Mothers, Doors, Spirit rereleases heat up Q3

Frank Zappa and Mothers, the Doors, Spirit and the Beach Boys help keep the Summer of Love alive in 2017. Here's a roundup of the best psychedelic/1960s music due for rerelease in the third quarter. The Mothers of Invention's second album, "Absolutely Free," will cost you $35 as it returns in a 50th anniversary edition Sept. 29. The group's second album comes in a two-LP package: three sides host the audio; the fourth has a laser etching of bandleader Frank Zappa. Witness the strange and the borderline psychedelic on numbers such as "Plastic People," "Call Any Vegetable," "Son of Suzy Creamcheese" and, of course, "Invocation and Ritual Dance of the Young Pumpkin." The "Absolutely Free" album comes "mastered by Bernie Grundman and cut directly from the original analog master tapes" -- … [Read more...]

Dueling Yes bands will tour U.S.

Yes, it's a battle of the bands. In a situation that brings to mind casino-touring oldie acts, dueling versions of prog rockers Yes will be hitting the road in North America this summer and fall. The simmering dispute came to a boil in recent days as the ARW group -- Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman -- announced that they would adopt the classic-rock name of Yes for the U.S. tour. The official name, however, is Yes Featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin, Rick Wakeman. That news no doubt isn't going down well in the other Yes camp, the group headed by guitarist Steve Howe. The official "Yes" statement says: "While Jon Anderson has rights to use the name as one of the co-owners of the trademark, Yes' position is that every effort should be made by promoters, ticket … [Read more...]

‘Sgt. Pepper’ deluxe set due May 26

Apple Records has unveiled the most ambitious reissue of a Beatles title to date, with a "super deluxe edition" of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." The May 26 release celebrates the 50th anniversary of the psychedelic music classic. Highlights include a new stereo mix of the album, 5.1 surround via Bluray/DVD discs, a "lost" version of "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" and two CDs full of studio outtakes. Sorry, it's a "no" for the long-sought-after experimental Beatles track "Carnival of Light," which dates back to the period. Here's what's coming based on materials released April 4 and 5 by the Beatles' label (updated content): A new mix of the 1967 album by Gils Martin and Sam Okell from the original master tapes. Two CDs of outtakes, with almost three dozen … [Read more...]

Record Store Day gets its groove back

Psychedelic heavyweights the Doors, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix and Santana help make Record Store Day great again in 2017. The promotional event for independent music retailers has posted an unusually robust list of product for its 10th anniversary showing on Saturday, April 22. Other artists of note for psychedelic/1960s music fans include Procol Harum, Hawkwind, the Grateful Dead, Utopia, ELP, the Electric Flag and the Music Machine. Releases are all on vinyl and are "Record Store Day exclusives" unless noted. The Doors' "Live at the Matrix" recordings make their debut on vinyl on RSD. "Newly mastered by Bruce Botnick ... from recently discovered original master tapes." The 50th year set (from March 1967) includes the savage young Doors working out to soon-to-be-classics "Back … [Read more...]

King Crimson in ‘Action’ with summer tour

King Crimson plans "Radical Action" in North America this summer. Cities on the prog giants' schedule for June and July include Los Angeles, Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis and Chicago. Other dates in the 15-city sweep include San Diego, Toronto, Quebec and Rochester, N.Y. Other notable dates are the Montreal Jazz Festival and a two-night stand in Mexico City. Founder Robert Fripp's web site indicated other tour stops were set for the fall, including New York City. A few of the confirmed venues appeared to have tickets on sale ... and others had yet to even post the listing. The swing is billed as "Radical Action Tour 2017," named after the recent live recordings released as "Radical Action to Unseat the Hold of Monkey Mind." The "Monkey Mind" recordings (three CDs, one … [Read more...]

Arthur Brown back in U.S. for 8 shows

The Crazy World of Arthur Brown is returning to the New World for eight shows in February. Following up on Brown's performance at the Psycho Las Vegas festival last August, it is his band's first U.S. tour in almost a half century. Brown, best known for his psychedelic rock hit "Fire," will play the big three cities of L.A., Chicago and New York. He'll also return to Las Vegas and his old stomping grounds of Austin, Texas. Gigs also are set for Portland and San Francisco. The British singer has remained active since his late 1960s breakout, and can be caught at various European music festivals. The Crazy World of Arthur Brown's latest album is "Zim Zam Zim," crowdfunded and released in 2014. The Crazy World of Arthur Brown's self-titled debut LP of 1968 is a top 20 entry in … [Read more...]

John Wetton dies; King Crimson veteran

Prog rocker John Wetton, a veteran of the classic early 1970s lineup of King Crimson, has died at age 67. Wetton, a singer and bassist, also is known for his role in the bands Asia and U.K. He also worked with Roxy Music, Uriah Heep, Family and Wishbone Ash. With King Crimson, Wetton performed on the albums "Larks' Tongues in Aspic," "Starless and Bible Black" and "Red" -- all considered prog classics and among the band's best albums. The lineup drew on Eastern European influences and was known for instrumental improvisation. Frontman Wetton collaborated on songs for the "Red" era King Crimson with his friend Richard Palmer-James. King Crimson leader Robert Fripp compared the loud and heavy playing style of Wetton and drummer Bill Bruford to "a flying brick wall." That version of … [Read more...]

Doors, Dead, Cream debuts turn 50

1967 ushered in the psychedelic era, loudly announced by a series of historic recordings. Fifty years on, we're invited to celebrate the debut albums by the Doors, the Grateful Dead and Cream via splashy deluxe editions. Other key reissues due in the year's first quarter come from Soft Machine, the Who, Jimi Hendrix, Sun Ra, the Yardbirds, Procol Harum and Pink Floyd. The Doors' debut album -- home of "Light My Fire" and "The End" -- returns March 31 in a three-CD plus LP package dubbed "The Doors: 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition." The reissue features the compact disc premiere of the original mono mix, which also can be found on the box set's vinyl disc. The package includes a CD of the "The Matrix" live performance from March 1967, made up of eight songs from the debut album. … [Read more...]

Rock Hall welcomes prog rockers Yes

Prog rock greats Yes, electronic pioneers Kraftwerk, magic carpet merchants Steppenwolf and Brit oracles the Zombies have been short-listed for 2017 entry into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Other rock acts of note include Electric Light Orchestra, MC5, Jane's Addiction and Pearl Jam. Update: Yes finally made it into the Rock Hall, as well as Electric Light Orchestra and Pearl Jam. Other inductees for the 2017 ceremony are Journey, Tupac Shakur, Journey and Joan Baez. /update Yes' exclusion from the Rock Hall has long been a sore spot with fans of prog -- its "Close to the Edge" is widely considered the top album in the genre. The band's many members over the decades include Rick Wakeman, Jon Anderson, Bill Bruford and Steve Howe. Yes continues to tour, although the classic … [Read more...]

Waters tour to cover U.S. in 2017

Roger Waters is following up his journey to the California desert with a 40-date tour of North America, to begin in late May. The "Us + Them" tour -- the name a riff on the Pink Floyd song -- is keyed to the release of a new Waters album, his first studio effort since 1992's "Amused to Death." Tickets go on sale for the Waters tour Friday, Oct. 21. Presales begin Monday, Oct. 17, and there is a Citi Private Pass tie-in. The tour won't focus on a specific album, such as the epic and sometimes controversial "The Wall" tours of 2010-13. "It'll be a mixture of stuff from my long career, stuff from my years with Pink Floyd, some new things," Waters said. "Probably 75% of it will be old material and 25% will be new, but it will be all connected by a general theme." Know for … [Read more...]

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