Posts Tagged ‘Esoteric Recordings’

Esoteric Recordings and Cherry Red Records are proud to announce the release of an official limited edition deluxe boxed set of Yes founder Chris Squire’s legendary 1975 solo album “FISH OUT OF WATER” on 27th April 2018.

Recorded in the late Spring and Summer of 1975 whilst Yes was on hiatus as members recorded their respective solo albums, Fish Out Of Water was a breath-taking work, and equal in standard to any Yes album in terms of sheer invention and creativity. The album sessions were a collaboration between Chris Squire and his friend Andrew Pryce Jackman, a gifted arranger who had been a member of The Syn, Squire’s pre-Yes group. The sessions saw contributions from former Yes drummer Bill Bruford, Yes keyboard player Patrick Moraz and noted King Crimson musician Mel Collins and Jimmy Hastings. Released in November 1975, Fish Out Of Water was a Top 30 chart hit in the UK and made the US Billboard Top 75 album chart, going on to sell nearly 500,000 copies worldwide.

The highlight of this limited edition deluxe boxed set is a stunning new 5.1 Surround Sound mix (exclusive to this set on an NTSC / Region Free DVD), along with a new stereo mix, from the original multi-track master tapes by Jakko Jakszyk and a new re-master of the original 1975 mix by Paschal Byrne.  Fish Out Of Water also includes four bonus tracks of the single edits of ‘Lucky Seven’ and ‘Silently Falling’, along with both sides of the 1981 single by CHRIS SQUIRE and ALAN WHITE; ‘Run With the Fox’ and Return of the Fox (appearing on CD for the first time).

The boxed set also includes a replica 180 gram gatefold LP with poster of Fish Out Of Water (mastered and cut from the original tapes at Abbey Road studios), along with two seven inch singles of ‘Lucky Seven’ b/w ‘Silently Falling’ and ‘Run With the Fox’ b/w ‘Return of the Fox’, both in picture sleeves. To complete the content is a visual DVD (NTSC / Region Free) featuring the 1975 Fish Out Of Water promotional film featuring the songs Hold Out Your Hand and ‘You By My Side’, along with a 2006 interview with Chris Squire conducted by Jon Kirkman and a 2006 audio commentary by Chris Squire. Finally, the set also contains a 36-page book with an essay by Sid Smith featuring exclusive interviews with Bill Bruford, Patrick Moraz, Gregg Jackman and Jakko Jakszyk.

Always justly proud of his first solo album, it was Chris Squire’s long held wish that a 5.1 Surround mix would be undertaken of the work someday. This Esoteric Recordings edition finally brings this to fruition and is a fitting tribute to the artistry of Chris and his collaborator on the recordings, Andrew Pryce Jackman.

Alongside this deluxe edition, there will also be a new 2 CD edition of Fish Out Of Water which features the new Stereo mix, the new re-mastered original stereo mix and four bonus tracks.

The boxed set and 2 CD edition can be pre-ordered directly from Cherry Red Records website store:

 

Esoteric Recordings are pleased to be kick starting the new year with brand new reissues of two classic CURVED AIR  albums: Air Conditioning and Air Cut. Beautifully packaged, both classic albums have been given the Esoteric Recordings reissue treatment: AIR CONDITIONING has been newly remastered from the original tapes, and expanded with 11 bonus tracks drawn from previously unreleased studio out-takes and BBC sessions, while the new definitive CD edition of AIR CUT has been remastered from the original tapes for the first time ever! Both boast illustrated booklets with new essays & interviews.

Up first is a new expanded and re-mastered 2 CD edition of Curved Air’s classic 1970 album “Air Conditioning”. This new edition of “Air Conditioning” also includes an illustrated booklet with a new essay by Malcolm Dome featuring an exclusive interviews with band members.

And secondly we have a new official re-mastered edition of Curved Air’s classic album “Air Cut”. Originally released on the Warner Bros. label. This new edition of “Air Cut” has been re-mastered from the recently located original master tapes for the very first time (with previous CD editions being taken from vinyl transfers).

Curved Air

 

A 3CD clamshell box set of TODD RUNDGREN’S LEGENDARY PERFORMANCES at the ROXY THEATER IN WEST HOLLYWOOD IN MAY 1978 Includes the entire concert from 23rd MAY 1978 with guests STEVIE NICKS, DARYL HALL & JOHN OATES, RICK DERRINGER, SPENCER DAVIS & KASIM SULTON

Esoteric Recordings is pleased to announce the latest release in the Todd Rundgren Archive series, “ALL SIDES OF THE ROXY 1978”. In May 1978 Todd Rundgren performed a series of concerts at The Roxy Theater in West Hollywood, California with a band comprising members of The Hello People (Bobby Sedita, Larry Tasse, Greg Geddes & Norman Smart) along with keyboard player Moogy Klingman, bassist John Seigler and drummer John “Willie” Wilcox.

The highlight of this residency was a concert on the 23rd May 1978 which was the largest concert simulcast on American FM radio at that time with an estimated audience of over ten million listeners. Hosted by the legendary DJ Wolfman Jack (himself the inspiration for a song on Rundgren’s “Something Anything” album), Todd tore through a wonderful set that included material from both his solo albums (including the recently released “Hermit of Mink Hollow”) and his work with Utopia. He was joined on stage by such illustrious company as Daryl Hall & John Oates, Stevie Nicks, Spencer Davis, Rick Derringer and Kasim Sulton (of Utopia).

This three disc clamshell boxed set includes the entire set from the 23rd May concert over two discs, along with a third disc comprising other soundboard recordings made by Todd during his residence of shows at The Roxy. This release also features an illustrated booklet and is a welcome addition to Esoteric Recordings’ Todd Rundgren Archive series.

Newly re-mastered, this anthology features all of Spirit’s recordings for the Ode and Epic labels between 1968 and 1972 and notably includes the entire mono mix of the band’s self-titled debut album (appearing on CD for the first time), the complete soundtrack to the film The Model Shop, along with original 1968 stereo mix of The Family That Plays Together, associated out-takes, singles and alternate mixes undertaken in 1991 for the Time Circle compilation. It Shall Be also includes an illustrated booklet with essay by Malcolm Dome featuring archive interviews with Randy California and Ed Cassidy.

Esoteric Recordings are pleased to announce the release of a new 5CD remastered clamshell box set by the legendary American band SPIRIT. Formed in Los Angeles in 1967 from the remnants of The Red Roosters, SPIRIT was one of the great bands to emerge on the US West Coast in the Psychedelic era. Featuring the talents of 16 year old guitarist Randy California (who had played guitar with Jimi Hendrix in New York the previous year), his step-father drummer Ed Cassidy along with Jay Ferguson (vocals, percussion), John Locke (keyboards) and Mark Andes (bass), Spirit signed to producer Lou Adler’s newly established Ode Records label in late 1967. Their self-titled debut album appeared some months later and demonstrated the breadth and diversity of the band covering psychedelic, rock and jazz influences and featuring such legendary cuts as Fresh Garbage, Uncle Jack, Topanga Windows, Mechanical World , Elijah and Taurus (the subject of a court case decades later when it was alleged Led Zeppelin had taken the musical structure of the piece as a basis for Stairway to Heaven). The band’s follow-up album, The Family That Plays Together, spawned the hit single I’ve Got a Line on You and was one of their finest works thanks to material such as It Shall Be, Aren’t You Glad, Silky Sam and Darlin’ If. Leading up to the recording of 1969’s Clear album Spirit recorded the soundtrack to Jaques Demy’s film The Model Shop. In 1970 Spirit recorded the classic The Twelve Dreams of Doctor Sardonicus for Epic Records, from which the single Animal Zoo was taken and included excellent material such as Nature’s Way, Mr Skin, Space Child, Morning Will Come and Soldier. Sadly the original line- up of Spirit fell apart some months later leaving just Ed Cassidy and John Locke to assemble a new incarnation of Spirit for 1972’s Feedback, which saw brothers Al and John Staehely join the band on bass and drums respectively. Spirit went on hiatus soon after, although California and Cassidy would continue to tour and record as Spirit on and off until California’s untimely death in 1997.

MOVE Shazam low

The first 2 of our 4 The Move titles are released now “Move” and “Shazam” both deluxe versions come with tons of unreleased, BBC extras material etc and have lovely packaging courtesy of Phil Smee. (who is a massive fan too) . There are also vanilla remastered versions available too.

Esoteric Recordings have done an amazing job on these reissues of the first two albums of The Move – lovely looking and sounding packages with stacks of quality bonus material. Reissues of the year so far? The Move occupy a funny place in rock history. With a string of inventive and relentlessly tuneful singles to their credit (not to mention consistently entertaining albums) they’re the sort of band that should be mentioned in the same breath as the Kinks and the Who, but ask your average punter under forty to name one of their songs and you’re unlikely to get anywhere  Add to that the Jeff Lynne connection, and you’ve got an instant recipe for footnote status.

These two new reissues from Esoteric Recordings provide further proof of just how unjust this situation is. What we have here are packed, deluxe editions of the band’s first two albums.  There have been plenty reissues of this material already, often haphazardly and carelessly assembled. Likely this is another reason for the Move’s legacy being somewhat lesser than it should be, but these two releases are lovingly curated gems that treat the source material and the fans with the respect that they deserve.

Each is available in a single disc ‘vanilla’ edition, containing the original albums with contemporary a & b sides as bonus tracks, or densely packed, nugget-laden deluxe editions which are a true collector’s dreams.

The self titled debut and its surrounding singles (“Night of Fear” and “Flowers in the Rain” etc.) are concise psychedelic pop gems that marry Beatlesque melodies and arrangements with often unhinged source material ala Syd Barrett. Just the ticket for those who find the Beatles too straight and wish that Syd was a little more tuneful, although you’re speaking to the wrong person if you’re looking for an impartial critic of either of those acts here. Recorded over the space of 14 months it’s no wonder that it feels almost like a hits collection. Three cover versions (of tunes originally by Eddie Cochran, James F. Hanley and Moby Grape) illustrate the band’s diverse influences, but it’s Roy Wood’s own compositions that really take this to the next level. Hugely catchy, with clever, often baroque arrangements (which demonstrate just how important Wood’s contribution to ELO would be in the future), these are classic examples of the two and a half minute pop song, peppered with just the right amount of psychedelia and English whimsy. And that thunderous bass really sets them apart from the pack.

There’s also a brace of pre-psychedelic tracks from 1966 when the band were a straight beat act, which are fascinating listens in their own right, while also demonstrating just how much the band’s distinctive sound developed over the following year.

The Move were a very successful singles band, especially early in their career. Five of the first six Move singles placed in the UK top 5, with ‘Blackberry Way’ reaching #1.

The early Move single that failed to chart was ‘Wild Tiger Woman’. Released in August 1968 it was heavier than most of the band’s material, influenced by Jimi Hendrix. It was banned from BBC Radio One due to the line “tied to the bed, she’s waiting to be fed”. The group later stated that they should have released the single’s b-side, ‘Omnibus’, as the a-side.

‘Omnibus’ is enjoyably quirky, and distinctly English. Omnibus was originally the word for a large horse-drawn carriage, and the word bus is a contraction of omnibus. ‘Omnibus’ is sophisticated, with unexpected melodic twists, while the closing guitar solo hints at Bach’s ‘Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring’. Like most of The Move’s material, ‘Omnibus’ was written by Roy Wood – along with The Move’s hits, he’s perhaps best known for the Wizzard’s seasonal glam song ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’.

The combination of loud guitars, pop melody, and vocal harmonies are surprisingly similar to the records that Cheap Trick would make almost a decade later. Cheap Trick are clearly fans of The Move – they’ve released their own covers of ‘California Man’, ‘Brontosaurus’, and ‘Blackberry Way’.

“Shazam” is a totally different beast, but still obviously the work of the same band. And it’s every bit as good as its predecessor too.

Moving on from the short-form pop songs found on the Move (excepting the lovely “Beautiful Daughter”), this is the Move as a heavy proto-prog band, a shoe that fits surprisingly well. All of the things that made the first album so appealing are still evident here – the distinctive harmonies, the huge bass (now played by Trevor Burton) – but there’s less reliance on the studio, and more of a focus on band interplay, which is uniformly impressive. There are some pretty heavy moments here (the surprisingly bluesy “Don’t Make My Baby Blue”), but it never gets clumsy or heavy-handed, and there are reprieves peppered throughout in the form of exquisitely harmonised choruses, not to mention the classical middle section of “Cherry Blossom Clinic Revisited”. Wood only has one new original to offer, but the covers are so well assimilated you’d swear he’d written them too if the source material wasn’t so familiar.

MOVE low

The bonus tracks on the single disc edition show that Wood still had some classic single-worthy material in him too, including their sole UK number one, the Beatlesque “Blackberry Way” and the appealingly jaunty “Curly”. Also addended to the multi-disc version are a treasure trove of BBC recordings in very fine fidelity, which again demonstrate the Move’s mastery of a multitude of styles, as well as their ability to tackle some pretty intimidating source material and not lose their own sense of identity. Great things abound here, but the highlights for this listener are surprising stabs at popular murder ballad “Long Black Veil” and the Nazz’s “Open My Eyes”, as well as a great take on Dusty Springfield’s “Goin’ Back”, which flexes it’s muscles and makes the Byrds version sound like a bit of a pipsqueak .

It’s refreshing to see two such accomplished albums expanded so comprehensively, yet still in a fashion that accentuates their excellence, rather than diluting it down with unnecessary mixes and material best left on the cutting room floor. If these aren’t the best expanded editions released this year, I’ll be very surprised. I can’t wait to check out Esoteric’s treatment of the rest of the band’s catalogue now.

The second pair of Esoteric Recordings “The Move” reissues are released on 27th May, this will be “Looking on” and the full album version of Something Else from the Move . “Looking on” is a double and is only available as double deluxe version . Full track listings can be found on the Esoteric or Cherry Red Website . Hope you will be enjoying the new issues of Move and Shazam.