Iron Leg Digital Trip #26 – Super Duper 45RPM Folk Rock
Psychedelic Fuzz Dance Party!
Blue Things – You Can Live In Our Tree (RCA)
Ron-Dels – Picture of You (Smash)
The Wicked – The Spider and the Fly (Isabelle)
Beckett Quintet – It’s All Over Now Baby Blue (Gemcor)
Cast of Thousands – Girl What You Gonna Do (Tower)
Middle Window – Treasure Land (Garm)
New Breed – One More for the Good Guys (HBR)
HP Lovecraft – Wayfaring Stranger (Philips//Dunwich)
Five by Five – Hang Up (Paula)
Bards – Jabberwocky (Capitol)
Blues Magoos – We Ain’t Got Nothin’ Yet (Smash)
Bob Seger & the Last Heard – East Side Sound (Cameo)
Unlimited – You’re Never There (Century)
Them – Call My Name (Parrot)
As stated in my previous communiqué, I am currently a prisoner of sorts, bound by my ailing kidney to a hospital room. The food’s not that bad, and my wife’s here keeping me company, but at the end of the day there are few places I’d rather be less than the hospital.
The mix I bring you today has been assembled in celebration/commemoration of two years of blog-o-fication here at Iron Leg. When I started up Iron Leg – ignoring the little voice in my head that kept shouting that I’d never have enough time – I never figured I’d still be at it two years down the road.
Yet here we all are.
Though the write up will be a little shorter than I’m used to – since I am where I am – the music is (as always) of the finest quality, featuring a number of fairly recent acquisitions as well as some old faces from the crates. The vibe this time out is mostly garagey, with some prime folk rock, some psyched out fuzz and a couple of certified raveups.
Things get off to a jangly start with ‘He’s Lying’ by the Bad Seeds. I have to admit, when I bought this 45 I thought I was getting something by the legendary Texas punk band. When I got home and did a little research I discovered that this particular batch of Bad Seeds hailed not from the Lone Star state but rather from Kentucky. Both sides of this one are cool, and the flip will be featured here some time soon.
The Blue Things have appeared here before, and they remain one of my fave 60s bands, as capable with a beat number as they were with psyched out garage like the tune in this mix ‘You Can Live In Our Tree’. Dig the backward phased guitar and that Gregorian Chant-like chorus. Trippy.
I featured the more rocking flipside of the Ron-Dels’ folky ‘Picture of You’ a few weeks ago. ‘Picture…’ features a cool guitar effect that sounds like someone messing with the volume knob.
I have no idea who ‘The Wicked’ were, but am pretty sure that ‘The Spider and the Fly’ is one of the sickest records ever committed to vinyl, and provided the soundtrack to countless poor slobs who, thanks to lysergic assistance were suddenly convinced they could fly. Oddly enough the flip side is a fairly tame cover of Gary Lewis and the Playboys’ ‘This Diamond Ring’.
The Beckett Quintet hailed recorded for the Hollywood, CA label Gemcor, but actually came from New Mexico. Their blazing ‘No Correspondence’ appeared in the Iron Leg First Anniversary mix. The tune I bring you today is that record’s flipside, a cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘It’s All Over Now Baby Blue’, which was apparently a local radio hit in California.
The Cast of Thousands were in fact a Texas based band that recorded the slamming ‘Girl What You Gonna Do’ in 1966. This is as prime a slice of pure, mid-60s garage punk, with the combo organ, ringing guitar and snotty vocals as you’re ever likely to hear. I LOVE this one.
I know nothing about the Middle Window, or their oddly named record label GARM. I can say with assurance that ‘Treasure Land’ is a very nice bit of melodic garage pop.
The New Breed is one of those bands that recorded for HBR (like the Unrelated Segments) who’s records I’m always looking for but never finding – until last month. It was while pawing through a box of one-dollar 45s that I saw the HBR label and was stunned when it turned out to be a mint copy of the New Breed 45. The band came from the Bay Area in California and is best known as the starting place for one Timothy B Schmidt, later of an insignificant, barely known band called the Eagles. While I’ll feature this 45s well-known a-side ‘Want Ad Reader’ at a later date, I had to include the surprising flipside ‘One More For the Good Guys’ which has a bit of an Avalon Ballroom feeling.
‘Wayfaring Stranger’ – an adaptation of a traditional tune – was the first 45 and the lead-off track on the debut album by Chicago’s H.P. Lovecraft. Featuring the folkier sound of their decidedly psychey sound. The 45 comes on a cool Philips label with a Dunwich logo on the side.
The Five by Five came blazing out of Magnolia, Arkansas with the psyched out guitar of ‘Hang Up’ (the flip of which is a fairly cool cover of Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Fire’).
The Bards were a Pacific Northwest band who recorded for the Picadilly label. Their adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s ‘Jabberwocky’ appeared on the flip of a Curtis Mayfield cover. They later went on to record as Moses Lake, produced by none other than Curt Boettcher.
If there’s anyone here who doesn’t know ‘We Ain’t Got Nothin’ Yet’ by the Blues Magoos – for all intents and purposes the national anthem of garage punk – I’d be surprised. I just happened to pull it out of the box and decided to include it in the mix.
‘East Side Story’ by Bob Seger and the Last Heard is one of my all time faves. It was covered in the US by the Caretakers and in the UK by the St Louis Union. ‘East Side Sound’, basically an instrumental dub of the song appears on the b-side of the Last Heard’s Cameo 45.
If anyone has any information about the Unlimited, please drop me a line. They recorded the jangly ‘You’re Never There’ for the custom pressing label Century. Based in Saugus, California they pressed records by church choirs, high school bands, rock groups and anyone who had the dough and the wherewithal to send in a tape.
We close things out with a record that is not “technically” garage, but since it’s by the Irish group that launched a thousand garage bands, it’ll do. Them’s ‘Call My Name’ is from their second US album and displays many of the trademarks (including Van Morrison’s wail) of the nascent garage punk movement in the US.
That all said, I hope you dig the mix and I’ll be back next week with some more cool stuff.