Friday, August 31, 2012

Fifty Foot Hose - Cauldron (1968 us, perfect dark experimental psychedelic rock, Big Beat bonus tracks edition)



This is a true forgotten classic. Out of the great San Francisco acid wave, bassist Louis “Cork” Marcheschi -- along with husband and wife, guitarist and Slick vocalist David and Nancy Blossom, bonus guitarist Larry Evans, and Kim Kimsey on drums -- produced but one album in 1967, then basically faded away into normalcy. At the time, critic Ralph J. Gleason said, “I don’t know if they’re immature or premature.” I believe history has proven them to be the latter. 

While the razor-bladed blues rock fuzz and love laden “I’m just trying to free my mind” lyricism may have been par for the course for that era, the Blossom’s jazz influences met with Marcheschi’s homemade Radiophonic synths and Theremins to create a sound tragically ahead of its time. Acid Mothers Temple makes a decent living these days doing basically the same thing, touring with a Roland synth, but, since Cork made his own, the aural electricity smothering Cauldron in space sounds is just too fantastically dirty and totally original.

Each Doctor Who warp and UFO multidimensional warble is a Technicolor snowflake caught in a notion where time is no longer relevant, totally unable to be absorbed by a mind without blowing it. These remarkable noises augment a solid base of haphazard prog-blues and Nancy’s dispassionate vocals to make an undeniably classic and deservedly legendary LP, easily on par with the greatest works from the Elephant 6 catalogue or anyone who played at the only good Woodstock. I can see why the ’60s generation may not have dug it, though. 

The synthetic opening “And After” sounds like a broken stylus making a feeble impression of a healthy needle as it digs deeper and deeper into the virgin vinyl. Many copies were probably returned on this notion, let alone the fact this is the next level shit today. When this album came out, it was like showing a Shatner-era Star Trek fan The Matrix. They couldn’t really form a full idea as to what they really had in front of them. You sure missed out, 1967.
by Alan Ranta


Tracks
1. And After  (Marcheschi) - 2:06
2. If Not This Time (Blossom) - 3:39
3. Opus 777 (Marcheschi) - 0:22
4. The Things That Concern You (Evans, Evans) - 3:30
5. Opus 11 (Marcheschi) - 0:26
6. Red The Sign Post (Blossom, Roswicky) - 2:58
7. For Paula (Marcheschi) - 0:30
8. Rose (Blossom) - 5:07
9. Fantasy (Blossom) - 10:14
10. God Bless The Child (Herzog, Holiday) - 2:36
11. Cauldron (Blossom, Kimsey, Marcheschi) - 4:55
12. If Not This Time (Demo) (Blossom) - 3:39
13. Red The Sign Post (Demo) (Blossom, Roswicky) - 2:17
14. Fly Free (Demo) (Blossom) - 2:41
15. Desire (Demo) (Evans) - 11:39
16.(The Ethix) Bad Trip (33 RPM) (Marcheschi) - 3:21
17.(The Ethix) Skins (Marcheschi) - 2:24
18. (The Ethix) Bad Trip (45 RPM) (Marcheschi) - 2:03

Fifty Foot Hose
* David Blossom - Guitar, Piano
* Nancy Blossom - Vocals
* Larry Evans - Guitar, Vocals
* Terry Hansley - Bass
* Kim Kimsey - Drums
* Cork Marcheschi - Electronics, Sound Effects
The Ethix. (Tracks 16 to 18 ) The line-up was possible 
* Cork Marcheschi - Bass
* Bob Noto - Guitar
* Bob Gibson - Vocals
* Gary Doos - Drums

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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Ray Owen's Moon - Moon (1971 uk, effective heavy space psych rock)




Taken off his first and only seff-titled solo album, released in 1971. Ray Owen was the original vocalist in British outfit Juicy Lucy, and he appeared on their first self titled album in 1969. He left the band, his replacement being Paul Williams, and formed his own band, with Dick Stubbs and Les Nicol on guitars, Ian McLean on drums and Sid Gardner on bass. 

Their first and only album, which is quite rare and collectible, was released on Polydor Records, and it featured a number of really good riff laden tracks, in addition to a stunning version of Hendrix's "Voodoo Child", which Owen would redo in the mid 90's when he reformed his own version of Juicy Lucy. His career after Ray Owen's Moon is much of a mystery, as no record can be found of any other bands he may have featured with afterwards. 

As was mentioned, he reformed Juicy Lucy in the mid nineties and released an album called "Here she comes again" on HTD Records, with three unknown, but very good, musicians. For the record, Paul Williams also reformed another version of Juicy Lucy in the mid to late nineties, under the name "Blue Thunder".


Tracks
1. Talk to Me - 5:30
2. Try My Love - 5:02
3. Hey Sweety - 2:36
4. Free Man - 3:01
5. Don't Matter - 6:10
6. Voodoo Child - 4:51
7. Ouiji - 4:59
8. Mississippi Woman - 5:32
9. 50 Years Older - 5:12
10.Outro - 0:48

Ray Owen's Moon
*Ray Owen - Vocals, Piano, Guitar
*Sid Gardner - Bass, Keyboards
*Les Nicol - Guitar
*Dick Stubbs - Guitar
*Ian Mclean - Drums

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Plastic Penny - Currency (1969 uk, spectacular psychedelic rock, Repertoire bonus tracks release)



They are too good a group to vanish without trace after one hit. On this, their first album since Brian Keith left, they show they are talented songwriters as well as good performers. Apart from a rather dreary seven and a half minute version of Macarthur Park they come through well on tracks like Currency, Turn To Me, Give Me Money and Sour Suite, which includes a well-executed drum solo.


Tracks
1. Your Way to Tell Me Go (P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 2:52
2. Hound Dog (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller) - 2:48
3. Currency (M. Graham, N. Olsson, P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 3:40
4. Caledonian Mission (J. Robertson) - 3:00
5. McArthur Park (J. Webb) - 7:35
6. Turn to Me (E. John, Bernie Taupin) - 2:46
7. Baby You're Not to Blame (P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 2:53
8. Give Me Money (P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 3:00
9. Sour Suite (M. Graham, N. Olsson, P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 8:12
10.She Does - 3:08
11.Celebrity Ball - 2:41

Plastic Penny
*Michael Graham - Guitar
*Tony Murray - Bass
*Nigel Olsson - Drums
*Paul Raymond - Organ, Piano

1968 Two Sides Of Penny

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Monday, August 27, 2012

The Mindbenders - With Woman In Mind (1966-68 uk, fine beat psychedelia, extra tracks german edition)



Remaining together following the departure of frontman Wayne Fontana, the Mindbenders got off to one of the most promising starts any band could enjoy, when their debut single "A Groovy Kind of Love" soared to number two in the U.K. and topped the chart in America. And had the group only succeeded in locating a decent follow-up, they might well have developed into one of the finest British bands of the late '60s.

Instead, a series of disastrous choices of 45s condemned them to the ranks of rank also-rans, and it is only later that the sheer quality of their other work -- material hitherto lost on two Mindbenders LPs -- had been re-evaluated sufficiently to let listeners state that here was one of the greatest of all Britain's post-beat bands. 

A Groovy Kind of Love album totally failed to capitalize on the success of its title track, floundering to a lowly number 92, while a second song by "Groovy" composers Carole Bayer and Toni Wine, "Ashes to Ashes," scarcely improved on that in the singles' listings. It made number 55, although Fontana did still try to capitalize on it, repressing the Groovy Kind of Love album with "Ashes to Ashes" replacing "Don't Cry No More." (Later in the year, "Ashes to Ashes" hit number 14 in Britain, but only after the vaguely Spector-ish "Can't Live With You (Can't Live Without You)" had struggled to break the Top 30.

The Mindbenders made their final American tour in July 1966, kicking off in Atlanta on Independence Day, in front of a capacity 25,000 crowd. It was a shame they were only the opening band. James Brown was the headliner and, while Eric Stewart remembered, "we went down quite well," a more memorable show came when the Mindbenders played the Fillmore West later in the tour. "The liquid light show was great and really worked with our act, which was a lot heavier than on our records."

Stewart himself had developed into a very strong songwriter in his own right, contributing one song ("My New Day and Age") to the newly emergent prog rock favorites Family, and coming up with another, "Yellow Brick Road," which has been described as "the best record Traffic never made." For singles, however, the Mindbenders continued looking outside for new material. 

It was not necessarily a bad decision; their taste, after all, remained impeccable. Their final release of 1966, "I Want Her, She Wants Me," for instance, was written by the Zombies' Rod Argent and was handed to the Mindbenders a full year before it reappeared on the Zombies' own Odyssey & Oracle album.

Fighting hard to keep abreast of the changing currents, the Mindbenders next embarked on their most audacious yet strangely prescient move yet, a full-blown concept album. No matter that, several months before Sgt. Pepper and even longer before SF Sorrow and Tommy, nobody had even heard of concept albums, the Mindbenders' With Woman in Mind remains a gem in that genre. And yet, despite the presence of both "I Want Her, She Wants Me" and "Ashes to Ashes," plus a startling new Graham Gouldman song, the lascivious "Schoolgirl" is an undiscovered gem as well. Unreleased in America, it did little anywhere else and disappeared as quickly as the accompanying single, yet another Bayer/Wine composition, "We'll Talk About It Tomorrow."

Faltering ratings and drooping self-confidence, of course, were not necessarily an insurmountable hurdle. The group was invited to contribute two songs to the soundtrack of Sidney Poitier's movie To Sir, With Love -- "number one hitmakers the Mindbenders" are seen performing live in the school gymnasium, airing "It's Getting Harder All of the Time" and "Off and Running," both sides of their next single. Unfortunately, not even major celluloid exposure could break the group's run of bad luck. Neither could an infusion of new blood, after drummer Ric Rothwell quit to be replaced by Paul Hancox. 

By the end of the year, the band was reduced to recording covers of current American hits, which could be rush released in Britain in the hope of beating out the original. Art had been reduced to a crapshoot and, even as the first of the Mindbenders' efforts, a version of the Boxtops' "The Letter." ground its way to number 42 in September 1967 (the competition, by the way, reached number five), it was clear that the end was in sight.

The Mindbenders made one final stab at reversing their fortunes, re-recording "Schoolgirl" and pulling out every psychedelic rock trick in the book. A BBC ban (that lasciviousness again), however, kept the single a good arm's length from either the radio or the charts and, when a reading of Robert Knight's "Blessed Are the Lonely" followed "Schoolgirl" into the dumper, in March 1968, Bob Lang quit (he would reappear as a member of soft rockers Racing Cars in the mid-'70s). He was replaced by Graham Gouldman, in which form the band cut one final single "Uncle Joe, the Ice Cream Man."

The Mindbenders broke up, calling it a day at the Liverpool Empire on November 20, 1968, the last night of a U.K. tour with the Who, Arthur Brown, and Joe Cocker. Stewart and Gouldman, however, would continue working together, first as partners in the newly launched Strawberry Studios, then as one half of 10cc. 
by Dave Thompson


You have to sort of pity the Mindbenders -- the group, which had seemed destined for success, had fared so poorly since "A Groovy Kind of Love" that their second LP, With Women in Mind, barely got heard, despite its being as strong as anything that the Kinks were putting out on LP in 1967. The album picks up where the group's first, self-titled album left off, comprised of generally bracing rock & roll with a soul edge and a sense of humor, as well as a solid layer of inventiveness.

Ric Rothwell's highly ornamented drumming holds everything together, giving Eric Stewart and Bob Lang room to add their elegant flourishes and, in Stewart's case, moments of impressive flash, as well. They turn in a convincing R&B-laced rendition of the Goffin/King-composed "Honey and Wine," which is highlighted by killer vocals and a nicely understated guitar break, while "Schoolgirl," which got them banned by the BBC (over its allegedly lascivious tale of teen pregnancy), is an astonishingly catchy number that ought to have had enough hooks to get heard over here.

And their cover of Donnie Elbert's "A Little Piece of Leather" is so beguiling with its jagged, angular, quasi-psychedelic guitar break around the catchy chorus that it's almost worth the price of the album by itself.
by Bruce Eder


Tracks
1. To Be Or Not To Be - 1:58
2. Honey And Wine - 2:55
3. Schoolgirl - 2:20
4. A Little Piece Of Leather - 3:01
5. Shotgun - 3:06
6.1 Want Her She Wants Me - 2:19
7. Mystery Train - 2:59
8. The Morning After - 2:13
9. Homework - 2:51
10. Airport People - 3:07
11. Cool Jerk - 3:11
12. Ashes To Ashes - 2:26
13. School Girl (Single Version) - 2:06
14. Coming Back - 2:51
15. Blessed Are The Lonely - 2:59
16. Yellow Brick Road - 3:00
17. Uncle Joe The Ice Cream Man - 2:21
18. The Man Who Loved Trees - 2:31
19. Don't Cry No More (Live) - 2:40
20. Land Of 1000 Dances (Live) - 1:43
21. In The Midnight Hour (Live) - 1:17
22. See See Rider Jenny Jenny (Live) - 1:34
23. A Groovy Kind Of Love (Live) - 1:57
Bonus tracks from 13-18
Tracks 19-23 from German Tv-Show

The Mindbenders
*Ric Rothwell - Drums
*Bob Lang - Bass
*Eric Stewart - Guitar

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The Shamrocks - The 60's Beat (1966 uk, smashing blues mod beat)



Great tough 60s R and B, the lone LP by this formation was recorded and released in Germany only.  The band was founded  1962 on the Isle Of Wight first with Ricky Shane or Roger Card on vocals, both had left till 1963. In 1964 the band went professional, even opened for the Rolling Stones. By end of 1964 they left their small Island to find luck in Germany. They played at well known 60s Clubs in Berlin and recorded the 1st LP in early 1965.  Together with a first 45 Shame Shame Shame the LP was released in march 1965. Now with a keyboarder in their lineup, they toured through Germanys  bigger halls, together with some other bands like The Mozarts (NL) and Die Hexer (Germany) promoted under The Beat Monster Show. It lasted the whole year and even got continued in 1966 in Hof /Saale The Freiheitshalle furniture got  nearly destroyed. 

In 1966 they opened for the Hollies at Cirkus Krone in Munich, afterwards they jammed together at the PN-Club. A new hard driven R&B  single : Midnight Train - Crossbow, produced by Drafi Deutscher reached  the shops in 1966, this time on the Hansa label (19186AT). In 1967 the band split. Their leader Gary Cowtan (now playing guitar) stayed in Berlin, did sessions for Marianne Rosenberg or Peter Maffay among many others. As a member of the group Wednesday 2LPs got released in late 70s. He opened his own studio in Berlin and produced and did lyrics for Marc Seaberg,  "Looking for Freedom" reached the top of the charts with an interpretation by baywatcher.


Tracks
1. Shame, Shame, Shame (W. J. Reed) - 2:12
2. Down Home Special (Mc Daniel) - 3:25
3. What's All This (Cowtan) - 1:53
4. Dusty Road (John Lee Hooker) - 2:11
5. Rocks In My Bed (Johnson, Vogian) - 5:22
6. Sticks And Stones (Turner, Bevry) - 2:10
7. Road Runner (McDaniel) - 2:36
8. Howling For My Baby (Burnett) -  1:46
9. Big Boss Man (W. J. Reed) - 2:28
10. Nursery Rhyme (Hurner) - 2:58
11.I' m Mad (Jacobs, Agoin) - 2:15
12. Walking The Boogie (John Lee Hooker) - 2:37
13. Smoke Stack Lightning (Burnett) - 4:25
14. Got My Mojo Working (Preston Foster) - 2:29
15. Shame Shame (Mono Single) (W. J. Reed) - 2:12
16. Down Home Special (Mono Single) (Mc Daniel) - 2:26
17. Crossbow (Mono Single) (Cowtan) - 2:28
18. Midnight Train (Mono Single) (Cowtan) - 2:48

The Shamrocks
*Gary „Gordon“ Cowtan - Bass, Vocals
*Dave Eaglen - Guitar, Vocals
*Bern Roberts - Lead Guitar, Vocals
*Pete Channing - Drums
*Barry Millership - Bass (1964-3/1965)
*Dave Allen - Keyboards (1965-1967)

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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Plastic Penny - Two Sides Of Penny (1968 uk, remarkable psychedelic rock, Repertoire extra tracks edition)



Plastic Penny originally came together in the summer of 1967 when ex Universals members vocalist Brian Keith, organist Paul Raymond and bassist Tony Murray decided to form a new band with guitarist Mick Grabham and drummer Nigel Olsson. The Universals had released two singles on producer Larry Page's Page One Records ("I Can't Find You" and "Green Veined Orchard") before disbanding and so it was to Mr. Page that the newly named Plastic Penny turned to form a contract. 

The band's debut single was "Everything I Am No Pleasure Without Pain" (POP 051). Released in December 1967 the A side was a cover of a song originally released by The Box Tops and Plastic Penny took it straight into the UK top ten, reaching Mo. 6 and spending ten weeks in the charts. However, the follow up single "Nobody Knows" (written by Bill Martin and Phil Coulter)/"Just Happy To Be With You" (POP 052) failed to chart and the various members began to indulge in other activities. 

Vocalist Brian Keith already had a lot of session experience and he left in mid 1968, later turning up in Congregation, Big Balls and The Great White Idiot and Screaming Lord Sutch amongst others. The remaining members soldiered on, with Raymond taking on vocal duties. In mid 1968 they released the album "Two Sides Of A Penny" (POL 005) and followed it with the single "Your Way To Tell Me To Go/Baby You're Not To Blame" (POP 079). November 1968 saw a cover of Leiber/Stoller's "Hound Dog/Currency" (POP 107) followed by "She Does/Genevieve" (POP 146) in mid 1969 by which time the group existed only in name as the various members decided to go their separate ways. 

Tony Murray joined The Troggs and also contributed bass to Elton John's "Empty Sky" album. Paul Raymond joined Chicken Shack for two years and then played with Savoy Brown between 1971-76. Heavy Metal band U.F.O. was his next step between 1977-79 and he was also a member of the Michael Schenker group. Mick Grabham formed Cochise with Rick Willis, released a solo LP "Mick The Ladd" in 1972, and was a member of Procol Harum between 1973-77. Since then he's been an in demand session guitarist working with the likes of Bandit, The Dukes, Yvonne Elliman, Dave Greenslade and Micky Jupp amongst others. Nigel Olsson's post Plastic Penny career reads like an A-Z of Rock! 

He provided the drums for Uriah Heep's debut LP "Very 'Eavy Very 'Umble" and then worked with Elton John on a permanent basis between 1969-74. He also released five solo albums ("Drum Orchestra", "Nigel Olsson", "Drummers Can Sing Too", "Changing Tides" and "Nigel") and has worked with the likes of Eric Carmen, Spencer Davis, Kiki Dee, Randy Edelman, Linda Ronstadt, and the Who to name but a few. History may remember Plastic Penny as 'one hit wonders' but there's no doubting the excellent musicians training ground it provided!
by Mark Brennan


Tracks
1. Everything I Am (D. Penn, S. Oldham) - 2:26
2. Wake Me Up (B. Keith, P. Raymond) - 3:09
3. Never My Love (D. Addrisi, D. Addrisi) - 2:23
4. Genevieve (P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 2:08
5. No Pleasure Without Pain My Love (B. Keith, P. Raymond) - 2:42
6. So Much Older Now (P. Raymond, T. Murray) - 2:36
7. Mrs. Grundy (B. Keith, P. Raymond) - 5:16
8. Take Me Back (B. Keith, P. Raymond) - 2:20
9. I Want You (John Group) - 3:25
10. It's A Good Thing (B. Keith, P. Raymond) - 2:47
11. Strawberry Fields Forever (J. Lennon, P. McCartney) - 4:27
12. Nobody Knows It (B. Martin, P. Coulter) - 2:31
13. Happy Just To Be With You (B. Keith, P. Raymond) - 2:57

Plastic Penny
*Michael Graham - Guitar
*Brian Keith  - Vocals
*Tony Murray - Bass
*Nigel Olsson - Drums
*Paul Raymond - Organ, Piano

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Friday, August 24, 2012

New York Dolls - In Too Much Too Soon (1974 us, 2nd classic album, exciting proto punk, glam rock, japan edition)




After the clatter of their first album failed to bring them a wide audience, the New York Dolls hired producer Shadow Morton to work on the follow-up, Too Much Too Soon. The differences are apparent right from the start of the ferocious opener, "Babylon." Not only are the guitars cleaner, but the mix is dominated by waves of studio sound effects and female backing vocals. 

Ironically, instead of making the Dolls sound safer, all the added frills emphasize their gleeful sleaziness and reckless sound. the Dolls sound on the verge of falling apart throughout the album, as Johnny Thunders and Syl Sylvain relentlessly trade buzz-saw riffs while David Johansen sings, shouts, and sashays on top of the racket. Band originals -- including the bluesy raver "It's Too Late," the noisy girl-group pop of "Puss N' Boots," and the Thunders showcase "Chatterbox" -- are rounded out by obscure R&B and rock & roll covers tailor-made for the group. Johansen vamps throughout Leiber & Stoller's "Bad Detective," Archie Bell's "(There's Gonna Be A) Showdown," the Cadets "Stranded in the Jungle," and Sonny Boy Williamson's "Don't Start Me Talkin'," yet it's with grit and affection -- he really means it, man! 

The whole record collapses with the scathing "Human Being," on which a bunch of cross-dressing misfits defiantly declare that it's OK that they want too many things, 'cause they're human beings, just like you and me. Three years later, the Sex Pistols failed to come up with anything as musically visceral and dangerous. Perhaps that's why the Dolls never found their audience in the early '70s: Not only were they punk rock before punk rock was cool, but they remained weirder and more idiosyncratic than any of the bands that followed. And they rocked harder, too. 
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine


Tracks
1. Babylon - 3:31
2. Stranded in the Jungle (James Johnson, Ernestine Smith, Al Curry) - 3:49
3. Who Are the Mystery Girls? - 3:07
4. (There's Gonna Be A) Showdown (Kenny Gamble, Leon Huff) - 3:37
5. It's Too Late - 4:35
6. Puss 'N' Boots (Johansen, Sylvain Sylvain) - 3:06
7. Chatterbox (Thunders) - 2:26
8. Bad Detective   (Kenny Lewis) - 3:37
9. Don't Start Me Talkin'   (Sonny Boy Williamson II) - 3:12
10.Human Being - 5:44
All songs written and composed by David Johansen and Johnny Thunders, except as indicated.

The New York Dolls
*David Johansen - Lead Vocals, Harmonica, Gong
*Arthur "Killer" Kane - Bass Guitar
*Jerry Nolan - Drums
*Sylvain Sylvain -Guitar, Piano, Bass, Vocals
*Johnny Thunders - Lead Guitar, Vocals, Lead Vocals On "Chatterbox"
Additional Personnel
*Peter Jordan - Bass
*Alex Spyropoulos - Piano

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Thursday, August 23, 2012

New York Dolls - New York Dolls (1973 us, powerful proto punk, glam rock, japan remaster)



There are hints of girl group pop and more than a hint of the Rolling Stones, but The New York Dolls doesn't really sound like anything that came before it. It's hard rock with a self-conscious wit, a celebration of camp and kitsch that retains a menacing, malevolent edge. The New York Dolls play as if they can barely keep the music from falling apart and David Johansen sings and screams like a man possessed. 

The New York Dolls is a noisy, reckless album that rocks and rolls with a vengeance. The Dolls rework old Chuck Berry and Stones riffs, playing them with a sloppy, violent glee. "Personality Crisis," "Looking for a Kiss," and "Trash" strut with confidence, while "Vietnamese Baby" and "Frankenstein" sound otherworldly, working the same frightening drone over and over again. The New York Dolls is the definitive proto-punk album, even more than anything the Stooges released. It plunders history while celebrating it, creating a sleazy urban mythology along the way. 
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine


Tracks      
1. Personality Crisis - 3:43    
2. Looking For A Kiss - 3:20    
3. Vietnamese Baby  (Johansen) - 3:39    
4. Lonely Planet Boy - 4:10    
5. Frankenstein (Orig.) ( Johansen, Sylvain) - 6:00    
6. Trash   (Johansen, Sylvain) -  3:09    
7. Bad Girl - 3:05    
8. Subway Train - 4:22    
9. Pills   (Bo Diddley) - 2:49    
10.Private World  (Johansen, Arthur Kane) - 3:40    
11.Jet Boy - 4:40  

The New York Dolls
*David Johansen - Vocals, Harmonica, Gong
*Arthur "Killer" Kane - Bass Guitar
*Jerry Nolan - Drums
*Sylvain Sylvain - Rhythm Guitar, Piano, Vocals
*Johnny Thunders - Lead Guitar, Vocals
Additional Musicians
*Todd Rundgren - Piano, Keyboards, Moog Synthesizer
*Buddy Bowser - Saxophone
*Alex Spyropoulos - Piano

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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Born Again - Pagan (1969-71 us, significant heavy psych with west coast traces)



From the ashes of the band "Red Mountain" rose Born Again. Originally from Marin County in Northern California the band traveled to Los Angeles to try to find fortune and fame. Local producer Roger Dollarhide took the boys under his wing and recorded tracks with them in late '69 and early '70 at Sun West Studios in Hollywood. Led by the tasteful guitar playing of Larry Otis and the soulful vocals of Bryce Sullivan, Born Again was a very versatile band that created a hybrid style all their own.

Whether it's a country tinged ballad ala KAK ("She's Gone") or an eerie guitar psych instrumental ("Laura's Waltzing" from the 1970 Film Soundtrack from "The Velvet Vampire") these boys were one tight unit that delivered the goods.


Some people will say there is just so much good music from the '60s you can reissue, although the small community of collectors just doesn't seem to care. And then, there are those gems that were recorded but never released at the time. 
by Adamus67

These are the most cutthroat projects for a record label: no previous market, no "rarity" cult status, nothing but the sole strength of the music to carry the album. Well, in this case Shadoks can say "mission accomplished." It's hard to say what would have happened of Born Again, had Pagan been released in 1971. 

What is easy to state, though, is that singer Brice Sullivan and guitarist Larry Otis made quite an efficient songwriting team. Their brand of blues-rock shows the influence of West Coast psychedelic rock (Iron Butterfly, specifically), but also the rootsier leanings of Savoy Brown. Otis was not a guitar hero, but he had a good sound, strong chops, and a twist in his playing that would have made him recognizable after two or three LPs. That said, the band's strongest asset was Sullivan's strong voice, a soaring blues tenor with a lot of soul. The album proper (the 11 tracks recorded in Los Angeles in 1969-1971 that were first released as an LP by Rockadelic in 2001) deserves to be heard, if only for "Sand Castle," "Radio X," and "Boiling Point," all very good songs. 

The 2005 Shadoks reissue on CD adds seven bonus tracks that are less interesting, although the three home demos from 1972 show that the Otis/Sullivan partnership would have had more to offer, given the chance. 
by Francois Couture

Tracks
1. Barnyard Blues - 4:22
2. Radio X (Brice Sullivan) - 4:39
3. No Good Reason - 4:00
4. Boiling Point (Brice Sullivan) - 3:11
5. Three Pipers (Dollarhide) - 1:59
6. Laurie Waltzing (Larry Otis) - 2:30
7. Sand Castle - 3:52
8. Good Blues - 2:30
9. She's Gone (Brice Sullivan) - 4:46
10. Comin' Back Strong (Brice Sullivan) - 5:20
11. Lie Me Down (Brice Sullivan) - 4:21
12. Velvet Vampire Radio Spot 1971 - 0:58
13. Laurie Waltzing (Larry Otis) - 3:08
14. Sand Castle (Alt. Mix)   - 4:07
15. Om Namah Shivaya (Larry Otis) - 6:09
16. Milk & Honey - 3:41
17. In That Day - 3:20
18. You Let Yourself In - 4:32
All songs by Larry Otis and Brice Sullivan except where noted.
Bonus tracks from 12-18.

Born Again
*Brice Sullivan - Vocals, Harmonica, Keyboards
*Larry Otis - Guitar
*Steve Avery - Guitar
*Stuart Ramsay - Bass
*Rod Moxie - Bass Guitar
*Lloyd Wick - Drums

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Day Blindness - Day Blindness (1969 us, terrific heavy acid psych)



Day Blindness came together in 1968 from a pair of competing bands at Jefferson High School in California's San Mateo county. One of the bands was a trio led by guitarist Gary Pihl -- from nearby Santa Clara High -- and included Felix Bria on keyboards and Dave Neuman on drums. This unit ran across one of its rivals, the Dimensions, at a county battle-of-the-bands competition at which both were short-listed. the Dimensions were made up of the Tabucci brothers, Mark and Charles, on saxophones; lead guitarist Ken Starr (younger brother of a Ventures member); Roy Garcia behind the drums; John Vernaza on rhythm guitar; and bass player Ramos Ramirez. So impressed were Pihl and Bria by Garcia's drumming abilities upon seeing the band play that they soon asked him to replace Neuman. The resulting trio officially became Day Blindness in the summer of 1968.

Over the next year, Day Blindness played gigs at many of the most notable venues throughout the Bay Area, even landing an opening slot for Sly & the Family Stone, both locally and on tour. By 1969, Mark Tabucci, who had also become a behind-the-scenes supporter of the band during the Dimensions swap, began to construct a small studio at 10 Claude Lane, funded by local backers and sponsors, in anticipation of the recording of an album. Once Studio 10 was ready, Day Blindness, with new skinsman Dave Mitchell in Garcia's old spot, set about working on that debut record. During the sessions, both Bob Dylan and Janis Joplin stopped by to submit a variety tips, including song titles and artwork. Soon thereafter, Day Blindness was released, though to little fanfare.

The band started to come apart almost immediately after the album's release. Producer and engineer Tom Press used some of his proceeds from the album to buy a Harley-Davidson motorcycle and disappear into the '70s. Tabucci became an automobile repairman for the Jefferson Airplane. Drummer Mitchell went on to produce and engineer for other acts, including Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Pihl later turned up in platinum-selling rock band Boston, then went on to play with Sammy Hagar in the 1990s. Day Blindness, not a big seller upon its release, took on a life of its own in collector's circles.
by Stanton Swihart


Tracks
1. Still Life Girl - 6:23
2. Jazz Song - 2:20
3. Middle Class Lament - 3:39
4. I Got No Money - 4:31
5. House and a Dog - 2:01
6. Live Deep - 2:48
7. Young Girl Blues - 4:22
8. Holy Land - 12:22

Day Blindness
*Felix Brian - Bass, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
*David Mitchell - Drums, Vocals
*Gary Pihl - Guitar, Vocals

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Sunday, August 12, 2012

Blonde on Blonde – Contrasts (1969 uk, bright psych with fuzz guitar and progressive drops, 2010 Esoteric bonus tracks issue)



A popular support act for some of the biggest names in the underground music scene of the late 1960s, Blonde on Blonde were no shrinking violets when it came to holding their own beneath the staccato glare of the polychromatic liquid lights.

Signed to Pye Records, they released their debut Contrasts in 1969 – a collection of psychedelic proto-prog songs, with a couple of souped up cover versions thrown in for good measure.In doing so, they perfected a blend of guitars, sitars, abstract percussion, flute and the ever-faithful keyboard contingent.

‘Ride with Captain Max’ is a powerful start to Contrasts with breakneck guitars and a rhythm section playing as though the devil’s at its heels; giving way to mellow lyrical passages of acid-infused ponderings on “flying high”. This is quickly followed by the flute and sitar-charged, kaleidoscopic playground that is ‘Spinning Wheel’, a lysergic single malt distilled into a bottle of less than three minutes. And that’s just for starters.

Want more? Then the third track is a bracing version of the Incredible String Band’s ‘No Sleep Blues’. Yes, you read that right, the dreaded ISB. It seems that if you remove their tuneless whine and slapdash playing from the equation, there’s a half-decent song just screaming to be set free. But this is neither the time nor place for Incredible String Band bashing, there’s plenty of that elsewhere on HFoS. Blonde on Blonde’s rendering is hearty stuff and one of the highlights of Contrasts.

There’s also a cover version of The Beatles’ hymn of loneliness, ‘Eleanor Rigby’, on hand, substituting the orchestral accompaniment of the original for a stirring horn section. The Elizabethan-style olde-worlde psych of ‘Island on an Island’ is another notable example of the many pleasures that Contrasts has to offer.

Blonde on Blonde would jump ship to the Ember label and released two more albums of a more progressive nature, but it’s their debut that offers the most memorable moments and as such is a fine addition to the psych/proto-prog stylings that were doing the rounds as the 60s conceded defeat to the 70s.

Oh, and did I mention that the band took their name from the 1966 album of the same name by Bob Dylan? No? Ah well.
by Nick James, Head Full Of Snow
Tracks
1. Ride With Captain Max (Ralph Denyer, Les Hicks, Richard Hopkins, Gareth Johnson) - 5:23
2. Spinning Wheel (Gareth Johnson) - 2:48
3. No Sleep Blues (Robin Williamson) - 3:23
4. Goodbye (John Godfrey, Barry Murray) - 2:13
5. I Need My Friend (Ralph Denyer) - 3:14
6. Mother Earth (Gareth Johnson) - 5:04
7. Eleanor Rigby (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 3:19
8. Conversationally Making the Grade (Ralph Denyer) - 4:15
9. Regency (Richard Hopkins, Gareth Johnson) - 1:58
10.Island On an Island (Gareth Johnson) - 3:03
11.Don't Be Too Long (Ralph Denyer) - 2:38
12.Jeanette Isabella (Ralph Denyer) - 3:56
13.All Day, All Night (Simon Lawrence) - 3:36
14.Country Life (John Godfrey, Barry Murray) - 3:37

Blonde On Blonde
*Gareth Johnson - Lead Guitar, Sitar, Lute, Electronic Effects
*Ralph Denyer - Vocals, Guitar
*Richard Hopkins  - Bass, Keyboards
*Les Hicks - Drums, Percussion

1970  Rebirth
1971  Reflections On A Life

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Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Who - Sell Out (1967 uk, superb album, double disc japan SHM expanded edition)


The Who Sell Out was originally released as Track 612 002 (mono), 613002 (stereo) on December 15th, 1967. It reached #13 in the U.K. Released in the U.S. as Decca DL 4950 (mono), DL 74950 (stereo), it reached #48.

[The concept for The Who Sell Out came from Pete and Who manager Chris Stamp. Stamp tried to interest advertisers in paying for the adverts inserted by The Who on the record but, with only 50,000 copies of the album expected to be printed, none of the companies would buy. The U.S. LP hit the Billboard charts on January 6th. It was undoubtedly released prior to that date, maybe as early as the last week of December 1967.

The stereo mix was completed at De Lane Lea Studios, London, on October 30. The mono master was completed at the same studio November 2nd. The mono "Our Love Was" track has a different guitar part from the stereo and features a "flanging" effect throughout. "Odorono" lost its guitar part, "Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand," "Tattoo" and "Relax" have slightly different mixes and the bass was more prominent throughout. This mix was released on SHM-CD in Japan in 2009.

The Who Sell Out is the third album by the English rock band The Who, released in 1967. It is a concept album, formatted as a collection of unrelated songs interspersed with faux commercials and public service announcements. The album purports to be a broadcast by pirate radio station Radio London (Radio London being a famed "pirate" radio station of the era - so called because it literally transmitted from a ship floating in international waters to get around broadcasting restrictions!).

Part of the intended irony of the title was that The Who were actually making commercials during that period of their career, some of which are included as bonus tracks on the remastered CD. The album's release was reportedly followed by a bevy of lawsuits due to the mention of real-world commercial interests in the faux commercials and on the album covers, and by the makers of the real jingles (Radio London jingles), who claimed The Who used them without permission. (The jingles were produced by PAMS Productions of Dallas, Texas, which created thousands of station ID jingles in the 1960s and 1970s.) In 2003, the album was ranked number 113 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
by Adamus67
Tracks
Disc 1
1. Armenia City In The Sky (John Keen) - 3:51
2. Heinz Baked Beans (John Entwistle) - 1:00
3. Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand - 2:34
4. Odorono - 2:35
5. Tattoo - 2:54
6. Our Love Was - 3:25
7. I Can See For Miles - 4:05 
8. I Cant Reach You - 3:31
9. Medac - 0:57
10. Relax - 2:38
11. Silas Stingy - 3:04
12. Sunrise - 3:03
13. Real (1 & 2) - 5:39 
14. Real Naive - 0:59
15. Someone's Coming (John Entwistle) - 2:36
16. Early Morning Cold Taxi (Roger Daltrey, Dave Langston) - 2:59 
17. Jaguar - 2:58
18. Coke After Coke - 1:05
19. Glittering Girl - 3:00
20. Summertime Blues  (Eddie Cochran, Jerry Capehart) - 2:35
21. John Mason Cars (Entwistle, Moon) - 0:39
22. Girls Eyes (Moon) - 2:52
23. Sodding About (Entwistle, Moon, Townshend) - 2:47
24. Premier Drums (Full Version) - 0:42
25. Odorono (Final Chorus) - 0:24
26. Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand (US Mirasound Version) - 3:22
27. Things Go Better With Coke - 0:30
28. In The Hall Of The Mountain King (Grieg, arranged by the Who) - 4:23
29. Top Gear - 0:50
30. Real (1 & 2) (Remake Version) - 6:37
Disc 2
1. Armenia City In The Sky (John Keen) - 3:47
2. Heinz Baked Beans (John Entwistle) - 0:58
3. Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand - 2:34
4. Odorono - 2:30
5. Tattoo - 2:48
6. Our Love Was - 3:23
7. I Can See For Miles - 4:02
8. I Cant Reach You - 3:27
9. Medac - 0:56
10. Relax - 2:36
11. Silas Stingy - 2:58
12. Sunrise - 3:00
13. Real (1 & 2) - 5:48
14. Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand (US Single Version) - 3:16
15. Someones Coming (UK Single Mix) - 2:31
16. Relax (Early Demo Stereo) - 3:21
17. Jaguar (Original Mono Mix) - 2:51
18. Glittering Girl (Unreleased Version) - 3:17
19. Tattoo (Early Mono Mix) - 2:46
20. Our Love Was (Take 12 Unused Mono Mix) - 3:16
21. Rotosound Strings (With Final Note Stereo) - 0:12
22. I Can See For Miles (Early Mono Mix) - 4:00
23. Real (Early Mono Mix) - 10:49
All songs by Pete Townshend excpet where noted.

The Who
*Roger Daltrey - Lead,  Backing Vocals, Percussion
*John Entwistle - Bass Guitar, Backing, Lead Vocals, Horns
*Pete Townshend - Guitar, Backing, Lead Vocals, Keyboards, Pennywhistle, Banjo
*Keith Moon - Drums, Backing Vocals, Percussion, Lead Vocals On "Jaguar" And "Girl's Eyes"
Additional Musicians
*Al Kooper - Keyboards, Organ
*John Keen - Lead Vocals (Shared With Daltrey) On "Armenia City In The Sky"

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Lynyrd Skynyrd - Nuthin' Fancy (1975 us, classic 3rd album, japan extra tracks issue)



With three full-time electric guitarists, a piano player and a fireplug of a lead singer who looks like Robert Blake's Baretta in a hippie disguise, Georgia's Lynyrd Skynyrd presents an unusually broad front line. And the band's live grand finale ("Our tribute to Du-ane"), the relentlessly ascending "Free Bird," is rock & roll at its most classically enveloping — a must see. On record, Skynyrd, with the aid of producer Al Kooper, approximates its hot live sound by limiting overdubbed extras (with three guitars and a keyboard, overdubbed parts are hardly necessary) and — partly through extensive room miking — by enclosing the band in a natural ambience.

Nuthin' Fancy maintains the feel, sonically and stylistically, of the first two albums but much of it seems stiff next to its direct predecessor, the tough but neighborly Second Helping. Singer Ronnie Van Zant's lyrics, so lucid and sly on the last album (especially in "Workin' for MCA" and "Sweet Home Alabama") are now sometimes hackneyed ("Railroad Song") or heavy-handed ("Saturday Night Special"). And the playing on a good half of the album sounds studiedly awkward compared to live renditions of the same songs. In particular, new drummer Artimus Pyle comes across much stronger onstage than on the record.

But there are some specific grabbers to make up for the problem areas. "On the Hunt," dominated by Gary Rossington's whip-snap guitar work, crackles with the dark eroticism of Free (Kooper cites that band as a favorite of Skynyrd's) and is as good as anything the group has put on record; "Cheatin' Woman" works, if not as a serious angry song, at least as an accurate Gregg Allman sendup, with Van Zant doing the vocal slurs and Kooper supplying the organ line; Rossington and Ed King give the second half of "Saturday Night Special" an exciting power assist; and "Am I Losin'" features Van Zant's most personal writing and singing (Van Zant's lyric writing may be erratic but his vocals are always on target).
by Bud Scoppa, “Rolling Stone” June 19, 1975
Tracks
1. Saturday Night Special (E. King, R. Van Zant) - 5:08
2. Cheatin' Woman (R. Van Zant, G. Rossington, A. Kooper) - 4:38
3. Railroad Song (E. King, R. Van Zant) - 4:14
4. I'm A Country Boy (A. Collins, R. Van Zant) - 4:24
5. On The Hunt (A. Collins, R. Van Zant) - 5:25
6. Am I Losin' (G. Rossington, R. Van Zant) - 4:32
7. Made In The Shade (R. Van Zant) - 4:40
8. Whiskey Rock-A-Roller (E. King, R. Van Zant, B. Powell) - 4:33
9. Railroad Song (Live) (E. King, R. Van Zant) - 5:27
10.On The Hunt (Live) (A. Collins, R. Van Zant) - 6:10

Lynyrd Skynyrd
*Ronnie Van Zant - Lead Vocals
*Allen Collins - Gibson Firebird Guitar
*Ed King - Fender Stratocaster And Gibson Sg Guitar
*Gary Rossington - Gibson Les Paul Guitar
*Billy Powell - Keyboards
*Leon Wilkeson - Bass Guitar
*Artimus Pyle - Drums, Percussion
Additional Musicians
*Barry Harwood - Dobro, Mandolin
*Jimmy Hall - Harmonica
*David Foster - Piano
*Bobbye Hall - Percussion

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Friday, August 10, 2012

Blonde On Blonde - Rebirth (1970 uk, a real heavy psych buzz of excitement, Repertoire edition)



Blonde on Blonde's second album, Rebirth, was a more focused body of music than their debut; it also constituted the recording debut of the group's second lineup: David Thomas (vocals, guitar, bass), Gareth Johnson (sitar, lead guitar, lute, electronic effects), Richard Hopkins (bass, keyboards), and Les Hicks (drums, percussion).

Whether they're doing the spacy, airy, psychedelic pop of "Castles in the Sky" or the folky "Time Is Passing," the group attack their instruments as though they're performing live, and the effect is riveting throughout, even when the melodic content flags slightly. Thomas' voice is powerful if a little over-dramatic at times, but when the band keeps things moving, there's enough richness of content to carry the album and then some; the band was probably really interesting in concert, too, based on the evidence here. And for once with a band like this, trying to encompass psychedelia, folk-rock, hard rock, and progressive rock between two covers, they don't over-reach on their magnum opus "Colour Questions," the record's 12-minute centerpiece.

The group's prog rock impulses are also expressed on the album's original closer, "You'll Never Know Me/Release," which is a tour de force for Richard Hopkins' keyboard playing; unlike most of the competition, Blonde on Blonde seems not to have gravitated to the Moog synthesizer or the Mellotron, and the difference is refreshing, Hopkins' grand piano and organ speaking volumes in their own resonant language.
by Bruce Eder


Tracks
1. Castles In The Sky (Eve King, Paul Smith) - 3:27
2. Broken Hours (David Thomas) - 3:40
3. Heart Without A Home (Gareth Johnson) - 5:27
4. Time Is Passing (Les Hicks, David Thomas) - 2:39
5. Circles (Gareth Johnson) - 7:23
6. November (David Thomas) - 3:06
7. Colour Questions (David Thomas) - 12:06
8. You'll Never Know Me (Gareth Johnson) - 4:54
9. Release (Richard John) - 2:46

Blonde On Blonde
*Gareth Johnson - Lead Guitar, Sitar, Lute, Electronic Effects
*David Thomas - Vocals, Guitar, Bass
*Richard Hopkins (Aka Richard John) - Bass, Keyboards
*Les Hicks - Drums, Percussion

1971  Reflections On A Life

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lynyrd Skynyrd - Second Helping (1974 us, classic 2nd album, 24karat Gold CD and japan expanded edition)



Lynyrd Skynyrd wrote the book on Southern rock with their first album, so it only made sense that they followed it for their second album, aptly titled Second Helping. Sticking with producer Al Kooper (who, after all, discovered them), the group turned out a record that replicated all the strengths of the original, but was a little tighter and a little more professional. 

It also revealed that the band, under the direction of songwriter Ronnie Van Zant, was developing a truly original voice. Of course, the band had already developed their own musical voice, but it was enhanced considerably by Van Zant's writing, which was at turns plainly poetic, surprisingly clever, and always revealing. 

Though Second Helping isn't as hard a rock record as Pronounced, it's the songs that make the record. "Sweet Home Alabama" became ubiquitous, yet it's rivaled by such terrific songs as the snide, punkish "Workin' for MCA," the Southern groove of "Don't Ask Me No Questions," the affecting "The Ballad of Curtis Loew," and "The Needle and the Spoon," a drug tale as affecting as their rival Neil Young's "Needle and the Damage Done," but much harder rocking. 

This is the part of Skynyrd that most people forget -- they were a great band, but they were indelible because that was married to great writing. And nowhere was that more evident than on Second Helping. 
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine


Tracks
1. Sweet Home Alabama (Ed King, Gary Rossington, Ronnie Van Zant) - 4:43
2. I Need You (King, Rossington, Van Zant) - 6:55
3. Don't Ask Me No Questions (Rossington, Van Zant) - 3:26
4. Workin' For Mca (King, Van Zant) - 4:49
5. The Ballad Of Curtis Loew (Allen Collins, Van Zant) - 4:51
6. Swamp Music (King, Van Zant) - 3:31
7. The Needle And The Spoon (Collins, Van Zant) - 3:53
8. Call Me The Breeze (J. J. Cale) - 5:09
9. Don't Ask Me No Questions (Single Version) (Rossington, Van Zant) - 3:31
10.Was I Right Or Wrong (Demo) (Rossington, Van Zant) - 5:33
11.Take Your Time (Demo) (Van Zant, King) - 7:29
Bonus tracks 9-11, appears only on the Japanese edition.


Lynyrd Skynyrd
*Ronnie Van Zant - Lead Vocals
*Gary Rossington - Rhythm,  Acoustic Guitar
*Allen Collins - Guitar
*Ed King - Guitar, Slide Guitar, Rhythm Guitar,  Bass
*Billy Powell - Keyboards, Piano On "Sweet Home Alabama"
*Leon Wilkeson - Bass
*Bob Burns - Drums Except "I Need You"
Additional Musicians
*Mike Porter - Drums On "I Need You"
*Clydie King, Sherlie Matthews - Background Vocals On "Sweet Home Alabama"
*Merry Clayton And Friends - Background Vocals On "Sweet Home Alabama"
*Bobby Keys, Trewor Lawrence ,  Steve Madiao - Horns
*Al Kooper - Backing Vocals, Piano

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Lynyrd Skynyrd - Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-Nerd (1973 us, classic debut album, Al Kooper production, bonus tracks remastered issue)



The Allman Brothers came first, but Lynyrd Skynyrd epitomized Southern rock. The Allmans were exceptionally gifted musicians, as much bluesmen as rockers. Skynyrd was nothing but rockers, and they were Southern rockers to the bone.

This didn't just mean that they were rednecks, but that they brought it all together -- the blues, country, garage rock, Southern poetry -- in a way that sounded more like the South than even The Allmans. And a large portion of that derives from their hard, lean edge, which was nowhere more apparent than on their debut album, Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-Nerd. Produced by Al Kooper, there are few records that sound this raw and uncompromising, especially records by debut bands.

Then again, few bands sound this confident and fully formed with their first record. Perhaps the record is stronger because it's only eight songs, so there isn't a wasted moment, but that doesn't discount the sheer strength of each song. Consider the opening juxtaposition of the rollicking "I Ain't the One" with the heartbreaking "Tuesday's Gone." Two songs couldn't be more opposed, yet Skynyrd sounds equally convincing on both. If that's all the record did, it would still be fondly regarded, but it wouldn't have been influential.

The genius of Skynyrd is that they un-self-consciously blended album-oriented hard rock, blues, country, and garage rock, turning it all into a distinctive sound that sounds familiar but thoroughly unique. On top of that, there's the highly individual voice of Ronnie Van Zant, a songwriter who isn't afraid to be nakedly sentimental, spin tales of the South, or to twist macho conventions with humor. And, lest we forget, while he does this, the band rocks like a motherf*cker. It's the birth of a great band that birthed an entire genre with this album.
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine


Tracks
1. I Ain't The One (Gary Rossington, Ronnie Van Zant) – 3:53
2. Tuesday's Gone (Allen Collins, Rossington, Van Zant) – 7:32
3. Gimme Three Steps (Collins, Van Zant) – 4:30
4. Simple Man (Rossington, Van Zant) – 5:57
5. Things Goin' On (Rossington, Van Zant) – 5:00
6. Mississippi Kid (Al Kooper, Van Zant, Bob Burns) – 3:56
7. Poison Whiskey (Ed King, Van Zant) – 3:13
8. Free Bird (Collins, Van Zant) – 9:18
9. Mr. Banker (Demo) (Rossington, Van Zant, King) – 5:23
10.Down South Jukin' (Demo) (Rossington, Van Zant) – 2:57
11.Tuesday's Gone (Demo) (Rossington, Collins, Van Zant) – 7:56
12.Gimme Three Steps (Demo) (Collins, Van Zant) – 5:20
13.Free Bird (Demo) (Collins, Van Zant) – 11:09

Lynyrd Skynyrd
*Ronnie Van Zant – Lead Vocals, Lyrics
*Gary Rossington – Lead Guitar , Rhythm Guitar, Slide Guitar
*Allen Collins – Lead, Rhythm Guitar
*Ed King – Bass, Lead Guitar On "Mississippi Kid”
*Billy Powell – Keyboards
*Bob Burns – Drums
*Leon Wilkeson – Bass Guitar
Additional Musicians
*Al Kooper – Bass, Mellotron, Back-Up Harmony, Mandolin, Bass Drum, Organ, Mellotron
*Robert Nix – Drums On "Tuesday's Gone"
*Bobbye Hall – Percussion On "Gimme Three Steps", "Things Goin' On"
*Steve Katz – Harmonica On "Mississippi Kid"

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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Who - My Generation (1965 uk, classic debut album, two disc japan SHM-CD remaster)



The Who's debut album "My Generation" features 48-tracks digitally remastered 2-disc SHM-CD album set - perhaps the definitive release of this landmark 1965 album. Includes the original 1965 mono mix (--1st time on CD!), B-sides, outtakes and demos from the LP sessions, plus Shel Talmy's 2002 stereo remix....An explosive debut, and the hardest mod pop recorded by anyone.

At the time of its release, it also had the most ferociously powerful guitars and drums yet captured on a rock record. Pete Townshend's exhilarating chord crunches and guitar distortions threaten to leap off the grooves on "My Generation" and "Out in the Street"; Keith Moon attacks the drums with a lightning, ruthless finesse throughout. Some "Maximum R&B" influence lingered in the two James Brown covers, but much of Townshend's original material fused Beatlesque hooks and power chords with anthemic mod lyrics, with "The Good's Gone", "Much Too Much", "La La La Lies", and especially "The Kids Are Alright" being highlights. "A Legal Matter" hinted at more ambitious lyrical concerns, and "The Ox" was instrumental mayhem that pushed the envelope of 1965 amplification with its guitar feedback and nonstop crashing drum rolls.

While the execution was sometimes crude, and the songwriting not as sophisticated as it would shortly become, the Who never surpassed the pure energy level of this record.
by Adamus67


Tracks
Disc 1 (Mono)
1.Out In The Street - 2:33
2.I Don't Mind (James Brown) - 2:37
3.The Good's Gone - 4:02
4.La-La-La Lies - 2:16
5.Much Too Much - 2:47
6.My Generation - 3:20
7.The Kids Are Alright - 3:07
8.Please, Please, Please (James Brown, John Terry) - 2:46
9.It's Not True - 2:33
10.I'm A Man (Ellis McDaniel) - 3:23
11.A Legal Matter - 2:50
12.The Ox (John Entwistle, Keith Moon, Nicky Hopkins, Pete Townshend) - 3:53
13.I Can't Explain - 2:07
14.Bald Headed Woman - 2:11
15.Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere (Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey) - 2:43
16.Daddy Rolling Stone (Otis Blackwell) - 2:49
17.Anytime You Want Me (Garnet Mimms, Jerry Ragovoy) - 2:37
18.Shout And Shimmy (James Brown) - 3:19
19.Circles - 3:14
20.Leaving Here (Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, Edward Holland Jr.) - 2:48
21.Lubie (Come Back Home) (Mark Lindsay, Paul Revere) - 3:36
22.(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave (Brian Holland-Lamont Dozier-Edward Holland Jr.) - 2:41
23.Motoring (Ivy Hunter, Phil Jones, William "Mickey" Stevenson) - 2:49
24.Circles (Alternate Mix) - 3:12
All songs written by  Pete Townshend except where noted

Disc 2 (Stereo)
1.Out In The Street - 2:34
2.I Don't Mind (Full Length Version) (James Brown) - 3:44
3.The Good's Gone (Full Length Version) - 4:30
4.La-La-La Lies - 2:18
5.Much Too Much - 2:45
6.My Generation - 3:21
7.The Kids Are Alright - 3:10
8.Please, Please, Please (James Brown, John Terry) - 2:46
9.It's Not True - 2:34
10.I'm A Man (Ellis McDaniel) - 3:23
11.A Legal Matter - 2:54
12.The Ox (John Entwistle, Keith Moon, Nicky Hopkins, Pete Townshend) - 3:58
 13.I Can't Explain - 2:04
14.Bald Headed Woman - 2:32
15.Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere (Alternate Version) (Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey) - 2:43
16.Daddy Rolling Stone (Otis Blackwell) - 2:56
17.Anytime You Want Me (Garnet Mimms, Jerry Ragovoy) - 2:38
18.Shout And Shimmy (James Brown) - 3:20
19.Circles - 3:13
20.Instant Party Mixture - 3:24
21.Leaving Here (Alternate Version)  (Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, Edward Holland Jr.) - 2:51 22.Lubie (Come Back Home)  (Mark Lindsay, Paul Revere) - 3:40
23.(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave (Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, Edward Holland Jr.) - 2:41 24.Motoring (Ivy Hunter, Phil Jones, William "Mickey" Stevenson) - 2:49
All songs written by  Pete Townshend except where noted

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Monday, August 6, 2012

Taste - On The Boards (1970 ireland, classic blues rock, second album, japan SHM-CD)



"On The Boards" the Taste's second LP was issued in 1970 and was a much more satisfying affair than their debut. In fact this record was a favorite of mine as a stoned teenager in the 70's, I've recently revisited "On The Boards" and it still sounds pretty damn good. The record opens with the Taste show stopper "What's Going On" a powerful electric blues raveup with some stinging Gallagher guitar work. "Railway and Gun" is a folkish blues not too far removed from early Thin Lizzy. "It Happened Before, It'll Happen Again" is a remarkable number that really stretches out, Rory plays some really thoughtful runs on guitar and even plays some useful Alto Sax in the mid section.

"If The Day Was Any Longer" is a pretty laid back song that's almost folk-rock, Rory plays some nice Mel Lyman style harp on this one. "Morning Sun" is a full out rocker again recalling fellow Irishmen Thin Lizzy.

Side two opens with another blistering raver called "Eat My Words" the group is really clicking on this one Richard McCracken's plays lead bass right in your face ala Andy Fraser, Rory plays some razor sharp bottleneck lines while John Wilson plays the Ginger Baker part on drums. The title track "On The Boards" is a very interesting one that uses space to great effect, Rory's guitar sounds very San Francisco-ish like he just got done jamming with Barry Melton.

"If I Don't Sing I'll Cry" is a blues rock stomper in the Savoy Brown mold and may be seen as a throwaway but nothing too bad. "See Here" is a beautiful solo acoustic song by Rory, kinda like Danny Kirwan's contributions to Fleetwood Mac's classic "Then Play On" album.

"On The Boards" finishes with "I'll Remember" which is the best song on the album, the arrangement is great, the band are totally in sync and they rock like there is no tomorrow. "On The Boards" is a tight well played album that is filled with great songs with no frills just the way Rory liked it.

Taste split after this album but Rory put together another trio very much in the same mold as Taste. He made many worthwhile records in the 70's, "Deuce" being my favorite. Before punk happened his records were the only thing that got me through the wasteland of the mid 1970's. I had a chance to meet him after a concert in the 70's and he was a true gentleman. A great man who will be sorely missed. 
by Dave Furgess

Tracks
1. What's Going On - 2:48
2. Railway and Gun - 3:38
3. It's Happened Before, It'll Happen Again - 6:33
4. If the Day Was Any Longer - 2:10
5. Morning Sun - 2:39
6. Eat My Words - 3:47
7. On the Boards - 6:02
8. If I Don't Sing I'll Cry - 2:40
9. See Here - 3:05
10. I'll Remember - 3:02
All compositions by Rory Gallagher

Taste
* Rory Gallagher - Guitars, Vocals, Saxophone, Harmonica
* Richard "Charlie" McCracken - Bass Guitar
* John Wilson - Drums

More from Taste
1971  Live Taste
1971  Live at Isle of Wight

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