Recommendations - APRIL 2008


Not a bad voice for an ex army tank driver from Tufnel Park. I stuck this on recently and it sort of stayed on the turntable, refusing to move for ages. It's the sticky, saucy track about honey from the vine I like. And the one about romance. And there's another one I like on it too. Shame he had a drink problem really.


This man has one of the greatest instruments I have ever seen. I mean look at it, it's like a musical Taj Mahal. Sounds pretty bonkers too, all electric and banjo like. I'm not sure if this is actually any good, but that's really not important, it's more the thing, his thing, the record thing and the cover thing. I might turn it into a tee shirt. Or a mug.


This comes from what I'd call the 3rd Chet Baker period, post cool jazz, post smack, post prison when he's residing in Europe and has learnt to play with his brand new teeth, It starts with a fine jazz dance classic, and then just drifts into a fairly blue series of extremely well played tunes that melt into a fine whole. He even sings on the last tune, which also works extremely well. Recorded in about 1980, with a bunch of talented young French people this LP miraculously manages to avoid the cheesy, glossy jazz sound often associated with this era. So well done everyone.


I'll be totally honest with you and admit that I have not listened to this yet, and possibly never will. It's just that the title and the LP sleeve are superb and horrid at the same time.


I've never really gone off Mel Torme, there's always a Mel LP somewhere in my DJ bag and always one either within reach or in myhead. Anyway, I caught the start of a crap film starring Jane Fonda a few weeks ago and realised the title song was on an old Mel Torme LP I'd given away to an American with good hair a few years ago, and then I realised I must have it back. Thank the maker for Sounds Original in South Ealing, who sold me a very good copy for next to bugger all. Well seven quid. Bit more than bugger all then.


Tribal flutey jazz things from a very unusual, seldom seen library label. This almost borders on exotique, a little like my wife's undies if she's in a playful mood at the weekend, which is not that often these days. But maybe that's just me. I think it probably is.


For many years this has been a classic. I remember when it was bootlegged in the very early 90s on a dodgy white label with some old Roy Ayres thang. As a piece of music it crosses over into all sorts of musical genres, female vocals, jazz, soul, funk, cosmic spacey weirdness, disco, it has everything. I've always wanted to find a bargain cheap UK pressing for this but never found one, so I've had to go without. Then recently I stumbled across this copy on a killer 5 minute British 7 inch and nearly died of excitement. I think some tunes defy fashionable listening and this is one such record.


I was lucky enough to have Jason Piccioni - son of Pierro Piccioni on my radio show recently. As a result I was introduced to lots of Piccioni work I had not come across before. I mean there is a lot of it, the guy is just about up there with Morricone in terms of output, with hundreds of films scores, tv scores and more to his name. There's even a ballet. This is an album of collected Piccioni works spanning a few decades and covering the compositions he did for the director Francesco Rossi. Bloody marvellous it is too. There is everything I want here across the four sides, funny electronics, lovely music, sad things and some very good percussion.


In the good olde days of soundtrack collecting, this was a massively difficult LP to locate. The twins in Dean Street Records used to get all excited if one turned up in a collection. I have no idea why I am listening to this LP again, apart from the obvious reasons, like it's good. It could be the onset of Spring, or maybe the onset of my gin and tonic habit every evening.


I really wish I'd issued these recordings. Cut and paste like I've never heard before, like a strange stream of street consciousness. Arthur Harold Lipsett was a sound freak, he put together wild collages of found and discarded sound, and eventually started making films to accompany them. Like backward film making in a funny sort of way. Not only are the sounds fabulous, it's the timing that does it for me every time. I suggest you look Mr Lipsett up right away on line, and see his rare mid 1960s films. They are a major influence on all sorts of people and, apparently, his film 21-87 is where "The Force" from Star Wars originates. I love stories like that.


In January the real genuine complete original soundtrack to Harold And Maude was finally issued. Super. Really super. Vinyl Films who issued it went mental and put together a package the like of which I have never seen before. Like with books, pictures, posters. free singles, coloured wax, lyrics sheets blah blah blah. And just when you thought it couldn't get any more fabulous as a release, they go and press the whole album again just on picture disc just for "promotional purposes" when all the LPs have already sold. And this picture disk was sent out with a glow in the dark Harold And Maude slipmat, a strip of film from the original trailer, some personalised stickers and hey, nice work guys. Nice.


Yet another forgotten classic from the Trunk storage facility known as my sisters old garage. I remember buying this from a pound box outside a second hand clothes shop in Brighton, in the days when nearly every shop in Brighton near the station was selling old crap and lots of records. This is great comp, mainly for me because it has a song on it called Tequila, which is not what you think it is at all. Please note the dreadful typeface on this album.


If you ever want to revisit the mid to late 1970s, here is a very interesting modern way of doing just that. Musically, to my ears, this album is a strange mixture of the past I remember and the past I don't. My two year old son pokes the speakers when this is on. Last time he drove his wheeled lion right into the right woofer. Meanwhile I sit there sipping Mellow Birds.


Gruesome cover, lovely pastoral horror sounds from a man I know little about. And everyone loves a textured sleeve.


I haven't a clue who this Japanese person is. What I do know is that I really like the twisted music on this record, all wrong and all right at the same time. It sounds like they have put musical chalk with musical cheese and got away with it. Nearly every track was made for Japanese TV ads, for brands like Seiko, Honda, and yes, Boutique Joy. An added bonus here is the music for a video game included at the end of Side Two.


Actually Little Joe sure can't. There must be some Mafioso thing going on here, because no sane man would have given this man the job of singing, because he just can't. He's flat and terrible. And just not musical at all. Now I've said that I'll probably get rubbed out, garrotted in my little car as I go to pick up pesto from the local deli or something. His name on this LP by the way is Ritchie and not Pesci.


Originally I bought this for the track Poinsettia, from Jam Records in the Trocadero Centre, Piccadilly Circus. This is going back to 1992 I think. I listened to the track a lot. Then I shelved the LP and that was about it. A month ago I was lent a CD of rare and interesting jazz, on which was a track by Mr Hill called Illusion. I asked where it came from. And to my delight I found out it's on the old LP I bought in the Trocadero. It is now no longer on the shelf. I like the title and track even more now, you know, "Illusion", like I didn't see it first time even though it was there, now I


This was issued by Tartan on the Jodorowsky 6 DVD / CD monster box set. It's an extreme mixture of heaven and hell musically. I quite like the classical numbers, for example "Miniature Plastic Bomb Shop". I can't listen to this much though, it does bloody my head in.


This is on that ART label. Yeah, stick it on, lasts for ages, sounds like British people doing Detriot, and doing it very well indeed. I'm sure some techno person will email me with more info about ART, I'm thinking it might have been owned by someone musically interesting.


The man can be one of the most frightening modern classic composers out there. But I'm not really into being too scared at the moment, instead I have enjoyed his more straight, classical-cum-jazzy-like work such as his String Quartets and Bagatelles, which I was convinced were those old games you find at steam fairs with metal balls but I think that may well be a different spelling. The other great thing about Gyorgy is that he really looks cool.


Look, you can read all about this for yourself on the John Baker page. Amazing music. Really amazing.


Here is no way on earth I am ever going to get a real one of these Lps, so when I heard the Japanese had issued it on compact disc I went and got one. And very please I am too. Not only does it have one of the great, iconic jazz sleeves but it has to be one of the great, faultless sessions ever recorded. It's the unexpected rhythms that get me here.


The Japanese really do seem to be on it at the moment, and here's another killer they've just issued on vinyl, rare, pretty jazz of a very high order indeed. Stars Lasse Farnlof, who I have a big soft thing for.


The prices of rare and old soundtracks are fluctuating wildly these days, and mainly in a downward direction. Many of the BIG LPS are now selling for a fraction of their old values and really I'm not surprised, because fewer and fewer people care, the records aren't as rare as everyone first thought, reissues are all over the place and anyone with half a brain will realise that if you wait long enough, the price of that rare soundtrack LP will fall once everyone with more money or less sense than you has got one. That's what happened here I think, I would have loved a copy a few years ago when it was easily hitting three figures. But I waited. And then waited some more. And then I forgot about it completely. And then I remembered and then I got one on ebay for thirty five quid including the postage from Canada. And I like the LP even more as a result. The opening track here sounds just like What Time Is Love by the KLF, but a bit more jazz.


This was for sale at the record fair down the road. In a box of eps priced at three for a quid, four if you haggled. I mean just look at it. How could I leave it behind? What's also unusual is that the bloke who had obviously owned all the eps had taken the centres out of each record, lined the open end of the sleeve in sellotape, stuck on a handwritten code label (this one is 7WT/2 / J), and also stuck two other code stickers on the label on record itself. He was mental I reckon.


Yes, what a joy. It's all a joy, except for the old coffee stain on the front cover. Regulars to this site will know of my long term thingy with Karin Krog, and this is an LP I'd not heard. Here Karin plays about with her voice electronically, which I'm sure did quite a bit to annoy the old jazz massive. But jazz royalty like George Russell were on her side, and that's more than enough. Although she does go mental here a few times (sounds of a pet shop on fire etc) the glorious sexy ballad that is the title track is worth the entry price alone, and was written by Annete Peacock. Speaking of whom...


This is a recording of the Bley-Peacock Synthesiser Show. I stuck this on the recommendations page back in the Summer of 2000 because I was obsessed by the opening track on Side One. I am now obsessed by the opening track on Side Two (called Mr Joy) thanks to a weird night in with my mate Joel. Oh, the delights of LP collecting. I do feel sorry for all those kids getting into single tracks and MP3s. You need albums because the best bits are often those you hear when you are least expecting it. Here endeth the lesson.