Sunday, December 11, 2016

Boy have the past few weeks got me feelin' old. First it was Fidel Castro and now I find out that none other than former astronaut and US senator John Glenn has kicked the colostomy can at the ripe old age of 95! Considering how both the names and visages of Castro and Glenn have been flashed in front of my TV eyes my entire life I really can't help but feel the pangs of age creeping up on me more and more finding out that both of these early-sixties personalities are now colder'n Nanook.

Sure Castro wasn't exactly a Mr. Nice Guy when I was growing up (y'see, I was never part of the same communist chic circles I get the feeling many of you readers had sprung up around) but John Glenn...sheesh, he was the closest thing to Captain Ameriga to happen when I was but a mere turdler! I still remember watching those rocket launches on that squatty portable tee-vee we used to have (not the one we got later which I watched the Kennedy headburst coverage on) and even to this day remember my mother warning me to be careful when I take a bath because John Glenn had slipped and fell while getting outta the tub! I guess that the mere mention of Glenn konking his noggin in the bathroom was enough to rate national news back then, which only goes to prove that the know-all-see-all news process we have these days really ain't anything new!

At least we still have Kirk Douglas, who turned the big 100 just a few short days ago, amongst the living! Yet another name that I've heard tossed around ever since I can remember and even though I thought he was some actor aimed at the old set well...happy birthday Kirk even though your oral-sex saturated son just ain't the kinda guy you made yourself out to be for years onna silver screen!
Udder than that the Good Book says nothing new under the sun which is why all of my pleasures are of old ginchy goodies! Still pouring through the bodacious box of BEETLE BAILEY paperbacks which have been occupying my time during these long winter nights (that and of course the platters that you will be reading about shortly) and as I expected these books have really helped get me through these modern dreg-like times with their short but snappy humor. Brings me back to them days when a simple paperback going for fifty cents (more if it was a MAD one) was a fifty cents that went a whole lot more towards my benefit than all of the moolah the folks pumped alla them so-called "educational" books into my libary (no sic). And frankly, who other than me could get so much bliss outta reading some comic about General Halftrack's lust for Miss Buxley while PARADIESWARTS DUUL spins on the bedroom boom box? Never inna millyun years...
BOY DID I FALL FOR THIS RIP-OFF, AND MAN DON'T YOU MAKE THE SAME MISTAKE I DID! Well, it looked so tempting what with the retro-TMOQ insert cover and promise of a recently-unearthed Amon Duul live show, but once you get down to brass tacks and connect your needle to the groove LUA-LUA-HE ain't nuthin' but that same ol' B-13 swipe of SINGVOGEL RUCKWARTS done up in a new cover complete with that oh-so-tempting come on just BEGGIN' us starved fans to pick this fabrication up. Considering that this particular album's probably my least-liked Amon Duul spinner it ain't like I'm thrilled to have another copy of that in my collection either. but with that hotcha bootleg insert well, it does stand out tall 'n proud! Guess I gotta chalk this one up in the "live and learn" department, though I somehow get the idea that even after alla these years and alla these rip offs I've been taken into I'll NEVER learn!
I actually had a rather busy week listening to new material even though, for the life of me, I can't find out where I stashed the rest of my Feeding Tube package from whence the Gregg Turner platter reviewed last week came from! I'm sure those spinners'll pop up more later than sooner but until then enjoy these disques that have made up my listening pleasure these past seven or so twirls...

Alfred 23 Harth's BERLIN ENSEMBLES CD-r burn (Kendra Steiner Editions)

Wow, I was obviously familiar with Harth's other work for KSE, but this live outing puts them in the shade so-to-speak. This is more than just a Harth recording as the man explains himself...more or less an ensemble effort in the same vein as the Art Ensemble of... or Revolutionary... or even such greats as Freedomland where each and every member is part and parcel to the creative drive. With the likes of guitarist Kazuhisa Uchihashi and string bassist Clayton Thomas helping out its gogoGO from here to Bizoo and back with a Euroafro drive that recalls Peter Brotzmann hanging out with Derek Bailey for a session before the pair head out to their favorite schnitzel palace. Onetime New York "downtown" guitarist Elliott Sharp joins the band for some "electroacoustic guitar" on track three and fits in well with these professionals. Reminds me of some of the fun chaos that was going down at the old CBGB Lounge during the freestyle series and if you were one (like me) who tuned into the livestreams to catch some of the heroes of the past mix it up with the up-and-comers well, DO I HAVE TO TELL YOU ANY MORE???
The Shaggs-PHILOSOPHY OF THE WORLD CD (Light in the Attic, available via Forced Exposure)

Sheesh, why would a moolah-strapped fella such as I wanna dish out more than I can afford bucks on a reissue such as this? Especially since I already have the early-eighties 'un that brought this album to the attention of a world fulla confused individuals trying to find their inner voice through overpriced Public Image imports. And like hey, the life and legend of this 'un has been reamed through many of our memories ever since Phil Milstein's article on 'em that actually popped up in the debut issue of KICKS. So why did I latch onto this one? For Lenny Kaye's exemplary liner notes that's why! Hardly get to read his opines these days and next to the offal passing for rock screeding these days (my output included) they sure read swell and conjure up many a memory of rock writing successes past!
SOGGY CD (Outer Battery France, available via Forced Exposure)

Moolah-strapped me also dished out for a Cee-Dee copy of the Soggy platter, and somehow I don't get the impression that my hard-begged was wasted in the process. I bought this not only because this platter is such a good one, heavy metal the way it used to be before the great burn-out of 1972, but because like sheesh, these guys did such a great job cranking out the high energy sounds that maybe they should get more francs for their efforts which they can take home to the bank! If this 'un come out back in 1981 when it shoulda, boy would it have caved in a whole lotta brains that were just beggin' for it!
Thunderpussy-DOCUMENTS OF CAPTIVITY CD-r burn (originally on The Wild Places)

Y'know, these early-seventies self-made heavy metal albums usually do pack a load of punch and Thunderpussy is no exception. Sure some of this can snooze you out more'n a Karen Quinlan group therapy session, but when this act gets cooking they do an even better job'n some of the big names on the early-seventies major label circuit. Ignore the more intricate and definitely progressive-preening parts of this (not to mention the jazzed-up cover of Eleanor Rigby") and you might actually get a few pre-AOR freeform thrills outta this!
The Ventures-ANOTHER SMASH CD-r burn (originally on Dolton)

Hey, like what c'n I say? Have any of these early Ventures albums been whatcha'd call downright doof 'n depressing like a good portion of the rock recs post 1968 or so have been??? Anyhoo here's another one of those early longplayers that really get me in the 1962 rec room of my heart what with their pounding takes on the boff instrumentals of the day from Link Wray's "Rawhide" and the romantic schmoozer "Last Date" to even some of the geekier if still top notch enough for me numbers like the Stringalongs' "Wheels". If God didn't create the Ventures then the flea market bins would have had to!
Wishniaks-NAUSEOUS AND CRANKY CD-r burn 

Fer bein' a buncha nineties-vintage amerindie undergrounders at least these guys had a bit of swig to 'em. Not quite overemote self-conscious sensitive sounding rock, this EP does churn out a few interesting psychedelic moves to accompany the usual trends that were going on at the time. Nothing I'd really want to spin that much in my life but I gotta credit 'em for doing a good enough job of it without seeping into that crybaby daddy cut off my trust fund feeling heard too often from this genre.

Natural Child-OKEY DOKEY CD-r burn (originally on Natural Child)

I usually don't cozy up to these laid back rock efforts but this one actually kept me occupied for its entire run. Natural Child's moniker might evoke mental visions of overbearing early-seventies hippie front porch Marin County love and beads jams, but these guys are even better here than they were on their first effort reviewed a coupla years back. The Rolling Stones during their countrified days come to mind as do the Allman Brothers, a group that I actually loathed for quite some time and still do come to think of it, but at least Natural Child takes their Deep South reckonings and puts them to good use. I find OKEY DOKEY entertaining and dare-I-say pleasing to the mind without hearkening back to all of those bad things that ruined early-seventies FM radio. If this were to have been snuggled in between Captain Beyond and whoever that group that used to do "Pitter Patter" was it would sound perfectly in place on the local freeform station. Even to the point where I might not even flick the thing off!
Various Artists-JECKLE CHARITY DYNATONE FEELING CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

You could call this one a "typical" Bill burn, and it sure is. Amidst the smattering of under-the-PEBBLES garage band rock (the K-Otics, the Judge 'n Jury's better'n expected Rolling Stones swipe "Roaches") there's one of those outta-nowhere 78 rpm rousers from an Eddie Morton to contend with ("Noodle Soup Song") as well as yet another bit of musique concrete from someone called Hyaena Fierling whom I assume is the kinda subject matter THE VILLAGE VOICE is donating a whole lotta space to these days. Most of it holds up swell enough for those lonely Saturday afternoons (which are about as lonely as the Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays etc. around here) and as usual I can't find fault with any of it even if these garage band sides at times come off bottom of the barrel scrapings. Also hotcha were the old ads for nose drops and Ken-L-Ration dog food which really got the pre-teen lunchroom crowd howling what with the "my dog's bigger than your dog" (use yer imagination) line!

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