donderdag 28 oktober 2010

Affinity - 2007 - Origins: The Baskervilles 1965

Origins: The Baskervilles 1965

Christmas Ball, December 1965
01. She's Not There - (2:32)
02. I Feel Fine - (3:02)
03. It's Good News Week - (3:03)
04. Mr. Tambourine Man - (3:25)
05. I Saw Her Standing There - (2:31)
06. Hallelulah I Love Her So - (2:32)
07. Freight Train - (2:09)
08. Love Potion No.9 - (2:02)
09. You Like Me Too Much - (2:40)
10. Day Tripper - (2:57)
11. We Can Work It Out - (2:10)
12. Peggy Sue Got Married - (2:28)
13. I Can't Get No Satisfaction - (3:46)
14. Yesterday - (2:13)
15. Bumble Bee - (2:19)
16. Perfidia - (2:16)
17. Another Girl - (2:12)
18. Summertime Blues - (2:32)
19. We Wish You a Merry Christmas - (1:37)
20. Get Off My Cloud - (1:39)
21. Sweets For My Sweet - (0:38)
22. Hang on Sloopy - (0:42)
23. Get Off My Cloud - (1:43)

Bonus Tracks
Rehearsal, January 1965
24. Mr Tambourine Man - (3:27)
25. Always Something There to Remind Me - (2:37)
26. You Like Me Too Much - (2:50)

Rehearsal, June 1965
27. Perfidia - (2:18)
28. Trains and Boats and Planes - (3:06)
29. Last Time, The - (3:22)

Chemistry Society Party, December 1965
30. Hey You've Got to Hide Your Love Away - (2:24)
31. Take Five - (3:06)
32. We Wish You a Merry Christmas - (1:01)

The Baskervilles:
Andy Brentnall - Vocals
Kris Johnson - Guitars
Brian Davis - Guitars
Mo Foster - Drums
John Carter - Background Vocals

Additional personnel

Helen Wright - Tambourine

At first glance this doesn’t look a very promising release; for starters, the only future Affinity member within is Mo Foster, and he’s playing drums. Besides, the Baskervilles were no more than a short-lived college covers band, and the bulk of the group members left music swiftly behind once they gained their degrees.
However the band appear to be astonishingly accomplished — even Foster, who learned drums while playing them here. As was the fashion in those days, the Baskervilles faithfully echoed as closely as possible the original style and feel of the songs, yet their repertoire was diverse enough to showcase their jazz, blues, surf, and R&B influences.
Their steaming “Freight Train,” scorching “Summertime Blues,” thundering “Peggy Sue Got Married,” and exuberant “Hallelujah I Love Her So” show where their real sympathies lay. The group’s take on “Get Off of My Cloud” comes close to rivaling the Rolling Stones, whom they promptly snookered by using the song as the opening of a medley comprising more saccharine fare.
Just as amusing is the Baskervilles’ recorder-led stab at “Take Five,” or Foster exuberantly battering about on his kit on “I Feel Fine.” More telling is the slight surf twist Kris Johnson gives “She’s Not There,” a trick he successfully employs elsewhere on the set, and reaches an apotheosis on the rehearsal version of “Perfidia.”
The bulk of this album was recorded live at two school functions and the Baskervilles never attempted any original numbers, happy just to reproduce others’ hits in the band’s own indomitable manner.

Affinity - 2004 - Origins 1965-67

Origins 1965-67

01. Autumn Leaves (4:49)
02. Django (3:30)
03. My Funny Valentine (3:16)
04. I Got Plenty of Nothing (4:54)
05. Date Dere (6:21)
06. Lover Man (5:23)
07. Blues Etude (1:49)
08. Some Day My Prince Will Come (2:28)
09. Cubano Chant (2:35)
10. Jordu (0:58)
11. My Funny Valentine (5:00)
12. Autumn Leaves (5:31)
13. You Look Good to Me (6:17)
14. The Preacher (5:34)
15. My Funny Valentine (2:13)

- Mo Foster / Drums
- Lynton Naiff / Piano
- Nick Nichols / Double bass

After Baskervilles, drummer Mo Foster joins future Affinity pianist Lynton Naiff. Alongside double-bassist Nick Nicholas, the pair formed the succinctly and so accurately named Jazz Trio.
This trio’s recordings make up this set, a clutch of songs recorded in sundry locations around their university base: a rudimentary studio, the debating chamber, and various noisy bars; spanning over three years.
It’s fairly straightforward stuff; the repertoire is locked into light jazz arrangements of sundry pop and torch classics.
However, one definite treat on board, as the final track, a reprise of “My Funny Valentine,” reunites Nicholas and Foster at a 1980 party, then adds Linda Hoyle’s so distinctive vocals to the brew. It isn’t brilliant, it isn’t especially well-recorded. But it does lend a neat circularity to the collection.

Affinity - 2003 - 1971-72


01. Moira's Hand (5:21)
02. Grey Skies (8:42)
03. Cream on Your Face (5:23)
04. Sunshower (5:47)
05. All Along the Watchtower/It's About That... (7:45)
06. Rio (4:50)
07. Poor Man's Son (3:25)
08. Sarah's Wardrobe (4:17)
09. Highgate (3:56)

- Mo Foster / bass, percussion, organ (Hammond), double bass, Fender piano
- Vivienne McAuliffe / vocals, vacuum cleaner
- Grant Serpell / drums, vacuum cleaner
- Dave Watts / piano, organ (Hammond), vacuum cleaner

Singer Linda Hoyle and organ player Lynton Naiff left Affinity in 1971. This set — aptly titled for the timespan it covers — not only documents the band’s further activities, it also suggests that their ultimate demise was far from timely.
With Vivienne McAuliffe proving a more than ample replacement, Affinity continued both gigging and recording, and this collection of previously unreleased demos and outtakes finds the band in excellent form.
One can only imagine how great they might have been, had they had a full studio (and a recording budget) at their disposal!

Affinity - 2003 - Live Instrumentals 1969

Live Instrumentals 1969

01. Jive Samba (4:50)
02. Dis Here (5:48)
03. Comin' Home Baby (3:48)
04. Out of the Storm (7:25)
05. Fever (3:15)
06. 13 Death March (5:42)
07. All Blues (4:17)
08. 81 (4:01)
09. A Day in the Life (6:48)
10. All Blues (4:25)
11. 81 (4:36)
12. Mercy, Mercy, Mercy (4:47)
13. Jive Samba (3:45)
14. On Green Dolphin Street (4:28)

- Mo Foster / bass
- Nick Nicholas / double bass
- Lynton Naiff / piano, organ (Hammond)
- Grant Serpell / drums

A magnificent piece of archive scouring, “Live Instrumentals” was recorded during the month or so that Affinity vocalist Linda Hoyle spent recuperating from an operation on her vocal chords, leaving bandmates to fill their time with a month-long residency at Ronnie Scott’s jazz club in London.
Nine of the tracks here, including tumultuous jazz-rock versions of the Beatles’ “A Day in the Life” (a staple of the like-minded Brian Auger’s repertoire around the same time), and “Fever” were recorded there; four more were taken from a period-radio broadcast, and the album wraps up with the instrumental rampage “On Green Dolphin Street,” recorded by the University of Sussex Jazz Trio, from which the original Affinity ultimately arose.

Affinity - 2002 - If You Live (recorded 1969-1970)

If You Live
(recorded 1969-1970)

1. Eli's Coming [Single] (3:28)
2. United States of Mind [Single] (2:45)
3. Yes Man (7:22)
4. If You Live (3:12)
5. I Am the Walrus  (4:04)
6. You Met Your Match (2:59)
7. Long Voyage (4:17)
8. Little Lonely Man (3:57)

- Mo Foster / percussion, guitar (bass), double bass
- Linda Hoyle / vocals
- Lynton Naiff / percussion, piano, harpsichord, organ (Hammond), piano (electric), vibraphone, Wurlitzer
- Grant Serpell / percussion, drums 

Excellent early jazz-rock/blues/pop/psychedelic band recorded and released just one album during their existence. Really pity!
This album is compilation of their singles, outtakes and unreleased materials. As often with such releases, you can't compare it with regular album, but sometimes such releases contain interesting material for fans. Same case is there - if you never heard Affinity's music, just start from their excellent debut/only album. But if you listened it and love their music, as I am, then try to find this release. You wouldn't be disappointed.
Main thing which attracts on this album - even from such eclectic material you can hear how huge potency had this band! Linda Hoyle is great vocalist, a bit in a manner of Julie Driscoll, and compositions all are melodic, with fantastic atmosphere of their time. Being a eclectic compilation, no strange songs are too different to sound as regular album. But - you will find some brilliant moments here, between some average and raw songs.
Stylistically, album's music is eclectic mix or r'n'b, early bluesy jazz rock, psychedelic pop and rock. Main difference with debut album is there are some great songs and some average songs. On their only studio album there are no fillers at all. But as rare possibility to hear some additional materials, this album is great release for band's fans.

Affinity - 1970 - Affinity


01. I am and so are you (3:31)
02. Night flight (7:15)
03. I wonder if I care as much (3:20)
04. Mr. Joy (5:02)
05. Three sisters (4:57)
06. Cocoanut grove (2:35)
07. All along the watchtower (11:36)

Bonus tracks on Angel Air re-issue (2002):
08. Eli's coming (3:32)
09. United states of mind (2:49)
10. Yes Man (7:25)
11. If You Live (3:15)
12. I Am The Walrus (4:08)
13. You Met Your Match (3:03)
14. Long Voyage (4:18)
15. Little Lonely Man (3:58)

- Mo Foster / bass, bass (electric)
- Linda Hoyle / vocals
- Mike Jupp / guitar, guitar (electric), guitar (12 String)
- Lynton Naiff / piano, harpsichord, piano (electric), vibraphone
- Grant Serpell / percussion, drums 

Like many bands riding on the crest of the jazz-rock wave in the early '70s, AFFINITY released one album and were just getting their footing when they decided to split up, despite the album being well received by the critics. They were fronted by Lynda Hoyle, a powerful vocalist who sounds like a cross between Carol King and Julie Driscoll. The other band members were Mo Foster (bass), Mike Jupp (electric and 12-string guitars), Lynton Naiff (keyboards) and Grant Serpell (drums and percussion). Basically, their music is an eclectic mixture of a blues-rock with jazz, pop and folk influences as well as some rudiments of early '70s psychedelia. Their sound is very brassy and the Hammond organ omnipresent, the overall product sounding very progressive for its day.

Issued in 1970, their only official (self-titled) album shows much variety as well as plenty of soloing. As the excellent sound, musicianship and production will attest, it is a superb achievement for the times. Their material has since been reissued on different cd's, some featuring studio demos and full-band rehearsals. One of them is made up entirely of live instrumentals, recorded at a time when vocalist Linda Hoyle was temporarily hospitalized for a vocal chord operation, leaving the rest of the band on their own.

With horn-based rock bands like Blood, Sweat and Tears, Chase and Chicago enjoying massive late-1960s commercial successes, it was only naturally that record companies all over the world would begin signing any group of folks holding brass instruments.  If nothing else, statistics would dictate that on occasion someone with actual talent would get signed to a recording deal and in this instance the Vertigo label had the numbers on their side.  (Paramount acquired US distribution rights.)

Affinity traces its roots back to the mid-1960s when Lynton Naiff, Nick Nicholas and Grant Serpell met while attending Sussex University.  The three discovered a common interest in jazz, forming The US Jazz Trio.  When Serpell graduated fellow student Mo Foster took over the drums.  Graduating themselves, Naiff and Serpell recorded a pair of singles with the Sussex-based pop outfit Ice, before deciding to return to a more jazz-oriented sound.  Auditions added English teacher/singer Linda Hoyle and  former Tridents guitarist Mike Jopp to the fold (Jopp had previously replaced Jeff Beck in The Tridents).  Jopp's addition had another benefit in that his father agreed to finance the purchase of instruments for the group.

With their line up in place the band spent several month rehearsing and settling on the name Affinity.  They made their public debut at a October 1968 performance at Ronnie Scott's London Revolution Club.  Scott signed them on as house band and quickly became their manager.

Showcasing the talents of bassist Mo Foster, singer Linda Hoyle, guitarist Mike Jopp, keyboard player Lynton Naiff and former Ice drummer Grant Serpell, 1970's John Anthony produced "Affinity" is actually pretty entertaining.  It's far better than the critics careless 'jazz rock' label would have you expect and while the horns undoubtedly put off  lots of potential listeners, they're kept largely under control throughout the seven tracks.  Instead the primary focus was on the attractive and talent Ms. Hoyle and to a lesser degree Naiff's keyboards (betcha thought I was going to say 'Naiff's organ') and Jopp's tasty guitar (check out his work on 'Three Sisters').  That's not to say I don't understand where the critics were coming from.  Musically the collection shared some common ground with the likes of Brian Auger and Julie Driscoll, though thankfully without the irritating jazz influences favored by the former.  I've also read comparisons to Grace Slick and the Jefferson Airplane though I don't really hear it.  Hoyle certainly had a nice voice that shared the same crystalline delivery, but anyone expecting to hear West Coast-styled psych would be grossly disappointed by these measured performances.  So what are the highlights?  Well, to my ears Hoyle and company were at their best on the more focused, rock-oriented tracks like 'I Am and So Are You' and 'Night Flight'.  On the downside, they turn in one of the worst Hendrix-does-Dylan covers I've ever heard (a seemingly endless 'All Along the Watchtower').   Vertigo also tapped the album for a UK-only single: 1970's 'I Wonder If I Care As Much' b/w 'Three Sisters' (Vertigo catalog number 6059 007).

"Affinity" track listing:
(side 1)
1.) I Am and So Are You  (Alan Hull) - 3:30
2.) Night Flight  (Mike Jopp - Linda Hoille) - 7:15
3.) I Wonder If I Care As Much   (Don Everly - Phil Everly) - 3:19
4.) Mr. Joy   (A. Peacock) - 5:03

(side 2)
1.) Three Sisters   (Lynton Naiff -Linda Hoyle) - 4:56
2.) Cocoanut Grove (sic)   (John Sebastian - Zal Yanovsky) - 2:45
3.) All Along the Watchtower   (Bob Dylan) - 11:37

Credited to Linda Hoyle and Affinity, there's also a 1970 English non-LP single: 'Eli's Coming' b/w 'United States Of Mind' (Vertigo catalog number 6059 018). 

Having begun sessions for a follow-on album and an American tour, in early 1971 Hoyle and Naiff both handing in their resignations.  

The survivors subsequently recruited ex-Principal Edwards Magic Theatre singer Vivienne McAuliffe and former Tornados keyboardist Dave Watts as replacements.  The new line recorded some demos and actively toured, but didn't release another effort until some thirty years later when the small Angel label reissued the original LP with the inclusion of the single and five previously unreleased tracks, including two new instrumentals recorded by Foster and Jupp ("Affinity 1971 - 1972" - Angel catalog number SPJCD145). 

 AFFINITY's self-titled album from 1970 is one of the best English progressive albums ever. This album has been available on CD before, but this new Angel Air edition contains no less than 8 bonus tracks. The original LP was released on the well-known Vertigo label, which at the time were one of the most interesting labels for progressive rock. The value of the original LP has reached £100.
Their music is a blend of blues, jazz-rock and progressive rock with lots of nice Hammond organ. The band had a fantastic female vocalist in Linda Hoyle. AFFINITY started writing for a second album, but in January 1971 Linda left the band and that was the end for the whole band.
If you're into 70's progressive rock this album should have its given place in your collection, and if you haven't already got it you should buy it immediately.

woensdag 27 oktober 2010

The Adventures Of Robert Savage - 1971 - The Adventures Of Robert Savage Vol.1

The Adventures Of Robert Savage
The Adventures Of Robert Savage Vol.1

01. Beaver Baby (3.10)
02. Milk Run (3.13)
03. Don't Run And Hide (4.06)
04. A Hard One (3.22)
05. 7 Days Drunk (4.32)
06. Save Us From The Cyclops (5.51)
07. Amy (3.53)
08. Lonely World (3.12)
09. Road Apples (4.29)

Don Parish (Bass, Vocals)
Robert Savage (Guitars, Vocals)
Tommy Richards (Drums)

The Adventures Of Robert Savage is a very obscure psychedelic rock band from the 70's that hailed from Californ-i-a. There is a lot of heavy fuzz guitar here, excellent riffs and far-out solos, that this guy was obviously heavily influenced by the great Jimi Hendrix. Why not ? It's quality all the way man. Grab it here folks

Mick Abrahams - 1971 - Mick Abrahams

Mick Abrahams
Mick Abrahams

01. Greyhound bus
02. Awake
03. Winds of change
04. Why do you do me this way
05. Big queen
06. Not to rearrange
07. Seasons

1st album by British guitarist / vocalist Mick Abrahams, one of the most underrated guitar players in the history as far as I'm concerned. Abrahams first achieved recognition as a founding member of Jethro Tull, with the release of their debut album "This Was", where he plays some incredible guitar licks, which earned him comparisons with "God" Eric Clapton. A personality clash and musical differences between Abrahams and Ian Anderson led to his decision to leave Jethro Tull and form the brilliant Blodwyn Pig, one of the earliest and best Jazz-Rock / Blues Fusion bands ever. The original Blodwyn Pig lineup lasted just under two years and recorded two outstanding albums, breaking up prematurely. Abrahams then formed the Mick Abrahams Band, which is featured on this album. In later years Abrahams was to reform Blodwyn Pig and record several more album with that group (from the 1990s on) as well as leading the Mick Abrahams Band. His amazing guitar playing is unfortunately only recognized by a relatively small circle of fans, although in retrospect his consistently excellent performances in the last five decades are quite unparalleled. This album was recorded soon after the demise of the original Blodwyn Pig and features a great lineup of Mick on guitar, Bob Sargeant on keyboards and guitar, Walt Monaghan on bass and Ritchie Dharma on drums. The material, all written by Abrahams, is a great example of Blues-Rock, the genre in which Abrahams feels most comfortable. The album lost nothing of its charm and beauty and is certainly worth of an honorable place in any serious record collection.

Agamemnon - 1981 - Partl 1& 2

Partl 1 & 2

01. Agamemnon Youth
02. Agamemnon, King of Mykene
03. Agamemnon at Troja
04. Agamemnon Death

- Urs Ritter / drums
- Erich Kuster / vocals, guitars, organ
- Walter Rothmund / bass, keyboards
- Werner Kuster / piano, keyboards, guitars, flute 

AGAMEMNON was a German band that recorded their only release back in 1980. There is some speculation that the band is actually from Switzerland, as that is where the original LP was privately released. Either way, AGAMEMNON S/T is keyboard dominated space/psych/prog music. The lyrics are in German. It is reminiscent of Minotaurus, Epidaurus and in some parts Kyrie Eleison. This album features the first two stories from the mythologic Greek hero. It is divided into 2 main tracks as Parts I and II .

This mysterious 1980's album haunted my inspiration, and luckily I eventually found the Greek mythology inspired funny record. It is also a mythic heroic deed to carry the crown of 1970's progressive rock's crown trough the eighties, an era which is yet strongly present in the sound, especially in synths. Overall aural flavor resembles slighlty the tonal textures of CAROL OF HARVEST's first record without the vocals, and also the albums of STREETMARK. Lady vocals are not though used in this record, excluding some background parts. Mentioned synths support strongly this folky soundrealm, and slightly clumsy but pleasant male vocals describe the epic tale in English. Flow of music is logical, relating to European musical heritage in classical and traditional folk music leanings, performed trough post-psychedelic art rock philosophies. The duration of time used for studying the musical themes is quite amazing, as the dual parts are constructed from minimal basics. For example the first ten minutes concist from sole phasing between two key notes, which carry multiple layers of instrumental variations and innovations, giving birth to very stimulating and pleasant voyage. Also the cleverness in arrangements is evident, an factor not always coupling hypnotic underground music. The soothing vortex of symphatetic underground rock flow has cosmic and bucolic levels, where symphonic and psychelic traditional elements merge together as good willing, mellow entity. I think this record could fit as basis of animated movie for the legend, or maybe coul work for vintage gaming background music to early 1980's "Ulysses" PC game, or reading the Gilgamesh epic. So, "We were amused by this warmhearted artifact". 

Aftershave - 1972 - Skin deep

Skin deep

01. Skin Deep
02. Him
03. Paper Woman
04. Ride, Ride, Ride
05. Sweet Home
06. Amsterdam in My Living Room
07. Near The Sun
08. Pink Rose
09. Sunflower

*Pierre-Alain Kessi (Pakman): guitar and vocal
*André (Dédé) Pascal: drums
*Bruno Zuest: vocal
*“Noldi”: bass guitar

The group was produced in May 1968, in Bienne, by Pierre-Alain Kessi (Pakman) (guitar and vocal) and André (Dédé) Pascal (drums), reinforced by Bruno Zuest (vocal) (future father of “QL”s bassist) and by “Noldi” (bass guitar). One of its first gig consisted in the featuring, in Spring 68, into a pop contest organized by a Zurich magazine. Disqualified without glory with this commentary : “the group might be good if the guitarist did not use so much distortion…”. Nevertheless, the group carried on playing the blues out of the repertoires of Cream, Hendrix, Mayall, Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple. A first single was recorded but never marketed (Look for a woman), because the group had run out of money. After different changes of line up, the group consisted in a trio in 1970, following the withdrawal of lead singer and bass guitarist, this last one being replaced by Jean-Claude Fontana (Cacou). With this new formation, the group won the famous first price in Golf Drouot in Paris in November 1970. In December 1970, Dédé decided to quit the group and was replaced by the late and regretted Rodolphe (Jötu) Baumgartner. Between 1971 and 1974 After Shave became famous, creating their own legend and repertoire. They begun touring in Switzerland, France and Germany, and experienced their first LP called “Skin Deep”. This album is now being gloriously praised in “Hard rock anthology 1968-1980” by Denis Meyer, Editions Enfer Magazine, as well as in the “Encyclopédie du hard rock des seventies” of Denis Protat, Editions Alternatives. Those two specialists repertory more than one thousand groups and records. After Shave also produced two singles. The group took on a new English singer named Barry James Brown, and a new bass guitarist, Silvano “Gugus” Paroni replaced Cacou.
At that time, Pierre-Alain Kessi and his drummer Jötu had the great honour to accompany Champion Jack Dupree on his last Swiss tour. After Shave recorded in 1974 a new LP called “Strange Feelings”, accompanied by a second guirarist, Peter “Misteli” Mischler, in a studio proposed by the producers in Antibes. Unfortunately, the producers not having ever paid the bill, the tapes were impounded and reappeared at the beginning of the 90’s with an Italian pirater edition, mentioning other name and titles of the pieces. Copies of the original mixing still being in Pierre-Alain Kessi’s possession, a new production can still be envisaged. At the beginning of 1975, After Shave recorded a demo with two titles : “So you’r gone away” and “Ain’t ready for you yet” that draw EMI’s attention, in England, who was ready to sign the group, as long as they changed their name. So After Shave became Slick. The contract would nevertheless not being signed, being cancelled by EMI’s directors who had just hit the jackpot with Ten CC’s “I’m not in love”, this last piece sounding like “So you gona way”. It seems not to be such a good idea to compete with oneself! Exit After Shave, exit Slick! Everybody was back again to its first occupations (from

After Tea - 1971 - Jointhouse Blues

After Tea
Jointhouse Blues

01. Jointhouse Blues 4:06
02. You've Got to Move Me 5:19
03. I'm Here 3:35
04. Someday 4:08
05. Let's Come All Together 5:52
06. Trial / Punishment / The End 24:58

*Ferry Lever (guitar, vocals)
*Polle Eduard (bass, guitar, vocals)
*Ilja Gort (drums)
*Uly Grün (keyboards)

After Tea was founded in 1967 by Hans van Eyck and Polle Eduard, both ex-members of the Tee Set. The group produced three moderate hits in 1967-1968: "Not Just A Flower In Your Hair", "We Will Be There After Tea" and "Snowflakes on Amsterdam". The most important composer Hans van Eyck left shortly after the recordings of the first LP, "National Disaster" and subsequently rejoined the Tee Set.
Martin Hage was next to leave, replaced firstly by Pierre van der Linden (later to Focus, Trace), and later by Ilja Gort. In 1969, German keyboard player Uly Grun joined the group. That same year, Ray Fenwick departed for a solo career. He later returned to England to rejoin his 60s bandmates the Spencer Davis Group. He was replaced by ex-Baroques guitarist Ferry Lever. In 1971, the group finally split up. However, just four years later, Polle Eduard, Ferry Lever and Ilja Gort reunited once again to record the single, "Mexico", under the After Tea monicker. Polle Eduard continued his career as songwriter by penning a few for Nico Haak, and subsequently recorded an album of Dutch songs one year later, in 1976. Ilja Gort worked as a producer for Basart.

Aerovons - 1969 - Resurection


01. World Of You
02. Resurrection
03. Say Georgia
04. With Her
05. Quotes & Photos
06. Words From A Song
07. Bessy Goodheart
08. Something Of Yours
09. She's Not Dead
10. The Years
11. Everything's Alright
12. The Children

Tom Hartman - piano, guitar
Bob "Ferd" Frank - guitar
Phil Edholm - guitar
Mike Lombardo - drums
Bill Lombardo - bass

The Aerovons were formed in 1966 in St Louis, Missouri by Tom Hartman. A 1967 demo record was heard by a representative of Capitol Records. In spite of an offer to record in Los Angeles, the group held out hope that they could record in London, the recording home of their heroes, The Beatles. In 1968 they travelled to London twice, receiving offers from both EMI and Decca. In 1969, the band returned to London and recorded an album at Abbey Road  studio. Guitarist Bob Frank, a long time member of the group, left the group just before they went to London to record, due to personal issues. Despite blogs and rumors to the contrary, Bob was never "let go" and was always missed, according to leader Tom Hartman. Only once in England did the band realized that his replacement, Phil Edholm, and the group had differences that proved insurmountable. He left shortly after they began recording.

Once the album was finished, the band returned to St. Louis where more personal problems between a group member and his family caused the group to splinter. EMI decided not to release the album. EMI invited Tom Hartman to come to England and reload, so to speak, but Hartman felt moving to England was too great a step at his age, and the partnership with EMI was dissolved. The album was not released until a CD release in 2003 by RPM. A new Aerovons release with Hartman again as writer and producer is expected to be released by the end of 2009.

The Aerovons maintain an official website for the band at

Aeroblus - 1977 - Aeroblus


01. Vamos a buscar la luz
02. Completamente nervioso
03. Tema solisimo
04. Arboles difusores
05. Vendriamos a buscar
06. Aire en movimiento
07. Vine cruzando el ma
08. Nada estoy sabiendo
09. Sofisticuatro
10. Buen tiempo

Jesus Napolitano Pappo: Guitar, Vocals
Alejandro Medina: Bass, Vocals
Rolando Castello Junio: Drums

Aeroblus -actually it should be "aeroblues", but the band’s name was misspelled on purpose-, it was a trio formed by Pappo with a Brazilian drummer, Júnior; and the bassist Alejandro Medina that was an ex-member of Manal and other Argentine erratic and tasty projects such Billy Bond y La Pesada for instance; adding to this, the bassist and vocalist Enrique Avellaneda, who is featured in some track, as well.
The album it’s short, as usually happened with these heavy rock LPs released in Argentina during the 70s, particularly by the local Music Hall label (strangely this one was released by Philips that, if I’m not wrong, it is or it was a subsidiary of Polygram); and besides being short, "Aeroblus" it’s stylistically, dare one say “samey”, showcasing a heavy blues/proto metal with not too many variants...but in spite of this, the tunes are truly great, and the spirit, the sound of the band has a power that unavoidably moves you, if you can tell a good from a mediocre band in this genre, and Aeroblus belongs clearly to the league of the good ones.
Aeroblus shows-off some groove and sophistication at the same time, especially I note the strength in the Alejandro Medina’s voice -in the songs he sings-, which it’s quite spectacular. The Pappo’s voice hasn’t that grit and stamina, on the other hand, though he was an original and fine composer and a fantastic guitarist; also his lyrics are obscure and semi-philosophical for moments; getting well fit in to the (for 1977) quite apocalyptic sound.
Apparently the "Aeroblus" project was engendered in Brazil, where Pappo and Medina met the drummer Júnior Castello from the band Patrulha do Espaço (band that would release an album in the mid 80s with Pappo himself as stable member)...the recordings for "Aeroblus", the album, were finished in Buenos Aires, with a rather low-budget production: nonetheless the technical quality is pretty decent.
I have several favourite tracks to pick from here: “Vine cruzando el mar”, “Nada estoy sabiendo”, “Buen tiempo” (with a killing-heavy wah-wah), “Completamente nervioso”, and the enigmatic “Vendríamos a buscar”, that years later Pappo re-recorded with a different title: “La adivina”, graced with mysterious lyrics that in some moment say:
“If you accepted, it’s because you were with the fortune-teller; and she told you, that we would come for you…”

This album is quite unknown, maybe unfairly , but as final pseudo footnote, I’d like to say that its lyrics are important in context and form: to some extent, the listener who can not understand them, won’t appreciate fully the LP in its intriguing or suggested parts; and incredibly these parts exist, they are there.

Aera - 1982 - Akataki


01. Mobile Base (2:41)
02. Fake Jake (3:40)
03. Für Charly (10:05)
04. Wieder Da! (4:22)
05. Akataki (18:40)

- Klaus Kreuseder / Soprano & Alto saxophone
- Achim Gieseler / keyboards
- Peter Kühmstedt / bass, guitar, vocals
- Limbus / percussion
- Toni Danner / drums 

Aera - 1979 - Live


01. Scream Your Horizon (9:20)
02. Yellow Moon (2:51)
03. Stoned Out (3:19)
04. What I Can Do, You Can Do To (4:22)
05. Sulzheim Swinging (8:39)
06. Harm-O-Nights (2:52)
07. Scooter Future (11:33)

- Roman Bunka / guitar, vocals
- Locko Richter / bass
- Klaus Kreuzeder / lyricon, Soprano & Alto saxophone
- Lutz Oldemeier / drums
- Helmut Meier-Limberg / percussion
- Freddy Setz / drums, organ 

Aera - 1979 - Türkis


01. Fetzenotto (4:01)
02. Pfiffe (4:23)
03. Dracula (11:04)
a) Teen Clown
b) Park und Elfe (Sarg und Nelke)
c) Teen Clown Goes Downtown
04. Annettchen (1:19)
05. You Need Some Speed (6:28)
06. Türkis (8:36)
07. Siebert (7:03)

- Klaus Kreuzeder / Soprano & Alto saxophone, lyrikon
- Helmut Meier-Limberg / percussion
- Lutz Oldemeier / vocals
- Freddy Setz / vocals, organ, percussion, string ensemble
- Matz Steinke / bass, percussion
- Achim Gieseler / keyboards, Fender piano, Hohner D 6, Moog, string ensemble (3, 5 & 6)

- Muck Groh / guitar (2)
- Locko Richter / bass (2)

Third album from this German combo that was entering a more difficult phase, plagued with personnel problem and they had to wait almost three years since the release of their second album. I am not sure about this but the group might have disbanded during this time. By now (79), the Ihre Kinder and Embryo roots were long gone, and guitarist Muck Groh had departed (although he guests on one track), leaving wheelchair-bound saxman Kreuzeder a bit alone at the driving wheel. As he was the only remaining member from the previous two albums, understandably the group sounded quite different, especially that the JR/F scene had gone from jazz rock to jazz-fusion. Still released on the legendary Erlkonig label, this album (sporting a cartoon-like artwork) sounded very different, starting with vocals and yet another shift away from progressive rock towards jazz-fusion.
As said above, the guest musos included old Aera Muck Groh, Missing Link's Limberg and they would be joined for touring and the future next live album by ex-Embryo Roman Bunka. But Aera was now a very percussive group with two full time percussion players and most other contributing some more at a given time, thus giving often a Latino feel to the album, a bit like Pazssport did at the time, although not quite that extensive. The vinyl's first side starts very mildly with two run-of-the-mill fusion tracks that are effortlessly forgotten as soon as you hear their three-piece suite Dracula. Driven by a descending keyboard line, the group plays their heart out with Kreuzeder soloing away. The closing tidbit is also best forgotten.
The flipside doesn't really start much different, with the average opener You Need Some Speed and the closing Siebert (both above the 6-min mark, and enjoyable if not too picky), the highlight is again the longer (title in this case) track. Indeed Turkis has a slight eastern feeling and a great electric piano that does give it the edge over the rest of the album. Isn't it sad to realize that the two best tracks are indeed the most progressive rock ones? It is safe to say that this album is saved by Gieseleer's keyboards, even if the rest of the group are all ewxcellent musicians (Kreuzeder in particular), but the inspiration was not leadig the group towards adventure, but rather commercial safety.
As mentioned above a live album was up next and then the group will endure further line-up shuffles, record ever-increasing commercial jazz-fusion albums (Akataki is still worthy) on another legendary label, Spiegelei. As for the present album, it is an honest JR/F album of the time (but 79 was not the best of times for that style of music) , but we are a far cry from their firqst two albums, which are much better and should be investigated in priority.

Aera - 1976- Hand Und Fuss

Hand Und Fuss

01. Mechelwind (9:24)
02. Alabaster Keaton (3:06)
03. Wrdlbrmfd (5:33)
04. Elephen Elephants (8:40)
05. Herbstzeitlos (2:27)
06. Ad Absurdum (5:06)
07. Kamele On (5:35)

- Klaus Kreuzeber / Soprano alt-sax & flute
- Peter Malinowski / bass
- Christoph Krieger / violin
- Lucky Schmidt / drums (vocal)
- Muck Groh / guitar, vocals (7)
- Als Gast Onkel Latzi / Bariton-saxophone & oboe (7)

Without any doubts "Hand und Fuss" has been the more sophisticated and varied one of AERA's first two albums. From the original line-up only Groh and Kreutzeder was left-over and their sound gained a lot from the addition of violinist Christoph Krieger. Musical leadership has been taken over more or less by Kreutzeder and composing has been shared between Groh and the new bass player Peter Malinowski . Their new drummer Lucky Schmidt managed to bring much more forceful rhythms with a jazzier orientation into their music. Musicianship by all band members is here absolutely outstanding and each of the seven compositions is a little gem on its own. Highlights are the highly diversified "Mechelwind", the inventive "Elephen Elephants" with an amazing drum solo and the bolero-type "Kamele On". But the remaining tracks are really not inferior at all to those ones. Maybe worth mentioning that Klaus Kreutzeder presents some jazzy scat singing on "Ad Absurdum", actually the only "vocals" apart from some weird yowling in the finish of the last track.

Aera - 1975 - Humanum Est

Humanum Est

01. Papa Doing (8:22)
02. Demmerawäng (7:07)
03. Hodibbel (5:37)
04. Sechs Achtel (10:45)
05. Jonas Schläft (4:20)
06. Alois' Flötending (2:26)

- Wolgang Teske / drums
- Klaus Kreuzeder / saxophone & flute
- Dieter Bauer / bass
- Muck Groh / guitar
- Peter Malinowsky / bass (6) 

AERA has been a little-known band hailing from a small Bavarian village called "Mechelwind" (hence the title of one track on their second album). Similar to related band EMBRYO members were coming and going but originally the band consisted of guitarist Muck Groh (IHRE KINDER), bass player Dieter Bauer (2066 AND THEN), drummer Wolfgang Teske and wheelchair-bound Klaus Kreuzeder on sax and flute. They issued altogether four studio albums and one live one with changing line-ups and exhibiting different music styles. Their first two releases which can be obtained as a 2-in-1 CD (being a very worthy purchase that luckily I happen to own) are basically revealing a lively jazz-rock sound at times with extended jammin' not that far away from EMBRYO, KRAAN or NUCLEUS.
Their debut "Humanum Est" here in review was already quite an impressing demonstration of their musical prowess though still lacking a bit of variation which is nicely compensated by the addition of their second one on the CD-reissue. The six fully instrumental compositions, all written by guitarist Muck Groh can be basically described as guitar-dominated laid-back virtuoso jazz-rock with some blues and folk tossed in. Very noteable are Kreuzeder's presentations on sax and flute, two instruments belonging to my favourites in that kind of music. Though being by all means a very noteworthy debut and a highly enjoyable album especially on second side of this record the music seams to become a bit meandering and repetitive. Thus without his counterpart "Hand und Fuss" "Humanum Est" might appear slightly disappointing for advanced Krautrock fans after a few spins.
Nevertheless AERA can be considered as another very interesting band within the rich German progressive scene of the 70's. Moreover it has been one of those making music just for fun without any commerial concern what's demonstrated very well by the fact that their debut has been rejected by all commercial labels forcing them to publish it on their own one "Erlkönig". By the way for those wondering what the oddly sounding titles actually mean: they are some sensible nonsense partly in ancient Bavarian idiom that is even incomprehensible toany one not from around there...

The Action - 1967 - Rolled Gold

Rolled Gold

01. Come around
02. Something to say
03. Love is all
04. Icarus
05. Strange Roads
06. Things you cannot see
07. Brain
08. Look at the view
09. Climbing up the wall
10. Really doesn't matter
11. I'm a stranger
12. Little boy
13. Follow me
14. In my dream
15. In my dream (Demo)

*Reg King (lead vocals)
*Alan 'Bam' King (lead guitar, vocals)
*Peter Watson (guitar)
*Mike "Ace" Evans (bass guitar, vocals)
*Roger Powell (drums)

The Action were the other great English band produced by George Martin in the 1960s: London mods who pressed guitar havoc and the airtight pop of Martin's star clients, the Beatles, into a sparkling R&B sealed by the exquisite agony of singer Reg King. After their '65-'67 singles with Martin fell shy of hitsville, the Action cut their own set of demos. But the band broke up, and the tapes were shelved -- until now. Rolled Gold has an unfinished air, but that can't hide the invention in the Action's acid soul: the rolling wah-wah-guitar thunder in "Brain"; the snorting fuzz and dirty-cherub harmonies in "Follow Me." The huge jangle and magnetic chorus of "Something to Say" would make Oasis ache with envy. The Action never became stars, but Rolled Gold justifies the legend.

Acqua Fragile - 1974 - Mass Media Stars

Acqua Fragile
Mass Media Stars

01. Cosmic Mind Affiar (7:22)
02. Bar Gazing (5:07)
03. Mass-Media Stars (6:55)
04. Opening Act (5:40)
05. Professor (6:49)
06. Coffee Song (5:57)

- Gino Campanini / guitar, mandolin, guitar (electric), vocals
- Piero Canavera / guitar, percussion, vocals
- Franz Dondi / bass
- Claudio Fabi / piano
- Bernardo Lanzetti / guitar, guitar (electric), vocals, guitar (8 String)
- Maurizio Mori / keyboards, vocals

A definite improvement over their self-titled debut, and a decided turn into a more progressive direction. The PFM parallel still applies, though even more pronounced this time, with a greater role for Maurizio Mori's keys. On their previous outing, he was pretty much limited to organ and piano. This time, he adds synthesizers and Mellotron to proceedings, adding much symphonic depth.
The chief standout is the opening track, "Cosmic Mind Affair", full of bright harmonies, winsome melodies and memorable keyboard riffs. In fact, the whole album is packed with the sumptuous, CSN-derived vocal harmonies which were the saving grace of their first album. Bernardo Lanzetti still sounds unnervingly like Roger Chapman. If you're a Family fan (as I am), this won't be a problem. If not, at least console yourself with the knowledge that he does indeed sound better in harmony than solo.

There's at least one interesting Acqua Fragile website out there:

Similarly, Lanzetti and Dondi both have  a web presence, but there also in Italian (funny since Lanzetti spent some of his teen years living in Texas):

Acqua Fragile - 1973 - Acqua Fragile

Acqua Fragile
Acqua Fragile

01. Morning Comes (7:22)
02. Comic Strips (3:56)
03. Science Fiction Suite (5:54)
04. Song From A Picture (4:09)
05. Education Story (4:12)
06. Going Out (2:56)
07. Three Hands Man (8:07)

- Gino Campanini / guitar, vocals
- Piero Canavera / guitar, drums, vocals
- Franz Dondi / bass
- Bernardo Lanzetti / guitar, vocals
- Maurizio Mori / keyboards, vocals

ACQUA FRAGILE formed in Parma, Italy in 1971. They are perhaps best known for the band that were to supply PFM's English singing vocalist Bernado Lanzetti, making his debut with them on Chocolate Kings.

Lanzetti with guitarist Gino Campanini and drummer Piero Canavera had played together in Gli Immortali. Joined on keyboards by Maurizio Mori and bassist Franz Dondi, formerly of I Moschettieri, who released a single in 1967, they shortly changed their name to ACQUA FRAGILE.

It was to be two years before their eponymous debut album saw the light of day, due to difficulty in finding a record company that would allow them to release it with English sung lyrics. Musically they bore a resemblance to GENESIS and GENTLE GIANT, with harmony vocals not unlike CROSBY, STILLS, NASH AND YOUNG, no doubt influenced by the time Lanzetti spent in the USA. Lanzetti's vocals have a similar feel to Roger Chapman of FAMILY and the album is skilfully played by the already at the time, well versed players. The plan to sing in English backfired as it wasn't well received in Italy and didn't receive a release abroad. Undeterred, their second album Mass Media Stars, released in 1974 saw the band treading similar musical territory and did receive a release in the USA.

Mori quit and was replaced by ex-THE TRIP keyboardist Joe Vescovi and shortly after a bigger blow came when Lanzetti left for PFM. The band soldiered on for a while longer bringing in former I TOP 4 and I DIK DIK man Roberto Facini. Lanzetti remained with PFM until 1980 followed by a successful solo career. He is now a member of MANGALA VALLIS. Canavera and Dondi went on to play with ROCKY'S FILJ and the ACQUA FRAGILE name has recently been reborn as the ACQUA FRAGILE PROJECT by Dondi. He is the only original member participating in the project.

dinsdag 26 oktober 2010

Achim Reichel - 2006 - Volxlieder

Achim Reichel 

01 Der Rosenmund        
02 Der Lindenbaum (Am Brunnen vor dem Tore)        
03 Die Gedanken sind frei        
04 Hohe Tannen        
05 Im schönsten Wiesengrunde        
06 Kein Feuer, keine Kohle        
07 Der Mond ist aufgegangen        
08 Oh wie kalt ist es geworden        
09 Röslein auf der Heiden        
10 Leise zieht durch mein Gemüt        
11 Du liegst mir (im Herzen)        
12 Die Ballade von den Königskindern        
13 Weisst du wieviel Sternlein stehen        
14 Ick bün Kock, segt he        
15 Hammonia   

Ache - 1977 - Blå Som Altid

Blå Som Altid

01. Den Mellemungende Tid
02. Kilometerstenen
03. Pantomime
04. Evig Søndag
05. Perafinn
06. Se dig omkring
07. Ingen returbillet

- Finn Olafsson / guitars, vocal
- Per Wium / keyboards, vocal
- Steen Toft Andersen / keyboards, harmonica, vocal
- Torsten Olafsson / bass, vocal, vibraphone, shakuhachi
- Gert Smedegaard / drums

Delightul 70´s prog rock band from Denmark. I really didn´t know about its existence before I saw some reviews here on PA. I wanted to start with them with their third album, the conceptual Pictures From Cyclus 7, but when the CD arrived they had mistaken it for this one. Oh well, guess I´ll have to write about that one afterwards. Anyway, Bla Som Altid is far from bad. In fact I liked very much. Although they sing in their native language on this work, their sound is very much international.
The music here is a mix of heavy rock with some folk inlfuences, plus a little bit of jazz and symphonic elements. Sometimes they sound like Deep Purple MK I (around the time of their self titled LP), sometimes like Uriah Heep or Jethro Tull, but most of the time you can say they have a personality of their own. Their main feature here is the guitar talents of Finn Olafsson: the guy is very good. I also loved the keyboards (lots of Hammond!). Vocals are only average, but some backings are very well done. Production is ok. A shame this CD is so short (35 minutes)
Their songwriting is quite good, but not exceptional: there are no fillers, all tracks are good and varied, with tasteful arrangements and nice perfomances by all involved. Nothing is very complicated or bombastic as one might expect from a symphonic band, but it is still good. If you like 70´s prog rock with the aforementined highs and lows, you should check this out. Ache definitly deserved more exposure.

Ache - 1976 - Pictures From Cyclus 7

Pictures From Cyclus 7

01. Cyclus 7, Introduction (3:20)
02. Roses (Registering) (6:17)
03. Still hungry (Vampyre song) (7:03)
04. What Can We Do? (0:47)
05. Still registering (2:53)
06. Our Lives (5:53)
07. Last Part 1 (1:02)
08. Outtroduction (4:07)
09. Last Part 2 (1:45)
10. Expectation (6:48)

- Stig Kreutzfeldt / vocals, percussion
- Johnnie Gellett / vocals, percussion, acoustic guitar
- Finn Olafsson / guitars
- Peter Mellin / keyboards, harmony vocals
- Steen Toft Andersen / bass
- Gert Smedegaard / drums

This is a marvelously accessible record, so much so I'd say it would be a great pick to play for someone who's not sure if they like prog, to break them in. If Dennis Deyoung sang vocals on this you could mistake it for a lost late 70s Styx album. There is a fair amount of cheese factor to parts of it but this is forgivable because there is just enough payoff to make this an interesting release. Bouncy and melodic in spots with a nice mix of textures and pretty good sound on the CD. Nice acoustic interludes pop up here and there. The vocals are very good and the band is able enough, though I was found myself wishing they would tear into a little more aggressive guitar work than they do. I guess that's why I can't go to 4 stars personally, while I like the record, it just seems stuck in mid gear a bit too much.
The photo on the back cover is almost worth the price of admission alone, reminding me of what fun was being had in the late 70s euro-prog scene. Let's just say there may well have been a great party the night that photo was taken! If you want a pleasant and solid album you can sing along to, go for it. Just don't expect anything too serious.

Ache - 1971 - Green Man

Green Man

01. Equatorial rain (6:59)
02. Sweet Jolly Joyce (3:47)
03. The Invasion (5:58)
04. Shadow Of A Gypsy (4:38)
05. Green Man (4:38)
06. Accheron (4:47)
07. We Can Work It Out (8:43)

- Torsten Olafsson / vocals, bass, spinet
- Peter Mellin / Hammond organ, grand piano, vibraphone, vocals
- Finn Olafsson / electric & acoustic guitars, vocals, percussion
- Glenn Fischer / drums, percussion
- Johnny Reimar / backing vocals

Well if you keep turning over rocks it’s inevitable that every once and a while you’ll find something worth keeping underneath some of them. That’s the case with Ache, a surprisingly underexposed proto/heavy prog Danish band whose existence dates back nearly forty years. These guys may be well known to their fans, but like the saying goes – ‘if you’ve never heard it it’s new to you’.
Well, I’d never heard these guys until recently, and had only heard of them from doing routine research of symphonic prog bands during the process of updated biographies and trying to find the logical connections between groups of various sub-genres. When I finally got a chance to check out one of their albums this seemed to be the best choice since it was more varied than their two-track debut and fell into a more promising time period than their final two mid-seventies albums.
I haven’t heard any of those other albums yet, but this sophomore release of the band is well worth taking some time to get to know. The music varies widely, from heavy Hammond-fueled rock to a sort of rock ballad to muddled-sounding psych to a really novel Beatles cover. All great stuff!
The lineup includes a bunch of unknowns: then seventeen-year old guitarist Finn Olafsson on a warm Rickenbacker as well as acoustic and 12-string; Peter Mellin on his fat Hammond and chortling out well-timed vocal harmonies, not to mention vibraphone and overlaid piano tracks throughout; percussionist Glenn Fischer; and bassist/vocalist Torsten Olafsson. There are also lots of “special effects”, mostly toward the first half of the album and mostly what appear to be pre-recorded sounds mixed back on tracks during the post-production process.
The album cover shows what appears to be a boogey man, or maybe just some creepy guy in a Halloween costume (do Danes recognize Halloween?). Anyway the lyrics for most of the tracks are typical late-sixties combination fantasy with vaguely social overtones, and partly psychedelic. The title track by the way kicks off sounding like some sort of early Manfred Mann ditty with a simple tempo, very little percussion beyond simple snare, and acoustic guitar. But the Rickenbacker kicks in shortly, and by the time the Hammond wades into the mix its clear this isn’t something from a 1965 playlist.
Back to the beginning though, “Equatorial Rain” starts off with some of those goofy sound effects, but these quickly give way to a Hammond/vocal dirge that could pass for Ray Manzarek and Jim Morrison in a b-side of the Doors 1967 classic “The End”. In fact Torsten Olafsson shows an uncanny ability to sound like Morrison at several points of this album. This stuff isn’t quite as powerful as what the Doors were doing at the same time, but from what I’ve read these guys were better showmen in that they didn’t no-show half the time or have their lead singer puke and expose himself when they did make it to the stage. So in those two ways they weren’t like the Doors at all. Selah.
The more I listen to “Sweet Jolly Joyce” the more it makes me picture David Bowie trying to do punk while on acid. Hey, I’m all about word pictures, and that one works for me.
You can tell this wasn’t recorded in a single session (and maybe not even at a single studio). “The Invasion” is much more muddled and flat-sounding than the rest of the album, and is basically a slow, hypnotic psych number with long Hammond passages that culminate in a nice guitar/drum finish. This is a multi-part and rather abstract story of some sort that probably made a lot more sense in 1970 than it does today.
The band’s one-hit claim to fame must have been “Shadow of a Gypsy” since it still features on their web site (both the lyrics and the music). This is a very Procol Harum-sounding tune, mysterious, Hammond heavy, mystical lyrics, and deep harmonic backing vocals from what sounds like the whole rest of the band. I can easily see this being a hit any time between 1968 and 1973.
“Acheron” is another tune whose keyboards and guitar remind me a lot of the late-sixties Doors, but maybe with a little more of a jazz texture than what those guys ever displayed.
Finally the album ends with the most unexpected and original version of the Beatles “We Can Work it Out” I’ve ever heard. Basically this is an organ and drum dirge that progresses into a highly rhythmic and very psychedelic extended instrumental/ chanting passages and vocals that sound more like a stoned Londoner than some Nordic dude. Hard to describe, but if you can find this it’s a very original rendition that most prog fans will probably enjoy. Best guitar work on the album as well.
According to the band’s web site these guys seem to still be making music in some fashion or another, although it doesn’t appear they put any albums out in about thirty years. This seems a bit obscure to me but the CD has only been out for about eight years so there must be many more well-informed proggers than I as the demand must have been there to reissue it on CD. A great find, one of those rare examples of excellent very early prog that didn’t end up on the overexposed, overplayed list like most of the huge prog bands of that day. Highly recommended to pretty much any prog music fan.

Ache - 1970 - De Humino Urbano

De Humino Urbano

01. De Homine Urbano (19:01)
1) Overture
2) Soldier theme
3) Ballerina theme
4) Pas de deux
5) Ogre theme
6) Awakening
7) The dance of the demons
8) Pas de trois
9) The last attempt
10) Finale
02. Little Things (18:37)

- Torsten Olafsson / bass, vocals, harpsichord
- Finn Olafsson / guitars, vocals
- Peter Mellin / Hammond organ, piano, vibraphone, vocals
- Glenn Fischer / drums, percussion

The seeds for ACHE were sown in the early 60's via the Danish beat group THE HARLOWS. When HARLOWS Torsten Olafsson (bass), Peter Mellin (organ) and Glenn Fischer (drums) were joined by former MCKENZIE SET guitarist Finn Olafsson in 1968, ACHE was born.

They spent the next two years working on an extended piece called "De Homine Urbano", which was released as programme music to an experimental "rock ballet" in 1970. Released on the Philips label the same year with an accompanying single of non-album tracks, it netted positive reviews in the Danish press. ACHE's "rock theater" created something of a sensation in the rock underground, and "Green Man" followed in 1971. The next major ACHE project, by a revised six-piece version of the band, was a conceptual work called "Pictures From Cyclus 7", written in collaboration with lyricist Bo Lillesöe in 1975 and released one year later.

Ache have remained active on and off, albeit sporadically, ever since. Their only other major work (i.e.: not counting singles and compilations) has been "Blå som altid", a folk-oriented album released in 1978.

The first Ache album is a weird one as the music was written for a BALLET if you can believe it. There was rock-opera and now rock ballet. Actually only the first side epic was written for the ballet , borrowing lots from the Classics masters (much like The Nice did) with heavy instrumentation (sometimes a bit exagerated but never in the terms of ELP either). When I speak of The Nice's interpretation of classic music , I want to make clear I speak of Bernstein's America and Gerschwin's Blue Rondo Ala Turc superb (and Nice) arrangements and not at all like the pointless Brandenburger Concerto or Five Bridges Suite.
Outside of that comparison , the guitar is also very present (as it was in the Nice's Thoughts albums) and very full of energy but the album is not flawless. Some riffs can even approach Zeppelin's power.The second track (also approaching 20 min) is less classically orientated but full of the typical (and great) instrumental excesses of that era.
One of the best album to come out of Denmark, at the time. The follow-up is also fine but more restrained and both albums have been released together as Eric pointed out out on that page , this is a master buy.

Accolade - 1970 - Accolade


01. Maiden Flight Eliza (2:42)
02. Starting All Over Again (4:45)
03. Prelude To a Dawn (3:10)
04. Never Ending Solitude (2:36)
05. Nature Boy (9:35)
06. Gospel Song (3:31)
07. Calico (3:03)
08. Ulyssees (12:32)
09. Go On Home (2:37)

- Eden Abba / double-bass
- Brian Cresswell / saxophone, flute
- Gordon Giltrap / guitar, vocals
- Ian Hoyle / drums
- Don Partridge / guitar, vocals, vibraphone

ACCOLADE were a short-lived band (1969-1971) whose musical emphasis was on combining acoustic instrumentation and light jazz/fusion arrangements with bucolic British folk lyrics and sensibilities. They released just two albums and a single in their brief tenure, though managed to tour throughout most of their active existence. The original lineup consisted of woodwind player Brian Cresswell, singer/guitarist Gordon Giltrap, drummer Ian Hoyle and guitarist Don Partridge.

The band's first album included their most lasting contribution to music in the form of a version of American bassist eden ahbez' (aka George Aberle aka Eden Abba) "Nature Boy", a languid and complex folk tale first recorded by NAT KING COLE in the 1940's, and since covered more than seventy times, including by MILES DAVIS, HARRY CONNICK JR, CELINE DION, JAMES BROWN, JOSE FELICIANO, the GATHERING's Annie Haslam, and most recently by the Greek psych band WILL-O-THE WISP. The song has charted as a single five times in that period.

Pool would depart the band after a 1970 tour incident in Sweden involving Partridge, touring briefly with COLOSSEUM before leaving the music business altogether for a career in graphic design (Giltrap had already left by that time and would go on to a lucrative solo career). Guitarist Wizz Jones would join for the band's second album, which was released only in the UK; and they dissolved shortly after its release.

This is one of those albums that, like Incredible String Band’s ‘The 5000 Spirits or the Layers of the Onion’ or the Pentangle’s debut, helped really define the understated range of progressive folk music in the late sixties; this despite becoming a rather obscure and little-known bit of the genre’s history. The nine all-acoustic tracks showcase a style of jazz-tinted folk that incorporated some of the finest nuances of singer-songwriter stylings, rock tempo, jazzy improvisation and British folk into something that had little parallel in its day. The result is an album that grows in appeal with every listen even forty years after its release.One thing should be noted though; this was not a band made up of grammar school chums or unknown amateurs. In fact, virtually everyone in the band was an established musician of some merit prior to its formation in late 1968. Guitarist Gordon Giltrap had already released a couple solo folk albums and was on his way to a lengthy and prolific career. Founder Don Partridge had been (and would become again) a street musician who had to his credit a couple of unlikely hit singles on the late sixties British charts (“Rosie” and “Blue Eyes”). And bassist Malcolm Poole, who would replace original bassist Eden Abba (more about him later) somewhere between the beginning of these studio sessions and the band’s second album, was an alumnus of the Artwoods, a mid-sixties blues-rock band that included future Deep Purple keyboardist Jon Lord and Ron Wood’s older brother Arthur in its lineup. Drummer Ian Hoyle was a relative unknown but would go on to appear on at least one Wizz Jones album, and flautist/ saxophonist Brian Cresswell appears to have been the only formally educated musician in the group.
I’m not really clear on the background of the band’s formation, but there was clearly an attempt with their music to jazz-up (literally) British folk music with some rock and varied arrangements, while at the same time keeping a focus on acoustic instrumentation and storytelling lyrics in the finest tradition of British and other Anglo folk music. The net result, like I said before, will grow on prog folk fans with repeated listens.
One band I would point to as appearing to have been influenced by this group’s music is the modern Greek folk band Will-o-the Wisp. That band’s vocalist Aggelos Gerakitis bears a striking resemblance to Accolade’s Partridge, and their cover of bassist Eden Abba’s original “Nature Boy” reinforces my suspicion that at least a couple members of that band have this record in their collection.
Speaking of Abba, his song “Nature Boy” appeared for the first time (to the best of my knowledge) as a Nat King Cole single in 1948. It has since of course been covered by scores of artists, has appeared in numerous films and television series, and became the title of a biography about Abba’s life written shortly after his death due to an auto accident in 1995. There’s a fascinating person if you ever feel like digging into his history.
The most interesting thing about the tracks on this album is the palpable amount of familiarity you feel with them even on the first playing. From the opening “Maiden Flight Eliza” with its lively flute and West Coast harmonizing, to the closing languid ballad “Go on Home” and its almost America (the band) sounding peacefulness; this album is full of comfortable, comforting and casual folk music imbued with just enough modern touches to make it still palatable years after its initial release (and possibly even more so considering how little impression it made back in 1969/1970).
Top tracks are without a doubt “Nature Boy” and the lengthy, rambling folk pseudo-biographical sketch “Ulysses”. This album and these songs could never be made today; only the diversity and free-thinking air of the times allowed them to come into being even then, and frankly too few music fans of those times appreciated the simple and sincere beauty of these songs even then.
I don’t suppose this qualifies as a masterpiece, but it certainly deserves recognition as one of the seminal works of the progressive folk genre, and I suspect it is much more well-known to many modern folk musicians today than it is to fans of their music. Well worth seeking out, and highly recommended to prog folk fans of nearly every stripe, but near-essential for any serious prog folk lover

Abus Dangereux - 1980 - Le Quatrieme Mouvement

Abus Dangereux 
Le Quatrieme Mouvement

01. Le roy est mort, vive le roy (7:40)
02. Le Quatrieme Mouvement (5:15)
03. Interlude (1:00)
04. Funk au Chateau (2:55)
05. Theme D'Hiver (3:00)
06. Ballade Courte (9:10)
07. Danse du Paques (5:57)

- Pierrejean Gaucher / guitars
- Eric Bono / piano, keyboards
- Laurent Kzrewina / saxophones
- Alain Mourey / drums
- Pascal Gaillard / bass
- Sylvie VoiseE / vocal
- Caitriona Walsia / vocal
- Dan Ken / vibes
- Arnaud Jarlan / percussion
- Nigel Warren Green / cello 

Abus Dangereux is the brainchild of Pierrejean Gaucher, the guitarist of the band. His love for music began at age 10 when he received for his birthday the single Let It Be by The Beatles. It made him continue to explore this music and got Deep Purple and Pink Floyd albums. This lead him to listen to prog - Yes, Genesis, King Crimson and from there he got to know fusion and jazz based prog bands such as Soft Machine, Gong, Magma and Mahavishnu Orchestra. However it would take several more years until he became aware of modern jazz. He also started playing a guitar alone in his room at this time.

At the age of 18 (1977) he started Abus Dangereux. The name was chosen as a reference to a health warning on cigarette packets (the first bassist was a heavy smoker). As he recalls the first album, Le Quatrieme Mouvement, was a band effort in that everyone did their part in composing the tracks. So the heavy fusion and Zeuhl influences are not solely Gaucher's "fault". Looking back or rather listening back, he gives much credit to the keyboardist Eric Bono. However the lineup for the first album was temporary and hired for the studio recording. Only Eric Bono and Laurent Krewina played before with Abus Dangereux. The album itself was recoreded in London at Rockstar studio in December 1979. They had to trim the music from 2 hours to around 40 minutes for the recording.
This album contains, as Gaucher said in an interview, all the music influences he absorbed until then, which explains the trimming down that was needed. He also states this is an immature album, and finds his guitar playing horrible. And still, he is proud of this album. And he should. This thrilling release has exciting fusion based tracks with Zeuhl references which can be heard in the drumming and bass.

Between this first album and the next, Gaucher went for six months to Berklee (Boston) to study music where he discovered modern jazz and it inspired him to start composing more jazz-oriented music. In accordance with this, the next albums were more jazz-rock in nature. In the meantime the band dissolved and the only remaining member was Alain Mourey the drummer.

Abus' instruments included vibes and marimba and in January 1981 Benoit Moerlen joined the group for several shows before the temporary break. However this was to end with the Live album (1985) when the Gaucher shortened the name to Abus (1986) and started using computers and programming in his music.

The shortening of the name was to reflect the new face of the band, the attempt to reach larger audience and the new sound. In 1991 came the last Abus album, Maneges and a south-American tour. Gaucher was tired with the band and continued with his new project New Trio in which he focused more on his guitar playing.  
 I had seen this bands name mentioned on a couple of Zeuhl threads,so i was surprised to see them listed here under Jazz/Fusion.Well after spending some time with this album there is no doubt it belongs in this latter category.Actually on the back of the cd it says " of the best French jazz-rock Lp's in recent memory.The approach harkens back to the golden days of ZAO,MAGMA,GONG...A tight rhythm section serves as the backdrop over which guitar,keyboards and female voice dance,counterpointing each other with delicate intertwining.Cerebral,melodic sections alternate with high energy jams effectively.Definite French fusion..."(eurock music magazine-november 1980).And i would say that the two females who sing the vocal melodies bring to mind the Zeuhl genre,although they are very much reserved in their singing,not out front like ESKATON or MAGMA. "Le Roy Est Mort,Vive Le Roy" opens with vocal melodies and liquid sounding keys.The drums join in as things start to accellerate 2 minutes in.I really like the sound after 4 minutes.The mood changes after 6 minutes as it becomes pastoral.Sax comes in late. "Le Quatrieme Mouvement" features high pitched vocal melodies that come and go.The tempo changes a lot.We get some sax and then percussion 2 minutes in before the bass player shows us what he's got.And he's got plenty.Keyboard melodies join in the fun. "Interlude" is a short percussion filled piece. "Funk Au Chateau" is a light jazzy tune with a wonderful display of sax playing.Late in the song we get a beat as vocal melodies come in to end the song. "Theme D'Hiver" might be my favourite on this album.This one is more reserved with cello,bass and light drums.The sound builds 2 minutes in briefly as it becomes brighter with more energy. "Ballade Courte" begins with vocal melodies, and we get a melody a minute in with some great sax as well as a good beat.More sax 3 minutes in as the song starts and stops.Bass,liquid keys and percussion follow.The guitar takes over for 1 1/2 minutes before the vocal melodies return. "Danse Du Paques" has more vocal melodies,sax,keys,drums and bass.The mood and tempo changes.There is a light jazzy passage as well as some good intricate guitar melodies. If you like both Zeuhl and Jazz then this is a must.Check out the very well done biography penned by Avestin to learn more.I must say for my tastes this is barely a 4 star record.It keeps growing on me though, and it's certainly an excellent addition to anyone's Jazz collection.  

maandag 25 oktober 2010

Abstract Truth - 1971 - Silver Trees

Abstract Truth
Silver Trees

01. Pollution (Henson)
02. All The Same (Wolfaardt)
03. Original Man (Wolfaardt)
04. Silver Trees (Measroch/Dickman)
05. In A Space (Henson/Bergin)
06. Moving Away (Measroch)
07. Two (Henson)
08. Blue Wednesday Speaks (Measroch)
09. It's Alright With Me (Wolfaardt)

Ken E Henson: Guitar, vocals
Peter Measroch: Piano, organ, flute, harpsichord, vocals
George Wolfaardt: Bass, flute, drums, vocals
Sean Bergin: Flute, saxophone 

Abstract Truth - 1970 - Totum

Abstract Truth

01. Jersey Thursday (3:47)
02. Coming Home Babe (6:32)
03. Oxford Town (4:09)
04. Fat Angel/ Work Song (10:16)
05. Summertime (5:40)
06. Scarborough Fair (3:44)
07. Parchman Farm/ Moaning (2:57)
08. Ain't Necessarily So/ Take Five (10:02)
09. Total Totum (Acid Raga) (5:10)

- Ken E Henson / guitar, sitar, vocals
- Robbie Pavid / percussion
- Brian Gibson / bass, vocals
- Sean Bergin / sax, flute

Abstract Truth (they shunned the prefix of "the" because they didn't want to sound dogmatic) was the brainchild of one Kenneth Edward Henson (dubbed Ken E Henson by David Marks).

The band Abstract Truth existed only for a very short time, but it was a time of super-creativity. They exploded on to the Durban music scene early in 1969, released 2 studio albums during 1970 (as well as a compilation in the same year!) and, after numerous line-up changes, imploded in 1971.

Henson had been the guitarist in a band called the Leeman Ltd, which had formed in Durban in 1965. In 1966 he and the enigmatic Ramsay MacKay got together with ex-Navarones members Colin Pratley and Nic Martens to create Freedom's Children, arguably South Africa's greatest rock band. Clive Calder, who signed Abstract Truth to EMI in 1970, said recently that Freedom's Children in his opinion "was then and probably still is today (over 30 years later) the only SA rock group that, given the right circumstances in the right geographical location, could have become an internationally successful rock band just by being themselves and doing what they did."

Henson was involved in the early single releases by Freedom's Children, which were unbelievably credited to "Fleadom's Children" because the government of the time considered the word "Freedom" as unacceptable! Henson then left Freedom's Children to join The Bats for a six-week sojourn.

In 1969 Henson and sax-player Sean Bergin were in a jazz group called The Sounds. Henson says, "In February 1969 I was approached by the owner of a local hotel. He had heard that I played the sitar and asked if I could get together an exotic/Eastern-sounding outfit to back a belly dancer in the hotel's disco/pub." The pub was called "Totum" and was situated at the Palm Beach Hotel in Durban's Gillespie Street.

Robbie Pavid, who had played drums for The Mods in 1967, remembers: "[The club owner] wanted a backing band for a belly dance act that would attract customers to his cocktail hour. Ken got hold of Brian Gibson who would play bass, formerly from the British group the 004's, Sean Bergin who would play flute and sax, myself on percussion, who was with the band The Third Eye, and Ken on lead guitar and sitar. I was playing in The Third Eye at the same time as Abstract Truth (whose gig at "Totum" was a 5 to 7 cocktail hour gig) and would then rush off to The Third Eye gig.... ahh, what you can do when you are young!!!!"

A quote from a 1969 poster sums it up: "swing to Abstract Truth every night at Totum in the Palm Beach Hotel from five o'clock to seven."

"To fill out the evening after the belly dancer had done her thing," recalls Henson, "we started playing a hybrid of jazz standards, folk/rock and Eastern-type jams. We soon replaced the main attraction and the belly dancer was no more."

"The music seemed to connect and flow from the very first night," says Pavid, "so the belly dancer was duly dismissed and the band employed to continue in the very different style that evolved. Most evenings were packed out with young people eager to listen and experience the free form of sounds that flowed from the long improvised songs."

Reporter Carl Coleman described their sound in a news article at the time as "totally unlike any other young group around Durban. They are probably the most advanced group in the country. Their music is exotic, progressive, and not commercial."

"I suppose we're something new musically", said Henson in the same article. "Basically our sound is free-form music - we use the melody line, but improvise on solos. It's really a fusion of blues, folk, jazz and Eastern music."

Henson's self-taught playing of the traditional Indian stringed instrument, the sitar, further enhanced the Eastern feel. "He plays this immensely difficult instrument with comparative ease", said Coleman.

Brian Gibson came from Wales where he had started in cabaret. "I was into pop for two years then came to South Africa with a group known as the 004's".

Future Bats guitarist Pete Clifford was also in the 004's and the band released a few singles and an album titled 'It's Alright' in the mid-60's. On the b-side of one of their singles was a version of boogie-woogie pianist Mose Allison's 'Parchman Farm', which was later reworked by Abstract Truth and released on the 'Totum' album. This is not the same as Bukka White's 'Parchman Farm Blues', which was recorded in 1937, though it does cover a similar theme.

The album 'Totum' was recorded in Johannesburg over a single weekend using a 4-track machine. The album was released in early 1970. "According to today's standards it's pretty rough," says Henson, "but I guess it was an honest interpretation of what we were doing."

In another newspaper review Coleman had this say about the release of Abstract Truth's debut album: "Sean, Brian, Robbie and Ken have lifted South African pop from the syrupy blare of bubblegum music to new heights of progressive pop. What an achievement!"

The Freak Emporium online store has this brief review of 'Totum' on their website: "Excellent early '70s melodic wistful freak rock blends with African sounds featuring assorted instruments: keyboards, flutes, electric guitars, saxophone, percussion, etc. A refreshing approach."

Most of 'Totum' consists of unusual reworkings of jazz, folk and blues songs. The only band composition is the sitar-drenched 'Total Totum/Acid Raga'. Donovan, Dylan, Gershwin, Simon and Garfunkel and others all get given the special Abstract Truth treatment that is reminiscent of early King Crimson in places.

3rd Ear Music had been involved with Abstract Truth from the beginning and mainman David Marks remembers that he had driven down to Cape Town to fetch Sean Bergin and George Wolfaardt to join a new Abstract Truth line-up. "Sean had been in the original band from mid-1969, but had returned to the Cape. Robbie Hahn had taken over - in what seemed to be a loose manager/friend's role for Abstract Truth (before Big B Brian Pretorius was appointed manager.)" says Marks on the 3rd Ear Music website.

Brian Gibson left the band to go solo and then became a well-known gospel preacher. Gibson recorded a gospel album in 1981 entitled 'Special Agent', which was released on the Revelation label, distributed by WEA Records and co-produced by Hawk's Dave Ornellas.

"The music of Abstract Truth was quite unique at the time as the line-up was totally different to what was generally happening," remembers Robbie Pavid. "For me it was one of the best and most rewarding times of musical exploration and satisfaction. Playing with Ken especially was rewarding as we seemed to connect and go places musically." Pavid then left Abstract Truth to devote his full attention to The Third Eye with Dawn and Ronnie Selby and they released three prog-rock albums between 1969 and 1970, but that's another story.

David Marks takes up the story again: "Brian [Finch] and I wanted to get our musician friends Mike Dickman (acoustic guitar and vocals) and Pete Measroch (piano and vocals) - two born-and-bred Northern Suburbs Johannesburgers - down to stun Durban."

"I'd heard George [Wolfaardt] playing with a three-piece Jimi Hendrix look-alike outfit in Cape Town [Elephant with Richard Black and Savvy Grande]," said Mike Dickman in July 2001, "and so, when Dave Marks happened to be going down there for some reason or another, I said to him: 'Look - there's this guy called George who plays the bass there. If you come across him, tell him we need him here...' Oddly enough he did, and in the meanwhile we'd contacted Sean, so - in a single weekend - the band expanded. The band shifted quite rapidly into a fairly Zappaesque mode, which wasn't where I was headed, so I left, probably stupidly..."

"Mike Dickman couldn't handle Durban," says Marks, "he stayed for a gig or two and then went missing to re-surface in the Golden City back to his solo and wandering ways. Mike emigrated to France in 1985 - with French wife Vera - still playing guitar and translating Buddhist verse into French and English."

A number of other musicians have played live as part of the ever-changing Abstract Truth line-up (Henson being the only stable factor) including Ian Bell, Eric Dorr, Harry Poulos, Ramsay MacKay and Brian Alderson. In late 1970, however, the line-up that recorded the superb 'Silver Trees' album was Ken E Henson (guitar, vocals), Peter Measroch (keyboards, flutes, vocals), Sean Bergin (flutes, sax) and George Wolfaardt (bass, flutes, drums).

Music collector and Abstract Truth fan John Samson wrote in the SA Rock Digest e-mag in 2002: "This is somewhat psychedelic prog that is full of swirling organ, steady rhythmic bass and loads of flute. In fact 3 of the 4 members of the group are credited as playing flute and it this that gives the album a lightness to it. Also of note is that there is only one song over the 4 minute mark, an unusual trait in a prog-rock album. The long song is the title track that features some awesome guitar from Ken E Henson and intricate organ playing from Peter Measroch."

"Another interesting touch," continues Samson, "is the African jive sound on the opening track 'Pollution' and the harpsichord on 'Moving Away', the former placing the album in Africa, the latter placing the album in Medieval Europe, both giving the album a sense of timelessness and universal appeal. It's this wonderful brew of psychedelic, rock, jazz, classical, blues, funk and jive that makes this a special album that should be sought out, and with the wind instruments playing a major role on the album, this could make a really good (Retro) Fresh Flute Salad."

"'Silver Trees' was an attempt to record our more structured, self-penned songs," remembers Henson, "to make us a bit more accessible to the record company/record-buying public." Unlike 'Totum', 'Silver Trees' features no cover versions and all the tracks were composed by various members of the band. The title track was co-composed by Mike Dickman, who had already left by the time this recording was laid down.

Peter Measroch has some interesting memories about the making of the album cover for 'Silver Trees': "The story behind that fuzzy looking cover is that the photo was shot by a Swiss photographer who was in South Africa for a while, Teak Glauser, I believe. Teak had been part of the group that had looked after Timothy Leary in Switzerland while he was on the run at one point apparently.

Anyway, he had come up with a photo technique where on a colour photo everything would appear normal except for objects that moved - these would get a rainbow aura around them, really trippy stuff. So the album cover was shot making sure that we all moved at the critical moment. EMI however refused to spring for a colour photo so it ended up just looking blurred in black and white. Oh well ... the good ol' bad ol' days..."

Shortly after 'Silver Trees', EMI compiled an album called 'Cool Sounds For Heads' which featured tracks off both the 'Totum' and 'Silver Trees' albums and also included a previously unreleased track, 'My Back Feels Light/What Can You Say', which was probably an out-take from the 'Silver Trees' sessions.

The 'History Of Contemporary Music Of South Africa' by Garth Chilvers and Tom Jasiukowicz, published in 1994, has this to say: "Abstract Truth produced 'head-music' (i.e. inventive, mind-stimulating music) and were one of the most progressive groups in South Africa. Unfortunately not too many other heads were into their music and so, a group which could have gone on to better things broke up in 1971."