Saturday, 11 February 2017

bIG⋆fLAME* ‎– "Rigour 1983-1986" (Drag City/Ron Johnson Records)


I was going to carry on with some more Anarcho-Punk stuff, and listened to Flux Of Pink Indians early fuzzy hardcore stuff.It wasn't long before my mind drifted away thinking of music i actually like.....Ah! Ron Johnson Records; one of those record labels that demanded one bought everything it unleashed, briefly, back  in the mid-eighties. One of those labels that had its own sound and identity,like Factory,4AD,and Rough trade (all before they got gentrified of course).
There was undoubtedly a Captain Beefheart flavour to all of the Ron Johnson Bands, disjointed tunes, in funny time signatures, barbed with a slab of spikey energy; the acceptable side of the C-86 Indie era.
My thought immediately went to bIG fLAME, who's music makes Flux of Pink Indians the musical equivalent of a dose of Mogadon. (Although, Flux did make an LP with one of the most succinct  album titles ever...check "The Fucking Cunts Treat Us like Pricks!" album HERE!)
bIG⋆fLAME*'s tunes are indeed the equivalent of Trout Mask Replica stuck on fast forward,with all three band members playing in different time signatures at 100MPH. A kind of art damaged scratchy funk crossed with the sound of a skip full of boxes and tins being emptied at a land-fill site somewhere between your ears.
Never having released a long player amidst their multifarious singles, ep's and mini-albums; there was a need for a compilation collecting them all together in one place.
So here it is,thanks to American label Drag City.Americans aren't that stupid after all?

Tracklist:

1 Sink
2 Sometimes
3 The Illness
4 Man Of Few Syllables
5 Debra
6 Sargasso
7 All The Irish (Must Go To Heaven)
8 ¡Cuba!
9 Where's Our Carol?
10 Why Popstars Can't Dance
11 Chanel Samba
12 Breath Of A Nation
13 Every Conversation
14 New Way (Quick Wash And Brush Up With Liberation Theology)
15 Cat With Cholic
16 Earsore
17 Three On Baffled Island (The Hardrock Movement)
18 Let's Rewrite The American Constitution
19 XPQWRTZ


6 comments:

Judas Vigilante said...

Trout Mask Replica on speed? What could be better than that! Cheers JZ.

pinkpressthreat said...

Good choice - ta

Citizen Dysgeusian said...

Never cease the amazing boss. I always considered bands like this to be of something altogether different from the other 'post-punk' or 'art rock' bands about at the time. I lump this band in with bands like Stump, Bog-Shed, Five Go Down To Sea, Noseflutes, Nightingales, Keatons, Membranes, Half Men half Biscuit, Blurt, Shrubs and many others that myself and most all of us I've talked to over here in the states knew nothing about except through the blogs in the last decade or two. They are all amazing to me. I realize bands since Gang Of Four and The Pop Group among so many more were doing this earlier in a way but this seemed to have an air of unsophisticated about it and an allowance for actual fun to be had. Some type of funk punk but on meth like you said. I've heard it called lo-fi, blah, but I think it is so much more worthy of it's own title. Peel called Bog-shed 'Shambling' I believe once so I usually call these bands of this perceived style I pertain to them to be worthy of the same respectively. I'm sure you can tell me how many ways to sun down how they differ. As I was exposed to them all at once and only in the last ten years. I think I unfairly lumped them together away from other post-punk bands or whatever and imagined them all in their own little scene. It's fascinating to me how many great bands like this get no credit compared to the other straight forward punk groups especially the uk82 or so called groups. I guess it's always that way. Likely makes me treasure them the more for it. I've never met anyone over hear who has ever heard of Bog-shed not even once. That's my go to when someone is being a pretentious twat about Johnny Thunders or some other babble. It seemed that over there in England they never really got taken seriously? Bog-shed and the likes? Or is that just one or two writer's comments I read that I'm now repeating as fact. For fuck sake I bet you showed me half of these in posts gone by already. Sorry if that's the case but hey here I am still excited. big Flame was one of the last I came upon but easily one of the most deserving of praise. Stump I like but they didn't seem they should of got as much attention as I have been led to believe they had gotten. Too silly after awhile even though that was the point. Five Go Down To Sea and Beethoven were really special to me. Their whole origins and demise is simultaneously great and tragic. A story if what I have read was all true is more like a movie script. Dark humor if there ever was such a thing. I have a million questions regarding these bands and sound. Hopefully I'm not ahead of myself too much. I know I get overzealous but feed me knowledge I will pass it on to all whom will listen till my days are up. Sorry about the babbling brook of moving commentary. Hopefully it flows better in reading than it imposes on the eyes at first glance. I have restraint problems sorry. Answer one question and Im happy. Especially about Bog-shed I'm curious... I promise I won't have a melt down. I can take it.

Jonny Zchivago said...

Bogshed were my favourite pop group around 1986. Yes, considered somewhat a comedy turn by chin stroking pop aficionados in the press and beyond.Beware showing a sense of humour or one gets lumped in with the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah band and dismissed as entertainment. Especially if you're from the 'North'; where most of these similar bands came from around 1986.London was just straight forward foppish indie rubbish. Bogshed wrote a large quantity of, yes, shambolic pop melodies that were both innovative and,sorry,entertaining.Not for stockhausen fans, but one did need a certain level of intelligence to 'grt it'. One of the great forgotten acts......then they were all killed by 'e' and acid fucking house!
You won't be surprised to know i will be featuring most of the above groups in the near future.

Tim 'Space Debris' said...

Big Flame always remind me of Fire Engines who I'm sure they were fans of.

Jonny Zchivago said...

Undoubtedly a Postcard influence in there, but with a bit more balls.If we go further back to what influenced the Postcard bands, we get The Subway Sect!? Rock genetics is fun....who influenced The Subway Sect I wouldn't like to guess.