Thursday, September 29, 2011
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Stream of unconsciousness… I need to be out that door soon and will undoubtedly collapse on the sofa when I return. Not because of strong drink or any other kind of stimulant I hasten to add.
Anyway it occurred to me that one of the few saving graces of “One Day” was the inclusion of Derek Amitri’s “Roll To Me” in the soundtrack. In some ways, they were Glasgow’s version of The Smithereens. I also like the one about “Always The Last To Know”.Is that the title? Can't recall.
Anyway yes – afore I go, the fifth birthday of a favourite haunt is coming up. Really hope that I can stop off for a visit soon but in lieu of that… here are the details of this years shindig.
Monday, September 26, 2011
Say what? Say hey! It's a double dose of Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co. this week with a return to Otto's (complete with free raffle prizes!) and a final visit to Hank's Saloon for the Brooklyn Country Music Festival...
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29th / OTTO'S SHRUNKEN HEAD / 538 East 14th Street (just west of Avenue B) in ol' Manhattan /
Two prize-winning shows, from 8:00 sharp until 10:00 / No cover / This month featuring a *free raffle* of semi-fabulous prizes!
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 1st / HANK'S SALOON / It's day two of the eighth annual "Brooklyn Country Music Festival"! /46 Third Avenue (at the corner of Atlantic Avenue) in Brooklyn / One SIT & Die set at 11pm -- and no cover!
See the full lineup at:
Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co.
"Ballads, Boogies & Blues"
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Things are a wee bit out of my control in these parts of late, hence the erratic nature of content.
It’s gone from seemingly having all the time in the world to well, not having that. There’s a whole bunch of things I need to get to and will do when the gittin’ is possible. Finding the time to just listen to and read stuff has been engulfed.
Did get to the pictures these past two afternoons though, saw "One Day" which isn't so great - a bit wummin-y but I don't mind staring at Anne Hathaway for a bit. Also wondered if the director had clocked Matt and Kim's "Lesson's Learned" video.
On the other hand today's offering "The Guard" is really, really good. I would have made one small change to the outro but other than that - excellent. It's like Bill Forsyth directing a bizarro world "Rush Hour" scripted by Graham Linehan. Trust me on this one, it's cool and twisted. pity it's not a pilot for a TV show.
The news that REM split doesn’t really trouble my world. They had a few good songs but I never saw them. There were peripheral aspects to them that have some resonance though. Such as getting Murmur through the mail from Field Marshall Peter Zaremba when those Fleshtones were on IRS. My friend Scott McCaughey toured with them for many moons and most recently I guess the tie up with The Bambi Molesters on Sonic Bullets. They were fans of great music and supported it, even although their own fare was often a tad “meh”. It’s not their fault they shifted a lot of records. Damn, look at the time, gotta split again.
Saturday, September 24, 2011
It's that time again...
We are extremely pleased to announce the return of the Monorail Film Club.
First up, this Sunday we have Billy The Kid, Jennifer Venditti's powerful coming of age film. ‘I’m not black, I’m not white, not foreign, just different in the mind. Different brains, that’s all,’explains fifteen-year-old Billy. Intuitive commentary and intimate verite footage reveal a unique attitude as he responds to a painful childhood, first time love, and his experience as an outsider in small town Maine. By turns humorous and disturbing, this portrait challenges the viewer to understand a triumphant teen on his own terms.
The screening will be preceded by a short film The Waltzer Boys (20 mins), directed by Martin Clark. The Waltzer Boys is a charming documentary about the magic and lure of fairgrounds in small towns in the north of Scotland.
Martin Clark will be introducing the screening. He is a Glasgow- based photographer and filmmaker. Join the film club after the screening in Café Cosmo.
As ever we recommend booking tickets in advance from the GFT box office on 0141 332 6535.
Billy The Kid - Venditti, USA, 2007 - Sunday 25 September at 7.50pm.
Woah. Talk about turning a negative into a positive.
On March 9th 2009, Suzy and BB Quattro’s friend HANK was murdered. This catapulted them into an episode that they’ve captured like an audio movie. I hesitate to use the expression rock opera because this includes the roll part too. In addition to the fact that they had to deal with the loss of a dear friend, the healing process took many twists and turns. All of those are documented here in terms of a collision between the finest shards of East Coast US punk and glorious Californian pop.
I put my hand up – I am undeniably biased but sometimes one has to be objective. There are times when in order to retain any sort of credibility then such bias has to be set aside.
As much for the acts sake as for the individual who is testifying.
So, I solemnly swear that this album plays out like a great movie. It has a beginning, a middle and an end. Sequenced to be listened to in order but the individual songs stand tall in their own right. Be it the Diddley crunch that hits you like John Wayne pummelled Victor McLagan in “The Quiet Man” or an anthem like “In My Dreams Again” that literally reduced me to rubble. “Freak Out” and “Kick Ass” are power rockers that’ll have you bouncing and punching the air like you thought you’d forgotten how to. The latter not unlike a tag team guitar rassle between Brian may and Ross The Boss. Phew!
It’s been a pure pleasure to watch the band get here. It’s not fake, it’s not forced and their version of the Zim’s “You Angel You” is as jaw dropping as how The Who interpreted Mose Allison’s “Young Man Blues”. Suzy’s vocal on “Still Mad About You” is pure Minnie Ripperton, a soul/doowop hymn to their departed amigo that manages to convey hope for the future in addition to declaring their allegiance to HANK.
Wherever he is at this point, I bet H is damn proud of what his old friends have assembled in his honour. He must have been a heck of a guy to warrant this standard of remembrance. Though I never had the pleasure of meeting him, I reckon we would have gotten along just (Jim) dandy.
That’s my pitch – if you don’t like this then I really can’t help you but if you do then savour it because they hardly ever make blockbusters like this anymore. As a double feature with the upcoming Dahlmanns opus “All Dahled Up” the outcome could be terminal.
But what a fucking way to go.
Friday, September 23, 2011
Most up to date listing, click here!
Oct 07 - La Lata de Bombillas, Zaragoza
Oct 08 - Apple Pop Festival, Villaviciosa
Oct 09 - Osaba Taberna, Zumarraga
Oct 11 - Oct 16 - ITALIAN TOUR
Oct 21 - Wurlitzer Ballroom, Madrid
Oct 22 - Quatre Estacions, Pedreguer
Oct 28 - Sala Circus, Cerdanyola
Oct 29 - La2 de Apolo, Barcelona
Nov 18 - 12 y medio, Murcia
Nov 19 -
Four Seasons Club, Castellón de la Plana
Nov 25 - El Loco Club, Valencia
Jan 12 - Jan 21 - JAPANESE TOUR 2012
Image by Ran-el Cabrera
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
A previous engagement meant that I was unable to partake of Panther Burns action. Saturday saw me head South Coastward to the climes of Brighton. A first for me and I’m wondering now why it took me so long. Echoes of Norway I guess.
A flight at just after 6am meant that I was cast in among the package holiday brigade at Edinburgh airport. Not ideal at that time in the morning but sometimes there are things that have to be endured for the greater good. The actual journey was a relative dawdle and I arrived at Brighton Station a little after 9am in the pissing rain.
The event? The Bambi Molesters were making a welcome pitstop to play the half century birthday bash of Los Fantastico’s Django Deadman at the legendary establishment that is The Prince Albert.
Brother Clive was unceremoniously disturbed after some frenzied liquor action the night before and took me to his very well located and ubercool pad for some coffee and do dump my bags. The crew that met up for breakfast held it together very impressively after details of the antics of a few hours before came to light and I can’t recall the name of the joint but the sausage sandwich and espresso went down pretty darn well.
From there, it was time for some shopping and pub crawling with my Croatian compadres in a part of town that was like an expanded Haight Ashbury. Dozens of cool clothing, record, book and comic stores completely different to any other town centre I’ve been near in recent living memory, a really nice, boho vibe with plenty of groovy shop fronts. A couple had robbed the Ren and Stimpy font for their signage, can’t go far wrong with that. Our first aperitif of the day was taken in the William the Fourth hostelry where base camp was set up for a wee while.
A most agreeable afternoon was spent wandering around and it’s certainly a place I’d like to spend a bit more time exploring. It was grand to be able to visit the Punker Bunker and to see Buz again. T’was getting close to sound check time and those Bambi’s needed to get back to the hotel in order to prepare. I think that The Sussex was the name of the pub we were in just prior to that.
The Prince Albert is a great, great place. The band room itself is one of those places that is just steeped in history. Great stage facilities, excellent sound and to have such a place on your doorstep must be fantastic, though perhaps not for your liver.
Opening the proceedings was Sin City, I missed a couple of songs because of the need to eat something but this local duo served up some Americana standards as the place began to fill up. Los Fantasticos were next and started with a version of “Lady Grinning Soul” that is to appear on a surf tribute to Bowie. The appearance of brass to punctuate their sound also allows them to veer clear of your average instro band.
In recent years, the “instrumental music” canon has been pretty much redefined by The Bambi Molesters. They operate to an almost orchestral degree, so imagine the surprise when the penny drops that there’s a combo not unlike them operating outta Brighton.
Los Fantasticos were an unknown quantity to me this time last year. Indeed it was only when I travelled south to see the former that their existence was made known to me. Indeed Django had organised gear for The Bambi’s London debut at The Luminaire last November. Long story short, he told me that The B’s would play his birthday party next September and lo and behold – it came to pass!
This, the band’s second appearance on this sceptic isle was as the blueprint four piece. Not augmented by horns or keyboards – just the raw materials that make them a pulsating joy. They have an album called “Intensity!” and that is what they brought big style. The sound in the place was crisp and magical with an interplay of instro-dental (that’s a form of cinematic sounds with teeth) virtuosity and even some beach standards replete with vocals such as “California Sun”.
This is one of the very best beat combos on earth – Hrvoje keeps the whole thing on a primal roll with Lada. This is the foundation that provides the 360 degree squall that Dinko and Dalibor weave around it. Like strychnine-flavoured candy floss (hey we were at the seaside after all). You can keep all that brooding quiet loud indie guff because this is one behemoth that just keeps on evolving. The new concert film that’s coming out in November (or maybe sooner) will validate any claims made here and then some. Any film festival out their worth their salt should be begging that the band and film come as a package to make their event truly count.
A truly great night in a wonderful venue. By all accounts they gave the garage rockers a right royal dose of salts at the Blast Off Festival in Nottingham. I wish I could have joined them but sadly I was booked on a plane back to someplace called reality. Hungry for the next encounter, anyway – anyhow – anywhere.
Had a wander on Sunday prior to leaving that took in the horrors of the remaining pier in all it's tourist-fleecing glory and the seafront. The skeletal remains of the torched boardwalk has way more charisma. I was wondering if they can't project some kind of holographic illusion on to it from the shore. Without the aid of stimulants I may add.
Brighton is one damn cool town. Further adventures are planned there. Oh yes.
Monday, September 19, 2011
While yours truly was in Brighton and otherwise disposed Mr D'uff was on the trail of Tav Falco... I just noticed that all the links he put in here have disappeared on the transfer to blogger. Bugger.
Sugar Ditch (and more) Revisited
Possibly the first record I ever bought by mail order – back in the days when you went to the post office, bought a postal order and sent it off with a letter to your chosen dealer was "The World We Knew" by Tav Falco & his Panther Burns. I already knew them by reputation and their track on the "Rockabilly Psychosis" compilation plus it was on the esteemed and reliable New Rose label so it was an informed investment. “The World We Knew” was a great package, gatefold sleeve, each track had a photo and an annotation by Mr Falco and it sounded like no other rock’n’roll record I had ever heard then or since.
Shortly thereafter I bought Fan Club’s reissue of “Behind The Magnolia Curtain”. When it arrived in the post it had a 12” EP titled "Blow Your Top" in the package with it that I was not expecting. This month sees the 30th (!) anniversary of the first ever release of these two records and to celebrate this happy event, a reissue on Stag-O-Lee records and a tour of sorts by Tav Falco and the current incarnation of the Unapproachable Panther Burns.
I had looked into booking the band to play my hometown of Edinburgh, but things being what they are, and my pocket book being unable to sustain the risk of such a venture, I decided it was less costly, and less hassle to see the two UK dates, last Thursday at London’s 100 Club and Saturday at The Cluny in Newcastle.
As I enter the 100 Club, first band (and Stag-O-Lee label mates), Miraculous Mule are already on the stage. One of those heavy, swampy, yowling blues-punk (there, I think those are the standard adjectives for these bands – CD) combos that either catch fire or don’t. In this case they didn’t. Too loud – perhaps because the venue was near empty, too leaden and I couldn’t really hear anything that sounded like a song. On another night, they may be great. Just not tonight.
I use the time to say hello to Giovanna, the Panther Burns drummer – who I vaguely know from the last time the Panther Burns played Newcastle in, I think, 2005 and meet Tav, who I’ve never met before but had corresponded with on the aborted Edinburgh gig.
The 100 Club gig wasn’t a ‘professionally’ promoted thing, more the result of a bunch of friends and associates of the band pulling together to put the show on. As a result, it’s a fairly busy bill and next up is Mr Sterling Roswell himself, I think a former occasional Panther Burn (Sterling, am I correct?). Due to time constraints - the gig has to end by 11pm-, Sterling only sings two songs, aided by acoustic guitar and effects. There’s a new spooky lonesome ode to something and the big hit (or at least a song I’ve heard him play before) ‘Nobody Loves The Hulk’. Both great and entirely in keeping with the main event.
If you don’t know Sterling’s sterling work, do as he suggested from the stage and Google him, he’s made some great records. He may also have Glasgow/Edinburgh shows very soon. Watch this space for details.
Now if I could have picked a band that I ‘took an interest in’ back at the time I bought “The World We Knew” that was quite unsuited to supporting a Panther Burns show, I may have easily alit on say… King Kurt . When I was 14/15 years old King Kurt actually played the Club Nightspot in Falkirk, two streets from my home. But… my mum wouldn’t let me go. To paraphrase another great Scot, I wanna be a psychobilly but my mammy willnae let me.
But to my great surprise, some 20-odd years later, I finally get to see King Kurt in the somewhat more historic setting of the 100 Club. And, to my greater surprise, they are not actually that bad at all! It’s a short set (perhaps mercifully) but with the exception of the absence of a barbers chair offering King Kurt haircuts, a spinning wheel to which band/audience members may be tied, and the kind of mess they are known for then it’s pretty much as I imagine they’ve always sounded. Songs included "She’s As Hairy", "Zulu Beat", "Ghost Riders" and of course "Destination Zululand". I should at this stage perhaps point out that this is the ONLY gig I have ever attended where there were signs around the hall saying
“NO THROWING OF FLOUR, PIG’S HEADS, INTESTINES, ETC. ON STAGE TONIGHT. ANYONE CAUGHT DOING SO WILL BE REMOVED FROM THE PREMISES.”
I would normally consider this simply part of the implicit contract between venue and punter but suppose if King Kurt are playing, it doesn’t hurt to make it more explicit. (thanks to PJ for the photo of the sign, I wish I’d stolen one).
Thankfully no one chooses to flout the instruction and the stage stays clean for the approach of the wholly unapproachable Panther Burns and their chief shaman Tav Falco. Mr Falco has by this time changed into an electric blue peak lapelled suit with a black velvet collar and leopard print cuffs. It’s a two part show, a sort of Panther Burns then and now I suppose. The first set comprised of songs from “Behind The Magnolia Curtain” and “Blow Your Top” and opens with "River Of Love" (I think?) smartly followed by “She’s The One That Got It”, “Snake Drive”, “Rio De Rosa”, “Pantherman”, “Oooeee Baby” (which we find out they learned from The Cramps - surprising considering it is a Memphis record), “You’re Undecided” and more.
Not one of those ‘play the classic record from beginning to end’ shows, more of a fluid and informal look through the back catalogue. The four piece was relaxed and sound like a band that possibly had never played together before at all but like a band that has always played together at the same time. No mean feat and testament to their unique sound. I recall a Ralph Traitor review of a Panther Burns show in the late 80’s which he opened with “If you have ever curiously regarded a pile of toenail clippings and wondered what they might actually sound like…” and that’s as obscure and as clear a description as I could muster.
There are a couple or three points in the schedule where I get the distinct impression from the confused glances between the musicians that someone in the band, Tav probably, is going their own way with the songs but it all somehow, gloriously works.
Tav leaves the stage and the band lock into a weird instrumental that has something of a tighter groove than the previous numbers and in a few short minutes, their leader is back on stage in a new and shinier suit for the second part of the show, the newer material. Although Tav refers to the newest record "Conjurations: Séance for Deranged Lovers” a couple of times, it’s not by any means wholly drawn from that record and contains a selection of hits from the whole history of the band. They’re joined on stage by a keyboardist (from Rome, I never caught his name) who adds some weird high pitched hidden melody to the sound. Even so, with the exception that these tunes leave the rockabilly references a little further behind and bring the Southern (and old European) gothic romance fervor of the band to the fore, there’s little to distinguish the two sets in style. As Lux Interior would say, I never bought the myth of musical progression anyway, if it ain’t broke (or indeed, baroque) why fix it, huh?
I’m going home on the 11.15pm so I had to leave around 10.50 as Tav is writhing on the floor pulling feedback and distortion out of his Hofner during an extended "Gentleman in Black". Never mind, second verse same as the first, we’ll do it all again in Newcastle on Saturday.
The Cluny website, like that of the 100 Club, asserts that “the curfew for gigs is usually 11pm”. If it weren’t for that weasel word ‘usually’, I would be having words myself with the Cluny promoters. The Panther Burns weren’t even halfway through by 11pm. I had booked my train down from Edinburgh to get me into the toon at 6.30, met up with pals (including the only two other people from Scotland to make the trek) for a great Greek feast and had a seat booked on the 23.10 Megabus home.
We strolled into the Cluny about half past 9 and saw the band sitting across from us enjoying a glass of wine. They graciously ask us to join them and when they order substantial desserts, I get the distinct impression that they are not likely to be on stage any time soon. After they head backstage to prepare, I take a listen to the support band but it’s another sub-Birthday Party squalling noise and I’m not impressed enough to actually bend my head round the door to look at them. I later bump into old acquaintances Russell and The Wolves and realise that it’s basically them under a new name.
Next up, Brian Coyotemen (who deserves plenty respect for arranging this thing), does a one-man rockabilly band type thing. I’ve seen a lot of these one-man-band things now, and it’s a little difficult to care that much. He certainly wasn’t the worst I’ve seen, and a good deal better than several who have records out and a degree of status, so fair play to him. I was, however, biting my nails to hear the howl of the Panther Burn.
I’m in the bar when I hear the opening rumble and me and North-East homies make tracks for the main hall where the band have already taken the stage. I can’t remember what they played first, my attention being almost wholly taken up with the rather eye-catching outfit sported by Giovanna, but after that it’s into “She’s The One That Got It” and a similar set to the 100 Club show. Despite persistent pestering from me and the possibly more persuasive Inge Johnson, we did not get to hear “I’m On This Rocket”, probably the standout track from “Blow Your Top”. Tav surely heard our pleas but the backward steps he took every time we spoke to his feet indicated that he was choosing not to.
The band were on better form, perhaps loosened by the later performance or just more settled in and there are none of the confused looks at the opening of the songs. There were fewer breaks and more urgency or maybe I had just had more wine. Tav doesn’t change outfit during the break this time, just hovering offstage while the band play the instrumental that signifies the change from then to now.
I suppose I ought to mention the other highlight of both shows, the appearance during “Drop Your Mask” of the most fetching apparition of a young lady name Thea to perform a Tango dance recital with Tav himself. It’s hard to explain if you weren’t there but it seemed as normal and as weird as you can imagine.
By this time I have more than missed my bus home but don’t worry, I wasn’t stranded on a dateless night, I had a pal to stay over with. The show probably didn’t end until at least half past 12 so I took the view that I need to just deal with it and see the whole thing through. Geting back the next day was a travel nightmare, I won’t bore you with the details but don’t try to use public transport in the North-East on the morning that 40,000 people are headed for the Great North East Run.
In any case, whining aside, if you want to see a band that truly understands what is great and special and plays it like it was a feeling expressed in sound rather than a set of sounds and motifs to copy and reference, then this is it. Possibly the truest rock’n’roll band to play this country since… ooohhh… the last time Panther Burns played here.
Lindsay, I hope the Bambi Molesters in Brighton were worth it.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
I heard an expression today, “Too much history”. This implied that someone who was very familiar with a particular organisation would not be able to take hard decisions. While the actual phrase resonated with me to some degree, it made me consider loyalties in general. And in that area there can never be too much history. Of course opportunists will come and they will get the out of dodge but I think loyalty is important. Especially in these times when it regularly seems like it’s a forgotten art.
And this also made me think of this 10,000 hours premise. That to be any use at something, that’s the minimum tenure to gain any sort of expertise. Hell, that’s just over 416 days. I considered the amount of slog that I’ve put in with regard to this NBT shenanni and at a small c – conservative estimate – then I reckon maybe just shy of four times that. If I’d committed armed robbery, or even murder, that I’d be out by now. But anyway, that’s fine. Low expectations and a general disdain keep me grounded. It could be worse.
Are you going to the 100 Club tonight – or The Cluny tomorrow? I’m a little peeved that I’m missing a rare visit to these shores by Tav Falco and his eminently unapproachable Panther Burns. However, Mr Duff will be in attendance at either one or both of these and he’ll be making us all wish we’d been there in due course. The reissue program of the PB oeuvre is underway now in league with the good offices of the Stag-o-Lee imprint.
And talking of which, The Fuzztones are set to drop into Englandshire too in the not too distant future too. Me, I’ll be taking in the immensely, sensurround-tastic Bambi Molesters and Los Fantasticos with Surfin’ jam-master Clive G down “the Brighton”.
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
The winds have died down. Bit of damage here and there but compared to what some folks have to deal with, not a lot. Who really gives a flying one whether all this weather guff is down to “global warming” or whatev?
It’s bloody happening so we’re just gonna have to get used to it.
These are peculiar times hereabouts in any case and serious consideration of what stacks up is going on. In addition, it’s real busy - so I’m not entirely sure which day is which at the mo’. It sez Wednesday on here so that's wher we must be. Hope to get a beat on that before Saturday to some degree – would hate to miss me flight to Brighton.
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Feels like I made progress today. Even have 90% of my OX column done for filing tomorrow on schedule. Joachim will believe that when he receives it of course but it's almost there.
Did you see "Super 8"? If not then you should because as old school hokum goes it's really great. never really got "Cloverfield" but JJ Abrams and Spielberg have crafted a blinding slice of entertainment that's worthy of the master, Joe Dante himself. S8 works on SO many levels and you have to stay right until the end of the credits to get all of the benefits.
Seek it out at a cinema. As I often say - I don't care how big your TV is - just trust me. It reflects an America that simply isn't allowed to exist anymore and I miss that aspect.
The Shotglass Killers “Ghost Of An Empty Bottle” (Devils Jukebox) has the lowest fi cover art that I’ve ever seen (maybe). It ain’t giving much away about the content at all so to that end this is hiding their light under the proverbial punk rock bushel. It has to be said that the vinyl/CD combo sports altogether more inviting sleeve art and if you’re gonna score it, that’s the one to plump for. (I scanned this image from it but the scanner bed wouldn’t play nice)
Once inside – you’ll find high octane rock’n’roll action of the style one might arrive at if Nine Pound Hammer collided with The Boys. With great anglo-girl vocals.
I guess that a “selling point” might be that Brian James plays guitar on “He’s Got Style” and that he produced this but the actual attraction is that hardly anybody does this kind of thing this well these days. It’ll fairly rattle your cage unless I’m mistaken which I have been known to be but not about this, trust me. There are some nice wee guitar harmonics amidst the general melee that save it from becoming sludge by cut 3.
Barry White is back. But you know him better as Barrence Whitfield. “Savage Kings” on Munster sees a regrouping of original Savages (Peter Greenberg and Phil Lenker) with some newer recruits on drums and sax.
For those who don’t know, Barrence was the original Cee-lo Green . In terms of soul shoutin’ then the first two albums are pretty much unsurpassed. You know what Mojo mag keeps telling you the JJR are? Well, these guys were doing it way deeper several generations ago.
And it seems like rubbing at that same old thing (“It’s Mighty Crazy”) has paid off because I think the band is due in Europe right about now. “SK” kicks off the jam with a version of “Ramblin’ Rose” like Otis Redding might have performed it. Their take on “Shot Down” hits a cool groove too by being brought down a gear from the way it’s often hammered out. This restraint really resonates with a big phat bangeroonie!! The set was recorded in Cincinnati as a homage to King Records for that label’s lasting inspiration to the band.
One of the last things I have to do on this earth is to catch these guys do this in person, somewhere in the wondrous climes of Madrid preferably.
Annika Norlin on SVT's "Tack for Musiken" last night.
If for some reason you only want to see the music bits, these occur at approx. 15.33, 30.51, 44.15 and 54.04.
(Tack Mr Ulf for the link... I couldn't find an embed code)
Saturday, September 10, 2011
The Sabrejets “Sin-Sational” (Raucous) isn’t gonna be nominated for no mercury or any other planet music prizes anytime soon and that’s a good thing. Their fare is “greasy rock’n’roll” like it always was. Ideally enjoyed at blood-curdling volume live in a bar, these Belfast geezers have a long track record of delivering the goods. The notion of authenticity or conforming to a purist notion doesn’t fly here because this music is in these guys dna. Rockabilly in general exists in a backwater these days. The form has been pillaged every which way and like burlesque it has crept into areas of the mainstream. This double edged sword means that there are a lot of toothless perpetrators out there but this ain’t one of those.
17 songs maybe a little too much to digest in these ADD-addled times but the 13 originals and 4 covers include runs through “Ultra Twist” and “Blitzkrieg Bop”. “Sin-Sational” is guilty as charged and a Friday or Saturday night in the company of these guys down the pub would be a hoot indeed. Hope there’s an opportunity to road test that theory one of these days.
I didn’t actually plan for this to turn into a thread that would deal with up to the minute takes on sounds from yesteryear but next up was The Breakers self-titled debut (but actual third album) for Wicked Cool. Harking from Denmark, these guys apparently opened for Bon Jovi in Europe during the time period known as Summer. I say that because there was precious little evidence of the big yellow ball anywhere around here. So anyways, theirs is a big sound that crosses The Fleshtones with their gaffer’s Disciples of Soul. Is there a boardwalk in Copenhagen?
Crowd-pleasing stuff then and while not exactly Henning Staerk-tastic, these guys actually have tunes to back up the moves with the possible exception of “New York City” that reminds me of Hipsway or Love and Money. Shudder. The singer, Toke Nisted, sounds like Chris Farlowe moonlighting as Rod Stewart and there’s not a damn thing wrong with that. I notice that there’s Van Zandt writing credit on many of the tracks too. He’s a shrewd guy and evidently not without taste because he loves The Dahlmanns.
I was talking back yonder about authenticity and the late 60’s ambience is all about that. If The Breakers cut it live then they could find themselves in demand. Like The One-ders in “That Thing You Do”. And I can certainly hear Southside Johnny Lyons singing “Soulfire”.
Sticking with Scandinavia – this time in Sweden, Dee Rangers “Down In The Playground” (Suckers Choice) is also channelling the past but in an altogether more organic and warm way. I’m not sure if there’s any “hot concrete” involved but I think this is their best sounding record to date.
Those keyboard swirls are definitely hitting the spot and where that last album conjured up memories of groups I’d rather forget, The DR’s reminded me of The Creeps rather than gave me them. There’s a Ramonesness to the artwork concept too that works on a subliminal level. Understated even. The mix of jangle and farfisa strikes a cool balance over the course. Mans did a great job with this.
The instro “Powerslam III” takes a flavour of Toni Basil’s “Mickey” and extends it into a hopped up Graham Bond extravaganza. DITP also includes the best cover of “First I Look At The Purse” since the J Geils version on “Full House”.
The Munster reissue of Eskorbuto’s “Eskizofrenia” is nothing like any of these previous three. An influence on the Spanish and Latin American punk scenes, it sounds like it came out of Eastern Europe. They came from Santurtzi in the Basque Country.
Intensely political and designed to rouse the rabble – these short, sharp bursts don’t make for easy listening but the energy level is intense. I’m listening to this on CD but I’d imagine that the vinyl would resonate with a deeper, cleaner rage. This is very much analog music that should be attached like an unexploded device to downloads of whatever tosh the NME is flying the flag for this week. This stands up a damn sight better than any record by The Clash I’ve heard in recent times.
Actually, I heard “Rock The Casbah” this morning and just about brought up my haggis roll. Combat rot. (Munster is distributed in the UK by Shellshock)
Thursday, September 08, 2011
Wednesday, September 07, 2011
Don’t have much time this evening. Heading into Edinburgh to meet up with the Oslovian Cultural attaché.
Important matters of state will be discussed such as when The Dahlmanns album will be ready to go, stuff like that. It’s a school night though so no disorderly conduct is likely.
Tuesday, September 06, 2011
September is upon us and apart from it being the month of my birth we've got 3 hot gigs to celebrate it with you all. My official Birthday is on the 6th but you can choose any or all of these fine nights out to raise a toast to my arrival on this sceptic Isle, no need to buy me an expensive gift, your mere presence will suffice!
Wednesday 7th September at The legendary 100 Club, Oxford Street, with The Bermondsey Joyriders + John Sinclair (60’s counter culture revolutionary/ex MC5 Manager) and guest DJ Jeff Mundy. + Exotic Burlesque from Luna Rosa too all for £8 in advance or £10 on the door or contact us for £5 tickets (be quick) 7:30 til 11:00pm not to be missed!!! https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=233535206678475
Saturday 10th September at the New Cross Inn, 323 New Cross Road SE14 6AS with The Television Personalities and The Electric Cocks 8pm Start, tickets/details from http://www.newcrossinn.com/event.php?id=240
Friday 23rd September at The Grosvenor, Sidney Road, Stockwell SW9 0TP; with Wonk Unit, The Bucha Effect, and The Electric Cocks and this one is FREE! https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=250633868294226
Our new LP Deptford Calling will be on sale on CD and limited 12” pink vinyl at all gigs along with whatever T Shirts and badges we have left
If you need any more Info just send me a message and I will be delighted to help.
Make September Phobic!
So here’s something you won’t want to miss. A super-limited (250 - numbered) slab of scarce live Cramps material that is only up for grabs to members of the Staysick board. It’s like one of those things they advertise on TV as not being available in stores or from anywhere else. So if you want one then you have to line up over there (link down the page a bit).
As if documentary evidence was required, this act provided one of the most comprehensive rock’n’roll visions of any popular music group ever. The fact that they never reached megastardom is moot. They didn’t care. The tail’s raison d'être was never to wag the dog – merely to see justice done. And ultimately to make this world a better place.
So anyway, the folks behind this are continuing what the LOTC wrought back some 25+ years ago. This is their biggest project to date and quite likely their last because the penny has dropped as to just how much effort goes into putting something like this, or the video comp, or – in the olden days – a fanzine and whatever - together. This is for the fans and not to be hawked on any auction sites or any such shennanigans.
What’s on it? Enquire at the desk but don’t be wasting Mondosean’s time or I’ll set Professor Von Bainée about ya.
Monday, September 05, 2011
Sunday, September 04, 2011
SÄKERT! på engelska (Razzia)
Regulars will be entirely aware by now that I consider Annika Norlin to be one of the very greatest artists that I ever discovered during my long time doing this. Pure and simple.
That said, she remains a mystery to much of the world. The indictment of this album not having a scheduled UK release underlines why the music business is dying here - the blighters involved are largely deaf or worse. The US (Minty Fresh) and Germany have indicated that they lead the field while poor old Blighty is malingering under the delusion that it still means something.
The strange thing is that it took a number of plays for me to actually hear this in English. My familiarity with much of the material meant that I heard it in default Swedish. Her accent is very much present and the words sound to me to be delivered in a different way than with Hello Saferide. I’m not sure that makes sense now that I’ve typed it but I believe this to be true. ‘tis my understanding that these translations are literal? Maybe that’s why it took me so long to acclimatise.
The whys and wherefores are not important, all that matters is that you hear it. There’s one new song (“November”) and the other 10 are from the recent “Facit” and the debut. (“You’ll Be On Your Own).
The lyrics are one thing but never underestimate the power of this band, a whole different wall of sound that so perfectly complements the mood. The Arcade-freaking-Fire? Don’t make me laugh. Those Oja-delic guitars and the sense of space in the arrangements captivate a grandeur that you simply won’t find anywhere else. Take the omnichord on “Can I” for example – it haunts the song to punctuate the words, making them all the more poignant.
So, for now you can order it on this internet contraption. A few savvy stores will carry it too. How you get a copy is entirely your business just so long as you do.
Saturday, September 03, 2011
... Hold the presses!! THE TRASH SHACK has g-g-g-gone global and it's shippin' in the super swank sounds for none of yer pounds! That's right,swingers 'n' sinners, Sunday 4th September sees C.B.G.H. (CENTRAL BAR GATES HEAD) open its door to all you rockers,rollers 'n' right out of controllers for a tip-bound sounds 'n' dumpster-dive decor free for all! 'n' when we say free for all we means FREE FOR ALL! The price of admission sure do be... nada! zilch! nowt!!
Top of the shop's Boston U.S.A. garage beat buzz bombs MUCK AND THE MIRES. Signed to E Street band guitar slinger Little Stevens' WICKED COOL RECORDS in the States and Dirty Water on this side of the pond, The Mires blast forth a cool mix of pre Sgt. Pooppers Star club Fab 4 'n' Nuggets garage rockin'. You want 6 fisted, double twisted, oriental super mental rock 'n' roll? Thee Shack got it by the sack!
MINNESOTA VOODOO MEN are a 3-man Japanese juggernaut of treble-oid trouble in the Link Wray/Guitar Wolf mould. THEE MUMMIES CURSE (the world's only tribute/insult to bandage clad 90's lo fi losers THE MUMMIES) bring some SONICS style screech 'n' twango agro to the party.
Glasgow's very own CHARLES RANDOLPH RIVERS' SLIM RHYTHM REVUE sound like quite the crew but this aint no brass 'n' backin' chanter big band, it's a one man rockabilly riot! Ol' Chuck lays on the limbs for his whack-oid whirlwind of country, blues, rockabilly real, real gone rockin'.
1st out the trap o' crap are local lads made bad THE HANDSOME DICKS (currently under summons for breakin' the trade descriptions act) with their Flamin' Groovie garage beat. Hell if you don't dig the Dicks you don' dig Diddley....There you have it, misters 'n' sisters, a full card o' kwality for nothin'. Not enuff you say? O.K. Let's throw in the Trash Shack double o' D.J's spinnin' PUNK JUNK! MOULDY MOD !RANCID ROCKABILLY! ROTTEN ROCK 'N' ROLL! OUT OF CODE ODDITIES!....kick off at 4pm. BE THERE!
email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
BAND PICS 'N' SOUNDS:
TRASH SHACK SUNDAY SHAKE
THE CENTRAL BAR
HALF MOON LANE
TYNE AND WEAR
SUNDAY 4TH SEPTEMBER
MUCK AND THE MIRES (USA)
MINNESOTA VOODOO MEN (JAPAN)
THEE MUMMIES CURSE (EGYPT)
CHARLES RANDOLPH RIVERS' SLIM RHYTHM REVUE (SCOTLAND)
THE HANDSOME DICKS (ENGLAND)
DRESS CODE: TRASHIER