It’s easy to forget it’s been 25 years Since Frank unleashed his hard rockin’ Catholics debut on the world and they carried on for some years making a right proper good din. getting a royal half-speed remaster it’s even louder than the original and the stripped-back band sounds sooo damn good. I’ll admit it’s been a while since I dived in on this album but when I do I still thoroughly enjoy it and this heavyweight version pays its rightful dues to the band and their output.

This is the first-ever re-issue of their self-titled album as a stand-alone vinyl release. The record has been mastered from the original tapes by Phil Kindrade at Air Studios, and this beautifully presented album is accompanied by a 5-page booklet and an Obi Strip.

Originally released in 1998, the backing group on this album performed on Frank Black’s previous album, ‘The Cult Of Ray‘ but the group name was first adopted on this release. Raw garage punk energy recorded live to two-track tape over the course of two days was initially intended as a series of demos. Black decided that they couldn’t be improved upon and released them as they were. This was the first album by a major artist to be commercially released on the Internet. Sounds bizarre now but it was.

All of the tracks are original Frank Black compositions except “Six-Sixty-Six”, which is a cover of a song by Larry Norman. Frank Black had long admired Norman, naming the first Pixies mini-album ‘Come On Pilgrim’, after a line in a Norman song. 

From the opening chords of ‘All My Ghosts’ the album rattles along and it’s not a stretch to find out these were live recordings intended to be demos but Frank didn’t want to mess with them or redo them in the studio so happy was he with the result of the sessions. the album feels like you’re sitting in on a session and the final cut of ‘Man Who Was Too Loud’ is my pick of the pops from this album. One of Franks’s best songs in my opinion but it is pushed close by the heavy riff-a-rama of ‘Solid Gold’ and Franks’s easy-going delivery on the lyrics is blissful.

It has been a joy these past few years seeing all the Black solo material getting dripped out with remasters and bonus material and never before on vinyl treats this is another that guitar rock fans should be all over like a rash. Bless you, Mr Black and all who plug in beside you.

Frank Black And The Catholics’ debut album go to

Author: Dom Daley

Frank Black And The Catholics  ‘Snake Oil’ and ‘Live At Melkweg (Expanded Edition)’ both released on vinyl formats for the first time on 20th January 2023
pre-order Here

On 20th January 2023 Demon Records release two Frank Black And The Catholics albums, which have never been previously available on these vinyl formats.  

Both ‘Snake Oil’ and  ‘Live At Melkweg (Expanded Edition)’ are lovingly issued on 140g vinyl: ‘Snake Oil’ has only been released digitally before, while ‘Live At Melkweg (Expanded Edition)’  will be available on 3 LPs featuring the 38 song show in its entirety, including 18 previously unreleased tracks.

Between 1998 and 2003, Frank Black and Co. released six albums under the ‘Frank Black And TheCatholics’ moniker. All recorded live and direct to two track tape, the music created with theCatholics is some of the most energised, raw, and essential of Frank Black’s career. ‘Snake Oil’ is acollection of cover versions recorded in the studio during this prolific period.

Highlights include thunderous takes of Bob Dylan’s ‘Changing Of The Guards’, Bruce Springsteen’s‘I’m Going Down’, and Angst’s ‘Some Things (I Can’t Get Used To)’.

This is the first physical release of ‘Snake Oil’, and has been newly remastered by Phil Kinrade at AIR Mastering, with new artwork featuring photographs by Steve Gullick.

Recorded on tour in support of 2001’s ‘Dog In The Sand’ album, ‘Live At Melkweg’ captures Frank Black And The Catholics at the peak of their powers, tearing through an expansive setlist which touches on all corners of Frank Black’s vast catalogue.

An essential release for Frank Black fans, ‘Live At Melkweg’ marks the first time a complete Catholics’ show has been officially released. This newly expanded edition features the 38 song show in its entirety 
Highlights include a haunting take on Pixies ‘Gouge Away’, Frank Black classic ‘Headache’, and selections from the Catholics’ repertoire including ‘I Will Run After You’ and ‘21 Reasons’ which would later be recorded for their acclaimed ‘Black Letter Days’ album.

Newly remastered by Thaddeus Moore at Liquid Mastering, ‘Live At Melkweg’  is housed in a deluxe triple gatefold sleeve with spot UV detailing.

To pre-order ‘Snake Oil’ and ‘Live At Melkweg (Expanded Edition)’ go to:



vinyl box set  

released 8th July 2022 

On 8th July Demon release Frank Black and The Catholics – The Complete Studio Albums box set. This superb box set includes 3 albums never before available on vinyl. Between 1998 and 2003, Frank Black and co. released six albums under the ‘Frank Black And The Catholics’ moniker. All recorded live and direct to two-track tape, the albums are some of the most energised, raw, and essential of Frank Black’s career.

For almost two decades, the Catholics’ studio albums have been out of print or unavailable on vinyl. Now, Demon Records is proud to present ‘The Complete Studio Albums’ boxset featuring all six original releases expertly remastered from the original studio tapes and pressed on heavyweight 180g clear vinyl. 

Includes all six studio albums –

‘Frank Black And The Catholics’ (1998), ‘Pistolero’ (1999), ‘Dog In The Sand’ (2001) [first time on vinyl], ‘Black Letter Days’ (2002) [2LP, first time on vinyl] ‘Devil’s Workshop’ (2002) [first time on vinyl], and ‘Show Me Your Tears’ (2003). 

Each album is pressed on 180g clear vinyl and housed in printed inner sleeves along with outer sleeves featuring spot gloss detailing. All 80 tracks have been newly remastered from the original studio tapes by Phil Kinrade at Alchemy Mastering at AIR.

The albums are housed together in a rigid outer sleeve and accompanied by a 32-page booklet featuring new liner notes by Catholics producer/engineer Ben Mumphrey plus unseen and rare photographs by Steve Gullick. 

Pre Order Here

Hot on the heels of the Edsel box set ‘Black Francis: 07 – 11’ comes the vinyl debuts of ‘The Golem’ and ‘Nonstoperotik’. Color vinyl, 2LP, Remastered, Gatefold is just about right for this series of Black Francis releases on wax for the first time.

‘The Golem’ is (for those who are unaware) a soundtrack album written and performed by Black Francis for the San Francisco International Film Festival screening of the 1920 silent horror film ‘The Golem: How He Came Into The World’. Of the concept, Francis said “Film fest wants a soundtrack to be performed at a screening… I don’t know how to do that exactly, but the idea that me and some buddies hang out at a studio and make a record I understand. So that’s what we do.” This vinyl reissue features the “rock songs” version of the album across two 140g grey vinyl and very nice it is too. I guess having a decade of distance between the release and the re-release is great as you can really put some love into the detail. I’ve not seen the film and have no inkling to do so but I might after hearing this record. from the first real track ‘Makanujo’ with its jazzy saxophone my brain is bouncing. ‘Bad News’ is like something the Eels produce. eighteen tracks splashed out over two slabs of Vinyl is great and don’t feel intimidated by the “Soundtrack Album” tag because as Francis fans will know all his albums are more like a journey anyway and some of the songs here are excellent and some of his finest to date off any album.

It’s a lot of music to get through but the experience is rewarding and the songs are great even out of context or sequence I raised an eyebrow and chuckled at ‘Little Star Theme’ when I first heard it on CD and still do on record with its dramatic pauses and flute work. I guess as a record Francis was able to throw the kitchen sink at this project and from Flutes to harpsichords and loud distorted crazy horse guitars, its all in here The acoustic strum of ‘Stars’ to the chaotic ‘You’re Gonna Pay’ its a great bunch of tunes and well worth picking up.

Buy Here

‘Nonstoperotik’ – First released in 2010, NonStopErotik is the final Frank Black Francis solo album. It was written in the back of a Cadillac whilst being driven around the “crispy brown hills of Cali”. It was then Recorded in Los Angeles, Brooklyn, and RAK Studios in London. producer and frequent collaborator Eric Drew Feldman was at the controls. Black said of the recordings “I had the title of the record and decided that was the theme, so I guess it’s supposed to be an erotic record. For me, I think it’s more of a weird record.” Here it is on wax for the first time on coloured vinyl.

Two months after The Golem, ‘NonStopErotik was done and dusted. The album was recorded in double quick time much like a lot of Francis’ records with cohort producer Eric Drew Feldman.

A lot of this record feels like it could have been Pixiefied and flows really well. tracks like ‘Corina’ are just rock n rollas plain and simple but with that lose feel. Again a record I perhaps overlooked when it came out and one I’ve not played in a few years but have throughly enjoyed revisiting it here. Sure I go back to the first three solo albums that were Frank Black but maybe these re releases have sprinkled a bit of magic in these here grooves and this one has benefitted from the straight rockin feel. ‘Six Legged Man’ is majestic lofi fuzzed up and to the point which is uncomplicated and spot on. Between two and three minutes long makes for a cool album I’m not sure its erotic but Frank was right calling it a little weird but not too weird except for maybe ‘Wild Son’ and the mental picture of ‘When I Go Down On You’ and the title track is piano heavy epic and dark all without being any of those things if you catch my drift? it never builds into a loud ending but maybe a touch jazzy and smouldering before ‘Cinema Star’ closes off a really good record maybe ut of step clocking in at almost six minutes sounding like a Sonic Youth song especially the first third but then veering off with the querky keys at the end.

Tip of the hat to Mr Francis / Black hes a great songwriter and releaser of records with a hefty and impressive back catalog that has now been rightly released on vinyl. Do yourself a favour and get involved and dive in. Quality!

Buy Here

Author: Dom Daley

Having been a big fan of The Pixies and always admired the songwriting skills of Frank Black it was always a joy to spin those epic first few solo records especially the opening trio of albums from ‘Self Titled’ through ‘Teenager Of The Year’ (being a particular favourite) and ‘Cult Of Ray’.  You could never tie Black to one sound or style and as he progressed through his solo output he certainly wasn’t afraid to experiment or throw a curveball the listener’s way.
From those late 80s flawless output through the early 90s and the demise of pressing vinyl a lot of Franks CD output got lost and it’s great to see all these years later some of those more experimental records get a new lease of life on the old black circle format. (even if it’s not strictly on black wax) but you know what I mean.
First up this month is a double album version of the ‘Frank Black Francis’ album spead as I said over two records as part of a bigger campaign which will eventually see throughout 2021 no less than twelve solo records hitting the vinyl format and many being on vinyl for the first time.
Frank Black Francis’ also includes solo acoustic demos from 1987 ahead of the first Pixies Studio session. Plus, a second LP of revisited classic Pixies songs.  And as Frank Black elucidates: “It had come to my attention that a forgotten old demo, recorded by my own hand on my own boom box in my old apartment, had resurfaced and would I be willing to release it?  As a time capsule it seemed fairly interesting, but as a full release it seemed lacking for the customers; and so while I was in London, waiting for something to happen in my lovesick life, Keith Moliné and Andy Diagram, David Thomas’ Two Pale Boys, took me into their atelier and let me cry into my lager while they helped me augment the demo from the crypt.  At some point, I think I took off into the night and encouraged them to do whatever the hell they wanted; I think I may have been a bit of a drag on the session.  Being the consummate professionals they are (they had played on the Catholic’s ‘SHOW ME YOUR TEARS’ record recently, so I know they were…very good eggs) Keith and Andy really did not have a problem with this lost man paradigm, and I think their deconstructive and self-referential art methods are absolutely lovely.  Their treatment of ‘PLANET OF SOUND’ remains one of my favourite versions.” 
Just like a lot of the recent PJ Harvey releases they were accompanied by a separate collection of Demo recordings this ‘Frank Black Francis‘ was songs that were a work in progress and how a prolific writer gets things done.  From the opening ‘Holiday Song’ its billy Bragg inspired workings where the bare songs are collected with spoken musings left in as Black communicates with the control room.  Probably something dedicated fans will really appreciate and pour over but maybe not for a first time fan of music looking to get into the music of Frank Black.  Closing with the same song but with added brass and percussion for real insight.  The more out there jazzy leanings of ‘Subbacultcha’ might confuse less avid fans. However ‘Monkeys Gone To Heaven’ is intriguing and interesting.
The Pixie tracks will have wider appeal for sure but not something casual fans will gravitate towards.  but a treat for hardcore Black fans.
2005’s ‘Honeycomb is an album of Nashville collaborations with legendary musicians including Steve Cropper, ex-Presley guitarist Reggie Young, Anton Fig, and Spooner Oldham.  Unusually for a Frank Black album, it has 3 cover songs, including “Sunday Sunny Mill Valley Groove Day” by Doug Sahm. In many ways, another experimental record from Black where he really does stretch his songwriting to the limit and with the three covers shows his eclectic taste for sure. I always had a soft spot for this record as it reminded me in places of one of my favourite bands Green On Red especially on songs like ‘I Burn Today’. It’s a gentle album where the songs are given space to really breathe and grow and having not played this record for several years it was a joy to revisit.  It won’t be so long between plays that I’ve promised myself.
Finally in this round-up of releases ‘Fast Man Raider Man’, released in 2006, is a double album backed by a team of all-star musicians: Al Kooper, Bob Babbitt, Levon Helm, Lyle Workman, Steve Cropper, Jim Keltner, Rick Gilbert, Simon Kirke, Ian McLagan, Chester Thompson, Dave Philips and Spooner Oldham. The album includes, ‘Johnny Barleycorn’, ‘In The Time Of My Ruin’ and ‘If Your Poison Gets You’. An interesting cover of ‘Dirty Old Town’. ‘Wanderlust’ still sounds fantastic and the horn honking of ‘Dog Sleep’ would fit rather nicely into a set from Urban Voodoo Machine.  ‘Fast Man’ has almost forthy musicians contributing to its rich tapestry from the jazzy smokey tones of ‘My Terrible Ways’ to some countrified rock and roll of ‘Fitzgerald’ via straight-up pop of ‘Fare Thee Well’ it’s Black doing what he does best and twist your melon with his take on Americana and Stax as opposed to his Rock with The Catholics which just about offers something for everyone all dusted down with his instantly recognisable tones of that voice with his abstract and broad stroke lyrics.
there are moments of sublime playing and sometimes as you’re switching off a pedal steel break reels you back in.  Whist these three are classic Black they are something of an acquired taste and not as accessible as those early records nor as Rock as his barroom noise he makes with the Catholics which will no doubt be reviewed with the next set of Frank Black Releases but until then these will be most welcome as vinyl fights back and Frank Black adds more weight (140gms) to his canon of work.
To purchase Frank Black Francis’ go – Here
To purchase ‘Honeycomb go – Here
To purchase ‘Fast Man Raider Man go – Here
Author: Dom Daley