Ltd. Andy Votel mix cassette.
Rare outtakes from early pioneering and controversial electronic jazz experiments presented on vinyl for the first time. This previously unpressed music provides and absolutely essential insight into Zen master experimental jazz outsider Don Cherry on the eve of his fertile Holy Mountain period which saw the composer combine all his well-travelled influences – such as the free music incubation of France and Germany with the traditional instrumentation of India, north and west Africa – then return to New York with a technicolor dream team and a healthy appetite for emerging synthesisers and electronic music. This project between electro-acoustic pioneer and Synclavier developer Jon Appleton coincided with his own history defining years at Dartmouth College where he played an integral part in the formation of one of Americas first electronic music institutions. Recording benchmark LPs for Folkways Records and Flying Dutchman Jon collaborated with Cherry to create the album Human Music which tested the boundaries of electronic sound, jazz and ethnological disciplines in a series of melodic and rhythmical interfaces that would polarise both musical tastes, pop politics and potential spiritual beliefs in the process.
Recorded in the exact same sessions at Bregman Electronic Music Studio, Dartmouth College, New Hampshire the two tracks Don and Jon did not appear on the Human Music LP and now show a glimpse of what future unisons might have bequeathed before both artists coincidentally re-located to Sweden to pursue their individual and very specific journeys into contemporary music. Released with the blessing and encouragement of Appleton himself this record is quite simply a treasure of a dream-combination from the early doors of genuine alternative popular music. These rare sides combine the creative technology that directly coincided with the dawn of Bob Moog’s and Don Buchla’s synthesiser revolution with the homecoming of outernational free jazz which, in tandem, spearheaded America’s most radical music developments in the subsequent two decades and beyond. Don/Jon and The Human Music sessions also prelude Cherry’s further imminent electronic positioning alongside Carla Bley and Don Preston (on Escalator Over The Hill) and in film soundtracks for Jean Rollin collaborator Jean-Noël Delamare and Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain (with Walter Sear) before a hiatus from the for almost a decade. This extra glimpse of that important era, at the hands of these two pioneers, is now available in this very special package.
“There was a time when the strength of a musician’s vision transcended all labels; here is a chance to dip into that pool again, and emerge not just refreshed, but alive again with the sense that we all can live in that world again, but most importantly raise the flag for excellence. Fantastic.”
An unholy grail of near mythical status finally joins the Finders Keepers Records discography in the form of this first-ever reissue of Masahiko Sato’s elusive sensual psychedelic free jazz score to the stunning Japanese witchcraft animation Belladonna Of Sadness (Kanashimi no Belladonna) directed by anime screenwriter Eiichi Yamamoto in 1973. An early feature-length example of a micro-genre in which Japanese anime producers collaborated with the “pink” film genre, Belladonna’s challenging occult, sexual and political subject matter was the cause of the film’s notoriety for many years, earning Yamamoto’s work a critical platform amongst some of the best counterculture animation films of the era such as La Planète Sauvage ( René Laloux/Roland T poor, France 1973), Marie Mathématique (Jean-Claude Forest, France 1967), Wizards (Ralph Bakshi, US 1977), Heavy Metal (Gerald Potterton, Canada 1980) and Time Masters (René Laloux/Moebius, France 1982). Drawing further stylistic similarities with Shuji Terayama/Tenjo Sajiki associated poster artist Aquirax Uno and the Hara-Kiri magazine cartoon strips Pravda/Jodelle by French artist Guy Peellaert, as well as the early flamboyant Klimtesque imagery of Jean Rollin collaborators Philippe Druillet and Nicolas Devil, Belladonna Of Sadness brought a strong European flavour to its sophisticated and stylish Japanese application which accentuated the French origins of the plot loosely based on accounts taken from the 1862 book La Sorcière (The Witch) by French historian Jules Michelet.
Over the last decade Belladonna Of Sadness has risen from the ashes and now shines brighter than ever. Now on the eve of its third or fourth global DVD release, fans no longer have to wait four months for third generation VHS telecine rubs from “that guy” in the States, or stuff their ambitious wish lists into the hands of any lucky friends visiting Tokyo in the summer. Belladonna has been used as nightclub projections by clued-up VJs and been restored by discerning feminist folk singers and improv bands while influencing illustrators, fashion designers and other creative types along the way.
Original copies of the soundtrack, however, are much less likely to rear their heads on a weekly basis, with prices literally doubling each time the original stock copies swap hands amongst the same Italian dealers at central European record fairs. Italian soundtracks are expensive anyway, but this one, as I’m sure you’ll agree, has got extra credentials. Finders Keepers Records, in direct collaboration with Sato himself, agree that this record should finally be liberated amongst those who know the magic words. With our decision to keep this album “strictly Sato” we removed a track – the main orchestral love theme by Asei Kobayashi and Mayumi Tachibana, which in all honesty is very much detached from Sato’s psychedelic soundtrack. Kept intact, however, are the songs sung and penned by Sato’s then wife Chinatsu Nakayama, including the track entitled TBFS (answers on a postcard?) that only appears on the master tapes and never actually made it to the theatrical cut of the film (although the theme is briefly alluded to, in different instrumentation, in a cut-scene available on the German DVD). This reissue project also marks the beginning of a longer intended relationship between Finders Keepers and Masahiko Sato, exploring his recorded work in both film music, jazz and avant garde composition.
David Bowie I’m Deranged (Edit) 2:38
–Trent Reznor Featuring Peter Christopherson Videodrones; Questions 0:44
–Nine Inch Nails The Perfect Drug 5:15
–Angelo Badalamenti Red Bats With Teeth 2:57
–Angelo Badalamenti Haunting & Heartbreaking 2:08
–The Smashing Pumpkins Eye 4:51
–Angelo Badalamenti Dub Driving 3:43
–Barry Adamson Mr. Eddy’s Theme 1 3:31
–Lou Reed This Magic Moment 3:23
–Barry Adamson Mr. Eddy’s Theme 2 2:13
–Angelo Badalamenti Fred & Renee Make Love 2:04
–Marilyn Manson Apple Of Sodom 4:26
–Antonio Carlos Jobim Insensatez 2:53
–Barry Adamson Something Wicked This Way Comes (Edit) 2:54
–Marilyn Manson I Put A Spell On You 3:30
–Angelo Badalamenti Fats Revisited 2:31
–Angelo Badalamenti Fred’s World 3:00
–Rammstein Rammstein (Edit) 3:26
–Barry Adamson Hollywood Sunset 2:01
–Rammstein Hierate Mich (Edit) 3:02
–Angelo Badalamenti Police 1:39
–Trent Reznor Driver Down 5:18
–David Bowie I’m Deranged (Reprise) 3:47
Unanimously considered amongst fans of all strains of alternative pop culture the flamboyant cinematic masterpiece known as Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Holy Mountain can proudly claim, amongst all its other accolades, one of fantastique cinema’s greatest red herrings of all time. In the interest of anti spoilerism we are not referring to the film’s reconstituted plot here (recycled from René Daumal’s 1952 fictitious mountaineering journal) but rather the film’s devious inverted end title sequence, a murky pond which harbours the true crimson fish that has quite frankly wasted record collectors time for over four bloody decades. The immortal, fatal, deviously distracting and plain EVIL strap line that reads “Forthcoming soundtrack available of Abkco Records and Tapes” has served a repeat menu of wild goose chase soup followed by red herring salad served in half a camouflaged curveball with a glass of muddied water in your own personal smoked screen booth for most of our adult lives. The gift that keeps on not giving. For those of us addicted to black plastic circles, if there was ever to be a sequel to The Holy Mountain then a two hour title card reading “we decided not to release the soundtrack to the original film” would have saved a lot of time, fingertip skin and want list paper and ink… In fact, in keeping with Jodorowsky’s grand vision for the film, this rug puller was (unbeknown to him) the final illusion.
If it wasn’t for Jodorowsky and Allan Klein’s thirty-something-year “temporary stand-off” (leading to release schedule cancellation) we might have already got over how amazing this soundtrack is. In fact, with all its quite unrequired Beatle connection hyperbole it might be in your old dad’s all-time favourite lists as the only token alternative/soundtrack/jazz record he ever bought, and you might have learned to hate it. But that never happened, and as the forbidden fruit idiom commands THIS IS NOW YOUR FAVOURITE LP OF ALL TIME AND YOU CANT LIVE WITHOUT IT.
So we need to write a press release. One which will sound like we are talking about seven different albums in one and for those that have seen the film, that will make perfect astrological sense. Where do we start? The unreleased soundtrack to the most fantastic transcendental spiritual cinematic explosion of our time? The lost Don Cherry album? The missing Jazz Composers Orchestra album featuring Charlie Haden, Carla Bley and Frank Lowe? The Elephant’s Memory soundtrack follow-up to Midnight Cowboy? The lost soundtrack album secretly funded and A&R’d by John Lennon and Yoko Ono? The music to the film that George Harrison was sacked from because he didn’t want us to see his butt hole? The orch rock LP made by the arranger of the collectable Mandrake Memorial prog pop LP? Walter Sears’ undiscovered studio experiments? The record that The Beatles’ managers didn’t want you to hear? The true axis between New York psych rock, free jazz and Swedish prog rock? All are relevant, all are true and all clearly outlined in liner notes exclusive to Finders Keepers’ bespoke vinyl pressing of this grail-trail double-slab of psychedelic vinyl film history. Featuring the original cues, composed-to-scene, and mastered from the original studio master tapes via Record Plant, A&R, Sear Sound and Electric Ladyland and housed in exclusive packaging based on one of the rarest European posters for the film’s original release.
This first edition also includes exclusive interviews and lost information from Neneh Cherry, Ronald Frangipane and the Swedish members of the original Don Cherry Holy Mountain line-up Bengt Berger and Christer Bothen alongside commendable quotes from Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) and Kieran Hebden (Four Tet). Alongside this release Finders Keepers, in collaboration with ABKCO will also present special vinyl editions of Jodorowsky’s other two Allen Klein produced films, El Topo and The Dance Of Reality, housed with the same unique design features and liner notes driven by the label’s long-term commitment to a project that has taken over a decade to release. The wait has been too long. Zoom back camera! Break the illusion and enjoy your salad.
Presented here as part of a dedicated series of Jodorowsky’s ABKCO film scores (alongside the previously unreleased The Holy Mountain and The Dance Of Reality), Finders Keepers bring you the score to the ultimate midnight movie and spiritual pseudo western an album that marks the exact pinprick where Alejandro Jodorowsky’s legacy first bled into the wider public consciousness. To affirm it’s 70′s rock credentials El Topo was originally imported by record producer Alan Douglas (Jimi Hendrix/The Last Poets/Miles Davis) then bought by American Beatles manager Allen Klein under the recommendation of John Lennon and Yoko Ono who shared enthusiasm with late night creatives like Dennis Hopper, Samuel Fuller and Don Cherry (who would later score The Holy Mountain). The acidic folk soundtrack was originally composed by Jodorowsky himself with his long-term Mexican collaborator Nacho Méndez with whom he had previously worked on the avant theatre production and LP H30. The following year Jodorowsky and Méndez’ short cues from the film’s production tapes were given to Ravi Shankar understudy (and George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass orchestrator) John Barnham to add extra score and post-production features making the lo-fi composed-to-scene themes into a viable commercial LP which would share release schedules with The Elephant’s Memory, Badfinger and Mary Hopkins – standing out like a sore thumb in a sea of well manicured talons.
Taken from the original master tapes of engineer Brian Humphries (Black Sabbath/Pink Floyd) and presented with new artwork based on the rare European and South American poster artwork for the film’s original release with exclusive sleevenotes form Andy Votel and actress/director (and Jodorowsky friend/collaborator) Asia Argento this release is an essential companion piece to Finders Keepers exclusive Jodorowsky series and an enthralling and pop culturally significant release in its own right.
Grave robbing, torture, possessed nuns, and a satanic Sabbath:Benjamin Christensen‘s legendary 1922 silent film Häxan uses a series of dramatic vignettes to explore the scientific hypothesis that the witches of the Middle Ages suffered the same hysteria as turn-of-the-century psychiatric patients. But the film itself is far from serious; instead, it’s a witches’ brew of the scary, gross, and darkly humorous. In 1968, Antony Balch prepared an abbreviated 77-minute version of the film titledWitchcraft Through the Ages. Balch had previously worked with William S. Burroughs in making the films Towers Open Fire (1963) and The Cut-Ups (1967), and this version features Burroughs’ dramatic narration, delivered as an incantation in droning monotone. Daniel Humair‘s chaotic jazz score for the ’68 release was played by a quintet that included Jean-Luc Ponty on violin and Humair on percussion. The artwork features stills from the film.
With track titles translating to Song For The Devil and The Witches, Francois Tusques’ rarest commercially released LP casts an early stylistic premonition of the vampire themed improvised soundtracks recorded for director Jean Rollin merely months after its release. Assembling the very same group of musical sorcerers this albums personnel (featuring, amongst others, soprano saxophonist Barney Wilen) reads like a who’s who of France’s early improvised music/free jazz scene resulting in a wholly unique European flavour while preserving the essence of other global inter communal travellers such as Don Cherry and Krzysztof Komeda.
Originally extracted from three separate recording sessions in early 1967, Le Nouveau Jazz opens with themes conjured up for the short film Coda by French jazz documentarist Marc Pauly highlighting the composers adept ability in his multi-disciplined art further aligning him with the aforementioned pioneers. The rest of the album combines frenzied macabre picture music (akin to Detroit’s Wendell Harrison) and emotive piano improvisations (Mal Waldron anyone?) with the sui generis inclusion of a double double bass formation courtesy of Bernard “Beb” Guerin (Sonny Sharrock/Kühn Brothers) and Jean-Francois Jenny Clarke (Enrico Rava/Giorgio Gaslini). As Tusques’ second official album (after the seldom sighted Free Jazz from 1965) this LP expands on this important French musicians vision and follows up Cacophonic’s repress of his mega rare Don Cherry art installation collaboration from 1964 this time introducing extra rhythmic arrangements courtesy of Italian drummer Aldo Romano (Robin Kenyatta).
Housed in the elegant original Witches artwork sleeve by comic illustrator Jean Vern with French liner notes by French psychiatry/beat poet/crime fiction writer Yves Buin this worthy reissue hopes to find a unique uninhabited part of your collection from an era that changed the Parisian underground prior to the important developments of labels like BYG Actuel and Futura Records in the early 1970s.
This record represents the first opportunity for an Italian jazz composer and arranger to express himself with complete freedom. Up to now it seems to me that Italian jazz has been focused almost entirely on the figure of the soloist, with the obvious result that – when they adopt American themes and arrangements – the Italian version pales in comparison with the original. On the other hand, when the execution is left entirely to the imagination of the musician, it’s inevitable that for the duration of the record we are entirely at the mercy of the variable quality of the soloist’s inspiration. So, what better setting for a jazz musician than a new arrangement of the original, supporting him in the solos and alternating the ensemble writing with individual improvisation? It helps him coordinate his ideas, develop them – and catch his breath! Jazz today is going through a particularly happy period, both commercially and stylistically. It seems to be back to the golden age of swing! With the end of the long period of renewal, controversy and research – ranging from the first bop to the Cool of Tristano and the experiments of Kenton – musicians today are living in a period of intense creative activity. They are working in a language that, while it doesn’t ignore the teachings of modern symphonic music, puts more emphasis on the eternal fundamentals of jazz – rhythm, swing and modality. Even in these arrangements I tried to express myself in a way which was contemporary but classic, without experimental pretensions, focusing on a good sound and effective rhythm. The pieces, all written by me and arranged especially for this recording, were performed on March 25th and 27th, 1957. The theme of Da Roma a New York (‘From Rome to New York’) is played first by the sax, then repeated by the bass and trombone in unison, then repeated again with the trumpet playing a contrapuntal counter-melody. In the riff, the theme is taken up by the horns, playing a fourth higher. In the second refrain the rhythmic idea of the fifth bar of the theme is developed in a new key, and supports the tenor’s improvisation. The second refrain returns to the original theme, picking up the key of the riff and developing freely, ‘in divertimento’. After a brief alto solo, the trumpet improvises, accompanied by the entire brass section. A contrapuntal progression starts from the bass and reaches the trumpet, leading eventually to the baritone solo which closes this fourth refrain. Back to the initial phrase after a very short interlude, here there is an inversion for that with trumpet and contralto playing the theme while tenor and baritone contrast it. In La fanciulla dai Capelli di Nylon (‘The Girl with the Nylon Hair’, a play on Claude Debussy’s ‘The Girl with the Flaxen Hair’), the clarinet rephrases the well known prelude written by Debussy, performing a melodic pattern of blues, which after a solo progression is played in ensemble by the whole brass section. It is important to notice how the trumpet’s improvisation following the 24 bar long exposition is incredibly well blended with the other instruments and constitutes a complex but homogeneous whole. Eventually the fragment of the theme played by the baritone is joined by the trombone, tenor and then contralto. And then the trumpet as well. Soraya is a slow ballad with two refrains, the first one revealed in ensemble, while the second features the contralto (with variations) and the piano. At the end we return to the initial fragment of the theme. Blues for Tony Sciacca is dedicated to the amazing Tony Scott, whose real name reveals his undeniably Italian origin. The two clarinets mutually alternate in exposing the theme as the classic canon requires. The score is played identically at the end, with a few instrumental variations: the trumpet and contralto play in unison the part of the first clarinet while the tenors play the second one (not the trombonist in this part). In Kon-Tiki the counterpoint of the sax and trombone creates a vaguely South American rhythm that accompanies the trumpet, which presents the theme. The second refrain displays several unison sections and after riffing improvisation by the contralto and the trumpet, the initial theme is played again. I think that the style of jazz we are playing nowadays has a characteristic quality distinct from the first wave of Cool: the re-evaluation of vital elements of vintage jazz. Rather than looking far and wide for new inspirations, like chamber music of the 18th century, twelve-tone technique, or Cuban folklore, here today we recall the authentic tradition, going back to the roots of our music. And since in jazz nothing is more jazz than the blues, here’s a new set of blues in the style of Shorty Rogers. Vasi a Samo (‘Vessels to Samos’ – the Italian equivalent of ‘Coals to Newcastle’; the implication being of something taken to where it is least needed) belongs to this set. The theme, played by the piano and then by unison saxes, goes through a series of variations and solos until it is reprised by the horn section, first as a canon and then together in harmony. The playful title of the piece was suggested to me by the fact that this LP was intended by RCA, not so much for the Italian public, but for the American market, which seems to me to be “Bringing coals to Newcastle”! On Canzonetta (‘Jingle’) I experimented with some smooth counterpoint effects based on the slow melodic line. The tenor resumes the riff solo, with the intervention of the piano breaking the monotone of the brass. Sic et simpliciter (‘Simply So’) is the perfect model of a harmonic progression: I deliberately avoided any melodic idea, even during the riff which is built with predominantly rhythmic elements based on a progression of high chords. The theme, as introduced by the piano in the first refrain, is then played by the horns in the last one. In Aria di danza (‘Air Dance’) it is the melodic idea stated at the outset by the trombone which sets the whole piece in motion. The riff indeed is the same phrase, with variations at the end played by the trumpet in the key of the subdominant. Le sette virtù (‘The Seven Virtues’) – that’s the name I wanted to give to the final composition of this set, built on the harmony of a well known American ballad (very commonly used, since the time of bop). But instead, since the piece is dedicated to its seven soloists, I jokingly suggested a change of title. So here we have I Sette Peccati (‘The Seven Deadly Sins’): these names are well known in the highest reaches of Italian jazz and need no introduction. Who among fans doesn’t know Giulio Libano (trumpet player, later arranger and conductor of Chet Baker’s sessions in Milan), Glauco Masetti (alto sax and clarinet), Eraldo Volontè (tenor sax and clarinet), Mario Midana (trombonist, who later worked with Armando Trovajoli’s orchestra), Sandro Bagalini (baritone sax, bass clarinet, clarinet, tenor sax), Alceo Guatelli (double bassist and later a distinguished composer) and Gilberto ‘Gil’ Cuppini (drummer), for their many concerts, frequent recordings and radio broadcasts? Some of them are themselves leaders of orchestras, for instance Masetti, Volontè, Cuppini – the latter has recorded a LP which has also been released in the USA on RCA Victor – Around the World in Jazz : Italy by Gil Cuppini and his Stars. All my gratitude to them for their friendly and willing collaboration, which was essential for the success of these recordings. A special thank goes to the maestro Alberto Angelini who supervised the recordings, made in Milan for RCA Italiana. Piero Umiliani
Back on vinyl from POPPYDISC is SUN RA’s first album in his NYC period, full of melodicism, exotica percussion, and a lighthearted feel. Produced by TOM WILSON (DYLAN, ZAPPA, VELVETS) and originally released on SAVOY in 1961, this sonic adventure is as bizarre and random as the cover art.
Limited Edition colored vinyl for Record Store Day 2014
- 5 LPs including the 3 original LPs from Malagasy and 2 LPs previously unreleased
- 7″ single of the super-rare $1000-rated 45 that was only released in Madagascar in the early ’70s
- Booklet with previously-unpublished photographs and liner notes featuring interviews from members of Malagasy. Notes are in English and French.
- Free download card for 320kbps MP3 files of all tracks
- Limited to 500 copies only
As well as spending his days (and nights) composing, recording, producing, arranging and performing, part of Gilson’s life involved the study and exploration of music, and in the late 1960s his curiosity led him to the ex-French colony of Madagascar, the island just off the south eastern coast of Africa. Indeed, Gilson was fascinated by all kinds of music, not just jazz, and his thirst for musical knowledge led him to make several trips to Madagascar not only to study the indigenous music, but also to spread his passion for jazz. His absorption of Malagasy culture and the strength of his personality would eventually result in the release of 3 exceptional albums of Malagasy jazz, as well as a string of Malagasy concerts, events and radio shows performed across France. Here we present in their entirety all 3 of these albums, as well as 2 further albums of previously unreleased Malagasy material, in an attempt to address the profound contribution that Gilson and Malagasy have made to world jazz. THE MUSIC Early experiments in Ethnic Jazz created as a direct result of Jef Gilson’s expedition to Madagascar in 1969. Three LPs of super rare Malagasy jazz restored and available again for the first time in 40 years. Two LPs of unheard and previously unissued Afro-Spiritual jazz. An impossibly rare 7” single made available for the first time ever outside Madagascar. *** If vinyl isn’t your thing we have a 4CD set also available. In keeping with RSD rules the set will be available in selected RSD stores on 19 April, and if any copies are left they will be available one week later in other stores and online.
This is the beautiful unreleased British jazz score to the classic Anthony Newley ’60s Soho underworld thriller. Recorded in 1963 and never issued, the master tape was discovered in the loft of Kenny Graham‘s daughter’s home by Jonny Trunk. Don’t ask what he was doing up there, but he found the tape. Little is known about this jazz score, apart from the fact that it comes from one of the great early ’60s London movies, and was written and performed by one of the more important jazz mavericks of modern times. Kenny Graham was a jazz musician like no other. He’d formed an Afro Cuban band in the early 1950s, made an album of Moondog covers in 1957 (Moondog and Suncat Suites), been commissioned for advertising music, library music, jazz compositions and film scores, too. But he got little in return, so he’d turned his back on music by the late ’60s, never to write or perform again. A true maverick and simply too far ahead of the jazz crowd to get noticed, this charming little score demonstrates just what a great composer he really was. The opening theme alone is one of the more sublime, early morning jazz numbers you could ever wish to hear. Available here for the first time ever on vinyl. The vinyl will probably sell out really fast and get stuck back on the market by those horrid record flippers for about four times the price.
review coming soon…
review coming soon…