Friday, 31 May 2019

Alice Coltrane ‎– "Lord Of Lords" (Impulse! ‎– AS-9224)


The cover photo makes Alice look like a cult leader,which would be rare as there are very few Female cult leaders that I know of, if any at all?
What is it with blokes? All the arseholes down through history are male? Which makes me look in the mirror and ask myself candidly, "Am I an Arsehole?"
The only answer I can give with out sounding, word of the day..."Glib", can only be "Probably".
We all like to think that given certain situations we wouldn't change into one of these idiots.
If, suddenly, I was transported into the seventies and turned into a 'Rock Star', which was one of thee most terrifying human God scenarios of recent history, then I can't confidently say I wouldn't become a Total Fucking Arsehole, or TFA, like all Rock Stars did,and still would if Rock wasn't dead, and the kids weren't all hypnotised by gaming culture.......another sad cult i'm afraid!
Like most Cult leaders, the Rock star indulged in childlike dictatorial behaviour in the name of Rebellion, quaffed drugs like candy, and sexually abused women and underage boys and girls without a second thought......mainly because they were permanently off their tits on illegal substances and ego overdoses.
If these lovely fellows were investigated for historic abuse crimes ,like they are sort of doing in Hollywood, then i doubt any of them would escape jail. All the Beatles would have been found guilty, and the rest from the top down too. By 'Modern' standards these 'hero's' are criminals.....but where do you stop? Exhuming Caligula to stand trail at the supreme court?......why not?
But, I'm sure Alice Coltrane had nothing to do with all this, except maybe turning a blind eye to the dodgy goings on by  Swami Satchidananda. Guilt by inaction,or ignorance.She did have the same hirstyle as Sai baba I suppose, so we can't rule anything out. Lets face it they were all at 'It'......filthy little devils.
This album, by the way, is more of the same excellent swirling ecstatic strings and piano,with plenty of bells and improvised organ that makes you just wanna join a cult to hand over your wife and children and, more importantly, bank account, to the Swami.....well probably not actually......but the human mind is so susceptable to control you can never rule it out. Beware!

Tracklist:

A1 Andromeda's Suffering 9:04
A2 Sri Rama Ohnedaruth 6:12
A3 Excerpts From The Firebird 5:43
B1 Lord Of Lords 11:17
B2 Going Home 10:02


Thursday, 30 May 2019

Alice Coltrane ‎– "Universal Consciousness" (Impulse! ‎– AS-9210) 1971



It's 1971, and Turiyasangitananda,otherwise know as Alice Coltrane, has embraced the 'fro' and has read about how everything is connected by a universal consciousness and she wants to tell us about it.

Thanks Alice, but keep it to yourself will ya?
However,if whatever mumbo-jumbo inspires such swirling,tinkling delights as the music on this album,then bring it on.It almost makes one wanna write ones own made up belief system dunnit?
This is great, unique music that, to my knowledge has never been copied.Which is a rare thing on this plagarised planet. Sadly, that is also evidence for a lack of universal consciousness,or is it?
Everyone seems to like the same thing,or things,and stick to like-minded persons in flocks so maybe we are all connected after all?
The very thought that my consciousness is connected to fellow sentient beings like Donald Trump or Tommy Robinson makes me wanna eat this record and wash it down with Nigel Farages Piss.
If you don't know who these people are then you are truly blessed,if you do know these creeps then I'll pray to Paedophile Swami Sai Baba,another owner of a very stlish Afro, for your salvation,or salivation.
In fact there is a stunning resemblance between Alice 'Turiyasangitananda' Coltrane and creepy old Sai....observe....

Alice
Sai













Tracklist:

A1 Universal Consciousness 5:05
A2 Battle At Armageddon 7:22
A3 Oh Allah 4:54
B1 Hare Krishna 8:16
B2 Sita Ram 4:48
B3 The Ankh Of Amen-Ra 6:12


Alice Coltrane ‎– "Huntington Ashram Monastery" (Impulse! ‎– AS-9185)


There's a Buddhist temple near my abode on the plateau du Larzac in southern France.I've even worked there,and of course, they didn't fucking pay me! Now, the cops are investigating the rampant sexual abuse doled out by the head budda-boy lard bucket,who is now in hiding back in Thailand; and no, he didn't fuck me either thank you very much!...except for fucking me over financially,correction, his joyless minions fucked me over financially. The fat cunt used to shag as many young dysfunctional girls as possible,insisting that to do so would enhance their karma levels. These perks of the job were 'generously'shared around various monks and his goons for years,even when everyone outside knew what was going on.Seriously Baaaaaad Karma maaaaaan.
So I assume this kinda shit happened in  most of these cult temples, especially in the sixties.The decade of 'Free Love', which meant in reality that ugly blokes could get laid in the name of freedom.
Dunno where, or what this Huntingdon Ashram Monastery is, but I hope Alice kept her rape alarm handy in between Harp sessions. I just have to hear the word 'monk' and instantly think, Perv, or potential rapist;lurking in their saffron robes in a state of permanent semi-arousal, waiting to insert some instant karma into any unsuspecting passing fuck-up-ess.
As distastful as most of these religions are......yes, Buddism is a religion because they worship large statues of Buddha and make prayers.Its basically the worlds biggest cult,and so attracts rich dysfunctional idiots looking for the meaning of life....I certainly think they found it.......it's shit!
I'll start again.....As distastful as most of these religions are, they are capable of producing some of the best devotional ,ecstatic, and basically, Nutty, musics ever made.Alice Coltranes series of early seventies albums are among some of the most original, and indeed, the best.
I chose this early album to start off with because it has Rashied Ali maning the skins,tying it in with previous Coltrane, J,and Frank Lowe albums for continuity's sake.
What I like about these Jazz albums is that they were recorded, invariably, in one day, mostly in one take.This one, for example, was recorded on the 14th of may 1969 in New York city.......not in a Monastery.

Tracklist:

A1 Huntington Ashram Monastery 5:30
A2 Turiya 4:16
A3 Paramahansa Lake 4:29
B1 Via Sivanandagar 6:03
B2 IHS 8:44
B3 Jaya Jaya Rama 6:25


Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Rashied Ali Quintet ‎– "Rashied Ali Quintet" (Survival Records ‎– SR-102) 1973


All bands dread that moment when the drummer says, "I've been writing some songs"!!!!??? Then you reluctantly volunteer some fake encouragment,and they play their terrible creations,expecting the next album to be theirs.
Upon rejection it ineviably leads to the drummer throwing his toys out of the pram and quitting, only to return two weeks later,humbly returning to the drum stool where he should stay.
Yes, drummers are,mostly, really good at drumming,so stick to that, and leave the creative stuff to people who know better.
Rashied Ali was a great drummer who realised that to have a solo album as a drummer, you have to surround yourself with proper musicians, which he did here, and for the rest of his releases on his own label throughout the 1970's.This is no Cozy Powell's "Dance With The Devil" however,it be far more 'sophisticated'...its Free Jazz innit?
A young James 'Blood' Ulmer is expertly utilised here, and contributes some improvised guitar, and a composition called 'Captain Black';about the traitorous spectrum agent gone bad in Captain Scarlet,who joined forces with the Mysterons.......what?....It could becouldn't it!?

Tracklist:

A Address 16:55
B Theme For Captain Black 18:13


Tuesday, 28 May 2019

John Coltrane & Alice Coltrane ‎– "Cosmic Music" (Coltrane Recording Corporation ‎– AU 4950) 1968


Recorded only months before John's death,and released on Coltranes own label, this is the first offering of Alice Coltrane as an artist in her own right,although maybe it took the death of her hubby to achieve solo status.Someone had to carry on the Coltrane legacy, she did bare the name after all?
Her exotic swirling piano work is cruelly low in the mix,although she has an equal score in the writing credits at least. A milestone in the development of spiritual Jazz,and a tombstone for Coltrane J's forays into free improvisation.
Rashied Ali drums on this as well by the way.

Tracklist:

A1 Manifestation
Composed By – John Coltrane
A2 Lord Help Me To Be
Composed By – Alice Coltrane
B1 Rev. King
Composed By – John Coltrane
B2 The Sun
Composed By – Alice Coltrane


Monday, 27 May 2019

John Coltrane ‎– "Infinity" (Impulse! ‎– AS-92250 1972


Another post-mortem examination of the out-takes of John Coltrane is this exhumation of a few sessions from 1965 and '66,later enhanced by the cosmic widow herself, wife, Alice.
It's really an Alice Coltrane record,filled with hindu inspired lush string sections,abstract organ work and Harp glissando's, plus samples of John's tenor sax laid over the top.
If you're an Alice fan, this is her great lost work,if you're a John fan it's a cynical cash-in. As a fan of both, this is like playing two albums by either artist together at the same time,which is something I always like to do from time to time......sometimes it works,and it works here, very well.Should really be credited as a John and Alice Coltrane record,but no-one knew who she was, so,its a John Solo effort for commercial purposes.
All the usual suspects are guesting on the personnel list, like Rashied Ali,Elvin Jones, Pharoah Sanders, Charlie haden, McCoy Tynor;they all dug in to lend a hand,for what in all intents and purposes is a tribute album to one of musics most influential artists......by his widow and old chums.Ahhhh!

Tracklist:

A1 Peace On Earth 9:03
A2 Living Space 10:40
B1 Joy 8:01
B2 Leo 10:08


John Coltrane ‎– "Interstellar Space" (ABC Impulse! ‎– ASD-9277) 1974


Rashied Ali didn't play on 'Om',but he did play on this Coltrane album from....wot?....1974??? Wait a minute, hadn't the Trane pulled into his last station some seven years earlier,I hear you protest!?
Indeed he had, but this session with Rashied Ali was taped back in '67,and dug up to try and squeeze some more cash from the wide open pockets of your average jazz fan. This is still happening as Coltrane released a new album a year or so ago,competing with Jimi Hendrix for the bi-annual  post-mortem  scraping the bottom of the barrel award.
Its not as wild as Rashied Ali's duet with Frank Lowe however,and not as good, but it does have some nice bells on it.....i'm always a sucker for the odd bell or two amidst the chaos.

Tracklist:

1 Mars 10:42
2 Leo 10:55
3 Venus 8:27
4 Jupiter Variation 6:45
5 Jupiter 5:22
6 Saturn 11:36


Sunday, 26 May 2019

John Coltrane ‎– "Om" (Impulse! ‎– AS-9140) 1967


Here we go, yeah it's the 'Trane',and what has been labelled his worst album. A scathing attack by the same jazzbo journalists who thought Miles Davis's "On The Corner" was his worst album. Of course it is now accepted that "On The Corner" is one of the greatest albums ever made,but "OM" still wears its label of worst like a millstone. Now I can reveal that "OM" is Trane's bestest work wot he done!
It also happens to be the first Coltrane work that I was exposed to; therfore all previous works were judged by this standard.Expecting another bowel flushing  deluge of ecstatic horn blowing, "A Love Supreme" sounded like a Yes album, nice tunes but too safe for these times that we live in.
"Om" is a ferocious beast, with some groovy Hindu chanting from the Gita:
"I am, and the offering made to the ghosts of the fathers, herbs of healing and food, the mantram, the clarified butter. I the oblation, and I the flame into which it is offered. I am the sire of the world, and this world's mother and grandsire. I am he who awards to each the fruit of his action. I make all things clean. I am Om!"

Dig that cover of a medallion nestling into a hairy chest, that wouldn't have been out of place on Oddbod in "Carry On Screaming".Is that supposed to signify some kind of 'Black Power' or shit?
Allegedly, John and chums were off their tits on LSD-25 during this recording,but I think its too coherent for that.It makes too much sense to me,and I ain't never done Acid in my life.....there were plenty of other fools who did it for me, so why risk doing a Syd Barratt?We all know that LSD eventually turns you into Hawkwind,and who wants to do that to themselves? Jefferson Airplane getting turned into Starship,is a better example of what drugs can do to your creativity.It turns one from "White Rabbit" to "We Built This City On Rock and Roll".If you need it for inspiration then maybe you shouldn't do the arts at all? Lets face it, you do drugs to get off yer face,simple as that.Not to find a new direction in art....that's done by thinking stuff up.Y'know perspiration not inspiration.
Despite sounding like they can hardly be bothered to speak in the spoken word intro and outro,Coltrane and band are definitly inspired by the natural forces of freedom here.
I love everything about this posthumously released cash-in album, and it is Coltrane's best or,more accurately, his beast.

NB, oh yeah, this was supposed to link to that Frank Lowe and Rashied Ali album,but Rashied doesn't drum on this,its Elvin Jones.....on LSD apparently?

Tracklist:

A Om, Part 1 15:02
B Om, Part 2 13:58


Saturday, 25 May 2019

Rashied Ali & Frank Lowe ‎– "Duo Exchange" (Survival Records SR 101) 1973


Frank Lowe must have wet himself when he bagged Coltranes drummer Rashied Ali to spare half an hour of his time to record these two one take improvisations and kick start Franks career.
He certainly dosen't sound overawed,as he spews out a barrage of sounds that bring to mind a napalm attack on a flock of Ducks flying south of hell for the winter,featuring the sound of Daffy Duck being throttled,given CPR,then choked again......several times.
The smell of burning feathers in the morning aside. This is a recording of both men in hot form.Charlie might not surf, but Frank and Rashied certainly can create a wave of ruthless noise plucked from out of the flames.
As I've now exhausted my dogged reservoir of Apocalypse Now references,and duck synonyms,I strongly recommend that you download this beast,and show off to your swell Artist Friends just how bohemian you really are(n't).

Tracklist:

Exchange - Part 1 (13:34)
Exchange - Part 2 (15:09)


Friday, 24 May 2019

Frank Lowe ‎– "Black Beings" (ESP Disk ‎– ESP 3013) 1973


If you wanna seem sophisticated or intelligent then get some Free Jazz records, play them in the background when you're on the phone......."Excuse me a second while I turn down the JAZZ i'm really into........now what was it you wanted?"
Leave them on the coffee table when your dinner guests arrive, putting the more famous ones on the top,like "A Love Supreme",and leaving the more obscure ones just poking out, like Frank Lowe.
This will impress on the rare occassions that an actual Jazz bore crosses the threshold of your castle. Anything on Impulse, or BYG Actuel,or ,like this classic, on ESP Disk.
I bet you're already thinking I'm far more sophisticated than you are becuse I've posted some Free Jazz on my blog which is normally concerned with badly produced pop music from the cracked and crustier end of the rock'n'roll blancmange. Well, I like to think I am terminally sophisticated, and frequently indulge in the odd pena colada at my classy but faultlessly bohemion soireés with my artist friends, backed up by plenty of modal Jazz classics filtering through the intellectually stimulating chit-chat about John Paul Satre and or, Kant.....I said KANT you infantile moron!!!
Sophisticated soireés aside,this album is a classic, full of the kind of horn abuse that could severly damage your lounges paintwork.
It also features a violinist called 'The Wizard',so it must be good...yes?
I hope you don't think I'm as pretentious as you think I am, but I do dig this kind of Jazz,and am dreadfully aware of the reputation its fans bring to the party.As with most musics and muscians, the worse thing about them,beyond the silly ego's, are the appalling fans.A boil that needs lancing from most musical bottoms.
They are invariably Male,and need to get laid or something.
I remember witnessing a Sun Ra Arkestra performance in the Fez, New York, and two typical Jazz nerds had annexed the table in front of us,closest to the stage.Clad in matching 'Space is the Place' t-shirts like tweedle dum and tweedle dumber, they hi-fived each other and slapped the table everytime the Arkestra came close to uncovering the thirteenth note.
What these dreadful dweebs wanted everyone to know, is that they knew about Sun Ra first,and that they have more Sun Ra albums than you lot put together. Only Residents fans were worse!
They must have been crushed when Marshall Allen by-passed their table to play a sax solo at my table,mainly to serendade my girlfriend I admit,but needless to say, an Honour and a Privilege, and very funny.....funny ha ha, as well as, funny peculiar.

Tracklist:

A1 In Trane's Name
B1 Brother Joseph
B2 Thulani


Thursday, 23 May 2019

Frank Lowe & Eugene Chadbourne ‎– "Don't Punk Out" (QED Records QED 995) 1979



I guess this is as close as free jazz got to a Punksploitation album?
Chadbourne gets free-ish with jazzy B-team  ESP records legend Frank Lowe on Tenor Sax, for some casual improvisation in a room. It just misses Rashid Ali on the skins to make this palatable.
This is the expanded CD version, that includes stuff from 1979, the first 16 tracks recorded in the summer of hate in 1977.....hence the 'Punk Out' reference?

Frank, himself, was a rather overlooked figure on the east coast Free Jazz scene,which had become a tad marginalised by 1977.Over-shadowed by the ghosts of John Coltrane and Albert Ayler.He was always gonna be in the B-Team.If the dead ones remained alive,he probably would have been a star. Like Hendrix whose legendary status was guaranteed by an early death, just as he was getting really shit.So be it with Coltrane and Ayler.Forever placed on a pedestal of unattainable status among equally talented peers of the future and past.....oh Yeah, Frank Lowe's dead now too,still being left out of the jam sessions in heaven in preference to Coltrane and Ayler!?.....oh sweet blonde and caucasian Jesus, why saxophone and guitar players?...why do we attach so much importance to these egocentric oafs?

Tracklist:

1 Composition For David Murray 1:51
2 If It Should Happen 4:08
3 Fright 4:25
4 At Reel's End 2:35
5 Bobo Did It 2:35
6 Ghosts 4:19
7 The Clam 0:59
8 Fire Down There 1:32
9 Phantom To The Tower, Pt. 1-2 4:24
10 You Were Right In The First Place 2:47
11 45 1st Ave [Take 1] 0:20
12 45 1st Ave [Take 2] 2:33
13 There's No Place Like Home 2:54
14 Doctor Too-Much 2:47
15 Don't Punk Out [Take 1] 1:53
16 Don't Punk Out [Take 2] 1:21
17 Inner Extremities Suite 1 5:07
18 Inner Extremities Suite 2 5:18
19 Inner Extremities Suite 3 3:04
20 Cascades 4:14
21 Manhattan Cry 3:19
22 Open Vision 2:18


Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Eugene Chadbourne ‎– "Boogie With The Hook" (Leo Records ‎– CD LR 242) 1996


If there's one thing that Eugene Chadbourne managed to avoid is music with Hooks, in fact music that boogies too. So one assumes,once again, that this cheeky little monkey is being Ironic?
We got a bunch of duets with masters of the improvisation arts, like that man Derek Bailey again,along with his Dutch drummy mate Hans Bennink, and Eugenes old jazzbo chum John Zorn. Also making a posthumous appearance, is Free Jazz legend Charles Tyler. Posthumous as he died four years before this was released.....he's on track five.
An anti-matter version of 'Duelling Banjos' makes up track 6 with some Dutch Banjo player called Volcmar Verkerk.One Would have liked to have seen this banjo duel replacing the original version in John Boorman's (no relation to Martin I am told....shame) movie classic "Deliverance", along with Burt Reynolds getting the severe bumming from the Hillbilly.I'm sure that version would have won the razzie for worst film,or even worse, the Oscar for best film.
I remember watching that film on the Monday night movie slot with my parents in the mid-seventies,but cannot recall the male rape scene at all! I'm sure there would have been one of those awkward silences which occur when families witness sex acts on TV, but times ten.So i reckon it was censored.The BBC taking care of our hearts and minds again.....thank you Auntie Beeb.
Alas,no,sadly it wasn't Burt who received the brutal buggering, but the fat one who was not unlike Eugene Chadbourne in appearence,minus the glasses.I'm not certain, but I have a misty recollection that the other Hillbilly looked like an unshaven Derek Bailey....again, sans lunettes!?
The Buggering was the Hook.......see wot I did there?

Tracklist:

1 Whisky And Women 8:15
2 In Search Of Carl La Fong 
8:05
3 Raking A Chance On Love 1:47
4 Untitled 5:13
5 In Between Comme C And Come Saw 13:18
6 The Banjo Duet 14:37
7 Red Lightning Part one 17:16

Derek Bailey & Eugene Chadbourne ‎– "Tout For Tea!" (Rectangle ‎– Rec-L) 1995


Derek Bailey and Chadbourne dueting?????
There are some spoken interchanges between the two, and towards the audience.With 'Blue Jeans' attempts at humour falling very flat.
Derek sounds rather witty however,but Eugene sounds as irritating as his guitar style.
I dunno which one wins out in the number of collaborations league,but I wager neither of them has ever managed to achieve an 'Eno Collaboration'?........would love to hear of any great lost Bailey and Eno collaboration out there, one can but dream I guess?

Tracklist:

A1 Nover Go Around 6:02
A2 Concerto 7:10
B1 When He Sings + (Extra Bonus) 9:38
B2 Promo Interview (On Subjects Like: The Rake, Derek And The Standby, Etc.) 4:12


Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Eugene Chadbourne / John Zorn ‎– "School" (Parachute ‎– P004&6) 1978


I do share the same initials as John Zorn, as well as an appreciation of improvisation.I'm even improvising this pointless blurb.
This long album is from the early days of Eugene Chadbournes vast list of collaborations and record releases.This one with old chum, the very clever, and don't he want you to know it,Zorn.J, the king of the downtown Noo yawk jazzy intelligentsia.
This double album of Evan Parker and Bailey-isms features many familiar faces of the free-improv scene in New York, like Davey Williams, LaDonna Smith, and Henry Kaiser.So you know what to expect,or, if you don't, its got lots of scratchy guitars, mangled sax noise,and sounds like a chimps tea party let loose with some instruments.Alas, there is an admirable amount of quiet sections to lessen the irritation factor,so that's a plus point.Don't get me wrong, this is a good album, but one gets the definite impression that you've heard it all before?

Tracklist:

A1 Solitude 7:50
A2 Duet 2:45
A3 The Return Of Romance 6:20
A4 The Shreeve 1:40
A5 The Fling 2:39
B1 Missing Persons 7:45
B2 Welcome West 15:05
C Lacrosse-take 3 23:05
D1 Lacrosse-take 4 19:02
D2 Lacrosse-take 6 6:10


Monday, 20 May 2019

Bongwater ‎– "Breaking No New Ground!" (Shimmy Disc ‎– shimmy 0002) 1987


Ironically with a title that could grace many a modern record sleeve.Post Shockabilly, Kramer did Bongwater, with the rather fantastic Ann Magnuson.Starting with this EP, featuring, no less,avant-garde guitar legends Fred Frith and Davey Williams!
Magnuson, was a downtown scenester and actress,whose profile was raised by her dalliances with the Mudd Club and Club 57.....it says here.She was also in 'desperately Seeking Susan', but best keep quiet about that one eh?
Her and Kramer seemed the perfect match,with Ann's unhinged satirical monologues and Mark Kramers rather unusual backing tracks;which actually manage to be funny and break new ground?
It all went so terribly wrong when legal action between the two cheif protagonists ended in the Bankruptcy of Shimmy Disc.
Curiously around the time your scribe attended the Shimmy Disc 10th anniversary party at the Knitting Factory (1997).I have no-idea who played at it, but they did serve Boddingtons at the bar.
Jay Zee,ie moi ,the  morning after that shimmy disc do,indulging in traditional american cusine.

Tracklist:

1.Ride My See-Saw
2.Barely Coping
3.4 Sticks
4.U.S.O.
5.His New Look
6.Julia


Sunday, 19 May 2019

Shockabilly ‎– "The Dawn Of Shockabilly" (Rough Trade ‎– RT 120T) 1982


Well, I might as well post the 'Dawn Of Shockabilly' EP, so you can contrast and compare this with "Earth vs Shockabilly".
As the rumour is that "Vietnam" by the very same group,is the album the Butthole Surfers never made, maybe you should compare and contrast this with that?.....or,as in my case, maybe not.
This one is good anyway.

Tracklist:
A1 Psychotic Reaction
A2 Heart Full Of Soul
A3 Train Kept A Rollin'
B1 Hard Day's Night
B2 Good Girl Is Gonna Go Bad


Shockabilly ‎– "Earth vs. Shockabilly" (Rough Trade ‎– ROUGH 48) 1983


This got a rave review from Edwin Pouncey/Savage Pencil in Sounds back in '83,so I figured I should track it down.
No sign of it in the racks at Revolver opposite Linekers fruit and veg stall in the market place ,St.Martins Records,or Ainsleys???....I know these names will mean nothing to you unless you come from Leicestershire,but these were our local record and tapes establishments back in the day.I'd given up asking for stuff as the staff would only give a confused and unhelpful response which usually involved a pained expression that shreeked "WOT?".
I did,however, find the Dawn Of Shockabilly EP, which was a stormer!
A few weeks passed and "Earth vs Shockabilly" appeared in the 'E' section at Revolver,and I calmly exchanged my dole/welfare cash for said disc.
Needless to say; it was disappointing when I got it home.As with the opposite sex, the thrill is nearly always in the chase.
Chadbournes silly guitar twiddling tends to get on ones tits somewhat,but alas,It's still superior to most mainstream alt-rock,even if it misses thatcertain 'X-factor'.
"City Of Corruption" stands out, and of their scrambled up cover versions of 'Rock'n'Roll' classix, "19th Nervous Breakdown" is the pick. Four stars out of five,rather than the Five Edwin gave it,and not a patch on the Shockabilly EP from the previous year.
There were more albums apparently,but I've never bothered to hear them.Further proof that most pop acts,or even avant_pop acts, should stick to one album then fuck off back to the obscure gutter that they crawled from,or in this case stick to one EP.

Tracklist:

A1 19th Nervous Breakdown
A2 Are You Experienced
A3 Psychedelic Basement
A4 Big Money Broad
A5 Tennessee Flat Top Box
A6 City Of Corruption
B1 People Are Strange
B2 Day Tripper
B3 Purple Haze
B4 Wrestling Woman
B5 Oh Yoko!


Friday, 17 May 2019

The Chadbournes ‎– "LSDC&W - The Amazing Story Of The Chadbournes" (House Of Chadula) 1987


Tom Cora also played in The Chadbournes between 1979 to 81, alongside John Zorn, Kramer, David Licht and guitar madman Eugene Chadbourne.
When Tom  and John left, the remnants became 'Shockabilly'.
Both line-ups did mangled versions of Rock'n'Roll and Country classics,and quite a few of these tracks were carried forward into Shockabillys repartoire.
The Beatles,however, were the main target for Chadbournes, unique, and ,one has to say, irritating guitar style.
I can't work out whether he's taking the piss or serious, which usually means one is either witnessing a super subtle case of Irony as music,or, its a mixture of the two.
Comedy music is an art in itself. Very few  intentionally 'funny' records actually retain this quality for very long, or, as is most commonplace, at all?
I used to find Frank Zappa funny as a yoof,but it hasn't aged well. Be that as it may,I still find "Whats the uglist part of your body" rather amusing, but that 60's hippy humour leaves me cold.
Not really a fan of Chadbournes Chet Atkins on Blue Sunshine and Whizz technique either, but I can appreciate the Classic Rock deconstructions. That part of the concept is glaringly obvious,I just can't work out if he's a subtle ironicist or not.
The band was improved by Cora and Zorn leaving,taking with them any suggestion of Avant Garde cred,which can only be a good thing.
Of course Kramer has had a glittering career since all this,especially with Bongwater,and not so especially In G.G.Allin's Super Scum.....the less said about that the better.

Tracklist:

1- The Beatles Medley 21:59
1a Day Tripper 3:38
1b I've Just Seen A Face 2:46
1c Birthday 2:28
1d Don't Pass Me By 3:34
1e Octopus Garden 2:30
1f Taxman 3:20
1g Startin' Over 3:33


2 In A Sentimental Mood (The Duke) (Pt. 1) 0:50
3 In A Sentimental Mood (Pt. 2) 6:46
4 Winchester, Va. 3:12
5 Tennessee Flattop Box 3:44
6 Dr. Chadbourne's Ordeal In Nashville 2:01
7 Burma Shave 2:28
8 Dixie Fried 4:47
9 Wine Me Up 1:47

10 Roger Miller Medley 8:00
a This Town 3:57
b Kansas City Star 2:11
c My Uncle Used To Love Me But She Died 1:52

11 House Burning Down 3:05
12 Third Stone From The Sun 3:01
13 Funny How Time Slips Away 5:04
14 Ghosts 2:53
15 7 + 7 = 2:47
16 Burl Ives Medley 1:26
17 Wild Horses 4:58
18 W Va Spec (Zorn Tribute) 6:14
19 Nobody Loves Me But My Mother 3:07
20 No Reason To Quit 3:40

Skeleton Crew ‎– "Learn To Talk" (Recommended Records ‎– rm 02) 1984


Improvisers always end up playing with each other,and effortlessly turn out composed pieces to show that they can do it too, if they wanted.
Luckily for us ,'The Listening Public', Fred frith and Tom Cora decided to make us this Avant-pop classic.The virtuosity,the difficult ever changing time signatures,and mental ward vocals, do not distract from the greatness of this record.Like a cross between XTC and Egg, its the kind of prog-pop that could have hit some charts a few years earlier.

Tracklist:
1 Que Viva/Onwards And Upwards 7:37
2 The Way Things Fall (Back Apart) 2:36
3 Not My Shoes 2:14
4 The Washington Post 1:28
5 We're Still Free 4:16
6 Victoryville 2:43
7 Los Colitos/Life At The Top 4:35
8 Learn To Talk 3:40
9 Factory Song 5:13
10 It's Fine 4:22
11 Zach's Flag 3:10
12 Sick as a Parrot 2:58
13 Automatic Pilot 1:27
14 Hook 2:15
15 Killing Time 2:26

Thursday, 16 May 2019

Hans Reichel & Tom Cora ‎– "Angel Carver ("Live" In Milwaukee And Chicago)" (FMP ‎– FMP CD 15) 1989


Herr Reichel,as with all of these 'experimental' guitar weilders, like a nice live collaboration,and who better to do that with than nutty cellist and multi-instrumentalist Tom Cora, who I'm sad to say is no longer with us. He's up there in improvisers valhalla, carving angels no doubt?
On these two perfomances he sticks mainly to scraping the Cello, while Hans does his usual incomphrehensible guitar tinkling and banging.
Certainly more musical than most of these free improvisations,which I think is essential to distinguish humans with instruments from chimps with instruments.Sometimes chimps with instruments do it better,but as most listeners are largly human,a human element is welcome;as is a little bit of melody amidst the funny noises. 

Tracklist:

1 Rest Up, Premonitions 19:39
2 Miracles, To Boot 18:38
3 New Neighbors 13:01
4 Invitations To Dance 8:59


Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Hans Reichel ‎– "Bonobo" (FMP ‎– FMP 0280) 1976



Bonobo, NOT BONO!....scheech!
Bono, likes to think of himself as a true innovator and poet. I remember when he told Tony Wilson of Factory Records after the suicide of Ian Curtis, that he would 'carry on' the job that Curtis had started!?......what(?) by being the exact opposite of Joy Division?
Another Bono story was the time he wrote a letter to Don Van Vliet to ask if he was interested in working together,to which the good captain replied succinctly, "Dear Bonzo,......No."
I don't need any excuse to slag the despicable Bonzo off, so seeing this Reichel album title was too musch tempatation,and I apologise.
Germany's foremost experimental guitarist is on vigorous form, hammering at his guitar like a cross between a glockenspeil and a country and western dulcimer in a hailstorm.
Its Krautrock, but not as you know it.

Tracklist:

A1 Gier I 2:15
A2 Peter Zweifel 2:38
A3 Lurch 3:23
A4 Tœni 1:30
A5 Moor 5:14
A6 Bonobo II 3:26
B1 Bonobo I 3:56
B2 Mariahilf 2:28
B3 Des Jägers Klage 2:49
B4 Nicht Sand, Sondern Popel Im Getriebe 1:27
B5 Gier II 7:52


Hans Reichel - "Duets With Fred Frith And Kazuhisa Uchihashi" ‎ (FMP ‎– FMP CD 36) 1991


'The Frith Reich', is the best Jeu de Mot I can come up with for this one. However, if this existed in one of the earlier 'Reichs', especially the one after the second one.It would have been firmly labelled as 'Degenerate' and burnt. Whereas, it is usually the actual 'degenerates' who are quick to reject things they don't understand and compartmentlise it as the thing they most despise about themselves.For example, the morons who leave a pub because a perfectly inoffensive Robert Wyatt record comes on the jukebox,who are the same lazy work-shy bastards who blame foreign workers for taking the jobs they don't want to do. Same People, same stupidity.
No, this don't sound like Coldplay,and that is the principle reason for its existence.....to strive for something new,and move forward, or sideways,but never backward.
Yeah, there's a place for Coldplay,ying needs its yang,and nature needs balance.Sadly the natural balance is heavily weighted on the popular music, and popular politics side of the cesspool.
So start Complaining about the sundown of civilisation before its too late.

Tracklist:

1-Stop Complaining (36:27)
 Section I 3:10
 Section II 6:31
 Section III 3:28
 Section IV 3:07
 Section V 4:10
 Section VI 5:10
 Section VII 3:22
 Section VIII 2:32
 Section IX 4:57
2-Sundown 35:01


Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Fred Frith / Henry Kaiser ‎– "With Friends Like These" (Metalanguage ‎– ML 107) 1979


Play this to your friends and you'll soon find out which ones are genuine.The ones who can't at least appreciate the experimental approach on offer should be kicked to the curb anyway, the ones that remain in the room have potential.
I've heard far more room clearing records than this one, but I thought, taking the album title into account, that it was an appropraite angle to take my speil on.
Of course I don't mean you to be as shallow as to choose your friends by musical ordeal, although it may be fun.Its best to do it to strangers in a public place.....'Wyatting' I think it has been called by some broadsheet journalist after witnessing the pub emptying qualities of Robert Wyatt's 'Dondestan' album?!...don't get it myself, as this Wyatt album is rather pleasant and mellow;although I understand that the public would have difficulty in accepting Robert's vocal abilities as listenable. Which is strange, because I frequently put forward the great mans name as my singer of preference!?
I doubt any Pub jukebox would be allowed to play the entirety of any of the tracks on this collaboration.
"That ain't Music", said the ruddy faced moron in the union jack t-shirt.
"Don't call that Guitar playing do ya?" slobbered the guy with the missing two front teeth as he salivated into the dregs of his stella Artois.
"We didn't get our fucking country back to listen to this foreign shit", said the apoplectic gammon with the 'Brexit means Brexit' badge, shaking with barely controllable rage!Which sends him into a Liam Neeson style fit of violent revenge as he storms out of the bar looking for foreigners.
The Pub is now ,thankfully empty, and the remaining three persons can now repopulate the establishment with brain cells.

Tracklist:

AA It Moves ... 2:00
AB The Changing Of Names 5:45
AC It Sings 5:40
AD Believing What We Read 3:00
AE ...But Does It Swing ? 3:30
BF Twisted Memories Give Way To The Angry Present 3:50
BG Black Glass 5:30
BH Third Rail 3:25
BI Three Languages 9:30


Monday, 13 May 2019

Fred Frith ‎– "Guitar Solos" (Caroline Records ‎– C 1508) 1974


With an album cover set in the very English setting of a cricket pitch,and the very English take on the electric guitar, One would expect a very perpendicular angle away from rock'n'roll culture, but unfortunately Virgin/caroline stick very closely to the traditional sexual exploitation angle with the label logo featuring a naked pubescent girl.Rather like the cover of that inexcusable 'Blind Faith' album, and that fucking horrific Scorpions album cover, "Virgin Killer".Real life versions of Spinal Taps "Smell The Glove" album cover.
 All those hideous bastards were at it. Once the historic sexual abuse mob turns its attention away from Hollywood and on to the creepy world of Rock Music,there's gonna be no-one left out of jail to make their awful racket ever again....which is a good thing.
Not that Fred Frith had anything to do with it. Coming from the intelligent section of the musical pie,the music on this Solo LP has as little to do with Rock music, and Frith had to do with under-age sex.....ie Nothing....I hope! Its bad enough that I can't sing the praises of Gary Glitter anymore, never mind Fred Frith or Henry Cow!

Tracklist:

A1 Hello Music 1:31
A2 Glass C/W Steel 5:35
A3 Ghosts 3:12
A4 Out Of Their Heads (On Locoweed) 8:24
B1 Not Forgotten 1:55
B2 Hollow Music 2:44
B3 Heat C/W Moment 1:43
B4 No Birds 12:46


Sunday, 12 May 2019

The Spontaneous Music Ensemble ‎– "Karyōbin" (Island Records ‎– ILPS 9079) 1968



A 'Cool' looking bunch were the Spontaneous Music Ensemble.Bailey had that geek chic look going on,and the rest had that hipster bank manager image that we all envy.
The music sticks rather too closely to that beatnik Jazz vibe daddio for me. Not spontaneous enough, and too connected to Modal Jazz to be considered 'Out There' enough, but for 1968, it was out enough to be considered music for weirdo's. Bailey would ,and already had by '68,venture much further 'out' than most would dare to follow.....all this while maintaining a strict anti-fashion image,ranging from the daper geek to the curmudgeonly charity shop pensioner we came to love in the nineties.

Tracklist:

1 Karyobin Pt. 1 8:04
2 Karyobin Pt. 2 5:37
3 Karyobin Pt. 3 6:24
4 Karyobin Pt. 4 6:23
5 Karyobin Pt. 5 12:41
6 Karyobin Pt. 6 9:52


The Music Improvisation Company ‎– "The Music Improvisation Company" (ECM Records ‎– ECM 1005) 1970


Derek Bailey was also in some groups too!
One of which was The Music Improvisation Company,with frequent collaborator Evan Parker, and a bloke who was in King Crimson for one album, Jamie Muir on percussion.
Inside the brown paper bag cover,lies an album of challenging free improvisation.A much needed alternative to the dull dull dull hard rock that dominated in 1970.
These people existed in bubble of their own making,as if rock music had never been invented, or if it had,chopped into pieces, reassembled and smashed with a hammer. Put your Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple,and Uriah Heep records into a rotating cement mixer, and the resulting racket would sound not unlike this very record.

Tracklist:

A1 Third Stream Boogaloo 2:36
A2 Dragon Path 10:23
A3 Packaged Eel 8:42
B1 Untitled No. I 7:05
B2 Untitled No. II 7:32
B3 Tuck 3:04
B4 Wolfgang Van Gangbang 7:05


Saturday, 11 May 2019

Bailey, Frith, Fitzgerald, Reichel ‎– "Guitar Solos 2" (Caroline Records ‎– C 1518) 1976


From the days of recommended retail prices,cut price loss leaders, and when Richard Branson released weird records (Caroline being a Virgin offshoot), instead of trying to fly billionaires into space.Here's a cheap attempt to fly spotty young men from their bedrooms into a obscure headspace of avant garde improvisation using the seemingly unlimited potential of the humble guitar.
Yes, Derek Bailey was,briefly, on a Virgin Records release, and shares this compilation with a few of his acolytes and his West German equivalent, Hans Reichel;not to be confused with Krautrock guitar hero Achim Reichel of 'A.R.and Machines'.Hans style involves a lot of hammering the strings like a dulcimer, or the thinking man's Eddie Van Halen. Achim, used Echo boxes a lot, like Pink Floyd or Manuel Gottsching of Ash Ra Tempel;not as innovative as his namesake, but rather effective none the less.
No Idea who G.F. Fitzgerald was or is,but he obviously digged Derek Bailey somewhat.
Virgin contractee Fred Frith gets the opening birth,to try and push some rare sales of 'Henry Cow' product;but shows plenty of the invention that got him on Ralph Records, and to play on some Residents records, and later with John Zorn.
Why is this solos number '2', when Solos Number '1' was basically a Fred Frith solo album, I don't know?
I expect, there would have been at least a few hairy yoofs who bought this expecting sidelong Hendrix style solos and got a terrible shock, wanting a refund of their £1.49?.....NO hairy Youth NO!

Tracklist:

A1 –Fred Frith - Water / Struggle / The North 11:05
A2 –Fred Frith - Only Reflect 4:00
A3 –G.F. Fitzgerald - Brixton Winter 1976 9:40
B1 –Hans Reichel - Avantlore 3:05
B2 –Hans Reichel - Vain Yookts 3:00
B3 –Hans Reichel - Donnerkuhle 5:05
B4 –Derek Bailey - Virginal 6:20
B5 –Derek Bailey - Praxis 4:00
B6 –Derek Bailey - The Lost Chord 1:50


Friday, 10 May 2019

Derek Bailey & Henry Kaiser ‎– "Wireforks" (Shanachie ‎– 5011) 1995



Henry Kaiser sounds too clever by half.
What do you expect from someone who learned all the guitar parts from "Trout Mask Replica" off by heart? 
But, at least he recognises true innovation when he sees or hears it, and this is why he has faultlessly championed Derek Bailey over the years,.... the avant-guitarists avant-guitarist.
Here,or hear, they are, in a relentless improv-off, that culminates in Kaiser asking Derek if he wanted to do a 'loud one', to which the  great man replied with a succinct.....'OK'. Always open to anything was our Derek.

Tracklist:

1 Quick Match
2 Flights
3 Red Flash
4 Silver Tails
5 Chrysanthemums
6 Hanabi
7 Flair
8 Flare
9 Ring Starmines
10 Dark Fire
11 Snake In The Grass
12 Battle In The Clouds
13 Safe And Sane


Thursday, 9 May 2019

Henry Kaiser ‎– "Domo Arigato Derek-Sensei!" (Balance Point Acoustics ‎– bpaltd202) 2006


Another Davey Williams/Derek Bailey  connection is that Davey appeared on this DB posthumous tribute album put together by Henry Kaiser, playing with Henry on "Two Of A Kind" from 1979.
Some tracks are interspersed with recollections of working with Derek, or what Bailey meant to these Bailey influenced musicians.
Andrea Centazzo also appears on here,also having worked with Bailey and Davey Williams previously.
Expect all the tracks to be from the free improvisation end of the musical spectrum.All performed LIVE with no overdubs, and minimal editing.

Tracklist:

1 Mahalo E Derek
Soloist, Electric Guitar, Voice – Henry Kaiser 5:35
2 Gamera Tai Reptilicus 2005
Electric Guitar – Henry Kaiser Shakuhachi – Kiku Day 4:07
3 The Tsuchigumi Five-Wheel Technique Vs. The Seagull School 1981
Electric Guitar [Two At Once] – Henry KaiserPercussion – Charles K. Noyes 9:15
4 The Worst Of Times 1992
Soloist, Electric Guitar – Henry Kaiser 6:11
5 Continue On 2006
Bass Guitar, Voice – Henry KaiserTenor Saxophone, Voice – Henry Kuntz 4:09
6 Improvisation 102a 1978
Electric Guitar – Henry Kaiser Trumpet – Toshinori Kondo 1:31
7 Improvisation 102x 1978
Electric Guitar – Henry Kaiser Percussion – Andrea Centazzo 2:57
8 Just Be A SCUBA Diver 2006
Double Bass, Voice – Damon Smith Ukulele, Voice – Henry Kaiser 4:04
9 Book Review 2005
Soloist, Acoustic Guitar, Voice – Henry Kaiser 13:38
10 Two Of A Kind 1979
Electric Guitar – Davey Williams, Henry Kaiser 6:05
11 The Metalanguage Trio 2006
Electric Guitar, Voice – Henry Kaiser Piano, Voice – Greg GoodmanSopranino Saxophone, Voice – Larry Ochs 4:47
12 The Night Of Departure 1996
Soloist, Acoustic Guitar – Henry Kaiser 3:15
13 Tokyo Trio For Aida 1979
Double Bass – Motoharu Yoshizawa Electric Guitar – Henry Kaiser Tenor Saxophone – Mototeru Takagi 6:07
14 Pre-Vou 1996
Alto Saxophone – John Oswald Electric Guitar – Henry Kaiser 1:25
15 Kavichandran Salp'uri 1993
Electric Guitar – Derek Bailey, Henry Kaiser Janggu [Changgo], Voice – Sang-Won Park 5:36


Derek Bailey & Andrea Centazzo ‎– "Drops" (Ictus Records ‎– ICTUS 003) 1977


I was looking for a connection between Derek Baily and Davey Williams,and came up with this. Andrea Centazzo,played with them both.
Del-boy is in fine form, firmly backed up by Centazzo's suitably understated improvised percussion/clattering.

Tracklist:

A1 Drop One
A2 Recapitulation, Reiteration And Rabbits
A3 How Long Has This Been Going On?
A4 Drop Two?
B1 Tutti Cantabile
B2 Drop Three
B3 Drop Four?
B4 Sing, Sing, Sing, Sing, Sing
B5 Jim Never Seems To Send Me Pretty Flowers?