Prognosis

I was busy with another project (building a guitar) and didn’t have any ideas until last night when I went through the library and started pulling tunes. Even then, it doesn’t always work, and I admit I’ve spent days tinkering with the sequence. Not this time.

I grew up with Yes, Genesis, King Crimson, ELP, and the rest.
None of them are featured here.
This is music I’m less familiar with than usual.
Most of it is from years of trolling blog sites for things I’d only read about in the past.

For example, Mogul Thrash is the band John Wetton left to join Family, before leaving them for King Crimson. I never expected to find it, but thanks to the internet, I have FLAC files.

I hope you like mellotron.

I tended towards shorter songs when possible. My favorite Genesis song, for instance, “Supper’s Ready” is a whole album side and clocks in over 20 minutes. Add “Close To The Edge”, and “Lark’s Tongues In Aspic Pt 1″, and there’s an entirely epic cd length mix.

The Italians really “got” Prog and some of the best bands were from there. “Impressioni Di Settembre”, an old favorite, was somewhat blandly re-recorded by PFM in english as “The World Became The World”, the title track to their second american release, but I’ve always preferred the original Italian version.

Also here is Il Volo, another of the best, represented by “Il Canto Della Preistoria (Molecule)”, which also transcends it’s lack of english with some truly extraordinary guitar sounds.

Amon Düül II is from Germany, and technically krautrock.

Aphrodite’s Child is from Greece, and features Vangelis, long before “Chariots Of Fire”.

Brian Davison was the drummer in the Nice. This 1970 solo album is nothing like his former band.

Tempest was a power trio freaturing Ollie Halsall, sadly best known for playing “Paul” on The Rutles recordings. He briefly joined this band, wrote all the songs, and sang lead on the album they recorded and left, to play with Kevin Ayers.

Bram Stoker is a band who left behind an album with nary a trace of other info. This is one of those that collectors go nuts for. Same goes for Pete Fine’s.

I only downloaded Aubrey Small a few days ago, and barely know “Smoker Will Blow”. This description caught my eye:
“The recording experience at Trident became intoxicating and at times even became somewhat surreal. For one number “Smoker Will Blow”(producer)John Anthony had the idea of putting orchestration on the track as it was too simple. Within a matter of days arranger Richard Hewson appeared together with a huge assembly of the finest jazz and orchestral musicians available. Here was another highly respected musician who had a list of high profile credits to his name including the Beatles, Bee Gees, Diana Ross, Art Garfunkel, Fleetwood Mac, Supertramp, Chris Rea among others – another who’s who! The band watched from the control room with amazement as an extraordinary and complex soundscape unfolded on their song”.

Kaleidoscope was an English band whose roots were in ’60′s psychedelia, and released some really exceptional music, but for some reason ended up with less than nothing. This song is the closer to an album they finished in 1971, but didn’t see release until 1992.

Prognosis

Prognosis Too

Enjoy!
-BBJ

I liked the new neck so much I regretted not doing a better job painting it, so I repainted with 20 coats of lacquer, and upgraded the pickguard. Now it’s finally finished. 1987 Fender Japan 50′s reissue body with Fender licensed USA made late ’60′s style neck. Tuners, and except for the ’90′s Les Paul humbucker, original hardware.

PFM

 
 
 

Bad Art

Bad Art

Somehow not as bad

Somehow not as bad

PFM were the epitome of Italian Prog Rock.
I bought these records back in the day. I heard “Celebration” on FM radio and was immediately hooked. I bought the album, “Photos Of Ghosts” in 1973. Since I regularly thumbed through the import racks at the local Licorice Pizza it wasn’t long until I found the imports, which I also bought. I have always preferred them to the English language versions, and apparently so did they, by firing the lyricist, Peter Sinfield,  not long after. He did get a little over-ripe sometimes. In 2000 I spent a month in Tokyo. I was housed at the Sofitel overlooking beautiful Ueno Park.

I had a pretty memorable experience with an earthquake as my hotel room was on the 18th floor. People were still buying cd’s back then, so the record stores were the absolute bomb. I bought these cd’s, plus other long lost prog rock favorites. This music has never ceased to float my boat.  Now, especially when I hear “Impression Di Settembre”, incredible Tokyo is evoked with my view from the 18th floor between tremors.  And the mini-bar.

Here’s wiki:
In early 1972, PFM released their first album, ”Storia di un minuto”. The album topped the Italian charts after only one week and was the first album by an Italian rock group to achieve this kind of success. It contained re-recorded versions of songs from the first single, as well as “È Festa” and “Dove… Quando…” which continue to be essential parts of their live concerts.

Later in 1972 saw the release of their second LP, ”Per un amico”. This album opened the way to broader audience recognition all across Europe. It featured a more sophisticated Multitrack recording|16-track production and allowed the group continue to refine their special combination of symphonic classical and traditional Italian musical influences in a rock context. Later, an English language version was re-recorded and re-mixed.

PFM came to the attention of Greg Lake of Emerson, Lake & Palmer during an Italian tour and PFM were signed to Manticore Records. The first album on Manticore, ”Photos of Ghosts” was released in late 1973. It contained mostly remakes of songs from ”Per un amico” in English. New lyrics (not translations) were written for the album by former King Crimson member Peter Sinfield, who also helped produce the re-recording and mixing at Advision Studios in London. ”Photos of Ghosts” was released all across Europe, Japan, and North America and represented the first real attempt by an Italian rock band to break into foreign markets. It was one of the first recordings by a European rock group to have significant chart success in the USA. The album also contained a new instrumental “Old Rain”, one song in Italian, “Il Banchetto” (“The Banquet”), as well as “Celebration (PFM song)|Celebration”, (a remake of “È Festa”) which received considerable airplay on album oriented rock stations in the U.S.A and Canada.

Impressioni Di Settembre

Per Un Amico

E Festa