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Spotlight Kid & Clear Spot
Captain Beefheart
Spotlight Kid & Clear Spot
Genres: Alternative Rock, Special Interest, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock
  •  Track Listings (22) - Disc #1

In 1972 it probably seemed like the year belonged to a blues-tinged wall-of-sound rock band--maybe Deep Purple, who recorded Made in Japan that year--but from an aesthetic vantage, the blues-rock mantle has to go Captain B...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Captain Beefheart
Title: Spotlight Kid & Clear Spot
Members Wishing: 15
Total Copies: 0
Label: Reprise / Ada
Release Date: 10/19/1990
Genres: Alternative Rock, Special Interest, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock
Styles: Hardcore & Punk, Experimental Music, Blues Rock, Progressive, Progressive Rock, Psychedelic Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 075992624923

Synopsis essential recording
In 1972 it probably seemed like the year belonged to a blues-tinged wall-of-sound rock band--maybe Deep Purple, who recorded Made in Japan that year--but from an aesthetic vantage, the blues-rock mantle has to go Captain Beefheart. In 1972 producer Ted Templeman took the controls for a pair of stunning Beefheart diamonds (in the rough of course), The Spotlight Kid and Clear Spot, both collected here in full on one CD. Beefheart's voice sounds rightly inimitable, growly and gruff and lyrically cryptic. For its part, the Magic Band is in top form as well, integrating marimba and an assortment of percussion into the slide guitar forestry. There's a distinct and good reason that the celebrated Beefheart box set of rarities is called Grow Fins: the tune, as it appears on this collection, is a classic terrain-defying testament of love as only Don Van Vliet (Beefheart) could provide, a surreal and funny little tune caught in a skein of rough-hewn music that's stood the test of time splendidly. --Andrew Bartlett

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CD Reviews

The people of 2000 must rediscover Captain Beefheart!
Steven Vacca | Christiansburg, Virginia USA | 06/12/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I am 42 years old and have been a Zappa fan for many years. I've always heard of Beefheart (Willie the Pimp), but never knew much about him. After reading some music reviews I decided to check out Trout Mask Replica. And I thank the heavens for that. For most people, several listenings of Trout are required, but from the very start of Frownland, I was totally blown away by this completely unique, non-conformist, unconventional stuff which I had never ever been exposed to before. Vliet's voice is so cool, and his whole way of looking at things is so refreshing, mesmerizing, and creative. I will always look at things differently from now on because of Don Van Vliet (check out his abstract paintings). People of the next millenium, you must re-discover this one-of-a-kind "no-rules", "free-form", masterfully-produced brand of music. The mold, as with Zappa, was made once and broken. I recently downloaded a 1972 performance of Beefheart and band doing "I'm Gonna Booglarize You Baby" on a TV show in Germany and watched it on RealPlayer. I highly recommend this for the avid Beefheart fan. It was so good. And it shows how good he and his band really were. That's all I have to say. If you want to really open your mind up and experience true "non-commercial" yet extremely creative music, go ahead and start with Trout Mask Replica and then try this CD. And remember, most people (conformists who dare not be different) do not get Captain Beefheart and never will. So ignore their ignorant criticisms, turn on, tune in, and do drop into the best musical experiences you'll ever have."
This is the Place to Start Your Discovery of Don Van Vliet
Randall E. Adams | Los Angeles, CA United States | 11/21/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"It's been a lot of years, but I can still remember the disbelief that I felt when listening to each of these two albums when they first came out. I could "get" them, although they were just on the outside edge of my musical comprehension. I was not able to "get" the earlier double album "Trout Mask Replica"--it was just too avant garde.I recommend this fine reissue of Captain Beefheart's two 1972 albums on Warner Bros for an introduction to this man's great music. These records offer a nearly perfect balance of art and accessibility and if you hear these for the first time now, you will not believe how modern they are. It took everyone else a VERY long time to catch up with the Captain's musical ideas. Now you will know where bands like Wall of Voodoo, The Birthday Party and The Fall got their inspiration from."The Spotlight Kid" is the more consistent album,in my opinion. It sprawls with a languid dissonant blues groove. What was originally Side Two of the album (tracks 6 through 10 here) is a relentless string of modern jazz/blues genius. Do you like your blues with marimba? Try keeping track of the rhythym to "Click Clack"--the freshest railroad blues you'll ever hear. In 2002, anybody could cover "There Ain't No Santa Claus on the Evenin' Stage" and sound like they'd just written one of the highlights of their career. Only Don Van Vliet (Beefheart's legal name) could mix sardonic humor and poignancy so delicately.The high points of "Clear Spot" may exceed even the peaks mentioned above, particularly the dissonant swamp rock of the title track and the exciting psychedelic guitar blues opus "Big Eyed Beans from Venus." However, "Clear Spot" also included a few inexplicable and inappropriate attempts to cut "normal records"--"Too Much Time" being the chief culprit. You'll forget it immediately. In all, it's a less consistent effort.Don Van Vliet was and is a genuine genius, a profoundly gifted poet, musician and painter, all of which talents are on display on this release. He and Frank Zappa grew up together in the very unpromising environs of Lancaster, California."
frnick | savannah, ga. United States | 10/13/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This Captain Beefheart is some of his greatest material. It is also easy for the pedestrian fan to enjoy as well. But beware! You may become a real fan!I started listening to Beefheart at 13 years old when "Safe As Milk" first hit the shelves. I have never been the same since.And now, 36 years later, I am still a big fan. And, every time I listen to a Beefheart album, I hear something new and it seems fresh all over again.His stuff is still better tahn 99 0/0 of what passes for cutting edge today.Buy and listen to these two cds in the same package. It will open your mind.The good Captain will Booglerize you."