You, me, the music, and me.

Thursday, March 16, 2006


Celluloid CELL 5002 (1983)

I picked this up very recently at a new store in town called the Oryx; if you live in the Saint John area, it's located on Prince William Street just past Melvin's* or whatever that bar on the corner is called now. It's a nice, friendly little shop that specializes in used books, records, and CD's, and it seems to contain every album by every band I ever listened to in college. In other words, if the owners have kids, I'm the one who's going to be putting them through college.

The Golden Palominos are an ever-changing ensemble of musicians from all walks of musical life led by drummer Anton Fier. Though their later albums would skew toward the alt-pop and country-rock ends of genre classification, this, their debut, was firmly entrenched in the New York avant garde of the early eighties.

The most prominent players on the album include former DNA/Ambitious Lovers frontman Arto Lindsay on strangulated vocals and guitar, Fred Frith on guitar and violin, John Zorn on saxophone and duck calls, and Bill Laswell on bass. Its Fier's vision which dominates, though; his drums (both acoustic and electric) are what drive tracks like "Hot Seat", with its furious wails and disembodied vocals churning over Fier's DMX beats, or "Under the Cap", with Lindsay's yodels riding the churning percussion like a bucking bronco. "Cookout" features an early example of record-scratching (courtesy of Roger Trilling) and "I.D." rides along on Laswell's funky fretless bass, giving the album a "dance-party-on-Mars" vibe.

The Golden Palominos will appeal to fans of projects led by Zorn, Lindsay, and Laswell; it's avant-garde, it's got a good beat, and you can dance to it.

*UPDATE: the bar is called Elwood's. My bad.


At 1:05 PM, Blogger Mark Desmet said...

I love your Blog. Yes, I am a Golden Palominos fan as well. Let me suggest "Pure", and "This Is How It Feels" as standout Palominos discs. Keep up the good work!

At 10:51 AM, Blogger Peter MacDonald said...

Thank you very much!


Post a Comment

<< Home