Friday, August 31, 2007


THE LINEUP (and ticket info) FOR CAVESTOMP! 2007 --

"The GARAGE Rock Festacular!" They said it couldn't be done (hell, WE said it couldn't be done)but... BASEBALL BAT BOMBASTIC-LIKE DRUM ROLL, PUH-LEEZ!


First time in 35 years! And these TWO nights are their ONLY shows!Featuring original members: Gerry Roslie!!! on throat/keyboards,Larry Parypa!!! on guitar, and Rob Lind!!! on tenor sax! With DaveRowland (of The Wailers) on drums!! And Don Wilhelm (of The Daily Flash) on bass!!

THE NEW COLONY SIX!!! Doing all their hits! "I Confess!!!" "At theRiver's Edge!!!" "Dawn Is Breaking!!!

"THE STRAWBERRY ALARM CLOCK!!! Performing their first LP "Incense and Peppermints!" in its entirety! (Complete with surface noise!) Withoriginal members George Bunnell, Lee Freeman, Randy Seoul, Mark Weitz, Gene Gunnels, andSteve Bartek! And now -- the complete lineups!



(support band to be confirmed)

The venue: WARSAW! 261 Driggs Ave., Brooklyn NY! We can't prove it,but this is probably the first time you can get THE SONICS and kielbasa inthe same place since 1964!!! And don't forget Polish beer by the barrel! (Smaller quantities available as well!)

Tickets are $35 in advance, $40 day of show, and THANK YOU JE-ZUS!!$90 for a three day pass!!!! Tickets are available NOW!! NOW!! NOW!! thru TICKETWEB at this direct link:

If you're in the neighborhood, pick your tix up at Ear Wax Records (218Bedford Ave. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn) or Warsaw
(261 Driggs Ave.Greenpoint, Brooklyn -- call (718) 387-0505) starting Wednesday, Sept. 5.

Watch this space for more info!
Hey de ho, kidlets!

The Stripchords return to Londinium next Saturday, to
Mr Eric Ulcer's venerable Corn Rocket Club, to supply some summertime knockers and guitar raunch action, powered by an amazing 65 watts of sound and our new, digital projection system! Support comes from Immortal Lee County Killers fella Sweet Velvet C, and there's also hep weax action from yer very own BigKegShandy and Gluey Louie, plus mein hosts, Eric 'le chemise de bateau' Ulcer and Victor 'silk' Torpedo. AND IT'S FREE! Shenanigans start at 6pm, don't be late... See you at the bar... Selah! The Stripchords

The Stripchords & Sweet Velvet C
The Corn Rocket Club @ The Birdcage
Saturday September 8th
58 Stamford Hill, London N16
BR: Stoke Newington 6pm, FREE

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Kitty and the Kowalskis are headed for Santa Cruz and SF in September!
RIP: Hilly Kristal.
RIP - Hilly Kristal

Jeez, where would we all be without what this guy did?

Just got the news from Phast Phreddie and Mr Percival.

THE GO-GO. Saturday 1st September,
upstairs at Studio 24, Calton Road, Edinburgh.
60's garage,pop, mod, beat, soul, ska, sleazy-listening, groovy soundtracks, psychedelia, girl groups, French pop, and punk. With DJ's Tall Paul Robinson and Angus.
11pm til 3am (possibly 4 or 5am).
Admission £5 - which also includes entry to Retribution.

£4 for students and artists.
£3 before midnight (with a flyer).

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Oh, it's finally decided to let me in... ? Too bad I don't have time to futz around however, it's Sit and Die time again...

Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co. gets back on schedule at Otto's Shrunken Head this week, friend! A rigorous touring schedule (well, rigorous for us, at least) had us missing our last-Thursday-of-every-month show there in July, but we're back on track with a whale of a show this Thursday, August 30th -- featuring a double bill of surf and turf with our pals, Mr. Action & The Boss Guitars! They'll play the surf and we'll play 'em dirty. The scoop...
538 East 14th Street (just west of Avenue B) in ol' Manhattan / Two B-I-G shows, from 8:00 sharp 'til 10:00 -- followed by Mr. Action & The Boss Guitars / With DJ Scratchy ("He's square...He's yellow...He's solid state!"), salty snacks and your barkeep Pam / No cover! / /
And, coming up in September...
FRIDAY, SEPT. 7th -- 8th Annual Hotrod Hoedown (Philadelphia, PA)

SATURDAY, SEPT. 8th -- Brooklyn Country Music Festival (NYC)

SATURDAY, SEPT. 15th -- Rodeo Bar & Grill (NYC)

THURSDAY, SEPT. 27th -- Otto's Shrunken Head (NYC) /
Details galore at...
Yours truly, Michael
Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co.
"Ballads, Boogies & Blues"

Sunday, August 26, 2007

So that’s it. The game’s a bogey. It’s all over and I even made it back to the bunker while it was still light today. But let’s back up a little, to yesterday (Saturday). "Trader’s Dreams" is a documentary about people who trade on Ebay and it’s fairly depressing. The footage of those Ebay Live events is downright scary with their belief bordering nay bleeding into religious fervour. I imagine there are chapters of Ebayers Anonymous sprouting up here and there. And if there isn’t there will be. It’s a strange world, as anybody who takes part in it will know. I’m not sure what I expected this to be. A portal into something a little more positive maybe but what I actually got was visual proof that it’s a morass. The aspect of China and the setting up of a company there to choke the growth of Ebay there was decidedly the stuff of war strategy. The wee guy who looked like Feargal Sharkey at means business and they’ve got a big market right there at home to snare as well as harbouring ambitions to roll over the US business model. Also, elsewhere some Mexican people are putting together their own direct selling tool via Ebay to cut out the guy who currently does a roaring trade in their wares. It all comes down to the mighty buck in the end.

Time to kill and en route to the chippy, Abi Titmuss (I think it was her) walked past and never even said hello. Bisom.

"2 Days In Paris" is the actual title of the movie despite what it sez on the ticket. Julie Delpy introduced the screening and boy can she light up a room. She directed and starred in it with here real parents, who were also at the event. The only review I’d read prior was on Little Fugitive. It’s a great little film with plenty of heart that you should see, preferably on the big screen to get the benefit of Paris, but it’d play out fine on dvd too I guess. Not one of those pirated suckers though mind. The song that plays out over the end credits by Ms Delpy and Nouvelle Vague is really something. In any right thinking dimension it’d be a smash hit of CSS proportions.

The downside of being in Edinburgh yesterday was having to travel home in a train full of pissed up rugby fans. But you have to suffer for your art sometimes…

"What Would Jesus Buy?" is a Louis Theroux type piece about a guy called Reverend Billy and The Church of Stop Shopping. He’s something of a cross between Peter Zaremba and Jay Leno with a little Robert Tilton thrown into the mix. It’s pretty funny and should be played on heavy rotation from October. Maybe it’d kick some sense into the conned-sumer fraternity. The attention to detail and the obvious drive beneath the message has my unequivocal support. Right down to the Disney font they use. I read a couple of reviews to the tune that this falls short but I disagree and wish I’d made it to the screening where Reverend Billy and his crew were in attendance. That must have been a hoot.

Only one to go then… swung by the book festival area and made my way back up Lothian Road. Just sitting on a bollard watching the big screen thing, I looked across toward The Sheraton Grand Hotel and there, coming directly toward me was Julie Delpy, her mother and father. Being a bit flummoxed, I felt however that I should acknowledge the fact that I’d seen her film and she smiled and thanked me. Her mother nodded in agreement and they walked on. Presumably headed for the In Person session at bloody Cineworld while I was going to my final movie of the semester “In Search of A Midnight Kiss” just up the road.

I hit up this one on a tip from Mr Kirk Elder Esq., he’d caught it and had been suitably charmed. It’s a real find and somewhat seasonal too. WWJB? dealt with the run-up to Christmas and this covered the dilemma of he onset of New Years. All that was missing was Amy Allison’s “New Years Eve” in the soundtrack. Shot is exquisite monochrome, the stock makes the LA location look very East Coast. It is a real find that’ll hopefully find it’s way into theatres across the world soon. So there you have it, all done and dusted. I’ll do a quick resume with links, etc., maybe tomorrow or something. There’s two weeks of other stuff and a backlog of music to get stuck into. Eventually.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

From Mr Spence, I know it's last minute but hey...

"Hey Folks!

THE GREASE MONKEYS are back thru Embra this Saturday playing with the capital's finest... so come on out. Here's the lowdown -

SATURDAY 25TH AUGUST at THE ARK, Wellington Place, Edinburgh; 9 -til- 3; £4

first band on at 10.30pm... THE GIN GOBLINS, THE GREASE MONKEYS,
THE ROHYPSTERS and DICK DANGEROUS & THE LOVE BASTARDS's been billed as a "Turbonegro Aftershow Party", but actually theirs is the warm-up show for this! Word is that it's gonna be packed, so best be there by 10 to avoid disappointment. Anyways, hope to see y'all there.Rock On! ..............Jim"
We're on the home straight now, 4 movies to go... note to self - check what sodding cinema the screening is at. Actually, I just did that for today and I would have been wrong again. Eejit! Anyway, the documentary "LYNCH" is something fans will dig muchly. It contains the stream of conciousness wit and wisdom and the customary handwaving. Filmed during the making of "Inland Empire", it underlines the special qualities of the man. Non-devotees would perhaps wonder what the heck it was all about but you never know. It's a nice little piece. Strange that this screening wasn't sold out which makes me wonder why the Sunday am screening is in such a large room? I imagine that it's all under control. Seeing it's the Sabbath though, I'm headed for "What Would Jesus Buy".

So, I head up the road for my yearly "Lynch" compared fix. I fall for it every time. Hoping that something will actually live up to that tag. Well, this was 87 minutes long and it felt like 187. Not that it didn't look good, it would make a cool backdrop for a band or something but as entertainment, I'd have to say cut it to 45 minutes and it might have a chance. Watching it is perhaps meant to portray the unfulfilment of the main character but by the end of it you'll be looking at your timepiece. I did make it to the bitter end unlike quite a few that shot the crow as it creaked on. And on some more. For much of the film though, I was preoccupied with wondering when it would all be over. If you ever see it then it's the cinema-going equivalent of the seemingly endless hump that's filling the screen. There are a couple of Lynch-like moments and the black and white finish adds an eerie mood but it doesn't get nasty or interesting or anything. It's like an art installation loop. Perhaps a homage to Douglas Gordon? Not really recommended unless you fancy a wee snooze in the dark.

Of course, you could follow this person's premise...

Friday, August 24, 2007

Now here's something to look forward to...
It was a long day yesterday, conned-puter course all day then up to the Filmhouse to try and get a ticket for "Castells". Was too late though and ended up seeing "The Simpsons Movie" instead. It was OK, three times the length of a TV episode with about the same amount of really good stuff as you'd get in one. There were maybe 10 people in the audience. Anyways, following that I saw The Nukes at Henry's Cellar Bar. It's a pretty good venue but being below a Chinese Restaurant it honks a wee bit. And I'm not big on Chinese food. Anyway with surf-tinged blasters like "Last Tango In Pilrig", I think you folks would like them. They're doing an Instore at Elvis Shakespeare on Saturday afternoon in Edinburgh (2pm) to promote "Picnic In Peking". Anyway it was all capped off by a visit to "Born To Be Wide" where the great Captain Cruickshank was doing his DJ bit. And then it was off for the last train, jst prior to turning intae the proverbial pumpkin.

And on the subject of Cowabunga type antics, on the west coast - The Beat Poets will be shooting the curl at Blackfriars in Glasgow this coming Sunday, 26th August. They'll also be at the Merchant City Fest but I'll remind you 'bout that closer to the time.

More film festival today, back later tonight or first thing tomorrow. Unless I get a better offer, which is somewhat unlikely...

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I think I'm losing it. Having spent the past few days in darkened theatres, any sense of time and space is mushed. I'm sure the Filmhouse members screening of was supposed to be Sunday but the girl on the counter in the conference centre sez no. A bit like the computer in the Little Britain sketch. Anyway, no matter, it gave me longer to catch up with my old mucker, Mr K. Elder. Another indication of mind meltdown came a little later with the screening of “... A Bude Hůř (It’s Gonna Get Worse)". For some reason, I thought that it was an old film reactivated but no, it was shot last year. Apparently blown up from 16mm black and white to 35mm same, the background is here and you can find a trailer of sorts here. Beware though, it is NOT WORKPLACE FRIENDLY! There's an element of bizarro world Bill Forsyth-ness to the otherwise bleak canvas of being set in 70's Czechoslovakia. The centre figure is almost Jesus-like and his mate Pig Pen (no Grateful Dead relation) looks like Roky channeling David Thomas. Soundtrack is groovy too and includes The Plastic People of The Universe.

A strangely optimistic optimistic piece in spite of the overall mood, every citizen is seemingly disenfranchised from the relentless oppression. Social deprivation? We don’t know the meaning of the word. The singing of “It’s A Long Way to Tipperary” during a funeral scene is definitely odd. Like somebody mistook it for “Auld Lang Syne”.

Had a night off on Monday but Tuesday’s burst of culture came in the shape of “Comrades In Dreams”. A look at cinemas in India, the US, Ouagadougou and North Korea and the people who run them. I think I would have liked it more if it had been edited into four specific sections, the jumping back and forth seemed to make it seem longer than it actually is. It would have made it easier to get a beat on the individuals for sure and would have made the North Korean section even more surreal. “Titanic” is dissected and is also the subject of the strangest homage I’ve seen in a long time. This would be good playing first on a double bill with "Cinemania".

No more movies until Friday, kicking off with the "LYNCH" documentary… lot of stuff to process through the old napper in the meantime though.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Another day, another movie but no time for reportage. Knackered due to over-extension and just plain running on empty. Need to conserve my energies and all going well will be able to bring you up to some kind of peep by this time tomorrow. Need to figure out what I'm going to see on Sunday so I can score the tickets on Wednesday. It's complicated. As, it seems, is everything...

Monday, August 20, 2007

Awrabest to the great Eric "Roscoe" Ambel who hits the big five-zero today. They'll be hoppin' and boppin' at that old Lakeside tonight alright. Have a good one chief!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

My favourite part of the EIFF is the documentary section. It's the most likely place to find something that won't end up in the local multiplex within weeks. So Saturday meant I could feasibly squeeze in three screenings. Might even have pitched for $ if I'd known the weather was going to be so crap. Anyway The Monastery is a real find. About an 82 year old man who wants to turn his castle into such a refuge. Seven years in the making, it has all the hallmarks of something that's done for love and not money. The reward is in seeing it. It's out on dvd later on in the year but see it on a big screen if you can.

Billy The Kid has been getting great kudos at similar gatherings across the world. I was kind of hoping for an "American Movie" but it's kind of stranger than that. Finding out that it was shot in 8 days perhaps explains the seemingly contrived situations. There was a lot to get in. It's like a twisted, potted version of The Wonder Years. The subject, Billy Price, is a peculiar little guy who loves AC/DC and Kiss. His urges and demons are in constant turmoil beyond your average teenager angst. There's a bit of an "awwwww" factor that kicks off as pity and works the audience round to rooting for him. It's not staged but the story is actually better structured than most regular features.

Surgically removed from the "Grindhouse" package, Death Proof is good, old-fashioned recycled exploitation coupled with the feel of 70's US TV shows. There was no Mike Post music in evidence however. On the down side, it's too long but there's more than enough in there to keep readers of this thing occupied. On the upside, it has Rose McGowan. Kurt Russell is great as Stuntman Mike and the soundtrack is a shredder. The "second half" is particularly good, like an episode of The Dukes Of Hazzard directed by Russ Meyer and it's all capped off with April March's "Chick Habit" (both french and english versions) blasting over the end credits. Worth seeing a couple of three times probably. Maybe some enterprising local cinema will get together showing it as originally planned when the Rodriguez section comes out. Although getting the "trailers" might be a problem. Anyway, despite some reservations on my part, pastiche has never been so much fun. Forget "The Bourne Bollocks", taste some real high octane daftness.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

I was never a Joy Division fan. The early stuff in particular was quite weedy to my mind and all wrapped in that gritty darkness the frankly seemed a bit overdone. In later years, Martin Hannett developed an inherent heartbeat to create an additional dimension and "Atmosphere" and "She's Lost Control" have never sounded better. But anyway, the fact that Ian Curtis was in a group is almost secondary here. It's a cracking looking film and Anton Corbijn says he has no trouble with composition. No shit Sherlock, that's some kind of understatement. This is like a classic English "kitchen sink" drama directed by Jim Jarmusch. Shot in black and white, the stock is so rich, I swear that I could see vivid colour in the monochrome. Beautiful and stark. I noticed ex-EIFF Artistic Director Lizzie Franke in the cinema and it seems she was involved in the production but anyhow. This actually lives up to the plaudits and pretty much captures the Curtis descent into the maelstrom. When it comes out, see it in the cinema. This is one film that doesn't look like it was created to play forever on TV. It was made to be watched in somewhere like the old Scala, The Cameo, Filmhouse or whatever your favourite "indie" is. Presuming you have one. This made me want to investigate the subject and surely there can be no better testament than that. Q&A was pretty good too, compared to the JW fiasco. Why didn't Hannah McGill "chair" that?

Friday, August 17, 2007

Fancy a frank from Nathan’s and a twirl on the Wonder Wheel, friend? Well, then perhaps you’d best join SUSQUEHANNA INDUSTRIAL TOOL & DIE CO. this SATURDAY, AUGUST 18th, for the 2007 CONEY ISLAND ROCKABILLY FESTIVAL! As part of an ambitious four-day event combining bands, burlesque, roller derby and sideshow acts, Saturday’s show is set to run from noon until 8pm
–- with our 45-minute set scheduled for 4pm –- and featuring a lineup that includes The Tombstone Brawlers, The Fury 3, Jason James & The Bay State House Rockers, The Fisherman Orchestra, Sean Kershaw & The New Jack Ramblers, The 56 Kid, The Holy Roller Sideshow, sideshow acts and more.
It’s all happening outside on Brooklyn’s famous Coney Island boardwalk, rain or shine, right in front of Astroland Amusement Park, and it’s free! Sponsored by Deno's Wonder Wheel, Sam Ash Music, The Onion, Coney Island Lager and Cockabilly Records.
See you on the Cyclone!
Yours truly, Michael

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Can you say "wasted opportunity"? Dammit, I just got back from my inaugural EIFF visit of 2007 and I'm not altogether happy. You see, I've been going on about this for weeks. Some folks might even have noticed. The great JW comes to Edinburgh to support this Jeff Garlin directed film of his "stand-up" or whatever you want to call it. I've read some iffy reviews of it but it's pretty great and captures the guy as I believe he is. Sharp as a very sharp tack and vicious. Not so much near the knuckle as indeed up to the elbow. Then comes the much-vaunted Q&A which for want of a better expression did not go well. I've never heard a more disenfranchised, lame affair and who was to blame for this?, the bloody audience. John valiantly tried to steer the ship from running aground several times before thinking to himself, "sod this for a game of soldiers". This should have taken place at The Cameo or at Filmhouse. Not in the soulless portals of sodding Cineworld. Having canvassed hard to put bums on seats for this, I felt a little embarrased. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity with a true genius that was fluffed. And I don't mean that in some double entendre type fashion that the man himself might use. Whoever the guy was that tried to conduct the "interview" was out of his league. Wasn't Mark Kermode available? So, if you're a Waters fan, there's much to dig in the film. Jeff didn't come so that meant no Lar and no Suzie either. What should have been the crowning event of the festival went splat. Let's see how tomorrow pans out...
RIP - Max Roach
It was 30 years ago, etc... but 15 of those past I was in Memphis with Brother Randall and Sister Donna. It was great and then we headed on up to Springfield, more about which later. Seeing that there's a timely new Skele-release on the streets!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Well thanks for asking but in order to have writer's block then you have to be a writer. And that counts me out on a number of fronts...

It was one of those all weather drives to the stalag this morning. The flesh and the spirit were somewhat less willing even than usual. "It'll soon be the weekend" was the message from from Wreckless Eric's "Big Smash" via the cd player. That seemed to be recklessly optimistic given the circumstance but it's a good thing to be reminded that there is light at the end of that there tunnel thing. Amy and Eric stopped by here on their way back south on Saturday night. It was great to see them and they were in fine fettle. I was privileged to get a wee preview of some songs they're working on for a forthcoming release. Grand stuff that sits outside of any pigeonholes either of them are use to being stuffed into. They have a show in France soon so if you’re within range then go catch something very special indeed.

Like I mentioned in my short intro to last night’s late post scramble to get Ben’s Blasters report up, I saw the Hamell show again last night. During the show I got to thinking how hard it must be to focus and do this again and again. It seems like it's more difficult than just belting out songs in a conventional set. There are parts where the tempo of the storytelling and strumming intersect to drive home the message. Is this stuff really based on true stories? Very probably but the way he tells them has an extra edge. It's not comedy but humour comes in many shapes and sizes and when it's as sharp as this you won't even feel the gnashers biting yer arm off. He'll tell you "this isn't for everybody" but I was thinking that maybe it is. That it's exactly the dose of salts a lot of people need. As before, the "fuck it" chorus raised the roof. It was a horrible, wet night in Edinburgh but at that point the feeling of release was palpable. I guess he's halfway through the run now and it seems like the momentum is in high gear. See him. What else would you be doing between 6 and 7pm if you're in Auld Reekie onyhow?

Film Festival opens tonight and hits full throttle tomorrow. The great John Waters is in town, let them festivities begin.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

It's kinda late on a school night but lucky for me that Brother Ben has sent this report on the recent visit of Phil Alvin and Co to the Windy City limits... so without any further ado...

The Blasters - FitzGerald's Nightclub, Berwyn (near Chicago),
IL - August 4th 2007

FitzGerald's is a perfect spot for (American) music, where fans go because they love the real stuff. The owners created a wonderful "out of the way" roadhouse, where you can catch a cookin' band and eat some authentic down-home food. The Blasters (as well as Dave Alvin, and countless others) are no strangers to FitzGerald's. In fact, it has a yearly American Music Festival during the 4th Of July Weekend where countless artists gather to show off and have a good time (in the past, you'da find Dave A., The Blasters, Robbie Fulks, Sleepy LaBeef, and other eclectic acts). Good sound, fun atmosphere and affordable booze.

I had some trepidation about catching The B's, minus Mssrs. D Alvin and Bill Bateman, but any concern quickly went out the window once they took the stage and kicked in with the opening notes and chords of "Dark Night". Initially Phil had to battle through an upstart guitar cable but fought through and managed to belt out a Big Joe Turner tune while Billy Davis (their go-to man) grabbed him some new equipment. Phil was in strong form, his voice was full, soulful and without any signs of doing this gig for nearly 30 years. The grimace was there the entire show, it seemed. Those teeth, the sweat, amazing stuff. When this man takes the stage, watch out -- he ain't no redneck from LA, he's every blues shouter, soul singer, harp blower that's come before him. For my taste this night, Phil's capper was a tribute to the Godfather of Soul with a blistering Please, Please, Please. I can happily report that this was one of the coolest and right-on James Brown covers I've ever heard.

And the rest of the band? John Bazz is just...a killer on the bass. Going up and down the neck, rollin' with the beats and bendin' those strings like they were nothing at all. Jerry Angel was also more solid than I had hoped for, and Keith Wyatt played some great leads, emulating Dave's recorded ones while still managing to expand and do different things. Even they would have to admit they have big shoes to fill, and it would be unfair to compare them to Dave and Bill as this point since they've been playing with Phil and John. Are they as good as the original Blasters?

No, of course not because they're different. They make no attempts at being them. These Blasters are a tight unit that plays how they play. And I think it also shows a bit of respect towards the older compositions in mixing up the arrangements a little without taking anything away from them. The set was mostly made up of more recent tunes from 4-11-44 while still kicking out some of their more well-known classics like "Long White Cadillac", "Marie Marie", and "American Music", while also tossing in an old live gem, "Rock Boppin' Baby". The newer tunes, like "The Boneyard", "Rebound" and "It's All Your Your Fault" all sound significantly stronger live. It's my guess that the band has gotten tighter having played consistently again over the past few years. Phil had fun with the audience, joking about baseball (incurring some boo's and minor applause when mentioning Mr. Bonds and The Cubs). He got sweaty, he was exhausted by the end but, like the rest of the band he gave his all. Now I just have to cross my fingers and hope the Alvin Brothers can bury the hatchet again and make it back to Chicago sometime soon...

I wouldn't be holding my breath Ben. I think that's unlikely but who knows. And that's about it from this airt for tonight. Saw Hamell again tonight and then cut across town to meet up with my old mucker Liam on a whistle stop from Belfast. I'm looking at the time thinking that in 8 hours, I gots to get in commute mode. But at the rate the rain is hammering on the windows maybe the roads'll be flooded. To quote the great Al Bundy, "Like I could ever get what I want". All gearing up for John Waters visit to the capital this coming Thursday.

Monday, August 13, 2007

RIP - Merv Griffin
Glasgow's Monorail Film Club is proud to announce that Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand will be introducing Joseph Losey's creepy 1963 masterpiece, The Servant on Sunday 19th August, 7.30pm at the GFT. Scripted by Harold Pinter and starring Dirk Bogarde and James Fox, The Servant is one of the key films of 1960s British cinema. It takes a sharp look at British class relations via a dramatic turning of the tables between a dainty Oxbridge twit bachelor (played by a young and dapper Fox) and his contemptuous manservant (Bogarde).

After the screening you can join us for drinks and an informal discussion in Cafe Cosmo. We very much recommend booking tickets in advance.

GFT, 12 Rose Street, Glasgow G3 6RB t: 0141 332 8128.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

45 Revolutions (Volume 1, UK/Ireland, 1976/1979) by Mario Panciera (Hurdy Gurdy Books)

Close to 1200 pages, this is the ultimate reference guide to UK and Irish punk, new wave, powerpop, indie and whatchamightcallit 45s from the late 70s. "Insane" is the word that first comes to mind when browsing the pages of this book; 2000+ artists, 3000+ singles and 4500+ picture sleeves and label shots in full color. The skope is amazing; detailed biographies (on every band!), release dates and jaw dropping info on various pressings of discs you thought you knew all about (My Chiswick Records want list has doubled after checking the various entries!) Just get it, that's all I can say, 'cause this truly is the Encyclopedia Britannica for record geeks like me 'n you.
This baby doesn't come cheap tho', with a list price of 85 Euros, but Lost & Found seems to be the cheapest dealer offering 'em for just €60. (heck, I'd gladly pay a months' earning for a US edition!)
A public information announcement from Tom Phobic...

"Hi Kids, get your grubby selves down to the Dirty Water Club on Thursday, August 23rd for a special featuring THE STALKERS (from New York City) and their own brand of mischief and mayhem wrapped up in perfect garagepunkpopsongs. Expect a Star Spangle in their midst on guitar deputising duty making this a unique one off occasion. They're flying over to do the Reading and Leeds festivals but require a little limbering up session beforehand to get their juices going, and it is up to us dear reader, to welcome them with open arms and deep pockets and make sure when then go back home they have a suitcase full of great rock n roll memories (or at the very least some hand luggage), and a maybe a hangover ot two.

To aid & abet them in this quest, THE PHOBICS and THE SWANKERS have been enlisted for their proficiency and expertise in this area. All that is missing is a huge throbbing crowd and that's where you come, come in on Thursday 23rd August or be a boring stopathomebillynomates.

Another date to stick in your diary is Friday 21st September when we play a Swamp Productions gig at The Living Bar. 443 Coldharbour Lane, London, SW9 8LN. This venue has an excellent location, only 200 metres from Brixton Tube so even Moyni will be able to find it.

We are on around 11pm with a triple shot of rising glam punk rock n roll talent, Bubblegum Screw + Rapidfire Radio + Geisha kicking off proceedings and its FREE Yup, FREE! Finally, we might be doing Crossfields Festival in Deptford , but more news on that if it happens. Keep September 2nd free just in case.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

RIP - Anthony H Wilson

I met Tony Wilson a handful of times over the years and on one of those occasions, at New Music World in Glasgow, I gave him an Angel Corpus Christi cd. He was a very smart man and although I wasn't a rabid Factory fan, you can't get away from the fact that he was a true original. A character and a maverick. And he was only bloody 57, what's up with that?

There's a story that Claude Bessy (of Slash magazine) once made Tony a pirate copy of ET where he tacked the closing credits on right after the little guy dies. Now I'm not sure if that story is actually true but it rattled into my noggin every time I saw Tony Wilson on TV or wherever. I always figured that if I met him again that I'd ask if that indeed happened.

My thoughts are with his friends and family. Some of whom I know stop in here from time to time. Lefsetz tribute here.

This event will make the screening of "Control" next weekend at the EIFF even more intense.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Wednesday was cancelled. It did sort of exist but not in any tangible sense. I'd spent more time than usual staring at a screen all day and that induced the phenom known as a "nipping heid". One of those where the slightest movement causes considerable discomfort. This happens periodically and is not conducive to even attempting to think let alone blog or anything along those lines. I'm pretty sure I'd have heard a bomb going off in here but maybe it was one of those newfangled - smart - quiet ones. It sure bloody looks like one went off. There's stuff every-bleedin'-where but where to start with the sorting? I oughtta switch on the TV and ponder that.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Duglas Bandit on Lee Hazlewood...

"I wanted to write something here about Lee Hazlewood, who died after a 3 year battle with cancer on August 4th.
I wanted to say something about how his remarkable records were often more like "movies for the ears" rather than just songs, a bit like the Shangri-las but completely different.
I wanted to say how he would live on through the legacy of not just his own recording but the multitude of artists that have made music with clear shades of Lee in them (Johnny Thunders, Belle & Sebastian, Nick Cave, My Bloody Valentine, Dean & Britta, Richard Hawley, The Vaselines, Lambchop, Pulp, Sonic Youth, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Isobel Campbell, Primal Scream, BMX Bandits are just a few).
I wanted to say something about his moustache, about his exile in Sweden, about Duane Eddy's Girl on Death Row, about Dino, Desi & Billy and about the recordings with Suzi Jane and with Nancy.
The first time I ever heard Some Velvet Morning it moved me in a way only a few records ever move you in a life time and it still does "it" for me on every listen.
But somehow I couldn't get together the words to say what I wanted to say about Lee Hazlewood...sorry about that. But never fear I discovered this set of posts from Lee's most famous "musical wife" Nancy that I think say much more than any old words could ever say."
Thanks also to Tony (Ron) Thewlis for also sending that link.

Dean Wareham on Lee from a Dean and Britta myspace bulletin...

Just back from a weekend at the beach, launched my computer and found five different emails about Lee Hazlewood's passing yesterday at age 78. It has been a week of big losses – Bergman, Antonioni, and now Hazlewood. Inspirations all, but it is Hazlewood whose death hits me the hardest. We put "Soul's Island" by Lee on the stereo last night and drank a glass of wine in his honor.

I spent an afternoon with Lee in 1999. I had been given the opportunity to conduct an interview – on the phone – for CMJ magazine. Figuring this might be my only chance to meet in person, I bought myself a ticket to Orlando, FL, where he was living. We spent the afternoon at his house near the airport, drinking white wine, smoking cigarettes and chatting about his records (he also signed my entire Hazlewood collection).

I was first given a mixtape of Lee's songs in 1990, while touring Europe with Galaxie 500, and began looking for his out-of-print vinyl wherever I traveled. Great titles like Requiem for An Almost Lady, Hazlewoodism: Its Cause and Cure, and my personal favorite Love & Other Crimes.

Hazlewood was an American treasure. A pioneering producer of early rock and roll (producing Duane Eddy) – Phil Spector even visited Lee's studio to learn how he made these records sound so great. A wonderful songwriter, from "These Boots Are Made For Walking," "Some Velvet Morning," "My Autumn's Done Come," "Your Sweet Love" (which string arrangement we borrowed for "Night Nurse") on through "The Old Man", the final song on his most recent album, Cake or Death. And a hugely charismatic singer, whose pipes come at you like the voice of God (he explained exactly how he got that effect). Sure, there are more versatile singers, but his was a voice I always wanted to listen to. Many is the night I have laid on the sofa listening to Nancy & Lee's sing "You've Lost That Loving Feeling".

We will continue to do so, but it won't be the same.

Dean, August 6, 2007

Click here for excerpts from my 1999 interview with Lee.

Monday, August 06, 2007

When I got in last night I fully meant to post a review but when I got the Lee news it kind of bummed me out. I couldn’t find the actual facts until early this morning. Running at the last minute, a part of this am was taken up by mild solvent abuse and I’m still kind of under the influence. I guess the adequate ventilation wasn’t what I figured. Punk bloomin’ rock, that’s me. Out and out.

“Bill Hicks, Hunter S. Thompson and Joe Strummer all rolled into one” might be one way of putting it but I never considered Ed Hamell to be a comedian before. Sure he’s funny but it’s peculiar to consider this show as being outside the rock’n’roll arena. It’s still Robbie Fulks via Lou Reed to Ben Vaughn in a satirical context to me. But this setting is a great twist. One that more “entertainers” should consider and the 6pm start time is perfect. Music has sort of become a cul de sac on the way to the club/disco/call it what you fucking like. Hellhole would be my choice. It’s all gotta be over by 10pm or 10.30 at the latest because the alcopop guzzlers are the one’s that keep the venues that are left, open. But anyway, this guy has more energy than your closest power station. The material that makes up The Terrorism (of Everyday Life) is more observation than outright song but the evangelical nature of the delivery makes it part sermon/part seminar. The latter is when we all get to scream “Fuck It!” at the top of our voice several times. Like bringing a wee touch of the Grande Ballroom to the Edinburgh Festival. So yeah, an hour well spent. He’ll start off by telling you that the show isn’t for everybody but bollocks to that. The world would be a better place if it was.

The show is on all through August (except the 15th) so if you can, get your tail down there. If you want to read his diary blog as to how he rates the shows then you’ll find that here. He’s hoping to shoot a film of the show during this run for release on dvd in early 08. Last night I think he hit full stride, yell for “Kick Out The Jams” if you go. Next time I sure as hell will. Tickets, go get ‘em!

And now I've discovered a whole wheen of Stereo Total videos on YouTube. I might be here for a while...

Sunday, August 05, 2007

RIP - Lee Hazlewood
Snag this Hellacopters item at Bootleg Booze before they're all gone!
Brother Ben had the pleasure of attending a service by the very Rev. Roky Erickson on Friday night. Here's his report... (cheers Ben)

Roky Erickson & The Explosives, 8/3/07 @ The Abbey Pub, Chicago

I'm admittedly not a Roky Erickson/Elevators fanatic, but I knew a good thing and dig the stuff I do have. Heck, I think I might even prefer The Spades "YGMM" over the TFE version, but you can blame Brother Patrick for that and it's a discussion for another time... So, when I saw the opportunity to catch the Legend in a small setting, I took it -- I'm not completely stupid. Now, over the last couple of years, he has played in Chicago a couple of times -- but, unfortunately, at festivals (Lollapalooza this year, and Intonation Fest last year, I believe), and I avoid festivals. Not that there's anything wrong with 'em, really -- just, most of the music I won't like and I don't do big sweaty, stinky, obnoxious crowds. I'll leave that for Lindsay... Like I said, I knew I had to catch him, because who knew how long this resurgence and his health would last? I even took a chance since this was an "Official Lollapalooza After Party". But, for $25, it was well worth the experience. Incredibly well worth it.

Not a lot of people showed up, which is their collective loss (my estimate is around 200-400 hundred bodies). My guess is the fans of Roky found the show, and that's what really mattered. Older folks, hippies, garage fans, rock fans, even some mighty square lookin' people were there, so Roky clearly cuts across demographics -- which is a wonderful thing. I did expect that some were there due to the film that was released on dvd recently (which I still haven't caught -- after this show, I think I'll bump it up to the top of my Netflix queue). When I arrived, The Last Vegas were already playing (thank gawd), but they were painfully inappropriate to the evening. I won't go into them much, as I could write a whole review of everything they did wrong, but I can sum it up with this analogy: post-1980 AC/DC teaming up with Motorhead but taking themselves too seriously. Oh, and within 15 minutes of me being there, the drummer broke into a solo........I'll leave it at that.

So Roky took to the stage around 11pm, and proceeded to kick out a tight 45-60 minute set. He was in strong form, with only some "thank yous" between tunes (let the guitarist do the talking). His voice, his playing -- everything was spot on. It doesn't seem possible that the Man would be back up there on the stage...but he was, and is. After everything he's gone through, Roky deserves the accolades he's been receiving over the last number of years. Thankfully, he's been able to pull himself up and I was witness to this magic. That's really what it was, magic. He played the "hits", mostly -- Bloody Hammer, Creature With The Atom Brain, Cold Night For Alligators, Don't Shake Me Lucifer, Starry Eyes, The Beast, Two-Headed Dog, You're Gonna Miss Me -- all dead on. The band was tight, the guitarist nailed some fiery leads, and rhythm section was great (though coulda used more bass in the mix). Roky even blazed his way through a few leads here and there, leading the band through The Beast and a stompin' take on Before You Accuse Me (how appropriate for a Chicago show, eh?). (a note: his son, Jagger, was introduced, since he was skulking around the stage a bit, filming the show with a camera)

If The Beast comes to your town...go, don't think twice, it's not alright. You may never get the chance to catch him again. This is an artist. A survivor of a era that most of us only get to hear about. Give the man your money... he's certainly earned it and can finally appreciate it.

Now if you'll all excuse, I'm off to Berrrrr-wyn to catch The Blasters @ FitzGerald's...look for a resume of that one in due course.
The trawl continues and I came across this from the days when xerox was still pretty much in its infancy. However you'll get the idea and the scary thing is that it's only a couple of weeks away from being 29 bloody years ago. The Rezillos also made an appearance at Orbit, the local record store where I worked on weekends, before the show. Phoney Beatlemania may have bitten the dust but the Rez virus was all enveloping full blown. Expect a further outbreak this coming October...

J has been in touch from sunny climes and provided the following links to info on the upcoming HDM foray into the world of literature... Black Book and Amazon...

Saturday, August 04, 2007

You know how it is, you're looking for something and you can't find it. However you find a letter from Steven Patrick Morrissey that you haven't seen for, oh at least 20 plus years. By the way, I didn't go which was maybe daft in retrospect but that's the way history tends to crumble sometimes.
Ramones Converse and a ton more other fine things to burn away precious time at Bedazzled!

Break out those Pleasure Seekers and RAK 45's for the Suzi Q book signing tour (links courtesy of Mr Percival).

Some background...

Friday, August 03, 2007

Just sitting here digging a slice of CAKE (just missed Smashed Gladys but I'll dig out "Social Intercourse" an give the neighbours a treat later) , thinking about this weekend's activities. These include seeing Hamell On Trial in Edinburgh and getting this joint in order for several visiting dignitaries.

Talking about Auld Reekie, was sad to hear this morning that Romanes and Paterson on Princes Street was on fire. No, that doesn't mean doing really well, it means bloomin' well burning. Anybody who has been here will maybe know it as the tartan shop that has a nice wee tearoom upstairs where they knock out a pretty decent haggis panini. We're all about the fusion cuisine here y'know. Anyway, I always picked up certain confectionery in there but I guess that's all gonna be knocked on the head. certainly for now. Also thought it was cool how the first part of the name was an anagram of youknowwho and I'm not generally that easily pleased. Here's the link to the story.

Smoke damaged "See You Jimmy" hats anyone?
RIP - Tommy Makem

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Edinburgh 60s-retro club, THE GO-GO continues with its 4th comeback in 7 years at Studio 24, this Saturday 4th August. Playing garage, mod, soul, ska, punk etc. 11pm til 3am. DJ Tall Paul Robinson said: "All this venue-hopping has actually been quite a good thing in the long-run. Now we're on a 2-for-1 door with a rock club. All the rockers come upstairs to request The Kinks and are amazed to see females wearing primary colours. Some of them even dance to Wooly Bully."