1/  Clean Plate                                (Fier,Lindsay)                6.28
  2/  Hot Seat                                   (Fier,Miller,Noyes)           5.14
  3/  Under The Cap                              (Fier,Lindsay)                5.33
  4/  Monday Night                               (Fier,Lindsay)                6.31
  5/  Cookout                                    (Fier)                        4.38
  6/  I.D.                                       (Fier,Lindsay)                6.45
  7/  Two Sided Fist                             (Fier,Lindsay,Frith)          7.45

          Recorded at Radio City Music Hall Studio and OAO Studio, New York, 1983
          Engineered by Martin Bisi and Don Hunerberg
          Mixed by Martin Bisi, Bill Laswell and Anton Fier at OAO Studio, Brooklyn
            and RPM Studio, NYC
          Assistant at RPM: Mike Krowiak
          Produced by Bill Laswell and Anton Fier
          Associate Producers: Martin Bisi and Arto Lindsay
          Executive Producers: Karakos and Roger Trilling
          Bandcamp version remastered by James Dellatacoma at Orange Music, West Orange, NJ
Anton Fier: drums, percussion (1,2,4,6), DMX (2,4,5); Arto Lindsay: vocals (1,3,4,6,7), guitar (2,3,4,6); Fred Frith: guitar (1,6,7), violin (1,7); Bill Laswell: prepared fretless bass (1), 6 string bass (1), 4 and 8 string basses (2,7), shortwave (2), Steinberger bass (3,5), slide bass (3), fretless bass (4,6), piano strings (5), turntables (5); Jamaaladeen Tacuma: Steinberger bass (1,7); David Moss: non rhythmic percussion (1,7), Bertoia sound sculptures (3); John Zorn (1,2,3,4,6,7): alto saxophone, clarinets, game calls; M.E. Miller: vocals (2), turntables (2,4); Michael Beinhorn : treatments (1), DMX bass drum (1), piano (5); Nicky Skopelitis: guitar (4,6); Thi-Linh Le: vocals (4); Roger Trilling: records (5).

          1983 - OAO/Celluloid (France), CEL  6662 (Vinyl)
          1983 - OAO/Celluloid (USA), CELL 5002 (Vinyl)
          1983 - OAO/Celluloid (USA), CELD  5002 (CD)
          1983 - OAO/Celluloid (USA), CELCD 5002 (CD)
          1984 - OAO Records (UK), 001 (Vinyl)
          1992 - Jimco Records (Japan), JICK-89055 (CD)
          2022 - Bill Laswell Bandcamp (Bassmatter Subscription Exclusive)


The first effort from Anton Fier's revolving-door band is the record which most reflects the group's downtown New York origins. Recalling the avant-funk of Material, The Golden Palominos spotlights a core roster of Fier, guitarists Arto Lindsay and Fred Frith, bassist Bill Laswell, and multi-instrumentalist John Zorn; the music is wildly experimental, incorporating turntables and other hip-hop staples (a rather adventurous notion back in 1983) as well as other oddball ideas (clarinets played underwater and the like) which miss the mark as often as they hit, but make for fascinating listening nevertheless.

3 stars out of 5

Jason Ankeny (courtesy of the All Music Guide website)


The New York studio collective known as The Golden Palominos were well-known for changing musical styles more frequently then people change their clothes. On their 1983 self-titled debut, drummer & group leader Anton Fier reels into the studio some of New York's most well-known, avant-garde jazz-fusion greats, such as Bill Laswell, Fred Frith, Arto Lindsay, and John Zorn. To sum them up in a single sentence, this 1st incarnation of the group sounds like King Crimson times two. It's a very bizarre, eclectic, progressive-sounding hodgepodge of funk, jazz, strange noises, vocal gibberish, and instrumental noodling. The first time I played this album, I was very perplexed---this wasn't the Palominos group I knew and loved from "Pure" and "This Is How It Feels" (and boy, did I miss Lori Carson's lovely voice). But after several more spins, the album finally grew on me. It's pretty trippy stuff and it's not for everybody, but there's no denying how daring & envelope-pushing this original version of the Palominos were. The best stuff on this disc are the funky jams "Clean Plate," "Monday Night," and "I.D.," featuring solid thump-drumming from Fier, Bill Laswell's fat basslines, and Arto Lindsay's weird, off-kilter vocals, while experimental exercises like "Hot Seat" and "Cookout" are also very intriguing. This album would be the Golden Palominos' only trip down the avant-garde jazz-fusion road, as Anton Fier would bring in a whole new set of musicians & singers for the group's next album, the more accessible "Visions Of Excess," including R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe, Jack Bruce of Cream, and the Sex Pistol's John Lydon. But it all started here---the Golden Palominos' self-titled debut is a very bold album that pulls no punches, and it won't appeal to everyone. But for those who can handle it, there is much to admire.

4 out of 5 stars

Alan Caylow (courtesy of the website)