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Preview: Internet Albemuth

Internet Albemuth

Transmitted from a satellite outside the sphere of human consciousness, directly into your skull, we present Internet Albemuth. What was once a weekly internet radio show almost 15 years ago is now an offering of auricular oddities that have been strewn f

Updated: 2016-01-18T05:44:50.253-08:00




(image) Living in the Lower Haight of San Francisco in the back of a record store specializing in experimental music in the early 90's came with its own set of odd occurrences, events and individuals. We had quite a few neighborhood regulars who would come in, share a cup of coffee and listen to a few minutes of music to escape the city outside and share their art, ideas, grievances and sometimes just wait for their laundry to finish drying up the block.

One of my very regular visitors during that time period was Anton, my neighbor from across the road. I was never sure if he really lived across the road, above the cafe or was one of the many artists and musicians who hung out across the street, either way it was a regular location for one of the regular people in our not-so-regular neighborhood. I liked Anton, he was clever and quick, well versed in his music and always in an impish mood even when disappointed or angry. I also enjoyed talking to Anton because he had wild ideas, was rather ambitious and was not going to be stopped - he was also quite high, quite often but was harmless.

Anton hung out with musicians and artists- he was a musician and artist and spoke often about "the best band he could ever put together. It would be waaaay out there , bigger than anything - not the manufactured slick British 'babyfood' but something supremely psychedelic and broad but accessible and dangerous". I didn't doubt Anton or his ability to do this. He had already produced one of my favorite cassette releases at the time entitled "Psalm 93 - Child of 60 Bitches".

For a homespun release, Psalm 93 had a production value that very few DIY cassettes had at the time...and a vision. Anton understood ambient drone music and had taken it to a level very few people had at the time. He abandoned that project and idea though. He had bigger aspirations I guess and really really liked swirling psychedelic rock.

One afternoon I sat on my stool behind the counter of the record store and Anton came in - a flurry - a serious flurry...dark circles under his eyes, arms moving about like windmills, a single cassette tape in his hand. "This is it - it's big. We have it now and I have the name. All of it came all at once....check it out...Brian Jonestown Masacre". I smile and laugh - it is a beautiful name, so perfect for where we are at the time, in the world, with music, for everything. He grabs a pen off the counter and scribbles "THE BRIANJONESTOWNE MASACRE ANTON 861-8683" on the front and back label of the cassette and hands it to me to put on the stereo. As the first track starts up he says , "That's it - I am sooooo down with this now and I need to sleep soon". He disappears out the door. The first Brian Jonestown Masacre demo tape - with no other information accompanying it, other than Anton's phone number - plays itself out and joins the collection of demo tapes on the shelf. It is 1990, three years before any Brian Jonestown Masacre album is released and quite possibly one of the only, or few, recordings of the original lineup.

Anton are you out there? How have you been?

Enjoy: Brian Jonestown Masacre - Demo - Track 2

Contains no dAS - Big City Orchestra at Bumbershoot 1993


I happened to dig this one up from the bottom of a very big box of cassettes, long forgotten, stashed away at the back of a closet. Beneath the piles of mail art and demo submissions laid the little cardboard folder fashioned so elegantly by Yr. Host Bobby emblazoned with "Big Shitgrin Orchestra". Inside that little pocket was a letter from Mr Host and a cassette that contained a live room recording of a rather odd Big City Orchestra show from the past.It was back in 1993, Yr Host Bobby had applied for Big City Orchestra to perform at the Bumbershoot Performing Arts festival in Seattle. Eventually he received the acceptance information and the confirmation that Big City Orchestra was going to be slotted to appear on the "Wild Stage" - coincidentally on the same day the Kinks were playing the main stage. As fate would have it this opportunity to appear at one of Seattle's premiere music festivals coincided with another Big City Orchestra performance that was already booked and confirmed - I believe it was in BCO's hometown area.dAS gave a quick call on the phone and we came to the conclusion that two BCO performances would occur on the same day in different states and myself and Yr Host Bobby would be the official representatives for BCO at Bumbershoot while dAS stayed behind and tended to the hometown duties BCO had already committed to.I packed up the van and grabbed Bill Peterson, a long time friend, who had banged a few pieces of metal in Nux Vomica and also had a project called Fresh Meat Cats. This project was best known for its brief stint with maniacal and time consuming tape manipulation, creating fields of washed out sound. We headed on our way up to Seattle, stopping at KAOS in Olympia on the way for a brief radio appearance before arriving at the doorstep of Yr Host Bobby.We discovered that Yr Host Bobby had also recruited, then Seattle area resident looper extraordinaire, Eric Muhs to join us. Eric was well known for arriving at gigs with a giant pile of - well - um - detritus, accompanied by everything else you can imagine, including the kitchen sink. He did not let us down...As the day of the performance arrived Bill and I fashioned some stage "costumes" for the show and we all packed up and headed out to perform. When Eric arrived at the stage door he had an entire van packed to the ceiling with 'equipment'. Yr Host Bobby set up his rig and Eric cast his stuff about according to the master plan. As BCO was announced and the set got under way, Yr Host Bobby started the first of many giant tape loops he had constructed that took up a large portion of the stage. The loops and the drones began and a giant pile of garbage - pots, pans, metal, bits and pieces of you name it - crawled up the aisle of the theater, strung together by Mr Muhs and attached to a BBQ Rotisserie at the front of theater - dragging slowly up the aisle inch by inch. The pile of garbage was alive, clanking and tumbling, preventing anyone from using the aisle as an exit and providing a mess of background clatter to the drones. As the drones built, Bill and I appeared, adding more to the mix and dancing about costumed as skyscrapers - or a "Big City".The show consisted primarily of a series of drones and sampled spoken word and giant tape loops and clatter. Specific references to various "Big City Orchestra Sound Effects" including "The Flying Nun" were announced strategically. At the'll hear...Listen below or download now from [...]

Nux Vomica - What She Found There


The first-ever film version of Lewis Carroll's tale has recently been restored by the BFI National Archive from severely damaged materials. Made just 37 years after Lewis Carroll wrote his novel and eight years after the birth of cinema, the adaptation was directed by Cecil Hepworth and Percy Stow, and was based on Sir John Tenniel's original illustrations. In an act that was to echo more than 100 years later, Hepworth cast his wife as the Red Queen, and he himself appears as the Frog Footman. Even the Cheshire cat is played by a family pet.

With a running time of just 12 minutes (8 of which survive), Alice in Wonderland was the longest film produced in England at that time. Film archivists have been able to restore the film's original colours for the first time in over 100 years.

We are releasing an edit from Nux Vomica's newest CD Saturnalia et Sigilaricia as an alternative soundtrack to the viewing experience. The soundtrack now plays between enhancing the story and reacting to the film damage in a way that enhances the viewing of the unrestorable defects of the film in a positive, yet experimental, light. The result brings out more of the beauty of the natural decay and contributes to the dream-like qualities of the film, in its present state. The result brings out more of the beauty of the natural decay and contributes to the dream-like qualities of the film, in its present state.

Instructions for viewing

1.) Start the embedded YouTube clip of Alice in Wonderland below
2.) Immediately click to start the embedded mp3
audio file to accompany the film (icon below the embedded video)
3.) Turn down the sound on the embedded YouTube
clip all the way.

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Nux Vomica: What She Found There (edit) - Audio track

click for audio

Gen Ken Montgomery - Live at Auricular Records


(image) September 29, 1991
Auricular Records
San Francisco, CA

A fantastic live in-store performance by Gen Ken Montgomery at Auricular Records.

Unlike most artists in his field, Montgomery doesn't come from art school circles (be them musical or visual). Untrained, he came to music from enthusiasm. He arrived in New York City in 1978 and soon got involved in the mail art and cassette underground scene, exchanging sound collage tapes with like-minded experimenters around the world.

Considered a pioneer of independent noise/concrete music within the cassette culture, Gen Ken was also founder of the Generator Sound Art Gallery, NYC, (1989-1992) and Generator Sound Art Inc. Possibly one of the nicest fellows in the noise/experimental scene at the time and worked hard to expose his fellow artists as best he could to the world of mail-art, DIY releases, live experimental music and good old noise.

From Francois Couture in All Music Guide:

"In 1989, Montgomery opened the first sound art gallery in New York City, Generator, where he exhibited mail art from his penpals and attempted to stimulate local awareness to the cassette movement. The experience was short-lived, but gave birth to other projects such as the co-founding of the labels Pogus Productions (with Al Margolis) and Generator Sound Art Inc. (with Scott Konzelmann, aka Chop Shop). Meanwhile his art began to attract some international attention, leading to the release of LPs on small German and Spanish labels in the late ‘80s, and more self-produced vinyl and CD artifacts in the ‘90s, including the 7" The Sound of Lamination (1994) which documents Montgomery's work with a laminator, a conceptual sound/installation/interactive project he presented throughout the decade. In 1995 he was even appointed Minister of Lamination by the Kingdoms of Elgaland-Vargaland, Leif Elggren and Carl Michael von Hausswolff's utopian virtual nation-cum-conceptual art project.

With the rise of sound art in academic circles at the end of the ‘90s, Montgomery began to work more, curating exhibitions and enjoying artists residencies (including one in 1999 at the Spritzenhaus in Hamburg, Germany). The release of Pondfloorsample in 2002 constitutes an encouraging step in the slow recognition of his unique work."

Listen now

Merzbow - Live at Kaleidoscope Records


(image) September 5, 1990 Kaleidoscope Records (aka Auricular Records) San Francisco, CA

In 1990, Masami Akita and Reiko A. graced the United States with a tour of performances of their singularly unique noise. For many this was the first chance to see Merzbow live and the first chance to be engulfed in the absolute ocean of sound that is a Merzbow performance. There is no Merzbow recording ever produced that can even come close to what the live experience is. Listening back to the live performances on recordings can not even capture the pure sonic ether that Masami and Reiko were capable of producing in most any environment. During their stop in Nortehrn California, Merzbow performed on several radio stations, in a Santa Cruz warehouse space, and a multi night stint at the Armpit Gallery in San Francisco with Haters and Big City Orchestra (those shows will be forthcoming). This particular recording comes from Kaeleidoscope Records in San Francisco. Masami and Reiko performed approximately 30 mins as a preview to what could be expected at the upcoming local shows.

enjoy a little noise soup from Merzbow

Daevid Allen Live at Auricular Records


(image) Daevid Allen: Spoken Word
Live at Auricular Records - Aug 1, 1991
San Francisco, CA

There is no one quite like Daevid Allen (Gong, Soft Machine, Magick Brother etc etc) and there is certainly nothing like spending an afternoon, or evening, with the man. He is one of those people of an indescribably personality - a king amongst pixies and a pixie amongst men. When Daevid came through San Francisco in 1991, I not only got to meet a life long hero of prog rock and possibilities, I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time with him; at live shows, in the studio recording and of course in our record store, Auricular Records. I played chauffer to Daevid and Magick Brother for about 2 weeks and it is a time I will not soon forget. While he was in town I had to have him do an instore - unfortunately, we could not coordinate a performance of Magick Brother - although I snuck Mark Robson away from Daevid long enough to perform with Nux Vomica. Daevid showed up in the store with his friend Tom the Poet and armed with just a single microphone kept a store full of us entertained with his wit, glee, songs and stories for an entire afternoon. This recording is a small portion of the antics of the day caught on tape.

enjoy Daevid Allen live at Auricular Records

The Ophelias - The Ophelias


(image) Strange Weekend Records

Thinking back to 1987 boggles the mind sometimes, however, pouring over the collection of vinyl the other day I pulled this from the shelf and a lot of that time period came rushing back.

The Ophelias were a San Francisco based band led by multi-instrumentalist and singer Leslie Medford. Pulling influences from all over the place, with a special nod to prog rock and the works of Peter Hammill, The Ophelias were one of the more refreshing and original bands around the San Francisco Bay Area at the time.

This LP features their first released material and what was often the foundation of many a live show. The self-titled LP was self produced by the band. I got my copy from Leslie himself as, at the time, we both were working at the same record store in Berkeley. This was one of the few co-worker bands I stood behind ever - attended numerous shows and really really liked.

Fortunately enough The Ophelias were signed to Rough Trade (where I then worked) and a small handful of other albums and some of the fancy new Compact Disc thingies, with better production (and some still readily available) were released. The Ophelias followed me through a large portion of my early years in California and I still appreciate and enjoy their music some 20+ years later and realize there are not many bands out there that did or could do what they did. Amazingly enough they produced a video that appeared on MTV's 120 minutes - a cover for Moby Grape's Lawrence of Euphoria. While not indicative of their talents or style this was still a great treat at the time.

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Although there were several line-up changes, including David Immergluck of the Monks of Doom and the Counting Crows and New Zealand's Keith Dion (Producer, band leader for Noel Redding from The Jimi Hendrix Experience 1997-99 and Producer for Arthur Lee and Love's release "Electrically Speaking"), this represents the stew that started it all. The band was ranked as one of the best local SF groups in their day and shared a unique time period where the San Francico sound had been reborn and offered a unique and varied listen. I still love this album and I long to hear it one day remastered - who knows - stranger things have happened!

have a listen to The Ophelias

Iancu Dumitrescu


(image) Alternances Bas-reliefs Apogeum Reliefs

Electracord ST-CS 0191

Bucharest, Romania

Avant-garde composer Iancu Dumitrescu was born July 15, 1944 in Sibiu, Romania.

Dumitrescu studied composition in Bucharest under Alfred Mendelssohn. He studied conducting and philosophy with Sergiu Celibidache who led Dumitrescu who gave him generous lessons in the principles of phenomenology.

He began composing his mature works in the early 1970's. In 1976 he founded the Hyperion Ensemble, which he describes as "a multimedia group dedicated to experimental music."

Dumitrescu has composed a large body of works for acoustic instruments and ensembles as well as works combining acoustic and electronic sounds and works composed entirely using tape or computer.

Dumitrescu describes his music as "acousmatic" but disclaims a relationship with the Acoustmatic Music of French musique concrete pioneer Pierre Schaeffer. His comositions are based on the acousmatic aesthetics by virtue of whichthe sound is subjected to analyses and dissociations (harmonic multisons - diagonal sounds) which confer it a genuine force of suggestion and penetration. He accepts the "spectralist" label, though he distinguishes his work from some others in the spectral school in that it is not serial. Dumitrescu has been quoted as saying, "I think of myself as a spectralist, but in completely different way from the French."

Dumitrescu is married to fellow composer Ana-Maria Avram (born 1961); they have more than 20 joint CD releases on their Edition Modern label. Recordings of Dumitrescu's works have also been released by Edition RZ, ReR Megacorp, Generations Unlimited, and other record labels.

The following recordings were composed between 1967 and 1972. Vinyl noise from the original Romanian LP release has not been removed so as not to compromise some of the more subtle sounds in the compositions which could have been lost in doing so.

listen to Iancu Dumitrescu

New Music: The Alternative 10 - Volume II, 1984


(image) Various Artists: Art of Noise, Romeo Void, Hoodoo Gurus, Robert Gorl, Split Enz, Jimmy and the Suspects

Radio Free America

Marilyn Pittman's radio television career span over two decades. From rock jock in Albuquerque to work as talk show host, stand-up comic, and commentator in San Francisco she is a versatile and dynamic media personality.

Marilyn didn't want to be a waitress at the age of 40, so she got into radio and spent four years in classic rock and pop radio. In 1980 and '81, she was a radio and television news anchor but decided she would pursue comedy instead.

Due to the lack of comedic outlets in Albuquerque she reinvented herself as an independent radio producer and created Radio Free America's "New Music: The Alternative Ten", a half-hour mix of new wave music and interviews nationally syndicated on over 300 college station in 1983-'84.

This particular episode Volume II, 1984 featured Music by the Split Enz, Hoodoo Gurus, Robert Gorl, Jimmy and the Suspects and a few special treats as well. Deborah Iyall, singer and lyricist for Romeo Void chats with Marilyn Pittman about the then new "Instincts" LP and how it came to be.

Also included in the show is a unique "collage" of the Art of Noise's LP "Who's Afraid of the Art of Noise" and Producer John Riegler's experimental sound adventures through the Jungle's of El Dorado.

All of this is brought to you courtesy of the new (in 1984) Today Contraceptive Sponge!

have a listen to "New Music: The Alternative 10 - Volume II, 1984"

Peyote Healing Chants of the Native American Church


(image) As Sung By Ralph Turtle
1972 Canyon Records C-6094

Phoenix, AZ

From the jacket notes by Robert Nuss:

"Peyote chants are generally uniform from one tribe to another which make them unique in American Indian Music. They are also unlike any of the traditional songs of the Plains Indians where the native American Church developed. The high degree of tension, breaks, quavers, and accents typical of Plains music are absent. They are sung in quiet unstressed style similar to the tribes of the Sonoran Desert and parts of Mexico. The drum and rattle are played at a constant tempo and beat in eigth notes top give the impression of a rapid tempo. A majority of peyote chants are sung within a range of a fifth to an octave and as with most Indian music have a descending melodic pattern. A phrase is usually composed of several small downward intervals occurring between phrases. There are a few variations which are due to some tribal differences in musical style during the early formative years of the peyote ritual in the 1870's and 1880's.

In 1918 several independent tribal churches joined together to form the Native American Church, a formal non-profit corporation for the purpose of presenting a strong united front to meet the hostility of the outside world. Several states were attempting to outlaw the use and possession of peyote through formal lawmaking. The organized Native American Church was better able to lead the way for the smaller local groups in court cases over the legality of the use of peyote in prayer meetings. The Church's arguments are based on constitutional guarantees of freedom of religion and on differences of opinion between Church and states on the effects of peyote as it is used in prayer meetings."

listen to Peyote Healing Chants

Strafe für Rebellion: Vögel


(image) 1989 Touch Music
London, England

Germany has always handed us a myriad of remarkable, unique and unexplainable musicians throughout the years. Prog, electronic, space rock, techno, punk, industrial - none of these genres would be complete without a chapter in their book about how this German band or that German band perfected the genre and left the playing field an impossible-to-navigate minefield for all others who tried to attempt it. This seems to apply right down to albino pop music (but I will save Heino for another day).

To be the best of a genre is one thing, but to actually manage to rise above multiple genres, sound itself, philosophy and ideology and strike your place as masterful sound artists and manipulators of field recordings in a truly post-Cageian fashion, yet not dull your accessibility with academia, is a beautiful achievement. Strafe für Rebellion has stood out for the better part of 25 years in their sound accomplishments. With their ability to paint entrancing landscapes of sound from bits of wire and foam and birds and trains and squeaky wheels, the engulf a listener in a world, or universe unlike any we are used to, in which every step through it carries a small bit of joy, fear, trepidation, chaos, and infinite beauty.

Strafe für Rebellion's 1989 compilation Vögel contains pieces dating back almost ten years into the ensembles past. The duo of Bernd Kastner and Siegfried M. Syniuga have existed since 1979. Over the course of several albums, they have developed a style of abstract instrumental music that owes a lot to their use of home-made instruments, found objects and field recordings. In the 1993 interview with Brian Duguid, they described their musical techniques as follows:

"As you probably know we do not use any electronic music instruments. We do not condemn electronic music instruments at all, it is just not our approach. One central aspect of our work is the use of field recordings, either wild or domesticated animals, machines and all kinds of noises that we think are peculiar in some way. We go searching for sounds during trips, we occasionally find them or we consciously go looking for special sounds (visiting a zoo, for example). When we do field recordings already some compositional elements come into being - they go beyond the pure documentary sounds and beyond the quality of our normal archive. We also use 'normal' music instruments and 'prepare' them, there are also self-made music instruments or noise machines. But we never use anyone else's pre-recorded sounds; we have never used samplers nor rhythm machines."

Oddly enough this particular compilation contains cover versions of Patsy Cline's "Crazy" and "Walking After Midnight" as well as Leonard Cohen's "Sister's of Mercy". At first these covers are indiscernable, however, they slowly unfold into what may be the most unique interpretations of any pre-existing song ever attempted.

Enjoy listening to Vögel

HWYL: The Intimate Texture of Sound


Various ArtistsHWYL 1 1987 HWYL RecordsWhile sometimes bordering on new-agey, don't let this release fool you. This compilation of atmospheric music released by Steve Parry in 1987, is best described by his liner notes:"For many years I have been interested in the concept of atmospheric music. HWYL has been created to promote and release original music from a musical idiom employing classical, primitive, jazz, folk, minimalism, instrumental modern to future forms of music. Music conceived through emotion to evoke emotion. As are the creative and compositional boundaries of this music limitless then so are the listeners interpretation of them. Sound is ever present, at times we are simply unaware of its being. Silence has characteristic qualities unto its own.This music encompasses both sound and silence. Music to create or enhance an atmosphere. Perceive then this sound as your own."Steve Parry, Director HWYL York 19871.Side A Trevor Stainsby , Richard Hall Desert Sunrise (1:22) 2.Side A Gilbert Isbin When It's Over (3:37) 3.Side A Steve Jadd* Solitary Lands (4:46) 4.Side A Gary Caulfield Sanctuary (3:35) 5.Side A Dafydd Pierce Wood Nymphs (Tylwyth Teg) (2:29) 6.Side A Trevor Stainsby Full Moon Over Still Waters (4:11) 7.Side A Gramophone Society, The Patagonia (3:18) 1.Side B Martin Coles Heaven's Gate (3:56) 2.Side B Max Inca Dreaming In The Azure Forest (4:01) 3.Side B Tranceport Chrona (3:24) 4.Side B Kevin O'Neill Intimations Of Immortality (4:07) 5 Side B Jenny Curtis Dolphin (4:48) 6.Side B Myth Gestalt Surrounded By Shadows (4:16)take a listen to HWYL[...]

The Croiners: Generator Live! 2/24/90


This is a cassette, from 1990, dug out of a bin in my house over the past weekend. In 1989, about the same time my record store (Auricular Records - then Kaleidoscope) opened, Ken Montgomery opened Generator in NYC. Generator was a personal/public experiment that began on June 1, 1989. Having been involved in sound art music culture and the international mail art and cassette networking scene for 10 years while being based in New York's Lower East Side Ken wanted to find out how much of an interest there was in the same scene locally. Generator quickly became a meeting place for those already attracted to this international network who might have otherwise only known each other by post. It also provided an opportunity to expose this culture to a new audience of people who stumbled upon it, read about it or heard about it who wouldn't otherwise have known about this music and culture. This release basically comes from a place that could be considered another coast' s sister experiment to Auricular Records.

From the sleeve notes by Gen Ken Montgomery:

Generator was proud to host a rare appearance by the Croiners. There was an elaborate set of midi samplers and controllers which were used in an invigorating performance of the kind of off the wall spoken word and and repetitive juxtapositions the Croiners are infamous for. You'll hear plenty of laughter in the audience as the wit of teh Croiners makes it hard to resist. On the wall at Generator hung a myriad of promotional prints from Jim Tapes depicting The Croiners over three years with allof their wacky slogans - G.K.M.

From the Generator website:

Generator is a resource for sound artists and sound art related projects.

GENERATOR SOUND ART, INC. was created to produce and disseminate original recordings by dedicated sound artists, presenting releases of Electronic, Electro-Acoustic, Noise, and Experimental Music. Uncompromising, non-commercial, and definitely not for everyone. These projects are geared towards the discerning and adventurous listener.

Generator Sound Art, Inc. is Gen Ken Montgomery, founder of the GENERATOR SOUND ART GALLERY, NYC, (1989-1992) and Scott Konzelmann a.k.a. CHOP SHOP.

Download The Croiners: Generator Live! 2.24.90

Reverb Mother Fuckers: Route 666


(image) 1988 Race Age Records
Limited Edition 666 copies

80's NY Scum much better than Tears for Fears. While we may remember greats forging their way out of the NY scum rock scene as well as their bongs, such as the Butthole Surfers and the dressed for success White Zombie, many of the forerunners of this lovely tickle of rock and roll remain unheralded for their pain and suffering as they shed years off their life making dirty rotten rock available for us all to consume whilst paving the way for the watered down, I just bought my torn jeans at Macy's, Im so sad because I have to eek out a living on heroine and a major label contract, homogenized corporate grunge to follow.

Still, to this day, the best named, dirtiest, scummiest, most confusing mass of wtf and where did it come from, inventors of NY scum rock was and always will be the Reverb Motherfuckers. How can you not win with a name like that? How did the Butthole Surfers come out on top?

The Reverb Motherfuckers release Route 666 is a limited edition of 666 copies, day glo silkscreen covered, tribute to everything you should be afraid of if you take, or are planning to take LSD. You get so much more than scum rock. Tracks on this album go from heavy post punk NY tasiness, to sample driven swirling tape loopy craziness. I think this album is trying to tell me somethign, Im not sure what it is, and im not sure I really want to know. Don't you love getting that feeling from your music collection.

This is the original s*#t featuring Wild Man, 4Skins, and Bubble -- the nicknames listed on the cover for Roy Edroso, Ray Sage, and John Terhorst. You may recognize the name John Terhorst as he went on to form other amazing bands like Shaved Pigs - no, you still don't remember him? - anyways the Shaved Pigs are awesome as well and maybe, just maybe, that is a post for another day.

Sit back, relax and enjoy the soothing sounds of the Reverb Motherfuckers Route 666.

Ear|Trumpet - Bring on the Dirt


(image) Data Terminal Systems Records - DTS|001
London, England

Stephen S.: organ piano, synth
Neil M.: vocals, drums, organ, tapes
Tony B.: bass, organ
Geoff V.: bass
BC Gilbert: guitar
Gary G.: dolak

This album has been a long time resident of my record collection, having braved great tortures since the late 80's when it was acquired and ignored for almost 15 years until recently.

What do you get when you take a Tony Barber of the Buzzcocks, BC Gilbert of Wire/Dome/Wir etc etc, and Steve Severin of Siouxsie and the Banshees/The Glove and mix them together with a few other sordid chaps. actually get an album that serves as a reference point for what a lot of others would do and as a historical document of what many had done already. Suprisingly, it isnt a fearful pseudo-goth celebration of drab masturbatory illness.

This album sits in a dark stew of possibilities and presents itself as some bizarre missing link of alternative art rock. One part Wire, one part Fall, a dash of PIL, a tip of the hat to Bauhaus...there are so many bits and pieces of the easily recognized sounds of this time period but it plays as original. I really didn't think this album would stand the test of time but when I placed it on the turntable I was more than pleasantly surprised. I have always been surprised that I do not see Ear|Trumpet in more record collections and, cited more as an influence or recognized for it's "supergroup(?)" qualities.

Well then - have a taste of Ear|Trumpet

Various Artists: The Peter Fonda Album


(image) 10’’ vinyl LP (25cm) * Original 1994 issue * CONTAINS XEROX BOOKLET

This gem of a 10" was purchased at the original Aquarius Records location in San Francisco in 1994. It was most likely not purchased and more likely a trade at the time as I remember being somewhat overwhelmed with my record collection and was really trading in extras of rare items and miscellaneous junk so I could dump new sounds into my ears every week.

At the time there was this silly little garage-psych type revival going on and what better than to do a 10" slab of vinyl garage-psyche tribute to Peter Fonda? Every band included is from San Francisco and most had only cassettes available on the market at the time. There is also an association here to underground filmmaker John Moritsugu. Moritsugu's films were defined by their "lo-fi" aesthetic, and often shot on very poor, 16mm film stock to give them a homemade, muddled quality. Moritsugu's films were absurdist comedies - seems like this project is an extension of that same idea. Several tracks were also produced by Paul Hoaglin who made a name for himself over time as a producer and member of The Mother Hips. I still am not sure why but it seemed reasonable at the time. Either way you cant beat a 6-track 10" hose cover is just a simple folded printed piece of heavy stock in two colors ink (ugly red and black). had a small booklet to! 8.5x11 folded xeroxed cut and paste typewriter wonder graphics and scrawls - cool!

This is still a cool piece of vinyl to break out every so often on a rainy Sunday and still holds up as a cool piece of San Francisco nostalgia from the time period. K-Tel Wet Dream's track Sissy Bar will just warp your head and the Zip Code Rapists contribution Her Majesty is really a cover you just couldn't imagine if you tried.

1. Fondu : Peter Fonda!?

2. Benjamin Kitestring : Feel So Good

3. Moritsugu, Jon : Where It Goes Down

4. Broom : Pumpkin Eater

5. K-Tel Wet Dream : Sissy Bar

6. Zip Code Rapists : Her Majesty

Enjoy the tribute to Peter the Great

Minutes LTM V:XV


While we are on the subject of James Nice and LTM - I'll also offer up Minutes, a compilation which only James could describe adequately so I will allow his words to do so:"Minutes was intended as a modern literary and 'intellectual' review combining spoken word and music, and owed a heavy debt to early Crepuscule collections such as From Brussels With Love and Fruit of the Original Sin. At the time I think I fancied that I was bringing high culture to the masses. Today I struggle to find any rationale to the project at all...Both Richard Jobson poems were taped live in Holland with Steven Brown of Tuxedomoon guesting on piano, and in fact the musical accompaniment to Anonymous is a Tuxedomoon piece, Lowlands Tone Poem. Jobson also provided a tape of the two Jean Cocteau poems, recorded with the Dan Parrish Jazz Orchestra in 1929, which had in turn come from Bill Nelson. The Winston Tong track was culled from Like The Others (then a limited Crepuscule cassette-only release long deleted), which combined skewed versions of Euro ballad Going Out of My Head with (apparently) the Yardbird's For Your Love. A cross-channel trip to collect the mastertape at the end of 1986 marked my second visit to Brussels, and my first encounter with Michel Duval of Crepuscule. A lesser influence was the el label, whose Mike Alway proved a constant source of help, inspiration and amusement. The Louis Philippe track had already appeared as an el single, and served to add to the European flavour of the project, whereas Bid of the Monochrome Set offered a choice of three spare tracks. For some inexplicable reason I passed on a live take of The Lighter Side of Dating and an unheard demo track (Something About You) in favour of a distinctly ropey accapella track, written (if you please) by their sound engineer. Since neither Philippe nor the Set were writers I can only assume that they must have been intellectuals.The treated Burroughs tracks had previously appeared on a Fresh Sounds flexi issued with a US magazine called Talk Talk, while the Jacques Derrida section was little more than a conceptual joke. In July 1986 the seminal modern philosopher and deconstructionist had appeared at a seminar at Glasgow Strathclyde University, the organisers of which had made a tape of an English language Q&A session. Having seen Ken McMullen's impenetrable film Ghostdance I guessed correctly that Derrida would consent to a fragment appearing on vinyl, and edited down an exchange in which an Australian academic become increasingly lost in the corridors. Derrida had no idea why I should want to include him on record, and in truth neither did I.The sleeve was the first commissioned by LTM from a professional designer, namely Thomi Wroblewski. Thomi had a studio in Soho above John Calder Publishers, and was then working steadily both for Calder and for el. According to my diary, February 23rd 1987 saw me 'round to Thomi's studio in Brewer Street to finalise sleeve designs, me rejecting his favourites in favour of one he considered "far too obvious"'.Disaster struck on release in April 1987. Although 1000 copies had been ordered from the pressing plant, just 500 were delivered to Rough Trade Distribution. This passed unnoticed until the first run had sold out, with the result that by the time the error was corrected (and the album re-pressed) the initial momentum had been lost.Although Minutes failed to sell out, the presence of Derrida and Burroughs sparked considerable press interest. The NME puzzled over a 'bizarre compilation of contemporary and archive material', the overall conception of which wa[...]

Varous Artists: Hommage a Duras


(image) Interior Music (1987)

Interior Music was run in close association with Crépuscule by James Nice (Les Temps Modernes).

James Nice founded LTM Publishing (Les Temps Modernes) in 1984. His earliest releases championed the work of Section 25, Happy Family, The and Crispy Ambulance, among others.

In 1987 he moved to Brussels and began work at Les Disques Du Crépuscule, handling their mail
order operations. His role expanded swiftly into being, in his words, "a full-time job as a gofer for [Crépuscule boss] Michel Duval". His work was rewarded with his own sub-label, Interior Music.

Hommage a Duras was released on Interior Design. The sleeve lists Jobson's The Kiss, The Dance And The Death instead of India Song. Note that most
song titles are titles of novels by Margueritte Duras. The LP was previously released in different form and different sleeve in 1985 on CREPUSCULE AU JAPON (SC 1009-L).

In 1988, James Nice switched from Crépuscule to a position at Play It Again Sam (PIAS), and in 1990
decided to reactivate LTM. This second phase of his label really hit its stride when Nice started licensing and reissuing classic, long-deleted Factory and Crépuscule albums.

listen to Hommage a Duras

Graham Kerr: A Festive Occasion Just For You


(image) The Galloping Gourmet
Freemantle Records, 1971

Almost anyone who grew up in the 70's remembers Graham Kerr, The Galloping Gourmet. Writer, performer, designer, Kerr managed to capture romance, fun and enthusiasm for food on his unusual ad-lib cookery shows which won him world-wide fame.

Graham Kerr would sprinkle his cooking teachings with great understated humor and cynicism. This album presents Kerr as instructor, poet and comedian. I challenge Martha Stewart to describe a "turgid ripping open of aluminum packets" or even just to use the term turgid as powerfully as Kerr. The album starts with Kerr explaining exactly how to create a top-notch menu for a "festive occasion" including recommending washing out the ashtrays "unless you are the type who will use the empty oyster shells". The first half of the album continues with Graham reading fan letters - including a note from a 82 year old woman who explains how Kerr's tight pants are not sexy and how she feels sorry for how uncomfortable he must be. The first half finishes up with him yucking it up with his "spicy stories".

The second half of the album is a Kerr-picked selection of music, perfect for any festive occasion. Just in case you need to create this outstanding, fantastically festive dinner the LP includes all the recipes in the liner notes.

"May you have good coffee and good company above all else" - Graham Kerr

learn to be festive with Graham Kerr

Screamers Original Soundtrack by Luciano Michelini


(image) Whenever a movie has more than six names you have to start to worry a little bit - and sometimes even more so about the quality of its elements. That may not be so with Screamers, Sergio Martino's 1979 fantasy-horror-adventure (AKA L'Isola degli Uomini Pesce The Island of the Fishmen, Island of Mutations and on and on and on).

Luciano Michelini is probably more known right now for his contributions to the soundtrack to Curb Your Enthusiasm but previously has been known as one of Rome's busiest cinema musicians. Michelini started his career in the early 1960's when he scored many of the "sword and sandal" films. He has also been known to arrange background msuic for top Italian singers and voal groups.

Album coordinator Jim Wynorski's notes on the back cover of this album says it best ...

"But enough's about time to slip this record onto your turntable, turn up the volume, and let your ears take the mind on an incredible, unforgettable journey. But be wanred: SCREAMERS music may actually turn you inside out."

listen and be turned inside out


Charles Ives: Sonate No 1 - Three-Page Sonata - The Anti Abolitionist Riots - Etude No. 20


(image) Accord Musidisc (France)

I am going to continue in the theme with another French release from 1990/91. Charles Ives' first sonata was started in 1901 and composed over the course of 8 years and was not performed for the first time until 40 years later. The sonata itself is best described in the liner notes:

"More than Schoenberg, Bartok or Janacek, Ives, in relative isolation, broke with the conventions and with the very language of the piano. The intensity, boldness and organic force of this score, its wild experiments, diversions and detours, its lack of propriety, still have all the pugnacity and insolence."

Other pieces included on this recording were written during the time when Ives was completing Sonata No 1. Many of the similarities between these pieces provide insight on the composer's state of mind at the time; " particular his delight in experimentation and the use of unheard of devices demolishing the romantic piano and creating a vernacular for American popular music."

listen to the Charles Ives works

Markus Schmickler: Onea Gako


(image) Odd Size Records - Paris
Released 1993

Just about 15 years ago my friend Laurent Pernice, overlord of Odd Size Records, whom I have not seen since, had stayed in my home for - well - quite some time. He had somehow gotten a hold of a bottle of Chateau Margeaux which he shared with us on his final night and it will probably be one of the few I ever drink in my life. Upon polishing off that lovely bottle of silky wonder, he handed me this release from his label which had somehow escaped us the entire time he stayed in our home.
While he was with us that year Laurent, myself and my wife went to raves, live techno, old school noise shows, rock bands - you name it. We were pretty much out in the clubs every night taking in something. Laurent liked everything and I know that's why he released this album. This album is as much ambient as it is industrial, as it is classical, as it is metal, as it is prog. There are a fistful of genres explored here that's for sure - and it freakin' rocks. Trombone, viola, double bass, drums, clarinet - and it rocks and in an entirely different way than you would expect. Holy crap on a pita! This release was actually way ahead of its time even in 1993 - and if released today would probably garner some attention. If you consider that the grunge era was pretty much ushered in at this point and think back to what you were listening to and hearing at the time this may surprise you a bit. Of particular interest also is the inclusion of C-Schulz in the lineup who at about the same time appeared on Extreme Records with some fairly intriguing work of his own.

listen to Onea Gako here

Slap: Bed of Nails


(image) An Index of Abstract Electronics
Duotone Records (DUO-08)
Originally Released 1987

Stephen Nester co-founder of The Happiness Boys, known for their relentless instrumental electronic music that eschewed commercialism, eventually evolved his work into SLAP. Between the years of 1984 and 1987 Nester worked on his solo project SLAP with minimal support from others. There are appearances by others on his albums but these are primarily solo works. One notable collaborator however would be Vicki Richards - violin - whom many may recognize for her work with the Florida based band Black Tape for a Blue Girl. Nester introduced Richards to the band whom she collaborated with multiple times and whose appearance on this compilation of tracks adds a haunting measure similar, if not more dissonant, than her work with BTFABG. Bed of Nails serves as somewhat of a diary of Nester's work during this period in the 80's. One could easily site many influences, from ultra pop electronic pioneers to lesser known acts such as Tuxedomoon. The elements of deep emotional soundtracks are sometimes suppressed by the limitations of the equipment used for electronic music at the time, however, this still serves as a missing link of sorts in the electronic, experimental, industrial, post punk music era. If you find this interesting I would highly recommend exploring - that reads as purchasing - ARC00012 Ghost Stories CD (Projekt: Archive, 1982-94) from Projeckt Records.

listen to SLAP - Bed of Nails