Wednesday, June 19, 2019

V/A - Spondu (1995, N. Meridian)

Bit of a curveball here, but perfect for the wilfully obscure quotient this site so glaringly strives for.  I found this specimen on Ebay last year - a sixteen-artist DIY cassette compilation with a return address of Portland, OR.  It's titled Spondu, and it wouldn't surprise me if it accompanied a fanzine of some sort, but there's really no evidence to support that theory.  No tracklist on the tape sleeve, just a small, purple insert that doesn't elaborate in the slightest about the details of any of the participants.  The only underlying thread evidenced throughout Spondu is a preference for 4-track worshiping, lo-fi finaglers.

Occupying a good share of real estate here are oodles of virtually unknown freak-folk types, savage noiseniks, and even a handful of comparatively song-structured purveyors - just don't expect much in the way of "pop."  Many of this cassette's contributors would have sounded perfectly at home on such imprints of the day as Shimmy Disk and Shrimper, and for those of you in the audience that subscribed to the aesthetics of say, Sentridoh you're sure to unearth a nugget or two.  Richmond Fontaine's "White Line Fever,"is the runaway winner here - a spare but ballsy ballad a la Uncle Tupelo.  I also had fun with Shiny Beast's nimble, hard-boiled instrumental "Squirrel Fur Coat," and Sidecar's early-Nirvana worship.

01. Tercio Polo Vonrui Robot - My Mame is Xar
02. Pedro - Peeping Tom
03. Monston VCR - Slumber Party
04. Sidecar - Got the Words
05. Lamy Can Kill - Airport Road
06. Richmond Fontaine - White Line Fever
07. Santiago - No Sunshine
08. Shiny Beast - Squirrel Fur Coat
09. Fit Port Danga - Flying the Colors/I Can't Turn You Loose
10. Mag Wheels - Xylophone Hovers
11. Jenna - Sandstorm
12. The Glacial Rift of the Frost Giant Jarl - Our Swords Are Thirsty
13. Magic Happens - Master of Sleep Tai Chi
14. National Rockombo - Hobre Soltero
15. (The Gob) - Comin' Round the Bend
16. Karen Reitzel - Hot Cross George

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