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Monday, December 5, 2011

Henk Werkhoven, Netherlands

Henk Werkhoven - Orphical Positions. 1982 VMU.

I'm reporting from down here in the mine, and we already struck gold! The Midwest Mike stash has already paid off.

Prior to Mike sending this over, I'd never even heard of Henk Werkhoven. But once I saw the album cover, I was intrigued. After hearing this once, I bought an LP on the spot. You can read about Mr. Werkhoven here. Another one of those Renaissance guys, constantly in creativity mode, yet few know who he is or what he does. As you read the bio, you could come away thinking this is a new age album. Couldn't be further from the truth.

Basically "Orphical Positions" is good old fashioned instrumental progressive rock lead by flute, violin and guitar (acoustic and electric), along with exotics like sitar. A crack rhythm section keeps the proceedings moving along at a crisp pace. At once I'm reminded of Camel's "Snowgoose" and Rousseau's"Flowers in Asphalt". But I also hear Anthony Phillips, Kenso, Flairck, Coda and Verdaguer. A very fine release, and definitely a new discovery for the CDRWL.

Apparently this is one of those albums reissued by the Dutch company Fonos. Basically you can walk up to the Fonos offices, hand them your LP and they'll go off and make a custom CD (or CD-R? I'm not sure). And of course they'll make a handful to sell to others to cover costs. And they'll obtain the rights first. It's a totally legit operation, but not the kind of CDs we want to see here (master tapes, liner notes, bonus tracks, etc...). This would be a perfect fit for a label like Musea.

Priority: 2


strawbsfan said...

As I continue to digitize my vinyl collection I have been hitting the Dutch folk/prog recently with Nightwings and Irolt but this is one I will have to prioritize :)

Purple Peak Records said...

Hi Strawbsfan,

Good to hear from you. Yes, this Werkhoven album really took me by surprise!

strawbsfan said...

Sorry Tom I was a bit quiet recently but I ALWAYS kept reading your blog :)

Talking about Irolt they have not been issued on CD to my knowledge do you think they warrant an entry or is it too "folk" and not "prog" enough?

Purple Peak Records said...

You know, I had always presumed Irolt to be too folky, but can honestly say I've never heard them. The Nightwings was borderline, but I added them due to its rarity and symphonic elements. What do you think? Should I pursue? Which title - the 1975 album probably?

strawbsfan said...

The 1975 is great but the 1979 album is also pretty good in a prog kind of way...I just digitized those and will send you links :)

Purple Peak Records said...

Ah cool,looking forward to it then. Thanks! :-)