Tony Coulter once more every-here, with further LPs to present you: some for the sounds, and some for the covers. All but one of the sound-sampled discs were found recently here in Portland, OR; those present in cover only have mostly been around much longer, and -- excepting two -- found their way onto FMU's airwaves at some point. (Use the station's dandy-handy playlist search if hear them you must.)
And now, my friends: Follow me!
Harvey's People: Loving & Living: The Songs of Sister Estelle (Galliard, 1969) LP
Let us commence with a Catholic folk record from the U.K., featuring the compositions of Carmelite nun Sister Estelle. Unlikely as it may seem, several tracks on the disc have a lovely folk psych sound -- even if that was most likely not what the good sister had in mind.
A Harvey's Person:
The Brethren: The Brethren (New Life Records, 1972?) LP
Keeping with the people of the book, we turn next to a more brooding but still quite beautiful tune from a Seattle-based band of hippies-for-Christ.
Behold the Book:
Ellis and Lynch: Life Is You (Ra-O Records, 1976) LP
Catholics again -- and brooding again ... and from Seattle as well. This quartet, consisting of Ron and Nancy Ellis, together with Mike and Collene Lynch, put out six LPs during the '70s, of which this is the third. The cut I've selected is definitely the stand-out track from this particular album (the only I've heard), as the others are a bit too perkily wholesome for my liking. Note the groovy ARP synth washes.
You are Life and ...
Forest Green: Forest Green (Capitol Records, 1973) LP
Closing the book on the people of the book, we turn next a Philadelphia prog/jazz rock septet, whose sole album was produced by Harry Palmer, member of Ford Theatre -- and uncle of R. Stevie Moore. (On a side note: R. Stevie's early albums appeared on H.P. Records ... i.e., Harry Palmer Records.) The cut I've chosen is the sole instrumental, and has a lovely neoclassical sound that puts me in mind of bands like Julverne or ZNR.
Seven trees had the Forest Green:
The New Barbarians: 2 + 2 = 4 (Toucan Records, 1987) LP
Turn your attention now to a sublimely odd record from Wisconsin band The New Barbarians -- who have the misfortune of sharing a name with some kind of horrid Rolling Stones offshoot. The boys from Cudahy, Wisconsin -- unlike Keith and Ron -- specialize in a fetching brand of synth-heavy avant retardedness that I find quite endearing, if also a little befuddling. Sometimes two plus two does equal four, I guess.
The trademarked toucan:
Cham-Ber Huang: A Breath-Taking Harmonica Performance (Insignia Records, 195?) LP
Next up is an intriguing album featuring harmonica virtuoso Cham-Ber Huang in duets with Danish accordionist Mogens Ellegaard. Huang, who emigrated from Shanghai in 1950, is quite a sensitive player and manages to make harmonica arrangements of classical pieces sound completely natural -- no easy trick. Ellegaard was likewise an excellent musician, and in later years went on to record a great deal of experimental music, by the likes of Per Norgaard and Arne Nordheim. I've given you Huang and Ellegaard's fine performance of Bela Bartok's Roumanian Folk Dances, composed in 1915.
Various Artists: Stimme des Volkes (SDV Tontrager, 1990) LP
Let's close the musical portion of this post with two cuts from a 1990 compilation released by the German SDV Tontrager label. The first is by the Dusseldorf duo The Bad Examples, who went on to have releases on the great Ata Tak label (founded in 1979 by Der Plan). The second is by the Belgian band Human Flesh, one of many manifestations of the genius of Alain Neffe (also of Bene Gesserit and Pseudo Code, among others). On the off-chance that anyone could possibly care about such minutia, I'll just mention that the name I gave my last FMU show was a play on the title of Human Flesh's 1985 album The 35th Human Attempt.
The Bad Examples:
The Wizard: The Wizard (The Money Machine, 1980) LP
All Nassau County Junior High School Orchestra - Chorus - Stage Band: 1982 (Silver Crest, 1982) LP
Desert Pete: The Lost Oasis (Landschooner Records, 1978) LP
Art: Glenn Peters
The Teardrops: Manhattan Special Proudly Presents the Fabulous Teardrops (Manhattan Special Records, 197?) LP
Art: Paul (Teardrop) Ciaurella
Charles Hammond: Drama in Song: Ten New Hits (Hammond Records, 1979) LP
Stich II Band: So Be It (Approval Records, 1988) LP
Art: Hermann Stampfel
Shirley & Company: Shame Shame Shame (Vibration Records, 1975) LP
Art: J. Kaliff
Edwin Ramirez: Poesias (Lira Records, 197?) LP
Oleg Konstantinov's Russian Choir: Folk & Classical Songs (no label, 1975?) LP
Art: Nicolas Mischkinis
Bob Cross: To Grandma with Love (Leprechaun Records, 196?) LP
Art: Don Sellers