Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Down with the kids, me!

It turns out I'm actually down with the kids. That is my fave song of 2012 is by Skrillex who is my (nearly 2 year old)  niece's favourite artist. This one goes out to Harry!

Monday, 29 October 2012

Wu-Tang Clan/Trace & Nico

*The whole point of mentioning Ol' Dirty Bastard the other day was the Wu-Tang Clan connection with a track off the Torque record. The song in question Damn Son by Trace & Nico contains a sample from Raekwon's Only Built For Cuban Linx LP....er which I forgot to mention. I thought yeah I know that sample but it took me a while to pinpoint it. I thought it was ODB but it wasn't then I put on Only Built For Cuban Linx and there it was. A funny bit to sample really. Whatever works I suppose. Here's the two tracks in question!

 
 
 
How could I resist?
Wu Gambinos
Fave track off that record!
 

Friday, 26 October 2012

friday night

 
EPIC

 
He really comes across as an arsehole doesn't he? Which if memory serves he was in interviews at the time. You know the usual misogyny and homophobia. That never stopped me likin Public Enemy, ODB or Snoop though. It's this video I find hard to watch. Great song, it can't be denied.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

I'm Livin' In The 90s

Still in 90s zones, I pulled out ODB's debut record the other day. How fuckin' funny is he? Scary & hilarious! He died right? I must check that out. I'm pretty sure he'd already been shot by the time Return To The 36 Chambers had been recorded. He's one of a kind The Old Dirty Bastard. He had me laughing out loud on the tram the other day. Anyone who can make me smile whilst commuting is ok in my book and I do have a book.


Psychotically Hilarious!


The word commute always makes me think of Lipstick Traces, Greil Marcus's peculiar opus on Johnny Rotten's voice and everything that could have possibly been connected to it. Commuting often in its loneliness and isolation reveals to me that I am part of a huge pulsating industrial monolith that doesn't necessarily need me and can spit me out at any moment without a care. Whoah!, that got heavy all of a sudden.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

RE: Straight Edge/Torque & any old crap

*Ian MacKaye of Minor Threat/Fugazi & Dego & Mac of 4Hero were both at the forefront of Hardcore lineages albeit very different ones but funny that they were both straight edge. I didn't even realise when I was writing that the other day. Also both had a Mac in the group. Can I somehow get a Fleetwood Mac connection here as well? I fuckin' doubt it as they were the antitheses of straight edge.....er....all 3 had great rhythm sections. If you can call what 4Hero had a rhythm section?

**After purchasing Torque, the compilation on No U Turn from 97, the other day I realised that in fact I knew most of those tracks either from the radio, clubs, a friend of mine-some kind of osmosis anyway and hey me likey very much.

***Discussions among a few different people recently has ended up in this question: What ever happened to R & B? That lineage seems to have come to a halt doncha think?

****What about Hip Hop? A lost cause or what?

*****Indie Rock? Any life left in that? I doubt it.

******What about Exotic-Retro Psych/Funk/Rock and its Hybrids? Those compilations seem to be arriving less & less. I think I've only bought 2 this year. One from Iran and one from West Africa.

*******Is there anything out there apart from Skrillex & K-Pop?

Sunday, 21 October 2012

RE: Techstep

To listen or not to listen?

I got off the hardcore train before techstep it's true. There may be some good stuff I've missed and I'm lookin' at that No U Turn comp Torque thinkin 'Go on give it a go!' Anyway I couldn't get into stuff that followed either Speed Garage, 2 step, Grime and only really liked a couple of things in the Dubstep universe. I didn't hate Big Beat but that was hardly part of that hardcore lineage. I kept half an ear on the experimental side of things in the electronic world but even Mouse On Mars were makin crap by 2001. I didn't really get back into underground electronic music in a big way until Ghostbox and it's Hautological friends arrived in the mid 00s. Then the strange Hypnagogic stuff caught my ear and the new Kosmiche/Ambient skool. I don't really think I'll be delving into old school tracks of 2 step and Grime when their time comes back around though.

RE: Interstellar Martians

Kowalski liked both types of speed.

*When I said in that previous post that Jungle "was for hopped up martians going interstellar!" I meant that's who it sounded like it was for. The reality was it was for druggy young urban jungle dwellers going nowhere except oblivion in their brains. This thought reminds of the film Vanishing Point and its subtext of a need for acceleration, to pioneer, to hunt etc. So Kowalski has all this instinctual energy but nowhere for it to go. The worlds been mapped out, we've even gone into space, all our food is at the supermarket etc. Did any women make Jungle? So Kowalski fills his desires with the speed (meth & going fast) and chaos of the road and being chased across America by the authorities. He makes the road his home. With jungle, the makers of and their followers wander a similar path. They enjoy the endless horizon that awaits in the music and their minds (usually drug addled ones) to escape the urban jungle's drudgery of daily life at least for a little while.....er.....discuss. Have your essays on my desk by Friday kids.



 
 
Two more classics from the Reinforced label for speeding into endless chaotic wide open vistas and dark futures. Having said all that stuff above it is interesting to note 4Hero were as straight edge as Fugazi's Ian Mackaye. Weird huh?

RE: The Beach Boys & The Rolling Stones

*Don't get me wrong about the Beach Boys. Many LPs that followed after Pet Sounds are classics in my book and I do have a book. What I meant was the general rock crits concencuss of Pet Sounds. I read that book Heroes & Villians way back in the late 80s and a couple of times since. The author didn't rate anything after that at all. So I was quite suprised when I tracked down the latter LPs in the 90s to discover some underated classics. Sunflower and Surf's Up are just as good in my opinion. Not far behind would be Wild Honey, 20/20 and Friends.


 
 

**Sure The Stones had a run of classics leading up to Exile and some good ones after like Some Girls and Tatoo You. Anyway you know what I'm getting at doncha? 

Saturday, 20 October 2012

The Sopranos/Nostalgia for the future

Funny that I mentioned Tindersticks in that last post. I've just started rewatching The Sopranos from season one and I'm gonna watch the lot. Anyhoo in an excellent episode towards the end of the first season  called Isabella The Tindersticks song Tiny Tears appears during one of Tony's meltdowns. I was surprised and thought 'yeah! they had some great songs and were a bit of a funny band.' I'm intending on pulling those first couple of records out of the closet maybe. The first one and that live one were pretty good stuff. Were they Boz Scaggs fans? Their other influences were pretty obvious though Hazlewood, Van Zant, Scott Walker, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, The Triffids etc. It was funny having this British group with all these Australian influences. I guess Gallon Drunk were a bit like that as well, you know sounded a bit like they could have been from Melbourne.
Good tunes for panic
attacks on the toilet!

The Dreamy Isabella.
                                                                                                                                                             
Been loving the music on The Sopranos. There were so many good songs used and put to good use as well. Kasey Chambers turns up on one episode where Ralphie becomes a captain with the song...er...The Captain. Her voice may sometimes be grating but there is no denying her talents as a formidable songwriter.

Anyway I'm still obsessed with the whole hardcore/darkside/jungle/ambient jungle etc.90s timeline thing. I must admit though I can't bring myself to listen to possibly my favourite record of the 90s Tricky's Maxinquaye. I think this was pretty much the only record I listened to in 1995. In Energy Flash's Trip Hop chapter Simon Reynolds waxes lyrical about the record and with good reason, it's fucking brilliant. It is a dark record though, dark times personally too and perhaps I just played it to death. It was a bit of a shame though that his debut was his Pet Sounds or Exile On Main St...... er ..... meaning his peak, his Masterpiece, his piece de resistance. Then again who cares it's one of the all time great records!

MAXINQUAYE
Best LP of the 90s?
After tracking down a bloody lot of the great tracks from the hardcore etc. era I'm now onto AOJ. Album orientated jungle. One of the few other records I did listen to in 95 apart from Maxinquaye was Omni Trio's The Deepest Cut and 4Hero's Parallel Universe (that may have been 94). Also getting back into A Guy Called Gerald, Spring Hill Jack and finally tracking down that Jacob's Optical Stairway LP which I never heard until the other day. I guess that's because jungle's twistedness was starting to be straightened out and I didn't go much further with it after that. I couldn't get into Roni Size/Repazeant and all that. Maybe I missed some things by getting off the train before techstep. Now I'm supposed to mention MC Esher (no he wasn't a rapper) and how jungle parallels the impossibilities, confusion and illusions that he created. Kodwo Eshun summed it all up nicely with the often quoted "rhythmic psychedelia." K-Punk says "temporal delirium" What more can I add. This was in no way nostalgic this music (ironically talking about it now is), it was speeding into the future with no map or coordinates and with unprecedented vigour. This was twisted, elastic, sharp, slimy & shapeshifting music for hopped up Martians going interstellar.


Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Old stuff better than new stuff?


Maria Minerva has a new LP Will Happiness Find Me?

There are all sorts of new records I would usually be salivating to to listen to by Maria Minerva, Emeralds & Sun Araw plus a new side by Oneohtrix Point Never and a new tape by Mark McGuire. I mean they are there waiting to be listened to but since reading Energy Flash I'm in some kind of British 90-95 timezone wormhole that has attached to my brain and will not allow anything else to get past my ears. This is no bad thing as I'm re/discovering exciting music from exciting musical times. It does however make me wonder if what's happening now is really quite inconsequential. Has that whole underground of above mentioned artists, James Ferarro, No Not Fun records et al. run its course? If hipsterhouse is the only thing on the musical horizon god help us. It could just be that I have read two books recently by Owen Hatherley & Simon Reynolds on 90s music so I've just naturally gone back and checked out the music. When the future of music looks barren I do usually go into undiscovered (by me) retro-zones though. I have musical zones waiting for such times like Musique Concrete, 20th century composition, Jazz, Early R & B, Disco, 70s AOR, Dancehall, Aboriginal Country, Doo Wop, ECM Records, Gamelin, NWOBHM, Anything from Finland, Country Soul  and general things I've just missed etc. etc. Worringly on Maria Minerva's new LP she sings on Perpetual Motion Machine "this goes out to the lovers of deep house" Forgive me if I'm wrong but whenever the term deep house first appeared (I dunno 90-91?) didn't that mean shit house. How much deeper/shittier has it got in the following 20 years god only knows.

Emeralds-Just To Feel Anything
Been waitin' 2 years for this but it remains unplayed!
Anyway I'm on this trip- The lineage (that would be a very crooked one) of 'Ardcore to Darkside to Ambient Jungle. Wow the times were moving then! A sort of hyper progression of culture that blasted into the future with the speed of light which was also reflected back into the music. I've been making ultimate mixtapes of hardcore, darkside and yesterday started one on ambient jungle. Had to dig out old Omni Trio, Foul Play and 4Hero tunes. A long time since I've listened to these records and they're great. This mix is already at nearly 3 hours. Someone on the blogosphere mentioned recently the Macro Dub Infection compilation released by Virgin in '95. I was getting massively into dub man in the early 90s like King Tubby, Scientist, Prince Jammy, Scratch, Augustus Pablo, Keith Hudson, Blood & Fire Records et al. This modern dub influenced collection on Virgin was great but out of the 4 tracks I could think of off the top of my head the other day (before I found it in my closet) 3 were jungle tracks. Omni Trio's The Half Cut, 4Hero's The Paranormal In 4 Form and a track by Spring Heel Jack. That just goes to show how outstanding jungle music was/is! There were only 3 jungle tracks on the compilation! I do have to mention the other track is one of the most astounding modern dub reggae tunes heard to this day. It was by Irration Steppas called Irration Steppas V Dennis Rootical (never found any of their records though). Anyway I remember playing Omni Trio on student radio and fuck me they were made for FM radio. Other tracks I recall from this one off night included The Beach Boys, Booker T and the MGs, My Bloody Valentine, Laika, The Beastie Boys and er....The Tindersticks. I have often thought my blog was a little too eclectic but clearly this is nothing new for me so I couldn't do it any other way.

Omni Trio strike more gold!

One of the greatest ambient jungle
 tunes. Which one???

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Energy Flash/Hauntology

Here is a quote from page 164 of Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave & Dance Culture written by Simon Reynolds and originally published in 1998 but this is a 2012 edition.

'Imagine the theme music for a 50s Government film about Britain's new garden cities: serene, symmetrical, euphonious, evoking the socially engineered for a post war New Order.'

Here Mr Reynolds was referring to some of the music that Aphex Twin was making early in his career. I wonder if Boards Of Canada were reading this but didn't they already exist? or if the GhostBox crew were taking notes because it sounds like Simon Reynolds invented Hauntology 6 or 7 years ahead of its time, well the theory and subtext to it anyway. When I first heard BOC I thought shite they remind me a little of Seefeel & Aphex Twin, which to me was in no way a bad thing! I wonder if Simon is aware of this portentous quoted passage or realises his complicity in the entire idea/genre? I know he is a big fan of the whole thing and has scribbled many words on the topic via his blog and in an article for The Wire magazine many moons ago.








Word Up!


    

Cameo-Word Up
Best song ever?

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Rock Da House


Rock Da House
Beatmasters & Cookie Crew
1987


Goin' Back To Cali
LL Cool J


ICE-T
COLORS

Back in the day all these tracks were exciting, you didn't know what was going to happen next! It was fresh. How excitement! This wasn't indie rock or hair-metal. They all still sound great today. I can't believe that Beatmasters & Cookie Crew track still stands up. These tunes remind me of ABC TV's Saturday morning show The Factory.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Darkside

Been on a mission/obsession in the last few days to make the most awesome Darkside mixtape ever. I think I've made it. It's funny what's available via the Internet and i-tunes. Everything you can imagine is able to be listened to via the youtubes but not every track ever is available for download legally or illegally. Been enjoying these two comps on Reinforced: The Definition Of Hardcore & Callin For Reinforcements. Been diggin wicked tracks by Kaotic Chemistry, Hyper On Experience, Doc Scott, Rufige Cru, Satin Storm, Origin Unknown, Boogie Times Tribe, Nebula II, Acen, DJ Ecel, Neuromancer etc as well. These are all from 90 - 93 an era of depleted funds and a lack of knowledge about said tracks. You would hear them but you wouldn't know what it was or who it was by. There was a jungle specialist record shop in Prahran in Melbourne but who could afford expensive imported 12'ers back then? Now the minute a track is played on/at a show the Internet will tell you pretty much straight away what it was. Anyway it was all about living in the moment. Having said that it's great to finally track down some of this Gold I'd forgotten about/thought I didn't care for anymore.


Contains two 4Hero classics as well as Nasty Habits
Dark Angel and Nebula II's X-Plore H Core.


DJ Excel-Just when You Thought It Was Safe
This epic is as absurd as prog rock!


Acen-Trip II The Moon Part 2
I love it when that Bond sample kicks in at around 3.30!

This has the 4Hero classics Mr Kirk's Nightmare &
Cookin' Up Yer Brain.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Panic Attack


Remarc & Lewi Cifer
Ricky


Johnny Jungle
Johnny
These two are apparently part of the mini genre of Darkside (which was a sub-genre of 'ardcore) called panic attack songs along with Subnation's Scottie. The best genre ever? I wonder if there are any others out there to add to this three song genre? I hope so! (these two are new to me)

Freaky Shit!!!


After writing that last post where I mentioned Lime Lizard Magazine which I'd totally forgotten otherwise it would have been mentioned in the post about The Wire, NME & MM I wrote a while back I went into my bedroom. On the floor lay one solitary cassette and (pictured above) it just happened to be a compilation tape given away free with a 1993 copy of Lime Lizard. Freaky man!!! I mean obviously a box of tapes had been knocked over under the bed but still that's some freaky shit right there! Truman's Water, Polvo, Shudder To Think - I loved those groups. I wonder what I'd make of them now? Maybe I should give it a listen.

Paul goes mental on the bass
* Music highlight of the week was listening to Abbey Road remastered in the Mrs car. Mind blowing shit man. Paul's crazy bass, Ringo's large drumming and some synthesizers I'd never really noticed before. We had to take the long way home so we could listen to the whole thing. Also I was listening to Blue Oyster Cult on the plane back from Sydney and laughed to myself  'Wouldn't this be funny if it was the last thing I ever listened to?' That particular thought tickled me for some reason. It still makes me smile.

Funny LP to die to.




Energy Flash


Origin Unknown
Valley Of The Shadows
Didn't know this track until 5 minutes ago. Started reading Simon Reynolds Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music & Dance Culture (2012 Edition) today and I'm up to about page 188 at this very moment where the above track is mentioned. If I'd read it back in 98 I wouldn't have been able to just go on youtube to check out the tracks I didn't know. I am in the future. Funny I've read all his books but I've somehow managed to avoid this one for 14 years, better late than never and quite timely too as I'm in some kind of electronic 90s timewarp. After chapter 6 I have a new lease of love for old faves like Autechre, Black Dog, Aphex Twin et al. But there are gaps baby (ie. pg.188) and youtube is a brilliant resource. Somewhere in the book he mentioned Lime Lizard magazine which I had totally forgotten about. It was a magazine as opposed to a paper and was a pretty good alternative to the NME around 91/92. I think it came out bi-monthly. Anyway it had some top writers and was the first place I read about Thomas Koner, Disco Inferno, Ice, Ultramarine and others.


Bay-B-Kane
Hello Darkness
I recall this or did that sample get recycled a fair bit?