Friday, June 4, 2021

Who Do You Love


 











Spotlight on an old folk ditty today, lovingly reinterpreted by Anaïs Mitchell & co. Green Rocky Road is an outtake from Bonny Light Horseman's selftitled debut, which still gets plenty of airplay at FTSOTS headquarters. Got it yet?

Bonny Light Horseman - Green Rocky Road

Monday, May 31, 2021

Everybody's Doing It


 











Just a quickie on a Monday with the totally whacky Marsha Gee. Quack quack...

Marsha Gee - The Peanut Duck

Friday, May 28, 2021

Down The Road

 












Jerry Jeff Walker sings Guy Clark. Always a treat.

Jerry Jeff Walker - L.A. Freeway

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Out Of Songs

 










It's 1973, and Wallace Daniel Pennington from Vernon, Alabama, better known as Dan Penn, soulifies a John Fogerty classic. Nice try for sure, but hey, if you're nobody's fool you could have realised that the Creedence version just can't be beat.

Dan Penn - Lodi
Creedence Clearwater Revival - Lodi

Friday, May 21, 2021

Play For Life


 










Dave's Picks #38? Sure-fire winner of course. The Dead could hardly do no wrong back in '73, and this inspired and fine-sounding registration of a gig in Uniondale, New York shows why. Hey now, just check that divine take on their delicious mini Western Jack Straw below to hear what I mean.

Grateful Dead - Jack Straw (live Uniondale '73)

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Another One

 












The twelfth volume in the triptastic Brown Acid series has finally appeared, so lock up your womanfolk -  always wanted to say that - and dig this new batch of overblown, ultra-obscure rockers from the early seventies if you dare.

Shane - Woman (Don't You Go)

Monday, May 17, 2021

Drift Away


 











Just drums and shimmering guitars, courtesy of Eric Hardiman (Burnt Hills) and Michael Kiefer (Twin Lakes). Together, they go exploring in a psychedelic postpunk stylee. If you've recently grooved to the Gunn-Truscinski Duo, to name but one example, First Encounters is probably right up your alley.

Spiral Wave Nomads - Radiant Drifter

Saturday, May 15, 2021

Did We Fly


 











This recent all-acoustic collection of live Townes tracks is worth it for a gorgeous rendition of his immortal Waitin' Round To Die alone. He can't remember for the life of him where the posse drags him back to though and flufs the Muskogee line, which is actually kinda funny. Here goes.

Townes Van Zandt - Waitin' Round To Die (live)

Is there a sadder song in his oeuvre? Since you ask, oh yes there is... And it's quite possibly the saddest song ever in my book, full stop. The story of Caroline, daughter of a miner. "Seemed to me that sunshine walked beside her..." Take it away, maestro.

Townes Van Zandt - Tecumseh Valley (live)

Friday, May 14, 2021

Writing On Your Walls


 











Hurrah, for I'm finally getting my first anti-Covid jab later today. Looks like them scientists can help you after all...

Yabby You - Plague On The Land
King Tubby - Dub Plague
Tommy McCook - Plague Of Horn

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Really Sure

 












As a Feelies aficionado, this Scottish/Spanish collaboration between Andrew Taylor and Gonzalo Marco immediately caught my eye. And although that Feelies-influence is actually not all that obvious, you'd be daft not to give Songs From Another Life a listen if sparkling jangly powerpop à la early dB's is your thing.

The Boys With The Perpetual Nervousness - I Don't Mind

Monday, May 10, 2021

A Sunbeam




 









Fancy a dreamy, enticing Brazilian trip this fair Monday? Thought so.

My Magical Glowing Lens - Raio De Sol

Friday, May 7, 2021

For Your Eyes Only


 











Evil, blue, starry? You name it, we've got it, so here's another eye-opening six pack. Eye-catching artwork by the all-seeing Tinca. Her fine exhibition in Belgium is still going by the way: do pay a visit if you can. Now groove to the eye, my amigos da musica.

Clifford Jordan & John Gilmore - Evil Eye
Young John Watson - I Got Eyes
Lenny Drake - Love Eyes
Psychotic Turnbuckles - Groove To The Eye
Kendra Smith - Stars Are In Your Eyes
T.C. Matic - Middle Class And Blue Eyes

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Just Jonesing

 












Craving some good ole country love? All you need is the Possum, singing his particular version of the blues. Here's a couple of current faves.

George Jones - She Once Lived Here
George Jones - She Loves Me (Right Out Of My Mind)
George Jones - She Needs Me

Monday, May 3, 2021

Dub Mining


 







Were these slowcore kids inspired by reggae and dub or what? It's in the spaciness, or whatever you want to call it, of their sound. You can hear it in the drumming too, while a mouth harp even acts as a melodica of sorts. This is a track from their fine fine Placer Found debut (2000), re-released last year. Have a listen, while I'm off to hunt down a copy of follow-up Let Us Garlands Bring.

Early Day Miners - Prospect Refuge

Friday, April 30, 2021

To See





















"Let them see, let them hear..." Presenting an all-seeing six pack for your listening pleasure. Visionary illustration by our resident artist Tinca, who's got a prestigious exhibition coming up soon by the way. Go see it if you can.

Danny Dill - The Eyes Of Death
Solomon Burke - Beautiful Brown Eyes
Erroll Holt - Who Have Eyes To See
Crystal Syphon - Marcy, Your Eyes
Help Yourself - Your Eyes Are Looking Down
Suburban Lawns - Green Eyes

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Walk With Me

 












Do yourselves a favour and head over to Save Your Face for an extensive look at the early live days ('82-'83) of the Dream Syndicate, expertly and lovingly compiled by Matthew Specktor. Wild guitar duels and unexpected covers a specialty, even when they don't know all the words and their souls are possessed by Jackson Browne. The stuff of legend.

The Dream Syndicate - Folsom Prison Blues (live '83)
The Dream Syndicate - Morning Dew (live '83)

Monday, April 26, 2021

Red As The Rose


 











You're probably familiar with Rain And Snow, for it was often covered by the good old Grateful Dead, retitled Cold Rain And Snow. But have you heard the version Garcia & co based it on? Here's that timeless beauty, as performed by Appelachian banjo player Obray Ramsey.

Obray Ramsey - Rain And Snow

Friday, April 23, 2021

Master Plan


 











It's a relatively small step from Denmark to Sweden, where psychedelic vibes run wild, too. Take Djinn: a collaboration between members of Goat and Hills, so quite the pedigree. No wonder their brand new Transmission record grooves and grooves. Only when they venture too deep in Ayler/Pharoah territory do they lose me, as that's frankly above their paygrade. But altogether, their exciting and remarkably organic-sounding mix of free jazz fusion, psychfolk, krautrock and everything in between made jaws drop around here. One for the end-of-year lists for sure.

Djinn - Creator Of Creation













And while we're on the subject of Hills, their hypnotic Frid album from 2015 remains in heavy rotation at FTSOTS headquarters. Much recommended if you like your psych way krauty, if you know what I mean.

Hills - Kollektiv

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Danish Delights

 












The Danish sunship explores the galaxy again. As expected, Wildfire's yet another heavy trip, but less jazzy this time, as if Quicksilver's Happy Trails replaced Sun Ra's Space Is The Place on their collective turntable. A step back? Maybe so, and Another Shape Of Psychedelic Music remains my favourite of theirs. Still plenty to enjoy here though.

Mythic Sunship - Redwood Grove













And let's stay with the Danes a while longer, by way of southern California: last year's collaboration between Jonas Munk (of Causa Sui fame) and Brian Ellis definitely deserves to be heard, too. A modern day Bitches Brew? That maybe too much praise, so let's just say that if innovative and heavy fusion is your thing, you gotta dig their San Diego Sessions.

Ellis/Munk Ensemble - Electric Saloon

Monday, April 19, 2021

Ballad Time

 












Fort Lauderdale meets Cape Town, or: mister Shepp teams up with mister Brand. What can possibly go wrong? 

Archie Shepp & Dollar Brand - Left Alone

Friday, April 16, 2021

Where-o?


 











Wild and wacky nederbiet thingy from '66. Channels the Troggs, Abraham, and mustard. Flute solos a specialty. Solo! Those were the days, pop kids.

The Eurfians - Waaro?

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Everything Is Fine


 











Every roots reggae lover worth his ganja should at least own mighty Mr. Zukie's MPLA, Man Ah Warrior and In Dub albums, but this compilation of tracks he produced for his own Stars label is not to be missed either. Here's a couple of sparkling highlights, my brethren.

Linford Nugent - Black Princess
Ronnie Davis - No Weak Heart

Monday, April 12, 2021

Desert Triple


 











Could do with some peace and quiet today, so let's head down to the desert for a while. That special atmosphere, that's what we're after.

Ikue Mori with Robert Quine & Marc Ribot - Mojave
Marisa Anderson - Mojave
SUSS - Mojave

Friday, April 9, 2021

Have You Heard


 











The mighty Moe plays that immortal Bo beat. Goes down a treat.

Moe Tucker - Bo Diddley

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

And There


 











Remember that fine Harry Taussig take on ye olde Dark Town Strutters Ball I posted here recently? Got another cool version for y'all, from 1976 this time. Rings like a bell.

Woody Harris  - Darktown Strutters Ball

Monday, April 5, 2021

Serious Business



Time for Terlazzo today. This much recommended '83 debut never made it to compact disc, while vinyl rips found on the web were often scratchy affairs. The good news? Just discovered that the moving Honor Among Thieves is available for download - and in impeccable sound quality at that - at the man's Bandcamp page, and for a name-your-price at that. Right, what are you waiting for?

John Terlazzo - He Wears His Black Heart On His Sleeve

Friday, April 2, 2021

From The '71 Vaults


 











Very welcome of course: a crisp new live registration from the Allman heydays. Sax player Juicy Carter sits in on most songs, and brother Duane's cooking as usual. Historical, but be warned: if you can't stand a bit of tape hiss, better save your money.

The Allman Brothers Band - One Way Out (live Austin '71)













Meanwhile back in Shakey country, the archives are opening like there's no tomorrow. The aptly named Young Shakespeare is the most recent treasure: an intimate solo gig at the Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford, Connecticut. Lovely stuff in pristine sound quality.

Neil Young - A Man Needs A Maid/Heart Of Gold (Medley) (live Stratford '71)

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Holy Holy

 












As it happens to be Semana Santa around these parts, a holy six pack seems just the ticket. Come feel the spirit, folks.

Brother Clark + his Band - Send The Holy Ghost
Prentice Moreland - Holy Mack'rel
The Triffids - Holy Water
Earth & Stone - Holy Land Of Home
Sun City Girls - Holy Ground
God's Band - Come Holy Spirit

Monday, March 29, 2021

Dream You There


 











During lockdown, Nick and Warren didn't sit still for long. Instead of lamenting their twice-cancelled world tour, the duo (no other Bad Seeds present, no guitars either) decided more or less on a whim to record a fresh batch of songs. Ellis went in for some heavy orchestrating, at times almost claustrophibically so. Cave decided to wear his most dramatic mask: he's really in your face here. But after a couple of spins, I'm still not sure if Carnage really is my vaccine of choice.

Nick Cave & Warren Ellis - Albuquerque

Friday, March 26, 2021

Knocked Out Loaded






 







Down the road down the road... What's your fave version of the immortal Junco/Junko Partner? From the '51 original by James Waynes onward, here's only a tip of the iceberg.

James Waynes - Junco Partner (Worthless Man)
James Booker - Junco Partner
Nobody's Children - Junco Partner
Dr. John - Junko Partner
The Clash - Junco Partner
Chris Bailey - Junko Partner

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Want To Be There

 












You've got yourselves an invitation to the famous Dark Town Strutters Ball. American Primitive guitar avant-la-lettre, courtesy of the great Harry Taussig. From 1965, and never going out of style.

Harry Taussig - Dark Town Strutters Ball

Monday, March 22, 2021

Far Out

 












Lonnie Liston Smith: quite the resumé. Played with Art Blakey, Miles, Roland Kirk and Pharoah Sanders. Here he travels the spaceways in fine style. Buckle up and take that trip.

Lonnie Liston Smith & The Cosmic Echoes - Astral Traveling

Friday, March 19, 2021

Almighty


 

Noel Ellis, son of 'godfather of rocksteady' Alton, carried on the reggae family tradition overseas. From 1983, his self-titled debut remains arguably the finest roots record ever to come out of Canada.

Noel Ellis - To Hail Selassie

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Fly Away


 











Finally officially available: Neil & the Horse's 1990 tour warm-up gig at the intimate Catalyst Club in Santa Cruz. Which meant not only the first live outing of a bunch of songs from the just released Ragged Glory album, but also the first ever performance of Zuma's intense Danger Bird. Strap in, here we go.

Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Danger Bird (live '90)

Monday, March 15, 2021

No Consolation

 












The demos part is what makes Richard Hell's Destiny Street Complete really interesting. Here's the best of the batch, a cool song in typical Hell style with fine fine guitar work by the late great Robert Quine -somewhat surprisingly - Ivan Julian. "You know the power only comes from your dread..."

Richard Hell & The Voidoids - Smitten

Saturday, March 13, 2021

On The Side

 












Spotlighting some recent side projects today. First up: Bardo Pond offshoot Vapour Theories takes an instrumental trip and lives to tell the tale. Noisy, but kinda ambient all the same. If that floats your boat, go here to get it. Pleasant jangle pop with falsetto-ish vocals and obvious Flying Nun overtones more your thing? Check out Painted Shrines, featuring Jeremy Earl of Woods fame, there.

Vapour Theories - High Treason
Painted Shrines - Heaven And Holy

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Shake It


 











Exactly one year ago on this day, I attended my last live rock gig: Modern Nature on stage in the intimate Sala Vol here in town. Good night out, but the writing was already on the wall of course. Just a few days later, lockdown started and all venues had to shut up shop. Here's hoping they won't all have closed for good - mayday mayday, one of my faves already did - by the time we're finally allowed back in.

Modern Nature - Mayday

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Desert Steel


 











Concerto for guitar and drum machine. Bobby Lee hails from Sheffield and may be as British as they come, but he's got that JJ Cale down-in-the-desert choogle thingy down pat. Atmospheric as hell, and out now on the always interesting Tompkins Square imprint.

Bobby Lee - Impregnated By Drops Of Rainbow

Monday, March 8, 2021

Darker Shade

 












A welcome reissue of a lofi rarity by the guys of the Drag City label. It's the year of 1969 and we're in Portland, Maine, where Bill Stone and pals record his first (and only) album. Sometimes dreamy, sometimes jazzy, slightly psychedelic, and always interesting. Nice find.

Bill Stone - Purple

Friday, March 5, 2021

Solar Beat


 











Along with Television, Pere Ubu has long been my fave seventies artpunk combo. Unique sounding band to say the least. So the appearance of a live set from 1977, lofi as it may be and with two songs incomplete, still feels a bit like heaven. Download it for a steal here.

Pere Ubu - Heaven (live '77)

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Count The Stars


 











Just got the sad news that reggae legend Neville O'Riley Livingston, better known as Bunny Wailer, passed away yesterday at 73. The Blackheart Man was the last surviving co-founder of Jamaica's legendary (Wailing) Wailers: Bob Marley left us in 1981, Peter Tosh in '87. Miss him, my brethren.

Bunny Wailer - Dream Land
Bunny Wailer - Rise And Shine

Monday, March 1, 2021

Think A Likkle














Two glorious extended mixes of prime Culture. Double roots reggae fulfilment, my Jah people.

Culture - Innocent Blood (extended)
Culture - Poor Jah People (extended)

Friday, February 26, 2021

Hurry Hurry


 











Den Nya Skivan may sound exotic to non-Swedish ears, but apparently just means 'the new record'. Oh well. What really matters is that Stockholm's psych royalty easily maintains its high standards here, warming our hearts with four hypnotic fresh jams.

Kungens Män - Uppskjutet Uppskjutet

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Moyo Workin'

 










The Kikagaku Moyo touring machine has temporarily been forced to a halt, which makes two new live documents especially welcome. The first one, Live At Levitation, was recorded in Austin in 2014 and 2019. Hypnotic riffs and motorik beats galore, showing off just how well these Tokyo boys have gotten their routine down through their relentless gigging. The second one, appropriately named Deep Fried Grandeur, is even more spectacular. From a special festival collaboration with Ryley Walker in Utrecht in 2018, it's an intergalactic, sitar-heavy monster jam between two dark stars, yours for a cool name-your-price at Bandcamp.

Kikagaku Moyo - Gatherings (live 2019)

Monday, February 22, 2021

At God's Table

 












Two dear dear orphan girls. Long believed this was actually a Carter Family composition, but no. Huge compliment though... For me, miss Welch wins on points, as her version (the original, and the first song on her first album to boot) is the purest of the two. Close call, I'll give you that.

Gillian Welch - Orphan Girl
Emmylou Harris - Orphan Girl

Friday, February 19, 2021

Tell The People





 





Just got the sad news that the great U Roy has left us. The pioneer reggae toaster from Kingston, Jamaica, real name Ewart Beckford, was 78. I was lucky enough to see the Originator perform one time in a small club, and boy was he on fire. Miss him.

U Roy - Wake The Town
U Roy - Chalice In The Palace