Sunday, May 15, 2022

Jon Spencer and the HITmakers

A good interview with Jon Spencer from 2018:

https://www.loudersound.com/features/now-i-got-worry-an-interview-with-jon-spencer

I had no idea Jon Spencer has a new album out, with the HITmakers (Bob Bert on trash, Sam Coomes from Quasi on synth and vox and M. Sord on drums), called Spencer Gets It Lit. Came out last month. I guess if I followed Brooklyn Vegan better I woulda known about it:

A Quick Trip Through 58 Years of People Makin' Music: The Fall, Gene Clark, Clifton Chenier, Todd Rundgren, Julian Cope, Jean Michael Jarre, BLK JKS, Undeath, Mortuary Drape, Accept, Lil Bastards, and the Pastels

Yesterday I added a few new additions to our record collection. Here's what I picked up, as well as some other stuff I've been listening to (and one thing I haven't listened to yet).

The Fall - Slates 10" re-release from 2016. Originally an EP from 1981. I bought this without realizing -- this 2016 re-release doesn't contain the extra Peel sessions tracks that were added on a follow up re-release in 2021. The 2021 release is readily available and for the same amount I bought this one for. I'm ruined! Anyway, it's a great EP, and the linear notes are a typed letter from from former WFMU music director Brian Turner.

Gene Clark - Collector's Series Early L.A. Sessions. This is a remixed and re-released version of Clark's first album with the Godsin Brothers, remixed five years after it's release by Clark and producer Jim Dickson, and re-released on CBS in 1972. The record didn't sell upon original release, so now that country rock was finding more acceptance via bands like Buffalo Springfield, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, and Clark's former band The Byrds, CBS brought Clark in to re-record vocals and remix these songs. Glen Campbell and Leon Russell were on this album, too, along with the Byrd's Clarence White and Van Dyne Parks on keyboard. Anyway I have With the Godsin Brothers so I thought it would be neat to have this as a companion piece. And it does sound different. Also they took out "Elevator Operator" which I thought was a groovy jam but apparently Clark was embarrassed of it.

Clifton Chenier - Bon Ton Roulet! The King of the bayou, Clifton Chenier's 2nd album from 1967, on Arhoolie Records. All of the songs but one were recorded in Houston in '66, except "Ay Ai Ai," recorded in '64. Cool stuff. Zydeco blues. Arhoolie Records started in 1960 and is still around today.

Todd Rundgren's Initiation, from '75, Rundgren's fourth solo album. Rundgren was on an occult kick, so it's got a long proggy jam on the b-side about Theosophical, New-Agey occult stuff. Which, I'm into in theory, but I'm not sure how often I'll be spinning it, which I read on Wikipedia is sorta what Julian Cope said about it:

"When asked if Rundgren had influenced his music, with perceived influences of Initiation on Queen Elizabeth and Rite², Julian Cope responded that he and Thighpaulsandra loved "A Treatise on Cosmic Fire", "but we both bemoaned the fact that it was recorded so long before ambient music had been defined that Todd treated it as an ever-evolving, almost prog-rock piece. We both loved huge elements of that piece but found that we never listened to it. So we tried to build that Todd-like transcendence into our own piece of music [with Queen Elizabeth]."

The first side of Initiation is rockin' tho. Meanwhile, from Discogs:

"(Initiation) is a one of the longest running single disc LPs ever issued (1 hour, 7 minutes and 34 seconds; side B's total time is almost 35½ minutes). However, because of its fragility and reduced dynamic range, the following note was printed on the inner sleeve: "Technical Note: Due to the amount of music on this disc (over one hour), two points must be emphasized. Firstly, if your needle is worn or damaged, it will ruin this disc immediately. Secondly, if the sound does not seem loud enough on your system, try re-recording the music onto tape. By the way, thanks for buying the album" The final suite 'A Treatise On Cosmic Fire' was sped up by half a step to fit the disc with ease, this is why 'Prana' on the 'Real Man' 45RPM 7'' single sounds slower, as that was the speed that was intended to be heard, except all discs and CD reissues play the sped up version used for the original LP. To slow it to the correct speed, using software such as Audacity, reduce the speed by -5 percent."

Here's a 2015 remaster of a track off the first side, the rockin' "The Death of Rock'n'Roll." That's Rick Derringer on bass:

I've also been on a Julian Cope kick. Here's 30 minutes of his ambient project, Queen Elizabeth, mentioned in the Cope quote above:

Continuing with the noodly electronic theme for a moment, I also picked up a copy of Jean Michael Jarre - Equinoxe. From 1978, this is the follow up to Oxygene, which I have, and Jarre's fourth album. I was reading about these two albums under "Critical Reception" on Wikipedia, and apparently critics really didn't like the electronic stuff at the time. I dig it though, and certainly I'm not the only one, so those critics were wrong. Go figure! Here's a video for "Equinoxe 5":

I found a copy of the Secretly Canadian release of BLK JKS Mystery EP with "Lakeside" on it, I dunno if y'all remember that song from 2009? Neat atmospheric, indie/post-alt type of song, very groovy. They're from South Africa. Apparently they had an album out in 2021. They fell off my radar after "Lakeside." The rest of the Mystery EP is as great as "Lakeside" -- spooky, rockin'. There's some pretty wild psych guitar on the track "Mystery."

I had originally went to the record shop to pick up the latest Undeath album, It's Time...To Rise From the Grave, which is killer old school death metal from Rochester, put out by Prosthetic Records. The band really nails it. Here's the video for "Defiled Again." Brutal fun!

But I got home and I had the wrong album -- they gave me Mortuary Drape's latest, Wisdom-Vibration-Repent instead. Mortuary Drape is Italian death metal. I've listened to about half of this now, and it's good - competent, enjoyable:

I took the Mortuary Drape EP back and it turns out someone else who wanted Mortuary Drape got my Undeath album. So instead I picked up a copy of Captain Beefhart and the Magic Band's Strictly Personal, their second album.

This is The Fall doing "Beatle Bones 'N' Smokin' Stones" for a Peel Session in 1996. "Beatle Bones 'N' Smokin' Stones" is from Strictly Personal.

When we were driving to the record shop, the wife and I heard for the first time Accept's "Pandemic," released on Nuclear Blast Records back in 2010. Why wasn't this song playing everywhere the past few years??!?

Though I didn't buy it, we did look up this single when we got home. Wish I would've bought it! Lil Bastards' "Bitch Get A Job," from the halcyon days of 1992. Youtube comments mention this is the earliest work from a producer called Dougie Diamonds -- I'd never heard of him. This 12" put out on Livin' Large Records appears to have been Lil Bastards' only release:

I've also been getting into the Pastels. Here's "Yoga," from 1995's Mobile Safari. There's a video for this, but the only available version I could find was a shitty upload from someone taping MTV2.

Finally, not as poorly recorded but also not exactly hi-fidelity, check out Julian Cope and backing band pretending to do "I Gotta Walk" on Top of the Pops in 1994:

"I know what your father is saying right now...and he's wrong."

Monday, May 9, 2022

Multiple Releases from Metal Postcard Records: The Legless Crabs, Salem Trials, Legless Trials; The Bordellos, Super Hit; plus Occult Character, Bigflower; Dave Wallfraf, UFO Över Lappland, and Japmn

June 3, 2012 was my first CNQ post. Not quite the apocalypse the Mayans didn't really predict, just a hobby I've kept up with for a decade now. Pat myself on the back. I had plans earlier in the year to keep up with the blog better, which is always a first of the year goal anyway, but this time I meant it.

But it turns out I didn't. I've been posting occasionally as the mood strikes me and that's fine, it's a hobby and what has kept me doing it for a decade.

I also thought I'd do a nice hour or so of a Mixcloud show for the CNQ ten year anniversary, and maybe that'll happen, I dunno. If I feel like it. I've been doggin' Shadowrun: Dragonfall (The Director's Cut) on Steam the past two days. Killer top-down RPG from 2014. I've never played it before, but I played Shadowrun Returns a while ago. There's Hong Kong as well, but I can't remember if I played that, so I don't think I did.

I finished Shadowrun Returns (I always wanna say I "beat" a game, but this is more a completed, fun task than something I won by being good at it). Anyway, both games have been well written, but Dragonfall especially so. The text is immersive and presented in a way it feels like you're listening to your Game Master. The mechanics are a blast, building your little character to spec is well done, and Dragonfall has just been a hoot since the opening scene. Few games scratch that table-top itch like these Shadowrun games by Harebrained Schemes do. I looked up to see if there's going to be another one, and didn't see any news of a new game, but the trilogy is porting to Switch in 2022. I also read that the IP is owned by Topps. Go figure.

To kick things off, how about a little shameless self-promotion. I'm working on a dumb little video to go with this dumb little song, which is also my best work to date, in my IMO. You can check out the whole Legless Crabs album, "Always Your Boy," over on Metal Postcard's Bandcamp page. It is overall a solid noise-slop effort, in my humble IMHO.

Also from me, a couple of new Occult Character tracks. Electro-slop, as I do. These are all Pay What Thou Wilt, so shell out some cash, wouldya? How else am I gonna afford the payola to get this crud on the radio?

And if that wasn't enough from me, how about this new Legless Trials, also from Metal Postcard. Son of El Borko from The Legless Crabs and Salem Goz from Salem Trials team up again for two new tracks, "X-Tyrant," and "Has An X Feel." I dunno why we're on about X but we are, for sure. That's ol' Salem himself on vox on "X-Tyrant," and Son of El Borko barking "Has An X Feel." Salem does all the music and pixie dust, hence why these sound, ya know, good:

Speaking of Salem Trials, the unstoppable UK duo have a lot of new stuff out -- they're one of the few bands I know more prolific than me, and their stuff is actually listenable, so I don't know how they do it. From just a couple of days ago, here's two new rockers, "Dynamite Truck Parts 2 & 3" and "FEAR is All I Can Do":

And, from Metal Postcard, a new nine song, 30+ minute digtial release, Vegaland. I haven't listened to Vegaland yet, but Andy and Russ don't do anything shitty:

I have listened to another Metal Postcard recent release, The Bordellos' I Hate Pink Floyd Without Syd Barrett, a compilation of previously released Bordellos tunes that further prove they're the band that matters most:

The Bordellos have also recently released Onion King Tapes vol. 8, another batch from back when the band was called Onion King. I'm not sure the time period that woulda been -- sometime in the last twenty years, Dan Shea of the band isn't that old, and was a teenager when he started singing in it -- and I'm not sure he was a part of Onion King. At any rate, great stuff, the Bordellos rule:

Metal Postcard has a bunch of other new releases, putting cool stuff out at a frenetic pace, go check it out. One of those recent releases is Super Hit, the solo project of Kyle Handley, who I think is up Portland way? He wrote a 6 song EP where each song is a song he sang to his departed pup, Baby Jean. I made up songs to sing to my cats when they were alive (I haven't re-upped on a pet since they passed a few years ago), so I can relate. Catchy, sweet, Baby Jean forever!

From the UK, CNQ fave bigflower has a new single released yesterday, "The Pill." Mellow psych:

And from last month, an uptempo track from Ivor, "Harder." Psych goodness as always:

Noise artist Dave Wallraf, from Hamburg, Germany, has a new piece out called Cutting Up Men, I listened to it today, it's like listening to whalesongs in space. Super cool and at times panic-inducing, but I had it up really loud in my earbuds to drown out chatter at work. Loved all 40+ minutes of it. There's a limited edition CD you can order as well. Noise enthusiasts should definitely check out Wallraf:

The new UFO Över Lappland, Spökraketer is killer-diller, real deal psychy krautrock from Sweden. Gotta get the vinyl (or CD, or cassette), put out by Philly's Burnt Toast Vinyl:

I have a ton of chrome tabs open on my phone, stuff to share on here. I'll try and whittle that down with each post. Here's japmn, friend of a friend in Portland. Cool stuff from August 2021:

And the soundtrack to a short film, from December, 2021:

I'm gonna play some Shadowrun: Dragonfall.

Monday, April 4, 2022

New punk rock from Bandcamp - from Arizona, Omaha, and Texas to France, Spain, the Netherlands, and Poland

Got some new submissions coming up, but in the meantime how about a dive into Bandcamp new releases, see what type of crazy stuff's come out in the past few weeks.

Critical Threat -- 4 song demo, Arizona oi:

Brand new nutty French powerviolence -- 21 songs, around 20 minutes. One song is called "Our Kids Will Spit On Us," and if that's not a reason for you to check this out, I dunno what you're even doing here. On this planet, I mean:

Three song release from Spanish hc trio Chimpancé:

If it's punk and from the Netherlands, odds are I'll like it. Those folks know how to do it:

Poland's Syf Records, who I've featured a number of times on CNQ, because they're awesome, has another awesome release:

I think I missed this August 2021 release from Omaha's best, BIB:

And finally, shameless self-promotion dept., the Legless Crabs have a new album out on Metal Postcard Records, and between you and me, it kicks ass:

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Clean Nice Quiet eBay Shop

Check out the Clean Nice Quiet eBay page! I'll be posting books, records, comics, and pop culture ephemera. Right now I've got just a few Aleister Crowley related books up, but there'll be more to come: