Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Flaming Telepaths & A Parcel Of Furies.....Aufgehoben's 'Messidor' CD + 'Axiologue/Thermidor One Five' Picture Disc 7"

How many of you's out there can remember when Einsturzende Neubauten was scary? Or Swans? Granted, it was a LONG time ago, but them 1st two lp's from EN was radical soundin back in the early 80's. They took the whole Industrial Music theory from Throbbing Gristle & drove it to it's literal conclusion. Swans (when they was formidable) was like a more menacing & calculated ('n loud!) extrapolation of what Whitehouse was goin on about, 'cept w/Swans it seemed "real". Of course that kind've aura is capable of lastin only so long till folks become immune & it's on to the next scam. Then Borbetomagus became the fearsome castrators of hipster chattle once indie rockers started allowin (Free) Jazz & Improv racket into their sleepin bags. Since then it's become a lawless harbor of noise, akin to the ancient pirate mecca of New Providence. They run the gamut of workin the con though most just seem dopey (like Blixa's hair) or clueless (like Jarboe). But as w/the pirates of yore, there's gonna be that one what rises above the rest, flyin a Jolly Roger that can strike w/cunning & abandon. Them would be Aufgehoben.
Up till this new one on the Holy Mountain label they was just a name. But after bravin the whole of 'Messidor'-once w/the lights off!- I feel that I know what it must've been like to do battle w/the likes of Batholomew Roberts. The discharge Aufgehoben mortally spray across the deck seemed filled w/all manner of shot; Xenakis, Bailey/Bennink, Frank Dommert, H.N.A.S.,Agencement, Frith & Osternag w/muscles, a masculine reconstuction of 'Chance Meeting On A Dissecting Table' this time w/a virile Johnson that don't shoot blanks. The carnage it exacts make's you wanna take your brain out for a bath. Or at least a massage. Then here come's this charmin 7" on the White Denim label, picture disc & everything! On here the Incus buzz seems very much the vibe of the hive, sorta like 'The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow' w/a headless Shakin Ray Levis hauntin the landscape, or Phil Minton w/a mouthful of moustraps, chasin you into quicksand. Who'd have though that a steady diet of twice fried sausages & baked beans on toast would one day 'blossom' into such a vital, precarious & refreshing aberration? But then, what else would you expect? True, they're no Evil Moisture & for that we can all be thankful. Ding!
And with that, I am outta here. Till next time....

(both titles can be purchased via; http://www.midheaven.com/ contact the label's at; http://www.holymountain.com/ and; http://www.whitedenim.com/ contact the band via; http://www.aufgehoben.org/)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

A Kiddley Divey Too, Wouldn't You?.....Tickley Feather/Serpents Of Wisdom Split 7" ep

Found myself in West Philly yesterday, respondin to a plea for help. My ol' buddy Al 'Black Hawk' Downing's pet rabbit ('Landrew') had escaped his domicile & was on the loose somewhere's in the neighborhood so I come out to fetch him back. I'd be lyin if I said I didn't have a vested interest in Landrew's return. I'd been feedin the fucker fresh basil & turnip greens for months now in hopes of gettin him all sweet so's I could help him "escape" myself-right into a casserole dish- a little closer to Easter. Not that Black Hawk knowed any of this. Hardly! That the rabbit itself might have his own designs on freedom never entered the picture. And it didn't seem likely, out in 'Never, Ever Land', that he'd been snatched. I was pretty sure he'd straight up run off. For one thing, everybody out there is some sort've vegetarian & second, they's all seem to worship animals or hold'em in high regard. Walkin around the WP was like roamin around that village in The Wicker Man, if it smelled like patchouli & bay leaves. After a long spell it become apparent we wasn't gonna find Landrew. He had burrowed deep into some shrubbery somewheres. Black Hawk's heart was heavy. I felt his pain. The longer that rabbit stayed free range the tougher his meat was gonna get. Shit, he weren't gonna be worth nothin but a stew if he kept this up! To hell with it I said. We got back to the house & needed some cheerin up. I scoured the cupboards & found a bottle of Black Velvet, a can of coconut milk & some banana's. Slopped a mess've all that into a blender w/some ice & presto, we had ourselves a pitcher of Canadian Coladas. They was sure to take the edge off.
We was startin to cheer up & about to run off a 2nd batch've drinks when the doorbell rang. It was one of them ragamuffin hipsters, replete w/ironic, Goodwill-scored corduroy coat & a wool Peruvian "aviator" cap w/the ear flaps pulled up. His sad little moustache looked more like whiskers & overall he resembled a kitten. Granted, just about the ugliest kitten you'd ever wanna see but a kitten nonetheless. He was friendly enough & said he was goin door to door sellin records. He had this here split 7" by Tickley Feather/Serpents Of Wisdom & said he wasn't havin no luck gettin rid of it & all's he wanted was enough money to go & buy a clove cigar over from the co-op. I asked him what it sounded like but he couldn't articulate, stumblin over the words 'psych, folk, weird & weirdness' like it was a mantra. So be it, I gave him 5$ for the cause & went back inside. We whipped up some more of them CC rider's & gave this baby a spin. First run through all's we did was laugh & shake our heads about how much they's tryin to climb up in the tree w/Espers or Fursaxa. But after a few spins I realized you could no more "blame" them bands for these sounds then you could a record store for sellin them copies of the 'Princess Bride' or 'Camelot' soundtracks. But then I got pulled in deeper. Both side began to grow on me & after a spell all them garbled adjectives the doorboy had spilled outta his mouth was payin off. The Tickley Feather side was dosed w/all the lush space whisper 'n ache of Gilli Smyth or Helen Johnstone pasted & cut over an aural veneer of THAT sort've determined instrumentation that has become a hallmark amongst the finest in the Finnish underground. The Serpents Of Wisdom side could almost pass the litmus test as one of them apocryphal Anglo tales of a never-before-known acetate by some obscure psych monster. I'm embellishin sure, but the guy's heart's into it & while I could do w/out the Robert Frost sample & backwards vocal gibberish, he's cut some charm on here that made me immediately go seachin for my copy of Oliver's 'Standing Stone' lp. Hold's up pretty well too. It's gotta nice 2 sided printed sleeve + they's pressed it on thick white vinyl. Can't find no number anywhere but I'd reckon it's limited. Were I a bettin man, I'd have wagered this would've been something off the Weird Forest label. That it's from here in town is practically cause for celebration. You's bring the spirits. The crow cassoulet 'n humble pie's on me.

(contact; http://www.badmasterrecords.com/)

Monday, February 19, 2007

It's Like 'Oscar Automobile' But Different.....Car Commercials 'Jar' 7" EP

Daniel Dimaggio is the Orson Welles of Princeton, NJ. He is! Look at him; master of the airwaves behind the 'Strong Little Legs (RIP) & 'Giant's Of Jazz radio programs on WPRB as well as commander of flesh 'n blood charm peddlers Home Blitz & now this band Car Commercials. For all's I know he might even hate Gallo Wine & fish sticks too. He ain't alone on that count! I wonder what his thoughts are concerin Elmyr De Hory? Hmmm....another time perhaps.
Home Blitz you might already be familiar with. Many a two-cent's was tossed around on their behalf last year, extollin praise as how they ranked alongside Modern Lovers, Half Japanese & Electric Eels as genuine Real McCoy's of the American Underground. And I ain't sayin they aren't or they don't.I chose to abstain from the hyperbole not because I didn't have the change to spare, but on account I thought them was pretty big britches to fill. I don't put much truck in E. Eels 'n 1/2 Jap comparisons these days. Personally, I think I'd be more apt to consider the contents of my wallet readin something like 'Ron House fronting the Feelies' but it's that kind've reactionary pontificatin that make's this blog the contentious darling it is, right?
Anyway's, w/Car Commercials Dan & co. have seemingly tapped into the wellspring of amateurish goodness what emanates from the source(s) of them Messthetics compilations that're gracing ears 'n airwaves (finally) nowadays. There's a lot to be said for the zero production skills, which in the right hands (their own), I'm always a sucker for.True, on occasion they come dangerously close to channelin the precocity of early Daniel Johnston, but most of the time Car Commercials nail it like they was stained by the same varnish & wax buildup as 49 Americans or Crash Action Winners. I'd also state for the record that in another time 'n place (take a wild guess) these guys would've lived high on the hog recordin for the Onset/Offset label alongside the likes of Les Bottletops,Toerag, Brothers Gorgonzola & other estimable strangers that have yet to be properly heralded. I know, I know, folk's is all the time sayin 'we are not familiar with these bands you reference'. But I am! There's a fine line between obstinance 'n ignorance & sometimes in the middle they become twain. What am I gettin at? How about; DON'T LET 25 YEARS GO BY BEFORE YOU HEAR THIS CAR COMMERCIALS EP! I can't make it much plainer than that.There's cassette's too. Collect'em all.

(for more info check out www.geocities.com/leafleafrecords & thebestbluebicycle@yahoo.com . 7" is available via; http://www.s-srecords.com/)

Thursday, February 15, 2007

A Dodger In Mets Clothing.....Night Wounds 'Allergic To Fire' LP

It is nothin short of a goddamn pleasure to encounter a record from a Los Angeles band what's got it's limbs 'n lungs attuned to avant styled scraping's. The Thin Wrist label ably provides as much w/every release by in house trucker's like Open City or Curtains & the Not Not Fun collective have a veritable Spahn Ranch of sonic assassins loose on the landscape as well. And as if that weren't enough, here comes this long player from Night Wounds bringin it's own brand of aural slaughter to the barnyard. Released on the Woodsist label, 'Allergic To Heat' is a solid block of dunt that fuses the distant Kraut thump of nascent Savage Republic w/the No Wave distillation of (early) Silver Abuse & End Result that's capable of peelin both skin 'n paint, either of which is dandy by me in these frigid times (I could stand to lose a couple pounds & an apt. makeover wouldn't hurt). Not that I'm insinuatin Night Wounds studied the moves of any of them bands. Hell, for all I know, they might've work up one mornin, heard something by Sightings or Blues Control, thought they was Pop bands & figured it weren't a bad racket to be in. Some people's got strange notions. All's I know is that they's armed w/both squall 'n thunder & hats off to Woodsist from providin the lightning to ignite this record like a Mars bonfire. Nice screen printin on the jacket too. Let's see...a NYC label makin itself available for an LA band...I do believe we's all FINALLY startin to 'just get along'. Amen for that!

(this lp is available via; www.fusetronsound.com or www.midheaven.com. contact the band at; regimentle@gmail.com)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

They Shoe Horses, Don't They?.....Lambsbread's 'King Of The Crop' 7"ep

Were we to conduct a survey, I bet most folks would admit to hatin the term New Weird America.Hear, here, I second ye olde motion! Let's face it, it weren't nice to exclude all the dumbo's what aren't from here in the 1st place, so renamin it is the right thing to do. Already I see & hear the tag's New Weirdo's or New Beardo's being bandied around. I propose the term....New Bromantics. Good, yeah? I like it & think it's sufficiently retarded. Hey, it's mostly dudes to begin with & the one's what ain't is always called as much so why not, right? Right on's more like it Bro! Killer name! Now that we've rocked that, let's stoke the jams.
On the top of just about everyone's list of most hyped New Bromantics would have to be Lambsbread. They've been kickin it for a couple yrs now but all's they got to show for it is a bunch've self released cdr's & cassette's that match up about the same as a Wilbur Wood win/loss record. It's alot on both sides of the coin, but when your goin that hard, your gonna throw up a lotta junk (f you know what I mean). Sometimes you eat the bear, sometimes the bear eats you. Unlike some of the more misguided resin scrapers in their Bro hamlet, Lambsbread wants us to know they feed off the marrow of early 80's Hardcore rather than...the obvious (& tiresome) 90's band reference. And even though they's now sequestered on a farm in central Ohio, they's all Boston/Cambridge weened so I guess that why I was hopin on this debut 7" they'd break out like them narc-gobblin beaners of yore, The Groinoids. Alas, twas not to be. Maybe they's savin that for the lp I'm told is on the way. On this ep issued by Skulltones they's chopped out some archive scrud 'n lathered it anonymously on each side. Can't says I know which is which, but on one they sound like a live snippet of RPA finishing up a version of 'Kill The Pope' replete w/Flipper flaps & on the other, a brief moshup of Harpoontang 'n Cornholer soaked in Natty Bo, grindin strings into sparks in a mildewed basement, West Phila, circa 1985. The name's of the pharmaceutical's abused have been changed to confound the lives of the ingestants.
So yeah, this little record. It's okay but there ain't a lot to call'em out on either. Guess we'll all have to wait & see what sorta prizes is burrowed in that forthcoming album. Personally I'd like to see'em hit some zone of outer-strat h/c dork genius like The Neo's or Chemotherapy but I don't think it's in the mix. Lambsbread seem content doin what they do 'n there's an audience already built in to gobble it up. For instance, this 7" was the first one on Skulltones to sell out it's pressing. Not to shit talk Lambsbread, but certainly that ain't 'cause it better than the other two the label released. But don't mind me. You's will figure it out if your of the mind. The thing I kept thinkin to myself over 'n over-that's right, twice- while I was writin this is how come Lambsbread ain't yet done somethin on Load? That label is like Jamaica for the grizzled New Bromantics & I couldn't imagine a tighter fit if you squeaked. Then again, the ink might be dryin on that contract at this very minute. Either way, I've already set forth into the future, forgettin I ever cared to begin with.
Barrister, next case please!


Saturday, February 10, 2007

Next Stop, Broadway......Roland Woodbe Host's The WFMU Listener Hour!

Well, I did it. I finally made the radio! An hour sure goes by fast when your spinnin records. I never woulda figured. Which explains why I brought so much what never got aired. But not to worry, my hunch is some of them will get to your ears even if I ain't the one on the mike callin'em out.
All in all I had a right nice time. They sure do keep it warm in that studio. Man, I was sweatin like a priest at a wiener roast all's through that set! I wanna apologize to any Swede's out there for makin mincemeat outta your neutral dialect durin that block've Scando bombs. My second language skills have gone to shit since I reentered the private sector.
Now I realize 9am on a Saturday ain't the primest hour to be diggin the warblings of the one's that got away. Hell, most of you's in New York City was probably just gettin home when I was playin them records. I hope I was of some help w/your entrance into Nod as you was countin all the hairs in a New Weird America beard in pursuit of beddy-bye. Sweet dreams & rest easy. Not to fret. It'll be archived.

Much thanks to Brian Turner & Bill Zurat for helpin 'n hangin. Also, big props to the WFMU in-house chef (didn't catch the name) for the divine lunch we feasted on after the broadcast (pictured above). He was hospitable enough to provide me w/the recipe which I have reprinted below along w/the particulars of today's set list. It servers 4!

Roland Woodbe setlist for the WFMU Listener Hour 2/10/07;

Mark Perry-Whole World's Down On Me (Deptford Fun City) 1980
Four Plugs-Wrong Treatment (Dead Goods) 1979
Pop Group -Where There's A Will There's A Way (Rough Trade 1 sided promo) 1980
Colours Out Of Time-Rock Section (Monsters In Orbit) 1981
Contact-Fascinated By Time (Object Music) 1979
The Stoat-Up To You (City) 1978
The Mekons-Snow (Red Rhino) 1980
Korpus Kristi-Stadt Der Blauer Einer (Zickzack) 1980
Leather Nun-Slow Death (Industrial) 1979
Liket Lever-Levande Begravd (Sista Bussen) 1979
Besokarna-Anna Greta Leijons Ogon (Heartwork)1979
Kriminella Gitarrer-Sylvia's Unge (Kpak) 1978
Watabout-PA Stockholms Alla Discotheque (Abnorm) 1979
Mizz Nobody-Smittad (Hass'p) 1978
White Stains-The Energy (T.O.P.Y. Scan) 1988
Twenty-Five Cents-The Witch (Flying Nun) 1981
Riptoids-The Devil Paid A Visit (Onset/Offset) 1985)
What Is Oil?-Mr. Mole (Oof Beat) 1979

check out the show here; http://wfmu.org/playlists/LH

Recipe for Frankfurter Crown;
3 slices bacon
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 cup milk
3 cups sliced cooked potatoes
1 1/2 cups cooked cut green beans.
1 lb frankfurters

Heat oven to 350. Crisply fry bacon slices, crumble & set aside. Drain off excess bacon fat & brown onions in remaining drippings. Stir in soup, milk, potatoes & green beans. Pour into a 1 1/2 quart casserole. Cut frankfurters in half & stand around the edge of the baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes. Top with bacon & serve (cold slaw makes an excellent side for this as well....mmmmmm, delish!).

Sunday, February 04, 2007

When You Come To A Fork In The Road, Take It.....The Christa Min's 'The Devil & Tex Watson' 7" ep

There's a sayin I heard goin round that the only "good" member of Jackie-O Motherfucker is one what's quit. Or been burned, which on my abacus, add's up the same. I reckon the implication is that whoever's still hitched to that wagon ain't the swiftest horse in the race. I hear ya. To me it's akin to volunteerin for Custer's 7th cavalry w/every day bein a potential trip into the valley of the Little Bighorn. I mean, how gratifyin can that be? Could it be any worse if you cut loose, went renegade & started your own band?
Well, in regards to this record (w/participation from a former {?} JOMF) by an outfit called The Christa Min the answer is.....pending. Ha! No really, it aint that easy. I wish it was, but the Christa Min don't got it figured out yet. Or if they have, they might wanna consider a redo. This record embodies a fair amount of the sparkle dust culled from dried tears wept to the strains of Dead C records all over the Pacific Northwest in the mid 90's combined w/the excruciating improv insinuation copped east 'n brought west by JOMF when they was beguiled by the "spontaneity" of act's they shared rolling tobacco w/in NYC & Western Mass over the past few yrs. C'mon, takin the opening riffs of Zeppelin's 'Misty Mountain Hop' & repeatin'em over & over & over as some vocalist free whines into a floppy hat....I mean I expect that from a Gate record but this is ridiculous! Really that's all's goin on; a Zep riff w/extemporaneous "leads" fed into it while some sp'anger reads randomly from the 'Shamanism For Dummies' how-to book. Over the whole of both sides.Every now & then he let's out one of them Iggy yells & for all I know, breaks into a jig that would make Mr. Brojangles (or a stuttering heiress) blush w/envy. Me? That ain't what's makin my cheeks red. It weren't like I had any hopes dashed by The Christa Min. If this is what they wanna do, they's doin it. I guess I'd have liked to see the apple fall a little further from the tree but then I ain't one much for apples to start with. It you's the type to invest in the notion that imitation is the highest form of flattery, then this is indispensable. If however you march to the beat of a fool & his money is soon parted, then forewarned is forearmed. Enjoy the rest've yr Sunday.


Thursday, February 01, 2007

A Lesson In Logic.....Necronomicon's 'Tips Zum Selbstmord' LP

Just when I figured I'd plugged all the gaps & was home free from the mentally unwound, here comes one screamin outta the woodwork. And since we don't hear a whole lot from German Vertical Slit fans, what the hell? His 15 minutes commence-NOW!

Guten Tag Rommel Woodbe und Siltblog-

Hallo from Hamburg in Germany! Let me say I am number one of all fanatics for you in Deutschland. It is such fantastic to read & learn of all releases you encounter. Okay, so is it desperate to maybe ask for some writings on wonderful Krautrock reissues? Is from your blog not so much. It is true that the last decade did much to destroy the geist of the genre, to make it practically impotent. For example, look at American label such as Kranky. So much untermenshen that cry for nipple of Neu or Faust. And then most inferior copyist's of all; the Amon Duul problem. I fear there may be as many as six million of them infesting our lebensraum. Their eradication must be swift & ruthless! Vas? Pardon me Mein Kapitan, I was lost in my brain. So what was I saying? Oh yes, I would very much be honored & become correspondent for to showcase some of the more obscure masterpieces of Krautrock music. No problem for this promotion. I gladly accept!
For the start I would like to make attention to the legendary album by Necronomicon 'Tips Zum Selbstmord'. Translation is to you 'tip to the suicide'. Perhaps there are those who purchased this when it was available from Little Wings Of Refugees label as 4xlp boxset in last century. To them I say ausgezeichnet! You are the elite, the privileged. Some of us have not to know the taste of a silver spoon in the mouth & therefore had to wait until now for our chance to belong. Your days in power are numbers you filthy Laus! Mark my words; we will bury you! Ach, Mein Gott,sorry again, I get so passionate in my thoughts. Like your Amerikan saying 'sometimes is hard to tell forest from trees'. This is, for me, certain.
So, I feel much has been made of this title but I may be the first to say perhaps this is dark humor of the band. After all they are German. Tragedy & comedy are as one. We are romantic by nature & darkness is in our soul. But is interesting, as I recently sit down to this lp, I also later listen to Vertical Slit's 'Under The Blood Red Lava Lamp' cd & encounter much similarities. Both band's are dark rockers who thrive on science fiction & evoke ominous vibrations. Both also recorded with most 'distorted' quality but yet it works. They are also bands who are without single focus and so, misunderstood. I say this as Vertical Slit were between progressive rock & dawn of heavy metal. I feel this is for Necronomicon the same. However, Necronomicon predate Vertical Slit by some years and this is evident by their moments of pastoral, fusion-like instrumental passages. Much has been said of these part's sounding like Pink Floyd but I say to you, is also very like 'Jazz Odyssey' from Spinal Tap. Nicht so gut! True, some see this as psychedelic, a time to mellow from the overall heaviness of the record, but when the band peaks with their anthemic riffs, in-the-red organ overload's und harmonic choirs, the heaven's thunder as though Odin himself will charge out of the sky & wreak his havoc on us all. Dieses ist gut! This music is Teutonic majesty and captures the essence of Sturm Und Drang at it's foremost. Yes, the lyric quality is bleak-absorbed with vague leftist & ecological politics- also operatic, but it is the soul of Wagner, Mozart, Goethe combined with the blut und starke of young Germans from those rebellious times. Rock und Roll was the bltizkreig of those days and while I say yes, Necronomicon are indeed Krautrock, their extensions beyond that parallel are both unique & remarkable. The dischordant & sinister edges only help propel them into greatness. I would suggest a purchase of this no question, especially if you are to be interested in the rumblings on the outskirts of the genre.
And so Mein Furher, I think you shall find my review quite in order. I have established history, fact, comparison & verdict. I only live to serve as your trusted & humble servant. Until we meet again, SIEG HEIL!

Auf Wiedersehen,

Count Heinrich Von Kleist (Jr.)

(the cd version on the Garden Of Earthly Delights label is available via; www.forcedexposure.com)