Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Soul Food & Show # 411

The debut album from The Oblivians was released in 1995 on Crypt Records. Soul Food was the world’s introduction to the Memphis, Tennessee Garage Punk band The Oblivians and the album just swelters with Garage, Punk and Soul heat. Recorded at Easley Studios in Memphis, Soul Food is a 32 minute blast of pure primal Rock and Roll. Executed in the vein of The Cramps, Tay Falco's Panther Burns, and bands such as The Gories, The Sonics and The Stooges, it is an album that refuses to adhere to stereotype, the unbridled Punk Rock infused Garage sound is of an unrelenting, intense chaotic nature. The band is comprised of Jack Oblivian (real name Jack Yarber), Eric Oblivian (real name Eric Friedl) , and Greg Oblivian (real name Greg Cartwright), who adopted a similar last name paying tribute to Ramones. The band would switch instruments and alternate between drums, guitars and vocals. There were no bassists in the Oblivians, just two guitars, drums, and vocals, the band would also alternate instruments live and in the studio.

The album opens with a cover of “Vietnam War Blues”, originally by Lightnin’ Hopkins it is pure fuzzed out boogie Rock and Roll, “Jim Cole” is a repetitive song, just over a minute with heavy organ, guitar stabs and the same lyrics repeated over and over again for about a minute, “Never Change” is a mellower track, but one that oozes with soul and intensity similar to something found a Compulsive Gamblers record, Greg Oblivians other band. It is a simple, but effective track that clearly emphasises the bands motto. “I’m Not A Sicko, There’s A Plate In My Head” is an Oblivians original that sounds like The Cramps meets the Flat Duo Jets, while “Blew My Cool” grooves with Garage riffs and shouting vocals.

Soul Food is an album produced with a bare bones production technique, and has that live off the floor feel. You can even hear the band talking and counting off numbers, especially before “Never Change”, which as stated earlier emphasizes their motto with the lyrics, “I’ll never change for you not for twenty dollars, not for twenty two/like a broken record I play the same sad song, if I ever fix it I’ll probably still be wrong”, The Oblivians did things their way, and Soul Food is an explosive, raunchy, offensive, but good hearted record, complete with mistakes and imperfection and primalistic rhythms. Although it may be an acquired taste for some, it is a record that’s hard to ignore. After two more full length albums Popular Favorites, Play Nine Songs With Mr. Quintron and several singles/EPs, the band called it quits and its members moved on to other things. Jack and Greg reformed their previous band The Compulsive Gamblers before going their separate ways, Jack to Jack O & The Tennessee Tearjerkers, Greg to Reigning Sound and other bands. Eric went on to form Goner Records as well as playing with Dutch Masters and The True Sons of Thunder in addition to recording an album with Jay Reatard and other musiciang. It was announced recently that The Oblivians are working on a new full length album, that will be released on In The Red Records.

This Week's Play List:

1. Elk – Riverview
2. The New Strychnines – High Time
3. Pete Van Dyk & The Secondhand Band – Canadian Boy
4. Hab – Sedentary Blues
5. Bloodshot Bill – Right Out The Door
6. The Almighty Defenders – All My Loving
7. Deja Voodoo – Private Eye
8. The Gruesomes – 3 Men 1 Coffin
9. Testors – Together
10. Klark Kent – Office Girls
11. XTC – Science Friction
12. The Stranglers – (Get A) Grip (On Yourself)
13. Rotten Tropics – New Miserablist
14. Pomegranates – Ezekiel
15. The Fall – Repetition
16. Captain Scarlet & The Mysterons - Are You Really Gone
17. The Mongrols - Plastic Girl
18. The Wipers – Let’s Go Away
19. The Caesars – We Got To Leave
20. Simply Saucer – Dance The Mutation
21. Oblivians – Vietnam War Blues
22. Oblivians – Jim Cole
23. Oblivians – Blew My Cool
24. The Cramps - Good Taste (Live)
25. Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers – Let Go (Demo)
26. Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers - Born To Lose (Demo)

To download this weeks program, visit CJAM's schedule page for Revolution Rock and download the file for July 3. Or subscribe to Revolution Rock as a Podcast.


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