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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Plamp, Switzerland


Plamp - Und Uberhaupt. 1978 private.

Like many albums from Switzerland, Plamp's sole album is a private press that time forgot. The CD Reissue Wish List is full of such albums (Nautilus, Agamemnon, Schakta, Eloiteron, etc...). From the northeastern town of Chur, Plamp went boldly forward with their native German language. As for the music, it's a hodge podge of late 70s rock with jazz and classical accents highlighted by flute, violin and sax. A bit too diverse for its own good, but plenty of nice fuzz leads and organ outbursts. Reference groups: Rumpel Stilz, Flaming Bess, Novalis, Sicher, Novaks Kapelle and El Shalom.

Priority: none

Monday, August 30, 2010

Marakesh, Netherlands


Marakesh - s/t. 1976 Mirasound.

A pleasant, inoffensive primarily instrumental mid 70s progressive rock album. Reminds me a lot of the German bands of the era like Indigo and Fly. Especially the latter, given the saxophone presence. Keyboards are a string synth of some kind. What gives Marakesh a slight edge over their German brethren (in this genre anyway) is some inspired (and amplified) electric guitar work, and an occasional horn rock move with trumpet as a lead. The Dutch duo of related bands Mirror and Lethe are also benchmarks, though Marakesh weren't quite the masters of melody as those groups. One can see the transition from the early groups like Pantheon, Cargo and Earth & Fire to Marakesh and then onto the proto neo-progressive groups like Saga, a style that seemed to be an enormous influence on all modern era Dutch groups.

Priority: 3

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Herrgottsax!, Germany


Herrgottsax! - Siebold Seiergesicht's Sündige Saxofone. 1981 Eigelstein.

Judging by the cover, the title name, and some of the cartoonish voices, one gets the impression this album was made for children. Maybe John Coltrane's kids, I dunno? Other than the aforementioned voices, this is mainly a superbly crafted Kraut fusion album in the Missus Beastly, Munju and Mosaik style. Large ensemble featuring multiple saxophones, flutes, horns, guitar, bass and drums. The compositions and playing are very tight, and some of the sections will have you raising your head repeatedly in amazement. There's some standard jazz noodling as well - but overall a very pleasant surprise and well worth seeking out. Would make for a nice reissue on GoD. Thanks to fellow Gnosis peer Mike Hargis for the heads up on this title!

Priority: 3

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Ginbae, Japan


Ginbae - s/t. 1976 Seaside.

A very heavy album given the 1976 date. Basically a proto metal album with guitar riffs that wouldn't be out of place on a 70's era Judas Priest album. 5 long tracks with long amplified/phased guitar solos. Some typical Japanese balladry can be found in the vocal sections. Songs are dull, and are merely excuses to launch the next jam session. Worth a couple of spins.

Priority: none

Friday, August 27, 2010

Flaviola e o Bando Do Sol, Brazil *** REISSUED ***

Flaviola e o Bando Do Sol - s/t. 1974 Solar

*** Reissued by Mr. Bongo (UK), 2011 ***

Moved to RYM

Priority: none

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Epizootic, Sweden


Epizootic - Daybreak. 1976 private.

Highly ambitious, but amateurish, progressive hard rock. Lots of nice touches including electric piano and flute. Features a high level of complexity for the style. Unfortunately the vocals bring it down somewhat. Definitely worth a few listens though. The guitar really rips here! Boots exist.

Priority: 3

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Eric Delaunay, France


Eric Delaunay - Antagonisme! 1980 Vogue.

In effect, this is the first Tiemko album, as drummer Delauney was the leader of that fine band. Musically similar to his next venture, especially "Espace Fini" though a little less mature and not as focused. A worthwhile listen.

Priority: none

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Coma, Denmark



Coma - Financial Tycoon. 1977 Genlyd Grammofon.
Coma - Amoc. 1980 Genlyd Grammofon.

"Financial Tycoon" is like a direct cross between two of Denmark's finest bands: Dr. Dopo Jam and Secret Oyster. From Dr. Dopo Jam they inherit the obvious Zappa influence, including humorous bits and complex composition style. From Secret Oyster they get the fusion tendencies and instrumental dexterity. Some splendid sax and ripping guitar solos really add spice to the album. I've heard some folks say "Financial Tycoon" is Canterbury influenced, but I can't say I do. Overall, a good one. Not surprisingly, "Amoc" from three years later is much more in the fuzak area, with plenty of soft sax and early digital synthesizer action. All is not a total loss, as there's still plenty of rough edged guitar moments and a couple of moodier electric piano driven pieces, with the highlight being the final title track. Easily 2 points lower than the debut though.

Priority: 2

Monday, August 23, 2010

Blim, England ***REISSUED***



Blim - Zero. 1992 cassette
Blim - No Frills. 1993 cassette

Moved to UMR

Priority: 2

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Alice, France

Alice - Arrêtez le Monde. 1971 Polydor.

I had totally forgotten about this release. I had it on LP for a few years and finally decided to move it out (2015 update: And repurchased it again). It was a difficult decision, mainly because the gatefold cover is so cool - and the feel of the music reminds me of Sandrose's sole album. That was well over 10 years ago. So hearing this again was fun. And also reminded me why I ultimately did not hold onto it. It's by no means a bad album, but Alice were a French pop band exploring with orchestrations and other trendy "progressive" ideas. In that way, they remind me of the Italian groups doing similar like Delirium's "Dolce Acqua" or The New Trolls "Concerto Grosso No. 1". When Alice are strictly instrumental, they can be highly fascinating, and utilize a multitude of instruments (including mellotron). But they are pop singer songwriters at heart, and those moments are pretty hard to stomach, unless you're a fan of said style. Would be a great choice for a Japanese mini-LP. Their 1970 pop psych debut album has been reissued prior (on the Magic label). Bootlegs exist.

Priority: none

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Arakontis, Germany


Arakontis – Live at the Quasimodo. 1981 Blackbird.

This live album is a fine Latin fusion with some nice guitar driven melody lines, and a fair amount of electric piano. Not atypical for the time and place, and another good example of the style. Not as fusion oriented as Rozz and less Latin influenced than To Be, but both albums provide guideposts of what you can expect from Arakontis. Arakontis also appear on a 4 group compilation album called "Berlin Fusion" that also features Chameleon, Changes, and Margo

Priority: none

Friday, August 20, 2010

Bridges, Norway


Bridges - Fakkeltog. 1980 Våkenatt.

It was about 15 years ago or so, while leafing through an LP rarities catalog, that I first came across this Bridges title. The description basically stated that it was pre A-Ha, but you would never know it by the contents of the music. I didn't believe the catalog. I figured it was hype to get top dollar for an obvious rarity. Probably just another pop rock album that didn't sell well. Well the catalog writer was right and I was wrong. This really is something to pay attention to! And it's also filled with irony. A-ha, to many Americans at least, represents the epitome of mid 80s MTV video driven synth pop (I understand that their albums are deeper than that, but the perception remains). So how can it be that the very embodiment of 1980s slick pop, could put out an album in 1980 that sounds like it was from 1968? See, this Bridges album is heavily influenced by the classic Doors sound, right down to the Morrison baritone vocals. As well, most of the instrumentation is vintage including the Hammond organ. Talk about a change in direction! To me, the Doors are a quintessential American band, where the culture is a big part of the sound. So I do think it's hard to appreciate a band from Norway copying the style, even though it's extremely well done. I suppose it's similar to a band from Los Angeles singing in Italian and trying to replicate classic PFM. Anyway, a fascinating album that would easily find an audience for a CD reissue.

Priority: 3

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Combo 8, Sweden


Combo 8 - Vibrationer. 1976 Levande Improviserad Musik.

Inventive mix of fusion and horn rock. 1976 was a little late in the game for horns to be used in this context, which may explain the typical fusion moves that drag this down a bit. Worth tracking down for a listen or two.

Priority: none

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

News: Garden of Delights reissues Amphyrite


Released this month on Thors Hammer, GoD's sub-label dedicated to non German albums. Not a major priority for me personally, but an extremely rare album all the same and it makes its debut on CD. My blurb from the CDOWL below:

Amphyrite – s/t (France) 1973 private. Guitar blues rock trio. One guy solos on guitar while the others keep time (sort of). No vocals to get in the way. Or melody either. Sounds more American in its approach. Amber Soundroom did manage to reissue this on LP before going belly up.

Flight, USA



Flight - s/t. 1975 Capitol

*** Flight - Incredible Journey. 1976 Capitol.  Reissued by Eastworld 2013 ***

Moved to UMR

Priority: 2

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Moose Loose, Norway



Moose Loose - Elgen Er Løs. 1974 MAI.
Moose Loose - Transition. 1976 Vertigo.

Debut "Elgen Er Løs" is a powerful fusion album, that mixes in funky clavinet lines with some ferocious electric guitar leads, playing in an almost psychedelic style. Latter half of the album drifts towards more standard jazz / jazz-rock before closing with an acoustic guitar, piano piece. Followup album, "Transition", is also a good fusion work filled with the new addition of violin combined with the guitar leads of the prior album (more subdued here though). Reminds quite a bit of same era Jean-Luc Ponty mixed with Terje Rypdal's more aggressive works.

Priority: 3

Monday, August 16, 2010

Planes, Germany *** REISSUED ***


Planes - s/t (aka I'll Remember the Landscape on Your Face). 1974 private. CN 501

*** Reissued in 2012 by Entr'acte (UK) ***

Moved to UMR

Priority: none

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Supply Demand and Curve, Ireland


Supply, Demand and Curve - s/t. 1976 Mulligan.

An album I owned as far back as 1992, and comes in an oversized cover that usually suffers from edgewear and a bent top. With that annoyance out of the way, musically speaking Supply Demand and Curve provide a vast array of sounds, like a sampler through contemporary Ireland. The primary progressive rock influence is Gentle Giant, especially their more jazzy moments. Even a few traditional instruments are employed. A good album, second to only Fruupp when talking 1970s Irish progressive rock.

Priority: 3

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Mike Selesia, USA *** REISSUED ***


Mike Selesia – Flavor. 1976 Flavor

*** Reissued by the Shout! label of Japan, August 2012 ***

Moved to UMR

Priority: 2

Friday, August 13, 2010

Pirana, Australia



Pirana - s/t. 1971 Harvest.
Pirana - II. 1972 Harvest.

Australia's answer to 1969-71 era Santana, and a pretty good attempt with excellent guitar and organ leads. Tribal percussion, impassioned vocals and a solid pop sensibility help reinforce this comparison. First album has a little too much percussion, and can drag at times. Second album is a gem, and one I'm finally glad I bought as an original vinyl (incredible gatefold cover!). Both albums listed on Aztec's coming soon list, and should be considered welcome additions to any early 70s collection.

Priority: 2

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Manar, Iceland


Mánar - s/t. 1971 SG Records.

Song oriented organ/guitar based rock, typical of the early 70s Scandinavian style. Sometimes recalls bands such as Junipher Greene and Thors Hammer, though Manar are a bit duller than that may imply. Nice flute work. Decent period piece and ranks ahead of other similar Icelandic bands such as Trubrot and Odmenn. Boots exist.

Priority: None

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

News: Esoteric to reissue The Dog That Bit People


Not long ago we announced Esoteric's October releases. They had mentioned a couple of more in the pipe, and today we learned the super rare The Dog That Bit People is being reissued. There is a prior legit reissue on the obscure Shoestring label, but those are long sold into collections and impossible to find now.

I never did feature this album separately, but it was in the Original List entry. Below is the excerpt:

The Dog That Bit People - s/t (England) 1971 Parlophone. Standard underground UK rock album, not that dissimilar from what you would find on the Dawn, Neon or Transatlantic labels during this era. Features a slightly down home folk feel combined with some nice organ/mellotron and a few good leads. Not overly progressive, but a well produced rock album all the same. Originals are very expensive. Reissued originally by the Shoestring label in 1994.

The always excellent Planet Mellotron website describes the album as such: "When organist Norman Haines left Locomotive to form The Norman Haines Band (subsequently producing the fab Den of Iniquity), bassist Michael Hincks and drummer Bob Lamb added two guitarist/vocalists and formed The Dog That Bit People. Their sole, eponymous album from '71 is the kind of stylistic mish-mash that usually gets labeled 'progressive' these days, despite having next to nothing in common with the brand leaders. OK, I suppose it's 'progressive' compared to the mainstream pop and rock of the day, but it's not a particularly adventurous album, opening badly with the overly gentle Goodbye Country, while halfway decent proto-prog like Cover Me In Roses is followed by the good-time country-rock of Someone, Somewhere. Closer Reptile Man is the most rocking thing here, with its distorted vocal, but it's a case of too little, too late.

Keith Millar plays Mellotron, with a string part towards the end of opener Goodbye Country, more of the same (endearingly out of tune) on Cover Me In Roses and (in tune this time) Walking. Overall, then, The Dog That Bit People isn't a hidden artifact from the era, just a rather ordinary album with a couple of good points, just scraping three stars, with some welcome Mellotron work."

Interesting to note that Esoteric also reissued their own Eclectic release of Locomotive.

It would seem that The Norman Haines Band won't be too far behind. I can only hope so!

Firyuza, Turkmenistan


Firyuza - s/t. 1980 Melodia.

I once joked that if it was from Turkmenistan, it had to be good. Of course I was talking about the Gunesh Ensemble, and didn't realize there was a second progressive group from the same place and time. Three long tracks adorn this one of a kind album. Seven piece group with guitar, sax, flute, keys, violin, bass, drums and percussion. While not as hot or as entirely unique as the almighty Gunesh, this is still a fascinating fusion, one that reflects the unique culture of the Turkmen. I'm constantly amazed at some of the subversive sounds coming from the old Soviet Union. I'm surprised Boheme Music of Russia didn't reissue this with all the other great ex-Soviet albums formerly on Melodia. Cool cover featuring the band, with instruments in hand, proudly wearing their traditional telpeks (tall fur hats).

Priority: 3

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

News: Session to be reissued by Rocket Records in ONE WEEK!


Ay-yeee-yooo-yeeeee!!!!!!!!!!

You read it right boys and girls. The super rare Finnish album is coming out on CD from Rocket Records scheduled to be reissued August 18th!! And it's not just rare - but very good. We featured them here.

We're getting word that one US vendor might be able to carry these! Can't say who, but it does offer hope for us folks in the US.

More info here (in Finnish).

Clicker, USA


Clicker - s/t. 1973 Hemisphere.

Private press rock LP on the Hemisphere label from Madison, Wisconsin that I picked up on ebay a few years ago (in fact, the cover scan looks eerily familiar given the ring and edge wear).

First couple of tracks are straight forward early 70's rock all the way, though they feature mellotron on the 2nd track. One of the rare places where I really think they used the instrument as a strings sampler rather than as moody accompaniment. This is followed by an atmospheric acoustic guitar driven instrumental. Then a Yes-like proggy piece, having that uniquely Midwestern approach (e.g. Starcastle or Albatross). Another rocker and a short quirky instrumental close out Side 1. Side 2 starts with an amalgamation of their prog and rock tendencies. This leads to the 16 minute closer. After a silly 2 minute introductory narrative, we are treated to a surprisingly great jazz rock instrumental, though there's an overlong and somewhat uninteresting guitar noodle solo section (with no other accompanying instruments). A nice album that grows on you. The good parts are really good.

Clicker has a second album called "Harde Har Har Har" which I understand to be of much lesser interest (and which would seem obvious, I suppose, given the title of the album)

Priority: 3

Monday, August 9, 2010

Baracca e Burattini, Italy


Baracca e Burattini - Hinterland. 1981 Mama Barley.

One of many Italian fusion albums from this period, influenced by the Cramps label groups such as Bella Band and late era Canzoniere Del Lazio. Also Perigeo should get a nod here. I also detect a slight Zeuhl underpinning, as noted by the chanted, wordless vocals. On the soft side of said genre, but definitely distinguishes this album from the pack. Band is named after a 1954 Italian film. Worth a few spins.

May 2013 update: I noticed today that the band has a new album coming out. I wonder if that will lead to a reissue?

Priority: none

Sunday, August 8, 2010

News: Handgjort album to be reissued on Silence


I'm a little late to the party on this one, but just noticed this while researching another Swedish band on the excellent progg.se site.

Apparently there's a new vinyl only label called Psykofon, who it appears has done the impossible - obtained a license from Silence Records, a label notorious to keeping things close to the vest. As you will see in the blurb below, Psykofon take their vinyl very seriously, which is awesome. Once in awhile, I'll buy a well made LP reissue if the originals are impossibly rare (and Handgjort qualifies - otherwise I would pay for the original even if expensive, just not terribly so) and are also one of my favorite albums (not so much in this case I'm afraid).

It's also apparent from the below statement that Silence themselves will reissue the CD. If so, that will be the first reissue from them in many years. Perhaps we can see the first Flasket Brinner in our lifetime! As well as some others like Anna Själv Tredje, Kebnekaise's "Elefanten", etc...

"Handgjort

(Vinyl, Psykofon Records, OBJEKT 1)

(CD, Silence Records, SRSCD 3618)

Handgjort ("Handmade") recorded a legendary album in 1970 released by Silence Records. All covers were hand painted by the band members. The music is moody underground folk with eastern influences. The album sold very poorly and is a serious collectors item today. The original band members were: Marcus Brandelius aka Greg Fitzpatrick, esraj and vocals; Guy Öhrström, acoustic guitar; Stig Arne Karlsson, sitar; Theo Greyerz, tablas.

After over three years of preparation, Psykofon proudly presents Handgjort in an expanded reissue!

Exclusive replica, with handpainted covers by the band members once again! Original album remastered from the master tapes without digitalization! Bonus album recorded live at the festivals at Gärdet 1970 and 1971, all previously unreleased! 25 minutes of exclusive bonus material to the vinyl release. Strictly limited edition of 600 copies done with full cooperation of the band and Silence Records! 16 page booklet telling the complete uncensored story of Handgjort, featuring unique photos and lots of reproductions of original Handgjort hand painted covers!

We at Psykofon feel that this reissue is something very special. The mythical moody mystical cult vibe of the original recordings are well captured here with new original sleeve art by the band members, just like in 1970. This one is for real folks, and will surely blow everyone's mind! This edition is very true to the original in its feeling and the materials chosen for the issue. Featuring entire bonus LP with previously unreleased live material recorded at the Festivals at Gärdet in 1970 and 1971!! LP comes with comprehensive 16 page booklet telling the complete unheard story of this underground band. Handgjort is the first release from Psykofon Records.

New date for release: Tuesday 18 May 2010, 19.00 p.m., at Pet Sounds Bar, Skånegatan, Stockholm, Sweden.

Handgjort will perform live for the first time since 1971!!!

The release is a Psykofon and Silence coproduction.

Please contact us at:

psykofon@gmail.com "

We featured Handgjort last October.

Air, Germany


Air - Teilweise Kacke... ...aber Stereo. 1973 Eigenbau.

My review for Gnosis from 2006: "One of the most obscure albums from the vast Krautrock scene, Air’s sole album from 1973 has just recently surfaced to the collector’s market. It’s easy to see why. Translating more or less to “Partially Sh*t… …but in Stereo”, and featuring a plain white cover with “Air” in gothic lettering, one gets the impression this was made for fun and distributed to friends and club patrons. Musically it could be categorized as instrumental rock, not that distant from what one would find on a sound library album. That is, generic incidental music used for television and films. Maybe not 100% accurate, as these cuts do seem to be self-contained composed pieces, but similarities do exist, especially considering how simple the songs are. Organ is the featured instrument, and the tones are ancient, more akin to 1965 than 1973. It’s even older sounding than the organ used by Erlkoenig, if that’s possible. The organist doubles on flute, but the playing is more 18th century classical than Osanna. The electric guitar is primarily used only for rhythm and is lacking any kind of rock tone effects. And, of course, there is a drum solo to suffer through. The easy comparison would be the Roland Kovac New Set (another German sound library group), but misses their strong jazz background and creativity, and thus is far less interesting. In conclusion, Air is not a bad album at all, and does make for a nice curiosity."

Priority: none

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Arpaderba, Italy


Arpaderba - L'Aleph. 1981 Incontro.

I first got a chance to hear this rarity while visiting a friend in Rome in 1994, and I noted it as one of the more interesting albums that I heard on the visit. It would be years later before I could even find reference to it, and I began to question the accuracy of my notes. Was this the right band name? Album? Finally, within the last few years, the album has resurfaced, and I've had a chance to hear it again.

Arpaderba are an instrumental medieval folk rock group lead by the former guitarist from Raccomandata Ricevuta Ritorno and Samadhi. Reminds me of somewhat of the bands coming out of Brittany during this time like Avel Nevez or an instrumental Malicorne. Very nicely played (especially the violin), with just a bit too much gloss in the production to have any major impact on the scene. Minimum Vital would later take a similar approach (though with Baroque as a blueprint) and apply much more firepower. Still a very worthy piece and a surprisingly different sound to come out of Italy.

Priority: 3

Friday, August 6, 2010

Tommy Broman, Sweden


Tommy Broman - Efter Midnatt. 1976 YTF.

What we have here is 9 strong instrumental compositions with Broman providing electric guitar leads (wonderfully affected with wah, fuzz, phasing, etc..), Bjorn J:Son Lindh on flute, and others on electric piano, congas, and whatever else was gathering dust at the studio. The 70s Swedish ensemble Lotus also comes to mind here. A very good album that few still seem to know about.

Priority: 3

Thursday, August 5, 2010

La Confrerie des Fous, France


La Confrerie des Fous - s/t. 1978 Ballon Noir.

Nice electric progressive folk, typical of the high quality Ballon Noir label (Ripaille, Malicorne, Emmanuelle Parrenin). Just when you think it's going to be a typical folk rock album, they'll throw in a complicated break, and all hell breaks loose with some fine guitar soloing.

Priority: 3

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

News: Esoteric's October releases



As mentioned before, I'm not very consistent with announcing Esoteric's reissues. For the most part, they release albums already on CD, and thus out of the scope of what I'm doing here. Many times these will be improvements on what was available prior, but maybe not enough for me to call out.

But October's batch caught my eye mainly for the first and third Out of Focus albums (Second, self-titled album, will come out in November). These were reissued by Ohrwaschl (Kuckuk) back in the early days of the CD reissue, and are barebones at best. They are also long OOP, and have been bootlegged in recent years. Just as Ohrwaschl's Nosferatu is now being tackled by Long Hair, I think Esoteric's reissues are going to represent a major upgrade.

Here's the full list:

"October's releases aren't totally finalised as we are waiting for some expected clearances that we would like to pop in there-- but at the moment are as follows

Machiavel-Mechanical Moonbeams
Machiavel-Jester
Out of Focus-Wake Up
Out of Focus-4 letter Monday afternoon (double)
Titus Groan-Titus Groan
Randy California-Kaptain Kopter and the Fabulous Twirlybirds "

News: Soleil Zeuhl to reissue first Strave album


According to a response from Alain on Progressive Ears, Soleil Zeuhl will be reissuing the first Strave album this Fall. He also said to look for other announcements, though no word if the other Strave's are also being reissued.

Great news!

We recently featured Strave in April.

Fondation, France ***REISSUED (sort of)***




Fondation - Sans Etiquette (France) 1978 Eurock
Fondation - Metamorphoses (France) 1980 private
Fondation - La Vaisseau Blanc (France) 1983 Tago Mago All are cassette only releases.

***To be reissued by Bureau B in Jan 2018. However it is a compilation CD rather than the 3 albums in full***

Fondation were a duo made up of Ivan Coaquette (Spacecraft, Musica Elettronica Viva) on guitar and electronics and Annanka Raghel on organ and voices. For "Sans Etiquette" the first side contains one long, dark electronic soundscape (primarily droning organ), with haunting female voice. The other side is more rhythmic with some fine guitar. "Metamorphoses" is the best of the 3, features a more varied palette, and tracks closest to the Heldon/Spacecraft model (though more dynamic and interesting than Spacecraft). No less worthy, the final album features female French narration from Annanka (she has a beautiful speaking voice), with plenty of excellent guitar and electronic floating on top. All three of these are worthy of a reissue and would make for a wonderful set.

Priority: 2

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Morning Sky, USA


Morning Sky - Sea of Dreams. 1976 Morning Sky Records.

On the surface, New Hampshire based Morning Sky are a typical mid 70s jazz flute ensemble. Then the sweet airy female vocals add some life, and the peppy rhythms recall the Lloyd McNeill Quartet. Then, out of nowhere, arrive these loud fuzz guitar solos that are truly exciting in this context. Fascinating album and very much worth seeking out!

Priority: 3

Monday, August 2, 2010

Nimbus, Finland *** REISSUED ***


Nimbus - Obus. 1974 Satsunga

*** Reissued by Rocket Records, July 2013 ***

Moved to UMR

Priority: 2

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Oz Knozz, USA


Oz Knozz - Ruff Mix. 1975 private.

One of the better US private press progressive (alliteration allegation) rock albums from the 1970s, this time from Houston, TX. Typical amateurish production, with an underground vocal style (Id's "Where Are We Going" leaped to mind) and overall approach of any US 1970s group from anywhere. Like most bands of the era, the idea was to throw out a few different styles to see if something would stick. Of course the grand plan was for a major label to hear their privately released album, by chance, and then want to sign them up for a 5 album contract so they could open for Led Zeppelin or Foghat on their next sweeping US tour. What separates Oz Knozz from the others, is a strong compositional component, with plenty of original ideas and superb instrumentation (especially the guitar work). 3 part "Doodley Squat" is fantastic. My favorite track though, has to be the groovy and infectious horn rocker, which sounds as dated as the movement itself and easily could have been from 1969. The fact these guys tried that in 1975 is the equivalent of Genesis releasing a "Foxtrot" like album in 1982. Love it. It also explains why Oz Knozz disappeared practically without a trace. The band wrote me a few years ago to tell me they reissued the CD, but it appears that did not happen. A bootleg does exist however.

Priority: 2