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Urban75 Album of the Year - 1968

krtek a houby

Share knowledge, don't weaponize it
Been listening to George Harrison's Wonderwall Music which is now seen as one of the first world fusion records. It's not one you'd find yourself humming along to but it's a damn fine listen, imho.
 

Lurdan

old wave
Is it new versions of previously recorded stuff? Which would be fine. But it looks a lot like ‘67 to me
There's an article in Billboard on the 18th November 1967 about a slate of contemporary music releases on Columbia labels ("Col. Goes Mod With Release of 17 Titles of Contemporary Fare") which lists it but no release date. Billboard list it in their new album release column on 13th January 1968. Looks like another of those annoying end of year/start of year releases and in a genre where the notion of 'release date' isn't exactly a massive priority.

ETA: trying some different search strings I found a couple of articles confirming this group of contemporary music titles were released in November 1967.
 
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Lurdan

old wave
Another groovy soundtrack. Rather played this to death in the 90s, however it's still as entertainingly silly as the film and unlike a lot of soundtrack LPs it works as an album IMO.

 

killer b

Minimum Waste / Maximum Joy
This Pearls Before Swine album is good, came across it a month or so ago when the singer died (Psychic TV covered Translucent Carriages on A Pagan Day too)

 

rutabowa

LOSE IT
Reverend Gary Davis "live at Newport". his live albums are the way to go for me, much as I love his early 40s crazy fast technical blues style, I really LOVE his rougher more emotional live output from the 60s/70s.
 

ska invita

back on the other side
Much as Id like to Im struggling to get behind any of the hippy LPs from this peak-hippy year. Curious to see what the hippiest lp to make it into the final list is.



Best two Ive never heard before finds so far are this really accessible tight and lyrical south african jazz lp - really lovely vibes and great playing. So sweet impossible not to like...
Mankunku Quartet - Yakhal' Inkomo

title track tribute to John Coltrane (who died the previous year)
as it says in the liner notes, brilliant piano solo on that
Recorded on 23 July, 1968 in the Johannesburg Studios of Manley Van Niekerk

"Ah... at last it's done. I mean the recording of South Africa's number one tenor sax player, Winston "Mankunku" Ngozi. This is the LP that every jazz fan has been waiting for. Listen to it from side one to the last note on side two then you'll agree with me that this is jazz, dished out by the son of the soil in a soul/jazz bowl.

About the man himself. He was born on 21st June 1943 in Retreat, Cape Province. He started playing the piano at the age of ten and two years later bought a tenor saxophone. "Mankunku," as he is called, started to take music seriously in the early sixties. His first professional engagement was with Alf Herbert's African Jazz and Variety and thereafter with South Africa's greatest bassist Midge Pike of Cape Town, about whom he said "Midge was really the man behind my success. He really helped me a lot, I take my hat off to him, dad — I will always remember him." I asked him who influenced his playing. "Daddy Trane and Brother Shorter," he said. "Is that why you composed a tune called "Dedication?" "Yes dad, I feel like crying every time I listen to the music of these two men." I first heard Mankunku play in 1967, during the La Vern Baker/George "Stardust" Green tour. I am sure that many a jazz fan will agree with me that he was the star of the show.

On the first side of this LP is "Yakhal Inkomo" (one of his original works), literally translated "Bellowing Bull." The sound of a bull bellowing mournfully at the loss of one of his kind, is one from deep down in the heart. It is with this sound captured musically, that Mankunku expresses his deep grief at the loss of one of the greatest tenor players in the world, Daddy Trane, as he calls the late John Coltrane. If you listen to the early recordings of John Coltrane — for example "Blue Train," "Moments Notice" and Wayne Snorter's "Johnny's Blues" and "Noise in the Attic," you will agree with him that he was influenced by them. The second tune is also his own composition — "Dedication" (to Daddy Trane and Brother Shorter). It is a 4/4, which is so well arranged that I could hardly believe that it is his original work — with this tune he really plays his part. He plays himself. I remember during the recording session he didn't want anyone to move about because such movements disturb his feelings and concentration. The other tunes are his choice. From Horrace Silver's works he chose "Doodlin"' and from Coltrane's "Bessie's Blues."

About the trio that provided the background, he said "they are fabulous dad, they are with me all the time. When I reach the climax, they are there with me — I love working with them." That, I myself believe, because while recording "Yakhal' Inkomo" I saw tears rolling down his cheeks after Lionel Pillay's piano solo. Everyone there was thrilled to hear Lionel play with such feeling, a real down-to-earth feeling. The Early Mabuza Trio played and played — they deserve full marks." — RAY NKWE President of the Jazz Appreciation Society of South Africa
And this kinda psych-brazilian LP (great artwork too)
"My favourite album of all time" Quantic

The official Mr Bongo reissue. Krishnanda is an album in the truest sense of the word – a spiritual, psychedelic Brazilian masterpiece from start to finish – celebrated by everyone from Seu Jorge and Kassin to Floating Points, Madlib, Quantic, Gilles Peterson and DJ Nuts. These days, originals change hands for thousands of dollars.


Pedro dos Santos, born in Rio in 1919, was a percussionist virtuoso, composer and inventor of instruments that apparently included oddities such as the ‘Tamba’ (electrified bamboo drum) and the mouth berimbau whistle. Nicknamed Perdo ‘Sorongo’ after the rhythm he invented, that features throughout ‘Krishnanda’. A highly spiritual man who was regarded as a philosopher by many.

He worked with greats including Baden Powell, Elis Regina, Maria Bethany, Elza Soares, Sebastião Tapajós, Roberto Ribeiro, Milton Nascimento, Clara Nunes, Paul Simon and Arthur Verocai, playing on his legendary self-titled LP. In the same vein as Verocai and his self-titled LP, ‘Krishnanda’ was Pedro’s chance to shine with his own, and only, solo recording.

Krishnanda was produced by Hélcio Milito, the drummer of Tamba Trio, and arranged by conductor Joppa Lins, and originally released in 1968 on CBS (Brasil). Musically, the album touches folk, samba, afro-brazilian and psychedelia plus added effects, with a lyrical depth and diversity to match; themes including morality, perception, existence and ego.

Despite the genius of the record and the influence that it had on musicians at the time of release, it disappeared into obscurity. We first discovered the record around 2003, through a friend Julio Dui. Around that time Brazilian funk and bossa was the flavour of the day, so didn’t catch our ear immediately, however it continued improve with age and now we consider it to be one of the best albums ever made, regardless of genre or origin.

The Mr Bongo reissue is produced as a replica original LP / audio master by Ricardo Garcier at Magic Master (Rio de Janeiro) / artwork restored by Andrew Edwards, from the original copy borrowed from Julio Dui – thank you, sir!
Reading about, both have been super rare but had reissues in the last couple of years.
 
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newbie

undisambiguated
Much as Id like to Im struggling to get behind any of the hippy LPs from this peak-hippy year. Curious to see what the hippiest lp to make it into the final list is.
If it's any help there's a hell of a lot on the wiki list that I listened to at the time and thought wonderful but now, listening with 2018 ears, nah, not so much. Maybe the drugs were just better then.
 

ska invita

back on the other side
If it's any help there's a hell of a lot on the wiki list that I listened to at the time and thought wonderful but now, listening with 2018 ears, nah, not so much. Maybe the drugs were just better then.
yeah i think my window for a lot of that has closed. maybe i need my third eye chakra cleasing :)
Im finding the whole indian scales and sitars thing particularly grating. Alice Coltrane notwithstanding.

at work i can only listen with a single ear bud which is really working against all that 68 hard panning! ;) IIRC even Aretha Now had some tracks with the drums in the right only. Might have been Etta James as it goes. Discovered a couple of good albums with only clean vocals in the left channel though which makes them very tidy to cut up and stick in a sampler.
 
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ska invita

back on the other side
Been checking out this (its on Spotify):
White Light/White Heat (3CD - 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition) (with Flexi Exclusive) | The Velvet Underground | Music, News, Reissues
some fairly interesting bits including unreleased stuff on there, but I think its the live set on CD3 that is the best part of it.

Includes an instrumental of the Gift. Only so many times you can hear that story. Id guess its just the right channel from the original turned into a mono though, and not sure its stands up on its own tbh.

Overall these packages can err on spoiling the classic album I find.
 

Lurdan

old wave
"Hippiest" ?.

Lurdan gloomily contemplates the erasure of the distinctions between musical types which seemed so clear cut when he was 15.

I'd have thought Electric Ladyland might be a contender for the final list.

Dave King's original UK LP covers for Track Records aren't seen on reissues. Always liked this collage which was used on one of the discs for it's release as single albums. (Double albums were still something of a novelty for pop releases).





Loved the Mekon on the back.
 

ska invita

back on the other side
"Hippiest" ?.

Lurdan gloomily contemplates the erasure of the distinctions between musical types which seemed so clear cut when he was 15.
Id be curious to hear you lay them out Lurdan. Its true I dont have the vocabulary for it.
i guess i meant overindulgent in some psychedelic shape or form
 
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