Friday, February 20, 2009

Sluggy support crew

I'll be posting some more Slugrock shortly, youse punk rocks.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

V/A - BAbylon bleibt Fahren

Bootleg compilation with one B.G.K. track.

Hydromatics - Parts Unknown (1999)

Parts Unknown, Hydromatics debut album on White Jazz (Sweden). It appeared both in CD and in LP form. The first 1000 copies were pressed in clear vinyl.

The release was supported by a 4 week, extensive European tour together with Zen Guerrilla and the Hellacopters (Nicke played two sets per night for a full month !)


Hydromatics - Powerglide

The Hydromatics second full length album "Powerglide" came out in CD form on the Italian Freakshow label, a small company that conveniently went AWOL shortly afterwards and hasn't been heard of since. They did however license the vinyl LP version to Cargo Germany, without notifying the band or paying the band their part of the license fee, as agreed on before, and stipulated in the contract.
The Cargo LP doesn't mention any songwriting credits or publishing information anywhere, making this a bit of a dubious release. In my book it's a bootleg. Since there was no contract between Cargo and the band, the label wasn't about to give us any royalties either.

The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side.
- Hunter S. Thompson

Hydromatics on Wikipedia
Scott Morgan talks about Hydro on I-94bar

I-94 BAR

POWERGLIDE - The Hydromatics (Freak Show)
There was a time when it appeared the Hydromatics might just be headed down to Australia, as support to the Hellacopters. More's the pity it didn't come off (a requirement for a local act to fill the support spot, and the need to save dollars to offset the then ridiculously high $40 ticket price, gave the nod to The Monarchs.) Until it happens, however, this album will have to do.

It's the second CD for the Hydros, the searing trans-Atlantic collision of Midwest legend Scott Morgan (The Rationals, Scott Morgan Band and Sonic's Rendezvous Band) and Dutchmen Theo Brouwer and Tony Slug (the latter two from Loveslug and the Nitwitz.) Hellacopters guitarist Nicke Royale was behind the traps on the first album, "Parts Unknown", but makes way for young Michigan skinsman Andrew Frost on this one. And it's a certified, solid gold, no filler, killer.

From the bruising opener, "Ready to Ball", you know this is going to hit you between the eyes. While any other band might be accused of trading on the past by including half a dozen Sonic's Rendezvous Band covers among the 14 tracks that grace this disc (I know you're out there Freddie!), this band does them so god damn well that such criticism is rendered redundant.

Where the Hydros manage to surprise is by mixing up the remaining seven tunes with liberal lashings of horns, chick vocals and SOUL (bucketloads of it.) I suppose that's not so much of a surprise, considering Scott Morgan's background (The Rationals' cover of "Respect" remaining the definitive one, in this book.) His remains one of rock's most soulful voices.

There's an "Exile" era, Stones feel to "Tumbling Down" and "Soulbone" that makes them runaway winners, while "Hustlin'" stands up with some of Morgan's best solo band stuff. (If you don't believe me, check out the startlingly good retrospective collection "Medium Rare" on Real O-Mind.) The mystery cut, "Starvin'", could well be a latter-day Rationals outtake.

The guitars sting and the engine room cooks. Frost might lack some of his predecessor's manic fills but is rock solid and every bit as powerful. Tony Slug's production gives ample space to the guitars, even if Morgan's vocals are a little back in parts of the mix.

What else do you need to know? Go and buy it. - The Barman

Monday, February 2, 2009

B.G.K. - video ?

An "International event" Aug. 8th 1984 at the Olympic Auditorium with the Dead Kennedys (US) as headliners, B.G.K. (NL), Raw Power (Italy), Riistetyt (who had "gone glam" and renamed themselves to "Holy Dolls" for the occasion) out of Finland, plus our friends Reagan Youth (US) and Solucion Mortal (Mexico). For unknown reasons, and much to their dismay, our tour mates Cause For Alarm were denied a slot on the bill.

About 8000 kids went absolutely flywheel BERSERK.

During our set I observed 7 or 8 individual slam pits each 100-200 ft in diameter, all bouncing and clashing into one another like swirling galaxies colliding. Things nearly got out of hand when our singer Rene invited the crowd to "rush the bouncers" and get up on stage to show them "we're not rockstars". That's just great, now we got 200 mohawked lunkheads slamming on stage, twiddling with the machineheads of my bass, and turning the classic L.A. stagedive into a "see how far I can run on people's heads with combat boots on" contest.

Video footage of this mayem DOES exist ! It was intended to appear on a Flipside video fanzine but a Euro (actually, UK) release of this somehow fell through. If anyone can hook a brother up with (some of) this footage I'd be eternally grateful.

Highlights of that night include one member of aforementioned Finnish band getting pounded by L.A. cops for replying the immortal words "Fuck you, I'm from Finland !" when ordered to "spreadeagle, motherfucker!". I guess he didn't know what the word "spreadeagle" ment, or didn't realize you NEVER say "fuck you" to an mirrorshades at night wearing L.A. cop waving a nightstick in your face. Most likely both.
Maybe you had to be there think it was funny though.

Our singer also got busted for saying 'cheers to that' raising the beer in his hand outside the venue and smiling at the cops. We had to bail his knucklehead ass out the next day for $ 75,- ..Just in time for another L.A. show at the Cathay de Grande. Rene said he made new friends in the drunktank and that they were all "really cool black guys".

B.G.K. @ Cathay de Grande, Aug 1984. Left to right : Sluggy (b), Steven (g), Rene (v)

On that same US tour we were invited to do a "live at Target" video set in San Francisco, which I was ALL FOR, but after the usual democratic vote cast (which I ALWAYS lost) the band declined this offer in true "that's too commercial" DIY blunderpunk fashion. Oh well. Nothing you wouldn't expect from a band that also turned down the chance to open for Motorhead because "they draw a metal crowd, and we don't like metal". Playing this mega Olympic show set up by a big time coke dealer businessman named Gary Tovar wasn't a problem, though. I admit the guy's "Goldenvoice Productions" company paid for our work permits.

I also recall vividly how fanatical certain people in our own entourage tried to convince me "this music isn't about making money, man !" after I complained about not even owning my own amplifier, and having to play/borrow cheap low volume transistor amps from opening bands. I wanted that bass to sound like Grand Funk Railroad but it came off sounding like a banjo. I guess they decided my songs weren't even mine. Meanwhile we were giving away THOUSANDS and THOUSANDS of dollars in squatter "benefit" shows and "no more censorship fund" funds.

The very same zealots ended up owning not uncommercial companies such as this and this. Hypocrites !!
Moreover, they flat out refused to carry the 100 % DIY Nitwitz/Hellacopters release on my own label almost 2 decades later because it wasn't politically correct enough.

Boy that's ironic.

Sluggy tells you no lies.

Notes to self : Recite story of playing the 1984 democratic convention in Dallas with the DK's while stoned out of my gourd.
Recite story of playing the 4th of July 1984 in Washington DC.

Loveslug / Skin Yard split

This split single came out on glitterhouse Records in Europe (black vinyl) and on Rave Records in the U.S. (yellow vinyl), in press runs of 1000 or 1500 each. The Loveslug track was produced by Kent Steedman of Celibate Rifles fame, who would resurface 20 years later playing on the Hydromatics album "the Earth is Shaking" as guitarist. Either way, this track is all that remains of Loveslug's ill-fated "Rauchende Colts" recording sessions that were intended as a 12" release. Eventually, the studio kept begging/bugging us for money ("hurry hurry hurry with payment, else you won't get the tapes!"), but when we came by to pick up the master tapes, it turned out the studio had gone bankrupt and mister tax man had confiscated everything.

Bye bye master tapes. Bye bye 4 grand.

No release means no tour. Thanks !

It wouldn't be the first time that happened though. The 2 inch tapes of the unfinished 3d B.G.K. album (that we had bought and were OUR property) later turned out to be erased or have some panflute radio jingle crap on them. Only two cassette tapes of those sessions rermain and are in my possession. They may be available for download here on Slug Trails someday.
Either way, Jack Endino's band Skin Yard (Funny : Google wants to know "did you mean SKYNYRD ?") takes the flip with a tonguetwister track called 'Psychoriflepowerhypnotized (live)'. Jack lifted the artwork from a government issued poster seen on the streets of amsterdam that apparently amused him greatly : It was the heyday of the first Dutch techno/rave scene, and the poster has "drugs are bad, mmmkay?" warning/message. Not in a "don't do drugs" or "if you are caught with drugs you will go to jail" kind of way, but in a "make sure your drugs are good and not cut up with poison, so PLEASE get them tested at mobile city council healthcare testing lab stations at your nearest rave party" only-in-Amsterdam kind of way.

No fooling, folks. Times have since changed considerably, I will assure you.

V/A - Als je haar maar goed zit

This legendary compilation LP came out on the Nitwitz own Vögelspin 'label' in May 1982, shortly before the band morphed into B.G.K. sans vocalist Eric Peters, who went on to start a "fun punk" band called Outrageous with Frankie Sloos (who was to become Loveslug's drummer later). 1500 copies were pressed. It contains 3 Nitwitz tracks that capture - to my knowledge - the fastest 4/4 drumbeat ever recorded. No fooling people, it's manically INSANE. Anyways, the material on this LP re-appeared entirely on this bootleg but you can purchase a digitized, legal copy here if you don't want to fetch out $ 200 on Ebay.

V/A - Network of Friends vol. 2

Another bootleg.
This one has a B.G.K. song called "Computer control". Not sure if it's the studio version taken from "Welcome to 1984" or a live recording.

V/A - Network of Friends

This bootleg appeared first as a double album, and was re-released in CD format on Plastic Bomb records.

Thanks for stealing my shit, "friends".

V/A - The Basement Tapes

Track List
Loveslug - You sexy thing
Big Paulus - Get down (live)
Black Label - Come back
Speedloop - Stuck in the middle
The Nitwitz - Get there first
The Sgeurvreters - Kidnapper
Rude Rich & The Highnotes - Lion of Judah(live)
Loveslug - Bimb-o-rama MTV
The Hydromatics - Heaven (live)
Black Label - You'll have to wait
Big Paulus - Baby, now that I found you
Speedloop - You make me feel (mighty real)
The Sgeurvreters - Ramble
Rude Rich & The Highnotes - Man next door
The Nitwitz/ feat. DJ Mike - Surfin' on Insuline

Serious cross-fertilisation on this, ahem, star-studded compilation :
  • Loveslug drummer Frankie Sloos is in Big Paulus
  • Theo Brouwer (Big Paulus) also played on the Nitwitz, Speedloop, Sgeurvreters, and Hydromatics cuts. He is now in the Consultants
  • "DJ" Mike was in Loveslug
  • Benito Gasolini (RIP): Nitwitz, Speedloop


Sunday, February 1, 2009

V/A - 100% Pure Dutch punk hardcore

Yay ! Another bootleg.
I'm not sure if this originates from that Belgian guy who once wrote me "requesting permission" for his label to re-release both "Als je haar maar goed zit" compilations "else I'll do it anyways" or if these street urchin punk assholes are responsible for this release. It has GOT to be mastered off vinyl because if I can't get the source tapes, no one can.

The pressing plant identification number on each of these CDs has been painstakingly, manually erased with an engraver, so they knew they did something naughty/illegal.

So much for the bootleggers 'argument' that "we're doing it for the scene, man". No, you don't do it for "the scene". You do it to make money. Money off MY hard work and efforts. As the bootleggers from "punk rock from Holland" LP state literally in the liner notes, even. Funny how these bootlegs seem to get better distribution than legit releases btw. Anywhooo, there's tunes by both the Nitwitz and B.G.K. on this thing from 1981 and 1983 respectively.

Don't buy this shit folks.

Holy Sheep - video

The Holy Sheep were a great band from Leon, Spain whose album was produced by yours truly. Pianist extraordinaire Eugene "Thunderbolt" McCarthy would end up as the Nitwitz' tour driver. The band made a videoclip for one of the tracks taken from that album, titled "we'll save rocknroll". Enjoy.

BGK - Jonestown Aloha

B.G.K's debut album "Jonestown Aloha" was recorded in late 1982. The title was of course an admittedly morbid play on the Jonestown Mass Suicide. This album was released in 1983 on our own Vögelspin "label" in a press run of 3000 copies. A US release followed a year later on M.D.C.'s R Radical records and that one sold a poopload more (I hear 14,000 copies, some royalties would be nice comrades, share a little of the wealth ?). The material resurfaced yet once more in the year 2001, as part of "A Dutch Feast, the complete works of Balthasar Gerards Kommando" on Alternative Tentacles records. I hate that stupid title.
Track List:
1. Pray For Peace And Kill For Christ (1.21)
2. Holiday In Lebanon (0.57)
3. Isolatiefolter (1.07)
4. Honor & Justice (1.47)
5. Race Riot (1.11)
6. Buy Or Die (1.11)
7. Arms Race (1.08)
8. Electroshock (1.36)
9. Allegiance To No-One (3.02)
10. Freeze Me (1.26)
11. Police Crimes (1.41)
12. Spray Paint (1.08)
13. Vivisection (2.14)
14. Membership (1.07)
15. Up To You (1.10)
16. Regering (Krijg De Tering) (1.19)
17. Soylent Green (2.41)
18. Tout Les Flics (1.24)
19. Get Killed (1.46)
20. Pill Party (1.33)



V/A - I'm sure we're gonna make it

Bloody Revolutions scribbled the following shit :
"I'm Sure We're Gonna Make It" is a compilation-cd with singles of Dutch first generation punkbands (1977-1982). These singles are often self-released in a limited edition. The CD is a 1996 Epitaph release. This CD goes with the book "Het Gejuich Was Massaal" ("The Cheering Was Massive"), ("the crowd roared" or "the applause was deafening" would be a more accurate translation - TS) the history of punk in The Netherlands, compiled by Jerry Goossens and Jeroen Vedder ( - no relation to Eddie, TS) and published by Stichting Popmuziek Nederland & Uitgeverij Jan Mets, Amsterdam in 1996.
Thank you Bloody Revolutions.
This CD was promptly (almost instantly upon it's release) bootlegged in the form of a double album titled "Killed by Epitaph".
The Nitwtz track came off the "Wielingen Walgt" live 12" (recorded live february 1981) and was mastered off pure, poppin-and-a-crackling vinyl ! Btw, that bass intro is all downstrokes, homes. Goes to show some things never change.

"I'm sure we're gonna make it" arguably is thee motherload for fans of obscure, early Lowlander punk.

Track Listing:
1. Ivy Green - I'm Sure We're Gonna Make It (3.44)
2. Helmettes - I Don't Care What The People Say (2.16)
3. Panic - Requiem For Martin Heidegger (2.47)
4. Flyin' Spiderz - City Boy (2.34)
5. Speedtwins - Football Song (3.00)
6. Paul Tornado - Van Agt Casanova (1.39)
7. Suzannes - Teenage Abortion (1.48)
8. Tits - Daddy Is My Pusher (2.26)
9. Mollesters - Plastic (1.49)
10. Filth - Don't Hide Your Hate (1.32)
11. God's Heart Attack - Treat Me Like A Doll (2.18)
12. Helmettes - Half Twee (1.53)
13. Mecano Ltd. - Face Cover Face (2.12)
14. Subway - Jesus Loves Me (But I Don't Care) (2.06)
15. Mort Subite - Ich Liebe Ulrike (2.19)
16. The Brommers - Miracles (3.49)
17. BVD - Look Out The Cops (1.19)
18. Shith - She's By My Side (2.48)
19. Coitus Int. - I Shouldn't Go (4.33)
20. Vopo´s - Menten (1.39)
21. The Ex - Human Car (2.08)
22. Nixe - Searching (1.42)
23. Rondos - A Black And White Statement (2.40)
24. Nitwitz - I'm So Lazy (1.40)
25. Tröckener Kecks - Lang Zo Aardig Niet (1.56)
26. Frites Modern - Bionic Adventure (1.44)

Sonny Vincent - Good Dogs Die Young

Oh, I play on this thing too. The sanity shredding 10 week(!) European tour with Sonny, Spencer P. Jones of the Beasts of Bourbon and Gary Taylor from Britmetallers Tank was an Odyssey of Pain worth writing a book about itself, so Big Papa Slug shall open up a bag of Werther's candies and start reminiscing soon.

Sonny Vincent, Jayne County, Sluggy with honky fro, Spencer P. "P stands for puzzled look" Jones and Gary Taylor in Madrid, Spain 1995

Apparently some tracks were recorded in Hannover, Germany. Can't remember a damn thing. This record came out in 1997 or so. Somebody send me a copy please...
Please ?
(pass is 'radiobirdman' or 'offlimits')

Loveslug - Loser Bar video

Loveslug performs "Loser Bar" in Voerde, Germany 1990.
Oekel is on guitar, Frank Sloos on drums, Mike de Veer plays bass.