From 1970. Side 1 features a selection of stereophonic musical excerpts with irritating descriptive interjections by American narrator. Side 2 is a grab-bag of field recordings – sports cars, fire engines, subway trains, canons, etc…
Back in 1980, when this record was released, I probably thought Kenny Everett was the funniest, most anarchic, irreverent, saucy, outrageous, cutting-edge comedian working in mainstream entertainment. But what did I know? I was only 11 years old!
But still, I have fond memories of the Kenny Everett Video Show, from whence the Captain Kremmen character, along with his sidekicks Lady Carla and Doktor Heinrich Von Gitfinger, were born, as an animated feature. This is a Wireless Workshop production, featuring lots of electronic special effects, but Everett remains the star of the show, providing all the voices for the various characters. It still has a few moments worth a chuckle, but clearly humour could be a lot different back then. Here’s a typical ‘gag’ from the record…
CARLA: Captain!! I’ve just been graped!!
KREMMEN: Don’t you mean raped?
CARLA: No, there was a whole bunch of ’em!
The storyline for this futuristic sci-fi romp was set in the year 2009, which makes me feel even older than I already did…
Time to bring it all down baby – all that Latin stuff is wearing the carpet out – not to mention if I keep up all this wigging-out to Bossa-grooves -the old ticka will for sure pack up on me ..
So where next on this journey into musty-sleeved-sound – well nothing better to get grounded than a pristine vinyl copy (the sleeve is however a tad tattered) of this 1970 Hallmark-Pickwick release of master recordist K. G. Attwood documenting the dying days of the steam-locomotive in various parts of England – most being recorded between 1968-9. Whilst other mind-experimenters-of-sound were locked in dark studios – fiddlng with reverse-tape-echo, spring-reverbs and the like – Attwood was positioned at some station or crossing – armed with some damn tasty equipment (here we go tech nerds: UHER 4200 recorder, Sennheiser MD 421 / AKG D224 microphones) – he has captured in mind-shattering stereo – some absolutely outstanding field-recordings of a time long past. I know I know – all sounds like my fetish with the bird recording stuff – but – I love a good sounding – non-processed recording of outdoor sounds – and this is such a beast … hop on board and ride ……
Picked this up in Crewkerne, Somerset this afternoon – been playing it all day since – scares the 3 year-old in the house to bits …. and on head-phones is a quite an out-of-body experience (really)….
Time to stick on Last Train to Trancentral (KLF008R) by the KLF and go for the train-spotters mix from hell … If you see it – grab it – you know it makes sense !!
Bird Recognition – An Aural Index (Victor C. Lewis).
3 disc boxset with booklet – Mono – 7EG 8926-7-8 – 1966
I must admit to absolutly loving these discs …. forget all that Eno-esque,synth-laden,new-ageism ambient tosh – pleeeazze…- sorry – but if I feel like a bit of relaxation , nothing does it much better that a disc of naturally recorded real-world sounds – and yes – the sounds of birds in the English countryside do it for me…
Split over three 7 inchers is a detailed analysis of some 47 species of bird and 187 individual recordings covering a very-wide range of chirping emotions (we got the lot here – alarm, flight, song, sub-song, mating, roosting, feeding etc etc).
This boxset is one of a series of 3 – covering various types of birds in a grouping of various types of habitat – all recorded in the late 1950s and early 1960s they are a snap-shot of a more quiet era long since lost …. as stated in the excellent book included “Due to the advent of the jet-aircraft, and the present-day multiplicity of man-made noise generally, good quality natural history sound recordings are fast becoming virtually impossible ….”
Victor C Lewis has left a stonker of an archive of recordings spread over numerous musty slabs of plastic – that I am slowly hunting down – this box cost me 50 pence – bargin or what !!
Anyway – here is the recordist in his studio – NICE !!
<<<< A SPEAKER TO SPEAKER TRIP IN THRILLING SPATIAL STEREO >>>>
<<<<<< SPATIAL STEREO >>>>>>>
The London Philharmonic Orchestra with Pipe Organ and Electronic Synthesizer Effects.
Love the Pipe Organ bit – no idea where that pops into this – but the synth is all over with squelchy throbbing white noise stuff – on top of a pretty standard interpretation of the old ‘space’ classics by the London Philharmonic Orchestra…
A snip for 20 new-pence in Taunton yesterday afternoon – bought 2 space-themed discs yesterday – the other will be reviewed very soon when I work out how best to scan the many-many pages !!
Anyway – if you only had an mp3 of this you too could (as stated on the reverse of the sleeve) – “Take an audio trip into space”…
Electronic Sounds and Effects for Electronic Music (Judd)
An amazing demonstration disc of the basic sounds of electronic sources circa 1967 – pure sine/square/pulse tones at various throbbing cycles … unfiltered white noise – ring-modulation of sine waves – electronically controlled attack/delay/reverb/echo – mechanical spring-line reverberation, echo by means of mag-tape feedback, reversed-echo weirdness – and some uber-cool experiments using tape-loops – that with a suitable back-beat would not be amiss in any minimal-tech night …
A complete scan of the whole of the October 1967 Practical electronics issue written by F.C. Judd can be grabbed here.
The added beauty of this disc is that I found it for free – stuck inside a disc of bird song recording – more of which will be posted real real soon … !