Friday, December 29, 2017

Fetal Missilry...

Howard Stelzer posted this appreciation of Peach of Immortality's newly issued nine-disc compilation Surrealismus: Paris Prag Rockville earlier today on social media. We are in turn appreciative of his kind words...


If Surrealismus arrived any sooner, it'd be on every worthwhile reviewer's "Best of 2017" list, not that I believe Tom Smith cares about those damned things... I only mention it b/c this monstrosity, in the works for longer than Facebook has existed, is an unquestionably MAJOR thing and you do need to hear it.

It's not even Tom's best work... after 1992, his music grew exponentially in depth/complexity/etc and continues to do so... "best" is a tough distinction to make in the face of ongoing best-ness. However: the music compiled here literally changed my life. If I didn't run into this tanned weirdo making tape loops in Rat Bastard's Miami Beach studio when I was a high school goofball just beginning to ignorantly bang cassettes together, I would not be ignorantly banging cassettes together today.

So what is this? It's a 9xCDR (!!!) set collecting music both released and (more frequently) not by Tom Smith's 80's/90's band Peach of Immortality. Some of it sounds, to 2017/18 ears, a lot like the genres that Smith has since broken free of: noise, improvisation, 'industrial' etc... but the singular blood & passion is audible. Listen to the glorped tape fog in The Baptist Hymnal, REM = Air Supply, Talking Heads '77, or that remarkable 1986 live recording from TT the Bear's Place and tell me that, if you encountered any of it unprepared at 16 years old, your face would not also have melted clean off.

I've told the story before, but it's worth repeating: after uncomprehendingly watching/hearing Tom record some loops taken off a Misfits bootleg in Rat's studio one school-night evening in 1990 or 1991, I asked him what exactly he was doing... his pithy reply: "I'm trying to make a tape deck ROCK". And that, friends, is why I make music now. Buy this album, then listen to the rest of Tom Smith's work to find out what it was merely a prelude to.


Here's a link to the album. Merci, Howard.

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