The JBC Analogue Wildlife Sampling Tendency
present Illuminate (the difficult tenth)
Label: Creation Records Catalogue: CRECD182
Engineered: Max Reed
Production: David J.
Built on a swamp, the natives will tell you.
"The Nene Delta" I've heard it called; or "Murder Mecca
of the Midlands"; or "Chickentown."
Anyone who's ever really thought about the place feels
it deep inside; somewhere in Northampton lies the Heart Of
Abington Square is more of a triangle, a wide and windy
expanse where, amid a welter of traffic islands, the
Kettering and Wellingborough roads converge. Marooned on
one such islet stands the atheist M.P. Bradlaugh, still
wagging an admonitory finger at those who would buy their
convictions in bulk. He was refused his seat in Parliament
because he was not prepared to swear an oath on the Holy
Bible. Notwithstanding which, the people of Northampton
persisted in electing him over and over again. Eventually
there was a riot in town, and the Army had to be sent for.
Recently a sad priest, who had clearly lost his flock to the
church of medicine and found the time weighing heavy on his
hands, suggested that the statue of Bradlaugh was a godless
example to the citizenry and should be pulled down.
On high days and holidays members of the Jesus Army sect
parade around town in paramilitary garb; some of them could
knock poor Bradlaugh down with their breath.
Perhaps they might pause to look for their special kind of
convert in the War Memorial that looms behind Bradlaugh on
the largets of the chain of islands. Standing long and low
on its concrete football feet, it is inhabited largely by
advanced cider technologists and those with a nostalgia for
the golden days of glue. Cars, lorries and buses wheel
around between the islands in a bewildering fashion; it is
possible that some of the denizens of the War Memorial have
been trapped there for some time.
Across two busy lanes of traffic, at the north-west corner
of the square, stands a bright new building. It has huge
glass windows, for it is a motor car showroom. All the cars
in the show room will cost you more than a house round these
parts. The staff inside, as visible to passers-by as the
vehicles on display, are well turned out young people, and,
in an incongruous effort to bestow a human touch upon their
workplace, they have installed there a large toy leopard.
Or jaguar. Cars of destiny - the JBC salutes you.
The November light begins to dim. Soon it will be time to
spill out of the Racehorse and thrill to the display of
festive lights on the jeweller's shop. But in an alley
around the back, there is work to be done. A small man with
a bald head is standing in the remains of the afternoon sun,
holding a ferocious looking whip, the handle of which
appears to be the forelimb of some kind of deer. He is
surrounded by microphones and a knot of inquisitive small
girls. A taller man with long hair calls to him from the
roof above: "You are making... a film, ja?"
For something strange is happening at The Lodge. An unruly
association of aging sociopaths is gathering here to commit
their feelings to magnetic tape. Here, as close to the very
Heart Of Darkness as analogue equipment will permit, the JBC
squander Kremlin gold on honeyed dum-dum shells and doomed
archaeological relics through which to filter their erudite
and sickened communiques to the world beyond their most
And you uncannily, and holding now the results of those
strange days on Abington Square. Beasts and super-beasts,
phantom truck rides through East and West, the living and
the (jackal-headed) dead, faith and delusion, The Fear Thing
and a whole new theory of earthly evolution. With glass
Real stories with real airbrakes - captured on an intrepid
expedition which took Herr Doktor and his trusty tape
machine deep into the very bowels of the cavernous bus
station early one Sunday morning. (the time at which most
Come trawl the zeitgeist with the JBC, where it's
one-man-one-stick, and a bed of rice really is a bed of rice.
Listen, if you will, to these stories from Abington Square.
Kathie, David, Max, Robert, Emad Salama (Patron of the
Arts), Nick Burson, Eddie the Brick (Opsiag & Distributie), Sue
Pearson, Mark Edwards, Julian Poole (for brand new AC30), Blind
Lemon Johnson and Jane the Pain, Paul Williams, Botty, Sumo,
Mister H., Werner and the Fraternity of Saint Hubertus,
Love And Rockets, Strangelove, Stranger Tractors, President Bush,
Diversion, Ubu Swirl, Joe haskins, Tom Hall, Susan, Ariane,
Clemence, Adelaide, Michel, Roselyne, Daniel, Simone,
Sophie, and the new one, Toby Egelnick (bespoke layouts),
Anne Joly, Paul Mulreany, Steve Winkler, Richard Formby, Lucien Borderline
and Wonderflox, Jasmine, Lisa the
Von Daemmerung Brothers,
Colin, David Whittemore, the Institute
of Snakes, Paul Stanton, Uncle Dave and the Family Shed,
Cafe Pacifico, Wolfgang Tschegg, Robert Goodman, C.D. Mann,
Michael Holloway, Steve Waring, Uli, Michael Horton-Jupiter,
Sydney Meats, Slurps Cafe-Bar, Screaming Mimi, H.H. Munro, Blair
MacDonald, the Racehorce, Alex Chilton, Barry Everitt, New
Mark, Alan McGee, James Kyllo, Slaughter, and all our
"The adept had to become justified.
The justified must then become illuminate."
New JBC lp duly completed in secure Northampton location.
1994 live line-up stumbled through a series of tunes and such under
Butcher's direction, aided and abetted by a number of the usual
suspects; Alex Lee on guitar, Alex Green on saxes, that sort of thing.
Max Read was engineer for the session, and he also
contributed a lot of the backing vocals. He is a good looking chap,
non-smoker, very able and agreable. Judge Curtis was on hand to play
the Hungarian Stock Whip.
"Where did you get that?"
"I got it from Jane."
"Jane the Pain, who do you think?"
A chap from Stranger Tractors called Bolly played dijeridoo on one
number. Writer currently unable to establish JBC motives behind this.
Musical Dave, of Northampton combo Ubu Swirl (Do they know that the
JBC call them "Hobo Swill"?), contributed a spiffy guitar, and there
were further vocal contributions by friends and family. The WOLFS,
I am assured, are not a sample. The Butcher mixed one or two of the
shorter tracks, but the vast majority of the mixing was handled -
in his own inimitable style - by producer David J..
David gave the impression that he was having a whale of a time.
The JBC themselves are agreed that "Man 0f The Match" on this record
has to be Dooj Wilkinson. Apart from dismissing his bass parts in about 36
minutes, he also contributed guitar and some astonishing backing
singing....and he plays the SYNTHESISER! Moves instituted by the
drummer to entitle the album "DOOJ IS COOL" were, however, swiftly
and brutally suppressed by the ruling junta.
The Bishop Says
The Jazz Butcher Conspiracy's new long player has been titled,
mastered, cut, approved, decorated, roached and smoked. After lengthy
(like, stupidly lengthy) deliberations, the title finally settled
upon is "Illuminate" (which is to be pronounced, in order of
preference, i) as an adjective, like "illiterate", ii) as the Italian
feminine plural of "Illuminati" or, iii) if you simply must, the
obvious way) (see how useful advance information can be.. imagine how
you will be able to laugh at your poorly-advised friends when they
call the record Illumin8 like the bourgeois proles you most certainly
aren't). The discussion was diverted from its original course with
the arrival of Jean-Pierre Loonie's artwork, which features (as
alluded to in "Cute Submarines") candles-a-gogo, and a religious
lunatic from, we are assured, Idaho with rather less sartorial
wherewithal than might be considered...erm... decent. It was this
latter factor which swayed from our original "final" choice of
"Beasts and Superbeasts" for, perhaps a little rarely for the JBC,
taste had to prevail. The mastered version sounds markedly better
than the original mix, a fact for which we are all grateful, and we
now have some hopes for people actually liking this waxing (as Fishy
said to me on the telephone only the other day, it's right up the
Jazz Butcher fan's STUPID street).