Saturday, August 29, 2020

Not much to blab about this time. Not due to lethargy or lack of inspiration or work doodies for that matter, but perhaps ALL THREE OF 'EM mooshed together. However, rather'n throw in one of my standby specials so's I could get more time to beef the thing up (and really, it is too soon for yet another "Fanzine Fanabla") I thought I'd toss at'cha what was already on hand and let you pick through the chunks like a crow goin' after smashed up road carrion. There are some tasty bits here I will admit, 'specially the new Stooges live platter which is bound to brighten up any true rockist's week.
In other news...HERO OF THE YEAR! Well, at least he is until someone out there tops him which I sincerely doubt will not happen for quite awhile. I'm talkin' 'bout Kyle Rittenhouse, the teenbo who had the testicles to mow down three of those precious antifa types who were runnin' after him with the intent to kill and got their just desserts many times over! Stories like this really do warm the cockles of my heart if only because for YEARS people who are supposed to know better 'n the rest of us keep telling us to restrain ourselves whether we're being robbed, beaten or killed lest we make the situation worse, and here comes an everyday sorta kid who proved all those experts wronger 'n wrong with his courage and abilities to take a bad situation and turn the tables on the aggressors. And the people he offed were the kind of miscreants who deserved it judging from their criminal raps---convicted kiddie diddler and violent felon types among their no-longer evolving police records thanks to the courage of Kyle! I sure like it when some guy outta nowhere makes his way into the spotlight and PROVES GANDHI WAS WRONG ALL ALONG!
Found this while looking for other things...thought it was good enough to share even if more than a few of
you regular readers will probably be offended due it hitting rather CLOSE TO HOME,
As usual, thanks go to Feeding Tube Records, Bill Shute, Paul McGarry and all of you bright and shining feces who tune in to this blog whenever a new post arises. Sometimes I think I couldn't do it without you, but then again I think maybe I can but I sure as heck don't wanna find out so keep on keepin' on as that old song said!

The Stooges-LIVE AT GOOSE LAKE, AUGUST 8TH, 1970 CD (Third Man Records)

Yep, this is the infamous Stooges gig that got Dave Alexander fired all done up in pretty good sound if that really did matter to you. It don't to me, in fact I played METALLIC KO just a few days back and still wonder how people could dismiss the rawness of this cassette-quality bootleg which brings out the better, more feral aspects of Stooge music (ditto for NIGHT OF THE IGUANA). Anyway, here's a prime example of the FUNHOUSE tour in all its glory with the noticable musical slip ups, a few tape gaffes here and there and an "LA Blues" that actually gets Archie Shepp r 'n b groove-like at the end, all done up with Iggy sounding as if there are more split ends on his nerves than on his hair. It sums up a whole lot more about what the sixties/seventies cusp meant to many-a-suburban slob than those Bobby Sherman records ya usedta cut outta the back of cereal boxes ever did!
Lloyd Thayer and Jerome Deupree-DUETS (Feeding Tube Records)

Drat it all if the hypesheet that came with this didn't hafta go mention the startling resemblance between these lap guitar/chaturangui ("a gorgeous 22-stringed instrument")/drum duets and those Sandy Bull/Billy Higgins "Blend" tracks that ended up on Bull's first two Vanguard spinners! Sheesh...that's the first thing that came into my mind when I spun this particular effort 'n I was gonna base my whole review around this mere fact! Oh well, maybe I still can...somehow. Let's just say that if you were one of those mid-sixties dorm room dwellers with a portable stereo and a handy connection and wasn't able to go home for the spring break boy, would you be in luck with this platter on your turntable and a haze of smoke around your head!

Thayer does his best to play that Bull-styled "world music" without succumbing to the gnu age tendencies of many a similar chord strummer, while that chaturangui thingie reminds me of one of those Indian music drone instruments...I think the veena if I'm not it bolsters up the guitar sound with a fine harp-like effect. Deupree doesn't quite measure up to Higgins' percussive standards but he does a better than you woulda thought job 'n I obviously ain't complainin'.

A surprisingly fresh effort here that I know won't get out to the masses like it should, but maybe the lucky enough ones to score this'll flash back to their own college days an' if so, lemme know where yer at so I can call the campus cops on ya!
Various Artists- PSYCHEDELIC ILLUSIONS : THE PSYCHEDELIC EXPERIENCE VOLUME 4 CD-r burn (originally on Mystic Records, Sweden)

Sometimes I wish the entire psychedelic phenomenon of the late-sixties had never reared its trippy head and at others I'm so gosh darn glad it did. This is one of those releases featuring the music where I'm sure glad the likes of Owsley were created inna first place, even if none of the psychedelic sounds here woulda snuggled in well during one of those Grateful Dead "Dark Star" marathons that really got into it after a good two hours or so. (An' yeah, I will admit that I like that triple set 'un where some guy took hundreds of live "Dark Star"s and edited them into a new and rather powerful effort...I can get this way at times even without the lure of hippie worldvisions or lysergic stimuli for that matter!)

Anyway, here are a buncha pretty good efforts ranging from garage band thumpers to commercial pop tossouts, all of 'em worth at least one entry into your psyche during this stay on earth. Nice but I woulda preferred this to have presented in that old Moxie flat sound /worn source vinyl fashion which affected me in a cheap record player stuck inna basement sorta way.
Edison Electric Band-BLESS YOU DR. WOODWARD CD-r burn (originally on Cotillion Records)

Typically flaccid mid-seventies bargain bin stuffer material that manages to take the typical youth kultur musical moves of 1970 (when this atrocity was made) and make 'em sound even more tepid. The hippydippy name of these guys had me expectin' some late-sixties psychedelic swirls here and there but the Edison guys so nothin' but dish out the expected proto-yacht, blooze and rock jamz a whole lot worse'n even them hippies livin' in that old barn you weren't allowed to look at did. I guess back then just about everybody coulda gotten signed which leads to the question...why didn't the Magic Tramps?
The Rich Kids-BURNING SOUNDS CD-r burn (originally on Revola Records)

Hmm, pretty pow'rfull late-seventies English rock 'n roll best known for the bass work of one Glen Matlock, a person who quite a few people seem to hate for one strange reason or another. Usually this breed of power-pop usually doesn't get much spin-time on the ol' BLOG TO COMM turntable but man, it sure does make for a great change from the usual supermarket jive that gets passed off as new and daring in these post-teenage consciousness days. Boy will this bring back memories of those kids razzin' ya for liking that insidious punk rock music ('n I should know!).
Various Artists-TROPICANA SHANGHAI HORNET CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

A sorta mid-tempo "Virtual Floor Sweeping" here with the expected gunk 'n junk one would expect Bill to shovel my way. Good stuff here too from a version of the old GREEN HORNET tee-vee show theme to some old radio ads and surfoid paens to tires. Of course if you miss watching Sammy Davis Jr. singing "Can't Take My Eye(s) Off Of You" on a variety of mid-seventies talk shows you can hear Pepe Jaramillo Latinize it for your dining and dancing pleasure. Or for that matter an unknown act do their faithful version of the Bell Notes' "I've Had It"! Be on the lookout for a rare radio clip featuring future radio legend John Peel back when he was John Ravenscroft on KOMA plugging the likes of Snotty and the Nose Pickers!
Perhaps some of you readers are wond'rin' why I never received any really heartfelt accolades from the rock screeding set, no awards to proudly place upon my mantle or plaques to hang upon my fart-encrusted walls. Well, buy a few of these BLACK TO COMM back issues and read for yourself why I was voted worst rock writer a good twennysome years inna row! Somehow I believe the tallies were rigged by that's besides the point...

Thursday, August 27, 2020


Wow, two of tee-vee's more famous parents together in this late-forties cheapie that's bound to keep you from goin' to the bathroom, at least in between the used car commercials and the station sign-off. And hey, what can you say about yet another one of those late-forties "film noir" as the fru fru critics like to call 'em mooms starring June Lockhart as a supposedly deceased woman who attends her own funeral only to pop up directly after in order to find out not only who it was who was out to off her but who the dame that got burnt to a crisp in her horse stable really was.

Flub-a-dub actor Mark Daniels plays the husband we're all led to think tried to off her, while none other'n Beaver's dad Hugh Beaumont's the friendly fambly lawyer trying to sort everything out along with Lockhart. There are sure a lotta suspects in this case as well as a question as to who the one who actually slugged the victim on the noggin then burned down the stable to make it all look like an accident really was. The young cyster who was cheated out of her inheritance seems like a pretty good suspect, as does her boyfriend the not-so-bright prizefighter, or was it the "other woman" that was plotting with the boxer or even a few more people brought to light in a series of flashbacks. Whatever the case you too will be straining your brain trying to figure out exactly what did happen that fateful night and just how many people really could have done the nasty deed and for whatever reasons that might suddenly crop up! Kinda felt like Gilligan in that one episode about the murder where just about everyone on the island had a reason for killing that guy with a spear gun!

Don't wanna give too much away, but fans of LEAVE IT TO BEAVER will not exactly cozy up to the Beaumont character who plays it 180 degrees differently than his Ward Cleaver persona. All I gotta say is that if Eddie Haskell ever found out boy would Wally and the Beav have been razzed from here to Kingdom Come!

Tuesday, August 25, 2020


Comic books about auto racing shouldn’t work, but the geniuses at Charlton Comics made them work, and had multiple hot-rod comics running and selling for many years. This particular title ran for 120 issues, from 1951 through 1973. The first 88 issues, pre-1968, are public domain and available online at Comic Book Plus, so you can actually read the issue I’m discussing today without having to find an original.

I picked up this particular issue some time in the early 1970’s at a junk store on the north side of Golden, Colorado, a place that looked like it might have been a storehouse for agricultural supplies at one time, but had been turned into a repository for discarded and unwanted items of all kinds, for sale cheap. In these pre-Ebay, pre-internet days, junk stores priced things to sell. The formula for pricing probably went something like “what’s the highest price I can charge and still move this item in 6 weeks?” For a comic book like this, a dime was the cost. I probably went across the street to Dairy Queen after this comic purchase and bought a 25-cent cone (see pic), and then went to the city park, ate my cone and read my hot rod comic book twice. From my vantage point in the park, if I looked north, I saw route 93, the road to Boulder. Although there were a lot of good things about Boulder, I tended to identify it with Grateful Dead fans who hated The Standells (at that time, I dressed as if I was auditioning for the front cover of the DIRTY WATER album on Tower) or The Knickerbockers, hated drive-in horror films, looked down on meat-eaters, and needed to use deodorant more often and not wear the same T-shirt for four days….the kind of people I hoped someone would burn in a drug-deal….after all, they probably didn’t work themselves for the money anyway! Looking southeast, I’d see the massive Coors Brewery, the main employer in the town. A number of my friends’ parents worked there (mine did not), and a number of kids from Golden High School, my classmates, would wind up working there, back when one could get a full-time job with benefits and security right out of highschool if you were willing to work hard and become part of the company team. Golden always smelled like beer, though you didn’t notice it when you lived there. The town was in a valley between two mountain ranges, and the scent of hops and grain hung over everything like fog in some 1940’s movie version of Victorian London. When you left for the day to go down to Denver, and then came back to Golden in the evening, you’d smell it when you entered the valley, and if you can imagine a massive twenty-thousand-gallon vat of beer left open to waft across town, that’s what the town smelled like, although as I said, when you lived there, it was the norm and you didn’t notice it. Any readers who’ve ever lived near a slaughterhouse or a paper mill know what I’m talking about—like a lot of things in life, you get acclimated to it and don’t notice it the way an outsider would, though as a beer-drinker, I found the presence of a weighty beer-scent, so strong you could taste it, in the atmosphere at all times to be a good and positive thing. This was during the days when Coors beer was not distributed nationally, and I can remember out-of-state relatives or family friends, like my father’s old Navy shipmates, coming to visit us and filling their trunks with cases of Coors to take back home to whatever state they were from.

An ice-cream cone and a used hot-rod comic book was heaven in my 9th grade world. Charlton hot-rod comics always seemed rooted, no matter what date they were from, in some lost civilization where 1963-era Rick Nelson, in a cardigan sweater and with college pennants on the wood-paneled rec-room wall, was performing, where the malt-shop was serving up burgers and cherry colas and you’d expect the Bowery Boys to barge in at any moment, where the album to own was JERK & TWINE TIME by THE KNICKERBOCKERS, and where the drive-in was showing the 1966 spy-hotrod comedy OUT OF SIGHT, which incidentally featured The Knickerbockers (see movie poster). With heroes with generic names like Ken King and Clint Curtis, HOT RODS AND RACING CARS and its ilk existed at some racetrack right outside Archie and Jughead’s Riverdale (where Eisenhower is still President, not the new revisionist Riverdale), where people would go on Friday and Saturday night because it was there, it was inexpensive, and there was nothing better to do. And so much of what I’ve enjoyed throughout my life has been based on those standards: it’s there, it’s inexpensive, and there’s nothing better to do. Even today, with me reading this comic book I bought 45+ years ago and devoting an hour or two of my life in 2020 to something anyone else would have thrown away decades ago if they’d even bothered to ever pick it up in the first place, I’m still following that formula.

Most of this issue is written and drawn by Jack Keller, and he should get some kind of award for making car racing, and the world around hotrods, come alive on the comics page. The first story deals with a practical joker who baits Clint and his sidekick Alex a number of times with car-related practical jokes but then gets paid back at the end. The second story has Ken King in a mountain road-race in a place called TARGA FLORIO, with ten laps of 45 miles each with more than 700 curves. The third story BANZAI RUN (see pic) has Clint in the world of dragsters, and you can smell the smoke, the burning oil, and the burning rubber---all that’s needed is some stinging reverbed instrumental from The Astronauts (my fellow Colorado boys) as a soundtrack. Keller manages to take action drawings, with smoke and jagged angles and suggestions of speed and wind in our faces, mixed with drama and dialogue sequences that move the story and pull the reader along, and chop it together into 5-7 page chunks that have the feel of the racing world while keeping things rooted in a teenage environment (I’d say most of the characters are only a few years out of high school) that would resonate with the readership. The book concludes with a “Great Moments In Racing History” (not written or drawn by Keller, but still dripping with action and atmosphere) piece on SEBRING ’65, linking everything to the REAL world of auto racing.

All that for a dime (or 12 cents if you’d gotten it new in 1966), and it’s still working its magic in a new century. Yes, my friends, what they used to say at the top of the comicbook page is as true today as it was back in the 60’s and 70’s: CHARLTON COMICS GIVE YOU MORE!

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Hope your rockist week has gone on swimmingly well. Mine has, what with my (in this case ever-shrinking) free time being filled up with more'n my share of heavy doody rock reading and music listening, some of which you might even read about amidst the garble printed below! I dunno about you, but when I jettison the weak tea-powered music and hackathon writing outta my system I feels oh-so-good, and the more hours I spend thumbing through an old comic book (your best entertainment value!) or fanzine while listening to Suicide (the classic, original stuff) or those madrigal-like early Velvet Underground demos on the bedside boom box the happier I feel. Call me an old fuddy-duddy for bein' like this, but it's the gosh-darned TRUTH and why should I be ashamed about it like one would be about admitting that HAZEL is their favorite classic-era tee-vee show!
In case yer still tuned in, I will update ya on my ROCKSBACKPAGES rompin' 'n copyin' because in a thousand years someone will find this quite important. Right now I'm catching a few things that slipped by here/there and have finished up copying everything I didn't have (and more!) from the infamous Mark Shipper of FLASH! and PAPERBACK WRITER fame. Also saved for posterity (and maybe my own posterior if there ever is a toilet paper shortage) a few interesting no wave-related items including a James Chance interview from THE NEW YORK ROCKER that really kicks me into gear considerin' what a poor subject matter the famed saxophonist makes with his droll and downright nasty responses! And yeah, I even got hold of all of the Stephen M. H. Braitman reviews if only because of his writeup of Chrome's HALF MACHINE LIP MOVES in BOMP!, even if the material presented here is taken from some late-sixties Van Nuys newspaper where the man spends his time blabbing about the likes of Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell. Gettin' down to the wire with these, so whatever ya do DON'T DISTURB ME WITH YOUR IDLE PROBLEMS while I try to loot all I can from this site!
Nice bunch we got here, and thanks to Bill, Paul, Feeding Tube and Hozac for their contributions to THE CAUSE. Might be gettin' some even more special goodies inna upcoming weeks so if I do make sure you keep your peepers peeled just as if you were starrin' in UN CHIEN ANDALOU!

The Eddie Criss Group-UNDERTAKER LP (Hozac Records)

Sheesh whaddaya know...yet another over four-decades-old record that was originally on David Peel's Orange label (reissued by the fine folk at Hozac) that I never even knew existed! Or if I had I had forgotten given my sieve-like memory but sheesh, why wasn't I payin' attention...after all, this Criss guy cooks on alla these high-powered tracks (think a cross between the Dolls and Aerosmith with some Backstreet Boys beat tossed in) with the fantastic lead guitar of WAYNE KRAMER!!!! keeping this from turning into a total obscurity in your mind. This is what I think about when such over-played terms as hard rock or heavy metal get tossed at me by unmistakable assholes who think they know it all. Best track - "Killer" which is a keen rewrite of "The In Crowd" done up for late-seventies New York  rock 'n roll tastes, and you may even like it too!
14th Wish-"14th Wish"/"I Gotta Get Rid of You" 45 rpm (Hozac Records)

Hmmmm....another Orange Records release I never knew about, this time from a sneaky li'l trio that calls themselves 14th Wish, whadevva that means! But who cares, since this rec's a fine buzzer of a low-fi piece of rock 'n roll glory, the kind that has filled up many a promo packet throughout the eighties that were just brimmin' full of local groups that had released some mighty good records but since this was the eighties who in the music biz really cared? The record that your jerkoff kid brother coulda made which begs the question...why didn't he?
Matt Sowell-ORGANIZE OR DIE LP (Feeding Tube Records)

When I saw the cover of this 'un I really thought it was gonna be a turdburger par excellence, a throwback to a whole buncha those seventies "topical" singer/songwriter spinners whose relevancy had a lifespan of an original idea on this blog. Well CALL ME A BETTER MAN THAN YOU FOR SAYING THAT I WAS "WRONG", for ORGANIZE OR DIE is a real good platter if only because it's all instrumental and you can woosh the typical pinko message away from the actual work if you do wish to do so. Sowell handles his steel strings as well as many of you favorite sixties acoustic players (even the big guys like Fahey!), weaving melodies that are so moving that you can even sniffle a bit whilst overcome by the beauty of it all. Good enough introspection w/o making you wanna revert to some imaginary hippoid past and go out 'n press leaves in between your Peter Pauper Press books.
WET NURSE CD (band's own label)

First heard about these guys back when I would cruise the CBGB website checking out what was goin' on at the place whilst they were in their death throes. Along the way I discovered that Wet Nurse were a heavy metal group, and from the description on their own site I got the impression that these guys woulda been playing HM in that early-seventies sorta thud style that seems so appealing a good fifty years after them first thuds were laid down. Not quite---with Martin Bisi behind the boards you can bet that Wet Nurse are of the post-seventies hard thrash style that seemed just as popular with the Metallica freaks of the eighties as Grand Funk 8-tracks were with the box boy stoners of the previous decade. Nice enough growl here, some even of a melodic variety, tho it sure ain't enough to make me dig out any of my old Helmet platters.
The Silver Apples-SILVER APPLES CD, CONTACT CD (Rotorelief Records)

Got these even tho I have not only the original pressings but this early-90s reissue combining both on one juicy platter. However, given how it's almost three decades down the ol' poop chute I'm sure glad that both of these crucial platters have finally been awarded the Royal Carpet Treatment complete with alla that quality people like us need and crave now that the story has been told and these guys are a mystery no more!

Well, not exactly. These very recent (last year!) Cee-Dees do have rather nice elongated covers 'n all, but NO INTERESTING NOTES OR PIC/AD REPRODUCTIONS ARE TO BE FOUND ANYWHERE IN THE PACKAGE! (Not only that, but the credits have mistakenly been switched!) 'n man, I am sorta peeved since I sure coulda used something new in the way of snaps 'n info to tingle my senses at a time when they seem number 'n a extraction-anticipating denture candidate's gums. But so what, since I got the music and lemme tell you that both of these Silver Apples platters sure hold up swell not only with their proto-synthesizer wails that predate many of your favorite noisemongers of the seventies, but with that late-sixties THUNK! which came off so PURIFYING in the light of some of the things that were goin' on at the time. And if you do remember, a whole lotta them days weren't really good enough to be remembered this far down the line even if by today's standards it all might as well be the Troggs!

It's up to you. If you have the originals these might be way redundant but eh. I like supporting my fave groups ANY WAY I CAN! Maybe this purchase will put a few coppers into the purses of all those who sure didn't get enough filthy lucre for their efforts first time around, ifyaknowaddamean...
Sadistic Mika Band-1974 ONE STOP FESTIVAL CD (DIW Records, Japan)

Japan's contribution to the mid-seventies art/glam sound live and judo-choppin' the way you woulda expected! Too bad these guys (and gal) didn't capture the imaginations of more'n just a few import bin hoppers during them day because this really does hold up with the best of the chic sleaze that was goin' on at the time. Smart deca-pop with the English and Amerigan influences that you like crammed in for good measure. If Roxy Music were a Bentley and Sparks a Lincoln, the Sadistic Mika Band would be a 1965 Mitsubishi Debonair and that ain't no used car talk. bub!
Fire Dept.-FLAME FROM THE FEN 2 CD-r burn set (originally on Damaged Goods Records, England)

Double disque roundup of everything this early-eighties English group recorded. Neo-revival without the cheeky pose that works some of the time and doesn't quite "hit" the other, but it sure sounds a whole lot smoother'n a good load of the gunk that was comin' out durin' those sad 'n sorry days. Even when it ain't clickin' it's still a worthwhile investment if you're a fan of that Milkshakes/Headcoats brand of rock 'n roll, though I gotta say that sittin' through over two-and-a-half hours of this was a rather overbearing task. Try the thing piecemeal an' it just might do its work on ya.
Various Artists-THE LONG WALK OF DIRTY DAN CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Bill really knows how to toss a salad! A musical one that is and tosses he does on this effort which has a good share of instrumental wildness, olde tyme hokeyness, blues, punk and punque for that matter. Even some United Nations mix and match that doesn't get all cultural on ya too! Personal fave of this batch is the Ventures version of "Wild Thing" with a bad Peter Lorre imitation that's even worse than mine! My Lorre impression, not my Ventures one. So good that even the more dippoid crooners that Bill deemed worth of my ears don't get too much inna way!
You're alone with your gal and nature is beginning to take its course. But do you have a handy back issue of BLACK TO COMM ready for those intimate moments? Make sure that you and your loved one are safe (from the dangers of unprotected rock reading) and have some of these on hand for that special, intimate time.

Thursday, August 20, 2020


Mebbe I should get all hissy fitty o'er the fact that the guys behind this 'un STOLE the idea for their cover from the third issue of my own crudzine but eh, I'll let 'em off the hook at least this once.

You could call this is "a very special episode of UGLY THINGS" for the mag's virtual mascot and dare-I-even-say "Alfred E. Neuman", none o ther than former Pretty Things singer Phil May, has passed on to hopefully bigger and better things and this issue is whatcha'd call a tribute to the man. And a well-deserved one too what with alla the intimate detail and discographical detail that went into this. As far as send-offs go I'd rate this with a top of the notch funeral complete with old ladies wailing away and a mahogany casket 'stead of the trash can and dump truck treatment I'm gonna get because hey, why dump money into a funeral when I can use all that money to buy records, as if I'm even gonna know (or care) what they do with my corpse once I hit the carbon cycle!

Once you get your fill (and more!) of the May tributes you could call this the "Scientology" edition of UGLY THINGS. There's quite a bit on that L. Ron Hubbard brainstorm here from the story on People! to the plethora of tales spun about Gabor Szabo (in UGLY THINGS??? Why not!) who I guess was lured into the famed cult thanks to big league spokesman and jazz biggie Chick Corea, which to me would be one great reason to run away from it as fast as I could!

Of course there's more from a Hasil Adkins piece which zones me back to the great Adkins flurry of information ever since the folk at KICKS exhumed his career way back when to the Elektras of "Dirty Old Man" fame and of course the ever piddling array of record, book and Dee-Vee-Dee reviews which make me so sad that these things ain't comin' out as fast as they usedta. But eh, one of these days alla those glitzoid sissy popturds you see today'll be sayin' THE SAME THING about their music's loss of popularity so maybe we'll get our vengeance even if it is from a six-foot-under standpoint!

Coulda used more Bill Shute as usual but maybe I should be satisfied that he's being published at all!

Tuesday, August 18, 2020


A companion piece to Drummond's earlier Elevators history EYE MIND, A VISUAL HISTORY recycles whole chunks of that book (including the incident where Roky informed Clementine Hall that Russians were sending messages through his teeth to kill Jackie Kennedy before remarking "You know Clementine, you look like Jackie!") but I guess flashbacks are apropos when the subject is the Elevators.

There are a wealth of previously unseen photos of the band in action, most taken by teenage fans who still have the wherewithal to point the camera at the stage after their Pepsi was spiked with something other than aspirin.

Check out the TV GUIDE listings from when the band was on the boob tube, Hey, you could have watched HOPPITY HOOPER right before they played on AMERICAN BANDSTAND!

The book closes with some pics of the reformed band at the Levitation Fest in 2015 as they blaze into the psychedelic sunset, reminding us all of what could have been had the Austin Police Department been defunded in 1966!

Saturday, August 15, 2020

And so we bleat again! I've got to admit that it's been a pretty decent week for me, what with me passing a few medical tests and doctor appointments with somewhat flying colors (much to your chagrin, I know) to the arrival of some WONDERFUL AND LIFE-REAFFIRMING MUSIC (and reading) into my otherwise staid and sordid life. Of course I'm gonna tell ya ALL about it...I mean, after all this time you don't realize that I remain that suburban slob spiritual turdler who HAS to be at the center of attention even to the point where mom 'n pop 'r gonna stop the proceedings with a few  swift slaps to my posterior?
As far as the progress regarding my ROCKSBACKPAGES contract go, right now (at this very moment!) I am copying down for future reference everything on there that not only BACK DOOR MAN co-founder and noted scribe in his own right DON WALLER (bless his soul!) has available for consumption but the work of Waller's BDM co-hort PHAST PHREDDIE PATTERSON not to mention the better (mostly non-reggae) material from Vivien Goldman from her SOUNDS days inna late-seventies. I'm even copying the stuff regarding music I probably would not care to  read about let alone  listen to, but glomming ideas about music from such from such top notchers really makes me wish I had the expansive tastes and knowledge about music (pop or otherwise) in general that they had even if I tend to think that acts like Chic and ABC not to mention those Grrrrrl types (in Goldman's case) are best left for the losers in life among us ('n NO WISE CRACKS ALLOWED!). Still, I'd rather read any of these writers doing the eclectic bit than I would Chuck Eddy who might have had wobbly tastes, but an even wobblier personality when it came to dealing with me. Sheesh, I must bring out the worst in people without even trying (a good trait if true!).
Haven't had many rock 'n roll-oriented dreams to relate to you all, but the one where I was in Cleveland at some venue (more or less akin to a small gymnasium with tables set up) in the audience with PETER LAUGHNER listening to a band perform his Friction material as a "tribute" sure stands out as one to keep in my mind! Of course I was surprised when I saw the group featuring like three violins doing "Old Song Re Sung" but hey, these dreams sure do being out small details that a wide awake mind would never think of!
IMPORTANT FANZINE READING NEWS! While creepin' through the internet I have discovered that the ENTIRE run of THE SHAKIN' STREET GAZETTE (including the early inserts for the local Buffalo State paper THE STRAIT) is now available online! NOW's the time to fill up all of those blank your mind that is.
I caught this one via BLAZING CAT FUR and thought you'd also get a kick outta it.  The ultimate spoof of "black grievance porn" extant if you ask me, 'n is that thee famed Johnny Brown playing the aged astronaut??? Didn't even know he was still up and about! If you can't laugh at this then you deserve late night television!

'n now for the credits. This post was written by me, with help from the likes of Bill Shute and Paul McGarry who contributed burnt items, not to mention Feeding Tube Records, Guerrsen Records and "Stereo" Records who brought some pretty good hard copy to my attention. The rest was gathered up by my own hard sweat'n toil, for what little that was worth!

Two Much-THE ABSTRACT HORSE LP (Feeding Tube Records)

Here's one of those neat basement rock recordings that's getting released in the here and now only because one of the members (drummer Robin Amos) went on to "better things", mainly the Boston group the Girls! You remember them (I think), they were the ones who had the honor of being the only non-Ohio act to record for Pere Ubu's Hearthan label (that I know of, that is!). Face it, if Amos had been a nobody this would have remained in the closet next to many a Monopoly game along just like a thousand other similar efforts, but it's out and thank goodness it's a pretty good rocker that thrills this jaded fanabla!

Even more basic than many a similar minded home-recorded effort from Jack Starr to the Rockin' Blewz, Amos pounds some pretty good drums while guitarist and vocalist John Chadwick strums some at times out-of-kilter guitar while singing even more out-of-kilter vocals. Recorded on a reel-to-reel in the group's communal living room by Amos' dad, this does say more about the state of late-sixties teenage ranch house existence than THE BRADY BUNCH ever could! A total winner, sorta like what the Smashchords woulda sounded like if only done up a good ten or so earlier!
Sensor/Spook-COLLAPSE & RISE AT THE AIR MASS cassette ("Stereo" Records, France)

This tape is actually Gregory Raimo of Hopital de la Concepcion fame on microphone feedback and stylophone making more of that post-psychedelic music that seems to defy the current trend towards dippyness that has overtaken a good portion of the musical scene no matter where you look. Feedback and ghostly melodies remind me of everything from a missing Silver Apples track to Nurse With Wound. Ethereal sounds that you can really lose yourself in which attain a sort of holy feeling as if you are actually being visited by an apparition and not necessarily a good one. Those of you who are still awash in late-seventies theories of "minimalism" might appreciate this, and even ignorant special needs slobs like myself will enjoy the spacial nature as well.
Bomis Prendin-CLEAR MEMORY CD (Guerssen/Mental Experience Records, Spain)

Yep, it's the same cadre that gave us everything from the PHANTOM LIMB flexi to the Titfield Thunderbolt doing their OP-minded music on a limited (fifty only!) cassette back 1984 way. Only now it's 2020 and you can now have a copy to hold in your sweaty mitts pressed up as a Cee-Dee! Not as "dense" as PHANTOM LIMB and perhaps dated because of the use of casiokeyboards, but still an electro-rock wowzer with the distorto repeato-riff madness that usually makes these kinda recordings all the better. Sorta like a nicer version of Throbbing Gristle with some mid-seventies Can (and at times early-eighties funk punk) mixed in. Add some Ralph Records references tossed in for good measure. Although I would have loathed the thing back when it came out, nowadays it does remind me of what those experimental college kid things sounded like at least before it all went down the tubes.
Attrix-"Lost Lenore"/"Hard Times" 45 rpm single (Munster Records, Spain)

There are so many of these seventies rarities just waiting to be discovered, and when ya get one like this boy is it time to flip out jes' like I 'm doin' with this wowzer! Brighton's Attrix hearken back to the more straight-ahead rock groups of the late-sixties/early-seventies on their sole effort with both sides just leavin' the listener beggin' for more what with the repeato-riff drive that will flash you back to many a seventies-era fave that got lost inna shuffle just like these guys did. Upon first spin one group that initially sprang to mind were the obscure acetate wonders the Velvet Frogs who were treadin' the same musical realms a good decade earlier and also got wooshed away for all their efforts. Hope that the eventual archival dig surrounding these guys proves to be quite fruitful.
The Gay Intruders-"In The Race"/"It's Not Today" 45  rpm single (Munster Records, Spain)

Hold on precious, the name has nothing to do with unicorns and rainbows because these guys were around long before you creeps co-opted the "gay" tag for good! Naw, these Gay Intruders were all rather healthy middle-Amerigan kids who recorded this rather spiffy Bo Diddley beat track way back in '66, all kept under the covers until only now which is kind of a shame but better now than in the future when we don't have any ears to hear the thing. You can bet it's just as powerful as all those other Diddley-cum-Stones records that have been comped for the last thirtysome years, and perhaps even better because they do seem even more"aw shucks" about it than usual. The flip's an even neater surprise, a standard six-oh stomper that was left unfinished back during them days only to be spiffied up for release now an' it's done so good that you never woulda known it! THE MODERN DAY SUBURBAN SLOB REFUSES TO DIE!
Van Der Graaf Generator-THE AEROSOL GREY MACHINE LP (Mercury Records)

Curiosity had me dishing out actual lucre for this '69 progressive rock "classic" featuring Peter Hammill, who did a way better job of tingling my tootsies on NADIR'S BIG CHANCE (one of those "I'm not supposed to like it but everybody seems to an' I don't wanna be left out" classics). Not that AEROSOL is a turdburger by any stretch of the imagination, but each and every cut sounds like a song just waiting to pop its kernel only to flub-a-dub to the point where the music just wooshes right by ya without leaving any sort of imprint you'd care to have left on your psyche. I somehow get the feeling that the initial efforts from fellow (and oft-compared to) prog brethren Genesis would sound dazzling in comparison. Not that I'm anxious to find out...
THE ONES CD-r burn (originally on Rerun Records)

Might-tee good heavy metal influenced olde tyme punk rock from this Milwaukee band who, as far as I can tell, have no connections to any other groups on this planet calling themselves "The Ones". At times the straight ahead Ramones riffs give way to the standard "Communication Breakdown" swipes heard so often in punk rock, perhaps "dating" the entire proceedings but then again I wouldn't mind re-living the seventies THE RIGHT WAY. Raw and primal demo-quality recordings that will thankfully remind you that there was a good side to seventies music despite what a whole slew of REVISIONISTS'll tell you over and over again.
Hans Kollar Free Sounds-PHOENIX CD-r burn (originally on MPS Records, Germany)

I was thinking that the free sound here was gonna be even freer than what transpired within these "grooves", but the Hans Kollar Free Sounds ensemble are about as steady as most of the other European experimental jazz acts that were comin' outta Europe back inna late-sixties and early-seventies. There's kind of an early ECM cleanliness to this that doesn't ruin the proceedings one bit, tho you do get the idea that this would have sounded way more in-tune with your own sense of free sound splat had PHOENIX been performed by some heavy duty freedom players 'stead of these Continental latch-ons. Good 'nuff for a quick jazz fix to jangle your already too calmed down nerves.
Various Artists-TENDER MINOR LIBERTY TOOT CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Listening to a Bill Shute burn is akin to opening up a box on Christmas Day knowin' that whatever's in it, you're gonna have a hard time returnin' it tomorrow! All funnin' aside, this is another wonder from the man who invented the word what with the usual splurt of things from Christmas radio jinglies to more off-key local kids trying to ape the Beatles' popularity (and gash quotient) to Otis Redding from that oft-milked Monterrey album. Sure some of it drags more than a pair of NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC titties onna ground (that "Perversion Waves" thing is about as perverted as a MISTER ROGERS special!), but there's more'n just a li'l fun and jamz to keep me goin' through the day from kitchy instrumental fun 'n heavy rock of a half-century vintage to low-rung-on-the-totem-pole avgarde experiments, in here. Well, at least  I didn't get any socks.
BACK ISSUES PLUG TIME! Need some real rock reading in your system to soothe those pent up frustrations of having to live in a world with Miley Cyrus? Why not try some of these old BLACK TO COMMs to help get you over the mass o' misery we call EVERYDAY LIVING? Just click on the link and get those horrible memories of having to read ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY in the waiting room outta your already fetid system!

Thursday, August 13, 2020


Not bad (yet not quite up to snuff) postwar drama that woulda been custom made for those long-gone late-late show viewings. Y'know, the ones that always seemed to bring a li'l dark mystery into your life whenever ennui-filled you were up watching these old and forgotten flicks inna middle of the night.

Starts off pretty fair tho with perennial gosh-it-all youth Robert Cummings as a down-on-his-luck WW II vet who lucks into a job as a Miami gangster's chauffeur, naturally getting into deep doo-doo when he falls for the boss's innocent enough yet kinda blandoid wife (played by Michele Morgan) who wants to sneak away with Cummings on a boat to Havana. Of course Our Hero has to deal with the gangster hubby (played by Steve "Rough Stuff" Cochran) not to mention sidekick Peter Lorre who's as sinister as he always was in these low-fi crankouts as if the guy would ever be contracted to play Jolly Ollie Orange.

The plot sounds pretty good as in one of those old TV GUIDE descriptions, but kinda gets wobbly what with a good part of the action carrying the main weight of the film turning out to be a DREAM SEQUENCE and then starting all over again after a good forty-five minutes or so of us all being led astray by a pretty decent mystery! And yeah, you'll probably be as confused by it all when all of a sudden you see Cummings all washed out in a cheap hotel room gulping down pills after all had been said and done giving an old Army officer a call before the plot gets back into gear, all done in a way that makes a good portion of this film totally meaningless! Your mind will be goin' into reverse just like mine what with this interesting development suddenly being injected into the flick!

But still, THE CHASE has some good scenes like the one where the limo Cummings is driving is suddenly accelerated thanks to a secret foot control in the back, or another where the owner of some ships who would not sell is locked in a wine cellar and eaten alive by Cochran's pooch. So it ain't a total loss, but I can just see yer mother watching this on the weekend afternoon moom pitcher slots of the sixties and seventies goin' "Wha' tha' fa' wa' that?????" when the plot takes that nasty turn nobody was expectin'!

Tuesday, August 11, 2020


This handsome 290-page paperback combines two earlier Gwandanaland collections, each documenting the four-issue run of a grim, violent Avon crime comic book: POLICE LINE-UP ran four issues from August 1951 through July 1952, while GANGSTERS & GUN MOLLS ran four issues from September 1951 through June 1952. Any issue of either goes for big bucks nowadays, and with good reason….this is about as hard-hitting and brutal as crime comics got. Some punk goes on a crime spree, killing random people for a quick score, or because he didn’t like their look, or because he’s working his way up the crime totem-pole and wants to show his boss he doesn’t mess around and the boss should fear him. He winds up getting blown away by the police, or caught and sent to the chair.

GANGSTERS & GUN MOLLS uses a lot of actual known criminals, telling their stories in over-the-top, highlights-only five to eight page blasts that don’t stop to take a breath. For instance, here’s the come-on line for JUANITA PEREZ, THE GYPSY KILLER! :”Gypsy thief, embezzling clerk, dance hall girl, gun-toting gang lookout, dope pusher, corrupt ward assistant, underworld queen—the career of this thrill-crazed murderess seems incredible.” What fan of low-budget crime films and pulp crime magazines and Mike Hammer novels could NOT plunk down his ten cents on the drug-store counter for a comic book like this.

POLICE LINE-UP is even better, if that’s possible. Let’s start with the first issue. THE LINEUP tells the story of Andy “Squint” Sheridan, who is so mean his parents try to turn him in when he’s 12. By that time, he’d already got the “squint” from throwing lye in the faces of his crime victims and getting a bit of it in one of his own eyes (and when looking up his true story online, I see that’s not at all how he got the eye damage, but it makes for a much better sensationalized experience than the reality would). It’s one brutal killing after another here, with an occasional short prison term spreading the crime spree over multiple years. His end? Death row. The story is told in such a way that we never see the actual squint and a clear view of Sheridan’s face until the final panels of the comic—it’s always hidden by cigarette smoke, or he’s at an angle where it’s not seen, or someone’s shoulder or arm is in the way. It’s very effective storytelling, the kind you’d get in some late 40’s bottom-of-the-bill Eagle-Lion crime programmer that someone who’d buy this comic book would love. Next is KILLER, the story of Wally Marvin, church-going Midwestern boy who wants the finer things in life and to impress his girlfriend. He blows away various local merchants and thinks he’s clever by wearing borrowed suits for each one. His girlfriend is surprised how quickly he has a down payment for a place to live, a car, etc. In the final scene, they are strapping him into the chair at the state prison. Next is IRENE SCHROEDER, also known as the Keystone Hellcat. With her clinging and easily-influenced boyfriend Glen, she began her crime spree in Western PA, north of Pittsburgh and south of the palatial BTC offices in Sharon/Hermitage (she’d earlier been a waitress in Wheeling, West Virginia, and always swears she’ll never work in a hash-house again!). In the comic book, she’s hanged in some western state, but in real life, she was the first woman to be electrocuted in the state of PA, wearing (according to online sources) “a gray dress of imitation silk with white collars and cuffs, beige silk stockings and black satin slippers" as she was strapped into the chair. And we’re not even halfway through issue 1 of POLICE LINE-UP yet!

The original pages of these rare and expensive comics are well-transferred by Gwandanaland, with none of the computer re-coloring you see in more highbrow reprints. A case can be made for that technique—I adore my computer-recolored PHANTOM and TARZAN hardback archival reprints—but somehow the fading of the original comics, often going a bit into a pinkish red or a greenish yellow, totally fits the grimy and unpleasant stories being told. These are the kind of comic books that led to the moralists’ shrill outcry against comics and eventually the dreaded Comics Code Authority. Although a number of publishers never followed the Code, comics were never the same after.

There is no mystery element in these stories, no police procedural details, no psychological insights, and fortunately no bleeding hearts telling us how they were misunderstood souls. No, these are the human equivalent of rabid dogs, and when they are put down by a police revolver or the electric chair, there’s no drama and no tears are shed.

Forget origin stories and story arcs and comic-cons….forget the first time someone used the term “canon” when discussing comics…. something like GANGSTERS & GUN MOLLS and POLICE LINE-UP reminds me of how great comic books can be. 70 years after their publication, they STILL deliver a lean, efficient, stinging CHEAP THRILL….the same kind of cheap thrill they delivered to the pimple-faced teenager whose worn copy may well have been reproduced here. I can imagine him sitting behind his parents’ apartment, smoking corn silk and sipping a little bourbon he took from his father’s bottle on the mantle, watering it back the same level and hoping Dad would not notice, looking forward to the next time he could steal some change from his mother’s purse to buy MORE mind-rotting comic books….because after all, COMIC BOOKS ARE YOUR BEST ENTERTAINMENT VALUE!

Saturday, August 08, 2020


Yeah, you try comin' up with a better 'un!

Anywah---you all know just how apedooky I get over the entire rock 'n roll fanzine genre, especially those from the prime GOLDEN AGE OF ROCK FANDOM years when rock wasn't just a way of life, but something to MURDER for! Read on and YOU TOO might get the ol' fanzine bug cravings for real-life no-scmooze-allowed writing and but BAD! If I have inspired at least one of you to drag out your box of fanzines and start reading away I will consider this post to have met its intended goal. And if I have inspired A WHOLE BUNCHA YA to drag out your box of fanzines and sell 'em to me at greatly reduced prices I will consider this post to be a HUMONGOUS success!!!!

First on today's itinerary's this surprisingly spry entry into the annals of rock fandom. I've spoken highly of  Nancy Foster and her various opinions that have appeared not only in her own fanzines but the likes of NEW ORDER, FFANZEEN, TEENAGE RAMPAGE and PENTHOUSE, so when I come across a publication like this debut issue of NEW AGE you KNOW that I am in fanzine heaven!

And what a surprise this 'un is...all of the other Foster fanzines I have were typical mimeo/xeroxed affairs laid out like the mags of old, owning a whole lot in layout (and general fannish content) to the likes of the original WHO PUT THE BOMP! not forgetting the infamous COWABUNGA. But this one? Well, it sure is professionally printed on slick paper and typeset, sorta comin' off like that boff ish of Paul Morley's old OUT THERE yet with customary fanzine dimensions. I guess this process was way too expensive to continue with which is why those later-on mags were cranked out in the old fashioned way. But to tell the truth I like NEW AGE any ol' way I can handle it in my grubby chubby paws!

Kinda thin tho, and there are no record reviews to gnaw on which does reduce the intensity content somewhat. But as far as rock 'n roll power expected from a publication such as this (and often missing due to lack of spirit more than money) goes I can't complain. In this debut ish Foster concentrates on interviewing her fave teenage hunk rockers from Starz and Rex (whose lead singer and future SOLID GOLD host Rex Smith reveals that he was a member of that mid-seventies CBGB band Tricks...nothing of his time in Cross is mentioned giving me the idea that maybe he wasn't quite happy in that act!) plus Foster gives more'n ample space to Boston Velvets wannabes #1001 Fox Pass in a rather nice little summation of their place in the local scene. Even the Billy Squier interview digs a bit into the Sidewinders days making me wonder what that unrecorded/unreleased Casablanca platter woulda sounded like---sheesh, considering how Mick Jagger was rah-rahing for them at Max's Kansas City you'd think some sorta document woulda survived. Who knows, if I ever hit the lottery maybe I'll find out if those Piper recs were as good as more than just a few souls out there have made 'em out to be!

And if you liked Nancy's poetry in NEW ORDER you might just like the stuff that gets printed here! Of course it ain't as good as "Milk, Milk, Lemonade" but it will do. Coulda used a few more pages and some additional gristle to keep me well and happy, but as it is NEW AGE was a pretty good effort and why should I be so complainin' anyway???
I still marvel at just how professional and successful in every way/shape/form most of these seventies/eighties-era European (especially French) fanzines devoted to the BIG BEAT were. One wonders where the people who made these efforts got alla the money to produce such high-gloss work especially when I'm sure a lotta that money just hadda've gone towards buying records and other related sundries. There must have been some pretty big bank-rolling going on at the time, perhaps due to a rich pere who wanted to keep the decadent youth happy or some sideline business that brought in a whole lotta loot as if ya never saw THE FRENCH CONNECTION before!

I reviewed a few issues of FEELING in earlier "Fanablas" and if you'll recall I gushed over these mags even more'n Vesuvius. The compact size coupled with the rare photos and the general encapsulation of all that was RIGHT about the late-seventies rock 'n roll scene had me flashing back to everything I sure wished I could get in a mag at the time! And although French ain't exactly my first, second or even third language I can sure get a whole lotta the gist of what's bein' said a whole lot more'n Basil Fawlty did thinking those guests of his were volunteering to go out and get meat.

The big under-the-radar yet still  known to your standard teenbo geek of the day groups are all here which is good enough even if some of 'em went straight past my radar, while J.D. Martignon once again gives us not only a New York scene report but writes a number of album reviews for the fans back home. Although history (and a few disgruntled musicians) have pointed out just how rotten the man was well, if I only knew of his rich rock history maybe I could have put the fact that he cheated the groups on his label as well as those contributing wares to his record store on the back-burner so-to-speak. He musta hadda lotta good stories to tell and like, perhaps I coulda gotten a few outta him despite his rather deceiving nature... But I doubt it.
A lotta these fanzines devoted to a certain group or sub-species related to it sometimes do come off comparatively staid, and that can be said about many of the ones that sprouted up back in the eighties and nineties. Oh yeah, there were some rather boffo fanzines like UNCLE HARRY'S CITY KIDS and various Hawkwind-related efforts that captured the spirit of the groups in question, but for the most part a lotta these artist-oriented rags can get rather term-paper-y, and that's even if yer a high school sophomore writing one at three AM so you can meet tomorrow's 9:00 deadline AND IT SURE READS LIKE IT TOO!!!

Unfortunately this Captain Beefheart-related fanzine from the nineties entitled APOCALYPSO is one mag that really doesn't capture the real spirit of the man called Van Vliet. While the stories found within these pages are informative and add some more dimension to the entire Captain Beefheart mystique, the results can be rather arid and totally non Beefheartian reading like just about any TIME or NEWSWEEK article trying to capture the essence of an artist's meaning, flopping about like a heart patient post op while the nurses are at their stations trying to look busy. It's not that this issue of APOCALYPSO is dire by any stretch of the imagination, but I gotta say that I was hoping that the same sorta bop that made Captain Beefheart such a household word (in my house at least) woulda transferred to this particular publication with a huge my human gets me blues THUD!
I used to get really bugged back inna eighties/nineties when certain fanzine reviewers would tag my own effort entitled BLACK TO COMM as being not only a "xeroxed" mag (which it hadn't been since issue #4) but as a "reprint" 'zine as well. It was almost as if the reviewer believed that entire contents of my pride 'n joy were filled with nothing but old if relevant to the matter articles lifted from other rags sans the usual insight and spirit that could only come from the writings of inspired individuals such as...well, myself. After all, if BLACK TO COMM was a "reprint" 'zine what did that make such stellar efforts as ROLLING ROCK or KICKS which had their share of old articles boosting up their pages! 

However, after giving issue #16 of my efforts an eyeballin', the one with the Laughner/Reed interview from ZEPPELIN and a huge Laughner obit amongst other items, maybe I can see the point these "critics" were making. Eh, there was way more original text true, but I'm sure some stupid neophytes would have mistaken it for a quickie xerox cash-in job. Given the cranial depth of some of the rock critics out there what else should I have expected!

I haven't been that much of a Cleveland under-the-underground scene fan since at least 1982 when the groups and people that had made that particular era so exciting had either died, moved to New York due to a lack of interest on the home front, or dissipated into day jobs and a general frustration that the music they had loved and had cherished had mutated into something beyond its original sound and intent. It sure was a bleak time in rock 'n roll music and quite a downer especially considering all of the excitement and adrenaline rushing that was goin' on throughout the seventies. As Jim Marshall said, even the likes of Iggy and Lou were making turdsville records (well, I did like ZOMBIE BIRDHOUSE but I sure got the gist of what Marshall was aimin' at!), and a lot of the fun and spirit that went into those acts' sixties and seventies output had sure gone by the wayside to the point where looking forward to goin' out and seein' a rock 'n roll group just wasn't the same as if was a whole long time earlier.

But as usual I digress. Back to the whole "reprint fanzine" brouhahaha...HEY DADDYO is one fanzine that I never bothered snatching up because well, I never even knew the thing EXISTED until now! But I got a copy and well, I thought the thing was pretty good because even if it is a "reprint fanzine" it presents a good hunka Cleveland rock history that is just too real, too exciting to be encased in that museum they have up there which I hope goes bankrupt and closes down real soon given how all it is good for is reducing the feral and primal drive of the music to giddy commercial radio/AOR throb thrills. 

A good portion of CLE #3-A shows up here, and if you don't have the original this is good enough. Old ads from SCENE and the like also appear, and although the eighties stuff thrills me about as much as nude glossies of Anastasia Pantsios its there for the taking and take all you want because you ain't gonna be gettin' it anywhere else. 

Of course it's the old material that grabs me by the pleasure points in my brain, and also the clarification of past historical analyses which have turned out not to be as true as we had originally thought. And the rarities, like this pic of Crocus Behemoth taking on pizza eating champeen Mushmouth Mariano Machetti at the House of Bud are worth the price of admission. Funny, I always remember it as Crocus taking him on live on THE HOULIHAN AND BIG CHUCK SHOW in '74, not '72 which can only show you just how much of my past memories are perhaps as false as that guy who thought he was real but discovered that he was actually an android when he peeled back his wrist and saw a buncha flashing little lights and wires on THE TWILIGHT ZONE!
Hokay, I think it might be a fanzine. It might just be a standard rock mag you see on the mag racks too. That is, if you happened to be around a newsstand somewhere in Japan, for that is where ROCKMAGAZINE definitely emanated from.

It's all in Japanese and it also has the front cover on the back and you read it right from left, if you can read it at all. It kinda reminds me of some of the other Japanese magazines I have around the abode, but we won't get into that quite just yet!

It sure reads like it could be a fanzine, a high class one in the French fanzine tradition I've mentioned above and in other FANZINE FANABLAS.  There's a definite push towards informing the Japanese reader about rock 'n roll in not only their own land but those big scenes elsewhere, with pieces on the mid-seventies biggies from the whole Velvet Underground/Island Records cadre of the day (ACNE etc.) plus a big article on Patti Smith and of course reviews on most of the hotcha biggies of the day that we Amerigans mostly hadda experience through the import bins.

There are also some comics done up in that distinct Japanese style, the first dealing with Led Zeppelin which sure looks pretty funny and another about a rock keyboardist which turns into a homo romance thing you more prudish types (as well as mentally healthy specimens) will certainly want to avoid. But the thing is thick with lotsa pix so even if you can't read the native tongue you can enjoy it sorta the way like when you were four pouring through your dad's HUSTLER not knowing what those letters and things meant, but the pics sure were fun to look at!
The older the English punk rock fanzine is the better, if only because during the early days of the Anglo take on the p-rock form it wasn't inhabited by the same kinda socially-conscious and humorless activist types who coulda cared less about the music as they could the message. Which as we all know is about as rancid and as stifling as the armpit odors that emanate from these world saving reformers who are nothing but the uplifters of an old D.W. Griffith film only with a radical consciousness and way too many body piercings for comfort.

That's why I really like this second issue of UP + COMING from March/April 1977. It's thankfully free of the staid and stilted pose that would overcome many a group to the point where the music really took a back seat to the cause of the week. Y'know, back when there was a marked excitement over new (and old) ideas and the promise of rock 'n roll as something beyond the usual ROLLING STONE fun 'n jamz that seem to be remembered with fondness by way too many people who have been brainwashed by way too many a listening to Jackson Browne to notice what zomboids they were, are, and shall remain.

Hate fighting all them ol' battles and issues again, but I gotta give ya some background as to where all this ANGST I have for those who ruined rock 'n roll and other vital forms of pure adrenaline is comin' from. UP + COMIN', like a whole slew of fine reads of the day, fought the big battle w/o getting into the Marxist mutations that would follow making the eighties an even BIGGER drek than it coulda been. The lineup's pretty pubbed out here from the Count Bishops and Rock Island Line not to mention a great live review of the Hammersmith Gorillas, on a bill with French heavy metallics Shakin' Street to boot which just mighta made this one of those all-time rock gigs that people still talk about in hushed tones! THIS is what English punk rock used to be about, at least before it was taken over by the hippie contingent who sure did their best to ruin the entire concept with their take on the whole love and peace scam which punk rock was originally a healthy REACTION to! Of course that didn't take long to change as any perusal of a 1982 Small Wonder catalog could tall ya!
Now I've seen my share of crudzines throughout my rock 'n rol l fandom days. Now I've produced my share of crudzines as well, but never have I seen a crudzine as cruddy as FANZINE FOR DOZENS Of course I like it! Not only because of its downright lower than low budget and IQ, but due to the fact that this thing was created, produced and executed by none other than Ira Kaplan and Georgia Hubley, the two who were also the brains behind Yo La Tengo who are/were a group that released a number of fine and spiffy recordings that I'll have to dig up and re-listen to one of these days. Five one-sided pages with what I believe is a Peter Holsapple poem about Elvis Presley, A V-Effect Q 'n A session, a word jumble and other bits 'n feces that should bore the more sophisticated amongst you readers but hey, if you can be bored by this you might just be bored by any classic Warhol film and if so you do have my pity. Sure coulda used some of Kaplan's rock 'n roll articles to bouef the thing up but as it stands, it stands.
Recently I've been pouring through boxes of items I've gathered up in over forty years of collecting, separating the wheat from the chaff and keeping the chaff so to speak. I'm putting all the wheat, the more socially-conscious and neo-decadent eighties and nineties-era fanzines that I've received one underhanded way or another, up for sale one of these days when I get back on ebay (maybe if they lowered their rates it would help!) and keeping the good ol' chaff, those mags that might not have spoken for any particular generation of subculture or (shudder!) "community", but they sure spoke plenty to ME!

And this particular fanzine (masquerading as a "literary" magazine and doin' a good job of it!) really did speak a whole load to me! In fact, every time I've managed to pluck it out from the myriad assortment of SST hypesheets and xeroxes I've had a ball giving this the once over. VERSION was Bob Moore's boo-boo, and as far as these home-produced items go boy did it absorb a whole lotta good things about what these magazines meant and continue to mean all these years later. It looks and smells like an old fanzine from the early-sixties yet it came out inna mid-eighties and it has the spirit that you woulda got had you plucked some sci-fi fanzine publisher from outta his 1962 dorm and stuck him inna eighties and told him to SWITCH GEARS! And y'know, I'm sure that if the bespectacled sci-fi-er was to stop with the Bradbury and begin with Black Flag he woulda done just as great a job 'zine wise as Moore did with this particular effort (I'm still looking for an earlier issue with a huge playlist that reads like a must-hear for not only myself but for any throbbing BLOG TO COMM reader...I fear it got inadvertently thrown out).

The opening schpiel sets the mood, reminding me of those same rushed yet pumped up feelings I had creating and laying out twenny-five issues of my own crudzine either in the kitchen or my fart-encrusted bedroom, getting way more deep-down satisfaction outta it than had I spent all the money poured into BTC at the Tokyo Health Spa. Moore has a pretty hotcha sense of not only music and art (tho why no record reviews???) and his contributors add more'n a little class to the thing even if I woulda preferred Chris D. writing about records as opposed to laying down poetry. But hey, VERSION was a poetry cum music endeavor so why should I complain even if my idea of artistic expression is "Milk, Milk, Lemonade"???

The Meltzer piece regarding his flip into the forties was bril as were the reviews of Meltzer's then-extant bibliography. And yes, there is a piece on the then-hailed under-the-underground musical acts like the Sun City Girls and Borbetomagus which, as you would have guessed, gives VERSION even more of those airs of this NOT being some fru-fru arts and leisure publication for the hoity-toity types (ie. ALTERNATIVE ROCK MUSICIANS) to read while acting oh-so heartfelt and world-saving yet coming off like the load of bores that they are. More box searching is definitely in order.
AND FINALLY...the Toronto-based PANIC BUTTON is but one of the many items listed on my satire fanzine checklist that I can afford, mostly because there weren't any future underground cartoonists involved with this that would warrant PANIC BUTTON to cost an arm and a leg! Thankfully this ish (#6) didn't cost me an arm or leg but a few mere toes, and as far as these post-Kurtzman kinda mags go it does its job pretty much in the fashion that I would have expected. I mean, what else would you have thunk a buncha young upstarts doin' their own mag without the prying eyes of elders pouncing on their every word and utterance woulda come up with...THE BOBBSEY TWINS DISCOVER EACH OTHER?

In other words, this mag reeks of the same College Boy smartass humor that's plagued many a fanzine from the same strata with the usual paens to sex, hip kultur, beat writings and all of those things the bring up memories of Wally Wood's phony intellectual existentialist in one of those old MAD primers.

Some of this is smart stuff from the HELP!-inspired fumetti to the snide cartoons which, while mostly standard early-sixties fanzine fodder, do retain some sort of humor if only of a PG-13, snotty sense so common during those halcyon days of pre-lovenpeace. Other parts come off too "I'm so ABOVE you all" smug to the point whee you might feel like hiding your face from humanity after you're done reading. I guess if you were a fanzine editor or contributor way back when you hadda have a sort of smugness about you, a fairly healthy one at that which would eventually evolve into the whole Frank Zappa/R. Crumb/MONTY PYTHON/early SNL brand of satire once these fanzines type of guys eventually made their impression on the real world.

Still I found much to like in this PANIC BUTTON including this poem courtesy Lawrence Ferlinginsberg...

Blow my snorkel
dip my wick
Pull my cork'll
Pat my hip

Gregory Jack and Al
scratching out poetic pap
that amounts to crap
but at least its dirty.