|Mixmag: Broad Oak Valley story|
The greatest light show on Earth
Broad Oak Valley
Broad Oak Valley, near Canterbury in Kent. Anne and I arrived just as the setting Sun was breaking from behind a cloud, spangling the sky in a wild burst of reds and golds: the greatest light show on Earth. Anne is 39, the mother of three kids. She'd got a baby-sitter in for the night. Right now she was wearing a little velvet number and a pair of shiny patent leather Docs. Dressed up to party. She had the window open as we puttered through the quiet Kent countryside: listening for Nightingales. But it's typical of her optimism. She didn't hear a Nightingale. Instead she said, "that means that they've all found mates." The most beautiful songs come from the loneliest birds she told me.
We're on our way to a free party, put on by tVC of Kent and Rogue of Lincoln. The tVC/Rogue Mutual Admiration Society. The usual things happen. I miss the turning and get lost down some dusty lane. I turn around and I'm just about to give up when another car comes roaring in. And luckily they know where the party is. We clatter over a bank of rubble and into the garden of a boarded-up house. Everyone's busy, setting up the marquee, hanging from the canvas to pull the guy-ropes tight. Someone is lighting a fire. Piles of equipment lie scattered around in disarray. Everyone's running about, having a laugh, giddily anticipating the Night's promise.
Well, Broad Oak has a history. It was compulsorily purchased some thirty years ago to make way for a reservoir. Only they never did build the reservoir. And since the late '60s it's been the scene of countless parties. How many of you rememberKevin Ayres
or the Soft Machine
? These were the hippest people back then. Kevin Ayres dyed his hair purple. He had a deep, sonorous voice, and his lyrics sounded dead cool when you were tripping. They were responsible for a number of the parties. Later - in 1976 - someone else tried to hold a free festival here. It was the People's Free Festival, unfortunate offspring of the earlier Windsor festivals, now banned. The police did what they usually do: they fenced off great swathes of the countryside and mounted a 24-hour cordon for several days. Local people said that they'd rather have put up with the hippies. The festival ended up on the muddy wastes of Seasalter marsh about seven miles away. Lots of people took their clothes off to protest at harassment by the drug squad. They made the front page of the local paper. Some of my friends still talk about the event. It was the most memorable thing in their lives.
Well nothing changes does it? We still try to hold parties, the police still try to stop us, and we still move on when we have to.
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Independent on Sunday
|SOME OTHER BOOKS BY C.J.STONE|
As you may have noticed I am somewhat of a Beatles obsessive. I am also a self-styled rock and roll archaeologist with an ever growing collection of rock and roll biographies.
- Hardcover: 352 pages
- Publisher: Touchstone; 1st Edition edition (29 Oct 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1416590935
- ISBN-13: 978-1416590934
- Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 15.9 x 23.1 cm
I first heard of Chris O’Dell, not via either of the famous songs written about her (‘Pisces Apple Lady’ by Leon Russell and ‘Miss O’Dell’ by George Harrison) but via the disarming portrait of her in Robert Greenfield’s Journey Through America with The Rolling Stoneswhich is one of my favourite books.
|She was an integral part of the 1972 American tour, during which the Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the world promoted their recent ‘Exile on Main Street’ double album, and Greenfield’s description of her portrayed her as a charming, slightly naïf young lady who in many ways acted as Wendy to the family of Rock and Roll Lost Boys.|
I knew very little else about her, but when I found a copy of this autobiography, (about which I knew absolutely nothing) on Amazon one evening when – mildly in my cups – I was giving my credit card some exercise, I snapped it up and added it to my order. I then promptly forgot all about it, and was pleasantly surprised when it landed on my door mat on one of the days when I was Hawkwinding last weekend.
During my two days recuperation from my labouring in the psychedelic vineyard, I sat down with the kittens and some diabetic chocolate and devoured the book in a couple of sittings. I never realised what an extraordinary career this slight and self effacing young lady from Oklahoma had between the fag end of the sixties and the time that the eighties became utterly unbearable. She worked with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan and more. She had affairs with Ringo Starr (but still managed to remain friends with Maureen) and Mick Jagger, and probably others but unlike poor Marianne Faithfull, despite adventures with Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll managed to escape relatively unscathed, and still a rather nice person, and basically fulfilled the role of little sister to a whole plethora of rock and rollers.
Whereas Marianne’s two volumes of autobiography (and, don’t get me wrong, I am an enormous Marianne Faithfull fan) describe her descent into depravity and near disaster, Miss O’Dell (the book is named after George Harrison’s song about her) seems to have lived a relatively charmed life, and done mostly good things, and everyone looked out for and looked after her. The only villain of the piece seems to have been Eric Clapton, who comes over as a grumpy pain in the arse. However, some people could say that about me, so who am I to cast the first stone?
This should have pride of place in your rock and roll bookshelf, as a companion piece to Richard DeLello’s massively entertaining The Longest Cocktail Party.
(The Masters of the Universe do seem to have a steady stream of interesting stories featuring them, their various friends and relations, and alumni). Each week Graham Inglis keeps us up to date with the latest news from the Hawkverse..
|You can't judge a book by its cover?|
While the main topic of conversation among Hawkwind fans has been the recent Space Ritual show in London, some have taken time out to comment on a recent 'book' called "Hawkwind members" and which is being advertised on the Barnes & Noble bookshop site.
Bizarrely, the material is, the order page states, sourced from Wikipedia (!) and the book consists of a mere 22 pages, and yet is selling for $15. Unsurprisingly, no-one's yet said they've bought it - and fan remarks on the deal thus far have been, well, somewhat less than flattering.
Space is Deep!
Britain's Channel 4 broadcaster have, I've heard, included 'Silver Machine' on one of their trailers for a forthcoming series on space. That song's surfaced before in a promo role - having been used in a TV advert by the Ford motor company, and, quite some years earlier, the Mazda car company. It's perhaps a shame that the makers of brushed-aluminium washing machines haven't picked up on the song yet.
It was with great anticipation that I ordered and devoured Mike Rutherford
‘s autobiography The Living Years.
After all, Mike’s been a musical hero to me, from his early days in Genesis
to their triumphant years of global popularity through to his solo work. His underrated guitar and Rickenbacker bass playing, particularly during the early years of the band is studied and assured. In fact, there have been several chances lately with The Musical Box
and Steve Hackett
performing early Genesis to witness how Mike played that double necked instrument and it’s a striking thing to behold. Once Peter Gabriel
left the group followed by Steve Hackett two years later, I stuck with the band, never being one to hate on later Genesis for being more pop and less progressive (okay, save maybe for the title track to Invisible Touch.) So while I looked forward to Mike’s story about the early formative days, I expected to be pleased with the coverage of his entire career and what he might share of his personal life.
After reading the work, there are some pro’s and con’s to the autobiography. There is a key framing device – Mike’s love for his father, and feelings that they did not connect sufficiently during his lifetime – it’s a beautiful sentiment and I would expect nothing less from this gentle soul. But the book is short at only 239 pages, and the amount of space spent explaining his father’s life, including writings from his journals, leaves too little room for Mike to reflect at proper length on the different stages of his career. He does offer a comparatively thorough assessment of his early years growing up, becoming rebellious as a teen, and joining Anthony Phillips
and the gang in early groups, leading the reader through those times, including how the group that became Genesis formed, their debut album, and first par releaseTrespass
. But after giving those very early formative years full attention, each album or major event afterwards, from the years 1971 on, are addressed with shorter passages, each revealing fewer observations and gems from Mike as author than would be hoped. In some cases, Mike seems not to have perspective on his work, particularly it’s early, more progressive leanings.
Notably, there’s only a page and a half about the brilliant Selling England by the Pound
in which Mike does not reflect on his growth, saying it “wasn’t my favorite album” and wondering how they ended up writing a hit single “I Know What I Like” – even though we can all recall that was a riff Steve Hackett developed and contributed. Little else is said about the artistry of Hackett other than the usual track about how he left the band, his timing in deciding to release his first solo album (just after Gabriel’s departure) and how he had some trouble fitting in to the group. Also, though a lot is said about their friendship, nothing substantial is written about his work with Anthony on the gorgeous Geese and the Ghost
record. Mike also gives short mention to the wonderful lyrics he’s written, reflecting that his writing in later years was more fitting.
|FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES|
Have you ever featured Welsh psychedelic/space rock band Sendelica in your Gonzo Multimedia pages? A few months ago I did an interview with founder and guitarist Pete Bingham for Cambria magazine, which hopefully should be appearing in print very soon.
If you'd like an interview or an album review (they are just about to release a compilation of some of their earlier pieces on vinyl - see http://sendelica.bandcamp.com/
), it would be quite easy to arrange, although I do have a bias towards the band seeing as Pete recently asked me to join as stand-in bassist (long-time bass player Glenda Pescado isn't always available to play live because of work commitments).
My first gig with Sendelica will be 7th March at the Zephyr, in Leamington Spa, supporting Here & Now. (Wish me luck!)
This letter from our old friend Gavin Lloyd Wilson arrived in my in-box the very day that I posted my story about them last weekend. However, I have been listening to several more of their albums and am especially impressed by their very Fortean THE MEGALITHS -THE MOVIE SOUNDTRACKS VOLUME 1 AND 2
He actually IS called Jon Pertwee, and he runs a shop selling pop culture memorabilia with a special emphasis on Dr Who related stuff. He is an old mate of mine, and from now on will be doing a regular column in this magazine. Hooray!
He also appears on BBC Radio Devon on Wednesdays at 10pm if you are in the area
|I always wondered about annuals; they were often the gift of a particularly dotty aunt when I was growing up. I got a "Sweeney" one once from her inscribed inside, "I hope this book isn’t too violent dear". I’m not sure if she was referring to a deer being violent to one of the coppers from the show, or if she thought my life was a lemonade and balloon party at that time and she feared it would seep into the world of the TV show and corrupt it. Who knows or indeed cares! The annual came about at the start of the 20th Century, but records do show that versions of a coloured h/b book were about at festive times just before that. It is the cult TV ones I would like to touch upon in this wordage.|
|The annuals I came to know and love were the ones from the shows that the Beeb used to screen; I vividly recall the bright garish covers of “The Avengers” issue with John Steed, standing over a spread-legged Joanna Lumley and Gareth Hunt (excuse me I must refer to that cover again for a few mins!) and that one was the very first that actually stayed with me for years. Obviously the whole idea of a children’s annual was that it gave the tot something to read on Boxing Day. They normally had puzzles, comic strips, and copy and pasted photos from the particular show inside. The “Dr Who” issues became a regular staple for any ‘Who’ fan whether it was |
|Hartnell staring sternly at the butterfly men who seemed to be making a nest in the Tardis roof or Colin Baker – well, being Colin Baker, a lot of the early “Who” annuals used art work to sell the book and then towards the end of their run the mighty cut and paste crew snipped and snapped a few office used shots of the actor who was the Doctor at that time. Huge embarrassment when Tom B became Peter D and the only photos available of the incoming Doc were from ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ - hurrumph!|
I raise a glass to the annuals of yore. Gawd bless you every one, except the ones with a CERTAIN actor plastered on their cover. Grrr you ruined that Xmas!
|THE WORLD OF GONZO ACCORDING TO GHOSTMAN RAINES|
|THE YES CIRCULAR - TIME AND A WORD|
|The Court Circular tells interested readers about the comings and goings of members of The Royal Family. However, readers of this periodical seem interested in the comings and goings of Yes and of various alumni of this magnificent and long-standing band. Give the people what they want, I say|
|I am probably getting a bit OCD about all of this, but I find the Yes soap opera of sound to be absolutely enthralling, and I for one can't wait to see what happens next! |
Changing the world one gift at a time
The worldwide Freecycle Network is made up of many individual groups across the globe. It's a grassroots movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns. Freecycle groups match people who have things they want to get rid of with people who can use them. Our goal is to keep usable items out of landfills. By using what we already have on this earth, we reduce consumerism, manufacture fewer goods, and lessen the impact on the earth. Another benefit of using Freecycle is that it encourages us to get rid of junk that we no longer need and promote community involvement in the process.
|CARTOONS, ASTROLOGY, POETRY|
What do you turn to when you open your paper?
First-you have to have a newspaper!128 have closed since 2008
Many are anorexic reminders of advertising circulars
Some just a pastiche of mass circulation wire service news
Very local community newspapers still exist despite small circulations
To pay for journalists,photographers,cartoonists is a crunch
Circulation limits may be challenged via high value subscriptions
(like trade journals,art magazines,special interest publications)-
but these are intermittent and rarely published daily
Blogs run on an entirely different model-some sell products
some are pay per view,some a combination of product placement and artistic process
There is no longer any one monolith like those days of William Randolph Hearst
not even the Media Empire of Rupert Murdoch.Workers remember Wapping,strikes,job losses-
even now pink slips await random journalists of high quality.What sells?
Well-who is buying?and what exactly are you selling?
|In Victorian times every well-bred Gentleman had a 'Cabinet of Curiosities'; a collection of peculiar odds and sods, usually housed in a finely made cabinet with a glass door. These could include anything from Natural History specimens to historical artefacts. There has always been something of the Victorian amateur naturalist about me, and I have a houseful of arcane objects; some completely worthless, others decidedly not, but all precious to me for the memories they hold.|
But people send me lots of pictures of interesting, and, may I say, peculiar things. But once again this week it is over to my lovely wife...
|Every week I tell myself not to look on Ebay to see what I can find that I can comment on in this column. It does, let's face it, become a bit predictable after a while. But that candle flame keeps calling me back to flutter around the listings. I don't apologise for the fact that this week contains not one, but two Beatle-related items. Beatlemania will never die, it seems. The first just had me scratching my head, and the second made me angry.|
So why am I more than a little confused about this first one? The listing on Ebay states: “Ringo Starr Photos 1984 saturday night live appearance, back stage.” So these – mostly blurry – photos are up for grabs at a starting bid of US $99,000 (£59,384.56)? Wow, that’s a lot of dosh for a rather crappy set of photos in my opinion. However, let us continue. The description starts off reasonably well, if not a tad incoherent and rather badly presented:
|“Ringo Starr .....12/8/1984 ....28 years ago..original pictures. personal pictures taken by me...i took these pictures of Ringo Starr as he passed by me backstage, nodding his head hello.|
they are original pictures never before seen, although some are a bit out of focus.
the whole show and the cast and crew were just great.
I'm selling full rights and ownership. ( of course, the "Ringo" text is not on the originals !)” – well d’oh.
|Apart from his skills at adding up not being what you would call, ‘on the ball’ , and I am not going to suggest that he ran out of fingers because that would be too sarcastic – darn did I say that out loud? Anyway, then comes the postscript:|
“of course, i'm kidding about the price. Ringo , my favorite beatle, ever heard about this!
sheesh! i dont know but he might remember this experiece at the end of the show that night in 1984>>>
as he was leaving the studio, he came out of his dressing room and headed down the
hallway with a group of people, he was going to the elevator down the hall, he looked happy like he had a fun time
that night.. ..... i said " hey ringo, can i
take your picture?" and i think he said " something ?????" i'm not really sure. i think "time" is all i really heard, not sure.
i didnt take his picture.
then he put on his sunglasses, smiled and walked by.
he just was too cool.
So for what price are these pretty naff photos up for sale then? Or are they even up for sale at all? Or is this postscript a cover in case someone is fool enough to bid before reading everything?
Je ne comprends pas, monsieur.
|And so on to the next one: |
RARE PAUL McCARTNEY MEDAL FROM PAUL & LINDA McCARTNEY BEATLES RELATED
“THIS WAS A MEDAL GIVEN TO "TERRY" ONE OF THE PEOPLE WHO HELPED WITH PAUL McCARTNEY'S WORLD CAMPAIGN 1989-1990”
Buy it now price is £999,999.00 with free standard delivery (gosh, my cup runneth over with delight at this generosity). However, if you read further you come across this
|Now, according to this link the current bid is £300 and the auction ends on the 13th March, whereas the Ebay auction ends on 26th March. So is this some kind of crazy bluff going on here? Draw folk in to check out the outrageous Ebay price, who then find the link to the auction, which then hopefully leads to more people bidding on the item? With two watchers on the item on Ebay is this bluff going to work the other way and will someone actually spend the higher amount? Surely not. No-one would be that stupid? Who knows?|
When I first saw this, before checking out the other link, my first reaction was disgust. Disgust that something made as a gimmick would have such a high price when war medals are having to be sold for so much less, just so that those who were awarded them defending this country can survive under our government’s caring patronage.
But after discovering what appears to be some dupe, I am still disgusted. But disgusted for different reasons. The word charlatan comes to mind.
I can but hope that the candle flame flickers and dies before I am again looking for bizarre items for this column. I hope that next week, I can resist pressing that Ebay button and then can be spared such things as these. It doesn't do my sanity or blood-pressure good at all.
Slipknot got it right you know: Some “People (do) equal shit.”
|MISLEADING HEADLINE OF THE WEEK:|
"CONFIRMED: Peter Andre and Emily MacDonagh give birth to 'beautiful baby girl' at Musgrove Park Hospital."
Wow did he? How did he manage that exactly? Or is this the new way of announcing births these days in the name of equality? And why do we actually need to know this anyway - it's not as if babies are born once in a blue moon, and only then to 'famous' people. Huh? Oh yes, of course, how would those magazines like 'Hello' make their money?
|Well, the Miami police have released it. I am not particularly sure why they felt it necessary so to do. Or is this yet another publicity stunt in the making? Of what am I writing? The ‘riveting’ video of Justin Beiber’s sobriety test, that’s what. If you are partial to watching paint dry, watch away. I gave it around 2 seconds before I decided that I would rather watch the sticky paint-drip of a particularly nasty shade of puce make its way slowly down a freshly painted wall. Perhaps if he had clicked the heels of those red shoes together,the whole episode may have turned out to be a dream. Oh how I wish, then we wouldn't have to be witness to such trivial 'headlines' as this.|
|And before I go .....|
Continuing on from termites gnawing faster to heavy rock music, cows make more milk when listening to slow jams so there you go.
|SHAMELESS SELF PROMOTION TIME|
Just in case you are interested, here is yer beloved Editor at iTunes
Check it out now...
|INTRODUCING THE NINE HENRYS|
There are nine Henrys, purported to be the world’s first cloned cartoon character. They live in a strange lo-fi domestic surrealist world peopled by talking rock buns and elephants on wobbly stilts.
They mooch around in their minimalist universe suffering from an existential crisis with some genetically modified humour thrown in. I think Peter McAdam is one of the funniest people around, and I cannot recommend his book The Nine Henrys highly enough. Check it out at Amazon.
Each issue we shall be running a series of Henrybits that are not found in his book about the nine cloned cartoon characters who inhabit a surreal world nearly as insane as mine...
The Weird Weekend is the largest yearly gathering of mystery animal investigators in the English-speaking world. Now in its fifteenth year, the convention attracts speakers and visitors from all over the world and showcases the findings of investigators into strange phenomena.
Cryptozoologists, parapsychologists, ufologists, and folklorists are descending on Woolfardisworthy Community Centre to share their findings and insights. Unlike other events, the Weird Weekend will also include workshops giving tips to budding paranormal investigators, and even a programme of special events for children. The Weird Weekend is the only fortean conference in the world that is truly a family event, although those veterans of previous events should be reassured that it is still as anarchically silly as ever!
The event is raising money for the Centre for Fortean Zoology, the world’s only full time, professional cryptozoological organisation. The profit from food and beverages goes to a selection of village charities, mostly working with children.
|the running order (so far) for the 2014 event|
|t Psychoanorexia (PROGRESSIVE PROMOTION)|
|Both in the press release and on his website, Thomas Thielen has a mission statement about this album which is well worth reproducing here. “This is the time when ringtone applicability equals musical quality. This is the place where the greed of being a popstar has replaced the sublime experience of creativity. This is the era in which democracy means mass phenomena, not choices. When we have become too lazy even for subterfuges. And too busy to feel the loss. This is the age when equality means mediocrity, fame defames excellence, education encourages despondency. We excel in conformity, we celebrate our empty hands. We may not burn books, but we skim them.|
|We may not slaughter heretics', but we overshout them. We strive, long, hunger for nothing, thus nobody strive, long, hunger. Fascistic, yet aimless aposiopetic selves. Timetabled freedom. Death in Bologna. Psychoanorexia.”|
Yes, this is an album that wants, in fact demands, that we think. Thomas wrote, performed, recorded, engineered and produced the album but it doesn’t come across as a one-man band, as it is so carefully constructed and layered. The piano may well be the bedrock of all that he does, but this is more than just a pianist attempting to bring in some other instrumentation to pad it out, but instead this is all about the right instrument for the right emotional feel and approach. When he brings in electric guitar it fairly blasts out of the speakers, with “Kryptonite Monologues” actually managing to have more than just a hint of Rammstein about it. There are times when this is crunching stadium-filling anthem rock with blistering guitar solos, while at others it is Muse on steroids, Floyd for the masses, Porcupine Tree for the many.
It is not an album that will make its’ full presence felt on just one or two plays, this does need some work but rewards the listener for their patience. Apparently Thomas states that he is a “strictly under-average musician on quite a few instruments, none of which he is capable of playing properly”. Somehow I think he is a master of understatement, as certainly that doesn’t come across on the album. Complex, complicated, majestic and soaring, this is quite a piece of work. There are only four songs, but it is still well over an hour long, and well worth investigating.
|THIS MISERY GARDEN Another Great Day On Earth (PROGROCK)|
|Originally formed in Geneva in 2005, TMG recorded some demo tracks in 2006 that gained them some attention in the local music scene, and led to them recording this their debut album in 2007. Fast forward to the end of 2009 and the album was reissued through Prog Rock, SPV and Galileo. Now in 2013 they have just released the follow-up, ‘Cornerstone’, so it seems like a good time to go back and see what the debut gave us. Straight from the off it is obvious that Katatonia have been a major influence on the guys, with a cold bleakness permeating through their riffing guitars. There is plenty of emotion and atmosphere on display, and I initially I was somewhat surprised that it has taken them so long to build on this.|
|A Perfect Circle is another reference point, as is The Cure, but it is the bleakness of Katatonia that has had a major impact on the band, and given my liking of that group it can’t be a bad thing. But, I did find my interest wandering during the fourteen songs and was somewhat surprised to notice that it had finished playing in the background and I hadn’t noticed. So I went back through it again, and found that while playing just a few songs was interesting, playing the whole album wasn’t so much. Although the style and application is positive, more work is required on the songs. But, this was a debut and it has taken them six years to deliver the follow-up so maybe that new one is better, but while this is okay it is never more than that.|
|TRAUMHAUS Die Andere Seite (SAUSTARK RECORDS)|
|I recently received a copy of Traumhaus’s third album, which reminded me that I really ought to get my ass into gear and review their second, which was released in 2008 (I haven’t had it since then, honest!). At the time they were a trio of Tobias Hampl (guitars), Alexander Weyland (vocals, keyboards), Hans Jrg Schmitz (drums, percussion) with guest bassist Jordan H. Gazall. The album is sung in German, a somewhat unusual approach given that most German prog bands use English, but it really works. It reminds me at times of one of my favourite German prog acts, Grobschnitt, especially with their use of mellotron as they have a very Seventies feel to the music. Also, the vocals are very much sung in a register where Alexander can concentrate on emotion, and only goes higher when there is a need instead of trying to sing higher all the time.|
|The guitars have a strident edge, while the keyboards provide the layering, and Hans knows when to pummel the kit or when to just gently tap on a cymbal here and there. The result is a band who clearly understand the need for space within the music and while at times it can be almost overpowering in its’ intensity, there are others when it is quite calming and soothing. The layers can be wound into and across each other so that they have strength, or unwrapped and loose to that there is room for it all to flow and breathe.|
It is an album of grace and passion, one that brings a smile to the face of this proghead every time I play it. If you missed this when it came out back in ’08 then you owe it to your ears to get hold of it now.
|CARCASS Surgical Steel (NUCLEAR BLAST)|
|Carcass was originally formed by guitarist Bill Steer and drummer Ken Owen in 1985 under the name Disattack. After releasing one demo the bassist and singer left to be replaced by vocalist Sanjiv and bassist Jeff Walker. They changed their name to Carcass and in April 1987, recorded the ‘Flesh Ripping Sonic Torment’ demo, after which vocalist Sanjiv departed leaving the core of Walker, Steer and Owen. They shared the vocal duties, and after just four days the classic ‘Reek of Putrefaction’ was completed. The band, with additional guitarists, released some incredible albums with ‘Necrotiscm – Decanting the Insalubrious’ being probably the highlight, but in 1995 they called it a day. |
|At the end of the Nineties Ken Owen suffered a cerebral hemorrhage, which meant that when a version of the band reformed in 2007 he could not be involved, so Daniel Erlandsson took his place while Michael Amott, Bill Steer and Jeff Walker played some festivals. So why all the ancient history? Well, it’s important to put into context just how significant this band was in the development of extreme music, and just how great it is to have them back again. Bill Steer and Jeff Walker have brought in drummer Daniel Wilding as Ken is still not well enough to play, and have taken ‘Necroticism’ as a starting point, cranked it up, and then blasted through any preconceived ideas.|
This is crushing, crunching, dynamic stuff. The wonderful song titles are still there (“Cadaver Pouch Conveyor System” or “Noncompliance to ASTM F 899-12 Standard”) for example, but to be honest this is all about complex and complicated metal with guitar runs to die for. Metal really doesn’t get much better than this, with the only question being why on earth has it taken so long for these guys to get back into the studio. Two production heavyweights, Colin Richardson and Andy Sneap, have ensured that every nuance and every ounce of brutality has been captured on what has to be one of the most incredible comeback albums ever. It really is as if these guys have never been away, and anyone who has ever nodded a bonce to their work in the past is going to incredibly pleased with what has been delivered here. Let’s hope that they don’t wait quite so long for the next one.
With this Carcass have proved that they are back with a vengeance – stunning metal that deserves to be played at 11.