31 August, 2009

THE TELL TALE HEARTS - TAKE A LOOK INSIDE




18. THE TELL TALE HEARTS - "Take A Look Inside" / "I'm Ready" (Nevermore Records) 1990

This was the last Tell Tale Hearts single to be released and it's a fitting way to go out with two sides of purist endeavour. By now the line-up hardly resembled the original band with only Mike Stax and Bill Calhoun remaining. No one appears to have been able to fill lead guitar duties and the licks were provided by associate Carl Rusk.

My copy of the record is a 'test pressing' and has the date 3rd March 1990 written on the label. It took me a fair few years to track down a copy so I don't think that many were pressed.

line-up:

Paul Carsola (drums)
Mike Stax (bass)
Bill Calhoun (lead vocals/harp)
Jon McKinney (guitar)
Ron Swart (organ)




22 August, 2009

THE FLESHTONES - I'VE GOTTA CHANGE MY LIFE

 


19. THE FLESHTONES - 'I've Gotta Change My Life' (IRS SP70018) 1981

'Roman Gods' is a hyped up album and I suppose many will really dig the whole work but there's just too many souly things on it for me to totally enjoy, including a fair sprinkling of saxophone (an instrument that spoils records IMO) and some funky bass.

I much prefer The Fleshtones when they go for the garage sound and 'I've Gotta Change My Life' ticks the boxes on that score.

21 August, 2009

THE FRANTIC V - ROOM 409





20. THE FRANTIC V - 'Room 409' (On Stage Records 005) 2004

The Frantic V are (along with The Sound Explosion) the garage kings of Greece and they're still a performing band and have been since 1994. They've released many records on various labels over the years and have become well respected men on the neo garage circuit.

'Room 409' is a farfisa and fuzz surf instro that opened the long player released by On Stage Records back in 2004. It's a recommended LP, side one in particular is fantastic including a fuzzed out version of The Wailers killer 'Hang Up'.

When I was doing some research on the band, I happened upon their myspace page and lo and behold in the pictures album there is a flyer where someone has blatantly plagiarized my deleted 'Timelapse Jangle' compilation cover. It brought back memories of how I ripped off the sleeve of Pebbles Volume 11 for a Mourning After poster back in the 80s.

Guitarist Kostas Kapetanakis sent me a copy of 'A Long Play With...The Frantic V' years ago...thanks again Kostas.


TINA PEEL - FIFI GOES POP





21. TINA PEEL - 'Fifi Goes Pop'/'Weekend Geek' (Teen Appeal Records 69) 1979

The second single by Tina Peel was released on their own label and comes housed in a neat sleeve showing a young Rudi Protrudi, the lovely Deb O'Nair and a big poodle called Fifi.

Well, I think that's Fifi pictured. 'Fifi Goes Pop' is about an unfortunate dog that get's baked in a microwave oven until it bursts. All I can say is that it must have been one of those large industrial microwaves to fit that bloody huge thing in.

'Fifi Goes Pop on setting number two'....

The back of the picture sleeve shows the band in more dodgy gear!



20 August, 2009

THE KLIEK - ME RIGHT NOW




22. THE KLIEK - 'Me Right Now'/'Nothing's Changed' (Twist Records 6) 1993

Amsterdam was the home of this fine combo who mixed obscure Euro beat and American garage with their own compositions. They built up a massive reputation with their live performances and released many records on various indie labels in the late 80s and early 90s.

'Me Right Now' is a faithful rendition of The Remains classic and The Kliek really do the song justice. Covering a song by the legendary Remains could have been a disaster but thankfully they pull it off with astute skill and a decent production.

The flip 'Nothing's Changed' is a moody beat song originally recorded by The Zombies and is another winner.

line-up:
Robert Muter (vocals)
Marcel Kruup (guitar)
Theo Brouwer (bass)
The Gub (drums)

When The Kliek disbanded in the mid 90s Robert Muter formed Kek'66.

THE UNCLAIMED - UGH





23. THE UNCLAIMED - 'Ugh' (Hysteria Records HLP 1300) 1983

I've written about The Unclaimed a couple of times on my blog and no doubt I'll write about them in the future because I think they're one of the most authentic sounding non '66 punkers ever. Some would say a perfect example of a band operating in the wrong time zone.

'Ugh' from the Hysteria Records six track mini LP titled 'Primordial Ooze Flavoured' is a fuzzadelic wig out and I hope to give it some exposure on a 'Hung On You' podcast in the future, but until then my moptop freaks you'll have to make do with looking at this promo picture of The Unclaimed.
Long Ryders frontman Sid Griffin is pictured but by the time the band recorded 'Ugh' he had departed.

17 August, 2009

THE BOMBORAS - MOON PROBE

 



25. THE BOMBORAS - 'Forbidden Planet'/'Moon Probe'/'Time Bomb' (Dionysus ID074562) 1997

Way cool surf instrumentals from Los Angeles based band The Bomboras but sadly they're no more. Ex Fuzztone, Jake Cavaliere provides the only original in 'Forbidden Planet', 'Time Bomb' is an Avengers VI cover but my pick from the 45 is the spooky 'Moon Probe'.

15 August, 2009

THE PLAYN JAYN - JULIETTE

 


26. THE PLAYN JAYN - 'Juliette'/'Something Died' (A and M Records 241) 1985

London band The Playn Jayn had a massive reputation for their memorable high powered live performances but most of their recordings in the studio (like so many 80s bands) didn't compare.

'Juliette' shines however as a very commercial 60s influenced pop song. I'm not sure if a major label like A and M knew what to do with a garage style band like The Playn Jayn when the forgettable 80s were infested with awful synth bands and perm haired metal puffs from America.
'Juliette' of course sank without trace and the band were no more less than a year later.


 the back of the picture sleeve for 'Juliette'


Here's a rare Playn Jayn gig flier for an appearance at The Marquee, London on 17th April 1984.


PLAYN JAYN - Juliette
 

TINA PEEL - PUNK ROCK JANITOR




27. TINA PEEL - 'More Than Just Good Looks EP' (Dacoit/Limp Records) 1978

Now this is a funny old record by a band from Harrisburg, PA called Tina Peel. The music on offer could probably be described as bubblegum punk and judging by the image of the group it's a very much post '77 punk rock and pre New Wave look, so I don't think they're meant to be taken too seriously.

'Punk Rock Janitor' from the EP is a live recording but the sleeve doesn't indicate if it was from a gig. According to the sleeve though, all four songs were recorded in producer Jeff Meglio's basement, so maybe this was a one take run through.

"I wanna run my fingers thru Sylvain's hair
Sniff Debbie Harry's underwear
Dish the dirt with Deb O'Nair
I wanna be a punk rock janitor"

Tina Peel included in their ranks Rudi Protrudi and Deb O'Nair. All songs were written by Protrudi including 'Fabian Lips', a song he would demo with his next band The Fuzztones in 1983.

There were originally 450 EPs released with a picture sleeve. My copy is one of a handful with the title hand coloured in yellow. It's also signed by Rudi.

TINA PEEL - Punk Rock Janitor

12 August, 2009

BOYS FROM NOWHERE - JUNGLE BOY




28. BOYS FROM NOWHERE - 'Jungle Boy'/'1966' (Young Lion LR020) 1986

Conflicting sources indicate either a Columbus or Youngstown location in Ohio for this garage punk band led by singer/songwriter Mick Divvens.

Boys From Nowhere released three powerful 45s in the mid 80s with an influential nod towards The Lyres/DMZ. Mick Divvens has an almost 70s punk rock vocal attack. 'Jungle Boy' came out on their own label which apparently sold poorly at the time but is now a sought after collectors item. The song was compiled on 'Declaration Of Fuzz'...

Despite the negative comments made by Tim Gassen in his 'The Knights Of Fuzz' book I can recommend the first three Boys From Nowhere singles and another one of their 45s will feature higher in my Top 50 at some point.

line-up:

Johnny Bernardo (drums)
Ted Nagel (bass)
Mick Divvens (vocals/vox organ)
Eric Martin (backing vocals on '1966')
Charlie McNeil (guitar)




10 August, 2009

THE CLIQUE - REGGIE

 



29. THE CLIQUE - 'Reggie'/'She Doesn't Need You Anymore' (Detour Records DR 014) July 1994

There's been plenty of bands calling themselves The Clique down the years and in the 90s there just happened to be another combo with this moniker. This particular Clique were a set of London mods armed with a swingin' hammond organ and a nice range of shirts and circle lens sunglasses.

'Reggie' is a decent attempt at mod psych I suppose but it could have done with a bone crunchin' lead guitar solo or perhaps some fuzz. The flip 'She Doesn't Need You Anymore' lasted about 10 seconds on my turntable before the record was swiftly dispatched back in it's sleeve. Way too much brass on it for me to cope with. It sounds like friggin' Dexy's Midnight Runners and sent shivers down my spine.

The record sold well though and 4 pressings were made between July 1994 and June 1995 with a final count of 2,500 copies

THE CLIQUE - Reggie

09 August, 2009

STONE ROSES - MERSEY PARADISE

 
30. STONE ROSES - 'Mersey Paradise' (Silvertone ORE 6) July 1989

For some strange reason 'Mersey Paradise' was left off the acclaimed album 'Fools Gold'... The song was written in their early days when they wore paisley shirts, sported bowl haircuts and were pretty much unknown outside of their home City of Manchester. It's a shame all of that baggy nonesence spoilt them.

The only place to find the infectious jangle pop of 'Mersey Paradise' was on the B-Side of the 12" release of 'She Bangs The Drums'. It wasn't even available as a regular B-Side on the single format.

The first time I heard this tune was on the radio and I thought it was by some obscure Scottish jangle band and I got my pen ready to write down the groups name so I could go out and buy it. Imagine my surprise when it turned out to be The Stone Roses.
'Mersey Paradise' is the best thing they ever did.

STONE ROSES - Mersey Paradise
 

THE DUKES OF HAMBURG - LITTLE LOVER




31. THE DUKES OF HAMBURG - 'Little Lover'/'It's My Fault' (Screaming Apple SCAP 051) 1998

A release worth checking out on the respected Screaming Apple Records label is this one by The Dukes Of Hamburg. If primitive 60s style beat is your bag well, you're gonna dig this slice of vinyl.

'Little Lover' is a lo-fi punk beat cover of The Hollies tune whilst the other side is a version of 'It's My Fault' originally recorded by German band The Rattles.

THE ROAMIN' NUMERALS - BUCKLE UP!

 
32. THE ROAMIN' NUMERALS - 'Fruit Of The Day'/'Buckle Up! (Beluga 002) 1998

Beluga Records was a small indie label out of Stockholm, Sweden that is now defunkt. But the label did release early 45s by The Roadrunners, The Maggots and this gem by The Roamin' Numerals.

The Roamin' Numerals included in their ranks ex Fuzztones, Twisted and Headless Horsemen lead guitarist Elan Portnoy. I don't know the names of any other band members.

'Fruit Of The Day' sounds similar to those garage rockers he wrote with The Headless Horsemen with spiky lead guitar licks high in the mix. 'Buckle Up!' is perhaps the better side with bursts of wah wah but the words to the song are undecipherable.

Trevor Gallant from Beluga Records recently contacted me and kindly shared an image of the cancelled sleeve design. Trevor confirmed that 10 copies of the 45 in this sleeve were shipped to Australia before The Roamin' Numerals requested that future copies were sold with the psychedelic negative sleeve.

Follow Flower Bomb Songs on my Facebook page. I add loads of things I just don't have time to post on my website.



07 August, 2009

SIOUXSIE AND THE BANSHEES - DEAR PRUDENCE




33. SIOUXSIE AND THE BANSHEES - 'Dear Prudence'/'Tattoo' (Wonderland SHE 04) Sept 1983

This 45 was an unexpected foray into psychedelia by a band more associated with the 70s punk rock scene in England, but by 1983 they had developed a more complex sound and had undergone a few personnel changes.
One such change was the introduction of Robert Smith from The Cure on lead guitar. He took over duties from John McGeoch and persuaded the band to record The Beatles classic 'Dear Prudence'.

The Siouxsie and the Banshees version is a much quicker assault with Robert Smith's guitar to the fore. During this period he was solely using a Vox Teardrop Mark VI. Producer Mike Hodges also uses the technique of phasing or 'skying' as it's sometimes known to create that otherworldly soundscape.
Robert Smith and his Vox Teardrop circa 1983

SIOUXSIE AND THE BANSHEES - Dear Prudence

THE REACTIONS - I WANT YOU

 


34. THE REACTIONS - 'I Want You'/'Frenzied' (St. Valentine Records SVR-014) 1986

Power Pop bands weren't exactly falling over themselves in the mid 80s but three piece group The Reactions used the Flamin' Groovies template well adding their own touch of modernisms. Some pleasant Rickenbacker guitar leads and the drum patterns weaved are splendid as they say.

Both the rocker 'I Want You' and the instro 'Frenzied' are worth checking out.

The Reactions were from Cleveland, Ohio.

line-up:
Dave Swanson (guitars, drums)
Chuck Wagner (guitars, lead vocals)
Brian P. McCafferty (bass)

06 August, 2009

THE TRIP - STICK LIKE GLUE

35. THE TRIP - Stick Like Glue (Voxx Records 200.019) 1984

The second and last song by The Trip to be compiled was 'Stick Like Glue' written by Tom Neale. This garage psych winner appeared on Greg Shaw's 'Battle Of The Garages' Vol 2.

I wonder if the Don Ciccone in The Trip is the same person who was a member of The Critters and wrote their famous song 'Mr Dieingly Sad'

Answers on a postcard as they say....

line-up:
Tom Neale (guitar, organ, vocals)
Don Ciccone (guitar, vocals)
Steve Balestra (bass)
Vic Gentile (drums)

Don Ciccone from The Trip recently got in touch and confirmed that he is NOT Don Ciccone from The Critters. He has provided the following information:

Funny you should mention the unreleased tape. it was supposed to come out in the 80s on a label called Sounds Interesting out of New Jersey but they folded. The problem was always that we didn't quite have enough tracks for an album. We had something like 8 songs.
Some label in Australia wants to put it out but again they want us to find extra tracks.

We did record a different version of "Stick Like Glue" - with 12 string and organ. Right now we're trying to go thru the tapes and see what's there.
I don't know how Tim Gassen got the tape. That was a surprise, seeing us in that book.
We got a LOT of fan mail when those two songs came out on those comps and a fair amount of press, considering.


Tom Neale and i still work together, writing songs and jamming. The other guys are on the East Coast but we're all still in touch. I'd love to put the band together again.

04 August, 2009

THE TRIP - NEVER TOO LATE FOR LINDA

 


36. THE TRIP - 'Never Too Late For Linda' (Goldmine tape A-135) March 1985

Goldmine Magazine sponsored the cassette only release of new bands with that 60s influence calling it 'Garage Sale!' Most of the bands on it had previous releases on small labels such as The Gravedigger V, The Tell Tale Hearts, The Fuzztones and The Unclaimed.
I was more interested in the bands that didn't have much or any exposure before and one of those bands that stood out were The Trip.

The liners of the tape state that they hailed from San Francisco. 'Never Too Late For Linda' has got some choice fuzz and a spooky sounding organ. The band also had a song called 'Stick Like Glue' compiled on Voxx LP 'Battle Of The Garages Volume 2'.

But apart from these two songs mentioned that was it from The Trip, although Tim Gassen mentions in his book 'The Knights Of Fuzz' they have an unreleased tape of material that has never seen the light of day.

THE TRIP - Never Too Late For Linda

03 August, 2009

THE HOODOO GURUS - I WANT YOU BACK




37. THE HOODOO GURUS - 'I Want You Back'/'Hoodoo You Love' (Big Time BTS 1177) March 1984

One of the few Australian bands to make it outside their native land were Sydney based quartet The Hoodoo Gurus. 'I Want You Back' is very anthemic and I'm not sure how you would describe the sound. Is it power pop or garage rock? Maybe it was this strange mix that got them to a higher level success wise.

members:

Brad Shepherd (guitar/vocals)
Dave Faulkner (guitar/lead vocals)
Clyde Bramley (bass/vocals)
James Baker (drums)

 

THE MYSTREATED - THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES




38. THE MYSTREATED - 'The Emperor Wears No Clothes' (Shindig Records 002) 1997

'Lovely Sunday Dreaming' was the final album offering by English band The Mystreated before they disbanded shortly after it's release. When The Mystreated started making records one reviewer said they sounded like an inept Monkees but by 1997 they'd become very competent musicians and this album is loaded with such great melodies.

'The strangely named 'The Emperor Wears No Clothes' is my pick from this long player. It's a melancholic raga psych gem with killer organ and lead guitar breaks closing out the song.

THE MYSTREATED - The Emperor Wears No Clothes

02 August, 2009

THE SUNNYBOYS - TOMORROW WILL BE FINE




39. THE SUNNYBOYS - 'Happy Man'/'Tomorrow Will Be Fine' (Mushroom K8335) June 1981

The Sunnyboys hailed from the Sydney area and were named after an orange flavoured frozen ice treat. They got their break supporting The Lipstick Killers and a record deal with Mushroom Records soon followed.

'Happy Man' was their first 45 for Mushroom but it's the B-Side 'Tomorrow Will Be Fine' that gets the nod and enters the recommended 50. This is a fine power pop record and was no doubt an influence on bands that followed in Australia a couple of years later.


THE LEARS - Her Magic Smile

40. THE LEARS - 'Her Magic Smile'/'Don't You Know' (Misty Lane Records 028) 1995

updated entry here

01 August, 2009

FREDDY and the FOUR-GONE CONCLUSIONS - Stand Up




41. FREDDY and the FOUR-GONE CONCLUSIONS - 'Stand Up'/'Today' (Get Hip GH-228) 2002

'Stand Up' is an obscure Del Shannon song that wasn't released in his lifetime and here Michigan based Freddy Fortune and his band deliver the goods with respect. It also features Max Crook, Del Shannon's original keyboard player providing a solo on his custom built Musitron keyboard.

The flip 'Today' is a tasty folk rocker with lots of jangle and similar in style to the last recordings by Freddy's previous band Fortune and Maltese and the Phabulous Pallbearers.

 
FREDDY and the FOUR-GONE CONCLUSIONS - Stand Up

exactly one year ago I posted a review of the original 'Stand Up'...


 
DEL SHANNON - 'Stand Up' (Liberty Records) 1966

Del may be sporting his late 50s early 60s mutton chops and what must be the largest sunglasses in the world but that didn't stop him writing and recording the GREAT 'Stand Up' in December 1966.

It was never released in the 60s (the liners of the CD 'The Further Adventures Of Charles Westover' don't say why).....it's amazing that something sounding so 'radio friendly' was never released at the time.

The song was recorded at SRS Studio in Hollywood and produced by Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart.
Tommy Boyce and Del Shannon would sadly commit suicide in the 90s by shooting themselves in the head.

DEL SHANNON - Stand Up MP3 (320 kBits)