Thursday 11 December 2008

MAYFLY - Same (Delicate Dutch Folk Psych - 1973)

In 1970, a group was founded in Bergen, N.H. by the name of Guruperide. In 1971, the name of this soft rock group was changed to Mayfly.

A delicate and soft folk rock album, similar to Tudor Lodge or The Trees but with a pop twist. Most of the songs are short, and don't tend to evolve much, with lovely instrumental passages of acoustic guitars, violin, some horns (especially flute), nice vocal harmonies and the occasional piano solos. The album flows well from start to finish, conveying a pleasant state of mind, this would be wonderful for an afternoon or a chilly evening.
(Review by bilbo1742 on

Members :

Gustaaf Verburg (vocals, bass, guitar and piano)
Onno Verburg (vocals, guitar)
Ide Min (vocals and electronic instr.)
Maarten Min (vocals, drums)
Huub Nijhuis (bass, cello)
Arie de Geus (piano and violin)

New link :

This group made one of the best Dutch progressive folk albums in a poetical style similar to several British groups (Spirogyra, Fuchsia, Beatles) or even the first album by the German group Hoelderlin. What makes it so strong are the expressive vocals of Maarten Min, enchanting melodies, a reflective or sorrowful mood and good English lyrics. This is typified by tracks such as "Dawn Of An Old Man's Life" and "Lemoncake", although a few tracks are lighter in mood and more influenced by the folk-style of late 60's Beatles or Honeybus. An album that easily stands out of the crowd and therefore strongly recommended.
(Asbjørnsen - Scented Gardens Of The Mind)

LISTEN - Same - Great Xian downer Folk Psych LP (US - 1973)

Four longhaired teen guys and their excellent homemade acoustic rock endeavor with relaxed guitars-only wholesome earthy in-tune-with-nature sound. The songs are moving, sorrowful, hypnotic, melancholy, sincere, deeply meditative - the guy I got this from thought they sounded like Azitis unplugged and I’m inclined to agree. Nice dreamy atmosphere from the plaintive harmonies and interplay of the three guitars, bringing a moody surreal presence to songs like ‘Clouds And Suns’, ‘Why’, ‘Jesus Love’, ‘Forgive’, ‘His Face’, ‘Chapel’ and ‘Nows’. Upbeat strummed moods on ‘Prisoner’s Prayer’ and the brisk jangly opener ‘Spring Thing’. ‘Relativity’ and the mostly instrumental ‘The Unknown Sea’ are spoken poems backed by acoustic guitar. The guys got their start at a talent show in 1970 at Camp Lutherhoma in eastern Oklahoma. Really strikes a chord. The album has recently gotten a reputation among psych collectors and can now go for some large dollars.
(Taken from

Link :

Another unknown gem ! Don't miss it !!!

MELLOW CANDLE - "Swaddling Songs" (Irish Prog Folk - 1972)

From Dublin, Ireland, MELLOW CANDLE specialised in imaginative psychedelic folk rock and early progressive rock, with the singing talents of two ladies (Alison WILLIAMS and Clodagh SIMONDS), in addition to bassist Frank BOYLAN, drummer William MURRAY and guitarist Dave WILLAIMS. The music displayed a prodigious degree of natural talent for songwriting, harmonizing, and arrangement.

"Swaddling Songs" debut album is rich in varied and a true sonic marvel of beauty and simple melodies, and, most of all, a blending of two of the most beautiful voices in all of music. This is a fantastic album that deserves new discovery.

Track Listings :
1. Heaven Heath (3:00)
2. Sheep Season (5:01)
3. Silver Song (4:26)
4. The Poet And The Witch (2:51)
5. Messenger Birds (3:39)
6. Dan The Wing (2:45)
7. Reverend Sisters (4:21)
8. Break Your Token (2:27)
9. Buy Or Beware (3:05)
10. Vile Excesses (3:14)
11. Lonely Man (4:28)
12. Boulders On My Grave (3:40)
13. Feeling High (2:23) Bonus track
14. Tea With The Sun (3:18) Bonus track
Total Time: 48:46

Line-up/Musicians :
- Frank Boylan / bass
- William Murray / drums
- Clodagh Simonds / vocals, keyboards
- Alison Williams / lead vocals
- David Williams / guitar, vocals

Don't miss this very great album !!!

Link :

IKARUS - Same (Germany 1971)

IKARUS played progressive rock that sometimes was in the vein of VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR. The sound is dominated by emphasis on guitar and organ interplay, but the use of flute, saxophone and clarinet add more color to their compositions. A solid album.

Track Listings :
1. Eclipse: (15:24)
a) Skyscrapers
b) Sooner or later
2. Mesentery (6:11)
3. The raven (including "Theme for James Marshall") (11:43)
4. Early bell's voice (7:43)
Total Time: 41:01

Line-up/Musicians :
- Lorenz Köhler / lead vocals
- Wolfgang Kracht / bass, back vocals
- Jochen Petersen / acoustic & electric guitars, alto & tenor saxes, flute, clarinet, back vocals
- Bernd Schroder / drums, percussion
- Manfred Schulz / guitar, lead vocals (4), back vocals
- Wulf-Dieter Struntz / organ, piano

A very good addition for your Krautrock collection !!!

Link :

Enjoy, it's one of my favs from the german scene !!!

Monday 17 November 2008

SERENE - Serene - Germany - 1979

Symphonic and melodic hard-rock band with techno touches, akin to mid-70's style Birth Control. Drummer Jim McGillivray was in between having left Epitaph and joining Eloy, there are comparisons musically here to both bands. In fact Serene aren't original at all, but do perform a competent brand of progressive rock with wide appeal.

Peter Wolk (vocals), Achim Kirschning (keyboards), Berny Töberg (guitars), Lothar Heimberg (bass), Jim McGillivray (drums)

SERENE LP Lava TCH 81001 (1979)

(taken from "The Crack In The Cosmic Egg" light version)

Enjoy !!!

Sunday 5 October 2008

ERIK - Look Where I Am (US Folk Psych - 1968)

Initially posted on, thanks to Leonard.

Here’s another obscurity released on the Vanguard label in 1968, Erik Heller’s “Look Where I Am”, which is a nice mixture of folk/psych originals with some great instrumentation including flute, vibes, and some great guitar work.

The 11 tracks on "Look Where I Am" cover the full range of psych/acid folk, from the strong opening track, with its multi-instrumental backdrop of flute, vibes, horns and bells, to the voice-and-guitar of 'Why Come Another Day' to the heavy fuzz guitar of 'You Said/But I've Got My Way'. There's even a long, soulful Davis-esque muted trumpet passage on 'Lights Across The Field'. The album has a dreamy, almost wistful Donovan-like feel, with tons of acoustic guitar and ethereal flutes.

Track Listing :

01. Look Where I Am (Well It's Right Over Here)
02. Painted on the Wall
03. Dead Afternoon Song
04. Be Off Man
05. Why Come Another Day
06. You Said/But I've Got My Way
07. Lights Across the Field/Bright Lights Across the Field Too
08. Sweet Eyes Of
09. Georgann
10. Untitled Number 2
11. Triumphant Breaking Bottle

Link :

1968's Look Where I Am (VRS9267) remains one of the Vanguard label's undiscovered gems.

Saturday 4 October 2008

Michael Head & The Strands - "The Magical World Of The Strands" - UK Psych Folk - 1997

Liverpudlian Mick Head started to make music with The Pale Fountains, a Love-obsessed early-'80s band whose tenure with Virgin records fell apart after two albums when the A&R man who signed them jumped ship.
Head and brother John regrouped as Shack in the late '80s, recording two albums for Ghetto, the second of which, '91's Waterpistol, was abandoned when the master tapes were first thought lost in a studio fire and later left in a rental car in America. In late 1995 a copy turned up, and German label Marina released Waterpistol to rave reviews in the British press, who hailed it as one of the best LPs of the decade.
By this time the Heads were recording as The Strands, although they briefly reformed Shack and signed to London records, only to see the label go under. On The Magical World of The Strands, Mick and brother John (genius twelve-string picker who also contributes a song of his own - the spare, elegaic "Loaded Man") choose folk music as their vehicle, strumming through arrangements that are gentle and uncluttered. Sympathetic strings graze "Something Like You" as it passes, never distracting the melody or dominating the mood. Was it German label Marina that had come to the rescue of 'Waterpistol'; now it was the turn of French label Megaphone, who offered Mick a small sum to make an album for them. 'The Magical World Of The Strands' was the result, and it underpins this whole story, making it worth the telling. If 'Zilch' was Mick at his most socially concerned, then 'Magical World ...' sees him in about as other-worldly a state as it's possible to record. It's an instrumentally beautiful record, totally idiosyncratic, rightly titled magical - alluding to a fantasy world beyond reality, or of heightened reality. Songs such as 'Something like you' and 'Fontilan' are liquid, sleepy, and impressionistic. Others - 'Queen Matilda', 'Hocken's Hey - are folk songs in the truest sense, mythical and timeless.

Track Listing :

01. Queen Matilda
02. Something Like You
03. And Luna
04. X Hits The Spot
05. Prize
06. Undecided
07. Glynys And Jaqui
08. It's Harvest Time
09. Loaded Man
10. Hocken's Hey
11. Fontilan


This is an album of exquisite beauty. Very few albums are made like this anymore-music stripped to the basics. Lovely songwriting and beautiful musicianship. Imagine "Bryter Layter", "Astral Weeks", "Forever Changes" and "Harvest" and you are getting somewhere near the sound of this superb album. (Review written by an anonymous customer on

Not to be missed, it's a pretty unknown gem !!!

Saturday 20 September 2008

DICKENS - Royal Incarnation (French Organ-Driven Psych - 1969)

French psychedelic rock - did it exist? Yes, but not exactly in abundance, and mainly restricted to singles and EPs (Les Goths, Tac Poum Systeme). One of the few exceptions to this is the ultra-rare album by Dickens. These guys were probably well acquainted with the US underground bands, at least judging from "Ange De Lune", a French adaption of a song recorded by the American group Genesis. Apart from that, the group played their own material, with great guitar and organ driven psych comparable to the heavy LA sound (Iron Butterfly and Doors). Serge Baumer later played in the group Treponem Pal.

Track listing :
01 - Cataclysme
02 - Genese
03 - I Wanna Love You
04 - Ange De Lune
05 - Reve Et Fumee
06 - Genocide
07 - Ain't Got..And That's Better
08 - Sugar Woman
09 - Opus

Line-Up - Musicians :
André Chabloz - vocals
Jean-Claude Tissot - guitars
Jacques Minary - keyboards
Jean-Claude Bertin - bass
Serge Baumer - drums


Really interesting release ! Listen to "Génocide" - A must !!!
Recommended to all Psych-Prog lovers !

LANDBERK - Lonely Land (Very great Swedish Progressive Rock - 1992)

On the debut album "Lonely Land" these guys almost openly recreate the sound of the '70s, actively and effectively using such famous (and popular) keyboard instrument as Mellotron (The Keeper of the string samples). A lot of acoustic piano, and some songs feature even accordion. Cold, Northern music with slow dramatic themes and quite complex arrangements slightly influenced by such bands as Van Der Graaf and PFM. Keyboards play a prominent role here, though often you can hear excellent sad guitar solos.
If you haven't heard the T2 "It'll All Work Out In Boomland" version of 'No More White Horses' and want to - check out the post on this blog ! It has blistering guitar work from the (then 17 year old) Keith Cross.
Please note this is the English version of "Riktigt Akta" which is their Swedish first album in 1992.

01 - Waltz Of The Dark Riddle
02 - The Tree
03 - Pray For Me Now
04 - Song From Kallsedet
05 - No More White Horses
06 - You And I
07 - Lonely Land

The music here is pretty simple (especially harmonically speaking), it creates a nice, melancholy mood using mellotron, flute, and guitar to good effect. Vocals for the most part are quite laid-back, fitting the slow, plodding mood of the disc. Guitar solos form the only real breaks from the broodingness of the music, and even those are somewhat cold: either chilly acoustic work (a la Robert Fripp's acoustic runs in "Cirkus" from Lizard) or a dirty, tortured tone from the electric guitar. Few specific influences come to mind, though there are definite similarities to early King Crimson, certain Änglagård passages (it's worth noting, though, that Riktigt Äkta was released before any Änglagård albums), quieter Anekdoten pieces, and perhaps the more mellow compositions out of 1970s Italy.

Line-up/Musicians :
- Andreas Dahlbäck / drums
- Stefan Dimle / bass guitar
- Reine Fiske / lead & acoustic guitar
- Patric Helje / vocals, rhythm guitar
- Simon Nordberg / Mellotron, Hammond organ, piano, accordian

This is a worthy release for all fans of Scandinavian prog !!!

Link :

One of my favs since years and years !!!

FRUMPY - "2" (German Hard Prog - 1971)

Another milestone in the story of Krautrock !!!

The four musicians who formed FRUMPY were all members of Irishman O' Brian-Docker's folkband The City Preachers, which he founded in Hamburg in 1965. The City Preachers played an excellent blend of American and British folk music and had, sometimes, over a dozen people on stage. Discontent with singer Dagmar Krause, drummer Carsten Bohn left the City Preachers in November 1969 and took singer Inga Rumpf, French keyboarder Jean-Jacques Kravetz and guitarist Karl-Heinz Schott with him to form FRUMPY. In spring of 1970, FRUMPY started a successful tour of France. The same year, they went on a 50 concert tour with SPOOKY TOOTH, and played with YES, HUMBLE PIE and RENAISSANCE. In autumn of 1970, FRUMPY released the first album "All Will Be Changed" which contained only own material with the exception of a Richie Havens cover. The Following year guitarist Rainer Baumann joined FRUMPY and played on the band's second LP "Frumpy 2". In Germany, the album was well received and proved that rock music from Germany could live up to international standard. Their music combines jazz, soul and eastern elements with the keyboards as the most important instrument. FRUMPY topped the Musik Express poll as the most popular German rock group of the year and the newspaper FAZ assisted singer Inga Rumpf to be "the country's biggest individual talent". But FRUMPY disbanded after a farewell concert on June 26, 1972. Inga Rumpf, Jean-Jacques Kravetz and Karl-Heinz Schott formed ATLANTIS.

Frumpy’s second album is fine example of early 70’s German progressive and hard rock mixture and excellent addition to prog collections. Four long tracks, with sound dominated by Jean-Jacques Kravetz’s keyboard chords and soloing, good bass playing and energetic and divers drumming, long jamming and obligatory changes of tempo and volume. Guitar is presented right on time to remember that there is a guitar player, while Inga Rumpf’s cracked hoarse loud and shouting voice is in perfect tune with keyboards and guitar sound and almost looks like keyboards or guitar originated.

Track Listings :
1. Good Winds (10:02)
2. How The Gipsy Was Born (10:05)
3. Take Care Of Illusion (7:30)
4. Duty (12:09)
Total Time: 39:46

- Inga Rumpf / vocals
- Jean-Jacques Kravetz / keyboards
- Karl-Heinz Schott / bass
- Carsten Bohn / drums
- Rainer Baumann / guitars

Link :
Initially posted on
Enjoy !!! Inga Rumpf is one of the best female voices in the rock landscapes !!!

JEREMY STORCH - From A naked Window (US singer-songwriter - 1970)

A truly buried masterpiece, a pity it was never re-released since 1970 !!!
Don't miss it !!!

If you've ever heard his name, singer/keyboardist Jeremy Storch is probably known to you for his work with The Vagrants. It's doubtful more than a few folks have ever heard any of his early-1970s solo work, or have a clue of where life took him.
With the breakup of The Vagrants, Storch found himself signed to a solo career by RCA Victor. Released in 1970, Storch's debut "From a Naked Window" teamed him with producers Gary Illingworth, Ernie Aitschuler and Al Schwartz and a host of New York sessions players. The album was actually very good, though anyone expecting to hear something along the lines of The Vagrants' brand of heavy garage rock was bound to have been surprised to hear Storch-penned originals like 'Dream City' and 'Delia'. I was certainly dumbfounded the first couple of times I played the album. Largely abandoning The Vagrants-styled rock and roll grunge, Storch plunged headlong into anguished singer/songwriter mode, occasionally sprinkled with a lysergenic blanket. While the results weren't exactly the year's most upbeat collection, the material proved well suited for Storch's slightly nasal and strained voice. About half of the album was stark singer/songwriter material - 'Playground' and 'Message In the Wind' simply showcasing Storch and keyboards. The rest of the material featured more elaborate arrangements (courtesy of Illingworth), including a couple with classical influences and a couple of fuzz guitar supported efforts ('Man In the Sky' and 'Lady In the Sand'). Interestingly with the exception of the closing instrumental 'Delia', all of the original songs were bound together by Storch's highly personal and strange lyrics - 'Lynn and Sue Are a Country' appeared to provide a nod of approval to lesbian relationships. Fascinating in a weird, hard to describe fashion, the results probably horrified Vagrants fans.

Imagine an American version of Peter Hammill and you'll have a feel for what the set sounded like.

Tracks listing :
(side 1)
01. Dream City (Jeremy Storch) - 3:32
02. Playground (Jeremy Storch) - 4:25
03. Man In the Sky (Jeremy Storch) - 3:48
04. Message In the Wind (Jeremy Storch) - 4:05
05. Lynn and Sue Are a Country (Jeremy Storch) - 3:45
(side 2)
06. In the Right Road (Jeremy Storch) - 3:50
07. Lady In the Sand (Jeremy Storch) - 4:38
08. If You Are Going Home (Jeremy Storch) - 5:18
09. I Feel a New Shadow (Jeremy Storch) - 3:08
10. Delia (instrumental) (Jeremy Storch) - 5:20

Link :

Very highly recommended !!!

Tuesday 9 September 2008

MIKE TINGLEY - The Abstract Prince (US unknown masterpiece - 1968)

I recently discovered this wonderful album on the amazing website of my French friend - .

It's a true hidden treasure, a real gem of early pop-psych-folk, with nice vocals, well-crafted songs, interesting orchestral arrangements and so cool 60's vibes. It's the sole LP of this Californian artist, released in Holland in 1968.

Review by Mr. Mike Tingley :
I have been asked to write a few lines for this LP. But where do I start? I think I am just now realising what has taken place. I will start by thanking to everyone who was involved in the making of this record. And there are so many that added so much to it. My producer, Tony Vos, whose guidance and supervision I couldn't have done without. My recording technician, Gerard Beckers, whose skill in a control room was consistently outstanding. The drummer, Cees Kranenburg and the bass player, Jan Hollesteller, who both demonstrated the only thing that only a good musician can...talent and plenty of it. And speaking of musicians, I really owe a special debt gratitude to Bert Paige, who did all the orchestra arrangements and to all the studio musicians participated in this LP. There is only one word to describe their contribution to this music...beautiful. There are so many other people directly or indirectly involved, that I could never write them at down on this jacket. But my heart felt thanks go out to each one of them just the same. I was also asked to explain each of my songs. I thought a lot about it and decided that it wasn't fair, in a way, to you the listener. Although, when I wrote each song I had a definite idea in my mind, these were only my impressions. I feel that if I were to explain each song to you, it wouldn't give you an honest chance to develop your own impressions. And this is what I think is one of the most important parts of any music: the capacity to be interpreted differently, depending on who the listener is. I would like to end by thanking you, the listener, for giving me this opportunity to express the many emotions and thoughts that are contained in each and every groove of this LP.


44 years later, don't miss the chance to discover this truly gem !!!!!

Monday 8 September 2008

CRASH COFFIN - Same (US Psych - 1974)

Crash Coffin is a fellow from Ohio who put together a band and recorded ten of his songs on a local label back in 1970. Crash had a good grasp on singing, storytelling and songwriting as well as a working knowledge of various musical genres.

This wellknown LP has a couple of great moody psych tracks with excellent vocals like "Alone together" and "God loves the loser", but also some less appealing stuff and is a rather inconsistent backwoods trip all over. The mix of styles is unlikely to make anyone enjoy this from start to finish, but there are some great moments nevertheless.

Track Listing :

01. Massochist Blues
02. Lilly
03. Amazon Jungle
04. God Loves The Loser
05. Get Back In The Kitchen
06. Alone Together
07. Freedom Cake
08. Electric Dog
09. Looney Polka
10. Blue Kazoo


Even if I don't like the whole album, however I decided to post it here because it contains two of my favourite tracks for the eternity : "Alone Together" & "God Loves The Loser" which are absolute semi-heavy psych monsters.
Enjoy !!!

LIZARD - Bad Companions (Australian Progressive Jazz Rock - 1973)

Lizard was one of EMIs Harvest label Australian signings.
Bad Companions is a very rare album full of 70s progressive jazz rock.
A five piece band, three of Lizards members were earlier in White Wine. Prior to Lizard, sax player Dave Connors also appeared in Jade Warrior (UK) and later went to work with Graham Parker and the Rumour.

Track listing :
01. Intro
02. Page Missing From My Book
03. Tarot Cards
04. Rosalyn
05. People People
06. Cecil
07. Rehabilitation Boogie

Musicians :
- Dave Connors - Sax
- Greg Hill - Bass
- Robert Souter - Drums
- Mich Tulk - Guitar, Vocals
- John Wheeler - Keyboards

Link : (initially posted by Munju on PNF)

Listen to the third track "Tarot Cards", you won't regret !!!

GURNEMANZ - No Rays Of Noise (Kraut-Folk - 1977)

This is an awesome album of progressive folk-rock from German group Gurnemanz.
Very much in the style of UK folk-rock ala Fairport Convention or Spriguns, singer Manuela Schmitz has an amazing voice and could give Sandy Denny a run for the money! The male vocalist, Lukas W.Scheel, has got a real Fairport-y delivery also. The musicianship is stellar and the songs, whether sung in English or German, are great. The version of John Barleycorn is one of the best I've heard.
Track Listings :

01. What a Day it is (3:10)
02. Libelle (3:27)
03. Der Schwartenhals (3:43)
04. John Barleycorn (6:29)
05. Givers and Takers (2:51)
06. Morning Song (3:58)
07. Dublin (3:14)
08. Deep Sleep (2:40)
09. Different Ways (2:25)
10. Mattelotte/Kupferschmied (2:40)
11. Die Auswanderer (3:01)
Total Time 37:38
12. My Friend (2:52) (studio 1976)
13. Tra Na Rossan I (2:55) (live 1979)
14. Tra Na Rossan II (3:03) (live 1979)
15. Another Morning (3:44) (live 1978)
16. Among The Rice Fields (5:05) (live 1979)
17. Rain Song (2:07) (live 1979)
18. Wanderer (4:06) (live 1979)
19. November (2:15) (live 1979)
20. November Tea (3:17) (live 1979)
21. Vetrieben (4:15) (live 1978)
22. How Much Love (4:43) (live 1979)
Bonustracks 40:22
Total Time 78:00
Line-up/Musicians :
- Lukas W.Scheel / guitar, vocals, mandolins, banjo
- Manuela Schmitz / vocals, tin-whisles, percussion, recorder, kazoo
- Siegfried Bushuven / bass, kazoo
- Wolfgang Riedel / guitar, backing vocals, percussion, harmonica, bouzouki, flute, kazoo
Not to be missed by anyone who likes the music of Fairport Convention, Steeleye Span, or Mandy Morton/Spriguns !!!

Sunday 7 September 2008

Ton Vlasman - White Rooms With Disintegrating Walls (Dutch Folk gem - 1970)

This is a real Dutch space folk monster from 1970. The title alone tells you where it's coming from! A wildly drug induced album full of dark psychedelia with folky overtones and exotic instrumentation.

One of the best acid/space folk LPs ever. Great stoner hippie folk on the cosmic mystical level; full of weird urban folk and indian effects! Great cover of Velvet's "Pale Blue Eyes" in a spaced out Dylanesque mood!

Link :
(Thanks to Batiar from ProgNotFrog)

A totally original album and very highly recommended to fans of weird eerie psychedelia !!!

SAMSON - Are You Samson? (UK Psych Prog 1969)

Samson was one of the more obscure outfits signed to Andrew Oldham's Immediate label, considering that they got to cut an entire concept album, "Are You Samson?", which was released by the label in 1969. They played the Marquee Club, and were known around London, but never caught on. Keyboard man and singer Ian Kewley later worked with Strider and Limey, before hooking up with Paul Young. This Samson had no relationship to an early '70s English band of the same name.

Tracks :
01. Traffic (3:27)
02. Sleep (2:20)
03. Journey (3:10)
04. Fair (8:44)
05. The End Song (4:44)
06. Mars (4:46)
07. Venus (2:56)
08. Saturn (3:49)
09. Poem for Sam (4:25)
10. Wool and Water - Bonus Track (4:24)

Musicians :
- Ian Kewley (Vocals, French Horn)
- Les Jones (Guitar)
- Norman Findley (Organ)
- Paul Ford (Trumpet)
- Les Olbinson (Percussion)
- Mike Delaney (Drums)

A very special but really pleasant one ! The use of horns set Samson apart somewhat.

SHUTTAH - The Image Maker Vol 1 & 2 (UK Prog Psych 1971)

Only 1 known copy, a perfect acetate.
The Image Maker Vol. 1 & 2 is a real underground concept album with a progressive touch that only needs a few spins to get it right. Well-crafted songs, great vocals, sound-effects, organ and heavy fuzz guitar all combine to make up one of the better albums on the Vertigo label with a good dose of acid in it.
Shadoks Music spoke to Geoff Oliver, the former owner of IBC recording studios, but he could not remember any of the recordings made by Shuttah in his studio -- there were just too many engineers busy at the same time, during those golden days of the London underground, where studios were recording music which became big hits. IBC was famous for making recordings for bands such as The Kinks, The Who and The Beatles, plus many, many others, which leads one to the conclusion that this recording of Shuttah was very expensive to make, so there MUST be a famous musician behind it. The recording, arrangements and concepts are on a very high professional level. Even a search at UK copyright control did not show any results revealing the identity of who, exactly, Shuttah was. Since the original acetates appeared many years ago, this is still a very provocative unsolved mystery of the UK underground. The word Shuttah is a religious reference, if you have a Bible handy. The title of the album The Image Maker also suits the religious meaning.
Double CD containing the only known recording by this unknown UK progressive rock band that survived as an acetate. Funky, atmospheric concept based progressive rock from 1971 with swathes of heavy keyboards, harpsichord, bass, guitar and melodic vocals that at times sounds like Home's "Alchemist" epic. What distinguishes this album is the top quality production and fully detailed booklet and it all adds up to one stunning reissue.

Disk: 1
1. Image Maker
2. Bull Run
3. Cry My Little Darling
4. Lady Smith
5. Village Green
6. Crimp
7. Christmas 1914
8. Fens

Disk: 2
1. Guernica
2. World War II
3. Concrete
4. Imjin
5. She's a Bad Girl
6. Wizard
7. Tell Me Why
8. Conclusion

Links : (Disk 1) & (Disk 2)

Very highly recommended !!!

ICARUS "The Marvel World of Icarus" ( UK - 1972 )

Super rare killer early UK '70s progressive / psych album originally released on Pye. All members of Icarus were huge fans of Marvel Comics, hence the basic concept of this LP. As you can see from the track list, each title is based on a marvel character. Sadly at the time, the head of Marvel found out about this shortly before release and demanded a 50% share of the royalties. Instead of giving in, the record company simply withdrew the LP.

Each of the players on this fast-rocking album with a strong progressive touch presents themselves as comic character, ranging from Spiderman via Conan the Barbarian to the Hulk. The lyrics likewise deal with the vicissitudes of these heroes, lending the album a comparatively agreeable degree of fun. As the instrumental and vocal abilities of the band are no less than good, the only flaw is the lack of outstanding compositions, although a few highlights are present nonetheless. These include the scary intro to Hulk, the propelling rhythms of Conan The Barbarian, almost all flute parts, almost all of the opening track on the 'B' side, Thor and the slightly psychedelic Silver Surfer. All in all fun to listen to.

Tracks Listing:
01. Prologue (0:35)
02. Spiderman (2:53)
03. Fantastic Four (3:21)
04. Hulk (3:04)
05. Madame Masque (3:48)
06. Conan The Barbarian (4:07)
07. Iron Man (2:55)
08. Thor (4:49)
09. Black Panther (3:24)
10. The Man Without Fear (3:57)
11. Silver Surfer (4:05)
12. Things Thing (2:01)
13. Captain America (2:32)
Total Time 41:36

Peter Curtain - Drums
Norrie Devine - Sax, Flute, Clarinet
David Plotel - Guitar
John Plotel - Bass
Steve Hart - Vocals
Iain Hines - Keyboards
Jimmy Wiley - Bass

Link :
(thanks to )

Roky Erickson & The Aliens "I Think Of Demons" (US Psychedelic Rock - 1980)

Erickson co-founded the 13th Floor Elevators in late 1965. He and bandmate Tommy Hall were the main songwriters. In 1966 (Erickson was 19 years old) the band released their debut album The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators. Psychedelic Sounds had the band's only charting single, Erickson's "You're Gonna Miss Me." A stinging post-romantic breakup song, the single remains probably Erickson's best-known work: it was a major hit on local charts in the U.S. southwest, and appeared at lower position on national singles charts as well. Critic Mark Deming writes that "If Roky Erickson had vanished from the face of the earth after The 13th Floor Elevators released their epochal debut single, 'You're Gonna Miss Me,' in early 1966, in all likelihood he'd still be regarded as a legend among garage rock fanatics for his primal vocal wailing and feral harmonica work." In 1967, the band followed up with Easter Everywhere, perhaps the band's most focused effort. The 13th Floor Elevators released their fourth and final album Bull of the Woods in 1968. Due to Erickson's health and legal problems, his contribution to the album is limited, with guitarist Stacy Sutherland taking more of a leading role.

In 1968, while doing a stint at Hemisfair, Erickson started speaking nonsense. He was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and sent to a Houston psychiatric hospital, where he involuntarily received electroconvulsive therapy. The Elevators were vocal proponents of mescaline (peyote), LSD and marijuana use, and were subject to strong attention from police. In 1969, Erickson was arrested for possession of one marijuana joint in Austin. Facing a ten year prison term, Erickson pled not guilty by reason of insanity, which proved to be a mistake. He was first sent to the Austin State Hospital. After several escape attempts, he was sent to the Rusk State Hospital for the Criminally Insane, where he was subjected to more electroconvulsive therapy and Thorazine treatments and held until 1972. When released from the state hospital, Erickson's mental outlook had changed. In 1974, he formed a new band which he called Bleib Alien, Bleib being an anagram of Bible and/or German for Stay, and "Alien" being a pun on the German word "Allein" ("alone") - the phrase in German therefore being "Remain alone". His new band exchanged the psychedelic sounds of The 13th Floor Elevators for a more heavy metal sound that featured lyrics on old horror film and science fiction themes.

"Two Headed Dog (Red Temple Prayer)" (produced by The Sir Douglas Quintet's Doug Sahm) was released as a single. The new band renamed itself Roky Erickson and the Aliens. In 1979, Erickson recorded 15 new songs with producer Stu Cook, former bass player of Creedence Clearwater Revival. These efforts were released in two "overlapping" LPs - TEO/CBS UK, and The Evil One/415 records.

Track listing :

01. Two-Headed Dog (Red Temple Prayer)
02. I Think of Demons
03. I Walked With a Zombie
04. Don't Shake Me Lucifer
05. Night of the Vampire
06. Bloody Hammer
07. White Faces
08. Cold Night for Alligators
09. Creature With the Atom Brain
10. Mine Mine Mind
11. Stand for the Fire Demon
12. Wind and More

Link : (thanks to chrisgoesrock)

Amazing releases from this brilliant disturbed mind !!!

PERRY LEOPOLD "Christian Lucifer" (US Psychedelic Folk - 1973)

This LP was originally recorded in 1973, and it was a tragedy that it never got released. It was a classic psychedelic-folk recording with the artist Perry Leopold at his very peak of creativity. Incredibly the originally tapes were reused after the studio was sold and then a few mix down tapes were scavenged to put this LP (and CD) together by Gear Fab Records.

Leopold's voice is confident and smooth as silk, which lends an airy dreamy ambiance to the compositions. The combination of richly textured instruments such as the flute, bassoon, and cello serves as the perfect compliment to Leopold's vocal style and gentle and warm guitar playing. You may be reminded of some other great groups of the past when you hear this album. CSN&Y comes to mind for their heavenly harmonies and beautiful memorable folk-rock tunes. Fans of The Byrds and Buffalo Springfield may find something to key in on while listening to this as well.

This is one of the finest disregarded recordings that I have ever heard. Thanks to Gear Fab to changing the course of history, and for all of their hard work in keeping the spirit of this music alive. And above all, thanks to the creator Perry Leopold for giving us a much needed blast from the past to credit him with the importance and credibility of his artistry.

Track Listing:
01. Sunday Afternoon in the Garden of Delights (8:51)
02. The Windwill (8:58)
03. The Starewell (4:17)
04. Serpentine Lane (4:30)
05. The Annunciation (5:10)
06. The Journey (6:47)
07. Vespers (5:33)

Charles Cohen - Mini Moog
John Gillaspie - Bassoon, Recorder, Clavinet
David Goldblatt - Cello
Stan Slotter - Flute
Sam Rudin - Percussion, Bongos
Mike McCarthy - Bass (Electric), String Bass
Perry Leopold - Guitar, Arranger, Vocals
Bill Zino - String Bass
Enjoy, it's a pure delicate gem !!!

Tuesday 2 September 2008

Nigel Mazlyn Jones "Ship to Shore" (UK Folk Masterpiece - 1976)

Beautiful and incredibly rare debut album by this UK underground legend still going strong today. Made by a UK folk rock artist often compared to early John Martyn, Nick Drake and Mick Softley the album is filled with haunting tracks featuring electric and acoustic guitar, violin, cymbals and sublime vocal harmonies. The centrepiece of the album is the epic title track, but tracks like the uplifting 'Follow Every Sunset' and the opening 'Singularly fine Day' are waves of summer magic.

Pure class that's highly recommended to lovers of UK folk rock !!!

Track listing :

01. A Singularly Fine Day - 5:23
02. Take Me Home - 6:23
03. The Man And The Deer - 5:36
04. Follow Every Sunset - 3:45
05. How High The Moon - 3:29
06. Reality - 3:42
07. Port Quin Song (The Lady On The Beach) - 3:43
08. Ship To Shore - 11:31
Bonus tracks (Kissing Spell reissue)
09. All Brave Men - 7:13
10. The Hunter And The Lady - 6:23
11. Hunters Tale - 2:29
12. Ships Tales - 1:28
13. Neap Tide - 1:42
14. High Tide - 1:47
15. Frozen Waves - 2:49

Nigel Mazlyn Jones - guitars, bass, waves, vocals
Dik Cadbury - basses, vocals
Johnny Coppin - guitar, vocals
Alleyn Menzies - drums
Jerry Riley - guitar
Rob Lloyd - guitar, mandolin
Martin Mitchell - violin

New link :

Amazing release. In the title track, Nigel Mazlyn Jones reminds me Peter Hammill's best intimist and dramatic moments !!!

Don't miss it !

Sunday 31 August 2008

The Search Party "Montgomery Chapel" (US Xian Psyche Folk - 1969)

A rare religious rock album by a from Wisconsin band who relocated to Sacramento, California. Many of the tracks feature lovely female vocals, although part of Side Two is more acoustic and folky with male vocals.
At its best the album is superb. A mystical atmosphere is created by the floating, melodic psychedelia of songs like When He Calls, So Many Things Have Got Me Down and The News Is You. Just listen and drift away.
("Fuzz, Acid & Flowers" by Vernon Joynson)


01. Speak To Me
02. Renee Child
03. Melanya
04. When He Calls
05. So Many Things
06. You And I
07. All But This
08. Poem By George
09. The Decidedly

Link :
(Great thanks to for this one)

DAWNWIND "Looking Back on the Future" (UK Psyche Folk - 1976)

Dawnwind were formed in 1968 by Jon Harflett and John Perkins. Originally the pair performed as Harflett and Perkins, playing mainly in the Midlands as a semi-professional act. The duo went full time in 1970 and changed name to Dawnwind.
In the early seventies they built a fairly solid reputation as a live act on Club/University/College scene. They also got to tour in the USA, Germany and Holland.
The bands recording history is quite complicated. An album was recorded for the Eden Lable in 1970, "Natural Born Ramblers" and although some copies were pressed Eden went bust before the album could be released. EMI then began to show some interest but although John Perkins sat in playing guitar on Sam Parry's album and Jon Harflett wrote liner notes for a couple of albums, their management Nucleus never managed to get a deal.
In 1974, Norman Davies of Amron approached Dawnwind about making an album, and it was recorded in 1975 at the Mid Wales Sound Studio, with Norman producing and Alan Green as engineer.
Dawnwind were always a duo but many guests appeared at gigs, people could be forgiven for thinking of them as a band. For the Looking Back On The Future album, they used Dana Simmons (American) and Alistair Leacock on back-up guitars and Will Thomas on fiddle and mandolin. Dana sang high harmony on Street-Singer. Jon Harflett was lead vocalist on all tracks except Man Of Stars, Concrete Circles and I'm Sentimental Too. In addition to the tracks used on the album they also recorded a version of Steve Goodman's City Of New Orleans. Both Harflett and Perkins were responsible for the musical arrangements.
Jon Harflett:- "The first pressing was 500 copies for sale in clubs but then everything got very complicated. Norman Davies either sold or just gave up on Amron. Copies of the album then started to turn up in shops (and were still turning up circa 1978). It was fairly widely available in Germany, where it was also bootlegged. It was bootlegged too in the USA in the mid-nineties. Nobody really knows how many copies were printed or sold in total but it's a lot more than most people think despite it being rare now."
Dawnwind split up as a working duo in 1976 but have remained friends to this day. Jon Harflett continued a solo career in and around London until the eighties and then became a University Teacher until ill health forced him into retirement. He has written an autobiography, 'Dancing With The Moon'. John Perkins later founded his own lable (Check out White Eagle Records on the Net). They have been known to turn up in Folk clubs just for old time's sake but have no interest in bringing Dawnwind back. Both are frankly amazed that the album should have become a collector's item.
Jon:- "We have been approached several times about a CD issue but there is a tangled web of copyrights involved and it's never seemed worth it. There are about fourteen sites on the Net with information about Dawnwind - most of it wrong. The only thing that really annoys the two John's is when we're described as a Welsh Band."

(from "The Tapestry of Delights" by Vernon Joynson)

A British counterpart to Spain's Book of Am, America's Trees, and Scotland's Caedmon !!!

Track Listing :

01. Don't Look Now, Karen's Gone to the Moon
02. Concrete Circles
03. Man of Stars
04. Derelict
05. Sam Stone
06. Canticle
07. Who's Passing Dreams Around
08. Street Singer
09. Loving of the Game
10. I'm Sentimental Too
11. Dogs of War
12. Widow With a Husband


A beautifully melodic and intimate album. Though critically praised, it was only issued as a private pressing and was thus condemned to obscurity until its legend began to grow through collectors and bootleggers !!!

Friday 29 August 2008

ZERFAS - "Same" - US Psychedelic - 1973

The structure of the album is impeccable. From the opening moment, it’s obvious you’re in for something truly special. “You Never Win” fades in with a backwards loop, over which a lovely melody appears. It goes on for a while, but could continue for hours more without becoming tiresome. It’s as great and true a musical moment as there has ever been. Rudely, the drums disrupt the calm to begin the body of the song, an updated 60s garage punker with powerful organ. As the song nears the end, the opening melody recurs, only this time it’s played forwards. It’s at this moment that you realize that this album is a true work of art, not just a bunch of great moments but a perfectly conceived synthesis of ideas. If only to prove the point, within a few seconds of the next song, “The Sweetest Part,” we are treated to the most beautiful fuzz guitar riff in history. As the album moves along, all of the eight songs have moments that, while unlikely to match the perfection of the backwards bit or the searing fuzz riff, should send shivers down the most jaded spine.
The songs are enlivened by psychedelic experiments that range from the slowed-down laughter of a tickled child to someone belching the words “mushroom soup.” Not just each song, but each verse is arranged with intricate care, and surprises like the stunning percussion that ends the quiet “I Need It Higher” keep the listener guessing. The two songs that begin side two show a bit of the spirit of 1973. The bouncy “Stoney Wellitz (and its almost trendy moog solo), and “Hope”, with its ocean sound effects and long, layered keyboard solo, are longer and more likely to appeal to, say, prog fans, than the pop-oriented songs on side one. That’s not to say the seem out of place or don’t work, because they do, in spades. And in no time at all, we’re back to massive walls of 60s-inspired psychedelia. The introduction to “Fool’s Parade” is interrupted by a stunning backwards vocal (don’t listen to people who claim it says something; it’s gibberish in both directions.) The body of the song ends after only two minutes, only to be followed by two further minutes of sped-up guitar, slowed-down guitar, space sounds and the aforementioned “mushroom soup” reference.
This is all set-up, though, for the album’s finest moment, the closing “The Piper.” A more ideal pop song is unlikely to exist. From the opening piano trills to gorgeous verses to gorgeous bridge to gorgeous chorus to stunning keyboard solo to the most perfect of the album’s many perfect guitar solos, in just four minutes they’ve done the impossible. They top what came before. The album ends on the final moment of genius; the piano trill returns and then is abruptly cut off, leaving the listener with his or her mouth hanging wide open. Not only has the song itself been framed by the piano, so has the album as a whole; the first and last song share the framing device, and the abrupt end is as compelling as the backwards fade-in.No, this album isn’t completely perfect. I’m not entirely convinced that the speak-singing on “You Never Win” really works, and perhaps the plethora of clever arrangement ideas push both “Stoney Wellitz” and “You Don’t Understand” a verse too long. Oh, and this will never be my own personal favorite album because the lyrics don’t hit home with me in the way something has to in order to be a #1 desert island pick. But musically, there’s no album on this universe I enjoy more than ZERFAS, and no album from which I can discover more new joys after hundreds of listens. The first reissue of this album contains several pages of notes about the band, and presumably gives some idea why they never released any more music. I’ve never found this issue of the record; I’m not sure I even want to know the answer to the many questions I have about these guys. And, oddly, the fact that it was never followed is almost a plus, a way of making sure that this album’s greatness will never be tarnished by the company it keeps. Obviously my view on this album is full of bias; only a few people will love it quite as much as I do. But most will love it almost as much. (Review posted by Arcadium on LostInTyme)

Tracklisting :

01. You Never Win
02. The Sweetest Part
03. I Don't Understand
04. I Need It Higher
05. Stoney Wellitz
06. Hope
07. Fool's Paradise

Link :
(thanks to

Masterful '73 private pressing !!! Another one not to be missed !!!

DRAGONWYCK "Chapter 2" - US Psych Prog - 1972

This group from Cleveland were one of the most promising bands from the early 70´s in that area. After their first legendary 1970 heavy-psych album the keyboardist changed, and the band left their garagey Doors influences to create their own sound.
The music on these well produced stereo-recordings exists only on acetate (10 copies), and drifted more into the British vein of progressive rock, like King Crimson, Pink Floyd or Yes, but also reflects US-West Coast feeling like It´s a Beautiful Day.
By 1972 Dragonwyck was performing Moody Blues´complete 'Days of Future Passed' live on stage (!!!) The 10 original cuts included here, however, are intense and very unique with strong melodies/vocals, heavy guitar solos and an extreme variety of keyboard and vocal sounds an awesome mix of heavy underground rock with classical chamber-music style/elements.
There are 2 bonus tracks from a 45´record which was released in 1974.

Track listing :

01 - Kimberly - 0.32
02 - He Loves You - 3.18
03 - Fire Climbs - 6.41
04 - Relics - 5.11
05 - Freedom Son - 3.57
06 - Lady - 3.47
07 - Run To The Devil - 3.45
08 - Dead Man - 4.15
09 - The Music - 3.14
10 - Forever Only Last A Little While - 4.40
11 - Lovin' The Boys (Single -74) - 3.14
12 - The Music (Single -74) - 3.07

Link (thanks to :

Another buried gem !!!

LOVE "Forever Changes" - US Psychedelic Masterpiece - 1967

I 'm sure most of you already know this masterpiece. But as it's one of my favs for times, I can't let it out of my blog.

One of rock's most overlooked masterpieces, this third album by the L.A. folk-rock outfit led by inscrutable singer-songwriter Arthur Lee sounds as fresh and innovative today as it did upon its original release in 1967. With David Angel's atmospheric string and horn arrangements giving the work a conceptual underpinning, Lee explores mainstream America's penchant for paranoia ("The Red Telephone") and violence ("A House Is Not a Motel") with songs that are as sonically subtle and lilting as they are lyrically blunt and harrowing. Add two gems by Love's secret weapon, second guitarist Bryan MacLean ("Alone Again Or" and "Old Man"), and you've got one of the truly perfect albums in rock history.

Band members:
Arthur Lee : lead vocals, guitar, arranger
Johnny Echols : lead guitar
Bryan MacLean : rhythm guitar, vocals, arranger (lead vocals on "Alone Again Or" and "Old Man")
Ken Forssi : bass
Michael Stuart : drums, percussion, vocals

David Angel (arranger) : arranger, orchestrations

And uncredited contributions from:
Hal Blaine : drums on "Andmoreagain" and "The Daily Planet"
Carol Kaye : bass on "Andmoreagain" (unconfirmed) and "The Daily Planet"
Don Randi : piano
Billy Strange : guitar on "Andmoreagain" and "The Daily Planet"
Neil Young : arranger on "The Daily Planet"
Orchestra: Robert Barene, Arnold Belnick, James Getzoff, Marshall Sosson, Darrel Terwilliger (violins); Norman Botnick (viola); Jesse Ehrlich (cello); Chuck Berghofer (double bass); Bud Brisbois, Roy Caton, Ollie Mitchell (trumpets); Richard Leith (trombone)

Tracklist :

"Alone Again Or" (Maclean, – 3:16)
"A House is Not a Motel" (Lee, – 3:31)
"Andmoreagain" (Lee/Maclean, – 3:18)
"The Daily Planet" (Lee, – 3:30)
"Old Man" (Maclean, – 3:02)
"The Red Telephone" (Lee, – 4:46)
"Maybe the People Would Be the Times or Between Clark and Hilldale" (Lee, – 3:34)
"Live and Let Live" (Lee, – 5:26)
"The Good Humor Man He Sees Everything Like This" (Lee, – 3:08)
"Bummer in the Summer" (Lee, – 2:24)
"You Set the Scene" (Lee, – 6:56)

February 2001 reissue Bonus Tracks :

"Hummingbirds [Demo]" (Lee, – 2:43)
"Wonder People (I Do Wonder)" (Lee, – 3:27)
"Alone Again Or [Alternate Mix]" (MacLean, – 2:55)
"You Set the Scene [Alternate Mix]" (Lee, – 7:01)
"Your Mind And We Belong Together [Tracking Session Highlights]" (Lee, – 8:16)
"Your Mind And We Belong Together" (Lee, – 4:28)
"Laughing Stock" (Lee, – 2:33)

Links : (Part 1) & (Part 2)

To the uninitiated, it helps to know that Love was Jim Morrison's favorite group !!!

SALEM "Same" - Excellent Canadian Progressive - 1995

A pretty unknown band directly influenced by Jethro Tull.
Salem builds its music on twelve string acoustic guitar rhythm and arpeggios and flute melodies with medieval or celtic accents, which reminds me very much of Jethro Tull. The singer does not imitate Ian Anderson, but finds the right voice for the music, and the interventions of violins and keyboards are very appropriate to the context.

For more infos you can visit their website :

Tracks & Durations :

1. The Philosophers In The Forest 4:12
2. The Eagle (Melopee) 5:37
3. Magical Tool 4:16
4. Fields Of Grass 3:41
5. Charles The IIIrd 3:44
6. Karmic Adventures 2:24
7. Monastery 3:45
8. Scenes Of Sorrow 2:31
9. Pilgrim's Park 3:17

Don't miss this rarity, they deserve a wider audience !!!

New link : 

Friday 22 August 2008

Folk och Rackare "Rackarspel" (Swedish/Norwegian Folk 1978)

Swedish/Norwegian folk group starting with vocalist Carin Kjellman and guitarist Ulf Gruvberg, who had released one album "Med Rotter i Medeltiden" ('With Roots In The Middle Ages') on Swedish Sonet '74.

"Folk Och Rackare" ('Folk And Rogues') on the Swedish YTF label '76 found them augmented by fiddlers Kalle Almlof and Jonny Soling, who left that year, but the duo established a long-lasting lineup Dec. '76 with Norwegians Jorn Jensen and Trond Villa both from the Norwegian folk-rock group Folque.

The debut album was "Rackarspel" (1978), but "Anno 1979" on Sonet was far more accomplished, with clearer musical direction. "Stjarnhasten" (1981) continued an innovative fusing of Nordic folk musics, and "Rackbag" on the Swedish Amalthea label '85 found them expanded to a sextet with Affe Byberg and Olle Westbergh, plus guest Richard Thompson. Kjellman's eponymous solo album on Amalthea that same year was a departure, veering away from folk towards rock, including translations into Swedish of songs by Thompson ('How I Wanted To' and 'It's Just The Motion') and Sandy Denny ('Winterwards' and 'Solo'). Kjellman also sang on Thomas Lindahl's Det Krokta Rummet on Amalthea in '87.

Folk Och Rackare never achieved the success outside Scandinavia that their accomplished act deserved; that breakthrough was left to Filarfolket, who became stalwarts on the international folk festival scene in the late '80s-early '90s. Ulf Gruvberg became increasingly important in Swedish radio, responsible for live music broadcasting, and also produced Hedningarna, an influential Swedish group of the early '90s including Swedish and Finnish musicians.

Link :
(Thanks to )

Another very great one posted especially for Dominic from Aumgaia and all Scandinavian folk lovers !!!

CROOKED OAK "From Little Acorns Grow" (Excellent UK Folk - 1976)

Original UK LP on the Folkland label with catalogue number FL 0102.
This is a private pressing from 1976.
This is now a very rare and highly rated UK folk LP with acid and progressive inclinations.
Superb in every way.
Personnel :
Steve Evans : Guitar, Mandolina and vocals
Paul Rogley : Whistle, Mandolina and Cittern
Barry Walker : Fiddle
Amazing album, with great whistle and fiddle solos, vocal harmonies and eleven lovely songs.
Track list :
01. Hold The Lantern High
02. Jimmy Clay
03. Lord Inchyquinn. Fairmoyne Lasses, Sporting Paddy
04. The Morning Lies Heavy On Me
05. Paddy's Green Shamrock Shore
06. The Morning Dew And The Oak Tree
07. Cold Hard Town
08. The Village Fool
09. Kilfonora Jig
10. Green Mountain Home
11. Air; Song Of The Lonesome Boatman
I'm posting it here because it's one of my favs since months and this unknown gem would deserve a wider audience !!!
Especially posted for Dominic ( Aumgaia's guitar player ) ; enjoy it !!!

Wednesday 20 August 2008

ELECTRIC SANDWICH "Same" ( German Heavy Progressive - 1973 )

Electric Sandwich were formed in late 1969 by a group of German students from Bonn. The band initially consisted of four musicians, all of whom had already played with other bands: bass player Klaus Lormann had been playing with "Chaotic Trust"; lead guitarist Jorg Ohlert used to be with "Slaves of Fire"; drummer Wolf Fabian, the founder of the band, had been touring with a band called "Muli and the Misfits", and singer Jochen "Archie" Carthaus sang with the "Flashbacks".

Their own material has been recorded into the legendary Dieter Dirks Studio in Stommeln (1973 Brain catalogue). The music contains typical spaced out, freak n roll improvisations with many jazzy rock ingredients, folkish accents and Mellotron excursions.

What's so fascinating about "Electric Sandwich" is the fact that each of the seven songs is different from the rest even though the band developed a homogeneous sound concept. Asked about the diversity of styles his band toyed around with, songwriter Ohlert replied: "Electric Sandwich are not limited to one single style of music. We change styles, even in the middle of a song, because we want our music to be alive." To achieve this goal the band not only rehearsed every week but also reserved one evening of the week to discuss their respective creative visions. The lyrics deal with stories that complete a full circle from birth to death. In "Nervous Creek", for example, Electric Sandwich tell the story of a river eventually flowing into the sea. "Material Darkness" deals with the life of a city dweller. In the release information, Wolf Fabian comments: "We deliberately like to create an intellectual attitude. We try to design our lyrics in a way that allows a listener with poor knowledge of English to understand them."

Tracklist :

1. China (8:07)
2. Devil's Dream (6:20)
3. Nervous Creek (5:07)
4. It's No Use to Run (4:03)
5. I Want You (5:27)
6. Archie's Blues (4:55)
7. Material Darkness (5:04)
8. On My Mind (3:24) "Bonus track"
9. China (single edit) (3:05) "Bonus track"

Links : (thanks to )
or (thanks to )

Another milestone in the German Heavy Prog story, don't miss it !!!

FRED "Same" ( US progressive - 1971 )

Wonderous previously unreleased US bands recordings from 1970-1974. Coming across like a mixture of trippy folk and electric psychedelic rock, this CD is a revelation! Crystal clear sound quality and long trippy songs with electric violin, electric and acoustic guitars, harpsichord and mystical trippy lyrics.

“Fred” was for sure one of the most talented 70´s groups without an album. In 1971, as the war in Vietnam continued, some college students in rural, central Pennsylvania formed a band and left school behind. That year, they published a 45 rpm single (A Love Song - Salvation Lady) and recorded most of the music on this album, which contains cryptic lyrics and heavenly vocals floating over fuzzed-out guitar, crafty keys, drums and bass like a freight train, and a serene electric violin freshly liberated from the bonds of classical training. Influenced by the likes of Procol Harum, The Band, Traffic, Jethro Tull, It´s A Beautiful Day, Frank Zappa, and King Crimson, they bring a unique sensibility and style to their 10 original pieces, uncannily as fresh today as they were when they were first recorded.

Track List :
01 - Four Evenings
02 - Soft Fisherman
03 - Salvation Lady
04 - By The Way
05 - I'll Go On
06 - For Fearless Few
07 - A Love Song
08 - Booking Agent Blues
09 - Windwords
10 - A Love Song (45rpm Version)

Line-up :
BO FOX - Drums
KEN PRICE - Keyboards
MIKE ROBINSON - Bass, Guitar, Vocals
DAVID ROSE - Keyboards, Violin, Guitar, Vocals
GARY ROSENBERG - Lyrics, Percussion
PETER EGGERS - Drums, Piano

Links : (Part 1)
and (Part 2)
(Taken from this great blog )

Very highly recommended !!! I really love these recordings !

Thursday 14 August 2008

FANTASY "Paint A Picture" ( Excellent UK Prog - 1973 )

Before writing my own review of this album, I have to admit being a bit biased. I really love this style of early English progressive rock, that’s why I named my blog Fantasy. Fantasy's "Paint a Picture" is an example of prototypical progressive rock that appears to be as influenced by The Moody Blues as by King Crimson. In this way, Fantasy compares to Spring, Gracious and Cressida. The band's original guitarist had died accidentally before this was made and subsequently the lyrics reflect issues of loss, madness and an overall questioning of existence. The songs are mostly short (2 -5 minutes) and at their best feel like that wonderful combination of sunshine with a breeze. The sound is generally fairly mellow, but much like the album's beautiful cover it is painted with a diverse and colourful palette. In other words, while most of tempos are relaxed and there aren't that many time changes, there is a lot going on: acoustic guitars, electric guitars, organ, mellotron, bass, and drums all combine to form the main melody, and then, at times, separate to present variations. The exception to this is the seven minute long "Circus." This is generally considered the most progressive song in this set, and it is the most uptempo and varied. However, my favourite is the title track which has a very dream-like feel to it. Their second record "Beyond the Beyond" which was rejected by Polydor in the 70s was released on CD in 1992. This is truly a very great album that I would recommend heartily !!! 

Track Listings : 1. Paint A Picture (5:24) 2. Circus (6:18) 3. The Award (4:52) 4. Politely Insane (3:27) 5. Widow (2:12) 6. Icy River (5:53) 7. Thank Christ (4:06) 8. Young Man's Fortune (3:41) 9. Gnome Song (4:19) 10. Silent Mine (4:39) Bonus tracks (taken from Fantasy “Beyond The Beyond”) : 11. Beyond The Beyond (5:37) 12. Reality (2:58) 13. Alanderie (9:01) 14. Afterthought (5:51) 15. Worried Man (2:56) 16. Just A Dream (3:32) 17. Winter Rose (3:27) 

 Line-up/Musicians : - Paul Lawrence / 12 string guitar, vocals - David Read / bass, vocals - David Metcalfe / keyboards, vocals - Peter James / lead guitar, vocals - Jon Webster / percussion, vocals 

Link : 

(Link first posted by an amazing blog !!!) 

Enjoy !!! It's one of my top hundred "desert island" albums.

PETER HAMMILL "Over" - 1977

Being the singer of one of the most influential British progressive rock bands ever, Peter Hammill’s "Over" is not what you should expect from the man who delivered most of the songs for VDGG.
“Over” is released during one of the last VDGG years. It sounds more as an album of a singer songwriter than as a progressive rock release. “Over” is one of the most intense listening experiences you can imagine.
Clearly the boundaries of musical styles don’t bother Hammill. The listener hears some influences from folk, rock and classical music as well. Hammill is a varied vocalist. His voice is sounding raw, unpolished and very emotional at the same time. Highly original are the vocal harmonies which show many different sides of the man’s voice.
There are members, as ever, of VDGG, in Guy Evans on drums, Nic Potter on bass, and the former String Driven Thing member Graham Smith on violin.
Some tracks are plain acoustic with only one or two instruments present other tracks do have full instrumentation. In either case the overall feeling is sobriety.

Track Listings :

1. Crying Wolf (5:12)
2. Autumn (4:13)
3. Time Heals (8:42)
4. Alice (Letting Go) (5:33)
5. (This Side Of) The Looking Glass (6:57)
6. Betrayed (4:44)
7. (On Tuesdays She Used to Do) Yoga (3:55)
8. Lost and Found (7:11)

Total Time: 46:27

Link :
(Thanks to )

Very rarely does an album have so an intense emotional effect on me !!!

EELA CRAIG "Same" ( Austrian Prog - 1971 )

EELA CRAIG was by far the best known Austrian prog rock band.
This self-entitled album from 1971 is very obscure and known by very few, as it was originally released on a small Austrian label called Pro-Disc. Luckily a small German label called Garden of Delights reissued this on CD.
While their later albums tended to be synth-heavy symphonic prog, this one tends to the bluesy/jazzy psych/prog realm, with the Wurlitzer electric piano dominated (and Hammond organ on only two cuts). The bluesy nature of this album has to do with original guitarist Heinz Gerstmair, and vocalist Will Orthofer, while drummer Horst Waber gave the band that jazzy touch, add that on with the flute, organ, and acoustic guitar of Harald Zuschrader, bass of Gerhard Englisch, and electric piano of Hubert Bognermayr, and you have the original EELA CRAIG lineup.
It's full of good stuff like the drug-oriented "Selfmade Trip" and "A New Way". "New Born Child" starts off in that psychedelic manner with terrifying screams in the most inappropriate time (when the song slows down, unlike PINK FLOYD's "Careful With That Axe, Eugene", which the song reaches its most intense climax). It's a pretty nice piece of underground prog/psych you come to expect from this era.

Track Listings :

1. New born Child (7:45)
2. Selfmade Trip (10:29)
3. A New Way (7:04)
4. Indra Elegy (11:43)
5. Irminsul (2:10)
6. Yggdrasil (3:40)
7. Stories (4:39)
8. Cheese (4:38)

Total Time: 52:08

Line-up/Musicians :
- Horst Waber / drums
- Harald Zuschrader / organ, flute, guitar, sax
- Hubert Bognermayr / keyboards
- Gerhard Englisch / bass
- Heinz Gerstmair / guitar, organ, vocals
- Will Orthofer / vocals, sax

Link :
( Thanks to )

Highly recommended for all kraut-psych lovers !!!

PATERNOSTER "Untitled" ( Austrian Krautrock - 1972 )

PATERNOSTER was one of the few prog rock bands to emerge out of Austria, aside from EELA CRAIG and KYRIE ELEISON. They released their one and only album in 1972 on the CBS label. In 1991, a small German label called Ohrwaschl had reissued this on CD, but because the master tapes were lost, it was a direct from LP to CD recording. Don't let that scare you off, because the sound quality is great, and there only the occasional cracking.
PATERNOSTER was lead by organist/vocalist Franz Wippel. His singing is really peculiar, think of a depressed version of PROCOL HARUM's Gary Brooker with a Germanic accent and you get the picture how he sounds like. The rest of the band consisted of Gerhart Walenta on drums, Gerhard Walter on guitar and vocals, and Heimo Wisser on bass.
Musically they're an early '70s prog band with psychedelic leanings. Hammond organ is the only keyboard used, and the guitarist uses that late '60s psychedelic fuzz lead.

Franz Wippel was the group's sole composer and what a monster he created–seven tracks of organ-drenched prog with heavy psychedelic leanings. There's a definite krautrock feel in that it's both acidic and cosmic with a loads of atmosphere.

Track Listings :

1. Paternoster (3:56)
2. Realization (3:34)
3. Stop these lines (6:57)
4. Blind children (6:16)
5. Old Danube (4:16)
6. The Pope is wrong (6:02)
7. Mammoth Opus O (8:55)

Total Time: 39:56

Line-up/Musicians :
- Gerhart Walenta / drums
- Gerhard Walter / guitar, vocals
- Franz Wippel / organ, vocals
- Heimo Wisser / bass

Link :
(thanks to )

Another great and dark record !!!

Monday 11 August 2008

NORTHWIND "Same" aka "The Woods of Zandor" ( US Progressive - 1974 )

The original Northwind band was founded in 1968 by Roland Ernest and Jan Stepka. They were inspired originally by bands such as the Doors, Cream, the Moody Blues, the Beatles, and Procol Harum. Northwind was later heavily influenced by ELP, Yes, King Crimson, and Genesis.
The band went through four membership changes. The first incarnation had drummer Steve White. In 1970 they created and performed an original rock opera entitled “Looking Back.” In 1972 they recorded an untitled demo album featuring the song “Last Day at Lokun.” Tom Iacaboni replaced Steve White on drums when Steve left the band to pursue the guitar.

In 1974 Tom, Jan and Roland recorded the world famous (in collectors' circles) Northwind demo album in Roland's family's basement. This album is often erroneously referred to as “Woods of Zandor”.

Tom was at heart a jazz drummer, and when he left Tim Cahill joined on drums and percussion. For a short period, Bob Pascoe contributed his rock guitar to Northwind's sound. Northwind then performed mostly in clubs and created a reputation in Canada. This period largely had the band playing covers of other rock bands' material. In 1977 returning to original music, Roland took over guitars and the band added the talents of Rob Foster on wind instruments. In 1978 the band recorded their magnum opus “Distant Shores” in Roland's family's basement in Sterling Heights, Michigan. One song, “Just Yesterday,” was released as part of a local radio station's compilation of Detroit area bands' music entitled “Home Grown”. Tim Cahill's religious calling conflicted with his perception of the rock and roll lifestyle leading him to leave secular musical performing. Howard Wells joined the band on drums and percussion for rehearsals while Roland and the band's manager Ron Geddish vainly persued a record contract. Northwind broke up in 1978 largely because of this failure.

This album features long tracks with swirling keys, lenghty choppy guitar solos, floating harmonies, good guitar textures throughout with a good mix of heavy electric leads and delicate acoustic stretches.

Track listing :
1. Live - 3:38
2. Nightmares - 3:43
3. Zandor - 6:54
4. Some Other Way - 3:25
5. Aftermath - 8:50
Total time : 26:30

Line-up :
Roland Ernest - Guitar, Vocals
Jan Stepka - Keyboards, Vocals
Ton Iacaboni - Drums, Percussion, Vocals

Link :

Extremely rare, don't miss it (even if the quality is not always as I expected) !!!

Another gem needed to be unearthed !!!