Category Archives: Rock

SPLASHGIRL-HIBERNATION.

SPLASHGIRL-HIBERNATION. When doom jazz trio Splashgirl released their sophomore album Arbor in 2009, it was the first release on the newly formed Hubro Music label. Since then, a lot has happened to both Splashgirl and Hubro Music. Both Splashgirl and Hubro Music’s star have been in the ascendancy. Splashgirl have released two critically acclaimed albums, …

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MIKE OLDFIELD-DISCOVERY.

MIKE OLDFIELD-DISCOVERY. By June 1984, thirty-one year old Mike Oldfield prepared to release the ninth album of his career, Discovery. This was the followup to 1983s Crises, which was Mike Oldfield’s most successful album of recent years. Crises was certified platinum in Germany and Sweden; and gold in Britain, France and Holland. This surpassed the …

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JOHN MARTYN-A LIFE IN MUSIC REMEMBERED.

JOHN MARTYN-A LIFE IN MUSIC REMEMBERED. It’s hard to believe that it’s seven years since John Martyn passed away on 29th January 2009. Incredibly, John Martyn was only sixty years old. He seemed to have been around forever. John Martyn’s life revolved around music. His career began in 1967, when he was just seventeen. Back …

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BLACK SABBATH-MASTER OF REALITY-IMPORT.

BLACK SABBATH-MASTER OF REALITY-IMPORT. 1970 had been a year that defined Black Sabbath’s career. They’d released two hugely successful albums. This includes their debut album Black Sabbath, which was released in February 1970. It reached number eight in the UK and number twenty-three in the US Billboard 200 charts. This resulted in Black Sabbath being …

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EMMA POLLOCK-IN SEARCH OF HARPERFIELD.

EMMA POLLOCK-IN SEARCH OF HARPERFIELD. Most people haven’t heard of Castle Douglas. Why should they? It’s a small market town in Dumfries and Galloway, in south-west Scotland. However, Castle Douglas has been home to some famous faces over the last 224 years. This includes a potter, politician, footballer and two rugby players. However, they’ve been …

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IKARUS-IKARUS.

IKARUS-IKARUS. In Greek mythology, Icarus, the son of the master craftsman Daedalus, who created the Labyrinth, met a tragic ending. Icarus and Daedalus were desperate to escape from Crete. So Daedalus constructed wings made of feathers and wax. As Icarus prepared to make his escape, Daedalus warned his son of complacency and hubris.  Icarus shouldn’t …

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THE VELVET UNDERGROUND-LIVE AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY.

THE VELVET UNDERGROUND-LIVE AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY. 1970 should’ve been the start of a new era for The Velvet Underground. They had just signed a two album deal with Atlantic Records in late 1969. This should’ve been the dawn of a new era for The Velvet Underground, where they belatedly made a commercial breakthrough. Instead, …

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GURU GURU-UFO.

GURU GURU-UFO. By the late sixties, the members of many British and American bands were well on their way to becoming multi-millionaires. Especially groups like The Beatles and Rolling Stones. They had been at the top for the best part of a decade, and were now enjoying wealth beyond their wildest dreams.  To look after …

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IRMIN SCHMIDT-ELECTRO VIOLET BOX SET-IMPORT.

IRMIN SCHMIDT-ELECTRO VIOLET BOX SET-IMPORT. One of the most eagerly awaited box sets of 2015 was Irmin Schmidt’s twelve disc career retrospective, Electro Violet. It was released by Mute Records in December 2015. However, only 1,000 copies of Electro Violet were available. They were like gold dust and finding one of the Electro Violet box sets wasn’t …

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BLACK SABBATH-PARANOID-IMPORT.

BLACK SABBATH-PARANOID-IMPORT. Just seven months after Black Sabbath released their eponymous debut album in February 1970, they were back with the album that defined their career, Paranoid. It was released in September 1970 and features three Black Sabbath classics Paranoid, Iron Man and War Pigs. They’ve since become staples of Black Sabbath’s live performances. They’re …

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AGITATION FREE-2ND.

AGITATION FREE-2ND. Berlin, 1967. That was where the Agitation Free story began. That was when Lutz ‘Lüül’ Ulrich, Michael ‘Fame’ Günther, Lutz ‘Ludwig’ Kramer and Christoph Franke formed Agitation. This new band quickly established a reputation as one of the pioneers of Berlin’s underground music scene. When Agitation played live, their sets were like the …

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SUNBIRDS-ZAGARA.

SUNBIRDS-ZAGARA. Back in the seventies, the only German band most British people had heard of was Kraftwerk. A few more knowledgeable music lovers have heard of Can, and maybe, Neu!, Cluster or Harmonia. That however, was the extent of their knowledge of German music. That was a great shame, as Germany in the seventies, had …

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THE BEST LIVE ALBUMS OF 2015.

THE BEST LIVE ALBUMS OF 2015. The final category in my best of series is live albums. For some reason, live albums seem to divide opinion. While some people love live albums, others loathe them. There seems to be no middle ground. Partly that’s down to how an artist approaches a live album. It may be …

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THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 1.

THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 1.. The next stop in my look back at 2015, is the compilations released during the last twelve months. Again, I started with a long-list, and over the course of a few weeks, gradually, narrowed it down to fifty-five albums. That took some doing. After all, 2015 was a …

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THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 2.

THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 2. DISC0 2: A FURTHER FINE SELECTION OF INDEPENDENT DISCO, MODERN SOUL AND BOOGIE 1976-80. Just seven months after Soul Jazz Records released Disco: A Fine Selection of Independent Disco, Modern Soul and Boogie in November 2014, the London based label return with the sequel, Disco 2: A Further …

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THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 3.

THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 3. GROOVE WITH A FEELING-SOUNDS OF MEMPHIS-BOOGIE, SOUL AND FUNK 1975-1985.  By 1975, soul music was no longer as popular as it had once had been. Executives running the Sounds Of Memphis label realised this; and between 1975 and 1985, the label released a much more eclectic selection of …

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THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 4.

THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 4. KEB DARGE AND LITTLE EDITH’S LEGENDARY WILD ROCKERS VOLUME 5.   Summer wouldn’t be summer without the latest instalment of the Legendary Wild Rockers’ series. So, in May 2015, Keb Darge and Little Edith’s Legendary Wild Rockers Volume 5 was released by BBE Music.   Somehow, Keb Darge …

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THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 5.

THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 5. PRIVATE WAX VOLUME TWO. Private Wax Volume Two was released on BBE Music in October 2015. This is another compilation of “Super Rare Boogie and Disco Compiled By Zaflovevinyl.” Given their rarity, it’s no wonder it’s taken three years to compile Private Wax Volume Two. However, if anyone …

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THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 6.

THE FIFTY-FIVE BEST COMPILATIONS OF 2015-PART 6. SWEET THINGS FROM THE ELLIE GREENWICH AND JEFF BARRY SONGBOOK. Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry formed what would prove to one of the Brill Building’s most successful songwriting partnerships. So much so, that it’s taken Ace Records three compilations to celebrate the Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry partnership. …

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THE BEST 50 REISSUES OF 2015-PART ONE.

THE BEST 55 REISSUES OF 2015-PART ONE. The next stop in my look back at 2015, is the reissues released during the last twelve months. Again, I started with a long-list, and over the course of a few weeks, gradually, narrowed it down to fifty albums. These albums are an eclectic selection, and cover an …

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