Fruits de Mer Records - Psychedelia, Krautrock, Progressive Rock, Acid-Folk, R&B, Spacerock and Vinyl Heaven

Other people's blogs are invariably as boring as hell - they're self-centred, random, rambling or just plain pointless...

we don't like to break the pattern, so this is the Fruits de Mer Records blog
...and you're welcome to it

I DON'T BELIEVE IT...

In Janaury, Sainsbury's were stocking an N.W.A. LP and I commented that there only one album they could possibly follow it with... and they have! Two copies of 'Never Mind The Bollocks' are proudly displayed in the local shop today, just at the end of the fresh veg aisle.


INTERESTING CONCEPT

On holiday in the USA, we saw a note-for-note live version of Led Zeppelin IV, performed by a group of eight musicians. It could have been a rather cold and sterile experience, but they played it very, very well, without trying to ape the original band (well, maybe the drummer a bit!). Other than side one of Led Zep IV being quite possibly my favourite side of a rock LP ever, two things stuck in my mind:
- the local audience seemed to have picked up the X-Factor bug by screaming every time a singer shouted loudly or the drummer hit a drum particularly hard...being an evening of Led Zeppelin music, this happened quite a lot.
- I had assumed this was a band that had worked long and hard to be note-perfect on one album and intended to tour it for ever, so I was a bit thrown when the lead singer ended the first set by saying, "don't forget, we'll be back here playing 'Dark Side Of The Moon' next month".
Bloody hell!

RSD 2019

Of course I'm going to moan about it...the older I get, the more cynical I become...but I really think it's a list that's especially hard to love this year; a Todd Rundgren box-set, a couple of psych compilations, and a late-arrival Stones 10" that I need to check out further, but I'm really struggling to get excited.
And the price of bog-standard reissues on coloured vinyl - good grief, I'd better re-think FdM prices!


SAINSBURYS STRIKE AGAIN

The local store is now stocking a N.W.A. album; surely it'll be 'Never Mind The Bollocks' next?

LESS HASTE, LESS SPEED

Really good of Gideon Coe to play tracks from both the Elfin Bow and Touch singles on his BBC 6Music show last night, so it would be churlish of me to mention that 'Who Knows Where The Time Goes' was played at a slightly disturbing, Nico-esque 33rpm instead of 45rpm.
But then again, 'Churlish' is my middle name (sometimes replaced by grumpy/miserable/elderly).
Fingers crossed for a slightly slower re-run in a week or so.

VDGG REISSUE

Esoteric have announced a'50th Anniversary' boxed set of VDGG's debut album 'Aerosol Grey Machine'; it includes the re-mastered album on CD, an additional CD of rare & previously unreleased tracks, demos & BBC sessions, a 180g vinyl LP of 'The Aerosol Grey Machine' in the unreleased British gatefold sleeve design, a 7-inch single of ‘People You Were Going To’ b/w ‘Firebrand’, a book and a replica 1968 poster designed by Peter Hammill.
It all sounds rather interesting - the kind of thing RSD could be about; I was waiting for the price to be the kick-in-the-teeth - but I have to say £45 isn't outrageous; shame they couldn't have stretched to putting a bonus LP in the other half of the gatefold sleeve, with some of those rare tracks from the extra CD - it surely wouldn't have added more than a couple of quid to the complete package costs?
Still, it's got to be worth a look...
CLICK HERE for details

Youngs Winter Warmer

A GLASS HALF-FULL

Paid a visit to the local Youngs pub for a final pint of their excellent Winter Warmer for the season - it disappears from mid-February until around November each year. Halfway through being pulled, the pump ran dry..."that's it, I'm afraid, we won't be getting any more"; what was worse, that last half was cloudier than a uber-trendy IPA and I wasn't allowed near it.

ANOTHER QUIET YEAR AT FdM TOWERS...?

...not. I'm currently trying to juggle getting ready to take pre-orders for our three April double LPs, organising promos to go out for the same, lining up our July releases, starting to gather up CDs for the summer festival goodie-bags, helping kick-start plans for a November gig, 'encouraging' more artists to record tracks for a year-end CD version of 'The Three Seasons', selling our new t-shirts and slipmats, helping a new-to-FdM band get an album out on vinyl virtually from scratch in four weeks in time for a rather special gig, plus at least three more things I've already forgotten that I was supposed to be doing - but will hopefully remember before it's too late.
...and I'm sure I promised Liz that this was going to be a quieter year.

Mothers 2

MOTHERS 2

Another Midlands event I can't make - Mothers 2 is a one-dayer recalling the old days in Birmingham when Mothers in Erdington was described as the "best rock venue in the world". Pete Bonner from Psychotron Records is promoting the gig, which features Soft Machine, Groundhogs, Chicken Shack, Edgar Broughton, Steve Gibbons and more - with proceeds going to Cancer Research.
FdM won't be there but there'll be some free back-catalogue singles from us to be had for early arrivers.
Find out more at https://www.mothers2.co.uk/

These Are The Damned

THE DAMNED

Just watched what must be one of the strangest, bleakest, most depressing early 60s British films made - 'These Are The Damned'; part Teddy Boys run riot in seaside town, part coming-of-age drama, part radioactive children held captive, part pre-apocalyptic warning, with a bit of scupturing and a bit more Oliver Reed and Kenneth Cope thrown in for good measure.
God only knows what people did after watching it in the cinema.
Altogether now..."Black leather, black leather, smash, smash, smash.."


stern meissen combo

GO EAST

Club member Till Wolff is trying to educate me in the joys of 70s East German prog bands, as my knowledge is pretty (ie woefully) limited; today, I am mostly listening to Stern-Combo Meißen and Electra

"A GOOD WALK SPOILED"

...as someone once said; lovely morning, a gentle stroll into town to stock up on Poundland jiffy-bags (rock'n'roll,eh?) turns into an assault course as I have to sidestep mobile addicts with their faces stuck in their phones, oblivious to all around them, while avoiding being mowed down by cyclists who, having reclaimed the roads, now have their eyes and wheels set on the pavements. I could go onto moan about the Chelsea tractor-sized mobility scooters, parked outside the supermarket while drivers walk round doing their shopping, but I'd be getting into decidedly un-PC territory, so I'd better not

Lichfield Vinyl Night

TOR RECORDS VINYL NIGHT

Chris McGranaghan, who runs TOR Records in Rugeley, is also involved in running an occasional vinyl night in a local pub; ever one to try to maintain some Midlands links, I've sent Chris a supply of thinly-disguised singles from the Fruits de Mer cellar to give out on a first-come-first-served basis to fellow vinyl obsessives

MINGS IN

Not quite the pun I was looking for, but Tyrone Mings has joined Aston Villa on-loan until the end of the season as we continue our fight for mid-table mediocrity and, as uninteresting as this might be to 99.9% of readers, I couldn't resist trying for a puerile pun

Matt Berry

MATT BERRY REVISITED

Matt Berry's 'Music For Insomniacs' has been reissued on vinyl and I'm going to see whether I can warm to it (or fall asleep to it) more than I could with last year's 'TV Themes' LP, which was very progressionally put together but just felt a bit cold and calculated to me

UTRECHT, HERE WE COME (PROBABLY)

Steve Hallam and I are planning a trip to the November Utrecht record fair - if anyone else is going, let us know! (We'll be buying exorbitant three-day tickets so we can get in on the Friday trade day while everyone is setting up, it gets pretty mad on the Saturday and all the big kids push to the front)

Mantle bitter at night

ALL YOU NEED FOR A ROMANTIC EVENING AT HOME

FdM's resident designer Dale Simpson was obviously planning to impress when he recycled four bottles of Mantle best bitter to create this heartwarming display.

cock soup

FINGER LICKIN' GOOD

Sainsburys deliver again - usually it's a well-judged or misjudged vinyl release, but this was down a different aisle altogether ("...this was down a different aisle...").
OK, so it's been posted on social media many times in the past, but I couldn't resist it for 80p - it made me laugh almost as much as when Liz tripped over on our way home from a curry the other night!

George Peckham

A PORKY PRIME CUT

Great to see that George 'Porky' Peckham is getting his autobiography published. George lives just down the road from me and I used to see him in the pub occasionally (although I understand he's not been well for a while); he gave me a draft to read and there are some laugh-out-loud moments from his early days which i hope made it beyond the censors into the printed edition!

kraftwerk spirit 71

THE FIRST PURCHASES OF 2019

Here we go again (as I start my 50th year of buying albums!) with what look suspiciously like suspicious releases - Kraftwerk live in 1975, including a sidelong version of 'Autobahn', and Spirit live in 1971
But they're both listed by Juno, so maybe they're OK?

A FAVOURITE MOAN RETURNS...

Liz and I sneaked off to Spain for a few days after Christmas - five grandkids running riot round FdM Towers was bloody exhausting! I managed to track down one secondhand record shop after a long and tortuous wander round the back streets of Fuengirola - Liz was not wholly convinced by my 'walking tour'.
The shop was probably OK but the crates were rammed so tight with vinyl it was impossible to sort through the albums and that's once you removed the stacks of vinyl piled on top of the crates. I soon gave up - it's just not what crate-digging is supposed to be about, in my book anyway.

Haynes synth soldering iron, anyone

KRAFTWERK BEWARE

Liz bought me a 'make your own synth' for Christmas! she even bought me a soldering iron so i can put it together - so simple, an 8-year old could do it.
Shame none of the grandkids are eight years old.

Long Live Vinyl

LONG LIVE KRAUTROCK

As we were heading off on holiday, I picked up the latest issue of Long Live Vinyl as I don't feel I've given it a proper chance to get on my monthly reading list.
I've got to admit I'm still not won over - it seems to be more about owning the physical objects than the music/bands, and the cardboard covers put me off - I guess its the equivalent of 200gm vinyl?
BUT...there's a cracking feature by Gary Tipp on 40 krautrock albums you should listen to/own; nothing too surprising in there (although FdM club member Till Wolff will be appalled to hear I don't have the Roadelius LP that's suggested by Gary), but a really good introduction to krautrock, in my opinion

BOGOFF

Well, not quite but Sainsbury's (I'm not on commission, it's just that it's the only shop in walking distance of home that stocks vinyl these days) are doing a '2 for £25' deal on all their albums at the moment. If you haven't got the Bob Stanley-curated 'Meet On The Ledge' double, that's a good place to start, although there wasn't a lot else in Walton - and offering the 'Best Of Cream' LP as part of the deal didn't quite work as it's only £12 in the shop to start with.

Harry Langdon Tom and Jerry

HEROES

When I was a kid, US TV shows seemed to consist of not a lot, with the occasional ray of sunshine in the form of a silent film or a Tom & Jerry cartoon; that said, it's only 50-odd years later that I'm starting to appreciate quite what a genius of comic-timing Harry Langdon was (I enjoyed the more slapstick stuff), but it was heart-warming to see a couple of our grandkids settling down to watch classic Tom & Jerry cartoons on one of the myriad kids TV channels over Christmas - PROPER Tom & Jerry cartoons, not the cheap and nasty ones that were churned out from the 60s onwards.

Here are our ramblings from 2018.... PREVIOUS BLOGGINGS

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