Thursday, March 25, 2010

V.A. Chains and Black Exhaust (2002)

Rare Chicago Psych
Chains & Black Exhaust
GENRE`````Funk, Psychedelic


“Chains And Black Exhaust” is probably the best funk rock compilation in the world -- and it doesn’t even have a song with the word "butter" in the title, either. It is wild and untamed stuff (unlike the majority of “various artists” compilations of any genre) and every track hits the nail on the head of people with long-unrequited Hendrix/Hazel fixations. All tracks are mainly on the same organic level of physical deepness as "Free Your Mind And Your - as they usher your ass back into those days of blatantly uncomfortable intra-racial relations in the media and what seems like the top tier of the most forgotten yet memorable psychedelic funk, fuzztone soul and Jimi vamps taken to illogical extremes sifted out from a decade of flea market obscurities and distilled into one truly fine representation. The sleeve design sports exterior shots of what would appear to be biker gang social clubs that tie in neatly with the title (which initially threw many off the true trail of these tracks’ provenance -- as though this collection was comprised of amateur recordings by black sickle men who pumped out psychedelic sex grooves during their off-road hours in the confines of those subterranean HQs like some soul brother equivalent of Davie Allan & The Arrows) and although the album lists no titles or artists, this only increased the chatter of those in the know and inevitably forced to the surface 12 out of 16 titles (with the remaining four of dubious origin because where the hell else is a track called “Potted Shrimp” besides the classic “Trident Sessions” Stones bootleg, anyway?!) And out of this whole passel of gunked up funk only Curtis Knight, Hot Chocolate (don’t worry -- it’s early head days with no marshmallows at all) and Black Merda I had previously even heard, let alone heard of (Which I admit isn’t saying much, but all I mean is that the usual suspects are in no way present and accounted for in this remarkable compilation.)


Pitchfork review:

Headheritage review

Monday, March 22, 2010

Orchestre T.P. Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou - 0+0=Zero (Zero + Zero = Zero)

ARTIST`````Orchestre T.P. Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou
0+0+Zero (Zero + Zero = Zero)
GENRE`````Funk, African, Voodoo


Unfortunately political realities in Benin had left the Tout Puissant Orchestre Poly Rythmo bereft of international recognition, while big bands like Super Rail Band or Orchestra Baobab enjoyed a rebirth… But Poly Rythmo has always been recognised as one of the best orchestras in Africa, so much that the former leader of Super Rail Band in Bamako, Tidiani Kone, left his job in Mali to join the fabulous Poly Rythmo in the seventies.

Their repertoire draws inspiration from the regional poly-rhythmic blend called Sato or Sakpata, original Voodoo beats, which are married with the funk left behind by James Brown’s African tours. Their voices, brass section, guitar and percussion weaved together to crystallise a golden age in this musically-fertile nation. Most of their 500 songs were recorded live with a couple of microphones and a Swiss-made Nagra reel-to-reel tape machine. The studio was a living room in the noisy neighbourhood near Cotonou’s airport.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Black Devil Disco Reuploaded!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Chaino - Jungle Echoes (1959)

Jungle Echoes
GENRE`````Exotica, Tribal
, Afrobeat, Kitsch

The self-styled "percussion genius of Africa," exotica-era enigma Chaino was actually born Leon Johnson in Philadelphia in 1927; raised primarily in Chicago, the details of his early life are largely a mystery, although at some point he learned to play the bongos and began touring the so-called "chitlin" circuit of black nightclubs. During the mid-1950s he surfaced in Los Angeles, and with producer Kirby Allan entered the famed Gold Star studio to record a series of otherworldly jungle exotica LPs; the first, the 1958 Verve label release Jungle Mating Rhythms, featured not only a lurid fusion of African rhythms, primal chants and lusty moaning-and-groaning but also liner notes claiming "Chaino is the only survivor of a lost race of people from the wilds of the jungle in a remote part of central Africa where few white men have ever been...(he) could play seven or more drums at the same time, with such a blur of speed that you can hardly see his hands." In the months which followed, Chaino issued three more albums -- Jungle Echoes, Night of the Spectre and Africana -- each for a different label; on occasion, he also worked as a session musician, and even appeared in pair of feature films, Nighttide and The Devil's Hand. A notoriously difficult and eccentric figure, however, in time he and Allan parted ways, and Chaino's activities over the decades to follow remain unknown; with the resurgence of interest in exotica during the mid-1990s, his brother George Johnson discovered the percussionist's whereabouts and briefly brought him back home to Chicago. Chaino nevertheless resumed his nomadic ways soon after; following surgery to remove a brain tumor, he suffered a fatal heart attack on July 8, 1999.


Mediafire is givin me a headache with it's upload problems so if there is something wrong with the .zip file please let me know and I'll re-upload it somewhere else.
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