May 1, 2013

RhoDeo 1317 Aetix

Hello, well tonight's game proved once more why football is such an unpredictable game. Dortmund wasted a string of chances to finish off Real Madrid and in the end had to fear for missing the final, they would have become  a laughing stock for loosing out there tonight. I'm wondering how many Bayern players will be allowed on the pitch tomorrow, surely the UEFA can't expect Messi alone to clear away the mess from last week.

Meanwhile Aetix continues with females in the lead, and today's artist's first performance on stage in London was when she was a pre-teen. She sang in Benjamin Britten's opera, Noye's Fludde (Noah's Flood), at the Royal Albert Hall. Preceding this, the first time she had trod the boards was at the age of three as an Orange Jelly Baby on the Southend Bandstand. The things that come from exposure at a young age....N'Joy

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A performer whose enigmatic and experimental work reflected the strong influence of biblical mysticism and Middle Eastern musical textures, Danielle Dax was born in Southend, England. She made her musical debut in 1979 as the keyboardist in the seven-piece Amy Turtle & the Crossroads; the group disbanded after only one performance, but it brought Dax -- who took to the stage clad in nothing more than a knit cap and lab coat -- to the attention of Karl Blake, who asked her to design the cover for an EP by his Surrey University-based band the Lemon Kittens. Within a week, Dax was a full member of the group; neither she nor Blake actually played music, but they managed to release two highly experimental LPs, 1980's We Buy a Hammer for Daddy and 1982's The Big Dentist, while also establishing a reputation for their notorious live sets, in which they frequently performed sans clothes.

Upon the Lemon Kittens' 1982 split, Blake formed the Shock-Headed Peters, while Dax mounted a solo career. She debuted a year later with Pop-Eyes, a true solo effort for which she wrote and performed every song alone, even handling mixing and production duties and distributing the record through her own Awesome label. While her heavy makeup and colossal hair aligned her with the thriving "Batcave" scene, she steadfastly avoided easy pigeonholing, even making the leap into film with appearances in Neil Jordan's adult fable The Company of Wolves; she also appeared in Chimera, a film by Holly Woodlawn, the photographer whose work adorned many of Dax's record covers. After reuniting with Karl Blake, Dax returned in 1984 with the Jesus Egg That Wept EP, which also featured the first appearance of guitarist/keyboardist David Knight, who subsequently became a frequent collaborator.

After recruiting a live band, Dax emerged as a significant concert draw; a series of singles including 1985's "Yummer Yummer Man," 1986's "Where the Flies Are," 1988's "Cat-House," and 1989's "White Knuckle Ride" -- each slightly more commercial than the last -- also established her as a force on the independent charts, and after the success of 1987's Inky Bloaters LP, she signed to Sire. After 1988's Dark Adapted Eye, a compilation of previous work, she resurfaced in 1990 with Blast the Human Flower, an attempt at mainstream success heralded by a misguided cover of the Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows." When the record bombed, Dax and Sire went their separate ways, and she spent the next several years in seclusion, returning only in 1995 with a new label, Biter of Thorpe.

Her last two album releases were in 1995 and consisted of a career retrospective double-album entitled Comatose Non-Reaction: The Thwarted Pop Career of Danielle Dax and an EP of new avant-garde and almost completely instrumental material called Timber Tongue (both on her own Biter Of Thorpe label). Dax's career in the music business then went on indefinite hiatus and is often referred to as a 'retirement'.

Since 1996, she has worked in interior design and has appeared several times on the BBC interior design show Homefront, where she won their Designer of the Year Award. She is also a qualified garden designer and has worked on numerous projects in that field.

According to her official MySpace page (maintained by long-time friend and former bandmate, Karl Blake), she has done spoken-word performances of her old material in the United Kingdom and in mainland Europe, with backing music written especially for these by herself and long-term musical collaborator David Knight. There is also some talk of new material being written.

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"Today's not the same as before/Starting with a clean slate/Promises of new rewards." This seems an appropriate beginning to Danielle Dax's first solo record, which comes on the heels of a two-album stint with experimental pop group the Lemon Kittens. Certainly, Dax makes the most of this particular tabula rasa. Self-written, produced, and performed, the idiosyncratic Pop-Eyes truly lives up to its promise. Perhaps most impressive here is the way that Dax puts odd musical bedfellows -- from Middle Eastern percussion to doo wop vocals -- next to each other in combinations that should clash, but instead complement each other nicely. Particularly rewarding are the Arabic-flavored "Bed Caves" and absurd yet eerie "Here Come the Harvest Buns."

Danielle Dax - Pop-Eyes (flac 202mb)

01 Bed Caves 3:12
02 Everyone Squeaks Gently 3:33
03 The Wheeled Wagon 5:49
04 The Stone Guest 1:57
05 Here Come The Harvest Buns 2:58
06 The Shamemen 3:42
07 Kernow 4:14
08 Numb Companions 3:57
09 Tower Of Lies 2:48
10 Cutting The Last Sheaf 3:11

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Many have declared this to be Danielle Dax's very best album. Whilst 'Pop Eyes' was a minimalist affair, 'Jesus Egg That Wept' boasts more well-rounded and full-bodied productions. But it's just as equally as strange and ethereal as 'Pop Eyes' - which is certainly no criticism as this is what makes Dax's work so unique and intriguing. Cutting edge experimental music at its very best - and most arty. 'Evil Honky Stomp', a scathing song about black slavery and white supremacy, sounds so jolly when it first kicks in, but the lyrics tell a dark tale. Beguiling and brilliant! 'Pariah' is even better! Opening with a wave of keyboards, this haunting track is one of Dax's most definitive recordings, and captures a compelling vocal performance, which sways from high and soprano-like to a low, almost menacing sound. The eclectic genius that is Danielle Dax is also shown on 'Fortune Cheats'. A startling mixture here, beginning with a range of light, tinkling instruments which sets a macabre tone and dark atmosphere, entwined with a stomping Northern-Soul-like beat and doo-wop sounds. What should be an odd blending, makes for a riveting listen, while the lyrics depict a story of a woman who murders her cheating boyfriend!

Danielle Dax - Jesus Egg That Wept Back In Flac (137mb)

01 Evil Honkey Stomp 4:42
02 Pariah 3:46
03 Fortune Cheats 4:35
04 Hammerheads 3:36
05 Ostrich 4:01
06 The Spoil Factor 4:00

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Recorded: 1st December 1985, 1st transmission: 14th January 1986.
Bass, Percussion – Ian Sturgess
Drums – Martyn Watts
Engineer – Peter Watts
Guitar – Steve Reeves
Synthesizer – David Knight
Vocals, Synthesizer – Danielle Dax
Producer – Barry Andrews

Danielle Dax - The BBC Sessions (flac 85mb)

01 Fizzing Human Bomb 3:39
02 Pariah 3:36
03 Ostrich 3:57
04 Numb Companions 3:20

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This is another interesting outing from Danielle Dax, a woman who's shown a talent for absorbing more than a few world music influences into her quirky brand of smoky pop. Here she picks up on the Beatles' Indian classical influences with her cover of Lennon/McCartney's "Tomorrow Never Knows," a Turkish dervish music in the hypnotic, swirling "Bayou," and melodic power pop in "The Id Parade," the sarcastic opening track. It doesn't always work quite as well as it should, with some numbers, like "Big Blue '82'," falling short of the mark and never quite gelling, and others not quite developing beyond a few good ideas and a nifty rhythmic pulse, as happens on "King Crack."

The nice side is that Stephen Street's production keeps things filled out, giving Dax's very pretty voice plenty of room to work (especially on the beautiful "Daisy," a story of tragedy framed in a light, sweet musical landscape) while filling the gaps in some of the songs with interesting instrumental work. Check out "Dead Man's Chill," with its mix of chugging rhythm guitars, stomping drums (the drum machine work on this album is superb, by the way) and biting lead guitar. When the songs are on target and developed, the result is terrific, sharp material. Check out "Jehovah's Precious Stone" and the magnificent "16 Candles," the closing tale of a lover's tragic devotion. In summary, an excellent shot across the bow -- there's a lot of good music here, and some not so good, but it's worth checking out.

Danielle Dax - Blast The Human Flower  (flac 297mb)

01 The ID Parade 3:50
02 Tomorrow Never Knows 5:15
03 Big Blue '82' 4:16
04 Bayou 4:08
05 King Crack 2:10
06 Daisy 3:55
07 Dead Man's Chill 4:42
08 The Living And Their Stillborn 5:10
09 Jehovah's Precious Stone 5:07
10 16 Candles 5:36

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Anonymous said...

please moooorrre dd

Metagnathous said...

Many thanks for this excellent post. I too would greatly appreciate any more Dax/Blake-related goodness, especially Lemon Kittens, who I haven't heard in a very long time. Always loved the heck out of 'em.

Anonymous said...

Hello,alas I don't have anymore Dax as for the Kittens I checked an old partition(pre 2004) and there they were their complete discography. Lemon Kittens Discography @mp3 151mb in case you are in need to hear them.


Anonymous said...
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Gianni Zhivago said...

Any chance you could repost Danielle's BBC Sessions and if you have the remasters of her first 3 albums on Biter Of Thorpe and/or Timber Tongue Ep, That would be great.

apf said...

Thanks for the re-up of the BBC Sessions, Rho!

VanceMan said...

Thanks for these reups. A really interesting talent.