Doug Gillard has accumulated quite the resumé as the guitarist for Death of Samantha, Cobra Verde, Gem, Guided By Voices and many other artists. He's also the author of one of your favorite songs. (That would be GBV's "I Am a Tree.") Before any of those bands, the 19-year old Gillard formed Children's Crusade with Starvation Army's Fraser Sims. With Sims on vocals and Gillard playing all instruments, the pair recorded an 8-song cassette-only release in 1984. By the time of their second recording session the following year, the band has been fleshed out into a full lineup, but Gillard preferred to once again handle all the instruments himself. The session went unreleased at the time as Gillard joined Death of Samantha and the group faded into non-existence.
Five years later, Scat Records issued the cuts from the final Children's Crusade session as the inaugural release in their "Cleveland Archive Series." Upon listening to them, it's hard to imagine that songs as outstanding as these sat unreleased for years. The A-side, "Blue Venus Aflame," is a six-and-a-half minute epic, sounding something like rougher-edged Roxy Music. (Not a bad thing at all.) The two cuts on the flip are also remarkable: the anthemic straight ahead rock of "Your Time Is Through" and the weird Gang of Four/Captain Beefheart amalgam of "St. Jack's Bible." Though limited to only 1500 copies, the seven inch is still available from Scat and will only set you back 3 bucks.
Download Children's Crusade Scorpio Moon EP