OUT OF JUICE

Here are some albums I’ve been enjoying recently.

*

Yellow Magic Orch After Service

YMO (Yellow Magic Orchestra) – After Service

Alfa Records, Japan 1984

Live double LP set from Japanese electro-pop solid state survivors, featuring Ryuichi Sakamoto.

*

Hatfield & The North Afters

Hatfield & The North – Afters

Virgin Records 1980

Odd afterthought compilation from Canterbury scene English proggers, featuring chunks of the two studio albums plus a couple of live cuts and a single a/b. Get the studio albums first.

*

Sun Araw Ancient Romans

Sun Araw – Ancient Romans

Sun Ark Records, USA 2010

One of those bandonyms where an artist disguises their solo-ness with a band name. This is a modern neo-psychedelic space-song two-LP trip from prolific Californian Cameron Stallones. Did he choose the band name so his albums sit next to Sun Ra? Or to avoid proximity to Sylvester?

*

Paul Horn Great Pyramid

Paul Horn – Inside The Great Pyramid

Mushroom 1977 / Kuckuck 1983

Ancient Rome to Ancient Egypt. But this time, the musician is actually there. Flautist Horn explores sound, space and lots of existential eon-echoes in this fascinating album of a man sitting in a tomb with his flute.

*

Coltrane Africa/Brass

John Coltrane – Africa / Brass

Impulse! 1961 / DOL (Russia) 2015

Travelling south from Cairo, solo flute expanding to storming ensemble. This Coltrane classic is starting to push the boundaries. Exciting, stirring stuff from an ensemble that includes McCoy Tyner on piano and Elvin Jones on drums. Boo-hiss to DOL; an OK pressing but inadequate liner information. Watch out for any eastern European re-issues – caveat emptor.

*

Charles Cha Cha Shaw

Charles Cha-Cha Shaw – Into Morning

Folkways Records, USA 1976

A sometimes challenging but ultimately rewarding spiritual jazz album from this little known trumpeter. Art Blakey Jr on percussion. This release is something of a rarity, being a jazz album on the famous Folkways label.

*

John Lee Hooker Burning Hell

John Lee Hooker – Burning Hell

Riverside Records 1964 / DOL 2014

Some uncertainty about the details of this fabulous album. According to Allmusic, it was recorded in 1959 but not ‘officially’ released until 1992. This is Hooker honouring his roots; just him and his guitar, focussed and passionate in that uniquely laid-back way. Essential (even if you have to get the Russian re-issue).

*

Beggars Opera Waters Change

Beggars Opera – Waters Of Change

Vertigo 1971 / Repertoire (Germany) 1995

Until I win the lottery and can afford an original Vertigo vinyl copy, this Repertoire re-issue of a strong early 70s prog album will do fine. Keyboard player and mellotron artiste Virginia Scott contributes fine analogue textures and co-writes four pieces. Really rather excellent.

*

After more than three years of weekly posts, some 200 albums featured, and over a quarter of a million words cranked out, the Vinyl Connection blog batteries are depleted. The thrill, as BB King observed, is gone.

Of course there remain shelves of records to be spun, galleries of cover art to be celebrated, and anecdotal stories to be told, and that will probably happen. After a break, perhaps.

Those curious to stay in touch with what’s spinning at VC headquarters are invited to ‘Like’ the Vinyl Connection Facebook page. If you want to dip into Vinyl Connection’s past, the menu down the right side has some helpful categories.

Cheers, for now.

27 comments

  1. Dang. I’m sorry to hear this. You gotta follow your heart.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sorry to hear about your blog battery level but I completely understand. I hope at some point they’re recharged and you’re reinvigorated. Until then, bask in the glow of the content you’ve provided for us and never lose your love of music. See you on Facebook.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Bruce, I’ve quite enjoyed the weekly Vinyl Connection series, I’m sorry to hear the batteries have been depleted. I can relate, I’ve taken a couple month long breaks over the past couple years to recharge and then eventually looked forward to writing again.
    So I’m hoping your batteries will be rechargeable! But if not, I’ve enjoyed the ride and can check out the archives and Facebook. Take care & thanks for writing!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, sad to hear, Bruce. I’ll have to placate myself by continuing to go through your archive of posts. I’ll keep an eye out on Facebook and back here for what you have spinning (or what gems you uncover). Kudos for some ripper content you’ve provided to your readers, my friend. We’ll miss it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sorry to hear that, Bruce, but I totally understand. I have had problems keeping things going for a much shorter time than you’ve been at it. I look forward to keeping some kind of musical connection between us.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. aussiebyrdbrother · · Reply

    Say it ain’t so, Bruce! Believe me, I can only relate to sometimes `hitting the wall’, where either writer’s block, a lack of inspiration or just a general weariness set in (or a winning combination of all of the above), but it’s best to just take a breath, step back for a little while and then wait for that burst of momentum to kick in again, often on the spur of a moment. It just takes that one album for me that I suddenly come across that gets me thinking `Why does no-one ever talk about this album, I must tell the world!’, and then I’m at it all over again.

    Anyway, I know we’ll be in touch as always. You’re a good true friend, and I don’t take that lightly. Be safe and inspired, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I really enjoyed your posts. I think I came late to your blog party, so maybe by the time I catch up on your old posts, you may be back.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This has really made me a little sad. I too came late to the party but have really enjoyed your writing style.
    Hopefully a recharge is what is needed and I guess there is faceache.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The like I threw the post is in recognition of yet more sounds that you’ve threw on my radar (and the swell pictures there) – thanks!

    Anyhoo, sad to hear the thrill is gone. Like Bop, I can only hope the batteries recharge as I make my way through the archives!

    Thanks, Bruce. Catch you on the Facebox!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Sorry to hear the thrill has gone, Bruce. You were my first contact when Crotchety Man landed on planet Blogosphere and you gave me a warm welcome. I’m still trying to work out what your musical taste is but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your writing. I’ll keep an eye out for you on Facebook.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Bruce, hope you get your mojo back again soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I’ve seen something akin to your featured image here a few times on my 160-gig iPod and been temporarily overcome by fear knowing that, were it truly at its end, I would be unable to replace it and have not yet found a satisfactory alternate. Luckily for me, to date the treasured thing has successfully rejuvenated each time thanks to some powered rest.

    That’s the second time I recall a mention of the Paul Horn Giza Pyramid recording in these pages, and the second time I’ve been warily intrigued. I’ve been lucky enough to be inside the Pyramid three times over the last year and find myself having difficulty imagining how music recorded there would sound. The relatively small room is an echo chamber extraordinaire, lined by huge polished granite slabs with seams so tight no air can escape save through the small corner entrance. I imagine sound waves endlessly rolling over and washing each other out. The good news is that, unlike the ancient Egyptians, I can call on the Deities of modern technology to obtain an immediate answer. Spotify, here I come…

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hope you get the blog itch back soon

    Liked by 1 person

    1. … (hit “post” too soon there!) Always enjoy your posts but I know what it’s like to get burned out on the old blogging.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Here’s to the thrill of enjoying music and not having to talk about it. Sounds pretty nice, actually.

    I’ll see you over at Zuckerberg’s place. Looking forward to still keeping in touch, friend. And it seems I have quite a back log of posts to enjoy, so there’s that!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. dang, will miss the muse… it’s really hard to go weekly – I still do the articles for Gonzo weekly, but only get things posted to my blog now every couple weeks… still today will post notes about the LCD Soundsystem reunion at SF’s Outside Lands. Spectacular. Love your eclectic taste in music and have learned a lot : do post something if the Enz reunite!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Selfish bugger!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Thanks Bruce.
    All the best.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. See you ion the Facebook. Dang fine selection of albums to salute on your last (for the present) post.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. PS. Have to say, I don’t approve of putting objects on/adjacent to LP covers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Probably won’t catch on.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Hell! I’ve always enjoyed your posts, far more so than my ‘like’ rate would suggest. I really hope you feel like producing some more in the future. Best wishes

    Liked by 1 person

  21. What an incredible achievement to keep the weekly posts going for three years! Well done! Thanks for providing lots of enjoyment throughout.
    Talk soon

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Hope you won’t be gone for good !

    Liked by 1 person

  23. You’ve been an inspiration to me. By all means let those batteries recharge and enjoy some music for its own sake!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you sir. Very kind. And you know, just today, after spinning a few albums ‘just for pleasure, my typing fingers were feeling a little itchy…

      Liked by 1 person

  24. I’ve enjoyed a few of those and will look into the others. (CB is catching up and didn’t even know you were gone, I’m chasing a ghost).

    Liked by 1 person

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