Saturday, December 30, 2023

Guillotine – Guillotine (1971 canada, sensational rhythm 'n' blues, art jazz brass rock)

One of those unusual litle records on the Ampex label at the start of the 70s – a groovy rock group with a nice current of soul in the instrumentation – almost a Muscle Shoals sort of vibe – topped with nice vocals from Carol Breval, who's got this deep vibe that sounds nice next to the Hammond and horns!

Recorded in London, England, and released by a New York record label. Who could guess this group came from Québec? The sole hint is the predominance of French names in the lineup (which includes the pianist Pierre Nadeau, two years prior to his involvement with Ville-Emard Blues Band). Their sole eponymous album offers individual photos of all band members without specifying their respective instruments. Alongside Nadeau are Paul Morin, Jean Morin, Andre Morin, Jo Trivisonno, Paul Dalonzo, jr, Francois Petrari and Robert Turmel as well as singer Carol Breval. (similar to a french version of Janis Joplin).

This is jazz rock similar in vein to the Chicago Transit Authority, with expected sprinklings of psych, folk-rock and R&B. Most of the songs on the album are written by either Lanny Meyers or Rick Kunis (the band's arrangers, with the latter producing the album. The excelent track "Those Years Have Gone By" sports a soul feel with chord progressions not unlike a young Pink Floyd, accompanied by a swing-jazz-rock interlude. The folk-rock feel of "Anniversary", filled with somewhat unpredictable chords is complemented by the appearance of a pedal steel guitar. The album closer "I Can't Believe It" is a tour de force clocking in at almost 12 minutes, travelling through several different modes (of which some predict the stylings of VEBB). In closing, a little known, but well-performed, album that merits as much a listen for it's arrangement as for it's inclusion in Pierre Nadeau's recorded resume.
1. Hands Of Children (Lanny Meyers) - 4:33
2. Those Years Have Gone By (Paul Morin) - 5:13
3. Don't Need Your Love (Bob Bilvk, Marty Butler) - 3:48
4. Anniversary (Lanny Meyers) - 5:59
5. Feel Better (Lanny Meyers) - 2:50
6. Crow Bait (Rick Kunis) - 3:10
7. If You Don't Call That Love (Lanny Meyers) - 5:45
8. Jonathan (Lanny Meyers) - 5:17
9. I Can't Believe It (Rick Kunis) - 11:57

*Carol Breval - Vocals 
*Paul Morin - Guitar 
*Robert Turmel - Bass 
*André Morin - Drums 
*Pierre Nadeau - Organ, Piano, Harpsichord 
*Jean Morin - Saxophone 
*Joe Trivisonno - Trumpet
*Paul Dalonzo Jr. - Trombone
*François Petrari - Trumpet