Daevid Allen Trio — Live 1963
(Blueprint BP122CD, 1963/2005, CD)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2005-09-01The fruitful seeds of the Canterbury sound have always been traceable back to the Wilde Flowers. So what if a valid live document of beat poetry just happened to suddenly surface as part of Rob Ayling’s Soft Machine archive project funneled by Brian Hopper? Surprisingly this semi-cohesive archive recording is intact from a small trio club gig led by Australian beatnik Daevid Allen. Allen’s support is propelled by the future rhythm section which would also drive “Hope for Happiness” and then “Facelift” several years later. Allen’s recitation is reflective of the type of Alan Ginsberg social commentary of the day; the sneering snobbery of “Capital Travel” is revealing to hear how developed Allen’s attitude was already for the time. A young Robert Wyatt on drums and Hugh Hopper on bass provide the occasional musical accompaniment albeit tentative and off a tangent to who knows where. Of note is both Allen’s and Hopper’s liner note commentary that muses on looking back into this simpler development phase in their careers. Allen’s point of view is one of political naiveté while Hopper’s focuses on keen reflection. Other tracks of note include “Song of the Jazzman” that spotlights a memorable bass line from Hopper and some inspired jazz drumming from Wyatt. Mike Ratledge contributes piano on the ensemble track “Dear Olde Benny Green Is A-Turning in His Grave,” which works as rambly jam for Allen’s brittle guitar leads. Overall the disc serves as the purest form of archive since the fact that this recording has survived in listenable format was unlikely.
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more