Thursday, May 6, 2010

Michele - Saturn Rings - `69

OK kids , i still havent got turntable hooked up & all , but i thought i would share some kewl
lps i have found over the yrs @ various blogs , credit where credit is due ! this one produced by Curt Boettcher i believe ! great folk-psych pop ! -- enjoy

I’m going to say this album is great, but let’s be clear: folk-psych is always tricky, precisely because how much you get from it will depend on how much you can stand outdated sentiments. That said, a glut of reissues have refocused attention on long-neglected late-sixties works, and I thought this one, at least, was worth highlighting. Michele O’Malley’s only album is certainly a mixed bag; wedged between haunting gems are quirky folk tunes and reed-driven MOR jazz ballads. If you can navigate the Head Shop-isms, though, oh wow are there some great songs here. It shouldn’t be that hard; Michele’s voice is pretty dynamic, wrenching between full-timbre wailing and clipped, sweet phrasings, and her backing band includes excellent Mothers of Invention alums like Elliot Ingber and Lowell George (who, interestingly, never actually played together in that group).

Not that this sounds much like Captain Beefheart (Ingber’s band at the time) or Little Feat (George’s seventies outfit). Michele exists somewhere between Judee Sill, Vashti Bunyan and Tim Buckley, which (obstacle number one) becomes apparent only after the first song, the oddly-chosen “Would You Like To Go.” The song is a predictable hippy presentation of the world: “Would you like to go / back to the land that you and I once knew?” Prophets playing electric guitar? Check. Choruses of angelic hosts sing hallelujah with portable phonographs made in Japan? Check. I see – it’s about a psychedelic Macy’s! The reductive portrait of humanity is only made more annoying by the burying of Michele’s vocals in a swarm of lazy instrumentation and chorused singing. Fortunately, “Blind As You Are” has Michele exerting more influence; even if the lyrics are still a bit mystified with their own mysticism, her lilting vocals lead into a sped-up mid-section, and the interplay between flutes, piano, and bass is intoxicating. Towards the end, the switch is flipped on the hippiedelia: “You can die / as blind as you are / Nobody’s gonna care.”

In quick succession, “Song to a Magic Frog” defies its ludicrous title, turning out to be my favorite song on the album. Michele unfolds the line “Will you ever / will you ever know?” over a steadily building arrangement that never overshadows the power of her naked voice, spiking her own syllables with the spelunking proficiency of a Rita Lee or Joni Mitchell. “Frog” is followed by the brilliant Eastern-tinged “Fallen Angel”; clanging percussion and violin swirl as Michele bends her voice like Tim Buckley on Starsailor, three years before that particular monster would be unleashed on the world. Both songs are excellent, but even more enticing is how their two extremes are almost mutually exclusive, and the dynamic range Michele reaches between the two is pretty fascinating.

Of course, the excellence is deflated somewhat by obstacle number two, the quirky “Spinning, Spinning, Spinning.” Opening with a flute/reed duet, Michele brings the straight-folk inflection to overwrought lyrics like, “A cripple taught me how to dance / A blind man taught me how to see / A fallen angel taught me how to fly / And a prisoner taught me to be free.” True story: a rabid dog taught me how to gnaw my own face off. The song is particularly sad given that two songs later “Musty Dusty” fulfills the straight-folk quota for the album without the teeth-grinding lyrics, allowing Michele to wind a slight child imitation over sighing violins and guitars as she details her attic-exiled toys. “Know Yourself” relies a bit too much on the jazz-glut verse structure, a curious vehicle used by many adult contemporary artists wherein the band simply plays drippy chords while the singer sings pretty with pretty much no melody, but then suddenly, out of the blue, we launch into this majestic honky tonk chorus and the song is awesome for a brief moment before becoming all drippy again. The chorus is so good it seriously saves the song, but it’s a shame that the verses weren’t crafted with the same attention to detail.

“Lament of the Astro Cowboy” throws a McCartney bass line under a psychedelic workout that bounces Michele’s voice all over the spectrum; she chokes clipped shrieks and growls bluesy Slickisms without skipping a beat. “White Linen” marries Foxtrot sensibility to a “Wooden Ships” attitude, and Michele works the Scott Walker out of her system, baroquing her delivery over beautiful piano structures and undulating tempos. “Misty Mirage” is lovingly stripped down, hinging on a series of gushing background harmonies as the chorus winds out. The lyrics are a bit paltry, but the song as a composition is a pretty hot joint, ascending at its coda to a dog pile of overdubbed Micheles cycling over a triumphant drumbeat. The album closes with “Believe You,” another strong vocal performance, uniting a country lilt with a rock approach. It’s similar to the effect achieved by Pink Floyd’s work on the soundtrack for Zabriskie Point.

Saturn Rings are dust, and this is a dusty album. I’m pretty sure you could sync it up with Passenger and everything would seem kosher. Even the ending has a similar effect to that of that film: over fading guitars, a voice intones, “Come. Come listen.” And…silence. If these are the sorts of things labels like Fallout can unearth from the late sixties, then I hope the silence surrounding their existence will cease.
[ Mark Abraham ]

Michele - Saturn Rings - `69 - MP3 @ 192 

   01 - Would You Like to Go
   02 - Blind as You Are
   03 - Song to a Magic Frog
   04 - Fallen Angel.
   05 - Spinning, Spinning, Spinning
   06 - Know Yourself
   07 - Musty Dusty
   08 - Lament of the Astro Cowboy
   09 - White Linen
   10 - Misty Mirage
   11 - Believe You



Anonymous said...

Since I was mostly raised in a head shop, head shopisms should be no problem. Sounds like a gas... :o)

Tikismikis said...

Beautiful. Thankx for sharing.

Anonymous said...

you might enjoy my band's old album...

band was called "sins tailor "
album called " ticket for a destination "

artwork included in zip file..........


david a burdick

here's the link

i think it may only be up for 90 days..........if no one downloads me if it disappears and i'll re-up it...

you can do a google search for me or the band to get more information..............

we used to be sold on notlame ....and we were scheduled to play the ipo long time ago when we lost our drummer....
we are from dwight twilley...and 20/20

you can send me a donation at my email address at paypal if ya feel like helpin a fella out....
here's my email address....

we also still have plenty of these cd's if you wanna buy a hard copy..........just let me know....

i'm on myspace and facebook as well....!/profile.php?id=1125731270

or you can always go to my bulletin board

thanxs to all the fans....
david a burdick

sfdoomed said...

A lost gem. Thanks for posting.

This blog is fantastic. Your detailed write ups are fun to read.

Anonymous said...

Good job, thanks a lot!


sunny15blue said...

now that's interesting, i put a curt boettcher song on youtube last week and searching for pics this lp's cover came up and it duly went up with the paltry few of him that i found-i just guessed that he produced it-and i recognise that title'musty dusty'-so thanks this sounds right up my street !

ps-the song is 'i love her more each day'-i'll not link it in case you don't want them here.

man and van in London said...

Nice! I really enjoyed reading your post. Thanks for sharing and keep up the good work.

Rochacrimson said...

Great gem!

XFem said...

Thank you for posting this. Love your blog! I always try to collect as much psychedelic music as I go along. Can't wait to see and hear more from you!

Kamen said...

The secret of life is to dare.
The spice of life is to befriend.
Vegas EscortsRocks off Rude Boy

heobeo said...

The secret of life is to dare.
The spice of life is to befriendfree chatEscort Sydney

heobeo said...

Melbourne Escortsfree camps-the song is 'i love her more each day'-i'll not link it in case you don't want them here.

heobeo said...

the song is 'i love her more each day'-i'll not link it in case you don't want them here.Car Headlightused mobile homes

heobeo said...

London Escortsfree porn kamen

Kamen said...

For those who fight for it, life has a flavor the sheltered will never know.
glasdildoGold Coast Escorts

Hamshira said...

zappahead said...

Thanks for still keeping this going...much appreciated and enjoy your blog a lot...cheers.

文章 said...

餐飲設備 製冰機 洗碗機 咖啡機 冷凍冷藏冰箱 蒸烤箱 關島婚禮 巴里島機票 彈簧床 床墊 獨立筒床墊 乳膠床墊 床墊工廠 產後護理之家 月子中心 坐月子中心 坐月子 月子餐 銀行貸款 信用貸款 個人信貸 房屋貸款 房屋轉增貸 房貸二胎 房屋二胎 銀行二胎 土地貸款 農地貸款 情趣用品 情趣用品 腳臭 水晶 長灘島 長灘島旅遊 婚禮顧問 婚禮顧問

Tham93 said...

Animal ringtones, hot ringtones free download for your mobile. Free Animal Remix 2017 Ringtone to download . Good fun!
Click here:

djjason said...

Thanks for article !Maybe soneone intrested in good hip-hop samples -

mantapjiwa said...

Togel Online

Bandar Togel Terpercaya

Judi Togel

Agen Togel

Daftar Togel

Keluaran Togel

fromnabulax said...

Let’s see if this cuts through all this spam.
Credit where due and all, this album was absolutely and positively produced by Michael Deasy and NOT Curt.
Have a listen to Deasy on his own Tanyet, or Friar Tuck , both produced by him. This album is of a like with those far more than any of Curt’s productions.
Deasy and Curt were certainly cohorts, Deasy appears on nearly every Curt production from Roe’s Sweet Pea, The Ballroom, Sagittarius, The Association, and so many others, on through to this LP.
Deasy already having staked out his own career beginning with his gig as sax player in Eddie Cochran’s band, carved out his own unique sound as a guitarists if you know what to listen for.
By 1969 he already had 11 solid years of studio time under his belt with more than enough experience to take on this LP. Maybe his production work didn’t sell, but he was active in that regard.
He was also working at this time with a very young pre Jim Messina collaboration with Kenny Loggins in a long forgotten band project called Gator Creek. Kenny’s gigantic hit ‘Danny’s Song’ first appears on that LP in an early version.
See? A huge hit years after Mike attempts to hit with same guy, the same song a few earlier. Mike’s stuff always sounds great, but he just never did sell as a producer.
On this album he is uncredited yet plays on several tunes. Electric, acoustic slide, or whatever was called for.
Boettcher certainly has his touch on several LPs he is uncredited on including this one, but as I wrote earlier Saturn Rings is a Mike Deasy production through and through.
Mike had great hopes for this album and worked really hard on it, all the while continuing to do outside session work playing on literally hundreds of gold selling records, as well as probably that many stinkeroos.
Saturn Rings s a really cool LP, and I am glad to have loved it all these years. Kinda fun to see it discovered too.
As one last aside, Mike is the very last voice you hear on the LP inviting Michele to “Come Listen”.
Thanks for a fun essay. I found myself popping the LP on as I was reading and responding to it, As chewed up as that old record is, being over 50 years old and a survivor of the psychedelic revolution, it still sounds so much nicer than the vinyl rip currently available on CD.
Be seeing you...