Tuesday, January 09, 2007

We've Moved!

Because of a glitch in my account when I switched over to the new version of Blogger, I mistakenly believed I'd never be able to get into this site again. So, I set up shop across town at a new site.

Goodbye, Palestinian Light Orchestra, hello Invisible Record Archive. Expect the IRA to continue the dangerous and groundbreaking work started by the PLO. Exposing the public to records that probably are best forgotten.

Thanks frequent visitors for making this site a success. Join us across town for more of the same.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007



For the guy in New Orleans who asked for a reup of OM by John C, it'll take me a few days. I seem to have not saved a digital copy of my vinyl burn. I'll reburn it, probably next weekend or so.


K-razy baby

Slim Gaillard - Laughing in Rhythm

I don't like jazz singers. I've made this rant before, but indulge me. Most of them are so mannered and schmaltzy that I want to vomit after 20 secs. And that Ella-lite scatting that most of them do - eeeeesh.

But there's a couple I can dig. Chet Baker, Patty Waters, Leon Thomas... Mostly, the ones I can stomach are the ones who throw out all that convention and go bonkers. Like Slim Gaillard here.

Slim invents his own syntax, and takes it to the frickin hilt. Lots of stuff about food, some words that didn't come from anywhere, and some flat out incomprehensible gibberish. And it all works. Some of it is fall-down funny.

This is a missing link to a lot of places. I'll bet Tom Waits has a Slim record or two. And probably Flavor Flav. Lord Buckley. If you can find where those three intersect, you'd probably find this record.

Note that there are at least a couple of budget releases with this title (the world of public domain can be like that). This is the single disc one on Verve.


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

PLO returns!

Hampton Grease Band - Music To Eat

The Hampton Grease Band was one of a fistful of bands from the early '70's whose very reason for existing was the wackiness of the Mothers of Invention. Unlike most of these bands, somehow these lucky bastards wangled a major label deal. Of course, they turned in a biscuit so utterly unmarketable that it was the lowest seller ever (supposedly, anyway) that Columbia ever turned out of their music division.

The problem with these Zappa influenced bands is that they confuse absurdity with cleverness. There are points on here where you just want the singer to shut it. Especially when he's reading from the back of a spray can, or reciting the Halifax section of the encyclopedia. But forget about that for a minute.

What really makes this band, and what might take you a few spins to catch, is that the instrumental interplay is phenomenal. These guys can play their asses off. Listen closely to the shifts in time by the drummer, for instance. He's all over the place, without seeming forced.

If you dig the B/S records by Alice Cooper, give this a try. The song construction isn't as tight, but it more than makes up for it with instrumental prowess. Another NWW favorite.

I've seen some of the reup requests, and will try to get to them. I'll be a bit sparse for a while, though. Work, etc.


Monday, December 11, 2006

An Extra E, Just For Class

Thee Midniters

Not The Midniters, but THEE Midniters. This LA soul band was the bad-ass shit, so step back. This may be the best '60's band you've never heard of in your classic rock radio universe.

There are essentially three types of songs on here. One, you've got your uptempo dance number. Land of a Thousand Dances, etc. You've heard a lot of bands do this, few as well. Then, you've got your belly rubbin' slow dance numbers. Think Temptation 'Bout to Get Me, even though they don't do that one on here. Again, they nail these pitch perfect, although I could have done with a couple less on this comp.

It's the third type that really gets me though. Stuff like Whittier Blvd and Love Special Delivery. On these tracks they slide into a nice Chicano / soul hybrid that NOBODY can touch. The closest I've heard is Charles Wright. If you like him, you'll loooove this stuff.

I got to thinking about this one today watching old SNL reruns last night. They had the Stylistics on in 1975, and they were smooth as ever. But they had this edge to them that was sorta punkish, sorta disrepuatable. It reminded me that doo-wop and old soul had a nastiness to it that has largely been lost. But here, it's found.


Viv Loses It

Vivian Stanshall - Sir Henry at Ndidi's Kraal

Warning: This is a largely spoken word album.

With that out of the way, this is where the Viv trail goes cold. No more albums after this. And like everything else he did, it's a damn strange place to end a career.

This record is a comedy sketch about an English colonial officer in South Africa. He's a dimwit, and a racist. Like with Lenny Bruce or Sasha Cohen, he'll push some PC boundaries here, but in the effort to make fun of his own people.

This isn't a perfect record, it meanders quite a bit, and even goes into fully incomprehensible from time to time. Still, it's a good use of three quarters of an hour. I'd venture that it holds up better than pretty much any of the big name comedy records that were so popular at the time.

Record is on Quicksharing, as it is too big for Rapidshare, and only a single track. That means grab it fast - it'll be gone soon.


Monday, December 04, 2006

Dazed and Confused, Baby

Watertown - Frank Sinatra

Add Frank Sinatra and the guy that wrote Dazed and Confused, and what do you get? The worst selling album of the great one's career. And a stone masterpiece.

Jake Holmes was maybe a surprising choice to write a whole song-cycle for Sinatra. Yeah, he'd had a couple of records out on Tower, but neither of them sold (they're genius, though, and finally back in print). He had also done the Genuine Imitation Life record for the Four Seasons, but they weren't Sinatra, for goshsakes.

I've heard this described as Sinatra's "rock" album, but this is no rock. Much more folk. Well orchestrated, as usual. Almost every song on here is a blockbuster. And none of them feel like a big stretch for Frank to sing. Think of it like Frank's Blood on the Tracks.

I'm amazed that this is out of print currently. For me, it's the best Sinatra record from top to bottom that I've heard. I'm particularly a fan of "What a Funny Girl (You Used to Be)". Leave a comment on this one. I'm curious if others love this one like I do.


Saturday, December 02, 2006

Re-up requests

Fred Lane: http://rapidshare.com/files/5703066/Fred_Lane.rar
Richard Pinhas: http://rapidshare.com/files/5712077/East_West.rar

Friday, December 01, 2006

Cpl. Pepper

Peter and Gordon - Hot and Cold Custard

At the butt-end of the 1960's, the beat groups were having the damndest time trying to keep up with changing times. Pet Sounds, Sgt. Pepper, Marshall stacks, what were a poncey-ass duo like Peter and Gordon supposed to do?

Right, they were supposed to make a psychedelic album. If Sgt. Pepper was the Beatles jumping headlong into the brave new world of experimentation, this is Pete and Gordo sticking a cautious toe into the same pool.

That pull between early 60's pop hooks and goofy never-been-experienced-psych-pop makes for a pretty unique record. And pretty weird. And, of course, it sank like a stone. This record is damn near impossible to find.

Miss Jo Anne Lucas of Belknap Dr in Grand Rapids MI, if you are reading, I've tried to contact you about joining the P&G Fan Club, but I've gotten no response to date. C'mon, I'm beggin' you...


An Unconventional Covers Band

Sun City Girls - Def In Italy

This is a cassette tape released by the band in 1984, the year the world ended. I think it is a good introduction to what this band does, because it starts with a semi-recognizable frame of reference. Needless to say, their covers of Black Magic Woman and Precious and Few are pretty far from straight readings. Dark Star, Ghosts, and the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly are closer to the SCG heart.

If you've not heard the 'girls, they maybe the most out-there American band of the last 20 years. They cover a lot of bases - free jazz, ethnic music, punk rock, psychedelia, pure noise, comedy. No surprise, then, that they didn't catch the alterna-rock wave of the late 80's.

Seriously, if you ever see anything by this group pop up at the local record shop, grab it. All of the SCG work, whether original records or CD's or their ethnographical field recordings, are short run releases. You'll probably not get a second chance.

Oh, and grab the other SCG file on the site. It's really brilliant, and I'm disappointed how few of you checked it out. Sorry to proselytize here, but this is music you shouldn't miss.

Track list:
Side 1
1) Black Magic Woman
2) Il Buono, Il Brutto, Il Cattivo
3) Let the Night Roar
4) Shango
5) Kal El Lazi Kad Ham

Side 2
1) Precious and Few
2) Ghosts
3) Spirit In the Sky
4) Dark Star
5) Jungles of Marines on Acid
6) We Will Play One More



A Morsel of Corn In a Pile of Shite

The Pastels - Truckload of Trouble

The period between about '89 and '94 (a couple years in either direction might work, too) are my least favorite years of the recorded music era. That's the period between the changes in sample legality and a real American underground revival. Unless you *really* liked that Pixies shtick, records of that time mostly sucked. Even some of the stuff from that time that I liked (Shimmy Disc, later rap music, bop revival jazz) doesn't hold up so hot today.

There were a couple of winners from then, though. And this is one of them. The Pastels didn't really fit with the time - they make a lot more sense ten years down the road. That's because a lot of the bands from the late 90's learned a lot from them. Yo Lan Tengo and Wilco come to mind.

This is a compilation that starts at the beginning and goes through a bunch of lineup changes and style shifts. Through it all, they have a real easy-going shambling feel and a good way with a pop hook. I'm curious what others think about this one, so do leave a comment.


Potty Mouthed Drunks!

Derek and Clive - Ad Nauseam

Derek and Clive are really Dudley Moore and Peter Cook (or is it Peter Cook and Dudley Moore). They made a string of these improv comedy records during the late 70's while Dudley got famous and Peter got drunk.

Of course, they are both drunk from the beginning of this record to the end (or at least faking it). The sketches on here are all gloriously filthy, whether they are talking about being raped by the school headmaster or calling a horserace.

A little of this goes a long way. You'll probably like it better if you listen a couple of tracks at a time. On the other hand, these make great additions into those mix CD's that you make for your friends at the holidays. Nothing says "Happy Birthday Baby Jesus" like naughty drunken comedy.


Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Astral, Sort of

Tax Free

This is the band Wally Tax put together after the Outsiders. It was probably the best selling thing he ever did, as it had distribution in the states, if not the world.

Clearly, Polydor thought something would come of this. They donated session bassist Richard Davis (from Mingus and Astral Weeks) and John Cale to the sessions. They used Electric Lady right after it opened. All set for greatness to ensue.

It didn't though. This album for me never takes off and flies. Tax was really good at the dark garage psych mood stuff. But he didn't have the most rangy voice. These soft rock arrangements don't play to his strength at all.

The best parts of this album are where they let Richard Davis throw down sub-Astral Weeks bass-led arrangements. That's maybe half the album. The most countryish stuff is really mediocre.

If you haven't heard the Outsiders, start with their two albums. If you've lived with those for a long time, give this a try to see if you like it. I'd love to hear from anyone who does - maybe I'm missing something here.


Going Soon

My rapidshare.de account ends in about a week. Going away will be the following: Lori Burton, Rising Sons, Stud Cole, Merry-Go-Round, New Tweedy Bros, Danny ben-Israel, Wm Burroughs, and Attila. Grab them this week, while you can.

Unless anyone knows how to transfer them from one to the other.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006


Pillows of Cotton For Your Ears

The Smoke

I consider this record, along with the Left Banke and Millenium stuff, to be the absolute peak of the popsike craft. There's just so much here to like - hooks, chipper harmonies, good orchestrations.

Of course, this is namby as hell. Your friends will make fun of you if they catch you listening to it. But piss on them, that pseudo-Ramones fake-Fonzie rockabilly crap that comes out now is shite anyhoo. The Smoke is the real deal.

Not to be confused with the UK Smoke or any of the other Smokes that smoked at the time. This one is the Michael Lloyd version. For those who don't know Michael Lloyd, he's done some bad-ass stuff. Starting with the WCPAEB, through October Country all the way to the Osmonds Plan album (upcoming post, if I can find a decent copy - they're always beat to hell).

Dig the majesty.


Monday, November 27, 2006


You Call That Singing?!?

Patty Waters - College Tour

Patty Waters is a strangely underrated jazz vocalist. When you do hear about her, it's usually in the perjorative context.

I could give two shits about most jazz vocalists - mannered, fake swinging, lounge club crap. The local jazz station runs that stuff 22 hours a day, and I hate it. They should play more Patty Waters.

Patty very rarely sings. Instead, she whispers, she shrieks, she makes noises that sound like Albert Ayler's horn, she makes orgasm noises, etc. There's really nothing else like her. Yoko at her best (and that's frequently, you Beatle fans) hits the scream end, but not the soft stuff.

This won't be for everybody, but if you like outside jazz, this might be a big hit. I'd love to know why she fell out of circulation right after this came out. Anyone?


Sunday, November 26, 2006

We're Gonna Tear the House Down

Memphis Goons - Teenage BBQ

The Memphis Goons should by all rights be completely forgotten. They banged out a few songs onto a cassette tape between 70 and 72, probably while still in high school. None of them dented vinyl, let alone the charts. Even if they had been formally recorded and released, songs like "Tootin in America" probably weren't going to cast a long shadow in a world where Cat Stevens was king.

But one of these guys became a real-live rock critic (Robot Hull, Creem Magazine), and somehow these tapes made it to CD. Hell, they probably even sold 50 to 100 of 'em.

What a CD this is! Recorded in a time when extended solos, political concerns and technical brilliance carried the day, none of that is on display here. Instead, this inhabits a place that was pretty empty at the time - a smart guys who like dumb stuff region later to be staked out by the Dictators and the Ramones. Take that Joey and Handsome Dick, these Goons was here first!

Let's just say that these guys haven't seen fire, nor seen rain. Though they might have seen a lot of monster movies and Three Stooges shorts. These tracks are the audio equivalent of an Ed Wood movie - longer on ideas than technique. In fact, several of them barely hold together at all. This can make it hard to listen to more than a few tracks at once, but do give it a chance.

According to legend, there are 50 or more hours of tapes of songs that these guys wrote. This is almost certainly bullshit. But still, there had been rumor a few years ago about a box set in the works. I'll bet it would be a gas.

I've never seen this stocked in a store, but there do seem to be a few copies around for order on the net. Do order one - if they sell a lot of them, maybe there'll be more.


Re-up series continues

Perry Leopold - Christian Lucifer: http://rapidshare.com/files/4940052/Perry_Leopold_-_Christian_Lucifer.rar

Little Stevie Wright: http://rapidshare.com/files/4946450/Stevie_Wright.rar

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Border Town Psych

Sir Douglas Quintet - Honkey Blues

This is the first record by Sir Doug and the boys after relocating out to the west coast (I think). For my money, it's the best thing that they ever did. And that's saying something, because I'm a big fan.

This record hits a ton of different styles, but never feels like it is showing off. The country, Tex-Mex, free jazz, and psych touches all fall into a pleasant laid-back mix. Unlike a lot of the things we put up for grabs over here at PLO, this isn't a hard record to listen to, at all.


Friday, November 24, 2006

Requiem For the Rockets

The Rockets

The self-titled record by the Rockets is remembered, if at all, as the launching pad for Crazy Horse. Fair enough, in the sense that Billy, Ralphy, and Danny were all in the band. But this record is better than you might think.

It is kind of unique for the time. It has a laid-back country feel, but not too country. It goes off into psychedelic modal stuff, but keeps song structure. It gets kinda bluesy, but not annoyingly so.

The closest thing to this I've heard is another band who became a big deal in the early 70's - that Hour Glass project with the Allmans in it. Both seem to have a foot in the 60's underground and one in the early 70's mega-rock. Both are much better than their reputation, I think.

The secret weapon on this one is the violin playing. It gives the album a cool added dimension. Another unexpected thing is the busy bass playing - by the time he got to Crazy Horse, Billy simplified it a ton.

Make sure you hear Pill's Blues before you make a decision on this one. It's really cool.


Filthy Sacrilege

Sun City Girls - The Handsome Stranger

This is a bit of a diversion from the usual SCG record. Much of it is made up of spoken word narrations by the drummer, who sounds like a real-life version of that character that Tom Waits always plays. These narrations are absolutely filthy, describing a love affair between John Wilkes Booth and John Kennedy.

If you are new to the SCG cannon, they are one of the most interesting and varied bands in America. They cover a lot of different Western and non-Western styles without seeming contrived or dull. They also incorporate punky attitude and a surreal sense of humor without seeming like a goof. This is a good place to get started with them, really.

If any of you jokers has Horse Cock Phephner, can you post it? I've been in search of that one.


Re-up: Armand Schaubroeck - A Lot of People Would Like to See AS Dead

This lp is utter genius. Vinyl rip, CD's don't exist.


Thursday, November 23, 2006

Utterly Average Folk-Rock!

Paul Martin

This self-titled vinyl only release compiles both sides of Martin's two singles, and about 15 late 60's demo recordings. All the Paul Martin you'll ever need in one place.

Paul was a folk-rock singer straight from central casting. Long hair, acoustic guitar strapped on his back, Beatle boots, the whole shtick. Vanguard had a half-dozen just like him at the time.

What makes this one interesting nearly 40 years hence is the arrangements on these songs. His demos are tricked out with little 4-track mini-symphonies. They remind me most of all of Lou Christie records from the same period - hyperactive, heavy on detail, the Bronx woman background singers. Another good comparison would be the Jeff Monn record from about the same time, as they share a nice garagey edge.

Where this stumbles is in the song writing. Look at those song titles. Without Your Love. The Last Remains of Our Love. How Many Tears Must I Cry. Someone get this kid a Dylan rekkid!

I'll give this one a 9 on the obscurity meter and a 5 on quality. For fans of the genre only.


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Re-up series - Keep those requests coming

I'll try to get to a few new ones over the weekend. Here's a couple more re-runs by request. I'm almost to the end of the list.

Viv Stanshall - http://rapidshare.com/files/4424183/Viv_Stanshall-_Men_Opening_Umbrellas_Ahead.rar.html
Perry Leopold - http://rapidshare.com/files/4429722/Experiment_in_Metaphysics.rar.html

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

No Post Today

Rapidshare problems again. Apparently, the servers won't accept Viv Stanshall for who he was. I'll get back to work when I figure it out, or else move back to another provider.

If you are a regular PLO reader, give me a shout out, will ya? Tell me what downloads you've enjoyed (or not), and where you are writing from. I've got a sense that some of you aren't English speakers, but I'm not at all clear how far the message spreads. The fun of sharing is in the discussion, so keep it moving.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Re-up series: Howlin Wolf


Ad Jingle Pop

The Hellers - Singers, Talkers, Players, Swingers, and Doers

This is some seriously whacked shit. In 1968 or so, a California ad exec figured he should put out an album as a calling card for his business. So he pulled out all the weird tricks he could.

How weird? Consider that this is a mix of sunshine pop, audio verite, early synth, tape effects, and corny humor. Consider that it is a really psychedelic record made by the squarest people imaginable.

The synths are courtesy of Bob Moog, a guy who some of you may have heard of. One of the voices in the chorus is McLean Stevenson, about to become famous as the colonel on MASH and the dad on Hello, Larry.

This is a subtle sort of weird, one whose conceptual wrongness will creep up on you on multiple listens. I wouldn't doubt for a second that there is some subliminal programming in here that makes us susceptible to other Heller Company clients. So be careful with this one.


Friday, November 17, 2006

Re-up: Vinnie Bell - Pop Goes the Sitar


Thursday, November 16, 2006

Re-up Series: Debris - Static Disposal

By request. Please leave re-up requests in comments on new posts. I haven't been following comments on posts more than a month old, so I've probably missed 'em, if you wrote 'em. Keep the re-up requests coming.

If you missed it the first time around, this is a proto-punk / electronic mash-up. Sort of in the neighborhood of Chrome or Pere Ubu, if you need a reference point. A Nurse With Wound favorite.



More of the Same

Heldon V - Un Reve Sans Consequence

This is the last of the Heldon records I've got for posting. It's a vinyl rip from the original release. This album is very similar to Heldon VI. AMG and some other sources I've looked at call this the best Heldon record. I disagree - I like the first three the best, because they are not as tied down by the fusion drumming. Still, this is a kick-ass record, and you should download it if you like 70's space rock at all.


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