In 1978 the Angry Samoans formed in Van Nuys CA. Gregg Turner (Guitar) and Metal Mike (vocals) used to be in Vom, who had the super great "I'm In Love With Your Mom" on the Saturday Night Pogo compilation on Rhino Records (Rhino 003 ! ) earlier that year. This single has 2 cuts from a 1978 6-song demo tape which has never before been issued. "I'm in Love with Your Mom" and "Too Animalistic" are here from that tape, sounding A-OK to me; not at all sounding like they were were recorded in a tin shed, as they might have. The tape also included a so-so, much too slow version of "Right side Of My Mind" which went on to become an Angry Samoans classic. Just last week in the Gull Buy I was comparing Boston's Unnatural Axe to the Angry Samoans, now here they are in person (or at least on wax) to represent themselves in turn.
February 8, 2000
Dylan Group is Dylan Christy & Adam Pierce, who lives in Connetticut,and who is involved in many projects and the Bubble Core label as well. The original mix of this 12" would sound good played in the company of the Lobi Traore Pole remix. It uses a sound that I can't quite place (electronics, or sampled and clipped tone fron something else?) as it's center, and puts a live drum beat lazily on top of it, allowing it to just find it's own place and run on for its (pleasant) duration.
The Fridge remix wakens up the piece a lot. The drum work becomes much more busy, and melodica rings into the picture, along with what sounds like a thin piece of aluminum induced to make sound by shaking it slightly (like radio program studios used to use to make thunder in old radio days). Bass starts in, and then sax. the Fridge remix is much more of a real song that the original. The first few listens I liked the Fridge mix better, but at the time of writing this I think I prefer the somewhat miniman original mix. I guess the point is that both sides are good!
I recall Jorg Winzer (Mind the Gap) calling this "the most difficult Piao! Release ever". That it is. Geiger Counter were initially described to me as Black Sabbath meets Tortoise. That description is not as nonsense as you would believe. Geiger Counter have 2 long instrumentals on this 12". They have structure, manuevres, and time signature changes worthy of a Tortoise or Ui, but then they break into bar power chord heaviness tht rumbles with bottom. The balancing edge between these two worlds of sound are what make Geiger Counter unique and interesting, if (indeed) difficult.
Laika have 2 new releases teasing us for the release of their new LP "Good Looking Blues". In addition to this 12" they have released a 7" (also on too Pure) for a song from the LP called "Uneasy". Rough Trade describes that song on it's update as "like a gentle Portishead or Sneaker Pimps". I think Laika are better than either of those bands. In fact, I think Laika are in a class of their own with their fresh uptight cool sound. On this 12" in "Black Cat Bone", which is unique to this 12", and BadTimes" which is from the new LP. Both songs have great lyrics. They tell stories. You want to listen. "BadTimes" tells the tale of a new virus that does many bad things you'll enjoy listening to as you start to realize it is just a state of mind in our world she is talking about. Her descriptions read like a Neal Stephenson vignette. You want to listen.
I've not heard any of Lobi Traore's work, but on this French 12" two of his songs get the royal treatment by two remixers. Frikiyawa is a label produced by Cobalt Ltd. Japan's Chari Chari (Kaoru Inoue & Konsuke Shiina) have an 8:52 go at "Koroduga", with tribal singing that in entrancingly incorporated into their beat. Berlin's Stefan Bekte remixes "Sayo" (5:25) under his Pole identity into a completely fascinating piece with submerged parts and a harmonica signature that sounds completely unique in the company of what I hear coming out these days. It is for the Pole remix that I bought this 12" for us. Once you hear it, I'm pretty sure you'll return for it too.
Michael Head might be popular now as Shack, but anyone listening to underground music in the 80's knows that his glory days were as the leader of The Pale Fountains. This 14 song compilation (the last song #13 has a hidden cover of Burt Bacharach's 'Walk On By' at the end of it) is a collection of rare and previously unreleased recordings. Most tracks appear on CD for the first time, seven cuts are released here for the first time ever- including the superb BBS sessions. The disc is accompanied by a 24 page booklet with lots of rare photographs, extensive linernotes, and an introduction by Konishi Yahuharu of Pizzicato Five. At their best The Pale Fountains predated the Siesta Records and El Records sound with such classics as their singles "Just a Girl" (#1 on this CD) and "There's Always Something On My Mind" (#2 on this CD). At their worst they overused the trumpet a bit, in the way that I used to hate sax players for doing in bands they were in (with the exception of the X-Ray Spex, who had the least annoying sax player ever). Overplaying of trumpet aside, the Pale Fountains sound stands up to todays standards and even sounds fresh on several of the cuts. Marina has good taste in what it releases; this CD is no exception. Now if I could only find the Jazzateers "I Shot The President" CD which Marina has released!
Sigur Ros having been making waves in all the cooler press. They are from Iceland, and are notable for their male vocalist who can sing in a falsetto like Robin Guthrie of the Cocteau Twins, and who makes up his own language as well as singing in his native tongue. The sound is a cool and expansive as Iceland itself, frequently compared to that of Godspeed! You Black Emperor, with piano and strings. I had seen this 12" in Twisted Village before I had read any of the press on them, then I did not see the record anywhere. When a copy was restocked at that store I snatched it up to hear what the fuss is about, and to get this into the hands of WZBC where it would find it's natural audience. I think this 12" is the highest profile release Fat Cat has put out yet, and I'm pretty sure that it will become a sought after item as their fanbase grows and they put out more releases. Meanwhile, it's a great 12" with 3 songs: 2 of them quite epic and one a short (in comparison to the other 2) somewhat experimental percussive instrumental.
In this split 7" George is an acoustic guitar / female vocal lament with the hiss of cassette recording at one level (the rhythym machine), and the crystal clear recording of the vocal, organ, backing vocals, and guitar on the other; making for an unsettling listen that would sound right at home for any fan of the Tindersticks, I would think. For me though, the prize is clearly Southall Riot. I really really like their song, and will look for more stuff by them. They sound like an Elephant 6 band if Elephant 6 bands used early My Bloody Valentine instead of Beach Boys/Beatles as a starting point. Really Boss! I want to hear it again and again.
The third single off the 'Guerilla' CD. This song is maybe the most rocking song off the record, and is a daring choice as a single with it's under 2 minute length. The Super Furry Animals have really fulfilled all the potential many of us saw years ago when they were a minor point in Gorky Zygotic Mynci's shadow, seemingly riding that band's success as "the other band from Wales". Now the Furries success has eclipsed Gorkies folkish charms with their embrace of pop and technology, and with their visually astounding partnership with artist Pete Fowler, who has single handedly re-defined the Furries image through his graphical representations. To me the real treat of this single though is the 3:24 second song, "Missunderstanding (sic)". It is just plain a great song, and has refreshed my interest in Super Furry Animals, as the 'Guerilla' CD has run through my mind for many months now and has long passed its peak interest for me. The third and final song of this EP,"Colorblind" (3:24) is bright, upbeat, and has 'sha la las' galore, but it doesn't sink half as deep as "Missunderstanding" for me.