lunedì, febbraio 28, 2011

Brotherhood - Brotherhood Brotherhood (1969 psych)

Brotherhood - Brotherhood Brotherhood (1969 psych)
Brotherhood - Brotherhood Brotherhood

Featuring a distinct shift in direction from their debut, the sophomore effort by The Brotherhood is decidedly less pop oriented, and more consistently psych than it's predecessor. Featuring several covers, some of which work, and others which seem to have been a bad idea, the album is also more consistent than their first as well. The cover of "California Dreamin'" is quite heavy, and the pick of the collection to my ears, while their version of the Lennon/Mcartney tune "When I Get Home" gets similar treatment. The cover of Joe South's "Rose Garden" is out of place, and should have been left in the outake bin. It's easy to see why many who liked their first, are left feeling cheated on this one, as there is a completely different orientation to it. But if you can divorce the two records from each other, and take each on it's own merit, both are quite strong. Grades - 1 A-, 2 B+'s, 2 B's, 4 B-'s, 1 C, and a C-.
From RYM (tymeshifter)

domenica, febbraio 27, 2011

Pandora - Measures of Time (1971?74 sweden prog)

Pandora - Measures of Time

Pandora was founded 1971 in Norrkoping, Sweden by drummer Bertil Jonsson and on guitar Urban Gotling. They release so far a single album in 1974 named Measures of time. The music is well played, with symphonic touches, they remind me in places of Beggar's Opera or even Genesis or Camel, nice keybords and pleasent voice overall. I realy enjoy this album , nothing realy groundbreaking, but as a whole a nice surprise. Quite complex arrangements, with nice atmosphere, a good prog album for that time, that stood the test quite well today. All pieces stands as good, not a weak moment here. The band lasted until 1981 when disbanded from diffrent reasons between musicians who already some of them left for another musical realms. Anyway the band has some good concerts , opening for Kaipa and Trettioariga Kriget. 3.5 for Measures of time, good rlease that needs a wider recognition, quite obscure and hard to fin, but not impossible. 
From RYM (B_olariu)

sabato, febbraio 26, 2011

New Zealand Trading Company - same (N zealand psych)

New Zealand Trading Company - New Zealand Trading Company

Along with The New Mix, The Travel Agency, and The Music Asylum, the one and only NZTC album is a "never found" (as opposed to "lost") psychedelic classic. The album contains no list of personnel, no background information on the band, nothing. The record label itself is a mystery. Even Vernon Joynson's American psychedelic bible Fuzz, Acid, and Flowers overlooks the group (the review in the web-based version of that book is mine)! Not surprisingly, you can still pick this one up on the cheap.

This is psych - jazz that will appeal to-fans of Wake Up...It's Tomorrow era Strawberry Alarm Clock. The material is all original, save for an engaging cover of "Hey Jude". The writing is of consistently high quality, and the harmonies grab the listener and don't let go. Particular highlights include the fuzz guitar / vibes interplay on "Jam And Anti - Freeze", and the vivid character study "Winnifred Jellicoe". I'd not only take this one to the desert island, I'd stay with it if the rescue party didn't have room for the both of us! Indescribably essential! From RYM (Ochfan)

mercoledì, febbraio 23, 2011

Popol Ace - Popol Vuh(1972 nor prog hard rock)

Popol Ace - Popol Vuh

Sounds like Greenslade etc. Great, warm, symphonic, sympathetic! But anyway, also some hard/blues/rock, nice too, but not so nice, at least the more poppy parts. Enough good because of many great moments.
From RYM (Fastro)

martedì, febbraio 22, 2011

Ecology - Environment/Evolution(1970 psych rock)

Ecology - Environment/Evolution

Former Blue Things leader, the late Val Stecklein, teamed up with producer Ray Ruff to form this bizarre mystery band/concept lp which is stronger than Val's moody solo lp on Dot called 'Grey Life'.
It was very low key in band credits but the playing and singing is glorious. It leans more towards Val's first love: country & western music. Who even know who the steel pedal player is on these sessions? Val can't tell us. However a few tracks are sung by a different singer, possibly Ruff himself who had a small recording career of his own.
There are no photos, just a poem by Val on the back cover. Happy Tiger Records was not a company who planned things out. I'm surprised this came out at all. Blue Things fans don't know much about this release.
The tracks are as follows:


There's a lot of banjo on this lp as well. Sounding like later day McGuinn's Byrds and Dylan's country period. I'm impressed by this whole event.
Never reissued on cd. What a shame.
From RYM (Kupa99)

domenica, febbraio 20, 2011

Finnforest - Finnforest (1975 great finnish jazz prog)

Finnforest - Finnforest

Well played prog fusion; a bit similar to Errobi. Not very rich in content, but nice enough. Recommended.
From RYM (tovan)

mercoledì, febbraio 16, 2011

Lizard - Bad Companions (1973 aussie prog hard prog)

Lizard - Bad Companions

Lizard is one of the forgotten progressive rock bands from Australia from early '70's . Releasing one album at Harvest in 1973 named Bad Companions, they didn't get much attention , and because of that soon they disbanded, even in the band were great and talented musicians . It's a very rare album, hard to get in original form - vinyl, I have a CD-R with the album from a friend of mine who were kind enough to make me a copy from the original vinyl, he didn't want to sell it. The album so far, from my knowledge didn't get a re issues, maybe in the future someone will think about this band and give a proper CD release. Some members from Lizard were earlier in another good band from late '60's White Wine and the sax player Dave Connors will play with one of the most famous british psychedelic - space prog from the '70's - Jade Warrior. The music is progressive rock with some blues and jazz moments, just a fiew but they are, given a certain atmosphere of the album. In some parts the album sounds a bit to experimental side with killer guitars and absolute stunning sax playing, some times they remind me in places of King Crimson or same jazz bands from mid '70's. The voice of Mich Tulk is very ok fiting very well in the album, aswell the rest of the musicians are very talented. The killer piece is Page Missing From My Book, mindblowing guitar leads and fabulous sax interplaying with the rest, the rest are ok. Now, I'm not saying that this is a masterpiece of this genre, but is filled with good pieces and excellent musicianship. One of the rare and forgotten progressive rock bands coming from the land of canguroo.3.5 for Bad companions, good towards great but not an essential album. Good art work, specially the back cover looking like a page from a newspapper.
From RYM (b olariu)

martedì, febbraio 15, 2011

Abraham's Children - Time (1973 can hard psych rock)

Abraham's Children - Time

Having listened to this one a half dozen times, I've got to tell you these guys barely qualify as a rock band, let alone a psych act. Quality pop outfit yeah, but psych? Definitively not ...

Guitarist Ron Bartley, bassist Jimmy Bertucci, drummer Brian Cotterili and keyboard player Bob McPherson got their start in the late 1960s with the Toronto-based Just Us. That outfit subsequently morphed into Captain Midnight's Dirty Feet (great name), but ran into a problem with Captain Midnight's publishers. The threat of legal action was enough to see the quartet opt for another name switch - this time around Abraham's Children.

Signed to the small Toronto-based G.A.S. Records, the band enjoyed a Canadian top-40 hit with their debut 45 'Goodbye-Farewell' b/w 'Hot Love' (G.A.S. catalog number G-1004). Their 1973 follow-up 'Gypsy' b/w 'Fly Me To The Sky' (G.A.S. catalog number G-1005) went top-10, leading G.A.S. to finance an LP.

Unfortunately, by the time the group started recording the album, musical tensions had begun to flare. G.A.S. executes demanded the band continue to work in a commercial pop vein, while the band members were interested in a harder-rock sound. Guess which side won the fight? Produced by band manager Paul Gross (who contributed a couple of tracks to the LP), 1973's "Time" offered up a mix of the earlier singles and new studio material. Boasting three lead singers in Bartley, Bertucci and Contterbill, the entire set was enjoyable, with tracks such as 'Children's Song' and 'How To Be A Lady' showcasing the group's knack for writing and performing commercial pop. Imagine a Canadian version of Pilot, or The Raspberries and you'll get a feel for most of the album. The group also enjoyed a third Canadian hit with the bouncy 'Thank You' b/w 'Workin' for the Man' (G.A.S. catalog number G-1011). It's interesting that the two best songs are also the least commercial. Both 'Woman 'O Woman' and the group-penned 'Workin' for the Man' are thumping rockers, albeit with harmony vocals that make radio stations so happy.

"Time" track listing:
(side 1)
1.) Gypsy (Paul Gross) - 3:04
2.) Hot Love (Paul Gross) - 3:33
3.) Goodbye Farewell (Jimmy Bertucci) - 3:08
4.) How To Be A Lady (Jimmy Bertucci - Ron Bartley) - 4:38
5.) Thank You (Jimmy Bertucci - Ron Bartley) - 2:54

(side 2)
1.) Woman 'O Woman (Jimmy Bertucci - Ron Bartley - Bob McPherson) - 3:46
2.) Children's Song (Jimmy Bertucci) - 4:42
3.) Workin' For The Man (Jimmy Bertucci - Ron Bartley - Bob McPherson - Brian Cotterili) - 6:10

Following the album's release the band underwent an ongoing series of personnel changes that saw Bertucci, Cotterili and McPherson all quit. With replacements the band struggled on for three more years, during which time they shortened their name to 'The Children''. They also released one final non-LP single - 1974's 'Goddess of Nature' b/w '' (Rampage catalog number UAWX-361-W). The group finally called it quits in 1976. Bartley, Dinardo and O'Shea subsequently formed Bang. Bertucci continued to record under the name 'Jimmy B'.
20 years after the original breakup, in 2004 Bertucci started touring again under the Abraham's Children banner.

domenica, febbraio 13, 2011

FM - Direct to Disc (1978 great can prog)

FM - Direct to Disc

This album really took me by surprise. FM was one of those Canadian progressive rock bands that often had commercial inclinations, but this second album, from 1978 was easily their least commercial album. Nash the Slash has left by this point and Ben Mink came in, playing the same instruments: electric violin and electric mandolin. Yes, the same Ben Mink who later found himself playing for k.d. lang (yikes!). Well, if you were one put off by FM's commercial inclinations, you'll be really happy with Headroom - Direct to Disc. It's basically two side length cuts, with the title track and "Border Crossing". This allowed the band to be more experimental than usual, where Cameron Hawkins includes some trippy spacy synthesizers, and Ben Mink gives it all with his violin work (something I noticed he toned down considerably on Surveillance). Even Martin Deller gives us some of his most interesting drum work. That's a great thing about letting the band just sit down and improvise here. Too bad FM couldn't continue in this direction, probably because this was the late '70s with punk and disco all the rage. Honestly I think FM made a couple of great albums, but I really thought they lost it with City of Fear, but I really think Head Room is certainly one of their finest albums!
From RYM (proghead72)

venerdì, febbraio 11, 2011

Polifemo - Polifemo II (great arg hard prog jazz)

Polifemo - Polifemo II

This second and last Polifemo's album from 1977 consists of 6, mostly long tracks: hard progressive-oriented, still featuring heavy riffage by David Lebon, though with a more elaborate structure, sort of crossover between Deep Purple and Focus perhaps.
Notwithstanding the Lebon's songwriting and vocals give the band a distinct and privative idiosyncrasy, which keeps it miles away from the generic 70s' prog.
"Viene del sol", "Trópico de Cáncer" and "Dualidad" look like the standouts of "Polifemo II", though this LP is pretty less interesting than the debut; some Afro percussion and jazz fusion meanders try to give it an attractive tone, though the group was over already.
An interesting band Polifemo while did last: a good first album, and this passable though inferior epilogue.
From RYM (death metal doll)

mercoledì, febbraio 09, 2011

Hokus Poke - Earth Harmony(1972 prog-hard rock)

Hokus Poke - Earth Harmony

Country influenced prog rock, featuring a few trippy cuts, good hard duel guitar, and great mat'l. Taken as a whole, this album is better than the sum of it's parts. Grades - 1 B+, 4 B's, 2 B-'s, and a C.
From RYM (tymeshifter)

martedì, febbraio 08, 2011

First Gear - First Gear (usa 1972 hard funk rock)

First Gear - First Gear

This is a very good early funk-rock record. The band's originals are fine examples of funked up jazz-rock. Their choice of cover songs are err, uhh, rather eclectic. They put their versions of The Hollies's "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother", Carole King's "I Feel The Earth Move" & Jerry Jeff Walker's "Mr. Bojangles" all right after each other. It was a rather weird listening experience to hear funky versions of those songs all in a row. But other than that unpleasantness, this is a fine record. Any fan of War or The Jaggerz might find this worth picking up.
From RYM (SleepObsessed)

domenica, febbraio 06, 2011

The Springfield Rifle - The Springfield Rifle (1968 psych pop)

The Springfield Rifle - The Springfield Rifle

This album is an enjoyable listen. A group of good songs with a bunch of covers. A really solid version of Will you still love me tomorrow, is probably the best track on the album. Overall these guys are good players that can sing well. There is nothing incredibly distinctive or inventive on the album, but, nonetheless, is fun to have on while hanging out with a few friends a glass of wine.
From RYM (bfazz)

sabato, febbraio 05, 2011

Lazy Day - Straight 'Atcha (us great hard rock - southern prog)

Lazy Day - Straight 'Atcha

cant get over how many obscure southern rock bands there are out there. This isnt an obscure gem but there are some good songs here worth checking out if you like the southern rock genre and want to hear something else other than the mainstream southern rock bands.
From RYM (rockyg)

venerdì, febbraio 04, 2011

Gulliver - Gulliver (1969 psych - rock)

Gulliver - Gulliver
A teenaged Daryl Hall formed this group with close friend Tim Moore back in the late 60's. They were heavily influenced by gospel and doo-wop but it didn't really show in this album, the only one they ever made. Daryl had the stronger lead voice but ironically, Tim sang most of the tracks including the sad "Angelina" which is about a blind girl who posed for the artist in the song. Go out and track down this weird HALL & OATS bootleg lp called EARLY YEARS (it has an all-brown cover, you can't miss it), it has the alternate version of "Angelina" with DARYL's lead vocal! It's superior to the lp version.

The other tracks on the album are mostly blues rockers, nothing much to holler about but it is enjoyable. Tim Moore went on to do a bunch of very good solo lps and wrote the brilliant "ROCK N ROLL LOVE LETTER" for the Bay City Rollers! He also did a version himself on one of his own lps!
From RYM (kupa99)

giovedì, febbraio 03, 2011

Hi to all of you Folks!
sorry for my delay in answering (i can't do much during this busy days), but i noticed that some of you seems to be in trouble while try to use the link on easyshare (I preferred to answer here on main page insted of each one of you separately). I don't know what's going on on easyshare, now i will try to contact ES crew, but if the problems still remaining i will provide to find other solutions (Hotfile?Fileserve?i'll trying now new solutions).Stay tuned!

1)Fixed Stonepillow post (check below, i've updated the post)

Yellow Hand - Yellow Hand (us 1970 psych west coast)

Yellow Hand - Yellow Hand

Only album by the obscure US West Coast Rock group Yellow Hand, which owes its fame to the fact that it includes six songs written by Neil Young and Steven Stills during their Buffalo Springfield days, but never actually recorded by that seminal group. Yellow Hand were a typical late 1960s US band, a sextet fronted by an able lead singer Jerry Tawney, who also wrote the original material that fills the album. Lead guitarist Pat Flynn plays some superb licks throughout the album, and the other band members supply good vocal harmonies. In retrospect the albums is as good as anything recorded at the time and the lack of success that the band met with is totally inexplicable, as it definitely deserves much more recognition, not only as the “extra Buffalo Springfield album” but very much on its own merit. Worth investigating for Classic Rock lovers and a must for Buffalo Springfield fans.
From RYM (Jazzis)

Stonepillow - Eleazar's Circus (uk 1969 psych pop)

martedì, febbraio 01, 2011

Edgewood - Ship of Labor (1972 usa great hard psych southern)

Edgewood - Ship of Labor

Every time I see the cover on this LP I marvel at the audacity some marketing folks had ... Can you imagine trying to sell an album showing manacled hands and legs in Memphis, Tennessee? In this day and age you'd probably find yourself with a riot on your hands.

Edgewood's roots are kind of interesting in that keyboardist David Beaver, bassist Steve Spear, guitarist Jim Tarbutton were all members of the Memphis based The Gentrys (albeit a late inning version of the group). Apparently increasingly bored within the pop confines imposed by The Gentrys, the three quit in 1970, promptly recruiting drummer Mike Bleecker (replaced by Joel Williams), multi-instrumentalist David Mayo, and guitarist Pat Taylor for Edgewood (named after the Memphis street Taylor was living on). The band spent several months writing, rehearsing and playing local clubs before signing with the small Memphis-based TMI label.

A quick word of warning - anyone expecting to hear a collection of Gentrys-styled garage/blue eyed soul moves is going to be in for a major shock when they hear 1972's Jimm Johnson produced "Ship of Labor". With all six band members contributing tot he album, material such as 'Why Don't You Listen', 'Unconscious Friend' and 'What You See' featured a distinctive progressive edge, though the longer and more complex song structures retained a highly commercial edge that would have sounded good on FM radio. Imagine a group like Ambrosia or perhaps Kansas with a penchant for Southern garage rock and you'll be in the right aural neighborhood. Sure, songs like the ominous title track, 'Burden of Lies' and 'Medieval People' (when's the last time you heard a Memphis band singing about the sins of Christian Crusaders) were a little bit quirky, but blessed with three strong vocalists in Beaver, Mayo and Taylor (they turned in some great harmony work on the title track and 'We Both Stand To Lose'), that was a minor drawback that could easily be overlooked. Unlike anything you'd expect to hear from a Memphis band, the whole LP is worth hearing. Personal favorite was the gorgeous ballad 'We Both Stand To Lose'. There was also an instantly obscure single: 'Ain't Had No Lovin'' b/w 'Silent' (TMI catalog number ZS7 9011).

"Ship of Labor" track listing:
(side 1)
1.) Ain't Had No Lovin' (Steve Spear - David Beaver - Pat Taylor - Jim Tarbutton - M. Blecker) -
2.) Why Don't You Listen (David Beaver - David Mayo) -
3.) Burden of Lies (Pat Taylor - David Beaver) -
4.) Ship of Labor (Steve Spear - David Beaver - Jim Tarbutton ) -

(side 2)
1.) Unconscious Friend (J. Williams - Pat Talyor) -
2.) Medieval People (David Beaver) -
3.) We Both Stand To Lose (W. Crook - Rene Crook) -
4.) What You See (Steve Spear - David Beaver) -
5.) Silent (W. Crook - David Mayo) -

Over the next year the band served as the TMI house band, while continuing to play local clubs and opening Memphis dates for national acts ranging from Jeff Beck to Deep Purple. They also recorded material for a follow-up album that was never released. Having a tough time making it financially they finally called it quits in 1972.

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