DOWN TO VERY LAST FEW COPIES
Back in 1996, Pelt and Rake began playing a series of shows together, and a series of labels began rejecting proposals for a joint album. There were versions of this record we can't even remember now. There have been bits of Pelt/Rake sessions on several comps, but finally something longer has seen the light of day, or what passes for day in the offices of Eclipse Records. United Supreme Council (taken from a sign on a Masonic building near one of the Pelt/ Rake shows not included on this record) Oastem Vibe Orchestra (maybe VVGG can explain) relates the center portion of a Rake alone/Rake plus Pelt/Pelt alone/ Pelt plus Armature/Armature alone noise war that took place at a party in Tommy's apartment in Richmond, Va., in April 1997. Pelt had a couple hand drummers along that spring, so the lineup was Rex: bass, percussion; V2G2: nylon string acoustic guitar, delay crunch loop, percussion, chanting, maybe clarinet too; CC: drums, sax, moog; Patrick: bowed cymbals, bass resonator, conga; Jack: bowed cymbal, guitar; Mike: guitar, shenai, beat frequency oscillator; Mick Simmons & Beth Jones: dumbeks and djembes. The playing took place in the central room of an odd, donut-shaped suite and people circulated through and around the performance for several hours. At one point a version of Tommy's band was conducting a counter-jam in the kitchen. At another point people threw pennies into a colander to pay the bands' travel expenses. My keenest memory is of Beth, Mick, Patrick, CC, V2G2 and Rex all banging their lengths of log while Jack and I held the strings in front of the speakers. None of this description is evident anywhere in the packaging, which features a nice picture (of a chair) that took V2G2 and Rex about three years to pull together. It's a quality pressing, the sort of thing that made Eclipse the new bar to cross, and I think only 300 copies were created.