- WHAT'S RATTLIN' ?
:: The Weekly
Digest for Canterbury Music
Monday, July 19th,
A WEEKEND "CHEZ JACKY", BRESSE-SUR-GROSNE
JULY 16/17, 1999
Jacky Barbier's club "A L'Ouest de la Grosne" is
well-known to lovers of the Canterbury scene, since several
recordings made at that lovely country club in the middle of
Burgundy were the basis of many an important album - starting with
Soft Head's "Rogue Element" in 1978, then Hugh Hopper and Richard
Sinclair's duo album "Somewhere in France" in 1983, and even a bit
from Gong's "Shapeshifter" album (not on the US version I'm
Anyway... Jacky was celebrated his club's 25th anniversary
last week. I was only informed of this last Monday, so I'm sorry
if any of you couldn't make the gigs due to the late notice. I
only attended the last two nights, so I missed a few excellent
gigs such as Faton Cahen's quintet. But I did see what I obviously
most wanted to see - the Canterbury guys.
The line-up wasn't exactly the one originally announced.
Early programs stated Elton Dean would be there, but he was lost
to a weeklong jazz course somewhere in England. Similarly, Didier
Malherbe was absent, although I understand he did drop by briefly
earlier in the week. So we were left with a most unusual quartet -
John Greaves on vocals, piano and bass; Patrice Meyer on guitar;
Hugh Hopper on bass; and Pip Pyle on drums.
With such a line-up we were inevitably in for something
unusual. I wondered if I should expect a pure jamming gig, but
following Friday afternoon's rehearsal the guys came up with a
loose musical "concept" - a mixture of John Greaves songs and
various instrumental pieces. Strangely enough John was featured
mostly on piano, even on the instrumentals - his unique style gave
a special flavour to those pieces; on others he played bass
together with Hugh Hopper.
As Shyamal Maitra too couldn't make it, this Quartet also
played on the Saturday night, playing the same set with minor
changes in the order - but basically the order was this:
Fa Si La (P.Meyer)
The Green Fuse (J.Greaves - text: Dylan Thomas)
Instrumental Piece (P.Pyle) [not sure about the title]
Miniluv (H.Hopper) / How Beautiful You Are
Dead Dog Dingo (P.Pyle) [another new instrumental piece]
Instrumental Piece (P.Meyer) [not sure about the title
For Bearings/Silence (J.Greaves/P.Blegvad)
Big Dick (P.Lemer) [a piece from the current In Cahoots
Seven For Lee (E.Dean)
The Song (J.Greaves/P.Blegvad)
A couple of observations:
- As far as I remember, the pieces with both Greaves and
Hopper on bass were the Pip Pyle instrumentals; quite unexpectedly
Hugh's pieces (even "Miniluv"!) featured Greaves on piano... A
particularly nice segue was "Miniluv" into "How Beautiful You
Are", something I would never have dreamed of hearing one day!
- "The Green Fuse" featured John Greaves with the sole
accompaniment of Patrice Meyer's guitar. The first night's
rendition was notable for being cut short by John due to a couple
of very drunk youths chatting loudly in the second row. After he
got them to calm down a bit, he resumed the song.
The two sets were followed by extended jam sessions that
went on well into the night (I went to sleep at about 4am each
morning). The first night featured Charles Loos, a Belgian pianist
that will be known to some as an original member of Cos (with
Pascale Son on vocals) - starting with jazz standards in duo with
Patrice Meyer. They were joined by a local 6-string bass player,
then by Pip Pyle on drums. John Greaves joined in for some
unrelated, but highly captivating recitations. A great moment was
his delivering the lyrics to "All The Things You Are" while the
others were playing "Moon River"...
A second jam had former Art Zoyd guitarist Alain Eckert
(who incidentally almost replaced Dave Stewart in National Health
- I guess no one was aware of this...) joining Charles Loos, Hugh
Hopper and Pip Pyle for an extended jam. Also featured was
flautist Chrystelle Blanc-Lanaute, a friend of Hugh's he met while
she was living in England - she can be heard on Hugh's last two
releases, Hughscore's "Delta Flora" and Hopper/Kloessner's
"Different". Hugh's wife Christine almost joined in on trumpet on
the second night but apparently was too hesitant to do so. Too
On the second night, a local blues band was drafted in at
the last minute to make up for Shyamal Maitra's absence. And after
the Canterbury all-stars played their two sets, some more jamming
took place. The band was getting tighter, and Elton Dean's "Seven
For Lee" had some highly inspired jamming from the quartet and
returning guest Alain Eckert. Another unexpected guest was tenor
sax player Eric Prost from Collectif Mu, an innovative jazz band
whose albums are out on Magma's Seventh Records label.
I was able to chat a bit with everyone and ask them about
their upcoming projects.
* Hugh Hopper is finishing his second album with Lisa S.
Kloessner, which he promises will have more real instruments on
it, including Pip Pyle on four tracks, and Elton Dean on one
(actually from the first CD's sessions).
* Patrice Meyer is thinking of a new solo album (at last!)
to be recorded live with his current trio.
* John Greaves is recording "Songs 2" which he hopes to
have finished by September - it will be quite unlike the first,
with John himself singing all the vocals and playing piano and
bass, with Francois Ovide on electric guitars, and Manuel Denizet
on drums. The contents will be all new songs by himself, except
one by Peter Blegvad from "Just Woke Up". Voiceprint will also be
releasing a live recording from a solo gig John played in Japan in
June of last year.
* Lastly, Pip Pyle has few projects for the near future -
he will be joining US group Absolute Zero for an autumn tour and
possibly some recordings; and he told me Phil Miller is working on
a "blues project" which he'd started working on last year hoping
his brother would live to play on it. The new Miller-Baker album
is apparently ready for release, but sadly there are no In Cahoots
plans for the near future.
I guess these performances will remain a one-off for those
involved, but they will remain a great memory for those lucky to
be present. As far as I'm concerned, I guess it was worth the
three-hour drive !
Subject: Re: Facelift
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999 12:08:17 EDT
David MacLennan <David.Maclennan@moc.govt.nz> and a
bunch of others wrote [some to me privately - please
keep it ON WR & not in my private mailbox, ok?? - thanks] :
>Great news about Cuneiform's release of the Soft
Machine "Noisette" live
>set, but I have a couple of comments that maybe Steve
at Cuneiform might
>care to address.
>First, he says that Facelift won't be included because
it's already on SM3.
>Surely, though, it would be better to have the
COMPLETE concert, Facelift
>'n' all? I'm sure most fans would prefer
this. Or do they want to keep it
>as a single disc for cost reasons?
It has nothing to do with cost. It has to do with the fact
that Facelift [but NOT the rest of the concert] is owned by
CBS/Sony, who are not in the habit of licensing material to little
I've been down this licensing road before, & don't
wish to waste my time again. I'm sorry if that's dissapointing,
but that's the unfortunate business reality.
>Steve then goes on to say that the sound quality of
the tapes is excellent,
>far better-sounding that Facelift does on SM3.
>Now surely this clinches the argument for including
Facelift on Noisette?
>I'm sure we'd all like a definitive recording of this
Yes, but there is no way to GET a definitive version -
because the version we all know on Third is HEAVILY edited &
processed - and all for the SIGNIFICANTLY better, as those who
have heard the undoctored tapes can attest [Aymeric - care to
The version of Facelift that we all know sounds just like
the version on Third - hissier & less "full" sounding due to
the serious "mucking about" performed on the tapes at that time,
using copies several generations removed from the master. It
*does* not sound as good as the rest of the [undoctored] tapes
that we will be releasing - no reason to release that, since it
would be exactly the same as found on Third [no improvement in
sound], & the UNdoctored tapes are inferior in overall
performance - no reason to release that either.
And that's without even discussing the licensing
Additionally, for everyone's information, there isn't any
way to give the absolute FULL concert - because the four original
15 ips reels each ran out during the concert - this makes for some
gaps in the recording that we will be doing our best to "fix" by
editing parts together. So, it's not going to be a "full concert"
like Virtually was. It's going to be a reasonable approximation of
most of the concert. That's the best we can do with what we have.
Thanks for the input, but sorry to say, the answer is
*definitely* no - Facelift will not be on the CD.
From: Rich Williams <email@example.com>
Subject: Blegvad/Syd Straw
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999 16:27:46 -0400
[In WR#133, Xavier Marchon wrote:]
>I think it's needless to present John Greaves here,
but many may not have
>heard of Syd Straw until now. Though her connections
with the Canterbury
>family can be found many years before :
>Finally, Syd Straw contributes backing vocals on some
tracks of Blegvad's
>album King Strut' (1990). I didn't find another trace
>between them until these 2 concerts at the Hotel du
Straw and Blegvad were mainstays of the Golden Palomino's
touring line-up from 85-88:
The Golden Palomino's (Live Band)
Anton Fier Drums
Peter Blegvad Guitar Vocals
Syd Straw Vocals
Lisa Herman Vocals, Keyboards
Jody Harris Guitar
Chris Stamey Bass
The band also usually featured guest artists such as:
Carla Bley Organ
Michael Stipe Vocals
Arto Lindsay Guitar,Vocals
Jack Bruce Bass, Vocals
But, more to the point, the above line-up also did some
gigging under the moniker "Peter Blegvad & Friends" or as "The
Diving Ducks". During these performances the material leaned
pretty heavily on the Blegvad catalog, even including some Slapp
Happy material, Their performances were among the best I've ever
heard from Peter, And he always seemed to be thrilled to be
leading such a "Stellar Crew" as he put it.
Some Canterbury related discs still available at
From: gong-gas <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: GAS Rolling Flyer-July 99
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 99 11:54:07 +0000
Gong have a new drummer. Chris Taylor, of Soul II Soul and
Roachford, completed the European gigs after Pierre had to leave
the tour. He filled in at very short notice, learnt the set on the
hoof and played superbly throughout. This meant that there were 3
new members of the band (Mark Hewins, Theo Travis and Chris) on
the European dates.
The music was great, new levels of light and shade brought
the well-known Gong tunes into a completely different relief and
when the new line-up stretched out everything changed yet again
into exciting new dimensions. Chris and Mark then continued on to
the North American Gong tour where Didier came into to replace
Theo (who had other committments).
Everything spun into further free-form in Japan (this time
Chris, Didier and Mike Howlett were previously engaged) and the
‘Gong Family’ were represented by the trio of Daevid, Hugh Hopper
and Chris Cutler and Gilli’s Goddess T line-up, with Mark Hewins
playing wih both bands. Are you still following this, or have we
lost you on the bend? Anyway, all I know is the gigs I saw in
Europe were tremendous and reports from North America and Japan
sound even more positive.
Hicups on the GAS web-site. With summer comes lure of good
weather, and camps and gatherings of all sorts,. The result is
that the web-site has been sadly neglected of late. (Tim Flatus
sends the message that “he’s having an operation....to have his
head removed from his arse, and will be in soon”). Deep apologies
for this, remedies are being put in place, so it’s less lightly to
happen in the future.
GIGS and EVENTS
DAEVID ALLEN’S UNIVERSITY OF ERRORS
Jul 22 - Portland, Or.: Berbati's Pan
Rockin' Teenage Combo & The Gone Orchestra)
Jul 23 - Seattle, Wa.: The Rainbow
Rockin' Teenage Combo)
Jul 24 - Eugene, Or.: Sam Bond's Garage
Jul 25 - Eugene, Or, 455 West 1st Ave.
Gals @ Center for Appropriate Transport)
Jul 27 - San Francisco: Bottom Of The Hill
Full Moon Party, with Rockin' Teenage Combo & Azigza)
Jul 20 - Bristol, Fleece & Firkin [info:
Jul 22 - Swindon, Victoria [info: 01793-535-7143]
Jul 23 - Narberth, Queen’s Hall [info: 01834-861-212]
Jul 24 - Tiverton, The Tube [info: 01884-258-534]
Jul 25 - Colchester, Arts Centre [info: 01206-500-900]
Jul 26 - London / Putney, Half Moon [info: 0171-780-9393]
or other London
Jul 27 - Brighton, The Ray Tindle Centre [info:
Jul 28 - Bath, Window Arts Centre [info: 01225-421-700]
Jul 29 - Liskard, Sterts [info: 01579-362-382]
Jul 30 - Cheltenham, Axiom Centre [info: 01242-253-183]
STEFFE’S new psychedelic trance set in an evening of live
techno, trance & dub with other acts.
Jul 28 - London / Fulham, Kings Head (tbc)
THE MAGICK BROTHERS
Aug 01 - Buxton, Badam Festival
(Two day festival which also includes Hawkwind, Banco de
Gaia, Arthur Brown, Bedouin, Spacehead (with Graham Clark),
Tony McPhee, Magic Mushroom Band & loads, loads more - info:
01298-77280 or mailto:email@example.com)
Aug 05 - Southampton: Talking Heads
Aug 06 - Cheltenham: Axiom Centre. info: 01242-690-243]
Aug 07 - Bath: Window Arts Centre
Aug 10 - Cornwall, Fowey: Eclipse Camp (9th-15th Aug)
15 mins walk from beach. Bands
each night. info: 01726-870-375]
Aug 11 - Cornwall, Nr Penzance: Moon Shadow Camp. info:
Aug 13 - Dorset, Wimbourne: Gaunts House Gathering.
(GLOBAL follow Magick Brother on stage)
Aug 14 - Dorset, Wimbourne: Gaunts House
(Daevid workshop-to be confirmed
(Day tickets are available for this
great children friendly gathering.
(info: 01202-841-522 /
Aug 25 - Full Moon Camp (Tallamh Community, Birkhill
House, Coalburn, Lanarkshire, ML11 0NJ - also with Daevid
The Planet Gong gig below is linked to this camp as well.
Beginning Sept Possibly Austrian and
Italian dates (tba)
Info on Magick Brother dates (or you want to book one):
(aka Daevid with Here & Now and special guest Mark
The full on psychedelic space-punk experience on the Full
is this the perfect set?
Aug 26 - Edinburgh, Carlton Studios (Carlton Rd)
Aug 26 - Edinburgh, Carlton Studios (Carlton Rd)
Aug 29 - Haute-Loire (France), Festival
Oct 15-17 - 2/3 UK dates (tba)
Oct 18 - Leverkusen (Germany), Jazz Tage (tbc)
Oct 20 - Nancy (France), Chapiteau de la Pepinière [Jazz
Magma, Annie Whitehead R.Wyatt project)
(I'm not sure what the line-up for these Gong gigs will
be. Chris Taylor will remain, I think, and Mark is busy. There is
a strong possibility of Theo and Didier playing together in the
band and maybe there will be a new guitarist.)
RETURN OF THOM TOUR 1999 (pre-Milennial fever!)
Jul 21 - Lismore (Australia), Lismore Club
Jul 31 - Brisbane (Australia), Boundry Hotel (West End)
Aug 20-21 - Cleveland (USA), Strange Daze Festival
(Thom MCs and improvising fhule -
book through Jim Lascko at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sep 09 - London, Vice Verso
Oct 20 - Cheltenham, Literature Festival (with Jean Binter
Gigs, shelter and support welcomed for this travelling
troubadour world poet!
mailto:email@example.com or tel (USA) 512-416-7435
Some of the events below may come to be, others inevitably
will fall by the wayside or happen in dimensions beyond our gaze,
but they are all being talked through now.
PLANET GONG : USA Tour Plans being hatched for Daevid,
Steffe, Keith Missile, Steve Cassidy & Mark Robson to bring
the perfect, anarchic, space-punk set/band to the States. Oh Ali
Baba, Ali Baba....make it so.
GONGMATRIX : US dates in October. Gilli, Pierce on bass,
James on Keys and programming, Aryeh on electric violin, harp and
GONG 2000 : Israel gigs, European Tour, S. American Tour.
Further updates on the Gong/GAS website (hopefully).
* * * *
NEW RELEASES - order info:
Goddess T - "Electric Shiatzu" (Voiceprint)
Gilli Smyth, Orlando Allen, Tone with Daevid guesting
throughout on gliss produce organic dance music unlike any
Brainville - "The Children’s Crusade" (Shimmy Disc)
Daevid, Hugh Hopper, Kramer and Pip Pyle together as
Mind-bending psychedelic noise. Hard yet gentle, heavy yet
You want beautiful extremes... you got them here.
Daevid Allen’s University of Errors - "Money Doesn’t Make
Imagine Gong’s Continental Circus crossed with New York
Gong and a
splash of Camembert
and you have a picture of this release.
A Rhythmic gliss and guitar fest.
Here & Now "Gospel of Free-Live 76-78" (GAS) [mid
Kangaroo Moon "In Transit" [late August]
Russell Hibbs (with bonus Daevid tracks)- ? (Voiceprint)
Hawkwind (with Tim Blake) "The Complete Live 79" (Hawks)
Didier Malherbe’s Hadouk - 2nd CD [finishing artwork]
Daevid Allen’s University of Errors- 2nd CD (Inner Space)
Tim Blake "Crystal Island" (Voiceprint) [recording]
Steffe new CD [recording]
Invisible Opera Co. of Tibet new CD [recording]
Anima Rising (Steffe/Cheryl Newsam)- ? [to be mixed]
Daevid Allen-Seven Drones [mixing/artwork]
Daevid Allen’s University of Errors- 3rd CD (Inner Space)
Lady June/Mark Hewins "Rebela" [to be mixed]
Tim Blake "New Jurusalem" (Voiceprint) [reissue]
Bubbled Up On Dub- Vol 2 (Gliss) [seeded]
22 Meanings Special Subscription CD-Well we finally got it
all together. Sorry about the monsterous delay, all manner of
things slowed this process down. They will be with you soon. There
are about 10-15 copies of the limited edition of 100 left. Get in
touch if you are interested.
1999 GAS tape-ditto the above for any of you waiting for
the 1999 GAS tape. The one good result of the delay is there are
now some very recent musical gems included on the tape.
Next GAS mag-Will be out before the end of Summer. If you
have any contributions, photographs, illustrations or anything for
the personal ads please contact us.
* * * *
Surrealist Proverb for today: Faithful as a filleted Cat.
From: Michael Rae <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Ozrics report & Frith video
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 1999 14:04:12 -0400 (EDT)
A couple things to report in on.
First of all, I went to Cleveland, OH to see the Ozric
Tentacles at The Odeon; opening for them was a group called The
Star People, all of them suavely-dressed! They reminded me of a
cross between King Crimson and Cocktail Lounge Music, and overall
they were very good musically. It's kinda hard to describe the
mayhem of an Ozrics performance, so I won't really try, but the
balance of music & lights were once again phenomenal, the band
was really on, and the 2 hour set was excellent, with plenty of
older gems mixed in with the powerful new material...I recollect
"Eternal Wheel" and "China Type" as amongst the older pieces.
Great show, but, as always, the 4-1/2 hour drive back home just
The next day, I visited an old friend, who had just
received his recent order from Wayside Music. I was in luck; he
had not watched his recent video acquisition, "Step Across the
Border" the wonderful documentary on Fred Frith... God, I had
waited 8-9 years to see this film!!!! And now, here it was, in the
convenience of videotape!!! Anyway, the film itself did not
disappoint, but most annoying was the fact that the video reached
its end before the film actually ended!! Golly, WTF!! And my
friend had laid out $35 US for this; makes ya wonder if THE WHOLE
BATCH is defective...I don't wish to cause controversy here, but
having NOT seen the film before, I have no idea HOW MUCH of the
end is missing. And, seeing that the product IS DEFECTIVE, will
there be steps taken TO REPLACE the defective item; after all, it
would be nice to see the end of the film. DAME, Wayside, any
By the way, the recent inquisitions/submissions into The
Henry Cow archives were most illuminating; besides owning
"Concerts" the only other live 'Cow that I have is from a French
show in 1977... not the greatest quality, I fear, but still
listenable with some dashes of EQ, and, I suppose, a must
for those die-hard HC fans... I hope something can be salvaged
from the old archives, as I think most would be willing to forego
'pristine' sound quality in exchange for "the goods" especially in
terms of unreleased material, either composed or improvised.
Well, that's about it for now; I'll wait a bit before I
consider spending $35 for my own copy of The Fred film.
Thanks for keepin' WR rolling along...
[As Chris Cutler mentioned in the last issue, work is
indeed underway on a collection of unreleased Henry Cow material.
Stay tuned... - AL]
END OF ISSUE 134
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