Skerlak Dead's tunes from the vault

Apparently, Not Quite Dead, But...

Sometimes some really weird shit comes across my desk, like this album,

Remnants Resolved

, by

Skerlak Dead

with four songs this Phoenix-based guy M. Skerlak recorded back in 1984, and two that he recorded in 1961. According to his


page, dude is 61 years old, and he's working on a disc with new material, but doesn't expect to have anything new ready until mid-summer this year.

What's interesting to me is the time vault aspect. The four songs from the '80s are pretty hilarious. "What You've Done" kicks off with some funny synths and guitars over a mid-tempo jangly rhythm; the other three are in much the same vein, a solid reminder that there was some very bad music going down in the '80s. They're pretty girl-obsessed ("Do you want to dance and hold me tight?" Skerlak asks in "Ms. Right." The other two are "Hustle Bar" and "Prettiest Brown Eyes." It's not '80s in the new wave sense, just bar music that I can imagine going down well at some open mic nights.

The last two though, from 1961 are actually pretty interesting. "Keep Walking" has a bit of a doo-wop feel to it, and both songs were recorded onto a single-track reel with two mics and three amps in a New Jersey cellar. "I Remember" is a little more soulful, with some interesting harmonizing. There's a seventh track on the CD that's not listed on the album, or mentioned, that sounds like it could be more recent work.

So the Skerlak Dead EP has me wondering exactly what this dude is working on now. In the "interests" section of his myspace page, he writes, "local bars, smoking, staying home and hanging out. Not into all the healthy stuff and do not want to be. Haven't been in a real social setting in so long, that I am not sure if I remember what to do." Shut-in, antisocial songwriters are always a kick, so I'll be watching for the next one to see what this dude does. Go to his myspace page, poor guy's only got 15 friends...

"Hustle Bar": http://media.newtimes.com/id/698913/

"Untitled Track": http://media.newtimes.com/id/698915/

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