The second Family single was released on Reprise on 5 July 1968, some days prior to their first album, the very psychedelic-oriented Music in a Doll's House, one of the best album in a genre that is now quite dated and has not aged well. Strangely, in this plethoric album (16 tracks) the 2 selected songs for the single (no unissued B-side here) were not really in the psychedelic mood. "Me My Friend" is a classic, with something that makes me think of the French chanson tradition. I would like to know what was the influence for this song. Anyway, it's really a strong one. The orchestration is plenty of horns and raises shivers in the spine. It was not a hit but the critical welcome was rather enthusiastic. On the B-side, Family offers a bluesy brass one that ondulates as Ray Davies' version of New Orleans swamp. Rather sapid. Enjoy this second shot here. Sorry for the bad quality of the cover sleeve. Didn't find a better one on the net since I don't have the single personally. Below a version of "Me My Friend" filmed by French TV (I think it was Pop 2 from Antenne 2 channel but I have not verified so I may be wrong).
Me My Friend. Me my friend, I have seen many lands, me my friend I have been far and wide I have sailed many a tide I have rolled many a ride But I wish, me my friend, I could sail to the stars Have the gift to transport my whole being, my whole thought To a world of dreams, my friend Me my friend, I have loved many girls, me my friend I have told many lies I have asked many whys I have whispered many sighs But I wish, me my friend, I could have till the end Someone to love and hold Through the warmth and the cold Of my lonely years, my friend
Yesterday evening, I was trying to kill my anguish and sadness with something new to hear, and I despaired also to find anything that may seem to me of enough strenght and intensity to be noticed. When I thought it was over for the night, I met this incredible demo from a UK duo who seem to have recorded it 2 years ago and released it only last June. It's a fantastic piece of music, consisting in 3 tracks melting post-rock to sludge, black metal, industrial (à la Godflesh) and Khanate-influenced doom, with an hellish heavyness and a terrific frightening atmosphere and constant changes (except "Madness & Civilisation" which is a sort of bridge between the 2 main tracks) precluding any boredom. In particular the voice, which is far from the pseudo-poetic approach of some post-rock descendants of Pelican or Isis. No doubt it's one of the most impressive thing I heard this year. And today, still high in my sadness-will-prevail state, it was (with a French singer called Barbara) the only thing that helped me to reach the evening without jumping through my window (and I'm living quite high). Make me a favour. Listen to this EP, dl it here, and then support this band there, we need (at least I) them to make other impressive records like this one.
Sound up. Lights off. Full screen. Drink on.--- First we captured the earth, then set motion to an unending process of cultivation. Now we consume. Master and conquer till nights are starless, till birds are singing at 3am, till the world is just "scenery" and the noise of machinery never goes away.Capture. Cultivate. Consume.
Somewhere, a blogger wrote about the 3 first Lifelover albums that it was a "perfect trilogy". Not far to be true and honestly this band is one of my most cherished (late) revelation of the last decade. Actually, it's true too that this EP, following the 3rd LP (Konkurs) is rather a deception. Much more fist-in-the-face oriented, it seems the band decided to dig its metal dimension and to omit almost completely their experimental explorations that gave them this so idiosyncrasic aura. Of course, it's only an EP, recorded in the BBC studios, and the objective was maybe to break the European market, but it was the first time the band did not fulfil expectations. Sometimes there are some traces of Ministry, sometimes of Sisters of Mercy, sometimes the band uses black metal gimmicks, but all this does not add to their grandeur. Since I decided to post all their work in order to make them known by the more people possible, I post this one too. It's still good and there are some great moments in it. Enjoy it here (it took me 2 hrs to upload with my snaily connexion).
Some weeks after the success of their live LP (a challenge to release a live LP so soon for a band, but a real good idea in the case of Slade), the band releases their 7th single in May 1972, their 7th but the first of what will become their "marque de fabrique" as we say in France, in other words their style, stompin' rock 'n' roll quite screamy and easy listening. This is a rather good one (I mean "Tak Me Bak "Ome") but the interest is the B-side again, a Beatles-flavoured song (more specifically Paul McCartney) that shows that in 1972 the band had not lost all its musical ambition (actually they never totally lost it but it became more and more difficult to see where it was on their production). A classic for those who love fine 4 fab-influenced melodies. Enjoy it here. PS. Sorry its hard to post these days cos' m y connexion is slower than a snail (thx numericable, the stealers that provide shit connexions). Hope it'll improve soon. Don't abandon the blog.
Wonderin' Y. Here I am in the same old clothes Looking back on my life 'cos I'm left alone Left out here without a home Take no chance, read between the lines Don't accept a way When she always cries Just read between the lines I tried to love you, now I'm here Taking things as I find them Now I'm here wasting time Thinking of me Looking back on my life Wonderin' Y It's hard to see and to understand Just a what it's like To be pushed around Kicking stones along the ground I don't think it will ever change Can I find a way To the front again And have another chance to spend My life with you and now I'm here Taking things as I find them Now I'm here wasting time Thinking of me Looking back on my life Wonderin' y
I discovered this Detroit band from Stonerobixxx (here) with their one-track EP released last January (Conduit (Deprogramming in 3 Phases)) and quite a masterpiece. But I'm totally stupefied by this other one-track EP that was "offered up as a mail-order only bonus CD-R to folks who purchased the "Cold Hands" 7"" and which has been updated last March. It's in the same time pure rock, pure doom and pure post-metal. And more than that, with a sound loudness I've rarely heard in my life (and I heard quite a lot of things believe me). It's massive as was some LP such as Migration's Buried at Sea for example. One can hear the reminiscences of ancient Neurosis or Melvins (they were much more Melvinian some years ago) and even Godflesh, but again, with a little rock supplement I've never heard in this genre. Instrumental, it's moreover full of windy atmosphere that gives to it a rather spacey feeling. In other words, this band is one of the greatest on the planet these days. Don't miss it. Go to buy their stuff here and if you want to be sure beforehand, dl this gem there. More posts to come for sure, it's a revelation for me.
Georges Brassens - Supplique pour être enterré à la plage de Sète / La non-demande en mariage (1966)
If some may ask me who are the greatest French composers/singers of the XXth century, I would not be very original and cite what we call the 3B (Barbara, Brel and Brassens). Some may think I could add Ferré (Léo) but honestly I've never really shared the enthusiasm of many (except for some masterpieces) for him. Of course my affection and admiration also go to Christophe, Alain Z Kan, Jean-Claude Vannier or Alain Bashung, but there's something in the 3B that make them reach some universal and trans-temporal status. Here a post around Georges Brassens, a sort of national cross between Woody Guthrie and Bod Dylan but this comparison is more theorical than real cos' Brassens is a mix between a libertarian-anarchist French tradition and a more reactionary right-wing vision of society, primary concerned by individual freedom and less by societal progress. In 1966, he's 45 and maybe a sort of paternal and populist figure of anti-authority, more appreciated by middle-aged French people than by youngsters who are more in Léo Ferré and other real anarcho-revolutionarist singers. But on the song quality side, he's on the top of his art, and more specifically with these 2 songs, in no way linked to any political preoccupation but only to death ("Supplique pour être enterré à la plage de Sète") and love ("La non-demande en mariage"), subjects finally more relevant to everyone now than the anti-bourgeoisie incantations which often were expressed with formulations rapidly out-of "fashion". Yes, these 2 songs are among my favorites any style, any period. Of course, understanding the lyrics would help to see why since Brassens was maybe the best song lyricist of the history, not far to be the equal of our greatest French poets (although they are songs lyrics and can't be appreciated as poems). Someone (thanx to him) did the job here and I encourage every non-French speaking visitor interested by this post to read the text whilst listening to the song. On the B-side, the song is again a masterpiece needing to have the lyrics under the eyes, and on the same site, the translation has been made there. Both songs were on the 11th Brassens' LP, called IX because the LP format was changed from 25 cm to 30 cm in the beginning of the sixties and previous LPs were re-released with more songs on them. For the cover sleeve (this is a fake single although "La non-demande en mariage" was released as the A-side of 3 track-single in 1966, but without "Supplique" on it), I chose a painting called "La plage de Sète", from a painter called François Knopf (site here), not really my painting style but I really dig this one (complete format here) and found it relevant. So now, it's up to you (only 10% of this blog's visitors are French, so I don't know if the 90 other % may be interested by such a national singer). Enjoy it here. PS. The version of "La non-demande en mariage" below is live whereas in the rar file (and therefore this fake single) it's the studio one.
Bongmoth - Illumination by Black Sun Audio
One of the rare stoner band I'll post here. If I've really been in stoner during Kyuss career and the first years of the movement (with Acrimony and some others), I've been quickly bored with the constant recycling of the same old cooked riffs and the increasing testosterone-trend of the genre. Here is an incredibly interesting band (surely disbanded since I didn't find anything new about them even on their myspace and this LP was quite difficult to find for dling). It's completely instrumental, and is a novative mix of stoner and post-rock. They're (actually were) Australians. The last track "Illumination" listen below on Soundcloud), the longest, has a stunning harmonica on it and is for me one of the strongest stoner track ever played in history. It's even doom in it's slowness and atmosphere. Not to miss. A must hear. Enjoy it here. Thanx to Drowning Earth for the revelation.
In January 1972, contrary to the expected Cuz I Luv You album, there was another single. And if this was not the same major hit than its predecessor, it still reached n°4 in the UK charts, not bad for sure. It's true the song had not the catchy power of "Cuz I Luv You" but it's nevertheless one of the best of the band, with something of the Beatles' greatness in it. But the single, once again, is now a must-have for it's B-side, a Lea/Powell song which not less laid the foundations of what the Undertones would play on their 2 last albums. Moreover, it has one of the rare political content in the whole band's career. Although the Beatles influences are clear (some say Lennon's, I'd said Harrison's), it paved the way for the new wave in it's pop development. It will surprise all those of you who think Slade was only able to play they stomping rock 'n' roll funny stuff. Enjoy this gem here.
From Seattle, this band (actually, they are only 2) offers an haunting piece of doom. Imagine Sleep crossed with Khanate with something of the loudest and "rootest" sludge. Imagine Black Sabbath who would have sacrificed their hard rock wing to fly only with their most funeral and slow one. Imagine Electric Wizard who would have not decided to become groovy. And you got one of the most "down under the ground" band of this era. It's slow, very slow (not far from the 1st Orthodox or Moss, but more old school and far easier to listen). They don't fear to play very few notes and let the gloomy atmosphere spread it's tentacles around the listener. It's audacious, risqué and it works. With only a dirst demo they install themselves as a seminal force of our rotten times. Hope they'll keep this uncompromised approach and will not put any stoner in their sonic beverage. It is said to be a demo but for me it's a self titled EP that's all. And a great, very great one, believe me. Enjoy it here and then go there to their bandcamp support in buying it (sad there's not solid format to buy), then go to their blog there to catch news. PS. Some informations about this Bell Witch of Tenesse who gave her name to the band here.
I played the sands of time and I loved and lost They give their bodies to two time whores They gambled every thing they got A greedy mind cut out the cards They even loved with another man's wife They even loved her with other men They've also drank a lot of wine Some men have even had a good time My life is natural, hey, hey, hey My life is natural, I said, I said, I said My life is natural, whoa, whoa, whoa My life is natural Maybe tomorrow a change in the life Of the man in the street's gonna come Maybe tomorrow hope it`s tomorrow You got the sands of time and got 'em high They've done their best to wreck their mind Instead of joke they told a lie They started wars so men could die now They try to sus their bodies evil And what is good will take a mind brighter than mine To start to setting the world to right Would take another Christ now My life is natural, hey, hey, hey My life is natural, I said, I said, I said My life is natural, whoa, whoa, whoa My life is natural Maybe tomorrow a change in the life Of the man in the streets gonna come Maybe tomorrow - hope it`s tomorrow
This is no less than one of my fave single of last century. If only for the A-side, a classic among the classics, for a reason I couldn't explain, the genius of the simplicity, the evidence of the arrangements, the kind of songs you feel you could find joy to live listening it with a beer in one hand, your beloved next to you and a crowd of singing drinkers around you. But the B-side, "My Life Is Natural" is also a masterpiece, not in the same discipline since here we have the mix between Led Zeppelin (the acoustic guitar), the Who (the electric guitar), Humble Pie (the voice) and the Beatles (the bridges). What else to require from a so-called unidimensional band such as Slade. I doubt any of you will still have the heart to call them a second-zone band once the song finished. We were in October 1971. The band was breaking the charts for the first time and culminated at the top. Strangely, the associated studio album was posponed, shelved and finally never released. Don't know why but there must be an explanation in some biography maybe. Meanwhile, enjoy this great single here.
Sorry for those coming here for old 70's stuff but I can't wait posting this extraordinary post-rock droney sludge album (these classifications become quite boring but they help to define quickly what we(re talking about musically) from an Italian band formed 4 or 5 years ago and who seemed to have evolved quite recently in one of the most powerful and imaginative atmospheric derelicted post-rock of the planet. They offer here a wide rainbow of emotive landscapes, mostly dark and bleak but who escape the usual arty posture and conceptual shit that this style often drains. An unmissable record if you want to fly over your everyday filth. Enjoy it here. You can dl the album for free here and then donate for the band is able to release the CD.
First, I was deceived. Production was improved but I thought it was more unidimensional, too much gothic and less inventive than the 2 previous ones. I was wrong. Some weeks later, I think it's a pure masterpiece. I must say I discovered the band quite recently, with Pulver, and decided to discover their discography progressively. And some days ago, I learned that B, the member of the band that was responsible for most of the material, died after a show. I must say that I've rarely been more affected by the death of a musician (by Kossoff, Alex Harvey and Marc Bolan ones of course, but not many more). And to know there won't be another Lifelover album makes me more angry than sad. There are some incredible songs on Konkurs. Specially the instrumentals. Like the previous albums, songs become more and more experimental and atmospheric on what would have been the B-side on a vinyl record. I can't imagine something more crucial to dl that such an album. As specified earlier on the posts for Pulver and Erotik, this band is a mix between Amon Düll II, goth-rock, black metal, Paradise Lost Gothic period, and even TV Personalities, but so many more I can't name them all and I would probably miss a lot. In the end, it becomes Lifelover and all these influences are far beyond and buried in memory. Do me a favor: dl it here. And then go to buy it for the great booklet.
Ribs Out (here) has uploaded 15 new albums/EPs from various styles, mostly post rock, ambient, drone or math rock. I took some times to listen to most of them and I was immediately stucked by this Croatian band, who play something like post-rock, not totally innovative I must say, but whose climate alleviates a little of my inner anguish and it's a welcome relief. This EP has been mastered by James Plotkin, which is a quality sign. If you're in Omega Massif or Witchblade (but I know that Isis, Pelican and Mogwai invented the genre), you can jump on it without apprehension, it's for you. Enjoy it here. And then go to their bandcamp there buy the CD (a nicely composed box).
The band posted it's (great) last album (Trash is the Trophy, released in May 2010) on bandcamp, and you can listen to and buy it here. This band is the wildest descendant of Jesus Lizard and Stephanie the most stunning performer of the planet. So, no use to add that this album is a must. If you absolutely want to dl it free, do it here, but then please support them in buying their stuff.
With this 4th single and it's A-side sounding as the Beatles playing Little Richard, Slade will find the path to the charts in May 1971 (n°16 in UK). But the interest is the couple of songs on B-side. Actually, there are 2, and really great ones. The first is a doomy blues in the vein of Ten Years After and the Beatles. The second is a heavy rock prog that would have been cherished by fans of all the obscure bands that became cult in the late 20 years. Not far from the Groundhogs approach of this genre but one can hear a lot of Led Zeppelin too (it seems Jim Lea would have loved to have been in Led Zep). All in all, a great offer. The band succeeded in entering the charts with it's more ambitious single to date. Unfortunately, it wouldn't last. Enjoy it here.
Amazing how worldwide, bands offer novative, uncomplexed and free ways to mix various styles. After Lifelover in Sweden, Frequency of the Butterfly Wings in Iran, Godstopper in Canada, Autumn for the Crippled Children in Nederland, today Kutkh in Russia, who provide a long track (18:35) in which we travel throughout an incredible variety of atmospheres. No taboo, it could be the Velvet Underground (or let's say Slint) and 2 minutes later Ramesses. It's exciting to see that Black Metal, Doom and Sludge's avatars aren't stuck in the boring repetition of formula such as Stoner or Death metal. An exceptional band. Enjoy it here and then, support them there.
Never anything from this band (from Norway, formed 20 years ago) had really any impact on me previously (maybe I should try again), but this new 2 tracks single is one of the best thing I heard this autumn (and there are a lot of weak things released unfortunately, with blogs strangely enthusiastics for an amount of mediocre old school stoner or doom clichés). Based on black metal, with a rather slow and basic drumming, "Disintegrator" has a wonderful melody that makes you fly upon this shitload reality as few others can do it. And the B-side is great too. It's good to see an old band like this produces such an uncompromised music. Hope they'll pursue in this style. Enjoy it here.