Thursday, December 29, 2016

Misty Hush Revival - Your Heart Is Broken (1972 us, raw garage psych rock, 2012 edition)



Collectors of garage and psychedelica records are seemingly a very strange bunch. Once you get beyond Nuggets and various other compilations, good underground psych records tend to get really rare, especially considering that there were only a finite number of albums or singles released in the genre during its heyday. So that’s why when a really obscure find, such as Misty Hush Revival’s sole 1972 album Your Heart Is Broken, sees the light of day, and gets a pressing a bit less modest than its original 100 or so copies that were largely distributed to friends and family some 40 years ago, the words “lost classic” tend to get bandied around. I won’t mince words: Your Heart Is Broken is no long-lost classic. It’s simply a document by an amateur garage band out of tune with the times. 

By 1972, this type of music was getting heavier and blusier, and Misty Hush Revival’s music is so soft that it more or less makes the Lettermen look like Blue Öyster Cult in comparison. In essence, Misty Hush Revival could have been one of a million bands of the era that simply didn’t make it because they didn’t have very much to offer. In fact, they had only one really good song in their arsenal: the laconic, trumpet-filled ballad “Summer Means New Love”, which alas gets a somewhat unnecessary reprise here with all sorts of live band banter edited in. The remainder is just OK.

Even though there’s not much that is musically special about Your Heart Is Broken, it still is a fascinating period piece. You really get the sense by listening to this album that you’ve uncovered found footage of what it must have been like to be a struggling musician 40 years ago in the New York City area, thanks largely to those paradoxically unnecessary edited-in interstitial bits and a brief journalistic interview committed to tape that opens the album. That’s the real benefit of hearing this record. In fact, it might make you feel a little wistful and nostalgic, if not outright depressed, that this was the only artistic statement to be released by this band, and it was the only recording they did before moving on to seemingly more sensible careers. 

There’s a remarkable wholesomeness to the proceedings—some of it sounds a little bubblegum-ish – and that makes it a sort of “family photograph”, if you will, that’s stunning to listen to, as though you’ve been invited into someone’s private world for cookies and tea. So, yes, Your Heart Is Broken may not be the long-lost classic that obscurists may be scouring for, but it is still something worth listening to for those with a historical bent and who are alternative world fetishists. Nothing much may have come about for Misty Hush Revival – and, yes, the name is a bit ridiculous (what is a “misty hush” to begin with?) – but even though it is musically a very mixed-bag, it offers its own small rewards with subsequent listens, which may appeal those select few collectors running out of new-old garage rock or psychedelic records to discover.
by Zachary Houle

One of the most obscure U.S. private pressings from the late '60s/early '70s. For many years, The Misty Hush Revival name was only a rumor whispered in collector's circles, with only a handful of copies known of the original album around today. Like The Bachs or The Index, this is one of those hard-to-describe albums which seems to live in a world of its own. Despite the late 1972 release date, the music here sounds more late '60s than early '70s and the whole album has a cool, lost-in-time atmosphere. The group were in fact a club band from New Jersey, but surprisingly all the tracks are originals -- no cover versions -- and they range from fragile, dreamy pop-psych numbers to raw garage, fuzzed-out jams and teen-beat sounds.
Tracks
1. Singer To Singer (Dennie, John) - 0:44
2. Summer means new love (Ivancich, Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 4:23
3. Your Heart Is Broken (Single Version) (Cantoni, Dioguardi) - 2:52
4. Tell Me Baby (Single Version) (Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 3:15
5. Look my way (Matalas, Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 2:14
6. Gone away (Cantoni) - 3:10
7. Danny's Home Made Jam (Branen) - 5:18
8. Now I Need You (Cantoni, Dioguardi) - 4:48
9. Till I Get Back Home (Branen, Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 3:56
10.3 AM (Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 4:55
11.Summer Means New Love (Ivancich, Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 7:46
12.Tell Me Baby (Dioguardi, Cantoni) - 3:19
13.Don't Let The Sun Get You Crying (Unreleased) (Misty Hush Revival) - 2:59

The Misty Hush Revival
*Ronnie Contoni - Rhythm, Lead Guitar
*Chris Maralas - Drumms
*Andy Wan - Rhythm, Lead Guitar
*Dennie Dioguardi - Bass, Vocals

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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

CCS - Tap Turns On The Water The CCS Story (1970-74 uk, remarkable brass jazzy blues classic rock, 2013 double disc digipak remaster)



More frequently than ever, Esoteric has begun putting together anthology reissue packs that collect together full or partial albums, ranging from the cult band Cressida to the mercurial Beggar's Opera and right down to the downright obscure Burnin' Red Ivanhoe. In some cases, there is a lack of quality control, as Esoteric try to cram too much into one place, ruining the atmosphere of the standalone album as well as utterly wrecking the album artwork. However, this kind of treatment seems just right for the Collective Consciousness Society - ubiquitously abbreviated to CCS - the jazz-rock brainchild of Cambridge-bred composer John Cameron and fronted by the much older singer Alexis Korner, a pioneer of blues in Britain. 

The albums and singles tend to slide into each other, and the artwork is hardly very important here, meaning that a cheap one-buy-gets-you-everything package is ideal. The double disc set includes all three of the band's albums, namely CCS (1970), CCS 2 (1972) and The Best Band in the Land (1973) and rounds up all the non-album tracks, presenting the collection in chronological order. 

Now I shan't be spending too long on this group, as their output couldn't be very easily described as prog. Essentially a rock band with an extended brass section - including the talents of Henry Lowther among others - CCS specialised in playing jazz-rock covers of popular tunes such as Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love. Indeed, CCS helped to shed more light on the fledgling Led Zep when their version of this song was used as the introduction to BBC's Top of the Pops. I still find it rather ironic that TotP used this song when they would never have a band like Led Zep on in the first place, but I digress. The band also cover Jethro Tull's Living in the Past quite creatively, although draw blanks with their rather muddled attempt at another Led Zep song, namely Black Dog.

However, original tunes permeate the tracklist, and the most notable (and perhaps enjoyable) track of the set is the band's top single, Tap Turns on the Water, which originally made it to #5 in the UK singles chart. Replete with daft yet cheerful lyrics - "Tap turns on the water, see the waters flow / Acorn makes a forest, watch the forest grow!" - and played in a tremendously major key, it may be the feel-good song of 1971. 

Oddly, there's a lot of redundancy in the band's canon. For example, the main riff from Tap Turns on the Water can be heard yet again in CCS's cover of The Jackson 5's I Want You Back. Elsewhere, Living in the Past and Running Out of Sky (Sky Diver) seem too similar, especially in the rhythm department, to be treated as separate songs. Perhaps the biggest offender though is the aforementioned Whole Lotta Love, which unabashedly makes its way onto album 2 as part of a medley titled Whole Lotta Rock and Roll. In fact, this is another highlight of the set, with seamless segues into such classics as Lucille and Long Tall Sally.

CCS never appeared to be a particularly hard-working band, more a group of successful and well-established artists just playing some fun music. As a result, the proceedings are all very light, and errors are made along the way. This is the sort of music that would go down well at social gatherings when your pristine vinyl copy of Relayer might not be so deeply appreciated as background listening. You might even find yourself singing along! 
by Basil Francis
Tracks
Disc 1
1. Boom Boom (John Lee Hooker) - 3:36
2. (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction (Mick Jagger, Keith Richards) - 4:32
3. Waiting Song (Peter Thorup) - 4:35
4. Lookin' for Fun (Peter Thorup) - 4:01
5. Whole Lotta Love (John Bonham, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant) - 3:44
6. Living in the Past (Ian Anderson) - 3:47
7. Sunrise (Alexis Korner) - 5:15
8. Dos Cantos (John Cameron) - 8:09
9. Wade in the Water (Traditional) - 2:56
10.Walking (Chris Spedding, Stephen Parsons) - 3:12
11.Salome (John Cameron, Alexis Korner) - 3:05
12.Tap Turns On The Water (John Cameron, Alexis Korner) - 3:43
13.Save the World (John Cameron) - 4:02
14.Brother (Alexis Korner) - 3:26
15.Black Dog (Jimmy Page, Robert Plant) - 4:10
16.I Want You Back (The Corporation) - 3:44
17.Running Out of Sky (Sky Diver) (John Cameron) - 4:00
18.Whole Lotta Rock and Roll: School Day/Lucille/Long Tall Sally/Whole Lotta Love (Chuck Berry, Otis Blackwell, John Bonham, Jimmy Page, Richard Penniman, Robert Plant) - 6:14
Disc 2
1. Chaos/Chan't We Ever Get It Back (John Cameron, Alexis Korner) - 8:56
2. This Is My Life (Peter Thorup) - 3:53
3. Misunderstood (John Cameron, Alexis Korner) - 2:47
4. Maggie's Song (John Cameron, Alexis Korner) - 3:42
5. City (John Cameron) - 3:37
6. If I Never Sing Another Song (Alexis Korner) - 1:40
7. Mister, What You Can't Have I Can Get (John Cameron) - 4:10
8. Sixteen Tons (Merle Travis) - 2:58
9. The Band Played the Boogie (Don Reedman, Jeff Jarrett, John Cameron) - 3:50
10.Wild Witch Lady (Donovan Leitch) - 4:00
11.Lola (Ray Davies) - 3:35
12.Primitive Love (Mike Chapmann, Nicky Chinn) - 3:15
13.Hundred HIghways (John Cameron) - 3:50
14.Shakin' All Over (Johnny Kidd, Gus Robinson) - 3:09
15.Memphis (John Cameron) - 3:41
16.Sunshine of Your Love (Jack Bruce, Eric Clapton) - 3:40
17.Our Man in London (John Cameron) - 2:23
18.Cannibal Sheep (Alexis Korner) - 3:35
19.Hang It On Me (John Cameron) - 4:00
20.Hurricane Coming (Ronnie Scott) - 3:14
21.Dragster (John Cameron, Hayes) - 3:13

Personnel
*Harold Beckett - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Greg Bowen - Saxophone, Woodwind
*John Cameron - Piano
*Tony Carr - Drums
*Tony Coe - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Les Condon - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Bob Efford - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Tony Fisher - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Herbie Flowers - Bass
*Bill Geldard - Trumpet
*Spike Heatley - Bass
*Pete King - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Alexis Korner - Vocals
*Henry Lowther - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Don Lusher - Saxophone, Woodwind
*John Marshall - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Harold McNair - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Barry Morgan - Drums
*Danny Moss - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Alan Parker - Guitar
*Brian Perrin - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Ron Ross - Saxophone, Woodwind
*Peter Thorup - Vocals
*Kenny Wheeler - Saxophone, Woodwind

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Monday, December 26, 2016

Andwella - World's End (1970 n. ireland, incredible mosaic of psych, folk, blues and prog rock, 2006 japan remaster)



Formerly known as The Method, they signed with CBS in London for whom they recorded three albums and several singles. Their stunning debut LP "Love & Poetry" (1969) is regarded as a psychedelic classic by many collectors around the world. Their name was shortened to Andwella in 1970 and their further long players "World's End" (1970) and "People's People" (1971) were issued under this moniker.
by Clark Faville
Tracks
1. Hold On To Your Mind - 3:50
2. Lady Love - 4:16
3. Michael Fitzhenry - 3:32
4. I'm Just Happy To See You Get Her - 2:57
5. Just How Long - 3:18
6. World's End Part I (Bobby Scott) - 3:00
7. World's End Part II - 2:25
8. Back On The Road - 3:24
9. I Got A Woman - 2:56
10.Reason For Living - 3:10
11.Shadow Of The Night - 3:39
All compositions by David Lewis except where stated.

Andwella
*David Lewis - Guitar, Piano, Organ, Vocals, Flute
*Dave McDougall - Piano, Organ, Vocals
*Nigel Smith - Bass, Vocals
*Gordon Barton - Drums, Percussion
Additional Personnel
*John Hawkins - Orchestral Arrangements

1969  Andwellas Dream - Love And Poetry (2009 Sunbeam extra tracks edition)
1971  Andwella - People's People (japan remaster issue)

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Sunday, December 25, 2016

Heavy Jelly - Heavy Jelly (1970 uk, spectacular blues classic rock, 2014 remaster)



In 1970 Jackie Lomax joined Heavy Jelly following on from his spell in the late 60’s as the first ever signing as a solo artist with Apple Records and being championed by The BEATLES. Heavy Jelly consisted of former AYNSLEY DUNBAR members and the drummer from The ANIMALS. The band recorded in 1970 their debut album. Heavy Jelly initially were a fictitious group that somehow became a real band.

Because of contractual problems with Apple the album has never before been officially released until now. This long lost 1970 album has attained legendary status and has appeared in bootleg form over the years. Following Jackie’s untimely death in autumn 2013 his family has resolved all contractual issues with Apple amicably and they have given their approval for the album to be released on CD at last.

Fellow Apple Records label mates Pete Ham and Tom Evans from BADFINGER appear on the album as well as The Rolling Stones wind section Bobby Keys and Jim Price.

'Bio Blues' bears all the hallmarks of a classic blues-rock composition, while the more rock-orientated is amongst the best tracks on this album. Closing number 'Take Me Down To The Water' welcomes Badfinger's Pete Ham and Tom Evans on guest vocals, or harmony vocals to be more precise. It's a track that seems to go on forever as well, though that is fine with me. The heady turn on, tune in, drop out undertones set a nice contrast to the more obvious blues-laced overtones and a gently pounding rhythm - lending the song its heartbeat. A true gem of 70's blues-rock and thankfully, it can be shared with the world. 
Music-News
Tracks
1. You Better Let Me Know - 3:26
2. Born For Something - 4:55
3. Too Complicated - 3:27
4. Just Don't Feel So Good - 5:49
5. F-F-F-Females - 4:04
6. Bio-Blues - 5:06
7. If You'd Like To - 3:55
8. Take Me Down To The Water - 7:32
All songs by Jackie Lomax

The Heavy Jelly
*Alex Dmochowski - Bass
*Barry Jenkins - Drums
*Jackie Lomax - Vocals, Guitar, Piano
*John Morshead - Lead Guitar, Vocals
With
*Pete Ham  - Harmony Vocals (Track 8)
*Tom Evans - Harmony Vocals (Track 8)
*Mike Kellie - Drums (Tracks 2,  6)
*Bobby Keys - Tenor Sax (Track 3)
*Jim Price - Trumpet, Trombone (Track 3)

Jackie Lomax - Is This What You Want? (2010 extra tracks reissue)

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Saturday, December 24, 2016

John Cale - John Cale Comes Alive (1984 uk, excellent art rock, vinyl edition)



John Cale has been a stalwart of rock's avant-garde since he and Lou Reed founded the seminal New York art-rock band Velvet Underground in the mid-'60s. As a producer, he has worked with Nico, the Stooges, Patti Smith and Squeeze. His output has ranged from fully orchestrated material (The Academy in Peril) to the nihilistic (Fear). On his 14th album, most of it recorded in concert at London's Lyceum last February, Cale reprises some of his better-known songs. 

The stark, bruising sound achieved on these live cuts carries a skewed power that Neil Young seems to have sought on many of his albums. The asperity of such songs as Leaving It Up to You and Waiting for My Man, a junkie's lament, becomes mesmerizing. So does Cale's bleak, despairing cover version of Elvis Presley's Heartbreak Hotel. Of the two studio tracks, Ooh La La is a flimsy parody of rap records, but Never Give Up on You is bright and brisk, Cale's closest flirtation with pop. His backup band is unexceptional—the tempo on Dr. Mudd jumps around more than once. Cale overcomes, though. This record has a visceral quality that sets it apart. (Ze Island) 
People-Mag
Tracks
1. Ooh La La - 3:25
2. Evidence - 3:26
3. Dead Or Alive - 3:58
4. Chinese Envoy - 3:27
5. Leaving It Up To You - 5:32
6. Dr. Mudd - 3:42
7. Waiting For The Man (Lou Reed) - 4:26
8. Heartbreak Hotel (Tommy Durden, Mae Boren Axton) - 4:16
9. Fear - 3:20
10.Never Give Up On You - 4:58
Words and Music by John Cale unless otherwise written.

Musicians
*Andy Heermans - Bass, Vocals
*David Lichtenstein - Drums, Electronic Drums
*John Cale - Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
*Dave Young - Guitar, Vocals

More John Cale work here:
1971  John Cale And Terry Riley - Church Of Anthrax 
1972  Lou Reed, John Cale And Nico - Live At Bataclan Paris (2013 edition)
1973 Paris 1919
1974 Fear
1975 Slow Dazzle
1975 Helen Of Troy

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Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Hookfoot - Good Times A'comin (1972 uk, exceptional guitar classic rock with prog shades, japan 2010 bonus track remaster)



The name Hookfoot sounds as generic as Bulldog, Sweathog, and other pedestrian 1970s monikers, and the music on the group's second release, Good Times a' Comin', reflects just that. It's Elton John sessionmen -- Caleb Quaye, Dave Glover, and Roger Pope from Tumbleweed Connection and other John discs -- recording their Dick James-published songs which were produced at Dick James Studios and going for the brass ring on their own with feeble results. The a cappella ending to "Living in the City" shows they have vocal as well as instrumental chops, while "Gunner Webb's Changes" lifts musical passages right out of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young's "Long Time Gone" and "Almost Cut My Hair." That should come as no surprise since they covered both Stephen Stills and Neil Young on their self-titled debut from 1971.

Lead guitarist Caleb Quaye writes or co-writes nine of the ten titles, vocalist Ian Duck is the runner up with six, but with titles like "Sweet Sweet Funky Music," "Slick's Blues for Jumbo," and "Flying in the U.S.A.," it's obvious the creativity of Bernie Taupin or Elton John is missing from this effort. The blues-oriented grooves are all solid and played with precision, but they also fail to excite. Some of it comes off like Savoy Brown without any bite. Why they didn't raid the Dick James vaults for a hit or ask their friends John and Taupin to throw them a hook is the real mystery of Hookfoot. It's an elaborate package, with a gatefold containing the lyrics and classy photos, but these aren't what one would classify as songs to be sold to other artists. "Look to Your Churches" sounds inspired by Traffic and the Band, but not up to those artists' standards. 

Sometimes sidemen are supposed to be just that, lending their ability to translate a performer's ideas -- to help put the crowd into a frenzy; one can't see Elton John performing the title track, "Good Times a' Comin'," despite Ian Duck and Caleb Quaye generating interesting moments with their guitar duel. It seems none of John's magic rubbed off on the pair's songwriting chops. Still, had England's pianoman made an appearance on this record, it would have made a world of difference. This same year, Hookfoot's American counterparts -- Danny Kootch, Russ Kunkel, and Leland Sklar -- released the first of three albums under the name the Section. What it proves is that without an Elton John, Carole King, or James Taylor, these records end up sounding like instruments playing themselves. A wonderful argument for the value of charisma and the vacuum of space without a star to fill it with light. 
by Joe Viglione
Tracks
1. Sweet Sweet Funky Music (Caleb Quaye) - 3:14
2. Living In The City (Caleb Quaye) - 4:56
3. If I Had The Words (Ian Duck, Dave Glover, Roger Pope, Caleb Quaye) - 3:20
4. Gunner Webb’s Changes (Ian Duck) - 3:12
5. Painter (Caleb Quaye) - 6:01
6. Flying In The U.S.A. (Caleb Quaye) - 4:17
7. Is Anyone There? (Ian Duck, Dave Glover, Roger Pope, Caleb Quaye) - 4:08
8. Slick’s Blues For Jumbo (Ian Duck, Caleb Quaye) - 1:47
9. Look To Your Churches (Ian Duck, Caleb Quaye) - 2:38
10.Good Times A’ Comin’ (Ian Duck, Dave Glover, Roger Pope, Caleb Quaye) - 6:27
11.Gimme Shelter (Mick Jagger, Keith Richards) - 4:22

The Hookfoot
*Caleb Quaye - Lead Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
*Dave Glover - Bass
*Roger Pope - Drums, Vocals
*Ian Duck - Harmonica, Vocals
*Bob Kulick - Guitar, Vocals (Track 1)

1969  Hookfoot - A Piece Of Pye (2010 japan Remaster)
1971  Hookfoot - Hookfoot (2010 japan remaster)  
1973  Hookfoot - Roaring (2005 expanded edition)

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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Josefus - Josefus...Plus (1969-70 us, fascinating rough heavy psych rock, Akarma bonus tracks edition)



Josefus were known for playing free shows that would last a couple of hours and for a 20-minute version of "Louisiana Blues" that was their signature, and often set-ending, rave-up.   Kicked out of Love Street by the International Artists management after drummer Doug Tull harangued the crowd about how badly IA and Love Street people treated the bands, a few nights later they set up in the parking lot across the street during another band's show at Love Street and literally caused most of the patrons to leave the venue and come across the street to hear Josefus. Bold move.   While their tenure was a short one - a couple of tours and couple of albums - 1969's Dead Man is today a collector's dream album often cited as one of the earliest examples of metal. (Read a brief history of the band at jam280.com.) Only 3,000 copies of Dead Man were pressed, but a sealed copy recently sold on eBay in the UK for $1,100.

Dead Man quickly moved the band into higher, more rarified air. Within a couple of months they were included in a huge package show at the Sam Houston Coliseum with It's A Beautiful Day, Quicksilver Messenger Service, and Grateful Dead. They also opened one of Grand Funk Railroad's Texas tours. But by 1970, the wheels had fallen off; they were sick of each other and just wanted to move on.   Saturday, Dan Electro's will host a benefit for Josefus bassist Ray T. (Turner), who suffered a stroke in July and lost all movement on his left side. Although his condition has improved somewhat with movement returning to his fingers, medical expenses continue to pile up. 

A lifelong musician post-Josefus, Turner had a long career as a sideman and has played blues, R&B, and country with a long list of notable artists: Roy Head, Fiddlin' Frenchie Burke, Isaac Payton Sweat, John Conlee, Brian Collins, Major Lance, Bobby "Blue" Bland, Lightnin' Hopkins, King Ivory and Buddy Spicher.   The event promises a trippy-hippie seven-band lineup which includes Fyrst Tryp, Steve Straker, Z-Rocks, TC & the Cannonballs, Yello Echo, Guy Schwartz and the New Jack Hippies, and Josefus. Saturday's lineup includes original members Pete Bailey (vocals), Dave Mitchell (lead guitar) plus Mark Weathers on bass - part of the band when they recorded in 1989 - and drummer Leesa Harrington-Squyres.  
by William Michael Smith
Tracks
1. Bald Peach - 2:41
2. B.S. Creek - 4:05
3. America - 2:36
4. Im Getting On - 2:30
5. Sefus Blues - 3:12
6. Jimmy, Jimmy - 2:38
7. Feelin' Good - 6:04
8. Condition - 2:58
9. I Saw A Killin' - 2:22
10.Such Is Life - 3:05
11.Country Boy - 3:17
12.Crazy Man - 3:41
13.I Love You (Ray Hillburn, Doug Tull, Ray Turner) - 2:27
14.Get Off My Case - 3:51
15.Louisiana Blues (McKinley Morganfield) - 8:20
16.Light In Heaven - 4:14
All songs by Pete Bailey, Dave Mitchell, Doug Tull, Ray Turner except where stated.

The Josefus
*Dave Mitchell - Lead Guitar
*Pete Bailey - Harmonica, Vocals
*Doug Tull - Percussion
*Ray Turner - Bass
*Ray Hillburn - Guitar (Track 13)

1969-70  Josefus - Dead Man / Get Off My Case

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Monday, December 19, 2016

Sir Lord Baltimore - Kingdom Come / Sir Lord Baltimore (1970/72 us, awesome heavy psych, pre-stoner rock, 2003 reissue)



Brooklyn, NY's Sir Lord Baltimore were arguably America's first bona fide heavy metal band, and the funny thing is, they didn't even know it, since the style had yet to establish itself when the band first burst onto the scene. And because SLB's precocious, raw talent was offset by their immaturity and utter lack of business acumen, their budding career was summarily derailed after just two generally underrated albums. Thus, they were cursed to endure decades of obscurity until their music was rediscovered, vindicated, and often covered or flat-out copied by many stoner rock bands of the 1990s and beyond.

If anything makes sense in the ill-fated Sir Lord Baltimore story, it's the fact that the commercial success attained during their existence was as modest as the band's inner-city roots. Vocalist/drummer John Garner, guitarist Louis Dambra, and bassist Gary Justin were recently graduated from high school and had only been rehearsing for a few months when they auditioned for talent scout Mike Appel, who would later help launch the career of one Bruce Springsteen. Impressed by the band's undeniable power and chemistry, and assured by Dambra (who had just recorded an album with another group named the Koala) that the ferocious riffs he was playing were in fact not copped from Jimmy Page, Appel decided to take the inexperienced young trio under his wing. 

So, after fine-tuning and rearranging their raw materials into a strong batch of songs, Sir Lord Baltimore began recording their debut album, Kingdom Come, in West Orange, NJ, where they reportedly impressed a visiting Pink Floyd and attracted the attention of high-powered artist manager Dee Anthony, who wasted little time pushing out Appel and taking over the group's day-to-day operation. 
by Eduardo Rivadavia
Tracks
1. Kingdom Come - 6:35
2. I Got A Woman - 3:03
3. Hell Hound - 3:20
4. Helium Head (I Got A Love) - 4:02
5. Ain't Got Hung On You - 2:24
6. Master Heartache - 4:37
7. Hard Rain Fallin' - 2:56
8. Lady Of Fire - 2:53
9. Lake Isle Of Innersfree - 4:03
10.Pumped Up - 4:07
11.Chicago Lives - 3:49
12.Loe And Behold - 3:46
13.Woman Tamer - 5:12
14.Caesar LXXI - 5:22
15.Man From Manhattan - 10:34
16.Where Are We Going (Live) - 3:19
Tracks 1-10 written by Mike Appel, Jim Cretecos, Louis Dambra
Tracks 11-16 written by John Linde, Sir Lord Baltimore

Sir Lord Baltimore 
*John Garner - Lead Vocals, Drums
*Louis Dambra - Guitar
*Joey Dambra - Guitar
*Gary Justin - Bass

Related Act
1968  The Koala - The Koala  

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Friday, December 16, 2016

Crosby Stills Nash And Young - Live (1974 us/canada/uk, amazing folk classic rock, 2013 four discs box set)



Five words pretty much say it all. Crosby. Stills. Nash. And Young. For the past 45 years, they’ve come to represent the epitome of the traveling troubadour, singer/songwriter ideal, the final remnants of sixties optimism, the last embers of hippie idealism, and a musical legacy that’s left its impact on every band and every artist that’s ever aspired to some kind of Americana achievement.

As if any further proof was needed, here it is: CSNY 1974, a stunning box set boasting three CDs and one DVD (a single CD distillation is also available as well; both are from Rhino). Included are 40 songs and eight videos culled from the quartet’s highly touted 1974 tour, a point in their combined careers that found them in their prime, at least as far as their regal reputation was concerned. The remarkable vibe emanating from that epic journey stays intact, on par with memories of the music, which in every sense remains just as passionate and powerful now. Indeed, the 40 years between past and present practically disappear. No dusty historical document this, but rather a fresh reminder of why this band remains the finest so-called “Super Group” in all of rock history.

Still, all nostalgia aside, it’s still the melodies that matter most, and here, amidst this assortment of familiar band standards, solo standouts and songs that have heretofore never officially seen the light of day, the listener is presented with the very best the quarter had to offer, both individually and collectively. Many are already well pressed in the musical firmament — “Love the One You’re With,” “Almost Cut My Hair,” “Wooden Ships,” “Teach Your Children,” and “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” (of course), but all are revived with a passion and purpose that reflects not only their initial intent, but also the fact that they felt they still had something to prove.

Likewise, the opportunity to finally own unreleased material made legendary in bootleg form — mostly Young’s but an ample stock from the others as well — makes this the Holy Grail for collectors as well as for everyday enthusiasts. [As the owner of more than a handful of recordings from the ’74 tour, I can personally attest to the truth which Dr. Zimmerman utters. —Bootleg Ed.]

Adding to that treasure trove of total delights is the eight song DVD recorded at the Capital Centre in Landover Maryland (the first such in-house video monitoring system utilized in the U.S.) and at Wembley Stadium in the U.K., a wealth of unseen footage that makes these archival performances appear so fresh and vivid it’s as if it was recorded only yesterday. It is, in a word, simply a marvel to witness in the here and now. Likewise, the massive 185 page booklet that accompanies this extravaganza is practically worth the price of admission on its own, chock full of concise commentary, detailed liner notes and stunning photos. The latter comes as no surprise, considering the images were captured by the group’s photographer and confidant, Joel Bernstein, who also — not coincidentally — co-produced this box with pal Graham Nash.

The word “essential” is bandied about quite a bit these days in reference to landmark recordings. Yet, here it applies in every sense. CSNY 74 is one for the ages.
By Lee Zimmerman
Tracks
Disc 1
1. Love the One You're With (Stephen Stills) - 6:05
2. Wooden Ships (David Crosby, Paul Kantner, Stephen Stills) - 6:36
3. Immigration Man (Graham Nash) - 3:47
4. Helpless (Neil Young) - 4:45
5. Carry Me (David Crosby) - 4:41
6. Johnny's Garden (Stephen Stills) - 5:20
7. Traces (Neil Young) - 3:17
8. Grave Concern (Graham Nash) - 3:11
9. On the Beach (Neil Young) - 7:40
10.Black Queen (Stephen Stills) - 8:25
11.Almost Cut My Hair (David Crosby) - 7:07
Disc 2
1. Change Partners (Stephen Stills) - 3:51
2. The Lee Shore (David Crosby) - 4:48
3. Only Love Can Break Your Heart (Neil Young) - 3:28
4. Our House (Graham Nash) - 3:38
5. Fieldworker (Graham Nash) - 3:07
6. Guinevere (David Crosby) - 6:14
7. Time After Time (David Crosby) - 3:48
8. Prison Song (Graham Nash) - 4:02
9. Long May You Run (Neil Young) - 4:13
10.Goodbye Dick (Neil Young) - 1:40
11.Mellow My Mind (Neil Young) - 2:33
12.Old Man (Neil Young) - 4:23
13.Word Game (Stephen Stills) - 6:16
14.Myth of Sisyphus (Stephen Stills, Kenny Passarelli) - 4:44
15.Blackbird (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 2:48
16.Love Art Blues (Neil Young) - 2:57
17.Hawaiian Sunrise (Neil Young) - 2:56
18.Teach Your Children (Graham Nash) - 3:16
19.Suite: Judy Blue Eyes (Stephen Stills) - 9:25
Disc 3
1. Déjà Vu (David Crosby) - 8:29
2. My Angel (Stephen Stills) - 4:35
3. Pre-Road Downs (Graham Nash) - 3:30
4. Don't Be Denied (Neil Young) - 6:40
5. Revolution Blues (Neil Young) - 4:21
6. Military Madness (Graham Nash) - 5:04
7. Long Time Gone (David Crosby) - 6:05
8. Pushed It Over the End (Neil Young) - 7:52
9. Chicago (Graham Nash) - 4:43
10.Ohio (Neil Young) - 6:00
DVD Audio
1. Only Love Can Break Your Heart (Neil Young) - 3:34
2. Almost Cut My Hair (David Crosby) - 7:44
3. Grave Concern (Graham Nash) - 3:24
4. Old Man (Neil Young) - 3:54  
5. Johnny's Garden (Stephen Stills) - 3:43
6. Our House (Graham Nash) - 3:47
7. Déjà Vu (David Crosby) - 8:00
8. Pushed It Over the End (Neil Young) - 7:57

Personnel
*David Crosby - Vocals, Guitars, Tambourine
*Stephen Stills - Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Bass
*Graham Nash - Vocals, Keyboards, Guitars, Harmonica
*Neil Young - Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Harmonica, Banjo Guitar
*Tim Drummond - Bass
*Russ Kunkel - Drums
*Joe Lala - Percussion

Related Acts
1968  Mike Bloomfield, Al Kooper, Steve Stills - The Super Sessions (2014 Hybrid Multichannel SACD 24/88)
1970  Stephen Stills - Stephen Stills (2008 japan SHM remaster)
1971-73  Manassas - Pieces (2009 release)
1972  Stephen Stills - Manassas (2006 HDCD)  
1973  Graham Nash - Wild Tales
1975-76/78  Stephen Stills - Stills / Illegal Stills / Thoroughfare Gap (2007 double disc issue)
1976  The Stills Young Band - Long May You Run

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Thursday, December 15, 2016

Maxfield Parrish - It's a Cinch to Give Legs to Old Hard-Boiled Eggs (1972 us, beautiful country folk rock)



Maxfield Parrish’s only album was released in 1972, well after the band had split up. Members from the great California band Kaleidoscope produced and played on this underappreciated record which was originally recorded in early 1969. Had this album seen release in 1969, it would have been regarded today, as an early, innovative slab of country-rock.

It’s A Cinch strongly recalls the Byrds’ Notorious Byrd Brothers/Easy Rider era or even the New Riders early material (great stuff!!), with strong songwriting, superb musicianship and a few nifty psych/space rock moves. There are some great, catchy acoustic rock songs in “Julie Columbus” and “Cruel Deception.”  The weirder creations, “The Widow,” an 8 minute mantra, and “The Untransmuted Child” work really well too. In particular, “The Untransmuted Child” is excellent, sounding like a trippy mountain hymn with hillbilly vocals, organ, harmonica and hallucinary guitar sustain.
By Jason Nardelli
Tracks
1. The Lighthouse Is Falling - 3:13
2. It's Alright (I Love Her) - 2:58
3. Ellie McCall - 2:05
4. Cruel Deception - 4:11
5. Bottle Of Reds Blues (David McClellan, Perrin Muir) - 3:48
6. Julie Columbus - 2:28
7. Cross Over The World - 2:03
8. The Widow (Lennie Porrue) - 8:13
9. 'Round The Morning - 2:56
10.The Untransmuted Child - 6:26
11.Juanita - 3:58
12.Hershey - 2:55
13.Whoa Johnny - 3:24
14.Mother Of Pearl - 3:04
15.Dismal River - 7:44
All songs by Perrin Muir, David Biasotti except where indicated
Bonus Tracks 11-15 from The Palmer Canyon tape

The Maxfield Parrish
*Perrin Muir - Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
*David Biasotti - Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
*Randy Groenke - Banjo
*David McClellan - Mandolin
With
*Chester Crill - Organ, Piano, Harmonica
*Chris Darrow - Vocals, Bass
*David Lindley - Electric Guitar, Banjo
*Bernie Leadon - Acoustic Guitar
*John Ware - Drums, Piano
*John London - Bass

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Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Sandy Coast - A 'n' B Sides And More / The Golden Years Of Dutch Pop Music (1965-88 holland, fine blend of beat psych and classic rock, 2015 double disc digi pak edition)



Formed in 1961 in Voorburg as the Sandy Coast Skiffle Group, they had the following names: the Sandy Coast Five, Sandy Coast Rockers and, finally, Sandy Coast.  Thanks to the Hitwezen magazine-organised talent search, they were awarded a record contract with Negram in 1965.   Featured members: Hans Vermeulen (vocals, guitar, keyboards), his brother Jan (bass and guitar), Jos de Jager (bass, 1964-67), Henk Smitskamp (bass, ex-Livin' Blues, from 1970 till 1971, to Shocking Blue), Onno Bevoort (drums, in 1970 temporarily replaced by Will Morkus, in 1974 to Water), Ron Westerbeek (vocals, guitar, keyboards, ex-Daddy's Act, to Water), Charles Kersbergen (guitar, until 1965) and Marianne Nobles (vocals, ex-solo, 1972).   In 1974, Sandy Coast disbanded; Hans formed Rainbow Train together with his brother Jan

Sandy Coast in 1965 took his first single on: Being in love. In 1966 , the group with his fourth single, the first Top 40 hit- to address. We'll meet again, a cover of Vera Lynn 's classic, was not higher than number 39 and the next she's sorry mine did not go beyond one week at number 40. That same year, Sandy Coast his television debut in the NCRV - program Twien . In 1967 and '68 were the hits and more slowly if Sandy Coast its first album, ... And Their particular record. In the spring of 1968 followed their biggest hit so far I see your face again.

That same year the band went along with the current music trend and changed the style of beat to psychedelic rock . Hans Vermeulen had a cold when he saw the number inzong Capital punishment, but that did not prevent it a success, both artistically and commercially. The album From the workshop was well received by critics. In 1969 Sandy Coast signed a contract with the British Page One Records . There they took three singles and album Shipwreck on, but that they do not equaled the success of From the workshop. When the bosses at Page One - Larry Page and Dick James - had a fight, kept the record label to exist. Sandy Coast two years therefore could not record long record. In this short time changed the composition of the group. In 1970 replaced Will Morkus Bevoort here, but Bevoort same year came back. The band was expanded to a quintet for some time, with Jan Vermeulen switched to rhythm guitar and Henk Smitskamp of Livin 'Blues bassist was. A year later, however Smitskamp Shocking Blue and Jan Vermeulen went back to play bass.

Ultimately bought Willem van Kooten the block and was a contract with Polydor signed. In 1971 scored his biggest hit since Sandy Coast True love that's a wonder that the third took place in the Top 40. By becoming the group finally broke through in Flanders . It came from the album Sandy Coast Just hit that after that a friend brought forth. In 1972 came the singles Just two little creatures and the top 10-hit Summer Train. In 1973 the group had his last hit with preliminary Blackboard jungle lady, from the disappointing album Stonewall. One year after this disappointing album, the group apart. The brothers founded the group Vermeulen Rainbow Train and Bevoort Westerbeek and started the band Water . Hans Vermeulen in the year 1970 much more successful as a producer and composer for other groups and artists. He wrote and produced including the first number-one hit for Anita Meyer : The alternative way. 

In 1988 Sandy Coast came back together for an album. In this comeback lacked Bevoort, which was replaced by Ton op ‘t Hof. The group here was completed by keyboardist Hans Jansen and guitarist Hans Hollestelle. were old songs that had been played back on the album Rendezvous. After this album Sandy Coast still occasionally performed together. Hans Vermeulen continued to produce and had the early 90s success with singer Ruth Jacott. But he also faced personal and financial problems. He divorced his wife Hilde (known under the stage name Dianne Marchal) and already had built a tax of a half million guilders. Thanks to his manager Peer Evers and an arrangement with the social fund of Buma/Stemra he could pay off his debts in four years, after which he emigrated to the mid-nineties the Thai island of Ko Samui. There he married the singer Thai Ato. he now he has to Ko Samui built a studio and will occasionally return to the Netherlands for performances.

On May 11, 1999 Jan Vermeulen died at the age of 54 from colon cancer. He was buried on 17 May and Anita Meyer and Jan Rietman Rainbow Train performed at his funeral.
Tracks
Disc 1
1. Being In Love (Hans Vermeulen, Jan Vermeulen) - 2:12
2. I Want You For My Own (Hans Vermeulen, Jos de Jager) - 2:00
3. Subject Of My Thoughts (Jan Vermeulen) - 2:49
4. I'm A Fool - 2:34
5. That Girl Was Mine - 1:58
6. I Lost A Dream - 2:25
7. We'll Meet Again (R. Parker. H. Charles) - 2:25
8. Comin' Home - 2:16
9. Sorry She's Mine (Steve Marriott, Ronnie Lane) - 2:45
10.Make Me Belong To You (Chip Taylor, Billy Vera) - 2:00
11.A Girl Like You (Ford) - 1:56
12.Sing Before Breakfast (Hans van Eijck) - 2:04
13.Milk And Tranquilisers (Samson Roamer) - 2:33
14.I'm Working My Way Back To You Babe (Sandy Linzer, Denny Randell) - 2:52
15.And Her Name Is... - 2:09
16.Anyway You Want Me - 2:14
17.I See Your Face Again - 1:57
18.Goodbye, Don't Cry - 2:31
19.Innocent Girl - 3:09
20.My Empty World (Hans Vermeulen, Jan Vermeulen) - 2:32
21.Pretty Clothes (Marian De Garriga) - 3:47
22.The Way I Feel About You (Marian De Garriga) - 3:20
23.Capital Punishment - 5:24
24.My Friend Abdullah (Hans Vermeulen, Jan Vermeulen) - 4:37
25.North Canadian Paradise - 4:03
26.Advice (Hans Vermeulen, Jan Vermeulen) - 3:20
27.Deep Down Down (Ron E. Westerbeek, Onno Bevoort) - 2:53
28.Back To The City - 2:50
All songs by Hans Vermeulen except where stated
Disc 2
1. Eleanor Rigby (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 3:16
2. In My Opinion - 2:08
3. True Love That's A Wonder - 3:08
4. If - 1:57
5. Just A Friend - 3:00
6. Sorry - 3:54
7. Just Two Little Creatures (Ron Westerbeek) - 3:22
8. What Kind Of Freedom (P. J. Vermeulen) - 3:08
9. Summertrain (Ron Westerbeek) - 3:23
10.A Place Near The Sea (P. J. Vermeulen) - 3:49
11.Blackboard Jungle Lady (Ron Westerbeek) - 3:15
12.Don't Get Me Wrong - 3:54
13.The Eyes Of Jenny - 4:25
14.It's My Time Now - 4:02
15.Hollywood (Hans Vermeulen, Ron Westerbeek) - 3:08
16.Yosemite Park (Ron Westerbeek, Hans Vermeulen) - 3:43
17.Rainy Days (Hans Vermeulen, Ron Westerbeek) - 3:42
18.Giles (Ron Westerbeek, E. M. Snijders) - 4:32
19.Sandy Coast with The Stylus Horns - Ophelia (J. R. Robertson) - 2:44
20.Blackboard Jungle Lady '88 () - 3:11
21.Medley: Subject Of My Thoughts / Summertrain / Just A Friend (Live) (Jan Vermeulen, Ron Westerbeek, Hans Vermeulen) - 5:08
All songs by Hans Vermeulen except where indicated
 
The Sandy Coast
*Hans Vermeulen - Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
*Onno Bevoort - Drums (1961-70, 1970-74, 1980-82)
*Jan Vermeulen - Bass, Guitar (1964-74, 1980-82, 1988)
*Ron Westerbeek - Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards (1968-74, 1980-82, 1988)
*Charles Kersbergen - Guitar (1965)
*Jos De Jager - Bass (1964-67)
*Henk Smitskamp - Bass (1970-71)
*Will Morkus - Drums (1970)
*Marianne Nobles - Vocals (1972)

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Monday, December 12, 2016

The Gods - To Samuel A Son (1969 uk, great psych rock, 2009 japan bonus track remaster)



Here’s a bit of a conundrum: whereas concept albums often shift melodies down in favor of big ideas, this one is all about songs – unlike THE GODS’ debut that saw them try to enter the already trodden waters. Beating FIRE’s similarly shaped "The Magic Shoemaker" time-wise, the second time around the band gave reins to Ken Hensley who, less constrained by the progressive paradigm of the day, came up not only with memorable tunes but also with the trademark sound he’d perfect in URIAH HEEP.

It’s unmistakably his composer style behind the vocal line of the title track, and the acoustic “He’s Growing”, while still rooted in psychedelia, could have easily find a place on any of the master’s solo records. But for all that, and a few lightweight numbers such as “Penny Dear” with its Caribbean undertow or the TRAFFIC-like “Autumn”, this is an ensemble work, as proven by a single cover of “Maria” from “West Side Story”, in the vein of but not as wild as THE NICE’s take on “America”. Lee Kerslake’s drums add tragic tones to the heavy vibe of “Groozy”, and John Glascock’s bass punctuates the otherwise dry bopping of “Lady Lady”, yet on the pop side of things, the singalong-inducing “Momma I Need”, electric piano purring under the caress of vocal harmonies, sounds like a hit that never was. The band never realized their potential, so obvious here, in the last chapter of THE GODS’ story, but its role as a springboard for all involved is undeniable.
by Dmitry M. Epstein
Tracks
1. To Samuel A Son (Ken Hensley) - 3:29
2. Eight O'Clock In The Morning (Lee Kerslake) - 3:16
3. He's Growing (Joe Konas, John Glascock) - 2:25
4. Sticking Wings On Flies (Joe Konas, Ken Hensley) - 2:39
5. Lady Lady (Ken Hensley) - 3:18
6. Penny Dear (Joe Konas) - 2:34
7. Long Time, Sad Time, Bad Time (Ken Hensley) - 3:12
8. Five To Three (Ken Hensley, Joe Konas) - 2:59
9. Autumn (Ken Hensley, Joe Konas) - 3:12
10.Yes I Cry (Joe Konas) - 2:40
11.Groozy (Sugarman, Robertson) - 3:38
12.Momma I Need (Ken Hensley, Joe Konas) - 3:54
13.Candlelight (Ken Hensley) - 2:31
14.Lovely Anita (Lee Kerslake) - 3:29
15.Maria (Leonard Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim) - 3:58
Bonus Track #15

The Gods
*John Glascock - Bass, Vocals
*Ken Hensley - Guitar, Percussion, Keyboards, Vocals
*Lee Kerslake - Drums
*Joe Konas - Guitar, Vocals

1968  Genesis (2009 Japan remaster) 

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Sunday, December 11, 2016

The Gods - Genesis (1968 uk, splendid psych rock, 2009 japan extra tracks remaster)



After leaving Stevenage based R'n'B outfit The Jimmy Brown Sound in early 1965 keyboardist / guitarist / vocalist Ken Hensley formed The Gods with Mick Taylor (guitar), John Glasscock (bass / vocals) and Brian Glasscock (drums). However this line up only lasted until June 1967 when Taylor quit to join John Mayalls Bluesbreakers and then The Rolling Stones. Hensley then moved to Hampshire where, whilst living in a van(!), he met up with bassist Paul Newton and put together a new version of The Gods which featured Hensley, Newton, drummer Lee Kerslake and guitarist John Konas. However despite building up a good following on the South Coast collage circuit Newton left (he later became a founding member of Uriah Heep) and was replaced by Greg Lake. With a residency at Londons Marquee and a contract with EMI's Columbia label it looked like The Gods would at last release something but, as Hensley recalls, "Just as we were about to start recording we had a falling out with Greg. The main problem was that he was far too talented to be kept in the background.".

With Lake leaving in the summer of 1968 to form King Crimson (and later Emmerson Lake And Palmer) John Glasscock returned to the line up and the band released the album "Genesis" (SCX 6286), now an £ 85 collectors item, and the single "Baby Rich" / " Somewhere In The Steet" (DB 8486) all recorded on a four track studio. This was followed by the singles "Hey! Bulldog" / "Real Love Guaranteed" (DB 8544) and "Maria" (from "West Side Story") / "Long Time Sad Time Bad Time" (DB 8572) both released in 1969 though by the time the bands second LP "To Sammuel A Son" (SCX 6372) was released at the end of the year The Gods had long since ceased to exist. In fact they had become the band Toe Fat backing ex-Rebel Rouser Cliff Bennett and appeared on one self titled LP released on Parlophone.

Following this Ken Hensley became a founding member of Uriah Heep when again he teamed up with Paul Newton. He also released three solo LPs ("Proud Words On A Dusty Shelf", "Eager To Please" and "Free Spirit") as well as working with the likes of Blackfoot and Ozzy Osbourne. Kerslake, after a short spell with the National Head Band, also joined Uriah Heep whilst John Glasscock later worked with Chicken Shack, Carmen and Jethro Tull whilst Konos quit the playing side to run a music shop in Ontario, Canada. 
by Mark Brennan
Tracks
1. Towards The Skies (Joe Konas) - 3:25
2. Candles Getting Shorter - 4:28
3. You're My Life (Joe Konas, Lee Kerslake) - 3:20
4. Looking Glass - 4:14
5. Misleading Colours (Lee Kerslake, Joe Konas) - 3:40
6. Radio Show (Robertson, Sugarman) - 3:11
7. Plastic Horizon (Robertson, Sugarman) - 3:26
8. Farthing Man (Joe Konas) - 3:30
9. I Never Know - 5:41
10.Time And Eternity (Joe Konas, Lee Kerslake) - 2:43
11.Baby's Rich - 2:48
12.Somewhere In The Street (Ken Hensley)  - 2:50
13.Hey Bulldog (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 3:03
14.Real Love Guaranteed - 2:29
All songs by Joe Konas, Ken Hensley except where stated
Bonus Tracks 11-14

The Gods
*John Glascock - Bass, Vocals
*Ken Hensley - Guitar, Percussion, Keyboards, Vocals
*Lee Kerslake - Drums
*Joe Konas - Guitar, Vocals

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Saturday, December 10, 2016

Frank Zappa - Meat Light The Uncle Meat Project Object (1968-69 us, freaky avant garde experimental prog rock, three discs 2016 release)



If you were paying close attention to the UMG-released Zappa titles, you may have noticed that Uncle Meat was one of the few pre-1982 albums that wasn't reissued  using the original master tapes for the first time (all the Ryko masters were altered by Zappa). Meat Light remedies that by finally releasing the Uncle Meat original  vinyl mix, remastered from the original master tapes for the very first time on CD. The results are stunning. The album literally sounds better than it ever has, with  a crisp clarity to all the instruments, even on the most dense tracks. This alone would justify purchase for most Zappa fanatics...but wait! There's more! 

Who knew there was ANOTHER Uncle Meat?!? Yes, disc two and part of disc three present "Uncle Meat: Original Sequence." Many of the tracks are exactly the same, but  with different sequencing and some completely unreleased material, all segued together with some additional contributions from the Apostolic Vlorch Injector  (responsible for the blasts of noise on Uncle Meat and We're Only in It for the Money). "Whiskey Wah" and "The Whip" are previously unreleased guitar solos. "King  Kong" doesn't end the set; it's the end of "Side 2" (of four), and it doesn't include the part that was recorded on a flatbed diesel at a Miami Pop Festival. "Cops and  Buns" was included on The Lost Episodes, but in an edited form. Some of the other spoken bits ("Our Bizarre Relationship," "If We'd Been Living in California...")  have just a little bit of extra material on them, providing a bit of further insight. "Mr. Green Genes" has a slightly different mix with some additional organ and  vocals. The "Original Sequence" closes with "Cruisin' for Burgers"...but that's not the end of Meat Light! "A Bunch of Stuff" seems to be a spoken intro to the film  Uncle Meat. Tracks like "Tango" and "More Beer" are just short cues. The single version of "Dog Breath" is a gas: no main vocals/lyrics -- just prominent (and  awesome!) backing vocals with extra guitar and saxophone mixed in. "The String Quartet" is a medley of Uncle Meat tunes that was often performed live by the Mothers,  but this sounds like a studio version. "Electric Aunt Jemima" is a different, more modern-sounding mix, while "Exercise 4" is an unused further elaboration of the  "Uncle Meat Variations." 

The alternate mix of "Mr. Green Genes" has a different vocal mix and cool keyboards added. "Echo Pie" takes Jimmy Carl Black's displeasure in  "If We'd Been Living in California" and kicks it up a notch or five. "1/4 Tone Unit" is a short, pretty chamber ensemble piece, "Sakuji's March" is a short percussion  piece, and "No. 4" is a scored piece with some amazing double piano followed by double marimba. The extended version of "Prelude to Uncle Meat" adds about a minute  and a half to the standard version, along with some interesting extra guitar at the end. "My Guitar (Proto 1)" is a ripping instrumental with FZ jamming on the "My  Guitar Wants to Kill Your Mama" riff. Hearing the guitar from "Nine Types of Industrial Pollution" played at the original speed is extremely interesting. You can hear  Frank playing acoustic guitar over a faint, slowed-down drum track. It's rare to hear Zappa play acoustic guitar at all, and his playing here is quite different than  what he's normally known for. The live version of "Uncle Meat" sounds great. The instrumental version of "Dog Breath" is a bit more refined and not quite as raucous  as the single version...until the guitar solo! Meat Light closes with an alternate mix of "The Dog Breath Variations." This is a set fans have been waiting for for  years.The sound is a huge improvement over all previous Uncle Meat CDs and the additional material is all excellent. 

Uncle Meat is arguably Zappa's most avant-garde, most dense, most wide-ranging, and one of his most difficult albums for some. It's also one of his very best and  Meat Light really does justice to this masterpiece.
by Sean Westergaard
Tracks
Disc 1  Original 1969 Vinyl Mix
1. Uncle Meat: Main Title Theme - 1:56
2. The Voice Of Cheese - 0:26
3. Nine Types Of Industrial Pollution - 6:02
4. Zolar Czackl - 0:54
5. Dog Breath, In The Year Of The Plague - 3:59
6. The Legend Of The Golden Arches - 3:27
7. Louie Louie (At the Royal Albert Hall in London) - 2:18
8. The Dog Breath Variations - 1:50
9. Sleeping In A Jar - 0:50
10.Our Bizarre Relationship - 1:05
11.The Uncle Meat Variations - 4:46
12.Electric Aunt Jemima - 1:46
13.Prelude To King Kong - 3:39
14.God Bless America (Live at the Whisky A Go Go) - 1:10
15.A Pound For A Brown On The Bus - 1:29
16.Ian Underwood Whips It Out (Live on stage in Copenhagen) - 5:09
17.Mr. Green Genes - 3:13
18.We Can Shoot You - 2:03
19.“If We’d All Been Living In California...” - 1:14
20.The Air - 2:57
21.Project X - 4:49
22.Cruising For Burgers - 2:18
23.King Kong (as played by the Mothers in a studio) - 0:51
24.King Kong (its magnificence as interpreted by Dom DeWild) - 1:19
25.King Kong (as Motorhead explains it) - 1:45
26.King Kong (the Gardner Varieties) - 6:14
27.King Kong (as played by 3 deranged Good Humor Trucks) - 0:37
28.King Kong (live on a flat bed diesel in the middle of a race track at a Miami Pop Festival... the Underwood ramifications) - 7:24
Disc 2  Original Sequence
1. Dog Breath, In The Year Of The Plague - 2:55
2. The Legend Of The Golden Arches - 3:16
3. The Voice Of Cheese - 0:26
4. Whiskey Wah - 1:34
5. Nine Types Of Industrial Pollution - 6:03
6. Louie Louie (Live at the Royal Albert Hall in London) - 2:27
7. The Dog Breath Variations - 1:51
8. Shoot You Percussion Item - 1:28
9. The Whip - 5:03
10.The Uncle Meat Variations - 4:47
11.King Kong - 10:46
12.Project X Minus 5 - 1:47
13.A Pound For A Brown On The Bus - 1:29
14.Electric Aunt Jemima - 1:46
15.Prelude To King Kong - 3:39
16.God Bless America (Live at the Whiskey A Go Go) - 1:11
17.Sleeping In A Jar - 0:51
18.Cops And Buns - 5:56
19.Zolar Czakl - 0:47
19.Zolar Czakl - 0:47
Disc 3
1. We Can Not Shoot You - 1:16
2. Mr. Green Genes - 3:13
3. “PooYeahrg” - 0:32
4. Uncle Meat: Main Title Theme - 1:27
5. Our Bizarre Relationship - 1:10
6. “Later We Can Shoot You” - 0:15
7. “If We’d All Been Living In California…” - 1:19
8. ‘Ere Ian Whips It/JCB Spits It/Motorhead Rips It - 2:30
9. The Air - 2:58
10.Project X .5 - 2:38
11.Cruising For Burgers - 2:23
12.“A Bunch Of Stuff” - 1:40
13.Dog Breath (Single Version) - 2:55
14.Tango - 0:24
15.The String Quartet - 3:06
16.Electric Aunt Jemima (Mix Outtake) - 1:40
17.Exercise 4 Variant - 4:32
18.Zolar Czackl (Mix Outtake) - 0:45
19.“More Beer!” - 0:17
20.Green Genes Snoop - 1:13
21.Mr. Green Genes (Mix Outtake) - 3:11
22.Echo Pie - 2:16
23.1/4 Tone Unit - 1:06
24.Sakuji’s March - 0:35
25.No. 4 - 1:52
26.Prelude To King Kong (Extended Version) - 5:24
27.Blood Unit - 1:22
28.My Guitar (Proto I- Excerpt) - 2:12
29.Nine Types Of Industrial Pollution (Guitar track, normal speed) - 9:53
30.Uncle Meat (Live at Columbia University 1969) - 4:44
31.Dog Breath (Instrumental) - 2:50
32.The Dog Breath Variations (Mix Outtake) - 1:46

Personnel
*Frank Zappa — Guitar, Low Grade Vocals, Percussion
*Ray Collins — Swell Vocals
*Jimmy Carl Black — Drums, Droll Humor, Poverty
*Roy Estrada — Electric Bass, Cheeseburgers, Pachuco Falsetto
*Don (Dom De Wild) Preston — Electric Piano, Tarot Cards, Brown Rice
*Billy (The Oozer) Mundi — Drums
*Bunk (Sweatpants) Gardner — Piccolo, Flute, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Soprano Sax, Alto Sax, Tenor Sax, Bassoon (All Of These Electric,/Or Nonelectric Depending)
*Ian Underwood — Electric Organ, Piano, Harpsichord, Celeste, Flute, Clarinet, Alto Sax, Baritone Sax, Special Assistance, Copyist, Industrial Relations, Teen Appeal
*Artie (With The Green Mustache) Tripp — Drums, Timpani, Vibes, Marimba, Xylophone, Wood Blocks, Bells, Small Chimes, Cheerful Outlook, Specific Enquires
*Euclid James (Motorhead/Motorishi) Sherwood — Pop Star, Frenetic Tenor Sax Stylings, Tambourine, Choreography, Obstinance, Equipment Setter-Upper When He’s Not Hustling Local Groupies
*Ruth Komanoff Who Plays Marimba, Vibes With Artie On Many Of The Tracks,
*Nelcy Walker - The Soprano Voice

Related Act
1969  Sandy Hurvitz - Sandy's Album Is Here At Last! (2010 issue)
1970  Essra Mohawk - Primordial Lovers
1974  Essra Mohawk - Essra Mohawk (2010 bonus tracks edition)
1976  Essra Mohawk - Essra (2003 japan release)

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Thursday, December 8, 2016

Roy Buchanan - Roy Buchanan / Second Album (1972-73 us, exceptional blues rock with country traces, 2002 remaster)



The recording and production on Roy Buchanan's first record for Polydor, is delightfully bare, sparse in ornamentation, and full of bum notes and aborted ideas that would be deleted on most commercial releases. It is a loose, highly improvised affair that amply demonstrates why the leader is one of the underappreciated giants of rootsy guitar. Straddling country, blues, and traditional rock & roll, Buchanan's playing is fiery and unpremeditated. His tone is delightfully raw and piercing, his solo ideas impetuous and uncluttered. On the instrumental tracks, such as his famous reading of "Sweet Dreams" or Buchanan's own "The Messiah Will Come Again," one can see why he was such an influence on Jeff Beck, another master of the instrument known for his genre-blending and ragged spontaneity. 

There is a slight Michael Bloomfield influence felt in Buchanan's blues playing, most evident in the first chorus of "John's Blues" and the quasi-Eastern ornamentations on "Pete's Blue." He plays with pitch, placing notes in unexpected places, constantly keeping the listener guessing. The country tracks, such as "I am a Lonesome Fugitive" and Hank Williams' "Hey, Good Lookin'," benefit greatly from Chuck Tilley's understated vocals. Despite Tilley's presence, the main focus on this record is Buchanan's wailing guitar, which punctuating the vocals with bluesy cries and country moans. 

The strongest track on Roy Buchanan is "The Messiah Will Come Again." This song opens with Buchanan's mumbled spoken word intro over quiet organ and then yields to spine-tingling, sorrow-laden Telecaster that cries and screams in existential torment before giving way in turn to percussive flurries that make less sense as melodic improvisation than as cries of passion. This is raw guitar playing and music making, not for the faint of heart. Fans of blues or country guitar, or those just curious why Jeff Beck would dedicate "'Cause We've Ended As Lovers" from Blow By Blow to Buchanan, would do themselves a favor by picking up this album. 
by Daniel Gioffre

This release contains Roy Buchanan's major-label debut LP Roy Buchanan (1972) and the follow-up, Second Album (1973). After the record company rejected a request from the artist to release a live set, Buchanan surreptiously issued the platter on his own under the guise of Buck & the Snake Stretchers (1971). Polydor essentially took the same core personnel, removed them from their more familiar concert club environs and put them into the comparatively sterile recording studio to cut much of the same material. Buchanan is supported by the aforementioned Snake Stretchers: Ned Davis (drums), Dick Heintze (keyboards), Teddy Irwin (rhythm guitar), Chuck Tilley (vocals/rhythm guitar), and Peter van Allen (bass). After honing the tunes night after night, there is little wonder when hearing the tight arrangements or the comfortable communication between Buchanan and company. 

Fittingly, the opening cover of Don Gibson's "Sweet Dreams" establishes both the performers' unfettered rapport, as well as the deft precision and unbridled emotion evident in Buchanan's playing. Stylistically, the tracks range from the rural-flavored "I Am a Lonesome Fugitive" or the Creole-infused "Cajun" to the hauntingly noir solos on "Messiah Will Come Again." Arguably, the highlights are the instrumentals "Pete's Blues" and, to a greater extent, the simply stunning epic "John's Blues." The latter may be the guitarist's greatest and most illustrative studio side. Less than six months and a few minor personnel changes later, Second Album was documented to similar results. The emphasis is once again on a variety of approaches to traditionals and originals alike. Erskine Hawkins' "After Hours" is given a formidable workout, while Buchanan's own "Five String Blues" is a seminal example of the artistry that he brings to his craft, as the guitar alternately cries and rejoices at his touch. "I Won't Tell You No Lie" is a funkier number, recalling a mid-tempo interpretation of Bill Withers' "Ain't No Sunshine." 

From here, the Snake Stretchers disbanded as new producers incorporated their own musicians and vocalists. Sadly, few (if any) of Buchanan's subsequent efforts would reveal the thoroughly solid ensemble work that Roy Buchanan and Second Album so flawlessly demonstrate. 
by Lindsay Planer
Tracks
Roy Buchanan 1972
1. Sweet Dreams (Don Gibson) - 3:34
2. I Am A Lonesome Fugitive (Casey Anderson, Liz Anderson) - 3:43
3. Cajun - 1:35
4. John's Blues - 5:04
5. Haunted House (Robert Geddins) - 2:45
6. Pete's Blue - 7:16
7. The Messiah Will Come Again - 5:55
8. Hey, Good Lookin' (Hank Williams) - 2:15
The Second Album 1973
9. Filthy Teddy - 3:11
10.After Hours (Erskine Hawkins, Avery Parrish) - 6:13
11.Five String Blues - 6:24
12.Thank You Lord - 2:26
13.Treat Her Right (Roy Head, Gene Kurtz) - 2:43
14.I Won't Tell You No Lies - 6:35
15.Tribute To Elmore James - 3:27
16.She Once Lived Here (Autry Inman) - 3:03
All compositions by Roy Buchanan except where noted

Musicians
*Roy Buchanan - Vocals, Guitars
*Ned Davis - Drums (Tracks 1-8, 16)
*Dick Heintze - Keyboards, Organ, Piano
*Chuck Tilley - Vocals (Track 1-8, 13)
*Pete Van Allen - Bass (Tracks 1-8)
*Teddy Irwin - Guitars
*Gerry Mercer - Drums (Tracks 9-15)
*Don Payne - Bass (Tracks 9-16)

1969-71  Roy Buchanan - The Prophet
1969-78  Roy Buchanan - Sweet Dreams The Anthology

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