Friday, April 18, 2008


A new ish of FACT hits the streets incl. a feature by myself on (ahem) the 20 Best Argentine Psych Records ever made....obviously, 'best' is such a subjective term and people who know waaay more about this topic than myself will undoubtedbly have serious issues with some of my picks, just the same as I don't agree with some of Copey's choices in his "Krautrocksampler" book and think that some of the Kraut stuff he disses is pretty cool too...but, hey, some degree of personal taste has ta come into these things, pluuuuus I've widened my picks to incl. some Acid Folk, 'Eavy and even some slightly Proggy stuff...and how could I not include the wonderful Vluba, dammit!

And squeezing a coupla sub-genres from an entire nation into a selection of 20 is a pretty ridiculous idea anyway - "20 best Brit Rock Records Ever" anyone? - but if it gets people checking out some of this righteous stuff, then all the better. Long term readers will be aware I've had something of a jones for Arg.Psych and 'Eavy for a while now, so if anyone would like to front me some cash to write a book (or a section of a book) that focuses in on this stuff in more loving detail, then I would surely be very pleased to hear from yuh...but ya ain't gonna, are ya?

((At some appropriate point in the far-flung future I'll post my full notes for the various albums that (quite rightly!) were edited back to fit in the mag - but, meanwhile, you really should go out and score a (free) copy of FACT...full of great stuff as usual, and great to see Woebot back in print-action w/ a piece on cassette-tapes (lovely that someone younger than me thinks that iPods r crap! So it's not just an Old Bloke thing), and really envious that Kiran got to sees the mighty Felix Kubin live...(I was baby-sittin' that night...))

So, anyway, I also asked some of my Argentine pals for their own personal Psych faves...

Aphra from Vluba's choices mirror'd some of my own, but he also included Invisible, who were Luis Alberto Spinetta's mid-70s band after Pescado Rabioso (Rabid Fish) wh/ point his fascination/obsession w/ Artaud and Surrealism were really starting to take hold...

Here's a version of his (Spinetta's) lovely absurdist folk-song "Por":

And, here's Pescado R from '72 (I love the way that (after the shooting scene) the band walk away and Spinetta mutters "Tonto" ("jerk" or "wanker")):

Aphra also name-checked a bunch of Nuggets/Arg.Garage-Punk bands such as Sandro y Los del Fuego, Los Beatniks, Los Gatos, Los Shakers, Los Interrogantes, Los Bestias, Los Knacks, La Barra de Chocolate ("hahaha... an unbelievable haha band!!!" he says) and Los Walkers....

2 or 3 of these I was already familiar with (Los Gatos, for example, I knew had had a huge mid-60s hit) and La Barra de Chocolate were already in my Top 20 list. Check the fuzz on this:

And I can't not put up the gorgeous 60's psych-pop single "Diana Divaga" by Os Abuelos de la Nada (“The Grandfathers of Nothingness”), which didn't make the final cut of the article...their main man Miguel Abuelo went on to record a fantastic solo album in '74 (another story for another day)...but dig this fab home-made fan-vid:

Meanwhile, Anla Courtis just recommended a whole bunch of other Argentine Psych/Acid Rock records which I mostly hadn't heard of, (apart from Montes and, er, Invisible):

Piel de Pueblo - "Rock de las Heridas" (Disc Jockey, 1972)

Cuero - "Tiempo Despues" (Music Hall 1973)

Invisible - "Invisible" (Talent 1974)

Montes - "Cuando Brille el Tiempo" (Phillips, 1974)

Kubero Diaz y La Pesada - "Kubero Diaz y La Pesada"(Music Hall, 1973)

Redd - "Tristes Noticias del Imperio" (Cavoclo, 1979)

Actually, Music Hall were a pretty important label in the development of this music...fronting a whole bunch of crucial early 70s releases...and I oughta mention that, of course, there were loadsa great Argentine Punk, New Wave and Post-Punk bands fightin' tha good fight during and after the terrible Dirty War period, but that's another piece for another day...trivial fool that I am, this is an excuse to celebrate that wonderful era that blazed so brightly n briefly up until the mid-70s...

M-meanwhile, Anla says: "by the way, I'm recording an album now with Daddy Antogna original drummer of Ave Rock, who also played in Orion's Beethoven... the project is somehow Prog & Psych Rock and is called Daddy Antogna & los de Helio... also I have a new CD with Boredoms's Yoshimi & Yamamoto on Public Eyesore, a square 8" in Alt.Vinyl series and, in a couple of weeks, a new solo CD on Blossoming Noise made up only with "Unstringed Guitar & Cymbals"..."

Busy geezer, that Mr. Courtis!

I'm also hoping that one day Carlos Alonso, who I spoke to briefly recently and who lived thru some pretty tumultuous times, playing in bands from the early 60s thru the 70s up until today, will fill in some fascinating nuts n bolts details about about those eras...

Great also, talking to John from Holy Mountain records recently, who's also an Argentine Psychonaut and, like me, loves the 'Eavier end of the Psych Nuum...I took heart from him saying that some of the 'Eavy Arg bands were finally getting much-deserved recognition in the U.S. 35 years on...the whole 'Eavy Renaissance is pretty exciting to's been happening under our noses, but v. few people seem to have spotted it. 'speckt to Copey and his crew for championing it in the UK for some time now. 'Eavy Rock, eh, who woulda thought it's time would come again?

Hmmm: let's finish up w/ a bit of Color Humano (and a few friends!):