Posts Tagged ‘Easy Action Records’

Bloody Iggy

A few days prior to their run of shows at Max’s Kansas City in July/August 1973,  The Stooges arrived in Manhattan to rehearse. The band’s label provided a practice space in midtown, and tapes were made so Iggy and the band could hear themselves. Years later, the recordings were released, and they were a revelation. Iggy was absolutely on fire during these rehearsals. There are moments when his vocals are even more violent and unhinged than anything heard on the band’s studio LPs or their infamous live album, “Metallic KO .” Though the practice tapes lack the fidelity of those seminal releases, the intensity comes through all the same.

After a long delay, The Stooges third album, “Raw Power   “ was finally released in May 1973. The previous March, after clashes with management came to head, James Williamson was forced out of the group, but after the company dropped Iggy and the Stooges, he was welcomed back into the fold. The band also added a new member, Scott Thurston, to play piano and harmonica.

A number of friends attended the Max’s rehearsals, which were held at a studio owned by CBS Records. Natalie Schlossman, former head of the Stooges fan club, was there, as was original bassist, Dave Alexander, amongst others. With the impending high-profile dates, and as so many were watching, The Stooges gave it their all. At one point, Iggy got on top of the studio’s grand piano to cut a rug.

The Stooges

Recordings of the Max’s rehearsals appear on a number of archival releases, beginning with Rubber Legs  ( 1987), the first in a string of quasi-legal albums comprised of previously unreleased Stooges tapes that flooded the market in the late ‘80s. In 2005, Easy Action Records put out the Stooges-approved boxed set of outtakes and such, Heavy Liquid an abridged version was produced for Record Store Day . One of the six discs contains the Max’s show, as well as seven recordings from the Max’s rehearsals. All of the songs pulled from the practice tape were, at the time, newly worked-up tunes that, in the end, wouldn’t be formally recorded by The Stooges.

Heavy Liquid

“Johanna” (later documented for the Kill City project) is particularly powerful. Said to be about a former girlfriend that got her kicks by playing mind games on the Stooges singer, the tape captures Iggy totally tortured, screaming his head off over a love he knows is toxic, but can’t quit.

The haunting ballad, “Open up and Bleed,” is another intense one. Iggy’s vocals are positively hair-raising here.  The second Max’s Kansas City gig is the one in which Iggy, as he was walking on tables in the club—with attendees including Wayne County, Lenny Kaye and Alice Cooper looking on—slipped and fell on a table full of glasses. When he stood up, his chest was covered in blood . Though thoroughly cut, he finished the show.

  • Iggy Pop – lead vocals
  • James Williamson – guitar
  • Ron Asheton – bass, backing vocals
  • Scott Asheton – drums
  • Scott Thurston – piano
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Last year The Black Tambourines issued ‘No Action’ 7” for Record Store Day which sold out in a day and now commands high collectors prices.

The band have just completed the first 10 cities UK tour with a further 6 eu dates having been added in France , Holland & Belgium

The album Freedom was released to critical acclaim with radio play for not only the single but also album tracks on the BBC being play listed by Lauren Laverne and Gideon Coe as well as i-tunes featuring the album for several weeks. Side A 1. Bad Days 2. White Album 3. Cat Days Side B 1. Rob Heaven 2. 27-25 Blues 3. Green

 

A live radio broadcast from Ultrasonic Recording Studios–first transmitted on New York’s WLIR FM–American Poet boasts excellent sound quality, frenetically high-tensile rock accompaniment from his then backing group The Tots, awesomely passionate versions of “Heroin”, “White Light” and “Rock and Roll” and an interview in which Lou Reed talks–with typical verbal economy–about Mick Ronson (“he’s naughty”), David Bowie (“empathy… [audience giggles]… no, not in that way”) and the Velvet Underground’s Doug Yule (“Dead, I hope”). Icy of demeanour, fiery of rock & roll heart, this is the Ziggy-esque leather-and-eyeliner Lou Reed, returning to home soil on the back of his recently released second solo album–the Bowie/Ronson produced (and influenced) Transformer.

This Solo concert of Lou Reed 1972 in New York, titled American Poet became a sought after bootleg ,quite possibly the best Lou Reed (unofficially released) live album of the lot. Unlike the excessive ‘Rock n Roll Animal’ and ‘Take No Prisoners’ ‘American Poet’ strips Lou’s sound down to reveal what lies at the heart of his music. The mixture of Velvet Underground and solo material here reveals Lou to be a first rate songwriter and his crisp and clear vocal style shows him to be a fine vocalist also.

The versions available here are all very strong. I particuarly love Lou’s slowed down version of ‘I’m Waiting For My Man’ and also ‘Berlin’. I’ve never heard ‘Berlin’ sound so good.

It was recorded in 1972 around the time of the release of ‘Transformer’ and was only available in bootleg form up to more recent years.
Shortly after his separation from the Velvet Underground and immediately after the completion of his second solo album “Transformer”. Contained in the middle of this CD is also a short radio interview with Lou Reed, which doesn’t disturb at all, but fits in very well. Lou Reed is at his best. Obviously he never plays a song twice in the same way, which makes his live albums very interesting. In my opinion each song on this CD is excellent, and I don’t want to highlight any one of them especially.

‘American Poet’ does perhaps lack some of the technical proficiency musically that can be found on Lou’s later live albums but it does reveal the core of his musical talent to a much greater degree.

Lou-Reed_1972

The day after Christmas, December of 1972: Lou Reed and band (The Tots) in Hempstead, NY, recording live for radio at Ultrasonic Recording Studio. Recorded just a month after the release of Transformer, the set finds Lou Reed pulling from the new record, riffing on five Velvets tracks and the penultimate “Berlin” – the track that would title his next release six months later.

Tracklist
White Light White Heat
Vicious
I’m Waiting For The Man
Walk It Talk It
Sweet Jane
Heroin
Satellite of Love
Walk On the Wild Side
I’m So Free
Berlin
Rock N Roll

Photo: Press

Lost Dawn – Lost Dawn  self titled debut album When’s it out? April 13th
Falmouth’s glam-rock DIYers follow their live LP split with fellow Cornish bands The Black Tambourines and The Red Cords with their studio debut. Written and recorded by Lost Dawn. From the self-titled debut album, on Easy Action Records

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Lost Dawn have carved themselves into a unique bracket. Setting out on the road with swaggering blues-rock, the duo developed a tight yet still raw and sharp rhythm structure from years of fostering influences they wore on their sleeves. Now burning with driven glam-rock that touches on most sub-genres in the process, Lost’s Dawn’s pop sculptures are as boastful as they are fret by devilish paranoia.

While Blues, Psych, Garage, even 70s Pop mould their sound, from ‘Robert’s Song‘, through ‘Count On Me‘ and even the erratic nature of ‘Manchild‘ their’s a brooding hook under each. Their ability to wear their influences without sounding artificial is testament to a group that have now organically drawn their own template.

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