Category Archives: Progressive Rock

Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl)

This album demonstrates both the considerable strengths and limitations of the typical Philly Soul product. Practically ignored during their short lifetime, the Only Ones released three studio albums between and Though they were lumped in with the punk movement because of leader Peter Perrett's bleak view of life, the Only Ones were actually a traditional hard-rock combo that worshipped at the sonic altars of Crazy Horse and the Velvet Underground.

Drummer Mike Kelley had in fact served time in the early '70s heavy metal outfit Spooky Tooth, and all of the Only Ones had paid their dues for years in unsuccessful bands on the pub circuit. Perrett isn't a strong melodicist, but he is an interesting lyricist who knows what a hook and chorus are, and guitarist John Perry is very good at tossing off layers of Neil Young-influenced grunge.

Luckily the band behind this croaking sub-Dylanesque singer kicks up some meat'n'potatoes classic rock'n'roll, keeping the music from sinking into a manic-depressive murk. When Perrett tackles a creeping ballad, though, the depressive murk still winds up listenable, and often creepily compelling. The Only Ones were seen as too traditional to make much of an impact during the late '70s punk-obsessed scene, but in retrospect their music has held up better than many of their puke'n'pins contemporaries, because it has much more emotional depth.

And Paul Westerberg of the Replacements who covered the Only Ones' greatest song, the power-pop classic "Another Girl, Another Planet" certainly seemed to have learned a thing or two about pouring your miserable depressed guts all over the place the way Perrett does. This collection of BBC radio sessions works as an alternate-version "greatest hits" and is the only Only Ones CD available in the States the rest are out of printwhich is a shame.

I always thought the line in "Another Girl, Another Planet" was "I looked killed but I don't care about it," but it turns out on closer examination to be "I look cool but I don't care about it," - much more banal and conventional. I like my version better. A good argument could be made for Cleveland, OH as the birthplace of '70s punk rock, as its post-Velvets underground scene produced a plethora of abrasively uncommercial, forward-thinking bands -- or so rumor has it, since I've never heard but a handful of them.

And that gets to why Cleveland never got its due as the heartland home of the New Wave: it was too far from the glare of the mainstream media, before the underground network of independent labels and college radio stations existed to support uncommercial bands working outside of the major-label mainstream of pop. Pere Ubu, a band responsible for some of the first releases on an American independent label Hearthaneventually scored a major-label contract, which is the reason their archives along with fellow hometown punks the Dead Boys have indeed been available to average consumers such as myself - unlike, say, Rocket From the Tombs and the Electric Eels, to name two legendary-but-obscure bands from Cleveland's celebrated mid-'70s punk underground.

This release collects in one place Pere Ubu's groundbreaking early singles and several otherwise unavailable-on-album B-sides, and it's a necessary exhumation, since early Pere Ubu are one of those bands like the Velvet Underground one should give at least one listen to even if one doesn't like the music. Like a lot of groundbreaking music - Captain Beefheart is a good analogy - Pere Ubu are very difficult to absorb at first, and at least to my ears fall into the category of "interesting" more than "pleasurable".

Their reportoire of synth blips, lead singer Crocus Behemoth's aka David Thomas cartoonish warble, song structures that barely seem to cohere or often even reach a chorus, brief blasts of post-Hendrix guitar rising to the fore and then fading quickly out at seeming random, dinky rhythms, and anti-pop murk aren't for everyone, that's for sure.

Pere Ubu could only have come from one place at one time, a decaying urban center of the Midwestern Rustbelt in the '70s. Their sound is that of formerly bright, shiny efficient machines sputtering and squawking futilely as the factories collapse into a rustheap; Allen Ravenstine's synthesizer treatments, the band's most distinctive sonic feature, are Kraftwerk's autobahn littered with the corpses of burnt-out, discarded machinery, Eno's treatments filtered through the raw sewage of Lake Erie.

As no Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl) band I'm aware of has even attempted, Pere Ubu capture the ugliness of decaying industrial cities in a post-industrial age, when all of the factory jobs that once drove the economy have moved to the third world and you're left with a soaring crime rate, unemployment, pollution, and a lot of ugly, empty metal buildings. Which isn't to say this collection isn't inconsistent - it is, after all, a compilation containing B-sides, and one can easily see why novelties such as "The Book Is On The Table," a spoken word piece didn't graduate to albums.

Such oppressive music would sound positively suicidal if sung by a like-minded singer, but David Thomas' wacky warbling adds a much-needed dose of comic humanism to early Pere Ubu - Thomas' voice can't help but color everything he sings on with a touch of the vaudeville surreal.

I mean, Thomas sings like Bugs Bunny! The same can't be said for such attempted forays into happy pop territory as "Heaven," which indicates that perhaps pursuing a lighter post-Laughner direction would prove fatal to the band. OK, I found the Pere Ubu review. I think it's one of the greatest albums ever recorded.

The synth player on that track is not Ravenstine, who split temporarily, but I think Dave Taylor. And you might be amused to learn that the actual personalities of both Mission of Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl) and from much less observation, granted Gang of Four were degrees opposite of what they projected in their Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl) and lyrics. Burma interviews were among the most consistently funny in the history of rock journalism, and they were fairly delightful to hang out with.

Go4 could drink and party till dawn with nary a Marxist word spoken. Actually makes a certain kind of sense, when you think about it. Consisting of tracks recorded in andPere Ubu's debut album proves that deep in the rustbelt heartland a group of oddball eccentrics were busy creating post-punk before punk proper had barely begun to make waves.

Some of the dinky Pong rhythms suggest New Wave, but "New Wave" suggests bright and poppy to me, the last things one could ever accuse Ubu of -- here come the cold jets. The album cover of the proletarian ballerina dancing against a backdrop of smokestack factories captures Ubu's aesthetic in a single image: absurdist whimsy in the face of the industrial city's slow post-industrial collapse. Ubu were either the artiest garage band or most conventionally rocking proto-industrial in the musical sense band of the past few decades; listening to the opening track, "Non-Alignment Pact," Cold War boy-meets-girl angstI'm not so much surprised by the painful whistle of feedback that opens the tune, as to how conventional it sounds as a Chuck Berry-derived garage rocker, with a great slip'n'slide rhythm going up and down the chorus.

But that first impression is somewhat misleading, as it's easily the most normal and straightforward slice of rock; the title track similarly sounds fairly straightforward until it breaks down into Ubu's idea of what the modern dance constitutes: a sound collage of a busy urban street -- more interesting than your typical rock'n'roll "insert guitar solo after chorus" tack, yes? The strongest musical track, "Street Waves," not so coincidentally combines the experimental art-rock and amateurish garage-rock tendencies of Ubu in equal doses.

The stop-start angry ranting "Life Stinks," courtesty departed from Ubu and this earthly vale guitarist Peter Laughner sounds out of place, since the rest of the material is more angst-ridden than actively pissed-off. The angst reaches its apex with Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl) album closer, a demented attempt at warped reggae, the definitively dark and sarcastic, "Humor Me," -- "it's just a joke, mon!

Aside from Thomas, whose strange vocals can't help but dominate any song he sings, the main star is synth deconstructionist Allen Ravenstine, whose imitations of Three-Mile Island meltdown are definitely ahead of their time, making him one of the '70s most creative employers of the synthesizer. In sum, an amatuerish garage band attempting ahead-of-its-time, Kraut-rock influenced post-industrial art-punk -- Devo may have had the hits, but any student of '70s Ohio electronic rock will realize which one was the by far superior band.

Critics consider this the band's masterpiece, but I can't seem to get into it - too much goofy experimentation and not enough solid songcraft. The band goes entirely New Wave Electronic on this LP, mixing the rock guitar down in the mix and placing Ravenstine's colorful collapsing synth tones front and center.

That is, when the music isn't being dominated by Thomas' yelping, which has progressed from curious oddity to obnoxious novelty - on the first track he flip-flops his arms like a horny penguin. The melodies consist mostly of either sea chanties or dance party chants, which is to say not particularly strong.

On the plus side, I can't honestly give this album a bad grade because it's extremely innovative - perhaps more innovative than the debut, even - and the sound sculpted textures can be very interesting to dig into.

The problem, though, is that digging into texture is work - where the previous album maintained a fine balance of avant-garde artiness and rocking accessibility, this album tips the balance overboard into weirdness.

It's a very difficult album to get into, but after struggling to enjoy this music after 7 or 8 listens, I give up - I'm never going to get more than mild intellectual stimulation not aesthetic pleasure. But boy, that Ravenstine just keeps getting better all the time - love those sandpaper swooshes.

By all means, make The Modern Dance your first venture in Pere Ubu-land; diving into this album first would be a serious mistake, since it's so inaccessible it might turn you off the band forever. However, I hear some of their later albums are even more inaccessible, hard as that is to believe. Anyone looking for the chaotic thrashy metallic punk of the Stooges better leave their expectations at the door: Iggy's Bowie-masterminded comeback sounds totally removed from those wild days of youth, adopting an almost fatherly tone of an elder bemusedly smirking from the sidelines at the decadence surrounding him, rather than reveling in it as the instigator.

An older and wiser Iggy might seem like a bizarre curiosity to contemplate and not all that accurate -- it's not as if he still didn't Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl) coke on a daily basis at the timebut what other choice did the man have except to slow down or die, after spending the first half of the decade mutilating himself onstage and briefly consigned to a mental institution.

I'm not convinced on the evidence that Iggy possesses unstoppable talent, aside from his powerful voice -- his nihilistic energy made the Stooges a one of a kind experience, but his craftsmanship so mediocre that "craftsmanship" and Iggy in the same sentence provokes laughter never matched his inspiration.

So when he stopped being crazy well, relative to his Stooges daysWhole Wide World - Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World / Semaphore Signals (Vinyl) had nothing to fall back on -- as evidenced by the string of crap records he released post-Bowie. And make no doubt about it, Iggy's comeback owes everything to Bowie: the Thin White Duke wrote the music to all but two of the songs here, which accounts for the album's glammy electronic sound -- more full-bodied and traditional than the work Bowie was doing with Eno in the same Berlin studios, but unmistakably the handwork of Ziggy.

However, Iggy deserves credit for writing all of the lyrics, and for establishing a brooding, sinister tone that Bowie himself couldn't achieve; the point is, the album is a collaborative sense in the best sense of the word, with both Bowie and Iggy complementing each other.

The title track makes the rounds these days due its memorable inclusion over the opening credits of Trainspottingand the next three songs are all even better.

The crucial cut, however, comes next: "The Passenger," the other non-Bowie composed song, a jangly, jauntily sinister ballad in which Iggy watches the city at night from his taxi windows, cackling at its "ripped backside" with the debauchery of Nero surveying Rome. If only the second side matched the first, this album would amount to one of the decade's greatest discs, but the romantic "Tonight," excessive Bowie melodrama, but it does show off Pop's baritone croon to stunning effect"Success" aka "Lust for Life," with different lyrics"Turn Blue," more melodrama"Neighborhood Threat," terrific intro leading into so-so songand "Fall in Love With Me," great lyrics; if only it had a melody range from fairly good to not-so-good.

Who would've thought the Peanut Butter anti-god would learn to settle for competent professionalism? Answers the question: can Iggy produce a competent and professionally entertaining record without the help of Bowie?

Watching The Detectives. My Old Man. Police Car. Yankee Wheels. Back To The Schooldays. I Love My Label. Mary Provost. What A Waste. I Think We're Alone Now. Jocko Homo. Semaphore Signals. I'll Get By In Pittsburgh. Lucky Number. Solitary Confinement. The Expelled - Government Policy. On this date inThe Expelled released their debut single, " Government Policy ".

It was backed by " Make It Alone ". The single reached the 15 spot on the U. The Leeds, U. The Leeds, England punk band broke up in with no further releases though they did record additional songs which went unreleased. On this date inComateens released their self-titled debut full-length album.

The New York City new wave band disbanded in after three albums. Wikipedia: Comateens Official Website: comateens. It was backed by " Lichtenstein Girl ". A Music War. On this date inthe soundtrack to Urgh! A Music War was released. The album had 27 songs but did not include all of the performances in the movie. Instead, it only included 27 handpicked songs that would fit on a double album.

Wikipedia: Urgh! A Music War Blogload: Urgh! A Music War - soundtrack - www. John O'Neill of The Undertones turns 52 today. When the lead singer's notoriety became even bigger than the band, Wayne's name was prominently out front in the band's name. There were no singles released from the album. Wikipedia: Cockney Rejects Official Website: cockneyrejects. Disrupters - Shelters For The Rich.

It was backed by " Animal Farm ". The B side appeared on their debut album, Unrehearsed Wrongs. The A side did not. The Norwich, England punk band disbanded in with two albums. Government Issue - Legless Bull. It was a ten song, 7-inch record. Government Issue disbanded in It was backed by " Mind Bending Cutie Doll ". Jo Callis and Simon Templar formed Shake. The Rezillos have re-formed since. Wikipedia: The Rezillos Official Website: revillos. Bad Religion. On this date inBad Religion released their self-titled debut EP.

The Los Angeles punk band still records and performs. In fact, Greg Hetson is still a part of Circle Jerks too. Wikipedia: Bad Religion Official Website: badreligion. Patrik Fitzgerald - Tonight EP. It contained the songs, " Tonight ", " Mrs. And Mrs. None of the tracks were released as singles nor did any appear on a regular album. He enlisted musicians to assist as necessary. Wikipedia: Patrik Fitzgerald Myspace: myspace. The Satellites - Urbane Gorilla. On this date inThe Satellites released their debut single, " Urbane Gorilla ".

It was backed by " High Rise Hillbillys ". The London punk band released four singles and one album by That was the end of their recordings. Blogload: The Satellites - Urbane Gorilla - 7 inch both sides - asfm.

Devo - Come Back Jonee. On this date inDevo released their fifth single, " Come Back Jonee ". Und diesmal gar nicht mehr lustig! Black Flag touren in England. Ihr Zusammenspiel ist noch perfekter — Black Flag sind eine professionelle Punkband geworden. Black Flag haben eine Wahnsinns-Power. Sie spielen immer noch fast alle anderen an die Wand. Record Store Day, the annual countrywide celebration of independent stores that still sell vinyl records, in which young people born after vinyl ceased to be a dominant medium wait for the chance to buy limited-edition recordings that would be utterly worthless outside of social circles where people wait in line on Record Store Day.

Kelli Mayo ist 16 und Peyton Bighorse 20 Jahre alt. Die beiden machen seit sieben Jahren zusammen Musik und haben gerade ihr.

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La Guerre De 14-18, Assez Super - Mino (2) - Assez Super (Vinyl), La Perla - Various - Pasion Loca (CD), Variation IX. Schnell Und Stürmisch - Wiener Philharmoniker - 150 Jahre • 150th Anniversary • 150, Dogri Folklore, De Vent Et De Poussière (Goldfield - Nevada) - Boulbar - Motor Hotel (CD, Album), Nothings Changed - Chris Isaak - Wicked Game (Cassette), Batholith, Il Venait DAvoir Dix Huit Ans - Dalida - LIncomparable Dalida (Cassette), The Song Is Ended - The George Mitchell Minstrels - Sing 54 Irving Berlin Songs (Vinyl, LP), Crazy Like A Fox - Motörhead - Overnight Sensation (Vinyl, LP, Album), Limbus - Mutate (2) - No One In The Mirror (File, MP3), Since You Won My Heart - Smokey Robinson And The Miracles - Going To A Go-Go (Vinyl, LP, Album), Freestyle - Cut Killer - Freestyle 3 - 1 Son 2 Rue (Cassette), Its A Big Daddy Thing - Big Daddy Kane - Its A Big Daddy Thing (Cassette, Album)

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