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Thread: Canterbury Binge: 2021

  1. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Udi Koomran View Post
    What do you guys think of this
    One of my fave compilations of all time, Udi - but which track are you talking about?
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
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  2. #27
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    One of my fave compilations of all time, Udi - but which track are you talking about?
    ^What he said. Anyway, definitely one of the greatest albums ever, compilation or not.

  3. #28
    It just occurred to me that I still don't have that first Egg album. Is it worth grabbing? I've got Polite Force and Civil Surface, but never heard the debut for some reason...

    Anyway, now on to some Caravan. If I Could Do It All Over Again was the first one I ever got, and it's still one of my faves.

  4. #29
    ^ The debut Egg is fairly Ok for "what it is", and it's got a couple of great tracks on it - but do not in any way expect the complete onslaught of innovative ideas and solutions presented on The Polite Force.

    The obvious adolescent spirit and vibe of vintage Canterbury is most certainly present in tunes like "I Will Be Absorbed" and "While Growing My Hair", but significant parts of the lengthy "Symphony No. 2" showcase some of the absolutely most dated traits of vintage "classical rock crossover" and shouldn't be bothered with.

    You'll probably still need the album for side 1 and some of side 2, though.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  5. #30
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Yep, I agree with Scroteyboy. Its my least fav of the three studios, with of course Polite Force being the gem of gems, but its worth some spins and is a necessary addition to any Canterbury freaks library. Its Dave Stewart...he is always worth a listen or 978. Plus Monty and Clivey.

  6. #31
    ^ Thanks Ricky and Frankie! I had a feeling this might be something I should own, but thought I'd ask anyway. Plus, I'm always interested in hearing your insights.

    So I will grab it, with the foreknowledge that it's not likely to eclipse Polite Force or Civil Surface. Right now I've got "Long Piece No. 3" playing over my stereo system in the living room. "Newport Hospital" has got to be one of the finest things ever made by anyone. I do love some Dave Stewart. Mont and Clive are great too of course.

  7. #32
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    The first Egg album is amazing as the work of a couple of 18-year-olds and their 19-year-old drummer friend. But I concur, "The Polite Force" is where they become a GREAT band.

    Then again, that's also my opinion of Caravan and lots of people seem to think their 1st was as great as their 2nd, so to each his own, I guess.
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  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by calyx View Post
    The first Egg album is amazing as the work of a couple of 18-year-olds and their 19-year-old drummer friend. But I concur, "The Polite Force" is where they become a GREAT band.

    Then again, that's also my opinion of Caravan and lots of people seem to think their 1st was as great as their 2nd, so to each his own, I guess.
    I think Caravan's 'greatness' leap between albums 1 and 2 is even more pronounced than with Egg, personally. I'm a big fan of that debut Egg, and it needs a-listenin' quite soon round here!
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  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    ^ The debut Egg is fairly Ok for "what it is", and it's got a couple of great tracks on it - but do not in any way expect the complete onslaught of innovative ideas and solutions presented on The Polite Force.
    What ol’ Scrotum said.
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  10. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by aith01 View Post
    I've got "Long Piece No. 3" playing over my stereo system in the living room.
    You know, there used to be a review of The Polite Force available from Classic Rock which I think awarded the album two out of six or five (possible) stars and kept arguing from the logical angle that it somehow attempted but didn't succeed in overdoing stuff like "Tarkus". Meaning that the review in essence assumes that this is one of the record's main objectives; to reach that equivalent level of aestehtic impact and form.

    But truth is it's constructed from a wholly other set of artistic ideals, those of complete non-binary presumptions of structure and dynamic. It builds further on the avant-garde aspirations of Soft Machine's Volume Two in actually deeming transcendence of not only substance matter but expectation of possibility. And so it essentially works wonders, being one of the earliest through-composed rock records of overarching, conceptual dissonance. And it's basically all there; detailed frictions in harmony and rhythm, melodic contrast, breaches in timbre and instrumentation and so on. And all seemingly pointless from the view of a "rational" craft in songwriting.

    To me, discovering this was an absolute turning point in awakenings as regards the potential of "seriousness" in progressive rock music. It made all the difference.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  11. #36
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    So, I don't often fling terms like 'perfect album' (or the garishly overused 'masterpiece') around (indeed, numerous personal favourites are not without flaws), but if such things do exist, surely Wyatt's Rock Bottom is at or near the top of the list. Seriously, it's just sheer, unmitigated (even unbridled!) perfection to my ears. I never tire of it, I always hear something new in it (it looks different every time it comes from the foam-crested brine), and I'm always so glad to have chosen it for a spin when the opening notes ring out. There's no such thing as turning it off midway or cherry picking tunes. This is beauty in its purest form. It means as much to me as Godbluff does, and in my estimation that is some high-ass praise.

    But yeah, Rock Bottom. Perfection. (Can you tell I just listened to it?)

    Quiet Sun is up next... and although that's a killer record in its own right, it won't hit me on quite the emotional level that ol' Bobby W. does (that's what his friends and I call him).
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  12. #37
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Progatron View Post
    So, I don't often fling terms like 'perfect album' (or the garishly overused 'masterpiece') around (indeed, numerous personal favourites are not without flaws), but if such things do exist, surely Wyatt's Rock Bottom is at or near the top of the list. Seriously, it's just sheer, unmitigated (even unbridled!) perfection to my ears. I never tire of it, I always hear something new in it (it looks different every time it comes from the foam-crested brine), and I'm always so glad to have chosen it for a spin when the opening notes ring out. There's no such thing as turning it off midway or cherry picking tunes. This is beauty in its purest form. It means as much to me as Godbluff does, and in my estimation that is some high-ass praise.

    But yeah, Rock Bottom. Perfection. (Can you tell I just listened to it?)

    Quiet Sun is up next... and although that's a killer record in its own right, it won't hit me on quite the emotional level that ol' Bobby W. does (that's what his friends and I call him).
    Rock Bottom could have pages written on it. Truth be told I was not loving it after my first spin. I was more impressed with Soft Machine with Wyatt during my virgin Canterbury years, but once it hit me it hit hard. Absolute masterpiece to my ears. Heard the North Sea Radio Orchestra version? Love it! Glad you dig this one

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    Truth be told I was not loving it after my first spin.
    That's where I'm at. I'll revisit when the mood strikes.
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  14. #39
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  15. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    One of my fave compilations of all time, Udi - but which track are you talking about?
    Does this seem to have some Canterbury aromas for you ?


  16. #41
    I love the first Egg, and for me it is an absolutely essential work for the Canterbury gallery. Its sonics, the wealth of ideas and inventiveness, the exploratory spirit of the musicians makes this one of the best and most advanced albums of 1970.

    Of course Egg is a much more accomplished band in Polite Force, but this is not an argument against the debut.

  17. #42
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    That's where I'm at. I'll revisit when the mood strikes.
    Moe...you should try the NSRO version I was talking about. The arrangement and performance is just phenomenal and it shines a different light on the compositions and overall vibe.

    https://youtube.com/playlist?list=OL...H8nWcrdjZqfxGQ

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by calyx View Post
    The first Egg album is amazing as the work of a couple of 18-year-olds and their 19-year-old drummer friend. But I concur, "The Polite Force" is where they become a GREAT band.

    Then again, that's also my opinion of Caravan and lots of people seem to think their 1st was as great as their 2nd, so to each his own, I guess.
    The difference for me is that the Caravan debut doesn't sound especially derivative and the Egg one does. (Although Caravan's debut is poorly mixed and Egg's isn't!) Egg's debut album is definitely worth having but to my ears, lands somewhere between The Nice and Arthur Brown. The Polite Force is their peak for me...a much more sophisticated album.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    I love the first Egg, and for me it is an absolutely essential work for the Canterbury gallery. Its sonics, the wealth of ideas and inventiveness, the exploratory spirit of the musicians makes this one of the best and most advanced albums of 1970.

    Of course Egg is a much more accomplished band in Polite Force, but this is not an argument against the debut.
    I’m with you regarding the first Egg. I love it and personally prefer it to Civil Surface (by a wide margin). Polite is tops but love the raw energy on the first one.

  20. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    ^ never knew that existed...cheers.

    The Soft Works-live double album is brand new!

  21. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by calyx View Post
    The first Egg album is amazing as the work of a couple of 18-year-olds and their 19-year-old drummer friend. But I concur, "The Polite Force" is where they become a GREAT band.

    Then again, that's also my opinion of Caravan and lots of people seem to think their 1st was as great as their 2nd, so to each his own, I guess.
    Quote Originally Posted by Progatron View Post
    I think Caravan's 'greatness' leap between albums 1 and 2 is even more pronounced than with Egg, personally. I'm a big fan of that debut Egg, and it needs a-listenin' quite soon round here!
    Very interesting takes on this, regarding the Caravan comparisons and the leaps in quality between albums 1 and 2. I'm on my way over to Wayside to order that first Egg album now. It's nice to still have a little bit of Egg music left to discover still.


    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    You know, there used to be a review of The Polite Force available from Classic Rock which I think awarded the album two out of six or five (possible) stars and kept arguing from the logical angle that it somehow attempted but didn't succeed in overdoing stuff like "Tarkus". Meaning that the review in essence assumes that this is one of the record's main objectives; to reach that equivalent level of aestehtic impact and form.

    But truth is it's constructed from a wholly other set of artistic ideals, those of complete non-binary presumptions of structure and dynamic. It builds further on the avant-garde aspirations of Soft Machine's Volume Two in actually deeming transcendence of not only substance matter but expectation of possibility. And so it essentially works wonders, being one of the earliest through-composed rock records of overarching, conceptual dissonance. And it's basically all there; detailed frictions in harmony and rhythm, melodic contrast, breaches in timbre and instrumentation and so on. And all seemingly pointless from the view of a "rational" craft in songwriting.

    To me, discovering this was an absolute turning point in awakenings as regards the potential of "seriousness" in progressive rock music. It made all the difference.
    Wow, talk about a review missing the mark... Whoever wrote it, they must have been pretty clueless if they were comparing it to Tarkus and deducting points because it somehow didn't surpass it, IMO. Did ELP ever do something like "Boilk"?

    Hearing The Polite Force for the first time was eye-opening for me. Like Soft Machine, it was so different from what I had often considered "progressive rock" in the past, with different intentions even.

  22. #47
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Soft Machine Vol. 2....probably my fav studio SM...amazing. I was diggin Wyatt's drum solo in 7/8 that is largely played on his cymbals. Love this album so much.

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    Soft Machine Vol. 2....probably my fav studio SM...amazing. I was diggin Wyatt's drum solo in 7/8 that is largely played on his cymbals. Love this album so much.
    Oh yes indeedy-do. A classic. Man, every time I read this thread I want to dive into every album mentioned... there aren't enough hours in the day though. I'm smack dab in the middle of two reviews simultaneously and getting ready to move at the end of January. Ugh.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk

  24. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    Rock Bottom could have pages written on it. Truth be told I was not loving it after my first spin. I was more impressed with Soft Machine with Wyatt during my virgin Canterbury years, but once it hit me it hit hard. Absolute masterpiece to my ears. Heard the North Sea Radio Orchestra version? Love it! Glad you dig this one
    Rock Bottom is definitely one of those discs that has grown on me over time. I have pretty much always loved "Sea Song" (and every time I also bring up the lovely cover version by Tears For Fears), but it took me a little bit of time to appreciate the rest. I love it now of course, but somehow it tends to get forgotten when I'm reaching for something Canterburian. I'm gonna rectify that tonight though. Maybe even some Ruth/Richard, even though that might not be Canterbury technically...

    Right now I've got a glass of red wine and In the Land of Grey and Pink is currently playing. What a great record this is.

  25. #50
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    Soft Machine Vol. 2....probably my fav studio SM...amazing. I was diggin Wyatt's drum solo in 7/8 that is largely played on his cymbals. Love this album so much.
    It's hard for me to pick between Vol. 2 and Third, but I think I'd have to say I like Third just slightly more. It was my first introduction to the Wyatt-era of SM so it holds a special place in my heart. Vol. 2 is still bonkers and lovely though. That opening track with Wyatt giving the introduction is so perfectly executed. A choice selection of rivmic melodies, indeed.

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