Author – Azrael Abyss

Hollywood Sessions 130

Ah, Song Poem records. Like the parent who’s never there for you yet you still seek their company. I have no idea why I still buy these. I’d try to argue that I have a particular weakness for this fuzzy felt stock sleeve, but let’s face it, even if it’d had one of the more […]

Mike & Pam Martin: Fernwood Pacific

Before giving in completely to my soft side a couple years ago I often felt seriously conflicted about records like this. I’d sit listening with an odd mixture of emotions; somewhere between “Well this is nice” & “Jesus Christ where the fuck have my balls gone?!?”. I just hadn’t quite fully ascended to the higher […]

Bob Pratt: Wingless Bluebird!

A brief recount of the things that went through my head as I pulled this record after about 90 minutes of fruitless digging & breathing in of mummified cockroaches bodies… Holy lord. There is no way this is as awesome as it looks. No way. Definite boner. Jesus. Is this what daily excessive drinking will […]

V/A: The Planets

A few weeks ago I had to be out of my apartment for the better part of the afternoon due to a planned power outage on my street. As I stood around that morning watching people panic as they realized the electric gate wasn’t going to open so they could get their cars out of […]

Westwood Golden Mustang Chorus: 1979

Well, you can tell by the way I use my walk, I’m a woman’s man: no time to talk. Music loud and women warm, I’ve been kicked around since I was born. Youngster Paul Holdeman sings these words with some serious swagger. But just when you’re ready to take his five bucks, walk into Safeway, […]

Spring Concert ’67

I’m pretty sure I originally bought this because it had a rather crudely hand decorated back cover with ancient pictures of school girls and a birthday inscription of some sort. It was in rough shape so I probably justified the purchase by telling myself I could always give it to a friend who I tend […]

Bill & Jean Bradway: Gospel Hawaiianaires

I guess it’s pretty fair to say that as of 2010 I’ve become a bit jaded when it comes to records. The sense of anything being possible I used to feel when walking into a strange Goodwill has all but left me. There was certainly a time when flipping to a dude in a bow […]

Savannah: Crank It Up

Prior to verifying the Bob Berry production credits & dedication to Tommy Bolin on the back I’d momentarily assumed this was some newfangled overly retro hipster thing that had somehow managed to become authentically ringworn. I mean, you have to admit, the band bears an uncanny resemblance to the male cast members of Fox’s “That […]

Arian Calandra

Charmingly disjointed Uni-Bomber looking dude who had me from the very first listen. Half the tracks have vocals and should appeal to anyone with a soft spot for oddball sincerity. There is an off-kilter feeling that, combined with his sunny themes, I just find super pleasant and refreshing. The rest is instrumental guitar improvisations which […]

Alice Armand – Erica Sings

I still don’t quite know what to make of this after a few years and quite a few listens. According to the liner notes “after 8 years of living in the wilderness of her Adirondack farm” the 1940’s movie starlet was spontaneously inspired to write and record music “as the result of some happening”. Bewildering, […]

Na Mele A Ka Haku (Music of Haku)

I brought this home last month tucked in a pile of ordinary slack-key & ukulele jammers. With the first needle drop it was fairly apparent this was a whole other thing. By the time I’d finished side 2 I was less sure than ever what on earth I’d just listened to. One thing’s for sure […]

The Now: Muse

I often forget the life of a record; The years, or even decades of indifference between it’s conception and the redemption of it’s re-discovery. I suppose it’s totally understandable that a sort of cooling-off period is needed before an era can be stripped of it’s personal baggage and viewed somewhat objectively. In fact, I’m not […]

Virgin Release: Turn It Down/Hey Now!

OK, so, for whatever reason, lately I’ve felt guilty that I rarely contribute any content to my own website anymore. It happenes sometimes and I’m sure it’ll pass but in the meantime you’ll have to forgive my desperate, half-assed stabs at writing about records I no longer own in genres I know zero about. For […]

Terry Telson: While In Exile

I just don’t quite understand dudes dropping a G plus on motherfuckers like BIXBY while records like Terry Telson are still out there getting little to no shine. He’s lonely, too broke to afford a full-color sleeve, and yours for a mere fraction of the price. What more do you need? Seriously though, this is […]

Billings West High School: Spring Band Concert 1962

‘Nuther school record on the famed Century custom label.┬áTo be quite honest this almost completely sucks except for a rather epic exotica workout called “Voodoo”. [Audio clip: view full post to listen]

Sonoma Valley Jazz Band: Spectacular ’74

Surprisingly great High School record from right in my own backyard that I’d never come across ’til recently. Sleeve is scant on info but it seems to be split between two local schools of which the kids on side B especially get down like nobody’s business. Very together playing and well chosen covers really set […]

University of California Men’s Octet

As someone who barely eeked through High School and later dropped out of Community College to pursue a career in alcoholism and record collecting I sometimes find myself idly wondering: might it have all turned out differently had I stayed in school? But unlike hobos ’round the campfire, or pool cleaners, who might focus on […]

Relly Coloma: Pretty Baby Cha Cha

If you’re anything like me you’ll buy pretty much any record from a foreign country provided it costs a dollar or less. I suppose this is cheaper than traveling for leisure, but still, it adds up – if only in stacks of embarrassingly bland pop vocal records sung in an exotic tongue. Anyhow, it was […]

Problems of Adolescence: A Guide For Teacher-Led Discussion

Unintentionally(?) over the top and hilarious Teacher’s Aid lp from the 60’s highlighting various “problems” the modern teacher/parent might face. It’s all acted out in skits which have a bizarre, stilted, almost John Waters-esque melodrama factor, and few if any seem to actually have any closure or teach any lesson. I’d give anything to be […]

Teen Challenge: Praise-In

As a second generation Orange Countian who squandered his youth on drugs I can’t help but identify with these youngsters in some strange way. Who knows, it could have totally been Rick from Anaheim* who rode shotgun that one time my Dad, hopped up on Angel Dust, hot-wired a car and cruised to the Long […]

Merrill Clark: Operating Engineer

A short bit of agonizing over whether or not to crack the seal followed my one dollar purchase of this local San Jose, CA bulldozer man lp. I guess it just seemed like another likely candidate for the better left to the imagination section. Glad my curiosity got the best of me though as it’s […]

Paul Becker & Hearing Things: Safe

Quirky local record with what has to be one of my favorite covers ever. Musically it’s a somewhat uneasy mix of ultra lightweight punk, bland AOR, and ballads with an almost prog bent. A tough one to figure out as there seems to be a whiff of novelty to it, but also some fairly sound […]

Les Moore: S/T

Decent folkie man from NOLA with an warbley, nasal voice. He’s got the lonely room ambiance, and his style is likable enough, but he sorta kinda comes up short in the song department. Oddly enough it’s his cover of Lennon’s “A Day in the Life” that sticks with ya. If some of his originals took […]