"Radically distinctive and without equal" is the definition of "Unique" in my dictionary.
THAT is Bungle in a nutshell.
These two songs are forever linked together because of the order in which
they appear on the CD, but they couldn't be more disparate in style.
One is impish, robotic, and cartoonish; the next is retro, ethereal, and damn near rapturous.
Both need to be heard.
And now for an added treat, here is a music video inspired by "Golem":
Bionic Vapour Boy Music Video by Geoff Moses, Sam Hewitt and Edward Fransisco 2010
from Geoff Moses on Vimeo.
19. Where Your Eyes Don't Go - They Might Be Giants
"Where your eyes don't go a filthy scarecrow waves his broomstick arms and does a parody of each unconscious thing you do..."
How many songs have this much to say in just the very first line?? This is typical of the twisted tales this duo often doles out.
Musically, the song caroms off the walls of offbeat influence, turning a new trick at every corner.
The backup vocals seem to be provided by a barbershop quartet escapee.
20. *Battle of the Leaves - Pictures **
I would have to say it is a safe bet that if I don't put this song up for download, your deprived ass will never hear it.
My feature on this obscure duo of Stennett and Rocca explains why.
This track is a dark, ambient, ghostly journey.
An anthem to desolation and wind-whipped loneliness.
I have personally listened to it while traveling down a forgotten highway somewhere in the middle of Nevada
at 3:00 AM, and it sent Chills through my very Being
...I will work on getting this one up for d/l
21. Argh... Fuck... Kill! - Day Glo Abortions
This is as Blatantly Obnoxious as music can possibly get, and God, I love this song!
The lyrics are kept simple:They are the same as the title.
(Except for the brilliant verses of "BLAH BLAH BLAH blah blah blah blah..." etc.)
Between that and the 4-chord progression, this is Pure Genius, I tell 'ya.
22. *The Puppet - D.I. **
This is Top Ten material here, folks. One of the coolest damn songs ever written.
D.I. was one of the great Orange County Punk bands, and this track
concerns itself with Part 3 of the truly frightening for-its-time T.V. movie "Trilogy of Terror".
In it, Karen Black is relentlessly pursued & assaulted by a rampaging, evil,
murderous, maniacal, spear-wielding, oven-proof little voodoo troll doll in her apartment.
The song is even better than the show.
Essential Psych Music.
23. White China - Ultravox
Wicked cool Humanized Electronic tune, one of UV's best.
The corniness factor which sometimes plagued these guys is more than
overcome by this transcendent track's sheer emotional and purposeful musical presence.
I think Midge Ure should try to re-discover some of this energy.
If you can, find the "Razormaid" remix. All of the coolest parts are made longer.
24. Chubby Meets Fats - Co kla coma **
Ohhh Kay... NOW we are getting into some of the Really Weird Shit.
This offshoot of Severed Heads is right on the mark with this one.
It starts out kinda bouncy and fluffy with all that jumpy fun stuff... (is that a Buddy Holly sample?)
Then Ellard kicks it into "Nardoo Flagoon Mode", and we are treated to a sort of "De-ascension" into musical pugatory.
The remainder of the "song" cannot be described in any sort of spoken or written form.
Just let me know whether it kicks up the goosebumps or just plain scares the hell out of 'ya.
25. Krafty Cheese - The Residents **
Oh yeah... more of that sweet Weirdness, eyeball-style.
Quite catchy and gregarious, this one, but as strange as can be.
What are they singing about?
Well... I believe it has something to do with the finer points of Botany and
the Lack of Carelessness required for such green-thumbed tasks.
It really doesn't matter much when you are this wonderfully demented.
26. Waitin' On the Cards to Fall - Guy Davis
Now I don't pretend to be any sort of expert on the Blues, as 99% of it bores me to tears.
But I do know the Real Deal when I hear it. This guy has got it DOWN, and this is one Damn Fine tune right here.
"Don't you raise your voice at me, for I am the boss of ALL you see..."
A rare combination of youthful fire, and a cat that has a voice thirty older than his own years.
Hell yeah, Guy... you da man!
27, 28. Drug Me - Dead Kennedys ** & Sepultura
To me, the greatest Punk song ever.
The DK's actually combined elements of Progressive music into their already manic hardcore style.
We are treated to quick stops & starts, off-meters, wild changes in tempo and dynamics. Awesome.
Sorry to all you DK purists, but Sepultura pulled this song off in a MORE than
brutal and admirable fashion, so their version certainly makes the list.
29. Wiggly Worm - No Means No
This one could easily share much of the above description. These frenzied bastards is all over the friggin' place.
Superbly Chaotic, this track seems to be a sort of homage to both DK and (even more so) DEVO.
Another highly recommended track.
30. Guests - Severed Heads **
Chills... The hair on the back of your neck stiffens...
The shapeless, eyeless spectre wafts and hovers...
Sorrow and languishing can be sensed in the vague sounds and distant voices...
Guests? Unsettled and Uninvited, indeed.
31. * The Birth of Sporting (Aphid Soup) - 5 UU's**
Another rare one. This instrumental was my fist introduction to this
slightly bonkers communal of ridiculously talented musicians.
Driving, odd-metered beats, cacophonous background noises, smoothly-transited
tempo shifts and stunning guitar work make this track an Avant/ Prog-Music fan's Wet Dream.
The band's official site can be accessed from their Feature here.
...There you will purchase ALL of their releases.
This is the closing track of Bel Marduk and Tiamat, an early, brilliant release.
32. Bottle of Blues - Beck
Here we are back on that ol' "Blues" kick. But I refuse to classify this as such; Exhibit A:
"...holdin' hands with an impotent dream /in a brothel of fake energy /put a nickel in the graveyard machine /i get higher and lower..."
The last time I checked, "Blues" numbers did not contain punch-drunk, cockamamie lyrics like that.
Gotta love it.
Bottom line: This is a very cool, laid-back tune with just enough off-the-wall behavior to keep the listener thinking and guessing.
33. Reconquering the Throne - Kreator **
This song couldn't possibly be more accurately titled. This is Kreator's return to form;
they have fully re-captured the blazing intensity of their releases of the mid-to late 80's.
Mille shreiks and barks, just like the good old days,
while displaying the crunching, precision riffage which made Kreator true legends of thrash.
~You will now BUY "Violent Revolution".
You will go HERE to do so.~
~END of Hypnosis Session~
34. Forbidden Zone - The Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo **
This stuff is as fun as it gets. The wacky, cartoonish mania that was Oingo Boingo was just starting to hit its peak here.
Composed as a soundtrack for his brother Richard's delightfully horrible film of the same name, this Danny Elfman project far outdid his bro's film.
This Title track starts out with some mostrous havoc:
WHOOOOAH LORDY Lemme OUTTA HERE Whoa-HA Whoa-HA waaaaooowooooaAHHHHoh!!!
Then it hits classic Boingo realms of Musical Mayhem & Erratic Precision.
Richard Elfman has the video available (signed!) for sale: HERE, but HURRY!! This is a true rarity.
35. *Joan Fan Club - Skafish
This is like an anthem to cruel pranks and the intolerance to obesity in the barbaric realms of high school.
It is an odd, jumpy, happy go lucky sounding song, but boy oh boy, are they being mean to poor Joan. You can't help but feel bad for the poor girl.
I mean shit, they wanna "push her down the stairs", they wanna "touch her little pizza-face", hell, they even wanna "stick some thumb tacks in her back".
Damn kids! What a great song this is, though. Catchy as fuck and plenty of instrumental prowess is displayed throughout.
...Looking at the Singer/ Frontman, Jim Skafish, you have to wonder what manner of sociological torture and ridicule he might have endured throughout his school days...
36. Los Angeles - Frank Black
Did you catch the short-lived VH1 show "Late World With Zach"?
If so, you have heard this KILLER fuckin' song. (Part of it was played during the opening credits)
If not, then FIND THIS ONE. It doesn't get any cooler than this.
It starts out with a sort of vagabond balladeer sounding thing,
then just RIPS into this awesome JAM, flows in and out of some cool progressive touches,
and ends with a killer John Lennon-esque acoustic section.
That's a lot of bang for your buck, my friends.
37. Serenade For Missy - The Residents **
This can only be compared to something like Retro-60's style, Emulated Escapist Big Band Elevator Muzak.
The thing is, if this were playing in an elevator, the people in there would certainly perform an odd ritual of alternately:
a. Merrily tapping their foot, and then
b. Looking up at the speaker, frowning and befuddled.
This is a song, which back in my partying days, was utilized as a soundtrack for the following activity:
We would put our tiny baby Alligator Lizard, Festus
(who was an inch long, head to tail, and smaller around than a pencil)
(not Festus, but a reasonable facsimile)
...we would put him on this cheap little multi-colored fiber-optic "fountain" and put the clear cube back over it.
We would then watch as this "fountain" would very slowly spin around, Festus aboard, with this completely absurd music playing.
This produced near-catastrophic laughter, because he would be looking up at you with this little tiny frown, as if to say;
"what the hell is wrong with you people?"
To this day, I cannot properly answer that question.
38. Adventures In Modern Recording - The Buggles
A truly incredible song.
The Buggles managed to merge Prog influence with invigorating 80's "New Wave"
even before this duo of Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes joined the Progressive masters of Grandiloquence Yes, in May, 1980.
This one deals with Music's "Plastic Age" with an insider's perspective; "...He's not playing..."
The song mounts in Epic proportions, and pretty much remains there throughout, with flawless production.
While some music of this era has become dated, this remains fresh and vital.
39. The Black Page, Part 2 - Frank Zappa **
This one is also discussed briefly in my Zappa Feature.
Now, I want to clarify which version of this song I am referring to;
it is NOT the one introduced by FZ as the "Easy Teenage New York Version". This one just comes off a bit stiff and unnatural, in my opinion.
We want the Baby Snakes Version. Remember that.
This is when I feel Zappa was at his best, when he let the music flow from the depths of his twisted soul.
As stated in the feature, the audience's reaction is the key here. Listen to them as much as you do the music itself. Amazing stuff.
This weaving labyrinth of musical apexes and bursts is complex and difficult to tap out on the dashboard of the car, but folks, that is why we're here.
We need to learn to tap it out.
The only thing that sucks about this version is that it is quite short, (less than 3 min.) and it just abruptly ends, leaving you with only "Rewind" or " Track".
I usually just record it twice in a row.
40. Condition Yellow - Gamma
This was an example of two musical minds melding into one.
We have Guitarist Ronnie Montrose on one end, and Keyboardist/ Composer Mitchell Froom on the other.
This track is where it all came together for these two.
Oh GOD this just absolutely fucking KILLS.
The beat is kept simple; it is a backdrop for Froom's electronic wizardry and Montrose's searing, confoundingly brilliant soloing.
I just wish they would have made an entire album of instrumentals like this one, leaving vocalist Davey Pattison to his Lou Gramm-wanna-be support group.
(he wasn't that bad, it's just kinda frustrating)
These two need to hook up again.
41. Strange Brew - Severed Heads **
First of all, you bunch of Old Hippies, I am NOT referring to the original version of this by Cream.
I don't care how great you thought Clapton and Bruce were.
I don't give the smallest rat's ass whether or not Ginger Baker made the stage Tremble and Rise during his drum solo.
This is IRRELEVANT to this version of the song.
ONLY Tom Ellard is capable of transforming something so mundane into something so immoderate and outlandish.
42. Detox - Strapping Young Lad **
Yes, it's about fucking time I got a Devin Townsend project up here.
This is a blistering, raging, caustic little number, driven by the unforgiving blasting brutality of Drummer Gene "The Machine" Hoglan.
Scraping, harsh sonic mayhem, delivered in an exploding package.
Often following the detonations, we have Devin's trademark swirling and far out melodies:
...which are precisely what sets this guy apart from the rest of the heap.
43. (Ghost) Riders in the Sky - Johnny Cash
Oooh... I got me a case of the shivers!
An absolutely brilliant version of this Western Classic, in my opinion, the best one. The way that guitar solo comes in is Pure Magic.
I have a special treat for anyone who likes this killer twanger.
(and those who don't... forever you will be cursed... "...A-tryin to catch the devil's herd/ across the endless sky...")
The treat is, some "cowpoke" has decided that this is "The Best Song Ever", and who am I to argue?
Anyway, he has put together a page which reviews damn near every version of this song to date.
Not only that, there is a link for you to hear every single one!
Just click the Pic:
A note: Sadly, this very cool page has vanished;
I did manage to grab quite a few of the versions. If you are interested, e-mail me.
44. Shining Faces (I Am Nino) - Snakefinger
This guy is badly missed. This Often-Guitarist for the Residents was more than just that.
Snakefinger was a truly unique talent, with a totally unmistakable style.
This endearing track has been on my fave list for many years now.
It is just so happy. Not like sappy/ sticky/ make you sick happy,
but the kind of song that just kinda makes all the world's Bad-Craziness go away for a few minutes.
It is an instrumental, with a vaguely "boogie-woogie" bass-line, overlayed with
thick layers the strange & glorious musical idioms of the Smelly-Tounged One.
45. Bullet Brain and Cactus Head - Split Enz
Here is a band that was badly under-appreciated.
The Finn Brothers and their crew had one of the most distictive and original sounds of all 80's bands.
You could just hear all of that South Seas/ New Zealand atmosphere just bleeding into their music.
This song was easily one of their best.
Built around a very ODD concept, to say the least, the content matches the title;
...with clanging pianos, vocal effects, a bizzare set of lyrics and characters and just plain looniness.
Seek it out.
46. Nuclear Winter - Sodom **
I wouldn't want you to think I was wimping out on you Thrashers & Grinders.
This is just a fierce, tempestuous, cataclysmic ball of fury.
Sodom, when at their best, will easily transform your Grey Matter into Mashed Potatoes and Gristle.
No weak-kneed namby-pamby human doormat should even attempt to endure this.
"...Causing the premature burial of nature/ With the spark to a powder keg/
Pining up their toys on the shoulders of the nation/ Turning death into universal heir..."
Every greedy, power-mad, war-mongering World leader in history
should be relentlessly exposed to this, and things of this nature;
made to understand consequences; Death on a Grand Scale... for all Eternity.
47. A Million Angels - Severed Heads **
This one always Creeps me out in all the right ways.
The things that Sevcom can do to a human mind are beyond description.
Whenever it comes time to describe one of their tracks, I just seem to lock up. (for a minute or so...)
This one brings conflicting feelings of tragedy and elation, and then maybe
provoking thoughts of The Angels, gathered upon the rim of this arena (our world) with tears in their eyes...
You must tune the mind into the sonically peripheral goings-on;
with much of Severed Heads' material, the background is where the heart of the music lies.
48. Baby/Death - Nightmare Lodge
Yes, the title is a disturbing one.
This is one of the most effective examples of the "Dark Ambient" Genre of Electronic Music.
Ivan Iusco Is a true master of this style. This, like most of their tracks, is a Musical Journey
...ideal for Road Trips, Out-Of-Body-Experiences, or just wandering through my Weirdness Section.
Look for a Feature (& maybe more) on Nightmare Lodge here soon.
49. Taste The Poison - Napalm Death **
Obstreperous: 1. "Boisterously and noisily aggressive" 2. "Noisily and stubbornly defiant"
The very day this became available, my best bro, Frank, ultra-enthusiastically described this to me as "Napalm Meets Hackett".
Needless to say, I nearly jumped out of the chair and shattered limbs on a quest to find it.
Nope, no question about it, this Virulent track Blisters the Skin and has Maniacal Prog Foundations as well.
Inexorable: "Not capable of being swayed or diverted from a course; unsusceptible to persuasion"
Man, these guys NEVER FAIL.