Jim Shepard inaugurated his insular experimentation back in the late '70s with Vertical Slit, a free-ranging, amorphously constructed band that laid out its lattices of scree around the leader's extraordinary guitar constructions. You can hear bits of MC5er Fred "Sonic" Smith, Sonny Sharrock and Can's Michael Karoli in Shepard's alternately piercing and massaging use of feedback, while his lyrics coat everything in sight with overlapping bile and black humor. An array of cassette releases and micro-pressed records — in editions ranging from 100 (Slit and Pre-Slit) to a whopping 300 (The Live EP).
Under A Blood Red Lava Lamp is a live album that captures Vertical Slit in their early period in a show from 1980. While the recording quality is not the best, you can definitely get a sense of the intensity and the quality of material from this band.