Thursday, December 13, 2018

ROCK 'N ROLL MAGAZINE REVIEW! UGLY THINGS #49 (available here)

You can tell (or at least can!) that it's a good issue of UGLY THINGS if I find myself springing from the magazine and onto my computer trying to dial up all sortsa information on things that I never knew existed before but gosh, I just gotta know more about 'em. It's sorta heart-warming to know that my Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder still lingers on after lo these many years, and boy did UT #49 get me all hot and bothered not only with the great Jay Dobis' piece on Turkish rock groups (and even traditional Turkish music which approaches psychedelic Velvet Underground frenzy!) but the Herve (Stinky Toys. Strike Up) Zenouda interview with that blurb not only about all-time rockscribe king Yves Adrien but those early French rock fanzines that I knew nothing about prior to picking this magazine up! Whoever said the French couldn't rock 'n roll certainly had more'n just a baguette stuck up their rear end!

Boy I feel like I did back when I was a mere sprout trying to locate any and ALL information on the slew of high energy post-Velvet Underground era of rock and all I hadda go on were a few tattered old CREEM magazine and maybe a CIRCUS, so frustrated that I would even check out THE MUSIC INDEX and be even more upset that such crucial reads like JAZZ AND POP were nowhere to be found within my sphere!

I sure hope I do find those Turkish recordings (hey, I know you read this blog Jay Dobis so howzbout sending some pertinent Turk music discography our way and end this undying pain!) as well as French fanzines I sure can't read but sure can OSMOSE,  but these items are not what make UGLY THINGS #49 such a wonderful read for this most festive of seasons (hah!). The cover story on Manfred Mann and the Manfreds was a pretty neat treat even if I ranked him more or less as mid-level British Invasion fun and jamz, and the story behind the Knaves of "Leave Me Alone" fame really got my mid-sixties juices a' flowin' even more'n when I was a kid and used to see Tina Louise's belly button on GILLIGAN'S ISLAND. The extended article on Cleveland's Death of Samantha seemed a li'l outside the usual UGLY THINGS scope but it was great even if Anastasia Pantsios loves not only the group but John Petkovic (she was interviewed for his Peter Laughner piece in (I believe but probably am wrong) THE PLAIN DEALER sayin' how highly she thought of him even if she did call him an asshole in her review of FROM THE VELVETS TO THE VOIDOIDS), and reading Greg Prevost's interview with Emitt Rhodes (originally published in OUTASITE) was great if only because Rhodes was like the least cooperative and most forgetful interview subject I've ever seen in my life! Unintentionally funny to the max and I'm surprised that Mr. Prevost consented to the re-publication of the piece!

One thing I must say about UGLY THINGS is that thankfully it retains that GOOD OLD STYLE OF TALK-TO-YOU AND NOT AT YOU ROCK 'N ROLL WRITING THAT WAS PRETTY MUCH ERADICATED IN THE EIGHTIES WHEN THE GONZ GENERATION DIED OUT AND WAS REPLACED BY HYPESHEET-PASTING HACKS! Remember back when you thought that people like Lester Bangs, Richard Meltzer, Mike Saunders, you know the drill, were on YOUR side by the way they expressed their appreciation or disdain for certain sounds that were more or less the makeup of your entire musical DNA? Well, the folk at UGLY THINGS are ON YOUR SIDE, and taking a dive into this particular mag is kinda like taking a bath after being grubbed up by the boring old fogey sounds that pass for the music of our lives that you just can't escape from no matter how hard you try! And as you know boy do I do my best to avoid the tasteful and talented sounds of today, which is why I cling to my UGLY THINGS the way Bill Shute would shoot anyone who tried to pry his Elvis collection from his not yet dead fingers!

Naturally there's much more to this issue like the various reviews and reg'lar columns, and as you might guess when I go through the review section the first thing I look for are  not only Shute's various to-the-point write-ups, scholarly guy he is, but a lotta the other guys whose opinions I cherish more than Ann Powers'. Not as much hotcha good stuff comin' out like it should, but I just might get that double EP set made up by those Cords guys from BACK FROM THE GRAVE VOLUME ONE if the entire thing is as crazy as their "Ghost Power" single side was! Kinda tapped out now, but that one definitely is on my gotta have list, as it gotta be on yours!

A really good job, this mag, and it just might save you from succumbing to the doldrums that post 1980 living has got you in. I wonder if anybody in the real world knows about UGLY THINGS and has showered it with the accolades this magazine most surely deserves? Naaaaah...

1 comment:

Xanthor Fek said...

I just saw your review of Ugly Things #49. For cool Turkish Psych:
HAVA NARGHILE (released in 2001 on Bacchus Archives) is the best initiation into this stuff (and I put the comp together. Some but not all is on YT). More stuff: Erkin Koray - Elektronik Türküler/Üç Hürel/Bariş Manço – Ben Bilirim/Molğollar live at Fitaş on YT and 2 different CDs called Anadolu Pop/Selda (Bağcan) (best female psych. For a few years now she’s been backed by the great Israeli band Boom Pam. There’s a live album from a few years ago. And her ‘70s stuff is still in print on her Turkish label)/Ersen/Edip Akbayram/Uzelli Psychedelic Anadolu (CD comp released a year or so ago. A ‘70s-‘80s label in Germany for Turks)/Love Peace and Poetry (comp)/Cem Karaca/Grup Bunalim/Baba Zula (current band led by co-leader of ZeN, a band I managed in the ‘90s. ZeN’s best album was recorded live at Bakırköy mental hospital)Replikas (their 3rd album “Avaz” is an amazing psych album. They also released an album of covers of great Turk rock from the ‘70s that was released in the U.S. on Dionysus Records: “Biz Burada Yok Iken.”/ Orhan Seyfi Çelik released a great album in the ‘80s called “Turkish Delight.” (I got my copy from Jello Biafra)/Mavi Işıklar (great ‘60s beat)/The Ringo Jets (current band. Their song “Spring of War” is about the Gezi Park protest in 2013. Also listen to “Children of the Revolution,” “Trippin’/ “Heart Full of Soul”/ two current Euro bands doing this stuff: Altın Gun and Derya Yıldırım & Grup Şimşek/ Napalm Victims – ah uh oh (‘70s Turkish punk)/ Fikret Kızılok & Tehlikeli Madde (Fikret also put a folk masterpiece “Zaman Zaman” that is unlike anything else I’m mentioning/ V.A.: Turkish Ladies 60s 70s (recent release)/ Zaher Dilek – Süpürgesi yoncadan/ Kamuran Akkor ‘70s pop icon (collection released a few years ago/
Okay Temiz – the most famous Turkish jazz musician (live album with Don Cherry and recorded with some great musicians in the ‘70s in Scandinavia, particularly SEVDA and ORIRNTAL WIND.
For traditional Turk (saz players): Arif Sağ (some killer stuff from ‘70s)/Neşet Ertaş/Ali Akber Çiçek/
Much of these guys have been re-released in recent years or can be heard on Youtube.