Saturday, May 29, 2021

Like dogs with especially cold noses, these weekend posts can really sneak up on ya! An' why should any of ya complain since well, it's one way for your pooch to say howdy to ya and besides they're really good at tellin' when some female acquaintance is gonna have that special monthly visitor we all know about and fear (that's when doggie starts running away with that high pitched yip-like warning!). Yes, maybe we should have plenty more dogs around us to make sure we know when to herd the missus into the special padded cell for a few days of misery on her part but peace and quiet on ours!

Anyway, welcome to another edition of BLOG TO COMM and although I would like to say that this is a very special entry into the canon it obviously ain't! But as far as being fair to middling well, I won't complain about that --- pretty pedestrian if you ask me. Spent my ever-dwindling free time searching out old faves to play amidst the newies, having zilch luck trying to find a few that I was interested in re-spinning such as MESSTHETICS GREATEST HISS (having the "Greatest Hits" one nearby does help a bit considering how the Puritan Guitars are perhaps my faverave group of the week), but as R. Meltzer once said "wha' th' hey". At least what I have been listening to continues to reaffirm not only my life being but general will to go on, and if you wanna blame anyone for my will to survive blame the music f'r once! 
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As usual, gotta give thanx to those who thanxed me with these goodies, most namely Bill Shute, Bob Forward and Paul McGarry. No special thanx goes to an EX friend of the blog who, probably in a fit of self-righteous flakeitude, disowned having even known me he having decided to side with the eternal enemies of not only me but what I stand for which may not be "popular" or "cool" but certainly are not destined for that ash heap of history ol Barack O used to talk about. Eh, the pickings were slim and anyway I ain't gonna mention this turncoat's name lest I sully up this blog QUITE A BIT. Smarter folk out there will know who I'm referring to, obviously.



Sun Ra and his Mythic Science Arkestra-THE PARIS TAPES 2-CD-r set burn (originally on Kindred Spirits Records)

Never could catch up with these Sun Ra releases and this live effort from '71 (although released in 2010) is but another good one to have and to hold.  I gotta say that these early-seventies Sun Ra albums seem to be some of my favorites and this live effort is no different, what with a heavier than usual percussive bent to it which really does get me into a particularly deep NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC mood. Not quite enough John Gilmore or Marshall Allen for my tastes, but the early analog synth squalls and overall tension always seemed to do this body well and continues to even thought I've grown up since the days my cyster ruined my high stool electronic music term paper what with the "Sien Ra" typo 'n all. As if I'll ever forget her and forget it for that matter, right Brad?
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John Cale/Tony Conrad/Angus Maclise/LaMonte Young/Marian Zazeela-INSIDE THE DREAM SYNDICATE VOLUME  1: DAY OF NIAGARA (1965) CD (Table of the Elements Records)

Upon first spin a good decade or two back I just wasn't in the mood. But that drone sure didn't seem so monotonal once I settled back, picked up an old TV GUIDE to peruse, and sorta let the sounds settle into me. Worked swell. The original Theatre of Eternal Music more or less trying to make even John Cage come off sounding normil. Roots of everything from the Velvet Underground and Stooges to alla those boring performance artists of the eighties can be discerned even without tweaking your parameters in order to "get it".
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Various Artists-TOKYO FLASHBACK VOL. 5 CD (Modern Music/P.S.F. Records Japan)

It's always good getting a dose of this Japanese neu-psychedelic hard rock into my system, especially at a time when such music seems to be rather sparse if not outright banned! Yeah, this collection contains even more of that hard nova sound which, when not heading into the pure realm of atonal cut up,  always came off like the best the closing moments of the sixties hadda offer! Some familiar names here such as White Heaven, Overhang Party and Suisho No Fune (coulda used some Les Rallizes Denudes but we can't have nearly everything in our lives) are intermingled with acts that have slipped through my typically sieve-like mind and well, if this cold steel shank of aural indulgence just doesn't stab you in your musical psyche like it SHOULD I guess there is no help for you, sweetie!
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Ya Ho Wa 13-PENETRATION, AN AQUARIAN SYMPHONY CD-r burn (originally on Higher Key Records)

Didn't care for it that much back when I first heard it, but thirtysome years later I actually got a bitta a kick outta this crazed fambly outing worthy of Manson or at least Amon Duul I. Now it ain't that freakazoid communal, but PENETRATION does have its share of whacked out repeato-riff rock that kept my attention while the third portion of this "symphony" had this nice squeaky violin added to the hard thud beat that kinda reminded me of some doofoid English teenbos in the late-seventies tryin' their best to ape certain Velvets moves and press it up complete with a home-made sleeve. I'll probably never listen to this again but will admit that my opinion has, er, changed some o'er the years.
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DMZ CD-r burn (originally on Sire Records)

This McGarry burn popped up inna pile and kinda made me feel guilty o'er not playing either my vinyl or Cee-Dee proper version for quite some time. 's too bad that this platter, like fellow Bostonian efforts from the Sidewinders, Reddy Teddy and other worthies, hadda get shoved to the side during the Golden Age of Seventies Record Bin Plunging while lesser efforts clogged up the charts and subsequent flea market pules. Like those other Boston-area efforts this holds up really well, enough that I can see just how these guys got a bigtime deal at a time when it wasn't like the major labels were that eager to bank their bucks on rock 'n roll. Interesting fact --- according to producers Flo and Eddie, the porcine former Turtles were the ones who taught DMZ the Wailers Classic "Out Of Our Tree", a song the duo first heard when playing a bill with the legendary Northwest group and eventually performed during their Reprise records day! Wow!
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Various Artists-IN THE NAME OF THUNDERBALL CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Mixie-moshier than usual, but still funzie-wunzie. Some big names like Johnny Nash and 3/4ths of the Monkees in different guises pop up and we do get some strangeties like a soppoid version of "Fools Rush In" produced by famous shower taker Huey Meaux. And yeah, it all makes for a good diversion from this boring thing we call life. A couple PEBBLES/BOULDERS things in the guise of the Gentlemen and Basooties pop up, the latter doing their version of Zappa's "You Didn't Try To Call Me" that might make more'n a few Mother Peoples' ears pop up. And for all you cheezoids out there, this thing ends with Billy Strange's very own rendition of the theme from the infamous moom pitcher none of us were allowed to see when it made it to tee-vee, namely THUNDERBALL.

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Still have a buncha these back issues of BLACK TO COMM to unload on you unsuspecting menials who probably think that ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY is the last word in haute spare time activity wasting. Hey, if you wanna waste your time you can't do better'n these, so like what is keeping you fools and your monies from being soon parted anyway?

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

COMIC BOOK REVIEW! BELIEVE IT OR NOT! #69, APRIL 1977 ISSUE 
(Western Publishing)

When I was just clocking my way into the double digits you can bet your kajoobies that BELIEVE IT OR NOT was one of my fave-rave reads! Well, it was along with NANCY, DENNIS THE MENACE and of course those magazines which they always hadda put higher up onna racks only us kids were tall enough to peek into 'em anyway. My kiddoid mind was really wowed by the various (and true!) items that were presented within the pages of those easy-to-find paperback collections what with the strange historical facts to be found therein as well as the various bits of scientific facts that we all grew up with like peanuts are neither peas nor nuts, moths have no mouths and eat too much asparagus and you'll really have a hard time making the bathroom smell nice and dainty!

Of course my favorite BELIEVE IT OR NOT factoids where the ones which tended to get rather extreme in their efforts so-to-speak. Like the one that went something like "John Jehoshaphat, a career criminal, was sentenced to be executed in 1300, however when the executioner failed to show he was pardoned! A fellow inmate at the prison volunteered to do the head chopping, and it took him fifty-nine swings before the head finally came off!" Sure I exaggerate a bit, but when yer a pre-teenbo suburban slob ranch house kiddie things like this really do strike a nice 'n ghoulish inner chord with ya!

But when I read my first BELIEVE IT OR NOT! comic book which I scored in an early-seventies flea market/garage sale sweep one Sunday afternoon you could say that I was not pleased. The artwork was definitely not of the standard comic page variety and the stories were --- shall we say --- more comic book-y in that Gold Key style that I didn't quite care for. Worse yet there was nada of that blood and dismemberment that really appealed to my finer sense of being. 

Yeah, I know that Gold Key (later on Western) did not subscribe to the Comics Code, but still their stories were so pedestrian making me wonder just how could a kid who was digging those old Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko pre-superhero reprints really get absorbed into 'em? Sheesh, I'll take any of those DC and Marvel ARCHIE swipes with the Stan Goldberg faux-Dan DeCarlo artwork and definitely in need of a few creative writing classes stories over these grade-z turdsville sagas I'll tell ya!

Now that I have an older and hopefully have a more developed brain than I did during my adlo days I find BELIEVE IT OR NOT! a bit more entertaining. The definitely non-Ripley art is still comparatively tame next to the competition but I now find the stories at least readable and entertaining. Unfortunately there ain't no decapitations or poisonous rabbits to contend with here but we can't have everything I guess.

Maybe I should tell you that the subtitle of BELIEVE IT OR NOT! is "True Ghost Stories" so that's undoubtedly why none of the good grisly stuff is to be found here. But if you like a good enough ghost story and not the kind they mention in "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" you might find yourself eking some youthful fun 'n jamz outta these comics! Even if the conclusions are telegraphed pages in advance and with a subtitle like that just how far can one go without getting quite redundant anyway.

"When Hands Reach Out" takes place in 1434 England when Lord Berry was plagued by a pair of ghostly hands threatening him alla the time. An' if you don't think that some past misdeed of Berry was the cause of this supernatural travail you would certainly be in the wrong as usual. "The Tortured Spirit" tells of a 19th century case of possession in China when an evil force overtakes the body of a young man who, after being possessed, suddenly becomes a rather neat kinda guy if ya ask me! 

And then there's "Death Leap" a true-to-life saga from mid-nineteenth century India where an English Lieutenant sees a Captain race on his horse over a cliff only to disappear. Turns out the ol' Cap died a year earlier and given that the horse left no footprints it's obvious that a little ghost play was in store for whatever occult reason this soldier must repeatedly jump the cliff.

Hmmmm, the last story in this ish has a nice bit of tension to it. "The Day You Die" is the saga of a pampered pooch of a rich kid in 1631 England who consults a conjurer of some sorts to find out when his rich daddy was gonna check into the big castle inna sky, only the mystic summons up the spirit of a recently deceased man who sure doesn't take kindly to being disturbed even if he was only buried that morning! I mean, maybe if he was dead a hundred years I can understand, but sheesh he didn't even have the time to spoil!

So yeah, even with the predictability of it all these BELIEVE IT OR NOT! comics did have the right sorta suburban slob entertainment value to 'em. Of course I woulda preferred reading about that one bad guy who was cut up into six pieces and hanged on six different gallows, but I guess back then they had enough taste not to do anything that outrageous. Drat!

Saturday, May 22, 2021

IF MUSIC BE THE FOOD OF LOVE, LET'S PUKE!

All set for another weekend round of BLOG TO COMM now, eh? Didn't think so, but yer stuck with a post anyway ya sissies!

As usual I will try to do my best despite my inherent triteness and general grouchiness with regards to this world of ours, something which at times seeps into the mix whether I want it to or not. Bought a newie, popped open an oldie that was still sealed, and got a few from Paul 'n Bill who really know who to kowtow to!

Mebbee I should mention some uppa date things in order to look hip and with it. Not that I have to look so since everybody out there with a noggin knows that I am, but whadevva...  Like, howzbout that prez we have there...like, wotta guy! And that Mideast situation...wow! And as far as the Chinese Gongo thingie is progressing...mahvelous!!! Wbo sez this blogmeister is stuck in some self-imposed fantasy world where his horseblindered state of cranial connectivity is far beneath the ken of your average nu-hippie radical who probably got his radical cred watching POTEMKIN on PBS!

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Hokay that dint quite work out so swell. Howzbout I relate one of my rock 'n roll dreams, or one rather mish-moshy one that not only had me buying items  that were being sold by Miriam Linna at some record fair (!!!!!- got a good mid-seventies single rarity outta the deal) but one where the theme, time frame and entire mode changed within the very realm of my subconscious making for a saga that woulda even stymied Robert Cornell! 

I am old, I am thin but then again I'm young and fat then once again thin with greasy hair down my back looking kinda like a hood, though I think that maybe I wasn't back to being thin by this time. It keeps changing. I'm in a rock club, or am I watching a video of a group? Who knows, but they're a very good act playing a straight-ahead rock beat led by a lead singer who for all intent purposes looks a whole lot like Phil Silvers! Or at least your standard midaged bald guy with horn-rimmed spectacles only he's wearing wire rims, singing away and swaying as his backing act put out a heavy drone worthy of any of your hard rock 60s/70s cusp faves. The whole group is dressed in old man suits as well, and then suddenly I see an earlier edition of the group where the singer is now drumming and singing --- on guitar is his brother who looks equally midaged bald but they're still pretty entertaining at that. And then all of a sudden the scene switches to the group hanging out in CAMBODIA a whopping four decades back, and the singer/drummer is seen looking about the same age only with a slightly receding hairline (top portion greased back) as the five-piece group is clumped up oceanside in some exotic locale having a good time judging from their laughs. Sure is weird enough even for my strained psyche, but not as strange as the one Brad Kohler had where he is visited by a number of Jews collecting for some cause and they're all dressed up like Nazis because, well, we shouldn't forget the past. Only a few of the faux Nazis were sporting Throbbing Gristle lightning bolts 'stead of swastikas for some strange reason...


John Cale-VINTAGE VIOLENCE CD (Columbia Legacy Records)



Remember reading the above ad and wanting to hear this album soooo bad? I sure do. And remember actually giving VINTAGE VIOLENCE a twirl and being quite disappointed? Ditto here.

But then again that was long before my frontal lobes (talkin' brain, not boobs!) were fully developed and I was still thinking like the spiritual turdler that I was and in many ways remain. Nowadays I find VINTAGE VIOLENCE to be a pretty good effort 'n the kind we should have expected from John Cale even after all that carnage he spewed on those Velvet Underground and Nico albums. Heck, I find this one as good as PARIS 1919 and even FEAR and much better'n those subsequent Island efforts that never seemed to deliver on just what a whole load of us wanted from this bonafeed genius,. Naturally I am not using that word too lightly unlike many of you overzealous rockcrit types usedta (and maybe still do f'r all I know).

Ya might consider VINTAGE VIOLENCE just more of that early-seventies singer/songwriter jive, the kind that alla those iron-haired gals in high stool used to drool over and you agreed with 'em if only to get some trim as Don Fellman still puts it! Naw, this ain't the James Taylor sorta junkied up emote that was part and parcel to many a record collection at the time but a solid, mature and downright intense in its own intimate way album that, while not the braindrill I was expecting way back when, still sounds a hefty lot better'n the rest of the cry over a broken flower types who were singin' 'bout fire 'n rain making destitute teenage gals with deadly diseases feel sorry for 'em.

Best thing of all is that you don't have to hide your emotions while listening to these straightforward sounds which seem to hit me a whole lot more on-target than many of the aforementioned types of bazillionaire minstrels with sorry eyes and needled up arms. C'mon, you can sniffle a bit when absorbing the acoustic guitar strains of "Amsterdam" and chill to "Ghost Story" which would go well with a reading of any classic late-sixties Marvel gothic horror comic you can think of, one hopefully delineated by Jim Steranko.  These toons may not be as hard-on as WHITE LIGHT/WHITE HEAT but they sure come off as early-seventies straight ahead as the Flamin' Groovies!

The bonus tracks on the Cee-Dee will make you old fogeys with the original still proudly displayed in your collections dish out for a new 'un, what with an alternative of the barrelhouse rockin' "Fairweather Friend" as well as an all new track called "Wall", a gaggle of overdubbed viola that sounds as if it coulda been a backing track on THE MARBLE INDEX. And like, considering some of the things Lou Reed spewed out as his legend got bigger 'n bigger this might as well have been WL/WH for all I care!

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John Cale-HOBOSAPIENS CD (EMI Records)

Well Brad, I finally opened it and like well, it ain't as bad a platter as I woulda thunk it to be. But sheesh, it sure sounds exactly like what you expected these sixties/seventies geniuses to sound like once the eighties got in gear and like, it does have that air of syntho-gloss that never did figure in well with those art rock efforts that became so laughable once 1980 rolled around. Trouble is, I'm not exactly laughing at the more technoglitzy tracks. Kinda instrospective and even kinda boring, but I gotta admit that HOBOSAPIENS does have a tad of the spirit and verve that made some of those seventies albums worth playing over and over again. Unlike what I'm gonna do with this 'un but wha' th' hey...

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Rob Brown Trio-BREATH RHYME CD-r burn (originally on Silkheart Records)

Sometimes I happen to wander past some jazz radio station and cringe at the kinda bowties 'n nosh music that gets played on 'em. Then I go home and slap something like BREATH RHYME  on and the entire mystery of jazz as that flowing ooze of rhythm and cries from the deepest cracks of the brain just come roaring back. Highly reminiscent of some of the post-retirement Blue Note-era Ornette albums, and with sidemen like bassist William Parker and drummer Dennis Charles let's just say this ain't gonna sound like any of those "jazz" thingies you hear on late-night comedy talk shows!

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Stan Ridgeway-THE DRYWALL INCIDENT 2-CD-r set (originally on TWA Records)

For being a soundtrack to a "short" film these two platters sure pack a lotta music into them. But since I never was a fan of either Stan nor his various aggregations I can't say that I really enjoyed this brand of neo-wave electronic sound as much as I'm sure Paul McGarry woulda liked given he sent this burn to me way back when.  I get the feeling that the average type of warm blooded (I think) creature who would enjoy these synthesized sonatas still has the entire IRS records catalog firmly intact in his/her/its collection and, if previous happenstances in my life are to be believed, a body odor that could ream even the most clogged of sinuses around. 

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Various Artists-CAZUMBI --- AFRICAN SIXTIES GARAGE, VOL. 1 Cd-r burn (originally on No Smoke Records)

Once again Paul McGarry was NOT PAYING ATTENTION when he sent me a burn of this collection of African Nuggets since I reviewed an actual vinyl copy of this 'un when it came out way back 2008 way. Eh, the thing was staring me inna face as I was cleaning out the bedroom so I figured another evaluation of it might just be the thing and y'know --- it WAS!

As any Arthur Lee fan can tell you, listening to black guys imitating white guys imitating black guys really can be an experience and these bands really do get the sixties madness down pat. Like, this dude called Dr. Nico coulda been some wildass singer who coulda made an appearance on BACK FROM THE GRAVE while Conjunto De Oliveira Muga's "Sospesa Ad Un Filo" is as teenbo addled as the Electric Prunes' "I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night" it was obviously taken from! And hey, I had no idea that one of those freak "Them" spinoffs ended up in Africa, but their "I Want To Be Rich Again" is just as bloozy rockin' as anything the original Them with Van (or some of those immediate offspring) could get!

Most of it ain't as over-the-top as these tracks unless you prefer the more folky, commercial pop aspects of late-sixties radio. However, ya gotta admit they do one swell in the way they capture various English and Amerigan styles and echo 'em for a local clientele that I'm sure was way more sophisticated than any of those NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC types woulda ever guessed. 'n so, if you missed out on this when it came out I guess you can latch onto a copy, maybe even a free download, with a little expert duckduckgoin'. Proof that alla that jungle music you used to hear in Tarzan movies was the beginning of even greater things to come.

('n for ya vinyl freaks, this just might be worth the additional $$$ if only for the bonus tracks!)

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The New Colony Six-AT THE RIVER'S EDGE CD (Sundazed Records)

An oldie I dragged outta the collection in order to boost this post up a li'l. An' a good choice too considering how these guys were a pretty solid pop/garage band before heading for late-sixties Top 40 gloppiness that I still find kinda pleasant in its own way. Hints of the latterday group can be picked outta the pile even this early inna game, but the general twang guitar sounds and teenage Chicago style ('n I'm talkin' the city of 1966, not the overladen group of the same name!) recall the teenage days of slot cars and campy tee-vee shows a whole lot more than it does the late-sixties of mind-blown miasma. Best bet yet : the title track which was one of those PEBBLES tracks that really stuck in my cranium these past fortysome years!

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Various Artists-FOXY TWILIGHT CARNIVAL THUNDER CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

The plethora of sixties instrumental rock certainly got my head a'spinnin', and between those and the down groove garage band weepers Bill seems to admire so much (and why not?) this made for a great backdrop to some day-off room cleaning. The appearance of some rare English psychedelic popsters with a strong Syd Barrett bent to 'em also got my attention (didn't know Blossom Toes were so against the grain of the usual floppy peacenlove scam sounds of the time and with a name like THAT...). I didn't find the long lost in the rubble item I was looking for, but I did find myself in for a good piece of musical stimulation that helps me get over my general disappointment!

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Don't worry --- with the upcoming nice 'n warm weather we're bound to get you can still think up original ideas in order to stay in your cramped boudoir and read back issues of BLACK TO COMM. C'mon, if you can use your grey matter to think up interesting ways to cheat on your taxes and placate your guilty conscience you can conjure up good enough reasons to buy one or all of the copies oft is legendary (for all the wrong reasons) fanzines that are still left. Sheesh, I am disgusted with ya an' I do mean it!

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

COMIC BOOK REVIEW! CHAMBER OF CHILLS #23, JULY 1976 ISSUE (Marvel Comics  Group)

I sure as dickens used to like those seventies-era Marvel Kirby/Ditko/Ayers reprint titles as anyone who's read issue #22 of my crudzine could tell you. So it was with delight that I accepted from none other than Bill Shute this issue of CHAMBER OF CHILLS, one of the later-on titles that unlike the Monsters and Creatures on the Prowl or Roaming or whatever titles actually ran a few of the pre-code horror comics after the code was relaxed somewhat.

So no "Groon" or "Googam" here but you'll still get your thrills beginning with Stan Lee and Steve Ditko's "Where Lurks the Ghost!" from TALES TO ASTONISH #25, a mag which surprisingly came out the exact same month as the first issue of FANTASTIC FOUR. It's a strangeoid mystery tale that of course you can figure out by merely reading the first few panels but it's always great for me to espy Ditko's work which was always eye-catching in its definitely non-megalopian way whether Ditko was presenting some supernatural thriller or Mr. A. refusing to rescue some wrongdoer dangling off a precipice. 

"Bat's Tale" dates from the pre-code Atlas days and features artwork from the infamous Russ Heath of NATIONAL LAMPOON fame though you know him better for drawing "Plastic Sam" in an early issue of MAD. A tale of a roving band of vampires who look more or less like Man Bat types, these bloodsucking creatures meet their match when their most recent prey turns out to be more'n the chubboid midaged fanabla he looks like.

Longtime DAREDEVIL artist Gene Colan drew "The Men in the Morgue" which deals with some gangsters who commit murder and decide to hide out in a morgue where they take the mortician's dog as hostage! It's a good enough one even with the various holes one tends to find in tales such as this.

However the cover saga "Gorilla Man" has NADA to do with the updated artwork featured on the cover which will give Brad Kohler even more conniptions as to when these stories really originated! Just look at the cover tho because the story really ain't as hotcha as one woulda expected with a man having nightmares about a half human/half beast and his ultimate confrontation with such a flub-a-dub in the wilds of darker than usual Africa. Not that hotcha a way to end a comic title such as this but eh, I guess Marvel couldn't get away with reprinting some of the more out-there pre-code titles that many fans sure wished they coulda (though were the Atlas titles as over-the-top as the EC's they drew some of their inspiration from? Never did read a pre-code Atlas horror story that wasn't reprinted in one of these seventies mags!).

Another proud addendum to the BLOG TO COMM comic book collection which I hope Dr. Wertham would not approve of, though I'm sure that during his addled later days he woulda found it all just fine 'cept for the ARCADEs with S. Clay Wilson 'r sum'thin'.


Saturday, May 15, 2021

Yeah this was a weirditie of a week. Did any of you 'round here see the snow shower we got on Mother's Day, the time of year which usually signals to me that school vacation can't be that far around the corner? Then it got all nice and sunny reminding me of those times when I was but a mere turdler and I'd get to pick out some toy at the department store and play with it to my heart's content for the rest of the day. Sometimes seeing the way the sun shines on those beautiful ranch houses sure oozes out those great growing up memories that sure resonate in me even lo these many years down the line. I guess once you get as old as I am that's all you really have anymore are them memories because as we all know THEM DAYZE ARE GONE FOREVER AND YA KNOW IT!
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Given how sluggish the week has been I decided to spend my ever-dwindling free time  re-re-RE-reading some of my old fave mags which have fallen by the wayside or got stuck into manila envelopes in a vain attempt to preserve them somewhat. In the course of trying to get all of my issues of CREEM in one place for easy ref I managed to dredge up their special edition Summer 1981 heavy metal issue which I gotta say (against my better judgement) was perhaps that mag's wailing swan song to just about everything that those ozobs stood for the previous decade or so. Yes it is a good with the usual crud acts mentioned on the cover (yes, people would actually buy a mag if Van Halen were plastered front and center) but amid the Pat Benetar and Ted Nugent wretching there are some pretty hefty moments that are still relevant to the BLOG TO COMM philosophy which is only a step or two removed from the Playboy one, but oh what a step! (Let's just say that instead of using Nietzsche as our basis Joe Besser would do just fine.)

David DiMartino was always my idea of what was wrong with the post-Bangs CREEM which devoted itself to trying in the vaguest of ways to keep the gonz spirit alive while felching the big record companies at the expense of fresh music and ideas for that matter, but here he actually does himself a body good with his metal history which prominently features the likes of the Detroit histrionics specialists and Lou amid various acts supposed heavy metal expert Andy Secher never heard of. Gotta give DiMartino his due for including such faveraves as the Pink Fairies and Moby Grape in his list, plus even remotely trying to link up everyone from Amon Duul I to Big Brother and the Holding Company's "Oh Sweet Mary" to the metallic lexicon should earn him some sorta major no prize. (And mentioning METAL MACHINE MUSIC as an important statement in HM history sure does make me wonder what the average HIT PARADER aficionado would have thought had they come upon this special issue way back when!) 

Sure DiMartino had the audacity to tie in the slick smarm music of Van Halen with the brutal truth of Iggy and the Stooges but eh, at least he name dropped the kinda acts that do, and perhaps in a few cases should, adorn the collections of each and every doofus who tunes into this blog. Some jerk out there was reading this and took plenty of notes, ifyaknowaddamean...  

But whadevva, this is one mag that brought back vivid memories of reading this very issue at the stands way back when, a time when dishing out $2.95 for this quickeroo was something that would really have set this depression-era wages fanabla back quite a bit.
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If it weren't for Paul McGarry, Bob Forward and Bill Shute well, the world would be an entirely different place. And if any of you say for the better you can be I'll be comin' 'round to knock your block off! Instead of being oh so smug about things why don't you read the following reviews and enlighten yourself in ways the Maharaj Ji never even thought of!




Herbie Hancock-TAKIN' OFF CD-r burn (originally on Blue Note Records)
 

Long before he went funky and not-so long before he recorded some avgarde platters that have been highly recommended to me, Herbie Hancock was playing some pretty straightforward bop that might have even made the bowtie on Leonard Feather do a few twirls. You strict free splatter types will probably think TAKIN' OFF sounds really martinis and nosh but I personally find it a solid slab o' good enough early-sixties music not as striking as Coltrane or Dolphy but better'n some of the fluff that era was known to spew. Features some names you might be familiar with...Dexter Gordon, Freddie Hubbard and Billy Higgins (I'm not too fam. with Butch Warren tho I get the impression Bill Shute will enlighten me real soon...).
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The Fundamentalists-THE CIVILIZED HORSE CD-r burn (Walls Flowing Records)

Bob Forward proves he's just as backwards as some of these bedroom avgarde practitioners I've come across tend to be, but only in a forward way. A mix of various sound kadiddles that might sound leaden and (dare I say) "masturabatory" to some, but the guitar scrawls did remind me somewhat of Loren Conners playing with a dozen electrode attached to him during the middle of an electrical storm while the percussion tracks sounded like something Andrew Cyrille might have worked out after a serious bout of rigor mortis. As far as the sound collages go --- just try presenting those in some junior college music appreciation class and see what happens to YOU, Bob!
***

Human Arts Ensemble-UNDER THE SUN CD (Freedom Records, Japan)

T'was awful neat of Freedom to release this one on disque but why not WHISPER OF DHARMA? Woulda made a great twofa-type collection for those of us into the whole BAG mode. Hefty mid-Eastern rhythms mix with a true funk punk demeanor kinda giving you the impression that you're somewhere in Mecca trying to score heroin. Not as good as the FUNKY DONKEY album which still gets a bit of play 'round here but still solid enough for those of you who like the way the HAE mixed up their free jazz with some pretty good hard-urban funk moves. Features the usual BAG gang....Oliver Lake, James and Carol Marshall, Charles Bobo Shaw, Marty Ehrlich etc., as well as a surprise appearance from Lester Bowie.

***

THE FRANK POPP ENSEMBLE CD-r burn (originally on U.M.T.V. Records)

Rehash of various sixties soul moves that might dredge up a few rheumy memories of somethingorother inside your brain. For me it's pretty on-target if rather standardized tamebo listening that doesn't stir up any unbridled emotions of pure rage like music should. Somehow I get the feeling that you just might find you tapping toe to it when your guard's let down. Better watch it before your chic-er than thou enemies find out --- boy will they razz you from here to Bizoo and back!

***

White Fence-FOR THE RECENTLY FOUND INNOCENT CD-r burn (originally on Drag City Records)

A retro psych-pop effort from the snazzily named Tim Presley that oozes more originality than put on paens to long gone bargain bin thrills. It has a particularly English bent to it which should appeal to the CHOCOLATE SOUP FOR DIABETICS/RUBBLE fans and followers, and it's so on-target that even the English accents don't sound phonus balonus to me. Sure it ain't Syd Barrett but then again what is these days?

***

Alan Sondheim-RITUAL-ALL-7-70 CD (ESP disk/ZYX Records, Germany)

Pulled this one outta the heap if only so's I could bolster this week's review total, and what a choice I made! I never did understand exactly where the music of Sondheim during those days (two platters on ESP, one on Riverboat) was coming from but given the use of horns I'd assume it was the new jazz thing. And you get plenty of that on this side which free bops around in the kinda fashion you woulda thunk Maynard G. Krebs woulda under the effect of nutmeg. Thirteen (mostly) brief cantinas of soundsplurge that I'm sure most of you reg'lar readers are familiar with, or have I pegged you guys wrong again (and yeah, one thing you guys need is a good pegging!).

***

Various Artists-CHILLY SCENES OF ROACHES CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

Bill delves into his usual obsessions from pre-Mandrell country music to weird audio esoterica that only a well-developed mind as Bill's can comprehend. Some of it will make ya puke like the tribute to famed spoiled brat rich kid "John John" Kennedy to the faux soul that makes me wanna wear one of those scarves that Fred on SCOOBY DOO had affixed to his neck for years. If you're a fan of obscure instrumental sides, teen idol wannabes, stoopid seventies Slurpee ads and local country twangs (I think Lucille Bassett is the closest anyone female's come to the Peter Stampfel singing style even if he stole it from Grandpa Jones) you'll find this an even better soundtrack for that fart-encrusted party you'll be holding in your boudoir this very evening!

***

Are you ready for some real solid rock journalism the kind that ROLLING STONE made their moolah with emptying the coffers of many a smarter than their parents kiddoids way back inna early seventies? Well if so, DON'T buy any of these back issues of BLACK TO COMM but if you really do wanna spend your shekels I can't think of a better place for your cash to go towards, if you get my drift.

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

COMIC BOOK REVIEW! O.G. WHIZ #3, AUGUST 1971 ISSUE (Gold Key Comics)

Boy does this comic book dredge up the ol' memories. And by that I mean memories of NOT reading this particular title if you can believe it! Y'see, thanks to the iron fist of parental demand during my adolescent suburban slob days there were words that my cyster and I were definitely not permitted to use, and other than the actual hard breaking the second commandment and various excremental/sexual words oft used by careless elders and those bad kids in the neighborhood the various cheap knockoffs of said words were strictly verboten! That included such seemingly innocent terms like "gosh darn", "cripes", "gol ding ya", "sheesh" maybe and the ever popular "gee whiz"! Sure they sounded rather tame next to the original takes (tho the folk never did catch onto the true meaning of "hot stuff"!) but the utterance of even these rather innocuous exclamations was bound to get either of us the ol' beady eyed look!

So that's why I never did pick up a copy of O.G.WHIZ back when it was up 'n about at the Dimoff's comic book rack way back inna early-seventies. For some reason or another I woulda thought mom 'n dad woulda been more pleased to see an issue of ZAP! than this Gold Key comic with the controversial title lyin' on the bed. And judging from the covers I had espied of O.G. WHIZ I thought this kinda comic woulda been exactlly the thing the elders woulda wanted me to be reading --- funny innocuous cartoons made for kids about kids with lotsa fun gags 'n adventures to be had. Not that you couldn't find any adventures kids woulda liked inna pages of ZAP!...

The title character's a kid who happens to be president of a large toy company and bereft of an origin story I don't know how he acquired such a lofty position. However, a mean grownup appropriately named Mr. Thutnose is doing his underhanded best to have Whiz gone so he can rule the Tikkletoy company naturally flopping about badly as he usually snatches defeat from the jaws of victory. Thankfully there is a grownup on Whiz's side, a Miss Trinket who is young and cute and, like yer very own kindergarten teacher, would definitely win the hearts of any lovesick Wheezer or Chubsy Ubsy who woulda laid eyes on her. She's probably a bitch when off panel but at least it's nice to look at a li'l feminine pulchritude as the days get even more butchier than usual.

The stories are pretty good even if they are worked over themes from the past ninetysome years of highlarious kiddie fodder. "The King and I" reworks the old Prince/Pauper switcheroo as Whiz and Neuresthenia switch identities by wrapping themselves up mummy-like in bandages to see how the other half lives. "The Curse of Tut-Tut-Tut" has the Tikkletoy Company making copies of a prized medallion to make money for flood victims only the real deal one gets mixed in with the bogus efforts. "Love Thy Labor" deals with relations between management and the proles at the company and since labor relations are something that never does come up in kiddie comics this does make for a keen change o' pace. And closing out this particular ish is "The Toy Boy Scout" where Whiz thinks the other kids in his troup are playing up to him because he owns a toy company, and he's right!

Hey, it was a fun comic that went swell on a Saturday afternoon which could have been spent doing something creative. Well, who sez this particular review ain't, but anyhow I will admit I really would have appreciated this comic had I read it while it was fresh rather'n get it handed down to me by Bill Shute. And come to think of it, do you think my parents woulda approved had they found a copy of THE NEW ADVENTURES OF JESUS in my fart-encrusted bedroom?

Saturday, May 08, 2021



You'll never guess what I found in the mailbox just this past week! A box, and not just any everyday runna the mill box but one that was packed with THREE bottles of that infamous HP Sauce that I mentioned in one of my infamous cooking columns a few weeks back. They came courtesy of a fellow named Top Cat James who often comments on this blog and well, as soon as I check the bottlecaps to see that they haven't been tampered with you can bet I will be using them on my hamburgers and meat pies (still have a pile of 'em I made a few months back that are freezing away inna fridge!) making my meals a little more tasty! Not only that but Top Cat even sent the illustration you can see directly above which, although I should be totally INSULTED by the idea of my crudzine being used to clean away fecal matter (although I did use specially absorbent paper), I do find kinda funny in my own strange fanabalesque sorta way. However, in all honesty I HOPE THE STAPLES REALLY TEAR INTA YA, DENNIS!!!. Once again a big hearty thank ya to Mr. James who sure knows what one can do with alla those back issues wasting away in cyster's basement!
***
The general blandness of the week was rippled a bit by a package from Paul McGarry. Thanks Paul! Adding to even more ripples of pure joy was a box that came the following day courtesy of one Bob Forward! A nice gesture altho it is clear Bob is losing his mind...I mean he actually sent me a cassette of a Bernie and the Invisibles/Cramps show (separate, not together) that arrived on these shores a good twennysome years back which was reviewed on this here blog a few years back! I think the high sonic intake has finally gotten to him. But eh. it's free and why should I complain===that much that is,

Also thanks to Bill Shute and Edgar Breau for reasons you will read about almost immediately.


 
Edgar Breau-SHADOWS OF ECSTASY CD (Flying Inn Records)
 

Looks like we got a real contender here.

This was ex- and future Simply Saucer Edgar Breau's early-nineties band, an electro-acoustic ensemble that, even with the presence of longtime Saucer bass guitarist Kevin Christoff, sounded not so much as a hard rock enterprise as it did like one of those quieter acts that used to pop up at the ol' CB's 313 Gallery next door.

And Shadows of Ecstasy are sure as non-pretentious straightforward entertaining as I found a fair number of those acts from the Gallery I caught via cybercast to be. Especially the ones that were still stuck in some sorta past musical groove void of the various grotesqueries that have plagued recent rockist moves to the point of total alienation. Now this sound is something I can wrap my psyche around THAT'S for sure!

Thankfully this acoustic-oriented music ain't of the "Kumbaya" variety either! Scads of classic Dylan with various Reedian moves can be discerned and the results sound way fresher'n most alla the various precious petunias moaning about the latest atrocity that I've heard for quite some time. Breau's vocal abilities tend to remind me a bit of those of a certain Jonathan Richman, and the music tends to be a little like Breau's post-nineties efforts with even more classy late-sixties neo-NUGGETS meets HAVE MOICY! moves ('n don't forget Syd B. on "Pony Ride"!) with various pop chart topping cues with slight Association harmonies tossed in. (For more information please consult your copies of BLACK TO COMM #18 which is long out of print.) If you go for that stuff you might like these pretty solid efforts. If you don't you shouldn't be anywhere near this blog!

The lyrical content, for once, is quite sharp and such a relief from the usual introspective mulch that's been so in-vogue as of late to the point of pure nausea. Extremely absorbing and based on truly classical reading and an understanding of current mores too --- I mean who else but Breau would think of writing a sequel to BILLY BUDD ("Handsome Sailor") or dig up that truth about Margaret Sanger that has only recently brought Planned Infanticide to reluctantly disavow their very own Alfred E. Neuman? Wish a lyric sheet was available what wha' th' hey? At least I can make 'em out a whole lot better here'n I could on those live tapes where the quiet music battles it out with local yokels talking about their friends' trip to Florida.

A beautiful effort (with melodies, remember THOSE?) that really reinforces those springtime urges to come to life at least one more time. Maybe someone out there can tell you how to latch onto a copy! No info on the sleeve so I sure as heck can't. 
***
Forms of Insanity-AMBIT 1986 CD-r burn (Walls Flowing Records)

Forms of Insanity live in Kent and elsewhere 1986 captured by tapes that would do a body well if they were done up fancy-like.  The performances captured here sound mighty gnarly only with the guitar mixed way back and the vocals obliterating things so you don't get quite the effect that one needs to live vicariously through sound or whatever else hippie jargon you can think of. I believe Forms of Insanity have some solid heavy doody recorded output up 'n about...guess I'll hafta search it out if the spirit would happen to move me. 
***
daDadah-RISE UP! CD (Accurate Distortions Records)

I like Kitty Brazelton's Musica Orbis platter (well, 'cept for those two cornballus pop tracks on the second side) and thought that her foray into heavy metal pop group Hide the Babies was a solid combustible musical effort, but daDadah really has me scratching even more hair offa my already shiny scalp. Interesting Orbis-esque pop moves are sandwiched between stationary-sounding experimental numbers and snoozeville Eddie Van Halen-styled guitar solos. It kinda comes off like a weird salad toss of George Crumb rejects and soundtrack music for a dream I once had about being marooned in my third grade classroom totally nude. I must admit that I really like it when the thing gets moving and doesn't sound so art-project-y.
***
Luther Thomas Quartet-LEAVE IT TO LUTHER CD (CIMP Records)

Since 11th STREET FIRE SUITE costs too much I decided to get this cheaper Luther Thomas recording that's part of the CIMP "Spirit Room Series" which begat a few quite listenable efforts during its time. Like the rest, LEAVE IT TO LUTHER presents Thomas and band in a nice rather intimate setting where you have to strain your ears to hear the quieter bass solos, only without the cackling of some malcontents at the next table, Nine tracks including some old standby re-dos as well as two using the leader's name ---now how about that!
***
Spiral Wave Nomads-FIRST ENCOUNTERS CD-r burn (originally on Twin Lakes Records)

Well whaddaya know! Paul actually sent me a burn of a current release this time 'n not one of those umpteen-year-old thingies that I was too dense to know came out way back when it did! Unlike on their earlier effort, which was a bit too front porch commune-y for me, Spiral Wave Nomads play droneathon freakout rock miasma sounds that remind me of a whole load of those German groups from the early-seventies who were smart enough to know that psychedelia still prevailed and recorded hours long cantatas based on the same druggy riff that carried them through times of no money as well as times of no grass. Its surprising that such freeform sound is continuing to be made even this far down the line. Fans of Amon Duul II should enjoy this quartet of lysergic riffage that conjures up images of dank rehearsal spaces and heavy duty body odor. 
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The Vacant Lots-DAMAGE CONTROL CD-r burn (originally on A Recordings)

Not as exciting as that other one of theirs but it's still good. Might have somewhat of an amerindie alternadrone to it that sounds like a thousand other similar under the covers groups out there but they supersede the average by tossing in a few good sound moves that bolster the sonic presence without coming off pretentious. 'n that's even when they start sounding like just about any late 198X band that you thought was soo-perb back then but have you listened to 'em lately? Keep an ear open for "Land" which sounds like mid-seventies Eno 'n you'll like it! DAMAGE CONTROL just might be worth the opportunity to cop a copy offa youtube 'r somethin' as equally cheap.

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Various Artists-YOURS TRULY, FOUND AND FOOTLOOSE CD-r burn (Bill Shute)

If you think that I was turning cartwheels cross the floor over this 'un in typical Procol Harum fashion you'd be wrong, but then again I wasn't scrooching my face into Maxine Waters gerns either. The JOHNNY DOLLAR program with Edmond O'Brien in the title role wasn't up to sonic standards and kinda wooshed by me while the German radio ads and music had me double taking exactly just WHO won the war. While I'm at it those synthesizer takes on the bit hits o' '70 reminds me of technology watered down to the mentality level of the lounge at the Holiday Inn long after the swimming pool's closed. The Grasshoppers' early sixties instro sound was tasty enough tho, and JP Parks and the Bucktown Six were up there in the standardized blues riffage dept. so no shred machine for THIS definite keepie!

***

How you've lived your life alla these years without the benefits of BLACK TO COMM back issues I'll never know. It's not too late to fill up your cracks in the collection, but then again judging from recent sales it won't be too late even in 2900 AD. Take your time... you always have.

Wednesday, May 05, 2021

BOOK REVIEW! AL CAPP'S LI'L ABNER VOLUME 8 (1949-1950) BY AL CAPP! (IDW, 2016)

It sure does tickle my heart knowin' that, even after all those years of controversy and self-righteous ex-hippies putting down Al Capp for his criticisms of the New Left and his unwavering nose for pudenda (even if these same social critics seem to dismiss Bill Clinton for his even more devious delvings into the seedier side of sexual release), LI'L ABNER remains a popular comic strip which is, after all these years, deeply ingrained into the comic strip consciousness enough to warrant the royal treatment lo these many years later. 

And not only in various in and out of print collections that are easy enough to obtain, but on-line for a world who by now finds the strip more of a historical curiosity than for the by-now antiquated socio-political commentary that Capp was quite famed for. 

Yes, it does do this fanabla a whole world of good knowing that a good fortysome years after Capp's retirement from the comics world and eventual deep sixing that there are some who still find LI'L ABNER necessary to their own sense of existence. Myself as well...after all, along with NANCY and HENRY this strip remains a part of my earliest flickers of memory, no doubt thanks to my father reading it to me (well, somewhat) as a child but frequent morning viewings of the short-lived Columbia cartoon series which I will say holds up way more'n some animation wags claim. But sheesh, where is the lawsuit from the Popeye people what with Mammy Yokum ripping off a good portion of his schtick?!?!?!?

This volume featuring strips form 1949 to 50 shows Capp at the peak of his powers what with the artwork becoming even finer (reminds me of those late-19th century PUCK efforts from the likes of Keppler and Opper) and the stories becoming pretty gruesome enough even to the point where Capp even slips a Nazi death camp reference in at one point! Particularly grueling is the one where Daisy Mae is kidnapped by some elderly matron for her oafish son and is forced to watch her fellow Dogpatchians starve to death as long as Daisy dares holds out. The Kigmies also appear and while they weren't as popular as the Schmoos there's still a good guffaw to be had there and there, while Abner goes on an extended search to piece together a missing page from a FEARLESS FOSDICK comic book after being mesmerized by the remaining shard of a female knee! Wow, fetishism hit the comic strip pages even back then (although Nancy once did conjure up an image of a young lass tied up rather suspiciously)!

'n yea, there's the introduction of cover star Evil-Eyed Fleagle whose "whammy" inspired one of them classic Screamin' Jay Hawkins numbers that just didn't pan out hit-wise.

The Sunday strip continuity goes on swell with loads of sagas including one about Lonesome Polecats' ultra-sexy galpal who just came back from college with a strong case of Red Power to the infamous FOSDICK tale which has him on the lookout for a can of poisoned baked beans killing anyone possessing such an item in order to "save" them! This 'un also appears in a variety of reprints but at least it can now be seen with every panel intact the way nature intended!

Of course ya also get the obligatory text regarding the state of ABNER and Capp during those times including some snaps of various Schmoo items which can be obtained at an antiques mall of your choice, not to mention an update on the infamous Capp/Ham Fisher feud which even spilled into the pages of ABNER, most notably in the storyline featuring a race horse called "Ham's Nose Bob".

Saturday, May 01, 2021

Oh chee, another BLOG TO COMM post. Well, ya better feel GOOD about the fact that yer even gettin' one this week! Yeah, I coulda been spending my ever-dwindlin' free time doing more constructive things like dolin' out slop at the homeless shelter or watching even more of those GUNSMOKE reruns that have been captivating my imagination (I like to imagine what REALLY goes on upstairs at the Longbranch Saloon!) but nooooo, I have to hunker down and listen to a lotta music (both good and bad I'll admit) and let you loafers know what I think about 'em just so's you can decide whether or not to go 'n getcherself a copy or two yourselves! A thankless job and one I never did have a "calling" for (the only calling in life I ever had was to be a decadent millionaire in the J. Paul Getty III vein but them's the breaks) but better me than thee I always say!


Big hankerin' hunkin' thanks to Paul McGarry and Bill Shute for the gibs. I mean, other what other circumstance would I ever get to hear some of these obscurities anyway?


 
Tim Buckley-STARSAILOR CD (Music on CD Records)

Sheesh, why should I be reviewin' this new Cee-Dee reissue since I already have one Cee-Dee and three whopping vinyl platters of STARSAILOR rotting away in the collection? I'm doin' it because STARSAILOR  is that good of a record to recommend, and given the lack of real deal musical throb thrills these days you need every bit of hard-gunge that you can lay your precious little ears on!

It might just go right past your unadulterated beanie just how overall rockist important an album this one is. For one thing STARSAILOR was as great a slab of downright rock 'n roll career suicide as METAL MACHINE MUSIC was, bumming out the hippified sensitive folkstrummers even more'n Reed turned on the heavy metal crowd he had accrued as of late. For another thing STARSAILOR was one of those 1970 albums that seemed to ring in the more down-to-earth hard-edged sounds that the seventies would become renown for. Along with FUNHOUSE, THE MAN WHO SOLD THE WORLD (MUSIC TO EAT if ya wanna stretch things to '71) as well as a whole slew of import oddities from Germany that we wouldn't even know about for a good six or so years, STARSAILOR drove home the whole downer trip of the day even more'n the hard rock groups on the ascent ever could. And thirdly, it was so good that even Pat Boone covered "Song to the Siren" on his own getting up to date and hipster comeback album, although he no doubt snatched his version offa Buckley's '68 rendition on THE MONKEES...as if Boone woulda covered the title track inna millyun years!

Not only that but for a late-seventies suburban slob teenbo who was gobbling up ten-year-old finds and new spurts as if he had just popped outta the pod STARSAILOR was an unexpected wow-wow! Even by that time it had become harder to snatch ir up in just about any form (though the discovery of an ancient 8-track cutout espied in a stereo shop bin had me contemplating buying a machine worthy enough to play it on!), so when I laid my eyeballs upon a flesh and vinyl copy you can bet that it (as well as Buckley's earlier attempts at avgarde musical moves LORCA which only set me back a whole buck!) got snatched up even faster'n Vanessa Del Rio going for the Anusol!

The band is great what with the defecting Gardner Brothers from the original Mothers adding some fairly good moves that kinda make me wonder why they never tried to make it inna jazz world on their own and time signatures are all over the place getting funky and hard rockish like nothing since Black Pearl! It don't sound like them but the West Coast freakout quotient is certainly something that cannot be denied.

Although firmly rooted in the rock 'n roll idiom those blasts and blares also recall the grimier side of the New Black Music of Pharoah Sanders with an El Lay drive mixed in. I don't see how anyone who believed that side two of FUNHOUSE or the clanging of Guru Guru's UFO represented the true sounds of utter decay and desperation that earwormed its way into way too many teenbo casualties to keep track of could not find even a tad bitta appreciation for this alb!

If it makes any bit of a difference to you Nick "St. Nicholas" Kent thinks very highly of it. I kinda wonder if I hear in STARSAILOR  what he hears in those mid/late-seventies Joni Mitchell platters he still hosannas to the rafters? Sheesh, maybe I better not press the subject any further or I might end up loving those as well.

Available again on Cee-Dee after years legal hoo-hahs,  STARSAILOR just might be the sonic remedy to many of the musical woes of today as it was a good half-century back. Only I hope that now there are more fanablas out there aware of its power and overall abilities to crush those repression blues you liberated kiddies have piled up in you. If the word had only gotten about about this way back when maybe it woulda stayed in print longer and like, I sure coulda used a copy a whole lot sooner'n when I eventually did get hold of one I'll tell ya!
***

Rhino Bucket-PAIN AND SUFFERING CD-r burn (originally on Acetate Records)

Do YOU miss the Golden Age of Hard Rock that made its presence known whether you wanted to know about it or not way back when? Didn't think so, but if you do you'll probably go crazy over this 2007 release from a group with the rather unlikely name of Rhino Bucket. Heavy of the early-seventies aspects of metallic scronk (talkin' Free and Led Balloon along with a few others you can read about in any CREEM heavy metal history), Rhino Bucket also tend to take more than a few of their moves from late-seventies AC/DC which will probably make a few of the more heavier duty readers out there wanna seek this out. And after years of faux metal prissies taking over the world of true sonic expression it's sure nice to hear what this stuff was supposed to sound like before it all got glitzed out! It's worth the time to seek out if you tend to be a little more randy in the soundscapading than usual.

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The Jet Black Berries-SUNDOWN ON VENUS CD-r burn (originally on Pink Dust/Enigma Records)

Fairly faithful to the whole sixties good memories rock ruckus, but then again SUNDOWN ON VENUS might be a little too slick for some of the gruffier survivors amongst us. Highly recommended for those of you who still have a hankerin' for the better portions of what eventually became of "new wave" back inna eighties and were torn between the past and present due to overdose readings of KICKS magazine. I felt it rather copasetic with my reading of some old issues of PSYCHOTRONIC VIDEO that I haven't touched in over twenty years and who knows, you might have the same goody gumdrops feeling about it too!

***

FELT CD (originally on Nasco Reecords)

Amid the standard 1971 relevant rock moves there is a decent album waiting to burst out. Neo-Doors jazz signatures with a tad toss of then-contempo singer/songwriter emote plus a few other West Coast signposts make for a fairly digestible outing. Overall a fair platter though you can tell that these guys wouldn't have been signed in a millyun years had they tried to break out of their Alabama enclave.  

***

White Fence-LIVE IN SAN FRANCISCO CD-r burn (originally on Castle Face Records)

Y'all know that, other'n these Cee-Dee-Are burns that I get sent, I have not been paying much attention to many of these newer'n new underground rock groups that have been spurting up as of late. An' when I say "of late" I mean the past thirtysome years! So when I do hear a relatively new group that does something to the inner core of my being or some other hippie jargon I must say that it all hits me pretty hard, and in a good, life-reaffirming way as well.

These White Fence guys are one example of a newer kinda band that delivers on the BLOG TO COMM aesthetics 'n in an real hard-pounce fashion at that. They play sixties/seventies cusp hard rock with a hard garage band tone to their sound which woulda earned 'em hefty heavy metal accolades in any boff mag from the early-seventies (and perhaps even later). The singer has this great Bob Dylan nasal tone that gives the already rockin' sound a strange enough air and between the hard-riffage and the at-times neo-retro sound ("Breathe Again" borrows freely from "96 Tears"!) this live effort sounds like well, it musta been a pretty fun night!

Dunno if any of the other (if any) White Fence output is worth the time and energy to get but this record didn't make me wince one bit. Not a sign of coy cute and precociousness to be found...can ya believe it???

***

Various Artists-ACTION PAINTING SOUL TRAIN CD-r burn (Bill Shute) 

Fun 'nuff mix of relative gnu recordings from the likes of the Raveonettes and Action Painting's MUSTARD GAS EP (more powerful'n the usual power pop sound!) mixed up with sixties rarities and whacked-out soul courtesy Sound Experience. Personal favorite is the promo record for Selmer's "Varitone" sax pickups. Some of the furrin' stuff and the instrumental "Soul Train" by the Rim Shots (which ain't the theme to the famed tee-vee dance show!) and the cover of "Evil Ways" didn't quite flibben my jib but wha' th' hey! Too bad Bill snuck a coupla beer commercials on here because well, I'm trying to avoid anything harder than lemonade beverages 'round here and there's always that li'l seed of temptation that puts those impure thought into my mind. Sheesh, now I just GOTTA get a can of beer and some Mountain Dew to make an imitation Hop 'n Gator that'll really dredge up those early days of adolescence like pronto!

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I know it....I've been checking the "hits" on these posts and can tell that THOUSANDS of people have been hitting the link that takes 'em to the back issues of BLACK TO COMM page! So howcum there have been so few orders for 'em comin' in as of late? As if I didn't know, so why dontcha all get off your acne-pitted butts and BUY a few if only to keep me well in Funyons for at least a week or three???