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Swedish Radio Sessions


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Product details

  • Audio CD (29 Oct 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Castle
  • ASIN: B00005QTC1
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 394,677 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

BBC Review

The name of Keith Emerson has forever been sullied by the activities of behemoth classical-rock monsters ELP, but as with so many artists of his generation, if you scratch the surface and do a little delving, you come across a very different beast indeed. No one who buys this album will be unaware of Mr Moog-mauler's pedigree, but for those unschooled in prog history it may come as some surprise to hear that this, his sophomore outfit, started as a support band for sixties soul diva PP Arnold. While performing warm-up sets prior to her arrival onstage, the band discovered a talent for stage craft and theatre which, when married to Emerson's Jimmy Smith licks and Davy O'List's psychedelic guitar strangling, resulted in a sound that was very much flavour du jour in early 1967.

This slice of pop archaeology comes at us from the mists of time when the band were just starting to road test the songs from their first album, the ingeniously titled The Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack. The title track and their freaked-out mangling of Dave Brubeck's "Rondo" (12 minutes plus!) are present and correct as is "Flower King Of Flies", the psychedelic stomper which demonstrates that The Nice could easily match contemporaries such as the Pink Floyd and Soft Machine for lysergic weirdness. Completists will love the inclusion of three non-originals including the almost mandatory (for the time) Dylan number and a lumpen version of "You Keep Me Hanging On" which may even pre-date Vanilla Fudge's useless rendition.

The version of "Sombrero Sam", however, really allows Emerson's funky keyboard chops to come to the fore. He truly was a precocious master of the Hammond and in a light jazz setting such nimble-fingered wizardry shines out. Overall you sense a band stretching each other to the limit, reaching out to invent a new format which would eventually become their downfall. At this point, however, the quartet was wandering in a perfumed garden of psychedelic modishness, and all the better for it. Caught forever in Swedish broadcast quality aspic, this is a slice of history worth repeating. --Chris Jones

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 17 Feb 2002
Format: Audio CD
If you aren't familiar with The Nice, start elsewhere...like with the 3 CD box set. However, if you're like me and you have everything, this is great. There are a couple of songs that have never been on ANY Nice CD (one okay, one not that good), plus first-time-ever live versions of The Thoughts of Emerlist Davjack and Flower King of Flies. You've heard She Belongs To Me live, but never as tight as this. And, Rondo...ahhh, you might have a few versions of this, but never one as intense as this live excursion with Davy O'List at the fretboard. Keith Emerson gets all the attention, but O'List really made The Nice for me, and his sonic insanity is definitely up-front on this recording, which was made after their first album was recorded, but before it was released. For what it is, the sound is great, but it's certainly not up to 21st century standards.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 20 Nov 2001
Format: Audio CD
It is a very strange document of their very early performance in 1967. It seems they had no recording experience and the tracks that may be familiar to you sound different then album covers.
The quality is great and all ELP and NICE fans must get it. There is a feeling of jazz influence of performance and they play realy live.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Glenn Cook HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 18 May 2013
Format: Audio CD
Further to the reviews here I thought the actual track listing would be of interest.
Amazon have not, at the time of writing, published this list.

Track Listing
1. She Belongs to Me - (previously unreleased)
2. Flower King of Flies - (previously unreleased)
3. Sombrero Sam - (previously unreleased)
4. You Keep Me Hangin' On - (previously unreleased)
5. Thoughts of Emerlist Davjack, The - (previously unreleased)
6. Rondo - (previously unreleased)

Enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amon D on 25 Mar 2011
Format: Audio CD
I do not have the journalistic prowess to compete with the excellent product review by Chris Jones.

However, as a 'NICE' cpmpletist I obviously had to get this and am compelled to add my view on this excellent album. There are a couple of relatively low points, but what band 'finding their feet' don't have those. The high points are Sombrero Sam and Rondo. There are numerous versions of Rondo, not many better than the original studio recording on The Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack'. It is though the live concert, or in this case live studio versions that show the power and glory of the band. Davy O'List's manic guitar work competes strongly with Keith Emerson's Hammond Organ. It is almost a case of whatever you can do, I can do better. The furious guitar adds a different dimension to this track - most versions on vinyl/cd are after Davy left the band, with Keith more or less getting his own way throughout. This is different, they push themselves to higher levels - tremendous.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Fantastic find 20 Sep 2002
By kireviewer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
One of the Nice's two best albums. This is a radio show done just before Nice's first album was released. The group is the full quartet of Keith Emerson, David O'List, Lee Jackson and Brian Davison. The album is 41 minutes long and the sound quality is very good. There are extensive liner notes.
The group is more into jazz and rock at this time and hasn't yet gone off into art rock. The music is very lively and very edgy.
In the earlier versions of the Nice, David O'List is the real leader. There are great, searing guitar solos. There is fantastic interplay between guitar and organ.
The best thing on the album is the Charles Lloyd composition, Sombrero Sam. The version of Rondo here is the best on record. It has a very hard edge. I also like You Keep Me Hanging On, although the liner notes complain that it sounds too much like the Vanilla Fudge. The only "bad" track would be Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack, which features horrendous singing from each of the members of the group.
The only Nice album I like better than this one is Elegy. The piano solo on Hang On To A Dream is the best thing Keith Emerson has ever done.
Like the girl on the back of the CD says, "Listen to the Nice".
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The Nice - 'Swedish Radio Sessions' (Castle) 7 Dec 2006
By Mike Reed - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Six previously unreleased 'versions' of tunes from The Nice's repertoire. Liked every track here, rather it be their covers, Bob Dylan's "She Belongs To Me" or the Supremes hit "You Keep Me Hanging On", as well as "Flower King Of Flies" and the outstanding performance of the twelve - minute progressive gem "Rondo". Sound quality is very good, so is the price. Be you a new fan, a completist or just someone who has nothing to do BUT seek out such 'keeper' compilations to add to your already extensive collection, 'Swedish Radio Sessions' is a should-have.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Fine early concert from the four-piece lineup 11 Feb 2003
By Michael Topper - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The early four-piece lineup of The Nice with guitarist Davy O'List is likely to appeal more to fans of psychedlia than progressive rock, although like the group's first album "The Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack" there are definite signs in this early concert of the group's preferences for jazz and classical music. The sound quality is surprisingly exceptional, which is a big bonus toward recommending it since few taped concerts from this era sound this clear.
The opening track "She Belongs To Me", which appeared in another live version on the group's third album, is strikingly different with the addition of O'List's guitar work, which evokes Hendrix but also adds his own brittle, eccentric additions. That O'List dominates the soloing here and on several other tracks on the CD shows that at this beginning stage of group's career, Emerson had not yet come to dominate. This was also pretty heavy, hard rocking stuff for October '67. "The Flower King Of Flies" and "The Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack" are pretty similar to their studio renditions (minus the studio effects), but once again with even more prominent guitar. "Sombrero Sam" is an excellent long psych jam which features marvellous jazz-tinged soloing from both O'List and Emerson, and should've been on one of their albums; it is the best find on this release. "You Keep Me Hanging On" sounds, like the liner notes say, a bit sloppy and
unrehearsed although once again O'List provides some interesting
guitar fills here and there. The set closes with the earliest
recorded version of "Rondo", clocking in at twelve solid minutes and along with "Sombrero Sam" gives Emerson a chance to shine; it must've been obvious back in '67 that this was the most dazzling organist anyone had ever heard, and it now seems inevitable that O'List would depart within a year. At this time, however, he appeared confident in his abilities and thus
makes this a fascinating listen for anyone interested in hearing him during his peak influence in the band. As Emerson--as relatively limited as his contribution is--does not disappoint either, and the sound quality is pristine, I would recommend this to any fan of the group, but especially those drawn to the first album.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Incredible Audio for Old Record. 8 Jun 2003
By David Elias Nader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is a really one of the best old cd's I have purchased,I mean,about audio quality,due the conditions of Swedish Studio was poor is those time,maybe 1966.The Nice is a dinosaur band but they revealed Keith Emerson and his true talent to Rock History and they also is a relevant part of it.BUY THIS CD BEFORE IT BECOME OUT OF STOCK!!!!IT'S A RARITY,INDEED!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Fantasic Find 20 Sep 2002
By kireviewer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
One of the Nice's two best albums. This is a radio show done just before Nice's first album was released. The group is the full quartet of Keith Emerson, David O'List, Lee Jackson and Brian Davison. The album is 41 minutes long and the sound quality is very good. There are extensive liner notes.
The group is more into jazz and rock at this time and hasn't yet gone off into art rock. The music is very lively and very edgy.
In the earlier versions of the Nice, David O'List is the real leader. There are great, searing guitar solos. There is fantastic interplay between guitar and organ.
The best thing on the album is the Charles Lloyd composition, Sombrero Sam. The version of Rondo here is the best on record. It has a very hard edge. I also like You Keep Me Hanging On, although the liner notes complain that it sounds too much like the Vanilla Fudge. The only "bad" track would be Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack, which features horrendous singing from each of the members of the group.
The only Nice album I like better than this one is Elegy. The piano solo on Hang On To A Dream is the best thing Keith Emerson has ever done.
Like the girl on the back of the CD says, "Listen to the Nice".
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