Title: Dumb Records: 1977-1979
Label: Orion Read/Athena
"The Bay Area punk scene really started to energize in early 77, when bands like Crime, the Nuns, the Mutants, and the Avengers started drawing rabid fans to legendary venue Mabuhay Gardens. Novak was a Mills College grad student with a background in avant-garde composition—hed worked with Robert Moog and John Cage as an undergrad—and access to a 12-track recording studio. He started making his own version of garage-inspired punk rock. By the end of 77, hed formed a band, played Mabuhay Gardens five times, started his own label—Dumb Records, and released his first 7”, “RU21.” He did all the engineering and production himself, glued the 500 covers by hand, and went around on foot to San Francisco record stores trying to get people to listen.
Novak met the Nuns Alejandro Escovedo at Mabuhay when the Nuns opened up for the Ramones, and ended up recording a three-song demo for the band. Shortly after, Novak produced Crimes second single, “Frustration”/”Murder by Guitar.” Gathering momentum, Novak put out a second 7”, “Oh Farrah!,” later that year. He went on to put out two more Novak singles, and also—returning to his avant-garde roots—a more experimental project called the Survivors, two savage drone tracks that incorporate eerie vocal samples of cult leader Jim Jones. Into the early 80s Novak broadened the Dumb Records catalog, issuing releases by local bands BOB and Ixna.
One part glam, one part dumb is smart, one part riff rock n roll, Novaks music is raw, arty punk rock. The fourteen tracks on this LP preserve the legacy of the Novak project by collecting the four Novak 45s and the Survivors 45.
Co-released with Athena Records.
Includes free download including three bonus unreleased studio tracks from 79.
4-page insert features photos and an extensive interview with Novak.
One-time pressing of 500 copies."- Orion Read.