Review: Captain Beefheart – Rarest Previously Unreleased Vinyl

Thanks to Groucho Kangaroo we are able to post this warning to all Beefheart fans about this latest vinyl atrocity.

Captain Beefheart: “The Rarest Previously Unreleased 1970s Live And Studio Tracks”
Ozit-Morpheus / Dandelion Records, LP, 2013

Ozit - rarest unreleased vinyl

Side 1:
1. Steal Softly Through Snow – obviously not the Magic Band, newly recorded?
2. I Wanna Find A Woman… – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
3. Hair Pie Bake – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
4. Golden Birdies – BEAT CLUB session for Radio Bremen, Bremen, April 12th 1972
5. Space Age Couple – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
6. I Love You, You Big Dummy – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
7. I’m Gonna Booglarize You Baby – BEAT CLUB session for Radio Bremen, Bremen, April 12th 1972 w/ fake intro
8. Woe Is Uh Me Bop – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
9. Bellerin’ Plain – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970

Side 2:
1. One Red Rose That I Mean – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
2. When Big Joan Sets Up – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
3. The Clouds Are Full Of Wine – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
4. Click Clack – BEAT CLUB session for Radio Bremen, Bremen, April 12th 1972 w/ fake intro
5. Earth Angel – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
6. Doctor Dark – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970
7. Peon – Pepperland Ballroom, San Rafael, Sept. 18th 1970

In the usual Ozit-way this LP has no information on the venues or exact recording dates. But looking at the track list of this LP you may think: “Oh, this looks like the Pepperland-tape from 1970 – it would be cool to have this on vinyl – it’s the Ozit-people, hmmm, but maybe I could give it a try.”

But be warned: The live-tracks actually are from the Pepperland-tape but the honks at Ozit managed to reduce the sound quality radically. As you may know the Pepperland tape is an amateurish but well balanced recording – one can hear all the instruments and the Captain’s voice comes through quite nicely. In old tape trading categories the original tape (and the massively circulating CD-R version) would be around B. The sound on the Ozit-LP is a muddy affair with a massive amount of hiss (that wasn’t on the original tape). At times the vocals are nearly totally buried in the hiss. How did they do that? The quality on the LP would be C-.

Another irritating aspect of this LP is the muddle up of studio and live recordings. The Ozit-people have torn apart and edited the original tape (as they have done before with the Kidderminster-recording). One result of this is that all the announcements before the songs are missing, which is a shame.

But the real criminal acts were done to the “studio” tracks. These are mostly taken from the recently released BEAT CLUB sessions (“The Lost Broadcasts” on DVD). To conceal the real source of the material the Ozits have added some newly (?) recorded fake intros to the original recordings – for example: you get about twenty seconds of the Click-Clack-riff before “Click Clack” actually starts – it’s really pathetic. The same was done to “I’m Gonna Booglarize You Baby” – and “Steal Softly Through Snow” completely sounds like the fake intros (so one may assume that nobody of any Magic Band was involved in this one).

Altogether this is clearly another case of Ozitis – an illness that can befall Beefheart recordings and kill them – if you’re not a complete vinyl fanatic, please steer clear of this LP.

Groucho Kangaroo

3 Comments

  1. Cheers Groucho!
    You saved us from another big throwback. Sounds like the Ozits will never get it right but what astounds me is that they’re obviously not even trying! As a result, no Beefheart fan in their right mind would enjoy the ozitised stuff and… probably nobody else either. So what’s the point of all the mindless releases from the house of Ozit, really, when there’s not even money to be made? One might suspect a great conspiracy going on for years. But who is behind that and why are they doing this to the Captain? Will we ever know…?

  2. Amen! 3 months ago in a distant shop I was steered to a $32 LP in 180 gs. “The rarest” and would go well with my fairly complete Beefheart library. I was home before I saw it was a “boot” and not authorized and I would never buy that! That is ‘on me’. The only relief from guilt came when I played it on some pretty sophisticated gear and it sounded like crap. Every comment in the review with 400 watts a channel to bring it home. I am 72 years old tomorrow and this is the worst single record I have ever bought or owned. My next trip to the area and I plan to give it back. I do not want a refund. I just want it out of my studio. Thanks and great review!

    Richard

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *