Monday 28 February 2022

Requested Le Forestier from Manu Galvin, lossless temporary only

Discography hereThis his first release came out in 1994.

Very light guitar-based, all instrumental fusion with some new agey tendencies here and there, nothing too energetic, no one works up too much of a sweat, very chill.  As usual with French music the accordion pays a visit.  It's a little similar to the later Akkerman albums.

Of all the tracks the one called Mon Frere reminds me the most of the classic old fusion sound and its deep emotional resonance:

Then for a more uptempo song, the opener Ne Quelque Part:

It's hard to believe this was put out in the middle of the alternative music craze, almost thirty years ago now.

Saturday 26 February 2022

Transit Zone from 1986: Jean Geeraerts, Francis Bourrec, Christian Meslier, Philippe Léogé, René Béranger

Wonderful cover considering the late date, for once.

Only one album from this group notable for the presence of guitarist Jean Geeraerts, who composed for legendary zeuhl group Dun. I could listen to that one every day and never get tired of it without a doubt.

The other composer was this gentleman, Pascal Vandenbulcke, who disappears from the database apart from an appearance with the marvelous Jean-Luc Chevalier whose many interesting albums I posted here earlier-- if links inactive, let me know and I'll reup them.

Very light fusion typical of the year this time with slapped bass, silly dance rhythms, silly repetitive chanted passages, that high-pitched and wimpy drum sound, etc.

The final track is the most progressive and moody by far:

I'd say that one piece makes the LP worth the price of admission (admittedly, extremely cheap)-- it's a wonder he didn't compose more music like this after the end of Dun given that he was definitely capable of some really thoughtful ideas. I love how both chord changes and melody are so completely odd-- yet the song as a whole really works perfectly, the only unfortunate aspect obviously being the 80s digital arrangement.

Wednesday 23 February 2022

Brazilian prog-fusion band Quantum, I and II, 1983 and 1994

Some really superb, consistently amazing music from this band featured today.

from discogs:

A Brazilian band formed at the beginning of the 80s, Quantum remained together for two years only. Anyway, it was long enough for them to release their namesake debut album in 1983, which sold more than 6,000 copies. Their style was clearly influenced by Camel and Hackett-era Genesis with added elements of jazzy nature, which provided some peculiar swing to the overall symphonic sound. The 1993 CD re-released edition included a bonus track recorded before their break-up with a different bass player. This bonus track, "Presságio", was actually part of the repertoire of a second album that would never get to be released. Or so it seems, since rumor has it that an actual Quantum second album from that era has been briefly circulating among collectors and fans in cassette format. But a definitely real second Quantum offering went to see the light of day in 1994, when the group reformed and recorded "Quantum II". The new line-up included two keyboardists and no guitarist.

Perfect music for me with just a rich neverending flow of creative ideas that seem to never cease from beginning to end, all in that classic symphonic progressive sound with chamber classical mixed in.  For example, their stunning Sonata:

And if it can be believed the follow up album more than a decade later is just as good, the Sword:

Monday 21 February 2022

Jazz Members Big Band (of Chicago) with 1992' Diggin' In (with lossless)


They actually made a few records back in the 80s to 90s but I found this mostly because I was searching for the remarkable composition called 19 Before Soc's Last Cup, quite the mini masterpiece indeed like Jacob's Tailor from long ago.  Have a listen if you haven't heard it before:

Btw, what is a soc? I'm a bit confused as is wikipedia here.  This was written by percussionist Glenn Cronkhite who was in Art Lande's Rubisa Patrol.

Unfortunately the rest of the album is quite generic big band, it's a surprise they included such a progressive item in there.

Saturday 19 February 2022

Marcos Resende and Index and other albums

From discogs:

In spite of his immense potential to become a musician, Marcos Resende travelled to Lisbon in the 60s to study medicine, though he continued to explore his musical passion on the side, forming a trio which ended up opening for Dexter Gordon at the Cascais Jazz Festival in 1971. From here he formed the electronic oriented prog-jazz group Status, who opened shows for the likes of Elton John, Phil Woods, Stan Getz, Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, but in spite of their relative live success they have no known recordings. Now established as a highly regarded keyboardist, composer, and innovative electronic musician, Resende returned home to Brazil. Inspired and invigorated by US jazz and British progressive rock, Resende went all out acquiring a keyboard arsenal, which included the Prophet 5, Yamaha CP-708 and Mini Moog. Determined to integrate his newfound inspirations with Brazilian rhythms and jazz traditions, he formed a new quartet with Rubão Sabino (bass), Claudio Caribé (drums) and the late great Oberdan Magalhães, of Banda Black Rio and Cry Babies fame, and recorded their self-titled debut at Sonoviso Studios with the legendary sound engineer Toninho Barbosa.

Though he wasn’t short of offers to release the album, Resende felt record companies were de-valuing the time and effort he spent absorbing his influences while establishing a career in Europe, and perfecting his sound with his Brazilian bandmates, as well as the magnitude of the recording they achieved. The album would only be released in 2021 by Far Out, only a matter of weeks after Marcos' death (by stomach cancer, on 12th November 2020, at the age of 73). In 1978, Marcos Resede & Index (already with other musicians, with the exception of Magalhães) finally debuted on disc with the mythical album Festa Para Um Novo Rei - home to the classic jazz-funk classic 'Vidigal' and released in the now iconic Philips Popular Brazilian Contemporary series (MPBC), but then without much repercussion. In As time passed, Resende become one of the most revered session keyboardists in Brazil; as a result his career as a bandleader took a backseat..

For sure the first recorded album, that is the ST Marcos Resende and Index is the best, and it's just a superb mix of latin-flavoured fusion.  For me the track called Nergal is as I always say like magic:

From the first released album at the time which was called Festa Para Um Novo Rei, from 1978, I really love the ST's varied passages and how different themes keep returning:

The four albums here are the 1976's ST, 1978's Festa Para Um, 1984's Som e Fantasia and 1989's ST Marcos Resende.

Wednesday 16 February 2022

Helmut Schonleitner and Helicopter with the missing Steps from 1990


From 1990, data here. This is very similar to the first album that I posted, with some bass solos, some silly 80s style fusion, but some interesting more composed and progressive ideas mixed in as well, as if in secret.

A track called Vademecum:

Monday 14 February 2022

Helmut Schonleitner and Helicopter with Bassonic and Straight Talk

Another in the long long line of later (post-seventies) German fusion bands that made slightly commercial but still inventive and interesting fusion, putting out in fact three albums in the period from 1988 to 1997 as you can see here.  And despite everything that went on in popular music, these uncompromising guys never gave up on the complex fusion ethos.  From the last album in 1997 the track called Deep Sea:

From the first release called Bassonic, Sweet Home:

Saturday 12 February 2022

Hermeto Pascoal's 1970

He is well known in prog circles for his Slaves Mass, which I found highly disappointing, but to me the first album which I only heard recently was a real surprise and delight.


Thursday 10 February 2022

Charles Lloyd from 1970 to 1979, 11 albums

From discogs:

Born: 15 March 1938, Memphis, Tennessee, USA

Charles Lloyd is an Afro-American jazz saxophonist, living in Santa Barbara, California. He also plays flute, piano, tarogato and percussion.

He did make an astonishing number of albums in this period beginning with Discovery in 1964 continuing on until the present day and into the future presumably too.  Up until those dreaded eighties, in fact, he put out roughly one album per year.  Of course since there is a load of 'junk dna' in these jazz records involving endless improvisations the actual genetic content is not the greatest, much like the human genome itself. I know it's snarky to state and I'm sorry.

Of interest is that he did range over an immense number of styles in this period starting with the ordinary type jazz or modal in the sixties, as you'd expect, moving into rock-influenced country, psychedelic (the long-winded type of electric droning stuff that is), then a little bit of fusion but not much before settling in the late seventies with new agey long-winded droney stuff. Then as you'd expect came a break in the 80s before he resurfaced and returned to great productivity in the nineties and after the millenium.

Note that in the early days he collaborated with Keith Jarrett, who I mentioned before made a series of stunning orchestral composed works in the mid-seventies that blew me away since I only knew him from the interminable solo Koln concert records.  (Without a doubt those are 100% progressive, especially this record, sadly forgotten.)  Later he worked with guitarist Gabor Szabo who made some really nice fusion, quite smooth, albums himself in the seventies, which I don't recall if I posted or not, but should've.

At any rate after a couple of albums in that bizarre kind of psych-rock-country style with little progressiveness, perhaps maybe similar to the protoprog era but with jazzy passages, he smoothed out the style overall or commercialized it you could say and then made a masterpiece with Weavings, which I think is head and shoulders above all other albums from him.  Then he got into the new age stuff with Big Sur, etc.  Title track of Weavings:

An example of the more new age stuff, from the next album in 1979 called Koto or Pathless Path, Pole Star:

Thanks to the commenter who brought my attention to this artist!

Note that Mark Isham plays synths on this record.

Monday 7 February 2022

The long awaited Broadway's Magic Tunes (1979 Germany), requested

Many many thanks to a long lost friend in Germany, now found, who shares this with us today.

This will make a lot of people happy to see.

Let's hope for peace across the world, despite the darkening skies. We have all suffered so much already!

They only made this one record:

German blues rock band, around 1979 in Ravensburg area.

A track called All so silent gives you an idea of what's involved here:

Friday 4 February 2022

Extra material from well known Scandinavians Splash, limited time only

I'm only going to include the extra material here, because I would assume everyone already has their three official releases which you can read about here.  Their (discogs) description:

Swedish jazz and rock band, combining Zappa influences, prog, soul and Nordic folk. They came from Söderhamn, and existed 1969 to 1979.

It's a wonderful, typically European-style prog fusion band. Initially more in the horn rock territory, but later very progressive indeed.

There were two cds of this unreleased put out and some of it is really good and highly interesting to any fan of the band. For example, Rosalias Sorg:

If you need the three official releases too let me know, but those are commonly available.

Wednesday 2 February 2022

The Faton Cahen-Yochk'o Seffer Septet in 2006's in Zao Family

I've covered both of these renowned French artists extensively before, for example, here. This release is so reminiscent of the beautiful music they all made back in the 70s, 80s. Information here.