Friday, September 23, 2016

Daughters Of Albion - Daughters Of Albion (1968 us, wonderful folk sunny baroque psych with jazzy shades, 2008 issue)



Everybody seems to agree that the black and white front cover is confusing, giving a much darker/weird psych related impression, while this is a, still seriously meant, lighter, much more happy sounding or at least more colourful pop related song album which has all the reflections of what I will call the sunshine pop colours, with the tendency of going towards more serious ideas, concepts or arrangements. 

The sounds created in the songs of this duo (consisting of Greg Dempsey and Kathy Yesse -later known as Kathy Dalton-) with band, fitted, except for a certain Beatles flavour (including all the small string and brass arrangements (with even weird analogue synth sounds on “Still care about you” for instance), would also fit very nicely to some of the Dutch bands that became more popular in those days (including Earth & Fire, Shocking Blue amongst even more pop orientated examples with harmonies driven female vocalist), and might have been one of the reasons why this album was also released outside the US, in Holland, the land of feeling free in that era. 

The arrangements aren’t easily defined, because from the surface, lots of them sound slightly public teasing, light pop-rock with lots of breaks and swinging movements aka Beatles, in a light and almost mainstream approach, but at the same time there’s much more individualism involved, and even some weirdness, especially when adding sound collages, which on “Well Wired” and on “John Flip Lockup”, reveal even an avant-garde approach within this pop context.

 While most songs remain pop song oriented (staying within the single-sized 3 minute approach), with this limitation, they have been played with infinite detail so that this alone makes it already a much more interesting album, a slightly hidden quality that used musical interconnections, lots of change, but with a hanging together coherency as well, a production lead by Leon Russell. 

The already mentioned last track, “John Flip Lockup” is perhaps the most exceptional cooperative approach, an over 6 minute visionary collage, but in fact the album is a real treasure for compositional surprises. The vocals sound pop attractive. The female part has a few times overdubbed female vocals, as if predating Abba’s approach, or are combined with close harmonies, also have a slight folk-pop flavour; other songs are led by male vocals. 

It is a special, interesting album, also due to its arrangements that conceptualize all that is inside into a coherent minor masterpiece.
Tracks
1. I Love Her And She Loves Me (Greg Dempsey, Dave Luff) - 2:59
2. Still Care About You - 3:10
3. Yes, Our Love Is Growing - 2:55
4. Candle Song (Greg Dempsey, Dave Luff) - 3:00
5. Ladyfingers - 3:19
6. Sweet Susan Constantine - 2:34
7. Hat Off, Arms Out, Ronnie (Greg Dempsey, Dave Luff) - 2:34
8. Good To Have You - 3:16
9. Well Wired (Greg Dempsey, Dave Luff) - 3:09
10.Hay You, Wait Stay - 2:57
11.Story Of Sad (Greg Dempsey, Dave Luff) - 2:49
12.John Flip Lockup - 6:59
All songs by Greg Dempsey except where indicated

Musicians
*Greg Dempsey - Lead Vocals, Guitar
*Kathy Yesse - Lead Vocals, Percussion
*Jesse Ed Davis - Guitar
*Leon Russell - Keyboards
*Carl Radle - Bass
*Chuck Blackwell - Drums

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Thursday, September 22, 2016

Kangaroo - Kangaroo (1968 us, amazing psych folk rock, 2007 edition)



As on so many obscure long-players of the late '60s, there's a salad of styles on Kangaroo's sole, self-titled album, running the gamut from redneck country-rock ("Frog Giggin'," "Happy Man") and sunshine pop-spotted psychedelia ("Such a Long, Long Time") to strident folk-rock ("Daydream Stallion") and avowedly sub-Beatlesque sounds ("Happy Man," "Make Some Room in Your Life"). There are also insertions of backwards guitars, San Francisco-type acid rock riffing, soul vocal posturing, descendants-of-Mamas & the Papas male-female backup harmonies, and a monologue about killing frogs and having sex at the same time.

Still, there are good things about the record, particularly the vibrato folk-rock vocals of Barbara Keith. They're reminiscent to varying degrees of Melanie, Judy Collins, and Buffy Sainte-Marie, though her own personality comes through, as showcased to best effect on the record's highlight, the strident yet haunting folk-rock-psych outing "Daydream Stallion." Fans of Keith should be aware both that this record is not similar to the ones she would subsequently make during her long career, and that her contributions are usually confined to backup harmonies. But when she took the lead vocal -- as she did on "Daydream Stallion," the slightly less impressive "The Only Thing I Had," and her wordless scatting on the opening jazzy section of "I Never Tell Me Twice" -- Kangaroo showed some glimmers of becoming something special. 
by Richie Unterberger
Tracks
1. Such A Long, Long Time - 2:13
2. You're Trying To Be A Woman - 2:15
3. Daydream Stallion (Barbara Keith) - 3:53
4. Make Some Room In Your Life - 2:42
5. Frog Giggin' (N.D. Smart) - 3:15
6. You Can't Do This To Me - 3:45
7. If You Got Some Love In Mind - 2:40
8. I Never Tell Me Twice - 2:28
9. Tweed's Chicken Inn (N.D. Smart) - 3:10
10.Happy Man (Teddy Spelios) - 3:30
11.The Only Thing I Had - 3:30
12.Maybe Tomorrow - 2:10
All songs by John Hall except where stated.

The Kangaroo
*John Hall - Bass, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
*Barbara Keith - Vocals
*N.D. Smart II - Drums, Vocals
*Teddy Spelios - Guitar, Vocals

Related Act 
1973  Barbara Keith - Barbara Keith (Japan remaster)

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Thoughts And Words - Thoughts And Words (1969 uk, beautiful warm folk psych, 2005 Issue)



Bob Ponton and Martin Curtis met at primary school where they formed the first band and later played around the youth clubs in Gravesend ,until they met Ray Jenns and Dennis Jenns .The brothers had a rock n roll band Bob and Martin joined Ray and Dens band which later turned into the Pandas. On the bands first record release they changed the name to Pandamonium after the demise of Pandamonium they formed the duo Thoughts and Words.

In mid-’68, five years and three singles into their career as Pandamonium, Bob Ponton and Martin Curtis were fed up. Their history, covered comprehensively in No Presents For Me (RRCD106) saw them at the epicentre of London’s psychedelic folk scene and hanging out with the likes of Davy Graham and Sandy Denny and the other Fairport members.The duo, fed up with the way they had been treated and supported by Denny and producer Joe Boyd, decided to go it alone. 

They’d built up songs and confidence, so Ponton decided to contact his old work mate, Andrew Lauder who was in charge at Liberty. After hearing the material, Lauder placed the duo in the tender care of rising producer and head of A&R, Mike Batt. The duo’s delicate, wistful songs gave Batt an ideal opportunity to hone his talents as an arranger and producer, as well as the album’s pianist.

Thoughts and Words is a largely upbeat collection of melodic, pensive songs, so unlike the psychedelic rock vibe that had prevailed in their late ‘60s output. The duo decided to name the album after a track on the Byrd’s album Younger Than Yesterday, but were surprised to learn that they had been given the name too! The sound is warm and soft - and so is the music. A great folk album. Thoughts and Words also released a single on Marabo records in 1974 titled Its Allright Baby a Bob Ponton song. 
Tracks
1. Morning Sky - 3:34
2. And The Tears Fall Like Rain - 2:36
3. Friends - 2:14
4. Back In 1939 - 2:26
5. Today Has Come - 3:11
6. Give Me A Reason - 2:12
7. Go Out And Find The Sun - 2:15
8. Seven Years - 2:45
9. Father And Son - 2:45
10.Lifetime - 3:17
11.Annette - 2:30
12.Vision - 2:31
13.Charlie Gates - 2:58
All songs by Bob Ponton, Martin Curtis

Personnel
*Bob Ponton - Vocals, All Instruments except Piano and String Section
*Martin Curtis - Vocals, All Instruments except Piano and String Section
*Mike Batt - Piano

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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Bloomsbury People - Bloomsbury People (1970 us, exciting psych prog, 2012 extra tracks remaster)



The Bloomsbury People was an important band in the late 1960's psychedelic/progressive music movement, playing to over 500,000 people at the Atlanta Pop Festival alongside Jimi Hendrix and other 60's icons. Bloomsbury People songs Now, after 30 years, this cult classic is available on Compact Disc. The CD includes three bonus tracks - "Gingerbread Man", "Madeline" and "Saga of the Red Sea" - never previously released. 

This seminal album is a must for anyone's Snopek collection, and for fans of the best on progressive rock. Original released by MGM Records in June 1970.
Tracks
1. Birdsong - 3:36
2. Witch Helen - 2:36
3. Have You Seen Them Cry - 3:37
4. Lake Of Sand - 2:11
5. State Of Confusion (Jon Wyderka) - 3:32
6. Golden Lion - 3:02
7. Pioneer Saint Of Death - 3:38
8. The Resurrection - 2:30
9. Demian - 4:39
10.So It Seems - 2:35
11.Gingerbread Man - 6:29
12.Madeleine - 3:08
13.Have You Seen Them Cry - 3:30
All songs by Sigmund Snopek III excpet where indicated

The Bloomsbury People
*Jon Wyderka - Vocals, Percussion
*Sigmund Snopek III - Keyboards, Trombone, Vocals
*Ding Lorenz - Drums, Acoustic Percussion
*Paul Dujardin - Bass, Trombone, Vocals
*Greg Janick - Organ, Saxophones, Vocals
*Dennis Lanting - Electric, Acoustic Guitars, Vocals

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Monday, September 19, 2016

Panhandle - Panhandle (1972 uk, magnificent classic rock with soul and funky vibes, 2016 remaster)



In the late 60s and early 70s numerous collectible LPs were made by studio musicians, or band members moonlighting from their regular duties. Examples include Hungry Wolf, Green Bullfrog, Ugly Custard and Rumplestitlskin.

The one off album released under the Panhandle moniker fits into this category. Somewhat surprisingly, its producer was Rodger Bain, then riding high as the architect of Black Sabbath's influential sound (as well as overseeing discs by Budgie, Indian Summer, Wild Turkey, Freedom and others).

Presumably recorded during downtime in Decca's West Hampstead Studios, it featured vocalist Jon Gobin (formerly of pop act the Selofane), guitarists Chris Spedding and Martin Kershaw, keyboards from Dudley Moore, bass from Herbie Flowers, and drums from Barry Morgan, as well as percussion by Dennis Lopez, and backing vocals by PP Arnold, Liza Strike and Kay Garner.

Spedding, Flowers, Morgan and Strike had recently contributed to Elton John's Tumbleweed Connection album, perhaps explaining the inclusion of his Amoreena here. They also tackled material by the Rolling Stones (a rare cover of Bitch), Creedence Clearwater Revival (Up Around The Bend and a rare cover of Penthouse Pauper), Sly & the Family Stone, Randy Newman, and other contemporary hitmakers.  The sole original cut is the curiously titled From The Film Of The Same Name, penned by the project's musical director / arranger, the prolific Roland Shaw. 

Engineered by seasoned Decca hands Peter Rynston and David Grinsted, the album received next to-no publicity or attention upon release in early 1972. According to Hi-Fi News ‘n’ Record Review 'A star-studded studio band work their way through rock and soul favourites with a combination of high gloss and enthusiasm. 

Chris Spedding, Herbie Flowers, Barry Morgan, Martin Kershaw, Dennis Lopez, P. P. Arnold, Kay Garner and Liza Strike are among the names involved. Jon Gobin handles the lead vocals, and the keyboard man is, rather surprisingly, Dudley Moore. Enjoyable, but no more.'Perhaps predictably, sales were dismal, and it was swiftly forgotten about.
CD Liner-Notes
Tracks
1. Amoreena (Elton John, Bernie Taupin) - 4:25
2. Mama Told Me Not To Come (Randy Newman) - 2:14
3. Penthouse Pauper (John Fogerty) - 4:16
4. Dimples (John Lee Hooker) - 2:27
5. Bitch (Mick Jagger, Keith Richards) - 3:25
6. I Heard It Through The Grapevine (Barrett Strong, Norman Whitfield) - 3:01
7. Susie (Dale Hawkins, Eleanor Broadwater, Stanley Lewis) - 4:29
8. From The Film Of The Same Name (Roland Shaw) - 2:54
9. Up Around The Bend (John Fogerty) - 2:38
10.I Want To Take You Higher (Sylvester Stewart) - 5:28

Personnel
*Chris Spedding - Guitar
*Dudley Moore - Piano
*Barry Morgan - Drums
*Herbie Flowers - Bass
*Jon Gobin - Lead Vocals
*Martin Kershaw - Guitar
*Dennis Lopez - Percussion
*P.P. Arnold - Backing Vocals
*Liza Strike - Backing Vocals
*Kay Garner - Backing Vocals

Related Acts
1970  Hungry Wolf - Hungry Wolf 
1970  Chris Spedding - Backwood Progression (2014 remaster)  
1972  Chris Spedding - The Only Lick I Know
1975-77  Chris Spedding - Chris Spedding (audiophile 2013 issue)
1977  Chris Spedding - Hurt  

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Friday, September 16, 2016

Mom's Apple Pie - Mom's Apple Pie (1972 us, excellent brass prog jazz blues rock, 2015 remaster)



Chicago's enormous success with their horn-driven rock in the '70s was naturally followed by several other bands who tried to hit it big with the same sound and formula. But many of them would remain in complete obscurity, and the ten-piece Mom's Apple Pie were among them. Their self-titled debut had all the right moves: good tunes, massive brass-arrangements along with organ, guitar and overall solid musicianship. Still, the success they sought never came.

The record opens with a cover of Willie Dixon's well-known "I Just Wanna Make Love to You" that showcases the band's arrangements and musical skills very well. "Lay Your Money Down" has some spacey organ that is quite unusual to find in this genre, and also a nice jam where the bass has one of the main roles. My favourite here is probably "Good Days", a tasty ballad with lots of flute and gorgeous vocal-harmonies. And the beat and rhythm of the track is quite ballsy for being a ballad. 

Keyboardist Dave Mazzochi was obviously one of the main songwriters in the group, and also knew just how to use the right sounds on his organ. "People" varies between a quiet and mellow verse and over into a more powerful a rocking chorus, while "Dawn of a New Day" and "Happy Just to Be" are cheerful rockers very typical for this style of '70s brass rock.

The closer "Mr. Skin" is a song packed with so many catchy hooks that it really had deserved to be a hit for the band, and remains one of the very best from the album. If you're into bands like Lighthouse and the earlier mentioned Chicago, then "Mom's Apple Pie" will be just your thing. 
Tracks
1. I Just Wanna Make Love To You (Willie Dixon) - 5:30
2. Lay Your Money Down (Dave Mazzochi, Tony Gigliotti) - 5:49
3. Good Days (Bob Fiorino, Dave Mazzochi) - 4:39
4. People (Bob Fiorino, Dave Mazzochi, Roger Force) - 4:29
5. Dawn Of A New Day (Dave Mazzochi, Roger Force) - 3:52
6. Happy Just To Be (Dave Mazzochi, Tony Gigliotti, Hartzell) - 3:01.
7. Secret Of Life (Roger Force, Bob Fiorino) - 3:29.
8. Mr. Skin (Jay Ferguson) - 5:33

Mom's Apple Pie
*Joe Ahladis - Guitar
*Pat Aulizia - Drums
*Bob Fiorino - Vocals
*Roger Force - Saxophone, Flute
*Tony Gigliotti - Vocals
*Fred Marzulla - Trombone
*Dave Mazzochi - Keyboards, Vocals
*Bob Miller - Lead Guitar
*Bob Pinti - Trumpet, Vocals
*Greg Yochman - Bass

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Thursday, September 15, 2016

Mason Proffit - Bareback Rider (1973 us, remarkable country folk roots rock, 2006 edition)



Mason Proffit's second major-label album and fifth album overall was similar in construction to its predecessor, Rockfish Crossing. Once again, the Talbot brothers and their supporting players turned in a combination of effective originals that touched on subjects from romance to politics with some enthusiastically performed country covers, notably a version of "Setting the Woods on Fire" that sounded like a deliberate attempt to impersonate Jerry Lee Lewis and featured a furious kazoo solo. 

The political element came out in "Black September/Belfast," with its reflections on Northern Ireland and Vietnam. You'd have thought that music this impressive could get a hearing, but Mason Proffit appeared at a time when music fans were more polarized than musicians, not only by music but by politics and culture. Despite the band's evident affection for traditional country music, their left-wing political stance and status as hippie rock musicians meant they could never be accepted in Nashville. And their music was too overtly country for them to score a pop hit. 

Thus, they were doomed to appeal only on the country-rock-oriented Los Angeles club scene and to some music critics. Bare Back Rider did a little better than Rockfish Crossing had, even scraping into the charts for a couple of weeks, but that wasn't the level of success a major label expected, and Mason Proffit was forced to hang up its spurs.
by William Ruhlmann
Tracks
1. Lilly - 2:17
2. Cottonwood - 4:16
3. Setting The Woods On Fire (Ed Nelson, Fred Rose) - 2:52
4. Dance Hall Girl - 4:47
5. To Be A Friend - 4:10
6. Stoney River - 3:47
7. Black September/Belfast - 3:45
8. I Saw The Light (Hank Williams) - 2:55
9. Five Generations - 4:40
10.Sail Away - 3:10
All songs written by John Talbot, Terry Talbot except where noted

The Mason Proffit
*John Talbot - Guitar, Steel Guitar, Banjo, Dobro, Vocals
*Terry Talbot - Guitar, Jewsharp, Keyboards, Fiddle, Percussion, Vocals
*Tim Ayres - Bass
*Art Nash - Drums, Percussion
*Bruce "Creeper" Kurnow - Keyboards, Harmonica
*Kinky "The Stinger" Schnitzner - Electric Guitar
*Bill Cunningham - Fiddle, Mandolin, Twelve String Guitar, Acoustic Guitar
*Tom Radtke - Percussion

1969  Mason Proffit - Wanted (2006 issue)
1971  Mason Proffit - Last Night I Had The Strangest Dream (2006 issue)
1974  Mason Proffit - Come And Gone

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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Jade ‎– Faces Of Jade (1970 us, fabulous melodic folky psych rock, 2008 issue)



James Aumann was doing his usual tax-collecting work as Warren County Treasurer late last year when he received an email about a secret from his long-ago past.

It was from Darren Blase, co-owner of Northside’s Shake It Records store. He wanted to know if the county treasurer was the same James Aumann who once led an obscure and short-lived local rock group called Jade.

The band had issued one album in 1971, Faces of Jade, on a small Cincinnati label called General American Records.

Aumann had quit Miami University to pursue Jade at the time. When that failed, he went into banking – getting a degree in finance from American Institute of Banking and rising to become vice president of Warren County’s old Community National Bank. Fifteen years ago, he was hired to be the county’s chief deputy treasurer and he then moved up.

On Friday, Shake It will debut its vinyl reissue of Faces of Jade, with original album-cover art. It will be for sale at the store to launch Black Friday, the kick-off for the Christmas shopping season. There is a new 500-copy pressing (on green vinyl, with download code included). It will also be available via Shake It’s website, www.shakeitrecords.com, starting on Dec. 2.

Blase believes that Faces of Jade holds up well as an example of the way a regional American band was inspired by the sophisticated, boundary-breaking rock and pop of the Beatles. Its 10 songs are artistically ambitious. Aumann and the band used the studio to create songs with ambitiously ornate instrumental and vocal arrangements, innovative recording techniques, and substantial melodies. In short, it wasn’t just garage rock. Parts of songs like “Prelude Willow’s End” and “My Mary (More Than Ever)” fit well into the psychedelic-rock genre of the time; other passages are more folk-pop.

In Jade, Aumann played keyboards and was a songwriter and singer who worked on arrangements. Other members were guitarist/songwriter/singer Randy Morse, bassist/singer Nick Root, drummer Timothy Nixon and business/songwriting partner and co-producer David Smith. The band was active from roughly 1970-1973.
by Steven Rosen 
Tracks
1. Prelude Willow's End - 6:42
2. Blue Ways - 3:23
3. Well - 2:24
4. We (Got To Make It Thru) - 4:00
5. My Mary (More Than Ever) - 2:41
6. My Honey - 2:26
7. Rest Of My Life - 3:13
8. All Alone - 2:09
9. Flying Away - 2:23
10.Wait Till I Come Home - 3:53
All songs by Dave Smith, Jim Aumann, Randy Morse

The Jade
*Nick Root - Bass, Vocals
*Randy Morse - Guitar
*James Aumann - Keyboards, Vocals
*Tim Nixon - Percussion

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Monday, September 12, 2016

Claire Hamill - October (1972 uk, fascinating fusion of folk r 'n' b and jazz, 2008 remaster)



Claire Hamill was a direct contemporary and label-mate of the late, but increasingly mythical, Nick Drake. Her second solo outing, October, proved her the mistress of tender bedsitter missives that still can haunt the heart. Fans of confessional songwriting should value and explore this neglected selection of artistry and craft that has stood the test of many passing seasons.

Recorded by Cat Stevens maestro Paul Samwell Smith in the month of 1972 that lends its name to the proceedings, it retains echoes of Joni Mitchell and Linda Thompson. Hamill possessed a maturity that reached far beyond the eighteen years her life had encompassed by the time the record appeared. In its evocative shots of her by Lord Lichfield, she seems a wayward Alice, gazing from rain-streaked panes or kicking up a cloak of bronzed Autumn leaves.

A small pearl of wintry perfection, October holds songs that pull with gentle strength on the strings of the heart, since she possess a voice of tremendous assurance and clarity. By turns piano-led, guitar driven, or beautifully coated in strings, she extols a wistful longing that lingers like an evocation. 

Hamill went on to record two superlative albums for the Kinks Ray Davies's short-lived Konk Records before briefly joining Wishbone Ash. Her work throughout the '80s became more experimental and choral, though her recent outings hold more in common with the tone and texture of her Island years. One of the most alluring fantasy pairings would have been Claire Hamill and Nick Drake. Everything was almost there, the talent, a shared sensibility, mouthfuls of reflective and haunting songs, even the same record label. It wasn't to be; it seems they never even met.

The best dreams are the ones that hover just out of reach, beautiful but unsullied by the sad light of what we commonly know as the real world. 
by Robert Cochrane
Tracks
1. Island (Steve Smith) - 3:20
2. To The Stars - 2:02
3. Please Stay Tonight - 3:01
4. Wall To Wall Carpeting - 2:21
5. Speedbreaker - 3:10
6. I Don't Get Any Older (Mike Coles, Claire Hamill) - 2:30
7. Warrior Of The Water - 2:54
8. The Artist - 2:37
9. Baby What's Wrong (With You) (Jimmy Reed) - 4:29
10.Sidney Gorgeous - 1:54
11.Crying Under The Bedclothes - 3:36
12.Peaceful - 2:19
All songs by Claire Hamill except where noted

Musicians
*Claire Hamill - Guitar, Keyboards, Piano, Vocals
*Gerry Conway - Drums
*Pat Donaldson - Bass
*Chris Laurence - Bass
*Wayne Perkins - Guitar, Vocals
*Jean Roussel - Keyboards, Piano
*Steve Smith - Keyboards, Vocals
*Tim Smith - Guitar, Vocals
*Henry Spinetti - Conga, Percussion
*Alan White - Drums
*Nick Harrison - String Arrangements

1971  Claire Hamill - One House Left Standing (2008 remaster with extra tracks)

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Sunday, September 11, 2016

Claire Hamill - One House Left Standing (1971 uk, astonishing folk with a jazzy edge and pastoral arrangements, 2008 remaster with extra tracks)



The ferociously talented Claire Hamill charmed her way onto Island Records, although initially label head Chris Blackwell was a bit put off by her tender age. But the 16-year-old with the crystalline voice and powerful pen was determined, Blackwell relented and ended up co-producing her 1971 debut album alongside her manager John McCoy. The bulk of the ten-song set was composed by either Hamill herself or co-written with her then boyfriend Mike Coles. Invariably romantic themes predominated, so did songs about growing up, as did thoughtful, introspective numbers, with a pair showcasing the artist's youthful sense of fun. But how to market this ferocious talent? As a singer/songwriter? as a folkie? or as a soft-rocker? McCoy and Blackwell never did decide and brought in a group of top-notch musicians to create a set that encompassed all angles.

The cutesy "Baseball Blues" that opened the One House Left Standing set Hamill up as the British Melanie; oddly, though, it wasn't chosen as the single, instead Blackwell opted for the searching "When I Was a Child." The powerful "Alice in the Streets of Darlington" featured on the flipside, and is one of two bonus tracks included on the Esoteric reissue. Neither were particularly representative of the album, which leaned in a somewhat folkier direction. The comic book horror of "Flowers for Grandma" is presented as a medieval ballad, the affecting "The Man Who Cannot See Tomorrows Sunshine" is more pastoral, "Consummation" features a lovely Western tinge, while "Smile Your Blues Away" dances into a banjo-led, knees-up hoedown. But musically, the album's sole cover, Joni Mitchell's "Urge for Going," is the most astonishing, an epic seven-minute track that slides from folk into psychedelia and out into prog.

There are also more lavish numbers, lush with strings and classical piano. The entire set is carefully crafted, deftly arranged, and beautifully played, while Hamill shines throughout. The only complaint one can make is that she tries too much. Intent on perfectly hitting every note, concentrating on her emotive vibrato, working hard on her enunciation, Hamill never relaxes a muscle, giving the entire set a rather brittle and forced feel. The difference is crystal clear when you hear her electric performance on the reissue's other bonus track, "Meet Me on the Corner," where she let down her hair with Stealers Wheel. Now if only she could have brought that sense of excitement to the actual album. Notwithstanding, this is a phenomenal set beautifully showcasing one of Britain's most astonishing talents. 
by Jo-Ann Greene
Tracks
1. Baseball Blues (Claire Hamill) – 4:19
2. Man Who Cannot See Tomorrow's Sunshine – 2:40
3. Consummation – 2:16
4. River Song – 4:16
5. Where Are Your Smiles At – 2:21
6. When I Was A Child (Claire Hamill) – 2:12
7. Urge For Going (Joni Mitchell) – 6:47
8. Flowers For Grandma – 1:40
9. Phoenix – 2:40
10.Smile Your Blues Away (Claire Hamill) – 2:15
11.Alice In The Streets Of Darlington (Bonus Track) - 4:27
12.Meet Me On The Corner (Bonus Track) - 3:43
All songs written by Claire Hamill, Mike Coles, except where stated

Musicians
*Claire Hamill - Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
*Phil Bates - Double Bass
*Paul Buckmaster - Cello
*John Bundrick - Keyboards
*Jack Emblow - Accordion
*John Hawken - Keyboards
*Aubrey Johnson - Oboe
*Simon Kirke - Drums
*David Lindley - Guitar
*John Martyn - Guitar
*John Pignegny - Horn
*Terry Reid - Guitar, Vocals
*Ray Warleigh - Flute
*Tetsu Yamauchi - Bass

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