Sunday, 27 July 2014

The Cramps, Ye Nuns.........New releases.

There have been some pretty amazing releases and boots in the last couple of months, not least a damned fine 7" boot from The Cramps featuring a couple of tracks that to my knowledge at least, haven't appeared on vinyl or cd before. The A-side is a cover of Love's 'My Flash On You' (which was also a long standing favourite of The Sting Rays), with the B-side being another cover, Nat County and The Braves 'Woodpecker Rock'. After going through the set lists available it would seem that the a-side was taken from a San Francisco show in 2006 some time and the b-side could well be taken from their new years eve 1988 show at the Fillmore in San Francisco. This track can be found on a an American semi-legit DVD of the show (Vampiro's video vault) which came out god knows when. This 7" is out on 200 copies only, a 100 yellow and a 100 black vinyl.

Expect to see silly prices on Ebay.
Also coming to light in the recent weeks has been a limited repress of The Cramps most expensive if not rarest official 7". The French release of 'Garbageman' which regularly sells for in excess of 100 Euros a pop! According to the vendor, 60 copies on gold vinyl and 150 copies on black (I got mine at Discogs).

 Now this has easily got to be one of the best 'modern' garage releases in many a year.....Ye Nuns 'Nun More Black' without doubt this baby is set to be a classic, there's nothing really new here as it's an album entirely of Monks covers, BUT it's brilliant !  Basically an all girl 'tribute' band to The Monks and it works so well, not deviating too much from the original formula, it manages to come across as fresh with the raspy female (Lolo) vocals adding a totally unexpected dimension to the sound.    It's all there !  the delirious banjo, the pounding drums, the fuzzy basslines and general sense of controlled chaos, the same sensations you get when hearing 'Black Monk Time' for the first time.
Don't take my word for it........... I particularly dig their rendition of 'Love Came Tumblin' Down'

You can hear the entire album here:

Almost as good as the original...In a class of it's own.
Where it gets sticky is that this was released in the middle of June (2014, for those of you watching on 'Dave') on ONLY 300 vinyl copies and with no CD release this will be like Rocking Horse Droppings by Christmas !
For those of you that live within easy reach of London (UK), these girls gig regularly so you shouldn't have much trouble seeing them soon enough, hopefully they'll play a little further afield too for the rest of us.

We're all Monks...Even when we're Nuns !
Here's the link to their website:

There's a great review of one their gigs by none other than Eddie Shaw himself (Original bass player in The Monks) the posts section of their website, well worth the read.

Good luck getting your hands on this.

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Marcel Bontempi.........Rock 'n' Roll Gentleman !

For those of you that haven't yet sampled the musical delights served up by Marcel Bontempi ? You are in for a treat. The half Catalan, half German frontman of The Montesas (60's Beat, Rockabilly with a healthy dose of Boogaloo) has released a slew of (7 to date, with more set for release) 7" EPs and singles over the last couple of years, every one of them a killer diller ! Off on a totally different tangent from The Montesas (more about them another time), what you get is authentic Rock'n'Roll, no over production and no slavishly following a formula.........unless you call R'n'R a formula.

   The arachnophonic sounds of Mr Bontempi   Catch the video !

Musician, part-time snake oil salesman and illustrator, Marcel is a busy guy. When not gigging with the band or playing in his own right, he paints and has exhibited throughout Germany as well as further afield, his style (although I hate pigeonholing) would be firmly retro, reminiscent of  40's-50's American animation and cartoonesque (publicity ?) images , often with recurring themes such as apes, musical instruments and the like.

 Taken from the Art Garage Sale, Zurich 2013
You can see more of his works by hitting this link:

Can't live without some this ?  Contact him directly here:
In order to avoid starvation and pay the bills he plys his trade as a graphic designer and illustrator, providing his services in the main to the European retro-scene. Event organisers, record labels, children's book publishers to name but a few.

It's that Ape again !
But now, back to the music, it's why we're here after all! Similar to the recurring imagery running through his artwork, the releases to date are also thematic, whether it's an EP about frogs (Rufus Thomas meets Billy Pitcock meets The Cramps) or a devilish 4 track (Old Mad Witch, Train of Sin, Race with the Devil and Train to Satanville) all fantastic versions with the inimitable Bontempi stamp.

Check this out:  The great original of  'Do the Frog'    what was he thinking ?       
And here it is again after being given the Bontempi treatment:

The latest slab of wax (as of 19.07.17)
Continuing with the scary subject matter, the latest release re-interprets the classic American folk tale of a blood thirsty Hessian mercenary....Now, I'm a fan so objectivity goes out the window but the guitar on the title track is absolutely brilliant, for some reason makes me think of Gin Gillettes 'Train to Satanville' which he also covered and the use of the echo over the vocals in German at the end is chilling and rather apt as the Hessians were Germans (Useless pub quiz info No1).
With no LP/CD releases to date, rumour has it that there will be a compilation out this year collecting cuts from the EP's and singles (All the releases came out as editions of 500) as well as some alternate versions and maybe some unreleased's hoping, that way you won't have to pay silly money on Ebay in order to get these babies.

If you like your tunes authentic and original sounding, real R'n'R, Rockabilly (with a hint of hillbilly and swing for good measure) ? Then you should own have no excuse.

New single due out on Migraine records ( in the coming months and it's about 'Wolves' this time !

New Dr Bontempi's Snake Oil Co single out on Squoodge Records ( in the coming 6-8 weeks and an LP to follow on the same label in Autumn

Hillbilly hoedown from the good Dr and Co.

What are you waiting for ?

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Compilation. If I was to make a comp.

These things are always subject to whimsical fancy and whatever is the flavour of the moment but I always find myself coming back to these tunes.....There's an enormous amount of material out there and while the 60's garage oficianados comp almost anything these days, there has been very little in retrospective garage/trash from the the 80's, 90's and 00's put out on comps. So here is my take on what would be a good compilation, in no particular order as I love 'em all.

Any comments most welcome.

I've put youtube links where applicable for those of you who may not have heard any of the cuts before.

The Vibes.          Egyptian Thing.   John Peel Session from 1985.

The Psychotic Petunias.  Surfin Bird.    Mayhem Records   1978.

The X-Men.    Do The Ghost.      Creation Records  1984.

Duane Ripley & His Go Go Set.  Revenge of the 50 Foot Go Go Girls.  Barbarella Recs 1986.

The Linkers.   Suzy.     Weed Recs 1994.

The Slammers.   Low Low Low.    Swamp Recs   1986.

The Juanitos.   Oh, Girls, Girls.      Larsen Recs   1991.

The Dukes.    She'll Be Mine.          Kavern 7 Recs     1987.    

The Shockwaves.   Big Bad Mescalin.     Unreleased Demo   1987.

The Golden Horde.    The Curse.       Hotwire Recs   1984.

The Purple Things.    Insect Bones and the Astronaut.   Media Burn   1985.

The Bottle Ups.       Fatback.       Amigo Recs   1985.

Emptifish.        Surfboard.         Crystal Recs     1985.

Melody Massacre.     Tornado.         Soundwork Recs   1986.


Friday, 4 July 2014

The Dirteez.........Cramps a la Francaise !

The Dirteez were, still are ? the nearest thing that France got to having their own version of The Cramps. Formed around Clint Lha Zar and Wild Cat Lou (I'm guessing that's not her real name) in Paris around the mid 80's.

  The Dirteez circa '88-89         

They started off well with a great single released in 1988 called UFO with Mad Boys on the flipside (Krezimikroid was the label, probably self produced), this was followed up with a second 7" on French label 'Go Get Organised'  Gypsy Rose Lee/The Beast inside. A lovely little ditty about a stripper ! There's a bit of confusion around this as I think the single wasn't officially released and possibly came out as a promo for their debut album (Anyone know for sure, feel free to let me know) as I found my copy in the ridiculously expensive Parisian record shop 'Monster Melodies' .

1st 7". L-R  Red River Fred (Bass), Wild Cat Lou (Guitar), Clint (Vocals) and Sly Fire (Drums).

Their first album (in my opinion, their best) 'The Wild Side of Love came out in 1990 on G.G.O. and it was very soon after the release of the album, that things started going wrong for them. The label went bust and this resulted in very poor distribution of the LP and with no label behind them the promotion disappeared too. It was around this time 1991-2ish that the original line up split with both Fred and Sly the drummer leaving the group. Clint and WC Lou (faux pas for a name if there ever was one !) left Paris around this time ending up in Marseilles where they currently reside.     Website, all in French incidently.

The Dirteez first album: The Wild Side of Love

After they quit Paris, there were no releases until 2000, a gap of  8-9 years although they appear to have made up for lost time by releasing 4 more albums and 3 (?) singles, the last album coming out in 2006 and their 1st album getting a digital re-release only last year (2013).....hunt it down, it's well worth it.

They're still keeping the flame burning and play where and when they can..... 

A+ les gars.