Showing posts with label Freeman Sound. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Freeman Sound. Show all posts

Friday, January 23, 2015

The Day After The Sabbath 114: World In Sound [label interview]


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Those of you that spend a lot a lot of time looking for obscurities in the realm of '60s/'70s rock will no doubt be familiar with some of the independent record labels that are re-issuing lost gems. They are of course one of the essential driving forces that keep the interest going in this scene, frequently revealing new artists' work that was previously lost in the vaults of old studios or forgotten in shoe boxes in dusty attics. Myself and everyone else who shares this stuff is indebted to them for making this music known and accessible. I list all the labels that I have used music from so far in the 'recommended' section on the right, so please check that out at some point.

Chris Peters
I was recently contacted by someone who works for one of these labels. He is Chris Peters (link), singer and guitarist for the contemporary heavy psych band 'Samsara Blues Experiment'. There is another great interview with him here at ItsPsychedelicBaby (link). One of his other pass-times is assisting in the running of the independent label that his band is signed to, called 'World In Sound', aka 'WIS' (website). Originally started in 1998 by founder Wolf, the label began as a '60s-'70s rarity re-issue label, and has since branched out into signing current bands. In a recent vision-shift it has just moved on to its first '80s re-issue, as you will read below. I have used music from WIS re-issued acts more than a few times in this blog before, Fear Itself (Vol97), Ellison (Vol12), Darius (Vol108) and Goldenrod (Vol31) to name a few. Therefore I was more than happy to join-in with Chris's suggestion of doing a spotlight on the label, which is what volume 114 of TDATS has become.

What you get here is fifteen tracks which I have chosen as some of my personal faves from the WIS 'relics from the past' catalogue. This includes a few names that have appeared before in TDATS, and I am glad to say the rest have not, making for a very fresh set for you guys out there and some new discoveries to me. Label-owner Wolf has given us his opinions on the tracks. He also took part in an interview, which will be great for those of you interested in the world of re-issue labels and what it's like to run one. The majority of tracks are from albums, with two 45s, from Purple Canteen and Protein Bros. These are taken from the WIS obscure 45s comp, "Psychedelic Minds vol. 1" (link).

TRACKS with Wolf's comments (there's more detailed artist info at end of article)
01. Protein Bros - Drainpipe (1971)
        from album 'Psychedelic Minds Vol.1'
        Pure Euphoria! Also heavy as hell and should make everybody want to dance and freak
        out!
02. Gold - No Parking (1970)
        from album 'San Francisco Origins'
        For that period heavy as hell and in my opinion at least as powerful as "Ace of Spades"
03. Dragonwyck - The Vision (1970)
        from album 'Dragonwyck'
        Kind of a heavy punk version of the Doors' "Break on Through"
04. Purple Canteen - Brains In My Feet (1968)
        from album 'Psychedelic Minds Vol.1'
        Fuzziest Fuzz ever
05. Fred - By The Way (1971)
        from album 'Fred'
        Incredible music! An album which should be in each and every good '70s collection
06. Strawberry Window - Mercury (1967)
        from album 'Strawberry Window'
        The raw, intense roots of Westcoast heavy blues rock
07. Fear Itself - For Suki (1969)
        from album 'Fear Itself'
        Perfect culmination of teenage blues and distorted heaviness. Dramatic
08. Headstone - Ragin' River (1974)
        from album 'Still Looking'
        It was their later stuff, it´s a bonus track, a good 70s rocker, a ZZ-Top, AC/DC-like
        stomper, but the more excessive material is the album and the 45s.
09. Mystic Siva - Eyes Have Seen Me (1970)
        from album 'Mystic Siva'
        Mystic Siva were awesome performers. Checkout their live album “Under the 
        Influence”, incredible to me that they were just 16 on average when doing this. Most of
        their songs are really DIE HARD, which was also the major aspect in '80s thrash metal.
10. Jeff Simmons - I'm In The Music Business (1970)
        from album 'Lucille Has Messed My Mind Up'
        "I'm in the Music Business," in which the main character resorts to acting in a porn flick
        to pay his rent when his career as a musician goes nowhere. Frank Zappa produced the
        album and Simmons would later join The Mothers.
11. Freeman Sounds & Friends - If I Could Only (1970)
        from album 'Heavy Trip'
        A very epic heavy rock tune, heavy blues, haunting and unforgettable with stunning
        melodies and forceful guitar work. If it would have been released in 1971 it could have
        been a hit. It also has a bit of Krautrock flair
12. Psiglo - Cambiarás al Hombre (1974)
        from album 'Psiglo II'
        Theatrical South American prog psych at its best! Great rhythm changes and hammond
        riffs, mind-blowing guitar solo
13. Stoned Circus - Trust (1970)
        from album 'Revisited'
        Great! I invited them to Germany in 2005 and they came with original line up. It was
        pure and authentic!
14. Sproton Layer - The Blessing Of The Dawn Source (1970)
        from album 'With Magnetic Fields Disrupted'
        More than incredible! Roger Miller from Mission of Burma on Bass - super heavy -
        combines the hypnotic Syd Barrett feeling with late 70s punk. This is a work of 3
        brothers (all of them performed in "Destroy all Monsters") and the trumpet intro sounds
        like in a Sergio Leone western movie! I saw them live in 2014 and am still mind-blown,
        all people were smiling
15. Cosmic Dealer - Child Of Tomorrow (1973)
        from album 'Child Of Tomorrow'
        The Netherlands had a few spectacular bands with a typical "Dutch vibe" in songwriting.
        Shocking Blue were the heroes, and their heavy songs are just WOW! "Child Of
        Tomorrow" is a perfect heavy/pop rock song with cool Westcoast-feeling and from 2:28
        min. marching into the unexpected! Awesome! In my opinion that part could have been
        more extended to a real freakout, but it´s a song and not a jam. Still, in one word:
        remarkable.
references
http://www.worldinsound.com/
http://www.dragonwyck.eu/
http://progressive.homestead.com/ Psychemusic.org
http://galacticramble.blogspot.co.uk/ Galactic Ramble
http://rogerclarkmiller.com/ Sproton Layer


Interview with label boss, Wolf

Q1. Hi Wolf, welcome to TDATS. Firstly, can you tell us a little about yourself. Is 'Wolf' a nickname? Where are you from and where do you live in Germany?
Wolf is the short version of Wolfgang. I grew up here, close to Heidelberg in the south western part of Germany. For university I moved up 300 km north to Cologne, then returned and started my label as a hobby in 1998. Besides sports, music was always a true love of mine. My parents' musical taste plus the time I grew up as a kid (early-mid 70s) had a huge impact on my NOW-taste. It was Elvis, Pat Boone, '60s orchestra stuff and the Ennio Morricone Western or Jerry Cotton soundtracks, Joe Meek, who all had an epic, monumentally haunting feeling but catchy arrangements.This is what I call "dark euphoria" and what I see as one part of the World In Sound-philosophy.

Then in the 1980s I was a teen and at first owned only one vinyl; a 50s/60s Rock&Roll comp featuring Bill Haley, Chuck Berry, Little Richard and Fats Domino - my next album was Judas Priest “Defenders of the Faith”… It was a great period for music and in retrospect the years 1983 - 1989 was the last serious revolutionary movement in rock history, when I had the ultimate pleasure of seeing Metallica with Cliff Burton in 1985, opening for Venom. Of course, most of the other acts that I saw live were a great experience. Almost every concert was a total blast and a happening with maximum tension - now days I often miss that magic. I feel mostly disappointed about today's LIVE heavy music scene. I ask myself sometimes, if the time to be truly euphoric is gone? Or is it that maybe the term 'euphoria' deserves a new definition?

Q2. Are you a musician yourself?
No I never played music but was always a passionate and conscious listener, hunting for intense and catchy music. I did professional sports for about half of my life (swimming).

Q3. Can you tell us some of the major events and influences in your life that led you to start "World in Sound"?
There was always the passion to discover great music and that is a lifetime quest and still growing. My major motivation was to dive deeper in the local US-underground scene while collecting 60s/70s original vinyl and 45 records at the end of the '90s. This was the period when lots of bootlegs flooded the market but also “popular” re-issue labels had been founded to create a renaissance with a look back to underground music history.

One day near the end of 1998, I decided spontaneously to release music on limited vinyl and to find the band members, with the hope to get more unreleased music and exciting biographies. And further, I had the intention of producing high quality releases, as an alternative for super expensive original albums, like Mystic Siva, Darius or Modulo 1000. I found several bands who just did rare 45 records, like Fred, and I was mind-blown (and still am) when I listened to their unreleased music for the first time.

Q4. Can you describe some of key moments in the development of the label since it started?
There were too many impressing moments to describe one as a key. It was a constant growth and it was always awesome, when after a difficult search for the original artists I had the right guy on the phone. Also meeting some of these guys and talking about their passion, what efforts they put in their music, was highly inspiring.

It was important for WIS to start with CD-releases in 2001, because by that it reached more international popularity. The next important step was to add contemporary groups on the label and most of the latest releases are really good albums, but especially live on stage most of my bands are really challenging.

Also, the jam-project Obskuria gave me an opportunity to produce albums and learn about studio work. I enjoyed the whole process of the production, from sharing ideas to recording, cutting, mixing and mastering it. It was a project with musicians from my label, Tom Brehm from Dragonwyck and the La Ira De Dios band, plus a keyboardist from my area. They jammed like hell and with the help of my sound-engineer we cut these jams to songs. It was a lot of fun and I still listen to it and I am mind-blown.

Q5. You cover a wide range of styles with WIS. TDATS is mainly about heavy stuff like hard rock and heavy prog/psych, but WIS equally features stuff like folk and experimental artists. Could you tell us what your favourite styles in old rock are, including some of your favourite artists from those times?
When people say heavy, I assume that they mean riff-orientated, doomy, less melodic and tight rock, like a hardcore-style kind of sound - Though I think true heaviness should also work on people´s minds and not just on their body, for me it´s more about intensity which is created by exciting layers, catchy melodies, fast(er) rhythms and a climax that every good song should have, plus unexpected movements which are floating into euphoric and hypnotic realms. I can not really tell you which styles I like. Before I already mentioned my "heroes" - the '80s thrash metal and punk movement was the strongest and most influential style, I have lived for - maybe also because of the chance to see all these great bands live on stage. Back then I took all my pocket money to the local record store ;-). I can for sure say that I'm not into most new styles, like Sludge, modern Doom or Nu-Metal, all that is too boring for me.

Q6. Personally, I think the short transitional period between the 60's and 70's was the best and most creatively interesting time in rock history. What are your opinions on why there was such a creative explosion during those times and what other periods interest you most up until the current day?
I totally agree with you, also 1955-1963 was spectacular when Rock & Roll and a serious youth movement opened up the gate - that heated people up for more freedom in music. Especially the fact that bands wrote their own songs, made the '60s/'70s movement this exciting and the naivety and passion of discovering something new drove it to the limit.

Compared to today the quality of dynamics in the productions had way more magical spirit due to the influences of classical/jazz orchestra music, which means the knowledge about music and how things work on the listener was at a higher level. Also that gave interesting crossover albums like Deep Purple the chance to combine classical movements with heavy rock and in the end it sounded like one big orchestra.

Q7. How do you choose the artists to reissue with WIS? Do you choose them all yourself, or do you have assistance or recommendations?
If I want to listen to an album over and over again, I want to release it. Of course I have friends who I "use" as test-listeners, also Chris Peters (from Samsara Blues Experiment and Electric Magic Records) consulted me for some releases, or forwarded to me bands like Postures and Sun And The Wolf. But my experience is, not to listen too much to other people, or think too long about things. It has to hit me from the first note or needs at least 50% of these "WOW"-songs. I think there are either way too many releases on the market, and I receive at least 2-3 demos a week, so I hope that every release is chosen well-enough to not end up in the 0.99ct special sale boxes (which is much less than the production cost).

Q8. How did you get together the obscure 45s that you used in your various artist comps like ''Psychedelic Minds Vol.1''.
They are all in my collection, good stuff ain't it? For a long time I've been thinking of a Vol. 2, so be prepared!

Q9. Do you have any interesting stories regarding how you found out about their lost work, or how you got in contact with any of the artists?
There were too many stories in that field of “detective-research”. Once I tried to locate Florencio Vargas from San Antonio TX. He's on the Psychedelic Minds sampler with the group Sangre Mexicana, a killer song! So, there was a search-website which displayed the ages of people and I called the oldest person with the surname "Vargas", out of 100 hits, who was a 91 year old woman, and asked if she could help me. She was so nice, we talked for more than 10 mins and joked and a few days later I got an E-Mail from Florencio. Most of the WIS releases have been realized after similar web-research for phone numbers and then calling the musicians to find out about an existence of tapes, deals and other things. I have also brought musicians together who lost track of each other, by releasing their music.

Q10. Could you tell us three artists reissued by WIS that are particular favourites of yours, and why?
A tough question, for me every album has at least one “must-have-listened-at-least-once-in-a-lifetime” song!

Fred is for sure one of the most musically-talented bands you'll find in my reissue catalogue. I love especially their self-titled debut, and feel sadness that they were not discovered in 1971. I met three of them in person.

Mystic Siva were awesome performers. Checkout their live album “Under the Influence”, incredible to me that they were just 16 on average when doing this. Most of their songs are really DIE HARD, which was also the major aspect in '80s thrash metal.

There are many, many more album highlights like Easy Chair, Cold Sun, The Id, Phantasia, Fear Itself, Dragonwyck, CK Strong, Headstone, The Head Shop, Gold ... They all developed their “own” remarkable sound and great songs.

Q11. What is the future for WIS? Do you have any other types of project in mind, like books for instance?
I guess the future will be good - several great albums are in the pipeline. With Samsara Blues Experiment this year we will have the first well-promoted US tour of a WIS-artist, and they will be the first WIS-artist at Hellfest in France. I hope that soon other WIS bands can follow.

In 2015 WIS will re-release Blind Illusion's "The Sane Asylum" album, a thrash metal band with psychedelic influences. It will also be the first '80s release in the WIS catalogue. With the new mastering I hope to bring out the 70s psych appeal better than you hear it on the original release. I love open and natural dynamics and sound. According to my knowledge it was Les Claypool's [of Primus] first ever album release. Just yesterday I received unreleased 1979 bonus tracks from guitarist Mark Bierdermann, who is the band leader and founder and... WOW! I hope the WIS fans will see that thrash metal also had psychedelic aspects... and also for you, as a reviewer for heavy progressive music, I think it´s a nugget, if you don´t know about it yet.

I´d also like to set up a festival with only WIS-bands this year.

A book is possible but only by spoken interview and someone else writing it. Could be very interesting though. Do you have any plans in writing a book, btw?

Rich: Possibly, if I can can come up with an original aspect that hasn't been done for a book before.

Q12. Could you tell us about some of your favourite current or new artists from around the world?
A tough question too, the last “current” band that knocked me out was Portishead. Compared to what I have seen live on stage and heard on album during the past 30 years I prefer looking back in time, than searching for current music I could like. I don´t want to sound ignorant and don´t doubt that awesome albums are around today, but I found none by coincidence yet ;-). Btw. I quit collecting about 10 years ago. But I was totally surprised by Black Sabbath's last tour.

Q13. What have you learnt from your experiences of running WIS? Do you have any useful advice for rock fanatics who are considering starting a label or similar project themselves?
I have learned that I would do the same again and I enjoyed the time when I researched a lot in historical music. I also enjoy working with young talented bands who look forward to their best years of making music. I motivate them to find ways to knock the fans out and recommend exciting inventive music for them to listen to. An artist's job is to entertain the fans and a label's job is to entertain collectors by picking the best artists and providing the best "product" in regard to our WIS-special LP-releases for example. If the choice of artists is great, your products will be sought-after as soon they are out of print!

Q14. Finally, do you have anything further to say to TDATS and WIS fans out there?

ROCK ON! WIS will never compromise in the choice of artists, and hopes to release more challenging albums. 

Thanks Wolf!

Artist profiles taken from World in Sound


Protein Bros - 'Drainpipe' & Purple Canteen - 'Brains In My Feet'
both on 'Psychedelic Minds Vol.1 (Heavy Underground 67-71)' LP (link)

These are two tracks taken from the WIS comp, "Psychedelic Minds Vol.1 (Heavy Underground 67-71)" (link).

Protein Bros. from Malibu set the Californian surf dream to music. Rick Henn and Dennis Dragon had produced the soundtrack for Hal Jespen's 'A Sea for Yourself' in 1973. It includes a different instrumental version of 'Drainpipe' and was released a bit later than this 45rpm. Both releases came out on Rural Records.

Producer Joe Lee remembers, Purple Canteen from Jonesboro, Arkansas recorded a few songs around 1967/68. As a friend to these musicians' parents, Lee lent his support to the band and recorded them in his own studio. Purple Canteen's 45rpm was released on Lee's label Alley Records who also released the more popular freakbeat band 'The Esquires'.


Gold -'San Francisco Origins' LP (link)

A CD / LP cobination. The CD contains 2 parts S.F. underground history with the first Gold line-up feat. lead singer Richard Coco. Their 45 record “NO PARKING” was already reissued on LP by Rockadelic and issued on the CD compilation “Nuggets from the Golden State”.

Part 1 (only on CD) are the Studio Sessions of Leo Kulka´s Golden State Recorders, 9 heavy guitar cuts (same as Rockadelic LP) with great congas and bizarre Rock´n Roll vocals and the previously unreissued 45-rpm flipside a 4:45 minute sensitive but totally unexpected version of Gershwin's "Summertime" produced by Country Joe McDonald (Country Joe and the Fish).

Part 2 of the CD is here the vinyl release, a live set at the Fillmore-West Audition, a qualification gig for Bill Grahams club circuit, which was successfully passed - gigs at Winterland, Fillmore-West followed. These 42 minutes reach the highest level of power and a unique kind of heavy acid rock sound (especially the 6 min. killer version of “NO PARKING”) - Ed Scott´s hypnotic rhythm guitar, a mind blowing bass and drums create an outstanding and surrounding flow, Joe Bajza´s soaring solo guitar played in a kind of aggressive Cipollina / Jeff Beck style is brilliantly intense and brings true Sixties S.F. Hell´s Angels party feeling to your home. Very detailed 12 page color booklet - 78 minutes of hot music reflect the “golden sprit” of the late60's early 70's in San Francisco....15 years later bands like Metallica, Slayer, Exodus…..continued these powerful Bay Area guitar excesses…


Dragonwyck - 'Dragonwyck' LP (link)

This release is the first of WIS's Dragonwyck trilogy. The group from Cleveland (OH) was a promising band in that area, opened shows for bands like Foghat, Golden Earring, Edgar Winter Group etc. The mood of the music is dark, mystic and strongly influenced by the spirit of the times and the hippie age……"anything goes"! - Shortly after highschool in 1970, the 5 guys recorded 7 tracks, released a test pressing on Pama Records in an edition of only 85 copies. It was reissued in the 1990's by Rockadelic Records as limited edition on LP and CD, since then this band is a milestone for all heavy psychedelic music collectors.

Jim Morrison and The Doors brought main inspiration to Dragonwyck´s music, with the small difference; the songs are heavier and more progressive; the sound is not just dominated by great vocals, there are lots of freaked out heavy guitar solos and swirling Hammond B3 organ, which brings the individual note to the music. The core of musicians started as Sunrise in 1968 and released one 45 record.


Fred - 'Fred' LP (link)

"Fred" was for sure one of the most talented 70´s groups without an album - enjoy their early works, they're released for the first time. In 1971, as the war in Vietnam continued, some college students in rural 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. The release includes liner notes and photos.


Strawberry Window - 'Strawberry Window' LP (link) 

Strawberry Window hailed from the San Francisco Bay Areas East Bay music scene in the mid 60’s and were truly one of the “early birds” and innovators who made their own distinct brand of Rock-N-Roll. They played in a heavy-psychedelic-garage style, sounding somewhat reminiscent of the Jefferson Airplane, (early) Mad River, Buffalo Springfield, Quicksilver Messenger Service and Frumious Bandersnatch. These previously unreleased recordings have survived for the last four decades in a box on a shelf in a band member's closet.

Meticulous care and detail has been taken to master these recordings with a fresh, open approach, while ensuring that the sound and integrity of the vintage songs remained intact. The music of this guitar based quartet ranges from catchy electric folk tunes and “West Coast” garage rock to raw energetic acid jams lasting over 10 minutes.


Fear Itself - 'Fear Itself' LP (link) 

The album was originally released in 1969 on Dot-Records but didn't receive too much attention - maybe it appeared as a "too" freaked out heavy version of Jefferson Airplane or Big Brother & the Holding Co. The group started back in Atlanta Georgia in 1967 as a quartet with two guitars, played true Psychedelic sounds, recorded with Tom Wilson at the Record Plant in NYC, and moved to Woodstock (NY). The 10 album tracks contain 2 arrangements of traditional tunes all others are originals reflecting true electric heavy blues with a strong Hendrix feel, duelling guitar work and an outstanding female voice/vocals/screams...lots of intense stereo effects.

The group performed at Woodstock Festival in 1968 (one year before...) and played the hottest venues of NYC such as Filmore East. Ellen McIlwaine, the founder of the group made an international solo career as blues-singer and slide guitarist sharing the bill with Jimi Hendrix (main influence), Laura Nyro, Howlin' Wolf, Weather Report, Taj Mahal, George Thorogood, Tom Waits, Chicago, Bruce Springsteen and played a series of concerts with Johnny Winter.


Headstone - 'Still Looking' LP (link) 

This reissue by Headstone, a hard rock quartet from Indiana was their only album release. Their sound is strong and melodic with guitar/organ leads and catchy vocals. Their natural float creates a hypnotic atmosphere. At all their musical spirit is closer to the end 60s blend, than the recording year 1974 reflects, and sometimes they remind of the early Bloodrock stuff. Acid Archives (Patrick Lama): "The opening seven minute title track is a killer journey through local underground guitar psych, and there's plenty more good stuff aboard including some more lyrical moves. Underrated LP, solid all-way through, better than many $1000 LPs."

They were discovered by a local producer from Ohio, who owned the label "Starr-Records" and went there to record "Still Looking" (further they released in 1975 two non-lp 45 records; three "45-rpm songs are bonus tracks on the LP version; on CD you´ll find in total 6 bonustracks on the CD incl. 2 previously unreleased tunes). A hard rock album with several of flashes of the upcoming" new wave of British Heavy Metal (NWoBHM).


Mystic Siva - 'Mystic Siva' LP (link)

This album is remastered and remixed from the original first generation master tape, while the original album in 1970 was taken from a second generation tape; it had included overdub guitar solos on the three songs, to get more of the intended intensity into mix but in the end the original album sound did not reach the expectations of the group, it was too sterile instead of a more natural sound with the distortion and feedback.

This issue here is the real thing, you will hear it like it was intended in 1970. The four Sivas put 60s hippie garage psychedelic rock music on a darker and higher level of intensity, while the slower atmospheric tunes remind of the Doors, Jimi Hendrix or Iron Butterfly, the heavy cuts are unexpectedly crazy, mind blowing and hypnotic with flashes of the later upcoming rural 1980s thrash punk/metal vibe. After 43 years these original album recordings express at its best the challenging and inventive concept of Mystic Siva´s music. 11 original songs with a total running time of 46 minutes incl. a 16 page booklet with liners and other memorabilia.


Jeff Simmons - 'Lucille Has Messed My Mind Up' LP (link)

There are two albums from the Straight label years of Zappa´s multi-talented 'sideman', Jeff Simmons. In 1968 in Seattle Herb Cohen and Frank Zappa was in the audience after his sound check, and was listening to “Easy Chair”, Jeff´s group. Fascinated by his talent, he was signed for Straight records. Both albums, Lucille and Naked Angels were recorded in 1969.

'Lucille Has Messed My Mind Up' contains 10 heavy Blues-Rock and Folk tunes. Jeff is playing a hard-driven and groovy bass, piano, organ and accordion and singing in a style similar to that of Jack Bruce with Cream.

Simmons presented a brace of strong, harmonically sophisticated songs that have some of the explosive, multi-hued impact of the Jimi Hendrix Experience. The album was produced by Chris Huston (Led Zeppelin II, Undertakers, Young Rascals) and Frank Zappa under the synonym “La Marr Bruister”, who wrote the title track, played lead guitar on two tracks and co-wrote "Wonderful Wino”. Contains  memorabilia from Jeff´s vaults (posters, photos, liner notes).

Lucille was rated in Mojo Magazine as the 2nd best release on Straight Records. Strange Things Art Magazine mentions it as “the closest in execution to contemporary Mothers”, but Jeff´s individual talent made this album to a lost classic. To the right is a cutting from the UK's Melody Maker, December 5th 1970. It is one of the only articles written about Jeff, many thanks to Richard Morton Jack of Flashback magazine. (link)


Freeman Sound & Friends - 'Heavy Trip' LP (link)

I used a great cover of "16 Tons" from these guy back in Vol108. World In Sound presents another group that represents the late 60s, early 70s heavy psychedelic era scene in northeast Ohio, USA (the same region that Dragonwyck is from). Having won the Starshine Productions' "Battle of the Bands" in 1970, the five-member FREEMAN SOUND was established as the most popular of several bands (including Morly Grey), that had records released on the Starshine label. This special collection of original songs and sounds is an exciting bit of rock history that documents some of the charm, wit and depth of talent that made FREEMAN SOUND the special local hit they were.

This release includes 12 great, quality tracks with bio and photos. You'll get stoned on some mind-bending vocals backed by instrumentation that includes some very intense, heavy fuzz and wah pedal guitar sounds, solid drums and a screaming organ, with flashes of famous British groups. Prepare to get off on cuts like the 17 minute "Heavy Trip #70", the Hendrix-like "Tomorrow Is Plastic" and what we would venture to say is the heaviest version of Merle Travis' "16 Tons" ever recorded! This band broke up before they were able to make the most of their popularity. With this previously unreleased album, they may be taking up where they left off.


Psiglo - 'II' LP (link)

First vinyl reissue of this heavy progressive masterpiece from Uruguay. The second release of Psiglo is Uruguays rarest rock album, that was recorded in 1974 and first released in 1980 in an edition of only 200 copies. Contains long progressive tracks with heavy guitars pounding organ and creative arrangements. Second album of our SONDOR series with legendary records and recordings from Uruguay!




Stoned Circus - 'Revisited' LP (link)

This is an outstanding piece of US psychedelia - Stoned Circus - started in 1968 in Kansas City and became soon one of the hottest local acts. The powerful sound with male and female lead vocals has a strong “Jefferson Airplane” feeling, feat. a magic B3 organ and stunning heavy guitars. Not to be confused with the “Stone Circus” that recorded for the Mainstream label. This material was unreleased and found in the archives of Cavern Sound Studios where the “Wizzards from Kansas” recorded.

Rockadelic Records released these recordings as limited LP version in 1994 which is long sold out. Songs include “Gotta find Way”, “Try Love”, “New World”, “Trust”, and a fabulous coverversion of Zeppelin’s “Gonna Leave You”… Originally recorded in 1970 and for the first time on CD taken from the original masters including an 8p. with cool artwork, bio and photos. Highly recommended, reflects the honest summer, peace & love feeling!


Sproton Layer - 'With Magnetic Fields Disrupted' LP (link)

Sproton Layer was a psychedelic rock band based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which thrived from the fall of 1968 through the summer of 1970. They began under the name “Freak Trio” - three hyperactive brothers, Laurence, Ben, and Roger Miller who became, at the young ages of 14 - 16, addicted to Pink Floyd´s “Piper at the Gates of Dawn” when it came out in '67. Their unique and euphoric creation of music ranges from progressive-acid-punk to heavy psychedelia with catchy chord changes and Spaghetti Western Ennio Morricone flashes.

The energy of "With Magnetic Fields Disrupted", which was recorded in 1970, are strong, intense space music episodes of destruction and rebirth. Journalist Michael Azerrad described their recordings in his book OUR BAND COULD BE YOUR LIFE as "...a valuable document of an amazing band that sounded like Syd Barrett fronting Cream". The album was first released in 1991 by New Alliance Records, but it did not catch much recognition among the '60's collector freaks. Here is the next chance to discover the whole story of one of the “almost forgotten” US underground art-performance groups. Forty minutes long, the album was remastered from the original tapes.

Features extended band info and about four dozen artifacts including drawings, set lists, photographs, journal entries and more. After Sproton Layer, all Miller brothers contributed to numerous bands such as Destroy All Monsters, Mission Of Burma, and M3 …


Cosmic Dealer - 'Child Of Tomorrow' LP (link)

This is the second previously unreleased album by the Dutch psychedelic hard rock band Cosmic Dealer. Their first album “Crystallization” from 1971 is an outstanding and rare masterpiece for all psych collectors and for sure one of the best Euro-Underground rock albums of the 70s. In 1971 the band was shortly disband but found together in 1973 with a few line-up changes but kept the same musical intention: heavy psychedelic, progressive and guitar driven hard rock, with catchy song writing, a few US-Westcoast flashes but also extended instrumental jam excursions.

This album contains 6 songs which were recorded in 1973, plus 3 demos from 1971 and as bonus you´ll find 7"EP with 4 live cuts (25 mins) and was recorded in 1971, including the title track from their debut Crystallization. The album is is carefully re-mastered to catch the real spirit of the beautiful and intense music and contains a poster and a with lots of photos and liner notes.

Thanks Chris and Wolf, and thanks for reading! Rich

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Day After The Sabbath 108: Born Under a Bad Sign [Blues 3]


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The Day After The Sabbath 108: Born Under A Bad Sign by Rich Aftersabbath on Mixcloud
Welcome to #108, this has been in gestation for a while so I managed a pretty quick turn around once i'd perfected it, if you haven't had a chance to get the previous Volume 107 (Austrian special) from a few days ago yet, here it is.

This is the the third bluesy volume of TDATS, which now makes for these so far; Vol54, Vol79 and Vol108. Take your pick from 15 tracks of seriously heavy, or seriously psychedelic bluesrock, all guaranteed to have you strutting and mooching all the way down to your local speakeasy. We have UK, US, German and Australian acts joining the party, ranging from 1968 to 1975, with all but two acts being new to TDATS. They include the band that evolved into Leaf Hound, a guy who would later be in proto-punks The Tubes, and a guy who was in Noel Redding's band, but quit the music industry for 14 years to become a commander in the Royal Navy.

What can I say about the importance of bluesrock to everything TDATS that hasn't already been said? Mostly associated with heavy R&B acts that emerged in the UK around the mid-'60s, The Blues Breakers, The Yardbirds and Cream sure have a lot to answer for, and Hendrix was playing his part too. This boom lead to tracks such as Cream's "Sunshine of Your Love" and Hendrix's "Fire" or "Purple Haze", which have some of the most all-time influential riffs upon what became heavy metal. Around the same time there was Blue Cheer in San Francisco, cranking out super-heavy stoned interpretations of the blues. Of course even Black Sabbath themselves started out as "The Polka Tulk Blues Band".

TRACKS
01. Juicy Lucy - Willie The Pimp (1970)
        from album 'Lie Back And Enjoy It'
02. The Sacred Mushroom - You Won't Be Sorry (1969)
        from album 'The Sacred Mushroom'
03. Darius - Ancient Paths (1968)
        from album 'Darius'
04. Chicken Bones - Feeling (1975)
        from album 'Hardrock In Concert'
05. Growl - I Wonder (1974)
        from album 'Growl'
06. Tangerine - A.J.F. (1971)
        from album 'The Peeling Of Tangerine'
07. Apple Pie Motherhood Band - Born Under a Bad Sign (1968)
        from album 'The Apple Pie Motherhood Band'
08. Majic Ship - Free (1970)
        from album 'Majic Ship'
09. Chain - Black & Blue (1971)
        from album 'The History of Chain'
10. Dave Carlsen - Big Jake (1973)
        from album 'Pale Horse'
11. Freeman Sound & Friends - 16 Tons (1970)
        from album 'Heavy Trip'
12. Magic Sand - You Better Be Ready (1970)
        from album 'Magic Sand'
13. Warren S. Richardson Jr. - Stella (1969)
        from album 'Warren S. Richardson Jr.'
14. White Mule - Hundred Franc Blues (1970)
        single
15. Black Cat Bones - Save My Love (1970)
        from album 'Barbed Wire Sandwich'

Juicy Lucy -
Juicy Lucy - "Lie Back And Enjoy It" LP pull-out
Juicy Lucy was a short-lived commercial blues band that counted Mick Moody in its ranks, later of Whitesnake and other acts. The band was started by The Misunderstood (See Vol62) members Ray Owen, Glenn Ross Campbell (Steel guitar) and Chris Mercer (saxophone). Paul Williams puts on a great vocal performance here, he was the second singer for the band after Ray Owen left for a solo career. Their cover of 'Willie The Pimp' is fantastic, it really shows the combined talents of the band, along with the great slide guitar of Glenn Ross Campbell. In my opinion they never made a classic album, but it's clear they had the abilities. The original is a Frank Zappa song, from the 'Hot Rats' album, and Stackwaddy also did a cool version.

The Sacred Mushroom LP
The Sacred Mushroom LP
Sacred Mushroom are up next with a concise little psych blues rocker, here is AllMusic.com's review: "Led by future Pure Prairie League member Larry Goshorn (guitar/vocals) and featuring brother Danny Goshorn (vocals) -- Sacred Mushroom were a short-lived rock/blues quintet based in Cincinnati, OH. Their efforts coalesce on this, the band's self-titled debut (and only) long-player. The album contains a blend of proficient originals as well as a pair of well-chosen cover tunes, such as the blues standard "Mean Old World" and the Kinks' "I'm Not Like Everybody Else." While their name conjures images of late-'60s psychedelic or acid rock, Sacred Mushroom's roots were decidedly more bluesy than trippy. Likewise, their harder-edged performance style is well served by the tight and somewhat pop-driven arrangements, resembling artists such as the Allman Joys, Kak, or the pre-Blue Öyster Cult Stalk-Forrest Group. A few of the Larry Goshorn-penned tunes are certifiably lost classics. These include the up-tempo rocker "Catatonic Lover," which features some lyrical chord changes reminiscent of "3/5's of a Mile in 10 Seconds" by Jefferson Airplane, and the Chicago blues-style waltz "All Good Things Must End." The latter is highlighted by some inspired harp playing from Rusty Work. The opening track, "I Don't Like You," is a funky rocker spotlighting the Goshorn Brothers' tight harmonies as well as Larry's distinctive lead electric guitar licks. Another standout is their reworking of "I'm Not Like Everybody Else." The track retains a timeless pop sensibility that incorporates interweaving acoustic and electric guitar lines. "Lifeline," the most extended track on the disc, recalls the electric blues of seminal Fleetwood Mac or Stan Webb's Chicken Shack. Along the same lines is the blues boogie rendering of "Mean Old World," which might easily be mistaken for an obscure version by a mid-'60s lineup of John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. After decades of poorly manufactured European bootleg reproductions, Larry Goshorn has reissued Sacred Mushroom.

Darius LP (1968) front
Darius LP (1968) front
Darius comes in on track 3 with a really nice trad blues-sounding track with plenty of grunt in the guitar dept. Thanks to RDTEN1 at RYM and badcatrecords.com for his opinions on the next act: "So what can I tell you about this guy Darius? Well his given name was Robert Joe Ott and he was apparently originally from Cleveland, Ohio, but in the mid-1960s relocated to Los Angeles where he attracted the attention of the Hollywood-based Chartmaker label.  Released in late 1968 "Darius" was co-produced by Pat Glasser and Butch Parker.  Personally I don't hear the Jim Morrison comparisons that some reviewers allude to, but Darius had a voice that was quite commercial and was well suited to material like the should've-been-hits 'Dawn' and 'I'm the Man''.  Featuring ten original efforts, songs like 'Shades of Blue', 'Ancient Paths' and 'Hear What I Say'  offered up a great blend of dark pop and psych moves.

Darius LP (1968) rear
Darius LP (1968) rear
Interestingly, while there was nothing wrong with Darius 'I'm hurt' and 'love is unfair' lyrics, the key ingredient in making the album so good was the support he got from his un-credited backing band - fellow Chartmaster recording act Goldenrod (See Vol31).  Lead guitarist Ben Benay, drummer Toxey French and bassist Jerry Scheff may have been studio professionals who were best known for their work with Elvis Presley, but on this album they cut loose, decorating tracks like 'Mist-Veiled Garden' and 'Blow My Mind' with some amazing fuzz guitar, sitar, and other period accompaniment.  Killer !!!  (Always loved the egomaniacal back cover photo...  You can tell that Darius was sure he was about to become a major star!)"

Chicken Bones - Hardrock In Concert LP (1976)
Chicken Bones
"Hardrock In Concert" LP
(1976) front
The next belter is a mostly-instrumental, galloping jam from Germany's Chicken Bones. Taken from Silverado Rare Music: "The title of Chicken Bones' album Hardrock In Concert (1976) says it all! There are six "very hard rocking tracks" included therein, performed in the good old tradition of the early seventies heavy progressive scene. Most of the album is instrumental, and offers Rainer Geuecke plenty of opportunities to reveal his musical skills. The two longest tracks are the highlights: "Water" with the whisper of the sea and some beautiful acoustic guitar and "Factory Girl" which was in a more typical hard rock vein. This album has an excellent and well-balanced sound for a private release. The recordings were done in only one week live in the studio - or more probably a barn!

Chicken Bones
Chicken Bones
"Hardrock In Concert" LP
(1976) rear
These were an obscure heavy progressive act, who almost certainly had their roots in the late-1960's, and were definitely inspired by Jimi Hendrix and early British bands, like Back Sabbath, Tractor, et al., but were notably much more free and improvised. Despite the title of their album, Chicken Bones were not at all mundane hard rock, but were highly creative and often moved very close to May Blitz, early UFO or Cargo, but with lots of nice moves and flowery guitar work-outs. Basic, and gutsy admittedly, Chicken Bones were a lot better than the reputation that preceded them, and their album became quite a sought after obscurity. Chicken Bones existed in various forms for around a decade, afterwards ending up as the vastly inferior more metal oriented Revanche, then eventually disbanding in the 1980's.

Growl LP (1974) rear showing band
Growl LP (1974)
rear showing band
Growl are up next with a piece of great hard rock, full of blues attitude. They were formed in 1969, originally as 'Utopia' (not the Todd Rundgren group), under which name they made one album in that year (see Vol44). The s/t Growl LP was produced by Robert Duffey on Frank Zappa and Herb Cohen's DiscReet label in 1974, which seems to have been the year of the band's demise too. Both the Utopia and Growl albums are a mixed bag of rock 'n' roll, hard rock, and blues rock, but there are some worthy tracks. "I Wonder" is one of the best. Dennis Rodriguez (guitar, vocals), Harry Brender A. "Brandis" (guitar, backing vocals), Geno Lucero (bass) and Danny McBride (drums) were the guys previously in Utopia. Later Growl additions mentioned on RYM were Frank Krajnbrink (guitar, 1969-74), Richard Manuputi (vocals, 1974) and Mick Small (guitar, 1974). I have been unable to find much more info on the band.

Tangerine roll in with a Blue Cheerful vibe and guitar sound. From the Rockasteria page: ''The Peeling of Tangerine'' is the Gear-Fab CD reissue of their ultra-rare LP from 1971, recorded at the famous WRS Recording Studios in Pittsburgh, PA.

The Peeling of Tangerine
The Peeling of Tangerine front
Led by the multi-instrumentalist Ferraro brothers Al and Crash (they mainly played guitar), Tangerine started playing together in the late '60s. In many ways, The band recalls a slightly heavier Santana; the music is full of Latin chord progressions, salsafied and tribal drumming and percussion, and Al Ferraro's rousing guitar work, as well as some of the dynamics of early '70s psychedelia and soul. The band doesn't stake out their own musical ground and the songs are not altogether distinctive enough; more often than not, they sound like unstructured (but not formless) jams passing for songs. In the other hand, those jams are often scintillating, with a slight mysterious lurch -- had they been honed in and further fleshed out, they had the makings of blazing tunes. Underused lead vocalist Al Ferraro is a blue-eyed soul shouter along the lines of Steve Winwood, and the band can really cook.

The Peeling of Tangerine rear
The Peeling of Tangerine rear
Side 2 of the LP is where it's at, and is made up primarily of a heavy jams in the Iron Butterfly, Blue Cheer mold. The 13-minute final cut, "My Main Woman," perhaps summarizes both Tangerine's abilities and excesses best. The song contains gorgeous passages of snaking guitar lines, hyper drumming, and rumbling bass as well as joyous percussive parts, but those parts can go on far longer than taste would merit, thus losing the momentum and drive of the song for short spells before regaining its footing which was reminiscent of Iron Butterfly. Of this final track, Record Collector magazine says: "Al Ferraro’s fine, gutsy vocals crop up too infrequently, but his low-definition, fuzzball guitar soloing is everywhere, not least on My Main Woman, 13 long minutes of aimless grunt. The conga solo is the highlight - which surely speaks volumes."

The Apple Pie Motherhood Band LP (1968)
Apple Pie Motherhood Band
 LP (1968)
At the mid-point is The Apple Pie Motherhood Band with the namesake of this volume, and an excellent psychedelic cover of this classic blues song it is too. Review from Allmusic.com - "The Apple Pie Motherhood Band were a Boston collective with a formative heavy blues base and equally earthy  psychedelia. With Atlantic Records staff producer Felix Pappalardi behind the console, the results were a reflection of the ever-changing pop/rock soundscape. Although the band's lineup kept changing, the ensemble credited here includes Dick Barnaby (bass), Jack Bruno (drums), Joe Castagno (guitar), Ted Demos (guitar), and Jeff Labes (organ/piano). Marilyn Lundquist (vocal) was temporarily filling the vocalist's void, her dulcet tones grace several songs. The thoroughly-explored reading of Albert King's "Born Under a Bad Sign" is an obvious homage to British supergroup trio Cream.

The best of the band can be heard on the seven-plus minute slice of psych medley that links the group-penned instrumental "The Ultimate" to a blue-eyed soulful interpretation of Garry Bonner and Alan Gordon's "Contact." The number was a return to the Apple Pie Motherhood Band's prototype C.C. & the Chasers -- whose single "Put the Clock Back on the Wall" b/w "Two & Twenty" were both from the Bonner/Gordon songbook. The Apple Pie Motherhood Band would continue with a revolving door personnel for another year and release their swan song Apple Pie (1970) shortly before breaking up at the dawn of that decade.

Majic Ship LP (1970)
Majic Ship LP (1970)
'50s singer Johnny Mann discovered Majic Ship, and many of their earliest recordings veered toward a sort of garage-pop hybrid that was, at best, pleasant. One Tokens-produced side, "Green Plant," on the other hand, hinted that the hearts of the members of the band lay in garage-psych heavy rock. When it came time to record their self-titled debut album in 1969, the music was much more in that vein.

Gear Fab's "The Complete Recordings" CD collects all of the band's official recordings, including early singles and demos. Majic Ship prominently featured Gus Riozzi's organ and Mike Garrigan's distinctive hard rock holler. The other noted members are Tom Nikosey (guitar), Philip Polimeni (guitar), Rob Buckman (drums) and Ray Rifice (guitar). The sound was only a few steps removed from fellow New Yorkers Vanilla Fudge, and like that band, Majic Ship also made use of popular songs by other artists. Two of the most interesting songs on the collection are covers of the Bee Gees' "To Love Somebody" and a medley of Neil Young's "Down by the River" and Stephen Stills' "For What It's Worth." The real starting point on the CD is "It's Over." It is here that the band began to display the heavy, nearly over-the-top rock sound.

Majic Ship LP (1970) insert
Majic Ship LP (1970) insert
Psychedelic Baby Review - "Majic Ship's existence came to a dreary end in 1971 when their equipment was claimed by a fire. 1999 saw the Mike Garrigan and Tommy Nikosey reunite, resulting in an album titled "Songwaves Project" that also included Cher, ex- Rolling Stones guitarist Mick Taylor, Dave Amato from REO Speedwagon, and drummer Ron Wikso, who has played with everyone from Foreigner to David Lee Roth to Cher to Randy Meisner to Denny Laine. Although the disc is poppier than "Majic Ship," it's still strongly recommended and adds a nice touch to the band's legacy."

Chain - Towards The Blues LP 1971
Chain
Towards The Blues LP (1971)
Classic Aussie band Chain appear in TDATS for the first time, with a slow-burning track suitable for a 'chain' gang. This is a live rendition but I'm not sure from when or where exactly, it is found on 'The History of Chain' album (1974). They formed in Melbourne as The Chain in late 1968 with a lineup including guitarist, vocalist Phil Manning; they are sometimes known as Matt Taylor's Chain after lead singer-songwriter and harmonica player, Matt Taylor. The band was named by Australian blues Singer, Wendy Saddington, after the song "Chain of Fools" by Aretha Franklin.

Their January 1971 single "Black & Blue", which became their only top twenty hit, was recorded by a Chain line-up of Manning, Taylor, drummer Barry Harvey and bass guitarist Barry Sullivan. The related album, Toward the Blues, followed in September and peaked in the top ten albums chart. They are Australia's defining bluesrock band, and you can read plenty more about them here at Milesago.


Dave Carlsen - Pale Horse LP
Dave Carlsen - Pale Horse LP
Dave Carlsen's real name is Dave Clarke. He made his first solo record "Pale Horse" under the Carlsen pseudonym (apparently to avoid confusion with The Dave Clark Five's leader) in 1973, with assistance from Keith Moon and Noel Redding. After this he was a formative member of The Noel Redding Band (two LPs), and also briefly the "Jimmy McCulloch & White Line" band (one LP). After various other musical collaborations, none of which yielded much, Dave Clarke joined the Royal Navy in 1979. He saw active service in the Falklands War and elsewhere and retired as a Commander in 1992. He has been lead singer and lead guitarist with The Kast Off Kinks since 1994. (wikipedia)

Freeman Sound
Freeman Sound LP
At track 11 is a really heavy cover of a bluesy country classic, Merle Travis's Sixteen Tons. It was in Motherheast, Ohio USA, in 1969, midway between the towns of Warren and Cortland, that five determined young musicians, Ray Escott - Lead Vocals, LJ Fortier - Drums, John Harrow - Lead Guitar, Vocals, "Buster" McCarthy - Bass, Vocals, and Kurt Sunderman - Rhythm Guitar, Vocals, started getting together in the damp basement of LJ's parents home on Sunday mornings in an effort to try to carry on with their dreams of being in a successful Rock band. Having won the Starshine Productions' "Battle of the Bands" in 1970, the five-member Freeman Sound was established as the most popular of several bands (including Morly Grey), that had records released on the Starshine label.

Freeman Sound never made an official LP, but the World In Sound archival release "Freeman Sound And Friends - Heavy Trip" includes 12 tracks with bio and photos. You'll get stoned on some mind-bending vocals backed by instrumentation that includes some very intense, heavy fuzz and wah pedal guitar sounds, solid drums and a screaming organ, with flashes of famous British groups. Prepare to get off on cuts like the heaviest version of Merle Travis' "16 Tons" ever recorded!

Magic Sand LP (1970)
Magic Sand LP (1970)
Thanks to tymeshifter for his research on The Magic Sand at RYM. "One of the enduring mysteries of psych record collecting has been the nature of the relationship between The Hooterville Trolley and this band. The Trolley's single "No Silver Bird" (See Vol50) has long been an icon of the genre, but that single represented the sum total recorded output of that band, at least under that name. When it was discovered that the exact same track turned up on this album, retitled as "Get Ready to Fly", rumors began to fly instead. The most common and widely believed was that the Trolley, or at least one member, became The Magic Sand. After recording this album, they wanted to give their earlier masterpiece another outing, so they included it here, despite its being completely out of place in this setting. But that scenario did nothing to explain why the song writing credits went to Ernie Phillips on the single, and someone named A.Klein on this album, the latter name never having been associated with The Hooterville Trolley. Well, I am proud to announce that, having just returned from an investigative sojourn, I am finally able to put the subject to rest. The bass guitarist from the Trolley, one Don Kinney, passed away several years ago. But I was able to track down his sister, who put me in contact with his first wife, who was married to him during those critical years.

The Hooterville Trolley -
The Hooterville Trolley
"No Silver Bird" single
She told me this story: "No Silver Bird" was originally written by Ernie Phillips. The band was dissatisfied with his version, and sort of punched it up a little bit on their own. The song was recorded in Norman Petty's famed studios in Clovis, NM, at a time shortly after he had just acquired a new mellotron. He was eager to use this new piece of equipment and the band were happy to oblige, literally drenching their song with psychedelic keyboards. They cut two versions of the song that day. The studio time had been paid for by their so-called manager, one Tommy Benvinedez, who insisted on rights to the music they recorded that day, for which he would pay royalties should anything ever come of it. It was Tommy B. who was behind the Magic Sand project. There was no real band by this name. It was entirely a studio project put together by Benvinedez incorporating all sorts of stuff, the exact sources of which are unknown. Some may have been recorded specifically for this album. Other tracks, such as The Trolley's, he just had laying around and decided to throw on here (incidentally, the version that appears on the album was the second take recorded at Petty's studios that day, and not the one on the single). Consequently, the styles of music are all over the place, from country to rock, and everything in between, and  don't even sound to be recorded during the same time frame. Overall, this one is a bit of a disappointment, despite the inclusion of such a notable track. But don't be afraid to check it out for some hidden gems you might discover on your own."

Warren S. Richardson Jr. LP front
Warren S. Richardson Jr. LP
front
From the PHROCK blog (RIP): "A bunch of on-line references question whether Warren S. Richardson Jr. is in fact former Tubes guitarist Bill Spooner. Given that Spooner's website includes the album in its discography section I'd say the answer is yes. By the way, here's the link to his website: http://www.billspooner.com. As a word of warning, anyone expecting to hear something along the same lines as The Tubes patented weirdness is going to be majorly disappointed by this album. In 1967 Richardson-nee Spooner contributed lead guitar to Michael Condello's "Condello" LP. A couple of years later Condello apparently repaid the favour by producing 1969's cleverly-titled "Warren S. Richardson Jr.".

Warren S. Richardson Jr. LP rear
Warren S. Richardson Jr. LP
rear
Richardson was credited with penning all six tracks and material like 'Reputation'' and 'Shady Lady' offered up a pretty good set of fuzz-propelled hard rock. Nothing here is particularly original and you may well feel like you've heard some of this stuff elsewhere, but Spooner had a voice that was well suited to the genre and this was one of those rare albums that actually seemed to benefit from the addition of horns (courtesy of Owen Eugene Hale, Richard Lewis and Joseph Ray Trainer). In case anyone cared, perhaps because it strayed a little bit from the predominantly hard rock formula, excluding the needless and seemingly endless drum solo, the psych-tinged 'Wind and Rain' struck me as the standout effort on the album."


White Mule
White Mule
White Mule is another name for illicitly-made booze like moonshine, white lightning, mountain dew, hooch, and Tennessee white whiskey. Whether or not this was the intended meaning for the band at track 14 I don't know. Harlow, UK's White Mule were Geoff Carpenter on guitar and vocals, John "Culley" Culleton on bass, John "Gypie Mayo" Cawthra on guitar and vocals and John Glasgow on drums. Brian Wren replaced John Glasgow on drums. Bruce Trotter came on board as an extra vocalist and Yanni Flood-Page was added as a second guitar after that. They toured Europe a lot and released two singles, Looking Through Cats Eyes (credited to Flood-Page) and a Mungo Jerry cover "In The Summertime". There are three different versions of their singles listed at 45cat, all of which have 'Hundred Franc Blues' as the b-side. According to bandtoband.com, John Cawthra was later in Dr. Feelgood and a late version of Yardbirds.

Blues Before Sunrise
Blues Before Sunrise
White Mule evolved from Blues Before Sunrise, who "formed around 1967 and were, Jeff Carpenter, guitar, John 'Culley' Culleton, bass, Bruce Trotter, vocals, and John Glasgow on drums. In 1968 Jeff and John left to be replaced by Brian Wren on drums and Gypie Mayo on guitar and vocals. They quickly changed their name to White Mule. Jeff later played with Sheena Easton on her early hits and albums."

White Mule - In The Summertime / Hundred Franc Blues single
White Mule
In The Summertime /
Hundred Franc Blues
single
Alias were a jamming unit circa 1975-1977 consisting of White Mules' Brian Wren, drums, "Culley", bass, Bill Sharpe, keyboards and Gypie Mayo on guitar. Alias were often seen jamming in the Triad in Bishop's Stortford, or The Orange Footman. "We'd hit a groove and just go with it, usually a funky thing, and play the bollocks off it and quite often end up in a psychedelic miasma. Great fun" - Gypie Mayo. Guests often included Roger O-Dell, drums, Keith Winter on guitar. Brian Wren was later in another Harlow band, Red Express. Roger, Keith and Bill Sharpe went on to form Shakatak in the 80's and have a string of hits. Thanks to the Harlow Band Archive for most of this White Mule information, I really didn't think I was going to find anything on them.


Black Cat Bones band
Black Cat Bones band
Closing this set, Black Cat Bones (named after a Hoodoo charm associated with blues music) shouldn't need too much introduction here. A band that were familiar on the London pub circuit, they are well-known to have included Paul Kossoff and Simon Kirke before they left for Free. After many line-up changes and the album "Barbed Wire Sandwich" the final death knell came. The last remaining members Derek and Stuart Brooks were joined by vocalist Pete French and guitarist Mike Halls from the Brunning / Hall Sunflower Blues Band. After adding drummer Keith George Young, the outfit became the hard rock band Leaf Hound in 1970 (see vol1 and vol64). Again, Leaf Hound shouldn't need to much of an introduction here, the "Growers Of Mushroom" LP is one of the best heavy underground records ever.

Black Cat Bones -
Black Cat Bones - "Barbed Wire Sandwich" LP
Thanks for listenin'. Rich

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