Episode 36 – Harlan Ellison’s The Glass Teat

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Way back in Episode 7 I started to create soundtracks from the collected volumes of Harlan Ellison.

The first two went off without a hitch. When it came time for the third installment I balked. I couldn’t find the right songs in the right order. It just failed to work, so I tossed it aside an moved on.

When I reviewed Hard Case Crime’s reprint of Web of the City, I felt that itch. The one in at the base of my brain that constantly rubs when I leave a project incomplete. So I dug down deep, reread The Glass Teat and produced this: One of my favorite episodes to date. Yeah, I’ve used some of the sound clips before. Sue me (not you, Harlan, this is simply to work of a fan). As I mentioned before on other episodes, the parts that are Harlan speaking can be found at Deep Shag Records (vol. 1 – 3 are especially mesmerizing) except for the bit from “Welcome to the Gulag”. Harlan’s fiery words become incendiary when spoken.

Enjoy the show and Rage Well,

Production Notes:

Some people have asked for a look into the process and the hows and whys song are chosen. Since I tend to write notes anyway, I’ve decided to start typing them up for each podcast.
Enjoy

I Hate the TV – Violent Femmes
I pulled the Violent Femmes from my Fan Service 80’s podcast in exchange for this one. I’ve been battleing with The Glass Teat podcast for a year now. I originally said it would be out last summer, but I never found the right mix. My worry with this track is that it is too obvious, but the line “I hate the president” (which was a Reagan line) only hit me when I remembered that it was Reagan who put Harlan on a rabble-rouser list with poets and artists alike.

Old Square Eyes – The Mobbs
This one made the very first set list. I particularly love the lines which focus on the computer and playstation. Harlan’s last word on the subject of The Glass Teat, an audio recording called “Welcome to the Gulag”, turns the argument toward our dependence from TV to the zombie-esq allure of our phones and other devices. It is a trap: A dangerous one which tricks us into believing that we are living life simply because we take an instagram of it.

TV Screen – Thee Spivs
“What are you watching?” seems to be, in my life at least, the grown-up equivalent of the teenage “Who are you listening to? The image of wanting to punch out your eyes from the back of your head makes me chuckle constantly.

TV Soup – The Singing Loins
“Let’s watch someone else’s revolution…” and the passivity of action versus inaction.

Colour Television  – Eddie Currant Suppression Ring
ECSR gives a Velvet Underground-esq attack on the propaganda we see on the ole boy. I like to think that the drone in this song is the white noise of TV and the ‘million hypnotized’. I can’t tell you how many times I’ll be half way through a show with not clear idea of what I’ve seen. I get lost in the drone and lose the thread of the story.

Read more

Fan Service #3 – Words, Words, Words

Fanservice

Ambulances – Joe Fletcher & the Wrong Reasons -White Lighter
Country Feedback – R.E.M. – Part Lies Part Heart Part Truth Part Garbage
I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive – Hank Williams – 40 Greatest Hits
Here Come The People In Grey – The Kinks – Muswell Hillbillies
Dirty Life And Times   – Warren Zevon – The Wind (for Brooke H)
Mercy Street – Peter Gabriel   – Shaking The Tree ( for Colleen F)
Black Pear Tree – The Mountain Goats – Black Pear Tree EP
Innocent When You Dream (78) – Tom Waits – Franks Wild Years (for Steve S.)
Strange Fruit  – Billie Holiday
Black and Blue – Louis Armstrong – The Essential Louis Armstrong
Restless – Langhorne Slim – Langhorne Slim
Hip Kids – Becky Lee And Drunkfoot – Hello Black Halo
Powertrip – Monster Magnet – Powertrip (for Jezebella C)
God Save the Queen  – The Sex Pistols – Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols
My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down    – Ramones – Weird Tales Of The Ramones
Youth Is Wasted By The Young – The Trouble – Nobody Laughs Anymore            1
Don’t Drag Me Down – Social Distortion – White Light White Heat White Trash
Cheer Up! – the Singing Loins – The Complete and Utter
Pass The Mic – Beastie Boys – Check Your

Something Nice – The Singing Loins – Here on Earth CD/Digital

 The Singing Loins
Here on Earth
Damaged Goods (DAMGOOD405CD)

 

Cover by Billy Childish

The Singing Loins evoke a vast amount of sea imagery on their new album, Here on Earth, and I can think of no metaphor more perfect. There is a new serenity to the overall sound of the tracks and, with addition of double bass from John Forrester, an added depth I didn’t think possible after their last album Stuff. And, like the sea, Here on Earth may appear placid and calm on the surface, but, in the depths, houses untold treasure and dangers.

‘Hello Heaven’, the album’s opener, attempts to name a feeling of wanderlust and the need for departure. In an immediate response to the romantic ideal of travel ‘Monster Ashore’, is narrated by the captain of a sea going vessel who apparently seems to build his ship as he sails. Before they shove off he adds the doleful line, “Maybe we’ll survive,” pauses for a beat and adds a dash of reality with, “maybe not” before launching into the various methods a sailor can perish. These brutally honest moment makes the Singing Loins such an amazing band.

The next track of note, ‘Harbour Wall (St. Ives)”, continues the narrative as singer Chris Broderick spits, “I am the sea…the coastline is mine” in a Walt Whitman-esq show of bravado and personification. As the sea/song builds in anger and volume, we get a shift in the narrative that once again melds the new fuller sound of the Loins and their trademark ability to lyrically sucker punch you when you are just getting comfortable.

A traditional folk song, “Crown of Roses”, breaks the sea’s wrath in the best way possible and “Close Your Eyes” shows, once again, what amazing love poets the Loins are. Sure, any idiot can write a love song and sum up the passion and lust of those first moments, and most do, but it takes a poet to find the words to express a relationship that endures: What do you say after the kids have been born? After the bills may or may not have been paid? When the autumn years set in? Ask the Loins. They got your answer.

‘Happy Me Up’ kicks off the last bit of the album and, quite frankly, this is where the album really shines. “Happy Me Up’ is an almost indecipherable lyrical romp presumably about whaling with a screeching violin that is guaranteed to fulfill the song’s title promise.

‘Drunk and Fed’ is one of the most beautiful songs in the band’s career and “Try” seems to answer it as a morning after response.

‘Alien’ is not only the album’s most haunting track, but one of the most inventive in the band’s catalogue. In it, the narrator finds himself marooned from society. As the narrator admits he tries to be almost human the song rips itself in half and Broderick screams in screeched agony while a cacophony of drum, feedback, doll noises, and bass, smash against the speakers. Once again, the band’s ability to build character in roughly four minutes is nothing short of remarkable.

As the album winds down with ‘With All Your Heart’, Broderick frames what could very well be the band’s mission statement and a build of encouragement for musicians and fans alike: If you aren’t sore in the throat from singing, still in tune, and the strings aren’t broken, why even bother?

Here on Earth is all about experiences. It is about leaving home, venturing metaphorical seas, getting hurt, and singing along with all your heart. Everything else is not living just existing. And the Loins know how to live.

Check out the record release party at the 100 Club with Thee Spivs and numerous other live shows…

The Singing Loins Primer

This past week I was over at the Damaged Goods Records site and found that much to my pleasure there is a new The Singing Loins CD/Digital Release coming out in November (reviewed tomorrow at this very site!).

When I posted this news, an internet buddy asked me to try and explain the Loins in a few quick characters – 124 to be precise. One cannot simply explain the power of the Loins in such a confined manner. One needs pints of beer, the cry of gulls, a cigarette, and knowing you have nowhere to go for the next few hours. Hell, even if you don’t drink or smoke, you are welcome to sit in as the Loins are not discriminating.

They sound just like they look – click for link

Let’s simply pretend you don’t have that kind of time; kids, a job, only a desire to hear the world’s greatest folk tunes played by those who use no hyperbole. Technically, this would put you in the same boat as the members of the band, but here are some tracks (chosen based on my iTunes playcounter) to fall in love with. *

10. The Dog Shit GangStuff
It takes brass to use a Sex Pistols riff. It takes craft to improve on it. ‘I just wanna say in my f’n Fate.’

9. That’s How Murders HappenComplete and Utter
Before I quit smoking this is exactly how I used to feel in public.

8. Nail it Back Together Stuff
Pure poetry.

7. ValerieComplete and Utter
A folk song about, I always assumed, a Down Syndrome adult so beautiful and well crafted I dare you not to shed a tear.

6. Where’s My Machine GunStuff
A theme for the misanthrope in us all. 

5. To a Beautiful Woman Growing Older  The Drowned Man Resuscitator
This is one of the only honest love songs ever written. Removed is the Buddy Holly-esq pining and replaced with the reality of a couple who have been together and still love each other.

4. Psycho HippieUnraveling England
There is a horror movie here. But I fear it would be based on reality. The kazoo never sounded so menacing.

3. Drowned Man Resuscitator The Drowned Man Resuscitator
There is a new invention to save the poor drowned souls. See it in action!

2. Cheer Up!Complete and Utter
This is the perfect song for miserable days and the jerks who tell you it will get better!

1. House in the Woods Songs to Hear Before You Die
A track so good, my wife and I got married to it.

It’s own unique category: Shut Your MouthComplete and Utter.
No one, I repeat with cap locks on, NO ONE writes and ‘You Suck’ song like the Loins.

* I didn’t include anything off At the Bridge w/ Billy Childish

ALBUM LAUNCH w/ openers Thee Spivs at the 100 Club on November 6.

I will see them live one day…

 

Something Nice – Thee Spivs

Thee Spivs 
Black and White Memories LP (Damaged Goods Records)

A spiv, for anyone ignorant of British slang (or how to use google), is a petty thief ; a criminal dealing in black market goods.

Thee Spivs, for anyone who doesn’t own Black and White Memories, is a band that will sneak into an open window, drink all your beer, and hold your stereo hostage; and you really won’t mind, because they seem like such wholesome chaps.

Admit it, you’d buy contraband from these guys

I’m getting to this album a good year later than its actual release.

If I could invent time travel I would remedy this and fly to London waiting patiently like Elwood Blues outside Joliet Prison for this  release. Black and White Memories lives up to its namesake imbedding itself into your memory. I swear Thee Spiv’s are a lost band from the late 70’s punk scene. They’re intelligent, punctuate every line with a fist pump, and I spend most of the time screaming along with them as if I’d known every lyric since I was a kid.

Apparently there is an album slated for 2013 and if ever there was a reason to live well it is so you may survive long enough to pick it up.

 Album highlights: It is reassuring to own an album where even the weakest tracks are better than what sits in 98% of most people’s entire collections.

‘Flickin’ V’s’ – Sung from the POV of that kid you mocked remorselessly in high school and with an honesty that makes you almost feel guilty for loving it so damn much.

‘Bad Hunter’ – Get your shotguns out!

‘TV Screen’ – One of the best anti-TV tracks since the Singing Loins gave us ‘TV Soup’.

Podcast – BiblioCool Jukebox 2

the cover to bibliocool vol two

BiblioCool 2 – a podcast with Ixnayray of Way Past Cool – launched at Garagepunk.com this past weekend. Here is the track list but the show is exclusive to GPPN.

Erik Carlson :
The Sweetest Hymns – The Juke Joint Pimps [Best Song Of 2011]
Hard Times Come & Go – Pokey LaFarge [Best Song Heard In 2011]
Mystery Train – Elvis Presley [Best Guitar Riff]
Slow Down Gandhi – Sage Francis [Best Vocal]
Fortunate Son – Creedence Clearwater Revival [Best Lyrics]
Stupid Song – The Singing Loins [Wild Card]
Self Destruct – The Trouble [Best Punk Song]
The Story – Crop Circle [Best Drinking Song]
When The Shit Hits The Fan – The Circle Jerks [Best Soundtrack Song]
Here Comes Your Man – The Pixies [Best Song For Romance)

Ixnayray :
Me & My Girl – The Pussywarmers [Best Song Of 2011]
Single Man – Dead Horse Problem [Best Song Heard In 2011]
Lydia’s Black Lung – Alice Donut [Best Guitar Riff]
Hoist That Rag – Tom Waits [Best Vocal]
The Ballad Of Robert Moore & Betty Coltrane – Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds [Best Lyrics]
Everything Is Under Control – Coldcut [Feat. Jon Spencer & Mike Ladd] [Wild Card]
Soup Is Good Food – The Dead Kennedys [Best Punk Song]
Bourbon & Division – Firewater [Best Drinking Song]
The Lion & The Cucumber – Vampire Sound Inc. [Best Soundtrack Song]
Revolution Girl – Mariachi El Bronx [Best Song For Romance]

2011 – A Year in Pop Culture: Part II

Music is the Food of Gods

“…So it figures she likes the sound it makes.”
“The sound? What sound?”
“The bedsprings,” he said.
– David Goodis

It is astonishing how many great bands put out music this year. I quite honestly spent more money on this year’s releases (cause piracy sucks and robs people of making a living – well, except the pirates), than any year I can put my finger on.

Voodoo Rhythm Records owned my wallet  with new work from Delaney Davidson, The Monsters, The Pussy Warmers, and the Juke Joint Pimps. At some point there needs to be a massive VR Records festival in the US. When I win the lottery, I’ll put it on. It will tickle your eardrums with awesomeness.

Holly Golightly and the Brokeoffs released No Help Coming a staggeringly brilliant county romp of LSD, drinkin’, crazy cat ladies, and forlorn love. This is for fans of Americana, gorgeous vocals, and earnest music that pushes past preconceptions of country like a Black Thursday Wal-mart opening.

The Singing Loins released Stuff. I’m not sure why I love this band as much as I do. They are a folk outfit that isn’t anti-folk or ironic but instead create songs with an ingrained punk authenticity of sardonic men able to work anger into palpable tales of growing up in a blue-collar town. These are the songs of the dispossessed and irate.

The Computers. If NPR says something it must be true and so, 2011 was the year of the Garage Revival. Sadly, their article missed these guys. Hell, NPR wasn’t even firing at the right target. You like it raw? Rough? Loud? Stop reading this right now and buy the album online. I’ll wait as you hit this link and check it out. Good guys may wear white, but great bands dress all in white.

Winners: Pop Up Yours by The Monsters, Wake Up Sinners by The Dirt Daubers, This is The Computers, Stuff by The Singing Loins

 

Episode 15 – Anniversary Time

 

cover_bestofyearone

So here we are – Episode 14: The Best of Year One. Last year at this time I was plotting out episodes, collecting songs, mapping out authors and texts. My goal was simple: Bring attention to my favorite books using my favorite bands. With the help of the lovely Miss Hannah T Mrs. Hannah C., Steve Smith, Mr. A the Barber, Kopper over at Garage Punk Hideout, and you, this past year has been more than I hoped for.

This has always been a project for fun and enjoyment. I don’t make a dime, and considering the time that goes into this, I am operating at a huge financial loss; but who the hell cares? I figure I’m fighting against society’s current on intelligence.

This year will see podcasts for James Ellroy, Max Allan Collins, Christ Faust (pt. 2), Karen Russell’s Swamplandia!, Patrick Dewitt’s The Sisters Brothers, and other TBD.

Thank you for listening.

Rage Well,

Erik

Episode 14 – Year One!

Where’s The Devil… When You Need Him? – The Legendary Shack Shakers
A Thing You Gotta Face – Polka Dot Slim
Juvenile Delinquent – Ronnie Allen
House in the Woods – The Singing Loins
Sometimes Good Guys Don’t wear White – The Pretty Things
It’s all over but the cryin’ (from musicalley.com) – Cooterfinger
The Warlock in the Woods – Shannon and the Clams
CLEVER WAY TO CRAWL – Persian Claws
You Make Me Sick – Satan’s Rats
2nd Avenue – The Stumblebums
Coffee, God, And Cigarettes – Mischief Brew
Jesus Saves White Trash – Ian Stephen
The Man Who Counts (Album) – JackRabbit Slim
cutemonsters – The Clock Tones
Dr Watson And Mr Holmes – The Spirits Of Rhythm
The Bad In Me – Rumble Club
One Fine Day – Reverend Beat-Man
Pain – Catholic Girls
Back in Hell – Delaney Davidson
Don’t Give A Toss – Krewmen
Hi Mom It’s Me – Toothless George
I Put A Spell On You – Shane MacGowan & Friends
Nighttime Is The Right Time – The Allnight Workers
Ya’ll Motherfuckers Need Jesus – the goddamn gallows

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Bibliodiscoteque Episode 14 – Year One!

Episode 8 – A Very Special Bibliodiscoteque Christmas Special: Happy Birthday Jesus, Baby!:A Musical Tribute to the Reverend John R. Carlson

bibliochristmas

(Podcast and player at the bottom of the post)

I blame it all on Charles Dickens.

Certainly he wrote the second most popular Christmas tale of all time, but his is all about economics in a season designed for the celebration of a co-opted pagan right. Like Scrooge, punished and coerced for his greed and self centered attitude, every year we tend to give give give until it hurts hurts hurts in a similar effort to assuage our guilt for not giving or caring throughout the year.

Dickens sparked this concept that the biggest turkey can make up for our lack of kindness and animosity for our fellow man.

Dickens’ allegory of a cold un-mourned grave, for those of us who don’t help our fellow humans, should be saved for the long summer days when we need it most. Sure Victorian winters must have been difficult but the winter of the soul is so much darker.

Let this be the season you hear the consumptive cough and feel the weight of each link. However, rather than letting the fire of our humanity die under the world around us, spend the days smashing the bonds like Cool Hand Luke fleeing from the hounds and the Man with No Eyes. Don’t change because of the threat from an otherworldly being. Change because we are humans and, to quote another famous Brit, we need to be loved/Just like everybody else does.  We don’t have time to sit around and wait. Action is an internal force and stokes the fires that keep us warm

Should you not believe in the soul or the holiday make the world better because we deserve humanity. We deserve to go a day unbeaten, undefeated, and not unloved.

Fight against the ease of cynicism and anger so we don’t have to spend money and time making up for it later.

Set List: Episode 8 –  A Very Special Bibliodiscoteque Christmas Special: Happy Birthday Jesus, Baby!:A Musical Tribute to the Reverend John R. Carlson

jah peanuts a Bibliodiscotheque mix

Thee Olde Trip to Jerusalem – Mekons

My Madonna – The Singing Loins

Jesus Was Way Cool – King Missile

He turned the water into wine – Andy Dale Petty

Baptize Me In Wine – Screamin’ Jay Hawkins

Getting’ High for Jesus – Holly Golightly & The Brokeoffs

Jesus Saves White Trash – Ian Stephen

Only Jesus – Scott H. Biram

Fix It Jesus – Reverend Charlie Jackson

What Was I Doing, When the Saints of God Found Me? – Bishop Dready Manning

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot – Big Bill Broonzy

Charlie Brown Theme – Vince Guaraldi Trio

Jesus Gonna Make Up My Dying Bed – Josh White

There’ll Be None on the Other Side – Ralph Stanley And The Clinch Mountain Boys

God’s Gonna Cut ’em Down – The Golden Gate Quartet

Have a Little Talk With Jesus – Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Coffee, God, And Cigarettes – Mischief Brew

Plastic Jesus – Jello Biafra And Mojo Nixon

A Poundland Christmas – Wild Billy Childish & The Musicians Of The British Empire

Sorry Mr. Jesus – Seasick Steve

Ding Dong Merrily On High – The Singing Loins

Updates:

Tune in next month for a walk with Satan through the streets of Moscow when Bibliodiscoteque brings you EPISODE 9 – The Master and Margarita