The Feelies - Live at CBGB's, New York, NY (6/24/77)
The Feelies - Live at the Whisky, Los Angeles, CA (2/24/81)
Last week I was idly turning pages in one of my CD folders, saw "Feelies" scrawled in Sharpie on a couple of them and thought "Wait a minute, I've got all my Feelies shows in a different folder - what the hell are these?" Then I saw the dates - 1981? 1977?! Wha???
I threw the surprise discs in to give 'em a listen. And that's all I've been listening to for a week now, folks. I think you'll do the same when you get them. This is magic, this is manna, this is sacred cow fertility rite totem pole smoke lodge kiva-this kiva-that spectacular crap. It's craptacular, truly.
According to the best Feelies resource, these are two of the earliest shows floating around as boots. The '77 show is the very earliest available. You're gonna listen to it and at first say "THIS is the Feelies?" but shortly you'll be saying "This IS the Feelies!" And the '81 West Coast show is nothing short of a total guitar-raveup of cosmic dimensions. If the energy of this show could only be turned into raw power, we could give up foreign oil today, forever! And have enough left over to get us to Mars.
The '81 show reminds me of the first time I heard The Good Earth. Came home to the apartment I shared with my oldest brother after a long night out, ears ringing, blood pumping, probably still a bit too much beer in the system even after all the dancing, and my brother was "Listening to music." This means he was enjoying his own music with his own beer, only at home. He didn't like the crowded, smokey nightlife. I can't blame him. Anyway, for a change he actually invited me and my friend Mark to join him. (Not the artist Mark - didn't know him yet - but MIT Mark). Of course, we had to sit perfectly still and not move a muscle because he was playing his newest cache of LPs, not yet transferred to tape and there was no way he was gonna have us bumpy creatures jump around and maybe make the needle skip and scratch his brand new vinyl. So we sat carefully down in the corner like drunken mice. And he put on an album. And we all went to heaven.
Well, almost. By the closing track of side one, I'd almost left my body. I felt my individual atoms vibrate faster and faster and faster and I knew that if the song went on just one more freakin' second I was gonna blow! I'd either leave my corporeal existence and fly the cosmos like the Silver Surfer or I'd obliterate half of Madison's West Side!
Fortunately for Madison, maybe not for me, the song had to end. Older Brother moved to put on side two, but we begged mental delirium and asked him not to. It was too much, I tells ya, too damn much. I felt a lot like that listening to this '81 show, folks. Hope you do too.
A Note to the Listener: There are one or two or so strange moments of silence in the '77 show. I can't tell if they are digi-errors or came from the original source. I swear I hear what sounds like the "clunk" of a Record button getting pushed...
And, brothers and sisters - Buy SHIT! (Someone let me know if Twin Tone's "custom" CD thing really works. Costs twenty bucks per disc and the artist is supposed to get a flat five from that in royalties, but the only one I want is four songs long and at a Lincoln a tune...well, I'm cheap.)
Now playing: Vibracathedral Orchestra - Your Head Shone Like A Stone