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babysue comic strips, News, Views and Perspectives & Notable New Releases
November 2023: News, Views and Perspectives
* Cherry Red Records has just released a box set containing the complete recordings Lene Lovich made from 1978 to 1983 for Stiff Records. Although her musical career was brief, Ms. Lovich made a lasting impression on many people. Her bizarre look and even more bizarre facial expressions made her too extreme for the general public. But fans of the underground went apeshit over her music and shows. She was kinda like Kate Bush mixed with Grace Jones, Siouxsie Sioux, Devo and L.S.D. Anyway, the box set is entitled Toy Box: The Stiff Years 1978 - 1983. Lene was so very far far far ahead of her time. Hopefully now more listeners will revisit her body of work and realize how profound the music is. * If you're looking for a truly superior stop motion animation experience, you won't do any better than The Puppetoon Movie Volume 3 (blu-ray). Animation fans the world over can thank Arnold Leibovit for restoring George Pal's wonderful early creations and making them available for the world to appreciate all over again. If you have never seen Puppetoons, you won't believe your eyes. Pal engaged in a very early form of animation that involved creating individual wood puppets for each frame that was shot. As a result, thousands of these little wooden puppets were created for each animated short. The end result is a visual feast and a unique entertainment experience like no other. Also highly recommended are Volume 1 and Volume 2 but, sadly Volume 1 is no longer available. Get Volume 3 while you can. This one includes a beautifully designed colorful booklet with all kinds of cool information and great photos. HIGHLY recommended. There are few things in life as ultimately fascinating and uniquely rewarding as Puppetoons. * Speaking of great animation... This month the folks at Warner Bros. release even MORE meticulously restored Looney Tunes that were previously unavailable for home viewing. Entitled Collector's Choice: Volume 2, this blu-ray is an instant MUST HAVE. No one in their right mind could ever get enough of these cartoons from the Golden Age of animation (1940s & 1950s). Let's hope Warner Bros. continues with the Collector's Choice series. Vintage Looney Tunes are THE BEST. * Have you ever wondered why you wonder? If you haven't, you might wonder why you don't wonder why you wonder. If more people were concerned with the concept of wondering they might wonder why they didn't wonder about wonder decades ago. Others may simple feel that they don't want to wonder at all. Whatever suits the beast is best, and whatever best slaps the nancy tokens is okay in the real world. Or at least that's what the sages are saying today. * If you enjoy hearing cool obscure music you just might get a nifty bang out of the latest album from Scan Hopper. Entitled Covissa Nova, the album features eleven curious compositions. The band is comprised of Scott Hopkins, Bella Fantasma, Guy Drummond, Jen Miller and Jon T. Hopper. The album is being released on the band's own Simplexity Records label. * The Computer Students label always impresses us. That is once again true with the label's latest release, an album entitled Fresques Sur Les Parois Secretes Du Crane by the band Cheval De Frise. Intriguing and decidedly different. * The Horse / Shish Kabob Dream. This is easily one of the stranger dreams of 2023. I was hosting an outdoor breakfast for six people. When the food arrived, it turned out that everyone had ordered the same thing...Apple & Bread Shish Kabobs. But they weren't brought by waiters or waitresses...horses were galloping all around us carrying the Shish Kabobs. I kept thinking that it wasn't the best breakfast food in the world -- chunks of bread and apples that weren't even cooked? But I kept telling everyone that it was amazing we all ordered the exact same thing because if just one person had ordered a regular breakfast it would have ruined the whole experience because that would have required a table and utensils. It might not have been the most nutritious meal ever, but everyone seemed to have a wonderful time mingling with all the cool horses and consuming their Shish Kabobs. If this dream meant anything, I have no idea what it could have been. * Fans of Classic Progressive Music should note that a hefty new Camel box set has been released this month entitled Air Born: The MCA & Decca Years 1973 - 1984. This is one of those exhaustive sets that includes an overwhelming amount of material. Spread across 32 discs (including blu-rays) are 382 recordings by one of the finest progressive rock bands of all time. Probably more than the casual fan would want, this set is obviously targeted toward diehard Camel fans. Though they weren't as financial successful as others, Camel has been and continues to be a favorite among discerning listeners. The box set is being released to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the band's debut album. * There's another essential viewing blu-ray experience just released by the fine folks at Thunderbean Animation. Flip the Frog by Ub IWerks: The Complete Series is absolutely FANTASTIC. Compiled from the best possible sources, this double disc set is a must-have. Ub IWerks is credited with drawing Mickey Mouse and illustrating the first animated cartoons, despite the fact that most folks mistakenly believe the mouse was created by Walt Disney (you can read the full story elsewhere, it's all over the internet now). It is particularly sad that Ub rarely receives the recognition he so rightly deserves. His difficult name probably didn't help matters. Shortly after Mickey Mouse was born, Ub left Disney and began working on his Flip the Frog series which, until the last few years, had almost gotten lost in the shuffle of things. Thankfully that's all changed now. The folks at Thunderbean have done an exceptional job restoring these cartoons so that they can now live on forever. Wonderfully innovative stuff. * You can never go wrong witih Paradiddle Records releases. The label has just released a new album by Pete Mancini and Rich Lanahan entitled Silent Troubadour: The Songs of Gene Clark. Together with Bill Herman on drums, the duo presents their interpretations of ten Clark classics. Precise and direct stuff. * Olympia, Washington's one man band The Lamplighter has a new EP out entitled Mim: A Wizard's Duet. Cool smart and inventive songs. * Blood tests now require more. A lot more. Once upon a time a small amount of blood was sufficient for doctors to test for various issues and problems in humans. But times have changed and the average annual test will now require a gallon of blood. This may seem extreme, but when you have to check for so many different things you need a lot of blood to perform the tests. Some have expressed concern about the body's reaction to such a large loss of blood, while others realize that we all must simply do what we all must do. * Do away with pennies and rename nickels pennies. Now that the one cent coin is worth virtually nothing, the time has come to make a change. Pennies will go out of circulation and nickels will be called pennies, but they will still be worth five cents as opposed to one. But, you may ask, what becomes of nickels? No need for concern. Nickels will still be there and continue to be in circulation. Only the name and the amount changes, everything else stays the same including the size and number on the coins. * Artificial Intelligence becomes organic. Everyone continues to express concern about the rapid rise of Artificial Intelligence. But what are they really concerned about...? The problem with Artificial Intelligence is the fact that it is artificial. So what can be done? Simple. Make it Organic Intelligence instead. Everyone agrees that organic is better than artificial. So once intelligence makes the transition to organic all of our problems will be solved once and for all. * Kirsty MacColl has always been a top favorite here in babysueland. And now hopefully more people will become aware of this amazing lady's music. A box set containing all of MacColl's recordings comes out this month courtesy of the fine folks at Universal UK. Entitled See That Girl: 1979 - 2000, the eight disc set features all of Kirsty's albums plus a variety of additional rare tracks. As many will remember, MacColl died in a boating accident while saving her son's life. Her presence is still sorely missed, yet her wonderfully upbeat melodic music continues with a life all its own. *
November 2023 Notable New Releases
Dave Kuchler - Love + Glory (Kool Kat Musik). Daystar - The Early Years EP. John Devlin - Next In Line (Ruthless Flowers Records). Marcus Lowry - Time, Time, Time. Jeremy Voltz - Running Away. AWavez - Instrumentals I. Waking Bear - Talked With The Galaxy EP. Thrift Store Halo - Live and Unlearn EP (Hi-Beam Records). Lilly The Poodle & Bobby The Trouser Inflation - Crap That You Don't Get No More (Lifty Trouble). Psychotic Youth - Happy Songs (Kool Kat Musik). Sour Sucker Mother Kingdom - Rowdy Tick Tock Party (Growl-A-Matic). Matt Bunsen - I Am Consumed (Earth Monkey Records). Phuture Memoriez - Play Cobra (Nerve Wracking Collections). The Night Terrors - Hypnotica: Composition for Theremin and Electronic Music Synthesizer (Disdain Records). Darryl Kissick - Goodbye Patterns. Haidee - This Shouldn't Be Typical. The Mop Tops - Running Out of Time (Kool Kat Musik). Don Campau - Stolen Spectrum (Lonely Whistle Music / DonCampau.bandcamp.com). Degrees - Pt. V (Aenaos Records). SWiiMS - Into The Blue Night. Lisa Reagan - What We Need Is Here (Stillpoint Records). Apryll Aileen - Bad Things. Torn Boys - 1983 (Independent Project Records). Diamond Hands - Cookie (Kool Kat Musik). The Portable Color Twirls - Slices of Nice Pies (Twenty Twenty Too Too). Sandra Snort - Little Snickers (Trappy Ooh Proper). Skip To My Skip - Two Times Fifty Equals Six (935-JX-787988GH). Arguments - Let's All Have Us (Ribsy Dum Dum). Flowers With No Tops - Custard Brownies (Punch Luncher). A Deer Named Dear - The Time is Near, Dear (S With Line Through It). The Bad Children - We Represent Us All Because We Is (The Obvious Planet Trust). Shawn Cutts - Almost Still. Baby Jey - Crop Circles. Damage - [V] (Kill Shelter). Nick Kizirnis - Quiet Signals. Lise Barkas & Lisa Käuffert - Lo Becat (Morc Records). Roxane Métayer - Eclipse des ocelles (Morc Records). One Glory - Therapy. Druid Fluids - Then, Now, Again & Again. WonderCurrent - WonderCurrent. Trunks - We Dust. Gintsugi - The Elephant In The Room (Sono Music). Ajay Mathur - Blow My Cover. Stickman - Cyanide Smile (Criminal Records).