Monday, August 24, 2009
The Golden Palominos -1983 (Celluloid)
The Golden Palominos were an American musical group headed by drummer and composer Anton Fier, first formed in 1981. Aside from Fier, the Palominos membership was wildly elastic, with only bassist Bill Laswell and guitarist Nicky Skopelitis appearing on every album.
While the Palominos' records usually featured a core set of musicians and a certain emotional continuity throughout the bulk of an album, various guest appearances would result in stylistic changes from track to track.
The group first featured Fier, singer-guitarist Arto Lindsay, saxophonist John Zorn, bass guitarist Bill Laswell and violinist/guitarist Fred Frith. Their self-titled debut album was released on New York's Celluloid Records in 1983, and featured guest appearances by bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma, guitarist Nicky Skopelitis, percussionist David Moss, guitarist/singer Bob Kidney, turntablist M.E. Miller and others. The album is notable for having some of the first recorded turntable scratching outside of rap music, courtesy of Laswell and M.E. Miller. M.E.Miller also used vocal splitting technique to create harmony on the song he sings.
They were heavily influenced by so-called no wave music (Arto Lindsay had played in the seminal no-wave band DNA), but their music also contained elements of funk and of the improvisational jazz stylings that would become Zorn's trademark. This line-up lasted only for the first record, although all of the core members apart from Zorn would guest on subsequent Palominos recordings.