Banana Nutrament

Half Gradual Footprint

Fooling around with Babelfish or taking potshots at wacky translations is pretty played out the Web. But when our sitemeter showed a spike of traffic coming in from Brazil, I had to see what all these message board referrals were about. It makes it all worthwile to observe a bunch of Brazilian kids forward around a link to our blog, listen to the Dungen stream, and then critique the band amongst themselves. Not to infantilize anyone, but this comment thread translated from Portuguese is cute as a button:

Mitkus: This band makes look like to be good...

Ricapancita UK: You unite, when hearing for the first time this musica, I was with impression that this Dungen is a version indie of... Yes.

Always Stoned: Really, they have a half gradual footprint exactly. To the living creature she must be excellent.

Gustavo Dean: I go to lower today exactly.

Pimentel UK: Fine thing, has the two feet in the Prog. I am UK and I never do not give up.

Gustavo Dean: Caraio, this band is as fierce as the Pampas.

Don't believe me?

The only other time a blip like this has arisen was when a bunch of people on a Hollertronix message board were spreading around a link to the Scotchlostomy post. Said forum was about song identifications, and I chimed in with an ID request of my own. I got a prompt answer and after doing a little digging, found the recording I was after:

Disco Dub Band - For the Love of Money
**Buy it here**

"For the Love of Money" is a real burner but you won't get much out of it if you're listening on tinny earbuds. A song like this needs subwoofers poking out of your trunk. I'd love to hear Tussle cover this live.

New Ghetto Express - On the Verge of Getting It On
**Buy it here**

Here's something I came across by accident. It was on a compilation of "weird disco". It's definitely got that proto-house thing going on. An absolutely essential Funkadelic cover. More summer madness.

I've Got a New Kaleidoscope

The Boredoms take on a Japanese TV anime theme song with "Jungle Taitei" for their Super Roots 8 release. Tomita tweaks it out on the boards for this remix, pushing Eye's habit of massive flanger use to even greater levels. The "Planet Rock" style electro spazzout appended to the end might have been slipped in there for comic effect, but I really like its use in the finish.

Boredoms - Jungle Taitei (Laughter Robot's Hemp Mix) Remixed by Yann Tomita
**Ouch, not cheap, but cool picture disc design**
**Apparently Hrvatski works at Forced Exposure, buy the Super Roots 8 CD there anyway**

Did "Me and Julio.." come out last summer or the year before that? I'm talking about the single, not the inclusion on the last !!! album. I can't remember offhand, these summer anthems start to blur into each other. This Magnetic Fields cover is their single of the moment, it has been stocked pretty well throughout NYC and has earned the band a little more press. I don't think it's going to be the next summer banger though, still, what's nice about it is that it could work both in a sweaty club or during a quiet moment in your own home. You might be able to find the b-side to this somewhere out there in the blog world, but if you like it that much, don't be a cheapskate. It's only 5 dollars and it has ace cover art.

!!! - Take Ecstasy With Me
**Buy it from Other Music**

Seeing as everything on the blog as of late has been summer jams, why not go out with a chant to the sun itself. Nice use of the scraper, much like the !!! track. Come to think of it, the scraper and the maracas were the only instruments our music teacher trusted me with in grade school.

Jakki - Sun...Sun...Sun...(Larry Levan Mix)
**Buy it from Amazon**

Psychedelic Web

Optimo throws a party in Glasgow, Scotland, and judging by the provenance of the name they took and the remix work they have dabbled in, I would imagine it's a pretty fun affair. The new followup to their How to Kill the DJ 2 is entitled Psyche Out and it is a doozy. Rare acid rock cuts brush up against early Chicago acid house without sounding like a forced juxtaposition. They go quite well together, actually. Like your chooclate falling into my peanut butter, the 303 and the fuzz box are a serendipitous match. 20 Jazz Funk Greats big upped Psyche Out among their many praises of the Optimo crew, mentioning a Hawkwind cut that is the one of the highlights of the mix. But I can't get this mashup out of my head, it's Simple Minds' "Theme for Great Cities" paired with some acid synth squiggle that pairs perfectly. I think I've listened to it every day for three weeks now.

Acid Test - Test One / Simple Minds - Theme for Great Cities
More about Psyche Out at the Optimo site
How to Defeat Ratner and the Nets

We need to enter a protest candidate in the upcoming Brooklyn Borough President election. Markowitz will be running (of course), and the proposed Nets stadium at the Atlantic Yards will hopefully be a hot button issue. Regardless, it is almost inevitable that Markowitz will be re-elected.

Marty Markowitz

So why not run a protest candidate who could fully out Markowitz's complicity in the sickening land grab that is Ratner's sweetheart deal to snare the Atlantic Yards? Too much effort is being expended on attacking and vilifying Ratner. While it is all very much deserved, he is simply a businessman, and a shrewd one at that. It is far more disheartening that an elected official ostensibly appointed to serve the people of Brooklyn's interest would rip those same people out of their homes just to get a NBA team and a few more photo-ops.

We need a portly, white-haired simulacrum to step forward and deliver us into the Promised Land. We need our savior to tout Junior's cheesecake with demented glee and wear polo shirts to cop funerals. A man who differs in only one respect from our current figurehead, that he is AGAINST the razing of Prospect Heights and the political backscratching that is Ratner's profiteering from a gross abuse of eminent domain.

Marky Martowitz?

Very simply, someone needs to enter the Brooklyn Borough President's race after legally changing his name to Marky Martowitz. A big belly and shock of white hair wouldn't hurt either. In order to run for Borough President, one would need to collect 5,000 signatures, no mean feat in and of itself. But Marky might be able to get those 5,000 signatures just by canvassing Prospect Heights, speaking to residents about to be displaced by the Nets stadium project or worried about the irreparable havoc it will unleash on the neighborhood. Marky could pick up an easy thousand by setting up a table at the next Develop Don't Destroy rally. Too bad you can't collect signatures above the pissoir at Freddy's. Or can you? I also have a feeling that in a pinch Marky could pick up an extra 400 or 500 signatures by hitting up some quieter neighborhoods where a facsimile would not be expected.

Elect Martowitz.

The Spunk Lads - Iron Lady
More about this friend of Freddy's Bar and the neighborhood at The Spunk Lad's site
The Spunk Lads at

Resistance to Ratner and the Nets stadium (not affiliated with this blog)

Report from the Siren Festival

It was a beautiful day for sunshine and bands. Went down there with pal and co-blogger Gordo, he packed a great vegan lunch and superb organic brownies. I wore my brown Blogger t-shirt so people could identify me, but we didn't run into any of our readers or any blogebrities.

It was great to hear Dungen again. Having just seen them at Maxwell's, they did not disappoint. Here we are at the back, after arriving to the main stage.

Gordo got a little wild with the Super Soaker. It was funny at first but some of the indies scowled at us.

At this point people were NOT happy getting wet. If I was wearing a $200 vintage red t-shirt or had spent a couple hours perfecting my bedhead, I wouldn't want to get wet either. I told Gordo to cool it, so he blasted me in the face instead.

Dungen closed out an amazing set. You might wonder how we got so close.. Now, we're not like those douches who wait for the show to start and then just push through you. But there was definite bad energy where we had been standing and we agreed it was best to move to new terrain.

Right around the close of Dungen's set I started feeling this weird tingling all over my body. This picture doesn't look like much now, but I must have stared at my hand for about a good 45 minutes.

When I took this picture it freaked me out. It was like I was taking a picture inside another reality that was inside another camera. And was there someone behind me taking a picture of my LCD screen? Or is the real reality inside the screen and the surrounding world just it's monitor?

I had this amazing burst of creativity and a total Eureka! moment. I turned to take pictures of the Cyclone, but I changed lens settings and moved my arm around fluidly. I call my invention "slow shutter speed" and I'm going to make a million dollars off it.

I lost Gordo and sort of wandered until I hit the boardwalk. This really cool guy vending beers offered to take my picture as apparently I had been stock still for over two hours just staring at the sun.

I blacked out for awhile but then I found Gordo near Stillwell Avenue. He said we should meet up later because he was too busy blasting cops with his squirt gun toy.

I passed out when I got home and never made it to any of the afterparties. I woke up Sunday morning with the worst sunburn of my life. I wish I had invested in aloe vera futures.

The Darelycks - Bad Trip
What if Dungen and Annie Had a Baby?

It's incredible that creeps on eBay will pay upwards of $1,000 on some rotten hangnail '68 psych LP when they could have booked a flight to Jersey to see the living cuticle for $12. I missed Dungen's first couple songs at Maxwell's, I was too enraptured by another artist's 9th inning craftsmanship and got back into the stage area a bit late. Joining my companions, the crowd pressed in quick; while Gari got his crotch on with Georgia, I was stuck getting weenie bumped by David Cross.

Gustav Ejstes has quite the luscious full head of hair. It's simply undeniable that the man could have a second career as a Nordic Pantene model. I would rather compliment his precise Zappa like control of his band, or mention his many talents as a flautist, but bascially Dungen simply rocked out all number of tracks from Ta Det Lugnt with a few outer space jams thrown in between. They easily melted the crowd's indie rock pretenstions and even earned a few head nods and shoulder dances.

Despite the obscenely cynical preview posted here, anyone within striking distance of NYC should get to the Siren Festival to catch their set. All sorts of blissful Nordic dawn sunrays should emanate.

Dungen - Ta Det Lugnt
**Buy it at Forced Exposure**

Update: If you can't make Siren, there is sold out "secret show" at
Mercury Lounge on Saturday night
. Maybe try Craigslist? Also, they will be flying out to Pitchfork's Intonation Festival for those of you near Chicago.

Second Update: Apparently Annie is Swedish and Dungen is from Norway. Or maybe the other way around. I always get those two countries mixed up.

Third Update: Which reminds me, if anyone can help here, I am looking for a vinyl LP copy of Ta Det Lugnt. Any shops in NYC or on the Internet stocking it? I see it on GEMM, but am not sure if these are real ones or orders to be filled. My e-mail is -- it would be much appreciated.
ESG Covers

Today inveterate comment troll and all around expert on all matters Detroit, Gari of Gumbyfresh weighs in with myself on some intriguing covers of classics from the lovely ladies of 99 Records:

Dirtbombs - My Love For You
**Buy it from Amazon**

Gari: I am very honored that you have asked me to comment on a Detroit Scuzz cut for your multimedia dog and pony show. I must confess that when I listened to this I was prepared to be dismissive. I had thought that I might have been called upon to review their version of Johnnie Bristol's "Do You See My Love (For You Growing)", which appeared on Ultraglide In Black. It would have been very simple for me to rhapsodise about that song, and maybe tell you about the erotic memories that have become attached to it. In fact, I had built up a frenzy of righteous anger by the time I got round to listening to it, and became quite agitato when I heard the sounds of the band hanging about before the song started. This is a trademark Dirtbombs move, and while you cannot tell what they are saying (they are quite possibly condemning the Von Bondies, which is a time-honored Detroit pastime), you are not expecting a seismic shift in the sands of Scuzz.

Miguel: I was quite surprised to see them do this cover too. I have always found their over the top appropriation of R&B tropes questionable. Then I found out today that there is a black guy in the band, so I guess they are only 80% as disingenuous as I thought they were.

Gari: Quite, an awkward approach to racial politics is another Detroit pastime. The Dirtbombs are usually rather magisterial, but this song is rather scrappy, rather like this heroically ugly dog that Katie Couric interviewed on the Today Show the other morning. It is not loveable as such, and is barely fully formed, but there is something transfixing about it. I would completely exhaust my thin supply of musical terms by trying to describe the effect of the two guitars moving in separate registers. One of the guitars operates in the normal Dirtbombs register, and chugs along rather conventionally. But the other guitar is wheedling around in the stratosphere, and presses the buttons of Saturday morning Westerns, and, for reasons I cannot vocalise, an Orbital tune called "Monday".

Miguel: It works nicely, it translates well into a rocked out version. Covered this way it almost sounds like a forgotten Motown cut from the '60s.

Gari: Covering obscure Motown cuts is a favourite Dirtbombs pastime. I do believe you are right. Maybe they could carve out a niche making all songs sound like obscure Motown covers, much like those revolting swing musicians. But I must confess that this cut lacks purpose and would likely not find a home in one of their awesomely disciplined live sets. It is maybe like that ugly dog looking for the foofy poodle that is a chorus, no?

Liars - Tumbling Walls Buried Me In The Debris With ESG
**Buy it from Insound**

Gari: Halfway through this exercise you have reminded me of the whole ESG connection so I will try and be more contextual. I can see why these lovely ladies from the South Bronx have been sampled so much. They have so many delightful phrases and cute little hooks. But no choruses, which narrows the congregation to instrumentalabalistscratchtarts and post-punk groupies. F***ers that like to pretend Wire never existed, in other words.

Miguel: Do The Liars fall in that latter category? Or is it Liars? Haven't heard much from them lately. I don't know why they fired their rhythm section, which was their greatest appeal to me. Then they made that awful album about witches. I remember hearing that after their debut album came out several people told the band it reminded them of This Heat, which they had never heard of. I'm guessing that following up on that tip, and reacting against what they heard, played no small part in the drastic changes they undertook. At least they credited ESG here on this track, and even turn it into something half new.

Gari: I think it is instructive to look at another cultural artefact from 1979 - the Warriors. They were unable to Dig It as they had been asked, on account of the asker getting shot, and had to flee the Bronx. Now did they bugger off to the soothing sounds of these little tykes or to a souped up R&B soundtrack that leant heavily on Martha & The Vandellas and Joe Walsh? In fact, maybe they weren't fleeing a ninja-shades gang at all, but a hideous screeching Malcolm McClaren figure brandishing a jukebox playing this. Unlikely, I'll grant you, but I cannot help but feeling that these ESG people were some kind of cosmic early payback for the 1970s decline of the Bushwick brewing industry. The Liars tune is a lot more deftly rendered than the Dirtbombs, and becomes so busy and chorusless, and so dependent on a spooky piano in the background that one is reminded of NIN's grumpier and more aimless moments. Top yelping, mind.

Miguel: Yes, yelping is something The Liars excel at. I hope they still put on a great live show. I saw them open for Sonic Youth some years back and they killed. Between sets Angus Andrews raided his own merch table to shove handfuls of free product into the hands of everyone standing nearby. Nice guy. I hope he is doing well out in the woods all by his lonesome.

Here is a little taste of the real deal, for anyone interested:

ESG -You (Live at Hurrah, NYC 12-3-80)

Save CBGBs

CBGB is a symbol of raw American energy, for 31 years CBGB has provided a space for new creativity in music and art, a spotlight for young talent, and a unique safe-space to pursue art and free expression. CBs has always kept its prices affordable for all music lovers, evolved to fill the needs of the music and cultural communities of New York City, and jump started the careers of thousands of performers. Now CBGB needs your help to keep its doors open. CBGB does not own their space. The building is owned by SF Associates and rented to the Bowery Resident's Committee (BRC). The BRC rents the entire building for aprox. $16,000 a month and charges CBGB's aprox $19,000 a month for their space (about half the building). The BRC is no small non-for-profit organization, they are a $25 million dollar a year group that receives over $15 million dollars from the city and state. The BRC also claims that CBGB has not paid their full rent for three years. In fact, the BRC has not properly billed CBGB for those years AND has not provided heat. The BRC is currently not negotiating with CBGBs for a new lease which expires August 31, 2005. They also have both properties listed and available on the Real Estate MLS for anyone else who wishes to rent 313 and 315 Bowery. CBGB supports the work of the BRC and is willing to work with them to reach an agreement and even assist the BRC in their mission to help the homeless – But now the BRC will not even talk to CBGB. Please sign the petition below to help save CBGB.

So I did. Five times.

Get involved yourself at Save CBGB's.

Television - Blank Generation (Live at CBGB's '75)

2005 Year In Review

Quite a few blogs have posted their "First Half Best of 2005" top ten lists and album favorites. We find this odd, as every album worth hearing has been already released or leaked at the very least. Everyone knows that the music world operates inversely to the film industry; the movie world releases Oscar bait in December while the majors and indies put out their best albums early in the year, saving the dross for the Christmas present impulse buying season. And so, we present our 2005 Year In Review.

Deirdre: Sufjan Steven's "Illinois" is my choice, it is an assured return to the sprawling, ambitious project of creating an album for all 50 of the States you Americans have. Who knows if he will even come close to completing it, regardless, the best art often springs from failed attempts at the impossible. The poppiest moments of this record sound like something coming out of Schroeder's piano during a Charlie Brown/Peanuts television special.
I'm not going to stream anything off it, as it has already been featured here on our blog. Quite a few online writers are trumpeting his praises and sharing tracks from the release, perhaps too many. It is a troublesome side effect of the music blog explosion that often too many ears converge on a single artist and half an album gets pushed around the Internet as a result. This is great PR but I hope it does not adversely affect sales. To see what I mean, look at the level of interest in "Illinois" here.

Darnell: My pick for 2005 would have to be Congotronix. These are some African cats who grew up listening to Mantronix and then worked in all the new angles Hollertronix are up to. When I heard these trax I had to drop a fat YouSendIt to all my hollafriends. Plus, what really makes this a batch of triple swift jawns is that they power their thumb pianos with car batteries, which is what people in the Bronx use to get juice for block party jams. Or so I've read.

Congotronics - Kule Kule
Buy it here

Indeie: I wanted to show the world my "fun" side so I thought I'd pick the LCD Soundsystem debut album. Then I realized it was sent to me in 2004 as an advance promo copy, so I can't count it for this anuum. My choice is Elisjtha Epperhaus' delicately nuanced Moonbeam LP. It was produced in Finland over 8 years of winter solstices, with all equipment being powered by lunar energy, that is, solar panels fed by the moonlight.

Deirdre: That sounds beautiful.

Indeie: Well, you're unlikely to hear it as it was hand lathed in an edition of five. And I own two of them.

Miguel: I'm inclined to agree with Deirdre's pick as I have been unable to put down the Sufjan. But I've been playing another powerhouse record even more, "Let Us Never Speak of It Again" by Out Hud. I've seen them perform "How Long" and "One Life to Leave", the female leads singing together work well live and are a new direction from their prior work. It's also interesting to see how the disco barnburner "Dear Mr. Bush.." translated to the studio setting. The real surprise though was "It's For You". This is either something they came up with for the album or I just don't remember it from their early live performances, but it is a real standout for many
people. The whole album retains Molly Shnicks's stunning cello work (also present on the S.T.R.E.E.T.D.A.D. album) which fuses so nicely with the synths and Factory era beats. And you've got to give them credit for pulling off unironic use of the slap bass.

Out Hud - It's For You
**Buy "Let Us Never Speak of It Again" Here**

Gordo: These are all sweet.
Fighting Back the Gloom

What a terrible morning yesterday was. I woke up and poured some coffee only to have my honey tell me there was a bombing being reported in London. Not realizing the severity of what was happening, I cracked that Jacques Chirac must have been behind it in retaliation for losing the Olympics. What an ugly display of carnage, so many awful images and scarred psyches. Unfortunately, while this event has been all over the news in New York City it hasn't been a major topic of conversation here. I don't know if it's because we don't realize the magnitude of the event, or because we are in denial, but it is disappointing to not see people here reach out the way the world reached out to us after the events of September the 11th.

Metro Area - Orange Alert (DFA Remix)
**Buy this at Tigersushi**

No, this is not some hipster in-joke referencing terrorism with ironic posturing. But here in the States we are back up to Orange Alert, what sort of draconian security and continued loss of privacy rights this will entail, I don't know. This is one of my favorite DFA remixes, it takes an excellent original in an entirely new direction. Its febrile beat pairs nicely with swooping angelic synth choruses and the nimble bass playing by Tyler Pope adds an extra dimension to the whole. Something a little invigorating for what has started as a sluggish day.

Os Brazoes - Pega A Voga Cabeludo
**More on Os Brazoes**
**More about Brazilian Nuggets**

In addition to the dread that was crept into New York City, the weather has just become a mess. We've been overcast for two days now and the rain keeps trickling. Definitely doesn't feel like Summer anymore, but a clear sky reprieve should be coming this weekend. This song might put you back in a warmer mood with its sunny hothouse psychedelica and incessant guitar chirping.



= Scotchlostomy Bag

We celebrated the birthday of a certain Banana Nutrament comment troll by taking him out to a Mets game this weekend. Great day for a game, unfortunately the Mets got owned, but we got see Dontrelle Willis of the Marlins pitch a complete game shutout.

I decided I was going in with a metal flask of Jameson's. It's not that I'm a cheapskate, though $6.25 Coor Lights aren't all that tempting. The issue was that I have grown accustomed to swilling scotch as I watch baseball at home, and knew something would be missing if I didn't bring some. I had a little
trouble getting in through security, I could either go through a line with a man wanding everyone or receive a pat down search. I panicked a little, at the last second transferred my flask to a plastic bag with which I was carrying peanuts and two hats. I got through easily, quite heartening to know I could smuggle in a Glock that way.

I figured I'd be caught and then would just hand over the cheap flask to them. The worst thing that could happen would be that they would take my ticket and then eject me immediately. In that scenario I would simply go over to another gate and pay the $15 dollars to get back in and find my friends. But what if one was at a Yankees playoff game and had only a single chance to get in? What if you bought scalped tickets that cost $400?

Solution: The Scotchlostomy Bag.

While idly swirling the ice cubes of my Pepsi and Jameson's (quite good actually) I pondered this important question, how best to smuggle scotch? What I came up with is the scotchlostomy bag. One would take a standard issue hospital IV drip bag, or if you were hardcore, an actual colostomy bag that had been boiled and disinfected, and fill it up with 200-400 CC's of Irish treat. Yes, I actually do know Jameson's is a whiskey, but let's not be anal (no pun intended). One could also fill up the attached tubing too, to squeeze in an extra half a shot. I would recommend attaching it to a leg, with tubing running up to the torso. While being searched one could preemptively tell the guard about this medical condition, and I have a feeling if warned he wouldn't pat down too hard. If anyone actually asked for pants to be taken off to check out the apparatus, one could boldly show off what would look to be a bag full of brownish piss. I hope to patent this idea and sell it through a cable infomercial, but until then feel free to create your own.

Minor Threat - Asshole Dub
**Buy this here, hopefully some of the money will go to sue Nike**

Hollertronix - Who Are These Assholes?

Happy 4th of July! (No Post)

Apologies to our UK readership, no post today, it's the 4th of July and I'm guessing hardly anyone is bored at work or checking blogs on this lovely, sunny Monday. It's an important day for us Americans, a time to barbecue massive heaps of chicken, crash our boats into each other, fire bottle rockets at low flying Cessnas, and most importantly, drive drunk after the festivities end. Maybe you people have a bank holiday or something.

Five years ago I worked in London and I clearly remember going out with some friends that July 4th night, taking the tube out to Hoxton to go to the Jazz Cafe. As we went up a massive escalator we were correctly pegged us as Americans by the people going down. A bunch of bold teenagers called us out and said something teasing but good spirited. We returned with screams of "Revolutionary War! USA BABY", to which they tactfully returned with "Vietnam! Vietnam!". Sorry about the lack of a post today, instead I will leave you with this rarely heard treat:

John Cage, Nico, & Damo Suzuki - All Tomorrow's Parties
UPDATE: Dumb joke made on the 4th, now unfunny due to the awful events in London of this morning of the 7th.