Sunday, June 30, 2013

W.O.C.K On Vinyl - The Vampires of Dartmoore: Dracula’s Music Cabinet (1969)


Before things get too serious here at Rock On Vinyl, I thought it might be fun to post a song / album at the end of each month, that could be categorized as being either Weird, Obscure, Crazy or just plain Korny.
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Rare as hen's teeth pseudo-soundtrack originally released on German label Metronome back in 1969. With the likes of  benchmark horror releases such as Polanski's 'Rosemary's Baby' and 'Witchfinder General' released a year before, this superb, creepy, super-sleazy gem fit the zeigeist of that time perfectly! Loaded with horror-heavy, proto hip-hop beats that even the likes of DJ Spinna exploited!  German jazz/library musicians Horst Ackermann & Heribert Thusek’s incredible, dark foray into the world of eerie samples & spine-chilling funk. Electronic effects,screams,moans for your kraut /psych Halloween party!

Dracula’s Music Cabinet was part of a wave of horror-themed novelty albums released in Germany during the late 60s and early 70s, all of which were seemingly inspired by the very type of horror films that Europe was producing at the time, as best exemplified by the work of our own beloved Jess Franco. The liner notes  of the album refer to it as a soundtrack to a nonexistent film, which is pretty much right on the money. Like the soundtracks to many Euro-horror films from the 60s, much of the music on Music Cabinet consists of vaguely psychedelic lounge jazz that in itself doesn’t suggest any traditional kind of horror ambiance at all.

Elsewhere, Cabinet‘s tunes veer toward the sort of jaunty, brass-heavy adventure themes that connoisseurs might associate with the work of Peter Thomas, and, with a track titled “The Fire-Dragon of Hong Kong”, even detour into orientalism. In other words, in a musical sense, the record is thematically all over the map, but all the same might serve as fitting accompaniment to the casual nudity and furtive, drug benumbed stabs at narrative coherence typical of those films that putatively inspired it.

However, where Cabinet‘s makers – session player and library music composer Heribert Thusek, working for hire with radio comedian Horst Ackerman under the name The Vampires of Dartmoore – really put an effort into driving their concept home is in their employment of sound effects and voice, um, artistry. This consists not only of library effects, but also seemingly everything the pair could find in the tool shed or pantry, all layered over the musical tracks alongside an assortment of eccentric vocalizations. This practice leads to creations like the album’s opening cut, “The Torture Chamber of Dr. Sex”, which, if I had to assign a narrative to it, I’d describe as the sound of a man having his legs sawed off in a strip club, and perhaps liking it.

Of course, the two eventually end up going a bit off topic in their use of sound effects, as well. I really couldn’t tell you what, for instance, is meant to be so scary about the sound of cellophane rustling, or the frequent appearance of something that sounds like an electric pencil sharpener – or, for that matter, why a song titled “Dance of the Vampires” would prominently feature a recurring “BOI-OI-OINNG!” sound. Fortunately, there are enough screams and sounds of people falling down stairs or being shot sprinkled throughout to reign us back into Haunted House territory, and by the time we get to the closing cut of the album proper, “Frankenstein Greets Alpha 7”, we’re also treated to the sound of an out-of-control Theremin accompanied by a heavily accented voice shouting “Frankenstein!” at us.

Dracula’s Music Cabinet makes for some pretty hilarious listening, though its reliance on audio gimmickry might somewhat limit its time on your iPod. Many of the underlying musical compositions are plenty enjoyable on their own, and, while it’s all the random moaning and shouting and pencil sharpening that gives the record its uniqueness, it takes a very specific sort to want to subject themselves to repeated listens. [review from savagesaints.blogspot].

OK, so you might think this month's WOCK of Vinyl post really 'sucks', but I reckon The Vampires Of Dartmoore are definately Weird & Korny making them 'bloody' good candidates for this month's WOCK posting, so bite me !
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Tracklist
01 - The Torture Chamber of Dr Sex
02 - Crime and Horror
03 - The Fire Dragon of Hong Kong
04 - Murder in the Ohio Express

05 - Dance of the Vampires
06 - Hello Mr Hitchcock
07 - The Executioners of Dartmoor
08 - Killer's End
09 - The Soaked Body
10 - A Handfull of Nitro
11 - Dr Caligari's Creeps Cabinet
12 - Frankenstein Greets Alpha 7

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The Vampires Of Dartmoore Link (37Mb) New Link 23/09/2013
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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Supertramp - Live (Not Authorised) Bootleg

(U.K 1969–1988, 1996–2002, 2010–present)
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United Kingdom flash-rock aggregation, founder members Davies and Hodgson teaming up after former's band The Joint failed to make impact (another of Davie's groups, Rick's Blues, had included Gilbert O'Sullivan).
Original Supertramp line-up, apart from Davies and Hodgson, featured Richard Palmer (guitar), Dave Winthrop (saxophones) and Bob Miller (drums). They came together in late '60s under sponsorship of benevolent millionaire. First eponymous album released 1970, after which Miller suffered nervous breakdown and was replaced by Kevin Curne, selected from auditions involving some 200 drummers.
Frank Farrell came in on bass for second album, Indelibly Stamped (1971), allowing group's original bassist Hodgson to switch to lead guitar. However, interest in album was negligible and the band faded following a particularly disastrous Norwegian tour.
Currie, Palmer and Winthrop split, to be replaced by Benberg, formerly of Bees Make Honey, and Helliwell and Thompson from Alan Bown Set.
Eventual breakthrough came with Crime Of The Century in 1974, a semi-concept affair which was immaculately produced by Ken Scon. It also yielded 1975 hit "Dreamer". 1976 album Crisis? What Crisis?, another Scott production, followed closely format set by predecessor and attained similar degree of chart success.
Even In The Quietest Moments (1977) saw the band gradually refine their style for the more commercial 'Breakfast In America' in 1979.
[extract from The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Rock, edited by Michael Heatley, Carlton Books, 1994]

Producing three hit singles, the album has sold in excess of 18 million copies to date. A live album followed, before more up tempo and R&B influenced 'Last Famous Words' (1983) which reached the Top 5 in the US and UK. Subsequent releases have been sporadic and inconsistent.
Here is a show that was part of the Super Golden Radio Shows series and this one is number 8. I believe the concert took place in London on March 9th 1975 at the Hammersmith Odeon and was just before the release of Supertramp's second album "Crisis What Crisis" .
For some inexplicable reason, some pieces are amputees: this is the case, for example, "Bloody Well Right", the solo piano introduction is shortened by almost a minute. To compare with the official version of this concert, released in 2003 under the title "Is Everybody Listening?" (Ignore the indication of the cover of the latter, which incorrectly states "Ohio in 1976" as a source of recording, while musicians Supertramp themselves have confirmed that this was the concert at Hammersmith from 9th March, 1975) [extract from ace.bootlegs.free.fr]

About the concert (interview with John Helliwell)
Supertramp took to the stage of London’s Hammersmith Odeon the next month on March 9th. The gig was a last minute add-on to the end of the tour and has become famous or rather perhaps infamous as an illegal bootleg beloved amongst Supertramp fans. It was also briefly commercially released in 2001 as “Is Everybody Listening”. For some bizarre reason the original bootleg erroneously gave the venue for this show as Cleveland, Ohio rather than London, England, a mistake which the 2001 commercial release unfortunately replicated on its own cover notes.
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Be that as it may, the recording presents a highly dynamic live band, tearing through many of the current Crime of the Century AND future Crisis? What Crisis? numbers.
Moreover, it’s heartwarming evidence of a zany, and firmly tongue in cheek Helliwell MC, whose pithy wit has delighted Supertramp audiences the world over. He can be heard welcoming the Hammersmith audience thus:
“Thanks man.... Good evening. Welcome to my show and I'd like to do another one now. This is from my album. I shall be supported by Rick and Roger on vocals on this one. This is called .... Ooh another thing. We've got a little guest vocal group tonight. These are "The Trampettes" and they'll be appearing at the end of this number. They're pretty cool so don't applaud too much. This is "Hide in Your Shell"...
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Later on, when a lone heckler in the crowd continued to push his luck too far, our man confidently halted proceedings to have a word with him thus:
Ooh we've got the chap from "rent-a-mouth” here tonight [crowd and Dougie laugh and cheer] Yeah... anyway to continue... Hey listen. To get on 'ere you need some material and the only material you've got is that shitty suit you're wearing [huge crowd applause].
John ‘fessed up to this put down of put downs being borrowed from the old bass player in The Alan Bown. Whatever, it swiftly did the job and elicited a huge cheer from the giggling crowd. The heckler was heard no more.
The same recording has further evidence of his great wit and also perhaps personal disregard for safety. During this tour, he’d had a specially wired up jacket made, encrusted with fairy lights to give that special “glow in the dark” effect. He can be heard instructing Irish roadie Norman Hall to “Turn me on man” at which point Norman dutifully plugged him into the mains electricity! Twinkling in the darkness, he accompanied himself on the piano and generally hammed it up whilst singing “The Alphabet Song” (A You’re Adorable) but on other nights would occasionally swap this for “Little Sir Echo” a song he’d had taught to him by his uncle in his childhood days. [taken from johnhelliwell.com]
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This post consists of an MP3 rip (320kps) taken from CD and includes full album artwork. I like this bootleg, I like it a lot. The sound quality is A+ and I am amazed at how similar their stage performance sounds to that captured on their studio recordings. There is a 50-50 split of tracks from their 'Crime Of The Century' and 'Crisis? What Crisis?' albums, with a taster from their later album 'Quietest Moments' entitled "From Now On".
As mentioned above, the track listing on this Australian AMCOS Bootleg matches that listed by Ace Bootlegs entitled '1976 Crisis Tour' and indicates it was recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon on March 9th, 1975. Of course, this doesn't make sense as their Crisis What Crisis tour didn't officially start until November of 1975 (see Bob Siebenberg's Website). It should also be noted that this is not the full concert listing, and there are other bootlegs available with the full show (see Ace Bootlegs).
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Track Listing
01. Bloody Well Right (5:15)
02. School (5:39)
03. Sister Moonshine (5:29)
04. Hide In Your Shell (6:35)
05. A Soapbox Opera (4:34)
06. From Now On (6:56)
07. Just A Normal Day (4:03)
08. Ain’t Nobody But Me (4:53)
09. Rudy (7:26)
10. Dreamer (3:14)
11. Crime Of The Century (5:29)
12. If Everyone Was Listening (4:01)

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Supertramp are:
Rick Davies (Piano, Fender Rhodes Piano, Keyboards, Harmonica, Lead vocals)
Roger Hodgson (Keyboards, Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Lead Vocals)
John Anthony Helliwell (Keyboards, Saxophone, Clarinet, Backing Vocals)
Dougie Thomson (Bass guitar)
Bob C. Benberg (Drums, Percussion)

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Supertramp Live Link (146Mb)  Link fixed 24/10/2015
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Saturday, June 22, 2013

Various Australian Artists - The GTK Tapes Vol 1 & 2 (1994)

(Various Australian Artists 1969-75)
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"GTK is a pleasant little island in an ocean of A B.C" declared former This Day Tonight production assistant Ric Birch when he became, in August 1969 the youngest producer of a national television program in Australia. It was more than pleasant - it was truly revolutionary. In a country where 'pop music1 was dismissed by the mass media as a sort of teen disease useful only for scandal headlines, this perfectly positioned ten minute stab - at 6 30pm, just before Bellbird, four nights a week -abruptly introduced middle Australia to an emerging rock counter-culture, without a screaming girl in sight.
GTK did not dispense the hits of the day, nor. with any great frequency, the hit acts. Certainly the nightly viewers -always devoted and dismayed in equal parts - were served up the readily familiar likes of Zoot, Axiom, Doug Parkinson In Focus, Autumn, Jeff St John, Sherbet, Country Radio, the La De Das, Blackfeather, Billy Thorpe, Chain, Hush, Max Merritt & The Meteors, Russell Morris, Daddy Cool, Spectrum, and Flake, but they were also exposed to new, challenging contemporary acts such as Company Caine, Captain Matchbox, Pirana, Tamam Shud, Bakery, Sun, Third Union Band, Syrius, Glenn Cardier, Kahvas Jute. Band of Talabene No Sweat, Gungan Dim; Mother Earth, Human Instinct, Langford Lever, Duck, Jeannie Lewis, Friends, Wendy Saddington (RIP 21-06-2013), Wild Cherries, Band of Light, Gary Young's Hot Dog, Moonstone, Mighty Kong, Home, Buffalo, King Harvest, Headband and Carson
And the music was just part of it. In between the exploratory sounds were interviews, reports and, sometimes, just meandering snatches which brought long haired freaky people into the nations lounge rooms - dancers, poets, film makers, photographers, fashion designers, painters, actors and suffers.
It has to be said that there was a deathly seriousness about much of it. A rock-is-art stance which set itself in opposition to the bubblegum, teen idol face of the 'pop scene1 The counter-culture was too young and too self-conscious to trust itself with levity, so a certain ponderous tone was inevitable
If you make allowance for that, the GTK years - to late 1970 under Birch and from January 1971 to November 1975 under producer Bernie Cannon, with odd episodes produced by Bruce Wilson, Albie Thorns and Bernard Eddy -constitute the most precious and astonishing repository of rare (often pncelessly so) Australian rock recordings by the most important OZ Rock acts of an era when a once totally derivative music scene took a bold leap into the unknown.
"I lived the whole thing" recalls Cannon "It wasn't a job it was a way of life and I think that the people who watched it every night understood that it had the strongest impact upon country kids because it was really their only contact with what was going on. Under Cannon, GTK continued to offer the unexpected and the imaginative and the store of rare performances grew. There wasn't a rule that you couldn't come on and plug your new hit but my policy I suppose like Ric's, was if you couldn't cut it live you couldn't appear. We tended to get more serious bands and they often played things from their sets that they didn't have to hassle with at eight o'clock on Monday morning when most musicians can't talk let alone play. I think that most of the bands we used really appreciated the freedom to let loose a bit and do things they certainly couldn't do on happening '71. I suppose they were also aware that television at that time didn't have the technical capacity to reproduce them to record standard and maybe some of them didn't want to risk playing their swish new single live for us!"
Tony Romeril, leader of often-used GTK band Autumn concurs "Bernie always wanted to be one step ahead to be original and give the bands and the song some space. But, no it wasn't always easy when you were in your van going off to the Gore Hill studios at 7AM after finishing your last set at Whisky Au Go Go at 3 AM'"
The first two volumes of The GTK Tapes contain a wonderfully diverse array of repertoire - experimental blows, convenient covers, works in embryo, fave raves and songs that would have been recorded if the band had managed to stay together. The common factor is that none of the tracks (save Doug Parkinson In Focus' Do Not Go Gentle, which turned up on the Stone film soundtrack performed quite differently by Doug) are songs officially recorded by those acts. They all would have been welcome recordings at the time had they eventuated but almost a quarter of a century down the line they are still valid and fascinating representations of Oz Rock in between the screams and international recognition
[Linear notes by Glen. A Baker]
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Review From Rolling Stone magazine - December, 1994
by Bruce Elder 
ONE OF THE MOST CHALLENGING questions about rock releases is: "Does history have any inherent interest or merit, or should all music be evaluated on the quality of songs and musical performances
There is, for example, no doubt that these two releases are important historical documents, GTK (which stood for "Getting to Know") pre-dated Countdown and was a brief, nationwide, 10-minute spot at 630pm, four nights a week. It was positioned just before the ABC soapie Bellbird and lasted from 1969 to 1975. Because it tended to feature alternative acts, and because it often recorded performances, the GTK Tapes have become a fascinating social document of the outer reaches of pop and rock in those years.
The question in 1994 is — does anybody really care? Glenn A. Baker can write sleeve notes declaring that the GTK Tapes "constitute the most precious and astonishing repository of rate (often pricelessly so) Australian rock recordings ever uncovered , but this begs the questions: Priceless to whom? and precious to whom? Mr Baker may feel that the Zoot performing Lennon and McCartney's I'm Only Sleeping is beyond his financial resources, but it is hard to imagine many others in Australia who would bid such an item into some imaginary financial stratosphere
It is true that, if you are interested in rock musk in Australia between 1969 and 1975, these two CDs are valuable documents. That, however, presupposes that in 1994, you think lots of basic blues and R&B, cover versions of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones (there are six on the two CDs) and believe extended guitar and drum solos are relevant and interesting.
This was not a great period for music It was too self-consciously arty, the clothes were immeasurably silly (bell bottoms et al), the uniform was long hair and beards, and, disturbingly, few of the musicians from the era have any kind of career left in 1994.

It is hard to find genuinely exciting and extraordinary performances on these two CDs. Most of the covers sound like very mediocre versions of the originals. The La De Das version of Chuck Berry's "Around and Around" is pedestrian and a shadow of the Rolling Stones' incomparable version, which they are clearly trying to imitate. Blackfeather's version of "Gimme Shelter" is more impressive. Autumn's version of Neil Young's "The Loner" is surprisingly good.
Some of the originals are obviously derivative of overseas styles. The Tamam Shud track, "America", sounds so much like early Jethro Tull it is almost uncanny. It's just missing the flute. Similarly, the end of Wind Cherries' "God (Guitar Overdose)" sounds like something Pink Floyd rejected around the Saucerful of Secrets period.
Of the others, who but a philistine locked in a terminal timewarp would really want to hear Doug Parkinson crucifying Dylan Thomas' beautiful "Do Not Go Gentle", with a raucous rock/R&B version of the poem, which culminates in a truly awful drum solo. And does anyone really need six versions of the GTK theme?
For many people, rock musk is the soundtrack to their adolescence. This music was the soundtrack for an awful lot of rather hip, plugged-in baby-boomers. To those outside the demographic, these recordings will only have them scratching their heads in disbelief and saying, "That's what those old hippies meant when they said you had to be there.

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When I came across this review in Rolling Stone, I was outraged. Mr. Elder may write for Rolling Stone, but his review clearly shows an immature lack of appreciation of earlier periods of music and fashion. I would guess that he was probably a young journalist who couldn't see past his nose let alone two decades.
I would suggest that you have a listen to these historical recordings and I like Glenn A Baker think that they are priceless gems which truly document the roots of our wonderful Aussie Rock.
The post itself was sourced from the Midoztouch website (with thanks to the original uploader) and are MP3 rips (320kps) taken from CD.  Full album artwork and booklets are included.along with scans of the offending magazine article. If you enjoy these recordings and want more, then you can grab the next two volumes (Vol.3&Vol.4) on my blog also.

Vol 1. Track Listing
01 - GTK Theme (Sherbet)
02 - I'm Only Sleeping (The Zoot)
03 - Do Not Go Gentle (Doug Parkinson In Focus)
04 - Sweet Little Angel (Carson)
05 - 1967 (Company Caine)
06 - GTK Theme / America (Tamam Shud)
07 - GOD / Guitar Overdose (Wild Cherries)
08 - GTK Theme / Country Lady (Freshwater)
09 - Gimme Shelter (Blackfeather)
10 - Around And Around (La De Das)

11 - My Boogie (Healing Force)
12 - Over The Ocean (Ticket)
13 - Gassin'/ GTK Theme (Pirana)



GTK Tapes Vol 1 Link (143Mb)

Vol 2. Track Listing
01 - GTK Theme (Sherbet)
02 - The Loner (Autumn)
03 - Midnight Train (Flake)
04 - Celest Atlantis (Flying Circus)
05 - Same Old Country Song (Axiom)
06 - Honky Tonk Women (The Cleves)
07 - GTK-Theme-Strawberry Fields (Syrius)
08 - Tomorrow Never Knows (Blackfeather)
09 - Bye Bye Blackbird (MsAskills Marauders)
10 - Flip Flop and Fly (Company Caine)
11 - Caroline-GTK Theme (Doug parkinson and Focus)


GTK Tapes Vol 2 Link (150Mb)

Friday, June 21, 2013

Budgie - Let The Bird Out Of It’s Cage (2004) Bootleg

(U.K 1971 - Present)
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Although Budgie have got back on track and played some concerts in the last decade, it is still very difficult to find bootlegs of these concerts, usually because they are played in small venues packed with just a few people. On this one, Budgie played for an audience of about 300 people at the Roxy Theatre in Northampton PA USA. The sound is perfectly audible and has an almost perfect quality, except for some distortions in the heaviest parts. As for the songs played, there is a selection that goes from their debut album until 'Nightflight', and at that time they hadn't prepared anything new.
Although the date listed on the Artwork Cover says 23rd March, 2004, one of  Budgie's Fan Club Websites lists the gig as being 23rd April, 2004.
I'm inclined to believe the the Fan Club website, as they also list the previous gig being played at Sunken Gardens, San Antonio, TX, USA on the 20th April 2004. So I think this was a typo on the part of the original uploader.
With respect to the line-up, this is a rarity being the only bootleg that I'm aware of which features Simon Lees on guitar. So the line-up is, on the bass and vocals, as always, the original member of Budgie - Burke Shelley alongside Steve Williams - the drummer who was onboard since 'Bandolier', released in 1975 - and of course Simon Lees on guitar.
This bootleg is nothing short of brillant. The track listing for this gig covers all the standard tracks like "Breadfan", "Turn To Stone" and "Panzer Division Destroyed" but there is one special gem included that doesn't normally turn up on  live bootlegs - "Black Velvet Stallion". Lees sound affects at the start of this mystical power ballad are awesome, and only serves to reaffirm why he was chosen to fill the shoes of John Thomas, after Andy Hart's short stay.
Lees joined Budgie in February 2003 and recorded seven songs with the band which would later appear as bonus tracks on four of Budgie's remastered albums.  During 2005 and 2006, he co-wrote and recorded the Budgie album 'You're All Living in Cuckooland' (2006), with bassist and singer Burke Shelley at his studio in Cardiff. Lees played classical guitar on "Black Velvet" for the remastered Budgie album, 'If I Were Brittania I'd Waive the Rules'. He eventually left Budgie in July 2007, and was replaced by current axeman Craig Goldy.
There are a few drop outs here and there in the show, but overall the quality of the recording is Soundbaord standard.
The rip is in MP3 format (320kps) and full artwork is included. This gig was recorded at the Roxy Theatre in Northampton PA USA in 2004 and was one of their last gigs in the US before heading off to Poland.  For a full tour listing by Budgie with Simon Lees as their axeman, see Budgie's Fan Club Website
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Track Listing
CD1
01 - Intro (4'33)
02 - Panzer Division Destroyed (7'35)

04 - Gunslinger (6'26)
05 - Crime Against The World (5'57)
06 - I Turned To Stone (6'38)
07 - Black Velvet Stallion (9'10)
08 - In For The Kill / Rape of the Locks / Guts / (12'14)
09 - Nude Disintegrating Parachutist Woman (3'32)
10 - Zoom Club (7'37)

CD2
01 - Napoleon Bona Part One - Part Two (10'13)
02 - Parents (2'56)
03 - Breadfan / Guitar Solo / Whiskey River / (12'19)

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Budgie were
Burke Shelley (Vocals, Bass)
Simon Lees (Guitar)
Steve Williams (Drums)
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Budgie Live Link (213Mb) New Link 24/10/2015
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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Various Artists - A Hair Of The Dog (1974)

(Various Australian Artists)
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A 12 track sampler from EMI's top Australian pop albums, this is a very rare Australian Various Artists compilation album. Some of the artists featured on this album went onto bigger and better things (eg. Johnny Farnham, Ariel and Ross Ryan) while others simply disappeared off the grid (eg. Pirana, The Ormsby Brothers).  The following are brief bio's on the featured group, while the back cover of the album provides details about the albums from which these tracks were lifted.
The tracks themselves are not the singles that were officially released from the albums, which makes this sampler even more desirable from a collectors point of view.
Overall, there is a wide range of musical styles represented on this sampler, from cabaret, to popular to progressive rock. Not the greatest album cover which probably didn't help EMI in their venture to promote the artists showcased, but the title is quite cliche' and clever (hopefully when you hear one track from the album, you'll want more and consequently buy the LP)
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Ariel
(Both "Worm Turning Blues" and "And If It Wasn't For You" taken from LP 'A Strange Fantastic Dream)
Ariel formed in mid-1973, after the breakup of Spectrum. When Spectrum drummer Ray Arnott announced he was leaving to join Ross Wilson's new band Mighty Kong, Putt and Rudd decided to end the band rather than try to recruit a new member, feeling that it wouldn't be possible to recreate the special spirit of the group. Within a few months of Spectrums's farewell performance a new band (its name taken from the character in Shakespeare's "The Tempest") was up and running. Ironically, the two new members, Tim and Nigel, had originally come to Melbourne to work with Ross Wilson and Ross Hannaford on their new project (which became Mighty Kong) and it was after they departed that Ray Arnott was invited to join, thus precipitating the split of Spectrum!
Strong record company interest in Ariel quickly led to a contract with EMI's progressive Harvest imprint. Their superb debut single Jamaican Farewell looked set to repeat the early success of Spectrum but it managed to reach only No.34, its success hampered by lack of airplay, especially in Sydney. They toured as support to Gary Glitter November 1973 and released their excellent first LP 'Strange Fantastic Dream' in December, with writing credits split fairly evenly between Gaze and Rudd. According to Noel McGrath, the album was also the first use of Moog synthesizer on an Australian rock record. It fared very well commercially and critically, reaching No 12 in the LP charts in February 1974.
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Ross Ryan
("Goodbye Mitchy" was taken from LP 'A Poem You Can Keep', "There Is No Pain" was taken from LP 'My Name Means Horse')
Ross Ryan is one of Australia's most respected and successful singer-songwriters. Like his contemporaries Greg Quill and Mike McClellan, he emerged from the folk scene, and enjoyed brief chart prominence in the mid-70's with his 1974 hit single "I Am Pegasus", for which he is probably best remembered these days.
In March, 1973 he released his second album, 'A Poem You Can Keep', which got his career off to a flying start. Produced by Dawkins, engineered by former Abbey Rd chief Martin Benge, and arranged by Peter Martin, it spawned a hit single "I Don’t Want To Know About It", won 'Record Of The Year' at the Australian Record Federation Awards for 1973 and earned Ross a second gong as 'Best New Talent'.
In November '73, Ross supported Helen Reddy on her national tour, coinciding with the release of his new single, "I Am Pegasus" (b/w "Country Christine Waltz"). It was a runaway success, becoming one of the most successful Australian singles of the year, and the biggest hit of Ross's career, earning him the first of four first gold records. It went to #1 in Sydney, reached #9 nationally, and stayed on the top forty for an extraordinary twenty-three weeks. 
Ross made a memorable appearance at the 1974 Sunbury Festival in January, followed up by the release of his third album in January 1974 and the subsequent release of the single "Orchestra Ladies". Propelled by the huge success of the "Horse" single, the Horse LP was also a major hit -- it sold 15,000 copies within two weeks, in March it was declared "gold", and it peaked at #3 nationally in April 1974. It eventually earned Ross three gold record awards and stayed in the charts for 17 weeks. In March Ross made another short US trip, performing concert and clubs dates, after which he briefly returned home, when Prime Minister Gough Whitlam presented him with gold record awards for both the album My Name Means Horse and "I am Pegasus" [extract from Milesago]
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Pirana
("Then Came The Light" taken from LP Pirana II)
For anyone who is hopelessly hooked on progressive and classic rock of the 70s, Pirana is simply a must. "Pirana" was a short-lived act from the 70s, which was one of the major driving forces and attractions in Australian music scene in these years.
Pirana was formed in 1970 by Stan White (keyboards), Jim Duke-Yonge (drums), Tony Hamilton (vocals, guitar) and Graeme Thompson (bass) as a new musical venture for the latter three following their tenure in pop band Gus & The Nomads. Their first recording were as a backing band for a solo album by Greg Quill, but in 1971 they were signed by legendary record label Harvest and soon got busy making their debut album.
Pirana I hit the shops in 1971, and while their debut album didn't exactly set the world on fire the band quickly established themselves as a popular live act. For anyone who is hopelessly hooked on progressive and classic rock of the 70s, it's simply a must. Too often the description of their music is concentrated on the influence of Santana - yes, that's difficult to deny, but "Pirana" performed their own unique version of quite heavy prog rock balancing on the verge of acid/hard, not unlike their British peers, with powerful drumming, roaring guitars and lengthy Hammond solos. In my humble opinion the influence of Santana is grossly exaggerated. "Stand Back" from the first album is a true masterpiece featuring exceptional drumming solos, while the opening track from the second album - "Pirana" - is mesmerizing tune inspired by Maurice Ravel's "Bolero".
Pirana
Stan White left the band shortly after the release of their first album and was replaced by Keith Greig. And with White out of the band guitarist Hamilton had a more prominent place as a songwriter for Pirana's second effort Pirana II, issued late in 1972. A direct result of that was that the band started moving slightly away from their Latin-inspired sound. They never managed to hit the big time with their second LP unfortunately, not even a superb performance at 1972's Sunbury festival gave the band the true commercial breakthrough they required. Indeed, the latter actually cemented their reputation as a Santana-influenced act, and while their credibility as a live unit soared their merits, their studio efforts remained unrecognised.
Grieg left the band in 1972, and a flurry of line-up changes followed for the next couple of years, until Pirana fizzled out to disbandment in late 1974.
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The Ormsby Brothers
(Both "Da Doo Ron Ron" and "The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore" taken from their Selftitled LP)
The Ormsby Brothers were: Neville Ormsby, Michael Ormsby and Adrian Ormsby. Their sound was almost like the USA Osmond Brothers who were enjoying world-wide success at the time, and I'm sure these two groups have been confused at some stage by the unwarey.
The boys were born in New Zealand and began vocalising together as a group in 1967. In September, 1971 they moved to Australia. Their first single was 'I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus' which was released just prior to Christmas, 1972. The following year they recorded Lesley Gore's 'You Don't Own Me' which became their first and only hit, making the top ten in all states. It reached #2 and stayed in the charts for 20 weeks. Music producer Peter Dawkins said he looked back on that single, engineered by former Beatles studio assistant and later Sherbet producer Richard Lush, as the best of his early Australian productions.
Following on from the single's success they released an album entitled The Ormsby Brothers which won for them the 1973 Easy Listening Vocal Award presented by the Australian Federation of Commercial Broadcasters.
The latter part of the year was crammed with television and live appearances all over Australia with the highlight being part of the first concert presented at the Sydney Opera House.
In December they released their next single, 'Sweet Virginia' which sold only moderately and since 1975 they've been singing in the Sydney club circuit. Although they were not contracted to a record company at the end of 1977, they had plans of putting together an album in the near future.
Strangely enough, Chris Spencer's Who's Who Of Australian rock makes no refernce to this group.
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Johnny Farnham
("My Love" from the LP 'Johnny Farnham sings the big hits of '73 Live' and "Don't You Know It's Magic" from the LP "Hits Magic & Rock 'N' Roll")
John Farnham, aka Farnsy, Johnny, Whispering Jack and The Voice is an iconic Australian entertainer whose career has spanned over four decades.
Farnham was born on the 1st July 1949 in England and moved to Melbourne at the age of 10 and has lived here ever since. This wannabe plumber took a break from his apprenticeship in order to pursue a music career which has seen him become one of Australia's best-loved performers with a career spanning over 40 years.
In 1967, Sadie (The Cleaning Lady) was his first hit which topped the Australian charts for six-weeks running.  Selling 180,000 copies in Australia, "Sadie" was the highest selling single by an Australian artist of the decade. Farnham's debut studio album, Sadie was issued in April 1968.
He later released a cover of BJ Thomas's "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head" in 1969, which also reached the #1 position on the Australian charts.
Most of his early 70's material could be classified as being both Pop and Cabaret music, but he soon reinvented himself in the early 80's with the help of Glenn Wheatley to be labelled as one of the best voices in Australian rock.
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The Coloured Balls
("Whole Lotta Shakin" taken from the LP 'Ball Power')
Original line-up: Mick Hadley (vocals); Robbie Van Delft (lead guitar); Rob Dames (bass guitar); Peter Miles (drums); Sam Shannon (vocals).
The band was formed in Brisbane following the breakup of the Purple Hearts. Mick and Rob were from the Hearts; Robbie was from the Bowery Boys; and Peter and Sam had had a variety of experience.
In 1971, Lobby Lloyd took over on guitar and the group, all sporting 'skinhead' hair styles, gained a reputation as a loud band after the style of the Aztecs.
By August 1972, the line-up had changed totally and included Trevor Young (drums); Lobby Lloyd (guitar); John Miglands (bass guitar); and Bobsie Millar (guitar). The band's first notable single was "Liberate Rock", which was written by Lobby. Most of the backing was provided by the Aztecs prior to the hew Coloured Balls being formed. Although it didn't quite make the charts, the single did make history being the first in Australia to be advertised on radio.
The Coloured Balls

The follow-up was "Mr. Mean Mouth"/"Love Me Girl" in May '73. Then in September they enjoyed their first chart success with a revival of Elvis Presley's "Mess Of Blues". Later, in November, came a single called "Flash", and in December they released their best selling 'Ball Power' album.
Another single by the boys, "Love You Babe", charted midway through 1974, but unfortunately the group disbanded not long after. However, in May 1976, an album entitled The First Supper Last, which was recorded in 1972 with the line-up at that stage, was released on the Rainbird label.
Lobby initially went solo, recording for Bootleg Records. In 1976 he released an LP with the Southern Electric Band called Obsecration which was also on the Rainbird label. Then, in 1977 he left for England. Trevor Young turned up in popular band, Fingerprint, in 1977.
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Jeannie Lewis
("Fasten Your Wings With Love" taken from the LP 'Free Fall Through Featrherless Flight')
Jeannie Lewis is widely acknowedged as one of Australia's most accomplished, versatile and passionate vocal artists, and a performer whose work crosses many musical boundaries. Jeannie started her singing career on the Sydney folk and jazz circuit in the mid-1960's then moved into the rock scene in the early 70s, establishing a strong reputation through her dynamic performances and powerful interpretations of songs both on stage and on the outstanding recordings she made in those years. During the 80's and 90's she continued to develop and broaden her career, with roles in musical theatre and the unique one-woman cabaret shows that reflected her growing love of Latin music, and her commitment to the often-underrated role of women's voices in music. Jeannie can adapt her voice to a large and eclectic range of material -- folk, rock, blues, opera, torch songs, Broadway tunes, tango and jazz -- and she is recognised both here and overseas as a peerless interpreter, with a rare ability to make almost any material her own.
Jeannie Lewis

In 1973 EMI issued Jeannie's classic debut album, Free Fall Through Featherless Flight, arranged and directed by Carlos. Its cover was designed by renowned Australian artist Martin Sharp whose first record designs were the classic psychedelic covers for Cream's Disraeli Gears and Wheels of Fire LP's
Backing Jeannie on the album was an all-star lineup including Michael Carlos on Moog, organ and harpsichord, Mike Wade and Mike Reid (guitars), Ken Firth (bass; ex-Tully), Jamie McKinley (ex-Cool Bananas, piano), Greg Henson (drums), Alan Lee (percussion), Marcia Hines (backing vocals), Shayna Stewart (backing vocals, ex-Extradition, Tully), The Fidelio String Quartet and a wind section. The album won the Australian Radio Record Award for the Best Australian LP of 1974, despite receiving virtually no radio support whatsoever outside the ABC, although it was featured on Chris Winter's pioneering show Room To Move, and gained further airplay in the early days of radio station 2JJ (Double Jay) in Sydney.
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The La De Das
("The Place" taken from the LP 'Rock and Roll Sandwich')
Original line-up: Bryan Harris (drums); Trevor Wilson (bass); Bruce Howard (organ/sax); Phillip Key (lead vocals); Kevin Borich (lead guitar).
The band formed in New Zealand in 1965 and after reaching the top there (with their single, "Hey Baby" which made number one), they left for Sydney two years later.
On their arrival in Australia they received little attention from their recording company who at first refused to let them record. As a result they fell into a rut working steadily, but uneventfully, in Melbourne and Sydney. Then early in 1968 they decided to buy new instruments and develop a new act. The change brought with it a renewed interest in the band and in March, 1969 they released their highly acclaimed 'Happy Prince' album. Two months later they left Australia to try their luck in England. Other, more renowned groups, had tried before them without success and the La De Das found the going just as tough. They returned in April, 1970 minus Trevor and his place was taken by Reno Tehei (ex-Genesis and Compulsion). In the meantime their album had sold steadily during their absence, and later in the year Bryan left and he was replaced by Keith Barber.
More line-up changes occurred in January, 1971 when Bruce left to form a duo with Trevor, and Reno also moved out. The band added Peter Roberts and reformed as follows: Phil Keys (vocals and guitar); Peter Roberts (bass); Keith barber (drums); and Kevin Borich (vocals and guitar).
They consolidated with the new format and released a new single, "Sweet Girl"/"I Can't Find A Reason". Then in November, '71 came the breakthrough they had been waiting for when they made the charts with one of their biggest hits "Gonna See My Baby Tonight". Another hit was achieved six months later with "Morning Good Morning". But, just as they seemed destined to become the superstars they had tried so long to be, the band experienced another setback. In September, '72 Peter and Phil left to form the Band of Light. But not to be discouraged, the band took on Ronnie Peel (ex-One Ton Gypsy and Thunderclap Norman) to play bass and worked as a trio.
The new three piece format created a new vigour, with Kevin having to work harder on guitar, and in November, 72 they released an exciting single called "I'll Never Stop Loving You". From there they settled into a hectic pattern of work and in July, 1973 they issued their notorious Rock'n'Roll Sandwich album.
The following year was their last together, but included a single, "The Place" (May, 74), a tour with Gary Glitter (July, 74) and also a re-entry into the charts with Chuck Berry's old rocker "Too Pooped to Pop".
Kevin went on to form Kevin Borich Express while Ronnie recorded under the alias of Rockwell T. James as well as playing with John Paul Young's All Stars.
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This post consists of an MP3 rip (320kps) taken from my vinyl copy of the EMI sampler, which I recently found at a flee market for the pricely sum of $2. Also included is full album artwork and label scans, plus all photos featured here. Please note that a majority of the band bio's were sourced from: Australian Encyclopedia of Rock (Noel McGrath, 1978. Outback Press) and the Milesago Website.
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Track Listing
01 - Worm Turning Blues (Ariel)
02 - Goodbye Mitchy (Ross Ryan)
03 - Then Came The Light (Pirana)
04 - My Love (Johnny Farnham)

05 - Da Doo Ron Ron (The Ormsby Brothers)
06 - Whole Lotta Shakin' (Coloured Balls)
07 - Don't You Know It's Magic (Johnny Farnham)
08 - The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore (The Ormsby Brothers)
09 - Fasten Your Wings With Love (Jeannie Lewis)
10 - The Place (The La De Da's)
11 - There Is No Pain (Ross Ryan)
12 - And If It Wasn't For You (Ariel)

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EMI Sampler Link (101Mb)
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Friday, June 14, 2013

Black Sabbath - Live In Australia, Brisbane (25-04-2013) Bootleg

(U.K 1968–2006, 2011–Present)
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Over the past four decades, there have been various Black Sabbath lineups, and Ozzy Osbourne has also had a successful solo career since the release of 1980's Blizzard of Ozz. There was an attempt in 2001 by the original members to record an album with producer Rick Rubin but it came to nothing. Now, sufficient water has passed under the bridge to make them (minus Ward due to contractual wrangles) eager to make it work. It still felt, Rubin has said, "like being in a cage with a lion, keeping them calm", but the results, they agree, were worth it. Their new album '13' sounds more like Black Sabbath than any album since 1973's 'Sabbath Bloody Sabbath' (and my personal favourite by far). Osbourne says 13 is the most important record of his career. 
It’s hard to imagine that nearly forty years have passed since the founders of heavy metal, Black Sabbath, graced our fine shores. Whilst Sabbath reunions themselves are somewhat of an event in themselves, the fact that they’ve finally made it Down Under this time around is nothing short of a miracle.
Sabbath have just completed multiple shows in all major cities around Australia during April and May and I have managed to source an A+ bootleg of the Brisbane Concert, held on the 25th April at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre.
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Gig Review 1
by Jody MacGregor @fasterlouder.com.au

Jody MacGregor spends a night in the company of a cackling, cuckooing paranoid Ozzy Osbourne at Black Sabbath’s first Australian show since 1974.
I almost didn’t go to see Black Sabbath. What if Ozzy Osbourne is the same mumbling shambles on stage he was in The Osbournes? What if he’s back on the drugs and drifts through the night in a half-aware haze? What if my precious youthful memories of listening to Sabbath and being disaffected are tainted forever?
I shouldn’t have worried. From the opening of "War Pigs" on wards he sings exactly like you want him to. He cackles like a witch with a mouth full of baby fingers and he says “Oh Lord Yeah” like Ozzy Osbourne says “Oh Lord Yeah!”
The tightness of the rest of the band is less surprising, though still impressive. Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler have been doing this forever, and Tommy Clufetos has drummed for Ozzy’s solo tours enough to be down with all this stuff (he’s not the guy who drums on their new album though: that’s Brad Wilk from Rage Against the Machine).

  “Ozzy cackles like a witch with a mouth full of baby fingers.”

During "Into the Void" Ozzy dunks his entire head in a bucket of water, which he’ll later pour over the Songs from their first two albums get the most play, although they pull one or two from all over the place. "Snowblind" from Black Sabbath Vol. 4 (“Here’s a song about something we don’t do anymore because we’re too fucking old!”) gets an outing, and so do two new songs from 13. Both fit seamlessly alongside the classics, even though Ozzy briefly forgets the name of the second one.
"Fairies Wear Boots" sounds ridiculously heavy, everything crashing together like pealing church bells. Ozzy takes a deserved break after that for an instrumental version of "Symptom of the Universe". Nice as it would have been to have original drummer Bill Ward be part of this line-up, having a younger man on the team comes in handy when he plays a lengthy drum solo so the older men can finish off a cup of tea backstage. The crowd are into it, shouting every time Clufetos raises his sticks as if he’s finished before bringing them back down for another bash.

The full band return for "Iron Man", which is obviously loved, but so are lesser numbers like "Dirty Women". Somebody even throws a bra on stage during that one, which Ozzy gleefully puts on, first on his chest and then wrapped around his head like Princess Leia’s buns. When he says “I want to see ’em!” again I’m pretty sure he’s still talking about our hands in the air, but one lady in the crowd gets her breasts out anyway.

They save "Paranoid" for the encore because of course they bloody do, and it’s amazing because of course it bloody is. I’m ashamed to have doubted.

Gig Review 2
by Andrew McMillen (@NiteShok)

There are surprisingly few frills to tonight’s stage production. At the back, a giant video screen is intercut by what might be intended to be spiderwebs. A smaller video screen sits beneath the tall drum riser. There's coloured lights and strobes. No pyrotechnics. Two men perched up in the rafters ensure that twin spotlights remain on the singer at all times. A handful of cameramen track the players for the big screen, alongside occasional file footage of atom bombs exploding and some sort of cheesy-looking undead. There's no shortage of religious iconography: crosses etched into the guitarist’s fretboard, a big gold bastard hanging from his neck. One of his guitar straps bears his surname in bold font. As if everyone in this room doesn't already know it.

To think that an industrial accident nearly robbed us of one of the finest and most original guitarists of all time. Tony Iommi doesn't do much more on stage than eke out riff after evil riff, custom thimbles fitted snugly over the tips of his stumpy middle fingers, occasionally peering over his blue specs and throwing up the horns to his disciples in the front row. I'm seated on his side of the stage, so I've got nearly two hours to watch closely. He gives off an avuncular air of quiet confidence, and wears his smart leather jacket throughout. I've seen a few guitarists in my time, but this man is in a class of his own. The singer occasionally prostrates himself before Black Sabbath’s sole continual member; he refers to him as “the real ‘Iron Man’”, and waves his arms in that classic we-are-not-worthy pose.


Indeed.Ozzy Osbourne is as enthusiastic as any 64 year-old on the planet. The close-up camera shots show him reading from a teleprompter, straining to recall which syllables to place the emphasis on. Who gives a good goddamn shit, though? That he's still living and breathing without the help of machines is commendable, especially since he was back on the sauce and blow as recently as last February. This crowd loves him for the caricature he has long been. How many musicians can throw their lives open to the fickle, vain world of reality television and still command respect like this man? Which other 64-year old singer’s rider includes a bucket of water – regularly used to dunk one’s head into, and/or throw onto the front rows – black nail polish, and waterproof eyeliner?

Geezer Butler is an unassuming bassist if ever there was one, yet he’s stacked every song so full of clever, tricky phrasing that he rarely has time to look up and acknowledge that he’s playing to a full room of 13,000. Tom Larkin – drummer of touring support act Shihad – was spot-on when he described Butler’s dextrous playing as “wrestling his bass like it’s a live eel”. (Worth noting: Shihad were strong earlier, their set a half-hour of power consisting of songs spanning 1993 –'Factory', 'Screwtop' – to 2002’s 'Comfort Me'.)

Behind the kit is not founding stickman Bill Ward but a skinny workhorse named Tommy Clufetos. He's a flashy player, too – arms raised high at every opportunity, emphasising each cymbal crash – probably owing more to the occasion of playing with these three legends than musical necessity. He's smooth, though, no doubt. His drum solo is backed by the most intense multi-colour strobe light display I've ever experienced. Epileptics beware.


The song selection and set structure is immaculate, though the two tracks from their forthcoming album 13 go down like the proverbial zeppelin. Hardcore fans will find it tough to bitch about the breadth of material covered, all performed with verve and precision. If a weak link must be nominated, it’s Osbourne's wavering octaves and drill-sergeant demeanour. Students of their 1998 live album Reunion have already heard every bit of stage banter in his repertoire. (The setlist isn’t dissimilar, either.) I would've thought that there’s only so many times a crowd could be asked to SHOW ME YOUR FUCKIN' HANDS! before the novelty wore off, but this lot are a dedicated and willing bunch. 39 years between Australian tours speaks for itself, I suppose. And if there's one man in metal worth showing your hands to, it's Mr Osbourne.
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This post consists of an MP3 rip (320kps) of a soundboard recording taken from their Brisbane show (sourced from Musictravellerstwo.blogspot with thanks) along with full album artwork (thanks to LiborioFriki).  Most of the concert photos depicted in this post were sourced from Charly Cameron with gratitude. The quality of this recording is outstanding and the band was certainly on fire this night. This is a 2CD set.
Remember Me !
Black Sabbath Brisbane set list
01 - War Pigs
02 - Into the Void
03 - Under the Sun
04 - Snowblind
05 - Electric Funeral
06 - Black Sabbath
07 - Behind the Wall of Sleep
08 - N.I.B.
09 - End of the Beginning
10 - Fairies Wear Boots
11 - Symptom of the Universe (Instrumental)
12 - Drum Solo
13 - Iron Man
14 - God Is Dead?
15 - Dirty Women
16 - Children of the Grave
Encore:
17 - Paranoid (with “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath” intro)
 
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Black Sabbath Link (237Mb) New Link 24/05/2017
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