Improvijazzation Nation, issue # 17


Improvijazzation Nation, issue # 17


Brought to you by: Zzaj Productions & D.B.A.R.

Improvijazzation Nation

Seventeenth Edition, Summer 1995

D. Metcalf, HQ 19th TAACOM, Unit 15015 POB 2879 APO AP 96218-0171 




WHAT NOW – ‘zine


releases (including 7″‘s)

Poetry by C. MULROONEY


INTERVIEW with Dan Susnara (Mumble Mumble Music)

Beautiful music from LEE EISENSTEIN

Heavy music from SUBLIME NATION

More “twangin'” from DAVID CHILDERS


& much much more!

Rotcod Zzaj


Is this ol’ world ROCKIN’ ON, or wot? I’m tellin’ you people, th’ contactz are ELECTRIC! I’ve gotten more material in for th’ ‘zine in the last two months than over the past two YEARS! A great deal of it is comin’ in from WWW and other internet sources – & that’s just S-U-P-E-R, as far as we here at “I.N.” are concerned! Th’ netz have a potential for REVOLUTION! No mo’ borin’ “As Th’ Turd Worms” soap-opera D.I.Y. Just becoz’ yer’ sittin’ in Podunk offers no EXCUSE anymore! If you’ve got a keyboard, a guitar, or a coupla’ SPOONS & know what to DO with ’em, YOU too can be a part of this thing – eSPECIALly if yer’ hooked to th’ net! It’s hard to BELIEVE how far this has gone in just the last two years or so.

If yer’ not really musically inclined, BUT you’ve got access to the net and have a friend or a group who ARE… help ’em out by SHOWING them how they can hook up to OTHER players in only MOMENTS. &, of course, when yer’ doin’ that – be SURE & tell ’em that one of the BEST places (fresh outlook, jaded opinion & all) to have their materials reviewed is right HERE! OK? We’d appreciate it, & more importantly, the READERS will continue to get the NEWEST blood around! That’s what makes this ‘zine (& others just as hot) C-O-O-K… YOUR ingredients! Genre makes little difference, as long as the CREATIVE flow is what drives your music/poetry/art, etc. Get it on IN to the address shown at the top of this page! We look FORWARD to it! & THANKS!

Rotcod Zzaj

What Now: ‘Zine – From Tanja Kazmin/Coady comes this FINE lil’ ‘zine (did I say little? There’s over 60 PAGES in this full-sized “Special Double Holiday Premier” issue). Some names we at “I.N.” recognize right offa’ th’ ol’ cricketstik… Elliot Smith, Tom Wright (who JUST put out a tape under th’ Zzaj Productions label, called “Withdrawal”) & a coupla’ others. This is another INTERNET/WWW promoted dealie, & Tanja’s done a great job with it. Tasteful text manipulations, cool & clean reviews for ‘zines, LP’s, tapes & even some CD’s. In addition to the ‘zine itself, the package included a FINE little tape, called “dust black polish”, by “jane”. Little 4-piece with a definite folk bent – this phrogger’s played ALL the time in th’ T-bird – my wife just fell in LOVE with it, prob’ly ‘coz of Heather Sandford’s vox. NICE! A VERY pleasant read that comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED by th’ Zzajman! Contact at 808 Nicholas Ave., Staten Island, NY 10802, OR if yer’ “hooked”, get hold of her at 

Rotcod Zzaj

Bughead: VOLUME 3   In th’ mood fer’ sum phunk’n fun? This lil’ tape, in from the “Canned Corn” label (CCORN@DELPHI.COM ) will have yer’ HOPPIN’, peoples! Nathan Adams (guitar/vox), Jason Powell (Bass/vox) & Mike Brophy (drums) bring on recollections of summa’ th’ FINEST from Funkadelics, in particulate on th’ LEAD guitar passages! These boyz were an INSTANT hit wi’ Mz. Zzaj, who as you may know, is my “judge & jury” for rock-oriented stuph. She sed “jeeziz, yer’ a LUCKY ol’ phart, this stuph is gettin’ DAMNED good” when she heard Bughead th’ first time! & if THAT ain’t a recommendation to GET IN TOUCH, I dunno’ wot’n’l IS, volkz! Contact at 809 Caloosa Trail, Cassleberry, FL 32707 (that’s Bughead’s address) OR get hold of Canned Corn at th’ e-mail shown above! Highly recommended! Rotcod Zzaj

The Federation Flash: ‘zine – From “Starbuilders” ( ) comes this little 16 page (standard full-size) newsletter/catalog with all manner o’ discussion & info on “parallel worlds”, spiritual guidelines and other topics related to things we don’t often think about a whole lot (most of us, anyway, in MY neck o’ th’ woods). The articles are well-written and thoughtful, not like some of the “religous” pubz we’ve had occasion to review. Th’ Zzaj itinerary doesn’t generally include forays into OBE or “spirit planes” – but this made for a quick & interesting read… can’t HURT, right? Having actually “experienced” an OBE myself, many MANY yearz ago, I’d NOT put this kind of material down; it’s just that I’m generally too busy enJOYing my RETURN that I’ve not much time for other volkz interpretations of the “other side”. This little ‘zine is not BAD; certainly worth an e-mail to the INTERNET address shown above. Rotcod Zzaj

More Dead Trees: ‘zine – Looks like it’s ‘ZINE month, eh? I got a TUNNA’ ‘zines in for review this trip… this one’s outta’ Cleveland (from Dave Miyares), half-size, with a strong focus on NETTIN’ it! Credit for that must go, at least in part, to Elliot Smith (he reviewed a BUNCH o’ stuph in issue # 15 of “I.N.”)… he makes SURE there are e-mail addresses for nearly EVERY group he reviews. Those not plugged in to the netz won’t realize the weight o’ that, but those who are ON will know just how neat it is! There’s an “artist spotlight” (Matt Knoth), a nice piece on th’ perilz o’ “Evil Radio” (meaning the “commercialization” of th’ medium) & a coupla’ pages o’ poetry tacked on at the end. This is FUN, & that’s the most important element of any good ‘zine, eh? RECOMMENDED… contact at POB 45065, Cleveland, OH 44145, OR at ( ) Rotcod Zzaj

Tommie Griggz: Self-titled – Here’s a New Joisey band fer’ yer’… ‘nother kickin’, rockin’ (but NOT screamin’) buncha’ playerz that’ll have you on the EDGE o’ yer’ seat! There’s POWER here, but itz’ not so RAW that it’ll drive you away. This tape has already BEEN spinnin’ betwixt here’n Seoul – DEFINITELY roadable. Gitarz are MORE than “acceptable”, clean & cut right THROUGH all th’ b.s. This ain’t no three-chord wonder, either, volkz! “Gotta’ Be True – If Ya’ Really Love Me” is prob’ly my favorite on this trek, but I’m sure there’ll be mo’ in frum these boyz! They know PLB (Pandora’s Lunchbox), & that raised ’em up a notch or two in der Zzajaugen! In fact, they JAMMED with ’em, so we’re hopin’ they made a tape o’ THAT, too – so we get a chance to REVIEW it, right, Tim? Though this is NOT improv, itz’ music that’ll get yer’ blood UP & movin’… comes HIGHLY RECOMMENDED from Zzaj! Contact at POB # 6, Collingswood, NJ 08108 Rotcod Zzaj

The Evolution Control Committee: COMPACT DISCTRUCTIONS – According to th’ big package of descriptive stuph, this project was 4 years in the making… research grants & alla’ that, yer’ know! Rappers ‘ave their claim to fame on th’ scratching of records, twistin’ & turnin’ to get th’ “mix” to mesh (& they can KEEP their claim to fame – there’s no PLACE in the world – in MY jaded mind – for stuph that uses chaos as a crutch for puttin’ down others as “hos” & glorifyin’ cop killers… ‘course that’s somethin’ fer’ me to “rant” about sometime, not s’posed to be part of a review, I reckon). After th’ first wierdnesses, Doctor Mike Gunderson comes on in (what sounds like) a presentation speech that outlines how ECC went about their experiments. Believe it or not, it’s QUITE interesting. By strategic placement of magic marker patterns on the playing surface of a CD (as well as other methods), the sounds loop or stick… & actually form some VERY listenable pieces (& a few that aren’t “listenable” at ALL). He also uses CD player “shaking” methods as a part of the show. DEFINITELY ahead of it’s time, I rather suspect you’ll see some volume of these kinds of experiments after folks have listened to this one! Sort of an “advanced techno-improv”, if yer’ kin’ dig wot’ I mean! For all you connoisseurs of “dangerous listening”, this is THE ticket! This is MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, & getz th’ Zzaj “pick” of this issue for “forward-looking” soundz! Contact, like, IMMEDIATELY at POB 10391, Columbus, OH 43201, or if yer’ netted, contact at  They’ve also got a pretty nice WWW site at  that’s V-E-R-Y interesting! Rotcod Zzaj


& NOW, in what’s becoming a TRADEMARK symbol fer’ “I.N.”, an interview with one o’ th’ STALWARTS in today’s D.I.Y. scene. I first started corresponding with Dan WAY back, ’90 or so, & have reviewed TUNZ o’ tapes that he’s been on, or produced in solo efforts. Not afraid to tackle much of ANYthing, Dan produces some real QUALITY music from his home-base in Chicago. His privacy there ‘as been invaded more’n once when I hit th’ cupz. We’re in th’ process of layin’ down some trax together on an effort of our own (tentatively titled “Grolsch Violations”, or somethin’ like that), & I just couldn’t get the thought outta’ my mind that an INTERVIEW with Dan was in ORDNUNG… read, enJOY, but after reading do what ALL good lil’ D.I.Y.’ers DO… get in TOUCH with him (at 7806 S. Kilpatrick, Chicago, IL 60652)… &, as always, TELL ‘im Zzaj sentcha’, ok? Here goes…

Zzaj: I’ve noticed a wide diversion in yer’ playin’ styles, all the way from 60’s psychedelic to “headstone” musics; any particular reason for that, training (or else) wise?

Dan: My age, for one thing. Nearly three decades of influences. I started out with the Beatles. I was in my first little combo at age 10. The bass players’ older brother had all these Moby Grape and Mothers Of Invention albums playing all the time; I was cutting my teeth on guitar learning songs like “Incense and Peppermints” and other ’60’s stuff. So, that’s my roots. In the ’70’s, I was heavily in to Ian Anderson/Jethro Tull, which got me writing serious songs. In the ’80’s, The Psychedelic Furs, The Cure and The Smiths all, for me, evolved “isms” of psychedelic music, while at the same time being brooding and morose, I liked the contrast. So THAT, too, left it’s mark; as well as all the female fronted bands going on NOW, like Lush, Sterolab, etc. They teach you about harmonies, things like that. Everything I hear that’s somewhat “different” influences me.

Zzaj: Do you think “commercial” artists or D.I.Y. artists have influenced YOUR music more (or less)?

Dan: I’ve been on or around the indi scene since ’88, so I guess I’ve heard a decent amount of both worlds. I hate “commercial” music. What I listen to is CALLED “alternative”, but I don’t consider it “commercial”. The tape manipulation/industrial/experimental people on the indi scene have influenced me greatly (Rikk Rue, The Tape Beatles, Gadget, Negativeland, Evolution Control Committee.) Every indi songwriter, musician, etc., you hear about always leaves some kind of mark.

Zzaj: Is airplay important? ‘zines? Which have more impact on the D.I.Y. of today?

Dan: I think ‘zines get you more response in that people are more apt to look for something they read about; airplay is important, too, but with today’s access to technology, the indi stations are flooded with tapes, and you’re lucky if your tape gets played 3 or 4 times. But, really, we are in DIRE need of airplay AND ‘zines that review indi people. It’s getting scarcer and scarcer.

Zzaj: Who are some of your favorite’s today?

Dan: Oh God, so many!! Scott Davey, Jeff Olson (Screamin’ Popeyes), Dino Dimuro, they’re all brilliant. John M. Bennett. Tom Wright is great. Ron Jagielnik and Tom Mikols get my vote as “Best Indi Tape of 1994”, with their “Bright Black” tape. Too many to list, really!

Zzaj: will D.I.Y. ever “buy th’ banannas fer’ ye’?

Dan: Nope, and it never will; because the music would become a job, and thus become a chore and a bore. I’d like to just make more money so I could afford better equipment. Who wouldn’t?

Zzaj: Do you have a “day gig”? If so, what?

Dan: Yeah, knock on wood. Factory warehouse work, foam products. Peanuts for paychecks. Took some computer classes; hope to get back to that soon, then look for something better. Yawn!

Zzaj: What kind of equipment do you use? Any future plans, equipmentwise?

Dan: 1985 Gibson SG, 1981 Ibanez acoustic, Kawai PH-50 keyboards, Casiotone keyboards, Dr. Rhythm durm machines, stomp box effects, tape lookps/dialogue manipulation. I don’t even want to talk about the stupid 4-track! FUTURE PLANS? Yes! Buy a fucking 8-track! THIS SUMMER! Do, or die! Some ethnic percussion stuff & instruments.

Zzaj: Are the D.I.Y./indie efforts you hear nowadays gettin’ better or worse?

Dan: Slicker sounding, with all the new technology. A lot more people are going in the studio these days, which is scary. I think a lot of indi music still sounds like the ’80’s, and needs to grow and change. Not ALL indi music, but a lot of it. I’d like to hear more real drummers, for instance (with my own music, as well). More originality, too. MORE REBELLION!

Zzaj: What’s the Chicago scene like for D.I.Y.?

Dan: Outside of our tight circle of people, I don’t know of anyone much else. Up north, however, we get people coming in from out of town, in dribbles. The only indi place to play is “The Luna Cabaret”, which is run by Maestro Subgum, and “The Whole”. We saw Little Fyodor there, hung out; had a blast. My friends and I play the occasional coffee house gig. Not that much cookin’ right now; we’re all busy on our own projects.

Zzaj: Any last words for’s out there?

Dan: Network as much as you possibly can. Try and get access to a computer (to make covers, flyers, etc.), save for an 8-track, ’cause 4-tracks suck, but at the same time stay in a cassette medium rather than contribute to the CD disease. Above all, keep it COMING!

…many thanks to Dan for his time in preparing these responses! If YOU have a candidate for interview, let me KNOW about it, ok? R. Zzaj

Sublime Nation: Self-titled – This ‘un is in from “Multimusica” USA & ‘as sum “names” on it. Th’ lead vox are the headliner, quite well-established work by Gary Tanin. Jerry Harrison (of Talking Heads), T. Lavitz (Dixie Dregs) & Victor De Lorenzo (of Violent Femmes) round out the bill, with a supporting “cast” just TOO long to list here. Since our orientation here is more towards “heavy energy” and some amount o’ th’ wierd, my first spin on th’ ol’ CD player sed’ “oh, no, yuppie pop”. There is some taste of that, but on second, third (& now fourth) rounds, I’m sittin’ ‘ere slightly “amazed”… guess th’ “hook” ain’t all depleted yet. Shades o’ ’80’s pop? Only enough to make me think, somehow, (momentarily) of late-night excursions with Steely Dan & th’ boyz! Recording is SUPERB on all cutz, & so instrumentally sound that it’ll make this quite “radioable”, I’m sure. For some in our readership, that WILL be a turnoff… but, even as STRONGLY dedicated to improv/D.I.Y. as I am, I must say that there’s no reason to “shut out” music that’s got th’ “energy” just because it’s bein’ aired a lot. &, MAN, does that energy shine through on “When You Need Somebody”! Kick & phunk yer’ way out on to th’ flo’, yup, versure! There’s a few more love-oriented ballads than I might normally opt for, but in the end-run, it’s SUPPOSED to be “sublime”, eh? Vaporous? Supreme? Alla’ that & THEN some! If yer’ only into th’ jagged-edge, you won’t dig on this – BUT, if you enJOY hotpopfun e’ery once in-a-while, this is RECOMMEDED quality listening! Contact at POB 10181, Milwaukee, WI, 53210-0181, or e-mail at 

Lee Eisenstein: SONGS FOR A DREAMER – This CD is truly REFRESHING! All the way from classical, to jazz to light latino, Lee’s guitar helps you transcend the horrors that abound around you. EXCELLENT arrangements, recording and synthwork run you through a swirling beauty that some of us tend to forget in the hectic pace that life often becomes these days. John Bolivar’s soprano sax and flute work provides the sweet & gentle counterpoint that rounds out the concept. The bass work of Stan Sergeant reminds me of David Friesen in places. Of course, there are plenty of other volkz contributing to your pleasure, way too many to itemize here. Having been to Hawaii myself (that’s Lee’s current abode), I can almost feel the lush tropical atmosphere and visions of wave-tossed tranquility that shine THROUGH on this masterpiece. There’s no question about dubbing this the “pick” of this issue for “sweet solo guitar”. I truly enJOYed this, & there’s no doubt in my mind that you will as well! Comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED by Zzaj! Contact Lee at 361 Kalama St., Kailua, HI 96734 If you don’t buy ANY other music this year, get THIS one! Rotcod Zzaj

David Childers/Irwin Bostian: LIVE at MOON ROOM/PEWTER ROSE – There are some (my wife surely not th’ least among ’em) who ask on occasion… “why are you ALWAYS listenin’ to alla’ that music?” I’ll tell you volkz, these gents (who USED to be, ‘long wi’ some others, th’ “Mount Holly Hellcats” – see issue # 16) are pure & simple a LARGE part o’ th’ reason why. In my mind, there’s nothin’ more “american” or “purty” than bluegrass-tinged acoustics playin’ late in to the night. Tellin’ tales… about REAL people… th’ FOLKS, doncha’ know? There are prob’ly (literally) thousands of these acts scattered across the land, & just a FEW of ’em have “seen” the vision… even fewer are able to mesh the vision seen with talent enough (& musically, expression enough) to make it sound like more’n amateur night. David’s vox, with just a taste o’ Tom Waits in there, (even partner Irwin’s, on occasion) join with the excellent acoustic playing to give the listener an absolutely haunting sense of what “it’s all about”. 90 minutes (wishin’ I coulda’ been there) that will carry you on into reflections both sweet/sad & loving/lonely, & let you walk on down the path of life knowin’ that someone else has “walked in them shoes.” The live recording is VERY clean, considering that many times th’ guitars come out way too “boomy”, a FINE tape all the way ’round. If this ain’t “independent”, then I don’t know wot’n’l IS! GET it! Gets th’ Zzaj “pick” of this issue for “folk/bluegrass”, & comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! At Single Wing Records, POB 845, Mt. Holly, NC 28120 Rotcod Zzaj

Loblolly: YOU’VE TAKEN TOO MUCH ACID – They (Veronica Rusnak, or th’ presswriter who wrote th’ “Local Music” article on “new” music, in the press kit that accompanied this tape) called it “the dark side of psychedelic”. Well, yeah… ‘specially in Veronica’s “Slick-like” vox; I can definitely relate this back to ’67/’68 time-frames, “under the influence, & wishin’ I could find a way out.” Those who “dug” on acid & th’ other mind-phrogs phloatin’ in those times WILL be transported back to th’ (sometimes) most UNpleasant paranoias that could abound. Oh, I’m not talkin’ about th’ MUSIC. Clean/smashing guitarz, a real sense of “floating” loose through the ether, very “hawkwindish” in spots! Music’s FINE! It’s just that the lyrical intent (seems to be to) get under your braincase & remind you that all is not “all as it seems”. Though the technology is very ’90’s sounding, well-recorded I mean, this is definitely NOT ’90’s “plastique”; except mebbe’ in th’ sense o’ mental C4 or TNT, “blow up th’ yuppies” sorta’ trip. Garagey, hard-edged & gutsy all at th’ same time! RECOMMENDED! Contact, like right now, maaann, at POB 93765, Milwaukee, WI 53203, or e-mail Veronica at  Rotcod Zzaj

Butte: THE NYMPH/VINCE & GATOR/SPEED MAN – This pack o’ 7″ers sez they’re “preserving the avant-garde aesthetic”… couldn’t o’ described ‘er better meself! Bassist/keyboardist S.N. Wight & vox/lyricist Bob Schmitz join with Tim Perkis & Peter MacLeod to DISTURB yer’ floe… I mean there’ll BE no iceberg existence while yer’ spinnin’ this! “Nymph” sorta’ plodz along, leanin’ on th’ bass to support th’ clear storytellin’ by Bob. Mighty cute madness. I really enJOYed it… real change o’ pace! “Vince” is another “story” vein piece, slowed-down blooz lick thang! Side 2’s “Gator” haz gitarz that terrorize a bit more, quite Zappaesque, & “Speed Man” extends th’ story ethic. Won’t hold yer’ forever, but unique in it’s own write. Contact at 1448 Fernside Blvd., Alameda, CA 94501-3122 or e-mail to 

Lunk: CREDIT MAN & NURSE/TEN THOUSAND FLIES – In from Lucky Garage Record Company (the same group that put out the “BUTTE” 7″ reviewed above, this is slightly more “edge” oriented; “Credit Man” is about th’ “American Dream” that, in their version, has phallen to poop… MadAve carried to th’ MAX! Slightly different player lineup, Tom George (vox), Sam Durant (guitar), S.N. Wight (bass) & J. Spinney (drums). If you’ve eaten acid & then gone to make a major purchase, you’ll be able to relate to th’ horror of “Credit Man”. “Nurse”, on side 2, is a screamer that’ll GET yer’ attention (or yer’ alREADY brain-dead) & “10K Flies” is a modern-day “meditation” tape about lyin’ naked in a room fulla’ vermin. Not xactly “fun” music, but it’ll KEEP yer’ blood movin’! RECOMMENDED! See address(es) above! Rotcod Zzaj

All o’ th’ 7″ selections below come from CANNED CORN records, POB 2946, ORLANDO, FL, 32802-2946, or e-mail to CCORN@DELPHI.COM 

Shyster: 7″ EP – Side 1 has “If I Have To”; thrash with a tinge o’ metal, very HIGH energy stuph… & “Ride” which carries on th’ trad. HEAVY punch, rather raw. “Homecoming”, on side 2, is GREAT road music with a lotta’ “raw”, as well as STRONG basslines to keep it KICKIN’ & the last toon, “Gutwrench” is sped up to th’ MAXimum. This stuff sounds like th’ same riffs, good if yer’ krankin’ but not much else, tho’ th’ bass all through salvages it from anonymity. Didn’t do much for me, partly because it sounded kinda’ “muddy”! Wotta’ shame! Rotcod Zzaj

Sorehead: 7″ EP – Ploof! & Stuart on side 1 are H-O-T! Vox quite intelligible, but more importantly, the guitar leadz are clear & not just “thunka-thunka” mindlessness! Clear recording & guitar talent make this one a KEEPER fer’ SURE! “Beats Like This” on side 2 adds an acoustic guitar intro/feel that’s quite attractive & VERY well recorded; kinda’ ’70ish, if yer’ know wot I mean; “Word Around” has th’ DEFINITE feel of “danger” to it. All ’round SUPER little 7″. I really enJOYed this one! If yer’ thots are runnin’ toward 7″ers, this one is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! In fact, it gets the “pick” of this issue for best 7″! Rotcod Zzaj

Two Scary People: LIGHTS OUT/SHIM More EXCELLENT indie rockin’ stuph. Gitarz are CLEAR as a bell, & tho’ th’ rhythms are quite standard, there’s REAL energy here, eSPECIALly on “Lights Out”. “Shim” is a nice instrumental with some nice strat-sounding gitarz on it. All in all, a fun ride, nearly “blue ribbon” material. In fact, now on my third listen, this runz a close second to the “Sorehead” 7″ for sound quality and excellence in playing. Not bad, & surely worth a try! Rotcod Zzaj

That’s the end of th’ Canned Corn stuph for this time ’round; hopin’ to see MORE stuff in from ’em in the FUTCHUM, yoh?

Liverball: ICEBURGH/THIGHMASTER & BUSHQUAYLE/METALICKER – This 7″ in from RIPE RECORDS, POB 10119, Pittsburgh, PA 15232 has Mike Grimes (drums), Buck Knauer (guitar/bass), Ray Kolcun (guitar/bass) & Joe Triglia (vox). VERY well recorded, the guitarz SHINE through. METAL city, yer’ know, volkz? This stuff IS what “road music” wuz named for… make a tape of about 10 o’ these 7″‘ers, stick it inna’ T-Bird & c-r-u-i-s-e on up th’ ROAD. Long’s yer’ got THIS krankin’, ain’t NOBODY gonna’ get in yer’ way & th’ cops can’t CATCH yer’, right? Just simple red-blooded rock & roll, won’t getcha’ in ter’ heaven, but if yer’ ridin’ in that T-Bird under th’ influences I THINK yer’ are, yer’ prob’ly wasn’t goin’ in THAT direction ennyway, right? Phrantic phun! Coulda’ sworn I had an e-mail for ’em, too, but I can’t seem to find it! RECOMMENDED! Rotcod Zzaj

Expose: ‘Zine – & WHAT a ‘zine it IS! From Peter Thelen’s Exposure Radio Network comes the LATEST news, views & reviews of the happenings in the world of progressive rock! This is a full-size, 8 1/2 x 11″ publication that COVERS it. Updates on Progfest ’94, an excellent “News & Rumor” section, playlists from Exposure Radio, reviews of new releases, as well as reissues… it’s ALL here! They have a pretty fair presence on INTERNET, & seem to network quite a bit. I’ve enjoyed SEVERAL issues of th’ ‘zine and find the REVIEWS section to be the most valuable and informative. This is the TICKET if yer’ in to progressive, & comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED from Zzaj! NOW, I just RECEIVED issue # 6 (January-March) in! Peter keeps RIGHT on schedule, the ‘zine is CLEAN & precise! Tellin’ yer’ volkz, if yer’ IN to progrock (even in the SLIGHTEST) – GET THIS! TODAY! Contact at 6167 Jarvis Ave., # 150, Newark, CA 94560, or via e-mail at  Rotcod Zzaj

Blue Beat Jacket: ‘Zine – This ‘zine outta’ Japan has been ’round for at least a coupla’ years, tho’ I’m not sure if th’ quake disrupted their ops or not… I hear so infrequently from the editor/publisher, Yusake Keida (’bout e’ery year or so, it seems) that it’s hard to keep track. Three issues this time (#’s 3, 4 and 5), chock-FULL of interesting stuff. Much of it celebrates Unca’ Jack (Kerouac) & that whole “scene”… as an ol’ “beat” generational reject, I can most ASSUREDLY relate to the intent/focus here. One of the issues has a WHOPPING trib to poet Charles Bukowski. This time ’round, a LOT of the poems are in english, making it MUCH easier to read than some earlier issues! Xerox, three-quarter size, makes for quite an interesting read – particularly if you’re in (like I am) to seeing how OTHER cultures view “our” freedoms! RECOMMENDED, without a doubt! Contact at 1-5-54 Sugue-cho, Sanjo-shi, Nigata Japan Don’t see an e-mail anywhere, so I guess that’s out! Rotcod Zzaj

Houston’s Propaganda: ‘Zine – This lil’ poetry ‘zine is not large, but it’s fully qualified! Got SEVERAL good pieces in here, some from “I.N.” friend Scott C. Holstad, others too many to list. One that struck me with the “tone” of the poetry in this effort is “Poem For The Fat Girl Dancing On MTV”, by t. kilgore splake, a “new” poet for me… an extract only, this part of the piece sorta’ summed “it” up fer’ me…

but like dandelion floss buffeted by

strong winds, afraid life will always be

like the cruel endings of early Saturday

morning TV cartoons.

Quite enjoyable read, all the way through! RECOMMENDED! Contact at Severed Image, 8160 Bendell, Houston, TX 77017 Rotcod Zzaj

INDY: “Comic” – For some reason, we don’t get a lot of comics in here… &, I guess this is no exception. This is basically a REVIEW ‘zine for the comic arts. Rather longish (but VERY informative) interview with Jeff Smith (“Bone” comic series), a short on a comics convention, & a smattering of drawings from various&sundry throughout. This is VERY well laid-out, & seems like it’s quite knowledgeable of th’ “ins&outs” o’ th’ comic world. RECOMMENDED. Contact J. Mason, 611 N.W. 34th Dr., Gainesville, FL 32607-2429, or e-mail at  Rotcod Zzaj

Rug Burn Rage: personalZine – Shades o’ th’ sixties (at least shades o’ “my” sixties) carry me back to ol’ virginny – or sumthin’ like it, ennyway! NEAT lil’ half-size description of a trip across “12,000 miles of billboards, roadkill & yellow-dotted lines…”… if yer’ never HAD fantasies about VW buses, headbandz & th’ like, you prob’ly won’t be able to “live” this dream, but I sorta’ “grew up” with such, so this is almost a ’90’s version update of th’ “Woodstock daze” fer’ th’ Zzaj! Layout is a bit “loose”, but in addition to well-written descriptions of varied encounters on this rather long sojourn, there are a coupla’ poems tossed in. MUCH fun & comes HIGHLY RECOMMENDED from Zzaj! Contact at POB 83962, Linclon, NE 68501, or e-mail to  Rotcod Zzaj

This Is Not Here: 7″ (45) Overman/Sleepwalking – These gentz outta’ Boston have a 6 song demo tape – all they sent this trip wuz this 7″… & WOT a 7″ it is! Think they’ve got magnetized metalplate inserted in their braincases that is somehow robotically hooked to servo-fingers KICKIN’ out these metal POWERJAMS! If metal disturbz yer’ mom (& ya’ jus’ WANNA’ piss ‘er off), PLAY THIS! Th’ diff izzat there’s no “standard” lickz here… in fact, on “Sleepwalking”, seems to be a sort of “overtone” setup, makin’ it seem as if itz’ comin’ straight outta’ yer dreamz… er’, NIGHTmares; ah, just looked back at th’ label name – “Surreal Records”! So NEXT time, send the TAPE demo, ok? I want MORE songs to lissen’ to! Strong empasis on INTERNET promotion, somethin’ th’ Zzajman LIKES, too! This is SUPER FINE jammin’, cut WAY ‘bove & all that! Comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED by Zzaj! Contact at 42 Paul Gore St., Boston, MA 02130 or via e-mail at  Rotcod Zzaj

Weasel-MX: CRACKER GASOLINE PARTY – Kevin Wheeler sent this ‘un in from, of all places (somehow th’ self-described “hip-hop/punk rock” just didn’t FIT my image of th’ town; course, I’ll ‘ave ter’ admit, it IS ‘dated’ by about 20 years) LUBBOCK, Texas! WMX playz some POWER hip-hop. To say that this is “energetic” music IS to “lump” it; & this mix just AIN’T “lumpable”… on top o’ th’ heavy loopz/beattrax are some VERY wierd goings on, that assuredly salvages it from what “my” image o’ hip-hop might be, or HAVE been, until scopin’ this one out. Th’ beauty of that on “Cracker Gasoline Party” is that this ain’t just nonsense “rambling”… a lil’ bit o’ thot went IN to these toonz, as evidenced in th’ chorus lyrics from “Dug That Hole”, below:

I know better than this, I beat myself again

Deaf dumb and blind dug this hole I’m in

I know better than that, it’s always there to blame

Someday I’m gonna start to feel my age

Jimmy Eager’s gitarz kick OUT on a few of th’ leadlines… like to hear a little MORE o’ that. Neat “Zappaesque” influence on a couple of th’ toonz at th’ end of side 1 – really WIERDNESS – hey, I do LIKE that; meanz they ain’t stuck in NO rut! Side 2 was just a bunch o’ filler, loopz & such, not much there! Recording levels flux a bit too much for my taste, mebbe’ fix that next time around. All in all, a MUCH fun listen, ‘specially on the real “demo” side (one). Zzaj is UP fo’ mo’, volkz! This one is worth checkin’ out! (Actually, it would have gotten a higher rating, ‘cept for all the filler stuff) Contact at cDc Communications, POB 53011, Lubbock, TX 79453 or via e-mail to  Rotcod Zzaj

Battalion: EXCESSIVE FORCE – Th’ boyz in THIS “battalion” weren’t KIDDIN’ when they put this one together! SUPER POWER, rock yer’ to th’ ROOTZ! A lot of “metal” groupz sorta’ “run together” & despite hyper-energy, come off soundin’ all the same! Well, people, FERGET that! These guys (Lee Davis (vox), Chuck Marshall (lead guitarz), Tony Doan (Bass), Kevin Linn (rhythm/lead guitarz) & Bill Fitzpatrick (drums)) tear ALL of your “impressions” apart & sorta’ “realign” ’em! Marshall’s leads are like what “i” imagine th’ “Silver Surfer” would be listenin’ to as he skates throughout th’ universe, KICKIN’ it! Zzaj blood ain’t been THIS high in YEARZ! It getz th’ Zzaj PICK o’ this issue for “best metal”! Comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Contact at 6700 Lingane, Chelsea, MI 48118-9435 or via e-mail at  Rotcod Zzaj

MISS: A PRETTY MESS – Christopher Adam sent this from the heavily networked Philly group MISS, the trio he’s a member of. Lara Vecchiarello and Steve Seidler’s are the rest of this MOST interesting “mess”. Dance rhythms, a bit ‘eavy on th’ drum machine for my taste, are laid over by Lara’s vox with both taste and insightful lyrical style. This isn’t just yer’ “run-o-th’-mill” syntho-pop, which allowed it to spin quite a bit more than it normally would (I’m on my fourth runthrough as I write this). Clean & crisp recording, lots ov echoey overlays & judiciously applied reverb (really reminds me of PRINCE – er’, wotever’n’l ‘is name is now – in spots, ‘specially on this cut titled “I Know Where To Go – To Feel Good”). In places there’s a really “jazz” kind of influence. Ah, THAT’S it’s attraction for me… sorta’ ’90’s psychedelic dancepop with a bit o’ “spooky” thrown in; th’ kind o’ stuph that very rapidly “growz” on you. I really DO like this. IF you can’t abide by any soundz other’n “scratch” or “screech”, you’ll prob’ly go elsewhere, but this comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED from Zzaj – give yer’ psyche a “treat”! Contact at 822 North 65th St., Philadelphia, PA 19151 or via e-mail to:  Rotcod Zzaj

The Gecko Club: BEEN NOWHERE – A bit hard for me to describe this tape in from the members of “The Gecko Club”, Christopher Collins, Elliot Hilton, Andrew and Thomas Huber and Marshall Tokheim. Inclinations toward pop-rock, yer’ know, real “radioable” type stuph. “Groundhog Day”, by Christopher has very nice lyrics (“Now as I drive down this path, That leads to your door, It’s at this time when I realize, I am welcome here no more”) over a winding plethora of synth, guitar, drums that sticks with you. There are some “formula” influences that are a bit distracting (for me, anyway), but well-played and totally ALIVE guitars rescue the group from non-identity. VERY well-recorded, studio quality stuph, verzure! Rotcod Zzaj

Masque TEN WAYS (Musea FGBG 4116.AR) CD: 53:24 After every 5th or 6th release Musea issues a CD by a contemporary band. Ten Ways by Masque is one of Musea’s recent new music offerings. Masque is a Swedish band that plays music more aligned with New Wave than Musea’s other progressive rock offerings. Interestingly enough Masque sounds similar to an obscure German band Blue China that released one LP Spiritual Beauty in 1983. In fact, both albums feature dogs on the cover. Whereas Blue China was charting new territory in 1983, Masque merely plays a jazzy rock influenced music akin to Blue Nile or Sting. If you are looking for innovation or experimentation, you won’t find it here. However if you like your music slightly more adventuresome than Sting, you will enjoy Ten Ways. [Musea, 68 la Tinchotte, 57117 Retonfey, FRANCE] – Henry Schneider – March 1995

Visitors VISITORS (Musea FGBG 4106.AR) CD: 30:30  Here is a short one-off Musea reissue that deserves some notice. Forget the tacky artwork of the alien invaders, Visitors contains some very strong music. Believe it or not, there are 20 musicians (including 4 keyboard players) and singers (11 to be exact) on this obscure French concept album from 1974. The music bears a strong resemblance to Vanilla Fudge and Deep Purple but there are enough experimental sound effects and studio tricks to keep the music out of the seventies rock idiom. The Gregorian singing that pops up in several places anticipates the gothic bands of twenty years later. The music works on several levels but it may take several listenings for you to get into it. But at 30 minutes, who cares? Visitors is definitely a Musea release to buy, if not for the music, then for Didier Lockwood’s pre-Magma performance. [Musea, 68 La Tinchotte 57117 Retonfey, FRANCE] – Henry Schneider – March 1995

Carpe Diem EN REGARDANT PASSER LE TEMPS (Musea FGBG 4122.AR) CD: 36:54 Here we have Carpe Diem’s long awaited excellent debut album from 1975, studio enhanced and reissued on CD. Despite the Camel and Genesis influences, Carpe Diem created a complex, lyrical, and subtle music blending rock, classical, and jazz themes. The keyboards and saxophone are simply outstanding. Musea faithfully reproduced the original album artwork c orrectly achieving the ‘mirror effect the artist intended, but didn’t accomplish, on the original gatefold sleeve. This M. C. Escher styled black and white art also appears in all its glory on the CD. Despite this excellent packaging, there is one minor error. Musea got the timings right but the song sequence wrong in the booklet. The correct song sequence is Voyage du Non-retour, Reincarnation, Jeux du Siecle, and Publiphobie. En Regardant Passer le Temps is one of the foremost examples of sophisticated French rock and should not be missed by the serious collector. [Musea, 68 La Tinchotte 57117 Retonfey, FRANCE] – Henry Schneider – March 1995

Carpe Diem CUEILLE LE JOUR (Musea FGBG 4127.AR) CD: 42:36 A year after their first release Carpe Diem issued their second LP Cueille le Jour. Now we find the band stretching and exploring the jazz territory of Zao and Soft Machine. The CD opens with the epic Couleurs. Over these 21 minutes Carpe Diem plays music ranging from beautiful acoustic guitar to quiet chamber music. Over the course of the year Carpe Diem honed their skills and produced a more polished release than their debut. This second album demonstrated their extraordinary creative ability with orchestration and melody. They developed a modern chamber music that has since been extended by bands like Universe Zero. Unfortunately for Carpe Diem just as they were hitting their stride, the musical winds of change ushered in punk and the record companies lost interest in this innovative band. Luckily for the us Musea took the effort to bring this excellent music to the notice of a wider audience. [Musea, 68 La Tinchotte 57117 Retonfey, FRANCE] – Henry Schneider – March 1995

Tonart VIER (OFF-SCALE OS04) CD: 64:58  Vier is the fourth and latest chapter of avant garde electronic experimentation from Tonart. Tonart began in 1992 as the collaborative efforts of Conrad Schnitzler, Lars Stroschen, and Jorg Thomasius. Their approach to composition is for each musician to record solo material and mix it with music from one or more of the others. Their first two releases, Eins and Zwei, featured all 3 composers. Their third release, Drei, featured just Stroschen and Thomasius. Now with Vier they introduce a new element to the equation, namely one Andre Ruschkowski. Each of their four releases has a different mood and I think that Vier is their most accessible effort yet. This may be due to the addition of Ruschkowski, unknown to Western ears, but apparently an accomplished electronic musician and winner of several academic competitions. All the music on Vier is based around a 13 minute excerpt, Akonie I, taken from 60 minutes of electronic improvisation by all three recorded in January 1994. There are 10 pieces on the disk: 3 solo pieces, 3 duo pieces, 3 trio pieces, and Akonie I. There are no song titles except for Akonie I, just the composers’ initials for that piece. The solo pieces contain original music from the composer mixed with processed sound material for Akonie I. The duo pieces follow the approach of the solo pieces but with the second composer adding more music and processing. Finally the trio pieces follow the approach for the duo pieces with the third composer adding still more work to finish the piece. The results are amazing. No two pieces sound alike! I want to say that the music is amorphous, without movement or form yet that is not an accurate description. Sometimes it is a slowly evolving movement of searing electronics like Pascal Comelade’s early work. At others, groaning gargantuan metallic structures threaten to collapse on you. My favorite piece, the third track LS & AR, is an interstellar journey where you witness the birth of stars, much like the visual experience of Kubrick’s psychedelic trip through the star gate in 2001. Pregnant women and people with heart conditions should not attempt listening to this CD! But for those of you with a taste for adventure and experimentation, Vier is sure to please. [OFF-SCALE, Auguststr. 19, 10117 Berlin, GERMANY] – Henry Schneider – March 1995

…many, MANY thanks to Henry Schneider; he’s been faithfully sending reviews for “I.N.” (almost) since I started it! Methinks his style provides a genuinely necessary “counterpoint” to my own!

Will Simmons: BEAUTYREST BY SIMMONS – Will’s prob’ly scratchin’ th’ durned WALLS by now… I got this tape in over two months ago from him, & just hadn’t been able to settle down long enuff to DO th’ review. Very “homey” music. & that’s not in th’ “negative” sense o’ th’ word, either… we’re talkin’ “real” D.I.Y. here. Lot of “folk-oriented” material here; remember “Tiny Tim”? Similar, but with a much stronger penchant for “electric” gitarz! Clear that Simmons enJOYs wot’ he & th’ others in th’ various groupings represented here (subtitle is “outtakes, rarities & b-sides – 1991-1994) are doing. Personally, I liked the selections Will sed were from the “Soundtrack for Unfilmed Deepsea Thriller” project – now defunct! “Bongo Fetish” wuz kinda’ cute, too! To many who’ve listened to hundreds of D.I.Y. tapes o’er th’ eons (like yer’ friendly editor), th’ combo of D.I.Y. & folk ‘lectric is a sure-fire combo for “cheeze”. Well, NOT on BEAUTYREST… just good clean FUN wi’ th’ music. Reminds me in some fashion of way-early Tom Wright stuph. There’s a lot of ENERGY here, too – this one’s RECOMMENDED! Contact at Bees Make Honey Music, POB 423, Wilmington, NC 28402 or via e-mail to  Rotcod Zzaj

Jaws Of The Flying Carpet: NOISY MUSIC FOR DANCING – This is unQWESTIONably th’ bestest “Jaws” stuph I’ve heard YET! Zalnikor (Zed?) & th’ boyz up Canada way are tearin’ it UP again, peoples! Oool ‘s on this one, too, ‘long with Mike Hartwell, Giorna Szpakowski, Elmira, Satchel & Johannes Metcalfe (new ones all for me). “Blend Me A Dream” is my favorite track on here, but the recording & rhythmic tightness on here hearkens WAY back to tapes they’ve made like “Goblin Girls” & suchly. Metcalfes’ bass is S-T-R-O-N-G on here & helps to provide a real “framework”, if you will! Live drumz add an “luvva” lot, too! As per usua, there’s a whirlwind of zany phrasings whippin’ ’bout – it’ll be th’ absolute WIERDEST dance YOU e’er went to! No wallflowers at THIS one! Avant-phunk? Had yer’ Unca Zzaj sweatin’ jus’ a bit, lemme tell YOU! If you’ve never had the (somewhat jaded) pleazure o’ listenin’ to th’ “Jaws” – this one is IT! Majickcarpetridetoyell! Asin phroggin’ S-C-R-E-A-M!!! MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Contact at 6397 GLEN KNOLLS DR., ORLEANS, ONT K1C 2W9 Rotcod Zzaj

Dave Fuglewicz: A GENTLE SOUNDING OF CHAOTIC EXTENSIONS – Dave is joined on this TRULY chaotic excursion by Marty Ashmore and Pete Connelly. Suffice it to say that they work VERY well together. You’ve heard me praise Dave’s recordings before, because they are the HEIGHT of electronic improvisation. Really the cutting EDGE! As many of you know (from having listened to hours & hours of such, just like I do), some of the electronic “artists” today are nothing more than “patch” workers, with a penchant for “pop & click” that can drive the listener up th’ proverbial WALL! “A Gentle Sounding” lives right up to its’ title. Tho’ there are spots where it has abrasiveness, most of it is really COMPOSITIONAL in nature. THIS tape gets the issue’s PICK for “best electronic improvisation”! Fuglewicz is a master, in his OWN right… the addition of Ashmore (Roland guitar synth) and Connelly (ARP 2600) drive this to even greater heights than his earlier tapes. You will be AMAZED! Not only is this MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENED – if you’re even the slightest bit interested in TOMORROW’S music & what it will be – GET THIS TAPE! Contact at POB 48191, Doraville, GA 30093 Rotcod Zzaj

Brigitte: 72 HOURS IN SAN FRANCISCO – In from William Barnes, of Aural Adventures Productions, this Akron, Ohio based band plays its’ collective heart out. The tunes? The best word I can think of is “enchanting”. Fairly ‘pop’ oriented, there are six VERY well-recorded pieces, which is notable in itself, as the title was based on the fact that it was a “crash” recording session, over a weekend. There’s a certain “folk” (or “beach rock”) sound to the guitars that’s quite attractive, & th’ drumz have a nice enough ‘punch’ to ’em! Pieces from two periods, ’90 and ’93; I felt the ’93 selections had much more “spirit” to ’em! As per usua, when the music is in th’ more radioable vein, I defer to Mz. Zzaj’s opinion – “yeah, pretty nice, I LIKE it! Keep on playin’ it!” This is my second listen through the whole… there’s a LOT of good energy here – “I” like it, too! RECOMMENDED! In fact, we’d like to hear MORE releases from this label, ok? Contact Aural Adventures, 2081 Revere Dr., Concord, CA 94520 or get in contact with William directly via e-mail to  Rotcod Zzaj

White/Eisenstein: WINDS ACROSS THE WATER – Here is another absolutely STUNNING tape in from Lee Eisenstein (see our review of his”Songs For A Dreamer”, earlier in this issue). This time, Lee guitar is meshed with Brad White’s woodwinds to make for some truly “pretty” music. Relaxing and inspiring at the same time, I found “Winds” to be a bit more ‘staid’ in mood and tone. That detracts not one iota from pure enJOYment of the musics that Brad and Lee cleanly lay down for your pleasure, though. All original compositions, full-bodied, but in the “gentle” mode that can soothe even the wildest of beasts among us. I can’t RECOMMEND this MORE STRONGLY, folks! I’m not one to “mince” words… GET IT! It SHINES! Contact Lee at the address given earlier! Rotcod Zzaj

D.I.Y. News

There are, as some of you may realize by now, literally HUNDREDS of WWW pages cropping up. If you don’t HAVE a WWW browser by now, hesitate no longer! Webbing is the wave of the future, & one of the BEST ways to promote your D.I.Y. efforts.

The D.I.Y. list/newsletter that Bryan Baker was putting out appears to (now) be defunct! What a shame… I think many will join me in my feeling that the D.I.Y. world will be somehow worse off without GAJOOB & Bryan’s list. Guess things come & go, though!

If you produce your own music, in the TRUE spirit of D.I.Y., one of the things you NEED is (at least a little) AIR time! Many have heard me speak about KKUP and Don Campau before, but I’m tellin’ ya’ people, it’s just one o’ th’ BEST shows around today! Don is DEDICATED & makes SURE your material gets AIRED! Write NOW to LONELY WHISTLE MUSIC, PO BOX 23952, SAN JOSE, CA 95153

Another excellent venue for those of you who are doin’ PROG-ROCK is Peter Thelen’s EXPOSE ‘zine… he’s also got a great coupla’ radio shows – contact at EXPOSURE, 6167 JARVIS AV # 150 NEWARK, CA 94560

If you want FOREIGN exposure, try the DEMOTHEQUE. It was defunct for a bit, but my partner Zalnikor (Rotton Kidz) tells me it’s back UP again… ‘zine, radio show, tape archive & much more… contact them at 41 RUE DES PYRENEES, 75020, PARIS, FR

There’s a new show in Columbus, Ohio, called “IN YOUR EAR” that will take your D.I.Y. music and put it up behind local videos from D.I.Y.’ers in the local community… it takes a bit of time to get it ON the air (usually 6 to 8 weeks), but they’ll flash your artist/band name on the credits. Get in touch with them at P.O. Box 3518, COLUMBUS, OH, 43210 Rotcod Zzaj



Once again, I’m in no position to write an actual “rant” this time ’round… some MIGHTY large changes happenin’ to the Zzaj family over the next 3 to 6 months. I don’t want to go in to ALL the gory details, suffice it to say that we “MAY” be movin’ back to crackland ‘fore too long. That will, of course, have some direct impacts on the ‘zine – but it WILL NOT make it fall apart.

I’ll beg your indulgence. I’ve always prided myself on having this rag out ON TIME & not lagging for months at a time like SOME of th’ ‘zines do. Either that, or letting you know what you can expect. The LATEST issue # 18 will be out is October ’95. I believe it’ll be way earlier than that, more like July, still from here in my “Morning Calm” studio. I’d already told Wes that # 17 would probably be the last issue printed there in New Jersey with his help… but I’m now of the opinion that I’ll do ONE more issue from here, & THEN make the move back. Should only take me about a month or so to get set right back up. SO – please do NOT stop sending music, poetry, books & ‘zines in to me for review. It’ll be a bit difficult to keep up with all of them, but I’ll DO it!

In a slight departure from my normal policy of not “advertising” my own works in here, just wanted to let you all know that my OWN music is progressing & coming RIGHT along. WHY do I mention this here? I need YOUR help to get a few tape orders generated, sort of build up the cash reserves for “I.N.”. Some of you may know (& others will not) that one of the reasons this ‘zine has stayed “alive” for the longer term is that I use money from sales of my tapes to help support the ‘zine. Please TELL others that the following tapes (in a TOTALLY new style/vein) are available:

“SLEEPING THE LOAF” – Madpoet John M. Bennett lays eerie voices o’er Zzaj’s slightly “insane” musics

“WROUGHT IRON MUFFIN RANCH” John Sosnowski and Mike Delaney join Zzaj in an instrumental trip in to space that you won’t soon FORGET!

“UNDELIVERED PIZZA” – Live jamz betwixt Spilling Audio proprietor Eric Hausmann & Zzaj… this stuff KICKZ’!

All tapes are $6.00 single-copy, or if you order more than one (at a time), they’re $5.00 each.

This isn’t a “going-out-of-business” sale… “I.N.” WILL survive. I’ll still be ridin’ the netz hot & ‘eavy… but SO many volkz have requested that I keep the “paper” ‘zine going, that I’m determined to DO it. YOUR help to spread the word about Zzaj Productions tapes will ENSURE total survival. For those you know who have e-mail capability, tell ’em to send me a message (to ) for a FREE copy of the latest CATALOG! &, til’ next many THANKS for your help/support!

Rotcod Zzaj





To whoozis,

shuttling back and forth,

there is other news:

from the window of

the public crapper,

a long-passed dog

HAS dropped a load,

dusty towns alternate

in the mud due to recent

unassuming willows,


at the hospital,

sweet ‘n’ sour vertical

columns rise

like DICKIES-little

in the sun.

c Carol Frith

Transparent Fingerprints

Were the hotel any larger,

both ladies would be enjoined

to spend an o’nite gambling

in dread and fear of returning

to the space reserved upstairs



their essence would

(huge as air, you understand)

dissipate, spread too thin


the clerk-reservationist

would not (could not) find

at check-out time their names

on the continuous roll

of butt-wipes he maintains.

c Carol Frith

Friday Night

on a date

with a shy girl

it’s the grage bands

and video arcades

and the great black houses

where they strut and laugh

it’s the middle of the night

c C. Mulrooney

the ads read the same

hungry cunt

seek tongue


feed the poor

children in Africa


feed your dog

this dog food with meat

and watch him shit rainbows

c Adam DiAngelo





a symbolist cabaret or garden

what does an amoeba want

dim bulb the latest electronic thing

they need a life of their own

they do and what the hell

why don’t I just give them one

say boys and girls you’re artists

and one heck of a lot of fun

just mind those teeth and claws

you’re like something out of De Kooning

they play rough and dirty

who have nothing to lose

at Vanity Fair

and down on Broadway

where the lights are low


strange flowers

in the moonlight

or by daylight

flowers strange

it wants nothing

at all

that’s what it wants

too far back

with you

far too far back

even in New York City

lights are a dull tangerine

even in London

nights are dirty

and tired

like the long days

the clatter and eep of a typewriter

that is to my old mechanical

what Jasper Johns is to Picasso

there he is

the greatest American artist

outschmoozing the schmoozers

in black tie

c C. Mulrooney


He didn’t fall on his knees and beg for my lips (fingertips)

I will miss him


another man


Curly hair will replace


I pull a string

and leave it



c Sofia G. blorn


What I once was

(Thoughts come of intense moments,

sudden pleasures,

flashes of light in the night,

the makeup mirror on for nothing,

I’d turn it off, make my way toward the corner where I’d sit and look out barred windows

The achievement lost,

comes back,

goes forth,

comes back,

screeching of metal ‘gainst metal.

You make this all go away.

Like the winds running rocky mountains

you swirl me constantly.

With you comes the scent of freshly made flowers,

the whiteness of flesh that never fades.

c Sofia G. blorn

Sugarplum Head

Bronze baby booties

Sit dusty

On the dank closet shelf

Of my heart

Where dreams of princes

Lie stagnant

Molding my soul

Slaps on my infant bottom

Keep bringing life into me

Delinquent promises

Of buried treasure

Cloud my child’s mind

First lies have multiplied

Into ogres

Shattering my music box

Muddying my stocking

Making a mess of my nursery

c Carolyn Schutten


This silent anticlimax

Deafens me

So that even

A bath of alcohol

A good sweat

Or a pack of tobacco

Cannot sooth

My icy nerves

c Carolyn Schutten

in the folds of this blanket

are shadows and moss

but the only thing I’d placed there

was the pillow on the other end


c Adam DiAngelo

fickle as a ficus in the eye of the beholder

i went through stacks of manuscript

looking for “the moves put on

the masks taken off” which sounds

like a title of mine but of which i have

not a half-life trace of a memory of

meanwhile my wife and i dispute

the order of our daughter’s names

whether penelope rachel or rachel penelope

& i’m still estranged from email egads

four lines followed by a poem

who could love such a jew?

believe such an after belief?

ask the awkwardness question you can

grace is grounded in that

sorry sorry sorry for the sarcass

after a while example ends

you set your beat or the one most you but

of course it isn’t true and after awhile example ends

c jonathan levant




my son has started marking the faces of other boys

when my son is alone i am with him

father i want to build a fire hydrant

a dwarf dragon

that’s why i’m pretending to be ginger

the broken dream catcher

That’s where the pitcher’s mound is

where the fire is

is it breaking one of its pitcher’s sounds

is that fire broken

i hate humpty dumpty

why do you hate humpty dumpty

what did he do to you

he didn’t do anything he just sat on a wall

do it higher all mixed together

c jonathan levant




a word about Benny Goodman

one might say

the futher shores

of America

have a certain


then again why not

a cogitating swing


c C. Mulrooney


Never saw an olde

tv show called

‘Gary Cooper’s Fishing Diary’.

But had a dream anyway of olde Coop

standing by rich mahogany bar

with trout in hand

and he would say:

:yup” in his famous way

then hit dead fish head on rail.

In my westerner dream

this progression

got stuck like

a fualty needle

on olde time record:

Yup/Slam yup/slam




c john alan douglas




that knock on hideaway door

shot and black and nude and almost chocolate

she opened the shared door to the can

and i all wet in bathtub washing

off toronto mire

her breasts were full formation

nipples standing out all the way

to Etobioke

she smiled and asked

“are you having a bath?”

I squeezed my fullsome sponge

and uttered ‘The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner”

and she went to sleep

dreaming of

hogtown johns with lots lots and lots

of credit cards

c john alan douglas


Will my immense

Of reticence

By it’s intents

You quiver

Or strange, rearrange

Your normal?

c Rotcod Zzaj




four to the bar

sixteen bar blues,

settin’ a groove…

usually a

piano, bass

and drums, & that

drivin’ high-hat

struts ratta tat

tat: all those sounds

swingin’ so tight.

half-tones of thirds

and sevenths, ‘blue

notes’ playing on:

walkin’ bass, strums

on & on &

yes, this music’s

exactly who

it is! just jazz:

snapping fingers

to blues-tinged chords

tapping it out,

you know, “you” are

the instruments,

notes together:

so immortal

making moments!

they keep playing

playin’ your way

you can’t help say

yes! yes! yes! yes!

rhythm swingin’

sustains that groove.

singin’ along

your riff sounds clear

you are with it

layin’ it down:

goovin’ so here!


c Alan Harris Yount


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