I’ve been listening to the magnificent Chris Wood box set Evening Blue, which covers Chris’s career including, naturally, Traffic, unreleased solo work and sessions he did for various bands and artists, some well known (Free, John Martyn and Nick Drake) and others not so well known. One of the lesser known artists is someone called Gordon Jackson. Not the actor from Upstairs Downstairs, The Professionals and The Great Escape (the dumb ass, falling for “the oldest trick in the book”) but a guy who was apparently well regarded in the Midlands’ music scene at the end of the 60s. Until listening to this collection I’d never heard of him before (or if I had, I’d totally forgotten about him). He seems to have produced one album only Thinking Back, and then disappeared. There are three tracks on Evening Blue which feature all of Traffic. Other musicians involved were Jim King and Pole Palmer of Family and Julie Driscoll. It’s all very much of its time, but I rather like the tracks I’ve heard. I’ve posted a link to Song For Freedom. He was still living a couple of years ago, because there is a YouTube film of hm talking about » Continue Reading.
I stumbled across this relatively obscure Genesis b-side the other day. It dates from 1975, and The Trick of the Tail sessions, the first album they recorded after Peter Gabriel departed. The song appears to be three separate sections stitched together, with the middle section forming part of the closing ‘Los Endos’ on The Trick of the Tail.
It’s an interesting historical piece. The transition from The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway – their previous album – to this, is startling. The structure of the song retains prog. leanings, but the tune itself is pretty much a straight ahead dirge. It does sound good. Collins already seems comfortable in his new role as lead vocalist, while Hackett’s/Banks’s expert arpeggios and Mike Rutherford’s shuddering bass pedals create an assured, embalming atmosphere. Lyrically, it’s all change too. Hogweeds, Lamias and unifauns are replaced by a maudlin lament to a love lost.
The abrupt shift in the middle of the song self-consciously reasserts their prog. credentials. But it’s the closing coda that really caught my attention. Here, the band essentially reprises the intro. before heading off into generic, off-the-shelf, woozy psychedelia. Guitar’s chime at stoner pace before – wait for it » Continue Reading.
I just reversed the Frank Chacksfield Orchestra version of The Fool On The Hill, and it’s quite lovely.
Spun off from an exchange between @locust and @kaisfatdad in the Scandinavian thread, here’s one for Japanese psych. I’ll go first. Ghost were a long running (thirty years plus) band led by Masaki Batoh. The legend is that they lived communally in abandoned temples and disused subway stations, which would be very cool if true. The only album I have of theirs is 1999’s Snuffbox Immanence, which is at the pastoral / folky end of psychedelia, although there are some electric guitar heroics. Plenty of acoustic guitar, harps, and traditional sounding Japanese melodies. It’s very mellow, and even has a Rolling Stones cover.
Friday 23rd October, 10pm on BBC4:
“Documentary exploring the rise and fall of the most visionary period in British music history. Five kaleidoscopic years between 1965 and 1970 when a handful of dreamers re-imagined pop music.
When a generation of British R&B bands discovered LSD, conventions were questioned. From out of the bohemian underground and into the pop mainstream, the psychedelic era produced some of the most ground-breaking music ever made, pioneered by young improvising bands like Soft Machine and Pink Floyd, then quickly taken to the charts by the likes of the Beatles, Procol Harum, the Small Faces and the Moody Blues even while being reimagined in the country by bucolic, folk-based artists like the Incredible String Band and Vashti Bunyan.
The film is narrated by Nigel Planer with contributions and freshly-shot performances from artists who lived and breathed the psych revolution – Paul McCartney, Ginger Baker, Robert Wyatt, Roy Wood, the Zombies, Mike Heron, Vashti Bunyan, Joe Boyd, Gary Brooker, Arthur Brown, Kenney Jones, Barry Miles, the Pretty Things and the Moody Blues.”