Saturday, October 05, 2013

Hey, look at what one of my faithful readers sent me! I mean, can you absotively believe it? And I didn't even request that the artist in question draw the thing for me! I really don't know why this faithful follower sent me this caricature of Fred Whazizname, but I get the sneaking suspicion that it was because he sent a similar one to some kiddie tee-vee show when he was six years old and guess what...they didn't put it up for the whole world (or at least the tuned in viewing audience) to see! Well Paul, now your life-long dream to have your picture seen has been fulfilled...hope you're happy after all these years of bitter frustration! Sure better'n that Cal Smith album cover I also got from a fellow fan and follower, that's for sure! And while I'm at it...thanks for the Cee-Dee burns you sent along with the drawing. Might even review some this post if time and sanity permit.

Paul McGarry and his wife (Paul's the one on the left), happy in the knowledge that Paul is finally an officially published artist.
Lessee, what else can I blab about to fill their beaut of a post out even more? Howzbout I type this very paragraph out the United States government has shut down and, although I'm still getting my mail and the cops are still out there catching speeders and all seems biz as usual, a whole load of people have been crybabying about the fact that they can't go to some national monument while poised in front of a whole load of tee-vee cameras as if anyone in their right might would give a shit. All I can say to you World War II vets and geyser lovers out there is"tough turds," to put it mildly!!!! Go to the VFW and drown your sorrows or hang out in your backyard if you wanna see some nature, but the thought of me not having to contribute to your wants and desires (and even needs!) even if it is for a few days does tend to put a smile on my face. I just hope the government stays closed long enough to become irrelevant for good, then maybe us normal people can get back to living our lives without some commentator or politician telling us how much we them as if they were the only thing standing between us and total annihilation!

And now, here's a nice selection of platters I've received as of the past few days, or even weeks for that matter. Some via Bill Shute, others via the aforementioned McGarry, one or two thanks to Tom Gilmore and even one courtesy of Robert Forward! Not forgetting the remnants of a recent Forced Exposure order that I've been nursing 'til my nipples cracked, so while my creative boobies are still lactating here's what's been passing for entertainment at my abode these past few days:

Novak's Kapelle-NAKED LP (Cien Fuego, available through Forced Exposure while supplies last)

Not as much has been written about Austrian underground act Novak's Kappelle as there perhaps should have been, what with the group's downright legendary status as an undigested and wigglin' peanut fragment lodged in the rectum of polite society. Some have compared them to the Who, others the Stooges, but whatever the reference may be it ain't like anyone out there is tootin' the Novak's Kapelle horn the way you thought they would. Maybe the fact they're Austrians has put any downhome serious discussion of the group outside of polite company. Too far outta the loop, and besides you don't see hoards of high energy rock fans bustin' down the barn door to talk about Umela Hmota and everyone knows they're as good as any patented cult group you can think of out there in fandomland only folks ignore 'em because well...I stick up and holler for their cause and who wants to be associated with me even in the slightest!.

But then again, what can you really say about a group that would stick a cover like the one repro'd above onto one of their platters? So tasteless that makes those early-seventies Rare Earth offerings like WILLIE REMEMBERS look classy in comparison! Really, I like the un-draped female form as much as the guy in the raincoat next to you at the moom pitchers, but dontcha think these ladies are whatcha'd call a little too ripe for consumption??? I mean, what is this supposed to be, members of the Jack Benny Fan Club on a "nature camp" outing, or perhaps the last two surviving members Hitler's Honeys getting ready to entertain at an SS convention? I know that people have been using ingenious methods (read: s-x) to try and sell albums for years on end, but ya gotta admit that this is a far cry from those early-sixties jazz albums that your Uncle Ferd used to sneak a peek at during one of his frequent trips to the record shop!

I wish I could say more about the sounds to be found herein for that matter but really, I didn't think that the sounds of NAKED were anything that would pique the attention of the average BLOG TO COMM reader let alone a guy like me whose musical tastes never were as "horse-blindered" as my critics make 'em out to be. If anything the music made on this platter is half-there pop rock with the expected punkian overtones that do approach intelligence and verve, but comes off like one of those platters that will take at least a good ten spins before it finally sinks in.

Nothing wrong with that, but as far as my initial impression goes NAKED shoulda been worked out a bit more with some of the more commercial edges (such as the femme background singers) lopped off and the production dirtied up a bit. Then it mighta sounded like that lost Stooges album I was kinda hopin' it to be, but as it stands I find NAKED about as representative of unfulfilled potential as the rest of them mid/late-seventies good tries in the power pop and punk spheres that coulda done it, but somehow didn't. Ain't givin' up on either the album or Novak for that matter, even if I don't think I'd wanna hear the guy's new wave paen to Farrah Fawcett in a millyun years! As for NAKED, ask me in a few months and maybe I'll tell you a different story...y'see, unlike Ernest T. Bass I do chew my cabbage twice!

Yep this infamous obscurity has once again been reissued for all of you people who splurged on the previous reissue, and this time it looks as if it's the legal deal! And Born Bad did a fantastico job of it as well, with understandable liner notes (written by UGLY THINGS's Lawrence Bigot), rare snaps and a pretty clear sound that really brings out the garage-level recording nuances. Speaking of sound, the group come off really teenage here, almost like Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers on a New York Dolls fixation after listening to Edgard Varese albums. Even after one listen you can tell that these guys ranked up there with Mahogany Brain, Red Noise and Dogon as heirs to the French Velvet Underground tag no doubt about it! A must have especially in these jaded times when all of the real good stuff happened over forty years back!

One caveat...the bonus tracks included really don't live up to the group's fullest potential and maybe shoulda been kept under wraps a little longer. You may not care, but whatever you do don't listen to these numbers first because they might tamper with your own preconceived notions regarding cult-status early-seventies punk rockers who were brainy enough to include home-made cheap electronic buzzes in their primitive yet enthralling originals. Otherwise a powerful, evocative and downright peen-age platter.
Agali Ag Amounine-TAKAMBA CD-r burn (originally on Sahel Sounds, then Bandcamp)

Another one from the Tom Gilmore collection, this time from a guy whose (sub-Saharan) African musical roots had me doing even more research than the time when I was ten and I hadda crank out a term paper on the Civil War. Electrified ngoni player Amounine creates a "hypnotic" (to use the same word 1000 rockcrit types have been utilizing as of late) drone-on music that I will admit is similar to many of these Third World alienated from the rest of mankind musical movements who still act and breathe as if it were BC days. He also does a good enough job of it that you coulda imagined this to be a top bed-hop spin in the college dorms of late-sixties Ameriga the same way John Fahey was with that hot blare he produces! Does what all of those minimalist composers of the eighties sure wished they could've done, with way lower overhead to boot. Pretty reet though that one track with the kids singing scared me---for some strange reason I kinda get the feeling that in a few years each 'n every one of 'em is gonna bomb us!

All realistic fears aside, if you liked those Group Inerane releases that Sublime Frequencies released a few years back you might find this a stripped down addition to your late-evening NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC reading sessions...just don't spend too many hours starin' at them hula gals' boobs like I tend to do though or you'll go blind!
Kraftwerk-LIVE AT EBBETS FIELD IN DENVER, MAY 20, 1975 LP (B 13, Russian Federation)

A little too late in the game but interesting enough. Side one features Ralf, Florian and the rest entertaining a small yet appreciative audience who were probably at Ebbets to see opening act Greenslade (I remember rumors regarding Greenslade's roadies getting into fights with Kraftwerk's throughout the tour...must've been a kultural thing). Sound is kinda wooshy as if the recording used was picked up from a radio station two hours away but still strong enough to entertain, and you'll be surprised to hear that I thought their renditions of popular numbers from not only the AUTOBAHN but RALF UND FLORIAN albums were unique enough to make the originals sound staid in comparison. Whether or not that would warrant you wanting to purchase this platter is strictly up to you.

The side-long "Autobahn" was recorded live in Koln a couple months earlier and sounds close enough to the original to the point where (considering the use of electronics and pre-recorded tapes) they coulda just mimed to the album and nobody would have noticed. Nothing particularly special here but if you were one to bop to the "Autobahn" groove during the spring of 1975 I get the feeling you might want to pick this one up. The rest of us would do better to stick with early Can and Amon Duul offerings which at least had that spark of punk snarl mixed in with the Stockhausen.
Various Artists-ENGLAND DON'T RULL ME!!! CD-r burn (compiled by Bill Shute)

At a period in time when I thought that the six-oh garage band font had been run dry and holed up for good, Bill comes up with his own NUGGETS of rare Amerigan garage band sides that somehow missed all of the previous cullings that ended up on those eighties-era albums that were going for upwards of $25 a pop. There's nothing of what you would call "Earth Shattering" or " Life Reaffirming" here but it's still snat enough, loaded with cheap teenbo groups who probably never got outta the grange hall with their musings but eh, we're all the richer for these sides and don't you forget it!

If you like the BACK FROM THE GRAVE series of cheap early punk drool you might go for these, though be warned they just ain't as gnarly. The songs here come closer to the suburban slobs who frequented the SHUTDOWN 66 batch of garage band groovers---the kids from Nowheresville who were so out of even the "out-of-the-loop" crowd at high school that getting an electric guitar outta the 1965 Sears catalog as a Christmas present was the stepping stone to fame, fortune and maybe even a running gig at Arnie's Bowl-A-Rama!

Loadsa goodies here with the likes of the Cadds, Statics, Jacemen and Romans helping to rock away your everyday pains. Personal faves include the Minute Men standing up for Amerigan pride 'n somethingorother as they warn us to "Please Keep the Beatles in England," while the Conchords produce a double-sided whammy with their tasteful covers of "Telstar" and "Little Black Egg"! And how could I forget the sounds of ranch house USA going socially conscious with the Young Men singing about "A Young Man's Problem" which I believe refers to the Vietnam War and the draft if I do say so myself. Maybe they put this on the "b" side because the flip was a cover of Rosie and the Originals' 1960 weeper "Angel Baby" and like, that was considered ancient history by the time the wild and tres-hippified late-sixties rolled around!

Great job Bill. I know this doesn't make you the new Greg Shaw, but then again who has the wherewithal these days to be the new Bill Shute (I know, we still have the old one and he's working out just fine!).
The Bizarros-COMPLETE COLLECTION 1976-1980 CD-r burn (originally on Windian Records)

Yet another from the Tom Gilmore collection, and what a collection this 'un has turned out to be. I've been a fan (albeit a tad belated-like, money concerns y'know) of the Bizarros ever since I heard their blistering track entitled "Nova" on the Stiff Records Akron sampler. Almost bought "It Hurts Janey" from the same record shop Miriam Linna used to scarf used platters from shortly after (didn't have enough money so it got jettisoned along with the latest NEW YORK ROCKER), and definitely did buy their Mercury album as soon as a copy hit the local National Record Mart racks about a year or so later if I do recall. Yes guys, I'm the one that bought your album when it was fresh in the shops, and I didn't even wait for it to go cutout like I was usually wont to do during those depression-era wage days. Just thought ya'd like to know.

This comp has been out for a couple years already, but once again lack of finances (oooh that real life!) and a memory like a sieve kept me from getting a copy into my obviously sweaty palms...until now, that is. I guess Gilmore didn't see any reviews of this with my name attached to it so he figured I was in need of a copy, and you know he was right. And hey, if anybody deserves to review this its just gotta be a guy who first discovered the Bizarros via the AKRON alhum and didn't have enough money for the "It Hurts Janey" single though managed to plunk down full price for the Mercury album once it hit the local record shop bins.

As far as I can tell it's nearly all here...the early singles, the tracks from the split LP with the Rubber City Rebels,  and a good portion of the Mercury album. Since I'm not a Bizarros scholar (and didn't get any booklet notes or whatever with this burn) I'm kinda in the dark about what's what as far as the LP stuff goes, but I can tell you that the AKRON sampler version of "Nova" ain't here which is too bad (the group considered it a throwaway for an album that they thought was a subpar cash-in on post-Devo British rock press mania) and come to it, neither is the take of the same song the group did while they were still called the Eyes and trekked into a studio December '75 under the influence of their good friend and general tastemaker Peter Laughner.

But what did  pop up here is more than enough to sate the late-seventies underground rock fan in us all, that side which really went whole hog for these neu-punk groups and supported and fostered 'em to the ends of the earth only to get let down horribly once 1980 rolled around and these groups either broke up or mutated into commercial feelygood poopsters that embarrassed us all to heck. And as far as the late-seventies U.S. of Whoa punksters go these guys had it all...not only did they have hefty roots in the mid-sixties NUGGETS brand of AM-radio transistor popping hard rock (as the distorto cover of "Talk Talk" would attest to) but a whole slew of hotcha seventies underground cheapbin faveraves from Beefheart on down to the sainted Velvet Underground themselves (Terry Walker's viola might not be as drone-filled as John Cale's but he served the same purpose in the Bizarros that the guy who played violin in Umela Hmota 3 served in his group!). Even the energy and power of early Pere Ubu back when Laughner was a member can be discerned, and I really am thankful that all of the tracks do hold up even if some seem like they shoulda been worked on a bit before being presented to the public. At least as far as I can tell the Bizarros never went "gnu wave" like so many of their compatriates, ifyaknowaddamean...

I guess there must be thousands of copies of this collection cluttering up the warehouses of amerindieville because I see it for sale a whole lotta places on the web. Anyway, I do declare that this package is one that's just gotta be stuck inside your collection if you consider yourself a fan and follower of late-seventies Amerigan u-ground post-Velvet spasms (and who reading this, even if you're one of my enemies spying on me in order to swipe ideas, isn't?). And while you're at it, howzbout reading the Bizarros website and getting an idea of what the long-reformed band is up to here in the teens at a time when they should all be enjoying the benefits of retirement and watching old tee-vee shows all day like I plan to do. Just click here and maybe you can say howdy while you're at it.
The Miller Sisters-PLEASE MR. DISC JOCKEY CD-r burn (originally on Famous Groove, France)

Classic gal group sounds from an act that I believe consisted of the daughters of the president of the Hull Record Company in New York City. Well, that's one way to get on a label as Neil Norman coulda told ya, and from what is revealed on this platter the sisters cranked out at least thirty wild rockers that really typify the 1958-1963 gal group season with typical gusto. Wish I had more info on this act which holds up pretty good especially in these anti-move and groove times since the lead Miller has a great vox whether doing smooth leads or a growly sound that comes off like a lesbian downing some pork rib bones sideways. And as we've known all along, you don't have to be an aged record collecting hobbyist who hasn't left the basement since the last Richard Nader revival show to appreciate music like this, though sometimes I believe it would help out quite a bit.

Fresh from the post office's this bizzaraty that was recorded by a group that actually made all of their own instruments! If you think that this act is something like those wacky early-sixties instrumental groups whose members actually crafted their guitars and drums in their high school woodshop class you are mistaken, because Sky Needle's wares are what you would call extremely "unconventional" electronics, string things and percussives that have a rather non-traditional clank to 'em. They even make the Junkyard Band on FAT ALBERT sound like Miles. Top that off with a femme vocalist who sing-songs around the resultant spew like that gal on the boffo LEAD SHOES soundtrack and you'll be halfway there. Nothing that really grabs hold of my attention the way similar home-made electronic or outsider recordings might have over the past few decades, but you gotta admit it's one that will separate the true lovers of pure grating sound from the pretenders!
The Kinks-ANOTHER GREAT LOST KINKS ALBUM CD-r bootleg burn (originally on Eye)

Yeesh, yet another unsolicited surprise that I found in my mailbox, this one courtesy Robert Forward who I guess is bucking for an extra-special Christmas present this year! And he certainly deserves one for having the mental hoo-hah to know enough to send a top notcher like this my way, even if I've never been a part of the Kinks kadre the same way Edgar Breau, Jymn Parrett and other people who might not even be of Canadian heritage have been for years on end!

But national origins aside, this is a particularly good selection for the kasual Kinks listener like myself. The early tee-vee performances sound just as vital now as they must have for millions of peenagers tuned in to SHINDIG way back when, and best of all these tracks capture the group at their rawest with 'em even sounding outta tune and hitting a clinker or two! The various BBC sessions and tee-vee appearances come off snat too, and as you hear the group transform from a hard punky act to a matured arbiter of taste before your very ears you'll feel like you're experiencing rock history first-hand! And who knows, you too may shed a tear like I did during the 1972 television performance of "Waterloo Sunset" despite the fact that you probably hated the Kinks during their brass band period as much as some Kinks aficionados I've known have claimed they have for ages!

If you can find it download the thing, or just make sure you have a big buddy out there who'll burn wonders like this to his big hearted content! And Bob, watch your mailbox for something nice around the Yuletide Season, that is unless I forget to send it off like I am wont to do most of the time!
Various Artists-STRUMMIN' MENTAL, PART ONE CD-r burn (originally on Crypt)

This one sure brings back memories, not of the Golden Age of Rock 'n Roll Instrumentals but of picking up hotcha collections of rarities such as the kind found on this platter throughout the eighties! I already have the originals neatly stacked in my record collection elsewhere, but considering the time and trouble it takes to move heaping piles of albums this small spinner does come in handy for lazyass me. Hot non-vocalized spins from the 1958-1965 season that are sure to dredge up plenty of ranch house UHF-TV memories with all of those beyond-obvious swipes of Link Wray, the Wailers and Johnny and the Hurricanes! Not to mention some original moves these kids were able to come up with. A fine testament to the glory days of youth long before it all tumbled into an abyss of double-digit IQ decadence.
Cyril Jordan w/Gordon Waller-FEB 15th 2002 PALO ALTO, CA CD-r burn (courtesy of the same guy who sent me the Fred Flintstone picture above)

Dunno where Paul got this 'un from, but  whoever he got it from really messed up with the track listings! Iffy-quality live recording of ex- and future Flamin' Groovie Cyril Jordan live with his then-group the Fiendish Thingies, here joined by none other than Peter and Gordon's own Gordon Waller adding his own special vocal talents!

Now, I must admit that I always thought that Gordon was a guy who was part of one of the wimpiest acts to come out of the British Invasion (and certainly not as good as their doppelgangers Chad and Jeremy who at least made straight-ahead pop rockers I can enjoy) but Jordon obviously thought otherwise, and I guess that because Jordan likes the guy he's now cool enough in my book too! I get that way sometimes.

Good enough smattering of Groovies originals and covers done their way, and Waller does a snat job singing along with these garage busters to the point where I can't fault him for his previous incarnation as part of one of the wussiest acts to come out of the British Invasion. Well at least he didn't end up producing Linda Ronstadt and hanging around with the coke and cause Laurel Canyon cadre,or at least I hope he didn't. Aw shucks, why can't I just settle back 'n ENJOY this thing w/o thinking up all sortsa excuses to justify me liking something I'm not supposed to like, or should like even though I'm not supposed to, or something. After all it ain't like I have to curry favor with Gerard Cosloy anymore!
I got loads more to tell ya about, but I think I'll save 'em for the next go 'round lest I run out of material! See you later, masturbater!

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