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Friday, June 19, 2009

Uriah Heep - The Magician's Birthday (1972)

The Magician's Birthday is the fifth album released by British rock band Uriah Heep. The original vinyl release was a gatefold sleeve, the front of which was designed by Roger Dean. The inner of the gatefold had pictures of the band and the LP itself was housed in a liner which had the lyrics printed on it. - Wikipedia

David Byron - Vocals
Ken Hensley - Keyboards, Guitars, Moog Synthesizer
Mick Box - Guitar
Gary Thain - Bass Guitar
Lee Kerslake - Drums, Percussion, Kazoo

1. Sunrise (4:04)
2. Spider Woman (2:25)
3. Blind Eye (3:33)
4. Echoes in the Dark (4:48)
5. Rain (3:59)
6. Sweet Lorraine (4:13)
7. Tales (4:09)
8. The Magician's Birthday (10:19)

Hawkwind - Quark, Strangeness and Charm (1977)

Quark, Strangeness And Charm is a 1977 studio album by Hawkwind. It reached #30 on the UK album charts. This is Hawkwind's seventh studio album, hence "The Hawkwind Part 7" title on the inner sleeve. It is the band's first album without co-founding member Nik Turner, and drummer Alan Powell had also departed. In addition, Adrian "Ade" Shaw from Magic Muscle replaced Paul Rudolph during the recording session. Robert Calvert starts to dominate proceedings with his science fiction inspired lyrics, whereas the music is lighter and more commercial than previous offerings. - Wikipedia

Robert Calvert - Vocals, Percussion
Dave Brock - Guitar, Synthesisers
Simon House - Keyboards, Violin, Vocals
Adrian Shaw - Bass Guitar, Vocals
Simon King - Drums, Percussion

1. Spirit of the Age (7:19)
2. Damnation Alley (9:08)
3. Fable of a Failed Race (3:18)
4. Quark Strangeness and Charm (3:41)
5. Hassan I Sahba (5:22)
6. The Forge of Vulcan (3:05)
7. Days of the Underground (3:10)
8. Iron Dream (1:49)

Amon Düül II - Phallus Dei (1969)

Phallus Dei was the first album by German band Amon Düül II. The album was the result of the Amon Düül commune in Munich splitting, perhaps due to some members of the original Amon Düül's musical ineptitude. The album is a cornerstone of German psychedelic music because of its layered guitars, abstract percussion, and chant-like vocals. It is heavily cited (alongside Can's Monster Movie) as the original Krautrock album. - Wikipedia

Peter Leopold - Drums, Percussion, Piano
Shrat - Bongos, Violin, Vocals
Renate - Vocals, Tambourine
John Weinzierl - Bass, Guitar
Chris Karrer - Violin, Guitar, Sax, Vocals
Falk Rogner - Organ, Synth
Dave Anderson - Bass
Dieter Serfas - Drums, Electric Cymbals

1. Kanaan (4:02)
2. Dem Guten, Schönen, Wahren (6:12)
3. Luzifer's Ghilom (8:34)
4. Henriette Krötenschwanz (2:03)
5. Phallus Dei (20:48)

Van der Graaf Geneator - The Quiet Zone / The Pleasure Dome (1977)

The Quiet Zone / The Pleasure Dome, released in 1977, was Van der Graaf Generator's last studio album before their 2005 reunion. The album features a more energetic, new wave sound than its three immediate predecessors, anticipating singer and songwriter Peter Hammill's late '70s solo work. For this album, original bassist Nic Potter returned to the band, having left in 1970. Violinist Graham Smith, from String Driven Thing, also joined the line-up. Saxophonist David Jackson and organist Hugh Banton had left, modifying the band's sound considerably. Officially, the band's name was shortened to just "Van der Graaf" for this album and the live album Vital that followed, but contemporaneous Charisma Records promotional materials used both the full and shortened name. - Wikipedia

Nic Potter - Bass Guitar
Guy Evans - Drums, Percussion
Peter Hammill - Voice, Piano, Guitars
Graham Smith - Violin
David Jackson - Saxophone

1. Lizard Play (4:29)
2. The Habit of the Broken Heart (4:40)
3. The Siren Song (6:05)
4. Last Frame (6:15)
5. The Wave (3:15)
6. Cat's Eye / Yellow Fever (Running) (5:21)
7. The Sphinx in the Face (5:59)
8. Chemical World (6:12)
9. The Sphinx Returns (1:18)

King Crimson - Larks' Tongues in Aspic (1973)

Larks' Tongues in Aspic is a 1973 album by the British progressive rock group King Crimson. This album is the debut of King Crimson's third incarnation, and features original member and guitarist Robert Fripp and new members John Wetton (vocals, bass), David Cross (violin, mellotron), Jamie Muir (percussion), and Bill Bruford (drums), as well as lyricist Richar Palmer-James. The album sees the band incorporate into its sound violin and also various exotic percussion instruments, including sheet metal and mbiras. The title was invented by percussionist Jamie Muir and is meant to signify what he heard in this album's music: something fragile and delicate (larks' tongues) encased in something corrosive and acidic (aspic).he album opens with a long experimental instrumental piece titled "Larks' Tongues in Aspic, Part One." After that there are three vocal pieces, "Book of Saturday", "Exiles" and "Easy Money." These are followed by two more instrumentals, "The Talking Drum" and "Larks' Tongues in Aspic, Part Two." The instrumental pieces on this album have strong jazz fusion influences, and portions have an almost heavy metal feel. - Wikipedia

Robert Fripp - Guitar, Mellotron, Electric Piano
John Wetton - Bass, Lead Vocals, Acoustic Piano
Bill Bruford - Drums
David Cross - Violin, Viola, Mellotron, Flute, Electric Piano
Jamie Muir - Percussion

1. Larks' Tongues in Aspic (Part I) (13:36)
2. Book of Saturday (2:49)
3. Exiles (7:40)
4. Easy Money (7:54)
5. The Talking Drum (7:26)
6. Larks' Tongues in Aspic (Part II) (7:12)

Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band - Trout Mask Replica (1969)

Trout Mask Replica is the third studio album by Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band, released in June, 1969. The album was produced by Frank Zappa, a friend and former schoolmate of Beefheart, and was originally released on Zappa's own Straight Records imprint. Combining blues, psychedelic rock, avant-garde, free jazz and other disparate genres of American music, Trout Mask Replica is regarded as an important work of experimental music and a major influence in alternative rock, post-punk, noise rock, and grunge. - Wikipedia 
Don Van Vliet - Vocals, Saxophones, Bass Clarinet
Bill Harkleroad - Glass Finger Guitar, Flute
Jeff Cotton - Steel Appendage Guitar, Vocals
Victor Hayden - Bass Clarinet, Additional Vocals
Mark Boston - Bass Guitar
John French - Drums, Percussion

1. Frownland (1:41)
2. The Dust Blows Forward 'n the Dust Blows Back (1:53)
3. Dachau Blues (2:21)
4. Ella Guru (2:26)
5. Hair Pie: Bake I (4:58)
6. Moonlight on Vermont (3:59)
7. Pachuco Cadaver (4:40)
8. Bills Corpse (1:48)
9. Sweet Sweet Bulbs (2:21)
10. Neon Meate Dream of a Octafish (2:25)
11. China Pig (4:02)
12. My Human Gets Me Blues (2:46)
13. Dali's Car (1:26)
14. Hair Pie: Bake II (2:23)
15. Pena (2:33)
16. Well (2:07)
17. When Big Joan Sets Up (5:18)
18. Fallin' Ditch (2:08)
19. Sugar 'n Spikes (2:30)
20. Ant Man Bee (3:57)
21. Orange Claw Hammer (3:34)
22. Wild Life (3:09)
23. She's Too Much for My Mirror (1:40)
24. Hobo Chang Ba (2:02)
25. The Blimp (Mousetrapreplica) (2:04)
26. Steal Softly thru Snow (2:18)
27. Old Fart at Play (1:51)
28. Veteran's Day Poppy (4:31)

Ash Ra Tempel - Schwingungen (1972)

Schwingungen is the second album by the Krautrock band Ash Ra Tempel. It was released in 1972 on Ohr Records. It has been re-released three times, most recently in 2004 on Arcangelo Records. - Wikipedia

Manuel Göttsching - Guitar, Organ, Electronics
Hartmut Enke - Guitar, Bass, Electronics
Wolfgang Mueller - Drums, Vibes

1. Light: Look at Your Sun (6:34)
2. Darkness: Flowers Must Die (12:22)
3. Suche & Liebe (19:23)

Captain Beyond - Dawn Explosion (1977)

Dawn Explosion, the third and final album by Captain Beyond, was released in 1977, and featured former members of Iron Butterfly. Original singer Rod Evans was replaced by Willy Daffern. - Wikipedia

Rhino - Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Slide Guitar
Bobby Caldwell - Drums, Percussion, Vocals
Lee Dorman - Bass Guitar, String Ensemble, Vocals
Willy Daffern - Lead Vocals

1. Do or Die (3:38)
2. Icarus (4:17)
3. Sweet Dreams (5:29)
4. Fantasy (6:02)
5. Breath of Fire (6:19)
6. If You Please (4:13)
7. Midnight Memories (3:59)
8. Oblivion (4:00)

Marillion - Script for a Jester's Tear (1983)

Script for a Jester's Tear is the first album by the progressive rock band Marillion. Released in 1983, it included songs like "Forgotten Sons" and the title track, regarded by some as modern classics. The single released before this album was "Market Square Heroes" with the double B-sides, "Three Boats Down from the Candy" and the 19 minute epic "Grendel". (That version of "Grendel" is not the same version as the one on the second CD on the 2 CD version of this album.) "He Knows You Know" and "Garden Party" were also released as singles, and became Top 40 hits in the UK. This is the only Marillion LP to feature Mick Pointer, founding and current drummer for Arena. There was supposed to be a rubber plant featured on the album's cover, per Fish's request; however, Mark Wilkinson who air-brushed this and several other albums for Marillion, forgot to include it. - Wikipedia

Fish - Vocals
Steve Rothery - Guitars
Mark Kelly - Keyboards
Pete Trewavas - Bass
Mick Pointer - Drums

1. Script for a Jester's Tear (8:42)
2. He Knows You Know (5:23)
3. The Web (8:52)
4. Garden Party (7:19)
5. Chelsea Monday (8:17)
6. Forgotten Sons (8:23)


Monday, June 8, 2009

Chris Squire - Fish Out of Water (1975)

Fish Out of Water is the title of progressive rock musician Chris Squire's first solo album. It was released in 1975 during a break between duties for his band Yes. Bill Bruford, Patrick Moraz, and other members of Yes in its various incarnations contribute to the record, while Squire employs his signature bass skills as well as performance of all guitars and vocals. The album is in the same vein as the Yes album of the previous year, Relayer, though the sound is more fleshed out with the help of a full orchestra and the jazz context of "Lucky Seven". Squire's staple thematic oratorios appear on this album. First, "Fish" appears in the title (being "...Out of Water" referring to being out of the usual Yes oeuvre); second, the number seven, manifested as the seven-minute, 7/8 time signature piece "Lucky Seven". Musically, a melodic passage from Yes' song "Close to the Edge" re-appears in the finale of "Safe". - Wikipedia

Chris Squire - Bass, Vocals, Twelve String Guitar
Bill Bruford - Drums, Percussion
Patrick Moraz - Synthesizer, Organ, Keyboards
Barry Rose - Pipe Organ
Andrew Jackman - Piano, Conductor, Orchestration
Mel Collins - Saxophone

1. Hold Out Your Hand (4:13)
2. You By My Side (5:00)
3. Silently Falling (11:27)
4. Lucky Seven (6:54)
5. Safe (Canon Song) (14:56)

Le Orme - Felona e Sorona (1973)

Felona e Sorona is an album by the Italian progressive rock band Le Orme. It was released in 1973. Usually ranked amongst the finest albums of 1970s progressive rock, it is a concept album pivoting on the story of two planets which revolve one around the other, without ever coming in contact. While Felona is shiny and flourishing, Sorona is dark and home to plagues and catastrophes: however, in the second part of the suite, the fate of the two planets is inverted. Apart from two acoustic interludes, the music is mainly keyboard- and synth-driven, producing gloomy and spacey effects, especially in the opening "Sospesi nell'incredibile" and in the famous instrumental ending piece, "Ritorno al nulla" ("Return to Naught"). A version with English lyrics by Van der Graaf Generator's Peter Hammill was issued in 1974. The English title is Felona and Sorona. Hammill now dissociates himself from this project. - Wikipedia

Toni Pagliuca - Keyboards
Aldo Tagliapietra - Voice, Bass, Guitars
Michi Dei Rossi - Drums, Percussions

1. Sospesi nell'incredibile ("In between") (8:43)
2. Felona (1:58)
3. La solitudine di chi protegge il mondo ("The maker") (1:57)
4. L'equilibrio ("Web of Time") (3:47)
5. Sorona (2:28)
6. Attesa inerte ("The Plan") (3:25)
7. Ritratto di un mattino ("The Balance") (3:29)
8. All'infuori del tempo ("Return to Naught") (4:08)
9. Ritorno al nulla (3:34)

King Crimson - In the Wake of Poseidon (1970)

In the Wake of Poseidon is the second album by the progressive rock group King Crimson. By the time this album was released, the band had already undergone their first change in lineup, however they still maintained much of the style of their first album, In the Court of the Crimson King. Also like their first album, the mood of this album often changes from serene to chaotic. The album opens with a poetic vocal piece called "Peace – A Beginning", which is reprised instrumentally in the middle of the album and vocally again at the end. The longest track on the album is a chaotic instrumental piece called "The Devil’s Triangle", which was built around quotations from Gustav Holst's "Mars: Bringer of War" from his The Planets Suite. King Crimson would have called the piece Mars, as they had performed it on tour in the 1969 lineup, but were forbidden by the composer's legal estate. - Wikipedia

Robert Fripp - Guitars, Mellotron
Greg Lake - Vocals
Michael Giles - Drums
Peter Giles - Bass
Keith Tippett - Piano
Mel Collins - Saxophones, Flute

1. Peace - A Beginning (0:49)
2. Pictures of a City (8:03)
3. Cadence and Cascade (4:27)
4. In the Wake of Poseidon (7:56)
5. Peace - A Theme (1:15)
6. Cat Food (4:54)
7. The Devil's Triangle (11:39),
8. Peace - An End (1:53)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Peter Hammill - The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage (1974)

The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage is the third album by British singer-songwriter Peter Hammill. It was released on Charisma Records in 1974, during a hiatus in the activities of Hammill's progressive rock band Van der Graaf Generator. However, like many of Hammill's "solo" albums of this period, all the members of Van der Graaf Generator perform on the recording, blurring the distinction between solo and group work. Hammill has often performed the song "Modern" in concert. "The Lie (Bernini's Saint Theresa)" partly alludes to the Ecstasy of St Theresa by Bernini. "Red Shift" features Spirit guitarist Randy California on lead guitar. The lengthy "A Louse is not a Home" is a full blown prog rock epic, featuring melodramatic lyrics reminiscent of gothic horror writer Edgar Allan Poe's short story The Fall of the House of Usher, upon which Hammill would later base an opera. - Wikipedia

Peter Hammill - Guitars, Piano, Bass Guitar, Harmonium, Keyboards, Vocals, Mellotron
Randy California - Lead Guitar
Hugh Banton - Organ, Bass, Keyboards, Background Vocals
Guy Evans - Percussion, Drums
David Jackson - Flute, Saxophone


1. Modern (7:28)
2. Wilhelmina (5:17)
3. The Lie (Bernini's Saint Theresa) (5:40)
4. Forsaken Gardens (6:15)
5. Red Shift (8:11)
6. Rubicon (4:11)
7. A Louse Is Not a Home (12:13)

Yes - Fragile (1972)

Fragile is the fourth album by the British progressive rock band Yes, released on Atlanti Records, catalogue 7211. It was the band's first album with keyboardist Rick Wakeman after the departure of Tony Kaye, and the first to feature cover art by Roger Dean, his work emblematic of both the band and progressive rock as a whole. Its best known track, "Roundabout," was released in the United States in an edited version as a single. Rick Wakeman contributed to the writing of "South Side of the Sky" and "Heart of the Sunrise" by adding piano interludes to both songs, but wasn't credited due to contractual conflicts. "Cans and Brahms" is an arrangement by Wakeman of the third movement from the Fourth Symphony in E minor by Johannes Brahms, his utilization of synthesizers adapted to classical works in vogue at the time, evidenced in efforts by Wend Carlos and Isao Tomita. "We Have Heaven" is by Jon Anderson in which he sings all the vocal parts, a technique later used on his solo album Olias of Sunhillow. Bill Bruford's "Five Per Cent for Nothing" derives its instrumental passages from the rhythm line, while "The Fish" and "Mood for a Day" serve almost entirely as bass and guitar solo pieces for Chris Squire and Steve Howe, respectively. - Wikipedia

Jon Anderson - Vocals
Steve Howe - Electric Guitar, Steel-string Acoustic Guitar, Backing Vocals
Rick Wakeman - Hammond Organ, Piano, Mellotron, Moog Synthesizer
Chris Squire - Bass, Backing Vocals
Bill Bruford - Drums, Percussion


1. Roundabout (8:30)
2. Cans and Brahms (1:38)
3. We Have Heaven (1:40)
4. South Side of the Sky (8:02)
5. Five Per Cent for Nothing (0:35)
6. Long Distance Runaround (3:30)
7. The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus) (2:39)
8. Mood for a Day (3:00)
9. Heart of the Sunrise (11:27)

Camel - Mirage (1974)

Mirage is Camel's second album, released in 1974. Their self-titled debut Camel came before this one in 1973, and The Snow Goose came after it in 1975. Mirage is one of the group's most remembered albums. It features their best-known song, "Lady Fantasy", and is also a showplace for Andrew Latimer's flute, notably on "Supertwister". There are only 5 tracks on this record, two over 9 minutes. Those two are multi-part epics: "Lady Fantasy" and "Nimrodel/The Procession/The White Rider", the latter being about The Lord of the Rings. - Wikipedia

Andrew Latimer - Guitar, Flute, Vocals
Peter Bardens - Keyboards
Doug Ferguson - Bass, Vocals
Andy Ward - Drums

1. Freefall (5:53)
2. Supertwister (3:22)
3. Nimrodel / The Procession / The White Rider (9:17)
4. Earthrise (6:40)
5. Lady Fantasy (12:45)