on the local "classic rock" station.

The solo material swings surprisingly as well, with tracks like "When Gran'ma Plays The Banjo" having almost as much downhome knee-slap as when George Clinton used to do those rural hoots on the early Parliament and Funkadelic albums. And I must say that I was even "touched" by Wood's solo single debut "Dear Elaine" which I thought had all of the panache and depth that the Orchestra had right before Wood picked up and took it all with him!

Not anything that would light a fire under the average (if there is one) BLOG TO COMM reader's honeycombed butt, though it sure is a better presentation of a rather major English pop figure's career (to date, and I mean like 1973!) than what could have transpired. Might be worth the snatch up at one of those flea markets where some old hag's selling off the record collection of her long od'd son, and if so don't try gypping her too much. Just try getting the thing for like a quarter, 'r maybe fifteen cents even. I'm sure she'll thank you anyway.
BONE CLUB cassette

Didn't want this post to particularly become another "cassette caga" but it looks as if it's turning out that way. But hey, despite the occasional drop out I gotta say that I do love these things to the dickens, not only because they remind me of some of the better highlights of the seventies but because nowadays the cassette machines that are being made are so hotcha you don't have to worry about any tapes jamming and getting crinkly like you did back when you were a kid staring at the spools wind keeping an eye out for any irregular turns and warbles!

Got this 'un as a promo way back when I was writing for a certain magazine whose title I prefer not to mention, and for a freebie being sent my way all I gotta say is...howcum I didn't get more goodies like this? Bone Club was a name I was kinda familiar with at the time perhaps because of an appearance at CBGB on a bill with not only the Lubricated Goat but Buzzy Linhart (!), but for the life of me I can't remember if I ever reviewed this sucker in the first place. And since I've BURNT all of the issues of that mag I used to write for it ain't like I can go back 'n check that easily, so's giving this 'un a play is like totally all-new, virgin territory for me even if I know the proverbial cherry was busted long ago!.

Nice hard sound on these three tracks that have some connection to the "Minneapolis" sound but enough originality to set 'em apart from the usual needle abusers. Not quite hardcore yet not punk in the commercial sense...kinda like p-rock in an early-seventies CREEM vein with some heavy metal/hard rock if you will ideas tossed in to confuse everyone even more. But oh what a confusion this is, and at least Bone Club pulled it off sans acquiescing to the baser moments of a variety of musical forms that seemed to have milked their worth for all they had by the time these tracks were recorded (1989).

Bone Club actually got some legit booty out before heading who-knows-where, and maybe it's better if not as good as the three demos that pop up here. Maybe it's the same dang material but who knows. Find out for yourself if you're so interested, but as for me I think this tape'll keep me going for a few weeks until I once again lose interest.

However I wouldn't mind buying their sole EP if only for the whacked-out cover featuring a crazy re-do of the "Three Ball Charlie" guy who appeared on the STICKY FINGERS album cover (something which really "affects" me because when they album came out I tried replicating Charlie's feat and am still surprised I didn't swallow the one ball I managed to get in and choke to death!).
Various Artists-LONG BLACK LEOTARDS, YOU ALL! CD-r burn (courtesy of Bill Shute)

Last but most certainly least as Bullwinkle once said comes this Bill Shute entry, a collection of more "thrift shop" rarities that I never saw in any thrift shops I've inhabited! Unfortunately this 'un didn't quite zoom me the way some of Bill's other compilations have...sure the pounding instrumental by the Raiders and Royal Teens' "Leotards" always help fill the bill when I'm looking for late-fifties jollies, but I just couldn't swing with some of that gospel and blues material Bill packed into this 'un like the fudge gets pounded San Francisco way. I gotta remark that Bill's comment regarding the Consolers' 1959 "It May Be The Last Time" which he says sounds suspiciously close to the Rolling Stones' '65 hit pf a similar title was right onna moolah, but for the most part I must admit I couldn't wait until the thing was over so's I could slip some Velvet-drone on to resensify my frizzed out nerves. Yeah, and a boo-hoo to you too!
"That's it, Fort Pitt" as some of us used to say.


Anonymous said...

Weird, I just played the Gunslingers side on my radio show at the college where the singer from Bone Club went for a while. I knew him a bit while he was here. I think he was in a band before that called SGM (Shotgun Mama). Bone Club got signed to Imago and released something on that label, if I am not mistaken. Best, Phil

J. Phlegm said...

I can't take responsibility for the content of that cassette. I don't know who decided on the content.

My delightful bandmates cut me out of that, as always. (Nor do I know who decided on that atrocious cover.)

I would have called it something entirely different - perhaps: 'With Friends Like These, Who Needs Enemas?'