reviews april 2002

Keith John Adams, Memory (Flitwick) 7"

There can’t be many lyrics, except for the odd sea shanty, that feature the line "keep my tiller even." There’s undoubtedly fewer still, and probably no shanties at all, that couple it with the plea "memory be good to me." And it’s a dead cert that if Syd Barrett never chanced across this particular combination, Keith John Adams is the only bloke ever to wrestle a psychedelic folk tune around the words and make it sound like it should be on Top of the Pops to boot. PO Box 26, Flitwick, Beds, MK45 1ZU

Spraydog, Girls Know Girls (Stupid Cat) 7"

Stupid Cat? Spraydog? We only need Rolf Harris and the Animals and Electronic Brains Hospital can finally open. 7pm every Monday and Thursday. The slow brain fade slot. If Rolf doesn’t show, we can still have Dear ‘Dog, a weekly phone in where Spraydog answer viewers’ questions to a soundtrack of lackadaisical swirling guitar pop. Q: Dear ‘Dog, why can’t I even be friends with a girl? A: "Girls know girls, it’s true, better than boys do." Simple when you know how. New album Mint Hand is out now too. 29 Lawton Rd, London, E10 6RR

Rotator, Help Me To Keep Up Destruction (Broklyn Beats) 7"

Chicken Boogie, on the underside of this apocalyptic barrage of thrice-spliced noise and aggrobeats, is the best track I have ever heard. No contest. Like a Duracell enema, it is the direct injection of raw power to a highly sensitive and receptive organ. Unlike a Duracell enema, it does not involve shoving anything up your arse – although there’s no reason why you shouldn’t do that if it helps. 440 Broadway #3R, Brooklyn, NY 11211, USA

My Legendary Girlfriend, Unfashionably Hi-Fi (Short Fuse) 7"

My legendary girlfriend, Donna Donnelly, is out in the garden. She’s planting some flowers in the patch of bare earth where last year I planted the flowers. I like to think it was a successful wild garden. Donna secretly thinks it was a weed’s paradise. Actually that’s not true. She pretty vocally thinks it was a weed’s paradise and she’s determined that it won’t be the same this year. Which is why I’m relegated to digging holes, repairing the fence and carrying stuff to the bin. Or skulking around inside going through this pile of 7" singles and thinking that My Legendary Girlfriend would probably have been able to grow proper flowers if they’d tried. They seem to be able to do more or less whatever else they turn their hand to. The pick of these pick’n’mix (pop, reggae and did someone say XTC?) tunes is Hey Adric! where the title’s Fall leanings are belied by music’s the outer space funk. 42 Seymour Rd, Nottingham, NG2 5EK

3jane, Thereminians (Sorted) 7"

Thereminians? Sounds like the underclass in a society governed by an elite gang of Star Trek theme tune obsessives. Sort of. Try again. Thereminians? Sounds like a record made by a gang of Star Trek theme tune obsessives (who will no doubt tell me that the instrument used for the Star Trek theme was, in fact, a persimmonbell model 4.2b or something) with a sideline in modern skank. PO Box 5922, Leicester, Le1 6XU

The Beale, The New 7 Up (Guided Missile) 7"

7 Up used to contain Lithium. During the Great Depression, sales rocketed. Its name was changed from something agrochemical to 7 Up because it was sold in 7 oz bottles and the bubbles rose. How literal. I am a mine of information. The Beale probably contain Lithium. Or some other substances. Their sales have not rocketed. I’d guess. They have changed their name at various points. If they were to do so again, and desired to be as literal as 7 Up, I’d suggest Piss Up. I am not a mine of useful suggestions. The Beale sound like an accident in a Joy Division factory and feature Adrian R. Shaw of The Teenbeat on shouting. 340 Athlon Rd, Alperton, Middlesex, HA0 1BX

Saloon, Free Fall (Track and Field) 7"

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. I can confidently say that’s the first time Mr Petty has been mentioned in these pages. He released a single called Free Falling in 1989. Thankfully, Saloon have sense enough not to echo that particular record’s histrionic mundanity even if they have managed, by titular effort alone managed to cement the bastard in the back of my head. Free Fall and, on the other side, Movimento are two more in the long procession of rattlingly great tunes Saloon seem to slough off their guitar/synth coupling with consummate ease. Krautrockdreampop of the kind you’d have been loving on Too Pure ten years ago.

The Rook, Who Spoke Evil (Aces High) 7"

Who Spoke Evil and The River are the sound of Jon Spencer rehearsing in the cellar two floors below, a muffled and distended racket echoing through the central heating pipes and amplified by your radiator. This is subterranean blues and it sounds amazing. On the other two tracks, Tobias Harvey and his mates restrain themselves, cut back on the sawn-off riffs and electrified yelping, and deliver two softly-softly folkish Western numbers. Ground Floor Flat, 95 Devenport Rd, London, W12 8PB

Xylex, Electronic Glue Gun (Doomation) 7"

Mel and Kim and Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley. That’s my youth right there in 7 words. The Police disco for under-18s down The Cornbow in Halesowen was the location. The Misses Appleby and The House Sounds of Chicago were the soundtrack. Conspicuous failure to attract girls was the usual outcome. Dancing like a Thunderbird was probably the cause. In retrospect, looking like Joe 90 probably didn’t help much either. Electronic Glue Gun convinces me that Xylex probably had similar experiences. He’s certainly holding a grudge against the 80s for some reason. Why else would he be flailing Mel, Kim and Steve to within an inch of their lives with his sampler? Why else would he be decimating and then stitching his record collection up in mismatched Frankenstein ways? Listen to this record is like sticking all your 7" singles in a tumble dryer, turning it on and then sticking your head in as well. It is incredible. No idea where you get it from. You could try DJ Ordeal (

Ward, Sesquipedalian Origins (Static Caravan) 7"

Sensation: It’s the long-lost Satie/Reich collaboration, Three Minute Concerto For Solo Piano and Photocopier. Beguiling in its simplicity and uncompromising in its treatment of the listener, Sesquipedalian Origins sucks you in, reproduces your arse in grainy black and white and pins copies up all round your office. You will not be the same person after listening to this record twice. I guarantee it. Information: Blue Vinyl, 500 copies. Ward are Meme and Richard Williams of Calvados Beam Trio.


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