Sunday, September 21, 2014

So howz be you on this rather rainy Sunday afternoon??? Hope you're all doin' fine, and I'm sure you'll all be digging my reality via this latest post where, as usual, I write up the best of this week's batch of platters to make their way to my turntable and/or laser launching pad and let you groove at my uncanny abilities to relay my opinions to type. And, as you will eventually see, I have done my best to keep a positive and uplifting spin on things even thought at this point in my life I can hardly give a whit whether I come off more upbeat'n the entire run of Johnny Mann's STAND UP AND CHEER with a few LAWRENCE WELK SHOWs tossed in for good measure. And to be honest about it, I really don't care if you're all doin' fine. The way I really feel right now I'd probably sneer at you all if we happened to meet at the local flea market THAT'S how I feel about you and your lowly sorry existence. Bleh!
As far as current events go, I gotta say that the recent Scottish Independence vote that the locals rejected last week really did set me on an even gnarlier path of loathing than I had been on already. Really, I gotta say that the recent 55% "no" victory was one that I certainly had not been hoping for ever since I read about the SNP's Alex Salmond's success in getting the referendum on the ballot, and just knowing that Great Britain remains about as "great" as it was last week really does send me into a grumpoid stupor that nothing short of an exhumation of Stooges rarities can get me outta...really!

Y'see, I am a HUMONGOUS fan and follower of whatcha'd call "succession". I believe that Sicily should secede from Italy, the Basques from Spain and even the Amerigan South from the Amerigan North. About the latter, its like what Lysander Spooner, the great abolitionist libertarian said, that the Southern States didn't have the right to legalized slavery (and what about the Northern ones who kept their slaves yet remained faithful to the union???), but they sure had the right to skeedaddle if they so desired. And really, it would have been just GREAT if more Scots felt that they should be outside the United Kingdom not only so's they could keep things more "local" but hey, why bother sucking up to the British royalty who are nothing but a buncha inbred horse carcasses who are basically living on the dole while the people who have to support them and the rest of the loafers over there are getting taxed outta their gourds! And really, once you get down to it what has being British done for the Scots 'cept buy into the prejudices and bigotries of the few snobs over there who think they're oh-so-superior to the rest of us turds!

Lew Rockwell said it was the parasite vote the toppled any plans for independence in Scotland and I would tend to agree. After all, it seems that no matter where you go anymore the entitlement mentality is in full swing, with more and more folk coming to the conclusion that if somebody's going to work twice as hard to support me why should I have to do it for myself? Maybe Rockwell's wrong on this 'un, but I'm sure even the most jaded reader out there can get the impression that the lazybones in the land o' kilts thought they'd get a better bargain had London kept passing out the freebees 'stead of Edinburgh, perhaps due to the fact that the Scots have a reputation for being stingy penny-pinchers while the English are more'n happy to circulate the wealth taken from people who weren't even that wealthy to begin with!

Whatever the situation regarding why people voted the way they did, all I gotta say is Scotland, ye blew it! Now we're gonna hafta hear all of this sappy sweet talk about just how one big happy fambly the United Kingdom is and how the British never will be slaves (as if any of 'em would dare get their hands dirty in the first place) and the rest of that rot, just like we here inna U.S. of Anxiety always get that  united we stand schpiel at the end of every Civil War documentary that pops up on the tube. To any of you Scottish readers (or actual Scottie Dogs for that matter) who may be tuning into your local media outlets, watch your glycerin levels.

Well, after that heartfelt if inchoate edi-too-real maybe I should switch gears'n blab on about some a li'l more fun 'n jamz oriented. Like one of my favorite fallbacks, none other'n my dream! Now I ain't been havin' many of them whatcha'd call "rock 'n roll" and related dreams recently, but oddly enough I had not one but two last night which is makin' me wonder about the potency of alla that melatonin that I've been pumping into my system. Won't bore you with the one where I'm in early-eighties England and I actually witness members of the female rock group the Raincoats taunt and humiliate a punkette of rather short and bulky stature before prancing away from the scene, but the other one I had was...well one for the dream archives if you ask me, and why not???

I'm back in high school, a freshman to be exact, and while in the school gymnasium who do I see but none other than Roxy Music saxophonist/oboe player Andy Mackay! I believe he's at the school to scout about for an upcoming Roxy concert there (!) and, after noticing him sitting atop the bleachers within rather close proximity of where I was, on the uppermost row of seats (this must have been during some school assembly although nobody was talking to us a tall!) I ask him if there were any new Velvet Underground-influenced acts over there in Ol' Blighty that I should know about! Immediately Mackay starts to tell me about this new group that I believe was called "Slipstream" (which not surprisingly was the name of a real-life cover band our high school club booked for a Friday night dance around the same time this dream was taking place!) as well as another called "Woodchopper's Ball" who I don't think had anything to do with either Woody Herman or Ten Years After but from Mackay's description (which of course was lost in the ether of my subconscious) they sure sounded swell! By the way Mackay was talkin' all of the groups you can bet that I was more'n apt to google the names spouted even though the internet as we know it was still a good twennysome years away, but who says that dreams (as well as real life) necessarily make any cognitive, linear sense!

Mackay was waxing eloquent about all of these acts in some of the most esoteric speak one can imagine (almost in Glade Air Freshener terms), but even though what he was blabbing was, like I said, quickly forgotten I recall having clung to his every word wishing that I had a pen and paper to jot them names down. And yeah, there was an pounding to my pulse almost to the point where I thought I was gonna have one of "those" dreams conjuring up the unbridled excitement that I was gonna be in for if I were only to hear these obscure musical endeavors! I also asked him if he knew of any new Stooges-influenced acts that were up and about but I can't remember the one name he popped off at me regarding that query, which naturally would figure.
I know I know---you wanna read less blab about dreams and more about actual records right? Well fine and dandy, but considering your rudeness don't start writin' in to me with YOUR rock-related dreams if you don't wanna hear any more of mine!

The Mothers of Invention-WOLLMAN RINK, CENTRAL PARK, NY, AUGUST 3rd, 1968 CD; Captain Beefheart & his Magic Band-LIVE 1966-67 CDs (Keyhole Records)

I guess that these rinkydink labels like Keyhole are pleased as punch that 1) either the copyrights on these classic have expired or 2) even if they haven't nobody's gonna come after 'em because nobody cares this late in rock moozic history! But whichever way this equation goes, there's gonna be more of these once-rarities heading our way more sooner'n later and for that maybe we should all rejoice more'n the time we got a nice big plump A+ on our Wasserman tests!

Unfortunately a good portion of these releases are gonna be about as interesting to us as a Lester Bangs-inspired lecture on the whys and wherefores of rock music appreciation would be to Anastasia Pantsios, but the ones that do tickle our particular callus-tough hide well---what's keeping you with splurging with your hard-begged shekels anyway????

This pair of platters by those infamous sixties freakout moneyrakers Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart do come at a fitting time when frankly, I wouldn't mind hearing more of the former's earlier mutters and the latter's entire career being presented for my edification or mortification for that matter. And after giving these two a spin all I gotta say is...howcum it took so long to get these recordings out considering just how big I was on both of yez back during the final years of my high school existence!!!

As some of you more astute followers of the form already know, there have been more than a few good Mothers of Invention bootlegs o'er the years including a trio of platters for the aptly named and in no way related to the original "Bizarre" label in the mid-eighties, not forgetting the more recent batch coming out via a company known as Mr. Natural being amongst 'em. I'm sure there are many more out there as well, though given their scarcity and the lack of a load of $$$ on my part I doubt that I'll ever make my way through whatever was, is and shall be out and about from here to infirmary.

Where the WOLLMAN RINK release figures in I don't really know given just how lacking I am with regards to everything that is floating about, but frankly I find it a comparative snoozer. Sound's good but thin, the vocals are buried and the jams are some of the more rote if not fatigued to be heard from the MOI catalog. The playing does tense up about seven or so minutes into "The Orange County Lumber Truck" and Don Preston cranks out a rather nerve-wracking organ solo which is cool, if you want to wait that long for your jollies to hit that is. No doubt in my noggin that this was recorded during a real off night which is strange considering the prestige that Zappa and Co. got from being top billed and raking in a whopping $4000 for just a few hours of acting like a buncha whackoffs!

Buddy Beefheart does better on his disque which is divided between that same r&b-infused 1966 Avalon show that's been bootlegged previously as well as some first-album period radio station seshes that're (surprise!) new to me. The sound's so-so yet plenty enjoyable and the performances historic enough to send those same chills down yer spine that ya got back when you (and I) first gave the original mulch a listen to back during your young 'n impressionable years. So if you wanna pretend you're a good fifteen/eighteen (my early years of intellectual impact) again maybe ya'd better slip this 'un on and relive those bargain bin days even if this one certainly ain't of a bargain bin price!

It is recordings like LIVE 1966-67 that make me wish I was a mid-sixties teenbo with an electric guitar, lotsa money to buy records, good looks and a severe back injury. After all, I'm not gonna have a whole lotta time to play records stationed in Vietnam now, am I???
LSD UNDERGROUND 12 LP (Lysergia, available through Forced Exposure)

Like with them Acid Trips albums that seemed so revealing and mystical and alla the other righteous goo your adolescent mind can conjure up, LSD UNDERGROUND 12 promises a whole lot but really comes off self-satisfying to everyone involved but the listener. Kinda reminds me of everyone from the Thirteenth Floor Elevators to the Blues Magoos and early Pink Floyd, if you took the rock 'n roll outta their music and just let them play the effects. Mostly jag-off, though ya do get the feeling that the musicians involved were having a fun time at least until they came down and started throwing up all over each other.

Well, there was one good thing about this 'un and that is had it ever made its way outta the back page ads of THE LA FREE PRESS and actually did get pressed up back then you can bet that the kids'd be shocking more'n a few parents by bringing this 'un home and scaring the wits outta 'em with the cover alone! Almost scarier'n the David Peel HAVE A MARIJUANA one, and tastier too!
The Thirteenth Floor Elevators-KAZZ BROADCAST-AUSTIN, TX 1966 CD-r burn (courtesy P. D. Fadensonnen)

At least when Roky and his Friends took to imbibing in extraterrestrial stimulation they created a rock 'n roll that seemed to transcend the usual heady appraisals of psychedelic pleasure that were going around back 1966 way. In other words, THEY ROCKED OUT!!! unlike a good portion of their orbiting brethren, and really can one do anything more important or as life-reaffirming than that in this miserable existence of ours?

Dunno if this 26-minute radio broadcast is available legitimately, but you can easily enough find it somewhere online and download the bastid for yourself (if I were you I'd try youtube). As you longtime Roky Erickson fans already know, its a hot slice of mid-sixties garage band rock done up right around the time rock 'n roll as an intellectual concern was beginning to take on airs of college professor snootiness, yet groups like the Elevators, amongst many others, actually came off even better because hey, it was like they were suburban Texas kids out on a lark and hey, how innerlectual can people like that get???.

The performance is as tippy-top as the rest of those Elevator live tracks you have floating around in your collection, the announcer's annoying yet "authentic" enough to "date" this appropriately, and even if this sounded as if it was recorded live in the vast open spaces of Chuck Eddy's colon you'd know enough to getcherself a copy and like right now, eh? And although its stuff like this that woulda made an eighteen-year-old me slobber uncontrollably had this only gotten around back then, I don't find it shameful to dribble on even this late in the game!
Tetsu Akiyama & Che Chen-COLD SOUP CD-r burn (originally on Incunabulum Records)

After hearing this I kinda got the idea that Henry Flynt oughta be suin' 'em for taking his entire whackoid violin stylings to even more absurd heights! Heavy duty catgut grate mixed in with noisy post-Derek Bailey blast makes for one of those free splats that had many a miserable teenage turdball such as myself scouring the New Music Distribution Catalog for the latest in "free expression", only to pass up stuff like this because the money was tight and the spirit wasn't quite willing. Taking their Japanese credo of inscrutableness to even further realms, all I can say is that Tetsu Akiyama and Che Chen are gonna have more'n a few of us occidentals trying to figure this 'un out for years on end!
Cluster-SOWIESOSO CD (Sky/Caroline)

Like the title says, it's "so-so". Not the best these Germans hadda offer, but considering they were doing this in '76 when the original thrust of krautscapading was dying down it sorta figures that its a little more candy coated'n their previous efforts. Still beats listening to the latest underground flash peter out right before your very ears, but if you're looking for the hard-Velvets-freeform-avant jazz-thrust of it all listen to the earlier K/Cluster offerings as well as the choicest in krautrock one can find in the auction list or download of your choosing.
Various Artists-CARAVAN TO NOWHERE CD-r burn (via Bill Shute)

Not quite the usual Bill Shute poppin'-on-all-cylinders kinda disque that helps me make it through yet another boring Sunday afternoon, but it'll do. Starts off big w/Muddy Waters and there are a few numbers by the likes of the Plunkett Family and Chu Reyes that come off like something Barney Fife would have had playing on the radio while making Chili in his boarding house room. Hmmmmm, maybe it ain't as downer as I thought it was.

The Monarchs' "Sauce and Tea" single made for some good early-sixties Jamaican fun and games as well, while Gelu's "Y Yo" coulda been straight outta some foreign film running on tee-vee back inna late-sixties. However Al Horn's country & western didn't quite settle well in this mix while Roberta Shore ain't ever gonna make it to Kolob squeakin' around like she does here! Come to think of it that E-Z listening platter that closes this thing out better skedaddle back to the flea market bin from whence it came which leads me to believe that maybe Bill was thinking about his future colonoscopy when slapping this one together!

In all a mixed bag that can tend to irritate once the schmooze groove gets too grating on yr nerves, but it's not like I'm losing any plasma over it'r anything!.
Well I gotta go...think I'm gonna hit ebay now and see if I can pick up a record or two by Woodchopper's Ball, but until then stay cool until we meet again sometime mid-week!

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