Thursday, March 29, 2007
This letter arrived late last evenin wedged inside an empty bottle of Prell shampoo what came wrapped in an old Fedex cylider. At 1st I didn't get it, then I split the container in half & out fell this note. Scrawled on deli wax paper & smellin of onions, I couldn't tell if it was scribbled in hash oil or bong resin.Since it's from Nathan "Kunta" Korte, an old surfin campadre of mine, it's a safe bet it's one or the other. Don't sound like he's changed much over the yrs. He's still got that good ear though.
What the FUCK is UP Bro-hams? What's the werd up there in Smelladelphia? Dude, like I'm fuckin KICKIN it down here in Baja bro. It's SWEEEEET! Met some righteous bro's who know the waves well & the smoke. Tres coolage. Did Scorpion Bay & it was sick! Later I was like all (illegible due to smearing) & this dude Scotty's dick in the campfire that night! It was like a flesh mashmellow & it fuckin STANK. I was like-YO! Some maximum uncool vibes. Too much mescal, not enough herbage. Yo, you know me, I'm always like, 'whatever get's ya hard' & all, but Scotty...I dunno dude, I don't think he fuckin digs that shit. You know what I'm sayin? Fuck it though, ya know? It's a party. And I am but a fuckin vessel. Right on!
So I seen that SXSW report. You dude, what the fuck-a BLOCK of Leb hash? Are you fuckin NUTS? Snotbe, you are a fuckin MONSTER dude! I fuckin love it! Wh (Illegible) bum's hand. Them TNV kids sound gnarled up. Do I know Ranger X? He sounds like an evil bro. Claymore's scare the fuck outta me. That's some sick mojo.
But check this out, that band you were fuckin diggin, the Los Llamarada's? Dude, we got their lp! It came fallin outta this pinata. Dude it was soooo twisted, this thing was filled w/doobs, painkillers, speed, hash oil tinnies & this lp. All of it spillin out & I was all like 'Holy Shit'! I got fired up & then was like checkin out their sound & fuckin thought of you. Their gnar-gnar is eerie & jammed up in some black hole jabber rot, alot like (as you said-yr fukin good Couldbe) Earcom era Prats face-first stumble forth ack-ack-acktion. And like the fuckers you work with-Der TPK and Times New Vicodin & even them Shadow Ring dudes-there's no fuckin pretense. It just IS. You either wrap yr brain around it or it's like, ya know, fuck off! There was this sticker on mine about 3 (illegible. sorry, much of this letter is smeared beyond comprehension) panese anymore? That was like, what 30 yrs ago or something? But fuck, that's cool, the dude get's it. I gotta get over to Monterrey & see these fuckers. I bet they're radilicious. Fuck you for seein them 1st. Ju (illegible) ng. How did that S-S dude find them? I bet he's fuckin stoked. It's a baked lp dude, fuckin serious carnage gettin laid out. I wish I had 8 thumbs so I could stick'em up in the air like a set of dog tits. RAAAAAD!
Man, you gotta come down here bro-daddy. You still got yr board? Dude, I thought I seen yr (illegible) her in Belize? That creeped me out to the max.
Anysnooze, Los Llamarada's LP. It's cooks. Like a spoon fulla the sweetest China White & just as addictive. And it's fuckin pressed on white vinyl too. What's that word, sublimasomethin? Fuck it, you know what I mean. This shit is wiggin me out! I gotta motor dude. Stay high or say goodbye. Later daze Spudbe!
(contact the label at http://www.s-srecords.com/ & the band at www.myspace.com/losllamarada)
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
I got a whole mess've 7"ers layin around what need to be sorted out so here goes.
Sic Alps-Semi Streets ep (Skulltones)
The label's description of this read like I was in for a Psychedelic bumout so when it arrived & my ears proved to me it weren't the case, I was a happy lad. Sic Alps masterfully layer their crud for the short & sweet on here, the results bein a Whoopie Pie concocted w/ingredients culled from a recipe involvin Wire, Strapping Fieldhands & Tyrannosaurus Rex. Who makes up the crème filled center is unknown. I ingest shit this good w/my eyes closed. The best Skulltones release thus far.
Clockcleaner-Frogrammer/Early Man (Richie Records)
Don't know if they's dumbin it down for the KBD collectors out there, but Clockcleaner's cover of the Remo Voor classic is as solid as bacon on a burger. Singer John Sharky even perfected the english-as-a-second-language vocal quiver for more authentic Euro-trash inflection. Sounds like they made him sing it while sippin schnapps on a stair climber. Hey, whatever it takes, right? The flip is more familiar territory, replete w/leering angst & rhythmic saunter, you just know trouble's on the loose. So when they go & set fire to a shed full've No Trend corn dogs, you can't help but cheer'em along. That kind've menace ain't around much these days, so it's good to know there's at least one bunch've sonic vigilantes doin their part. Chalk up another winner for Alap Momin & Faggot Fishsticks.
Meercaz-Unlust/Lovesick (Point Wrex)
I think there guys hail from somewhere in Oregon but their vim & vigor don't remind me in no ways of a band w/a Pacific Northwest return address. Rather, it sounds like they was weened on a ranch somewhere's in the midwest, halfway between Lawrence, Kansas & Cleveland, Ohio. Which might explain why they's resemble a mix of Starvation Army & Mortal Micronotz. I dunno, it's a decent stop for a breather but I don't feel like stickin around till dinner. My metabolism ain't what it used to be.
Crappy Nightmaresville-Neutron Dracula/Black Beam Dub
Yet another free wheelin cadre of Black Velvet players whose names & nodes overlap in both Sapat & Kark. On the a-side they shine w/the playful dexterity akin to a riverboat William Breuker Kollektief while the flip hovers & rumbles like an ICP rehearsal inside a storm cloud. In fact, if you'd told me this come from one of them old ICP flexi's I wouldn't have flinched. Dedicated to the memory of the late, great bassist David Sauter whose presence & determination helped make up the core of the Black Velvet Fuckere aesthetic. Long may they chooge.
GHQ/Ex Cocaine-split (Not Not Fun)
Marcia Bassett & Pete Nolan is like the Lon Chaney & Boris Karloff of the New blankity-blank whateveritscalled. They's both don various sonic disguises within the genre of which they are synonomous & are lauded 'n championed for their efforts. As well they should be. In GHQ they appear together, along w/Steve Gunn (ex Pancake Flipper) & the results here (culled from a live performance) have a lovely, sustained, minimalist/psychedelic vibe that must have been beauteous to behold in person. I'd like to hear more. Ex Cocaine deviate from their smokey guitar-lead folkest freakust for a few minutes of sustained free hand drumming that's impressive enough that the Ouija board was tricked into spellin out the name M-i-l-f-o-r-d-G-r-a-v-e-s. Their next lp is gonna be right here on Siltbreeze & if you ever wondered what a cross between Dead C & Stone Harbour would sound like, you'll have your answer in May.
Plat Ypus-Introduzione Parts 1 & 3 (Octane Grammophon)
Superb out there electro/percussion free-ride from a new to me Finnish duo. It's dense & loose; the electronics circle & dive while the drumming keeps a cockeyed yet steady time sorta like what you imagine 'No Pussyfooting' might've sounded like if a tipsy Jaki Liebezeit had invaded the sessions. Supposedly only a 100 of these worldwide. If they's got anything else available, my door is open.
Sex/Vid-Tania ep (Dom America)
If there is one genre nowadays that I'd absolutely dismiss it's be Hardcore but every now & again I come up against someone's what makes me eat my words. This time it'd be this awesome quartet outta Olympia, Wa what call themselves Sex/Vid. They got a great halcyon sound that recalls the action found on the ground floor of Fatal Erection, Touch & Go or Dischord back when 3$ ppd. meant somethin. If I hadn't heard it myself I'd have never thunk it possible. I'm impressed. Ding! Score one for the punkies.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
I was planning on spendin last week in Zurich goin over my various accounts & whatnot when a call came in from Craig Stewart concernin me & SXSW. "We could really use you down here this year Roland. What's it gonna take"? Now some of you might know Craig. I'd never had the pleasure. But I could tell behind that mellow drawl he was one wily Texan. We discussed money, accommodations, my contribution, basically touchin on all the corners that any two respectin horsetraders would hit. After a spell, we worked out a deal that suited us both. I was especially charmed by Craig's wry closer "I'll even throw in sunlight & warm weather". My contacts in Bern had been tellin me earlier how cold & miserable it was over there. Fuck it. Switzerland was gonna have to wait 'cause I was headed for Austin, TX.
I don't know if any you's has seen the TV show about Southwest Airlines but them flight attendants are an irreverent bunch. One of'em will say something like "shift happens" & that'll have passengers rollin in the aisles! What a gut buster they is. This time though I encountered a different, darker side of humor at the hands of the beloved airline. Our main flight attendant was this beanpole fella what looked like George Gervin (circa ABA) & when he got on to tellin us the safety features of the plane, something sounded wrong. It was like he was drunk but he weren't. This Iceman seemed to have a 2nd set of teeth, or an extra long tongue, or the inside of his mouth had been filled w/caramel & Oragel. Whatever it was, you could not understand a single utterance comin over that microphone. I had to laugh at the subtlety of the gallows wit on display. While Southwest was bein all PC, they was also insinuatin "do you really think a little yellow life preserver & a flimsy seat cushion are going to save you from flaming death in the event of a crash? Well, neither do we"! Bravo Southwest. Muchos Perfectos.
After about a 9 hour lay over in Houston (damn thunderstorms, I was beginnin to wonder if Craig had sold me a cat in a bag) I made it to Austin and was met by an old crony of mine (let's call him-Ranger X) who I hadn't seen since our days in Beirut at the top of the 80's. What I was doin over there is still classified, but his deal was runnin hashish outta the Bekaa Valley. He'd then sell it to someone who job it was to pass it on to the CIA & from there it would end up at Wright Patterson over to Dayton, OH. From there it'd get channeled to some, uh, "Good Fellas" & the rest I hope you's can piece together for yourself. Dicey day's for sure! Anyhow, Ranger X had been livin down to Austin for 20 some yrs & was gonna be my tour guide, chaperone & host for this adventure. Only snag was I had to stay in some deer blind of his what overlooked a patch of "medical" marijuana he growed for some "doctor". "Don't worry" he said, "I got claymore's set over the perimeter. That'll keep the varmints & bums away. And if not, there's an old Mauser behind the headboard. Remember, always aim for the head. But we'll worry about that later. Let's go rock".
We made it down to the Sixth Street & man was it ever crowded! Them streets was blocked off solid & though there was a modicum of police presence, the element of danger seemed palpable. Not ominous (like Phillip K. Dick), more obnoxious (like Andy Dick). We made our way to some bar & seen Hank IV deliver some serious skiffle laced Panic Rock. That poor drifter from the Bum-Kon site was right; singer Bob Macdonald has got some moves. It was as if he was part shark; he had to keep movin or he'd die. Them fingers kept goin from his crotch to his lips a few too many times for me, but it beat stumblin in on Lou givin Rachel a blowjob so I didn't say nothin. The twin guitar attack was indeed exceptional & the rhythm section was stellar to boot. A fine way to start the festivities. From there we went somewhere's else & seen Pink Reason. They was pretty killer as well, a much more sonically dense & angular version live as to what's on 'Cleaning The Mirror' . I met the main fella Kevin & he was right nice, introducin me & Ranger to all the band members. They was all real young too. Then we was introduced to even more young dudes what was in a band called Electric Bunnies. Them & Pink Reason seemed to be runnin together-along w/the guys from Psychedelic Horseshit-& I couldn't keep track. They was all the time sneerin & pullin hard on cigarettes. It was like an SE Hinton novel come to life. At some point they all hightailed it to a diaper snappin contest(very exclusive) while we ended up to some Hank IV party. By now it was gettin on into the next mornin. Them Hank IV fella's know how to start the day; they had a whole breakfast buffet set up! Eggs as many way's as you could imagine, pancakes, alligator frittata (yum), grits, fresh fruit...it was a feed. And the drinks; mimosa's, bellini's, some sort of a cactus martini....Man, somebody was gonna get 'got got' here for sure. Met that Libbey Adams woman again. we reaquainted ourselves as she chowed down on a pancake what had bacon crumbled up in it, while drinkin a Texas Twister (tequila, grapefruit & sparkling water). I was more intrigued by the savory pancake. "Oh I use plenty of butter & syrup too" declared Ms. Adams, "but adding the bacon just helps get the job done faster. It's something I picked up from Ricky Williams years ago". Toiling Midget pancakes....I love it! From there the facts blur. Somehow we got back to Ranger X's place for some much needed shuteye. Later on, we managed to get in 9 holes of chip 'n putt golf w/the Holy Mountain label fella. Nice guy too. He was familiar w/the Bekaa Valley which made Ranger X somewhat nervous ("he looks like someone I killed over there", Ranger X confided later, "not only that, he has the mannerisms of an assassin. We better be careful around him"). After that,the 3 of us held our own awards ceremony over to the Green Mesquite w/some fried catfish & pitchers of beer. From there we was off to see Suishou No Fune who played a short set of fuzzy, interstellar, twin guitar overdrive. Them two made me laugh. They was dressed head to toe in black leather & watchin'em make those guitars weep, they reminded me of the Grackles what's all over Austin (sort of like a cross between a crow & blackbird), chirpin & hootin it up from tree to tree. Later we caught a great Urinals set, some more Pink Reason & watched Psychedelic Horseshit DESTROY a crowd of about 30 dumbfounded new fans. I say new 'cause after the set the band ended up sellin out ALL the stuff they'd brought along. Gone! After that I began to fade. I'd been gluggin down Tecate & Petrone's most of the day & it was catchin up. Also, someone had given me some peyote candy & it was doin a number on my noggin. At one point I had this vision of myself in the future, sellin insurance on an Indian reservation. What is going on? Ain't no Indian what want's to buy insurance! I might just as well try & sell ice to Eskimos. Anyway, the futility of that "trip" was bringin me down. So I went back to the deer blind to even out. On my way I ran into them Electric Bunnies fellas who said they was off to a spin-the-bottle party that Larry Clark was sponsorin. I'll bet he is! But I was gettin more & more horizontal. I flagged down one of the bike ricksaws, made my way back to HQ & snored my way into Nod.
Next mornin I woke up to find Ranger X & the Holy Mountain dude had become fast friends. Seems Holy Mountain (I never did catch his name) had a daddy what was an operative w/Ranger X back in the day. Sure is a small world sometimes! We was all jonesin for BBQ, so Ranger X took us down to Gonzales, TX for some sausages & brisket. It took a little over an hour to get there, but boy was it worth it. We went to the Gonzales Food Market & if you's ever get down that way, it certainly demands a visit. We got ourselves a mess of food, then Ranger X took us off to some mysterious ranch to pig out. It was way off the beaten path & it was spectacular to be surrounded by such tranquility. Then as I was feedin on a rack've smoked lamb, I seen a turtle move across in front of some cactus, followed by a hawk flyin out've a mesquite tree w/a snake in it's talon's. What the fuck am I, Billy Jack? It had to be some sort of sign. All's I needed now was to look down & see some Horn Toad givin me directions. Right about then Holy Mountain said we had to get goin back up to the action as he had a showcase what was to start soon. I hear ya! We got ourselves into town just as Blues Control's set got underway. What can I tell you? They was as great as I'd hoped. The waves of strings, effects & keyboards was more clear & crystalline than I'd have expected. They killed-beautifully. After that Wooden Shjips took the stage & proceeded to throw down a psychedelic reenactment of The Battle Of Agincourt where they seize the day, destroy Spacemen 3 & deliver the spirit of Thirteenth Floor Elevators back to their rightful home. Me & Ranger X skedaddled up from there to see Times New Viking light a fuse & blow up a bunch've drunk Bubba's who was waitin to see Peaches. From there Clockcleaner took over & whatever was left alive they pulverized into Lone Star dogshit. Wow, things was really movin! But Ranger X was hittin a wall. He was havin a swell time, but as he's gettin on in years, it was time to retreat. As we was on our way back we ran into Adam from TNV who said he was on his way to a glue sniffers parade & asked us to come along. We demurred & opted for late night Cobb Salad's at Kerbey Lane. I ain't one much for glue these days (shoe polish is way more organic).
Next day we took Holy Mountain to the airport, but not before hittin the best eatin yet which was a Taqueria named La Playa. This place ruled. The best Al Pastor, Barbacoa & Lengua taco's I's ever ate. And the surprise hit was the Ceviche & Cameron tostada's. Mucho magnifeco. Everything was so good me & Ranger X stopped by on our way back & ate again! After that we seen Times New Viking ignite a parking lot at a record store w/a scorchin afternoon set (that you can watch over to the Matablog) then it was off to check on Ranger X's "garden". Seems durin all these festivities there'd been some ruckus. A couple of the claymore's had been detonated; we found the splattered remains of a raccoon & an old bum's hand what had been blown off. There was sobbin comin out of a row of bushes which we could only guess came from the (now) one-handed culprit. Ranger X was madder than a wet hen! He was screamin at the bushes, threatenin to get his pistol but leveler heads (mine) prevailed. We reset the claymore's & headed off to see Jandek.
Yes, Jandek. I figured this was gonna be the emperor's new clothes in extremis. A church full've bespectacled, sweaty fan boys didn't make the charge any less likey either. But I'll be damned, that Jandek put on a goddamn good show. Set up as a quartet -2 guitars, harmonium & drums-it was suprisingly compellin. Jandek's open chord strum navigated the way & when he wasn't singin, it almost sounded like Fushitsusha. When he got to the mike he sounded like, well, himself. There was no mistakin the voice. I seen tear ducts open on a few men in the pews. Seems like an apropros setting for an epiphany I reckon. But we was gettin thirsty & on our way out ran across Jared & Beth from TNV what was headed to a showcase for Columbus Discount Records. Okay, let's! Got there around 9pm & ordered a round of beers as Terribly Empty Pockets got started. They played & played, we got another round of drinks, they played some more. It seemed like they'd been goin for an hour or so when I checked my watch to see the time. It was 9:08. We got the fuck outta there-fast! They's all went to Rusted Shut, me & Ranger X went to see Whose Your Favorite Son, God? Thankfully for us, there was plenty of seats available. I didn't know squat about the band, but the name was so ridiculous I had to check'em out. It was 3 dudes from Sacto; two thin Ichabod Crane looking guys on guitars sportin matchin Magma t-shirts(!) & a snaggly beardo drummer what sang. Their sound is somethin like prog-metal. Imagine if that armadillo tank on the cover of 'Tarkus' came to life & started to fire away. They was cool. Next up was the best band I seen all weekend, Los Llamarada. They was 4 Mexican teens from Monterrey & they slithered out a loose, noisy set of crud that was somethin like 'Forming' era Germs meet's Brian Gregory era Cramps meets Earcom era Prats. There was about 10 of us in the room & we was all spellbound. They could've pushed us over w/a feather. Muchos Fantasticos. Later as they was packin up, Jared TNV was tryin to talk to them about baseball. They just looked at him, pointed at their fingers & laughed. "Beisbol", they said, was for pussies. They was into diamond rings. Jared stood there, stunned. He looked like he'd been probed by an alien. Maybe he had. The kids from Los Llamarada lit up cigarettes & laughed even harder. Then suddenly they was gone. Poof! Vanished into thin air. I heard the word "Chupacabra" right before they disappeared. There was somethin sinister goin on & I liked it. Maybe that new lp of theirs on S-S will open some more doors to their mystery.
And with that we was done. Kaput. El Finisho. Ranger X gathered us all up (me, TNV & the Psychedelic Horseshit boys) & took us to an undisclosed location where we had a roarin bonfire, smoked a brick of 25 yr old Lebanese hash, drank mescal & howled at the moon. It was a fitting end to a fantastic week. Then I heard gunfire off in the distance. I walked over to see Ranger X w/the TNV kids shootin that Mauser. They'd gone & nailed the severed hand of that bum to a tree & was takin turns firin at it. It was just gettin better 'n better. I sat down for a respit & then next thing I knew, the sandman punched my light out.
I woke up to the sound of my cell phone. It was the 1st it'd rang since I got down there. It was Craig Stewart. "Meet me at the La Playa on South Congress" he instructed. You bet! If nothin else, the man has good taste. Me & Ranger X made our way there. As we entered, we seen a fella w/a mop of red hair & a pleasant face what was beckonin us over. It was Craig. We ordered a mess of food (them shrimp fajitas I could kill for) & as we was finishin up, Craig slid a check to my direction. "I signed it & left it blank" he said, "make it out for whatever you feel it's worth". Man, what a cool customer this Craig Stewart is! I've been charmed by some slick dudes in my day but this guy was up there in the front row. I looked at the check, thought about it for a minute, then tore the things in half. He knowed I would too. It had been a priceless experience. We smiled & shook hands. As we was pullin out to get to the airport I seen Craig shoot us some old secret agent hand code. "See...you...both...next...year" it read. We nodded our heads yes & shot back the thumbs up. Your Goddamn right you will!
(all the aforementioned bands-maybe even Jandek-can be reached via MySpace if you wanna look'em up).
(Here are some sites for the places we ate. Not a dud in the bunch; www.kerbeylanecafe.com, www.laplayataqueria.com , www.greenmesquite.net & www.gonzalesfoodmarket.com)
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
At the risk of losing a fistful of transparent readers, I hereby admit that I have not been payin that much (as in no) attention to the latest releases of everyone's favorite white knight, Sir Jandek Of Corwood. So if I'd incidentally heard this Unborn Unicorn lp-say, at an exclusive brandy tasting showcase-& been spoofed by someone that it was the J-man's latest, I probably wouldn't have questioned it (not right away) & continued to fill my snifter. If however it had been brought to my attention beforehand via an enthusiastic dorkus as "an lp by a gloomy lo-fi Folk/Psych dude" I'd have no doubt chortled my drink & exited the premises forthwith. I know, you can't take me anywhere! But who want's to deal w/such vague vanity-driven irritations when attempting to grasp the subtle complexities of a fine Napoleon or VSOP? Those things cost a fortune (the spirits I mean, but shitty Psych records ain't cheap neither)! Thankfully no such event was takin place. Not on a grand scale anyhow. It was just me, a bottle of Calvados (for the throat, I've been feelin poorly), 2 cats & this Unborn Unicorn record. Bein a nice day 'n all, the feline's was screamin to go outside. Their caterwaul was sorta like somethin off one of them Magik Markers cdr's you'd find wrapped in a brown paper sack. But bein cat's afterall, they got an excuse. Once I got'em out the door I was waitin for the suck to start on this Unicorn record. But it weren't to be. The thing fluttered, got a good gust of wind behind it & remained airborne over the entirety of both sides. Now I ain't sayin it was flyin high-not w/all the junk he's got onboard-but it's trajectory could shave a head or two from the level it maintains. The Jandek thing was only a minor, initial gripe-like when you think you smell gas but it's really cat piss-& once it settled in, it started takin on a creepier Cali desert kind've vibe. Like if Bobby Brown had a stalker 'cause some dusted trust funder thought he heard the voice of God on 'The Enlightening Beam Of Axona' lp & wanted to take it back. In also made me get up, go find (& play) the Ziggy Stardust Band lp-not Bowie, but in fact the work of a bonafide schizo who thought he was-get this-Bowie's brother! It exists, just ask John Allen-where everything comes overloaded to the max, the result bein sort've slurred & fuzzy. In that way it also resembles the Michio Kadotani cd 'Rotten Telepathies' you know, 'Ultra Pyschedelic' & what have you. I just realized, in all these comparisons I ain't yet mentioned someone that seemed to possess even a modicum of social skills. And I guess Unborn Unicorn weren't no walk in the park neither. Goin under the human name of Aaron Coyes, I heard tell this guy was just about as annoying of a guest as you'd ever not want to visit while he was over in Australia makin this record. Some claim he'd set himself on fire just to get a beer. Man, I hear that & all's I can think is...I miss the Bowery! Imagine if you was to go back & give all them bums there guitars, effects petals, hook'em up & yell 'PLAY"! Some say that's how CBGB's got famous but that kinda revisionist history I ain't into. Yet. That said, this Unborn Unicom lp is a pretty great land-on-your-feet contemporary addition to the pantheon of muzzy solo panhandlers who like Icarus, flitted close to the sun long enough to leave a startling imprint before crashing back to earth in flames. I guess what I'm sayin is I doubt the next effort will add up to much, so if he stops now, at least he's battin 1000%. And there ain't everyone can say they did that.
(Get the lp stateside via www.flippedoutrecords.com, contact the label at; email@example.com)
Thursday, March 08, 2007
Way back in a magical period I like to refer to as my college days, I had this class what was about Herman Melville. He was quite a character as I remember, traveled all over the world, exotic locales, a successful writer, never any record of nefarious womanizing or of bein a drunkard. In the brash of my youth, he seemed someone to emulate. But then I come to find that he weren't such a big deal after all. Moby Dick, the book widely considered to be the greatest American novel of all time, didn't do shit in Melville's time & by the end he was more like the disenfranchised character in 'Bartleby The Scrivener', pushin a pen in some anonymous customhouse. That didn't sound so romantic. "Fuck it" I said, "who needs them sort of heroes"? I may never write somethin like Moby Dick, but by the same token, I sure ain't gonna be responsible for nothin like 'Clarel' either!
So here I am,deep in the middle's of my years, when I get's this book about the Transcendentalists & it turns out to be a merry ol' read. The one part that was saucy was where the writer was goin on about how Melville was ruined by an unrequited & all consumin affection for Nathaniel Hawthorne. So that was the problem. He had a touch of the 'Lavender Flu'! But then there ain't no more about it. The author makes this dramatic posit & then goes onto somethin else. Maybe they was just close friend's is all. They say Lincoln slept w/men all the time, but that was to keep warm. Them was funny times back then. Hell, they used to drink port wine WITH dinner! Can you imagine? Honestly, I think I'd almost rather cuddle up to Honest Abe.
Now what does any of this have to do w/record writin your wonderin? The answer is...not much! Except that part about Melville bein transfixed by Hawthorne & it bein his ruination 'n all. That's kind've how I see myself & Blues Control. I can't stop listenin to'em or thinkin about'em! Not since this lp on Woodsist nestled itself onto my turntable. I can't get nothin done till I wrap my noggin 'round this. I feel a stirrin in my loins as well, but that's probably from the frog legs in the paella I ate last night (good too). Them cassettes was great ethereal works that transcended the medium, but hearin the beauteous deconstruction of 'Puff', you'd almost think that the vinyl format had been created solely for this lp. That's what's got me so....vexed. I am like Pan to Blues Control's Apollo. Whatever outrageous prose I might spill out onto this Blog ,the loyal shall come forth to read & to weep, either out of laughter or sorrow for that is it's humble goal. But the music of Blues Control, as evidenced on this record, is a master work explodin. It germinates absolutely from the bowels of the Blues but erupts via a postmodern portal; there are gorgeous sheens of rust that fissure throughout, harmonica's smoke in the distance, guitars splatter, keyboards ooze white hot neo psychedelic lava, in the end, like the music emitted from Apollo's lyre, it is a devastatingly wondrous experience. And as much as I hear the (non specific) PSF or Akiyama buzz, to me Blues Control seem beget from the prominent clang & snarl of Dead C, who was beget by This Heat, who was beget by Faust, from whose seed it all originated. And that's nothin to sneeze about, unless you's is allergic to greatness. A cd on Holy Mountain is next. They's on tour right now too, so drop everything & go see'em! I know it's early, but 'Puff' seems a shoe-in for one of the year's best.
Sunday, March 04, 2007
Recently I received a terse (but droll) email from Hyped2Death founder Chuck Warner sayin something to the effect "I'm tired of being a bridesmaid & never the bride on Siltblog. A few mentions of the Messthetics cd's but no real overall coverage. What do I have to do, send a promo package"? But before I could say 'Dan Electro' arrive a package did, replete w/all 3 of the current incarnations. The dedication to the D.I.Y. modus weren't lost on Chuck (or myself); they come sans cases, so to get'em gussied up, I had to sit down & DO IT MYSELF. Touche Chuck, nicely played. The next round of Communion wine spritzers is on me.
All kiddin aside, Chuch Warner is w/o a doubt the owner/curator of the largest 'public' collection of DIY music what's known to exist. He's was a diehard fan of the genre long before our 1st encounters in the mid 80's & he's been floggin these set's for yrs,1st on cassette, then cdr's & now full on, new-boots'n-panties cd's. As I mentioned above there's 3 what's available in this new '100' series & each is a joy to behold. I always say if nothin else, these compilation's make drivin the car a veritable goddamn pleasure. And I have had my share of arduous drive's & traffic jams lately so take it from me-I KNOW. That business earlier this yr up on I-78? I was there. Smack dab in the middle. Let me tell ya, Funboy Five's 'Complusive Eater' track took on a whole new meanin for them 20 hrs I sat idle. I may never eat another Ding Dong as long as I live but I sure was happy to find a box of'em in the glove compartment! Anyway, like I was sayin...
For those of us what's been on board for a while, there's alot of spillover but that's to be expected. The real change here is the excellent graphics & repro's of sleeves, jackets & band photo's as well as the painstakingly great archival liner notes. Not to mention link's to website's of bands & labels what's active in the here & now. On the audio front, each volume has a couple or three previously unreleased demo's or alternate tracks that're-at the very least-interesting to hear. For instance, it was odd hearin a "crunchy' take on the Dry Rib track 'Quail Seed' after havin my ears tuned to the 7" version all these yrs & bein a Lines fan myself, it was a treat to get to checkout an unreleased track of theirs. And hadn't I been privy to this collection, it might've taken me a couple more yrs to know that Acute Records has a 3 cd Lines retrospective on the way (http://www.acuterecords.com/)! When it come's to highlights, well we's all got our favorite's. Personally there ain't none I don't appreciate, though I am prone to repeatin tracks by Auntie Pus, Dad, Different I's, Milkshake Melon, Exhibit A, MLR & Vacants. And I ain't gonna level a peep of criticism neither, 'cept to say that as catchy as the Tronics 'Shark Fucks' is, it'd sure be nice if their 'Diver' track off the 'Snoopies v/a lp might be compiled on one of these here collections someday.
Don't know what else there is to say. This is a great series that just keeps gettin better. What's more, if we all mind our pints 'n quarts -& Chuck keep's on diggin-there may even be dvd's to accompany these dudes someday. I wouldn't rule it out.
(These cd's are available direct from; http://www.hyped2death.com/)