Friday, November 19, 2010


"Based in Turners Falls, MA, Flaming Dragons Of Middle Earth are the brainchild of visionary wheelchair-bound ‘band shaman’ Danny Cruz, who leads an ensemble of rotating non-musicians, artists, oddballs, kids with Down Syndrome etc in weekly jams at a community resource centre..."

The vinyl-only release "Seed of Contempt," another one from Feeding Tube Records, is a true outsider-music artifact, an astonishing blizzard of unrestrained audio mayhem played by kids who aren't trying in the slightest to be cool, professional, or show-biz. 'Twas all mastered off of live cassettes. I'll let Danny himself explain:

Flaming Dragons of Middle Earth "Not Really Causing A Fire"

Like a lot of teenage boys, Danny loves heavy metal, and indeed, there is a Sabbath riff somewhere in this minute-long shard of broken sound:

Flaming Dragons of Middle Earth "Speed Kills"

but apart from all the metal references in both the music and the album's artwork, Cruz' mentions of avant-jazz legend Sun Ra implies that not all of the free-form lunacy in these grooves is simply the result of jam-session sloppiness. And certainly Cruz'
description of his "apocalyptic improvisational lyrics" could apply to the music too.

This almost-lovely piano tune makes Daniel Johnston sound Top-40 normal:

Flaming Dragons of Middle Earth "Anarchists of Punk Rock"

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