It's fair to say Gary Panter's oogled the the eyes of a couple've generations've dillweeds with his work via RAW & Pee-wee's Playhouse. Then there's thems of us what go back 'n had a 1st gander courtesy've Ralph Records ('Buy Or Die', what a tagline!) & if we was lucky, caught Dal Toyko as it come down, serialized in the L.A. Reader. But the whole've Dal Tokyo had evaded me for many moons. See, after the run in the 'Reader, the strip got picked up & was continued in some Japanese Reggae magazine. JAPANESE REGGAE? I know, it's too early for such a pixillatin conundrum, still, Dal Tokyo was back. Then in the early 90's a French imprint by the name've Sketch collected the original 63 entries into a slim paperback edition, but them others was still as rare as a Yakitori bar in Columbus, Ohio. Add to all this a few years of whispers 'n nods that they's all might finally be comin out in one book & you've got yourself an armful've blood blisters. The welt've reality, self inflicted physical totems what limned the crushed dreams of a modest few. And then one fine summer day, viola! There it was.Or here it is. Either way,in hand it be.
And a stunning collection it is too, from format, to scope, from beginning to end. If you's is unfamiliar, well, I's can't say there's really anything else like it. Perhaps imagine if Henry Darger drawed 'n illustrated Philip K Dick's 'The Three Stigmata's Of Palmer Eldritch'. Or's if someone discovered some lost narrative art by Hieronymus Bosch, etched 'n painted inside the wall of a cave. On the moon. Yeah, it's like them there.And yet it's not.To be blunt, Dal Toyko is one of the great original works've American arts & letters combined. Makes a perfect companion what to wile away the sands've time. Why not make it your vacation destination for 2013? Tell your travel agent Rozz Tox sent ya!
Check out; http://www.garypanter.com/site/ also http://www.fantagraphics.com/browse-shop/dal-tokyo.html?vmcchk=1
I know it don't seem possible for a label what's only spit out two 7" releases to reach such an elevated status but that's how the cookie crumbles sometimes. If this were an MLB post season series & some banjo hitter come off the bench 'n jacked two over the fence what won some games there's every likelyhood he'd get the nod for MVP. So why not Orgone Toilet? Cause there's some serious Gene Tenace/'72 World Series lumber-thump goin on here. What's especially great about both these gems is the embodiment of '77/'78 style've grok that's workin, regionally speakin. Throughout the far corners've the midwest 'n south (specifically)was thems enlightened ne'er-do-well's what took their cue from The Ramones 'n tweaked that sound so's to enable they's own atomic discharge. These one percenters got Punk for the laughs but also embraced this misguided modus vivendi for all the menace they could squeeze out've it too. So's listenin to No Bails 'n Buck Biloxi And The Fucks deep fry into the future, they's done gone & whacked into a pile equal parts 'Teen Slime' by The Dogs + The Pagans 'What's This Shit Called Love',dousin it w/some sonic stutter care've Cinecyde, then smotherin all that w/the entire contents of Screaming Mee Mees 'Live In The Basement'. These is two of the most perfect 7" stomach ache's anyone could ask for, right here, right now. Both courtesy of Orgone Toilet-a Zoilo Versalles in a Harmon Killebrew world.
Find'em here; http://www.goner-records.com/ Also check out Orgone Toilet over to Facebook at; http://www.facebook.com/pages/Orgone-Toilet/466340043400336
Virginia is one old bitch of a state. She's got some time lines for sure! Just think, if Jamestown had succeeded 400 years ago we wouldn't have to celebrate Pilgrims by pretendin to enjoy the company of alls our annoyin relatives on the fourth Thursday of every November. There never would've been an angry Pop-Pop sneakin in bites've taters durin grace, nada to cousin Pockets (he'd have slept in'em if he could) tellin lurid stories 'bout how he 'pleasured' sailors in Annapolis so's he could buy ginger brandy to keep warm, kaput to shootin them pesky neighbor kids in the eye with salt & frivolous lawsuits (the 2nd time WAS an accident), not to mention, NO MORE CRANBERRY SAUCE. Must I go on? But in the intervenin years good things have sprung from the commonwealth; Jeff Burton (go Mayor!), cheap cigarettes, The Orthotonics & most recently, this humble mailorder/charitable trust known an Little Big Chief. Run by a fella name've Brock Kappers outta Staunton, this curatorial enterprise functions as a well honed online enclave what offers up obscure audio treasures via all corners've the globe + a most excellent rescue mission, I mean, reissue label. Who else would've taken the plunge to reboot the mud-flap of Mad Nanna's debut 7", abracadabra from cdr to vinyl the asbestos laced crud of XWave 'n Girls, Girls, Girls, to say nothin of huffin more gas into Watery Love's 'Two Thrills' go-cart? I know there's a song on there about a condom, but let's get real. Resusitatin life back into any've these misfits ain't the deed of a sound mind. Then also take into consideration Mr K's illuminated assortment of various other oddballs for purchase & whaddya know but we've got a regular modern day Charles Wilson Peale on our hands! I knowed a fella years back when I's was stationed up to Langley by the name've Kappers. Grimm Kappers he called himself. A code breaker. Claimed to eat toad any chance he got. And since his complexion was practically reptilian, I took him at his word. Anyhow, he was a big Bomis Predin fan, could sing along to all the songs by the Tom & Marty Band too. So's if he's any relation to this Brock one, them Thanksgivin's must have been a hoot!
Check out Little Big Chief's site here;
With Spacin & Purling Hiss grabbin all's the headlines in Hipster Haven, it's easy to forget they's was both spawned out've a more formidable behemoth, Birds Of Maya. And as good as them two might be, they's can't neither come close to replicatin the ferocity of the one. You's can take all the dumbass carriage rides around Independence Hall you want, eat every motherfuckin fishcake 'n hotdog in the city, even piss on the Rocky statue is that's you's kink, but the only reason to go or stay in Philadephia is in the hopes of catchin a Birds Of Maya show, LIVE, in they's skins. The only comparison I's can really link'em to is Gaseneta. But they ain't really Punk-or maybe they are- shit, they just bash it out & howl! So it's hardly a surprise that this 2nd release is entitled 'Ready To Howl'. Like when is they ain't? Now I know that the vinyl version come out last yr & my gullet's had this gnawin sensation ever since that I never got it the props it so richly deserved. But then earlier this year some tea sippers rubbed a couple've farthings together & reissued it on the provincial cd format so's it could be a staple in council houses all over Olde Blighty. Which is how me 'n Birds Of Maya is gettin a second stab. The thing I've loved about this collection is the way it aptly envisions & narrates a weekend in Kensington. If you's know that section of the city, well then, you know pain. People what's moved up there like to say is "it's house to house". Hey, so was Stalingrad. Anyhow, these Birds boys have gone 'n done created they's own 'Crime & Punishment' with this tuneage. A real trio of Stone Age, audio Dostoyevsky's they be! So dig; our hero get's off work on side 'Friday' & is ready to cut loose. All that pent up aggression from a week's worth of drudgery is palpable in the mix. The way 'Friday' angrily & methodically builds, it's like your there; the case of beer,yep, bag've weed, check. The meth's in the glove box & of course there's them perc's for later. And what better way to get started than at the corner bar? So before you can say 'nem's Flyers!', it's on. By the time side 'Saturday' rolls around things is in full swing 'n you's is locked into one've the most masterful excursions of ugly, sotted, no-fi Psychedelic mauling ever committed to recordin tape. It's so over the top, it's impossible to continue at a human pace. And suddenly bam!-it's done. It can't even finish the side! A ghostly narrator is spirited in to spook us w/a cryptic moral adage. Followed by silence. Silence! Haha, these guys is genius! Then here comes Sunday for 2 sides & every burst capillary, every rottin tooth, every throbbin membrane gets layed out. It's a citified restructurin of a rural rock hangover that every bumpkin from Baltimore to Bakersfield has knowed intimately over time. And as side 4 of 'Sunday' comes to a jazzy close, it don't end, it fades. Which is to say, while this malarkey ain't condoned don't mean it's gonna stop. Tacked onto the cd is a bonus track on which a harmonica is blowed where it sounds like both a police & ambulance siren at once. Not to mention the death bleats of a rabied rat.Who knew 911 could be so gnarly? I wouldn't call it a Rock Opera really, only because the word 'opera' will get you's stabbed in Kenso. What it is is the singularly greatest double lp to bear a Philadelphia return address of all time. Even if nows it has to come from across the drink on a plastic tray. But I suspect either format might be available here;
or try this clown; http://testostertunes.blogspot.com/
Null & Void was one of them severe head scratchers back in the day. Maybe not for me per se, I mean, after all, your lookin at the Ellis Island for the amped 'n addled; them's what pass through this cranium shall be afforded every opportunity. And while we could talk all day about my rapier intellect, let's just say I am pleasantly surprised to be extollin the pleasure of Null & Void's charms in the here 'n now. Back at the dawn of the 80's the band issued a couple's 12" eps; one what's as rare as a double dicked rattler, the other-entitled 'Happiness And Contempt' aka, das debut-bein a bit more findable. Providin you's traipsed around SoCal record stores back then. It also has the distinction of lookin not unlike L Ron Hubbard's 'Space Jazz'. A mere coincidence, as the latter come out some 2 yrs after the former, but nonetheless fetchin to the eye. By the time I'd come to N&V both releases was in the wild. Truth be told, I was sort've intrigued by the visual similarities (the cheap price's didn't hurt neither) & what was even more fuckin amazin is THEY EVEN SOUNDED ALIKE! I shit you not, it was uncanny.Hell, I wouldn't have blinked twice if I found'em both bearin the Applause Records logo. So who knowed, maybe Null & Void was Scientologists. And the next one released-'Montage Morte'-I ain't never seen (or heard) so's it was a ponder what evaporated over time.
So cut to a few weeks back when I found this monster. It took me a minute to shake off the cobwebs, but gettin a full gander at the package-it comes w/an enormous poster what functions not just as art but also the personal/technical index-I's was staggered to find all the material was some 30 yrs old! So's essentially, 'Possibilities' was a 3rd set've recordins what never got the green light. Till now. It's likely this made the rounds as a cassette at some point, whatever, I'm sure I was engaged elsewhere. But man, talk about a massive turnaround. This album is a stone classic of avant, idiosyncratic, post-everything! The songs on that debut would start out w/a slow, broodin pace, then snap! & it was off to the synth wave races. The same modus operandi is evident here, 'cept the tracks never break from the narrative, they's just disinergrate. Either that or they morph into some absurd, ambiguous, tangent (?) that throws you off everything. It's rather like the bizarro prog of Red Noise or Fille Que Mousse than it is Punk. More elaborately, imagine This Heat & Scott Walker recordin 'Deceit', Byron Black/Living Objects coverin 'Eskimo' or Siren-era Chrome reinterpreting 'Call Me MISSter' (sides 2 & 4 respectively). Yeah, it's that GOOD. So why it was buried for all them years is.....a pickle. Thankfully this upstart label, Bunkerpop, has set it straight & honestly, what is the BEST outing from Null & Void is now (finally) available for mass consumption. Get it here;
Willie Lane's always been the one guitar picker what's marched to the beat of his own drum from the get-go. Sure he's done time in MV 'n EE's various revue's, but I reckon that's only helped to make his vision (not to mention playin) more singular. The frenzied enthusiasm for Fahey & Jansch what lit up the latter part of the 90's sowed many a folksy acorn into a forest of strummin oaks, but please, don't make me name them! While they's all drawed from similar wells, at the same time nuances 'n subtleties emerged & since the untimely death of Mr. Jack Rose, a few have jockeyed for to take his place as the Ambassador of Pluck. But not Lane, to which said distinction has made his progress that much more allurin to my ear. On this lp it ain't about modals 'n repetition. It's about exploration. A sense of direction helps, but sometimes gettin lost is the best part of all. Perhaps it's the GOAL. And in that haze is carried ghosts; the piercin, desert howl of Jesus Acedo, the mystical, Wiccan paramounts of Wilburn Burchette, the eroding croak of Gate, the psychedelic whimsy of Daevid Allen, all are present in the ether here. All channeled & diffused by a single player, Willie Lane. The album's called 'Guitar Army Of One' for a reason,Goddammit! So let's be clear, he ain't blowin smoke up your ass, okay? It's FIRE. And now that thing is burnt to a crisp. But no matter, it weren't much more that a place to stick your head anyway. Try & think of this as a collection you need. And of Willie Lane as a friend. A friend, INDEED.
Give it a go here; http://cord-art.blogspot.com/2012/06/blog-post_2003.html
The overall climate on down Australia's thrivin underground scene continues to be hotter'n a goat in a pepper patch, so's tryin to pick one're two kingpin's ain't really fair, though this lp by Constant Mongrel has seen more time on the turntable'n about anything else in the runnin. From the get-go they propel themselves forward w/such aggression I damn near thought it was some lost track off've X's 'Aspirations' lp. From there they just sail. At any given time durin the length of this corker I's was pleasantly harkened into luminous, frenzied eddies, the likes of which have not swirled in my ears since 100 Flowers called it a day. The X_X cover is a nice touch & as flags go, you's can't wave one much higher than theirs, but I could have easily done without it if there'd been another original chompin at the bit to get cut loose. With a title like 'Everything Goes Wrong' as a herald, it's hard not to stack'em up alongside Kitchen's Floor when it comes to the gallows side've aberrance 'n hey now, if that double bill hit the State's, you's might be lookin at the next Cynthia Sagittarius, I shit you not. And if you have any idea what I'm on about, you're surely chuffed to the tits with glee. Sha-doobie. Get it here; http://8081records.bigcartel.com/
Try Easter Bilby for other kick ass Oz related releases at; http://ineedinsulation.blogspot.com/
It sure has been a long year, ain't it? I mean, of course it's the same amount've days as most every other one, but the events whats transpired over the course of 2012 just made it more of a slog than any in recent memory. '77 was close. That one begun w/a lot've fuss when Jomo Kenyatta disbanded the Kenyan parliament (not all heart attacks is accidental, if you catch my drift), seen the rise of the Sex Pistols & Punk at large, then closed w/Ted Bundy escapin through the window of a courthouse. Which then sent me on a wild goose chase most've early 78. But the times now just seem more tryin. Folks ain't as hard scrabble neither. I just done spent a good spell back up to Phila house sittin at Siltbreeze HQ & man has it changed there. Now that neighborhood is like a goddamn baby factory! I reckon there's some highfalutin grade school nearby what's worth a shit-& free-so's all these smug folks' invaded 'n settled in so they's precious seed can get a jump start on lily-liverness. In fact a nest of'em has moved into the bldg occupied by Capt'n Siltbreeze, in fact, right over his proverbial head. And the noise from them.....it would try the patience of a saint. Finally I couldn't take no more. It was a little after 7am on a Tues. & I went to knockin. I got the baldin husband, who opened the door a crack & gave me the evil eye.
"Yes", he asked me sideways. The one thing about all these folks is that ALL of'em think they's shit don't stink.
"Hey bud, how about takin it down a notch up here, huh? I mean, it ain't even 8am & you's got the whole bdlg shakin".
Them eyes've his got all big as he looked me up 'n down. He was definitely not expectin this that mornin.
"And just who are you?" he sniffed indignantly.
I explained to him I was downstairs & while I weren't no long term guest, the noise comin outta his abode was inexcusable at such an early hr.
That got his dander up & he opened the door proper to do some lecturin.
"Look here, we have a 5 & 3 yr old & this can't be helped. How dare you come up here & accuse us of making undue noise! These are little children! Why, they are the embodiment of innocence itself. I should know, they are of my loin. Nothing is denied them.No, the fault lies with you. If you are to remain in this bldg then you are going to have to get used to these children-along w/my wife & I-being about to do whatever we want, when we want, where we want. WE HAVE CHILDREN! YOU DO NOT! Am I making myself clear"?
By now he's done strutted out toe to toe w/me, as though w/this proclamation a line had been drawn in the sand. He'd had his say & now is givin it alls he's got on the macho end, glarin into my eyes, waitin (I reckon) for an apology & then me to turn heel for to walk away. But I's learned long ago to always bring a gun to a knife fight.
"Mister", I said evenly, "you don't know me at all. Ain't got no idea who I am, what I'm capable of, nothin. Let me tell you this; I could come in here & eradicate the lot of you. In your sleep, wide wake, it don't matter. There ain't shit you could do. And not only that, but afterwards I could have the whole thing covered up. No investigation whatsoever. Just some burglary gone wrong.But I am a man of compromise. So here's my counter; you put a muzzle on them 2 & learn to respect the fact that other people live around here or I will have some associates drop by who''ll take'em out, sever off they's legs just below the knee, rip out them little tongues, then relocate'em to Bombay where they'll spend the rest of their days sittin side by side on rusted dollies, raspin at strangers in a street bazaar to buy cobra's & bindi's. This could happen as early as...today. And again, you is powerless to stop it. Know why? Cause I was never here.This conversation never happened. Go ahead, play me. But I assure you-things will get quiet here, either by my way, or yours. Are we good"?
Now at some point right around when I said "sever" alls the color drained outta his face. And by the end of my modest proposal he had the shakes. Not full on exorcism style, but pronounced enough I's thought maybe he might be epileptic.Plus he'd pissed himself & a puddle of urine had collected around his feet & was slowly makin it's way towards mine. So I pointed the ol' finger pistol at him, cocked my thumb, smiled 'n said, "your move, corn cob". Then I ambled down them steps w/a song in my heart, convinced that now we really understood one another.
You could have the brain of a chicken & still know that what followed weren't pretty. Through them rickety floorboards I could hear the cursin 'n cryin, shrieks of panic, the whole gambit.Seemed the least I could do in their moment of harsh realization was give'em some privacy.
So's I ambled over to the cafe 'cross the street to wait it out. Plus it had a nice window what gave me a vantage to keep my eyes peeled. A slick dick like that fella, he might get all badass 'n call the cops. So if he played that card I weren't nowhere to be found. But just then I seen the mousey little wife come runnin out, haulin ass down the street, the soles of them knock off Wellingtons almost smokin from her feverish pitter-pats. She got behind the wheel of a late model Honda Accord, peeled out, come around 'n backed it smack dab up to the front door.Then her & Mr. Clean got to throwin all manner've belongings in, hell bent for leather they was. Once it was full, he came flyin out w/a brat under each arm, tossed'em in the back seat, jumped in the passenger side & off they sped, eyes wide as saucers ('n damp to boot). I got's to tell you's, it was one of the funniest sights I's seen in an age. Shit, it still makes me laugh. And normally I wouldn't take such liberties as to spook folks in the private sector. But them bunch was beyond annoyin. They's reeked of the dreaded ENTITLEMENT. Let me tell y'all something; just because you's dropped a load or two in a baby machine don't make you's The Royal Family. So get a grip. You want entitlement? Sink a submarine w/your fists. Assassinate a drug lord w/a sneeze. Surf the Bering Sea. Then you can go baby-daddy the fuck out of life. Don't believe it? The just stop by the estate sometime, pard, get a gander from the scrapbooks. There is proof in evidence. And my 'mommies' is legion.
But enough about some snivellin shitbags w/strollers. I's is so glad to be back to Florida, it ain't even funny. It's all OLD PEOPLE here. I love it! Nothin but golf, sun, dominoes, cocktails.....hard to beat. An I get throwed some whenever I want, so no complaints there neither. In fact, things is so copasetic I's decided to get a jump on the Best've 12 list.For once I's even made notes! Course they's all in code, but hey, that's life. Anyway, I'll be tossin'em out on here over the next few wks. While I weren't able to have my ear to the ground as in the days of yore, 2012 seen some solid entries. Surely more'n I could ever account for. But as the great Chesterton once wrote "It is the presence of mind that makes me unaware of everything else". Him 'n Sam Esh woulda made a fine pair.
But one thing (or label to be precise) that I's keeps up on is releases bearin the Kye imprint. And this year seen half a dozen or so pearls spilled out before the swine. The Shadow Ring's 'Remains Unchanged' is surely the pinnacle of the lot & it was a fun ride on the wayback machine, but the lp I's keep hittin up again is Dan Melchior's 'Excerpts (& Half Speeds)'. Some might've opined that this collection of oozin, warbled, non-specific brain suet is the last thing they'd expect on Dan's menu. As though he's still some Medway ham 'n egger, destined for all eternity to gnash out Chuck Berry chords to men-of-a-certain-age who don bomber jackets. And cuffed jeans! I don't know who said this 1st-maybe it was me- but diversity will fuck placidity in the ear every time. Diabolically detuned + splendidly deranged, 'Excerpts' is like a 2st Century bookend to Richard Earl's underrated masterpiece 'The Egg Store Ilk', which saw the light of day back in an era unblemished by celiac.So you's see, this kind of singularity don't trip down the pike every day. Dullards 'n tofu snuffers (occasionally the same embodiment) whine that Dan 'puts out' too many records. I for one cannot wrap my noggin around such a vacuous statement. That said, I ain't bothered to count how many he's done this yr. But then I never counted the amount've Sun Ra records what got cranked out annually & I don't remember no one ever givin Sonny shit for bein prolific. But if you's can only buy one, this be it. You might say in the vastness of Melchior's discography, this is his 'Strange Strings'. All's I know that when it's playin, my gin always get's a bit pinker. And who don't like a little more color in they's life? So's three cheers to that!
Check it here; http://www.tediumhouse.com/labels/kye
Blank Realm is arguably the most diverse sounding of all the excellent bands presently calling Brisbane, Australia, home. Following a host of releases including two out-of-print LPs for the Not Not Fun label and a pair of sevens on their hometown imprint Negative Guest List, Go Easy is the one where all the chickens come home to roost. With an uncanny channeling of Missing-Links-styled garage / psychedelia, Pere-Ubu-esque rustbelt avant trippery and the experimental post-punk spasms of The Work, Blank Realm ably goes deep (when called for) as well as plays it tight and inside (ditto). For the discerning sodbuster who actually has cash burning a hole through the leather pouch found at the end of that wallet chain, this is surely one of the primo investments for 2012.
Prices as follows;
Paypal to; email@example.com
Eight years after their partnership began with the debut of Dig Yourself, Times New Viking and Siltbreeze join forces again for the band’s latest outing—six tracks, the result of a recent creative (albeit, modest) outpouring of ideas. What’s interesting to note here is how the trio tempers the primal panic-punk of their salad days and fuses it with the sustained, keen pop skill found within their later catalog. It’s hard to know where Times New Viking goes from here, but for right now, this perfectly distilled elixir of sound shows a band firing on all cylinders. What more can you ask for?
Prices as follows;
Paypal to; firstname.lastname@example.org
If you need something to do to pass some time while you're waiting for your music download to finish up, check out some online games. There are several sites like Mecca Bingo and Crazy Monkey Games, where you can play a quick flash game to entertain yourself while waiting.