Eagle Johnson & Clean Machine “Tennessee Beach” ( Independent, 2018)

Faecal Microbial Transfer. There. I’ve said it. I’m not saying that this debut album from Eagle Johnson & Clean Machine is shit. In fact, the opposite is true: it’s excellent! It’s just that when I say I have a gut feeling about this band, it reminds me of the feeling in his gut that Jeff Leach, anthropologist and founder of the Human Food Project, and American Gut, experienced whilst out on a field trip with the last hunter-gatherers on the planet – the Hadza of East Tanzania. Now, some might say that East Nashville, where Eagle flies, or East Tanzania, ain’t that different in their own sweet, way. They’re both pretty wild. Ask Todd Snider! Anyhoo, engaged with his quest to research the human microbiome, in his enthusiasm, out in the bush, Jeff scooped up a steaming pile of fresh poo, deposited by one of his Hadza guides, with a turkey baster and fired said ca-ca deep into his own rectum and gastro-intestinal system. Continue reading “Eagle Johnson & Clean Machine “Tennessee Beach” ( Independent, 2018)”

Coal Minor Canary “The 3:42 EP” (Coal Minor Canary, 2017)

I’m down with the legendary Quentin Crisp. The great man once said that “There is no need to do any housework, because after four years the dirt doesn’t get any worse.” I agree wholeheartedly. Just what is it with dust? You wipe it up. Then, a few days later, you have to do it again. Where does the bloody stuff come from? Crisp also said: “I never spend time doing anything today that I’ll have to do tomorrow.” What a great philosophy. Perhaps if I was a Canary flying through the trees, I would be liberated from the mundane task of housework. David Hage is a singer-songwriter from North Eastern Pennsylvania who records under the moniker of Coal Minor Canary. He knows a thing or two about dust: coal dust. He describes his tunes as being “dusty, black diamond music.” Continue reading “Coal Minor Canary “The 3:42 EP” (Coal Minor Canary, 2017)”

Tokyo Rosenthal “This Minstrel Life” (Rock and Sock Records, 2017)

How do baseball players stay in touch? They touch base every once in a while! I have to admit I know absolutely diddly about this fabled sport. But I know a man who does. Tokyo Rosenthal, or Toke, as he is known to his friends and fans, is da man. Musician, sports fan, former boxing promoter and poet: as well as releasing many albums – This Minstrel Life – is his seventh CD; this Renaissance man is also the author of two books. A massive New York Yankees fan, A Fauxtographer’s Yankee Stadium Memoir is an account of his time as a photographer at the original Yankee Stadium, when he managed to blag a photo-pass in the late seventies and went to watch the sacred game free each week for five seasons. Continue reading “Tokyo Rosenthal “This Minstrel Life” (Rock and Sock Records, 2017)”

Jack Tempchin “Jack Tempchin” (Floating World, 2017)

As the man who wrote Peaceful Easy Feeling for The Eagles, Jack Tempchin won the composition lottery. As well as drinking champagne from ladies shoes and lighting cigars with $100 bills, he then found time to make his own long-playing record. Jack’s eponymously named solo album from 1978 was recorded at FAME studios in Muscle Shoals with a host of fabulous musicians supporting him in his endeavour. But subsequently the album got lost in one of those record company reshuffles, when executive legend Clive Davis, who’d signed him to Arista (originally as a member of the Funky Kings), left the company. Its subsequent release in 2017 prompts two burning questions. Who are the mega-stars who helped him record it? Is this album worth digging deep for and slapping your hard-earned dosh down on the counter of Our Price? (This and other record shops may not be available.) Continue reading “Jack Tempchin “Jack Tempchin” (Floating World, 2017)”

Heather Lynne Horton + Michael McDermott, Water Rats, London, 25th September 2017

“If you’d told me ten years ago, that I would put a song on one of my records about my kid, I would have thrown up!” was how Michael McDermott introduced his song ‘Willie Rain’, about the daughter that he and Heather Lynne Horton so obviously adore more than anything on earth, even each other; and that’s saying something, as the love and affection they have for one another is sooo evident from the way they relate to each other onstage. Continue reading “Heather Lynne Horton + Michael McDermott, Water Rats, London, 25th September 2017”

Daniel Wylie’s Cosmic Rough Riders “Scenery For Dreamers” (You Are The Cosmos, 2017)

There’s a track on this fabulously rocking album that reminds me of the day I went round to Crusty Nick’s house to get my piercings done. Before you could say abracadabra, he’d installed an Apadravya and a Prince Albert, (as a tribute to the great man, after watching the TV series Victoria), plus the obligatory nipple rings, with a length of chain connecting the two. Nick said “you’ll be the jingle jangle man when I’m finished with ya’.” He wasn’t wrong. So when Daniel Wylie asks ‘Where is the jingle jangle morning?’ on the Neil Young-meets-the-Flaming-Groovies-on-a-wild-night-out sounding ‘Jingle Jangle Morning’, I can tell him: right here, mate. Every bleeding morning there’s a jingle jangle now. Or at least there will be after I get the chain untangled from my chest hair. Continue reading “Daniel Wylie’s Cosmic Rough Riders “Scenery For Dreamers” (You Are The Cosmos, 2017)”

GospelbeacH “Another Summer of Love” (Alive Records, 2017)

The last time I saw Sid Vicious alive was in a supermarket just around the corner from his squat at New Court in Hampstead. He’d been on Top of The Pops with the Sex Pistols the day before, playing ‘Pretty Vacant’ and flashed a massive roll of fivers at me as he paid for his shopping. He said: “You’re still a fucking hippy then? When are you going to get your hair cut?” If Sid was still with us, he’d probably have said the very same thing to GospelbeacH. “Oi! Rademaker! Get yer hair cut!” Continue reading “GospelbeacH “Another Summer of Love” (Alive Records, 2017)”

Interview: GospelbeacH

GospelbeacH are the Californian band (via Tampa) who blew our socks off on their recent UK tour. Their good friend Miranda Lee Richards was their support, and both artists played together each night. What a divine bill! GospelbeacH were formed from the ashes of Beechwood Sparks, (who recently reformed for a twentieth anniversary gig out in the Mojave desert) who themselves came together after The Tyde split. They recently released their adorable second album Another Summer of Love which has been receiving love worldwide. Continue reading “Interview: GospelbeacH”

The Whiskey Charmers “The Valley” (Sweet Apple Pie, 2017)

They may not have invited the audience to lick peanut butter off their chests like Iggy Pop, but Detroit band The Whiskey Charmers hold their former neighbour in high esteem. “Clearly Iggy Pop is doing something right. It’s really inspiring to see that he is still out there performing at age 70 and still shirtless. This might be a great way to connect with our audience,” reckons singer Carrie Shepherd, suggesting that guitarist Lawrence Daversa be the first one in the band to try it out.  Continue reading “The Whiskey Charmers “The Valley” (Sweet Apple Pie, 2017)”

Heather Lynne Horton “Don’t Mess with Mrs Murphy” (At The Helm, 2017)

“When a man gives his opinion, he’s a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she’s a bitch!” so Bette Davis remarked some years ago. Thankfully things have improved since then. Not so much third wave feminism, perhaps nearer to a new wave of alt-country, Heather Lynne Horton has championed the maxim – Women are equal to everything – for just as long as Lord Hale has. Continue reading “Heather Lynne Horton “Don’t Mess with Mrs Murphy” (At The Helm, 2017)”