From the archives, in memory of Chuck...
you'll notice his wonderfully eclectic taste...

Johan.

 

* Nino Nardini:  "Jungle obsession"
         CD/LP, Pulp Flavor, France,  2000, deleted | LP, Re-Joint 
Records RJ001, USA, 2000

         Chuck: This is a major Exotica release.  Exotica with a 
capital E ala Denny/Baxter.  Recorded in 1971 by a library music 
label, Jungle Obsession is a total concept album, unlike other 
library music releases.  The songs fit together to create an exotic 
dream world. Now this does not sound like classic Martin Denny or Les 
Baxter because there are 1970s guitars occasionally and the style has 
some early 70s rock/jazz/easy influence upon it.  But Wow does this 
album ever capture that exotica feeling of a far off mysterious land. 
The songs are almost all instrumental with only the briefest ooos and 
ahhhs.  I am surprised how well this album captures a south pacific 
jungle paradise.  There are even the occasional bird calls!  Classic 
Exotica from 1971! Yeah!!!

* Dave Pike Set:  "Masterpieces 1969-1972"
         CD, Motor Music, Germany, 1996

         Chuck: I have been rocked out by the raga jazz fusion of the 
Dave Pike Set "Masterpieces"  This is a great comp! Fusion with the 
great Volker Kreigel doing wa wa & fuzzed out guitar solos and Dave 
Pike's wonderful stylings on vibes.  It covers Dave Pikes years in 
Germany on the MPS label, 1969-72.  I'm assuming these are Dave 
Pike's best years.

* Space Ponch:  "The World Shopping With Space Ponch"
         CD, Moikai, USA?, 2000

         chuck: Keeping up the sound of shibuya-kei, Space Ponch have 
released my favorite "new" release of the year. Mix a touch of 
Fantastic Plastic, Nino Rota on Juliet of the Spirits, the Dumbo 
soundtrack, carousel music, and  warner brothers cartoon music and 
use vocoders and synths to reach a new zany height in j-pop.  This 
tops Yukari's "New Years Fresh" for zani hijinks and is almost as 
varied a ride as Fantastic Platic Machines "Luxury"   One of the 
songs felt like "powerhouse" The synths imitate organs and carousel 
sounds while a vocoder is on top of it. Without the vocals you get a 
space age 1890's feel to the music.  The melodies even seem turn of 
the century. One song,  the title song,  is a pure ambient space romp 
that is not representative of the rest of the album.  Many of the 
songs have a moog feel and the same wild zane that moog releases of 
the late 60s early 70s had.  Generally the melodies are there strong 
and catchy.   Theres a bonus space age bachelor pad stereo bouncing 
imaging going on to add to add to the whole effect.

* Ronald Stein:  "Not Of This Earth. The Film Music Of Ronald Stein"
         CD, Varese Sarabande VSD-5634, Colosseum, Germany, 1995

         Chuck: This is really a fantastic release!  Full of cheesy 
50's horror music.  If you like this style of music I can't second 
Allan's recommendation enough!!

* Tipsy:  "Uh-Oh"
         CD/Double LP, Asphodel 2003, USA, 2001

         Chuck: This is the best release of 2001!  Tipsy have pulled 
out all the sample punches on this.  I am stumped so far but 
recognize a few samples.  Every song on it is chock full of 
fade-in/fade-out samples dazzling the eardrums to ecstasy. Trippy 
floaty music with nearly apparent melodies that you can't quite hum. 
The first song "Hard Petting" is the "big hit" with a "bullet" if all 
was perfect in the music biz.  But every song on this album is a 
wonderful musical ride.  Fans of the first album will be relieved to 
find out Tipsy have kept their sound.  In fact, Tipsy has pulled of 
one of the nicer occurrences in music, their second album is better 
than their first.  In thirty years they will be playing this at 
Tommorowland in Disney World.

* Piero Umiliani:  "Musicaelettronica 1"
         CD/Double LP, Right Tempo/ Easy Tempo ET 930, Italy, 2000

         chuck: This wonderful electronic music compilation highlights 
Piero Umaliani's "Swithched on Italiano" moog music from 1969 to 
1981.  The first 2 songs are so good you are saved from dieing of 
happiness by their short length.  The whole album is only 49 minutes 
and 20 seconds long. Almost 6 minutes of the song Caravan morphs from 
from moog to moog with orchestra and ends in a wild frenzied jam with 
moog and horns blaring away. This is a really great version of 
caravan and it says in the liner notes: "Taken from the forthcoming 
Easy Tempo microgroove Ode to Duke Ellington". Another great cut is 
Arabian Synthetizer that is described as sounding like a 
"collaboration between Perrey & Kingley and Andre Popp". There's a 
variety of moog sounds going on here and Umiliani just astonishes me 
with his variety of music.  Another song on the album, Officina 
Stellare, is an outer space sci fi romp that says i the liner notes: 
"from the forthcoming Easy Tempo microgroove "Tra Scienza e 
Fantascienza"  Science and Fantasy from Easy Tempo on microgroove! 
What a label! The song "A New Exprience" is hippy dippy trippyspaced 
out!  On this song Umiliani plays the piano fender.  For me there is 
a touch of Bitches Brew feeling going on here and on another song 
Cibernetica.  All in all this album is a must for moog fans

* Vigil:  "Musica Para Hacer La Digestion"
         CD, Siesta 78, Spain, 1998

         Chuck: A 22 piece orchestra handles bacharac/frances lai 
style music with style.  You sometimes think you're listening to a 
wonderful French sound track ala 1972 but these are all new 
compositions.  All instrumental with one wordless vocal. A stunning 
release from Siesta!

* Various Artists:  "The Bombay Jazz Palace"
         CD, Outcaste 22 (distributed by Pias), UK, 2001

         Chuck: This is a fantastic Raga/Sitar comp!  My highest 
rating even though I have some cuts on it.  The 14 songs on it raga 
out with nice sitar drenched vibes.  Most are uptemmpo grooves that 
would sound hot on the dance floors around the globe.  Artists 
include Paul Horn & Nexus, Volker Kriegel, Georges Cavarenez,Dave 
Mackay, Dave Pike Set, Between, Lalo Schifrin, Groupo Batuque, Yves 
Hyat, Shocking Blue, Shandar Family, Shankar-Jaikishan, Anada Shankar 
& Muhavisha Ravie Hatchud & the Indo Hazz Following.  Get this and 
you won't be disappointed. Got mine from _Other Music_

* Various Artists:  "Cinemaphonic: Electro Soul"
         CD/LP, Emperor Norton EMN 7030, USA, 2000

         Chuck: production library musc unearthed from the archives of 
Major/Valentino records.  Funky grooves with great organ & guitar 
riffs and really fantastic synth sounds.  This is a major release in 
product music!  Lots of killer cuts. On Emperor Norton means its 
available for a reasonable price (for a cd) Lenny Hambro appears on 
this comp.  He Put out switched-on Gershwin album called Alive & Well 
& Underground with Gershon Kingley in 1970.  Also Walter Murphy, 
famous for "A Fifth Of Beethoven" disco hit.

* Various Artists:  "Hotel Easy London: Playmates Penthouse (vol.3)"
         CD, Virgin CDOVD 489.7243 8 44572, UK, 1997

         Chuck: There are 4 Hotel Easy compilations: St Tropez, 
London, Rome & Paris. All are excellent examples of true easy 
listening and the cuts are well chosen obscure instrumental gems. I 
really recommend Hotel Easy.

* Various Artists:  "Kinky Beats"
         CD/LP, Lacerba CERBAD15, UK, 1999

         Chuck: this is the BEST comp I have heard in some time.  I 
avoided getting it thinking exotica samples with modern beats would 
bore me.  Some of these songs are straight ahead Now Sounds and could 
have been released in the late 60's or put on the InFlight Karminsky 
Brother Comp.  Most  have more modern beats but these beats are just 
cool and they blend perfect with the now sounds quality of the music. 
If this is a direction modern music is taking I hope to hop on this 
band wagon.  These songs could easily fit on the Blow Up comp and 
must really sound refreshing on the dance floors around the world.

* Various Artists:  "La Guepe Volume 3 (Bananaticoco. European 
Airlines to Rio)"
         CD/LP, Dare Dare 4, France, 1999

         Chuck: great Brazilian beats. An amazing collection of 
French/Brazilian cuts. This is really one of the hottest releases of 
last year, along with Mandingo.

* Various Artists:  "La Guepe Volume 4 (Many Moods of. La guepe Volume  4)"
         CD/LP, Dare Dare 10, France, 2000

         chuck: La guepe Vol 4 brings us a nice cool funky sound of 
the early/mid 70s.  Back then this was called "Sophisticated Music" 
and there were whole radio stations dedicated to playing this 
sophisticated music while other stations played the harder or popier 
funk.  The sophisticated music on La Guepe 4 is funky but its also 
jazzy.  The cover says "jazzy and juicy selections from Europe" Most 
of the songs are instrumentals but there are some "get down" vocals 
on a few songs.  And some cool cool wordless vocals on one track. 
Nothing disco-y going on here but this music is disco's mother.  This 
kind of sophisticated cool jazzy funk music was put to a disco beat 
in the late 70s and 1980/81.  There was quite a scene of it going on 
in London and a couple of great comps came out back then.  Today's 
"Chillout music" reminds me of the grandson of this music. This is 
the most thought out of the La Guepes in that all of the music fits 
together quite well.   The one surprise "Ketja Rock" by Eberhard 
Schoiner, stands out, this song was originally called the "Monkey 
Chant" on a Nonesuch recording I purchased years ago, think it was 
called Gamelan something or other.

* Various Artists:  "Lift Off! With Apollo Sound (Unreleased 70's 
Lounge Grooves)"
         Double LP/CD, Apollo Sound APSCD 209/APSLP 210, UK, 1998

         Chuck: This is a tremendous collection of as the cover says: 
"Unrealesed 70's Lounge Grooves, Scat Vocals, Funky Fusion, Easy 
Listening"; fits quite nicely in the now sound on Irma, Sound 
Spectrum, Easy Tempo world of music.  There is something off the wall 
on this collection, I think its the melodies.   The artists include 
the Polish Radio Orchestra, the Buxton-Orr Sound and other unheard of 
artists.  The music is upbeat instrumental or wordless vocals

* Various Artists:  "Sexopolis"
         CD/LP, Fantomas 002 (bootleg?), France, 1997

         Chuck: This is a great cd of the now sound form the 70s. Its 
a 62 minute ride of some great songs, now sound instrumentals, some 
wordless vocals, and lots of upbeat vocals sung in French and a few 
jazz songs, not too much hard funk, its a soft easy funk feel on a 
few of the tracks. Its more of a now sound found on Easy Tempo and 
Irma with a couple of jazz influenced songs.  I recognized only 2 
songs, one from the haschhisch Party and one by Michel Legrand.  The 
sound quality and song selection remind me of a great Irma release 
except in French.  I especially like Guy Boyer's "Bongo & Sound" its 
all over the place it even has a sitar. There's another song where a 
singer speaks desperately in French with a cool exotic now sound 
background playing under her cries of desperation.

* Bruno Nicolai:  "Femmine Insaziabili"
         Double LP/CD, Right Tempo/ Easy Tempo ET 929, Italy, 1999

         Chuck: This is one fantastic soundtrack!   Really one my 
favorites in a while and cetain to appeal to fans of worldless vocals 
and cool sexy Italian soundtracks.   The melodies are great and and 
the vocalist is wonderful.  Lots of cool breezy instrumentals, 
(generally not hard and funky)  in that late 60's early 70's style. 
Bruno Nicola out does himself on this one. There are some real gems 
on this soundtrack.

* Fantastic Plastic Machine:  "The Fantastic Plastic Machine"
         CD, Bungalow, Germany, 1998 | CD, Emperor Norton EMN7008, USA, 1998

         Chuck: The music is full of great easy melodies, with male & 
female vocals and some instrumentals.  The sound is like the Gentle 
People with a dance beat or P5 in their easier moments. This is one 
of the most impressive releases I've heard in some time.  A modern 
pop now sound full of surprises, I can't recommend this enough. * 
Elisabeth Vincentelli: excellent and should appeal to exoticats who 
enjoy the mix of computers and easy listening or bossa.

* Gentle People:  "Simply Faboo"
         CD, Flavour Of Sound TFCK-87620, Japan, 1999 | CD, Rephlex, 
UK (distributed in USA by Caroline), 1999

         Chuck: This is really a fun listen. My first impression was 
that the Gentle People are trying lots of new things. Its more 
produced.  Some songs have more beats and more of an electronica feel 
on them. There is also ONE song that is straight 1978 disco. If you 
like disco this is really a good disco song. The songs do not ooze in 
dreamland as well as the "Journey" song off of their first album but 
there are many well written fun gentle peoplesque songs on this album.

* Goblin:  "Suspiria"
         CD, King Record KICP 2721, Japan, 1993, deleted | CD, Cinevox 
MDF 305, Italy, 2001

         Lazlo Nibble: "Tubular Bells" on mescaline. :-) * Chuck: This 
soundtrack is fabulous.  Its really wild, psychedelic weird with moog 
& splashing effects. Its more 70s psychedelic then 60s now sound.

* Antonio Carlos Jobim. Gal Costa:  "Rio Revisited"
         CD, Verve JazzVisions 841 286, USA, 1989

         Chuck: For me it is the most exotic of all Jobim albums. 
Lots of girl chorus voices feverishly singing his songs. A big, 
beautiful prodution of Jobim. You can't go wrong for the price.

* Ramon Leal & Beatrice Binotti:  "Bossanova 1999"
         CD, Siesta, Spain, 1999

         Chuck: This is one great straight ahead bossa nova album. 
Ramon Leal and the band are tight! Bearice Binotti's vocals are 
beautiful.  She can really hit the high notes. Bossa Nova standards 
are interpreted in a fresh authentic style. When they do "Summer 
Samba" Ramon Leal sings from the left speaker and Beatrice from the 
right, its a stunning  remake of this classic.   The quality of sound 
is tremendous! It is such a great recording job that  I think they 
were using the old mikes at Verve.  The album is also produced so 
well, nothing is too loud, it all blends pefectly.  There is not a 
bad song on this album.  Its a collection of bossa nova standouts.

* Various Artists:  "Expresso"
         CD, Siesta 60, Spain, 1998?

         Chuck : This cd nails the suave sophisticated easy listening 
sound that we seem to be drifting away from with the Now Sound. I 
can't recommend this Expresso cd enough, just about every song nails 
it. Way too cool!

* Various Artists:  "Girls In The Garage Volume 9: Oriental Special 
(A Collection Of Asian Girl Sound From The '60s)"
         CD, Romulan, USA, 199?

         Chuck: The now sounds of Singapore and Indonesia!  Two 
versions of the great 1966 hit Hanky Panky one punked up in english 
and the other in Chinese.  Sugar Town, Love Potion #9, Yummy Yummy, 
As Tears Go By, Fever and a few other great songs I'm not familiar 
with.  This is a rocking now sound collection!  Reasonably priced 
from medium rare records.  This is much better then I thought it 
would be, the songs have an originality and feeling that make this a 
great collection!

* Various Artists:  "The Mighty Mellow 1: A Folk-Funk Psychedelic Experience"
         Double LP/CD, YellowStone 9559, Italy, 1997

         Br. Cleve: This is really nice, a mellow groove album of 
funky soul by people like Mancini, Montenegro, David Axelrod, Andre 
Previn, etc. While not technically part of the Mood Mosaic series, it 
shares the same sensibilities. * Chuck: This has to be one of the 
smoothest mellowest funkiest psychedelic easy listening experiences 
in my whole collect of vinyl & plastic covered aluminum. I can't 
imagine anyone not liking this. Its a  70 minute must own escapade 
into very sophisticated  sounds.

* Various Artists:  "She Had A Taste For Music (Rare Gems From The 
Italian Erotic Archive)"
         CD/LP, Dagored RED103 (distributed in USA by Runt), Italy, 1999

         Chuck: It's almost all gentle instrumental soundtrack 
melodies, with a couple of oh so sexy spoken word songs. Wonderful 
soft Bacharac influenced melodies that are perfect for the wee wee 
hours or your first cup of coffee on an early breezy sunny Sunday 
morning.  Theres nothing funky or hard going on here, no driving drum 
beats until the last couple of songs.  The music floats gently until 
the end of the cd and then you want to dance and then it's all soft 
again.

* Gianno Ferrio:  "La Morte Accarezza A Mezzanotte"
         Double LP/CD, Right Tempo/ Easy Tempo ET 902, Italy, 1998

         Chuck: A tremenous soundtrack that takes you on a dark 
mysterious easy listening journey to a fearful place that is best 
left on your cd player. The sound starts off slow & easy and suddenly 
dramatic spy jazz cuts pop out with a funky organ. The atmosphere of 
suspense, fear and longing is captured dramatically by Gianni Ferrio 
with soundscapes on this all killer no filler release.

* Piero Piccioni:  "Camille 2000"
         Double LP/CD, Right Tempo ET 905, Italy, 1998

         Chuck: One of the best sensual soundtracks ever made. Pierro 
Piccioni's amazing melodies drench your ears in one great exotica 
sound experience. Then as the plot thickens so does the sound. An 
organ comes in and you're dropped off your cloud and down to a new 
earthly sound. The song Camille 2000 is simply a perfect easy soft 
exotic melody and it is the bookends on this great soundtrack.

* Milt Raskin:  "Kapu (Forbidden -The Exciting Sounds of Milt Raskin)"
         LP, Eros ERLS 5002 stereo, UK issue | LP, Stereo Crown CST 
142, USA, around 1961

         Chuck: I thrifted this red vinyl album a while ago.  The is 
Exotica with a capital "E" ala Denny and Baxter.  The lp starts off 
with bird calls and never lets go.  You are on one of the best 
Exotica trips ever,  listening to this.  This is a solid lp and all 
tunes true Exotica.  Milt Raskin thanks Dominic Frontiere for his 
asstitance. I believe the lp is from 1961 because there were some 
Christmas Seal stickeres on it dated 1961. Really this is one of the 
greatest Exotica lps up there sure to appeal to all lovers of true 
Exotica.

* The Maledictus Sound:  "Les Maledictus Sound"
         CD/LP, Mucho Gusto, Canada, 1999 | LP 180 gram HQ vinyl, 
Dagored RED 120, gatefold sleeve, Italy, 2000

         Chuck:  spy jazz jams with psche crime show beats and 
chipmunk vocals with occasional screams. Totally psyched out late 
60's grooves that are all over the place. Some whistling, some 
screams, some strings and lots of psyche guitar fuzzed out.   Some of 
the music has a Morricone late 60's horror film feel.   Some of the 
vocals are done Chipmunk Nutty Squirrel style that just adds to the 
wildness of this record.  Generally the cuts are instrumentals This 
is an amazingly weird fun record.

* Various Artists:  "Beat Jazz. Pictures From The Gone World"
         LP/CD, Pesky Serpent PS 1001, USA, 199?

         Chuck:  This is one beautiful collection of beat music, 
spoken word and crazed goofballed lyrics.  Way out there selections 
of many unknown beat artists at their most primitive level spewing 
forth undergroud sounds and styles of a bygone era.  No Zane or kitch 
here but straight ahead songs that ooze the beat feel! This is a 
fantastic selection of music.  For me its the beat of this genre on 
one cd.

* Elmer Bernstein:  "I Love You, Alice B Toklas (+ Stanley Myers' 
"Kaleidoscope")"
         CD-R, Two Little Kooks, Germany, 2001

        chuck: After years and years of loving it, the soundtrack to 
Alice B Toklas finally is released on cd!!!  I can't recommend this 
soundtrack enough!  Wonderful la la land now sounds with a super hook 
of a melody that has haunted my memory since it was released.  The 
sitar is used to accentuate the melodies in a magical tasteful way. 
The 2 basic melodies are done over and over again in variety of 
hollywood hippie dippy styles. This cd was mastered from vinyl and it 
sounds fantastic!   Though it does have a slight MP3 sound quality to 
the bass. Maybe it was the stylus used for the mastering.  Whatever, 
the sound is crisp and clear compared to many big industry company's 
remasterings. The photo copy of the front and especially the back 
covers could by a little more professional. Kaleidoscope is a nice 
pairing with a few great cuts on it. My hats off to the Two Little 
Kooks label.

 
 
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