Sunday, May 10, 2009


Happy Mofo Day y'all. Not much happening here on the ranch what with the absolute dearth of hotcha proto-punk 'n generally high energy items headin' my way'n all, but I am still shuffling through the Care Packages of CD-Rs that Bill Shute and Paul McGarry have parachute-dropped my way (just played Dave Burrell's ECHO which I don't think has been reissued on disque proper and man does it remain a doozy!) and I'm romping through some DVDs that I know will get the royal treatment once I view and digest ever frame of 'em to my own personal satisfaction. Until then here are a few tasties to chomp down on which I hope you'll get some satisfaction outta especially considering the drought we've been forced to go through at least for the past five months or so...

Various Artists-ROCKY MOUNTAIN LOW; THE COLORADO MUSICAL UNDERGROUND OF THE LATE 1970s double LP, CD and 24-page booklet set (

The letter I got that accompanied the envelope containing all of the above unmentionables (condensed into one compact disque...dunno what happened to the other one promised in the letter) said that "this may not be entirely to your liking" almost as if the gentleman who had sent the thing was APOLOGIZING for the contents to be found therein. Sheesh, what kinda way is that to sell your hard-worked/hard-edged labor of love to a cynical and over-the-top/hill rockblogger like myself anyway? If you ask me, a good hunkin' portion of this late-seventies Colorado underground rock "sampler" is to my liking, for this is punk before it became punque and a pretty (hopefully?) representative documentary of yet another facet of that brave DIY scene that birthed an uncountable number of great groups as well as astronomical bids in record auctions ever since! If you want to save millions just like those old tee-vee record collection commercials would tell us you'd do yourself proud by snatching up a copy of ROCKY MOUNTAIN LOW and have a time to be had just like back in the late-eighties when all of those KILLED BY DEATHs were thrilling you out of more'n just your trust fund monies!

Hokay, so maybe late-seventies punkisms aren't quite thrilling me the same way the same stuff of an early/mid-seventies vintage does these days, but it still fills the bill more than, say, the 1987 Chuck Eddy playlist so why should I knock it anyway? And believe it or not (this is not some overactive imagination hyperbole for a disque that will be soon forgotten) but I also gotta say that just about every track on ROCKY MOUNTAIN LOW is worth your while, and true you could say that a sizable portion may be derivative of the big guns just like you'd find ANYWHERE ELSE ON THE PLANET but it's still high quality rock & roll especially when it hits its low quality best. I find these excursions into the punk realm a whole lot more adventurous, more thrilling in a suburban squat kinda way than I would various other attempts at aping the New York and London sounds handed down to us via ROCK SCENE perhaps because of this isolated scene being able to develop without too much interference from outside...I think.

Waywayway too many items to mention here so I'll just blab about a few of my faves, like Radio Pete's early ('76) low-fi Barrettesque paens to John F. Kennedy as well as the Guy's all-gal snot rock to forgetting my faves of the batch, the Dancing Assholes who put the Flintstone Flop into their already garage-level recordings to the point where you wonder if the Urinals haven't been listening in and taking notes. You get it all, punk, proto-hardcore, post-garage, Phil Gammage before he went to New York and even the enclosed booklet sports a snap of a long-haired, wire-rimmed and unshaven Eric Boucher hanging out with Joey Ramone! So what else were you looking for???
ROCK'S WILD THINGS; THE TROGGS FILES by Alan Clayson and Jacqueline Ryan (Helter Skelter, 2000)

Yeah we really need a biography of perhaps thee (2nd to Kinks) all um-portant British Invasion group of all time, but I don't think this 'un is exactly "it" in pure Clara Bow-speak. Oh, author Alan Clayson (working with a Jacqueline Ryan...wonder if that's pronounced "Jack-qua-LEEN") is a good enough biographer as his Yoko Ono book will attest to, but somehow his handling of the Troggs saga is a rather dry affair, reading as if it were merely compiled from a good fortysome years of NME and MELODY MAKER articles with maybe a touch of his own personal ideals (including a snide Lester Bangs putdown!) thrown in just to leave his imprint on the thing. Good enough for facts, but I'm not Joe Friday and frankly I think that GORILLA BEAT's 1980 Troggs cover story complete with interview was a whole lot livelier than this particular retelling. At least the book sports some fine Troggs snaps ranging from various nifty pre-Troggs photos to one where the foursome are riding the range in the United States complete with cowboy hats! Hip Hip Hooray!

Another TMOQ "budget" release featuring the first two sides of the MICK'S BIRTHDAY PARTY boot on its lonesome and in what HOT WACKS calls "satisfactory mono" but I call a throwback to the glory days of cylinders. Even with all of the crackles and general lack of wit and intelligence that went into this 'un (at least compared with those William Stout delineated and color vinyl TMOQ releases that I used to drool over) the music does come through like a transistor radio at midnight while you're huddled under the sheets in fear of tomorrow's travails. The performance is standard typical early-Stones knockdown long before the myth and the chicness caught up with 'em when, at least in the minds of more than a few fanzine editors of the day, they were still punky enough and quite on par with the Stooges and Dolls. True the first tracks on side two were taken from the legit GOT LIVE IF YOU WANT IT EP and can be had in much better quality, but I think this time I will take quantity over quality if that means low-fidelity yet high energy music!


Anonymous said...

Not surprised that Clayson Troggs bio stinks, just like his Keith Richards, Keith Moon, Roy Orbison and Serge Gainsbourg bios stink. Where is Albert Goldman when you need him ):?

Christopher Stigliano said...

ADDENDUM...while looking through some CD stacks today I discovered that I actually have a legit version of Dave Burrell's ECHO in my collection! Gee, and I thought I knew all of my possession by heart!