Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Timebox - The Deram Anthology (1998 Decca Records) Flac & mp3@320



The roots of Timebox lay in local band Take 5 in 1965 in Southport, a small northern English coastal town (situated near Liverpool). After a succession of interpersonal incidents, which led to the vocalist quitting, the band was left in disorder. Fellow local act the Music Students (who featured 15-year-old drummer Peter Halsall, a great drummer who was also proving himself on a majesty of other instruments) were facing similar problems. Halsall, Chris Holmes (piano), and Kevan Foggerty (vocals) teamed up with Clive Griffiths as Take 5 and, very soon after, turned professional and headed towards London. Taken under the wing of the George Cooper agency, they were soon working on package tours with the Kinks, the Small Faces, Tommy Quickly, and Lou Christie, as well as striking up a residency at the legendary the Whiskey a Go Go. With two singers leaving (Liggett quit, then Frank Dixon unfortunately contracted tuberculosis) U.S. singer John Henry was drafted in and the band changed their name to Timebox -- an American term for a prison cell.


Signed to Piccadilly in February 1967, their debut single, "I'll Always Love You" b/w "Save Your Love," produced by John Schroeder, was released and displayed an early jazz-tinged, soulful talent.
Following this, more turns of fate occurred, with ex-G.I. Henry being whipped back off to the U.S.A by officials and Dean going down with tuberculosis (a spooky repeat). That April, the strictly instrumental 45 "Soul Sauce"/"I Wish I Could Jerk Like My Uncle Cyril" showed the band walking similar lines to Manfred Mann: airing competence but little imagination. Mike Patto, who had played with the Bo Street Runners and the Chicago Line (along with ex-Pretty Thing Viv Prince), joined Timebox after a few illustrious jams and took on a prominent role as vocalist and songwriter. When yet another drummer (Foggerty) quit, things once again went astray; luckily, however, the stool was soon filled by ex-Felder's Orioles' drummer John Halsey. Peter Halsall (now commonly known as "Ollie") was displaying a high degree of aptitude on guitar, as well as regular diversions into the vibes. His trademark sound of both searing guitar and mellow vibes was to the fore in the ensuing records.

Timebox soon became a hot live act. Many who saw them claimed Timebox to be one of the first rock bands in London to really explore jazz in a rock context. A wonderful performance at the Windsor Jazz Festival on August 12, 1967, caught the eye of Decca producer Gus Dudgeon, who immediately signed them to the label's subsidiary Deram. The first 45, a fantastic version of Tim Hardin's "Don't Make Promises," was backed by the even better Ollie original "Walking Through the Streets of My Mind," which combined sharp blue-eyed soul harmonies with a psychedelic arrangement. The follow-up -- again a classic example of British soul -- was a cover of the Four Seasons' "Beggin" and reached number 38 in the charts.


At the sessions that produced the hit, a slew of unreleased material -- some of the band's best -- was also recorded and airs the beginning of the Patto/Halsall songwriting partnership. All of these unreleased songs are compiled on The Deram Anthology and are essential listening for anyone with the slightest interest in quality late-'60s rock. The problem was that even Deram viewed Timebox as a pop band, and so the more experimental songs were left in the can while the silly sing-a-long tune "Baked Jam Roll in Your Eye," written for fun when the band members were drunk, was the next release in March 1969. It's styling was a little too late for the era of novelty psychedelia, and of no interest to the more rock-oriented record buyer; the flip-side, the tough "Poor Little Heartbreaker," would have been a far better choice.


By the summer of 1969, things were turning sour. The final release, "Yellow Van," was a great record and polite enough for airplay, but was banned due to the nature of the lyrics. This really was the end of the road for Timebox who had had a hard time at the best of times. The nucleus of the band merged into Patto, who released three albums in the 1970s.


Fine anthology of the band!
Enjoy it
             Frank                       Flac p1  &  Flac p2  &  Flac p3        -  mp3@320

Psychedelic Pop by Elephant Stone - The Three Poisons (2014 Hidden Pony Records) mp3@320


This is the third Longplayer by the band after debut 'The Seven Seas' and 2013 release 'Elephant Stone' named like the band. All the good things of the last release are gathered here, too and maybe a little more. But that's a question of taste. Hope you have fun.

Enjoy
         Frank           mp3@320



Jason Falkner - Presents Author Unknown 1996 Flac & mp3@320


You may remember Jason Falkner from helping out buddy Eric Matthews craft a tasty bit of pop music in 1995. Well, he's done it again, only all by himself this time. Writing, producing, singing, and playing nearly everything except the occasional guitar overdub (and strings), Jason has released a one-man pop tour de force. Hooks abound and won't let you down. The more you listen, the more you'll find yourself humming along. Standout tracks include "I Go Astray" and "Don't Show Me Heaven," but all are worthy of a listen. It's good ol' pop music. Better still, it's good music.(allmusic.com)

Bio (excerpts)

 A onetime member of the West Coast neo-psychedelic bands the Three O'Clock and Jellyfish, Jason Falkner went out on his own by 1996, playing jagged power pop with impeccable arrangements, a clue to both his classically trained childhood and additional time spent working on the first LP by another classical popster, Eric Matthews. Born in Los Angeles in 1968, Falkner grew up listening to West Coast pop bands like Love and Crosby, Stills & Nash but later began taking piano lessons in preparation for a classical career. Pop music regained control of his life when he discovered his sister's punk/new wave collection, and Falkner began playing the guitar, later appearing in several bands from his high school.


Not long after graduation, Falkner joined the Three O'Clock, leaders of the Los Angeles paisley underground scene, for their major-label debut (but sixth LP overall), 1988's Vermillion. Though solid, the album was unfortunately their last, and the band broke up soon after.
Later followed Jellyfish. After just one album he leaves the band and recorded with The Grays the pop classic Ro Sham Bo in 1994. After working with Eric Matthews around' 96 he recorded his first solo work Presents Author Unknown also in 1996. ( excerpts of allmusic and by me)


In the world of pop/power pop music the name Jason Falkner guarantees 100% top notch songs, guitar work, studio work...everything of his efforts in music business are always on a top level. And that's the reasons why he enjoy this great reputation. I am a real fan of Jason Falkner because i'm a guitarist for a very long time, too and he inspired me with his play since i heard him for the first time.
If you love Power Pop music and you don't know the album give it a try.

Have fun
Cheers
           Frank       Flac p1  &  Flac p2    - mp3@320

At Request... The Stoneage Hearts - Guilty As Sin (2005 Alive Records) mp3@320



This Australian trio features vocalist/guitarist Dom Mariani (Stems, DM3), who replaced Danny McDonald and wrote five of the songs; bassist Ian Wettenhall, who also contributed songwriting and lead vocals; and Mickster on drums. They're hardly the only garage revival band around, but they're definitely one of the better ones. Guilty as Sin's first half-dozen tracks hold up particularly well, displaying a relatively strong sense of melody and musicianship while avoiding the common garage rock pitfall of similar-sounding songs blending together to form an indistinct blur. "Green with Envy" is an especially memorable track with its catchy chorus, cut-short rhythms, and Mariani's fine guitar playing, and the band makes good use of its freakbeat-garage-psychedelic influences on other songs as well. Their inspiration does run a bit thin near the end, and their remake of the Creation's "Biff Bang Pow" is credible although not really necessary, but the band knows how to kick out the fuzz-fueled jams(allmusic.com)


A lot of great songs here. My favourites are  'Your Smile', 'Trouble Girl', 'Rock'n'Roll Boys & Rock'n'Roll Girls'.

Enjoy
         Frank              mp3@320