Song Of The Day 9/28/2015: Rex Garvin & the Mighty Cravers – “Strange Happenings”

Vital Organs – On points, there’s much more guitar than organ on this record, but the organ meets the minimum requirements for inclusion in this theme. I have the actual limits written down somewhere. I think they’re next to the recipe binder in the kitchen bookshelf. Anyway, I think you’ll all agree there’s more than enough juice in Rex Garvin & the Mighty Gravers’ “Strange Happenings” to kick your languishing corpuscles into overdrive. To me, it’s the random explosions that really make this number. That’s a production detail that has no rational explanation from an arrangement standpoint. I don’t think one is needed. Explosions just are. There’s no way to introduce them or put them in context. Same deal here.

Rex Garvin & the Mighty Cravers made some pitch-perfect instrumentals in the ’60s and ’70s, full of roughhousing and recklessness. Their impact on the R&B charts was undeservedly minor. In fact, here’s a sentence I am pretty sure has never been issued before: “They didn’t break through to the masses until Yo La Tengo covered them.” The Garvin original “Emulsified” was arguably the highlight of YLT’s 1990 album Fakebook. Elsewhere in the Garvin canon you’ll find a blistering number called “Sock It To ’Em J.B.” both a James Brown and James Bond tribute. It includes a recitation of all the James Bond films through 1966, which may or may not have influenced Damon Albarn when he contributed “Closet Romantic” to the Trainspotting soundtrack. Probably not, but let’s leave all options on the table just in case.

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