Julian Cope’s Album of the Month

Comets On Fire - Blue Cathedral

Comets On Fire
Blue Cathedral

AOTM #48, May 2004ce
Released 2004 on Sub Pop
  1. The Bee & the Crackin’ Egg (7.45)
  2. Pussy Footin’ the Duke (5.06)
  3. Whiskey River (7.57)
  4. Organs (1.41)
  5. The Antler of the Midnight Sun (4.05)
  6. Wild Whiskey (4.44)
  7. Brotherhood of the Harvest (3.03)
  8. Death Squad (8.33)
  9. Blue Tomb (10.05)

More of the Same Bile

Do anybody know the heavy rock freaks Comets on Fire? If stoners hear this music, shit damn sure you gonna dig the crunch it heaves to the back of your head. This is HEAVY! In favour of comments which warn the return of the awesome collage Comets on Fire’s BLUE CATHEDRAL, I prepared this tribute in great anticipation of their forth coming record.

Ever heard howling at the moon like the mongrel dogs of Comets of Fire? Yeah, it’s everyday for me too, rock fanatics, gorging myself on their errant aberrant muse. A solar wind blowed through the aching heart of their last studio colossus, but the newie grabs handfuls of the moon and snorts at the gusset of the menstruating Muse. This ain’t no garage band, grandma!





Try first the eponymous LP COMETS ON FIRE, follow then with the insane second record FIELD RECORDINGS FROM THE SUN. Chase that with either the bootleg of noise called BONG VOYAGE or the radio sessions album LIVE ON W.F.M.U. on Head Heritage’s mid-price Fuck Off & Di, or maybe just grab mittfuls of this new from Sub-Pop BLUE CATHEDRAL with fucking riffs from a mighty warrior on acid. This BLUE CATHEDRAL record is under, over, sideways, down wards, ever evolving with chiming racket of guitars, devices and a drummer called Utrillo Belcher who is sometimes two drummers and both think they are Keith Moon. Lead guitar and rhythm guitar at the same time with collision of feedback and hoary blues riffs. Rocks like Scorpions’ ‘Top of the Bill’ without cliché. Rolls like Creedence’s ‘Pagan Baby’ without stint or moderation. When Monoshock playes Von LMO thru the WARRIOR ON THE EDGE OF TIME filter there is a result for rock’n’roll. When Amon Duul 2 space-fucks VITAL period Van der Graaf, and ‘Superficial Crossroads’ of Sir Lord Arthur Brown’s erratic ecstatic Kingdom Come wears Thor’s stackheel boots there is a result for rock’n’roll. When the doo-doo chasers of Dr. Comets on Fire and his Too Hairy Night Nurses hijack all of this progGNOSIS, without thought for callories consumption or fat content ingesting this hyperdelic armoury (and more, schmuckers!) and shoot it up into my veins, I occupy in the world the larger place. You will, too, dangerous lovers of obliteration across the nation. Excellent fuck for the head. Excellent brutalising for the inner Kinky. Excellent sounds to stare at the star-bejewelled bedroom ceiling as you sink within fumes of pot and bedroom disappearing into background of your life. Sometimes electronics of old time synthesiser pushes lead guitars into outer space and riff ever revolving begins again. Thinking am I still alive you race for vinyl to swap side over, but only in your head. Reality? You are not living in reduced circumstances, baby brother… This is CD-land, Old Timer. You are sucking at the taps of the earth Mutha, porous as Spongebob inflating in Sandy Cheeks’ living room. But Dr. Comets on Fire has turned you upside down and inside out and you now are… Doombob – sucking in the goodjuice and s-s-s-s-s-stuttering like Randy Bachman Turner Overdrive. Coz U ain’t seen nuthin’ Yet! And you are still on the bed unable to move. Excellent. For me Comets on Fire are an sect malignant of powerful desart magical and worship, and occupy in my head the larger place. To Comets I will be the lemming, and myself lead astray. Even Comets’ songs titles occupy in my head the larger place. Get these muthas for song names: ‘The Antler of the Midnight Sun’, ‘Brotherhood of the Harvest’, ‘The Bee & the Crackin’ Egg’ – that last one’s a myth I ain’t never heard before!

Unlike much current experimental nonsense, Comets ain’t bourgeois frit-to-have-a-tune ramalama, and is therefore thankfully much more appealing with the music of psychedelia and, for some, the maximum beginnings of experimental metal. For some perhaps, almost jazz in places but not for me. ‘Pussyfootin’ the Duke’ sure is Faust playing Zappa’s LUMP GRAVY, but what’s better than Zappa refracted through the bong? Too long we have awaited this newly recorded LP, and I have had to entrust my spirit to this sect’s endless string of live bootlegs (malignant and devilish). If there’s a problem for me it’s not enough of the Miller larynx – I NEEED that voice, that Ray Charles of the Underworld, that stratospheric SLADE ALIVE Neville Holder ‘Get Down Get With It’, that sweet assassination of the 13th Floor Elevators. For this mainly instrumental LP to always attract the attention, I have no doubt of its place in the modern world. For me, Ethan Miller and Ben Flashman and Noel Harmonson and Utrillo Belcher is an sect malignant. Allied sorcery and nourisher of dread. For many years of the future, this band of brothers will also be a brand hallucinating which occupied in mine head the larger place. Inclusive here being the magical synthesizer wars of drums and guitar, also piano and organ newly arrived to stew up the sound further. These magic battles of sound and vibration also occupy in my head the larger place. This is Comets on Fire. So rejoice with me lovers of the music. Here is great tipsy principal coming from the far west, thousands of miles of sea and landmass from where I reside. Perhaps it’s the great monoliths of the Avebury ring picking up the rage of Messrs. Miller, Harmonson, Flashman and Belcher. During World War 2, Arthur C. Clarke was stationed here at Yatesbury only one mile from where I write this down. If 2001 A SPACE ODYSSEY was conceived in this environment, what better place for picking up the refuseniks stomp-a-thons of Comets on Fire? For me, this is a band Wonderful, is the highest, is anything, is an Sect which some follow for ever and ever.

Death Squad

Sirens and warning robot female voice say: ‘Alert… Ben Flashman, your bass is too loud.’ Flashman says get out the way. Stand aside it’s the fucking real U.S. army and there is four of us. A four man army always works if you got the right four. Ask Hernando Cortes, ask Moctezuma and kick Neil Young’s hippy ass (Comets on Fire are greedy and makes me chuckle coz they sure is sore losers and hate the hippy… that free man, that free). Four man army can destroy all in its path. Especially on the night raid and here is Special Agent Ben Chasny on the tippytoe sneaking into battle making acoustic love and delicate as the Japanese geisha girl. Beyond the rages of lead guitar and male-strummed bass mentality, we cannot expect their genius to incorporate organ and chords! But they do such things! Is this the same band? Yes and yes again… Of course, we must all wish with delight that BLUE CATHEDRAL will be a big ‘Hit’. So I say Explore it, pick up at least 1 copy. Get out again. Willingly heal this Knave New World of the urban killing fields. No more war! No more war! Get Comets on Fire peak experience rock! I’m thankful for your attention. No more stupid George W. Get back under the bottle says Comets on Fire. No blues only explosions. No more war. No more war. Get Comets on Fire peak experience rock! I’m thankful for your attention.