Sunday, September 30, 2007

The National Gallery - Performing Musical Interpretations Of The Paintings Of Paul Klee (1968)

Literally an 'art-rock' concept album from Cleveland, inspired by the works of artist Paul Klee (1879-1940) and complete with a glossy leaflet with lyrics and pictures of some of his paintings.

A fusion of harmonious folk, pop and avant garde with some psychy touches, culminating in its most memorable track Long Hair Soulful with stoned vocals and acid-etched guitar. This had been released on 45 in 1967 in an abridged form and credited to Bhagavad Gita, backed by an instrumental version of the same (Philips 40485, with PS). The instrumental take can be heard on Beyond The Calico Wall CD (not on the LP version).

The musicians themselves don't get a name-check, just a picture - three guys and a gal.

Composers Roger Karshner and Charles Mangione were involved with several other Cleveland area acts and Karshner was manager of one of the city's more successful sixties bands, The Outsiders.

It's worth noting that several tracks on this album were also recorded, in jazzier versions, by the Gap Mangione Trio on the album Diana In The Autumn Wind(GRC 9001) 1968, with Charles Mangione, Steve Gadd and Tony Levin. Mangione kept on recording throughout the seventies, with at least three albums on A&M between 1976 and 1979. (Max Waller)

Friday, September 14, 2007

V.A. - Fairytales Can Come True - UK Popsike From The Late '60s (2007)

Late 60s UK psychedelia -- full of glowing harmonies, chiming strings, propulsively rhythmic and groovy experimentalist touches -- compiled and overseen by contemporary psych wunderkind Nick Saloman, aka Bevis Frond! What really makes this first volume of period pop psych from Salomon's Psychic Circle imprint is the craft involved in each and every tune. The guitars swirl and the vocal harmonies soar in a big way -- and many of the tunes are built from deconstructed pop, rock, folk and r&b and recast for the psych generation in a really wonderful way. Most of the artists and tunes are completely fresh to our ears -- and here's hoping the Psychic Circle label will spin out equally wonderful comps for years to come! 20 tracks in all:

1. Summer Of Last Year - The Pyramid
2. Bring A Little Lovin' - Los Bravos
3. You Kissed Him - Fred Lloyd
4. See The People - Lomax Alliance
5. Cousin Jane - Barry Benson
6. Boy Needs A Girl, A - Dreams
7. Mary Ann She - Grisbydyke
8. Fairy Tales Can Come True - San Francisco Earthquake
9. Trees - Gallagher/Lyle
10. Umbrella Man - Searchers
11. Penelope Breedlove - Dave Christie
12. Nine To Five - Promise
13. Keeping My Head Above Water - Peppermint Circus
14. Look Away - Virgil Brothers
15. Upside Down Inside Out - Snappers
16. Pumpkin Mini - Katch 22
17. Just Another Wedding Day - Brian Connell & The Roundsound
18. Saturday Town - The Darlings
19. Daytime - Hedgehoppers Anonymous
20. Help Me To Help Myself - Roulettes

Special thanks to debcat70!