Fast 'n' Bulbous — Pork Chop Blue around the Rind
(Cuneiform Rune 205, 2005, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2005-09-01
Led by former Beefheart guitarist Gary Lucas (Doc at the Radar Station, Ice Cream for Crow) and saxophonist / arranger Phillip Johnston (NYC downtown scene regular), Fast 'n’ Bulbous is essentially an instrumental Captain Beefheart tribute project for three piece rock band plus four-piece horn and sax section. As one might imagine, this is one wild ride, but a fun one, as these interpretations take the Captain’s music in a new direction and give them a new life, not to mention the one original track by Johnston and Lucas that sounds like it could have been written by the man himself. The spirited performances here definitely owe a lot to the downtown sound, thanks to Johnston’s brilliant and often intentionally chaotic horn arrangements, yet it’s Lucas’ bad-ass slide guitar that cements the connection with the original versions. While one might suspect that with all the the saxes, trumpets and trombones this project might get lost in jazzland, but the rhythm section of Richard Dworkin (drums) and bassist Jesse Krakow keep this project planted firmly in rock territory. Being more of a Beefheart purist (where’s the harmonica and vocals, man?) it took a few runs through before I was tuned into what these guys were up to, but further listens were increasingly rewarding. Definitely an original take on some of the best music ever made.
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more