As Detroit continues its seemingly irreversible slide into the tar pits of economical despair, new traditionalists Tyvek have unashamedly taken the reins and harnessed the ambition to keep their slurred and manically refreshing noise pop bouncing around the skulls of everyone still breathing in the real, uncategorizible fumes of the original new wave. With an already impressive trail of essential releases left behind them, including last year's debut album and an infinitesimal stream of "tour-only" CDRs, the band seems to always be evolving, yet never straying far from the original cacophony that earned them a spot in the hallowed halls of modern punk's elite erratics.And as dynamically diverse as Tyvek's recordings have become, their live set also seems to shift dramatically with each new appearance, ranging from a monstrous five piece to the currently stripped-down three-piece that easily gets the job done without sacrificing any of the intensity or brazen brevity that's earned them their fanatical following. With relentless touring, razor-esque songwriting and the ability to adapt to their surroundings without resistance, it's no wonder why they're so adept at captivating the off-center sounds of bygone-era DIY scrapings and spinning it into gold, all without ever really showing any influence of the Detroit "sound" that's known the world over. This trait alone deserves massive respect and forges their creativity in a unique light, as pioneers and as individuals who set forth to create their own thing in their own time, and in essence, are clearly executing some of the most exciting sounds in underground music today.Tyvek's In The Red debut, Nothing Fits, is a scalding collection of amped-up and thrust-out songs that crank up the energy level far beyond their previous releases, and decimate the detractors into the abyss. It's Tyvek at their fiery, screaming best, and if this doesn't curl your eyebrows and your toes simultaneously with excitement, then you might need to settle for something musically akin to hospital food or take another laxative, because this blast of new recordings might just flush out your system to the point of personal emergency. http://www.myspace.com/tyvekmusic
Melvin Davis never scored the crossover hit that would have made him a star, but few artists on Detroit's soul music scene had a more impressive résumé than Davis, a singer, songwriter, drummer, and bandleader who worked with everyone from Smokey Robinson andDavid Ruffin to Wayne Kramer and Dennis Coffey. Davis was born on August 29, 1942, and as a child, his family moved back and forth between Detroit and Milledgeville, Georgia, where his grandparents had a farm. As a boy, he developed a passion for music, seeing Little Richard perform at a juke joint near the family farm and hearing Sam Cooke with the Soul Stirrers at a church potluck dinner. At the age of 17, Davis joined the Navy and in his spare time began teaching himself to play the piano and guitar and started writing songs. In 1961, he released his first record, "I Don't Want You" b/w "About Love," on the local Jack Pot label, and his next single, "Playboy" b/w "I Won't Be Your Fool," was issued by the fabled Fortune Records, home of such local legends as Andre Williams, Nolan Strong, and Nathaniel Mayer. While Davis had already established himself as a powerful vocalist and skilled pianist, he also took up the drums and landed a regular gig at the Ebony Club in Muskegon, Michigan with his band the Jaywalkers, which included a promising young singer named David Ruffin. The Jaywalkers played regularly all over Michigan and cut a session for Fortune, but it was never released, and Davis' next record, "Wedding Bells" b/w "It's No News," appeared on the short-lived Ke Ke label. Davis then formed an alliance withMike Hanks' D-Town Records, and cut "Find a Quiet Place (And Be Lonely)" for their Wheel City imprint in 1965; while the record barely made a ripple on its initial release, it later became a staple at Northern Soul weekenders in the United Kingdom. By this time, Davis was also attracting notice as a songwriter, and in addition to writing material for himself, his work was being recorded by noted Detroit acts such asJ.J. Barnes ("Chains of Love"), Johnnie Mae Matthews ("Lonely You'll Be"), Lonette McKee ("Stop, Don't Worry About It"), and Jackey Beavers ("I Need My Baby"), with producer Don Davis frequently turning to Melvin for material. In 1966, with the Jaywalkers long gone after Ruffin left to join a vocal group called the Distants (they enjoyed greater success under the name the Temptations), Davis formed a trio with guitarist Dennis Coffey and keyboard man Lyman Woodard. The trio played a long and successful standing engagement at Detroit's Frolic Show Bar and later at Maury Baker's Showplace Lounge. Coffey ended up producing some sessions for Davis that led to a deal with Mala Records, whereDavis enjoyed a regional hit with ""This Love Is Meant to Be" b/w "Save It (Never Too Late)." As soul and R&B took on a tougher, more psychedelic tinge as the '60s wore on, Coffey's guitar style evolved with the times, and Davis played drums on his first solo album, Hair and Thangs, while Woodard's keyboard work also became more experimental and Davis' drumming helped anchor his newly renamedLyman Woodard Organization. In 1970, Davis signed on as the drummer in Smokey Robinson's road band and spent two years touring with the legendary singer and songwriter, as well as playing on several studio sessions, including "Tears of a Clown." Meanwhile, former Motown producers and songwritersBrian Holland, Lamont Dozier, and Eddie Holland had founded Invictus Records and released a single created by their studio team that was issued under the name 8th Day. H-D-H needed a band that could tour behind the record, so Davis became 8th Day's lead singer (Woodard was on keyboards), and later he was the voice behind their biggest hit "You Got to Crawl Before You Walk." However, as 8th Day evolved into a proper, self-contained group, they found themselves at odds with Invictus, and Davis decided to strike out on his own, forming a label called Rock Mill Records and a soulful hard rock band called Radiation, with Davis and Dave Penny on double drums and guitarists Wayne Kramer (formerly of the MC5) and Mark Manko. Radiation gigged regularly in Detroit but failed to click in the recording studio, and as Rock Mill's releases faltered in the marketplace and Detroit club gigs became scarce, Davis got out of music full-time, taking his first day job at the age of 42. However, as "Find a Quiet Place (And Be Lonely)" took on a new life in the U.K. and collectors began discovering Davis' other rare sides, he started playing occasional shows in England and licensed his Rock Mill material to reissue labels in Japan and Europe, while Vampisoul Records collected some of his finest '60s material on the anthology Detroit Soul Ambassador.
Natural Child is a garage/punk/pop band from Nashville, TN on the Infinity Cat label.