Tuesday, March 01, 2005

"Oh, I Can See CLEARLY, NOW!"

Say! I finally got my glasses today, so maybe NOW I can actually see what I'm typing and not have to go back and do about a zillion typos!

Got one book in today's mail; not what I was really hoping would come in, but a pretty neat one just the same: 1st. Issue Special (DC) #8 (11/75)=1st.app. & origin of Mike Grell's "Warlord". I think this is probably the only app. I have of the Warlord character currently in my collections, even though at one time or another I've probably had most of his own title run. I was never a huge fan of this title, but I always thought the stories were pretty neat with its "hollow-earth" theme and fighting dinosaurs and the like. Warlord's first app. is really somewhat "rough", artwise, compared to later issues Grell did after he'd been on the title a couple of years, but this was the first app. of a bronze DC character...and most importantly...it was cheap!

Also went by a place called "The Yard Sale Store" here locally. The owner said he had a couple of monitors for sale and I needed an extra one for this spare old system I have which contains a dot matrix program. Unfortunately, the one he pulled out of storage was made by Apple and it didn't have the regular-type pin connections that modern ones do, so I couldn't use it. Said he had another one and he'd drag it out sometime and let me see it as well.

While I was looking thru his store stock I found 4 older l.p.s and bought them: Todd Rundgren's "Faithful"(1975), The Moody Blues "Octave"(1978), Rick Wakeman's "The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and The Knights of The Round Table" (1975 - and complete w/booklet, incidently), and King Crimson's "In The Court of The Crimson King" (1969) Not that it really matters, but I'll give these a personal rating of 1-10.

This Wakeman album isn't, I don't think, as good as say his "Journey To The Center of The Earth", or "The Six Wives of Henry VIII", but it does have a fun and rousing ragtime-like interlude mixed in with the song, "Merlin the Magician", and that's probably the best cut on the l.p.. Rating: 6

"Faithful" is a pretty good album for Rundgren, but I find myself listening more to the various cover songs of The Beatles' "Rain", and "Strawberry Fields Forever", or Hendrix's "If Six Were Nine", or The Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations" than the rest of the songs. "Good Vibrations" is especially well re-done, as well as the Hendrix cover. The Beatle covers are fine, save that he seems to hesitate a bit in places where the originals did not. But then, this IS his versions. Rating: 8

Octave" isn't my favorite Moody Blues album, but not bad. (I love the wavery vocals, so what can I say?) Probably the best song on this l.p. is "Top Rank Suite", although I think the only one that ever got a lot of radio play is "Stepping In A Slide Zone". Both songs are excellant, as is "Driftwood", and I liked the use of the electric organ on the final cut, "The Day We Meet Again". This was the first time I'd ever listened to the entire album, having just heard various cuts from time-to-time. One thing I notice with this one is that it doesn't have as much of a connecting theme as other MB l.p.s, but you can definately tell that as a group, they had matured since previously released stuff in the 60-70's. You can always depend on anything The MB did, that their music will be excellant and the combination of vocals flawless. Rating: 7.5

King Crimson's music is...well....something you need to be on peyote, maybe, to truely appreciate (not that I'd advocate such things), but as I can recall (barely), most of the times I heard their stuff ("back when") I was usually in a a smoke-filled room somewhere. "21st. Century Schizoid Man including Mirrors" definately gets you rockin' right from the start and geared towards anyone who loves a mean lead axe and riviting drum. It is to be enjoyed by anyone who loves such comparitive songs from groups of that time such as Black Sabbath, or Bloodrock, but other songs on this l.p. have over-tones of The Moody Blues, or Spirit. The variety is the part I always liked about this album; that they can go from a rocker like "21st. CSM", to a ballad such as " Talk to the Wind" with it's light flute, then right into an orchestrated "Epitath". What I never cared for is that they seemed to get you "all revved up, but with no place to go" with too many slow-type songs; especially "Moon Child", which is way too long and has too much strange crap in it to be enjoyable. Fortunately this l.p. wraps-up with "The Court of The Crimson King" which is both up-lifting and mellow, finishing the song with something that sounds like a pipe organ. It would have sounded better had they ended "The COTCK" right before that. The whole album is really something you'd have to be in the right mood to hear, and have, oh...30-40 minutes to kill. And, even though I like parts of it, overall I'd have to give it a Rating: 5.5 (with apologies).

And finally, since I'm on the subject of music, I've been watching a little about Wacky Jacko's trial. Ever get the feeling that Jackson's not taking the whole thing very seriously? Tapping his feet and getting into his own music when it's played as background on the filmed interviews shown in court? Really, I don't know if he's guilty or not; that's up to a Court of Law to determine, but I think he would at least be concerned that he'll more than likely be convicted of contributing to the delinquency of minors from the testimonies that he gave them alcohol. But...maybe he IS innocent...well...innocent of any molestation charges... and he thinks all he'll end up getting is the proverbial "slap of the wrist"? This may actually be somewhat more interesting for me to keep up with that I'd thought.


At 5:14 PM , Blogger Johnny Bacardi said...

I really liked Rundgren's "Rain" cover; especially the little east indian yodel he throws in on the line "it's all a state of mind" towards the end. The originals are a mixed bag; I love "Cliche", like a few of the others, and am kinda bored with "The Verb To Love" and the "Hambuger hell" song.

Of course, I love the Crim as well, and I'm kinda like you about "Moonchild"- I just don't have much patience with that atonal stuff they did so much early on. I heard Crimson for the first time in your basement back in the day, y'know! Remember that story I drew that was based on that song? My favorite KC albums came a bit later, though- Lizard and Islands, and of course Starless.

That Wakeman album is pretty lame, actually, and I remember reading about the stage show he had with people ice skating with knight costumes wearing cardboard horses. I do like two cuts from that one, though- "Guinevere" and the one you mentioned, "Merlin".

I haven't heard that Moodies album, that was one band I never developed an interest in...

At 5:27 PM , Blogger ~D.Puck' said...

Oh, God. I was the one who introuduced you to KC (and we're not taling about "The Sunshine Band", right?) Forgive me, Johnny.(*heh*)


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