incredibly strange Archive

Album Review: Negativland — True False

Note: According to Wikipedia (one of very few even potentially reliable sources of information about Negativland), current and founding member Mark Hosler “may currently reside in or near Asheville, North Carolina.” His LinkedIn profile suggests as much. To some, creating works of artistic value by (in part or in whole) appropriating the work of others

Welcome to Cadillac Baby’s Show Lounge: The Bea & Baby Boxed Set

From the perspective of crate-diggers – amateur and professional music archivists alike – one of the great benefits of the digital age has been the rescuing of obscure recordings. Against the backdrop of the recently revealed 2008 Universal fire in which countless audio masters were lost, it’s some comfort to discover that the catalog of

EP Review: Patrick Ames – All I Do is Bleed

“I Want You” opens with a slightly mysterious-sounding acoustic guitar strum, quickly setting a mood. That mood s quickly shattered when Ames starts singing; his rush of words sounds more like a nightclub-era Woody Allen routine than a singer-songwriter. His lyrics are interesting enough, but ending each phrase with a whiny “aaaahhhh” seems an odd

They Created a Monster: The Story of The Munsters’ 1964 LP

Though exploitation knows no era, the 1960s was truly the decade of the cash-in. Americans of a certain age recall that in the wake of the Beatles’ initial stateside success (beginning with a filmed show in Washington D.C. and a series of broadcasts on The Ed Sullivan Show), countless ripoff albums seemed magically to appear.

Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ Out-of-print 1990s Recordings Get a Reissue (Part Two)

Continued from Part One… Several of the songs feature a female voice in the mix, engaging in a sort of vocal sparring with Jay. What’s the story on that? He would bring his wife into the studio. And It was hysterical when those two started communicating! She’s in the background. She would go out there

Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ Out-of-print 1990s Recordings Get a Reissue (Part One)

Screamin’ Jay Hawkins (born Jalacy Hawkins in 1929) is one of those artists whose influence would far outpace his commercial success. Trained as a classical pianist and singer with an operatic range, Hawkins instead gained notoriety for his outlandish persona and over-the-top vocal style, exemplified by his 1956 single “I Put a Spell on You.”

Hundred-word Reviews: Reissues, Archival Releases, Compilations

My shelf full of albums to be reviewed has run out of space. So once again it’s time for a raft of hundred-word reviews. All sixteen titles in this roundup are reissues, compilations and/or archival releases. 6-String Drag – High Hat (Schoolkids Records) Before Americana was coined as a genre, there was alt-country. Combining rock

Album Review: Jean Jacques Perrey — Moog Indigo

Perhaps Jean Jacques Perrey shouldn’t be thought of in the same context as Jean-Michel Jarre, Hans-Joachim Roedelius and other early pioneers of the synthesizer-as-musical-instrument. His work wasn’t as edgy and experimental as that of those other guys. But here’s the thing: a half-century on, spinning a Perrey album is far more likely to bring a

Hundred-word Reviews for September 2016, Part 4

Five more quick ones. All these albums bear further investigation. Wild Man Fischer – An Evening with Wild Man Fischer Conventional wisdom holds that while Gail Zappa was alive, she prevented reissues of many albums originally released on Frank’s Bizarre/Straight labels. Whether that’s true or not, Gail’s gone now and we finally have a legit

Album Review: Big Star — South West

Though they were resolutely ignored during their time together in the 1970s, Memphis-based Big Star eventually got both their critical due and some exceedingly belated recognition and commercial success. The reunion shows and tours featured original members Alex Chilton and Jody Stephens plus – from The Posies – Jon Auer and Ken Stringfellow (a full-concert