Thursday, April 30, 2009


joc•u•lar |ˌdʒɒkjʊlə|

fond of or characterized by joking; humorous or playful : she sounded in a jocular mood | his voice was jocular.

joc•u•lar•i•ty |-ˌlarɪti| noun joc•u•lar•ly adverbORIGIN early 17th cent.: from Latin jocularis, from joculus, diminutive of jocus (see JOKE ).

A salacious furball from one time Clevelander Robert Dennis Crumb and cronies. The instrumental - "with novelty singing by members of the band" - was originally coupled with "Christopher Columbus", an even bawdier piece of faux 1920's whimsy featuring a vocalisation by one Leila Jane Dornacker.

This one can either be fairly amusing or downright irritating, depending
on one's mood and material condition. Rather like "The Rain Song". You have been warned.
THE CHEAP SUIT SERENADERS: MY GIRL'S PUSSY from "R. Crumb And His Cheap Suit Serenaders Party Record" 78rpm (Red Goose Records) 1974 (US)

phase v + counting

It has been raining, yes; nothing aberrant in that.

Spitting feebly over the last couple of days. Like a judas over supper.

The temperature here has fallen off here considerably too, even as the potential for biblical visitation radiates white heat and leaps from coat to coast. Secret pockets of incubation. Nervous twitching in overstuffed lifts.

I toyed with posting this song yesterday, but couldn't get it up. All efforts wilted, finally, in a pool of indecision.
Much like Marc Bolan's self consciously sighed line from "The Slider", Jimmy Page's lazy riffing suited my decline into half-assed entropy perfectly. I even dithered over whether to use a study from Francis Bacon's "Screaming Pope" to illustrate the piece; papal hats and curlicued tails - the one with the flayed carcass hanging behind him like a curtain. The Innocent pontiff. I have no idea who painted the above. The signature eludes me.

It could have gone either way in the end. A bit l
ike 1973.

I have no definite idea, siblings, as to whether this one irritates you as much as "Stairway to Heaven" does me. But I like Led Zeppelin immensely.

Recorded at Electric Lady Studios, New York and Olympic, London.

Engineered by Eddie Kramer; George Chkiantz; Keith Harwood.
Produced by Jimmy Page.

LED ZEPPELIN: THE RAIN SONG from "Houses Of The Holy" LP (Atlantic) 1973 (UK)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

klymyzh plazhda

Founded in 1979.Courtesy of .

Raymond Steeg: effects, sound wizardry;

Erik Drost: guitar;

The Silverman: keyboards, electronics;

Niels Van Hoornblower: saxophone, clarinet;
Edward Ka Spel: vocals, keyboards.
Recorded at Studio Lent and Studio Klaverland, January-March 2004.

Klymyzh Plazhda
- Sing While You May.


Monday, April 27, 2009

zorro doggerel

Pigs might crash,
swine flew;
the masked man
his bacon.


All that porking is making me scratch.

From the legendary Pink Fairies' drummer, John "Twink" Alder's 'infamous' 1970 solo LP. Fiddlers on the roofs of Volkswagen Beetles way down, Sam's in Mexico.

With two confirmed cases of swine flu quarantined in a hospital in Scotland, and a further seven of the twenty-two individuals thought to have come into direct contact with them being treated for symptoms, European health authorities are primed to attempt to contain the potential for an outbreak of pandemic proportions in line with the Americas. Spain, of course, was the first EU nation to officially announce its citizens had also tested positive for the virus. Farther abroad, New Zealand and Israel have similarly been affected, it seems.

The WHO, currently, has raised its pandemic alert level from Phase 3 to Phase 4; confirming the virus has presented the potential to transmit "community-level outbreaks." Phase 6 is the phrase to dread.

All very "Dawn of the Dead", and an indictment - if one is needed - against the environmental perils, and human costs, of intensive factory hog farming. Having f@cked up the arable land in Texas for decades, those corporate swine in the US have simply moved their operations into the third world where nobody complains.

TWINK: MEXICAN GRASS WAR from "Think Pink" LP (Sire) 1970 (US)

bonus shit:
BUTTHOLE SURFERS: MEXICO from "The Weird Revolution" CD (Hollywood) 2001 (US)


Sunday, April 26, 2009

ein toast

It is my birthday today, siblings. Like those awful greetings cards needle, I have pretty much stopped counting; I know this because often I miscalculate my age by a year of two when somebody has the effrontery to enquire. I have to think carefully and tally up the lost decades.

In preparation for the opportunity at least to engage in polite celebration, I shaved off some alarmingly grey stubble. Most of my head hair is thus far immune, happily, but the growth on my face has been bleaching out for quite some time. Having experimented with some close cropped facial topiary this past several months, I finally decided I was beginning to resemble a Captain Birdseye in training. I can think of far worse potential jobs, of course, but it is not the kind of look one wants to sport recreationally. While a more youthful countenance might comfortably advertise a fashionable pussy tickler, there is a fine line between just that and the suggestion of something altogether more unsavoury in the older male.

In my impatience to vacate the bathroom and pour myself a tall glass of something alcoholic, I managed to nick myself in several places. Those deepening creases between nostril and upper lip; cheek and jowl. I dispensed with the sidewhiskers entirely.

The first glass, then, was ultimately medicinal.


ALLEN GINSBERG: PUNK ROCK & OLD POND from "The Nova Connection" LP (Giorno Poetry Systems) 1979 (US)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

laugh a heffer to the slaughter

peter laughner

august 22, 1952 - june 22, 1977

Aside from those Hearthan 45's recorded as Pere Ubu (subsequently documented on the "Datapanik in the Year Zero" box set) and his earlier association with Rocket from the Tombs, this posthumously released collection of Laughner's home demos and live recordings remains his sole legacy to the world. Rudely jettisoned by Thomas just prior to the early sessions for the album which would become "The Modern Dance" and unable to stage a full recuperation from his addiction to alcohol and substance abuse, Laughner succumbed to acute pancreatits in 1977, aged just twenty-four.

A noted contributor to 'Creem' magazine in addition to his role as
performing artist, veteran scribe and kindred spirit, Lester Bangs wrote his obituary.

photograph by richard kern.

The following cover of Brian Eno's "Baby's On Fire" - from the 1973 LP "Here Come the Warm Jets" - was one of his last recordings. The guitar is as blisteringly visceral as one might reasonably expect - so inspired, in fact, it leaves the original for dead - but it is his vocal delivery here which genuinely surprises. Excellent.

PETER LAUGHNER: BABY'S ON FIRE from "Take The Guitar For A Ride" 2 x LP (Tim/Kerr) 1993 (US)


Friday, April 24, 2009

lose your chains

illustration by ib.

Hello, Ramone666. And Groover's Paradise.

pri•ma don•na
the chief female singer in an opera or opera company.
• a very temperamental person with an inflated view of their own talent or importance.

pri•ma don•na-ish adjective

ORIGIN late 18th cent.: Italian, literally ‘first lady.’

Cleveland, Ohio, February 1975. An atypical loft rehearsal sewing the viral spores which would ultimately seed both Pere Ubu and the Dead Boys: Rocket from the Tombs; a marriage born of the symbiotic partnership between one David Thomas and guitarist, Peter Laughner, and an uneasy alliance forged with fellow Clevelanders, Gene O' Connor (later Cheetah Chrome), David Bell and Johnny Madensky.

Penned by Laughner and O' Connor, "Ain't It Fun" - as sung here by David Thomas - prompted those disparate individuals to temporarily invite Stiv Bators in to contribute vocals, with Thomas sidelined on keyboards and saxophone. As much as Thomas's abrasive stylings infuriated certain elements within the group, it was quickly decided that Bators was too much the prima donna and Thomas wa
s reinstated merely as the lesser of two evils. Much of the material thrown up during this period would subsequently form the core of those songs called on by the Dead Boys, with Chrome and Bators reunited in NYC. Thomas and Laughner virtually rejected all of it save for the Ubu staple, "30 Seconds Over Tokyo".

It would be inaccurate to attempt to establish that there was ever a Cleveland scene in the strictest sense. Prior to Rocket from the Tombs, affiliated bands like Slash and The Mirrors were almost uniformly ignored by club promoters and prospective audiences in Ohio alike. The American midwest sought shelter in beer and qualudes and celebrated denial between swinging shifts while they burned all the rubbers back in Akron. Desperate for recognition, if not outright patronage, Laughner and O' Connor submitted demos to John Sinclair over in Detroit. A calculated move; the heavy welted imprint of both the MC5 and the Stooges on their sound could scarcely be denied. However politely pitched, their pleas fell on deaf ears. The White Panthers had troubles of their own.

F@ck it, boys and girls. Enough was enough.

Starved of all options, crumbling into acrimonious conceits, Rocket from the Tombs could only descend back into dust. As elsewhere in time - in a thousand foul smelling back bedrooms, or garages or lofts - circumstances dictated mutation; the survival of the most determined, if not quite the fittest. The rest, as every f@cker will insist, is history.

Crocus Behemoth be damned.

Good evening; siblings and muthaf@ckers. The night is not so young, and I am desperate too.


ROCKET FROM THE TOMBS: AIN'T IT FUN from "The Day The Earth Met Rocket From The Tombs" CD (Smog Veil) 2002 (US)


Thursday, April 23, 2009

fools' errand

"string of fools": illustration by ib.

1 |fuːl|
a person who acts unwisely or imprudently; a silly person : what a fool I was to do this.
• historical a jester or clown, esp. one retained in a noble household.
• informal a person devoted to a particular activity : he is a running fool.
• archaic a person who is duped

Formed and barely functioning on just bass and vocals in Brooklyn, NYC, The Fools - seemingly - are prudent regulars at the Bowery Poetry Club where they rally forth, to chasten and charm in equal measure, as an integral part of "Sean T. Hanratty Presents: Theater of Fools".

the fools; uchenna bright and jen tobin.

There is a sepulchral fragility to the songs this duo brings to the table.
A brittle clarity in their refusal to labour the point.

I do not jest: the portentous singer/songwriter jacket as married to a host of newer acts these days very often provokes a narcoleptic response; an overblown fanfare of arrangements laid like furs atop a bed of threadbare songs.
The Fools are certainly innocent in this regard. Keeping it simple with one eye on the clock, together they buckle down and rattle out one concise offering after the other. Quietly poetic observations in the two to three minute manner of a Jonathan Richman or Antony Hegarty. On first listen, their album does little to disappoint. Soon to be released on the Eternal Amateur label through Bowery Poetry Club Records, I find myself pleasantly preoccupied.

"fool" by vogther, the younger, gotha, 1540.

uchenna bright: bass;
jen tobin: vocals and guitar.

THE FOOLS: THE GREAT WHALE from "Lost And Found" CD (Eternal Amateur) 2009 (US)

THE FOOLS: OPEN DOOR from "Lost And Found" CD (Eternal Amateur) 2009 (US)

THE FOOLS: COSMIC LOVE from "Lost And Found" CD (Eternal Amateur) 2009 (US)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

8:55: safe on the bus

lau•da•num |ˌlɔːd(ə)nəm| |ˌlɒ-|


an alcoholic solution containing morphine, prepared from opium and formerly used as a narcotic painkiller.

ORIGIN mid 16th cent.(applied to various preparations containing opium): modern Latin, the name given by Paracelsus to a costly medicament of which opium was believed to be the active ingredient; perhaps a variant of Latin ladanum (see labdanum ).

If you are a regular reader on the bleachers, you will be aware of my rumbling fascination with Cleveland, Ohio of the mid seventies, and Pere Ubu in particular.

As I wrote here previously:

"With the notable exception of Television, specifically the intertwining guitars of Tom Verlaine and Richard Lloyd, there was no other band outwith the suburban hinterland of Ohio with a remotely similar vision throughout that time. At times a virus infected spider scrabbling over shards of brittle glass, at others a bleak mushrooming nerve agent, the corpulent presence of Thomas and the nihilistic but hugely inventive experimental tones created by Laughner coalesced into a cold blue flame licking out broken windows in the seedy bars of Cleveland to ignite pockets of interest outwith even America.

Throughout the blisteringly hot UK summer of 1976 into the media incited euphoria of 1977 when Punk Rock truly seized control, the Hearthan Ubu 45s were the Holy Grail of cool for a committed body of fans and practicing musicians alike; a small but influential core of an underground resistance teethed on the 1-2-3-4 of Ramones and the Damned but eager to map out stranger territories.

You can hear the corrosive influence of Thomas and Laughner in groups like Wire; Gang of Four; Joy Division; Throbbing Gristle; and a hundred lesser talents besides. The debt owed not just to New York but to the suppurating he
art of America's midwest cannot be overestimated.

That creeping sense of dread and threat of exposure like a fl
at stone lifted away from a seething mass of insect activity can be heard even in the post Pistols co-operative formed between Lydon and Jah wobble and Keith Levene in the aftermath of that disasterous US tour. Not everyone escaped 1977's final reckoning. Even as John Simon Ritchie chose to explore the junkie milleau of the rotten Big Apple hand-in-hand with his new girlfriend rather than return to face the music back home in London, the nest of used syringes and cotton wadding he set up home in led him further down the never fully insulated path which already claimed Peter Laughner in the summer of the previous year in NYC's cancerous districts. Quick to raise speculation as to whether his death through acute pancreatitis resulting from substance abuse might not have been self inflicted, Laughner's closest friend Lester Bangs went on record to scotch the rumour. The Ubu guitarist and fellow Creem freelancer had just prior to his end made plans to return to the quiet of rural Ohio to stage a recuperation and had been in good spirits. David Thomas steered Pere Ubu on to record a debut album for Blank Records in same year as Ritchie's demise - the outstanding "The Modern Dance" - and "Dub Housing" (Thomas's oft quoted personal favourite) for Chrysalis Records, but those early Cleveland recordings were never truly equaled."

Released 1978; Recorded November 1977. 
Produced by Pere Ubu and Ken Hamann.

Tom Herman: guitar; 
Scott Krauss: drums; 
Tony Maimone: bass;
Allen Ravenstine: synthesizer; 
David Thomas: vocals.

"Down to the bus
into the town
our poor boy
can't get around.

Eight fifty-five
down at the show;

she leaves early.

He'll never know.

Cuz our poor boy
believes in chance,
he'll never get
the modern dance."

Ill-advisedly, I have recently taken to wearing leisurewear. A hideous sight. Smelling salts have been recommended; laudanum prohibited.

PERE UBU: THE MODERN DANCE from "The Modern Dance" LP (Blank) 1978 (US)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

when a door is not a door

by Sheridan Dupre's very recent posting of the finis
hed piece from 1999's "Summerteeth", here is the working demo; forgoing both backing vocals and harmonica. While less is often more, I would have liked to have heard a version even closer to the song's inception - stripped of all convention of arrangement and sugar coated pretense.

Harrowing, perhaps. Uncomfortably hard hitting and brittle as shower-stall glass.

photograph by eugene brosseau.

From studio sessions recorded in Chicago, Austin, Nashville, Portland, Los Angeles and North Carolina. Just as it says on the jar, if not precisely the tin.

WILCO: SHE'S A JAR from "The Summerteeth Sessions" bootleg (Reprise) 1999 (US)

my friend on the raga

7N 15919.

Released on July 30th, 1965, the Davies brothers use of sitar here predates the release of The Beatles' "Rubber Soul" by several months. It has been alleged in some quarters that this superior Raymond Douglas Davies composition may in fact constitute the first popular release in the west to utilize Raga as a core motif.

From Wiki:

"Ray Davies has been heard to say the song is about the loss of his sister, who lived for a time in Ontario, Canada. Upon her return to England she developed a sickness and died while dancing at a night club. Just before she died he says she gave him his first guitar for his 13th birthday. Inspiration for the song came after a stopover in Bombay, where, finding himself jetlagged on a beach, Davies encountered two fishermen chanting on their way to their morning work. He wrote the song while traveling in India years later when he heard about the significance of the Ganges river in the Indian death ritual."

Interestingly, there are sufficient grounds to support the allegation that the appearance of "Friend" (singular) in the title is the result of a misprint on the single's original UK release. Kassner Music - which owns the publishing rights, apparently - officially lists the title as "See My Friends" (plural).

Misprint or not, I infinitely prefer the romantic introspection and polite air of mystery suggested by the former.

Produced by Shel Talmy.

THE KINKS: SEE MY FRIEND from "See My Friend b/w Never Met A Girl Like You Before" 45 (PYE) 1965 (UK)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

uncherished symphony

Recorded at Olympic Studios, London. A Sister Morphine production.

The Glimmer siblings stuck po' Brian's head down the toilet and
f@ckin' flushed it, Lucifer. Not just a lucky strike. There's a sucker born every damned minute.

THE ROLLING STONES: SWEET LUCY from "Sympathy For The Devil: Beggars Banquet Outtakes" CD (Bootleg) 1968 (UK)

THE ROLLING STONES: SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL (II) from "Sympathy For The Devil: Beggars Banquet Outtakes" CD (Bootleg) 1968 (UK)

Friday, April 17, 2009

we sell soul

Vintage Roky b-side. Before he took the elevator right on up to the 13th floor.

THE SPADES: WE SELL SOUL from "You're Gonna Miss Me b/w We Sell Soul" 45 (Zero Records) 1965 (US)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

deep space


Mir |mɪə|
a Soviet space station, launched in 1986 and designed to be permanently manned.

Owing largely to its financial demands on an impoverished Russian government, the Mir program was terminated in March 2001, when the space station made its fiery reentry into the earth's atmosphere, splashing down in the South Pacific. 

During its 14 years in space, Mir (which means ‘world’ and ‘peace’ in Russian) housed a total of 104 astronauts from various nations.

The postman


rapped on the door with the officiousness of the secret police early this morning. That's alright. No foot jammed in the door, and no warrant. Not even a bill.

Instead, a large padded envelope marked "do not bend", all the way from Big B over at Art Decade, via Texas. What fortuity! 

And what an excellent way to begin the day.

This song is so good it deserves a second showing in less time than it takes a comet to orbit the earth. Or a Soviet space station. Big B first posted it less than a month ago with the very generous proposal to mail copies of this Loverly release to the first three individuals to send in their details in true late night FM radio tradition:

"Back in '98, a friend gave me a box of 45s from Memphis label Loverly Records. While the band has since vanished and the label sank somewhere in the Mississippi, I think the song still lives. For the first 3 who agree and would like to own this piece of blue vinyl for free email your pen name and address to Art Decade. Since I'm floating the postage do not expect them delivered between 5-10 working days."
One went out to Iowa; one to Belgium; and one here in Scotland. Not a bad geographical spread for such a star-crossed atmospheric re-entry.

There appears to be very little information out there on Jetty Webb, which is a real shame. Closer inspection of the original MP3 tag, however, reveals the a-side to be a McKay, Sikes and Easley composition.

Nice, Big B.

JETTY WEBB: MIR from "Mir b/w Cornerwalk" 45 (Loverly) 1998 (US)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


design by ib.

Long overdue.

This one I intended to feature a couple of months back at least, but circumstances, alas, drew close scrutiny from the relentless ticking of hands.

In short, I f@cked up.

Dating from 1980, this 45 clocked in on the John Peel Show on at least three late evenings between 10 and 12 PM. No small achievement for a self released slab of vinyl cooked up by four possibly disparate teenage first timers; one on the run from a full time date with an offset litho printing press.

Guitarist, Andy - on bass here - was just fifteen years old at the time:

"Think we recorded about eight songs in a few hours in a little hall, straight onto a Revox B77 4-track, the bass-end is rather missing, but it captured the feel very nicely.

I played classical guitar quite well & was much into Bach - Clock came about after I thought the counterpoint of one guitar going up & one down might work ok - & it did. The (Jazz) drummer had some of those flared tom toms ( forget the name ) where the bass version looked like some giant Jagger lips."


Keith Ostler: Vox Phantom guitar;
Andy Ball: bass; Alan White: Gibson Les Paul, vocals;
Paul Wiseman: drums.

Thanks to Andy for taking the trouble to mail me both the original vinyl
and the spine tingling rip.

THE RHODESIANS: CLOCK from "Clock b/w Post Mortem" 45 (Period) 1980 (UK)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

easter parade

As I
pontificated with regard to the 1980's the first time I posted a couple of cuts from Glasgow's The Blue Nile over on Art Decade:

"I hated the self-congratulatory stench of delusion. I hated the graphics. I hated the cheap looking suits and shady haircuts. I hated the flippancy of the music foisted on me in every bar and nightclub. And, above all else, by the end of the decade i wanted to grab Brett Easton Ellis by the scruff of his Armani Wall Street jacket and jam a copy of "American Psycho" right up his smugly winking arse."

I refuse to concede I was by any means too harsh.

I did like this album rather a lot, though. The band was originally commissioned by Linn Hi-Fi to publicly demonstrate the fidelity of their high-end audio equipment, as it goes.

Robert Bell: bass, synthesizer;
Paul Buchanan: vocals, guitar, synthesizer;

Paul Joseph Moore: keyboards, synthesizer;

Nigel Thomas: drums.

Written by Robert Bell and Paul Buchanan. Recorded at Castlesound, Edinburgh.

THE BLUE NILE: EASTER PARADE from "A Walk Across The Rooftops" LP (Linn) 1983 (UK)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

13th floor elevator

David "Fathead" Newman's musical career began in 1954 as saxophonist in the
Ray Charles Band.

A Texan of deviant colour, that's all she wrote. This one is over 40 years old. For a slightly more contemporary tale of Caucasian life on the 14th floor, see here.

David Fathead Newman: altosax & flute;
Cornell Dupree: guitar; Ellis Marsalis: piano;
James Clay: baritone sax;
Dennis Dotson: trumpet; Chuck Rainey: bass;
George Rains: drums.

Produced by Jim Yanaway; Cass Hook and Scout Stormcloud.
Engineered byRichard Mullen.
Recorded at Caravan of Dreams, Fort Worth, Texas.

DAVID NEWMAN: THIRTEENTH FLOOR from "Bigger And Better" LP (Atlantic) 1968 (US)

Friday, April 10, 2009

communiqué #23: flatline

Apologies, brothers and sisters. We have a CPR crisis.

Due to an oversight on my part, we have reached bandwith capacity on our server for this month drastically ahead of schedule. Of course, the good news is that our audience is constantly expanding. The bad news, conversely, is that a number of files - including those most recently posted - will remain inaccessible until our download allowance renews on or before April 20th.

Nurses on standby.

In the meantime new posts will be rolled out via our standby server. Thank you.

Thursday, April 9, 2009


sibling jellyfish, by michael melford, 2007.

(esp. of a country) almost or entirely surrounded by land; having no coastline or seaport :
a midget state landlocked in the mountains.
• (of a lake) enclosed by lan
d and having no navigable route to the sea.
• (of a fish, esp. a North American salmon) cut off from the sea in the past and now confined to fresh water.

You will of course be familiar with the version of this song from 1971's excellent "Surf's Up", released on the Wilsons' own Brother label. In 1968, the Beach Boys were still under contractual obligation to Capitol, and the tensions created by the "Smile" debacle were acute, palpable and insurmountable.

An album with the working title, "Landlocked" was submitted and promptly rejected on the basis that nothing contained therein was deemed commercial enough to worry the hit parade.

"Where is the f@cking single ?" Capitol demanded.

"Where is the f@cking single ?" Warner Brothers demanded, three years farther down the line.

Exhausted by years of constant wrangling and bickering, the Beach Boys simply shelved "Landlocked" and went back to the studio to begin work on a completely new album in June, '68, the recording sessions drifting over into late November with Brian Wilson continually perfecting new material. The result, "20/20" was eventually released in February of the following year and their "Break Away" 45 - harvested from those same sessions, I believe, but not included on the LP - was an early summer hit.

This version differs greatly from both the original "Landlocked" mix and the one held over until 1971. Remixed by engineer, Steve Desper, for his own listening pleasure, it also resurfaced on the soundtrack to the 1999 "Endless Harmony" documentary by Alan Boyd. The unreleased sessions were ultimately released as a bootleg of superior fidelity on the Invasion label.

THE BEACH BOYS: 'TIL I DIE (STEVE DESPER MIX) from "Landlocked" Bootleg (Invasion) 1968 / 1971 (US)

Monday, April 6, 2009

death valley '69

Two of four improvisations by Jerry Garcia - produced for the original "Zabriskie Point" score - which never made final cut.

Jon made a point regarding a certain Navajo Indian's mistrust and "low opinion" of Brujeria, and Carlos Casteneda's meddling with those potent primal forces which reign out in the desert. Between cactus buttons blistering in the sun and the roots of jimson weed scrabbling down through the dirt, shadows lengthen or suddenly disappear:

The desert demands that your movements be slow and purposeful. Your attention has to be external. You must pay attention. No wool gathering. The funny thing is, there isn't that much to pay attention to. I've found that, when moving slowly through the desert, paying close attention to small things, my emotions detach themselves from the anchors of reason. I have found myself suddenly caught up by vast and solemn joy, or just as suddenly pulled under by a sense of truly cosmic menace."
Myself, I have never made it out into that arid wilderness where tourists lose themselves in ailing camper vans.

The place of shamans and Old Testament prophets.

The atmosphere up here in the north is tubercular with precipitation; a seeping rain which collects in bones and rheumatoid joints. Leafy green. Thick with mildew and moss.

And in the autumn only, psilocybes and amanita muscaria; druids behind shades.

JERRY GARCIA: LOVE SCENE IMPROVISATIONS (v.3) from "Zabriskie Point (Remastered + Outakes)" 2 x CD (MGM / Rhino) 1969/1997 (US)
JERRY GARCIA: LOVE SCENE IMPROVISATIONS (v.4) from "Zabriskie Point (Remastered + Outakes)" 2 x CD (MGM / Rhino) 1969/1997 (US)

Sunday, April 5, 2009

chanson d'o

Accompanied by Tuca on guitar.

Written by Tuca and F. Gerald; arranged by Tuca and Françoise Hardy.

FRANÇOISE HARDY: CHANSON D'O from "La Question" LP (Sonopresse) 1971 (France)

Saturday, April 4, 2009

some velvet morning, 40 years ago

photograph by don snyder.

This version did not feature on Some Velvet Morning - Eleven Covers
back in February over on the excellent How Marvellous, although Thin White Rope's definitive rendition did, alongside several other hitherto undiscovered gems. In hindsight, I am glad, since it provides me the opportunity to dig out this equally marvellous slowburning version of the Lee Hazlewood classic, from Vanilla Fudge's fourth album release which originally made #16 on the US Billboard charts.

Carmine Appice: drums, vocals;
Tim Bogert: bass, vocals;
Vince Martell: guitar, vocals;
Mark Stein: lead vocals, keyboards.

Engineered by Eddie Kramer and Tony Bongiovi.

As a bonus bordering on excess, given the unseemly length of these jams, I have also included the Carmine Appice composition "Where Is Happiness" - engineered this time by Bob Hughes, and following directly on the back of "Some Velvet Morning" - to demonstrate how this original piece feeds off the group's exemplary Hazlwood reinterpratation.

It seems unfairly rude to edit the two into one somehow. Don't "Bogert" the joint.

VANILLA FUDGE: SOME VELVET MORNING from "Near The Beginning" LP (Atco) 1969 (US)

VANILLA FUDGE: WHERE IS HAPPINESS from "Near The Beginning" LP (Atco) 1969 (US)

Friday, April 3, 2009

what do you want on the wall of death ?

round and round. king of the jungle in a sidecar.

A little heavy on the saxophone - in the long run - perhaps, but why quibble ?

From the soundtrack to Jérôme Laperroussaz's esotric cinematic ode to European bike racing and the crashing independent. Recorded in the spring of 1971, like "Pink Floyd, live at Pompeii" without Pink Floyd. Or a volcano.

Reissued fairly recently on CD, but once again out of print.

Christian Tritsch: bass;
Pip Pyle: drums;
Didier Malherbe: saxophone, flute;
Gilli Smyth: space whisper;
Daevid Allen: guitar, vocals.

GONG: WHAT DO YOU WANT ? from "Continental Circus (Original Soundtrack)" LP (Philips) 1971 (France)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

track 4 probe

WAP 5.

|ˌabsɪs| |-sɛs|

a swollen area within body tissue, containing an accumulation of pus.

ORIGIN mid 16th cent.: from Latin
abscessus ‘a going away,’ from the verb abscedere, from ab- ‘away from’ + cedere ‘go,’ referring to the elimination of infected matter via the pus.

Hmmm. I seem to have developed an abscess.

My doctor has prescribed a short course of antibiotics - a penicillin blitzkrieg - but I fear a more invasive approach may ultimately be required. An excision. A sharpening of knives.

This, of course, only goes some way to justifying my escalating reluctance to adhere to the discipline of 24 hour posting; the everyday chore of scratching an irascible itch.

I have been listening to a lot of James Brown and Curtis Mayfield of late, as previous posts suggest. I potter about rather aimlessly between gulping down 500mg gelatin capsules as inviting as horse tranquilizers, and mixing effervescing cocktails of Jaap's Health Salts and Berocca infusions (like something named after a character in the arcade fighting game, "Mortal Kombat") to alleviate the resulting heartburn and general sense of feeling a little under the weather. I enjoyed the respite of a minor operation on the NHS involving the removal of a Pilinoidal Sinus several years ago; that was a pain in the ass too, but not so lamentably close to the bone. Just this morning an attractive young female doctor prodded at me - with what I perceived to be quite understandable reluctance - as I sprawled, legs akimbo, on an examining table; a paper sheet arranged ridiculously over my genitals.
A more exhibitionistic personality may well have enjoyed the experience. As it was, I felt bad enough for the two of us.

I can think of nothing in my record collection which neatly wraps up the situation. If, indeed, there is something quietly lurking there, I don't wish to dwell on it. Or labour the point. This is as close to having my ankles up in stirrups as I ever want to go, quite frankly.

To quote an old chestnut: "For god's sake, nurse, I said prick his boil!"

Other than that, dear siblings, things are suitably swell.

LFO: LFO (LEEDS WAREHOUSE MIX) from "LFO b/w Track 4 Probe (The Cuba Edit)" 12" (W.A.R.P. Records) 1990 (UK)