You say tomato, I say Tormato

Madrigal – Yes (1978) 192KHz/24bit FLAC 4K Video ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Madrigal” was released on Yes’ ninth studio album, Tormato, in September of 1978. This is a beautiful tune from the album that features Rick Wakeman playing a Thomas Goff harpsichord. Hoping to get a couple more videos I’ve started for other tracks from Tormato finished soon. This one features a few clips (I’ve enhanced HDR levels for more vibrancy) from Lech Majewski’s wonderfully gorgeous and unusual 2011 film, The Mill and The Cross which is a movie surrounding and set-inside the painting The Way to Calvary (1564) by Pieter Bruegel the Elder. I absolutely love the imagery this film creates, check it out if you’ve not seen it.

Frow Wiki:
It is their last album recorded with singer Jon Anderson and keyboardist Rick Wakeman prior to their departure from the group in 1980. After wrapping their tour in support of their previous album, Going for the One (1977), the band gathered in London in February 1978 to record a new album. The band encountered several issues that hindered its potential including their overall direction, the decision to produce it by themselves, and its uneven quality.

Tormato received a mixed critical reception upon release, but was a commercial success. It peaked at No. 8 in the UK and No. 10 in the US. “Don’t Kill the Whale” was released as a single in the UK which reached No. 36. Tormato continued to sell in the US and is certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America for selling over one million copies. Yes supported the album with the commercially successful 1978–79 tour with concerts performed in the round. Tormato was remastered for CD in 1994 and 2004; the latter contains several previously unreleased tracks from the album’s recording sessions.

As with Going for the One, the album’s cover was designed by Hipgnosis but retains the band’s logo designed by Roger Dean. Howe pitched the album’s original title of Yes Tor, referring to Yes Tor, the second highest hill on Dartmoor, an area of moorland in Devon, England. Wakeman claimed to have thrown a tomato at the pictures taken for the album as he recalled the band were disappointed with the initial artwork which had cost a lot of money. The album’s title and cover was changed accordingly. Wakeman said the album became a “tragedy” as it had poor artwork and production, but good music. Howe said it was someone at Hipgnosis who threw the tomato on purpose, something that he felt insulted about. According to White, the band “couldn’t decide on the cover. I think Po … put a picture of a guy with divining sticks on the front. He took it home one night and decided it wasn’t working. So he threw a tomato at it”.

The sleeve includes a photograph of the band that was taken in Regent’s Park, London, with each member wearing a bomber jacket and sunglasses and looking in a different direction. Each jacket was labelled with the member’s name on the front, but Squire had forgotten his and had to wear one labelled “Jim”, belonging to tour manager Jim Halley. The word “Chris” was then drawn onto the final cover.

[Lyrics]
I will be there said my friend of a distant life
Covered in greens of a golden age, set in stone
Follow me “he sounded of dreams supreme” follow me
Drifting within the glow and the after-glow of the eve

And if that firelight, I could match the inner flame

Sacred ships do sail the seventh age

Cast off your garments of fear, replace them with love
Most of all play with the game of the age
Highest of places remain all as one with you
Giving us light and the freedom of the day

And if that firelight, I could match the inner flame

Sacred ships do sail the seventh age
And have always been here

Celestial travelers have always been here with us
Set in the homes of the Universe we have yet to go
Countless expansions will arrive and flow inside of us
My friend, he of fantasy, dancing with the spirit of the age

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“It’s been a lifetime…”

Before The Dawn – Judas Priest (1978) Audio Fidelity 24k FLAC 4K Video ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Before The Dawn” was released on Judas Priest’s fifth studio album, Killing Machine, in November 1978. “Before The Dawn” has always been one of my absolute top favorite rock and roll ballads and this video is an update for one of the first videos I ever made: https://youtu.be/OVMiki-oApA

I attempted to follow my challenge for updates and always to try and keep some of the older elements in place while upgrading for higher resolution and better effect, so that at least some parts of the original remained intact…in this case not much came across but a couple of images and the old, simple cloud/fog effect that I tried to use back then (much more subdued here, but in higher resolution).

This version also sources a flac audio track from Audio Fidelity’s 24k release of the album which was remastered by Steve Hoffman….it’s a great sounding track, and I touched the volume level just enough to keep under any clipping.

Killing Machine was re-titled Hell Bent for Leather for US release, as the US branch of Columbia/CBS did not like the “murderous implications” of the album title. “The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown)” an early Fleetwood Mac cover, was added to the running order in the US. The album saw Judas Priest head towards a more commercial style; however it did still contain the dark lyrical themes as heard in their previous albums. At about the same time, the band members adopted their now-famous “leather-and-studs” image.

This is the first Judas Priest album where Glenn Tipton incorporated the guitar technique of tapping into his soloing style. This is also the final album for drummer Les Binks who had joined the band in late 1977 for the recording of Stained Class, he is credited with helping develop the traditional Priest percussive sound.

With Killing Machine, Judas Priest began moving to a more accessible, commercial format that abandoned the complex, fantasy-themed songs of their previous three albums. While this album still had dark undertones, it was more grounded in realism. This was reflected in their change of stage costumes from flowing Gothic robes to leather, but also may have been inspired by the rising punk and New Wave movements. Glenn Tipton said in a contemporary interview that “I believe we are part of the New Wave. After all, we’re fast, aggressive and exciting, which is what it’s all about.” Tracks such as “Burnin’ Up” and “Evil Fantasies” are replete with S&M themes while “Running Wild” is about late-night partying and “Before the Dawn” a depressing ballad. “Hell Bent for Leather” reflected their newly adopted leather costumes as well as Rob Halford’s soon-to-be-trademark entrances on stage in a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. The single “Take on the World” was an attempt at producing a stadium shoutalong tune in the mould of Queen’s “We Will Rock You”, and was also covered by New Wave band The Human League on their 1980 tour.

If the lyrics were simplified a bit from the band’s previous albums and adapted more into mainstream arena rock, the instruments retained their characteristic aggressiveness with heavier guitar riffing and elements of blues influence returned on some songs. The album is certified gold by the RIAA. Finally, the production of Killing Machine was markedly improved from Judas Priest’s earlier albums, which were criticized for having excessively flat sound, and would be further refined for their next and breakthrough album, British Steel.

The album was remastered in 2001, with two bonus tracks added (three in the UK). The bonus track “Fight for Your Life” was the “original” version of Judas Priest’s “Rock Hard Ride Free” from their Defenders of the Faith album. “The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown)” is considered a bonus track on the UK remaster, but a regular track on the US version.

In 2010, audiophile label Audio Fidelity released a limited-edition 24-karat gold CD of the album. Mastering was done by Steve Hoffman. This does not contain the bonus tracks from the 2001 edition.

[Lyrics]
Before the dawn, I hear you whisper
In your sleep “Don’t let the morning take him”
Outside the birds begin to call
As if to summon up my leaving

It’s been a lifetime since I found someone
Since I found someone who would stay
I’ve waited too long, and now you’re leaving
Oh please don’t take it all away

It’s been a lifetime since I found someone
Since I found someone who would stay
I’ve waited too long, and now you’re leaving
Oh please don’t take it all away

Before the dawn, I hear you whisper
In your sleep “Don’t let the morning take him”

“On the step outside you stand…With your flowers in your hand, my Apple Scruffs..”

Apple Scruffs – George Harrison (1970) 96KHz/24bit FLAC 4K Video ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Apple Scruffs” was released in November 1970 on George Harrison’s massive musical monument, the 3-album All Things Must Pass album. Continuing with more videos from one of my favorite albums. My idea was to use clips from Beatlemania to represent the “Apple Scruffs” but I liked the groovy dancers better! 😉

From Wiki:

The name “Apple scruffs” was first coined by George Harrison during the late 1960s. Although well known for his aversion to fan worship, particularly to the Beatlemania phenomenon, Harrison had formed a bond with a number of the scruffs; he acknowledged in an April 1969 interview with Disc magazine: “their part in the play is equally as important as ours”. His song “Apple Scruffs” was written as a tribute to the fans who had kept vigil outside the various recording studios he had been working in since late May 1970, during the sessions for his All Things Must Pass triple album, as well as the Apple headquarters on Savile Row. Although Harrison makes no mention of the song in his 1980 autobiography, Derek Taylor, in his role as editor, describes the Apple scruffs as the “central core” of fans, long after Beatlemania had subsided, adding that “We were all very fond of them”.

Harrison invited the Apple scruffs into Abbey Road Studios to hear the results. A teenager at the time, Gill Pritchard later recalled that Harrison told them: “Well, you had your own magazine, your own office on the [studio] steps, so why not your own song?”

The recording has been noted for its Bob Dylan influence, featuring Harrison on acoustic guitar and harmonica, and is recognized as a departure from the big sound synonymous with All Things Must Pass. “Apple Scruffs” was also released as the B-side to “What Is Life”, gaining further popularity through airplay on US radio, and became the preferred side of the single in some countries.

Harrison recorded “Apple Scruffs” late in the proceedings, during the overdubbing and mixing phase of All Things Must Pass. Uniquely among the tracks on All Things Must Pass, “Apple Scruffs” was performed solo by Harrison – except for a percussive, tapping sound provided by Beatles assistant Mal Evans. Harrison recorded the song live on acoustic guitar and harmonica, in the style of his friend Bob Dylan. Due to his heavy beard and mustache, Harrison struggled while attempting to play the harmonica; sessions tapes also reveal he needed to coach himself on the sucking and blowing technique required for the part.

Rolling Stone’s Ben Gerson considered “Apple Scruffs” to be “One of the most wonderful cuts on the album” and added: “it sounds as if it was recorded while co-producer Phil Spector was out for coffee.”

More recently, Beatles author Bruce Spizer has written of the song: “Sandwiched in the middle of an album full of elaborate wall-of-sound productions, Apple Scruffs breaks through like a breath of fresh air.” Simon Leng praises the track’s bottleneck parts, and particularly the backing vocals, which he describes as “the best on the album”. The same passage, towards the end of the song, has been referred to by Tom Moon in his book 1,000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die as “an explosive peak-experience refrain that comes direct from heaven’s songbook”.

In a 2001 review for the 30th anniversary reissue of All Things Must Pass, James Hunter of Rolling Stone highlighted “Apple Scruffs” among other tracks on an album that “helped define the decade it ushered in”, advising listeners to “proceed to music that exults in breezy rhythms”, which included “the colorful revolutions of ‘What Is Life’ … bluesy and intricate on Harrison and Dylan’s ‘I’d Have You Anytime,’ fizzy on ‘Apple Scruffs,’ grooving on ‘Let It Down,’ and spookily proto-disco on ‘Art of Dying'”.

This record has a tendency to sound thin and shrill. If you wish to hear All Things Must Pass the way it should sound (and who doesn’t!) head over to HDtracks http://www.hdtracks.com/all-things-must-pass-215198 and buy the Audiophile 96kHz/24bit version of the 2014 remaster….amazing! George’s son Dhani had a large hand in the way this album was remastered and sounds and he nailed it…. his dad would be proud! *This video features the higher resolution 96/24bit HD FLAC version.

[Lyrics]
Now I’ve watched you sitting there
Seen the passers-by all stare
Like you have no place to go
But there’s so much they don’t know about Apple Scruffs

You’ve been stood around for years
Seen my smiles and touched my tears
How it’s been a long, long time
And how you’ve been on my mind, my Apple Scruffs

Apple Scruffs, Apple Scruffs
How I love you, how I love you

In the fog and in the rain
Through the pleasures and the pain
On the step outside you stand
With your flowers in your hand, my Apple Scruffs

While the years they come and go
Now, your love must surely show me
That beyond all time and space
We’re together face to face, my Apple Scruffs

Apple Scruffs, Apple Scruffs
How I love you, how I love you

“Looks like a little brother to the sun… or mother to the stars at night”

Here Comes The Moon – George Harrison (1979) FLAC Audio 4k ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Here Comes The Moon” was released in the winter of 1979 on George Harrison’s seventh solo album, George Harrison. The Beatles recorded George’s masterpiece “Here Comes The Sun” on their Abbey Road album, and 10 years later he recorded an equally beautiful track for “the little brother to the sun”.

Several years back, when I was making the video for “Your Love Is Forever”: https://youtu.be/pY9TX_Q7j-o I though it might be interesting to try a similar one for “Here Comes The Moon”…took me awhile but I finally got around to it. This video is stylistically the “night” video to that earlier video. I hope you enjoy the result.

A new George Harrison album was always an exciting and memorable event when I was growing up and each one (as with the other Beatle solo albums) brings distinctive memories of very specific times, places, people and emotions of my youth. I had been in awe of George’s previous album, 33&1/3 and was thrilled to finally hear that he had a new album. It was my last year of high school and I took a friend along with me hauling some cattle to a ranch near Corpus Christi for my dad on a Saturday. I was more than happy to make the trip because I knew it would allow me a chance to get into a city to a record shop and pick up George’s new album. Though the trip wouldn’t normally take me thorough San Antonio, I made a detour to the route and picked up both the album, cassette, AND! a great promo poster for the LP (In those days I was very skilled at convincing record store employees to give me promo material! LOL!, of course once I started working at one the next year such material became much more available and….yes, I still have that poster!). To this day every time I listen to this album (which is often, btw) I think of the hassles of driving that cattle trailer through the city and then happily listening to this album on cassette with my friend as I winded through the Texas countryside with the blue sky, white puffy clouds and sunshine above us!

This is the 23rd video I’ve made for a George Harrison song (and the 4th from the George Harrison album).

From Wiki: With Harrison’s penchant for leisure and travel following Thirty Three & 1/3’s release, he had not started recording a follow-up until mid-1978, although he had been writing songs during his hiatus. Teaming up with a co-producer for the first time in years, Harrison decided to use Russ Titelman to help realise the music for George Harrison, which was recorded at his home studio, entitled Friar Park, with string overdubs being effected at London’s AIR Studios. Special guests included Steve Winwood, Gary Wright (who co-wrote “If You Believe”) and Eric Clapton.

The album was previewed by the single “Blow Away”, which reached No. 51 in the United Kingdom and No. 16 in the United States. George Harrison received positive reviews upon its February 1979 release. It reached No. 39 in the UK and it peaked at No. 14 in the US, going gold. “Blow Away” as a single was also successful in Canada, peaking at No. 7 on the singles chart. Harrison’s increasing efforts, however, were being directed towards the film industry, having formed Handmade Films in order to help his friends in Monty Python complete Life of Brian.

Anyway…..till next one…..hope you enjoy this one!

As always, HUGE THANKS to everyone who’s art made this new art possible. THANK YOU!!!

[Lyrics]
Everybody’s talking up a storm
Act like they don’t notice it
But here it is and here it comes
Here comes the moon, the moon, the moon, the moon, the moon.
Impulse always quickens when it’s full
As it turns my head around me
Yes it does and here it comes
Here comes the moon, the moon, the moon, the moon, the moon.
God’s gift I see that’s moving up there into the night
Though dark the mirror in the sky reflects us our light:
Looks like a little brother to the sun
Or mother to the stars at night
And here it is and here it comes
Here comes the moon, the moon, the moon, the moon, the moon.
Breath is always taken when it’s new
Enhance upon the clouds around it
Yes it is and here it comes
Here comes the moon, the moon, the moon.

“Maybe I’m amazed at the way you help me sing my song”…Paul McCartney

Maybe I’m Amazed – Paul McCartney (1970) 96KHz/24bit FLAC HD Video ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Maybe I’m Amazed” was released on Paul McCartney’s debut solo album, titled simply McCartney, in the spring of 1970. I couldn’t get any of my in-the-works projects finished, so I jumped in and made this quickie. Most of the work was spent working on the old video clip of Paul and Linda and their family in Scotland in 1970, some effects and adjustment layers and I found a look I liked and that lost the jaggies for full screen.

The album featured a very loose, laid-back recording style of the nature that was always intended for The Beatles’s Let It Be album. The record is entirely Paul…he plays all instruments and the only other person featured in any way was his wife Linda, who sang back up vocals.

Audio sourced from Archive Collection Remaster FLAC!

It seems odd, to me at least, that this record doesn’t seem to fall prey to the “dated” sound that affects some of Paul’s other records….I guess that’s in large part due to the fact that it’s homespun, patchwork nature was so basic that it resists and remains. I love the record and give in totally to it’s charms each time I listen to it.

From Wiki:
McCartney shot to #1 in the US for three weeks, eventually going 2x platinum. This was despite the fact that it had neither an accompanying single released nor a tour to promote it, and that critical reaction was far from positive. In the UK, it was only denied the top spot by the best-selling album of 1970, Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water, which stayed at #1 for 33 (non-consecutive) weeks. There, McCartney debuted straight at #2, where it remained for three weeks.

The album was widely criticised for its “homespun” approach and “half-written” songs, the UK’s rock bible Melody Maker declaring that “With this record, his debt to [Beatles producer] George Martin becomes increasingly clear”; the reviewer found “sheer banality” in all the tracks save for “Maybe I’m Amazed”. Shortly after the album’s release, George Harrison described the same song and “That Would Be Something” as “great”, but the rest, he said, “just don’t do anything for me”. Harrison added that, unlike himself, John Lennon and Starr, McCartney was probably too “isolated” from other musicians: “The only person he’s got to tell him if the song’s good or bad is Linda.” Lennon stated in his 1970 interview with Rolling Stone editor Jann Wenner that, given McCartney’s penchant for demanding perfectionism in the studio from his fellow Beatles, he was surprised at the lack of quality in the album; Lennon also made several remarks comparing McCartney negatively to his own solo album debut, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band.

When the new remastered version was released in 2011 as part of the Paul McCartney Archive Collection, the album re-entered the charts in the UK, Netherlands, France and Japan.

It is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

This is my third video from the classic McCartney debut! Check out the other two if you are so inclined:
“Junk”/”Singalong Junk” https://youtu.be/X1jARPv-t-I
“Every Night” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lKbqv6QtWnM
THANKS!

 

[Lyrics]
Maybe I’m amazed at the way you love me all the time
Maybe I’m afraid of the way I love you
Maybe I’m amazed at the the way you pulled me out of time
And hung me on a line
Maybe I’m amazed at the way I really need you
Maybe I’m a man and maybe I’m a lonely man
Who’s in the middle of something
That he doesn’t really understand
Maybe I’m a man and maybe you’re the only woman
Who could ever help me
Baby won’t you help me understand
Maybe I’m a man and maybe I’m a lonely man
Who’s in the middle of something
That he doesn’t really understand
Maybe I’m a man and maybe you’re the only woman
Who could ever help me
Baby won’t you help me understand
Maybe I’m amazed at the way you’re with me all the time
Maybe I’m afraid of the way I leave you
Maybe I’m amazed at the way you help me sing my song
Right me when I’m wrong
Maybe I’m amazed at the way I really need you

To hear your wonderous stories.

Wonderous Stories – Yes (1977) 192Khz/24bit FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Wonderous Stories” was released on Yes’ eight studio album, Going for the One, on 15 July 1977. This is my second video for a track from the Going For The One album (I did the title track way way back; check it if you dare; https://youtu.be/ZR1koTw5NqI ), and one of numerous Yes videos I’ve made. I haven’t uploaded any new Yes videos in a long time because all the ones I’ve made just seem to get buried and get very few views….I’ll try again, if there’s any interest I might update the ancient “Going For The One” and finish and upload more great tracks from Going For The One and other Yes albums? If you’re a Yes fan, please drop a like and a comment, maybe give it a share….it all helps. Thanks!

Since this is an album that I will ramble on about, I’ll just paste some of my notes on the album copied from the description of my old video for “Going For The One”:

“Going For The One” is the title track from Yes’s eighth studio album which was released in the summer of 1977. This is such a special record for me and I recall so clearly and strongly the circumstances of it’s release. I was a sophomore in high school and although I was well into my journey of seeking to listen to all the rock bands of the time, Yes was one of those bands that I knew really only by their singles. There was an extreme amount of anticipation, advertising, and awareness surrounding the pending new album from Yes.

A couple of weeks after buying the LP, I was flying out to Los Angeles with my family to spend six weeks with my dad who was working in the motion picture industry….I remember begging my mom to stop at a record store near the airport so I could pick up a few 8-tracks to play on my new (then KILLER! 😉 portable player for the flight and afterwards….I purchased Going For The One, Animals, Low, I Robot, Trans-Europe Express and Little Queen (the first three I already had on LP, but I wasn’t about to spend the rest of the summer without them!). I still associate some of these records with that summer in LA, especially Going For The One.

From Wiki:
“Wonderous Stories” is the second track on the album solely written by Anderson. He wrote the song during “a beautiful day” while living in Switzerland, “one of those days you want to remember for years afterwards”. During the day, the lyrics to the track entered his mind that he later wrote down. He noted the song’s meaning as “the joys of life, as opposed to the uptightedness of some aspects of life” that was inspired by romantic stories and “a kind of dream sequence”. White contributed the idea of the drums and bass playing on odd beats.[

The album was recorded in Montreux, Switzerland after the band took a break in activity for each member to release a solo album and their 1976 North American tour. It marks the departure of keyboardist Patrick Moraz and the return of Rick Wakeman, who had left to pursue his solo career after musical differences surrounding Tales from Topographic Oceans (1973). In a departure from their previous three albums, Going for the One features shorter and more direct songs written without a unifying theme or concept, and saw Yes record with new producers, engineers and cover designers.

Going for the One received a mostly positive response from music critics who welcomed the band’s return to more accessible music like their earlier albums The Yes Album (1971) and Fragile (1971). It was a commercial success and reached number one on the UK Albums Chart, their second album to do so, for two weeks and peaked at number 8 on the US Billboard 200. “Wonderous Stories” and “Going for the One” were released as singles; the former went to number 7 in the UK which remains the band’s highest charting single. Going for the One was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for 500,000 copies sold in the US. Yes supported the album with a six-month tour of North America and Europe.

[Lyrics]
I awoke this morning
Love laid me down by a river.
Drifting I turned on upstream
Bound for my forgiver.
In the giving of my eyes to see your face.
Sound did silence me
Leaving no trace.
I beg to leave, to hear your wonderous stories.
Beg to hear your wonderous stories.

He spoke of lands not far
Or lands they were in his mind.
Of fusion captured high
Where reason captured his time.
In no time at all he took me to the gate.
In haste I quickly checked the time.
If I was late I had to leave to hear your wonderous stories.
Had to hear your wonderous stories.

Hearing
Hearing
Hearing your wonderous stories.
Hearing your wonderous stories.
It is no lie I can see deeply into the future.
Imagine everything
You’re close
And were you there to stand
So cautiously at first and then so high.
As he spoke my spirit climbed into the sky.
I bid it to return
To hear your wonderous stories.
Return to hear your wonderous stories.

Hearing,
Hearing,
Hearing,
Hearing,
Hearing,

Blowing smoke rings from the corners of my my, my, my, my mouth

Marrakesh Express – Crosby Stills & Nash (1969) 192Khz/24bit FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Marrakesh Express” was released in the spring of 1969 on Crosby, Stills & Nash’s eponymous first album. It spawned two Top 40 hit singles, “Marrakesh Express” and “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” which peaked respectively at #28 the week of August 23, 1969, and at #21 the week of December 6, 1969, on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. The album itself peaked at #6 on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart. It was certified four times platinum by the RIAA for sales of over 4,200,000.

Crosby, Stills & Nash is such a great album, and I’m working on my Wes Anderson Criterion Blu-ray collection (lack only “The Darjeeling Limited” and “Fantastic Mr. Fox”..and my favorite of his films, “Budapest Hotel” (his latest) which hasn’t yet received the treatment)….so since I didn’t have anything else ready, I made this very quickie mashup. I hope you enjoy it. PS….buy the movie on Criterion Blu-ray if you haven’t yet and are as big as I am. https://www.criterion.com/films/27520-the-darjeeling-limited?q=autocomplete The video is my first encoded in 4K UDH (though the source material is not 4K…i’m just experimenting with the format).

The album was a very strong debut for the band, instantly lifting them to stardom. Along with the Byrds’ Sweetheart of the Rodeo and The Band’s Music from Big Pink of the previous year, it helped initiate a sea change in popular music away from the ruling late sixties aesthetic of bands playing blues-based rock music on loud guitars. Crosby, Stills & Nash presented a new wrinkle in building upon rock’s roots, utilizing folk, blues, and even jazz without specifically sounding like mere duplication. Not only blending voices, the three meshed their differing strengths, David Crosby for social commentary and atmospheric mood pieces, Stephen Stills for his diverse musical skills and for folding folk and country elements subtly into complex rock structures, and Graham Nash for his radio-friendly pop melodies, to create an amalgam of broad appeal. The album features some of their best known songs: “Helplessly Hoping”, “Long Time Gone” (a response to the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy), “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” (composed for Judy Collins) and “Wooden Ships” (co-written with Paul Kantner of Jefferson Airplane).

This album proved very influential on many levels to the dominant popular music scene in America for much of the 1970s. The success of the album generated gravitas for the group within the industry, and galvanized interest in signing like acts, many of whom came under management and representation by the CSN team of Elliot Roberts and David Geffen. Strong sales, combined with the group’s emphasis on personal confession in its writing, paved the way for the success of the singer-songwriter movement of the early seventies.

In a contemporary review, Rolling Stone critic Barry Franklin called Crosby, Stills & Nash “an eminently playable record” and “especially satisfying work”, finding the songwriting and vocal harmonies particularly exceptional. Robert Christgau was less enthusiastic in The Village Voice: “I have written elsewhere that this album is perfect, but that is not necessarily a compliment. Only Crosby’s vocal on ‘Long Time Gone’ saves it from a special castrati award.” In a retrospective review, Jason Akeny of AllMusic believed some of the songs’ themes “haven’t dated well” but “the harmonies are absolutely timeless, and the best material remains rock-solid”. In 2003, Rolling Stone ranked Crosby, Stills & Nash number 259 on their list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

Jefferson Airplane guitarist Paul Kantner was finally credited as co-composer of “Wooden Ships” on the expanded edition reissue, something long acknowledged on his group’s version of the song from their Volunteers album, released the same year.

[Lyrics]
Looking at the world
Through the sunset in your eyes
Trying to make the train
Through clear Moroccan skies
Ducks and pigs and chickens call
Animal carpet wall to wall
American ladies five foot tall in blue.
Sweeping cobwebs from the edges of my mind
Had to get away to see what we could find
Hope the days that lie ahead
Bring us back to where they’ve led
Listen not to what’s been said to you
Would you know we’re riding
On the Marrakesh Express
Would you know we’re riding
On the Marrakesh Express
All on board that train
I’ve been saving all my money just to take you there
I smell the garden in your hair
Take the train from Casablanca going south
Blowing smoke rings from the corners of my my, my, my, my mouth
Colored cottons hang in air
Charming cobras in the square
Striped Djellebas we can wear at home
Don’t you know we’re riding on the Marrakesh Express
Don’t you know we’re riding on the Marrakesh Express
They’re taking me to Marrakesh Express
Don’t you know we’re riding on the Marrakesh Express
Don’t you know we’re riding on the Marrakesh Express
They’re taking me to Marrakesh
All on board that train
All on board that train

And you might know how to play with fire

Original Sin – INXS (1984) 192khz/24bit FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

Original Sin” was released in April 1984 on INXS’ fourth studio album, The Swing. INXS was another favorite back in the early eighties….I loved this tune and “Johnson’s Aeroplane” (so much that it was one of the first videos that I made)…watch it here: https://youtu.be/CXqtmaz_0Aw This is another video where I’ve taken the single edit video which was about 3 minutes and 45 seconds, and edited it to the longer studio track which was a full 5 minutes and 20 seconds….so you get the full studio track and like 30% more video…..it’s much better this way, don’t you agree? 😉 Thanks for watching!

From Wiki:
The lead single “Original Sin” was recorded in New York City with Nile Rodgers and featured Daryl Hall on backing vocals. Overall, the album featured a slightly harder-edged sound than their previous releases.

By 1983 Australian rock band INXS attempted to expand their international profile with their fourth studio album, The Swing. The Sydney-based group had formed in 1977 by three brothers Andrew on guitar and keyboards; Jon on percussion and drums; and Tim Farriss on guitar; together with Garry Gary Beers on bass guitar; Michael Hutchence on lead vocals; and Kirk Pengilly on guitar, saxophone, and vocals.

In September 1983 the band travelled to New York City to work with Nile Rodgers (Madonna (entertainer), The Power Station (band), Debbie Harry, David Bowie, Kim Carnes) as producer at his Power Station studio. It was the first time the group had recorded outside Australia and provided the album’s lead single, “Original Sin” (December 1983). Rodgers asked Daryl Hall of Hall & Oates to guest on backing vocals for the chorus, Hall later recalled “I don’t know why because they’re good singers, they didn’t need me but I did it anyway”.

All four singles were co-written by Andrew with Hutchence, while other album tracks were generally written with one or more additional band members.

From December INXS were working with Nick Launay (Midnight Oil, Models) at The Manor Studio in Oxfordshire, to complete the rest of the album. A cassette extended play of remixes, Dekadance, was also released in Australia.

AllMusic’s Stephen Thomas Erlewine noted that The Swing “retains the new wave pop sense and rock attack of their earlier albums, while adding a stronger emphasis on dance rhythms”. He liked the improved songwriting “with more than half of the album featuring memorable hooks”.[8] Australian musicologist, Ian McFarlane, opined that “[it] boasted all the confident swagger and accomplished rock hooks of a band on the cusp of international acceptance”.

Fellow Australian journalists, John O’Donnell, Toby Creswell and Craig Mathieson, found that Rodgers’ effort with “Original Sin” had delivered a track with a “confident rhythm” and helped the band so that “they now had focus; the lyrical image … fitted their circumstances”. Meanwhile, Launay, after hearing that track, “accepted the challenge” of providing a “sense of reinvention” for the group so that “post-punk affectations and new romantic plumage were fading away, revealing a rock band with funk leanings and pop instincts”.

[Lyrics]
You might know of the original sin
And you might know how to play with fire
But did you know of the murder committed
In the name of love you thought what a pity

Dream on white boy
Dream on black girl
Then wake up to a brand new day
To find your dreams are washed away

There was a time when I did not care
And there was a time when the facts did stand
There is a dream and held by me
Well I’m sure you had to see it’s up in arms

Dream on white boy
Dream on black girl
Then wake up to a brand new day
To find your dreams have washed away

You might know of the original sin
And you might know how to play with fire
But did you know of the murder committed
In the name of love you thought what a pity

Dream on white boy
Dream on black girl
Then wake up to a brand new day
Dream on black boy
Dream on white girl
Then wake up to a brand new day
Dream on black boy
Dream on white girl
Then wake up to a brand new day
To find your dreams are washed away

Dream on, to play with fire
White boy, black girl
Dream on, in the name of love
Black boy, white girl
White boy, black girl
Black boy, white girl

Dream on
The name of love, yeah
You thought what a pity

Original sin

3 Classics from The Cars

Drive – The Cars (1984) MFSL SACD FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Drive” was released in March 1984 on The Cars’ fifth studio album, Heartbeat City. I’m still on a Cars roll! 😉 This is a great great track and I’ve always wanted to play around with something for it. I really needed to spend more time adjusting the spiraling stars, etc. video clip as it’s not blended quite right to be able to see the performance clip….I did get the traffic time-lapse effect video to work much better…actually the whole thing looked nice (and different) with just that effect and I almost went with that edit, but it got just a tad repetitive. Hope you enjoy the show! Thanks for checking it out!

Heartbeat City was produced by Robert John “Mutt” Lange. Picking up a positive commercial response, the Cars had many tracks getting airplay, and singles “Drive” and “You Might Think” in particular both became Top 10 hits. The album also received supportive reviews from several critics; for example, Robert Christgau stated that “the glossy approach the Cars invented has made this the best year for pure pop in damn near twenty, and it’s only fair that they should return so confidently to form.”

Heartbeat City contains a total of five American Top 40 singles. Of these, “Drive” and “You Might Think” were also Top 10 hits, reaching the No. 3 and No. 7 positions, respectively. A number of songs from the album gained significant radio and TV exposure; most notably “You Might Think” and “Magic”, which both received heavy airplay on MTV.

The lead vocal on “Drive” was performed by bassist Benjamin Orr. The song’s video was directed by actor Timothy Hutton. It features Ric Ocasek arguing with a troubled young woman played by model Paulina Porizkova (whom Ocasek would later marry). “Hello Again” had a video directed by the legendary Andy Warhol, who also appeared onscreen.

The single “It’s Not the Night” reached No. 31 on the rock charts. The song “Stranger Eyes” was used in the theatrical trailer of the 1986 film Top Gun, but it never made it into the soundtrack. “Looking for Love” was later covered by Austrian singer Falco as “Munich Girls” on his 1985 album Falco 3.

When the Cars performed at Live Aid, they played three songs from the album (“You Might Think”, “Drive”, plus the album’s title track) alongside the fan favorite “Just What I Needed”.

Robert John “Mutt” Lange’s commitment to produce the Cars album meant that he told Def Leppard he could not work on their album, Hysteria. However, due to delays in that album’s recording, Lange was eventually able to produce it.

The cover art (including an image of a 1971 Plymouth Duster 340) is from a 1972 piece by Peter Phillips called Art-O-Matic Loop di Loop.

[Lyrics]
Who’s gonna tell you when
It’s too late
Who’s gonna tell you things
Aren’t so great

You can’t go on
Thinking nothing’s wrong
Who’s gonna drive you home tonight

Who’s gonna pick you up
When you fall
Who’s gonna hang it up
When you call
Who’s gonna pay attention
To your dreams
Who’s gonna plug their ears
When you scream

You can’t go on
Thinking nothing’s wrong
Who’s gonna drive you home tonight

Who’s gonna hold you down
When you shake
Who’s gonna come around
When you break

You can’t go on
Thinking nothing’s wrong
Who’s gonna drive you home tonight

Oh you know you can’t go on
Thinking nothing’s wrong
Who’s gonna drive you home tonight

I’m In Touch With Your World – The Cars (1978) MFSL SACD FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“I’m In Touch With Your World” was released on The Cars’ self-titled debut album in June of 1978. This album sounded insanely brilliant in the summer of 1978, it was so unusual and powerful, one of the greatest debut’s in history.

I love every song on this record and wanted to shine a bit of light on one of the less known tracks, so I decided to to try something with this old performance video for “I’m In Touch With Your World”. I cleaned up the video and used some effects to light-up it up a bit and then edited it to the studio track (which was sourced from a Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs’ Super Audio CD FLAC).

The unusual percussion and keyboards (a big part of this songs appeal) are highlighted by Greg Hawkes’ performance, which I also turned up a notch or two with the video editing. Hope you enjoy! Thanks for watching!

The album, which featured the three charting singles “Just What I Needed,” “My Best Friend’s Girl,” and “Good Times Roll,” as well as several album-oriented rock radio hits, was a major success for the band, remaining on the charts for 139 weeks. It has been recognized as one of the band’s best albums.

Critically, the album was well received. AllMusic’s Greg Prato described it in a retrospective review as “a genuine rock masterpiece”, and stated that “all nine tracks are new wave/rock classics”. Prato continued, saying “With flawless performances, songwriting, and production (courtesy of Queen alumnus Roy Thomas Baker), The Cars’ debut remains one of rock’s all-time classics.” Rolling Stone magazine critic Kit Rachlis said “The pop songs are wonderful,” continuing that “Easy and eccentric at the same time, all are potential hits.” Rachlis, however, said that “The album comes apart only when it becomes arty and falls prey to producer Roy Thomas Baker’s lacquered sound and the group’s own penchant for electronic effects.” Rolling Stone also ranked the album No. 284 in its “500 Greatest Albums of All Time” list. Robert Christgau said, “Ric Ocasek writes catchy, hardheaded-to-coldhearted songs eased by wryly rhapsodic touches, the playing is tight and tough, and it all sounds wonderful on the radio. But though on a cut-by-cut basis Roy Thomas Baker’s production adds as much as it distracts, here’s hoping the records get rawer.”

Elliot Easton said of the album, “We used to joke that the first album should be called The Cars Greatest Hits. We knew that a lot of great bands fall through the cracks. But we were getting enough feedback from people we respected to know that we were on the right track.”

The Cars featured a large amount of technology on many of its tracks, due to the band’s appreciation for new equipment. David Robinson said, “We’d always get the latest stuff from music stores even if it would be obsolete in two months. It reached the point where I’d have 10 or 12 foot switches to hit during a short set.”[1] The album also is notable for front-man Ric Ocasek’s use of irony and sarcasm. Keyboardist Greg Hawkes said, “There was definitely a little self-conscious irony in there. We started out wanting to be electric and straight-ahead rock, and it kind of turned into an artier kind of thing.”

David Robinson said in an interview that he “had designed a very different album cover [for The Cars] that cost $80.00 to design.” He continued, “I remember the price exactly. It was completely finished and everything, but it was a little more bizarre than the cover that they had in mind, so they changed some of it because of copyright problems and put it in as the inner sleeve. But I think that was way more how we envisioned who we were then.”[2]

Unlike many of The Cars’ album covers, the cover for The Cars was designed by the record company, rather than drummer David Robinson. The cover was not well liked by the members of the band, however. Robinson said, “I thought that when the Elektra came out it was way too slick. The pictures of us I didn’t like.”[2] Guitarist Elliot Easton expressed dislike for “that big grinning face,” saying, “Man, I got tired of that cover.”

The cover model is Natalya Medvedeva, a Russian-born model, singer, writer and journalist.

[Lyrics]
You can tuck it on the inside
You can throw it on the floor
You can wave it on the outside
Like you never did before
You get the diplomatic treatment
You get the force fed future
Get the funk after death
Get the Wisenheimer brainstorm

So don’t you try to hide it
(I’m in touch with your world)
And nobody’s gonna buy it
It’s such a lovely way to go
It’s such a lovely way to go

I been lying on your feathers
You keep talkin’ about the weather
I’m a psilocybin pony
You’re a flick fandango phoney
It’s a sticky contradiction
It’s a thing you call creation
Everything is science fiction
And I ought to know

So don’t you try to hide it
(I’m in touch with your world)
And nobody’s gonna buy it
It’s such a lovely way to go
It’s such a lovely way to go-uh-oh

Since I Held You – The Cars (1979) HD 192/24 FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Since I Held You” was released on The Cars’ second album, Candy-O, June of 1978. This album was very close to as great as their first one which was really an achievement for the band.

I’ve had a concept vid for “Dangerous Type” sitting around for 2 or 3 years which I think I’ll finish up soon….in the meantime I worked up a couple more live performance vids. This one features a 192kHz/24bit FLAC from the recent HD releases of their studio albums….they sound stunning, trust me.

From Wiki:
Unlike the first album, Candy-O was created under a more democratic approach. Ric Ocasek said of this, “When one of my songs goes to the band in barest cassette form, we sit around and talk about it. If I’m outvoted, we don’t do it. “We almost didn’t include ‘Double Life’ on the new album, it had been dropped. I think everybody in the Cars is open-minded and creative enough that they would do anything – nobody’s holding anything back. Everybody appreciates the more radical, experimental kinds of music and likes it. But sometimes, when you’re put together with five pieces, things are not as minimal as they could or should be. Everybody’s developed a unique personal style, and we rely on their input. If they did it, it’s good enough.”

For the album, the band once again worked with Queen producer Roy Thomas Baker. Ocasek said of their relationship with the producer, “Well, some of the things on that first album that we thought were a little slick, we toned down on the second, like on the background vocals. But if we were going to rely on the producer we had hired, there was no reason to try and change him. On the second album, it was easier to say, ‘Roy, let’s not do the multi-tracked harmonies this time.'”

The band’s label, Elektra, initially wanted to hold back the release of the album, but the band stood their ground. Ocasek said of this, “At first Elektra wanted to hold it back some, but we told them there was no way, because if they were going to hold that back, they were going to hold us back, and we can’t just sit around and be held back.” Released as the follow-up to their 1978 hit album The Cars, Candy-O peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200. The album re-entered the charts at No. 179 in 1984. The record was also ranked number 82 on Billboard’s “Top Albums of the Year” chart for 1979.

Three singles were lifted from Candy-O: “Let’s Go” hit No. 14, making it the first Top 20 Cars single, “It’s All I Can Do” peaked at No. 41, barely missing the Top 40, and “Double Life” failed to chart.

The album cover was painted by artist Alberto Vargas, who was known for his paintings of pin-up girls that appeared in Esquire and Playboy magazines in the 1940s through the 1960s. The idea to hire Vargas came from drummer David Robinson, the band’s artistic director and a collector of pin-ups. The 83-year-old Vargas had retired several years earlier but was persuaded to take the assignment by his niece, who was a fan of the Cars. The painting, depicting a woman sprawled across the hood of a car, was based on a photo shoot directed by Robinson at a Ferrari dealership. The model, coincidentally named Candy Moore (famous for having played Lucille Ball’s onscreen daughter on The Lucy Show), briefly dated Robinson afterward.

Rolling Stone critic Tom Carson said, “It’s almost inevitable that Candy-O, the Cars’ second album, doesn’t seem nearly as exciting as their first. The element of surprise is gone, and the band hasn’t been able to come up with anything new to replace it. Candy-O is an elaborately constructed, lively, entertaining LP that’s packed with good things. And it’s got a wonderful title. But it’s a little too disciplined, a shade too predictable.”

[Lyrics]
I really love the way you talk
I don’t mind sayin’ so
And oh, I love it when you dance
So silky slow
Oh, baby please don’t go

I know you refuse to get involved
You won’t help me out none
You run around like a paperdoll
Pretending it’s fun
Oh, baby please don’t run

Somethin’ in the night, just don’t sit right
Looks like I’m gonna be up all night, yeah

It’s been such a long time
Since I held you
I said, it’s been such a long time
Since I held you
Oh oh, such a long time
Since I held you

I won’t forget the way you said
It doesn’t bother you much
Tutor impressions in your head
Just before the last touch
That meant so much

Somethin’ in the night, just don’t sit right
Looks like I’m gonna be up all night, yeah

It’s been such a long time
Since I held you
I said it’s been such a long time
Since I held you
Oh oh, such a long time
Since I held you

It’s been a long time
It’s been a long time
It’s been a long time
Such a long time

Well, it’s been a long, long time
I said, it’s been a long, long time
It’s been a long time
Since I held you
Oh oh, such a long time
Since I held you

“They’ve come back home to dream those dreams again” from 1988 Kansas’ Ghosts

Ghosts – Kansas (1988) HD FLAC ~MetalGuruMessiah~

“Ghosts” was released in October 1988 on Kansas’ 11th studio album, In The Spirit Of Things. This is such a wonderful tune but it remains in relative obscurity along with most of the band’s output from the mid-80’s onward. Maybe not quite as great as “Dust in the Wind” but it’s a really beautiful tune that I’ve always loved…then again, maybe it’s even better! 😉 Though I wanted to finish my BOC Mirrors string with my update for my ancient video for “The Vigil”, I didn’t get it finished yet, so we’ll detour into a couple/few other thing in the meantime. Thanks to everyone for watching and thanks for sticking around..I hope you enjoy the vid!

This album was Kansas’s last studio effort for a major label. It didn’t receive much promotion, as MCA dropped a slew of “older” artists shortly after its release and famously switched its attention to current younger acts such as Tiffany. Kansas got caught in that decision and the album was a commercial failure. The label did produce several promotional materials for the record, including a glossy video for “Stand Beside Me”. The song was played regularly on MTV and allowed the single to hit the album rock charts, the last Kansas single to chart in any format. Other songs were released in odd formats, such as a 12″ promotional single of “I Counted on Love,” an import edited CD single of “House on Fire,” and a small-sized CD single of “Stand Beside Me.” The album would also be the last Kansas release to appear in vinyl format until the release of The Prelude Implicit in 2016.

A tour in support of this album included a broadcast by the King Biscuit Flower Hour, which many years later released the show as a CD.

[Lyrics]
There’s tombstone in a snowy field
Close by an old ghost town
The epitaph’s been weather-blown away
There’s a belltower where petitions peeled
It’s been half torn down
But it must have softened every soul that came to pray

There’s a schoolhouse full of broken glass
And wounded walls
The rusty swings like derelicts sleeping in the weeds
There’s a picture-graduation class
Staring down deserted halls
“The hope of 44” is what it reads

It’s just as if some restless wind blew their dreams away far away
It’s just as if those dreams had never been but oh-
I feel their ghosts around me now- I hear them say
They’ve come back home to dream those dreams again