Where do I start here ?
Rumors were all over the place for many years that some recordings like these existed, and now finally they have surfaced. Totally worth the wait ! It’s kind of a long story, and it all has to do with one man and his quest to start as many bands as possible over several year period all across the western US from 93 to 99.
Jamie Paul Lamb is the source of this beautiful madness. Each band is unique in its own manner, (thats right all 19 of them) and is some of the most original stuff I’ve heard in a long time. The song writing subject matter is part creepy part hilarious. It reminds me of early Estrus and Crypt recordings from the 90’s. So these recordings are like taking a step back in time in the best way possible. Maybe it was meant to be these micro/ unreleased cassettes wouldn’t see the light of day until now. From pure hate, death, lurkers, herpes, bloody cocks, mutiple cunt references (positive and negative) date rape, and headless clowns ? All the ultra creep action is right here in 2 LP’s.
One of the most impressive highlights at least for me was the Les Fleurs Du Mal recordings. Both Look Into My Eyes and Sweet, Sweet Satan are solid examples of Lamb’s songwriting and production style. I feel like had I heard these songs 7 or 8 years ago when Satan’s Youth Ministers first started we would have probably covered Sweet, Sweet Satan. It just sounds like a song we would have written. The guitar riffs, the organ parts, everything about it really. Also I need to highlight the title track by Magister Ludi, We’re Loud. Its super on the Devo/Units side of things and really sets itself apart from anything else on this comp.
Next up , I need to elaborate on another thing with these recordings. An excellent choice of riffs. Sometimes when I listen to older recordings like this a lot of riffs can just sound recycled and too much like other band’s songs. But that just doesn’t happen here. It’s super original. That is so hard to do no matter what kind of music you are involved in. There isn’t a dull moment at all here, crossing the boundaries from organ fueled garage, to hardcore punk, to lo-fi scuzz and everything in between. It has the potential to be one if not the best archival release this year, maybe even the past 10 years. I hope this isn’t the end of these recordings, because this is an extremely refreshing batch of material that looks back on exactly how garage in the 90’s was it seems. It’s not one of those records you will just put down and forget. But if you do, once you re-discover it will be a sweet reunion.
Big props to Slovenly for bringing these long-lost gems back to life. And what a better way to do it than name a fest after it, host some of the greatest bands in garage today, and some of the best of the past. The Kids are a huge influence for me in what I wanted to do as musician in a punk band, so to know they are going to grace the stage again is a really good feeling. It’s only rock and roll. Totally harmless right ? This record taught me an important life lesson asking myself question. Have you ever had a guy roll up on you ? Have you ever known a man ? Yes, now I understand.
By Justin Crumpton