steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
info opinion

Various Artists

"10 Years of Slutfish 1993 - 2003" CDR

Slutfish Records

Genres: psych rock, acid rock, experimental

Slutfish Records
327 Bedford Ave #A2
Brooklyn NY 11211

Aug 18 - 24 2003

For ten long years (an eternity for DIY labels), Slutfish Records has consistently put out the best in vinyl and cdr psych rock releases. Since 1993 they've released a fine selection of acid rock and experimental silliness. 10 Years of Slutfish 1993-2003 is a fine retrospective of the label's work, focusing mainly on recent releases and those from the imprint's first few years. For some reason the bulk of Slutfish's existence, 1995-2001, is barely touched.

But, despite the inexplicable gap, this is a very nice collection of songs. The Slutfish roster is at its best when it's doing 60s-style psychedelic rock music. The first taste we get of the genre is The Wylde Mustangs' "You Can't Tie A Mustang Down," a garage rock cover of the Monkees tune. It's deliberately psychedelic, with acid guitar and those psychedelic, effect-heavy vocals. The Brian Wilson Shock Treatment then takes things into high-gear with the straight-out-of-1968 "Brain of Fire" and Palegreen Syndrome's "You Wanna Be Real" is a nice archive recording of what was supposed to be the first Slutfish record ever (they accidentally sent a different version to the pressing plant); this version is like a more avant-garde Eric's Trip tune. Then, Thundering Lizards belts out one of the disc's best tracks with "Do You Wanna?", which boasts a juvenile yet insanely infectious chorus of "do you wanna get some marijuana?" From 1992, it is acid rock at its best and most distorted; lo-fi allergics, watch out.

Meanwhile, there's lots more to look out for. The Billy Syndrome's live version of "Love Surrender" is positively electrifying, and Urban Outdoorsmen's "Big Crunch" (from their 1994 EP) is home recorded psych at its most daringly melodic. There are also some more experimental moments. PORCELAIN gOD's "Coughing Man 2003" uses samples of people coughing to create a painful piece of musique concrète, while the JFK Jr. Airforce's "Clang!" is an experimental track of guitar and vocal mayhem that belongs in a different galaxy.

This is a very nice introduction to the Slutfish catalogue that might make you want to go out and buy some of the label's other releases. Fans of the genre may be surprised to learn that you don't have to be high to appreciate it. At ten bucks, it's a tad pricey for a microlabel sampler CDR, but the quality music and the fun liner notes make 10 Years of Slutfish a valuable item for fans of the label and newcomers alike.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 19 tracks + 1 hidden, distributed by the label, released 2003]