Sunday, January 17, 2010

Re-up: Mystery Guru:

Here's a big treat for fans of Acid Mothers Temple. This is AMT-CD 001, a solo electric guitar improvisation from AMT leader, Makoto Kawabata. Two tracks are presented here, "Mai Sagarisi Negai" & "Amou No Shibuki". Both are excellent explorations in swelling drones, wild harmonics, and feedback frenzy...mind expanding stuff. This is an extremely RARE item...only 100 ever made (!) and likely never to be re-pressed.


Friday, January 15, 2010

Sweet Hearts:

Sweet little ep from the short-lived, but highly influential foursome Tiger Trap. SOUR GRASS clocks in at only a little over the 12 minute mark but it could be some of the brightest 12 minutes of your morning.

Hey Jones, remember this one?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Chances are if you are any kind of fan of jazz at all, then you are familiar with the name McCoy Tyner. Perhaps you are used to seeing his name listed as a sideman to one of the most illustrious quartets in all of jazz history. So you may have not followed his career path closely from the time that he left that sideman gig. Now is the time to correct that situation my friends with his mind blowing live album, ENLIGHTENMENT. If performance is the key word to a great live jazz album, then this one delivers in spades with pulse-shredding bass, gut-busting drumming, soul-shattering saxophone, and some of the most intense piano playing you'll ever hear! A lot has been written about spiritual jazz music and I won't get into all that here right now, but when listening to this record, it's not hard to imagine these four souls reaching a higher plane of cosmic intensity during these extended jams.


Lovin' The Night:

Yep...this is the 1981 full-length debut by Motley Crue; without a doubt one of my favorite albums as a kid, but one that totally confused me, and still confounds me a bit to this day. When I was younger, most of the confusion stemmed from the title. I would ask my friends "Too Fast For Love? What does that mean?" (Hey, what can I say? I had a sheltered upbringing!) then my friends would look at me and say "...oooh...y'know (wink wink)." and clueless, I would reply "Oooooooh...yea, sure...I get it...pretty fast...yep." But the real weirdness came from the really strange sounds really dirty and scummy,'s early Motley Crue, but this retained a great level of hunger, stupidity, and naivety that the band would surely lose upon getting their hard-earned fame. The cowbell alone on the album warrants a whole thesis... just..what? Why is it mixed so loudly on some parts? And the way that Tommy Lee utilizes it is SO FUCKING RANDOM at times that it's just ridiculous! There's even moments of OVERDUBBED COWBELL on here...i repeat: OVERDUBBED COWBELL. That means that one of two things must have happened during the recording of this album.

#1) Tommy Lee *really* wanted to emphasize that cowbell's ring and thought that the song deserved that special something to make it stand out...(yea, i know, we're dangerously close to crossing the line into SNL skit territory here)...but there's a deeper level of insanity when comparing "more cowbell" to "double tracked cowbell"! ~~~Aarrggh!!! How does genius like this go unnoticed in the annals of history for so long?

#2) Having completed the first cowbell track, Tommy was so wasted that he recorded it twice, then decided to go score more dope and hookers and the task of deleting one of those tracks was left to the engineer who was way too busy scoring his own groupies and blow. Thus, the track ("Public Enemy #1" if you must now) remained untouched in all it's out-belled glory.

Okay, this is a killer album of pop hooks, big crazy choruses, sleazy guitar and a total glammed out attitude owing lots to the New York Dolls, The Stooges, T. Rex. I could go into more critical observations regarding the music but I'll just let my 12 year old self let you all know that simply, this "rules."


By the way, tracks 1-9 are the original album.
Tracks 10-13 are the bonus tracks, most of them lackluster- except for the killer Crue version of The Raspberries' "Tonight."

Monday, January 11, 2010


Chicago in the 90's was infamous for sprouting out all kinds of bands with members that looked like your everyday indie man, complete with no name clothing, a mellow attitude, and at least one member with all black clothes and wire rimmed glasses. But once they got on stage and plugged into some sort of noise rock rage,they were capable of destroying. Collossamite fit the bill when their full length ECONOMY OF MOTION was released upon earholes back in 1998. They featured member of Dazzling Killmen but Collossamite goes for a more streamlined approach, using space and sparse tangles of guitar chords, dizzying time signatures, and a general loose and disturbed atmosphere.


Thursday, December 31, 2009

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2009 ::: END IT ALL ~~~!

Probably my most listened to albums of the past year....
in no particular order.

FUNERAL MIST ~ Maranatha
CARETAKER ~ Persistent Repetition of Phrases
GLORIOR BELII ~ Meet Us At The Southern Sign
TROUM ~ Sigqan
AHAB ~ Call of the Wretched Sea
HARVEY MILK ~ Life...the Best Game In Town
JUN TOGAWA ~ Self Select Best and Rare 1979-2008

What about you?

Personal Problems:

A friend of mine wrote to me with a request (that I'll post soon), but his e-mail mentioned this great band called the Dazzling Killmen; who I had been wanting to post here for a long time. If "math rock" was ever considered geeky and frail, then these guys brought the muscle to the game! Manic power on display here from the chunky, taunt rhythms to the mangled overbearing guitar also healps that the whole band plays tighter than a mosquito's asshole. The singer sounds like he's about to lose his mind every time he opens his mouth. You can feel the tension gripping his jaws as he spits forth his venom. Quite possibly one of the most domestically violent musical experiences to ever creep out of the 90's underground noise-rock scene...yea, i hate that term also, but too plastered right now to care much about it.

Take a listen, a personal favorite and just the thing to turn onto in these times of turbulent trouble.


Re-post: Damn Fine Coffee

Hail...I'm not out of commision yet...posting has been sporadic this year...
i know, i know. Will have some more time in the upcoming months so expect a possible barrage!

Re-up by request!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Re-post ~ Trippin' Out:

Good old Anonymous wrote:

Please re-post Are You Shakesperienced, or i'll go crazy and drive to the crack in the earth!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Through The Red Frame:

Every once in a while a record comes along that exists in it's own space of time. It cares not for genre pigeonholes or attention seeking status; it just pops up, does what it does, and slowly creeps into your corner and life and stays.

I've been living with this KOPERNIK album for years and it still has a powerful affect on me. It's a perfectly realized, concise vision of what benefits the careful listener can gain by exposure to true meaningful sound.

There are elements of electronic, chamber music, post rock, ambient, but those elements are more like tiny fragments. It's almost as if the Kopernik duo took some records back to their laboratory and dissected each one into tiny molecular pieces and chose not the pieces themselves, but the DNA from those pieces to structure one hell of a beautiful album. There is a very minimal approach to each number here; simple and subtle. Yet, this stuff is quite complex in how it is harmonically composed. Themes are quietly and purposefully stated, they are never overblown, yet those themes are lush in texture, space, and colour. Sometimes, I imagine these pieces more as work on a frame, rather than the picture itself. A work around the details of the outer edge; an open sided boundary to put the art in context rather than category. One may be able to discover cinematic themes here as well...and here is where the observant listener can pinpoint a big difference between ideas of "soundtrack" and "cinema."

Kopernik is an underrated album full of a slow blooming wonder; and one whose beauty is revealed through multiple listens.

Dark Force:

For people who have a spark of curiosity about the legendary music of Miles Davis, knowing where to begin the search can be a frustrating issue. With a back catalogue as vast as a small continent, figuring out where to start and where to go can be tricky; especially considering the many phases of Miles' long and adventurous career. He spawned many followers and imitators and made many enemies along the way. a larger than life figure who would dominate the jazz scene for decades and whose music still holds power and brilliance even to this day.

AGHARTA is a savage snarling primal beast of an album who has dipped his entire body in some kind of hallucinogenic potion and is dealing out tarot cards while ringing up the devil on a direct line. Seriously, some of this music on AGHARTA is so intense that it is frightening. It's beyond the ideas played out in BITCHES BREW and it's certainly nowhere near the funk of James Brown or Funkadelic. It's like the party in funk music has been overshadowed by a dark strange force that has got your ears in a stranglehold. The music on these nights has ripped open a little hole in the fabric of the serenity and little pockets of hell are seeping out.

The direction in music on this night in Osaka, Japan on February 1st, 1975 is dirty and hungry and just doesn't give a damn what you think! The drums flow like a river of blood and only stop to let the organ make a few stabs into the air, the it's back to the onslaught. When it's time for their solo the guitars creep up like distant radio waves transmitted from an outer space swamp. The bass slides around and stalks you like a panther, and the trumpet seems to scream and pitch out a fierce cry that rallies the troops to continue. When you've finally gotten to the last 20 minutes of Agharta, you find yourself floating restlessly in that undersea world pictured on the back cover. You've somehow survived the night, but you'll never be the same again.

*This is a classic EPIC album! One of my all time favorites! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!*

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A Strange Perversion:

I've been home sick the past few days with a cold and the SLAVES brand of feverish, swooning, dark DOORS worship has been fitting along nicely with my under-the-weatherness. Spiraling guitar lines, tense minimal compositions, and a semi-creepy, semi-sensual feeling.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Job For A Cowboy:

When is the last time you could consider a goth band to be truly "baddass?" Well, if you ran into any of the members of Fields Of The Nephilim you might know what I'm talking about. Taking the melancholy, somber tone of early British gothic rock and merging it with a low-slung Ennio Morricone kind of vibe, Nephilim (as they were later known as) were masters of fusing two perfect worlds together to create their own mysterious landscape. It didn't hurt that they had a killer dusty cowboy image that turned more than a few heads. Let's face it, while most bands of this ilk were more interested in hiding in the shadows, these guys stood in the light and just oozed cool.

DAWNRAZOR (great title!) was their first proper full-length album and it's a scorcher from start to finish. The majority of it is quite upbeat and full of a bristling crackling energy. The guitars chime with a melodic clean tone and show a lot of subtlety in the attack. The bass rumbles along and anchors the songs with cold finesse as the drums (which, at times sound somewhat hampered by an 80's production) build up tasteful tension and release. The vocals are truly great; a rugged, coarse and throaty concoction that fits the direction and sound of this band so well.

***In fact, as I'm listening to this again right now, parallels between Joy Division are almost impossible to disregard. Certainly, both bands were totally different entities, but I can't help but to notice how their visions seem to converge in on each other's shade.

Creaky soundscapes that evoke images of wild western towns in the grip of outlaw vigilantes, forgotten men telling spectre tales under a bone white moon with nothing but a bottle of whiskey and all the time in the world, cow skulls on the road and footprints in the dust.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Telepathic With The Diseased:

A crushing cornerstone of Finnish doom, Unholy's THE SECOND RING OF POWER album showcases a band working on an almost telepathic level to bring out a murky mystical musical vision that is both crushing and haunting. The sound is dark, ominous, and quite versatile for this particular style. The key elements are all in place...plodding rythyms, heavy guitars, and (for the most part) slooooow tempos. But Unholy's knack for creative songwriting prevails and they continually pop in little touches that keep the album in a consistent flow of (downward?) motion. Monotone, droning female vocals, wispy keyboard accents, mid-paced sections, a violin here and there, and even moments that border on psyche freak out(!) all add up to not just a great set of songs, but a thoroughly enjoyable listen.

Atmosphere seems to be a key element in setting apart a good doom record from a great one; and Unholy have captured an obscure, cultic feel that serves the purpose well. There is a beauty amongst the desolation set by the pounding pace and one could even imagine nightblossiming flowers blooming amidst the sonic carnage on display here.

A perfect album for the upcoming autumn chill.

Monday, September 7, 2009


The hyper kinetic atomic pop punk rock of Judy And Mary has been long heralded on this site. Their songs swing into life fusing all the best elements of bubblegum pop, twisted heavy punked-out guitars, and plenty of off-kilter melody. Their beginnings were rather humble, but as they hit their stride they ushered in a new era of Japanese pop music from the late 80's on into the 90's. Although now broken up, they left behind a legacy of influential albums and some amazingly catchy music that didn't just cross boundaries, it fused them seamlessly into a patchwork audio net of bright colourful musical expression.

As testament to the band's power, there is a newly released JUDY AND MARY 15TH ANNIVERSARY TRIBUTE ALBUM in which fifteen Japanese artists and bands pay their respect to the gods (and goddess) of JAM! Truthfully, I was not familiar with most of the artists on this compilation but have been pleasantly surprised to get this and enjoy the interpretations of these great songs. Some stick closer to the original, others add their own unique elements...including a rather noisy, disjointed version of "ミュージック ファイター" (Music Fighter) by an artist known simply as Midori; whose cut comes across like a polite version of early Boredoms. Mihimaru GT throw in a trip hop rendition of "Over Drive" that includes this super goofy hip hop breakdown complete with horrible scratching and other words...awesome! Puffy is no doubt the biggest name on here and they turn in a surprisingly grungy and loose version of "Motto."

Did you read that? Yes, Puffy covering Judy And Mary!
Somewhere...a J-Pop fan just wet themselves.

Come Back Jacko, All Is Forgiven:

There have been plenty of WTF moments for the loyal WFY followers of this site; and here's another one of those rare items to grace the pile. There's plenty to get excited about from the cover image alone...the goofy name (E-COUSINS?), the bling-bling style of lettering, and, oh yea, two Filipino Elvis impersonators! If that doesn' t excite you enough already, then I only need to point you to the track listing and let you know that there is a song on here called......

(wait for it)

Which contains a soul-stirring response as to what the Pelvis himself would do if he were here to combat liberty-scoffing terrorists! Well, I hate to give it away, but both Renelvis and Buddy Castillo seem to think that he would..."sing forever to win the war on terrorism!" Brilliant E-COUSINS, aren't they? Not only that, but they also decided to incorporate a rapping intro on the second track "Elvis Still Number One" which segways (incredibly) into a jumble of hit songs dropped into the lyrics. "Elvis Is Alive" is another great slow jam in which someone forgot to turn down the attempted Beatle-esque backup singers in the mix. it doesn't seem to help much as someone whispers mysteriously "Elvissss.....isss...aliiiiivvve...!"

Well, if you haven't already hit the download link by now, then I question why you would even lurk on this site.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Sympathy For The Big Legends:

Japan's kings of boozy biker blues sludge rock GEDO are presented here on a double live volume set from 1974 called KYONETSU NO MACHIDA POLICE. GEDO was well known as being a strong band that played the hell out of festivals all over Japan back in the 60's and 70's. While most bands of this era were concerned about enlightening the soul amidst growing political and social change, this particular group seemed more interested in the non-stop party. This is a gang who seemed to disregard most of the typical 60's hippy-drippy mystical stuff for a more meat & potatoes (or should I say "fish and rice") approach to rock and roll. It's all about losing your mind and having a good time with these guys.

The first disc starts off rather inexplicably with a spoken intro that lasts for over 8 minutes. Within this opening monologue there are jokes, band introductions, and a few bits that have been censored. Once the music finally begins, it's with a melancholy folky tune. The balladry continues for 5 songs. Then after a short interlude (which one assumes the band are plugging in and turning up) they launch into a primitive groove that features all the good elements of Grand Funk Railroad, Sabbath, and The Rolling Stones. Although there are some tendencies to lay on the jams here, GEDO rarely crosses the line into psychedelic material (although some cuts on disc two see the band flying their freak flag a little bit); choosing rather to stick close to the basic rock and roll template...keeping it loud, proud. Good times all around, then!


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Artsy Astronauts:

Trip Shakespeare, a long defunct Minneapolis-based American rock band was granted a permanent place in the early bunkers of my musical memory due to hearing their strange "Tool Master of Brainard" song repeatedly on the college radio station that I tuned into late at night. What a great song, full of glammed up guitars, a pounding rhythm section, and that unique Trip Shakespeare vocal approach that fused baroque harmonies with a decidedly goofy slant. I already posted that album back over here (oops-link is dead now. I'll repost if there is a request), so now it's time to get into their 1990 platter Across The Universe. This album carries the same trademark sounds that I have loved from this group, but this time the song craft has been sharpened a bit; revealing a bit more layered approach both in production and composition. The jangly songs are played harder, the sweet songs are sweeter, and the goofy element certainly comes into play on tracks like "The Nail" and "The Slacks" (whose lyric concept is so ridiculous that it boggles my mind that it was even recorded in a semi-serious manner). Personally, I find the more tuneful songs here to be most potent. Both "Gone, Gone, Gone" and "Late" are pristine examples of T.S.'s literary take on lyric writing and compelling and somewhat mysterious storytelling that grab the imagination while the sheer hook of the tune just drives the song deeper into the brain.

As I wrote in the previous post of this Trip Shakespeare, their music seemed to have it's own singular vision which I have never heard duplicated. Sure, the basic template is a big pop sound... T- Rex, XTC, Big Star, Posies are names that may come to mind; maybe even a little bit of Cheap trick in there. But in place of cool rockers playing this stuff, imagine the local college Poetry Club or Paisley Appreciation Society jamming it out. Yeah...corny, for sure; but a lot of fun.

Manic Spanic:

With a barrage of fast picking razor sharp melodic guitar lines, the father and son team of the Spanic Boys (Tom and Ian, respectively) seemed to have made a dent in some alternative music circles in the late 80's. I recall reading glowing reviews as a youngster in various magazines. Listening to these 12 tracks, the boy's reverential mastery of old Rockabilly is evident; as is their talent for double-lead vocal harmonies, and a clear concise approach to writing hook-laden songs!
I listened to this quite a bit this Summer and tracks like the rollicking "Too Bad, So Sad" and the minimal gallop of "Lonely Man" just seemed to make my drives pleasant as hell.