"Life is a jet plane/ it moves too fast" - Bob Dylan.
Wow. Poetry, dude. Life has been moving pretty damn fast of late, and I haven't been able to catch up. Who'da thunk having a kid would be so much work? Well, of course it is, but as of late, it's meant much less time to commit to this blog. Just as I'm settling in for a good session of wordsmithery, l'il Bessie gets all antsy and I've got to drop my keyboard aktion and play Father again. So be it! Like I said to a friend the other day: it is simply impossible to bum out a new parent of a healthy, happy baby.
There's also other things occupying my life of late. The label was fairly inactive in regards to even thinking about releasing anything new whilst the prospect of fatherhood hung over me, but now that things are going swimmingly, I've decided to dive headfirst back into the label game and dedicate a lot more time and effort to it. There's a few very exciting things coming out hopefully before year's end. Firstly, if you've been reading this blog over the last 6 months you would no doubt have heard me breathlessly praising the good works of Yawning Man and Ten East, specifically the former's Rock Formations LP and Pothead EP, and the latter's Extraterrestrial Highway LP. Both were previously available through the Spanish label Alone Records, but are, as of now, deleted. In the future they will be on Lexicon Devil (w/ Pothead and Rock Formations on the one CD), and I will be exclusively releasing their brand new studio efforts, both being recorded and worked on as I write this. Even more excitingly, Ten East now feature GREG GINN(!) on bass, and Gary Arce from the group (my contact for both bands) assures me that their new direction is in a total free-rock Process Of Weeding Out vein. Excited? Good. I sure as shit am. I wasn't lying when I said that the recorded efforts of both bands were the most exciting rock music I'd heard in the last couple of years.
Ever read any books from the 331/3 series? You've probably seen them around. There's two new volumes you may be interested in grabbing yer mits on, if you're at all partial to the audio nonsense I'm prone to shout about: the new entries in the series attempt to document Sonic Youth's Daydream Nation and, more importantly, the finest American rock album ever recorded, the Minutemen's Double Nickels On The Dime. I've read the first 20 pages of the latter, and to be honest, I'm really not too confident as to where it's heading, but I'll reserve my judgment until I've truly digested it and give you the full spiel then.
Some other fine things? Let me kill some space...
1) GROUNDHOGS - Split LP
I've prattled on about this at length before. Perhaps you weren't listening, or perhaps you should just listen to this instead. This is that esteemed UK psychedelic hard-as-nails blues-rock outfit's 1970 LP, and it's distorto-rock headfuckery of the highest order. So far as visionary and completely atypical dawn-of-the-'70s rock 'n' roll goes, this is on a par w/ High Time-period MC5, Amon Duul II ca. Yeti or Hawkwind, that's for sure. Give 'em the respect they deserve.
2) PEARLS BEFORE SWINE - everything
I've become completely consumed w/ everything Tom Rapp ever recorded, namely the six Pearls Before Swine LPs - the two on ESP and subsequent four released on Reprise - and the 2003 double CD, The Wizard Of Is, released on the terrific Water label out of San Francisco, which documents Rapp and co. during the '60s and '70s w/ various live and demo recordings. A perfect combination of Dylan's nasally whine and Tim Buckley's occasionally soaring vocalese, Rapp was and remains an American original ignored by way too many, and that includes me for longer than I'd care to admit.
3) CLUSTER - Cluster II LP
Nice reissue on the Russian label Lilith, also responsible for putting one of the great headfuck albums of the 1970s, No New York, back in print a couple of years back. II is, ugh, Cluster's second release from the early '70s, a seamless, shiftless and utterly perfect combination of outer-space keyboard drones that's an ideal late-night listen after another day on earth feeling completely wiped out. I'm about to give it a spin... right... now.