Sunday, February 19, 2006

Hi everybody - I'm posting a day early, but I have a lot to do tomorrow, so let's get on with it! Lotsa good stuff this week, I hope.

Wind - Seasons (1971)

While not particularly krautrock-y, Wind's first album is still a great example of early 70's German progressive rock. At times they sound kind of like a more progressive Deep Purple, the quiter passages reminding of early King Crimson or Pink Floyd. This really is an album with mood swings; thundering, aggressive and powerful, atmospheric, dreamy and melancholic, sometimes within the same song. The most progressive track here is without a doubt the 16-minute "Red Morningbird". The track consists of long, dreamy and atmospheric parts (stuffed with bird-sounds and a spaghetti western harmonica) that get relieved by brutal and powerful heavy-progressive parts. "Dear Little Friend" is on the other hand a pure hard rock track that sounds like Deep Purple at their roughest and most aggressive. A classic of vintage underground prog.

Download

Ikarus - Ikarus (1971)

An obscure but decent one-shot from Germany. Ikarus played progressive rock that sometimes was in the vein of Van Der Graaf Generator. The album opens with the 15-minute "Eclipse". Good and very powerful riffs and themes, but as many other German bands, the vocals could have been better. The sound is dominated by organ, flute, piano, saxophone and guitar. On some parts the band also used some real strings instead of mellotron. "Mesentery" is a great track, and the vocals are far better here than on the first track. "The Raven" is based on a poem by Edgar Allan Poe, and musically this is the most complex and experimental track on the album. The energetic saxophone parts will appeal to any fan of Van Der Graaf Generator. The last track, "Early Bell's Voice", is perhaps the best. It consists mostly of wonderful instrumental parts, and the saxophone playing here sometimes reminds me of Catapilla. The track has a perfect early 70's feel to it, just as the rest of the album. The music should appeal to all fans of 70's prog. (vintageprog.com)

Download

Nektar - A Tab In The Ocean (1972)

The sidelong title-track has an atmosphere that suits both the title and the cover of the album very well. The production of this track is also quite interesting. It sounds like it's recorded in a big room or hall where Nektar plays in one end of the room and the recording-equipment is placed in the other end, almost giving the track a live feeling. The second side features some of their most memorable riffs. First you have "Desolation Valley" with its completely genius and striking build-up where very quiet and atmospheric vocal-parts builds up to an extremely powerful riff. The other classic here is the Mellotron-driven "King of Twilight" that was later covered by Iron Maiden in the 80's!! "Cryin' in the Dark" is a more standard hard-rock track, but still very good. Nektar always tried something new with each album and they managed to give it their own distinctive sound and signature no matter what progressive rock style they played. In that sense, "A Tab in the Ocean" was probably their heavy-progressive album and
it's a classic of the genre. (vintageprog.com)

Download

Epsilon - Epsilon (1971)

German underground-prog on the same label as Nektar, and their debut-album does sometimes remind you of a bluesier version of Nektar. Just listen to the opening track "Two-2-II" and you'll hear some of the same sound and atmosphere as in Nektar, but with a more bluesy touch. It's quite enjoyable with lots of good organ and piano-work from their keyboard-player Walter Ortel. "2-Four-4" has soulful vocals, complex organ-parts and even some very baroque-influenced parts. "Everyday's Pain" is a straightforward rocker, not progressive at all but man how rough and cool it sounds! This is a song to play loud. "Before" is an instrumental with some slight jazz-influences, very 70's and with some word-less vocals. The album also includes an attempt at a progressive version of Rolling Stone's classic "Paint it Black" but the result is not all that successful even if it includes lots of complex organ work. "Between Midnight" is a melodic and atmospheric track while "Hurry Up" is just a straightforward boogie-rocker and the least interesting moment here. Not the greatest album ever, but fans of the German underground scene will enjoy this.

Download

Cornucopia - Full Horn (1973)

Cornucopia stood for fantasy, originality and variety. On their only album, "Full Horn", recorded in 1973, Cornucopia played an eccentric fusion rock that was as convincing in the 20-minute suite "Day Of A Daydreambeliever" as in the compact three-minute rock song "Morning Sun". Cornucopia cleverly avoided being too predictable and added their unique, intellectual style to the slowly growing German rock evolution. Responsible for their style was producer Jochen Peterson, a former member of "Ikarus".

The septet met 1972 in Hamburg and consisted of Wolfgang Kause (voc), Wolfgang Bartl (b), Christoph Hardwig (key, g), Wolfgang Gaudes (dr), Kai Hendrik Motler (g), Harry Koch (perc, effects) and Rudy Holzhauer (perc). The "lyrics are worth paying attention to and they have a richness of musical ideas" (Sounds). These ideas mainly sprang from Christoph Hardwig's mind and were brought to perfection by the entire team.

Even in the early stages of the developing German rock scene, Cornucopia embodied the principle of a democratic band and were only marginally influenced by Anglo-American institutions like "Vanilla Fudge" and "Genesis".

"Full Horn" remained Cornucopia's only album. Why the Hamburg band never was as successful as they would have deserved remains open to speculation. One of the reasons for their failure, perhaps, is that Cornucopia did not do enough for their image and had problems accepting the rules of the business. The band insisted on their liberties and only reluctantly fulfilled their promotion duties. They had hoped to get a lot of recognition for "Full Horn", but when it failed to materialise, Cornucopia were so disillusioned that in 1974 they gave up. (alexgitlin.com)

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Gypsy - Gypsy (1970)

Gypsy's first release originally was a double album, but total time is only about 66 minutes. This is a unique album, making their style hard to pinpoint because you can hear elements of jazz, progressive rock and pop throughout. Each tune takes on a life and style of it's own. I guess that their creative juices were flowing and they wanted to get everything they could onto a record. I would say that their strength would be their singing harmonies. They use these harmonies quite a bit throughout the album while blending the use of keyboards, piano and guitars throughout their songs. Some tunes are slow, some start slow and build, some rock and some are a combination of all of these styles (the lengthy tunes). They really use the keyboard quite a bit on the album. String instruments are also used. Many of the short songs are catchy when you put it in perspective. Overall a very interesting listen from a mostly forgotten American band.

Download

McChurch Soundroom - Delusion (1971)

McChurch Soundroom is yet another band from the early 70's German underground scene about which today nothing is known, not even the names of the band members. Heavy and bluesy underground progressive rock with lots of flute and organ. The closest comparison would probably be very early Jethro Tull. Anyway, the songwriting is good and the performance is energetic and rocking. All of the tracks here are good. The flute comes to the fore on the two- part instrumental "Trouble", while the title-track and "What are You Doin'" are good heavy-progressive tracks. "Dream of a Drummer" is a good and energetic jam, but it unfortunately also includes a drum-solo. But that's the only weak spot on this album (if you don't care for drum solos!) Probably not an album to everyone's taste, but the good, old and pure '70s feeling is great through the whole album.

EDIT: Got an e-mail from Bob with some info about the band-
"This info comes from the bass player Kurt Hafen

McChurch Soundroom was a Swiss Band from Basel
Sandy McChurch (Sandro Chiesa)....... Vocal, Flute
Heiner Althaus......Guitar
Alain Veltin............Organ
Kurt Hafen.............Bass
Nobbi Jud..............Drums
''Soundroom'' was the Garage of Sandros' Parents
The Lyrics were original from Sandy, Marcel Schwaar did just go
over them for Pilz Records"

Download

Guru Guru - UFO (1970)

Guru Guru's classic debut album has to be one of the definitive moments in the Krautrock chronology. It is a monster work, and one which severely assaults the consciousness with waves of desert scorched guitar lashes along with acid laced, enchantingly amorphous rhythmic pulsing. On first listen the album appears sloppy, disjointed, confused and almost incomprehensible. Further listens will reveal a well of focused, completely intentional creative drive that makes UFO one of Krautrock's most immense sonic statements. Open minded listeners, and fans of the kind of cosmic jamming that typify many of the other guitar oriented Krautrock bands, will no doubt adore the album. While lacking the up-tempo, driving fury of say, Ash Ra Tempel's debut, UFO finds Guru Guru creating hulking, downbeat walls of guitar drenched intensity. Like Black Sabbath on an orgasmic acid trip, the rhythm section shows little regard for set "beats", time signatures and the like, preferring to create bruising heaps of bass grooves and cymbal crashes, speeding up, slowing down and falling completely off the tracks as they see fit. Above this, guitarist Axel Genrich contributes layers of blistering guitar, guiding the band from climax to shivering cataclysm.

Once the initial shock wears off, UFO is actually a thoroughly enjoyable album, though among the more adventurous works in an already pretty "out there" musical climate. Indeed, I might even prefer subsequent albums like Hinten and, in particular, KanGuru on a purely aesthetic level, given their greater compositional cohesiveness and ability to retain a groove. Parts of the title track are a little too empty and cacophonous even for me. That said, UFO remains the band's biggest statement. Hell, how can one help but like an album with a song title like "Der LSD Marsch"?(Greg Northrup progweed.net)

Download

Nick Drake - Pink Moon (1972)

It's widely reported that by the time Nick Drake got around to recording his third and final album, Pink Moon, his already-precarious mental/emotional state had drastically deteriorated. In a deep depression, Drake recorded a brace of solo acoustic tunes, dropped the tape off unannounced at the label's office one day, and that was the last the world at large ever heard of Drake's music. The results of those solo sessions were as harrowing and stark as anything by Robert Johnson or Charley Patton. Enclosed in an inner world of psychological distress, Drake recorded Pink Moon's dispatches from a private hell that was simultaneously terrifying and beautiful. Both the lyrics and the melodic motifs are pared to the bone here, their simplicity making them all the more immediately striking. The most nakedly emotional and disturbing moment is probably "Parasite", a visceral-but-mysterious account of a disconsolate soul roaming through the world in search of succour, with Drake taking the starring role, ultimately offering, "take a look, you may see me in the dirt". This was the end of the road for Nick Drake in more ways than one, but just the beginning for the scores of songwriters subsequently inspired by his bleak-but-beautiful visions. (amazon.com)

Download

Various Artists - Jump 'n Jive

Been a long time since I posted a Garage Sale/Thrift Store/ Bargain Bin Find Of The Week! This is a collection of 15 tunes by 11 different artists of post World War II Jump Blues mostly. Remember a few years ago when that guy from the Stray Cats had a hit with "Jump Jive and Wail"? Well this has the original by Louis Prima with Sam Butera and the Witnesses. Other great tunes by the likes of Louis Jordan, Jay McShann, Nat King Cole, T-Bone Walker, Amos Milburn, Charles Brown and others. Best cut, for me, is "Illinois Blows The Blues" by Illinois Jacquet. A real fun CD.

Download

Alright! Don't forget the great blogs in the links section for some other fine tunes, and I'll see you next week.

50 Comments:

Blogger dweller said...

a fascinating mix of offerings as always,
cheers

3:39 PM, February 19, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey man,

Nice shares, them Mary McCaslin & Jim Ringer, as also Broselmaschine and Tom Rush albums. Thanks muchly.

cheers
Neil

5:42 PM, February 19, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi dweller, Hi Neil - thanks for the comments!!

6:38 PM, February 19, 2006  
Anonymous kpk said...

Excellent work , my friend
I appreciate

Thanks

1:09 AM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi,
i love the gene clark album, thank you!
any chance for more gene?

2:29 AM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great music!!!!!
Thank you very much!!!!
Especially for Nektar and Guru Guru

Greetings and best wishes to you

Frank

5:34 AM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi kpk - You're welcome.

Hi anomymous - maybe I'll have another folk week sometime.

Hi Frank - You're welcome.

7:30 AM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger giorgio said...

Thanks,great albums....

9:51 AM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Nick Drake is a little messed up... "Harvest Breed" is on there twice and "Ride" not at all...
(unless something is screwed up on my side but I don't think so)

10:22 AM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous loopy c said...

Nice job (once again), The Guru Guru and Nektar titles are missing links. I look forward to checking out the rest of the batch, anything with the words 'German', 'Underground', and 'Progressive' all in one sentence gets me excited ;-)

10:29 AM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous loopy c said...

btw, I was the guitarist in 'Gypsy'.



...but not this one ;-)

10:31 AM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi anonymous

"The Nick Drake is a little messed up... "Harvest Breed" is on there twice and "Ride" not at all...
(unless something is screwed up on my side but I don't think so)"

You're right I just tried it - gimme a bit to re-upload

11:50 AM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I dig your blog, chill attitude and excellent and concise descriptions of the albums...keep up the good work and thanks much!

1:19 PM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hey thanks anonymous!

1:38 PM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger Alex L. said...

Wow, fantastic entry! This blog is great. Can't wait to hear Guru Guru.

5:02 PM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger EndlessMike said...

Nice post as usual. Some stuff I know and dig, and some stuff I've want to check out. Thanks!

6:31 PM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Thanks, alex!

Hi Endless Mike - I just picked up "Beat, Beat, Beatsville" from your blog - what a hoot, thanks!!

6:57 PM, February 20, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

used to have "Gypsy" on vinyl - before i flat wore it out. What a great record ... it just flowed track to track, side to side ... can't wait to hear it again. This was the best album they ever did, in my way of thinking, and i used to have 2 or 3 others, but never played them much. Great blog... LOVEd the folk posts you did last week, but also appreciate the prog side you offer. take care and stay warm..

7:53 PM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Thanks, anonymous!

6:50 AM, February 21, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

just to say hi and thanks for the work you're doing! don't know what the plague is lurching through the blog space, but sites are keeping shutting down :_-(
is there any thing that we (the visiting ones ;-) ) can do to keep the jewels alive for longer time????
thanks garcolga!

9:24 AM, February 21, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

just trying to circulate this info - chrisgoesrock has pulled his site so we've archived his links:

chriswentrock.blogspot.com

10:38 AM, February 21, 2006  
Anonymous loopy c said...

's there any thing that we (the visiting ones ;-) ) can do to keep the jewels alive for longer time????'

As I understand it, he was on a 'sicklist' but was now going back to work and did not have time to blog? Why you would take down the blog beats me, it must have taken an enormous amount of effort to rip and scan all his posts. To just kill the whole thing in a matter of 24 hours? Oh well, jut goes to show how ethereal it all is.

Anyway, no plagues, just personal choices ;-)

5:03 PM, February 21, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi anonymous, thanks.

Hi anonymous2, great idea, archiving his posts like that.

Hi loopy c. The whole thing seems like a fit of pique, like someone commented on his blog yesterday, there was no real need to delete the posts. He probably felt unappreciated, wondering why he was spending all that time maintaining a blog when so few people bothered to even say a simple word of thanks.

7:25 PM, February 21, 2006  
Anonymous loopy c said...

Hey gacrolga, yeah I know he was somewhat concerned over the lack of comments, but when he expressed that, a whole slew of posts apologized for this and promised to make more of an effort in the future (including myself!) which he seemed happy about, problem was the sheer quantity!!! I only discovered him a few weeks ago and he was posting sometimes six or seven albums a day! (at least it seemed like it). It takes time to digest this stuff, especially if you are already working to get through your tried and true favorite blogs like '8 Days' is to me. Given that I listen to many kinds of music and generally in 'themes', it might be awhile before I actually sit down and listen to a complete album of privately pressed chilean acid blues. But I will eventually! Hell, I missed the whole thing yesterday because I was listening to among other things your Nektar and Guru Guru albums! (outstanding btw)

Anyway, as I said about hansZUNblog, you guys put a lot of time and effort into these things, if for any reason it isn't fun (or practical) anymore it's our loss but I/we appreciate the time we have with your collections and selections and just hope it lasts as long as it can ;-)

8:04 PM, February 21, 2006  
Anonymous Gary said...

Thanks for the McChurch Soundroom tracks, superb stuff and thanks for all your hard work in general. Accidently typed in 8daysinapril.blogpsot.com earlier thought you maybe had a overnight vision of madness of some sort !

7:20 AM, February 22, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you have "Kan Guru"?
Will you post it in the future?
Thanks for your blog.

1:52 PM, February 22, 2006  
Anonymous saatuk said...

Thanks much for all the good stuff - especially the Love Sculpture. I was the guy who asked for some, and greatly appreciate it (and amy more that may come :). What a great place!

4:07 PM, February 22, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well... sorry i'm a week late with the posted stuff - but it is almost impossible to catch you :-)
thanks a lot for magma (i almost forgot about them - it was so long ago...) and had very nice acquaintance with c.a.!
and for those interested in:
"Wednesday, February 22, 2006
To be continued....
# posted by ChrisGoesRock @ 8:20 AM"
got work to do - love sculp. sounds promising from the info... have to try it
take care garloga

5:34 PM, February 22, 2006  
Anonymous loopy c said...

Anonymous said..."Wednesday, February 22, 2006
To be continued....
# posted by ChrisGoesRock @ 8:20 AM"

Never a dull day in blog town anymore (gee, might be a song title in there, maybe I should write a tune for a chilean acid blues private press release ;-)). Hope that means Chris is feeling better about his great contributions to the online community of musical adventurers. Thanks for the 'heads' up.

11:01 PM, February 22, 2006  
Blogger Eddie Riff said...

Thanks for the great stuff! Glad to hear many albums I'd forgotten and discover some I didn't know.

9:46 AM, February 23, 2006  
Blogger CGH Tompkins said...

Thanks for the music man, aah, and take a look to my blogg:
http://sonidosdeverdad.blogspot.com/
there's a lot of progressive to download there

5:14 PM, February 23, 2006  
Blogger The Wino said...

The Cornucopia - Full Horn (1973) recording is killer. Nice worx and a excellent lay down in engeniring. It's one of those recording that is a pleasure to listen to the whole album.

thanx

6:08 AM, February 24, 2006  
Anonymous Hymn43 said...

Thanks for all albums !!!
I'm tryin to follow this kinda steps, visit my blog:

http://6070rock.blogspot.com/

HARD & HEAVY TUNES FOR ALL

3:08 PM, February 25, 2006  
Blogger giorgio said...

I send you on mail some ex yu prog album links,i hope that like you...
Thanks,Doctor

3:41 AM, February 26, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi giorgio
is there any smak, yu grupa, leb & sol?

8:35 AM, February 26, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi gary - thanks and you're welcome!

Hi anonymous - sorry, I don't have Kan-Guru.

Hi saatuk - you're welcome.

Hi anonymous - you're welcome for the Magma!

Hi eddie riff - you're welcome! Can't believe you have that Spider John & Willie Murphy album on your blog. Nice.

Hi CGH Tompkins - you're welcome & nice blog!

Hi wino - thanks for the input, that Cornucopia album is real nice.

Hi hymn43 - you're welcome and nice blog too!

Hi giorgio - thanks for the links!

6:14 PM, February 26, 2006  
Blogger CGH Tompkins said...

thanks for you comment, and for the add to youre links, is great find people who like the good music!!

8:12 PM, February 26, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks for your blog
i'm late but in the archive i discover some magical album that i was looking for like brainticket, out of focus and this week magma
thanks!!!!

10:15 AM, February 27, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thank for your blog once again
i know i wrote no many comments but when i see your prog and psych knowledge i must ask you if you have arzachel or hatfield and the north album cos' it's quite difficult to find this music
thanks!!

10:30 AM, February 27, 2006  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi anonymous I - you're welcome!

Hi anonymous II - Check this evening's post for Arzachel.

12:49 PM, February 27, 2006  
Anonymous steveb said...

Thanks for Love Sculpture's Blues Helping! I had it on LP, but leant it and a bunch of other albums to a guy and he left town with them. :-(

7:28 PM, February 27, 2006  
Blogger Koen said...

Just downloaded Various Artists - Jump 'n Jive, excellent collection. Also many thanx for the scans of the sleeve info.

8:11 PM, February 27, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

guru guru CD is just absolutely beautiful, thanks a lot for sharing!

12:15 PM, March 05, 2006  
Anonymous Ron Gilders said...

Wonderful Sounds! This is about as close as I'm gonna get to a time machine and be able to check out all these cool bands. Awesome!! Your site has rocketed to the top of my 'bookmarks' listing.

10:53 PM, April 11, 2006  
Anonymous Sugarat said...

What a great collection of music!!!

Say, the jump_jive.part1.rar has been deleted by RapidShare. Any chance of reposting it? If you can't, I understand. Thanks for all of the rest!

2:56 PM, April 12, 2006  
Blogger julioxo said...

Many thanks mate

10:43 PM, June 05, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

cornucopia is really good! i never heard of these guys and really isn't that the whole idea of a music blog - hype the stuff that nobody else is hyping. its a tad sinister, the singer takes a bit getting used but by the 3rd listen i really began to dig his voice.
patt zeuhl, part led zeppelin, part kitchen sink.

11:28 PM, January 26, 2007  
Blogger GarColga said...

Hi anonymous - yeah that Cornucopia is good! Thanks for the feedback.

4:44 AM, January 27, 2007  
Anonymous pereira said...

Many thanks for the I Drive album. It's a very rare LP and I liked it a lot. The first song "Down, down, down" is a truly heavy metal monster well ahead of its time (in fact the singer sounds to me like James Hetfield). The rest of the tracks are quite good as well, examples of a kind of hard rock not very common in the first part of the 70's.
Thanks for sharing this awesome music.

11:56 PM, July 04, 2007  
Anonymous Alex B said...

Your blog is the best to discover great, freak and amazing krautrock and diferent kinds of prog. Congratulations and thanks a lot for it! I would like to coment Epsilon ( good bluesy hard-prog. Between Midnight is a beautiful and "night-like" song!), Parzival ( marvelous group, as good and powerful as Gryphon) and Kalacakra, one of the most strange and interesting kraut soudns that I ever heard. Hapiness and thanks again!

10:57 PM, July 18, 2007  

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