In The Land Of FREE we still Keep on Rockin'

I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now

Plain and Fancy

Music gives soul to universe, wings to mind, flight to imagination, charm to sadness, and life to everything.


Saturday, April 10, 2021

NRBQ - All Hopped Up (1977 us, outstanding jazzy roots 'n' roll bar rock, 2018 remaster and expanded)

The music on All Hopped Up covered a period of a few years, 1974-1976. The LP was released in the Spring of 1977 by Red Rooster Records. NRBQ has released several fine albums but this has to rank as one of their very best – a minor masterpiece. Released during the height of the new wave/punk era, it sounds like nothing else from the time.

In fact, none of these 13 songs sound alike. NRBQ cover an enormous amount of ground on this release, from rockabilly, country, folk rock, power pop, jazz, and more. Even more amazing that they make it work as well as they do. It’s pointless to list highlights as the album is strong all the way through but a few special tracks need to be singled out. Al Anderson’s Ridin’ In My Car is a timeless pop classic. It Feels Good and That’s Alright are excellent power pop tracks on par with the best from this era. Call Him Off Rogers is a weird, offbeat country rock number with a melodic guitar solo. Things to You, a Terry Adam’s original that would later resurface on NRBQ’s country outing with Skeeter Davis (a great record), is another outstanding track.

NRBQ never took themselves too serious and for this reason they are never ranked among the important bands of the classic rock era. But when one reviews their body of work and its consistency, you can definitely pose the argument for NRBQ being one of America’s great rock n roll/roots bands. 
by Jason Nardelli, May 12th, 2020

1. Ridin' In My Car (Al Anderson) - 2:55
2. It Feels Good (Terry Adams) - 2:36
3. Cecilia (Harry Ruby, Dave Dreyer) - 2:57
4. I Got A Rocket In My Pocket (Jimmy Logsdon, Vic McAlpin) - 2:40
5. Call Him Off, Rogers (Terry Adams) - 2:55
6. Doctor's Wind (Joey Spampinato) - 2:37
7. Things To You (Terry Adams) - 3:29
8. Help Me Somebody (Al Anderson) - 4:09
9. Still In School (Joey Spampinato) - 2:25
10.Honey Hush (Lou Willie Turner) - 4:30
11.Queen Talk (Terry Adams) - 2:09
12.Bonanza (Jay Livingston, Raymond Evans) - 0:43
13.That's Alright (Joey Spampinato) - 3:13
14.Chicken Hearted (Bill Justis) - 2:16
15.Do The Bump (Terry Adams) - 3:05
16.She's Got To Know (Joey Spampinato) - 2:23
17.Start It Over (Terry Adams) - 2:31
Bonus Tracks 14-17

*Joey Spampinato - Bass, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals 
*Terry Adams - Clavinet, Harmonica, Keyboards, Hammond Organ, Piano, Trumpet, Vocals
*Tom Ardolino - Drums, Vocals
*Al Anderson - Guitar, Vocals
*Keith Spring - Bells, Tenor Saxophone
*Donn Adams - Trombone, Vocals, Percussion

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

The Sorrows - Old Songs New Songs (1966-80 uk, awesome mod freakbeat bluesy psych rock, 2009 double disc remaster)

Long after Fardon split, however, some of the band grabbed a last chance (for an extended holiday, at least) and relocated to Italy in 1966 to try and cash in on an Anglophilic scene. During this footnote era, they did achieve some squealing success as a placebo live draw, and hung around for years playing Family and Traffic songs, plus numbers by the ex-pat rockers who made up a bewildering, revolving cast list (two relatively major players are remembered only as “Kit” and “Rod”). 

They recorded singles for a tiny Italian indie label and, eventually, an LP. Old Songs New Songs is rare, inevitably hailed as a legendary cult classic. This two-disc set contains a complete bonus demo album and various 45 sides, including the sole outstanding track Ypotron – feedbacking freakbeat recorded in ’66 for an Italian spy caper movie.
by Derek Hammond , 21 August 2009

The first-ever official reissue of this legendary Italian-only late sixties album! British freakbeat/garage R&B giants the Sorrows relocated to Italy in 1966, recording the album Old Songs New Songs a couple of years later for a small independent label based in Milan. Now extremely rare as an original pressing, the album has been shoddily bootlegged a couple of times, including a CD pressing that slowed down the recordings and also managed to chop off the final minute of the album's title track! 

This new, band-approved reissue features the fully restored album in sparkling sound quality and adds an extra 100 minutes of music, nearly all of which is previously unreleased. Among the highlights are the magnificent heavy psychedelia of the band's aborted early 1968 Pye single 'Which Way'/'My Way Of Thinking,' the theme song to the cult Italian spy caper Ypotron, a couple of movie collaborations with soundtrack maestro Ennio Morricone, and even an entire late 1968 demo album that, following the departure of two group members, was eventually scrapped and replaced by Old Songs New Songs!

Completed by a previously unheard live gig from 1980 that proved the Sorrows' savage garage band instincts were fully intact a decade later, this package features new, extremely detailed sleevenotes concerning their time in Italy, with fresh band quotes and some superb, previously unpublished photos. Forget what you may have read and heard elsewhere, this incredible 2CD package is the final word on the band's lengthy but previously little-documented Italian sojourn!" Includes 16-page booklet.

Disc 1
1. Same Old Room (Chuck Fryers) - 3:13
2. Hey Mr. Policeman (Charlie Whitney, Roger Chapman, Rick Grech) - 3:28
3. Heaven Is In Your Mind (Jim Capaldi, Steve Winwood) - 4:03
4. Mary J (Chuck Fryers) - 2:12
5. Hey Hey (Chuck Fryers) - 2:51
6. The Makers (Chuck Fryers) - 6:24
7. Io Amo Te Per Lei (Which Way) (Bruce Finley, Chuck Fryers) - 2:56
8. Dear Mr. Fantasy (Jim Capaldi, Steve Winwood, Chris Wood) - 5:01
9. Rollin' Over (Ronnie Lane, Steve Marriott) - 3:01
10.Per Una Donna...No! (Listen To Me) (Claudio Fontana, Tony Hazzard) - 2:47
11.6 Ft. 7½ Inch Shark Fishing Blues (Chuck Fryers) - 1:59
12.Old Songs New Songs (Charlie Whitney, Roger Chapman, Rick Grech) - 4:38
13.Per Una Donna...No! (Listen To Me) (Claudio Fontana, Tony Hazzard) - 2:40
14.Amore Limone (Each And Every Day) (Mike Hugg, Vito Pallavicini) - 2:33
15.Hey Hey (Chuck Fryers) - 2:47
16.6 Ft. 7½ Inch Shark Fishing Blues (Chuck Fryers) - 2:47
17.Which Way (Chuck Fryers) - 2:36
18.My Way Of Thinking (Chuck Fryers) - 3:00
19.Pioggia Sul Tuo Viso #1 (Carlo Nistri, Ennio Morricone, Luciano Salce) - 2:26
20.Pioggia Sul Tuo Viso #2 (Carlo Nistri, Ennio Morricone, Luciano Salce) - 2:28
21.Ypotron (Nico Fidenco) - 3:41

Disc 2
1. Hey Hey (Chuck Fryers) - 3:12
2. New York Mining Disaster 1941 (Barry Gibb, Robin Gibb) - 4:48
3. Answer My Questions (Chuck Fryers) - 2:57
4. Dear Mr. Fantasy (Jim Capaldi, Steve Winwood, Chris Wood) - 5:04
5. We Can Work It Out (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 4:19
6. The Makers (Chuck Fryers) - 6:41
7. Heaven Is In Your Mind (Jim Capaldi, Steve Winwood) - 3:35
8. Dogs And Cats (Chuck Fryers) - 3:14
9. Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood (Bennie Benjamin, Gloria Caldwell, Sol Marcus) - 5:51
10.Move Da Show (Nevada) - 3:17
11.Matchbox / Rock And Roll Music (Carl Perkins / Chuck Berry) - 5:40
12.Baby What You Want Me To Do (Jimmy Reed) - 3:04
13.Bye Bye Bird (Willie Dixon, Sony Boy Williamson) - 3:27
14.Let Me In (Miki Dallon) - 3:06
15.What'd I Say (Ray Charles) - 3:11
16.Dizzy Miss Lizzy (Larry Williams) - 3:05
17.No Reply (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 3:12
18.A Little Rock 'n' Roll (Pip Witcher, Roger Lomas) - 2:07
19.5-4-3-2-1 (Manfred Mann, Mike Hugg, Paul Jones) - 2:20
20.Take A Heart (Miki Dallon) - 3:28

The Sorrows
*Chuck Fryers - Vocals, Organ, Guitar
*Simon Catlin - Vocals
*Chris Smith - Keyboards, Vocals
*Mick Bradley - Drums
*Rod Davies - Guitar, Vocals
*Pip Witcher - Vocals, Harp, guitar 
*Wez Price - Guitar
*Philip Packham - Bass
*Bruce Finlay - Drums

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Heads Hands And Feet - Tracks...Plus (1972 uk, stunning classic rock with blues 'n' roll shades, 2009 remaster and xpanded)

Although the core personnel had been together in a variety of incarnations since the mid-'60s, most notable of which was the brilliant and criminally short-lived Poet & the One Man Band, Tracks (1972) was only the second long player from Heads Hands & Feet. The U.K. quintet of Pete Gavin (drums/vocals), Albert Lee (guitar/keyboards/vocals), Ray Smith (bass/guitar/vocals), Charles "Chas" Hodges (bass/guitar/violin/vocals), and front man Tony Colton (vocals) had gained significant notice stateside during a week-long residency at the Troubadour in Los Angeles after the release of their self-titled double-LP debut Heads Hands & Feet (1971).

For their second outing, Tracks, they continue their quest for exceptionally crafted country-flavored material. They waste precious little time, as the fiery "Let's Get This Show on the Road" is a high-energy, good-time ode to the rigors and foibles of live performing and concert touring as exemplified in the chorus "Maybe I'll see Margo/Down in Chicago/And I've got a dancer down in New Orleans." Lee's multi-tasking musicianship is particularly noteworthy as his rollicking keyboard work on both acoustic piano and Hammond organ, coupled with the catchy, if not slightly twangy lead electric guitar lines, rhythmically tie the verses to the chorus. "Roadshow" demonstrates quite a different side to the band, examining Lee's capacity for emotive singer/songwriter balladry. His temperate vocals and melodic piano runs recall that of Jackson Browne or early folksy Tom Waits.

Further demonstrating Heads Hands & Feet's wide-ranging musicality is "Hot Property." Remarkably, the combo fuses an energetic bluegrass-inspired instrumental introduction to a funk-driven melody that would not have been too out of place coming from southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd. Of equal (if not arguably greater) prowess is the downhome, organic "Jack Daniels," which returns the sound to a loose groove mirroring the Band's rural rockers "Up on Cripple Creek" or "Life Is a Carnival." Tracks...Plus (1996) reissues both the original ten-song platter with a pair of additional non-LP sides, "Silver Mine" and "Warming Up the Band." 
by Lindsay Planer

1. Let's Get This Show On The Road (Albert Lee, Chas Hodges, Pete Gavin, Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 3:53
2. Safety In Numbers (Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 3:36
3. Roadshow (Albert Lee) - 3:16
4. Harlequin (Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 4:26
5. Dancer (Albert Lee, Chas Hodges, Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 3:21
6. Hot Property (Pete Gavin, Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 4:58
7. Jack Daniels (Albert Lee, Chas Hodges, Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 3:30
8. Rhyme And Time (Albert Lee) - 2:41
9. Paper Chase (Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 3:54
10.Song And Dance (Albert Lee) - 5:26
11.Silver Mine (Tony Colton, Ray Smith, Albert Lee) - 3:48
12.Warming Up The Band (Albert Lee, Chas Hodges, Pete Gavin, Ray Smith, Tony Colton) - 3:26

Heads Hands And Feet
*Tony Colton - Vocals
*Pete Gavin - Drums, Percussion, Vocals
*Chas Hodges - Bass, Fiddle, Banjo, Guitar, Vocals
*Albert Lee - Lead Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
*Ray Smith - Rhythm Guitar, Vocals, Bass
*Gerry Hogan - Steel Guitar