Reviewed by Music/Program Director Brian Turner

BOB HUND Stendaldern Kan Borja (Silence)
While the 90's Swedish indie rock contingent opted to go for international fame with English language-oriented music, Bob Hund stayed steadfastly true to their Stockholm roots, putting out all of its music in its native tongue. Though, as of recent they have opted for some UK and US dates under the decidedly Anglo-friendly monicker Bergman Rock, even singing in English. Kind of too bad, considering the English tranlsation of Bob Hund is "Bob the Dog", infinitely a better name. But now, they have done yet another about-face, and have released their latest record once again in Swedish. Well, needless to say, we have no idea what Bob Hund is singing about, but the music is some truly joyful indie rock that shouldn't stop English-speaking labels from getting them a damned deal already. Definitely taking cues from Pavement, the Velvets, Kraftwerk, and Pere Ubu (whom were covered some years ago with a Swedish version of "Final Solution" on an earlier Bob Hund EP), there's some great buzzing melodies, layers of guitar and synths that surge at all the right moments. And their logo, a dog smoking a pipe, probably is the best band logo since that Blue Oyster Cult thingie, I hope they use it on their drumhead.

MERI VON KLEINSMID Chi-Tape (American Archive Recordings)
KLAUS KINSKI Listen To Me, and Obey, Dogs: The Spoken Word Klaus Kinski Compendium (No Label)
Meri is a member of a loose Seattle experimental music collective known as SoniCabal, and here presents a stunning and strange audio document of the Windy City. Comprised of cheap cassette recordings from 1991, Chi-Tape is an audio tour of some rich and diverse sounds: warbling piano gospel, fiery distorted preaching, radio ads, PSAs and more. Religious ravings spliced back to back with KC & the Sunshine Band off the radio into polka into funeral home ads makes for some schizoid listening, indeed. If you arrive into a brain-clouded state, perfect time to then throw on this spoken-word collection of the late German actor Klaus Kinski, culled from various speeches (including his famous "I Am Jesus" tour shown in the "My Best Fiend" documentary about Kinski's volatile relationship with filmmaker Werner Herzog). It's all in German, but Klaus' trebly, weedy, and barking vocal demeanor is sound art within itself up there with the best Erik Belgum or Henri Chopin stuff. His "Schwarze Puppen" is filled with the tension of him about to break out barking at someone in his hapless radius. I need a drink now.

COMETS ON FIRE s/t (Comets on Fire)
This South Bay Area outfit rocks like holy demons, and features one member of the great Lowdown. Massive, pounding lo-fi spazz rock action with heavy riffage ala MC5, distorted vocals ala the Jon Spencer In the Red 45s, and someone with an echoplex pedal that will not let up on freaky oscillation sounds. It's pretty non-stop and unrelenting, and just when you are winding down at the end of side B, they slip in an unlisted total destructo-version of "Back In the USSR." Totally great!

VARIOUS U-Sound Volume One (Parallelism)
The weekly live shindigs at the Pink Pony in 1999 were a real brightspot on the NYC music scene, so I have a very lame excuse for missing what was a great snapshot in downtown NYC sound. But what with the dog's MENSA club meetings and my Origami class at the New School, I just wasn't able to get down there, my loss bigtime. The shows, organized by Jackie O Motherfucker's Tom Greenwood, offered a haven for his pals from Tower Recordings, Prick Decay, Hall of Fame and other NYC and non-NYC free-thinkers, and the result is a stunning 2CD document that's going to turn people on for years to what seems to be the logical sequel to the ESP-related activity in 1960s downtown NYC. Even Michael Hurley stops by for a ghostly guitar recital surrounded by his new friends, and genius blower Daniel Carter's lead amongst the group here is among the most amazing performances I've heard from him. There's some electronic abuse from Glands of Eternal Secretion, lonely psychedelia from Double Leopards, cosmic folk from Joshua Burkett, and much more. A really superb series of shows that I again club myself repeatedly for missing....duh.

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