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February 2022: News, Views and Perspectives.
The Great LD Beghtol. I continue to mourn the passing of the late great LD Beghtol. His death left a strange empty void in my life. I regret that I never met this ultra-talented fellow with a peculiar sense of humor. We communicated for many many years and I always felt a real connection with him as our interests were strikingly similar. During the last few months of his life I had the feeling there was something wrong but I did not know what. Now I am left wishing that I had made an attempt to communicate with him about whatever it was that was happening. I feel fortunate that our paths crossed for so many years. And I feel as if his spirit remains with me in some strange ways.
Lisa Germano. One of the best recording artists of all time is Lisa Germano. She recorded a batch of super strange mentally-challenging albums several years ago that boggle the mind. Apparently Ms. Germano has, at least for now, stopped releasing music. Such a shame, because she is so strikingly original. I can only hope that at some point Ms. Germano decides to treat her forever fans (of which I am one) to more of her ultimately stimulating audio art. If you've never heard Lisa's music, I highly recommend all of her albums...but especially Lullaby For Liquid Pig, In The Maybe World and No Elephants. All three are modern classics.
The William Burroughs connection (true story). Many years ago when I was in high school I was simultaneously taking college classes (some special program they had for some students with the required grade point average). The college had a very simple literary magazine that featured pieces written by students. I submitted some of my stuff, thinking it would be ignored because it wasn't good enough. To my amazement, the editor (who was much older than I was and far more intelligent) took an immediate interest in my stuff and published lots of it...including a multi-page story that was mostly nonsense (which I will probably upload soon). The cool editor guy told me that my writing reminded him of William Burroughs (who I had never heard of). He gave me a Burroughs book and suggested I read it. I definitely found it interesting, but it didn't really push my buttons so much. Over the next few years a few other individuals also told me my stuff reminded them of Mr. Burroughs. I never really understood the connection...other than the fact that we both seemed to enjoy (a) breaking the rules of grammar and (b) making lots of references to intravenous drug use. Sometimes things come full circle in certain situations, and that is the point of this little story. Decades later after I had written tons of stuff, I received an email from William Burroughs' partner. He told me that William was very ill and during his last few days he wanted to show him how he had influenced other up-and-coming modern authors. I was flabbergasted that this man had contacted me and, out of respect, did not want to admit that his partner was not an influence. So I sent them a bunch of my magazines, which were apparently some of the last things that Burroughs was perusing at his bedside just before he passed away. The reason I am presenting this story now is that it has always seemed bizarre to me that Burroughs entered my consciousness when my writing was first published. And my writing entered his consciousness right before he passed away. Strange.
The Bottle Kids. I did a review of an album by this underground pop/rock band a few years ago. Because it has become an all-time favorite here in babysueland, I'd like to again recommend the album Such A Thrill by The Bottle Kids (on the Kool Kat Musik label). Eric Blakely (the man who is the band) created an all-time classic for anyone who loves insanely simple and catchy guitar pop. Such A Thrill spins like a non-stop string of singles you've never heard before. Everyone single track is a gem. I highly recommend this album, you will not be disappointed.
Great Television. It's not new, but it's in the MUST SEE category. If you want to experience an incredibly surreal and hilarious television series that is like no other, check out the British show The Mighty Boosh. Starring Julian Barratt and Noel Fielding, the show is light years beyond the mundane dribble that's normally out there. Visually and psychologically amazing, and very very different. It is sad indeed that the show is being yanked from circulation by some individuals who now consider the absurd antics on the show to be unacceptable.
PDFs From the Past. On this page (and on this separate page just for PDFs) are links to the first two babysue books / mini-magazines: The babysue Book (Volume 1, Issue 1) & babysue's Philosophy Book (Volume 1, Issue 2). Next month I will upload babysue's Recipe Book. Early publications were only published in very limited quantities, which is what has prompted me to begin this ongoing project. Note: Opinions expressed are not necessarily the author's opinions.
Miscellaneous. One of my favorite ongoing resources for credible music reviews is Canada's Poprock Record. The website is the one man project created by Dennis Pilon, an exceedingly intelligent man with superb taste. The featured artists are the always the ones making music that is credible and real...rather than the ones that are super famous and dull. Always an excellent read. HDMN has just launched a new label in the United Kingdom called frtyfve Records. This one sounds interesting. "One of My Favorite Things" is a super cool new track from the band King Black Acid and the Rainbow Lodge. The band's music is described as stoner-pop, bubble-grunge and space rock. Really nifty stuff. Founding member Daniel Riddle has once again hit the target with this one. Not sure what I was expecting from David Bowie's Toy Box. But I'm pleased to report that it is much better than I was expecting it to be. Considering the fact that these recordings are the link between Bowie's weakest albums and some of his very best, these recordings will be of particular interest to devoted listeners. Some of the cuts are overblown and overproduced which is why I prefer the third disc. It presents songs in a simpler style without much of the excessive layering. Cool new neo-classical music from Kevin Kastning, Sandor Szabo and Balazs Major. The album is entitled Ethereal V and has been released by Greydisc Records. Brilliant stuff. There's a cool new band out called Mumble Day Parade. Snake Plant Records has just issued three songs by the band: "Mumble Day Parade," "Cuttin' Lettuce" and "Pet Milk." Gripping tunes. I'm a bit late on this but...I was very glad (and surprised) to learn that Alice Cooper chose to cover "Our Love Will Change the World" by one of my all-time favorite bands Outrageous Cherry. The cover version is very good, but Matthew Smith's original recording is way better. Hopefully this bit of unexpected exposure will turn more people onto one of the best pop bands of all time. And then maybe one day Mr. Smith will receive the recognition he so rightly deserves. Folks who love "Our Love Will Change the World" would do well to check out the band's other songs...amazing cool guitar pop with staying power. I just got hold of the remaining few Outrageous Cherry albums that were missing from my collection...and all I can say is WOW. There's a nifty new album out by The Things of Youth titled Volume Two. This band is the latest project spearheaded by Jon Fee who dedicated listeners will remember as the guy who fronted the ultra-cool bands The Rum Diary and Shuteye Unison. The album has been released by the fine folks at Parks and Records...so you know it's good. There's a killer new album out entitled Forever Home by London-based singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Tom Shotton. This fellow has a great knack for writing classic underground pop with staying power. He was previously in the band Do Me Bad Things (great name). If you love underground pop you will probably go apeshit over Shotton's new album. Anyone reading my web page(s) is probably already familiar with David Bash and International Pop Overthrow. But for those who are not, there's no better time to get turned on than now. Bash has his fingers firmly on the pulse of the best guitar pop out there. The world of underground artists can be overwhelming because there are so many thousands upon thousands of super talented people making music. But with guidance and direction from Mr. Bash, finding the best of the best is a much easier task for everyone.
NOTABLE NEW RELEASES. The Monochrome Set - Allhallowride (Tapete). The Jazz Butcher - The Highest in the Land (Tapete). Scott Metzger - Too Close To Reason (RPF). Lights and Motion - The World I Remember (Deep Elm Records). The Lagoons - Daybreak. The Split Squad - Another Cinderella (Red Chuck Records). Cody Carpenter - Balance of Extremes (Blue Canoe Records). Byron Rimes - Greatest Hits (Kool Kat Musik). Eric Alexandrakis - Good Girls Never Waltz With Me (Minoan Music). Thomas Heflin - Morning Star (Blue Canoe RecordRain Pes). Chris Church - Darling Please (Big Stir Records). Lannie Flowers - Flavor of the Month (SpyderPop). Anton Barbeau - Power Pop (Big Stir Records). Peggy James - The Parade (Happy Growl Records). Rain Perry - A White Album (Precipitous Records). Chris Haddox - Chris Haddox (Mountain Soul Records). The Waymores - Stone Sessions. Jesse Terry - Forget-Me-Nots Volumes 1 & 2 (Wander Recordings). Lolas - All Rise (Kook Kat Musik). The Tyrds - I've Got Shit On My Mind (Metal Postcard Records). Dante Matas - Avoid Discipline EP. Basement Revolver - Embody (Sonic Unyon Records). Gentle Party - God Complex (Phonometrograph). Kate Macleod - Uranium Maiden. Steve Noonan - Dreamland. Bart Davenport - Episodes (Tapete). The Wind-Ups - Try Not To Think. Sugarfungus - Letting Go, Moving Still EP. Soulline - Screaming Eyes (Massacre Records). Cheap Star - Wish I Could See (Kool Kat Musik). Ryan Bourne - Plant City. Feutre - Nos Rencontres. Guiltfilter - La Bandera. Stefanos Barbalias - Shark In A Pool EP. Alvablot - Harmonic Dystopia. James McLeod - Is This How Memories Work?
[Note that Notable New Releases does not list singles, only full-lengths and EPs.]