Mr Albert Show
Guest: Inez and Moses: vocalsInformation:
LP Philips 6413001 (1970)
CD Long Hair - LHC21 (2003)
LP Pseudonym VP99.041 (2013)
First album (1970) of underrated Dutch band. A powerful collection of freaky, powerful progressive rock tracks with psychedelic leanings, dominated by composer, vocalist flute and sax player Bertus Borgers. Their music style was quite original and reminds sometimes to early Colosseum with frenetic sax and fuzz guitar riffing; also good use of organ and electric piano. A well done album which should have a wider audience. Informative booklet with band history by Bertus Borgers. From the masters.
Holland have other bands of great interest and muscial dexterity than just Focus, Earth & Fire, and Golden Earring to mention some of the more well known bands from there. After having read about this band; MR. ALBERT SHOW in a book I wanted to give them a listen. So, this band emerged out of two other bands, and indeed this was a fortunate companionship. This album has such good music, full of sax, organ and guitar riffing all the way with very memorable melodies. Its a loose groove of jazzy rock mixed with more late 60's musical tendencies and feelings. The vocals are handled by either a female vocalist, a male vocalist or more often just a blend of voices.
This album seems to be sadly unknown which is sad since this music is so joyous and full of good vibes. Off the 9 tracks, 2 are over 5 minutes, but they all have a very high standard throughout the entire album. MR. ALBERT SHOW has been compared to the English band Colosseum, and I also hear resemblances to bands like Affinity (UK), the charming early 70's rock of Gravy Train or the spacey sound of italian/german band ANALOGY.
"Act of Love" is the opening track starting of with a slightly bluesy melody but soon taking off in a jazzrock direction with loose psychedelic overtones in the laidback vocal and melodical arrangement. The vocals are as I mentioned done in harmonies, or maybe "collectively" is a better word. Either way it sounds very warm and above all: unpretentious. The songs never become obvious or so but instead often puts in nice addictive melodious breaks and themes or harmonica solos and so on. Bertus Bogers (saxophone and vocals) were one of the main writers in this band."Don't worry" is a short song clocking in at 2:37 but still one of my true favorites, party because the singer Inez' fantastic bluesy vocal style. And indeed the musical hooks are just unbeatable, this is early 70's loose progressive rock in the best style. "White bear skin coat" is another quick song with some humorous lyrics and indeed catchy rhythms and beats impossible to dislike. It might start of with some three chord moves with fast rhythm pattern but indeed adds some usual delightful musical twist and turns. "Wild sensation" was released as a single back then and is another true highlight. "There's a sad song in the air" is the longest track on the album with its 7:14. And indeed it has some long solos and jams and I am not a big fan of these kind of pointless meandering songs but in this case I really do like the solos and can safely say that this track is another important highlight here.
This might not be for fans of strictly symphonic musical preferences, but more for the adventurous progressive rock fan who likes his music with a big dose of rock and riffs.
I had never heard of this band other than a listing in Dag Erik Asbjornsen's excellent Scented Gardens Of The Mind book. The Long Hair reissue provides a brief but interesting biography with photos, although it looks like the cover has been altered from the original.
Similar to Colosseum, this is very good jazz based music with a touch of psychedelia, in some ways close to Denmark's Blast Furnace, Ache, and Sweden's Made In Sweden. It's all very well done, and the band does stretch out with lots of organ and both Male and Female vocals. One of the better progressive albums I have heard from The Netherlands.
Mr. Albert Show Featuring Bertus Borgers
LP Philips 6413015 (1971)
LP Philips 6440313 (1977)
CD Long Hair - LHC00022 (2003)
LP Pseudonym VP99.041 (2013)
The second album of the Dutch band Mr. Albert Show from 1971 Warm Motor was a worldwide release. The US-Version had a different cover and was named Dutch Treat. This album is more on the trippy side than the first one, spheric organ, flute/sax, and great guitarwork . The 6 tracks show the bands outstanding talent for progressive rock music with trippy jazz elements but also straight Hardrock. Music ranges from Golden Earring, King Crimson, Colosseum style over to several Krautrock bands. Also included 5 great non-album 45' tracks and outtakes + photos.
At the time of their second album, the band had dropped the psychedelic element of their music to concentrate more on the jazz-rock side, resulting in some first rate progressive rock. 'Did You Really Find Somebody' opens the album, and straight away you can hear the difference. Much more relaxed and jazz-orientated, it includes a lovely jazz guitar solo, which you hear far too little these days, and good use of the horn section. 'Electronic Baby' beefs up the rock element slightly, with some heavy guitars making an appearance, and also includes a good keyboard solo and a nice flute interlude. 'Let It All Hang Out' has a funky groove to it, and a vocal at times reminiscent of Joe Cocker, while 'Bantal' is the most out and out jazz track on here, featuring intricate rhythms and time changes. The generally longer tracks on this album (only six in all) work very well, and none of them drag at all, making for a truly progressive album - in that the band have actually progressed on from their debut. Now out on CD with bonus tracks - a couple of fifties style rock'n'rollers (which really do not fit in with the music on the rest of the album) in 'I Can't Help It' and 'Show Me Your Tongue', and whether you have heard their first one or not this is definitely worth checking out
(Peter Jolly, Peterjolly)
LP Pseudonym VP99.050 (2014)
Pitching themselves somewhere between The Doors, the Stones and Traffic, Dutch underground legends Mr Albert Show had a huge live following, but couldn’t translate their appeal into record sales. They called it a day in 1973, after two albums, and their last concert is the subject of this double-vinyl release from reissue specialist Pseudonym.
Ten elongated songs include two Stones and a Beatles cover (Jumping Jack Flash, Little Red Rooster, Things We Said Today), used as jumping-off points for improvisation, but fans will be keener on the 15-minute title track, an original composition that was never committed to studio tape. The vibe is somewhere between Man, in the relentless drumming of Arnold Bogaart, and Traffic/Colosseum in the sax of frontman Bertus Borgers, who also offers the occasional Joe Cocker-esque vocal. But the primarily instrumental result is surprisingly different, given the stated ingredients and influences.
Packaging is, as we now expect from Pseudonym, first class, with informative sleevenotes in the gatefold, along with period pics. It’s not hard to feel that music like this is best experienced on vinyl – and, while the source tape was never intended for commercial release, any imperfections don’t spoil the experience. This is a free-flowing and uninhibited performance that deserves to be heard.
(Michael Heatley, Record Collector Magazine)
Philips 6075 102 (1970)
Philips 6075 109 (1970)
Philips 6075 120 (1971)