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RECOMMENDATIONS - March 2014

 

Archived recommendations go back to Spring 2000.

Recently I’ve been trying very hard to buy more records. Like a weirdy fever has descended upon me. I’ve been travelling to old record shops, going to boot fayres too if I can get away with it. Some records I have been after have turned up and I’ve been doing quite a lot of DJing too which has only added to the fever. In fact the other night we did a Vision On and I played loads of things I’ve recently found and it was very enjoyable indeed. In fact two ladies in paper hats came up to me came up to me and told me what excellent tunes I’d been playing. Here are just some of the recent finds and old crap that has recently surfaced from the collection.

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Cipriani’s Concorde Affair:
Ever since seeing this Japanese only LP in a soundtrack book I have been obsessed with finding it. And yes, it only took about 14 years, but I finally got one, Anticlimax? No! It has some really super duper things on it which has sort of tempted me to do a disaster movie OST show, which may sound like a bad idea bearing in mind that plane has just disappeared with two hundred and something people inside and they still can’t find it. By the way, if you live in the UK, go to Duxford air museum. It has the first Concorde that broke the trans Atlantic record. It really is a mind-blowing museum on every level. And some levels you may not have thought of.

 

Tape music from Adis:
This album by Hailu Mergia was first played to me when I was doing a music job for the JJ Abrahams “S” book. I thought it was amazing and then didn’t buy it. Then a few months later I saw a copy and remembered it was really very good indeed. I believe the recording was originally only released on cassette. I play it at home in the evenings and it has this bizarre way of sounding all busy and odd but actually being strangely hypnotic and very calming. The cues are long jams, seemingly without any real regard to form or structure, but manage to have some at the same time. Musically it does remind of being at a hamster’s funeral. Hailu Mergia plays the accordion by the way.

Music bu this French Crazy Person:
During a short shopping trip to Kirstina Records they told me about this load of LPs that had just been turned up in Paris. The artist is called Luc Marianni. Apparently someone was speaking to him about re-releasing the peculiar electronic LPs he made in the 1980s, and he said there was no need as he still had boxes and boxes of unplayed, unsold originals in his house. So masses of these LP have arrived here in the UK and I bought one, because I didn’t like the other two as much. They are electronic and crazy and I cannot play them in front of the kids as they are already raving mad and bouncing off the walls and and this would just intensify any front room situations which are already very intense. The artwork on these Lps is quite poor by the way. I think Luc may have done it himself with a Rotring pen and some watercolours.

 


The Hired Hand:
The blissful soundtrack by Bruce Langhorn to the strange Peter Fonda western has been issued and available on CD for a while. Then, following current trends, a label in the USA has issued it on very limited wax. It was available here for loads of money and I didn’t buy one as I thought pah! That’s way too expensive and then when they were sold out I realized I really wanted one and ended up paying the high price PLUS postage from the USA. The moral of the story; if you really want an LP but think it is too expensive, wait a bit and it may get a bit more expensive, but then again it might not depending on several factors.

 

City Of Glass:
This is one of the LPs written about extensively in Irwin Chusid’s Songs In The Key Of Z. It is a most strange trip into classical jazz madness and will be a 50p friday album shortly so you can visit the city for yourself.

 

Some Alessandroni Jazz:
It’s been a long while since I got my grubby mitts on some more Alessandroni and now I have. Bloody marvelous. Blood rare. Better than I thought / hoped. And like many of these super obscure Alessandroni LPs, there are about 10 tracks, half of which are poor, a quarter of which are quite good, and the other quarter are just on another level to just about anything you may have been expecting.

 

Kraftwerk’s First two LPs:
I read in the most recent Record Collector magazine (on the letters pages) that a bloke had bought a copy of the classic Kraftwerk Kraftwerk two LP set in a record shop for £60. He thought this was a bargain as it was the super rare spiral label set. However it turned out that his was a dodgy bootleg from a few years ago as it was not in a gatefold sleeve and then I remembered that about 15 years ago myself and Gareth Cherrystones had been talking about this very album (which incidentally is the first two German pressed Kraftwerk LPs released here for the first time as one release) and he’d had a chat with Pete who ran Psychotron Records who reckoned that the spiral edition never existed, to which I said I’d bought one at the old Bath flea market for a whopping £15 back in about 1991. So I had to take pictures of it with the labels showing and email it to Pete which back then was a bit trickier and more fiddly than it is today. Anyway, to my delight the Record Collector piece revealed that the original 2 LP gatefold spiral vertigo Kraftwerk release is now worth about £350 which almost caused a small panic attack round here, so I ran upstairs, got it out and have played it loads since. But carefully of course. This 2 LP set is normally followed by Autobahn.

 

Coronation Street:
This may or may not be a white reggae record – I think it is but cannot find out who The I-Royals actually are. This was their first and only release from 1983, a clever and quite perfect reggae version of the Coronation Street theme, which I play out quite often at the moment as it makes me laugh and normally makes everyone else laugh too, with a bit of slow skanking thrown in.

 

San Francisco Revisited:
Well, Spring is here and then Summer will be a cumin in, so it’s time to start cranking up the happy sunshine music. I bought this LP as it was pointed out to me as one to grab by my chum Simon at a record fayre. He said “you should buy that” so I did. He was right as it’s most excellent in a modal style. And will be available as a 50p Friday treat shortly too.

 

Quarteto Novo:
Killer Brazilian bunch including Hector P. These guys sure knew what they were doing. It’s unlikely, however, that their lovely music will be accompanying football montages in the World Cup this Summer because it’s just too good. I reckon that’ll be all Batucadas and that.

 

The First Simon And G Album:
Issued on the Allegro label here in 1967, this probably sold quite poorly. I bought it as I like a bit of S & G and I know the words to many of their classics, but I’d never heard this and it was in one of George’s “three for a fiver” boxes at Spitalfields record fair last week. I bought it, played it, and to my surprise it sounds bugger all like the S & G the world knows and loves. In fact it’s more like a strange 1950s high school rockabilly romp. Thank heavens they were given a second chance or worked out that they badly needed to change musical tack in order to succeed. That said, there is a track on this album I do like and will now play out at lively craft evenings too.

 

A Cannibal God LP:
This is one of those weirdly horror nasty shocker movies with Stacey Keach and Ursula Undress in. All about a trip up an amazon-style river, they meet cannibals, get tied to trees, people and things get eaten, there's blue makeup and blood and gore everywhere etc, all accompanied by a strange electric pumpy tense score by an Italian.

 

This stupid Philicorda record:
Made for use with the classic electronic keyboard, this 7” stupid thing is brilliantly stupid. This would possibly explain why we have found each other.

 

Textures:
This is the only Brian Eno library record. I sold one recently for Resonance FM, which is a charity radio station. It really is a lovely library record, classic Eno in that way that only Brian Eno can do Eno. This apparently is an impossible record to find, and will not be repressed or reissued either as there are “complications”. I know because I tried. When I put it the spare copy up for sale I said it was possibly the rarest of all British pressed library records. The story behind it is that it was pressed, then never sent out to the usual TV stations etc, instead the CD was pressed an issued, because in 1989 everyone had stopped using record players. Yes, of course they had. Up until the record appeared on ebay many people had no idea the record even existed. A few more copies may well surface now, but the whole thing is a bit of a mystery as no one knows quite how many exist. If you are interested to hear it, the whole album is up on YouTube. Now there’s a surprise.

 



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