Saturday, June 07, 2014

Sheesh, another week, another rather skimpy roundup of what I've been listening to these past seven spins. Maybe you can make some sorta sense out of it all, but right now I have more important things to worry about than what you think of this mess...stuff like what's for supper or whether or not I'm gonna be able to get hold of that ultra-elusive Fellini's Hideous Mutations single I've been wanting for oh so long---really important things if you do care to know. So have fun reading my usual spew, and like Greg Prevost used to say "these are only opinions ha ha ha!" (Once again, hefty thanks to Bill Shute, Thomas Gilmore and Paul Whatzizname for the burnt offerings they've sent my way...I mean, it ain't like you'd want to read about EVERYTHING that I've bought for myself now, would you???)

FUSHITSUSHA MEETS PETER BROTZMANN 3-CD burn set (originally on Utech Records)

The famed (at least among people who pay attention to these sorts of things) Japanese noise group Fushisusha recorded live in Japan '96 with special guest Peter Brotzmann adding his own post-Ayler spin on their already beyond the ken of Pantsios comprehension avant rock. Needless to say the results are extremely engaging even if you (like me) don't really cozy up to that newer Japanese experimental rock that was all the rage in the hipster fanzines a good twenty-five years back.

The band does put out some interesting (at least for me) electronic syntho-drone and guitar scramble, while Brotzmann once again shows us that these six-oh survivors are sure a whole lot more meaningful to the entire hard-scronk game than many of the players who came in their wake. A huge tip of the skull to Mr. Thomas Gilmore for jetting this one my way, and right at the time I was becoming too jaundiced by repeated playing of J Neo Marvin records (a purification ritual gone awry) to care about living any longer!
The Art Attacks-OUTRAGE AND HORROR CD (Overground England)

Savage Pencil's punkoid aggro were a cut above most of the 2nd rung English groups if only because there weren't any glam slips or psychedelic remnants to peg 'em as a bunch of "poseurs" (a "poseur" word if I ever heard one). Like the best of these under-the-rug bands, there was more'n an inkling of primal genius that set the Attacks apart from much of the competition mixed in with their calculated if perfecto duncitude, and although to the more haute members of "the scene" they might have seemed like the usual clinger-ons I can appreciate their zilch-chord rampages a whole lot more'n I can some of the eighties acts that popped up in their wake. Sorta like the Sex Pistols with a sense of humor and a suburban slob upbringing (an interview in NEGATIVE REACTION mentioned Pencil's undying admiration for various Gerry Anderson productions as well as Marvel Comics and R. Crumb making me wonder---why isn't the guy an Amerigan like you woulda thought he'd be given these stellar doofus credentials???). A must-get for those of you still enamored by the underground electricity of it all.

Got this obv. English flea market cheapo crank out if only to remind myself about all of the hubbub revolving around the original three-piece Talking Heads long before they became poster children for nth-dimensional new wave funksters who danced even worse'n Ellen Degenital. Believe it if you will, but this is actually a nice slab of stripped down post-garage Velvets rock (filtered through hefty ROCK SCENE ranch house and moms on speed teen appeal...see Elliot Murphy for more info) with nary a hint of the art school pretension that dogged the band for ages. Sounds honest enough that you probably wish that your older brother's basement band circa 1973 sounded this snappy! Sorta like the missing link between the early-seventies suburban ruminations of Hackamore Brick/Modern Lovers and the late-seventies avant-punk deconstruction of Mars, DNA and the rest, but how'n the hell did anybody know what was going to happen back in them days!
Max Neuhaus-THE NEW YORK SCHOOL CD, ZYKLUS CD (both of 'em are on Plana-N Records)

When it came to solo percussion "realizations" of contemporary avant garde music Max Neuhaus was either a crazed genius or a bigger phony than Harry Crosby and Salvador Dali combined. Really, don't you kinda think that his version of John Cage's "Fontana Mix" (created for magnetic tape but adaptable to other sound sources) was just a bunch of jagoff experimental percussion with electronic feedback that had nothing to do with Cage's original manuscript? I mean, who could make sense from that score anyway---I get the feeling that all Neuhaus did was record some free splat noise and attribute the resultant spew to his own personal "reading" and "application" of Cage's various patterns, and the dorito-munching beret-heads all nodded in humbled approval while Neuhaus was giggling away behind their backs!

Those of you who've had and held Neuhaus' Columbia album from which his version of "Fontana Mix" appeared will certainly like these two recent dig-ups, the first being a selection of recordings of "New York School" (Cage, Morton Feldman, Earle Brown...) compositions done live 'n studio in the mid-to-late sixties while the other features four takes on Karlheinz Stockhausen's "Zyklus" done up around the same time. The first ranges from sheets of mad cymbals to quiet tinkling passages that remind me of Michael Nyman's Obscure album, while the second is yet another recorded version of the "seminal" composition (another take of which I reviewed here) that just might get your suspicions up because hey, maybe all Neuhaus really did was just go 'n record some percussion shards of his own whim and pass it off as the Real McDeal.

To be quite honest about it, I actually do believe that the realizations executed by Neuhaus are honest and bonafeed readings of the original scores and done very close to the composers' undoubtedly aleatory directions, but if you wanna scoff at the entire history of twentieth century avant screech nobody's stopping you, you lowbrow you!
Jerry J. Nixon-GENTLEMAN OF ROCK N' ROLL CD-r burn (originally on Voodoo Rhythm)

Paul McGarry OBVIOUSLY did not read his old issues of BLACK TO COMM or else he woulda realized that I reviewed this very same platter in the very last issue of my not-so-sainted crudzine! That's one against ya Paul, and for your punishment you must listen to every Edward Bear album ever made and don't frown! But really, it was sure nice givin' these sides a listen to again what with their Texas sixties sounds right outta the we miss Buddy Holly playbook coupled with a Doug Sahm styled madness w/o the baseball stats. Paul probably didn't know it and neither did I at the time, but these tracks were recorded inna 21st century and Jerry J. as we thought we knew him didn't even exist! Talk about fakeout recordings that actually sound archival enough to pass as the down-to-home truth! But its authentic sounding enough to get even the staunchest rockabilly fan up and roarin', so more power to whoever this really is!
JACKSON BECK AS PHILO VANCE (two episodes) CD-r burn (courtesy of Bill Shute)

If you're a sucker for a good radio drama of the old time variety you might wanna scour the archives of the internet for an episode or two of PHILO VANCE. The famed detective puts his mind to work solving two cases on this platter Bill sent, the first dealing with the meanest man alive who, after berating his maid, kicking his niece outta the house and blackmailing a business rival, staggers into a police station saying he was murdered before keeling over in front of the puzzled coppers! The second one has not only a suave man-about-town murdered, but the wopadago organ grinder he was with the very next day as well which really stymies Our Hero because everybody liked the ol' guinea! Can you match wits with Vance and figure out who dood it? C'mon, don't be stoop...of course you can't ya 'tardo you!
Various Artists-______________ (courtesy of Bill Shute)

This week's Shute compilation does NOT have a title which certainly does make things confusing around here, but then again did Bill ever say that life was fair? Not a standard Shute disque at that, what with a whole slew of old soundtracks to lost mooms permeating the slab including some tasty rarities entitled ELSTREE CALLING not to mention THE RADIO AND TELEVISION REVIEW, both which start off this collection. Also appearing are soundtracks for some lost musical called WORDS AND MUSIC not to mention the trailer disc for Sophie Tucker's HONKY TONK which I've written about plenty here, along with various old-timey 78 tracks that sorta send me right back to a turdlerhood stuck at some grandparent's house. In some ways a tear-inducer because it reminds me of days and people that'll never come back, but then again the entire production put a big smile on my face which only proves what a crazy mixed-up stroon I have been, am, and shall remain! The next best thing to strolling an antique shop with your ninety-nine-year-old aunt!

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