The amazing, psychedelic cover of ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand’ by pre-ZZ Top band the Moving Sidewalks
08:52 am

The Beatles have been covered countless times over the years, and while it’s essentially impossible to best the original recordings, there are a few choice cover versions out there. One of the most interesting that I’ve heard was done by a Houston band in 1968.

The Moving Sidewalks were fronted by Billy Gibbons, who’s best known today as the guitarist for ZZ Top. Beginning in 1967, the Moving Sidewalks released a handful of singles and an album, before calling it a day by the end of the decade.
Moving Sidewalks 1
Though they started out as a garage rock band—check out the Gibbons-penned “99th Floor”—their sound would soon evolve. Taking inspiration from local heroes the 13th Floor Elevators, as well as the debut record by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, the Moving Sidewalks morphed into a bluesy psychedelic band. In February 1968, they were asked to open four shows for the Jimi Hendrix Experience—and jumped at the chance. Following the Fort Worth gig, Gibbons was invited to participate in a backstage jam session with Hendrix, and afterwards the two traded guitars. Hendrix would later praise Gibbons in the media, citing him as one of his favorite guitarists. 
Moving Sidewalks 2
Jimi Hendrix with the Moving Sidewalks, Fort Worth, Texas, February 17th, 1968. Billy Gibbons is second from the right.

The non-LP A-side of the third Moving Sidewalks single, released later in 1968, was an inspired cover of the Beatles’ “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” Re-imagined as a psych tune, it’s slow-n-heavy, reminiscent of the sort of treatment the Vanilla Fudge gave the Motown song, “You Keep Me Hanging On.” There’s also speculation that the arrangement was influenced by Hendrix’s cover of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” which he had been performing live. Regardless, it’s an amazingly cool version.

50 years on, the way-rare 45 has yet to been reissued, so if you want a copy of the Moving Sidewalks’s cover of “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” your best bet is their 2012 compilation, The Complete Collection.
Moving Sidewalks 3
The Moving Sidewalks performed “I Want to Hold Your Hand” during their reunion show in New York City on March 30th, 2013. It was their first gig in 44 years.

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
The explosive teenage garage rock of Pittsburgh proto-punks, the Swamp Rats
‘The Black Door’: This dark-n-moody 1968 song is a Doors rip-off—and it’s awesome
The Koala: These snotty ‘60s garage punks put out just one album—and it’s fantastic

Posted by Bart Bealmear
08:52 am
ZZ Top fan recreates the ‘Tres Hombres’ gatefold meal and then eats it
11:43 am

It’s arguably the greatest LP gatefold image of all time: the drool-inducing food porn Mexican spread from the inner fold of ZZ Top’s 1973 Tres Hombres album. Only Coven’s Witchcraft Destroys Minds & Reap Souls comes close to matching it’s exemplary use of the medium, but as far as gatefold images go, it’s hard to top THE TOP.

In what is destined to be the the greatest short film of 2016, Austin chef Thomas Micklethwait lovingly re-creates this enviable meal and proceeds to eat the shit out of it.

As someone who has often dreamt of being at that fabled table, all I can say is kudos to the chef for allowing me to live vicariously through him and yet not have to experience the following day’s Afterburner tribute.

Fans of ZZ Top or grande burritos, take note:

Posted by Christopher Bickel
11:43 am
‘Skool Of Rock’ mix: over 60 minutes of fist-pumping Disco-Rock anthems

OK, enough of the hating between the rockers and the disco-freaks! This ain’t the damn 70s, so why can’t we all just get along? In love, peace and some sweat-drenched bell bottoms? Besides, there is a big crossover between these two supposedly “opposing” genres.

About five or six years ago, at the height of both nu-disco and the Italo revival (and while I was releasing music under the name Trippy Disco), I found myself playing more and more vintage disco records with crashing power-chords and wailing axe solos. Because of the “sell out” accusations that these kind of records attracted at the time (from both camps) it’s a side of disco that’s been neglected, even though I love those sounds. So, I decided to put together an hour’s worth of my favourite disco/rock records, and, lo, the ‘Skool Of Rock’ mix was born.

I decided not to feature anything too “New Wave” or post-punk as the disco influence on those sounds was already very obvious, though I did get to slip in a few acts who would technically be classed as “disco” but who dipped into “rock” now and again (Edwin Starr and Giorgio Moroder, for instance.) And accordingly, there’s also the obligatory disco cash-ins by some of your favourite rock acts (Queen, Bowie, ZZ Top.)  Besides that, there are some real gems here, including the Patrick Cowley remix of Tantra’s “Hills Of Katmandu” which is one the most “fuck yeah!” fist-pumping disco anthems of all time.

So, you might love this mix, you might really hate it, but either way here it is: 


ELO “Don’t Bring Me Down (Trippy Disco Re-Edit)”
ROCKETS “On The Road Again”
CHILLY “For Your Love”
KISS “I Was Made For Lovin’ You”
TANTRA “Hills Of Katmandu (Patrick Cowley Megamix / Automan Edit)”
LED ZEPPELIN “Whole Lotta Love (Acapella)”
MATERIAL “Bustin’ Out”
ZZ TOP “Legs (Metal Mix)”
MACHO “Not Tonight (Dimitri From Paris Re-Edit)”
SKATT BROS “Walk The Night (Album Version)”
QUEEN “Another One Bites The Dust”
WINGS “Goodnight Tonight (Trippy Disco Re-Edit)”

You can download the ‘Skool Of Rock’ mix here.


David Bowie performing “Stay”, live on Muzikladen, Bremen 1978:



Posted by Niall O'Conghaile
07:12 pm
David Lynch and ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons discuss machines and technology

Billy Gibbons Painting by Eileen Martin from Fine Art America

This is taken from today’s Guardian newspaper’s Film & Music section, which has been guest edited by David Lynch, and it makes for one of the most bizarre “music” interviews ever published:

Gibbons and Lynch – but mainly Gibbons, with the occasional “Doggone right” and “Exactly right, Billy” from Lynch – are talking about the beauty and power of industry. About the roar of factories, the growl of engines, about how the clang and clank speak to something within us. We’re meant to be talking about the block and tackle pulley system, but it’s pretty clear from the start that none of us can sustain a conversation about that, and so the block and tackle is just the key that starts the motor that in turn drives our discussion down the highway.

For Lynch, in any case, the block and tackle seems to be as much metaphor as literal device. It’s a system of pulleys, designed to enable a person to lift a greater weight than they could unaided. The pulley was invented around 2,400 years ago by the Greek philosopher Archytas, a scientist of the Pythagorean school (he’s also thought to have been the first person to invent a flying machine. Bright boy; his mother must have been proud). Then Archimedes realised the simple pulley could be expanded into something with even greater power – the block and tackle system, which he designed to help sailors lift ever greater loads, according to Plutarch. Thousands of years later, the basic system is unchanged: the block is the pulleys – the more pulleys you put in the block, the less the force you need to apply – and the tackle is the rest of the of the apparatus.

“I heard about the block and tackle and I’ve seen it work and it seems so magical,” Lynch says of his fascination. “It’s connected in my mind with the American car” – one of its common usages is to lift the engine block from the body of a vehicle – “and it’s kind of perfect that Billy talks about it. Billy had got a kind of guitar power – I always like the idea that his guitar is gasoline-powered.” That’s not quite the only reason Gibbons is joining us today. When Lynch originally asked for a piece about the block and tackle in this week’s Film&Music, we pointed out that the section dealt with film and music, rather than physics and mechanics. Lynch, though, was insistent. OK, he said, if you’re only going to do it if it’s got a film or music angle, then you can have ZZ Top talking about the block and tackle. And here we are


Read the full article David Lynch and ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons dream about machines over at The Guardian.

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile
01:47 pm