lunedì 31 dicembre 2012

New Year Special - The legend of gaznevada!

Gaznevada represented "the real & only new thing in Italy" in the last 40 years. For those who still do not know anything about them, it was more or less 1979... after the unfamous Bologna Rock Contests they signed a contract with the indie label "Italian records" formerly Harpo’s Music, hosting the likes of Skiantos, Windopen, Sorella maldestra, Luti Chroma, Confusional Quartet, The Stupid Set etc.  They worked with this company until 1984. Their sound was strongly influenced by Contortions, Ramones, Velvet Underground, Talking heads and Brian Eno. They had songs, irony & rage. No need to say more. When nowadays I listen to their "Pornovisione" track from their first Harpo's demos I still believe they're incredible! Imagine that in those years they were playing live in clubs and italian rock contests between melodic bands like I Cugini di Campagna & Homo Sapiens (!!!), more or less the best bands in Italy at the time. They vrtually had no public at the time. But their underground legend grew and Gaznevada became the first post punk cult band with fans all over Italy. Then the sound of the band changed to be too commercial and they lost soon their real identity... but this is another story. Gaznevada's absolute legendary and classic live tapes are very rare nowadays. This my gift for the new year, two old rotten recordings that incredibly survived the time as their legend...

sabato 1 dicembre 2012

where did the ordinary people go?

Everybody knows that XTC are loved by fans, musicians and critics. Like many others they were such a terribly overlooked band as they've produced some of the best pop music ever written. Exceptional song-writing and arrangements, sounds so easy and out of time and even their stage fright just adds to the mystique. On 2 April 1982, a Friday night, XTC were scheduled to play at the Santa Monica Civic Theater in Santa Monica, California, but did not appear. The audience milled about the open festival floor for a long 45 minutes/hour after opening act Oingo Boingo departed the stage, and then finally it was announced that XTC would not take the stage due to the "illness" of one of the band members (later revealed as Andy Partridge's ongoing fight with stage fright in Chris Twomey's book XTC: Chalkhills and Children). XTC never played another tour date. We are still missing them so much! Please hear them once again playing live with Barry Andrews at the peak of their powers, here recorded for BBC Radio 1 and broadcast on 25 March 1978...had we today bands of this level?