Picked up this Norton Records LP from Deep Thoughts on Memorial Day and sadly I haven’t played it as much as a guy like me should. Encompassing the first four years of The Sonics in chronological order from A1 ’61 home recordings to B9 ’64 home recordings and some dance and teen club performances sprinkled in, Savage Young Sonics sounds like a band both comfortable dabbling in instrumental surf and gradually more eager to rock ‘n roll. Apparently they were able to pack in hundreds of adolescents from all over Tacoma. Maybe a good chunk of older folks too: at the drop of the needle my gram started doing the jitterbug, all while smiling widely throughout the first coupla numbers. She wonders out loud when this music from. 1961 I say. “Back in your day?” Yeah! She’s endured louder, naughtier, more primal records (courtesy of my outdoor record player) so comparatively speaking this one is not nearly as rough as the back cover notes suggest. She’s in shock when Andy from Side B calls for people to come to see them at the Medford Armory. Nat that Medford, but hey what a fun time that must have been. The Sonics influence ain’t a joke, though; the crazed spirit of the ’90s and ’00s ‘garage’ groups can be traced to Sonics mania pre- The Witch. A saucy bunch taking things up a dozen notches. Thank the SAX, thank the ORGAN.
Remember when you first heard of Bloodshot Bill. You went to his website and saw that damn counter at the bottom of the page saying he wouldn’t be back in US of A for another 669 days or something like that. You thought, “Damn, it’s going to be a long while ’til I see this dude live.” Well, 669 turned into 400 turned into 100 and is now sitting at 21. Yup, after five long years, Bill will return to America. First for the special Norton Records 25th Anniversary show in NYC on November 13 and then for a three week tour accompanied by King Khan via Tandoori Knights. Find the dates HERE and watch a video below.
From Norton’s Website: Ten spectacular new recordings featuring members of the Black Lips, Gentleman Jesse and his Men and the Carbonas! Nine originals plus an amazing Sanford Clark cover! Pretty Boy / You Were With Him / His Girl / We Are Only Gonna Die / Jesus Didn’t Try Hard Enough To Save My Soul / Cry Of The Castrati / O So Far Away / I Wanna Join The James Gang / Still As The Night / Don’t Get Married
Comments: About time for a review of this record, which is surely something else. The story is warm one: rockabilly Indo-Canadian Bloodshot Bill gets together with fellow Indo-Canadian, garage/punk/soul master Arish King Khan and they decide to make a record. They could’ve stuck to a traditional script that utilized the best of both worlds as Bill and multi-talented kingpin Mark Sultan did when they got together and recorded The Ding-Dongs. Curry Up sounds like a natural export of Hindustan, at least as soon as the guitar begins on “Pretty Please”. Bill takes the lead vocals on pretty much all of the tracks, which kind of makes this sound pretty Bloodshot Bill-esque. Bill’s vocal flexibility and plethora of musical skill means that he can pull something like this off pretty well. King is heard sparsely on this record, which is disappointing as a bigger King fan. These songs are quite humorous, making me think I probably shouldn’t take this record too seriously! As a cheesy one-off, it is what it is. At the apex of funniness is probably “Into Her Arms,” a tale of falling into the octo-arms of some nice Indian lady. What’s the purpose of the eight arms? Well, “one to whore me, one to score me, two to spank me, four to thank me!”
Band: The Ding-Dongs (Mark Sultan & Bloodshot Bill) Release: 5/2010 Label: Norton
1. “Ding-Dong Party” – B+ 2. “Don’t Ring, Come On In” – A-
3. “Until I Die” – B+ 4. “Come On Lil Dolly” – B+ 5. “She’s A Tiger” – B+ 6. “Woman Cops” – A–
7. “Knock Me Down” – B 8. “You Better Hide” – A- 9. “Military Mama” – C+ 10. “Worried Man” – B- 11. “What’s That Sound” – A 12. “Crazy Dreams” – B
13. “Last Laugh” – B
Comments: BYODD. Bring your own ding-dong. That seems like the most logical thing to do at a “Ding Dong Party.” Bloodshot and Mark sing with such conviction that I almost forgot that the concept of such a song is total cheese. The same goes for pretty much all the tracks on this record. As you’d probably guess (judging by the ghost of Mark Sultan and Bloodshot Bill past), this is textbook Rockabilly For Dummies or Primitive Rock and Roll for Junkies. “Woman Cops” stuck in my head since I heard it first a few months ago. Walking down the street or sitting down reading a book, the words “Woman Cops, when you love to beat me” suddenly came to me. It’s such a quick song that I got a feeling of, wait a second, I don’t remember it being THIS short! Oh well! Good track. As I mentioned when I reviewed Waylon Thornton’s latest offering…there is only so much you can do within this kind of framework without really changing things up. True, a lot of these songs are just undifferentiated old school party numbers. Unless, you are listening with absolute acuity, it’s hard to argue otherwise. “What’s That Sound” is more gritty and resolute, more instantly catchy than any other track on here. To answer the song title’s question…I’ll guess pee pee. All right, so let’s get something clear: if you are a die-hard Bloodshot Bill fan, you’ll be loving this. If you are a die-hard Mark Sultan fan, but only like BB marginally (who am I talking about?), you’ll be liking this. If you don’t like anything either of the two have put out (in their respective bands), shit, you are out of luck. BUT WAIT…if I like the King Khan and BBQ Show, will I like this? Not as much as you probably wanted to. This is like Hunts Ketchup vs. Heinz Ketchup. Hunts just doesn’t match up.
New Split 7″ The world’s spiciest duo, King Khan and Bloodshot Bill offer a currified romper of Gomper (clocking in at 5:09 – the exact time of the Stones version!) on this New Dehli platter! All they ask in return is that you please remove your shoes. Turn it over and dig Scotland’s least likely hit makers as they blaze through everyone’s favorite Nanker Phelge floor packer!