MIND DE-CODER 13 (27-05-10)

MIND DE-CODER 13 (27-05-10)


MIND DE-CODER 13

(27-05-10)

“I can’t believe you finished the show with Art Garfunkel, Man!”

TRACY THORN     RAISE THE ROOF (A BEYOND THE WIZARD’S SLEEVE RE-ANIMATION)

A gentle introduction to this evening’s show from Tracy Thorn’s second solo album OUT OF THE WOODS from 2007. This version has been taken round the back of the bike sheds for some loving from Mind De-Coder favourite Beyond The Wizard’s Sleeve. You can find this and many more of their remixes on the album BEYOND THE WIZARD’S SLEEVE RE-ANIMATIONS VOL. 1, on which they work their magic on the likes of Goldfrapp, The Chemical Brothers, Midlake and Franz Ferdinand. Always a firm favourite round these parts.

JULY     DANDELION SEEDS

July, as I’ve mentioned in an earlier blog, are often considered also-rans in psychedelic circles. Returning from the continent in time to find that Pink Floyd had just finished in the Abbey Road studios, they moved straight in and came out with JULY, released in 1968. It fails to capture the giddy heights of Piper At The Gates Of Dawn, but does contain a couple of stone cold classics, Dandelion Seeds being one of them. Just when it seems it’s getting into an extended jam, an eerie slow passage is super-imposed over the beat in what is considered, in some circles, as one of the greatest moments in psychedelic history. On the other hand, they’re also responsible for ‘Hello, Who’s There’ (see Mind De-Coder 10).

THE EARLIES     NO LOVE IN YOUR HEART

The Earlies have a kind of folk meets prog meets krautrock meets electronica thing going on which works for me but means that their records will essentially remain unplayed on the radio, or, for the most part, anywhere else for that matter. This track, however, taken from their 2007 release THE ENEMY CHORUS, will always get them played on Mind De-Coder, which almost makes up for it, I imagine.

KOOBAS     BARRICADES

The Koobas were one of the great lost bands of the 60’s. They started off all Merseybeat, even got themselves managed by Brian Epstein for a while, but produced nothing that was ever worth jumping up and down about. By 1968 they were ready to call it a day, but before they went managed to produce this sprawling psychedelic monster of a track that can be found on their only album THE KOOBAS, released in 1969. It manages to sound like no other track released in the 60’s.

JULIAN COPE     THE 18 CHARMS OF ODIN

Even by Julian Cope’s standards this is something of a rarity. The 18 Charms of Odin was released as part of a limited edition CD to accompany Cope’s series of lectures at The British Museum in 2001. The subject of his lectures was: ‘DISCOVER ODIN’, in which Cope reclaimed for the warlike All-father of the Vikings his original reputation as poet, priest and nurturer of early European culture (this was the occasion in which Cope upset a few academics by illustrating Odin’s role as the hanging God with a 1971 black & white TV performance of Alice Cooper). The 18 Charms of Odin is adapted, by Cope, from the Norse Myth ‘The lord Of The Gallows’. The CD also contains the 18 minute Road To Yggdrasilbury, which I might save for another day.

SIMON DUPREE AND THE BIG SOUND     KITES

Apparently the band recorded something like 50 tracks in their life time and played over 300 gigs a year, but they are known essentially for this one track, the psychedelic ballad Kites. it was recorded in the Abbey Road studios at the same time The Beatles were recording Sgt. Peppers. The Beatles recorded all night and pretty much just left their instruments in the studio during the day time – which possibly explains why this track includes xylophone, mellotron, gong, wind-machine and possibly the kitchen sink. The sexy female voice-over was recorded phonetically by the actress Jacqui Chan (not Jackie Chan) – she had no idea what she ended up saying, and nor does anyone else.

MELLOW CANDLE     SHEEP SEASON

Acid folk doesn’t get any more atmospheric or beautiful than this, but the record buying public disagreed and after releasing just one album in 1972, the very fine SWADDLING SONGS, the group split up. These days, of course, it’s considered as something of the holy grail of folk rock albums and you can’t buy the album for love nor money. That’s what a spiralling two way soaring vocal harmony is supposed to sound like, just in case you wondered.

THE LILAC TIME     MORNING SUN

The thing about Stephen Duffy is that he has never really got over that whole Tin Tin business at the start of his career (not that he should ever feel that he has to apologise for Kiss Me round my house). Since those early days, however, he’s gone on to make six or seven albums with his band The Lilac Time and they’ve all been splendid pastoral folk-pop affairs that have replaced the sugary tunes with an over-riding sense of English melancholy plus elegantly crafted melodic music that’s doomed to remain under-rated by everyone who’s never heard them. Morning Sun can be found on their fifth album LOOKING FOR A DAY IN THE NIGHT, released in 1999.

THE SOFT HEARTED SCIENTISTS     BROTHER SISTER

This song kills me every time I hear it. I don’t know whether it’s the children crying when it was time for his brother to move on, or his sister and her cat in San Francisco who he wishes that he saw more often, but this song just stops me in my tracks and puts a big lump in my throat. The fact that it’s also a giddy slice of playful Welsh psychedelia also helps – I swear they must put something in their tea over there. You can find it on their debut album UNCANNY TALES FROM THE EVERYDAY UNDERGROWTH, released in 2005, which collected together their first 3 EP’s. It’s one of my favourite albums ever – I once spent a very agreeable sunny afternoon listening to it on repeat under enhanced circumstances and wrote them a letter straight after telling them how great I thought they were. They even replied, telling me that they thought I was great, too.

ORANGE BICYCLE      A TRIP ON AN ORANGE BICYCLE

Sometimes it’s all in the title – A Trip On An Orange Bicycle tells you almost everything you need to know about this track. Released in 1968, from the album ORANGE BICYCLE. Before switching onto psychedelia they toured under the name Rob Storm and the Whispers – nuff said.

GO HOME PRODUCTIONS     2000 LIGHT YEARS FROM BOLAN

The only mash-up on tonight’s show, mashing up The Rolling Stones with Marc Bolan, of course. .Mark Vidler is a very highly regarded remixer/

mash up artist who’s first album of hand-bag disco mash-ups was  poorly received on account of it arriving just too late for anyone to care. For his second album he returned to his first love, psychedlic music and TV ads (anyone who’s ever heard ‘Wouldn’t it Be Nice To Have A Finger Of fudge’ won’t forget it in a hurry), to create SPLICED KRISPIES which is available as free download on http://www.gohomeproduction.co.uk  2000 Light Years From Bolan is a track that simply struts around your headphones looking for something to shag.

GOLDFRAPP     HAPPINESS (BEYOND THE WIZARD’S SLEEVE REMIX)

The fact is, that if you’re ever lucky enough to hear this track under euphemistically enhanced circumstances you will appreciate that Alison Goldfrapp has the voice of an angel. I have never heard anything that comes close. It is a pure, exquisite and transcendent delight, and I don’t say this lightly, and in the hands of Beyond The Wizard’s Sleeve you also have beautiful mutlilayered piece of music to explore. Marvellous. The original (which is not without it’s own charms), can be found on their album THE SEVENTH TREE, released in 2008. This was the album wherein they  discovered a gentle vein of pastoral folk with which to delight their listeners. With their latest album they’ve decided to be The Pointer Sisters.

THE EIGHTEENTH DAY OF MAY     THE HIGHEST TREE

I love this track. It’s probably my favourite on this evening’s show – it never makes me feel less than joyful, and possibly up for a bit of dancing if someone were able to produce a fiddle from behind a convenient hay stack. The Eighteenth Day of May only made one album, THE EIGHTEENTH DAY OF MAY, released in 2007. It sounds like like they grew up listening to their parent’s early Fairport Convention albums, but try as I might I can’t think of anything wrong with that statement.

THE AMORPHOUS ANDROGYNOUS     OPUS OF THE BLACK SUN

Who knew? It seems Amorphous Androgynous and myself are ploughing the same furrow, but having listened to both their A Monstrous Psychedelic Bubble Exploding In Your Mind compilations, can I just say that I think Mind De-Coder is, ooh, just a tiny little bit better. That is to say, I haven’t thought: “Goodness me, that’s a really clever mix, I wish I’d thought of that”, just yet. On the other hand, I’m not kidding myself that I’m in any sort of competition with them either, what with them being famous and able to make a living out of something that I seem to be doing as a hobby. Anyway, this track is taken from THE PEPPERMINT TREE AND THE SEEDS OF SUPERCONSCIOUSNESS, released in 2008, which pretty much does what it says on the label.

OSYMYSO     FIVER TO BIGWIG

This is a bit unfair, isn’t it? If I’ve done my job properly I’ve led you up the garden path and left you there dazed in some pastoral psychedelic reverie, then I play out with this track by Osymyso which, I don’t know, just seemed to fit. Anyway, you can’t take these things too seriously otherwise you’ll up in your arse, and not the other side of your mind, which is what I’m aiming for, of course. Just for the record, you can find this at http://osymyso.com He’s also the creator of BRINGS YOU THE ART OF FLIPPING CHANNELS, which is an excellent mash up of sounds and 1970’s TV show themes, so he’s not entirely evil.

And that was Mind De-coder 13. I thank you.

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