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Thursday, April 30, 2015

Tocabiol, France

Tocabiol - Es El,  Es Ela... 1977 Revolum

Here's a title I ran across the other day, and decided to promote from the main list to give it more exposure.

The first half of "Es El,  Es Ela..." is strictly regional folk music, while the other is a long spaced out acid folk rock journey, with narrative vocals. This half reminds me some of Sergius Golowin without the intense percussive build-ups. Perhaps they have another session similar that would make a great CD? The album is sung in Occitan, a language found in southern France and northern Spain.

Tocabiol has a second album that came out in 1979 (Beleu), but I recall that one is of little interest to progressive rock fans. I have it in one of my later CD-R binders, so I'll relisten to see if my opinion changes at that time.

Priority: none

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Alpha Ralpha, France

Alpha Ralpha - s/t. 1977 Wea.

Interesting one here, as this is an album I've been aware of for many years, but apparently didn't properly digest it. I had a mediocre grade on Gnosis, no rating on RYM, and an entry in the main CDRWL list without description. My RYM friend Silly Puppy recently asked me if I had heard the album. I had, I stated, but it had been many years. I didn't even have a CD-R copy, but fortunately YouTube has the album in full, so I finally revisited the other night.

Alpha Ralpha's sole album is a wonderful, and perhaps pure, example of instrumental symphonic progressive rock. Given the name and cover, there's also an underlying space rock tone. The music has a warmth that was typical of the late 70s French scene, and a sound I find very appealing as I get older. In fact, it's that same type of familiarity we recently called out with the new Herba d'Hameli album (Spain) that we featured over at the UTR. Overall, a fine record well deserving of a CD reissue.

Priority: 2

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Yesterday's Children, USA

Yesterday's Children - s/t. 1970 Map City

This title came up in a cross reference, looked intriguing, and off I went to buy a copy. Uh-oh, nothing but gray water on this one. And sure enough, YouTube has the album in full to check out. So I did.

Yesterday's Children were a band from Connecticut, who play a mix of hard blues rock and heavy psych. Very consistent of the type of album that came out of the 1970 cultural transition year in America. Final track 'Hunter's Moon' is an absolute killer, predating the metal movement by a decade. Yet one more American band from this era that was one and done. On the Map City label, perhaps most known amongst collectors for the equally obscure Purple Image. I think Yogi Berra might have appreciated that last sentence.

Priority: 3

Sunday, April 26, 2015

News: Zanov's In Course of Time now on CD!

Some of you will remember at  the end of last year our announcement that Zanov was looking into reissuing his back catalog. And he was looking for Facebook Likes. I guess he got enough of them, because we have our first CD! "In Course of Time" is his 3rd and final album from the original run. Furthering the good news, the Dutch label Groove Unlimited has placed it on their imprint. Given that they are the most respected and largest of the electronic music labels/mail order houses, this can only be a good thing for Zanov, as hopefully he'll be encouraged to reissue the first two albums as well. Thanks to Gnosis Mike for the tip on this!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

News: Charlies archival Jail Sessions to be reissued by Shadoks in May

Shadoks continues to mine the great late 60s/early 70s Finnish hard rock / progressive band Charlies. This title, as per Shadoks protocol, had been released on LP already earlier in the year. This particular album is getting a fast track to CD without the usual 2 to 3 year waiting period. It appears to contain 4 additional tracks not found on the LP. I haven't heard the album yet, and didn't find any reliable reviews, but the label hype sheet does sound intriguing for certain: "After 'Musiikkia Elokuvasta Julisteiden Liimaajat' and 'Buttocks' here we have our 3rd release by the great Finnish band CHARLIES. This album was recorded in 1969 and 1970 in Charlies rehearsal room, an 'drunk tank' at the local jail, since Kari Lehtinen's father (later on known simply by the nickname ”Pitkä”) was the local police officer, so the band could use this room for playing and recording. After Charlies got the 1969 Julisteiden Liimaajat album done, and even though they got a lot of positive feedback from it, they never thought the final product sounded right. Pitkä (bass) and Eero (guitars) spent a lot of time considering how to deliver a much harder sounding album as a follow-up, representing the true Charlies spirit. They got the chance to make a new album, one that would be released by the famous Love Records label. The result again was only as good as the budget resources provided. Although in the end, the album Buttocks gained a good, hard reputation, they were never content with it. One night Pitkä said: ”Eero, we should have made our album from your tapes, the result would have been much different.” So the recording your hear now are those tapes the band was very happy with. Much heavier in sound, amazing electric guitar, 100% pure heavy underground sound. After 45 years this Charlies album comes out as the band wanted it to sound like with many alternative versions of songs from the Buttocks album and unknown songs as well. 100% pure Charlies!"

Friday, April 24, 2015

Nariyuki Shimamoto, Japan

Nariyuki Shimamoto - Prelude To... 198? Private

And the second rarity in this week's batch from The AC...

"Early 80s (there's no date listed on the LP, but I'm guessing it's from around 1982, based on the sound and style) progressive electronic obscurity from Japan. Ghostly synths, weirdly effected vocals and a little acoustic guitar create a mysterious atmosphere, although it's all a bit insubstantial and light on thematic development. Gets kind of repetitive by the end of the album, as a seemingly endless synth wash stretches off to the horizon. Closest comparison would be some of the obscure cassette-only releases by Osiris from the same period."

And while I haven't heard these Osiris cassettes, I did once own the LP (documented elsewhere here), and take away the wild fuzz guitar, and that's exactly what you get here. It's primarily an early 80s styled electronic musik album with polyphonic synthesizers, and completely lacking in heavy analog tones. Picking up a later Earthstar sound here, given the cool vocal effects. This latter element propelling the album to its greatest heights.

Priority: none

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Nimbus, Germany

Nimbus - s/t. 1980 private

And now it's time for our weekly review of the AC's latest archeological finds. Of all the albums in his latest dig, I have to say Nimbus (Germany) is one that I keep hearing about, but never have actually heard. Its reputation is stellar, so does it live up to the "hype" as it were? I use the term hype carefully, but I fear to say that there are many out there who do, in fact, hype this one to me. As in "buy my CD-R... now!" (I don't buy or trade CD-Rs, but that doesn't seem to stop the solicitors of such).  And one can't possibly have a deep dive expedition without at least one Kraut Fusion album, now can we?

Let's check in with The AC and see what his lab results produced: "Yet another instrumental progressive fusion rarity from the vast German private press scene. But this one's a cut above the norm, with excellent compositions spiced with a healthy does of progressive rock, keeping things interesting all the way through. The keyboard work in particular stands out. Unfortunately, the sound could do with some cleaning up, which makes a reissue all the more necessary. This is certainly in the top tier for this style, so hopefully one of the German labels will step up to the plate someday."

And as usual, The AC's findings are as accurate as a DNA sample. One of the more frustrating aspects about this release is finding information on it. Try looking for Nimbus (1980 Germany) on the internet or any online discography. Oh, I tried all my database tricks I picked up as a professional DBA in the 90s, but not much relevant showed up in any event. Too generic I'm afraid.

The music is as The AC describes, a highly melodic instrumental jazz rock album, with guitar and keyboards in the lead. Bands like Surgery, Mosaik, Moira, and Profil are all good guideposts here, and all just as obscure as hell too (though at least the former did get reissued by Garden of Delights - and one we bought immediately).

And speaking of GoD, this album has their name all over it. Clearly one for their digital archival machine. And, just as the AC notes, a sound cleanup probably will take this one up a full point.

Priority: 3

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

News: Fractal to reissue 3rd and 4th Sonorhc albums


Thanks to reader Gal, we learned this morning of this imminent CD reissue that is due on April 27. Amazonia is an archival album, released here for the first time. Both of these albums will be presented on one CD.

Label says: "Good news from the Sonorhc’s « space shuttle » ! After the two first albums « Purf » (1972) and « Outrelande » (1982) released last year, Fractal records deliver now the second volume of the expedition with the third and the fourth album of the band : « Portes d’Orient (East Gates) » (1984) and « Amazonia » (1985) again on CD, perfectly remastered and in the same concept « two albums in one ».

As a band who claim to be « without leader », Sonorhc is a collective with variable line-up as shows this reissue : four musicians (Youval Micenmacher, Laurent Cokelaere, Pierre Buffenoir, Jean-François Gaël) on « Portes d’Orient » and only two for « Amazonia » despite this one could be saw as almost entirely composed by Jean-François Gaël alone, inevitably one the of major force in their ranks. Jean-François Gaël is born in Paris in 1938. He worked as guitarist, composer or arranger with : Hélène Martin, Francesca Solleville, Marc Ogeret, Marcel Mouloudji, Jean Ferrat, Colette Magny, Catherine Sauvage, Henri Gougaud, Antoine Tomé, Mama Béa and with poets : Jacques Prévert, Louis Aragon, Eugène Guillevic, René Char, Pierre Seghers... Theses collaborations will find success five times for the «Grand Prix du Disque de l’Académie Charles Cros» award. He worked at the GRM in 1965, at the GMEB in Bourges in 1985 and at the IRCAM in 1995. He now composed film soundtrack for cinema and TV in his own studio.

So, here is finally reissued and for the first time after thirty years (yeah !) two sounds library records. Title name for each will transport you immediately in the right place: don’t need to move, the space shuttle travel for you ! With 32 tracks in total and with the adequate instrumentation for both albums : « Portes d’Orient » is a stunning meditative ethnic musical trip for guitars, bass, drum, percussions, moog, duduk, flute, guembri, arghoul, woodblock, hurdy gurdy… Overall it reminds the famous Agitation Free first album « Malesch » without the « rock » side but adding the « spiritual » side of Peter Michael Hamel works. « Portes d’Orient » is a very scarce album nowadays and almost impossible to find now in original vinyl LP. « Amazonia » use more synths but also many others ethnics instruments making this one a relaxing and melodic album in a reverie jungle mood. Jean-François Gaël done three trips in the Wayanas tribe in Amazonia and he also worked at that time for the french serie TV « Carnets de l’Aventure » and then brings together all his « amazonia » themes for this album. The patterns are diverses and united, going from Bernard Parmegiani’s electroacoustic side (« Passoula ») to Francis Bebey’s « psychedelic » sanza (« Sanza Sun »), Jorge Reyes’s ambiant ritual (« A Ouanary ») or Steve Roach’s tribal works (« Pakira »)… Two hidden lost gems made in France finally dig up ! Sonorhc go back in time (the space shuttle show you the correct sense of the reading : from the right to the left) and explore the consciousness !

NB :

- (1) : « Portes d’Orient » from 1984, is the real third album of the GROUP Sonorhc, and it should be NOT credited only to the duo : « Jean François Gaël - Pierre Buffenoir » (it’s an error) : there were no artists name printed indeed on the original cover album, but the Sonorhc logo appears well on the camel saddle in the drawing made by Jean Pierre Lamerand at that time.

« Amazonia » is a complete unreleased album recorded in 1985, never published before, and again with a front cover made again and at that time (!) by Jean-Pierre Lamerand.

- (2) : The album « K’an » (1993) became in that way the fifth album of Sonorhc.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The West Coast Workshop, USA

The West Coast Workshop - The Wizard Of Oz And Other Trans Love Trips. 1967 Capitol

This one came up via the CD-R revisit project and is being promoted from the main list. I've had this one a long time, having been fed a copy by my old friend ProgCzar about a decade ago. Like many major label US psych albums, this title remains elusive for legit reissues. There is at least one pirate of this album, so watch out!

The West Coast Workshop is one of the better exploitation albums you can hear. It's primarily orchestrated pop music geared for a mature adult crowd. That is until they break into these cool long jams featuring flute, tablas/hand percussion, and sitars. In the end, you have a "psychedelic" version of the original soundtrack + a handful of originals. Get hip man. Solid. As one online zine (Scram) states it's "easy listening gone horribly awry". Well said.

Priority: none

Monday, April 20, 2015

News: Two jazz titles of interest: Caldera - Dreamer / Lloyd McNeill - Tanner Suite now on CD


Gnosis Mike informed me a few weeks ago of the Caldera, and I'm just now getting around to it. We're both fans of the Latin jazz rock / funk / pop ensemble from New York. I even enjoy their more commercially oriented Earth Wind and Fire styled albums (especially on Sky Islands). Dreamer is considered by many as one of their best, if not the best, despite being their 4th and final album. It's the only one I haven't heard to date. The CD is pressed by Capitol of Japan, but is currently available at a domestic price (here in the States anyway). According to the various discography sites, they had also pressed a CD of this title back in 1990, but it was rare as hen's teeth, I'm sure, before this repress.

The second scan shows Lloyd McNeill, an artist that I've done a poor job of covering in the past. Not sure why, as I'm a huge fan of the jazz flautist, who plays with an incredible spiritual passion. Though truth be told, the music is on the margins of what we cover here. Tanner Suite is definitely not the place to start though. It's more sparse, and academic as it were. I do highly recommend the other two "Asha" releases that have already been reissued in the last 5 years: Asha 1 (1969) and especially Asha 3: Washington Suite (1970). These CDs on Universal Sound are with direct involvement of McNeill, and are well worth exploring. McNeill returned in the mid 70s with 3 fine flute jazz albums, slightly updated for the times (though McNeill was always his own person with his own sound), and those remain without a CD reissue. Ultimately I'll give them a feature here on the CDRWL.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

News: Maloo All About the Things reissued on Made in Germany


And here's the second notice from Grant. I have to admit this is one announcement I flat out missed. I saw it - oh yes I did - and just ignored it. Not sure why, as Maloo is in the main list (notes below), though I never gave it a feature. It's been a long time since I heard the album and it was in the stacks for the CD-R revisit project. The good news is, if I find it more agreeable than prior, now I can buy the CD from the always excellent Made in Germany label!

Finding information in English about this reissue has proven tough. But from what I can gather, this is a 2 CD set of related artists. Spaces of Reflection is from 1976, and is a new title to me. It appears to be a free jazz album if the notes below hold true. And predates 1977's Maloo effort. With trusty aid Google Translate by my side, I will attempt to decipher the label's hype sheet, and edit accordingly:

"SPACES OF REFLECTION 

The duo with Bernd Töberg (g) and Michael Kullick (dr), was throughout this creative period (1974 - 1976) strongly influenced by the 'Coltranschen freedom' (ED: We'll guess this means John Coltrane here). With this particular style of jazz, to make the total improvisation as the heart of their work, it was the exceptional duo's first time to explore further a random harmony instrument. The high art of improvisation, and the dense congenial interplay of guitar and drums, that comes along thematically most melodic and rhythmic, has been able to unite in a progressive fashion, modern jazz, rock, blues and free improvisation itself.

ALL ABOUT THE THINGS 


By mid-1976, however, the duo had taken on a musical change. Because the new works were now composed with complex issues and an extended functional harmony, and did not want to play again and again to the absolute power limit, the duo has been extended by a bassist for a new trio named 'Maloo'. With Wolf Struck on double bass, the new songs could now be played much more relaxed. With the addition of another electronic instrument (Moog Synthesizer), it was possible to insert the new compositions with advanced sound textures to create even more space for the artists. The album was produced by REINHOLD HEIL who at that time studied at an engineer school in Berlin. He was a member of the jazz-rock band BAKMAK and went to NINA HAGEN BAND and SPLIFF later.

CD 1 – Spaces Of Reflection:
1. India 08:25
2. Voodoo 11:50
3. Funkline 03:35
4. Turn Around 09:24
5. Impressions 05:57

CD 1 Total: 39:11

CD 2 – All About The Things:
1. Lenthe 12:26
2. Jordan 05:04
3. Bolus 05:04
4. Nightmare 10:42
5. Samba De Linthe 02:04
6. Nightingale Waltz 07:56

CD 2 Total: 38:16"


My own notes on Maloo stated (again, it's been a few years, so I do want to hear it again): "All instrumental light jazzy rock. Rhythms are pure jazz while the guitarist noodles away with a slight amplified tone. At times, I was strangely reminded of Harmonia's "Deluxe", though Maloo are entirely different genre wise. It's just the way the guitarist meanders about, similar to how Rother would do on occasion. Not a great album by any means, but one worth a listen or two if you appreciate jazz guitar with a rock edge."

News: Easy Chair reissued on World in Sound

OK, time to take a break from the rarities until later in the week and catch up on some news and CD-R revisits. CDRWL reader Grant has informed us of a couple of relevant reissues that have come about recently. First off is this extreme rarity from Seattle circa 1968 reissued by the high quality World in Sound label of Germany. Easy Chair was recorded on one side and featured only 3 songs totaling 20 minutes. There's no bonus tracks here, so consider this a mini-CD as it were. I've not heard of the band or album prior to this announcement. (4/21/15 update: I did listen to it on YouTube last night, and I have to say it is really good. Somber stretched-out blues psych. It's sadly too short, so a CD may be superfluous, but I'll buy one if the right price comes along).

Label says: "Long expected and now re-issued (with remastered sound) for the first time! Easy Chair's 1968 one-sided album, with a running time of 20 minutes, is one of the most sought-after US North-West psych-underground records of all time. Original copies have been sold for over 1.000 US$. Justly remembered as psychedelic rock pioneers, they crammed an amazing career into only one year of activity. Easy Chair performed with the Yardbirds, Cream and the Mothers of Invention. Their epic West Coast blues features the unique chemistry of psychedelic guitar leads, fluid lines and hypnotic chording. By the end of 1968 they caught the attention of Zappa's crew and signed a record contract with Bizarre Records. Unfortunately Easy Chair broke up too soon, though multi-instrumentalist Jeff Simmons, together with drummer Al Malosky, recorded the 'Naked Angels' soundtrack (re-released by WIS in 2008). After releasing his solo album 'Lucille Has Messed my Mind up' in 1969, Jeff joined The Mothers."

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Akira Ishikawa & His Count Buffalos, Japan *** REISSUED ***

Akira Ishikawa & His Count Buffalos - African Rock. 1971 Dan

*** Reissued by Clinck in July, 2015 ***

Moved to UMR

Priority: 2

Friday, April 17, 2015

Tower of Dreams, USA

Tower of Dreams - s/t. 1981 private (EP)

From the mysterious lands of Japan to the medieval castles of Europe, so goes the AC. Well at least if cool album covers are any indication. But alas, the band is from New Jersey. As the stylus drops, one hears some dark electronics. Oh, this one is going to be good! Let's check the AC's dig notes shall we? "If you were to stumble upon this odd little artifact of the private press heyday, you'd probably be pretty excited, thinking you may have just discovered some lost relic of the US progressive rock underground. Evocative band name and song titles, all instrumental, primitive but cool black and white fantasy artwork, weird comic insert with conceptual track descriptions, etc. A sure fire score, right? Well, "not so fast, my friend!" as a certain sports broadcaster is wont to say. Unusually released on 10" vinyl, this is somewhere between a very short LP and a long EP (around 20 minutes), being the work of New Jersey bassist Gene O'Brien and his backing band. Musically, it's kind of hard to pin down, as it's not really prog, psych or fusion per se. Maybe "atmospheric instrumental rock" will do the trick? It's all very low-key, with just a few flashes of guitar soloing to liven things up, and rhythmically quite straight forward. It seems to be themed on sleep and dreaming, so I guess the overall soporific atmosphere is appropriate. About the only direct comparison I could make would maybe be the most sedate parts of the Bob Bath Band album (similarly instrumental, guitar-oriented, and methodically paced), but even that's a stretch. A puzzling one really, although I can't help but kind of like it. For US underground completists only."

Ah crap. The review is very fair, and it does remind me of those American bands that surfaced in the early 80s when the majors had long pulled out of the progressive market, and anyone with a good connection and a few extra dollars, would get an album pressed. They all have this sort of "dull" sound. Not the music necessarily, but there's just no edge to the instrumentation or production. As The AC notes, I kind of like it too. But honestly, past the cool cover and intriguing comic book, there's not a whole that that pushes this one forward into the tantalizing category. Interestingly enough, a copy sold for all of $2.99 last week on ebay. Not all long lost artifacts have value.

Priority: none

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Akuma No Bansankai, Japan

Akuma No Bansankai - Dinner in Honor of Demon. 1976 Demon Record

Well, then, what a place to start on the dig, eh? Look at that cover. And that title. Oh my, we're a long way from the Japanese progressive rock I grew up with (Fable on the Seven Pillows anyone?). I think digging something like this out of the ground must come with some sort of curse or somethin'. And thus said the Elder "He who shall uncover Dinner in Honor of Demon shall spend eternity with album cover on thy mind". Alright, let's check in on what the AC's notes were while he was excavating this one: "Private press psychedelic/folk-rock anachronism from a group of Hiroshima high school kids that generally sounds more late 60s than mid 70s. The album starts strong with some cool amateur guitar psych, loaded with effects, ancient sounding organ and possessing a decidedly trippy vibe. It's a lengthy album however, and kind of gets bogged down in more standard acoustic guitar/piano driven folk-rock much of the time. Would probably go down well with the private psych/folk collector crowd. Like a number of these obscure amateur/student group private presses from Japan, it's actually a very well-produced album, with cool cover art and a nice booklet."

Hard to argue with his initial findings. It's a bizarre album, that moves seamlessly amongst many styles. Each side's opening with variations of [standard 1940s Asian theme] is a bit silly, but some of the lounge bits offset by fuzz guitar were very interesting. At times the album is brilliant, with crazy effects and crazier ideas all coming at you randomly and seemingly out of place. While at others, the fast-forward button begins to look appealing (especially on Side 2). One can even hear a proto Pizzicato Five here. Honestly, the album seems more influenced by 1967-68 era Beatles than anything else. So yes, as the AC notes, one could see this going down a storm with the well heeled collector set who already have everything else, but for the rest of us, it remains merely an interesting curio. Perhaps it would serve well as a featured item in a small town museum.

BTW - you will not see the name Akuma No Bansankai anywhere on the internet, but since the AC speaks fluent Japanese, he was able to decipher the cuneiform tablets for us.

In doing further homework on this title, I came across this sale item, for the super cheap price of $820 (the dollar isn't that strong yet): "A Divine Treasure in my home town Hiroshima.
Superb Fuzz Psych Prog Rock Teens from Hiroshima High School.
Include a member Young Genius Yoshihiro Kunimoto who
later became arranger for Jun Togawa, Denki Groove.

Such fame were Teenager Underground Scene in Tokyo.
Miki (Young Char involved), Rotten Peach etc.
This album from Hiroshima. However, this album had
a young genius keyboard player Yoshihiro Kunimoto.
And he managed and made this splendid album.
If they released a thousand copies and many collectors could hear,
this would be in the top ten of Japanese Psych album.
Gee but Pressed only less than 100 copies.Cool Mystic Mona Lisa Art Cover.
Recorded at Demon Record Studio 29th March to 5th May 1976.
They were high school students 17old in those days.
(They were from Hiroshima Kokutaiji High School which
lots football players are graduated.)
Cool Atmosphere in the Whole This Album.
Great Fuzz Psych, Key Prog, Technical Guitar Jam, Tricky Ideas,
Competent Guitar Plays, Outstanding Lunacy Effects etc etc
Also includes Mystic Prog Folky which in Rural Psych Style,
Basement Heavy Psych Hard Rock ala Blues Creation's Druggy Blues Rock,
Also include Day Dream Folky tune in Half Doze "Happy End" Style
with Hypnotic Lyrics. Outstanding Psych Prog Album Totally.

A1 - Super Highway 3:03
A2 - Shinkirou No Machi 4:45 (Town of The Mirage)
A3 - Yume Ni Notte 3:08 (Ride The Dream)
A4 - Wakare 3:17 (Farewell)
A5 - Tokai No Natsu 1:03 (Summer of The City)
A6 - Torikawa Ondo 2:50 (Torikawa Leading)
A7 - Kimi No Tamenara 6:07 (Only For You)

B1 - Dainashi 1:45 (It's Spoiled)
B2 - Chippoke Na Tayori 3:22 (Small Letter)
B3 - Koisuru Kotono Muzukashisa 4:32 (Difficulty of being in Love)
B4 - Oyome-San 2:55 (Bride)
B5 - Furu Ame Ni Tatoete 4:30 (For example, like Rain falls)
B6 - Moon Drops 2:49
B7 - Hoshikuzu Atsumete 4:03 (Collect Stars)
B8 - Dinner in Honor of Demon 2:00

Personnel
Prod by Yoshihiro Kunimoto, Tomoya Masaki
Engineered by Yoshihiro Kunimoto, Takanori Imada, Shouji Hirata + Demon
Takanori Imada - Lead Vocal
Yoshihiro Kunimoto - Hammond Organ, Synthesizer, Vocals
Masanori Kobayashi - Guitar, Vocals
Tomoya Masaki - Guitar, Vocals
Hitoshi Ninaya - Guitar, Vocals, Chorus
Takuya Ohmura - Guitar, Vocals, Chorus
Shouji Hirata - Guitar, Chorus
Atsushi Kiba - Bass, Chorus
Shigenori Hamaguchi - Drums, Percussion, Guitar, Vocals"


Priority: none

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

New Discoveries are Upon Us

Like the archaeologists who toil away in the Egyptian desert, we too have discovered new and mysterious faces - in the form of rare music yet unheard or unseen by the masses. That most famous of music scientists, The AC, has returned with perhaps his biggest haul yet of unknowns. I took a sneak peak at the stack, and I will just say it is impressive (Including at least one album I never thought I'd hear in my lifetime). Especially after all this time has passed. How does he do it? We'll never know - it is his trade secret.

As well, I've been sitting on a couple of my own LP purchases (similar to Datura and Iliad in that way), and we've heard from old friends like Heavyrock as well in recent weeks. And we have a new friend that we've known for awhile, but has also made some suggestions that require our own personal dig. If that's not enough - the CD-R revisit project will remain on track, and more common albums like Tripsichord, El Tarro de Mostaza, Finchley Boys - to name the most recent activity - will be uncovered as not having legit reissues - a tragedy in of itself.

I don't anticipate going back to daily postings, but I think you will see more activity in the short term as we work through these aural scrolls discovered by the master himself. We are talking back to the Ginga Rale Band and Metaphysical Animation days of yore. I have no idea of the quality of these albums. I know it will be a mix of the good, the decent, and the bad, but as journalists we must discover the truth.

With any luck at all, we should have a new posting ready by Thursday or later in the week.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Tripsichord, USA


Tripsichord - The Tripsichord Music Box. 1970 San Francisco Sound. 1971 Janus

Here's a title I never thought to enter into the CDRWL. I came across it during this week's CD-R revisit project, did some homework, and realized this one is like so many of the classic American psych albums before it - nothing but pirates and shady types. I first heard this album via LP in the late 80s. Yet another one of those awful muffled white label bootleg jobs that held back my musical progress by 5 years. Eventually ended up with a decent cassette dub that now sits on this CD-R. I was all set to buy the CD too when... ugh.

The band is usually known by the title of the album - and it is in fact their original name. They had shortened it by the time of this recording (in 1969) to just Tripsichord. The first copy you see is the actual original and probably sits in the SFMOMA it's so rare. The second copy is the more common one, as the relatively large American label Janus picked up the rights in 1971 and released it all too late for anyone to care by that point. Hence its rarity today.

Musically it falls squarely into what was popular in San Francisco in the late 60s. More commonly known as the "West Coast Sound". It's a mix of hard edged psych and jangly rural pop songs. The latter has always been a turn off to me, but The Byrds were an enormous influence in those days, and that was the mix they brought forward to great popularity. Tripsichord's needle moves more towards the psychedelic, and features a few great tracks that you want to hear over and over. Enough so, to award it a:

Priority: 3