Wednesday, October 30, 2013

ROKY ERICKSON-THE EVILLER ONE Redux: AN ALTERNATE CLASSIC!







The material recorded by ROKY ERICKSON and the ALIENS with ex CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL bassist Stu Cook in the producer spot still commands respect more than 30 years later. Initially spread out over two lps but now compiled into the 15 song EVIL ONE cd, the otherworldly spell of this music still holds demonic sway-- in its way, as important as his legendary previous work with Psychedelic/Garage titans the 13TH FLOOR ELEVATORS. The focus of the terror themed compositions married to the unique and powerful arrangements of the ALIENS resulted in a no-longer-debatable classic. With each passing year its 'cult' status appeal expands into a wider and wider audience of appreciative fanatics.

So why mess with a good thing? Well, truth is, most of THE EVIL ONE's tracks have made impressive, sometimes superior, appearances elsewhere in the dense catalogue of ERICKSON's erratic recording career. Sometimes different versions tried with the ALIENS, sometimes with other backing bands such as the EXPLOSIVES, sometimes live, sometimes solo attempts. With so much of this amazing material available online, it seemed natural to offer up an 'alternate' EVIL ONE. Many of these other options are likely to thrill both the novice ROKY dabbler as well as the longtime devotee-- there are some truly wild performances here, and not all of them are well known.


The set is programmed to match the running order of the EVIL ONE cd, so kick back, open up your mind, and click your fingers applauding as you press PLAY.





1. TWO HEADED DOG
     Arguably the most perfect version of this classic was concocted for the slightly earlier Sponge EP, also recorded with the ALIENS.

TWO HEADED DOG





2. I THINK OF DEMONS
     Rarely attempted live until ROKY's 'comeback,' here is an impressive take with the NOMADS backing him in 2008 in front of an awesomely receptive audience,

I THINK UP DEMONS





3. CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN
      An unforgettable segment of the 1980 documentary MEETING WITH AN ALIEN featured ROKY performing this favorite in a windy graveyard. Begins with an amusing interview snippet and ends with the ol' devil horns.

CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN





4. THE WIND AND MORE
     This energetic performance with the EXPLOSIVES features some maniacal adlibbing from ERICKSON. This is matched with some more horror themed live footage from MEETING WITH AN ALIEN.

THE WIND AND MORE






5. DON'T SHAKE ME LUCIFER
     An enticing performance with the EXPLOSIVES features a tough, lean arrangement and is notably adorned by a rarely heard extra verse-- which surprisingly references his earlier band.

DON'T SHAKE ME LUCIFER


>


 6. BLOODY HAMMER
      A great acoustic version from the uncommon LOVE TO SEE YOU BLEED cd, with an extra verse of lyrics!

BLOODY HAMMER






7. STAND FOR THE FIRE DEMON
     This highlight from the EXPLOSIVES backed CASTING THE RUNES is a performance which inspired ROKY to impressive passages of demented power.

STAND FOR THE FIRE DEMON





8. CLICK YOUR FINGERS APPLAUDING THE PLAY
      Though effective in its own right, the EVIL ONE attempt of this gem just can't match the relentlessly bashing throb of the earlier SPONGE ep take.

CLICK YOUR FINGERS APPLAUDING THE PLAY






9. IF YOU HAVE GHOSTS
     An EVIL ONE rarity for certain: not only untopped, but virtually unattempted elsewhere in any recorded form by ERICKSON. Suppose the only way to achieve 'EVILLER' in this instance is to throw in imagery from the 1962 cult horror film CARNIVAL OF SOULS. (This vid begins with a brief snippet of WHITE FACES. Don't worry. That's coming.)

IF YOU HAVE GHOSTS





10. I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE
     Another strong EXPLOSIVES live cut.

I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE





11. NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE
     This startlingly devilish highlight from GREMLINS HAVE PICTURES captures what may be ERICKSON's finest moment with the EXPLOSIVES.

NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE





12. IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS
      This thrilling alternate EVIL ONE take is powered by demonstrably more frenetic drumwork, and other impressive performance touches from the ALIENS.

IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS





13. MINE MINE MIND
     Another superior SPONGE ep meditation.

MINE MINE MIND





14. SPUTNIK
      Leading off with a chorus instead of a verse, this dazzling EVIL ONE alternate take more than holds its own against the finally utilized version.

SPUTNIK: ALIEN I CREATOR





15. WHITE FACES
     The EVILLER ONE proper closes with one of this exercise's most amazing finds: an undeniably superior EVIL ONE take with an incredibly open throttle, full on freakout vocal explosion from ROKY. MUST be heard to be believed.

WHITE FACES










We'll wrap things up here with a few extra tastes of other versions which just fell short of the cut. There were only a few of my first choices not available online-- the Sympathy for the Record Industry live RESURRECTIONISTS cd BEAUTY AND THE BEAST has a great DON'T SHAKE ME LUCIFER, and that release's TWO HEADED DOG and COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS surely would have been considered. The LIVE IN DALLAS release with the NERVEBREAKERS features a particularly strong THE WIND AND MORE. Otherwise, the remaining ideal options were all findable. So were these appealing also rans.


16. TWO HEADED DOG
     Surely the toughest decision of this program was between the SPONGE ep take of TWO HEADED DOG and this DOUG SAHM produced original, which appeared on a 45 on the MARS label. Many prefer the nearly unhinged clamour of this version, but the devastating guitar work on the SPONGE ep tipped the scales in that direction.

TWO HEADED DOG





17. CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN
     The two cd collection THE EVIL ONE (PLUS ONE) reveals this tantalizing outtake with the ALIENS. Incomplete, but with far more dialogue from the film quoted.

CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN





18.NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE
      Another brief EVIL ONE alternate from the same release.

NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE





19. IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS
     Another great EXPLOSIVES live track from GREMLINS HAVE PICTURES. Not as good as the RESURRECTIONISTS, but available.

IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS





20. MINE MINE MIND
      A dark, moody solo performance.

MINE MINE MIND





21. BLOODY HAMMER
     This slightly varispeeded rough mix of the EVIL ONE version features not only more dominant guitars, but also continues well past the expected fadeout point to the absolute conclusion.


BLOODY HAMMER






22. TWO HEADED DOG
     In conclusion, one more highly obscure demo of TWO HEADED DOG.

TWO HEADED DOG









Thanx to the YOUTUBE posters of these precious materials.



For more great ROKY artifacts, please visit this fanpage:

**************************************

https://www.facebook.com/devilsinfintychildren

**************************************



Hail the party.




Monday, September 23, 2013

CHOP HER UP AND I DON'T CARE Redux: TOP 10 RAMONES MOVIE MASHUPS




For more art by SAMY THE KAY click links here or at the end! SAMY THE KAY--ILLUSTRATIONS OF SOUND & SAMY THE KAY--CARTOONIST   Thanks Samy!





The RAMONES loved watching movies. Not only does JOHNNY list his favorite flicks by genre in his autobiography, he also notes his favorite film books and Top Ten ELVIS pictures-- which puts him safely beyond the pale into the orbit of genuine fanatic. The cinema was a significant component of their underlying trash aesthetic, and unsurprisingly they frequently referenced works they admired into their lyrics. In the MTV age their promo clips were unmistakably touched by the flavour of their moviegoing obsessions, with distinct nods in style and clearcut homage details.

In the digital internet age this predictably led to the next step of the public marrying their favourite tracks to homemade video mashups utilizing famous movies. The visual and conceptual strengths of the songs are frequently merged onto the familiar film footage with startling success-- that most of the movies employed fall directly from the group's most beloved realms (cult flicks and b-grade horror flicks) helps considerably. Still, a few curveballs pan out exceedingly well, as our sampling below will bear out...




1. IGNORANCE IS BLISS
     The apocalyptic, paranoid, late period thrasher is effectively applied to JOHN CARPENTER's dystopian premonition THEY LIVE.

IGNORANCE IS BLISS






2. I WANNA BE SEDATED
     The brilliant clip combining WE'RE A HAPPY FAMILY with THE SHINING has unfortunately been removed from youtube, but we can still get an impressive dose of KUBRICK insanity with this surprisingly effective utilization of another of his classics, DR. STRANGELOVE (OR: HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE BOMB).

I WANNA BE SEDATED






3. PINHEAD
     Inevitably, PINHEAD is brought back full circle to the creepy cult classic that inspired it, on top of the bizarre curiosity's most unforgettable sequence, no less. Gooble Gobble!!

PINHEAD






4. BEAT ON THE BRAT
     This stunner fuses the anti-rugrat anthem to a trio of violent bat attacks: Two from the gangster genre (THE UNTOUCHABLES & A BRONX TALE), but then an amazing segue into the Baseball Furies battle from the New York gang thriller THE WARRIORS.

BEAT ON THE BRAT






5. CHAINSAW
     Of course who couldn't see this one coming from a mile away, but it's genuinely impressive how well it captures the menace of TOBE HOOPER's maniacal bedrock effort in such a short stretch of time.

CHAINSAW






6. THE CRUSHER
     Now HERE's one that would have been tough to foresee--DEEDEE's wrestling ode plopped on top of SLY STALLONE's absurd Cold War era ROCKY sequel! Hilarious.

THE CRUSHER






7. OUTSIDER
     A tad obvious, but quite well done. Does this movie version of the S.E. HINTON juvie standby have ANY male fans??

OUTSIDER






8. COMMANDO
     I guess it would have been hard to not see this one coming.

COMMANDO






9. PET SEMATARY
     Practically unavoidable, but it is rather puzzling how little of this picture's disturbing footage made it into the official video. That oversight is finally rectified here- and the straight match to the theatrical trailer works eerily well.

PET SEMATARY






10. MERRY XMAS (I DON'T WANNA FIGHT TONIGHT)
     One of the program's most brilliant ideas, this cautionary Yuletide plea for calm is commingled with a dazzling montage of Doomed Couples from the Cinema (mostly drawn from the horror domain). A few in here escape my familiarity-- feel free to message me a full list if you can identify them all!

MERRY XMAS (I DON'T WANNA FIGHT TONIGHT)










BONUS!!
    One more goodie for you. There's only a few moments of the WWII era drama TOMORROW THE WORLD online currently, but likelihood points to this being a probable inspiration for DEEDEE's trademark masterpiece TODAY YOUR LOVE, TOMORROW THE WORLD. (Certainly the German-raised bass player would have found resonance in the potboiler's melodramatic portrayal of an American family struggling to cope with the foreign houseguest youth hiding an explosive, secret past.) Hopefully someone uploads the entire feature soon...

TOMORROW THE WORLD








2014 UPDATE: FULL MOVIE NOW UP! Sound is a bit duff.

TOMORROW THE WORLD 1944








HEY!  HO! You! The amazing illustration leading off this piece was drawn by the supremely talented SAMY THE KAY, whose supercool work often references badass musicians (including, often THE RAMONES). Follow these links to more of his superb concoctions. Thank you for granting me permission, Samy!


TUMBLR! --->> SAMY THE KAY--ILLUSTRATIONS OF SOUND

FACEBOOKK! --->> SAMY THE KAY--ILLUSTRATOR/CARTOONIST







And of course don't forget to check out my daily track by track RAMONES career overview blog at

RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE

Links to follow on Tumblr and Facebook can also be found there.










Wednesday, August 21, 2013

ROKY ERICKSON-THE EVILLER ONE: AN ALTERNATE CLASSIC!






---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

THIS PAGE HAS BEEN UPDATED! Click here to jump to the fresh link.

EVILLER ONE REDUX

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The material recorded by ROKY ERICKSON and the ALIENS with ex CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL bassist Stu Cook in the producer spot still commands respect more than 30 years later. Initially spread out over two lps but now compiled into the 15 song EVIL ONE cd, the otherworldly spell of this music still holds demonic sway-- in its way, as important as his legendary previous work with Psychedelic/Garage titans the 13TH FLOOR ELEVATORS. The focus of the terror themed compositions married to the unique and powerful arrangements of the ALIENS resulted in a no-longer-debatable classic. With each passing year its 'cult' status appeal expands into a wider and wider audience of appreciative fanatics.

So why mess with a good thing? Well, truth is, most of THE EVIL ONE's tracks have made impressive, sometimes superior, appearances elsewhere in the dense catalogue of ERICKSON's erratic recording career. Sometimes different versions tried with the ALIENS, sometimes with other backing bands such as the EXPLOSIVES, sometimes live, sometimes solo attempts. With so much of this amazing material available online, it seemed natural to offer up an 'alternate' EVIL ONE. Many of these other options are likely to thrill both the novice ROKY dabbler as well as the longtime devotee-- there are some truly wild performances here, and not all of them are well known.


The set is programmed to match the running order of the EVIL ONE cd, so kick back, open up your mind, and click your fingers applauding as you press PLAY.





1. TWO HEADED DOG
     Arguably the most perfect version of this classic was concocted for the slightly earlier Sponge EP, also recorded with the ALIENS.

TWO HEADED DOG





2. I THINK OF DEMONS
     There actually aren't a lot of other versions of this sturdy scarifier, so we'll make do with a strong live take with THE EXPLOSIVES, recorded on Halloween and leaning more towards the 'UP' instead of the 'OF' of the title.

I THINK UP DEMONS





3. CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN
      An unforgettable segment of the 1980 documentary MEETING WITH AN ALIEN featured ROKY performing this favorite in a windy graveyard. Begins with an amusing interview snippet and ends with the ol' devil horns.

CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN





4. THE WIND AND MORE
     This energetic performance with the EXPLOSIVES features some maniacal adlibbing from ERICKSON.

THE WIND AND MORE





5. DON'T SHAKE ME LUCIFER
     Another tidbit from the Halloween show features a tough, lean arrangement and is notably adorned by a rarely heard extra verse-- which surprisingly references his earlier band.

DON'T SHAKE ME LUCIFER





 6. BLOODY HAMMER
      This slightly varispeeded rough mix of the EVIL ONE version features not only more dominant guitars, but also continues well past the expected fadeout point to the absolute conclusion.

BLOODY HAMMER





7. STAND FOR THE FIRE DEMON
     This highlight from the EXPLOSIVES backed CASTING THE RUNES is a performance which inspired ROKY to impressive passages of demented power.

STAND FOR THE FIRE DEMON





8. CLICK YOUR FINGERS APPLAUDING THE PLAY
      Though effective in its own right, the EVIL ONE attempt of this gem just can't match the relentlessly bashing throb of the earlier SPONGE ep take.

CLICK YOUR FINGERS APPLAUDING THE PLAY






9. IF YOU HAVE GHOSTS
     An EVIL ONE rarity for certain: not only untopped, but virtually unattempted elsewhere in any recorded form by ERICKSON. Suppose the only way to achieve 'EVILLER' in this instance is to throw in imagery from the 1962 cult horror film CARNIVAL OF SOULS. (This vid begins with a brief snippet of WHITE FACES. Don't worry. That's coming.)

IF YOU HAVE GHOSTS





10. I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE
     Another strong EXPLOSIVES live cut.

I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE





11. NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE
     This startlingly devilish highlight from GREMLINS HAVE PICTURES captures what may be ERICKSON's finest moment with the EXPLOSIVES.

NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE





12. IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS
      This thrilling alternate EVIL ONE take is powered by demonstrably more frenetic drumwork, and other impressive performance touches from the ALIENS.

IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS





13. MINE MINE MIND
     Another superior SPONGE ep meditation.

MINE MINE MIND





14. SPUTNIK
      Leading off with a chorus instead of a verse, this dazzling EVIL ONE alternate take more than holds its own against the finally utilized version.

SPUTNIK: ALIEN I CREATOR





15. WHITE FACES
     The EVILLER ONE proper closes with one of this exercise's most amazing finds: an undeniably superior EVIL ONE take with an incredibly open throttle, full on freakout vocal explosion from ROKY. MUST be heard to be believed.

WHITE FACES










We'll wrap things up here with a few extra tastes of other versions which just fell short of the cut. There were only a few of my first choices not available online-- the Sympathy for the Record Industry live RESURRECTIONISTS cd BEAUTY AND THE BEAST has a great DON'T SHAKE ME LUCIFER, and that release's TWO HEADED DOG and COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS surely would have been considered. The LIVE IN DALLAS release with the NERVEBREAKERS features a particularly strong THE WIND AND MORE. Also, the odd import compilation LOVE TO SEE YOU BLEED has a potent acoustic demo of BLOODY HAMMER. Otherwise, the remaining ideal options were all findable. So were these appealing also rans.


16. TWO HEADED DOG
     Surely the toughest decision of this program was between the SPONGE ep take of TWO HEADED DOG and this DOUG SAHM produced original, which appeared on a 45 on the MARS label. Many prefer the nearly unhinged clamour of this version, but the devastating guitar work on the SPONGE ep tipped the scales in that direction.

TWO HEADED DOG





17. CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN
     The two cd collection THE EVIL ONE (PLUS ONE) reveals this tantalizing outtake with the ALIENS. Incomplete, but with far more dialogue from the film quoted.

CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN





18.NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE
      Another brief EVIL ONE alternate from the same release.

NIGHT OF THE VAMPIRE





19. IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS
     Another great EXPLOSIVES live track from GREMLINS HAVE PICTURES. Not as good as the RESURRECTIONISTS, but available.

IT'S A COLD NIGHT FOR ALLIGATORS





20. MINE MINE MIND
      A dark, moody solo performance.

MINE MINE MIND





21. TWO HEADED DOG
     In conclusion, one more highly obscure demo of TWO HEADED DOG.

TWO HEADED DOG









Thanx to the YOUTUBE posters of these precious materials.



For more great ROKY artifacts, please visit this fanpage:

**************************************

https://www.facebook.com/devilsinfintychildren

**************************************



Hail the party.




Monday, August 12, 2013

RAMONES CARTOONS!! REDUX







ENJOY, kiddies!  And don't forget to check out my daily track by track RAMONES career overview at:

************************************************************

RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE: An Overview

************************************************************



I DON'T WANNA GO DOWN TO THE BASEMENT Demo







I DON'T WANNA GO DOWN TO THE BASEMENT







LISTEN TO MY HEART








COMMANDO








CHAINSAW








JUDY IS A PUNK








DEEDEE








JOHNNY








SPIDER MAN








HAPPY BIRTHDAY








I DON'T WANT TO GROW UP








WE'RE A HAPPY FAMILY







I DON'T WANNA WALK AROUND WITH YOU








ROCK 'N' ROLL HIGH SCHOOL















Thanx to the animators and posters of these great clips, especially stelos486!! Great work. No ownership implied or suggested.

Ramones poster by HUNT EMERSON.





Wednesday, July 3, 2013

READ YOUR LINE SO CLEVERLY: Top 10 ELVIS Flick SLUMMERS!!





A career in films isn't easy. Even if by some more-farfetched-than-a-lottery-jackpot possibility one achieves any level of demonstrable success and accolades, an actor (or director, etc) must adopt an unblinking flexibility towards project quality if a steady stream of work is to be maintained. Fleeting smash hit popularity, or winning an Oscar or somesuch, offers no guarantee of automatic new opportunities. Only major, massive stars can exercise true aesthetic veto power over which proposed future ventures they might opt to sign on for. Even if you're the best, sometimes there are still bills that need to be paid, and sometimes you enter upon enterprises somewhat beneath your abilities. Like, say for instance, ELVIS movies.

It is not the aim here to be critical of those on the first upward slope of their professional arc (MARTIN SCORSESE cutting his teeth editing ELVIS ON TOUR jumps to mind). Nor are we here to spotlight the journeyman efforts of capable 'B' or 'C' listers such as the likable L.Q. JONES or the surprisingly grating SHELLEY FABARES (both of whom astonishingly managed THREE 'E' film appearances.) The sublime succumbing to schlock is our present focus, and (especially) once they hit their post-army-stint pace, PRESLEY's movies were the very embodiment of schlock. They were churned out thrice a year, rehashing similar plots and rehiring the same second rate TV hacks behind and in front of the camera film after film. Most of his cinema highlights occurred in the initial mid to late fifties burst of activity, but in the sixties simple competence was rarely achieved-- despite the occasional (and often embarrassing) utilization of top notch craftsmen. And it is these startling appearances in ELVIS' celluloid ouevre by true, established Hollywood talent to which this list is dedicated.





1.) MICHAEL CURTIZ "King Creole"
     Let's just get this anomaly out of the way. A genuinely GREAT movie, KING CREOLE is one of the only instances where an injection of skilled studio hands actually elevated an 'E' project, on the whole, to substantial heights. (Notably, but unsurprisingly, this occured pre-army.) At the director's helm for what ended up being one of his final films, CURTIZ drew upon a lifetime of experience for his ELVIS assignment. The multiple Oscar winning genius behind such varied classics as CASABLANCA, YANKEE DOODLE DANDY, MILDRED PIERCE and THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD brought a class and compositional eye to the table, the likes of which would never be seen in a PRESLEY film ever again. Also overachieving above and beyond the call of duty were cast members WALTER MATTHAU, a young VIC MORROW, and a pre-Morticia CAROLYN JONES.






2.) BARBARA STANWYCK "Roustabout"
      The four time Academy award nominee of DOUBLE INDEMNITY and other classics brought a slight spunk to a workmanlike walk through of her role here as a matronly carnival owner. Already deep into a transition to television, she is tangibly formularizing a persona which will soon find full flower on THE BIG VALLEY. Veteran character actor LEIF ERICKSON seems a bit more in his element.







 3.) GARY MERRILL "Clambake"
      After unforgettably acting alongside his future wife BETTE DAVIS in the top rank classic ALL ABOUT EVE, there was probably really only room for downward mobility. However, MERRILL's surprising supporting role in this late PRESLEY potboiler is nearly impossible for a fan of his early work to acclimate to. One decade you're sharing the screen with GEORGE SANDERS, another decade, with WILL HUTCHINS and a bunch of gogo dancers from the MONKEES. That's GARY on the right.
    






4.) ANGELA LANSBURY "Blue Hawaii"
     Academy award nominee for GASLIGHT and THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY, this English/Irish actress was on the way to one of her most chilling roles as the merciless political matriarch in THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE when she paused for this misstep as ELVIS' southern mother, one of the most awkward performances in ANY PRESLEY film--which is saying something. Unfazed, the actress found future television fame awaiting her on MURDER SHE WROTE. Ummm, what the hell is up with that hug, MOM?






5.) GIG YOUNG "Kid Galahad"
     Halfway between Best Supporting Oscar nominations (he eventually won for THEY SHOOT HORSES DON'T THEY) this screen veteran ranked barely noticeable in this bland ring drama. Some might suggest that the nod here should go to co-star CHARLES BRONSON, but although his continual struggle to not seem the tougher presence alongside the weak PRESLEY is amusing, his career feels a little too comfortable in the exploitative 'B' realm for this appearance to truly constitute 'slumming.' The overall arc must have been plain even to ELVIS--less than a decade after being directed by the great MICHAEL CURTIZ, here was the King stumbling through a hackneyed remake of one the recently deceased master's early classics.






6.) DON SIEGEL "Flaming Star"
     The director of the respected paranoid sci-fi parable INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS was already an experienced hand at crime drama and westerns by the mid sixties, but apparently his work at the helm of the FABIAN 'Love Me Tender' copycat film HOUND DOG MAN is what clinched SIEGEL for this latest PRESLEY shoot 'em up. Interestingly, filming had already begun with BARBARA STEELE in BARBARA EDEN's role, but she was replaced due to her inexperience, foreign accent, brunette hairdo, and height. Although SIEGEL eventually won fame later with countless CLINT EASTWOOD collaborations, this film remains no better than a bit above passable. The lobby poster reproduced below apparently features ELVIS after the Charles Atlas bodybuilding program.
     





7.) ELSA LANCHESTER "Easy Come, Easy Go"
     The striking English actress best known as the BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN and longtime real life bride of the brilliant CHARLES LAUGHTON was on a Disney generated comeback of sorts when she detoured on to this dismal PRESLEY vehicle. She was offered sizable opportunity to degrade herself with a featured musical number (one of very few ELVIS costars allowed to do so) and the execrable results below offer grim proof that said opportunity was seized heartily.







8.) HARRY MORGAN/JOHN IRELAND/PAUL LUKAS (tie)
     Here's a trio of talented character actors all being wasted in low grade PRESLEY drivel. HARRY MORGAN had already had supporting roles in durable perennials such as INHERIT THE WIND and HIGH NOON before taking on the role of ELVIS's little pianist in the unbearable FRANKIE AND JOHNNY. He later achieved TV notoriety on DRAGNET and MASH. Oscar winner PAUL LUKAS was well known for roles in creepy films such as THE LADY VANISHES and 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA before stooping to the wretched FUN IN ACAPULCO. Dependable JOHN IRELAND was a familiar face in classic westerns and had already won an Oscar for ALL THE KING'S MEN before spinning his wheels in the hopeless PRESLEY melodrama WILD IN THE COUNTRY. Speaking of WILD IN THE COUNTRY...






9.) CLIFFORD ODETS 'Wild in the Country"
     The famed left wing playwright had already landed on his feet as a Hollywood script doctor before being called to testify on his Communist leanings before HUAC, pretty much falling in line with ELIA KAZAN-- widely regarded as the McCarthy era's most famous cooperative witness. Despite his tarnished reputation, the screenplay for THE SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS brought him just that. He was then inexplicably hired to adapt the J.R. Salamanca novel "Lilith" as an upcoming ELVIS vehicle, and the morbidly overdramatic result WILD IN THE COUNTRY remains one of PRESLEY's most wrongheaded misfires.






10.) BURGESS MEREDITH "Stay Away Joe"
     One of America's most recognizable thespians, BURGESS MEREDITH enjoyed work in stage and film so prolific that sometimes it almost seemed as if when he took on a truly low grade role, he would revel in relishing the opportunity to exploit the ludicrous lunacies of the assignment. Although surely cathartic and fun, this led to numerous career embarrassments. Surely few are as imbecilic as the 'comic' turn he takes playing a Native American elder in the rock bottom PRESLEY atrocity STAY AWAY JOE.








 HONOURABLE MENTION:
     It just wouldn't seem right to not mention the TROUBLE WITH GIRLS cameos by VINCENT PRICE and JOHN CARRADINE. Although brief--and despite the fact that these are two actors scarcely known to have refused ANY role-- they prove to be a breath of fresh air in a film that is close to intolerable. Rarely has such a half hearted attempt at slumming been such a welcome relief.






Picture credits:

http://matthau.com/

http://www.elvisblog.net

www.elvis.com.au





Saturday, March 16, 2013

RAMONES CARTOONS!!

RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE: An Overview will be taking a short break as my band THE HICKOIDS wraps up SXSW in Austin & goes on a short European tour with THE GRANNIES from San Francisco. Til then, here's Saturday Morning fare to keep you kiddies occupied over your sugarcoated breakfast cereal.


I DON'T WANNA GO DOWN TO THE BASEMENT




LISTEN TO MY HEART




COMMANDO




CHAINSAW





JUDY IS A PUNK




DEEDEE




JOHNNY




SPIDER MAN





HAPPY BIRTHDAY




 I DON'T WANT TO GROW UP





Thanx to the animators and posters of these great clips, especially stelos486!! Great work. No ownership implied or suggested.



Sunday, March 10, 2013

RAMONES' IT'S ALIVE--FUELED BY ELTON JOHN??!! w/ EXTRA CLIPS!








RAMONES-- IT'S ALIVE: FUELED BY ELTON JOHN???!!


IT’S ALIVE by THE RAMONES. My favorite band. My favorite record. Their best ever performance. Much to my surprise, we might have ELTON JOHN to thank in part. We’ll let Ramones producer ED STASIUM take it from here…

“I recorded six or seven gigs but we chose the Rainbow show because it was a great gig all around….When they did the It’s Alive recording at the Rainbow Theater in London on New Year’s Eve in ‘77, Elton john came to the party dressed all crazed out in his gay Nazi biker drag uniform. He had a German eagle SS pendant and a pound of cocaine in his hip pocket and was giving everybody bumps of coke from this thing he had around his neck. He actually held the thing as I snorted it….I thought ‘Holy Toledo, I’m snorting cocaine with Elton John!’”
—-excerpt from MONTE MELNICK’s book ON THE ROAD WITH THE RAMONES. It is wonderful. Go buy ten copies. Photos by DANNY FIELDS.



POSTSCRIPT:
One of the things that made the DVD release of IT'S ALIVE so enthralling was that it was the final culmination of an excruciatingly drawn out tease. Brief clips from the London show had trickled out on various RAMONES video releases over the years, and anticipation built to a fever as work on the IT'S ALIVE dvd commenced and was completed.

Just one problem- IT'S ALIVE omitted the tracks which had previously appeared! I've gathered them up here for convenience. Obviously the quality is not up to the stunning restoration apparent on the dvd, but they are thrilling nonetheless,  Enjoy!


ROCKAWAY BEACH








SHEENA IS A PUNK ROCKER







ALSO!

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RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE


Sunday, March 3, 2013

RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE






RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE

My new daily track by track blog RAMONES career overview.

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RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE




Friday, February 1, 2013

THE RAMONES' OTHER DEBUT ALBUM

The Brothers are absolutely my favorite band, and I often refer to the first album as THE 14 COMMANDMENTS. The nature of its odd (practically ANTI-) production has become a central part of the mystique- thin, dry, trebly, practically no outside instrument embellishment or solos, brutal stereo separation of the bass & guitar, little 'protection' for Joey's (and others') vokes. Its primitivism is often cited as an ideal match to the band's aesthetic approach.

In fact even the meager cost of recording (six grand or so) is often touted as evidence of their simple precision. (I know, doesn't seem too meager to me either. They mean meager compared to the cost of  Fleetwood Mac producing TUSK.)

These notions, however, are obliterated upon hearing the cheap demos recorded by manager Marty Thau & the band in 1975. Crunchy and charged, these recordings make the six grand spent on THE RAMONES seem like a dubious extravagance, and in retrospect later several members noted the earlier tries' superior sound and feel to the subsequent 'real' recordings. A majority of the debut record's tracks were tried out, as well as a few that made it to LEAVE HOME (and even LATER!) and a couple of awesome tunes which went unreleased for years.

With most of these tracks so readily available via youtubin' I thought it might be fun to assemble them here, duplicating the original track order as closely as possible. The crucial, iconic openers weren't attempted (Blitzkrieg Bop & Beat on the Brat), but otherwise much of the flow has been maintained. Threw on some other extras at the end too. ENJOY!



1. I DON'T WANNA BE LEARNED/ I DON'T WANNA BE TAMED--A good place to start, a song which distills their primitive power down to it's purest essence. Until DURANGO 95 came along, much later, that is.






2. I DON'T CARE--The only one of these demos held back for ROCKET TO RUSSIA, their 3rd. Many of these tracks feature far more more relaxed and expressive vocals from Joey, and this is a good example.






3. JUDY IS A PUNK--The heavier, but simultaneously somehow more bubblegummy sound they would later overtly attempt on their 2nd LEAVE HOME is evident all over these tracks.





4. I WANNA BE YOUR BOYFRIEND--They give it a go in C before trying it in D (see 16) and then ending up in E on the record. Shoulda left it where it was.





5.CHAINSAW--EASILY the toughest of these songs for me to track down, REAL big thanx to D. Segal, there's a link to his cool site at the bottom. No buzzsaw intro, but KILLER!


RAMONES Chainsaw demo



6. NOW I WANNA SNIFF SOME GLUE--Extra fancy guitar pickin' from Johnny!





7. I DON'T WANNA GO DOWN TO THE BASEMENT--I'd be hard pressed to not call this superior to the album version.





8. LOUDMOUTH--A bit tentative perhaps, but great clarity on DeeDee's bass.





9.YOU SHOULD NEVER HAVE OPENED THAT DOOR--Neither HAVANA AFFAIR nor LISTEN TO MY HEART were attempted, but here's a good stab at what ended up being one of LEAVE HOME's less well mixed tracks. They struggle briefly with the oddly timed intro.






10. I CAN'T BE--The other gem which, along with LEARNED/TAMED never made it on to any of the bros' records. The central riff to CHINESE ROCK makes an early appearance, and DIG the cool montage of vintage Bob Gruen and Danny Fields pix from period music mags!





11. 53RD AND 3RD--GREAT vokes from DeeDee throughout, and the fat mix shows Tommy's drumming to great advantage. Great tom sound and eccentric hihat pulloffs.




12. YOU'RE GONNA KILL THAT GIRL--LET'S DANCE was not attempted, but this similarly early 60s flavored original was, so it'll take it's place. Bass heavy, but a fun alternative to the LEAVE HOME version, which is voke heavy, amongst other problems. Still strong enough to coax SIRE to offer a single contract to the band for this song, an offer they rejected, holding out for an lp deal.

Click here to listen:
YOU'RE GONNA KILL THAT GIRL demo



13. I DON'T WANNA WALK AROUND WITH YOU--One of this collection's strongest finds, an unbelievably awesome sonic barrage.




14. TODAY YOUR LOVE, TOMORROW THE WORLD--Our alternate '14 commandments' comes to a powerful end, uncensored lyrics and all.


Click here to listen:
TODAY YOUR LOVE TOMORROW THE WORLD demo






15. JUDY IS A PUNK--Another poppier attempt.






16. I WANNA BE YOUR BOYFRIEND--This time trying it in D, somewhat more polished.






17. WHAT'S YOUR GAME--This was the only Marty Thau demo that didn't fit too well into the construct of what I was aiming for, and it's only online via tumblr with kinda dicey sound, so I've saved it for the end. Nonetheless, serious thanx to wienerherzog for putting it up, his link is below as well.

WHAT'S YOUR GAME demo via wienerherzog





I'd like to thank all of the youtube posters of this precious material. I know some of these links might not work on phones, but several of the clips were too cool to not get the nod.

Also thanx to D Segal for unhesitatingly supplying the final link to the puzzle. Here's a link to his RAMONES/MISFITS page.  RAMONES AND MISFITS COLLECTION

Plus kudos to wienerherzog for supplying the OTHER tough one. Here's his tumblr: HUMAN HIGHWAY

 Special thanx to Mullin for massive nerdbox support.



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HERE IS A LINK TO MY NEW BLOG-- A TRACK BY TRACK RAMONES CAREER OVERVIEW!!

RAMONES--HUMMING A SICKENING TUNE: An Overview
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Here's two RAMONES related sites I like:

BLITZKRIEG'S PSYCHOTHERAPY BOP

RAMONES WORLD WIDE GROUP HEY HO LET'S GO




Here's a link to MY tumblr--TRUCKSTOP'S TRUCKSTOP