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Clarence Baxter

My quest to open the world's ears to underground music by any means necessary has been progressing well since I last wrote. The ghetto blaster revolution is in full steam, my comrades.

We've made our way through Australia, into Malaysia (where we had to skip town in a big hurry and I lost a primo blaster to a bastard customs agent), stopped over in China where we were denied visas (as usual the incident was not covered in the fascist western press), and went to Mongolia to pick up an old friend for the next leg of the tour...

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Formerly known as Jargalsaikhany Enkhsaikhan, he took the name DJ E-Z Fu and decided to travel the world with me spreading the twin gospels of acid house and post-rock. Fu especially loves Tortoise, and during tours often blasts the second track off the Millions Now Living Will Never Die album. Just to fuck with people, he'll also play the Mongolian National Anthem  on his Panasonic Mini-329XR-- which makes him no friends in the Chinese regime.

After a few relaxing days spent in DJ Fu's yurt on the tundra, we hopped a bus to Moscow, where we were to meet the last member of the crew, a grizzled blaster veteran from the old school, and begin the Slavic leg of the tour.

Moscow, April 27, 1999

When we arrived in Moscow, McGinty was nowhere to be found, and he had not left word at his hotel. Exhausted from the 7 day bus trip, we slept for a few days in a safe house run by a former associate on the West Side of the city. Given the current climate, we weren't taking any chances.

Moscow, April 28, 1999

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Akbar X and Shenard Rodriguez

The air was crisp on the streets of Moscow and our blasters were tuned to perfection.  DJ Fu, Akbar, and Shenard and I headed for the Kremlin, blasters slung low on our hips, itchy fingers on the play button, just waiting for provocation.

While walking along a small side street, we heard something that stopped us dead in our tracks-- "Winds of Change" by the Scorpions. Such a song, regardless of the irony involved, could not go unpunished.

I crouched down and waved the others on. This was to be a solo mission.

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In my blaster I had the new Cornelius remix album, CM, where the Japanese superstar remixes tracks by European and American acts like the High Llamas, Money Mark, and the Pastels. Fingering play nervously I seized my moment, (Down to Goooorky paaark) and burst into the bar, blaster blazin'.

A dozen middle-aged Russian men turned and stared at me with watery eyes. I had selected to blast Cornelius' remix of Coldcut's "Moog2000." The track starts off slow and lush, with orchestral flourishes, but soon unwinds into a drum n bassy extravaganza of drums, vocal samples and raw sounds. Sensing the men's extreme annoyance, I turned my blaster up to "11," and prepared to bolt.

But the door slammed shut behind me. The mission was quickly turning bad as the group of severely inebriated men surrounded me. Panicking, I hit the autoreverse, only to be confronted, mid song, with the airy, breezy, beautiful remix of the High Llamas "Homespin Rerun."

I felt vodka breath on the back of my neck and prepared to use my blaster as a club when all of the sudden the door was thrown open.

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Standing there in silhouette was McGinty, the former lord of Venice Beach, the outlaw blaster warrior. Smiling slyly, he pressed play and unleashed a cacophony of noise that all but shattered my eardrums. I recognized it at once as the opening to Six Finger Satellite's "Baby's Got the Rabies", cranked up so loud that only blaster veterans like myself could handle it.

In the ensuing confusion I ran into the street, blaster still playing the soft, gorgeous, electronic lushness of the High Llamas remix. The men poured out of the bar, fiercely angry but also bewildered beyond belief.

It was one of the greatest moments of my life.

Seeing those Russian men realize that an entire underground of music existed that they had never even imagined was the reason my comrades and I do this. Those Russians needed to feel the spirit of the true revolution that has been lacking since the 1920's. They needed to know the tyranny of oppresively banal Western pop music and revel in the spirit of a new age of underground music. They needed to shit their pants in fear and have their eardrums bleed the blood of the virginal ear.

The revolution is on, my friends. The question is, will you stay in the protective womb of ignorance, or will you join us? Will you be shocked and afraid of the new sounds, or will you relish them, embrace them, put them on tape and blast them at 100db around the world?

The choice is yours.

USOUNDS | 1999

buy the Cornelius CM and FM records.

Cornelius this site keeps getting better and better
High Llamas some good sound files here
Pastels updated by jonathan
6finger Satellite check out Machine Cuisine
The Scorpions the best scorpions website EVER
Mongolian Yurt faq most yurts are y2k compliant

::: Usounds DigitalFind :::

the world's finest mp3's, neatly categorized for your listening pleasure!


Belle and Sebastian
Smith and Mighty
Fantastic Plastic Machine
Club 8
Peanut Butter Wolf
Curtis Mayfield
The Beta Band
Takako Minekawa
Boards of Canada
Stereo Total
The Roots and Goodie MOb