Monthly Archive for January, 2008

“Spread the Groove” by Bohannon

bohannon.jpgWhat else can be said about you after your name is repeatedly shouted out in one of the greatest songs ever recorded? Not much, so I’ll let Hamilton Bohannon speak mostly for himself. I have to admit, I’d listened to and loved the Tom Tom Club’s “Genius of Love” for more than a decade before I bothered to figure out who this guy was. He created some of the tightest and funkiest dance music of the 70s, I my opinion, and was no slouch when it came to album covers either.

From the sleeve to Dance Your Ass Off:

PLAY THIS RECORD LOUD
P.S. Dance Your Ass Off is not used in the sense of profanity.

There’s a signed 8×10 of Bohannon in the basement of Union Hall, a bar in my neighborhood, that I think is there mostly to spotlight his hairdo. I covet it.

Bohannon, “Spread the Groove” from the Dance Your Ass Off LP on Brunswick Records (1975)

Tom Tom Club’s “Genius of Love”:
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“The Man in the Dark Sedan” by Snakefinger

snake.jpgSnakefinger is lauded for his masterful guitar work, but I think his real genius lays in his ideas about percussion. This album, and this track in particular, give you a taste of that.

A frequent collaborator with the Residents, Snakefinger appears on most of their most recognizable recordings, like “Eskimo” and Tunes of Two Cities. He was set to lay down tracks in 1987 on the Residents’ God in 3 Persons album (which ruined my mind forever when I was 13), but he died of a heart attck while performing on stage just before the sessions.

Snakefinger,”The Man in the Dark Sedan,” from the Greener Postures LP on Ralph Records (1980)

“Move and Move” by Mix Blood

mixblood.jpgSaw a great movie called This Is England last night. Posting some sweet early 80s ska because of it. Some of this disc is a little generic sounding, but I really like this jam, probably the cut that got me to lay down $14 Canadian for it. Internets seems to imply it’s kinda valuable. Maybe I should rip the whole thing.

I picked this album up in Toronto on one of my last big record shopping trips, which was sadly in 2005. Haven’t been back to Toronto lately, but I hope all of the vinyl stores are still in tact… there was a surprising variety and volume of great used vinyl.

Mix Blood,”Move and Move” from the Skaville LP on Echo Records (198?)

If you’ve got Netflix, you can watch the movie for free, but only from a Windows PC.

“Baby O Baby” by Martin Rev

rev.jpgMartin Rev is better known as the noisier half of the incredible NYC group Suicide. Though Suicide put out a few additional albums over the years (the latest in 1988), both Rev and partner Alan Vega put out some top-notch (and not-so-top-notch) solo records. The earlier ones are best, I’ve found.

This record is very reminiscent of was Suicide was doing– minimal, droney washes over speady beats– but you can tell Rev is using his freedom to really experiment with the additional synth tools he had at his disposal. It’s really good stuff, I think.

I’d say that the best thing the two ever did was the live Suicide album Zero Hour, which is comprised of two concerts from the late 70s in New York and Berlin.

Martin Rev, “Baby O Baby” from the Martin Rev LP on Infidelity records (1980)

Suicide, “Dream Baby Dream”:
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Relatedly, here’s a great video of Alan Vega’s “Jukebox Babe” from French TV.

“Behavioral Disorders & Therapy” from the Psychology Today Record Series

psy.jpgThese are two exceprts from “Behavior Disorders and Therapy” the strangest disc in the 1972 Psychology Today 4LP set. Each side of this disc is only one band, but anywhere you drop the needle is golden. It’s almost as if they were trying to cause Behaviorial Disorders with this.

The whole disc is thick with a strange FIresign-Theater-esque subversive sense of humor, and its cut-and-paste aesthetic has me longing for a time where people were willing to engage in a sort of impressionistic presentation of things. There’s no way you could recreate this in a Powerpoint slideshow.

The other topics covered in the series are Memory and Problem Solving, Human Development, Learning, Perception, and Social Psychology. I’ll post more excerpts if there seems to be any interest.

Behavior Disorders and Therapy (Excerpt 1) from the Psychology Today Record Series (1972)

Behavior Disorders and Therapy (Excerpt 2) from the Psychology Today Record Series (1972)

“State Assembly” by The New Age Steppers

newage.jpgGreat freaky dub from one of the best acts on Adrian Sherwood’s On-U Sounds. The New Age Steppers were comprised of former Slits and Pop Group members, members of Aswad, and even Neneh Cherry.

Their earlier albums are a bit on the more experimental side, but they eventually became a pretty serious dub outfit. Frequently collaborating with heavies like Creation Rebel. If you like the sound of that and enjoy this track, I recommend you track down the Massive Hits Vol. 1. CD that was released several years back.

Back in the pre-MP3 player days, I lost my copy of that disc when I set my bag down to tie my shoe one night on Vanderbilt Ave in Brooklyn and forgot to pick it up. I’m sure someone’s enjoying it right now.

The New Age Steppers, “State Assembly” from the New Age Steppers LP on On-U Sounds (1980)

“Telephon” and “Hundsgemein” by Ideal

ideal.jpgAnother European two-fer, this time from Klaus- Schulze- of- Tangerine- Dream- produced Ideal.

These tracks are from the aggressive new wave band’s 1980 debut. They went on to put out a couple of albums that I’ve not heard, but I love where this LP is going.

I think about this album most mornings when I tie my tie. Yes, I have to wear a tie to my job. Seventeen-year-old Patrick would kick my ass. I’d hate to see what he’d do when he saw the tights I do my winter running in.

Ideal, “Telephon” from the self-titled LP (1980)

Ideal, “Hundsgemein” from the self-titled LP (1980)

“Holy Holy” by Play Dead

playdead.jpgBack from Buffalo with a million things to do. Here’s a quick holdover goth post I ripped from vinyl before I left.

I have a new batch on deck that I’ll begin posting soon, please let me know if there are any requests.

Here’s some mid-80s fuzzy goth from UK’s Play Dead. Weird but funky. Maybe more akin to a darker A Certain Ratio than anything typically goth. They’re on MySpace– more songs and obligatory reissue information there.

Play Dead, “Holy Holy” from the From the Promised Land LP on Clay Records (1984)

“Rail/Collapso” by Bosho

bosho.jpgNice noisy two-fer to keep y’all busy until we get back from our trip to the frozen tundra of Buffalo, which is actually only a bit colder than NYC this week. In between servings of wings and beef on weck, I’m hoping to get back into a couple of the record stores out there if they haven’t all dried up… any ideas or faves?

Back to the sounds at hand…  NYT has a story on Bosho from 1988 if you’re interested, written about a year after this disc was released:

Bosho sets in motion Western and Eastern, new-fangled and down-home sounds, layering them into crafty, off-center funk.

Reading it, I want to hear their “broadened” post-Chop Socky sound. I think this album has an amazing cover. Open the kitchen cabinets and play along!
Bosho, “Rail/Collapso” from the Chop Socky LP on Dossier Records (1987)

“Booyaka (Version)” by Verdy Green

verdy.jpgHappy new year! Here’s a a dinky dancehall gem to start your year right. Another one I know nothing about, but spin all the time. Both the instrumental and vocal versions posted here. I don’t know why I always prefer the instrumentals, perhaps so I can apply my own inner monologue as lyrics.

Booyaka!

Verdy Green, “Booyaka (Version)” from the Chopper Productions 12″ (198?)

Verdy Green, “Booyaka (Vocal)” from the Chopper Productions 12″ (198?)