Three Cheers For Jellyfish!!!!!

Guys remember Jellyfish? Wow! This chick Beth Ann at Polygram turned me on to them in '90 or so because she had their 12-song demo that had made the rounds and gotten rejected everywhere, Polygram included. Wow. Charisma picked them up and kept 'em when they fired everyone else on their roster in '93 (my buddies The Sighs included although Matt Cullen went on to Ware River Club so bob's yer uncle) and the rest is fuckin' history.

It's a damn shame these guys couldn't make it to album 3. Thing is, Andy Sturmer from what I hear makes Andy Partridge sound like a total sellout. Great conceptualists have a hard time yielding their concepts to be busted on the wheel of radio and retail. Anyway, album three wouldn've been their Black Sea and it's tragic that they never got there.

So many things never happen that should. It makes you feel out of control sometimes. All the bands that seemed like they were the next amazing thing and they had a bus crash or went into receivership or some shit. The Crystal Mittens come to mind. This was Johnny Tomorrow's band before we did the Malarians and they were the heat right there. Oh, my gOD. Gary Rzab on the kit? Like Copeland on industrial grade speed.

Anyway, Jellyfish's second album Spilt Milk is a vast and wildly beautiful piece of work, a scratcher of many, many itches and a chewily ambitious affair. Released in early '93, it caught me right as I relocated to Calif. to make my ugly little lunge, ergo its ability to evoke the vast landscaped pastures of Orange County and the glamour of Hollywood (ha ha ha ha ha) to this punter. Seriously, this god damned record is so lovingly constructed and so informed by ambitious influences that it sounds quite archetypal.

I know the bitch with Jellyfish is that they were super derivative. I never had a problem with that myself 'cause I started hearing great music in 1979 as we know so if anything the primer I got in '60's and early '70's music from Jellyfish was a blessing. I, for one, always found that they sounded suspiciously like Jellyfish.

Thing is, album three would've broken all that into pieces. It is powerful to hear the beginnings of the greatness on Fear Of Music that blooms into Remain In Light, the intimations of Skylarking on The Big Express, of For Your Pleasure on Roxy Music. Sometimes it takes a little while, a record or a few, to achieve that diamond-sharp defining moment. What a wonderful destination that is. Holy shit. Everybody knows when an artist sews themselves thus into The Tapestry. Everybody catches wind of that shit.

Yay, Jellyfish. Let's put Spilt Milk on the next Voyager.


Anonymous the brentmeister general said...

Good call, man. Jellyfish are the business, the cat's pyjamas, the dog's bollocks, the BEE'S FUCKING KNEES!!!!

Whatever happened to Andy Sturmer?

8:07 AM  
Blogger Employee of the Month said...


10:06 AM  
Blogger Neddie said...

Betcha didn't know, Jason Falkner and Andy Partridge have been Introduced, and They Like What They See.

Seriously. Possible Collaboration.

And then he looked North, and saw that Pal Wes had been there before him.

9:26 PM  
Blogger Simon said...

Jellyfish was a breathe of fresh air when I was desperately listening for *anything* that appealed to me.

Picked up 'Split Milk' the day I saw it come out. The Owner of the Record Store turned the Girl Who Did The Orders and said 'I wondered who'd buy this fucking thing - don't order any more'. He could have at least waited until after he'd bagged it for me...

6:34 AM  

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