Thursday, October 31, 2019

Michael Chapman - Savage Amusement (1976 uk, remarkable folk blues rock, 2015 remaster with extra tracks)

Savage Amusement is Michael Chapman’s 8th album and was recorded in 1976. Recorded at Sawmills in Cornwall, Tapestry in London and Ardent in Memphis, it finds Chapman’s folk guitar stylings augmented by fellow guitarists Tim Renwick (Al Stewart) and Andy Latimer (Camel) whilst the rhythm section is supplied by drummer Keef Hartley and bassist Rick Kemp (Steeleye Span). Peter Wood (Al Stewart) and Muscle Shoals session player Leo LeBlanc complete the band on keys and pedal steel respectively.
1. Shuffleboat River Farewell - 4:38
2. Secret Of The Locks - 3:58
3. Crocky Hill Disaster - 4:40
4. Lovin' Dove - 3:33 -
5. Hobo's Lament (Meditation) (Jimmie Rodgers) - 3:17 
6. Stranger - 7:37
7. How Can A Poor Man (Blind Alfred Reed) - 2:40
8. It Didn't Work Out - 5:25 
9. Devastation Hotel - 5:20
10.Lovin' Dove - 2:44 
11.Just To Keep You - 3:06 
12.Devastation Hotel/Crocky Hill Disaster Idea - 2:53
13.Waiting For A Train (All Around The Water Tank) (Jimmie Rodgers) - 3:21
All songs by Michael Chapman except where noted
Bonus Tracks 10-13

*Michael Chapman - Guitar, Vocals
*Keef Hartley - Drums
*Rick Kemp - Bass
*Andy Latimer - Guitar
*Leo LeBlanc - Pedal Steel Guitar
*Tim Renwick - Guitar
*Peter Wood - Keyboards
*Mutt, Stevie, Fuzzy - Vocals

1968  Michael Chapman - Rainmaker
1970  Michael Chapman - Fully Qualified Survivor
1970-71  Michael Chapman - Window / Wrecked Again
1973  Michael Chapman - Millstone Grit (2006 remaster)
1974  Michael Chapman - Deal Gone Down (2015 bonus tracks edition)

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Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Fred Neil - Fred Neil (1967 us, superb folk blues psych with raga elements, 2006 remnaster)

From the clatter of the Greenwich Village 60s folk scene came a voice that was inspired, authentic, and extraordinarily deep. Freddy Neil had one of those unmistakable voices, a baritone that could rumble your brain and leave cracks in your spine. Add to that the skills of one of the better blues-folk songwriters; his songs were covered by Karen Dalton, Stephen Stills, David Crosby, Tim Buckley, Harry Nilsson, Jefferson Airplane.

Released in 1967, Fred Neil is moody, soft, and dark, but shimmers in beautiful electric sound. It lives within the pinnacle of styles from which Freddy would draw his influence: Brill Building chops, cold hard blues, good old folk song, and raga spiritualism. The ten original compositions heard here are masterpiece quality pens. “Everybody’s Talkin'” would put the voice of Nilsson forever in popular knowledge thanks to Midnight Cowboy; Fred refused to sing for the movie and his unornamented version is a refreshing listen. Neil harbored a genuine love for dolphins, championing their causes throughout his life, and recording his dreamy ode to open the record. I harbor a specific love for the bluesy standard, “That’s The Bag I’m In” and songs like “Faretheewell (Fred’s Tune)” are too precious for my description.

Neil was a father figure to many integral players in the folk, blues, and rock movements, cited as an influence by folks like David Crosby and Bob Dylan. Go grab this essential LP if it isn’t already in your collection.
by Brendan McGrath
1. The Dolphins - 4:06
2. I've Got A Secret (Didn't We Shake Sugaree) (Elizabeth Cotten) - 4:40
3. That's The Bag I'm In - 3:37
4. Badi-Da - 3:39
5. Faretheewell (Fred's Tune) - 4:03
6. Everybody's Talkin'  - 2:45
7. Everything Happens - 2:20
8. Sweet Cocaine - 2:03
9. Green Rocky Road - 3:40
10.Cynicrustpetefredjohn Raga - 8:16
All compositions by Fred Neil except track #2

*Fred Neil - Acoustic Guitar, Electric, Vocals, Finger Snapping
*Pete Childs - Electric, Acoustic Guitar
*John T. Forsha - Acoustic, 12 String Guitar
*Cyrus Faryar - Acoustic Guitar, Bouzouki
*Rusty Faryar - Finger Cymbals
*Jimmy Bond - Bass
*Billy Mundi - Drums, Cymbals, Tambourine
*Alan Wilson - Harmonica
*Nick Venet - Sound Effects

1964-65  Fred Neil - Tear Down The Walls / Bleecker And MacDougal (2001 release) 

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Monday, October 28, 2019

Twilights - The Way They Played Best Of (1965-69 australia, fine beat folk baroque psych, 2013 remaster)

The migrant hostels of the major Australian cities were the fertile breeding grounds for some of the most vital and seminal rock bands in in the early sixties. At Villawood migrant hostel in suburban Sydney, some young and talented music enthusiasts had recently formed into a group called The Easybeats, and that band's story is among the most compelling as any in Aussie rock History. Meanwhile, over in Elizabeth, north of Adelaide in South Australia, another mob of young guys, like so many youths all over the world, were seduced by the magic of The Beatles' film "A Hard Days' Night". Drawn together by their British origins - similar to the impetus that sparked the Easys' genesis - Glenn Shorrock (hailing originally from Kent, UK), and his friends Mike Sykes and Clem "Paddy" McCartney (although born in Belfast, blessed with a classic albatross of a surname!), formed an a-cappella trio to try out their pop and folk wares, eventually gaining regular bookings around the relatively meagre Adelaide folk/coffee-house circuit.

Occasionally, and especially for more prestige engagements, the vocal three-piece teamed with local instrumental outfits, among them The Vector Men and The Hurricanes. Typical of the era, the latter band began as a Shadows-style instrumental act, but soon caught the Brit-invasion bug. The Twilights and The Hurricans developed a solid bond. It was inevitable that with such strong, enthusiastic, precocious and insistent talents as those of Britten, Shorrock and Brideoake rubbing against each other, the prospect of blending it all together would prove irresistible. Thus, the six-piece, fully electric-and-vocal group as we know and revere them, was born.

Still based in Adelaide, self-managed and produced, the newly-formed band released its debut single, "I'll Be Where You Are" on EMI's Columbia imprint in June 1964. A plaintive, Beatle-esque ballad written by Shorrock and Britten, the single got some airplay in Melbourne but failed to chart outside their hometown Subsequent releases made further inroads -- their second single, "Wanted To Sell", cracked the Melbourne charts and the third, the brisk, Brideoake-Britten original "If She Finds Out" gained them fans in Sydney and Brisbane. The Twilights began to cause a stir with their dynamic live shows in Adelaide, and a 'vibe' quickly built about the band who could knock out note-perfect renditions of the latest hits with ease and could also rock out with wild abandon.

Early in 1965, drummer Frank Barnard (who featured on the first two singles) was replaced by Laurie Pryor. Barnard's wife apparently objected to manager Gary Spry's strict "no girlfriends" touring regime, and so Frank quit. Laurie, a locally-known drumming prodigy who had played with Johnny Broome & the Handles in England, immediately jumped at the offer. The new line-up with Pryor remained in place for the rest of the band's career. After taking over the group's management, Spry's strategy was to establish the group in Australia's pop capital, Melbourne, so The Twilights moved there in late 1965, and rapidly became established as one of the top acts in a city that had no shortage of great bands on offers. 

It was with their classsic fifth single "Needle In A Haystack" that The Twilights achieved national success.Its refrain rang out relentlessly on our 2SM/UW; 3UZ/XY; 4BH/BC (etc) "good guy" radio stations during '66. This superb rendition of the Motown song (originally cut by Martha & The Vandellas) flagged them in no uncertain terms as group to watch The single was a Top 10 in most states and reached the coveted #1 spot on the new Go-Set national chart in October 1966. The Twilights had already made big inroads with their previous single, a rendition of Larry Williams' "Bad Boy" that comprehensively whipped The Beatles' better-known version into a cocked hat. And to consolidate, the funky follow-up single to "Haystack" -- a cover of the Sam Cook classic "You Got Soul", together with a strong first album, confirmed critics' and fans' faith in the band.

On their eponymous debut LP, The Twilights demonstrated their diversity as a recording unit. With a strong mix of self-penned tunes, songs specially written for them (by Barry Gibb of The Bee Gees and Hans Poulsen), and tour-de-force reproductions of their stage favourites, the group's dexterity with a variety of styles was proven. A blistering version of The Yardbirds' "I'm Not Talkin' " (consummately seeing off the original with a welter of Britten guitarobatics) contrasted with the mellow tones of The Who's "La La La Lies", The Moody Blues' "Let Me Go" and the thrilling harmonies of Paddy and Glenn on The Hollies' "Yes I Will". Then, just when you thought it safe, along came a white-hot reading of the Stones' "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" to close the program in a raspy-vocalled feedback freakout! The David MacKay-produced LP showcased the band's strengths, and presented a potent document to take the nascent group into its most exciting era.

The next milestone was a new established national pop competition, The Hoadley's Battle of the Sounds. Established a couple of years earlier by Everybody's magazine as a talent quest for new unsigned bands, the Battle gained greater credibility and attracted many of the nation's finer outfits when, in 1966, confectioner Hoadleys' (best known for their scrumptious Violet Crumble Bar) assumed sponsogsubip, and the recently-launched Go-Set magazine took over the co-ordination role. The stakes were higher too, with first prize being full return passage to England on the Sitmar cruise line, two definite gigs and $1,000 prize money. The subsequent competitions would see such acts as The Groop and The Masters Apprentices taking out the prize, and many other prominent outfits that would go on to greater success competed in the Battle until its conclusion in 1972. But, as in so many other instances, The Twilights were pioneers.

In July 1966, The Twilights took the stage at Festival Hall, Melbourne, before a full house of screaming, streamer-hurling fans, to win the competition ahead of over 500 other hopefuls. They were awarded bonus points for sound, originality, presentation and audience reaction -- qualities the band already had in abundance (they had already taken out the 1965 title in a local Adelaide competition the previous year). The competition's rules set a maximum group membegsubip of five, which meant that Paddy -- half of the band's twin lead vocal line-up -- had to sit out the winning performance. But he returned to the stage for the triumphant encore and was, luckily, included in the victors' spoils. Any listener will thrill to hear what the fuss was all about -- the full performance is contained on the Raven LP Twilight Time. With the prize in hand, for the world music mecca of London for their biggest adventure yet. 
1. If She Finds Out (Peter Brideoake, Terry Britten) - 2:20
2. It's Dark (Peter Brideoake) - 1:54
3. Bad Boy (Larry Williams) - 2:11
4. Baby Let Me Take You Home (Traditional) - 2:25
5. Sorry She's Mine (Kenny Lynch) - 2:34
6. John Hardy (Manfred Mann, Mike Hugg, Mike Vickers, Paul Jones, Tom McGuinness) - 2:03
7. I'm Not Talking (Mose Allison) - 2:24 
8. Needle In A Haystack (Norman Whitfield, William Stevenson) - 2:10   
9. I Won't Be The Same Without Her (Gerry Goffin, Carole King) - 2:44 
10.(I'll Be True To You) Yes I Will (Gerry Goffin, Russ Titelman) - 2:52 
11.You've Got Soul (Margaret Nash) - 2:23 
12.What's Wrong With The Way I Live? (Allan Clarke, Graham Nash, Tony Hicks) - 1:58   
13.9.50 - 2:31 
14.Cathy Come Home - 2:01 
15.Young Girl (Laurie Pryor) - 2:26 
16.Time And Motion Study Man (Parsons, Terry Britten) - 2:13
17.The Way They Play - 2:14
18.Always - 2:37
19.Once Upon A Twilight - 2:25
20.What A Silly Thing To Do - 2:46
21.Paternosta Row - 3:19
22.Comin' On Down - 2:23
23.Lotus - 2:57
24.Bessemae - 3:07
25.Mr. Nice - 2:01
26.Tell Me Goodbye - 2:24
27.2000 Weeks - 2:10
28.Bargain Day - 3:01
All songs by Terry Britten except where stated

*Peter Brideoake - Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
*Terry Britten - Lead Guitar, Vocals
*John Bywaters - Bass
*Clem "Paddy" Mccartney - Lead Vocals
*Glenn Shorrock - Lead Vocals
*Frank Barnard - Drums (1964-65)
*Laurie Pryor - Drums (1965-69)

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Sunday, October 27, 2019

Fred Neil - Tear Down The Walls / Bleecker And MacDougal (1964-65 us, amazing acoustic folk blues, 2001 release)

Fred Neil's first album for Elektra, 1964's Tear Down the Walls, had established him as a folk-blues troubadour unmatched in his appetite for eclecticism. That album had been done as a part of a duo with the more conventional folk singer Vince Martin, their partnership ending before a planned live follow-up LP at the Bitter End in Greenwich Village could be realized. Bleecker and MacDougal, released in May 1965, gave Neil more room to spread his wings. Where half of Tear Down the Walls had been folk covers, now Fred could write virtually all of the material. He could also take all the vocal leads, which he'd only occasionally been able to do on Tear Down the Walls, where he had often harmonized with Martin (who took the occasional lead vocal of his own on that LP).

As on the prior record, session men John Sebastian (on harmonica) and Felix Pappalardi (on bass) would be vital to fleshing out Neil's songs with arrangements unusually deep and powerfully rhythmic for folk albums of the period. On Bleecker and MacDougal, they were augmented by Pete Childs on second guitar and dobro, as well as Douglas Hatelid (the real name of the Modern Folk Quartet's Chip Douglas) on bass. On top of all that, some of the guitar was electric, though applied with sparse dabs. No one may have realized it, but in the process they were helping to forge an entirely new direction in contemporary music, folk-rock.

"The Vince and Fred music was more related to commercial folk music, just by virtue of what you have when you put two singers and two guitarists together," says Sebastian. "Once Fred was sort of on his own on a record, what would naturally come out would be more of the Southern musical hybrid. Whether he was doing it consciously or not, I can't say.

"Whatever we were calling it, it definitely had the qualities of rock'n'roll. But the styles were always just this side of rock'n'roll. He was a great rhythm guitarist, but he had very little inclination to use an electric. I think that was a wise choice, because that twelve-string [had] a certain kind of a propulsion you probably couldn't get out of an electric instrument. He had no objection to anybody playing an electric guitar accompanying him, but there are certainly both acoustic and electric guitarists accompanying him in the various recordings, including the [post-Elektra] Capitol stuff." (Which, incidentally, is found on yet another batch of Neil material reissued by Collectors' Choice, The Many Sides of Fred Neil.)

Neil summoned an extraordinarily strong set of material for Bleecker and MacDougal, rivaled only by his first Capitol album, Fred Neil, in consistently high quality. Fred had by this time perfected the unique persona of the bemused folk-bluesman. His sumptuous low voice sounded as lived-in as an all-night diner on the corner of Bleecker and MacDougal, the epicenter of the Greenwich Village folk scene, where he posed for the cover's memorable nighttime shot. That cover could have been the illustration for the opening lyric of the title cut that kicked off the album, where Neil found himself "standing on the corner of Bleecker and MacDougal, wondering which way to go." Unlike many a bluesman, however, Neil was not so much outraged or discouraged by life's setbacks as cheerily resigned to them. He was just a country boy, it seemed, bending with the hard knocks that a big city such as New York was bound to deliver. Either he could retreat to his woman in Coconut Grove in Southern Florida when the Village got too much, as he did on "Bleecker and MacDougal," or he could find contentment in a more philosophical, psychological space.

Nowhere were those ethos evoked more effectively than in the record's most famous song, "Other Side of This Life." Neil's most famous composition other than "Everybody's Talking," it attracted cover versions by Peter, Paul & Mary, the Lovin' Spoonful, the Youngbloods, and, most famously, the Jefferson Airplane, who made it a centerpiece of their live concerts. Also covered to good effect was the record's most delicate, melodic cut, "Little Bit of Rain," with its watery reverberating guitar. Linda Ronstadt sang it on the 1967 debut album by the Stone Poneys, and it was also recorded, albeit in an unreleased version, by top British folk-rock singer Sandy Denny.

Other highlights of the record included "Blues on the Ceiling," where Neil's blues were at their weariest and most fatalistic, though somehow they never quite made either him or the listener downright depressed. "Candy Man" reworked a song had originally been done as a B-side for Roy Orbison's "Crying," though Orbison managed to get his interpretation into the Top Thirty under its own steam. "Mississippi Train" rocked harder than anything else on what was still for the most part an acoustic record, showing he could convincingly handle uptempo blues as well as the more downbeat folk-blues he usually favored. So did "Country Boy," another tune that reinforced his image as a man ill at ease in the big bad city.

Neil's genre-blending and songwriting were extremely influential on the musicians that were about to break folk-rock wide open, as Sebastian soon did in the Lovin' Spoonful. Sebastian's own composing, he acknowledges, was influenced by "the natural way [Fred] could combine these various styles just by being who he was. It wasn't any kind of an alchemy thing of 'we're gonna pour a little of this, and a little of that.' That was very inspiring. It was also a real lesson in how to let a lyric sound like it just fell out of your mouth, like you hadn't really labored over it. Fred always had that quality about his songs. As a songwriter, at that time [when Sebastian and Neil were playing together], I maybe had written two songs. But I certainly was taking note of how effortless these songs sounded.

"As a matter of fact, in later years, I began to get a little critical about them. And say, 'Jesus Christ, you had this genius two verses, why didn't you write the third verse, for god's sake?' That was the only place that I could actually say I had any influence on Fred. Occasionally I did get up the nerve to say, 'Gee, we're kind of going back to this first verse faster than I really feel like doing it. Couldn't we have another verse, Fred?' That was part of the pincer movement that Felix and I were helping to apply, sort of on Paul Rothchild's behalf." As it turned out it would be the last album that Rothchild and Elektra worked on with Neil, yet one that endures as one the greatest of all New York folk-based singer-songwriter efforts from the 1960s. 
by Richie Unterberger 
1. I Know You Rider (Traditional) - 3:12
2. Red Flowers - 2:37
3. Tear Down The Walls - 2:38
4. Weary Blues (Hank Williams) - 4:16
5. Toy Balloon (Vince Martin) - 1:53
6. Baby - 4:34
7. Morning Dew (Bonnie Dobson) - 4:13
8. I'm A Drifter (Travis Edmonson) - 2:32
9. Linin' Track (Traditional) - 2:41
10.Wild Child In A World Of Trouble - 2:19
11.Dade County Jail - 3:04
12.I Got 'em - 3:09
13.Lonesome Valley (Traditional) - 3:07
14.Bleecker And MacDougal - 2:15
15.Blues On The Ceiling - 2:26
16.Sweet Mama - 2:39
17.Little Bit Of Rain - 2:24
18.Country Boy - 2:29
19.Other Side Of This Life - 2:58
20.Mississippi Train - 2:22
21.Travelin' Shoes - 2:19
22.The Water Is Wide (Traditional) - 4:19
23.Yonder Comes The Blues - 1:53
24.Candy Man - 2:30]
25.Handful Of Gimme - 2:16
26.Gone Again - 3:16
All songs by Fred Neil except where noted
Tracks 1-13 with Vince Martin from LP "Tear Down The Walls" 1964
Tracks 14-26 from LP "Bleecker And MacDougal" 1965

Fred Neil - Guitar, Vocals
Vince Martin - Guitar, Vocals
Felix Pappalardi - Bass, Guitar, Harmonica
John Sebastian - Guitar, Harmonica
Pete Childs - Dobro, Guitar
Douglas Hatlelid - Bass

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Thursday, October 24, 2019

The Bonniwell Music Machine - Ignition (1965-69 us, fascinating garage psych rock)

These recordings represent a contemporaneous diversity of late sixties rock.

"Everything is Everything": This is what the fool on the hill said, but a confused guru once said, "I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous." I was that guru. Advise & Consent stands aside and stares at the enigma of romantic inertia — as derived by an agreement of separation that satisfies no part of its expectations. Not unlike the Clinton administration.

"This Should Make You Happy" refers to producer Brian Ross, and so accommodates commercial clichés of the day it spoofs what never was, bubble gum punk.

"Black Snow" was written an hour after discussing human perceptions of reality with Jose Felliciano, and is meant as a metaphor for what it's like to be blind, physically, and to God.

"Mother Nature/ Father Earth" was recorded a decade before ecology became a term known and used, and its arrangement is due primarily to the talents of then keyboardist, Holly McKinley. God help us if this song becomes an anthem for environmental extremists, we'll all wind up with plastic Christmas trees.

"Dark White" reflects the urgent revisionism of 60's morality: If it moves, fondle it. The blame for this song can be placed squarely on the shoulders of Tarzan, the ape man. This was the only book my father ever read to me. Why he chose the Edgar Rice Burroughs classic is known only to Gloria Steinman, whose next act of feminism will be to have a rib removed. It didn't matter that I couldn't understand how a boy could be raised by apes. I figured if running around in a loin cloth and beating your chest was good enough for Cheetah then it was good enough for Jane. That seemed to be the problem. My father would skip portions of the text referring to any maneuvers leading to seduction. For a long time I believed the Stork delivered Tarzan in diapers, and that he just never got around to taking them off...

Just when you think the Machine's impetuous ignition into pop R&B has run out of gas, "Smoke & Water" shifts gears, and a white man sings the blues without once using the 7th of the chords. At best it can be said of the lyrics that the author was stoned. What makes them worse than they are is that he wasn't.

"Smoke" is a rehearsal song, authored as a means to set sound levels for recording. The lead guitar is a curious mixture; Ravi Shankar practices punk twang. But Mark always played with affectionate wonder — regardless of the genre, which is all the more remarkable when, in "Point of No Return," he was called upon to reveal the source of its deepest agony.
Slam Shift

Four songs written specifically for the Music Machine before the group was named. Soon to be known as the Ragamuffins, the trio featured Ron Edgar on drums, Keith Olsen, bass, and writer, Sean Bonniwell, guitar and vocals:

Two Much: The lyrics are chauvinistically delicious, but equal to a car in the race so far behind it eems to be first.

The romantic advice in "Push Don't Pull" is prematurely politically correct as well. As a tactic to persuade full grown women, it's an exercise in futility. It doesn't work on small daughters either. I regard these three songs as born from primal 60's melodies, however, it wouldn't be amiss to assume that "Talk Me Down" points to the future with the same middle finger accused of writing "Talk Talk," and because each song has elements indispensable to its conception they should be regarded as the true birth babies of the Music Machine.

Then there's the thoughtful premonitions in "Chances": Decorated with intonations common to the folk climate of the early 60's, "Chances" approximates the panache of British ballads — ala Gerry & The Pacemakers — but the transferal of that common instrumentation to "militant folk" included a 12 string acoustic lead answered by a punk slam to the brain, an electric lead with sonic distortion that will break your toilet bowl.

All this occurs in "Point of No Return." Featured as "Ignition's" true finale, "Point" is a mixture of folk rock and punk blues, the first of its kind. That the Music Machine invented alternative rock is still open to question. The birth wail of power rock born punk — emanating from the band's garage, is not. Perhaps such a destiny is inevitable for a songwriter who began his career playing trumpet (the photo above appeared on the cover of Down Beat magazine in 1943). For one now known as the grandfather of punk by disciples of the garage, it's not likely that such a misnomer will be validated until he dies from inhaling exhaust.
by Sean Bonniwell
1. Everything Is Everything (Sean Bonniwell, Harry Garfield) - 1:52
2. Two Much - 2:02
3. Advise And Consent - 2:58
4. This Should Make You Happy - 1:53
5. Black Snow - 2:30
6. Chances - 3:07
7. Mother Nature, Father Earth - 2:14
8. Talk Me Down - 1:48
9. Dark White - 4:13
10.Push Don't Pull - 2:15
11.Smoke And Water - 3:19
12.King Mixer - 2:43
13.Unca Tinka Ty - 2:04
14.Citizen Fear - 2:28
15.Worry (Sean Bonniwell, Paul Buff) - 2:11
16.Worry (Alternate Version) - 2:15
17.Tell Me What Ya Got - 2:06
18.Point Of No Return - 2:40
19.902 (Sean Bonniwell, Harry Garfield) - 1:57
All songs by Sean Bonniwell except where noted
Tracks 6, 8, 10 as The Ragamuffins

*Sean Bonniwell - Rhythm Guitar , Horn, Vocals
*Ron Edgar - Drums (The Ragamuffins 1965-66, Music Machine 1966-67)
*Keith Olsen - Bass, Vocals (The Ragamuffins 1965-66, Music Machine 1966-67)
*Doug Rhodes - Bass, Flute, Horn, Organ, Tambourine, Vocals (Music Machine 1966-67)
*Mark Landon - Guitar (Music Machine 1966-67)
*Ron Edgar - Drums (Music Machine 1966-67)
*Harry Garfield - Organ (Music Machine 1967-68)
*Jerry Harris – Drums (Music Machine 1967-68)
*Eddie Jones - Bass (Music Machine 1967-68)
*Guile Wisdom - Lead Guitar (Music Machine 1967-68)

1966-67  The Music Machine - The Ultimate Turn On (2006 two disc set with unissued material) 
1968-69  The Music Machine - The Bonniwell Music Machine (2014 double disc edition)
Related Act
1969  .S. Bonniwell - Close (2012 digi pak edition) 

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Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Avalanche - Perseverance Kills Our Game (1979 holland, essential electric folk jazz rock, 2014 remaster)

Dutch band Avalanche formed in the early '70s and recorded Perseverance Kills Our Game, their only album, in 1979, completed in just a day,recorded essentially live and unedited and released as a private edition of 500 copies. The group’s sound had been gestating since the early 70s where, in truth, it remained: mellow electric folk-rock with period flute, piano, a decent jazzy rhythm section – and all instrumental recordings, bar one vocal track. Standout musician is guitarist Daan Slaman, who saves the best till last: the 11-minute Oblivion, on which, after a gentle acoustic guitar/flute intro, the slow-burning album finally ignites in a compelling, fluid, sustained guitar crescendo that’s more Dave Gilmore than Richard Thompson. Enjoyable and highly engaging.
by Mick Houghton 
1. Lodalientje - 3:55
2. Cola-Tik - 2:47
3. Hymn On Wind And Water - 5:17
4. Maiden Voyage - 6:56
5. Gimmick For 20 Fingers - 1:18
6. Transcendence For Leo) - 7:11
7. Images Of Long Gone By - 2:29
8. Oblivion - 11:14
All compositions by Avalanche, Track #4 Lyrics by Fred Dekker

*Rob Dekker - Keyboards
*Daan Slaman - Guitar
*Jan Blom - Vocals, Mandolin, Guitar, Bass
*Marcella Neeleman - Flute
*Fred Dekker - Bass Guitar
*Johan Spek - Drums

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Monday, October 21, 2019

Blues Dimension - B.D. Is Dead, Long Live B.D. (1969 holland, splendid jazz blues psych brass rock, 2014 remaster)

One of the most underrated Nederpop bands from the 60s was the Zwolle band Blues Dimension . A unique band because they were one of the first to join a brass section. Originally the band played rhythm ‘n’ blues but their influence widened from psych and jazzy tunes.

In the three years of existing, members changed. At the time of they third and last album “B.D. Is Dead, Long Live B.D.” in 1969, band consisted of saxophonist Rudy van Dijk, drummer Herman van Boeijen, bassist Jaap van Eik, singer Leen Ripke, keyboardist Helmig van der Vegt, bassist Herman Deinum, guitarist Cees de Best and trumpet player Michel Sardoen .

The album opens with the beat ballad Stay with flowing organ and piano playing by van der Vegt. What is particularly striking in this song is how underrated guitarist Cees de Best is. His beautiful game is very reminiscent of Eelco Gelling's. Singer Leen Ripke also appears to be an excellent bluesy singer. The role of the blazers is meager because they are added at the end of the song. The wind instruments can hardly be heard on this album.

Battlefield Of Love was the last single from the band and did not get much of sales, even so this ballad can still be counted as one of the pearls of the Nederpop,. vory Tower Of Utopia is also a psychedelic ballad with a bluesy touch by the vocals of Ripke.

Supernatural Powers is an up-tempo funky blues rocker with excellent bass from Deinum and bluesy piano. In the cover of Willie Dixon's I Ain't Superstitious  you can hear the pure blues side of Blues Dimension. Here again the Muskee-like vocals of Ripke stand out. Society's Child is also a cover by Janis Ian, a psychedelic funky song.

The title track “BD Is Dead, Long Live BD” is  an instrumental song. This jazzy song focuses on saxophonist Rudy van Dijk. The cover of the Yardbirds song Shapes Of Things sounds like it is being sung by Rod Stewart. In the blues rocker Cornflakes, the driving bass from Vaninum and guitarist Cees de Best steal the lead roles. Final song of the album, is the up-tempo psych pop “Drift Into Space”.
by Peter Marinus
1. Stay (Helmig K. Van Der Vegt, Leendert Ripke) - 3:30
2. Battle-Field Of Love (Helmig K. Van Der Vegt, Rudy Van Dijk, Leendert Ripke) - 4:43
3. Ivory Tower Of Utopia (Jaap Van Eik, Leendert Ripke) - 3:12
4. Supernational Powers (Helmig K. Van Der Vegt, Leendert Ripke) - 2:41
5. I Ain't Superstitious (Willie Dixon) - 4:45
6. Society's Child (Janis Ian) - 4:50
7. B.D. Is Dead, Long Live B.D. (Jaap Van Eik, Leendert Ripke) - 3:35
8. Shapes Of Things (Jim McCarty, Keith Relf, Paul Samwell-Smith) - 4:40
9. Cornflakes (Helmig K. Van Der Vegt, Leendert Ripke) - 3:48
10.Drift Into Space (Helmig K. Van Der Vegt, Leendert Ripke) - 2:27

Blues Dimension
*Cees de Best - Guitar
*Herman van Boeyen - Drums
*Helmig van der Vegt - Keyboards
*Jaap van Eik - Bass
*Leen Ripke - Vocals
*Michel Sardoen - Trumpet
*Rudy van Dijk - Saxophone
*Herman Deinum - Bass

1968-69 Blues Dimension - Blues Dimension (2014 remaster)

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Sunday, October 20, 2019

Shotgun - Dallasian Rock (1974-76 us, straight up rock and roll hard edged boogie rhythms with guitar flash, 2014 remaster)

Have a soft spot for vintage Doobie Brothers, Foghat, James Gang, Cactus, and Grand Funk Railroad? Can't get enough blistering lead guitar work, instantly memorable choruses, and grooves that just get stuck in your head for hours on end? Then wait till you get a load of Dallasian Rock, a collection of recordings from little known Texas act Shotgun. The folks at ShroomAngel Records have painstakingly remastered a full 1976 recording session, as well as a host of demo & live bonus tracks, to give this exceptional band the 'offical release' they never had. Though Shotgun proved to be a popular act on the Dallas-Fort Worth club circuit, mainstream success evaded them, and after listening to Dallasian Rock you'll wonder just how the hell that ever happened. This is incredible material that should have been huge back in the day, and the amazing thing is it still sounds fresh and exciting here in 2014. The ShroomAngel team have done a wonderful job on the remastering, so be prepared for a killer listening experience.

Shotgun were Guy Houston on drums, Hugh Coleman on bass, John Michael Soria on lead guitar, Russ Skarsten on keyboards, and Billy Metcalf on lead vocals. Though they only had a run of a few years, it sounds here like a band that had been together for much longer, a well oiled machine that is firing on all cylinders. Two energetic heavy boogie numbers kick things off, "Rock Star Queen" and "In the Music", each one full of hooks and addicting grooves. "Seems Like You Would Understand" wouldn't have sounded out of place on an old James Gang album, with Metcalf's vocals falling somewhere in between Tom Johnston of the Doobie Brothers, Grand Funk's Mark Farner, and Joe Walsh. Lots of hard rock/funk guitar licks, tasty keyboards, and tricky rhythms on this one. "Play The Game" again has that early '70s Doobies sound down quite well, the funky keyboards and heavy riffs supporting those soaring vocals quite nicely. 

The atmospheric rocker "Last Night" is another catchy piece, again reminding of Walsh era James Gang, while the raunchy "Mercy" ups the hard rock ante, complete with sizzling licks from Soria. There's more of an atmospheric blues feel to "Feelin' Good", but I love how the band throw in these wonderful vocal harmonies that almost come from a different planet (reminds of Styx) to add plenty of uniqueness to the song. "Straight Out" again takes us down James Gang avenue, this time the Tommy Bolin era, and you could actually say there are some Deep Purple Come Taste the Band styled flavors going on here as well thanks to the swirling keyboards, bluesy vocals, and stinging guitar licks. A fine, fine song. "Keep A Steady High" is straight forward, hard rockin' boogie, and the title track is a just a solid example of catchy, '70s hard rock & boogie, a tune with a great hook that should have seen radio play back in the day. The regular part of the album ends with the moody, almost prog-meets-Southern Rock track "Leavin' On A Train", as atmospheric & melodic musical passages mix with scorching slide guitar and heavy riffs, Metcalf again impressive with some powerful vocals. If you love those blazing slide guitar runs of the late Rod Price of Foghat, check this tune out. I have to mention again the great sound quality of these songs-a killer job was done on the remastering here.

That takes us over to the wealth of bonus material included on Dallasian Rock. Most of the demo tracks were recorded in 1974, and feature earlier songs that are no less spectacular in reality, probably more in the Southern Rock & Boogie vein but the talents of the band still shine through. "We Are the Stars" has a certain Foghat or Lynyrd Skynyrd flair to it, and "You Won't See Me Again" again ups the boogie ante, with driving riffs and organ really moving this upbeat piece. Mournful slide guitar and a rootsy vibe permeate the Southern Rock styled "Cold Sunday" (lots of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Allman Brothers Band, and Marshall Tucker Band elements here), while the heavy rocking, guitar/organ barn burner ""I Never Wanted You to Know" is a must hear for all the Deep Purple and Uriah Heep lovers out there. 

The band dives into prog rock on the dreamy "The Way It's Supposed To Be", as lovely keyboard textures from Skarsten and some tasty Carlos Santana/Mick Taylor styled lead guitar work from Soria just infiltrate your brain. A great song. "Silver Bullets" is another Purple/Heep influenced heavy rocker featuring big guitar & organ riffs...this is early '70s heavy rock baby! The few live tracks are also quite good, with "I Know What You're Saying" being another great early song, a groove laden Grand Funk Railroad styled thumper that sees Soria delivering some scalding riffs & solos. A few of the other tunes are also pulled off spectacularly by the band, showing that their intricate songs transferred quite nicely to the stage as well.

It's also available on LP as well (minus the bonus tracks), so pick your choice, but either way this is astounding stuff from a band that, quite frankly, should have been a household name back in the '70s. 
by Pete Pardo
1. Rock Star Queen (John Michael Soria) - 3:09
2. In The Music (Guy Houston, John Michael Soria) - 4:13
3. Seems Like You Would Understand (John Michael Soria) - 2:38
4. Play The Game (John Michael Soria) - 3:30
5. Last Nite (John Michael Soria) - 3:04
6. Mercy (John Michael Soria) - 4:05
7. Feelin' Good (John Michael Soria) - 3:48
8. Straight Out (Guy Houston, John Michael Soria) - 4:19
9. Keep A Steady High (Guy Houston, John Michael Soria) - 2:17
10.Dallasian Rock (John Michael Soria) - 3:38
11.Leavin' On A Train (John Michael Soria) - 3:58
12.We Are The Stars (John Michael Soria) - 2:27
13.You Won't See Me Again (Guy Houston, John Michael Soria) - 2:43
14.Cold Sunday (Guy Houston) - 3:22
15.I Never Wanted You To Know (Guy Houston) - 3:09
16.The Way It's Supposed To Be (Guy Houston, Russ Skarsten) - 4:19
17.Keep A Steady High (Guy Houston, John Michael Soria) - 2:35
18.Silver Bullets (Hugh Coleman) - 3:44
19.I Know What You're Sayin' (Guy Houston, John Michael) - 4:23
20.The Way It's Supposed To Be (Guy Houston, John Michael Soria) - 4:31
21.Silver Bullets (Hugh Coleman) - 4:27
22.Leavin' On A Train (John Michael Soria) - 4:24
Bonus Tracks 12-22
Tracks 12-18 1974 4 Track Demos
Track 19 Live KZEW FM 1976
Tracks 20-22 Live AWHQ 1976

*Guy Houst - Drums
*Hugh Coleman - Bass
*John Michael Soria - Lead Guitar
*Russ Skarsten - Keys
*Billy Metcalf - Lead Vocals

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Friday, October 18, 2019

Think - We'll Give You A Buzz (1976 new zealand, elegant melodic prog rock, 2008 digipak remaster)

Prog rock band Think were the first New Zealand act signed to WEA, releasing We’ll Give You A Buzz on Atlantic in 1976. Phil Whitehead and Don Mills came from the disbanded Beam, with Phil actually having had a short stint with Human Instinct in-between. They produced an album in 1976 called "We'll Give You A Buzz" and a single "Arrived In Time"/"Big Ladies" the following year. One further single came in 1979 with "Good Morning"/"Peanut Joe". After struggling in Australia through 1977 they found themselves in the offices of Mushroom Records, being given assurances they would be a priority act if they could just hold on a bit longer.

They couldn’t, but as a revamped version of the band was grinding to a halt back in New Zealand at the end of 1979, their original guitarist Kevin Stanton, the man who had come up with the Think vision, was riding high in the Australian charts with his new band Mi-Sex and a collection of songs he’d written in reaction to his unsavoury departure from Think.
1. Light Title 4:09
2. Look What I've Done 8:33
3. Rippoff 5:34
4. Stringless Provider 10:25
5. Big Ladies 4:01
6. Our Children (Think About) 6:28
All songs written by Alan Badger, Neville Jess, Don Mills, Phil Whitehead

*Alan Badger - Bass
*Neville Jess - Drums
*Don Mills - Keyboards
*Ritchie Pickett - Vocals
*Phil Whitehead - Guitar

Related Act
1975  Human Instinct - Peg Leg / The Lost Tapes 

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Thursday, October 17, 2019

H.P. Lovecraft - Live May 11 (1968 us, trippy killer acid psych rock)

Blessed with one of the best live recording qualities one can hear from '60s efforts -- especially considering that H.P. Lovecraft was never a major success -- Live May 11, 1968 provides a reasonable alternate way for the curious to find out what the shouting was all about. Split almost evenly between first and second album material, and featuring then-new bassist Jeff Boyan (brought in to replace Jerry McGeorge), this release shows that the quintet certainly had something. If there are plenty of moments where the addictive blend of garage jamming and mindblown psychedelia seems on the verge of collapsing into noodling or bad Doors imitations, there's enough of H.P. Lovecraft's own particular approach to justify a listen by anyone into exploratory late-'60s rock. 

Certainly once or twice the band ends up sounding remarkably prescient -- the opening of "Wayfaring Stranger" calls to mind the blend of propulsion and trance Can would shortly make its own in Germany, with Tegza's tight beats leading the way. Plenty of other examples can be noted, with the transferred tape itself further suggesting the European group's approach -- check the midsection of "The Drifter," where only Michaels' keyboards steer away from the driving rhythm. Edwards and Michaels' lead vocals work great together live -- their training and earlier studio experience showing well -- and the whole band tackles the spirit of the times to a T. Two standout performances are the one-two punch of "The White Ship" and "At the Mountain of Madness," both of which also make for the perfect tribute to the original Lovecraft himself. Occasional introductory comments surface from Edwards, but otherwise the five just get it all together and take off -- and do so quite well.
by Ned Raggett
1. Wayfaring Stranger (Traditional) - 10:24
2. The Drifter (Tim Edmundson) - 8:24
3. It's About Time (Terry Callier) - 4:55
4. The White Ship (George Edwards, Dave Michaels, Tony Cavallari) - 7:02
5. At The Mountains Of Madness (George Edwards, Dave Michaels, Tony Cavallari) - 4:33
6. That's The Bag I'm In (Fred Neil) - 3:35
7. I've Been Wrong Before (Randy Newman) - 2:54
8. Country Boy And Bleeker Street (Fred Neil) - 3:46

H.P. Lovecraft
*George Edwards - Vocals, Guitar
*Dave Michaels - Vocals, Organ
*Jeffery Boyan - Bass, Vocals
*Tony Cavallari - Lead Guitar, Vocals
*Michael Tegza - Drums

1967-68  H.P. Lovecraft - Dreams In The Witch House (2005 remastered and expanded) 

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Wednesday, October 16, 2019

H.P. Lovecraft - Dreams In The Witch House (1967-68 us, worderful folk psych rock with baroque tinges, 2005 remastered and expanded)

Nearly 40 years after H.P. Lovecraft's brief heyday, its two albums, H.P. Lovecraft and H.P. Lovecraft II, are combined on this release, with British reissue label Rev-Ola licensing the contents of the original LPs and some singles tracks from the Universal Music Group, which controls the catalog of Philips Records, the Mercury Records subsidiary that issued them initially. The Chicago-based psychedelic rock group was formed in the spring of 1967, releasing H.P. Lovecraft that November, and broke up around the time that H.P. Lovecraft II appeared in September 1968. The band is remembered fondly by many as a "could have been" success that just didn't happen. As heard on these discs, its music is very much in the style of the San Francisco rock of the period, particularly the exploratory folk-rock of Jefferson Airplane, and the double-vocal style of guitarist George Edwards and organist Dave Michaels is particularly suggestive of the combination of Marty Balin and Grace Slick, while the two groups even share some repertoire "Let's Get Together," "High Flying Bird". 

But H.P. Lovecraft also sounds a bit like Quicksilver Messenger Service and It's a Beautiful Day, San Francisco rock groups that, to be fair, it preceded into record stores. A big influence is folk-blues performer Fred Neil, two of whose songs appeared on H.P. Lovecraft, with other songs, notably "Mobius Strip" on H.P. Lovecraft II, sounding like his languid style. The first album remains the keeper, especially because of "The White Ship," the six-and-a-half-minute tribute to the horror writer whose name the band adopted for its own. (Among the bonus tracks is a three-minute single edit of the song.) The rushed second album is, if anything, a bit more psychedelic, but certainly more padded than its predecessor, with even new bassist Jeff Boyan (who replaced the first album's Jerry McGeorge) getting to contribute a song, "Blue Jack of Diamonds." And then Michaels quit and the group broke up, though the name resurfaced for later projects featuring different members. 

The two LPs remain tantalizing evidence of a potentially important psychedelic act of the ‘60s that couldn't hold together. They have been reissued before, but this version is notable for the thorough liner notes by Nick Warburton and for the inclusion of the non-LP single "Anyway That You Want Me"/"It's All Over for You," which actually preceded the formation of the group proper, featuring Edwards, Michaels, and members of the local Chicago band the Rovin' Kind. The single is reminiscent of the Dylan-ish sound of 1965 folk-rock even though it was recorded in February 1967. 
by William Ruhlmann
1. Wayfaring Stranger (Traditional) - 2:39
2. Let's Get Together (Chet Powers) - 4:38
3. I've Been Wrong Before (Randy Newman) - 2:47
4. Drifter (Travis Edmonson) - 4:14
5. That's The Bag I'm In (Fred Neil) - 1:46
6. White Ship (George Edwards, Dave Michaels, Tony Cavallari) - 6:35
7. Country Boy And Bleeker Street (Fred Neil) - 2:38
8. Time Machine (George Edwards, Dave Michaels) - 2:08
9. That's How Much I Love You Baby (More Or Less) (George Edwards, Dave Michaels, Tony Cavallari) - 3:57
10.Gloria Patria (Traditional) - 0:30
11.Spin, Spin, Spin (Kent Foreman) - 3:23
12.It's About Time (Kent Foreman, Lydia Wood) - 5:19
13.Blue Jack Of Diamonds (Jeff Boyan) - 3:08
14.Electrollentando (George Edwards) - 6:36
15.At The Mountains Of Madness (George Edwards, Dave Michaels, Tony Cavallari) - 4:59
16.Mobius Trip (George Edwards) - 2:44
17.High Flying Bird (Billy Ed Wheeler) - 3:24
18.Nothing's Boy (Ken Nordine) - 0:42
19.Keeper Of The Keys (Mike Brewer, Tom Shipley) - 3:08
20.Anyway That You Want Me (Chip Taylor) - 2:40
21.It's All Over For You (Lovecraft) - 2:37
22.White Ship (Single Edit) (George Edwards, Dave Michaels, Tony Cavallari) - 2:55
23.Keeper Of The Keys (Single Mix) (Mike Brewer, Tom Shipley) - 2:56
Tracks 1-10 from LP "H.P. Lovecraft" 1967
Tracks 11-19 from LP "H.P. Lovecraft II" 1968
Bonus Tracks 20-23

H. P. Lovecraft
*George Edwards – Vocals, Acoustic, Electric Guitar, Guitarrón, Bass
*Dave Michaels – Vocals, Organ, Piano, Harpsichord, Clarinet, Recorder
*Tony Cavallari – Lead Guitar, Vocals
*Michael Tegza – Drums, Percussion, Timpani, Vocals
*Jerry McGeorge – Bass, Vocals (Tracks 1-10)
*Jeff Boyan – Bass, Vocals (Tracks 11-19)
Additional Musicians (Tracks 1-10)
*Bill Traut – Bells, Percussion
*Len Druss – Piccolo Flute, English Horn, Saxophones
*Jack Henningbaum, Paul Tervelt – French Horn
*Bill Traub – Reeds
*Herb Weiss, Ralph Craig – Trombone
*Clyde Bachand – Tuba
*Eddie Higgins – Vibraphone, Horn Arrangements

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Monday, October 14, 2019

Mad Dog - 617 (1977 us, heavy power blues with smoking leads and a punkish sludge sound, 2005 remaster)

Formed in Bay City, Michigan, in the early 1970s, the power trio Mad Dog developed its unique style of hard rock in the basement of a family home and later in a rented warehouse near the banks of the Saginaw River. Although their only vinyl release was an independently released album, the band played its original material regularly at clubs, bars, road houses, high school dances, and festivals for a decade before finally disbanding. 

The Charlebois brothers, Joe (1954) and Bob (1957) were born at Mercy Hospital in Bay City, the very same hospital where singing star Madonna was born in 1958. The brothers grew up in the Banks area on the city’s West Side. Although their parents did not play musical instruments, they listened to records of popular singers like Frank Sinatra, so there was always music around the Charlebois house. 

Mad Dog’s heyday was during the time when 18-year-olds could drink legally. On January 1, 1972, Michigan had passed the law to align the legal drinking age with the new voting age law. The band played a lot of original materials during their performances, the idea being that they weren’t going to get very far just playing covers. It was a ballsy move since most bar owners preferred bands that played covers of the hits of the day. The strategy seemed to work for Mad Dog, however, and they were soon making twice as much money playing in bars as they could make working in a factory. They started out renting trucks to bring their equipment to gigs, but when the price of gas rose dramatically, they purchased a new Chevy van and trailer.

Bob and Don went to New York after it was completed to shop the recording to major labels in an attempt to attract interest. With the album in hand, they plotted out the companies they wanted to visit, including Atlantic Records and Led Zeppelin’s Swan Song imprint, but they were unsuccessful in getting a deal.

Their hopes dashed, the band ended up forming its own label, Fish Head, and releasing the “617” album independently in 1977. They also came up with a unique plan after Joe got ahold of a copy of Broadcasting Yearbook, which listed all of the Album-Oriented Rock stations across the country as well as Canada and even the Caribbean. The band sent out 500 copies of the album to the AOR stations in the hope that it would garner airplay.

It was a gutsy move, but the considerable investment was only semi-successful as the album was picked up and added to the playlists of numerous college radio stations but none of the big commercial stations. The “617” LP ended up being most important as something they could sell at gigs and use to promote the band.
1. Goodnight - 3:46
2. Cold Steel - 6:02
3. Detroit Rambler - 6:22
4. Strange - 6:11
5. We'll Try - 2:05
6. Can You See - 8:34
7. Morroco - 4:48
8. Climbing - 5:20
All songs by Robert Charlebois, Joe Charlebois, Don Langenburg

Mad Dog
*Robert Charlebois - Lead Vocals, Guitar, Piano, Harp, Sax
*Joe Charlebois - Drums, Backing Vocals
*Don Langenburg - Bass

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Saturday, October 12, 2019

Tongue - Keep On Truckin´ With Tounge (1969 us, rough blues psych rock, 2000 expanded issue)

Founded in 1967 at the University of Wisconsin-Stout by singer/guitarist Paul Rabbitt and bass player Bob ‘Hippie’ Collins, the group was originally known as the Tennis Shoe Tongue Band. … (The band) quickly became student body favorites for its blues-based hard rock sound and ferocious live shows. …

“Tongue toured extensively with another Wisconsin band, Soup, and opened shows for many headliners on the Midwest concert circuit. Tongue toured with the Cleveland-based rock band James Gang, featuring Joe Walsh, and played with Chuck Berry, Cheap Trick, Michigan’s own Ted Nugent and Alice Cooper. … After gigging around the Midwest for a decade, the Tongue called it quits in 1976.
by Steve Seymour
1. Homely Man Blues (Paul Rabbitt) - 3:44
2. Get Your Shit Together (Paul Rabbitt) - 2:28
3. The Earth Song (Paul Rabbitt, Bob Collins) - 7:00
4. The Prophet (Paul Rabbitt) - 3:45
5. Sidewalk Celebration (Paul Rabbitt) - 3:13
6. Slap Her Down Again Paw (Alice Cornett, Eddie Asherman, Polly Arnold) - 0:26
7. Every Time (Mick Larson, Paul Rabbitt) - 3:02
8. Get Down (Dick Webber, Paul Rabbitt, Bob Collins, Mick Larson) - 3:00
9. Morning Dew (Bonnie Dobson) - 7:29
10.Jazz On The Rag (Paul Rabbitt) - 2:39
11.Keep On Truckin' (Donovan Leitch) - 3:20
12.Hashish (Paul Rabbitt) - 0:04
13.Stained Glass Window (Paul Rabbitt) - 4:43
14.Hey Hey Moma (Paul Rabbitt, Mick Larson, Bob Collins) - 2:13
Bonus Tracks 13-14

*Bob "Hippie" Collins - Bass, Vocals
*Paul Rabbitt - Vocals, Guitar
*Mick Larson - Keyboards
*Dick Webber - Drums

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Friday, October 11, 2019

Pacific Gas And Electric - P G & E (1971 us, remarkable funky blues rock, 2007 reissue)

A really strong set with great rock & soul groove in the best style of some of the other Bay Area crossover groups from the time! The line up here is augmented by some positively soaring backing chorus vocals credited to the Blackberries – a nice counterpoint to the grittier lead vocals of Charlie Allen. The tunes range from an emotive rock & soul vibe to more of a chugging rock groove. Overall it's got some heavy guitar with good wah-wah moments, rock-oriented vocals with a soulful sound! Tracks "When The Sun Shines", "See The Monkey Run", "Short Dogs & Englishmen", "Recall", "Death Row #172", and "The Time Has Come (To Make Your Piece)" and more.
1. Rock And Roller's Lament (Charlie Allen) - 3:15
2. Recall (Charlie Allen, Frank Petricca) - 4:24
3. One More River To Cross (Daniel Moore) - 2:42
4. Death Row #172 (Charlie Allen, Frank Cook, John Hill) - 5:33
5. Short Dogs And Englishmen (Charlie Allen) - 6:30
6. See The Monkey Run (Steve Beckmeier) - 2:34
7. The Time Has Come (To Make Your Peace) (Ron Woods) - 3:14
8. Thank God For You Baby (Charlie Allen, John Hill) - 6:54
9. When The Sun Shines (Ken Utterback) - 4:10

Pacific Gas And Electric
*Ken Utterback - Lead Guitar
*Frank Petricca - Bass
*Jerry Aiello - Organ
*Ron Woods - Drums
*Joe Lala - Conga, Timbales
*Alfred Gallegos -Tenor Sax
*Virgil Gonsalves - Baritone Sax
*Stanley Abernathy - Trumpet
*Charlie Allen - Vocals
*The Blackberries - Background Vocals

more Gas
1968  Pacific Gas And Electric - Get It On / The Kent Records Sessions (2009 extra tracks remaster) 
1969-70  Pacific Gas And Electric / Are You ready
1970  Live 'N' Kicking At Lexington

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Thursday, October 10, 2019

Ten Years After - The Cap Ferrat Sessions (1972 uk, superb classic blues rock, 2017 remaster part of a 10 disc box set)

The Cap Ferrat Sessions – exists thanks to Alvin Lee’s wife, who discovered a box of recordings in their house in Spain. Chris Kimsey recorded and engineered these tracks originally (they formed part of the Rock N Roll Music To The World sessions) which is why Chrysalis Records turned to him to mix them for the first time. Cap Ferrat is in the South of France, situated between Nice and Monaco.

Kimsey has set the record straight in terms of the quality of these newly-found tracks: “Alvin and the band were incredibly creative and abundant during this period. These re-discovered recordings were not rough demos, not rehearsals, but completed masters that did not make the album due to the time limitations of vinyl at the time. So these gems were left off. Mixing this in 2017 I began to study the parts, the playing, the response of each musician. It was amazing! It is what all great recordings are made of.”
by Paul Sinclair

The Cap Ferrat Sessions, which contains five tracks laid down in 1972 – but were later forgotten.

Drummer Ric Lee says: “We recorded in the south of France using the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio, in a villa in Cap Ferrat.

“Each of the instruments were recorded in a different room – the drums were in the ballroom. Between our engineer, Chris Kimsey, and me, we managed to get one of the best drum sounds on any Ten Years After recording.

“The tracks were originally planned for the Rock & Roll Music To The World album, but due to vinyl restrictions of the time, they weren’t included.”

Kimsey was 21 years old when he first worked on the Cap Ferrat tracks – but 45 years later, and with a career that includes collaborations with the Stones, Bad Company and Peter Frampton among his credits, he went back to work on them.

“Alvin and the band were incredibly creative and abundant during that period,” Kimsey says. “These rediscovered recordings were not rough demos or rehearsals, but completed masters that did not make the album.

“Mixing this in 2017 I began to study the parts, the playing, the response of each musician. It was amazing – it’s what all great recordings are made of.”
by Martin Kielty
1. Look At Yourself - 4:20
2. Running Around - 5:34
3. Holy Shit - 3:01
4. There's A Feeling - 3:32
5. I Hear You Calling My Name - 11:11
All songs by Alvin Lee

Ten Years After
*Alvin Lee - Guitar, Vocals
*Leo Lyons - Bass
*Ric Lee - Drums
*Chick Churchill - Organ

Related Acts
1973-74  Alvin Lee And Mylon Lefevre - On The Road To Freedom
1974  Alvin Lee - In Flight 
2012  Alvin Lee - Still on the Road to Freedom

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Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Rare Earth - Willie Remembers (1972 us, exceptional groovy classic rock, 2017 audiophile remaster)

Rare Earth's “Willie Remembers” (again co-produced by Baird and the band) hit the charts on 25 November 1972, peaking at a disappointing #90 while charting for 20 weeks.  Michael Urso (bass and vocals) replaced original member John Persh.  For the first time, the band put out an album of almost entirely original material.  Unfortunately, the album did not sell, despite having many good moments.  The album had two singles “Good Time Sally” and “We’re Gonna Have A Real Good Time” but neither sold well, topping out at #67 and #93 respectively.  

The band’s fortunes were fading.  Fortunately for collectors both single edits are included on “Anthology” and serve notice that although the band’s singles were no longer top 10 or even top 20 smashes, they were certainly worthy efforts.  But the times had changed.  Music headed in a more progressive direction, and the band’s brand of psychedelic rhythm and blues turned breezy, good time music waned in favor. Motown thought it was ‘too white’ and refused to promote it. 
by Kevin Rathert
1. Good Time Sally (Tom Baird) - 2:53
2. Every Now And Then We Get To Go On Down To Miami (Dino Fekaris, Nick Zesses) - 3:11
3. Think Of The Children (Ray Monette, Mark Olson, Pete Rivera) - 5:36
4. Gotta Get Myself Back Home - 3:02
5. Come With Your Lady - 5:47
6. Would You Like To Come Along - 2:48
7. We're Gonna Have A Good Time - 3:25
8. I Couldn't Believe What Happened Last Night - 12:29
All sons by Gil Bridges, Eddie Guzman, Ray Monette, Mark Olson, Pete Rivera except where noted

Rare Earth
*Pete Hoorelbeke – Drums, Percussion, Lead Vocal
*Gil Bridges – Woodwinds, Percussion, Vocal
*Mike Urso – Bass Guitar, Vocal
*Ray Monette – Lead Guitar
*Mark Olson – Keyboard, Vocal
*Ed Guzman – Congas, Percussion

1968  Dreams/Answers (2017 audiophile remaster)
1969-74  Fill Your Head (three cds box set, five studio albums plus outtakes and alternative versions)
1971  One World  (2015 audiophile remaster)
1971  In Concert (2017 Audiophile) 
1974  Live In Chicago (2014 audiophile remaster)
1976/78  Midnight Lady / Band Together (2017 digipak remaster)
1975/77 Rare Earth - Back To Earth / Rare Earth (2006 remaster)

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