Swordsmen On The Road

Back in the middle of the last decade Two Lone Swordsmen mutated into a live garage rock ‘n’ roll band with Andrew Weatherall on vocals, Keith Tenniswood on guitar and a bunch of friends helping out including Chris Mackin (Chris Rotter) on guitar and Nick BurtonĀ on drums. I saw them play at Sankey’s but have no photographs. Who took pictures at gigs in 2007? Not me. These two live songs from when they played Brighton have come my way recently and thought some of you might be interested. First up is their speedy cover of the Gun Club’s Sex Beat, which in studio version was on The Double Gone Chapel album.

Sex Beat (Live in Brighton)

Feast was on the Big Silver Shining Motor Of Sin ep, a four track vinyl release in 2004, a scuzzy, amped up tale of handing over cash to the doctor, over a building wall of sheet metal guitar noise. ‘Ein, zwei, drei, vier…’

Feast (Live in Brighton)

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The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 160

This is voodoo priest Louis Romain, from Haiti, photographed in the 1930s. He is the cover star of The Gun Club’s debut album the Fire Of Love and also turned up on the sleeve of Sabres Of Paradise’s Wilmot single. The Fire Of Love’s grooves are shot through with rockabilly, as well as punk, blues, and country.

It’s Friday. Shall we have a drink?

Black Train

Mother Of Earth

I came across this earlier this week, a new band and from Manchester too. The New Southern Electrikk and a dark, sultry cover version of Mother Of Earth by The Gun Club. The band say it’s only a demo but it sounds pretty done to me. Singer Mary Joanna has got one of those voices and the band, former Paris Angels amongst them, cook up a reverb laden stew. Southern gothic via east Manchester. More please.

Deborah Ann’s Got A Tiger In Her Hips

The Gun Club’s first album, Fire Of Love, is a Bagging Area favourite, best played loud. Its best known song is Sex Beat, a prowling four chord romp. Their punk driven country/rockabilly formed a substantial part of The White Stripe’s make up, amongst others. On Two Lone Swordsmen’s Double Gone Chapel album Weatherall and Tenniswood turned in a fine cover version having added  guitars and singing to their electronics. The single version came with a remix of Sex Beat that flipped back to the low key electronics of earlier TLS.

Sex Beat (Remix)

As a bonus here’s The Gun Club playing Sex Beat at The Hacienda in 1983…

And a fan made video featuring Wild At Heart and a whole load of Hollywood dancers…

>Floor Length Hair

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Kid Congo Powers played guitar in both The Cramps and The Gun Club (and Nick Cave’s Bad Seeds) and his album from two years ago, Dracula Boots, got played regularly round here. I’ve just discovered Kid Congo and his band The Pink Monkey Birds have got a new album out, Gorilla Rose. So that’s on the shopping list. This is from a split single from last year (the other side was by Hunx & His Punx. Anyone?), a thrilling piece of garage rock called Floor Length Hair, that makes the hairs on the back of the neck stand up a little.

>The Return Of Friday Night Is Rockabilly Night 17

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A smoking tune from 1958, Jody Reynolds’ slow, spooky, bass riff led Fire Of Love. A seriously good song. So good, Jeffrey Lee Pierce took it’s title for the first, definitive, Gun Club album and then recorded a cover for The Gun Club’s Miami (which I posted ages ago). He looked pretty sharp too.

‘The fire of love
Is burning deep
The fire of love
Won’t let me sleep’

>Miami Beach

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Sticking with American alternative 80s this is The Fire Of Love by The Gun Club. Their first album, also called The Fire Of Love, was an electric punk blues tour de force. The follow up album Miami was recorded with a largely different band and saw Jeffrey Lee Pierce go slower and spookier, and whilst it’s not as good as the debut, it still has it’s moments. The Fire Of Love is an old Jody Reynolds song. None of it really reflects what a stereotypically British view of Miami is, no bronzed bodies and flash cars, more like what Greil Marcus called ‘the old, weird America’. And the cover does at least feature palm trees.

The Fire of Love.mp3