on 11 November 2001
This will be as much of a surprise to you as it was to me...I bought this album on the strength of one standout single: the band's cover version of the Four Seasons' classic Beggin'. This outstanding track, with its heady marriage of converging strings and brass, with a powerhouse rhythm section, underpinned by the haunting tones of the vibraphone, is for sure to be savoured, but should not overshadow the fine work on the rest of the album. From the oft-quoted 'Baked Jam Roll in Your Eye' to the standout title track, 'Timebox', the record takes you on a rollercoaster ride down 'the dark neglected catacombs of your mind.' Its sheer diversity means it is a sure-fire winner with soul, jazz and even psychedelia fans. I'm not quite sure how merriment ensued without this record, but for sure it is proceeding apace now. The must buy album of the rest of your life.
on 25 February 2005
Ollie Halsall's career charted a diverse and bizarre course both before and during his long association with Kevin Ayers. His first claim to fame was with the 60's pop group called Timebox (later - less keyboard wizard 'Professor' Chris Holmes - to become the notorious Patto).
It is a little known footnote to the Ayers chronology that, sometime after the death of their namesake Mike Patto, the rest of the group (Halsall, drummer John Halsey and bassist Clive Griffiths) - toured Europe as Kevin's backing band - someone, please find a tape of this! In 1968 Timebox recorded tracks for an album to be called 'Moose on the Loose'.
Now, nearly 20 years on these are scheduled for release by Polygram under the title 'Play the Perfect Fool'. In an ideal world this album would contain simply those original Patto/Halsall compositions from the 1968 sessions (plus a few odd pieces) unearthed by the sterling efforts of Richard Lane (to whom we remain eternally indebted for the 'Sense of the Absurd' Patto reissues a couple of years back).
Commercial pressures, however, seem set to force the inclusion of all the dreadful singles and b-sides - The exquisite irony here being that, even after all this time, you cannot escape the market led pressures of corporate publishers!
Never mind. When you buy the CD, simply program the tracks indicated here only and you will have the Great Lost Album of the 60's . . .
You've Got the Chance
Country Dan (and City Lil!)
Leave Me to Cry
Love the Girl
Poor Little Heartbreaker
Baked jam Roll in Your Eye
Gone is the Sad Man
Barry Monks, 1997
The Ollie Halsall Archive
on 29 May 2003
You may not have heard much about this group but Sir Jimmy Young Radios 1&2 will remember as he used to play their album all the time.Their most memorable track was "Baked Jam Roll In Your Eye" Once heard you will be Hooked and you'll buy this album just for this track, but, beware! most sellers are £14 plus so buy from this website for a cheaper deal. Happy listening. Be happy.