Saturday, November 14, 2015


Can't agree with your more cysta, because here at BLOG TO COMM we deal in hard edged 'n to the core rockism 'n nothin' but! The rock might be high energy, middling or even at times tepid (tho w/strong undercurrents of primal potency) but it definitely is consumption worthy to the max, and while I'm at it there's also a high percentage of rock 'n roll-related jamz we deal with and by that I mean everything from funtime tee-vee to unhealthy deep fried grub, cozmic bookage and various related anti-innerlektual activities you never did read about on Salon!!! But whatever the case, if you don't love BLOG TO COMM then you can get your tripe-like butt outta here and go find yourself a place to rub yourself in the company of similar-minded self-absorbed entities. At this point in my life I really couldn't care less how you spend your free time even if I think that spending it on my blog is definitely a beneficial experience in these downright offensive times. But if you wanna stick around I'm sure you'll find some of the best rock 'n roll related scribblings to be seen since the sad days when the likes of Meltzer and Saunders (and their brethren) were banished from the pages of rock mags only to be replaced by a generation of dolts who couldn't write worth a fanabla, but boy could they cut 'n paste press releases!
In other news---gawrsh, I can sure tell that I've been having one of them stuck-in-neutral weeks (which kinda fits in with my stuck-in-neutral life) when I have yet another one of my recurring GILLIGAN'S ISLAND dreams! You reg'lar readers'll know what I'm gabbin' about but for those who don't, they're the ones where I see/osmose (as if I am right there experiencing the action firsthand) one of those mid-eighties episodes from the revival series that were made and syndicated to local stations which is why, in my dreaming mind, I missed seeing them back then as no local stations picked up on it! However in this one Richard Deacon did not take Jim Backus's place nor did the Professor sport one of those then-hip ponytails although the rest of his hair was strictly forties, but the actor who portrays him, Russell Johnson, certainly looked about as bad as James Arness did in those GUNSMOKE tee-vee movies with dyed hair (or a wig) as well as a poor makeup job that tried to hide all of them wrinkles! Sheesh, I wonder what it is in my subconscious excuse for a mind that causes me to have such a repeating theme in my dreams as a nonexistent mid-eighties GILLIGAN'S ISLAND revival series's almost as bad as those recurring dreams I used to have where I discover that there was an independent station nearby airing all of those great fifties/sixties programs I still flip over, but nobody told me about it so I missed out on years of great suburban slob stocking feet all day television viewing (and you can just imagine the angst-filled feeling that permeated my soul even after I woke up!).
In even more other news---my own personal tastes in rockism have lurched back a good forty years or so and straight into the import bins which, come to think of it, isn't anything out of the ordinary. Perennial faves this week include such all-time wowzers as Amon Duul II's YETI (which wasn't as nearly the bin stuffer that PHALLUS DEI and TANZ DER LEMMINGS were unless you happened to live in a big sorta city) as well as the Expression super-duper hardcover book edition of Quiet Sun's MAINSTREAM, an album which you couldn't escape from had you been as serious a record shop prowler as I was. As for the former well...the carnage might not be as overdrive as Can let alone various other early-seventies sound molestations as FUNHOUSE let alone that 1975 best album of the year METAL MACHINE MUSIC, but it does retain a certain punk-y charm even when the (admittedly) more carnal aspects of late-sixties West Coast rock come roaring through. MAINSTREAM does share some of the overdrive if intellectual aspects of its import brethren, though the inspiration is purely English avant garde rather than a Teutonic take on then under-the-cover Amerigan concerns. If you go for the mid-seventies fusion with dignity (but still listenable enough) drive of the Soft Machine and, like me, wonder about the London experimental/classical cadre's fascination with various rock 'n roll fixtures translated into their own cloistered value system, this might give us a good idea of what really happened o'er there at least until that COMET album finally makes its way out.
I also got hold of a couple of old issues of CREEM, '72 vintage no less, in order to help resensify myself after way too much (accidental) logging on to "Ear Candle Blog" under the delusion that it might have some handy tips with regards to clearing my waxy aural canal blockage. A good idea true, but unfortunately the end results weren't as hotcha as I would have hoped...y'see, I thought that these issues would have improved my already keen sense of rockist acumen what with they being issues of classic, Lester Bangs-period CREEM (and what more needs to be said?), but given just how dull things could have gotten back in them dayze it really must have been difficult for these guys to crank out a what I would have hoped to have been total eruption publications considering that Ameriga was stuck somewhere in between the death of the New Left college kid tactics and the up-n-coming decadence that would slide into down home country jamz, not particularly in that order.

Smokey Robinson adorns the cover of the April '72 ish, but that's about all of the good I can say about this particular 'un which is sorely lacking in Lester Bangs (who in one of his rare appearances here even gives thumbs up to Carole King's MUSIC album....sheesh it really must have been a slow month considering that his lame "first time I've felt about a records since...Black Sabbath released MASTER OF REALITY" line predates Chuck Eddy's inverse hipsterism by a good twelve years) as well as the other front-runners in the CREEM sphere of things. And frankly, any magazine that relies on the likes of Dave Marsh and his spiritually sodomite-inclined bunch to keep it going is heading for a disaster even greater than BLACK TO COMM #22. I will 'fess up to the fact that there is some spunk in the Mad Peck's typically aloof review of the infamous JAMMING WITH EDWARD album (which I thought I could actually afford back then [turns out I couldn't] given how some stores were selling it for a cool $1.99) but mostly this 'un just had me down and out sans the usual rockist stimulation that's kept me alive for a longer time'n I can imagine.

The September '72 'un doesn't fare that much better, though the one item that does save this from being yet another bottom of the boxer's the appearance of legendary fanzine/British Weekly writer Jonh Ingham's article-length review of the infamous TAMI SHOW flick which hit the teenage theatre circuit during the closing days of 1964. I guess that given how much really wasn't going on in the early-seventies (unless you were able to get beneath the surface and dig way deep into the garages and basements of teenage USA) this was a top notch rock 'n roll article, and even judging by today's definitely anti-CREEM standards it passes the teenage oompah and high energy test with flying colors.

Definitely the spiritual equivalent of Lester Bangs' own missives on everything from the Stooges, Black Sabbath, Godz, Alice and Count Five, "Monster Rock Flick Flips Out Freaks Coast to Coast" sure did capture the feel and magic of an era that, although a good seven years in the past, must have seemed like a hunnerd given all of the socio-political upheaval and hippie drooling that had gone on since. Ingham's writing drips with that suburban slob teenage punk appeal that we all knew and love from other early-seventies rock writing classics and besides, where else could you find out that (according to Kim Fowley himself, or so Ingham sez) Gerry Marsden couldn't achieve climax unless a gal moved bowels upon his forehead and that Dean Torrence was arrested five times for something that is considered an enshrined right these sad 'n sorry days! Good thing Ingham didn't even dare to bring up fellow TAMI-er Leslie Gore who only admitted near the end something we all knew about from the get go! Sheesh, this article really makes me yearn for the better and simpler days when we knew right from wrong, and it wasn't what some smelly Social Justice Warrior (who, despite what some liberated types might think never woulda read CREEM even if you snuck it into its copy of OUR BODIES, OUR SELVES, 2015 edition) said it was!
Keeping with the same standards set by the previous few BLOG TO COMMs, here are this week's mostly freebee (all of 'em courtesy Bill Shute!) writeups of items that have graced mine ears other'n the ones mentioned above which we all knew about from previous posts anyway. Bill's really been keeping me busy with these burns, and if I do say so myself his selections of online wares downloadable with the flick of a wrist are getting better and better as the weeks progress. As for my own attempts at acquiring fresh and not-so booty to keep myself a-goin' well, still holding off on any really big purchases at least until Christmas when I'll have more time to listen (hah!), but thanks to Bill, Paul McGarry and the rest of you (some of who might be getting special requests from me for custom burns) I at least am managing to stay afloat in these somewhat rocky seas of blogdom. It would also help if more items conduit to the BLOG TO COMM way o' existence were comin' out, but we can't wish for everything now, can we?


As you may know I've always approached most of the Don Cherry platters extant with caution (his world music-y tendencies never did do me right), so it wasn't like I was looking forward to this the way I would THE COMPLETE SURVIVING RECORDINGS OF REVEREND B. But hey, these tracks laid down in Copenhagen and Stockholm satisfy me a whole lot more'n the usual outerworldly Cherry recordings of the past have. Disque #1 has a session done with an act called Opportunity that comes off as much "serious" classical as it does jazz. but thankfully it doesn't get into alla that intricate gamelan and neo-Afro/Eastern sound that sure bored me silly. The tracks with Terry Riley fare even better making me wonder why Shandar didn't have the good sense to release these back when the gettin' was good. The pairing of the two was a match up just as good as the time Riley hitched up with John Cale, and this taste of what might have been does make me wonder what else the duo was able to cook up and perhaps even lay down to tape.

The second platter features a session from '65 (or maybe it is '66...coulda been a typo either way) with Cherry leading a hot group that even features MJQ drummer Albert Heath. Kinda bop unto avant sounds here that won't satisfy the hardcore noise lovers, but if you like the various fifties pathways to freedom that the likes of Giuffre and Taylor were laying down these will sound better'n you probably expected, One caveat...there's only about fifteen minutes of sound available so right when you're really getting into the fever of the sesh poof it's gone!
Albert Brooks-A STAR IS BOUGHT CD-r burn (originally on Asylum)

Many comedy albums are usually about as funny as a felching contest on a marine corp base, and other'n a choice few old Monty Python cutouts I can't see myself spinning any that I've come across more'n a few times if that. 1975's A STAR IS BOUGHT ain't any different despite Albert Brooks being one of the brighter funnyguys to have popped up in the post-World War II era of snide. This is "perhaps" because (unfortunately) many of his gags tend to miss their prospective targets even worse than when Frank Zappa would take on disco or punk rock in his usual above-it-all way sounding nothing like the music that was being satirized. A few mildly amusing gems do appear such as his version of "Bolero" with sexed-up lyrics and THE JACK BENNY PROGRAM spoof, but otherwise the only future I could see for this 'un is some Sunday flea market circa 1979-1983.
Minoy-DOCTOR IN A DARK ROOK CD-r burn of a 1985 cassette (originally on Minoy Cassettworks)

Where were you during the mid-eighties "cassette culture", hmmmmmm? If you were the kind of person who would prowl the pages of OP and its various spinoffs back then you probably would have heard about things such as this mass of noise that hovers around the industrial aspects of things. Minoy do a good (if typical) home-cooked electronic sound here with loads of garble and buzz mixed in with other source materials that give off a musique concrete that is reminiscent of a few thousand similar experiments but so what. The second track entitled "Babel" features a whole lotta AM-radio crossfeed that reminds me of more'n a few cold rainy night listenings trying to get a station in after dark which does kinda fit in well because hey, I'm listening to (and reviewing) this on a cold rainy night!

This is obviously one of those easily-enough downloadable platters that sixties collectors woulda paid a hefty amount to get on a cheap C-60 tape forty years ago but can obtain for next to nothing via the computer of their choice. That is, if any serious British Invasion maniac back then (or today for that matter) woulda 'fessed up to liking this bunch who were considered the most poppy geek English group on the scene. Of course time has proven that Peter Noone and company were a whole lot straightforwardly energetic and top forty savvy (in the best ways) than most punks woulda given 'em credit for, and this rehash of the biggies (and other covers including a fairly driving version of "Talking About You") for the gal screamers proves their ultimate worth in the moptop shape of things. This was taken from the soundtrack to a British tee-vee special which (once again) makes me wonder why these kinda performances hardly ever made it to the cathodes over here and, for that matter, why we yankoffs were deprived of such programming as this as well as the MARC series which continues to bug me even to this day!

But past sour grapes aside, this recording does evoke the feeling of the British Invasion even w/o the visuals. Burn a copy for that overweight aged former 16-reading screaming meemee in your life!
Various Artists-UNSTOPPABLE EATMORE ERICKSON CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Yeesh, another one in which Bill neglected to put track listings on! So I guess I'll have to guess and guess good! Nice and vintage-y of the kinda vintage I like old ads (including one for the "Eno Upholstering Service"!) are sandwiched between things like a solo violin track that sounds like a Henry Flynt experiment of some sorts, a jazzy r&b number, a country twanger, some 78 probably taken from an old Grapevine Video release ("Singing in the Rain" is included in the medley making me wonder if this release is somehow related to the Joe Cook Broadway hit RAIN OR SHINE) early-eighties neo-hardcore drive from the days when even the folks at FORCED EXPOSURE were paying attention, a medley containing "Tea For Two" done symphonic-like (perhaps this was taken from the disque for a long lost early soundie?), a nice bouncy instrumental with chicken sounds and some early-seventies funk that coulda been the theme to a Norman Lear comedy that didn't make it past the pilot stage. The title did mislead me though...not a shred of Roky Erickson in sight and boy does that make me pout!

1 comment:

diskojoe said...

That Herman's Hermits thingie is actually from a TV special from Austraila & is avaiable as either a stand-alone DVD or as an extra in the Herman's Hermits documantary that Reeling In The Years put out. The funny thing about watching it is that the Aussie audience throws paper streamers @ the band throughout the concert, which is how they expressed themselves back then.