The CD Reissue Wish List blog has been discontinued as of October 2015, as it had served its initial purpose.
Please click on the following links for:
CDRWL Priority 1
CDRWL Priority 2
New CDRWL items and/or new notes on items previously featured here.
CDRWL LPs for sale
Please click on the following links for:
CDRWL Priority 1
CDRWL Priority 2
New CDRWL items and/or new notes on items previously featured here.
CDRWL LPs for sale
Friday, December 31, 2010
The Forum Quorum - s/t. 1968 Decca.
Way cool psych album from New York City area teenagers. They exclusively used Vox Continental organs, and were in fact sponsored by the company. They also made a couple of appearances on the Mike Douglas Show. And, on top of that, they also appeared in a movie. In a lot of ways, they were the East Coast equivalent to the Strawberry Alarm Clock, especially when you consider the amount of flute they employed. They didn't quite have the songwriting skills, or the master of harmony, as did SAC but otherwise a much better than average pop psych album, with plenty of progressive touches.
Here's a good one to play to usher in the New Year - have fun!
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Skyeros - s/t. 1975 private.
Skyeros reminds me a lot of another band we featured a few days ago - Luna Sea. Both are from the Midwest, and pretty much play in a straightforward rock style with a rural tinge. But whereas Luna Sea dedicated all of Side 2 to their more progressive ambitions, Skyeros waited until the final lengthy track, and even at that, it's marginally progressive. A few changes here and there, but it's pretty conservative. Some nice organ and guitar work can be found on this track. Doesn't really fit the "Midwest progressive" sound that we feature quite a bit here. This one is more rock / AOR oriented. It's a very rare and sought after album, so worth a daily entry for that at least.
The origin of the band is unknown, though one ebay auction states it's from the state of Missouri (since confirmed to be from Farmington, MO). This album came in courtesy of Heavyrock's collection, and from that we learn the album was recorded at Golden Voice Studios, which is in Pekin, Illinois (near Peoria). The studio is not a stranger to fans of the Midwest progressive crowd, as its where Pentwater, Starcastle (first album) and Styx (Man of Miracles) laid down their recordings. St. Louis based rock group Head East also recorded there.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Cosmic Eye - Dream Sequence. 1972 Regal Zonophone.
Fascinating hybrid of Indo-jazz and instrumental rock. Lots of sitar, flute, hand percussion, electric guitar, etc... Probably reads like an exploito album, or even a film library soundtrack, but the album works surprisingly well as a continuous whole. There's a CD out there, but the band's webpage clearly states it's a bootleg. So we'll list it here until it comes out legit!
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
The Collective Star - Music of the Mantric Wave, Part II. 1974 Unaminous Anonymous.
The Collective Star - Garuda. 1975 Unaminous Anonymous.
The Collective Star is keyboardist Paul Ramana Das Silbey's first foray into recorded music, while still a resident of New York City. Today he is known as a "romantic classical concert pianist". The Collective Star is what I'd call proto New Age music. Plenty of what is known today as "world music" presents itself, via eastern instrumentation and scales (hand percussion, sitar). Lots of period lyrics full of love and peace. Honestly music like this can be very interesting, and I think in the formative stages as is the case here, it was. It's more authentic than the sanitized gloss we've been subjected to since the early 1980s. A little edgy in the jam sessions (acoustic guitar, flute, piano, organ). Maybe even a little anger that hasn't quite been purged yet. Not exactly Popol Vuh for the "higher key" sweepstakes, but not a bad benchmark either. Also the NYC group Arica may have played an influence here. I haven't heard "Garuda" or the multitude of his later releases.
Monday, December 27, 2010
Zadri & Mo - Erebus. 1982 Polydor.
Zadri & Mo, despite looking like the bad guys in a Luc Besson film, have created quite an exquisite analog electronic album before the market became saturated with third rate amateur done-in-the-bedroom digital variations. Not only is there a duo on keys and sequencers (and that extra person definitely adds to the creativity), they also brought along Heldon's drummer François Auger for the ride. And he adds an urgency to the proceedings, just as he did for Richard Pinhas. Erebus continually changes in a progressive rock sort of way, never settling too long on any one sequence. Real drums in an electronic setting has always been appealing to me, and there aren't that many examples. So file this along with Klaus Schulze's "Moondawn", Klaus Krüger era Tangerine Dream/Edgar Froese, You's "Electric Day" and Wolfgang Bock's "Cycles". Or imagine Zanov with another synthesist and analog drums. Despite the listing of a guitar player, he unfortunately doesn't make his presence felt. A rave up ala Pinhas would've put me under for good I think...
Thanks again to the Alaskan Connection for this one.
Sunday, December 26, 2010
xxx Tangle Edge - Improvised Drop Outs. 1983 Mushroom (cassette). 1990 Auricle (UK cassette). *** Reissued by the band as "Dropouts" (2010) and featured on the UMR.
Tangle Edge - Radio Stroganoff. 1986 Mushroom (cassette).
Tangle Edge - Live in the Presence of Aphrodite. 1986 Mushroom (cassette).
Radio Stroganoff shows a remarkable progression from Improvised Drop Outs. This transformation would ultimately lead to the brilliant In Search of a New Dawn. In fact, many of these songs ended up on that album with different arrangements. There's a little less than 30 minutes of music here, considering that the last piece is a radio interview in Norwegian, which will obviously have limited appeal. But being the archivists Tangle Edge are, I'm sure they can find enough quality material to fill a full CD including this whole album. Just consider the void of released material from 1984-1988, save 1986. Or the time from 1998-2005.
Live in the Presence of Aphrodite is probably the most stripped down recording from the band. It's more like an instrumental Hendrix or Cream, which is a good thing in my book. And then, in fact, they do cover Hendrix on the second side. This is the one and only place you'll hear vocals on a Tangle Edge album, and both the music and the vocals are in the early 70s blues rock style. Perhaps fortunate for us that Tangle Edge abandoned this style quickly after. Not their best release.
Priority: 2 (on the strength of Radio Stroganoff)
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Merry Christmas everyone!
Getriebe - Syncron. 1975 Pauer (EP)
Today's post is once again indebted to The Alaskan Connection.
Here we have about a 17 minute EP, long enough for a one sided LP. Getriebe was lead by Detlev Schmidtchen, future keyboardist for none other than Eloy starting on the Dawn album and ending with Silent Cries and Mighty Echoes (and then left to form the rather lackluster Ego on the Rocks). Ironically, Getriebe will remind listeners of Inside or Floating era Eloy (and the CDRWL's favorite period for Eloy) more so than the streamlined and sophisticated Dawn and beyond albums. In fact, Getriebe sound like many of the organ lead German bands from 1971. The same off-key blues vocals in English, heavy guitars, fat bass and thudding drums. And that one critical component: Hammond organ.
The AC informs us: "Detlev Schmidtchen formed this group in 1971 in Hanover, and in 1975 they won some local band competition called "Pop '75". The prize was time in a local recording studio, where they recorded "Syncron" (so it is from '75, and not '72 as I've seen listed elsewhere). Apparently, they also won the chance to have dinner (?!) with Eloy, who were the guest headliners at this competition/festival. This led to Eloy poaching Schmidtchen for themselves, which caused Getriebe to break up on the spot." NICE - we both liked that one!
Perhaps those great archivist's Garden of Delights or Long Hair can dig out more for us. An instant buy if a full CDs worth of tape could be found.
Friday, December 24, 2010
Luna Sea - s/t. 1976 Luna Tunes.
Well, this really is lunacy. About as dramatic a difference in A-side, B-side as the Eik - Speglun album.
This is a newly discovered rarity out of Nebraska, that's just starting to make the rounds. Interesting to note that Queen used the exact painting on their 1991 "Innuendo" album, except in color (thanks Waxidermy for that info!).
This is another rarity sent in from The Alaskan Connection. I thought he did a magnificent job at describing the album, so take it away AC:
"It's the lone private press LP by an almost totally unknown US band named Luna Sea. They were from Blair, Nebraska of all places, but the album was recorded in Iowa. The first side is going to really test your willpower, as it's just straight radio-rock a la the Eagles, so you'll just have to "man-up" and slog through it. There is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, though, because side 2 is totally different. Suddenly the synths appear, and things start getting a lot more interesting. It starts out in a still fairly accessible style, but things get proggier literally by the minute, until the last track "Rousing The Ghost", which is a fantastic piece of instrumental symphonic prog with great guitar, keys, and even a little flute. Oh, and be sure to stay tuned for the unlisted (and totally stupid) outro! A completely schizophrenic album, but even the band seemed to know this as they named the first side the "Light Side" and the second side the "Dark Side"! Hard to tell what they were really trying to accomplish here. But, such is the nature of the US underground. One part confusion and one part inspiration. I guess that's kind of the charm! In any case, this thing is seriously rare. It only first emerged onto the collector scene within the last year or two, and since it was first discovered only like two or three copies have popped up." Thanks AC!
So true on the question "what are they trying to do here?". It was very typical for bands in the 1970's to try for a radio hit while mixing in their progressive rock ambitions. That strategy never did work.
One of those bands you just hope has more on tape somewhere, to make for a truly great album. The last track is brilliant but Side 1 is indeed dreadful...
Be sure to read insights from friends of the band in the comments section!
Priority: none (way higher if they have unreleased material like Side 2)
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Genre - Commercial Success. 1978 Black Gold.
Now here's one that was buried deep in my LP collection. I first discovered this one while on a record buying trip in 1992 to Albuquerque with my old buddy Jeff. At one store there was a pile of sealed local albums, almost all of them pop or country. But this fusion album looked like it was worth taking a chance on - so we did. One reason is that we were both looking for the hard rock Message "It'll Be Awhile" album (also on Black Gold) that Jeff had received a tip on (we later found one at a different store). Neither of us regretted the choice on picking up the Genre album.
Lead by the guitarist - a slightly chunky black dude with a cool fro - named L.A. Jenkins, Genre play a fairly typical late 70's fusion with toned down guitar leads and Rhodes piano as the lead instruments. While Side 1 isn't particularly noteworthy, Side 2 opens with the excellent 'All Mixed Up' where Jenkins lets loose with a more psychedelic tone to the guitar. And this continues throughout the side, though the standard fusion motif is never strayed from too far.
Features a cool textured cover. Not the greatest fusion album ever, but I have fond memories of it. And I think many of you would enjoy - especially the fusion heads out there.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Akropolis - Half A Million Hours Symphony. 1979 Circle.
What says PROG like that cover, eh? The dude in the white overalls gives me nightmares. Was he auditioning for The Village People before the photo shoot?
This is one that Midwest Mike sent in, but I put it off thinking perhaps he lost his mind. He swore it was much better than it looked. And, as usual, he was right.
In fact, while listening to it, I began to question if Denmark had cities named Toledo, Detroit, Kansas City, Columbus and Ft.Wayne. Blindfold me, tell me nothing else, and I say 1978 Midwest progressive rock. You know, it's just got that sound. The one where St. Louis college aged students, who've been drinking a case of Falstaff and listening to KSHE past midnight - decide to start a band. One of those albums that makes no sense, but it's really good for fans of American progressive rock. Seriously, file next to Albatross, Ethos and Surprise.
If someone does the reissue, one would hope for a redesigned album cover. I'm sure there is a story behind it. At least I HOPE there is a story behind it. Otherwise...
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Opus III & Friends - s/t. 1970 Sonet.
Here's another rare one sent in by The Alaskan Connection, that was on my curiosity for a couple of years.
What strikes me most about Opus III & Friends is how much it reminds me of an American album circa 1970 as found on labels like Paramount, Rare Earth and ABC. It actually sounds like a horn rock album - without the horns. But the compositions have that similar flavor about it. It's clearly a post psych release and many elements of that genre are present, most fortuitously on a couple of the guitar solos spread throughout. The instrumentals go for a quiet introspective electric guitar trio sound. This is definitely not the Sweden of Parsson Sound, International Harvester and Flasket Brinner. Not much is unfortunately.
A good album though, and worth hearing.
Monday, December 20, 2010
Train - Coo-Coo Out. 1977 private.
German band Train puts the jazz in jazz fusion. Mostly this is sax and toned down guitar driven jazz rock. But there's also some acoustic guitar pieces, and the opener 'Solution' is pure funk. The best track is saved for last, a slow atmospheric exotic percussive Middle Eastern piece with flute as the lead, appropriately enough titled 'Arabesque'.
Recommended to fans of the jazzier side of the large German fusion scene.
Train is another rarity sent in from The Alaskan Connection.
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Working Progress - s/t. 1976 RCA.
As mentioned yesterday, we have a new patron of the CDRWL - The Alaskan Connection (no, it's not Sarah Palin). And here's his first submission. I wasn't familiar with it prior, not even on one of my many esoteric want lists. And of course guess who's involved? None other than Mr. Obscuria himself - J.P. Massiera.
This one starts off in the funky fusion style, but it's a head fake, something you can almost predict with Mr. Massiera. Within the album you'll find sweetly sung soft female vocals ala Cortex, indigenous islander music, a little Zeuhlish horns - flute and vocal piece, and even some straight jazz. For certain, all of that is fine and dandy, but it doesn't prepare you for the middle of the album with the lengthy West Indies tribal percussion and underground fuzz guitar soloing. This sequence elevates the album to a must listen experience, even it's not entirely consistent.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Last week we reported on the Sündenfall II reissue. Now we get word that they will also reissue Surgery's "Übermorgen", one of our Priority 3's! It's been on GoD's Coming Soon list for a couple of years, so I'm glad to see it come to fruition.
This is an album that I first heard courtesy of Midwest Mike, sometime in 2007 or so. And we recently featured the album here on the blog.
Occasionally I'll go back through some of my older entries, to validate the data, and I found some more information on the Malachi album, which I've posted here.
I thought it was significant enough to warrant special mention.
Amos Key - First Key. 1973 Aamok / Spiegelei.
We have a new benefactor to the CDRWL named "The Alaskan Connection", and he's sent in some really nice rarities that I hope to share with you in the next coming days.
In the interim, maybe it will only last today depending on my schedule, I thought I'd get back to the main list and feature an album that's been sitting there forever, an album I first heard nearly 20 years ago: Amos Key "First Key".
Amos Key, from Munich, is a high energy classically based organ prog trio like Trace, ELP, Trikolon and a host of Italian bands who were similarly influenced. Would expect Long Hair to ultimately reissue this, especially considering they've now issued an archival album by them from the same time frame: "Keynotes: The Lost Tapes SWF Session 1973" (which is excellent BTW!). This is bread and butter progressive rock right here folks.
Watch out for bootlegs on this title, there are a couple of them that you can currently purchase.
Friday, December 17, 2010
I saw this a couple of weeks ago, but I wasn't quite sure what it was. Now I've come to find out it's a 3LP / 2CD set of recordings the band did from 1982 and 1983.
While I haven't found any conclusive data to support this, I'm suspecting this is a reissue of their first 1983 cassette "Improvised Drop Outs" (on Mushroom originally, later reissued in 1990 (also on cassette) by Ultima Thule's Aurical label), but with considerably more bonus tracks. Or the remainder of the sessions I suspect.
All the tracks on Improvised Drop Outs are also on Dropouts, but I'm not sure if they're the same versions or not. I have been wanting to hear the Improvised Drop Outs tape for a long time. So it appears I'll have that chance.
More data here and here
That leaves two further cassettes still left to be reissued, both from 1986: "In The Presence of Aphrodite" and "Radio Stroganoff". I haven't heard these either. But I'm a big fan of all their LPs and CDs released starting in 1989 with "In Search of A New Dawn".
BTW, be sure to head over to Wayside or The Laser's Edge, as both are running a fantastic sale on the first two Tangle Edge CDs. Both are excellent albums in the psychedelic space rock field.
The Albert - s/t. 1970 Perception (plp 4)
The Albert - s/t. 1971 Perception (plp 9)
And the award for most confusing discography goes to.... The Albert! Two albums, both self-titled, same year, and on the same label. Yea, that makes it easy to research (edit: of late the new discographies claim that plp 9 is from 1971 which is probably correct). This is the last of Heavyrock's albums we'll feature from my last visit over. Due to a bit of confusion with the above titles, I've still only heard plp 9. He originally had played it for me some 3 years ago (and I now have a CD-R which allowed me a closer inspection) and I didn't realize he had plp 4. But indeed he does!
Feb 2014 update: And, as it turns out, I bought a sealed LP of this recently, and the below review does indeed stand true for it as well.
The Albert definitely fall on the soul-jazz/pop side of the horn rock equation. But there's some really fine horn charts, hard guitar and organ that separate this one from the pack. Also check out the well done sax and trumpet solos. I think fans of the genre will definitely want to hear these.
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Grasland - Echt Null! 1981 Torpedo.
Well, after 3 days of some pretty exciting stuff, we're back to the more mundane rarities. This was another one out of Heavyrock's collection, that I'd been looking for a copy for some time. And while I'm not assigning it a priority, I thought it was good enough for a separate entry.
I was a bit surprised at the heaviness of the first track, almost a proto metal sound permeates. There are other times further in where the guitar is grungier than you would expect. Overall, I'd say it's like a harder edged Rousseau, around the time of "Retreat" (but minus the flute), mixed with some straightforward rock with German vocals. This latter element made me think of late 70s Novalis. Overall a pretty decent album, and worth seeking for a couple of listens.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Profil - For You. 1982 Brutkasten.
I've felt like an urban Indiana Jones here the last two days, digging through the lost underground of the Japanese scene. I hope to have more to report on, as the archaeological dig is on! In the meantime, here's another gem from Heavyrock's collection, and it's no less relevant.
We've posted on the Brutkasten label before. It's the original German DIY label, like France's FLVM. So there's really no consistency to what's on it - a true grab bag of styles. After listening to Profil for the first time on Saturday, I'd say it's in the top 4 albums I've heard on the label to date, along with Sirius' "Running to Paradise", Gebärväterli's "Im Tal der Emmen" and the label's most famous underground album - Carol of Harvest (and the only one of these to be released legit on CD).
Profil can be simply described as instrumental rock driven by guitar and synthesizer. But what I found fascinating was how expressive the guitarist is, and the choice times when the synthesizer would lay down a fat solo. And the tracks seem to extend longer than usual, but with an irregular rhythm giving off a trance like effect. There's little variation of this sound, save a couple of tracks, including one funky bit. I've been trying to think of a comparison for 3 days now. About the best I can come up with is the debut of Flaming Bess ("Tanz Der Gotter") minus the narration parts of course. You know how that album just keeps driving forward, with guitar solo after guitar solo. It's kind of like that. Despite the rather simplistic and generic description, Profil's album is somewhat unique in this space. I really enjoyed it myself and would love an opportunity to hear it as a remastered CD. A perfect fit for Garden of Delights.
There's another Profil album from Germany, also strangely from 1982, but I'm pretty certain it's a different group (and supposedly not very good either).
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
4/8/11 update: Will be reissued by Sony Japan on 5/25/2011.
Folks, I just received a detailed letter from Rob, giving me many more details about this release. Turns out Fulukotofumi is not the name of the band - or even the correct name. It's listed this way in Pokora and Cope's books, as well as the back of the LP itself, but we now have new facts. At the bottom of this post, I've included Rob's outstanding research. I will leave the Fulukotofumi name as a label tag, as that's how most folks will search for this album. As well, we have a new album to look for!
Rock Joint Biwa - Kumikyoku: Furukotofumi. 1972 RCA Victor 4-Channel "QuadraDisc" (R4J-7015)
So here's part 2 of our Japanese rare LP journey. And, perhaps unbelievably so, we have another startling winner!
I maintain that Japan is hiding the most buried treasure when talking underground rock from the 1970s. I'm still hearing about dozens of albums that almost no one has any data on. Whether or not they are truly what is purported remains to be seen and heard. I recall a similar experience when going on a deep sea expedition (in the early 1990s) through the Yugoslavian 70s scene, only to find a true few that really matched what was advertised.
Like yesterday's Primitive Community album, we are at the meeting place of rock and jazz. Except the all-instrumental Furukotofumi has a completely different sound than Yokota's bunch. Definitely not a mystical experience as Primitive Community is, yet there are some fascinating Japanese indigenous moments to behold - primarily used as interludes between songs. I'd say the scales are more tipped towards the jazz side here, but make no mistake, this clearly is psychedelic rock influenced throughout. Some fantastic electric guitar work, including at least one blazing acid solo (and mixed with a biwa no less) amongst other excellent amped up shredders. A definite early fusion vibe permeates as well, no doubt informed by the UK groups like Nucleus or Soft Machine. Rhodes, piano, violin and organ also get their turn in the solo spotlight. Even a little Bacharach-ian lounger, with some wonderful horn and string charts, soap opera organ and a nice toned down guitar rip. The highlight is the pounding drum, biwa and psychedelic wah wah guitar piece followed by the groovy horn charts, sax solo - and get this - all phased out ala Dieter Dirks in the Kosmische Kourier studio. There's a lot here to digest.
The below is Rob's research. Fascinating stuff.
"Shiro Miyake (biwa)
Akira Ishikawa (wadaiko)
Hirasama Suzuki Trio
Kiyoshi Sugimoto (guitar)
Suzuki Takehisa (trumpet)
Takeru Muraoka (tenor sax)
Tadataka Nakazawa - (trumpet)
As you can see from the back cover, this "Fulukotofumi" name came from a mis-romanization on the LP itself. There is no "l" sound in Japanese, it's always a hard/trilled "r". They sound the same to the Japanese ear, so they often make that mistake when translating things. Whoever got the LP and submitted it to Pokora obviously could only read that bit of text on the jacket, so Pokora printed it like that in one of his books and the incorrect name spread around. The actual name as I printed it above means "Suite: Furukotofumi". The Furukotofumi is also known as the Kojiki, or the "record of ancient matters". It's the oldest known book in Japan (from around 600 or 700 AD) and is full of creation myths, poems and songs, etc. This album has the concept of fusing the spirit of Japanese mythology (primarily through the use of biwa as lead instrument) with jazz and "new rock" (as they liked to call it in Japan back then), so that's why the Kojiki is used as source material. It was released as one of those Victor 4-channel discs that were popular in Japan for a brief period, and was actually supposed to be the first of a series of these concept albums. Unfortunately, only one more was released. It came out in 1973 and is called "Rock Joint Sitar - Kumikyoku Silk Road". As you might guess, this one has the concept of fusing new music with ancient Indian and central Asian sounds, with sitar replacing the biwa. It features many of the same musicians as the first LP."
Track list (Thanks Rob):
1 Ame No Iwayado
2 Hayabusawake To Medori No Ohokimi
4 Uruwashito Sanekashisaneteba
2 Koe No Kawa
3 Ana Ni Yashie O Tome O
4 Watashimi No Irokonomiya
Monday, December 13, 2010
*** Reissued by Think Oct. 2011 ***
Toshiaki Yokota and Genshi Kyodotai - s/t. 1971 Toshiba.
In the 5th grade, I learned of the term foreshadowing as a literary technique. So I rewrote a somewhat recent review I had of Yokota's "Beat Generation" and placed it on UMR. Did you guess what I would post today, after I wrote the teaser yesterday? Of course no one actually reads my blogs on a daily basis, but I had fun with it anyway...
But I do think it's worth reading, just to give some slight background on Yokota himself.
Well... here it is. An album only whispered by a few in the know. I'm not in the know of course, but I heard this guy talking once at the barber shop about this Japanese flautist... Yesterday, I spoke of Heavyrock's amazing collection. This isn't one he owns. He had to buy a CD-R transfer from a Japanese dealer who was keeping it closely guarded. And it wasn't cheap. And this from someone he buys a lot from! But since the original sells for a few thousand, what are you going to do? Don't believe me? Well consider that a below average condition copy of "Flute Adventure" recently went for $1600 - and that's commonplace compared to this.
I believe Genshi Kyodotai means Primitive Community, but I'm not 100% sure. (And thanks to Nobuhisa and Rob for confirming it!), And, as Rob asserts, the cover displays "Primitive Community" predominantly, so perhaps that really is the title of the album, not the Japanese variation.
There's scant info on the Internet, but I did find a Japanese page (with an English translation) and it's from there I learned of the band members. Most prominent is Yokota's constant electric guitar companion - Kimio Mizutani. Just the mere mention of Mizutani usually has heads like me scrambling for a listen. There's also a track listing... and it's all originals save one cover - a Beatles instrumental called 'Flying' from their Magical Mystery Tour album. The Beatles, of course, were not known for their instrumentals. A full dissertation on this song can be found here. It's important to note that there are almost no covers, as Yokota had a few pay-the-bills albums like "Exciting Flute" and "Young Young Flute" that are nothing but jazz flute renditions of Bacharach, Simon and Garfunkel, Blood Sweat & Tears, ad nauseum.
So now it's time to pull back the curtain, and display the contents....
I feel like I'm in a Steve Berry novel here...
"Toshiaki Yokota and Genshi Kyodotai" is at the meeting place of jazz and rock. That exciting time at the turn of the 1970 decade, long before what is commonly referred to as fusion, when the ambition of free jazz met with rock's exciting psychedelic nature. It wasn't important to display Berklee-trained chops, but rather it was about texture, atmosphere and creativity at its most radical. But fortunately it stops short of free jazz's reckless abandon - that point where it's just noise for the sake of noise. There is meaning to every note, instrument and pattern. As well, we get a peek-through-the-bushes look at a Japanese sacrificial ritual as described by the tribal drumming, Hammond organ shards, wordless monk chanting, Yokota's flute and Mizutani's acid fuzz guitar blazing a wah wah trail all to be one with Kami. And that's before we get to the Hare Krishna chorus. An album like this becomes mythical because it is mystical. It's in the same league of sixth dimensioners like Älgarnas Trädgård's "Framtiden Är Ett Svävande Skepp, Förankrat I Forntiden", Lula Côrtes e Zé Ramalho's "Paêbirú" or Pierrot Lunaire's "Gudrun". If Rolf-Ulrich Kaiser had heard this band, they would have been signed to the Ohr label on the spot.
This album perfectly fits my idea of a "freaky underground album". No, it's not the greatest album of all time. Or even close. But it is the kind that you want to listen to over and over. Because it's fascinating and exhilarating. And for that, I grant it a:
(we have another gem tomorrow, but it's a bit anti-climatic compared to this)
As Rob points out in the comments, there's a full 18 minutes (nearly half the album!) you can hear of this over on YouTube (with a much better photo of the album). And through the wonders of modern technology I was able to create the album photo from the video. Thanks Rob!
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Yesterday I visited my good friend Heavyrock, a fellow music collector who I've known for over 20 years. About once a year I journey over to his house and gawk at his enormous vinyl collection. I could spend days in there and still find things I've never heard of - and it's all choice stuff, not common drivel. I'm very proud of my collection, but it seems so puny compared to his. But he's always been very generous in sharing it with me and others. He's one of those folks I refer to as "friend of this site" or "benefactor". I'm forever grateful to him and "Midwest Mike" who have shared with me all these gems. I just hope that my reporting on them helps you all with the worldwide progressive rock search!
For the next 5 days, starting tomorrow, I'll post albums from yesterday's visit that are relevant to this site, and that I thought were quite good.
So today's post will revolve around the albums that I posted on the main site. These are rarities that aren't really to my taste, but I think many of you may want to take a look over there for reference. The new entries are:
Aquarell - s/t (1979 Germany)
Gryphon - s/t (1975 USA)
Antique - Sorcery (1974 USA. This is the second album by The Antiques that I didn't know existed)
Mongrel - Get Your Teeth Into This (1973 England)
System - On the Other Side of Time (1977 England)
We also heard a rare German fusion album (yes incredibly, another German one) by a group called Namaz. Surprisingly it was on CD already, specially licensed for the Japanese market (Creole Stream Records for those that are interested). As such I didn't write about it, but it's exactly in the fusion genre we report on here tirelessly it seems. We of course heard much more than that, but most of it was in other genres like funk, AOR and metal - genres we both really like, but are primarily too far out of scope here. Maybe one day I'll do more of a deep dive, but there are already good sites out there for these things (especially metal).
I'm particularly excited to report on two very rare Japanese items. Tomorrow's entry may be the most whispered about album of them all. It's something I've been looking to hear for well over a decade. I wasn't even sure it existed.
Saturday, December 11, 2010
Thanks to Augusto from the Italian Prog website as he found some data on the internet for me!
It's not the best photo, but it's a start. And we have the label now.
This is Part 2 of our Rare Italian records request. See the First Born entry for more detail.
We already had more data on Gian Piero Pramaggiore than on First Born. At least we know who he is! What we do know is that Pramaggiore shows up as a contributor on some of Don Cherry's mid 70's Italian concerts on guitar, flute and voice, where he is known as Jaya Deva (and he's a music teacher).
Gian Piero Pramaggiore - Chan. 1981 Mama Barley.
On "Chan", the music features primarily acoustic guitar, soprano sax and a variety of flutes in a rock setting along with some wordless voice. Definitely a variation on the post 70s jazz fusion display. A good album, with a high energy level. It appears that Pramaggiore is currently active in conducting music workshops.
Here are the track titles:
Entrando nel Mundo
Una Ruota Brilla nel Cielo
Farfalle fra le Betulle
Canto per un Piccolo Fratello
Friday, December 10, 2010
For the last couple of weeks, we've featured a few items that were recently sent to me from "Midwest Mike" (Ada le Fol, Metronic Underground, SREL, CdL, Earthstar, Heavy Joker - as well as other items you'll find in the main list like Jigsaw - Puzzle and Röda Ropet - Spänn Bågen). And he's sent me many more items over the years, to which I'm forever grateful. A few years ago he sent me two albums that neither of us can find anything on the Internet about. He once owned them on LP, so there's no doubt of their authenticity. He transferred them to cassette over 20 years ago, made note of the track titles, sold them, and that's where we stand.
Both are from Italy. Neither are mentioned in Augusto Croce's excellent Italian Prog website. Or anywhere for that matter.
(update) And, once again, Augusto Croce comes through. He found some wonderful information on Popsike via an old auction. I looked there myself, but missed it! And I was right - it sure enough is a film library album. The artist is Rino de Filippi, going by what appears to the name of Awake. I can't tell by the front cover, but Augusto tells us: "The author is Rino De Filippi, a library music composer using the nickname Awake in this case. The album was relased on Smash, a minor label that also issued the rare album by I Boom."
Rino de Filippi (Awake) - First Born. 1972 Smash.
To me this sounds like an Italian film library album, for which there are dozens. It has that cool 60's jet-set jazz funk feel - music for the martini drinking James Bond crowd. The thing is, many of these library albums went by different titles and artist names.
Here are the track titles:
Thanks to Augusto for this fantastic info!
Thursday, December 9, 2010
This is a significant update. Also in the batch with the Heavy Joker, Ada Le Fol, et al, was the obscure final album from Canzoniere del Lazio which I hadn't heard until now, and I would now consider it their best work (
Please follow link to the original post for the update.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Ada le Fol - Les Années d'Errance. 1980 Elia Disques.
Regular reader Rob mentioned in the comments section of the Trefle album that I should track this one down, and my good friend sent this one in with the Metronic Underground, Earthstar, etc...
It came up in the Trefle thread naturally enough, as Ada le Fol is another example of the French underground of bands that played in that unique French theatrical progressive rock style made so popular by Ange and Mona Lisa. This is more under produced and amateurish, just as Trefle and Grime are, but that's where the appeal lies. It's creativity at its most raw. Vocalist does a fine job at the Decamps style, whilst the keys and guitar keep the progressive quotient alive. There's one throwaway good times rock and roller on Side 1 to endure, but otherwise this is a strong example of the style.
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Great news here, and one that Record Heaven had announced over a year ago. I hadn't featured this one in the hopes that the reissue would come out - and here it is! I had the Garageland LP that came out in the 1990s, but it was never reissued on CD until now.
Record Heaven says: "
TASTE OF BLUES
Finally we see the re-issue of this old Swedish underground psychedelic monster. Formed around Claes Ericsson, who would later perform in ASOKA and 70's band LOTUS. The album open with the title track, which is a feast of krautockish voodoo rhytms, and flips over to more bluesy style on the 2nd side. The booklet holds a complete history of the band. Very recommended !! "
My entry from the CDORWL:
Taste of Blues - Schizofrenia (Sweden) 1969 SSR (released only in Denmark). One side is a cool free rock jam, like the best of the Krautrock and Swedish artists like International Harvester. The other side is more traditional electric blues, so the album is indeed schizophrenic. Garageland reissued it on LP in 1992.