Saturday, May 28, 2016

Things are continuing to look upper than up here at BLOG TO COMM central what with the arrival of the boffo S to S release (praise be to Guerssen!) and other fine items that the likes of Bill Shute and Paul McGarry, both of who have been more supportive than Maidenform, sent my way. And since there really ain't much else that I can blab on about regarding my various weekly endeavors (unless you wanna know which old comic books I dug outta the collection to read or how many rolls of toilet paper I went through) let's get on with the show!

S TO S CD (Sommer, available through Guerssen)

Hmmm, some late-seventies heavy metal that (believe-you-me!) not only comes off typical of the late-seventies metallic mindset complete with hard chording and whining singer but sounds good despite it all as well! Considering just what a dump late-seventies metal was S to S (the group as well as the album) is a pretty hefty accomplishment what with the guitar blare actually sounding like an interstellar air raid siren 'stead of those pyrotechnical clean lines that Eddie Van Halen was wowing dimwitted rock critics with. The vocalist sounds like he got his 'nad stuck in a vice which does help out the proceedings quite a bit. Best thing about it is that all of those flash metaphors and similes and other niceties that Andy Secher used when describing WASP and RATT back inna eighties could easily be conjured up here, and a whole lot more accurately at that! I'll bet that if Secher heard this particular platter he'd either keel over or run to the security of mom's boobies for some much-needed comfort. My bet's on the former but I certainly wouldn't rule the latter out!
Archie and the Bunkers meet the Cleveland Steamers- "Hung Up On You" one-sided 45 rpm single (Dome/Smog Veil)

I really dunno just how you can get hold this mail only recording that I guess is one of those "limited edition" platters obtainable only on certain days between the hours of two and four inna morning when there's a full moon, but it's worth getting even if you can hear the thing on youtube like everyone else. I dunno exactly where the Bunkers begin and the Steamers end (or something like that) on this 'un but it's a good rouser, a mid-sixties styled local band crankout a la the Fleshtones only with some sultry femme voice singing the title over and over. Sounds good enough to have been an actual late-sixties recording by some long-forgotten act who is only now getting the exhumation hosannas, only this was recorded in the here and now which really does knock me for a loop-de-loop! Now if I can only turn on the tee-vee and get an eyefulla HONEY WEST...
The Warner Brothers Orchestra Conducted by Carl Brant-TOP TV THEMES OF '64 CD-r burn (originally on Warner Brothers)

Well if I can't see any of these long-ignored if boffo television series again at least I can listen to some fairly accurate cover versions of their theme songs! And considering how the 1963-64 tee-vee season was the first I can clearly remember being hyped in my own turdler world this spinner really does bring back those pre-school gosh-it-all days more'n even an old Veg-O-Matic commercial. PETTICOAT JUNCTION, PATTY DUKE and MY FAVORITE MARTIAN all make the cut as do themes from a buncha programs I sure wish I could get a peek at these days like ARREST AND TRIAL and BREAKING POINT. If these shows are as good as their theme songs were then they might have been the crowning pinnacle of television then or now. If you were a suburban slob car-playing underwear-skidding scab-picking kinda fanabla during those funtime days then well, this 'un'll really bring back the memories!
NEW ORIGINAL TV THEMES CD-r burn (originally on Wyncote)

What...more tee-vee theme songs??? Well if the Warner Brothers ones were phonier'n all heck then these themes done up by the budget Wyncote label are even phonier than phony! But they're cool enough, 'specially if you had folk like I did who were pinching pennies beyond belief and couldn't stand to part with the $3.98 list to pick up the real deal and hadda settle for supermarket bin busters like this! Oddly enough out of all of the series presented here THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. was the only one we were front and center for* but hey, it was sure fun listening to these songs (and songs "inspired" by them shows) which reminded me of a funner time that was to be had watching the boob tube before the intellectual snobs took it over.
Bill Riley-HARMONICA AND THE BLUES CD-r burn (originally on Crown)

Yes this is the "Flying Saucers Rock 'n Roll" guy doing some rather convincing harmonica blooze that sounds so good in its cracklin' glory that you can just feel the history of the album this recording was taken from starting with its early-sixties snatch up at some bargain store to late-seventies flea market dump and who knows what beyond that. The cheapness that was Crown Records only helps the overall bloozey effect and even though it runs a good 23 minutes and no more I sure got a whole lot more jam-packed excitement outta this'n I did through four sides of CHICAGO TRANSIT AUTHORITY. Naw I never listened to that and plan on never doing so, but you wouldn't think it was cool if I mentioned ESCALATOR OVER THE HILL like I originally planned on doing.
Various Artists-SONGS THE NEW YORK DOLLS TAUGHT US CD-r burn (originally on Chaputa Records)

Uh, shouldn't that be SONGS WE TAUGHT THE NEW YORK DOLLS??? Whadevva, here are the original versions of a bunch of tunes covered either by the Dolls proper or one of them spinoffs, and as far as these compilations of tracks we've had for years packaged under a certain "theme" goes well, I don't think anybody can do better'n this! All of them old time favorites by everyone from Bo Diddley to the Shangri-Las and Muddy Waters appear, and as the old tee-vee ad said you'd have to pay millions to get these in their original forms so save some bucks and get this 'un! I hope there's a similar set comin' our way entitled SONGS WE TAUGHT THE ELECTRIC EELS because I can really go for something as out-there as that! (The Lawson's "Big O" commercial, "Dead Man's Curve", "Strychnine", the theme from THE FLINTSTONES...)
Modern Art Studio-MAS MANIA CD-r EP

Speaking of the Electric Eels, did you know that these guys used to make up the original Cool Marriage Counselors, the same act that backed Dave E for a number of gigs before breaking out on their own??? Guess not, but anyway the Modern Art Studio continued on that madcap crazy Dave E-styled sound that one would have thought could only come out of Cleveland and as far as the yuks go they really could deliver on 'em with gusto! Sound's pretty basement level which helps, and the material is art damaged as they used to say yet still sturdy enough to come off more than some pretentious art project. Highlight: the rocked out version of Barry Sadler's "Ballad of the Green Berets" which is something we all coulda used back when the original was tearing up the airwave!
The Miamis-WE DELIVER CD-r burn (originally on Omnivore)

There was another Miamis collection issued a few years back but this 'un's better even with the various repeats which ain't that bad in themselves. The live tracks from CBGB containing a whole slew of new numbers (including a rather touching tribute to the then recently-deceased Groucho Marx, Bing Crosby and Elvis Presley...what, no Marc Bolan?) show a pretty hot urgency that almost equals that of the Flamin' Groovies, and on the whole this bunch prove that they could have been one of those late-seventies outta nowhere pop rock top ten acts that were short in supply but managed to hit on rare occasion. Pretty exhilarating in fact and hey, if these recordings had only gotten out in the seventies maybe our youths would have been justified a bit more than they unfortunately were.
Various Artists-EMERGENCE DU REFUS - VOLUME 2 CD-r burn

More than a few budding musicians put their aural moseyings to tape (and actually tried to sell 'em!) back in the eighties, and that even goes for experimental electronic types like the ones who end up on this mid-eighties offering! It's just more of that synthesizer blurp and bleep stuff that a whole slew of people were doing back then (and probably now for that matter to which I say "SHAME ON YOU!"), and if you go for industrial clank and clurn well then go for it! Personally I've lost a lotta my tolerance for this kinda sonic expression so it didn't really do me much good, though it you woulda pointed this one my way a good three decades back well, I might have sung a complete different (atonal) tune about this than I am now!
Various Artists-PIANETI DI LANA 3 CD-r burn (originally on Technological Feeling, Italy)

Now that we're on the subject of home made electronic woozerie this is more like it. It's sure nicey-nice to give a listen to something that is supposed to be experimental or avant garde that ain't just a pile of jackhammers blaring away in your ear canals, or the precocious posturings of whatever precious example of college boy geld-dom there may be out there as well. And when you get deep down into these tracks you can discern a whole lotta ideas that everyone from John Cage ca. "Imaginary Landcape # Whatever" to Nurse With Wound had been trotting out for quite awhile. Something nice to bounce about in the caverns that pass for the interior of your cranium instead of the usual candy floss sounds you've probably been inundating yourself with these past umpteen years.
Various Artists-READY JAN-JAN DUDE ENCHANTER CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Short if sweet collection. Maybe a bit too much late-fifties/early-sixties doo wop on the schedule but I don't really mind that much. I wonder if the Searchers of "I'm Ready" (a nice re-cap of late-fifties post-Hollyisms) is "thee" British Invasion wonders, while Grant Green's "Jan Jan"'s up and moving r 'n b instrumental organ grind that kept my psyche stable for a good seven or so minutes. Eddie Zack's "Kaw-liga" was about as cheapo country knockoff as you could imagine (and I personally can't imagine why the guy would wanna release it since everybody was out there buying the hit version to be bothered with this!) and Ike Quebec's "Me 'n You" was more or less standard jazz guitar that would put your typical Sonny Sharrock fan to sleep (I think Wes Montgomery was OK, especially the way he used the wart on his thumb as a pick!). Dude Ranchers did me good as well esp. with their "Boogie Woogie Guitar" and hey, were the Bel-Aires a Kim Fowley production---judging from "Space Walk" I kinda get that idea!

*I tried watching TARZAN but the shift from Africa to India and lack of Jane, Cheetah or Boy did nada for me and hey, only Johnny Weissmuller or Elmo Lincoln can play Tarzan in my book 'n no one else! As for GREEN HORNET well, it just didn't have the same verve as BATMAN so that one got ignored 'round here as well.

1 comment:

Bill S. said...

Re Tarzan, I would like to put in a good word for both Lex Barker and Gordon Scott!