incredibly strange Archive

Album Reviews: Four from The Residents

Though they initially submitted demo recordings to major record labels (the bootleg The Warner Brothers Tapes documents the most notorious of these), the inscrutable collective that once jokingly billed themselves “North Louisiana’s Phenomenal Pop Combo” released most of their albums on their own Ralph Records label. That entity – though not The Residents themselves –

Album Review: The Residents’ Commercial Album

Ex-Turtles and Mothers vocalists Flo and Eddie (Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan) used to have a nationally-syndicated radio show. One recurring component of the merry duo’s program involved spinning records by some of their musical peers. The thing is, they wouldn’t play anywhere near the whole song: after they felt like they had given listeners

DVD Review: The Complete Truth About De-evolution

Beginning in the 1970s, DEVO established themselves as among the most effective artists using using the creative tool of video in the musical idiom. Contrasting starkly with the the myth-making and glamor of most other music videos, the work of DEVO is deeply unsettling and provocative. Twenty DEVO music video clips (plus some relevant extras)

Book Review: Joe Meek’s Bold Techniques

People like sensational stories. It’s an unfortunate fact, because the public’s focus on the superficial and lurid often obscures a deeper, nuanced story beneath. Barry Cleveland is not one of those people who is satisfied – or even interested – in the shallow, sensational stuff. Thank goodness for that, because his book Joe Meek’s Bold

Album Review: Don Berkoski – My Kind of Music

Before his sudden and untimely passing in 2005, my friend and bandmate Dave Jones was an enthusiastic participant in a slightly offbeat pursuit. Periodically, he’d contact a select group of friends, and all would gather at his place – a singular home filled with “naked lady” lamps and other ephemera – and enjoy a Bad

Album Review: Faye Richmonde — For Men Only

Though neither of my dear, sweet parents could ever carry a tune in the proverbial bucket, there was plenty of music in the Kopp household as I was growing up. By the mid- to late 1960s – the time at which I developed an interest in such things – Mom and Dad had amassed a

Album Review: Pulp and Pop Culture Box Vol. 1

You know what’s cool? When the compiler of a collection of music makes no outsized claims of cultural import about the music. Sometimes it’s art, for sure, but sometime, it’s just…fun. That’s certainly the case with Rock Beat’s new Pulp & Pop Culture Box Vol. 1. One hundred-plus tracks filling four CDs, it’s jam packed

Album Review: Brainticket – Cottonwood Hill

Hype is a funny thing. Sometimes it invites scorn, mockery. Recently I received a press release heralding the latest album by “the most talked-about band of 2013.” As you might have guessed, said band has never had a hit, and I’d not heard of them at all (neither had anyone from among an informal survey

Question Mark & the Mysterians: Dissin’ and Dishin’

In April 2008 I was fortunate to score an in-depth, in-person interview with Question Mark, leader of ? and the Mysterians. I wrote a long piece based on that interview; that feature will be published in an upcoming issue of Shindig! Magazine. What didn’t make that feature, though, were the scores off ofhand tangents which

Album Review: R. Stevie Moore — Meet The

R Stevie Moore is one odd dude. I can’t say whether he’s the sort that listeners would wish to “have a beer with”, but his music is worthwhile for the adventurous. There’s a whole sub-subgenre of music that sometimes goes by the sobriquet of “incredibly strange music.” (I’m not sure of this, but I think