Title: The Great Deceiver

Artist: King Crimson

Album: Starless & Bible Black

Year Released: 1974

What It Is: A burst of jazz-prog rock with weird lyrics. The playing is expert on all accounts, and yes John Wetton does play those tricky bass parts and sing at the same time.

Riffage / Hookage: Robert Fripp is always good for a strong riff. He’s an exceptionally powerful guitarist. It’s a shame metalloids don’t give him his due. Perhaps it’s because most Crimson songs change tempos and styles at the drop of a hat.

Cowbell?: I’m sure Bill Bruford hits it once or twice. He hits EVERYTHING ELSE in his kit, it seems.

Words Of Wisdom: “Cigarettes, Ice Cream, Figurines Of The Virgin Mary.”

Mixology Report: Mix with care. The opening lyric is “Health Food Faggot”, but that’s British slang (well slang in 1974) for a veggie meatball.

Top Five Genius Results: Yes – The Gates Of Delirium
ELP – The Barbarian
Genesis – Can-Utility & the Coastliner
Van Der Graaf Generator – Man Erg
Gentle Giant – Black Cat

For The Good Of The Order: I think some incarnation of King Crimson going on right now, gigging periodically. Fripp is so mercurial though, it’s hard to tell what’s next with him.

Here’s a recording of a live version from “The Great Deceiver” 4-cd set. David Cross quit Crimson because he was often drowned out by Wetton and Bruford. Fripp complained about this as well, and rather much shut down during the “Red” album, which was the last Crimson record for many years.

Title: Person – Person

Artist: Joe “King” Carrasco & The Crowns

Album: Synapse Gap (Mundo Total)

Year Released: 1982

What It Is: A hella fun Tex-Mex rock ‘n’ roll song from one of the best party bands ever to come out of Texas.

Riffage / Hookage: Any song with a farfisa is going to have hooks.

Cowbell?: Nah.

Words Of Wisdom: “Herman? He can’t even tie his shoelaces!”

Mixology Report: Always great for a party mix!

Top Five Genius Results: Too much partying for Genius!

For The Good Of The Order: The discography of Joe “King” Carrasco is kind of a mess. Some songs, like “Buena” appear on three different releases with three different recordings. You may remember Joe from “Party Weekend” on MTV, but that song was recorded at least twice.

Here are two vids. The first is the MTV vid that is hilarious even now; gotta love the production value. Not values, value.

The second is from the “Son Of Stiff” tour in 1980 and it shows that the whole intro routine was worked out well before the song hit vinyl.

Title: Feeling Gravity’s Pull

Artist: R. E. M.

Album: Fables Of The Reconstruction

Year Released: 1985

What It Is: A classic R. E. M. song that kicks off a moody, understated, misunderstood album. The album is murky, mysterious and unsettling, and this cut very much epitomizes that feeling.

Riffage / Hookage: Peter Buck’s guitar riff is one of the all-time classic R. E. M. riffs, and one I actually learned long ago. (Like I remember it now…) The cello and strings are a fascinating counterpoint to the whole thing.

Cowbell?: Bill Berry is very, and rightly, understated in this cut.

Words Of Wisdom: “I fell asleep and read just about every paragraph.

Read the scene where gravity is pulling me around
Peel back the mountains peel back the sky
Stomp gravity in the floor
It’s a Man Ray kind of sky
Let me show you what I can do with it
Time and distance are out of place here

Step up, step up, step up the sky is open-armed
When the light is mine, I felt gravity pull

Somewhere near the end it said
‘You can’t do this’, I said ‘I can’
To shift sway rivers shift, oceans fall and mountains drift
It’s a Man Ray kind of sky
Let me show you what I can do with it

Step up, step up, step up the sky is open-armed
When the light is mine, I felt gravity pull onto my eyes,
Holding my head straight (looking down).
This is the easiest task I’ve ever had to do…

I fell asleep and read just about every paragraph

Read the scene where gravity is pulling me around
Shift the swaying river’s shift
Oceans fall and mountains drift
It’s a Man Ray kind of sky
Let me show you what I can do with it
Time and distance are out of place here

Step up, step up, step up the sky is open-armed
When the light is mine, I felt gravity pull onto my eyes,
Holding my head straight (looking down).
This is the easiest task I’ve ever had to do…

Holding the sky in their arms
Gravity pulls me down”

Since Stipe is mumbly on the album, I thought I’d post the entire lyrics.

Mixology Report: I think you may have to watch where you put it, since it’s so moody and introspective. But yeah, throw it on a mix!

Top Five Genius Results: The Replacements – Achin’ To Be
Bob Mould – See A Little Light
XTC – Mayor Of Simpleton
10,000 Maniacs – Verdi Cries
Echo & The Bunnymen – Do It Clean

For The Good Of The Order: 1985, Butler University. The Minutemen opened up. Who the heck thought it was their third to last gig? R. E. M. came out on stage. Stipe had a music stand and a bag over half of his head, and sung to the side of the mike. They opened with this. My girlfriend wasn’t that whelmed, but I about lost my cookies. Sorry, Marie, I wasn’t that fun of a date that night, but I was in heaven.

Here’s the official vid. It’s very much influenced by Neil Young’s films, I think (as in, WTF am I watching here?)

Here’s a live cut from 2003

And now, from their Dublin shows which were compiled in a totally KICK ASS album just recently. Go buy it! YESTERDAY!

Been a long time since I rock and rolled…

Title: Jim Dandy

Artist: Black Oak Arkansas

Album: High On The Hog

Year Released: 1974

What It Is: Cheesy cheeky southern boogie. This cover of LaVern Baker’s great 1956 hit propelled BOA into second-tier stardom. They toured and sold a lot of records, but never really hit it huge like Skynyrd or Grand Funk Railroad.

Riffage / Hookage: Not that riffy, even though they use THREE (count ’em) guitarists. But there’s a hook, of course. Baker had the hook, too!

Cowbell?: I don’t hear any, but there may be some somewhere

Words Of Wisdom: “Once upon a time, I went to Maine.
Got a ticket on a DC plane.
Mr. Dandy didn’t need no chute!
I was high and ready to boot!
Jim Dandy to the rescue!
Go, Jim Dandy! Go, Jim Dandy!”

Mixology Report: The cheese factor is strong. Why not?

Top Five Genius Results: Ted Nugent – Stranglehold
Blackfoot – Highway Song
Nazareth – Love Hurts
Rick Derringer – Rock & Roll, Hootchie Koo
Foghat – I Just Want To Make Love To You

For The Good Of The Order: Did you realize that they covered “Taxman” by the Beatles on 1975’s “Ain’t Life Grand” record? I didn’t. Wow. It sounds how you’d expect it to sound.

Here are two clips featuring BOA, Jim Dandy Mangrum and guest vocalist Ruby Starr (with the largest hair to skirt ratio ever). Did David Lee Roth cop everything from Jim Dandy? Could be…

ACK! So sorry. Been working. Which is good, but bad for you music fans…

Title: Low Self Opinion

Artist: The Rollins Band

Album: The End Of Silence

Year Released: 1992

What It Is: Strong. Very very strong. Triple espresso no sugar strong.

Riffage / Hookage: Heavy duty riffage. It’s like Rollins fronting a heavy metal band. The line between punk and metal was very blurry anyway, but this rather much erased it.

Cowbell?: I hear some! It’s either cowbell or a bell-sounding cymbal. It’s there. Trust me!

Words Of Wisdom: “You sleep alone at night
You never wonder why
All this bitterness wells up inside you
You always victimize
So you can criticize yourself
And all those around you “

I never know if Hank is being autobiographical or not. But he’s rather insightful despite his screaming and nagging.

Mixology Report: Start off a mix with this. Tell people to turn it up. Watch their ears explode!

Top Five Genius Results: Helmet – In The Meantime
Black Flag – Thirsty & Miserable
Clutch – A Shogun Named Marcus
Fugazi – Sieve-Fisted Find
Helmet / House Of Pain – Just Another Victim

For The Good Of The Order: What a revelation! I remember seeing this video debut on 120 Minutes on MTV and I definitely took notice. Then I saw a clip of them during Lollapalooza. I later saw the Rollins Band open up for the Beastie Boys. Man, they were STRONG! However, the raging voice of nag that Rollins is pretty much shoehorned the band into one style, but I think we all need a dose of the Rollins Band now and again.

So you get two. One, the studio video:

The other, live. Normally, live cuts are faster. This one is slower…

Wow, been too long. So sorry. So I’ll give ya a 2-fer-1. Of course, they’re segued together on the record, but still it IS a value, right?

Title: Behind The Wall Of Sleep / N. I. B.

Artist: Black Sabbath

Album: Black Sabbath

Year Released: 1970 (yet again!)

What It Is: Two crunch-tastic songs linked together by Geezer Butler’s bass solo. First time I heard these I was totally blown away, and that’s hard to do from a cheapo cassette played in the tape deck of a Ford Escort. (If I recall, I bought the tape at Target and it was in the $3.99 bin along with all of the Historia De La Musica tapes. The tape had “Evil Woman” instead of “Wicked World” to kick off side 2, so I think it was a bunch of cheap tapes from Spain.)

Riffage / Hookage: You’re a silly silly person if you think there ain’t no riffs here! Both of these song feature Tony Iommi at his best – heavy riffs and no annoying wankery in the solos.

Cowbell?: No, but I’ve always loved the way Bill Ward’s cymbals were miked. It’s a very crisp sound on the cymbals. He’s rather underrated, I think.

Words Of Wisdom: “Feel your spirit rise with the breeze
See your body falling to it’s knees
Sleeping wall of remorse
Turns your body to a corpse “

I was unsure about these lyrics, since they really do a weird thing with Ozzy’s voice and the stereo effects in this song. It seems to move between channels every syllable.

“Now I have you with me, under my power
Our love grows stronger now with every hour
Look into my eyes, you will see who I am
My name is Lucifer, please take my hand”

You know, a band can’t role play anymore without being called Satanist…

Mixology Report: Don’t mix it for the weenies!

Top Five Genius Results: Sabbath is way too powerful for Genius!

For The Good Of The Order: The birth of sludge! Yes, while Blue Cheer may have ‘invented’ the heavy metal sound, they weren’t sludgy, and by 1970 were pseudo-folky anyway. This, my friend, is 100% UK Choice sludge. Eat it up, yum!

Here you go, vids for BOTH! You can even understand when Ozzy speaks! Both from the same show!