Alotta people axe me (they axe me) ‘Hey goober, when’s that next paper issue of 200LBU coming out?’ Soon after delivering a sound blow to their windpipe, I understand they have a point. The last one came out over a year ago, and the one before that came out…well…let’s not get into that. I guess I really have no reason for not putting one out except that I find it painfully hard to paste words to a page and take them to be printed. It’s much easier to let the kind people at Blastitude or whatever simply throw them up on the internet and be done with it. But once in awhile, I do get that yearning to deliver something that is all my own. For the times when I do get that pang, I decided to do this dummy blog thing.
I hope you ‘enjoy’--TR
HERE’S A FEW REVIEWS THAT ARE/WERE SUPPOSED TO BE IN 200LBU#5. FOR NOW, THEY’RE HERE…GET USED TO IT
VEGAS MARTYRS - ’Choking Doberman’ (Kitty Play, 7”)
When ole apple pie face told me of his new ’Punk’ band, I thought it was real cute. The cassette they released was a decent blast of soot, but I still wasn’t on board. But then I saw them live (about as violent a band I’m gonna get in this time of geezerdom) and heard this 7” and I’m a total card carrying member Pops. Both sides sound like some kinda Psychedelic black metal wet dream scrapped right outta Donna Rettman’s pink sweatpants. The way the sucker looks drives it right there into legendville as well.
Between this single and the more rockin’ parts of ’Black Vase’, I could swear Dominick (the Mike Judge of noise) is dipping into Richard Dunn’s weed stash, but I don’t think that Dom’s edge will go dull EVER.
MAJOR CONFLICT - ‘Sounds Like 1983’ (Mad At The World, CD)
I recall at least one long lost high school collector buddy of mine scoring the Major Conflict 7” back in the day. I remember being real excited to hear it since it was something of a missing link in our early NYHC record collecting, but the actual sound of the thing left us cold. Both time and awesome liner notes from Wendy Guillotine hasn’t changed my mind. The actual tracks from the 7”still sound pretty lackluster considering who’s involved (ex-Urban Waste dude!) and the unreleased tracks come off too anthem like and mid-tempo for me to care. Brings to mind the L.A. Youth Brigade…not a good memory, really. There are some flashes of sweaty thrashing mania recorded at A7 that are pretty cool to hear, but overall, this disc just makes me anxious to hear this label’s upcoming Misguided discography CD. And if that’s doesn’t say something to ya, forget I said anything at all.
ROGER NICHOLS AND THE SMALL CIRCLE OF FRIENDS (Rev-Ola, CD)
I’ve been getting alotta sideways comments these days about my recent obsession with all sounds lush and foppy. Having hipsters over for a meet ‘n’ greet and blaring something like this certainly separates the guff from the tuff in a heartbeat and splits a room apart in the same way your fave dirt quaffed noiser would at a martini shindig. Is this the new frontier? Now that I’ve hit upon people who don’t bellyache over hearing Rutto and David Stoughton in the same evening. Is this the stuff that will drive them ’round the bend? Hmm…gimme a few nights and a few Steel Reserves and I’ll give you one dandy of an essay on the subject. For now, I’d rather skip through the daises (I.e.--crushed 40 bottles) to this gemstone and forget my dead end existence. Roger Nichols wrote alotta tunes with that infamous dwarf Paul Williams (check the Holy Mackerel review) plus he even wrote ‘We Only Just Begun’ for The Carpenters. If that don’t tell you of the cat’s magnitude, go suck several eggs. But before Karen’s fingers started to smell of rotten beef stew, Rog did up this sunshine pop masterpiece. Is this disc goofy? Oh, you betcha! Even the cornball Beatles covers make me grit my teeth, and I’ve been known to play ‘Kites Are Fun’ on a loop while fondling my crystal unicorn collection. But their version of ‘Snow Queen’ is like listening to angels sing while eating cookies and getting a hand job. Pure bliss. Rev-Ola has done it again in the re-issue department. Between this and the Chrysalis re-issue, I just might plotz. And you’d like that, wouldn’t you?
FRICARA PACCHU - ‘Waydom’ (Lal Lal Lal, cassette)
Maniac’s Dream kinda strikes me as the real mouth frothers of the Avarus camp, with no concern for bongos or bamboo. But now one of the dudes from the band puts out this tape and it sounds like he’s smoking Jesus’ toenails and I don’t know what the fuck to do. High and spaced, this sounds like if I decided to re-record ‘Space Ritual’ in my living room using my coffee table as a drum set. Completely beautiful. Black and white psychedelic? Yeah…I guess there’s such a thing.
WATERSPORTS - s/t (White Tapes, cassette)
S/t (White Tapes, CDR)
Yeah…ya know…in this day and age so much dense black goo, it’s nice someone ain’t afraid to move up front and whisper so confidently. And this Brooklyn love triangle duo (?) is just the cat/kitten to do so. The cassette is a barely there affair that starts off sounding like a recording of your grand mama watching a infomercial in the next room. But then something of a simple beat rises out of the nowhere and turns the silence into a subtle urban dervish. Nice. Just be sure not to ‘rock’ this while the upstairs neighbors blast the latest Eminem. It just won’t be the same…trust me. The CDR is a super bite sized (eight minutes or so) collaboration with Richard Dreyfuss look-a-like Aaron Rosenblum and the fidelity is kicked up a notch, as well as the energy level. A rain soaked Greenpoint street provides an exquisite ambience while Russ, Leay and Aaron kick up a mish mashed faux ethnic hoedown that references everything from Habibyya, Bruce Palmer, Sun City Girls and any other blanks your collector ass wants to fill in here. All I gotta say is more releases, more live outings and more drunken house parties on Grandparents Avenue will make my demeanor go form ‘ashy’ to ‘classy’ in a heartbeat, so let’s give the red and the black our full support…cool?
ESPERS - ‘The Weed Tree’ (Locust Sound)
The glut of late 60’s/early 70’s U.K. folk rock inspired units that have sprouted up in the past few years is enough to drive anyone to their Cockney Rejects single collection. But I have found Philadelphia’s Espers to be one of the few that do it right and pleasing to the ear. Sure, it’s studied, but so are you , ya college graduating bastard, so don’t give me no guff. This somewhat short release (EP? Mini-LP?) is made up of covers from various artists these beardos have found inspiration in and I certainly can’t complain about their choices or the way they are both attacked and loved. The ‘expected’ ones (Nico, Hurley and a couple trad Brit folk tunes) are exquisite as anticipated, but it’s the more oddball selections they’ve chosen that have left me reeling. Their interpretation of the Durutti Column’s ’Tomorrow’ is something I could have never fathomed in all my stoned out fantasies. The way Greg Weeks’ and Meg Bairds’ voices lace together makes the mind drift to pleasant thoughts of sunsets, sunrises and maybe the occasional chocodile. It might as well be a cover of something from one of your fave obscure U.K. folk records, and that am ain’t no bad thing. Equally fucked and exhilarating is their cover of Blue Oyster Cult’s ‘Flaming Telepaths’ which hold on to the tracks’ bizarre mix of melancholy and out-and-out ROCKNESS, but throws a curve in turning into a noisy, uncontrollable rock jam towards the end. Apparently bigger things are ahead for these cats (A Drag City LP, a tour with Stereolab) and I can’t say they don’t deserve it. When you have stood through your one hundred and fiftieth ‘ensemble’ strumming acoustic guitars and braiding their armpit hair, you can’t help but be thankful for groups like Espers. And you better be thankful, buster.
AFTERNOON PENIS - ‘In The Evening’ (Heavy Tapes)
Afternoon Penis is the solo side guise for Nate Nelson, the human metronome/dangler for that constantly swelling duo known as Mouthus. This strictly cassette affair finds Nathaniel lost in his own rhythm like some retarded version of the late, lamented Chris Penn character in ‘Footloose’. It’s the eternal heartbeat for a lost generation. Did you ever wish their could be a fifth and sixth side of ‘Tusk’? Wish no more my fine feathered, fat assed friend...
WARMER MILKS - ‘Penetration Initials’ (Mountain, CDR)
I kept thinking about this dry wood. I didn’t know it was supposed to look like that. A slight shift of air. A quick stab of darkness shot through the green. That was the last time I remembered that moldy smell in the air and those really high knee socks. After that moment, everything just sank in shit and didn’t stop. Even now, I can’t feel anything but this slight chill that rises up my back from time to time. Sometimes I wonder what their motivation was. Well, to be honest, I think I know exactly what they’re motivations were. But then there it was, confusing and enlightening in it’s way. I remember my sisters’ boyfriend saying ‘Holy Shit!’ in a jock stoner voice and walking closer. I looked away from the dried wood and saw this fleshy tabletop. He waved me on further into the woods and I had to follow him. But I looked back a few times before I went further down the trail. Clothes were sort of there, not really though. It looked like they just shoved them off where they could and that was that. I didn’t tell anyone what I saw.
I THINK THAT’S ENOUGH FOR NOW. IN THE NEXT FEW DAYS EXPECT REVIEWS OF TWINKLE, GOWN, BLUES CONTROL, INCA ORE, MOUTHUS AND MANY MORE. NOW GO PLAY WITH YOUR WRIST ROCKET…
Oh yeah, most of this stuff is readily available at www.fusetronsound.com