So I just sat down, chemically stewing, trying to compose an epitaph. I’ve listened to Dopesmoker on repeat for hours now and was just waiting for appropriate pharmaceutical balance before proceeding. I wanted something original, but the only thing I could comprehend was Mr Kurtz’s final twisted words from the Heart of Darkness. “The horror, the horror… exterminate all the brutes”. My Dopesmoker re-release retrospective has been delayed until further notice. It was time, I thought, for a drastic re-appraisal of the whole scene; and it was then I stumbled over my collection of the output of Scotland’s best kept secret. Less a band and more a multidimensional outpouring of uber-energy disco-freakouts combining the ecstasy of Goat with the pure MC5 of Workin’ Man Noise Unit sans the sandpaper abrasiveness. It’s a condenser filled with Comets on Fire psychedelia injected red-hot into single malt rock steadfastness. It’ll give y’ a full-on brain-wedgie and a tenthousandvolt dancefloor jolt that’ll keep ye rhythmically jumping until the closer. They also come be-garbed in the coolest on-stage getup; headdresses and ponchos promise the myth of the West for these Glasgae scrubs pouring out undiluted Americana. Systematic wah abuse is their method; total world domination their ultimate goal.
Playing a rock and roll that can only demand the most devoted and disparate of fanbases, who congregate together only on nights of righteous energetic sonic ritual, when the combined power of all members of band and audience reaches a kind of spiritual critical mass and comes to a head in a long fine flash and like holes in pieces of paper momentarily aligning and allowing us to see beyond the real into the infinite, in a true unity of the merits of heaven and hell; where the flame-on rock and roll fury of Los Tentakills is salutary and medicinal, melting away with corrosive acid any notions that man has a body distinct from his soul, and the true infinite is revealed. In that moment, followed by a petit mort hangover, in which all of creation folds upon itself like origami paper until it forms a perfect sphere in which everything is holy, before it opens once more and returns to corruption and imperfection. Los Tentakills are at the very white crest of a wave of re-heathenisation sweeping across rock and roll. For entirely too long the music of the world has been ruled by post-christian notions of what is ‘respectable’ when the only true successes throughout society are people like Homesick Aldo, who are out of time and whose time is finally coming. Ever since Jazz brought out sex, drugs, drink, excitement, a deep and thrilling notion of energetic primitiveness all of its own we have been undergoing re-heathenisation. Returning to primitivism, to pre-Christian times and beliefs where rock and roll was music of enlightenment, of meditation and of remembrance and also of love, enjoyment, inebriety. Los Tentakills feels so new because it is so very old. It is rock rhythms and attitude straight outta the long-forgotten rock and roll hinterland, the originals decayed beyond any archaeology, but living and beating in our own hearts. It’s primal, carnal rock and roll from a time when people played music and danced to keep warm. Where music, sex and inebriety are precisely the same. All are a temporarily impossible suspension of the most noble of humanity, and the most animalistic. Rite on.
Information and releases, as well as all that Americana just wheedles its way to us through the intergalactic airwaves of majesty and magic of this space collective. Established by the infiltration of the staid Glasgae scene by bass guru and all-round right-on warrior woman Celina, who hails from El Paso (just like the Tentakills’ special space ponchos, which rumour has it allow communication to secret CIA freakout satellites in the upper atmosphere) and North Carolina’s contribution to Tentakills’ lineup is tardy drummer Jackson Marlette; who natch brings the staccato drumdrum needed for the danceable beats flawlessly dispensed. So the utterly genuine Americana wafting off all of their records is imported, not entirely astrally projected. Wherever they’re from, Glasgow, El Paso, North Carolina, space, from underneath the round stones beneath the earth; wherever it is, it’s the wrong side of the tracks. Forget the Heavy Company and the Heavy Eyes, the first word in full-pelt 13th Floor Elevators projection and surf noise retention is right here in Glasgae.
They’ve got tons of releases, even this soon after cosmic birth, but my top pick would be the entirely free and utterly sublime Live at 13th Note kicking out of the jams, because that is just excellent. Go get 'em boy! The Tentakills also have a gig incoming on the 19th of Jan at the fabulous 13th Note, so give 'em a look see. Our old friends the Kosmik Deed will also be in attendance.
Written under duress by Steven. (What is a Fiscal Cliff anyway? Can you base jump off it?)