Sunday 2 December 2018

Jimi Hendrix - Straight Ahead

Self made compilation

Disc 1: Hendrix Approved Mixes

01 Ezy Ryder
02 Freedom
03 Message To Love
04 Drifter's Escape
05 Come Down Hard On Me
06 Earth Blues
07 Dolly Dagger
08 Night Bird Flying
09 Straight Ahead
10 Astro Man
11 Room Full of Mirrors
12 In From The Storm
13 Belly Button Window

Disc 2: Posthumous Masters

01 Bleeding Heart
02 Izabella
03 Valleys Of Neptune
04 Stepping Stone
05 Drifting
06 Pali Gap
07 Beginning
08 Angel
09 Power of Soul
10 Cherokee Mist
11 Hey Baby

Jimi Hendrix may not seem entirely suitable for this blog, but there is a reason behind this post.

I fell in love with the music of Hendrix in my early teens. While at school, I collected the three Jimi Hendrix Experience albums as well as the live Band of Gypsys LP. 

I read a couple of biographies and was fascinated to learn Hendrix had an astonishing amount of unreleased material. Shortly after, during a stop at a service station on a school trip in 1993, I bought my first Hendrix bootleg. It was also the first bootleg of any artist I owned. I suppose that purchase would lead to me constructing this blog and my love of rare, secret, unreleased and hard to find music also began there.

The Jimi Hendrix Experience broke up in April 1969. From then until Hendrix's death in September 1970 he recorded material for what would of been his fourth studio album.

Hours and hours of songs in various stages have been on posthumous albums over the years, most notably on 'The Cry Of Love', 'Rainbow Bridge' and 'War Heroes'. Those three albums were compiled and mixed by engineer Eddie Kramer and long time drummer Mitch Mitchell and released shortly after Hendrix's death.

Since then, more tracks have came to light, including several mixes by Hendrix himself, making some of the versions finished masters. These songs were spread across many releases, some easier to find than others and details could be sketchy.

Hendrix was tantalisingly close to completing his vision. Although no definitive tracklisting or album title exists, the finished album would certainly have been a double, if not a triple (as some handwritten notes suggest). Prospective album titles included 'The First Rays Of The New Rising Sun', 'People, Hell & Angels' and 'Strate Ahead'.

This compilation is an attempt to collect together both the songs that Hendrix had signed off as final mixes, as well as the other songs that were under consideration. These songs are complete for the most part, with only the final mix being done without Hendrix's supervision. Some did require further overdubs, but I have not included songs for which only a backing track or demo version exist.

This music is truly psychedelic; blues, soul, pop, funk, psychedelia, heavy, beautiful, experimental and completely unique.

Robbie Basho - Best Of Basho Vol. 1

Basho Productions 1982

01 Tassajara Zen Shinji
02 Lost Lagoon Suite
03 Kowaka D'amour
04 Variations on Shakespeare Wallah
05 Song For the Queen
06 California Raga

The final post of the year is also the final Basho re-issue from Grass-Tops recordings.

This 're-issue' didn't have a new physical release or even become available through the label's Soundcloud. It was posted on Kyle's Facebook page. Thank you Kyle.

Released in 1982, Robbie sold these cassettes from his car while on tour and via mail order. It's interesting to see what Basho considered his 'best'. This release contains more of the raga inspired, exploratory playing of earlier releases.

Mystery Spring - Meet Me At The Weather Station

Treehouse Orchestra Recordings 2018

01 Meet me at the Weather Station
02 Relative Comfort
03 Cinematographer
04 Bedsit Disco Queen
05 The Reformist
06 Mind the Chaos

Newest and final release of 2018 from Treehouse Orchestra Recordings.

Mystery Spring is Marc (Brocken Spectre, Nightowl Sings) and Catherine (Shipcote and Friends). Their second release sees late night dark folk with psychedelic electronic croon.

Here's a review by David Thompson from our blog Treehouse Orchestra Recordings.

"Following on from last summer’s splendid debut album from Mystery Spring, Marc and Catherine present a 6-track EP that’s a total delight from start to finish and that, at a shorter length, perhaps holds together in a more satisfying and organic way than its predecessor.

Maybe it’s just the time of the year, but a couple of tracks here feel quite Christmassy to me, while the whole record radiates a warmth - like a mug of hot chocolate or a nip of the strong stuff - that is just right for the dark nights and the chill that’s beginning to take up residence in the air.

That’s not to give the impression of cosiness or to suggest that this isn’t a collection for all seasons. To the contrary, the songs here are all very strong and evocative and, at just shy of a 20 minute running time, it’s a record that’s just right for a listen at one sitting all year round.

The title track and opener gets the EP off to a low-key beginning. It’s an intimate and atmospheric number, with a whispered lead vocal from Marc, suggesting secrets being shared and giving the whole track a feeling of gentle mystery.

“Relative Comfort” is folky pop with Catherine’s lovely voice up front. It’s an infectious sing-along number, like something that might have popped up on Cherry Red Records in the mid-80s, but essentially it’s a classic Marc love song about a couple who are head over heels and out in the open air – perhaps hiding from everyone who can’t understand how they feel and might just get in the way (or break the spell).

“Cinematographer” is evocative of early ‘80s post-punk from its very title to the woozy Farsifa feel and cryptic lyrics while “Bedsit Disco Queen” is a lovely piano-led ballad with more than a touch of “Another Green World” Eno. The latter was recorded in one take and has a title borrowed from the memoir by Tracey Thorn (another Cherry Red artiste - the clues are building up, but maybe they’ll lead us nowhere in the end).

“You’re no reformist and I doubt I can be reformed”. And so “The Reformist” spins another esoteric yarn amid a reflective countryish piece with keening violins and crisp acoustic guitar, courtesy of Ste Benson (who also does the honours on “Relative Comfort” and is the only performer on the record other than Marc and Catherine).

Closing track “Mind the Chaos” is, despite the title, not really chaotic at all, but rather gently off-kilter and subtly disconcerting, while never being less than  perky and charming. It has an almost classical feel to the instrumentation (with a touch of the fairground) and the spirit of Jeffrey Lewis (and also perhaps Syd Barrett) lurking somewhere in the background. It is a song that sounds as if it’s being made up as it goes along, looking for either resolution or blissful oblivion, while not forgetting to ask important questions such as “where can I get free shoes” and “which colour will you choose”?

“Meet Me At The Weather Station” is a delightful concoction – a beguiling blend of voices, acoustic instruments and understated electronica (superbly mixed by Mr A Popple) -  that never outstays its welcome.  In fact, I would very surprised if you didn’t want to play it again as soon as it finishes – I’ve listened to it at least 5 times while I’ve been writing this review and I’m still ready for more. After all, doesn’t everyone need free shoes?"

Extremely limited compact disc and free download available from our Bandcamp.

Saturday 3 November 2018

Egisto Macchi - Il Deserto

Ayna 1974 / Cinedelic Records 2015

01 L'Eco Delle Gole
02 Segni Preistorici
03 Cammelli
04 Suoni Per Un Rito
05 La Notte Del Deserto
06 Le Genti Del Deserto
07 Ghibli
08 Sabbia Mobile
09 Il Sahara

I haven't posted any Egisto Macchi in a while, so here is one of his finest; 1974's 'Il Deserto'.

Avant classical that goes places few recordings do, highly recommended.

Note; this 2015 Cinedelic reissue has longer edits than the original album, rejoice!

The Heartwood Institute - Live at Warwick Bazaar 28/07/18

Self Release 2018

Witch Phase Four
Age of Aquarius
The Calling
Witch Phase Three
Sun Wheel

This summer saw Warwick Bazaar host it's first live performances.

The Heartwood Institute is electronic music from my home county of Cumbria. Field recordings, hauntology, public information films, ambient, Krautrock and all with folk horror overtones.

Fantastic live set from one of my favourite electronic performers.

Free download here.

Brocken Spectre - Abstractions//Attractions

Treehouse Orchestra Recordings 2018

01 Beyond Nostalgia
02 Clap Hands
03 Downtown Abstractions
04 Art Defacer
05 Colour Fucker
06 Stockholm Cancelled
07 Ended Here
08 (In) Dreams
09 UYA

The latest release from the stable of musicians and artists to which I belong; the new Brocken Spectre album is post punk, art rock, alt-rock noise. I play guitar and sometimes sing.

Free download and limited CD available at Bandcamp.

Monday 15 October 2018

Various Artists - Halloween 2014

01 Former Selves - In Waves
02 Gal Costa - Segunda
03 The Monkees - You Just May Be the One
04 Eugene Ormandy - No. 7 'Aquarium'
05 James Blackshaw - Fantômas- Le Faux Magistrat, Pt. 2
06 Michael Stearns - As the Earth Kissed the Moon (Excerpt)
07 Kaki King - Night After Sidewalk
08 Tess Parks - Somedays
09 Francis MwaKitme - Sikepa Inongwa Mukaye
10 Ahmed Abdul-Malik - E-lail (The Night)
11 lubos Fiser - Matching Mirrors/Morgiana's Prowl
12 Ryan Mcgregor - Variation One
13 Nico - Frozen Warnings
14 Foresteppe - Sedniv

Bonus posts in time for Halloween.

Here's a mixtape, still played around this time of year, nice feel.

Bobby Beausoleil - The Lucifer Rising Suite

The Ajna Offensive 2014

Disc 1:

1 Lucifer Rising I, 1967
2 Dark Passage
3 Hellion Rebellion
4 Sleeping Dragon
5 Dance Of The Fire Demons

Disc 2:

1 Fallen Angel Blues, Pt I
2 Fallen Angel Blues, Pt II
3 Electric Blue
4 Tear It Down
5 No Going Back

Disc 3:

1 Metamorph
2 Penumbra
3 Beacon

Disc 4:

1 Motion Picture Soundtrack:Lucifer Rising, Pt I
2 Motion Picture Soundtrack:Lucifer Rising, Pt II
3 Motion Picture Soundtrack:Lucifer Rising, Pt III
4 Motion Picture Soundtrack:Lucifer Rising, Pt IV
5 Motion Picture Soundtrack:Lucifer Rising, Pt V
6 Motion Picture Soundtrack:Lucifer Rising, Pt VI

This is the full tale of the Lucifer Rising soundtrack by Bobby Beausoleil.

The first disc represents Beausoleil's first attempt at the soundtrack in 1967. Recording with The Magick Powerhouse of Oz in San Francisco, this was rejected by Kenneth Anger. World psych freak out jams played live with a Haight-Ashbury/San Francisco pysch vine.

The next two discs represent the recordings made by Beausoleil while incarcerated. Between 1976 and 1979, Beausoleil set about recording Lucifer Rising using constructed instruments via mail order and the battered old prison instruments. These recordings range from near ambient to blues to psych and back.

The final disc is a remastered version of the soundtrack. Some of the greatest dark psych ever made. The original entry on this blog can be found here.

This set was originally released as a vinyl box set in 2009.

As a side note, I purchased this box set on a trip to America a few years ago. It was in Irvington vinyl in Indiana, below this sign:

Anton LaVey - The Satanic Mass

Murgenstrumm 1968

1 The Satanic Mass
2 Prologue
3 Book Of Satan, Verse I
4 Verse II
5 Verse III
6 Verse IV
7 Verse V
8 Hymn Of The Satanic Empire, Or The Battle Hymn Of The Apocalypse

Since it's Halloween, here's an early occult artifact. Recorded live at The Church of Satan, San Francisco, Anton LaVey recites The Satanic Mass.

Originally released in 1968, this Amarillo Records CD reissue contains the bonus track 'Hymn Of The Satanic Empire, Or The Battle Hymn Of The Apocalypse'.

Monday 1 October 2018

Ghosts Of Hobbs End - Amsterdam/America

Treehouse Orchestra Recordings. TOR58.

01 Amsterdam
02 America

The latest offering from my own label of friends and artists is a new one; Ghosts of Hobbs End is myself, Jill Wallace (Brocken Spectre) and Davis Thompson (Cat of Tomorrow, The Dead West).

This cassette release is a mix of improvised jams, radio, field recordings and drones. Recorded over the last year and a half, the final collages were performed in May and July of this year.

Artwork by Britany Gunderson.

As always, there is a free download at Bandcamp. The cassette version is available for a limited time.

Taj Mahal Travellers - Oz Days Live

Oz Records 1973

01 Oz Days Live Improvisation

As a bonus to any Taj Mahal Travellers fans out there, here is the live recording from the 1973 Various Artists album 'Oz days Live'.

The Oz Rock Cafe in Tokyo staged a benefit concert in which various Japanese underground artists performed and had the recordings make up this album.

The first two sides of this double album are straight rock 'n' roll performances from the likes of  Miyako Ochi and Acid Seven and unfortunately they're not particularly interesting. 

The Taj Mahal Travellers performance takes up side 3 and is represented here. Rougher sounding than their albums, this is a mesmerising performance, with field recordings and other instruments being as dominant as drones.

Side 4 was taken up with recordings from the Les Rallizes Dénudés performance. Next year, I shall start posting on this most intense, psychedelic and ground breaking band.

Robbie Basho - Live in Germany

Basho Productions 1983 / Grass-Tops Recordings 2016

01 Redwood Ramble
02 Fandango
03 Easter
04 Rocky Mountain Raga
05 Cathedral et Fleur de Lis
06 Chocolate Cake (Ackermann Special)
07 Silky Jane
08 The Grail & The Lotus
09 Pavan India
10 Variations on Clair de Lune
11 California Raga

This release from Basho should really be considered canon; it was distributed by Robbie himself. He sold at shows and via mail order, a practise he did a lot in later years.

Thanks again to Kyle and Grass-Tops Recordings for preserving this cassette from total obscurity.

Sunday 2 September 2018

Taj Mahal Travellers - Live Stockholm July, 1971

Drone Syndicate 2000

01 Live '71, Pt. 1
02 Live '71, Pt. 2

The third and final available album from improvisational drone ensemble Taj Mahal Travellers.

Released a few times throughout the 2000's, this recording pre-dates the two official contemporary TMT albums.

Wonderful abstract drone.

Various Artists - September 2011

01 Dominic Frontiere - The Invaders - Main Title Theme
02 Damon - Don't You Feel Me
03 Gandalf - Can You Travel In The Dark Alone
04 Bread, Love & Dreams - Brother John
05 Flames - Solitude
06 Lula Cortes & Ze Ramalho - Nas Paredes Da Pedra Encantada, Os Segredos Talhados Por Sume
07 Can Am Des Puig - The Cauldron Of Regeneration
08 Mike Tingley - It's Time To Leave Her
09 The Golden Dawn - My Time
10 Michael Yonkers Band - Boy In The Sandbox
11 Fuchsia - Shoes and Ships
12 July - The Way
13 Principal Edward's Magic Theatre - Sacrifice
14 Dominic Frontiere - The Invaders

Another old mixtape. Still holds up well, with a lot of rare psychedelia. 

It pre-dates this blog and along with other early mixtapes, is the inspiration for the start of all this.

Cover star is Soledad Miranda.

Dillard & Clark

Bootleg 1969

01 No Longer a Sweetheart of Mine
02 Why Not Your Baby
03 Wall Around Your Heart
04 Through the Morning, Through the Night
05 So Sad
06 Dark Hollow
07 Kansas City Southern
08 Four Walls
09 Polly
10 Don't Let Me Down

Another fan made Gene Clark album, this time, re-arranging the second and final album from Dillard & Clark.

1968's 'The Fantastic Expedition Of Dillard & Clark' was a classic from start to finsh. A little confusing coming after the psychedelic, beat and baroque 'Gene Clark With The Gosdin Brothers' (clues can be found in unreleased recordings), but collaborating with banjo player Doug Dillard produced a beautiful album of folk, country and bluegrass.

Unfortunately most critics agreed that 1969's follow up 'Through The Morning, Through The Night' was a bit of a come down. More cover versions, less Gene originals and vocals and the introduction of Donna Washburn as a further vocalist all contributed to this.

There is however, some wonderful songs on the released album, as well as some songs that weren't.

I retained 'No Longer a Sweetheart of Mine', 'So Sad', 'Kansas City Southern', 'Four Walls', 'Polly', 'Don't Let Me Down' and the title track from the original album. I added two outtakes from the album sessions; 'Dark Hollow' and 'Wall Around Your Heart'. Finally I included the wonderful non-album single 'Why Not Your Baby'.

Thursday 2 August 2018

The Electric Prunes - I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)

Reprise 1967

01 I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)
02 Bangles
03 Onie
04 Are You Lovin' Me More (But Enjoy It Less)
05 Train For Tomorrow
06 Sold To The Highest Bidder
07 Get Me To The World On Time
08 About A Quarter To Nine
09 The King Is In The Counting House
10 Luvin
11 Try Me On For Size
12 The Toonerville Trolley

The Electric Prunes were a psychedelic garage rock band from L.A. and this is there debut album from 1967.

There seemed to be no end of absolutely terrible contracts given out to bands throughout the 1960's. The burden for The Electric Prunes was they were contractually bound to record the songs of songwriting team Annette Tucker and Nancie Mantz. On this first album, the band only had one original they wrote themselves.

There are a couple of songs that sound out of place and the band made no secret of their frustration with having to record these compositions. Some tracks though, like the title track and 'Get Me to the World On Time' are garage classics.

The real highlight is that the band were allowed to apply their recording ideas and experiments to these songs. They employ fuzztone, tremelo, sound effects and electronic composition.

The Electric Prunes had a strange career and we'll be looking at their other releases in the coming months.

Taj Mahal Travellers - August 1974

CBS Japan 1975

01 I
02 II
03 III
04 IV

The Taj Mahal Travellers entered Nippon Columbia Studio No.1 in Tokyo to record their second album. The final album released in the groups lifetime, it was a mammoth 88 minute double of improvised abstract and drone.

Brocken Spectre - Drive By Election

Treehouse Orchestra Recordings 2018

01 Drive By Election

The first release in over a year from TOR. 

The re-formed Brocken Spectre (in which I play guitar) release this single ahead of a new album which is due in the Autumn.

Stream or free download at Bandcamp.

Monday 2 July 2018

Various Artists - Summer 2018

01 Frankie Seay & The Soul Riders - Soul Food
02 Bruno Nicolai - Pursuited-Jennifer's Recall
03 Augustus Pablo & King Tubby - Keep On Dubbing
04 Indian Puddin And Pipe - Hashish
05 Nils Frahm - All Melody
06 Talk Talk - Stump
07 Sachiko Kanenobu - Anata Kara Toku E
08 Blues Magoos - I'll Go Crazy
09 Satya Sai Maitreya Kali - Ice and Snow
10 Colin Stetson - Spindrift
11 Art - Love Is Real (Unreleased Version)
12 Thane Russal & Three - Security
13 Goat - Let It Burn (Radio Edit)
14 Gu - Marianne
15 Modesty Blaise - Carol Mountain

Time for another mixtape. It's a double helping this month, soundtracking this beautiful sunshine.

Mellow Candle ‎- Swaddling Songs

Deram 1972

01 Heaven Heat
02 Sheep Season
03 Silversong
04 The Poet And The Witch
05 Messenger Birds
06 Dan The Wing
07 Reverend Sisters
08 Break Your Token
09 Buy Or Beware
10 Vile Excesses
11 Lonely Man
12 Boulders On My Grave

Not sure why it's taken me this long to post Mellow Candle's 'Swaddling Songs'. It's classic psych folk, with a prog hint here and there. The best moments are the spooky songs, 'Reverend Sisters' being a favourite.

Original copies go for thousands and remains the only album the band released in it's lifetime.

Various Artists - Psych Funk Sa-Re-Ga! Seminar: Aesthetic Expressions Of Psychedelic Funk Music In India 1970-1983

World Psychedelic Funk Classics 2010

01 The Black Beats - The Mod Trade
02 X'Lents - Psychedelia
03 Kalyanji Anandji - Somebody To Love (Edit)
04 Kalyanji Anandji - Bairaag Dance Music (Edit)
05 R.D. Burman - Dance Music From Hare Rama Hare Krishna
06 R.D. Burman - Lekar Ham Diwana Dil
07 R.D. Burman - Freak Out Music
08 Bappi Lahari - Everybody Dance With Me
09 Kalyanji Anandji with R.D. Burman - Dharmatma Theme Music
10 Asha Bhosle - Dum Maro Dum Live (Edit)
11 Usha Khanna - Hotel Incidental Music (Edit)
12 Klaus Doldinger - Sitar Beat
13 Sapan Jagmohan - Meri Aakhon Mein Ek Sapna Hai (Edit)
14 Keith Kanga - Butterfly (Version Two)
15 Atomic Forest - Mary Long
16 Usha Khanna - Tera Jasia Pyara Koi Nahin
17 Hemant Bhosle - Phir Teri Yaad
18 R.D. Burman - Aaj Mera Dil
19 Kalyanji Anandji with Manhar & Anand - Hum Tumhe Chate Hain (Edit)
20 Ilaiyaraaja Feat. Vani Jairam & Chorus - Thabimayil

Another great psych/funk comp from a few years back that now seems a little hard to find.

Taj Mahal Travellers - July 15, 1972

CBS/Sony Japan 1972

01 The Taj-Mahal Travelers Between 6:20~6:46P.M.
02 The Taj-Mahal Travelers Between 7:03~7:15P.M.
03 The Taj-Mahal Travelers Between 7:50~8:05P.M.

 Takehisa Kosugi had his Taj Mahal Travellers improvise live performances on beaches, hillsides, art galleries and more. This is Japanese avant garde/drone at its finest.

Recorded at Sohgetsu Hall, Tokyo, Japan.

The Velvet Underground - Live at The Matrix San Francisco 1969

Bootleg 1969

01 I'm Waiting for the Man
02 What Goes On
03 Some Kinda Love
04 Over You
05 We're Gonna Have a Real Good Time Together
06 Beginning to See the Light
07 Lisa Says
08 Rock and Roll
09 Pale Blue Eyes
10 I Can't Stand It Anymore
11 Venus in Furs
12 There She Goes Again
13 Sister Ray
14 Heroin
15 White Light-White Heat
16 I'm Set Free
17 After Hours
18 Sweet Jane

I thought it was about time I started posting some of my Velvets boots. 

The Matrix shows are legendary; providing a lot of the material for the '1969: The Velvet Underground and Lou Reed' double album and numerous bootlegs.

Robbie Basho - Live at St. Mary's College of California 1976

Grass-Tops Recordings 2016

01 If I Give My Heart To You
02 Pasha
03 Song of Kings
04 The Lady, She Is In Waiting

Live EP of Robbie in 1976 featuring unreleased material. Digital only release via the Grass-Tops Recordings Soundcloud page.

Friday 1 June 2018

Various Artists - Rare Kosmische Vol.1

01 Between - Syn
02 Haizea - Egunarn Hastapena
03 Drum Circus - Now It Hurts You
04 Agitation Free - You Play For Us Today
05 Michael Bundt - The Brain Of Oskar Panizza
06 Hölderlin - Waren Wir
07 Mythos - Oriental Journey
08 Sand - May Rain
09 Staff Carpenborg And The Electric Corona - All Men Shall Be Brothers of Ludwig
10 Embryo - You Don't Know What's Happening
11 Ash Ra Tempel - Le Songe d'Or
12 Joy Unlimited - Flos Lividus I
13 Vinegar - Fleisch

Made this a few years ago.

Satya Sai Maitreya Kali - Apache

Akashic Records 1972

01. Ice and Snow
02. Black Swan
03. Color Fantasy
04. Voodoo Spell
05. Salesman
06. Music Box
07. Love Is Our Existence
08. One Last Farewell
09. I'm Walkin' Solo
10. Silk and Ivory
11. Swim
12. Revelation

Craig Vincent Smith had a pretty shiny, wholesome entry into the music industry; he even appeared on The Andy Williams show.

By the mid sixties, he was rubbing shoulders with The Beach Boys and The Monkees and his band, The Penny Arkade, were recording in Hollywood. By 1968, Smith was associating with the Manson Family and getting heavily into TM and Eastern philosophy. He quit the band and went travelling.

The next two years saw Smith change his name to Maitreya Kali, travel to Asia, back home and then onto South America. All the while being a heavy user of hashish and LSD. During this time he suffered with severe mental health problems.

Back in America in 1971, he recorded this album and self released it.

Total downer folk with a Neil Young vibe. Reminiscent of Arthur and sits nicely with other loner folk records of the era.

Robbie Basho - Home Again 1978

Grass-Tops Recordings 2016

01 The Butterfly of Wonder
02 Ride the Buffalo
03 Omar Khayyam Country
04 Memorial
05 Joseph (of the Nez Perce)
06 Roses and Gold
07 The Polish Rider
08 Call on the Wind
09 Across The Great Divide
10 American Sunday

One of the high lights of the Grass-Tops Records releases was this album's worth of demos, recorded by Basho himself at home in 1978.

Recorded while Basho didn't have a record deal (he would sign with Windham Hill Records later that year), this posthumous release shows how 1977-1983 was one of Robbie's most creative periods. 

Tuesday 1 May 2018

Various Artists - Picnic at Hanging Rock Soundtrack


01. Gheorghe Zamfir and Marcel Cellier - Doina Sus Pe Culmea Dealului
02. Jen Jando - Prelude No 1 in C Major
03. Bruce Smeaton - The Ascent
04. Gheorghe Zamfir and Marcel Cellier - Doina Lui Petru Unc
05. Bruce Smeaton - The Rock
06. Unknown - Romance from Eine Kleine Nachtmusik
07. Unknown - Andante Cantabile from String Quartet No. 1, Op. 11
08. Istan Antal with the Hungarian State Orchestra - Adagio un Poco Mosso

Picnic at Hanging Rock is an Australian film from 1975, directed by Peter Weir. It is a wonderfully ominous, atmospheric piece of (Australian) folk horror.

Stunning visuals aside, the soundtrack sets the tone for the film and has the same haunting quality in places. Romanian pan pipes sit alongside classical pieces and two slightly experimental original compositions from Bruce Smeaton.

The soundtrack has never had a commercial release.

Robbie Basho - Demos 1975

Grass-Tops Recordings 2016

01. Fandango
02. Legend of Mt. Tam
03. Bride of Thunder
04. Tree of Life
05. Libation

This Grass-Tops release was exclusive to the now defunct Soundcloud page.

An E.P.'s worth of demos home recorded after Basho had left Vanguard. His next release on a label was 1978's 'Visions of the Country' on Windham Hill and most of these songs were left unrecorded.

Various Artists - Spring 2013

01. Fever Tree - Imitation Situation (Tocatta Fugue)
02. Sunforest - Where Are You
03. The Search Party - Renee Child
04. Fifty Foot Hose - Rose
05. The Jelly Bean Bandits - Another August Revisited
06. Robbie Basho - Salangadou
07. Belbury Poly - The Geography
08. Big Blood - She-Wander(er)
09. Binarii Weave - Hammer's Smile
10. Deep Magic - Motionless
11. Golden Brown - Wild Bill Jones
12. James Blackshaw - Holly

Another old but seasonal mixtape. The album is split into old music (tracks 1-6) and new (tracks 7-12). Compiled in strange times and a personal favourite.

Monday 2 April 2018

Robbie Basho - Portrait of Basho as a Young Dragoon

Grass-Tops Recordings 2015

01 Theme On Autumn
02 Pasha
03 French Song
04 Song Of God
05 Charles Ives Paints Modern America
06 Portrait Of Fahey As A Young Dragoon

Probably the best of the Grass-Tops original album issues.

A collection of recordings documenting some of Robbie Basho’s most exploratory early career live material (circa 1967-1969).

Various Artists - April 2012

01 Top Drawer - Song of a Sinner
02 Fern Knight - Awake, Angel Snake
03 This Heat - Health And Efficiency
04 Karen Beth - Last Time
05 Seven Feathers Rainbow - Lily Cottage
06 Black Widow - In Ancient Days
08 The Music Machine - Come On In
09 Lanterns - Dir Tup
10 The Manson Family - Is There No One In Your World But You?
11 Linda Perhacs - Parallelograms
12 Dark - Live For Today
13 Dom - Dream

Mixtape from six years ago with dark, witchy tones.

The Byrds - Universal Mind Decoder

Bootleg 1968

01. Artificial Energy
02. Goin' Back
03. Triad
04. Natural Harmony
05. Draft Morning
06. Wasn't Born To Follow
07. Lady Friend
08. Old John Robertson
09. Get To You
10. Tribal Gathering
11. Change Is Now
12. Dolphin's Smile

Dig the Byrds? Like DIY albums? Then this is for you.

I've made re-imagined versions of most of the Byrds albums, this is essentially a reworking of "The Notorious Byrd Brothers", my favorite L.P. of theirs.

There isn't too much change to be fair; 'Space Odyssey' has been removed to make way for two tracks left off the final running order.

'Triad' was voted down by Hillman and McGuinn in favour of 'Goin' Back', a move that angered Crosby as he thought original compositions should precedence over cover versions.

'Lady Friend' was left off because of it's poor sales as a single prior to the album. Unbelievable really; the song is one of their greatest and most ambitious.

Sunday 4 March 2018

Robbie Basho - Live at Broadway United Methodist Church

Grasstops Recordings 2014

01 The Grail & The Lotus
02 Cathedrals et Fleur de lis
03 Prologue for Pavan India
04 Pavan India (Pavan Hindustan)
05 Claire de Lune (California version)

Between 2013 and 2016, Grasstops Recordings embarked on a remaster and reissue series of Robbie Basho releases. 

Original albums like 'Rainbow Thunder' and 'Visions of the Country' received beautiful treatments; although these were only released in small numbers, both the sound quality and artwork were gorgeous.

Alongside these were new archival releases; home demos and live recordings. Whole new albums such as 'Portrait of Basho as a Young Dragoon 1967-69' saw release and the Grass-Tops Soundcloud put out compilations of demos and live tracks.

It seemed like Basho was finally receiving the care and attention his music deserved.

Along the way something went wrong and I'm not quite sure what. I had all of these on pre-order, such was my excitement at every announcement, particularly when 'Bouquet' was due for release. A message on Grass-Tops revealed that the remaster would only be available in digital, but the physical release had to scrapped, due to (unexplained) copyright issues. 'Bouquet' came out, digital only (another beautiful job) and free of charge.

No other physical releases appeared and the Grass-Tops Bandcamp disappeared alongside the Soundcloud page, taking all of the digital only material with it.

I'm not sure what happened, although I've heard rumors of S*ny interference. 

As I have stated before; one of the inspirations behind starting this blog was to make the music of Robbie Basho available again. I chose not to include the Grass-Tops remasters as Kyle Fosburgh seemed to be putting his own money (and obviously, a lot of love) into these projects.

Now, for whatever reason, these releases are unavailable again, so it's maybe time this blog saw some new Basho.

This release was a preview to the reissue of 1976's 'Art of the Acoustic Steel String Guitar 6 & 12'. A beautiful live recording featuring Robbie playing at his best.

I offer my sincere thanks to Kyle for the wonderful work he done.

I hope you don't mind.

P.S. If any reader wants to clear up the mystery in the comments, please do!