Lost links & Re-ups

On any post, if the link is no longer good, leave a comment if you want the music re-uploaded. As long as I still have the file, or the record, cd, or cassette to re-rip, I will gladly accommodate in a timely manner all such requests.

Slinging tuneage like some fried or otherwise soused short-order cook

19 July 2014

Material Witness

Most accurately Bill Laswell &… (here abouts that would be word-virus cut-up Champion WSB first & foremost).

In 1978 Russian music entrepreneur Giorgio Gomelsky moved to New York City to try opening up the American market to the European progressive jazz-rock bands he was working with, such as Gong, Henry Cow, & Magma. He opened the Zu Club in Manhattan. There he met 24-year-old bass player Bill Laswell & encouraged him to form a band. Three young friends, 17-year old Michael Beinhorn - synthesizer, 17-year old Martin Bisi – programer, & 14-year old Fred Maher – drums responded to Laswell's ad in The Village Voice. They began rehearsing in the club's basement.

The band was called Zu Band until they hooked up with former Gong frontman Daevid Allen. They then took the name New York Gong. Guitarist Cliff Cultreri & a second drummer Bill Bacon joined in the spring of 1979. In the fall of that year they parted company with Allen. The band then took the name Material from the Laswell/Cultreri instrumental track "Materialism" on the About Time album.

By the late 80s, Material was simply another word for Bill Laswell. By 1989, Material had basically ceased performing as an actual band & Laswell began to use the name as a moniker for specific musical projects. The first of these projects was the album Seven Souls featuring William S. Burroughs reading portions of his novel The Western Lands. In 1998, the album was subject to a series of re-mixes by Laswell, Talvin Singh, Spring Heel Jack, DJ Olive, & DJ Soul Slinger. It was released as The Road to the Western Lands.

Another great Material project is Hallucination Engine. On this Laswell teamed up with the jazz legend Wayne Shorter & a cast that included Sly Dunbar, Bootsy Collins, Bernie Worell, various Indian & North African musicians playing traditional instruments & sounds along with many other notable musicians as well as once again William S. Burroughs. The mixture of jazz, funk, blues, rock, psychedelia, & international sounds is enthralling. This essential release is true meditation for the hardcore music fan.

The story of Material & Bill Laswell could go on for pages, but I’ll leave that to others. Just sample some of this music & hear for yourself.

Material – Seven Souls, Virgin V2956, 1989.
(this release was originally tracks 4 – 10)
all decryption codes in comments

bonus tracks -
The Western Lands (A Dangerous Road mix)
Seven Souls (Tim Simenon mix)
Soul Killer (Remote Control mix) – from the Triloka Records 1997 re-issue

Side A –
Seven Souls
Soul Killer

Side B –
The Western Lands
The End of Words

On Hallucination Engine, Material is: Bill Laswell -  bass guitar, loops, beats, & samples; Wayne Shorter - soprano & tenor saxophones; William S. Burroughs – voice; Simon Shaheen – violin & oud; Liu Sola – voice; Nicky Skopelitis - acoustic & electric guitars, electric sitar, & baglama; Bernie Worrell - electric piano & Hammond organ; Bootsy Collins - Space bass; L. Shankar – violin; Sly Dunbar – drums; Jeff Bova – synthesizer: Jihad Racy – ney; Jonas Hellborg - acoustic bass & fretless electric bass; Zakir Hussain – tabla; Trilok Gurtu – tabla; Vikku Vinayakram – ghatam; Fahim Dandan – voice; George Basil – qanoun; Michael Baklouk – daff & tambourine; & Aiyb Dieng - chatan, congas, & percussion.

Material - Hallucination Engine, Axiom 314-518 351-2, 1994.

Tracklist –
Black Light
Ruins (Submutation Dub)
Eternal Drift
Words of Advice (featuring William S. Burroughs)
Cucumber Slumber (Fluxus mix)
The Hidden Garden/Naima
Shadows of Paradise

From the liner notes:
     ''The Road to the Western Lands is a collection of radical mix translations from Material's Seven Souls. This work revolves around the words & voice of the late William S. Burroughs who died August 2nd, 1997. One of our greatest writers whose entire life's work maintained an aggressive, but humorous attack on the values of mainstream society as anarchy's double agent, an implacable enemy of conformity & all agencies of control."
     "Presented here are seven sound constructions derived & mutated from the original sources. Created by methods similar to those used by Burroughs himself with artist Brion Gysin to produce alternate results with writing...(the cut-ups)."

     "This is a tribute to the mind, the life, & the words of William S. Burroughs, the singularity of his vision & his certainty in the power of language. His words are weapons against those who are bent by stupidity or design on blowing up the planet.''

Material – The Road to the Western Lands 2xLP, Mercury 314 558 02-1, 1998.
Side A –
The Seven Souls – Bill Laswell
The Western Lands – Talvin Singh

Side B –
The Western Lands – DJ Soul Slinger
The Road to the Western Lands – Spring Heel Jack

Side C –
Joan’s Haunted Hints at the Gate to the Western Lands – The Audio Janitor
Seven Souls (The Secret Name) – Bill Laswell

Side D –
The Western Lands (A Dangerous Road Mix) – Material



  1. Seven Suns
    Hallucination Engine
    The Road to the Western Lands

  2. Had been looking for one of these mixes for more than a while - and came across this blog through a search engine (that I had used for a while for the same search with no luck) - and clicked and ended up on your log - - many thanks - I first got WSB & his Western Lands from DMG in NYC - along with Hallucination Engine - around 1995 - around the time I became aware of Laswell's Musics. Looked around your site and always appreciate being turned onto new music
    Many thanks for your great musical tastes!!!
    - and you've got a reader from PA - near Philadelphia -
    Thanks again -

    1. As I stated in the 'About Me' at top right, I am originally from the Keystone State myself (although everyone other than PAers seem to think I'm bullshitting about Intercourse).
      Glad to have you aboard. Hope you find some kool musick. If there is anything else you're looking for but don't find here, just let me know. I might or might not...but it's always worth the asking. Thanks for the comment.

  3. OK, la historia de Material que la escriban otros, pero a mi parecer su trabajo más trascendental no ha sido mencionado aquí: Memory serves.

  4. I discover, recently, your blog.
    Many thanks for your great musical tastes!
    It is very nice to have in "e-form" some of my favorite LPs ...and more!
    Warm greetings from Greece!