Saturday, November 21, 2020

As we used to say inna stoolyard back when I was a mere single-digited kid, howz it hangin'! Naturally none of us knew what that meant since we were onlly mimickin' the older, street wise kids but anyway, for me a whole LOTTA things are "hangin'" due to age 'n gravity but that's besides the point. Actually I'm one chipper kinda guy who has a whole lot to look forward to including whatever new (and old!) sounds that may come my way not to mention whatever reading material I might be able to snatch up too pass my idle time away. These things sure makes my non-work hours all the merrier and give me an excuse not to do any of the much needed home and yard work despite all the neighborhood petitions to the contrary. 

Anyway, given the years of flotsam/jetsam I've acquired with regards to reading and listening to countless books and records you can bet that I'm well stocked for any future dry spells in the under-the-counterculture sweepstakes! Given the ones we've had on and off for quite some time that's really sayin' somethin'! Of course my collection ain't as humongous as many of the others I've been privy of seein' but ya gotta admit that I sure try harder...boasting about my comparatively miserable collection which I'm sure is quite miniscule when stacked up to yours, but then again you never hadda subsist of depression era wages and make the best of it like I hadda! Oh well, maybe if I get another run at life I'm sure that I'll acquire a whole slew of albums that'll make yours seem rather dwindling in comparison. But then again if there is such a thing as reincarnation I'll probably come back as a higher life form, like a retching jackal or something to that effect.
Anyway, I just happ'd to catch this 'un while cruising the web and boy was I surprised! Y'see, a few days ago none other'n our former prez, namely one Barak H. Obama, just happ'd to make some comment/statement to the effect that the current prez, Donald J. Trump, is not (now get this!) John Wayne, but (now get this!!!) RICHIE RICH!!!!! As you can guess boy, was I heart warmed to read that a major Amerigan figure such as Mr. Obama even remembers who this old tyme comic book and tee-vee character was which, naturally, makes me feel all toasty inside knowin' that these kinda good ol' everyday sorta kiddie characters are remembered by the chattering class of which Mr.  Obama is most definitely a part of!

Wow, to think that a character whom I've grown up with via barber shop magazine racks is still vital enough to merit a mention at that, and from one of the bigger names on the behind-the-scenes deep state political machine t'boot! Of course alla this just dredges up a few thoughts regarding the once-vilified (by all but a few smarties out there) Harvey Comics line...if Donald Trump is indeed Richie Rich what does that make Obama...Hot Stuff? (Actually I was considering saying "Spooky" but I'm sure that would offend more than a few precious petunias out there which makes me wonder why I didn't use it inna first place!)
Ss usual I do hope you like the vast array of reviews listed below (yeah, right!). All of 'em 'cept for the Plastic People effort and the Bill Shute "Virtual Thrift Store" collection were sent to me by none other'n Paul McGarry, a biped who knows how to arrive just in the nick ' time just like the cavalry right when the supplies are low and the Indians are disappointed that there's nothing to scalp on me. 'n ya know what...he actually sent a few items of worth my way this time so let's just settle back and not only imagine just how dreary a world without Paul McGarry would be, but just how DEVESTATING it would be without me!

The Plastic People of the Universe-MAN WITH NO EARS CD (Kissing Spell Records, England)

I hate to say it but I got bamboozled! Having had a fix for some be'er heard before Plastic People recordings I decided to snatch this 'un up thinkin' that it was gonna satiate my wants and desires for some late-sixties trash principles in music. However when I slapped it on I realized that this actually was but a reissue of the boffo MUZ BEZ USI collection that's been around for quite some time, here reissued to people who are rather attuned to the English as opposed to the ways of Czech readin' ritin' 'n' rythmatic. 

Well if you ain't got that 'un you can get this, and it's certainly worth the effort to track down considering just how well the Plastic People took the better moments of late-sixties rock and molded it to fit their own Eastern European vision. Some classics appear including brief covers of "Motherly Love",  "Milk Cow Blues", "Foxy Lady" and "It's All Over Now "which will naturally make your ears perk up like nothin' since Petey's. And really, how can any of you readers not relate to a song called "Rosie Rottencrotch"?
The Grateful Dead-TERRAPIN STATION CD-r burn (originally on Grateful Dead Records)

Yet another offering from Public Deadhead #1 McGarry which makes me wonder just how many veggieburgers the guy has been eating as of late. Lemme tell ya, this 'un is an utter poopathon par excellence what with the funky disco version of "Dancing in the Streets" not to mention the mix 'n mulch of varying styles to nil effect on the "Terrapin Station" suite. The entire effort only goes to show ya just how much San Fran had gone HACK in its effort to be hip 'n uppa date just like all of those new hitmakers skidmarking up the airwaves in the seventies. Bohos trying to pass themselves off as everyday slobbos sittin' onna front porch and y'know, maybe it does kinda work itself  out on that level.
Augustus Pablo-KING TUBBY MEETS UPTOWN ROCKERS CD-r burn (originally on Yard Music Records)

I dunno why Paul McGarry keeps sendin' me these old reggae spinners since I never was one who appreciate what sounds like calypso music slowed down and chopped up somewhat. But these (mostly) instrumentals from down for the struggler Augustus Pablo are quite mesmerizing with that right touch of tension and nerve which is what attracted me to "rebel music" (in the purest SLASH terminology) inna first place. Best thing about this is that some of these tracks sound almost like early-sixties popsters with even more freaked out effects than Joe Meek would have come up with during some of his more occult moments. Actually holds up well enough to capture this old fanablas' attention which is really sayin' somethin' since I won't absorb myself unto any record these days unless it has a strident Velvet Underground throb (recorded before dummies like myself even knew about it!) feel to it!
The Pretty Things-BARE AS BONE, BRIGHT AS BLOOD CD-r burn (originally on Madfish Records)

Guess this will be the last ever real Pretty Things platter and to that I say pretty good way to go out, guys! Not sure who these Things are but I'll ass-soom that this is but Phil May singing along to Dick Taylor's guitar (with a li'l harmonica) and the two without any additional clutter sure made a great introspective inna right way deep and (gosh darn it!) moving effort that sure puts some of those other whiteguy efforts to attempt the blues in their proper place. With a whole load of our six-oh faves having disappointed us with their swan songs at least the Pretty Things don't have any reason to be ashamed of how they treated their fans!
Nick Lowe and Los Straightjackets-WALKABOUT CD-r burn (originally on Yep Roc Records)

Didn't even know this old codger was up and about here inna twenties but he is and this 'un with Los Straightjackets has just been released for anyone and everyone who still wears their Stiff Records pins proudly.  It's pretty much what one would expect, as if Lowe's MO woulda changed any since the late-seventies, with that same sorta pop feeling and swerve that had more'n a few goofs prowling the import bins of the past just so's they could have a JESUS OF COOL 'stead of a PURE POP FOR NOW PEOPLE album in their collection. Old tracks and re-dos make this an at least one-a-lifetime spin, at least in my lifetime that is.

The Chocolate Watchband-REVOLUTION REINVENTED CD-r burn (originally on Twenty Stone Blatt Records)

Sheesh, who do the Chocolate Watchband think they are re-recording their more famous tracks and slappin' 'em on a new (by now eight-year-old) album anyway, the Troggs? Yeah, well the Troggs' re-dos ended up on some budget label that I can't for the life of me find, and this 'un's more or less aimed towards collectors rather'n sudzy housewives so's I guess you won't be seein' it in the flea market stacks any time soon. Despite lead singer Dave Aguilar having lost his snarl I must admit that these are pretty good re-dos too that even a few of you more jaded types out there might wanna give a spin to.

Various Artists-ODE TO SUNNY VILLAGE CLOWNS CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Here's a Shute surprise in that the entire slab o' aluminum features nothing but pre-avgarde bop that sure made for some rather decent listening while typing my latest letter to Brad Kohler. Names both familiar and not pepper up this particular spinner which comes off with some rather pure feel, even if we have to experience George Adams working out a cover of "Send in the Clowns" (well, his take was much better'n the one I heard Jerry Lewis do on some seventies variety show!). Too lazy to find out, but is the James Brown who did the "What Kinds of Man" single THEE James Brown or one of a millyun guys who happen to have the exact same name? Maybe some of you readers c'n find out for me but to be honest about it I'd say....naah!


If you liked what's been written above then there's a good chance you'll like what was written in the wide array of BLACK TO COMM back issues that are easily enough available for whatever hopefully moral pleasure you might derive from them. But then again you might not, as if alla you tuner-inners are copasetic with the high energy rock 'n roll spirit that's been SPURTED from these pages for quite some time. Sheesh, I didn't know there were so many Ann Powers fans out there!


Bill S. said...

That's THE James Brown, from his 1968 tribute album to Little Willie John, 'Thinking About Little Willie John and a Few Nice Things,' which rarely gets mentioned nowadays. Don't think it's ever been reissued in North America, and I don't even see a Japanese reissue listed on Discogs. It's NOT a big-ticket collectable, so JB fans should keep an eye out for it. There was even an 8-track release of it.

top_cat_james said...

No, Chris--Obama would be (the appropriately-named) Nightmare, Casper's equine pal. They even have the same teeth. *WHINNY*

debs said...

lol terrapin station is super lol that's about it, tho' lol

diskojoe said...

That new Pretty Things is mostly Phil & Dick, wseveral other musicians also contributing. The promo sticker thingie actually says "In Memorimum Phil May November 1944-May 1920"

Alvin Bishop said...

Keep 'em comin, Chris!

I've got Ultimate Spinach on the turntable today! Pure psych for Beantown people! (Chuckle!)


New York 'Dolf said...

What a load of hippy-dippy BS!

If the old Soviet bloc gov'ts were worth their salt mines, The Plastic People would've been shipped to Siberia and never heard from again.

Kill a hippy every day.

MoeLarryAndJesus said...

You know why Nazis can't spell hippie?

It's because they're fucking idiots.