Get this crazy baby off my head!


Clear Blue Sky


Clear Blue Sky - Destiny - 1971 - Saturn

The second album of 70’s vintage.This is the original vinyl issued as a limited edition on the Saturn label and has now become very collectable indeed.‘..The soaringly impressive sound of Clear Blue Sky…they play with a passion that is both forceful & flawless. Sheer heaven....’ Edwin Pouncey/New Musical Express


Pick Up
Bottom Of Your Soul
Follow The Light
Back On The Road Again
When I Call Your Name
Waiting For The Day
Killing Time

The following two tracks recorded in 1968 were previously unreleased. These two tracks were not included on the original release of the album on the Saturn label, and are only available on the 2001 CD version .

Could This Be The Way
Big City Man


John Simms - guitar
Ken White - drums
Mark Sheather - bass
All music by John Simms.


The Album. The first two songs on the album, the title-track and Pick Up, are simply wonderful, by all means. Especially impressive is that they not only follow the vein of the best tracks from the previous album, but also show a logical compositional development in comparison with them and, most importantly, in terms of diversity of themes and arrangements. There are more than enough progressive things in Destiny and Pick Up to regard them as real progressive killers, though the presence of brilliant keyboard parts and solos (by an unknown yet very talented keyboard player) on the title-track makes it a winner. (To this very style Hawkwind came in 1974 on the "Hall of the Mountain Grill" album.) In all other respects Destiny and Pick Up are like twin progressive brothers, whose place is exactly at the head of the album's track-list. Although other songs are also very good on their own right, the first two tracks surpass all of them in all senses. In other words, the further development of events on "Destiny" isn't too rich on events as such, as it was the case with the previous album, too, when The Journey To the Inside of the Sun was just finished. In respect of musical progressiveness, tracks 3 to 6, Bottom of Your Soul, Follow the Light, Back On the Road Again, and Vagabonds, have more or less the same characteristics as Mystify, Tools of My Frade, and I'm Coming Home from the swirled with Vertigo's indifference (to its real status) "CBSII" album. The only detail (which is major, though, - with regard to the band's firm style, formed already during the "Out of the Blue" recording sessions), that differ from most of the "Destiny" tracks from the "CBSII" album almost as a whole, is the presence of a solid number of elements that make up the Space Rock sound. Of course, it also feels great to hear John's wonderful solos (as well as a lot of other musical moves) firmly backed by his own heavy and strong riffs. The closing three songs of original "Destiny" album are the shortest tracks here. The 7th track, When I Call Your Name, with another invisible guest (or were these two guests just ghosts?), performing a couple sax solos, is the most mellow song on the album, whose stylistic "sister" may be the previous album's closing track. Both the following songs Waiting for the Day and Killing Time structurally are, in itself, similar to the Four that go right after the two opening masterpieces, but there is too little playing time in each of them to stretch a more or less large-scale musical palette. While the first of the two live bonus tracks, Could This Be the Way, whose compositional and performing qualities can touch the best tracks on "Destiny", could have been a very good ending to the album if only it had the same quality of sound, Big City Man just catches up with You Mystify, Follow the Light, etc.
Summary. A great step forward (return to form, keeping in mind "Out of the Blue"?) that the band took on the first two tracks of "Destiny" is, unfortunately, marred with a series of more accessible songs in the way typical for Clear Blue Sky's previous album, though I really like this good, original, hard-edged proto-progressive. There are, however, as many as three songs that are too simple to these ears on the band's third album (tracks 7 to 9), so even counting Could This Be the Way, I can't estimate "Destiny" higher than just a very good album and only as a whole. Actually, I think at the time of "Destiny" the band already showed signs of stagnation. Destiny is the word. But Destiny loves those who can find the strength to bounce back and the return of the mighty Clear Blue Sky is really glorious. © VM. August 16, 2001 www.progressor.net/review/clear_blue_sky_overall.html


The late nineties as well as the advent of the new millennium has brought about a renewed interest in bands and music from the sixties and early seventies. One of these bands is Clear Blue Sky.
Originating from Acton, London, the original line-up of Clear Blue Sky was a trio consisting of John Simms, Ken White and Mark Sheather. The three were childhood friends, even attending the same school (The Duhig brothers who would go on to form Jade Warrior also attended the same school). Their musical roots lay in the blues infused rock that had popularised in the United Kingdom by veteran bluesmen such as Alexis Korner. The first band that they formed was called Jug Blues and they started to tour the college and club circuit. Band names changed from Jug Blues to Matuse and then X and the group even toured Germany thus gaining a considerable amount of experience. Apart from the usual chore of cover version the group also started writing its own material, which started to be introduced into the live sets, and was generally well received.The band's breakthrough came when they won the marquee Club talent contest and were immediately snapped up by Donovan's manager Ashley Kozak. The fact that they had such a high-profile manager enabled the band to be increase their profile, thus obtaining better gigs as well as securing a record contract. With everything falling in place the band hooked up with the Vertigo label, a label known for its recruitment of new bands that were creating (still) experimental sounds ranging from heavy blues to progressive rock. A record contract also meant a change of name and Clear Blue Sky was born. Thus in spring 1970, the band entered Island studios, next door to Led Zeppelin who were busy recording Led Zeppelin II. Production was entrusted to one of the hottest producers at that time, Patrick Campbell-Lyons, who had played with Nirvana (the UK band!) a few years previously. The band were still barely eighteen, but the music they created was innovative in that it combined that heavy blues edge with the free flowing forms of psychedelia and the complexity of progressive rock. The album artwork was done by Roger Dean, one of the earliest pieces of work to be done by the now legendary artist. Thus Clear Blue Sky (Vertigo 6360 013, gatefold sleeve, spiral label, value BS 35.00) was released in January 1971, alongside releases by bands such as Black Sabbath and Juicy Lucy. The album would be issued in Europe under a different name, Play It Loud as well as with different artwork.
The group toured extensively and made a name for themselves with their style that was harder and heavier than many of the bands in circulation, yet they were continuously open to experimentation and improvisation. In fact their recordings were made live in the studio with a minimal amount of takes. The band were also featured on a Vertigo compilation Heads Together/Round One (Vertigo 6360 045, 2-LP, gatefold sleeve, spiral label, Value BS20.00) as well as on the compilation The Vertigo Trip with the track Birdcatcher included.
However the continuous touring had its toll on the band, whose members were still teenagers when the album was released and in 1975, John Simms decided to disband the group and join Tangerine Peel. Mark Sheather got married and disappeared from the musical scene, but Simms would later team up with Ken White and Smith Campbell (Hokus Poke) to form The Needle. The Needle would also be disbanded with Simms gong on to join fusion group Separate Energy, The Ginger Baker Band and Karizma (with Ginger Baker's son Kofi).
Thus the mid-seventies and the whole of the eighties came and went by without any news from Clear Blue Sky. However the nineties brought about renewed interest in the band, whose debut (and only) album was still selling healthily via independent record labels such as Repertoire and Si-Wan. Furthermore, there had long been a rumour circulating amongst the band's fans that there lay within the vaults two unreleased albums by the band. 1990 was the year that Clear Blue Sky fans were waiting for as a new album was released. No new material was recorded, but instead material recorded in the seventies was given a brush up and an album released. The album was called Destiny (Saturn SRLP 101, Value BS 10.00) and was released in limited quantities on vinyl and cassette on the Saturn label.
That same year the band were invited to play at the 20th Anniversary of the Isle Of Wight Festival. This was the perfect excuse for the band to reform and play material that had not been heard live in close to twenty years. Furthermore in October of that year, Vertigo released the compilation album Vertigo Classics And Rarities which also featured Rocket Ride, taken from the band's debut album. Following further touring, the band began to attract interest from record companies and they were signed to the Aftermath label, which immediately released the Destiny album on CD (AFT 1005) with new artwork by Phil Schmee. Not only was the interest in the band coming from record companies, but fans from all around the world were clamouring for new releases from the band. However before this was done, the group had to changed radically. The power trio, that was so popular in the late sixties/early seventies, was expanded to a quintet to include a keyboardist (Adam Lewis) and a female backing vocalist, John Simms wife, Maxine. This move allowed the band to explore further the dimensions of rock music and move into the realms of space rock as well as maintain their heavy blues style. The new album was also a concept album and was titled Cosmic Crusader, based on a science fiction theme and was released in 1996. The Ginger Baker link was also revived with the artwork entrusted to his ex-wife Elizabeth Finch.In 1998, the new album also received a mention by Barry "Mr Vertigo" Winton in the liner notes to the new Polygram 2-CD compilation Still Dizzy After All These Years that included My Heaven. The new millennium also saw the band celebrating their thirtieth anniversary and this was done with the band gong into the studio to record a new album as well as release an album of live and unreleased tracks.
Thus Out Of Blue (AFT 1009) was released in 2000 featuring unreleased tracks from the pre-vertigo years (1968-69) as well as four live tracks. 2001 saw the band releasing Mirror Of The Stars, a new album with new material which should please the band's numerous fans. The future looks bright. © 2003 DPRP http://dprp.net/forgotten/clearbluesky/index.html


The Pink Mice


The Pink Mice - In Action - 1971 - Europa

Brilliant forgotten album. Symphonic prog rock strongly influenced by classical music. Don't let this description put you off. It's a great synth based album, and well worth hearing.


A-1. Italienisches Konzert in F-Dur,1.Satz/
Air aus der Suite Nr. 3 in D-Dur/ Italienisches Konzert in F-Dur,3.Satz
A-2. "Fr Elise",Bagatelle a-moll/ Sonate fr Klavier Nr.14 cis-moll(Mondschein)
A-3. Konzert fr Trompete und Orchester Es-Dur


B-1. Anitras Tanz,aus "Peer Gynt"
B-2. Sonate fr Klavier Nr.8 c-moll(Pathtique), Satz 1-4
B-3. Brandenburgisches Konzert,1.und 3.Satz


Peter Hecht / keyboards
Peter Hesslein / guitar, vocals
Dieter Horns / bass, vocals
Joachim Rietenbach / drums


The Pink Mice is a German band of the early 70’s clearly Symphonic and often accused of being clones of ELP, something that is not accurate, they were close to being clones of TRIUMVIRAT (Triumvirat is also known as The Rat, so the connection between Mice and Rat is easy to understand) in other words they were almost clones of a so called clone of ELP.

Some people may ask how they could follow TRIUMVIRAT if THE PINK MICE released their debut album in 1971 and The Rat in 1972, the reason is simple, TRIUMVIRAT was formed in 1969 and was already popular in Germany plus they had a lot of radio airplay with a 45 RPM released in January 1971 containing the songs “Dancers Delight” and “Timothy”..

But THE PINK MICE history gets more peculiar, their original lineup consisted of The keyboardist Peter Hetch, Peter Gesslein (Guitar & Vocals), Dieter Horns (Bass & Vocals) and the drummer Joachim Rietenbach is the exact same lineup of an already popular Hard Prog band called LUCIFER’S FRIEND but without the British vocalist John Lawton, seems that the members of LUCIFER’S FRIEND wanted to go for the Symphonic sounds with exclusively German members instead of the aggressive rock music created with Lawton as a member.

Their albums are clearly influenced by Classical Music and they don’t hide this fact, the titles of the songs include among others “Capriccio Italien op.45”, “Brandenburgisches Konzert Nr.3,1.Satz”, "For Elise”, Sonata for Klavier, etc.

During their short career they released two excellent albums “In Action” (1971) and “In Synthesizer Sound” (1972) both are highly recommended and a must have for any Symphonic proghead that loves Synth based albums, if you need more historical info about the band, check the page of LUCIFER’S FRIEND /www.progarchives.com


Noir - We Had To Let You Have It - 1971 - Dawn

Released in 1971 on the Dawn label, this is the only known album from the British progressive group. Barry Ford was a member of Clancy in the mid-seventies, and Merger in the late seventies. It's a low-key release with above average guitar work. Quite a good album. Any info appreciated.


2. Hard Labour
3. Beggar Man
4. In Memory Of Lady X
5. How Long
6. System
7. Indian Rope Man
8. Ju Ju Man


Tony Cole - Keyboards
Barry Forde - Drums & Vocals
Gordon Hunte - Guitars & Vocals
Roy Williams - Bass




Sade - Best of (The Remixes) - 2006 - ( 2xLP - Vinyl ) - SDA

Double vinyl compilation featuring the best and most in demand remixes featured on the highly sought after Sade - The Remixes series. Included here is the brilliant Kenny Larkin mix of ‘Give It Up’ and the Musk Men mix of ‘I Never Thought I’d See the Day’, as well as the Mad Professor mix of ‘Love Is Stronger Than Pride’ and Ben Watt’s mix of ‘By Your Side. These mixes will not be available on vinyl again.


01. Sade-Love is stronger than pride (mad professor mix)
02. Sade-Give it up (kenny larkin rmx)
03. Sade-Kiss of live (deep mix)
04. Sade-Feel no pain (nellie hooper mix)
05. Sade-Turn my back on you (heffs mix)
06. Sade-Sweetest taboo (extended version)
07. Sade-Somebody already broke my heart (excursions mix)
08. Sade-I never thought id see the day (danny tenaglias musk men mix)
09. Sade-By your side (ben watt mix)


Herbie Hancock


Herbie Hancock - Sextant - 1972 - Columbia

This album is one of the best progressive jazz rock recordings you will ever hear.Way ahead of it's time, it is a fabulous mix of jazz, funk and rock.Hancock pushed the synthesizer to the limit on this recording, and the three brilliantly original tracks demonstrate just how good a musician Hancock is.Hancock stated there was nowhere else for the line up to go after this album, and listening to Sextant, he was probably right. Hard to better an album as good as this.


1. Rain Dance — 9:16
2. Hidden Shadows — 10:11
3. Hornets — 19:35


Herbie Hancock, piano, Fender Rhodes, Hohner D-6 clavinet, mellotron
Bennie Maupin, soprano sax, bass clarinet, piccolo, afuche, hum-a-zoo
Dr. Eddie Henderson, trumpet, flugelhorn
Julian Priester, bass trombone, tenor trombone, alto trombone, cowbell
Buster Williams, electric bass, acoustic bass
Billy Hart, drums
Dr. Patrick Gleeson, ARP 2600 and soloist
Buck Clarke, percussion


This final offering from Herbie Hancock's Mwandishi band finds them pushing like Samson, ready to bring down the columns of jazz and rock to usher in a new era. Hancock obviously had learned much from his work over the years with Miles Davis, and much like Davis' work during his electric period, the music presented here are great abstract paintings, taking full advantage of the keyboard technology offered at the time.
Right from the start, "Rain Dances" can't help but grab your attention, with sequencer bubbles percolating away against ascending, metallic synth lines within a vast echo. Listening to this, you feel as if you've stumbled upon a mad professor's chemistry lab somewhere on an abandoned space station. As the piece progresses, Hancock provides chilly Fender Rhodes that bounces playfully against the more earthy strains of Williams' acoustic bass, until the legions of synths and sequencers rise up once and for all to drive the piece home. "Hidden Shadows" is probably the album's highlight for progressive fans, and for me, simply one of the greatest fusion tracks of all time. It is characterized by a loppy, infectious, funky 19/8 beat; brass lines tugging against the groove in a sighing, off-key manner; and a scampering, gleefully psychotic piano solo. Also, if you can imagine what a jaundiced mellotron calling out sickly on its deathbed sounds like, well it has that, too. Seriously, I've never heard the mellotron sound quite like it does here, and Hancock successfully coaxes a new flavor out of the instrument. Though each averaging ten minutes in length, both "Rain Dances" and "Hidden Shadows" seem to fly by each time I play them.
Out of the three, the side-long closer "Hornets" is the most obvious adherent to Davis' work. The rhythm is governed by a sparse line from bassist Williams, hi-hat-emphasized rock beat from Hart, and sharp Fender Rhodes punctuations. The foreground is driven at the start of the piece mainly by Henderson's trumpet flourishes and in its latter half by all sorts of keyboard overload from Hancock, including processed Rhodes and clavinet. That this pretty much fell by the wayside upon its initial release should surprise no one. Thankfully, time seems to have caught up with Sextant and nowadays it sees its artistic (and hopefully commercial) due. Back in 1973, however, Hancockwas feelin' the financial hurt and knew he would have to find something new. His answer was to bring this particular chapter to a close, retain Bennie Maupin, and form a new band that would integrate Sly Stone's brand of funk with jazz. The resulting product, Headhunters, would become a jazz landmark. As it stands, though, I dare say that this one is even more the jewel of the crown for progressive fans. review © Joe McGlinchey — 5-18-04 © ground and sky 1999-2007
In 1972, Herbie Hancock moved to his third recording label, switching from Warner to Columbia. He brought his band along with him, as Sextant was recorded by most of the same individuals who appeared on Mwandishi and Crossings. Sextant finds Hancock somewhere between the wild experimentation of Crossings and the jazz-funk of Headhunters. It is a tour-de-force of electric keyboard sounds and in this respect I think it stands head and shoulders above all its contemporaries that I've heard. Weather Report — the only other fusion band that emphasized electric keyboards to this extent — was nowhere near this level of sophistication on any of their first three albums, despite Joe Zawinul's reputation for being a pioneer of the devices.
Hancock worked with Miles Davis on his controversial 1972 ode to funk On the Corner, and Sextant — especially the 20-minute "Hornets" — comes off as being inspired by that project. As usual, whereas Davis could be harsh and abrasive, Hancock uses his timbres and rhythms to dazzle. Like large portions of On the Corner, "Hornets" is a sonic fiesta undercut by funky bass lines and insistent hi-hat patterns. Hancock knocks off some riffs on the electric piano over the rhythm section, but the track's real depth is provided by the cornucopia of sounds generated by the layers of other electric keyboards; this had to be one of the most futuristic-sounding albums ever made when it came out. Throughout much of the first half of the track either Eddie Henderson or Bennie Maupin can be heard soloing, although it is a lost, desperate kind of soloing that is artfully placed in the far corners of the mix, giving the familiar tones of the trumpet and sax the character of being in imminent danger of getting left behind wherever this ship is going. And indeed they do get left behind; they are absent on the remainder of the track and the keyboards completely take over.
The album's most original cut has to be the opener, "Rain Dance," in which synthesizers that sound like raindrops echoing through a dank chamber form a loose beat that is taken over by a repetitive, mechanical riff introduced later in the song. The synthesizer droplets and an array of other artificial gurgles and squonks play all over the vamp for the conclusion of the piece. Stylistically, this sounds to me like a precursor to ambient dub and some varieties of the drum & bass/IDM that I've heard. Awesome. "Hidden Shadows" launches a slow-motion funk riff and runs it for ten minutes while stoned horn charts and all manners of keyboard sounds contribute. It's funk on acid.
With Sextant, Hancock finished his Mwandishi period as strongly as he started it. In my opinion, Mwandishi, Crossings and Sextant amount to a very strong trio of electric jazz albums and represent the pinnacle of Hancock's electric phase. review © Matt P. — 6-21-05 © ground and sky 1999-2007

LTJ Bukem


LTJ Bukem - Planet Earth - 2005 - Digital Sounds (also released with a bonus DVD)

Planet Earth takes some of the best mixes by a variety of DJs and MCs and spins them together in one fantastic-sounding CD. LTJ Bukem is well known throughout the world for his unique ability to create a fusion of many types of music with classic drum ’n’ bass. Often called the godfather of modern drum ’n’ bass, LTJ Bukem has made a career in combining hip hop, soul, acid jazz and tired dance music into dance beats that call attention to themselves not only for their energy, but also for their unique sounds. Over the years, LTJ Bukem has produced a variety of albums that have compiled some of the best beats and ethereal backgrounds; these albums are known as the Earth series. This issue of Planet Earth presents a compilation of all new remixes taken from the Earth series, remixed not only for the stereo CD version, but also for an excruciatingly well-realized 6.1-channel DTS surround mix. These are not simply old tracks that have been remixed to new sound specifications; most of the remixes are the work of other drum ’n’ bass stalwarts such as Phluff, Dr. Jazz’s Universal Remedy and Makoto, among others.

Makoto’s “You’re Divine” presents some of the funkier side of jazz, while “Unconditional Love” presents more of a stylized ambience, less dance music and more shake your body until your brain starts pouring out your ears music. You could really either just lie back in the sun and soak it all in or you could strip down and rub sweat with the other dancing fools all around you. Your choice, but either one is appropriate. In “The Set-Up,” K-Scope really throws down the heavy bass and presents its track as more of a brooding dance mix than any sort of jazzy fusion, though there are elements of organs and electric pianos that flutter around in the background.

“Love Is” features a classic-sounding jazz song, sung remarkably by Dr. Jazz’s Universal Remedy, and simply made uptempo with a deeper bass line and a tinkling cymbal that never stops. This perhaps exemplifies the most complete cross between a dance beat and a classical jazz tune with accompanying vocals. The scatting that occurs in the track sounds absolutely marvelous on the DVD. Trumpets and saxophones help make the experience that of Tito Puente on acid. PHD and the Funky Technicians get truly funky with their offering of “Above and Beyond,” a relentlessly driving track that keeps the percussion at the forefront and makes your forearms tired just listening.

While this is a good compilation in terms of the actual music, it is a magnificent one in terms of sheer artistic and technical artistry. It only takes one listen to hear the fullness of each track and the incredibly complex-made-simple arrangements. There is so much going on in each track that it makes one appreciate the mixes that much more. Nothing drowns anything else out or tramples it unnecessarily. Not only do all of these mixers know how to create a distinctive and addictive sound, they also understand the intricate technical details involved in the ability of modern technology to create a recording that can simulate a live performance. It also calls worthy attention to LTJ Bukem’s ability to mix and to choose others who are masters in their own right. If you don’t have any of the previous Earth albums, try out this two-disc CD/DVD-A version of Planet Earth and keep it spinning.


01 - Makoto - Extensions Of Life
02 - K-Scope - Black Widow
03 - Makoto - You're Divine
04 - LTJ Bukem - Unconditional Love (Quintet Plays Reconditioned Love Remix)
05 - K-Scope - The Setup
06 - Phluff - Trailin'
07 - Words 2 B Heard Collective - Stranded
08 - Doctor Jazz's Universal Remedy - Love Is
09 - PhD & Funky Technicians - Above & Beyond
10 - K-Scope - Outer Mind
11 - LTJ Bukem - Suspended Space


Arguably the prime innovator in the development of jungle from its early status as an offshoot of hardcore techno into the respected, stylistic genre it became by the end of the 1990s, L.T.J Bukem gained fame as an auteur in all fields of the drum'n'bass movement: as a top-flight breakbeat DJ, owner and label-head of the Good Looking/Looking Good stable of labels and, of course, for his recordings -- inspired by the lush strings and natural ambience of '70s jazz-fusion masters like Lonnie Liston Smith and Chick Corea as well as elegiac Chicago house and moody Detroit techno. Allied with the early-'90s rave and hardcore scene, Bukem began working on production near the end of the 1980s; though his light, airy sound made little sense to his contemporaries, Bukem's style was emulated much more as the jungle scene gained momentum during the mid-'90s. While such producers as Roni Size and Goldie gained the limelight for their solo work, Bukem purposely downplayed his own artistic career in favor of mix albums and label-spanning retrospectives which highlighted dozens of artists from his labels.

Born in London in 1967, Danny Williamson was adopted and raised in Watford by strict Baptist parents, earning his nickname from the TV series Hawaii Five-O ("book 'em, Danno"). He took trumpet lessons as a child, played piano and drums as well in various school bands and began listening to a wide range of music, including jazz, fusion and soul and fusion plus hip-hop and electro. After being expelled from school at the age of 16, Bukem made the natural move to DJ status later in the '80s; inspired by rare-groove DJs like Tim Westwood and Gilles Peterson, Bukem and several friends set up the Sunshine sound system and played out the latest hip-hop and electro tracks at DJ battles around his Luton base.

When the acid-house explosion hit Britain near the turn of the decade, Bukem gradually stopped going to sound-system battles and began attending the ever-growing raves dotting England's countryside. He began mixing at them as well, and produced his first track "Logical Progression" in 1990. Bukem soon grew frustrated with a lack of control for his own recordings, however, and in 1991 decided to form his own label, Good Looking Records. Bukem's production style was a continuing anachronism on the rave/breakbeat scene; early Good Looking tracks like "Demons Theme," "Atlantis" and "Music" provided a soulful, melodic alternative to the prevailing hardcore tracks then in vogue.

By 1994, L.T.J Bukem had formed his second label (Looking Good Records) and begun the formation of an artist collective -- Peshay, Aquarius (aka Photek), PFM, ILS & Solo, Blame, Nookie, Seba & Lo-Tec, Tayla, Funky Technicians -- similarly inclined towards melodicism and epic expanses of sound. In October of that same year, he began the club-night Speed at the Mars Bar in order to spread the Good Looking/Looking Good approach to sound. With Bukem and jungle pioneer Fabio spinning breakbeat records while MC Conrad added verbal gymnastics over the top, it soon became one of the most popular clubs in London. Appropriately, Bukem's first full-length was a mix album, Mixmag Live!, Vol. 3, which confirmed his status as one of the top breakbeat DJs in the drum'n'bass scene.

The jungle phenomenon had begun to crest as a commercial force in 1994, and the appearance of Goldie's Timeless one year later signaled the dawn of widespread critical respect for drum'n'bass. Though Bukem signed a major deal as well (through London), he debuted in true label-head fashion, releasing the Good Looking/Looking Good compilation Logical Progression instead of a proper solo LP. Bukem did contribute several productions (and mixed tracks for the second disc of the set), but the album definitely portrayed an artist committed to the jungle community more than his own career.

After a subsequent DJ tour of America (his first), Bukem showcased a new direction in late 1996 with Earth, Vol. 1. Another compilation (this time spanning his catch-all subsidiary Earth Records), it concentrated on midtempo tracks inspired by hip-hop, soul jazz and funk -- again featuring very few tracks actually by Bukem. The sequel to Logical Progression continued the same share-the-wealth strategy -- it was helmed and mixed by Good Looking right-hand man Blame. Besides inaugurating yet another mix-album series (Progression Sessions) in 1998, Bukem released several additional volumes in both the Logical Progression and Earth series. Journey Inwards, his first full-fledged solo album, followed in the spring of 2000. Producer 01 was issued a year later. Good Looking's release schedule didn't wane through 2005; Bukem remained as active as ever. © John Bush, All Music Guide



Kestrel - Kestrel - 1975 - Cube (This album is a Japanese 20-bit K2 remastered reissue of original album from 2000)

Obscure prog rock album from the mid Seventies.Excellent songs and musicianship.This group could have gone far, but like so many excellent bands in the Seventies, they disappeared overnight.There were so many talented artists back then, it was virtually impossible to compete with the mega groups.This is a classic album that never got the recognition it deserved.


1. The Acrobat (6:45)
2. Wind Cloud (4:41)
3. I Believe In You (4:10)
4. Last Request (4:50)
5. In The War (7:32)
6. Take It Away (4:11)
7. Ene Of The Affair (4:51)
8. August Carol (7:18)


- Dave Black / guitar, vocals
- John Cook / guitar, synthesizers
- Tom Knowles / lead vocals
- Fenwick Moir / bass
- Dave Whitaker / drums, percussion


Kestrel released their album of smooth, polished and song-based mid-70's symphonic progressive rock in 1975, and then vanished completely. Not an unknown fate for many bands from the same period, but it was perhaps a bit odder with Kestrel than other groups, as their highly professional and accessible music still should have had great commercial appeal in 1975. All the songs on "Kestrel" were written by guitarist Dave Black, with the exception of "End of the Affair" that was penned by keyboardist John Cook. The songs can be, to be honest, a bit hard to distinguish from each other at first, but repeated listens will quickly solve that problem. "The Acrobat" is one of the strongest tracks, and also very representative for Kestrel's style. Cook provides a backdrop of string-synths, organ and Mellotron underneath the bright and uplifting vocal melodies of Tom Knowles. Cook also adds clavinet and el-piano to the instrumental passage, making sure to give the arrangements the needed degree of variety. "Wind Cloud" is a lush ballad, but "I Believe In You" goes back to the style of "The Acrobat" again. Already here it becomes apparent that the band's sound was extremely defined, and it would have been interesting to see how they would have developed it if they had stayed around long enough for another record. "Last Request" strays away from the formula a bit by having a laid-back, piano-dominated verse with a more powerful and dramatic bridge leading up to the chorus that again is unmistakeable Kestrel. They successfully attempt some slightly more complex structures in "In the War" that is far darker than the rest of the album. "Take it Away" takes the band back on "safe" ground again, although it's probably the weakest song. Cook delivers his only song on the album with "End of the Affair", a good progressive ballad with some nice melodies. The first part of "August Carol" is yet another ultra-typical Kestrel-sounding song, but climaxes into a majestic Mellotron-theme to die for, and brings a superb finale to this forgotten minor classic. © 1998-2007 vintageprog.com
The development of electronic keyboard instruments has been much like the fashion industry; it really is a shame that these two worlds can't be brought together, in which case Mellotron trousers and a Fender Rhodes sports shirt, both back in fashion, would be a perfect match. In the early '70s, the former keyboard was just about everywhere on the hit parade, supposedly on the verge of replacing entire symphony orchestras with the touch of a finger. Kestrel was a quintet from Newcastle, England that featured a keyboardist named John Cook on Mellotron, among other axes. He was not the only talent in the group, nor the only reason to listen to the only album the group ever made, originally released in the mid- '70s on the Cube label. But largely forgotten like many a progressive rock album from this era that enjoyed only piddling success, the Kestrel effort has become the subject of cult interest basically because there's a Mellotron on it. In 2000, a Japanese collector's label reissued the album on CD. In a somewhat superficial judgment of Mellotron playing from this period, Cook seems to suffer from the same problems everyone else did. The Mello-nauts were too busy listening to themselves, apparently soaking up the wonder of so much sound coming out of every touch. While it wasn't exactly a string section, it was pretty cool, maybe too cool. The instrument seems to run from subtlety, overemphasizing the inevitable piddling melodic content. If the comparison can be switched from fashion to cooking, the result would be a goulash in which somebody has poured an entire beaker of paprika. Still, the Mellotron does not fail to liven up some of the Kestrel tracks. The finale entitled "August Carol" has shown up on several lists of "greatest Mellotron performances ever," faithfully compiled by enthusiasts. The group also features an excellent singer, Tom Knowles, and a journeyman rocker named Dave Black who plays guitar and writes songs. He was a member of David Bowie's band for a few years and went on to form several other groups such as Goldie and 747. Black wrote all but one of the songs on Kestrel, none of the material being particularly original or absorbing. The overall sound is going to be what listeners will find either appealing or not, but either way there is no denying that as far as '70s progressive rock goes, Kestrel was the real thing. © Eugene Chadbourne, All Music Guide


Touch And Go


Touch And Go - I Find You Very Attractive - 1999 - V2

A great experimental jazz-pop album.Clever lyrics with excellent musicians and some good Latin and cool lounge touches make this a fun and very enjoyable album.If you're a jazz purist you may not like this album, but relax and give it a spin.You might just get to like it!


Straight to...Number One ... David Lowe, James Lynch, Vanessa Lancaster
Big Beat ... David Lowe, Steve Mellor
Ecoutez, Repetez ... David Lowe
Would You...? ... David Lowe
So Hot ... David Lowe, James Lynch, Grant Buckerfield, Vanessa Lancaster
Mein Freund Harvey (Sugar Daddy) ... David Lowe
Tango in Harlem ... David Lowe, Julia Fischer
Are You Talking About Me? ... David Lowe, Julia Fischer
Life's a Beach ... David Lowe, James Lynch
Thanks for Coming ... David Lowe
Would You...? [Trailermen Go to Rio Edit] ... David Lowe, James Lynch
Straight to... Number One [Dreamcatcher's Mix] ... David Lowe


David Lowe (vocals, keyboards, bass, drums); Alexa Motley, Julia Lara, Sandrine Henriot, Amaru Del Rio Romero, Ana Acicoly (vocals); Vo Fletcher (guitar); Sovra Wilson-Dickson (violin); Steve Mellor (clarinet, saxophone); James Lynch, Ted Emmett (trumpet); Andy Wood (trombone).


Ted Emmet (Trumpet), Charlie Gillett (A&R), Noel Summerville (Mastering), David Lowe (Bass), David Lowe (Arranger), David Lowe (Drums), David Lowe (Keyboards), David Lowe (Vocals), David Lowe (Producer), David Lowe (Engineer), David Lowe (Mixing), Tim Gordine (Editing), Touch & Go (Main Performer), Andy Wood (Trombone), James Lynch (Trumpet), James Lynch (Flugelhorn), Wilson Dickson, Sovra (Violin), Ana Accioly (Vocals), Jules Bromley (Producer), Jules Bromley (Mixing), Grant Buckerfield (Engineer), Cool Fish (Mixing), Jon Culshaw, Amaru DelRio Romero (Vocals), Gordon Neiki (A&R), Alexa Motley (Vocals), Steve Mellor (Clarinet), Steve Mellor (Sax (Alto)), Steve Mellor (Sax (Baritone)), Steve Mellor (Sax (Soprano)), Sandrine Henriot (Vocals), Julia Lara (Vocals), Vanessa Lancaster (Vocals)


Featuring the European hit single "Would You...?," "I Find You Very Attractive" (quotation marks included in the title) is for the most part lyrically built around the kind of catch phrases that people use as pickup lines at clubs and parties. So it comes as little surprise that these are matched to the kind of music you'd expect to hear at clubs and parties where such pickup lines form the backbone of conversation, and where bouncers are on hand to make sure that no one with the wrong haircut or shirt intrudes on the fun. This is a more curious and eclectic brew than many such discs, though, mixing sexy female spoken and sung vocals; jack-in-the-box samples, echoes, and effects; perky brass with vaguely Latin and swing jazz overtones; smoky cocktail lounge passages; the odd bit that wouldn't sound out of place on dub records; and more conventional modern dance percussion. When Caribbean accents are introduced in the brass, guitar, and rhythm, it's more akin to postmodern music to sip piña coladas to on beach cruises. It's clever, and the riffs are modestly catchy. There's also the nagging feeling that the music is aimed toward listeners who desperately aspire to nouveau riche chicness, but want to feel somewhat hip about doing so. The CD concludes with the Trailermen Go to Rio edit of "Would You..." and the Dreamcatcher's Mix of one of the disc's other tracks, "Straight to...Number One." © Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide
Real Name: David Lowe, Charlie Gillett, Gordon Nelki, Vanessa Lancaster, James Lynch
Profile: Touch And Go is a co-operation between television composer David Lowe, veteran radio presenter and music journalist Charlie Gillett and co-founder of Oval Music, Gordon Nelki.
the group is completed with two performers: Vanessa Lancaster (vocals) and James Lynch (trumpet).

Touch And Go is the progeny of an unholy alliance between television composer David Lowe, veteran radio presenter and music journalist Charlie Gillett and co-founder of Oval Music, Gordon Nelki.

Charlie and Gordon have wide-ranging tastes in popular music and a fondness for something just that bit different. Paul Hardcastle’s 19 was one of their earlier successes. Having worked together on the Dreamcatcher project, the trio conceived a new concept based around largely instrumental jazz-based tunes with an ‘economical’ use of lyrics — quite unconventional by today’s chart standards.

Influences for the project ranged from The Champs’ Tequila and Mongo Santamaria’s Watermelon Man to Louis Armstrong’s Dippermouth Blues. Within a few days, Dave had put together Would You…? using a sampled vocal clip and trumpet jazz licks played by James Lynch, over a Latin rhythm.

Released in October 1998, Would You…? reached number 3 in the UK charts, remained in the top ten for a month and subsequently became a hit all over Europe and many other parts of the world. The single sold half a million copies worldwide, and was included on literally hundreds of compilations whose total sales exceed ten million copies.

Touch And Go’s album, I Find You Very Attractive followed up the success of Would You…? and included three more singles Straight To Number One, So Hot, and Tango In Harlem, all of which are widely played on radio throughout Europe, especially in Eastern Europe where Touch and Go is one of the UK’s best-known acts.

About The Performers

Vanessa Lancaster, Vocalist
Vanessa Lancaster began ballet classes at the age of 4, gaining success in exams at the Royal Academy of Ballet in London. Shortly afterwards she began drama lessons in her free time and auditioned successfully for the Corona Stage School in London where she was educated until the age of 16. Vanessa completed her education at the Lucy Clayton Finishing School in London which was followed by 8 months working in the USA.

In London, Vanessa has worked as a voice-over artist for numerous UK TV commercials and has modelled both on the catwalk and for beauty products. Her other television credits include Emu’s World for ITV and the James Bond movie Octopussy.

Vanessa began singing professionally at the age of 15 when she teamed up with brother Shaz to form a band called Boys Behaving Badly whose drummer later became a member of Jamiroquai. Vanessa was, of course, the only girl member of the group! Once her vocal talents were discovered, Vanessa became a much in-demand singer on the London recording session scene, which led to a world tour with Urban Species.

Having sung on numerous jingles for producer and songwriter David Lowe, Vanessa was invited to collaborate on a new project Dave was working on which became Touch And Go, whose records have now become hits all over the world. Vanessa co-wrote the Touch And Go songs Straight To Number One, Big Beat and So Hot.

James Lynch, Trumpet
London-based trumpeter James Lynch was educated at the City Of Leeds College of Music where he gained a first-class degree in Jazz & Contemporary Music and won prizes for Outstanding Performance, Brass and Arranging. As a former member of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain, Jim won the Newman Cup at the age of 17 for Most Improved Player.

On moving to London he joined the National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Great Britain eventually becoming their lead trumpet player. Jim began his professional career with society dance bands in London’s Mayfair district before moving into the freelance areas of work such as musical theatre and recording. He has played in many of London’s West End musicals including Chicago, Starlight Express, Jesus Christ Superstar, Saturday Night Fever, and My Fair Lady.

In the world of pop music Jim has played in the big bands of Robbie Williams and for Babybird, Embrace, The Freestylers, Beverly Knight and also Missy Elliot. He has also played for Shirley Bassey and Michael Ball. Jim was brass arranger and first trumpet for the Spice Girls on their last UK tour, which was broadcast live on Sky TV from London’s Earls Court Arena. Recent clients include the Matthew Herbert Big Band, London rapper Dizzy Rascal, Engelbert Humperdink and opera singer Lesley Garrett.

Jim has played on many TV shows in the UK and abroad and his trumpet can be heard on many theme tunes and TV commercials too. Recently he played on the soundtrack and wrote four arrangements for the Kevin Spacey film Beyond The Sea. He has worked with composer and producer David Lowe for a number of years and can still be heard on the theme for BBC's Cash In The Attic. He was invited by Dave to collaborate on a new project, which eventually became Touch And Go. James co-wrote the Touch And Go songs Would You…?, So Hot and Life’s A Beach. © 2000-2005 KpNemo.Ru www.kpnemo.ru/music/2007/04/03/touch_and_go__1999_i_find_you_very_attractive/

Uriah Heep


Uriah Heep - Acoustically Driven [LIVE] [IMPORT] - 2001 - Classic Rock Legends

Inspired by the MTV Unplugged series, the seminal metal band Uriah Heep performed live at the Mermaid Theater in London om 9th December 2000 in a rare acoustic performance. The Heep ensemble featured special guest Ian Anderson among others in this once in a lifetime event. Includes "Why Did You Go", "The Easy Road", "Echoes in the Dark," "More Fool You" and twelve more great tracks.The orchestral backing is brilliant, and The Heep have never sounded better.This is a stunning unplugged recording rated very highly by A.O.O.F.C


Introduction (0:47)
Why Did You Go (3:59)
The Easy Road (2:41)
Echoes In The Dark (4:44)
Come Back To Me (4:40)
Cross That Line (5:56)
The Golden Palace (8:17)
The Shadows And The Wind (4:30)
Wonderworld (4:33)
Different World (5:03)
Circus (4:21)
Blind Eye (3:37)
Traveller In Time (2:50)
More Fool You (3:30)
Lady In Black (6:15)
Medley: The Wizard/Paradise/Circle of. Hands (9:24)


Mick Box / guitar, vocals
Lee Kerslake / drums, vocals
Trevor Bolder / bass guitar, vocals
Phil Lanzon / keyboards, vocals
Bernie Shaw / lead singer
Special guest Ian Anderson

The Uriah Heep Classic Rock Music Ensemble are

Liz Cheyen Liew / first violin
Sarah Chi Liew / second violin
Saskia Tomkins / viola
Pauline Kirke / cello
String arrangements by Pip Williams and Phil Lanzon
Stefan Hannigan / uillean pipes and percussion
Melvin Duffy / pedal steel and slide guitar
Kim Chandler / flautist on 'The Easy Road', 'The Golden Palace' and 'More Fool You'
Pip Williams / additional acoustic guitar on 'Lady In Black'
Emma Robbins - Kim Chandler - Billie Godfrey / backing vocalists


Acoustically Driven is a fabulous collection of all the favs, except this time you get to hear how different they sound unplugged. Any song that was originally electric takes on a different personality when it’s toned down and rendered with different colors and textures in an acoustic setting. It’s comparable to taking a classic painting and grabbing your brush and painting right over the top of it. Most songs are strummed out on an acoustic guitar or pounded out on the piano before they reach fruition, so essentially what happens is the music comes around full circle. It’s always a pleasure to experience what a creator hears first hand in the development of a song. “Wonderworld” pulled out some memories from the attic for me, it was the first Uriah Heep album I ever bought, and from that point on I got everything else by them that I could get my hands on. All the songs sound really good unplugged, and the audience seems to think so as well. The group is backed by the “Uriah Heep Classic Rock Music Ensemble,” which consists of strings, including the cello, viola, and violins. Having that kind of back drop softens up the once rocking tunes and eases in the acoustic guitars and keyboards to make for a beautiful marriage between rock music and orchestration © Keith "Muzikman" Hannaleck, March 2002 © Copyright 2002 ProgressiveWorld.net Keith Hannaleck www.progressiveworld.net/uriahheep.html



Waldeck - Balance Of The Force - 1998 - Spray Records

Brilliant 1999 debut album for Klaus Waldeck, a producer for Vienna's Spray Records, home to work by Kruder & Dorfmeister & Count Basic.

Austria's Klaus Waldeck finds perfect harmony on his debut full-length, BALANCE OF THE FORCE. Along with Joy Malcolm (ex-Incognito) on lead vocals, Waldeck transcends sounds and styles into a rich, deep musical collage. Using the best of techno, house, acid jazz, and cerebral electronica, Waldeck finds himself blazing a trail many will no doubt follow in the months to come. "Defenceless" is a tingly, sultry blend of acidic tones and mystical grooves. Malcolm's vocals add the beautiful imagery the song uses to fully take control of your mind, while the subtle, intricate grooves trip and hop around your subconscious and have you thinking solely of the music. "Children of the Ghetto" is another sultry stinger. It's deep, infectious grooves trigger thoughts and visuals in your mind like no other while the sound textures jump around in the air at every click of the music. "Aquarius" and "Moon", both co-produced by Kruder and Dorfmeister, have a very similar effect. The tingly percussion trips around in your head while the steamy vocals have your ears fixated on the sounds coming out of your stereo. © Alex Steininger Copyright © 1997-2007, In Music We Trust, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Though it comes from a previously unheard producer, Balance of the Force certainly begins on a high note, with the down-tempo soul of "Defenceless." While Waldeck himself takes the keyboards (both electric and standard piano), the deep groove of what sounds like a live drum set frames the yearning vocals of Joy Malcolm. It's that rare thing in electronic circles: the perfect integration of vocal track and production, with both pulling equal weight to set the mood. Amidst a beautiful, effortless transition, Waldeck moves on to "Spy Like an Angel," with male vocalist Brian Amos doing much the same as Malcolm did one track earlier. Either of these voices appears on all but two of the tracks here, the exceptions being the eerie, cinematic instrumentals "Slaapwagen" and "Moon." Fellow downbeat maestros Kruder & Dorfmeister help out on production for the sublime "Aquarius," and except for the slight reliance on a previously trademarked sound, Balance of the Force stands as one of the most quietly beautiful records of vocal trip-hop -- just slightly behind masterpieces like Portishead's Dummy and Massive Attack's Mezzanine. © John Bush, All Music Guide


01. Defenceless - Joy Malcolm, Klaus Waldeck

02. Spy Like An Angel - Klaus Waldeck

03. Children Of The Ghetto - Eddie Amoo, Chris Amoo

04. Slaapwagen - Klaus Waldeck

05. Aquarius - Galt MacDermot, James Rado, Gerome Ragni

06. Northern Lights - Klaus Waldeck

07. Wake Up - Thomas Morris, Klaus Waldeck

08. Superpopstar - Brian Amos, Klaus Waldeck

09. Death Of A Piano Salesman - Klaus Waldeck

10. Moon - Klaus Waldeck


Klaus Waldeck
Brian Amos
Joy Malcolm


Richard Dorfmeister (Producer), Peter Kruder (Producer), Peter Legat (Guitar), Joy Malcolm (Vocals), Waldeck (Main Performer), Brian Amos (Vocals), Stefan Morth (Flute), Stefan Morth (Producer), Stefan Morth (Drum Arrangements), Uptight (Producer), Klaus Waldeck (Keyboards), Klaus Waldeck (Producer)


Jimi Hendrix


Jimi Hendrix - Good Times - 1969 - Label unknown

Info urgently meeded on this "Jimi Hendrix"album from 1969?There is supposed to be a cd in circulation with the follwing comment - "To obtain the highest possible quality, some tracks have been re-recorded by the original artists or several members of the original group".Another cd in circulation does not have these comments, and allegedly they are all original tracks.Can any Hendrix connoisseur please post some info on this album.It is a good album,and it would be great to set the record straight.

The comments after each track may or may not be true.A.O.O.F.C needs your help!

1.Good Times - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
2.Voices - Fake.No Jimi involvement
3 Suspicious - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
4. Whipper - Recorded end of 1963. Jimi Hendrix: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
5. Bessie Mae - Recorded end of 1963. Jimi Hendrix: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
6. Soul Food - Recorded end of 1963. Jimi Hendrix: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
7. Voice in the Wind - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
8. Free Spirit - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
9. Good Feeling - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
10. Hot Trigger - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
11. Psycho - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
12. Come On Baby part 1 - Don't know. Could it be the Isley Brothers with Jimi at 05.08.1964?
13. Come On Baby part 2 - Don't know. Could it be the Isley Brothers with Jimi at 05.08.1964?
14. Night Life - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
15. You Got It - Fake. No Jimi involvement; Herman Hitson: git; Lonnie Youngblood: sax, voc; and others
16. Woke up In the Morning - Scene Club, New York, 06.03.1968,Jimi Hendrix: git, voc; Jim Morisson: voc; and others (NOT Johnny Winter)
17. Lime Lime - Scene Club, New York, 06.03.1968,Jimi Hendrix: git, voc; Jim Morisson: voc; and others (NOT Johnny Winter)
18. People's People - Scene Club, New York, 06.03.1968,Jimi Hendrix: git, voc; Jim Morisson: voc; and others (NOT Johnny Winter)
19. Whoa'eeh - Scene Club, New York, 06.03.1968,Jimi Hendrix: git, voc; Jim Morisson: voc; and others (NOT Johnny Winter)



Harmonium - Si on avait besoin d'une cinquième saison - 1975 - PolyGram

An obscure classic of Canadian 1970's Prog Rock.The album is a beautiful blend of folk and symphonic progressive sounds.


Side 1

1."Vert" (5:35) - Le Printemps Et L'arrivée Des Couleurs
2."Dixie (Une Toune Qui Me Revient)" (3:26) - L'été Et L'arrivée De La Chaleur
3."Depuis L'automne" (10:28) - L'automne Et Le Départ De Bien Des Choses

Side 2

4."En Pleine Face" (4:50) - L'hiver Et Le Départ De Bien Des Gens
5."Histoires Sans Paroles" (17:12) - La Cinquième Saison
a."L'isolement" (2:47)
b."L'appel" (2:53)
c."La Rencontre" (1:40)
d."L'union" (3:07)
e."Le Grand Bal" (6:45)

MUSICIANS (On This Album)

- Pierre Daigneault / flute, piccolo, Soprano saxophone, clarinet
- Serge Fiori / guitar, flute, zither harp, bass drum, vocals
- Serge Locat / piano, mellotron, synthesizer
- Michel Normandeau / guitar, accordion, vocals
- Louis Valois / bass guitar, electric piano, vocals
- Judy Richard / vocalisations (5)


Serge Fiori
Louis Valois
Serge Locat
Robert Stanley
Denis Farmer
Libert Subirana
Monique Fauteux


Michel Normandeau
Pierre Daigneault
Jeff Fisher

BIO (Wikipedia)

Harmonium was one of the most influential rock bands from Quebec. Lead vocalist and guitarist Serge Fiori met Michel Normandeau (vocals and guitar) in a theatre music meeting. Later on in 1973 they met bassist Louis Valois and became Harmonium. In November of 1973 the group performed their first air play on CHOM-FM. They played 3 tracks: "Pour un instant", "Un musicien parmi tant d'autres", and "Un refrain parmi tant d'autres". The first 2 songs were demos at the time and were later recorded professionally to be put on their first album, Harmonium. The last song was a sequel to "Un musicien parmi tant d'autres", but never made the album cut, staying as a b-side. Apart from the album, one single was recorded at the time: "Pour un instant", featuring 2 tracks (one on each side), the title song and "100,000 Raisons", only released on the CD version of the album almost 20 years later.After many little shows and a small tour played all over Quebec, they were up for the second album. The album, sometimes known as Les Cinq Saisons, was actually named Si on avait besoin d'une cinquième saison. There were five songs on the album, one representing each season and the last song being the "new" season. For this album the band had three new members: Pierre Daigneault, playing the flutes, sax, and clarinets, Serge Locat, handling the piano and synths, and Judy Richards, who sings the melody of the fifth season in "Histoires sans Paroles".The third disk, L'Heptade, is about the seven states of consciousness of a person (during a day, or during a life). The first and the last song are named "Comme un fou" and "Comme un sage", indicating a progression towards wisdom.


The Fifth Season
While Montreal was sleeping Spring slid into her bed slowly, thinking that large events always take place at night.Only upon awaking did the sleeping city realise that someone was dancing at her feet. To show that she could still stand on her own, Montreal started imitating these fascinating dance steps. Spring led the dance towards a mirror where Montreal saw her own reflection and was dismayed. Sleep had scarred her face. She also realised that she had slept in borrowed, tattered clothing . Hers had probably been burned. She decided to frolic in the nude for the rest of the morning. The few people who still cared for her watched in slient consternation.
While Montreal danced, she brought with her a great fare. She was reminded that it was her forefathers' birthday. She invited everyone into her ancestral home. She was particularly charming on this evening, full of warmth and caring. Everyone fought to be near her warmth. Montreal was inebriated and men fought over her.She was so pleased at the attention that she danced for them while Summer watched and cried in silence.
While Montreal celebrated, Autumn crept in through the back door and turned out all the lights.Strangely diguised people, donning bizarre masks took advantage of the situation to rape Montreal while her friends were unaware, lost in their own drunken stupors. Her dress was torn from her body as she was violated. After the ordeal, she was dressed up in old rags and her face was scarred using a broken bottle. Unable to contain herself, she screamed in silence.
She struggled to lift herself up but her battered body betrayed her will.Not fully understanding what had happened to her, she started hallucinating and drifted into a coma.
While Montreal lay in a catatonic state, Winter took hold of her. Lost in her coma she reached a state resembling madness and freely and unabashedly recreated her world.Lost in delerium, she spoke of a Fifth Season.It was wonderful.In between sighs of satisfaction, she wished everyone this same fate, realising that a person who has reached madness can never be harmed again.
While Montreal was sleeping, Spring slid into her bed....
- Serge Fiori, February 1975-(translated from French by the reviewer)
Si On Avait Besoin D'une Cinquieme Saison , 'If a fifth season were necessary', may be the single greatest progressive rock record ever to come from Quebec. By 1975 Harmonium had already established themselves in Quebec as THE premiere musical act. Their self-titled debut disc had already produced political and cultural anthems which are still held near and dear to the Quebecois heart 30 years later. It would have been easy for Serge Fiori and Co. to remain in this vein and assure themselves continued success. But these were the 1970's and rock was about exploration, change, and improvement.
Broken down into 5 tracks, representing the 4 seasons and the imagined, utopian, fifth season, this record marks a departure for this band from the purely folk influenced music of their debut , and into the realms of progressive rock. Bands like Genesis, Gentle Giant, and Pink Floyd had all been making headway with the Quebecois youth and Harmonium decided to broaden their sound and incorporate many of the instruments they heard from these British bands. Mellotrons, mandolins, flutes,zither harps,accordeons, dulcimers, and electric pianos were added to the mix ; creating a lush pastoral sound which became the benchmark by which all future Quebecois progressive outfits would be measured.
VERT: Spring and the arrival of colours.
Vocal harmonizing and ethereal flutes dominate this track which overflows with life and hope, brought on the by the arrival of spring. Like spring, the track ends a little sooner than expected and gives way to summer.
DIXIE: The arrival of the summer heat. Short and sweet , with a southern touch. Whimsical number which has a hoedown feel to it. Like summer it seems to end almost as quickly as it begins.
DEPUIS L'AUTOMNE: The arrival of autumn and the departure of many things.
Long , melancholic track which dwells on the permanence of change. As the days shorten and leaves dry up and fly away, we're often left to ponder about opportunities missed. As we bundle up and huddle for warmth in our homes, we seem to disconnect from each other and enter moments of quiet introspection.
EN PLEINE FACE: Winter and the departure of many people.
A haunting melody which has a cold detached feel to it. Fiori's voice sounds like a solitary cry in the face of a raging, freezing wind. The cold bleakness of winter has many people seeking a brief refuge of warmer climate leaving those left behind to feel even more isolated .
Spanning nearly the entire length of all the other tracks combined, this song tells the tale of the idealistic fifth season. Words are not necessary as all beings communicate through a general well-being. This track may be the one which caught the attention of progressive rock enthusiasts around the world and made the Harmonium name part of the prog vernacular. Filled with pastoral melodies, luxuriant arrangements, and ethereal musical passages; this track single-handedly defines the Quebecois progressive movement of the 1970's, and closes a superlative musical journey.
Harmonium were not done yet. This disc was merely a precursor to their magnum opus, the double disc L'Heptade which pushed the boundaries even further. The argument as to which of these records is the better has been debated on many progressive rock forums. In this reviewer's opinion, both are essential for anyone exploring the 1970's Quebecois music scene. © Yves Dube © Sea of Tranquility www.seaoftranquility.org/sections.php?op=viewarticle&artid=97

As it turns out, the Quebecois progressive rock scene of the 70s managed to turn out a pretty impressive array of great albums, albeit ones that are known only to the more intrepid collectors. Unfortunately, many of these great works have either yet to see CD reissue, or have gone long out of print, making Canada one of the more underappreciated corners of world as far as good prog is concerned. Thankfully, Harmonium, along with a few others such as Et Cetera and Opus 5, have had their CD reissues remain relatively accessible to those not willing to catch a bus to Montreal in order to schlep through the vinyl bins there. As one of the scene's most important bands, the group is really an ideal place to start exploring the country's surprisingly significant contributions. And as arguably their finest album, Si on Avait Besoin D'une Cinquieme Saison makes for a great entry point.
The album presents itself as stunningly beautiful amalgamation of folk and symphonic progressive. Not knowing a whole lot about French folk music, I would be hard pressed to draw a direct comparison, but suffice it to say that this is what I would imagine it to sound like. The emphasis is on exquisite, lyrical melodies, layered acoustic guitars, delicate flute and pleasant, unassuming vocals. The symphonic progressive element is not to be underestimated, and indeed the sweeping "orchestral" feel, due primarily to omnipresent mellotron and shimmering piano, is a dominant element. The overtly French lyricism makes comparisons to the France's symphonic scene tempting, but those bands were always much darker and more dramatic. Rather, Harmonium seems to adopt that sort of "pastoral" sense common to many English and Italian bands. Celeste's self titled album jumps to mind in particular. Oh, and one thing. No drums. Ever. Initially this threw me off a bit, and I found that the almost complete lack of anything that "rocked", the rather effeminate album cover, and the flowery, fluffy melodicism indicated an album that lacked any kind of edge.
So yeah, this one took some time to grow on me. On early listens, I saw it as infuriatingly stereotypical and dainty. I was wrong of course. Part of this has to do with the fact that the magnificent centerpiece "Histoires Sans Paroles" is saved for last. Talk about a gorgeous piece of music. Primarily instrumental, sublime acoustic guitar parts lead the way, as flute and piano overlay the structure will beautiful, interwoven textures and melodies. Towering spires of mellotron coat the entire affair, which will unfailingly drive symphonic progressive devotees to fits of ecstasy. Exquisite. The first half of the album is comparatively less exhilarating, but for the most part still excellent. Only the rather banal, cheesy jaunt of "Dixie" sticks out as a low point really. Once you get into the band's style the entire album works very well, and given its relative availability, I'd say this makes a nice starter to begin exploring the rich Quebecois tradition. © Greg Northrup [January 2002]
© 2002, The Giant Progweed www.progweed.net/reviews/h/h.html
Released a year after Harmonium's debut album, Si On Avait Besoin d'une Cinquième Saison (If We Needed a Fifth Season) marked an impressive departure from the guitar trio folk-pop the band first played in cabarets. The first difference is the addition of two new members, reedist/flutist Pierre Daigneault and keyboardist Serge Locat (still no drummer). Second, the album is structured on a concept revolving around seasons, the first four pieces representing each one of them. Third, the fifth piece (or season) is a 17-minute epic suite. This is not folk-rock anymore, but a very personal form of progressive rock rooted in folk (the closest comparison would be early Strawbs). Special care has been put into the arrangements; the song "Dixie," a spirited summer tune, features dozens of instruments coming in and out, topped by Locat's grand piano solo (and the only apparition of percussion on the whole album, a hi-hat hit and a bass drum kick). Songs have gained in length and complexity, the use of Ondes-Martenot waves (courtesy of prog rock band Etcetera's Marie Bernard), mellotron, piano, and flute add another dimension to band's sound and point toward what L'Heptade would be. At the same time, acoustic guitars still provide the backbone of the songs but they are not easy-to-learn campfire tunes anymore. Vocalist Judy Richard guests on the beautiful "Histoires Sans Paroles" ("Stories Without Words"), one of Québec's finest progressive rock moments, once again without a single percussion sound. Between the folk simplicity of Harmonium and the symphonic grandeur of L'Heptade, Si On Avait Besoin d'une Cinquième Saison gave the band its unique voice. This remains one of the best transitional albums ever recorded and an essential item in Québec's music history. © 1996-2007, Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates

This Quebec-based Progressive rock band, who sang in French, has a very apt name in HARMONIUM. The core was a folk trio formed by guitarists Serge FIORI and Michel NORMANDEAU, and bassist Louis VALOIS. Their career was short (five years) and they released three studio albums in the mid-Seventies and a posthumous live album. They started off as a jazzy and typically French folk trio but began to delve into more progressive material on their brilliant second album, "Si on avait besoin d'une cinquième saison" ("If We Needed a Fifth Season"). They are regarded as one of the finest exponents (along with POLLEN and MANEIGE) of the "Golden Era of Quebec Progressive Music" Scene. © www.progarchives.com/artist.asp?id=619



Gnidrolog - Lady Lake - 1972 - RCA

One of the best original prog albums of the 1970's.Gnidrolog combines the bluesy prog and folky flute sounds of Jethro Tull with the dark atmospheric and wind instrumental sound of Van Der Graff Generator to create a sublime album.A forgotten classic.


1. I could never be a soldier
2. Ship
3. A dog with no collar
4. Lady Lake
5. Same dreams
6. Social embarrassment


Stewart Goldring / lead guitar
Colin Goldring / rhythm guitar, vocals, recorder, tenor horn
Nigel Pegrum / percussion, flute, oboe
John Earle / soprano, tenor, baritone saxes, flute, lead vocal on "Social Embarassment"
Peter Cowling / bass guitar, cellos
Charlotte Fendrich / piano on "Same Dreams"


"Lady Lake" was a slightly more polished and simplistic album than the debut. The opening track "I Could Never Be a Soldier" have some Gentle Giant-ish melody lines and some very Tull-ish flute playing, but is really not all that complex despite its 12 minutes. "Ship" reminds a little of the more atmospheric moments of Hammill/VDGG, and is another highlight on this obscure classic. The title-track seems to be more jazz-influenced, and is probably the least accessible track on the album. And "Social Embarrassment" sounds more Gentle Giant than GG themselves. The album also featured some shorter and more mellow pieces like "A Dog With No Collar". And yes, Gnidrolog was also one of the few progressive rock bands without any keyboards at all, but with such excellency as this you'll not miss it. Impossible to dislike if you like the three mentioned bands. © 1998-2007 vintageprog.com
This is the second and last Gnidrolog album (not counting the 'Live' album of the same year) before they split for a long 17 years (read the "Gnosis" - Gnidrolog'2000 - detailed review). So, the only Gnidrolog album I haven't listened to is their debut. I remember just a few bands in the history of Progressive Rock that suddenly ceased to exist after they released a masterpiece or at least the best album in their discography. Apart from Gnidrolog, these first of all are UK (after "Danger Money"), Argent (after "Counterpoint"), Light (after "Light"), and a few more, maybe. There will be some new "Top" sections on Progressor, including "The Most Underrated / Overrated Bands In the History of Prog". I see, you are keen-witted readers, and you are quite right - you'll see these three forementioned bands exactly among the underrated ones...
First off, "Lady Lake" is the work of unique originality. In spite of the presence of already universally recognized (a lot of) Titans and (lots of) other quite strong and original bands cultivating the same fields of Progressive Rock, "Lady Lake" is full of Inspiration and free of influences.
Recently reissued on CD, this is an album of excellent sound quality, which is quite rare for those years. As a real Classic For the Future, "Lady Lake" today is even more than simply listenable work (of genius). While all its vocal themes are excellent, all the instrumental parts within each separate song are simply outstanding with their powerful (real!) jams, full of incredible, diverse interplays between all the instrument(alist)s but especially between saxophones / flutes and lead guitar.
As well as in the case of "Gnosis", (and in spite of the fact that they are) twin-brothers Stewart (lead guitar, backing vocals) and Colin Goldring (rhythm guitar, lead vocals) composed all these songs separately from each other, too, as they were / still are going quite diffferent ways in composing. And if instrumental arrangements (that are made by all the band members, though) in all their songs have some obvious similar structures, Colin prefers more melodic vocal themes, whereas Stewart uses his brother's lyrics for more adventurous singing. The final song is a purely instrumental piece played virtuostically by Stewart on acoustic guitar only. This is one a few real gems of that 'style' together with Mood For the Day (by Steve Howe, from "Fragile", Yes-1972-I), Horizons (by Steve Hackett, from "Foxtrot", Genesis-1972), ...
Of course, the fact that "Lady Lake" was performed with just a few piano touches (ie actually without keyboards), is maybe, even maximizing its distinctly original sound, but to be honest, I'd love if Nessa Glen (female keyboardist for the newest Gnidrolog album) could provide all across the "Lady Lake" (except for the last track, of course!) with her very effective keyboard passages for the next reissue (and I believe in it) of this - if not criminally (I consider it is simply impossibly to use such a word and all the likes at least with regard to Progressive / Classical Music - these being the best manifestations of the most constructive Energy in the world!), then inadmissibly - underrated masterpiece.
© VM. September 11, 2000 http://www.progressor.net/review/gnidrolog_1972.html
Gnidrolog are one of the more overlooked bands that took part in the progressive rock explosion in Britain around 1971-73. Why the band is nearly forgotten nowadays is a mystery to me. When Mike Prete first played me Lady Lake, my jaw literally dropped. Expecting some banal proto-progressive stuff, I was pleasantly surprised to hear powerful, full-blown progressive rock with an dark, original feel. The best comparisons I can make would be to groups like Van der Graaf Generator, Jethro Tull and Gentle Giant, and Gnidrolog often meets the same level of brilliance as those bands. Of course, it would be mistaken to say that Gnidrolog were simply heavily influenced by these bands, since the group was coexisting and rose to prominence in tandem with those groups. In fact, judging from their gig history, Gnidrolog were fairly integral to the prog scene at the time, playing shows with everyone from Colosseum, Wishbone Ash and Greenslade to Gentle Giant, Soft Machine, King Crimson and even Magma. So why hasn't anyone ever heard of these guys? Why are they forever condemned to obscurity, to be uncovered years later by only the most intrepid of prog archaeologists? Well, maybe the fact that they only released two albums had something to do with it. Besides that, I'll be damned if I can figure it out. Actually, Gnidrolog recently reformed and put out a new studio album, Gnosis, which has gotten some good reviews, although I haven't heard it yet. Still, pick up In Spite of Harry's Toenail or better yet, their opus Lady Lake, and prepare to be bowled over.
This is a very surprising and overlooked album of dark progressive rock from the early 70s. Gnidrolog sounds like a mixture of early Jethro Tull and Van der Graaf Generator, with heavy emphasis on both flute and saxophone. Much of the songs are structured around fairly conventional vocal melodies, with cool lyrics backed by familiar song structures, before breaking into incredible chaotic jams full of flute, sax and guitar interplay. The opening two tracks, "I Could Never Be a Soldier" and "Ship," are mindblowing, full of dark melodies led by Colin Goldring, whose emotional tone bears a passing resemblance to Peter Hammill's.
Overall, this a vastly underrated album that must have been overshadowed by the other prog gems released at that same time. Lady Lake is a great work what will appeal to fans looking for a unique, dark mix of early Tull and VdGG.
© Greg Northrup 7/8/2001 http://gnosis2000.net/reviews/gnidrolog.htm

This is an obscure classic from the 70s recently re-released on CD. Lady Lake is a dark symphonic epic in the vein of early blues-inspired progressive rock. The band draws from the sounds of early Tull, Gentle Giant and Van Der Graaf Generator, while adding a more folk/medieval touch due to the prominent addition of woodwind instruments. The only keyboard presence is a small bit of piano on "Same Dreams," but it is not missed.
The majority of the songs start out as rather typical rock pieces of the time, but build in intensity and complexity. This is most evident on "I Could Never Be A Soldier," which starts out as a rather simple piece, but is then transformed into a chaotic maelstrom of haunting vocals, wailing sax and pounding bass. Colin Goldring's vocal delivery is reminiscent of Peter Hammill, especially evident and powerful on "Ship." Some have complained that the lyrics sound dated, being that they are sort of idealistic in the late 60s/early 70s way, but I don't mind them, and they shouldn't detract from the music at all.
The title track shows the band at their most complex instrumentally, with different stylistic variations throughout the piece, which includes a jazz-influenced introduction with woodwinds that sound like brass instruments at points. The rest of the song takes on a more Van Der Graaf vibe to it with a powerful dirge and chaotic squeaks and squawks from the sax and cello. The final track, "Social Embarrassment" is also full of interesting instrumental and vocals ideas, and shows the most resemblance to Gentle Giant.
This is a fine example of dark symphonic prog with overtones of early Tull, VdGG, Gentle Giant, as well as medieval influences. Highly recommended to fans of aforementioned bands and early symphonic prog in general. © Mike Prete 7/8/2001 http://gnosis2000.net/reviews/gnidrolog.htm

BIO (Wikipedia)

Gnidrolog is a British progressive rock band with a unique sound that is often compared to better known bands such as Van Der Graaf Generator, Jethro Tull and Gentle Giant.The band was founded in 1969 by twin brothers Colin and Stewart Goldring, who were joined by drummer Nigel Pegrum who came over from Spice (the band that would later evolve into Uriah Heep), Peter Cowling on bass, John Earle on vocals and Charlotte Fendrich on piano. They came up with the strange band name by mixing up the brothers' surnames. In 1972, they released both their debut and sophomore album, In Spite of Harry's Toe-Nail and Lady Lake, before disbanding due to a lack of commercial success. Despite having played gigs with fairly well-known bands like Colosseum, King Crimson, Gentle Giant, Wishbone Ash, Soft Machine and Magma in their brief career, they have always remained relatively obscure.After disbanding, the Goldring brothers formed punk rock band The Pork Dukes in 1976 and later went on to do session work, as did the other members. After a break of 27 years they got back together in 1999 and released their third studio album entitled Gnosis in 2000.


Canned Heat


Canned Heat - House Of Blue Lights - 1998 - Going For A Song

As far as I know, this was a German issue.There may have been another release with the same title with 12 tracks.It's an excellent album and I would appreciate any info on this recording.Posts are very welcome.


Can't Hold On
Straight Ahead
House Of Blue Lights
Just Got To Be There
You Just Got To Rock
Human Condition
She's Looking Good
Open Up Your Back Door
Wrapped Up
I've Got My Mojo Working
Louise Blues
Strut My Stuff
Hot Honey




Moca - Tempomat - 2006 - Blue Flame

Great album from Moca with a unique mix of downbeat funk, nu jazz, and soul.The 5 musicians from Germany combine music from the electronic box and handmade music: jazzy guitars, Hammond, Rhodes-Piano, synthesis and percussions.
"Tempomat" (German word for cruise control) is the long expected second production from Moca. 12 tracks settled somewhere between Downbeat, NuJazz, Electro and Pop but beyond all cliché, always groovy and danceable. For the first time Moca enriches its audio cosmos on three selected titles with the voice of the Australian singer Ingrid Campbell.Tempomat includes a sampling of famous tracks including Stanley Turrentine’s "Storm" and Wes Montgomery’s "Caravan". Features excerpts of an interview with Pee Wee Ellis & Fred Wesley.

MOCA are: Christian Becker: Programming, vintage Keyboards, Synthesizers; Martin Becker: Guitar; Ralf Eichenauer: Synthesizers, Percussion; Christoph Kloppenburg: Guitar; Peykan Razani: Percussion


01. Diggin'
02. Organ King
03. Post It
04. Downhill
05. Tanzglätte
06. Lounge Lizard
07. Rappelkiste
08. Mipper
09. Jaguar
10. Kleine Träumerei
11. Latein
12. Entspanner


Martin Becker - Guitar · Martin Becker - Artwork · Martin Becker - Group Member · Michael Schwabe - Mastering · Christian Becker - Synthesizer · Christian Becker - Keyboards · Christian Becker - Programming · Christian Becker - Producer · Christian Becker - Vibraphone · Christian Becker - Group Member




Dzyan - Electric Silence - 1974 - Bellaphon

Dzyan's final album is a masterpiece of 70's krautrock.This is a brilliant recording.An incredible mix of jazz fusion and space rock with a touch of eastern rock thrown into the blend.An absolute gem and one of the best prog rock albums ever recorded.


1. Back to where we come (8:59)
2. A day in my life (4:04)
3. The road not taken (4:55)
4. Khali (4:56)
5. For Earthly thinking (9:38)
6. Electric silence (4:30)
Peter Giger / drums, percussion
Reinhard Karwatky / bass, keyboards
Eddy Marron / guitar, sitar, saxophone


The acid is tripping on itself!Simply spectacular! Dzyan incorporates krautrock freakouts, Indian sitar, and jazz-rock fusion guitar into a kind of psychedelic world-groove. Other krautrock incorporates world music (ex: Can with their Ethnological Forgery Series) but this is a much smoother blend. And no, Dzyan is not just a bunch of stoner kids who got too much freedom in the studio, they are highly technical players (as the Zappa-esque jazz of the title track amply proves). Also, like Zappa's ilk, they have a knack for crafting meticulous compositions that sound like they were improvised on the spot! My favorite tracks are probably "Khali" with its 'mellotrons from hell' and 'For Earthly Thinking" with those bizarre gulping noises. Review © TheGreatGlorph Copyright © Prog Archives, All rights reserved
This esoteric instrumental(no vocals) krautrock gem strains my descriptive abilities, but what a fantastic and unique sound! with ethnic and traditional percussion, I suppose some of their distinguishing characteristics would be the development of rhythmic tempos from a sort of chamber style pulse to driving propulsion, modeled on an eastern styled raga; with a variety of eastern instruments and motifs ranging from european folk to sitar jams to very krautrock freakout style passages to a burgeoning jazz fusion style. there is a lot of what today would be called world music (released in 1973) but the styles are so integrated and complex that the results sound quite avant garde and freaky in true krautrock spirit! There is some quite virtuous and unorthodox musicianship throughout the recording that are quite challenging melodically(kind of like what bitches brew might sound like if played backwards) with fine guitar passages and a trace of synthesizer, but with a consistent melodic undercurrent. very rewarding and worth your time and patience. One of the finest and most challenging pieces of music to come from Germany in the 70's. Review © wooty (warren nelson). Copyright © Prog Archives, All rights reserved


Robert Nighthawk

Robert Nighthawk - Black Angel Blues 1948-1964 - 1991 - Charly

A relatively unknown name in the blues world, but a very important one.He never achieved much commercial success but his great singing style and slide guitar expertise influenced many other musicians.Many of his songs are now blues standards.


01. My Sweet Lovin' Woman
02. Down The Line
03. Sweet Black Angel
04. Handsome Lover
05. She Knows How To Love A Man
06. Annie Lee Blues
07. Sugar Papa
08. Return Mail Blues
09. Good News
10. Six Three O
11. Prison Bound
12. Jackson Town Gal
13. Sorry My Angel
14. Someday
15. Memory Of Sonny Boy
16. Special Delivery Man
17. Shady Lane Woman
18. A Woman On Every Street
19. Sawdust Bottom
20. Ash Street Boggie
21. Mean Mistreatin' Woman
22. Lonesome Day Blues


Robert Nighthawk (Guitar), Robert Nighthawk (Vocals), Robert Nighthawk (Main Performer), Forest City Joe (Harmonica), Forest City Joe (Vocals)


Of all the pivotal figures in blues history, certainly one of the most important was Robert Nighthawk (b. Robert Lee McCollum (30 November 1909 in Helena, Arkansas).
He bridged the gap between Delta and Chicago blues effortlessly, taking his slide cues from Tampa Red and stamping them with a Mississippi edge learned first hand from his cousin, Houston Stackhouse. Though he recorded from the '30s into the early '40s under a variety of names -- Robert Lee McCoy, Rambling Bob, Peetie's Boy -- he finally took his lasting sobriquet of Robert Nighthawk from the title of his first record, "Prowling Night Hawk." It should be noted that the huge lapses in the man's discography are direct results of his rambling nature, taciturnity, and seeming disinterest in making records. Once you got him into a studio, the results were almost always of a uniform excellence. But it might be two years or more between sessions.

Nighthawk never achieved the success of his more celebrated pupils, Muddy Waters and Earl Hooker, finding himself to be much happier to be working one nighters in taverns and the Maxwell Street open market on Sundays. He eventually left Chicago for his hometown of Helena, AR, where he briefly took over the King Biscuit Radio Show after Sonny Boy Williamson died, while seemingly working every small juke joint that dotted the landscape until his death from congestive heart failure in 1967. Robert Nighthawk is not a name that regularly gets bandied about when discussing the all-time greats of the blues. But well it should, because his legacy was all-pervasive; his resonant voice and creamy smooth slide guitar playing (played in standard tuning, unusual for a bluesman) would influence players for generations to come and many of his songs would later become blues standards. © Cub Koda, All Music Guide

He left home at an early age to become a busking musician, and after a period wandering through southern Mississippi settled for a time in Memphis, Tennessee. There he played with local orchestras and musicians, such as the Memphis Jug Band. A particular influence was Houston Stackhouse, from whom he learnt to play slide guitar, and with whom he appeared on the radio in Jackson, Mississippi.After further travels through Mississippi, he found it advisable to take his mother's name, and as Robert Lee McCoy he moved to St. Louis, Missouri. Local musicians with whom he played included Henry Townsend, Big Joe Williams, and Sonny Boy Williamson. This led to two recording dates in 1937, the four musicians recording together at the Victor Records studio in Aurora, Illinois, as well as recordings under his own name, including "Prowling Night-Hawk" (recorded 5 May 1937), from which he was take his later pseudonym.
These sessions led to Chicago careers for the other musicians, but not for McCoy, who simply continued his rambling life, playing and recording (for Victor/Bluebird and Decca) solo and with various musicians, under various names. He also became a familiar voice on local radio stations. Then Robert Lee McCoy disappeared.Within a few years he reappeared as the electric slide-guitarist Robert Nighthawk, and began recording for Chess Records. This was also Muddy Waters' label; the two men's styles were close enough that they were in competition for promotional activity — and as Waters was the more saleable commodity, being more reliable and a more confident stage communicator, he received the attention. Though Nighthawk continued to perform and to record, he failed to achieve any great commercial success.
In 1963, some ten years later, Nighthawk was discovered busking in Chicago, and this led to further recording sessions and club dates, and to his return to Arkansas, where he appeared on the King Biscuit Time radio programme on KFFA. He had a stroke, followed by a heart attack, and died at his home in Helena.


Ewan Svensson Quartet & Linda Pettersson


Ewan Svensson Quartet & Linda Pettersson - Light & Shade - 2005 - Nocturne/CDA

Excellent jazz vocals with a great rhythmic quality from Linda Pettersson.A top class jazz album with fifteen original tracks and first class back up musicians.Recommended highly by A.O.O.F.C


Circles in the sand
40 different words for snow
No words
Amber light
Light & Shade
The blues are never far away
Like it was before
Old - Hat
Stranger in the mirror
More to explore
The Sunflower
Too much sun
Makin´it up
Pretend you´re me


Linda Pettersson - vocal
Antoine Herve´- piano
Ewan Svensson - guitar
Yasuhito Mori - bass
Magnus Gran - drums
All music by Ewan Svensson / All lyrics by Dave Castle

REVIEW © http://cdbaby.com/home

Linda Pettersson is regarded by many as one of the most interesting singers to have emerged in Sweden during the last few years. Her ability to interpret a wide range of styles in music written by many diversified composers seems to be unlimited. The range, accuracy and attractive timbre of her voice are all qualities perfectly suited to the selections on this CD.

For many years Ewan Svensson has been one of Sweden's foremost jazz guitarists and he has sofar released 8 albums under his own name. He is also a prolific composer and his music is significant for its strong melodic and harmonic content. In 2004 he added to his excellent trio the renowned French pianist Antoine Herve´ and Linda Pettersson.

The group's repertoire consists of Ewan's compositions, to which English lyrics have been written by Dave Castle. The result is a constellation that has been taking audiences by storm not only in Sweden but also in Japan, France and Scotland.

Their first CD together: Light & Shade, truly justifies its title by presenting 15 tracks containing a spectrum of different moods, from intimate ballads to dynamic latin-beat numbers and straight-ahead jazz.
Some rewievs:
Light & Shade
Ewan Svensson's collaboration with Linda Pettersson and the French pianist Antoine Herve has resulted in the wonderful album "Light & Shade", in which Dave Castle's English lyrics elevate the lyrical quality of the guitarist's compositions, all selected from six of his albums recorded 1990-2000.
Beautiful ballads and soft Latin rhythms make up easy-to-listen-to but original jazz. The new versions are for the most part a little shorter in length and start directly after a brief intro, as with the oldest tune "Different".
Linda has an even warmer sound in her voice than before without losing any of her glass-clear precision. Her phrasing alone lifts "Like It Was Before" and the charming huskiness in the tones of "No Words" make me think of a young Monica Zetterlund.
I like it when Ewan plays acoustic guitar in "Circles In The Sand" and "Stranger In The Mirror". As a soloist he shines most in the bluesy "Old-Hat" and "The Sunflower", which like the title tune is absolutely magical, a slow jazz waltz that comes from the album, "Figures". Magnus Gran dutifully tones down his busy, swinging drumming but stokes the fire under Antoine Herve's piano solos in "Too Much Sun" and "Forty Different Words For Snow".
The funky shuffle "Makin' It Up", the fast "More To Explore" and the boppish "The Blues Are Never Far Away" don't sound quite as natural, but work anyway.
Dave Castle has already written lyrics to a further dozen-or-so of Ewan's tunes and I hope that this six-star review will result in another album containing more information. With that, we hopefully will not have to search the web site for details of the original titles and lyrics.
Hallands Nyheter

Linda Pettersson, Ewan Svensson

Since her highly-praised debut CD "Who Are You?" (Touche Music) Linda Pettersson has now also a follow-up CD in the company of completely new colleagues, guitarist Ewan Svensson, French pianist Antoine Herve, bassist Yasuhito Mori and drummer Magnus Gran. Light & Shade is the title and also one of the 15 songs on the CD. All are compositions from the pen of Ewan Svensson with English lyrics written by saxophonist Dave Castle, both of whom have contributed excellent and inspired work.
I had the pleasure of being present when Linda and Ewan performed this programme live at Jazzklubb Fasching last Spring and since then have looked forward eagerly to this recording, which truly lives up to expectations. This CD is, in fact, in every respect superb. Few singers today have Linda's ability to bring a lyric to life and in addition have such a relaxed and natural rhythmic sense.
Linda's fellow-musicians also deserve much praise. Ewan Svensson is undoubtedly one of Sweden's most worthy guitarists and Antoine Herve is a most interesting new name to me. The rhythm section duo of Yauhito Mori and Magnus Gran work perfectly together, which is distinctly evident by the recording engineered by sound-master Åke Linton.
Light & Shade has become an often-played favourite and it can only be hoped that it receives a fair chance to reach the ears of the listening public. * * * *
Gunnar Holmberg, DIG music magazine

The music is propelled forward so feather-light, with an almost aesthetic grace. Linda Pettersson often uses the higher register with her agile and precise voice. Ewan Svensson glides over the scales on the guitar while Antoine Herve gives the music a solid foundation with his piano and the rhythm section of drummer Magnus Gran and bassist Yasuhito Mori can be more felt than heard.
The music on Light & Shade could perhaps be described in this way, but sometimes a heavier expression also breaks through. Ewan Svensson plays with a light touch but his technique also holds a reserved explosivity, as though something more is searching for its form under the elegant flow. As a parallell Linda Pettersson's sensitive singing also breaks out into heavier blues and bebop figures resulting in the music creating its own individuality by way of contrasts and changes. It is beautiful and full of substance, with body and spirit at the same time.
LIRA music magasine © http://cdbaby.com/home