The Gaslamp Killer - All Killer
Many labels put out sampler discs to expose their repertoire to the world. Some are really good: the early Bella Union ones for example showcased a dazzling array of new artists. But good or bad they're all much of a muchness in being just a collection of tracks. So it's top hats off to the gentlemen at Finders Keepers Records for trying something a bit different.
Finder Keepers are the Indiana Jones's of the vinyl world, uncovering rare, lost or unheard tracks and polishing them up to put on display to the modern world. This is a compilation of tracks from the first 20 of those releases. A lot of the material here is over 40 years old, but they've recruited young scamp The Gaslamp Killer to blend the tracks together, 64 of which appear on this disc in a microcosm of mixes within mixes. The material varies from Japanese choreography records, space-age Turkish protest songs, Czechoslovakian vampire soundtracks, Welsh rare-beats, bubblegum folk, drugsploitation operatics, banned British crime thrillers and celebrity Gallic Martini adverts.
It's impossible to pick out a single track for analysis, as knowing what is playing at any time would require an encyclopedic knowledge of the label's output. Suffice to say the bulk of the material here is utterly amazing. As a fairly well versed collector of records I had not heard of a single artist on this collection. When I played it through the first time I was leaping up to the CD player trying to work out who was playing in a hope of adding them to my shopping wishlist, whilst Mrs Mules ran around hiding the credit cards. This isn't stuff Spotify is going to be suggesting you listen to, this is magical stuff and it's a pleasure to be exposed to it!
It's not fair to talk just about the content as the skill of the mix is incredible, a fantastic journey through musical history and tour guides don't come much better than The Gaslamp Killer. If you have any interest in music you are going to want to hear this. Just be prepared to be dipping your hand into your pocket several times after!