THE DEFINITIVE HISTORY OF THE WORLD`S FAVOURITE `LOST` BAND FROM THE SIXTIES
Zabadak: `When we were Indians` completes Daltrey`s ultra- high standards via Japanese pipe and harpsichord sounds, truly great, spraying us with more new age music and exquisite vocals as he continues his journey back through childhood days... perfection. After `Dream On` and `English Roses` Peter Daltrey has maintained those high standards of thoroughly gripping hypnotic sounds, and this could well be his best album so far. After a hard day this is the sort of music to unwind to. `The Invisible Man` is similar to the exquisite `English Roses` and with solitary piano chords, tremendous lyrics, plus noble intangible voice of Daltrey`s one is kept riveted (to quote `Bucketful of Brains`: "Daltrey`s miraculously untarnished voice.") A brilliant effort and so what else can we say, but sheer class
(Listen to the title track at www.myspace.com/peterdaltrey)
Wig Out: Daltrey still possesses that magical voice from yesteryear which is why the album stands the test of time so well. ****
Bucketful of Brains: The voice on `Dream On` is instantly recognisable. A melodic earful of `Dust` or `Roundway Hill` will bring it all back home as Daltrey unravels his tender tales in a miraculously untarnished voice amidst gentle melodies. Those with a real feel for the magic of Kaleidoscope and (specifically) Fairfield Parlour will succumb to its spell. Technology notwithstanding, `Tender is the night` and `Ravenswing` with its crystalline harpsichord, echo tracks from `White-Faced Lady.` The passage of time is generally unacknowledged; on the inlay the photo seems to be from the early Sixties, an era lyrically evoked by the strongest cut, `Dust.` Other themes might have been lifted from the Fairfield Parlour songbook, circa 1970. The song remains the same, indeed, rosy-tinted nostalgia the order of the day.
`Dream On` sleeve notes: This is a twelve song gem with Peter Daltrey`s imaginative, literate lyrics and his undiminished gift for a memorable melody or two, very much to the fore. His pure and gentle voice soars over a lush and melodically modern production. The re-imergence of Daltrey from musical retirement is a welcome one and `Dream On` is a worthy beginning.
Unknown Publication: The one striking highlight of `Dream On` is that Peter`s voice has not suffered since the early Seventies and at times tracks on `Dream On` sound like they would not be out of place on `White-Faced Lady.` An autobiographical feel seems to run through the album. `Dream On` is an essential purchase for the lovers of Kaleidoscope and Fairfield Parlour.
On-line record store:PETER DALTRY: WHEN WE WERE INDIANS Once upon a time there was a fantastic UK progressive band called Kaleidoscope, AKA Fairfield Parlour (not to be confused with the US Kaleidoscope band of the same name, who were in a different way equally incredible). Peter Daltry (not related to Roger of the Who) was the UK Kaleidoscope’s leading light and WHEN WE WERE INDIANS is his second solo effort of the late 90’s. Thrilling to myself and all Anglophiles this information should be as this album sees him returning to full creative form with a fantastic blend of shimmering prog-pop. The poetic English vocal style and rich melodic keyboards should thrill anyone who recalls with fondness the great era when English psychedelia morphed into progressivism.
Zabadak: We restate that here (on `English Roses`) there is great beauty (gasp) plus strength of lyrics. Peter Daltrey has one of the best voices still going from the Sixties (kept in prime condition saved from endless live performances) and the time has come to partake of this well kept secret. With his songs he takes us back on a nostalgic look at his life and to his three teenage friends who shared his hopes and dreams. Daltrey has the ability to make us feel a part of this, reminding us of our own youths. `Faye goes Dreaming` sublime drifting phased beauty as Japanese sounding pipe music takes you into a dream. Peter`s quintessential English phrasing. Haunting, magical stuff. Stunning. `English Roses` is an incredible piece of music and the best song we`ve had the pleasure to review in a long time. Peter`s voice hangs, quivers and grabs. The bass grandiose booms splendidly accompanied by some tasteful Spanish guitar (no drums as on many of the tracks.) Staggering. `English Roses` is nothing less than brilliant. We receive many releases here for review and are choosy, but we have no hesitation in recommending this one. If it is mediocrity that you seek then avoid this at all costs.
Wig Out: This (`Dream On`) is immediate with a view from someone who has been through a lot of musical times so that the stories speak for themselves. `Fitzgerald` reminded me of Elton John. Peter recalls his past with 60`s melody lines in a fascinating and distinctive way. He has a clear, English voice. It`s a rich production and some songs like, perhaps, `Richard and I` could become radio classics. Side Two opens with the wistful `Nothing more than this` and I get the feeling that Peter is a bit of a thinker. This is the work of a man reflecting on his career, his thoughts concerning people and places. A mature and most welcome effort. You`ll savour the lovely `Unicorn` and the guitar traces that occupy a place amongst those `Eighteen Summers.`
Zabadak 16 (Steve Douglas): Fans of Peter Daltrey should certainly look out for this new CD. (Candy:The Best of Peter Daltrey) `October` is a piece of dark near psychedelia with a far gutsier vocal than you`d ever expect. It also features a screaming, searing guitar contribution from Peter`s son Oliver. An astonishing piece of work. `Watching girls on Empty-Vee` has a far lighter melody, with a delicate tune picked out over an effective backwash of sound. Different again is `A Linden tree in Chelsea` which has a classical feel to it, while `Magda Bruer in the rain` sets Peter`s voice against a simple piano backing. The three Kaleidoscope tracks stand out as songs from another era. Finally, the title track is a wonderful piece about looking for lost dreams. The concluding guitar solo by Arjen Lucassen that storms the CD to a close is the icing on a very impressive cake. Peter`s voice is as precise and distinctive as ever, his moving lyrics still evoke memories of a time gone by and touch on feelings about time`s passing that we all share, while his melodies grow ever stronger. A must for all fans and a fine introduction to his work.
The Nevergreen album is so special, it's so creative, and the guitar of Damien makes you miss Eddie Pumer's non-presence less. In many ways this is the follow-up to White Faced Lady, although I didn't think of it as that in the first place, being so connected to English mediaval and ancient history. A true piece of art, probably of the kind that usually gets its recognition many years later.
Nevergreen is remarkable in several ways. The obvious point to make about this album is that twenty years ago it would not have been made, or at least not made in this fashion. This is a partnership of distance, made possible by the technological revolution. How many artists in the all embracing field of popular music hit an artistic high three and a half decades after their first recording adventure? Make no mistake, an artistic high for Peter it most certainly is. This is a very intense album, albeit the music is predominantly acoustic based and folkish in influence. The story is fascinating in a magical, fantastic way, successfully keeping banality and sentiment at arms length. There will be claims that Nevergreen is nothing more than White Faced Lady moved back several hundred years but that would be wrong I feel. There are similarities of course, but most writers pursue familiar themes throughout the course of their careers, so it is only to be expected that Peter should retain certain elements from the work which has been generally acknowledged as the best that he has been previously involved with. I feel that the plainest difference between Angel and Betheny is in the way that they effect the lives of others. Angel moves through the White Faced Lady album like a spectral presence that touches the souls of the other characters in a sub-concious fashion--in other words Angel has no control over her 'power' and in fact she probably is unaware of it's existence. Betheny knows that she is special from the very beginning, and she knows that everyone else in the village knows........ The way that she uses her 'power' eventually causes her 'downfall' and it could be said that she has only herself to blame, whereas Angel was always the 'victim' through seemingly no fault of her own. There is though a link between the two girls, in that both of them are 'in love'. So, are the consequences of Bethany's fateful decision to comply with the Butterfly Boy's request any different to those arising from Angel's equally doomed affair with Jon?
At this point I would like to move on to the contribution of Damien. It would be very remiss of me not to praise his guitar playing and compositional skills. The guitar themes are the foundation stones upon which most of the album tracks are built, but for me, the most important factor regarding the guitar is that it actually 'sounds' like a guitar. That probably comes across as a very obvious and rather foolish statement, but what I mean by it is that the guitar sounds like a natural instrument that is made of wood rather than being plastic or some such man-made material. It sounds like a guitar which has absorbed the sweat of a thousand hours of playing, of a million tunes, a piece of the player himself. It sounds like acoustic guitars used to sound on record back in the 60s and early 70s. The nimble picking is like a mountain spring tumbling down from the heights to the plains, nourishing the village and our ears in the process. Favourite individual tracks? Difficult to choose but 'The Girl' has a more commercial , irresistable hook than just about any song that you've heard in the charts for donkey's years. 'God's Circled Stones'--Pagan Rant! Spoken word tracks have a reputation for being rather ridiculous and pompously overblown. No such problems throughout this album. Peter has a mesmerising, hypnotic delivery--as precise as his singing. 'Hammers and Nails'--this could have been on 'From Home To Home'! Intense, dramatic--the whole album builds up to this climax in much the same way as 'WFL' gathered pace towards 'Freefall' and the succeeding tracks.
Finally a plea to the two gentleman concerned. Please carry on with this long-distance love-affair. The potential in this partnership is there for all to hear in this album. It would be tragic if this were to be a one-off release. It would be even more tragic if this music doesn't reach the number of ears that it deserves to.
`Nevergreen` - Mark Coyle:`The perfect mixture of technology and folk...`
Those who recall with affection the 60s prog-rock/psychedelic outfit Kaleidoscope and its later incarnation, Fairfield Parlour, will be delighted that songsmith/vocalist Peter Daltrey is still beavering away at the musical coalface. His latest albums showcase the compositional craftmanship that is his trademark, along with his singularly precise, very English vocal delivery. Vivid imagery is set to melodies that linger with a pervasively haunting, melancholic quality. `Tambourine Days` is the more immediately accessible work of the two — a collection of songs awash with Daltrey's brand of wistful nostalgia, both personal and general. The music and lyrics are an acoustic delicacy that creates an aural landscape shimmering with emotion. `Nevergreen`, a concept album evoking memories of Kaleidoscope's acclaimed "White Faced Lady", came about after Damien Youth, a Daltrey admirer living in New Orleans, contacted him via his website to say he'd written a song for him. Duly impressed, Daltrey encouraged Youth to work up some new material. They've never met — nor even spoken — yet "Nevergreen" is an ambitiously developed and deftly executed succession of tracks pursuing an epic theme, drawing inspiration from a dark and brooding medieval England
Russell Newmark/Record Collector/April 2001
PETER DALTREY 'Tambourine Days' Chelsea Records CRCD
000110 (CD-R) (51m21s) 2000
Another Zabadak favourite returns with a new offering. Since his return to the music business, ex Kaleidoscope/Fairfield Parlour front-man Peter Daltrey has been quietly assembling a body of work which is impressive by anyone's standards. His fifth solo album, 'Tambourine Days' has been on the launch-pad for some time, but thankfully it is now with us and a rich, varied offering it proves to be. Peter's usual nostalgic themes are here in abundance, but in no way is this just a cosy trip down memory lane. Several of the songs have an ominous undertow, a 'where did it all go wrong' outlook which lends an air of melancholy to the album. This is not the place to come for shallow diversions, yet there is a light touch to be found in several of the tracks that prevents the album from drowning in wistful depression.
'Stars And Leaves': The album opens with a tribute to Peter's ex- bandmate, the late and much lamented Steve Clark. It's difficult to avoid being overly sentimental in such circumstances, but Peter has managed to create a lovely, fitting memorial to his friend. ("Friends are like leaves/ The devil's in the wind/ Tossed and torn away/ Friends are everything")
'England': A song of reflection. The lyrics mostly consist of a list with each line beginning (" I am the one who...") This gives the song a strangely powerful, down-beat manner. ("And then they pulled the houses down/ We don't recognise this town/ London Bridge is falling down/ Everything goes round and round...")
"The Waterboy': Another gorgeous Daltrey ballad, with that almost inevitable air of loss and regret. ("l am drowning in my time...")
'St Julien': Probably the most intriguing track on the album. This nine minute epic fully exploits the Daltrey flair for narrative which made works such as 'The Sky Children', 'Emily' and 'White Faced Lady' so special. Peter unfolds another dark tale over a positively subterranean backing - your ears will strain to catch the buried mumbles, whispers and strange noises that permeate the fabric of the track. The instrumental coda is as doom-filled a piece of music as you will ever hear. ("How can we tempt the angels, bring them closer to us in this world of men?").
'Everything's Alright': Light relief after the sturm and drang of 'St Julien'. This peppy little pop song will get your feet tapping and make you feel...well, alright! ("Everything is so good around you/ Everything's alright")
'Have A Nice Day, Charlie': A cool, jazzy electric piano introduces this remarkable track. A portrait of the little man who murdered a big dream. In measured, even tones Peter condemns a monster. ("And then we went to Woodstock with our pockets stashed with dreams/ Above the music I thought / heard somebody scream : Have a nice day, Charlie").
'Lifelines': A medium paced rocker featuring Peter's son Oliver on electric guitar. Once again the prevailing mood is one of detachment. ("l don't know anything about lifelines/ The whole damn thing's a mystery to me").
"Diamonds Everywhere': Ah! Here we are - the best song on the album, and one of the best songs of this, and any other year. Over the top? Maybe, but hell, don't just take my word for it - go and hear this song! This is a spiritual sequel to 'Days In The Rain', one of the highlights of Peter's 'When We Were Indians' album. Instead of the rain of the 1950s, we are transported back to the mid-60s, a time when everything and everyone was beginning to emerge from the dull chrysalis and spread their shining wings. A time when everything sparkled. A time when the snow was deep and glistening. A time when there were indeed 'Diamonds Everywhere'! Swirling, whirling, and yes, kaleidoscopic! This song is brilliant. It's like drowning in the best champagne! It's like winning the lottery! It's like the song of a Nightingale choir! It's Jimmy Stewart in 'It's a Wonderful Life'! It's a cascade of angels! And if Peter happens to read this, I have to tell him that these diamonds are all bigger than the Ritz! ("...and we ran like kids into the heart of winter/ Back then when winters were real/ And diamonds everywhere")
'Country Dance': No point in trying to top the preceding track, so wisely this is something completely different. Once more the words cut a deep furrow. ("Come see me hobbled, cobbled now/ Beneath the cross-lit spire-stepped fields/ The hanging of the crow").
'Tambourine Days': The album closes with the infectious riff of the title track. This song harks back to Peter's youthful days as a Mod in the early 60s as he wonders whatever became of his old friends, his hopes, his dreams, his Tambourine Days ("Wasn't it strange hearing her name?/ It started me thinking about those Tambourine Days").
What are we left with when the music stops? Personally this album always fills me with a sense of loss. Lost youth, lost love, lost dreams, lost friends, lost innocence. I'm probably making it sound as if 'Tambourine Days' rates on the gloominess scale somewhere just below Joy Division, but no...it just subtly stimulates senses and emotions that are usually left well alone in this wide, wondrous world known as 'Pop Music'. It's another very fine collection presented by a master of his trade. It started me thinking.....
'Heroine' is now Peter Daltrey's 6th solo album (since 1993's 'Dream On')! A high productivity, but also maintaining a high standard.
Opener 'Anne's House' maintains the normal style & mood that we've come to expect from Peter, whose voice is still in really fine fettle! Nostalgic about his old band's days, and a certain trip to Amsterdam - the house in question being Anne Frank's!?!
Now it is memories of 1957 with 'Alma Cogan Saturdays' as the piano and drums march majestically onwards...very attractive keyboard motif here - a fine piece!
'The Night Natalie Wood Went Swimming' is an extremely moody affair, but one is kept magnetised.
'The Unicorn' which was originally released back in 1993 on the 'Dream On' cassette (and subsequent Voiceprint CD a couple of years afterwards), and still is one of Peter's best numbers. Here it is done quite differently, more bouncy & lively, though perhaps not quite as embracing as the more maudlin reflective original...nevertheless beautiful prose....unashamedly nostalgic "I believe in yesterday, nostalgia has no cure. Memory and love and hope are the things that will endure. I'm no longer scared of ghosts or things I haven't tried. The Unicorn is with me now and we laugh until we cry". We still don't know who she is!?!
As you may gather, this is a collection of songs with a theme of famous (sort of) females, or heroines if you will, but with a more profound message contained within! 'Did Audrey Hepburn Ever Cry?' is a little different to what Peter has previously done - some brilliant keyboard notes.
'White And Blue' is a song about Debbie Harry with some arresting sax - very pretty.
'The Hills Above Mayenne' sounds slightly Enyaish - there's a harpsichord-like texture to take us back to the sixties.
'Magda Bruer In The Rain' is a very gentle ballad about a German girl and was originally released on the 'Candy' CD!
The last three tracks: 'Lily', 'The Rain Letter' and 'I Want To Live In America', are fine tracks. 'I Want To Live In America' certainly with repeated plays has the chance to become a classic: "I've been dreaming of Anne Frank...I want to hold her in my arms...so we can dance...come see us dance".
Still seemingly quite unbelievable that Peter Daltrey has never really had any chart success! Fickle youth and fickle old age! Another excellent and enjoyable effort!
Ron Cooper/Zabadak 2002
Been listening to The Last Detail.
From the second play onwards it's been impossible for me to reach any other conclusion except that this is one of Peter's best albums, and very probably THE best.
From first glance it has so much going for it including a new collaboration with Eddy Pumer and sterling contributions from Oli and Arjen. Dig a little deeper and you discover that Peter is on inspired form. This is a varied, eclectic collection that is as articulate as any of Peter's previous work but, vitally, this album ROCKS! The pace is a roller-coaster throughout. The feel is gritty and real. If "Heroine" wore a 'feminine' coat, "The Last Detail" is masculine and tough, but like all of the best Hollywood heroes it has a sensitive side and isn't afraid to show it. All of Peter's musical character traits and themes are present and correct: Americana, literature, compassion for all God's creatures, and those inevitable ruminations on Peter's own past, but there's a kinetic kick, a dynamism and confidence that weaves the fabric of the respective parts into a truly outstanding whole. Can't decide on a favourite track as there are too many candidates, but Jesus......don't ever call your daughter 'Angel'!
Mick Capewell/Review Guru
`TATTOO` by Peter Daltrey & Damien Youth
`Tattoo`, the album, kicks off with "Tattoo", the song, and you know straightaway that this is going to be a different ride. The acoustic guitar starts, Peter's voice comes in, and the soothing sound of his voice pulls you into the lyrics, and immediately you go....aaaah....this will be a nice journey, this new album, `Tattoo`. Peter Daltrey and Damien Youth together, collaborating.
(Listen to the title track at www.myspace.com/peterdaltrey)
"Full Circle" comes up next, the drums kick a little kick, and you think just for a second that.......but there it is again, that acoustic guitar, and that voice singing about "waking up feeling that in the end, everything will be alright" and I believe it.....I believe it.
And the spell continues in "The Game", scissors and paper, fire and stone.......
Now the mood changes in "Dreaming Of Holly", a song about Buddy, done in a Dylanish type voice, wherein Peter continues his fascination with Americana, and oh boy, that'll be the day, rave on, Peter....
PD has proven to be very introspective on past albums, and "Gypsy Gypsy" continues in that vein "I search alone in vain beneath the saddened moon".
"Jesus Wheel" will require a few listens to understand, to understand........it takes you along on a nice groove with an acoustic guitar, with a shimmering electric on top of the acoustic bed...."break me on your Jesus wheel"...
"Queen of Thieves" has a little guitar filigree that puts me in the mind of the Beatles "Blackbird" for some reason. The song scares me a little, "one moment we are everywhere, one moment we are gone" ... this album sounds so good right now.....
"Big Gun"....I hate guns, I've made my feelings about them well known elsewhere... "I'm gonna climb that mountain - you will remember me" scares me as well.....
Peter finds a voice that we haven't heard since Kaleidoscope on "Winter Song". He sings it very differently than the other songs. The song resounds with loneliness and isolation "it's winter baby, I'm so afraid of the cold, I am ice, I am in pieces". Chills.....chills.
A Duane Eddyish guitar and more Americana set "The Three Sisters" apart, with it's different sound, and it's cinematic sweep. This song reminds me of something, and I can't quite place it.....it has a determined feel to it, and it's wonderful.
"Tokyo Room" starts with a very psychy sounding Faye Daltrey (?) speaking of "kaleidoscopic kimonos", and a guitar sounding like it has been filtered through a Lesley speaker gives this song an otherworldly feel....can't quite suss it out yet......
And I was lucky enough to get the CD that has the bonus cut "Nathan Child", which seems to me to be closer to the sound of Kaleidoscope than anything that Peter Daltrey has done on his various solo albums.....it's very good.......and then it ends. And you think, wow, this was what I wanted it to be. He has done what I consider his best solo effort yet, and I hope that he builds on this for future releases. If you haven't ordered it yet, please do so, you will be pleased, I think. Thanks to the creators of this little jewel on plastic.
Greg Weatherby, Redwood City USA
'Tattoo' really is an absolute belter - brilliant stuff. The partnership with Damien goes from strength to strength.
By the way, any suggestions on how to get 'Dreaming Of Holly' out of my head?! That could be a hit single, no question.
Andy Chrzanowski UK
Wow! Now I wanna buy the CD!!
PETER DALTREY & DAMIEN YOUTH 'Tattoo' Chelsea Records CRCD 201110 (CD) (43m24s) (UK) 2003
This is the second collaboration between Peter Daltrey and Damien Youth, and how their partnership is blossoming! The first CD, 'Nevergreen', being a concept album with plenty of spoken passages, demanded concentrated listening from beginning to end. 'Tattoo' is a collection of songs, and as such is more accessible. There is plenty of variety, light and shade, and some real developments in their writing. The acoustic guitar immediately brings to mind some of the softer Kaleidoscope tracks, notably on the title track, with its repeated, hypnotic guitar refrain. Peter's voice is perfectly suited to this kind of guitar backdrop. There are shades of Donovan here too; his 90s 'Sutras' album springing to mind. That's not to say this is a backward looking album; 'The Three Sisters' is possibly one of the rockiest tracks on any of Peter's CDs. Oliver Daltrey's additional guitar is most welcome, resulting in a powerful and sinister song. The worship of woman from a distance, a theme that has cropped up in Peter's lyrics from the very beginning, is here again - "While I kneel at your feet and kiss your hi-heels / you stab me with the silver knife". This is a cracking track. Oliver's guitar also appears on the mysterious, atmospheric and image laden 'Jesus Wheel', jangling in a very satisfying manner.
Mostly, of course, it's an acoustic album, full of delicious, delicate touches, fine lyrics and haunting melodies with real commercial appeal - 'Gypsy Gypsy' (ZAB: Note that this was released as a 7" single on Earworm Records.) has an instantly memorable chorus and a touch of atmospheric organ, while 'Dreaming of Holly', an affectionate tribute to Buddy Holly is pure pop magic. Even the tiniest touches, the soft backing vocals, the touch of echo, the lyric that hits all the right spots, combine to make this another of the CD's standout tracks. Someone really ought to get this out as a single! Elsewhere, 'Big Gun' has a suitably booming drum backing on an uncharacteristically bitter song of lost dreams and disillusion. "Do we trust them or do we string them up from the nearest tree?" Peter sings of the men who "want to tempt us with their sour dreams." 'Tokyo Room' features Faye Daltrey adding a vocal introduction and backing vocals to an eastern flavoured song, while 'Nathan Child' is composed by Peter and Oliver, and reminds me of some of the shorter Fairfield Parlour pieces that appeared on their 'Just Another Day' EP.
This CD shows Peter going from strength to strength as a lyricist and singer, while the collaboration with Damien Youth is producing some fine melodies and developing into a song writing partnership of such quality that they could probably find other outlets for their talents, as well as on this varied and enjoyable CD.
PETER DALTREY: 'The Last Detail'
(Chelsea Records CRCD 209010)(CD) 2002
With 'The Last Detail' the former Kaleidoscope singer Peter Daltrey has given us a truly great album. A very gritty and personal set of songs with poetic and intellectually challenging lyrics. And the lyrical content is portrayed exceedingly well by the melodies and musical arrangements. The album certainly contains enough jewels to earn a place among Daltrey`s finest releases ever.
1) 'Put Your Weight On Me', is a very compelling opening number with excellent interplay between organ and piano, and a dual-tracked lead vocal by Daltrey, who co-wrote the song with Eddy Pumer. The blend of country and gospel influences resembles the Australian band Black Sorrows` 1989 album 'Hold On To Me'. (8)
2) An arpeggio acoustic guitar intro opens the almost mesmerizing song 'Michael J. Delaney', an intriguing story about an artist who paints a self-portrait in a studio on the roof of the Hockhauser building, "where the light comes in like holy water". Don McLean`s classic song about ' Vincent' comes to mind, but even McLean couldn`t have said it more beautifully than this. (9?)
3) 'Coming Down From Boston' -- again a gentle acoustic guitar opening, Then strings, piano and flute, before erupting into a thunderous pop number. Daltrey reflects on how priorities in life seem to change as we grow older, and how ideals from when we were young are buried on the way: "whatever happened to the revolution, we were gonna change the world". (7)
4) The lyrics of 'Tompkins Park' obviously take us to Jack Kerouac and Alan Ginsberg territory, and a walk with the two beat poets in Tompkins Square Park, New York City. A philosphical and surreal trip back to 1959, with Daltrey creating a musical landscape well suited to the somewhat cryptic message of the song. (9)
5) 'Stones In My Shoes' is rather moody, the verses almost Leonard Cohen-ish, but the song is saved by an upbeat chorus: "But it`s all right now, but it`s all right now, `cause I no longer care" (6)
6) 'Over The Hill' is an upbeat number in the traditional country-folk vein, a bit like The Spinners or Tim Hart kind of thing. (7)
7) The heavy 'Doctor Collis Brown' really rocks, and Daltrey sounds oddly like Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music on this number. (6)
8) 'Circles Of Rain' is another pleasant folk ballad with acoustic guitars and flutes. Simply an uncomplicated acoustic pop. Good guitar work. (7)
9) 'Red Pony' has a lyric with religious undertones. It`s actually a straight forward blues number with a piano giving it a gospel feeling. (7?)
10) One of the best songs on the album is undoubtedly 'Jackie`s All-Nite Bar', almost a full-length movie compressed down to three and a half minutes! A French harmonium sound creates the mood, with Daltrey just Doing his thing as singing storyteller to great effect. The arrangement is a bit like Phillip Goodhand-Tait`s little known 'One More Rodeo' from 1973, while Elton John also did a similar, very cinematic song with 'Ticking' on his 'Caribou' album from 1974. (9)
11) 'This Time Tomorrow' is a ballad with a lyric about a man and a woman splitting up. (5)
12) Then a song obviously dedicated to his son Oliver, who plays guitar and is the co-writer of one song with his father. 'Go On Your Way' is a dead-ringer for Peter Sarstedt`s 1969 hit 'Where Do You Go To My Lovely'. (8)
13) 'The Light Of The World' -- another ballad with sparse instrumentation and a fragile lead vocal reflecting the mood of the lyric. The song grows on You after a few plays. (6)
14) The final song, 'When We Return From War', is a real masterpiece from Daltrey - worthy a grand finale of a rock musical like 'Chess' or something! A thunderous drum intro followed by a slow, march-tempo melody. A soldier`s lament with an arrangement reminiscent of early 1970`s Moody Blues albums like 'Every Good Boy Deserves Favour' and 'Seventh Sojourn'. An excellent production, and this is undoubtedly the diamond of Daltrey`s 'Last Detail' collection. The song fades out with church bells tolling and Dalt rey`s voice repeating: "this is the beginning, this is the beginning, this is the beginning". (10)
I agree, Peter, let`s play it again from the beginning! This CD is highly recommended! Oh, one more thing - the CD-insert contains the lyrics of all songs, and the Salvador Dali cover illustration is one that even Hipgnosis would have been proud of!
LINK BEKKA 'Pittsburgh Warhola'
Chelsea Records CRCD 300110 (CD) (51m36s) (UK) 2003
Available from the same address as 'Tattoo', but this is a strange one. Essentially, it's more of a set of poems / lyrics spoken against an electronic background. Some of it is instrumental, but really it's the words that grab the attention. Musically the influences include latter-day Tangerine Dream (there might even be some samples of their work included). Lyrically the theme is a kind of examination of the dark underbelly of American life, perhaps the sort of album David Lynch might make if he were so inclined. "Where people meet to exchange paradise in a plastic bag", as one line puts it. The whole thing is perhaps more unsettling than the above suggests, for the voice is strangely distorted, in line with the skewed American vision conjured up by the whole album. Images of deserted gas stations, broken call boxes and open space come to mind. The lyrics on the insert have every S and N inverted, so reading the words becomes as disturbing as listening to the voice, intoned rather like a futuristic android on drugs.
The U.S. anthem sets the theme. The words of the opening track "Every cloud has a poisoned lining. Gimme gimme gimme Benzadrine", sets the scene for much of what follows. Like some dark film noir, 'Television' sounds like a voice over from a forgotten Bogart movie, set against doomy instruments and occasional riffing. Jazzy piano and tom toms follow the dark, creepily intoned story. 'Space' has samples from Apollo 8. "This is a journey into sound", says one of the samples, introducing 'Cocaine', which turns out to be rather sparse, with rumbling bass, jazzy brass. Perhaps the most effective track is 'Vietnam', with its chilling cry of "You should be proud of nuclear war!" opening into some fine poetry. "Give me one thousand silver bullets / Give me a rifle forged in your spinning heaven", and many other fine lines. Some surprisingly gentle acoustic guitar follows this - just when you expect something heavy - before settling into an almost orthodox rock groove. The other stand out track is 'Chappaquiddik', which manages to string together a century of American icons in just a few lines, and very cleverly too: "Holly flew to Paradise - Elvis popped a pill. Valentino danced on a flowery grave - While Zelda led Fitzgerald over the hill." Mention of Fitzgerald gives a clue to who Link Bekka is, and why he has twisted and distorted his voice beyond recognition. For it is, as you might have guessed given the Chelsea Records logo, Peter Daltrey, whose talents never cease to amaze me. Come to think of it, Kaleidoscope were always changing their name, and were not above recording under a pseudonym (remember I Luv Wight?) but their music remained essentially the same. Here, clearly, 'Pittsburg Warhola' is light years away from Peter's usual style; it does provide an often chilling and creepy listen. For Peter Daltrey fans, of course, it's essential, if only for a glimpse of his darker side. DARE YOU LISTEN? / Steve Douglas
(Listen to `Lizards` at www.myspace.com/linkbekka)
(ZABADAK:This is a breathtaking & energetic ambient trip through the darker side of mankind, with the spotlight on the recent legends & lifestyle of the USA. We have no hesitation in recommending 'Pittsburg Warhola' as it is quite brilliant. As Steve says the talents of Peter Daltrey never cease to amaze, and here at the fab Zab we always admire musicians/artists willing to take risks, to experiment & to do something completely different.)
A selection of reviews from Japanese publications:
`English Roses` is slendid! All songs are pop/folk/rock oriented with a soft and mellow sound. They remind us of the sweetest part of both bands. Warm and colourful sounds from various keyboards make the innocent songs also enjoyable for prog fans.
The sound is mild and pleasant pop and dreamy atmosphere like late Sixties. I can see his great no commercial pop style in his sound.
This album so beautiful and lovely cover and liner. The gentle folk rock is not introverted, is going toward the music. Is great.
Gently keyboard sound and deep tender voice will impress you. High quality booklet.
Peter`s sound is contemporary pop and gentle atmosphere from his annual rings. Fairfield Parlour`s strong British shade is here now. Not traditional songs are from his psych-pop experience. I like `The Unicorn` very much.
I got hooked slowly every time I listened this CD. Like a drug. Strange British folk album. Peter`s voice is pure and dreamy so pleasantly. One of sweet British lyricism. I`m sure British folk fans like this. I seem this is 70`s British folk sound with little psyche like Nick Drake.
The secret treasure of UK folk.
Nobly songs and sincerily voice, British shade and atmosphere, this is real British rock.
The beauty of British dark sounds and poetic lyrics are beyond compare.
Quiet keybords sound and kind deep voice move your heart.
Not strong serious like pure trad, naturally I was vailed in gentle atmosphere. It is very noble.
Sound is hamid and dark. Booklet is graceful and with detail of discography.
I had became to Peter`s fan recently. Beautiful sound refreshes my tired heart. Similar to Brian Wilson.
Chelsea Records are proud to announce the release of the new album by Peter Daltrey and Damien Youth! The remarkable collaboration continues with `The Morning Set`, a collection of ten brand new songs. Combining the brilliance of Damien`s mercurial guitar compositions with Peter`s classic English vocals and inspired lyrics, `The Morning Set` is an essential addition to the Kaleidoscope/Fairfield Parlour/Peter Daltrey fan`s collection.
A new Peter Daltrey album is always an exciting event in itself: the expectation of it being another alliance with Louisiana's finest, Damien Youth, whets the appetite further still.
Although this is Daltrey's eleventh solo outing, it's his third with the American folk-psych songsmith - ably assisted by Joe Pesci, Dave 'Fingers' Carver and Peter's son Oli -- and this time under the flag of The Morning Set. Arguably, it's the strongest, conventional Daltrey/Youth set to date; conventional only in the sense that their best work until now, the largely-acoustic "Nevergreen", was more of a thematic piece best enjoyed as a whole. "The Morning Set" contains ten songs of a startlingly-accessible nature. The phrase 'radio-friendly' springs to mind, but don't let that fool you. As immediate as these songs are, they improve with repeated playing, revealing a greater depth thanks to the dependable union of Peter Daltrey's lyrical- and Damien Youth's melodic-mastery. In Youth, Daltrey has found the ideal creative foil. Much like his Kaleidoscope/Fairfield Parlour compadre Eddy Pumer, both share the same happy knack of pulling that killer hook out of the bag when required. As the promotional strap line has it: "Yer going to be singing these songs forever!"
Daltrey's favoured themes of nostalgia and Americana are very much in evidence again and are given an even greater authenticity thanks to Youth's input. The opener, "Waking up in Ellerslie", all twelve-string guitars, wailing harp and sweet folk-rock optimism, is further enhanced by the presence of another of the Daltrey progeny, daughter Faye, on backing vocal.
The filmic "The Hymn of the Singing Man", with its Zimmerman drawl and brooding Link Wray guitar trills, could almost be a sonic sibling of Dylan's "Ballad of a Thin Man" reworked for the Tarantino generation. However, for every darker moment, we're treated to breezier bursts of tune smithery, such as "Wheels of Romance", which bears all the deftness of touch that was Fairfield Parlour's trademark.
(Listen to this track at www.myspace.com/themorningset)
Has Peter Daltrey's voice ever sounder better than on "Sleeping with Sylvia Plath"? Maybe not. All the emotion, experience and quiet assuredness of a man now in his fifth decade of this recording lark coalesces in almost seven-minutes of claustrophobic urgency; Oli Daltrey's snaking lead guitar adding to the dark vision.
Damien Youth assumes lead vocal duties on two songs: "Phantom Wheels" and "Joe, don't listen to The Man", the latter being one of the album's many highlights, with Youth's Beck-like intonation (that's Hansen and not Jeff, God forbid.) "Blue Girl Eyes" ranks up there too and features some wonderful, chiming guitar work, redolent of Peter Buck in a pre-Warners R.E.M.
"The Ballad of Pilgrim State" is an account of Allen Ginsberg's grim, early family life. Its compelling, but chilling intensity is countered by the positively joyful "Breakfast with Sinatra", which brings the album to a close on a cheerier note
Consistently and satisfyingly impressive, and one can't help but look forward already to the next offering by The Morning Set; a prospect even more mouthwatering than the picture of a lovely, greasy fry-up on this album's CD label. Although I hear he could make a mean Eggplant Parmigiana, I'll bet old Frank wouldn't have turned his nose up if he were offered a fried slice to go with it....
Fellow Kaleidoscope fans!
This album is a must! I consider it the best since White faced lady, which says a lot. Peter in a full group setting is what I have hoped for.
Link Bekka and Derek Head have produced an amazing album inspired by the work of lonely American genius, Jack Kerouac.
It is always difficult to translate the essence of a book whether in words as in a review, or a synopsis or a screenplay for stage or film. How much more difficult to use music to communicate such a work.
The first track, TIMES SQUARE opens with a cacophony of voices resembling the noise of a busy metropolis. A slow underlying beat picks up the pace, and various elements come together, transposing the variety, speed and life of a city into a comprehensive and varied composition.
The trajectory of G J APOSTLOS moves into an altogether more mellifluous, easy on the ear composition, the saxophone dominating with practised ease. This is the sort of tune you return to time and time again; the structure is considered and exciting at the same time.
THE VILLAGE begins with a state of tranquillity and the saxophone suddenly swoops, transcending the composure of the introduction with the voice overtones underlying the beat. There is a marked seventies feel to this track but it has used resonance from this era musically, while still managing to be innovative and divergent.
LOWELL begins with the voice reciting "When I look upon the face of God", unsettling, terrifying in some ways and diffusing a miasma of despair. This is followed by angelic sounds, bringing a religious fervour to mind, displacing yet reinforcing the words that went before. It is barren and stark, everything pared down to a minimalist excoriation of extraneous sounds and feelings. This track takes no prisoners.
CAFE BLAH begins with voices and sounds of crockery being moved. It meticulously mirrors the café scene but other elements are added, insistent and provoking until the saxophone is introduced in a mesmerising melody, the singing in the background beautifully complementing the music.
CITY LIGHTS starts with the now familiar voice and we find ourselves drawn into a catchy number with singing that has a propensity to remind one of jazzy low lit clubs, cigarettes, sultry women and shady men. Atmospherically, this is unbeatable.
MEMERE is euphonious and soothing. The saxophone is so smooth, bringing quietude and pathos to such an extent, one could cry just listening to it. The sophistry that has gone into this track is magical. One is transported to another time, another place, merely by listening to it.
JACKS TOWN starts slowly, with more recitation, the music a perfect counterpart to the speech. We see and feel Jack's town through both the words and the music. The stream of consciousness is followed faithfully by the piano which never fails to engage with the words.
RUMBLE ON SKID ROW has an insistent rhythm. I defy anyone to resist dancing or swaying to this mercurial beat. An addictive track, one can only listen fascinated by what is coming next, always unexpected, it also always delivers. Again, there is a break in the music while we ingest the words, before you know it, the tune has overtaken you again. Powerful.
LUPINE is just seriously beautiful. The skill of the sax player is shown at its best, giving the composition a lustre, a gentle persuasiveness that goes beyond the mere appealing. Serene, unruffled, it is a lake without ripples, a leaf-filled tree without the hint of wind, a sun setting in a darkening sky.
DOCTOR SAX ON MOODY STREET in contrast to the former track, ensnares us, the music giving an oddly decaying and tragic sound. It is chilling, both the words and the sounds that seem to come from all directions. The sense of the journey, of a world going wrong is amply reflected in the deliberately disquieting tune.
GOD SPEAKS brings the whole album together ending on a scriptural note, in line with Jack`s own words. It is a prayer, a requiem, a looking back and a paean to the human condition. Very cleverly the music is simple, unobtrusive, fading away, leaving the listener spellbound – wanting more...
As you can probably guess, I LOVE the album. This is a seriously amazing piece of work and it should be out there in the public domain.
Phyl Wright / February 2009
Copyright © 2008 Chelsea Records.Co.Uk
All rights reserved all terratories all text and images.