Thursday, 23 June 2016

Mac Bits....


I loved this when it came out. I would have only been like 8 but it got played to death on my regional radio station 3MA at the time when I lived in Buronga. Of course I wouldn't have realised the Stevie Nicks connection. I think I actually only learnt that a year or two back!


Love this one.



This was on a hits compilation when I was like 10. I wouldn't have realised who he was until at least 5 years later. I remember my sister thinking he was a bit of alright. I dunno though he's put on a few pounds and isn't as cool as he was during the Rumours/Tusk era or even circa The Dance. Is this a good tune? I have no idea.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

In Love With These Times: My Life With Flying Nun Records


Finally a book on Flying Nun written by the guy who started the label. Haven't read it yet. Here's a podcast from the other day with the author and a bunch of old film clips. Can't help but think this might be quite boring though like that podcast. How sycophantic is that interviewer as well? Bruce Russell once hinted that Flying Nun just happened to be in the right place at the right time and their signings weren't necessarily based on aesthetics but just whatever bands existed on the south island and other parts of NZ at the time. This was further demonstrated in the late 80s when, after Flying Nun did some major label deal, loads of the better acts started getting their work rejected. Anyway I hope it's good....I wonder if the Axemen will get a mention?

I kind of liked it when you knew very little about Flying Nun. In the 80s I reckon there were only like 5 videos that ever got played on Rage. You'd see a small news article on The Clean or the Verlaines in RAM in the 80s plus the occasional review or bit on The Clean or The Chills in NME and Melody Maker. In Clinton Walkers 1983 book The Next Thing which was about the current state of Australian rock there was was like 2 paragraphs mentioning The Clean with speculation that perhaps there was something cool going on over there in the land of the long white cloud. Finding a Flying Nun record was like discovering treasure. Now all that fabulous mystique has gone and we're way too over informed more and more each day. I miss the mystery. I don't wanna know how much a Bats LP cost or how many copies they manufactured. It was all about these peculiarly beautiful tunes that were lost in a parallel time and universe. New Zealand seemed so mysterious then even though it's just a short flight from East Coast Australia.












Robot/Copy - Plastics


1979 B side


A side
Released on Rough Trade.

Monday, 16 May 2016

The Dadacomputer

Again & Again &...

Whilst moving house recently a printed out image of the cover to this tape came out of one of my boxes. I'd printed it out a couple of years ago as I thought it was an incredible piece of pop art as previously mentioned. I'd only seen the cover and heard one of their tunes back then but a few months after that original post I found a cd in a second hand record shop in Melbourne. It was a little confusing though as it was credited to The Birth Of 5XOD. It was only like $6 so I bought it anyway. When I finally got home and did the interweb research I discovered it indeed was the same album Minimal Wave had reissued. I'd just never heard of 5XOD (or Five Times Of Dust) but I soon discovered they'd released 4 tapes in the early 80s and contained members Mark Philips and Robert Lawrence who were the original band Dadacomputer. Confused? Anyway it wasn't until blog Die or DIY? put up a file of 5XOD in 2014 that I ever heard them. Last year Johnny Zchivago of the aforementioned blog put up a whole lot of stuff from Mark Philips, Robert Lawrence and other associates of The Dadacomputer/5XOD and fuck that was like an avalanche of revelation

Getting back to the original Dadacomputer tape from1981, it has since become a cult classic at my home, on the internet, amongst electro fiends and.....er... hipsters and continues to grow in stature by the minute. So much so that a tune from the tape has been included on the 4 CD compilation of UK electronic music from 1975 -1984 Close To The Noise Floor. In fact it's the first track on that collection, as if the compiler was trying to make a statement about the merits of the band. There's also a tune from 5XOD included as well. Anyway The Dadacomputer tape is a classic of it's ilk. The primitive melodic electronics are like an unholy union created in the interzone of Computer World and 20 Jazz Funk Greats except it is fabulously unique. Which makes that description kind of deceptive. The contents range from computer-y disco to proto-house to trippy journeys into sound to minimal pre-IDM through to the just plain weird/normal. The Dadacomputer are neglected alien space babies lost inside el cheapo computers from 1981. On the surface it seems sonically rudimentary but on closer inspection it is perhaps sophisticated. Had enough paradoxes, oxymorons, confusion etc? Well I'll stop there.

Eventually I'll do a post on Map 7 which is an epic 10 tape series by Map (ie. Mark Philips 1/2 of The Dadacomputer) from 1981 because it is awesome.


Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Blog Stagnation


I will explain in this little post the reasons for the continuous interruptions to transmissions of my blog suffice to say health problems and a David Toop style dry patch have played roles in this. Didn't Toop retire from The Wire because he couldn't write about or listen to music anymore? Since last November there's probably been only 7 or 8 days where I've wanted to listen to music. This has made writing my blog a bit hard as it's primarily music based. Culture is a funny old thing, when you are really ill it ceases to have any meaning whatsoever for me. So in the past at least 7 months I've seen it as trivial and inconsequential. That could be the art of Tracey Enin, Mike Kelley, Christian Marclay or whoever to music like Miles Davis, Love, The Fall, Omni Trio or Young Thug to beloved movies like Bring The Head Of Alfredo Garcia, Don't Look Now, King Of New York etc. I don't want to be disengaged by the things I admire artistically and time will tell if the passion can make a return. I mean I'm pretty much done with movies, particularly those of the last 20 or so years but also retroactively such as films I once admired as a younger person. I cannot imagine sitting through a Hal Hartley film now (or at any time in the last 10 years) but I once rated him very highly. So anything could happen with regards to me and culture high or low (like there's any distinction in my brain with regard to that anyway) in the future.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

RIP


Had the 7" of the above back in the day but fuck I should have bought the 12" as it's way better and still so good.





One of Prince's great gifts to the world was his songwriting, producing and playing with women. In the case of the above Vanity 6 tune he even gets to be a woman in the song. He wasn't going to be pinned downed by society's sexual conventions. I was going to write a long personal post about sexuality, hating aspects of my own gender etc. with reference to Morrissey, Robert Forster, Michael Hutchence and of course Prince but I thought fuck it the past is the past. I didn't want to write a self therapy session. Don't get me started on Therapy! What a load of shit. Anyway I didn't need to write it as there's a terrific article by Simon on Prince, Gender & Music here.

Thursday, 24 March 2016

What's On The Hi-Fi - 2016 - Part 1


Pearsall Presents - Beyond Ecstatic: Hardcore Goes Jungle.
Another excellent mix from Pearsall from SonicRampage. These are tunes from 94/95 at the intersection of hardcore and jungle. I didn't really know what to expect from this mix as it all seemed a bit recalcitrant and probably not something I would have dug back in 95 but it's a bewdy and I think he achieves his goal. I suppose you can decide for yourself. Tunes from Ratty, House Crew, Essence Of Aura, DJ Seduction etc. Many of these are lesser known tracks by these well known artists, at least by me anyway. Pearsall describes Beyond Ecstatic as
'Jungle from hardcore producers, jungle released on hardcore labels, jungle remixes of hardcore tunes …'


Pearsall Presents - Truly Dread: A No U Turn Crew Special. 
This is another classic mix from early Feb that's on the Tech-Step tip and it doesn't disappoint either. We've got the cream of the Tech-Step crop here Nico, DJ Trace, Optical, Ed Rush, Dom etc. Get bent darkness points here(via EnergyFlash). An hour and a half of 90s gold.

Friday, 18 March 2016

Bass Bits Winds Up But...

God I could on forever. Don't get me started Peter Hook, Tina Weymouth, The Contortions, Gang of Four, The Fall, The Moodists, ESG, The Slits, Ian Rilen, The Pop Group, 70s reggae, PIL, liquid Liquid, Joseph K, Can, every band from the 60s, Michael Henderson, Bootsy fuckin Collins, every soul/funk band from USA in the 70s, Paul McCartney, Fire Engines, Minutemen, Jon Entwhistle, Died Pretty, Pete Wells, Gary Gary Beers, Mark Ferrie, James Freud, Steve Hanley, Andy Rourke, Bruce Lose/Will Shatter, Debbie Googe, Grant McLennan, Steve Kilbey, Kim Deal........somebody stop me.

I wrote this bit about bass players in July 2012. Now I wonder if they've all been covered. I've noticed some omissions though ie. Well I missed the Meat Puppets and all of 80s New Zealand but did Kim Gordon, John Frenett (Moonshake/Laika), the dude in Les Rallizes Denudes, Paul Raven etc. get mentioned in the Bass Bits celebration?


 Honey and Heat is a mesmerising off kilter urban dub tune with see-sawing samples. The samples here are meticulously crafted and create an entirely unique peculiarity. 


Red River could be a Moonshake tune with it's squalling sax, tense noisy guitar shapes, claustrophobic minimal bass and tumbling out of control beats

* Words on Laika taken from me bit here.


Paul Raven plays the bass here with great vigour...a bit like a 60s/Noo Wave guitar style with that chopping of the strings thang. I like this song but I also think it's kinda funny....the seriousness of it all. No mistaking that 80s vibe though. Did Killing Joke make it to the stadiums? Probably only as a support act I'd say.



The sound of late 80s Australian indy psych pop bass. Beautifully melodic and swirling. There's even a break at the 3.08 mark, nice. What's not to like? Always thought it was the dude Mark Lock who was the bass player on all Died Pretty's recordings up to1988 but discogs tells me it's Steve Clarke who took over bass duties in 1989 from whence this tune came.



Classic Flying Nun bass from Robert Scott in 1981! Written by Peter Gutteridge (RIP), later of Snapper.



How could I forget this one? Not played by Kim Deal who'd moved onto guitar but by Joesephine Wiggs. Her name's rather apt here as she fully wigs out here.
                                         

GOOD(idea) TRIBUTE




David Barbe does an incredible impersonation of Kim Deal here. Sugar fully admitted this was their homage to The Pixies. Very bloody faithful. 

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Loveless - My Bloody Valentine

Tim's Ultra Rough Guide To Rock - Part VI


After my previous post on Debbie Googe I thought I'd put up this old bit I wrote on on Loveless.

MY BLOODY VALENTINE - LOVELESS [1991]
Really do I need to spill another word onto a page about the merits of this LP? This recording is one of the most pillaged albums in rock’s history. The Jesus & Mary Chain laid down the blueprint via Phil Spector, The Beach Boys, The Velvet Underground, The Ramones, Dr. Mix & The Remix, Aeroplane Runways and more. Dinosaur Jr., Husker Du and Sonic Youth added the extra flavour and My Bloody Valentine made noise rock at its most beautiful, blurry, melodic, disorientating and come on I have to say it, BLISSED OUT (er..thanks Mr Reynolds). Kevin Shields provided his considerably unique guitar talents along with Belinda Butcher. They together did their extraordinary girl/boy vocal thing. The rhythm section was none too shabby either with the aforementioned Deb Googe on her heavy, dubby and sometimes pummelling bass. Colm O'Ciosoig provided the drums as well as occasional sampling/production/engineering duties. It all began to come together in 1988 with the release of the You Made Me Realise EP and Feed Me With Your Kiss followed by the brilliant LP Isn’t Anything. My Bloody Valentine were on an incredible roll that turned into an avalanche with 1990’s Glider EP & 1991’s Tremolo EP followed by Loveless! Sonic Youth’s Daydream Nation may have taken rock to its furthest reaches but Loveless took it beyond the universe and even into un-rock regions ie. ambient and ultra vague dance-rock. This was future rock’s cherry on top. We thought ongoing sonic exploration of rock was to continue but this was it. Loveless has now become an almost melancholy sonic document, like modernist Russian architecture that’s now in ruins, because it was never bettered. Don’t let that get you down though because this is a hell of a peak for rock’s innovation to go out on. Here come the cliches. Loveless was hazy sweet languidity with a noisy and chaotic undercurrent played with frenzied and laconic enthusiasm. Like the band’s name suggested a conundrum was at work here where apathy and hysteria were used to describe the same song. Did I say deliriously indolent? No? Well I have now. What about listless exhilaration? One tends to forget this record also fucking rocked as well as swimming in oceans of intoxicating euphoria, sometimes all at once. Oh yeah, Loveless is also pop music at its finest. Ecstatic aural pleasure at its Zenith.




Someone once commented 'Why didn't they do a whole side of the sort of stuff like Touched and the in between track hazy ambient gear?' That would have been great wouldn't it?


Best opening tune to an LP ever?

That's a good game: Best opening songs to albums. Simon should rally everyone for that can of worms.

* My original review taken from the HC Website.