Just a Suburban Boy

bungalow rockBungalow Rock - Ronny Dap (self released)

Listen up I-94 Barflies - there's a new era of music taking hold in the northern suburbs of Melbourne. It combines dirty rock 'n' roll mixed with old school English punk rock, sung and played by an Australian with no regards to what anyone thinks...

Expiain? Well, it's called Bungalow Rock. A brilliant name, if I do say so myself, and this music was recorded - in isolation - in a suburban bungalow-cum-recording studio and in a rented home's backyard.

Our man Ronny Dap from Melbourne has released this, his second album in 12 months, as the follow-up to the glorious "Root Shoot or Electrocute". If the name is ringing bells, Ronny Dap was the brains behind the punk band The Dope Smoking Morons as well as many others over the past 30 years. He plays everything on "Bungalow Rock".

The Stooges at Goose Lake a landmark release

stooges goose lake 1970 smLive at Goose Lake: August 8th 1970 - The Stooges (Third Man)

Are you kidding me? This is conniption material. A high-quality soundboard recording of the original Stooges, plus saxophonist Steve Mackay, at a time when they were at the primal peak of their considerable powers? It’s proof-positive - not that it’s needed - that the Stooges of 1970 were indeed America’s Most Dangerous Band.

The Stooges were a few months fresh from recording the epochal “Fun House” album and in a mind to confront Middle America on the sort of scale that could only be achieved off the back of substantial record sales.

"Seance" summons oujia board wonderment

seance pamSeance - Professor and The Madman (Fullertone Records) 

Old punks don’t die. They just learn how to play their instruments and make concept albums. Stop right there. Don’t run screaming from the room. Professor and The Madmans “Seance” is an album completely bereft of excess fat and self indulgence. 

This trans-Atlantic band is American singer-guitarists Alfie Agnew (Adolescents, DI) and Sean Elliott (DI, Mind Over Four) joined by Brits Paul Gray (bass) and Rat Scabies, who respectively are current and former members of The Damned. While that's a punk pedigree worth bottline, “Seance” is one diverse pop trip. 

Flowers from a New York City trashcan

ny junk dreamingDreaming - New York Junk (Tarbeach Records)

"The poet's gut reaction is to search his very soul..." -Dee Dee Ramone

"The Gutter Angels up in Heaven/ looking down upon us all/Bless the homeless/Bless the dope fiends/Bless the sidewalks where they fall”.  -Puma Perl 

Covid Sunday, diggin' through old boxes and pulling out stacks of magazines and letters and relics from a long gone and probably mercifully half forgotten, stinky basement, punk past.

Not much misery in this hang

the misery hangThe Misery Hang - The Searchin’ Destroyers (Gimme Some Skin Records)

There’s a tiny clue to its sound in the band name but you’d be a fool to collar these Destroyers as just another bunch of would-be world’s forgotten boys (plus a girl.) There are many more varied and subtle reference points on this Athens, Georgia, band’s debut album than there are scars on His Igness’s leathery hide.

Essentially a mid-life outlet for hazmat technician-turned-keyboardist Drew Finn, The Searchin’ Destroyers aspired to play “psychedelic garage pop punk Tejano spaghetti western surf soul rock music” when they formed three yeasr ago. If that mission statement takes a minute getting your head around, you’re not Tom Hanks on a desert island with only a mute volleyball for company. 

Baby steps on the way to church

baby grandeBaby Grande 1975-77 - Baby Grande (Hozac Archival)

The Brits call it Junk Shop Glam and the name’s derived from the piles of often obscure, sometimes quirky and lost ‘70s glam singles that littered their second-hand shops decades ago and now fetch crazy, collector scum prices. RPM/Cherry Red did a stellar job of bringing much of it to life on their “All The Young Droogs” compilation. 

It’s as good a label as any for Baby Grande, the band in which future founders of The Church, Steve Kilbey and Peter Koppes, cut their teeth in the mid’-70s. Chicago label Hozac Archival has exhumed a tape of studio sessions from somebody’s sock drawer and issued it as an LP. 

I-94 Bar