THE KICKSTANDS – Black Boots & Bikes [1964]

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”The Kickstands were one of writer and producer Gary Usher’s studio amalgams that made use of veteran L.A. session players in the early to mid-’60s to produce album after album of hot rod and surf tunes. With players from the so-called Wrecking Crew, including Jerry Cole, Hal Blaine, Steve Douglas, Earl Palmer, Leon Russell, Glen Campbell, and with Chuck Girard handling most of the vocals, the Kickstands officially released one album, Black Boots & Bikes, on Capitol Records. The album had a somewhat darker hue than most of Usher’s sunshine and surf productions, and tracks like “Death Valley Run” and “Slow Ride South” are definitely worth seeking out for fans of Usher and the hot rod/surf genre.” ~ Steve Leggett

 

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”Right from the start, it’s obvious the Black Boots and Bikes is different from the slew of other Usher projects. The mixes favor the growly saxes, the vocals have a harder edge some extra timpani and xylophones (?) add to the heaviness of the overall sound. Released at the peak of the Honda/Bike craze, all that’s missing from the album is an obligatory cover of “Little Honda” as the 12th track; though it’s absence may simply have been due simply to time restrictions as these albums were usually rushed out in a day. A gritty ‘Death Valley Run’ opens up the record and is noticeably than the Hondells original. Mike Curbs’ instrumental ‘Hill Climb’ follows very much along the same path chalk full of saxes and steady drums. ‘Mean Streak’ actually sounds pretty good here considering the album’s darker themes. The bouncy ‘Side Car’ features some excellent playing – presumably by Jerry Cole an ‘Two Wheel Show Stopper’ has some instresting dissonance from the background vocals which works well alongside the pounding drums a baritone saxes. ‘Haulin’ Honda’ is another instrumental and could be considered filler if it were’nt so dogone catchy. ‘Devil On Wheels’ features some castanets and, like ‘Mean Streak’, is compliented by the hard-rocking execution. ‘Ridin’ Trails’ also works well here before the album slows down on the Mexican ‘Slow Ride South.’ Collector’s may search out this album for the inclusion of the the original ‘Johnny Take Care’ which never reappeared on any Usher. Admittedly, it’s not hard to see why…. The fuzzed up ‘Scrambler’ closes the album.

 An oddity in the Usher canon, Black Boots and Bikes shows us the other side of the biker culture. Challenging the clean cut Beach Boys’ take on the sport, the Kickstands’ rendition is the more accurate, showing the dangers and the risks of the gang experience. That said, for surf/hot rod enthusiasts it warrents some attention only if you enjoy the wild hard-hitting sounds of other similar creations such as Mr. Gasser and the Weirdos or Dick Dale. For those on the Beach Boys, Terry Melcher side, better to pass this one up.” – J. T. [surfroute101]

 

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THE WEDGE – The Big, Bad, Boss Beat Of… [1980]

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Mini lp with 5 instrumental trax by this early 80s California surf revival band. Drummer Tom Brown was a member of 60s surf group The Illusions, well known from comps as Surfer’s Mood,  Surf Guitars Rumble, Diggin’ Out… but that’s another story. C’mon let’s surf again!

[Special thanx to The Wax Monger / Audiogasoline for vinyl rip]

 

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FLAMIN’ GROOVIES – Now [1978/2005 DBK]

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”While it took a long and torturous five years for the Flamin’ Groovies to find their way back to an American record deal with Shake Some Action, a year and a half later the band had a follow-up ready, and while 1978’s Flamin’ Groovies Now isn’t quite as cohesive as the album that preceded it, in many respects the band sounds at once tighter and more relaxed, with some time on the road firming up the rhythm section while giving the songs a bit more room to swing (which wasn’t one of the strong suits of the British Invasion bands that provided their aural template). The band lost guitarist James Ferrell during the post-Shake Some Action tour, but former Charlatans picker Mike Wilhelm proved to be a more than simpatico replacement on these sessions, and while leader Cyril Jordan didn’t come up with another new song as transcendent as “Shake Some Action,” “All I Wanted” comes pretty close. But it’s significant that most of the songs on Flamin’ Groovies Now are covers, and while all of them are played with love, enthusiasm, and the right period flair (especially the Beatles’ “There’s a Place,” Paul Revere & the Raiders’ “Ups and Downs,” and “Move It,” an early U.K. hit for Cliff Richard), they give the album a feeling of being padded, and just because covering the Rolling Stones rarity “Blue Turns to Grey” was a good idea didn’t mean the Flamin’ Groovies had any business tackling “Paint It Black.” All in all, Flamin’ Groovies Now is a terrific-sounding record that captures a fine band when it was in great form.” [Mark Deming]

 

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”After their power pop masterpiece Shake Some Action (1976), the Groovies did actually release two equally great albums, Now (1978) and Jumpin’ in the Night (1979) both in the same winning style as Action: Brit invasion, early rock’n’roll and Byrds jangle, done with enough attitude to compete with current punk scene.”

”This 1978 Sire album, produced by Dave Edmunds, put the Groovies back on the map as the band won fervent praise on both sides of the Atlantic. They apply their fiery British Invasion-inspired sound to the Rolling Stones’ Paint It Black ; the Byrds’ Feel a Whole Lot Better ; the Beatles’ There’s a Place , and a bunch of original tunes.”

 

UK version of Lp with different tracks listing

UK version with different tracks listing

 

As you probably know, there are different versions of this Lp but don’t worry, everything’s here. 15 trax with some personal favs: Between the Lines, Take Me Back, Good Laugh Mun, Yeah My Baby, All I Wanted. Now… Dig!!!

 

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UNITED STATES OF EXISTENCE [80s Garage/Psych Revival]

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”Psych ’80’s band from Baltimore, MD. collection looks to be the band’s only-ever released effort ‘Introducing’ with a handful of extra tracks tagged on. Tunes that I got the most out of were “Makin’ My Scene” (should’ve been a major hit), “Bad Roads At Midnight”, the well-played “Welcome Tomorrow, “Goodbye Today”, “Volunteer Fireman”, “In Classic Play” and a couple of tracks that remind me of The Seeds “Shadows Of Rainbows” and “Return To The Psychedelic”. Couldn’t help but to notice that this CD has a must-experience psych / pop feel to it. Should draw in fans of the Left Banke, John’s Children, Chesterfield Kings, Marshmallow Overcoat and possibly Plasticland. An off-the-radar band that’s definitely, worth checking out.”

”Collection of the titles they wrote from 78 to 87, including the Bam Caruso LP, wich was already a collection, and the sampler titles from ”Battle of the garage”, ”Rebel kind” and ”Dimensions of sound”. Plus an unreleased title and an unreleased track by the progressive band they tried to be before they made their coming out.
The sound is great, unique, a little reminiscing of Plasticland who had the same obsessions: 6O’s psychedelia and krautrock.”

”Amazing vintage psyche pop vibe with this album. Turn on the lava lamp and sit back. Non-stop cool.”

You can hear all the cool 60’s garage/psych vibes of The Seeds, Electric Prunes, Strawberry Alarm Clock, The Castaways… Check ’em out!!!

 

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THE JOLT – st [1978] + Singles

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”Band from Glasgow, Scotland formed in 1976, put together by a young local newspaper journalist, drummer Iain Shedden, singer/guitarist Robert Collins and bassist Jim Doak. They started out playing 1960s covers and then sped up their music, playing a mix of punk rock and power pop. The band built up its following playing at the Crown Hotel, Wishaw. They enjoyed moderate success during the punk and early new wave era. They moved to London, England and signed to Polydor Records. They opened for bands such as The Jam, The Saints, Generation X and The Motors. They were precursors to the mod revival, which came to fruition around 1979, the year the band split.” [wiki]

History of the Jolt [from Punk 77]

Killer Mod Punks. Vinyl rip!!!

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The album is dedicated “to the memory of the Saturday lunch times at Wishaw”.

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GHETTO WAYS – Wicked Singles Collection [2009]

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More of these NY cats wyld garage punk stuff in this killer collection of singles issued on Wicked Singles Records in 2006/7, Party Down, Winks & Blue Eyeshadow, Free Love and The Party Bag. ”It’a soul trash rock’n’roll deathbeam full of nitty-gritty dirty soul and proto-punk rock”. As my friend Garner said, they have that Detroit vibe alongside NY back alley feel. They’re dangerous, sexy and yeah… wicked !!! 13 furious trax all under 2 minutes. Dig!!!

 

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GHETTO WAYS – st [2004]

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Garage punk band from Brooklyn, NY, influenced by The Sonics, Stooges, MC5, New York Dolls, delivers frantic soulful rock’n’roll in the vein of The Gories, Oblivians, BellRays or The Dirtbombs. This is their debut slab. Taste the Ghetto Luv, Dig !!!

”For the dirty boys in the parking lot! This is no new sympathy records girlie cover music, this is pure ghetto trash! Wrecked rock ‘n’ roll that will win your cheap scenester soul in no time.”

”More mean rhythm, backbeat and style than a whole motorcycle gang, it’s been described as a kind of “DIRTBOMBS gone wild“ or “beer soaked inspired australian rock blasts inflected with dirty Detroit soul.“

“The three-piece half woman/half devil falls over the fourth dimension, like an English band from the 70s messing around with the Blues Explosion and MC5.” —ROLLING STONE (FRANCE)

 

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“This band is a veritable army of rock’n roll ninja-drinking brown lickah, telling you the whole time that you don’t party nearly enough.” —HORIZONTAL ACTION (USA)

“CRAZY! Most-wild, mighty-swingin’ fuxx-guit-driven 3-piece blastin’ out a Crime-meets-Oblivians scree!” —Tim Warren, CRYPT RECORDS (USA)

“If the Bellrays are the female-fronted answer to the MC5, then think of the GHETTO WAYS as the Stooges. Jenna delivers the perfect mix of sex and soul…” —CARBON 14 (USA)”

“60s soul-encrusted Stoogeisms.” —RAZORCAKE (USA)”

 

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THE BLACK AND WHITES – st [2008. Power Pop/Punk]

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The Black And Whites were created as a home recording project by Talbot Adams in New Orleans, LA in the late 1990’s. The project flourished as a band in Oxford, MS in the Mid 2000’s. They play Ramones/Devil Dogs, 70s/90s influenced garage-pop-punk with passion and energy. After three excellent 45s they released their sole Lp on Douchemaster Records. Fun tunes ’bout good girls, bad girls, multiple girls, bad expectations, broken hearts… Some said it was one of the best record to come out in 2008. Here you got it + 4 bonus singles trax. In Black & White, Dig!!!

 

 

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THE RAMBLERS – Ramblin’ Back To The Grave [1987. Killer 60’s Garage Revival !!!]

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”Oh bliss! Bliss and heaven! Oh, it was gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh. It was like a bird of rarest-spun heaven metal or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now. As I slooshied, I knew such lovely pictures!”

Listen up folks and listen well ! This here is a garage rock revival HIT record done by a band from Orange, France and it’s their sole lp. Why they are not better known or should I ask why they are criminally unknown is beyond me. This slab rocks from start to finish with unstoppable attack of organ ‘n’ fuzz drivin’ garage beat that will have ya on yer knees beggin’ for mo’. Killer stuff all over the place with cool covers of Velvet Underground ”White Light/White Heat”, 13th Floor Elevators ”Fire Engine”, and great originals. This is top 60’s garage revival record up there with the best of genre. Don’t miss it! Let’s get ready to ramble!!!

[Special thanx to my friend Fred from France for this extreme pleasure]

 

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