Available on Bandcamp the PRF Monthly Tribute Series is an ongoing project which challenges musicians to attempt covers of a particular band or artist.  The musicians are given a month to record songs by that band, or about that band, or in the style of the band. In September 2019 the 63rd in the series it was the turn of Captain Beefheart. Situations – Grown So Ugly (3:19) – this track races along as a straightforward rock song rather than following the blues of the original Doctor Coffee – Dropout Boogie (2:42) – a similar arrangement to the SAM track complete with waltz-style break butRead More →

On his Facebook page John French further tries to explain what happened with the recording of the legendary ‘It Comes To You In A Plain Brown Wrapper’ album.   After writing an 864-page book, “Beefheart: Through the Eyes of Magic,” in which I tried my best to accurately “set the record straight” on many of the myths and misunderstandings that have collectively swirled and snowballed down the hill of legends into the confused form-a-heap ( yes, I’m using that phrase from Bill’s Corpse from TMR) it is today, I still find the number one thing people seem to keep scattering misinformation about is Strictly Personal,Read More →

C Cat Trance Orange Claw Hammer 2005 UK CD Karadara – Best Of on Cherry Red Records CDMRED280 This cover was recorded some time ago by John Rees Lewis, singer/sax player with the band Medium Medium, who were part of the punk/funk scene along with A Certain Ratio, 23 Skidoo and Rip Rig & Panic in the 1980s. The band cited Beefheart as an influence although Lewis was the bigger fan. It was with his next band, C Cat Trance, that he recorded Orange Claw Hammer to which he added “a bassline and stuff to it”, for an album that didn’t get released because the record company, Red Flame, folded. Unofficial cassettes ofRead More →

One of those real collectors’ items for the Beefheart fan. Track List Side One Electricity (version 4) Electricity (version 5) Plastic Factory (version 2) Grown So Ugly (version 3) Where There’s Woman (version 2) Side Two Yellow Brick Road (version 2) Aba Saba [sic] (version 2) Autumn’s Child (version 2) Sure Enough[sic] (version 2) At some point during the recording of Safe As Milk, an acetate was pressed with various versions of some of the album’s songs. Was it for the band or the producers .. or someone else? Were these tracks seen as the (almost) finished versions and committing them to disc was one way of helping makeRead More →

Song list Disc 1 County Coliseum, El Paso, 23 May 1975 Introduction Improvisation Apostrophe Stinkfoot I`m Not Satisfied Carolina Hardcore Ecstasy Velvet Sunrise Pound for a Brown You`re So Fine/Lonely Lonely Nights Debra Kadabra Montana/Improvisations Disc 2 1. Advance Romance 2. Florentine Pogen Daigaku Seibu Kodo, Kyoto, Japan, 4th February 1976 Introduction Stinkfoot Dirty Love Filthy Habits How Could I Be Such A Fool? Ain’t Got No Heart I’m Not Satisfied Black Napkins Overview Another boot of the good quality El Paso Bongo Fury show, similar to the Bongo In Fury in El Paso release. Even less Beefheart involvement here. This time the filler isRead More →

Acetate only release limited to 25 copies Front cover with obi Front cover without obi Disc labels Song list: Side 1: Hair Pie Bake 2 Sugar ‘n Spikes Old Fart At Play My Human Gets Me Blues Dali’s Car Moonlight On Vermont Ella Guru Side 2 When Big Joan Sets Up Hair Pie Bake 2 Steal Softly Thru Snow Hobo Chang Ba Veterans Day Poppy Review by Paul Brown This DELUXE Bootleg LP limited to 25 Copies Only, features live recordings from various venues. the earliest being the “LA Cave” Club in Cleveland Ohio 1971, up to and including two of the album’s stand-out tracksRead More →

Okay, so why am I reviewing a book about Jeff Buckley here on the Radar Station? Well, it’s written by Gary Lucas who had, and still continues to have, a big part to play in the music of Don Van Vliet, and I think, should interest a lot of Beefheart fans. Jawbone Press : London 2013 Paperback 318 pages 22 Illustrations Originally published in Italy in Italian this is an updated English version of Gary’s story of his “time with Jeff Buckley”, in which he wants to correct the many previously published errors about their relationship and to counter the attempts at airbrushing him outRead More →

This isn’t a review of this recent release by Chrome Dreams this is a warning. It’s not a new documentary about the relationship between Don and Frank it’s just a repackaging of the two previous titles “Under Review” and “From Straight to Bizarre” although there is nothing to tell you that on the new package or on the Chrome Dreams website. So if you already have these two DVDs don’t bother wasting money on this release, the new packaging is the only thing new about it. The card box opens up to reveal copies of the earlier DVDs in their original packaging. It smacks ofRead More →