Fruits de Mer Volume 18

ROQUETING THROUGH SPACE


it's spacerock Jim, but not as we know it

Our description of spacerock took on an inceasingly Germanic accent with some serious detours into parallel universes, as we gradually built up the tracks - and we ended up with so much good stuff, we ended up having to produce a 12" + 7" package, which we then decided to house in a fantastic gatefold sleeve - 19" of commercial madness. We've called it 'Roqueting Through Space' - we don't rightly know why, maybe the cover image gives a clue/excuse - but we booked an ad promoting it in Record Collector, so we had to decide on something.

The cover is courtesy of Gregory Curvey, he of The Luck of Eden Hall, who also feature on the album) - the kind of thing that will have Vertigo, Charisma and Harvest fans drooling
What about the music? Tracks originally recorded by:
Neu!
Brainticket
Can
Julian Cope
Hawkwind
Pink Floyd
Hooterville Trolley
The Tornados

...are revisited and reinvented by Sendelica, Vert:x, Cranium Pie's Baking Research Station, The Grand Astoria, Vibravoid, Helicon, Diarmuid MacDiarmada, The Luck of Eden Hall, Frobisher Neck and Alpha Omega - not bad, eh?
Well, have a sneak preview and decide for yourself...

FROBISHER NECK - 'ISI' (original by Neu!)

CRANIUM PIE'S BAKING RESEARCH STATION - 'Blacksand' (original by Brainticket)

Here is the track listing in full...

LP
A side track 1 Vibravoid - No Silver Bird (originally by Hooterville Trolley)
A side track 2 Vert:x - I Come From Another Planet, Baby (Julian Cope)
A side track 3 - Helicon - Hallogallo (Neu!)

B side track 1 - Cranium Pie's Research Baking Station - Blacksand (Brainticket)
B side track 2 - Luck Of Eden Hall - Lucifer Sam (Pink Floyd)
B side track 3 - Frobisher Neck - Isi (Neu!)
B side track 4 - The Grand Astoria - Oh Yeah- (Can)
B side track 5 - Diarmuid MacDiarmada - Telstar (The Tornados)

7"
A side - Alpha Omega - Transdimensional Paradox (Hawkwind)
(actually a mix of Transdimensional Man + Paradox)
AA side - Sendelica with Nik Turner - Urban Guerilla (Hawkwind)

Sold Out!
Sorry - you've got all the way to this point, and now we tell you we don't have any copies left! But you might pick one up at like-minded online record stores such as Heyday, rough Trade, Norman or Piccadilly.
the centrefold in all it's glory - actually, the real thing is a lot bigger
The Roqueting Through Space press release....

Fruits de Mer Records
presents
Roqueting Through Space
colour vinyl LP + 72 single - all in a stunning gatefold sleeve
on sale late-March 2011

Fruits de Mer Records seriously overreaches itself with its first release of 2011 - a whopping 19" colour vinyl extravaganza, featuring classic spacerock and krautrock tracks (and much more besides), all in the hands of an amazing line-up of new bands from England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, USA, Russia, Germany and Australia, who treat the original tracks with love, affection, electronics and, occasionally, a sense of the absurd. It's our equivalent of putting a man on the moon...or a crab.

It's not quite spacerock, it's not quite krautrock, it's only available on coloured vinyl - and it's limited to 500 copies in a black-and-white gatefold sleeve that's worth the price of admission on its own

What on earth is spacerock?
As we discussed possible tracks for inclusion with a number of our favourite bands, we gradually realised that 'space rock' is a great term for a type of music, but it means completely different things to different people - spacey, spaced-out, outer/inner space, sci-fi, instrumental jams, electronic rock; so we decided to drop the pretence of defining the genre, and instead gave our chosen bands the scope to decide for themselves what spacerock meant to them ¨C and if the end-result worked for us, it was in!
As for the bands who've taken on the task of making all this seemingly random thinking by us make musical sense; some will be well-known to Fruits de Mer fans (Vibravoid, Cranium Pie, Sendelica, The Luck of Eden Hall), others are new to us, and maybe to you; they range from the magical to the maniacal, the distinctive to the disturbed - you get the picture.
As a result, we have pretty much the whole sodding history of the space race covered, from 1962 (The Tornados) to 1996 (Julian Cope), from Germany's finest psych rock band covering a 60s US track to a Russian stoner-punk band coming up with a country-tinged version of a krautrock classic (which was originally sung by a Japanese guy); from the Silver Machinations of Vert:x to Cranium Pie's Baking Research Station cooking up a Swiss electronic prog rock fondue a la Pierre Henry.
Pink Floyd and Hawkwind tracks feature' of course, Sendelica even got Nik Turner to contribute sax to one of the Hawklords' songs which make up the 7" single that accompanies the LP (Michael Moorcock has heard Nik's track and said, "Bloody good version of UG. Deserves to sell millions!"; add in two exceptional tracks originally recorded by Neu! and you're Roqueting Through Space.

Full band and track listing:

LP
A side track 1 - Vibravoid - No Silver Bird (originally by Hooterville Trolley)
A side track 2 - Vert:x - I Come From Another Planet, Baby (Julian Cope)
A side track 3 - Helicon - Hallogallo(Neu!)
B side track 1 - Cranium Pie's Research Baking Station - Blacksand (Brainticket)
B side track 2 - Luck Of Eden Hall - Lucifer Sam(Pink Floyd)
B side track 3 - Frobisher Neck - Isi (Neu!)
B side track 4 - The Grand Astoria - Oh Yeah (Can)
B side track 5 - Diarmuid MacDiarmada - Telstar (The Tornados)

7"
A side - Alpha Omega - Transdimensional Paradox (Hawkwind)
(actually a mix of Transdimensional Man + Paradox)
AA side - Sendelica with Nik Turner - Urban Guerilla (Hawkwind)

For more information contact: fruitsdemer7@hotmail.com
More background at: www.fruitsdemerrecords.com

So what do the bands have to say about some of the tracks?

¡®Isi' has always been my absolute favourite NEU! track. It's the first song of theirs that I ever heard and the song that got me into them. I never fail to be uplifted and inspired by it. The original is already pretty spacey anyway (although fairly sparse instrumentation-wise, all part of its magic of course) - but I wanted to see if I could bring out more of that spacey side of it through my arrangement, so by contrast I figured that it was ripe for really going to town on the instrumentation...and in any case it was crying out for huge dollops of Mellotron! I hope I have succeeded in keeping the spirit of the original while adding my own twist¡­Frobisher Head on ¡®Isi¡¯. The track we chose is a combination of favourites. We wanted a more obscure track and also a more well known one so decided to combine the two. By utilising a heavier sound and female vocal the track was transformed from the original sonic template to an Alpha Omega mindbender¡­
Alpha Omega on combining Hawkwind¡¯s ¡®Transformational Man¡¯ and ¡® Paradox¡¯

The track comes from our favourite phase of Cope¡¯s lengthy career, post-Island, pre-metal. It contains many elements of what makes Cope so interesting¡­ humour, musicality, strangeness. However, we thought the track was a bit too frantic so we slowed it down a bit for our version, got the drums pulsing, made sure we had lots of spaceships flying around (we referenced another Cope track, ¡®Wayland¡¯s Smithy Has Wings¡¯ with that), phased the guitars and vocals and there you have it¡­
Vert:x on ¡®I Come From Another Planet, Baby¡¯

Always thought it would make a great dance track! And it was fun getting Nik Turner to cover his own song¡­
Sendelica on ¡®Urban Guerilla¡¯

Hallogallo was probably the first song that really introduced us to Krautrock. FdM initially asked us to submit a ¡®space rock¡¯ track and I think perhaps we possibly took this the wrong way. But we¡¯ve been spaced out loads by the original Neu! track, so in our head it is ¡®space rock¡¯. We¡¯ve a very loose and improvisational style to creating our music, even when a track is recorded, and we knew that we could get the hypnotic rhythm of Hallogallo groovin¡¯ along immediately. All we had to do was add the dark bite that I guess has become something of a signature sound for us. The version we have submitted was literally our first recorded ¡®take¡¯. We were jamming along and simply couldn¡¯t stop, so when it felt that good¡­ leave well alone!
Helicon on ¡®Hallogallo¡¯

Lucifer Sam has always been a favorite so we thought we'd give it a hand into the 21 century...
The Luck of Eden Hall on ¡®Lucifer Sam¡¯

I have a longstanding fixation with Joe Meek from before I knew who he was; tunes like ¡®Telstar¡¯ and ¡®Johnny remember me¡¯ were among my favourites as a child. I¡¯ve been thinking about doing an album of Meek-produced songs for some time, ¡®Telstar¡¯ is one of the few that I¡¯ve completed. The idea for the cover was to try to do an overwhelming, overloaded, pounding, droning version but still being true to the musical drama of the original. I also love the fact that the melody came to Geoff Goddard during a s¨¦ance...
Diarmuid MacDiarmada on ¡®Telstar¡¯

Enough from us, what do other people say about SPACEROCK?
¡°Rock genre born during the 70¡äs influenced by the psychedelic sound of the late 60¡äs of bands like Pink Floyd and early krautrock electronic music. The earliest piece of space rock is allegedly a song from the 40¡äs written by Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger for a BBC radio show called ¡°You¡¯re Only Young Once¡±. The song, called ¡°Space Girl¡±, was a parody of the science fiction culture from the 40¡äs.
Space rock music is characterized by the use of spacial and floating backgrounds, mantra loops, electronic sequences, and futuristic effects over rock structures. This style was primarily defined by the bands Hawkwind and Gong during the early 70¡äs. This sound was developed parallely to the kosmiche rock scene in Germany, protagonized by the Cosmic Jokers¡±.
Intuitive Music (intuitivemusic.com)

¡°The late 1960's psychedelic rock scene also spawned the birth of the space rock genre. The pioneering acts of this genre assimilated krautrock elements like repetitive hypnotic beats and electronic/ambient soundscapes as they moved away from the common musical and compositional approach. The synthesizer with its bubbling tones and spacey patterns, provoking a gliding flow, is a typical instrument of this genre. Guitars are by preference played with glissando technique and delay/echo effects are heavily used, and elements originating from reggae/dub are fairly common. Several bands combine their live performances with trippy lightshows using random fractals. Albums in this genre will often include at least one long meandering jam based on a main theme, where loops and wavelike fluctuations provides slight variations to this structural foundation.
Stories, images, song titles and album names referring to cosmic themes are fairly common features of the genre. HAWKWIND's live album "Space Ritual" is said to be the ultimate space rock album due to the collaboration with sci-fi author Michael Moorcock. His lyrics are performed by a narrator and underlaid with synth elements...¡±
Progarchives.com

¡°Space rock is a subgenre of rock music; the term originally referred to a group of early, mostly British, 1970s progressive and psychedelic rock bands such as Hawkwind and Pink Floyd,] characterised by slow, lengthy instrumental passages dominated by synthesizers, experimental guitar work and science fiction lyrical themes... Space rock emerged from the late 1960s psychedelic music scene in Britain and was closely associated with the progressive rock movement of the same time period. The earliest example of Space Rock is the 1959 concept album I Hear a New World by British producer and song writer Joe Meek. The album was inspired by the space race and concerned man's first close encounter with alien life forms. Pink Floyd's early albums contain pioneering development of s
pace rock on some tracks; "Astronomy Domine" and "Interstellar Overdrive" from their debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn are examples. Their second album A Saucerful of Secrets contained further examples: "Let There Be More Light" and "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" with explicit science fiction themes.... The Beatles' song "Flying" (1967), originally titled "Aerial Tour Instrumental", was a psychedelic instrumental about the sensation of flying, whether in a craft or in your own head space, The Rolling Stones' song "2000 Light Years from Home" (1967), which drew heavily on some of the aforementioned Pink Floyd songs, is another early form of space rock. Jimi Hendrix is also an early innovator of the genre, with such tracks as "Third Stone from the Sun", "1983... (A Merman I Should Turn to Be)" and "The Stars That Play with Laughing Sam's Dice".
David Bowie's "Space Oddity" (1969) is probably the best example of a space rock song achieving mainstream recognition. A major album in the history of space rock was Hawkwind's Space Ritual (1973), a two-disc live album advertised as "88 minutes of brain-damage" documenting Hawkwind's successful 1972 tour of their blow-out show complete with liquid lights and lasers...the science fiction author Michael Moorcock collaborated with Hawkwind on many occasions: for example, he wrote the lyrics for many of the spoken-word sections on Space Ritual.¡±
Wikipedia


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