BLACK RANDY & THE METROSQUAD
Formed: Los Angeles, California, USA
The L.A. scene threw up some right nuts, and Black Randy was there among them (until he died that was).
His one LP is a jaw-droppingly-original mix of punk, funk and jazz, a highly amusing cocktail of L.A. low-life wackiness. Farfisa organs, plinky-plonky pianos, squealy saxophones, funky bass-lines, and syncopated, busy drum rhythms recall the swamp-city hotbed atmospherics of The Contortions, but in lieu of James Chance's misanthropy there's just beer-soaked, drugged-up bewilderment, lots of swearing and nob references, and a Dickies-like display of smart-arse attitudes. Amid the pertinent skid-row observations of the likes of 'I Slept In An Arcade', which equals anything by the Nuns or Black Flag, is a brilliant rendition of 'Theme From Shaft', an early stab at rap ('Barefootin' On The Wicked Picket') and an attack on San Francisco. Being vocally inarticulate doesn't stop the clearly Caucasian Black Randy adopting a Rastafarian brogue on 'Down At The Laundrymat', declaring, "All my clothes are funky, mon, but I will go to the laundrymat and Jah will make them clean". The 1993 CD reissue adds extra tracks, including B-Sides and live detritus.
His music is very highly recommended, BUT NOT IN THE PUNK MAINSTEAM.
Singles / Albums
|Trouble At The Cup (7", as Black Randy & Metrosquad, 1977)||Idi Amin (7", as Black Randy And His Elite Metrosquad, 1978)||I Slept In An Arcade (7", as Black Randy & Metrosquad, 1979)||"Pass The Dust, I Think I'm Bowie" (LP, as Black Randy And The Metrosquad, 1979)|
|Rhino 39 / Black Randy & The Metrosquad
(7", split, 2008)
Dangerhouse Volume One US LP/CD 1991 (Frontier): Trouble At The Cup
Dangerhouse Volume 2: Give Me A Little Pain! US LP/CD 1993 (Frontier): Idi Amin / I Slept In An Arcade
Live From The Masque US CD 2003 (Dionysus): Trouble At The Cup
N.Y. L.A. - The Voice Of America Australia LP (Picnic Rock): Down At The Laundrymat
Dangerhouse: Complete Singles Collected 1977-1979 Spain 2xCD/14x7" 2013 (Munster/Frontier/Dangerhouse): Trouble At The Cup / Loner With A Boner / Sperm Bank Baby / Idi Amin / I'm Black & Proud Part 3 / I'm Black & Proud Part 14 / I Wanna Be A Nark / I Slept In An Arcade / Give It Up Or Turnit A Loose