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Various Artists — Short Stories
(Fruits de Mer Friends of the Fish promo CD22, 2023, CD)

Various Artists — Tall Tales
(Fruits de Mer Friends of the Fish promo CD21, 2023, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2024-01-12

Short Stories Cover artTall Tales Cover art

In Fruits de Mer’s efforts to discover and promote new talent that is not currently released commercially on the label, they released a double promo CD set, Tall Tales and Short Stories, last summer to share this music with a larger audience, for a total of about 2½ hours of new music. Tall Tales presents eight extended tracks in the six to fifteen minute range by some bands we’ve already covered: exedra (UK), Guranfoe (UK), Soft Hearted Scientists (UK), and Thirteen of Everything (Austin, TX), plus new names Technicolor Noir (France), Son of Ohm (Netherlands), El Universo (Mexico), and House Red Simio (Argentina), a true international effort. My favorite tracks are Technicolor Noir’s “Look at the Sun,” a West Coast psych trippy tour de force from the Paris underground, El Universo’s “Stellar Brightness Caused by Planets,” a neo-psych cosmic excursion, Son of Ohm’s “Reflections I” with its layered sonic textures drawing comparisons to the Berlin school of Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze, and of course exedra’s “The Sky River” that I recently reviewed and Thirteen of Everything’s excellent “Alternate Life.” Short Stories presents seventeen tracks in the two to six minute range by familiar names (Bhopal’s Flowers, Alain Pire Experience, The Telephones, and Blue Giant Zeta Puppies) and newbies (Bellavista, The Flower Machine, Dim Electrics, Nick Haeffner, The Vapour Trails, Brave New World, Lords of Form, Quarkspace, Dark Horse, Miranda Lee Richards and The Lords of Thyme, Church of Hed, Ancient Circle, and Quantum Surf Rocket Garage Dolls). There is something for all different tastes on Short Stories. Personal favorites include Dim Electrics’ motorik Krautrock / RnB “I Remember,” Bhopal’s Flowers’ raga rock “Byrd of the Trees,” The Vapor Trails’ pop psych “See You in the Next World,” Brave New Worlds’s nod to Tir na Nog on “Scarecrows,” The Telephones’ dreamy and hypnotic “Prosaic Turbulence - Dubrek Mix,” Dark Horse’s contemporary take on early Pink Floyd jamming on “The Sons of Carpio Are Led Astray,” Miranda Lee Richards’ 60s Brit folk rock “London Town” bringing to mind The Trees, Ancient Circle’s excellent “Kosmische I” aggressive take on Krautrock with a nod towards Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir,” and the album closer, “I’m Not Like Everyone Else,” by the Blue Giant Zeta Puppies, which is far too short in my opinion. The double CD compilation was provided free with Rob Gould’s excellent recreation of Genesis’ Nursery Cryme. So I you cannot find a copy offered online, you can at least preview some of the tracks via the YouTube links on the FdM web site.

Filed under: Archives, 2023 releases

Related artist(s): Thirteen of Everything, Quarkspace, Soft Hearted Scientists, Various Artists, Paul Williams (Church of Hed), Guranfoe, Bhopal's Flowers, Exedra

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