Airlines first demo cassette February 1989- five songs and some live stuff

7 Jan

Four of the five tracks on this tape were released on vinyl, and they will be posted on this blog at a later date. For now (as I’m concentrating on my cassette collection exclusively), I wanted to include the outtake, a song that John Tanzer co-wrote five years previous to this recording in 1984: “Tears”

The band Airlines continue to fascinate me, even over 20 years later. I like them now even more than I did then; their songs are constantly going through my head. I’ve never been much of a “lyric guy”, but the subject matter in their songs still haunts me. “Threshing Time” is about the fact that audible pain can be registered from plants, whether via a “high-pitched whine” on the radio of a tractor harvesting grain or on an EKG attached to a spider plant. Seems fitting that the version of the song I’m providing herein was recorded in the heartland (August 1989 at Gabe’s Oasis, Iowa City) right before harvest time. Drummer Jim DeRogatis is always the joker on this recording; I did not write this song! (tho I hear it in my head often). Airlines were four very intelligent musicians, and they had a big influence on me (thanks to John Neilson the bass player- he turned me onto CAN).

“Threshing Time”

Of course, WFMU is the world’s all-time greatest radio station (“Beware of The Blog” can’t be topped), and it always has been the greatest. Any record that I released on my label that got on the charts at WFMU was such a thrill.  Airlines’ first 45 “Test” was the one that I released (with Ed on the Susstones label) that charted at #1 at WFMU. I got to go to the East Orange location at Upsala College in 1990 when The 27 Various played a session on The Music Faucet, WFMU’s Sunday live-on-air show. “Evelyn’s Kitchen”, presented here, is from Airlines’ June 1989 session at the same hallowed studio.

“Evelyn’s Kitchen”

Thanks again to John Tanzer & Jim DeRogatis for allowing me to post this stuff. I treasure my time spent with these gentlemen, and I’ll love their music forever.

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