Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: Australian avant-pop duo Fabulous Diamonds and Northern California garage trio Nodzzz.
Listed: Fabulous Diamonds + Nodzzz
Jarrod Zlatic and Nisa Venerosa make up the Australian duo Fabulous Diamonds. Venerosa drums and sings, her voice a bleached out, post-punk siren wail. Zlatic plays guitar and sports unreal amounts of back hair, if the cover to their debut EP is to be believed. Siltbreeze's Tom Lax found it to his liking and released it on wax stateside, after Nervous Jerk handled the domestic CD release down under. True to Fabulous Diamonds' sound, Zlatic stuck to second-hand vinyl for this week's Listed.
Top Nine Used Records Found on Fabulous Diamonds / Psychedelic Horseshit Tour
1. & 2. – Velvet Underground – Sweet Sister Ray and 1966
The whole tour I was hoping to find these two Velvet Underground bootlegs and I happened upon both of them on the wall at Long in the Tooth in Philadelphia. Both are amazing examples of the band’s Cale-influenced trance rock tendencies. While Sweet Sister Ray has two amazing versions of “Sister Ray,” I’m mainly into the 40-minute title track that’s split over both sides of the first LP – lots of repetitive guitar twang and viola drone. The 1966 LP has early side-long jams “Melody Laughter” and “The Nothing Song,” each a throbbing, rhythmic wall of sound.
3. Kebekelektrik – Kebekelektrik
Initially, I noticed this because it boasted “A Tom Moulton Mix” and had an enigmatic cover of a woman seemingly turning into pure yellow electricity. The actual music is amazing, spaced-out electronic disco. The a-side begins with a 14-minute version of Ravel’s Bolero and ends with a cover of Space’s “Magic Fly.” Though the crowning track is the album’s final song, “War Dance,” which is co-written with disco-notable Gino Soccio – congas and Roman circus synths intermixing with weird treated horn sounds and a pulsing disco rhythm section. Found in Philadelphia at the amazing Beautiful World record store
4. Centipede – Septober Energy
This is listed mainly for the huge jam that takes up most of Side D. The album, to my ears, sounds like the assorted British jazz-rock scene attempting to meld Coltrane’s Ascension with Hair Septober Energy is the brainchild of Keith and Julie Tippets, who gathered about 40 musicians (Robert Wyatt, Jan Steel, Zoot Money, Ian MacDonald, Dudu Pukwana, Gary Windo, Robert Fripp, Karl Jenkins etc.) to make a giant free-jazz rock-chant orchestra that sounds like an unhinged hippy-drippy Utopian rock-opera.
5. Craig Leon – Nommos
I was hipped onto this record by Michael K, who released the CD of our album in Australia. Going from the tribal-statute front cover and the song titles, I guess that Craig Leon was attempting to make ritualistic electronic music – and he succeeded pretty well. Relentless drum machine beats plum away over layered synthesizer drones – songs oscillate between calming and the frenzy-esque. Strangely, this was released on Takoma, though maybe that’s an illustration of Fahey’s breadth more than anything. Apparently the master tapes to this record no longer exist so it may, sadly, never see a reissue.
6. Judy Henske / Jerry Yester – Rosebud
While I was already a fan of Judy Henske from her High Flying Bird album, the Fred Neil-esque blues-folk isn’t present on this album. Instead, her and husband Jerry Yester, he of The Loving Spoonful, concoct a slightly left-of-centre West Coast record. Denigrated by some, I think this record is an enjoyable afternoon affair.
7. Lou Reed – “Nowhere At All” 7”
As far as I can tell, this is the last hurrah of boogie-rock Reed, weirdly recorded, I assume, during the Coney Island Baby sessions by Gregg Diamond, which means after Lou Reed had already (wrongly) dismissed Sally Can’t Dance and made Metal Machine Music. I just imagine Lou Reed wearing metallic shades, riding down the road in a huge jeep, slumped behind its giant, oversize steering wheel while looking out the window at babes and dudes… Just tough, funky rock. Sort of.
8. Little Howlin’ Wolf – Cool Truth
Not technically second-hand, but old enough to be. I bought this off the man when we played on the same gig in this tiny, very dusty, cluttered house in Washington, D.C. The music is cluttered, strange bluesy music that obviously will draw Trout Mask Replica comparisons, but I think it inhabits its own strange world removed from that.
9. Frolk Haven – At The Apex of High
Strange, home-made jazzy-spacey-prog record that may be more well known for the fact that Stuart (a.k.a. Stewart) Copeland from the Police was drumming on this years before he bunked down with Sting & Co. Not an original copy, but a convincing looking mid-’90s reissue found for $5 in Amoeba. Jazzy guitar noodles, proto-punk prog rock outs, droning electronic drones etc. Like most private pressings. it is compelling for the homely, no-budget vibes, especially given the high-minded outer-space pretensions.
San Francisco’s Nodzzz bring a healthy nerd factor to their take on the current tidal wave of lo-fi garage punk. Too square to smoke weed, as their excellent single “I Don’t Want to Smoke Marijuana” makes explicitly clear (I guess we're supposed to ignore the giant bong on the cover…), Nodzzz still know their way around exquisitely half-baked, tight-pants jangles. With an EP forthcoming on What's Your Rupture, Nodzzz consider a few favorites from their own personal old-school for this edition of Listed.
Albums Our Dads Taught Us
1. Bob Marley - Kaya
My first memory of Kaya was driving with my dad, taking his suits to be dry-cleaned, and then fetching him donuts. My favorite song is “Sun is Shining.” The music is haunting, but Marley’s lyrics are upbeat: “Sun is shining / over the rainbow / Want you to know / I’m a rainbow, too.” The imagery of that verse has always stuck with me. And the lyric “Three little birds are on my doorstep” is classic Bob Marley twee. (Sean)
2. Dave Van Ronk- Folksinger
My father started buying records when he was an engineering student in Manhattan during the mid-’60s, when the folk craze was in full swing and Van Ronk was performing songs from Folksinger. I visited my dad two years ago, and after watching No Direction Home, he played me Folksinger, which I had never heard. “Motherless Children” was a standout track that moved by dad to tears. He reluctantly let me take the album home. (Anthony)
3. The Beach Boys - Little Deuce Coupe
It never made sense to me that my dad was a Beach Boys fanatic, but he was. He bought every album and 45 until he left for the Vietnam, (missing Pet Sounds and everything after). When my dad got back from the war (he was a radio operator on the frontlines), he no longer bought any Beach Boys albums, for obvious reasons. (Sean)
4. Steely Dan – Aja
Dads love Steely Dan. They love studied, white funk. While I was 15, my dad insisted I view his Steely Dan laser-disc documenting the production of Aja. He told me: “Son, this is important. You should pay attention to this.” Aja was an important record for everyone involved. The album, a masterpiece of session musicianship, sold 20 million copies. It could be credited with seducing people in my father’s generation to leave New Jersey for Los Angeles. (Anthony)
5. Michael Jackson – Bad
Quincy Jones really figured out how to not just create an impressive album, but an album that really brings out the texture and percussion from every instrument. Bad best represents my dad’s more youthful, post-separation period. It reminds me of the smell of an ’80s luxury car, together with a really expensive car phone. (Sean)
6. The Bronski Beat – The Age of Consent
I was incredulous when I found this in my dad’s record collection, and when I showed it to him, he looked at me and said, “Your dad’s a human, too.” Bronski Beat were the original gay synth-pop heroes of yore. My dad listened to this kind of thing while he exercised. (Anthony)
7. The Traveling Wilburys – The Traveling Wilburys
Harrison, Petty, Lynne, Dylan and Orbison. These guys went into the studio to have fun and ended up creating this incredible, consistent album. However, I don’t think my dad appreciated the music as much as he thought the song “The End of the Line” was funny. (Sean)
8. Bob Dylan – Blood on the Tracks
This was my first conscious introduction to Bob Dylan, and Bob Dylan obsession: we listened to “Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts” repeatedly during a family road trip out to the Poconos. Though the album’s thin production quality eats into my enjoyment of the songs, I respect those who view this as their favorite Dylan record. The unencumbered vocal and bright, springy playing hosts a series of themes that have been interpreted as reflections on Dylan’s divorce. Blood on the Tracks, then, could be his most dad-oriented album. (Anthony)
9. Paul Simon - Graceland
This is an album I liked when I was younger and still like now. Graceland shows off its dual citizenship with elements of down-south rock and roll, African rhythm, Cajun music, and collaborative African traditionals with Ladysmith Black Mambazo. My dad’s favorite song was the duet with Linda Ronstadt; he said it would give him chills and bring tears to his eyes. (Sean)
10. Prince – Love Symbol
Though it wasn’t my dad who first played me Prince, I nonetheless have a distinct paternal association with the artist. Jeff Goldberg was my best friend in childhood and his father was a successful eye-surgeon, (and one of the early practitioners of laser surgery), who also loved Prince. I remember him driving us home from Hebrew school, parking in his driveway and Jeff begging him to play “Sexy Motherfucker.” He said he would, but only under the condition I wouldn’t tell my parents. They were both wildly amused by the song, but I didn’t really understand it. After that, Dr. Goldberg was my immediate association with all things Prince. (Anthony)
By Dusted Magazine