Alternative music reviews

August 28, 2008

Electic Eels

Filed under: electric eels,vinyl — @ 10:24 pm Comments (0)

How different things were before the Internet. Back in 1977 I bought a single called Agitated by Die Electric Eels. A few months later I found another copy in a record shop and was so surprised that I bought it again, just in case my first copy ever wore out – it was that good. Apart from the fact I liked it, I knew nothing more about Electric Eels and had found no information about them in the music press apart from a very short review- NME didn’t talk about them until twenty years later in a short article.

Now, all I have to do is type their name into a search engine and I can find out plenty. I get confirmation that despite the pseudo-German on the cover they were from the States – Cleveland in fact. Although it came out in 1977, it was actually recorded in 75 and so pre-figured Punk significantly so it is really a violent aberation of Glam-Rock. It sounds like a hell of a band. I particularly like this story from the Scat records Electric Eels pages.

Their first gig was in August of 1974 at the Moonshine Co-op in Columbus. McManus adorned himself in rat-traps for the occasion and Morton was wearing a jacket held together with safety pins, earning them the tag “Ratman and Bobbin” from the police they encountered when leaving the bar at the end of the night. Morton took offense and kicked the nearest policeman in the balls as hard as he could, despite being handcuffed at the time. As a result of the inevitable beating that ensued, Morton performed their next show three weeks later with a slide and wrench taped to his broken left hand in order to play his guitar.

Despite only playing five gigs they had significant influnce on Peter Laughner of Pere Ubu and Stiv Bators of the Dead Boys but this astonishing piece of catatonic guitar and vocal was never equalled by those better known bands.

Agitated by Die Electric Eels

Agitated by Die Electric Eels