Wednesday, July 29, 2009

WOCK On Vinyl - Benny Hill - Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)

Before things get too serious at Rock On Vinyl, I thought it might be fun to post a song at the end of each month, that could be considered to be either Weird, Obscure, Crazy or just plain Korny.
.For your pleasure, this month's WOCK on Vinyl posting is Benny Hill's hit single from the 70's called 'Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)' and yes, the K is for Korny.
Benny Hill was a comedian and actor from the UK. 'Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)' was his fourth hit and a brilliantly funny comedy song, packed with innuendos, which reached No.1 in the UK charts way back in Christmas 1971.
The story of Ernie is inspired by Benny Hills early experience working as a milkman.The song tells of the fictional exploits of milkman Ernie Price, who drove a horse-drawn milk cart, and his war with the bread delivery man ("Two-Ton Ted from Teddington"), both men trying to win the affections of a widow, Sue, who lives on her own at number 22, Liddley Lane. In the end the two men fight with the goods they carry on their delivery carts. In the fight Ernie is killed when Ted throws a rock cake, which hits him underneath the heart, followed by a stale pork pie in his eye. Sue and Ted get married, but the ghost of Ernie returns to haunt them.
For your pleasure and perhaps 'pain', I also include the T.V. promotion clip for Ernie, along with a 320kbs rip from CD.

Benny Hill Link (27Mb) New Link 04/09/2015

Monday, July 27, 2009

Cybotron - Colossus (1978) + Bonus Single

(Australian 1975-80)
The pioneering electronic outfit Cybotron deserves its posting on Rock On Vinyl, since it one of the first (if not the first) Australian examples of pure electronic rock, a genre that later blossomed with the likes of Ollie Olsen's various projects. Here was the blueprint. Synthesizer fanatic Steve Maxwell Von Braund teamed in the mid-70s with Geoff Green to form Cybotron in 1976, but Von Braund had already caused a considerable stir by releasing what is largely regarded as Australia's first fully electronic album, Monster Planet (Clear Light Of Jupiter, 1975).
Influenced by contemporary "Krautrock" electronic outfits like Can, Amon Duul, Faust and Tangerine Dream (not surprisingly, the German-born Von Braund had been an associate/friend of some of these musicians) the ambitious suite impressed with its rich layers of synths, treated sax and electro-percussion. Former Masters Apprentices singer Jim Keays contributed vocals to the title track, while Aztecs drummer, producer and long-time collaborator Gil Matthews engineered and provided bass and drums support, with Henry Vynhal on treated violin.

The “mind-expanding brain food” offered by that debut release continued with the official formation of Cybotron during 1976, and the ensemble went on to create some marvelously inventive aural soundscapes. Their self-titled debut LP (1976) has been described as "a cross between late 60's Stockhausen and Kraftwerk's Autobahn album ... disco melodies warped with hypnotic synth fusion".
It was followed by a bootlegged live radio performance, 'Saturday Night Live' (1977), and two further official albums. 'Colossus' (1978) featured "a more progressive edge backed by a massive symphonic sound" and included contributions by Colin Butcher (drums, percussion, synthesiser). Mark Jones (bass, guitar, keyboards) joined for 'Implosion' (1980) with Gil Matthews again playing drums and keyboards. 'Implosion' was recently released on CD by Aztec Music but I personally prefer their earlier albums, their 2nd LP posted here for your enjoyment.

In more recent times an American electronic group has appropriated the name but has no other connection with the Aussie Cybotron. Von Braund and Green are still about, making "far-out music and vibes". In early 2002 Geoff Green reported that Cybotron is back in action and recording with Gil Mathews. He also announced that their old albums will be released on CD, along with a new live CD recorded when they supported Split Enz.
This rip was taken from CD at 320kps and comes with 2 bonus tracks from their 1979 single 'Ride To Infinity' (thanks to Sunshine at Midoztouch)
Track Listing
01 - Colossus
02 - Eclipse
03 - Medusa
04 - Raga
05 - Colossus (Short Mix)
06 - Ride
07 - Ride To Infinity (Bonus Single Side A)
08 - Xmas Hills (Live Christmas Hills Festival 1979 - Bonus Single Side B)
Band Members
Steve Maxwell Von Braund (keyboards, synthesisers, sax, percussion)
Geoff Green (keyboards, synthesisers)
Gil Matthews (drums, percussion, engineering)

Cybotron Link (127Mb) New Link 25/07/2017

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Baker Gurvitz Army - BGA Live at Derby (1975) Ex SB

(U.K 1974-76)
Baker Gurvitz Army (BGA) was a short-lived English rock group. Former The Gun and Three Man Army members, Paul Gurvitz and Adrian Gurvitz joined forces with ex-Cream drummer Ginger Baker in 1974. Things had not been going too well for Ginger Baker since the demise of his own band Ginger Baker's Air Force. The Gurvitz Brothers, too, were looking for a new way ahead after the early success of their band The Gun. In 1974, though, it seemed all three could use their greatest talents in the Baker Gurvitz Army.
Their self-titled debut album was released the same year and featured a dynamic mixture of heavy rock, guitar themes propelled by Baker's irrepressible drumming. He also contributed a lengthy dramatic opus called 'Mad Jack' which told the story of a motor race in Africa partly sung by Paul with a spoken narration by Ginger, sounding as if he had a bit of trouble with his teeth! He added some tyre squealing sound effects, presumably from his beloved high speed Jensen sports car - fortunately recorded before the fan blade disintegrated and destroyed the engine.
The Baker Gurvitz Army would later take on extra musicians, including vocalist Snips from the band Sharks and keyboard player and arranger Peter Lemer from Seventh Wave. At its best the band was very tight and powerful and the music still stands up today, at a time when many Seventies albums sound weak and poorly produced. Certainly Adrian was a much underrated guitarist, who had a tremendous turn of speed and passionate feeling for the blues. It was perhaps not surprising he sometimes seemed pissed-off at the world. He was a much better guitarist than many of his more publicised contemporaries.
The band recorded two more albums, 'Elysian Encounter' (1975) and 'Hearts Of Fire' first released in 1976. Maybe it should have been called 'Tempers Of Fire' because personality clashes eventually led to the band breaking up the same year! In the aftermath Ginger briefly led a band called Energy, and was associated with Vincent Crane's Atomic Rooster and Hawkwind. Baker the master drummer would spend the next few years dividing his time between playing polo and olive farming in Italy, until he returned to play with such bands as Masters Of Reality and a Cream style trio with Jack Bruce and Gary Moore in 1994 (BBM). Adrian Gurvitz embarked on a solo career and became a successful writer and producer based in Los Angeles, writing for such artists as Whitney Houston. Most of the 'Hearts On Fire' material was written by Adrian, although Snips contributed a couple of songs, 'Neon Lights,' and 'Mystery.'
Paul Gurvitz wrote 'Smiling', something he did rather more than Adrian. Ginger Baker devised the opening title track, but it wasn't long before the fires went out, at least until the next gig and the next band. [Taken from the liner notes of the Hearts On Fire and Wikipedia]

Adrian Gurvitz went on to record several solo albums and released the hit single 'Classic' in 1982. He also joined up with Graeme Edge (Moody Blues) and his brother Paul to form the Graeme Edge Band in the late 70's - releasing 2 successful albums 'Kick Off Your Muddy Boots' and 'Paradise Ballroom'.

During the short 3 year period that the Baker Gurvitz Army were together, they were captured live on a number of bootleg recordings, and I am including the best one of these here for your enjoyment. Recorded live in Derby (1975), this recording captures the band at the height of their career and the sound qualty of this boot is excellent. Playing a selection of tracks from all three of their albums along with a number of covers ('Freedom' by Hendrix, and 'White Room', 'Sunshine Of Your Love' by the Cream), each band member gets an opportunity to strut their stuff. In particular, Baker produces a dynamic (but not too lengthy) drum solo at the end of Memory Lane which leads straight into the nostalgic 'Sunshine of Your Love'.
Their Cream renditions are fresh and tight and fit nicely in amongst their own BGA classics. My favourite BGA tracks are 'Remember' and 'Inside Me', mainly due to the awesome guitar work from Gurvitz along with the interplay of vocals and drums from Mr. Snips and Baker respectively. However, it would have been nice to see the inclusion of 'Mad Dog' in this set, as it was their first big hit and has been an all time personnel favourite.
The rip included here was taken from CD at 192kps and includes full album artwork along with selective pictures of the band.
Track Listing
01 - The Hustler
02 - Space Machine
03 - Remember
04 - White Room
05 - Neon Lights
06 - Inside Of Me
07 - Memory Lane
08 - Sunshine Of Your Love
09 - The Artist
10 - Freedom
11 - Time
12 - Going To Heaven
Ginger Baker (Drums)
Adrian Gurvitz (Guitar, vocals)
Paul Gurvitz (Bass guitar, backing vocals)
Mr Snips (Lead Vocals)
Peter Lemer (Keyboards)
Now Available on the MLP label (MLP08CD). It only costs GBP £8 from their web site:

Friday, July 24, 2009

Blackfeather - Live At Sunbury (1973) + Bonus Tracks

(Australian Band 1970-1978)
Blackfeather was an Aussie rock group in the 1970s. Formed in 1970 they went through a number of line-up changes until disbanding in 1983. Neale Johns was lead vocalist and songwriter. Their major hits were "Seasons of Change" and "Boppin' the Blues". "Boppin' the Blues" was a #1 hit in Australia in October 1972 for the band. The line-up for [Mark I] Blackfeather's 1971 album 'At The Mountain Of Madness' was John Robinson (also of the bands Duck and Dave Miller Set), Alexander Kash, Neale Johns and Robert Fortescue (also of Chain).
'Mark II' Blackfeather, led by Johns, with Warren Ward (bs), Jim Penson (dr), guitarist Zac Zytnick (ex-Tamam Shud) and pianist Paul Wylde. Zytnick left the new band in December (replaced by guitarist Billy Taylor (ex-Flake), followed by Penson at the start of 1972. By now the Blackfeather sound had changed dramatically -- the new material was simpler and rootsier, with Wylde's piano -- he played an electrically-amplified acoustic upright piano -- now the central feature. In July they released a new single, "Boppin' The Blues" / "Find Somebody To Love". The A-side was a rollicking makeover of an old Carl Perkins number, with Wylde's boogie-woogie piano to the fore.
Since they were between drummers at the time, the single was actually cut with Aztecs drummer Gil Matthews. Drummer Trevor Young joined temporarily just before it came out. It became Blackfeather's biggest hit, reaching No.1 in August 1972. It did massive business and is now the song that they are probably best remembered for. Young and Taylor left soon after. Young was replaced by Greg Sheehan.

The wizard-hatted Paul Wylde performs
his keyboard magic in 1972
Taylor wasn't replaced, and Blackfeather remained a four-piece for the next few months. At a time when the electric guitar was still the primary rock instrument, Blackfeather's new piano-bass-drums lineup was quite a radical departure (although one can only pity the poor roadies who had to lug Wylde's piano from gig to gig!) This lineup recorded the second Blackfeather LP, the Howard Gable-produced live album Boppin' The Blues, recorded at gigs at Melbourne Town Hall and the Q Club in September, and released in December 1972.

The next major change was when Paul Wylde quit at the end of 1972. He was replaced by two guitarists, Lindsay Wells (ex-Healing Force) and Tim Piper. Blackfeather returned to the harder, guitar-based style of the first album. They perfomed at Sunbury '73 in January and their set was recorded and released the following year as a live LP; with one track ("I'm Gonna Love You") also featured on Mushroom's inaugural release, the triple-album recording of the concerts, released in April. Their third single, a version of Little Richard's "Slippin & Slidin' " had been released February 1973, by which time Sheehan had quit. He was briefly replaced by John Lee, but the group only lasted a short time longer, splitting in April, after which Lee moved on to the newly-formed Dingoes.
The RIP included here is a compilation of the original LP and some of Blackfeather's (Side A/B) singles and a rare live recording of the Stone's hit "Gimme Shelter" from the legendary ABC show 'GTK' , as bonus tracks. Some album artwork is included.
Track Listing
01 - Get it On
02 - I'm Gonna Love You
03 - Still Alive and Well
04 - Slippin and Slidin'
05 - a) Boppin' The Blues b) Let's Twist Again c) I Just Love To
[Bonus Tracks]
06 - Gimme Shelter (Live GTK 1971)
07 - Boppin' The Blues (Single A-Side)
08 - Slippin and Slidin' (Single A-Side)
09 - Fly On My Nose (Single B-Side)
10 - Gee Willikers (Live)
Band Members:
Neale Johns (Vocals)
Linsey Wells (Guitar)
Tim Piper (Guitar)
Warren Ward (Bass)
Paul Wylde (Piano)
Jim Penson (drums)
Blackfeather Link (65Mb) REPOST

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Lyadrive - Another Time, Another Place (1998)

(UK Band 1979-85, reformed in 1998)
Lyadrive formed at Neal Kay's Bandwagon Heavy Metal Soundhouse - the first brush with fame happened as drummer Lee Burrows gained national music press notoriety during the infamous 'Headbanging Band' contest in December 1979 for his boot-shaped hardboard air-guitar (the public never understood this!) The Contest was judged by such Rock and Roll luminaries as the legendary Lemmy, Rob Halford, Steve Harris, Dave Murray, Cozy Powell and Geoff Barton of "Sounds".
The Band began live work and attracted a good following around West London, becoming part of the now-heralded NEW WAVE OF BRITISH HEAVY METAL. Lee also roadied on the first real major UK "NWOBHM" tour featuring Iron Maiden and Praying Mantis, early in 1980. (The band's links with Mantis are still intact today).

The band connected with Pete Hinton and Will Reid Dick (Saxon's production team) in late 1981 prior to the band's first recording sessions in Southall, Middlesex. Live favourite "Another Time, Another Place" was recorded and released on the Bridge Records compilation album. Their debut track received good reviews and was supported by Neal Kay at his Soundhouse Rock Nights, as well as gaining pirate-radio airplay in London. The band crossed paths with Spider and Ten Records' new-signings Outside Edge (ex-Blackfoot Sue) who still remain in touch in 1997!
Autumn 1982 saw the band travelling north to record a track for Ebony Records' compilation 'Metal Warriors'. The original version of "We've Got The Rock" was one of the album's best tracks and was considered by Ebony as a single for the band. The Band signed with Bridge Records back in London for their first single, the double A-side "White Dress / Anytime" (now ultra- rare) and promoted sales with constant gigging, from flea-pit to Dingwalls (on a bill with Blind Fury and Tilt), Ruskin Arms, Brunel University and beyond! The single drew reasonable reviews from Kerrang and New Musical Express as well as good local coverage.

The promo copy the of single received cautious interest from CBS, with A+R Director Muff Winwood urging a London showcase. With classic timing, the band's bass-player left on the eve of the CBS showcase! This severely shook band morale and it was six months before they were gigging again with new material.
In the meantime, the band was signed by London-based company Loose Music/Brickyard Records for their first album, supported by single releases. The first of these was to be a 12-inch single featuring "Young Lover" (retitled "Give Me Wings"), "Here Comes The Night" and a newly-recorded version of the Ebony favourite "We've Got The Rock". The band recorded at Tin Pan Alley studios in Denmark Street in London. (These recordings feature as the three bonus tracks at the end of their CD release). Loose also released the first single from Xero, featuring Bruce Dickinson on guest vocals!

.The band's reputation as a notable live attraction saw them gigging further from their London home, but in late 1984 as the single was again delayed by a company with internal financial problems, bassist Lee Reddings was poached by Bronz (fronted by Max Bacon and signed to Bronze Records, quarter-million sellers in the States: Max later fronting GTR with Steve Hackett and Steve Howe). This again severely disrupted the band's live schedule and touring was again put on hold.
Spring 1985 swa the band embark (with yet another bassist) on their first national tour, including another slot at Dingwalls supporting Pretty Wykked and a later (unfulfilled) support backing American act Meanstreak. The tour proved disastrous, with cancelled shows and lack of label support, a situation which came to a head with the complete collapse of the label whilst the band were on tour supporting a still unreleased single! Unsurprisingly, the bass-player is the first to leave mid-tour forcing the cancellation of the remaining dates in Gravesend, Warrington, Gloucester and the Midlands.
Lyadrive eventually split in the summer of 1985, with potential largely unfulfilled. Possible tour supports for Di'anno, Spider and Robin George were lost. The band's long-awaited album remained unreleased... .until now. [Extract from Lyadrive’s Website]

Lyadrive came to my attention through a compilation CD entitled 'Legends of Progressive Rock' (Hallmark 309432) on which the haunting track "Lazerwind" was included along with "Another Time, Another Place" under the bands earlier title Tempest Ride.
OK, so 'Another Time Another Place' never actually made it to vinyl when first recorded, but it was later released in 1998 on both Vinyl and CD formats (with CD version featuring bonus tracks).
Let me tell you that the spirit of rock is inherent throughout this album from the traditional metal riffery of opening track "Sign Of The Hunter" to the closing strains of "Lazerwind" which is a classically British metal romp of the kind Maiden, Judas Priest and Def Leppard used to make.
Standout tracks are definately Lazerwind and the title track, but after repeated listens, each track starts to have its own unique appeal.

The opening bars of "Madame Guilotine" sound like they belong to a soundtrack for an epic movie but quickly switches to a blistering barrage of guitar and bass licks taking you into yet another great rock track.
"Anytime" starts with sound affects not unsimilar to those one might find on a Pink Floyd album, but abruptly dives back into more familar hard rock territory, while "Spinning Wheel" just comes out and grabs you straight away with its raunchy melody, screaming guitar work and whinning vocals.
So do yourself a favour, have a listen to 'Another Time, Another Place', even if it's only for that killer track "Lazerwind"
The rip included here was taken from CD at 192kps and includes some album artwork. .
Track Listing
01 - Sign Of The Hunted
02 - Another Time, Another Place
03 - Dangerline
04 - One Of These Days
05 - Spinning The Wheel
06 - Madame Guilotine
07 - Fools Paradise
08 - White Dress
09 - Steal Away The Night
10 - Anytime
11 - Lazerwind
[Bonus Tracks]
12 - We've Got The Rock
13 - Young Lover

14 - Here Comes The Night
Band Members:
Nick John - Vocals/Keyboards
Paul Ryan - Guitar
Keith Thompson - Guitar, Vocals
Guy Wilson - Bass, Yob Chorus
Lee Burrows - Drums, Yob Chorus
Additional Keyboard by Dave Pick
(The 1984 tracks were by)
Nick John - Vocals
Steve Jones - Guitar
Graham Stuart - Guitar, Vocals
Den O'Leary - Bass
Lee Burrows - Drums

Lyadrive Link (86Mb) New Link 12/04/2020

Friday, July 17, 2009

Western Flyer - Live To Survive! (1979)

(Australian 1977-79)
An Australian blues legend, Matt Taylor has been playing his brand of Australian-twinged blues music since the mid-'60s. His first band, the Bay City Union, was formed in March 1966 and was one of Australia's first traditional Chicago blues bands. Taylor briefly sang with the Wild Cherries before forming the Horse, and then briefly stepped in as lead singer with Cam-Pact for a two-week tour of Sydney during early 1970. He then joined blues band Genesis in February, who released a collaborative single with Carson County Band, titled "Bad Luck Feeling"/"Back Home" under the banner the Meating. They toured until August 1970 when Taylor left to join Chain, the move proved fruitful with the hit single "Black and Blue"/"Lightning Ground" and the groundbreaking album Toward the Blues.
After their success Chain took a break and Matt Taylor moved to Western Australian in the 70’s. He played solo around Perth and realised Perth was a viable proposition for a blues player to make a living. Many local bands were working five or six nights then. He formed Western Flyer in 1977, released an album 'First Flight' to the open arms of blues fans and played to full houses across Australia.

Western Flyer toured nationally 3 times, did the "Countdown" thing, and released 5 singles. A late seventies release, this is a live album by this blues rock act with the occasional rural overtones. This is their second album, featuring Matt Taylor who brings the blues to the band and Brian Peacock (NZ ex-Procession) who brings a more rural pound, this is a pretty good live album. The playing is good and the band were either very experienced musos or went on to bigger things; Mick Elliot (guitar) had played with Sid Rumpo, Bandicoot and Jim Keays, Bruce Devenish (drums) was a jazz drummer who wrote and played with the jazz band that featured in Rock Mass For Love (see Bakery) back in 71 and played with Phil Manning in 75. James Gillard (bass) occasionally played with Skyhooks and went on to feature in bands such as Broderick Smiths Big Combo, Russell Morris and Mondo Rock.

The final gig for Western Flyer was at the White Sands Hotel in Scarborough. After convincing the hotel manager his new band would fill the hotel the following week The Matt Taylor Band featuring Dave Hole on guitar and Ric Whittle on drums pulled in the promised crowd. This was in the punk era and at that time there was one blues band touring Australia and that was The Matt Taylor Band. After two years Dave Hole left the band and Phil Manning, who was twiddling his thumbs in Tasmania, flew to Perth and joined Matt. The extremely successful ‘Oz Blues’ album was recorded under the name of The Matt Taylor And Phil Manning Band.

Standout track on this album for me is Matt Taylor's first hit single (as a solo artist from 1973) - "I Remember When I Was Young". The rendition on this live set is slightly different to his earlier version with a distinct groove and tempo that makes it a great addition to this recording.
The rip provided was taken from vinyl at 160kps and includes full album artwork (Thanks to Paul at Midoztouch)

Track Listing
01 - Throw Me A Line
02 - Nannup Tiger
03 - Sunburst
04 - Runaway
05 - The Promised land
06 - Again
07 - I Remember When I Was Young
Band Members:
Matt Taylor - Vocals/Harp/Guitar
Brian Peacock - Vocals/Guitar
Mick Elliot - Guitar
James Gillard - Bass
Bruce Devendish - Drums

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Faces - A Nod Is As Good As A Wink (1971)

(English 1970-75)
When Rod Stewart hooked-up with the remnants of The Small Faces in 1969 by hanging round their rehearsal rooms with similarly unemployed pal Ron Wood, he was not universally welcomed. Having been ditched by Steve Marriott, en route to super-group Humble Pie, the three remaining Small Faces were not keen to be anyone else's backing band. Yet overwhelming musical compatibility kept such worries in the background until 1971, when the band's excellent third album coincided with Rod's solo 'Every Picture Tells A Story'.
There has always been a subtle shade of difference between Rod Stewart albums and The Faces albums. Somehow on the latter, Rod has shared more of the spotlight with his cronies. This is definitely the case on Nod... In fact, Stewart only sings lead on two-thirds of the tracks, letting Ronnie Lane step up to the vocal mike for the reminder. And a funny thing happens. Lane nearly pretty much steals the show. His voice is smooth and clear. He knows how to hold a note and draw the humor from a lyric, something he does quite handily on a little refrain entitled "You're So Rude." This is the age-old tale of a young man trapped flagrante delicto, and Ronnie works it for all it's got.
This is still very much Rod's show - it seems as if he must dominate the proceedings whether he wants to or not. Could be his scratchy set of pipes. Could be his effervescent personality. Maybe it's his breath. It doesn't matter. By now everyone's become accustomed to Stewart's extraordinarily appealing style, and from the opening track, "Miss Judy's Farm," on which he takes the love-crazy hero of "Maggie May" farther out into the pastures of raunch, to the closing number, the appropriately titled "That's All You Need," he is neatly in command. .

The material on the record is pretty evenly divided as far as songwriting credits are concerned. "Stay With Me," penned by Rod Wood and Stewart is a cockeyed masterpiece which Rod treats in a properly raucous and rowdy fashion. A nod (and a wink as well) go to Chuck Berry via a smartly moving version of "Memphis." An album of high level hi-jinks which should appeal to even the blindest of horses.
Sadly for the Faces, the follow-up, Ooh-La-La, is best forgotten, and their star waned as Stewart's rose toward the commercial apogee of Atlantic Crossing and stadium anthem "Sailing." The rest is history....

This Rip is taken from CD at 320kps and includes full album artwork. I have also included a bonus double live track "That's All You Need-HonkyTonk Woman" which was recorded by John Peel for the BBC in 1971).
Track Listing
01 - Miss Judy's Farm
02 - You're So Rude
03 - Love Lives Here
04 - Last Orders Please
05 - Stay With Me
06 - Debris
07 - Memphis, Tennessee
08 - Too Bad
09 - That's All You Need
10 - That's All You Need / Honky Tonk Woman (Bonus Live)

.Band Members:
Rod Stewart (Lead Vocals)
Ronnie Lane (Bass Guitar)
Ronnie Wood (Guitar)
Ian McLagan (Keyboards)
Kenny Jones (Drums, Percussion)
The Faces Link (95Mb) New Link 05/05/2020

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Steve Hillage - L (1976)

(English 1975-92)
Steve Hillage was born in London 2nd August 1951.
He was a member of 'Uriel'/'Arzachel', 'Khan' and the seminal space fusion band 'Gong'. In 1975 he made his first solo album "Fish Rising", soon after he left Gong and released a series of studio LP's between '76 ("L") and '83 ("And Or Not") and two live-albums entitled "Live Herald" ('78) and "BBC Radio 1" ('92). Steve Hillage, 'the hippie from outer space', will be remembered as one of the main inventors of the space rock, his unique guitar play inspired later progrock bands like 'Ozric Tentacles' and 'Porcupine Tree'. The first solo-album "Fish rising" is the Hillage's most acclaimed record but my favorite album is definately 'L'.
'L' was recorded primarily in New York, at the Secret Sound, Woodstock, N.Y., and was produced and engineered by Todd Rundgren, using musicians from Todd Rundgren's band Utopia and others.
According to liner notes supplied with the US pressing, Rundgren had only just become aware of Hillage, and following a letter from Hillage to Rundgren, and a reply from Rundgren, Hillage travelled to New York to meet, and the agreement to work together flowed from that.
The cover features a clean shaven Hillage (most of the publicity shots of Hillage during the 1970s show him with a full beard) holding his guitar, brightly backlit.
Unusually for Hillage, half the songs on this album are covers. "Hurdy Gurdy Man" was written by Donovan "Om Nama Shivaya" was written by Kesar Singh Nariula and Uma Nanda and "It's All Too Much" was written by George Harrison and originally appeared on the 1969 Beatles album, Yellow Submarine. It is also interesting to note that the track "Electrick Gypsies" was featured in an episode of the British T.V series "The Young Ones" when Neil, while working as an English Bobby, has to raid his hippie friend's party for drugs and ends up sharing a joint with him instead !
The original Virgin catalog number for this album on vinyl was V2066. An American pressing was issued on Atlantic Records, catalog number SD 18205.
The rip provided here was taken from vinyl at 256kps and includes full album artwork.

Track Listing
01 Hurdy Gurdy Man
02 Hurdy Gurdy Glissando
03 Elecktrick Gypsies
04 Om Nama Shivaya
05 Lunar Musick Suite
06 It's All Too Much
Band Members:
Steve Hillage (electric guitar, guitar synthesizer, vocals, synthesizers, shenai)
Don Cherry (trumpets, bells, voice, tamboura)
Miquette Giraudy (voice, vibes)
Larry Karush (tabla)
Sonja Malkine (15th century hurdy gurdy)
Roger Powell (piano, synthesizers)
Kasim Sulton (bass)
John Wilcox (drums)

Sorry, but album appears to be available from Amazon

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Jo Jo Zep & The Falcons - Live, Loud & Clear (1978)

(Australian 1975-84)
Jo Jo Zep and the Falcons is the group which started one of Australia's most talented musicians, Joe Camilleri, making music of his own. It didn't happen straight away, but it did happen.
By the time Jo Jo Zep and the Falcons was formed in 1975 Maltese-born Joe had already spent some ten years in the Melbourne music scene, and become one of its mainstays, well-known and admired amongst his peers. From mid-sixties R&B group the King Bees he moved to blues purists the Adderly Smith Blues Band, who sacked him for sounding too much like Mick Jagger and for being too much of a showman, neither of which he could help. Joe was just doing what came naturally, but Adderly Smith took themselves very seriously, priding themselves on educating audiences on where the songs the Rolling Stones were recording originally came from. Joe spent the early seventies in more innovative, even eccentric bands like Lipp and the Double Dekker Brothers, the Sharks and the Pelaco Brothers (the latter with Stephen Cummings of the Sports).
In late 1975, Ross Wilson was still waiting out his Daddy Cool/Mighty Kong recording contract, keeping himself busy by producing Skyhooks. He also decided to produce a version of Chuck Berry's 'Run Rudolph Run', the kind of retro rocker Daddy Cool used to record, as a one-of Christmas single for Mushroom Records.
Since contractually he couldn't perform the vocals himself, Ross asked musician around town Joe Camilleri to sing and play on the record, and front it. In Maltese "Joe" is "Zep". The name put on the single was Jo Jo Zep and his Little Helpers. To promote the single it seemed a good idea to put together a scratch band comprising some of the other people who had worked on the record, more Ross Wilson cohorts. On stage they called themselves Jo Jo Zep and The Falcons. The single wasn't a hit, but the band stayed together. When Ross Wilson formed his own Oz label, he signed the band and produced their records. The first Falcons single 'Beating Around The Bush' was one of the tracks on the Ross Wilson soundtrack for a movie, also called 'Oz'. The band had become an outlet for another of Ross Wilson's songwriting proteges, Wayne Burt, who wrote great songs in that r&b/soul idiom that was the Falcons' stock and trade in the beginning (extract from Howlspace)
After recording the albums 'Don't Waste It' (which contained their hit single "Security") and 'Whip It Out', the mini-albums 'Live, Loud and Clear' (which managed to reach #53 nationally in August 1978, with lead track "The Honeydripper" receiving most of the airplay) and 'So Young' (the title of which was covered by Elvis Costello) for Oz Records, the band and its shifting cast of players - found themselves at Mushroom Records. By this stage Wayne Burt had left - to be replaced by Tony Faehse (who had played in Alvin Stardust's band) - and the composing duties were thrown over to Camilleri and his colleagues. Soon afterwards, the ebullient Wilbur Wilde, who had been an integral member of Ol' 55, also joined the band, although he had already played on previous albums as a sessions player.
But by this stage the sound of the band was changing and by 1982's sophisticated 'Cha' album and its hit single 'Taxi Mary' it was just called Jo Jo Zep, minus the Falcons and plus Jane Clifton, Joe Creighton and others. Even a tour of America (which by all accounts was a disaster) failed to stop the eventual demise of the group. Ironically, Camilleri soon got back to his roots and went on to form the even more successful Black Sorrows. A brief national tour to support the 1984 compilation saw the Camilleri/Wilde/Burstin / Faehse/Power/Young line-up appear for the last time until that famed reunion in 2001 and the brand new album! (Extract from Joe Camilleri's Website)

Jo Jo Zep and the Falcons were added to the list of acts to be inducted into the 2007 ARIA Hall of Fame. [Quote: The announcement of the new inductees follows last month's initial list featuring the Hoodoo Gurus, Marcia Hines and Frank Ifield
"I'm chuffed. I think the Falcons did play a part in the Australian music explosion," Jo Jo Zep and the Falcons frontman Joe Camilleri told
"I'm happy it's been acknowledged. The Falcons were a band out of time. What we played wasn't what was being played. It was an R&B/reggae sound in the time of flares and funk and pop music. Somehow we slotted in." The Hall Of Fame inductions will take place in the Plaza Ballroom at Melbourne’s Regent Theatre on 18 July.]

The 'Live, Loud and Clear' 12" EP was recorded at Martini's in Carlton on 22nd/23rd Dec, 1977.
Standout tracks for me are "Ain't Got No Money" and "Girl Across The Street (just turned 18)". I have fond memories of seeing Jo Jo Zep play these tracks, along with many of their other hits such as "Security" and "So Young", on many ocassions at La Trobe Uni, Bundoora back in 1977. They were a big favourite with the Uni crowds at the time and always produced an exciting stage show. I also got to see them play at other venues such as Bombay Rock and Martini's but alas, cannot claim to be in the crowd on the nights which this recording was made.
This Rip was taken from Vinyl at 256kps and includes full album artwork included.
Track Listing
01 - Honey Dripper
02 - Young Girl
03 - Ain't Got No Money
04 - Girl Across The Street
05 - Riding In The Moonlight
Band Members
Jo Camilleri (Vocals, Sax)
Jeff Burstin (Guitar)
Tony Faehse (Guitar)
John Power (Bass, Vocals)
Gary Young (Drums)
Wilber Wilde (Sax)
Jo Jo Zep & The Falcons Link (31Mb) REPOST

Friday, July 10, 2009

Various Artists - Long Live The Evolution (The Best of DoubleJay)

(Australian Bands 1976/77)
Now here's another true rarity, especially for those outside of Sydney. This is an album of specially recorded live performances by a wide range of popular Australian acts of the mid 70's. It was only ever given away as a prize to listeners to the then new and groundbreaking station DOUBLEJAY (2JJ). Some of these tracks ie Jeff St John's which is just brilliant, were never recorded and are unavailable in any other version elsewhere. It also holds the only recording by Adelaide band Tomlin and live recording of Pantha.
2JJ started broadcasting in Jan 1975 on an old ABC standby transmitter
They dived headlong into the stagnant pool of Australian radio and tried with varying degrees of success to stir the waters for a while; to continue the metaphor, to avoid drowning.
2JJ's programming philosophy was to play a broad area of rock/pop/blues/jazz/folk music that you could call “contemporary”, and at the same time remembering the roots of this music, and presenting news, comedy and features for the “young people” the ABC asked them to cater for.
They had several programmers, who listened to music and put records into neat little piles for their disc-jockeys to play on the radio.
Often the disc-jockeys got very artistic, referring to themselves as announcers or broadcasters, and spent hours blending the great sounds at that time, the hits of tomorrow with fascinating information, scintillating wit and sometimes remembering to read out the time.
Other times they came in late, suffering from the after effects of doing various naughty things, and played whatever was lying on the studio floor.

The “Creative Radio”, as they called it, was necessary because 2JJ played music for its own sake, rather than joining in with the old-fashioned Top 40 concept.
Some of them (well all of them, actually) had pretty strange and varied tastes, but what they did have in common was a desire to hear music as it was being played in Australia, day at that time.
So with their 16 track mobile studio, plus a few nice indoor studios at the ABC, 2JJ recorded the bands, singers, players and songwriters that they thought had talent or something to say or potential or any of the things that their publicists would one day claim to have known about all along.
2JJ had a lot of faith in Australian music, not just as a commercial product (good luck, get rich on it if you can), but as a continuing and developing part of all our lives. Long live the evolution !
The rip included here was taken from Vinyl in FLAC and MP3 (320kps) format and contains original album artwork. (Thanks to Micko at Midoztouch)
Track Listings
01 Skyhooks - Party To End All Parties
02 Dragon - Blacktown Boogie
03 Jo Jo Zep & The Falcons - If It's Love You Want You Can Count On Me
04 Pantha - Rushcutter Bay Heartbeat Reggae
05 Jeff St. John - I Can Hardly Wait For Summer
06 Renee Geyer - It's Been A Long Time
07 AC/DC - Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
08 Ariel - Keep On Dancing
09 Tomlin - 65 Directory
10 Radio Birdman - Burned My Eye
11 Feather - Free And Easy
12 Finch - Short Changed Again
Long Live The Evolution MP3 (67Mb) New Link 15/09/2018

Long Live The Evolution FLACS (302Mb)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Pantha - Doway Do Doway Do (1975) + Bonus Tracks

(Australian 1975-77)
Along with Pirana (another Sydney band in the early 1970's), Pantha were influenced by the Santana hall mark of using rock over a Latin beat. Their music was an unusual hybrid of rock, jazz, Latin American, West Indian and even occasional Zappa-like tracks.
Even though these guys were obviously channeling the Osibisa/Santana thing, they were doing it with immense fun. Exuberant frontman Paul Curtis was a good vocalist and flamboyant percussionist and other members, apart from Jack Wilson on bass, included sensational guitarist Roger Pell (ex-Kush), fluid keyboard player Danny Bourne (who later joined Mick Fettes, ex-Madder Lake, and Thank God You're Here's Shane Bourne [brother?] in Bandicoot), and, later, drummer Barry Cram (who went on to play with hard rock bands Avalanche and Contraband). Conga player Peter Lee who later switched to drums was not the same Peter Lee who was drummer with similarly funky band Stylus.
The band had one line-up change in their time together, with Barry Cram replacing Adriane Paine on drums and Jose McLaughlin replacing Dannie Bourne on keyboards.
Pantha supported the Doobie Brothers on their "Stampede Across Australia" Tour at Festival Hall, Melbourne in 1976.
Pantha only released three singles and one album (on the Wizard label) during their short lifespan and were recorded live at the DoubleJay studio concert on April 12th, 1977, with a track entitled 'Rushcutter Bay Heartbeat Reggae'
Their album was recorded at Trafalgar Studios, Sydney and was produced by Roger Pell and John Sayers.
My favourite track would have to be 'Bar Diddlyah Bordraux' as it sounds so much like Osibisa, who I also enjoy.
This Rip was taken from vinyl at 320kps and includes full album artwork (thanks to Midoztouch). For your enjoyment, I have also included a live track from their JJ concert in 1977 "Rushcutter Bay Heartbeat Reggae", and a later single "Happiness"/"Life Dreams" along with its accompanying publicity poster.

Track Listing
01 - I Am Not Afraid
02 - Pantha's Overflow
03 - All Things Below
04 - Doway Do, Doway Do
05 - Bar Diddlyah Bordraux
06 - Spiritual Sky
07 - Blue House
08 - Happiness (Single Side-A)
09 - Life Dreams (Single Side-B)
10 - Rushcutter Bay Heartbeat Reggae (live bonus track)

Band Members:
Paul Curtis (Lead Vocals & Percussion)
Roger Pell (Guitar)
Dannie Bourne (Keyboards)
Jack Wilson  (Fretless Bass)
Adrian Payne (Drums)
Peter Lee (Congas Percussion)

Pantha Link (72Mb)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Captain Beyond - Sufficiently Breathless (1973)

(U.S Band 1971-79)
.They are now a sextet of more diversified, Latin-flavored proficiency, and their refreshed method of attack is more than well-presented by Captain Beyond's newest effort, Sufficiently Breathless. "We like to call Captian Beyond's new sound 'space Latin-rock' " explains drummer and new member Marty Rodriguez. "There's a unique fusion of the two styles within the band now, and it feels great"
Self-produced, Sufficiently Breathless was completed in the relaxed confines of the Record Plant in Sausalito after the basic tracks had been laid down at macon's Capricorn Sound Studios.

The direction towards new ground began several months ago with the addition of timbales and congas ace Guille Garcia. An overwhelming successful attempt at supplementing Captain Beyond's percussion section, vocalist Rod Evans and lead guitarist Rhino had decided that the group was long-overdue for some spirited Latin-rhythms. "I was playing around Miami," Guille recalls his early days, "in a lot of Latin-soul groups and doing sessions here and there for people like Stephen Stills and Stevie Wonder. That was before I came out to LA as part of Claudia Lennear's band and met everyone in Captain Beyond. I had always wanted to be in a group I felt a part of and not just a back-up musician. So when they asked me if I wanted to join their band, I said I would because I know it would be just that. A band."

Prior to the date Captain Beyond was to begin work on Sufficiently Breathless, drummer Bobby Caldwell, and original member, amicably parted company with the band. Says Rhino, "We had to take time out apart from each other." A hasty replacement with an English drummer named Brian (They can't recall his last name) provided inadequate when his services fell far short of meeting Captain Beyond's exacting studio recording standards. Guille wasted no time in calling up from Miami veteran drummer and buddy nonetheless, Marty Rodriguez. Needless to say, Marty's style meshed perfectly with his fellow group-members and Sufficiently Breathless began its production.

Captain Beyond 1973 (Promo Photo), from left to right: Rhino, Lee Dorman, Reese Wynans, Rod Evans, Marty Rodriguez and Guille Garcia
The third new Captain Beyond member is pianist Reese Wynans, formerly part of Boz Scagg's group. A good friend of Rhino's, when Reese heard that the band was cutting tracks in Macon, he visited the studios as a crony and ended up part of the group. Reese couldn't be more happy and content. "While I was there," Reese remembers, "they asked me to play keyboards on one song and it worked out well. I went back to my home in Sarasota and they called me to ask if I would finish the LP with them. We all liked the way it turned out, so here I am. I'm glad to be a part of the band"
Reese Wynans remembers: "Captain Beyond was a great band to play with, but from the management side it was terribly organized... I was very poor at that time, living in somebody´s else garage, so I needed to work and had to quit. I played on all the songs on "Sufficiently Breathless", except the title track. I only played one show with them..." (extract taken from a 1973 Press Release C/-

Although I own the LP, this rip was taken from CD at 320kps with full album artwork. Enjoy

Track Listings
01 - Sufficiently Breathless
02 - Bright, Blue Tango
03 - Drifting In Space
04 - Evil Men
05 - Starglow Energy
06 - Distant Sun
07 - Voyages Of Past Travelers
08 - Everything's A Circle
Band Members
Rod Evans (Vocals)
Larry 'Rino' Reinhardt (Guitar)
Lee Dorman (Bass)
Marty Rodriguez (Drums)

Reese Wynans (Keyboards)
Guille Garcia (Timbales and Congas)
Sufficiently Breathless Link (75Mb) New Link 13/04/2020

Various Australian Artists - Canned Rock (1979)

(Various Australian Bands)
Canned Rock was a live compilation album on the Alberts label, recorded at Sydney's Parammatta Gaol in 1979. The album was dedicated to the National Body of "the International Year Of The Child" fund. All profits made went to Australian children in need. The initiative to form a "Prisoner's Concert Committee" was inspired by George Crawford who also takes on the role of MC along side Donnie Sutherlan & Rusty Nails.
The Tatts do great versions of "Bad Boy For Love" & "Rock 'n' Roll Outlaw", and Borich pulls out all the stops on two of his better known songs "Snowball King" & "Bellhop Blues".
There's some rare tracks from the woefully underrecorded bands Dallimore (ex Redhouse) & Feather (post Swanee), two more by a little known band called Machine who include two former members (guitarist Steve MacKenzie & keyboardist Alan Blackburn) of New Zealand band Airlord.

Finally for something different to the hard rock onslaught, there are two tracks from the then emerging 'new wave' band 'The Reels', but seem a little out of place on this occasion. Standout tracks for me would have to be the hard hitting tracks by Feather and Borich is in fine form along side his Express members Tim Patridge and John Annas. There is some live atmosphere in these recordings but not what you would expect from a crowd of inmates and prison officers!
Rip taken from Vinyl at 320kps with full album artwork (thanks to Micko at Midoztouch)
Track Listing
01 - Dallimore - Heartbreaker
02 - Dallimore - Long Distance Frog
03 - The Reels - Shame, Shame, Shame
04 - The Reels - Wonder Why
05 - Kevin Borich Express - Snowball King
06 - Kevin Borich Express - Bell Hop Blues
07 - Machine - Someone's Gonna Break
08 - Machine - Last Train
09 - Rose Tattoo - Bad Boy For Love
10 - Rose Tattoo - Rock 'N' Roll Outlaw
11 - Feather - Here With Me
12 - Feather - Bad Blood
Canned Rock Link (74Mb) REPOST

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Jeff St John - Live (1974)

(Australian 1965-76)
Soul-styled rock singer Jeff St John (born Jeffrey Newton in Sydney, 1946) fronted a number of first class bands during the 60s and 70s, including The Id and Copperwine. His performances were memorable not only for his strong, soulful vocals but for the wheelstands and spins he would execute with his wheelchair (Jeff being paralysed from birth by spina bifida)
1965-1971 Lead Vocalist Member of the bands The Id, Yama, and Copperwine with The Id and Copperwine achieving national success, both live and with Top Ten hit singles. ("Big Time Operator" - The Id), ("Teach Me How To Fly" - Copperwine). In May 1970, Wendy Saddington joined musician Jeff St. John's highly acclaimed and well-established group, 'Copperwine', as co-vocalist just after the release of the group's Joint Effort album. Copperwine's line-up consisted of the following musicians: Wendy Saddington (lead vocals), Jeff St John (lead vocals), Harry Brus (bass), Ross East (guitar, vocals), Peter Figures (drums), and Barry Kelly (keyboards, vocals). With St. John temporarily away from the band, Wendy fronted Copperwine for their acclaimed performance at the Wallacia Festival on the central-coast of New South Wales. A live recording of the event, Wendy Saddington and The Copperwine Live was released on Festival's new progressive subsidiary Infinity during '71, which showcased Copperwine's sympathetic backing sensibilities for Wendy's distinctive vocals. Wendy left Copperwine around February 1971.
By mid-1973, beset by personal upheavals, disillusionment and continuing health problems, Jeff decided to throw in the towel and head off to the UK. His farewell concert was a gala event staged at the Sydney Opera House, with the St John Band augmented by friends including Vince Melouney, John A. Bird and Ace Follington.
In May 1974, Infinity issued an album of the concert, Jeff St John Live (included here), while Jeff was playing a handful of low-key gigs in London. He returned to Australia in August that year, to plan his next move. On his return, Jeff formed a new backing band, Red Cloud, and his new single "Mr Jones" / "Acapulco Lady" was released in May 1975. Produced by Martin Erdman and arranged by ex-Blackfeatherguitar-wiz John Robinson, the single was a minor sales success. It was followed up in October by another 45, utilising the same production/arranging team, "Blood Brother" (b/w "Reach Out And Touch Me"). Jeff and Red Cloud maintained a heavy touring schedule during 1975-76, and the singer continued as a popular live draw.
Jeff was the first Oz artist to sign with US imprint Asylum (whose listing included The Eagles, Jackson Browne and Linda Ronstadt) and he released a clutch of impressive singles for the label, capped by his welcome return to the national Top 10 during early 1977 with his scorching version of the Frankie Miller-Andy Fraser track "Fool In Love", a recording which must surely rate as one of the greatest soul records made anywhere, anytime, and must surely rank as one of Jeff's very finest vocal performances. A fresh (and typically thorough) Glenn A. Baker retrospective compilation, Survivor 1965-1975 was released in late 1977.
Jeff continued to record and perform live through the late 70s and into the early 80s, producing some quality rock performances, but in 1983, at the age of 37, he announced his retirement.
From 1983 until now has done a lot of things including collaboration with Universities on various programs for the disabled, lecture tours on the same, and designing plus building a beautifull Harley Davidson trike (the Dinosaur)plus of course fronting Jeffrey St John and The Embers.
Jeff was recently made PATRON for the MOSAIC FAMILY & COMMUNITY SERVICES Organisation. This recently formed organisation provides support for disabled people in many areas, including rehabilitation programs for disabled people unfairly penalised by the legal system. (Extracts from Milesago and Jeff's Website)
This rip was taken from Vinyl at 320kps and includes album artwork (thanks to Micko at Midoztouch). I've also included label scans of my album for your interest. Enjoy!
Track Listing
01 - St John's Chariot
02 - (I Wanna Be A) Survivor
03 - Teach Me How To Fly
04 - Levon
05 - Jailhouse Rock
06 - Children Of The Storm
Band Members:
Jeff St John (Vocals)
Ron Barry (Guitar, Vocals)
Tony Ansell (Piano)
Peter Figures (Drums)
B.J (Bass)
Jeff St John Link (61Mb) New Link 03/10/2013

Friday, July 3, 2009

Band Of Light - The Archer (1974) + Bonus Tracks

(Australian 1972-74)
Band Of Light were formed in October 1972 by Phil Key (vocalist and rhythm guitarist from legendary New Zealand band The La De Da’s). Ian Rilen (later a key member of both Rose Tattoo and X) replaced Peter Roberts (also ex-Freshwater and La De Da’s) on bass after just 3 gigs. Master slide guitarist Norm Roue (who had come from Sydney band Gutbucket) and experienced drummer Tony Buettel (from Bay City Union, Levi Smith's Clefs, Fraternity and Band Of Talabene) completed the line-up.
Key’s first mission was to ensure that Roue’s stinging slide technique was put to good use. If you ever wondered what a nascent Rose Tattoo may have sounded like then this is a good place to start: on a good night, Roue could be matched with the likes of ‘Sleepy’ Greg Lawrie from Carson and La De Das’ Kevin Borich as one of the best slide players in the country, and at the bottom end, Rilen and Buettel always kept the rhythm firm and funky. Band Of Light immediately established a slow, heavy blues style dominated by Roue's stinging slide work. Key also introduced a quasi-religious philosophy into the band's lyrics that espoused racial equality, social justice and spiritual harmony.
The band worked consistently on the Sydney and Melbourne pub/festival/dance circuits, alongside other staple acts of the day like Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs, Carson, Coloured Balls, Chain, Madder Lake and Buffalo.
The band scored a national number 18 hit single in July 1973 with the infectious boogie rocker "Destiny Song"/"Over B" and later released their first album on the WEA label “Total Union”. The album was mostly standard hard rock, slow 12-bar blues and boogie, but the best tracks revealed Band Of Light to be an energetic and funky rock band. The second single "Free Them From Hunger"/"The Cat" in August and the non-album “Moonstruck"/"If" in November failed to chart. Roue, Rilen and Buettel all left Band Of Light in mid-1974. Roue went on to join Buffalo, Rilen helped form Rose Tattoo in 1976 and Buettel went into production work. Key was ready to record the band's second album and called in Billy Williams, previously from Classic Affair, to play bass and Danny Davidson, from Tamam Shud and Kahvas Jute, to play drums, in order to complete the album.
Released in 1974, the album "The Archer" had a much drier sound than the debut and failed to chart. The single "The Archer, A Sagittarian Rhapsody"/"Silus The Sun" was not successful. Ray Vanderby on keyboards and Eddie Hansen, from Ticket, on lead guitar, filled out the basic three piece line-up for live dates, but by the end of 1974 the band had broken up.
Although “Total Union” has been re-released on CD by Aztec music, “The Archer” has remained as a long lost Aussie classic album from the 70’s and therefore deserves a place here at Rock On Vinyl.
"The Archer" has been ripped from Vinyl at 256kps and includes full album artwork and 3 bonus tracks.
01 - The Archer
02 - Our Reason For Being
03 - Silis, The Sun
04 - The Seeker
05 - The Invitation
06 - My Black Swan
07 - Indiogo Heavens
08 - Bread and Wine
Bonus Tracks
09 - Messin' With The Kid (Live at Sunbury)
10 - The Destiny Song (GTK 1973)
11 - Over B (Instrumental B-Side Single)

Band Members
Robin Andrews (drums) 1973-74
Tony Buettel (drums) 1972-73
Dannie Davidson (drums) 1974-75
Eddie Hanson (guitar) 1974-75
Phil Key (guitar, vocals) 1972-75
Ian Rilen (bass) 1972-74
Peter Roberts (bass, vocals) 1972
Norm Roue (guitar) 1972-74
Bill Williams (bass) 1974

Band Of Light Link (71Mb) REPOST

Thursday, July 2, 2009

MacKenzie Theory - Out Of The Blue (1973)

(Australian 1973-74)

My first introduction to MacKenzie Theory was when I heard their live version of 'New Song' on the Sunbury 73' album. How different were they to the mainstream Aussie Rock at that time! Their jazz fusion influence from the likes of Mahavishnu Orchestra and Jean-Luc Ponty were evident, yet they still had their own flavour of jazz / rock blended into some really mesmerizing music. Sudden time signature changes along with guitar-electric viola interplays adding a unique feel to their music. It didn't take me long to find their "Out Of The Blue" album on the record shelves and finding it to be a Mushroom release was cream on the cake. The album cover depicting the band members on a ghostly misty morning (shot by Graeme Webber in the countryside somewhere around Melbourne) only adds to the perception that "Out Of The Blue" was not going to be your average run of the mill Aussie LP. It still remains today as one of my favourite 'avante garde' records in my collection.
MacKenzie Theory formed in Melbourne, Australia in 1973, centered around the guitar of Rob MacKenzie and the viola of Cleis Pearce. At the time there was a very active music scene in Australia with many bands experimenting mainly in the blues/rock direction. However there was a growing awareness of the fusion, and in particular Weather Report and The Mahavishnu Orchestra. It is from this music that MacKenzie Theory and other bands such as Ayres Rock, drew there influences.
They, however, created a style that was unique, no guitar pyrotechnics, but rather etheral chords behind and Pearce's electric viola. The use of a viola instead of a violin was inspired, the deeper tone better suited the music than the high pitch of a violin. MacKenzie was the real leader of the band and the sound centred on his spacey guitar style and very open compositions. Pearce's viola adds a colour that is perfect for the music.
They made just 2 albums to a muted commercial response, available only in Australia and long since deleted. First was "Out Of The Blue" in 1973, was recorded live in the studio, a cheap way of recording an album. Despite this, it worked, as it caught the spontaneity of the band and showed off their jazz credentials. Following the first album they toured around the country, trying to summon some interest, but didn't really succeed. When the time came for the second album, it was clear that the band was about to fold, hence the title "Bon Voyage". Again it was decided to record live, this time in concert. A keyboard was added to the mix with a new rhythm section. The preference for long improvised instrumentals is evidenced by the fact that album comprises of just 4 tracks and I suspect that these are edited. MacKenzie's love of jazz can be seen in the title of the last track, 'Supreme Love', an obvious play on John Coltrane's 'A Love Supreme'. There were a few musicians at that time playing the violin in fusion, most noteably, Jerry Goodman in The Mahavishnu Orchestra, Jean Luc Ponty and Michal Urbaniak. Pearce sounded like none of these. Likewise, no one sounded like MacKenzie on guitar and it is this that creates the unique sound and makes the band so interesting. Futhermore, their excellent musicianship and improvisatory skills make this a forgotten classic.
The band had ceased to exist by the time the album came out and from the cheap cover one assumes that label boss, Michael Gudinski (founder of Mushroom records), couldn't see a profit. Both MacKenzie and Pearce disappeared from the scene completely and as far as I am aware, have not played since (Extract from Milesago).
This rip was taken from Vinyl at 256kps and includes full album artwork. I am also including two live tracks taken from 73/74 Sunbury concerts as bonus tracks ripped at 160kps.
Track Listing
01 - Extra Terrestrial Boogie
02 - O
03 - Opening Number
04 - New Song
05 - Out Of The Blue
06 - World's The Way
[Bonus Tracks]
07 - Supreme Love (Live at Sunbury74)
08 - New Song (Live at Sunbury73)
Band Members:
Rob MacKenzie (Guitar)
Cleis Pearce (Electric Viola)
Mike Leadabrand (Bass)
Andy Majewski (Drums)
(Jan 6, 2010)
Sorry - album just released by Aztec Music (please support them)