Thursday, February 16, 2006

Double Dinosaur

Dinosaur L - Go Bang (Francois Kevorkian Mix)
Arthur Russell's late '70s and early '80s output is the stuff of art funk legend. A cellist from Iowa, he wound up in NYC after time spent studying Indian music in San Francisco. He met all of the right music scenesters (Larry Levan, David Byrne...) and began to collaborate and put out records, both in his own name and as Loose Joints, Dinosaur and Dinosaur L. Most of it was minimalist, some of it experimentation for cello and voices, and some of it was art funk and disco and dub. This track sits squarely in the disco column. It starts out minimally - spacy keys, the lovely hiss of the high hat, slowly building up to a keyboard frenzy. Top it off with wacky post-punk vocals courtesy of Lola Blank, then Arthur himself yelling "I wanna see all my friends at once!" All of it is then wrapped in a lovely mix by the legendary Francois K. Art for the feet.

Dinosaur - Kiss Me Again (Version)
From 1978, this was the first disco 12" released by Sire Records, and also Arthur Russell's first commercial release. It's a very groovy disco track featuring Arthur's cello, muted horns and the vocals of Myriam Valle. It's also notable for the great guitar playing of David Byrne - the last couple minutes of the song are all about David's wiggy riffout. Arthur was almost invited to join Talking Heads at this time. Producer Steve D'Aquisto took the tapes of this tune down to Studio 54 one night and got his DJ friend in the booth to play it. The crowd ate it up - all 12 minutes of it. Another classic bit of NYC art disco.(A big HUGE thank you! goes out to Philip for hooking me up with this track...)

No comments: