Monday, 31 October 2011

For I Am Every Dead Thing

A Nocturnal

'Tis the year's midnight, and it is the day's,
Lucy's, who scarce seven hours herself unmasks ;
The sun is spent, and now his flasks
Send forth light squibs, no constant rays ;
The world's whole sap is sunk ;
The general balm th' hydroptic earth hath drunk,
Whither, as to the bed's-feet, life is shrunk,
Dead and interr'd ; yet all these seem to laugh,
Compared with me, who am their epitaph.

Study me then, you who shall lovers be
At the next world, that is, at the next spring ;
For I am every dead thing,
In whom Love wrought new alchemy.
For his art did express
A quintessence even from nothingness,
From dull privations, and lean emptiness ;
He ruin'd me, and I am re-begot
Of absence, darkness, death—things which are not.

All others, from all things, draw all that's good,
Life, soul, form, spirit, whence they being have ;
I, by Love's limbec, am the grave
Of all, that's nothing. Oft a flood
Have we two wept, and so
Drown'd the whole world, us two ; oft did we grow,
To be two chaoses, when we did show
Care to aught else ; and often absences
Withdrew our souls, and made us carcasses.

But I am by her death—which word wrongs her—
Of the first nothing the elixir grown ;
Were I a man, that I were one
I needs must know ; I should prefer,
If I were any beast,
Some ends, some means ; yea plants, yea stones detest,
And love ; all, all some properties invest.
If I an ordinary nothing were,
As shadow, a light, and body must be here.

But I am none ; nor will my sun renew.
You lovers, for whose sake the lesser sun
At this time to the Goat is run
To fetch new lust, and give it you,
Enjoy your summer all,
Since she enjoys her long night's festival.
Let me prepare towards her, and let me call
This hour her vigil, and her eve, since this
Both the year's and the day's deep midnight is.

John Donne

Happy Samhain!
Bauhaus - Bela Lugosi's Dead (1979)

Bela Lugosi's Dead

Cd rip to mp3s
Mourn here

Friday, 28 October 2011

Funny Folk

I first encountered Jake Thackray during his stint on BBC's That's Life!; soon usurped by Stilgoe he gained his own programme buried in a mid-week graveyard slot on BBC2; no one else I knew watched it.
It was my little secret.

I was surprised therefore, some years later, while at The Elephant Fayre in Port Eliot, when arriving at a tent to see Jake perform there were others in attendance who also seemed to know who he was.
It was 1985, I think. I did get a photo, but unfortunately it's more a picture of a speaker than of Jake Thackray. I must have had the camera on the wrong setting, which may have had something to do with that funny tasting oaty cake I'd quaffed earlier....

Thackray is often compared to a Belgian singer who I can't for the life of me remember the name of at the moment; anyway, unfair on Thackray I always thought, as I checked out the Belgian guy and he's shit.

Thackray on the other hand, is really rather good.
His delivery is fantastically bizarre (staccato spat syllables; Derek Nimmo in a strop like), his humour superb, his timing exquisite.
More of a wit than a comic, his playful use of language is loaded with guilt, love and mortality, and those ever present Catholic concerns are what make Jake's songs so listenable.
Here's what the liner notes have to say [click to read]:

(Twee or what!)

Thackray became erratic towards the end of his career, gaining a reputation for unreliability as he failed to fulfill bookings.
I feel kind of privileged to have seen him when I did; not only did he turn up, but he was very, very funny, going down a storm in that packed out big top.

My favourite? Gotta be 'Isobel'.
I'm just an old romantic bastard, I guess....

Jake Thackray - Live Performance (1971)

Family Tree
The Hole
Miss World
Pass Milord the Rooster Juice
Remember Bethlehem
Ladies Basic Freedoms Polka
The Cactus
Leopold Alcox
The Lodger
The Last Will and Testament of Jake Thackray

Decent vinyl rip @320kbs

This is the original now deleted vinyl edition.
An expanded version of this concert was released in 2006 on CD.
Giggle-on here

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Huffin' Mud

Garage punk with a dash of psyched-out surf.
Includes profanity, mindless boogie, hyperbolic fuzz and all manner of absurdity; done in the best possible taste, of course: loud, fast and totally in ya face.

Two bands are better than one is obviously the reasoning behind split singles; and the 'Fabulous empty! Records' found the perfect marriage to prove that point.
From the days (1992) when Seattle meant something in the world of music. Just.

Mudhoney - You Stupid Asshole
Gas Huffer - Knife Manual
Gas Huffer - Firebug
Mudhoney - March to Fuzz

Excellent 12" vinyl rip @320kbs
Huff some Mud here

Lost another post due to objections by the DMCA.
I'm not sure who the copyright of the product actually belongs to; not only is it from 1973, but it was never an official product in the first place, so I'm not really sure what the objection is?
Anyway, as a consequence, The Wailers are no longer in the building; so I hope you all managed to get a copy of that wonderful, apparently 'copyrighted' bootleg.

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Don't Panic! Don't Panic!

Total lack of Teutonic bands here; so to rectify, here's something representing the German contingent: my favourite from the so-called Krautrock canon.

Of all the bands to have been working out of Germany at the end of the sixties and into the seventies, Amon Duul II were the band who dragged the older decade screaming into the new.
Jefferson Airplane, Big Brother, Floyd (at their artiest) are all evident in their sound; but the zeitgeist collided, creating a new beast; one that was inspired by Hawkwind and Gong, as well as compatriots Neu!.

With its Rodney Matthews' artwork depicting invasion, the band's identity could not easily be forgotten.
Thirty years later London acquiesced - but man, those accents...!

Amon Duul II - Live in London (1973)

Archangels Thunderbird
Eye Shaking King
Soap Shop Rock
Syntelman's March of the Roaring Seventies
a) Pull Down Your Mask
b) Prayer to the Silence
c) Telephonecomplex
a) Restless-Transistor Child-Landing in a Ditch
b) Dehypnotized Toothpaste
c) A Short Step at the Transylvanian Brain Surgery
Race From Here to Your Ears
a) Little Tornados
b) Riding on a Cloud
c) Paralized Paradise

Decent vinyl rip @320kbs
erhalten Sie hier

Sunday, 9 October 2011

War to Go-Go

Wartime was a project created by Henry Rollins and bass player and all-round maestro Andrew Weiss.
Initially slated, as it didn't quite meet expectations.

Go-go funk, drilling drum machine patter, extraordinary samples, much electronic whatnot, and to top it all a Grateful Dead cover, was not what those who dug Rollins necessarily wanted.
Personally, I always loved it. Perfect while driving.

Weiss plays like a testosterone charged Bootsy Collins; Rollins sounds extraordinarily camp.
Together they sound like they're having the time of their life.

It's the best thing Rollins did outside of Black Flag.

Its time has come.
Its time is now.
It's War-Time!

Wartime - Fast Food For Thought (1990)

Right to Life
The Whole Truth
Franklin's Tower

Excellent cassette rip @320kbs
It's Wartime here

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Duffed Up

Jeff Duff is big in Australia.
He is known in Britain mainly for this album recorded back in 79.

A real hodge-podge of an album this, made up of genre subversion and genre homage, with much borrowing and intertextuality (for those with good memories, the track 'Give Me Back Me Brain' was released as a single, and did manage to penetrate the UK Top 100 for a bit).

Duff lived in London for a decade, and it obviously rubbed off.
Punk was the zeitgeist, and it suited Duff's flamboyant persona; his delivery adopted a curiously hybridized Antipodean cockney: kind of Norman Gunston meets Steve Marriott.

Described by some as the Australian Bowie - the comparison is obvious - and where Bowie drew inspiration from the Theatre of Noh, Duff was influenced by the more accessible elements of musical theatre: on occasion he allowed himself to sound more like Anthony Newley than Bowie ever dared.

For those who are interested, it features Mike Howlett on bass but not production, that was down to Duffo, and pretty damn crazy it is.
It makes you wonder while listening to this, as to whether Tim Smith (Cardiacs) had ever heard Duffo, as it's well on its way to becoming Pronk Rock.

Punk left a legacy that was soon realized, and the legion of so-called New Wave artists were inspired to forge and discover new ways of expressing themselves.
No more so than Jeff Duff.

Jeff Duff - Duffo (1979)

Tower of Madness
Chelsea Cowgirls
Duff Record
Record Jerk
Guillotine Quickstep
Duffo (I'm a Genius)
Give Me Back Me Brain
(We're All) Charabancing
I'm Not Really Here
Rise in Your Levis
Duff Odyssey
Dejame Joder Tu Mente
The Final Brain

Decent vinyl rip @320kbs
Get Duffed up here