Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: London trio Archie Bronson Outfit and San Fran foursome Triclops!
Listed: Archie Bronson Outfit + Triclops!
Archie Bronson Outfit
Pounding beats, jittery vocals and a ruinous sexual intensity marked the second Archie Bronson Outfit album, Derdang Derdang, released in the US back in the spring of 2006. Dusted’s Jennifer Kelly fell hard for it, calling the first five cuts “driving, droning, primitively charged post-punk songs whose reference points fall well below the waist.” Now, four years later,the London-based trio are readying a follow-up, Coconut, produced in part by DFA’s Tim Goldsworthy and slated for release March 23 on Domino Records. Bassist Dorian Hobday participated in this week’s Listed
1. The Embarrassment – LP (Time to Develop)
A great and shamefully under exposed band. They formed in Wichita, Kansas in 1979 and made joyous punk pop until their split in 1983. Stand out tracks for me are "I’m a Don Juan" and "Wellsville." Possibly the coolest bunch of bespectacled men ever to walk the earth.
2. A Number of Names – Sharevari (Capriccio)
Sexy creepy early Techno from 1982. The name Sharevari evolved from the Charevari dance parties taking place in Detroit from around 1980. This record has a really great mood to it. It feels like a straight line. A night-time record. A vocal and set of lyrics that fit 100 percent with the music. I love the way the tempo of the track is constantly thrown off by the way that the two rhythmic synths are slightly out of time with one another.
3. Gershon Sirota - Sings a Holiday Service (The Greater Recording Co)
I picked this record up in Melbourne a couple of years ago. Gershon Sirota was the foremost Jewish Cantor in the early years of the 20th Century. From his church in the Ukraine his reputation spread as far as St Petersberg in Russia, to where he was summoned to give a series of concerts before Czar Nicolas II. By 1905 his records were being distributed in Europe and by 1912 he made his first tour of the US, performing at Carnegie hall and the Metropolitan Opera house. His stellar career was sadly halted by the second world war. In 1943 he was killed along with his family in the Warsaw Jewish Ghetto. A capella or with a band behind him he is excellent but, for me, it is when he is backed by a full choir (as on this record) that he is truly great. The combination of his tenor voice with the richly layered harmonies of the choir (and filtered through the production sound of recordings from this era) I find very beautiful and melancholic.
4. Duke Garwood – Holy Week (Loog)
Recorded at his home in Brixton in the Holy Week of 2005 this is an largely undiscovered modern classic. Simple songs and instrumentation take on great power in their delivery by two musicians (Luke Garwood and Paul May) perfectly in tune with each other. For an unadorned acoustic record Holy Week evokes massive space and many varied landscapes.
5. Tune-Yards – Bird Brains (4AD)
Is Merrill Garbus from Montreal. Bird Brains recently came out on 4AD. In general I am pretty tired of seeing people performing music with loop pedals but I can watch this til the cows come home. Genre bending brilliance. It’s full of soul, original but not lofty in any way. My favorite song on the album is "Little Tiger."
6. Transchamps – "Somebody Like You" (Thrill Jockey)
This is a recent discovery for me. "Somebody Like You" is a song from the collaborative album between Trans Am and the Fucking Champs entitled Double Exposure. The Fucking Champs recorded part of the material and sent it over to Trans Am to finish off. The album is good but it is specifically this song which stands out for me. Blissed out gothy rock with a classical twinge, which sounds dreadful but here it’s the opposite. This is one of those songs where everything fits together perfectly; the parts that are played, the sounds of the instruments and the production of those sounds.
7. Alan Vega – Station (Blast First)
Industrial intensity from one half of Suicide. Alan Vega’s voice and delivery is out there on its own. It covers a huge amount of ground emotionally and musically, often in the space of one second. Sometimes he doesn’t really sound like a human. Totally unique and very addictive. I love the artwork on this record too.
8. Julee Cruise – Floating into the Night (Warner)
I have probably listened to this album about five hundred times. It’s hard to deny a record when it’s genre is described as ‘Dream Pop.’ Whenever I am driving at night it goes on. The aesthetics of David Lynch combined with the voice of Julee Cruise is a match made in heaven - fairly literally in this instance. It sounds like a happy death.
9. Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares – Volume 1 (4AD)
This one is back on the melancholy choral tip. The Bulgarian State Television Female Vocal Choir was formed in the 1950s to record multiple voice versions of Bulgarian folk music for (as the name suggests) TV and Radio. This album was originally released in 1975 on a Swiss label: Discs Cellier and then in the 1980s by 4AD. I was blown away when I heard this. It is recognisably Eastern European folk but it also sounds avant-garde, classical, Arabian and medieval all at the same time. The arrangements employ quite a lot of dissonant harmony which, when you hear them for the first time, are otherworldy and intense. Its not minor or major, it’s somewhere in between.
10. The Louvin Brothers – Satan is Real (Capitol)
The main redeeming feature of religion (as far as I can see) is the creativity in the arts and architecture that it has inspired and invigorated over the years. The Ummayad Mosque in Damascus, Cologne Cathedral, the devotional art of Velasquez or Juan Martinez Montanes and (in this instance) an album by the Louvin Brothers all originate from this same passion. These are great country songs with a little dose of gospel. Classic two part harmonies. A killer album cover too.
Triclops! is the San Francisco foursome of Christian, Johnny, Phil and Larry. Since 2006, they’ve been keeping the flame of past malcontents like the Jesus Lizard and Don Caballero. Melody is generally an afterthought, taking a backseat to shock and awe. They’ve shared the stage with Melt-Banana, Acid Mother’s Temple, Melvins and Circle, and have the honor of releasing the final record on the extinct GSL Records. The band’s third record, Helpers on the Other Side will be released by Alternative Tentacles on March 16, and you can listen to two songs from the LP on the Triclops! MySpace page right now. Christian took part in this week’s Listed.
The now ex-Floridan Kitchen worker’s guide to essential acid rock listening (or "How I survived washing dishes in the ’90s without Peyote")
Some necessary history for the readers of this list is to know the backdrop for my exposure to these now classic records, which at the time were all on dubbed cassettes. Like all Florida surfer bums, I worked in kitchens for most of the 1990s, the most important one being an acoustic live music bar/grill in St. Augustine called Mill Top Tavern. The kitchen was run solely by rockers, who were all 5-7 years older than me. They snuck me into bars, gave me mix tapes, and I gave them all rides home. I owe it all to them and our manager "Handsome Hands." Here’s a typical day at the Top:
10:00am (Kitchen opens)
Shockabilly - Heaven
We’d get right to our hangover/McDonald’s and crank this insanity as loud as possible. Between the blend of totally fucked covers, like "Instant Karma" and "Life’s a Gas," came Eugene Chadbourne’s beautiful medley of back porch sunburn jams and totally destructo acid thrash. I couldn’t believe they were from New York. I swore them boys must be from Texas, but that was just Kramer’s future on the boil, like the beer we cooked the hot dogs in.
12:30-2:30 (lunch rush hell)
Sonic Youth - Confusion is Sex
Every hipster, including the band (the ultimate hipsters) said that this was "No-Wave." A rebellion, I get it, but to us stuck in the middle of 250 chicken fingers, 500 melted cheese sticks and 5,000 lubed chicken wings this was Acid Punk at its finest. This band is my Grateful Dead, and I’ll follow them into the abyss, but I still can’t believe that these dark, ominous swirling guitars sounds were all high E-strings. Melts my mind. This record scared the hell outta me for years, and I still can’t put it down. At this point in the lunch rush, we’d take turns on a carrot pipe in the walk in cooler, just so we wouldn’t go insane from the 195 degree, 4 microwaves on at all times cucina.
2:30-4:00pm (home stretch, a.k.a warm draft beer time)
The Grifters - So Happy Together & One Sock Missing
At this point we all realized that we were not gonna die, and we revisited the carrot, and started singing along to one of my all time favorite bands, The Grifters. This band is pure psychedelic genius, and the sounds of these records were captured on 4-tracks in the flower shops and god knows what other cracks Elvis used to piss in of Memphis. All the hits, "She Blows Blasts of Static," "Corolla Hoist," "Love Explosion," they’re all blended into these two bubbling opuses. The Grifters pulled together full on rock assault riffs, with break your heart ballads of acoustic and outta tune violins, replete with walls of shredding noise mixed really high for no reason. We used to joke that all their songs were the same story lyrically, which was The Grifters being beamed up into a spaceship to drink whiskey on the rocks and flirt with hot alien chicks. Not too far off the map of the sun. A big rock moment for me was I once smoked a joint with Dave Shouse and it got me sick with Flu for almost 2 weeks. YEAH!!! Rock germs!!
So another shift ends, and my last duty is to put on a fresh batch of chicken wings (about 100) on the grill for the night cook. As I bring the bucket of butter out to the grill, humming a line from One Sock Missing’s "One thing I’ll never know now," I go to light the gas and I notice it’s already been turned on, and at that moment someone has successfully lit me on fire. Shift over.
By Dusted Magazine