Tuesday, May 14, 2013
A chromatic downgoing arpeggiated riff tears the still air into shreds on "Light Speed" leading into the stellar clusters of the "milkyway" on the second track of side a ... absolutely a one-two punch worth the price of admission to this incredible ultra-unknown secret and long-lost set of music from Miami, Fla.
There are considerable similarities to the "Mr. Euphoria" record I posted some time ago, and if you follow this blog you'll recall Isabelbc posted their first record here ("Night Ride") about a year ago. So I'll dedicate this newly-ripped version of the second record to Isabel, wherever she may be. Oddly enough the guys reverted to an all-instrumental album here but they brought all the power in the book to play here. On the back, the following note: "This album was a first take live recording with no over-dubbing." Pretty cool!
The album was written by the lead guitarist whose name is Bob Wamnes ("the Wam" as he is called on the back cover) perfect in his mustachio and tuxedo. His band is rounded out with Ed Mallett on drums and wind chimes, Tom McCance on bass and Jeff Powers on lead guitar as well. I'm guessing these guys were high school pals who started a band, I wonder where they are now? I sure would love to hear from the brilliant Bob Wamnes, truly a lost artistic genius in the US prog sphere as I think Tom would agree. Just listen again to those big fat huge guitar chords on Light Speed and the way drummer Ed machetes his way through the jungle of power cables to the end to clear the way for the next track.
Truly a lost treasure of the late American guitar-based progressive style. That late, great, style.
As samples I will post the aforementioned starter track:
And the classic jazzy guitar sound of "New York New York" which really should have been a radio hit but I'm pretty sure wasn't. What I find fascinating in this track is that Bob Wamnes keeps changing it up instead of a long solo or ad hoc gratuitous middle portion, we get passage after passage of well-crafted music with odd chord changes and melodies and ideas. Truly this one track is a mine of musical ideas, always changing and creative, until that beautiful f major/f minor riff closes out the song again. Genius!
at 11:13 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, May 10, 2013
Here as requested: despite the title of the record this is definitely straightforward modal jazz by Fred and the jazz inspiration orchestra. Good record, you will notice it starts with the track "Berlin" which also started off the previous, eponymous album-- perhaps that one piece warranted a whole album named after it. His style on the flugelhorn as usual is really warm and gorgeous and highly enjoyable. The last track on the first side-- Kinetic Noise-- really shows off his supernal abilities. Incidentally, this is much better than the average Fred Rabold album.
Note that the song called "Waltz for Christin" is not a typo perhaps deserving a 'sic' after that name as spelled-- perhaps if I was in a more bitter mood. But since it's a gorgeous song, and the arrival hereabouts of a warm spring has provided a timely boost to my spirits and libido, I will pass it by with a smile on my face and lap. And who wouldn't have a spring in their step and neighbourhood?
Sample track the wonderfully dissonant Child Song, B2, unfortunately all too short (like my 2 smiles):
at 10:04 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, April 26, 2013
This is obviously the last from this group we needed to hear and I dedicate it to all 'children of the seventies'.
I remember well when I purchased it some years back in West Berlin at the Musiksammlerschallplattenrekordsboutique because when I attempted to send it to my friend Franz in East Berlin at the notorious Brandenburg gate I was held up an unusually long time at german customs by a very rule-bound military/customs officer:
"You say this is not jazz, not fusion, not rock? it is somewhere in between? then please sir how do you expect me to fill out this customs form? Do you not see this form, with--" (here he counted the number of spaces available to him) "-- ten possible letter entries, in accordance with the number of human fingers anatomically correct? you must provide me with a specific style, in order to list it as such. Please, you do understand these formalities, sir, is it -- Herr Stefan?"
I laughed perhaps awkwardly with my hands deep in my pockets mining for debris for the mutual satisfaction of my thumbs but persisted,
"I do indeed maintain, good sir customs officer, that the style is somewhere in between those which you have mentioned, just as your rifle is somewhere between your right and left testicles."
"I shall ask you to inform me of your language of preference as this seems to be a not inconsiderable part of the problem. Would you prefer we converse in English or German as I am fluent in both of these kingly languages having had an american vater (whose name I regret to inform you was Joe) und eine deutsches mutterlein, Heidi."
"Please customs sir, I prefer German-- the language of Hermann Hesse und David Hasselhof. Bitte sehr."
"Then you shall explain to me the manner of this record, for I do not understand it-- is this perhaps a pornographic item you are attempting to export? " And he set aside his severe circular glasses on the shiny table and put his hands into a triangular shape that to me was quite isosceles both in shape and in emotional content.
"Pornography? bitte, can you please examine the front photograph. These individuals are quite ugly all. In fact they are jazz musicians. Is this even a possible actuality in your opinion good sir? I mean, yes there is one attractive female upon the cover who probably recorded the album naked in the studio, and thereafter, of course, all the males had intercourse with her one at a time, probably some simultaneously in various positions enabling multiple openings entered, but surely you agree with me, this was normal for recording artists at this time this being neither pornographic nor unusual?"
For many long minutes he studied the photo on the cover during which period, ticked away slowly by the cuckoo clock with fake nestlings and tiny chastity belt for birds hung on the wall, I subtly mopped the sweat from my brow with the Hustler magazine I had carried in my back pocket. Finally I spoke up, attempting to resolve the issue once and for all:
"SIR!! this is progressive jazz-rock fusion! it is a style all of its own, one of its kind, like the alsatian sauerkraut with knackwurst you know so well made from your own mother's eczematous hands and the sweat of her armpits! You shall let me depart at once and cease this insidious and unnecessary interrogation!!!!" --however I believe I spoke too loudly for not only did this annoying individual stand up, but many of the neighbouring officers stood suddenly and reached for their rifles.
"You shall lower your voice before your hominid superiors!"
At this point my friend Franz, who in point of fact lived but two blocks away in E. Berlin (but across the wall) overheard us yelling as he was strolling the Spitzbergenstrasse, and exclaimed,
"Ah but dear Herr Stefan!! I urge you, to simply throw in the manner of a projectile, the vinyl record, as I shall catch it with utter facility right here where I stand! !"
"Dearest Franz, it is you! but do you not think the guards shall destroy it in chronic machine gun fire, which shall not add a pleasant dimension to the music of Herr Frederic Rabold? (albeit there will be some who will enjoy it highly thus disfigured or perhaps not even notice a difference)"
"we merely have to indicate to the guards it is a US government-made UFO, and they shall leave it in peace to cross the wall!"
"Excellent idea! or I shall simply state it is part of Yuri Gargarin's superego-protection device falling back to earth!"
At this my dear customs officer became impatient and stamped his boot upon the ground, striking a small bug in the process, CIA-planted of course:
"Enough of your womanly chatter! it will take two weeks to transmit this record over to the other side-- it is worth how much you said, 40 marks?"
"Yes, 40 marks."
"Then you must pay german duties of 518 marks for the export."
"Ha ha! dear sir, you may easily observe my friend is but 20 yards away from us, please, turn around and see!"
"I shall not turn and play your childish games! At this time I do not desire anal penetration sir, for it is too soon!! "
... needless to say I am still standing there at the Brandenburg Gate to this day holding my record and arguing with the german customs officer, even though now the gate is gone, the wall is dismantled, and my record has melted in the acid rain ... .... ach, deutsches burokratie!
at 11:19 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Monday, April 22, 2013
A remarkable album coming from the totally unprogressive UK of 1982, hardly a year to expect huge imaginative sounds! (Although note the last song "I wanna be a punk"-- clearly ironic coming from these progsters way behind the times ... but what about us, are we way behind or way ahead?) I won't get into nostalgic reminiscences of M. Thatcher, the iron lady-- may she rust in peace, as the newspaper said.
The music here is perhaps closest to Mike Oldfield's classic material but in this record tracks have been cut into shorter snippets for easier digestion. Unlike Oldfield there is some pretty progressive playing with unusual chord changes, instrumentation, etc., where Mike perhaps never went past the baroque level of chordal understanding, this album progresses past the nineteenth century in advancement, comparable to Maxwell's equations perhaps to oldfieldian newtonian dynamics, whereas a true progster like Gentle Giant has absorbed 20th century complexity like the schrodinger equation.
Anyways, moving on, all the tracks (all instrumental) are like the soundtrack to a nice little promenade through the famed british countryside of heathrows and moors and heathered downs and heathen townships albeit one not yet marred by acid rain (though this was about to become a big issue there) with ultraviolet light raining down from ozone depletion, etc., etc., etc.
A surprisingly rare record that hopefully we can keep secret amongst ourselves. I must as usual mention the striking beauty of the surreal cover.
The first track is quite exemplary, as perhaps is (infinite-dimensional) hilbert space for quantum field theory:
at 7:04 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Almost three years ago I presented to you osurec's wonderful find, Coalition - Mindsweepers from 1976. Their second and last album was very hard to find until someone unearthed it in a flea market for a couple of dollars of all places… (such is the survival of these masterpieces, analogous to Petronius' Satyricon surviving as a toilet paper roll's worth of pages through the middle ages…) It did cost me an arm and a leg to get my hands on the vinyl though, and now I'll present it to you publicly from my wheelchair after having finally resold the record at a huge loss.
Evidently the band went in a more commercial direction like so many others at this time, abandoning the classical music influences that made the former record such a progressive wonder. Now we have only straight ahead soul jazz with one attempt (to my mind quite successful) at forging a radio friendly hit (Thinking of You, sampled below).
Those who prefer fusion, progressive, or hard rock, should stay away, really this is just another astral jazz album. But on those terms alone, it's quite good. Note that, oddly enough, the back is the same as the front. Here more infos:
And stay tuned to our show, because coming in the next few weeks we'll hear more free jazz with vocal stylings (for ushaped and myself) as well as return to progressive treasures lost from the past and some more of that kraut hard rock I love so much, sprinkling in some records from the least favourite subgenre of prog, RIO… Also I want to revisit Alan Hawkshaw, the brilliant composer of library music, his "Contemporary Contrasts" was quite a popular post in this space…
at 3:14 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Oh to be a child again…
The older I get the less I dream, but nowadays I often have this recurring dream (in fact almost every week) which I remember I used to have as a child too.
In this dream I come upon a beautiful deep lake or flowing river with crystal-clear fresh waters in the middle of a forest, I look down, and I see it's full of big fat shiny fish, excitedly I run back to grab my fishing rod and hook up a worm, and within minutes I get a bite and start reeling in, overjoyed... Often in the dream my father is with me at my side with his fishing rod in his hand looking down and smiling at me...
Of course before I can hold the fish I wake up. Then I invariably think to myself in the sad blackness that I must take my children to a wild river or lake so they can experience this same thrill that I once felt, to step out into a world still rich with life.
But when I get up in the morning I look at them and realize they would never feel things the same way I did, because already they haven't grown up in the same world; where we collected toads in our backyard, butterflies at our school, caught catfish and bucketfulls of water beetles at the local pond... That world sadly is already gone, except in my dreams. Many years ago I went back to revisit that pond full of frogs near my childhood home that I've mentioned so often and to my eternal sadness saw it had been covered over with new suburban houses. Only one small part of it was still there, enclosed in a heavy duty high fence, it was padlocked with the red sign: "Biosphere preserve-- KEEP OUT!"
at 3:23 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, March 22, 2013
First off, note the beautiful cover art. Although it can be rotated by pi, I don't actually see an image coming out the other way, though this is perhaps my visual fallibility.
This was another discovery from the mighty osurec and it hails from 1982, 31 years ago. Why do I always harken back to those wonderful days of the eighties? Why do I always remember the great late Ronnie Reagan with his doll-like rosy crabapple cheeks and glistening black courtierly pompadour shaking his head rhythmically while intoning the words "the evil empire" and "the mad dog of the middle east" from his teleprompter-- which used to fool my scientist father who thought he as an actor had actually memorized his lines-- imagine his chagrin when I told him POTUS was simply reading not looking the viewer in the eye... For little did my dad know that at that time Ronnie couldn't even remember his own name or the B-movie actresses he had slept with, let alone a long-winded speech by Peggy Noonan-Safire or William Safire-Noonan, full of idiotic and ahistorical platitudes. But he was full of conviction, that same one that motored the McCarthy boat against communism to nowhere, that same certainty which in truth only true robots can achieve-- that the USSR must be destroyed at all costs, even with the creation of a star wars system of lasers in space that scientists told him from day 1 would never work. It didn't matter to him that it wouldn't work, what mattered were the words alone, and the words worked. To this day his words still work. If millions of humans died in the process, the game theory mathematicians in service of politics said, it was worth it for the survival of the rest of us. Too bad that game theory at that early point had not progressed to fully include cooperation as the optimal rational strategy-- too bad for us who don't understand game theory and were destined to die in those war games, right?
So I mean yeah, how can I not remember those crazy nuclear-holocaust-eighties with fondness?
After all, his magic religion of capitalism is still the spiritual altar to which we all pray. We pray for the god of capitalism to make us rich, to give us luxury cars, to let us win the lottery (every day I go to work I hear someone mention this)... We can grow our money like magic, if we just think the right thoughts. And the priests, the economists, still stick to the script, they don't believe there is any other way for us, they assure us of a future cornucopia of abundance for all, with perpetual exponential "expansion" of the economy, in a limitless infinite earth that will accomodate 10 billion, even 100 billion humans (cf. Julian Simon RIP). Now all bachelors can go on reality TV, become rich and famous, then have countless females to sleep with just like the heaven of Islam. All women can have plastic surgery to make themselves as desirable as their evolutionary imperative instructs them to be, with large breasts, white skin, large red lips. For a person to question our religion is heresy of course, they are laughed at in serious company, they are ostracized as childish or naive, they are talked down to as if stupid, they are universally ignored in any public forum. In this way are religions perpetuated through falsehood and irrationality until the day their foretold or unforetold apocalypse passes-- like when the Comet Hale-Bopp passed by without a doomsday and the believers were forced to commit suicide. Unfortunately our high priests the economists will not be immolating themselves when they are eventually shown to be wrong, they will simply stand in line for unemployment insurance and food stamps like everyone else, probably not even showing shame at their prior false promises or a full belly despite their financial wisdom.
And while I'm on the subject of doomsday (as usual!) let me mention that all those cruise missiles, the creepy nuclear-powered subs patrolling the oceans that never surface, the thousands of warheads that would kill us all 'thousands of times over' in a nuclear winter as they used to say, they are all still with us-- Reagan and his warring legacy of words that work can still destroy us totally if there does arise a world war three. Today it seems impossible, but what if there were worldwide famines and mass migrations for many years? What if the recent economic downturn extends and gets worse and never ends, for anyone anywhere? And how likely is it that these weapons will never be used, ever? This seems very low probability to me.
Sorry about the uploads not being tended to, but since Isabel disappeared so suddenly it has been difficult for the rest of us, her work was absolutely irreplaceable. I personally don't know what is the situation but I wish her all the best and miss her greatly, indeed, I hope dearly that she returns to help us out and cheer us up.
In fact if you're reading this, please send us a message!!
I include two fantastic tracks, the Indigo Sunset softer instrumental, and a hard-rocking guitar song that is virtually proto-alternative with punkish singing and incredible tritonal chord changes, nothing bluesy about it at all.
Track 6 (Tesnus Ogidni):
Track 8 (Gnostic Blues):
I wish Tom Hayes and cd reissue wishlist would feature this since I feel it should be priority 3 at least. There is a wonderful mix of hard, soft, instrumental, no fusion, but a lot of ingenious composition and some killer tracks. Reminds me a bit of Syn Cast the first Stone, but with a harder edge.
Why are these magnificent records so completely lost???
But this is our purpose here, to ressuscitate them and preserve them for posterity as the patrimony of our culture, when music reached its absolute apex of creation. Assuming those nuclear warheads don't rain down on us instead in some distant future.
at 9:26 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, March 15, 2013
Another 'discovery' of the mighty osurec from some time back-- behind whose shadows my shape of possessions continues to be dimly lit.
I've always been guilty of the sentimentalization of childhood and thus when I first heard the tracks from his rip I always meant to find the record to keep in collection for perpetuity. It was not easy to locate at a reasonable price oddly enough but finally I have it here to share. This is the second work from this group featuring singer Bobby Dorough whose laryngeal style I could see some people abhorring. The first ST album had much more free jazz to it as opposed to the composed, radio-friendly songs in the second. But here there's a good mix of fusion, blues, and jazzy meandering.
When I spend days with my two (three and five year old) children I see that in reality the overhyping of happy childhoods is a case of selective memory, because the negative emotions of frustration, anger, boredom, or impatience, are pretty intense, at least as much as the positive ones of excitement and joy. In fact in any given hour my preschoolers go through such a range of emotions it's like a year-long brazilian soap opera fast-forwarded at light speed: 300,000 miles of tragedy, comedy, restless wonders and pains in the space of one primetime slot complete with the requisite commercials for toys and taco bell burritos.
What I find though most endearing in them is the absolute, timeless social naivete. When we visit the local playground, unlike the adults who adhere to cliques and ignore all newcomers, the children make fast friends instantly and perfectly, one hi (or even dispensing with the greeting) and they are lifelong friends for the whole duration of the temporary … whilst the mothers keep to their high-school rut maintaining a fully anachronistic cool group now made up of overweight and exhausted stay at home 'soccer moms' apparently overjoyed at being able to ignore misfits like my wife and myself who unlike them are slim, educated, and artsy...
We can romanticize childhood to the ends of time but ultimately their way of living in the moment and not being aware of death, taxes, and the agony of sticking to those stratified social roles is something I could never approach without losing half my mind.
The only thing they have and I still would give anything for is not having to worry about growing old and dying.
"When children find someone soft and kind
they smile and glow and say 'hello'
When children play in their magic way
with time and space they travel anyplace
When children frown their world is upside down
don't matter right or wrong something don't belong
When children create they don't hesitate
when children create, they don't hesitate,
they don't see an end where their minds can bend
they don't see an end where their minds can be
Children of all ages, just might turn out to be sages…"
at 2:51 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Thursday, March 07, 2013
We've posted a number of genius German pianist J. Kuhn's works before and in fact completing his discography is not only desirable but quite tedious and expensive too. This one attracted me because the music was created for a NYC ballet, and I really love ballet music with its extremely emotional, airy, and flickering variety. In one track (To Be Continued) it appears someone is actually touching the strings (e.g. with a ruler) inside the grand piano that Kuhn is playing.
Here's a typical track, Modern Nature, the softest one:
And here one of the more experimental ones, Graphic:
at 6:01 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Saturday, February 23, 2013
I really love the cover of this record, which I'm pretty sure must be from a work by Gustave Doré, famous for his wood engravings. Here you can get an idea of what I mean: http://dore.artpassions.net/ The choice and the drama of the unseen hands attempting to kidnap the baby from the mother are so incredibly evocative. How often have I mentioned the importance of covers!
The music is very reminiscent to me of the Natdamperen material I posted so long ago now on this website, it could just as well be a fourth N. album, with fusiony jazz-jamming and raw laryngitis-like sax melodies. It even has the same lo-fi 4-track basement-recording sound to it. Most of the compositions are by the keyboardist, Ronald Buijk.
at 12:51 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, February 15, 2013
We've heard a lot of music in that time haven't we? A lot of great music, some amazing discoveries... a lot of crap too, necessarily. I wager that in those 3 years we heard more new music than 99.9 % of humans hear in their entire lifetimes. But of course we who do this and read this are not ordinary people-- for us music is our passion, our drug, our first love, the only taste of heaven we'll ever have on this earth (as I said before).
Here, the second track, "The Despirator" is utterly amazing. Both this and "Flower of Eternity" are just ne plus ultra hallmarks of the complex and well-thought-out euro-fusion style.
Those minor second guitar arpeggios in the former song, perhaps invented by mahavishnu John McLaughlin originally (?) just kill me every time. All compositions are by the guitarist Jan Tolf (he with the hooded monk's beard on the back).
Now prepare for The Despirator to run you over and leave you gasping:
at 11:28 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Another beautiful library album, a discovery from discobasso from growing bin.
Orchestral pieces often with a melancholy edge evoke a plushly verdant landscape, the irresistible earnestness so typical of this era in music almost could make one believe the earth was a garden of Eden, though one now deforested by diesel-powered caterpillar trucks for mining, logging, and clear-cutting to grow either palm oil (for your nutella sandwiches) or soybean for the export industry to go into the insatiable maw of the western world's frenzied desire for animal feed for hamburgers, biofuels to drive SUVs, and wood for cheap Ikea furniture destined for you Europeans and N. Americans… At least when we hear these songs we can remember there was a time when the planet (and our stereo) was pure and fresh and full of wildlife like frogs not yet decimated by chytrid fungus and fish not yet sickened by PCBs, and the woodland winds Fiddy and Sieben composed were not full of mercury particles from coal plants or nitrous oxides or CFCs designed to turn unprotected UV photons on caucasians into skyrocketing skin cancer statistics, nor could they truly have foreseen the 'continental sunset' they scored for the sonoton orchestra was the cultural sunset of your own western civilization designing its own gradual but certain demise in a plenitude of technocratic lassitude punctuated repeatedly with perpetually bored but impatient 'twitter feeds' along with instinctual overindulgence of every gluttonic form…
Anyways, it's a beautiful album!
at 8:47 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, February 01, 2013
Sometimes we fall in love with a record for no apparent reason, knowing it's not highly inventive or beautiful or impressive to the majority, like the Wolfgang Schmidt - Wolfhound I shared before in the past. Though it may seem average to you when you hear it, I don't want anyone to pass up the opportunity for this because it has some very wryly individual, interesting tracks, particularly the two prayers that close out each side.
As usual this was a discovery of the mighty osurec who first ripped this virtually unknown item some years back. Side a is written by Dean Rouch (not Rough as it sometimes appears), and side b by Michael Mayer; the two sound very similar though. Even the cover has a DIY charm to it, don't be surprised to hear it was Rouch who was responsible for the (exquisite?) drawing. I love the lyrics too, the highly priceless zeitgeist comment: "I don't want to die in a nuclear war" from the A2 song "You're a Bitch" is exemplary-- try as I might I can't figure out how the title and the nuclear war reference fit together-- and pay attention to what Mayer is saying in his "Pentagon Prayer," (track B4) -- it's just wonderful. (How it takes me back to those wonderful cold war days of Star Wars and SDI, ballistic intercontinental missiles, reaganomics and air traffic controller strikes, the 'evil empire', wall street masters of the universe and deregulation, and "it's morning again in America" -- which actually was devised years later as someone once corrected me -- doesn't matter, it's still clear by now that faint gloaming was really the last burst of energy at the end of a long day to which we now are turning in for a sleepless night.)
"When your peaceful nighttime silence explodes through a nuclear dawn
load the heart with errors and we can learn to sing along
and when the nuclear winds do come cold and your best friends are blowing away
perhaps if you can hold on to come and fight another day"
--from " Pentagon Prayer "
The competence of the musicians is without question, all instruments are played beautifully with a lot of layered textures involving synths and guitar runs and scales in the arrangements. Of course I'm not crazy about the silly Island song that starts off side b, nor the mandolin piece, but you couldn't expect a solid record from beginning to end at this late stage in the hunting game.
I will sample the most progressive tracks, the last song on side a which is a "power prayer," and the third song on side b, "Fly".
I would really love to hear from these guys to know what their thoughts are about this utterly unknown and lost private pressing, because I just adore it. No chance it will score priority 2 on the cd reissue wishlist but why can't we see more records like this rereleased for 20 dollars, so we don't have to hunt down the vinyl and pay an arm and a leg for it to some random person in an auction?
at 1:30 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Thursday, January 31, 2013
One really doesn't know what to expect with these unknown records. This is yet another find from the growing bin records store, that is, a find from discobasso. Not a well-known record as you can see here: http://rateyourmusic.com/artist/jost_band (well, after I post the rip you will slowly see people claiming it as their own). Nor is there even an entry for it on discogs:
http://www.discogs.com/artist/Jost+Band save for their appearance in the wonderful compilation, Nachwuchswettbewerb Pop '79 - Rock / Jazz, which featured great german artists Matter of Taste, Rozz, and Ex Ovo Pro. I think there's a copy still available in basso's store but those records go quickly-- hurry if you want to pick it up.
So what about the music? Setting aside the mildly ridiculous first song, I was excited at the hints of Zauberfinger with the adventurous but rock-based songwriting. Of course this is not quite as good as the Hans Raffert work, but it is strong and interesting to listen to. A couple of songs might even be the kind you play over and over again in the car on the long commute to work. When I heard the second song I had to stop for a second, did he really say "Doctor doctor prescribe me your daughter?" I will include it as a sample below, stay patient until the wonderful synths-draped ending in F sharp sustained. Also the ninth song "Die Show" is amazing in its odd chord changes-- unfortunately it is marred by a trinnie drums intro that I probably should have removed.
Pinkel mir in den mund:
at 1:41 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Monday, January 28, 2013
Is the progressive spirit cast off on this album as was true for so many artists at this time (e.g., Toto Blanke, Joachim Kuhn)? ...Kind of, but you be the judge. In general this strays away from the high octane fusion into a more mellow, synths-heavy brew of warm chemicals.
Btw all tracks were written by Graf except the last one, a trad. norwegian folk song, arranged by him.
I sample below the most progressive number, "Tender Stranger," with its interesting arpeggio modulations in and out of different keys. ECM-style bass (could almost be Eberhard Weber) passes in and out of the shadows of the spacey synths veiling the electric piano like an aurora borealis. Even more aurora appears on track A4, Open Mind, a blinding amount of it in fact, so pull out your sunglasses.
One big detraction, not only is side b short (under a quarter of an hour), but it's pretty uninteresting too in comparison to a.
A2: Tender Stranger:
at 12:43 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Friday, January 25, 2013
I will first quote from ashratom from his famed website where he featured well-nigh 2 years ago plus this little fusion one-off band, and when I read this I thought I must get a copy of this record. Well it only took 2 years to get the vinyl but finally patience is rewarded with rarities.
"As mentioned yesterday, we have a new patron of the CDRWL - The Alaskan Connection (no, it's not Sarah Palin). And here's his first submission. I wasn't familiar with it prior, not even on one of my many esoteric want lists. And of course guess who's involved? None other than Mr. Obscuria himself - J.P. Massiera.
This one starts off in the funky fusion style, but it's a head fake, something you can almost predict with Mr. Massiera. Within the album you'll find sweetly sung soft female vocals ala Cortex, indigenous islander music, a little Zeuhlish horns - flute and vocal piece, and even some straight jazz. For certain, all of that is fine and dandy, but it doesn't prepare you for the middle of the album with the lengthy West Indies tribal percussion and underground fuzz guitar soloing. This sequence elevates the album to a must listen experience, even it's not entirely consistent."Thereupon he gave it a priority 3.
Bass [Contrabass]– Bunny Brunel*
Bass, Vocals– A. Bonfils*
Choir– R. Ceccarelli
Drums– A. Ceccarelli*
Engineer [Sound Engineer]– Massiera J. Pierre*
Guitar– J. C. Chanavat*
Mixed By– Alain Tadie
Percussion– M. Delaporte*
Piano– F. Martin
Recording Supervisor– Claude Lemoine
Saxophone, Flute– J. David
Trombone– J. Costa (2)
Trumpet– R. Laily
Note the presence of A. Ceccarelli, who is all over fantastic fusion records from France. Bassist Bunny Brunel also made a great fusion record called Touch in the late seventies. If you love the french style of fusion to me this is absolutely a masterpiece, I sit back and hear the insane energy and creativity coming out the speakers and it takes me to paradise. With the breathy sweet female vocals (oddly enough I don't see a credit for the female vocalist inside), the bits of composed passages, I think you get everything you want in one record in one package here. My one complaint would be that it's quite short (being under half an hour) -- admittedly as was common for french albums.
Take a taste from track 2 with its absolutely anomalous but gorgeous modulations and changes:
" I'm stretching my soul to make it sound like something...." goes the bizarre commentary in the middle of the song.... dig it, man!!!
at 10:00 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
A beautiful and extremely poetic but difficult album of various artists dedicated to the subject of war, it covers the full range of german styles with electronic, minimalist, hard krautrock, experimental, gentle flute-ballads, all flowing together from beginning to the shattering end. Absolutely to me a masterpiece of progressive music at its finest, by the end it evokes a feeling similar to reading a hugely romantic and sprawling novel like something by Stendhal, or perhaps All Quiet on the Western Front.
So what about war (krieg) -- is the new current era of peace destined to last or will it shudder to a close when resource depletion, famines from climate change, etc., hit us really hard? I think I mentioned before Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker's monumental evidence-stuffed book "Better Angels of our Natures" wherein he discusses the actual stats in favour of declining violence both within states and between states, i.e. wars, and that evidence is compelling. Think about for ex. how casually bullying in schoolyards was treated as an issue even 10 - 20 years ago compared to today when it is taken very seriously indeed. Now think of how much worse schoolyard bullying would have been 100 years ago or the analogous bullying 1000 years ago.
I'm not religious, but the ancient mystery of why there is so much suffering in the world has a ready answer from the scientific point of view in fact here the irony is that humans are able to appreciate the ideal contrasting with the reality of the universe we have been given, because the final answer is that each species suffers equally more or less due to the demands of competition for limited resources and this is mandated by the natural logic of evolution and the nature of life tied to the problem of the second law of thermodynamics that entropy must increase... that is, each lifeform necessarily must fight for itself and there cannot be any sustained abundance due to the limited energy flows. But there is double irony to that question which ancient theologians could not have foreseen, because in the 1960s it did become obvious to many scientists (and even politicians) that if we tackled the large system-wide (world) problems of overuse of resources, deterioration of natural environment, and population size, certainly the whole human population could live comfortably, middle-class-like, essentially forever with a size of the order 2-3 billion, and I include of course all inhabitants of India, China, and Africa. But this would have required dismantling the colonial predatory apparatus that put poor countries at a huge disadvantage compared to Europe and N. America. The whole of the 20th century is a history of how the rich enslaved the poor countries in various ways, esp. in Africa, where these poor countries upon gaining independence then got caught in the proxy cold war between the US and the USSR. Not only were they economically exploited in various ways, often merely so corrupt leaders could prosecute civil wars, they were overloaded with enormous quantities of weapons, and the opposing side invariably received an equal amount. So there is a sense to which you could say there really was no chance for that utopian ideal of the 1960s to happen, ever. On the other hand, without the distraction of the cold war, I think we really could have considered seriously solving these system-wide problems in that era.
And in our hearts, we have to accept if we are honest this is not at all a surprise, since we have been doing this for so long aware of what is happening all around us. This is our future, that we have collectively chosen for ourselves and our children and grandchildren: The worst case scenario.
at 5:39 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Thursday, January 17, 2013
Our very own Mr. H. Morgan seems to be on a roll here, another hugely impressive gem appears as if out of the blue-- hard to understand why or how there could still be such masterpieces hidden in the darkness of oblivion after all the collecting and unearthing, but let the music stand as its own witness.
Here's a quick summary from RYM:
"Very jazzy, folky and rocky, so this must be good. Also, there's structures that resemble modern classical, and classical pop. Hard folk fusion with beautiful vocals, though the theme is anyway quite funny. First performed in 1974."
Musicians (Please note the presence of one of the greatest fusion guitarist-composers in history in my opinion, Jukka Hauru:)
Bass – Tapani Tamminen
Chorus – Agit Prop-Kvartetti*
Composed By – Eero Ojanen
Drums – Ari Valtonen
Guitar – Jukka Hauru
Horn [Birch Bark Horn] – Erkki Saarela, Pekka Milonoff
Orchestra – KOM-Kvartetti
Piano – Eero Ojanen
Producer – Pekka Aarnio
Recorded By – Erkki Hyvönen, Harri Sutinen
Vocals – Martti Launis, Monna Kamu, Pekka Aarnio, Sinikka Sokka
Vocals [Elocutionist] – Marja-Leena Kouki
Full title of the album is: " Väinämöisen Soitto - Cantata for four singers and jazz quartet. Two Communistic Protest Groups, KOM-kvartetti and Agit-Prop, made together this very special Fusion album without any political aspects of any sort." -- Mr Morgan.
(In fact, it is based on the finnish national epic, the Kalevala, as he mentions in comments below.)
Isn't it amazing how that special human yearning for a perfect society made itself manifest in such a horrific way in the 20th century with the rise (and fall) of communism? Yet this yearning is with us, in everyone, with conservatives who look to the past for perfection and liberals who look forward to a utopia in the future. And this (to the evolutionist) is part of the toolkit which natural selection put in our brains to make us work together better in a society full of individual actors with irregular actions, since we can always establish how imperfect human relations are in the present (in our surroundings) in comparison with the ideal we automatically, as it were, have in our imaginations. Even young children understand this idea with their emphasis on equality. In the same way when we look at human faces we are automatically at all times comparing with an unconscious " ideal " face we hold in our minds.
Many thanks to Mr. Morgan for his sharing of this " ideal " record: "Jeder nach seinen Fähigkeiten, jedem nach seinen Bedürfnissen!" - Karl Marx
at 8:01 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Sunday, January 13, 2013
Composer and pianist Heikki Sarmanto is a leading Finnish jazz scene figure who has been internationally praised for his symphonic, orchestral and jazz ensemble works. During the early 1960s, Sarmanto studied at the Sibelius Academy in Finland. Shortly thereafter he won a prestigious award for the International Competition of Jazz Composition in Minneapolis, MN. He also performed in numerous Finnish jazz recordings including Christian Schwindt’s “For Friends and Relatives” (RCA Victor) and Esa Pethman’s “The Modern Sound of Finland” (RCA Victor).
Sarmanto entered the Berklee College of Music in Boston, in 1968 where he honed his piano and composition skills with coaching from Herb Pomeroy, Charlie Mariano and Margaret Chaloff. In 1969 he released the first recording under his own name in 1969 titled “Flowers in the Water” (EMI/Columbia), which was taken from a live recording at the University of Jyvaskyla.
In 1970, Sarmanto was chosen “Jazz Musician of the Year” in Finland. Back in Boston, he joined fellow musicians Lance Gunderson (guitar), Craig Herndon (drums), George Mraz (bass) and fellow Finn Juhani Aaltonen (saxophone) to record what would be released 38 years later as “Boston Date” (Porter Records). This quartet, with Pekka Sarmanto replacing George Marz, would be known as the “Serious Music Ensemble”. They would go on to record “Counterbalance” and “Like a Fragonard” (EMI/Odeon) in Finland. These two powerful recordings showcase both of Sarmanto’s amazing abilities as a piano player and composer. They incorporate elements of jazz, folk, improvisation and even rock to make a distinctive statement.
In 1971, he was awarded top honors at the Montreux Jazz Festival in both piano and combo categories. Sarmanto continued to record for EMI/Odeon with the big band recording “Everything is it”. Throughout the 70s, Sarmanto continued to record albums that ranged from big band to ...Expand to read entire bio >arrangements based upon poetry.
In the 80s, Mr. Sarmanto was chosen by Sonny Rollins to arrange and conduct his “Saxophone Concerto”, which premiered and was televised in Tokyo in 1986. Some of his key works include “New Hope Jazz Mass” dedicated to Duke Ellington and John Coltrane, which was received with unequivocal praise at the opening of Saint Peter's Church in New York, and also Suomi Symphony, which premiered to rave reviews at Carnegie Hall in 1988.
He was instrumental in founding the internationally lauded UMO Jazz Orchestra and was appointed its artistic director in 1999. Sarmanto headed the Jazz Studio at the Sibelius Academy which is highest institute of Finnish music and now home to the foremost jazz department in that nation.
Sarmanto's collaboration with Brazil's great lyricist, Fernando Brant, and the gifted guitarist-arranger, Juarez Moreira, resulted in the beautiful CD “A Lua Luara”. It featured one of Brazil's top vocalists, Claudya de Oliveira. Sarmanto is currently working with the famous French music publisher Alphonse Leduc to produce a CD and sheet music of his newest work titled “Impressions-Paris”, which includes 20 solo piano works. In 2008 Sarmanto composed the jazz opera “Manon”, which premiered in Estonia with great success.
He has toured the United States, Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa and continues to actively expand his musical horizons. Porter Records along with Heikki Sarmanto and EMI Finland have begun to re-release a substantial body of Sarmanto’s previously unavailable early work for both the enjoyment of new and old enthusiasts of jazz.
Credits: Heikki Sarmanto - Piano , Electric Piano , Moog
Pekka Pöyry - Alto + Soprano Sax , Flute /
Pekka Sarmanto -Bass
Esko Rosnell - Drums & Percussion
Juha Björninen - Guitar
Maija Hapuoja - Vocals
at 2:30 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Saturday, January 12, 2013
A long time ago a very generous fusion collector posted their album Straight Ahead (their first I think) and it absolutely blew me away. It's only thanks to others that I later realized they had done three records in total. After hearing all three I think this is actually their masterpiece. (The other one btw is called "Suntalk" and has a side-long suite on b that I find a little too drawn-out.) The weird and quirky fusion just never lets up on this outing from 1982 (called "fat broth" I think, you will see a recipe for the LP/broth on the back) and there is an utter minimum of wanky improvising. It's amazing what was going on in Germany at this time in music. Of course even in N. America fusion was not yet dead but it was slowly becoming a dirty word especially among the cool and among the influential music reviewers.
Bass, Vocals– Cläusel Quitschau
Drums– Manfred von Bohr
Guitar– Jan Reimer
Keyboards, Vocals– Michael Herting
Saxophone– Norbert Stein
I realize of course an mp3 rip has been circulating of this record, I think it was posted on the growing bin website first, but I really wanted to do it justice so you can hear every detail of the thought these superb musicians put into their work. And in each song there is some very odd angularity or unique aspect to the riff that makes for intensely interesting listening, I think you'll agree. Consider track 6, Dampfwalzer, where under a furious rhythm section the guitarist plays virtually an atonal solo full of odd hendrixian sounds. Very abruptly the passage ends and you get the frantic sax on abnormal chords synths space effect (as in Nazaruk's Hymn to the Midnight Sun I posted before). The last track, Turkis, is my idea of a swan song to fusion, with the best and most beautiful melodic harmonies of any record, harking back to the seminal british and american masters, recalling perhaps a lot of Toto Blanke and Electric Circus who by that time had moved on from fusion .....
at 12:04 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Tuesday, January 08, 2013
Happy new year to everyone and best of luck with all.... for my part the year 2012 was one of the most productive in music history and I'm hoping so will be 2013...
As far as I know, though I might be wrong, there were three library records this duo did in the seventies all in a very similar style. The other 2 were posted on pornotrond's blog dusty shelf.
http://pornotrond.blogspot.ca/2012/08/ciclamino-marco-melchiori-r-luciani_16.html and the one before. The other two are called Atmosfere and Aspetti della natura.
I realize I have said all of this before but I was shocked at the quality and great beauty of the compositions and did a search to see if there were missing records-- I know many times I've talked about how wonderful some of these library records can be, and I wish I was a specialist in the genre so as to understand what to look for (as with the great "contemporary contrasts" record), but I'm just following the others.
Note that side A is composed by A. Riccardo Luciani and side B by Marco Melchiori.
Those who don't have a taste for classical music in particular won't be too keen on side A, it's reminiscent of the Milan Pilar compositions from the older library I shared, "Pastoral Seasons."
Side B is electronic and keyboard music.
Between the two, I feel the former has a bit of a leg up. Luciani has numerous credits if you scan his discography:
Couldn't there be hidden gems in that list that we could bring to light? As I said I wish I knew which are available to sample and which are still outstanding that might be gemological.
This third record in summary doesn't disappoint, it's exactly what I was expecting and I'm sure many out there will find it as soothing and peacefully relaxing in a very melancholy way, as I do.
Here's a good taste of the music from track A7 by Luciani:
And track B2 from Melchiori:
at 6:44 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Saturday, December 29, 2012
Back when the growing bin blog was going strong with beautiful german and other seventies albums, one of my favourites posted was discobasso's Musik Szene Saar I album, which you can read here:
I can't believe this was already almost 2 years ago!
It was a very uneven recording, but there were some really gorgeously progressive tracks on it that really blew me away. I didn't know there was a second one from a year later until it was featured for sale on his record store site.
For me the best tracks are from the soul-rock group Double You, which according to rateyourmusic and discogs never did a full album, and the folk quartet Ambi and Arno, same story, no record according to those sites, just the tracks on these two compilations. If this is true and complete, it's tragic these talented groups never got to record albums.
Then there was just a shockingly RIO-esque prog number by Wolfgang Brendel with the most awesome dissonances and tritones. This guy unfortunately doesn't appear on this second record.
Needless to say, the second edition is not as good as the first, but I had to get it out of curiosity. It's quite possible most will not enjoy it so much, other than the true german rock music fans, of which I'm a big one. But every once in a while a true gem appears from that period, in that country, that is completely unknown, so the search goes on....
The best track to me is from the hard rock band called Lancelot, their track 9, Danger in Sky, I feature here:
at 12:41 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Thursday, December 13, 2012
For the edification of the confused, the country ascription above is due to the fact the album was recorded in Macedonia (as you can see from the back cover) by Yugoslav (specifically, Serbian) musicians. Macedonia is a small country just north of Greece which has nothing to do with the former Yugoslavia obviously, geographically, I say this due to some confusion in the comments below created by someone who probably doesn't understand English too well. Or if they do understand English they don't read well, or perhaps, have trouble comprehending. Or are simply out to catch me even at the cost of making a mistake. Something like that. At any rate this record was posted before on the website yugojazz -- which I figured was likely because it's hard to find any yugo-related material not yet posted online. My mistake for thinking I had found something original!
This record reminds me a bit of Kjol's stuff with its intense fusionary output from a quartet of wonderful musicians and its 'updated' eighties style of breathy jazz. I'm surprised it's not better known considering how good the music is. There is some experimental stuff in here too, and very little of the conventional (jazzy or bluesy standards) -- if at all.
The start of track 5 sampled below features some really oddly ahead of its time distorted vocals behind the furiously fast pianist runs. Notice the synths behind him blowing as if in a wind chamber.
Really remarkable find, again from the growing bin record store. I will repeat how amazing it is to see so many rare and marvellous gems in one place and at such affordable prices compared to many an online record store.
The stars are Milos Petrovic the pianist, and Rade Bulatovic the bassist. They are rounded out by Jovan Maljokovic on tenor sax and Miroslav Karlovic on drums.
Track 5, Mondovisia from Milos Petrovic:
at 2:31 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Monday, December 10, 2012
Ferdi Özbegen Orchestra.
at 6:44 PM Posted by nahavanda
Friday, December 07, 2012
After the VA record I tried looking for more from this swedish jazz band with mild fusionary tendencies. I believe in online record stores this is referred to as fusion simply because a so-used label sells better than 'acoustic jazz' which is what this really is for the most part, with the exception of some nice synth work. I really love the way Susanna washes her synths into the pieces in that atmospheric, cloud-like kind of way, big thick chords flowing over the surface of the beat like white reflections moving on a turmoiled ocean. Unfortunately for me there isn't enough of this effect, only sparingly employed.
This was recorded April 20-21, 1980, in Stockholm. The Mwendo Dawa (in Swahili: the way to a special goal) players are:
Ove Johansson - tenor sax
Susanna Lindeborg - keys
Ulf Wakenuis - guitars
Anders Jormin - bass
David Sundby - drums
Not too sure what you guys opine but I don't think I'll go out of my way to find any remaining of their records, I think I'll leave the rest for true completists in jazz only. Is it surprising I can be turned off by 'too much jazziness?' It shouldn't be, I love fusion for its progressive moves, but my heart is in prog. Note that this band is still very active, one of the few from this period that continued almost verbatim through to the present era. This particular record is OOP of course and not currently available online or on cd.
On track 5, a good ex. of Susanna's synthwork:
at 10:41 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Thursday, December 06, 2012
Highly reminiscent to me of the Phileas Fogg record I posted some time back, but with much less jazziness in it. A few songs have a bit of reggae-tinged beat as might be expected for this time period, & quite a bit of new wave influence here, like zauberfinger. Unfortunately the female vocalist is nowhere as beautifully endowed laryngeally as Phileas Fogg's. For the progressive fan, be patient at the start -- you will be rewarded towards the end of side 1 moving on to side 2, with some unusual chord changes and melodies.
The band is led by Jean Launay, who plays drums, synths, and organs, and contributes vocals, and Ghislaine Clavier, responsible for the vocals. This couple is credited with the arrangements, production, and compositions. Album was recorded in Toulouse, March 1980. Rounding out the band are Remy Chebr on bass, Antonio Gomez and Serge Faubert on guitars, Jean Labelle, Jean-Claude Cruciati and Patrick Double on piano (on different tracks) and synths, & Jean Ribul on trumpets. This should be a nice break for those not so much into the fusion and jazzier stuff that I am apparently addicted to on this blog. It's too bad our beautiful princess of prog Isabel has kept a low profile of late since she was so good at ferreting out the rockier albums for sharing.
at 12:44 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Wednesday, December 05, 2012
In the last post our Master Shige talked about when one is feeling down-- what to do?
For myself, there is no feeling like hearing the postman ringing, or coming home to see a record in my mailbox. When this happens twice in one day, there's nothing like it. (I hope out there others will feel inspired to feel the same, buying and ripping rare records.) Yesterday this was exactly what I needed, with (what is a common experience) unpleasantness and bad feelings at work, followed by a record at my door.
"Welcome to a day in my life. 'Night Visions' is a concept album written as my perception of life. We live in a fast-paced society and sometimes forget the meaning of tranquility. The music on this album is an example of these times and how we must, through our most trying times, go on living with love for fellow man and self through tranquility and awareness." T.D.
Very well said and something always worth remembering in this day of "social media" especially. Taking a break from everything to think about why we are here, who we really are, or who we are to others around us, and what are we to do with the problems everywhere around small and large, is the most important duty for all of us. Because then for my part I realize I want to be remembered as someone who made others feel better in some way, small as it may be, whoever they might be-- I say this without arrogance, meaning only that if I'm to leave this earth tomorrow at least it will be mostly positivity I will leave behind (I hope).
In this mid-80s private pressed fusion outing, Tony on piano, synths, and percussion, is accompanied by James Marshall - Trumpet, Perc; Dixon Shanks - Sax, Flutes; James Ranka - keys; Brain Robinson - Bass; Wally Parks - Vibes; Donny Todd - Trombone; and Jay Eker on Bass. All the songs were written by Tony except the second one co-written with Ranka. The sound is very similar to Mike Elliott's Diffusion but updated by a few years into the more smooth fusion era. A couple of songs get pretty adventurous and progressive and you will surely notice these when you hear them.
at 11:34 AM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Tuesday, December 04, 2012
Beltane Fire "Different Breed "(1985,UK,pomp)
Excellent pomp album from UK released in 1985.
Beltane Fire released this sole album and some singles.
at 5:19 AM Posted by Shige
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
This album was posted long ago in poor rip and I feel it really deserves better, being an astonishing combination of fusion, modern classical, jazz, and that ethnic component typical of advanced Germanic music, a bit zeuhlish almost. It's surprising this was made in 1971. Like Soft Machine 3, it's a double-LP with each side featuring one track. On the back is written the following: "we are very happy to present to you this unique double-album based on an idea by bacillus..." It was recorded live in Zurich at Weisser Wind, which is across from the old railroad station by the large Zuhaftingsalter Timepiece...
...This reminds me of a time just after reunification in the late eighties when I was invited to the former East Germany as resident privatsdocent in biermeister wissenschafts, near the town of Neuschwanbergendorferingen which featured a similar timepiece at its old station. I was cordially invited for a prospectus in the Schaftsingencollegeschellsteintungserstellensgymnasium, which in English, you know as a co-op. It was curious to observe towards the twilight hour the pedestrians, often quite tipsy or even drunk on weissbier (of which the local one was notorious for its ability to remove the panties from young female students) waiting at the lights across the highway which often took some 5-6 minutes to change. Of course, as a westerner, I would attempt a crossing as soon as I saw there were no cars coming. Immediately some Bürgermeister would wag his long finger at me and comment, "ach no! it is not permitted to cross on das roten licht…! "
To which I would reply, "pardon me sir, there is no car coming, as you may easily observe, not even a lada, and it is a wonderful warm night... it is better to cross than to remain here waiting. Please, good night Herr B... Guten nacht."
Immediately with his cane across my nipples he would stop me, "no sir! where are you from? one does not cross here upon the red. This is VERBOTEN! "
I laughed gently, "sir, this is the night of quiet and we have had a bit too much perhaps to drink.. I shall proceed on my way with your kind forbearance upon the wings of my Erdinger ..."
Then, a local politician well-known in these parts for his war service in the underground naked-molerat burrows who had been listening quietly decided to speak up.
"Sir!! Herr K.!! you are not from here, are you!! perhaps you laugh at us simple townsfolk. Yes, we are unsophisticated, not like you. We stand at the red lights and do not cross. Even, some among us are mentally retarded [here he pointed out a teen chomping on a knackwurst who evidently had Down's Syndrome] -- even some of us are mental defectives [here he pointed towards an empty spot-- which occasioned my surprise, to which he replied immediately with] Ach! again I see Hans, the village idiot, is on stress leave!"
"yes! in Germany, these village idiots are now unionized-- they are permitted 452 days of sick leave per year!" whereupon I remarked in utmost perplexity:
"Sir!! you forget: they are a union of idiots!! -- as I was saying, in our town, we have multiple mental defectives, prone to long incurable stays in mental asylums of which there are more than four hundred in the area. But listen here!" and his face was contorted with rage, almost a centimeter away from me, so close one of his head lice made the long desperate plunge onto my neatly-combed hair and my alcohol-dulled reflexes were too slow to trap it in my teeth:
"But--- We are in Germany here! Wir sind in Deutschland! We DO NOT CROSS!!! NEIN!!!!"
Suddenly the others who by now numbered in the dozens (as the light still had not changed) would crowd me, in a riot of angry faces as if in a painting by H. Bosch with twisted expressions of murderous rapture, telling me to stop and forbear. At that time almost the entire town including the wet-nurses with their milk-laden breasts were standing there. I would then observe a grandmother in a wig and hair-net, an angry red-haired lady with a large potbelly and bunions of equal size exclaim:
"sir ! you have no children, ja ? "
"pardon me, madam, no I am not yet blessed with these beasts at this time " I dutifully replied.
She would then continue,
"You must not cross! for you are a poor example to the children of our town ! See here!! " At which she would point out the long-haired puppet called der Struwwelpeter in the nearby toy store for want of a better example (who to this day still gives me feverish nightmares). Suddenly, a drunken 10-year-old did in fact appear and shook his head at me, sadly, for attempting to cross, before proceeding into a large mountain in pursuit of a pied flautist.
By now angry, I yelled, "A pox upon you townsfolk!!!" -- and, "I shall be too old for children by the time this light changes!!!"
"You shall not cross this light!" the townspeople yelled in unison, all of them there, as if in a general assembly, some in their nightshirts, night-hats, and night-skiboots.
"I shall indeed!" I answered, badly needing to deprive my kidneys of their precious yellow nectar. But still they all blocked me in an impasse of contorted and stuporous bodies... and then, the witch screamed out,
"Cross--- AND YOU SHALL NOT HAVE CHILDREN!! "
Today, of course, I still stand at that red light, waiting for it to change… still waiting…
and I and frau K. do have children or kinder as we ironically call them in our language (which wild animals, I am loathe to admit, have indeed cursed our lives as the witch foretold) -- and how I wish that light would change!!!
at 4:17 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Mount Everest, Mwendo Dawa, Opposite Corner, Soffgruppen - Det Nyjazzte Från Göteborg (1977, Sverige)
I'm back from a nice relaxing holiday with empty pockets and this one fusion outing from VA in the city of Goteborg, Sweden-- note the presence of huge jazz artists Mount Everest (featured on this website before) and Soffgruppen, one of the greatest fusion bands out of all Scandinavia (in my opinion). Disappointingly the last track, by this last mentioned, is a free jazz improv and is quite meandering, never really building to the climax one is getting excited for...
Now I have to get back to work to pay for our crazy spending (not entirely my wife's fault this time) as well as the next holiday and bunch of records. Oh boy, looks like the kids won't be getting much for christmas.
at 6:23 PM Posted by Tristan Stefan