Welcome To The Curios

The Curios have been gathered from near and far. They may be common-as-muck or one-of-a-kind. They may be worth a pretty penny or a dime-a-dozen. They may be horrifying, captivating, loathsome, or scintillating.

Whatever the cause of their creation, hopefully they bring enjoyment to someone out there.


Meat For The Beast - Halloween Compilation '09

(cover photo by urbandavepics, found through Google Image Search)

Last year, inspired by some of my favourite blogs, I posted a Halloween compilation.

I wasn't going to do one this year, but then I saw some really dull compilations floating around the net (none from my favourite blogs, though, they all do stellar work). I mean, Boris Pickett's 'Monster Mash'??? Are you serious??? I swear, as soon as I see that on a Halloween compilation I know that the compiler has put no thought into it whatsoever.

I knew I could do better.

So here it is:

Meat For The Beast - Halloween '09

1. Danny Elfman - Meat For The Beast - from the Nightbreed score, and also a line from the film's dialogue. I love this film. Clive Barker did a great job in evoking a beautiful world in Midian. I'd love to see the extended cut, should it ever surface on DVD/blu-ray. It seems the film also affected someone else, because the photo used for the cover of this comp was taken in a tunnel in Glasgow, and features the character Peloquin, who speaks the line in the film.

2. Alice Cooper - Years Ago - My parents split up when I was quite young. I lived with my mother, but would often stay at my father's house. Dad had the better record collection of the two, and it included Alice Cooper's 'Welcome To My Nightmare'. I still think it's an amazing album, and this song, along with 'Steven' and 'The Awakening', are truly brilliant.

3. Roky Erickson & The Aliens - I Think Of Demons - I could've chosen any number of Roky's tracks, but I decided on one that I haven't seen as often on Halloween comps.

4. The Plasmatics - The Damned - Wendy O Williams = WOW. The video clip for this track also = WOW (see below).

5. Pop Will Eat Itself - Nightmare at 20'000Ft - Inspired by a Twilight Zone episode, and singer Clint Mansell's fear of flying. I recently saw the beginning of Final Destination, in which the lead character envisions himself in a plane to France that explodes in mid-air. I'll be heading to France next year. I've decided that I'm going by train.

6. My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult - A Daisy Chain 4 Satan - The song title comes from a 1950 novel of the same name (with 'For' being spelt correctly), by British pulp mystery writer Joan Fleming. I didn't know that. Thanks, Wikipedia!

7. Genghis Tron - Board Up The House - I'm not a huge fan of screamo type vocals, but Genghis Tron make them work so damn well, and they complement the amazing instrumentation. This is the title track from their 2008 release, the cover of which always makes me think of Evil Dead, as seen by Van Gogh.

8. Claudio Simonetti - Demon [Original Demo Version 1985] - I still haven't the film this is from yet, but it's sitting on my shelf, just waiting for the right moment. Maybe the right moment is this Halloween...

9. Einstürzende Neubauten - Halber Mensch - No Halloween is complete without a creepy Gregorian-esque chant. Also, has an uber-creepy video clip (see below).

10. Julee Cruise - Into The Night - The scariest song ever written. Angelo Badalamenti & David Lynch are Cruise's co-conspirators on this piece from Lynch's Twin Peaks era. I've recently started watching Twin Peaks from the beginning, only having ever caught snatches of it when it originally aired in Australia. It terrified me then, it terrifies me now.

11. Nina Simone - Pirate Jenny - From Kurt Weill & Bertholt Brecht's The Threepenny Opera, the song was originally called 'Seeräuberjenny', and only through the tranlsation into English did the ominous 'Black Freighter' get introduced to the lyrics (again: thanks, Wikipedia!). That doesn't change the fact that this foreboding ship and its terrible crew are about to slaughter the entire town. This was the basis for Alan Moore's 'Tales of the Black Freighter' supplement in the Watchmen series, and also makes an oblique appearance in Moore's 'League of Extraordinary Gentlemen' series (I knew that of my own accord, but thank you anyway, Wikipedia). Also: Nina Simone = freakin' AWESOME.

12. The Cramps - Big Black Witchcraft Rock - Again, I could've chosen any track from The Cramps catalogue, but I decided on something a bit more recent. RIP, Lux, I was very saddened when you left.

13. Gein & The Graverobbers - Transylvania - A cover of an instrumental by Iron Maiden, in a 'horror surf' style. Niiiiiiiiiice. I got this from The Manchester Morgue's 'I Got Erection' compilation.

14. Siouxsie & The Banshees - Candyman - I'll confess, I'm a big wimp when it comes to horror films. I can't stand surprises and my imagination oftens gets the better of me when left alone. The film Candyman scared me when I first saw it (about 15 years ago) and I refused to use the toilet down the end of a dark hallway immediately after the film. If you've seen the film, you'll know why.

15. Tom Servo (Mystery Science Theater 3000) - My Creepy Girl - Taken from the MST3K version of 'Catalina Caper', a diabolical piece of teen fluff from 1967. This inclusion of this track is particularly significant to me, as I will be going to a Halloween party as a Joel/Mike hybrid this year. I bought myself a green jumpsuit, and found a Gizmonics patch on eBay. If I could make the bots, I would, but I just don't have the requisite skills or those special parts. Fellow MSTies are encouraged to check out The Manchester Morgue (again!), because the curator, phelpster, will often put up full episodes, and other oddities, such as the Clowns In The Sky compilation.

16. The Count (Sesame Street) - The Batty Bat - Recently, Mr Fab, curator of Music For Maniacs, featured the album I compiled, The Dead Trilogy, which I was overjoyed to see. Also on that page was a write-up for Mashup Industries' Halloween '09 Mashup album, Mashed 'n' Slashed (to be in the same company of the likes of LeeDM101, Voicedude, and Clive$ter, what an honour!!!). DjNoNo samples the Batty Bat on his 'Batty Dub', so I thought it fitting that I post the original.

17. The Moontrekkers - Night Of The Vampire - Not a cover of the Roky Erickson classic, but a brilliant instrumental, produced by the legendary Joe Meek.

18. Geto Boys - Chuckie - The Bushwicken & co. namecheck the infamous killer doll. "You'd better murder me/Put me to rest/Cause if you don't, I'll come out shootin/With my head in a bird's chest"... Um.... what?

19. Necro - Beautiful Music For You To Die - You don't like listening to Death Rap? Well, I do. This was the first Necro track I heard, and it's still my favourite.

20. Oingo Boingo - Skin - Oingo Boingo fans will know what this track is doing here. And hopefully they will be able to help: in the film, Nightbreed, a 'countrified' version of Skin is playing when Lori... well, I won't spoil it. That version was performed by Michael Stanton, but I'll be damned if I can find that track anywhere on the net! I used to have a copy a few years back, but lost it in a hard drive crash. If anyone out there can help me out by pointing me in the right direction of a copy, I'd be eternally grateful.

11 Mar 10 - UPDATE!!! Porn Clerk from the awesome blog, Scene Kids In Pain, was kind enough to link me to a copy of the soundtrack, complete with the Michael Stanton track, both at the Curios and on the SKIP blog (read the comments sections)! Thanks, Porn Clerk! Also, on the SKIP page, you'll find an extra bonus in the form of the film itself!

Thanks for indulging me, and have a happy Halloween, everyone!



Wall of Voodoo

Well, I've featured Stan Ridgway and Andy Prieboy, it's only fair that I feature the band that they both fronted, Ridgway from 77-83, Prieboy from 83-88 (if their wikipedia entry is to be trusted).

I was going to put the whole lot up as one big post, but at some point I must've changed my mind... Which is fine, but it's left me with nothing to say...

I owe a great deal to one particular album that opened my eyes to Wall of Voodoo: 'On the Charts: I.R.S. Records 1979-1994', which I picked up in a 2nd-hand record store, on the strength of 'Far Side of Crazy', which appeared as a bonus track on the version I have. And in looking for the link on Amazon, I've found that my version varies quite significantly from the one listed there.

Excuse me while I digress for a moment.

The compilation on Amazon's tracklisting is as follows:

1. Our Lips Are Sealed - Go-Go's
2. Mexican Radio (edit) - Wall of Voodoo
3. Only A Lad - Oingo Boingo
4. The Future's So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades - Timbuk 3
5. Save It For Later - English Beat
6. She Drives Me Crazy - Fine Young Cannibals
7. Mad About You - Belinda Carlisle
8. Tenderness - General Public
9. The One I Love - R.E.M.
10. Joey - Concrete Blonde
11. Rain In The Summertime - The Alarm
12. Dizz Knee Land - dada

The version I have in front of me right now has the following tracks:

1. Our Lips Are Sealed - Go-Go's
2. Mexican Radio (edit) - Wall of Voodoo
3. 68 Guns - The Alarm
4. The Future's So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades - Timbuk 3
5. Spirit In The Sky - Dr. And The Medics
6. Heartbreaker (At The End Of Lonely Street) (edit) - Dread Zeppelin
7. Camouflage (single remixe edit) - Stan Ridgway
8. Mad About You - Belinda Carlisle
9. Hey Matthew - Karel Fialka
10. The One I Love - R.E.M.
11. Joey - Concrete Blonde
12. Holy Cow - Jools Holland
13. Dizz Knee Land - dada
14. Far Side of Crazy - Wall of Voodoo (unlisted)

How very strange. That's quite a deviation. I can't seem to find any mention of my version anywhere on the net at all. If anyone has any further information, I'd love to hear from you.

Okay, back to the matter at hand:

I know it's a bit of a cop-out for me to post two of their most famous songs, but I'm hoping that people feeling nostalgic and looking for those particular tracks and will be inspired to take a closer look.

Here's what looks like the 'official site', but it seems to be currently under construction.

With Stan:

Wall of Voodoo - Lost Weekend
Wall of Voodoo - Mexican Radio

With Andy:

Wall of Voodoo - (Don't Spill My) Courage
Wall of Voodoo - Far Side of Crazy


Royal Flushes

Without a doubt, one of my favourite places in Adelaide is the Antique Market on Grote St.

Recently, I've been trying to save money for an overseas jaunt, and as such, have resisted the urge to visit the Market for quite some time. However, this weekend just gone, my girlfriend was hunting down some clothes for a costume party, and we found ourselves there.

I'd found some books that I was interested in (which will be scanned and posted onto the blog in due time) and just as I was about to leave, I spotted a deck of girlie playing cards that had been there since my last visit, almost a year previous. I didn't buy them the first time around, as I had already blown my budget, but this time I couldn't overlook the fact that they'd remained in exactly the same spot, just waiting for me.

Over time, I will post the full deck, but to begin, here is the packaging and jokers:


Stan Ridgway

(photo from www.stanridgway.com)

Turnabout is fair play.

A couple of months ago, I posted an entry with a few tracks from Andy Prieboy, and I intended to follow it up promptly with a post featuring another former Wall of Voodoo frontman, Stan Ridgway.

So here it is, albeit somewhat later than intended.

There's something about Ridgway's voice that evokes the very essence of Americana, whether he's singing about burlesque houses ('Can't Stop The Show'), jaded couples ('Lost Weekend') or heavy machinery ('Pile Driver').

Ridgway is a king of narrative, and he joins the pantheon of great storytellers, alongside Tom Waits, Warren Zevon and Henry Wagons.

Official site

Stan Ridgway - Running With The Carnival
Stan Ridgway - The Big Heat
Stanard Ridgway & The Fowler Brothers - The Cannon Song (Kurt Weill)

The piano break in this song just kills me. So simple and so effective.