GOD IS MY CO-PILOT/GAG: Grow Your Own Country Wide Primary School Band EP (7″, Guided Missile GUIDE 003, 1995)

God Is My Co-Pilot/Gag - Grow Your Own Country Wide Primary School Band EP

If you’re keen-eyed, you may spot the remains of a sticker on the front of this record’s sleeve. I tried my best to remove it, I really did, but it was stuck on with some kind of industrial-strength super-super-glue, and what you see that’s left is a pretty good outcome, I can tell you. If you’re very keen-eyed, you may recognise the sticker as the type put on when a record is put up for sale at a branch of the Record & Tape Exchange in London. Criticisms about their choice of sticker aside – why would they choose a type that a geekoid record collector couldn’t easily remove? – I love those shops. I’m not sure how many of them there are, but I’ve been most often to the main branch in Notting Hill, which has an Aladdin’s Cave-type basement that’s absolutely packed with racks and racks of records for sale. The joyous thing is that they price their records very cheaply, and they always seem to have a surfeit of impossibly obscure indie records amongst the racks. I can’t remember how much this record cost me exactly, but I’d be pretty confident in stating that it won’t have been more than twenty pence. ‘Word of warning,’ as that chap off of The Office would say; if you’re going in there for a ‘quick browse’, be totally prepared to emerge, bleary-eyed, hours later, with armfuls of records by bands that you’ve never heard of.

I’ve mentioned Gag on another post here before, so I won’t bang on about their extraordinary excellence again. God Is My Co-Pilot, though, or Godco (as they’re referred to on this record), I haven’t. I like them; they are crazy, and noisy, and nonsensical, and have wacky distorted guitars and a chaotic type of energy. I’m sure I have a tape somewhere that features John Zorn squonking his saxophone atonally over a selection of their songs – I should dig that out. Godco/Gog Is My Co-Pilot are one of those bands with around twelve thousand separate releases under their collective belt. I like it when bands that are completely unknown to even the more experimental ends of ‘the mainstream’ are, at the same time, extraordinarily prolific and popular in some weird underbelly of music appreciation. Admittedly, I did pick this record up for less than twenty pence after – I presume – somebody else had decided they didn’t want/like it, but more fool them. I’m not going to sell it on.

One final word about the Record & Tape Exchange. This, and other records I’ve bought from there, came with the original (and correct) inserts intact – lyrics and ‘thank-you’s from the bands, and a label release round-up. I like that. I’m not sure why. To me, they form part of the package and the record would be a lesser thing without them.

VARIOUS: Streetsounds Electro 2 (LP, Street Sounds ELCST 2, 1983)

Various - 'Electro 2'

I picked up this record at some point within the past few years, either in some charity/second-hand shop somewhere, or from eBay. Having taken the opportunity to investigate my eBay history to see whether it was the latter, I realise that said history seems to effectively end – for me, at least – at December 2006. Items purchased before then are listed only by their IDs, rather than with the full details of what the item was. That’s kind of a shame, I think, as I would have enjoyed digging into the past and seeing what I had previously purchased and when. I guess it has to be that way, to stop the eBay servers exploding under the sheer weight of information that comprises every piece of data about every purchase ever made on the website. Still, it’s a shame. I can, however, see that my very first recorded purchase on the site was made on 23 September 2001, and that I was described as providing ‘Great communication & Extremely quick payment. Highly Recommended !!!’ according to the feedback. I still maintain my 100% positive feedback record, too. As other feedback comments would say, A+++ TOP EBAYER!!!111!!

A few musings on this record:

It has a great track listing.
As follows:

  • The B Boys: ‘Two, Three, Break’
  • The B Boys: ‘Cuttin’ Herbie’
  • Xena: ‘On The Upside’
  • Hashim: ‘Al-Naafiysh (The Soul)’
  • Rammelzee Vs. K-Rob: ‘Beat Bop’
  • Two Sisters: ‘B-Boys Beware (Club Mix)’
  • Grandmaster And Melle Mel: ‘White Lines (Don’t Do It)’

It’s nice to see that Rammelzee track on there, and exciting to read on the back cover of the record that it was produced by Jean-Michel Basquiat. I’m still eager to track down the album by a band called Grey, which featured – as I recall – both Basquiat and increasingly famous, legendarily shirty actor/director/polymath Vincent Gallo.

Home Taping Is Killing Music.
The back cover of the record features the famous old ‘cassette tape and crossbones’ logo that was designed to discourage people from making copies of albums to share with their friends. Obviously, it didn’t make this happen. In today’s climate of instant duplication of electronic files it seems such a quaint and archaic idea, that people would sit and make taped copies of records. This is the logo:

'Home taping is killing music' logoElectro Is Aural Sex.
Well, that’s what it says on the back cover. I wonder which record label genius thought up that line?

The library in Wellington, Telford used to have this record in its collection.
I used to work in this library in the late eighties, and remember it having a room full of records that could be loaned out, including a full collection of this Electro series along with a whole load of other breakdance/electro/acid-type compilations. I also remember the day that a lot of those records were sold off by the library to make space, and that I didn’t buy them all. I really wish I had have done, now! At the time I was more interested in buying up their older books, especially those covering any kind of magick/parapsychology/religion-type subjects which I was bizarrely interested in at the time.

ANOTHER SUNNY DAY: You Should All Be Murdered (Three Songs) (7″, Sarah SARAH 22, ?)

Another Sunny Day. Another Sarah record! Right after the previous post about a Blueboy record, the random number machine points me at this single. It’s got no release date (or copyright date) mentioned anywhere, but the catalogue number would suggest that this came out in around 1990 or so. Another Sunny Day not only have a delightfully twee band name, but also win my prize for the most twee song title I’ve ever heard – ‘I’m in love with a girl who doesn’t know I exist’. That song isn’t on this record, which has a substantially more beefy and macho title, but I felt it worth mentioning nonetheless.

The insert within this record’s wraparound sleeve is an A6, single-colour (violet) postcard, showing some parked cars outside what I think is Bristol Temple Meads railway station. Sarah releases around this time would contain a selection of postcards like this, which could be assembled into a larger image. Strangely, I don’t know if the Sarah records I have include all of the postcard elements required to build up the big image – I’ve never thought to check. How remiss of me. Also, how odd that I’m not planning on checking after writing this. Perhaps the disappointment if it was not to be is too much to contemplate.

This record was a very apt choice to be randomly selected, for today is in reality Another Sunny Day, being yet another in a long stream of sunny days that have come my way recently. I’ve always been somewhat ambivalent about this kind of weather. I like the sun and the warmth, don’t get me wrong, but I can’t help feeling that I prefer cold weather. I think it’s that the uncomfortable feelings of cold weather can be addressed by wearing more clothes; or by turning up the heating. It’s hard to similarly combat the effects of hot weather without striding around in next to no clothes. And I’m not the kind of fellow who would feel comfortable doing that.