Friday, October 31, 2008

Benefit concert for Wyatt

Elastic Rock is posting a Rick Wright sampler called "The Great Rick In The Sky". Here you get Pink Floyd's "Obscured By Clouds (Part1 -Part3)" from The Benefit Concert for Robert Wyatt, Rainbow Theater, London, 4 November 1973.

If you are jumping from joy, and feel a little embarrassed because of that, try Bohren & Der Club of Gore. This music will get you down to earth. It runs slowly, like a deep and dark river. Quite nice really! The last album is called "Dolores" (Pias 2008), and the band is Thorstein Benning, Christoph Clöser, Morten Gass and Robin Rodenberg.
I borrowed both "Dolores" and "Geisterfaust" (2005) from a friend, and have to say "Geisterfaust" is even darker (but the titles are a nice course in German: Zeigefinger, Daumen, Ringfinger, Mittelfinger og Kleiner Finger). This is perhaps not the best music if you are already depressed.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Free Will & Testament

MTV will make all (?) their videos available on the net. I had to check if Robert Wyatt was there, and yes we get "Free Will and Testament" from "Shleep" (1997), with a memory album video by Alfreda Benge. This is a fine and sad tune, I just love it! It's written by Robert Wyatt and Kramer and was first on Hugh Hopper and Kramer's "A Remark Hugh Made" (Shimmydisc 1996).

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

SOFT MACHINE : Anatomy Of Pop '70

Soft Machine documentary from 1970 here.

Soft Machine in Norway in 1971 (again!)

I've mentioned Lasse Marhaug's commissioned work for The Henie Onstad Arts Center a couple of times, and here we go again. I found an old article (5 April 2008) on Marhaug's work in the paper version of the Norwegian newspaper "Dagsavisen" today, and of course it lists a lot of the interesting recordings Marhaug could use (Reich, Cage, Stockhausen and more), among them Soft Machine's concert from 1971. I'll translate as best I can what Lars Finborud from the Henie Onstad Center says:"Several times every month we get mails from fans and collectors who want the recording of the Soft Machine concert with Robert Wyatt" (well, he calls it Robert Wyatt's band, but let's not push it!). The answer unfortunately is that they can not help at all. I guess copyright holders may do something after long fights, but the museum are "not even allowed to bring the tapes outside the house". So stop bothering the man.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


all.about.jazz reviews Atomic's box "Retrograde". Some box!

The Norwegian Noise Winter Games, better known as All Ears 2009, is to be held in Oslo 15 - 18 January.

14 Decemeber there is a benefit concert for Canterbury bass man Hugh Hopper at the 100 Club in London. Hopper is treated for leukemia, and you may support him by buying his records. Reel Recordings double-up royalties for Hopper for the Soft Heap record "Al Dente". Check out "What's Rattlin'" for news.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Svein Finnerud Trio

Plastic Strip is still digging in archives with old Norwegian jazz. 3 November is the release date for Svein Finnerud Trio ”The Complete Released Works 1968-1999”. In this box you get 3 CDs and 1 DVD covering old television shows, radio recordings, a 40 page booklet and these records:
Svein Finnerud Trio: Svein Finnerud Trio (1968)
Svein Finnerud Trio: Plastic Sun (1970)
T.Botnen/S.Finnerud Trio/C.Neumann: MULTIMAL (1971)
Svein Finnerud Trio: Thoughts (1984)
Svein Finnerud Trio: Travel Pillow (1994)
B. Andresen/S. Finnerud/P. Nilssen-Love: Egne Hoder (1999).

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Wyatt Wired

Robert Wyatt is in the November issue of The Wire (#297, 2008). In "The inner sleeve" he chooses a poster for "The Angolan Refugee Rescue Committee Benefit Concert" held in September 1963. Wyatt seem to like Max Roach and Abbie Lincoln a lot.
Hal Willner is "blindfolded" in the magazine and does not recognize Robert Wyatt's "Born again cretin". Still he says: "Anything Robert Wyatt does is well worth listening too". True!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Words for the dying

I wasn't quite finished with Dylan Thomas after the White Lord Jesus blogpost, and just had to play John Cale's "Words for the dying" (WB 1989) and it's "Falklands Suite". You get "Do not go gentle into that good night" in a live version (and with lyrics too, to help some of you).

White Lord Jesus

I didn't catch White Lord Jesus the first time they were around. 24 years after their debut "Amen", I found "..into that good night" at the library. As with most of the music I listen to, it's hard to place them in one genre, but it is some rock, some prog, some pop, some metal and so on. Check out some examples on MySpace (where they say "alternative/electronic"!). The CD is divided into two parts, based on a Dylan Thomas poem, and we get "Do not go gentle..." and "..into that good night". In the last part White Lord Jesus cover Suicide ("Frankie Tardrop") and Bob Dylan ("The Ballad of Hollis Brown").
The real reason I picked this album, was these guest artists (mentioned in this blog several times): Maja Ratkje, Hild Sofie Tafjord, Nils Økland (plays Hardanger fiddle, and is mentioned more often in Wyatting) and Arve Henriksen! Lots of good people. Lots of good music.

Do not go gentle into that good night

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Dylan Thomas

Friday, October 24, 2008

NO, GUTVIK feat. Kjetil Møster

Few people were willing to fight the rain on Thursday, to join the shop Robot's (Bergen) improvnoisefreejazzevening. Some of us did, and were rewarded with a great concert. The band didnt seem to be bothered by the lousy attendance, and gave it all among fancy clothes for the young, baby clothes, records and books. Thanks a lot! The band: Børre Mølstad – tuba, electronics, Dag Erik Knedal Andersen – drums, Ketil Gutvik – guitar and guesting on saxophone this evening: Kjetil Møster.
A guy (who should consider getting a better camera) even uploaded a short video on YouTube!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

If the revolution could start right now

I'm into singles again. 7" records are cool, even if it's not surf music on them. One of the last ones to enter the house is Lasse Marhaug's "If the revolution could start right now" (Ketchup Cavern 2008). Wow! Here you get some serious noise on one side, and nothing at all on the other. Instead of trying to be smart, and describe this music, I cite the record store Looop : "This is a physical record, instead of someone twisting knobs it sounds like someone slapping you around and yelling in your ear for five minutes and five seconds. Total radness!" 1oo copies are made, and I bought my record froom Looop. Remember the third "o" too, if you want to contact them, or you'll end up on some Norwegian site dedicated to recycling. I even tried to send my money to the recycling people!


Arve Henriksen is out with another great album, called "Cartography", and he's left Rune Grammofon for ECM this time. Some of the music is sad, some is strange and some is a bit spooky. David Sylvian's readings are in the "strange" sections here, but OK, we can accept that. Parts of the album have a soundtrack feel, and some tracks are a bit short, and we miss the end of the movies, but this album will grow and get even better with repeated listening, I'm quite sure about that.
Two tracks were recorded live during Punkt festivals in Kristiansand (Norway) in 2005 and 2006. The team: Arve Henriksen, Jan Bang, Audun Kleive, David Sylvian, Eivind Aarset, Lars Danielsson, Erik Honoré, Helge Sunde, Trio Mediaeval, Vérene Andronikof, Vytas Sondeckis, Anna Maria Friman and Ståle Storløkken. Manfred Eicher must have had a day off, because Bang and Honoré produced the stuff.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Babij Jar

Babij Jar
Originally uploaded by svennevenn

If you are interested in Norwegian rock, and are in Oslo 23 October, check out Babij Jar at MONO. Babij Jar made a great album called "The night before" in 1985 (Uniton), and haven't played live since 1989. See MySpace for info on band members.
These people are great guys (I guess!), and they better be with a band name like that.

Robert Wyatt loves...

Robert Waytt reveals five things he likes in Drowned in Sound. I'm really not sure about that "Bubble and squeak" stuff.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

It's summer again

Bertrand Burgalat and Robert Wyatt's ”This summer night” is now out on Domino, and this time it is a 12" with a Hot Chip mix on the b side. Hot Chip made the song almost nine minutes long, and they keep Wyatt's voice up front. It's good. Buy it from Domino or I-Tunes. Burgalat's original tune (Tricatel) is still my favorite.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Harlan Ellison

Sunday I watched "Dreams with Sharp Teeth – A Film About Harlan Ellison" at The Bergen International Film Festival (BIFF). I only knew Harlan Ellison from the book "Deathbird stories", but I guess I have to buy some more books by the man, and I will pay for them. Festival boss Tor Fosse told the audience that the BIFF festival had invited Ellison to visit the festival, but he couldn't make it this time. I would have liked to see the persons with the courage to ask him questions after the film, Ellison seemed to hate being around stupid people wanting autographs and a chat, and listen to me: never talk to this guy when he's trying to take a leak!
Director Erik Nelson has got good taste, and picked Richard Thompson to make the soundtrack. Nelson produced Werner Herzog's "Grizzly Man", where Thompson also did the soundtrack.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Frankfurt tickets

I hate writing this blog post, and have waited far too long to do it, but I just have to realize that I will probably not make it to the Frankfurt festival, Wyatt's music and all. Nobody will ever get me up in an airplane, and the travel from Bergen to Frankfurt (and back!) will just take too much time. I have a combi ticket for all three nights, payed 80 Euros for it and will be happy to get some of it back. If somebody have been waiting for an opportunity like this, mail me from here, and see what happens. The decision will be all mine.
Aaaargh! It's done!

Recommended Records Sampler

Recommended Records Sampler (2)
Originally uploaded by svennevenn

ReR is reissuing "Recommended Records Sampler" (1982) 20 October. This was originally a double LP, and Robert Wyatt is singing "The Internationale". See the rest of the tracks on Amazon.
I have the original album, but unfortunately only the LP with Robert Wyatt on it. What's even better, I have two of that one, so if you bought one with two of the other LP, mail me and we'll make a deal.

David Lynch and The Who

Bergen International Film Festival (BIFF) is happening right now, and yesterday i saw "David Lynch - One Night Stand". The show was in three parts, with "Lynch 2", "Interview Project" and "David Lynch's Cooking Show".
"Lynch 2" is part two of a documentary about the making of "Inland Empire" (part 1 was shown on BIFF last year). After seeing the documentary, you might understand why Lynch's movies end up being the way they are.
In the "Interview Project" Lynch's people have been traveling around small town USA, interviewing ordinary people. The interviews we were shown were just great, and touching too. I think all of them (a total of more than 300?) will be published on the internet.
And finally, Jamie and Nigella better start preparing a new career. "David Lynch's Cooking Show" will blow all other chefs away. In this one Lynch describes in detail ("Now I'm going to get some fresh water. Now I'm going to find a spoon".) how he cooks quinoa, broccooli and sea salt. "Damn! This is so gooood!". (Part two of the programme here).

I also saw "Amazing Journey: The Story of The Who". The Who was never quite my band, but the film is OK, and you get some very nice old footage. One of the best ones you may watch below. Keith Moon is testing out some fireworks, and the host of the show is not really relaxed, is he?

Saturday, October 18, 2008


The souvenirs from Southern Lord arrived yesterday! The live recording of the sunn o))) concert at the Borealis Festival in Bergen in 2007 is now available as a double vinyl album (and only in that format). This is a beautiful package. It does not sound as massive on my stereo as in the church room of course, but I was there, and I got the album, and check out that T-shirt. I'm going to wear it at all staff meetings this winter. More pictures here.
The band: Stephen O'Malley, Greg Anderson, Attila Csihar, Tos Nieuwenhuizen, Steve Moore, Lasse Marhaug and John Hegre (FOH).

Friday, October 17, 2008

Lost classics. Hidden Gems. Amazing Stories

"The Rough Guide To the Best Music You've Never Heard" is in da house. Never heard? Well, i guess most of this blog's well educated readers know most of these artists to some degree. Among our artists, that have got their own chapters, are Robert Wyatt, Kevin Ayers, Gong and Henry Cow ("Prog and Proud"!) and Nick Drake, Nico and Ivor Cutler ("Outsiders, the musicians that never fitted in").

First question, when holding a book like this: Do we really need it, in the times of the internet, when it's so easy to find information? Well, let's suppose that the authors are quite smart, and it's always nice with some reading on paper, so OK, I don't regret buying it. We are served short biographies, some good references and a few juicy stories.
The authors also have (5-10) listening suggestions for each artist. When it comes to Robert Wyatt, they suggest we listen to "Rock Bottom" (all of it), "Moon in June", "Oh Caroline", "Shipbuilding" and "Strange Fruit". Fair enough.
Fred Frith, Peter Blegvad and John Greaves don't get their own chapters, but fall into the Henry Cow bag. Towards the end of the Henry Cow chapter we read this: "In 1998 they reformed for "Ca Va", their first album in 23 years. Needless to say, the record sank without a trace. It wouldn't really have been Henry Cow otherwise." No it wouldn't, "Ca Va" would be a Slapp Happy album, with Anthony Moore, Peter Blegvad and Dagmar Krause. Wouldn't it?

Find a treasure

Seek out the St. Thomas box from Racing Junior, in stores now (at least in Norway). Thomas Hansen (Saint Thomas, St. Thomas) died last year, only 31 years old. Buy the box, and support the work for better psychiatric health care for young people.
You get a double "best of + rarities"-CD called "You May Find A Treasure Everywhere" (may be bought separately), a double tribute album, a DVD with videos (hardly Oscar material, but great fun) and a small book in Norwegian called "Kåntri og western bok". The songs are sad and strange, and I hereby classify them as lo-fi freak folk country.
St. Thomas sings "There's only one of me", and perhaps one of him was enough, but he should have stayed here so much longer.
Check out this site later, for ordering: (should in theory be working in October).

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pillows and Prayers

Samplers with lots of different artists on them have a tendency to be tempting, bought and just placed on the shelf. Or? Let me just mention a quite new reissue of "Pillows and Prayers: Cherry Red Records 1981-1984" (2007). This is a box with three CDs and one DVD with artists from Cherry Red, like Eyeless in Gaza, Tracey Thorn, Marine Girls, Everything But The Girl , Kevin Coyne, Monochrome Set and least, but not last, Ben Watt and Robert Wyatt's "Walter and John".

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Invisible Means

Invisible Means
Originally uploaded by svennevenn

John French, Fred Frith, Henry Kaiser and Richard Thompson made two albums as French Frith Kaiser Thompson, called "Live, Love Larf & Loaf" (1988) and "Invisible Means" (1990). The last one is reissued, with one extra track (available on I-Tines as one song download soon?). These albums seldom get rave reviews (and I'm not sure the artists love them either), but they're OK! "Invisible means" has a scary opera ("March of the cosmetic surgeons"), an ironic song about being famous a bit late ("Now that I am dead") and a rocking "Loch Lomond". Not bad at all!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

This is it

I'm not sure Marnie Stern makes my kind of stuff, but I would love to be able to shop and say: Have you got "This Is It and I Am It and You Are It and So Is That and He Is It and She Is It and It Is It and That Is That"?

Monday, October 13, 2008


This summer Cherry Red issued a double CD with both of Morgan Fisher's "Miniatures" albums. Here you get 120 60 seconds tunes in one package. Robert Wyatt's "Rangers in the night" is here, and you get Lol Coxhill, Ivor Cutler, Fred Frith (with "Entire work of Henry Cow"!) and a bunch of others. The full title is "Miniatures Vol.1 & 2: Two Sequences of Tiny Masterpieces from 1980 and 2000/Edited By Morgan Fisher". You may shop at Amazon .

Hugh Hopper

The good old Canterbury bass player Hugh Hopper is treated for leukemia. We wish him well, and all the best therapy available. Check out news, discographies,archives and all things Hopper here.

Marhaug/Gustafsson split 7"

You thought 7" records were meant to contain pop music? Well, some people dance to other kinds of music, and Lasse Marhaug and Mats Gustafsson (The Thing) have shared a 7" vinyl, issued by Ukrainian Quasi Pop (2008). Marhaug plays turntable, guitar (I can even hear a guitar solo in there!) and collcts sounds on "So-So Green tea With Buddha", while Gustafsson plays slide sax and electronics on "Jag Vill Lyda Order" (ie I'll follow orders). Both tunes are tributed to Åke Hodell. That's a new name to me, but he seems to have been a Swedish fighter pilot, author and text-sound composer.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

On the wall in Oslo

If you're in Oslo, you might like to visit Kim Hiorthøy's exhibition at Standard (Oslo) (until 1 November 2008). Unfortunately I missed this one, but the title of the exhibition is promising: "FEAR FOLLOWED BY BOREDOM FOLLOWED BY FEAR FOLLOWED BY BOREDOM FOLLOWED BY FEAR FOLLOWED BY BOREDOM FOLLOWED BY SLEEP 2008".

Eliza Carthy

Don't forget that Eliza Carthy's beautiful "Dreams of Breathing Underwater" (Topic 2008) came this summer (OK, I almost forgot it myself, until now). This is a nice collection of self penned songs in a British folk setting, and spiced with pop, rock, zydeco, Tex Mex and Indian raga (?). Listen here, and visit the whole family.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Rebel Music

Robert Wyatt's "Out of the blue" (from "Comic Opera") is on the Mojo sampler "Rebel Music" (Mojo, November 2008). Some of the other rebels on the album are: The Clash, Billy Bragg, Nina Simone, Woody Guthrie, Bob marley and Gil Scott-Heron.


I found this tractor parked in Oslo yesterday. Any of you know the artist?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Different every time

Read Daniel Trilling's interview with Robert Wyatt in New Statesman 9 October.
Via Strong Comet's Eterni-Tea Forums.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Look out for Arve Henriksen and his new album Cartography on ECM 27 October. Musicians, collected at Amazon seem to be, Arve Henriksen - (trumpets, voice), with: Jan Bang - (samples), Erik Honoré - (synthesizer), Audun Klieve - (percussion), Eivind Aarset - (guitars), Anna Maria Friman - (voice), David Sylvian -(speaker) and others.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The original freaks

Virgin Fugs (1965)
Originally uploaded by svennevenn

This summer a new 4 CD box was issued, with the original freaks, The Fugs. Reviewers claim that the collection may not be perfect, but look for their first albums then. You get lots of fun and madness from original members Ed Sanders, Tuli Kupferberg, Ken Weaver and others. Not for the weak ones, or perhaps just the right stuff for us.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Another World

Antony And The Johnsons are out with a new five track EP called Another World, as a teaser for a new album in 2009. I think it is beautiful, and perhaps not as sad as the previous stuff from Antony. The songs are Another World • Crackagen • Shake That Devil • Sing for Me • Hope Mountain.

Monday, October 6, 2008

John Hegre and Ivar Grydeland

Sunday evening John Hegre (Noxagt, Jazkammer, Kaptein Kaliber) and Ivar Grydeland (Huntsville etc) gave a guitar concert at The Landmark club in Bergen. They each played a 45 minutes set, and to call it guitar playing is a bit of a simplification. Pedals and electronics more like it. This was pretty good stuff, even if they both kept on a bit too long for my taste. Grydeland started off with a something sounding like a computer game (Space Invaders), and made an ambient (almost!) piece around it, while Hegre played more in a contemporary classic (pling plong)style, and even dished out some rock riffs.
The program stated that Hegre would play acoustic and quiet! Anyway, all the ten people in the audience were quite happy.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Kaptein Kaliber

Today I went to the children's jazz club Bajazz in Bergen, where Kaptein Kaliber was playing. David Åsheim and John Hegre promised to play "nice and melodic electronic music, with lots of strange sounds" on plastic toy instruments. Could it get any better than that? Kids were stagediving (well, stage stumbling rather) but some of them (and their parents!) lost interest as the electronica too stumbled along. Still a quite nice Sunday afternoon for a kid my age.
And I could hardly believe it, but an audience with lots of small children can talk almost as much as the usual jazz club audience during concerts! I'm impressed.

"Kill your friends"

The great music industry novel? Hardly, but John Niven's "Kill your friends" (W. Heinemann, 2008) takes you along on a wild journey through the music business (England 1997) with A&R man Steven Stelfox, while he drinks, uses cocain, shops hookers, kills his friends, cheats everybody and tries to sign a band from time to time. It's so cynical and over the top, that in fact it makes you laugh quite often.
The book opens with a classic Hunter S. Thompson saying, and let's have one from the story too: "Music really does cross all barriers. Greed is so incredibly inclusive".

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Sex Tags

"Sognom pt. 4" in gallery NO. 5 Bergen Kunsthall is a very tiresome exhibition! Seven pictures are placed on the floor, and you have to get down on your knees and turn them around yourself to see! Sex Tags invited these people to make one drawing each: Daniel Pflumm, Johannes Høie, Bjørn Torske, Diego Fernandez, Kim Hiorthøy, Kris Pettersen and Mikko Viljakainen.

Friday, October 3, 2008

BIFF 15 - 22 oktober

The programme for the Bergen International Film Festival (BIFF)is ready. As usual they have a music programme, and I might visit the films about The Who, James Brown, Patti Smith and Justice.
Other interesting films : "David Lynch - One Night Stand", "Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson" and "Dreams with Sharp Teeth - A Film About Harlan Ellison". Richard Thompson made the soundtrack for the last one.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

St Thomas box

Norwegian artist St Thomas, who died last year (31 years old), is honoured with a box of treasures containing, CDs, a DVD and a book. Lambchop and Grasshopper are among the artists doing cover versions of St Thomas' songs here. This release is in support of St. Thomas Memorial Trust for better psychiatric health care for young people.

The Best Music You've Never Heard

I read it somewhere, just trust me, that Robert Wyatt and Kevin Ayers got their own chapters in the new book ""The Rough Guide to the Best Music You've Never Heard"" by Nigel Williamson, David Smyth and Robert Webb. I guess I'll just have to order it right now.

And (of course!) I read about it in Kentish Gazette!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Susanna: Flower of Evil

Susanna Wallumrød's new album"Flower of Evil" will be out on Rune Grammofon 12 October. Bonnie ”Prince” Billy guests on two songs. We steal the list of songs from Rune:

Jailbreak (phil lynott)
Can´t shake loose (russell ballard)
Who knows where the time goes (sandy denny)
Vicious (lou reed)
Without you (pete ham, tom evans)
Dance on (prince)
Joy and jubilee (will oldham)
Janitor of lunacy (nico)
Changes (geezer butler, tony iommi, ozzy osbourne, bill ward)
Wild is the will (susanna k. wallumrød)
Won´t come around here no more (tom petty, dave stewart)
Goodbye (susanna k. wallumrød)
Forever (roy harper)
Lay all your love on me (benny andersson, björn ulvaeus)

I bet Susanna's version of Nico's "Janitor of Lunacy" will be great, and let's see Nico in a video from 1972 (she sings "Janitor of Lunacy" after a while), and a strange but fascinating ballet to the music too!

Remade in the dark

Billboard write that Robert Wyatt has made new mixes of three of the tunes on Hot Chip's new version of "Made in the dark", "Remade in the dark".

Robert Wyatt will be present at the jazz festival in Frankfurt later this month (also read in "Welt Kompakt" 1 October).