The BLACKJACK RECORDS “Poo Poo List”, aka newsletter, postmarked August 5th, 1991 and mailed to me from Santa Barbara, CA.
This was a record label and later a robust mail-order catalog that operated out of Oakland by Scott Derr; at this time it was a tag-team operation between Derr and Tom Krueger. Derr had recently finished being the bass player and sometime singer in Monshock, version 1; the band would reform in Oakland two years later and go on to record their 45s and album.
There were multiple bent angles
to this early 90s SF Bay Area trio, but the one that seems to have pushed the
most posthumous buttons for folks is the heavy, blown-out, shit-fi psych side,
which posits (correctly) that Monoshock were easily of a par with multiple resin-fingered
forefathers as well as their then-peers Mainliner and High Rise.
The band also
occasionally trafficked in more “song”-like fuzzed/damaged punk rock, most in
evidence on their 45s and on the “Runnin’ Ape-Like From The Backwards Superman”
collection, but there are only mere whiffs of that stuff on these two new
archival CDs. One could ungenerously call these releases shoe-scraping; I
prefer to see them as onion-peeling, and those heads who ache for more of the
howling free-void blues that Monoshock sonically plumbed for about six years
will find much to damage their synapses with here, particularly outstanding long-form
instrumental scorchers like “It’s Not There” and “19th Street
There are marginally recognizable covers stuffed into corners throughout
the two discs as well, from demigods and in-jokes as diverse as the Pink Faeries,
Von Lmo, Howard Werth, Lee Hazelwood, Black Clothes & Pointy Shoes and
Social Distortion. Monoshock left it all on the table, every time, and
obviously left anything that remained on the tapes that make up these two discs. (Silver Current; silvercurrentrecords.com)–
From the debut MONOSHOCK 45 “Primitive Zippo” from 1994, put out on my own Womb Records.
The Monoshock fellas were extremely accommodating to my layout/insert ideas, and allowed me to include the excellent “Foot Print of the American Chicken” bumper sticker that I copied from some book about the 60s I had lying around – as well as to flog my own fanzine.
The newest episode of my hour-long music podcast, DYNAMITE HEMORRHAGE RADIO (#22), was recorded in a hotel room in Oslo, Norway this week, rather than in our home base of San Francisco. See if you can detect a distinct “Scandinavian” flair to the show, to say nothing of the babbling and storytelling brought on by extreme jet lag. With a plate of smoked salmon by my side and speed skaters cavorting outside of my window, I played new music from Hannah Lew (Grass Widow)’s COLD BEAT, from Baltimore’s WILDHONEY, as well as a new punisher from Australia’s EASTLINK – to go with some righteous tunes from other eras from Monoshock, Bill Direen & The Bilders, Weenie Roast, Fifty Foot Hose, Slovenly, Mike Rep & the Quotas and more.