No doubt some of you's out there is familiar w/Chris Johanson the artist. From what I was told by a man wearing a beret & sipping pernod, he comes for the disembodied school of Raymond Pettibon. Sorry Shirley, I've had to work most of my life, so excuse me if I weren't there the day they passed out snuff & showed you how to prance around w/a stick up your ass. All's I know from what I've seen of his work it there ain't no Gumby's or Manson's & that's fine by me. Then there's the Chris Johanson what's the mastermind behind perhaps the single most exciting vanity label goin (sorry Corwood), Awesome Vistas, whose 1st release was Sic Alps 'Description Of The Harbor' 12" (the artwork c/o Mr. J himself). Since then a spate of new one's has hit the street, all in small editions, each lovingly assembled. The jackets are silkscreened by different artist's or band members, the paper stock bein a heavy gauge what's near cardboard that's perfect for the sometimes elaborate screens what is laid down. To date I think there's seven releases & it's anyone's guess if more's to come. As it states on one of the inserts, "there is no way to contact Awesome Vistas". You might say they's along the lines of them Morant Tapes series of 10" lathe cuts from a couple yrs back except this is high grade 12" vinyl dudes. I ain't had a problem w/none of'em, actually I've enjoyed them all & considerin what a mixed bag they was, that's sayin somethin. But seein as how I've only been back to North America & home but a week now, I need to get my sleep patterns up to EST. So I've asked a couple Irish buddies of mine, Gerald Fitzpatrick & Patrick Fitzgerald to guest "curate" this column. Personally, I think the point/counterpoint buddy thing is insipid & lazy, so if this at anytime starts to read like the C&D column outta Arthur, you'll know where this idea come from. There ain't no reason for these 2 to be pseudonymous though. If you gotta problem with what they think, just stop on by to get your ass whupped, that's fine.
Enablers-The Achievement (1 sided lp, AV-01)
GF; (shaking a Belfast Bomber) Whatya know about Enablers?
PF; (lighting a cigarette & bats out the match) Well, they say me grandmother was responsible for me uncle Brian bein a nasty cur & me grandfather's hopeless alcoholism.
GF; (agitated) Not them ya twit, the band!
PF; (gently pouring a can of Guinness into a pint glass) ah, this record we're a hearin now. I like the voice, it's quite Welsh soundin (laughs).
GF; Ya, it's some voice, a fella by the name'a Peter Simonelli.
PF; Right, one'a them.
GF; (curious) One'a who?
PF; An I'tal.
GF; (rolling his eyes), Jesusmaryandjoseph, what's his heritage got to do w/all the tea in China?
PF; Dunno, just sayin's all.
GF; Well, it's a story put to music. Very San Francisco, ya can almost smell the Mission.
PF; (squinting, confused) Smell the missus?
GF; (yelling) THE MISSION! You know, the Mission district. The music takes me there too, very Toiling Midgets in a way.
PF; (pouring a Jameson) Ya, I hear it, very Saccharine Trust as well.
GF; (himself pouring a Jameson) Your right! Good on ya (they clink glasses in a toast).
PF: (browsing the insert) There's a paragraph here where he's on about a tranny goin mental. Do ya recall the time we was lost in San Fran & ended up in the poofter bar?
GF; (exhaling a cigarette) I do.
PF; And the poor bugger who was buyin ya drinks & asked to give ya a blowjob? And ya dropped him with a punch?
GF; (inhales the cigarette again, looks away & exhales); Ya, twas a tough call. No way for him to know I didn't need the work!
(GF & PF crack up)
Linda Hagood-Pink Love Red Love (Av-06)
PF; (snorting a line of cocaine off this lp jacket, then picking it up for closer inspection) Christ, this is a cover, innit?
GF; (head titled back & holding his nose) Ya, it's quite good. I thought ya said you know this woman, didn't ya say twas a bartender?
PF; (confused) Fucked her?
GF; (squinting at PF) What?
GF; (voice rising, eyes darting) The singer, here the artist in question, Linda Hagood! You'd drink at her bar, yes?
PF; (swirling an iced glass of Bailey's) Ya, indeed, the Confederate bartender. Lovely girl. Didn't know she made music.
GF; (smoking a cigarette, looking at insert, sweating) Ya, she pretty much does it all on this one.It's quite good, funny as well, reminds me a bit of something you might get from Yoshimi. "Trippy" ya might say.
PF; (teasingly) Ah so......
GF; (staring directly at PF) I suppose now you speak Japanese do ya?
PF; (gesturing w/left hand) Vely rittle (laughs)
GF; (laughing) That's ridiculous. You reckon we could say this was a psychedelic record?
PF; (exhaling cigarette) I do.
GF; (teasingly) But you also think that mushroom's on a cut of beefsteak is psychedelic as well, ya?
PF; (tilts head forward, blows smoke directly into face of GF) I think your mother thinks so, that's what I think.
GF; (incensed, stands up) My MOTHER? Let me tell ya somethin about my mother (charges PF, fistfight ensues).
Dragging An Ox Through Water-The Tropics Of Phenomenon (Av-07)
GF; (uncorking a magnum of malt duck) Aye, this isn't bad, a one man affair is it?
PF; (holding plastic champagne flute, looking at insert) I thought ya meant the bubbly (laughs). I reckon it is, hard to read this blasted fine print. Ya, here it says 'all instruments, etc, by Brian'.
GF; (pours & fills 2 flutes, they clink glasses) I'd say he owe's a bit to Mayo Thompson's 'Cory's Debt To His Father' lp.
PF; (lights cigarette, downs malt duck, pours a Jameson) Your onto something, I do declare. Sounds like he's a bit of an experimenter.
GF; (downs the cold duck) What, you reckon he's poof?
PF; (knocks back the whiskey) Proof? What proof?
GF; (smoking cigarette) I said HE"S POOF.
PF; (squints) Where's your proof?
GF (visibly frustrated) Christ, that's what ya said! Now I'm confused.
PF; Is that right? Last time I checked ya was Gerald Fitzpatrick. Confused is no name for an Irishman. Folks'll take ya for poof.
Thee Oh Sees-Peanut Butter Oven ep (AV-04)
PF; (mixing a gin & tonic sans ice) Aye, what's this your playin? Sounds freaky.
GF; (snorting a small pile of cocaine off the back of his fist) Umm, ah, Thee Oh Sees. Ya, it's quite good. It's a band w/this legendary SF bloke, John Dwyer.
PF; (takes a long pull on his drink followed by his cigarette, exhales) Right, Coachwhips fella. This is quite spastic, brilliant rhythm section, infectious to say the least.
GF; (pogoing in front of turntable, boths hands out & batting like flippers) Ya, they're hard not to like. And this Dwyer chap is daft, his mind seems to race constantly. And this guitar on 'Quadrospazzled', aye, it's like a cross between Ward Dotson & Karl Precoda. A long way from Pink & Brown. Ya remember Pink & Brown?
PF; (drains cocktail, pours Jameson, lights cigarette, bats out match) Pink & Brown? (squints) Your knickers ya mean?
GF (remains dancing, breathing heavily, head shoots sharply around to left, stares at PF, confused) Whot in the bloody hell are ya on about?
PF; (teasingly) Them knickers of yours. (exhales smoke) by the time your finished w/that spastic dancin they're to be pink & brown! (convulses in laughter)
GF (stops dancing, walks over to bar & picks up empty gin bottle. sneaks up behind PF who is still in laughing uncontrollably & whacks his in the head, knocking him to the ground) Is that right? Ya know I've a spastic colon & I asked ya to keep it to yerself, aye?
PF; (groggily) Aye, ya did. Pass us a fag, ya?
GF; (hands him a cigarette) Here ya'are. A whiskey then?
PF; (smiles) Ya, could do.
GF; (pours 2 whiskeys, they toast); To a fine record.
PF; Aye, a fine record indeed.
Jackie-O Motherfucker-The Cryin' Sea (AV-03)
*Note; At this point both men are barely coherent. Faced w/imminent blackout, the lads resort to the last move left in their arsenal; quote verbatim from the pages of Finnegan's Wake.
GF; A spathe of calyptrous glume involucrumines the perinanthean Amenta.
PF; fungoalgaceous muscafilicial graminopalmular plan-teon; of increasing, livivorous, feelful thinkamalinks
GF; luxuriotia— ting everywhencewithersoever among skullhullows and charnel
PF; cysts of a weedwastewoldwevild when Ralph the Retriever ranges to jawrode his knuts knuckles and her theas thighs.
GF; one-gugulp down of the nauseous forere brarkfarsts oboboomaround and you’re as paint and spickspan as a rainbow
PF; wreathe the bowl to rid the bowel; no runcure, no rank heat, sir; amess in amullium; chlorid cup.
Hey thanks fellas! That was, uh, somethin.........
Awesome Vistas is distributed by Revolver USA, contact email@example.com
to find out all about'em. PLEASE-the Sic Alps & Thee Oh Sees is now OOP, so no need to bug him where they's concerned.