Jazz Butcher S/D

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I've been listening to Jazz Butcher records all day and have especially been taken with Illuminate and Condition Blue which I had never heard before until now (only had the mid-80s stuff from the Big Time Records days).

Anyway, I searched around for what others here had to say and didn't see a S/D thread. Therefore...

Chris Barrus (xibalba), Thursday, 23 January 2003 05:30 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

i've only heard one record from the Glass era ("Marnie") which I didn't like all that much. But the latterday Creation stuff I've heard is quite good. They even had a minor radio hit here in Australia after Maynard F# Crabbes started flogging "She's On Drugs" on morning radio..

electric sound of jim (electricsound), Thursday, 23 January 2003 05:33 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Ever so great, though I've only heard a few albums myself. But the devil is indeed my friend (when I'm not falling apart in bars, since I like to suffer for my art).

Ned Raggett (Ned), Thursday, 23 January 2003 05:36 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Everything the JBC did was gold. I'm a big fan of Illuminate & Condition Blue .. Condition Blue is considered by many to be the masterwork ... Not too many people like Illuminate, although I think it's fantastic - Though I find that I listen to A Scandal in Bohemia & Distressed Gentlefolk more often.

.. and "Marnie" is a great song ... but "Girlfriend" is better...

dave225 (Dave225), Thursday, 23 January 2003 13:09 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Search: pretty much everything on Glass. (Scandal in Bohemia, Sex and Travel, and Distressed Gentlefolk in particular). Fischotheque achieves brilliance. There are still some nice moments on the other Creation-era records, but there's nothing that's quite as consistently great after that. Rotten Soul, the Pat/Max/Owen "comeback" record is actually pretty good.

Destroy: any of the live albums. They're crap. Oddly enough, any live boot is superior.

Also seek out Max's two solo records.


TMFTML (TMFTML), Thursday, 23 January 2003 16:54 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

What's the difference between the Jazz Butcher and the Jazz Butcher Conspiracy?

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Friday, 24 January 2003 02:44 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Nothing. They were using interchangable names while Will Oldham was still making model airplanes and jacking off to the Superfriends.

TMFTML (TMFTML), Friday, 24 January 2003 15:27 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

I'm partial to Fishcotheque myself, because it was the first Butch I heard. Bloody Nonsense is a great introduction to the earlier material, if you're in a country that has it. I liked bits from Spooky and Cult of the Basement (la la la la la la la la, SHE'S ON DRUGS). I've never understood the appeal of Distressed Gentlefolk though.

Sean Carruthers (SeanC), Friday, 24 January 2003 15:38 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

i always did like Cult of the Basement, too, though it's definitely a reord on which some moments are much much stronger than others.

bucky wunderlick (bucky), Friday, 24 January 2003 19:22 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

I believe the CD comp of the Glass Records-era material was reissued not too long ago -- get that. Alternately, I'll second the Bloody Nonsense recommendation. Both have "Big Saturday" and "Southern Mark Smith," among other top tunes.

Jen (nstop), Friday, 24 January 2003 19:32 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

There are two Glass-era comps presently available: Fire Records "Draining the Glass" and Vinyl Japan's "Cake City." There's some overlap of the tracks, so you may have to get both, depending on what you're looking for.

TMFTML (TMFTML), Friday, 24 January 2003 19:39 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Ah, I was thinking of the Fire Records one.

Jen (nstop), Friday, 24 January 2003 20:15 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

She's On Drugs got decent radio play, or atleast in the states when it came to college radio. I hadn't heard much of this band other than that song, until I found all of their releases on vinyl at a West Virginia Goodwill for 30 cents a pop. Brillant stuff, and a horribly under rated band.

mallory bourgeois (painter man), Friday, 24 January 2003 23:34 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

i once read an nme interview where JB said he named himself JB as inspired by THE NAME OF THE BAND I WAS IN (= the jazz insects, active oxford area 1981-83, microfact fans) (discography = one undistributable single, 'elephants', on our "own label" = haha a big pile of like 987 unsold singles in satch's loft)

i didn't much like the few things i heard by him, but then i didn't much like the music the jazz insects made, so that figures....

mark s (mark s), Saturday, 25 January 2003 13:22 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

ten months pass...
Anyone know the name of the Jazz Buthcer song with that sound in it that resembles a submarine ping (that's the best I can describe it anyway)?

rainman (rainman), Thursday, 18 December 2003 21:55 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"the jazz insects, active oxford area 1981-83"

Might I have seen you supporting Play Dead, Mark?

Stewart Osborne (Stewart Osborne), Friday, 19 December 2003 00:52 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
awesome band. overpriced in the used section at Amoeba, though. Waiting for the Love Bus is fantastic.

Riot Gear! (Gear!), Friday, 11 February 2005 01:31 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I think I'll have to dig out these albums next after my Robyn Hitchcock phase wraps up.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 11 February 2005 01:49 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I think I'll have to dig out these albums next after my Robyn Hitchcock phase wraps up.

My Robyn Hitchcock phase has lasted fifteen years, Ned.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Friday, 11 February 2005 01:54 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

*bows* You must excuse me -- I mean in the sense of relistening to the albums one a day at work.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 11 February 2005 01:58 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Tres "S" for "Scandal in Bohemia". (with the original version of "Southern Mark Smith")

"Anyone know the name of the Jazz Buthcer song with that sound in it that resembles a submarine ping (that's the best I can describe it anyway)?"

Are you sure your not talking about Half Man Half Biscuit's "Time Flies By When You're The Driver Of A Train"?

peepee (peepee), Friday, 11 February 2005 02:24 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Hey! Woah woah woah. Wait a minute. I wanna hear the Jazz Insects. Send me a single!

Bimble... (Bimble...), Friday, 11 February 2005 08:02 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Oops. That was 2003. Bummer.

Bimble... (Bimble...), Friday, 11 February 2005 08:03 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Anyway, I have pretty good memories of Fishcotheque. Not sure exactly why Jazz Butcher never quite stuck for me. Wouldn't mind hearing some now, but I don't have any on hand.

Bimble... (Bimble...), Friday, 11 February 2005 15:11 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Used to have a nice video of a Jazz Butcher gig that was shown on German TV in the 80s. That was definitely more entertaining than any of the records I've got, I'm afraid, though there are some great tracks to be found. Maybe I should get one of the best-of's and dump the rest.

NickB (NickB), Friday, 11 February 2005 15:18 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

S: "Grooving in the Bus Lane"

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Friday, 11 February 2005 15:19 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

three months pass...
Pat Fish at the Labour Club in Northampton tonight and on 3 June. Both are free.

diedre mousedropping and a quarter (Dave225), Friday, 27 May 2005 18:59 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Anyone know the name of the Jazz Buthcer song with that sound in it that resembles a submarine ping (that's the best I can describe it anyway)?"

That would be "Whaddya?"

Elvis Telecom (Chris Barrus), Friday, 27 May 2005 19:58 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Whaddya" is an amazing song!

"I would let the handrail go if I thought anyone would catch my fall"

Scandal In Bohemia is still my favorite through and through, especially "Girlfriend." For his late period work Condition Blue (and songs like "Girls Say Yes") tends to be underrated. Cult of the Basement is inconsistent but the highs (especially "She's On Drugs") more than justify the lows.

zaxxon25 (zaxxon25), Friday, 27 May 2005 20:07 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i was a bit distressed that no-one was going to mention "waiting for the love bus" (pat's best record) but cheers to riot gear!, whoever you are. worth it for the first two songs alone - "rosemary davis world of sound" and "bakersfield.".

"cult of the basement" gets a bit wacky for me at times, but for "girl go" alone...

my love for jbc probably has plenty to do with teenage creation records obsession hangover, but i'd rather it be pat fish than pete astor, knowwhatimean?

(someday i'll start that revolving paint dream thread! for two people to post on...)

jon dale, Saturday, 28 May 2005 13:16 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i once read an nme interview where JB said he named himself JB as inspired by THE NAME OF THE BAND I WAS IN (= the jazz insects, active oxford area 1981-83, microfact fans)


a collectivist romantic fling! (Jody Beth Rosen), Saturday, 28 May 2005 15:52 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
I just pwned Max Eider's solo LP Best Kisser In the World for three bucks. I look forward to listening to it, when I'm once again at my apartment.

Gear! (Gear!), Friday, 15 July 2005 04:42 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

two months pass...
i didn't realize how much Jazz Butcher I had til now...

Big Planet Scarey Planet
A Scandal In Bohemia
Bloody Nonsense
The Gift of Music
Real Men
Waiting For the Love Bus
Condition Blue
Glorious and Idiotic
Distressed Gentlefolk

all great! G&I is a live album, a fine one, so I disgree with the assessment upthread that their live work is completely weak.

gear (gear), Friday, 14 October 2005 22:54 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

there's this song "southern mark smith" by the jazz butcher. does anyone know if is this a reference to mark e smith?

acrobat, Friday, 24 August 2007 14:11 (eleven years ago) Permalink

it's great but i'd like to know. it would make sense, the band seems, from what i've heard to be at best the midpoint between felt and the fall. which is a good place to be.

acrobat, Friday, 24 August 2007 14:12 (eleven years ago) Permalink

yes, it is a reference to Mark E... "you gotta put on you best friend's anorak and come on out if you wanna try it out for yourself"...

I never gave anything after Distressed Gentlefolk a chance, sounds like the later records are more worthwhile than I thought. The records on Glass are some of the finest tunes the 80's have to offer.

sleeve, Friday, 24 August 2007 14:26 (eleven years ago) Permalink

MES wrote a response - "Pat Trip Dispenser".

_Cult Of The Basement_ and _Big Planet Scary Planet_ are outstanding later albums.

Mr. Odd, Friday, 24 August 2007 14:30 (eleven years ago) Permalink

"Disceau Inferneau"

Mark G, Friday, 24 August 2007 14:37 (eleven years ago) Permalink

wow, it's like the "who shot ya" / "hit 'em up", "ether" / "takeover" of indie.

acrobat, Friday, 24 August 2007 15:05 (eleven years ago) Permalink

I would still love to have Caroline Wheeler's Birthday Present explained to me. A truly singular song.

dlp9001, Friday, 24 August 2007 17:18 (eleven years ago) Permalink

I mean, serious contendor for best lyrics ever, and I don't have a f'in clue what it's about.

Let's go, let's go... One, Two, Three, Four....
Burke and Hare!
ESTER, I'm coming for you, ESTER, ESTER.
We're gonna tell you something really big (ESTER!)
Like the Alice Cooper Group.
ESTER! Alice Cooper, baby! Alice Cooper!
Uh-uhrrrmm... Like the Alice Cooper Group.
Do you wanna touch me? DEAD BABIES!
See, there's been some big, big things, and some are bigger than others,
And when one might get up and go out of the room, he gets replaced with another.
Now some of these are monsters, the kind that live in the lakes (WHEURRRR!)
And other kinds are like Metal Men, and other kinds are BIG SNAKES.
But they don't look like nothing, they don't look like nothing at all.
They don't look like nothing when you put them up against Caroline Wheeler's Birthday Present.
Did ya get that, Joe? (CRAZY!) ESTER, I'M WAITING...
Ner! Ner! Ner!
SAUSAGES! Caroline Wheeler's Birthday Present was made entirely from the skins of dead Jim Morrisons (Scattered over dawn's bleeding highway, I suppose...): that's why it smelled so bad.
Caroline Wheeler checked into the lobby of the Bruce Grobelaar Leisure Centre
( Liverpool and Zimbabwe goalkeeper of the 1980's )
(they check in, but they don't check out) - she was looking for a room where she could sit down and get herself back in order (ORDER!)...
SHEESH!, thought Caroline, What the HELL was that? (Edgar Wallace!)
So she goes to the elevator, she thinks "Well, that'll be pretty straightforward" (Yes, STRAIGHT UP, Caroline...) You know what she finds?
The elevator breaks down with Caroline and the fish in it.
(Fish?) (Uh-oh...)
Do you know what happens if you leave a fish too long in an elevator?
You don't? (Uncontrollable Celtic whooping from Jones)
Well, here's a clue: fish is biodegradable. (THAT MEANS IT ROTS.)
Ner! Ner! Ner!

Well, there's some big, big things and they travel in big, big cars:
Cars like a Mercedes with a big tow-bar (WHERE'S ESTER?)
But there ain't no vehicle big enough,
They just ain't built the vehicle big enough yet to hold the thing that men call Caroline Wheeler's Birthday Present (caroline wheeler's birthday present)
(Heck! Here comes the hell drivers!)

dlp9001, Friday, 24 August 2007 17:21 (eleven years ago) Permalink

that song rules SO MUCH

and actually after the Jim Morrison line the background vox say "indians scattered over dawn's highway bleeding I SUPPOSE".

sleeve, Friday, 24 August 2007 21:41 (eleven years ago) Permalink

MES wrote a response - "Pat Trip Dispenser".

_Cult Of The Basement_ and _Big Planet Scary Planet_ are outstanding later albums.

-- Mr. Odd, Friday, 24 August 2007 15:30 (1 week ago) Bookmark Link

Not the case it would seem.

The Butcher Says...

All right, here's the thing. The phrase came up some time in conversation and was duly seized upon. I think that it may well have been some kind of reference to Gerard Langley. We'd been to see the Aeroplanes quite early on in their career on account of a review in the NME written by our pal Campbell Stevenson, which went under the headline: "Exploding! Plastic! In Bristol???" But, you know, Mark E. Smith is so steroptypically northern that the very phrase "southern Mark Smith" comes across to me like "lush Sahara"or "wise and noble Bush". So there's that too.
The tune got "written" into a tape recorder during the BBC evening news broadcast on Easter Sunday 1983. References to Lady Di had already been excised by the time we recorded the single version, which was at the beginning of September 1983. Ah well."

Good. There's that one wrapped up in a tidy little package. Now if someone cares to explain "I Need Meat"...

A little later...

I saw a bit of correspondence on the site about this "Southern Mark Smith" business. Our dear friend Mister Berman appears to have had a fair stab at explaining what may or may not have been on my mind at the time (it is, frankly, not much use asking me at this advanced stage of the game...), but then another fellow (Hank, is it?) steps in with some rather more speculative stuff about one "McGinty".

Our pal is referring to "Pat, Trip Dispenser", which was the b-side to the Fall's single "C.R.E.E.P." Towards the end of the tune, things go quiet and Mister Smith is heard intoning (and I write from memory) "McGinty thought he could fool the Fall with his imitation speed!" (My memory is about 100% on this one, though.)

Now, "C.R.E.E.P." came out not long after we had recorded "Southern Mark Smith". Somebody at JBC Central (Mitch?) brought home a copy. We heard the b-side and were struck down with fear, for we ourselves were not sure whether somebody was having a pop at our gang (with Lolo Mcginty) or not. The man on the website clearly felt the same way, for he writes authoratitively for anyone who is paying attention that the McGinty hereinabove referred to was indeed the talented wee monkey boy who played bass for us.

You can see what is going on here - there is a "Pat" in the title, a "McGinty" in the lyric and it came out about the same time as our "Smith" record. You can see the way that Hank's mind is working here, can't you, Mister Holmes?

Trouble is...it's not right. "Pat, Trip Dispenser" was already in the can before the Fall even heard our record. It is therefore definitely NOT an "answer record" to "Southern Mark Smith". And, as ever, the clue is in the title. Those who know the history of the Fall well will tell you that the song is in fact a blast at infamous Manchester dealer, Pat McGinty. (Oh yeah - Pat, Trip Dispenser!) There had been a bit of customer dissatisfaction on the band's part, and this was their way of getting back at the naughty pharmacist (no, don't start...)

So there you have it. Not the JBC, but some dodgy Mancunian c***. Hope that clears things up.

Mon Feb 24 08:45:31 PST 2003

acrobat, Friday, 31 August 2007 09:37 (eleven years ago) Permalink

There you go, using facts to ruin a perfectly good theory...

Mr. Odd, Friday, 31 August 2007 11:32 (eleven years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Can I just say that the Jazz Butcher just came to my art opening, or would that be namedropping?

He tried to buy a painting but I'd already sold it.

I bought him a drink (again) because, you know, you just have to...

It's so strange seeing him in London, I always thought he didn't exist outside London. (But he has bloody great stories about Spacemen 3 and Loop, he does.)

C M Y Kate (Masonic Boom), Friday, 10 October 2008 01:11 (ten years ago) Permalink

Didnt exist outside NORTHAMPTON.

Please exucse me, I have had about 15 rum and cokes at this point.

C M Y Kate (Masonic Boom), Friday, 10 October 2008 01:12 (ten years ago) Permalink

eleven months pass...

Jazz Butcher line up for the LA shows is Pat Fish, Max Eider, Steve Valentine, Kevin Haskins.

In addition to the PTP show, they're playing The Echo on October 13 and the Blue Palms Brewhouse on October 17.

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 8 October 2009 20:04 (nine years ago) Permalink

Curse you lucky LA people.

I just want to know if he's going to release anything new. "Rotten Soul" unfortunately lived up to it's title.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Friday, 9 October 2009 00:07 (nine years ago) Permalink

that lineup makes me hope Mr. Fish and Mr. Eider record/write together again, preferably before I die. the more I listen to the post-Eider stuff the more I am convinced Max was an essential part of the lineup (even more so than the L&R guys). his 1987 solo LP is further evidence in support of this.

sleeve, Friday, 9 October 2009 19:10 (nine years ago) Permalink

I hope you've checked out Max's next two solo albums.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Saturday, 10 October 2009 03:09 (nine years ago) Permalink

will do ASAP

sleeve, Sunday, 11 October 2009 00:13 (nine years ago) Permalink

OK The Echo web site says this:

Tuesday 10.13.09: Distressed Gentlefolk night with PAT FISH (acoustic) / MAX EIDER (acoustic) / DOWNY MILDEW / CLAY IDOLS / BLACK WATCH @ echo

but the Jazz Butcher web site says this:

Solo set from Pat Fish and Max Eider; Pat & Max duo set; Band set with Steve and Kevin.

can anyone from LA sort this out for me, we are considering going if it's the latter!

sleeve, Sunday, 11 October 2009 00:39 (nine years ago) Permalink

OK, that was like the bestest, most awesomest birthday present ever. Plus bonus interjection/interdiction from David J.!

Elvis Telecom, Monday, 12 October 2009 08:50 (nine years ago) Permalink

Pretty cool -- a photo I took last night is the new main photo on the official site:


Ned Raggett, Monday, 12 October 2009 17:25 (nine years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Oh man, more love for Butchie!! More more! I just listened to "The Gift Of Music" for the first time in yonks and goddamn if it isn't one fantastic pop chune after another.

"Does the elephant have any water? Think about the elephant and give him a drink."

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Thursday, 2 December 2010 23:23 (eight years ago) Permalink

I was a bit snotty about this guy upthread, but "Southern Mark Smith", "Girlfriend", "Angels"... all lovely songs

Krampus Interruptus (NickB), Thursday, 2 December 2010 23:34 (eight years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

This morning it's "In Bath Of Bacon", the debut album. Ramshackle, goofy, naive and full of musical jokes and references. Utterly charming. "Bigfoot reach for his credit card..."

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Thursday, 5 April 2012 14:10 (seven years ago) Permalink

And its better than a cold bath with someone you dislike

doug watson, Friday, 6 April 2012 01:09 (seven years ago) Permalink

^^^ the line that hooked me on the Jazz Butcher for life, one of the few bands that inspires me to be a dedicated completist.

Flat Of NAGLs (sleeve), Friday, 6 April 2012 03:45 (seven years ago) Permalink

search: the cassette-only cover of "Temptation Inside Your Heart"

Flat Of NAGLs (sleeve), Friday, 6 April 2012 03:46 (seven years ago) Permalink

Ha! I just downloaded that today!

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Friday, 6 April 2012 04:10 (seven years ago) Permalink

three months pass...


To mark the 30th anniversary of the Jazz Butcher Conspiracy, Max Eider and Pat Fish are planning to record a new album with producer Richard Formby. After years of wandering, confused, through the digital wreckage of the record business, we have alighted upon this brilliant model for getting our music to those who want it most. So here we are, appealing to you to help us front up the necessary for the recording and manufacturing of that album.

The record will draw on the best of Pat’s compositions since the recording of Rotten Soul back in 2000. Unlike that album, it will be made in a proper studio with the best producer we know.

By pledging here you secure your copy of the album. Think of it as a kind of long-term pre-ordering system. We also have some interesting exclusives to offer, from a signed lyric sheet to Pat’s Fender El Rio guitar. Check out what’s on offer in the sidebar.

If we’re lucky enough to attract more than our target amount, we shall be making a donation to the Citizens’ Advice Bureau. Anything else will go towards the setting up of a celebratory thirtieth anniversary tour.

If we fail to reach our target, everybody gets their money back and we’ll go back to playing cribbage and dribbling into our beer as we struggle to recall our exact whereabouts. But let’s not think about that, eh?

Please give generously.

Elvis Telecom, Saturday, 7 July 2012 00:49 (six years ago) Permalink

took under 7 hours to get funded

zappi, Saturday, 7 July 2012 01:06 (six years ago) Permalink

Go Butchie go! I sure hope it's better than "Rotten Soul" which was, er, rotten, the only real dud in his catalog.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Saturday, 7 July 2012 01:07 (six years ago) Permalink

That list of extras is amazing, would totally buy a house concert if I was in the UK. Excited for this!

sleeve, Saturday, 7 July 2012 01:19 (six years ago) Permalink

ten months pass...

so playing in duo form in NYC next month, i guess i should go


ballin' from Maine to Mexico (Dr Morbius), Friday, 17 May 2013 16:47 (six years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Max Eider has a new album, or perhaps a mini-album, "Duck Dance": http://maxeider.com/albums/79

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 30 November 2014 22:26 (four years ago) Permalink

Oh, and the reunion album was quite disappointing. :-(

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 30 November 2014 22:26 (four years ago) Permalink

four years pass...

Bummer news that Mr Fish has been poorly, as they say. This isn’t for health care costs but for general expenses in the meantime:


Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 21 May 2019 12:20 (one month ago) Permalink

aw jeez

(the jazz insects, active oxford area 1981-83, microfact fans) (discography = one undistributable single, 'elephants', on our "own label" = haha a big pile of like 987 unsold singles in satch's loft)


1 For Sale from $253.16

Emperor Tonetta Ketchup (sleeve), Tuesday, 21 May 2019 14:32 (one month ago) Permalink

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