Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Texas Rock Bottom - Rangers



What the hell is going on here?

Only just realised Texas Rock Bottom was out yesterday and have listened to it non stop for 36 hours. The album was originally released in August last year but has recently been reissued with a couple of bonus tracks. A vague familiarity makes this is an instantly appealing album. There's always been something a bit deja vu about their sound. We've got singing on most of these tunes(!) and what sound like tributes to The Meat Puppets and Sonic Youth(!?). Funnily enough two hours previous to discovering this at bandcamp I was thinking 'Why hasn't anyone used those acid fried demos of Up On The Sun as a blueprint for starting something new?' This album is not quite that but...actually come to think of it Zombies (Night) from Rangers 2011 LP Pan Am Stories had that sort of vibe as do several of the songs here.

Even though the production is more stripped back than usual, Texas Rock Bottom is still trippy and wonderfully evocative. These recordings evoke relentless sunshine, daydreaming on smoggy freeways, misty suburban landscapes, vapour trail skies and bucolic snapshots. However it's the exploration of internal terrain that seems to be the (un)focus here. Joe Knight has hit a purple patch writing some insidiously stellar songs that capture a state of malaise. The catchy The Dreams I've Had This Week is the best pop song in several years. I haven't said the words lost, melancholy or hazy yet, surely that's mandatory for any sort of discussion about Rangers. On Max Heart Rate it's hard not to think he's being sarcastic when he sings he's 'feeling overjoyed' over a blissful yet dejected backing track. Rangers have never been so world weary or regretful but they're revelling in it with insouciance. Un-named ambiguous and conflicting emotions are all over this album. This is Mr Knight's best work since 2010's Suburban Tours and might possibly be even better!


Monday, 27 March 2017

Sun Sun Sun - Jakki

SPACE DEBRIS GOES TO THE DISCO - PART 7



Walter Gibbons does an insane uncredited mix here. This is gloriously strange, weirder than anything I've heard from the outsider music cannon!

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Only You - Steve Monite

SPACE DEBRIS GOES TO THE DISCO IN LAGOS



Thanks to the great Soundway Records compilation Doin It In Lagos I got to hear this afro disco boogie gem last year and was totally floored. This needs to be pumped loud through your sound system. That bass is wicked and that melody....sweet. Who is Steve Monite? As someone says in the comments 'You can't put out the boogie!'

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Track In A (Nebraska Nights) - Cat Mother & The All Night News Boys

SPACE DEBRIS GOES TO THE PROTO-DISCO


I have no idea what genre this Hendrix produced track is. Here's some funky tribal organ-led prog fusion proto disco or something like that. The break at the 6.50 mark is well worth the wait.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

It Should Have Been You - Gwen Guthrie

SPACE DEBRIS GOES TO THE DISCO - PART 3


This fabulous track turns into a fucking killer 4.05 in.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Church Tour Dates 81


More Church posters, flyers and ads. These intrigue me. The first one mentions the university I went to, Swinburne Institute, but I assume that would have been the Hawthorn campus not the one I went to which was in Prahran. Although The Prahran Institute gets mentioned in the next poster so I presume Swinburne amalgamated with them at some point...hey I was at primary school in a country town during this time. I'm not sure which Royal Hotel that is but I lived for many years about 3 doors down from the one in Punt Road, Richmond. It's now a titty bar but I think in the 80s it may have been a rock venue as Richmond was pretty hip back then but there was also a Royal Hotel in Essendon so it might have been that one. The Cricketers Arms which was a block away from the Royal is where Men At Work did their early gigs. Bombay Rock was a dodgy Oz Rock/disco in Sydney Road, Brunswick. I'm pretty sure all your favorite Melbourne criminals used to hang out there before they had books, movies and tv shows made about them. By the time I moved to Melbourne in 91 (funnily enough living in Brunswick by 92) it had closed down due to a fire but it was still there for years afterwards. There's a few scenes in the classic film Death In Brunswick shot at this legendary rock venue. Every famous Australian rock band from the 80s and late 70 did their time there ie. Sherbert, Skyhooks, INXS, Chisel, Aussie Crawl, Angels, The Models and even The Boys Next Door.


Eon FM and Big M present an under 18s show at Preston Town Hall....wow. Eon FM only started in 1980 and later became 3MMM in 1988. The Jump Club was maybe what became known as The Club which was situated in Smith St, Collingwood. The Club was still going strong into the 90s and I lost many a brain cell there. Oh and saw a heap of bands there like Kim Salmon & The Surrealists, Grant McLennan, Underground Lovers, Not Drowning Waving, The Cruel Sea, The Mavis's, Powder Monkeys and er...Frente. Then there was the late disco which used to be open till like 6 or 7 am. My head hurts just thinking about it.



This ad for the London Tavern made me laugh because in 1992 I did a Skillshare hospitality course just up the street from this pub. On one of the days we went and learnt about beer and beer kegs at this Caulfield Hotel, which was by then a very not cool or rockin old peoples bar. They were getting some big names there though Mike Rudd, Ayres Rock and of course The Church. The weekday acts however are all in the Who the fuck were they? Hall Of Fame.


Me and the Mrs used to often spend the day down at beautiful Sandringham Beach and call into the bottle shop of what I presume was this hotel. I used to say 'This place was legendary in the old days, I'm pretty sure this was where Australian Crawl got started.' Emma probably just ignored me. By the 2000s it was a sports bar and bistro but it still looked like it had a lot of potential. I always intended on having dinner there but never did. They had the big 1981 names Russell Morris, The Bushwhackers, Lil Jonny Farnham and Aussie Crawl. There is not much on the interweb about the history of the Commodore so I'm not 100% its the same place I think it is but.....

Outstanding (Instrumental) - Gap Band

SPACE DEBRIS GOES TO THE DISCO AGAIN


Ooh very nice. That beat is something else innit? It's so elusive,  just when you think you've got it, it vanishes into thin air.

Magic Fly - Space

SPACE DEBRIS GOES TO THE FRENCH DISCOTHEQUE


This is new to me today, I mean it's only like 40 years old. Incredible Cosmic French Disco. Wow. Dunno about the clip though. I can't work out if its from back in the day or not. It kind of fades out with a minute to go and then there's a whole different bit of footage. Anyway tuuuune! I got through the post without even mentioning you know who.......

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Ritz - Cockney Rebel



Simon Reynolds really got me excited about Cockney Rebel's first 2 LPs when he wrote about them in his fabulous 2016 book Shock & Awe. I'd only ever heard Cockney Rebel's Make Me Smile single previously plus there was a cover version that was a hit here in Australia in the late 80s. I'm thinking that was by Nick Barker or someone of that ilk. Anyway the two records The Human Menagerie from 1973 and 1974's The Psychomodo preceded that 1975 number one smash hit. Listening to Psychomodo today I was struck by how much the tune Ritz reminded me of The Church. Further into the track I realised 'Wait a minute, The Church covered this!' The Church's version of Ritz appeared on their 1996 album Magician Among The Spirits which I haven't heard in almost 20 years. So there's weird connections everywhere considering my last 3 posts.



This isn't as glammy or idiosyncratic as anything off the those first couple of LPs probably due to the fact Harley had sacked the original band. He also plays guitar here which is odd because one of the unique things about that first incarnation of Cockney Rebel was that they were guitar-less.

This clip makes me wanna get a bowler hat. How much would that wind everybody up?



So this was slated to appear on Box Of Birds which was their very own Pin Ups/Kicking Against The Pricks type of album ie. an LP of cover versions that were influential on the embryonic Church. But Box Of Birds came out a couple of years after Magician Among The Spirits. Confused? Well it gets more puzzling because Ritz has been removed from subsequent reissues of Magician Among The Spirits. There must be a story here, I just don't know what it is. Maybe I should tweet SK.

Friday, 10 March 2017

The Church Concert Ads 85-86







More curious Church paraphernalia. The Venetians I recall were a bloody awful sort of record company version of a rock group. I don't know who The Promise were but I guess they didn't live up to their promise. Ups & Downs were a very good bunch of Church acolytes, at that point anyway. The Crystal Set of course contained Steve's brother Russell. Despite being rather talented Russ could never really emerge from his brother's formidable shadow. How about the supports at the Marquee? Who the fuck were they? Good to see students and pensioners getting a cheaper ticket though. Can you imagine that now? Church guitarist Marty Wilson-Piper ended up in a later line up of All About Eve. Cactus World News and Twenty Flight Rockers went on to join the 'Who the fuck were they?' hall of fame.

The Church Heyday Tour











These pictures were taken in the US on 25/4/86 at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces. I love the 2 I've blown up extra large and this last one.

Church Posters 82-84










I've recently started using pintrest as a therapeutic tool, in conjunction with anti-anxiety medication, for my often constant state of high anxiety . My blog has been plagued by inactivity over the last couple of years and physical illness, depression and anxiety have been the cause. Under the influence of anti-anxiety medication your brain wilts and cohesive thought processes are disabled. It's not like getting stoned or wasted on painkillers where you become relaxed and thoughts can become excitingly intensified, you just kinda go blank. It's not particularly fun but it relieves the harsh and all consuming existential horror for a while. Pintrest can have a fabulously calming affect. Before pintrest sorting out shelves of books, records and cds was my usual mo as well as organising playlists in i-tunes and other such ocd things. Anyway my Steve Kilbey and The Church board I created on pintrest is my latest. These posters I've put here are from that board and they're weird, funny and quite curious. The videodisco at The Maroubra Seals club sounds great. What about Slug Lord for a name for a promotions company? This is just the tip of the iceberg, I might post some more. Perhaps there's a way to link my pintrest to my blog, I dunno. This might be boring to some but it's helped me calm down immensely.