Avalanche was a project by multi instrumentalist Jan Blom from Gouda. With the help of a few other musicians they recorded an album. It was recorded with the help of a technician on only four tracks in a school in The Hague. 500 copies of the album were released. Although there were plans to record another album, the band ceased to exist. Daan Slaman would later join Pinpoint.
Perseverance Kills Our Game
Produced and mixed by Sjako van der Speld
Engineered by Hans Heeres
Recorded at the De Zespunt in Moordrecht, Thomas Moore MAVO Den Haag and Raam 123 Gouda during September/Oktober 1979
LP Starlet 10036 SL (1979)
CD Guerssen GUESSCD05 (2015)
LP Guerssen GUESS144 (2015)
For hardcore collectors of progressive rock music, the obscure megabuck private pressing almost always ends up being somewhat of a disappointment. The hit ratio of great quality obscurities is quite low. There are many reasons for this including low budgets, amateur musicians, lack of direction and so on. So when a pure gem like Avalanche is found while wading through the chaff, there is some real cause to take notice and celebrate.
On the mostly instrumental Perseverance Kills Our Game, Avalanche achieves all that makes a low-budget production endearing. First of all, the playing is true to the heart - an intangible that is subtle though very recognizable for those who hear these type of recordings on a regular basis. The musicianship here is superb though hardly symphony orchestra quality. And there is a real intimacy that surrounds the atmosphere - as if you're in the room while they're recording. And perhaps the fact that Avalanche have six full-time members helps keep the album from the one-dimensional nature of most private releases.
Side one is primarily a folk rock affair with wonderful acoustic guitar, piano, bass, drums and sparse (one track), but well done vocals. The real highlights, though, have to be the gorgeous flutes (various types) and the soaring and spiritual electric guitar work. For pure haunting folk, "Cola-tik" is the embodiment of melancholy whereas the progressive folk rock number "Maiden Voyage" displays the band's talent with extended compositions.
While the opening side is excellent, there is no foreshadowing of the brilliance to be found on the flip side. It moves beyond folk rock to a more complex prog rock sound and climaxing at the end of the album with a psychedelic space rock sequence not found since the glory days of Krautrock and bands like Ash Ra Tempel. "Transcendence" starts this side with serene piano and is augmented by bagpipe and flute. Then a powerful electric guitar enters to play the same beautiful melody. The tone gets noticeably louder until there's a dramatic break. Here, Avalanche display a ferocity that is a complete contrast to the delicate and mellow nature displayed so far. A soft, two-minute acoustic ballad is inserted to calm the nerves before the massively powerful "Oblivion" enters. This 11-minute plus opus is the high water mark for folk rock. As on "Transcendence", the composition opens softly with a stunning acoustic guitar melody which is then offset by some dire sounding flutes followed by harmonium. It's just unbelievably pretty yet somehow very sad. Just when you're ready to cry, the electric rhythm guitar begins a simple, jazzy pattern. The bass and drums follow shortly thereafter creating a head-moving groove. Entering unannounced is a twin guitar attack which begins to pulverize your senses. The sound is heavy and acidic like that of Manuel Göttsching, and the playing has the same soul the Ash Ra guitarist has. The solo contains a number of original melodies within that add to the special quality. And this goes on for close to seven minutes to solidify one of the most intense and beautiful guitar solos in rock history. The album ends at the peak of the solo; one almost wishes for another 15 minutes to be found from the same tape. What a trip through the emotions! The album is only available as a very expensive original and has yet to see a CD release. I have it from one source that the band wants to do a CD but the original tapes are missing and the group does not want a vinyl transcription. What a travesty. All should hear the beauty of this treasure.
(Tom Hayes, Proggnosis)
Monster time here. At the time the musical world was fully drenched in Punk and the last seventies attempts of symphonic rock, a totally unknown Dutch band recorded this, early seventies sounding masterpiece. It was released privately in a very limited quantity. The record stayed unknown and was only distributed among friends, until a collector found a copy of this and discovered how good this really is. Side 1 is more in a folky style with electrical folk and beautiful ballads. Only 1 track on the album has dreamy vocals, makes you shiver, that good. Side 2 contains very long instrumental progressive tracks; real pinaccles of the genre. Duelling guitars; one must simply hear this. Negotiations with band members to make a re-release on vinyl so far have had no results.
These tracks were recorded in 1975 (1 - 11) in Kuinre and in 1976 (12-13) in Emmeloord. The tracks were mastered at Studio Last Horizon.
In 1969 Bluesband Crusade was formed. After some time, like many other blues groups, Crusade changed their music to Progressive Rock.
In 1973 the band consisted of Cleem Determeijer (keyboards), Willem van der Wall (guitar and vocals), Pjotr Jurtschenko (flute and vocals), Henk Bol (bass guitar and vocals) and Mels Bol (drums). Also in 1973 they signed an exclusive contract with the famous Paul Acket Agency and even appeared at the Holland Festival of that year. In 1974 they started recording at the Rainbow Studios in The Hague. These sessions were to produce a first single and an album. Due to the world wide oil crisis this was, unfortunately, never to be. The disappointment eventually led to the break up of the band.
Danger is an experimental jazz-rock trio that released an album as a private pressing. It contains two side long improvisations reminiscent of Soft Machine. The recording was made during a rehearsal and is fully improvised. The only thing that was added later is the voice on side two.
Recorded by Bob de Lange.
Cover by Paul de Nooijer.
Recorded January 17, 1973 at the Paard van Troje Studio, Den Haag, The Netherlands
LP COW RCS 315 (1973)
Music is very much in the oomd of SOFT MACHINE lots of weird sounds and speciall effects too so it's not only jazz rock but also very much weird Psych great organ and sax playing synth too.
Danger is an experimental jazz-rock trio that released an album as a private pressing. It contains two side long improvisations reminiscent of Soft Machine. The three 3 members, playing Organ/Synthesizer/Tenor Sax. This is super dope music, i mean VERY PROGRESSIVE, I dont know a simular Dutch band who went to this level. If you are looking for something rare and total freaky, this is something for you. Now finally getting his recognition by mentioned in the "Private Dutch" book of Jean Jobses as well as the Hans Pokora's 4001 record collector dreams book. As always with obscure albums, I have been told that most copies were thrown away as nobody was buying this LP at the time.
In the mid sixties the band Goldstar Brothers was formed by singer Andre Groote, guitarist Henk Groote and drummer Ben Groote. Later they changed their name to G-Brothers and finally to Geebros. They were joined by organ player Lol Nijhuis, who was replaced by Henny Backers in 1968. The music was somewhat psychedelic. In 1969 their musical interest changed and they choose yet another name: Crying Wood. By this time they made heavy progressive music.
The bandtoured intensively and even recorded an album in 1970, which was called "Back to the mountains". Apparently this album was only released in Canada. The music on it is heavy with hints of Focus and Pantheon. Shortly after recording the album, the band fell apart. In 1974 the band is reformed by Ben Groote in 1974. Other members are: Cor Lievers (keyboards), Jan Veldkamp (guitar) and Gert Kozijn (bass guitar). Although the band records several demo's, a proper release was never made. Several line up changes follow, and the band finally ends in 1976.
Recorded at GTB studios, The Hague
Fragile was an obscure band that played a heavy, twin guitar rock. They choose this name as a tribute to the band Yes, who had released an album by the same name. The music of Fragile is not unlike Cargo or Wishbone Ash. The band saw the light around 1972. They recorded an album in 1974 but it was not released until 1976. After the album was released their rehearsal location, including their equipment, was burnt down. This didn't make them stop performing, but eventually they did disband the band due to lack of income. In 2004 their album was released on cd.
Produced by Ben Donkelaar
Recorded at Flower Tree Studio
LP Private pressing LLP6729 (1976)
CD Estrella ER42121 (2004)
Remastered reissue on CD of the one and only album by Dutch 70's psych/rural band consisting mainly of Mollucans who play guitar like crazy, as we know. On one side long track they expose a tapestry of excellent guitar fuzzing. One of the most wanted albums from Holland, and an absolute ultra rarity, originally made as a private pressing for friends, relatives, etc.
Another of those obscure groups responsible for an
impossible-to-get private pressing (only 500 were
manufactured!). Fragile had a guitar-oriented heavy rock sound
comparable to Cargo, Wishbone Ash, Night Sun and Epitaph. Their
album was recorded in 1974, two years before it was finally
(Scented Gardens Of The Mind, D. E. Asbjørnsen)
Ernst Kersting and Cees de Visser formed a duo under names like Abandoned Elephant, 11 Phant, Ellef-Fant and finally Ellufant. Kersting played his self build organ and de Visser played drums and a sort of echo machine played . Their music was very much improvised and during live performances tracks could last for about a half hour to three quarters of an hour. In 1972 they recorded a live album on behalf of Release, an organisation to help drug addicts. From this album 150 copies were made.
Recorded live on April 7th, 1972 at Ruimtes Situatie Centrum, Rotterdam.
Engineered by Koos Groeneveld
Produced by Lou Thiel
Cover by Fred Julsing
LP Discothiel (1972)
Ellufant's Release Concert has to be one of the weirdest Dutch obscurities, belonging less to the symphonic-influenced group of bands that would come later in the 70s and more to the psychedelic underground where bands like Ahora Mazda, Dennis and Ame Son reside. For 1972, Release Concert is a pretty dated album, with those late 60s organ and super wahed/fuzzed out guitar tones rambling on improvisationally. Ellufant mixed up this run of the mill, Iron Butterfly-like jamming by altering their tones, substantially at times, sometimes creating noises that sound like they originated from electronic equipment of years later. While some of these improvisations are occasionally interesting, they don't hold up too much over a full-length album, particularly because the music backing up the tonal manipulation varies very little. Surely, Soft Machine was an influence here at least in terms of the keyboards, although Ellufant don't have close to their level of chops. Not really a whole lot to say - plenty of reverb, mostly unexciting jamming, with only a bit of weird tone-tweaking to make it a bit better than average. Some obscurities were meant to be.
Mike McLatchey, Proggnosis)
Why was this record released? Release, a dutch foundation and social workers organisation which was trying to find alternative ways of helping young people with various problems, needed money and decided to organise a benefit concert in the Rotterdam Youth Center 'De Ruimte' in April 1972. They taped the concert by Dutch experimental band Ellufant or Abandoned Elephant or 11 phant, as they were also known as and pressed approx 150 copies of the album to sell in aid of the foundation.
What about the music? Ellufant was a two man band from Rotterdam, the Netherlands; keyboard player Ernst Kersting and percussionist Cees P. de Visser. Kersting used a modified keyboard, which he calls a V.S.K. Electronics organ on the sleeve. The music is dark, haunting underground improv sometimes comparable to early Pink Floyd, at other times sounding like german bands e.g. Can or even like electronic experimental music.
Not bad sound quality either for what is basically a private press on a shop label (Diskothiel was a record shop in Rotterdam).
The Dutch equivalent of Hardin & York or Sixty Nine, this was an organ-and-drums duo. 150 copies of their album were issued and sold at gigs in order to support an organisation helping drug addicts. Included were two tracks of long live improvisations with good use of wah-wah and other pedals, resulting in a sound resembling early Mike Ratledge. Listening to the album will transport you back to the heyday of the Dutch underground. It's quite a good live performance. The album is better than you might expect in the circumstances.(Scented Gardens Of The Mind, D. E. Asbjørnsen)
Project of composer Cees van Aanholt putting this band together for recording his music. After many changes and due of lack of time, Tamalone disbanded in 1981. The name Tamalone is taken from the charracter Tamalone (I am Alone) from the book- A tramp in Love- (1904) from the early 20-s century writer Arthur van Schendel. The story tells about the freedom of dreaming, unwanted love afairs and putting dreams above reallity. After Tamalone van Aanholt played in Blade Runner. Paul Pijman died in 1984.
LP Crossroad 279.109 (1979)
Recorded in the Crossroads Studio in Oss, The Netherlands
Released in 500 vinyl copies.
Imagine Ian Anderson and some other members of Jethro Tull taking a vacation in some rural farm, just before recording Songs from the wood and suffering from a post Minstrell in the Gallery melancholic sickness. Image him attending occasional folklore shows and living in perfect harmony with the calmness and soul healing effect of the green pastures. Imagine the unexpected company of Mark Knopfler, while young, still searching and discovering his distinctive guitar sound, pre-Dire Straits. If you can picture this set, you either have listened to this album already or will have a pretty good idea of how it sounds like.
New Acres has this real rural feeling, just like it was recorded to be listened while in voyage we cross the fields, the woods and the pastures of the most deserted parts of the country. It kindly mixes some folk acoustic sounds with the electric components of 70's progressive melodic music.
Cees van Aanholt sounds exactly like Ian Anderson, both in his vocal sound and (especially) the way that he sings. And also in his flute kind of play, though the flute parts are comprehensively less than the ones we listen in a Jethro Tull album. His acoustic guitar sounds simply delightful, setting a very harmonious structure upon which his voice blossoms.
The most curious element here is, in my opinion, the electric guitar, which rhythms sound a lot like the earliest works of Dire Straits. Even some Jan van Hout solos sound just like a rough Mark Knopfler version, before Sultans of Swing.
If New Acres and Triangle Tune seem like songs just out of Songs from the Wood. Good Earth's Wine and Song for Ophillus have a more Heavy Horses sound to it. They all have very beautiful melodic lines, perfect to fill your soul with refreshing and anti-stress thoughts.
In Moment of grief you will clearly discover the Knopfler's rhythm and solo alike sounds.
The use of female vocals, gently provided by Ester van der Hoorn add some originality to this band. They are very clear and beautiful, enriching songs like Interpretor and Answers. In Homage to Life, only the vocals and the flute approximate Tamalone to the Tullish sound that prevail throughout the rest of the album. This song is much more straight forward in the rhythm department, sounding a lot like early 80's rock'n'roll.
The acoustic Epilogue has a bitter mood musicality, though the lyrics are pretty much the contrary as they are about hope and strength to carry on. Which, for our displeasure, they didn't. This is the only work released by Tamalone, leaving us the impression that they could have had a pretty good future, for this album is an enjoyable display of kind and calm sounds.
The fans of the most light, relaxed and simple Jethro Tull songs will appreciate New Acres a lot. So will those who like uncompromising prog, with a very acute harmonious sense.
Although this is an album made under the name of Wisse Scheper (ex Act of God), it is often
referred as the band Topaz. The members met at the Groningen Conservatory. One of them is drummer George Snijder, who used to play in
At one of their practice sessions in Bartlehiem, they were heard by producer Ruud Jacobs and they signed a contract at CBS. In 1972 album is recorded. In the same year Snijder and Faulhaber are replaced by drummer Klaas de Vries and guitarist Eef Albers. The latter would record with Focus.
By the time it was 1973 the band had already come to an end. In interviews Scheper told he was recording a solo album withe the brothers Hollestelle on bass and guitar and drummer Debije, but this album was never released.
LP CBS S 64817 (1972)
Engineered by Jan Audier and produced by Chris Hinze.
Arranged by Wisse Scheper
Recorded at Soundpush Studios, Blaricum, The Netherlands.
Cool and obscure dutch early 70's pop/singer-songwriter album produced by jazz flautist Chris Hinze. Wisse Scheper is the main composer, lead singer and he plays a plethora of instruments too, and Topaz is actually the backing band's name. It *could* have been dreadful really, the kind of bland and melodramatic SSW stuff that was so common in the early 70's, but Hinze's background in jazz fusion ensures that unusual sounds, nice instrumental breaks and all sorts of cool little touches abound. Unfortunately, there are also some irritating vocal mannerisms too (ie : Our love will be b..). Songwise, this falls between a poppier Peter Hammill and Bowie circa Hunky Dory maybe. Not bad at all on the whole - better than you would expect anyway. Wonderful cover art too, simple yet brilliant. You'd be forgiven for thinking that this is actually some lost psychedelic masterpiece, or weird German jazz fusion upon seeing that cover for the first time. This is anything but - yet it's quite nice for what it is. (PS : I forgot to mention this, but Scheper does sing in english by the way)
Voiz originates from Franeker and is a band that play a sort of blues with progressive influences and religious lyrics. They started under the name His Masters Voice and the members where Koop Hofman (bass guitar), Sietse Kuipers (guitar), Bauke Sijtsma (guitar), Jacob Sijtsma (drums) and Herke Tichelaar (guitar). The music they play is folk rock with religious lyrics. As time goes by, they change their style to more progressive music. The line up is also changing, they are joined by Ivo de Jong (flute) and Jan Idzenga (bass guitar). When they were invited to record an album for the Grapevine lable in Eastborne, England they changed their name to Voiz. After some personnel changes the band evolved into Bonnie & the Boerema's. At this time the music was more soul and ska.
Produced by Pete Yates-Round
Recorded at ICC Studios, Eastbourne
Mastered at The Master Room, London
Engineered by Andy Kidd
Sleeve design by Phil Johns
LP Disaster Electronics (1978)
Voiz is a superb Dutch six-man progressive outfit that couples a hard-rock approach with classical flute accompaniment. The end result is a very bluesy sound not unlike early Jethro Tull recordings such as This Was and Stand Up. Only seven tracks, most being fairly long. '70s FM prog buffs will not be disappointed as they experience the slow burn of 'Keep Quiet' and 'Little Words', or the grungy r&r boogie of 'All The Way From Fryslan', all with loud potent electric guitar leads. 'Quality Of Life' and 'Laughing' both supply whimsical upbeat moments, the latter making use of ukulele, clarinet, and fuzz bass.
'Dank U', the only non-English song, provides a quieter symphonic mood before closing with a heavy electric guitar climax. Lively skillful flute work everywhere you turn, plus a few saxophone appearances, all within the prog/classic-rock context. Also nice dreamy background synthesizer adding depth to the sound. Deserves the same recognition as heavyweights like Agape and The Exkursions. Produced by Pete Yates-Round of Parchment and released on the British Grapevine label.
(Ken Scott - Archivist)
The Rotterdam based Swinging Soul Machine changed
its name to Machine and started to play a kind of hardrock with
progressive influences. Singer John Caljouw came from the
legendary band Dragonfly. Machine existed from 1970 to 1972 but was also revived from 1973 to 1974 by
Content and Warby. New members were Jaap Schoonhoven (guitar), Michel Marion (bass guitar), Marc Holland (drums), Nico Doorduyn (vocals) and Andre de Wendt (vocals, guitars).
As singles "Lonesome tree / Mohammed street" (Polydor 2050 017) and "Rainmaker / Say goodbye to your friends" (Polydor 2050049) were released.
LP Polydor 2441020 (1970)
CD Synton DWPD2052
CD Dwarf / Perceptions Records PDLP (2002)
Produced by Jaap Eggermont
Engineered by Erik Bakker
Photography by Richard Henning and Michael Walmsley
Fantastic dutch late 60s heavy acid psych!!! Machine was formed on ashes of Dragonfly - great dutch 60s underground psych band!!! This is their 1st and only album! Machine introduces the horn section together with loud heavy acid fuzz guitar. Really cool underground sound!!! 8 mostly longer tracks: "virgin" (groovy heavy acid fuzz guitar riff vs detroit hi-energy soul funk), "god's children" (trippy psych with hammond organ, psych effects and phasing), "old black magic" (heavy acid fuzz guitar and floating psych flute leads), "sunset eye" (long and very heavy apocalyptic underground psych!!!),... 1969 (i think), polydor, original dutch pressing. Extremly rare and very wanted album!!!
Rare Dutch prog with a psychedelic bent from 1970. Organ & guitars dominate the sound throughout the album. Featuring ex-Dragonfly (yes the awesome '60's Dutch psych band) lead vocalist John Caljouw the album is a great mixture of keyboard and sax led songs that drive along in a terrific early 70's prog style. Of particular note is the 6 minute "Spanish Roads" which contains excellent guitars and swirling Hammond B3 keyboards.
Machine were a 1970 Dutch group who played a mix of what was popular at the time: Psych, progressive, hard rock and horn rock. Nederbeat was one of the more healthy psych/garage scenes coming out of continental Europe and Machine were like the latter stages of those groups such as Q65 and Cosmic Dealer. The b Hammond organ presence adds a proto-prog sound similar to Deep Purple and Mainhorse. Horns were frequently inserted in those days to increase the odds of a chart appearance, given the wild success of Chicago and Blood Sweat and Tears. And, as expected, there's also a b blues influence throughout. The album has a b start but really crawls to the finish, as predictable 3-chord blues rock takes over the lion's share of the proceedings. Recommended to fans for bands as diverse as Affinity, Ahora Mazda, Warhorse and Irish Coffee.
Ton Vlasman, born in Rotterdam, created a psychedelic folk album in 1970. The album was recorded in one-and-a-half day and was released on the Amsterdam-based Flame Record label, an independent run by Don Peijters. His brother played in the legendary formation The Sound of Imker. The album sold badly at the time. In 1974 Vlasman surfaced under the name Flashman.
Sleeve by Leendert Le Duc
LP Red Fox RF 623 (1970)
CD Red Fox (2004)
CD Estrella Rockera
Reissue of a late 60's Dutch psych-folk gem. Ton is either blessed or cursed with a voice that sounds just like Bob Dylan. His language barrier keeps him from coming close to anything as profound as Dylan wrote but it offers an interesting twist on this album. His cover of the Velvet Underground's Pale Blue Eyes is the closest you'll probably ever get to hearing Dylan cover them. The album is split distinctly into the vocal tracks and two long raga blues instrumentals that have a bit of Floydian overtones to their production. Both the vocal and instrumental tracks stand well on their own but compliment each other when placed into context. Overall an album worthy of reissue and wider acclaim.
This is a real Dutch space folk monster from 1970. The title alone tells you where it's coming from! A wildly drug induced album full of dark psychedelia with folky overtones and exotic instrumentation. One of the best acid/space folk LPs ever. Great stoner hippie folk on the cosmic mystical level; full of weird urban folk and indian effects!! Great cover of Velvet's "Pale Blue Eyes" in a spaced out Dylanesque mood! In some parts reminding of the great German band DOM .The 2002 reissue seems to be long sold out.
Recently reissued this Dutch psych folk item. Two songs sound like a Bob Dylan a like. I would not have bought this gem for such tracks. But there are also two wonderful long raga like / finger picking instrumental tracks. The first one is accompanied by organ and sounds like an acoustic Pink Floyd, but reminds at the German 'Dom' LP too from that same year. The other instrumental is accompanied by flute in stead. The left over song is again psych folk with flute. An early Velvet Underground song we have here listed too. The reissue is a welcome surprise.
The Ton Vlasman LP White room with
disintegrating walls, was musically a cross between urban folk and Indian tinted music. The album was released on the Amsterdam-based Flame Record label, an independent run by Don Peijters (originally from Assen, his brother played in the legendary formation The Sound of Imker ! ) but sold very badly at the time. Already in the eighties, record collectors worldwide particulary loved the album cover, made by fellow-Rotterdammer Leendert Le Duc, who was also responsible for the
colourful inner, a design which would pop up again in 2000, when it was used for the cover of the prog-sampler Fantasio Daze on the (new) Op-Art label. When recording the LP, seven self-written compositions and one cover (the Velvet Underground’s Pale blue eyes ), Ton was accompanied by Frans Schoonen (organ, flute and harmonica) and Leo v.d. Vugt (Chincha tumba and tambourine). When visiting the Amsterdam 1990 Artist Record Fair, on request of the ARC-organisation, Ton was at the spot interviewed by a German reporter of the “Stern”, answering questions about the (already then) astonishing price of the album.
I've never quite been at peace with the acid folk/freak folk scene. On the surface, it seems right up my alley - the idea of uber-trippy lyrics and warm acoustic instrumentation warped through recording sounds fantastic. The execution, however, doesn't always do it for me. I still need to be spoon fed the Incredible String Band, which is a key influence for this Dutch fellow. Ton Vlasman's sort of a farm team player for the pastoral hippies, however. His voice echoes Dylan and the aforementioned ISB, but he lacks the control that those musical A-listers brought to their otherwise idiosyncratic vocals. The instrumentation is pretty minimal, but Vlasman knows his way around a ramshackle acoustic a few of the embellishments ended up getting my attention. Still, if you're a aficionado of the acid folk scene, you'll find a few things to groove into on this LP.
I'm all for the music journey, and the epic-length "Flight With a Circular Course" takes us on a weird minimal journey through the stratosphere of the ancient gods. The tracks is based around picked acoustic patterns, which flip backwards for a few segments, and is augmented by the occasional strange delay and some single organ lines beaming in from Pink Floyd's "A Saucerful of Secrets." "Mithrandir the White Horse Rider" opts to journey through the Welsh countryside of the Britons instead with a bellowing flute to keep the guitar company. There are some reflections of Robbie Basho, whim I covered last month, although Vlasman can't touch his level of folk guitar genius. "To Sell," "It's Alright With Me," and "Story of Too Many Prisoners" come off like second-rate Dylan, although I guess that's still better than the hordes of third- or fourth-rate or worse pretenders to the throne that even today proliferate the music scene. Meanwhile, "Walking in a Country Lane" and "The End" have more to do with the ISB and "Pale Blue Eyes" is not a Velvet Underground cover.
There are a few sparks of inspiration, especially in the longer tracks, but for the most part Ton Vlasman was simply up for a pleasant freak folk journey down already trailblazed roads. If you're already attuned to this kind of music, this deserves your ear. The rest of you may as well flip a coin over it.
(Dr Schluss Psychedelic Obscurities)
Marakesh is a band that came from Dordrecht and was formed in 1970 by Jan Plomp (drums), George Amelung (guitar, vocals), Wijnand Zijlmans (guitar, vocals), Zeeger Roobel (alt sax) and Dick de Jong (tenor sax). During their existence they suffered many line up changes. In 1976 they recorded an album. It consisted of long, dreamy symphonic tracks with jazzy influences. After the album was released, the band changed more towards a jazz rock band. In 1978 the band ended. One track of this new direction ended up on the sampler "Drechtstreek": Hot Flushes.
Henk Zijderveld went on to Carry Load and Ronnie Willemse became a member of Nightbird. Wout Prins went to Deadline and Pitches but eventually became the owner of a recording studio and Evert Houtman played in several bands, one of them was Deadline.
Produced by Marakesh, Jan Ridderinkhof and Rudolf Kuipers
LP Mirasound MS5023 (1976)
A pleasant, inoffensive primarily instrumental mid 70s progressive rock album. Reminds me a lot of the German bands of the era like Indigo and Fly. Especially the latter, given the saxophone presence. Keyboards are a string synth of some kind. What gives Marakesh a slight edge over their German brethren (in this genre anyway) is some inspired (and amplified) electric guitar work, and an occasional horn rock move with trumpet as a lead. The Dutch duo of related bands Mirror and Lethe are also benchmarks, though Marakesh weren't quite the masters of melody as those groups. One can see the transition from the early groups like Pantheon, Cargo and Earth & Fire to Marakesh and then onto the proto neo-progressive groups like Saga, a style that seemed to be an enormous influence on all modern era Dutch groups
Progressive rock band that starts in 1975 ends in 1983 and resurfaces as US in 1998. In the beginning Jos Wernars, Paul van Velzen and Ernest Wernars played Moody Blues and Steely Dan covers, but soon they worked on their own material. An album was released in 1979. After the release of the album Eeken left the band and new singer Tom de Jong joined the band. After a short tour de Jong and Goebertus left the band. They didn't find a new keyboard player, so Wernars took this role. Later new guitarist Nico Bakker and vocalist Ton van Kesteren entered the band. But after a few gigs the new memebers left, leaving the three original members behind. Lack of money made them sell their equipment leading to the end of Saga. In 1998 the Saga threesome started to play music again under the new name US, releasing several albums.
To whom it concerns
LP UAP-004 (1979)
On first hearing To Whom it Concerns I decided that it was just another average Euro-rock album from the mid-'70s; nothing special, just with a bit of Mellotron. Wrong. Now don't get me wrong, this is no classic, but it's actually a really nice European prog album, loaded with Mellotron. Keyboard player Guido Goebertus makes excellent use of 'Tron brass, with the usual strings making their presence felt, plus a little choir. The 'Tron-free track, Time Only Rumours is a pleasant little acoustic strumalong thing, very Genesis to be honest. In fact, Genesis are probably Saga's main influence overall, although they definitely have more of that 'late '70s' sound about them.
The Godfather of the Dutch neo progressive movement. Long before IQ and Marillion were reinventing the Genesis model for the 1980s, and even before the German school (Ivory, Neuschwanstein), Saga took on the task of replicating the "Foxtrot" sound. Countless bands on the former SI label and continuing today on InsideOut, Musea and Cyclops can point to Saga as a band who pioneered this trail for our friends in The Netherlands. Lots of mellotron here, which unfortunately is something that the neo's were keen to get away from. It's not a bad example of the genre, not as inspired as the German school like Sirius' "Running to Paradise" or Ivory's "Sad Cypress", but better than most of the Dutch Genesis imitators I can think of. UAP also had Kracq amongst its ranks, and they've self-released their one fine album, so perhaps Saga will do the same?
Sustain is a progressive rock band that existed from 1976 until 1982 and recorded two albums. They started as a quartet, but were joined in 1977 by a sax player to become a quintet. The first album was released in 1978. In 1980 they changed their name to Sustayn and made more popular music. With this formation an album was released in 1981.
LP UAP-002 (1978)
One of those big time rarities that have collectors turning every stone over for. And when you finally here it, you go "What? That's it?" Sustain are about as generic as it gets. Slow to mid tempo rock/jazz tracks, amateur thin production, slightly spacey textures, poorly executed accented English vocals, some mild sax and guitar leads. I suppose if you look at some of the other Dutch/Flemish albums from the era, like Flyte and Isopoda, you can get an idea of their sound. It's not that its terrible or anything, but it's hard to imagine ANYONE getting too worked up about it. It's just so... so.... so.... Plain.
(Ashratom, Rate Your Music)
Time for a change
LP VLP 198168 (1981)
Engineered by Jaap Brunner
Produced by Sustayn, Jaap Brunner and Jelmer van Knijff
Recorded and mixed October and November 1981 at Ballad Sound Studio, Vuren, The Netherlands
Children of Jubal were a psychedelic rockband from Surhuisterveen. The music was experimental with influences from Pink Foyd and Soft Machine. The band formed in 1967 by Geert van der Velde (drums and vocals), Harry Moltmaker (bass guitar) and Anne Weening (guitar). At the time they were known as First Edition. They changed their name in 1969 when they discovered that there already existed a band with that name. Around the same time Weening was replaced by Teake Beukema. They were also joined by Sietze Pultrun who became their technician. In 1971 they found a new drummer in Eric Dam, which meant that van der Velde could focus on his vocal skills. In 1972 Beukema left the band because he needed the time for his study. That year Yntze Heida joined the band as guitarist. This would be the most successful formation. They also recorded two songs for a split album (together with Pugh's Place and Rick - Dave). In 1974 the band got rid off Pultrun and they named themselves simply Children. The music became more straight forward rock. In 1979 the band ended. In 1999 they performed for a reunion concert in Drachten. Heida went to the band Bee Brunett and played in Timmi Ritmo. He is currently active in Rubber Soul, a Beatles revival band.
Child in time - Live
Produced by Wobbe van Seijen
LP Universe 1087320 (1972)
The tracks by Pugh's Place were recorded during their farewell concert at the Pow-Wow (in Leeuwarden) in September 1971. The track by Rick and Dave is a studio recording.
Zoo was a melodic progressive rockband from the town of Groningen. They are formed in 1970 when the band
Spring changed its name. From the original members only Eddy Meyer and Bert Veldkamp remained. They were joined by Gerhard Jeltes and Robbie Pwa, who used to play with Wisse Scheper. Zoo released several singles before they recorded an album in 1973.
In 1974 Zoo ends. Bass player Bert Veldkamp joins Kayak, a few others start the new group Kangaroo. During their existence they release four singles.
Produced by Richard du Bois
LP CNR 541645 (1973)
The medley "Dedicated to you all" consists of the following tracks: We can work it out, Norwegian wood, Day tripper, Baby you're a rich man, Got to get you into my life and Eight days a week.
The music that Zoo plays is melodic rock, with hints of progressive rock. The music is not complex. At best it sounds like Argent, but at it worst they sound like your average seventies band. An example of the first is "Zoo music", an example of the latter is "Everybody knows". Another enjoying track is the Beatle medley. It all sounds very professional, melodic, but also a bit dull. No adventure or any risk in the music, so not a recommendation for a truly progressive album.
(Dutch progressive rock of the nineteen seventies)
(sources: Oor Popencyclopedie, Private Dutch, Album sleeves,