Friday, August 29, 2008

80s Nuggets: Hyped 2 Death (Unofficial Addendum)

For those of you who, like me, grew up in the 1980s -- or, also like me, you've conducted research into late-70s/mid-to-late-80s underground music -- some of these bands will be familiar. But the vast majority of them will not.

It should be noted, that 80s Nuggets: Hyped 2 Death (Unofficial Addendum) has absolutely nothing to do with the Nuggets comps, nor the fantastic Hyped 2 Death series of DIY CDs. In fact, this is not even a real collection; as such, there are no covers. I had to make up my own (as cassettes).

Presumably, this was put together by some mad music fan out there, who painstakingly gathered up all his/her favorite no-hit wonders from around the world, from that wonderfully-creative underground musical era between 1978 and 1990.

This, seemingly, has most of the musical genres that could be found in the "Alternative Music" realm: Alt-Rock, Punk Rock, Goth Rock, New Wave, Alt-Country, Neo-Folk... With 4 CDs (or Cassettes, as I've labeled them) and 91 songs, this would have made a great Box Set for those loners, geeks and misanthropes who populated every high-school hall in the 80s.

Click On The Individual Cassettes Below, To Download The Respective Volumes.

1Bed Of Roses (Athens, GA 1987)Crippled Pilgrims4:27

2Zeitgeist (Austin, TX 1985)Blue Eyes2:57

3Fetchin Bones (Charlotte, NC 1985)So Brilliant3:01

4Spiral Jetty (San Francisco, CA Maybe 1989Back There3:23

5R. Stevie Moore (Upper Montclair, NJ 1977)Compatibility Leaves3:36

6D.C.3 (Los Angeles, CA 1986)Party For One5:09

7Big Dipper (Boston, MA 1987)Lunar Module4:54

8Plan 9 (Wallingford, CT 1983)Gone2:55

9Plan 9 (Wallingford, CT 1983)B-3-113:51

10Richard Barone (NYC 1987)The Man Who Sold The World4:09

11The Secret Service (Smithtown NY 1987)What's Going On2:10

12Electric Orgasm (Belgrade, Yugoslavia 1983)Citadel5:00

13Guadalcanal Diary (Marietta, GA 1984)Ghost On The Road2:54

14The Phillistines Jr (Greenwich, CT 1991)Reggie Jackson4:08

15Think As Inkas (Memphis, TN 1988)Palestine One Mile3:45

16The Stems (Fermantle, Australia 1985)Love Will Grow3:19

17Jason and the Scorchers (Nashville, TN 1983)Both Sides Of The Line3:56

18Rhythm Pigs (El Paso, TX 1987)Censorshit3:02

19Oh OK (Athens, GA 1983)Chokoutien2:55

20The Buzz Of Delight (Athens, GA 1983)In Summer3:58

21The Jasmine Minks (London, England 1985)What's Happening1:49

22Biff Bang Pow (London, England 1984)There Must Be a Better Life3:10

1Bad Mutha Goose And The Brothers Grimm (Austin, TX 1991)100%3:06

2The Figures (Minneapolis, MN 1986)It's All Quite Clear3:37

3Sea Of Rains (Athens, GA 1987)Heinous Are The Crimes3:49

4Days Of... (Raleigh, NC 1987)Dreamgirl4:56

5Jonathan Segel (Santa Cruz, CA 1988)Now I Know3:51

6Rhythm Pigs (El Paso, TX 1987)Fire2:23

7Plain Wrap (Fullerton, CA Maybe 1985)Traffic3:12

8Song Dogs (New Orleans, LA 1987)Fire Is Fire5:11

9The Shakers (Nashville, TN)Queen of The Haunted Hell4:02

10Gile (Belgrade, Yugoslavia 1988)Green Onions2:04

11Seminal Rats (Melbourne, Australia 1986)Rat Race2:44

12Seminal Rats (Melbourne, Aust. 1986)Truth Never Lies3:09

13SVT (San Francisco 1981)Secret2:47

14A Picture Made (Somewhere in KS 1988)Little Boy Wisdom3:12

15R Stevie Moore (Upper Montclair, NJ 1984)I Wanna Sleep2:41

16The Jasmine Minks (London, England 1985)Think3:17

17Tom Caufield (Cincinnati, OH Maybe 1987)My Discovery2:32

18Louis And Clark (Los Angeles, CA 1987)Granville3:28

19These Immortal Souls (Australia)Open Up And Bleed3:31

20Angst (San Franciso 1987)It's Mine3:05

21Beat Rodeo (New York City 1984)Without You3:06

22Start (Lawrence, KS 1983)Where I Want To Be3:15

23Sorry (Boston, MA 1985)Far2:12

24Skeleton Crew (England & USA 1986)The Border3:30

1Big Dipper (Boston, MA)Hidden Track6:04

2Allen Ginsberg (With Start) (New York City 1983)Little Fish Big Fish3:36

3Sorry (Boston MA 1985)Deny2:33

4Moon (Chilicothe, OH 1990)The September Song3:01

5The Icicle Works (Liverpool, England 1986)Should I Stay or Should I Go3:04

6Curtis A (Minneapolis, MN 1987)Pearls Of Wisdom4:20

7Ellie Marshall (With Big Dipper) (Boston, MA)Which Would You Rather2:43

8Les Larmes (Los Angeles, CA 1986)Dresden Black1:58

9Housecoat Project (San Francisco, CA 1987)Styrofoam2:25

10Wild Seeds (Austin, TX 1986)A Girl Can Tell3:21

11Crippled Pilgrims (Washington, DC 1985)So Clean4:07

12Sorry (Boston, MA 1985)Rise And Fall1:15

13Start (Lawrence, KS 1983)Lies2:47

14The Connells (Raleigh, NC 1984)Unspoken Words3:19

15Harm Farm (San Francisco, CA 1990)Jersey Devil3:39

16House Of Freaks (Richmond, VA 1989)Pass Me the Gun3:06

17Happy Family (Austin, TX 1984)We Love You We Don't Love You1:56

18True West (Davis, CA 1983)I'm Not Here2:18

19Volcano Suns (Boston, MA 1989)Barricade3:22

20Band of Outsiders (New York City 1988)All Fall Apart3:45

21Blackbird (Los Angeles 1989)Mary's World3:47

22Jeffrey Lee Pierce (El Monte, CA 1985)Fire3:28

23Viv Akauldren (Detroit, MI 1987)Firewater2:34

24Dirty Face (Albany, NY 1988)I Can Hurt Myself2:57

25American Music Club (San Francico 1985)In A Room Above The Club3:49

1True West (Davis, CA 1984)Look Around4:28

2Idiogen (Koper, Yugoslavia 1987)Drive You Mad4:20

3Offbeats (Cleveland, OH 1986)Ain't This Life1:13

4Divine Horsemen (Los Angeles 1984)Frankie Silver3:49

5Happy Family (Austin, TX 1990)Eight Good Reasons2:25

6Hege V (Winton Salem, NC 1987)Hard Way2:06

7The Last (Los Angeles, CA 1989)Assembly Line3:27

8Lord John (Holmdel, NJ 1986)Blue And Green2:30

9Velvet Elvis (Lexington, KY 1988)What In The World2:47

10Mood Six (London, England 1985)I Wanna Destroy You2:33

11Volcano Suns (Boston, MA 1989)Needles In The Camel's Eye2:30

12All (Lomita, CA 1988)I Hate to Love1:49

13The Mighty Mofos (Minneapolis, MN 1986)I Need You2:19

14The Movie Stars (San Francisco, CA 1989)Words2:45

15Jon and the Nightriders (Maybe California 1984)Hit Man3:20

16The Nils (Montreal, Canada 1987)Truce1:44

17The Catheads (San Francisco, CA 1987)Victim2:58

18Miranda Warning (Lowell, MA 1991)Missed Opportunities3:00

19Lord Boy (New York City 1988)War The American Dream1:31

20The Death Folk (Los Angeles, CA 1989)Yellow 10:00

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Bureaucrats

Vocals: Gary (Gaz) Sidwell
Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Mitch Sidwell
Lead Guitar & Vocals: Joe Frey
Drums: Wayne Johnson
Bass: Grant Bucosky

Ottawa's Bureaucrats were formed in the summer 1978.

During that time, there was very little happening on the Canadian music scene. Bands that wrote and performed their own material couldn't get gigs in local clubs. Club owners systematically selected “cover” bands to fulfill their club's musical needs.

Record companies didn't believe original Canadian bands had anything to offer. In fact, they'd rarely venture outside New York to check out new talent.

Eventually, Toronto was seen as a stepping stone to NYC, but even that didn't occur until well into the 80's. But Ottawa...? The city is still seen as a bit of a cultural joke to this day (at least to me, anyway).

But the Bureaucrats helped changed things in the Canadian capital's club scene. Their growing appeal ultimately led to almost all clubs opening their doors to the band, and eventually to the just then emerging “new music scene”.

Over the course of those early years, the Bureaucrats had been busy writing and recording original songs. In total, the band had written about 20-30 songs.

But unfortunately, only half of those numbers got recorded.

They released a number of singles, in 1978/79, along with a 12' EP in 1980. The singles veered from snotty, fuzz-driven punk rock to slightly more polished power pop to neo-reggae. Their 12" EP expands on the power pop sound.

In 1999, Drummer Wayne Johnson and Rhythm Guitarist Mitch Sidwell released a compilation CD titled “roi” (sic). It's pronounced “Roy”, not “Rwa”, like a French king). It stands for “Return On Investment”.

Interesting Sidenote: The Brothers Sidwell (Gaz & Mitch) hailed from Leicester, UK (hence the accent). Their family emigrated to Canada during the British “Nanny Boom” in Ottawa.

Interesting Sidenote 2: Everyone in the Sidwell family (including sister and parents) have entirely different accents.

What are they doing now? Well, Joe is a Chef, Mitch is a Draftsman (or “Draughtsman” for you Brits), Grant is a General Contractor, and Gaz is a Printer on disability.

And Wayne? Oh, he's now Chief of Operations for the International Trade Division of Statistics Canada. So yes, he is a bureaucrat.

Click on the album cover below to download The Bureaucrats' singles, as well as their 12" EP.

Howling At The (Keith) Moon

Two Sides Of the Moon is the only solo album from the original drummer from The Who, Keith Moon. Surprisingly, rather than using the album as a chance to showcase his legendary drumming skill, Moon chose to sing on all the songs. He only drums on "Crazy Like A Fox", "The Kids Are Alright" and "Move Over Ms. L" and plays percussion on "Don't Worry Baby". The album features contributions from Ringo Starr, Harry Nilsson, Joe Walsh, Jim Keltner, Bobby Keys, Klaus Voorman, John Sebastian, Mark Volman & Howard Kaylan of The Turtles, Spencer Davis, Dick Dale and Suzi Quatro's sister Patti Quatro.

Keith Moon was inspired to release a solo album after bandmates John Entwistle and Roger Daltrey both released their own albums. With Pete Townshend soon to write a solo album, Moon decided to make one too. Moon, a big fan of Beach Boys-style surf rock decided to make a cover album, with help from his good friend Ringo Starr. The album was widely considered a joke, with Keith showing his poor singing voice, and received many bad reviews.

Moon was not dissuaded by the reviews, and started work on another similar album. The album was never finished, though. Two Sides of the Moon was re-released by Repertoire Records in 1997, including the finished songs that Moon had made for his next album.

Two Sides... was again re-released by Castle Music and Sanctuary Records in July, 2006, as a two-disc Deluxe Edition, featuring the original 10 songs plus 41 bonus tracks.

Swedish model Annette Walter-Lax, then Moon's girlfriend, appeared on the cover of the album.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

An Open Letter To My Assailants

An Open Letter To The Young Men Who Assaulted Me In Mississauga, Ontario, Canada On The Evening Of Sunday July 20th:

I don't know who you are, but I know this: the two of you must have been having A Really Bad Day. After all, how else to explain the fact that despite my making a legal left-hand turn at an all-way stop, you still decided to be impatient and cut me off.

That little bit of insolence and insouciance I can forgive; for who among us has not already had that happen to them or perhaps have been guilty of said transgression themselves (whether inadvertently or not)?

Still, when you pulled to the side of the road in front of me, and the one of you in the front passenger seat (you know who you are, Mr. Clean-Shaven White Male, Mid-To-Late 20s With The Short-Cropped Hair Wearing An Orange Tee-Shirt) decided to lean out the open door and yell inanities at me while shaking your fist, I decided to let it be. After all: you must have been having A Really Bad Day.

But what stunned me, was that once I passed you, Mr. Driver Man had the nerve to honk at me. I can forgive that too.

But then the two of you decided to follow me...

When I reached my residential destination, I decided to reverse-park in the driveway, know...I wouldn't want to back out into the street in front of you (see how magnanimous I am?). How was I to know that you, Orange Tee-Shirt Passenger, would exit your vehicle and clamp yourself to my Driver's Side door through the open window? (I really need to get that air conditioner fixed.)

Boy, you must have been having A Really Bad Day...

Not only that: you decided to punch me in the head. And not just once, mind you: but twice. It may have even been thrice, but at that point, I wasn't sure. I had other priorities.

Luckily for you, the second head-punch knocked my glasses off. So while I was somewhat disoriented from my near-vision and your Tysons to my head (and I'm not speaking of the Chicken Company), you managed to get away before I had the chance to make note of your license plate.

You know, Orange...I have to admit: at first I thought it was pretty Ballsy of you. Not only to hold on to my driver's side door and punch me multiple times in the head, while I'm backing into the driveway, Really Bad Day, notwithstanding...

But to Road Rage like you did, when in fact it was you and your friend who cut me off.

But then I think, how ballsy can you really be? After all, those olives of yours must be really pickled. How else would you be compensating for some sort of sexual dearth that only you or your mother can possibly explain.

All in all, I doubt very much that you have the guts to turn yourself in. Neither do I have any confidence that you have the intelligence or the wherewithal to pick up a newspaper, let alone even read one. So, perhaps my entreaty is falling on deaf ears.

Nonetheless, I wish to inform you that the police and I have made the determination that you live in the area where said incident took place; after all, there's not much through-traffic on the street. Perhaps some day, our paths will cross again. I can only hope that you would be in a much sprightlier mood.

But I doubt it.

You seem to be the victim of some Unfortunate Love Affair.

Have A Really Nice Day.

ADDENDUM: Surprisingly, the vehicle the two of you were driving/riding in was directly in front of me on the evening of August 3rd. I managed to track down your license plate.

Ontario Vanity Plate #: "MAVERIK"

How do I know this? Because I remember remarking how it was misspelled. Then when Passenger-Dude started yelling at me through his open door, I thought to myself, "Yeah, RIGHT, 'MAVERIK'."

The police have already run your plates. Luckily for you, owner of said car, you have no priors.

But that doesn't mean your friend isn't a bad guy. Because clearly, he is.

I urge you to turn him in.

Hey, you didn't do the right thing by intervening when he assaulted me.

But it's never too late to redeem yourself.

Have a nice day.

A Reasonable Facsimile

Monday, August 18, 2008

Smash The State

A few years ago, I came upon a reference to this "Discography of Canadian Punk" over the Internet. The book reportedly came with three vinyl discs inside.

Call it a Canadian Killed By Death.

(In fact, some of these songs are even found on various volumes of the KBD series.)

Surprisingly, there isn't much information on this book. And I don't know
more, other than the records consisted of 7"s from a bunch of bands, some of whom would attain semi-legendary status in the pantheon of Punk Rock in Canada (Viletones, Forgotten Rebels) whereas other would be relegated to the dustbin of history (Arson, Fits, etc.). Apparently, there were 2 compilation LPs and a compilation 7" all released in 1994.

There's a third disc, that's reported as having been released in 1999.

Allow me to present to you the three volumes within.

1. Arson - Pretty Girls
2. Arson - Coho? Coho!
3. Arson - (Livin' With The) White Folks
4. Wild Fits - Just Lust
5. Wild Fits - Bored Of Education
6. Wild Fits - Sailing To Hell
7. Dry Heaves - Shoot Yourself
8. Dry Heaves - Portable
9. Dry Heaves - I Cant' Puke
10. Rock and Roll Bitches - Someone Could Lose An Eye
11. Rock and Roll Bitches - Broad Daylight
12. Rock and Roll Bitches - Welder's Song
13. Rock and Roll Bitches - Wild West
14. Hot Nasties - The Secret of Immortality
15. Hot Nasties - I Am A Confused Teenager
16. Hot Nasties - Invasion of the Tribbles
17. Sturgeons - Punk Rock Virgins
18. Sturgeons - Forward Disorder

1. Lowlife - Leaders
2. Lowlife - White Lightning
3. Lowlife - Thinking Naturally
4. Spys - Underground
5. Spys - Machine Shop
6. Private School - Money, Guns and Power
7. Private School - Fuck You
8. Private School -I Wanna Know
9. Private School - Sci-Fi
10. Silicone Injection - Kids Are People Too
11. Silicone Injection - Payday on Friday
12 Silicone Injection - Agro
13. Silicone Injection - At War With Peace
14. Silicone Injection - She's A
15. Malibu Kens - Crude City
16. Malibu Kens - Wednesday Morning at 5:00 as the Day Begins
17. Wasted Lives/Big Black Puppets - Divorce
18. Wasted Lives/Big Black Puppets - False Hopes

1. Gentlemen of Horror - Rich Kids
2. Gentlemen of Horror - Overhead Projector
3. Gentlemen of Horror - Rough Hike
4. Gentlemen of Horror - God Knows You By Name
5. Gentlemen of Horror - Bank
6. Bureaucrats - Feel the Pain
7. Gentlemen of Horror - Bank
8. Bureaucrats - Grown Up Age
9. Siggy Magic & the Hey-Hoe Band - Commercials for Free
10. Siggy Magic & the Hey-Hoe Band - Tooth Decay
11. Siggy Magic & the Hey-Hoe Band - Passive and Blue
12. Discords - R.C.M.P.
13. Discords - Dead Cubans
14. Discords - Kill the Rich
15. Discords - N.D.G.
16. Red Sqaures - Ottawa Today
17. Red Squares - Transmitter
18. Reaction - The Kids Arrived
19. Da Slyme - My Only Concern is...
20. Da Slyme - Kickin' Tll I Die
21. Da Slyme - I'm a Piss-eyed Sleaziod
22. Da Slyme - One Chord Punk Song

Saturday, August 16, 2008


Ex-Slow Members In Copyright (The Band): Christian Thorvaldson & Tom Anselmi

At the risk of turning this blog into what my previous one started to become ("All Canadian Punk Hits All Time!!!") I'm still going to provide you with some of the lesser-known lights of Canuck Punk Rock.

And then there's Slow.

I must admit, when they were in their heyday (!) I had neither heard them, nor heard of them ('cause I was into mid-80s Hard Rock and Q107 Classic Shlock -- okay...I still like that stuff).

Anyway, my first reference to Slow came when I was doing internet research on the Canadian Punk Rock scene for a possible documentary. I stumbled upon an online version of one of Chart Magazine's Greatest Canadian Something Or The Other lists for 1996. Slow's I Broke The Circle EP was listed as 17th best Canadian album of all time, in a reader poll. The single "Have Not Been The Same" was named 10th greatest song.

"Slow?" I thought; "What an awful name for a group. Nonetheless, I couldn't help but be intrigued by the descriptor given along the entry for "Have Not Been The Same" (it's offline now, so I can no longer refer to it). Still, I found the song when I purchased a copy of the great Last Call compilation.

So not having ever seen the band live or ever met members of the group, I have to rely on my own journalistic research skills to suss out some form of condensed biography here. As such, if my sources lead me astray, I apologize. Any corrections/additions to the story can be left in the Comments section. goes:

Semi-legendary and utterly destructive, Slow's claim to dubious fame took place at Expo '86 in Vancouver, British Columbia (more on that later). The group consisted of vocalist Tom Anselmi, guitarists Ziggy Sigmund and Christian Thorvaldson, bassist Stephen Hamm and drummer Terry Russell.

Hamm and Russell reportedly had been in a punk band called Chuck & The Fucks. They are said to have played an elementary school concert (reportedly, at Queen Mary Elementary), where many of the teachers forced the children to leave. Of course, that leads one to wonder why an elementary school would book a band called "Chuck & The Fucks", but hey...

Anyway, apparently the rest of the band were previously in an outfit called Sisu (correct me if I'm wrong about this). The two factions got together and formed Slow, which produced the single, "I Broke The Circle", b/w "Black Is Black" in 1985, which you can download by clicking on the image below.

Slow:I Broke The Circle7" (1985):

1. I Broke The Circle
2. Black Is Black

Later that year, they would release a Zulu Records-commissioned Christmas single. It's pretty catchy. You'd rather listen to this than any other X-Mas muzak shit you hear ad nauseum.

Slow: Xmas Single (1985):

Santa Claus Is Back In Town

In 1986, they would release their magnum opus, the legendary Against The Glass; a 6-song EP.

This is the recording they would tour the Pacific Northwest with. It should be noted that the band did this during the mid-to-late-80’s:

They toured Seattle wearing lumberjack shirts and played grungey, 70’s-influenced hard rock infused with punk. S0und familiar? Yes, these guys were the original inspiration for the Seattle Grunge movement of the early 90’s. I once read a story, where Art Bergmann of the K-Tels/Young Canadians (?) was once approached by an American record guy about checking out a new group called Mudhoney. The guy was so excited about this great, brand new music and wanted to know what Bergmann thought about them. Bergmann dismissed the band as poseurs. “So what? We’ve got a group in Vancouver named Slow who are the real thing.” (Or something to that effect, I’m not actually quoting — just typing from memory).

If you should be deserted on a desert island and had to choose just one record to take with you, it probably should be this one.

Click on the image below and understand why.

Slow: Against The Glass EP (1986):

1. Have Not Been The Same
2. Against The Glass
3. Bad Man
4. In Deep
5. Looking For Something Clean
6. Out Of The Cold

Of course, Slow are most famous for a controversial incident which both marred the Expo 86 festivities and effectively ended the band's career. On the opening night of the Festival of Independent Recording Artists, several people who were not attending the concert wandered into the pavilion, witnessed the band's outrageous live show, and rushed out to complain to Expo management. The officials turned off the power, ending the band's set. Hamm expressed his displeasure by mooning the audience, and Anselmi quickly followed suit, also exposing himself frontally.

The band were subsequently detained by the Vancouver police, who considered charging them with indecent exposure. Expo officials initially cancelled the evening's concert, citing security concerns.

Some of the fans in attendance got onstage and refused to leave the venue, others began to riot, and yet another group stormed BCTV's onsite studios, where they protested the concert's cancellation so loudly and persistently that the station had to pull its 11:00 p.m. newscast.

The following day, Expo announced the cancellation of the whole concert festival.

The band subsequently split up. Anselmi and Thorvaldson formed the band © (also known as "Circle-C" and later, Copyright), while Hamm and Russell launched Tankhog.

BTW: This Tom Anselmi is not the same man who was (is) involved with Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment.

In effect: the two Tom Anselmies Have Not Been The Same.

In 2000, three music journalists usurped the title of Slow's most infamous song (rather aptly) for their tome on the Canadian underground scene between 1978-1986.

Do yourself a favour: go get a copy.

BTW 2: Slow's first single was titled, "I Broke The Circle".

Members of the band later formed "Circle-C".

The Letter "C" is a broken circle.


Saturday, August 2, 2008

I'm Still Around...Just Busy.

It doesn't seem like I'm getting much traffic (yet). Oh well. I probably waited too long from when my previous blog went down and rebirthed myself here.

Anyway, as you can see I haven't updated in more than a month. It's been extremely busy for me lately. But I'll be back with more stuff soon.

Just have patience. MC...ZD will be up and running at full strength, eventually.