Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Another private pressing from a band that recorded a single record only to disappear without trace immediately after. Peter Stark's Mushroom Country, with its unusual phallic mushroom artwork and 'cosmic folk' groove, has become an extremely collectable album of late. Recorded at The Mike studio in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the album appeared on the Montage label in 1976, although for some reason no catalogue number was assigned. The album features 8 original works by Stark and his brother Ben, and a particularly fine cover of Donovan's 'Hey Gyp'. Musically, the album takes us on a tour of genres, from the instrumental 'Raga For Bayleaf', the folky 'You Make Me Feel' and the blues of 'Searching'. There is a real charm about Mushroom Country, with its varied instrumental accompaniment to Stark's vocals and fluid guitar and a 'we're having a great time doing this' vibe that pervades throughout. Hippie folk? Well, possibly, but none the worse for that. (Forcedexposure.com)
Posted by zille71 at 8:03 PM
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Despite the fact that two-thirds of Damo Suzuki's lyrics are incomprehensible, the power of Suzuki's delivery makes it okay. Vernissage, released in 1998, features the sprawling songs that guarantee Damo Suzuki Band will never get airplay on the local station (the shortest song on this record is over 8 minutes, the longest an epochal 26:39). Ever since Damo Suzuki added his primal vocal power to Krautrock pioneers Can, he has been exploding conceptions of what constitutes how rock is done. Take for example the fact that, beginning with Vernissage, his band apparently intend only to release live albums -- some of which are seven CDs long (P.R.O.M.I.S.E.). Listeners will recognize in Vernissage what could be described as the Police meets Pink Floyd as interpreted by Can. Here you have former Can drummer Jaki Leibezeit's trademark rhythms holding down occasional bursts of '80s-style keyboard and David Gilmore-esque arpeggios, while Suzuki's howls swell and shrink as the obvious impresario sees fit. If you have the head space to drift in and out of your own thoughts during a 20-plus-minute song, then Vernissage might provide a comforting aural landscape in which to do it.