Friday, July 10, 2009

Street Repair

A few months ago, I posted a track from Destiny Street, the 1982 album by Richard Hell and the Voidoids. Long out of print, the album will be reissued on Insound in September as "Destiny Street Repaired". Richard Hell recently found the original rhythm tracks for the album and had Ivan Julian, Bill Frisell and Marc Ribot add new lead guitar parts. Hell also rerecorded his vocals. The reissue also adds two previously unavailable Voidoids demos from 1979 ("Funhunt" and "Smitten") to the original ten tracks of Destiny Street. More details are available here.

Why rerecord it? In the liner notes to the Rhino compilation Spurts: The Richard Hell Story, Hell complains of "the layers of guitars that just turn to high-pitched sludge" on the Voidoids' second LP. "(Robert Quine) used to say how he'd had this urge to try many grotesque things with guitars, but by the end of this record that urge was completely out of his system." The musicians on the LP were Quine, Hell, Fred Maher on drums, and guitarist Juan "Naux" Maciel. "Naux did a lot of soloing on Destiny Street. People always assume solos are Quine's, but it's about equally divided," Hell recalled.

I never had a problem with the sound of the LP, but I'm curious to hear what the new guitarists will add to Voidoids classics like "The Kid with the Replaceable Head". Ivan Julian was an original Voidoids member, but did not appear on Destiny Street. Quine died in 2005, and Naux died in February of this year. Juan "Naux" Maciel had most recently been performing blues music in Providence RI under the name John "Crawlin Snake" Mac. Prior to joining the Voidoids, he led a NYC no wave band called China Shop (whose music was recently issued on CD by
Anthology Recordings).

Destiny Street includes covers of Dylan's "Going, Going, Gone", "I Can Only Give You Everything" (popularized by Van Morrison & Them), and a Kinks cover,
"You Gotta Move". You can preorder Destiny Street Repaired on CD for $16 or the LP/CD/poster for $30 from Insound. Spurts (the Richard Hell anthology CD) is also recommended.