Ghost of an Octopus - XVIII XVII
Pecus - There’s a Dolphin Talkin’ to Me
I had these pushed into my sweaty mitt whilst in Glasgow for Instal 08. Two three inch cdr’s with no info really bar a few track titles on the Pecus sleeve, I’m not even sure that the Roman numerals are significant, they’re just there looking important and mysterious like end credits. I had little knowledge of what was going into my pocket but that the man giving me the GO release was from Levenshulme which I later discovered is now Joincey’s stomping ground and there on the back of the Pecus sleeve I half spied a picture that was Joincey and that handwriting sure looked like Joincey’s so maybe there was some kind of Joincey involvement then?
That would make these two little spinners of more than passing interest because Joincey is famous in his own tap room for being one of the shadowiest shifters on the English underground scene and I hate to use the word underground but there’s really no more apt a word. That he remains virtually unknown but exalted by those who do says more about him than any ten CD box set of his collected works would [which, by the way would be a virtually impossible task considering the scatter gun mechanics employed to release his material].
Internet searches reveal Ghost of an Octopus to be the twin berth caravanette that is Smear Campaign and the Joinced one. Smear Campaign being the giver of said discs and last see helping out Nackt Insekten on his Glasgow tube noise gig - a memory that will last long in the memory not just for the sheer absurdity of it all but for the fact that if this stunt had been pulled in London all the participants and spectators would now be dead from bullets to the head and other important parts. Smear Campaign benefit from being straight forward ugly. Joincey could give you anything from Whitehouse to Olivia Newton John covers. Here they seem to share the load with some split channel madness that’s one channel of the amplified death throes of an angry bluebottle fizzing in a glass jar across from all the guitar solos of Stevie Vai played all at once by somebody who has drunk ten pints of Scruttocks. GO are never going to be succinct or attract big words from Wire hacks. Their offering is a straight reflection of the vomit splattered streets of Manchester and reflects that perfectly. The machine eventually gives up the ... er ghost at the cut off period that is the 20 minute mark but by then their message is perfectly clear.
Pecus I assume to be yet another Joincey solo project - don’t even try nailing down all the bands he’s involved with or his myriad solo projects - I bet even the man himself looses himself. The first short track ‘flecks’ is a mumbled manipulated vocal work that sounds faintly like a 3 am death threat to noisy neighbours, ‘purpleggs’ is whistling feedback, ‘vectors’ is the industrial Mancunian decay that settles all over the North West like pollution on a new paint job. Joincey has more hats than a Russian Army Store and can hit you with just about kind of ear bomb. What gets me excited is that the urgency with which these things appear is matched by their equally rapid disappearance. And with no contact info it seems as if they’re almost content with the fact that these things just exist in their own right, lurking in someone's pocket waiting to cause disruption.