N O V E M B E R   2 0 0 9

• • • Savoy profiled at Ballardian

JG Ballard in Corridor magazine.

Our debt to the influence of JG Ballard goes back almost fifty years to when we first read his work in New Worlds and the Berkley paperbacks. His dedication to a challenging and, at times, unpalatable vision was always an inspiration. Whether mining his psyche for the dystopian psychodrama of Crash, or the childhood memories of Empire of the Sun, he remained true to his imagination. His example showed the importance of following your creative instincts even if those instincts lead you to places where an audience is reluctant to travel; if you wait long enough, eventually the audience will follow.

So we're delighted that Simon Sellars' definitive Ballard site, Ballardian, has commenced a three-part Savoy feature. In the first part posted here, Michael Butterworth discusses Ballard's Savoy connections and influence with Mike Holliday. The second part will deal with Savoy's musical and spoken word releases including Lord Horror, The Waste Land, and Fenella Fielding's reading of Crash. Part three will examine Savoy's visual dimension from comics and illustration to book design.

And for those whose life is a hollow sham without David Britton's first Lord Horror novel, here's your chance to win a very rare copy of the book as well as other Savoy goods. Not a crappy multiple-choice competition, you'll need to exercise your brain for this one.

O C T O B E R   2 0 0 9

• • • Penny Blood News: Important Announcement by Baron von Guidio

Baron Guidio is pictured with attendant Space Fairies.

UK-based outlet Hemlock Books are now stocking issues of Penny Blood magazine whose most recent number included a Savoy feature. (See January 2009 entry below for further details.) Copies can be had for £5.99 here.

J U N E   2 0 0 9

• • • Kim Fowley sleevenotes for the Fenella album


left: Fowley in a recent issue of Mojo magazine; right: a portrait.

The Legendary Kim Fowley joins the Savoy Family!

Fowley requires no introduction for music aficionados, being the eminence grise behind a host of rock'n'roll classics. He recorded the Rivingtons just prior to their infecting the world with that gibberish meisterwerk, Papa Oom Mow Mow, and produced Alley Oop by the Hollywood Argyles; he has connections with Savoy faves Frank Zappa and with that mercurial talent, PJ Proby. Anyone who's looked over Fowley's comprehensive website will recognise an astute man cultivating a potent rock'n'roll persona.


"One of the most colourful characters in the annals of rock and roll, Kim Fowley was, over the course of his decades-long career, a true jack-of-all-trades; a singer, songwriter, producer and manager — as well as a disc jockey and published poet — he was the catalyst behind much of the music to emerge from the Los Angeles area during the 1960s and 1970s, guiding his associates and proteges to fame and fortune while remaining himself a shadowy cult figure well outside the margins of the mainstream."

Read more at Allmusic.

La Squab
La Squab If his CV wasn't already enough, Fowley is also a deft wielder of the pen, which makes him the perfect choice to deliver a suitably high-octane introduction for the new Fenella Fielding album, Fenella Fielding: The Savoy Sessions, forthcoming from Savoy. A Gridley Wave transmission from the Dying Earth. Here's a taste of his Excellent Prismatic Spray...


FENELLA FIELDING IS! A 21st Century Goddess of Audio Art and Noise Illusion!

Captain MarvelHollywood USA... Hey folks, it’s an obvious fact, we’re at the End Of The World. Life, as we KNEW it, is over. All we have are text messages — cell phones — and downloadable teardrops... Black is the New Mainstream... Gay is the New Black... Murder is the New Orgasm... Orgasm is the New Flaw.

Captain MarvelSo we need a Bit of Yesterday to get us through this Robotic-Time-Warp-Blip, that makes relaxing IMPOSSIBLE! This bit of Yesterday turns out to be... not a Legend of Yesterday, but a Prophet/Priestess of Tomorrow.

Her Succulent/Velvet-Blue-Saloon vocal tones made me believe I was having Naked Lunch in a Berlin bubble-bath, next to Marlene Dietrich... Somewhere in Berlin, circa 1928-1932.

Hence, we have a message in an aural bottle, from a 21st Century Axis Sally/Tokyo Rose: Fenella Fielding.

Bring on the smelling salts! Then give me the Silver-Spoon and Golden Needle, so I can blend into the Wonder-Word Void, where Ms Fielding must surely reside.

Fenella’s delivery of the following titles places me squarely at the foot of her bed, on my knees, in a position of worship!

*   *   *


La Squab Fenella's incendiary album is another unique Savoy blend of the high and the low, the fine and the furious, the rich and the strange. A gift for lovers of the surreal.

Digital copies will be available via iTunes, eMusic and the rest courtesy of our fabulous internet distributor, The Orchard. Hard copies will be available direct from Savoy. Release date to be announced when PR plans are firmly in place. Watch the skies!

For more on Kim Fowley’s history and mystery, get on over to www.kimfowley.com

Pictures of La Squab and Captain Marvel by Mr. Kris Guidio.

F E B R U A R Y   2 0 0 9

• • • Kris Guidio pays tribute to Lux Interior

Ivy and Kris

Poison Ivy with Kris Guidio, early 1980s (photo by Lux Interior).

Mark Hagan, fellow veteran of numerous Cramps concerts across Europe and eventual evolutionist behind Top Of The Pops, once told me that he could never believe in coincidence. He reiterated the conviction when he called recently to see if I knew that Lux had died in the early hours of a February morning in California. I did. David Britton and Michael Butterworth had phoned an hour before with the news. Then my daughter, Ariel, who lives in Arizona, rang to say it had been mentioned on a local radio station. The world seems to get suddenly smaller when someone of merit leaves it.

David, author and semi-recluse, and man of a certain literary notoriety, had asked me to contribute to a collection of essays and articles concerning The Cramps. I was just polishing what I thought was the finished thing when he and Michael called.

The Haunt of the Cramps

Guidio artwork from Lyndsay Hutton’s The Next Big Thing, reproduced in Sounds, March 21st 1981.

Two and a half decades ago, Sounds published an early Cramps drawing of mine, still surviving today in the booklet to the Psychedelic Jungle CD. It was that arbitrary twist of an editor’s fancy that first brought me to David's attention and, subsequently, to a long and litigious adventure with Savoy Books. I think it’s appropriate to occasionally give coincidence its due.

Lord Horror

Lord Horror. From Hard Core Horror #2, 1990.

Of course, from the primal to the priory, everything changes and everything ends; and we sift through the dreams and the stains and the memories, and we keep what's worth keeping, and what we've still got room for, and quietly dispose of the rest.

In their first hurricane days, at least, The Cramps really were the "hottest thing from the north to come out of the south", and we will never see their like again. Especially now.

I’m really quite sad (as I know you are too) that Lux went to keep his date with Elvis so soon.

Kris Guidio
February 10th, 2009, Liverpool

Excerpted from ‘Other Worlds: The Story of The Cramps and Savoy Books’ by Martin Jones, to be included in our forthcoming anthology Tales From the Savoy.

F E B R U A R Y   2 0 0 9

• • • Lux Interior of The Cramps passes away at the Glendale Memorial Hospital

Lux Interior

That exhilarating manifestation of deviant intent and skull-denting impact remains Lux and Ivy's exclusive domain. Where punk rock was a barrage of refutation that fomented rabid exultation, the Cramps reclaimed the hillbilly power long since flushed down the Mersey. Through a self-stated "disdain for the myth of musical progress," they melded their mutant propensities to emerge as a guiding voice in the wilderness, a commanding force that redefined the rock n roll spectrum while outgunning almost everyfuckingbody in the game.

The LA Weekly on the Cramps' singer, lyricist, cultural archaeologist and a fantastic stage presence. Our heartfelt sympathies to Ivy and to Lux's family.

J A N U A R Y   2 0 0 9

• • • Penny Blood feature

Penny Blood

Penny BloodA new edition of American horror magazine, Penny Blood (issue #11), is out on the stands featuring one of the very best pieces about Savoy and its history – ‘Lords of Horror: The Trials and Triumphs of Savoy Books’.

Flicking through the magazine's slick, intelligent, gore-soaked pages, with 'Some New Kind Of Kick' by the Cramps on the CD player adding gravitas to the splendidly erudite and savvy article by Quentin Dunne, we were confounded: it’s quite the best thing that’s been done on Savoy in recent times. We can fully recommend Penny Blood to all interested Savoy aficionados, and extend a great thank you to the magazine’s editor, Nick Louras, and Mr Dunne for this coverage. It’s pleasing that both this and Keith’s Seward’s recent book on us, Horror Panegyric, have appeared in the US, something that may be a sign of resurgent interest for us there after so many years of being marginalized in Britain.

By coincidence this edition of Penny Blood also contains an intimate conversation with performance artist and musician Genesis P Orridge (Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV). Genesis and David Britton could be described as ‘old boys’ of North Manchester, having both been born in what Dave avers is the 'arsehole of England', Dave having escaped into Horror, Gen into Magick. And oddly enough there's a further connection in the spectral form of William Burroughs. Genesis and fellow Gristle-ite Peter Christopherson (later of Coil) were in regular contact with Burroughs at about the time Savoy was planning a UK edition of Burroughs' novels (including a first UK publication of Cities of the Red Night) and Michael Butterworth was putting together the Brion Gysin book, Here to Go: Planet R101, with writer Terry Wilson. GPO and PC released an album of Burroughs' tape experiments, Nothing Here Now but the Recordings, on their Industrial Records label and helped arrange the Final Academy events in 1982, one of which was staged at Manchester's Haçienda club and attended by Savoyards Michael Butterworth, John Coulthart and Martin Flitcroft.

La Squab

Finally, here's a couple of new Squab renderings from Baron Guidio to help usher in the new year.

La Squab

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