Friday, 29 May 2020

The Wailers - Catch A Fire (1973)

In 1971 Bob Marley moved to Sweden to work with Johnny Nash, writing and composing songs for the soundtrack to the film 'Want So Much To Believe'. At the end of the year Marley and the Wailers toured Great Britain with Nash, but when the tour was over Marley and the band didn't have funds to return to Jamaica, nor could they earn money due to work-permit restrictions. The band asked promoter Brent Clarke to help them, and he contacted Chris Blackwell from Island Records, who had released singles by the Wailers in the UK. Blackwell promised Clarke an advance of £8,000.00 for their next album, so Clarke lent the Wailers some money to return to Jamaica. Once back in Jamaica sessions for the album started, with recording taking place at three different studios in Kingston, Jamaica: Dynamic Sound, Harry J's and Randy's. In the winter of 1972 Marley flew back to London to present the master tapes, but the deal with Island led to a dispute with CBS, to whom the band were already contracted, and a court case soon followed. Island Records won the case, receiving $9,000.00 and two percent of royalties from the band's first six albums, and so the stage was set for the first UK release of a Bob Marley And The Wailers album. However, when Blackwell heard the tapes he insisted that more work was needed on the songs, and took over as producer, adding overdubbed guitar from Wayne Perkins. Blackwell also tweaked arrangements and adjusted mixes, rolling back some of the heavier bass-end parts and generally moulding the sound into a shape that remained true to the band’s roots, but which would also sit comfortably in the mainstream rock marketplace of the day. It seemed to work, and the album took off in the UK, introducing reggae to a massive new audience, and it remains one of the greatest reggae albums of all time. It was given a deluxe re-issue in 2001, and as a bonus we were treated to our first hearing of the un-edited takes of the songs, as recorded in Jamaica, and with no overdubs. So for anyone who missed that re-issue, or never even knew that the album that they love has an rough-edged cousin, then here is the original Jamaican version of it, including two songs which were dropped from the UK issue. 



Track listing

01 Concrete Jungle
02 Stir It Up
03 High Tide Or Low Tide
04 Stop That Train
05 400 Years
06 Baby We've Got A Date (Rock It Baby)
07 Midnight Ravers
08 All Day All Night
09 Slave Driver
10 Kinky Reggae
11 No More Trouble

Enjoy / Enjoy

Rory Gallagher - ...and on guitar (1978)

William Rory Gallagher was born in Ballyshannon, County Donegal in 1948, and bought his first guitar at age 12, performing in his adolescence with both his acoustic and an electric guitar. However, it was a 1961 Fender Stratocaster, which he purchased three years later for £100, that became his primary instrument and was most associated with him during his career. He was initially attracted to skiffle after hearing Lonnie Donegan on the radio, and while still in school he played songs by Buddy Holly and Eddie Cochran, before discovering his greatest influence in Muddy Waters. In 1963, he joined a showband named Fontana, a sextet playing the popular hit songs of the day, and toured Ireland and the UK with them, earning money for the payments that were due on his Stratocaster. Gallagher began to influence the band's repertoire, and by 1965 he had eventually moulded them into an R&B group, with a new name of The Impact. After leaving The Impact in 1966 Gallagher formed a blues-rock trio called The Taste, later shortened to Taste, which lasted until they broke up in 1970. Gallagher then embarked on a long and extremely successful solo career, releasing many well-received albums, and touring extensively. During this period he was invited to play with many of his childhood heroes, contributing guitar to albums by Lonnie Donnegan, Muddy Waters and Jerry Lee Lewis. He also played on fellow Irishman Joe O'Donnell's 1977 concept jazz-fusion album 'Gaodhal's Vision', and Mike Batt's 'Tarot Suite', another concept album from 1978. His first guest appearance was on Mike Vernon's debut blues album from 1971, where Vernon managed to get both Gallagher and Paul Kossoff to provide guitar solos for his record. Also in 1971 he guested on a couple of recordings by Chris Barber, which were later compiled onto a retrospective of the renowned jazz/bluesman, but it was the recordings with Waters and Donnegan (on his last album) of which Gallagher was reportedly most proud.   



Track listing

01 Come Back Baby (from 'Bring It Back Home' by Mike Vernon 1971)
02 Drat The Frattle Rat (from 'The Outstanding Album' by Chris Barber 1971)
03 Sleepy Lovie (from 'The Outstanding Album' by Chris Barber 1971)
04 Music To The Man (from 'The Session' by Jerry Lee Lewis 1973)
05 Juke Box (from 'The Session' by Jerry Lee Lewis 1973)
06 Hard Days (from 'London Revisited' by Muddy Waters & Howlin' Wolf 1974)
07 Poets And Storytellers (from 'Gaodhal's Vision' by Joe O'Donnell  1977)
08 Rock Island Line (from 'Putting On The Style' by Lonnie Donnegan  1978)
09 Drop Down Baby (from 'Putting On The Style' by Lonnie Donnegan  1978)
10 Tarota (from 'Tarot Suite' by Mike Batt 1978)

Enjoy / Enjoy

For Mac users: after the file is unzipped the folder will appear empty inside. Press command+shift+period (to show hidden files) and a grayed out folder '...and on guitar' will appear and the mp3s will be inside. Either drag those to another folder or rename the folder to 'and on guitar'. Press command+shift+period to once again hide the hidden files.

Music For Pleasure - The Human Factor (1984)

Music for Pleasure were founded in Leeds 1979 by Martin King (bass guitar), Alan Peace (lead vocal), Sean Wheatley (drums) and David Whitaker (keyboards). The band were originally signed to Rockburgh Records and contributed the song 'The Human Factor' to Rockburgh's seminal Northern bands compilation 'Hicks From The Sticks'. in 1980. I probably first heard the song on the John Peel show, and although I wasn't particularly enamoured of synth-pop bands like Depeche Mode or The Pet Shop Boys, I did have time for the more experimental ones like The Normal and early OMD, and so when the song was released as a 7" single I bought it. In 1980, Peace and Wheatley were replaced by Mark Copson (lead vocal) and Christopher Oldroyd (drums), and so 'The Human Factor' single that I got was a re-recorded version, which was followed by the John Leckie-produced 'Fuel To The Fire' in 1981. King was replaced by Ivor Roberts on bass guitar in 1982, and this new line-up then signed to Polydor Records, and released the 'Switchback' single in 1982, followed by their first album 'Into The Rain'. I'd stopped following them by this point, and so missed their next two singles, 'Light' and 'Time', both taken from the album, and after the 'Dark Crash' single in 1983 they were dropped by the label. Music for Pleasure did continue to release records on their own Whirlpool label, with 'Disconnection' coming out in 1984, followed by the four-track EP 'Chrome Hit Corrosion' later that year. The band then released their second album 'Blacklands' in 1985, after which they disbanded. I still think 'The Human Factor' stands up well today, and now after hearing some of their later work perhaps I should have stuck with them a bit longer, as they definitely had something which stood them apart from other synth-pop bands of the era. 



Track listing

01 The Human Factor (single 1980)
02 Madness At The Mission (b-side of 'The Human Factor')
03 Fuel To The Fire (single 1981)
04 Debris (b-side of 'Fuel To The Fire')
05 Malefice (b-side of 'Light' 1982)
06 I Recall (b-side of 'Switchback' 1982)
07 Dark Crash (single 1983)
08 Urban Poison (b-side of 'Dark Crash')
09 Black Festival (b-side of 'Dark Crash')
10 Slide (b-side of 'Time' 1983)
11 The Rise (from the 'Chrome Hit Corrosion' EP 1984)
12 Walking (from the 'Chrome Hit Corrosion' EP 1984)
13 Pleasure Ride (from the 'Chrome Hit Corrosion' EP 1984)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Late! - Pocketwatch (1991)

In the summer of 1991 Dave Grohl went into WGNS Studios and recorded four songs, playing all the instruments himself, and these recordings were  combined with six songs from a previous Upland Studios session recorded in late 1990 to make the 'Pocketwatch' album. Grohl gave a tape of the songs to Simple Machines co-founder Jenny Toomey, who immediately wanted it for the label's Tool Cassette Series. Upon accepting Simple Machines' request for a demo tape, Grohl decided to hide his identity under the pseudonym Late!, 'because I’m an idiot and I thought it would be funny to say to everybody, "Sorry, we’re Late!"'. The Tool Cassette Series was originally a way of keeping music 'in print' on an as-needed basis without having to finance vinyl or CD pressings, since Simple Machines dubbed the cassettes as the orders came in. The Late! cassette was offered for sale in 1991, but when Nirvana released 'Nevermind' later that year, its unexpected success meant that 'Pocketwatch' eventually became noticed. It gained more attention when the Foo Fighters' early material was released in 1995, with some of the songs appearing on subsequent releases, creating even higher demand for the cassette, which was being mentioned frequently in interviews. As the label became flooded with orders, and with deteriorating master cassettes, Simple Machines got in touch with Grohl about releasing the Late! album as a CD to keep up with demand, but Grohl preferred to keep it as a cassette only release, which the label honoured. When the two master cassettes for 'Pocketwatch' came to the end of their useful lives, and with some of the other artists masters in the same condition, Simple Machines decided to discontinue the Tool Cassette Series from their mailorder, putting the over half-decade experiment to an end. As cassettes became a less popular format, and with no official CD release in sight, 'Pocketwatch' fell victim to countless bootleg CD releases, ranging from the entire album, to single songs appearing on a variety of bootleg compilations. Some of these songs have been re-recorded and officially released, such as 'Marigold' on the b-side of Nirvana's 'Heart-Shaped Box', and 'Winnebago' as the flip to Foo Fighters' 'Exhausted' single, but here is the original album, as recorded by Grohl himself.  



Track listing

01 Pokey The Little Puppy
02 Petrol CB
03 Friend Of A Friend
04 Throwing Needles
05 Just Another Story About Skeeter Thompson
06 Color Pictures Of A Marigold
07 Hell's Garden
08 Winnebago
09 Bruce
10 Milk

Suggested by 'The Greatest Albums You'll Never Hear' by Bruno MacDonald

Enjoy / Enjoy

Tuesday, 26 May 2020

Phish - The White Album (1994)

Now that we've worked our way through all of Phish's Halloween shows we go right back to the beginning, and the one that started the whole thing. For their first-ever musical costume, Phish asked their fans what album they’d want to hear via a mailed-in voting system, and the overwhelming winner was The Beatles’ 'The White Album'. The show took place at the Glen Falls Civic Center, with Phish playing a full set of originals, followed by the 29-song Beatles record, then a third set of originals as well. The band had never performed any of the songs on 'The White Album' before, barring a one-off performance of  'Piggies' a decade prior, and fans were absolutely stunned, leaving the venue around 3:30 a.m. after a ridiculous and triumphant night. The legend of this show continues to propel Phish forward, as the show launched a Halloween legend that is still going on today.



Track listing

01 Back In The U.S.S.R.
02 Dear Prudence
03 Glass Onion
04 Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
05 Wild Honey Pie
06 The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill
07 While My Guitar Gently Weeps
08 Happiness Is A Warm Gun
09 Martha My Dear
10 I'm So Tired
11 Blackbird
12 Piggies
13 Rocky Raccoon
14 Don't Pass Me By
15 Why Don't We Do It In The Road?
16 I Will
17 Julia
18 Birthday
19 Yer Blues
20 Mother Nature's Son
21 Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey
22 Sexy Sadie
23 Helter Skelter
24 Long, Long, Long
25 Revolution 1
26 Honey Pie
27 Savoy Truffle
28 Cry Baby Cry
29 Revolution 9


Friday, 22 May 2020

Porcupine Tree - The Love, Death & Mussolini E.P. (1990)

Porcupine Tree are an English progressive rock band formed by musician Steven Wilson in 1987. The band began essentially as a solo project for Wilson, who created all of the band's music, and their early sound evoked a style of psychedelic rock comparable to that of the psychedelic/progressive bands of the 1970s, such as Pink Floyd, that had dominated the music scene during his youth. He was joined by Malcolm Stocks to form a fictional legendary rock band named The Porcupine Tree, and the two fabricated a detailed back-story, including information on alleged band members and album titles, as well as a colourful history which purportedly included events such as a meeting at a 1970's rock festival and several trips in and out of prison. As soon as he had put aside enough money to buy his own studio equipment, Wilson created several hours of music to provide evidence of the bands existence, and although Stocks provided a few passages of treated vocals and experimental guitar playing, his role in the project was mostly offering occasional ideas, with the bulk of the material being written, recorded, played, and sung by Wilson. 
At this point, Porcupine Tree was little more than a joke and a private amusement, as Wilson was concentrating on his other project, No-Man, an endeavour with UK based singer/songwriter Tim Bowness, but by 1989 he began to consider some of the Porcupine Tree music as potentially marketable, so he created an 80-minute-long cassette titled 'Tarquin's Seaweed Farm' under the name of Porcupine Tree. He still wasn't taking it entirely seriously, though, as he included an eight-page inlay which further revealed the hoaxed Porcupine Tree backstory, including references to fictitious band members such as Sir Tarquin Underspoon and Timothy Tadpole-Jones. Wilson sent out copies of 'Tarquin's Seaweed Farm' to several people he felt would be interested in the recordings, including Nick Saloman, the cult UK guitarist better known as The Bevis Frond, who suggested that he send one to Richard Allen, a writer for the UK counter-cultural magazine Encyclopaedia Psychedelica and co-editor of the UK psychedelic garage rock magazine 'Freakbeat'. Allen reviewed the tape in both magazines, and while he disliked some of the material, he gave much of it a positive review, and later became the band's manager, press agent, and promoter. 
In the meantime, Wilson had continued to work on new material, and in 1990 he released the 'Love, Death & Mussolini EP', issued in a very limited run of 10 cassette copies, and it remains one of the band's most collectible pieces. Because of its rarity it has been bootlegged and copies sold as originals, but original copies came with a handwritten letter by Steven Wilson and a 3-page A4-sized booklet with mostly imaginary credits, so beware. It was composed of nine at-the-time-unreleased tracks, as a preview for the upcoming second cassette album 'The Nostalgia Factory', which further expanded Porcupine Tree's underground fanbase, although at this point they were still carrying on the charade of being 1970's rock legends. Tracks 1 to 7 ended up on Side A of 'The Nostalgia Factory'. while track 8 was later released on the vinyl version of 'Yellow Hedgerow Dreamscape'. Track 9 has never appeared anywhere else, although its name was reused for a different track that appeared on 'The Nostalgia Factory'. The notes from the cover are worth reproducing as they are quite amusing.

'Love, Death and Mussolini' is an E.P.
E.P. stands for 'extended player'
An 'extended player' is longer than a single but not long enough to be called an L.P. (a long player).
Here then are 3 songs and 2 instrumentals, new material from the band Porcupine Tree.
These 5 tracks last for about 20 minutes in total. 20 minutes is a good duration for an 'extended player'.
However, 'Love, Death and Mussolini' takes advantage of the cassette medium by including an additional 17 minutes of music taking it to L.P. (long player) length.
This is known as 'value for money'.
In the music industry it is known as 'marketing'.
Do your accounting to the sound of Porcupine Tree.



Track listing

01 Hymn
02 Footprints
03 Linton Samuel Dawson
04 And The Swallows Dance Above The Sun
05 Queen Quotes Crowley
06 No Luck With Rabbits
07 Begonia Seduction Scene
08 Out
09 It Will Rain For A Million Years

Enjoy / Enjoy

Gary Moore - ...and on guitar (2006)

Robert William Gary Moore was born and raised in Belfast in 1953, and played in several local bands during his teenage years. In 1968, at the age of just 16, he moved to Dublin after having been asked to join the Irish band Skid Row, before the departure of lead singer Phil Lynott. Skid Row released one album and a few singles before Moore made the decision to move to England, but before he did he contributed a sublime guitar solo to 'Sign Of My Mind' on Dr. Strangely Strange's second album 'Heavy Petting'. In 1973 The Gary Moore Band released their 'Grinding Stone' album, and the following year Moore teamed up again with Lynott when he joined Thin Lizzy after the sudden departure of original guitarist Eric Bell mid-way through a tour. He only stayed long enough to help complete the tour, and to record three songs for Lizzy's 'Nightlife' alum, before he left to form Colosseum II with original Colosseum drummer Jon Hiseman. In 1978 Moore re-joined Thin Lizzy on a permanent basis, replacing Brian Robertson, and with his reputation as one of the finest guitarists around, other musicians started asking him to guest on their albums. Cozy Powell was the first, and Moore supplies some blistering guitar to his 'Over The Top' album. In 1985 Culture Club producer Steve Levine was taking The Beach Boys in a new direction, which included getting Stevie Wonder, Ringo Starr and Gary Moore to guest on the recordings. 
Following a long career as a backing vocalist, 1977 saw Vicky Brown (wife to Joe Brown and mother of Sam Brown) starting a solo career, and for her 1990 single 'We Are One' Moore was invited to add some smokey blues guitar. A couple of years later came a similar request, this time from Jimmy Nail, who hadn't yet hit the big time with his 'Crocodile Shoes' single, and was recording his second album. In 1993 Paul Rodgers decided to record a tribute album to Muddy Waters, and invited a number of renowned guitarists to contribute to it, including Jeff Beck, Brian May, Steve Miller, Trevor Rabin, and Gary Moore. By 2001 Jim Capaldi had released a dozen solo albums, and for his next one he called on the help of George Harrison, Steve Winwood, Ian Paice, Paul Weller, and Gary Moore, who adds some great guitar to 'Heart Of Stone'. In 2007 Otis Taylor was the support act for Moore's European tour, and the previous year Moore had added some stunning guitar to Taylor's 'Definition Of A Circle' album, with the solo on 'Little Betty' possibly being the best on this album. While Moore's work with Thin Lizzy, Colosseum II, and his solo offerings is well known, I hope that this album uncovers some of his more obscure contributions from the first  thirty-five years of his career. 



Track listing

01 Sign Of My Mind (from 'Heavy Petting' by Dr. Strangely Strange 1970)
02 Killer (from 'Over The Top' by Cozy Powell 1979)
03 Maybe I Don't Know (from 'The Beach Boys' by The Beach Boys 1985)
04 We Are One (single by Vicki Brown 1990)
05 Absent Friends (from 'Growing Up In Public' by Jimmy Nail 1992)
06 She Moves Me (from 'Muddy Water Blues' by Paul Rodgers 1993)
07 Heart Of Stone (from 'Living On The Outside' by Jim Capaldi 2001)
08 Little Betty (from 'Definition Of A Circle' by Otis Taylor 2006)

Enjoy / Enjoy

For Mac users: after the file is unzipped the folder will appear empty inside. Press command+shift+period (to show hidden files) and a grayed out folder '...and on guitar' will appear and the mp3s will be inside. Either drag those to another folder or rename the folder to 'and on guitar'. Press command+shift+period to once again hide the hidden files.

The Jungle Brothers - Crazy Wisdom Masters (1993)

 The Jungle Brothers were a hip hop group that was associated with the informal Native Tongues coalition that included groups such as De La Soul, Tribe Called Quest, and Black Sheep.  The groups could be connected through their common interest in expanding the sound of the genre, sampling jazz fusion albums, country music, sixties pop music, as well as a greater palate of R&B and funk. In addition, their approach to MCing moved away from the aggressive, shouting approach that defined earlier acts such Run DMC, the Beasties, etc. to smoother, more laid back approach. Lyrically, the groups alternated between serious political topics and a return to the sort of playfulness that defined early hip-hop. The band put out their first record in 1988, with 'Straight Out Of The Jungle', and a second album followed in 1990 with 'Done By The Forces Of Nature'. 'Crazy Wisdom Masters' was to have been their third album, and it featured some considerably experimental hip-hop for the time, as well as production from Bill Laswell. Warner Brothers constantly rejected the tapes, and eventually a much diluted version of the album was released in 1993 under the title of 'J. Beez Wit The Remedy'. Though the final album is considerably more conventional, experimental tracks are still in evidence, including a few left over from the 'Crazy Wisdom Masters' sessions, such as 'Spittin' Wicked Randomness' and 'For The Headz At Company Z'. Some tracks have officially surfaced, with four appearing on the Wordsound 'Crazy Wisdom Masters' 10" EP in 1998, and the track 'Troopin' On The Down Lo' being included on the obscure Warner Brothers compilation 'Trademark of Quality Volume 2' in 1993, but here is the full album as it would have appeared if the band had been given their head and been allowed to take rap and hip hop to the next level. 



Track listing

01 Simple as That
02 Good Ole Hype Shit
03 Book Of Rhyme Pages
04 JB's Comin Through
05 Spittin Wicked Randomness
06 Sparl A New Flame
07 Mysterious Monkey
08 Battle Show
09 I'm In Love With Indica
10 Ra Ra Kid
11 Peace Ahki
12 Trials Of An Era
13 Book Of Rhyme Pages (Remix)
14 Troopin' On he Down Low
15 Headz at Company Z

Enjoy / Enjoy

Man - Grasshopper (1973)

Man evolved out of the Bystanders, a successful close harmony pop group from Merthyr Tydfil in Wales, who issued eight singles, including '98.6', which reached No. 45 in UK Singles Chart in February 1967. When the Bystanders formed in 1962 the line-up was Owen Money, then known as Gerry Braden, (later replaced by Vic Oakley), on vocals, Micky Jones on guitar, Clive John on keyboards, Ray Williams on bass, and Jeff Jones on drums. By 1968 the other members wanted to change musical direction to a more psychedelic/American west-coast guitar sound, so Oakley left and was replaced by Deke Leonard, with the band changing its name to Man. They were initially signed to Pye Records, for which they recorded their first two albums, with 'Revelation' being infamous for the simulated orgasm on 'Erotica', earning it a UK radio ban. This album includes an eight minute alternate recording without the sexy overdubs, and sounds astonishing. Just before their second album '2 ozs Of Plastic With A Hole In The Middle' came out in 1969, Leonard left and was replaced by Martin Ace from Leonard's previous band, Dream, and we have a couple of out-takes from those sessions on here. In 1971 they signed to United Artists, and their eponymous record 'Man' was released that year to mixed reviews. The next album 'Do You Like It Here Now, Are You Settling In?' was released at the end of 1971, and was better received by press and public alike, but constant touring was creating internal pressures, and in January 1972, keyboardist Clive John left the band. 
The new four piece supported Hawkwind and Brinsley Schwarz at a charity gig at The Roundhouse on 13th February 1972, which was recorded and issued as 'Greasy Truckers Party', rapidly becoming a collectors' item. United Artists persuaded them to follow this up with their own live album, and 'Live at the Padget Rooms, Penarth' was recorded on 8 April 1972 and was sold at a reduced price, with only 8,000 copies being pressed. Major personnel upheavals followed, with Ace leaving, Leonard being sacked, and Clive John rejoining, before falling out with Jones and departing again. Phil Ryan and Will Youatt joined on keyboards and bass, and they eventually released 'Be Good To Yourself At Least Once A Day' in 1972, once again to good reviews, and a couple of out-takes from those sessions are also on here. A party on 19 December 1972, with Dave Edmunds, Help Yourself, and The Flying Aces was issued as 'Christmas At The Patti' in 1973 as a double 10" album, from which I've included one track, where the band were augmented by Dave Edmunds and Stan Phifer. In 1973 they released a one-off single 'I'm Dreaming' / 'The Symbol Who Came To Dinner', which was quite unusual for them, so much so that they actually called it 'The Single (I'm Dreaming)', and it didn't appear on their 1973 half live/half studio double album 'Back Into The Future'. Man continued to record throughout the rest of the 70's, and have retained their reputation as one of the UK's best ever 'jam bands', so enjoy these, mostly instrumental, rarities from their classic early period. 



Track listing

01 Erotica (first version)  
02 A Sad Song (Grasshopper) 
03 Walkin' The Dogma ('Spunk Box' demo)   
04 Bananas (instrumental version)   
05 I'm Dreaming  
06 Rockfield Jam  
07 The Symbol Who Came To Dinner   
08 Life On The Road / Shuffle Christmas At The Patti  

Enjoy / Enjoy

Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Phish - í rokk (2018)

In 2018, when rumours surfaced that Phish would cover an 'obscure album from 1981', some jumped to the conclusion that they would play 'Mark Of The Mole' by The Residents while others placed their bets on 'My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts' by Brian Eno and David Byrne, or Rush‘s 'Moving Pictures'. When the Phishbill was given to the first attendees, everyone at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and on social media was buzzing about the ultra-obscure Scandanavian prog-rock hidden gem, 'í rokk' by Kasvot Växt. Upon further investigation, however, some members of the vast Phish community discovered that the entire album was a hoax. The sketchiness of the whole 'Swedish Phish' concept began once researchers and Phistorians couldn’t find much information about the album. Anywhere. Conclusions were made that Phish had orchestrated one of the biggest pranks in their 35-year-career by fabricating the false links and an album cover themselves, and that's exactly what they'd done. Phish knocked it out of the park as they pulled off this stunt, executing the 10 new songs with precision and confidence. All of the album’s tracks, including 'Turtle In The Clouds', 'Say It To Me S.A.N.T.O.S.', and 'Play By Play' have found their way into Phish’s vast catalog as setlist staples. In fact, the band had been having so much fun with the new material that they paired up 'Mercury' and 'Say It To Me S.A.N.T.O.S' for their 2018 New Year’s Eve gig. 



Track listing

01 Turtle In The Clouds
02 Stray Dog
03 Everything Is Hollow
04 We Are Come To Outlive Our Brains
05 Say It To Me S.A.N.T.O.S.
06 The Final Hurrah
07 Play By Play
08 Death Don’t Hurt Very Long
09 Cool Amber And Mercury
10 Passing Through

The original fabricated album sleeve












Enjoy / Enjoy

Saturday, 16 May 2020

Roxy Music - Re-modelled (1972) UPDATE

It's just been spotted that the song labelled as '2HB' in this post is actually an instrumental version of 'Chance Meeting'. Not exactly sure how that happened as I don't recall renaming any tracks, but it did, and so here is the actual '2HB' for you to download and replace if you've already grabbed the album. Links are also now updated on the original post.

2 HB

Friday, 15 May 2020

Alan Price Set - Starting Price (1969)

In 1965 Alan Price left The Animals, a band he'd formed and played with for three years, in order to embark on a new career with an outfit under his own name, the Alan Price Set. Joining Price in this new group were Clive Burrows on baritone saxophone, Steve Gregory on tenor saxophone, John Walters on trumpet, Peter Kirtley on guitar, Rod 'Boots' Slade on bass, and 'Little' Roy Mills on drums. Their first single didn't make much impact, but the follow-up, a great reworking of the classic 'I Put A Spell On You' cracked the UK top ten, and was the start of a very successful period for the band. Two further singles in 1967 made the top five in the UK singles chart, and they also released a couple of fine albums, which oddly enough didn't feature many of their singles on them. 'Don't Stop The Carnival' was their last big hit, scraping into the top 20, but their next two singles were very disappointing, with 'When I Was A Cowboy', and its embarrassing b-side 'Tappy Turquoise' being particularly bad. Price disbanded the group after that last single and started a solo career with a couple of releases under his own name, and 'The Trimdon Grange Explosion' was surprisingly good, so I've added it as a post-script to this album. It was a shame that the band fizzled out in such an unremarkable manner, as in the beginning they were a superb jazz/pop group. After a couple more 45's Price teamed up with Georgie Fame, and had a massive hit with 'Rosetta', and they followed that with more singles and an album as Fame & Price. In 1973 Price wrote the soundtrack to the Lindsay Anderson film 'O Lucky Man', and the success of the single extracted from it, 'Poor People', kick-started a long and critically-acclaimed solo career. But for now, enjoy some great jazzy pop from the late 60's, on this collection of non-album singles and b-sides from the Alan Price Set, which just concentrates on the good stuff, making for a really enjoyable overview of the band's career from 1965 to 1969. 



Track listing

01 Any Day Now (My Wild Beautiful Bird) (single 1965)
02 Never Be Sick On Sunday (b-side of 'Any Day Now (My Wild Beautiful Bird)')
03 I Put Spell On You (single 1966)
04 Iechyd-Da (b-side of 'I Put A Spell On You')
05 Willow Weep For Me (single 1966)
06 Yours Until Tomorrow (b-side of 'Willow Weep For Me')
07 Take Me Home (b-side of 'Hi-Lili Hi-Lo' 1966)
08 Simon Smith And The Amazing Dancing Bear (single 1967)
09 Who Cares (b-side of 'The House That Jack Built' 1967)
10 Shame (single 1967)
11 Don't Stop The Carnival (single 1968)
12 The Time Has Come (b-side of 'Don't Stop The Carnival')
13 Love Story (single 1968)
14 The Trimdon Grange Explosion (single as Alan Price 1969)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Mick Ronson - ...and on guitar (1979)

Mick Ronson initially wanted to be a cellist, but moved to guitar upon discovering the music of Duane Eddy, whose sound on the bass notes of his guitar sounded to Ronson similar to that of the cello. He played with a number of small bands in the 60's including The Mariners, The Crestas, The Voice,  The Wanted, and then Hull's top local band, The Rats. In 1967 The Rats recorded the one-off psychedelic track, 'The Rise and Fall of Bernie Gripplestone' at Fairview Studios in Willerby, Yorkshire, which can be heard on the 2008 release 'Front Room Masters – Fairview Studios 1966–1973'. When John Cambridge left The Rats to join his former Hullaballoos bandmate Mick Wayne in Junior's Eyes, he was replaced by Mick 'Woody' Woodmansey, and in early 1970, Cambridge came back to Hull in search of Ronson, intent upon recruiting him for David Bowie's new backing band The Hype, along with drummer Woodmansey. He found Ronson marking out a rugby pitch, one of his duties as a Parks Department gardener for Hull City Council, and although initially reluctant, he eventually agreed to accompany Cambridge to a meeting with Bowie. Two days later, on 5 February, Ronson made his debut with Bowie on John Peel's national BBC Radio 1 show, and from that point on his future was assured. 
Within a few years his reputation had grown so much that he was often asked to contribute to other artist's albums, and later even to produce them. His first post-Bowie guest spot was actually on the recommendation of his employer, who was producing Lou Reed's 'Transformer' album, and he invited Ronson to play guitar on it. The same year he was asked to contribute to The Pure Prairie League's second album 'Bustin' Out', and I've included his superlative work on 'Angel No. 9' as an example of his contribution to the record, and Ronson was so taken with this song that he included a cover of it on his second solo album 'Play Don't Worry'. In 1974 Mott The Hoople were recording their last single before Ian Hunter left and the rest of the group reformed as simply Mott. During the recording of 'The Saturday Gigs' guitarist Ariel Bender was replaced by Ronson, marking his only official appearance on a Mott the Hoople release, and Ronson's image was used in the middle of the band's line-up on the single's cover. After Ian Hunter left Mott The Hoople he embarked on a long and successful solo career, starting which what I still consider his best album 'Ian Hunter', and 'Once Bitten, Twice Shy' shows Ronson at his very best. 
In 1976 Ronson contributed guitar to the title track of David Cassidy's 'Getting It In The Street' album, giving the former bubblegum pop star a bit of street cred. The same year he was a surprise addition to Bob Dylan's Rolling Thunder Review tour, and concert recordings were eventually released as the 'Hard Rain' album, from which I've included the rocking 'Maggie's Farm'. Roger Daltrey employed Ronson's guitar on his 1977 solo release 'One Of The Boys', for which Paul McCartney wrote a new song 'Giddy', and Ronson was joined by Hank Marvin, Eric Clapton and Alvin Lee on a great fun recording. Also that year Ronson and Ian Hunter produced and played on Ellen Foley's debut album 'Nightout', with Ronson suggesting that she record two songs by Phil Rambow, one of which is included here. The most surprising track on this album, though, is a 1970 recording for Elton John's 'Tumbleweed Connection' album, where Ronson played guitar on the track 'Madman Across the Water'. This version of the song was not included in the original release of the album of the same name two years later, although it was eventually included on deluxe re-issues, and you wonder how this outstanding near-nine minute take could ever have been dropped from the record. Ronson collaborated with many more artists throughout the rest of his career, but I think this collection of his work from the 70's shows him at his best, and also the variety of artists who held him in high enough esteem to want him added to their records.   



Track listing

01 Vicious (from 'Transformer' by Lou Reed 1972)
02 Madman Across The Water (original version with Elton John 1970)
03 Angel No. 9 (from 'Bustin' Out' by The Pure Prairie League 1972)
04 The Saturday Gigs (single by Mott The Hoople 1974)
05 Once Bitten, Twice Shy (from 'Ian Hunter' by Ian Hunter 1975)
06 Gettin' It In The Streets (from 'Gettin' It In The Streets' by David Cassidy 1976)
07 Maggie's Farm (from 'Hard Rain' by Bob Dylan 1976)
08 Giddy (from 'One Of The Boys' by Roger Daltrey 1977)
09 Night Out (from 'Nightout' by Ellen Foley 1979)

Enjoy / Enjoy

For Mac users: after the file is unzipped the folder will appear empty inside. Press command+shift+period (to show hidden files) and a grayed out folder '...and on guitar' will appear and the mp3s will be inside. Either drag those to another folder or rename the folder to 'and on guitar'. Press command+shift+period to once again hide the hidden files.

Eminem - Infinite (1996)

Marshall Bruce Mathers III was born in 1972, and is professionally known as Eminem. After releasing 'The Slim Shady EP' in 1997, he signed to Dr. Dre's Aftermath Entertainment and subsequently achieved mainstream popularity with 'The Slim Shady LP', and his next two releases 'The Marshall Mathers LP' (2000) and 'The Eminem Show' (2002) were worldwide successes and were both nominated for the Grammy Award for Album of the Year. However, everyone has to start somewhere, and 'The Slim Shady LP' wasn't actually his first album under name of Eminem. In 1996 he recorded his debut album 'Infinite' for independent label Web Entertainment label. Recording sessions took place at the Bass Brothers' studio, with production handled by Mr. Porter, Proof, and Eminem himself. The album features guest vocals from fellow rappers Proof, Mr. Porter, Eye-Kyu, Three and Thyme, as well as singer Angela Workman on the track 'Searchin''. Copies were pressed on vinyl and cassette, and Eminem sold them out of the trunk of his car in Detroit. The album was a commercial failure, selling a total of about 1,000 copies, with lyrical subjects including his struggle to raise his newborn daughter, Hailie Jade Scott Mathers, on little money. During this period his rhyming style, primarily inspired by rappers Nas, Esham and AZ, lacked the comically violent slant for which he later became known, and Detroit disc jockeys largely ignored 'Infinite', with the feedback that he did receive ("Why don't you go into rock and roll?") leading him to craft angrier, moodier tracks. It's currently not available from any online music store, but deserves a re-appraisal, as now that we know what was to come later you can definitely hear sparks of something promising on here.  



Track listing

01 Infinite
02 W.E.G.O. (Interlude) (skit performed by Proof and DJ Head)
03 It's O.K. (featuring Eye-Kyu)
04 Tonite
05 313 (featuring Eye-Kyu)
06 Maxine (featuring Mr. Porter and Three)
07 Open Mic (featuring Thyme)
08 Never 2 Far
09 Searchin' (featuring Mr. Porter and Angela Workman)
10 Backstabber
11 Jealousy Woes II

Suggested by 'The Greatest Albums You'll Never Hear' by Bruno MacDonald


Factory Floor - Application Approved (2009)

Factory Floor formed in 2005, originally comprising Gabriel Gurnsey and Mark Harris, who were then joined by Dominic Butler, and they played a sort of 'post-industrial' music, using live drums, synthesizers and noise. In 2010 Harris left, going on to form Shift Work, and  Gurnsey and Butler were then joined by Nik Colk (aka Nik Colk Void), formerly of KaitO. This new line up had Gurnsey playing drums and drum machines, Butler using modular synths and electronics, and Colk adding manipulated vocals, guitar and samples. After the release of a 12" single and a 7" single in 2008, and the Japanese-only mini-album 'Talking On Cliffs' in 2009, none of which made any impact on the music scene, the band signed to the Blast First Petite label, releasing several twelve-inch singles, including 'Wooden Box' (featuring a Stephen Morris remix) and an untitled ten-inch mini-LP in 2010. This latter release was the one which introduced me to the band, and after some searching I managed to get my hands on a copy of the 10" untitled mini-album, which was described by the NME as "a terrifying racket that simultaneously frazzles the nerves and slackens the bowels" and "an incessant drone of keyboards wired through twisted-metal synthesizers and thundering drums summoned from the heavens". It still got a 9/10 rating though, and I have to agree with everything they said. The band approached Stephen Morris by sending him a CD and asking if he would do a remix, and after remixing 'Wooden Box', Morris continued to work with the band as producer. Two twelve-inch releases followed featuring remixes by Morris and Chris Carter, and the band released their debut album in 2013. Morris had polished the band into a hip dance act, and despite getting the album and playing it repeatedly, I just felt let down that they'd abandoned the sound that drew me to them in the first place. Subsequent albums have dropped the industrial part of the sound completely, and they are now a well-respected act in dance circles, but my favourite period is definitely while they were an independent entity between 2008 and 2010, in charge of their own destiny, and producing some of the most challenging music that I'd heard. Factory Floor are not an easy listen, but it was just what I needed back then, and I was impressed enough to try to search out other material from the band. I found one lone track on Soundcloud which I quickly grabbed, and then came across those two early singles, plus that self-released album from 2009. They did manage to regain my interest briefly in 2012, when they released a 50 minute live recording from 'The Boiler Room', but that was the last thing of their that I really liked, so this post is a celebration of that early work, including the whole of their 'Planning Application' 12" EP, the 'Bipolar' single, that Soundcloud track, plus the 2009 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-album. If Cabaret Voltaire and Throbbing Gristle are your bag, then you'll love Factory Floor. 



Track listing

01 Taxidermist (from the 'Planning Application' EP 2008)
02 Post Is Here (from the 'Planning Application' EP 2008)
03 Francis, Francis (from the 'Planning Application' EP 2008)
04 Felt Suit (from the 'Planning Application' EP 2008)
05 I Was Always Wrong (from the 'Planning Application' EP 2008)
06 Untitled (hidden track from the 'Planning Application' EP 2008) 
07 Biploar (single 2008)
08 You Were Always Wrong (b-side of 'Bipolar')
09 Aeromodelling Club (posted on Soundcloud)
10 I Just Left These As Attempts (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)
11 Lalalala La La (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)
12 Far Away And Gentle Now (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)
13 Taxidermist (Edit) (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)
14 50,000 Particles Of Grey Ash (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)
15 View Too Much (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)
16 TMAOTW (from the 'Taking On Cliffs' mini-LP 2009)

Enjoy / Enjoy

Tuesday, 12 May 2020

Phish - The Rise & Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars (2016)

After a year off from their annual costume gig, Phish returned to the MGM Grand Arena in 2016, using their Halloween set to pay tribute to the legendary David Bowie, who had died in January of that year. Phish’s choice to cover Bowie for Halloween was not necessarily surprising - the band had never been shy about proclaiming his influence on their music, and 2016 saw the band play a number of tributes to their hero in the wake of his death. However, their choice to cover his iconic album 'The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars' was still extremely meaningful, for both the band and fans alike. During the performance, Phish truly did justice to one of the most-wished-for musical costumes over the years. The band offered up stellar renditions of some of Bowie’s most beloved songs from his glam era, including 'Suffragette City', 'Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide', 'Moonage Daydream', 'Ziggy Stardust', and 'Starman'. The band’s sound was supplemented by backup vocalists Jennifer Hartswick, Jo Lampert and Celisse Henderson as well as a string section composed of Sylvia D’Avanzo, Alisa Horn, Hiroko Taguchi, Todd Low, Antoine Silverman and Alissa Smith. At the end of the night, fans agreed that it was a perfect way for one legendary act to honor another.



Track listing

01 Five Years
02 Soul Love
03 Moonage Daydream
04 Starman
05 It Ain't Easy
06 Lady Stardust
07 Star
08 Hang On To Yourself
09 Ziggy Stardust
10 Suffragette City
11 Rock 'n' Roll Suicide


Pink Floyd - Some Of Our Parts (2014)

After I posted the 'Division Bell'/'Endless River' mash-up 'Forever And Ever', I received a few queries about the other album along the same lines that I mentioned in that post, 'Some Of Our Parts'. This prompted me to give it another listen, and I'm now torn between which one I prefer, so I thought I'd post 'Some Of Our Parts' so that you can compare and contrast yourself. Like 'Forever And Ever', this version is also split into five sections, but it's actually one long 105 minute mix, so give it a listen and see which one you think works the best.  



Track listing 

01 Clusterscape
02 Things Left Unsaid
03 What Do You Want From Me
04 It's What We Do
05 Ebb And Flow

06 Poles Apart
07 Sum
08 Coming Back To Life
09 Unsung
10 Marooned

11 Anisina
12 A Great Day For Freedom
13 The Lost Art Of Conversation
14 Evrika / Wearing The Inside Out (Live)
15 Night Light

16 Take It Back
17 Allons-Y (1)
18 Autumn '68
19 Allons-Y (2)
20 Keep Hawkin'

21 Lost For Words
22 Surfacing
23 High Hopes
24 Louder Than Words


Friday, 8 May 2020

Led Zeppelin - Blues (1970)

I'm sure that a lot of obsessive LZ fans will have made compilations of their favourite tracks into themed albums, and so it's now my turn. I'd always loved the two slow blues tracks from their first and third albums, and after I found a rare un-issued track from 1969 which was too good not to share I decided to compile an album of my favourite pure blues tracks from their early years. 'I Can't Quit You Baby' and 'You Shook Me' showed right from the start where their roots lay, and to mix it up a bit I've used a longer and more raw take of 'You Shook Me' for this album. 'Baby Come On Home' has a hint of R'n'B to it, it's still a great bluesy track which I've pieced together from two of the three takes which are out there, and it sounds pretty good to me. I've also patched the intro to 'Travelling Riverside Blues', which was only ever recorded for the BBC, and had an annoying fade-in at the beginning. This was one of many songs they recorded for the Beeb which never appeared on a studio album, despite being a superb take of the Robert Johnson original, and similarly, this remix by KLAPE of Buddy Guy's' 'Sitting And Thinking' was played live just the once in 1969, and also never made it into the studio. As this album is a mixture of studio recordings, radio sessions, out-takes and live tracks then hopefully it will be worth a listen for even the most seasoned Led Zep fan.   



Track listing

01 I Can't Quit You Baby
02 Bring It On Home
03 You Shook Me
04 Babe I'm Gonna Leave You
05 Baby Come On Home
06 Since I've Been Loving You 
07 Sitting And Thinking
08 Travelling Riverside Blues

Enjoy / Enjoy

Roxy Music - Re-modelled (1972)

I was contacted last week with a suggestion for a possible post from Roxy Music, as apparently it's understood that Bryan Ferry was not too impressed with Pete Sinfield's production of the band's debut album, so much so that when he launched his solo career in 1973 he took to re-recording songs from the record for b-sides to his singles. It would be great if he'd recorded all of them, but he only did four - 'Chance Meeting', 'Sea Breezes', '2HB', and 'Remake/Remodel', so we'll never know how he felt the rest of the songs should have sounded. However, on researching whether this would be a feasible task to undertake, I found that the 2018 re-issue of the first Roxy album included as bonus tracks a complete set of demo recordings. We therefore have takes of all of the songs just as they were recorded in the studio, and before Pete Sinfield got his hands on them, so after they were given a quick polish, it's just possible that this is how Ferry wanted the album to sound. The title was a no-brainer, given that this is a re-modelling of the original album, so give it a listen and see who you think was right - Ferry or Sinfield. 



Track listing

01 Re-Make/Re-Model
02 Ladytron
03 If There Is Something
04 2HB
05 The Bob (Medley)
06 Chance Meeting
07 Would You Believe?
08 Sea Breezes
09 Bitters End
10 Virginia Plain

Enjoy / Enjoy