Tuesday, 30 April 2019

Deep Purple - Shades Of Deep Purple (1968)

This might upset die-hard Deep Purple fans, but I've always felt that their first two albums are rather top-heavy on cover versions. Like most bands, when they started out they played covers to fill out their live sets, but when Purple recorded their first two albums they included a lot of those songs, making up about half the playing time of each record. Considering that both records were released in the same year of 1968, I wondered what their debut would have sounded like if they'd held off releasing anything until they had enough self-penned material to fill a whole album. By removing all the covers from those first two records and rejigging the track listing, we actually have exactly enough music to make up a 45 minute disc, which more represents what the band would become with their next few releases. Two of the tracks comprised instrumental introductions to covers of The Beatles' 'We Can Work It Out' and Skip James' 'I'm So Glad', and so as I didn't want to lose them I've grafted them onto a couple of Purple's own compositions. The result is a nice variety of rockers, ballads, and instrumentals, which I feel works pretty well, and as the album could still be called 'Shades Of Deep Purple', I've used the alternative Asian version of the cover for this post, with just a bit of improvement to the band photo.  

Track listing

01 And The Address
02 Listen, Learn, Read On
03 Wring That Neck
04 Prelude - a) Happiness b) The Shield
05 One More Rainy Day
06 Love Help Me
07 Anthem
08 a) Exposition b) Mandrake Root

Enjoy / Enjoy 

Friday, 26 April 2019

Electric Light Orchestra - When Time Stood Still (1983)

Considering how long they've been around, it's surprising just how little unreleased music there is from Electric Light Orchestra. Once I'd used up the extra songs which were recorded in 1983 for my reconstruction of the proposed double album version of 'Secret Messages', there were just enough songs left over to make up one rarities record. The earliest out-take is from the 'Eldorado' sessions in 1974, and we then we skip a couple of years to 1976, where an extra song was recorded during the sessions for 'A New World Record'. 'Surrender' was actually issued as a promo single and a download on iTunes, where it managed to break into the top 100 downloads chart. In 1977 Jeff Lynne released a solo single with the help of the band, but it didn't fare that well so many people wouldn't have realised that it existed, and a couple of out-takes have since surfaced from the 'Out Of The Blue' recordings of the same year, of which 'Latitude 88 North' is a superb song. In 1980 ELO teamed up with Olivia Newton-John to provide the soundtrack to the cult film 'Xanadu', and as their songs are all excellent and have never appeared on an ELO album I'm including them here, but only the ones where it's just the band, so I'm omitting the title track, which was a duet with Olivia. 'I'm Alive' from the film was released as a single, with the extremely rare 'Drum Dreams' on the b-side, and we wind down into the early 80's with a few exclusive b-sides, including the dreamy 'When Time Stood Still'. There are a couple more b-sides from around 1986 which I could have included, but I think this 45-minute album is a nice snapshot of the decade from 1974 to 1983.     

Track listing

01 Surrender (previously unreleased promo single 1976)
02 Dark City (previously unreleased 1974)
03 Doin' That Crazy Thing (Jeff Lynne solo single (with ELO) 1977)
04 The Quick And The Daft (previously unreleased 1977)
05 Latitude 88 North (previously unreleased 1977)
06 Little Town Flirt (previously unreleased Del Shannon cover 1979)
07 I'm Alive (from the 'Xanadu' soundtrack 1980)
08 Drum Dreams (b-side of the 'I'm Alive' 12" single 1980)
09 The Fall (from the 'Xanadu' soundtrack 1980)
10 Don't Walk Away (from the 'Xanadu' soundtrack 1980)
11 All Over The World (from the 'Xanadu' soundtrack 1980)
12 Julie Don't Live Here (b-side of 'Twilight' 1981)
13 The Bouncer (b-side of 'Four Little Diamonds' 1983)
14 When Time Stood Still (b-side of 'Hold On Tight' 1981)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Slade - The Gospel According To Rasputin (1974)

Slade dominated the UK singles charts during the early 1970's, outperforming chart rivals such as Wizzard, Sweet, T. Rex, Suzi Quatro, and Mud, and achieving twelve Top 5 hit singles in the UK between 1971 and 1974, three of which went straight to number 1. No other UK act of the period enjoyed such consistency in the UK Top 40, and this feat was the closest any group had come to matching the Beatles' 22 Top 10 records in a single decade, selling more singles in the UK than any other group of the 1970's. Their first album 'Beginnings' was actually released in 1969 under the name Ambrose Slade, but was a commercial failure, as was the instrumental single 'Genesis' and its follow-up 'Wild Winds Are Blowing'. During the recording of the album they were visited by the Animals' bassist Chas Chandler, who was branching out into management, and he offered to manage them, and as Chandler had previous managerial experience with Jimi Hendrix, the band accepted. Chandler was not pleased with the debut album and thought the band would benefit from writing their own material and a change of image, so they adopted a skinhead look as an attempt to gain publicity from what was a newsworthy youth fashion trend, and they shortened their name to Slade. 
Under this name they released a new single, a cover of 'Shape of Things to Come', which also failed to chart, so Chandler moved them to Polydor Records, believing a higher-profile label would boost sales, and lyrics were added to the instrumental 'Genesis' from the band's debut album, becoming their next single 'Know Who You Are'. This single also failed to make an impression on the UK chart, and so after he'd been managing the band for almost two years without success, Chandler suggested releasing a version of the Bobby Marchan song 'Get Down and Get With It', originally performed by Little Richard, and in 1971 Slade finally got their first Top 20 hit. The band members grew their hair long and allied themselves to the glam rock movement of the early 1970's, with Hill's stage costumes becoming more and more bizarre. Chandler now demanded the band write a follow-up single themselves which led to Lea and Holder writing 'Coz I Luv You', written in half an hour, and kick-starting a writing partnership which would continue throughout Slade's career. The single reached number 1, and Slade became a household name, releasing 'Look Wot You Dun' and 'Take Me Bak 'Ome' in 1972, and from that point on they never looked back. 
Noddy Holder and Jim Lea were such a prolific songwriting partnership that nearly every single they released during that decade had an exclusive b-side, often showing a different side to the band than the foot-stomping glam rock of the A-side. Although their early singles weren't in the glam-rock style, some of them were really good songs, especially 'Wild Winds Are Blowing' and 'Know Who You Are', as well as albums tracks like 'Pouk Hill', and I'd urge you to try one of the many compilations of their early work, as they were very under-rated in their early days. This collection, however, concentrates just on the b-sides of their singles for the six years from 1969 to 1974.

Track listing

01 One Way Hotel (b-side of 'Wild Winds Are Blowing' 1969)
02 C'mom C'mon (b-side of 'Shapes Of Things To Come' 1970)
03 Do You Want Me (b-side of 'Get Down And Get With It' 1971)
04 The Gospel According To Rasputin (b-side of 'Get Down And Get With It' 1971)
05 My Life Is Natural (b-side of 'Coz I Luv You' 1971)
06 Man Who Speeks Evil (b-side of 'Mama Weer All Crazee Now' 1972)
07 Candidate (b-side of 'Look Wot You Dun' 1972)
08 I Won't Let It 'appen Agen (b-side of 'Gudbuy T' Jane' 1972)
09 Wonderin' Y (b-sdie of 'Take Me Bak 'Ome' 1972)
10 I'm Mee, I'm Now, And That's Orl (b-side of 'Cum On Feel The Noize' 1973)
11 Don't Blame Me (b-side of 'Merry Xmas Everybody' 1973)
12 My Town (b-side of 'My Friend Stan' 1973)
13 Kill 'Em At The Hot Club Tonite (b-sdie of 'Skweeze Me, Pleeze Me' 1973)
14 She Did It To Me (b-sdie of 'The Bangin' Man' 1974)
15 O.K. Yesterday Was Yesterday (b-side of 'Far Far Away' 1974)
16 So Far So Good (b-side of 'How Does It Feel?' 1974)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Colin Potter - Here (1981)

When punk died down in the early 80's and people realised that you didn't have to be a musical genius to make music, there was a huge surge in self-recorded cassettes being sold through underground magazines and word of mouth, and I was buying as many as I could get my hands on. Not every one was an undiscovered gem, and a lot of them were quite frankly rubbish, but a few names shone out, most notably Martin Newell and The Cleaners From Venus on the pop music side, via his Man At The Off Licence label, and Colin Potter with his synth-based recordings, released through his own Integrated Circuit Records label. As it was relatively easy to get hold of a synthesizer and record yourself at the keys, there was a lot off unstructured noodling released on tape, so it was good to hear that Potter also made use of sequencers, and even added in the odd burst of guitar, making his tapes stand out among the others in the same genre. He was actually an engineer, recording some of the biggest names in the underground scene, such as  Nurse With Wound, and Current 93, and he was also a musician himself, so having his own studio and the expertise of his day job, his tapes are expertly produced. I still have all of the original cassettes that I bought from him, and it was seeing another one online recently that I'd never seen before that prompted me to dig out a couple of them and play them again. 'Here' has always been a favourite, mainly for including the entrancing 29-minute 'Gas' on side two, but the other three tracks are all as good in their own way. As an original tape is nigh-on impossible to find, as although some of his cassettes were re-issued for Record Store Day in 2014, they were only in a limited edition of 60 copies, I thought I'd post it here to see if there are any fans of Tangerine Dream/Klaus Shultz/Mark Shreeve/Ian Boddy etc who hadn't heard of him, and are interested in hearing one of the best underground artists of the early 80's DIY cassette boom. If there's a positive response to this then I might post some more later, and try to get Potter's name more well known in the electronica community. 

Track listing

01 Two Feet On The Ground
02 Hear
03 Shallow Water
04 Gas

Enjoy / Enjoy

Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show - Fried Face (1974)

Casual radio listeners would remember Dr Hook for 'Sylvia’s Mother',  'The Cover Of The Rolling Stone', or 'When You’re In Love With A Beautiful Woman', but they were much more than just a novelty act, and produced some other great songs which were hidden away on their albums. Those causal listeners, however, would probably not have heard of the band's proposed fourth album 'Fried Face'. Songs which were recorded during the sessions for their first three records were considered for the fourth, and a cassette was complied, which has since leaked onto the net, and a vinyl copy was even issued in Holland, from which I've taken the cover. ‘Rain’ is a great early Shel Silverstein song that was recorded for the first album, as was ‘February Snow’, while ‘Monkey Gruntin’' was made up in the studio during the 'Sloppy Seconds' sessions, and ‘I Won’t Be Following You’ was one of a few songs demoed at Roy Chen's studio in Chinatown. ‘Someone To Talk To’ (aka ‘Nobody Hear’) was another Silverstein song, and possibly the first ecology song written in pop music. The project got as far as being given a CBS catalogue number, but in the end it never appeared, and the band's fourth album ended up being the 'Ballad Of Lucy Jordan' compilation. Because no acetates were ever made, and the only recordings were on cassette, it means that there are audio dropouts from time to time, but unfortunately these are the best versions that can be found online, and while some of these songs could be considered throwaways, there's enough good stuff on here to warrant a listen. The title of the album was taken from a conversation Ray Sawyer and Dennis Locorriere had during the ‘Belly Up’ sessions that, in part, goes something like -
‘What do you like to eat?’
‘What’s your favorite part?’
‘The face… fried face!’

Track listing

01 Three Little Fishes
02 Long Tall Texan
03 February Snow
04 The Loneliest People 
05 Nobody Hears What I Say
06 Cops & Robbers
07 Rain
08 Long Hair
09 Hey Little Lady
10 The Ballad Of Lucy Jordan
11 Monkey Gruntin’
14 High Flying Eagle
13 The Millionaire 

Enjoy / Enjoy

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

The Olivers - Social Slavery (1969)

In 1962, 12 year old guitar players Mike Mankey and Billy Franze got together and started playing music in Fort Worth, Indiana, eventually locating bass player Jerry Vachon and drummer Bob Goodwin, and putting a band together called The Shadows. They practiced once a week in Mike’s bedroom, and after a year or so, they'd learned to play R & B songs from the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, as well as popular songs from the radio. Also in Fort Wayne, Chuck Hamrick and Jay Penndorf were part of a band called The Serfmen, who played mainly surf music, but  they wanted to move into doing their own versions of R & B songs, and this caused the band to split up, with Hamrick and Penndorf retaining the band name. With the addition of two new members, The Serfmen recorded a single which was a local hit, and The Shadows started to cover it in their set, leading to the two bands meeting up. Hamrick and Penndorf were impressed with Franze's guitar and vocal style, and needing a new bass player they invited him to join their band, as long as he could play bass, which Franze readily agreed to. Around 1965 The Serfmen decided to revamp their style, and, based on the British Invasion, they changed their name to The Olivers and began dressing in 19th Century style English stage outfits, and after some local success they even recorded a single 'I Saw What You Did/Beeker Street' in 1966. When Penndorf was drafted into the military, Franze contacted his old friend Mankey and invited him to join the band, which, with the addition of Rick Durrett on keyboards, spent the next couple of years touring and opening for acts like The Hollies, The Who, Blue Cheer and Jefferson Airplane. 
By the time Penndorf returned from the army in 1968, the band had evolved into a more psychedelic style of music, and in 1969 they went into Dove Recording Studio in Bloomington, Minnesota with producer Pete Steinberg, and spent a week recording an album of original songs. A rough mix of seven songs was completed, and through Steinberg's connections with Sire Records, they expressed an interest in putting out the album on their label. However, the planned album never appeared on Sire, and was never released on any label. The band members returned to Fort Wayne with no tapes and no acetates of their Dove recording sessions, and  Penndorf and Durrett left the band, leaving Franze, Mankey and Hamrick to carry on as a three piece under the name of Triad. The album did eventually get a limited release in 2012 on the German Break-A-Way label, but it really deserves more than that, as there are some superb songs on here, most notably the two extended pieces 'Jessica Ryder' and the title track. I've added in the b-side of their 1966 single to make the album up to 40 minutes, and changed the title from 'The Lost Dove Sessions', which was a bit boring, but I can guarantee that the music is anything but. 

Track listing.

01 Ball Of Fire
02 Mushroom
03 Beeker Street
04 Jessica Ryder
05 Someday Somewhere
06 The End
07 Free
08 Social Slavery

Enjoy / Enjoy

Friday, 19 April 2019

Paul McCartney & Wings - Junior's Farm (1975)

During late 1973 and through to 1975 Paul McCartney and the band recorded a number of songs destined for one-off singles, b-sides, or projects that were later shelved, and the best of them are gather here. 'Proud Mum' was recorded during the 'Venus And Mars' sessions, and was originally intended to be used in a Mother's Pride bread advert, but I think it nicely book-ends this album. 'Junior's Farm' was one of their best singles, and yet it's never appeared on any album other than Greatest Hits collections, while the b-side 'Sally G' was McCartney's attempt at a credible country song. This led to a challenge for Denny Laine to write a country song as well, and with a little help from McCartney he came up with 'Send Me The Heart'. In late 1973 the band recorded a number of songs which were to be the basis of a Linda McCartney solo album, under the name of Suzy And The Red Stripes. 'Seaside Woman' was completed and released as a single, and was also intended for inclusion on the double album version of 'Red Rose Speedway', before if was removed when that album was slimmed down to a single record. Also recorded at those sessions were 'Luxy' (a tribute to Radio Luxembourg?), 'Oriental Nightfish', 'I Got Up', and an eleven minute take of 'Wide Prairie'. All of these songs eventually appeared on the posthumous Linda McCartney album 'Wide Prairie' in 1998, while 'Oriental Nightfish' was also used as the soundtrack to an animated film of the same name in 1978. 'Soily' was often performed during their concerts, usually as an encore, but the version here is a rare studio take, and 'Zoo Gang' was written as the theme tune to a UK crime drama TV series, and also turned up as the b-side of the 'Band On The Run' single. All in all this is a great collection of rare and hard to find songs from the peak period of the band's popularity. 

Track listing

01 Proud Mum (previously unrleased 1975)
02 Junior's Farm (single 1974)
03 Oriental Nightfish (Suzy & The Red Stripes sessions 1973)
04 Luxy (Suzy & The Red Stripes sessions 1973)
05 Wide Prairie (Suzy & The Red Stripes sessions 1973)
06 Sally G (b-side of 'Junior's Farm')
07 One Hand Clapping (previously unrleased 1974)
08 I Got Up (Suzy & The Red Stripes sessions 1973)
09 Soily (previously unrleased 1974)
10 Zoo Gang (b-side of 'Band On The Run' 1973)
11 Send Me The Heart (previously unreleased 1974)
12 Going To New Orleans (My Carnival) (previously unreleased 1975)
13 Proud Mum (Reprise) (previously unreleased 1975)

Phish - The Victor Disc (2002)

'The Victor Disc' was recorded by Phish at an impromptu jam session in New York City the night before the band's December 2002 appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman. It came between the release of 'Round Room' and Phish's return to the stage on New Year's Eve 2002 after a two-and-a-half year break, and provides an intimate glimpse of the band in a stripped down, unpolished studio setting. The story goes that while the band were in New York to appear on The Late Show With David Letterman, Anastasio and McConnell popped into a downtown recording studio sometime after midnight, decided to play, and phoned Fishman and Gordon back at the hotel to ask them to come down and join in. Phish then taped an hour and a half of spontaneous playing, decided on a title (naming it after the engineer who oversaw the session), and came up with a cover idea. The album has never been officially released, but parts of it soon leaked on the internet, and it's circulated widely among fans ever since. Later versions often include four additional tracks that appear to be part of the raw session recordings, from which the album tracks were extracted, and this post includes all 10 of those tracks. As much as I love the band, even I wouldn't say that this is among their best work, but for Phish fans it's a must hear, as it shows them in their favourite environment, improvising in a relaxed atmosphere and just having fun.

Track listing

01 Lazy And Red
02 Den Of Iniquity
03 Bubble Wrap
04 Sky Train Wand
05 Blue Over Yellow
06 Guantanamo Strut
07 Victor Jam Session
08 35 Minute Jam
09 Heartache
10 Last Victor Jam

Enjoy / Enjoy

Earth And Fire - Memories (1976)

Earth and Fire originated with Dutch brothers Chris and Gerard Koerts, who'd made music together since the early 60's. They played in local bands around 1963/64, and in 1965 they formed The Swinging Strings and began covering hits by the Beatles, the Byrds, and others. By 1967 the brothers were dissatisfied with playing cover music and were looking to increase the technical level of their music, so they renamed the band Opus Gainfull, and started searching for a new rhythm section. They found bass player Hans Ziech and drummer Cees Kalis in local band The Soul, and once they joined the new band they recruited guitar player Eric Wenink. Throughout 1968 and 1969 the band practiced their new sound, influenced by Jimi Hendrix, Moby Grape, and Jefferson Airplane. They added singer Manuela Berloth to complete the line-up, and began coming up with ideas for concept albums, centred around the US West Coast and their improvisational practice sessions. In 1968 the band changed their name again to Earth and Fire, and after winning a talent contest they were allowed to record two songs as their prize, although it didn't lead to a recording contract, and shortly afterwards Berloth left the band. She was replaced in 1969 by Jerney Kaagman, and their recording career began in earnest.
Their first album 'Earth and Fire' was released in 1970 and produced three hit singles, while subsequent releases were the concept albums that they'd though about in those early days. Their music was well-produced and easily accessible and so they were very popular in the UK, with all of their early albums becoming highly sought after by fans of progressive rock. They continued to release singles throughout the 70's, either taken from the albums or as releases in their own right. They also treated fans to non-album tracks on the b-sides of some of them, and so I've collected a number of the best of these b-sides and non-album singles for this post. It's a great snapshot of the band, as it includes some of their pop songs and also some fine examples of their progressive rock side, so if you haven't heard of the band before then prepare to be impressed by some superb Dutch rock music.

Track listing

01 Seasons (single 1969)
02 Hazy Paradise (b-side of 'Seasons')
03 Mechanical Lover (b-side of 'Ruby Is The One' 1970)
04 Invitation (single 1971)
05 Song Of The Marching Children (b-side of 'Invitation')
06 Lost Forever (b-side of 'Storm And Thunder' 1971)
07 Memories (single 1972)
08 From The End Till The Beginning (b-side of 'Memories')
09 Tuffy The Cat (b-side of 'Love Of Life' 1974)
10 Fun (b-side of 'Only Time Will Tell' 1975)
11 Thanks For The Love (single 1975)
12 What Difference Does It Make (single 1976)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Aphex Twin - The Joyrex Tape (1994)

It's been a while since I posted any weird electronic stuff, so here's another unreleased album from Aphex Twin. 'The Joyrex Tape' is the name given to a collection of unreleased tracks from the early 1990's recorded by Richard D. James. The original tape was copied from one of James' DATs sometime in the 1990's and was leaked onto the internet in 2011 after it was reportedly found during a house party. Richard D. James had apparently passed out, and one of the guests went into James' room and made a copy of one of his DATs. Since it was hastily copied, the sound quality is poor and it plays at the wrong speed, and subsequent copying has further degraded the clarity. The existence of the tape was rumored for some time until the We Are The Music Makers forum administrator Joyrex put up short snippets of the tracks, explaining the origins of the tape and his eventual possession of a copy. Contrary to common belief, Joyrex did not leak the tracks online even though his name has become it's title, but it's referred to as The Joyrex Tape since it was he who verified its existence with his audio samples, and via his communication with Richard D. James at the time. Tracks 1–6, 8-9, 13, and 14 were uploaded to SoundCloud in early 2015 by James himself, while track 7 is a demo version of 'Praze-An-Beeble Mix', which was subsequently released on the Ventolin EP. As I downloaded the entire SoundCloud dump in 2015, I'm able to use those versions of the tracks that I could locate, although couldn't find tracks 6 or 13. I've also speed-corrected and EQ'd the others so that they all play at a speed nearer to the SoundCloud versions, and hopefully in a clearer sound quality. 

Track listing

01 Fresher + Cleaner
02 How To Science 2
03 Step Up To Cornwall
04 Clapstab
05 World Waver
06 Gear Smudge
07 Ventolin (Praze-An-Beeble Mix)
08 Phlangebeat
09 Phuqed Up
10 [unknown]
11 [unknown]
12 [unknown]
13 Rogphlange 1[braiNfLOSS2]
14 DroneBReak

The Joyrex Tape doesn't include track titles, so the ones above are taken from the SoundCloud uploads.

Enjoy / Enjoy

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Timebox - Moose On The Loose (1969)

When I was posting my series of Rutles albums, a number of the songs included on them came from Timebox, which was because drummer John Hasley played Barry Wom in the original film, and guitarist Ollie Halsall was part of the band which Neil Innes put together to play the songs. Timebox themselves had something of a chquered career, starting out as The Take 5 in 1965, and including vibraphone player/guitarist Peter 'Ollie' Halsall, Chris Holmes on keyboards, lead guitarist and vocalist Kevan Fogarty,  Clive Griffths on bass, and drummer Geoff Dean. The band turned professional in 1966, and after moving to London soon found work on package tours with The Kinks, The Small Faces, Tommy Quickly, and Lou Christie. In 1967 they added US singer Richard Henry, changed their name to Timebox (an American term for a prison cell), and after signing to Piccadilly Records they released their debut single 'I'll Always Love You'/'Save Your Love'. Following this, Henry returned to the United States, and when Geoff Dean contracted tuberculosis he was replaced by Andy Petre on drums. This line-up released the instrumental single 'Soul Sauce'/'I Wish I Could Jerk Like My Uncle Cyril', before they recruited Mike 'Patto' McCarthy as vocalist and songwriter, and when Petre quit, the drum stool was filled by John Halsey. This is the line-up that recorded their best music, which has since built them a reputation as being one of the best, but also the most unappreciated, bands of the late 60's.
They recorded five singles for Piccadilly and Deram between 1967 and 1969, but their only UK Singles chart entry was with their cover version of The Four Seasons' track 'Beggin'', which peaked at number 38 in July 1968. After their last single failed in 1970, Chris Holmes left and the remaining members continued under the name Patto, releasing a string of acclaimed albums throughout the early 70's. In 1976 a compilation album entitled 'The Original Moose On The Loose' appeared on an obscure label, which collected all of their later singles with Patto as lead vocalist, but it didn't include other songs recorded at the same time which might have been destined for an album that could have been released in 1969. In 2018 the Ollie Halsall website posted news that an album was to be released using songs recorded in 1968/1969, entitled 'Moose On The Loose', and a proposed track listing was published, with downloadable links to the songs. However, nothing has since turned up, so using that track listing and adding a couple of contemporary songs to make it nearer the 40-minute mark, this is what Timebox could have released in 1969 as their debut album. Thanks to the Ollie Halsall archive for the info and the great cover.

Track listing 

01 Yellow Van
02 Tree House
03 Poor Little Heartbreaker
04 Baked Jam Roll In Your Eye
05 Black Dog
06 Country Dan & City Lil
07 Eddie McHenry
08 Barnabus Swain
09 Promises
10 Stay There
11 You've Got The Chance
12 Timebox
13 Love The Girl
14 Gone Is The Sad Man  

Enjoy / Enjoy

Friday, 12 April 2019

Tyrannosaurus Rex - Kings Of The Rumbling Spires (1969)

Although I grew up listening to the classic T Rex singles like 'Metal Guru', Hot Love', and 'Jeepster', when I really started to get into music in the mid 70's I went backwards into the band's career and discovered Tyrannosaurus Rex - the folk duo of Marc Bolan and Steve Peregrine-Took. The music was a world away from the glam rock of a few years later, but it was none-the-less captivating, and I had soon acquired their first four Regal Zonophone albums, which I played continuously. I also picked up the Music For Pleasure cheapo compilation 'Ride A White Swan', which amazingly included some songs that weren't available on their albums, including the superb 'King Of The Rumbling Spires'. Seeing that over the years those records had been reissued many, many times, I thought that I'd check them out to see if any other rare songs had been added as bonus tracks, and was amazed to find  enough to fill a forty minute album, and so here they all are. 'Sarah Crazy Child' was first recorded by John's Children, but this is a later take by Tyrannosaurus Rex, while 'Find A Little Wood' was actually recorded at the same 'King Of The Rumbling Spires' sessions as 'Demon Queen' and 'Ill Starred Man', but was used as the b-side to 'By The Light Of The Magical Moon' the following year. A number of the 1967 demos later appeared on 'The Beginning Of Doves' in 1974, and by adding in a few non-album singles and their b-sides, we end up with a credible late-60's Tyrannosaurus Rex album. The cover is based on the one for 'Prophets, Seers And Sages...'. but using an alternative colour shot from the same photo session.

Track listing

01 Rings Of Fortune (demo 1967)
02 Sarah Crazy Child (demo 1967)
03 Lunacy's Back (demo 1967)
04 Beyond The Rising Son (demo 1967)
05 Misty Mist (Highways) (demo 1967)
06 One Inch Rock (demo 1967)
07 Sleepy Maurice (demo 1968)
08 Jasper C Debussey (proposed single 1966)
09 The Beginning Of Doves (demo 1967)
10 Sally Was An Angel (demo 1967)
11 Pewter Suitor (single 1969)
12 Do You Remember (b-side of 'King Of The Rumbling Spires')
13 King Of The Rumbling Spires (single 1969)
14 Ill Starred Man (from 'King Of The Rumbling Spires' sessions 1969)
15 Once Upon The Seas Of Abyssinia (from 'King Of The Rumbling Spires' sessions 1969)
16 Demon Queen (from 'King Of The Rumbling Spires' sessions 1969)
17 Blessed Wild Apple Girl (from 'King Of The Rumbling Spires' sessions 1969)
18 Find A Little Wood (b-side of 'By The Light Of The Magical Moon' 1970)

Enjoy / Enjoy

New Order - The First Movement (1981)

New Order’s 1981 debut has never quite shaken off the tragic circumstances surrounding its creation. Still grieving from the suicide of singer Ian Curtis, the surviving members of Joy Division were also fighting bitterly with producer Martin Hannett, by now a serious drug casualty who made his contempt for the new group’s raw talents very plain. However, before Hannett took over the production of 'Movement' the band had recorded a number of demos, some of which were laid down in a few hours at Cabaret Voltaire’s Western Works in Sheffield in September 1980, when they were still a trio with no clear lead singer. Featuring all three band members on lead vocals, with interjections from manager Rob Gretton and Cabs co-founder Stephen Mallinder, the session yielded a rowdy early version of New Order’s debut single 'Ceremony', plus a couple of other songs which would later be re-recorded for 'Movement'. They also recorded a dozen or so demos at Cargo studios in Rochdale and in the band’s North Manchester rehearsal space, and songs such as 'Senses' and 'Procession' have a thrilling, biting rawness, making you wonder if this is what the band could have sounded like, with more of the visceral heavy-rock muscle that Hook and Sumner always pushed for against the unyielding Hannett. With the songs stripped of Hannett's overbearing production, they sound warmer and more accessible, and while they might not be as crisp and clear as we're use to hearing, it doesn't detract from the songs themselves. So using all of the Cargo demos and a couple of those from Western Works, we have an album that could have been released in 1980, instead of waiting a year for Hannett to get his act together and for the band to re-record the songs under his direction. I'm not saying that it's better than the official version, but it's certainly different enough for us to wonder what path their career could have taken if this verion of the album had been released instead, and they'd forged a path of lo-fi indie rock rather than later branching out into the dance scene with 'Temptation' and 'Blue Monday'.  

Track listing

01 Dreams Never End
02 Truth
03 Senses
04 Chosen Time
05 ICB
06 The Him
07 Doubts Even Here
08 Procession
09 The Mesh
10 Ceremony
11 Homage

Paul McCartney & Wings - C Moon (1973)

As I mentioned in the 'Red Rose Speedway' post, once we'd worked which songs were going to be included on that proposed double album, we could then take all the other out-takes, non-albums singles and b-sides, and compile them into a couple of nice little collections. 'Hi Hi Hi' / 'C Moon' was released as a 7" single in 1972, but radio stations became a bit uneasy about playing a song with 'high' in the lyrics, so they flipped it over and started playing the b-side, resulting in 'C Moon' becoming a surprise number 2 hit single for the band. 'Walking In The Park With Eloise' / 'Bridge Over The River Suite' was released as a 7" single in 1974 by The Country Hams, who were in fact Wings, plus a couple of guest musicians on the b-side. Both tracks were instrumentals, and not really in the normal style of Wings' other material, so McCartney issued them under a pseudonym, just as he did with the 'Percy 'Thrills' Thrillington' album some  years later. 'Live And Let Die' is a classic Bond theme, and one of the best ever attached to the films, but the version I've used for this album is by just the band, with no orchestral overdubs, and I think it fits in so perfectly with the rest of the album that you hardly notice the lack of strings. 
'Jazz Street' and '1882' were originally intended for 'Red Rose Speedway', but there were just too many songs under consideration for the final track listing, and so these two had to be left off the proposed double album version of that release. '1882' was going to be a live version of a song that had been hanging around since 1970 but never properly recorded, but as I can hear no audience noise on this version it sounds to me like it might be the rumoured studio recording from January 1972. 'The Great Cock And Seagull Race' was another old song, recorded during the 'Ram' sessions, and was originally planned to be the b-side of the 'Hi Hi Hi' single, but it was replaced at the last minute by 'C Moon', and 'Little Woman Love' was another song recorded during the 'Ram' sessions, and released two years later as the b-side to 'Mary Had A Little Lamb'. 'Give Ireland Back To The Irish' was the band's debut single in 1972, and you might be hearing it for the first time here, as although it breached the top 20 in the UK, US audiences felt alienated by the overtly political stance, and airplay was so marginal that it was in effect banned from US radio. 'Helen Wheels', named after Paul and Linda's Land Rover, was much more successful, hitting number 12 in the UK, and although it was included on the US edition of their 1973 album 'Band On The Run', in the UK it remained a stand-alone single.

Track listing

01 C Moon (single 1972)
02 Jazz Street (previously unreleased 1972)
03 1882 (previously unreleased 1972)
04 Walking In The Park With Eloise (single 1974)
05 Hi Hi Hi (single 1972)
06 Bridge On The River Suite (b-side of 'Walking In The Park With Eloise')
07 Helen Wheels (single 1973)
08 Mary Had A Little Lamb (single 1972)
09 Live And Let Die (single 1973)
10 Little Woman Love (b-side of 'Mary Had A Little Lamb')
11 The Great Cock And Seagull Race (previously unreleased 1970)
12 Give Ireland Back To The Irish (single 1972)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Ten Years After - The Sounds (1972)

I put this album together to collect some hard to find songs by Ten Years After, as I'd always loved tracks like 'Going To Try', 'Love Like A Man' and 'No Title' and wondered if there was any rare stuff tucked away online. After I'd uncovered a number of rare songs I had a look online to put some notes together to accompany them, and was surprised to discover that the 'Alvin Lee And Company' album from 1972 was actually a compilation including a lot of these songs, whereas from the title I'd always assumed that it was a collection of collaborations with other artists. Consequently I'd never heard it, but having now seen the track listing I decided to carry on with this post, as I'd included the original 'Spider In My Web' which was re-recorded for the Deram album, and as 'Standing At The Crossroads' later turned up on the extended re-issue of 'Undead', I've omitted that and replaced it with some other out-takes from the debut album and 'Cricklewood Green' sessions, plus a couple of tracks from sessions in Cap Ferret in 1972, completely forgotten until they were unearthed recently for a retrospective box-set. It's quite a mixture of styles, from the early psyche-pop of 'Portable People', to the experimental 'The Sounds', the pure blues of 'Spider In Your Web', and the jazzy 'Woodchopper's Ball', all showcasing Alvin Lee's dazzling guitar-work, but it also shows the different aspects of the band's repertoire, and proves that their reputation isn't just built on that famous live performance of 'I'm Going Home'. 

Track listing

01 Portable People (single 1968)
02 The Sounds (b-side of 'Portable People')
03 Rock Your Mama (single 1968)
04 Spider In My Web (b-side of 'Rock Your Mama')
05 Hold Me Tight (previously unreleased 1968)
06 Woodchopper's Ball (previously unreleased 1968)
07 Holy Shit (The Cap Ferret Sessions 1972)
08 If You Should Love Me (b-side of 'Love Like A Man' 1970)
09 Warm Sun (previously unreleased 1970)
10 To No One (previously unreleased 1970)
11 Look At Yourself (The Cap Ferret Sessions 1972)

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Files deleted

Mega and Zippyshare have taken down some of my files, so I'm sorting out an alternative host.

Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Miles Davis - The Black Album (2003)

I love a bit of jazz now and then, with my favourite period being the early 50's through to around 1963, but if there's one artist that I've followed throughout his whole career it's Miles Davis, from 'Birth Of The Cool' right through to 'Bitches Brew' and beyond. In 2001 Warner Brothers were working on a boxed set that was to include everything Davis had recorded in the studio during his time with the company (1985-1991) including many previously unreleased studio outtakes and some particularly noteworthy live material from the same era. The box was to be called 'The Last Word', and was initially earmarked for release on Rhino Records in September 2001, to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Miles’s death. However, this date was missed and it was rescheduled for August 2002, before Rhino pulled 'The Last Word' from rotation stating: “We deeply regret the fact that we will not be releasing the Miles Davis box set on August 20. Our commitment has always been to offer consumers the best possible audio and video products for the best possible value. Due to developing circumstances beyond our control, we felt that this box set would not, in its finished form, meet our standards, or the standards our customers expect from our products'. 
Gradually the 6-CD set shriveled to just 4 CDs, including very little previously unreleased material, which had been kind of the main point of the set. There must still have been a real belief in getting it out, because under huge time pressure Bill Milkowski completed new liner notes in just four days, and some CD-R review copies were sent out, without art work. Then some time in 2002 the release was quietly abandoned altogether. Officially no reasons were given. In the meantime, the Japanese Legendary Collection Series released 'The Black Album', a two-CD compilation featuring some of the unreleased tracks from the aborted 'The Last Word' album, plus other unreleased tracks. On October 18 2010, Warner released the two-CD compilation 'Perfect Way: The Warner Bros Years', which included three previously unreleased live tracks - 'Portia', 'Carnival' and 'Human Nature' - from the 1986 Nice Jazz Festival, and two unreleased studio tracks - 'Digg That' and 'Rubberband' - from the much talked-about 'Rubberband' sessions, recorded just after Davis signed to Warners in 1985, and featuring keyboardist Adam Holzman, Vince Wilburn Jr on drums and Steve Reid on percussion. 
When these tracks appeared on official releases, the main source of this bootleg deleted them from their download, so I thought that I'd piece the album back together so that you can hear the full 2xCD release as it first appeared in 2003. I've done a little editing to the second CD so that it sounds like one complete gig, even though the recordings are from different periods, but unfortunately the final track was incomplete so has to fade early. There's only a poor quality scan of the cover available online, so I've recreated it based on the original, but I've left the online copy of the back cover in the file.

Track listing

Disc 1
01 Maze (Record Plant Studio, New York City, USA, September 23, 1985)
02 Rubberband (Unknown Studio, Los Angeles, USA, October 17, 1985)
03 See I See (Ameraycan Studio, Hollywood, USA, January 1986)
04 Digg That (Sunset Sound Recorders, Hollywood, USA, December 21, 1987)
05 Street Smart (Unknown Studio, Los Angeles, USA, October 1986)
06 Time Square (Unknown Studio, Los Angeles, USA, October 1986)
07 Punchy’s Theme (Unknown Studio, Los Angeles, USA, October 1986)
08 It Gets Better (Record Plant Studio, New York City, USA, January 5, 1983)
09 Red Riding Hood (Capitol Recording Studio, Los Angeles, USA, May 1, 1986)

Disc 2
10 One Phone Call / Street Scenes / Speak (Live at Jardin des Arenes de Cimiez, Nice July 20, 1986)
11 Time After Time (Live at Jardin des Arenes de Cimiez, Nice July 20, 1986)
12 Portia (Live at The Casino, Montreux, Switzerland, July 17, 1986)
13 Tutu (Live at Chelsea Studios, New York City October 18, 1989)
14 Mr Pastorius (Live at Chelsea Studios, New York City October 18, 1989)
15 Hannibal (Live at Chelsea Studios, New York City October 18, 1989)
16 Come And Get It (Live at Jones Beach Theatre, New York City August 28, 1982)
17 U ‘n’ I (Live at Jones Beach Theatre, New York City August 28, 1982)


Monday, 8 April 2019

The Answer...

Jay was close with his guess, but here's the answer to the teaser.

If you still want to try to have a go then download the other file before this one.

The Answer

Saturday, 6 April 2019

A birthday puzzle for you......

The site is one year old today, and I guess you know by now that I have way too much spare time on my hands, so I've put together a little birthday puzzle for you. Download the file, listen to the great music, and then see if you can work out what links them all together. 

When you've worked it out then you can download the full album, with cover and full track-listing, that I'll post in a few days. Have fun.

Friday, 5 April 2019

Cream - Double Cream (1966)

By July 1966, Eric Clapton's career with the Yardbirds and John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers had earned him a reputation as the premier blues guitarist in Britain, but latterly he found the environment of Mayall's band confining, and sought to expand his playing in a new band. Ginger Baker was also feeling stifled as leader of the leader of the Graham Bond Organisation, and was becoming increasingly frustrated with Graham Bond's drug addictions and bouts of mental instability. Each was impressed with the other's playing abilities, prompting Baker to ask Clapton to join his new, then-unnamed group. Clapton immediately agreed, on the condition that Baker hire Baker's old Graham Bond Organisation band-mate Jack Bruce as the group's bassist. Clapton had also played with Bruce in the past, and having been impressed by his vocals, he wanted to work with him on an ongoing basis. Baker and Bruce had a volatile relationship while playing together in Bond's band, but they agreed to put aside their differences for the good of Baker's new trio, which he envisioned as a collaborative effort, with each of the members contributing to music and lyrics. The band was named Cream, as Clapton, Bruce, and Baker were already considered the 'cream of the crop' amongst their peers. 
Initially, the group were billed as The Cream, but starting officially with their first record releases the trio became known as Cream. The band's debut album, 'Fresh Cream', was recorded and released in 1966, and was evenly split between self-penned originals and blues covers, including 'Four Until Late', 'Rollin' and Tumblin'', and 'Spoonful'. The rest of the songs were written by either Jack Bruce or Ginger Baker, with his 'Toad' containing one of the earliest examples of a drum solo in rock music, as Baker expanded upon his 1965 composition 'Camels and Elephants'. This extended version of that debut album includes alternate mixes and masters of a number of songs which were released on a couple of French EP's in 1966, alongside a number of out-takes from the original sessions, the non-album UK single 'I Feel Free', some rare BBC sessions, a commercial for Falstaff Beer recorded in Sweden in 1967, and a couple of takes of 'Lawdy Mama', the second of which is obviously the inspiration for their own 'Strange Brew'. There's was almost enough material recorded in 1966 for their debut to be a double album, hence the title, so enjoy this alternate look at the early days of a classic band, mostly recorded in glorious mono for that authentic feel. 

Track listing

01 Lawdy Mama (version 1)
02 Sweet Wine (French EP version)
03 Spoonful Part I (single 1967)
04 Spoonful Part II (single 1967)
05 Cat's Squirrel (French EP version)
06 Four Until Late (French EP version)
07 Rollin' And Tumblin' (French EP version)
08 I'm So Glad (French EP version)
09 Sleepy Time Time (BBC session)
10 The Coffee Song (album out-take)
11 Toad (early version)
12 Wrapping Paper (French EP version)
13 Beauty Queen (previously unreleased)
14 Crossroads (BBC session)
15 You Make Me Feel (previously unreleased)
16 Train Time (BBC session)
17 Falstaff Beer Commercial
18 I Feel Free (single)
19 N.S.U. (b-side of 'I Feel Free')
20 Lawdy Mama (version 2)
21 Steppin' Out (BBC session)


Manfred Mann's Earth Band - To The Limit (2006)

This companion to the earlier 'Can't Eat Meat' post is made of previously unreleased songs which have since turned up on box sets and reissues, and which are mostly from the period 1987 to 1996, although a couple are earlier and a couple are later. Overall, though, this is a nice collection of later-period music from this well-respected band.

Track listing 

01 Pretty Good (from the US only album 'Get Your Rocks Off' 1973)
02 Quit Your Low Down Ways (from the US version of 'Nightingales & Bombers' 1975)
03 Summer In The City (previously unreleased 1987)
04 Salmon Fishing (previously unreleased 1992)
05 All Through The Night (previously unreleased 1988)
06 Better Place (previously unreleased 1996)
07 Lead Me To Water (previously unreleased 1993)
08 To The Limit (previously unreleased 1993)
09 Don't Let Me Down (previously unreleased 1991)
10 Hillbrow (previously unreleased 2006)