gary wilson & the blind dates Live At CBGB (LP, £23.95)label: Feeding Tube
"Recorded on a trip to the East Coast in August 1979, this album documents Gary Wilson's semi-triumphant return to his home base. Raised in Endicott NY, Gary moved out to San Diego after recording a series of records that would eventually create his legend. In August 1979, You Think... was the primary record for which Gary was known, and about half the material here is drawn from that masterpiece. The rest of the songs are in a similar mode - prog-damaged lounge music powered by deep obsessions and ass-wide hooks, presented amidst truly bizarre stage elements. What's extra weird about this set is how rockin' the Blind Dates make the stuff sound. The band, although San Diego-based, was actually a bunch of NY State-expats Gary had played with before, whose westward drift has proceeded his own. And CBGB was one of the few clubs at which Wilson's music had been welcome from '77 on, so it really was a homecoming. Recorded through the board, the sonics are great, the music is mesmerising... At the end of side two, someone intones, 'Blind Dates rule.' And if you don't agree by that point, you are a goddamn square. Be gone." - Byron Coley, 2017.
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