Tuesday, July 16, 2019

The Electric Prunes : Too Much To Dream Original Group Recordings Reprise 1966-1967 (2007)

The Electric Prunes are an American psychedelic rock band, formed in Los Angeles, California, in 1965.
The band was signed to Reprise Records in 1966 and released their first single, "Ain't It Hard", in the latter part of the year. Their first album, The Electric Prunes, included the band's two nationally charting songs, "I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night)" and "Get Me to the World on Time".

With the appearance of their second album, Underground, the band was more free to create their own material. However, the original group disbanded by 1968 when they proved unable to record the innovative and complex arrangements by David Axelrod on the albums Mass in F Minor and Release of an Oath.

Both albums were released under the band's name, the rights to which were owned by their record producer David Hassinger, but were largely performed by other musicians. Several of the original band members reconvened in 1999 and began recording again. The band still performs occasionally, although the only remaining original member is lead singer James Lowe.

[For a band that scored two major hit singles in their first year as recording artists, the Electric Prunes were given precious little respect by their record label, Reprise Records; the group was allowed to perform a mere two original tunes on their debut album I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night), and when their second, Underground, didn't sell, they became glorified session men under composer and arranger David Axelrod on Mass in F Minor.
When the Prunes couldn't play Axelrod's charts to his satisfaction, they were replaced by session men, and the original bandmembers weren't even invited to participate on two "Electric Prunes" albums later released by Reprise, Release of an Oath and Just Good Old Rock and Roll.

Despite it all, the Electric Prunes' best work is still the stuff of legend among garage rock enthusiasts, and with good reason -- the freaked-out, fuzz-enhanced guitar lineup of Ken Williams, Jim Lowe and Weasel Spagnola created a wild and distinctive sound most of their peers would envy, and they fused the energy of the garage generation and the sonic experimentation of the burgeoning psychedelic scene with a skill few have matched before or since.

Reprise finally gives the genuine Electric Prunes the tribute they deserve with Too Much to Dream -- Original Group Recordings: Reprise 1966-1967, a two-disc set that features the albums I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night) and Underground in their entirety, as well as handful of non-LP singles, unreleased tracks and monophonic mixes.

Disc one, featuring the debut album, is more enjoyable, featuring the group's biggest hits and most memorable tunes, but Underground suggests the real tragedy that the Prunes were not allowed to follow their own muse in the studio again -- the group sounds tighter, more creatively unified and more mature on Underground, and it's not hard to imagine they could have had several more fine albums in them if they'd had the chance to chart their own path.

As it is, this set collects some superb and atypical '60s garage stuff, the bonus material is solid and intriguing if not always revelatory, Jim Lowe and Mark Tulin tell the band's story in the thick liner booklet, and the Prunes' famous radio ad for Vox wah-wah pedals even makes the cut.

This is a first-rate anthology from a wildly underrated band, and folks with a jones for mid-'60s rock will want to find room for this in their collections.

AllMusic Review by Mark Deming] 

The Electric Prunes – Too Much To Dream Original Group Recordings: Reprise 1966-1967
Label: Rhino Records (2) – 8122-74882-2, Reprise Records ?– 8122-74882-2
Format: 2 CD, Compilation
Country: UK & Europe
Released: 2007
Genre: Rock
Style: Psychedelic Rock, Garage Rock.

CD 1.

01. I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
02. Bangles
Written-By – J. Walsh
03. Onie
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
04. Are You Lovin' Me More (But Enjoying It Less)
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
05. Train For Tomorrow
Written-By – Spagnola, Williams, Tulin, Preston Ritter, Lowe
06. Sold To The Highest Bidder
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
07. Get Me To The World On Time
Written-By – Tucker, Jones
08. About A Quarter To Nine
Written-By – Dubin, Warren
09. The King Is In The Counting House
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
10. Luvin'
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
11. Try Me On For Size
Written-By – Annette Tucker, Jill Jones (2)
12. Tunerville Trolley
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
13. Ain't It Hard
Written-By – Tillison, Tillison
14. Little Olive
Written-By – Lowe
15. World Of Darkness
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
16. I've Got A Way Of My Own (Outtake)
Written-By – Ransford
17. Luvin' (Mono Single Version)
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
18. I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
19. Are You Lovin' Me More (But Enjoying It Less) (Mono)
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
20. Get Me To The World On Time (Mono)
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
21. Vox Wah Wah Pedal Radio Spot (Hidden Track)

CD 2.
01. The Great Banana Hoax
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
02. Children Of Rain
Written-By – Williams, Williams
03. Wind-Up Toy
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
04. Antique Doll
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
05. It's Not Fair
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
06. I Happen To Love You
Written-By – Goffi/King
07. Dr. Do-Good
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
08. I
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
09. Hideaway
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
10. Big City
Written-By – T. Walsh, Walsh
11. Captain Glory
Written-By – Lowe
12. Long Day's Flight
Written-By – Yorty, Michael "Quint" Weakley
13. Everybody Knows (You're Not In Love)
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
14. You Never Had It Better
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
15. Shadows
Written-By – Gordo, Phillips
16. Dr. Do-Good
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
17. Hideaway
Written-By – Tucker, Mantz
18. Wind-Up Toy
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
19. The Great Banana Hoax (Alternate Version)
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe
20. Long Days Flight
Written-By – Tulin, Lowe


CD1: Tracks 1-12 released on Reprise album "I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night" RS 6248 (mono/stereo), April 1967.

CD2: Tracks 1-12 released on Reprise album "Underground" RS6262 (mono/stereo), August 1967.

CD1. Take it HERE

CD2. Take it HERE

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Rain Parade : Emergency Third Rail Power Trip 1983 - Explosions in the Glass Palace 1984 (EP)

Originally called the Sidewalks, the band was founded in Minnesota by college roommates Matt Piucci (guitar, vocals) and David Roback (guitar, vocals) in 1981, while they were attending Carleton College. David's brother Steven Roback (bass, vocals) joined the band shortly thereafter. David and Steven had been in a band called The Unconscious with neighbor Susanna Hoffs (who went on to lead The Bangles, the most famous of the Paisley Underground bands). The band soon added Will Glenn (keyboards and violin) and later Eddie Kalwa (drums). They self-released their debut single, "What She's Done to Your Mind" on their Llama label in 1982.

In 1983, they released their debut album, Emergency Third Rail Power Trip, on the Enigma/Zippo label. Critic Jim DeRogatis would later write in his book Turn on Your Mind: Four Decades of Great Psychedelic Rock (2003) that "Emergency Third Rail Power Trip is not only the best album from any of the Paisley Underground bands, it ranks with the best psychedelic rock efforts from any era", with uplifting melodies offset by themes that were "dark and introspective." According to DeRogatis, the album showcased "the Robacks' ethereal vocals, Eddie Kalwa's precise drumming, Will Glenn's colorful sitar, violin, and keyboard accents, and an intricate, chiming, but droney two-guitar attack that picks up where the Byrds left off with 'Eight Miles High.'"

Rain Parade fashioned traditional, gentle psychedelic pop on Emergency Third Rail Power Trip, including the dreamy "What's She Done to Your Mind" and the Byrds-ish "This Can't Be Today" (with the Dream Syndicate's Kendra Smith). They were clearly way ahead of their time, and it would take years before sleepy music (a la founding Rain Parade member David Roback's Mazzy Star) would catch on. This record sounds no more made in the '80s than in the '60s or '90s.

\After David Roback left to form a new band, Opal, the rest of the band continued to record as a four-piece, releasing the mini-LP Explosions in the Glass Palace in 1984. NME would later write, in praise of Explosions in the Glass Palace: "Sound cathedrals? We got ‘em ... mind-meltingly beautiful guitar sounds, employed sparingly and dynamically amid dark, dizzy tales of murder, madness and drug paranoia." The song "No Easy Way Down" was cited as a "mantra for an altered state of mind, and testament to a band who, however fleetingly, made music that sounded like the best drugs ever."

 Emergency Third Rail Power Trip 1983
 Explosions in the Glass Palace 1984


01. Talking in My Sleep   03:49         
02. This Can't Be Today (feat: Kendra Smith)   04:36         
03. I Look Around   03:07         
04. 1 Hour 1/2 Ago   04:14         
05. Carolyn's Song   04:05         
06. What's She Done to Your Mind   02:56         
07. Look at Merri   06:34        
08. Saturday's Asylum   03:45         
09. Kaleidoscope   05:35    
10. Look Both Ways   03:10
11. You Are My Friend   03:04    
12. Prisoners   03:49    
13. Blue  02:51    
14. Broken Horse   03:40    
15. No Easy Way Down   06:50 

 "No Easy Way Out"  LYRICS

They call
And told me this again
But all I know is inside out
I can't believe it

A room
Holds a thousand ghosts
Each bridge burned before the words
Are even spoken

No easy way down (down)
No easy way down (down)

No easy way down
 No easy way down

You give
And you take then you give
'Till the day you know it's timeTo stop the counting



Tuesday, July 02, 2019

Wim Mertens : Struggle For Pleasure (Reissue) 2003

This Belgian composer is not well-known among U.S. audiences, although he has made several highly regarded appearances at the New Music America festivals. In Spain, however, where he was the subject of a major television special, he is a new-music celebrity.
Mertens' style employs mesmerizing minimalist techniques with a sense of the romantic that appeals to both serious music aficionados and more mainstream listeners. The keyboardist uses a certain amount of electronics along with some acoustic instruments like violin, flute, and saxophone.

"Struggle for Pleasure" is a musical piece released in 1983. It is the theme music used by the Belgian phone operator Proximus. It was featured in the Peter Greenaway movie The Belly of an Architect. Energy 52's track "Cafe Del Mar" features a main melody based on "Struggle for Pleasure". It was also covered by Belgian dance music group Minimalistix in 2000 and reached dance charts across Europe.

The fourth release by Belgian post-minimalist composer Wim Mertens, 1983's Struggle for Pleasure, is a brief EP's worth of, as the composer puts it, "petite musique de chambre." It sounds a bit stuffy, but it's indicative of Mertens' talent that one of these six tracks, the hauntingly beautiful piano instrumental "Close Cover," actually became a hit on the continent when it was released as a single. Although "Close Cover" is the clear highlight of Struggle for Pleasure, the other five tracks are beautifully arranged pieces of modern chamber music.

Although Mertens is clearly heavily influenced by American minimalist composers -- the title track and "Gentleman of Leisure" are unalloyed Philip Glass homages -- he brings his own brilliant compositional sense and a genuine gift for unexpected arrangements to these pieces. The opening "Tourtour," for soprano saxophone and harp, brings entirely unexpected textures out of both instruments, and "Salernes" keeps from sounding too much like early Terry Riley through the unexpected start-stop motif that reappears throughout the piece. Mertens, who began composing and recording at the age of 28, has the melodic sensibility of someone who grew up not only with the modern classical tradition, but with jazz and pop as well.

Indeed, Mertens' piano style on "Close Cover" recalls the fragmented impressionism of Bill Evans. As a result, his music is accessible to more listeners than just the die-hard 20th century classical crowd, making the album title considerably less descriptive than it might otherwise be. Like all of Mertens' early releases, Struggle for Pleasure was originally released under the group name Soft Verdict and reissued under Mertens' own name in the late '80s.

Label: Les Disques Du Crepuscule ?– TWI 1189, Les Disques Du Crepuscule ?– 085.1189.029
Format: CD, EP, Reissue
Country: Belgium
Released: 2003
Genre: Electronic
Style: Modern Classical, Minimal


01. Tourtour
    Harp – Anne Van Den Troost Soprano Saxophone – Luk Schollaert  2:30
02. Struggle For Pleasure
    Piano – Hans Francois, Wim Mertens Soprano Saxophone –Luk Schollaert
    Synthesizer [Bass] – Pieter Vereertbrugghen  3:53
03. Salernes
    Clarinet – Dirk Descheemaeker Electric Piano – Hans Francois, Wim Mertens Harp – Anne     Van   Den Troost Piccolo Flute – Marc GrauwelsSoprano Saxophone – Luk        Schollaert  2:59
 04. Close Cover 
   Luk Schollaert Synthesizer [Bass] – Pieter Vereertbrugghen Voice, Piano,  Synthesizer – Wim     Mertens  3:15
05. Bresque
    Effects – Marc Francois Harp – Anne Van Den Troost Soprano Saxophone – Luk  Schollaert  2:33
06. Gentleman Of Leisure
    Clarinet – John Ruocco Electric Piano – Wim Mertens Piano – Hans Francois  Piccolo Flute –      Marilyn Maingart  4:34

Take It FLAC HERE : Size: 94,7 MB

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

The Gun Club : Miami 1982

For some unfathomable reason one of the greatest bands to come out of the U.S.A. in the last years has never seemed to receive the respect it is due. Coming straight out of the L.A. punk scene in 1980, The Gun Club were one of the first to take a really punk attitude to roots music. True, they had been predated by several bands like The Blasters, NRBQ, etc. but these were really way too respectful of the material they were recreating. The Gun Club, according at least to bandleader Jeffrey Lee Pierce's autobiography Go Tell The Mountain, set out on a mission to destroy.

Miami is the second studio album by punk blues group The Gun Club, released in 1982. It was released on Blondie guitarist Chris Stein's label, Animal RecordsStein also produced the album.

 According to Terry Graham, Miami was recorded in a "tiny room in a second rate studio somewhere in New York and sports the famous "muffled" sound so favored by tiny rooms in second rate studios". This probably added greatly to the atmosphere here; that combined with Ward's slide guitar seem to underpin the sounds here. To sum up the contradictions of this record, the band captures the claustrophobia of wide-open spaces in a cramped studio in New York.

Producer Chris Stein is said to dislike heavy guitar based rock, which adds to the confusion in the production. He winds up with a ghostly presence in the sound pretty different to the way the band would come across live. It winds up sounding like the country LP the Doors never cut.

Pierce's vocals were getting stronger and he is still using the blues moan he picked up from Tommy Johnson. He would later recommend that I listen to Howlin' Wolf, an artist who was renowned for his trademark howl. Pierce's lyricism was becoming progressively mystical on tracks like "Like Calling up Thunder" and "Brother And Sister" but a rock and roll pulse still underlies everything. He approaches dirty realism on "Texas Serenade," a depiction of a suburban killing. The best track on the album is probably "Mother of Earth," a song where the narrating character is a drifter tired of 'eating and leaving but can't go back no more.'

One little known fact about this track is that Billy Idol, who was hanging around with Pierce a lot in L.A. at the time, said that "White Wedding" was an attempt to copy it. Don't let that put you off, this is beautiful. Mark Tomco of Rubber Rodeo adds pedal steel guitar to both this and "Texas Serenade" adding a further psychedelic swirl.

Miami was originally due to be called "Triggernometry," after a book on Old West gunfighters. To quote Graham again, the new title Miami " was chosen because JLP liked places like Miami, Las Vegas, New Orleans.... places where the seamy underbelly is more readily on display. Candy stores for terminally inquisitive miscreants and carnival trash. Such places were/are fair reflections of the activity inside Pierce's's head. A psychic requirement for all Gun Club temp workers." 

Debbie Harry appears as a backing singer on various tracks on the album under the pseudonym "D.H. Laurence Jr." The album front cover photograph doesn't include Rob Ritter who had already left the band. Before leaving the band, Ritter first taught all his bass-lines to his ex-Bags bandmate Patricia Morrison.

The track "Mother of Earth" was covered by alt-country band The Sadies on their 2001 album Tremendous Efforts. It was also covered by Swedish band bob hund, but with lyrics in Swedish, as “Mamma din jord” on their 2019 album “0-100”.

In 1996, aged 37, Pierce died from a brain hemorrhage at the University of Utah Hospital.

The Gun Club

    Jeffrey Lee Pierce : vocals, guitar, piano, background vocals on "Watermelon     Man", lead guitar on "Run Through the Jungle", "John Hardy" and "Mother of       Earth"
    Ward Dotson : lead guitar, background vocals on "Watermelon Man"
    Rob Ritter : bass
    Terry Graham : drums

Additional musicians

    D.H. Laurence, Jr.(Debbie Harry)
: backing vocals
    Walter Steding : fiddle on "Watermelon Man"
    Chris Stein : producer, bongos on "Watermelon Man"
    Mark Tomeo : steel guitar on "Texas Serenade" and "Mother of Earth"


01. Carry Home : 3:14
02. Like Calling Up Thunder : 2:29
03. Brother and Sister : 2:57
04. Run Through the Jungle (John Fogerty) : 4:07
05. A Devil in the Woods : 3:05
06. Texas Serenade : 4:40
07. Watermelon Man (Ward Dotson, Jeffrey Lee Pierce) : 4:11
08. Bad Indian : 2:37
09. John Hardy (Traditional; arranged by Jeffrey Lee Pierce) : 3:21
10. Fire of Love (Jody Reynolds, Stordivant Sonya) : 2:14
11. Sleeping in Blood City : 3:29
12. Mother of Earth : 3:21

Take It Here MP3 @ 320 Size : 91 MB
Take It Here  Flac : Size :   285 MB

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Poll : Άνθρωπε 1971 - Poll 1972

Poll was a Greek pop group founded in 1971 by Kostas Tournas, Robert Williams, Stavros Logarides and Kostas Papaioannou. In Greece, it is considered a historic group of the 1970s with pioneering lyrics. Poll is a legendary pop group which resonated with the Greek youth of the '70s, and its songs are viewed as "some of the best songs, which have remained in the history of Greek music". Poll is the most commercially successful Greek band of all time.

Οι Poll ήταν μια ελληνική Rock μπάντα που ιδρύθηκε το 1971 από τον Κώστα Τουρνά , τον Ρόμπερτ Ουίλιαμς, τον Σταύρο Λογαρίδη και τον Κώστα Παπαϊωάννου. Στην αρχή έπαιζε σιτάρ ο Σπύρος Μαυρογιάννης. Στην Ελλάδα, θεωρείται μια ιστορική μπάντα της δεκαετίας του '70 με πρωτοποριακούς στίχους, που ταυτιζόταν με την ελληνική νεολαία και τα τραγούδια τους θεωρούνται μερικά από τα καλύτερα τραγούδια που έχουν παραμείνει στην ιστορία της ελληνικής μουσικής .


Κώστας Τουρνάς
Robert Williams
Σταύρος Λογαρίδης
Κώστας Παπαϊωάννου
Νάσια Σάντι
Δέσποινα Γλέζου

Το όνομα Poll το πήραν ανοίγοντας ένα Αγγλικό λεξικό.
Ο Κώστας Τουρνάς έγραψε το Άνθρωπε Αγάπα μετά την παρακολούθηση της ταινίας "Φράουλες και αίμα".Ηχογραφήθηκε σαν demo από τον Κώστα και δυο Σκωτσέζους φίλους του, τον Τζο [κιθάρα] και την Μαρία [φωνή], αυτή τραγουδούσε στο κομμάτι, και με την βοήθεια του Μάκη Παπαθεοδώρου [πρώην "First"] στο φλάουτο, και παραδόθηκε στην "Φώνογκραμ" αποσπώντας θετική απάντηση.

Ευχαριστημένοι από την θετική απάντηση της εταιρίας, ο Κώστας Τουρνάς μαζί με τον Ρόμπερτ Ουίλιαμς παίζοντας στο σπίτι του πρώτου μια μελωδία από δω, λίγα ακόρντα από κει βγήκε ένα κομμάτι, πάνω σ'αυτό έγραψε ο Κώστας Τουρνάς τους στίχους του "Ήλιε μου" , που ήταν και το δεύτερο τραγούδι των Poll.
Με την βοήθεια του φίλου τους Χαραλαμπίδη και βοήθεια στα φωνητικά από τις φίλες τους Μαίρη Μοσέ και Νάσια ξαναγράφουν το "ήλιε μου" και το "άνθρωπε" σε νέα εκτέλεση.

Ο Κώστας Τουρνάς και ο Ρόμπερτ Ουίλιαμς ήταν φίλοι παιδικής ηλικίας που ξεκίνησαν τη μουσική τους συνεργασία το 1964, όταν συγκρότησαν το γκρουπ των Teenagers και ηχογράφησαν το πρώτο τους τραγούδι "You do not love me".
Το 1967, άλλαξαν το όνομα της μπάντας στο "Dinos and the X-Rays" αλλά διέλυσαν σύντομα διότι ο Τουρνάς έπρεπε να πάει στο στρατό και ο Ουίλιαμς πήγε στη Ρόδεσία όπου έμεινε για δύο χρόνια. 

Συνενώθηκαν τελικά και, μαζί με τον Σταύρο Λογαρίδη, σχημάτισαν  τους "Poll", αφού πρώτα εξέτασαν τα ονόματα "Paul" (μετά τον Paul McCartney ) και "Omega Limited".  Οι Poll, μαζί με τους Νοστράδαμος , ήταν μία από τις πρώτες Rock μπάντες της Ελλάδας.
Η πρώτη σύνθεση των Poll ήταν :
Σπύρος Μαυρογιάννης, Σταύρος Λογαρίδης, Ρόμπερτ Ουίλιαμς, Κώστας Τουρνάς, Μαίρη Μωσέ, Νάσια Σανδή.

Το λογότυπό τους ήταν το περίγραμμα ενός περιστεριού. Η πρώτη συναυλία τους έγινε στο Πεδίον του Άρεως στην Αθήνα. Οι Poll άρχισαν επίσης να εμφανίζονται στο ¨Κύτταρο", παρουσιάζοντας τραγούδια που επηρεάστηκαν από την κουλτούρα των hippies. Εμφανίστηκαν επίσης στο "Ελατήριο" παρουσιάζοντας μουσική επηρεασμένη από τους Crosby, Stills, Nash And Young ενώ προστέθηκαν δύο νέα μέλη, η τραγουδίστρια Nasia Sandi και ο drummer Κώστας Παπαϊωάννου. Στο "Ελατήριο" , προστέθηκε επίσης η τραγουδίστρια Δέσποινα Γλέζου, η οποία αργότερα έφυγε για να επιδιώξει έναν πιο εξατομικευμένο ρόλο.

Οι Poll άρχισαν τις πρόβες σε ένα σπίτι που ανήκε στη γιαγιά του Κώστα Χαραλαμπίδη, πωλητή της ελληνικής δισκογραφικής εταιρείας Elladisk, θυγατρικής της ολλανδικής πολυεθνικής Philips . Ο Χαραλαμπίδης παρείχε ένα demo της μπάντας στον Χρήστο Φασόλα, ο οποίος δούλευε στην Ελλάδα στο χώρο του νόμου περί πνευματικών δικαιωμάτων.

Τον Απρίλιο του 1971 κυκλοφόρησαν το πρώτο τους single που έγινε τεράστια επιτυχία. Στην Α πλευρά ήταν το τραγούδι «Άνθρωπε Αγάπα» και στην πλευρά Β ήταν το «Έλα Ήλιε μου» στην Polydor. Μετά από πρόταση του Φασόλα, ο Σταύρος Λογαρίδης έλαβε μέρος στην ηχογράφηση του τραγουδιού και έγινε μέλος της μπάντας.

Τον Σεπτέμβριο του 1971, κυκλοφόρησε το πρώτο τους άλμπουμ "Άνθρωπε", το οποίο  ήταν συσκευασμένο σε ένα ταγάρι.

Το "Άνθρωπε Αγάπα", θεωρείται το πρώτο αντιπολεμικό τραγούδι διαμαρτυρίας στην ιστορία του ελληνικού ροκ και κυκλοφόρησε κατά τη διάρκεια των χρόνων της χούντας στην Ελλάδα. Το τραγούδι ήταν εμπνευσμένο από το hippie σύνθημα "Κάνε έρωτα όχι πόλεμο". 

Την άνοιξη του 1972 η μπάντα ηχογράφησε ένα single με τα τραγούδια "Αετοί"  και "Η Γενιά μας" τα οποία έγιναν τεράστιες επιτυχίες. Αργότερα το 1972 εμφανίστηκαν στο Φεστιβάλ Τραγουδιού Θεσσαλονίκης όπου έπαιξαν το "Μολυβιές φωτογραφίες", το οποίο επίσης κυκλοφόρησε ως single με το "Οσες Φορές" στην άλλη πλευρά.

Το 1972 κυκλοφόρησε το δεύτερο άλμπουμ τους, απλά με τίτλο Poll , αλλά με το παρατσούκλι "Λευκό", λόγω του λευκού του εξώφυλλου,επηρεασμένο από το Λευκό Άλμπουμ του Beatles. Το Λευκό άλμπουμ ήταν το τελευταίο άλμπουμ του συγκροτήματος και περιελάμβανε τραγούδια όπως το "Ελένη", το "Πες της μαϊμού να μην πειράζει", το "Ξημερώνει" και άλλα. Περιελάμβανε επίσης κι ένα κόμικ που έδειχνε την ιστορία της μπάντας.

Μέχρι τον Δεκέμβριο του 1972, κοντά στην εποχή που οι Poll διαλύθηκαν, ο Ουίλιαμς έγινε ο κύριος συνθέτης της μπάντας, αντικαθιστώντας τον Τουρνά, ο οποίος μέχρι τότε είχε συνθέσει τα περισσότερα τραγούδια της μπάντας. Η τελευταία τους παράσταση ήταν τον Ιανουάριο του 1973, όταν εμφανίστηκαν στην Πρωτοχρονιάτικη παράσταση του Νίκου Μαστοράκη στην ΥΕΝΕΔ.

Διαλύθηκαν σύντομα μετά το δεύτερο άλμπουμ τους, επειδή ο Τουρνάς ήθελε να ακολουθήσει μια σόλο καριέρα. Όταν ρωτήθηκε για τους λόγους της απόφασής του, ο Τουρνάς σχολίασε ότι ίσως η απόφαση για τη διάλυση οφείλεται στην ανάγκη ενός ατόμου να δημιουργήσει δουλειά που δεν μπορεί να καλυφθεί από την μπάντα και θα έπρεπε τότε να «θάψει» τη δημιουργική του ανάγκη για συναισθηματικούς λόγους. Ο Τουρνάς περιέγραψε επίσης τη διάλυση του συγκροτήματος ως "μεγάλη απώλεια".

Στις 24 Σεπτεμβρίου 1982 το συγκρότημα επανενώθηκε για μια συναυλία στο Λυκαβηττό που ηχογραφήθηκε και κυκλοφόρησε ως άλμπουμ. Μετά την επανένωση του 1982, κυκλοφόρησαν και πάλι τα πρώτα δύο άλμπουμ τους, λόγω της μεγάλης ζήτησης και έκανε τις παλαιότερες εκδόσεις των άλμπουμ να γίνουν αντικείμενα συλλογής. Τον Σεπτέμβριο του 1991 η μπάντα έδωσε πάλι συναυλία στην ίδια θέση στο Λυκαβηττό, η οποία οδήγησε σε φήμες μόνιμης επανένωσης, αν και αυτό δεν έγινε ποτέ.

Σε αντίθεση με παρόμοιες Rock μπάντες της εποχής, οι Poll δεν περιορίστηκαν αποκλειστικά σε ερωτικά θέματα στα τραγούδια τους. Το hit τους "Άνθρωπε Αγάπα" ήταν ένα αντιπολεμικό τραγούδι και πολλά από τα άλλα τραγούδια τους άγγιζαν διάφορα κοινωνικοπολιτικά ζητήματα των νέων της εποχής, όπως τα μακριά μαλλιά, τα οποία είδαν με καχυποψία η χούντα και η παλαιότερη γενιά εκείνη την εποχή . Τα τραγούδια τους για την αγάπη ήταν διαφορετικά και περιείχαν πρωτοποριακούς στίχους που εναλλάσσονταν μέ υπέροχες μελωδίες.


  Poll Means Love (Στίχοι: Robert Williams - Μουσική: Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)
02.  Φόβοι Μου (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
03.  Ψάχνω Να Βρω Τον Φίλο Μου (Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)
04.  Στην Πηγή Μια Κοπέλλα (Κώστας Τουρνάς
05.  2.000 Λόγοι (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
06.  Παρασκευάς Και Θωμάς (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
07.  Και Μιλώντας Για Ανθρώπους (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
08.  Ο Γέρος (Στίχοι: Robert Williams – Μουσική : Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)
09.  Χρώματα (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
10.  Piccadilly Circus (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
11.  Γιατί Έχει Μακριά Μαλλιά (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
12.  Σήμερα Κι' Αύριο (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
13α.  Πέστε Μου Τί Θέλω (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
13β.  Poll Σημαίνει Αγάπη (Στίχοι: Robert Williams - Μουσική: Κώστας Τουρνάς)
13γ.  Ποιός Θα Δείξει (Πέστε Μου Τί Θέλω) (Κώστας Τουρνάς)

    Bonus Tracks

14.  Η Γενιά Μας (Κώστας Τουρνάς)
15.  Έλα Ήλιε Μου  (Στίχοι: Robert Williams - Μουσική: Κώστας Τουρνάς)
16.  Άνθρωπε Αγάπα (Κώστας Τουρνάς)

Take it Flac HERE
 Poll 1972
01.  Ρυθμός (Ορχηστρικό)    
02.  Ξημερώνει     (Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)
03.  Δε Θα ΄Σαι Μάρτυς (Robert Williams)   
04.  Πες΄ Της Μαϊμούς Να Μη Με Πειράζει Με Το Δάχτυλο Της (Κώστας Τουρνάς)   
05.  Ελένη (Robert Williams)   
06.  Όσες Φορές (Κώστας Τουρνάς)   
07.  Μια Μέρα Βροχερή     (Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)
08.  Μάνα  (Κώστας Τουρνάς)    
09.  Σαν Πέρναγε Ο Χειμώνας  (Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)   
10.  Ποιος Μπορεί Να Πιστέψει  (Robert Williams)   
11.  Poll Means Love  (Σταύρος Λογαρίδης)
    Bonus Tracks

12.  Μολυβιές Φωτογραφίες   
13.  Αετοί

Take it Flac HERE  

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Various Artists - Pebbles, Vol. 4 : Various Hodads - Surf n Tunes, Original Rare '60s Surf/Rod Classics 1992

Various Artists - Pebbles, Vol. 4
Subtitled: Various Hodads - Surf n Tunes, Original Rare '60s Surf/Rod Classics
1992 Archive International Productions (AIP)
CD cat. #: AIP CD 5021

Pebbles, Volume 4 is a compilation album in the Pebbles series that has been issued in both LP and CD formats. Unlike other volumes in the series – which compile obscure garage rock and psychedelic rock music – Volume 4 collects rare examples of surf rock. The LP is subtitled Summer Means Fun, while the CD is subtitled Surf N Tunes. Another Pebbles, Volume 4 was issued on CD a few years earlier by ESD Records and has completely different tracks.

Release data

This album was released on BFD Records in 1979. AIP Records kept the LP in print for many years.
AIP Records issued this volume in CD format in 1992.
Although having a different cover, the two formats are largely the same album and even have similar catalogue numbers.
Although two box sets that purport to be the first five volumes of the Pebbles series have been released – the Pebbles Box on LP (in 1987) and the Trash Box on CD (in 2004) – none of the tracks on Pebbles, Volume 4 are included on either box set.

Omitted Tracks on the CD

When AIP Records issued the early volumes of CDs, they omitted some tracks from the corresponding LP for the stated reason that they were already widely available on other anthologies. In this case, only about half of the tracks on the LP were included on the CD; even the opening cut on the LP from which the subtitle is taken – "Summer Means Fun" by Bruce & Terry – was left off. The numerous bonus tracks on the CD include the corresponding "School is a Drag" by Superstocks to go with the curious pro-school song by The Wheel Men.

 Notes on the tracks

As on the first two volumes, an odd track from a well-known artist – Jan & Dean in this instance, performing on a commercial for Coca-Cola – is included on the album. Lloyd Thaxton had a widely syndicated pop music television program in the 1960s, The Lloyd Thaxton Show. Dave Edmunds – the only artist represented who is not American – had numerous hit songs in the late 1970s and early 1980s, including 1970's international success, "I Hear You Knocking." The Trashmen are renowned for their 1963 hit "Surfin' Bird" and are a prolific enough band that a 4-CD box set was released several years ago on Sundazed.


01. California Suns : Masked Grandma - 02:28
02. The Dantes : Top Down Time - 02:05
03. The Pyramids : Custom Caravan - 01:58
04. The Rivieras : California Sun '65 - 02:36
05. The Knights : Hot Rod High - 02:06
06. The Wheel Men : School Is A Gas - 02:19
07. The Superstocks : School Is A Drag - 02:14
08. Lloyd Thaxton : Image Of A Surfer - 02:02
09. The City Surfers : Beach Ball - 01:56
10. Dave Edmunds : London's A Lonely Town - 02:28
11. The Ragamuffins : The Fun We Had - 02:08
12. The Rally Packs : Move Out Little Mustang - 01:53
13. The Reveres : Big ''T'' - 02:20
14. The Readymen : Shortnin' Bread - 02:46
15. The Bleach Boys : Wine, Wine, Wine - 02:29
16. The Esquires : Flashin' Red - 02:20
17. The Del-Vettes : Ram Charger - 02:29
18. The Gamblers : LSD-25 - 02:17
19. Brian Lord : The Big Surfer - 02:32

Playing time...43:25

[This cd is atypical, as far as the first five in this series goes. I'd heard of compilations like "Nuggets" first, I think, and after discovering that recentlyish, I'd stumble upon similar "Pebbles"and then "Back from the grave". From my point of view, the first Nuggets box set is the best of these. It has the best sound quality and the best songs. Some of those songs on Nuggets became instant classics for me (I've reviewed that title here). Once you start getting to Pebbles and Nuggets though, the sound quality deteriorated markedly. They can have a very scratchy/cassettey kind of sound. As for the Pebbles cds I bought, it was with a company which gave 'freebie' cds if you bought five from surprise cd was the first volume of English Freakbeat, I think it was called. That had a few good nuggets on it too. Anyway, with Pebbles, I was often surprised at how often the same songs which appeared on the first Nuggets box-set would appear on four of the five Pebbles cds I ordered. Not sure, but maybe some of that 'identical' material may have been versions of the same song by a  different band...but if similarity in songs is an issue for you, I'd choose Nuggets over Pebbles.

Anyway, back to Pebbles might actually have superior sound quality to the rest that I've heard. It's been a while since I've listened to this cd and my notes aren't as specific as they usually are. Maybe I'd give this album 4/5...but I'm not certain...just my impression that this album is the best of the first five, so long as you like Beach Boy type songs about surfing and hot-rod cars.

The best song:


Dave Edmunds - "London's a lonely town". A lovely, retro/neo surf song by the  Brit who had the classic "Girls talk". Great melody and harmonies. Has a Christmas vibe to it. Tried finding a You Tube of this song but could only find "New York's a lonely town".  Prefer the Pebbles version. Difference may be due to legal issues or something.



Readymen -  "Shortnin' Bread". Has an amusing vibe, as far as the vocals go. Candidate for my list of the best US songs of all time...might find a place for it on the tail end of my list. 

The Ragamuffins - "The Fun We Had". Vocal style similar to that in Wheatus' recentish cool pop song "Teenage dirtbag".

Of interest:

Brian Lord - "The Big Surfer". Amusing song. Got a John F.Kennedy conceit going for it. Has an ending with a political twist too, which was very surprising to me. 
California Suns - "Masked Grandma". References the song "The little old lady from Pasadena". Sounds like it also uses one of those comb know, where you put that cheap and nasty toilet paper onto a comb and blow on it? Hope that last sentence is clear...hmm. 
The Wheel Men - "School Is a Gas” AND Superstocks - "School is a Drag". Same song but with different takes...looks like they are trying to appeal to different demographs! Also lumped in The Knights' "Hot Rod High" with "School is a drag" but the connection is obscure to me now after this time interval.]

Pebbles on the beach!

As its title implies, the fourth Pebbles disc is a bit of a departure from other volumes in the series. It serves up 19 tracks of ultra obscure surf rock from the 60s (except for Dave Edmunds' "London's A Lonely Town," which was recorded in 1973). The songs are mostly from the poppier end of the spectrum, with vocal harmonies, symplistic lyrics, and peppy instrumentation that shows a clear Beach Boys/Jan & Dean influence.

Severeal of these songs are really good- The Dantes' "Top Down Time" is an infectious rush, and the Knights' "Hot Rod High" offers the kind of simplistic joy that its title promises. The Wheel Men and The Super Stocks provide two excellent versions of the same song (with slighty different titles, however. The former group calls their tune "School Is A Gas," while the latter provides "School Is A Drag"). Lloyd Thaxton's "Image Of A Surfer" can almost be described as the surf-pop counterpart to Kim Fowley's "The Trip." The Bleach Boys (bLeach, not beach) turn in a wicked cool version of "Wine Wine Wine."

There are also a few less poppy gems: The Readymen's unbelievably awesome "Shortnin' Bread" is a beer-blasted slab of midwestern surf-punk insanity a la the Trashmen, and the Gamblers' "LSD 25" is a way-cool instrumentl strutter. Brian Lord's "The Big Surfer" is a totally inexplicable song which featuyres- okay, I don't want tio give it away, but it rules. Sadly, there are a few subpar tunes that keep this from being a five-star buy: "Custom Caravan" and "Big 'T'" are ultra-generic tunes that really aren't all that fun or interesting, and a few other tunes on this disc are similarly unenjoyable. But meh, who cares? The best music here is Pebble-riffic summertime greatness.

The Pebbles CD series, released by AIP Records in the years 1992-2007