Bat Chain Puller, a previously unreleased album by experimental rock artist Captain Beefheart (real name Don Van Vliet), will finally see the light of day on Jan. 15, 2012 — the same day the late singer, who died on Dec. 17, 2010 of multiple sclerosis, would have turned 71.
Dating back to 1976, Bat Chain Puller was shelved by Frank Zappa, who was producing the album, due to a financial dispute between him and manager Herb Cohen. The lost Beefheart album was intended as a follow-up to Van Vliet’s 1974 flop Bluejeans & Moonbeams. Some re-recordings of the album’s original songs later featured on subsequent Beefheart albums Shiny Beast (1978), Doc at the Radar Station (1980) and Ice Cream for Crow (1982).
The original Bat Chain Puller album is being released via Zappa Records and will comprise all 12 original tracks plus three bonus tracks. It was mixed by Denny Walley and John French, two alumni of Captain Beefheart’s Magic Band, who also provide commentary in the liner notes.