lördag 13 mars 2010

I've got a thing for Spooky Tooth

Damn you Judas, damn you to hell and back for making so many people belive that the song "Better by you, better than me" was a piece of heavy metal junk from Judas Priset. I don't say that Judas are a totally bad band (I OWN a copy of the 1977 "sin after sin" album and I like it, really!) BUT why did they have to make a cover of a song that simply COULD NOT be "better by them" than (better by) Spooky Tooth???haha...

I know I know damn me as well and send me to hell but I DON'T like Judas Priset very much and I don't like Metallica and I DON'T like Iron Maiden. I've heard it through my both ears several times and I've almost be thrown of a tourbuss saying this thing a bit too loud at one time thanks to the punks in Benediction, haha.

Todays blog was meant to be about Spooky Tooth because they are really a great band. Some of their stuff are not very good though but when they are good they really crush. I am really keen on good vocalists and if Mike Harrison isn't one then I don't know where to turn for one. Some of his works on Spooky Two (1969,
Island records, ILPS - 9098) is unbeliveable, he's got that honesty about him that is hardly to be heard nowadays. I don't really understand him at all time though. What's with that falsetto vocals that comes at times, it's horrible to my ears. IF it is not that Wright who sings them parts, then Harrison must be God! The desperate sound of the chorus of Better by you, better than me is bloody amazing.

If one would like to hear what Harrison is really about than one should hear the far more obscure album Ceremony (1969, Island Records, ILPS 9107) [or my french foldout "much nicer hehe" Philips-pressing (1969,
Philips, 849512BY)] that they did with Pierre Henry. This album does really strange things to you, it is like its an "ordinary" Spooky Tooth album but with a really disturbed french composer adding electronic experiments over the whole thing.... Some things are good but some things are just destroying the otherwise good songs. The songs are as said good but they are very strange as well, I guess affected by the french guy trying his best to make everything hard to be heard. You have to hear this to understand my point. There is actually a chance to do this legally on Spotify!!!!!

Back to Harrison and his amazing vocals. Go for the song Have Mercy on Ceremony and understand the beauty and desperation in his voice. Enough said listen, damn it!!!

(Is this Pierre Henry hammering nails into the brain of Gary Wright who left the band after this wild album??? "Lord, have mercy!!!")

torsdag 11 mars 2010


Two bands today and they're both from the late 60s and almost equally fantastic. First out I would like to recommend Morning Dew (1967, Roulette, SR-42049). This is a nice piece of folk/psych/pop/prog-music of its time, untuned guitars, nice out of tune melodies and an singer who is eerily trustworthy. He is singing these somewhat melancholic lyrics with a passion that makes shivers down my spine. All of the songs are in their own style but with the same mood attached to them. Some more in the vein of blues, some really slow and atmospheric and some just straight popsongs but with that little extra thing that makes this album a 10 out of 10. The beautiful cover that is almost too happy adds a feeling of happy times gone really wrong. Can't really pin down this feeling but it is there in the record that you absolutely have to hear. My favorite songs are Crusader's smile and Gypsy (the guitarsolo at the beginning here almost makes my cry every time).

("Ahhh Shake your tambourine!")

The second band of this day is another psych/prog/druggy/garage-band from San Francisco
called Mad River
and their debut album (1968, Capitol records, ST 2985). This is seriously one of the most competent bands dealing with drugs as much as they must have done. EVERYTHING is trippy as hell, the drums are insanely composed BUT well-played and tight to the other guys doing their job equally perfect. The vocals are really nervous and whining filled with angst and drugrelated depression. I really feel sorry for theses addiction but damn what a nice albums this is. Hope they are doing alright in a rehab center today and don't plan any stupid renunion tours. This time as well a really nice cover, like they did them back in the 60s, almost a touch of black metal if it wasn't for the fully readable logo. On the copy I have (some later release on Edsel Records) there is a picture of the band on the back and the singer, the one in the middle, really doesn't look to know in what part of the universe he belongs, awsome pictuce! My favorite track on this album is not one of the most progy but instead the long atmospheric horribly dark song called War goes on, nothing is happy here but the sounds are as if from another dimension. Go ahead Amphetamine Gazelle!!!

("I'm too stoned to understand anything that goes on here!")
("Why did you put spider in my mind?")

lördag 6 mars 2010

Springtime for black metal

It is almost spring here in the city of Malmö in the most south of Sweden. I just watched the sun shine through our window the way it only does this time of the year. The sun is low but still shines strongly on everything that have become dusty during the long winter. Some years ago when I lived in another place I could watch this phenomena for hours and just listen to music that fitted the feeling that build up inside of me. It is not a sad thing even though the feeling is somewhat sad somewhat happy, melancholic but with somekind of unbounded knowledge/wonder of the most inner essence of everything. I guess the struggle between these emotions is the thing that keept me thinking about it. Describing this I seem very pretentious but this is the true feeling behind my interest in black metal and the feeling that I get from listening to most of the bands I've been doing through the years. Sitting here again with a big cup of black coffee, watching the sunbeams through the window and listening to a compilation I did one of these moments some years ago I would like to share this with whoever that reads this.

The compilation was called "Kadaver i solen"/"A cadaver in the sun" and was made the 8/5 -06.
1. Taake - ...Bjoergvin.. VII (2002, Over Bjoergvin Graater Himmerik, Wounded love records, WLR024)
Taake is a bit different from other bands from Norway and I think and hope it has to do with him, Høst, being influenced by A-ha. It really makes sense listening to his music up two his second album, then it seems Destruction took over sadly. The song starts with rain and I talked about sun, ha... just think about the similar feeling I described and the feeling of "The soft rains of April" by A-ha.
2. Old man's child - Swallowed by a buried one (1996, Born of the flickering, Hot Records, Shagrath 003)
Old man's child was a really good band I think, they made a good demo and a record and then became victims of a too "metal" sound like SOOOO many others. Aldrahn did some amazing guest vocals on this album as well.
3. Bak de syv fjell - De siste tanker (1997, From Haavardstun 7", Edge Circle Prod., EDGE001)
Why didn't this band write and record more stuff? Such an amazing rehearsal and then this 7" and nothing more....such a shame, I hope they come back one day. Even though I have to admit that both Wardruna and Jotunspor is really good stuff as well.
4. Ved buens ende - Autumn leaves (1995, Written in waters, Misanthropy Records, Amazon 006)
Describing this seems stupid since almost everybody interested in "alternative" black metal refer to this album as the best and the one that started this vein. I will be no different but I guess I differ when I say that I don't really see the music of Virus that good, it is not as full of feeling and musicality as the Ved buens ende stuff was, could it be that both Vicotnic and Skoll is missing in Virus?
5. Trelldom - Höyt opp i dypet (1998, Til et annet..., Hammerheart Records, HHR038)
Trelldom is a strange in the way that everything they have done is surrounded by such perfection, the sound, the arran
gements, the soul in the music. And when they released their 3rd album just some year ago the feeling was still there!!!!! how many bands do that when almost 10 years have past. Gaahl may not be the nicest of persons but damn his vocals is groundbreaking!
6. Fleurety - En sikkelse i horisonten (1995, Min tid skal komme, Aesthetic Death/Misanthropy Records, AMAZON 005/ADCD 002)
Here is an album that never is enough mentioned and listened to, I can't describe how much it has meant to me when starting out doing music myself. So many ideas that fit together so perfectly. I even did an almost rip off demo with one of my old bands with songs that sounded just a little bit too much like this, haha... never to be released.
7. Burzum - Der tod Wuotans (1999, Hliðskjálf, Misanthropy Records/Cymophane Productions, AMAZON 021/EY
E 006)
I know that the sound is cheap and so on, all the usual complaints about this album, but that doesn't take the feeling of it. All the nights spend in the forest with this album in my ears would never had been the same without
8. Dimmu Borgir - Under korpens vinger (1994, For all tid, No colours records, NC 003)
They were young, ambitious and evil as fuck but how big they ever become they will never be better than this. Again no perfection but the soul and the feeling is there, and if Aldrahn sung well on the Old man's child album he is VERY far from sining beautiful here, haha.
9. Darkthrone - De underjordiske (Ælia De Capitolina)
(2006, The cult is alive, Peaceville Records, CDVILEF132X)
No black metal compilation without Darkthrone but not necessarily something old, in my ears they are still good. Mostly Nocturno Culto's songs because they always have something melancholic about them. just listen to the guitarlead/solo in this one!
10. Marduk - Opus Nocturne (1994, Opus Nocturne, Osmose Productions, OPLP/CD028)
This is one of the most disappointing bands from Sweden in my ears, up to their third album they were really good and had such perfect vocals and riffs but then everything fell apart and today they are just like everbody else. Sor
ry if I hurt someone here but I do not understand their music anymore. This song is almost something that Opthalamia could have done but this is good and not like all the albums Opthalamia did (except their stuff before the first album that is actually good, haha). On this track Fredrik Andersson shows that he does not have to play at 3000bpms to be heard, haha.
11. Ulver - I troldskog faren vild (1995, Bergtatt - Et Eeventyr i 5 Capitler, Head not found, HNF 005)
Again the demo and the three first albums are the best but I do like the stuff did after as well, Perdition City is an all time favorite but would be very wrong on this compilation. I have always liked the sound/production of this, the drums seems so easily played and good sounding, raw but still very tight and soft hmmm strange.
12. Isengard - Storm of evil (1994, Vinterskugge, Peaceville records, CDVILE 61)
A brillian
t track in a vein that only excisted on this song. It always makes me think of Joy Division and I think it has something to do with the synthlead. Ian Curtis may find his ultimate replacement in Gylve when the Division are about to do their renunion tour? Only true belivers!!!
13. Bathory - Ring of gold (2002, Nordland 1, Black Mark Productions, BMCD 666-18)
Yes I am one of those who like Bathory after his six first albums, there is amazing stuff hidden in them and I always wished Qurthon to do an acustic album with just songs like this. Hope you play on in Valhalla, R.I.P.

That's about it and now the sun has almost went below the horizon and i will continue with red wine and some old 60s psych and prog instead!

(Something that could have been the cover of the compilation)