Monday, July 31, 2006
The letter's just keep comin! This one's from out in the Buckeye state. More show reviews! More harshness! Is is gettin hot in here or is it just me? Maybe someday somebody'll post something nice, but until then, keep your knives sharpened & your ear to the ground.
Been checkin your shit out. Pretty good. Reminds me of an old local fanzine from the Midwest called The Offense. Ever hear of it? I was a contributor once upon a time, and I too thrived on subjectivity. I won't enlighten with details. Could be too much for you. I was hipped to your thing by the drummer from Times New Viking & he was right, it's a fun read. The other night I went to see a band that your sweet on called Angry Angles. They played with a band called Digital Leather. I liked that name, suggestively gay & punk. Like the old days. They were here in town-Columbus, OH in case you were wondering- and I had been antsy to go & see something new, so the planets seemed aligned for this particular night/show. I drove down to the Bourbon Street bar, paid my 5$ & it was like a throwback to the days of Crazy Mama's and Mr. Browns, but way lamer. I see this guy skulking around dressed in black jeans & t-shirt with a sneer stretching across his face, hair in his eyes, and I had to laugh. I couldn't tell if he was going to cry or shit himself. Turns out he's in the Digital Leather band. Have you seen them yet? They are terrible. Worse than the Blackouts (I included a jpeg from an old Offense where they grace the cover), worse than System 56, worse than Sport Of Kings. Are you catching my drift? I doubt Digital Leather know of these bands, or maybe they know them too well. After all, dollar bins are everywhere. So the sneering pants shitter is on stage playing a keyboard along with a chunky, baby faced guy also dressed in black jeans/shirt and they have a drummer (not in uniform) and proceeded to simp out lame-ass dark synth punk suck that was so pretentious you could almost gag. I mean, they were trying like hell to be menacing but it was too comical. Remember Shox Lumania? Like that. Oh man, it was as if they wanted to be Chrome or Suicide but all they could manage was like Flock Of Seagulls. But worse. Thankfully is wasn't too long. The fat kid who screamed & gyrated turned out to be the main guy for your band, the Angry Angles. He seemed totally overamped and gacked out on something and boy did their performance suffer for it. Even the girl bassist shot back to him as he stormed off the stage & into the bathroom, something like "maybe crybaby needs to do some more coke." I saw Human Switchboard pull some lame shit back in the day, but this set from Angry Angles beat their pitiful drama's by a country mile. And is it really possible to take someone seriously playing a flying V guitar? It all seemed like gimmick to me. Not the cocaine (or whatever it was)-that was real enough- but the music, the look, the overpriced records they were selling. Totally affected. How did you manage to get suckered in for such obvious crap? It was as if the club was a hologram of a sad, distressing Punk Rock workshop or mockup from that Quincy episode. If they play Philadelphia I feel compelled to tell you not to waste your money, but at the same time I reason that you should go and see them since you helped me to waste mine. Thanks for nothing jerk-o. And why don't you write about something good? Like Joy Division or Magazine. I'll keep an eye peeled.
Billy Lee Buckeye
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
Whatever Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger. So You Can Go Back And Kill It.....Sun City Girls 'Djinn Funnel' LP
Since this blog was started up I have gotten a bunch've emails from folk's pleadin "how come you don't write something on the Sun City Girls"? At the risk've soundin pedantic, it's not like I don't write about'em, it's just that I ain't written anything in the blog. You should see the top of this desk! It's plum near destroyed from all the love letter's to'em that's been scratched into the surface w/keys, compasses, sissors, combs, nails, screws, coins, glass, rocks, razors, spackle blades, pen knives 'n teeth. Even our two cats, England Dan & John Ford Coley, have clawed into the back've the couch what appears to be an abstract live portrait of the band in action. Hey, we're a top shelf SCG household through & through!
Truth be told, I guess I was just waitin for the right time to blubber about their definitive grandeur. I wanted it to be something special, like an lp (not a cd), maybe even a live show (my favorite) & not one of them Cloaven cassettes that're bein reissued either (if I keep my fingers crossed for too long, will it cut off the blood circulatin to my brain?). And I'll be a goddamned motherfuckin monkey's uncle, but didn't the heavens open up yesterday w/new VINYL of live, never-before-released-to-the-public SCG material culled from 1999-2001 & on a promising new label of Egyptian/Algerian descent (Nashazphone). I wasn't privy to none of them years as a spectator, but if I turbanate my head w/a large beach towel 'n sit lotus style on one of them grass throw rugs I won up to the state fair, I can transport myself to a world where these bedazzling jams are bein played only for Moi. King me! Now I know a few folk's that'll tell you that they are longtime fans of the band but can only "appreciate" the music & not the minstrelsy. That ain't me, not by a mile. Shit, I could be happy kickin back & listenin to these guys play cribbage or callin cows so long as it's recorded where's all the banter & moves is audible. That said, this release will indubitably tickle the tastebuds right off the tongues of them lilly-livers that only go so far. For the rest of us, it's more teeth shiverin icing on yet another spectacular cake. From the opening track where your shot out like a hash bobsled through a bazaar of indeterminable chaos to the closing composition that lumbers 'n floats all the while harkening you back to the familiar like mystic sirens soothing your soggy noggin, you feel privy to a lost era of Sun City Girls exotica. And it's a pretty astounding time frame too. You could argue there's a dustin from the Placebo yrs, hints of Cloaven & a pinch're more of Majora, but really all that means is in this period, they had perfected all those spirits 'n distilled'em into this here high octane brew that is now available for consumption. I look forward to bein drunk for a few more moons to come. Feel free to join me.
Contact the band at http://www.suncitygirls.com/ & the label at; firstname.lastname@example.org
And try Aquarius, Fusetron, Forced Exposure or Eclipse for possible domestic distribution
Thursday, July 20, 2006
please forgive my tardy reply, but things have been very hectic around here(we just finished our guest room and now were preparing for carpet to beput down in our den. what fun!!!). i did have a minute last night to sneakout of the house and go see a few "bands" perform. are they still referredto as bands? it seems people kept on tossing about the term "project". idon't know about you, but project reminds me of school, and as you know i_hate_ school, and teachers too, but anyway, it all seemed very serious, ithink i even saw someone smoking one of those funny looking pipes that Sherlock Holmes used (but no, no one had on a scarf like that doctor whofella you like so much, i knew you'd ask. but i did see more than a fewgirls that looked like daleks. hahaha). i guess the fact that the "show" (ithink that words out of vogue too?!) was in a west Philadelphia basementdidn't help matters. you get a bunch of unskilled 30-somethings in a roomthat have jobs with the university and all of a sudden they're talkin' likedutch professors w/ tenure. so anyhow, i was watching (i think yourallowed to say "watch" still, right?) this spectre folk kid do his thing,and he's doing some post-modern take (sheesh, now i'm talking like one ofthose university receptionists!) Hasil Adkins thing, but in place of theone-man-band-kit, he had a laptop computer! boy, how times have changed. iwas standing next to this fella that works at the local record bin nearyou, you probably know him, he was in short pants and he's short, um. oh,that's right, you had remarked to me that one time that all the recordclerks near you were little guys, sorry, but i don't know how else todescribe him. anyhow, i say's as much to him about the haze comparison (tospectre folks credit, i do believe he's a real live hick!) and he startedsputtering out some pseudo intellectual defense for the laptop (you knowthat sorta community college lit major jabber that is far too common aroundthe bars and clubs in Philadelphia) that amounted to "lalalalalaa" in my ears. this is the same lil guy that once tried to tell me that the jesuslizard were more important than the birthday party! granted, that moviethat nick cave directed looks appalling, but given the choice btwn that andanything david yow has to offer. i mean, please! i really don't know howyou manage down there in south Philadelphia, you'd think it waspennsyltucky or something!anyway, i better run, my coffee's getting cold. keep up the good work and ihope to see you soon.best regards
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
We was sitting around the other night eatin chateaubriand's & listenin to that Bloodstains Across California record. Drinks was consumed as well. Oh the laughs! Some good stuff on that lp & not just the obvious cut's neither. So then we got to pullin out & puttin on all sort's of Cali punk stuff till eventually we was spinnin that 7" by Monitor. Then I remembered I'd got a new 7" from a band called Monitors so we played it next as a sort of call & response to see if it added up to anything. Well let me tell ya, we was all suprised by the contents. By the looks of it, I figured we was in for some dumbo Industrial noise, you know, like I couldn't just go sit out in the back yard & listen to the electric bug zapper fry mosquitoes. Same thing if ya ask me. But yo, these Monitors came pogo'n outta the speakers & sorta sounded like the Eyes, Insults, Plain Jane & The Jokes or some Geza X band who may've called Posh Boy home back in the halcyon days. Even the overall theme is a fresh throwback to less inhibited days. Four songs, all short 'n sweet & it's got all the hooks 'n charms to make it a keeper for yrs to come. Buy it now, sell it later. Who knows what the future will bring? Someday you might need to unload it to pay your oxygen bill that's overdue. Think I'm kiddin? I hope so! But in the here & now, you can inhale it while the air is free via http://www.knowcrap.com/
Friday, July 14, 2006
I'm a tad upset this morning, feelin pangs of nostalgia & a bit wistful for the green, green grass of home. See, I got this letter from my cousin Nell, Nell Young down in Arp, Tennessee. We don't communicate alot, but when we do, I realize how much I miss her company & sense of humor. You'd have to have one w/a name like that! Folk've teased her for it since almost forever, & then that movie 'Nell' come along about 10 or so yrs back & everybody started talkin to her like she was some retarded cabin girl. "I swear to fuckin Christ sake" she told me once, "if another shitbag come's up to me rockin back 'n forth sayin 'tain da wain', I will open up his belly w/my knife & show him his lunch!" Lucky for her, that movie weren't no good & after a spell in the theaters, went straight to bein on airplanes.
But what in particular touched me in this letter was her mentionin Memphis. We used to love to go down there & see bands, buy records, chow down on bbq....damn! Them was fun times. I'm happy to share her letter w/y'all. She ain't missed a beat & by the sounds of it, may have even "discovered" some new talent. It's like that some times.
Dear Cousin Roland:
It's been a while. Hope them Yankee doodle dandy's are treatin you well in Philadelphia. Warren Treftz told me you was writin for a blog up there. I went & had a peek at it. I liked what I seen but it sure don't look like you get much feedback. Maybe them folks up there are to high-falutin for computer readin. It's probably all Myspace pictures or whatever the new thing is. Hard for me to keep up. Arp ain't no Williamsburg, NY. Sure, you got your share of beards & truckers hats, but these fellas are real truckers & no ways they ever paid 5$ for cup a coffee in their lives! You remember Ferlin Marquard? The poor fella that paints them pictures w/pig shit? Well, some skinny art woman from up them done came down & bought up a bunch of his stuff & is lookin to make him a big shot artist! Now I have seen it all.What has come of this world?
So, have you been feedin yourself on them cheesesteaks? Are they any count? I bet they can't touch the pork sandwich at Little Pigs, not by a mile! And you know it. Which was why I was writing you in the 1st place. I just got back from Memphis this past weekend. No reason for the trip, me 'n Hoot just needed to get outta town for a spell. We pampered ourselves, stayin downtown at the Peabody, goin swimmin in their pool that looks like it was built for Tiberius & havin massages, that sorta thing. It was fun. Went over to Goner Records on Saturday & picked up some stuff, one thing in particular I thought you might like was this double lp by a dude that call's himself Junkpile Jimmy. It's called 'Alberhill' & the clerk there says he put it out himself on something called Cartel Ilustre. Where to start? Well, it sure looks like something you'd buy, with the paste-on covers (both front 'n back), hand decorated label's & the music's pretty down 'n dirty too. Have you heard of him? If not, then come wallow in the mud cousin! It sure has got all the rapier hillbilly charms one would associate w/this neck've the woods & I would've sworn he was local, but seems that he's outta California. Wasn't there some band called Doo Rag from out that way few yrs back? I never much cared for them-too affected-but Jukebox Jimmy has tore a page outta their book-King Louie's too-and super charged it w/a load of fixin's that takes it somewhere outside porchville & into a canyon of fuzz overload & reverb. It's got crud-caked blues holler galore but as you dig deeper into the contents, it's layers are many. There's elongated tracks recallin riffs from 'Pink Flag' that get banged out over 'over till it feels like the paint is pealin off the walls. Then a mind meld between that Blues Control tape & Randy Holden's 'Population 2' lp. From there it staggers down some mysterious chasm & the racket that echo's back sounds like mutated, backwoods prog/metal gobble ala Heavy The World plowing though the Dock Boggs songbook. And, how about when that T Rex song gets scalped or when on side 4 he punk's out a cover of The Shirker's 'Drunk & Disorderly' that is so standup you might mistake it for the real thing? It's a handful this record. You'll need all your arms to hug it! There's 3 inserts w/info, lyrics & artwork included too.One claims that this was done from July 1998-April 2003. Recorded in all sort's den's & dive's, it's pretty damn fluid & like the bbq plate at Leonards, there's a lil somethin for everybody. I know how much you love a good yarn & Junkpile Jimmy can spin'em till the cows come home. It doesn't have no email or web address but you can reach out to 14016 Temescal Canyon Rd., Corona, Ca 92883 if you want to say hello. Or go to Goner at http://www.goner-records.com/
Next time your down that way you oughta drop in. Be sure to tell Zac or Eric Nell Young said 'how do'.
Alright now, you take care Cousin Roland. Be speakin at ya soon.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Depend On The Rabbit's Foot If You Will, But Remember It Didn't Work For The Rabbit.....Avarus' 'Luonnon Ilmioita 7" ep
This arrived under the door about an hour ago. The postmen in my neighborhood sure do get an early start! That's alright by me, I was up anyways. I'm tryin to compose a speech I gotta make down in Atlantic City-not sure which casino-tomorrow. I have been elected as the new spokesman for the 'Gimme A Kid, I'm Only A Chance' program. It's kinda like Big Brother but w/better odds. What it does is takes young, inner city ner-do-well's & put's them through a rigorous training program where they learn to be croupier's, Blackjack dealer's & so forth. Some of the youngsters I've sponsored in the past have really excelled, workin tables not just down in AC, but Vegas, Reno, & some of them Indian Reservations that's scattered around the midwest & whatnot. One of'em even made it to the French Riviera! I hear a Coca Cola is 8$ over there. And there's people naked as jaybirds prancin the beaches, drinkin'em like there was no tomorrow. Must be some life. Hell, at 8$ a pop, I wouldn't have no clothes either! And w/that sun beatin down on me, I'd probably look like an old piece of steak tartare w/a set've teeth 'n eyes roamin the shores. Not a pretty sight at all. Ugh, well shit, I need a break from this speechwritin anyhow. So far all I got is "Ladies & Gentlemen of the jury...." I thought they'd get a kick outta that. Levity ain't necessarily my strongest suit.
So this Avarus 7" showed up & it sure is makin my morning. Excuse me if your already hip to all this Finnish stuff, but while you was pokin notches in your white belt, I was busy workin. It's all kinda new to me. I mean, I'm familiar w/The Silver & Liiminarrina & even the older Hardcore stuff, but this go round it seems things have gotten more drawn out & organic. Much less spazzed out punk & more free form folk, or somethin to that effect. I think these guys have somethin to do w/that Maniacs Dream lp that I like too. And they was on Brian Turner's show & played at Terrastock, but you know, some of us ain't got all the time in the world for fun & games.The label on this 7" says it's from 2002 which means that I was in Greenland at the time. Not that far away from'em when you think about it! Had I only known. The a-side conjures up visions of one of them Robert Bly Men's Lib camp outs, except this time the participants are well fueled an makin a spectacle. If you beat a drum 'n moan in the woods & nobody hear's ya, does it make a sound? The answer is yes, as the b-side is testament too. Nobody is a pretty big word & not for nothin does the forest come alive in protest. The flip is a full on charge of the night brigade, complete with flies, mosquitoes, wasps, tics, red ants, rattlesnakes, owls 'n bears risin up to seek revenge for havin their tranquility impressed but a bunch've sotted tree huggers. That's how I'd feel too! Plus all of it's housed in a very spiffy oversized sleeve w/wraparound silk-screened artwork of a decidedly post Panter-esque variety. It's some good stuff indeed. I won't pretend that I know anything much about Avarus, but from what little I've heard, I'd bet that they ain't gonna crap out anytime soon. For my money these guys are comin out with 7 or 11 on every roll. And it's never too late to get behind a winner.
This ep is available from http://www.boingbeing.com/
Saturday, July 08, 2006
There was a hot minute there in the late 80's/early 90's where the Listen Loudest & Blind Dog label's was makin a bid for heraldin the new, Yugoslavian underground scene. There was a spirited attempt by someone stateside-I forget who-to get titles to the people; Lola V. Stain, Satan Panonski & Machine Gun were all releases on the aforementioned labels that I seen here in the USA. Perhaps not the most mindblowing sounds to pass through your head, but pretty damn unique & solid especially considering their locale. But then a civil war come along & that was the end of it. Both label's functioned out've Zagreb-the capital of Croatia as well home to an arts academy & a university-which took a quite a pounding after the secession from Yugoslavia, so it's no wonder the carpet had been rolled up. There probably wasn't none left! The records 'n tapes that had been around were gone, not to be seen anytime soon or ever again. It was sad & tragic on many levels, not the least of which was what had happened to people involved. There was a lot of "what if's" to conjure up, but as the years kept grinding away, so did one's feeble hopes. The bands & releases became hallowed footnotes, the history of them almost beyond comprehension. I mean, you could find an address to write, but chances are the building/house/street destination no longer existed. Pretty heavy when you think about it. I figured just be patient & hope for the best.
So then cut to 2006. I'm looking through the S-S Records catalog & I see this 7" from 1991 by Hali Gali Hazid on the Listen Loudest label & it's in stock. Scott Soriano had sniffed out a few copies, presumably from the source. I couldn't believe it. Great news! I snagged one & let me tell you somethin, you'll be hard pressed to find a more exotic mix of rock & folk.....anywhere! The beguiling charms of (presumably) gypsy trance & traditional Croatian are seared into a slab of western rock what's swagger sounds implictly American (in origin). It would be pure conjecture to point out their influences as Velvet Underground and Stooges. For one, it's not that obvious. True, them bands might be the source, but you gotta gorge yourself through a primitive rasher of Pere Ubu, (Metal Box era)PIL & Angel Face before ya get there. And don't forget a very heavy dose of ethnic zonk as potent 'n fortified as the blackberry wine that was no doubt copiously consumed as these tracks was recorded. It staggers, it croons, pinwheels, rips 'n howls & it does so on a mantle all it's own. A most amazing find & if your gonna spend 8$ for a 7" this year, why not make it this one.Go to http://www.s-srecords.com/
for more info.
Or check out the Listen Loudest site, at; www.gla.ac.uk/~dc4w/listenloudest/front.html
Thursday, July 06, 2006
Tuesday, July 04, 2006
So I was hoodwinked (long story) into goin down to the Italian Market to check on the critters at Siltbreeze HQ. Lax & co. had decided last minute to do the tourist thing & go to the Jersey shore for the holiday. And who get's to babysit-ME! Aw hell, I really don't mind, it's only a couple've cats & he said that the fridge'd be stocked w/sangria & fried chicken (my favorites!) so I'll help a brother out. I find the key, unlock the door 'n walk in. The place is about as quiet as a morgue. I guess this is one of them neighborhoods where everybody leaves town when they get an extra day. That's fine by me! Been here plenty of times before, but it ain't never been this calm. There are records everywhere, but I found a pile of albums hidden away behind a recyclin bin so maybe these is part of the kryptonite collection, ya know, records that just zap all the super powers outta ya. Looks like some good ones so I reckon I'll start with these & work my way through the room. Unless Dane Cook's havin a Tourgasm marathon! Then all bet's is off. That guy is a genius! Happy Fourth Of July!
The Starting Lineup;
1 Los Bichos-Color Hits
2 Door And The Window-Detailed Twang
3 Tav Falco's Panther Burns-The World We Knew
4 Ron And Shirley-Rock And Scroll
5 A. More-Flying Doesn't Help
6 Mittagspause-Live In Wuppertal
7 Nuclear Crayons-Bad Pieces Seen Delivering The Foretold Conclusion Spin All When After Consummate Pieces Open
9 Bikini- XX. Szazadi Hirado
10 Tubby Boots-Thin May Be In But Fat's Where It's At
Monday, July 03, 2006
A few post's back I wrote (round)about the Hospital compilation 'Auto Glamour Sound' & also made mention of a couple other Dementia Precox titles & the Human Zoo mini lp. Some curious folk's wrote & asked me what they was all about so I poked around to see what I would see. I've since come to find out that Dementia Precox have a site up where you can purchase sealed, original copies of their 'Of Parts Unknown' lp. If your into dark, Germanik tinged electro/art/wave from neglected corners of the early 80's midwest, then this record could be your new best friend, at least for the summer. Go to http://www.prerec.gemm.com/ for further info.
As for the Human Zoo record, that's a little more elusive. While it sports a Hospital matrix # (HDO 13) no tracks appear on the aforementioned cd comp. Can't say that I know why, 'cept maybe Human Zoo didn't fit the criteria, eschewing southern state Ubu-esque specifications. And they arrived a little late in the game too, this here lp bein released in 1986 & all. I spent some time in Cincy in the early to mid 80's (as a test subject for Kahn's Weiners) & can honestly say it was one of the dullest places I have ever known! The Hospital scene-which was truly underground-& WAIF Radio-which was all volunteer-were the only forms of civilized life you could count on. Oh sure, there might be somethin happenin at Bogarts, or maybe at (the better) Jockey Club, but for the most part, it was as stagnant as a mill pond in mid July. I was leavin as Human Zoo was breakin out but I heard tales of their greatness & was lucky that someone though highly enough of me to see that I got a copy of this lp. It's a doozy! You've all heard the story about Iggy smearin peanut butter on folks at a rock fest in Cincy back in the day, right? Well imagine if one of them globs had come to life. It would taken the form of singer Bevo Ruzka. Bevo's herculean monotone & Wiedemann fueled rasp-not to mention lascivious lyric content- is the main proponent in lauchin this lp into some anomolaous, dead-on DUNT zone that oughtn't exist between pre 'Raw Power' Stooges & post 'Always Was, Is And Always Shall Be' GG Allin & The Jabbers/Scumfucs. It's a wild & well lubed ride I shouldn't be takin right now! And I'd have all but forgotten about this if it hadn't been for that comp that they ain't on. But it seems like I connect dots like that all the time nowadays.
As for findin a copy, good luck! As I was doin some research for this, I came across a Human Zoo site run by former guitarist Bill Weber that'll shed some factual light on their history, myth & legend, go to http://www.williamweber.com/.
There's also a Human Zoo My Space page at; www.myspace.com/humanzoorocks
Everything you need to hear & know is there & now. One of America's most criminally ignored rock bands? Check it out for yourself.