Monday, January 28, 2008

Bitter Blood Street Theatre -vol.1,LP,1977,USA

Freaky psych weird lp released by this performance group led by Thomas H. Owen Knight of Blacklight Braille fame. Songs might at first hearing sound like typical 70s rock....but...check closer:typical rock with a guy playng saw??????(sounds like theremin).Also the spoken word parts are almost scary!Some improvised jazzy elements can be found too.Anyone who can provide vol.2 allong with the 80s Blacklight Braille LPS,would be much appreciated.Read a Thomas H. Owen Knight interview here.
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Carsickness-Shooting above the garbage,LP,1981,USA

This intriguing Pittsburgh band's lineup includes two keyboardists (one doubling on guitar, the other on violin) and a saxophone player, in addition to a singer/guitarist, bassist and drummer. The ability to arrange their music in a number of directions makes Carsickness a complex force; only Joe Sopa's dramatic vocals maintain any stylistic consistency from track to track. Without being identifiably derivative, Carsickness draws bits from modern jazz, new romanticism, rock-funk and other sources, using flexible rhythmic intensities and thoughtful lyrics to drive the songs. Troublesome, yet impressive and invigorating.[Ira Robbins]
FANTASTIC US electronic goes hardcore goes punk goes artsy kinda stuff.Released in the TMI label in 1981. Reminding Screamers,Mars,some DNA stuff. Get their extensive biography at their homepage.
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Chronicle-Like a Message From the Stars,LP,1977,Japan

Chronicle was a band that featured ex-Far Out bassist Kei Ishikawa. When Far Out broke up, that group's guitarist/vocalist Fumio Miyashita formed Far East Family Band (with Hirohito Fukushima, Akira Ito, Kitaro, Akira Fukakusa, and Shizuo Takasaki), while Kei Ishikawa moved to California with keyboardist Kenji Mishiro, guitarist Nobuo Hotchi, and drummer Osamu Takeda (apparently another ex-Far Out member, but it was Manami Arai who played on their one and only album from 1973) and formed Chronicle. All credited to vocal duties. Musically,it is Pink Floyd/Far Out influnced prog/space rock,dominated by mellow keyboards,excellent voice,virtuoso guitarwork and dreamy space soundscapes.Sometimes it's much mainstream oriented but yet very beautifull..Reminds me some Finch work and also some Cyborg (AU) recordings.
as requested,get it here

Jim Collins-Music Performed by The High Mass,LP,2000(?),USA

Although Eric promised to post this,i had it already ripped it with my copy of Terry LP.So Eric was faster with Terry,i think he wouldn't mind if i post this instead.Excellent dark psych folk LP Tery related.Soon coming Damien Youth recordings that seems to be interconnected also.

The Vampires of Dartmoore -Dracula’s Music Cabinet,LP,1969,Germany

Great strange psyched out scary(huh?!) wanna be LP.German jazz/library musicians Horst Ackermann & Heribert Thusek’s incredible, dark foray into the world of eerie samples & spine-chilling funk. Electronic effects,screams,moans for your kraut /psych Halloween party!
Check out also STAFF CARPENBORG & THE ELECTRIC CORONA and Vampires' Sound Inc. ,both posted here a while back.

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Nuclear Regulatory Commission-Reactor,LP,1980,USA

Nice Tenessee New Wavish band with typical for the period sounding.Reminds me much of Devo's weirdo jocko homo stretched out pop,with much use of synth but also a less violent version of the Nuns and in some parts Invisible Zoo's synth popish sounds.If only there was not too much typical AORish guitar the rest is woderfull....You can even find some freaked out spacey synth hints in some songs.Overall,an essential listening.

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Somnambulist- Withered Land ,tape,1983,Belgium

Somnambulist along with M.Bryo are the product of the same person, one Mark Burghgraeve. A Belgian artist active in a scene that included Klinik and Absolute Body Control.Burghgraeve's vocals standing solemnly against the most minimal of synth pulses, a study in repression and the beauty that can arise from such situations. Raw distorted guitars, cheap echo-voice rendering, and minimal-synth at its best !
Check out also the Somnambulist/M.Bryo split limited 7" e.p released recently by Minimal Wave .
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Steven Grandell - Animal Angst,LP,1984,USA

Here's another minimal synth gem.Released privately in 1984 by Steven Grandell,a gay (now transgendered as far as i know) performance artist this LP blends the early 80s experimental side of synth pop.Sometimes reminding some K.Leimer recordings,or possibly that's how Polyphonic Size would play if they were Americans.Hints of Vice Versa,Voice Farm(circa 1st LP period),early Tuxedomoon,German Sepherds (not the much experimental pieces though),John Bender,but also some taste of the Teutonic German school (Vono,Alu,etc)
Monotonous angst rhythms with use of synths of course but also strange instruments such as xylophone,violin,etc.Overall ,an exciting LP!

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The Happy Dragon Band-st,LP,1978,USA

Having release a little noticed 1974 album for Capitol under the guise of Phantom's Divine Comedy,four years later drummer John Bdanjeck, singer/guitarist Tom Carson, bassist Dennis Craner, keyboardist Mike DeMartino and guitarist Gary Meisner reappeared as The Happy Dragon Band. Released by the small Michigan-based Fiddlers label, anyone expecting to hear another set of faux Doors-inspired psych was bound to be surprised by 1978's "The Happy Dragon Band". Whereas the earlier Phantom LP featured all-original material, here all nine tracks were penned by a Tommy Court. Whoever he was, Court was also credited with production, engineering and direction. Musically the set was a major shocker. Dropping their earlier pseudo-Doors stance, material such as "3-D Free", "In Flight" and the instrumental "Bowling Pin Intro" found the band plunging headlong into outright experimentation. Featuring extended tracks filled with synthesizers, odd sound effects and dazed vocals, the results didn't make for a particularly commercial outting. That said, the album sports a weird, hypnotizing appeal that's worth a couple of spins. Dark, heavy and disturbing, part of the aura may be explained by the liner notes - "This album is in momory of: my friend Ritchie & my child Ritchie Joe".
One of my favorite 70s weird psych LPS.Comparisons can be made with Frank Zappa,Dreamies,late Comus,Terry Brooks,and even early Chrome (minus the industrial feeling).Spaced out electronic effects,cosmic fuzzed freak out all through. Copies of the Radioactive reissue cd can possibly still be found here and there but as far as i know it is officially deleted from the label's catalogue.

get this absoute masterpiece here

Shizzo Flamingos-Years Passed by 83-85,tape,1985,Germany

The Shizzo Flamingos founded at the end of 1981 in Berlin from the leftovers of the 'Headbangers' and the' Arts', but settled on 1985 to Bremen. In the nine years of their existence brought it all on two albums, one of them in the cassette format(which is presented here). Musically, they explore psychedelic paths,through dark atmospheres, with jazzish harmonies, not always an easy to the ear . Often compared by press to Kastrierten philosophen or Tuxedo Moon and even early Skeletal Family. The Shizzos called their music 'No pop' and got on their LP reactions such as the following: "A mouse with a chainsaw slashes cat brain bowl away. Acoustic violence attacks on the auditory nerves... difficult to digest guitar orgy [. ..] A German pleasing Independent - production. ". In addition to the two albums there were several contributions to various local Bremen compilations.

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008


This loner acid folk-into psych curio came down the collector pike along with a companion piece by Jim Collins And The High Mass (which I'll include with my next batch of posts), both of 'em sans any pertinent info whatsoever. I've yet to find anyone online or elsewhere that seems to have the real scoop on these releases; the timelessly odd nature of their contents rendering a clear "read" on it's cultural context difficult. it might be new material. It might be newly released archival material. Or it might be that a cache of old copies were found and spread through the collector network (Chris Freeman at Fusetron guesses that these date from the early 90's). An uneven but sometimes hair-raising record, the true depths of this album eluded me at first, as the rather prosaic nature of the singer/songwriter structures that initially hem in these tracks suggest little of the creeping weirdity that leaks (and later spills) into his compositions as the album progresses and the plot thickens. "Clown Clouds" and "What A Day" (the two best and longest cuts here...roughly half the album) find introspective acid folk themes thrumming and cycling before being subsumed under gossamer residues of protoplasmic/ placental psychotropic space gloop on the former and resounding organ drones, fore-grounded rhythmic perambulations and electronic treatments swaddling Terry's escalating gruff vocal histrionics on the latter to supremely memorable ends. It's an insular, brooding and sometimes ponderous sound world that Terry engenders here and it's not always one that's 100% inviting, but the hot shit half will send your head spinning nevertheless.

***************NEW LINK POSTED OCTOBER 2012***************

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A cornerstone fixture of the Bay Area electronica mafia (and member of it's resident supergroup Sagan alongside Jay Lesser and Blevin Blectum), Jon Leidecker's brilliantly prankster-ish sampladelic pastiches under the Wobbly moniker exists at the intersection of ADD-addled electronica culture, dada kitsch collage and ironic media detournment, a cheerfully subversive methodology he's been honing since the early 90's and which has led to collaborations with both People Like Us and Negativland (under the cover of The Weathermen banner). These two early CD EP's respectively highlight both the culture jamming and kitsch surrealism dimensions of his artistic practice. Presented as a faux Clear-Channel-like sales pitch to radio programmers, Playlist is simultaneously a hilariously caustic indictment and a master class in slash and burn dada décollage, while Regards spotlights a aspect of Leidecker's work, playfully proffering Rube Goldberg contraptions of jerry-rigged and rapidly spliced sample-laden cartoon-tronica for your amusement. Both are a must for anyone with a yen for the demented.

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This was the final album by this German band of arch surrealists and, much like their Musik Fur Schuhgeschafte CD that preceded it (and which I posted last week), it's long been subject to dismissive rhetoric from it's creators, to which I say "Bah!". As with their prior missive, Willkur Nach Noten may not be the product of a cohesive group mind, presenting as it does the ideas of Heemann, Flaam and Martin in more piecemeal fashion, but that's no mark against this album, which shares both Musik Fur Schuhgeschafte's thematic schizophrenia and ambitious scope. With it trance inducing krautrock-centric vibe, a track like "Hirse (H.N.A.S.)" sits next to Heemann and Martin's sublime "Lebenserinnerungen Eines Lepidopterologen" double CD as some of the finest music ever created by these gents; one small facet of an album laden with sharp ideas sharply realized. Hectic swarms of effected Nurse With Wound-like female vocal jabber, thick wedges of druggy atmospherics suggestive of Heemann's initial solo forays that were soon to follow, gauzy and lopsided instrumental pseudo-pop, scrambed schlager kitsch...Willkur Nach Noten contains pretty much everything you'd want in a H.N.A.S. album. It's a thing of sick beauty and a high water mark for all involved parties.

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Peruvian purveyors of naive but charming acid psych, my post of El Alamo comes with the following caveat: there's a definite Santana edge to some of the cuts here. If thats sufficient to send you scurrying for cover so be it, though you'd be missing out on an otherwise choice slab of psychedelic exotica. A first glance might suggest the that dominant influence at play here is Crosby, Stills and Nash, given that the first track here ("Candy") is the Doo-doo-doo-doo-doo DOO DOO doo doo doo doo" bit from Suite: Judy Blue Eyes, but thereafter, things take a liquidly acidic turn with the very Traffic Sound-like psychotropic swoon of "Can You See Me". From there on out it's a mixed bag of the beautifully tripped and the slight and disposable, the former fortunately outweighing the latter, particularly on the completely fried title track, a pinnacle of South American psych and reason alone for an immediate download of this gem.

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Released on the mythical Japanese Org label (responsible for issuing the first two releases of Maher Shalal Hash Baz as well as the Tenno-Noise album), this is a sweet slab of blasted and wandering psych de-tunage with a musical thrust that orients this more toward a species of Byron Coley-endorsed American loner psych action (think: Bob Bannister) than toward his contemporaries in the Japanese underground. Beyond that, I really haven't the foggiest idea about Iwata, as web searches turn up near zilch about this cat. Any enlightenment would be entirely welcome.

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NOTE: The last few available copies of this LP can be found Here

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Barons-Home recordings,CD,1979-1980/2002,Australia

The Barons were Michael T's project just as M2 started up. Obviously played by people still learning their instruments and with the influence of the Residents hovering benignly, there are some great, funny moments, most obviously captured by their version of Paint It Black - later released on the Growing Pains compilation.(description from No Night Sweats ).
Stunning Residential freaked out recordings!

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Scattered Order -Early Recordings,CD,1979-80,Australia

Great early ,some of them unrealised ,others realised in very limited quantities ,recordings from the M Squared archives, by this phenomenal band.Stretched out damaged post punk,dark sometimes,punkish someothers,with much experimental hints, reminding early Tuxedomoon,SPK,MX 80 sound,etc.
for this and all the other Australian posts check No Night Sweats website for more infos.

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Anyone who can provide more tapes from the Aussie underground ripped is more than welcome.

Patrick Gibson-We,Him and just Me,CD(?),198?,Australia

Actually not an official release but some unreleased recordings(as far as i know) by Mr. Systematics himself and some collaborations with Michael Tee(A cloakroom Assembly) and Height Dismay.Music varies from Resident's influenced experimental recordings to minimal synth weirdness and electronic compositions a la Makers of The Dead Travel Fast .

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Patrick Gibson/Prod-Two seperate/Is the truck on fire?,tape,1982,Australia

Absolutely stunning tape released through M Squarred in 1982 , as a part of P. Gebson split releases(check also his split tape with A cloakroom assembly posted here about a year ago).Patrick Gibson reveals his love of synth, organ, repitition and Christian myth. From the loop of guitar / Newcastle scream with overlaid heavy organ chords to twittering bleeps and the three times table - all left field pop is here.Prod's mixture of rhythmic inventiveness and humourous experiments has held up well over the years. Less song based than their single, it still has moments of raucous intensity.(description from No Night Sweats ).
Great minimal synth experimental recordings with strong Resident-ial feeling .Released in cardboard box with inserts(high quality scans included).
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Function Disorder-#1,1984+West,1985,LPs,USA

Absolutely crazed out freaky dark power /harsh electronics industrial band from NYC ,that existed in the early-mid 80s.Their sound is akin to Whitehouse ,who they supported in their US tour. The basement technology of the recordings adds an even harsher sounding.

ExHumans - Anofeli Epiviosi,LP,1984,Greece

The band was formed in 1982, & was plagued throughout its existence by member changes & the need to borrow members from other bands. In 1984, they take part in the "Διατάραξη Κοινής Ησυχίας [ diataraxi koinis isyhias / disruption of public peace - a.k.a. disturbance of common peace ]" compilation, while their only record titled "Ανώφελη Επιβίωση [ anofeli epiviosi / useless survival ]" is released in that same year. The line-up that recorded the LP was: Yorgos "Havoc" Alevras (vox, guitar - currently in Velocity), Yannis Trompetas (bass, also currently in Velocity), Foivos Pergaliotis (drums). The track standing out in the record is "Ποτέ Ξανά [ pote xana / never again ]," although all other tracks are not to be missed.
The band follows the usual punk rhythms, with a musical & lyrical approach characterized by aggressiveness & energy, forever critical towards any & all sociopolitical status quo.
This is considered as one of the best early Greek punk LPs reciorded.As far as i know it was released in a mere 500-700 copies edition and it was very fast sold out. Very hard to find right now even in Greece. The lyrics are pure anarcho-punk while the music is more melody oriented ,well, punk of course, but with many post punkish hints.Reminding early Zounds in parts, Mob ,omega Tribe,etc.
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Formed as a one-man project by K.Sören Bengtsson in an attempt to relive early 1970’s style space/psych/acid-rock. After a few demos, home recording of full album material begins. Half finished he is joined by Juha Nurmenniemi and they complete the recording together.In 1994 the recording of Daybreak begin. First recording as a proper band and regarded as a space-rock classic. Still mostly home recorded and this time even released on Bengtsson's own label SBm. This CD finally gives the band some reputation and gigs in Europe follow. Two members leave during 1994. They are replaced by Marcus Pehrsson from Last Laugh. New songs with a more psychedelic/progressive approach than before are near completed when artist friend Sputnic comes up with the idea and story for a sci-fi concept album and the band approves. They continue to work on both projects until Italian label Black Widow records ask them to record a follow up to Daybreak. This is recorded in three (!) hectic days before they get back to the conceptual idea. Sundqvist rejoins the band and a few weeks later Björn Jacobson is invited too. By December they act as backing band to ex. Hawkwind legend Nik Turner under the guise of HawXtaR.

DARXTAR - DARXTAR Acid Tapes TAB071 Jan 1991 MC withdrawn prior to CD release DARXTAR - DARXTAR Spm/wwr CD0029 Dec 1991 CD 1000 copies made
DARXTAR - DARKER Garageland GRCD005 Apr 1993 CD 700 copies made
DARXTAR - DAYBREAK SBm CDA001 Aug 1994 CD 1000 copies made
DARXTAR - STARLOG 1990-1994 SBm MCC001 Jul 1995 MC 50 copies made
DARXTAR - SJU Black Widow Records BWR012 Jan 1996 LP 500 copies made Black Widow Records BWRCD012-2 Jan 1996 CD 1000 copies made SBm CDA002 May 1996 CD 500 copies made, re-release with redesigned booklet
DARXTAR - HAWXTAR SBm CDR001 July 1997 CD-R Official bootleg with Nik Turner 100 numbered copies made
DARXTAR - TOMBOLA Record Heaven RHCD66 Nov 2001 CD
WE CAME TOO LATE Nasoni Records 044 (vinyl) & CD044 December 2005
One of the best current space rock acts akin to Hawkwind,early Pink Floyd,etc.This will appeal to fans of Ozric Tentacles, early Floyd, Mr.Quimby's Beard, Spacehead, Liquid Sound Company, Mandra Gora Lightshow Society,Acid Mothers Temple and possibly even Monster Magnet. Released privately in 1994 in 1000 copies and long disappeared from the market.
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Tuesday, January 15, 2008


This devastatingly great Japanese avant garde electronic prog mega-rarity sits near the absolute summit of Japanese underground music of the last forty years. Many years back, rare record dealer Greg Pawelko described the sound of this record as being "like a combination of Franco Battiato, Mike Oldfield, Igor Wakhevitch, Urban Sax, Stomu Yamashta and Keith Tippett", a description which comes remarkably close to capturing the elusive flavor of this masterpiece, while failing to note just how close in tone the deployment of electronics here are to Harumi Hosono's work on the seminal Hosono & Yokoo-Cochin Moon album (merely the greatest electronic album ever recorded). This whole album is ensconced in a glistening higher-key acid glaze and pregnant with that air of the mystical sublime that imbues only the most rarified psych/prog/spacerock recordings. A holy grail.

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Get Cochin Moon Here


Top tier privately released avant garde mindblower from this one-time keyboardist for American sympho-proggers Maelstrom accompanied by a crew of other plus sized hirsute cats, all tripping out in expansive fashion on analog electronics, ethnic percussion, ring modulators, audio processors, flutes, recorders and saxes in a way subtly suggestive of Gravity Adjusters Expansion Band, though with a more aggressive air and bent for weirdity, a penchant that caps with "Wolffian Ducts" warped Residential-isms.

***************NEW LINK POSTED OCTOBER 2012***************

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Al Margolis (who is If, Bwana) was one of the cornerstone fixtures of the 80's cassette culture network, running the uber prolific Sound Of Pig imprint. Wah Yu Wan, his first release on vinyl, is a bit of a schizophrenic grab bag of avant garde and post-industrial signifiers, but there's nevertheless plenty here grab your attention. Austere academic sounding electronics screech and shimmer to variable effect at the outset, but quickly enough you're plunged down the title track's rabbit hole of reverbed metal clatter where clarinets chase the tail of harmonium drones, while Op. 4, Ch. 4 (the album highlight) is a dense psychotropic vortex of of low-pitched drones, string skree, sepulchral orchestration and Sally Smmit-like acid warble vocalizations. The rest? It has it's moments, including some very pleasant foghorned doomscapes built from multi-tracked clarinets, but the two above cited cuts (approximately half the album) are the real rib-stickers here.

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