Club Contact

The new MP3 blog from London's club Contact. The idea is to allow people to hear new music they wouldn't have otherwise found but, if anyone has any copyright issues with a particular song, i'll take the link down. Songs are only available for a limited amount of time.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

It's unbearably hot in London this afternoon. On days like this, it's impossible to listen to anything too energetic. Ralph Myerz and the Jack Herren band sound much more appropriate. Despite looking like they should be making skate-punk or nu-metal, the group from Tromso, Norway have a very pleasing line in loungey, Sixties-influenced, Hammond pop. Narrowly avoiding all-out kitsch (they are named after Russ Meyer's cameraman), it's the kind of music you imagine louche DJs playing at impossibly sophisticated discos. Naturally, Casino got a near-weekly outing at Contact.

Ralph Myerz & The Jack Herren Band - Casino

It's probably fair to say that Sukia had no problems with all-out kitch. Taking their title, and much of their inspiration, from a Mexican comic about a lesbian vampire with a rugged assistant called Gary Super Macho, the quartet from LA found brief acclaim in the summer of 1996 with their album Contacto Espacial Con El Tercer Sexo, a sleazy blend of Theremins, Moogs and samples which rarely worked better than on the single The Dream Machine. Should Joss Whedon ever get around to doing a spin-off about El Diablo Robotica, it would be criminal if he didn't get Sukia to soundtrack it.

Sukia - The Dream Machine

Of course, no mention of either lesbian vampires or lounge records would be complete without reference to the almighty Jess Franco - the Spanish director whose films, when rediscovered, triggered the mid-90s boom in musical "exotica". Franco, described by no less an authority than the Pope as one of the most dangerous men in film, could easily churn out a dozen pictures a year to feed Europe's growing exploitation market at the end of the Sixties. Some were good, some were terrible but all were stamped with his unique style. It's impossible to watch a Franco film and not know who it's by (just look out for the zoom shots). Unquestionably, the two finest works in his vast library are Vampyros Lesbos and She Killed In Ecstasy - each a genuinely brilliant (and, believe it or not, rather moving) marriage of arthouse and grindhouse film-making starring the ill-fated Portuguese starlet Soledad Miranda. While the movies may have a limited appeal, the soundtrack sold in vast numbers when reissued by the cult German label Crippled Dick Hot Wax. It's not hard to see why.

Manfred Hubler & Siegfried Schwab - There Is No Satisfaction

Ten years on, the demand for exotic "easy listening" music has almost disappeared, subsumed by the all-conquering "chillout" market. The Hotel Costes series, mixed by French DJ Stéphane Pompougnac and inspired by the eponymous arsey Parisian boutique / bar is easy to deride but they do come up with the occasional decent song. Trinity FM's SOS is a rather nice update of Sound Of Silence.

Trinity FM -SOS


  • At 11:52 pm, Blogger bulldoggy said…

    Hmph! People and their no comments... The Sounds of Silence cover is BRILLIANT :)

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