Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Ash Ra Tempel - Ash Ra Tempel (1971)

The classic spacerock debut of germanys seminal krautrock band with Manuel Gottsching on guitar. Jut two long differently paced pieces. 'Amboss' being the more dynamic.

Songs / Tracks Listing
 1. Amboss (19:40)
2. Traummaschine (25:24)

Line-up / Musicians
- Manuel Göttsching / guitar, voice, electronics
- Hartmut Enke / bass
- Klaus Schulze / drums, electronics

Amboss 1/2 Ash Ra Tempel

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Sunday, 5 December 2010

Jean Paul Prat - Masal (1982)

Mighty Magma inspired album by French drummer Jean Paul Pratt.

This is excellent Zeuhl styled music with an intensity only equalled by Vanders supergoup. The themes explored are superb. Heavy bass, blasts of brass with wailing vocals and intricate drumwork juxtapose brilliantly against the more delicate moments from piano / rhodes / winds. Especially so on the lengthy title track. The others pieces being much more fluid and slightly brighter and airy, still quite excellent though, and not unlike some 'Troll' or ' Eider Stellaire'

An indispensable album for Magma and Eider Stellaire fans too. 'Masal'  is truly a masterpiece of the genre.

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Masal (42:20)
2. Messagers De Notre-Dame (15:56)
3. Maran Atha-Sélah (9:13)
4. Valse Funèbre (5:11)
5. Origines - Seconde Partie (3:33)

Line-up / Musicians Track 1 lineup:
- Jean-Paul Prat / drums, piano, vocals
- Hervé Gourru / bass
- Jean-Jacques Willig / piano, synthesizers
- Viviane Galo / piano, vocals
- Norbert Galo / guitar
- Alain Escure / guitar
- Carlo Grassi / guitar
- Eric Duval / percussions
- Gérard Geoffroy / flutes, quena, panpipes
- Richard Heritier / saxophones, flute
- Georges Rolland / saxophones
- Richard Negro / trumpet
- Gilles Morard / trombone
- Bernard Morard / French horn

Friday, 3 December 2010

Thierry Zaboitzeff - Iva Lirma (2007)

Another fine album of utterly captivating music from Zaboitzeff which is extremely inventive , challenging, bombastic, dreamy, cinematic........... i could go on!

 This is highly sampled music (also with great use of electric guitar and vocals) whch in the right hands, as here, can be manipulated into extraordinary flights of the imagination, musically speaking..

 Zaboitzeffs  creative genius seems to have no bounds and he was in my opinion the very heart of Art Zoyds sound. Since his departure his solo releases just seem to get better and better, which unfortunately cannot be said the same for the current Art Zoyd.
 That bands subsequent releases seem to be a mere shadow of there former glory since this mans absence.

The title of this album by the way translates as 'Cross The Bridge'

Iva Lirma: Cross The Bridge / Thierry Zaboitzeff solo concert

Deil Zom an de Lay: Cross The Bridge /extract/ Thierry Zaboitzeff solo concert

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Men Of Lake - Out Of Water

Top keyboard dominated progress rock from this underrated current italian band.

 All tracks are excellently composed played and come across as a mix of Pink Floyd , King Crimson and some Canterbury school too. They also remind me a lot of Frances 'Halloween'.

 Excellent even though because of the language barier the vocals are hard to understand!

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Vipers (In the bottom of the well)
2. The Day We Met
3. The Dark Little Figure
4. The Prodigal Father
5. Dedicated To Saul Frances Levine And John
6. Strange Sleep
7. The Perception Of The Wind
8. The Ballad Of The Lake

Line-up / Musicians

- Maurizio Poli / keyboard
- Marco Gadolti / bass guitar
- Claudio Oberti / drums
- Mauro Borgogno / lead guita

Most underrated Prog Rock bands MEN OF LAKE (1)

Monday, 29 November 2010

Julian Jay Savarin - Waiters On The Dance (1971)

A little known gem from Julian Jay Savarin aka Julians Treatment.

Recorded two years after the excellent ' A Time Before This' this is another fine album with excelent female vocals from one Jo Meek which recalls a little of say Annie Haslam.

A tad dated maybe but this is terrific progressive and slightly psychedelic rock with some harder edged guitar work and great hammond organ.

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Child Of The Night 1 & 2 (8:36)
2. Stranger (2:21)
3. The Death Of Alda (5:29)
4. Dance Of The Golden Flamingoes (8:55)
5. Cycles (4:23)
6. Soldiers Of Time (2:59)

Total Time : 31:23
Line-up / Musicians
- Lady Jo Meek / vocals
- Julian Jay Savarin / story, arrangements, keyboards
- John Dover / bass
- Nigel "Zed" Jenkins / guitar
- Roger Odell / drums

Julian Jay Savarin - 04 - Dance of the Golden Flamingoes

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Peter Frohmader - Eismeer (2003)

Unfortunately this latest album 
from Frohmader is a far cry from his more atmospheric  earlier works. The lengthy title track Eismeer is meandering cyclical piano and a multitude of sampled sounds with a spoken poem in parts, which all somehow just doesn't seem to work, and just doesnt seem to go anywhere. There are a few brief flashes though here and there which impress, so all is not lost..........but nearly!

To sum up not very recommended to fans of Frohmaders earlier works. Eismeer is to be honest not very memorable and just seems to lack the inventive spark and cohesiveness usually associated with this artist and is far too oversampled for my taste and I miss that bass!!!

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Eismeer
2. Funèbre
3 Orchestral Crossover
Line-up / Musicians
- Peter Frohmader / all instruments

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Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Kraan - Wintrup (1972)

Definitely one of these krautrockers best albums, and for me a favourite of there's with stronger, tighter and more impressive songs than there debut.

Wintrup is full of memorable riffs, great jams and  powerfull jazzy krautrock psychedelia.

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Silver Wings (4:11) 

2. Mind Quake (7:40) 
3. Backs (6:40) 
4. Gut und richtig (7:33) 
5. Wintrup (5:21) 
6. Jack Steam (5:52) 
...Bonus track on EMI release: 
7. Fat Mr. Rich (5:43) (demo 1971, previous title: Jack Steam) 

Total Time: 43:00

Line-up / Musicians
- Jan Fride / drums 

- Helmut Hattler / bass 
- Johannes Pappert / Alto saxophone 
- Peter Wolbrandt / guitar, vocals

Kraan - 01 - Silverwings

Kraan - 05 - Wintrup

Monday, 22 November 2010

Yochk'o Seffer - Ghigoul (1978)

Classic and indispensable album for all Magma / Zeuhl fans.

This is usually regarded as 'Seffers' best album and i wouldn't disagree there.

Ghilgoul sports great sax work and lots of inventive jazz experimental fusion from one time Zao /  Magma member Yochk'o Seffer.

There's  some fine ethereal and strange vocal chants on some of the tracks. Check out the title track 'Ghilgoul' which is fantasticaly out of this world with superb vocals , strings and sax. Like a cross between early Art Zoyd and Magma.

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Dag (6:32)
2. Sifra (13:17)
3. Dailn (2:51)
4. Larma (2:53)
5. Ghilgoul (16:54)

Line-up / Musicians
Yochk'o Seffer / saxophones, piano
Dominique Bertrand / bass
François Laizeau / drums (tracks 1-5)
Margand String Quartet
Michael Nick / violin (tracks 6-8)
Laurent Cokelaere / electric bass (tracks 6-8)

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Art Zoyd - Phase IV (1982)

For me one of Art Zoyds best and strongest albums which marked the end of there more chamber classical RIO sound with real instruments.

 A good deal miimalistic with lots of repetition this album is  expertly and hypnoticaly integrated with its canvas of rich instrumentation. 

 Highlights as ever are the Thierry Zaboitzeff pieces ( especially the opening track ) with his excellent bass guitar work.

Songs / Tracks Listing 
1. État D'Urgence (14:38)

2. Naufrage (6:41)
3. Dernière Danse (4:33)
4. Deux Préludes (2:05)
5. La Musique D'Erich Faes (Collective Improvisation) (0:14)
6. Et Avec Votre Esprit (5:14)
7. Ballade (4:03)
8. Chemins De Lumière (15:09)
9. Du Sang Sur La Neige (4:16)
10. Vue D'Un Manège (4:08)
11. La Nuit (13:00)
12. Les Larmes De Christina (3:44)

Line-up / Musicians
- Gérard Hourbette / violin, keyboards, saxophone, viola 

- Didier Pietton / percussion, saxophone, sax (Alto), sax (Tenor) 
- Jean Pierre Soarez / percussion, trumpet, cornet 
- Thierry Willems / piano, piano (electric), piano (Grand) 
- Thierry Zaboitzeff / bass, guitar, cello, guitar (bass), vocals, voices, tapes

Art Zoyd - Dernière Danse

Art Zoyd - Naufrage

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Friday, 5 November 2010

Arsenal - Created With There Own Hands (1982)

Led by very talented saxophonist 'Alexey Kozlov' Arsenal are one of the pioneers of jazz rock in the soviet union. Most of there albums are very varied  with elements of Mahavishnu Orchestra, Passport, Chicago and on occasion delve into the more experimental realms of King Crimson. 

'Arsenal' are a fantastic band who's recordings are unfortunately quite obscure and hard to get hold of......... 'Created' is one of there best with more of a Mahavishnu Orchestra type sound especially on the 'Dedicated to' track.

Songs / Tracks Listing
Side 1 
1. Тайна / Mystery (7:50) 
2. Посвящение Махавишну / Dedication to Mahavishnu (9:08) 
Side 2 
3. Свет на пути / Lignt on the Way (6:30) 
4. Сюита в фа миноре / Suite in F Minor (10.00)

Line-up / Musicians Tracks 1 - 3:
- A. Kozlov / polyphonic synthesizer
- V. Rozenberg / electric guitar, sitar
- V. Zinchuk / acoustic guitar
- V. Gorsky / piano, synthesizer, Fender-piano
- A. Kulikov / bass guitar
- V. Brusilovsky / drums (1 - 3)

Track 4:
- A. Kozlov / alto-saxophone
- S. Grigoriev / tenor-saxophone
- D. Mamokhin / trumpet
- V. Rozenberg / electric guitar
- G. Slavin / piano, synthesizer
- G. Agachev / polyphonic synthesizer
- V. Lezov / bass guitar
- V. Sigal / drums
- V. Demin / percussion

Monday, 1 November 2010

Zip Tang - Luminiferous Ether (2007)

Very talented band from the states who's music is more in the jazz/rock fusion mould, but also has more progressive qualities akin to Zappa and King Crimson and even touches of zeuhl here and there. There's top notch musicianship throughout with also some vocals.

The lengthy reworking of 'Tarkus' is particularly outstanding.

 A fine debut album and certainly a band to look out for!!

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Tower Of Tuna (5:39)
2. Missed The Beginning (5:16)
3. Nothing Here (6:11)
4. Doctor Plush (9:59)
5. Like We Did Before (5:03)
6. Beta (5:48)
7. Searching For Treasure (4:25)
8. With A Twist (3:47)
9. Tarkus (Emerson, Lake & Palmer) (18:11)

Line-up / Musicians
- Perry Merritt / guitar, vocals
- Rick Wolfe / bass, vocals
- Marcus Padgett / keyboards, saxophone, vocals
- Fred Faller / drums

ZIP TANG - Tarkus (Eruption) Guitar & Sax

Zip Tang - "Tower Of Tuna" at House Of Blues, Chicago

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Friday, 29 October 2010

Hidria Spaefolk - DRSF-01 (EP) 2001

Excellent 35 minute EP of earlier material from the finnish spacerockers. It's also available as a free download from there website! Cool!

Altough the band has obvious Ozric Tentacle similarities they actually sound less like them here than on there later releases.

Songs / Tracks Listing 1. Amos Ame (9:30) 
2. Kafar-I (7:23) 
3. Sindran Rastafan (9:20) 
4. Gnomen (4:03) 
5. Marastronaut (4:57)

Line-up / Musicians - Kimmo Dammert / bass 
- Mikko Happo / electric guitar, digeridoo, posthorn 
- Teemu Kilponen / drums, percussion 
- Janne Lounatvuori / rhodes, synthesizers 
- Sami Wirkkala / acoustic, electric and midi guitar, jawharp, percussion 

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Sunday, 24 October 2010

Carpathia Project ( 1999 )

Top notch jazz/fusion with eastern Euro Hungarian flavors.

Two very inspired guitarists (Angyan and Daczi )  and violin/ flute make for a smoking and dazzling mixture, which is sure to please fans of Mahavishnu Orchestra or J L Ponty for instance, and is just as technicaly proficient as these too!

Songs / Tracks Listing 1. Caravan (4:35)
2. Carpathia (5:35)
3. War (4:40)
4. Friends (3:51)
5. Dance (4:01)
6. Smile (3:50)
7. Meridian (4:36)
8. Fusion (4:17)
9. Something For You (2:09)

Line-up / Musicians - Tamas Angyan / violin, guitar
- Zsolt Daczi / guitar
- Tamas Zsoldos / bass
- Bertalan Hirlemann / drums
- Gabor Kovacs / keyboards
- Denes Makrovics / flute

Carpathia Project - Caravan

Carpathia Project - Carpathia (Carpathia Project).wmv

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Thursday, 30 September 2010

Manuel Gottsching - E2 - E4

 Very interesting and pioneering work by Manuel Gottsching which is very minimalistic in structure with repetetive guitar melodies and electronics weaving a tapestry of slowly ever evolving hypnotic sounds. This is just one very long suite over an hour long.

Excellent !

Line-up / Musicians
- Manuel Göttsching / guitar, electronics

 Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Ruhige Nervosität (13:00)
2. Gemäßigter Aufbruch (10:00)
3. ... und Mittelspiel (7:00)
4. Ansatz (6:00)
5. Damen-Eleganza (5:00)
6. Ehrenvoller Kampf (3:00)
7. Hoheit weicht (nicht ohne Schwung...) (9:00)
8. ... und Souveränität (3:00)
9. Remis (3:00)

Total Time: 59:34

Manuel Göttsching - E2-E4 Part 1 of 6

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Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Focus - Focus 9 / New Skin (2010)

This album plus the previous Focus 8 are definitely a return to form of the classic earlier period Focus, albeit without guitarist Jan Akkerman in the ranks. The guitarist on this album though certainly comes close to his sound and technical skills.

 With lots of instrumentals that certainly sound familiar and one track with real vocals this is on the whole a progressive rock fans delight with lots of flute and guitar with excellent bass and drums. This is also the first time original drummer P van Der Linden and Thijs van Leer have played together on record for over thirty years. One can only look forward to more releases like this.

Songs / Tracks List
1. Black Beauty (4:13)
2. Focus 7 (5:22)
3. Hurkey Turky 2 (4:03)
4. Sylvia's Stepson - Ubutuba (4:48)
5. Niels' Skin (6:03)
6. Just Like Eddy (5:08)
7. Aya-Yuppie-Hippie-Yee (5:20)
8. Focus 9 (7:57)
9. Curtain Call (4:32)
10. Ode To Venus (4:26)
11. European Rap [sody] (10:22)
12. Pim (3:00)
13. It Takes 2 2 Tango (8:01)

Total Time: 68:16

Line-up / Musicians
- Thijs van Leer / Hammond, keyboards, flute, vocals
- Pierre van Der Linden / drums
- Bobby Jacobs / bass
- Niels van der Steenhoven / guitars

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Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Present- Barbaro (Ma Non Tropo) (2009)

Progressive music of the 21st or 22nd century. This album sees Presents music going full cycle back to there 'Triskaidekaphobie' days , which merges the best of that album to say 'Universe Zero's ' Heatwave.

The addition of sax and cello really adds another dimension and Trigaux's guitar is very tight.

This is dense and dark RIO/ Zeuhl/ Avant Rock fusion at it's best with never a dull moment and definitely there best album since there debut. The complexities here are amazing. A masterpiece!!!

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Vertiges (16:25)
2. A Last Drop (11:25)
3. Jack The Ripper (16:22)

Line-up / Musicians -

 Roger Trigaux- guitars,keyboards
-Reginald Trigaux- guitar
-Pierre Chevalier- piano,keyboards
- Dave Kerman- drums,percussion
-Kieth Macksoud- bass
-Matthieu Safatly- cello
-Pierre Desassis- saxaphone
-Udi Koorman- sound
-Laurent Van Gorp- tube

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Monday, 23 August 2010

Jade Warrior - Kites ( 1976 )

The asian/ oriental elements are more present on 'Kites' and on the whole is more like there 'previous 'Floating World' album with it's subtle and sometimes more intense instrumental ambient fusion . 

The 'King Crimson' influence is very apparent.

The second side of 'Kites' is one long suite and is one of this recordings highlights.

Another excellent album!

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Songs of the forest (3:30) 

2. Wind song (3:25) 
3. The Emperor kite (2:21) 
4. Wind borne (7:32) 
5. Kite song (2:20) 
6. Land of the warrior (3:29) 
7. Quietly by the river bank (4:35) 
8. Arrival of the Emporer: "What does the venerable sir do?" (2:27) 
9. Teh Ch'eng: "Do you understand this?" (1:08) 
10. Arrival of Chia Shan: discourse and liberation (0:53) 
11. Towards the mountains (2:04) 
12. The last question (2:37) 

Line-up / Musicians
- Tony Duhig / guitars, percussion 

- Jon Field / percussion, flutes 
- Roger Bryson / piano (3-7) 
- Fred Frith / violins (9)
- Pete Gibson / brass (1-4) 
- Coldridge Goode / bass (4)
- Debbie Hall / violin (2-3) 
- Graham Morgan / drums (3-7)
- Joe O'Donnell / violins (10) 
- Clodagh Simmons / girl's choir (1-2) 
- Jeff Westley / electric piano (4) 
- Willie / snare & bass drums (1) 

The String Quartet (3-7)

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Saturday, 21 August 2010

Electric Orange - Krautrock From Hell ( 2010 )

The latest release from these  german krautrockers, and a really great one too deserving of a track by track synopsis.

'Bandwurm' has rock solid bass and drums with swirling organ and effects diving in and out of the mix. A fantastic psychedelic track whch is really out there.

'Sundoa'  starts off kind of space boogeish with some great flute , reminds me a little of some 'Brainticket' with its psychedelic eastern flavor. Incidentally this has a remarkably similar riff in the middle to Bo Hanssons ' The sun ' from his 'Magician Hat' album. Superb track here ! .

'Chorg' is another spellbinding psychedelic rock track which incidentally is totally diferent to say ' Ozric Tentacles' ..... nowhere near as flashy and far more inventive. Electric orange never go in for hi flying guitar solo's which makes there music in my opinion more standout. This track is a fine example. Probably my favourite track this one!

'Hers' starts off very spaced out with guitar feedback and electronics. With vocals on this track it reminds me of some 'Porcupine Tree'.

'Kunstkopf' starts in a similar vein with swirly organ, rolling drums and guitar. Definitely some 'Can' influence here and a touch 'Pink Floyd'.

'Neuronomican' is the longest piece on the album, clocking in at over twenty five minutes. This again has some 'Porcupine Tree' even ' Anglagard'  type sound with it's intense progressive rock structures juxtaposed against more subtle psychedelic moments. Some bizzare vocals in here too! This is a remarkably hypnotic piece which builds in power and strangeness.

'Wumloch' is the most improvisationally  psychedelcly spaced track which surprisingly sounds for the most part like some early 'Tangerine Dream' Aka 'Electronic Meditation'.

Classic album then on the whole and almost as good as ' Morbeus'.

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Bandwurm (5:44)
2. Sundos (5:00)
3. Chorg [Cpt. Gyrok's] (10:51)
4. Hers (9:38)
5. Kunstkopf (6:29)
6. Neuronomicon (25:02)
7. Wurmloch (15:40)

Total Time: 78:24

Line-up / Musicians

- Dirk Bittner / guitars, voice, percussion, tapes
- Dirk Jan Müller / organ, synthesizer, piano, mellotron, tapes
- Tom Rückwald / bass
- Georg Monheim / drums, percussion
- Josef Ahns / guitars, flutes

Friday, 20 August 2010

Jade Warrior - Way of The Sun (1978)

There last album for the Island label and certainly ranking as one of the best.

The south american influence on this album is very strong and there are some splendid instrumental passages akin to some early Santana.

'Death Of Ra' is particularly outstanding.

A classic!!

Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Sun Ra
2. Sun child
3. Moontears
4. Heaven stone
5. Way of the sun
6. River song
7. Carnival
8. Dance of the sun
9. Death of RaLine-up / Musicians
- Tony Duhig / guitars, percussion
- Jon Field / percussion, flutes
- Dick Cuthell / flugel horn (1)
- John Dentith / drums (1-7)
- Skalia Kanga / harp (2)
- Graham Morgan / drums (8)
- Bill Smith / bass (7)
- Godfrey, Kuma and Alan / drums & bass congas (5)
- Gowan Turnbull / sax (7)

Jade Warrior - Death of Ra

Jade Warrior - Sun Ra & Sun Child

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