Flashlite #364: Vinyl Junkyard 16

The Best of Bomp vol 1It’s time for another Vinyl Junkyard special of The Little Lighthouse. In such special episodes I play almost entire LPs that I found dirt cheap somewhere laying in some bargain bin at a record store.

Bomp! An independent LA record label that operated since 1974. In first several years of their existence, they put out 45s with power pop and garage sounds. It was founded by Greg Shaw, who passed away in 2004. They also had some compilation records with the music from their label and today we will listen to two of those records, one called Waves Vol1 from 1979 and other one called The Best of Bomp Vol 1, from 1978. Neither of those records ever saw volume two. Bomp Records had a mission to bring the true simple values of the sixties rock into the seventies, which they felt were getting lost in the commercial pop market. Their influence on underground rock and how to run the business of underground rock will always be remembered.

Paul Collins – Walking Out On Love;
The Marshalls – You Don’t Care;
JJ 180 – ARL7;
The Invaders – She’s The Boss;
Tommy Rock – Dancing The Night Away;
20 20 – Drive;
The Human Switchboard – You’re Much Madder Than Me;
The Flashcubes – Christi Girl;
20 20 – Giving It All;
The Flamin’ Groovies – Him Or Me;
The Poppees – If She Cries;
The Wackers – Captain Nemo;
The Choir – I’d Rather You Leave Me;
Venus And The Razorbades – Punk-A-Rama;
Iggy And The Stooges – I Got A Right;
Snatch – I R T;
The Weridos – A Life Of Crime;
Will Alexander – Kerouac;
Shoes – Tomorrow Night;
The Zeros – Wimp;
DMZ – Busy Man.

Flashlite #363

Lilly HiattToday we check out the new album from Thee Melomen from Zagreb called Chinatown. Also, we have new music from the legendary Pretty Things, All Them Witches and Kropotkins. Lilly Hiatt, daughter of John Hiatt is back with a very good new album (great drum sound and lovely songs on it!). Bernays Propaganda from Skopje also have a new record called Politika and looks at the politics from a female view point. Royal Headache is a new band for us from Australia and their latest album called High rocks. Finally, a tribute to Lemmy.

Slumber Party – No Sleep Tonight;
The Babies – Ride;
Thee Melomen – More of what you got;
The Pretty Things – Old Man Going;
The Pretty Things – Dirty Song;
Royal Headache – Carolina;
Eamon McGrath – Big River;
Soldiers of Fortune – Which;
All Them Witches – Dirt Preachers;
Motorhead – Train Kept A Rollin’;
Hawkwind – Motorhead;
The Rockin’ Vickers – It’s Alright;
The Kropotkins – My Body Lies on the Mountain;
The Kropotkins – The Moon’s Already Down;
Patsy’s Rats – Nowhere Close;
Lilly Hiatt – Off Track;
Bernays Propaganda – Ne sum vekje ubava.

Flashlite #362

David BowieHere we are in our first regular show in 2016. We all heard the bad news – David Bowie passed away and we pay respects today. A less covered exit also happened recently – Brett Smiley, an American boy in the late 1970s who tried to become a glam rock star a-la Bowie, but failed. Still, he left a great album which only came out about ten years ago. Carson Van Osten also passed away. He is from Nazz, a legendary rock band formed by Todd Rundgren in the 60s.

But we also check out some new music. 76yo blues musician Ironing Board Sam has a new record, we introduce Milk Lines from Toronto. We also check out the new Sacri Cuori albums. Kevin Gordon, singer-songwriter from Louisiana is also back with the first new record in three years.


Mott The Hoople – All The Young Dudes;
Ironing Board Sam – I Can’t Take It;
Kevin Gordon – GTO;
Kevin Gordon – Bus To Shreveport;
Nazz – Christopher Columbus;
Brett Smiley – Vava Voom;
Brett Smiley – Kooks;
David Bowie – After All;
David Bowie – Starman;
Milk Lines – Golden Torpedo;
Sacri Cuori – Bendigo;
Sacri Cuori – Side Of The Road (feat- Howe Gelb and Steve Shelley);
Patsy’s Rats – Let’s Stay Up All Night;
Shirelles – Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow;
Evan Dando and Epic Soundtracks – Will You Love Me Tomorrow;
Leslie Grace – Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.

Andy Gabbard – Fluff

Andy Gabbard - FluffAndy and Zach Gabbard are in a hard rocking, jammy band from Cincinnati called Buffalo Killers. As a band, Buffalo Killers delivered a string of five notable albums and both brothers wrote the songs. This year, Andy decided to try something on his own.

As a solo artist, Andy could expand his interests beyond the hard rock of Buffalo Killers. From love songs to a girl to a love song to his record collection, Fluff is a much more relaxing listen than any of the five he did with the band (and that’s not to say that Buffalo Killers records are a bore, au contraire).

Musically, there’s a lot of wonderful guitar solos on Fluff (Super National), great melodies (LYSM, Side B) and even an occasional Syd Barrett knockoff Octoman.

And while More sounds like the best song J Mascis never wrote, guitar riffing from the first minute of the record to the last minute record pays a wonderfully crafted homage to Nirvana. You might say, lots of bands pay an homage to Nirvana, but Andy Gabbard does it in a subtle, understated but loving fashion. I can only think of one band that did it so well: remember Monstrous from Rochester NY and their Mother Nature’s Slaves from 2006? Fluff is that good.

In contrast to its unpretentious title, Fluff stands out as the most well rounded and most thoughtful album of 2015.

Faux Killas – Gravy

Faux Killas - GravyJust when you think rock’n’roll is ready to be sent into history as a past musical expression that has nothing to offer to a new generation of listeners, a band like Faux Killas shows up to prove us wrong. Rock’n’roll is not dead, it just smells funny.

So here they are, four young boys from Memphis, blasting their instruments real loud, producing the catchiest new album of the season without a label, in the best tradition of Memphis rock with their eye view set for future.

The sound is heartfelt and comes straight from garage. It’s a little less wild than Oblivians, but owing equally to the underground and above the ground traditions of Memphis sound. There’s a good sense of humor (song entitled The Boogie is only minute and a half long), hard rocking blues in Leaving You will leave rock puritans full of satisfaction and let’s face it, When You Get Wild is a new generational anthem, only nobody told that yet to the generation.

The band is at the beginning of their discographic activity. The album was recorded in Summer of 2015 and available on the Faux Killas bandcamp page. It’s only available as a CD as of December 2015. They boys are doing it all on their own. I can only hope that they have enough strength and enthusiasm to continue surprising us in the years to come. Rock’n’roll is not dead, this years it smells like Gravy.

Warm Soda – Symbolic Dream

Warm Soda - Symbolic DreamWarm Soda are lead by Matthew Melton from Austin TX. Symbolic Dream is their third album already, although somehow I missed the previous two records. That shouldn’t be too surprising, after the initial local success with Someone For You in 2012, the second album Young Reckless Hearts did not sound the way Melton really wanted, so it received an abysmal support. This year, Warm Soda returned with Symbolic Dream and certainly won my heart with an incredibly catchy collection of 12 songs engraved into a 12″ 45 RPM vinyl clocking barely over the 26 minute time mark.

Well, sometime less is more if it’s self contained and if it’s a finished statement. Symbolic Dream is even more than that. It’s not easy to find a more consistent and more fun album in the entire history of bubble gum rock. What’s nice about a short record, it’ll make you want to come back for more, so hitting that reply button, or putting the needle back to Side A with this album makes a great pleasure.

Tav Falco – Command Performance

Tav Falco - Command PerformanceTav Falco’s book on Memphis Ghosts Behind Sun: Splendour Enigma and Death begins as a story narrated by the city itself, continues with a detailed and informed description of the city’s rock scene and throughout it’s never clear if it’s the city itself telling the story, Tav Falco or his alter ego Eugene Baffle. That’s what Tav Falco really is – uncatchable non-stop art concept.

That unapproachable art concept moved recently from Memphis to Europe. Tav Falco’s Panther Burns are now consisted usually of Italian musicians and it’s been like that for the last two albums. Still, the sound is unmistakably American and Memphis.

Amongst many covers the original song Whistle Blower stands out as a rarely political tune in Tav Falco’s opus. Other original tunes are more similar to the world-trotting mood of the previous album Conjurations. The second life of this exciting album happened during the US tour this year when Mike Watt joined the Panther Burns for the first time. The maestro of bass guitar was so captured by the sound of this album that he wanted to participate in creating it on stage.

The Return of Improvization – Three Great Records from

Soldiers of Fortune - Early RisersSoldiers of Fortune – Early Risers
Improvization in rock music is not an easy thing to do well. Making records has become a serious art business over the years. Careful songwriting, big concepts, thoughtful producers, long practicing, multi-tracks and overdubbing are as important as an electric guitar in rock music. In fact, one could say that the record making process has become a high art, developing in parallel together with the development of rock music. What happens when a performer comes in to wipe that all away? The year of 2015 will perhaps be remembered as a year in which several important albums developed in a completely opposite way than what a book of rock would prescribe.

Arrival of the musical troupe called Endless Boogie on the New York rock’n’roll scene about ten years ago was an important event. The concept was simple: taking instruments into hands of capable musicians and creating a deconstructed boogie that is limited only by the closing times in a bar or physical lengths of a CD or LP. The name was taken appropriately from Johnny Lee Hooker’s album from 1971. The group had put out several albums since then and became a staple of New York live scene. Younger musicians from New York pop bands like Oneida, Interpol and Chavez were sitting in the audience. Over the years, they belonged to a collective of bands that made pop records, backed up by the indie rock press, pretty much creating a new mainstream within the college rock scene. It’s gotta be boring as it sounds…

I don’t know for sure, but I bet Brad Truax, Kid Millions, Barry London, Matt Sweeney together with the help of Jesper Eklow of Endless Boogie wanted a more exciting approach to rock’n’roll when they decided to form Soldiers of Fortune, an ad-hoc improvisational anti-band that has been recording their album called Early Risers over the years, following a concept very similar to the one used by Endless Boogie, only with shorter tunes. Their attitude is hopelessly anti. They don’t want to promote, replay or revisit anything on Early Risers. In the end, the listener gets a uniquely formed diamond that should find a place in any respectable record collection.

Kim Fowley – Detroit Invasion
Kim Fowley - Detroit InvasionRock improvisation hasn’t started with Endless Boogie though. Their fellow New Yorkers, Suicide, employed this type of songwriting since their inception in the late sixties. Kim Fowley, wrote some of his songs in a stream of consciousness fashion since day one. Ben Vaughn had separate albums with Alan Vega and Kim Fowley in the nineties bringing their approach to songwriting to new levels of greatness with the Cubist Blues and King of Saturday Night projects.

Kim Fowley met with Detroit musicians in 1997 and made his legendary Michigan Babylon album. The band had a great time and they reunited in 2012 for two more shows. They also congregated to the studio and had another recording session that resulted in an album called Detriot Invasion that came out this year. It is entirely improvised and it’s incredible how the band and Kim managed to capture an incredibly coherent madness out of the whole deal.

The record is not just a great improvisational rock record, it’s also a struggle with death. Kim Fowley had a surgery in 2012 and went to Detroit one day after he was discharged from the hospital. He passed away this year in February and the rest of the band helped to put this record out only two months after the sad event.

Disciplin A Kitchme – Opet
Disciplin A Kitchme - OpetKoja from Belgrade’s band Disciplin A Kitchme (also known as Disciplina Kičme) has been writing simple rock songs with seemingly endless arsenal of improvised riffs for years. His lyrics are usually one short observation or an impression that often repeats until the song is over. The rest of the tune is his heavy bass riffage, one or two drum sets and horns that are added with a great deal of improvisation and feel for rocking.

This year he is back with a new record called Opet. The new addition to the sound is Igor Đeke from Harp Explosion who not only perfectly fits Koja’s vision, he also successfully emulates famous horn passages of the 80s Disciplina, courtesy of legendary trumpet player Zerkman. So it’s new and old at the same time. Certainly, that sort of sound is more than welcome in the new line up.

Difference between Koja’s results and what we heard this year on Fowley’s and SOF albums is that Koja would come back to his improvised tunes on his live shows. His other project called Fank+LastiÅ¡ has an even freer form. Still boogie, jams and good quality stream of consciousness unexpectedly, but clearly marked great albums of 2015.

Flashlite #361 – The Best Albums in 2015 (Part Two)

Best of 2015Today we continue our traditional review of the best records at the Little Lighthouse in the past year. The top 10 is here. We have double number one position, so two albums share the title of the best records this year. I thought about a lot which one to pick and decided to split the title between Andy Gabbard’s Fluff and Faux Killas Gravy. Gabbard’s Fluff is a well rounded, carefully thought-out record (although you may think the opposite from the title) and Faux Killas are a young new force from Memphis that blasted their debut as if they have rock’n’roll in their fingertips. The rest of the list follows bellow and then, check out the playlist for the top 10 if you have time. Oh, yeah… happy new year to everyone!!!

1 Andy Gabbard - Fluff
1 Faux Killas - Gravy
2 Warm Soda - Symbolic Dream
3 Kim Fowley's Psychedelic Dogs - Detroit Invasion
4 Tav Falco - Command Performance
5 Thee Oh Sees - Mutilator Defeated at Last
6 Disciplin A Kitchme - Opet.
7 Danny Kroha - Angels Watching Over Me
8 King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Paper Mâché Dream Balloon
9 Datura4 - Demon Blues
10 OBN IIIs - Worth a Lot of Money
11 Bernays Propaganda - Zabraneta planeta
12 Giant Sand - Heartbreak Pass
13 Baddat For Trubbell - Tva sjundedelar av ett liv
14 Cairo Gang - Goes Missing
15 Soldiers Of Fortune - Early Risers
16 Zerodent
17 Fuzz II
18 Low Cut Connie - Hi Honey
19 Sonny Vincent and Spite - Spiteful
20 Ghost - Meliora
21 Vlasta Popić - Kvadrat
22 The Yawpers - American Man
23 Paul Kelly - The Merri Soul Sessions
24 The Bevis Frond - Example 22

Sweet Apple – Under the Liquor Sign;
Datura4 – Gravedigger Man;
King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard – Dirt;
Danny Kroha – Gloryland;
Disciplin A Kitchme – Hendrix Hendrix;
Thee Oh Sees – Poor Queen;
Tav Falco – Bangkok;
Kim Fowley’s Psychedelic Dogs – Detroit Is Electric;
Warm Soda – Find That Girl;
Andy Gabbard – Home Suite;
Andy Gabbard – Dreams;
Andy Gabbard – Lonely Girl;
Faux Killas – When You Get Wild;
Faux Killas – Dead Man;
Faux Killas – Get You to Work.