ISMO

"The world's only FREE regular music magazine"

Issue 25: 14 April 1999

Edited & compiled by Mr Slutto, Siggsworthy Craggs and Atilla the Hen


CONTENTS:

WEIRD SCENES INSIDE THE GOLDMINE:

Peculiar music/art news from around the world including Sooty's solvent-sniffing and the Pope's forthcoming CD.

RECORD REVIEWS:

Creed, Dawn of the Replicants, John Ellis, The Fall, Fish, Fuel 238, Gene, Ginuwine, Lamb, Lindisfarne, Man, Tom Newman, John Perry, Silverchair, Wishbone Ash, five various artists compilations.

WARNINGS FOR LIQUOR BOTTLES AND ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES...

MISSING LINKS

A selection of some music-oriented websites.

TWITCHY THE TRAMP looks at the British upper class.

(THE GOSSIPING HEN will be back next issue, as Atilla the Hen has flown off on holiday to a coop somewhere east of Uppingham.)


WEIRD SCENES INSIDE THE GOLDMINE:

Peculiar music/art news from around the world

School Bans Nude Olympics

The Princeton University Board of Trustees has voted to ban the students' traditional "Nude Olympics" after this year's event turned into an alcoholic brawl, The Daily Princetonian reported Monday. It said the board voted Saturday to abolish the 30-year-old annual ritual, in which students gather for a nude frolic at midnight following the year's first snowfall.

After this year's event, students at the elite Ivy League school complained of being sexually groped, and more than a dozen of the 350 participants landed in hospitals with alcohol poisoning or injuries. "The trustees find intolerable the serious risks that this event poses to our students' health, safety and well-being..." the board said in a statement. - Reuters, 13 April 1999.

Disney caves in to Catholic protest

A film starring Matt Damon and Ben Affleck as subversive angels trying to sneak back into Heaven has been rejected by the Walt Disney studio as potentially offensive to Catholics.

'DOGMA' features a descendant of Jesus who works in an abortion clinic, and Alanis Morissette, the pop singer, in the role of God. The script, which also depicts Joseph and Mary having sex, was condemned yesterday by the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights as bigoted and disturbing. The film was shown to Disney executives who deemed it inappropriate for the company, as it's trying to re-establish its family-friendly status after years of attacks from religious groups.

The story tells how Damon and Affleck, convinced they have discovered a loophole in Catholic dogma, set out to undermine God's entire creation by re-entering Heaven after being cast out. They are helped by an apostle played by the black comedian Chris Rock, whose lines reportedly include: "Do I know Jesus? Hell, the nigger owes me $12." - The Times, London, 9 April 1999.

(EDITORIAL: It sounds like a bloody good film to me, and I hope that, if Disney are too spineless to release it, they licence it to an 'indie' film outfit... - Slutto.)

Star discovers naked truth of success

One of Japan's most popular and perverse television challenges came to an end on March 28, and for the naked star of the show it was probably not a moment too soon.

Every Sunday for more than a year, 15 million viewers have tuned in to watch the exploits of Nasubi, a 23-year-old comedian who has been confined to a tiny apartment since January 1998. His challenge was to eke out an existence until he won one million yen (5,700) worth of prizes in magazine competitions. He had to live only on the prizes he won. His reward was fame, although he was not told exactly how it would arrive.

Unbeknownst to him, Japan's top variety programme, Susunu Denpa Shonen! (Electric Boy!), has broadcast his progress with the aid of two hidden cameras. Over the past 15 months, viewers have seen his hair and beard grow longer as the apartment filled with prizes. Despite taking part in more than 1,000 magazine competitions a week, the only clothing Nasubi won was a pair of women's trousers. They didn't fit so he lounged around naked, apparently unaware that the country was watching. To ensure a modicum of decency, NTV covered his genitals with a nasubi (aubergine) icon.

The programme has made compulsive viewing. The prizes he has won have ranged from a tent to essentials such as rice and dogfood. One highlight showed a delighted Nasubi heading off to the toilet after winning his first rolls of toilet paper in 10 months. Japan's tabloids have tried to expose the show as a fraud. Nasubi had to be moved three times as journalists got too close for comfort. His diaries were published as a book and became best-sellers and his face soon graced commercials for some of the things he won.

Dry dog food was at one point was his only source of nourishment. His winnings led to a strange diet ranging from fresh crab one day to uncooked rice another as he had not won any saucepans. The producers said he was given regular medical check-ups and could have left at any time.

At times the comedian has been tormented almost to the point of cruelty. When he reached his first goal, the producer woke him up in the middle of the night by firing party poppers at his genitals.

Nasubi seemed to bear it all with good humour, a spirit that has won him millions of fans. Articles in women's magazines have noted his good health despite his cramped life and canine diet.

Nasubi apparently had no idea that he had become a national celebrity until the shooting of Sunday's show, when he was finally let in on the joke. Without telling Nasubi that he had reached his goal, the producers led him into a "waiting room" where he was sitting naked when the walls collapsed around him to reveal a studio full of guests. (29-3-99 Guardian; Telegraph)

Sooty and Sweep episode was 'danger to children'

After 50 years of harmless fun and games, Sooty and Sweep are criticised by a television watchdog today for encouraging "dangerous behaviour" among children.

The Independent Television Commission upheld complaints about a recent episode of ITV's Sooty And Co in which the puppets started acting oddly after sniffing essential oils from what looked like medicine bottles. The commission ruled that the programme had breached its programme code by portraying "dangerous behaviour" that could be easily imitated by children.

Presenter Corbett was shown swallowing homeopathic pills to cure his headache while his puppets played with bottles of essential oils, including one called "essence of farmyard", which one of them had supposedly created. On the programme, Sweep emptied a bottle's contents over one of his friends. Granada, the programme's maker, told the ITC that the oils had been clearly labelled.

"Our intention had been to introduce children to fragrances, not to encourage them to play with bottles," said a spokesman. The show had "moved with the times and kept itself abreast of popular themes, one of which was aromatherapy and homeopathy." - Electronic Telegraph 22 March 1999:

Pope John Paul aims for charts

Sony Classical and Vatican Radio launched a CD and music video by a first-time artist with some big backing: Pope John Paul. Producers will release the first million copies of Abba Pater - nothing to do with the Swedish pop giants - around the world next Tuesday, timing it for the Easter holidays and the forthcoming 2,000th anniversary of Christianity.

Culled from Vatican Radio recordings over John Paul's 20-year papacy, Abba Pater features the Pope reciting psalms, Gospels and other inspirational passages and occasionally singing. Mixed in the recording studio is a world beat music background - everything from chants from Uganda with African percussion, to Slavonic liturgy from Bratislava, to Celtic flutes to classical.

Court Jails Belching Radio Pirate

A Dutch court has sentenced a radio pirate to 20 months jail and a $1,995 fine for breaking into the police frequency and belching.

The 22-year-old obstructed police between August and December last year by belching on the airwaves and playing loud disco music, the court in the southern Dutch city of Maastricht heard. The accused, identified only by his initials, also taped police radio messages and broadcast them back days later.

"Sometimes the disturbance was so great that it was impossible for the police control room to communicate with officers," the prosecution said. - Reuters, 18-3-99.

Lottery hopefuls seek late singer's guidance

Lottery-crazy Thailanders are snapping up tickets like never before - prompting the appearance of a flood of books on how to beat the odds and attain instant wealth. Especially popular are titles that help lottery players choose numbers through the interpretation of dreams.

There are even special recipes purported to induce dreams about the lottery. Unusual sights, scenes or incidents are commonly thought to hold significance for the lottery player.

The Phumphuang Shrine in Suphanburi province, north of Bangkok, named after Phumphuang Duangjan, a hugely popular singer who died of a ysterious disease in 1994. The shrine has become nationally renowned for the high number of people who have hit the jackpot after making offerings there. Before the images are offerings left by devotees: heaps of jasmine or marigold garlands and thousands of burning joss sticks.

Good vibrations: the first electronic musical instrument...

The theremin was the first electronic instrument. Invented by a Russian spy, it defined the sinister score of Hitchcock's film 'Spellbound' and gave a groundbreaking sound to the Beach Boys 'Good Vibrations'.

In 1945, Alfred Hitchcock was searching for a new sound. His Freudian chiller, 'Spellbound', required a score that would really raise goosebumps. Hitchcock's composer, Miklos Rozsa, suggested using the theremin. Hitch agreed to give it a go although, Rozsa recalled later, he wasn't exactly sure if you "ate it or took it for headaches". In fact, the theremin had been around for 25 years and could lay claim as the earliest viable electronic musical instrument. Its ethereal wail was perfect for the psychotic terror that seeped through the film.

The theremin was named after its inventor, Leon Theremin, born in Russia in 1896. He supported the Bolsheviks in 1917 and after the Revolution was in Leningrad working on surveillance equipment and pioneering an early form of television. The instrument that bears his name was developed in 1920 while he was experimenting with radio apparatus.

This seems as improbable as Adolphe Sax stumbling across the saxophone whilst plumbing in a U-bend, but no less sensational is the invention itself. It resembles no more than a plain box of coils and wires with a couple of aerials protruding. Operation is quite simple, but fiendishly difficult to master. Glinsky explains: "Two high-frequency oscillators generate an identical note beyond the reach of human hearing. The theremin allows the natural body capacitance of the hands to control electrical fields in the air between the antennae."

Astonishingly, the theremin is unique as the only musical instrument played with no actual physical contact. With one hand controlling the pitch, and the other the volume, the chaotic whines and groans can be modulated to produce discrete musical pitches. Played proficiently, the sound is not unlike the human voice, a kind of ghost in the machine. Imagine listening to the Star Trek theme on shortwave radio.

Leon Theremin unsurprisingly attracted the attention of the KGB and his invention was classified as top secret. To escape the restrictions on his work, he fled Russia for the United States in 1927. "In America it was announced as a magical device which heralded a new era in electronic music," says Glinsky. RCA were quick to see the novelty value and manufactured 500, backed by a fierce publicity campaign. Many people were unsure what to make of the new gadget. Even more baffling was how to play it. "I almost don't like to say this, but it's really the most difficult musical instrument in the world to play," admits Glinsky.

Twenty-one years after Hitchcock first took the theremin to the movies, Brian Wilson was also in Hollywood, recording one of pop's greatest three-and-a-half minutes. "Good Vibrations" was the Beach Boys' second song to feature the theremin: the first being "I Just Wasn't Made For These Times". A vital contribution to an astonishing record, it quickly became a pet sound. The following year Captain Beefheart reputedly drafted in none other than Sam Hoffman to electrify his first album, Safe as Milk. The theremin, in various customised forms, has since provided a background hum for artists as diverse as Kraftwerk, Paul Weller and the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band. Jimmy Page has a special fondness for it, using it on Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love" and on the recent Page and Plant tour. Hawkwind's thereminist, it is rumoured, even fashioned an axe-shaped version to fit in with his local music scene. The ultimate air guitar, you might say. - The Independent - 13 April 1999


New alcohol labels?

ADDITIONAL WARNINGS THE FDA IS CONSIDERING FOR LIQUOR BOTTLES AND ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES...

13. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may make you think you are whispering. You're not.

12. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol is a major factor in vomiting in your car, on your sofa, and down the front of your best friend's dress.

11. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may cause you to tell the same boring story over and over again until your friends want to SMACK YOU.

10. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may cause you to thay shings like thish.

9. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may lead you to believe that ex-lovers are dying to see you at 4 a.m.

8. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may lead you to wonder what the hell happened to your pants.

7. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may cause you to roll over in the morning and see something really scary.

6. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol is the leading cause of inexplicable rug burns on the forehead.

5. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may create the illusion that you are tougher than a 250-pound boxer named Bubba.

4. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may lead you to believe that the police can't catch you.

3. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may lead you to think people are laughing WITH you.

2. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may cause a flux in the time-space continuum, whereby large gaps of time may seem to disappear.

1. WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may cause pregnancy.


MISSING LINKS

www.hawkwind.com

Official Hawkwind Web Site, featuring press archives, rare photos, news direct from the Hawkwind camp, record release information and chances for you to conduct your own Cyberspace interviews with members of the band, both past and present. The site was first published on the World Wide Web on 10th June 1996 and is run by the band's own label, The Emergency Broadcast System Limited.

Suede Bootleg Discography: hmercury.beseen.com/chat/rooms/p/5834/

dalex.home.mindspring.com/music/wolfe.htm

Capturing the best in the spirit of raw Irish folk music, The Wolfe Tones are sure to make anyone want to clap along and stomp their feet. Raise a pint to these men who have been singing out the songs of freedom, of a United Ireland for more than 25 years. Taking their name from the great Irish patriot, Theobald Wolfe Tone, the father of Irish Republicanism, The Wolfe Tones have spent years putting out their records, recounting the good auld songs and writing new ones to be passed down through time. All the elements of good Irish folk music are there... patriotism, adventure, loves lost and gained, the rebel spirit, humor, and lament. The Wolfe Tones are a staple in Irish folk music.


PRICK UP YOUR EARS

TOUR NEWS

NATO's Central European Tour.

Venue: The Theatre of War, The Balkans.

What is the hidden agenda of NATO's action in Serbia? There must be one, unless NATO is really acting solely out of humanitarian and selfless concern to stop oppression. This would be a first in NATO's 50-year history and a pretty rare event in Human history generally!

In Iraq the underlying issue was oil: "O, I, L," as then-President Bush literally spelt out for us in the early days of the Kuwait invasion by Iraq - before he hastily retracted. In VietNam and Korea it was dogma about which socio-economic creed should be spread - capitalism or communism.

But what's the underlying issue in Serbia? Why is the American administration willing to risk seeing US personnel return home in body-bags - something that the American public notoriously has no stomach for?

Slutto Says: Perhaps NATO just want to write a new International Rulebook? NATO is acting illegally so far as UN rules are concerned, and they have set a precedent for attacking a sovereign state. An investment for the future? - precedents are handy things to have. Anyone got any other ideas?


THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UNLISTENABLE

(CD REVIEWS)

***** Brilliant
**** Pretty damn Good
*** Average but no Cigar, Mr President
** Could do better
* Shite

Creed: My own Prison
Epic 493078 2 **

Apparently these guy were the biggest selling rock band in America during 1998. That is North America, I don't think any Amazonian tribes have "got down" to them yet. Maybe I'm wrong here, perhaps they all listen to them whilst "eating" in their local branch of Mc Donalds situated just where the rain forest used to be. I digress. Whilst not exactly my cup of tea it did get my feet tapping. Nice guitars and some good tunes, I'm sure rock afficianados will love it. Creed are planning to appear in the U.K this spring. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

Dawn of the Replicants: Wrong Town, Wrong Planet, Three Hours Late
Eastwest 3984-264-2 ***

No this is not the new British Rail manifesto (but if you live in the U.K you would be forgiven for thinking so). It is however a rather likeable album from a band with a strong streak of originality. Lets face it, any band who write songs called "Sub erotic fields" and "Fearless vampire hunters" can`t be all bad. Check out these lyrics from the track "Rule the roost" - "She's a dancer on the Mary Celeste, but that's O.K. I feel like Eliot Ness". I rest my case. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

John Ellis: Das Geheimnis des Golem
Voiceprint SAVP102CD ***

Written in 1991 for an exhibition of not very attractive paintings by German artist Moishe Moser, this music far exceeds in worth the pictures it accompanied. True to its title this is an organic sounding record redolent of the wet clay oozing and slopping as the golem shambles about its un-natural buisness. For those who don`t know, the golem was a legendary monster created from clay an brougt to live by a Jewish Rabbi by means of a mystic simbol on the head . Like Frankenstin`s monster the golem eventually turns on humanity after developing its own will. Who says you never learn enything in ISMO? - Sigsworthy Craggs.

The Fall: Dragnet
Step-Forward Records COGVP113CD ***

I don't know quite why I like this band. The vocals are discordant to an unbelievable degree and all the songs sound the same. Imagine the Joy Division without their imagination and creativity and Ian Curtis attempting to sing with laryngitis. You get the picture. But they have a certain something that makes me like them, I'm sure if they were a discordant rap "band" whose songs all sound the same(as rap invariably does) I would hate them. Now`t so queer as folks. - Sigsworthy Craggs

Fish: Raingods with Zippos
Roadrunner RR8677-2 Release date: 19 April 1999. ****

A Marillion ex closes his studio and record company, assembles a few cronies, and gets back to doing what he does best...

Very much an album of two halves. 'Plague of Ghosts' spans 6 tracks and finds Derek Dick, ex-front man of Marillion, in thoughtful and melodic mood for this 26-minute concept session. 'We are back on course', the CD liner notes say. By way of contrast the first six tracks are considerably more raunchy, on the whole. 'Faith Healer' ("Can I put my hands on yewww...") is the only cover version, but blends well with the other five. Well, they're all potentially more 'immediate' in their popular appeal, without being as overtly commercial as, say, 'Kayleigh' - thank god.

Overall, a strong and eminently enjoyable package. - Slutto.

Closest Internet newsgroup: alt.music.marillion

Fuel 238: Sunburn
Epic 550. 493223-2. Released: 1 Feb 1999. **

Debut album from Tennessee hard rock 4-piece, who are supporting Silverchair on tour in April. Sold over 1 million in the US.

Fair-to-middlin' typical heavy metal support band. The sort of band you swig lager to while people are still shuffling into their seats. Lights flash on a group of people on stage knocking out monolithic 4 or 5 minute slabs of untextured rock, while you calmly skin up a few numbers for later, and speculate with your mates about what the main act are going to perform. And afterwards, nothing much about Fuel really sticks in the mind.

I wouldn't be annoyed if Fuel played support to someone I'd paid to see, but that's all, I'm afraid. - Slutto

Gene: Revelations
Polydor GENEC 4 547 119-2 Release date: 1 Mar 99. *

The first track on this record is called "As good as it gets", very true and that track`s shit. Dull imitation of "The Smiths" who themselves were an overated, disinteresting bunch of sour-faced no talents. The only revelation on "Revelations" is that Gene are a third rate student band with a one way ticket to Obscureityville. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

Mildly socio-political lyrics in a light-weight pop rock setting, this dismal album takes 5 or 6 tracks just to rise to the level of bland mediocrity. It then continues that ascent slowly, probably struggling to reach average only on the last two tracks.

A third-rate version of The Smiths with Jon Anderson (of Yes) on vocals, says Atilla. And 'The Police' (track 12) sounds like a Suede out-take. They've had 9 hit singles; this is their third album; and they've just finished a 27-date tour in the UK. We really cannot see why they're so apparently popular. - Slutto.

Ginuwine: 100% Ginuwine
550 Music *

Ginuwine (as well as being dyslexic) is cocky and arrogant with self-obsessed lyrics. He sounds like a down-market Prince; and let's face it you can`t get more down-market than Prince! Track 3 "What`s so Different" sounds as if it has Godzilla`s roar sampled in the background. If this is true I hope Toho studios sue, and the big G comes over from Japan and eats this loser. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

Lamb: Fear of Fours
Fontana **

A right oddball one this, don't know what to make of it. The singer has a very sexy voice and the music is a little like The B-52s in places and like Portishead in others but without the manicness of the former or the sweet meloncholia of the latter. Lamb achives far less in my affections than eather of these two. Worth checking out but nothing to get excited about. - Sigsworthy Craggs

Lindisfarne: Untapped & Acoustic
Park Records PRK CD43 double CD **

What`s the bloody point? I ask, somewhat miffed. Alan Hull is dead so they do a double acoustic CD without him... This is a waste of time,and moreover, a dull waste of time. Buy it at your peril. - Atilla the Hen

Man: Rare Man
Voiceprint PNTVP 120CD. Reviewed 25-3-99. **

Mixed-bag chronology of rarities from Welsh prog-rock band formed in 1968 and reformed in 1983. No Internet newsgroup. Man newsletter: http://Manband.listbot.com

Genuinely rare stuff, not just a re-licensing con: most of the 19 tracks haven't been on CD before but are mostly 70's European singles or previously-unused studio recordings, some being pretty embryonic - ie, a bit ropey. The reproduction quality is better than Man's 'To Live for to Die' reviewed in issue 15 (well, it could hardly be worse!) but it's still very muddy in places.

In some ways, this Man CD is possibly suitable for the wider public - the jaunty merrily-riffing lead guitar, keyboard twirls and lively stripped-down boogie beat, sometimes reminiscent of early Quo, work quite well in the short song format. When Man apply that hallmark, that is. The trouble is, half of this stuff could be any old pub band playing.

It's an odd mixture of stuff. The glaring anomoly on this CD (and also my fav) is Bananas, a 15-min 1973 mostly-instrumental live track rather like 'Spunk Rock', with its raunchy riffing format - classic Man lifted from a 1976 single, which is why it's in two parts. A great shame Voiceprint couldn't access the original master. Further on, a few of the tracks are blandly commercial, three are only very loosely associated with Man, and quite a few veer perilously close to the old-fashioned rock 'n' roll that anonymous pub bands often churn out - that is, they don't even approach the calibre of 'Daughter of the Fireplace'.

Man fans will probably be interested in checking it out but probably won't often return to it except to hear 'Bananas' - Slutto

Tom Newman: Tall Scary Things
Voiceprint VP183CD **

Sigsworthy seemed shocked when I told him I quite like this album! (See below for his review.) It's quite a mellow and slightly spacey ramble through some bloke's hang-ups from childhood onwards, with faint influence by Gong and Floyd, and rather nice meandering guitar in places. 2 stars - Slutto

What do Voiceprint think they are doing? They won`t record excellent bands like The Amphibians from Outer Space but they churn out cack like this, WHY? The lyrics are so bad they defy belief but then again the production values are so bad many of them are thankfully muffled from one`s ears. I can`t imagine how this guy gets any funding. Who in their right mind would waste time and money on such bottom-of-the-barrel dross? Avoid at all costs. One star - Sigsworthy Craggs

John G. Perry: Sunset Wading
Voiceprint BP288CD **

Innofensive, soft music you could play at a vicarage tea party without causing offense. Sort of like "Tubular Bells" with a cotten wool wrapping. This is the sort of music Walter the Softie* would listen to. I bet they would even play this in Afganistan were music is banned for being evil and decadent. So woolly that new age shops would ban it! - Sigsworthy Craggs.

* Walter is a character in the long running British comic "The Beano". This prince of softies is the arch enemy of Dennis the Menace (who has no connection with the rather whimpy American character of the same name). The British Dennis is spikey black haired, boot sporting, eternaly 10 year old proto-punk who has been commiting acts of gross violence for the entertainment of children since the mid 40s.

Silverchair: Neon Ballroom
Columbia COL 493309 9 Released: 15 March 1999. ***

Aussie medium-to-heavy-rock trio with quality and with various guests.

Widely regarded as a grunge band, this really doesn't qualify as grunge as it's more textured and thoughtfully constructed than one expects from 'mere' grunge bands.

This, their third album, is mostly medium-tempo rock of considerable maturity and texture (for the genre, that is) and with melodic vocals rather than Bon Jovi type bollock-straining neck-tendon-displaying screech posturing. 'Anthem for the Year 2000' is the first single taken from this album; both being released ahead of their Euro-tour. Whatever happened to Black Sabbath, I mutter into my lager as I hear Silverchair doing it with panache and some style. Where are the leaden riffs and mournful dirges of guitar and doom-laden vocals, then? Well, track 10 ('Satin Sheets') is getting there - but it only lasts 2m 22s, which is rather taking the piss! Still, they're only kids - not even 20 yet - so give 'em time, eh?

A fair amount of texture throughout, and no fairies wearing boots. - Slutto

Internet Newsgroup: alt.music.silverchair

Wishbone Ash: From the Archives Vol 3
Powerbright PBVP 003CD ** (unless you're a fan)

Official archive releases of 80's and 90's stuff covering a wide range of sources (promo tapes, radio, etc) and lineups and styles. Eight bass players (including Wetton) are here - Ash have got through more bass players than Hawkwind have, and that's saying something.

The range of styles is large. Why a band that carved out their own well-respected niche in the 70's felt a need, in the 80's, to imitate Bon Jovi I cannot comprehend, but they did - and that phase is included here. For the sake of historical completeness I suppose it had to be, goddamnit. There's also a demo from guitarist Ted Turner's old band Choice and a live version of Love Abuse.

This mish-mash of unconnected items, with its varying recording quality, seems aimed primarily at hard-core fans. - Slutto

VARIOUS ARTISTS:

Garagelands Volume two: Strange Things
Voiceprint BAMVP1006CD ***

Reviewing records can get a tad tedieous at times, when every record seems to sound the same (god not another (c)rap album). So this collection is a breath of fresh air. A compilation of bands I've never even heard of. Come on be honest how many of you out there have come across "Sid Herring and the Giants", "Iron Butterfly", or "The Vita-Men" ? Not every track`s a winner but with 28 numbers a fair proportion are, and they're different and that counts for a lot with this jaded reviewer. Hard to classifie this music, most of it sounds a little like "The Lovin Spoonfull" or "Jefferson Airplane" (in fact one band is called "Jefferson Handerchief"and their track "Allergic to Flowers is one of the best on the record). Well worth a listen. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

The Best of the Rubble Collection Vol 1: Psychedelia Vol 1
Voiceprint BAMVP1007CD

It's been a bumper month for obsure compilations at ISMO , thare are 5 - count 'em, 5! This volume, judging by the band names and music features folk who took far too many mind-altering substances in the 60s. Who ever printed the track listings on the back made an awful mistake. They wrote one song as "Going with a luminous nose" when it's actually DONG with a luminous a classic nonsense poem by the great Edward Lear who invented the limerick.

The best track is a psychedelic vertion of Ron Grainer`s ( the musical genius behind such excellent T.V. themes as Dr.Who and Steptoe & Son) The Prisoner. This late 60s S.F series charted the adventures of Number 6, a former secret agent imprisoned in the mysterious "Village" where rogue or undesirable agents are incarcerated. There a succession of number 2s (sounds rude!) try to brake him and learn the secret of why he left the secret service. Number 6 tries an increasingly desperate series of escapes persued by monstrous animate balloons and the unseen number 1. It was a wonderfully paranoid and tense programme that had the viewer really rooting for Number 6. It is second only to Dr. Who as the greatest S.F. series of all time. I digressed a bit there, didn't I? - Sigsworthy ( I am not a number I am a freeman) Craggs.

The Best of the Rubble Collection Vol 2: Rare Pops of the 60s
Voiceprint BAMVP1008CD *

Not bloody rare enough if you ask me. This particular compilation is truly dreadful. 22 track and all of em stink. With songs entitled "The Devil Rides Out" and "Hobo song" (sadly not about Twitchey) you would think this was going to be a good record. These songs might have sounded good 32 years ago if you had taken a lot of drugs, now they're just irritating. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

The Best of the Rubble Collection Vol 3: Psychedelia Vol 2
Voiceprint BAMVP1009C *

It's an odd fact that bands with very way out sounding names who you would think would produce strange, esoteric tracks like Pink Floyd do, in fact turn out twee insufferable cack. This unwritten law is very apparent here. Will "Pregnant Insomnia", "Portabello Explotion" or "The Purge" spin wild, mind warping music with haunting lyrics? Will they bollocks; they would rather sing about wallpaper. Another mistake on the back, they write "exploding gallery" when the song is "Exploding Galaxy". Dull, except for Ron Grainer`s Danger Man theme. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

The Best of the Rubble Colection Vol 4: Love songs of the 60s
Voiceprint BAMVP1010CD

It's late at night I'm tired, this is the fourth of these damm Rubble compilations (all very long ) I've sat through, and I hate love songs. This dose not bode well. Sadly I was 100% correct. I was suprised to see "Nivarna" listed amongst the artists but it soon became apparant it was not the Nirvana. There are only so many times you can say something is crap, dull, shite, not worth spit. I'm knackered and I'm going to bed. Just take my word for it and don't buy this record. - Sigsworthy Craggs.

TWITCHY'S DITCH

Thoughts on life, love and music from Twitchy the Tramp in his tawdry little ditch.

In this issue of ISMO, and especially for the benefit of ISMO subscribers outside the U.K., Twitchy looks at the British upper classes.

The British upper class are outrageously inbred due to centuries of fucking their cousins. This leads to features such as chinlessness, buck teeth, speech inpediments, spinlessness, dearth of morals, and all-round cretinism. They have such enormous amounts of money (despite never doing a stroke of work) and masses of time on their hands that they pursue un-natural pastimes such as fox hunting. Their public school/ boarding school upbringing gives them stomach-churning sexual perversions ("slam my cock in the door again Sir William"). In short these social parasites are a waste of space.

What interest could a decent, respectable tramp such as myself have in such human sewage ( or have I answered my own question there) ? Well the fact is, these farts become so bored with existence that they are always pursuing new hobbies or fashions. The latest vogue is one for designer pets, but having tired of dogs, cats, snakes, endangered birds, and leopards, they are now keeping pet tramps! Yes: faithful gutter-snipes and trusty dossers are now replacing tropical fish and peacocks in the mansions and stately homes of England.

The perks are good: imagine going from sleeping in an unsanitary public convenience and eating stale bread and bacon rind stolen from bird tables to being spoon fed caviar and sleeping on a silken cushion in a sumptuous grange or magnificent hall! There is a slight downside; we have to swallow our pride a little. The toffs are fond of giving us soppy pet names: for example, Creeping Tina has been re-named "Pip-Pops", Nestling Ronald has become "Demelza" and Rootling Gezza is now known as "Mr Pink Whistle". Some have carried this habit to the extreme with what they perceive to be thoroughbred tramps. They have their tramps registered with the "Tramp Club" and get "dung heap" names for them. Mottled Claudia is now " Dabchick-Proudlass of Toytown". Slit-eye now revels in the moniker "Featherhart-Dewdrop Meadowlad". As for me, I'm called "Twitchton-Crystalmane Larkskipper" but my owner (Lady Cynthia Debase-Willams) calls me "Popsidinkums".

They delight in increasing our mortification by taking us for walks on leads in public, complete with jewel-studded collars and platinum name tags. They also organise "tramp shows" where thoroughbred tramps are paraded around in front of judges and awarded prizes. Catagories include the worst smelling, the most filthy, inebriation, and most foul thing eaten. I am proud to announce that I have won several rosettes and cups in the latter category.

Life is good for the moment. The fashion will pass but until then we can stuff our selves on roast duckling and tarmigan in aspic served off a gold dish, and drink champagne at garden parties until we wet ourselves and fall over for the delight and entertainment of the guests. However I must away, gentle reader: Lady Cynthia is calling me for my dish of smoked salmon and bowl of port...

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C O M I N G S O O N...... Twitchy's TV station!

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...IT'S A WRAP...

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