Saturday, January 06, 2018

I can't believe it---here I made it through the first week of 2018 and nothing even remotely catastrophic has happened to me or to any of my precious possessions for that matter! Not that I'd expect anything particularly evil (remember that word?) to happen considering how I try to remain holed up in my once-fart-encrusted bedroom throughout the winter months (spent the autumn doing a major chipping the way, you need any fuel for your coal furnace?), but here it is the weekend and I am sad-to-say to the detriment of my enemies relatively safe and sound! And hey, I'm not even dreading the frigid months at all not only given the great music that has been heading my way these past few days/weeks/months/years but due to the fine reading material whether it be old fanzines, new fanzines, comic strip and book collections to keep me well occupied (actually, whatever flotsam might be found lying about). Bill's Christmas gifts are gonna be put to good use as the weeks roll on, what with the stack o' books he sent not forgetting an entire season of a radio classic that I really can't wait to pour myself into once the cold weather doldrums really start rampagin' my typically delicate system.
IN CASE YOU WANNA KNOW, here's what I've been listening to this week, not counting various items up for review in this or future posts! Can-MONSTER MOVIE, Creme Soda-TRICKY ZINGERS, Amon Duul-PARADIESWARTS DUUL, Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band-CLEAR SPOT,  the Electric Eels-THEIR ORGANIC MAJESTY'S REQUEST, Dick Hyman and Mary Mayo-MOON GAS and Syd Barrett-BARRETT. Choice reading material-Sandy Robertson's WHITE STUFF fanzine (the issue with the Henry Miller article) not to mention a spot skip reading of R. Meltzer's THE AESTHETICS OF ROCK (emphasis on the footnotes just like Eddie Flowers does!) which is perhaps the way it was meant to be read.

Records (and reading) like this remind me of those great days of record prowling, collecting and absorbing, when records, fanzines and choice magazine articles (mostly from CREEM but elsewhere as well) seemed less like collections of random soundspurts and more like neo-sacred texts or keys to temporary joy in otherwise drab lifestyles. Sheesh, I think I better stop glomming THE TEXTS OF FESTIVAL before I really go over the deep end what with all this rock as a secret code and pathway to being your own deca-neointellectual spirited self just like those doofs you've worshiped from afar!
Nice-a buncha-a records we gotta here this week, kid. Heapin' hunka thanks go to Bill Shute, Paul McGarry and P.D. Fadensonnen for the freebees, and of course-a me for-a workin' atta livin' to buy-a da rest!

Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention-BACON FAT CD (Keyhole Records, England)

Remember that dream I had about thumbing through a stack of Frank Zappa and/or Mothers albums that I had come across in the basement, looking upon loads of platters that sure seemed familiar but which in fact I never laid eyes upon before or since for that matter? Well, judging from the freaky cover seen on the left I wouldn't doubt one bit that BACON FAT was part of that stack, for this live platter (taken from an FM broadcast courtesy the CBC) is a definitely hotcha recording that I sure wish I had hold of during my teenbo days of record collecting had it only been flyin' aroun' back then!

It's taken from an all-cylinders on pump night where not only is the band playing good but Zappa's not in one of his arrogant moods where he makes the audience feel like a bunch of retardos. Rare numbers (even rare for the bootleg crowd!) and exemplary performances are in store, and the shebang even ends with a hot cover of "All Night Long" that makes Ruben and the Jets' version sound kinda feh! I'm sure glad Keyhole Records are releasing these rarities for the massholes amongst us, and if they can keep the high quality stuff up I'll be sure that 2018 will end up as one hot year for rock 'n roll, even if it is rock 'n roll of a decidedly vintage nature!
Tony Williams Lifetime-LIVE @ UNGANO'S, NYC 6/28/70

There's a new and legit (I think) Lifetime album featuring a classic live set from '69 comin' out shortly, so this particular set should prime me up for that in nothing flat. Sound quality (if you care) is audience cassette level, but the performance is crazed enough for any true believe to admire. Song selection is grand, made up of pastiches from familiar Lifetime album tracks with new arrangements and other aural trinkets tossed in making for something that would be unique to even those in on the game for a good fortysome years.

Actually this gig presented a better-than-average sampler of everything that fusion jazz was supposed to be all about until the likes of Return to Forever (I heard their debut on Polydor was hokay...was it???) started gaining the attention of the bowtie and tux jazz aficionados out there in schmooozeland. Enjoy this now, because in a good ten years it was all gonna be Stanley Clarke!
THE DICE CD-r burn (originally on Polygram Records)

Here's a mid-eighties rock group that didn't flop about like so many others during those decidedly anti-rock times. Toronto's Dice aren't anything to toss the cornflakes over, but they do have an early-seventies punk sort of rave about 'em that reminds me of all those great flea market finds I was afraid to spend fifty-cents over (money being a rare commodity those days). Not bad...reminds me of Mott the Hoople in parts so if you liked them who knows?
Henry Mancini-ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK LP FROM ORSON WELLES' TOUCH OF EVIL CD-r burn (originally on Challenge Records)

Eh, it's a soundtrack album of which you can find for a dime a dozen in any stack o' platters to be found at an antiques shop near you. It's nothing that really perks my pubes so-to-speak but I gotta admit that it sure sounds more boffo 'n whatever it is I hear passing for incidental sounds on whatever tee-vee program I might be trapped into watching these days. Did I ever tell you that my uncle from Aliquippa Pee-YAY grew up and about with Henry Mancini way back when? From what my departed uncle had told us lumpen kids, Mancini was a real sissy boy who used to carry his violin around in a case just like those Mama's Boys you used to see in THE LITTLE RASCALS. Haw, and that guy made more money in one day than my uncle saw in his entire life!
Fever Tree-ANOTHER TIME, ANOTHER PLACE CD-r burn (originally on Uni Records)

I must admit that I had earned some respect for Fever Tree after reading that they swiped their arrangement of "Hey Joe" from the Red Crayola (something which I probably mentioned in every other Fever Tree review of mine---why stop now?), but I was wary of just what the rest of their output sounded like! Judging from this platter not that bad really...yeah the slick big label production is in full force and what might have been straightforward late-period first generation psychedelic songs are testosteroned up, but I'll take these guys over the Jefferson Airplane any day. And hey, the Airplane never could work up the freaky quotient the way they could on a track like "Grand Candy Young Sweet" no matter how much Nick Tosches might doth protest! Best of all, this can get jazzy and classically tinged as all get-out, yet it doesn't make ya wanna puke even with the strains of "We Shall Overcome" opening the LP closer "Death is the Dancer". A nice surprise from a group that coulda made it bigger with a little push from the label, but then again what else is new?
JOSHUA CD-r burn (originally on Rockadelic Records)

For being one of those early-seventies peace 'n love platters, JOSHUA ain't that bad. Yeah you have to sit through the group's whole 1971 pacifist ploy which looks even sillier now than it did then (all that comes to mind is this old political cartoon I remembered where some guy in a chicken suit is holding a protest sign that reads "WAR IS IMMORAL") but some of the track do rock out and contain good melodies that hold my attention. It's nothing that makes me feel great like most of the first psychedelic era offerings extant can (this is more or less second generation psychedelic petering out into BLESS THE BEASTS AND CHILDREN sensitivity) but it holds up if only slightly. And thank your lucky stars that they didn't have a horn section or else this woulda come off even worse'n Mom's Apple Pie!
AFRTS CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

I'm still tryin' t' figure out the title of this one. Could it be a really simple "Jumble" of which the solution is "farts"??? Whatever it means, it just could be an obscure Cambodian term that loosely translates into "boy does this Cee-Dee make me wanna go to sleep!"

Actually the disque starts off fine if 'tard-y what with this radio quiz show entitled ARE YOU A GENIUS which I guess was broadcast to bolster the lower IQ'd World War II soldier's ego what with the rather simple questions that were being popped out to you the listener (though I shouldn't brag...I actually missed the one about how many pounds of milk goes into a pound of butter 'n the answer is "twenty-one" in case you're as doofus as me!).

INVITATION TO LEARNING is even more boring, a panel discussion group program dealing with philosophy the kind that Linus of PEANUTS fame used to watch when these things popped up on tee-vee. This kind of programming might have been good 'nuff for that egghead but please leave me outta it!

Closing it out are a buncha PSA and related made for the armed forces in Vietnam and with cornballus radio like this no wonder all those hopheads were deserting! The anti-drug ones sure had me nostalgic...for the days when all those hippies were droppin' like flies and I sure didn't feel sorry for 'em even though my teachers said we should because they're victims or something like that! I mean, if you gotta feel sorry for someone why not let it be for yourself!


Anonymous said...

Bill here from Gulf Greyhound Park in between races...AFRTS is the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service, source of all the items on the disc.Got to get back to the races...the beer is cheap,the catfish is gamy,and the drunken crowd is loving it. I see a great quinella opportunity in the fifth race. The dogs are on fire tonight!

Christopher Stigliano said...

You have to be kidding...I can't see any self respecting G.I. tuning into any of the programming featured on that disque!

Bill S. said...

Yes, agreed. Most old-time radio collectors know the AFRS (no "T" yet as that was the pre-TV age) because a lot of old time radio shows which don't survive in their original form do survive in the AFRS re-broadcast form (Johnny Dollar episodes, for instance), which are often slightly edited and maybe have military related PSA's. And of course the wonderful JUBILEE radio shows from the 40's had the best in jazz on them. But a lot of the stuff is dry and/or corny, like what was on this disc. There are a few websites which offer A LOT of AFRS/AFRTS broadcasts on MP3 for downloading (where I got that stuff), and it seems as though some veterans have a nostalgic desire to hear the old DJ's they heard during their service (based on the comments made on the sites), when they probably could not get any other form of radio entertainment. So now you've got a taste of the less-interesting side of AFRTS broadcasts. I'll send you some Jubilee shows to make up for it!