Friday, December 11, 2009


Question: What record starts off making you feel like you are a miner on the face of music? A miner crawling, cramped through a dark passageways, his way lit only by the lamp on his helmet, chipping away a the rock face, a miner who has just struck a thick vein of musical amazingness, the likes of which he didn't think was even possible? What record starts like this and ends sounding like off-cuts from the spit-roast corpse of Emerson, Lake and indeed Palmer?

Answer: See Above.

Or to use an amusement park ride based analogy - Imagine you are on a roller coaster, it climbs to the top of a world beating mile high drop and eventually plunges down taking your innards with it, your gut is in your mouth and it's brilliant! Seventy mile an hour brilliant. And then the roller coaster carries on, flat track no turns, plummets or peaks for another thirty minutes.

By the time the ride is over you have almost forgot the awesomeness of that first hill, that dip into extreme sports radicalness.

So, Brainticket, German band, labelled Krautrock but then let's be honest what isn't? (NB: Actually they are Swiss - Thanks SB) Not bad, female singer, nice chugging prog like instrumentation, soundscape overtones, couple of quirks that remind you in a very good way of the time and place it was recorded. This is the bands second album.

I used to work in a theme park - 6 Flags Great America. It was the Summer of 1996 and I was young and free and I was living in Kenosha Wisconsin (of Happy Days fame). I had an employee pass that meant that I could go to the park for free anytime I wanted to, during the 3 months I was working there I visited that park and it's high-tech thrills and spills rides precisely zero times. Why? Fuck a roller-coaster is why.

Also at the time I had an unhealthy obsession with Star Wars memorabilia as well as records so my off days were spent trawling the toy aisles of Walmart and the like as well as sticking my head around the door of the occasional record store.

Okay, when I say occasional I do recall at least two entire Saturdays spent in the Clarke and Belmont area of Chicago going from store to store, 13" carriers weighing on both my hands. oi wonder if that part of town still stands up? There were, back in the day at least eight records shops within a fifteen minute walk of each other.

Anyway, from what I recall a selection of the contents of those carrier bags would be: the soundtrack to Planet of the Apes, 'Sang Fat Editor' by U.S Maple, the 12" of Black Regent by Add N to X, whatever the Ghost album that had just come out was and at least two albums bought specifically because of Steve Albini's involvement both of which were utterly dull.

As for Brainticket's 'Psychonaut', I bought this recently but there is a weird gap in my memory regarding exactly where from. It was in Germany I know that much.

Funny, something that happened a few weeks back is a total blank but If I close my eyes I can actually smell the hot dog stand at the Cubs stadium and I remember the exact trousers I was wearing 13 years ago. I wonder what happened to those trousers?


  1. Brainticket are Swiss. They wear the trousers.

  2. You see, I'm glad you are here, otherwise I'd quite happily be rewriting popular history.