THINKING FELLERS (UNION LOCAL #282) "Wormed By Leonard" (Thwart)

Ahem, remember me? Yeah, I write for this blog too. Where have I been? Drinking myself dumb, walking aimlessly around my neighborhood much to the chagrin of old women with small dogs who glare at me as I pass. So I decided maybe I should write some tape reviews tonight since I’ve become infinitely frustrated with a song I’ve now recorded upwards of thirty times. And no it wasn’t even the song I’m supposed to finish for the editor of said blog, Mr. Miller. And I probably should record that track, especially since he has been kind enough to offer his residence up for my record release show. By the way Brian, I am 95% sure that Charlie McAlister will be playing that night too. That’s pretty cool right? He moved to L.A. Maybe Peter Moran can give him a job…So why break my silence. I guess it has to do with a crazy tape, which I found at The Smell in downtown Los Angeles in the “mix tape trade” shelf. I was kind of a bastard and didn’t follow the instructions, i.e. I didn’t replace the tape I took with one of my own. (I will later, I swear). Anyway, so what I grabbed was a Thinking Fellers tape dating back to 1988. It’s a quintessential example of Bay Area black-light weirdness mixed up with some South East Asian percussion vibes. On previous listens to Thinking Fellers records I couldn’t quite see what the point was, but this record speaks in a language of garbled gobbledygook that I can understand. The closest thing to straightforward on this record is a stream of conscious free rock rant about walking dogs. In other places it seems like they proceed Amps for Christ in their patented game of melding slabs of noise with folk songs. It’s hard to not get sucked into the hazy guitar meanderings of “Oregon Trail” only to have all well-being dissolved by the jerky treble blasting “Misfits Park.” Each new direction and idea seems effortless and you end up desperately confused. I guess what all this means is that when I replace this tape with another on the mix tape rack at The Smell, it will be unlikely that the recompense will be half as intriguing.