Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Blessed are the Cheese Makers

What with the hyperbolic drug referencing, the groaningly bad puns ('Mrs. Skinupski' indeed!), and some rather puzzling, introspective, subversive satire, one wonders what Terminal Cheesecake were really all about.

Their sound on this album is quite different from the other recordings I've posted.
It's curious in that it's the earlier of releases but it's a lot tighter and far more 'organised'.
Their output just got messier and messier - better and better, I think - whereas most get tighter and tighter.

And speaking of bands who got tighter and tighter [until they became hardly worth listening to], it's this album that inspires the trope commonly associated with Terminal Cheesecake: to be compared with the Butthole Surfers.

The guitar is certainly more central to the sound on this album, and it is grindy in that Paul Leary kind of way; but the overall sound has far more of a drone than the Surfers ever mustered, and with the bass really being the engine, the driving force of each track - rather like Jah Wobble leading those early PIL tunes - the tracks are more contained, more claustrophobic; determined entirely by bass and rhythm; much like industrial music.

At times, Pearlesque King of the Jewmost sounds more Rev Co than Butthole Surfers, with similar use of loops and sampling: mainly spoken word clips; freaky and gratuitous news reports on ritualistic murder, paranormal activity, irresponsible medical procedures, etc.

As for the title....
I haven't got a clue.
And that takes me back to my original thought.
What were Terminal Cheesecake really all about?

And just what did they think of their audience...?

Terminal Cheesecake - Pearlesque King of the Jewmost (1992)

Satan is Real
Ish Tseren
Coils: Chapter II
Mrs. Skinupski Speaks
Neu Seeland

CD rip to mp3s, artwork included.
Spiritual cheese here

Monday, 7 March 2011

Abbie Someone

With a residual smattering of dub; this is the best of the live Bad Brains' albums.
Timeless stuff; and never more pertinent than now: for the youth are indeed getting restless - I blame sun spots - those who aren't plugged into Facebook or mainlining silicone, of course.

It should never work.
It certainly doesn't on paper; in theory.
A marketeer's nightmare.

But by Jove, Bad Brains not only proved that black guys could play hardcore, they mixed it up with some dub and roots' sounds; and you know what: no one went to the bar: everyone just dropped a gear: the mosh bowed down and we skanked and we swayed.

All three styles Bad Brains incorporated are included here: their faster than fast hardcore delivery (and they go even faster on this recording: the opening 'I' is spat with such rapid staccato it sounds like it's sung "in tongues"); their later metal, note warping period; and their wonderfully idiosyncratic take on dub. Excellently exemplified here with some well chosen covers.
Never has 'Day Tripper' sounded so druggie, or 'She's a Rainbow' so horny.
They also turn Dennis Brown's 'Revolution' into a true polemic; ideologically supporting their own 'The Youth are Getting Restless', a persuasive rallying cry to all.

So the odd bed fellows made for the perfect marriage.
The punky reggae party continued.
Long may it do so. Long may it reign.

Bad Brains - The Youth are Getting Restless, Live at the Paradiso, Amsterdam, 1987 (1990)

Rock For Light
Right Brigade
House of Suffering
Day Tripper/She's a Rainbow
Coptic Times
Sacred Love
Let Me Help
The Youth are Getting Restless
Banned in D.C.
Sailin' On
Fearless Vampire Killer
At the Movies
Revolution (Dub)
Pay to Cum
Big Takeover

Excellent vinyl rip @320kbs
Get Restless here

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Oily Num Nums

Another side of dub music in the nineteen-nineties was an addition to the rather limited genre that could only have emerged from Britain.
A Special Brew; a heady mix; ever so, ever so crusty; full of the monotony of ritualistic mantra, while brimming with energy and aural satisfaction.

Skronk, someone coined it (sounds like a Nick Kent word, but I'm not sure of its derivation as it doesn't appear in the OED. Surprisingly); dub is what it is.
But filthy dub. Full of mud, blood and sweat dub.
The boom makes my windows vibrate and my fillings tingle; and if I shut my eyes I smell canvas and am hit with wafts of weed. Then some pissed dude stands on my foot and I spill my drink all down my trousers....

Less manic than their magnum opus King of all Spaceheads, but still very dark; and those strange interjections placed between the monster dub work outs are really quite disturbing - just why Dame Clara Butt turns up in the middle of things performing a turn is beyond me; maybe it's a Finnegans Wake type thing... Discuss....

Terminal Cheesecake - Gateau D'Espace (1993)

Please Be Seated
Oily Bud
Herbal Alien Flavour
Extra Oily
Dame Clara Butt
Blatant Drug Reference

As my vinyl copy can only be considered a remix due to just too many clicks and pops I have upped the CD version.
For your delectation: CD rip to mp3s.
Grab a slice of space cake here

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Piping Down the Valleys Wild

I've been listening to some Bush Chemists recently after grabbing a copy of their wicked Light Up Your Spliff (there), and it reminded me of this little gem I had tucked away; and as I haven't put up any roots or rub-a-dub stylings for a while, here's something special to keep it bubbling.

Dubs From Zion Valley is a diplomatically split album from two of Britain's finest dub producers: Jonah Dan (Bongoman) and Dougie Wardrop (The Bush Chemists; this being his debut).

The solid sounds produced are iconic of the nineties' British dub scene: synthetic beats, trancey bass patterns, delays, decays and lots and lots of reverberation; giving the old ear-ways a thorough blasting; getting right down deep; massaging the bowel; tickling the perineum.

Have a tickle on me.

Jonah Dan Meets The Bush Chemists - Dubs From Zion Valley (1994)

Jonah Dan:

Dangerous Dub
Tehilim (Psalms 30 & 47)
Meditation Rock
Zion Valley
Selassie I Highway
Meditation Rock - Horns Version
Yom Kippur

The Bush Chemists:

Trial Dub
4 Minute Dub
Voices Dub
Rimshot Get Clap
Playfool Dub
The Mighty Sphinx Dub

CD rip to mp3s, artwork included.
Get down here