Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Primitive Sound System - Maxwells - Tuesday January 11th

Hello Y'all,
I had the week off between Christmas and New Year's Eve and came across a slew of records I may not have mentioned here. Also included music that Santa left on the turntable for me. The list below is pretty long and hopefully of some use to someone other than myself. Regardless of whether you read it or not I will be spinning most of these tomorrow night at Maxwell's. I didn't get to list a sampling of LPs in my backpack, next week I'll start with the LPs. As always I'll be touching on as many genres as I can possibly weave together with out becoming confused. Hope to see you there.

- pat.


Featuring - Primitive Sound System and the food stylings of el Diablo
Every Tuesday
1039 Washington Street
Hoboken New Jersey
(201) 653-1703

New stuff and stuff I may missed when I first got 'em.
The 45s:
Tom and Jerroo - "€œ(Papa Chew) Do The Boo-Ga-Loo" Part 1 and 2 (Jerry-O Records cat. JO 111)
Heavy Heavy Boo-Ga-Loo with a nice drum break and roll. The ever soulful Mr. Jerry-O strikes again.

The Souljers - "€œChinese Checkers"€ b/w "œPoochum" (Rampart cat. 45-ATE-97)
Both sides have a hand clapping party feel with crowd sounds. The oddly named "Poochum" has a bit more swing in its gate and a thumping drumbeat worthy of any 60's flick dance scene. The dirty horn line at the end tells you that your Mom may not be happy to know this is the sort of place you frequent.

Benny Gordon - "Sugar Mama" Part 1 & 2 (Estill cat. A-1000)
Benny tells us about his lady over a soulful little vamp; almost that Motown sound. Simple, sweet and damn groovy.

The Golden Toadstools - "Silly Savages" b/w "Weeping River" (Minaret cat. MIN-138 (711-296/7))
The one thing I miss most about no longer warming a stool behind the counter at Finyl Vinyl was my Sunday visits from friends. One visitor in particular came box in hand and played me some of the best and rarest 45s Funk had to offer. This is one of those 45s that had me reeling ("Silly Savages"). I know I heard it on a comp and it may well have been a comp I even owned but nothing could compare to the sound buried in those beautiful original grooves (Thanks Mr. F. W.). This song is fast paced and lyrically crazy like The Hombres "Let It All Hang Out." After each listen it is really hard to get the "point" of the song. The one thing that is for sure is this is a funky ass piece o'wax.

Red Holloway - "Gittin' Down (The Churn)" b/w "Hoghead" (RH Records cat. 003)
Red Holloway is somewhat of a master at that blowing session yet he can always swing with the best of 'em. His sound typically that of Bluesy 50's jazz with moments that even border on early Rock ("Monkey Sho' Can Talk"). Who knew this Rockin' sax man could also nail a Funk record and this is a powerhouse of a funk tune at that.

Mosquitoes - The "Fly" (Long version and Short version) (Spear cat. SP-1001)
I got this at the last DC's record swap and for some reason forgot to include it in any list of new finds. The long or short of it is that this is an incredible Boo-Ga-Loo record.

Fred Wesley & The JBs - "Rockin' Funky Watergate" Part 1 (People cat. PE 643)
This a promo copy so all it has is Part 1 in both mono and stereo. I have always loved this tune. I think it is the weird frying pan bells that tap throughout. I consider this an instrumental since I don't feel the sporadic cheers and chanted lyrics don't exactly qualify as vocals. Whatever it is its got such a great feel. Once again Watergate and Nixon get a soulful treatment from James Brown.

Lee Arab "Now" b/w Cedric IM Brooks "The Chicken" (Studio One via Soul Jazz Records cat. SJR 97-7-2)
I guess these are printed up as "promos" for the Soul Jazz comp called "Studio One Funk." Apparently all the cuts on the double LP are unreleased gems from the Studio One vaults; apparently I need a copy of the LP because this single is great. "The Chicken" is almost more a Soul Jazz (the genre not the label) funk tune but that is definitely not a bad thing. "Now" comes on a bit more heavy and has some great horn and guitar interplay followed by a very cool organ vamp. Good stuff.

Harlem River Drive - "I Need You" b/w "Overtime" (Arista Records cat. As 0142 2170/1-S))
This is an odd one. I grabbed this hoping it was Eddie Palmieri's Harlem River Drive. "I Need You" doesn't sound to far off from early SalSoul which oddly doesn't seem to help with whether this "the" Harlem River Drive or not. "Overtime" has a nice Crusaders-esque groove with a touch of Platinum Jazz War; very West Coast. The playing is pretty on but it is hard to say if this has anything to do with Mr. Palmieri. Congas, Electric Piano, etc, who knows for sure?

Castor Pollux & the Soul Department - "Gnaoua" b/w "Afrika Sun" (Tramp Records cat. 1002)
Some new, new shit. This is hard and heavy. Side A has a few touches or African influences with grinding horns, a steady beat and keys groove punctuated by some really nice percussive moments. Side B slows things down a bit; here an electronic manipulation that sounds like someone trying to tune in a radio frequency as well as some flute are added to the mix. I like the dynamics to this a lot. This would work nice as a soundtrack.

J.C. Davis - "A New Day" b/w The Mighty Dogcatchers - "It's Gonna Be A Mess" (Mystery of Soul Patrol cat. MSP 01)
We considered "A New Day" when we were putting together the Vital Organs. I remember one of the big reasons for not picking it was the fact that it was a stereo track. Now that I here it again it really wouldn't have fit with the bunch any way. The track is incredible but has a far more Jazz feel than I remember. "It's Gonna Be a Mess" is a mid-tempo funk number with an extended drum and bass intro. The horns come on like many other tunes of its kind before they give way to the drum and bass again. Most likely this is a boot as it has no credit info anywhere. PAY SOME ONE! it's not that difficult to do people.

The LPs:
Mastodon - "Leviathan" (Relapse Records cat. RR6622)
Mastodon are probably the finest band doing the Hardcore/Metal hybrid. Apparently the majority of these tunes were conceived while the band was on the road. The majority of the record is based around the story of Moby Dick. This is a concept that in the wrong hands could come off like Fred Whatever and Limp Dickless doing a concept album about Peter Pan. There is nothing corny about Mastodon. This is music that can physically crush things.

Isis - "The Mosquito Control" EP (Escape Artists Records cat. EAR 3.3)
The current state rock is a sad one but like Mastodon, Isis, are making it better for some of us. This is an EP from 1998 that I only had on CD preciously. Copies come and go so fast on eBay and else where that it becomes a frustrating experience to try and land one (as is the case with almost all of Isis vinyl). This could be their heaviest outing and again like Mastadon have experimented with the Hardcore/Metal hybrid. Unlike Mastadon Isis can be atmospheric and oft times subtle. Isis records contain looped sounds, samples both vocal and musical inventiveness not usually associated with the genre of Metal.

Isis - "Oceanic Remixes Volume IV" (Robotic Empire cat. robo-39)
The title says it all. Being the Hardcore/Metal/Atmospheric sample ladened band that they are Isis' best LP to date ("Oceanic") spawned this insanely creative series. Each 12" is limited to 2500 copies and contains upwards around three remixes per. Never has a band been so deserved of such a project. Volume IV features Venetian Snares, Destructo Swarbots and Fennesz. Past 12s have featured; The Oktopus (Dalek); Mike Patton; Tim Hecker; JK Broadrick and others. As an interesting note the releases are clear vinyl with extra large labels.

Isis - "Panopticon" (Robotic Empire / Ipecac Recordings cat. )
It was during my quest for this, Isis' most recent record, that I stumbled upon the copy of Mosquito Control EP. Copies of this LP are already selling for over $100. Released in October, vinyl of "Panopticon" has dribbled out in insanely small pressings. Always the student of music and music lover before being a collector I was happy to get a black vinyl copy for $16.99. Easily recognizable as Isis from the first note "Panopticon" does not disappoint. Following in the footsteps of the Remix series these LPs come with extremely small labels for a very odd visual effect.

The Black Keys - "Rubber Factory" (Fat Possum cat. ?)
Believe it or not it doesn't even say Fat Possum ANYWHERE on this LP. That's either the dumbest marketing goof ever or the coolest thing ever. Considering The Black Keys are the coolest band making music I'm guessing the ladder. Covering Beefheart's "Grown So Ugly" and the Kinks "Act Nice and Gentle" are bold moves by a duo but these guys have the chops and style to do the do. It's nice to see they are not afraid of the occasional overdub to help flesh out some of their tunes even if it is as simple as hand claps.

Money Mark - "Demo Or Demolition" EP (Chocolate Industries cat. )
The always original Money Mark nails 6 different moods effortlessly on this new effort. I never seem to tire of Mr. Nishita's music and hopefully he will never tire.

Harold Land - "A new Shade of Blue" (Mainstream cat. MRL 314)
Beautiful Soul/Spiritual Jazz played with Bobby Hutcherson. This is my third LP with this pairing.

Wayne Shorter - "Shorter Moments" (Trip Jazz cat. TLX-5009)
Two LP package of late 50's Wayne Shorter performances.

This weeks picks:
The 45s:
The Moving Sidewalks - "99th Floor" (Mutt Records ("I wouldn't Send A Mutt Out On A Record Like This.") cat. M-1030-A)
This was an early band for Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top fame. This tune is just plain amazing. Garage psyche the way it's supposed to be. Slamming drum and organ intro with that hopping dance beat and tripped out lyrics. "Come on baby, come on and treat me right, Let's go to the 99th Floor..." Oh yeah, screaming harmonica and guitar tie things up nicely at the end. Perfection if there ever was.

The "Noc-A-Bouts" - "Jungle Safari" (United Artists cat. 45-S-116)

The Nu-Trons - "Tension" (Federal cat. 45-12495 (45-F844))
Slow and Low that is the tempo. Fuzzy guitar and what sounds like the biggest ride cymbal on earth kick off this odd stroll. Honkng horn and a walking bass round out the feel. At one point the repetitive groove locks, and not to state the obvious but, the tension builds. The guitar and horn seem to want to battle for attention but no one ever really takes the lead. Spooky good.

Moby Grape - "Omaha" (Columbia cat. 4-44173 (JZSP 118972))
The insane backward beginning of this song gives me a chill down my spine. Great harmony singing over the sped up tempo make me want to run around and jump up and down. In fear of breaking things around me as well as possibly breaking me so I resist. This tune slams its way from opening to end. Listen my friends...

Pretenders - "Tattooed Love Boys" (A Real Record cat. ARE 9)
Last week I played "The Wait" and maybe it was just a perfect time to play it but shit this band was great. Grabbed this one this week and upon listening to it I realize what a fool I am for not playing the hell out of this stuff or at least playing it more often. Great skipping beat with pretty guitar sounds followed by a charging punk drive. Half way through this thing just goes crazy. Skipping, skittering, pausing, squealing and moans. Trust me, go back and listen to this stuff again.

The Pop Group - "She is Beyond Good and Evil" (Radarscope Records cat. ADA 29)
Every-time I listen to this I think how bad most current music is. The Pop Group should have sparked a revolution (along with The Slits and Liquid Liquid). Dubby beats and grooves and strained vocals. Dated in its sound and weirdly fresh all at the same time (I can't even explain that). I hate that I never picked up the LP. I only have 2 of the 45s.

The Feelies - "Original Love" (Stiff Records cat. Buy 65-B)
New Jersey has its moments of genius and The Feelies were definitely one of them. Anton Fiers drumming is beyond compare and as song writers go Million and Mercer certainly do their namesakes justice. "Jangly Guitar Sound" was most likely a trophy passed from The Byrds to the Feelies but these angry art nerds pound out emotionally charged songs that some how result in a smile. "Original Love" can sound at times like "Ghost Riders In The Sky" but all the while it seems to ride the New Wave. I must have seen this band 100 times and I wish I could see them 100 more.

Bobbie Gentry - "Mississippi Delta" (Capitol Records cat. 5950 (45-57421))
Like the B-Side to "I got You Babe" this was one of those rare finds when I one day flipped over "Ode To Billy Joe." Bobbie comes on like the Sista of Tony Joe White with this fine bit of Country Go-Go and her gravelly smoke filled voice. This must be heard to be believed if you only know "Ode to Billy Joe." Bari horn sounds, pounding drums, countrified harmonica and strummed guitar. I have owned the LP a few times over the years but I guess I never felt anything came close to this so I have always let it go. As you can imagine this plays well with Dusty' "Son of A Preacher Man."

Bill Doggett - "Honky Tonk Popcorn" (King 45-6239 (SK13085))
Ouch. This shit is so nasty it will cut you. Ole' Bill Doggett and the JBs just taking the shit out of "Honky Tonk" The Organ on this sounds more like the horn of a "32 Ford as it desperately competes with the Guitar which can only be described then as a Cobra trying to muscle its way by. Both stop short and scare the daylights out of some folks on the corner who timidly scream. Convinced everyone is OK, if not just a little shaken, the Organ and Guitar resume their duel and disappear over the horizon.

Sound Explosion - "40 Acres and A Mule" b/w "Blow Your Mind"
Buzzing guitar cuts the air at the intro of this storming funk number. "Give it up now, Give me more mule, HUH!" The whole thing sounds as if it were recorded in the apartment next door but that is a big part of its appeal. Congas grab the groove and help keep everyone on track before the tune slams back into the chorus and rolls on the verge of out of control. Vocals and horns stab in and out over the music and during pulled back moments giving the song even stronger dynamics. Aggressive and funky is the order of business for the Sound Explosion. The instrumental "Blow Your Head" moves at a more measured pace but retains the aggressively funky groove and even touches on moments of some heavy 70's Rock riffing.

Brown Brothers of Soul - "Cholo" b/w "Poquito Soul" (Specialty cat. 698)
Very few songs sound this good EVERY TIME you play them. "Ese CHOLO!" This slow grooving organ/sax instrumental grinds like no other. It takes great restraint as a player not to bust this flow and these guys are dialed in. At one point they pick it up and the vocalist spits out a few more lines but then they pull it right back without a bump or bruise. Tweaked out sax, thundering congas and swirling organ run you to the end. This is one of those songs I wish I could play for anyone who hasn't heard it.

Once again I am way too tired to go through the LPs.

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