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Customer Review

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully Wierd POSSIBLY an ACQUIRED TASTE but 1960s gone MAD, 28 Mar. 2011
This review is from: Strangelands (Audio CD)
This is the original second album produced in late 1969 by the Crazy World of AB after their disastrous American tour with its original Crazy World lineup.

The fact that it never saw release for over 17yrs still makes it part of the original Crazy World set up, because it still precedes Arthur's Kingdom Come albums, and due to the great similarities in sound its often mistaken by many as a Kingdom Come release.

Kit Lambert the manager of Pete Townsend and The Who and boss of Track records, was the only record label interested in the Crazy World.

During Arthur's first American tour with his original lineup, Lambert withheld much needed finance during the tour, resulting in Arthur and the band falling out and going their separate ways.

A particularly gifted guitar genius named Jimmy Hendricks with an equally strange group titled "Band of Gypsies" approached an almost

destitute Arthur and asked him if he would like to join his Gypsy set up.
It was a dream chance for any musician but Arthur was still tied into a very rigid contract with Track Records so couldnot persue his dream.

In late 1969-70 on his return from America, Arthur formed his new band Kingdom Come, and an owner friend of a very large farmhouse named Illington Farm in Puddletown Dorset, allowed him and his friends to crash out there and produce some music or whatever materialised.

Arthur and the rest of his band named the so called recording studio made in a downstairs room, Jabawocky studios and produced some very strange sounds.

The local Dorset people accepted these wild looking creatures who were making such a racket on the lawn outside the farmhouse, and Arthur and co even worked up a slate in the local shop according to the interesting litrature that comes with this cd.

All this was happening in very late 1969 and the spring of 1970, a few months before Kingdom Comes first album was recorded and released, but because its recording was not taken seriously by Kit Lambert and Track Records it was not released until late 1988, but it is still called the Crazy World's second album.

Due to its very tight recording deadline between the disbanding of the original Crazy World line up and formation of Kingdom Come in early 1970, its influence on Gallactic Zoo Dossier is unmistakeable, with much of the Strangelands melody and rhythm sounding very much like Kingdom Comes earlier work.

During their time at Puddletown in Dorset, some of the band members quarrelled with Arthur, and decided to do their own thing.

Rustic Hinge which comprised the entire Crazy World lineup except Arthur also produced their equally strange "Tea on the Lawn for 3" also known as the "Replicas" album and was also recorded on the front lawn at Jaberwocky studios.

Due to some disagreement the band decided to make their own spontaneous recordings on the lawn of Illington Farm and where Arthur was is a mystery, but both albums Strangelands and Tea on the Lawn for 3 were released at exactly the same time in 1988 under the Wreckless recordings label.

The bands recording strangely ended up on a BBC programme on Thomas Hardy when a film crew thought it would be interesting to include the band in the opening sequence but it never reached the tv having been edited before transmission.

Thankfully this rare recording of Rustic Hinge playing on the Puddletown lawn can be seen on YouTube and its not surprising it was not featured on the straight laced BBC. Unusual to say the least.

Both albums are remarkably similar but Strangelands was recorded on the spur of the moment with some possibly insane dialogue and music and members of the group must have been encouraged to say whatever came into their minds.

There is a kind of sequence to the album but only just.

Those who purchase this Strangelands cd will almost know what to expect, but when i bought the original cd and Lp way back in 1988 even i was shocked and delighted in what i heared.

Strangelands is without doubt one of the strangest albums i have ever heard, and unless you are a serious Arthur Brown fan you may regret purchasing it ,because the majority of the album was recorded without due care and thought of what the band was going to play or do.

One asks the question why did Kit Lambert refuse to produce or release the Crazy Jabawocky studio recording, on listening to this cd you can probably understand why, for even the drug induced late 60s was not prepared for this kind of mayhem.

Only one other Arthur cd is rarer than the original first pressing 1988 Strangelands recordings, and that is his Legboot Live cd which were sold only at his various concerts for a very limited period in very small numbers.

After three years in trying i did manage to obtain a copy, and it proved even more difficult to obtain than his first ever recording way back in 1965 when he released a flexidisc at the Reading festival with the group "The Diamonds".

The original first pressing 1988 Strangelands Lp is a rare album and the only saving grace is the inclusion of Rustic Hinges "Replicas" recording on the same album, why this happened is strange considering the Rustic Hinge recordings were released also as a separate Lp aswell .

This is an Arthur cd for the collector and is certainly not a reflection on Arthur's later work with Kingdom Come.

If you want to listen to Arthurs best recording buy his "Journey" cd during the Kingdom Come era, its without doubt one of the finest experimental underground albums of the early 70s and possibly the very first album ever produced to feature an electrical drum machine.

You are buying this Strangelands cd because you are a huge Arthur Brown fan and want to discover want came just before his Kingdom Come albums.

You will be surprised and shocked but its worth the purchase just to experience what real experimentalist music was all about, its very similar to early Captain Beefheart but far more unusual.

Only a brave artist would release such a work today because its listening audience would be very small indeed.

On listening to Strangelands it could only have been produced in the crazy 60ies era where experimentalism was the norm and if produced today would prabably sell even fewer albums than it did in 1988.
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Initial post: 19 Nov 2011 20:09:12 GMT
[Deleted by Amazon on 21 May 2012 09:47:20 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Dec 2011 16:28:13 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Dec 2011 16:28:27 GMT
That's what i said.
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Location: Llandudno N Wales

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,112