Those Scott Morgan Band/Scots Pirates re-issues on Easy Action are imminent. The UK label is taking pre-orders for "Revolutionary Action", a two CD compilation of Morgan's first three solo band albums. It's due out on October 20.
Pre-orders are here. Here's the refreshed film clip for the "Detroit" 45 which has been re-issued as an iTunes single.
"Lavish" and Easy Action are synonymous - as the latest box set of raw power from the Pop attests. Ya gets four discs in long box format, derived from live shows and studio outtakes (mostly) by the band that recorded "The Idiot". There's also a booklet written by Kris Needs. Not only an important documentation of a man full of piss and bad manners and on the comeback trail, but an ideal gift for the obsessive Ig-fan in your life.
That most durable of bands from the ‘80s revival of acid punk, The Fuzztones, are primed for a bumper 35th anniversary year with a European tour and a flurry of record releases.
UK label Easy Action is releasing the 5-CD boxset "Psychodrama” any tick of the clock now. It will include several previously out-of-print classics, with some new artwork, new photos, liner notes and bonus tracks. Also included will be a 7” single of the infamous Live with Screamin' Jay Hawkins & The Fuzztones EP, as well as a Fuzztones DVD capturing one of the band's greatest performances. It is available for pre-order here.
Not to be outdone, US label, Cleopatra, will be releasing a 3 LP boxset entitled "Alive & Deadly", which includes the Screaming Jay & Fuzztones 12" EP, "Fuzztones Gonn Primitive" (The Fuzztones & Craig Moore LIVE!) and a never-before-released live show from 1984 featuring several songs the band never recorded.
Last but not least, Germany's Houndgawd label will be re-releasing the classic “Lysergic Emanations” LP on vinyl, including bonus tracks from the 1985 John Peel radio sessions. An August release date is planned.
You just know some records will be good. UK trio Black Bombers summoned an explosive storm-front in the guise of a seven-inch single (“Crazy” b/w “That Kind”) in early 2015 that sold out its first pressing in a week. To say a full-blooded long-player was anticipated is like saying Kayne West has lots of self-confidence.
Black Bombers hail from Birmingham where everything is either black or Black Sabbath. Those local legends might be held in high regard around the globe but apart from a shared love for riffing and volume, Black Bombers are cut from a slightly different cloth.
Brian James recorded this in 1990. That’s post-The Lords of the New Church, when his co-founding of The Damned was a shrinking image in his own career rear vision mirror. It was his debut solo album when it came out on French label New Rose, yet it barely rates a mention in summaries of his back catalogue.
Cue: UK label Easy Action to right that wrong and drop a big, fat vinyl re-issue.
If Brian James had only played on all (and written most) of “Damned Damned Damned” and then pulled a Jim Morrison by growing a beard and a beer gut and bunking off to live in obscurity in Africa, he’d still be remembered as one of British punk’s great progenitors. The guy was equally integral to The Damned's second album, “Music for Pleasure”, too but the band disowns that one for its lame production.
His studio recordings are up and down like a hypoglycaemic's sugar levels but the one place Iggy Pop delivers the goods consistently is the stage. This 1979 taped-for-radio recording from San Francisco in 1979 finds the Pop at the very top of his game with a killer band in attendance.
It’s a re-mastered version of The Greatest Rock and Roll Single Ever Made with the killer “Electrophonic Tonic” on the flip. So what did you think we’d say about this gem? No life is complete without “City Slang” spinning on the turntable. This release is a 45 so we can give it a place on the jukebox as well.
Tuned-down, thuggish riffage played by a Birmingham power trio of veterans, “Crazy” is the sort of song best played at stun volume. Dave Twist’s heavily propulsive drumming recalls Rock Action on the A side. Paint-stripper guitar and a fuck you vocal make “Crazy” glow with more menace menace than a short-changed back-street mugger after chiucking out time.
These guys have doubled as Walter Lure’s UK backing band and although “Crazy” is more Sabbath than “Going Steady,” you can appreciate that Waldo’s foot soldiers are tarred with a similar brush. The B side is even better than the A. Alan Byron locks onto a riff and doesn’t let go. Darren Birch’s simple bass-line throbs away under a ragged vocal. An album of this stuff would go down well.
The band has issued this on their own label but it’s being distributed via Easy Action. Go here for the goods or risk a good thumping.
What do you think we’d say? Sonic’s Rendezvous Band was truly The One That Got Away. It’s a crime they weren’t signed, recorded and backed to the hilt by a major label and elevated to a household name, but rock and roll is seldom fair. That’s why you need to hear everything you can of this great lost band.
Never heard outside a small circle of alumni and fans, this short but sweet five-song set comes from the January 14,1978 show, on the undercard to the Ramones and the Runaways at the Masonic Temple in Detroit. Maybe.
The opening act was un-billed and surviving band members (that would be Gary and Scott) can’t agree that they played it. All but one song (“City Slang”) has remained in the vaults and the label thought it had issued the gig as part of its splendid box set. But that disc wasn’t even from one entire show, if that makes sense.
This is the last musical will and testament of Stiv Bator. Let’s talk about who’s not on this album.
Dee Dee Ramone and Johnny Thunders had convened at Stiv’s Paris flat in 1990 to work up a supergroup, The Whores of Babylon, with the ex-Dead Boys frontman. Contrary to widespread belief, neither of them made it onto the album.
Scratch deep enough and you’ll find an undercoat of Yardbirds below the shiny paintwork of every worthwhile rock and roll vehicle.
We’re talking a group that was part of the original wave of British blues, but took 12-bar and twisted it for their own purposes. The Yardbirds were true progenitors of overdrive and sustained feedback, bringing in eclectic influence like Gregorian chants and Eastern ragas.
All-in sonic escalations (dubbed “rave-ups” by the band) were features of their song arrangements. Does that that ring any bells about contemporary bands all these years later?
Don’t wanna labour the point but the opening years of this century really are turning into The Golden Age of the Stooges, what with the band’s resurrection, the recording of new songs, deluxe re-issues of the first two albums popping out of the pipeline, a live album kicking around and the prospect of a new studio effort. This six-disc box set from UK heritage label Easy Action really does spoil confirmed Stoogeaholics.
The question’s already been posed by a few people whether they really do need yet another compilation of Stooges material. It’s a rhetorical query so I’ll lay out the facts and allow you to judge for yourself.
Let’s kick off by saying that a lot of crap is released under the auspices of Record Store Day. What was once a marketing platform for the little guys, the ever-diminish number of independent bricks and mortar stores, has morphed into another channel for the big boys - they’d the the major labels - to peddle all manner of shit.
There are outtakes and alternative versions ad infinitum buzzing about like flies on sherbet, but RSD more often than not seems to be about exploiting the fetishists’ love of anything on vinyl. "Heavy Liquid" is not amongst that crap.
Here's huge news for fans of Sonic's Rendezvous Band. The first re-issues from The Hydromatics’ back catalogue on UK label Easy Action are ready for pre-order.
The Hydromatics were a ‘90s trans-Atlantic supergroup of sorts, fronted by Scott Morgan (Sonic's Rendezvous Band, The Rationals) and reprising material by Sonic’s Rendezvous Band, as well as fresh originals. Their original line-up included Nicke Royale of Sweden’s Helllacopters and Dutchman Tony Slug (The Nitwitz) and they toured Europe extensively.
This is a band that had power to burn that shone a fresh light on Sonic's Rendezvous Band by doing justice in the studio to material that we'd only heard on dodgy bootlegs.
‘The Hydromatics” is a re-mastered CD version of the group's debut record, “Parts Unknown”, with a stack of live tracks.
“Dangerous” is a LP (with free CD) of studio versions of Sonic’s Rendezvous Band classics like Asteroid B612, Electrophonic Tonic and City Slang. The 10-track LP is supplemented by “Do It Again”, “Mystically Yours” and “Power and The Glory” on the bonus CD. Get them here.
It would be the ultimate irony if Johnny Thunders’ most consistent album came out 24 years after he died. Any sober assessment of his post-Heartbreakers output would deem it erratic but speckled with explosions of brilliance that outshone the lesser moments.
And so it is with “In Cold Blood”, a double CD package from UK label Easy Action that brings together a number of lost threads. It’s not Thunders’ most well-rounded effort - that’s probably still his first solo LP “So Alone” – but it’s still a significant addition to the JT canon.
The original “In Cold Blood” was a double vinyl affair that came out in 1983 while the outlaw guitarist was still breathing. It paired bare bones studio recordings by ex-Stones producer Jimmy Miller to a disc taken from a 1982 UK gig.
Long spoken of and heard by few, this batch of tapes documenting the short but worthy lifespan of Scott Morgan’s post Rationals band Guardian Angel (later known as Lightnin’) has seen the light of day at last. It’s a righteous addition to a starry back catalogue.
Compiler Geoff Ginsberg of Real O Mind Records nails it in the opening words of the liner notes when he observes that rock and roll is music for old people, made by old people. Not only is no-one appearing on this collection of 20 songs aged under 40, some have offspring who have been on the planet for longer than three decades. The clattering of canes and rattling of Zimmer frames never sounded so good.
Let's not get into discussions about how many times this notable, nay historic, 1969 Toronto gig from the nascent Alice Cooper band has been released.Ladies and germs, this is the definitive, speed-corrected version, with correct song titles, spunky pink artwork and a second gig from San Francisco appended, for good measure. Plus, a couple of feathers inserted, if you're lucky.
Toronto 1969 was the notorious Chicken Show where Alice (the man, not the band) threw a live bird into the crowd only to have it tossed back at him...in pieces. Leaving aside the animal rights aspects of this on both sides - being out of your mind on booze is no excuse for throwing a flightless fowl into a crowd of excitable Hoser stoners – you might wonder what the fuss was all about, musically speaking.
It is true that Alice Cooper was the most despised band in L.A. at this stage; soaking in the discordant skronk, seemingly random rhythmic shifts and walls of feedback, it's often easy to hear why.
The Golden Age of the Stooges is upon us and the onetime "biggest joke in SW Michigan" (so described by more than one person who saw them in their original incarnation) now has almost universal critical respect. From derided to celebrated and the latest news is that Easy Action's latest offering, "Popped", does them justice.
Finally, here’s the definitive collection that does the Fuzztones justice.
There have been numerous re-issues, the odd compilation and a tribute record. There’s even a 2CD set of rarities. But packaging the first three of their seven studio albums - plus their debut live EP bulked-out to album length - in a box set, with bonus vinyl and a DVD tossed in - was an inspired idea.
The Fuzztones sprung up in New York City in 1980 and were the vanguard of the garage rock revival wave. Along with the California-based Bomp label, the Cramps and Lenny Kaye’s seminal “Nuggets” compilation, the Fuzztones opened ears to a whole new (old) world of Farfisa organs and distorted Vox guitars.