Choose a word from the following: Warped, debased, putrid, twisted. And one from these: Brilliance, originality, ingenuity, inventiveness. And there you have this album pretty much reviewed and condensed into two words. For the record I’d have gone for “Twisted Brilliance” for this is what you have here. Let Me Hang You is not for the faint of heart or those easily offended, but then William Burroughs reading some of his most outrageously degenerate but simultaneously entertaining and unsettling passages from his Naked Lunch novel of 1959 was never going to be. If you don’t know Naked Lunch then look it out and devour it before it consumes you!

Burroughs_let_me_hang_you

Burroughs died in 1997 but made the recording used here shortly before his demise at 83. Now 83 is a good innings on anyone’s scorecard, but given Burroughs proclivity for a lifestyle that was clearly going to do you no good at all, eight decades plus three years is nothing short of phenomenal.

Producer Hal Willner of Lou Reed and Marianne Faithfull fame and Burroughs’ manager James Grauerholz recruited a team of world class musicians including Grammy winning guitarist Bill Frisell, pianist/keyboard player Wayne Horvitz and violist Eyvind Kang to add a touch of their experimental brilliance over the course of several sessions to the guttural spoken word recordings of Burroughs. However, these recordings were abandoned and left to putrefy on some forgotten basement’s shelf until 2015 when Willner revisited the recordings.

Not content to release the original recordings further degenerate input to proceedings was sought from the unconventional Canadian punk/soul frontman King Khan. Willner had originally met King Khan in 2010 when he performed as The King Khan and BBQ Show at Sydney Opera House as part of a festival curated by Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson. Khan in turn looked for contributions from vocalist/composer M Lamar (creator of the Negrogothic manifesto and the identical twin brother of transgender actress Laverne Cox) and Australian psych/punk act The Frowning Clouds.

So what of the content? What can you say? It’s musically disturbing backdrop adds texture and understanding to Burroughs drawl that revolts and provokes as well as excites and inspires. Is it easy listening, well of course it isn’t! Let Me Hang You is twelve unsettling and unpleasant aural assaults on the senses and imagination that has you picturing the scenes of depravity that are laid before you in glorious debaseOvision.

‘Let  Me Hang You’ was released by Ernest Jenning Record Co/Khannibalism on 15th July 2016 and is essential!

Tracklisting :

1 The Exterminator

2 Manhattan Serenade

3 Baboon

4 This You Gotta Hear

5 Disciplinary Procedures

6 The Afterbirth King

7 Leif The Unlucky

8 Let Me Hang You

9 Islam Inc

10 The Queen Bee

11 Clem Snide The Private Asshole

12 Gentle Reader

13 Quick

 

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