• ariel pink Early Live Recordings: Gorilla / Appleasians (double CD, £6.25)

    Haunted Graffiti wasn’t the first time a bedroom-cloistered Ariel Pink revolutionised his own sound and persona by taking to the stage with a band. The creator of last year’s re-issued Thrash & Burn – a psycho-delic sketchbook of vibes so sequestered as to be damn near claustrophobic in their intimacy – concurrently kept more than a few bands going in the late 90’s - early 00’s. Two of those projects our dear listener will find compiled here: “Gorilla” and “Appleasians”. This two-disc archival restoration was salvaged from the same scratch pile of crumbling CDr's and 8-track cassettes as Thrash & Burn. Given a thorough mastering treatment, this collection makes a fitting conceptual counterpart to Thrash & Burn, while shedding some much-needed light on the origins of Pink's mystifying, often volatile stage persona. More than just an academic study, "Early Live Recordings" holds gems like the hooky “Tractor Man” the chugging “Inside Looking Out” or a stunningly efficient cover of The Shaggs' "He's Still My Cutie" – which could easily be contenders for some of Pink's most effective pop moments. W hat’s more fascinating than the myriad web of mutated punk, garage, noise and pop references quoted throughout this compilation's music, lyrics and track titles, is how the breadth and scope of Pink’s nods to the brutalist phalanx of his heroes seems to suggest that the rawness of these early tracks comes not from Pink’s musical nascence, but rather, may indicate an altogether more calculated affair. And for all its dingy, campy chaos, "Early Live Recordings" bubbles with a fidgety, juvenile undercurrent – take for example the pre-adolescent blasé of “Farewell Goodbye”, or the "By the Powers of Grayskull" in which a puerile-seeming He-Man cartoon refrain looms over a Nietzschean dis track. Which isn’t to say that Ariel was a kid when he made these recordings. He seems to be embracing the role of a faux naif in order to map out the prodigality of his later, signature recordings. (Those recordings, "The Doldrums", "House Arrest" and "W orn Copy", followed by just a few years, if not months.) These recordings are not just sonic experiments gone mad, but studies for an attitude, preparations of a vocabulary of acting and acting out that would become key components of Pink’s infamous on- and off-stage personae. DISC ONE TRACKLIST: 01/ Berzerker 02/ Logan's Run 03/ Chunga 04/ El Fantastic Summer Part 1 05/ Lila Lay 06/ Die He Die 07/ I'm Burning Up 08/ Why Am I So Sad 09/ Nazi Love 10/ Darby's Revenge 11/ Not Her Home Yet 12/ I Sold My Soul 13/ Dancing in the Darkness 14/ Zip Drive 15/ By the Powers of Grayskull 16/ Damo's CD 17/ Funeral in an Aircraft 18/ Farewell Goodbye DISC TWO TRACKLIST: 01/ Tractor Man 02/ Inside Looking Out 03/ Something In Your Eye 04/ Nana 05/ Crusades 06/ Don't Turn Back 07/ Who Has Scene The Ween 08/ Nana Reprise 09/ My Cutie 10/ I Lied To Her 11/ Shelly Come Out Tonite 12/ Don't Turn Back 13/ In The Dungeon 14/ Inside Looking Out 15/ The Appleasians 16/ Art Life 17/ Red Scare 18/ 2008

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