Tag Archives: Max Kutner

Under The Bridge (Again)


Way way back in 1969, little did I suspect, when I bought Trout Mask Replica (as a pre-release import) with my best girl on my arm, that some forty seven years later, the drummer on that wonderful record would serenade the very same wummin (kissing her in mid-song), in a subterranean Chelsea night club owned by a Russian oligarch.

You couldn’t really make that up, could you?
Here we see Drumbo sound-checking and singing a stonking Bat Chain Puller, while Lesley levitates and feigns disinterest, wondering when we’re all going out to eat!
Couple of hours, some Cajun Salmon and a good natter later it was suddenly showtime………….

I’m not really a big fan of taking photos during a show (subscribing to the Fripp School of thought that if you’re concentrating on shooting snaps then you’re not paying the music the correct respect) and as a result, generally don’t. However always aware that the current MB gig might be my last – on this occasion, during Set #2 and cognizant that Jan Podsiadly was already at the front of stage, I moved around and took shots from deeper in the room.
For a first attempt, I’m quite content. Not quite sure I’d do it again, though.
13725048_10207294972275764_2965611879781369977_o 13724007_10207308363890546_8877802208316321740_o 13691135_10207308361330482_1203406121425213935_o 13767325_10207294834632323_5538808049751231315_o

Post gig cuddle and blether with lensman Jan.



and playing with some new software……………………………


A Chronology of The Magic Band

Magic Band Tree 2016

Album of the Year, 2015


Until the eleventh hour (early November to be precise), my 2015 album of the year was a straight shoot out between two gals.
Kaki King’s ‘The Neck is a Bridge to the Body’ caught my attention, immediately upon release, back in March. The_Neck_Is_The_Bridge_To_The_Body_Kaki_King

and then immediately after that (and seldom off my CD player since) was Ela Orleans’ Upper Hell. That haunting melodic collaboration with Howie B, by way of Dante’s inferno.

Should you ever get a chance to catch Ela live, do so without a second’s hesitation.
She’s absolutely mesmerising!
But then, while I debated which one was better than the other, out of the blue, as the year wore on, appeared Evil GeniusBitter Human – a collection of instrumentals by the Los Angeles trio that features Wormhole wizard Max Kutner (Grandmother of Invention stunt guitarist, Magic Band guitarist-stage left ). Stefan Kac on Tuba and Mike Lockwood on drums
bitter human
I often buy albums purely on the strength of unusual instrumentation or juxtaposition thereof (e.g. Brass Monkey) and so this item was a shoo in for me . I can’t really recall playing an album quite so often, one time after another, since Ali Farka Toure’s The River.
Overall there’s a flavour of Henry Threadgill running through and over the whole thing but that’s no bad thing, no bad thing at all. Over the weeks, I realise I’ve been editing wee imaginary films to go along with this wonderful music.
Want to see them?

Blind Elephant’s Green Felt Jungle Dance – It’s a Czech cartoon that was made during the early days of the Cold War but was never seen until the early nineties. A small frog, which we’ve  seen earlier, fishing with his two froglets, is now being chased by a sinister fox made from used pipe cleaners.

Juke’s Prompt – James Corden has ordered a pizza delivery and rushes around as he readies his squalid suburban apartment for its arrival. His fiance meanwhile dumps him by text and the arriving pizza, in a metaphor for the state of his romance, is violently binned.

Another Ale for the Gesture Urn – The working week of a village pharmacist is studied and condensed into six and a half minutes of sonic bliss (Documentary)

Secondary Air While staking out a bordello and enjoying the skills of its  masseuse, a heavily moustachioed Tom Cruise is slipped a hallucinogenic suppository. As he trips out, in an out of focus over-saturated slo-mo tumble, and slowly realises he’s missed the villain escaping with the loot, the house band is playing this tune.

For No Particular Reason – Stop -motion close up of a Danish Pastry speedily deteriorating into the blue mould of decay.

(Share in a) Regional Meat Vision – Jim Rockford is in the shower. Some malcontent calls him and leaves this tune on his  ansafone!

Ice People – A potters wheel turns, showing an embryonic vase slowly being corrupted by pieces of sheep offal that are thrown lightly into the clay.

Vamp for Lenny Kekua – William Burroughs cut up letters repeatedly spell out ‘Hoax’ in a variety of languages.

Manuever – Dr Morbius explains The Krell, and their history, to some angry pensioners.

Evil Genius, Bitter Human – An alcoholic Jack Lemmon  has entered a sandcastle building contest. Building more and yet more elaborate castles we share his frustration as he repeatedly knocks them over to build afresh. Somewhat cleverly, the viewers never see a completed castle.


A taste of those I’ve been discussing……..


Under The Bridge!

Reflections on last Friday, .
Had a long liquid lunch with old friend, stand-up comedian, Johnny Glasgow, meeting up after a five hour train journey Scotland/Chelsea.
Discovered I was booked into the same hotel as the band.
Pre-gig fish and chips.
‘Access All Areas’ wrist band, waiting at Under The Bridge front door, courtesy of Drumbo.
To the obvious consternation of his bodyguards, I compliment a passing Russian oligarch, Roman Abramovich, on the hi-tech set up installed in this, his, nightclub.
Get asked by a complete stranger “Are you really Rupert Cocking?”
Watch two blistering sets from The Magic Band and feel quite ’emotional’ at the ensuing slideshow.
Drink some of the band’s dressing room beer.

Blether to actor Paul Bradley, from Holby City, about how good a gig it was and compliment him on his own impressive performance answering questions, about Beefheart, on Celebrity Mastermind.

elliot hope
Enjoy an all too short blether with lensmaster Jan Podsiadly.
Meet ‘Singing Through You’ DVD filmmaker Elaine Shepherd.
Get a ‘team photo’ with the band, me and yon man with the seemingly infinite stamina and bottomless wallet, Clint Walker.

TMB with Rupert and Clint-1
Back to my hotel room and a patiently waiting bag full of ‘Fallen Chew Chew’ – Salted Caramel Milk Stout (6%), that I was unable to take into the dressing room.
All of the above happening, as the song goes, “with m’baby by m’side”.

Then to sleep……….

Y’know to be perfectly honest, I’ve had a lot worse days.
Thanks to all involved!

He was good but not as good as me!