elcome to the Digital Meltd0wn Music Blog. The aim of this blog is to introduce the readers to music that is out of print, commercially unavailable, released under a creative commons license, or with approval by the featured artist. The majority of the music posted here would be considered underground. Don't let that fool you into thinking that the music featured here might be any less enjoyable than that of the mainstream artists you hear on the radio, as this couldn't be further from the truth. Please keep in mind that the majority of the artists that appear on this blog, along with their respective record labels, are not wealthy and need your support. If you enjoy the material that you find here, please support the artists/labels by purchasing their material afterwards. If you are an artist/label that would prefer to have your material removed from this blog, simply leave me a comment, and I would be more than happy to promptly remove the offending post. In addition to running this blog, I also work on a few other projects during my spare time. You can find links to those, as well as a few other important links associated with Digital Meltd0wn in the menu bar above.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Learning the 3 Rs: The San Francisco way

Rhythm Pigs - Rhythm Pigs

After they moved from El Paso, where they formed in 1983, to San Francisco, I used to see the Rhythm Pigs everywhere, they played out all the time. Being ‘the only punk band in El Paso’ & wanting more musickally, they garnered attention nationally by touring heavily & building their musickal chops live on-stage. Great straight-ahead punk rock & Ed Ivey was a really nice guy. This is their first, self-titled lp & then-fledgling Mordam Records second ever release.

Year of Release: 1986
Label: Mordam Records MDR 2
Genre: Punk

Side 1 -
Conditional Love
Dr. Harley
Break New Ground
Human Drama
Machines are In
Break or We’ll Break Your Face
Side 2 -
Taxi Cab
Searching for Myself
Conscience Song
Electric World
Road Machine

Download: Rhythm Pigs - Rhythm Pigs
Download Size: 84.2MB (ripped from pristine vinyl at 320Kbps)

Various Artists - Eyesore: A Stab at The Residents

I just saw The Residents in Santa Cruz (January 23rd at the Rio). As Resident shows always are (my 6th), it was a wonder-filled, entertaining, & thought-provoking event. I could think of nothing else for days. I was going to start this R thang out with these intentionally obscured musickians, even thought about posting up part of the Rio show, but then decided on this winner, but since it's not technically an R, more a V (for Various Artists), it is a Tribute to R(esidents), I posted the Rhythm Pigs first.

This cd features numerous bands doing covers of Residents tunes, a tribute to the Residents, if you can believe it...sounds like an ill-advised idea but actually it is a really excellent release. It gets a bit confusing in places, as some of the tracks are actually different songs running into each other. But it is a tribute the The Residents, so...

The final track, “Benny The Bouncing Bump” is a previously-unreleased live recording of the Residents themselves. & The Rez are on percussion for their cohort, Snakefinger’s take on “Smelly Tongues”.

This collection features reworks & covers by artists who faithfully follow the spirit of Residents' weird wackiness. It's a who's-who cast of underground, indie, & all-around under-appreciated eclectic artists, such as Only a Mother, Thinking Fellers Union Local 282, Snakefinger, Shakin Ray Levis, Splatter Trio, Idiot Flesh, & Amy Denio, as well as better known acts like Cracker & Primus. Fans of the Residents & their genre of irreverent musick should enjoy this entertaining & varied set of loving renditions.

Year of Release: 1996
Label: Vaccination Records VAC006
Genre: Cover songs, avantgarde

Only a Mother - Mahogany Wood
Unknown Artist (*) - Untitled
Idiot Flesh - Bach is Dead
Heavy Vegetable - Time's Up
Frank Pahl - Everyone Comes to the Freak Show
Borgia Popes - Constantinople
UBZUB (*) - What Could the Matter Be?
Thinking Fellers Union Local #282 - Electrocutioner
Mooseheart Faith - Firefly / Vinegar
Splatter Trio - 6 Things to a Cycle, Pt 1 (Chew Chew Gum)
Amy Denio - Act of Being Polite
UBZUB (*) - N-ER-GEE (Crisis Blues)
Utotem (10a) - Sinister Exaggerator
Greg Roe (10b) - Hell No!
Giant Ant Farm - Eva's Warning
Charming Hostess - Won't You Keep Us Working?
Richie West & Bomb Factory - Voices in the Air
Silica Gel - Shut Up! Shut Up!
Mommyheads - Moisture
Supercollider - Walrus Hunt
UBZUB (*) - Lord it's Lonely
Snakefinger - Smelly Tongues
Fibulator - You Yes Yes Yes You
Dramagold - You Yes Yes Yes You (reprise)
Shakin Ray Levis - Red Rider
Poxy Boggards - Santa Dog
Splatter Trio - 6 Things to a Cycle, Pt 2 (Good Good Coffee)
Big Butter - Their Early Years
Cracker - Blue Rosebuds
Pink Floyd The Barber - Boo Who?
Non Credo - Nice Skinny Sinister Old Man
Lungpigs - Nobody Laughs When They Leave
Eskimo - Happy Home
Primus - Hello Skinny medley
Stan Ridgway & J.E.D. (30a) - Excuse / The Booker Tease
Greg Roe (30b) - Gingerbread Man
The Residents (*) - Benny the Bouncing Bump (live)
Unknown Artist (*) - Untitled

(*) There are several hidden tracks on this disc (at the beginning of 02, tacked on the end of tracks 05, 09, 16, & 30). I have left them as they are on the cd, unseparated (part 1 download) but have also included the split tracks (along with the cover artwork - part 2 download), so do with them as you like (the split tracks are marked A for alternate).

Tracks 10 & 30 actually have two songs indexed within the same track.

"Benny The Bouncing Bump" was recorded live on November 17th, 1991 as part of a one-off performance that is commonly referred to as 'Ty's Freak Show'.

Download: Various Artists - Eyesore: A Stab at The Residents pt 1
Download Size: 183MB (ripped at 320Kbps)

Download: Various Artists - Eyesore: A Stab at The Residents pt 2
Download Size: 38.7MB (ripped at 320Kbps)

Romeo Void - Nvr Say Nvr 12" ep

Romeo Void was a New Wave/post-punk band from San Francisco, California active from 1979 to 1985. They are best known for the song "Never Say Never". The best version of the song is from the four-song 12“ ep released on 415 (San Francisco’s telephone area code) Records. Their popularity was primarily in alternative & college radio. Because of extensive radio play, say ‘Romeo Void’ & the name almost always conjures up the phrase "I might like you better if we slept together" to most people...that unforgettable chorus of their best-known song, 1981's "Never Say Never". But the rest of the lyrics referencing incest, murder, homelessness, & other dark subjects, makes plain that singer/lyricist Debora Iyall has more on her mind than titillation.

The combination of Iyall's powerful vocals & graphic imagery along with the band's blend of Joy Division-style atmospherics & Gang of Four pacing, propelled by Benjamin Bossi's wall-of-sound free jazz saxophone skronking, elevated Romeo Void above their contemporary New Wave acts, proving them to be a strong American post-punk band.

Debora Iyall, a Native American of the Cowlitz tribe was born in rural Washington, was raised in Fresno, CA, then moved to San Francisco in the mid-'70s to attend the San Francisco Art Institute. While there she met fellow students Peter Woods & Jay Derrah, who had formed a pseudo-60s revival band called The Mummers & the Poppers. Iyall became the group's singer & also began incorporating music into her own poetry & performance art projects. Intrigued by the growing San Francisco punk scene, which included fellow Art Institute students like Avengers singer Penelope Houston & members of the Mutants as well as Pearl Harbor & the Explosions, Iyall, sculptor & visual artist Frank Zincavage, Woods, & Derrah formed Romeo Void on Valentine's Day 1979. The name was inspired by a headline on the cover of a local magazine’s Valentine’s issue that read "Romeo Void - Why single women can't get laid in San Francisco." Shortly after the group's formation, original saxophonist Bobby Martin & another local reedsman, Benjamin Bossi, swapped bands, with Martin joining art punk extremists the Offs while Bossi teamed up with Romeo Void.

The revised lineup recorded their debut single, "White Sweater," b/w a cover of Jorgen Ingmann's atmospheric 1961 twang-guitar instrumental hit "Apache," for the new local indie 415 Records in 1980. Before sessions commenced for their first album, 1981's It's a Condition, founding member Derrah left the group & was replaced by ex-Explosions drummer John "Stench" Haines. One of the masterpieces of American post-punk, It's a Condition received rave reviews upon its release. Perhaps even more importantly, Cars leader Ric Ocasek heard the album when a roadie played it on the Cars' tour bus. He invited the group to his Synchro Sound studio in Boston. The result was this Ocasek-produced record, the Never Say Never ep.

Year of Release: 1981
Label: 415 Records 415A-0007
Genre: New Wave, post-punk

Side one -
Never Say Never
In the Dark
Side two -
Present Tense
Not Safe

Download: Romeo Void - Nvr Say Nvr 12“ ep
Download Size: 45.8MB (ripped from 415 heavy vinyl at 320Kbps)


icastico said...

The first punk band I played in opened up for the Rhythm Pigs in Las Cruces NM...just north of El Paso. I have a cassette of the show that I will rip when I get a cassette player...it is with the original line up. Really one of the best live bands ever. And super nice guys.

lil m said...

Ed Ivey is runnin' some joints now in SF... one is a restaurant called Sol Luna across from Asian Art Museum on McCallister near Larkin & the SF City Hall. Y'all should stop in and bug him sometime...

Zer0_II said...


Hopefully you'll see this. I just wanted to let you know that the link to "Eyesore: A Stab at the Residents" is already dead. If you don't mind re-uploading it to Mega, then sending me a message, preferably on Facebook, then I will add a download mirror to Adrive.


to Zer0_ii,
I just saw this comment. I re-upped this again to box to make it easy for all.

KM said...

Can you reup the Romeo Void too? Looks like Mega is one of the last good file dumps going. Thanks!


to KM,

still hoping MEGA survives.

Romeo Void re-upped.

Thanks for the interest.

KM said...

Thank you so much!!! Listening to it right now!


to Km,

You are most welcome.