This is Sidecar. Stories, cultural recommendations, ephemera. Do you appreciate our weekly show on Sirius/XM, the Transmissions podcast, The Lagniappe Sessions—where your favorite artists cover their favorite artists—and our deep dive interviews, monthly radio broadcast on Dublab, mixtapes, and audio/visual joints? Support us on Patreon to take part in it all happening.
Welcome back to the stacks. It’s Aquarium Drunkard’s Book Club, our monthly gathering of recent (or not so recent) recommended reading. Your librarians this month are Justin Gage, Nereya Otieno, and Kyle Fortinsky, exploring books on music, Black feminism, solitude, and the one and only Lou Reed.
Banging gongs and setting the controls for the heart of the sun. Captured on a very nice audience tape from 1970 at Leeds University, this is the Floyd at their most epic and spacey: six songs in just under 90 minutes. Lumbering jams, funereal keyboards, searing lead guitar, harrowing screeches. The good stuff.
Most known for his searing 1971 anthem “I Pity The Country”—which sadly still remains so incredibly poignant and relevant—that opens the monumental Native North America, Vol. 1: Aboriginal Folk, Rock, and Country 1966–1985 compilation, the trailblazing Indigenous singer-songwriter, activist, filmmaker, and politician Willie Dunn finally gets his due. with Creation Never Sleeps, Creation Never Dies, an anthology pulls from his four full-length records, alongside rare and unreleased material.
Cool Swede Pugh Rogefeldt dropped his debut full-length Ja, Dä Ä Dä! in 1969. Kicking off with an absolutely filthy drum break (“Love, Love, Love”), the record finds Rogefeldt transmuting all manner of rock, pop, raga, folk and soul. Sung in his native Swedish, the 10 track record is seamlessly duct taped together by Rogefeldt’s percussive vocals and syncopated howls, grunts, and exaltations.
John Fahey: resurrected once again. This 1967 soundboard recording, discovered among lost readings by beatnik poets Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder, is the oldest recorded solo concert from the acoustic guitar innovator.
Formed in 1968, Taste of Blues is a psych-prog-blues-rock amalgam fronted by Claes Ericsson, who later founded the ’70s jazz/fusion outfit, Lotus. As a project, the group first crossed our radar via a motorik mix a pal used to spin comprised of what he deemed proto-CAN. Curious? Whet your appetite via the multifarious “Schizofrenia” clocking in at a cool 17 minutes. Headphones recommended.
A weird beast twisted in the very best sense, Elsewhere Junior 1: A Collection of Cosmic Children's Songs is an hypnagogic assemblage finds its curator (Belgian dj, soFa) mining a disparate trove of curios from around the globe. Aesthetically eclectic, the set maintains a loosely connected through-line, one that equally embraces a German children’s choir, dumpster synths, nascent drum machines, and 8-bit madness.
Our guest on the latest episode of Transmissions is Martin Courtney of Real Estate. The long running New Jersey band recently released a new EP, Half a Human, which embraces the jammier side of the band and continues the stylistic explorations of 2020’s The Main Thing. We discussed record stores, adjusting to life without live music, Twin Peaks, and Courtney’s 2015 solo album Many Moons—and its forthcoming follow up.
In 1972 Stack Waddy’s second and final effort, Bugger Off!, posed the question “could ‘Willie The Pimp’ really get any nastier?”, and then proceeded to answer it with an emphatic, phlegmy, “yes.” Proto-punk in form and approach, the four-piece were signed to John Peel’s Dandelion label, knocking out a pair of lps before calling it in 1973. This is Hot Rats in the garage with paint thinner.
Last year sorta got away from us. You too? How weird. Well, we’re back with more Elevated Rail – a live mixtape series from Joel Berk: "This first 2016 mix begins with the always-incredible Lambchop, presenting a then-new spin on deepcut 'FA-Q'—vocoder-Kurt! Next we have former Chicagoan Tim Rutili reviving his classic Califone project, this time in duo form with the great Joe Westerlund on percussion. 'Psychedelic Supergroup' Heron Oblivion brings the heat, easing into a great jam from Nick Millevoi’s Desertion Trio. Bitchin Bajas & Bonnie 'Prince' Billy then offer a glimpse into a cult I might actually want to join (to paraphrase AD’s Tyler Wilcox), before the Sun Ra Arkestra under the direction of Marshall Allen blasts us to Saturn. Turn on, tune in, space out."