BASTARD CHOSEN “excretions/menarche” (self-released)

The Brothers Zisman here, offer their very own Double Nickles on the Dime, a two-fer, excretions (2017) on one side, menarche (2013) on the other, for a mere ten bucks.

The cover art for excretions has an H.R. Geiger-esque skeletal humanoid hamming it up as Bastard Chosen’s “Eddie” (famed Iron Maiden skeleton mascot, which made a big fuss in a “Don’t Do Drugs” commercial in the 1980s). However, one may suspect the more resonant antecedent for the BC would be one Glenn Allen Anzalone, famed Verotic Comics publisher and/or singer/songwriter for The Misfits, Samhain, and Danzig.

A rebar and concrete foundation hath been laid upon hallowed ground: the distance between Lodi, NJ, and the Bastards’ former stomping grounds of Rockland County, NY. They have since pack’t up their money and pick’t up their tent for the gold rush of PDX,Oregon.

As for the music, initially what surfaces is a steady rhythm section on a panoramic long distance exploration. Sharp-pitched, razor-picked guitar string-age will leave black-hearted headbangers crying with tears of onion-chopping joy. The band works out the jams/ideas with conversational non sequiturs, ie: track 8, what’s goin’ on(?), to which no one replies. The song title alone reads: J Mascis paraphrasing Lou Reed’s What Goes On, while appearing to be the Marvin Gaye consciousness-expanding anthem. To wit, the subtitle for excretions reads: uncut and hairy/raw dog/early mixes.

The LP menarche’s title is defined as the first occurrence of menstruation, and reveals not a small fascination with cycles of life, bodily function, and a hint of existential gloom. A clear thread of connection between these two efforts is the evergreen song blackbirds, it’s original, (bad acid version), and 1000 blackbirds. The early effort, the one under the influence, opens with a Spencer Davis Group-y, Gimme Some Lovin’ bassline. That follows with excretions album closer, just a chord, an optimistic outro, a finger-snapping jazz-club farewell.

Menarche’s cover art is more of a Macross-era manga via electronic microscope blueprint of a Rorschach breed common dog-flea. In an unusual move, BC put the earlier record on second, and any need for explanation disappears with track one of menarche: “time machine”.

Q: What’s the first thing you’d do if you were Marty McFly, carjacking the Professor’s Delorean?

A: Go back to the Philadelphia of 1960, to witness Dee Dee Sharp performing Mash Potato Time. Next stop is Dee Dee Ramone’s house, Queens, NY.

The track time machine’s burly, hooked-out riff/chorus carves a permanent groove into the ear canal database.

The sorta aforementioned/alluded to: mash potato mash up is a dreamy, come-dance-with-me throwback to the bad-old days of will-you-go-steady-with-me-Mary-Lou… with greasy tempo-shifting. The song’s sequel, (part 2) leans more into an Elvis post-Comeback Special bathroom break.

I’m just sayin’, plays as the influential cool uncle to excretion’s what’s goin’ on, where 1000 blackbirds’ Hendrixy, Creamy, Doors-ly-ness intermittently, gracefully pauses mid-power triumvirate, with Olympic-diver grace and micro-splash.

Running thru the remaining tunes: eye of the storm, a post-hurricane Sandy anthem, a tribute to those who lost their cars and took to safety via inflatable dinghy and hockey stick. Raise your glass, mates! tranny won’t change exhibits wild pitch-shifting>eye in the sky (shout out to Sauron) the slow-burn dirge that aborts without warning. The darkest depths of Mordor.

…a faint ghost of BC remains for the remainder of side b, haunting and taunting.





--Adam Padavano