Various Artists — Sunny Spells
(Fruits de Mer crustacean 93, 2019, 7")
by Henry Schneider, Published 2020-05-13
This Spring Fruits de Mer is releasing a hugely expanded 4CD version of their 2018 3LP The Three Seasons - songs from 1966 - 68. As a teaser, Keith Jones decided to release a 7-inch EP with four tracks from the CD set. This EP is the other release I have delayed gratification on, refraining from listening to it until now. Back in 1968 I purchased Chad and Jeremy’s Of Cabbages and Kings just for their song “Rest in Peace.” And when I learned that FdM had enticed Chad and Jeremy to record an unplugged version for them I was ecstatic! Their vocals are as strong as they were 50 years ago and the song has not lost any of its allure. I found myself singing right along with them. Wow! The other three cover songs are Schizo Fun Addict's treatment of the Mamas and Papas’ “Dedicated to the One I Love,” Hanford Flyover’s cover of Neon Pearl’s “Just Another Day,” and Us & Them’s cover of Neil Young’s “What Did You Do to My Life?” The Schizos’ cover takes me back to high school with their perfect harmonies and eerie cover, though no one can hold a candle to Cass Elliott. Though not familiar with “Just Another Day,” I did quite enjoy that Hanford Flyover employed Mellotron and acoustic guitar. This is an excellent interpretation. And of course Us & Them bring their usual understated vocals and acoustic guitar for an excellent acid folk reading of Neil Young. Another excellent FdM release.
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more