Welcome to my new blog. I'm ripping off TageRyche's Cassette Chronicles, but at least I'm crediting him. This will be a recurring blog covering my bargain vinyl purchases only, no CD's or other types of media. I'll listen to a few of the albums and report here what I got and how much I paid.
Savoy Brown - Hellbound Train (1972 - Parrot)
Cost - $1.00
Savoy Brown was a British Blues Rock band, and Hellbound Train is the band's eighth studio album. It's pretty much a straight up blues rock album, with a touch of soul maybe? It's nothing spectacular, but Lost And Lonely Child, Troubled By These Days and Times and It'll Make You Happy are decent songs. Hellbound Train is worth the price of admission. It has an extremely abrupt ending, almost to the point of being scary. I stumbled onto it on Youtube a while back and it's the reason I picked the album up.
The next to last song is scratched several times near the end of the track, but those are the only scratches on the entire album, the rest of it plays well. There is a lot of his and pop throughout. The cover is in fair condition and is a gatefold, but it does have Kim Simmonds' (the founder and guitarist) autograph on it. I have no idea if it's legitimate.
Crawler - Crawler (1977 - Epic)
Cost - $1.00
This one was purchased strictly for it's cover. I had no idea what it was musically. There was nothing songwise of note other than the album closer (Stone Cold Sober), though the guitar playing was very decent, performed by Geoff Whitehorn. The production is not good, as it sounds somewhat like the band is playing in a large steel drum. The singer (Terry Wilson Slesser) is average at best, occasionally sounding like Tom Johnston from the Doobies. I'm not at all surprised that this band never stepped out of obscurity.
The band's backstory is pretty cool. Apparently, Paul Kossoff's first solo album after Free disbanded was titled Back Street Crawler. Kossoff supposedly was a founding member of the band by the same name, but he died shortly thereafter. The remaining band members moved on to another label and management and tried to recruit Mick Taylor, then Peter Green for the guitar slot to replace Kossoff, but they both declined. They settled on Geoff Whitehorn and due to his obscurity, they were dropped from their label. They were picked up by Epic/CBS and recorded two studio albums for their place in music history.
The album did produce a minor hit in the United States. Stone Cold Sober managed a number 65 showing on the Billboard Hot 100. The record itself is in good shape, with only one scratch on the lead off track. The cover is in fair shape, no tears or cut out but it does have a some wear around the edges.
The Baker Gurvitz Army - The Baker Gurvitz Army (1974 - Janus Records)
Cost - $1.00
Here's another one that I picked up on the strength of the cover. Of course, then I flipped it over and saw the name Ginger Baker and decided I'd definitely pick it up. The cover again is in fair shape with no tears or cutout, but it does show years of wear around the edges. The record itself shows a good bit of wear and some scratching, but surprisingly it plays very well.
The Baker Gurvitz Army features the aforementioned Ginger Baker on drums and vocals, Adrian Gurvitz on guitar and vocals and his brother Paul Gurvitz on bass and vocals. The vocals all the way around are average at best, but I can't tell you who sings what. Adrian Gurvitz is a very good guitarist. I was in the record store yesterday and mentioned this album to the owner, who whipped out a thirty dollar copy of the debut from the band The Gun (a previous band that both Gurvitz brothers played in) and put it on the record player. I was quite impressed. Not thirty dollar impressed, but impressed none the less.
Overall, the album isn't remarkable, but it does have some moments. One of those moments is an excessive, drawn out drum solo by Baker that occurs in the middle of Memory Lane. It is not necessary. I didn't say they were all good moments. Also, though this guitar playing is very good, it isn't out front like The Gun album I heard. I'm guessing this was a Ginger Baker show. But it does touch on heaviness/metal and a pinch of prog (time changes and instrumentals) here and there.