Reason #329 Why The ’80’s Didn’t Suck: The Best Kisser In The World

max eider albumMax Eider.

Ever heard of the guy?

It’s a name you should know, the name of a fella that has talent up the yin-yang, was in one of the best bands you never heard in the 1980’s, and has slowly and quietly but surely been putting out quality music for almost 3 decades. He’s so criminally underrated he doesn’t even rate his own biography on Allmusic.com! A lazy and terrible oversight on their part.

Max Eider was an integral part of the Jazz Butcher’s Conspiracy and the Sikkorski’s From Hell. Max has been with the Butcher (Pat Fish) on and off since the early ‘80’s, and was a huge reason for the Jazz Butcher’s early ‘80’s appeal. His trademark guitar virtuosity, and a singing voice not dissimilar to Pat’s, lent a classy, and humorous, bent to some of the band’s best moments (the terrific Drink, for one example).

For some reason he parted ways with the Butcher (The over consumption of foreign delicacies and alcoholic beverages, perhaps? The endless touring schedule? Only he and Fish know for sure!) soon after the release of what I consider to be among the best Jazz Butcher albums, Distressed Gentlefolk.

Max EiderThen, in 1987, Max released this little gem of a record, a record I am ashamed to admit escaped my radar until fairly recently. Like his work in The Jazz Butcher Conspiracy, The Best Kisser In The World is filled to the brim with witty, classy, genuine left field pop music, peppered with just enough lounge jazz moments to give it that Cole Porter nightclub feel, such as the brilliant Bel Air Home and Raking Up Leaves. Perfect songs to listen to as the “cigarette smoke traces up through the air on a cool evening.”—Allmusic

My Other Life and most of the other rockier moments wouldn’t have sounded out of place on A Scandal In Bohemia, and the rest, while variations on the above, are first rate, top notch pop craftsmanship, and anyone who thinks the 1980’s was all about synthesizers and bad haircuts would do well to give this a spin or twenty.

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