Saturday, August 15, 2009

Joseph - Stone Age Man (1969)

The cover drawing of a cave man is completely apt. Joseph sings like he’s about to hit you in the head with a club. His gruff, gravely voice is completely perfect for songs with titles like “I Ain’t Fattenin’ No More Frogs For Snakes” and “Cold Biscuits and Fish Heads.” The backing is solid bluesy organ and guitar, with a few surprising moments here, like “Mojo Gumbo” speeding up at the end. While a bit of Howlin’ Wolf/Captain Beefheart shows through here and there, he’s really one step behind those guys on the evolutionary chart. His lead guitar playing is equally as crude as his vocals. This is a short album, with 9 songs in 29 minutes, and not a second is wasted, except maybe for the cover of “House of The Rising Sun.” Really cool!

Track Listing...
1. Trick Bag
2. I Ain't Fattenin' No More Frog
3. Cold Biscuits and And Fish Head
4. Stone Age Man
5. I'm Gonna Build A Mountain
6. Mojo Gumbo
7. The House of the Rising Sun
8. Gotta Get Away
9. Come The Sun Tomorrow

Primevil - Smokin' Bats at Camptons (1974)

Originally a private and limited vinyl release in 1974, Smokin' Bats At Compton's stands as a fine example of '70s hard rock. The overall sound is bluesy hard rock, very much in the style of Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, although in recent years they have also appealed to psychedelic collectors. Highlights include the opening track 'Leavin', 'Progress' and the now legendary 'Hey Lover'.

Track Listing...
01.Leavin' (3:51)
02.Progress (3:25)
03.Fantasies (6:00)
04.Pretty Woman (3:11)
05.Tell Me If You Can (5:20)
06.Hey, Lover (2:36)
07.High Steppin' Stomper (4:27)
08.Your Blues (7:24)

JPT Scare Band - Past Is Prologue (1975)

These recordings from the Kansas City threesome, JPT Scare Band, from 1973-75, have been bootlegged for eons at pricey sums. If the band had a signed record contract back in the early '70s, there is no doubt they would be up there with Jimi Hendrix, Cream, and Black Sabbath for guitar overload damage. Unfortunately, these recordings never really made it out of the inner circles of hard psych heads. This is a classic snapshot into the basement of a true American Rock Band doing what they do best. It is easy to imagine all their friends freaking freely to their brand of tripped-out, space-vibe rock. Interesting liner and production notes round out this great package (lots of photos, lyrics, etc.) and proves that, in the mid-'70s, not all of American rock was asleep or staring at its navel.The JPT Scare Band's screaming electric psych/blues barely made it past the basement where they first rehearsed back in 1973, but someone was smart enough to tape these three titans of volume at work. That work became the album known as Sleeping Sickness, an album spoke about in hushed reverence among heavy psych heads that were lucky enough to hear it.
Past is Prologue gives us a snapshot of the band through time, including tracks recorded in 1975, '76, '77, '93 - and oddly the best track, Sci-Fi acid-epic "Burn in Hell", recorded in 2001. The reason I say "oddly", is because the band seems not to have skipped a beat over the years. The musical chemistry between the three members of the band is awe- inspiring..."Burn in Hell" sounds as fiery and intense as, say, "Time To Cry" did back in '75.
The beauty of the JPT Scare Band is it's ability to function as a unit in the nebulous field of the free-form heavy jam. They start with a chord progression and the rest is a musical conversation, the direction dictated by unspoken energies. Terry Swope is a gawdam genius. One of the best all around soul guitarists I've ever heard. The kind that are unencumbered by strict technique and play soley based on smoldering emotion. Definitely in the league with the best in that genre...Hendrix, Duane Allman, Robin Trower and Carlos Santana. The other two comparatively unheralded players in the band are of equal importance - bassist Paul Grigsby anchors the band with an equal amount of soul and passion and drummer Jeff Littrell knows when to dig in with a fill and push the band a bit, and then back off in the more soulful moments. The end result is nothing short of mind-blowing.A must for those into heavy psych and/or those that are true aficionados of the mysteries of the jam.

Track Listing...
1. Burn in Hell
2. I've Been Waiting
3. Wino
4. Sleeping Sickness
5. Time To Cry
6. Titan's Siren
7. Jerry's Blues
8. It's Too Late (Revisited)

Love Sculpture - Blues Helping (1968)

Love Sculpture formed in Cardiff in 1966 out of the remnants of another local band called The Human Beans, and disbanded in 1970, although Edmunds went on to enjoy solo success in the 1970s. The band itself was essentially a showpiece for Edmunds' considerable technical ability on the guitar. Love Sculpture mostly performed blues standards, slightly revved-up, but still largely reverent to the originals, releasing their debut album, Blues Helping with such songs as "Summertime", "Wang Dang Doodle" etc. They are best known for their 1968 novelty hit in the UK Singles Chart, a high speed cover version of the classical piece "Sabre Dance", by Aram Khachaturian, released on the Parlophone label (R 5744). The recording was inspired by Keith Emerson's classical rearrangements.[3] "Sabre Dance" became a hit after garnering the enthusiastic attention of British DJ John Peel.[3] This was followed by a second album Forms and Feelings, with songs including: "In The Land of the Few", "Farandole", "People People", "Seagull" and the equally fast cover of Chuck Berry's "You Can't Catch Me".They recorded three times for BBC Radio 1's John Peel sessions in 1968 (twice) and 1969.[4] Love Sculpture split up after a U.S. tour, having recorded two albums. Edmunds shortly went on to further number one hit success with "I Hear You Knocking", and collaborated heavily with ex-Brinsley Schwarz bassist Nick Lowe, eventually forming the band Rockpile with him.

Track Listing...

2...Three O' Clock Blues
3...I Believe To My Soul
4...So Unkind
6...On The Road Again
7...Don't Answer The Door
8...Wang Dang Doodle
9...Come Back Baby
10...Shake Your Hips
11...Blues Helping

Lucifer's friend - Lucifer's Friend (1970)

This German hard rock machine, with British belter John Lawton, (later of Uriah Heep) gave birth to one of the best heavy rock albums of the early 70's. From the screaming vocals of "Ride In The Sky" (with its brass opening reminiscent of Zeppelin's "The Immigrant Song" and an almost "thrash metal" riff) to the progressive/ hard R&B of "Toxic Shadows", to the lumbering, Sabbathish doom of "Keep Goin", this album never lets up for a second. Fans of Black Sabbath, Uriah Heep, Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin must have this in their collection! Lawton is one of the best singers in hard rock, and the musicianship of the group is tremendous. Very heavy indeed for a 1970 release.

Track Listing...

1. Ride in the Sky
2. Everybody's Clown
3. Keep Goin'
4. Toxic Shadows
5. Free Baby
6. Baby You're a Liar
7. In the Time of a Job When Mammon was a Yippie
8. Lucifer's Friend

Space Farm - Space Farm (1972)

First time on CD for original version and highly sought after New Zealand early 70's monster with original cover art intact. The previous reissue included re-recorded material so beware of fakes. Features the genius guitar work of Harvey Mann of The Under.

Track Listing...
1. Space Farm
2. Homeward Bound
3. Infinity Way
4. Waking Dream
5. On The Loose
6. Flying
7. Gypsy Queen
8. Wheel
9. Lover Not A Dancer

Shinki Chen - Shinki Chen and His friends (1971)

Heavy Psych. Fuzzy Bass. Echoes in a cave vocals. As long as we're in the habit of comparing these lesser known folks to the big names, this guy is oft referred to as "Japan's Hendrix." Very chill, very good. Click it and dig it.

Track Listing...
01. The Dark Sea Dream
02. Requiem of Confusion
03. Freedom of a Mad Paper Lantern
04. Gloomy Reflections
05. It Was Only Yesterday
06. Corpse
07. Farewell to Hypocrites

Speed, Glue and Shinki - Speed, Glue and Shinki (1972)

If you like that heavy drugged psych sound from the early '70's then Speed, Glue & Shinki is a must! This is a excellent sounding group from Japan and featured the great Shinki Chen on guitar. If you like Blues Creation, Juan De La Cruz, Flower Travellin' Band and Too Much then you are going to love this rare release! The Psychedelic weirdness predominates on this release which rips along like a sludge heavy Led Zep meets Sabbath.

Track Listing...
01. Sniffin & Snortin Pt. 1
02. Run and Hide
03. Bad Woman
04. Red Doll
05. Flat Fret Swing
06. Sniffin & Snortin Pt. 2
07. Don't Say No
08. Calm Down
09. Doodle Song
10. Search for Love
11. Chuppy
12. Wanna Take You Home
13. a) Sun b) Planets c) Life d) Moon
14. Song for an Angel