• o. rex My Head's In '73 (double CD, £18.95)

    label: Gulcher

    A forty-three-song collection of material from this band that would eventually mutate into the Afrika Korps. O. Rex was a living-room band from Brooklyn, New York. Formed in 1973 by brothers Solomon and Jay Gruberger, they were shortly joined by future Gizmos founder Ken Highland. Ken would bus down to NYC from his home in Brockport, New York to record with the Grubergers on Solomon's cheap reel-to-reel tape recorders. Their output was prolific, although mostly cover versions of Alice Cooper, Grand Funk, Allman Brothers, Mountain, Black Sabbath, '60s garage bands, etc. Fortunately they also wrote original songs, and we've dug up a big bag full of primitive gems for ya. Proto-punk, lo-fi, all that stuff-but deep down a sense of songwriting and rock'n'roll that's often brilliant even as it seems very stupid! But hey, they were young!

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