captain beefheart electricity

discography - bootlegs


bootleg ceedee MAGNETIC HANDS live in the uk 72-80
burnleg england 2002 viper cd 011 promo notes on inlay
bootleg england 2002 viper cd 011 with booklet
time 74:43

note: partner of railroadism



outdoor festival, bickershaw 070572
CLICK CLACK 4:50 the spotlight kid 1972
OLD BLACK SNAKE 3:27 (unreleased cover)
GROW FINS 5:11 the spotlight kid 1972
free trade hall, manchester 010472
PEON 3:03 lick my decals off, baby 1970
GOLDEN BIRDIES / 'more' 2:21 (later) clear spot 1972 / unreleased
university, leicester 010573
ELECTRICITY 7:03 safe as milk 1967
SUGAR MAMA 8:26 (unreleased cover)
outdoor festival, knebworth 050775
ORANGE CLAW HAMMER 3:56 trout mask replica 1969
GIMME DAT HARP BOY 4:41 strictly personal 1968
guildhall, portsmouth 011275
DALI'S CAR 2:05 trout mask replica 1969
BEATLE BONES 'N' SMOKIN' STONES 4:09 strictly personal 1968
the venue, london 121180
FLAVOR BUD LIVING 2:11 doc at the radar station 1980
rotters club, liverpool 291080
NOWADAYS A WOMAN'S GOTTA HIT A MAN 4:43 clear spot 1972
ABBA ZABA 3:43 safe as milk 1967
HOT HEAD 3:30 doc at the radar station 1980
SAFE AS MILK 3:41 strictly personal 1968
DROPOUT BOOGIE 2:43 safe as milk 1967
KANDY KORN 5:00 strictly personal 1968

review 1: the PROMO, a burnleg

sound quality: FAR FROM GOOD (not only on the sources used)
production: poor
lay-out: primitive

captain beefheart - bootlegs - magnetic hands - front promo (burnleg)

HELP! bickershaw: halfway the first title i already urgently need real magnetic hands to heal me, and my tortured ears in particular. HELP! during the second track a disturbing growl from the sound system joins in. HELP! and the third song is hardly audible too. HELP! manchester: well, there appear to be live recordings with a sound quality that is even worse... HELP! leicester: strange, but most of 'electricity' sounds like a totally new song to me (everyone spontaneously starts improvising as if it is a 'mirror man' session - which goes for the recording quality too). HELP! 'sugar mama' is one of those 'cool' blues jams they often played that year and which most of the time are endless, thus boring. though, i must admit that this effort is a bit of an exception because of some great vocal exercises by the captain. HELP! knebworth: this is the part of the festival gig with the best sound, especially during the 'orange claw hammer' a cappella as no accompanying music had to be recorded. HELP! portsmouth: despite a basically good sound quality - compared to the earlier tracks - this clearly is an audience recording, so all the music of the quite enjoyable performance comes from óne speaker. HELP! london: maybe it would have been better to check the p.a. system before the show. HELP! liverpool: okay, all these pieces are stolen from the previously bootlegged concert, so no complaint about the sound quality here. but beefheart is a weak part in the show and despite some great moments this concert always leaves us behind with an unsatisfactory feeling. and, er...: HELP! where the hell does that annoying steady crackling on the last five (!) tracks of this version come from that i don't hear on the original bootleg? HELP! it gets louder and louder... HELP! or are that my brains breaking down? HELP! yes, too...

CONCLUSION: help! help!


review 2: the PUBLIC ISSUE, a bootleg

sound quality: FAR FROM GOOD
production: reasonable
lay-out: beta minus

captain beefheart - bootleg - magnetic hands (live in the uk 72-80 - front public issue
yes, it ís a bit different....

hurrah! someone heard my cry for help and sent me a quite different kind of ceedee. it appears to be the version which made it to the (e)shops as a semi-official release. i have to say, unlike the quickly burned promotional copy (sic!) this other disc:
* is silver coloured in stead of blue / green,
* is a picture plate - of a tape recorder reel - instead of having a home printed ('white label') sticker on it,
* doesn't have a primitive inlay with higgledy-piggledy printed text but a glossy 12-page notes booklet,
* has been manufactured professionally, so doesn't start to destroy my hi-fi speakers.

so that's some improvement, indeed. unfortunately, the biggest annoyance still remains: the bad sound quality. the thought behind this 'uk overview' was to give some examples of the various magic bands, but it rather turns into a parade of demented p.a. systems. and although the idea to bring a scale of live interpretations wasn't a bad one - as reflected by the presence of two a capellas, three instrumentals, and two songs unknown to average fans - the ceedee as a whole sounds too much scattered to give a feeling of listening to a consistent release.

only the longest concert fragment (also the one with the best sound), the six liverpool 1980 tracks, comes close but doesn't take my conjecture away that it should be possible to select some live sets with better sound and more 'possessed' performing. that's about the same problem what's wrong with the booklet. the main text, 'in search of god's golfball', isn't an interesting essay but a plain recollection of someone's struggle to become a beefheart fan, interspersed with some of don's one-liners (as often, mostly in tiny lettering! when will booklet printers finally decide to double the amount of pages and the font size?).

and the enthusiastic description of the tracks veils the fact most of them suffer from a disappointing sound quality....

CONCLUSION an album with such a title deserved a better fate


the later 'american countermove' RAILROADISM

click clack back to the bootlegs or return to the power station

captain beefheart electricity
as felt by teejo