Monday, 30 September 2019

А. Родионов & Б. Тихомиров ‎– "Пульс 1. Музыкальный Компьютер (Sport and Music Vol.1)" ( Мелодия ‎– C60 23379 009) 1985


Allegedly, this, on the cutting edge of youth culture relic,came with a free course of Steroids,which was the Soviet equivalent of the half-time Orange in the communist sporting arena.......of course I am joking,but the Soviet sports ministry weren't, when nearly all athletes for the CCCP were drugged up to the eyeballs in a desperate bid to out-do America and her allies.Which is still going on today,except now Russia are very Banned,hopefully forever.
In 1985,they had lost the space-race,were losing in the Arms-race, but the eastern bloc were untouchable in nearly every Olympics race.
This all sounds rather despicable,but at least they reserved the raping and enforced terminated pregnacies for the 14 year old female gymnasts.It made them more flexible in competition apparently.
I don't remember reading about this in Das Kapital!?
The Polit bureau preferred their comrades in the proletariat to exercise in silence,no screaming either no matter what your coach was doing to you; but word had it that a new fad had emerged in the USA called 'Aerobics',according to high level intelligence reports. Otherwise known as 'Exercise to Music'. An evil decadant capitalist called Colonel Jane Fondle,as stated in top secret KGB microfilm, had begun a mass undemocratic mobilisation of female special forces to stealthily learn hand-to-hand combat techniques ready to be parachuted in, pre-emptively,to attack Russian infastructure before the invasion. The uniform of pale pastal shades, headbands displaying rank, and so-called 'legwarmers, to conceal chemical weaponry, was obviously a new form of Dazzle camouflage.
This album of the latest modern music is the USSR's answer to this sinister threat against their gloriously dour existence......i'll let the ministry of sporting glory explain further:
The following introduction is taken from cover:

"Physical exercise to music can greatly help to organise rationally our work and rest. Both musical and human motion rhythms may be classed as "functional", with an essential influence on Man's health and productivity.
The present record is a joint venture of the Melodia sound-recording firm and the USSR Sport Committee, first in a planned series under "Pulse" heading meant to emphasize the vital importance of phisical culture.
"Pulse 1" of the "Sport & Music" series is recommended to accompany coaching sessions, sport festivals, competitions and other active recreations.
The series will be sufficiently versatile to adapt to various purposes that music can serve in sports.
The series' first disc (30 cm diametre (12"), 45 rpm) acquaints the public with electronic music composed with the help of an individual musical computer, for the first time in the USSR.
The scores were created on the display with the subsequent recording to magnetic tape. The composition is based on suites of contrasting instrumental miniatures.
We hope that the joint effort of Melodia and the USSR Sports Committee will promote Soviet electronic music in sports." 
(Field Marshall Vladimir Z. Leotardov, Chief inspector of young ladies bottoms and Beach volleyball Minister 1955-86;died of Radiation Poisoning at Chernobyl,1986, after fondling several firemen.)

Tracklist:

Современное Пятиборье, Сюита · Modern Pentathlon, Suite 12:30
A1 Догоняй, Компьютер (Кросс) · Catch Up, Computer (Cross-Country Race)
A2 Электронный Наездник (Скачки) · Electronic Jockey (Horse Races)
A3 В Гостях У Нептуна (Плавание) · Visiting Neptune (Swimming)
A4 Игровой Автомат (Стрельба Из Пистолета) · Gaming Slot Machine (Pistol Shooting)
A5 Барокко (Фехтование) · Baroque (Fencing)

Музыкальные Картинки, Сюита · Musical Sketches, Suite 13:00
B1 Марафон · Marathon
B2 Электронный Будильник · Electronic Alarm-Clock
B3 На Роликовых Коньках · Roller-Skating
B4 Соревнование · Competition
B5 Танец · Dance

DOWNLOAD or be shot HERE!

Various ‎Artists – "Ритмическая Гимнастика (Aerobic Exercises)" (Мелодия ‎– C60 21591 005) 1985


"This disc prepared by "Melodia" together with the USSR Sport Committee will replace the teacher. This record is the first in the series of programmes in aerobics, intended for collective, individual and even family exercises."...it says on the cover.
Replace the Teacher?....what happened to her?
Reassigned to do important heroic work treating radiation burns at Chernobyl no doubt?She's now long dead after contracting Non-Hodgkinsons Lymphoma at the age of 29.Then posthumously decorated as a Hero of the Soviet Union before being cremated as a radiation hazard.
The image of Jane Fondski on the cover clashes with my preferred vision of a Soviet Aerobics Instructor. A steroided up brute of a woman with a five o'clock shadow,stuffed into a uniform,stomping through the exercises wearing jackboots and a scowl.
I certainly feel a need to obey the voice on the record, if only I knew what the fuck shes banging on about.
The dialogue set over the top of some elevator synth pop could easily have been something that Jim Whelton ,of Homosexuals/Die Trip Computer Die fame, would have made back in the eighties as L Voag or Gus Coma. Far weirder than anything Nurse With Wound could have hoped to have made back in the day.But it was just another day in the asbestos factory for the Melodja back room staff.
You may think me in need of,or already on medication, but I play this album a lot....its out there maaaaan!

Tracklist:

A1 К Звездам (Towards The Stars) 1:02
A2 Сафари (Safari) 3:47
A3 Игра (Game) 1:21
A4 В Движении (On The Move) 2:18
A5 Заход Солнца (Sunset) 3:58
A6 Танец (Dance) 2:06
A7 Веретено (Spindle) 2:11
A8 К Звездам (Towards The Stars) 1:05
B1 Интродукция (Introduction) 1:43
B2 Просто Так (Just So) 2:29
B3 Ралли (Rally) 2:12
B4 Ручей (Stream) 1:47
B5 Аттракцион (Attraction) 2:18
B6 К Звездам (Towards The Stars) 3:03
B7 Мираж (Mirage) 3:35
B8 В Движении (On The Move) 1:23


Sunday, 29 September 2019

Teisutis Makačinas ‎– "Disko Muzika" (Мелодия ‎– C60-18011-2) 1982



Cold war era Lithuanian synth-pop anyone?
Yes,"Ilgas Laukimas" is Space's "Magic Fly" with the same notes but not necessarily in the right order, and Gėlės Veidrodyje is a Giorgio Moroder out-take;but who was gonna sue someone who lived in the Soviet Union?.....Nobody.....but this commie synth-pop classic is equally charming and gorgeously analogue, as well as pure eurovision cheese electro-schlager.....love it.

Tracklist:

1 Į Dieną Einam
2 Ilgas Laukimas
3 Prie Atminimų Upės
4 Klausyk, Mieloji
5 Gėlės Veidrodyje
6 Tau, Tėvyne

7 Ten, Kur Meilė

Saturday, 28 September 2019

Zodiac ‎– "Disco Alliance" (Мелодия ‎– C60-13771-2) 1980



It's 1980,the year of the Olympics, the one when nobody went because of the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan, and Disco was hitting big in the Baltic states.
Meanwhile ,in the students' club of the Latvian State Conservatoire of music, Janis Lusens (a Bloke by the way!) organized a rock-group, named "Zodiac". Their first album, "Disco Alliance",turned out to be the Soviet "Dark Side Of The Moon" if not for its spacey themes,then for its persistence in the Soviet charts. LP's, issued in large quantities, sold out immediately in every corner of that huge drab empire.The Melodija pressing plants were straining to keep up with demand, even with their low grade pressing standards, and cheapo sleeve printing.
Zodiac's mid tempo instrumental electronic rock had everyone dancing like the zombies in the 'Night Of The Living dead',from deepest Siberia to the Kremilin ballroom.Even leonid Brezhnev was seen tapping his foot to this classic Latvian cheese, momentarily before he had to stand and endure the mayday parade of nuclear missles.Ironically the very things that destroyed the USSR.Their incentiveless economy was drained dry by spending all their roubles on those rediculous ICBM's.
The only joy the proletariat had were the unannouced record releases that state label Melodija turned out.Your average Comrade only had to look at the front cover and read such forbidden pleasures as 'Instrumental Rock Group' that adorned the terrible cover of Zodiac's magnum opus, and you were away. The word spread quickly that there was a new Rock group from the glorious republic of Latvia, and everyone wanted one. Not easy to supply millions of albums when your industry runs on sludge. No-one knows how many copies they sold ,but it must have been over a few million.
It's a sort of cross between 'Dark Side of the Moon',BBC Testcard music,Georgio Moroder and 'Stars on 45',all the way from the Dark side of the Earth.

Tracklist:

A1 Zodiac 5:12
A2 Pacific 3:52
A3 Provincial Disco 4:18
B1 Polo 3:17
B2 Mirage 4:02
B3 Rock On The Ice 2:42
B4 Alliance 3:41


Argo ‎– "Discophonia" (Мелодия ‎– С 60—15173-4) 1981


After the copyright action taken against me by Hungarian Proggers Omega,I've lost my thread,so i've fallen back to the default setting of Iron curtain disco weirdness.Probably knocked up under order by a couple of Red Army Generals and a few huge Soviet made tube driven synths...hence the incredible warmth of the electronics.
I can just imagine hearing the medals rattling down at the KGB disco,as the higher ranking officers mingled with the conscripts in a frantic sea of Khaki's, greens and greys. Jackboots stomping on the state provided underlit floor a la Saturday Night Fever.
"Who says vee don't know how to have zer Fun" seeths a KGB colonel in his dress uniform.Grating his moulded asbestos false teeth, sparks leaping from the tendrils of his wirey eyebrow hair,reaching for someone or something to grab like a parasitic climbing plant.
If you wanted to dance without marching in columns in a land where The Bee Gees were Illegal.....at least the CCCP didn't get everything wrong?...then the state record label Melodiya  could provide you with a pure uncorrupted socialist version of Disco for the people. No elitest band picture, no song titles, just 40 minutes of weird low tempo electronic muzak to sway to then go home to your apartment block,or barracks before the curfew. 
"We don't go to Discos because its easy, we go to discos because it is hard" said JFK, and the Soviets agreed.Its certainly a challenge to dance to this stuff, where standing still is a popular option,a real floor emptier,....unless a western spy is present then "YOU WILL DANCE!"....at gunpoint if necessary.The best dancer will receive a Hero of the Soviet Union medal.
All together now...."Deeeeeskooooo"....as some unnamed Lithuanian consript hisses on track A1.

Tracklist:

A1 7:55
A2 4:30
A3 3:28
A4 3:41
B1 7:44
B2 6:20
B3 4:52


Wednesday, 25 September 2019

Locomotiv GT ‎– "Bummm!" (Pepita ‎– SLPX 17467) 1973


It's the Iron Curtain Village People! The one on the left is a Leninist Architect from  Hungarian Special Forces, the one in the dungerees is a highly decorated Plumber, moonlighting in the Polit Bureau. Then we have Gabor, he's a state dentist and concrete technician, and the last one on the right isn't in the band at all, he's a secret policeman following the other three,taking notes and logging their sex lives for future blackmail useages.It ain't called 'Bummmm' for nothing y'know!
Formed by ex-members of Hungarian Prog nancy boys Omega,(Sorry, the Omega post has been removed due to a DCMA copyright violation????Though who'd want to copy that I'd like to see their psychological profiling?) Locomotiv GT wanted to 'butch' it up a fraction,get rocking,and wear western clothing.They certainly knew how to have fun in the Communist Bloc,but these chaps were disappointingly lacking in essential Polit Bureau Chic.Their purpose may have well have been to infiltrate the evil western youth culture and when they were number one on zer billboard chart-ess, call for that longed for socialist revolution.
The only thing wrong with that plan was that they were Shit!
They certainly try very hard ,but fail, to 'Kék Asszony' in the same way le Royaume-Uni fails to kick ass on the Eurovision Song Contest while the former Soviet Bloc states chuckle heartily at our dismal attempts at talent show Schlager pop.Don't be surprised to see Locomotiv GT ,reformed and rockin' at the next Eurovision,and....WINNING!
"You may have zer Beatles but vee hapf zer Locomotiv GT....vee arse laffink out loud hahahahahaaaaaaa!" said the Norwegian judge; the same one that commentated on the 2-1 defeat of England in world cup qualifying in 1981....check this out HERE!

NB. You won't believe this but the previous post of very shit Hungarian prog ice dancers, Omega, has been pulled due to a DMCA complaint!?... those communists eh? The cover was funny anyhow so i'll put a link here so you don't miss out.

Tracklist:

A1 Ringasd El Magad 4:50
A2 Kék Asszony 3:30
A3 Gyere, Gyere Ki A Hegyoldalba 2:45
A4 Visszamegyek A Falumba 4:00
A5 Bárzene 4:15
B1 Ő Még Csak Most 14. 3:45
B2 Szabadíts Meg 3:40
B3 Vallomás 3:55
B4 Mondd Mire Van 2:35
B5 Miénk Itt A Tér 3:00


Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Area ‎– "Arbeit Macht Frei (Il Lavoro Rende Liberi)" (Cramps Records ‎– CRS LP5101) 1973


There are times when one should be humbled by musicianship, and this is definitely one of those rare ocassions.
Comfortably in the top three of Italian Prog, this debut album by prog-fusion commies, Area, blows most similar,jazzy Canterbury style bands out of the water.Just like the Royal Air Force did to the Italian Navy using outmoded bi-planes loaded with torpedo's in the early days of WW2.A tactic copied very sucessfully by the Japanese at Pearl Harbour.
There's a nifty extermination camp vibe as well,which apart from some ear shredding yodelling,makes this ferocious record nearly perfect;but, perfection is a quality that should be avoided at all costs,which Area do, so that means this is perfecton by default.Try and explain that to an alien computer in Star Trek and you'll end up with an explosion on your guilty hands.

Tracklist:

A1 Luglio, Agosto, Settembre (Nero) 4:27
A2 Arbeit Macht Frei 7:56
A3 Consapevolezza 6:06
B1 Le Labbra Del Tempo 6:00
B2 240 Chilometri Da Smirne 5:10
B3 L'Abbattimento Dello Zeppelin 6:45


Monday, 23 September 2019

L'Uovo Di Colombo ‎– "L'Uovo Di Colombo" (Columbia ‎– 3 C 064-17889) 1973


The Italian 'Egg' was also a keyboard driven monster, like its UK counterpart. Exemplary musicianship,but no 13/12 time signatures as far as I can hear. In between the slightly painful balladering parts, this bunch of Romans could certainly get their groove on.....they should have made a soundtrack for an Italian crime movie, as was a short trend around 1976 after most proggers were unemployed. What came first the group or the Egg?

Tracklist:

A1 L'Indecisione (Vedi ''I King'')
A2 Io
A3 Anja
A4 Vox Dei
B1 Turba
B2 Consiglio
B3 Visione Della Morte
B4 Scherzo


Il Volo ‎– "Il Volo" (Numero Uno ‎– DZSLN 55667) 1974


Two of Formula 3 were also in Italian Prog souper group, Il Volo (The Flight).Which consisted of Alberto Radius and Gabriele Lorenzi from Formula 3,a bloke from Flora Fauna Cemento (Mario Lavezzi), another chap from Osage Tribe (Bob Callero),one more from Dallaglio (Gianni Dall'Aglio himself!), along with a soundtrack composer ,like nearly everyone was in Italy in the seventies,Vince Tempera.
The results are a very laid back form of melodic prog verging on the 'adult-orientated' anathema,all recorded with that great mid-seventies acoustically dead ambiance.A kind of Post-Prog before the rest of the planet, except Italy, were very over it all.

Tracklist:

Come Una Zanzara 4:56
La Mia Rivoluzione 3:05
Il Calore Umano 4:30
Il Canto Della Preistoria (Molecole) 4:15
I Primi Respiri 3:43
La Canzone Del Nostro Tempo 4:07
Sonno 3:58
Sinfonia Delle Scarpe Da Tennis 2:49


Sunday, 22 September 2019

Formula 3 ‎– "Sognando E Risognando" (Numero Uno ‎– ZSLN 55152) 1972


I have no idea what they were thinking when they decided to use this awful taste bypass art as the cover? Little Orphan Annie grown up, but as an malnourished death camp prostitute being crushed by ,what seems to be, a rubber ring!?
The music, for the most part, is divided into suites, and largely stays in classic prog territory, lots of organ dominated keyboardisms, shifting melodies, 'rocking-out' sections,and,you'll be pleased to know, not much singing.

Tracklist:

Sognando E Risognando

A1a Fermo Al Semaforo 2:53
A1b Sognando 1:15
A1c La Stalla Con I Buoi 5:12
A1d Risognando 1:17


L'Ultima Foglia

A2a L'Albero 5:18
A2b Non Mi Ritrovo 4:23
B1a Finale 2:12

Storia Di Un Uomo E Una Donna

B2 Storia Di Un Uomo E Una Donna 5:02

Aeternum

B3a Tema 2:32
B3b Caccia 1:42
B3c Interludio 6:00
B3d Finale 1:15

Saturday, 21 September 2019

Semiramis ‎– "Dedicato A Frazz" (Trident ‎– TRI 1004) 1973


Isn't that the incredible Hulk's calmer brother on the cover? Or the Jolly Green Giant on tranquilizers?
This band were the Italian Prog equivalents of 'The Prats' or 'Die 2. Liga' as they were all teenagers, but unlike Their punk rock equivalents they were supremely Virtuosic on their chosen instruments.....the little show-off bastards! 
Formed when they were all 15 in 1970, these smart-arse kids were pushing 18 when this album came out....almost over the hill in pop terms, so Prog was a wise career choice.Sadly,as seemed to be the norm in Italian Prog, they did one excellent album then fucked off to be forgotten....all except singer/guitarist Michele Zarrillo, who managed to achieve a 'pop' career somehow!
According to this very favorable review, Semiramis "pile it on from every angle. Synths go awry, voices scream, guitars go a hundred miles a second, drums jettison you across the room. How could a group compose so many ideas? There are literally 15 albums on this!"
Yep,thank you unknown scribe, that sums it all up rather succinctly.

Tracklist:

1 La Bottega Del Rigattiere
2 Luna Park
3 Uno Zoo Di Vetro
4 Per Una Strada Affollata
5 Dietro Una Porta Di Carta
6 Frazz
7 Clown


Friday, 20 September 2019

Maxophone ‎– "Maxophone" (Produttori Associati ‎– PA-LP 57) 1975


'Stars in their Eyes' was a terrible, cheesey singing show on Uk TV in the nineties,where members of the public impersonated their singing heroes.After a short interview with the suspected Peadophile host, the constestant would say, ...and Tonight Matthew (the creepy host) I'm going to be Neil Diamond,or for example,check out this Greek version of the Show here....can TV get more wrong than this clip of a member of the Greek public as Stevie Wonder?...this is as hilarious as it is shocking!
If there was ever a Prog Stars in their Eyes, Maxophone would have said, "Tonight, we're gonna be Marillion!"
Maxophone were Italy's version of Marillion,who were the UK's Peter Gabriel's Genesis replacements for all those sad Genesis fans who mourned the loss of their favourite bunch of public school boys.....Phil Collins excepted 'cus he was workin' Claahs mate!
Its a very good facsimile of the Gabriel era if you like that sort of thing,but essentially, whats the point?Just listen to Genesis?Or better still, don't listen to Genesis at all!
This is the allegedly inferior 'English Version'.

Tracklist:

A1 Life Can Be Like Music
A2 Six Against One
A3 When We Were Young
B1 Fase
B2 I Heard A Butterfly
B3 Live Together Or Die


Thursday, 19 September 2019

Goblin ‎– "Suspiria" (Cinevox ‎– MDF 33.108) 1977



Oooooh ya! Scary movie! With soundtrack by Italian Proggers Goblin;heard previously on the classic "Profondo Rosso" soundtrack.
Which I've never seen.Also never seen "Suspiria" sadly, as i'm desensitized to,the so-called 'horror' genre....and allergic to sub-titles, and/or dubbing.
No horror movie can possibly approach anywhere near the true Horror of reality.Compared to that this movie has to be micky mouse stuff. Although, having said that,the allegations i've heard about the shenanegans that went on in the actual Micky Mouse club, maybe that isn't an adjective one should use in this case.
Now then, music can get pretty disturbing.It leaves the horror to the imagination,same as does literature. The real bowel dropping fear exists only in our own minds and in the ruthless darkness of the natural world. 
That screaming woman on the rear cover is a depressingly familiar sight whenever a pretty lady is confronted by the naked 'moi'. But a quick burst of goblin will soon put that right.However, making sweet lurve to the 'Suspiria' soundtrack is not exactly recommended.Barry White it is not.
Goblin goes experimental on this one,producing something along the lines of The Exorcist crossed with The Forbidden Planet and Blade Runner. The child-like,music box melody of the main theme is an often-used tactic to loosen the remains of yesterdays dinner ,and works very nicely here again.It's a classic piece of creeping evil.
I know what you're all asking...."Do we get any proper PROG maaaan?";....well yeah we do, but you have to wait for the "Black Forest/Blind Concert" section for that joyous moment,that has a slight 'Dirty Harry' feel about it,which we all know, is a GOOD thing?

Tracklist:

1 Suspiria 6:00
2 Witch 3:11
3 Opening To The Sighs 0:31
4 Sighs 5:16
5 Markos 4:04
6 Black Forest 6:06
7 Blind Concert 6:13
8 Death Valzer 1:50
9 Suspiria (Celesta & Bells) 1:33
10 Suspiria (Narration) 1:46
11 Suspiria (Intro) 0:32
12 Markos (Alternate Version) 4:09
13 Suspiria (Alternate Take) 3:50



Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Il Rovescio Della Medaglia ‎– Contaminazione (RCA Italiana ‎– DPSL 10593) 1973



RDM's third album sees them dabbling with 'aren't we clever fuckers' ELP territory,always a damgerous game.
It contains four pieces from Bach's "Well-tempered Clavier" seamlessly integrated with RDM's own Symphonic Rock beefed up with the arrangements of Oscar nominated Argentinian Spaghetti Western Soundtrack composer, Luis Bacalov. I don't think this collaboration was used as a soundtrack,but i could be wrong? If I am ,don't tell me! The world's overflowing with too much information and far too much choise as it is.Leave me just a little bit of mystery to make life magical once more please!?...he pleaded in vain!


Tracklist:

A1 Absent For This Consumed World 0:57
A2 Ora Non Ricordo Più 1:44
A3 Il Suono Del Silenzio 5:07
A4 Mi Sono Svegliato E.. Ho Chiuso Gli Occhi 4:11
A5 Lei Sei Tu: Lei 1:59
A6 La Mia Musica 3:57
B1 Johann 1:20
B2 Scotland Machine 3:01
B3 Cella 503 3:12
B4 Contaminazione 1760 1:03
B5 Alzo Un Muro Elettrico 2:47
B6 Sweet Suite 2:13
B7 La Grande Fuga 3:32


Tuesday, 17 September 2019

New Trolls ‎– "Concerto Grosso Per I New Trolls" (Cetra ‎– LPX 8) 1971


As the Three Billy Goats Gruff gazed over the bridge at the fresh green grass of Italian Prog from a field where everything musical had been consumed,digested and shat out,leaving nothing but crap, and rap. The New Trolls,and their geeky fans lay in wait for them, to jealously guard their secret and threaten to gobble up any music fan looking for greener pastures.
There is even an elitism in such dodgy quarters as Italian Prog, just as it does/did in Krautrock. A maelstrom of nerds squabbling as to who was into it first, and who knows the most obscure Progressivo Italiano band......who's more Kraut or Italiano than thou.That 'I was a Kraut before you was a Kraut' bollocks!
Well, like Little Billy Goat Gruff,who trotted jauntily over the bridge,and left his brothers to be chomped down by the Trolls like an old twix,the fresh green shoots of an ignored genre lie awaiting in the lush fields of Italian Prog. Yes,the grass is always greener on the other side of the bridge,but consume too much and it can make you violently ill....so beware! Like 'Krautrock', it most certainly ain't all good......but this film soundtrack collaboration with composer Luis Enriquez Bacalov is certainly reclining comfortingly in the 'Jolly Good' pile.
Its very much a blend of symphonic Prog Rock Italiano style and lush Morricone-like strings, swirling lushly in the breeze like the long green grass of the field beyond the bridge in that popular Norwegian Fairy Tale.At the same time there is a certain cheesiness that could find it filed alongside James Last in the loungecore section.
Don't let the Prog Trolls keep it to themselves.

Tracklist:

1.Allegro 2:15
2.Adagio (Shadows) 4:50
3.Cadenza - Andante Con Moto 4:10
4.Shadows (Per Jimi Hendrix) 5:30
5.Nella Sala Vuota 20:25

6.La Prima Goccia Bagna Il Viso (part 1) 3:54
7.La Prima Goccia Bagna Il Viso (part 2) 4:43

Monday, 16 September 2019

Osanna ‎– "Preludio Tema Variazioni Canzona (Milano Calibro 9 OST)" (Fonit ‎– LPX 14) 1972



This album was a collaboration between Osanna and well-known soundtrack composer Luis Bacalov, one of three such rock meets symphonic works conceived by Bacalov. The others,of course,will follow.
This was used for the gangster film "Milano Calibro 9" ,which I haven't seen, but the soundtrack versions are allegedly different to those on the album!?...an unfortunate habit for a lot of Italian soundtracks.The same thing happened to Goblin and their soundtrack for 'Profondo Rosso'.
The bizarre world of The Italian Movie Soundtrack contains many varied beasts,among the most popular has to be an Ennio Morricone western and the funky but weird planet of Italian Porno.
We can now add Osanna's collaborative prog rock meisterwerk to that illustrious list, 'cus its rockingly innovative and...er....molto progressivo italiano.
It seems that Osanna were not conducive for the obligatory lovemaking scene in the film as the lovely young lady puts on a record by Italian prog/soundtrack rivals, New Trolls instead!?

Tracklist:

A1 Preludio
A2 Tema
A3 Variazione I
A4 Variazione II
B1 Variazione III
B2 Variazione IV
B3 Variazione V
B4 Variazione VI
B5 Variazione VII
B6 Canzona


DOWNLOAD some non-porn italian soundtrack HERE!

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Le Orme ‎–"Felona and Sorona / Felona E Sorona" (Deluxe Edition) 1973



The resplendent statues on the sleeve emit a certain 'Concentration Camp Chic' that suggests......"Art". So, beware, this could well be a Concept album about two planets which revolve around each other, without ever coming into contact. While Felona is shiny and flourishing, Sorona is dark and home to plagues and catastrophes,like Brexit and Trump-ism: however, in the second part of the suite, the fate of the two planets are inverted.Perfect fodder for anglo-prog doom merchant Peter Hammill to translate the Italian lyrics into English for the Anglo-Saxon market.....which he did.....shit, now I know what they're singing about!!!!?
Like Van Der Graaf, Le Orme were/are a trio who make a gloomy form of dramatic Prog that is very reflective of these polarized times in which we exist.
Another certified Italian Prog classic with a Science Fiction as tool for criticism element.Yes, as usual with Concept albums,there is a Bad Musical in there somewhere.Just cast those aspersions from your mind and listen to the version that isn't in your mother tongue for safety.Life was better when information was severely limited.Mystery is an under-rated concept,just as this album is an under-rated concept......album.

Tracklist:

Disc 1 : English Version:


1.1 In Between
1.2 Felona
1.3 The Maker
1.4 Web Of Time
1.5 Sorona
1.6 The Plan
1.7 The Balance
1.8 Return To Naught 


Disc 2: Italian Version:

2.1 Sospesi Nell'incredibile
2.2 Felona
2.3 La Solitudine Di Chi Protegge Il Mondo
2.4 L'Equilibrio
2.5 Sorona
2.6 Attesa Inerte
2.7 Ritratto Di Un Mattino
2.8 All'infuori Del Tempo
2.9 Ritorno Al Nulla


Saturday, 14 September 2019

Osanna ‎– "Palepoli" (Fonit ‎– LPX 19) 1972


Back in 1977, I never used to even recognise that stuff like this existed, even though I had a copy of Tubular Bells, and Pink Floyds 'Animals' album somehow. I heard Peter Gabriels Genesis for the first time about ten years ago, and, there may still be some heckling from some sections,but fuck them, its Good.
As a kid I liked Queen(still do...up until Hot Space anyway), they were Prog too. But even though 'Animals' is one of thee darkest albums ever made, it had to make way for shite like The Drones,Slaughter and the Dogs, Sham 69. Even though I love those B-punk groups for different reasons that I love Italian Prog ,it was kinda obligatory that you rejected the old order.Times were different back then.I would have died to have been caught with a Genesis album in my possession.As it went, I had to hide my Pink Floyd album,and stash Tubular Bells in the attic.
I got into what was later called 'Post-Punk', which I still regarded as 'Punk', when really it was new Prog, but without any musicians,and better clothes. The Adverts great(most thought it shit!?) second album was a Prog concept album made with zero musical ability;I'd love to hear what Osanna could have done with 'Cast of Thousands'.One day i'll remix it and turn it into a west-end nostaglia musical then you'll see.
'Twas implied that the musicianship on Prog records was elitist,therfore the kids invented Punk Rock so that they could have a go.The music got dumber and everyone could say that they were as good as the bands they went to see.Then the bands themselves were trapped in a one chord prison and disolved up their own arses.The inclusiveness of Punk rock in effect destroyed it,along with the human flocking instinct to be the same as everyone else,while at the same time believing they are different.If they really wanted to be different they would have liked the music all their peers hated....Prog.
Magazine were as close as you got to Progressive Rock in 1978,but that sounds like a bunch of sneery nursery rhymes compared to "Palepoli".
You know what you're gonna get with this one.Two side long tracks full of light and shade,difficult time signature changes,shifting intensities,tempo's,and Mellotrons....did I mention there's a Mellotron on it?.yes?...well there is.

Tracklist:

1.Oro Caldo (18:32)
2.Stanza Città (1:45)

3.Animale Senza Respiro (21:37)

Friday, 13 September 2019

Museo Rosenbach ‎– "Zarathustra" (Ricordi ‎– SMRL 6113) 1973


Inside this very eye-catching cover is yet more extremly complex Italian progressive rock with a Nietzschean concept stitching it all together.
Despite a slow start, with that archetypal throaty Italian whine via 'Jesus Christ Superstar' that passes for vocals, this album quickly transforms itself into a franticly shifting piece of superb symphonic prog.
As what seemed to be the norm in Italy,Museo Rosenbach lasted for one album,this one,broke up, then reformed in the 21st century when the world had caught up.
Rather good,its got Mellotrons on it,and I'm sure I've met that geezer on the cover somewhere before!? Wasn't he in Crass?

Tracklist:

Zarathustra 20:35
1. L'Ultimo Uomo
2. Il Re Di Ieri
3. Al Di Là Del Bene E Del Male
4. Superuomo
5. Il Tempio Delle Clessidre
-
6.Degli Uomini 4:04
7.Della Natura 8:28
8.Dell'Eterno Ritorno 6:18


Thursday, 12 September 2019

Arti & Mestieri ‎– "Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio" (Cramps Records ‎– CRSLP 5501) 1974


This one is tilt-ing towards the Jazzy end of the Prog spectrum, A Kind of an italian Soft Machine meets the Italian Mahavishnu Orchestra,via an Italian King Crimson. 
Lashings of Italian Mellotron, the Italian singing isn't appalling, the Italian musicianship is beyond superb......È bello.
Got no funny stories about Italians, and I don't feel like slagging anyone Italian off...except maybe a certain straw haired Old Eatonian of Turkish extraction, and say that Boris Johnson is a fat lying privileged Cunt.

Tracklist:

1.Gravità 9,81 4:05
2.Strips 4:39
3.Corrosione 1:37
4.Positivo/Negativo 3:29
5.In Cammino 5:36
6.Farenheit 1:15
7.Articolazioni 13:24
8.Tilt 2:29


Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Goblin ‎– "Profondo Rosso" (Original Soundtrack) 1975



Like a bit of Goblin do ya? I bet you do, you filthy fuckers!
Well what sensible young man wouldn't?...I say 'man', because women don't like prog rock......period (pun intended).
Especially if its a groovy Italian Prog soundtrack album that thinks its a cross pollination between "The Exorcist" and "Dirty Harry".
"Death Dies" is a funky groove ridden contrafaction of Lalo Schifrin's peerless "Dirty Harry" soundtrack from 1971, but progged up a notch.
"Mad Puppet" is a slightly altered, copyright infringement dodging, version of Mike Oldfield's "Tubular Bells" side one. Luckily Michael is so rich he couldn't give a rats ball-bag who steals his work anymore....if he ever heard this uber obscure soundtrack ever,which one doubts greatly.
The title track sounds uncannily like the theme to "Halloween",or one of John Carpenters other self penned soundtracks...maybe he stole this from Goblin,as his soundtrack career started around the same time.If he did, Goblin certainly have no grounds for complaint in the plagarism department.
I've added the film versions of the best tracks as a bonus for you lucky sods.

Tracklist:
1 Profondo Rosso 3:45
2 Death Dies 4:37
3 Mad Puppet 6:30
4 Wild Session 5:40
5 Deep Shadows 5:45
6 School At Night 2:05
7 Gianna 1:47


Bonus Tracks:

Death Dies(Film Version part 1)
Death Dies (Film Version Part 2)
10 Death Dies (Film Version part 3)
11 Deep Shadows (Film Version)
12 Profondo Rosso (Remix)

Garybaldi ‎– "Astrolabio" (Fonit ‎– LPQ 09075) 1973


Now this is yer proper ever shifting Progressive Rock,with the emphasis on the 'Rock', over two side long tracks.The format any good Prog album should have. 
There's less of that 'Jesus Christ Superstar' singing which is a major plus point. So now you can compare and contrast with debut LP 'Nuda',which has been labelled 'Shite!'by certain quarters...saucy cover art though.
I don't have anymore public humiliation stories that i can connect with this one.....although the 'Labio' part of the title gives me a few cheeky ideas that I will refrain from using for the sake of my diminishing dignity.

Tracklist:

1.Madre Di Cose Perdute
2.Sette?


Tuesday, 10 September 2019

Garybaldi ‎– "Nuda" (CGD ‎– FGL 5113) 1972





I know what you're thinking, "PHwoooaaaarrrr!", right?

Knowing the average Prog Rock enthusiast, he won't have a girlfriend.Needless to add, a young lady blessed with the looks like the one portrayed on this wonderful triple gatefold sleeve, would not be interested in a greasy haired geek with a 'Yes' T-shirt tucked neatly into his high waistbanded jeans.Oh No.
So, what better way to sell your Progressive Rock albums than putting an artists impression of what he's heard a pretty young lady would look like ,if he'd ever seen one, and plaster it all over the sleeve of your greatest work. 
I dread to think what went on in that bedroom behind the door with a sign that said 'Mum and Dad KEEP OUT!', as this Italian Prog magnum opus blasted out of his accurately placed state of the art speaker system. I suggest a box of kleenex would have vanished within 24 hours.
I recall an incident back in the nineties, when I still went out, a young lady who looked not unlike the untouchable nymphette on the cover from a gang of similarly gifted fillies.Raced across the busy road that separated us in her stilletos, ripped off my hat and screamed..."Hey look.....A GARY BALDY", as she slapped the top of my bald head like Benny Hill did to that shrivelled up old guy in his TV shows.
"HaHAHAAAAAAAA" she guffawed, echoed by her possie of mildly inebriated followers, who, you guessed it also wanted a go.
I warned that the next one who does that will get a kick up the fucking arse.....you could say things like that in the nineties!
My humiliation was not complete however, as one of the other spice girls suggested that I was the lead girlies type,but the wrong colour!? To which she grabbed my crotch and proclaimed,rather disdainfully...."Hmmmmm, Not bad!",then suggested i follow them to some terrible night club.
"As charming as the invitation was,I'm expected elsewhere,sorry", I retorted,but sadly tempted(i'm a man, flesh and Blood).Clutching onto my last shard of self-respect we went our separate ways.

As for 'Nuda', the singing is atrocious, the singer was described as having an 'unusual/unique singing style'....you can say that again.
Now that its been pointed out, Italian rock singing is not unlike a cat enduring being swung around in a circle by its tail,complete with doppler effect and those apalling cat in a centrifuge distress sounds that the worlds second most popular pet emits from time to time.
I used to tune these vocals out, but now, thanks to the comments section (yeah Thanks lads!), a door has been opened, and I can only hear the singing, goading me, mocking me.
The music ,however ,is fantastic...as rock goes....you don't get better played,arranged,with Ooodles of light and shade, than this stuff.
But the Vocals are shite, and there's NO MELLOTRON!!!!!?

Tracklist:

A1 Maya Desnuda
A2 Decomposizione, Preludio E Pace
A3 26 Febbraio 1700
A4 L'Ultima Graziosa
Moretto Da Brescia
B1a Goffredo (Introduzione)
B1b Il Giardino Del Re (Intermezzo)
B1c Dolce Come Sei Tu (Epilogo)



Quella Vecchia Locanda ‎– "Quella Vecchia Locanda" (Help! ‎– ZSLH 55091) 1972



"Oh You guys are soooo Talented!".....is likely what the group members of 'Quella Vecchia Locanda',translated as 'That Old Inn'(What???),would have loved to hear.....but we don't do that here do we? That was one of the main reasons for the outbreak of the Punk Rock disease....the music of evny as we now call it. We got over that though,and now we admire and respect the music made between 1971 and 1975, as long as they don't do it again.....we have the records already thanks. 
This bunch of classically trained long hairs, drag us screaming through the complete gamut of emotions across the eight tracks of this classical/Rock fusion masterpiece.It rocks out ruthlessly in places, yet in others you're fighting back a lickle melancholic tear,Awwwwww.
A veritable journey through a glorious eight colour rainbow of early seventies progressive rock.
Dunno who wrote the closing track,but its so classically melodic,with its plaintive piano melody,that it sounds like it was written by someone else? Either a Chopin outtake, or a rejected main theme by Francis Lai or Micheal Legrand.Anyway, I'm sure I've heard it before, sounding uncannily like the sad bit at the end of every episode of The Incredible Hulk TV Series, where David Banner was always having to move on after finding love, then it all goes pear-shaped after he loses his temper and smashes up the gaff. The album sleeve insists that it was a group composition, so maybe they did write it?.....could have won an Oscar there lads.

Tracklist:

A1 Prologo
A2 Un Villaggio, Un'Illusione
A3 Realtà
A4 Immagini Sfocate
B1 Il Cieco
B2 Dialogo
B3 Verso La Locanda
B4 Sogno, Risveglio E...


Monday, 9 September 2019

Campo Di Marte ‎– "Campo Di Marte" (United Artists Records ‎– UAS 29497) 1973


Ah, this is what I like to see...band forms, makes uncompromisingly unpopular music, splits up before album release.....never heard of again......well,... until this stuff got popular with us music nerds and they reformed to play lucrative live concerts that is!
This is classic complex Italian heavy symphonic prog portraying a loose, 'war is futile', concept.Something Italians are very familiar with, after changing sides in both world wars and building tanks with five reverse gears and only one forward gear (that was a joke by the way!)
When it comes to progressive Rock, Italian groups have the full set of forward gears,and have a habit of engaging reverse only when they have achieved a debut album. I like the way they both fight wars and make Prog Rock.
Controversial point:Best Food in europe too.
Straight outta Florence,this album has to be in the top five 'Best Woprock' (thank you snoopy!)albums ever list. I award it five white flags out of five for its musicianly excellence.....and oh yeah, its got a Mellotron on it!

Tracklist:

A1 Primo Tempo 8:10
A2 Secondo Tempo 3:20
A3 Terzo Tempo 6:20
A4 Quarto Tempo 3:15
B1 Quinto Tempo 5:58
B2 Sesto Tempo 5:12
B3 Settimo Tempo 8:28


Sunday, 8 September 2019

Il Balletto Di Bronzo ‎– "Ys" (Polydor ‎– 2448 003) 1972



Thats enough German Prog, aka Krautrock.Far too much has been written about it and frankly,the whole concept bores me.
Now Italy embraced Prog more than any other country,and still do. No moaning about how the musical ability of the musicians excluded the ordinary man,just an appreciation of Intelligent rock composition. For christs's sake Van Der Graff Generator are Pop Stars over there to this day, selling out stadia,and getting number one albums, while we in the UK are fawning over idiots like Kanye West and other twats like that, of which i have no memory of for my own mental safety.
Whereas German prog was a roughed up kind of progressive rock, the emphasis in Italy was on melody and musicianship, something I usually sneer at, in an anglo-american outfit as is.Its anglo-american cultures role to move on and be progressive in discovering 'new' directions, and leave it to others to take it to a logical conclusion after the fickle British public have tired of it. So if King Crimson and Van Der Graff stopped doing rock as we knew it around 1975, the Italians didn't, and developed their own brand of symphonic rock with a barbed edge........I dunno what i'm talking about really, but I do love this shit.
So, here I start with my personal fav Italian Prog, or dare I call it 'Wop Prog',or, "Prog Wop"?
I present the complex and powerful Symphonic Prog masterpiece that is "Ys", by Il Balletto Di Bronzo.
There is not a single unconsidered quaver in the carefully-composed songwriting, not a percussive flam or synthesizer knob-twist that isn't deliberate and functional; these are some of the most arranged arrangements I've ever heard.Free Rock improvisation this is most definitely NOT!Its got a Mellotron on it too......, what more do you want?
I also like the fact that I don't know what the fuck they are singing about.....and I don't wanna know either.
They looked good too:
Young men are you watching?This is how to dress!!!

Tracklist:


A1 Introduzione
A2 Primo Incontro
B1 Secondo Incontro
B2 Terzo Incontro
B3 Epilogo


DOWNLOAD larks tongues in ass wop not spick HERE! (terrible link title,but one trys)

Saturday, 7 September 2019

Kluster ‎– "Klopfzeichen" (Schwann AMS Studio ‎– ams-studio 511) 1971


Like having your teeth extracted without aneasthetic by Irma Grese ,"The Hyena Of Auschwitz"......why do they give these creatures such ridiculous stage names, as if its some Psychopaths royal variety performance?....
Or being kicked to death by Ilsa Koch....here we go again!..."The Bitch of Buchenwald"; the Female narrator's voice sounds like an announcement at a railway station in nazi occupied Poland, Treblinka central for example. You can almost imagine the translated version saying stuff like, 'Women and children to the right, Men to the left, old and disabled report to the shower block immeadiately for delousing'.But she's probably just talking about puppy dogs for all I know.
Anyhow,I'd be running to the showers if she told me to do it, and voluntering for extra Zyklon B to inhale.....mmmmmmm luverly discipline.
Alternatively this could be the theme to one of Berlusconi's Bunga Bunga parties....both are equally horrific,and only a truly sick pervert's idea of good clean Kinky fun.

Oh, just let me have my fun will ya!?

The music has nothing to do with resettlement in the East for special treatment, or Bunga Bunga sex parties, its a verified prototype for Industrial Music, five years before Throbbing Gristle or Cabaret Voltaire 'created' the genre in the UK.

Tracklist:

A Kluster 1 (Electric Music) Und Texte
[Sprecherin] – Christa Runge 24:00
B Kluster 2 (Electric Music) 21:51


Friday, 6 September 2019

Kluster ‎– "Zwei-Osterei" (Schwann AMS Studio ‎– ams studio 512) 1971


Oh Shiiiiiiit!....Just hearing the voice of Manfred Paethe, as a teutonic version of Larry Olivier doing Richard the Third,but in the Gestapo. Gives me waking nightmares of being interrogated by a psychopath with the backing of the state. This is the music ,or more accurately Non-Music, that plays as you wait for electrodes to be applied to your balls,or the hammer on the inside of your knee,before they dunk your head in the bath of shit.......but you don't know anything! Not that knowing something will save you of course. Such is the power of the German language,to send shivvers down the spine,and hair stand on end,even on my bald head, in sheer terror!
The music/Non-Music, is the essence of the scraping violins from Hitchcocks "Psycho", but slowed down to a grating crawl,like a slowly inserting knife in the liver.The voice, that Voice, is the blade twisting.
Is this the very first Industrial album?....I reckon it is,or its sister album "Klopfzeichen",whichever was released first.
Its beyond merely Avant Garde, its Avant Industrial.Recording the noise of the modern planet and feeding its horror back at us.
Krautrock this is not, but it gets lumped in there with Guru Guru as the same stuff,that German Stuff. Like all the Kosmiche musick,it ain't nothing to do with Rock whatsoever.
After another couple of official albums in 1971, Konrad Schnitzler went solo, and the remaining two (Mobeius,and Roedelius) changed the 'K' to a 'C' and became ambient legends Cluster.Three people who have,possibly, never made a (s)hit record......shiiiiit!

Tracklist:

A Electric Music Und Text
[Sprecher] – Manfred Paethe 22:50
B Kluster 4 22:09


Thursday, 5 September 2019

Guru Guru ‎– "UFO" (Ohr ‎– OMM 56 005) 1970



Probably my favourite Kraut Freak-out album from Rocks golden era is "UFO",This is how to abuse an electric guitar,whilst walking a delicate line between control and chaos,with a loose but tight rhythm unit rumbling along behind the electric storm clouds of Ax Genrich.
The sister of a now deceased German friend of mine, Uli, who looked not unlike a member Guru Guru; told me at his funeral, that Mani Neumeier  (the drummer of Guru Guru)once suggested that she have sex with him.A request to which, she understandably refused vigorously.Looking at the band pictures its a wonder any of these Free Rock legends got laid at all.
From this peak,they slowly decended that well trodden down escalator to Jazz Rock Hell.

Tracklist:

A1 Stone In 5:42
A2 Girl Call 6:15
A3 Next Time See You At The Dalai Lhama 6:10
B1 Ufo 10:15
B2 Der LSD-Marsch 8:25